World Cup Exit

3rd July 2006

‘Twenty million England flags for sale. Hardly used’ ran an advert in the newspaper. ‘Fifty million bottles of celebratory champagne, now surplus to requirements, going cheap, ran another. ‘Twenty million dogs kicked’ said a headline. ‘Baden-Baden shopkeepers in tears as England Wags leave for home’ shouted another. These were some of the thoughts running through my head as The Trouble and I watched the England v Portugal match limp towards a penalty shoot out and another inevitable cave-in by our boys in whatever colour David Beckham had decided we’re playing in for this match. Well the football was never going to fully occupy my mind, was it?

“Why do they never go to the lavatory?” said The Trouble, out of the blue.

Obviously I wasn’t the only one who had found the football hadn’t been of sufficient quality to keep my mind from wandering off to more interesting subjects. I thought about it for a moment. “Well it’s a question of the toilets,” I finally said, the voice of authority.

“The toilets?”  This with a puzzled look.

 “Yes. As is the case with most public toilets nowadays you have to pay to get in at football ground toilets. And where would the players keep their money?”

The Trouble mulled this over for a moment or two, then said: “Perhaps they could carry one of those man handbags that are becoming popular.” 

“Of course they could my sweet. They could put them down on the pitch and play round them like women dance round their handbags at discos. Even better, they’ve no need to bother with man handbags at all, they can borrow one of their wives and girlfriends many handbags and carry those, they play like a load of women anyway so they might as well.”

“Women would play better than they’ve been doing, said The Trouble.”

I couldn’t argue with this, and didn’t.