Get a Grip

The media seem to have finally woken up to the fact that snow has fallen in the UK. This couldn’t be related to the fact 3 flakes have fallen in London overnight could it?

Well today was the day

a) Much of England struggled to cope with snow

b) FIFA named the hosts of the 2018 ands 2022 Football World Cup Finals. England lost out to Russia in the competition for the 2018 tournament. Qatar won the rights to host the 2022 tournament. England were not in the running for that as the 2022 tournament would not be held in Europe.


Reading the newspaper websites this morning, they went on at length at how the South East struggled yesterday with the light dusting of snow down here and in more than one instance made no mention of the North East or Scotland which has several feet of snow and has been like this for a week.

It is a perennial feature of the media in the UK, whether written, radio or TV that unless it happens in the South East, it doesn’t exist. This applies to anything, not just the weather.

Gatwick Airport, some 30 miles south of London is closed until at least 6 am on Friday morning. It has been shut since Tuesday night. Its amazing that Newcastle airport where there has been far more snow has been open almost continuously, but less snow & warmer weather and Gatwick has to be closed completely. I do know that Gatwick area does get more snow than over this way, but even so, its laughable the airport is closed for days at a time. I’m sure airports in Scandinavia or Canada manage to open in the snow.

The media are reporting that up to 40% of people did not get to work today. I appreciate that a lot of people will have worked from home, as I have. (I took my laptop home last night just in case). i wonder how many people, who knew they would get paid anyway simply did not make any effort to go to work, but did manage to get out to the nearest shopping centre to do some Christmas shopping? Me, cynical? Never!



The outpouring of bile on the internet from some of the narrow minded xenophobic English people serves only to highlight why we are not the most popular race. There is an arrogance that we almost have the right to host the tournament.

shut up blatter go lose some weight you fat git that world cup should have been ours

russia have the staduims too far apart, stupid visa rules, racist fans, staduims not even built, well too expensive to get there
lots more reasons….

The latter post seems to ignore the fact that:

a) We have equally stupid visa rules for non EU citizens wanting to come here

b) We have racist fans -this was posted by a Chelsea fan who seems to forget that when Paul Canonville scored for Chelsea the Chelsea fans refused to celebrate as he was black.

to quote from an extract in the Daily Mail of his autobiography

When he climbed from the bench to warm up, Chelsea supporters screamed: ‘Sit down you black c***’, ‘You f***ing w*g, f*** off’. Then they started to chant: ‘We don’t want the n****r, we don’t want the n****r, la la la la’. A banana landed near his feet.

‘I felt physically sick,’ recalls Canoville.

…’This went on for two-and-a-half years. Even when I scored it was like: Nah, it’s still 0-0, the n****r scored, it doesn’t count. You’re going, “What did I hear?” I didn’t even go home and tell anybody what was going on

Racism in English Football 

We also still have a hooligan problem as witnessed last night after the Birmingham v Aston Villa League Cup tie. FA-probe-Birmingham-v-Aston-Villa-violence.html

c) Expense – it is as expensive for Russians to get to England as it is for English to get to Russia

d) Stadiums – it is part of FIFA aim that there is a positive legacy left in a host country. So Russia getting lots of new stadia will fulfil this better than England who would have built very few stadia

At the end of the day, it would have been great to see the tournament held again in England, but the fact its not going to be there is a minor disappointment in the great scheme of things.


As I said above, I have been working from home today. There seemed little point in struggling into the office when I could do everything at home. The down side for me is that I have had to pay for heating and lighting to be on in my home all day. Obviously if I had gone to work I would have saved those costs. No cycling for me today. One look at the street outside would explain why I have not ventured out, never mind freezing temperatures.

I would like to get out on my bike and get some miles in. If this weather is going to remain, then I am going to have to consider getting the turbo trainer out and riding in the house. That does not fill me with excitement. Riding a turbo trainer is not the most exciting prospect.

This time of year is rather quiet on the cycling front. apart from cyclo-cross racing, there is little competitive riding going on. Road cycling will start to crank up in the new year as teams get away to warmer climates for training camps and then early season racing.



About spen666

I'm a 40 something football fan and cyclist. I've been a football fanatic most of my life and have completed the 92 football league & premier league grounds Added to this numerous non league grounds, a number abroad and you start to get the picture. I took up cycling in around 2000. Although my father was a former World Vets Champion, I got into cycling accompanying my son to ride in London. This was followed by my commuting to work each day into Central London. Then doing some Sunday rides, then some audax events ( and then a week's cycling holiday in France with a friend. From there, I got more and more into cycling and in 2009 completed LEJoG and in 2010 rode in the USA with the Police Unity Tour. I completed blogs for those events at and Feel free to read them and learn more about me. I live alone which suits me as it gives me time at weekends to pursue my interests of cycling and football. (Well what did you expect me to say? That I'm sad at being single?) I'm currently looking for my next challenge. Any suggestions gratefully received.
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1 Response to Get a Grip

  1. Tom says:

    Turbo training – do a video recording of you cycling to work, put it on a memory stick and then onto a DVD. Play the DVD and have the turbo trainer infront of the tv. It’s better than nothing…

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