Purveyor of Bollocks to the Crowned Heads of Europe
Saturday, 8 October 2016
La Coq Sportive
I have tried to like sport, but it just won't happen. This is not an affectation, it's just the way it is. I mean, why would I deliberately turn my back on yet another way of enjoying myself at weekends?
There was a big rugby match on the Rec outside our compact but adorable city apartment last night, and the blindingly powerful lights flooded our living room. The crowd were roaring and I could tell it was a good match, going in Bath's favour. Half-way through a friend breathlessly texted me saying that Bath were ahead 33-3, but I don't as yet know the final score - because I do not follow rugby.
Every Summer, I get a twinge of regret that I am not at the Glastonbury Festival along with 250,000 other mates, but it doesn't last long. I feel the same way about the Rec's rugby matches, but - once again - the sensation that I am missing out on a party does not last long.
I think it is sports personalities (an oxymoron if ever there was) who put me off. They should stick to what they can do best, but I do understand that they have to be interviewed immediately after winning, and I am impressed that they can talk at all. I need about 15 minutes to respond to any question if I have just climbed the stairs.
I think that if anyone is foolish enough to book an England cricketer to give an after-dinner speech, then they deserve all they get. I would imagine that his speech would be exactly like a really bad one given by the Best Man at a crap wedding, but over an hour long.
The best policy would be to have them warm up on a tread-mill as the guests are having their banquet, then deliver the speech from the same tread-mill, having wheeled it out on the stage with the cricketer still on it. Make them work for their money, that's what I say. The only trouble is that if they are retired and no longer in training, this may double the length of the speech. I didn't think that one through.
A few years ago, a young friend showed me a photo of herself standing next to a man I had never seen before, and they were both smiling for England.