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
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…
You have probably read on these rants that I often play a game of Words with Friends on my phone. Do you remember? You do. You've perhaps forgotten. It's like scrabble. Scrabble. The word game. A bit like a crossword. No I'm not angry with you. Crossword. It's a word game. What? Yes... a bit like scrabble. Jeez!
Any road up, between turns, I get treated to some form of advertising. So I'm too mean to upgrade to the ad free version... what of it? Some of these ads are for other games you can 'purchase'. Most of them seem to be based on Tetris, though nowhere near as clever. Other times, the adverts are for businesses and it's one of these that has caught my ire this week.
It is an ad for a company that specialises in vegetarian food. The premise is that a well known chef... though I've never heard of him... dons a blindfold and samples the vegetarian meal laid on the table in front of him. The ad makes out that he believes that the food he is eating... veggie sausages and hamburgers; that sort of crap... is actually meat. The outcome is that he takes his blindfold off to find out that he has been eating veggie food. I haven't got a clue what he says at this point; I think I was too busy laughing at the whole conceit. Perhaps he says, 'Well I'll go to the foot of our stairs.' Unless he was trained by Gordon Ramsay, in which case, he's more likely to say, 'F****** veggie sausages! F*** me!'
Anyway, why would I be laughing at this ad? Well, he's supposed to be wearing a blindfold, but he can cut his food up without any problem. If I tried that, the sausage would probably end up on the floor somewhere. And why does he need to be blindfolded? After all, when he removes the blindfold there is still no indication that the food he has been enjoying is veggie... it still looks like meat.
I understand the point being made, but the ad can surely convey the message that veggie food is so like meat dishes without such an unbelievable 'plot'.
Moving on to another, almost related, topic. I have a question. About vegans. Yes, them. Why do vegans eat food that is made to resemble meat? Although many have to stick to a plant-based diet due to medical advice, many vegans tend to adopt their food regime because they abhor the thought of injury to animals. Indeed, it angers them so much that they won't even eat honey because it utilises the services of bees. Sorry pardon excuse me? Obviously, the bees haven't consented to having some twonk wearing a net curtain over his head coming along and substituting the result of their hard work for half a pound of Tate and Lyle's granulated, so vegans consider this to be exploitation of animals.
I don't agree with that. Bees make honey. It's what they do. They are making a substance to feed them through the winter. If someone were to give them a substitute prior to them producing the stuff, they probably wouldn't make the effort. Indeed, there is some evidence to back this up. We talk about being busy as a bee, but research has found that they can be quite lazy if the effort is not required. Seriously. Bee keepers discovered that bees from a hive that was situated too near to a food factory which had a lot of sugary waste material didn't even bother with that business of flying miles and pollinating plants in the process of collecting nectar, they just dipped into the factory waste and made honey from that. How did researchers come to that conclusion? Well, the sugary waste had a particularly lurid hue and the resulting honey was similarly colourful. The hive owners decreed it to be unusable and therefore totally wasted.
Totally wasted? I don't think so. One up to the bees, I say. They got to keep their honey didn't they?
Let’s move on to the birthday honours, shall we?
Were any famous or notorious individuals born on the 30th of October? Of course there were. Here are some that even I know.
George II 1683 - The well-known king.
Preston Lockwood 1912 - Actor. Vicar Pottle in The Vicar of Dibley. Blink and you missed him; he died to make way for Dawn French’s character.
Anna Wing 1914 - Actress. Lou Beale in Eastenders. Her.
Norman Bird 1920 - Jobbing actor. Often played ‘nameless’ characters such as Landlord, Constable, Hotel manager, Gravedigger, Auctioneer, Post office man, Landlord (again), Dad, Agency man, Vet, Vicar, Farmer, Dad (again), Office manager, Town clerk, Mayor, Man on bus, etc. etc... 192 credits on IMDb.
Dickie Henderson 1922 - Entertainer.
David Lloyd Meredith 1933 - Actor. Sgt./Det. Sgt./Det. Insp. Evans in Z Cars. Him.
Michael Winner 1935 - Calm down dear, he’s a film director.
Harvey Goldstein 1939 - Statistician.
Bob Wilson 1941 - Footy bloke.
Richard Morant 1945 - Actor. Flashman in Tom Brown’s Schooldays. Him.
Ian McGeechan 1946 - Rugby guy.
Chris Slade 1946 - Drummy bloke. Sometime member of AC/DC. Believe it or not, he can be heard on Tom Jones Green, Green Grass of Home.
Juliet Stevenson 1956 - Actress. Paula Paxton in Bend It Like Beckham. Her.
Kim Thomson 1959 - Actress. Faye Lamb in Emmerdale. Her.
John Alford 1971 - Actor and singer. Billy Ray in London’s Burning which led to a brief singing career beginning with this apt toon... Smoke Gets In Your Eyes.
Emma Tate 1971 - Voice actress. Provided various Bob the Builder characters with their voices.
Jessica Hynes 1972 - Actress, director and writer. Yvonne in Shaun of the Dead. Her.
Simon Lowe 1973 - Actor. Tim Sibley in Bodies. Him.
Claudia Jessie 1989 - Actor. Eloise Bridgerton in Bridgerton. Her.
Vanessa White 1989 - A Saturday. A clip? Yes indeed. Here’s Forever Is Over.
Ashley Barnes 1989 - Footy bloke.
I’ve received a letter...
Dear Dickie Gramblerson,
We really enjoyed listening to The Saturdays’ Forever Is Over song. We have a question for you. What was The Saturdays’ first top ten hit?
How did The Grambler’s predictions fare last time? From our £2.20 stake, we won... £1.84. Oh, 36 pees down. What happened? Read on...
Blackburn vs Reading - Home win
Result - Blackburn 2 Reading 0
The Royals failed to take early chances for Baba ‘O’Reilly’ Rahman and Andy ‘Cheese’ Yiadom, while Sam ‘Bernard’ Gallagher struck the woodwork in a goalless first half.
Gallagher did find the net in the second period, tucking away Joe ‘Alan’ Rothwell's ball in just after the hour mark, having also forced a brave stop from Luke ‘Listen’ Southwood minutes before.
Tyrhys ‘Roland’ Dolan's curler three minutes later doubled the lead and gave Rovers some breathing space.
George ‘Ferenc’ Puscas forced a last-ditch challenge from Blackburn's defensive cover as Reading poured forward, while Ian ‘Padre’ Poveda was unlucky not to add a third late on when he fired wide on the counter-attack.
Gallagher led the line and might have scored more than once, while the wily Dolan also went close to a second after haring into the box shortly after his goal.
Bournemouth vs Huddersfield - Home win
Result - Bournemouth 3 Huddersfield 0
Dominic ‘Skinny’ Solanke scored twice to help give Bournemouth a thumping victory over Huddersfield Town.
Solanke's first came after just two minutes as he picked himself up after a foul in the box to send Lee ‘Dandy’ Nicholls the wrong way from the spot, and rattled home his second after Philip ‘Top’ Billing knocked down a Ryan ‘Tony’ Christie cross.
Huddersfield showed flashes in attack through the lively Sorba ‘Dylan’ Thomas and Josh ‘Stella’ Koroma, but Bournemouth ruthlessly put the game to bed when Lloyd ‘Ned’ Kelly headed in a teasing Christie delivery midway through the second half.
Koroma hit the crossbar with a fierce effort late on, but Danny ‘Way’ Ward's attempt to force the rebound in was ruled out for offside as Town were kept scoreless.
Coventry vs Derby - Home win
Result - Coventry 1 Derby 1
Ooh! ’It the bar!
The Sky Blues dominated the first half and went in at the break in front after Matt ‘Finish’ Godden's penalty.
But Derby improved in the second half and hit the post through Colin ‘Allcars’ Kazim-Richards, before Gustavo ‘Emcee’ Hamer hit the bar at the other end.
The Rams got a point when Graeme ‘Ankle’ Shinnie brought down a loose ball inside the box and lashed home.
Luton vs Hull - Home win
Result - Luton 1 Hull 0
Elijah ‘Wood’ Adebayo headed in to put the hosts in front at Kenilworth Road but had to come off at half-time through injury.
Glen ‘Chris’ Rea almost doubled the lead from just outside the box before the break, but his low shot was well saved by Matt ‘Rex’ Ingram, while Luke ‘Chuck’ Berry's deflected strike hit the post with the game goalless.
Hull rarely threatened home goalkeeper Simon ‘Dee’ Sluga, with only one of their 10 efforts on target.
Although Hull failed to seriously test Sluga they did waste a glorious opportunity to equalise in the second half when Tom ‘Gargoyle’ Eaves tried to find a team-mate rather than shoot with Sluga out of his goal.
Peterborough vs QPR - Away win
Result - Peterborough 2 QPR 1
Ilias ‘High’ Chair put QPR ahead directly from a corner early in the second half, only for Harrison ‘Rabbit’ Burrows to score Posh's equaliser.
The home side created the better chances and finally gained their reward a minute into added time when Siriki ‘Ring’ Dembele squeezed his finish past Seny ‘Help’ Dieng.
Oh well, can’t win them all. [I think you are confusing ‘them all’ with ‘any’. - Ed.]
Game - Result - Odds
Reading vs Bournemouth - Away win - 8/11
Oxford vs Morecambe - Home win - 4/7
Harrogate vs Bristol - Home win - 5/6
Newport vs Stevenage - Home win - 19/20
Sutton vs Walsall - Home win - 10/11
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
Six pees less whopping than last week.
Yay! How did you get on with last time’s five questions? Here are the answers.
1. Who am I?
I was born in Stuttgart in 1967. I am 6’ 4” tall. I joined Mainz in 1990 and made 325 appearances between then and my retirement in 2001. I originally played as a striker but later in my career moved to defence. On retirement, I took on the task of managing the team. I remained there until 2008 when I moved on to manage Borussia Dortmund. In 2015 I moved to an English club.
Answer - Jurgen Klopp
2. Which club has been managed by Brian Clough and Jimmy Armfield?
Answer - Leeds United
3. Who scored Scotland’s only goal in the 1986 World Cup Finals in Mexico?
Answer - Gordon Strachan
4. With which club did manager Bob Stokoe lift the FA Cup?
Answer - Sunderland
5. Which club plays at Turf Moor?
Answer - Burnley
How did you do? Okay? Here are five to get you thinking this week.
1. Who am I?
I was born in 1957 in Hayes, Middlesex. I played as a midfielder for Spurs and Monaco before moving to Swindon Town and then Chelsea as player/manager. I won 53 England caps. After Chelsea, I managed the national side, but was sacked for un-pc comments regarding disabled people.
2. Newcastle play at St James’ Park, but which English club plays at St James Park?
3. Which German club did Kevin Keegan play for?
4. 20 years ago, which player was transferred from Juventus to Real Madrid for a world record fee of 150 billion Italian lire (£46.5 million)?
5. Name all the clubs with ‘County’ in their name that have played in the Football League (from 1888 to date).
There you have it; five teasers to test you. Can you answer them without resorting to Googlie or Bung (or any other search engine, for that matter)?
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 http://www.bowelcanceruk.org.uk/campaigns-policy/latest-campaigns/never-too-young-campaign
Please, take a few minutes to watch an informative little video from Mersh (a great friend of Stewart’s).
Click on this link. The amount raised is a little out of date, though. Check the Justgiving page link given at the beginning of this blog to see the current figure.
And finally, Cyril? And finally, Esther, I am indebted to a Mr. B. Warner of Canton, Ohio who provides us with this week’s finishing item. Who is Mr. Warner, I hear you ask. Perhaps you know Brian Warner by his stage name, Marilyn Manson. You may also be wondering at the choice of him to end this week’s edition of the world’s greatest ill-informed blog. Well, think of the date. What happens this weekend? Yes, you at the back. Correct. It’s halloween or hallowe’en which is short for All Hallows evening, a time to celebrate the dead.
Of course, it has now been commercialised beyond all recognition. Nowadays, the shops are full of costumes and all witchy and zombie type gear for kids to dress up in to go guising. That is the Scottish term for going around the houses and performing a little song. None of this trick or treating nonsense. [I think you will find that the term trick or treat did, actually, originate in Scotland; the trick being the performing of a song and the treat being the reward given. - Ed.] Blibbing know all. Anyway, what happened to making your own costume, that’s what I want to know. In days gone by, black bin bag sales must have tripled at this time of year. And you didn’t just tell a joke as kids seem to want to do these days; you had to sing something. And what’s with pumpkins? It was a turnip lamp you made back then. Pumpkins indeed. Another American import. [Have you quite finished? - Ed.] I think so. [Then perhaps you would explain the Marilyn Manson connection. - Ed.]
Oh yes. Him. Well, he’s a scary looking bloke at the best of times. His whole persona seems to convey the scariness of Halloween, so it is perhaps not surprising that he should sing this song from The Nightmare Before Christmas. Ladeez and genellum, I give you Marilyn Manson singing This is Halloween... Mwaa ha ha harrr! (in my best Vincent Price voice)
That Marilyn Manson’s let himself go a bit.
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.