Monday, 27 April 2009
Monday, 20 April 2009
Alot has happened since my last post....my wife left for New Zealand(not for ever),I've questioned my sanity and my beloved Everton have done the impossible and reached the F.A cup final...
Lets start with the events of yesterday,from the minute I awoke my stomach churned as if I had ate a late night street hot dog, that had been kept company by eight pints of Stella,this couldn't have been further from the truth...the previous night had been all salad and early nights,so the rumblin and grumblin guts was put down to pure nervousness.I showered, put on my lucky Jagielka number 6 away shirt and sat down to a hearty breakfast of tea and bacon butty...the build up on the sports channels had started and so it began.Little did I know that the day would end with such undiluted joy and so the hours that led up to the match itself were hard..I even found myself after years of being a non-smoker rummaging around in the kitchen draws to find my wife's emergency fags..
And so it came to pass after several pots of tea and a few very unpleasant dry Marlboro lights.. as I hid in the hallway peeking at the TV from an obtuse angle...Everton won....It may have been a scrappy game that will be remembered for the Man Utd team selection and the penalty that never was...and armchair glory hunters who only watch the 4-4 games(and live for 606 with Alan Green) have called it turgid...but us Blues don't care,we out sung Utd even if we didn't outplay them and with all the former players scattered around the ground it just goes to show that once you've played for the toffeemen its never leaves you..
Sir Alex can moan all he wants this morning about the playing surface and the mind games (pot and kettle springs to mind) and the phone in's can chime with all the usual drivel...but all that matters is we are in the final, with a good chance to claim a trophy both that Moyes and the fans deserve.Once again the performance of Rodwell was a great positive and the comeback of Vaughan means we now have a first choice striker selection problem which is something that must seem odd to the manager...Jags and Lescott were immense as ever and to see the former blade bury the winning pen was something that seemed written..after all he's been our best player for the last year.In general we were not at our best,and we will have to be to beat the ever improving Chelsea,but I'm learning this season that anything is possible so fingers crossed...
Wednesday, 1 April 2009
Shes taking a long overdue trip back to see her family,but as we are both feeling the affects of the phantom crunch..I cant afford to go with her...Bugger!
Being a attention seeking idiot,three weeks on my own is going to be hard...sometimes my other half must feel like a therapist...(she saves me a fortune)
So I'm making sure that I'm busy and out n about..I'm going be down in the motherland (Essex)
grafting with my dad..and doing lots of fresh air strolling..kept company by a few audio books.
The bike may even get a dust off and the lucky people of north London may get to see my pained red face hurtling towards them..its all happening..
The one thing I've got to keep in check while on my own is the comforting lure of the pub..
it would be all too easy to find great comfort in the bosom of the Wit n Cat,the bar snacks,light and lager and the tattered upholstery can lift the load and soothe the soul of a lonely man like me with great ease...
So as April unfolds, for me its a tale of moderation,keeping the grey matter busy and long distance phone calls at ungodly times of day...
This month also includes the biggest game in a while for Everton FC.The F.A cup semi against
Man Utd...If by some act of god or stroke of luck we win...the idea of moderation will be out the window!
If we win... you will hear me...and probably see me on the news..
So off I pop to do stuff of a important nature( put the kettle on)
But it wont be long til I return with more interesting things to say...I promise...
Monday, 16 March 2009
Once again four English teams made the next step to Rome and once again the so called "giants" of Europe have fallen by the wayside...
Inter gone,the old lady Juventus departed and Real Madrid put to the scouse sword.
But the biggest worry for the FIFA bigwigs should not be their obvious hatred for Premier League dominance...or there obsession with the 6 + 5 rule,that they feel will somehow throw a immigrant shaped spanner in the EPL spokes..(Inter only had one Italian in the squad against Man Utd by the way Mr Blatter)...
The biggest worry about the latest round of Europe's most glossy cup comp..is the violence that once again marred the game between Arsenal v AS Roma...despite the lack of real bother in the ground itself,supporters from the north London club were pelted with stones and one unlucky fan was stabbed....This was not the first incident to occur at the Stadio Olimpico..and yet FIFA keep turning a blind eye..and its going to be the host ground for the final..
Once again someone in great power is being swayed by either blindness or the size of the brown envelope? or both....
If this combination of corruption,violence and right wing hooliganism were to happen at Old Trafford on a Wednesday night during a tie involving the "powers that be's" beloved Madrid or Barca there would be life bans for all involved and we would be staring down the barrel of another post Heysel predicament...and rightly so.
And yet Roma will host the prestigious final..even tho they have a appalling record of stadium trouble..Why Sepp? tell me why?
Tell me why you have no guts or conviction in making this violence a thing of the past...
Maybe English clubs should boycott the Champs League?
Until we see change and the appropriate punishments....
Or maybe the ultimate show of strength would be to have another all English final and take Rome by storm...
But to all Aston Villa fans who currently crave this European glory...just think......
If you claim that prized fourth spot.....
What if you draw AS Roma?
Will you be taking your kids to the Stadico Olimpico?
Wednesday, 4 March 2009
The buzzing sound of the needles,the smell of the hopefully spotless equipment,and the swollen throbbing of a freshly inked limb are all things of the long distant past....
That is until you get that itch...
That itch that says..
"you've got a gap"
"you haven't had any work done for yonks"
"That fresh piece of flesh needs marking for life"
My god I'm itching now!!!
I'm in desperate need...an old friend of mine recently talked about getting his first tat and BANG....I was there getting my first,then the craving started...and it is a craving...
Ive known I wanted full sleeves since I was a kid,tattoos have always had an air of romance for me...my grandad had a war I.D tat on his forearm and the smudged green mark that stood for his commitment to his country and love for his wife filled me with a swell of pride even then...also the meaning of tats has always been important plus they are a way of standing out and getting noticed and quite frankly with a name like Vane I've hardly ever been a wallflower!
They divide people,my mum hates mine,and people have moved away from me due to the art covering my skin.But I love what the are to me,and I love the fact that I'm along way from finishing..my arms are part done,and the ideas for all the gaps have been pondered and cogitated on for many years..I have no real longing for the pain that comes with the process..it isn't awful but once your adrenalin and endorphins fade (for me that's after around 2 hours) the pain becomes more a severe annoyance rather than agony... the swelling and aftercare can be worse,but in the end, after a couple of weeks of pile cream and clingfilm you look at your new piece and another bit of the jigsaw has dropped into place..another step towards completion..
To a shrink this is probably very insightful but then I already know I'm a vain show off who longs for attention and recognition..and being a painted man gets me plenty of both....
It's not cheap to cover your body in doodles,but that's a good thing...it makes it all the more special...and right now I'm counting the pennies and staring at a blank piece of epidermis that needs something...but what?
A rose and spiders web?
A memorial to someone special?
Or all three!!!
Better get saving...'cos that itch needs scratching!
Monday, 23 February 2009
according to them Man United have won the league, Chelsea are re-born and Rafa has cocked up again(all have a modicum of truth),meanwhile Arsenal are a long distant memory and media darlings Aston Villa have started to stumble...all of this has overshadowed one of the most horrific tackles(if you can call common assault a tackle) to be seen in the Premiership in quite some time.Kevin Nolan's two footed lunge was nothing short of stomach churning and due to the fact that his victim Victor Anichebe stood up and has not been seriously injured has allowed it to be glossed over by most of the mainstream press.In the month that Eduardo returned from his lengthy absence,why has Nolan's brutal challenge not been so highly reported?
After all the crunching tackle on the Arsenal hitman is still being talked about with so much venom.
Maybe its because Anichebe hasn't been left with a vomit inducing injury,or maybe its just because it was a tackle on a Everton player of no real profile?
Whatever the reason is it's wrong!
This is the sort of tackle that we are meant to be banishing from the game,and just because its committed by a player who "isn't that type of player" why should it be so overlooked?
My passion may have been accentuated by the fact that it's a blue blooded fellow toffee that has been clattered but even if this had been the other way round I would be calling for Big Vic to be heavily punished(three games just isn't long enough)
In a game that was disappointing in many ways,this was a true low light and I for one will hate Nolan from this day onward..I'm not buying his apology or remorse.
If only we could have stuck a few goals past 'em to lighten our heavy hearted mood as we waited for the bad news about both Vic and Mikky...
And as it gets brushed under the carpet for news on the Champions League I hope its binds us together for our now even tougher run in...
Friday, 13 February 2009
When we met I was a cul -de -sac of nutrition by Iceland,but in the years we have been hitched I have blossomed into a gastro ponce of the highest calibre.
Along with my taste buds being led down a culinary path and my stomach discovering all manner a new joys a terrors...I now love to eat out....It's has become a genuine passion.
So last night to celebrate the 4th year of our union we went to Maze Grill a Grosvenor Square based eatery that comes under the Gordon Ramsey umbrella.
With Jason Atherton at the helm this is a chic and understated establishment,In the main restaurant the food nods to the head chef's time at El Bulli,but in the grill you can expect fabulous meat and delectable sides.We opted for the grill,we were led to our olive green leather C-shaped seating by our attentive waiter, being allowed to settle before being asked what liquid pleasures we fancied I choose the classic Ricard and Nix had an apple and sage martini.The martini had that dangerous "I could drink that all night" vibe about it,and the Ricard...well you can't bugger that up,so onto the menu.
We were then shown the goods,our waiter brought over the slabs of varyingly aged and priced beef like a drug dealer with his best stash,he told us all about the texture,taste and history of the delicious looking flesh and then scurried off to get our starters.The menu allows you to mix 'n' match in a tapas stylee,so that's what we did, ordering- soft shell crab,beef and pimento peppers,salt and pepper squid and last but not least pigs on toast(bone marrow served on small toasts with Parmesan and rocket).
All were good with the soft shell crab rising to the top,it was a deep fried wonder, crunching first then bursting with ozone, a sweet seafood treat.
The sommelier then helped us pick out a well priced Alamos Bondara(big Argentinian red) to accompany our eagerly anticipated steaks,my wife went for the Hereford grass fed 25 day aged sirloin,I opted for the Casterbridge grain fed 21 day rib eye.To truly bust the belt buckle we added fries,and gratin to go with it,after all what is steak without frite?
The beautifully seared meat was presented on wooden boards along with the sides and a hand mixed at the table steak sauce ,which was sweet,tangy and with a little background heat.Mine was a perfect woosie medium and my cave women wife had hers blue.The chatter stopped and into the quiet world of masticating we sank,only breaking the silence to remark on how much we were both enjoying ourselves.The boards were wiped clean and the debris was cleared by the well drilled staff,then came the desert.........
A bitter chocolate brownie and selection of cheese,job done....
Just to add a little fuzz to my now pleasure engulfed body I had a 12year old Rosebank.
The combo of the decadent dark chocolate and tart cheeses washed down with the heady water of life really ended this experience on the right note.
Then came the bill.............
£170 notes, that included a pretty healthy tip..not bad at all.
To sum it up-
Nice atmos,great staff,great grub and not to steep a mark up on the booze...
Also this place does a very reasonable set lunch,well worth a look....
So on with the coats and off into the drizzle to hail a cab to speed us northward to change into