By Brian Hall
Wednesday 17 Aug 2011 09:26:00
Browse all Brian Hall articles



The best way, I have learnt over decades, to avoid PMT rising when it involves the NUFC-SAFC friendly get together is to try and think of other things. I hope this little piece might help some do just that. After all, it is only Tuesday. There is so, so, much more,  to  life than the biggest derby match in English football.


Winning money for a start. I heard the other day that an American woman had collected over 29 million dollars over the last decade or so due to her successes on scratch cards. The mathematicians reckoned that the odds of her managing that were almost impossible. However, there was a twist - she is a Professor in Maths. I must admit that I did feel a bit regret that I was known as totally crap at that subject in school. I was always bottom of the class, and proud of it. My teacher gave up on me, and if a hard algebra problem came up, with nobody knowing the answer, he would ask me if I could solve it. He meant no harm, it was just a laugh, and I used to tell him that I knew the answer but it was best that my mates resolved it. My only ability was an uncanny skill in working out league tables - sorry, no mention of footy - but all in all, that has not carried me forward in working out how to beat the scratch card system. Bloody Maths Professors.



No, am baffled by most numerical figures. For example, a row broke out the other day between the police and the politicians over cuts to the Boys in Blue. Despite my crap maths, I began to think that the police chief had a point. He told the politician that if you cut numbers of officers back, it means there are less officers. The politician said he was wrong, as it made no difference if you cut numbers of them back, as it would still mean the same numbers on the street. Maybe, after all, that politician was bottom of his Maths class too at school.


Talking about numbers, and avoiding thinking about footy - sorry again to mention the word  - we should all be very worried by the latest research on the statistics of people watching telly too much, and the dangerous impact it has. Very dangerous it turns out. Some bunch of health researchers produced a report, covered on radio not telly by the way, which said life expectancy is reduced by looking at the box too much. And they added that on average, 8 years of our lives are spent glaring at the said telly. I must have spent less, but the trouble is that I smoke when I am watching it, so that must be me knackered.


Strange business all this stats and numbers game. The recent riots have seen a canny few locked up, so we are supposed to feel good. The number of holidays interrupted rose recently as well, as the Home Secretary, the Prime Minister, Boris Whoever Mayor of that city down South, and a load of MPs came hyem early to solve all the looting, disturbances, panic. Not the one in the financial system but the one that happened on the streets. Unfortunately, they all had a bad time - holiday knackered temporarily, and worse, found themselves in a row with the police. Again. After claiming they quelled the riots, only for the police to say that they did. The coppers seemed to say that they had no need of the politicians' telephone numbers.


Ah weh. One numbers count will not include two characters this autumn. The scheduled Jarrow March involving mainly young lads and lasses is being organised, in recognition of those who trekked to London in the 30s and in an attempt to remind those in power that our region needs jobs. Despite my lack of maths skills, I am not bad at working out betting odds. And the odds of Michael Owen or Tony Blair being seen on that must be higher than the odds of that American Professor pulling off all those scratch card winnings.



So. Hope this boring piece on mathematics has took your mind of that certain event coming up this weekend.


Catch ya soon....Bry


ps           admission time. Not much is going to take my mind off it, and the PMT is kicking in. And it is only Tuesday!



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