Happy Christmas to you all...
I am now on holiday until 5 January 2015.
The annual collection of good produce from local supplier at Priory Farm tomorrow morning will fill the refrigerator with traditional fayre.
Then I will be up to London to escort my Mum to Merstham on the limited train service to stay until 2 January. It will be a change for Mum, which will hopefully give her a boost as she hasn't been away from her flat in Covent Garden for a long time.
Christmas Day lunch will be my "traditional" which has served well since the boys were lots younger and first spent Christmas with me after Jo and I went our separate ways.
The Menu will be something like :
Starter - Prawn and Salmon parcels.
Main - Roast Turkey with stuffing and trimmings, Roast Potatoes, Swede and Carrot Mash, and Steamed Brussel Tops with Rosemary Butter.
Followed by Christmas Pudding and Mince Pie with cream and custard.
Wine will be a Chateau Neuf-du-Pape with the main followed by a Dessert Wine and ending up with some Port.
It is really pretty good "dos" as my family says.
It is coming up for that time of year - just pre-post-Christmas - when a glance back over the past 51 weeks brings a smile or a sigh or both.
Mine brings a smile.
It has been a good year in most areas of note.
The Science Museum, Imperial War Museum, Eastbourne, The Greenwich Maritime Museum and Number 24 Bus have all provided stimulating and enjoyable times.
However, the BIG memory will be the brilliant installation of poppies at the Tower of London - "Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red". Moving, provocative and very poignant.
I am lucky enough to say that this year has brought some great gigs and music my way...
It looked like this:
19/2 Just Julia, Emmy The Great
21/2 Jake Bugg
7/3 John Cooper Clarke
26/3 Art Club, Paul Hawkins & the Awkward Silences, Summer Camp
1/5 Seth Lakeman, Billy Bragg
23/5 Duke Garwood, Seasick Steve
4/7 Hop Farm Festival - Jezabels, Lightning Seeds, 10cc, The Full English, Nick Lowe, Paul Heaton and Jacqui Abbot, Echo and The Bunnymen, Ray Davies
5/7 Hop Farm Festival - Tinlin, Azedah, The Feeling, Paul Carrack, Slow Club (1), Nerina Pallott, Squeeze, James Blunt, Brian Wilson
6/7 Hop Farm Festival - Ordinary Noise, Meadowlark, The Dunwells, Danny and The Champions of The World, The Family Rain, The Beat, Sophie Ellis-Bextor, Chas & Dave, Peter Hook and The Light, Marc Almond, Billy Ocean, Grace Jones
12/9 Paul Thomas Saunders, Rae Morris,
11/11 Happyness, Slow Club (2),
2/12 Ella The Bird, NEEDTOBREATHE
... AND I landed a ticket for next year's Glastonbury Festival.
Enjoyed the Scouting this year. Good camps and reunion .
Seven Cub Scouts achieved the Chief Scouts Silver Award this year.
Numbers have grown to 24 in the Pack, so we are now at full capacity.
All of this and my beloved Gunners won some silverware after all this time.
Getting a little late now, so I must to bed.
This has been a good year, and I am already looking forward to 2015.
I caught the fall out of Black Friday when I covered at the Uxbridge office - piles of Amazon and other packages hit the Post Room on Tuesday of this week. I am realistic enough to see that people can't resist a bargain, but have to ask the retailers why they can't sell the goods at these prices all year round.
I was surprised to read that on Cyber Monday, Visa was expecting that £5000 per second would be crossing their system in the UK.
Creating fanatical demand is not a good thing, as evidenced by the need for Police Intervention in at least four London stores. I cannot understand the darker side of the human condition which leads to folks fighting over a TV set.
At least the numbers of items coming into my normal office in Woodhatch are steady, although inflated.
I have been a licensed road user since about 1976, but had a new experience this week.
While driving home on the main road from Horley after doing some Christmas errands, I was waved down and stopped by a Police Officer with a speed gun. This has never happened to me before.
I realised straight away what the issue was, but as I told the PC, it did not seem THAT fast - I was just on the way home.
It seems that I was doing 41 mph in a 30 mph zone.
Rather than issuing me with a caution (and points on the license) the officer gave me a warning and there will be a note on my license that I have been stopped for 12 months. If it happens again in this time, there will be no leeway.
I guess that if nothing else, this will refocus my attention on driving speeds.
NEEDTOBREATHE (acoustic) at Bush Hall was terrific. The band seemed to be feeling their way a little and suggested that this was the first fully acoustic set they had performed. They are a good bunch and their experience showed.
The Christmas gig by Slow Club scheduled for next Friday (12th) has sadly been cancelled as Rebecca has been told by the medical team to rest until the end of the year.
This is the first concert that I have experienced being cancelled in 36 years of gig-going.
Seasick Steve is releasing a new album next March and touring. I have pre-ordered a signed CD and booked up tickets at Hammersmith for James and Tara and me to see the Dawg in April.
I was asked to play Father Christmas at a Family Day in a couple of weekends time at the office. It is a nice thing to be asked.
At first I baulked at the idea, but then warmed to it.
Oddly, in a straw poll of friends and family asking if I should do it, only 3 friends who are Scouters told me categorically "No, don't do it". Everyone else said, "Go for it, it will be fun".
Having settled on this, a colleague told me in a quiet moment that he felt a bit sad when I changed my mind and decided to do the job - he had thought that he would really like to do the Santa thing.
Of course, I told the organiser that I had stepped down in favour of my colleague and felt better for it.
I think it is much better to do this sort of thing if you WANT to do it rather than because you COULD do it. Fair play, I say.
Judging on how I am feeling better about my eventual decision to decline this opportunity, perhaps I just need learn to say "No" and stick with it rather than over analyse.
Not a bad couple of games for the Gunners since my last update.
Without Alexis Sanchez however, I wonder where they would be. He runs and runs and scores. Seems to be a great buy.
"Wenger Out" ? - my take is to be careful what you wish for. He may have had his day, but I can't see anyone fit to replace him. Arsene has an eye for talent and no one can deny that he helps the Arsenal Board run the business in a very sensible manner.
Frustrating to see that even when they are beating one of the best teams in Europe Borrusia Dortmund 2-0, half of the Arsenal "Faithful" see fit to make their way home with 10 minutes to go rather than cheer the team's success at the final whistle.
Having to go to Stockley Park has messed with my Scouting, but next Monday is the last of the year - it was planned to be a games night, but we are going to have to make cards and finishing Christmas presents (shhh... don't mention it.)
The Leaders are quite pleased as this year 7 cubs have been presented with the Chief Scout Silver Award, which is the highest achievement a Cub can get.
Managed to get Mum out to Marks and Spencer last Saturday and we got her a few new clothes to wear over her stay at Christmas. It went pretty well and we didn't have raised voices.
And that, dear reader, is about it for this one.
Until next time...
"Interesting" week spent trying to avoid the mayhem that is known as the M25 commute between Merstham and Uxbridge.
The journey is great (40-45 minutes) when it works - it rarely does, but when there is a problem just pick a time between 90 minutes and 3 and a half hours.
I broke my personal record for a trip to Uxbridge on Wednesday morning, leaving home at 06:00 and getting to the Stockley Park office at 09:10.
This was due to a road closure at the Reigate junction which prevented cars going onto the motorway at junction 8. This was compounded by accidents on my alternative route and road closures for maintenance (road and water mains) in Surrey.
My misery was brought into perspective as I neared the Uxbridge office - there were Emergency Services attending to another car shunt and the roof of one of the cars had been cut off to allow access to one poor driver. At least I had a better trip to work than that poor driver.
On Thursday morning, a left hand drive truck from European haulage firm Waggeners, found himself in the wrong lane for an exit to the M3 and almost took me out of the game as he pulled over right, back onto the M25, where I was minding my own business.
I am not too easily unnerved, but I took a few minutes to regroup!
At least I escaped that one unscathed.
I only have two more days scheduled at the Canon Europe office, 25 November and 1 December, so wish me luck with those.
Little to report in the footie, except that the Gunners seem unable to defend a lead at the moment. The last two results against Anderlecht (3-3 after being 3-0 up) in the Champions League, and losing the lead to go down 2-1 against Swansea in the Premiership do not fill me with much hope.
On the up side, Theo Walcott is nearly back, Giroud is in contention for the game on Saturday, Jack Wilshere is getting back to form after injury and Alexis Sanchez has been a revelation.
The Slow Club gig at the Electric, Brixton was really quite special. I think they are a class act. So much so, in fact that I saw a notice that they are playing a small gig at the Old Church in N16 London on Friday 12 December and could not resist. This is just going to be a two piece concert with Rebecca Taylor and Charles Watson performing on their own. Looking forward to that. Here is the latest single, "Everything Is New"
The following Friday, 19 December I am booked to go to Hammersmith to see the annual science based entertainment that is Brian and Robin's Christmas Compendium of Reason. This is hosted by comedian Robin Ince who friend Professor Brian Cox and other popular science worthies and other guests giving the audience a very interesting evening. Last year's show was stolen by Commander Chris Hadfield (ISS astronaut) doing a Q&A and singing his version of "Space Oddity" (which raised the roof). It is good to hear very smart people talking about things which excite them about their field.
Blackpool-born singer-songwriter Rae Morris has also announced the release of her debut album "Unguarded" in January 2015. This will be supported by a tour and I am off to see her at the Electric, Brixton on 12 February. Here is the last single "Closer".
And another of my band of favourites, Emmy the Great is also out and about and is on a short UK tour early next year. This time I will be away to the Green Door Store in Brighton on 28 January. Here is her first tune for some time, "Swimming Pool", on her website.
That I think is about all I have for now, so until next time -
Take care and love to all
As has become the norm, I really can't believe that it is the best part of a month since my last update to BlogFest.
Either time flies when you are having fun, or time is going quicker as I get older !
Centenary of the "War to End All Wars"
In the UK, we have seemingly embraced the 100 year anniversary of the outbreak of the First World War. The most iconic scene has been produced by the installation artist Paul Cummings, who has been planting close to 888,246 ceramic poppies in the moat at the Tower of London. It is a stunning piece of work and is very moving - "Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red".
Luckily I went up to the Tower a few weeks ago, and managed to get a few photos. The last two weekends, it has been heaving with people and has become a bit of a free for all.
The last poppies will be planted on Armistice Day, 11 November, after which it will be dismantled and the poppies sold in aid of Armed Services charities. Two parts are being saved - one section each will go to the Imperial War Museums in Manchester and London.
Some more photos can be seen here.
Trip to the Imperial War Museum
On 25 October, four Adults and 16 cub scouts we headed up to Lambeth and went to the recently revamped Imperial War Museum. London stations and streets were heaving with tourists and families enjoying the first weekend of the school half term.
I had not visited the museum since I lived in London as a kid.
I enjoyed it, especially the World War One galleries, which are very informative and nicely laid out.
There are a more few photos here.
Cub Scouts postponed
Very wet weather caused the weekly Cub Scout meeting to be postponed - rain water had seeped under the wood block flooring causing it to swell and form humps like traffic speed bumps.
Traffic mayhem in Reigate has also caused us problems - a planned quiz trail around the town has been rescheduled until road works on major roads around the area have been completed in early 2015.
Greenwich - Maritime Museum and the Longitude Problem
Last Saturday, I went up to London (as normal) to keep an eye on my Mum and took in the Tower Poppies for a second (very crowded) time on the way, and a visit to the Maritime Museum on the way back.
I had seen a poster for an exhibit about the Longitude Problem and how it was solved on a train.
This is the sort of history I love - an individual's dedication to solve a problem, up against the establishment and fighting for recognition.
John Harrison created timekeepers to maintain an accurate record of the time in Greenwich for mariners. Using the time difference between their local time and GMT, they were able to calculate their longitudinal position.
In the 1720s, this was considered a big enough problem for shipping that a prize of
GBP 20,000 was offered (about GBP 3,000,000 today).
The timekeepers "H1", "H2", "H3" and "H4" were masterpieces of design and overcame the major problems (temperature variance, ship's movement etc) brilliantly.
It is a great story.
Silly Season has started, so I am going to be sharing my work time between Woodhatch and Uxbridge until (currently 5 December). The plan is pretty disjointed, but we shall see what physical effects it has on me...
Tomorrow (11 November), I am up to the Electric in Brixton to see Slow Club, (for my money, at least) a great duo.
On 2 December, I am booked to see NEEDTOBREATHE play an acoustic gig at the lovely Bush Hall in London's Shepherd's Bush.
Christmas present to me is on 20 December, when I am up to the Hammersmith Odeon to see the science based annual "Christmas Compendium with Brian Cox and Robin Ince"
Already booked for next year are:
Emmy The Great
and the Glastonbury Festival.
TTFN, my Friends. until then...
A bit of down time after a busy start to Monday gives me a chance to bring news up to date.
Last weekend was a very busy one. I was expecting to be kitchen gopher at a Beaver and Cub Scout Training Course weekend (you know the drill, "Could you make some coffee and tea?", "Can you peel some carrots?", "We need to wash those pots up", that sort of thing). On Friday morning, I got an email from the Course Leader telling me that the main cook and also another helper were both sick and could not attend. Help was being requested, but could I still come along.
Of course, I did go - but unfortunately little extra help was forthcoming. Still, the Course Leader had modified the menu to a Ploughman's Lunch on Saturday and Lasagne for Sunday so it would be a little easier to manage.
The attendees also washed up their lunch dishes which was an unexpected bonus for me.
We got away with it, and it was a hard couple of days, but 30 trainers and trainees got through the weekend fed and watered and seemed content enough.
The annual battle which comprises the Glastonbury Festival ticket sale has taken place.
This is an act of massive faith as no acts are confirmed until later in the year, so you don't know who will be performing.
15,000 "Green" tickets - for those of us who don't mind coach travel rather than going by our own car - sold out in 14 minutes on Oct 1.
150,000 ordinary tickets sold out in 24 minutes in the main sale on October 6.
The Green ticket sale time is remarkable, as the process involves choosing a day of travel, time of departure and also city of departure as well as entering pre-allocated registration numbers to actual get a festival ticket.
Long story to short, I secured my ticket for the Glastonbury Festival of Music and Contemporary Arts 2015 after 9 minutes of the green ticket sale.
Getting a ticket gives one (me, at least) a massive morale boost - simply because you will be at Worthy Farm again at the end of June next year.
Q: What can you do at the Glastonbury Festival and nowhere else on the planet?
A: Stand at the gate just past Entrance A, look out over the site, smile and say "Wow, this is it - I'm here - I am at the Glastonbury Festival !"
I really am pretty excited about it.
Cub Scouting carries on, recently we have had visits from the local Community Police Officer, we are visiting the local Pets@Home store this evening and next week are looking a Hazards at Home and at the Scout Hut.
Upcoming, a trip is planned to the re-vamped Imperial War Museum in Lambeth, London with a sleepover at the Scout Hut.
I have been binge-watching one of my favourite ever TV dramas "The West Wing". I am nearing the end of Season 5 of 7. Sharp writing, great characters, marvellous cast, wit/tragedy and light/dark all make for a fabulous televisual experience. I really cannot praise this enough.
Nothing unusual to report about the Footie. The Gunners are suffering a injury jam, but somehow haven't absolutely disgraced themselves yet this season. Time will tell how this one will pan out.
Oh, and England are apparently brilliant as they have won all of their Euro qualifying matches...
A month since my last update. Time does not feel kind when it careers past as it has done since my August catchup.
Work is getting back to normal - supervisor was off on leave, and then sick for a few days. Ho hum...
I need a break, but it seems that I have taken all my leave entitlement in dribs and drabs and it is used up or booked for Christmas.
Oddly, although my leave is all gone, I don't feel like I have done anything or rested at all. This might be because I haven't and that festival, gig attendance and Cub Scout camps have frittered it away, but I must address this in 2015, when I will get a bonus 3 days after 10 years service.
As I say, I am need of a break as I am struggling not to feel jaded.
Anyway, the news...
The 88th annual Gilwell Reunion was really enjoyable. We hadn't been for 3 years and a good time was had by all.
Cub Scout meetings started after the summer break and we have had 6 or 7 newbies from either Beavers or " fresh off the street". Challenging times.
Our programme for the winter term doesn't look too bad (from the leadership side any way). The next few weeks see the District Push Cart competition, which is a good one with thrills and spills. watch this space... !
I had a smashing evening at the Green Door Store in Brighton in the company of Rae Morris. I think she is a great, blossoming talent. I am looking forward to her album, which is due for release in Q1 of 2015.
More good news is that NEEDTOBREATHE are playing three acoustic dates in the UK in December. I have got tickets for 2 December at Bush Hall in London's Shepherd's Bush. Looking forward to that one.
My beloved Arsenal are not yet firing on all cylinders, but have only lost in the Champions League against Dortmund.
Sanchez seems to have hit the ground running, Ramsey is playing reasonably consistently and "Our Jack " has had a few good moments.
Injuries have decimated the Gunners defence.
I hope the players who are currently MIA can turn things around.
Adieu, Mes Amis.
Let's be careful out there...
It has been a few weeks since my last regular update. I really don't know where the time goes...
The Hop Farm Festival exceeded expectations. The bill was great, the acts which I was more familiar with did not disappoint - special mention to 10cc, Squeeze, Billy Ocean and Bellowhead.
Friday night legend Ray Davies played an emotional set to celebrate his sister who had passed the day before. Although it was always likely to bring a tear, his rendition of "Days" was very poignant and yes, I had a serious blub which I could not disguise as the weather has lovely and dry.
Although Saturday's headliner Brian Wilson's band did play a good set of Beach Boy hits (in fact hit after hit after hit), Brian Wilson himself is very frail and was really only able to introduce the songs he had written. The nine band members (plus ex-Beach Boy Al Jardine) were great musicians and singers, so all was not lost.
It was interesting to see the reaction to James Blunt, who played an enjoyable enough set. I still don't buy in to the "Wide-eyed Posh Boy, eager to please, need to be loved, but shocked that I am this popular" persona that Blunt has, but there is no doubt he has powers over his fans - it he claps, both the ladies and men all clap dutifully, if he gestures that he wants them to wave their arms, they do that too.
On the Sunday, Peter Hook and the Light really ended my must-see festival wish list and played a very high energy set including versions of New Order's "Blue Monday" and best of all Joy Division's "Transmission" and "Love Will Tear Us Apart".
Acts new to me and deserving very honourable mentions are Ordinary Noise, Meadowlark, Timlin, The Dunwells, The Family Rain and my new band tip for greatness, Slow Club.
Met some nice people, temorarily lost my tent on Friday night and enjoyed the weekend a lot.
<My Hop Farm Festival Photos Here>
World Cup Brazil was really enjoyable, the only mar being the leniency of the Suarez ban after his third biting incident.
Put simply, the country with the best team won the trophy. Brazil, Argentina and the Netherlands all had great individuals, but Germany had the best team.
It looks like the Germans have got their footballing act together. The nucleus of the team have grown up together and I suspect will be a force for at least the next four years.
Work has been slack in the office, but yesterday there was a Family Day in the grounds at the Canon UK office in Woodhatch. Although I was in the reception area keeping and eye and checking the people in for about four and a half hours, the couple of hundred who attended all seemed to have a good time. There were some birds of prey, crafting, bouncy castles, soft play areas, Pimms and pizzas. It was nice to be involved in whatever capacity.
I spent a day at the Canon Europe office last Tuesday.
5th Reigate (Gibson) Cub Scouts - we have had a meeting themed around the 2015 Jamboree in Japan, we tried to navigate the orienteering course on Redhill Common last week, and have a wet games evening planned to end this term on Monday.
NASA and Apollo 11. I cannot stress this enough - those guys were heroes, but I cannot believe it is 45 years since Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin walked on the Moon.
THE MOON - I am still in awe.
I did publish a separate blog about that.
'Til the next one...
Brazil 2014 - FIFA World Cup
Only two games left in the group stages and they have produced some great matches : unpredictability, fabulous goals and the predicted sad performance by England.
My hit rate of correct results is less than 50%, but that has not spoilt my enjoyment.
The only annoyance for me has been that the ban of Luis Suarez is only 4 months. The man clearly needs help to control his biting problem, but he could get this during a year's ban, and seriously reflect on his behaviour.
I will be able to see the knock-out stage ("Round of 16") during this week, but will miss the Quater-Finals as I am away at the Hop Farm Festival next weekend
Following a couple of pointers from my sources, I have become acquainted with a couple of new musical "friends".
Emma Stevens is a "self funding DIY singer songwriter". I have contributed a little to the funding of her "Album 2" after hearing and getting my hands on her first CD, Enchanted. Here is a track from that - Riptide.
Nice pop music from a great talent.
Courtney Barnett was brought to my notice by @sankles, one half of my favourites Summer Camp. She is another singer-songwriter, this time from Australia. Her voice is perhaps a bit reminicent of Alanis Morrisette or Sheryl Crow. Her CD, The Double EP: A Sea of Split Peas is real good and very interesting. Try History Eraser.
The 2014 Glastonbury Festival of Music and Comtemporary Arts kicks off on Friday 27 June. Of course I would love to be there, but no ticket means I will have to see what I can from the comfort of my armchair. At least 4 of "my" people are performing this year -
The Tuts, Billy Bragg, Summer Camp and Courtney Barnett - but I doubt that any of them will get coverage.
I am having a festival fix the following weekend, at the Hop Farm Festival in Kent.
The bill looks good - Ray Davies, Brian Wilson, Bellowhead, Paul Heaton and Jacqui Abbott (Beautiful South), Deacon Blue, Lightning Seeds, Squeeze, The Full English, Chas and Dave and many others on the music stages and an accomplished list in the comedy tent.
Hope the weather is good for both Glastonbury and Hop Farm !
I have just updated my status on Facebook:
Just one more sleep until the start of a weekend of Scouting madness. Get a few leader tents up tomorrow evening, then get food, gear, ridge tents and other tentage to Broadstone Warren to make camp proper on Friday. Cubs arriving 18:30-19:00. Fun and games (and it looks like rain at times) on Friday evening, Saturday and Sunday a.m. Screaming starts Sunday p.m. as we try to break camp with tired cubs and leaders. If the canvas comes down dry, happy days. Otherwise more mayhem at the Scout Hut and a re-jigging of the programme for Monday's "normal" pack meeting.
Nothing like a relaxing weekend....
Enjoy yours Good People ---- Ours will be brilliant.
Scouting is something we enjoy and believe in. I think that our putting in a shift gives the Young People something that modern times does not always allow - a chance to do something out of the ordinary. A bit of a challenge and ultimately the opportunity to give new things a try.
We can't expect everyone to be brilliant at everything, but surely not shying away from something simply because it is unfamiliar and giving citizens the confidence to try "as best as you can" has to be a good thing for the individual and society at large.
And in other news...
I am still coughing a bit (more than I would want going into the camp) but I am hopeful that by the start of the World Cup I will have won the battle.
Seasick Steve put on a great show at the Royal Albert Hall . He is a class act. Ten years previously, Seasick Steve was playing to club audiences of only 20 or 30, now the man is a star. My page about the gig is <here>.
In April, (only a couple of weeks ago) we have Easter and it's associated Good Friday and Bank Holiday weekends. Hot on the tail of those we have what before Mrs Thatcher's interference was known as the "May Day Holiday" - the Bank Holiday on Monday is now unimaginatively called the "Early May Bank Holiday".
With the bank holidays, and a few days leave plus a couple of days sick, it seems like an absolute age since I last worked a full week - it is probably four weeks at least. A chap could get used to that.
We are having a Cub Scout meeting tomorrow on the Bank Holiday - a bit of fire making.
Been a little 'busy' this week on the music front. I have received a couple of CDs through the post and "collected" a couple of others.
On Thursday (May Day) I enjoyed a great evening at the Hammersmith Eventim with Billy Bragg. The atmosphere was like school "end of term". Good support from Seth Lakeman and Phill Jupitas. <<photos here>>
On Friday, tickets for the Seasick Steve gig at the Royal Albert Hall on 23 May dropped on the doormat. Unusual one this, as it is for a Dog Charity and I will be going with James and his girlfriend,Tara. I am looking forward to that one.
With only one game left in the season, my beloved Arsenal have managed to secure 4th place in the Premier League and so are in the Champions League qualifying knock-out stages next season.
Just hope that they don't gag when it comes to the FA Cup Final against Hull City in two weeks time.
I have been a bit annoyed by criticisms of the Arsenal set up this season. I agree that after being on top for so much of the season, maybe - just maybe - they should have finished stronger. I think however that people's expectations needed to be brought back a bit.
At the start of the season, pundits expected nothing from the Gunners - in fact, even as they topped the table at Christmas, nobody tipped them as Champions.
As has been proved right, they could simply not cope with games at the "top" clubs.
I resent the "I told you" from the smug pundits - there are lot of Arsenal-haters out there. They expected nothing of the Gunners. The bubble has burst.
If that is actually the case, tell me why they are fourth in the table ? The beauty of a league is that the team who finishes top deserves to be top - no more, no less.
In their defence, it was a close-thing. I wonder how close they could have come if Theo Walcott, Aaron Ramsey, Lucas Podolski and Jack Wilshere had not suffered long-term injuries when their form was excellent.
I do enjoy a fan's "what-if" and "if-only".
I think in honesty that Arsenal's squad needs increasing to improve it's strength in depth. The nucleus of the team is great, but lacks injury and rotation cover. A couple of players out and there is just no players to come in and do a job.
From a personal point of view, Nikolas Bendtner needs to be replaced and Yaya Sanogo needs experience at another club. In particular, I cannot see what Arsene Wenger sees in Sanogo - he does not seem to have a clue.
Relegation is now certain for Cardiff City and Fulham, if results go as expected Norwich City will join them in the drop.
To this armchair pundit, I think that Manchester City will get the results they need to win the title.
Web site - I have tried to tidy up some of the pages.
Until the next one...