To read or not to read – To blog or not to blog?

Written by CarlitoII

Fabrication. Bending the truth. Saying that which is not true. Lying. Fantasising. Add to this any number of adjectives that sum up what a football supporter has to put up with in the course of feeding his obsession. It is increasingly difficult to know what to believe. Does anyone really care about the truth?

A good story, as they say, has legs. But the “Fabregas to Barcelona” story of last summer was the most Godzilla-sized millipede ever witnessed. Similarly, the “Cesc disparages ref” story last week was a ridiculously nimble crustacean whereas the astonishing refereeing displayed by the same defamed ref was eel-like in its lack of limbs.

Never let a fact get in the way of a good story, it is said. The yards of column inches in our tabloid press devoted to “definite rumours” of Arsenal signings each transfer window demonstrate this perfectly. I will call out the free gossip rag on the tube for some of the more heinous examples but there are also a number of websites that seem to get a lot of coverage for breaking the ninth commandment as their stock in trade.

And herein lies the rub! We click on these websites or pick up these papers for the promise of the headline, the excitement of the story or the controversy of the author’s standpoint. These actions earn the “news” outlet their money – newspaper circulation and page clicks online attract advertising revenue. A worthy article saying that Mason had written nothing in his match report about any comments from Cesc might get a trickle of Gooners reading it but nothing like the avalanche of eejits who clicked on the “Cesc Ref Rant” headline.

But I can’t stop reading these lies, damned lies and transfer rumours. I want to know everything that’s going on with my club and have had to develop a “nonsense filter”. But now there are blogs (I know they’ve been here for a while but I’m new!) and twitter and facebook groups full of conjecture, speculation and supposition. How good is my filter now?

I have seen it argued recently that blogging is replacing journalism as a true conduit for news rather than rehashed press-statements. I find it hard to disagree that the overall standard of journalism has become sloppier, less investigative and less critical of the powers that be. I also think that in these times when anyone can cast aspersions on a man’s character, the paid journalists have a role to play in protecting the integrity of the information out there and not just picking up every rumour started in cyberspace.

Two articles recently have irked me. One claimed that Wenger was so thrifty because he was financially incentivised to make a profit on transfers. The other claimed that Rosicky was involved in deliberately throwing the Newcastle match. If either of these allegations appeared in a national newspaper they would expect to hear from the club’s lawyers but a website written by an anonymous author with an IP address outside the EU will probably be ignored. Yet some people will believe what they read, wherever they read it.

It obviously doesn’t help when managers deliberately obfuscate the truth, trying to send messages to future opponents, rivals in the transfer market, share holders etc. The number of wailing tweets I see complaining that “Wenger lied” just goes to show how powerful each written word is in fomenting opinion about anyone in the public eye. One of the dangers is the ‘witch-hunting’ tendency of the media to blame everything on foreigners, as has been much discussed on this forum lately.

I was going to end this piece by trying to decide whether it’s better to switch off the antenna that bring me this surplus of distortion and deception? Should I just get my Arsenal fix from arsenal.com, a reputable broadsheet and this fantastic forum of mainly sane people? I was going to ask whether the blogging community serves its purpose unless followed through with scrupulous attention to facts? But in both cases, I think I know the answer! You can fool some Gooners all of the time and all Gooners some of the time. But you can’t fool all Gooners all of the time!

183 Responses to To read or not to read – To blog or not to blog?

  1. Morning all

    Carlito, your post is so relevant today, I’ve just read how Jack didn’t ‘shine’ for England last night!!!!!!

    Was he supposed to have a couple of assists or score himself from his position of holding midfielder?????

  2. gnarleygeorge9 says:

    peaches

    speaking as an Arsenal supporter who’s address is outside EU, all that matters is whether Jack shines against Wolves.

  3. Rasp says:
    February 10, 2011 at 9:19 am (Edit)

    What the hell’s going on????

    Capello ‘bigs up’ Jack before the game and heaps the pressure on him. Jack had a really good 45 minutes, 93% pass completion, good tackles, showed for the ball and played with assurance – completely overshadowed fat fwank ….. and Capello appears unimpressed in the post match interview and the press/media are saying that he didn’t shine ffs.

    That’s bull. It was a great debut by a 19 year old, he held the team together.

  4. Morning gnarley

    Of course, you’re right it only really matters how he performs for Arsenal but Capello made a big deal about starting Jack, playing Jack in a different role than he plays for us and then poured scorn on his performance.

    Jack is 19 – its not really a nice way to treat him and he did have a great first half.

  5. Carlito11 says:

    I saw the player ratings on the Telegraph website this morning had given Glen Johnson a 7 and Theo and Jack just 6 each! Johnson was merked by the Danish winger time and time again! Still, if it keeps our players’ feet on the ground and stops them getting too “Billy Big Bollox” I don’t have a problem with it I guess.

  6. dandan says:

    Terrific stuff Carlito could not agree more. Personally there are just two blogs that I will allow any credence to including this one. As for our national press, my opinion on that is well documented on previous posts. Unfortunately one can no longer automatically rely on any publications, but rather must look to individuals who have earned your trust through the proven honesty, authenticity and quality of their writing.

  7. dandan says:

    I found my way to this blog by accident through a Newsfeed, what a happy accident that has proved to be given the trash like quality of so much that appears there.
    Jack had a very respectable half last night and will be a regular before long unfortunately

  8. Rasp says:

    Terrific post Carlito,

    I particularly liked – But the “Fabregas to Barcelona” story of last summer was the most Godzilla-sized millipede ever witnessed…

    I mentioned in my comment at the tail end of yesterday’s post that Jack is not getting the credit he is due after what I thought was a very impressive and composed performance. He wasn’t the slightest bit fazed by the occassion.

  9. gnarleygeorge9 says:

    peaches

    Jack Wilshire could be anything he wants to be in footy. The sky is the limit.

    The England national team is a collection of recycled no bodys that will win nothing.

    So who cares what the press say or what the has been Capello thinks.

    We all know, so that will do me 🙂

  10. charybdis1966 says:

    Morning all, a good point to raise Carlito given that I saw the so called more responsible reporting of the broad sheets sink to the level of goal.com.
    It was the “Cesc roll of dishonour” story by the Telegraph that showed the broad sheets are playing the tabloid, gutter press at their own game in that it was a list of half-truths, rumours and fabricated bollocks complied as a list to prove that Cesc was player so heinous that Joey Barton was a saint in comparison.
    While blogs obviously have to be mindful of “clicks received” to a degree they have no need to drive an agenda(like the Anti Arsenal one that TalkSnide have) and are not bound by editorial slants.

  11. tommystout says:

    Quality post Carlito, morning all,
    makes my blood boil the amount of bad press that plagues the internet. thank goodness for the filter feeder on newsnow, now i can be selective.
    i guess you know when you are doing something right when a footballer is following your blog on twitter – i.e. cesc and arseblog. Have we got any followers at arsenalarsenal. Carlito is doing his best to plug this site, well done!

  12. Rasp says:

    I think in general, the quality of blogs is slowly improving. If I find a new site I always look to see if there is advertising.

    It’s quite simple. If there are no ads, its a labour of love, therefore hopefully you will read a club-centric attempt at the truth; if there are ads, it will be characterised by sensational headlines that seldom are backed by a story of any merit.

  13. Smith14 says:

    The rise of the internet – blogs, twitter, facebook, youtube etc – has been good for allowing people to come together in common purpose and share views etc. The only problem is that it does allow people to publish what they like, whethert it’s well reasoned or not. This probably sounds terribly undemocratic but there are lots of opinions on the internet that would be better of left in the authors head. That’s why I stick to sites like this that value reasonable debate.

    On another level, we’re lucky to be Arsenal fans. We know from experience that 99.9% of transfer rumours are nonsense and as a result, it’s best to ignore them. Most of our transfers come from nowhere and are a name nonoe of us had expected.

  14. gnarleygeorge9 says:

    😳 sorry great post Carlito

  15. gnarleygeorge9 says:

    The Arsenal could be 1 point from top by Sunday morning (AEDST) 😆

  16. gnarleygeorge9 says:

    City will either do united or draw. I reckon the flood gates will open on united now. Players like giggs & scholes won’t be able to hold th tide back anymore.

    Arsenal to finish top; man city 2nd.

  17. On another subject, I’m sure I saw an interview with Daniel Levy the other night where he said that totts had realised they wouldn’t be able to afford to build the stadium that they wanted on their existing site and that’s why he was sure that they would get the Olympic stadium.

  18. gnarleygeorge9 says:

    What, given the olympic stadium?

  19. It doesn’t really matter now gnarley because I think its going to West Ham anyway. What’s intersting is that there are still land purchasing issues and they’ve pretty much come to the conclusion that the building project is a non-starter – doesn’t look, at the moment, like they’re going to be building a new Stadium either 🙂 ha ha ha

  20. It could have been an old interview re-hashed for this weeks decision, just found this from the guardian

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/sport/2011/jan/21/daniel-levy-tottenham-olympic-stadium

    although in the light of todays post I probably shouldn’t believe any of it 🙄

  21. jollymike says:

    Good post! It’s so frustrating with all the lies that we witness. I think it’s fun to read all the stories about us breaking the bank in the summer. The stories started one day after the transfer deadline shut… Do anybody think that Arsenal forgot to buy them the day before?

    The Press is just about bringing in money to the papers so that they have work to go to in the morning. Journos that follow sport are the worst of the lot.

  22. gnarleygeorge9 says:

    Oh!

    Hey peaches, is Johan going to start against Wolves or is that just paper talk?

  23. Gooner in Exile says:

    Great post Carlito, I was lucky enough to find this reasoned site amongst the reactionary majority.

    My first post was cautious and I requested not to be flamed seeing the bile on some of the other blogs after the Wigan game. Rasp welcomed me and I stayed.

    As for where I get my news it is restricted to Arsenal.com and the BBC, on twitter I follow the players and a few other respected arsenal bloggers, Eastlower, Arseblog to name two. But they don’t often deal in rumour, more on humour. This is also why I subscribe to Tuesday Club podcast (previously Up for Grabs), Alan Davies, Ian Stone and others provide a fun outlook on the club and don’t often get drawn on inadequacies, most importantly they talk like fans who care.

  24. There are some that say he’ll start and others that say AW will keep him wrapped up until Barca – bruised knee schmoozed knee – he’s a bloke isn’t he, who doesn’t play football with a bruised knee???????

    I suppose with his history of knee injury its worth being careful but I’d play him.

  25. Now we have the oracle that is GiE with his trusted knowledge of defensive duties we have to be guided by him whether Squidgy and Kosser can be good partnership.

    What say you Gooner in Exile if its the Sqidge and Kos on Saturday?

  26. Big Raddy says:

    Very pertinent post Carlito. I very much enjoy your writing style. In fact your post is a shining example of the wonders of Arsenal blogs, it could not be written in a paper who would hardly question their own misleading fantasists.

    I have taken a few years to filter the blogs, reading only 3 or 4 and commenting only on AA.

    It was the ridiculous assertion that AW was financially rewarded for his frugality which stopped my allegiance to another blog. Tens of thousands of Gooners believed that crap and it made my blood boil.

    BTW. Thinking of other blogs, Arseblog today has a very funny couple of para’s about Spain’s potential trip to Rome …..

  27. Red Arse says:

    Hi Gnarley,

    I love your straight to the point comments. You obviously have a fantastic bullshit filter. 🙂

    For example, I allowed my mind to dwell on the why’s and wherefore’s of Capello’s pre-match praise for Lil’Jack as compared to his post match non commital comments.

    Then I read your comment;

    “The England national team is a collection of recycled nobodies that will win nothing.

    So who cares what the press say or what the has been Capello thinks”.

    You are so right—it stopped my mind from dwelling pointlessly. 🙂

  28. Wonderman says:

    Morning all, very good read Carlito. There is a saying that “we are what we repeatedly do”. Following that mantra

    a)everytime we see Arsenal bid -anything more than £15m for a player we should KNOW it is rubbish …we just dont do that
    b)The next time Wenger says ‘ We are in the market for x’ ignore it. Over the years he has never pre warned clubs of what he is looking for

    With a plethora of sites on the web, I think we all know which ones have sensible debates/news and those that act as some form of tension release. The rise of Newsnow has given many of these sites air they would not have ordinarily received.

    As for the journos, our papers are divded between broadsheet and tabloid, left and right why would anyone believe that they do not hold a bias in football terms

    I say treat the lying websites like you would junk mail….bin it without a second glance

  29. Gooner in Exile says:

    On the Jacks performance last night it will always be difficult for him in the Centre Midfield playing for England.

    I watched him take up many great positions, but as there were a couple of players near him the ball was kicked hopefully long, at Arsenal he would have received the pass played it back moved and got the ball back.

    It happened a couple of times when linking up with Rooney but all too often the ball was humped over his head, or players around him found it impossible to pass to him between red shirts.

    It’s at time watching England I am so happy Arsene manages our club. Even Denmark were playing prettier football in the first half, one twos and give and go making space.

  30. Red Arse says:

    Hi Carlito, 🙂

    Another classic Post which is hard hitting but not offensive or vulgar. Well done, again! 🙂

    We are blessed on this blog by both Peaches and Rasp, who administer the blog in a way that makes us all feel we belong, (see the comments above) and all for love of the club that is a huge part of their lives.

    We are also lucky to have so many gifted (and opinionated) 🙂 authors who present a huge variety of well thought out and reasoned subject matter everyday, so we can discuss, disagree or commiserate with each other about.

  31. Gooner in Exile says:

    Squidge and Kos….no comment 😉

    Seriously there is no reason they should not play well together. They are both good defenders, but even though they are both French they appear to have a communication issue.

    If Kos played deeper and allowed Squidgy to attack the ball we should be ok, one of them has to adapt to suit the others game, Kos as the younger of the two is probably less set in his ways.

  32. Rasp says:

    Morning GiE,

    I noticed that Rooney tried to play proper football with Jack too. Fat Fwank and Gerrard seem to have an aversion to passing to Arsenal players (particularly Theo).

    I’d have liked to have seen Jack playing alongside Scott Parker instead of Lumplard who in my opinion should not play for England again. He didn’t even have the excuse of ‘not being able to play in the same team as Gerard’ this time. Parker might have the sense to drop back when LJ goes on a forward run unlike Lampard.

  33. Big Raddy says:

    I went to the game last night though not with the England fans. It transpires one must be a member of the England Fan Club to get waway tickets.

    Micky. The pre-match fare was Tuborg, Carlsberg and Hot Dogs (very popular and very tasty over here).

    Atmosphere was almost non-existent. The Roli-gans (Roli being Danish for Relaxed) were truly Roli. Hardly a chant all night and the England fans (2,500) being aware this was a friendly were full of banter but little organised chanting. (apart from the usual and awful “No Surrender to the IRA” crap)

    Our lads were great and it was a privilege to see JW’s debut. I was delighted when Capello replaced him. Nik was pants, just pants. Dire control, wandering into no-man’s land to try and get the ball thereby giving the Danish MF no outlet ball etc etc.

    I though TW played well but no-one passed to him apart from Rooney slamming cross field balls. The only times he got the ball in space Theo created something.

    Early last year I was asked on AA if there were any young Danes coming through – I replied Eriksen and Kjær. I believe Eriksen will go South from Ajax – he is a superstar in the making. DB10 apparently told AW about him sometime ago.

    Kjær we know about – hopefully he will have a poor year and AW can pick him up for not too much in summer (as if!!)

    All in all a fine night out. Despite it being a mild night by Scandi standards the game was played in a covered stadium (unlike Wembley the roof of the 30y.o. Parken stadium is retractable.

  34. charybdis1966 says:

    Thanks for your insightful comments on the match last night Radders, will we be seeing you down at the Grove this season again? I’m going on Saturday, hopefully buoyed by a Draw or a Shitty win in the Mank derby.

  35. Rasp says:

    Raddy,

    I heard the crowd singing the Bergkamp ‘Winter Wonderland’ song – was that to get up the noses of the Danish supporters or were the words different?

    It got me to thinking (and you may say that it is sacrilege) that the name Jack Wilshire would fit perfectly in the Bergkamp Wonderland song. I just hope he progresss to achieve the same recognition as DB10. I have no doubt he possesses the talent.

    One Jack Wilshere
    There’s only one Jack Wilshere
    Walking along
    with Song Bilong
    Walking in a Wilshere wonderland 😛

  36. Big Raddy says:

    Chary. Sure hope so. Must get the fixture list out and discuss things with Peaches.

    Envious of your attendance at the weekend. Us armchair viewers get a totally different picture of the match. It is much harder to pick up tactics and patterns

  37. Big Raddy says:

    A “Bendtner Wonderland” 😉

  38. charybdis1966 says:

    Cool Radders, there are about 6-8 home games left and it is good to be able to attend(it’ll be consecutive home games for me – excellent stuff), especially now as the weather turns a bit milder and there’s less danger of freezing your knacks off during the second half of evening kick offs.

  39. Gooner in Exile says:

    Back on topic, a friend of mine yesterday posted a tweet of what he thought Glastonbury line up would be this year. His tweet before and immediately after stressed he had it on no good authority and it was purely his guess.

    In half an hour the same line up was being spouted as gospel by various “reputable” music news twitter feeds as if gospel and from their sources!

  40. Red Arse says:

    CharyB,

    When you say 6 to 8 home games left, it makes one realise how quickly the EPL end game will come.

    Nerves are already beginning to chitter! 🙂

  41. Gooner in Exile says:

    Quote of LJ from BBC website

    “I knew I would only play 45 minutes. It was a great experience and hopefully I can get more. At half-time I was desperate to get out but the boss said ‘you have got some big games coming up for your club’. Playing with Rooney and Lampard was great and I’m going to treasure that forever.”

    His tweets last night and this morning have been great too, unfortunately I think it will be very hard for AW to ever convince him that he is “injured” and therefore cannot go to represent his country.

    He clearly loves playing, and has just tweeted a pic of his first England shirt signed by the squad and he is off to get it framed this morning. Good on him.

    As a note the Beeb website says Capello was praising of Jacks performance and there is even a few positive comments in Phil McNultys blog.

    Thank god Jacks a gooner!

  42. Big Raddy says:

    RA. Hold Hard Man!

  43. charybdis1966 says:

    Yeah, we’re heading into the home stretch Red A, it’s 7 home League games and the home leg of the fixture against Bankruptalona, so a minimum of 8 home games left.
    I’ve got my ticket for Sunderland and hope to get to two more – it’s squeaky bum time !

  44. Gooner in Exile says:

    7 home PL games left, 6 away this is squeaky bum time I guess!

    I have tickets the Grove for Stoke (re arranged to Wednesday night), and hope to get tickets for Blackburn and less likely Villa. Sunderland sold out ultra quick, will hope there are some on Ticket Exchange and may even make that too.

    Away games there are only two I see any likelihood of getting, Bolton and Stoke. The others have good support or limited away end availability so sell out to Gold and TC members in no time.

  45. Carlito11 says:

    Hi all,
    Back quickly- thanks for all the encouraging remarks- wasn’t sure whether it was coherent enough to be published so thanks to Peaches and rasp for putting this one one there!
    Some great comments as always- Rasp I like your “are there ads?” filter- a useful benchmark I will use. We have started the Wilshere wonderland song in block 115 with limited success (as there are few real singers up there). I like the “with Song Bilong” part- will add it next time!
    GiE- your Glastonbury anecdote is a perfect example of the cannibalistic tendencies of the current media and the willingness to present rumour as fact- very trying!

  46. Gooner in Exile says:

    Two squeaky bums in the space of a couple of minutes, this can’t be good for the community

  47. Rasp says:

    GiE,

    Jack is learning fast. He was also much more impressive in his interview after the game compared to a year ago. He was far less ‘Stevenage’ (apologies to any bloggers who live there – but you know what I mean)

  48. Big Raddy says:

    depends upon whether they are in harmony

  49. Carlito11 says:

    I’m still trying to get Rocky’s son’s Djourou song going- should be easier now the tide of opinion has swung decisively in his favour!

  50. charybdis1966 says:

    GiE – I hope you guys give Shawcross the welcome he deserves at the Stoke game, plenty of “There’s only one Aaron Ramsay” and “Ryan- you dirty northern bas***d”.

  51. London says:

    Great read Carlito

    Really enjoyed it.

  52. London says:

    Sometimes you are funny Rasp, far less Stevenage? It reminds me of the Catherine Tate sketch when she says a name of a place, thought of as common, in a posh voice: Stevenage! Run away children, run away.

  53. Gooner in Exile says:

    Chary I was thinking more “Ryan Shawcross is a ****” to the London Bridge is falling down, but probably too rude for Grove stewards

  54. Rasp says:

    I remember that sketch London – it was particularly funny because the area that made her so afraid for her children’s safety was in fact ‘Tottingham’ 😆

  55. charybdis1966 says:

    Variations on that theme will get the desired effect GiE – I don’t believe the bravado that Puggiliss comes out with that any hostile reception he get’s will inspire him.
    The muntah was in tears when he realised what he did – what kind of a patsy is he?

  56. London says:

    This is what I meant.

  57. Carlito11 says:

    Chary- going back to your 10.03- which I think raises a very pertinent point. 15 years ago the broadsheets had far fewer football articles and if you wanted to know the ifs and maybes you had to pick up a tabloid to discover potential transfer targets etc. When the broadsheets scaled up their coverage of football they stated to include a “tabloid rumours” section, which I loved beacuse it was a digest of the stories flying around but you knew that you had to take them with a handful of salt. Seen from today’s perspective, however, it looks like this could have been the beginning of the end as the lines have blurred massively now. The driving force is obviously the fans and their search for inside info. I bet that the Transfer Rumours section on BBC Sport is one of the most clicked sections of the site… I can’t rationalise this behaviour (my behaviour) of searching for information that I know will probably prove to be false!

  58. Carlito11 says:

    If there were more libel prosecutions some websites could change their names: http://www.gaol.com and http://www.courtoffside.com as a start

  59. charybdis1966 says:

    Yes Carlito, I was surprised that the Telegraph had allowed that sort of “article” normally they stick to factual objective reporting. In that so called roll of dishonour they tried to say Hleb accused Cesc of being a selfish shooter and the old chestnut about Denilson reckoning Cesc lacked leadership skills. Of course they brought up Phil Orange’s disproved accusations about spitting on the pitch, at Horton, at Horton’s feet, in the tunnel at his feet -he wasn’t sure as he was making it up anyway – just like Moyes did.
    As I said, half-truths, misquotes and fabrications used to jump on an anti-Arsenal bandwagon.

  60. Gooner in Exile says:

    The only reason for reading the Gossip section of the Beeb website to see what ‘arry has to say to get media attention.

    This week

    “In light of current transfer market Gareth Bale must be worth £50million, but we don’t want to sell him”

    Looking forward to the £100 million we’ll receive from Barca in summer for Cesc then 😉

  61. Red Arse says:

    Following hard on Carlito’s Post, a perfect example of misleading info is in most papers today.

    Deloitte’s have released their “Rich List” of European clubs, that shows Real, Barca and Manure in 1st, 2nd, 3rd of the “biggest” clubs.

    How so? Well the list represents the revenue streams of the clubs surveyed. These streams presumably include “sales” of everything from shirts to season tickets and property. (I say presumably because I have never been arsed to obtain a set of accounts for any of them, not even my beloved Arsenal.

    A friend (and yes I do have one) 🙂 said he did not understand how this made them the biggest clubs, because he understood that Real, Barca and Manure were metres deep in dung pellets of debt.

    As usual the answer to that, as any accountant or lawyer will tell you, depends what your definition of biggest is, and what you are comparing.

    For example, biggest shirt sales boosting a club’s revenue streams might indicate that it is the biggest club based on the number of fans it has. What it does not show, however, in profit terms, is how much of the profit realised on those sales is then passed onto those players who have shirt sale image rights in their contracts. So biggest in number of shirts sold (fans), does not necessarily mean biggest in profit terms.

    So how would an accountant calculate biggest?

    Profitability in terms of gross and net margins are key, as is the often overlooked impact of cash flow and liquidity. Selling 20m shirts for £10 each which costs the club £30 may make the revenue stream look good good but would be a disaster.

    So the Balance Sheet is the place to look. I will not bore you with too much detail, but examination of a balance sheet by the use of critical ration analysis, would quickly reveal the net worth of a company, its ratio of debtors to creditors, its cash flow performance etc.

    This, to 90% of the population, is boring, tedious stuff and totally unsexy. Barca appeared on the verge of bankruptcy last year and could not afford Cesc, but by the injection of “municipal” funds on a lease back arrangement as well as the sale of naming rights on it’s shirts, stopped it going bust and suddenly there it is 2nd in the biggest club list.

    To attract the eye the newspapers only give the headline figures, and no doubt City will be at or near the top of the list within a couple of years, even if they “owe” their Sheikh a billion pounds which would take a lifetime to repay, if that ever became a possibility.

    My friend was right to ask how the “Rich List” is calculated and does it mean anything?
    To those fans of the “biggest” or “richest” clubs it does as being top of any league gives them bragging rights, even if they don’t understand what it really means.

  62. kelsey says:

    Carlito,

    I wrote a post a few months back on the lines of “are there too many arsenal blogs” and in a way you have highlighted some of the things we discussed then .
    I still don’t really understand why so many in the media praise us for our fotball and at the same time slam us at every opportunity.
    take the keeper situation.not a week goes by when they come out in unison saying that is one of or weakest downfalls, yet Cech against liverpool and generally since his head injury has made several mistakes.Hart is another,who now looks decidedly doggy,just to give a couple of examples, yet hardly a word is written .

  63. Rasp says:

    That’s brilliant Carlito 😆

    gaol.com is one of my least favourite ‘lying sites’ not least because I still feel compelled to click on their anti-headline although I know it will be yet another fabricated story.

  64. Carlito11 says:

    Kelsey- your post was at the forefront of my mind when writing this one. It took awhile a bit of experience of arsenal’s online presence before I could put my own ideas together on the subject.

  65. Rasp says:

    Haha London,

    I’d love to see that clip up on the screens at the Emirates before every game…….

  66. Red Arse says:

    Hi Kelsey, you are spot on.

    On my way home last night, I caught the end of the Adrian Durham, Talksport show. I could not resist listening as the subject under discussion was Arsenal.

    My blood boiled to hear him was smashing into Arsenal and their fans for their lack of class in the aftermath of the Newcastle game. You know the “whinging Wenger”, fans blaming the innocent ref, blah di blah.

    But do you know what made me really steam? It was the so called Arsenal fans ‘phoning up and agreeing with him. Nauseating!! How dare they call themselves fans sucking up to that creep.

    Anyone else who caught the show will agree with me that it made you ashamed they call themselves Gooners!

  67. Rasp says:

    Hi RA,

    I agree with you, but I think it was interesting to see that AW did not make a huge fuss in his interview after the game. I think he was being pragmatic and realises that however bad the refereeing decisions are against us, it is counterproductive to complain too strongly as it seems to inspire the next ref to be even worse.

  68. Carlito11 says:

    RA Thanks for the account’s perspective, showing up yet more media fabrications. I do have to take issue with you though, “This, to 90% of the population, is boring, tedious stuff and totally unsexy.” Are you saying that 10% find it sexy? 😉

  69. London says:

    RA

    I heard that show and felt exactly the same as you, Durham was bad enough but those “Arsenal supporters” phoning in sucking up to him were shameful.

  70. Carlito11 says:

    I tried to get a #BoycottTalkSport hashtag trending on twitter 2 weeks ago when they were slating Cesc’s leadership and again when they announced the Gray and Keys appointments. Not much joy so far but imagine if all Arsenal fans boycotted them? It would be a glorious show of strength and probably reduce their listenership by a third!

  71. Carlito11 says:

    It’s part of the same dilemma though- we know they are wind up merchants with an anti-Arsenal agenda but still tune in! Are we all masochists?

  72. Red Arse says:

    OK, OK, I’m obviously boring the arses off you guys as no one has even said “hi” to me. 🙂

    So, to apologise, I thought I would let you have a quiz I was given while waiting for my appointment yesterday.

    How many of the following items, once common, do you remember?

    1. Sweet cigarettes
    2. Coffee shops with juke boxes
    3. Home milk delivery in glass bottles
    4. Party lines on the telephone
    5. Newsreels before the film
    6. TV test card patterns that came on at night after the last show, and were there until TV shows started again. (There were only 2 channels [if you were fortunate])
    7. Peashooters
    8. 78 rpm records
    9. 45 RPM records
    10. Hi-fi’s
    11. Metal ice trays with levers
    12. Blue flashbulbs
    13. Cork popguns
    14. Wash tub wringers

    If you remembered 0-3 items = You’re still young
    If you remembered 3-6 = You are getting older
    If you remembered 7-10 = Don’t tell your age
    If you remembered 11-14 = You’re positively ancient!

    I did not score many, but nothing to do with age! 🙂

  73. Red Arse says:

    Damn, you all said “Hi” while I was typing!! 🙂

    Double apologies!!

  74. Red Arse says:

    Carlito,

    I was treasury manager, at a large public company some years ago, and credit management was part of my bailiwick.

    There were a few of us who did find balance sheet analysis sexy! Oh the shame!! 🙂

  75. Carlito11 says:

    I got 9 RA and I thought I was still young! 😦

  76. Geoff Strong says:

    Hi RA, I got 13, but at least I don’t appear to have alzheimers (yet).

  77. dandan says:

    Thanks Guys…..That’s me sorted then I remember them all.

    RA when the beeb discussed the the rich list this morning they said Arsenal were 5th but went on to say that all the revenue from property was not included, I believe the figure was £150 odd million which if added to the figure shown would probably make us top, for what its worth

  78. Carlito11 says:

    RedArse- you’ve probably heard this one before but it probably applies to Barcelona/ Real Madrid/ ManUre in light of your earlier post!
    There are two sides of the balance sheet – the left side and the right side. On the left side, there is nothing right, and on the right side, there is nothing left!

  79. dandan says:

    I even remember the milk being delivered by horse and cart, LOL

  80. Red Arse says:

    That’s magnificent Carlito! 🙂

    Moving from country to country as a child it was pretty much a mystery to me.

    On the back of that quiz, there was a message, which you might recognise too.

    “I was asked by my grandchild the other day, ‘What was your favourite ‘fast food’ when you were growing up?’

    ‘We didn’t have fast food when I was growing up,’ I informed him, ‘except for Fish & Chip shops and we ate it all so unhygenically from newspaper wrappers’
    All the other food was slow.’

    ‘C’mon, seriously.. Where did you eat?’
    ‘It was a place called ‘home,’ I explained. ‘Mum cooked every day and when Dad got home from work, we sat down
    together at the dining room table, and if I didn’t like what she put on my plate, I was allowed to sit there until I did like it.’

    ‘By this time, my grandson was laughing so hard I was afraid he was going to suffer serious internal damage, so I didn’t tell him the part about how I had to have permission to leave the table.

    ‘But here are some other things I would have told him about my childhood if I’d figured his system could have handled it:

    Some parents NEVER owned their own house, never wore jeans, never set foot on a golf course, never travelled out of the country and credit cards had not been
    invented.

    My parents never drove me to school. I had my mothers bicycle that weighed probably 50 pounds, and only had one speed, (slow).

    We didn’t have a television in our house until the Queens Coronation. It was, of course, black and white, and the station went off the air at 10 pm, after playing the national anthem and epilogue; it came back
    on the air at about 4 p.m. and there was usually locally produced news and everything was live…..or on film.

    I never had a telephone in my room. The only phone was on a party line. Before you could dial, you had to listen and make sure some people you didn’t know weren’t already using the line.

    Pizzas were not delivered to our home… But milk was.

    All newspapers were delivered by boys and many boys delivered newspapers –My brother delivered a newspaper, seven days a week. He had to get up at 6AM every morning.

    Film stars kissed with their mouths shut. At least, they did in the films. There were no movie ratings because all movies were responsibly produced for everyone to enjoy viewing, without profanity or violence, (except cowboy films) or almost anything offensive.

    If you grew up in a generation before there was fast food, you may want to share some of these memories with your children or grandchildren. Just don’t blame me if they bust a gut laughing.’

    I found that potted history absolutely fascinating! 🙂

  81. Red Arse says:

    Dandan,

    Thanks for that, I am irredeemably shallow and will bear your property sales point in mind if any Manure fan tries to brag to me!! 🙂

  82. Red Arse says:

    I had not heard that balance sheet summary, Carlito. One for my “funny” file. 🙂

  83. kelsey says:

    Hi red arse.

    Where you by chance in the government during the Suez Crisis.

  84. kelsey says:

    I once lived in Cricklewitch and remember the trams,but you RA are obviously the oldest on here and therefore deserve much more respect.

  85. RockyLives says:

    Rasp
    “Walking along
    with Song Bilong”
    Brilliant – I’m going to start singing it.

  86. dandan says:

    It is also very accurate RA, the first fast food, as you would know it, Were Wimpy bars that sold skinny Burghers, Pizza wasn’t delivered because it didn’t exist, as did not Big Macs, Kentucky fried or American style muffins.

    I never saw any of this stuff until I first went to Canada in 1972. The pace of progress over the last 100 years is remarkable my gran who died in the 1970s went from men walking in front of cars with red flags to men walking on the moon.
    And the compute age is even more astounding, my first modern calculator at work was mechanical and had a handle on the side you had to pull to make the typeface jump up and print on a roll of paper and that was in the 1960s.

    But those days had there compensations

    Arsenal won the Fairs Cup and then did the double

  87. kelsey says:

    and when the girls said no, “what kind of girl do you think i am ” they invariably meant the opposite 🙂

  88. dandan says:

    Kelsey behave LOL

  89. RockyLives says:

    Hello all AA-ers
    Great post Carlito – lovely writing style and very pertinent points. It seems to me that there are more active Arsenal blog sites than for any other club. I wonder why that is?

    Redders
    I took your test and scored 0. So either I’m very young, or the Alzheimers tablets are not working today…
    …but I do remember rag and bone men (with horse-drawn carts) and blokes who used to go round the streets with a little machine for sharpening knives and tools…

    Also Redders, I’m surprised you haven’t taken issue with Carlito’s description of this site comprising ‘mainly sane people’. What would FIL have to say about that?

    And does Carlito mean all the people on here are mainly sane (ie sane for most of the time) but are also sometimes mad? Or that the majority of people are sane and a minority are mad?

  90. RockyLives says:

    dandan
    I remember when the first McDonalds in the Uk opened up (in Woolwich, as it happens, in 1974). Being used only to Wimpy bars (with their wonderfully named ‘Bender Brunch’) I was completely thrown the first time I tried McDonalds.
    They gave me all my food (a burger and some chips) in paper packages on a tray. I stood looking at the server for a while and then asked where I got my plate and my knife and fork. She gave me a long suffering look and explained that I was supposed to eat it with my fingers.
    I was genuinely shocked but, on looking around, realised that everyone sitting in the restaurant was, indeed, eating without cutlery and plates.
    It’s hard to credit, but back in those days there was just no restaurant where you ate with your fingers. The only finger-eating was when you got something from the fish and chip shop, so it was a mind-blowing concept.
    The increasing informality of eating is one of the great social changes of our times.

  91. Red Arse says:

    Kelsey,

    Where to start? 🙂 No government would have someone like me. And who or what was “the Suez crisis”? Probably the Egyptian independence was it?

    I love being given credit, bit like a puppy having its tummy tickled and rolling its eyes, but they were not memories unfortunately! 🙂

    I have never been too successful with women, so it has never gone as far as “what sort of girl do think I am?”
    It was either rumpy pumpy or “on yer bike!” 🙂

  92. Red Arse says:

    Sorry, not really with it today. (what’s new?)

    Should be; (not “my” memories unfortunately) —- and —– (what sort of girl do “you” think I am?).

    Rocky, I will ask Sharkey to alert FIL when he comes on. He will soon sort Carlito out! 🙂

  93. Red Arse says:

    Guys,

    The response to that quiz and the message has been fantastic. I know it is not practicable, but it would be wonderful to meet all you guys and hear more of your memories.

    You have already shared some of your Arsenal memories, but these little glimpses of a time rapidly disappearing are tantalising to someone who has not experienced them!!

  94. RockyLives says:

    Careful Redders, you’ll scare off the young ‘uns.

  95. RockyLives says:

    But thinking about it Redders, I wonder if it would be possible to arrange a AA regulars’ get-together?
    I know many regulars have met each other, but I could pass any of you in the street and have no idea that a friend was walking by.

  96. Geoff Strong says:

    An AA meeting, do we all stand up one at a time and say…

    “I am an Arsenal fan”

  97. RockyLives says:

    Geoff 🙂

  98. dandan says:

    Rocky we used to go to the Chinese Restuarant that had just opened in Harlow late Saturday night after cricket when the bar had closed. This was high adventure indeed in 1959 and we thought very daring I was 16 and playing for an adult side.

  99. Red Arse says:

    Geoff,

    Isn’t it more like “My car is Kaput, I am stuck on the M1, please send help”. 🙂

  100. dandan says:

    Our car blew a head gasket on the MI on the way to Stoke City in the double year 1970/71 it must have known we were going to lose 5 – 0. It was the only match I didnt see that season.

  101. RockyLives says:

    dandan
    Total respect. Even your car’s a Gooner. Not to mention a goner.

  102. Red Arse says:

    Dandan, Rocky, 🙂

  103. Red Arse says:

    And what’s a wimpy. Is it an effeminate wuss? 🙂

  104. charybdis1966 says:

    Red A – I remembered 5 of your list- confirms what I know: “I’m getting older”, something I’m realising with a growing and distinct sense of chagrin day by day. 😦

  105. Red Arse says:

    CharyB,

    From your writing style I suspect you are a spring chicken still! 🙂

    Perhaps you can tell me, I’m not a smoker, but I cannot get my head around a “sweet cigarette”. What did they do? Stick the tobacco in molasses or something? Yeuk!

  106. charybdis1966 says:

    Red A – a writer friend of mine is always laughing her head off at my persistent splitting of infinitives so my writing style may leave much to be desired. I never studied English past A/O level while that was her degree – so yah boo to her !

    I used to collect Space1999 sweet cigareetes(basically they were just sweets shaped in the form of cigarettes) and I always liked ones with Eagle transporters and Helena Russell pictures on them the best.

  107. Big Raddy says:

    Young person here (well, compared to Kelsey).

    Strange how I remember things like a Jamboree bag but cannot recall where I went on holiday last year!

    Just watched the France/ Brazil friendly. Diaby played well as did Sagna. We have such a talented squad. France had a huge DM called Diarra (A) who plays for Bourdeaux and could be a fine 2 season signing as back-up to Song

  108. Carlito11 says:

    “And does Carlito mean all the people on here are mainly sane (ie sane for most of the time) but are also sometimes mad? Or that the majority of people are sane and a minority are mad?” I believe the site is merely mad when the wind blows from the North or North West (to continue with my Shakespeare rips offs from the post)!

  109. Carlito11 says:

    Speaking of “the Dane”- that young Eriksen looks to be quite a player! looks a bit like a Nasri style attacking midfielder

  110. dandan says:

    Actually what does it matter if you break the rules and make grammatical errors as long as it is intelligible and true, you believe in what you are writing and it is not deliberately insulting to your readers.
    If you consider the age span on here and the many places that posters live around the world it would be most strange if we had any other uniformity than a love of our club.

  111. Red Arse says:

    Carlito,

    Are you sure that’s a Shakespeare rip off? Or did he rip it off? 🙂 I learnt this at school!!

    When the wind is in the east,
    ‘Tis neither good for man nor beast;
    When the wind is in the north,
    The skillful Fisher goes not forth;
    When the wind is in the south,
    It blows the bait in the fishes’ mouth;
    When the wind is in the west,
    Then ’tis at the very best.

  112. Carlito11 says:

    Good tactics blog on Wilshere’s performance last night http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thefootballtacticsblog/2011/02/wilshere.html

  113. Red Arse says:

    True, Dandan!

  114. kelsey says:

    i think the AA agm should be in Marbella 😉

  115. Red Arse says:

    Raddy,

    There are so many Diarra’s about. Is he the ex-Pool Diarra (Alisou)? Certainly is a big guy!

  116. kelsey says:

    I have a small house so can only put up about 14 of you.

  117. Red Arse says:

    Sounds good to me Kelsey. 🙂 We will have to get Peaches and Cream, sorry, Rasper, to organise it! 🙂

  118. kelsey says:

    if you can’t laugh at this you never will.

  119. kelsey says:

    did you spot the deliberate mistake.

    he says BPL not EPL

  120. Carlito11 says:

    Kelsey, that is a bit special! Love the way he’s downloaded some lyrics somewhere but no idea of the tunes!

  121. RockyLives says:

    kelsey
    love that guy

  122. Carlito11 says:

    RA- it’s this quote “I Am but Mad North-northwest: When the Wind is Southerly I Know a Hawk from a Handsaw”, same as “To be or not to be” and “herein lies the rub”. Plagiarism is the highest form of flattery!

  123. Red Arse says:

    Carlito,

    I was only teasing, by countering with a child’s nursery rhyme.

    I recall your quote from my Shakespeare cribsheet.

    It is from Hamlet. Although many were concerned for him, the acute and cutting observations he makes while supposedly mad implies that he is only pretending.

    When he declared, “I am but mad north-north-west: when the wind is southerly I know a hawk from a handsaw”. He is indicating that he is only “mad” at certain times, and the rest of the time he is quite sane.

    I always thought it sounded like something Spike Milligan would say! Me too, come to that! 🙂

  124. Big Raddy says:

    There are tours from CPH to Helsingør Castle to see where Hamlet lived!

    When I was in Verona for the opera I was shown a balcony where the Italians assure tourists Juliet stood to listen to Romeo.

    And of course there is 221B Baker St.

    Just grown up Father Xmas

    Bit like Dad’s telling their kids they saw Spurs win the League

  125. Carlito11 says:

    BR 😀

  126. Red Arse says:

    Carlito,

    You have introduced a very classical topic to AA. We (the English language) have a lot to thank good old Will for.

    I think Hamlet goes on to say;

    Contemplating suicide or “to shuffle off this mortal coil,” as he puts it, he wonders what happens when you die.
    He declares that no one has returned from that land (“that bourne”) to tell us. Perhaps through death we merely escape the ills we know in this world to find other ills we know not of.
    And so suicide (to purchase quiet with a bodkin) no longer seems a clear answer. “Therin lies the rub”: of the three alternative meanings you have proposed, the first fits the meaning the best, the second is acceptable, the third slightly less so.

    (I always found this play unsettling as a kid. Although I later saw a performance at the Old Vic and thoroughly enjoyed it!) 🙂

  127. Red Arse says:

    BR, 🙂 🙂

    Mind I was very upset that London said, a couple of weeks ago, there was no Father Christmas.

    Luckily I realised he was only joking.

    No Father Christmas indeed! So who fills my stocking on Christmas Eve then? Pshaw!! 🙂

  128. Rasp says:

    Aaah, now you’re talking, the great bard Spike Milligan. My favourite of his is:

    The boy stood on the burning deck …. twit!

  129. Red Arse says:

    Don’t Rasper, do not get me started on Spike. 🙂

    Ohh, to hell with it. 🙂

    On the Ning Nang Nong
    Where the Cows go Bong!
    and the monkeys all say BOO!
    There’s a Nong Nang Ning
    Where the trees go Ping!
    And the tea pots jibber jabber joo.
    On the Nong Ning Nang
    All the mice go Clang
    And you just can’t catch ’em when they do!
    So its Ning Nang Nong
    Cows go Bong!
    Nong Nang Ning
    Trees go ping
    Nong Ning Nang
    The mice go Clang
    What a noisy place to belong
    is the Ning Nang Ning Nang Nong!!

    Ace!

  130. London says:

    Kelsey

    You know that guy in the youtube clip is Sabeel from the other channel. They kicked him off for a while, so he made it to show how much he loved Arsenal….it’s quite moving really.

  131. SharkeySure says:

    Great post Carlito.

    I pretty much only read AA. Once in a blue moon I’ll read Arseblog, but his casual use of the more extreme profanities has always been a turn-off for me, even back when I used to read it daily.

    I also read the ‘another site’ occasionally just for a laugh, cos it really is quite hilarious. Aside from the sheer lunacy of some/most of the commenters, I also love reading ‘the elders’ headline posts. I used to play spot the full stop, although now I’m loving the use of paragraphs in place of sentences and full stops. Lol

    Raddy mentioned their biggest fattest longest living lie, ad I can obnly concur. Last week they finally retracted it without any proper explanation, let alone any apology. I flouted my self imposed ban on commenting there, and made my feelings on the matter known.

  132. Red Arse says:

    Rasp,

    Spike was credited as having the most way out humour, which was evident in his Radio shows, like the Goons.

    Michael Bentine: I just came in and found him lying on the carpet there.
    Peter Sellers: Oh, is he dead?
    Bentine: I think so.
    Sellers: Hadn’t you better make sure?
    Bentine: All right. Just a minute.
    Sound of two gun shots.
    Bentine: He’s definitely dead.

  133. SharkeySure says:

    Aaah Wimpy. They had one in the Elephant & Castle shopping centre when I was a kid.

    Knickerbocker glories.

    Sweet cigarettes. Candy sticks shaped like cigarettes, with a red bit at one end to represent them being lit. And yes, myself and loads of other 70’s kids did use them to mimic smoking. We only bit on the ‘unlit’ end to increase the authenticity.

  134. Carlito11 says:

    Rasp/ RA I always loved Spike’s nonsense was brought up on him and Edward Lear by my old man- 2 favourites:
    1. I eat my peas with honey,
    I’ve done it all my life,
    It makes the peas taste funny
    But it keeps them on the knife!

    2. There are holes in the sky
    Where the rain gets in
    But they’re ever so small
    That’s why the rain is thin

  135. RockyLives says:

    I must go down to the sea again,
    To the lonely sea and the sky.
    I left my vest and pants there,
    I wonder if they’re dry?

    Milligan – genius

  136. Carlito11 says:

    Hi Sharkey! How’s tricks? I did the same as you on that story. Moving on- I blame sweet cigarettes for my enduring nicotine addiction! I was on the sweets for a year before moving on to John Player Specials at the tender age of 12!

  137. RockyLives says:

    When I was teen I read all of Spike’s war memoirs – the humour throughout (and the occasional pathos) is beyond brilliant.

  138. Big Raddy says:

    So many childhood hours spent enjoying Spike’s war memoirs.

    I love that on his gravestone he wanted ” I told you I was sick”. Shame his family refused…

  139. RockyLives says:

    Sharkey
    I don’t want to be a snitch, but there’s a line in Carlito’s excellent post that might cause some frothing from a certain occasional visitor…

  140. Carlito11 says:

    gaol.com has come up with another one getting people furious on twitter claiming Diaby has said he’d like to play for Barca or Real Madrid! Can’t believe a word they say…

  141. RockyLives says:

    Carlito
    I shall filter out gaol.com and caughtoffside.com, along with Arsenal Untruth and Arsenal Outsider…

  142. Red Arse says:

    Some of Spike’s quotations you will be familiar with! 🙂

    a) Chopsticks are one of the reasons the Chinese never invented custard.

    b) His vibrato sounded like he was driving a tractor over a ploughed field with weights tied to his scrotum.

    c) I have the body of an eighteen year old. I keep it in the fridge.

    d) Contraceptives should be used on every conceivable occasion.

    Wow!

  143. goonermichael says:

    a hundred hairy savages
    sitting down to lunch
    gobble gobble glup glup
    munch munch munch

  144. Red Arse says:

    Earlier I was asking what wimpy Bars were. I take it they were not alcoholic establishments then?

    Enlightenment, please.

    By the way, the silly ass who introduced quizzes and Spike Milligoon to this venerable site should be de-bagged! 🙂

  145. goonermichael says:

    maybe it was a thousand. Age does that to you 🙂

  146. Red Arse says:

    Carlito,

    I saw that article, this afternoon, about Diaby having a “dream” of playing for Real or Barca.

    It may not be true, but my goodness is he taking a real bashing from many fans.

    It proves your point about not letting the truth spoil a good story. If it is on a blog it must be true. Strewth!

  147. dandan says:

    Wimpy Bars were a chain/Franchise of Restaurant/cafes that sold the first standard Burgers seen in this country.
    They got their name from the guy in the popeye the sailerman cartoons, Who was always eating burgers he was as you all know called Wimpy

  148. Irishgunner says:

    Evening all.

    I’ve pretty much given up on Newsnow – I think it was the main source of my ire because the story that annoyed me, I’d see reprinted a thousand times….

  149. Carlito11 says:

    Rocky- arsenal untruth- as in untold? I’ve seen it a few times and quite like it- especially their ref watch series but also some of the historical stuff. What don’t I know?

  150. Red Arse says:

    Thanks Dandan,

    Do they still operate? My mum used to say to me there are none so blind as those who do not look. Or something like that. 🙂

    I did not know either that Wimpey was a character in Popeye. The only names that spring to mind are Olive Oil and Bluto (?). I have never really watched those cartoons tho’. Anyway, thanks again. 🙂

  151. RockyLives says:

    Carlito
    I was actually thinking of Arsenal Truth, but given that it’s in the mission statement of this site to not slag off other blogs, I’m not going to mention them.

  152. Carlito11 says:

    Mention who? Never heard a word! 😉

  153. SharkeySure says:

    “Bit like Dad’s telling their kids they saw Spurs win the League”

    Respectfully Mr Radders, that’s got to be grandads hasn’t it!!

  154. London says:

    As lacking in credible as sites like Goal and Caughtofside are I think they may have hit on something when they suggest that Diaby might not be adverse to playing for Barcelona or Real sooner rather than later. I mean where in our team is he going to play next season? Wilshere is not going to be happy on the bench and I am sure the same applies to Ramsey; so, if those two are expecting to play where is Wenger going to shoe horn in Diaby? There is much said about Cesc not being happy playing in a league in which he has his ankles raked every weekend and often used as an excuse to suggest that he will leave sooner rather than later, I don’t believe this for a minute as he looks more commited than ever but when we look at Diaby’s behaviour on Saturday there might be something to be said for him being fed up in the EPL.

  155. RockyLives says:

    The Diaby story (about wanting to play for Madrid or Barca) sounds exactly like one of those cases where a Spanish interviewer has asked if he would ever like to play in Spain with RM or Barcelona, and Diaby did the classic polite response of ‘later in my career maybe it would be great, they play great football’ etc.
    Now some Arsenal sites are talking about betrayal. I swear some of these bloggers are still in junior school.

  156. London says:

    Hi Rocky

    There is not doubt in my mind that the Diaby story is an absolute fabrication.

  157. Frothing Inarticulate Loon says:

    Rocky 5.46. Don’t get me started, my life’s hard enough as it is !!

    Medication, group therapy sessions, ghost writing articles for the ‘other site’, self harming after every misplaced pass from an Arsenal player. Its tough mate.

    Off for a lie down. Nite

  158. Carlito11 says:

    I’ve just seen another 3 blogs I had never heard of before today! So many writers and fans with opinions yet the stadium can be so quiet! Are arsenal fans even mote contradictory than the average human being?

  159. RockyLives says:

    Nite FIL
    Keep taking ’em.

  160. Carlito11 says:

    FIL!

  161. RockyLives says:

    Carlito
    I would quite like (at some point) to do a post that sort-of reviews (in an amusing way) the Arsenal blogosphere, with a cut-out-and-keep guide to which blogs you should read if you’re a pessimist/optimist/angry/literate/yoof/nostalgic etc etc.

    But, as I say, it may be seen to be against the spirit of AA.

  162. London says:

    We concentrate more on the beautiful football served up at the Emirates, teams like Newcastle get served shite most of the time, so what do they do? They sing and sing and then sing some more.

  163. London says:

    On an international week I would imaging they would bite your hand off for it.

  164. RockyLives says:

    Interesting theory London:
    more Wengerball = less singing
    more shite = more singing

    Given that the noisiest fans often support the worst footballing teams, you may have a point.

  165. London says:

    more Wengerball = less singing
    more shite = more singing

    Brilliant in its simplicity

  166. London says:

    All those clubs that sing their hearts out know that they have to find a diversion from the shite being played in front of them.

    Sing when were winning the opposition chant at us, do they know how many leads we have given up after seemingly being comfortably ahead? It used to be two nil when we could relax, then it was four, now goodness knows how many we will have to be ahead to feel relaxed enough to sing.

  167. SharkeySure says:

    Carlito – I can’t remember if it was Smith14 who made the point yesterday, but some blogs take a stance against say Wenger, and are astonished to hear 60k fans singing his name every week. They dismiss them as 60k idiots or 60k sheep, thats how much they believe their own propaganda and BS.

    I like to think that I’ve had ‘a look behind the curtain’ and can see those types for who they really are. Think Wizard of Oz if I’ve lost you.

  168. SharkeySure says:

    I think it can work Rocky, you just have to keep it balanced and fair. On second thoughts that might be really difficult.

    I’d struggle to write anything balanced about some of the completely unbalanced (and twisted!!) sites that I’ve stumbled across.

    So best of luck with that !

  169. London says:

    It always makes me feel really good when I hear the Arsenal away support singing: There’s only one Arsene Wenger, it reminds me that the nonsense spouted out in some parts of the internet is not getting past the sheep who they preach to.

  170. SharkeySure says:

    Kelsey, that video youposted of sabeel (lol London) was as funny as it gets. My 10, 7 and 3 yr olds were in here watching and begged me to replay it. I couldn’t watch it a 2nd time, it was excruciating.

    I loved the fact that his trophy had blue ribbons on it, those swimming shorts instead of Arsenal ones, and best of all, the home made cardboard scarf. What a numpty.

    Fair dos for his love of The Arse though.

    Ps. In that video he’s sober !!!!!!

  171. SharkeySure says:

    London, ain’t that just the biggest irony !!

    The idea that to believe in and trust a man who has led us to so many highs over the last 13-14 years is to be a sheep. Instead we should believe the daily shite spewing forth from certtain quarters makes you a realist.

    If Jim Jones were still alive today he’d be blogging from Guyana, offering live links and free membership, thats for sure.

  172. SharkeySure says:

    Earlier someone talked about ‘passing other AA’ers in the street. From what I can remember from my one meeting with Peaches, Rasp and Chary, I’m convinced that Rasp works in the same building as me !!

    Nite all

  173. gnarleygeorge9 says:

    Being 0-4 up then drawing 4-4 does not carry the stigma of bludging off the taxpayers to get a stadium. Tottenham Hotspurs & West Ham are pathetic. They must carry this shame of living off the hand outs of the taxpayers for eternity. I 4 one will never let them forget how much of a bunch of parasites they are. NEVER!!!!!

  174. gnarleygeorge9 says:

    Tottenham Handouts and/or West Handouts. Both total jokes 😆

  175. RockyLives says:

    gnarley 🙂

  176. Gooner in Exile says:

    These Arsenal sites screaming betrayal, are they the same one blaming him for Saturdays draw and hoping AW never picks him again?

  177. mickydidit89 says:

    Geoff Strong says:
    February 10, 2011 at 2:13 pm
    An AA meeting, do we all stand up one at a time and say…

    “I am an Arsenal fan”

    🙂 🙂

  178. charybdis1966 says:

    MDi89 – the older ones amongst us can say “I’m an Arsenal fan and I still get my weekends ruined if we lose a game but I am old enough to know better”
    Are you going to the game tomorrow ?

  179. chary – that is the truest thing

    “I’m an Arsenal fan and I still get my weekends ruined if we lose a game but I am old enough to know better”

  180. charybdis1966 says:

    I’m worse than my sons when we lose – how sad is that Peachy ?

  181. Big Raddy says:

    I realised long ago that I am Powerless over Arsenal ( AA Step One 😀 )

    and It takes on average 48 hours to regain equilibrium after an Arsenal setback

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