Ben is not a cynic. To him, pants are just trousers and the world is kind and fair. He’s handsome and nice and from 1994 when even I thought the world wasn’t such a bad place. The problem for me is that Ben is occupying my head – it’s his job and he’s mine. Ben was brought up poor after his father died from work-related asbestosis, but he’s not complaining. He got a job. He got married. He got divorced. Not his fault – obviously. Why would it be? Ben knew that Thatcher couldn’t last for ever and is grateful that his father was spared her altogether. He was right – she didn’t. It’s a blow when John Smith dies but Ben doesn’t know that welfare socialism, real socialism will die with him. Tony ‘Blah Blah’ Blair is as fresh-faced and eager as the Andrex puppy. Gordon ‘Scrooge McDuck’ Brown is still Gordon who? But Ben is already living in
I usually tell people that Ben looks like Daniel Craig. He doesn’t really, otherwise he’d be a movie star and not a divorcee with a small bar on the Costa
I say ‘spirited away’ because Smithy was lured to my childhood idols the Balmain Tigers by controversial radio personality and sometime rugby coach Alan Jones. There was talk because Smithy’s installation at half-back (as they say in rugby league), unceremoniously displaced crowd favourite and
- Bore a daft name.
- Had a disconcerting habit of bursting into prayer at inappropriate moments.
- Jeopardised our chances of winning the 1969 grand final in a pay dispute – and so didn’t succeed.
Dennis is pants. I was a child when I was in love with him.
Sometimes people just aren’t in the right place. I want Ben to have some of the spark I saw in Brian Smith when he first turned out for the Tigers. And I want it to end well too. Brian Smith seems to have found his spiritual home with London Irish.
Please light candles in the cause of Ben managing on the Costa del Sol. He does have the enormous disadvantage of me being in control of his destiny.
Be oh so very afraid for him.
But consider that at least he doesn't have Alan Jones in charge of his fate.
Picture of the actual real Brian Smith from www.london-irish.co.uk