Saturday 19 May 2012

Out with the Old in With Agnew

Today saw the 14-millionth storm in a teacup on Twitter. Twitroversies are ten a penny. For this reason it tends to be ones that are based on something slightly important or meaningful that become a thing for a while. You know, like someone saying someone is a dick: THAT meaningful.

So what was up today? The writer Ian Martin did some tweets while listening to Test Match Special. If you don’t know who Morris is he’s a writer on, amongst other things,  The Thick of It. So, enough said: he’s brilliant. The way I once saw him described was as the swearing consultant and he was responsible for a lot of Malcolm Tucker. Even more brillianter than eh? His tweets looked like this:

and this

and this

Someone told Jonathan Agnew (TMS presenter, one of the 7 Kings of English Cricketing Tweeters, fawned all over Lily Allen when she said she liked cricket a couple of years ago “whizzer a girl likes cricket and she’s quite popular with the youth right now”) and he got all upset about it and threatened to resign from Twitter. Yeah….this got reported by a newspaper*.

That something like this can be talked about as bullying is amazingly disrespectful to the hours of hard work and torture actual bullies put in across the planet on a daily basis. Basically Ian Martin did a few jokes that would have been laughed off if they had been done by Michael McIntyre and hadn’t included swearing. TMS DO spend a lot of time talking about cakes, non-cricket anecdotes and general back-slappery. This paradigm of middle-class maleness that each TMS presenter exudes surely has a stiff upper lip as a constituent element? When someone, like Agnew here, gets their arse out about it I feel like screaming IGNORE HIM like Alan Partridge does to the Tory MP who is being harassed by the bald brummy from Birmingham.

Yes, he should just ignore it. And no the correct way to sort it shouldn’t be for it not to have happened in the first place. Let me clear about this: If you are going to talk about pies on a sport broadcast and then complain when someone just says that you are talking about pies it is not appropriate to react as though you are the victim of a hate crime.

Even if it were malicious, which it wasn’t: it was clearly angry but not malicious, then Agnew should be able to take it on the chin. Who are these celebrities who think they are above any criticism? They fucking love it when 20, 000 people are following them and stroking their egos but should one person question their talents  and they’re cocking the shotguns. Celebrities are like..(don’t do it Phil, for once don’t say something nothing like the Nazis is like the Nazis)..Nazis. They are: they can’t take criticsm, think they are perfect and only breed with their own and are obsessed with looking perfect. Ok, maybe they are not LIKE Nazis, but they definitely share some qualities.

For once I am speaking with some perspective: Ian Martin ‘hate-crimed’ me on Twitter in December – so I know the horror that Agnew went through. Martin tweeted something about being literally pissed off…no I don’t have to describe it, found it…

It was a personal highlight of 2011 if truth be told. I still think I was right, though. People misusing a word and then being all like ‘oh don’t be so pedantic’ in reply are just fucking wrong. No: You stop getting language wrong. It actually matters to try and use words in the right way. If it carries on like this with the ‘oh it doesn’t matter everyone uses it <whatever word> with that meaning then everyone will just use the word ‘like’ to mean everything by 2042.

*Well, The Mirror.


I nipped into the little coffee shop at Oxford Road Train Station for a coffee of all things. Noticed they sell cigarettes in there, just the two obvious brands: Marlboro Red and B&H Superkings. They mustn’t get many people in there who don’t have a constant heavy cough.

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