Virgin United

27 Oct

I hesitated to use today’s title because of the weird searches it will attract to my blog.  For all of five seconds.  Think of the weird searches it will attract to my blog!

Manchester City FC

Image by scaryredhair via Flickr

Some background information is necessary for many of you to comprehend today’s post.

1) Richard Branson must be a United fan.  He lives in London; that was my first clue.

2) I support Manchester City football club.  I was an Evertonian by birth but the Hub made me convert on marriage, and there’s no zealot like a convert: I am unashamed in my bias.

3) Our arch rivals are Manchester United, a team that resides in the City of Salford, not Manchester – hence the number of United fans who don’t come from Manchester (are you listening, Irish Tinman?). 

If you are American, think of the intense rivalry between the Chicago Bulls and the Chicago White Sox and you’ll get an idea of what I’m talking about – two teams playing in different leagues.  For years we have been the poor relations but that is changing: a very nice and supremely rich man, Sheikh Mansour, kindly made us the richest football team in the world; bought us a manager who has won silverware at every club he has ever managed (now including us; thank you, O The Great Mancini); and fabulous players who wouldn’t have considered us a few short seasons ago.  Money buys success: who’d have thunk it?

But I digress.

4) It was Derby Day last Sunday: City trounced United 6 – 1 at home.  Their home.  It’s like someone walked in, bashed the wife about, got the kids to lick his slippers and ate the man of the house’s chicken dinner.  Pretty nasty.  Tee hee.

I wasn’t going to mention it, despite Tinman’s masterful explanation of what went wrong, which deserves a big audience (I couldn’t give him this week’s CoWAbunger because that would have seemed like I was gloating about his miserable team’s pitiful performance and I would never do that, even though they were rubbish and we played them off the park):

BTW, tell the Hub that seven of your six goals were offside, you started the game with eighteen players, the goal was wider at the end we were defending and, thanks to a bizarre sponsorship deal, our players were forced to play wearing deep-sea diver’s boots.

But now I have to mention it because of something weird that happened last night: Richard Branson was clearly out for revenge.

5) City played Wolves.  The match was on the telly…only…it wasn’t…

  • The game was due to start at 19:45. 
  • At 19:40 we lost the signal. 
  • As well as our telephone and internet.
  • Virgin provide our tv, telephone and internet.
  • We were cut off from civilisation.
  • The Hub got on his Pay As You Go mobile to Virgin.
  • He was put on a thirty minute hold, at least.  To compensate for the long wait, Virgin now give you an option to choose your irritating muzak: Press 1 for pop.  Press 2 for urban.  Press 5 for classical. 
  • Seriously?
  • He gave up before his money ran out and dug out the transistor radio instead.
  • Thus it was that the Hub, Spud’s loaner Granddad and three teenage boys listened to City beat Wolves 5 – 2 huddled around an old radio.  It was like being back in Division 2. 
  • The match finished.
  • One minute later…the tv, internet and phone came back on.

Don’t tell me Richard Branson’s not a Red.

Image via Wikipedia

24 Responses to “Virgin United”

  1. earlybird October 27, 2011 at 14:09 #

    How bizarre… definitely some funny business going on there…


  2. Big Al October 27, 2011 at 14:26 #

    Well, “Them that has the gold makes the rules” as the saying goes. Still, that’s the most dastardly, conniving, back-stabbing, cowardly, low-life dirty trick I’ve ever heard of. Kudos to the Hub for his perseverance. We die-hard sports fans are a sorry lot and easy targets for the powerful. The good news is, there’s a special place in heaven for us where all our teams have undefeated seasons and all the games are shutouts.


  3. gigihawaii October 27, 2011 at 16:36 #

    The last time I lost internet, TV and phone was in October 2006 — when we had a colossal earthquake. The whole house shook and we lost power.


  4. Christina Does It All October 27, 2011 at 16:50 #

    hmmm ….suspicious!
    i loved the blog title! 😉


  5. slpmartin October 27, 2011 at 17:00 #

    The whole thing does sound a lot like a evil plot created by Branson…it explains fully those narrow little seats on his airline also…so real room to cheer for the better team.;-)


  6. misswhiplash October 27, 2011 at 17:04 #

    oooh ‘er Mrs there’s cunning for yer


  7. Piglet in Portugal October 27, 2011 at 17:21 #

    I dont follow footie but even I was excited Man C trounced MU. It was about time someone cut them down to size!
    Virgins United is bound to create some buzz in the search engines… still you will have fun see how people find your blog and the search words they used.


    • Tilly Bud October 30, 2011 at 11:09 #

      I confess, I am looking forward to seeing what comes up. 🙂


  8. SchmidleysScribbling October 27, 2011 at 19:18 #

    I enlarged the photos so I could see your family up close.
    I got one red-eyed kid, another scowling and a man looking at the camera who seemed to be thinking, “WTF are you doing?” I can believe you let all these males sit on your furniture without covering it first. Footballers are a dangerous lot, especially with beer and chips.

    PS I know where Manchester is and I even know were Salway is located as I wrote a paper on the textile industry in 19th century Britain last year.

    Also, I know Richard Branson owns Virgin airlines. As for his football likes and dislikes, I never knew (and didn’t care either, but the chick in the red dress has great legs).

    I don’t watch football of any kind. In fact, I never watch sports at all, I am too busy reading. Boring….


    • Tilly Bud October 30, 2011 at 11:14 #

      Where is Salway? I’ve never heard of it. We’re a parochial lot here in Stockport 🙂


  9. sanstorm October 27, 2011 at 19:26 #

    Football: meh.


  10. Lorna's Voice October 27, 2011 at 21:41 #

    Great story and if you want weird search term, you just guaranteed yourself a field day! 😉


  11. Tinman October 27, 2011 at 21:57 #

    I’m pleased to see that you are being gracious in victory, are not rubbing it in, are not drawing the attention of the entire world to it and, all in all, are behaving like a true lady.

    PS Dear entire world, we beat Aldershot (ok, they’re from Division 4) 3-0 on Tuesday, so we’re on the way back.


  12. Tinman October 27, 2011 at 22:00 #

    And PPS, I only ticked “like” because of the girl in the photo with Branson.


    • Tilly Bud October 30, 2011 at 11:18 #

      I didn’t know that about you, Tinman…I’ll have to have a word with Mrs Tin 🙂


  13. colonialist October 27, 2011 at 22:25 #

    It makes you think, doesn’t it? I’m not sure exactly what, though. Maybe that United we fall? Or that Virgins don’t want anything to do with Wolves? 🙂


  14. kateshrewsday October 27, 2011 at 22:41 #

    I have a longstanding feud with Mr Branson. He’s a cad and a bounder.
    And over the football, as I’m sure you will understand, I must remain mute.


    • Tilly Bud October 30, 2011 at 11:26 #

      Let’s agree to disagree, except about Mr B. Those teeth give me the willies.


  15. Kate Kresse October 28, 2011 at 09:16 #

    I would say it was an evil, heinous plot perpetrated by the dastardly Mr. Branson. Fie on him! and congratulations to your beloved team!


  16. eof737 October 29, 2011 at 03:01 #

    I was thinking Virgin Airlines was collaborating with United Airlines… Hmmmm what do I know! 😦


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