I’ve been on the verge of filing a petition with the Federal Railroad Administration for the abandonment of this blog.1 The property is in sad shape, needs extensive maintenance work, track and signal upgrades. Bridges need to be replaces, not to mention the new ones that need to be built.
All in the metaphorical sense, of course. But still just as real. After all, every model railroad layout is a real railroad in the mind its creator.
And I suppose it’s the state of my mind lately that I’ve been giving serious thought to standing down and packing it in. Leaving this online sadness diary, like an abandoned railroad2 to the elements of nature. Metaphorically speaking, as I said.
It’s been, after all, a horrible November.
But that is no excuse of course, I should show some bottle and press on through. I offer that up merely to partially explain where my mind is at. My heart has just not been in it.
So these days, it’s been more a matter of a lot of input, but very little output. Input as in watching quite bit of new anime, watching a descending series of football matches, and reading every broadsheet I could lay eyes on. So much input and ideas and lot of things to say about it all. But nothing being said.
I’ve wondered at times if I’ve lost my interest or my touch, or both? By this time last year, I’d already written and dissected the Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona. THIS year, it snuck up on me all of a sudden and I barely watched any of it, let alone written a single word about. Actually, now that think of it, last year I wrote about Jeff Gordon’s retirement, not the Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona. But my point is still valid.
But to be honest, I seriously considered abandonment. Chucking this whole thing, selling the GP30’s for scrap and donating the cabooses to a museum, if they would have them.
Unfortunately for y’all, I’m probably going to give it another go.
Unfortunately for me, that means I actually have to pick up my tools and do some work.
Crvena Zvezda, Red Star Belgrade for those of you who can’t read Serbian even when it’s not written in the Cyrillic alphabet, are top of the Serbian Super Liga table with 63 points as they get ready resume the season after the Winter Break. They’ve pretty much lapped the field in the first 22 games. They’re undefeated at 20-2-0 and have a +50 goal differential scoring 65 and conceding only 15. The second place team, FK Čukarički Stankom have a mere 37 points and +5 goal differential.
Their main rival in the Super Liga, Partizan Belgrade, languishes in 4th place at the moment, 26 points off the pace.
Crvena Zvezda resumes play on 2/19 at home against 11th place Metalac GM. I’m figuring Red Star will continue rumbling down their path to continued utter domination. No one can pick up enough points to catch Red Star.
But their dominance had been duly noted, as Liverpool have swooped in to grab their young 19 year old midfielder, Marko Grujić, for a €7m transfer fee. Pool is loaning him back to Red Star for the rest of the season. But like a lot of Red Star fans, and especially Marko’s dad, I think they should leave him be, or at the very least keep him at Red Star for a couple more years on loan to gain more experience.
Where to start…..where to start with this Happy Action Funtime® of a season. Where. To. START!!?
It was supposed to turn out so well. It was supposed to be a repeat. Every pundit except for pundits who were die-hard ArseAnal, ManU(re) and Citeh fans picked Chelsea to repeat as Champions.
We had the best coach in the known universe3. Some of the best players on the planet and the EPL Player of The Year.
It was to be a march to the top. Not the walk in the park last year was….but at the end of the day, the end of the season, Chelsea would holding the trophy high again.
It was supposed to be the start of a Dynasty. A dynasty that Jose Mourinho would build and lead for a long time. A Dynasty that would place him in the legacy/longevity pantheon of Sir Alex Ferguson.
So why the fuck are we mired in 13th in table? Only 1 win and 4 draws in the past five matches!
The train derailed as it arrived at the first station, a 2-2 draw to Swansea at The Bridge, with Jose’s petulant furor at the medical staff unfortunately setting the tone for the rest of the season. My Blues followed that up with a clown car performance up at The Etihad, losing 3-0, deservedly, to Man City.
It went on and on, spiraling downward to the bitter edges of the Relegation Zone. Unthinkable! But more than real, psychedelically real, and in a bad way.
In December, I lined the entire squad up against the wall outside the entrance to the Cobham Training Ground and began to fire bullets at them, metaphorically of course, and just as I was going to pop another cap in Diego Costa’s ass for good measure, the news came thundering down that Jose Mourinho had been fired and sent on an all-expenses paid gardening leave to Do One Island somewhere in the middle of the Black Sea.4
In my view, the entire squad with the exception of Willian, Zouma, and Begovic should have been sent on a one way tour to You’re Fired, New Jersey USA! USA!! USA!!! with no expenses paid.
But just as surely as people die when they are killed, it’s always easier5 to fire the manager.
So the Ol’ Reliable Guus Hiddink has been brought back to lead the charge on an interim basis until The Fat Spanish Waiter gets HIS recall.
And though the results have improved, and the lads seem to have a little more of a spring in their step, it’s more like as if the club is patting us fans on the back and apologizing, sort of.
“Sorry about the season mate….” Eden Hazard says, and then he slips a wad of something in my pocket, saying, “Here….go have yourself a drink.”
Well…that’s all well and good I suppose. Apologizing when it’s sincere and owning up to things makes one a top guy. But I wonder if he really means it. Hazard, like the scientists used to do back in the day, sat down and even penned an apology to Jose Mourinho….but he stopped short of copping to childish petulance.
So this has been our season so far. Funny and ha ha…..the laughing stock of the Premier League. If Tommy Cooper were alive, I’m sure he’d make our season into a routine. A routine, as in “Watch me pull Chelsea’s season out of hat!!” And out the hat comes fez after fez after fez with an occasional rabbit, all attached, and seemingly endless.
Well I don’t know about you, but right now I need a little drink.
I have some beer in the fridge, but why have some of that when I can have a drink on Chelsea FC, courtesy of Eden Hazard?
So I march down to my regular and order a pint of the usual.
Then I reach into my pocket to retrieve the wad that the apologetic Eden Hazard himself placed there so I can pay.
And guess what.
It was a fookin’ tea bag!!
- And yes, I know that convincing them that a metaphorical imaginary railroad does not an actual railroad make might be an obvious stumbling block….not to mention the utter lack of economic value to the community it serves….
- or railroad museum…
- Arguably, mind.
- Geography Pedants….ASSEMBLE!!
- Less troublesome…