Nobody likes a bully but special contempt should be kept for the bully’s mate. The snivelling little shithouse who stands behind the bully shaking his fist at you and making snidy comments. At school they were miserable cowards prepared to be regularly humiliated by the bully just so they could avoid being actually bullied. They were to be hated rather than pitied because without them the bully would have had no audience to perform for, less power and consequently could have been beaten. The modern equivalent is Nick Clegg.
When thrashings are administered by the bully the bully’s mate will stick the boot in with extra spite and the bullied at this point should always make the point to think, “when I get you on your own I’m going to f*** you up like a car crash.” After the bully has been expelled or been found hanging from fishing wire in the vicar’s potting shed the bully’s mate will deny all wrong doing and will try to become your mate. At which point this person must be humiliated because they will snipe at you again given the chance.
Those of us under the battered banner of Newcastle United can speak of bullying from experience, having been kicked round the street for years at a time with nobody willing or capable to stick up for us. In the relegation season in particular we were constantly reminded that we were culpable in our own downfall what with our unreasonable expectations and our delusional stupidity.
Flicking round the online newspapers at Sydney airport recently I stumbled across a piece by Guardian journalist Paul Hayward wherein he cobbled a thoughtful piece out of quotes from NUFC chief scout Graham Carr that he had found in The Sunday Sun. Hayward made some interesting points about picking quality French players up that seemed to have a sub-text of knocking Arsene Wenger’s dominance in the field. Compliments for Carr and our recent promising start were fair enough along with nakedly obvious remarks like, “Adversity will strike Alan Pardew’s side at some stage in this season and then we will assess their true calibre.” But the quote that bugged me all the way to Christchurch was: “ In defending their club against “southern” critics some Newcastle fans have acquired quite a persecution complex. They assume all scrutiny is hostile when much of it is directed at mismanagement from above rather than the team or the congregation.” – Say what now?
So now we’re paranoid, are we? Like all that criticism we got was a figment of our own fevered imaginings, was it? And this complex we have developed is because of our feebleminded distrust of southerners? Like I don’t remember Mr Hayward himself on Sky’s Sunday Supplement with his sneering accusative attitude, don’t criticize my persecution complex sir, not when you helped train it to be so battle hardened. And like The Guardian in particular hasn’t been guilty of what some might consider a vendetta against Newcastle United supporters that has verged on the unethical. What are we this week, racist or islamaphobic or is this a week where we don’t know who we are? I’m an entire planet away from my arsenal of press cuttings but haven’t we been “moronic” as well?
Remember when Newcastle fans rioted in the street to protest about the signing of Andy Cole because we didn’t want a black player in the team? No of course you can’t because it never happened – did The Guardian happily publish this as fact within the last 2 years? You bet they did and a pretty good job I didn’t hold my breath waiting for an apology either. If they did apologise I didn’t hear it and I wouldn’t accept it anyway. Sanctimonious shit-rag assumes nobody in Newcastle buys it so they can say what they like because we are all too busy planting whippet seeds in our allotments to read about villas in Tuscany and where to send Jocasta for her Introduction to Patronising Peasants classes.
We are not overly precious and we do not think we or our club are beyond criticism. Our persecution complex is not limited to the southern press because elements of the north eastern press have been guilty over fawning over Saint Niall and everything that happens at The Stadium of Empty Faded Pink Seats as a way of belittling us. Our persecution complex wasn’t built by us, it was built for us and if we object to some half-wit knocking out ill-informed crap about us and our football team every time they have got half a page to fill then it is our duty to throw rotten vegetables at them.
And if Paul Haywood doesn’t like cabbages bouncing off his big forehead he should stay out of our garden.