It was twenty years ago today…

Let’s get one thing clear from the start. I detest football. It is, in my eyes, a game played by a professional class, the top players of which, earn more money *in a week* than *double* the national average *annual* salary. This is plainly immoral. Football is also perverse in as much as the folk who, by and large, *earn* the average national *annual* salary put their arses on the seats every weekend to perpetuate the immorality. Someone around here is plainly bonkers. However this, if you haven’t guessed from the heading, is not a rant about football…

I can remember where I was when the Hillsborough disaster occurred. I was watching it on the television. My housemate of the time, a staunch Nottingham Forest supporter, had commandeered the television and I had college work to do. So I sat and watched the pre-match build-up, intending to watch the entire game. Not because I’m a hypocrite but because even watching a game I detest is better than struggling through my revision on International Economics.

It was obvious from quite an early stage that something was wrong. The television producer periodically panned across the crowds from the talking heads in the studio and as the camera traversed the ground one could see the pattern of the crowds was wrong.

And when people began scaling the inhumanly tall fencing to escape on to the pitch from the crush of the terraces, and briefly, the television cameras were allowed to play over the gathering disaster from closer range, we knew there would be serious casualties and we were silent as we sat and watched.

Predictably the television commentary sought to lay the blame for the disturbance at the feet of a hitherto unknown troublesome element in the crowd.

Little did the talking head know that the disaster had been caused and was exacerbated by the rank ineptitude of the South Yorkshire Police Force. And how far have we not come in twenty years, that the conduct and professional behaviour of this country’s police forces continues to fail to meet public expectations?

No matter how one feels about football, ninety six people should not die whilst trying to watch their football team play.

At 15.06 this afternoon I shall be still and silent again.

Even though I detest the game.

Keeping an eye out for Noah

You know. I’m not religious or anything but that rain out there? I know it’s the tail end of an Atlantic storm but if it keeps on coming in like this we’ll all be looking for very big boats!

Hey, how are you? How’s your Saturday going?

Mine’s OK.

I’ve recorded two podcasts (one for today, one for the weekend we move house) and performed software and operating system surgery on my old laptop.

And now I’m feeling a little ‘penned in’.

I’d like to go out, but riding is out of the question. In fact – right now – even dodging the end-of-the-world downpour is out of the question.

I need to buy some leather dressing; I could pick some up then go to the yard and strip, clean and oil both saddles and the bridle.

But the thought of even setting foot in to that downpour? Ugh!

And there’s absolutely nothing on the television.

Bum.

What should I do?

I mean I want to do something and I want to do something productive, that needs doing. I need to go to the yard to get my cordless drill out of the lorry. It needs recharging and I only found out where the charger is the other day.

But I have done stuff, apart from the podcasting thing. I took my front door key to the new house off the keyring and added it to my keyring.

And… AND… and I did that without breaking any limbs, windows or fingernails. I rock.

Oooh! It’s stopping with the downpouring!

Gotta go!

B.