Friday, February 24, 2006

A Messi Affair

Amid the infinite tedium and hype of modern football, the inflated egos and inflated salaries, the hyberbolic managers, and the pampered players, there is still, from time to time, some magic. The performance of young Massi for Barcelona against Chelsea last week was one such moment. Despite Chelsea's cynical ploy of providing a bog instead of a pitch to counteract Barcelona's superior skills, Massi put on a masterclass of attacking skills that suggested George Best in his pomp.

The fuss Mourhino made about del Horno's sending off has to be tongue in cheek. Or else Mourinho is less intelligent than I assumed. It was very clear that del Horno made no attempt to play the ball and just charged stright into Massi. You could see the look of fear on Massi's face as he saw del Horno bearing down on him. He was backing off when the charge hit him. The ball was elsewhere. And then del Horno had the cheek to clutch his neck theatrically as he rolled around on the ground. It was as clear a red card as I've ever seen.

Tuesday, February 21, 2006


The older Irish writers tended to ignore this dictum and leave their best work behind them in the pub. Behan is the most notorious example but Kavanagh and Flann O'Brien weren't far behind. Yeats famously avoided this trap after his single visit to Tomers.

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Trouble at Mosque

This whole thing has been contrived of course. The axe-grinding Danes on the one hand deeming that bowing to multi-culturalism had gone too far and hoping these cartoons would provide welcome catharsis; and the Islamic militants on the other hand using this as a pretext to get the excitable masses wound up and visit violence on the despised West.

And of course the masses are ripe for it now that George Bush as pushed the vast majority of Moslems into an anti-Western lather. It's deeply ironic that a president whose term in office has been defined by the war on terror has in fact alienated the Islamic world to a degree that has rendered the world a far more dangerous place than it was before he took office. His exploits in Afghanistan and Iraq, and his indifference to the plight of Palestine has ensured that we now have a new Cold War between the West and the bulk of the Islamic world. It'll get really interesting when Iran get nuclear weapons.

And the cartoons themselves seem so bland - I did like the one about heaven running out of virgins though.

At least it won't affect Denmark's bacon exports.