Wayne Rooney's foot and other English obsessions

Trip Start Jun 09, 2005
Trip End ??? ??, 2006

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Flag of United Kingdom  ,
Friday, June 9, 2006

Who is Wayne Rooney you ask? Well, I may also have asked this same question 12 months ago, but I now know so many intimate details of Wayne Rooney's life thanks to the English tabloids, that I can't ever remember a time in my life that I did not know who 'spud head' is, as Mick likes to call him. For those of you who don't know the answer, Wayne Rooney is a member of the English football, who injured his Metatarsal bone a few weeks ago, and who's every effort to recover in time to play in the World Cup has been the topic of many, many discussions in England. One of the budget airlines here gave away 50,000 free trips when it was confirmed that Spudhead would make a much anticipated appearance in the World Cup.

I will fess up to knowing the names of more English Football wives, than I do members of the Australian football (yes, I am now used to calling it 'football', not 'soccer', as for some reason this seems to mortally offend people). I know, I know - how sad am I? If I so choose to read the papers, I could tell you where they have been shopping, what they are wearing today, who they sat next to at dinner, who they are (or are not) talking to and how many bags of clothes they took to Germany. It made headlines when the English team was told they could not wear their wedding rings while playing. Who F...ing cares?

I have NEVER seen anything like England's obsession with World Cup football. There are St George flags on everything you could possibly think of: shirts, cars, buses, g-strings, etc. etc. There is a new line of world cup sandwiches in the store, and you can even get football shaped coke bottles. Our work has set up a big screen in our boardroom, so we can all watch England play at work. Great! Love seeing the poms get worked over! It is completely out of control. Someone told me, that really, it wasn't about the football at all, but another chance for the English to beat the Germans???????? And yet for all the hysteria, they are sooo critical of their team. The moment they make one mistake, everyone starts moaning and groaning about what happened last world cup, and the one before that, and the one before that, and how rubbish the team is, even though they haven't lost a game yet. No wonder the poor buggers never win the cup.

The other English obsession is of course, the bloody weather. No matter how hard I try, I cannot get through a day here without having to talk about the weather. For the last 9 months everyone has been complaining about how cold it is. Then within the space of a week, everyone was whinging about how hot it was. I am SOO over it. There must be something better to talk about, surely. But when I mention this rather painful obsession to English people, they tell me that it is the English way to moan about the weather, and I should just except it an join in. NEVER. And here I am writing about. Bastards, they've got me!

Summer has been pretty funny to watch though - the fake tan bottles come out, and the majority of the population is a rather eery shade of bright, streaky orange. Either that or they are bright red, usually in pretty unflattering places. The shirts are stripped off (for the guys, although the girls make a good go of it too) to reveal beer bellies in all their glory, the short skirts are out in force, and there is not a scrap of empty space in London that hasn't been turned into a beer garden. It was 28 degrees the other day, and the headlines read 'heatwave - London swelters'. Muppets!

As usual, there are various photos from my wanderings attached. Hope you enjoy!

Gee, it's hot today, innitt?
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