Thursday, 27 September 2012

New Zidane Statue Proves Context is Everything

Context: The 2006 World Cup Final saw Italy and France line up against each other to claim the ultimate 
international footballing prize. It was a close fought match which saw both teams score in the first 20 mins (courtesy of goals from Italy's Marco Materazzi and France's Zinedine Zidane...which is ironic considering what happened next). Then out of the blue Materazzi said something to Zidane and the Frenchman end up turning round and headbutting him... but this wasn't a normal headbutt - no this was a special kind of headbutt that was directed at his chest. Zidane later justified his actions saying that Materazzi had made nasty comments about his sister - oh dear... it is clear to see that Zidane is not a man to enter into banter with over jokes about his mother... He also wanted to say that he was sorry for his actions blah blah blah... but that he did not regret his actions blah blah blah (if I was you I would Zidane)

I was honestly hoping that Zidane would say that he was very sorry that he headbutted him in the chest and that if he had the chance again he would clench his fist and smack him in the face or at least headbutt him in the face like a 'normal' human being. Instead we are left with possibly one of the strangest looking on pitch offences in my mind ...

Roll on six years and just as we were beginning to forget one of the most stupid moments in a world cup final when boom... someone makes a statue of it... yes why not? I mean a man headbutts another man in a match needs to be molded into a bronze statue for the world to see because without it life would just be meaningless... As if the 715.1 million people globally who watched the match live wasn't enough, now the rest can catch a glimpse as well... all you have to do is visit Paris... and here it is...

Ok so we've had the context, but lets de-contextualise it... seriously what the fuck is going on there?... What is happening on Materazzi's face? Is he in pain or is he enjoying this? And Zidane... is he sniffing him, or staring at his crotch? Zidane doesn't look like he's attacking more just looking ready to give Materazzi that face all over again. I am not saying that either man is in fact gay... I'm just saying that whoever made these statues might have wanted to consider a bit of contextualisation here... If we look here and at the actaul photo Materazzi's arm is now above Zidane's which seem to change the feeling of it... that clenched fist looks less like a punch and more like a... Ok so I could go on, but I have had my fun and feel it's time to move on.

The point I also wanted to make is why make a statue of this? This was a moment of violence in a match that  detracted from what should be a peaceful event that brings people together... why immortalise a heabutt.. and a badly directed one at that, when we should maybe immortalise an image of someone lifting the cup... It seems very strange that this of all things was chosen as a great idea for a Bronze statue in Paris...

So, on a day today when John Terry was found guilty by the FA of racial abuse towards Anton Ferdinand, will an artist be commissioned to immortalise this dark moment of sports and society? I fucking hope not... or perhaps it could be an image of Joey Barton stubbing a cigar out in a team mates eye? or Roy Keane breaking Alf-Inge Haaland's legs in a career ending two footed challenge? Of course we won't (I do still have a tiny of fear that human beings can be this ridiculous) so why on God's green earth do we see this?

Please, feel free to explain this to me cause - I am obviously rather heathen and just don't get 'art'.

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Tuesday, 25 September 2012

Weekly Wombat (11/09/12 - 22/09/12) - Weekly?

So it's nearly Fortnightly Wombat this time around but I've been in transit from Brazil and the airline managed to misplace my baggage (see special thanks at the end of this post)

 So news that caught my eye this time round - Person sticks primate down his pants, Obese Elephants to go on a diet, Pennsylvanian couple commit dog-napping and Romney continues to act like a tit.

1) This is the first of two news stories this week that refer to India - a man was patted down at New Delhi's Indira Gandhi airport when the security officer discovered a rather strange object in his underpants. We have all heard of jewels in anuses and condoms full of coke, but what I never expected to read that a man had stuck a rare primate next to his private parts. In his underpants was to be found the endangered Sri Lankan Loris (Nope I've never heard of it before) carefully tucked up next to his... how do we put this delicately? errmm cock. Apart from the fact that this stunt has done much to improve world knowledge of this tiny critter, it is possible that the man has also tarnished the reputation of it as well by trying to get it involved in the mile high club.

The critter, which grows up to 10 inches, has huge eyes which I can only hope he kept closed for the duration of his journey... The question I want to ask is at what point did the animal smuggler decide it was a good idea to stick a live animal next to his penis? Was this a replacement for the old sock technique to boost ego? Was he not a little worried that it might get a bit peckish  and take a bite? A second Loris was found in a bin so it's clear that while the man from the UAE's morals and common sense absconded, his knowledge of biology did not, therefore keeping only one in his pants as to improve his manhood.

2) In India again and celebrated temple elephants in Tamil Nadu are to go on a diet after being discovered to be overweight... The obese elephants situation has been blamed on secret snacks from pilgrims and lack of exercise due to 'being chained to the ground' - yep that could do it... Elephants are worshiped as holy representations of Ganesha - and can be hired for less than £20 for parties and tourist rides... why do we need to chain up and market a deity? If Jesus comes back it's like saying, oh great you're the son of God, but we don't have you on any official records so we'll have to leave you in confinement and hire you out as an after dinner speaker...

please, someone give these poor animals some exercise... and while your at it can we start to address the rapidly increasing obese world population... if elephants can diet, so can Americans, Europeans etc.

3) A couple from Pennsylvania discovered two of their neighbours dogs had wandered on to their property
and while returning one decided to keep the other and sell it on Craigslist for $50. What the fuck were they thinking? Why not just stick it down your underpants, go through airport security and get patted down with a baby Rottweiler stuffed down there. The idiots were caught when the police visited and their kid confessed saying my mummy sold it on the internet... my words fail me to describe to level of moron we are dealing with here...

4)Mr Mitt Romney continues to be a gift from God for Obama. With gaff after gaff it's a wonder that there is even going to be an election.... people like to blame and it seems it has all fallen on Obama - the economic crisis and the wars (neither of which were his fault) and his failing healthcare bill, which Romney initially supported... but Romney keeps dishing out the comedy with catchphrases such as "I like being able to fire people who provide services to me." and "I'm not concerned about the very poor. We have a safety net there." My favourite though has to be his leaked comments when he said...

"There are 47 percent of the people who will vote for the president no matter what. All right, there are 47 percent who are with him, who are dependent upon government, who believe that they are victims, who believe the government has a responsibility to care for them, who believe that they are entitled to health care, to food, to housing, to you-name-it. ... My job is not to worry about those people. I'll never convince them they should take personal responsibility and care for their lives."

(is it me or do the look a little on the similar side? - a bit weird me thinks - it's amazing what a little 'Just for Men' can achieve)

I just want to say well done to the Democrat party for playing a blinder and putting a real candidate and a dummy one up for election! With all this shit people can't seriously be wondering who to vote for... Obama or the accidental comedian... with the former we get possibly more change and positive shift, with the latter we get four years of gaffs just like Bush 2 - comedy gold - oh yes and possibly hell on Earth again with everyone in the world running for cover... you decide.

And on a final note I just want to say a special thanks to the people who lost my bags... while I was on a flight from Brasil for just 12 hours, my bags have been all over the world (lucky bastards) and five days later have still not arrived which is great cause I love just having two sets of clothes to wear and washing one while wearing the others - thanks again.

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Friday, 14 September 2012

Here comes The Sun

I love the news... hell most of the time current affairs are the subject of this blog... I even like amusing satirical or deliberatly (and obviously) faked news that has the purpose of making people laugh.

I have in the past waged a small war against the Metro newspaper... but let's face it - it's free and I now even read it in Portuguese on the train in Brazil! I have made my peace.. the news may be a bit shit and nothing positive really comes out of it, but on the whole the news is pretty much genuine... The war is over - for now.

While I argue all news can never be truly objective and will always maintain an air of subjectivity due to the writers own opinions, this doesn't stop me reading it... in fact I enjoy the subtle ways in which the wording of a sentence betrays the thoughts of the journalist... I however do not enjoy the made up ramblings of journalists who invent stories...

Lets now turn the clocks back 23 years, when I was but a wee lad. I was 7 and one shocking day something came on the news that shocked me and stayed in my memory to this day. 96 people were crushed to death during a football match between Nottingham Forest and Liverpool. 96 people lost their lives. It is the most sporting related casualty the UK has ever witnessed. Luckily I didn't read the Sun otherwise I might have had to re-learn the truth I had always known 23 years later...

'The Truth' showed that the South Yorkshire Police acted with dignity and integrity trying to help the fallen victims battling against vicious Liverpool fans who were, among other things, pissing on police and looting the pockets of the fallen victims... All 96 were dead before the police could get to them and the Conservative party were in no way involved in a cover-up.

For 23 years the Liverpool fans protested their innocence.

Roll on 23 years and an independant commission discovered a different chain of events. The Sun then published their retraction, 23 years too late...

'The Real Truth' showed that the South Yorkshire Police altered statements and falsified reports to improve their reputation. That the proud Liverpool fans were wrongly accused of such heinous acts and have had their names dragged through the mud for 23 years. That somehow the Conservative MP of the time for Sheffield Hallam was involved in passing the story out and that The Sun's story was in fact a crock of shit.

There was more... Not all of the 96 were dead when the police got to them... upto 41 were still alive and could have survived if reactions by the emergency services had been improved.

The Sun helped, among other papers and people at the time, to tarnish the reputations of not only the victims, their families and Liverpool fans alike but also the police who are honest in the country. The apologies have flowed... the Prime minister, the opposition, the former leader of the paper... but the damage has been done.

You cannot repair 23 years of hurt... no apology is enough. There is now a protest on Twitter to stop the sales of The Sun newspaper, and so soon after the News of the World scandals... Support this protest, seek justice for the 96 and their families. I am not a Liverpool fan, but I am a human being... I am ashamed of my countries behaviour during this crisis. It is time for the people responsible in this cover-up to be held accountable from the police to the politicians. Thank God for the exhonoration of the fans that day but as Trevor Hicks, chairman of the Hillsborough Family Support Group said this is "too little, too late"

Do yourselves a favour - always question 'the truth'

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Wednesday, 12 September 2012

Weekly Wombat (3/9/12 - 10/9/12)

In the news this week Clint Eastwood kicked off at a chair, Barack Obama gives out his secret recipe and Iran presses on with it's Nuclear Program despite World of Warcraft ban...

Ok so it's been just over a week since the last Weekly Wombat and I'm not one for making excuses cause I'm usually too tired and busy to make them... but it's my last week in Brasil... 

1) Clint Eastwood gave the world a new reason to fear actors ever becoming politicians as he set about addressing the chair as though it was Barack Obama... In a rather strange viewing spectacular Clint possibly turned out to be the greatest wildcard the democrats never played. I love Clint, I think he's great, but please to God don't support your Republican views by ranting to an empty chair.... It was as if some senile old git had got up on stage and destroyed everything that Romney had built. It was however fantastic entertainment... This too also adds weight to the likes Arnie staying in acting and maybe leaving the politics to the less dramatic more considerate liars out there... And if Clints oscar winning rant didn't set you on fire lets just think... Reagan was an actor before he went into politics... and look how well he turned out...

2) A lovely little story in the news this week was that the Whitehouse's closely guarded secret of how Mr Obama brews his apparently 'world famous' honey beer... I had no idea he did... and frankly I don't care... and didn't care right up until I saw that maybe just maybe there was a little sneaky element to this...

In the US it is always said that the candidate you vote for is the one you would most like to share a drink with. Romney being a devout Mormon doesn't sip the amber nectar, but apparently Obama loves it so much he brews it in the Whitehouse... which to me seems to cheapen the status of that building a little... I mean can you imagine a group of MPs getting together and making some homebrew in the Houses of Parliament? It all seems a bit of hard work when you can just claim it on expenses like the rest of the politicians. Ok so I'm a bit cynical about the motives of revealing the recipe right around election time but in all fairness we should be concentrating on who the fuck out of the two of them is going to sort out the massive deficit in finances and third world economy that is creeping upon them and not who the fuck gets pissed ...This would make most people in America and in other countries happier... well in most of the others... one exception being...

3) Iran... they're at it again ... last week I wrote that Blizzard had stopped it's support of World of Warcraft in Iran but it seems that the people who play WoW couldn't convince the hierarchy to stop enriching and now they've doubled their production... shock horror it's as if they don't care what the other countries in the West think of them... So what happened? Israels Prime minister Ben Netanyahu claims that Iran is now the worlds greatest threat replacing Iraq with all their WMDs on the top of the list. Ben went to the USA but unfortunately Barack was to busy to meet to discuss how they would solve 'the problem' (possibly home brewing?)

The only way America could justify attacking Iran is if Iran was to declare war... So that could never happen? Roll on to other news and America has taken a keen interest in Syria, one of Irans closest allies, and says that force will be issued if they do not stop hostilities and murdering there own people... I mean this is totally unrelated to other issues and look what the west did to help when similar was happening in Sri Lanka, Zimbabwe and Egypt? That's right ... nothing... it's almost as if there might be a secondary reason to help Syria... some form of alternative purpose, but clearly there couldn't be... right? And now with Russia, who are well known for their tolerance, not the happiest about the idea of American intervention this spells a rather interesting time in the middle east which makes me rather glad that I live far away in the depths of South America...

And finally, in case you missed it... a woman in Hertfordshire, England forgot about a cabbage and then after two weeks discovered that it had sprouted 12 inches which means this is probably the shittest fucking news story I have ever heard in my life... with all the important news on the planet, all the suffering and injustice, all the inequality in the world the Hereford Times feels the need to write a piece about an old woman and a fucking cabbage... can the human race ever be saved? We are a disease with smiles... so the answer you are looking for is probably not.

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Wednesday, 5 September 2012

Why do we use bins?

The other day I was in Sao Paulo, Brasil in the Japanese town known as Liberdades... (it's a fucking awesome place if you ever get the chance to visit). I happened to be enjoying Sir Alex Ferguson's favourite past time of chewing some gum when as typical these days it suddenly lost all its flavour and I felt like I was chewing some particularly foul tasting cardboard... when is someone going to finally Willy Wonka some of that into eternal flavoured gum? Possibly never on the grounds that if something doesn't break or last forever working perfectly well then no consumer is ever going to buy any others... welcome to capitalism 101.

So with my mouth tasting somewhat akin (I imagine) to a goats arse I decided to chuck the offending article. I removed the piece of shit cardboard tasting material from my mouth (sorry to anyone of a more sensitive disposition for the brutal imagery) and proceeded to wrap it in a piece of scrap paper that I located in my right hand pocket. With shit tasting thing in hand I began to scour the street for a bin and to my dismay there were none on the same side of the road as me. Luckily I spied one across the way and crossed the road (which can be rather hazardous in Brasil, especially when you consider the traffic comes from the opposite direction to which I'm used to) to place the thing in the bin.

I then recrossed the road and to my amazement the man who was selling some strawberries on the street started to laugh in a manner that could only be certified as a guffaw. Now at this point I need to confirm that my Portuguese is not up to the level where I can have some banter with a man selling strawberries and can certainly not have taken him apart in a debate. He then informed as to the source of the amusement - the fact I bothered to cross the road to use a bin when I can just throw it on the ground like anyone else. At this point I wanted to maybe I don't want to take advice from a man who sells fruit for a living or maybe just maybe I don't want to live in a world that is a rubbish tip. Instead I smiled at him and gave him a condescending nod.

He then went on to expand his sagely advice that by throwing it on the ground you were creating a job for someone... There was so much that if this cretin had spoken English I would have demolished him - however the language barrier stopped me from even bothering enter into conversation. The problem here is not this guy, it's the fact that some people actually think like this. Do they not realise that the state employ people to collect litter and also others to clean the road and by throwing in on the ground you are merely making it look shitter and this thing we call an environment head further towards a rubbish tip? Once again these opinions lead only to the conclusion that a lack of decent free education for the entire world will probably end up being the end of us all...

As for me... I think maybe it's time we let the Dolphins have a crack at being in charge... I don't think they could possibly fuck up what's left of this planet any more than we already have... I mean I would sooner vote for Flipper any day over George Bush or David Cameron, solely down to the fact that Flipper talks more sense when he/she shrills. Maybe it's better that we leave a more intelligent species in charge for a while.

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