Monday, September 03, 2007

Music To Watch Games By

It was a well-earned holiday week for TSA, but not a great sport-watching one. The main attractions for this correspondent - Celtic's Champions League qualifier against Spartak Moscow and the All-Ireland hurling final - were seriously compromised.

The former kicked off shortly before a return flight from Edinburgh to Dublin. The first half was fine, watched on BBC Scotland in TSA's sisters' house; no problems. The only mild inconvencience was the presence of TSA's 2-year-old nephew in the vicinity.

Due to the little fella adopting the same attitude to learning the English language as Long John Silver's parrot, the usual profanities that would accompany a match of this magnitude were forbidden. The only oath that crept out was an imprecation to the son of God on the occasion of a misplaced pass, which the child duly picked up like so many pieces of eight. Haha, Professor Dawkins! Another generation imprisoned by the irrationality of religion!

The second half, however, was less satisfactory. Wetherspoon's in Edinburgh airport isn't listed as one of Scotland's top pubs in any guide books I've read, but it isn't the worst of the genre. However, showing a crucial Champions League qualifier with the sound muted and the musical stylings of Avril Lavigne accompanying the action won't recommend this hostelry for future sporting occasions.

"Why'd you have to go and make things so complicated," the sulky Canadian once sang, and I couldn't disagree as boarding for the flight to Dublin was called in synchronisation with the commencement of extra-time.

I stomped my feet and stormed to my metaphorical bedroom, like Queen of Teen Spleen would have wished. Extra-time and penalties had to be consumed in bite-size portions: three terse text messages from my sister, like telegrams delivered to war-time widows (Mrs. Smith Stop Husband Dead Stop Line of Duty Stop King and country etc....).

They read:

1. V of H missed pen.

2. Penalties.

2. Yes! Yes! Yes!

In fairness, as coverage goes it was better than most of the match reports I read in the aftermath.

Pity she wasn't in Ireland to tell me about the All-Ireland hurling final yesterday. An executive decision by the organisers of the Electric Picnic meant that it wasn't being shown at the boutique music festival (boutique in the sense of being smaller, an adjective which didn't stretch to the piles of poo in the toilets by Sunday afternoon).

Never mind; one of the more resourceful food vans - which had a nifty, booming soundsystem previously used to showcase suitably EP-type hipster tunes - switched to RTE Radio 1 for the duration, so that the fittingly melodic tones of Micheal O Muircheartaigh chimed through the Stradbally air.

The sound formed was a sort of, er....sorry about this Micheal, but I believe the current parlance is "mash-up"....blending the bard of Dún Síon with unlikely bedfellows in the Beastie Boys, playing the nearby Electric Arena. As the opening riff of Sabotage cranked up, Kilkenny's charge to another title was nearing completion.

And to think that the Kilkenny panel sang the bloody Rose of Mooncoin in the dressing room after the match.

Jesus lads, as my 2-year-old nephew might say.


Blogger b2k said...


You weren't alone in missing the penalties. I was at the game and around me loads of people couldn't bear to watch. I don't know how you are about flying but as you were boarding the plane thousands of very nervous people were quaking but what a relief at the end. A bit like when Boruc saved in the last few minutes against Man United. The stadium rocked. Hail hail

6:49 p.m.  
Blogger WatchingCartoons said...

Caught most of the Celtic match on BBC Scotland, via Virgin Media cable. A few minutes into the second half of extra time, they moved the match from BBC1 Scotland to BBC2 Scotland. Following a few frantic moments of frantic button pressing, channel hopping and guide searching I discovered that Virgin Media don't do BBC2 Scotland.

Thankfully I had no vocabulary-absorbing 2-year-olds nearby. Finally managed to get the last few minutes and the penalties on the radio.

Hoping to have the operation to restore my fingertips later in the week.

12:46 p.m.  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

TSA -good to have you back
If I had to look at that spillane the beans pun one more time, I was heading for

Based on comments above can I suggest the seanchaoi of Annagry write an article on glorious sports moments missed by diehard fans due to misfortune/ineptitude/bad timing etc. I am sure many a comment would follow

There's an OSM top 10 in it


1:29 p.m.  

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