Tuesday, 18 July 2017


Hard to know how Roger Rolex 

would have fared against a fit Rafa Nadal, Andy Mutant or Novak Jabberwock, 
they might have given him a game, a bit of a contest, one to justify the ultimately rather shame-faced euphoria surrounding his eighth Wimbledon victory.  

This really was a poor game, one which made Federer look considerably more formidable than he is.  There is no question about Federer's abilities or his ancien regime sportsmanship; his talent, his application and his grace are  now legendary and I wish more were like him.  
If, as is said, he is worth a billion dollars - one hundred millions in prize money and ten times that in sponsorship, well, better him than the repulsive  John McSneer

the oldest baby in the world
 or the cock-waving Boris Becker; 

if there is anyone in modern sport who deserves these astronomical rewards it is Roger Federer,  

an athlete and an entertainer without equal; 
even so, Sunday's was a fucking awful Wimbledon final.

I don't think I had noticed Cilic before but then I watch very little tennis these days, especially since the rise of Andy Mutant, his creepy MummyDarling  and his ugly, neanderthal petulance but it should be safe to assume that anyone, familiar or not,  who reaches the Wimbledon Men's Singles Final is a player of some capability, not just in serve-and-volleying but in self-control;
 Cilic, though,  was a tosser who should have been weeded-out by the tournament itself. 
 Outplayed  by Federer in almost every game the Croatian, instead of counting his blessings at being in the Final, being beaten by the greatest player ever and being about to receive a cheque for over a million pounds cried like a baby,


 he cried for his inadequacy,


 he cried for his doctor, 


 for his sore foot;  

he strung-out two injury breaks quite shamelessly and even after all that hysterical hustling lacked the grace to congratulate the victor, it was  a regrettably familiar display of  inept, fuckwit, self-obsessed  celebrity bitching about its own thwarted ambition; 
 he should've been booed-off but instead we sat - well, I didn't - sat enthralled by his repulsive, whining  self-pity, with the permanent adolescent, Bozo Becker, wittering-on like an Agony Aunt about Centre Court being the loneliest place in the world,  

Look, it's like I alvays say,
 zis iss real life und death stuff at Cenner Cawt,
 ve are all true gladiators out zare,
 fighting for our life.

as though even Wimbledon, like everything else, had encamped itself in the Big Brother House.

It seemed that between every point the PBC's Wimbledon director distractingly chose to show us some grimy, oiled-up nobody - Oh, fuck me, look viewers, isn't this wonderful, so-and-so's come here to be seen at Wimbledon. What? Tennis? No, I shouldn't think he understands it at all, but being seen, that's what it's all about, there is no business like showbusiness, and it's what we're bringing you,  the tennis simply isn't enough, so we're bringing you pictures of absolutely everybody who's nobody.
 Look! Look!   
Here's Ruritanian Prince Gormless and his doxy 

Yah, free seats, Yah, 
free everything.
OK, Yah, but  y'know, I dowannit;
it's more about duty,
like my bro' says, 
all about duty,
having all this free stuff.

And here we can spot ghastly, overdressed  imbecile wannabe, 
Dave Simpers, a man who gas done so very, very much for himself, I mean, you only have to think of all hist tattooss, the stuipid inky cunt, and his beards and hairstyles, this is the stuff of sporting greatness
'Ey, Willie, Ya gorra Knighthood for me yet?
Only I do deserve one, 
fer all the fings worravdone,
the cloves, an' the cosmetics an' everyfing.
 Patient and punctilious in his seemingly endless round of post-match celebrity greeting 
it was telling that Roger Federer spent the absolute minimum amount of time with the Ruritanian parasites, hugging Princess Coke briefly and swiftly shaking hands with the grinning Prince Gormless, 
the oaf who would be king. 

 Even in snubbing the worthless,
 Federer was a lesson in grace and style.

A ruined final, a worthless opponent, a cliche-drenched commentariat, a gang of slimeballs basking in his moment  and yet,  by his presence, redeeming the whole grisly crew, he carries it all off like a Saint walking among sinners.
Worth every penny, Roger Federer.


Doug Shoulders said...

Used to watch it Mr Ishmael. The tennis. It got boring with it after Mcsneer quit and there was only room in the game for the big servers that trailed Navratilova.
Federer is interesting in as much as his conduct on and off court does not betoken the supreme champion that he is.
My own experience and later observation of sporting greats has led me to posit that you can only become a champion at your sport with programming (Plus food and shelter). Some exceptions such as Federer exist but they are few. Not for him will be the train wreck that follows when the programming malfunctions.
Mrs Murray and her son might not be to everyone’s favourite, but she knew what needed to be done to make a champion and applied herself and her son to the task.

Alphons said...

Tennis.......What is tennis?????

inmate said...

The last gentleman tennis chap, before Roger Rolex, is sat behind Prince and Princess Parasite. Rod Laver received a £10 token for winning Wimbledon; redeemed it for a nice shirt, couldn't cash it or the taxman would've wanted his share.

Mike said...

Lost interest in tennis (and in so much else) at the beginning of the William sisters era.

I may be repeating myself, but several years ago on Channel 7 here, they showed a closeup of Serena as they changed ends, and she bent over to pick up a towel; half an acre of white knicker. At that moment a caption travelled across the bottom of the picture: 'now available in wide-screen'.

Our 'Aussie' representatives (actually plastic Aussies) have hardly endeared themselves either.

Tennis is just another mirror on the age we live in, sadly. The era of Laver, and even Borg, has long passed.

call me ishmael said...

Looks like he's still wearing the nice shirt but sad, in a way, mr inmate, to see him encased in his long-agos. I hope that the PBC and Wimbledon pay for his fares and exes and a drink or two.

Marty Navratilova still haunts the world's TeeVee studios, mr doug, telling people that she's gay, as though that's the important thing, well, not "as though," it obviously is, to her, the most important thing, just not to me.

The Murray mutation is surely proof that the programming - which undeniably exists - only produces champions, creatures attractive only to other mutations, and not great, entertaining players. I looked at Cilic's gang of mates and motivators and they looked as though they belonged in G-Wing of Winson Green Prison; old Mother Murray gives me the heebie-jeebies and Ivan Lendl looks like he's fresh from train-unloading duty at Auschwitz; Roger Federer and his family, on the other hand, look like normal rich people.

You know how, m, alphons, at the modern auction, when a masterpiece sells for millions, the people in the sale room go nuts, applauding not the masterpiece but the money, well, tennis is like that, people don't care how well or entertainingly someone plays, all they care about is his focus, his determination, his programming; it is fucking awful and that's why Roger Federer is a treasure, in and outside of the game he plays.

Alphons said...

It is at times like these that we should just start thinking and ask ourselves why do we put so much importance on who has won what, and why we should want to see them do it.
They (whoever they are) try and partially succeed in brain washing the country's idiots into thinking that the world will end if they do not turn out and pay out thousands of pounds to see "sportsmen" of all persuasions make fools of themselves just to make money for the sponsers and their ilk.
The Cycle Tour of Yorkshire is a prime example of the organisers/sponsers being the beneficiariesy. The various councils could not get enough. The county is now overwhelmed with idiots out on expensive cycles making fools of themselves and presenting everpresent opportunities for serious road accidents as they try to imitate the proffessional clowns.

mongoose said...

Compare and contrast, as Mr Fewtrell used to require of us, the above and the tears after today's Womens World Cup Semi-Final. 22 women playing a game that I recognise. I can still bowl at 71mph, just about, and with a tail wind. They were happy and sad at the end of a damn tight game that could have gone either way but for many but-fors. And yet they all behaved impeccably. The Tommies managed to squeak a win, despite Brexit, and now go on to Sunday's Final at lords, for which the lad and I have tickets btw. Hurrah.

I think it is that some games are one-v-one beastly selfish adventures and only the beastly and the selfish can be good enough to the degree required to prevail. I have only closely known cricketers, and swimmers and a few rowers way back when, and almost to a man - and woman - these sports are populated by decent and decently behaved people. The really, really good swimmers, it is true, are odd but they are so focused on fractions of a second that they are a little bonkers but it is a kindly, technical almost introspection that drives it all.

Federer, of course, is Swiss and cannot behave like a bastard because it has been bred out of them.

tdg said...

I suppose it is one of very few games where you can win almost twice as many individual points as your opponent and still lose. This must amplify the psychological element, though it does not explain why players deal with it so egocentrically. I would not be thinking about my mind but about fucking up my opponent's.

call me ishmael said...

It was always the sheer, urgent balleticism coupled with a geometrist's eye which delighted me about tennis and I think that the irony of mr tdg's observaion was well. understood and appreciated - the winner needs the loser as the writer needs the reader; as a spectacle it is the closely-run rally which delights, not the light-speed serve; it is a co-operative competititon which produces the memorable game.

It is a long time since McSneer and the Williamses degraded professional tennis with grunts and tantrums and now when I watch it at all it is from a cynical distance, expecting the worst from players and commentariat alike; it is a dreadful, travelling circus of nightmare, in which Federer's playing and conduct are actually a freakish anachronism.

Mike said...

When I did my Grand Tour of Europe a couple of years ago, the one country that impressed me was Croatia. The people are all 7ft tall, even the women, and look fit and fierce. And I had the best seafood risotto in Split I've ever had.

They are very patriotic: a driver in Dubrovnik on the way to Montenegro told me about the battle of Dubrovnik in the war against the Serbs. The town is commanded from the Napoleon era fort on the heights overlooking the town. He was in the fort about to be overrun by the Serbs when they called down mortar fire on their position. Almost certain death, but it saved the town. You can see the bast marks and shell marks on the hill top, and the museum in the fort is well worth a visit.

In tennis, the Croats have performed well, so its a shock to read (I didn't see it) that Cilic was crying. Can't be blisters as I expect this to be a given at that stage. Maybe he needs to take a ride with my driver?

call me ishmael said...

"It is at times like these that we should just start thinking and ask ourselves why do we put so much importance on who has won what, and why we should want to see them do it."

It is just Cruelty TeeVee, m alphons, the Big Brother House with Sweat and under its malign influence I wonder if children can ever again play a sports game for its own sake; you're fired, you are the weakest link, you are evicted; only two cooks can go forward so you will be going home, all is humiliation-as-entertainment, no reason for sport to be any different.

As you say, opportunities for advertising and the marketing of product are the reasons behind the cycling madness, although the people controlling it convince us that it is all about the nation's health, a charity in effect, an aspect of the big Society, Sky Cycling. They will be commodifying and monetising dog-walking if we are not careful.

call me ishmael said...

I never engage with cricket, mr mongoose, save the one time, when, stoned out of my mind, I listened to some old codgers on the BBC radio, filling-in time, talking about a particularly bumpy section of grass at Headingley - a coupla square metres - how it made the ball bounce erratically, qrong-footing the fielder, and how it was made better or worse by an overnight shower, how a whole game could turn on a team's understanding of lawn-mowing and in that affectionate, bumbling grasp of minutae I understood what cricket was all about, Enjoy the game.

call me ishmael said...

He was definitely sobbing, mr mike, blaming his foot. Now, I know that all injury is not visible but his foot looked fine epidermally and he could flex it easily and a minute or two later was running around the court on it. I do believe that it was merely a ruse, that he was trying to throw Federer off his stride, calling down on
his head the Mortars of Interruption, te Howitzers of Distraction. I think, in other words, that he's a cunt.

I owned a Yugo, once, but that's the extent of my involvement with that region; I liked it and unlike Cilic it didn't keep breaking-down.

Doug Shoulders said...

We’re in the era of the clenched fist snarl. It’s the caption for sporting heroes Kids are probably doing this in the school playground…if they have sports at school these days.
I often thought the reason Henman couldn’t win anything was because he didn’t celebrate a point by sneering over the net at his opponent.
Playing sport in a gentlemanly way won’t get one the silver.

mongoose said...

I am sure that I posted this pic earlier as an enticement towards the joys of Orkney Cricket Club but it seems to have not come through. Anyway, you know it makes sense:

Flannelled fools

call me ishmael said...

I did read of tears in the playground, mr doug, when the mangy Maxwell Tart, Robinson, was at the height of her You Are The Weakest Link, Goodbye infamy, the playground was always a Killing Ground, now it is victualled and munitioned by worthless Celebrity. Anne Robinson, for fuck's sake. I hope her arse falls out and she trips over her intestines.

call me ishmael said...

That won't load, mr mongoose but I remember, on arriving here, being weirdly delighted by people playing golf in a windy, Midsummer midnight.

I had a chill moment of embarrassment, last night, when I thought that you might've been referring to the ladies' football tournament, and then I thought, No, not mr mongoose, not football.

mongoose said...

Was nowt. just a pic of some poor lads playing cricket in what looked like midwinter but was Orkney Cricket Club.

Footie is just horrible. A tax on the daft. One had hoped that women - all 3 billion of them - were too wise to get involved. That you could doubt me - even for a second - is more wounding than I can bear to properly think about. Anyway. Lord's will be full on Sunday for the women's final. A frst, I reckon. Win the toss and bat is usually the maxim but with rain about it might become a bit of a lottery. The women not being strong enough to muscle a short rain-reduced chase, I would stick with batting first. You see? It is not all pigeons and double-decker buses going by.

mongoose said...

And it came to pass as above. Just enough runs for England and just not enough nous and mental muscle from the Indians. If you've played any sort of cricket, you understand what just happened. A fantastic match though.

Of course, I wasn't there - just watched the telly highlights - was fielding mongosling senior at an A&E in the West Country. All well but children can be mighty irritating and inconvenient sometimes.

i came, i saw, i say cool man...jus han mi da bumbaclart cash bwoy said...

big respect to the big man bolt

what a very great sportsman in defeat

in fact i now respect him even more for losing than i did before when he was winning

after it became apparent that the big bolt was not charging - but the pratload of bbc punditry were still blathering away about him going out victorious into retirement - i just said to my mum how i would laugh my fucking nuts off for a week if ban-boy bogeyman jus gatlin won the final...

and so on the night i was rooting for gatlin the gremlin all the way, because all the lousy latent race-haters were booing him like bastards...

oh dear, the script got completely ripped into rags when gats got gold, and now the arsehole bbc presenters look like the fucking stupid triumphalist bunch of complacent establishment-trumpeting cunts they really fucking are...


bolt's hardly run this season and has not been anywhere near proper form...

so i reckon he had a million bucks laid on grifter gatlin to win - to sort a cash lump-sum for his pension...

either that, or before the race rattlin' gatlin necked a bucketful of performance-enhancing drugs in a bid to spoil the silly smug self-worshipping celebs' pathetic pre-scripted mass mutual masturbation party.

fucking a

i didn't really want bolt to lose, because he's a great chap, but suddenly somehow i really wanted battlin' gatlin to win

all looked fucking fixed to me

great result

fucking hilarious

and bolt didn't seem to give a blaadclaat fuck

he was only there to autograph the adoring amplified asses of his freaking female fan club

i came, i saw, i say cool man...jus han mi da bumbaclart cash bwoy said...

@i came, i saw, i say cool man...jus han mi da bumbaclart cash bwoy

may i make my most sincere apologies to english usage traditionalists and reverently ordained custodians of our great language for inadvertently employing the words "mass mutual masturbation party", when, as has since been duly pointed out to me, the more customary "mass mutual wank-fest" would have obviously been the appropriate phrase to have used in the circumstances...

but did you see michael "drug-cheats shall not prosper" johnson's face...?

fucking priceless

bolt wasn't bunged enough in my opinion

remember his commonwealth go slow?

Anonymous said...

He was defo sobbing Mr Mike - like a gimp. "Meh, the bigger boy's gonna beat me at this sport type thing". It was a bit upsetting for the crowd but there was media tittle tattle of extortionate ticket prices but even so, give the punters a match. He struggled through for the inevitable losers £1.25 million and fucked off to get a plaster.

I was watching a 1955 documentary on Le Mans last night where about 80 to 120 punters were killed - yep, they literally didn't do a head count - and the race continued for another 16 hours or something. The pretext being that they didn't want people clogging up the roads but Cilic's blister seems a bit tame.


Anonymous said...

I should like to know a bit more about who you are. Thank you.

Anonymous said...

I've been watching the PGA golf and Aliss mentioned that the golfers aren't shouting 'FOUR' anymore when they fuck up. Just seen a guy do it and genuinely heard 'get the kids Stephanie!' I think the golfers are trying to kill Americans - only possible explanation. They don't do drug tests in golf because the theory is - what could possibly help? It seems steroids are the drug of choice.


Woman on a Raft said...

Strange thing, golf, Mr DtP. I tried a few hours as a caddy to see what the devotion was about but I could barely stay awake. It's not like crazy golf which is on just as much a created landscape but goes the whole lunatic hog and has balls being put through lighthouses. Crazy golf does not have large swings but it has as much mucking about with putting as you could wish for, plus hilarity. It is even funnier if somebody gets very competitive and solemn about keeping score.

Dick the Prick said...

Strange thing, tennis, Mrs Woar. I played one set this year and enjoyed the nostalgia but, like cycling, not too sensible. Of the 4 Majors that make up the tennis grand slam, Federer's won 2 and Nadal the other 2 and they're both knackered, titanium based, drug addled Mengele experiments or Colin as we used to call him at school. Have you seen these Bogdanov Brother in France - Whitby would be proud!


I hope all's well Mr Smith. Labour are right - this is a Brexit land grab - only gonna know about something if you're looking for it. Hmm...

Trust you're prevented from hurricanes and floods and stuff? I live on a potentially land slip hill in the Pennines and we've done flow calculations from the reservoir and reckon we're good. If the Ice Age has already come down to Malham then a bit of rain shouldn't be too unexpected. Why not warm the planet - it aids life, gives rise to verdance and feeds the few. In the mean time...let's just watch Buddhists kick off! Someone should do a Mancunian Glasshopper.

As always



Woman on a Raft said...

Oooh, cycling, tell me about it. The new Yorkshire religion. The lanes and the lower hills around the Vale of York have been thronged with pelotons. The convention of hanging yellow bicycles in the trees has at least marked out their routes. I thought the novelty would wear off, but it has not.

Bogdanov - God save us, what did I just watch?

mrs narcolept said...

That's Spain crossed off the list of possible places to live in our dotage.

mongoose said...

Spain, mrs n, is no more a country than Germany or Italy is, or no more than perhaps the disunited United Kingdom is. If geographical Spain was Spain, Portugal would be part of it. And Catalonia has more anti-authority souls than most. It was all but yesterday after all.

Where is our host?

Gary said...


Doug Shoulders said...

Ditto the above.

Woman on a Raft said...


Anonymous said...

Are you dead? If so please advise.

Anonymous said...

I hope all is OK with you Mr Ishmael. Like others, I come here now and then in the hope of finding your thoughts.

Mr SG said...

Dang me! Your company is missed on the road Mr I.

Caratacus said...

One does worry, Mr. I ... not sure if you truly realise how valued you are, my dear old thing.

Dick the Prick said...


inmate said...

Dear mr Ishmael
Trust you are well and not suffering under the DoctorBastards.
I have suffered withdrawal symptoms this past 5 months of not being able to read your insights on the continuing Ruin we are all subjected to, so I have taken on the pleasurable task of returning to the Chronicles of Ruin, from the beginning, April 2009, to relive the wisdom of yourself and fellow travellers.
I recommend these Chronicles to all friends and relatives as should all Ishmaelians.

By the way, Peaky Blinders makes a welcome return this week.

The NightJack said...


Anonymous said...

Missing you very much, but hoping for the best.

Mike said...

Merry Christmas, Mr I.

Inmate said...

Merry Christmas mr and mrs Ishmael, pray you are in good health.

Woman on a Raft said...

With my very best wishes for you and your family and thankfulness for leaving words which repay careful re-reading.

Anonymous said...

Happy new year and hoping you are still alive.

Dr. Yllek said...


SG said...

At this rate we're gonna have to talk amongst ourselves Mr I. Maybe that's the idea?

Keep well if you are still on the mortal coil...

Anonymous said...

Hoping you are OK Mr Ishmael, and that you will be posting again soon.

Gary said...

C'mon pal.
Am anxious now. Corbyns gonna get the blame.....

mongoose said...

Mr Ishmael, I have great news.

The Dog-shooter misheard "Barnstaple" and initially went looking for his target in Dunstable. What a caper!

Woman on a Raft said...

And they are known as Dog-shooters to this day, so maybe something good came out of it.

gasky said...

We are running out of tea-lights, please return or we will have to deploy hashtags.

mrs narcolept said...

Birthday greetings and every good wish, mr ishmael, wherever you may be.

Mike said...

Mr I: Its been nearly a year since your last post. Your compatriot Andy Mutant has already retired from Wimbledon before the competition starts. Who are you putting your money on? Raffa or Roger? Or some Serb/Croat?

Tdg said...

I hope we mourn the blog, not the man.

Gary said...

Jaysus, my heart dropped when I saw the email.
Fearing the worst though...

Caratacus said...

My fond thought is that Mr. I is sitting in a chair, comfortably propped upon plumped cushions, a glass of the rarest malts to one hand and a bell to summon reserves as necessary in the other as he gazes about him with a paternalistic and benevolent air. I fully expect to see a fresh bag of ripe ordure poured about the heads of what passes for a gubmint in the very near future.

yardarm said...

With you there, Mr Caractacus.

Woman on a Raft said...

May his chimney ever draw and his hedge grow thick and slow.

Caratacus said...

Hear, hear Mrs WOAR. His voice is missed ...

Mike said...

Has Mr I adopted a new persona? (Juan, aka Auslander):


BTW the books by Auslander are a good read. (don't be put off by Kindle format, it can be installed free on PCs Mac etc)

Doug Shoulders said...

I doubt if Mr Ishmael, would leave his mates here without a word unless something serious has happened.
I come here every day in the hope..and I’m afraid to voice the fears I’m sure everyone has.

Gary said...

Over a year now. I must be honest, I fear the worst.

Caratacus said...

You speak for many mr. d. shoulders ... I pray that the spinners at the foot of Yggdrasil have yet to sew in a familiar thread.

Anonymous said...

Likewise still hoping for news, Mr Ishmael, that you are on Orkney and not under it.
Best wishes,