Olympic Spirit

I thought I had probably finished talking about the Olympics, but it seems not.

Another inspiring story came out of Rio.

In the women’s 5000 metres semi- final one of the athletes – Nikki Hamblin from New Zealand fell. A fellow runner, American Abbey D’Agostino also tumbled – they managed to get up but instead of re-joining the race immediately they stopped and helped each other


They then ran on together and finished in the last two places.

Officials allowed them through to the final because of the fall; unfortunately Abbey was too injured to race.

There was something of a happy ending though – the girls were given the International Fair Play Committee award for helping each other to finish following the falls.


It’s a shame that the spirit demonstrated by Abbey and Nikki was very different from the one consumed by some American swimmers on their night out!


Just One Liners

Every year at the Edinburgh Fringe they produce a list of the funniest jokes – I’ve been to the fringe several times and picking out the best can’t be an easy job.

The best jokes were chosen by a panel of critics who sat through an average of 60 comedy performances at the fringe – about 3,600 minutes of material. Each member then submitted their five best jokes and three worst joke nominations, which were put to 2,000 people with no reference to the comedians who told them.

Masai Graham’s joke (top one below) was named funniest by 27% of the poll’s respondents.

  “My dad has suggested that I register for a donor card. He’s a man after my own heart” – Masai Graham

  “Why is it old people say “there’s no place like home”, yet when you put them in one…” – Stuart Mitchell

  “I’ve been happily married for four years – out of a total of 10” – Mark Watson

  “Apparently 1 in 3 Britons are conceived in an IKEA bed which is mad because those places are really well lit” – Mark Smith

  “I went to a pub quiz in Liverpool, had a few drinks so wasn’t much use. Just for a laugh I wrote The Beatles or Steven Gerrard for every answer… came second” – Will Duggan

  “Brexit is a terrible name, sounds like cereal you eat when you are constipated” – Tiff Stevenson

  “I often confuse Americans and Canadians. By using long words” – Gary Delaney

  “Why is Henry’s wife covered in tooth marks? Because he’s Tudor” – Adele Cliff

  “Don’t you hate it when people assume you’re rich because you sound posh and went to private school and have loads of money?” – Annie McGrath

  “Is it possible to mistake schizophrenia for telepathy, I hear you ask” – Jordan Brookes

  “Hillary Clinton has shown that any woman can be President, as long as your husband did it first” – Michelle Wolf

  “I spotted a Marmite van on the motorway. It was heading yeastbound” – Roger Swift

  “Back in the day, Instagram just meant a really efficient drug dealer” – Arthur Smith

  “I’ll tell you what’s unnatural in the eyes of God. Contact lenses” – Zoe Lyons

  “Elton John hates ordering Chinese food. Soya seems to be the hardest word” –Phil Nicol

Pretty good list I think – my own favourites are the ‘Ikea’, ‘happily married’ and the ones about ‘home’ and ‘Canadians’. Also ‘rich’, ‘schizophrenia’ and ‘contacts’.

Which is pretty much all of them – I told you this wasn’t easy to choose just one didn’t I?

This one didn’t make the final list, but I think it should have done –

 “I’ve made a terrible spelling mistake in the wedding order of service. My stepfather, of course, is a COUNT’” Anna Morris

I think Tim Vine won last year.


If you’ve never been to the Fringe you really should get out to Edinburgh more  – if only for a laugh!

Post Script

Not content with e-mailing me special offers this enterprising bloke Mr Cai Wei has somehow got my home address and has posted me this very attractive offer –


The sad news is that Uncle John apparently died intestate which I imagine is a rather painful disease that occurred behind his y fronts.

Still, lucky for me eh?

Mission Impossible

We learned yesterday that the head coach for the British and Irish Lions 2017 tour to New Zealand will be announced two weeks from tomorrow (7th September).

In the worst kept secret since Clark Kent lost his horn rims, Warren Gatland will be revealed as the winner.

He is pretty well qualified – he led the Lions on the successful tour in 2013 and was assistant to ‘The Lion King’, Ian McGeechan in 2009.

He understands the Lions ethos and knows the All Blacks and their awesome power too.

He has been the lead candidate for some time – not least because Vern Cotter and probably Joe Schmidt have indicated their intention to return to NZ to coach (no prizes for guessing why – and who can blame them?).

Eddie Jones also ruled himself out of contention months ago.

Briefly there was a fanciful suggestion that Stuart Lancaster was in the frame – although I’m not sure anyone took that too seriously to be honest.

Gatland is a good and a sensible choice – he will know this is a poisoned chalice to some extent.

It would be special if the Lions can win one test next year, much less the series.

That realism will be key for the management and the squad in facing the challenge of taking on the World Champions on their own grounds.

The odds are always stacked against the Lions – this time more than ever.

The acceptance of a particularly stupid schedule will see us take on 3 tests, each of the 5 Super Rugby franchises plus the Maoris.

!0 matches in 5 weeks against the best players on the planet.

And just to make it even more fun, the first game is just a week after the Pro12 and Aviva Premiership finals! Also the Top 14 will still be in action.

So, any of the players in the finals will not meet up with the rest of the squad until about 4 days before the first game – brilliant!

Warren may need to circulate photographs of the squad beforehand, so that they recognise each other when they are putting on their boots.

Team building exercises will probably be on WhatsApp and Facebook.

Winning a Lions series is always difficult but the limited time together and the crazy itinerary make this one look like it’s out of the Mad Hatter’s playbook.

For the Lions to be viable in the professional era – it has to be run –well, professionally.

The Lions officials need to refuse to be bullied by the Southern Hemisphere when agreeing the tour details – otherwise the best supported touring team on the planet may cease to exist.

And that would be a dying shame.

One to Watch

320 of Team GB are landing at Heathrow today – flying in on a BA flight named VictoRIOus

The cone of the chartered plane is gold and one of the films they are showing is ‘Chariots of Fire’

Personally I would have preferred ‘Finding Dory’ as I haven’t seen it yet. Mind you I’m not on the plane!

‘The One Show’ are sending a coach to the airport in the hope of getting as many of Team GB as possible to appear live on the programme tonight.

Obviously some of the winners are already home – but with 130 athletes winning medals it will still have to be a bloody big coach!

Should be worth watching I think – BBC – 7 o’clock



An encouraging article just appeared in Cosmopolitan magazine and it begs one very big question – what the fuck am I doing reading Cosmo?

Actually it was on a news site and the headline grabbed me –


Obviously I am only an occasional reader of this magazine.

The point is – apparently chugging down champagne can help to ward off dementia and Alzheimer’s!

Did you know that?

Know what?

No idea!

Oh yeah I remember now – all I have to do now is to buy a shedload and hope I remember where I put it.

You’re buying sheds?

Yeah to fill with shampoo for some reason

And then hey presto I’ll be….something or other I expect.

Anyway Cheers!

Is that the one set in a bar in Boston?

No idea

Drink up – it’s good for you apparently


No idea.

Great, I think it must be working.

Ten out of Ten

I have frequently taken the rise out of the BBC about all the money (ours) that they piss away on stupidly high payments to executives, stars and on making dumb reality shows.

However, I have to hold my hand up and say that they did a bang up job on the Rio Olympics over the last couple of weeks.

Coverage and commentary (Inverdale excepted, obviously) was brilliant – the red button allowed you to watch just about every minute of the action in every arena.

Digital was good too – at one point we had one event on the box, a different one on my phone and Terry had some other sport on the i-pad.

Good job we didn’t get obsessed!

I still can’t work out why they needed to send 455 blokes and Doris to do this, but it would be churlish to complain I suppose.

Still – top marks BBC