Goalie got creamed by a betting company

I make reference to this story published today on Sky News. The keeper in question has since resigned his post and to many this was just another random spot of bad luck.

Couple of points I want to make.

First off kudos to the ex-keeper who worked part time as a goal keeper for a Championship team despite being 150kg and having a soft spot for pies. I think it’s refreshing that in this day and age you can still have this relaxed approach instead of all the fuss and bother of the premier league.

Secondly, this team having a game with Arsenal seems to have resulted in this goalie getting a surge of bad press, and ultimately getting the boot. Right there it just goes to show the society we live in; as soon as this team got a bit of premier league media exposure, someone got into trouble.

Let’s look at the case. All the fuss was caused because this goalie apparently knew the odds on him eating a pie at some point during the match, and bet anyway. The ones getting hot under the collar are obviously saying he broke betting rules. I get that. Footballers shouldn’t bet on football. Makes sense right?

In this case though, football had nothing to do with it; the guy ate a pie during the match.

The more I thought about it, the more I started wondering how bookies are allowed to take bets on absolutely anything, even someone famous for eating pies wolfing one down during a match. Assuming that it is near impossible to not know such bets have been taken, what position does that put our goalie in? Eating a pie is a fully conscious action; it’s not something that has variables like scoring.

But wait, bets are taken for getting carded too, and that can be seen to be a conscious action right?. True, agreed, but getting carded is an illegal move in the game so that is different. 

Bottom line is, by taking such bets, wasn’t the bookie putting this goalie in harms way itself? If someone took odds that you would cross the street tomorrow on the way to work; the same street you’re known for crossing, wouldn’t that put you in a position where whatever you do will be interpreted badly? Regardless of having placed a bet yourself.

I think this bookie had no business taking such bets. I think that by doing so they’ve put this goalie in an unnecessary bit of hassle that cost him his post, and that is very sad. I honestly hope the gaming commision shares my view.


Parking Bullies

Picture a nice Sunday afternoon. You’re heading to a seaside lounge for cocktails. It’s a busy area; finding parking is hard, then you spot a car exiting a space. You stop to let the car reverse out with the ultimate intention of taking the space. That’s when it happens. The car behind you starts showering you with a series of abusive honks. You pull over to one side to allow the offender to pass, only to discover he’s now busy taking your spot. You try to reverse back into you rightful spot, but its too late. You’re now not only being honked at, but verbal abuse is coming at you too as he verbally implies you’re taking HIS spot. In the end, you make a choice; its either get out of the car and see how far it escalates, or walk away.

Has this ever happened to you? I came out of the above incident visibly bothered, having walked away from an abusive situation, pulse racing and with a general feeling that I needed to punch something or I would explode. My appetite for drinks with friends was gone, and after spending the next 15 mins circling around I was still fuming.

It dawned on me that bullying doesn’t stop when you’re a kid. Some adults remain bullies well into their old age, always spoiling for a fight. 

Society teaches you to be the bigger man and walk away. What it doesn’t teach you is how to deal with the left over rage that comes from suppressing a primal instinct to lash out at an agressor. Instinct and reason are at loggerheads for a couple of seconds. Your rational side knows escalation will lead to further complication, especially in a society that punishes aggression indiscriminately of justification, but your primal side just wants to give that smug piece of garbage the beat down he’s probably deserved all his life.

While I may have been the bigger man for walking away, I could not shake the look of the guy’s smug face as he bragged about it to his friends while I circled around and watched them walk across the promenade. 

Why am I writing this? For one thing; while some bullies grow into reasonable people, some stay bullies for life. Being a believer in Karma I believe they eventually get what they deserve. Secondly, it is fascinating how much of a restricted society we live in that an abuser is more confident because the law will protect against someone retaliating physically. I wonder where all this pent up frustration the everyday Joe experiences goes to. 

I’m interested in seeing how others handle such situations. I’m pretty sure certain characters have a natural knack with it.

The lounge starts to take shape

Picture a room where the day’s trivial thoughts fall away. A lounge with comfortable sofas, low tables and good company. The feeling is reminiscent of the drawing rooms of old, where evenings were spent in stimulating conversation and the odd bout of harmless mischief.

This is the image I have in mind as I start putting together this blog. I do not yet know what will come of it or where it will lead, but I hope it will be an interesting place with a mix of humor, opinion and a touch of fun. The air is optimistic and somewhat festive, as if I’m buying a round of drinks.

And so this blog is born, looking forward to good posts and lively exchange. I believe on such occasions a toast is warranted, and while we’re here, why not make it a double..