Courtesy of The Mamas and The Papas, except before pop experts correct me apparently it is ba-da ba-da. Oh well, I always sing la la to songs as I never listen to words.
But not just any Monday because today is also Birthday, Birthday. Glorious blaze of self-promotion there.
Every year it strikes me as bizarre to get greetings from people I’ve never met over the internet, and nothing from people I do know.
So thanks to the ones who have already sent good wishes to me (and my partner, whose birthday was yesterday), very much appreciated. In the FaceBook days, one would get amazing greetings from all over the world, which may seem pretty meaningless but it still took time for people to notice and type out a message. Despite our lack of presence, I thought I had better check on Partner’s page yesterday – and – more greetings from kind-hearted souls.
Not being friend, family or party orientated – what do two mid 50s do on their birthdays?
Take the dog for a walk up the side of the Alameda gardens past the huge olive trees.
Thought I better add that one for Pippafans as an interim pic until I post on his blog.
We watched a film, kindly lent to us by one of Partner’s workmates.
It was brilliant. I am not into any sort of violence, drugs, or gangland culture but this was one good film. It made Reservoir Dogs look soft.
One of the great things about good British films is that they are incredibly minimalist – which makes them all the harder hitting.
This was very hard hitting. Literally.
Plot: Well, it’s based on Carlton Leach who I’d not heard of, but I had heard of football violence.
There can’t be anyone who lived in the UK in the late 70s and 80s who wasn’t aware of football violence. And this was every week, not just the odd international.
I went to a local derby between Everton and Liverpool in the late 70s and there was nothing. Not that I could see the match very well with my poor eyesight and no contact lenses back then but still, it was a good event with no violence. Or maybe we didn’t see it.
Every weekend I would travel home from university and on the return journey I always met a group of Man Utd supporters – they were lovely. I was pretty wary at first, and this was in the days of closed compartments, but we just chatted away until they got out at St Helens. I became quite sad when there was an away match and there were no nice lads to brighten the journey. Who knows if they were thugs? I don’t.
Early 80s, I went to see Leeds United v Newcastle. Now this was the stuff violence was made of. There was a fair amount of antagonism between the supporters of the two teams anyway, and they didn’t keep it off pitch either.
Kevin Keegan, playing for Newcastle, was pelted first with tiny items, and then with cans. I think they stopped the game at one point. It was also the period when ‘hooligans’ used to chuck ball bearings under horses’ feet rendering mounted police totally useless, which, sadly we saw when we left the ground at the end of the match.
We beat a hasty retreat, especially when we noticed the fires that had been started on the grass area around the outside of Elland Road (Leeds Utd home ground). In fact it even merits a mention on Wiki – match of October 1982. Always good to attend historic events I find.
Back to the film. This was based on membership of the West Ham football firm (Inter City Firm).
I always thought Millwall were the hardest toughest ones. Either way, all the supporters of London clubs were ‘ard as nails – Chelsea, Arsenal, Millwall, West Ham – do hope I haven’t missed any out there as I would hate them to target my blog.
But looking at Wiki again, apparently the Leeds United Service Crew has a reputation for being the most notorious hooligan firm in the history of English football. Phew! That’s good, wouldn’t want to be outdone by all those London clubs.
The first instance of football violence is unknown, but the phenomenon can be traced back to the 14th century England.
The first recorded instances of football hooliganism in the modern game allegedly occurred during the 1880s in England, a period when gangs of supporters would intimidate neighbourhoods, in addition to attacking referees, opposing supporters and players. In 1885, after Preston North End beat Aston Villa 5-0 in a friendly match, both teams were pelted with stones, attacked with sticks, punched, kicked and spat at. One Preston player was beaten so severely that he lost consciousness and press reports at the time described the fans as “howling roughs”.
It’s so good to be a world leader at something isn’t it? Well, in the past anyway.
In the film, Mr Leach moves from bashing the shit out of people at football matches, to bouncing (bashing the shit out of more people) to the drugs industry, crime protection (uh? contradiction in terms) to involvement with torture and murder, I think, as I did get a bit lost with the amount of rather sad bodies that appeared in this film and who was doing what to who. I’m not very good on keeping up with films. Women (blonde of course) take their clothes off, are ‘gagging for it’, and wives/partners get slapped around.
The film ends with the 1995 Rettendon Murders which I only vaguely remember. (Rettendon is in Essex – which was probably why I couldn’t understand the accents half the time).
Good points about the film? There were lots of Land Rovers in it. British films should always have Land Rovers in and this did well, spotted – 1) Range Rover (the murder vehicle), 2) Defender (driver discovered the bodies in the RR), and 3) a Series earlier.
What else? Realistic (sadly). Succinct. Gripping – ie I didn’t fall asleep. Well filmed.
Directed by Julian Gilbey and running time is 114 minutes.
It’s based on the book by Carlton Leach called Muscle which he wrote in 2003. Should a former crim receive money from a book and film rights? Who is to say? I’m not arguing with him. Either way, a great film despite my criticism of the subject matter. You don’t have to agree with a film to acknowledge it is good.
Oh and today, well just another manic – birthday – Monday. (courtesy of The Bangles).
Opened up the sandwich and salad bar, read all your lovely blogs, and now have a pile of stuff to do……
Grilled and marinated pimientos, stuffed curried egg, tomato, cucumber, olives, potato salad – capers and onion marinated in red wine vinegar.
ETA a cheerful party song after Phil’s comment: