Finally a World Cup where we are not going to lose on penalties to Germany. Instead, in the guise of Bayern Munich, the Germans managed to conjure up a four week rest for our talisman and main hope of World Cup glory. This is the picture of the moment when it all went just right; a fired up Wayne Rooney wearing the three lions on his chest will bring home the FIFA World Cup Trophy.
I was listening to BBC World Service the other day and was intrigued to hear what Billy Bragg had to say about Englishness. He made the very good point that England is the only team going to the World Cup that doesn’t have its own Parliament or National Anthem. If the National Front had their way they would have us believe that we can add Christmas to this list. These revelations occurred on or about the same time that the stand-up comedian Michael McIntyre pointed out that the Scots have a habit of taking things that don’t belong to them and appropriating them. An example, the Scots took the tried and trusted boiled egg and turned it into a Scotch egg through the simple expedient of adding a few breadcrumbs. Watch him on You Tube giving lots more examples, hysterical.
Turning from sport, which favourite confectionery maker is destroying rainforests in their never ending quest for palm oil? Greenpeace are running banner ads all over the internet to make sure we don’t miss this one. Step forward Nestle and take a bow. You talk about corporate responsibility on your website but the truth is your business is driven by the never ending quest for increasing shareholder value and the directors getting a nice bonus at the end of the year. Please go and stand in the corner with all of your corporate banker mates.
Talking of the internet, for all of you in the UAE who have experienced problems with uploading pages in recent weeks, Etisalat has announced there is absolutely no problem. Last time they absolved themselves of all responsibility it ended in a very public spat with BlackBerry and this latest aberration is creating a bit of a stir in the comments section of Arabian Business. Feel free to join in by clicking this link.
It’s amazing when you start writing how everything links together. BlackBerry popped up in the paragraph above and this gives me the perfect opportunity to mention a very interesting article I read on the fading popularity of BlackBerry. In essence everyone still accepts it’s a great business tool but they want more, more, more from their mobile device. ‘Hats off’ to Steve Jobs and his merry men for creating the iPhone and then handing it over to the millions of Apple disciples to create ever more brilliant applications. Genius. I love my BlackBerry and as someone who lives the brand dream each and every day it takes a lot to shift my behaviour but the first seeds of doubt have been sown. Could there be a Heinz Baked Beanz to Branston Baked Beans moment just around the corner? On the subject of Branston one of the worst days in my life was when they dropped spicy Branston Pickle. Guys, big, big mistake; since the British invented curry the whole world is going spicier – you should not be heading down the milder route.
I started with sport so I’m going to finish with sport. News broke last week that David Sullivan, the chairman of West Ham, made a flying visit to Dubai to seek out investors. Doesn’t he read the British papers, we’re flat broke and if he snogs some unsuspecting women he’s off to jail with no sign of the keys.
Returning to the World Cup I went to a celebrity packed leaving do yesterday and here is the legendary Paul ‘Nudger’ Thornberry’s ‘top five footballers that ever lived’ list:
- George Best
- Eric Cantona
- Jim Baxter
- Johan Cruff
I’ll go first with my comments on Nudger’s list. Messi to replace Baxter and Maradona on instead of Cantona. I also reserve the right to have Rooney in my starting line up if he brings home the World Cup!