Jack Wilshere – Arsenal’s midfielder – got into some trouble yesterday. In the middle of London, balanced on his hind legs like Rory Calhoun, he undertook what has now become his annual tradition – pastime if you will – of shouting a bad chant from the top of a large bus to thousands of people.
“What do you think of Tottenham?” he asked, though one assumes he knew the answer already.
“Not much Jack!” replied his adoring public.
“What do you think of ‘not much’?” he replied once again.
“Tottenham!” replied the crowd in the verbal equivalent of banging one’s head against a wall repeatedly.
Of course, both he and they didn’t say “not much”, but being the kind folk we are, we know and are better than to pollute your eye holes with curse words. Curse words so vile they’ve inspired some of Britain’s best and brightest journalists to condemn Mr. Wilshere – a father to a human boy lest we forget – for uttering them.
And they’re right. The public domain is no place for this talk. London, a place of which James Joyce once said “You wouldn’t find a curse word if you looked really hard”, is certainly not the place for it. People, good and warm and wet as they are, need not be subjected to this. The population need not be a petri dish to Jack Wilshere’s experimental laboratory of lewdness.
And really, isn’t this the problem with footballers? They’re so wealthy and rich and out of touch that they feel that they can do anything, such as curse a few words at people who love them after they’ve won an important trophy. Why can’t they just go and beat policewomen up with their enormous rugby player body like normal people? Maybe then we’d have some sympathy for them.
Some may say the media’s reaction has been greater than that which they are talking about. Some may even say that newspapers such as the Mail and Telegraph should look in the mirror before preaching about the language someone uses considering they rhetoric they often emit. Not us though.
You see, Jack said bad words. BAD WORDS! In public. At people with ears. At people who might not have wanted to hear it. It was then shared on phones and other devices to more people. People who were presumably forced to watch it as their eyelids were held up by Arsenal branded matchsticks.
One can only imagine the collective restless sleep endured by the crowd after such a display. Tossing and turning to the turgid sounds of “TOTTENHAM!” and “NOT MUCH!” “Why did he say it Mummy?” at least one child must have said. “I don’t know son, I DON’T KNOW!” replied his mother, sobbing and shaking her fist.
And this is what it’s about. The children. No one curses at home or on television, no one certainly curses in the playground. No one says “Fuck you Daddy!” or “Fuck yes, I’ll have another slice!” so why should Jack Wilshere get to do so? He shouldn’t – exactly.
After this gutter language – little more than a poor substitution for the words uneducated Jack doesn’t know – there’s every chance some of these children may go on to curse in their own lives, to their friends, grandmothers and pet lizards. And we know where that leads to. Drugs, death and eternal damnation.
So next time you read a thinkpiece from a newspaper condemning Jack Wilshere for polluting your mind, your grandfather’s war record, your mum’s Sunday chicken recipe and yes, your entire existence, remember that it’s not a cheap hit at a sport deemed lower class by so many and as such an easy target.
It’s actually a perfectly reasonable response to the kind of behaviour that’s ruining Britain and by default, the rest of the former colonies.
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