No-one ever said it was gonna be easy. (See, I can mix it up with the 90s indie lyrics references.) The unbeaten run under Shez had to come to an end some time, but did it have to be quite such a kick in the crotch? Carlisle wasn’t quite a must-win game, but it certainly would have been very nice to get something out of it. It looked pretty promising at half time, with Hallam Hope (again!) looking like he’d spared DKD’s blushes after the penalty save, but if right at the end of the first half is a great time to score, then right at the start of the second half is a fucking horrible time to concede. Not as horrible as well into injury time with practically the last kick of the game, obviously. What a sickener. Carlisle were quite a physical side (well this is the fourth division after all), and it would have been an ideal game for a big strong target man up front. Y’know, someone like Fondop. Who looked like the striker we’ve desperately needed in the two games he played before picking up a season-ending injury. Fuck our luck.
Of course, Latics being Latics, us losing a 6-pointer and being in the relegation places was not the big story this week. News broke last week that an Oldham-born businessman was leading a consortium interested in buying the club, with ambitious plans to make it profitable, invest 10% of the club’s balance sheet in Bitcoin, and “To be challenging strongly or have attained Championship status” in 3 to 7 years. Well, we do love a plan, and there was a lot to like the sound of here, but the Bitcoin element raised a few eyebrows. I have to admit I don’t know enough about cryptocurrency, and it’s something I’m instinctively a bit suspicious of and sceptical about, not least because the people who are most evangelical about it on social media are often, well, a bit wacky. And Chris Lees’ suggestion that people check out Max Keiser to learn more about Bitcoin did nothing to dispel that.
(Image © @maxkeiser )
If you’re not familiar with Max Keiser, he had a show on Russia Today (which, fair play to him, he pulled on February 24th), which we were fans of in our house, because it was, quite frankly, hilarious. We stumbled on it channel-flicking years ago, when he was comparing the UK economy to ‘a great big crack pipe’ and said, more than once, “George Osborne smokes crack”. He’s a big advocate of Bitcoin, and his twitter account is mostly about that, but recently on his RT show he seemed to be talking mostly about investing in gold and silver, which, coincidentally, RT was FULL of adverts for. Nothing to see here. Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain.
The interview with Chris Lees on the BPAS pod certainly did nothing to challenge my prejudices about crypto bros. (Incidentally, for the hard of thinking at the back, interviewing someone on your podcast doesn’t mean you endorse them. The lads let me write a blog on here, it doesn’t mean they endorse my plans to establish a socialist republic, abolish VAR and send Mike Dean to a re-education camp on Anglesey.) His enthusiastic explanation of Bitcoin, which covered the war on Iraq, quantitative easing and the Roman Empire, wasn’t factually wrong, but it was… a little eccentric. The rest of the interview continued in this vein, and we heard all about his arrest on suspicion of drug offences (which he was found not guilty of), his subsequent hunger strike, how much he hates politics, but he was a Lib Dem councillor and stood for UKIP, ‘for a laugh’ because he hates the EU… He sounded like quite the character, who’s lived quite the life. And if you weren’t raising your eyebrows at anything else, then surely his recollection of ‘that famous Mark Hughes backheel’ must have set the klaxons off. Mate, we’ve all tried to wipe that goal from our memories, but… backheel?!?
Sadly, I missed the Twitter space thing on Tuesday, which everyone seems to agree was the most entertaining thing to have happened to our support since the fans’ forum at Royton CC. I was watching a play at Oldham Library, and found myself in the Ashton Arms afterwards looking at my phone asking “why is everyone talking about Come Dine With Me on the #oafc timeline? Why are there pictures of someone sticking carrots up his nose?”.
The following day, the Droylsden Poirot took to Twitter to share the findings of an impressive amount of digging, and it didn’t paint an appealing picture. The fact that Chris Lees went on Come Dine With Me, under a false name, at a time when he says he was living abroad, and pretended to have been Tina Turner’s bass player is not, on its own, a reason to dismiss him as a potential buyer. His old Twitter account, which is full of conspiracy theories, and which he appeared to confirm was his on the podcast, but later claimed was his ex-wife’s, is not, on its own, a reason to dismiss him as a buyer. The fact that there doesn’t seem to be much evidence of his business interests in the public domain is not, on its own, a reason to dismiss him as a buyer. The fact that he thinks THAT goal in 1994 was a backheel is not, on its own, a reason to dismiss him as a buyer. But taken together, it’s hard to take him seriously. As desperate as we are to get rid of the Lemsagams, let’s not fall for any old bullshit and accept anyone who talks a good game as our saviour. We can, and must, do better.
Back to matters on the pitch, then. It’ll struggle to be as entertaining as the circus off it. Safe journey to everyone travelling to Swindon. Let’s hope we’re back to singing Shez’s praises tonight. If not, let’s all get pissed and watch Come Dine With Me. You bring the dips, I’ll bring the carrots.
Written by Arlene Finnigan