WHERE THERE’S HOPE: Power struggles at work and home

SNOW JOKE: A reserve team blizzard
SNOW JOKE: A reserve team blizzard

I WAS off work on Wednesday, so was my other half.

Pools reserves were playing at Billingham against non-league Grimsby Town – a glamour tie at a glamour venue.

It was cold, freezing she said, there were blizzards in the air.

I had a choice to make.

At least I gave her a kiss goodbye.

But she was right, it was freezing, evidenced by the above picture.

I posted the snap on Twitter, compounding her hurt at the hostile environment I deemed more desirable than her company.

But I must say, I enjoyed it.

Not least because of the performance of trialist Dennis Knight.

He scored two goals and was the star man by some distance.

He won rave reviews in SportMail and, today, John Hughes has likened him to Italy forward Giuseppe Rossi.

But here I have confession to make.

Such were the Arctic conditions, both myself and Hughes missed Knight’s first goal, early in the second half.

For we were still downstairs having a cup of tea huddled next to a radiator!


I WROTE last week how I was returning to Swindon Town on Saturday, scene of my first away match as a young, football fan.

I noted then how I had not enjoyed that experience – a defeat for my team and crowd trouble the cause of my young angst.

At the weekend, a couple of Swindon Town officials appeared determined to confirm the County Ground as my least favourite venue.

Taking my seat in the press box 15 minutes before kick-off, I soon realised a dearth of electricity points – none, to be precise.

And so I embarked on my search for power – actual power that is, not the metaphorical type, I gave up on that a long time ago, I know my lowly place in the Mail’s chain of command.

Anyway, I soon happened upon the Swindon press officer.

I explained my predicament, assuming the power points were hidden to my untrained eye.

But no, there were none.

“If you’d told me you needed electricity I could have arranged it,” he said.

I’d been wrong to take it for granted - fresh-air-powered laptops must be all the rage in Wiltshire.

I did manage to steal some volts from an adaptor being used by my opposite number at the local paper, but I know next time to make it clear my computer is not the Mo Farah of the electronics world.

At half-time, irritated by my pre-game power struggle, I headed, through the crowds, back down to the press room for a much-needed cup of tea.

“Press pass?” the steward put.

“Sorry mate, I’ve left it in the press box,” I came back, “I’m just nipping in for a cup of tea.”

“You’ll have to go and get it,” he said, nodding towards the crowds I’d just battled though.

“It’ll take me 10 minutes to get there and back – surely my northern accent can act as my ID?”

He didn’t laugh.

“Listen, if I let you in without a pass they will literally nail me to the wall,” he sounded.

Wow – no electricity and nailing people to the walls – I know my travel buddy Frank Reid can reach some speeds, but I didn’t realise we’d gone back in time!