Friday 24 October 2014

Week 12 - The Grambler and the shopping scam

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 will be 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 .


If you haven’t already done so, please read the article which recently 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.


Stewart’s wish was that The Grambler should continue after his death and I have been happy to oblige.  Welcome to The Grambler, the most ill-informed blog you are ever likely to see. Read on and enjoy…


Do you recall a few weeks ago, Scotland had the chance to assume independence from the rest of the UK?  Tempted by promises from Wendy Darling and Golden Brown that Scotland (if it remained part of the UK) would have greater powers over its own affairs, 55 per cent of the electorate said ‘Ooh that sounds nice’ and voted ‘no’.  This week, the first piece of legislation since the electorate fell for this hype has been brought in by the Scottish parliament.  What can it be – you are all eager to know.  What do you mean, you couldn’t care less?  This is history in the making.  This is Scotland flexing its political muscles, telling the world ‘Look at our amazing new powers’.  So what have these amazing new powers been used for?  Tax changes?  Getting people back to work?  Education?  Putting money into the NHS?  Nope.  The government of Scotland, using its new powers, has legislated….that supermarkets should no longer give free carrier bags and should charge 5 pee for each one.  Yeah?  You’re impressed aren’t you?

The thinking is that too many carrier bags end up as rubbish that can injure sea life (Seriously), particularly turtles (Yeah, you get loads of them swimming up the Clyde.).  It is thought that people will be too miserable to spend 5 pees on a carrier bag and will bring their own shopping bag…I know; just like your mum and granny used to do…Voila!  No more carrier bags being mistaken for tasty fish by turtles.  Yes, that’s fine, Scotland, if the whole world does the same.  However, as Scotland’s population is currently 5.3 million, or one thirteen hundredth of the world’s population – that is 1 over 1300, incidentally, or 0.07% of the total - I can’t see it making a blind bit of difference.  The only difference it is likely to make in Scotland is that sales of bin liners will go up.

This has all reminded me of a news story brought to my attention recently.  It concerns a husband and wife and their weekly shopping habits.  Said husband and wife would park their car in the supermarket car park and head into the store.  They would then take a shopping-trolley each and proceed around the store filling each trolley with identical goods.  Thus, as they approached the checkout area, each trolley would be carrying exactly the same as the other.  However, while the husband put his goods through the checkout, the wife would head for the supermarket cafeteria and place her trolleyload of goods in a trolley locker.  Meanwhile, having paid for his goods, the husband would push his trolley to the car and load the shopping into the boot.  He would then head back to his wife, who would no doubt have a nice cup of tea and a toasted tea cake waiting for him.  After finishing the little snack, the wife would retrieve the trolleyload of (unpaid for) goods and exit the supermarket to put the stolen goods into the car.  Ah, but what if the security man were to stop her?  Simple; she had the receipt!  And so she had.  The husband had given it to her and if the security man went through the trolley item by item he would see that the receipt tallied up perfectly.

It was quite a scam.  Quite smart in a way.  You have to smile at the sheer cheek of it. But they got caught in the end.  Perhaps the security guards just noticed this same woman going out of the store week after week with all her shopping loose in the trolley.  Who on earth would buy all that shopping and not put it in carrier bags?

Now, I am sure you are way ahead of me here.  Now that carrier bags are not free, I predict quite a lot of people will head out of a store with their shopping loose in the trolley.  Yes.  A potential nightmare for supermarket security guards, I reckon.

Or stores could just follow the Adli, Ldil template and make the checkout queuing area so narrow you couldn’t possibly half inch anything!

By the way, the story of these felons is absolutely true.  You are probably thinking, ‘What kind of lowlife would do such a thing?’  A very intelligent kind of lowlife; a doctor, no less.


Okay then, on to our birthdays of today 25th October.  It’s birthday wishes to…Johann Strauss 1825 (Johann’s lad), Georges Bizet 1838 (inventor of Carmen hair rollers), Pablo Picasso 1881 (painter and decorator), Helen Reddy 1941 (inventor of Cup-a-soup), Jon Anderson 1944 (singing gnome), Rob Halford 1948 (founder of Judas Priest bike shop), Nick Hancock 1962 (Tony’s lad), Russell Anderson 1978 (football bloke), Shaun Wright-Phillips (another football bloke) and Katy Perry 1984 (Perry Como’s lass).  Now, I bet you are expecting a gramblerised song at this point.  You are?  Well, I am going to disappoint you.  Sort of.  I am giving you some song lyrics, but I don’t need to gramblerise them; they are dreadful enough without any input from me.

But first, another anniversary on this date.  The death of one of the US of A’s great songsmiths.  Roger Miller died on this day in 1992.  He penned some wonderful toons – ‘King of the Road’ was one of his.  He had hits with other people’s songs too.  Remember ‘Little Green Apples’?  He also did the one I give you here.  A song about England, patently written by someone who had never been there – Engerland Swings (like a pendulum do).  Ye gods and little fishes!

Engerland swings like a pendulum do
Bobbies on bicycles, two by two
Westminster Abbey, the tower Big Ben
The rosy red cheeks of the little children

Now, if you huff and puff and you fin'ly save enough
Money up to take your family on a trip across the sea,
Take a tip before you take your trip
Let me tell you where to go
Go to Engerland 'cause

Engerland swings like a pendulum do
Bobbies on bicycles, two by two
Westminster Abbey, the tower Big Ben
The rosy red cheeks of the little children

Mummy's old pajamas and your daddy's mustache
Falling out the windowsill, frolic in the grass
Tryin' to mock the way, they talk fun but all in vain,
Gaping at the dapper men with derby hats and canes, oh

Engerland swings like a pendulum do
Bobbies on bicycles, two by two
Westminster Abbey, the tower Big Ben
The rosy red cheeks of the little children


Engerland swings like a pendulum do
Bobbies on bicycles, two by two
Westminster Abbey, the tower Big Ben
The rosy red cheeks of the little children


Dapper men in derby hats and canes???  This is a song written in the 1960s…the nineteen sixties…not the eighteen sixties!  What planet was this guy on!  And he sings durby instead of darby.  Tyuh!  And it’s a bowler hat, anyway you barmy pillock!

Sorry to all you Roger Miller fans out there, but he was a bit… well…crap.

Right shall we move on to the little matter of last week’s gramble?  Was it any good?  Nah.  Not really.  From our £2.20 stake we got a return of only 66 pee.  Rubbish, eh?  What happened?  Read on…

Everton vs Aston Villa – Prediction Home win

Result – Everton 3 Aston Villa 0


Phil Jagielka, Romelu Lukaku and the returning Seamus Coleman grabbed the goals for the Toffees as they climb to 12th in the Premier League table.

Boss Roberto Martinez handed Ross Barkley his first start of the campaign after recovering from injury and the England midfielder was involved in the first goal.

A short corner involving Barkley and Leighton Baines saw the latter deliver a fine right-footed cross for skipper Jagielka to nod home.

Villa improved after that and went close through Alan Hutton before James McCarthy denied Tom Cleverley as he prepared to pull the trigger.

However, they were left chasing a two-goal deficit shortly after the break as Lukaku silenced some of his critics.

Everton's Romelu Lukaku celebrates scoring his sides second goal of the game
Lukaku tells his teammates he felt a spot of rain
The Belgian raced on to a through ball from Barkley before firing a left-footed drive at goal - although Brad Guzan won't want to see it again after letting the shot squirm through his grasp.
The second-goal put Everton in cruise control and they added some gloss to the scoreline when Baines whipped in another fine delivery for fellow full-back Coleman to prod home.
Ipswich vs Blackburn – Prediction Home win
Result – Ipswich 1 Blackburn 1
Oooh! ‘It the bar!
Ben Marshall's stoppage-time free-kick rescued a point for 10-man Blackburn and denied in-form Ipswich.
Marshall perfectly placed a curling effort to cancel out a similarly brilliant dead-ball finish from Ipswich's David McGoldrick.
That goal came after a foul on Conor Sammon, for which Matthew Kilgallon was shown a second yellow card.
Ipswich remain unbeaten in eight games and stay sixth in the Championship, while Blackburn slip to 13th.
Ipswich manager Mick ‘I’m a Yorkshire man throo an’ throo’ McCarthy told reporters “Eee, nay lad, we had enough chances and really should have put t’t game to bed. We kept ‘em interested, like. T’t first half were pretty ordinary wi’out too many chances, but we were’t dominant team wi’ or wi’out 10 men.
"Blackburn stuck arrit, but we lerrum off th’ook. Still, it's another pint and if we end up int play-offs by a pint, it won't marrer."
Walsall vs Crewe Alexandra – Prediction Home win
Result – Walsall 0 Crewe 1
Adam Dugdale lashed in his first goal since May to earn bottom club Crewe Alexandra their first League One away win of the season at Walsall.
Crewe's back three were the key to their second straight victory, limiting Dean Smith's side to very few worthwhile chances.
Mathieu Manset shot left footed just across the face and Jordan Cook's 20-yard chip was tipped over by Crewe keeper Ben Garratt, while Romaine Sawyers whistled one just wide in the first half.
But Crewe had the better early chances, Brad ‘I’m free’ Inman lobbing just wide while Alan Tate saw a header fly just over from George Cooper's corner and Anthony Grant's right-foot angled shot went straight at the keeper.
And former Walsall striker Febian Brandy's well-struck right foot shot was safely caught by Richard O'Donnell, only for the Saddlers keeper to almost clumsily spill it through his own legs.  Ooh, you don’t want to spill it through your own legs.
Yeovil vs Swindon – Prediction Away win
Result – Yeovil 1 Swindon 1
Ooh! ‘It the bar again!
James ‘Mr Pickwick’ Hayter gave the hosts an interval lead with a composed finish, but could later have been sent off for a bit of handbags with Yaser Kasim after being booked for a challenge on the Swindon midfielder.
However, Swindon's Andy ‘Moon River’ Williams curled in a leveller against his former club.
And Swindon held on after captain Nathan Thompson was shown a second yellow card with 12 minutes to play.
Hartlepool vs Luton – Prediction Away win
Result – Hartlepool 1 Luton 2
Yay!  Or should that be phew?
Mark Cullen and Jim Stevenson were on target as Luton's fine run continued with a win against lowly Hartlepool.
They went ahead when Cullen slotted his fifth goal of the season through the legs of Scott Flinders following a Pelly ‘put the kettle on’ Ruddock through-ball.
The second came when Stevenson tapped in the rebound after Flinders parried Ricky Miller's free-kick.
Neil Austin pulled one back from the spot in injury time after Scott Griffiths fouled Brad Walker.
Luton manager and pensioner John Still telling reporters that he still has all his own teeth
Luton manager John Still told reporters ‘I can only control the controllables; whether it was or whether it wasn’t, I can’t do anything about that.’  He was then led away by his carer with the promise of a nice mug of horlicks.
So there you have it my little gramblerinis, only two out of five going as predicted by The Grambler, but it could so easily have been four right.  Never mind.  Let’s see this week’s predictions.
Game – Result – Odds
Birmingham vs Bournemouth – Prediction Away win - Evens
Derby vs Wigan – Prediction Home win – 3/4
Oldham vs Bradford – Prediction Home win – Evens
Preston vs Fleetwood – Prediction Home win – 4/6
Raith vs Alloa – Prediction Home win – 10/11
That’s this week’s selections from The Grambler.  All five games take place on Saturday the 25th of October at 3pm.  The bets are on (10 x 20 pee doubles and 1 x 20 pee accumulator) and if all results go as predicted, The Grambler’s Kick Cancer’s Backside Fund will be donating the magnificent sum of…
…to the Bobby Moore Fund.  Hey if you fancy making a wee donation yourself, go for it.  You can do so by going to .  Go on, you know you want to.
What about last week’s teaser, then?  Did you know it?  I asked which England outfield player had the most caps without ever scoring for his national side.  The answer is Ashley Cole who played 107 times for England without netting a goal.  Incidentally, the world record belongs to Sweden’s Bjorn Nordqvist who played 115 games without ever scoring.
This week’s teaser now; a Premiershit management question for you.  Only two people have managed as many as five clubs in the English Premiershit, can you name them?  Actually, you can’t be wrong, because the phrasing of the question means that if you answer ‘no’ you are correct.  So, instead of a question I will just say – name them.
And finally, Cyril?  And finally Esther, a rare piece of humour from the Beeb Beeb Ceeb’s website.  In the wake of Mario ‘I’m pure mental’ Balotelli’s latest indiscretion (shirt-swapping at half time? Pure mental!) the Beeb has come up with Supermario’s own snakes and ladders game…
Happy grambling.

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