A Mischief Of Magpies

If the Sun were the size of a beach ball then Jupiter would be the size of a golf ball and a Mischief of Magpies would be as small as a pea.

Monday, November 21, 2005

George Best

It's difficult to know what to say about the unfortunate George Best without sounding either mawkish or hideously calous.

George Best is a bit of a dirty word to some people. To Des McKeown, now manager of Stenhousmuir FC, Best is not worthy of the reverence he received from his public. As a player of average abilityMcKeown is brutally scathing in his book "Don't Give Up The Day Job" about a man with a great talent who then pissed it up the wall, retiring long before he should have. There can be nothing more annoying as a journeyman pro who works a full week in a job, trains twice a week with his club and maintains a fitness regime off his own back, to see the likes of Best and his various pisshead soulmates down the years(Baxter,Gazza etc) revered and idolised unquestioningly by the media and fans whilst treating their god given talent with contempt.

So, what would Best have been like had he been teetotal, had he been a dilligent learner of the game, had he kept himself physically fit and limited himself to only one Miss World a week............? Well, He'd have been a better footballer and for far longer but it seems to be a law of football and a few other sports that the more natural talent you have, the less likely you are to attempt to improve yourself and the more likely you are to spend your time in the pub, at the bookies or chasing the birds.

I would like to say thankyou to George Best though. I never saw him play due to my tender years, but there can be no doubt that the tv footage of the man in his prime is utterly spellbinding, even to those not terribly interested in football. He's not long for this world and I know the eulogies will be as heartfelt and honest as they will be mealy mouthed and cliched.

It's unfortunate that as a player he knew when he had to quit. As a drinker, he had no such luck.

The final line is glib and corny. It's also true. Sorry.


At 1:05 am, Blogger PROFESSOR SMILE said...

As I recall, Georgie Best was the first real Superstar of Soccer, running at the same time as The Beatles. As I recall, again (I'm glad I'm not on "Millionaire") he was good at seizing the opportunity for the sort of stylish goal that is a schoolboy's dream. It was just before footballers started openly hugging and kissing each other after goals. George would run gloriously back down the field smiling a toothy grin, long black carefully styled hair flowing sexily behind him!
I don't recall much because Scottish television only really let me know how Rangers, Cellic, Hearts and Aberdeen were doing. (They had stars, but not the kind who were bedroom wall pin-up material).
Personally I can now understand the problems that repeated led to his aclohol abuse. I've been there myself, for different reasons. It's not easy to act like a superman when you know you're not, even when you know lots of people want you to. FAme and public exposure does not make for greater confidence or performance in the bedroom, for example.
Anyway, I salute the greatness in him and I accept that his weknesses were no greater than mine. Frankly I think even he would agree that this stage of his life has been stretched out too agonisingly long. I hope he's off peacefully tonight. But I agree that surviving footage of his peak performances should be inspirational to young footballers and fans today.
Playboy is a fun profession that often ends badly. The ending does not invalidate how much fun the person has experienced, given and shared.
I cease now, startled at how much I have said, especially considering from the age of 12 I was never interested in football,except maybe internationals and finals. But Clairwil asked me to come to this blog, so......enough. Shut. Bye Georgie, you were the best (once).


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