Sunday, 27 December 2009

Damned good? Or Saint Thaddeus

Only two Apostles left, and only two posts before the end of 2009. My final post will be so good that it will need to be named twice, and will include the obligatory round-up of the year. Best wishes to Mancini. I love his music.

Podcast Episode 4 is now up. I thank yew.

St. Thaddeus is not the most tedious of all the Apostles, although very little seems to be known about him, and even his name is shrouded in the usual confusion. In common with many Jews (it seems) around the turn of the BC/AD thing, he may have been called Jude. Most interestingly, he is the patron saint of lost causes, and as such has no doubt been called on by many a football fan in moments of extremis. He is also the patron saint of Flamengo in Brazil.

One footballing icon who definitely would not have invoked this (or any other, given that the only thing he believed in was himself) saint, as I am currently finding out, is Brian Howard Clough. I was fortunate enough to receive both the book and the DVD of The Damned Utd over the festive season, and am rattling through the book at a fair lick right now. The blurb makes claims that the book is among the best ever written about sport.

I haven't finished it yet, but would struggle to contest this claim, marvellously enjoyable as I am finding it to read. It is a riveting subject, and pretty well written, though repetition is perhaps, er, over-used as a literary device. Additionally, repetition is perhaps, er, over-used as a literary device. However, there are few others I can think of which would compete, especially in the realm of fiction. I have enjoyed various biographies and autobiographies (Maradonna's stands out particularly) and many good books ON football, but this is right up there with fictional/historical sports writing. I can only hope that the movie matches it and is an improvement on Goal! although that would not be difficult. Middlesbrough??!! I ask you. That there is a Goal! 2 is something of a surprise.

Best wishes to all for the New Year, though I will return before the end of 09.


Michael said...

That part of Peace's writing style does start grating after a while, doesn't it?
....does start grating.
...start grating.

Myeral said...

Quite! Without that device, the book would have been about 10 pages long. Finished it yesterday, though, and it was worth it. Looking forward to the DVD now.