Some things just never change, hey?

2011-01-05 00:00

NEW Year, same old problems.

For starters, as is wont at this time of year, we should probably get the tedious resolutions out the way.

Having been perched in the foot of the glorious Table Mountain for the last week, I have renewed my determination to steer well clear of the infamous “gatsby’’, for fear that I may resemble a Jabulani ball by the time I return to Sleepy Hollow.

For those unfamiliar with the Cape’s most formidable culinary offering, it is a ‘’Quagga” on happy juice. It houses all things most un-vegetarian, but it somehow finds its way to your heart(burn) every time you are in this part of the world.

It may share its name with a great story, but this particular “gatsby’’ is an equally epic adventure in its own right.

So, briefly put, I shall exercise (wait for it) my right to eat more sensibly, in a bid to meet the Police Chief’s demanding standards for his staff. Less ‘hmm’ and more ‘oomph’, I say.

But enough on that, because I was also planning to lay off poor Liverpool supporters this year.

And then I looked at the fixture list.

Who else would they have this weekend but Manchester United in the last competition they have a realistic chance of winning, the sweet FA Cup.

How can I not offer my penny’s worth of waffle on Roy Hodgson’s chances against Sir Alex?

To be honest, I am surprised he is still in a job.

However, I am not surprised that his predecessor Rafa Benitez is back on the unemployment list. It was like a salad to my system when I heard that Inter Milan thought he could replace Jose Mourinho.

And so it has come to pass that Benitez made such a fine mess of the European champions that he was gone before his door had his name on it.

What’s really scary is that he will now be linked with whatever job comes up in the managerial stakes for the next few months.

Just you watch.

It amazes me that managers are so employable. They are like blerrie politicians. The bigger the stuff-up, the better the next job.

“Let’s see how spectacularly you can mess this up, chief.”

“Sure, give me two months.”

And cue the madness.

I am ranting here, but bear with me. It’s early in the year, and the words of an illegal flag merchandiser are stil ringing in my ears.

The chap I refer to stumbled upon me on the way to yesterday’s play at Newlands.

Somewhere between the last gatsby and the latest, I suppose.

The fledgling entrepreneur, who looked suspiciously new in town to my eyes, was going on about the consignment of flags that had been confisicated from him on the morning of the first day.

“They are busy asking me for a permit. Permit, permit, can you not see the flag in my hand?”

He had skipped the second day, and then told me he had a haircut and donned a new shirt.

“You have to be one step ahead, boss. We all need to eat.”

Fair enough, but it takes me back to my point about those bumbling managers.

Even in South Africa.

Some names are so familiar, they have half the league on their list of references — and most with not so glowing remarks!

And, much like the flag flogger, they are always back in the market for the next dance with destiny.

They simply re-invent themselves, be it as cup specialists, relegation rescuers or — when they are really desperate — planners for the future.

And you know what, club owners ignore their previously pathetic performances and give them a massive contract.

To prove my point, the cheeky flag-man almost persuaded me to part with my cents, as my senses deserted me.

“R30, my brother.”

I was just about to buy one — goodness knows why — when I realised that it was about the same price as a gatsby.

We all have priorities, you know.

Happy New Year, fellow ‘experts’.

And if you support that club that was big in the 80s, brace yourself. It looks like it’s gonna be a long, long year.

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