Are you aware of the modern term Interlull? Meaning a dull interlude, brightened only very slightly by an international match in which England underwhelm? I am proposing an extension of this conception to include matches in which Arsenal have been awful. It shall perhaps be called a Shitterlull, or when we have thrown away a lead yet again a Blunderlull.
These periods of time shall be treated as not canonical to this season. We should address our collective failings as something vaguely annoying, but nothing more. An irritating loss akin to losing in a testimonial or exhibition match. Nothing to worry about. It’s easier this way. No points are at stake during a Blunderlull.
If one were to really think about events of last weekend with any degree of acceptance that they actually happened, one would quickly become morose. Imagine if, eight days after leading the Premier League, we approached the match agin the Abu Dhabi Vulgarians nine points adrift of the Fulham Gang of Footpads & Mercenaries. According to Mr. Windsor, how we responded to our loss at Goodison would have defined our season. If we had thrown away another 1-0 lead to lose 2-1 we could legitimately lose our collective excrement. So, think Blunderlull. It didn’t actually happen.
Much better to think happier thoughts. So:
Ho ho ho! It’s that time of year again, when a fat man in red and white brings gifts to all those on the ‘good’ list. His name? As every Woolwich child knows, it is Saint John Hartson. The legend of Saint John, or ‘Santa John’, as he is known to the young of north London, is this.
One day, a very long time ago, there was an evil King called King George. King George was not born a King, but became anointed King when King Don, of the House Howe, was deposed. Nobody knew King George was evil at the time, and he was loved by his people, having brought peace and stability to the Kingdom. He made Woolwich Castle the best defended castle in the realm with its four keeps; Adams Tower, Dixon Lookout, Bould Redoubt and Winter Burn. No army could penetrate those mighty walls and King George lead Woolwich to many famous victories.
One of the last things King George did was to buy a brave knight from The Wildlings of Bedfordshire, known as Sir John of Glamorgan. The kingdom needed a fleshy, tall, lump of a knight to win many of the jousting battles with other kingdoms, which we were currently losing. At first, all went well. Sir John was a big-boned hero to the kingdom, almost slaying the dragon Zaragoza, only to be defeated by Nayim of Middlesex in the last minute.
Then one day, King George wanted to buy the knights Sir Jensen of the North and Sir Pal of Nobodysheardofhimsince. King George decided that he was going to fund his own lifestyle by cutting himself a slice of money pie that was a little too big for his kingly stomach. Even though King George was the King, and sat on the Marble Throne, he wasn’t above the law of the land and he was beheaded with a rusty axe. Such was his evil that he came back to life. One day King George staggered his way to the training ground where he intended to wreak havoc on the Woolwich knights. Sir John of Glamorgan, all magnificent 18 stone of him, spotted the undead King and sat upon him, crushing him.
“King George,” said Sir John of Glamorgan, “Begone from this realm forever, undead King George. I am cursing you. Never shall you manage a London club again. If you set foot in London, apart from away matches, you shall burn with the light of a thousand suns!”
And King George was forever banished, managing only a small club from the north and one from the home counties.
The new King, Robert the Bruce, quickly bought Sir Dennis of the Neverlands, who was a better knight than Sir John in the way a Bugatti Royale is a better car than a Robin Reliant. But Sir John was made a Saint of the Realm, and every year on December 25th, gifts are exchanged in the honour of the big fat man in red and white who banished Evil King George forever.
So remember, you’d better be good, or Sir John of Glamorgan will come and sit on you.