Bikram yoga

When “Big” Sam Allardyce took charge at Newcastle it was thought that he was an old fashioned type of manager. He liked the long ball game, his teams played rigid 4-4-2 tactics and worst of all – he had a mustache.

His reputation was unfair as players later reported he had introduced some revolutionary training methods. He encouraged the players to do Pilates to increase their flexibility. He hired AC Milan’s Psychologist to help them create a winning mentality and he made them all watch Geordie shore so they could get to know the fans better.

Not all of this went down well. The Psychologist brought play-dough into a team meeting. He asked each player to craft the dough into an object that represented their position in the team. One player made a set of goals. One player made a bench (this was the era of Michel Owen) and the rest of them combined all their play-dough to create a massive cock. The psychologist did not bother coming back.

Modern players are allot more open to alternative training methods. Ryan Giggs credits his long career to afternoons getting into awkward sweaty positions. He said it was yoga but the super injunction he raised in the High Court said it was hotel romps with Imogen Thomas. If I had got to the final of the Champions League, won the premiership and still found time to romp with a page 3 model then I wouldn’t have taken out a super injunction to prevent papers reporting it. I’d have taken out a full page ad saying look at me. I’m awesome!

The newest craze among sportsmen is Bikram Yoga. Andy Murray has testified to how much it helps him. Although a 5 time loser isn’t the best choice of spokesman. Bikram Yoga sessions run for exactly 90 minutes and consist of a set series of 26 postures (performed twice each). It takes place in a room heated to 40C with a humidity of 40%.

A Bikram studio has just opened in Glasgow so I was keen to try it out for myself.
Its a strange experience because 90% of the class are female students (due to its closeness to the university) who wear next to nothing! Its hard to know where to look. I’m  hot and sweaty due to all the naked flesh and they heat hasn’t been turned on yet.
Its so hot that men should only wear a pair of shorts. I strip off. At this point I’m confused as I spot a fat man in the mirror looking at me but I don’t see him when I turn around. He must have left.
A fellow middle aged man nod in my direction. If that happened in a pub we might becomes “mates” or “friends” but here it feels sordid. I think I’ve just joined his “ring” and you only ever hear that phrase when men get busted by the police. A bikram “ring” was arrested today….
The poses start easily enough. You lie on your back and breath. Which is so easy I could do it in my sleep. As they get harder the sweat really runs off my body like rats from a sweaty ship. It pools on the floor all around me. Is everyone else this sweaty? The instructor says we can finish with some more lying down exercises but this time face down. I have to lie down and put my face into a pool of my own sweat. If he was an interrogator and this was a torture scenario then I would now tell him everything.
At the end of the class you lie in darkness and contemplate what you have just achieved. The instructor says take as long as you need. It takes me two seconds to think – if I leave now then I’ll get into the showers before anyone else. I’m away and out before you can say “Sa Ta Na Ma Shanti”
You can find out more information on Glasgow Bikram here https://www.facebook.com/bikramyogawestend/app_6261817190?filter=1
They currently do a £20 for 20 days offer.
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How Rangers can win friends and influence people

How to Win Friends and Influence People is one of the best-selling self-help books ever published.  It contains a number of easy to follow rules (Rule 1: Begin in a friendly way.)

Now I believe Charles Green has been good for Scottish football (Rule 4: Begin with praise and honest appreciation.) in the same way that Fergus McCann arrived as an outsider and was able to point out the flaws in our national game. (Rule 7: Give the other person a fine reputation to live up to.)

I admit I was wrong when I initially thought he was a man who was all talk and no action (Rule 3:If you’re wrong, admit it quickly and emphatically.) but he has won over the fans and had a successful share launch. (Rule 6: Make the other person feel important – and do it sincerely.)

Charles is a great speaker (Rule 12: Give the other person a fine reputation to live up to.) but one of his recent statements has let him down. Though I think upon reflection (Rule 15: Use encouragement. Make the fault seem easy to correct.) he will see that for once he wasn’t acting in the best interests of the Rangers fans because they have suffered a lot of injustice and this initially seemed like another one (Rule 15: Be sympathetic with the other person’s ideas and desires.).

Charles came out and stated that he was against the new 12-12-18 league proposal. He should look again at it as it’s in his best interests (Rule 21: Talk in terms of the other person’s interest.)

Currently Rangers would play SPL standard football:

2012-13 Division 3
2013-14 Division 2
2014-15 Division 1
2015-16 SPL

Under the new proposal:

2012-13 Division 3
2013-14 Division 2 (new 18 man team)
2014-15 (pre split) Division 1
2014-15 (post split) bottom 4 SPL sides
2015-16 SPL

The new proposals brings meaningful games back to Ibrox in a shorter period of time. Does that not sound better Charles? (Rule 17: Ask questions instead of giving direct orders.) It’s good for the fans and good for your shareholders and what’s good for them reflects well on you. (Rule 11: Make the other person happy about doing what you suggest.)

So before you issue any more public statements may I suggest that its easier to work with people than against them. Let see some positive statements from you in future. (Rule 22: Throw down a challenge.)

Xmas gift guide (football)

If you don’t know what to get a friend for Xmas then you don’t know them well enough to buy them a present! So if you do insist on buying every Tom,Dick or Facebook friend something then Scottish Comedy FC has some helpful and not so helpful suggestions.

A Brick

When I graduated from university in 1999 the Principal told us that our year was special because we were a millennium class. To commemorate this event he was going to build a brick wall and each and every one of our names would be on it. In years to come my children, my grand children and my great children would be able to see my name. This gesture would have been amazing if the wall hadn’t been the new toilet block.

Football clubs also play on this notion of “history” and “legacy” by selling bricks to gullible, sorry I meant loyal supporters who then personalize the brick by putting a short message on it. I bought one for a Xmas present. It was a great until we tried to find it. Have you ever tried to find your name in a wall of 1000 bricks? It’s next to impossible. It took three separate visits and nearly two years before we tracked down the brick. Its like a brick version of “Where’s Wally?” but it turns out that the wally is actually the man who bought one.

A Calendar

If you want a present that will date well then buy a calendar. I recommend Joe Hart’s 2013 calendar which is described as “Great images of Joe in action on the pitch, posing for the camera and playing a round of Golf.” Why would I want pictures of him playing golf? He’s a goalkeeper. Give me pictures of him goalkeeping. It’s like buying a page 3 calendar from The Sun and finding out January has actual news on it rather than a naked lady.

A Book

At Xmas every man and his dog releases an autobiography. This year that dog is Uggie from the Oscar-winning film “The Artist.” People ask how a dog can write an autobiography but if Wayne Rooney can write one then so can a dumb animal.

If you do buy a book then I’d recommend “The Secret Race: Inside the Hidden World of the Tour de France: Doping, Cover-ups, and Winning at All Costs.” I am now convinced that drugs are amazing and I can’t wait to use them to improve my performance. I’m not sure that was the message I was supposed to take from it.

In terms of football books “Barca: The Making of the Greatest Team in the World” covers the recent history of Barcelona FC in an entertaining and informative manner. It reveals that great management isn’t just setting tactics and picking players it’s also letting players go home for their dinner before an evening kick off.

Perfume

Football might be a macho game of sweat and tears but you can’t put that in a bottle and call it perfume. Therefore, most Premiership clubs sell a club branded bottle of “Eau de Sport.” I want to release my own perfume range. I’d call them “minging” for men and “boggin” for women so when folk are out and people ask what’s that smell? The asnwer is its minging!

Shares

This weekend £20000 a week Premier League star Liam Ridgewell was pictured apparently using cash instead of toilet roll. He was wiping his arse with £20 notes. He must have misheard the phrase money to burn and thought it was money to bum. The only more grossly offensive place I can think of sticking cash is into a football club.

Memorabilia

During an auction of memorabilia a Ryan Giggs jersey was sold. It was the home strip that he wore when he scored a famous solo goal against arsenal in the FA Cup. There was only one problem – he wore an away strip that day! So avoid signed items unless you actually handed over your own pen for the signing.

If after all that you are still stuck for ideas then give them a cat/dog but remember that an animal is not just for Xmas. The animal shelter doesn’t open till January so you will have to put up with them for new year too.

Celtic v Barcelona

When I was young we only had 12 months in the year but recently the UK has added a 13th month – Movember (http://uk.movember.com/.) During this month men are encouraged to grow a mustache for charity but what about the men who already have one? I’d encourage them to shave it off. They could call the month No-vember. Why should we raise money for charity just one month a year? In spring people should be encouraged to walk back and forth for charity. I’d call that month – March.

This November/Movember Celtic play Barcelona but it’s not the first time the superstars of Catalonia have played at Parkhead on a bleak November evening. In 1996 Celtic paid Barcelona to fly to Scotland and partake in a friendly. I remember reading the match programme on the way into the game and getting giddy like a schoolgirl at the prospect of seeing the players. as they would  have flawless technique, tricks aplenty and the aura of superstardom. The Barcelona team would be pretty good too.

This was the Barcelona Squad (taken from the match program):

Vitor Baia – The greatest Portuguese goalkeeper of all time. He only played a couple of seasons at Barcelona but made his name during his two spells at Porto  During his second spell at the club he found the number 1 jersey was taken so requested 99 instead. Therefore becoming one of the first players to realize that linking your name to a number is much more marketable than just accepting any old shirt. He also met Celtic in the UEFA Cup Final in Seville but the less said about that the better!

Fernando Couto – One of the greatest Portuguese central defenders of all time. He was also one of the few footballers to have ever failed a drug test, for nandrolone. Wayne Rooney has also failed a nandrolone test, though the test was “How do you spell nandrolone?”

Laurent Blanc – One of the…[you get the idea by now] – He had a spell playing for Manchester United. During his first season their first five losses were to Bolton, Liverpool, Arsenal, Newcastle, and Chelsea. Which if you take the first letters of the clubs spells BLANC.  Sir Alex Ferguson bought Vidic as a replacement as there were no teams in the league starting with V, I or D.

Nadal – Not the greatest of footballers but his tennis career is going well. (Joking aside, he’s Rafa’s uncle)

Sergi – He sounds Russian but is actually Spanish. He played for Barcelona for ten years and was so good they didn’t bother giving him a surname.

Gheorghe Popescu – Although he also played  for Tottenham, the match Spurs fans most remember him for is the UEFA Cup in May 2000. Galatasaray defeated Arsenal on penalties after a goalless draw in open play. He scored the final penalty in the shootout.

Luis Enrique – One of Pele’s top 125 greatest players of all time. He started out at Real Madrid before sensationally switching to Barcelona. He is therefore known as the Spanish Mo Johnston.

Hristo Stoichkov – A Barcelona legend. He was such an amazing player that a statue was built in his honor to which he said “Make sure you add a pair of golden balls to it.”

Ivan de la Pena – Nickname little buddha because of his shiny bald head. He was a brilliant youth prospect which was  a tag he never lost throughout his career which makes him the  Spanish Eoin Jess.

Ronaldo – A man who should be remembered for his amazing goal-scoring record for club and country, but who instead I’ll always remember as a man who was arrested after ordering three transvestite hookers. Why not just two? It’s because he was ball greedy.

Giovanni – After his Barcelona career ended he accused Louis Van Gaal of behaving like ‘Hitler’ towards the Brazilian players at the club. A tag that Hitler complained about as he at least listened to the fans.

Luis Figo – The leader of Portugal’s “Golden Generation” and one of the great players of the modern era, married to a supermodel, speaks five languages and does wonders for charity. Although he did make a d*ck of himself in a Just for Men advert, thus proving karma exists.

Ferrer – Who? Seriously, over 200 appearances for Barcelona, 36 caps for Spain, and a spell at Chelsea too. In the days when full-backs were still allowed to be wee and weren’t converted centre-halves or midfielders.

Antonio Pizzi – The only player in the team to play for two Barcelona sides. Once for football and the other in their  successful horse polo team.

Aberlardo – He looks like The Count from Sesame Street.

Guardiola – I couldn’t find anything on him. I don’t think he’s amounted to much.

So on that night 17 years ago I settled down to watch these greats play and found that none of them had turned up! Actually that’s not strictly true  as Ivan de lan pena was there but if given a choice of only one player from this list to come he would not have been my first choice or my second or my third or my….

Twins Part 2

When my mum is asked – “what do your twin sons do for a living?” She often replies “One is a lawyer and the other…the other is….did I mention that one is a lawyer?”  Life would be so much simpler for her if we both had the same job. So in today’s piece lets look at twins whose mums can answer the question by saying “they are both footballers.”

Lets start off close to home (Glasgow) withFlavio and Marco Paixao. Scottish fans will be familiar with these two players from Portugal due to a two-year stint they had with Hamilton. During that time they were more famous for their haircuts than the football skills. It makes them a Portuguese Jedward.

They now both play in Iran. Which must come as a culture shock after living in Lanarkshire as one is a land of bigots and sectarianism and the other is next to Iraq. [the old jokes are the best][Editor’s Note: Joking aside, Iran has the Middle East’s largest Jewish population outwith Israel (Jews have lived in Persia for around 2000 years) and, as with followers of the Zoroastrian faith also, they have their own representative in the Iranian parliament. Scottish Comedy FC – the football site that isn’t looking to p*ss off Iran.]

Scotland has produced its own footballing twins. David and Scott McNivenplayed in England for Hyde United and they both got sent off in the same game. The FA believe it is the first time twins have ever been sent off in a game. Scott got his red card for an off-the-ball clash. David was booked for protesting and then picked up a second yellow for time-wasting. David said: “If we were going to pick something we’d be remembered for this wouldn’t be it, but at least we’ll be in the record books.”

The most famous footballing twins wereFrank and Ronald de Boer. Although most people are unaware that is not actually their real names – it is Franciscus and Ronaldus. If they weren’t footballers then they could have been monks. They too ended up in the middle east but in the slightly more liberal Qatar. Though women, alcohol, and meat are still banned. It’ll be just the Tartan Army’s luck to qualify for the Qatar World Cup. [Editor’s Note: Joking aside again, we don’t want to upset any of our Qatari readership, so we’d like to point out that women in Qatar tend not to wear the Burka, foreign women are exempt from local dress codes (though do have to dress modestly), alcohol is available in clubs & hotels, and pork is now available in some specialist shops. Also, we are available for any paid jaunts to Qatar to further extol the merits of the country. Just call us FIFA!]

Frank and Ronald both played for Holland. You would think both twins would represent the same country but not in the case of Michael and William Keane from Manchester United’s youth academy.  One plays for Ireland and the other for England. They were born in England but they both qualify for Ireland as their dad, Michael senior, was born in Dublin.  Normally parents love both their children equally but in this case its clear one must be better at football than the other. They have another brother who can’t kick a ball and struggles to run. Craig Levein is picking him for the next Scotland squad.

Aleksei and Vasili Berezutski have formed the backbone of the CSKA Moskow and Russian defence for many years. If their football career ever comes to the end then with their imposing stature and looks they could play Bond villains

Twins do not necessarily have to play for the same team. Rafael and Fabio da Silva had played together since school but since signing for Manchester United Fabio has been sent out on loan to  Queens Park Rangers. Alex Ferguson says that the players are so alike he could play one in the first half and the other in the second and nobody would notice the difference. QPR should check that they have the right one for the whole season! Alex might swap them when his gets tired.

If Alex thinks managing one set of twins is confusing then we should feel sorry for the coach of Anderson University because he has two sets of twins in the side. Jessica and Ashley Kleinberg play alongside Kathryn and Joelle Purinton. I wonder if they form a back 4 or a back 2×2.

The most successful brothers in football since the Charltons are Phil and Gary Neville but although they are not twins Phil and Tracey Neville are.  They are so alike that if you put a blond wig on Phil then you would mistake him for his sister. Tracey was a Netball player and competed at two Commonwealth Games until her retirement due to injury.  Unlike her two brothers she is not hated by Liverpool fans.

Finally I’ll answer another question twins are often asked. “How do you tell the difference between the two of you?” It’s actually quite simple. My friend, who did not know I was a twin, looked at a picture of Andrew on Facebook and asked “was I sick at the weekend? Because you look ill in this picture” so if you want to tell us part then I’m the healthy one and Andrew is just a pale, washed out, sickly looking, weak, ill…[Andrew says I’ve made my point] version of me.

Twins part 1

Are you struggling to think of a Xmas present for a loved one? If socks are too boring and chocolates don’t scream festive love then you should consider purchasing a DNA test!

A DNA test is a staple of TV talk shows such as Jeremy Kyle and Rikki Lake. Its used to find out whether that child from another mother to your current lover is actually a kid from a woman you did.

I used to watch Rikki but only for the title sequence. These are actual titles: “Today I Tell My Cousin and My Sister… ‘Back Off, Girl! Stop Sleeping with My Mister’!”, “You Proposed to Me on Ricki, but There’s Still No Date…What’s Up with That, We’re Getting Irate” and my favorite “The DNA Test Proved This Is Your Kid…Since You Haven’t Paid, It’s Time Your Family Did”.

DNA tests don’t just prove that the CSA is owed money. They can also trace your ancestors.  For £170 a Scottish firm will find out whether you are a family of Blackadders or Baldricks (masters or servants). The professor who runs the project used it to trace his own ancestors and discovered that he was related to royalty. Of course he found that! If I was a DNA expert selling a DNA test then I too would make sure the result was good!  If I was selling a test I’d say “for £170 I’ll prove your DNA is related to royalty but for £300 I’ll prove you are a descendant of of Braveheart – the Mel Gibson version.”

The professor does state one good thing on his website “…Of all the people in the world, the most fascinating are Twins!”. I’d also add that they tend to be the most intelligent, good-looking and experts in the bedroom. [Note: I am not biased by myself being a twin. Honest]

Eight different types of twins exist: identical, fraternal, half-identical, mirror image twins, mixed chromosome twins, superfecundation, superfetation and Jedward. Jedward combine the first letter of one name and the rest of the other. They will therefore be able to understand why I refer to them as funts.

Scientists believe that the number of twin conceptions greatly outnumbers the number of twin births. Very often one of the fertilized eggs will be reabsorbed into the mother’s womb. A phenomenon called “vanishing twin syndrome.” In our situation my brother was nearly “vanished” as he was born choking and struggling to breathe as he had the umbilical cord wrapped round his neck. He claims that I must have done this to him and therefore it’s the first instance of attempted murder in the womb! All I can say is that anyone trapped for nine months in a confined space with him would have done exactly the same as his chat is dire!

The incidence of twin types and genders are oddly symmetrical.  One third of all twins born are identical, one third are same sex fraternal and one third are male/female fraternal. Of the identical twins, half are male/male and half are female/female. Of the same sex fraternal, half are male/male and half are female/female. To keep up this ratio when one set of twin dies another is born which is why we were born the exact moment Elvis Presley died (When he died did they have to inform the next of king?) Elvis had a twin brother called Jesse who died in childbirth. If they were alive today then they would be know as the the american JEdward…JElvis.

Lastly I’d like to answer the most common question Twins get asked “Have you ever switched and pretended to be each other for a bit of fun. <nudge> <nudge>” – No! I have never slept with his partner. If you looked like your dad would you dress up and f**k your mum? no – so don’t ask me.

In part 2 of this article (available when I get round to writing it) it’s back to the football as I list some famous and not so famous footballing Twins.

The Stanley Cup

Scotland lost a vital world cup qualifier to Wales on a damp Friday night in Cardiff. The game was won single-handedly by Tottenham winger Gareth Bale.  During the Olympics Gareth conveniently pled injury to get out of competing for the Great Britain team but he has made Wales such a one-man team that they could change their name to Team GB. Although the Welsh may be a one-man team, that was still one more than Scotland had. The true indictment of how low Scotland have fallen isn’t losing a world cup qualifier, it’s the fact Gary Caldwell has over 50 caps.

If asked which trophy is the most travelled in the world I expect most people would answer the World Cup. In fact it’s the NHL’s Stanley Cup. If you are wondering which country has a football league called the NHL then the answer is no country! As a distraction from Scotland’s woes the site is abandoning football for the day and looking at Ice Hockey instead.

The Stanley Cup is presented to each winning team of the NHL. The NHL is the biggest and most famous professional Ice hockey league  in the world and comprises teams from the US and Canada. The winning team is allocated 100 days with the trophy.  Recently teams have given each player 1 day each to do with it what they like.

Players have taken it home to show to their families, its been taken to Afghanistan to cheer up the troops and one player took it to a night club to drink champagne out of it. If you’re a multimillionaire player with a sporting physique and you still can’t pull in a nightclub without the aid of a trophy then your chat must be rotten!

Sport can be notorious for its prehistoric views on homosexuality but not the Stanley Cup. It’s even been to Gay Pride.

The base of the cup contains the names of every player and coach of the winning sides. This puts a lot of pressure on the engraver to get it right. He sometimes gets it wrong. In 1963 Toronto Maple Leafs won it but the cup was engraved as Toronto Maple Leaes. A similar error exists in Scotland where Rangers have been engraved as winners on a number of trophies when it should actually have been Celtic. [The author admits a bias to the green half of Glasgow and awaits the result of the EBT case with interest!]

The NHL season should be under way but it’s currently on hold as  the players are in dispute with the league over how much they should be paid. Some players have decided to play in other leagues whilst they await the outcome which is why last week Glasgow’s professional Ice Hockey side The Braehead clan (http://www.braeheadclan.com/) announced the signing of a genuine Stanley Cup Winner Drew Miller. He won the Stanley Cup with the Anaheim Ducks in 2007.

The Braehead Clan play their home games at Braehead arena. Tickets are reasonably priced and they offer a facility where you can print your own ticket at home. Although don’t do what I did and then leave the tickets at home! Luckily they offered a reprint facility at the arena.

The game was a Scottish derby against  Edinburgh Capitals (http://www.edinburgh-capitals.com/)

The Edinburgh side are bottom of the league so it was no surprise when the Clan ran out 6-3 winners.

After the game they offer ‘Skate with the Clan’. For £5 you can pay to skate on the ice and be joined by the teams players for chats and photographs. Imagine if football let you play on the pitch afterwards. I think this could be a money earner for teams with all-weather surfaces, although after a defeat a players might not want to meet a fan for a “chat.”

Finally, a challenge to SCFC readers. The team has just launched a new mascot but he currently has no name! You can offer suggestions on their Facebook and Twitterpages. My current suggestion for the cow is ‘Pat’.