Saturday 17 February 2024

Post 499 - More than my gramble's worth

 

Welcome to The Grambler, the most ill-informed blog you are ever likely to see.

Stewart was an amazing person - A wonderful husband, a fantastic brother, a loving son and an adored uncle. He was also a brilliant friend and colleague and is missed by so many people. His family are determined that his death will never be in vain and are doing their part to beat bowel cancer for good. We are fundraising for the Bobby Moore Fund which is part of Cancer Research UK and specialises in research into bowel cancer. If you wish to donate to the fund, you can via The Grambler’s Kick Cancer’s Backside (cancerresearchuk.org).

If you haven’t already done so, please read the article which appeared in the Daily Record and learn from Stewart’s story that you must never be complacent. It makes grim reading for us, his family, even though we were beside him throughout his ordeal, or battle; call it what you will. http://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/lifestyle/heartbroken-widow-geraldine-smith-raises-3452997

Stewart began writing The Grambler when he was between procedures and hoping for some form of recovery. He loved all aspects of football and was a lifelong Motherwell supporter. His wish was that The Grambler should continue after his death and I have been happy to oblige. Read on and enjoy

 

Story Time...

You may be wondering how I come up with different topics to enlighten you week in, week out. Or you may be wondering why I bother writing such drivel inventive material, in the first place. I get inspiration from the oddest places and this week’s topic was prompted by watching an old situation comedy from the 1990s. Why? Pull up a chair and I’ll tell ee...

The programme’s name isn’t important, but a certain comedy trope is. You see, during this show, our lead female character goes for a job interview. As is standard with sitcom portrayals of such interviews, the interviewee (our heroine) is sat on a chair in the middle of a large office while three severe-looking interviewers ‘interrogate’ her. The comedy comes from the interviewee’s discomfort and her attempts at answers being spectacularly wrong.

It is a comedy scene that has been played out in sitcoms, probably from the birth of sitcoms themselves. A would-be employee goes for an interview under-prepared and the interview panel comprises three or more forbidding-looking people asking questions to trip the applicant up. The applicant is always portrayed as being terrified by the experience and always gives silly or wrong answers to the questions being asked. The meeting can end in two ways. The first is that the applicant leaves the interview almost in tears because of the way they screwed up and failed to get the job. The second is that the applicant knows they have screwed up totally, but, in the old switcheroony comedy technique, is offered the job by an impressed panel of interviewers.

As I said at the start, it is a comedy trope that has been utilised in dozens, if not hundreds, of sitcoms.

It made me think back to some of the interviews I went to when I was of working age. I tended to go for interviews feeling quite nervous, especially if I was applying for a job that I really wanted. Strange that, eh?

Anyway, usually I was interviewed by one person, so there wasn’t that interrogation approach. I generally felt quite relaxed at these. Maybe I didn’t always get offered the job, but I did at least feel that the interview went well.

Sometimes, I knew immediately that I probably wouldn’t get the job. Before a word had been spoken, I knew. This was all to do with the way my hand was shaken as I entered the interview room. Not in the right club. Oh well.

Only on one occasion did I encounter the panel of five people facing me. I should have felt intimidated by this, but I wasn’t. I am an awkward so-and-so by nature and my way of dealing with the situation was this: I told myself that I wasn’t impressed with this company because it wasted far too much time and effort on interviewing people, so I didn’t really want whatever job was on offer. In other words, why the hell were five people using valuable time interviewing me when they should have been doing something more important, like actual work? As it was, I was the one wasting their time. Time for some fun.

I probably did feel a bit nervous, initially, but my attitude soon changed from fear to... bravado seems an appropriate word.

Questions were thrown at me such as ‘What might you change if you came to work with us?’

Answer: ‘I think I’d consider your interviewing setup. I hate overmanning.’

Question: ‘What would you say was your worst feature?’

Answer: ‘You ought to know that is not a question for an interview. Who is going to answer that one honestly?’

Question: ‘Where do you see yourself in five years time?’

Answer: ‘From what I’ve seen so far, working somewhere else.’

And so it went on. I was just winding them up, of course; I really didn’t want to work there. So it came as a bit of a shock that a letter (No such thing as emails back then) arrived after a few days offering me the job.

You’ll be pleased to know that, in true awkward b*gg*r style, I turned it down. Although, I may have twisted things a little by saying that. You see, when I was offered the job, I used it as ammunition to get my boss to offer me more money to stay put.

There was method in my madness... Or should that read madness in my method? Why? Let’s face it, my manager could just as easily have told me where to go.

 

.....oooOooo.....

 

Birthday honours...

Let’s move on to the birthday honours, shall we? Were any famous or not so well-known individuals born on the 17th of February? Of course there were. Here are some that even I have heard of.

William Cadbury 1867 - Businessman. He wasn’t the founder of the Cadbury confectioners, that was his grandfather. However, it was he who ‘designed’ the Cadbury logo in 1905 which is still used today and is basically the script he used to write his name.

Marjorie Fielding 1892 - Actress. Mrs Chalk in The Lavendar Hill Mob.

Clifford Evans 1912 - Actor. Caswell Bligh in The Power Game.

Ron Goodwin 1925 - Composer. Shall we have a clip? Yes, let’s. He wrote many scores for films such as Those Magnificent Men in Their Flying Machines (now better known as the introduction music for the Radio 4 comedy quiz I’m Sorry I Haven’t a Clue) and Monte Carlo or Bust as well as the music behind the Margaret Rutherford as Miss Marple films. He also wrote the music which the Beeb Beeb Ceeb use whenever the London Marathon is televised. Here, however, is arguably his most famous work... and I make no apologies for repeating the link from this week six years back..., 633 Squadron.  Did you spot Angus Lennie aka Hughie McPhee from Crossroads?

Patricia Routledge 1929 - Actress. Hyacinth Bucket in Keeping Up Appearances. She sings, as well. Here’s And I Was Beautiful.

Philip Latham 1929 - Actor. Arthur Bourne in The Cedar Tree.

Ruth Rendell 1930 - Authoress. She created Inspector Wexford and wrote 24 novels featuring the character. ITV later dramatised the books and made 48 episodes of The Ruth Rendell Mysteries.

Alan Bates 1934 - Actor. Michael Henchard in The Mayor of Casterbridge.

John Leyton 1936 - Actor and singer. William Dickes, ‘Tunnel King’ in The Great Escape. Also, he had a number one record. Here’s that song, Johnny, Remember Me.

Benjamin Whitrow 1937 - Actor. Robert Douglas in Chancer.

Julia McKenzie 1941 - Actress. Mrs Forrester in Cranford.

Nick Hewer 1944 - TV presenter.

Bernie Grant 1944 - Politician.

Karl Jenkins 1944 - Musician. One time member of Soft Machine. Here’s a track he wrote and played on, Nettle Bed.

Lynn Dalby 1947 - Actress. Hazel Fletcher in Budgie.

Malcolm Rennie 1947 - Fraser in Mr Selfridge.

Prunella Gee 1950 - Actress. Patricia in Never Say Never Again. Factoid: She was the first person to be seen fully naked on British television when she appeared in Shabby Tiger in 1973.

 

I don’t even like tigers

Michael Marra 1952 - Musician. Here’s a song about a Sunday practice in certain parts of Scotland. Chain Up The Swings.

Norman Pace 1953 - Comedian. Half of 1980s’ popular duo, Hale and Pace.

Malcolm Wilson 1956 - Rally drivery bloke.

Angela and Maria Eagle 1961 - Political twins.

Jeremy Edwards 1971 - Actor. Kurt Benson in Hollyoaks.

Lucy Davis 1973 - Dianne in Shaun of the Dead.

Rory Kinnear 1978 - Actor. Michael Baker in Count Arthur Strong.

Rebecca Adlington 1989 - Swimmy bloke.

Bonnie Wright 1991 - Actress. Ginny Weasley in the Harry Potter series of films.

Ed Sheeran 1991 - Rather successful singer/songwriter. Shall we have a clip? Why not. Here’s an apt song for this blog, A Beautiful Game.

 

 

 

 

 

I’ve received a letter...

Dear (the late) Ron Gramblewin,

I believe I am not alone in saying it was so nice to hear one of your, I believe, stirring tunes in this week’s blog. I believe you also wrote the score for the 1969 film Battle of Britain which I believe was called Luftwaffe March but was later given a less warlike name which I believe was more acceptable to the Royal Airforce Band who, I believe, enjoy playing it. Do you know what its new title was?

Yours believably,

A. Sess-High.

 

.....oooOooo.....

 

Gramble time...

How did our last bet with Blorkdaes fare? We won... and lost. Yet again. Could it be worse than last time? Yes it could. 70 pees back from our £2.20 stake. Jeezo! What happened? Read on.

 

Luton vs Sheffield - Home win

Result - Luton Town 1 Sheffield United 3

Wha

Cameron Archer beat Gabriel Osho for pace on the right flank and slotted into the bottom corner before James McAtee converted from the penalty spot as the Blades led by two league goals for the first time this season.

Carlton Morris got one back for Luton, scoring a spot-kick shortly after the break.

Vini Souza restored United's two-goal cushion with a well-struck finish 18 minutes from time.

 

Spurs vs Brighton - Home win

Result - Tottenham Hotspur 2 Brighton and Hove Albion 1

Yay!

Brennan Johnson scored deep into additional time to deliver a come-from-behind Premier League victory for Tottenham against Brighton.

Brighton's Pascal Gross opened the scoring from the penalty spot after Danny Welbeck had been fouled by Micky van de Ven, sending goalkeeper Guglielmo Vicario the wrong way.

Tottenham responded well to falling behind, creating a raft of chances, but Jason Steele made several good saves to deny the in-form Richarlison and Dejan Kulusevski, while James Maddison curled narrowly wide.

The momentum remained firmly in Spurs' favour when the second half got under way with Rodrigo Bentancur, Maddison and Timo Werner attempting efforts at goal as the majority of the action took place deep in Brighton territory.

They continued to probe and that pressure eventually told when Pape Matar Sarr latched on to a lovely through ball from Kulusevski before finishing at the second attempt after his initial shot was deflected on to the post.

Captain Son Heung-min was introduced after the equaliser and the forward had a major hand in the winning goal as he laid the ball across goal for Johnson to convert.

 

Wolves vs Brentford - Home win

Result - Wolverhampton Wanderers 0 Brentford 2

I don’t believe it!

Ivan Toney scored his third goal in four Premier League games as Brentford clinched a deserved victory over misfiring Wolves at Molineux.

Christian Norgaard put the Bees ahead just after the half hour with a close-range header from a corner.

Craig Dawson thought he had equalised with a glancing header only for the Video Assistant Referee to determine he was in an offside position.

Toney secured the three points 13 minutes before the final whistle with a crisp finish from Vitaly Janelt's low cross.

 

Lincoln vs Fleetwood - Home win

Result - Lincoln City 2 Fleetwood Town 1

That’s more like it!

Promise Omochere (Cracking name of the week, for sure.) fired the Cod Army in front, but the game was turned on its head when Bosun Lawal was sent off for a second bookable offence in first-half stoppage time at Sincil Bank.

The game sprung into live when Omochere nipped between the defence and Lukas Jensen to poke the visitors ahead.

Lawal was booked twice in seven minutes to be shown a red card. First he felled Ed Bishop and was then sent off for his part in a melee.

Lincoln took full advantage as Ben House rose highest to head home Reeco Hackett-Fairchild's cross.

And four minutes later Hackett-Fairchild stood up another cross which fell kindly for Lasse Sorensen to smash home.

Conor McGrandles could have put the game to bed but was denied by a super Jay Lynch save.

 

Blackpool vs Oxford - Home win

Result - Blackpool 1 Oxford United 1

Ooh! ’It the woodwork!

The Tangerines led through a goal from Matt Pennington in the first half, but Mark Harris got the visitors back level three minutes later.

A header from Pennington opened the scoring in the 18th minute after Blackpool captain Ollie Norburn found the centre-back from an Albie Morgan corner.

Oxford were quickly level when Elliot Moore set up Harris to finish from close range following a scramble in the Blackpool box.

The U's continued their pressure and Harris was denied a second after his goal-bound shot was impressively blocked by defender Marvin Ekpiteta.

Oxford went within inches of an 87th-minute winner but Billy Bodin's header struck the woodwork (See? Told you.).

Two out of five seems to be the best The Grambler can muster these days. Come on, Grambler, pull your computery equivalent of socks up. What has he/she/it randomly predicted this week.

Game - Result - Odds

Newcastle vs Burnley - Home win - 10/11

Norwich vs Cardiff - Home win - 5/6

Swansea vs Ipswich - Away win - 10/11

Bristol vs QPR - Home win - 20/21

Derby vs Stevenage - Home win - 20/23

Well, the bets look okay on paper [On a computer screen, surely. - Ed.] but I can see a few upsets; probably a draw or two. No matter, the bets have been placed - Ten 20 pee doubles plus a single 20 pee accumulator. If the results go as predicted by The Grambler, the Bobby Moore Fund will be richer to the tune of a whopping

£12.06

A whole 4 pees whoppinger than last week.  Whoop de doo.

 

.....oooOooo.....

 

Teaser time...

Yay! How did you get on with the five teasers set last time? Here are the answers.

1. Who am I?

I was born in Redbridge, England in 1999. I am a right back and have been at Chelsea throughout my senior career, apart from a loan spell at Wigan Athletic. I have been capped for England 16 times. A big clue to my identity is that I am currently Chelsea’s captain.

Answer - Reece James

2. Which current Premier League club beat the cup holders Arsenal in the League Cup Final of 1988?

Answer - Luton Town

3. Which Scot was named Middlesbrough player of the year in 2010 and 2012?

Answer - Barry Robson (Gissa job)

4. Which Nigerian has made the most Premier League appearances?

Answer - Shola Ameobi

5. Which club plays it’s home games at Sixfields Stadium?

Answer - Northampton Town

Shall we have five for this week? Aye, go on, then.

1. Who am I?

I was born in Essen, Germany in 1996. A winger, I began my senior career at Schalke 04 before moving to Manchester City for a reported £37 million fee. In 2020, I signed for my present club, Bayern Munich for 60 million euros. I have been capped for Germany 59 times.

2. Which South African player has made the most Premier League appearances?

3. How many current Premier League clubs do not have animals on their crest?

4. Which was the last club outside the top flight to reach an F.A. Cup Final?

5. At what stadium did Derby County play their home games before moving to Pride Park?

There you have it. Have fun trying to work that lot out. As always, try and answer them before shouting out Hey Googly, Syria or Alexis. Please feel free to pass on the link to your pals so that they can enjoy The Grambler’s footy teasers too.

 

.....oooOooo.....

 

Remember the serious message...

As usual (at the risk of repeating myself), I remind you of the main reason for continuing to publish this blog – to raise awareness about bowel cancer. If you have any bowel problems, don’t be fobbed off with the line that you are too young for bowel cancer to be a consideration. Just point your doctor in the direction of (the already mentioned) Never Too Young | Bowel Cancer UK

 

.....oooOooo.....

 

Please, take a few minutes to watch an informative little video from Mersh (a great friend of Stewart’s).

Click on this link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=26HWQXMalX4. The amount quoted is miles out of date. The total raised for the Bobby Moore Fund now stands at...

£75,330

 

…..oooOooo…..

 

And Finally...

And finally, Cyril? And finally, Esther, I am grateful to a Miss P. Routledge who finishes off this week’s edition. Yes, I know you’ve already had an item from her as a singer, but I always enjoyed her as the character Kitty from Victoria Wood: As Seen on TV. So, here is a little clip from that mid 1980s show. The sketch was written by Victoria Wood and Dame Patricia plays her to perfection, but I wonder if Roy Clarke, the creator of Keeping Up Appearances saw the makings of Hyacinth Bucket in Kitty. Do you agree?

 

That’s all for this week folks, but remember you can read the musings of The Grambler every week (well, most weeks) by going to the blog at www.thegrambler.com where you can also catch up on any previous editions you may have missed.

 

Happy grambling.

 

Saturday 10 February 2024

Post 498 - Another hairy gramble

 

Welcome to The Grambler, the most ill-informed blog you are ever likely to see.

Stewart was an amazing person - A wonderful husband, a fantastic brother, a loving son and an adored uncle. He was also a brilliant friend and colleague and is missed by so many people. His family are determined that his death will never be in vain and are doing their part to beat bowel cancer for good. We are fundraising for the Bobby Moore Fund which is part of Cancer Research UK and specialises in research into bowel cancer. If you wish to donate to the fund, you can via The Grambler’s Kick Cancer’s Backside (cancerresearchuk.org).

If you haven’t already done so, please read the article which appeared in the Daily Record and learn from Stewart’s story that you must never be complacent. It makes grim reading for us, his family, even though we were beside him throughout his ordeal, or battle; call it what you will. http://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/lifestyle/heartbroken-widow-geraldine-smith-raises-3452997

Stewart began writing The Grambler when he was between procedures and hoping for some form of recovery. He loved all aspects of football and was a lifelong Motherwell supporter. His wish was that The Grambler should continue after his death and I have been happy to oblige. Read on and enjoy

 

Story Time...

Do you remember in my last story time I told you that the topic would be continued? I did. At the end. Do you remember? I wrote ‘to be continued’. No? You must have forgotten. I suppose it was rather a long time ago. Three weeks, no less. Anyway, here, finally, is that continuation.

I was commenting on male footballers insistence on wearing ever sillier head toppings known as hair. When I were a lad [Uh oh. Hovis time. - Ed.] men’s hair tended to have a uniformity to it. It would be cut tidily and generally one player’s haircut was similar to another’s. Of course, there were those that couldn’t cope with premature baldness who would try to disguise the fact that they had no hair on top. Even today, a certain dreadful combover style is known as a ‘Bobby Charlton’. Thankfully, such misguided vanity is rare these days.

Any road up, the point I was going to make was that way back then, it was women who had different hairstyles ranging from crop top to long flowing locks. Have you seen a women’s football team these days? They all wear their hair the same. It is longish and tied back in a ponytail. That’s it. The standard style.

It seems that it is now the men, and I’m talking footballers here, who want to spend an inordinate amount of time at a hairdresser. How long does it take for these overpaid and vain primadonnas to get their weird and wonderful hair styles?

One style that I forgot to mention last week was the propensity (That’s a good word; wonder what it means.) of players who have long hair to now have what is known as an undercut. In other words, the hair on the top of the head is kept long, but below a horizontal line just above the ear it is cropped. They then pile the long hair on top of the head in a top-knot.

The first high-profile player to adopt this odd look was Gareth Bale, but I reckon Leeds defender Luke Ayling got there first. In recent times the style has been copied by many others and I doubt if it is because of Bale or Ayling’s influence; I would say that it has been popularised by Manchester City’s goal machine Erling Haaland. Perhaps lesser quality players think they will play better if they adopt his style.

It reminds me of the tale of Samson and Delilah, where he lost his strength when he went to the barber’s. Sorry to tell you lads, but Samson/Haaland’s abilities had/have nothing to do with their long locks; so why don’t you stop looking like a complete tw*t and have a haircut.

There’s more. Some of this following the herd culture seems to have rubbed off onto football managers. Sorry pardon excuse me? Manchester City's Pep Guardiola started it; others have followed. There is now a football manager look. There is. Take a look at a lot of managers out there and you will see it. It is that the head is shaven, but there is a shortish beard.

Last time out, I said that Alejandro Garnacho had an odd hairstyle but, sticking with Manchester City personnel, let’s not forget that individual with perhaps the daftest hairstyle around at the moment: Jack Grealish. What does he think he looks like with that hairband?

The sad thing is that, like the Ronaldo tale I told you, young boys want to copy their hero and are adopting this silly-looking style, complete with hairband.

Either that, or they are just getting in touch with their feminine side. [I don’t think wokedom allows such comments nowadays so, apologies to any touchy buggers who might have been offended by this article. - Ed.]

 

.....oooOooo.....

 

Birthday honours...

Let’s move on to the birthday honours, shall we? Were any famous or not so well-known individuals born on the 27th of January? Of course there were. Here are some that even I have heard of.

Wolfgang Mozart 1756 - Composer. Known as a child prodigy, here is a piece he is supposed to have composed at the age of six.

Charles Lutwidge Dodgson aka Lewis Carroll 1832 - Author. Wrote the Alice books. You know, the stories about the little girl who went on some unusual adventures. [More like trips, I reckon. - Ed.]

Edward Smith 1850 - Captain of the R.M.S. Titanic.

George Relph 1888 - Actor. Sam Weech in The Titfield Thunderbolt.

Michael Ripper 1913 - Jobbing actor. Thomas in Butterflies. In a film and TV career lasting some 60 years, he notched up 246 credits on IMDb.

Brian Rix 1924 - Ector-manager, luvvie. Famous for his Whitehall farces and dropping his trousers a lot.

 

Anyone know where I left my trousers?


Fritz Spiegl 1926 - Musician, journalist, writer, broadcaster and humorist. In fact, a right old smarty boots. Did you know he came up with the Radio 4 UK Theme? Did you care? Well, here it is, anyway.

Michael Craig 1928 - Jobbing actor. Captain John Anderson in 78 episodes of the ill-fated Triangle, a soap-opera based on a North Sea Ferry. [You could say it disappeared without trace. Ha! - Ed.] No, I don’t think I’ll bother.

John Ogdon 1937 - Pianist and composer. Would you like a little clip? Yes? Okay, here is this week’s wee bit cult'yer.

David Yallop 1937 - Writer.

Doug Baillie 1937 - Fitba guy and sports journalist. He was also one of the nicest people I have ever met.

Kevin Coyne 1944 - Musician. Have another clip. Here’s Marlene.

Chester Barnes 1947 - Table-tennisy bloke.

Derek Acorah 1950 - TV spiritual medium. In other words a charlatan. If he wants to sue me for saying that, I will apologise. Otherwise, he remains a charlatan (albeit a dead one).

Alex Norton 1950 - Actor. Eric in Two Doors Down.

Frank Skinner 1957 - Comedian.

Phil Cunningham 1960 - Musician who gets wheeled out and given a rub down with an oily cloth every new year to play his accordian. You want a clip? I’ll see if there is anything out there in the ethernet. This’ll make you think you are at a funeral, here's Abide With Me.

Gillian Gilbert 1961 - Musician. Best known as the keyboardist with New Order. Let’s have another clip. Here’s Confusion.

Mark Moraghan 1963 - Actor. He’s been on loads of stuff like Coronation Street, Holby City and The Bill, but you (or your children) will know him best as the narrator on Thomas and Friends. As an aside, I find it amusing that he recently narrated what I’m guessing is a piss take on his previous train-based voiceover work called Stuff with Talking Trains.

Robbie Earle 1965 - Footy bloke.

Alan Cumming 1965 - Actor. Sebastian Flight in The High Life. That was before he became a favourite luvvie in the States.

Mark Owen 1972 - Singer/songwriter. One fifth, then one quarter and now one third of Take That, a boyband whose members’ ages range from 52 to 55. Hmm. Middle-aged manband doesn’t sound quite right, does it? A clip? Here’s a solo hit called Four Minute Warning.

Lucy Porter 1973 - Comedienne.

Andi Osho 1973 - Comedienne.

Ian Stirling 1988 - Comedien... comedian.

Morgan Gibbs-White 2000 - Footy bloke.

And now... the 3rd of February.

Flora MacLeod of MacLeod 1878 - Clan chief.

Doris Speed 1899 - Actress. Annie Walker in Coronation Street.

Edward Sinclair 1914 - Actor. Mr. Yeatman (the verger) in Dad’s Army.

Frankie Vaughan 1928 - Singer. Known as ‘Mr Moonlight’ because of Give Me The Moonlight. That’s what used to pass for entertainment. Ye gods!

Molly Parkin 1932 - Artist and self-publicist.

Alex Young 1937 - Fitba guy.

Eric Haydock 1943 - Musician. The original bass guitarist in The Hollies. Let’s have another toon. Here’s I'm Alive.

Royston Vasey aka Roy ‘Chubby’ Brown 1945 - Comedian, it says here.

Stan Webb 1946 - Musician. Frontman of Chicken Shack. Have another clip. Here is one of the first records I ever bought, Tears In The Wind.

Dave Davies 1947 - Musician. A Kink and the first member of that band to have a solo hit and here it is, Death of a Clown.

Tim Friese-Greene 1955 - Musician. He worked with 80s band Talk Talk before working under the name Heligoland. Here is a clip of a more recent work, Melodic Apoptosis, (produced under his own name now) Les Voiles Tournent Encore.  Niiice.

Kirsty Wark 1955 - Journalist and TV presenter.

Lol Tolhurst 1959 - Musician. Founding member of The Cure. A clip? I should say. Here’s the band’s first record to chart... but only in Australia and New Zealand for some reason, Boys Don't Cry.

Paul Venables 1962 - Actor. Jamie in May to December.

Gary Webster 1964 - Actor. Took over from Denis Waterman in Minder, playing the new ‘minder’, Ray.

Nick Hawkins 1965 - Musician. He was a member of Mick Jones’ band Big Audio Dynamite II. I think a clip is in order. Here is The Globe.

Tim Flowers 1967 - Footy bloke.

Darren Peacock 1968 - Footy bloke.

Matt Johnson 1969 - Musician. Keyboardist with Jamiroquai. Let’s have a clip from them. Here’s an early hit, Too Young to Die.

Warwick Davis 1970 - Actor and TV presenter. Willow in Willow (the film and the TV series).

Jayne Middlemiss 1971 - TV and radio presen’er, laik. That was meant to be a Northumbrian accent written down. [Doesn’t really work. - Ed.]

Ben Turner 1981 - Actor. Before heading west to the States, he played Jay Faldren in Casualty.

Maurice Ross 1981 - Fitba guy.

Marcus Tudgay 1983 - Footy bloke.

Peter Pawlett 1991 - Fitba guy.

Adam Reach 1993 - Footy bloke.

And now... the 10th of February.

Samuel Plimsoll 1824 - Politician, but more famous for devising the line on a ship which indicates the maximum safe draught. Would you like a factoid? Canvas sand-shoes are sometimes known as plimsolls. This has nothing to do with the man, but is tenuously connected to the Plimsoll line. The name for the shoe came about because the coloured horizontal band where the upper joins the sole resembles the line on a ship. [How very interesting. Yawn. - Ed.]

George Muff 1877 - Politician. I’ve never actually heard of him but my schoolboy sense of humour came to the fore and I had to include him.

Harold Macmillan 1894 - The well-known prime minister who assured us that we had never had it so good and, do you know what? When I see the current state of Britain, I think he was right.

John Black 1895 - Businessman who ran the Standard Car Company in its years of profitability.

Charles Victor 1896 - Jobbing actor. One of those faces that seemed to be always cropping up in British films of a certain era. Often played unnamed roles such as Customer in Night Club, Garage Owner or, my favourite, Aircraft Spotter on Works Roof.

Rachel Thomas 1905 - Actress, isn’t it. If ever you wanted someone to play a stereotypical Welsh mother or granny, Rachel was your girl. Mrs Nicholas in How Green Was My Valley.

Joyce Grenfell 1910 - Comedienne, singer and actress.

Norm McCabe 1911 - Animator. Worked on the Merry Melodies and Looney Tunes cartoon series. Not all his work would be acceptable nowadays, especially his wartime work such as The Ducktators, Confusions of a Nutzy Spy and Tokio Jokio.

Phyllis Dixey 1914 - Singer and erotic dancer. Don’t ask me how I know of her, I just do.

Danny Blanchflower 1926 - Foody blook, so he was.

John Ringham 1928 - Jobbing actor. Mr Warrender in Just Good Friends. 204 credits on IMDb.

Gordon Pirie 1931 - Long-distance runnery bloke.

Barrie Ingham 1932 - Actor. Joe Hine in Hine. Ask your dad.

Donald Burton 1934 - Actor. Ackerman in Big Breadwinner Hog. Ask your dad, again.

James Alexander Gordon 1936 - Radio broadcaster. Famous for reading the classified football results every Saturday at 5pm.

Joss Naylor 1936 - Fell runnery bloke.

Peter Purves 1939 - Actor and TV presenter. Most famous as a presenter of Blue Peter.

Mary Rand 1940 - Runny bloke.

Hamish Imlach 1940 - Folky. Here’s a song for smokers.

John Hampshire 1941 - Crickety bloke.

Michael Apted 1941 - TV and film director. He directed such gems as Gorillas in the Mist and The World Is Not Enough, but did you know he learned his trade on Coronation Street back in 1967?

Clifford T. Ward 1944 - Singer/songwriter. Have a clip. Here’s Home Thoughts From Abroad.

Michael Keating 1947 - Actor. Vila Restal in Blake’s 7.

Nicholas Owen 1947 - TV and radio presenter.

Jimmy Rimmer 1948 - Footy bloke.

Nigel Olsson 1949 - Drummer. He has drummed for Elton John since 1971 and has played over 2000 concerts in that time. It sounds a lot but it averages out at around 40 per year; not a bad way to make a living. He’s made a few solo records too. Here’s Say Goodbye to Hollywood.

Carol Royle 1954 - Actress. Laura Collins in The Cedar Tree. Ask your mum this time.

Briony McRoberts 1957 - Actress. Sam Hagan in Take the High Road.

Billy Thomson 1958 - Fitba guy. Ex-Motherwell, you know.

Michael McKell 1959 - Actor. Dr. Nick West in Doctors.

Robert Addie 1960 - Actor. Mordred in Excalibur.

Alan McInally 1963 - Fitba guy.

Philip Glenister 1963 - Actor. DCI Gene Hunt in Life on Mars and Ashes to Ashes.

Andrew Carthy aka Mr. Scruff 1972 - Record producer and DJ. Let’s get a move on.

Helen Willets 1972 - TV meteorologist.

Claire Goose 1975 - Actress. Amelia Silver in Waking the Dead.

Keeley Hawes 1976 - Actress. Barbara Stonehouse in Stonehouse.

Michael Hart 1980 - Fitba guy.

Andrew Johnson 1981 - Footy bloke.

Barry Sloane 1981 - Actor. Chris Fischer in The Bay.

Holly Willoughby 1981 - TV presenter.

Max Brown 1981 - Actor. Michael Summerton in Nolly.

Adam Armstrong 1997 - Footy bloke.

 

 

 

 

I’ve received a letter...

Dear Mr. Grambluff,

I have always been a great fan of your music and have listened to everything you have recorded. Here’s a question for you. What was the very first track on your first album and is its title suitable for a play on my name?

Unreally yours,

C. Mammal.

 

 

.....oooOooo.....

 

Gramble time...

How did our last bet with Blorkdaes fare? We won... and lost. Again. Even worse than last time. 76 pees back from our £2.20 stake. Two pees down on our last gramble. Dearie me. What happened? Read on.

 

Swansea vs Southampton - Away win

Result - Swansea 1 Southampton 3

Yay!

Che Adams put Southampton ahead from close range only six minutes in.

Will Smallbone tapped in the second goal before Swansea responded against the run of play through a Jamie Paterson header.

But Southampton quickly re-established their control of the contest as Flynn Downes' 20-yard drive deflected into the net.

Swansea rallied in the closing stages as substitute Jerry Yates and Paterson both hit the woodwork, but their failure to take the late chances allowed Southampton to hold on for three points with comfort.

 

Stoke vs Birmingham - Home win

Result - Stoke 1 Birmingham 2

Boo!

Jay Stansfield's fine one-on-one finish came after a strong Stoke opening and the hosts continued to dominate possession and pose a considerable threat against the Brummies.

But although Blues keeper John Ruddy had to make a couple of fine saves, the Potters' finishing lacked precision and quality and they were made to pay soon after the restart when Juninho Bacuna found the top corner from 25 yards.

Jordan Thompson pulled a goal back with 20 minutes remaining, the defender tapping the ball in at the far post from Wouter Burger's assist, but persistent pressure could not help Stoke.

Substitutes Tyrese Campbell and Nathan Lowe both spurned decent chances and Ryan Mmaee fired a shot over the bar, but Blues stood firm under the relentless pressure.

 

Plymouth vs Cardiff - Home win

Result - Plymouth 3 Cardiff 1

Yay!

Ryan Hardie scored twice as Plymouth Argyle came from behind to deservedly beat Cardiff City 3-1 at Home Park.

Hardie's double either side of half-time turned the game as he guided the ball home from close range and then powered a finish past Cardiff City goalkeeper Ben Alnwick.

Morgan Whittaker made the points safe as Hardie turned provider and Whittaker slammed the ball home emphatically.

Defender Perry Ng's close-range effort had put Cardiff ahead on 10 minutes.

 

Blackburn vs Huddersfield - Home win

Result - Blackburn 1 Huddersfield 1

Ooh! ’It the bar!

Defender Michal Helik scored to cancel out Adam Wharton's early opener for the Lancashire side.

Rovers got off to a great start courtesy of a gift from Terriers centre-back Jonathan Hogg, who gave the ball straight to Adam Wharton to finish expertly with seven minutes on the clock.

The home side sought to drive home the advantage as Sam Gallagher saw a shot deflected into the side netting.

Huddersfield, however, took advantage. Rhys Healey tested Rovers goalkeeper Aynsley Pears and from the resulting Sorba Thomas corner Helik glanced his header into the far corner of the net.

Gallagher appealed loudly for a penalty as he ran through onto a Sammie Szmodics pass and had his heels clipped, but it was the visitors who missed the best chance to grab all three points as a swift counter-attack saw Josh Koroma run through and square for Jack Rudoni, who sliced his shot from five yards out.

Pears had to be sharp to deny Bojan Radulovic, David Kasumu dragged his shot wide after another counter had exposed Blackburn's leaking defence and then Helik almost bagged another with a fine volley that looped across the box and narrowly past the far post.

Lincoln vs Derby - Away win

Result - Lincoln 0 Derby 0

Ooh! ’It the bar again!

Rams goalkeeper Josh Vickers produced a string of fine saves to deny the hosts a win.

Nathaniel Mendez-Laing came closest for Derby in the early stages as he fired into the side-netting.

Ethan Hamilton forced Vickers into a good save to tip his strike past the post while at the other end, Lukas Jensen did well to keep out James Collins' effort at the near post.

Vickers again needed his wits about him to deny Reeco Hackett-Fairchild.

After the break, the visitors were indebted to Eiran Cashin as he cleared Joe Taylor's effort off the line after Vickers got a touch on it.

Taylor was again thwarted by the inspired County keeper as the spoils were shared.

 

Hmm... Not so good. Can The Grambler come up with anything better, this week?

Game - Result - Odds

Luton vs Sheffield - Home win - 8/11

Spurs vs Brighton - Home win - 3/4

Wolves vs Brentford - Home win - 21/20

Lincoln vs Fleetwood - Home win - Evens

Blackpool vs Oxford - Home win - 19/20

 

The bets have been placed - Ten 20 pee doubles plus a single 20 pee accumulator. If the results go as predicted by The Grambler, the Bobby Moore Fund will be richer to the tune of a whopping

£12.02

A bit more whopping than recent weeks.

 

.....oooOooo.....

 

Teaser time...

Yay! How did you get on with the five teasers set last time? Here are the answers.

1. Who am I?

I was born in Coventry in 1992. A striker, I began my senior career at Coventry City where I scored 22 goals in 49 appearances. In 2014, I moved to AFC Bournemouth, scoring 61 in 171 appearances. In 2020, I moved to my current club, Newcastle and have, so far, netted 45 times in 89 appearances. I have also been capped for England nine times.

Answer - Callum Wilson

2. Which player was sold by Chelsea in 2019 for £89 million?

Answer - Eden Hazard

3. Which club lost the League Cup Final against Liverpool in 1983 and 2003?

Answer - Manchester United

4. Who is Leeds United’s all-time highest goalscorer?

Answer - Peter Lorimer (238)

5. Which English club plays its home games at Gresty Road?

Answer - Crewe Alexandria (I wonder how many fans use it’s new sponsor-led name of Mornflake Stadium)

How did you get on? Five out of five? Brilliant. How about five more for this week?

1. Who am I?

I was born in Redbridge, England in 1999. I am a right back and have been at Chelsea throughout my senior career, apart from a loan spell at Wigan Athletic. I have been capped for England 16 times. A big clue to my identity is that I am currently Chelsea’s captain.

2. Which current Premier League club beat the cup holders Arsenal in the League Cup Final of 1988?

3. Which Scot was named Middlesbrough player of the year in 2010 and 2012?

4. Which Nigerian has made the most Premier League appearances?

5. Which club plays it’s home games at Sixfields Stadium?

There you have it. Have fun trying to work that lot out. As always, try and answer them before shouting out Hey Googly, Syria or Alexis. Please feel free to pass on the link to your pals so that they can enjoy The Grambler’s footy teasers too.

 

.....oooOooo.....

 

Remember the serious message...

As usual (at the risk of repeating myself), I remind you of the main reason for continuing to publish this blog – to raise awareness about bowel cancer. If you have any bowel problems, don’t be fobbed off with the line that you are too young for bowel cancer to be a consideration. Just point your doctor in the direction of (the already mentioned) Never Too Young | Bowel Cancer UK


.....oooOooo.....

 

Please, take a few minutes to watch an informative little video from Mersh (a great friend of Stewart’s).

Click on this link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=26HWQXMalX4. The amount quoted is miles out of date. The total raised for the Bobby Moore Fund now stands at...

£75,330

 

…..oooOooo…..

 

And Finally...

And finally, Cyril? And finally, Esther, I am grateful to a Ms. J. Grenfell who provides us with this week’s final item. Joyce Grenfell was one of the first comedians I knew as a child. At the age of four I laughed at her comedy nursery teacher telling George not to do that. At that age, I had no idea what George was doing to be continually told not to; I just found it hilarious. Still do, over 60 years later (Yes, I am that old.). Any road up, it’s a month or two too late, but here is her take on a nativity play.

 

 

 

 

That’s all for this week folks, but remember you can read the musings of The Grambler every week (well, most weeks) by going to the blog at www.thegrambler.com where you can also catch up on any previous editions you may have missed.

 

Happy grambling.

 

Saturday 20 January 2024

Post 497 - A hair-raising gramble

Welcome to The Grambler, the most ill-informed blog you are ever likely to see.

Stewart was an amazing person - A wonderful husband, a fantastic brother, a loving son and an adored uncle. He was also a brilliant friend and colleague and is missed by so many people. His family are determined that his death will never be in vain and are doing their part to beat bowel cancer for good. We are fundraising for the Bobby Moore Fund which is part of Cancer Research UK and specialises in research into bowel cancer. If you wish to donate to the fund, you can via The Grambler’s Kick Cancer’s Backside (cancerresearchuk.org).

If you haven’t already done so, please read the article which appeared in the Daily Record and learn from Stewart’s story that you must never be complacent. It makes grim reading for us, his family, even though we were beside him throughout his ordeal, or battle; call it what you will. http://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/lifestyle/heartbroken-widow-geraldine-smith-raises-3452997

Stewart began writing The Grambler when he was between procedures and hoping for some form of recovery. He loved all aspects of football and was a lifelong Motherwell supporter. His wish was that The Grambler should continue after his death and I have been happy to oblige. Read on and enjoy

 

Story Time...

Those of you who are old enough to have lived through the 70s and 80s will probably remember the time when footballers began a trend that has persisted to this day. And what trend is that, I hear you ask. The desire to look ridiculous, I answer. Sorry pardon excuse me? Let me explain. It was around that time, all those years ago that footballers eschewed the fashions of the time to pursue their own ‘style’. Yes, at a time when teenagers and young men ceased to wear their hair long and took on the shorter-haired punk look, footballers kept their long locks. Not only that, they had their hair permed. Yep, think of the style your bubble-bonced granny had; that was what footballers looked like. Without the wrinkles, of course.

Why did they adopt this style? Well, it was in vogue a little bit. Perhaps you remember the Brady Bunch where all the blokes had permed hair for some odd reason. The footy guys can’t all have been fans of a cheesy ‘honey I’m home’ American sitcom, surely. No, the reason was money... and don’t call me Shirley. [It’s a while since you’ve done that old favourite. - Ed.] Having your hair permed cost money. Lots of it. What did footballers have? Money, and lots of it. Why not spend some of this dosh on expensive (but daft-looking) hair-dos.

Since then, footballers have gone through various ‘stylish’ hairstyles. Generally, only a few guys went all out to look outrageous... think Taribo West, Paul Pogba and Barry Venison... but most looked fairly average.

Of course, footballers found other ways to waste their hard-earned dosh; tattoos, for example. Why? I have no idea. However, lately, I have noted that crazy hairstyles have made a serious comeback. Over the past five years, it seemed that huge Brian Blessed type beards were footballers’ means of expressing ‘style’ and looking silly, but now daft hairstyles are back. Yay!

We have the wide Mohican style which, to me, resembles a slightly small forage cap perched on the head. It is popular, certainly, but not particularly odd-looking. No, the crazy footballer fashion of the moment is the desire to have the hair braided. Now, to me, anyone over the age of 12 should not have their hair braided. Even then, only girls aged 12 or less should adopt such a style. Boys? Most definitely not.

So why do footballers now want to look like girls aged less than 12? Money. Again. Having hair braided is a time-consuming, expensive business. Obviously, the footy blokes who are adopting this ridiculous look have no space left for tattoos, so who else can they throw armfuls of money at? Hairdressers... well, hair braiders.

Perhaps they think they are being ‘individual’. The trouble seems to be that every footballer and his brother now want to have braided hair. [I thought you said some had a forage cap. - Ed.] Point taken. But where is any individuality they might crave? Forget it. Take a look in the mirror. You’ve all got the same hairstyle. [Unless they have that other style. - Ed.] All right, you’ve made your point.

Okay, braided hair looks pretty daft in itself, but the daftest of the lot had to be one particular, high-profile, player (his name sounds a bit like Straheem Rerling) whose hair wasn’t quite long enough to be braided. What did he do? He came on to the field of play with... what are those? Surely not. He’s got bloody hair grips in. What a tw*t!

Not everyone has hair that can be braided and perhaps doesn’t want a wide mohican mop. There is still room for the occasional curve-ball hairdo. Remember Ronaldo back in 2002? He looked as if he had started to shave his head and forgot the bit at the front. And do you know what? It was deliberate. He thought, I’ll give the lads at training a bit of a laugh. Unfortunately, he was photographed with his half-finished hairdo and his image went viral. Before he could tell the world it was only a joke, thousands of Brazilian kids, who idolised him, had adopted his ‘new look’. He felt obliged to keep the silly hairdo, if only to appease those kids and, presumably, the parents who had been inveigled into letting them follow the style of their football hero.

Anyway, we have a new crazy haircut guy... Witness, a certain Manchester United player who has obviously based his look on that of a certain 1970s piano-playing singer songwriter.

Alejandro Garnacho

Gilbert O'Sullivan



To be continued...

 

.....oooOooo.....

 

Birthday honours...

Let’s move on to the birthday honours, shall we? Were any famous or not so well-known individuals born on the 13th of January? Of course there were. Here are some that even I have heard of.

Alfred Yarrow 1842 - Industrialist who began Yarrow Shipbuilders.

Richard Addinsell 1904 - Composer. Here’s a piece you will perhaps recognise; it was written for the 1941 film Dangerous Moonlight and goes by the title Warsaw Concerto.

Ted Willis 1918 - Screenwriter. Best known for writing the BBC police series Dixon of Dock Green. Mind how you go. Ask your grandad.

Allan Prior 1922 - Screenwriter. Best known for writing the BBC police series Z Cars. Hang on a mo...

John Hewer 1922 - Actor. Never heard of him? He was best known for sailing a ship crewed by young children and paying them only with fish fingers. Called himself Captain Birdseye.

Jack Watling 1923 - Actor. Don Henderson in The Power Game. Ask your grandad again

Ron Tauranac 1925 - Engineer and racing car designer. Co-founded the Brabham constructor team with Jack.

Michael Bond 1926 - Writer. Creator of Paddington Bear.

Ian Hendry 1931 - Actor. Dr. David Keel in The Avengers. Ask the old’un again.

Carol Cleveland 1942 - Actress. Famous for being the only female member of the Monty Python team.

John Lees 1947 - Musician who formed the band Barclay James Harvest back in 1966. The band is still active. Actually, that’s not strictly true. The two surviving members, Lees and Les Holroyd, have parted company, but both still tour with bands using the BJH name. In the red corner, we have John Lees’ Barclay James Harvest and in the blue corner, we have Barclay James Harvest featuring Les Holroyd. I’m guessing the two don’t get on these days. Anyway, history lesson over; let’s have a clip. Here’s their ‘tribute’ to the Beatles called Titles.  I'm guessing that was written with tongue firmly in cheek.

Malcolm Storry 1948 - Actor. ‘Dogfood’ Dan Milton in Dogfood Dan and the Carmarthen Cowboy. Er... It was a sitcom about lorry drivers in the days of C. B. radio. Doesn’t make much sense as a title nowadays.

Alex Brychta 1956 - Who? He is an illustrator famous for the Oxford Reading Tree series of books featuring the characters Biff, Chip and Kipper. Apparently, this learn-to-read series is used in 80% of British primary schools.

Mike Bullen 1960 - Screenwriter. Cold Feet, that was his biggie.

Graham McPherson aka Suggs 1961 - Singer/songwriter. Famous as being frontman with the Band, Madness. Here’s his solo number 6, Cecilia. Yes, that was Chris Eubank, the well-known boxy bloke, introducing him.

Mark ‘Bill’ Bailey 1965 - Comedian, musician and actor.

Tom Bradby 1967 - TV journalist and newsreader.

Stephen Hendry 1969 - Snookery bloke.

Orlando Bloom 1977 - Actor. Will Turner in the various Pirates of the Caribbean films.

William Ash 1977 - Actor. Caleb Miligan in Emmerdale.

Katy Brand 1979 - Comedienne, actress and writer.

Des Clarke 1981 - Comedian and radio presenter.

Ruth Wilson 1982 - Actress. Alison Bailey in The Affair.

Matt Stokoe 1989 - Actor. Raoul Moat in The Hunt for Raoul Moat.

Now then, what about the 20th of January? Anyone famous born on that day? Let’s have a look...

Henry Cromwell 1628 - Lord Deputy of Ireland. Ollie’s lad.

Finlay Currie 1878 - Actor. Magwitch in Great Expectations (1946).

Tudor Owen 1898 - Actor. He was in all sorts of things in the fifties and early sixties, but I remember him as a voice artist. Yep. He was Towser in 101 Dalmations.

Clarice Cliff 1899 - Potter.

Colin Clive 1900 - Actor. Henry Frankenstein in Frankenstein (1931) and Bride of Frankenstein (1935).

Fabia Drake 1904 - Actress. Countess of Midlothian in The Pallisers.

Joy Adamson 1910 - Naturalist. She wrote Born Free which was made into the film of the same name.

Roy Plomley 1914 - Radio broadcaster. He is credited with creating Desert Island Discs, a radio programme that has been running since 1942. In that time it has had only five presenters; Plomley running the show from its inception until 1985. He might have carried on, but his death intervened.

Tony Shryane 1919 - Radio producer... He produced programmes, not radios... I’ll get me coat.

Dick Hern 1921 - Race-horse trainer.

Graham Stark 1922 - Comedian, actor, writer and director.

Henry Woolf 1930 - Actor. I recall him from Rutland Weekend Television.

Richard Coleman 1930 - Actor. David Redway in ...And Mother Makes Five.

Gerry Monroe 1933 - Singer. He tended to take old classic songs and, quite frankly, murder them. Here’s an example, the old Gracie Fields classic, Sally.

Tom Baker 1934 - The Doctor.

Frances Shand Kydd 1936 - Princess Diana’s mam.

Neville Buswell 1943 - Actor. Ray Langton in Coronation Street.

Eric Stewart 1945 - Musician. A quarter of 10CC [Two and a half CC, then. - Ed.] A clip? But of course. Here’s the biggie, I'm Not In Love.

Christopher Martin-Jenkins 1945 - Cricket commentatory bloke.

Liza Goddard 1950 - Actress. Victoria in Take Three Girls. It had this rather nice theme song from Pentangle called Light Flight.

Ian Hill 1951 - Musician. He is the longest-serving member of Judas Priest having been there at the start back in 1969. He’s been playing bass with them for 55 years for goodness sake! Would you like a clip? Of course you would. Here’s a song that reached number four in the U.S. of A. but didn’t even get into the Yuk top 40, You've Got Another Thing Comin'.

John Robertson 1953 - Fitba guy.

Janey Godley 1961 - Comedienne.

Chris England 1961 - Writer and actor. He co-wrote An Evening with Gary Lineker.

Sophie Thompson 1962 - Actress. Sheila Seymour in Detectorists.

Sophie, Countess of Wessex 1965 - The well-known royal bloke.

Heather Small 1965 - Singer with a very distinctive voice. Here she is with M People getting a bit Excited.

Colin Calderwood 1965 - Fitba guy.

Nicky Wire 1969 - Musician. Bassist with Manic Street Preachers, but here is a solo track called I Killed the Zeitgeist. [Ooh, I like that one.  Bob Marley... I killed the zeitgeist, but I did not shoot the deputy... - Ed.] No, not that one.

Mitch Benn 1970 - Musician and comedian.

Gary Barlow 1971 - Singer and songwriter most notably with Take That. Shall we have a clip? Yes, why in heaven’s name not. Here’s a newish track, Windows.

Zac Goldsmith 1975 - Politician and journalist, apparently.

Joel Pott 1979 - Musician and songwriter. Frontman for Indie band Athlete but nowadays is better known for his songwriting; for George Ezra among others. Let’s have a jolly toon from his Athlete days. Here’s El Salvador.

Will Young 1979 - Singer, songwriter and actor. Here’s a recent song, Why Does It Hurt.  Probably because you won't stop picking at it.

Owen Hargreaves 1981 - Footy bloke.

Joe Swash 1982 - Actor. Mickey Miller in Eastenders you slaaaag!

Mark Wright 1987 - TV personality it says here.

Paul Hanlon 1990 - Fitba guy.

Tom Cairney 1991 - Footy bloke.

 

 

 

 

 

I’ve received a letter...

Dear Eric Gramblart,

Oh, it was so lovely to hear your lovely song about not being in love. I do recall that your lovely group had a lovely record that reached number before that one, but I can’t remember. It would be lovely if you could remind me.

Yours lovely-ly,

Rob R. Bullits.

PS. - That was some of the worst miming I've ever seen.

 

 

.....oooOooo.....

 

Gramble time...

How did our last bet with Borkdales go? We won... and lost. Again. Even worse than last time. 78 pees back from our £2.20 stake. A whole £1.42 down. Oh dear oh dear. What happened? Read on.

 

Cheltenham vs Portsmouth - Away win

Result - Cheltenham 2 Portsmouth 1

Oh dear. Bad start.

Portsmouth were on top for much of the first half, with Abu Kamara a major threat.

But they failed to seriously test goalkeeper Luke Southwood, who made comfortable saves from Sean Raggett and Marlon Pack.

Kamara had the ball in the net before half-time but the whistle had already been blown for a foul on him and it was ruled out.

Paddy Lane's cross was helped on by Raggett and Tom Bradbury deflected it into his own net under pressure from Colby Bishop to put Pompey ahead.

Portsmouth led for less than two minutes, with Will Ferry's long throw-in hooked in by Liam Sercombe in the 51st minute.

The winner came when George Lloyd dispossessed Conor Shaughnessy in the 54th minute, allowing Sercombe to smash into the roof of the net.

 

Exeter vs Carlisle - Home win

Result - Exeter 2 Carlisle 1

Yay!

The hosts gave a debut to Luke Harris and he twice went close in the first five minutes, while Jordan Gibson was high with a long-range effort for Carlisle.

The best chance of a tame first half fell to Carlisle's Josh Emmanuel, but with only Vili Sinisalo to beat, Zak Jules got back to make an outstanding goal-saving block.

After the break, Exeter's Jack Aitchison saw a shot spilled by Gabe Breeze, but Sonny Cox could not finish off the rebound.

However, the Grecians finally got the goal their play deserved after 57 minutes when Harris' cross fell kindly for Reece Cole and he smashed the ball in from 12 yards.

City were on top now and the second goal duly arrived in the 77th minute when Aitchison's shot struck the base of the post and Cox reacted quickest to turn in the loose ball.

Luke Armstrong hit the post from close range for Carlisle before Dan Butterworth smashed in from 20 yards to give the Cumbrians hope, but despite nine minutes of added time, the Grecians held firm for the win.

 

Barrow vs Tranmere - Home win

Result - Barrow 1 Tranmere 0

Yay again!

Barrow’s Elliot Newby laid off a ball for midfielder Dean Campbell to curl the ball left-footed into the top corner from 18 yards out.

Barrow, however, suffered a later scare before the three points were confirmed when Josh Hawkes struck an upright with a stoppage-time effort.

However, they survived and had a last-minute Kian Spence effort disallowed for offside.

 

Bradford vs Crawley - Home win

Result - Bradford 2 Crawley 4

Oh dear, oh dear

Crawley scored twice in stoppage time to clinch a dramatic 4-2 win at Bradford.

The visitors had been trailing 2-1 before Adam Campbell's 85th-minute equaliser.

They went on to complete a remarkable comeback as Danilo Orsi scored his second goal of the game from the penalty spot after Nick Tsaroulla was tripped by Jon Tomkinson.

Then substitute Klaidi Lolos made it a six-goal thriller with a well-struck finish into the top corner.

Orsi had nodded Crawley ahead after 12 minutes from Tsaroulla's cross.

Corey Addai made a good save in a one-on-one with Tyler Smith to preserve their lead at half-time.

But Bradford's increasing pressure after the break was rewarded when Liam Ridehalgh scored with a chipped cross that floated in at the back post.

The home side then went in front when Addai looked to have saved Andy Cook's penalty but, with Cook steaming in to score the rebound, contrived to push the ball into his own net.

But Campbell equalised from Harry Ransom's cross before the double strike in time added on secured the win for Crawley.

 

Swindon vs Colchester - Home win

Result - Swindon 2 Colchester 2

Ouch! ’It the bar!

Bradley Ihionvien snatched a stoppage-time equaliser to rescue a point for Colchester as they came from 2-0 down to draw 2-2 at Swindon.

Swindon were awarded a penalty after just 17 minutes when Udoka Godwin-Malife was hauled to the ground in the box and Charlie Austin stepped up and blasted his shot down the middle.

Swindon grabbed their second goal before the break as Austin's header went into the path of Tom Brewitt, who smashed the ball into the roof of the net from one yard out.

Matt Jay pulled Colchester back into the game in first-half stoppage time when he met a near-post cross and flicked it into the far corner of the net.

Three minutes after the break, Jay fired a low effort beyond Lewis Ward, but Liam Kinsella blocked the shot on the line.

With almost the last kick of the game, Ward fluffed a punch and allowed Ihionvien to turn home and salvage a draw for the visitors and leave the home fans and The Grambler furious.

 

Right, come on Grambler, give us some decent predictions...

Game - Result - Odds

Swansea vs Southampton - Away win - 4/6

Stoke vs Birmingham - Home win - 20/21

Plymouth vs Cardiff - Home win - 5/4

Blackburn vs Huddersfield - Home win - 3/4

Lincoln vs Derby - Away win - 7/10

 

I don’t feel confident. I do not. Nevertheless, the bets have been placed - Ten 20 pee doubles plus a single 20 pee accumulator. If the results go as predicted by The Grambler, the Bobby Moore Fund will be richer to the tune of a whopping

£11.26

Average whoppingness, there.

 

.....oooOooo.....

 

Teaser time...

Yay! How did you get on with the five teasers set last time? Here are the answers.

1. Who am I?

I was born in Rio de Janeiro in 1998. A midfielder, I began my senior career at Vasco da Gama before signing for Manchester City on a five-year contract, but never played a game for them. I was loaned out to Girona supposedly for one season, but the loan spell was continued because the UK Home Office denied me a work permit. I signed to my current club Aston Villa in 2019 and finally received my work permit.

Answer - Douglas Luiz Soares de Paulo, but you can call him Douglas Luiz

2. The UEFA European Championship began in 1960; which four nations took part?

Answer - Czechoslovakia, France, Soviet Union and Yugoslavia

3. Which recently retired football manager has coached the following clubs - Gainsburgh Trinity, Burton Albion, Scarborough, Notts County, Torquay United, Huddersfield Town (twice), Plymouth Argyle, Oldham Athletic, Bury, Sheffield United, Crystal Palace (twice), QPR (twice but caretaker manager on the second occasion), Leeds United, Rotherham United, Cardiff City and Middlesbrough?

Answer - Neil Warnock

4. Which club plays its home games at the New York Stadium?

Answer - Rotherham United. For sponsorship purposes it is also known as the AESSEAL New York Stadium.

5. Which club lost the FA Cup Final against Chelsea in both 2007 and 2018?

Answer - Manchester United

Shall we have five for this week? Yes, why not.

1. Who am I?

I was born in Coventry in 1992. A striker, I began my senior career at Coventry City where I scored 22 goals in 49 appearances. In 2014, I moved to AFC Bournemouth, scoring 61 in 171 appearances. In 2020, I moved to my current club, Newcastle and have, so far, netted 45 times in 89 appearances. I have also been capped for England nine times.

2. Which player was sold by Chelsea in 2019 for £89 million?

3. Which club lost the League Cup Final against Liverpool in 1983 and 2003?

4. Who is Leeds United’s all-time highest goalscorer?

5. Which English club plays its home games at Gresty Road?

There you have it. Have fun trying to work that lot out. As always, try and answer them before shouting out Hey Googly, Syria or Alexis. Please feel free to pass on the link to your pals so that they can enjoy The Grambler’s footy teasers too.

 

.....oooOooo.....

 

Remember the serious message...

As usual (at the risk of repeating myself), I remind you of the main reason for continuing to publish this blog – to raise awareness about bowel cancer. If you have any bowel problems, don’t be fobbed off with the line that you are too young for bowel cancer to be a consideration. Just point your doctor in the direction of (the already mentioned) Never Too Young | Bowel Cancer UK


.....oooOooo.....

 

Please, take a few minutes to watch an informative little video from Mersh (a great friend of Stewart’s).

Click on this link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=26HWQXMalX4. The amount quoted is miles out of date. The total raised for the Bobby Moore Fund now stands at...

£75,330

 

…..oooOooo…..

 

And Finally...

And finally, Cyril? And finally, Esther, I am grateful to a Mr. B. (or is it M?) Bailey. I have enjoyed Bill Bailey’s style of comedy since I first saw him on his own BBC Scotland show, Is It Bill Bailey? back in 1998. It was surreal and different. Who else mixed music and comedy in the same way? Victor Borge, maybe? So, to finish this week, let’s have a selection of Bill's comedy.

 

 

 

 

That’s all for this week folks, but remember you can read the musings of The Grambler every week (well, most weeks) by going to the blog at www.thegrambler.com where you can also catch up on any previous editions you may have missed.

 

Happy grambling.