BONJOUR TO you all good citizens of Keynsham and Libourne, and welcome to the second Miller's Tale, which, this month examines the real reasons for England's dramtic, pant-soiling exit from Euro 2004.
That dodgy penaly spot up close
(Chris Bonnington not pictured)
The late, great Bill Shankly once said: "Football is not a matter of life and death, it's more than that." And, as the myriad flags and banners are taken down and stowed away for at least another two years, we are all inclined to agree. Love it or loathe it, football has swept the nation up in a storm of wonderkids and dodgy penalty kicks, and the hangover will take time to fade.
• Read More Of Albert Mills' Musings
Our squad of product-endorsed, trend-setting, celebrity-dating, World-famous millionaires tried their best to succeed, but the grim reality is we weren't good enough. Hard to swallow I know, but it's the truth. But let's not allow bare facts to get in the way of top-class excuses! Far from accepting this disasterous turn of events, we must rise up and find bigger and better reasons for our exit at the hands (or is that feet) of Portugal.
THE RUMOUR MILL
HOW CAN the powers-that-be dare consider building on the 'Rec' in Sherwood Road. As young lads we'd play 20-a-side footy (rush-back goalies) on that hallowed turf. An old aquaintence of mine claims that little green oasis was where he first discovered he could light his own farts. The Rec is steeped in history, not to mention dog sh!t and litter. Build your Granny Park on the BANES staff car park if it's that important to you. Vandals.
Take, for example, that dodgy penalty 'spot'. Look closely at the replays as the former Brylcreem Kid takes his kick and you'll notice that the much-disputed blob of white paint is in fact Western-movie style quicksand! It's true! We watched with our own eyes as players attempted to flatten the offending area. They trod on the right side, the left side rose up and so on. It's called displacement and it's made Beckham look like a Downs League lard-ass, ballooning the ball into the trees by the water tower. Surely the groundsman was Portuguese? Oh, yeah, he was. D'oh!
MILLS ON WHEELS
WOULD THE bloke who almost mowed me down in his car near the High Street last week kindly take note: If you ever do that again I'll make sure that the only car you'll be driving will be one where you change gear with your rectum. Does 'Pedestrian Friendly' mean anything to you?
Then there's uber-schoolkid Wayne Rooney and his injured ankle? Agreed, it was a cruel blow, but it was as if we'd had a man sent off, not replaced. To defend any deeper would have been to employ Bovis Homes to knock up a three-bedroomed semi in the goal mouth. For once we all agreed with Alan Hansen's whingeing as we watched 'our boys' make base camp in their own 18-yard box, employing the rarely-used 8-1-1 formation.
ALBERT'S MINI MOAN
I BARELY stifled my laughter when I read in the Observer about the fuss concerning some councillor-or-other who was told off for calling a bunch of kids rude names in the press. Well, there's the sound of free speech being silenced. One honest outburst and suddenly everyone is clambering behind the sullied flag of Communism, trying to banish the loose-tongued and frank. Surely a newspaper that prints real feelings and real news is a good thing. Sticks and stones and all that...
And what about the referee?! That Swiss cock was under the impression that yellow cards were strictly for showing to England players. To cap it all off, he disallows a perfectly legal goal, presumably because it was scored by a defender. Or was it due to a player being onside? Maybe he'd placed a hefty-proportioned bet on "one-all after 90 minutes, Owen to score first"? Either way, he was crap. Collina come back!
WHO PUT the 'sham' in Keynsham?
Ultimately, we were beaten by the better groundsman, defeated by the heat, robbed by the ref, pipped by the Portugeezers and, quite simply, knackered from playing too many games. Thankfully the Greeks went on to win. At least we'll all have a better time in Corfu this year, fuelled by generous helpings of Ouzo dished out by our 'Best In Europe' hosts. I'll certainly drink to that!
• Bloke About Town
• Citizen Cane
• Monthly Moan
• The Bottom Line
THE BOTTOM LINE
Charlton avoids a Euro 2004-related heart attack by taking a stroll in the local countryside and reminiscing about the hazy days of yore.
Eli McChurch ruminates on why the flags should keep flying and reveals a strange-but-true story about one of the town's oldest ex-shops.
Our exclusive Could 'Dis Be Cane Shum
T-Shirts are on sale now! FULL T-SHIRT DETAILS
AL-SAHAF IN KEYNSHAM
BANES' press spokesman Muhammed Saeed al-Sahaf steps forward with his boldest claim yet - that we are, in fact, alone! GET A LOAD OF MO!
KEYNSHAM WEB CAM 9
Our latest camera is looking out for fish in the park.
BLOKE ABOUT TOWN
William Bloke serves up his thoughts about parents who insist on driving their children to and from school.
WHO ARE YA?
Cane Shum Crown Court is in session once again, filtering out all mongers of wrong-doing from our quaint little town. This month, the Judge - Justice Yootha Dunn-Goode QC - gives the hair drier treatment to the persons responsible for till managment in our banks and shops. What's your game? You have expensive refits, replete with smug name-and-logo carpets etc, and yet you still only open two tills. You have staff milling around the place looking all important, and only two of 'em are actually doing anything. Why? We're stuck in the queue while you lot sit in booths and offices poking PC's and chewing your pens. Serve us! Take our feckin' money! Open all the tills. Please.