Dr Thompson reports on England - Part 1
By Alexander Dawson
Saturday 03 Dec 2011 11:42:00
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It was a Tuesday. Being a student, every night was now student night whether I liked it or not. Invariably however, when I was not a student I liked them, and so did the several hundred students who enjoyed Portsmouth night life with me. Tuesday is not student night in the Cuckoo Pint Public House, Fareham. Tuesday is student night in the Cuckoo Pint Public House, Fareham in as much as it is ‘We Hate Students Night’. Myself and my attorney were fortuitous as we were students of Football and already very, very drunk…

England were a football team on the decline, no, wait, ascendancy. We couldn’t be sure… but one thing of which we were almost certain was that England were supposed to be playing. They were playing Sweden in what our septic neighbour in the bar, whose name he said was ‘what’ called a friendly. Could it be true? Was there any kind of Mickey Mouse international football? The team sheet suggested so as it included Phil Jones in midfield. The game started and Septic What stood and gesticulated towards the big screen, clapping and cheering as though he were somehow physically transported to the game thanks to his ritual of precise fist pumps and deliberate deep voiced galvanising. We followed his gaze and began to watch the match…



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‘My God!’ I recoiled. ‘Micah Richards had lost four stone, three inches and almost all his pace’…Wait, could it be that this was not Richards but Kyle Walker? I turned to my attorney for some kind of answer but his body seemed to be being pulled by two super magnets drawing at his upper and lower body from two hostile and different directions. His unshaven face wobbled, facing in the direction of the parliament of young women on some kind of birthday outing. I too struggled to keep all of my feet on the ground at the same time as the intellectual and moral decision to drink lots of Gin before being confined to Hampshire’s inflatory drink prices in the pub that had diseased my motor neurone faculties. I focused, cut my losses and headed towards the comfort of the faux leather padding on the outside of the wooden bar behind me past the pulpit of girls.

On my way I found that the women were the sort who put the mental in judgemental. A soriety of sobriety. They observed me up and down and with faces that could be attributed to those belonging to a group offended by the pungency of burnt hair. Maybe it was burned hair they could smell? One in particular seemed to have afflicted terrible peroxide damage to the dry, tight, hot white member that was left on her head and around her ears. I surmised dry and tight was a suitable allegory and moved on, ever closer to the bar.

I shouted at my lawyer-friend, my man at arms, to join me as I was running low on money. As he did I heard a rising ‘oooo’ sound as if an urgency had gripped the rest of the people in this god forsaken bar and then an interruptive immediate pause that can only be described as pitch silence. A silence so deep it feels like it is all I have ever known. There then came a frightening cacophony of affirmations confirming my assumption. England had scored and I had missed it due to facing the way from which the man serves the drinks. Oh beautiful Bravia! Why did you escape my peripheral? Barry had scored and there was nothing I could do about it. I had failed to see the only interesting passage of play to occur…

Continued in Part 2...


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