Category Archives: sex

Football YES, Women NO!

As someone known for being somewhat opinionated on the subject of football, it can come as no surprise to hear that in the wake of ‘Sky Gate’ I received numerous requests to comment on the issue of females and the great game. It might shock you to discover that all such requests were declined.

The reason has nothing to do with either Richard Keys (who I always thought was the luckiest not to mention hairiest man alive) or Andy Gray (who I’ve regarded as nothing more than a cheating bastard since the 1984 FA Cup Final) but the actual subject matter. It’s not that I have an issue with female officials who as far as I have seen, have generally done a decent job, it’s the fact that as far as I am concerned, they shouldn’t even be there in the first place.

Now I know I have blogged on this subject before, but for reasons too boring to go into, I have recently been re-reading my book ‘The Geezers Guide to Football’ which for those who do not know, is a bluffers guide along the lines of ‘How to behave like a proper bloke at football’. Contrary to what certain reviewers think, it was never written as a serious examination of the male of the species but was instead, a piss take of how stupid we can be when it comes to the great game.

Of course lots has changed in the world of football in the 13 years since the book was first published but I was amazed at how much of my book still rang true with regard to football fans. That is especially true when it comes to the subject of women and with that in mind, I have included that entire section below.

To put the extract in context, it is part of a chapter which introduces the novice football fan to the different categories of supporter he can expect to encounter on a match day. Categories which include lads, sads, old gits, young gits and anoraks.

Read on…

Up to this point I have broken down the support into a number of specific types, but there is one group that has yet to be mentioned and that is women, and there is a reason for that. I have said it before, and I will say it again: women and football do not mix. As a geezer, you will spend your day in the company of other men, and therefore women who go to football are to be totally and utterly ignored. Furthermore, if you are unfortunate enough to find yourself sitting near a woman, you should never moderate your language. In fact, it is your duty to become even more colourful as she may well move, which would be a bonus. To be perfectly honest, if I had my way women wouldn’t even be allowed inside grounds, and I certainly believe that if a ground is sold out and a male of the species is locked outside, someone should go in, grab the nearest female and throw her out so that the bloke can have her seat.

I have to say at this point that I get into a lot of trouble for my views on women at football, but I’m afraid that’s too bad. I have yet to be told by any football-loving male that my opinions are contrary to theirs and that is good enough for me. And let’s face it, being a geezer is about being a bloke and doing blokey things. That’s one of the attractions. Women who watch football will, of course, argue this point until the cows come home. They will argue that they love the game as much as me, go to every game home and away and can discuss tactics with anyone who cares to listen. Unfortunately by this time I am not listening, as I simply do not care about anything a woman has to say on the subject of my obsession. However, at some point or another during your life of geezerdom you will have to defend this stance, and so I will explain the reasoning behind it once again.

Generally speaking, men live for their football. They sleep it, worship it and, if they can, they play it. When they watch the game, they go through every emotion known, but in the background there is always an element of frustration. This frustration is borne out of the fact that if they had practised harder as a kid, they could have been out there doing it while some other sad git watched them. Women cannot do that because they can never play football and that is the difference. Men love football: women like football. It really is that simple. If ever you get into an argument with a woman about football, you do not need to sink to the level of ‘you only go to look at the players legs’, but merely ask her to explain how she can possibly talk about Beckham dropping a 40-yard pass on to the feet of Owen when she could not kick a ball with any degree of accuracy over a distance of 40 inches. That will shut her right up. Alternatively, if a woman begins talking football with you, merely look at her and say, ‘Yeah, right-oh love,’ before returning to your paper and you will be unbeatable.

In any case, there are only two reasons why most women go to watch football. For the married ones, it’s the only chance they get to spend time with their old man whereas, the single ones only go to spend a few hours surrounded by men in a testosterone-fuelled frenzy. This is clearly the case; because most single females who go to football are pig ugly.

A brief mention here about women’s football. Football is, and always will be, a man’s game. It is played by men for the enjoyment of other men and it is hard and aggressive, fast and skilful. All things that women’s football isn’t. The argument that women’s football is all about grace and skill is a joke. I mean, have you ever seen any women footballers? Having studied the subject at great length, it is clear to me that women who try to play football fall into three categories: they are raving feminists and play the game because, if men do it, then they should have the right to, or they are geezer-birds. And by that I mean women who really want to be men (if they were under 11 we would call them tomboys).  Or, they are lesbians. Women’s football is crap. If it were any good people would go and watch it, but it isn’t and they don’t. And, to be honest, I doubt they ever will.

End… Please feel free to comment!

The 80’s Bloke.

I need to make something clear from the outset; I am a male….a proper heterosexual one. I love football, anything with an engine, eat meat, drink alcohol (albeit occasionally) and in the past few weeks have been called amongst other things, a flirt and a letch. Both of which I took as compliments.

But if you were expecting some kind of spirited defence of the male species or even some kind of anti-female rant, you are going to be disappointed. You see in spite of the fact that I am a ‘bloke’ in pretty much every sense of the word, I would go so far as to say that I far prefer the company of women to men.

Most of my best friends are women, the bulk of my working colleagues including my editor and my agent are women and not so long ago I was best man at the same-sex wedding of two of my bestest (female) chums which was, I have to say, a truly delightful experience. Rammed as it was, with women (albeit some of whom had little or no interest in men but each to their own).

The reason for this is that in my experience, women are a lot of fun whilst men are fairly hopeless, especially where women are concerned. And yes, I do lump myself in there with, as most of my female friends and colleagues will agree, good reason. For like most men, I have no idea how women think or work, am prone to saying the wrong thing at the very worst time and cannot for the life of me understand the fascination with either shoes, handbags or celebrity magazines.

Furthermore, as I have previously mentioned I have no concept of how much fun shopping is (for the most part, it really isn’t), have no desire to even think about why a bed needs to be covered with cushions simply because they look nice nor can I even comprehend why anyone would need to curl their eyelashes.

Oh, and since I have no uterus, I cannot possibly have any idea what it’s like to have PMT and have no real explanation as to why something so obvious is so frequently thrown at me as if it were an accusation. Don’t even get me started on the menopause or the pain of childbirth.

I could go on…. and on…. and on.

What I hear you asking, has any of this to do with the 80’s? Well on the face of it, nothing. But in truth, it has everything.

You see, to state the obvious, men and women are different. Very different. At the beginning of the 80’s, everyone knew that, accepted it and even embraced it. It was a time when real men (or ‘blokes’ as they shall henceforth be known) did manual work, smoked, drank beer and looked after their families whilst the vast majority of women once married, kept home and acted as mothers.

Yet by the end of the decade fuelled by Thatcherism, consumerism, liberalism and feminism, we were seeing the first seeds of the god-awful ‘Ladette’ culture and were just a couple of years away from the first mention of the most loathsome cult ever to infest the male race, ‘the Metrosexual.’ The final nail in the concept of masculinity which by the turn of the decade had all but ebbed away along with good manners, common courtesy, respect and most importantly of all, romance. All to be replaced with… well, nothing.

And as the 80’s ended, women everywhere suddenly found themselves wondering where all the real men had gone whilst the real men were living in fear of having their seemingly old-fashioned advances rejected. Rejection being of course, the greatest contraceptive known to man.

So it has continued, with the traditional roles of male/hunter, woman/nurturer now almost an alien concept and as a bloke, I find that very sad. I mean, what’s wrong with holding the door open for a woman or perish the thought, offering one your seat on the tube? It’s what a gentleman does yet these days, you do it at your peril. Equality, whilst an admirable idea, has a lot to answer for because in many respects, no one wins.

Thankfully, all is not lost. For there is a saviour at hand. A real man in the old fashioned sense who blokes look up to and women have come to regard as something of a sex symbol.

No not me…. Step forward the legend that is DCI Gene Hunt. The politically incorrect, foul mouthed and most definitely sexist copper who stars in the BBC TV series ‘Ashes to Ashes.’ He is as good a representation of the early 80’s male as you will possibly ever see on screen but more importantly, he is often mentioned as the ‘bit of rough women would like a tumble with.’

If true, this is a welcome sign. For whilst much of modern day society has its merits, the relationship between men and women remains slightly blurred. Middle aged men especially are still struggling to come terms with things and the fact that a fictional television character has come to be regarded with such affection by both sexes proves that deep down, those old school values have not been totally extinguished. Or to put it another way, sometimes the good old days were actually good.

The question of course, is does that kind of Alpha male have a place in modern day society. Well speaking as one myself, I would obviously hope so but I know plenty of females who would certainly go for a bit of old fashioned looking after.

But then again, back then we never thought things that deeply did we. And maybe, like proper sized Curly Wurly’s, Tiswas and Brit–Funk, that was something else that was better back in the 80’s.

Happy days indeed.

Things That Baffle Me (Shopping)

I’ve spent most of my adult life trying to understand what makes women tick and as I have stated on numerous occasions (and as anyone who knows me will happily testify) I have generally failed miserably. So much so in fact, that in recent years I have all but given up and instead, take whatever flak my ignorance earns with all the humble pie I can consume.

For the most part, adopting this life of bewilderment has turned out to be a good thing. Not least because the older and more childlike I become, the more the mystery seems to deepen and the more interesting women become. However, there are still aspects of female life that bemuse me to such an extent that I have to give them serious thought. One such thing is shopping. And I don’t mean a trip to Tesco’s or even Ikea, I mean a full-on full day clothes shop with the coven.

For years I have struggled to understand why women derive such pleasure from what to most blokes, myself included, is a loathsome activity. I’ve never been able to grasp the idea of spending hours wandering clothes shops or worked out what it is about shoes and handbags that females find so orgasmically fascinating. However, after a recent and extremely illuminating discussion with a female who best remain nameless in the way that ‘whistleblowers’ do, I now think I get it.

You see I suspect we males have been missing a fundamental truth. It’s not that we can’t understand womens fascination with shopping, it’s that they don’t want us to understand it! And the reasons for that are best summed up in three particular words.

The first is occasion. For females of all ages, a trip to the shopping mall with the girls is an event. One where giggling ensues, gossip undertaken and worlds put to rights. More importantly, it is one where men are unwelcome for the sole reason that they inhibit their discussions, behaviour or perish the thought, spending!

The second is escapism. Shopping allows women to step outside the humdrum world of everyday life and become whoever or whatever they want to be for a while. It is, in essence, the same as dressing up when they were a little girl and there is absolutely nothing wrong with that.

The third word is perhaps the most controversial and perhaps most worrying because it is deception. And I’m not talking the kind of self deception women practice when they convince themselves that they really do need, will wear and can afford those Christian Louboutin shoes when they hand over their Mastercard, I’m talking about the subversive thrill derived from deceiving the old man. Be it by hiding receipts, cutting off labels or even throwing in words such as ‘bargain’ ‘cheap’ or ‘sale.’ 

Thinking about all this has been an interesting experience. Not least because it’s made me understand that shopping is for women what sporting events are for men. And now that I’ve finally woken up to the fact that the old adage ‘what happens on X stays on X’ (insert football, stock car track, stag night, rugby tour as required) which we’ve employed for decades is also being employed by the fairer sex, I am able to look things in an entirely different light. Not least because when I step out of the door and head out with the lads, I won’t ever have to feel guilty again.

A version of this blog previously appeared on www.moanaboutmen.com

Things That Annoy Me (Part Three – Me!)

From ‘The Yob Laureate’ to names that are (or should be) unprintable on any kind of media, it’s fair to say that over the years, I have been tagged with all sorts of labels.

This is however, understandable. After all, I’m known for writing about issues that are often considered unpalatable and in a style which could best be described as abrasive. As a consequence, it hardly comes as a surprise when occasionally, someone takes exception.

That’s fine by me and to be honest, is one of the reasons why I do it. After all, the primary aim of commenting on anything has to be to provoke some kind of response or better still, kick start a debate. To that end, I don’t really care what anyone thinks about me, just as long as they think something! The old adage ‘it’s better to be talked about than not’ is most certainly true.

There is of course one exception to that because there is one person whose opinion I value above all others and that’s my own. For in recent years, I have come to the conclusion that I am quite annoying. Not least because prior to any major football tournament (or post any outbreak of football related violence) I’d pop up on the news and say, in essence ‘I told you so.’

The fact that I am still asked to do this on a regular basis proves numerous things not least the simple truths that I am usually proved right, no one in authority has ever really taken any notice of what I’ve had to say and that many journalists are basically lazy bastards. However, a couple of years ago, I realised that I was as bored of saying this as the general public almost certainly were of hearing me say it and so I took the decision to simply call a halt to doing anything media related unless it was of particular interest to me.

Taking this decision proved to be a very positive step for all kinds of reasons. The main one being that I have finally begun shedding the ‘you’re that hooligan bloke’ tag which had been dogging me for years and as a result, these days I get involved with a more varied range of work.

The problem with this is that all of a sudden, I have found myself in competition with other writers and that is extremely unnerving. After all, to compete on an equal level means that I have to assume a degree of talent and since I’ve spent most of the last 15 or so years wondering how I am getting away with it, that isn’t easy.

As a result, I tend to prevaricate, often for days on end, which is extremely annoying. Indeed, with a script to finish, I’m starting to wonder why I am writing this instead of doing that.

Which does kind of prove my point!

*Note: I am well aware that I have other habits which some people find extremely annoying. These include biting my nails, falling asleep in front of the TV, being occasionally grumpy, being insensitive, not listening properly, having a terrible memory and not being very romantic. However, as far as I am concerned, those are character traits and what make me, me. J .

Things That Annoy Me (Part Two – Women)

Since my last blog, I’ve received numerous mails supporting my thoughts on those morons who hog the middle lane on motorways as well as suggestions for future topics to write about.

Not surprisingly, the majority of those suggestions relate to the thorny subject of women which is quite handy really as that was always going to be the theme of my second rant because let’s face it, women are a bloody nightmare for the average male.

The only trouble I’ve had is where to start. Since writing my novel ‘Billy’s Log’ I’ve been in the habit of analysing pretty much everything women do which has, in the main, involved trying to work out why we males put up with them. And in most cases, I have come to the conclusion that it’s because we’ve been conditioned to believe that we are either stupid or inferior which is ironic given that they spent so long trying to gain equality with us (and that’s a whole blog right there!).

The tragedy is that it has worked. Women do things on a regular basis which when you look at them objectively, make absolutely no sense. Yet when a male dares question the logic of any of these acts, we are the ones looked at as if we are raving mad.

Cushions are a prime example. Women seem to be obsessed with them these days with six seeming to be the bare minimum required on a bed but that the hell is that all about? The only point they seem to have from a male perspective is that they make making the bed an even more tedious task, getting into bed an event and a trip to the loo in the middle of the night a positive danger!

The argument that they ‘look nice’ would stand up were it not for the fact that generally speaking, bedrooms are places where only one or two people venture which, unless the housewives of Britain are conducting guided tours around their homes when their men are at work, merely reinforces the simple truism that women and logic are two words that rarely sit comfortably together. After all, why moan that you have too much to do around the home when you are seemingly happy to make additional work for yourself for no apparent reason?

And so, as someone who is past caring, I’ve decided that rather than write one single blog about the things 50% of the population do to annoy the other 50% and possibly miss out something important in the process, I will post up occasional thoughts relating to the madness of the female species as and when they occur to me. That is after all, the logical thing to do.

So with that in mind, here’s the first: Why do we put up with women moaning about us leaving the toilet seat up when it’s equally as reasonable for us to moan about them leaving it down?

The Joy of Farting…

It might not come as too much of a shock to hear that I am not an animal lover. Indeed, I would actually go so far as to say that the only interest I have in anything four-legged relates to the potential of it ending up on a plate in front of me.

Now I realise that this might offend some people, but I simply do not see the point in pets. Dogs seem to do little but eat, shit and make demands on your time whilst cats seem to do little or nothing at all.

As for the ‘companionship’ argument, if I want to spend time with dumb animals, I can switch on the telly and watch Big Brother.

In spite of this, I have over the years, somehow ended up with various beasts living under my roof and currently share living space with two goldfish and two kittens. One of which seems hell bent on inflicting as much pain on me as is possible as the numerous scratches on my hands will testify.

The other however…. well, I have to admit that I am kind of warming to her. Not because she is cute or fluffy, but because of something she did last night. She farted.

Now I have heard plenty of dogs fart over the years and have witnessed on too many occasions to recall that ‘what the hell was that?’ face that all canines seem to be able to do. However, I have never before heard a cat fart. To be honest, the very idea of them doing it at all had never even occurred to me.

What made it all the more impressive was that she did it not once, but three times and with a nice little pause in between each squeak. She actually looked quite pleased with herself when she’d finished. It was a joy to witness.

Reflecting on this later, it struck me as quite significant that of the two kittens, it was the female that had performed. After all, for the majority of human females farting is not something to be celebrated at all. At least not within sight or sound of a male. Instead, it is a bodily function to be carried out as discreetly as possible or even, so some women would have me believe, never at all!

Well, I say discreetly… I recall an occasion in hospital when an elderly nurse was standing in front of me removing a drip needle from my arm and she not only farted but lifted a leg up to do it. Then she just carried on as if nothing had happened whilst every male within ear shot was dying with laughter.

But let’s be honest, for us males farting is a source of much humour. As a youth in a house with a mad father and four brothers, we once kept a microphone set up and a cassette player on permanent pause with the sole function of recording every fart exhausted. The subsequent C90 tape being a source of huge hilarity to us much to the disgust to my mother and poor sister. Latterly, ‘Atomic Fart’ was one of the first apps I downloaded onto my IPhone and remains one of my favoured tactics for reinforcing my child like persona to any women who might doubt it.

Furthermore, the farting scene in the movie ‘Blazing saddles’ remains one of my all time favourite movie moments closely followed by Jim Carey letting one loose in the lift in ‘Liar, Liar’.

Yet aside from cheering us up, there is another function the humble fart performs. It signifies a passage (pun intended).

After all, when a relationship arrives at the point where your partner feels comfortable enough to pass wind in your presence (and I’m not talking about her sticking your head under the covers or anything like that) you know that she’s reached that special point where she’ll be feeling safe enough with you to actually be herself. And that’s an important point in any relationship.

One my little kitten has obviously reached with me.

The Joy of Farting…

It might not come as too much of a shock to hear that I am not an animal lover. Indeed, I would actually go so far as to say that the only interest I have in anything four-legged relates to the potential of it ending up on a plate in front of me.

Now I realise that this might offend some people, but I simply do not see the point in pets. Dogs seem to do little but eat, shit and make demands on your time whilst cats seem to do little or nothing at all.

As for the ‘companionship’ argument, if I want to spend time with dumb animals, I can switch on the telly and watch Big Brother.

In spite of this, I have over the years, somehow ended up with various beasts living under my roof and currently share living space with two goldfish and two kittens. One of which seems hell bent on inflicting as much pain on me as is possible as the numerous scratches on my hands will testify.

The other however…. well, I have to admit that I am kind of warming to her. Not because she is cute or fluffy, but because of something she did last night. She farted.

Now I have heard plenty of dogs fart over the years and have witnessed on too many occasions to recall that ‘what the hell was that?’ face that all canines seem to be able to do. However, I have never before heard a cat fart. To be honest, the very idea of them doing it at all had never even occurred to me.

What made it all the more impressive was that she did it not once, but three times and with a nice little pause in between each squeak. She actually looked quite pleased with herself when she’d finished. It was a joy to witness.

Reflecting on this later, it struck me as quite significant that of the two kittens, it was the female that had performed. After all, for the majority of human females farting is not something to be celebrated at all. At least not within sight or sound of a male. Instead, it is a bodily function to be carried out as discreetly as possible or even, so some women would have me believe, never at all!

Well, I say discreetly… I recall an occasion in hospital when an elderly nurse was standing in front of me removing a drip needle from my arm and she not only farted but lifted a leg up to do it. Then she just carried on as if nothing had happened whilst every male within ear shot was dying with laughter.

But let’s be honest, for us males farting is a source of much humour. As a youth in a house with a mad father and four brothers, we once kept a microphone set up and a cassette player on permanent pause with the sole function of recording every fart exhausted. The subsequent C90 tape being a source of huge hilarity to us much to the disgust to my mother and poor sister. Latterly, ‘Atomic Fart’ was one of the first apps I downloaded onto my IPhone and remains one of my favoured tactics for reinforcing my child like persona to any women who might doubt it.

Furthermore, the farting scene in the movie ‘Blazing saddles’ remains one of my all time favourite movie moments closely followed by Jim Carey letting one loose in the lift in ‘Liar, Liar’.

Yet aside from cheering us up, there is another function the humble fart performs. It signifies a passage (pun intended).

After all, when a relationship arrives at the point where your partner feels comfortable enough to pass wind in your presence (and I’m not talking about her sticking your head under the covers or anything like that) you know that she’s reached that special point where she’ll be feeling safe enough with you to actually be herself. And that’s an important point in any relationship.

One my little kitten has obviously reached with me.

Safety First!

Whenever I am writing, there will inevitably come a point where an alarm bell rings. More often than not it will be heard once I’ve already written something and will involve a distant voice asking “do you really want to say that?” (OK I know a voice isn’t strictly speaking a bell, but if you want to be pedantic, I don’t actually hear it, it’s merely a thought that springs up from the recesses of what passes for my brain).

Now if life has taught me one thing, it’s to pay heed to warnings. After all, when a PC asks ‘do you really want to delete this file’ or a woman in mid-argument stops, folds her arms and poses the question ‘do you really want to go down that road?’ whatever decision is made is going to have consequences for someone. Usually dire ones. And so that decision, whatever it might be, should only be made after considering what those potential consequences might be and weighing up the pro’s and con’s of each.

Of course the default decision for all men is ‘no’ whilst for women, it’s yes. In my experience female’s tend to worry about consequences ‘post’ action as opposed to ‘pre’ but then again, they are devious enough to either hide whatever damage they have done or blame someone else for making them do it. Failing that, they can usually call on a man to sort things out for them. And before anyone says anything in response to that, I have lost count of the number of computers I have had to sort out for women who have deleted things even after being warned not to.

Anyway, to return to the case in point…as far as writing is concerned, I usually hear this voice when I commit something to paper that I know is either going to kick up a storm, cause controversy, offend someone or even attract personal criticism (or worse).

In the past this has included such things as my various attacks on the police (the self-serving Army of occupation), the government (cowards), the game (inept), the anti-racist movements (whoo whoo! Keep that gravy train running at all costs lads), the extreme political groups (please wake up to reality chaps), Helen Chamberlain (geezer bird) and gay footballers (for fucks sake, it’s 2010 not 1910!) and in the majority of cases, I’ve gone ahead because I have felt so strongly about something that not to say it would have detracted from the argument I’d been making and I’ll have been confident enough to back up what I’ll have written in the flesh if need be.

I say the majority of cases but in truth, I can only think of one instance where I wrote something and then deleted it. Ironically, it wasn’t in a non-fiction book at all, but in my novel, Billy’s Log. 

I won’t go into details about it here but suffice to say, it was very relevant at the time of writing and to be honest, is just as relevant today (as is the rest of the book I think). However, for some reason it didn’t sit well with me and so I pulled it but I’ve regretted that decision ever since because I should have had the courage to say what I wanted to say.

I mention all this now because I sat down at my computer this morning and began writing a blog when all of a sudden I heard ‘do you really want to say that?’ And as I read back over what I’d written, I realised that there was only one answer…..NO!

You see when it comes to the battle of the sexes, even I know that there are some skirmishes which are best avoided! Especially when one runs the very real risk of shooting oneself in the foot!!

Safety First!

Whenever I am writing, there will inevitably come a point where an alarm bell rings. More often than not it will be heard once I’ve already written something and will involve a distant voice asking “do you really want to say that?” (OK I know a voice isn’t strictly speaking a bell, but if you want to be pedantic, I don’t actually hear it, it’s merely a thought that springs up from the recesses of what passes for my brain).

Now if life has taught me one thing, it’s to pay heed to warnings. After all, when a PC asks ‘do you really want to delete this file’ or a woman in mid-argument stops, folds her arms and poses the question ‘do you really want to go down that road?’ whatever decision is made is going to have consequences for someone. Usually dire ones. And so that decision, whatever it might be, should only be made after considering what those potential consequences might be and weighing up the pro’s and con’s of each.

Of course the default decision for all men is ‘no’ whilst for women, it’s yes. In my experience female’s tend to worry about consequences ‘post’ action as opposed to ‘pre’ but then again, they are devious enough to either hide whatever damage they have done or blame someone else for making them do it. Failing that, they can usually call on a man to sort things out for them. And before anyone says anything in response to that, I have lost count of the number of computers I have had to sort out for women who have deleted things even after being warned not to.

Anyway, to return to the case in point…as far as writing is concerned, I usually hear this voice when I commit something to paper that I know is either going to kick up a storm, cause controversy, offend someone or even attract personal criticism (or worse).

In the past this has included such things as my various attacks on the police (the self-serving Army of occupation), the government (cowards), the game (inept), the anti-racist movements (whoo whoo! Keep that gravy train running at all costs lads), the extreme political groups (please wake up to reality chaps), Helen Chamberlain (geezer bird) and gay footballers (for fucks sake, it’s 2010 not 1910!) and in the majority of cases, I’ve gone ahead because I have felt so strongly about something that not to say it would have detracted from the argument I’d been making and I’ll have been confident enough to back up what I’ll have written in the flesh if need be.

I say the majority of cases but in truth, I can only think of one instance where I wrote something and then deleted it. Ironically, it wasn’t in a non-fiction book at all, but in my novel, Billy’s Log. 

I won’t go into details about it here but suffice to say, it was very relevant at the time of writing and to be honest, is just as relevant today (as is the rest of the book I think). However, for some reason it didn’t sit well with me and so I pulled it but I’ve regretted that decision ever since because I should have had the courage to say what I wanted to say.

I mention all this now because I sat down at my computer this morning and began writing a blog when all of a sudden I heard ‘do you really want to say that?’ And as I read back over what I’d written, I realised that there was only one answer…..NO!

You see when it comes to the battle of the sexes, even I know that there are some skirmishes which are best avoided! Especially when one runs the very real risk of shooting oneself in the foot!!

On the road…

I am, by my own admission, a petrol head. I don’t care what it is, car, bike or boat, if it has an engine, I’m there.

Two stroke, four stroke, diesel, rotary, even gas turbine… I don’t care. I love them all equally and thanks to the delights of my engineering background, am more than capable of pissing about with any of them for hours.

Now being a petrol head, it stands to reason that I have a love of motorsport and since I was a nipper, there has been one particular discipline that has captured my heart. I’ve watched it, raced it, I even put it on TV and to this day, I cannot get enough of it. I speak of the sport of Formula One Stock Car racing.

Known as ‘the working mans motorsport’ on account of its inner-city roots, it is finally, after years of prodding by hundreds if not thousands of people, about to come to the BBC. I won’t say anything more, just check this out.  Must watch TV

I cannot wait. Really, I can’t. And in case you were wondering, yes, that really is my old stock car in the picture. Happy days.

Of course being a petrol head and a bloke, some people assume that I must have certain opinions relating to women drivers but this is not the case. Indeed, I can honestly say that most of the women I know are excellent behind the wheel. I certainly feel safer in their passenger seats than I do with most of men I’ve had the misfortune to be driven by recently

That said, I do have quite firmly entrenched opinions about cars. Or to be more specific, what cars men should or should not drive. And these are based not on what’s under the bonnet or even how fast they go, but on what they look like.

As far as I’m concerned, men should drive cars that are big and butch. Aston Martin, Bentley, Jaguar, big Mercedes, BMW’s or Audi saloons fit the bill perfectly. Personally, I consider anyone who drives a Chrysler 300 to have both testicles firmly in place because they look like they actually run on testosterone.

Conversely, whilst it would be reasonable to assume that given their performance, I would be ok with men who drive sports cars, this is not the case. If I see a male driving a Porsche for example, one of two things springs to mind; mid-life crisis or gay. Similarly, I consider convertibles to be the preserve of women. Period. The only exception being if they are old and American.

On the subject of ‘non-blokey’ cars, any male who drives anything with either ‘hybrid’ or ‘people carrier’ in the description clearly falls under the tag of ‘new man’ (for which read ‘sad man’) and should be ashamed of themselves. Anyone without ovaries who drives a Smart car clearly has problems.

4×4’s are another vehicle I have issues with. Both BMW and Mercedes versions have always had something ‘girlie’ about them whilst the same thing has also begun to infect the Range Rover. Once the ultimate man’s vehicle, I seem to see so many of them being driven by blondes these days that there’s no way they can be considered masculine any more. As for the large pickups that have begun to infest our roads, whilst they undoubtedly have their merits and are obviously de rigour in the US of A, here in the UK they do have certain connotations associated with them. And who wants that?

The irony is of course, that I drive none of the above. For whilst my two previous cars were old Jaguar XJ’s (possibly the all time classic English lads motor) these days I drive a VW Golf. Not exactly blokey I’ll admit but I do love it to bits.

Then again, I’m confident enough in my sexuality to drive what I like. And besides, as far as I’m concerned, the ultimate male vehicle doesn’t have four wheels at all. Just the two.