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 https://www.justgiving.com/Geraldine-Smith3 .
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
Similarly, if you haven’t heard it, please listen to Geraldine’s moving radio interview which was on Radio Scotland recently.
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…
We begin this week with our lucky number draw. Are you ready? I’ll just jumble them up a bit. There. And the lucky number, ladies and gentlemen, is 37. So there you are. Congratulations to number 37.
Look out for another lucky number draw soon.*
*Or possibly never.
Who has heard this little rhyme?
Pardon me for being so rude,
It wasn’t me, it was my food.
It is a wee thing children trot out when they have burped. Do you know the next two lines?
Something in my tummy shifted,
That’s the reason that I rifted.
No? Perhaps it was only ever uttered by kids in and around Glasgow. So, rift is a slang term used as an alternative to burp or belch.
I know someone who definitely isn’t aware of the term... whoever chooses the names of new vehicles at Peugeot. The company has just introduced a new version of its van-based people carrier the ‘Tepee’ and has called it, you’ve guessed already I am sure, the ‘Rifter’.
Tepee was daft enough but, given that a tepee is a portable North American home, the name can be forgiven... only just, though.
But Rifter? A little unfortunate, to say the least. Of course, it isn’t the first time car makers have misjudged the market when it comes to naming cars.
Perhaps the most famous was the Ford Pinto, the US company’s idea of a compact car back in 1970. Pinto sounds fine. Doesn’t it? Not if you are Brazilian, it doesn’t. Apparently, in the land of Pele, the nut and the wax, the word pinto is a slang term relating to the male genitalia and it isn’t complimentary.
Female genitalia also get a few mentions. Who would have thought that there was anything wrong with the Opel name Ascona? Nobody, unless they came from Northern Spain or parts of Portugal. See also, the name Honda chose for one of its cars, the Fitta, which is a particularly crude name for female genitalia in Swedish or Norwegian. What do you mean, you’ve never heard of such a car? There is a reason for that; Honda were warned about the fact shortly before the car that we know as the Jazz went on sale. Phew.
You really wonder what the folk that name cars are wondering...
‘This car will be British through and through. It will be a match for all those imports flooding into the country. It really will turn the tide...’
‘Hey, let’s name it after that king who was supposed to have ordered the tide to turn...’
‘Brilliant! Ladies and Gentlemen, let me introduce you to the Austin Cnut.’
Luckily they had second thoughts and the car was called the Metro.
Don’t worry; I did make that up. Nobody is that stupid... or are they?
Chevrolet had problems in the Spanish-speaking parts of the world when it introduced a car called the Nova. No va means ‘it doesn’t go’.
You would think Buick were on safe ground when they named a car the LaCrosse. It’s a sport, isn’t it? Not in French-speaking Quebec, it isn’t. There, it is a slang term for... erm... self gratification.
Mitsubishi made the same mistake with its Pajero... only in the Spanish language rather than French.
Some cars are given names which are a bit non-PC in that they might cause offence to certain people.
There is a sports supercar from a company called Ascari... That’s not the offensive bit. Its monicker is KZ1-R. Nothing too offensive there, surely. (Don’t call me Shirley.) Maybe not to English speakers but, to Germans with memories of World War II, it is deeply offensive. The KZ part of the name is the abbreviation of Konzentrationslager, or concentration camp.
Triumph had the Spitfire; presumably named after the WWII aircraft of the same name. The one that was used to shoot down hundreds of aircraft, thus causing the deaths of many enemy airmen. But, hey, that was the sixties; way before political correctness took off. [Took off! Spitfire! Very good. - Ed.]
Mitsubishi decided to dip into the company history books when it came to naming a special rally replica of one of its Evo models. Mitsubishi actually made aircraft so why not name a car after one of them? If Triumph could do it, so could they. How about the Evo Zero Fighter? The Zero Fighter was also a WWII aircraft. You know... the one that took thousands of allied lives and was used in Kamikaze raids at the end of the war.
In the nineteen fifties the US car company Hudson came up with the title of Wasp for one of its vehicles. Perhaps it was a buzzy little car with a sting in its tail. Maybe so, but there must have been a few sales in the black-hating deep south where the initials WASP meant something entirely different.
Then there are those car (and van) names which are just plain bonkers. The offerings from western manufacturers such as Renault Wind, Daf Daffodil, Oldsmobile Achieva, Opel/Vauxhall Adam and Citroen Jumpy look quite sensible compared to those from the far east. Let’s face it, these are just utterly baffling...
Toyota Estima Lucida G Luxury Joyful Canopy
Mazda Bongo Friendee (See also Mazda Bongo Brawny)
Great Wall Coolbear
Great Wall Wingle
Datsun Cedric (See also Violet, Fairlady, Gloria and Sylvia)
Nissan Horny Super Long
Suzuki Every Joypop Turbo
Mazda Scum Wagon
Isuzu Mysterious Utility Wizard
Geely Rural Nanny (See also Geely Beauty Leopard)
Honda Freed Spike
Honda Brio Amaze
Mitsubishi Town Box
Proton Saga (I wonder which age group that was aimed at.)
Proton Putra (A bit too close to putrid for my liking.)
There are hundreds more that I could list, but I won’t. I will end with my own favourite; another Proton, its name means ‘strong as’ (steel, perhaps.) in Malay. To me, it is just a daft name... Ladeez and genullum, I give you the Waja.
I can just imagine the conversation...
‘I’m having problems with my Waja.’
‘I’m a car mechanic; you want to see a doctor, mate.’
Incidentally, while I am on the subject of car names, do you know what the Hebrew word for Beetle (as in VW Beetle) is? [Do you care? - Ed.] It is the inoffensive (unless you speak English) hipushit... which is exactly the term I used to use when describing my Austin Metro... or Cnut, if you prefer.
Were any famous or notorious people born on the 21st of April? Of course. Here are some I’ve even heard of. Charlotte Bronte 1816 (Orfer. Factoid: Her novel Jane Eyre was published under the pen name of Currer Bell.), John Muir 1838 (The original environmentalist.), Efrem Zimbalist 1889 (Concert violinist and composer.), Freddie Dixon 1892 (Motor cycle racey bloke. Known as Flying Freddie.), Norman Parkinson 1913 (Snapper.), Anthony Quinn 1915 (Actor. For our first clip of the week... let’s have a dance.), Alistair MacLean 1922 (Orfer. Like Miss Bronte, he occasionally used a pseudonym [Sounds painful. - Ed.]; his was Ian Stuart.), John Mortimer 1923 (Barrister turned orfer.), Elizabeth the Second, by the Grace of God, of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, and of her other Realms and Territories Queen, Head of the Commonwealth, Defender of the Faith 1926 (Known to her friends as Betty.), Jack Taylor 1930 (Footy referee. Factoid: In the 1974 World Cup final, he awarded two penalties: the first ever in a World Cup final.), Angela Mortimer 1932 (Tennisy bloke.), Charles Grodin 1935 (Actor.), James Osterburg 1947 (Who? Oh, Iggy Pop. He’s the singer that can’t afford a shirt. A clip? Here’s his biggy.), John Weider 1947 (Bassist and fiddler. Another clip? Here's Don't Give Up On Me.), Andie MacDowell 1958 (Actress. She was in Four Weddings and a Funeral. Er... That’s it.), Robert Smith 1959 (Singer, it says here. Have a nice wee toon. Here's Close to Me.), Peter van Vossen 1968 (Voetbal gozer.), Toby Stephens 1969 (Ectaw. Son of Sir Robert Stephens and Dame Maggie Smith... Nice to see someone from humble beginnings making a name for himself [Do I detect a smidgin of sarcasm? - Ed.].), Jeff Anderson 1970 (Actor. Randal Graves.), Steve Backshall 1973 (Naturalist TV presenter. [What? He presents in the nude? - Ed.]), James McAvoy 1979 (Ectaw. Gnomeo.) and Adam Rooney 1988 (Footy bloke.).
Iggy Pop - 'You, too, can have a body like mine...
if you're not careful.'
I’ve received a letter...
Dear Mr Granblue,
I did enjoy hearing Close to Me by the Cure. Robert Smith was an outstanding singer with a fantastic vocal range. The band had a few hits in the 1980s. What was their first top 20 hit?
Yours with oodles of love,
Let’s move onto grambling matters. How did last week’s bet fare? It won. Sort of. I didn’t make a profit. 67 pees back from a £2.20 stake is definitely not a profit. What happened? Read on...
Barnsley vs Bolton - Prediction Home win
Result - Barnsley 2 Bolton 2
Ooh! ’It the bar!
Gary Gardner fired the Tykes into a half-time lead from 10 yards.
Bolton thought they had won it with two late goals when Adam Le Fondre levelled with a penalty on 82 minutes before Craig Noone volleyed in just three minutes later.
But Oli McBurnie headed in a corner for an injury-time equaliser.
Burton vs Derby - Prediction Away win
Result - Burton 3 Derby 1
Liam Boyce gave Albion the lead as he found himself unmarked at the back post to convert Joe Sbarra's cross.
David Nugent headed the Rams level five minutes later, but Derby were punished for some poor defending when Luke Murphy curled a shot past Scott Carson.
Lucas Akins tapped in Burton's third before Matej Vydra had an 89th-minute penalty saved by Stephen Bywater.
Hull vs Sheffield Wed - Prediction Home win
Result - Hull 0 Sheffield 1
Jordan Rhodes opened the scoring for Wednesday, heading Jack Hunt's cross beyond Allan McGregor.
Abel Hernandez thought he had levelled for the hosts in injury time when he poked the ball beyond Owls keeper Joe Wildsmith.
But his goal was ruled out for offside and the away side held on despite a late flurry of Hull chances.
Middlesbrough vs Bristol C - Prediction Home win
Result - Middlesbrough 2 Bristol City 1
At last! Yay!
Milan Djuric acrobatically slotted in to give City an early lead, before George Friend equalised with a header.
Daniel Ayala headed in the winner after the break.
The game was marred by a first-half collision between Boro striker Patrick Bamford and Robins defender Aiden Flint which saw Bamford stretchered off.
Bamford received 10 minutes of attention by medics on the pitch, before he was carried from the field receiving oxygen. Flint was unscathed.
Nottingham For vs Ipswich - Prediction Home win
Result - Nottingham 2 Ipswich 1
Nottingham Forest scored two late goals to beat Ipswich.
Grant Ward opened the scoring for Ipswich, heading Myles Kenlock's cross beyond Costel Pantilimon.
But Ben Brereton equalised with an 89th-minute penalty for the hosts after he was bundled over in the box.
Joe Lolley then volleyed in Brereton's deep cross at the far post in the fifth minute of stoppage time to complete a dramatic turnaround.
Not a great week for The Grambler. Hopefully he/she/it will improve a bit this week. Let’s see the selections...
Game - Result - Odds
Doncaster vs Oxford Utd - Prediction Home win - Evens
Portsmouth vs Charlton - Prediction Home win - Evens
Rochdale vs Bradford - Prediction Home win - 8/11
Rotherham vs Bristol Rovers - Prediction Home win - 8/11
Scunthorpe vs Walsall - Prediction Home win - 8/11
The selections have been made. Let’s see how much we could win in the unlikely event that the results go as predicted.
The bets have been placed (10 x 20 pee doubles plus 1 x 20 pee accumulator) and if they all go according to The Grambler’s Prediction, the Bobby Moore Fund stands to receive a whopping...
Hmm. That is a teensy bit whopping.
Teaser time. Yay! Last week I asked you what Leyton Orient, Northampton Town, Carlisle United, Swindon Town and Barnsley have in common. The answer is that have all spent only one season in the top flight of English football.
Leyton Orient were in Division One in the 1962-3 season, Northampton Town were there from 1965 to 1966 and Carlisle were there in the 1974-5 season. Swindon Town were in the Premiershit from 1993 to 1994 and Barnsley were there from 1997 to 1998.
Too easy? How about this one? Let’s head into UEFA Champions League territory. Only one South Korean player has won a Champions League medal. Who was it? How about a wee bonus question? With which club did he win it?
As usual, let’s finish with a mention 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 http://www.bowelcanceruk.org.uk/campaigns-policy/latest-campaigns/never-too-young-campaign
And finally, Cyril? And finally, Esther, I am indebted to a Mr J. Mortimer who gave us one of the greatest legal characters in Horace Rumpole; a defence barrister, but a bit of an anarchist. The character was brought to life superbly by the Australian Actor Leo McKern. Between 1978 and 1992 ITV showed seven series of Rumpole of the Bailey - 43 episodes in all. However, the first time McKern portrayed Rumpole was in a 1975 'Play for Today' on BBC and it is this earliest outing that I have chosen to end this week’s edition. Ladeez and genullum, please enjoy Rumpole and the Confession of Guilt.
That’s all for this week folks, but remember you can read the musings of The Grambler every week by going to the blog at www.thegrambler.com