Saturday, 6 October 2007

Whatever Next?

Whatever next, Joe Cole on stilts?
By Russell Brand

I'm in Tuscany. I've been sent here by my publishers to finish my autobiography. Usually, this column is the only writing obligation I have to fulfil and is brattishly indulged, today it must vie with literary siblings and is being produced during a hiatus of the solipsistic, caffeinated torrent that has consumed my every waking hour. Goethe wrote here, I am informed, and Auden too, so expectations are justifiably high and this voluptuous, rolling land ought be sufficient muse for any man.

I went into town on Wednesday night to watch Chelsea vs Valencia, initially to gloat but as usual when abroad, was seduced by patriotism. My hopes that post Mourinho Chelsea would fall apart looked likely to be fulfilled before a ball had been kicked, with John Terry in his see-through mask (there's a baffling concept, see-through masks. What's next? Cuddley daggers?) and Petr Cech in his stupid bonnet, they look like they're disintegrating as individuals let alone as a team. For future matches I want Joe Cole to be on stilts and Didier Drogba to wear fake boobies. Let Chelsea field a team of prosthetically enhanced oddities, it'll be good for morale.

After David Villa's opener I felt the first nationalistic twinge, the Italians that were watching were hardly vociferous, they indifferently sipped beer, but I took their silent boozing to be a slur upon Her Majesty and all her fleets and became enraged. "How dare you!" I thought, after everything we've done for you. I began to crave a Chelsea revival, not in a profound way, just in a "I drew them in a sweepstake at work" way. Then thanks to the skill and persistence of Drogba and Joe Cole, or Johkohl as he's known on Italian telly, Britannia triumphed.

Were Chelsea more flamboyant under Avram Grant? It seems ridiculous that they could be, using the judge-a-book-by-its-cover method, Mourinho has the appearance of a Latino, gigolo assassin, Grant looks like Herman Munster's butler. There's a word that oughtn't be bandied about so profligately, butler. Butler means a devoted, Woodhousian gentleman's gentleman. The lunatic who bears that title and has come as part of the package with this Tuscan villa would have seen Bertie Wooster starved and raped within an hour of his employment.

I know that complaining about the quality of your butler is a lament unlikely to elicit much sympathy outside of Kensington but this fella, Sam, could no more butter me the perfect crumpet than take flight over the olive groves that surround me.

It was Sam who took us to the bar where we, me and my mate Nik (who's also my agent here to force me to write the booky wook), watched Wednesday's match and let me complain about the coffee and the light reflecting off the TV screen before telling me on the way home that the premises were run by the Mafia. I suppose I should be grateful he didn't wait till my funeral before mentioning it to my weeping mother.

Had I been aware that I was drinking in the Café Cosa Nostra I might not have been so cheeky with the waitresses, nor would I have sung the national anthem at the final whistle. The problem may be due to linguistic difficulties rather than incompetence - he did yesterday speak the sentence "Marijuana Michaelangelo my brother Italy." I've been thinking about it ever since and am no closer to unravelling its mysteries.

What could it mean? It's almost entirely made of nouns, there's not a verb to be had. Could it mean that marijuana influenced the sculpture of Michealangelo and in turn inspired Sam and his brother to come to Italy? Whatever he said, it's better than my Italian, all I can say is "grazi" I say it in different accents to deal with every situation. I just hope that I can intone "grazi" in such a charming fashion that I can avoid being murdered in the plaza by a disgruntled Godfather.

Guardian column

1 comment:

Rooster said...

Drogba with fake boobies. lol.
Brilliand article. WD


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