I sat at the traffic lights, enveloped from the chaotic London streets by the sheer luxury of my Cool Volare Blue Fiat 500. With one hand gripping the vintage steering wheel and the other clasping the stylish pool ball gear knob, I tilted my head back, allowing the air conditioning (as standard) to cascade over the sheer flourish of my magnificent mane. I turned up the volume on my Bose stereo system.
‘Everybody sing, everybody dance. Lose yourself in wild romance. We’re going to party, Karamu, fiesta, forever. Come on and sing along!’
I smiled gently, welcomed the vibes and revved on the gas pedal. Christ, that TwinAir 0.9 Turbo engine purred like a slag in a tadger factory. I looked up and out of the sleek, yet practical, SkyDome glass roof. I had just returned from a difficult pre-season tour of New Zealand, but today was a beautiful new day, and I was feeling great.
It was at this precise moment that a podgy, middle-aged face suddenly appeared in my eye-line. It was a man. A sweat-infused disgrace of a man that was eyeballing me through the windscreen.
“Hahahaha!” he slurred, bits of sauce-splattered sausage plait tumbling from his wretched mouth and onto his shirt. His top. His football top. His West Ham United top.
“It’s you! You’re gahn, son. You’re out of ‘ere! ‘Ope you cleaned out your locker, fat chops, cos you’re facking gahn!”
‘Feel it in your heart. And feel it in your soul. Let the music take control.’
I turned the volume down. This wasn’t the time for you, Lionel.
What’s this about the internet?
The beast continued. “David Gold said so on the internet, you slag. Terry from the shop just told me. On that facking… Twitter shite, innit. You’re facking toast, son. Get aaaaht of my club, you ‘orrible ‘oofing cant.’
I turned off the engine, removed my bandana and placed it gently on the passenger seat. I stepped out of the car.
“I have no idea of what you speak of, my friend, but nobody drops sausage plait on my flawless bonnet,” I whispered menacingly, before lifting the fat mess high into the bright July sky, and supplexing him into a lime-green Kia Picanto in the next lane.
As he lay broken and squished on the ground like pink shite, I dusted myself down, peered into the window of the Picanto and smirked at the quivering driver.
“I’ve just added a few hundred quid to the value of this shit-heap, pal,” I quipped, before giving him a wink and slinking back into my car. A car that is designed with one thing in mind: having fun while driving.
Time to investigate
I felt like James f*cking Bond. As I drove off, however, I began to wonder what exactly my destroyed botherer was talking about.
On the internet?
Saying I was gone?
I decided I needed to investigate. And fast.
After stopping off at Lush and picking up some Volcano Foot Mask, I arrived at my local library and headed straight for the front desk.
“Get me the Twitter, and get me it now.”
An offensively plain secretary with a lazy eye looked up at me over her unironically-massive spectacles.
“Someone’s talking muck about me on some contraption or something called the Twitter, and I ain’t down with that shit. You feel me?”
“Twitter, Sir. Do you know what Twitter is?”
“What you call me?”
“Nothing, sir. Do you… do you know what it is?”
“Do you know how many Manager of the Month awards I have, woman?”
The perils of social networking…
The altercation carried on for a further two minutes, culminating in me taking my shirt off and encouraging the receptionist to take a look at “the last thing of beauty your amblyopia-encrusted peepers are ever going to see”.
Thankfully, she calmed me down with a Cadbury’s Fudge and explained that Twitter was some sort of online social networking service.
“Think of it as microblogging,” she said, taking me by the hand and leading me to an empty computer station.
“Users are able to both send and read 140-character text messages. These messages are called ‘Tweets’.”
“Haha,” I replied. “Remember Tweety? That little yellow bird? He was ace. He mugged that lisping moggy off all over the f*cking shop. He made him look like a right f*cking bellend every single time. Hahahaha! Sufferin’ succotash!”
Ricky Gervais is not God
After making me some hot milk, the kindly receptionist took me on a whistle-stop tour of the vast galaxy of online social media in all of its guises. What an incredible world we live in. In a matter of seconds I can scroll down my internet word document and read everything from footballers talking about God to Ricky Gervais acting like HE IS God. I should confess at this time that it was actually the receptionist that delivered this devastating critique. I didn’t get the gag, but I laughed along anyway, adding: “Yeah. He somehow managed to make a show about a dwarf that wasn’t funny. WHAT’S THAT ABOUT??!”
As we delved deeper, she was able to pinpoint the issue the begat this whole adventure. It seems that some eel-gargling clod had sent a twitter message to West Ham co-owner David Gold, and implored him to fire me. Upon receipt of this, Mr Gold clicked a computer button that at once heralded his complete approval of such a request.
I was crushed. Betraying me was one thing, but to do it on a platform I know nothing about? That was the real kick in the minge. It was akin to talking about my weight in front of me, but in a foreign tongue. And I just bloody know those African lads at the club are doing that all the time.
I drove straight to the training ground, the Fiat 500 delivering all the power I needed, whilst retaining a responsive and utterly immersive handling experience, and marched right into Gold’s office.
“You owe me an explanation, Mr Tit-Peddler. And it better be good, because I’ve got a can of Lynx Cool Metal and a Zippo in my rucksack and, so help me God, I’ll burn this place to the ground.”
Thankfully, it very quickly transpired that he did indeed have an explanation. It seems he had just got off a 33-hour flight and, upon having a casual ‘surf’ on his internet telephone, accidentally endorsed the fan’s request under the thick, immobilising fog of jet lag.
Stress drained from my body in an instant. I punched the air with delight. At 33 hours he must have been flying to the f*cking moon, but that wasn’t my concern.
“Big Sam is here to stay, then? That’s what I think you’re saying, m’lud?”
“You like cake don’t you, son?” he replied, after a surprising amount of seconds of silence.
“Does Tulisa like a toot?” I retorted with topical zeal.
“I don’t know. But what I do know is there’s cake in my glove compartment. Lemon drizzle. The car isn’t locked. Go get yourself some of that delicious cake, honey.”
And with that, I was off.
The dangers of modern technology
It’s an ever-changing world we inhabit. Modern technology has brought all corners of the globe closer together, whilst simultaneously dragging us further away from our fellow man. An innocuous lack of online judgement can suddenly become front-page news in a matter of hours. It’s up to us to understand this technology and the immense capacity to engage and learn it affords us, and appreciate the responsibility that tags along as an unavoidable by-product.
And what about Big Sam, I hear you ask? Well, I’ve been under pressure before, and no doubt I’ll be under pressure again. But as long as I’ve got a mind as sharp as He-Man’s sword, and the cunning guile of anyone who was on the telly in the 1970s, I’ll always remain two steps ahead of the game.
In the meantime, you’ll have to forgive me, but I’ve got some road to drive. And I’ll do it in a car that has the performance, the attitude and the looks that can take me where I want to go.
And if it stalls, f*ck it. It’s only a matter of time before that West Brom job is up for grabs again anyway.