Plucking hell

plucking-a-chicken

I wrote the the other day about some great jobs I’ve had and the cushiest number in the Met Police. But it got me thinking about some of the worst jobs I’ve had to endure. I had a few lulus working at the bakery during school holidays. One job involved standing by this conveyor belt for a 12 hour shift loading freshly baked loaves hot from the oven onto trollies. The problem was that you were completely alone facing a wall and at head height about 4 feet away hung a large clock which was impossible to ignore. There was nothing to distract you from its torturous gaze. I can tell you that those shifts felt 18 hours long.

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6 nations

Well an interesting day in the 6 Nations yesterday. After trouncing Italy, Wales roll on towards a possible Grand Slam. It’s not going to happen again is it? That match again Ireland will be tough, especially because the Irish seem to have found their form following up their storming second half against France with a comprehensive win against Scotland yesterday. The Scots are looking poor this year – they found a try at least yesterday but it could be a lonely soul in the season. I blame their shirts. Ever since they’ve been wearing these barbeque shirts, they’ve played like king prawns –

The Irish one is as bad – a real horror of pea and avocado greens:

Anyway the key point of this posting is to write favourably about England’s performance away to France yesterday. Thankfully the team have stopped Steve McClaren  from doing the half-time team talk and they turned in a second half effort to match the first half performance. If only they’d done the same thing against Wales who they absolutely pasted in that first 40 minutes, it would be they looking at a potential Grand Slam now. Ah well.

It’s not been a classic tournament but it’s turning into a good 6 Nations with 4 of the teams aiming and fully capable of winning it. I can’t wait for the next round now.

pp

only croatia again

Don’t know if you’ve heard the World Cup qualifying draw as yet but England have only gone and drawn Croatia again as the no 1 seed in our group, alongside Ukraine, Belarus, Kazakhstan and the mighty Andorra. As it’s a 6 team group we even get a chance to qualify as one of the best runners-up. That’s alright. With a proper manager in control, we should reverse the results against Croatia and qualify relatively easily this time. He says…

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from russia with a loss

Well that was a desperately disappointing set of results tonight. England played well for 70 minutes, really well, but 5 minutes of poor defending cost them the match. It was a game that should have been safe after Rooney scored a belting first goal. Those misses by Gerrard and Richards looked more horrible each time they were replayed. I think everyone agrees it was a clumsy tackle by Rooney that led to the penalty but it was clearly outside the area. What was the point in sticking Lescott in there as a third central defender and expecting Joe Cole/Rooney to cover at left back given how well the Russians played against regular full backs in the second half at Wembley? And is that now the end of Robinson’s time in goal? Is there any hope of Russia dropping points against a disinterested Israel? I wouldn’t bet the house on it. The only saving grace in all this is that McQuiff Moscow now.

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don’t cry for argentina, let’s welcome them

I don’t know a lot about the politics of world rugby (even though I was once hauled before the IRB at the end of RWC ’99 – you’ll just have to find the earlier posting) but I do know that Argentina have been a bloody revelation. It would seem that the Tri-Nations don’t want them in their tournament and they’re not exactly well-positioned to compete regularly with Japan and the Pacific Is teams. And playing against the USA and Canada wouldn’t exactly light their fire as an annual competition. So, is it just me but why shouldn’t we invite them to join the 6 Nations?

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rugby world cup; upset on the cards?

Great result for England last night and today it’s Wales’ and Scotland’s turns to qualify for the QF stages. Come on you Celts. After an indifferent start by the Home nations (make that crap in England’s case), the tournament is just brewing up nicely now. The only blemish is the form of Ireland who really do look out of sorts. Something’s not right in that camp. The match against Argentina will be really tough. If all clicks they could do it but all their key players have got to hit top from simultaneously you feel. But come on you Greens. Continue reading

thank goodness for will greenwood

Well all those misgivings about facing S Africa prove to be accurate. Did you watch England’s humiliating performance last night losing 36-0 to the Boks? When was the last time a significant test team (and we are World Champions after all) failed to score a single point? We never even looked like scoring one to be honest. What a shambles. Is it just me but surely the game’s up for Farrell – did he do anything but hoof it up the pitch, conceding possession and imediately handing the initiative away? At scrum half Perry inept performance was made even starker by the brilliance of Du Preez – what a game he had. And how sad to see the only English player playing with any heart and commitment, Robinson, end the game (and probably his career) bloodied and with a torn hamstring. The only positive on the night? Surely the touchline commentary from Will Greenwood – refreshingly different, funny, insightful and pointed. An absolute natural. We’ve found one new star at least. Well done ITV for getting their team selection right. Brian Ashton to note please.

pp