There was a guy in Starbucks today for a brief moment of about ten to fifteen minutes or so this afternoon. Now, a guy in Starbucks is of course a pretty common occurrence - I am one of these myself. Albeit an incredible and amazing one at that, who really should be paid to write in there as it raises the level of awesomeness. But what can I do? The fella in question was in his fifties, bald - virtually, badly dressed and reeking of urine. In simple terms, he was one of the piss-heads who hangs around the corner, who for some reason that made no sense to anyone, decided to pop in for a latte, which just shows that beggars can in fact be choosers.
He was pretty loud, almost annoying to the point that perhaps two or three years ago I may well have snapped and told him to shut up, but, in truth, he was pretty harmless and talking to all and sundry in a pleasant enough way, as those same people politely responded in a style forced by the societal structures of social interaction - which I adhere to less and less each day, and feel so much better for it. This is where I would have been much more blunt, but I was sitting in an alcove by the window, and, beside catching some dude throw up outside an hour or so before, it wasn't too bad a view.
Anyway, what caught me most about the fella, was his ad-nauseum booming repetition of the phrase 'We beat Man Utd, we are Arsenal!!'. I heard it and, much as I appreciate the skill and talent of Arsenal football club (And they truly are something to behold), I kinda realized that this guy probably had little else in his life which served him any form of internal validation. I mean, he didn't beat Man Utd... he got pissed, went home, propped his lazy arse on the sofa, and watched the immensely talented Arsenal team beat Man Utd. There is a difference. Does this merit me supporting the postman? If he wins a tenner on the lottery, I can walk around shouting... 'We won a tenner on the lottery!' We are my postman! Or when Andy Murray wins a grand-slam, omit the same proclamations?
It took me back to a bus journey home back in June last year, the evening after me, Darren, and Marissa had viewed, like most of the country, England's hammering and elimination from the 2010 World Cup by Germany, in The Junction in Harrow. (Ironically, the very same pub I saw them go out of the World Cup in 2006 - a firm indication to broaden my horizons if there ever was one).Going home, I happen to spot a disheveled looking English male in his mid-40's, as he sat alone on an old rotted wooden bench of a virtually empty small row of local shops - a beer can resting by his side, as his head lay hung down deep in his hands, and carrying an expession of a man who has just lost everything... not a piece of love, a moment of chance, or a section of time, but, everything! Dejection was an understatement. Personally, it was a shame, and I really thought England would at least turn up and do some credible damage, beyond that of their own ridiculously unmerited reputation, (England are, much as I hate to admit it, the Tottenham Hotspurs of international football). But, looking at my girlfriend ,and a guy I have seen grow up into a man it is simply impossible to either dislike or have any negativity towards, I realized it didn't really matter. Life went on.
I just wonder how it must be to live a life where all your happiness and feelings of euphoria are determined by acts you are completely helpless to effect? That scares me. I will admit to being someone who attains control issues, which are improving with maturity. But to place it all in the hands of people you have never even met? I don't know, it makes no sense to me.
It doesn't mean celebrating a teams achievement is not a good thing. Without fans, there are no potential for a team to build or nurture. But when it is literally the only thing you have... that is kinda scary to me! Then again, I support Barnet... so even the thought of abject glory, is ridiculous by itself.
Anyway, best rush off to buy the postman a lottery ticket.