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…
I have noticed a trend on, or rather, not on, cars... specifically the boy racer type like Audis and BMWs... that is quite illegal. [What the blibbing flip are you talking about? - Ed.] No front number plate, that's what I'm talking about.
It is illegal in Britain to drive a car which doesn't have both a front and a rear number plate and yet, I have spotted hundreds... well, dozens... a good few, anyway that have no licence plate on the front. Illegal. So how are the owners of these cars getting away with it and why are they driving cars so (not) equipped?
I have a theory and I think, on this occasion, I am actually right and not just talking the usual load of old bollocks.
It is all to do with the drivers wanting to drive faster than the speed limit without being spotted by a speed camera.
Sorry pardon excuse me?
You see, these speed cameras only capture images of speeding vehicles as they approach. Did you know that? Well, you do now. They were designed by racing driver, Maurice Gatsonides who wanted a device to measure his cornering speed in the hope that his driving could be improved. That is why they are (or were) known as Gatso cameras. Educational, this is. Any road up, because it only registers oncoming vehicles, you can go as fast as you like once you have passed the camera; it won't photograph you.* That is an irrefutable (That's a good word; wonder what it means.) fact.
It must mean that speeding motorbikes won't ever be caught on camera. No front number plate, you see.
Anyhow, back to the cars without front number plates. I am guessing the drivers know how a speed camera works and realise that, no matter how fast they are travelling, if a speed camera should snap them, they will be untraceable because of that lack of identifying licence plate.
Ah, I hear you say, what if they are stopped by the police for not displaying a plate. Simple. Plead ignorance and promise to get a plate fitted.
The worst that could happen is that they would be forced to pay a smallish fine because of this minor infringement... and promise to get a plate fitted.
I should think a small fine is a lot better than the possibility of losing their driving licence because of multiple offences. [You might say it was just fine. Heh heh. - Ed. ] No. You wouldn't.
They might argue with the polis and say that BMW are using sub-standard glue to put number plates on cars. That wouldn't stick. Doh!
If that were true, why isn't every BMW so affected.
Also, how come it is only Audis from the Volkswagen/Audi company that can't hang on to their plates? Why aren't VWs, Seats and Skodas missing their front plate? Ditto Porsches
and other expensive Volkswagens in drag.
Go on. Check out racey-looking Audis and the like and see how many are lacking that front number plate. You will be surprised at the huge number.
What can you or I, Mr, Mrs or Ms Joe Public do to stop these foolhardy daredevils in their tracks? I have got a perfect, if not exactly legal... all right, entirely illegal... solution. Have you ever tried to park in a hospital car park that was so busy, you had to leave the car on a grass verge or no-parking area? Not that I would ever dream of doing such a thing. When you returned to your vehicle, has it ever had an A4 sheet glued to the window berating you for parking where you shouldn’t? Which I haven’t, incidentally. And no matter how hard you try, you cannot remove the f****** thing... which has never troubled me, obviously. For what seems like weeks, you have to soak the paper with boiling water and scrub it with a rough-bristled brush in the hope that you can get rid of it... or so I’ve heard. Well, I suggest a similar ploy for vehicles with a missing number plate. An A4 sheet should be glued to the windscreen directly ahead of the driver. What do you mean that would obscure his (and I’ll wager it is a he) vision? Oh dear. What a pity. Never mind. Printed on this sheet could be a simple message - ‘You seem to have lost your front number plate. As it is illegal to drive a car without it, I thought you might appreciate this reminder.’
That should do the trick.
*This is merely a figure of speech. The Grambler is not advocating that everybody should drive faster than the given speed limit.
Let’s move on to the birthday honours, shall we?
Were any famous or not so well-known individuals born on the 8th of October? Of course there were. Here are some that even I have heard of.
J. G. Devlin 1907 - Actor. Father Dooley in Bread.
Bill Maynard 1928 - Comedian and actor. Claude Greengrass in Heartbeat.
Betty Boothroyd 1929 - Dancer and politician.
Alasdair Milne 1930 - TV producer and former Director-General of the British Broadcorping Casteration.
Bill Brown 1931 - Fitba guy.
Ray Reardon 1932 - Snookery bloke.
Merle Parke 1937 - Dancer.
Paul Hogan 1939 - Actor and comedian.
Stanley Bates 1942 - Actor and screenwriter. Bungle in Rainbow.
Colin ‘Bomber’ Jackson 1946 - Fitba guy.
Bel Mooney 1946 - Journalist.
Sheila Ferguson 1947 - Singer. A Degree. Here’s a song from King Charles’ favourite group, When Will I See You Again.
John Cummings aka Johnny Ramone 1948 - Musician. A clip? Why, soitenly. Here’s The Ramones biggest hit, Baby, I Love You. Ye gods and little fishes!
Maggie Ollerenshaw 1949 - Actress. Mavis in Open All Hours and Still Open All Hours.
Hamish Stuart 1949 - Musician. Early member of the Average White Band. Time for a clip? Indeed. Let's Go Round Again, shall we?
James Coombes 1956 - Actor. Famous as the Cadbury Milk Tray man.
Richard Lintern 1962 - Actor. Dr. Thomas Chamberlain in Silent Witness.
Ian Hart 1964 - Actor. Thomas Blanky in The Terror.
Nicola Shindler 1968 - TV producer. Queer as Folk, Last Tango in Halifax, Happy Valley, It’s a Sin... all hers.
Sadiq Khan 1970 - Politician.
Anne-Marie Duff 1970 - Actress. Fiona in Shameless.
Michael Fraser 1983 - Fitba guy. Ex-Motherwell, you know... well, briefly.
Bruno Mars 1985 - Singer/songwriter. Here’s a jolly wee toon, The Lazy Song.
Michael Obiora 1986 - Actor. Lloyd Asike in Casualty.
Sol Heras 1987 - Actor. The middle of three actors to play Ryan Connor in Coronation Street.
I’ve received a letter, which is a surprise...
Dear Gramblish Stuart,
We were pleased to see that there was a clip this week from your Average White Band. We were, however, surprised that the track chosen was not the band’s biggest hit, the name of which, neither of us can remember. Can you help?
How did The Grambler’s predictions fare the last time we had a gramble? Believe it or not, we won. Actual money. From our £2.20 stake we won... not ten quids... not eleven quids... but twelve whole quids! Woo hoo! What happened? Read on...
Crystal Palace vs Chelsea - Away win
Result - Crystal Palace 1 Chelsea 2
Conor Gallagher curled home a superb right-footed effort to snatch victory for Chelsea.
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang scored after Odsonne Edouard had poked Palace into an early lead.
However, there was controversy surrounding Aubameyang's goal as it was set up by Thiago Silva, who Palace felt should have been sent off for a deliberate handball which denied Jordan Ayew a possible goalscoring opportunity.
Blackpool vs Norwich - Away win
Result - Blackpool 0 Norwich 1
Teemu Pukki's goal earned Norwich City victory over Blackpool at Bloomfield Road.
The Canaries withstood a strong start by the hosts and were ahead at the interval courtesy of a typically calm Pukki strike as he raced through on goal.
Blackpool's Theo Corbeanu had earlier seen an effort come back off the post, but Norwich had the better opportunities, twice hitting the bar in a breathless first half.
The chances dried up after the break.
Port Vale vs Sheffield Wed - Away win
Result - Port Vale 0 Sheffield Wed 1
Will Vaulks smashed home from distance just after the hour to give the Owls the win.
Vale were left counting the cost of missed chances after Gavin Massey and Ellis Harrison went close in the first half.
David Stockdale tipped a dipping Massey cross onto the bar two minutes in. Vaulks headed just wide before Stockdale saved Harrison's header during an open start to the game.
Jack Stevens did well to keep out a bullet header from Ben Heneghan at the other end on 22 minutes.
Stockdale made a good reaction save from Harrison's glancing header before Tom Conlon saw a powerful shot blocked just before half-time.
Barry Bannan went close with a free-kick early in the second half and Wednesday hit the front after a fierce first-time strike from Vaulks on 62 minutes gave the keeper no chance.
Dennis Politic failed to find the target from distance nine minutes later, before home keeper Stevens had an injury-time header saved by his opposite number.
Crawley Town vs Stevenage - Away win
Result - Crawley Town 1 Stevenage 2
A late penalty from Luke Norris gave Stevenage a 2-1 victory at Crawley.
Ashley Nadesan had pulled the Reds level after Jordan Roberts' opener but Norris kept his cool to hit the winner in front of the delighted travelling fans.
Jamie Reid threatened for Stevenage early on by firing just wide before winger Roberts gave Boro the lead by volleying home from 12 yards in the 23rd minute.
Crawley midfielder James Tilley put a deflected shot over before the Reds had a let off when Reid, fed by Roberts, fired against the bar with keeper Corey Addai beaten.
The Reds made an encouraging start to the second half when striker Nadesan levelled after 47 minutes, the ball rolling into the net from close in past keeper Taye Ashby-Hammond as Nadesan connected with an assist by Tom Fellows.
Boro wasted a chance to regain the lead just after the hour when, after a slip by Tony Craig, Danny Rose shot wide with only Addai to beat.
But Boro clinched victory five minutes from time when a handball by Nick Tsaroulla allowed substitute Norris to make no mistake from the penalty spot.
Hamilton vs Dundee - Away win
Result - Hamilton 0 Dundee 2
Hamilton Academical fell behind in the first half when Lyall Cameron drove into the bottom corner.
Dundee goalkeeper Adam Legzdins denied Jean-Pierre Tiehi, before Andy Winter's long-range shot hit the top of the bar.
But the visitors stood firm and Luke McCown netted their second deep into added time.
What a week! Can The Grambler repeat the feat this week? [Of course not. - Ed.] Let’s see what he/she/it has randomly selected this week.
Game - Result - Odds
Newcastle vs Brentford - Home win - 8/11
Forest Green vs Bolton - Away win - 17/20
Grimsby vs Crawley Town - Home win - 8/11
Stevenage vs Swindon - Home win - 17/20
Livingston vs Ross County - Home win - 10/11
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
Hmm... Not very whopping.
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 Perugia, Italy in 1968. A striker, I began and ended my career at my local club Perugia Calcio but, in between, I played for nine other clubs: Avelino, Casertana, Reggiana, Juventus, Middlesbrough, Marseille, Lazio, Derby County and Dundee. I was capped 22 times for Italy. I was nicknamed ‘The White Feather’ because of my prematurely white hair.
Answer - Fabrizio Ravanelli
2. What do André Villas-Boas, Antonio Conte, Glenn Hoddle and José Mourinho have in common?
Answer - They have all managed both Chelsea and Tottenham Hotspur.
3. Name the coach who managed - AFC Bournemouth, West Ham, Portsmouth, Southampton, Portsmouth again, Tottenham Hotspur, QPR, Jordan and Birmingham City.
Answer - Harry Rednapp
4. Which South African player has made the most Premier League appearances?
Answer - Steven Pienaar (214)
5. Which English club plays at the New York Stadium?
Answer - Rotherham United
Shall we have five for this week? Yes, let’s.
1. Who am I?
I was born in Sheffield in 1993. A centre-back, I began my senior career at Sheffield United, before moving to Hull City. I then moved to Leicester City before being transferred to my present club for £80 million, a world record for a defender. Within six months I was appointed team captain. I have been capped for England 48 times.
2. Which Premier League club has won the UEFA European Cup twice, but won the League One (as it was at the time) Championship only once?
3. Name the coach who managed (deep breath) - Vancouver Royal Canadians, Fulham, Ipswich Town, England, PSV Eindhoven, Sporting Lisbon, Porto, Barcelona, PSV Eindhoven again and Newcastle.
4. Which West Ham player has scored the most Premier League goals?
5. Which club plays at what is now known as the Select Car Leasing Stadium?
There you have it; five teasers to test you. 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.
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
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 raised is a little out of date; it is now sitting at over £60,000.
And finally, Cyril? And finally, Esther, I am indebted to a Mr P. Hogan for this week’s finishing clip. I thought that since it is Paul Hogan’s 83rd birthday today, we should end with some good old-fashioned Aussie humour. Long before Hogan became a Hollywood film star, he was starring in his own comedy show back in Oz. So, ladeez and genullum, sit back and enjoy The Very Best of The Paul Hogan Show.
Strewth, he’s aged 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.