You have no idea how spoiled you have become in your luxury 21st Century digital playground. Yes you there too busy worrying about your job, house, family and the fact that greedy idiots are bollocksing up the planet. You don’t know you’re born………… well you probably do, you’ve probably got a birth certificate and everything and what do I know about you or your life and what business do I have shouting at you about such things when my only job here is to find a new way of calling sunderland fans inbred goat molesters for your amusement?…… sorry.
And I’ve lost all my momentum now.
Wifey and I picked up a tiny hire car (a Toyota Runt Mouse with a specialist roof rack for our surf boards) in Christchurch and drove it North to Nelson, then Picton, then we got the Interislander ferry to Wellington. (No of course we haven’t got f***ing surfboards). We’ve been to Wellington before and we stayed in a place run by a peculiar retired Scottish murderer and it gave us the creeps and we didn’t like it. We barricaded our bedroom door with our rucksacks and fled before the sun came up. This time our landlord/retired murderer was a Kiwi and all the other guests were either hiding from somebody or terminally bewildered so we changed tactics; barricading our room then sneaking out the back door when nobody was looking. Bloody weird Wellington but they made it the capital so the NZ Parliament is here. It’s like, you know how the mackems didn’t want the North East Regional Assembly to be in Newcastle so they proposed Durham as the North East’s capital? Wellington is what happens when you listen to the fevered mewlings of idiots. A “capital” that everybody knows isn’t really the capital where people can murder poor backpackers and eat their eyes if they don’t barricade their rooms properly (probably).
Auckland is the capital and that is where we are heading, but we are taking our time about it. This is good because it is all too easy to rattle through New Zealand without enjoying all it has to offer. We bought a tent and sleeping bags and have been minding our poor battered budget by cooking our own meals in hostel kitchens. Hostel kitchens are great places to meet interesting folk from all round the world, they are terrible places to cook because all the knives are blunt, and there are no tea spoons, the handle has just fallen off this frying pan and 30 other people are trying to cook on the same stove.
A lot of these places charge for internet coverage by the hour, so you can’t help but think, f*** it I don’t need to check Twitter, emails or nufc.com twice a day and so you get strangely isolated from your own life. And that’s where we are right now, isolated from our own life, granted it’s a nice isolation where the sun shines hot in November, the ocean is a clear blue/green colour and the beer and wine is all delicious. But when your whole life has been marked by football matches and live shows, to be estranged from both for a prolonged period starts to get on your nerves. Rise Against at the O2, Mariachi El Bronx at the Cluny and now brilliant acerbic comedian Doug Stanhope is playing Newcastle as well. Seriously why don’t you all get Rancid to play in my f***ing garden while I’m away as well, just to really piss me off.
In Gisborne we finally cracked and booked into a motel for a couple of days, ostensibly to wash our clothes, ourselves and cook without groups of sunbathing Germans flopping and barking all over the place like bloody sea lions. But the first thing we did was flip the TV on to see if we could catch the Everton game. We already missed the game at Stoke because it kicked off at 9 am Tuesday morning and no pubs were open. We were also both convinced that Newcastle would lose at Stoke and I was preparing a piece on what a disgrace that was; our lack of height and cover in defence leaving us woefully ill equipped to deal with Pulis’ bullyboy tactics and not wanting to risk Hatem Ben Arfa against the detestable likes of Shawcross and Huth being a savage indictment of what Stoke expect to get away with.
We filled the time by doing a Parliament tour and were surprised in the bit where everybody has to introduce themselves to the group by an Aussie voice barking “Have we beaten Stoke yet?” when Wifey and I said we were from Newcastle. As the tour proceeded along corridors we jabbered happily with Simon from Melbourne who has been a nufc fan for 25 years. Yes yes the building is balanced on big rubber springs to combat earthquakes and the carpet is the same design as Parliament in London but why the hell did Simon think we were going to win at Stoke?
I switched my phone back on at the end of the tour and the three of us waited for news from the Potteries. This took longer than we expected because Tim, in charge of sending the score, milked his position with regular updates of all noteworthy incidents. Essentially we relived the highlights until Simon let out a shout that probably disturbed the Minister for Fisheries when the 3-1 final score was announced. Since then we have singularly failed to catch any of the goals until this morning we saw a Premiership Preview show in the Motel. It was like watching Saint and Greavsie in the 80s during that awful period where ITV had exclusive rights to show football in the UK and didn’t know what to do with them. Where you spent half an hour every Saturday hoping for the merest glimpse of a black and white shirt and were invariably disappointed. All we saw this morning was Ba thump in the penalty from a camera shot that didn’t show the ball. Perhaps the game is best left to my imagination where Newcastle, resplendent in black, are majestic, where Ba’s goals are things of power and beauty and where the hateful Pulis rings his hands and explodes with frustration as his team of thugs and monsters is dismantled by the tactical genius of Pardew and his plucky handsome charges.
Our motel has Sky Sports (NZ) 1 and 2. The Everton game is on 3. I don’t know why that bothers me so much because I can never remember games against Everton. For some reason Everton matches slip my mind entirely within a fortnight of the final whistle no matter who gets sent off or if we score 6 or lose to a scabby deflection. (I do recall bits of a 1-1 we watched in New York but that was balanced out by having no recollection of the next ten hours thanks to the NYC Mags).
Sky Sports in New Zealand is run by a malicious mackem (probably) so the only repeat showing is 5am on Thursday morning. So you can see Match of the Day and I can’t and I’m not very happy about it. Which is why I was all snippy at the start. I genuinely hope you enjoy it.