|Too Many Suspects? – A Swede Ramble|
Written by monty_radio on Monday, 29th Apr 2019 22:48
Town have finally dropped through the beckoning trapdoor – but who to blame? Rev Evans with the peeling candlestick? Colonel McCarthy with the fraying rope? Captain Keane with the poisoned dart? Professor Paul with his own interpretation of chaos theory?
Or do the roots of the deed go deeper? Has the very pitch itself been poisoned by that malignant growth we call contemporary football?
If you had to identify the one murderer who ought to swing for our decline you would doubtless be able to finger a culprit who ought to bear the brunt. After all, it’s inherently dissatisfying to blame “a raft of circumstances” as modern parlance has it, rather than simply feel the bad guy’s collar.
Yet if, to take an example, you build a housing estate on low-lying ground in a potential flood-plain at a time of rising sea-levels, and then wonder where to apportion blame for the resultant catastrophe, the raft idea might be useful, both as an idea and a mode of escape.
So, how far back is it legitimate to delve in our quest to get to the bottom of the matter, not to mention the league? Just over four years ago Town sat atop the pile. Was it right then and there that the first steps to a life of grime were taken?
My step-dad, of blessed memory, was in hospital in those January days. As he drifted in-and-out of awareness I tried to cheer him with news that Town had gone top since he’d been there on the ward. His reply was a good old Suffolk utterance of “No!!” – not incredulity, you understand, but rather a firm affirmation that I’d simply got it wrong.
As it turned out he was right, though sadly he never recovered to remind me of it. Marcus got the chequebook out and signed somebody or other, and we were done. And have been since.
Some people opt for the prosaic but sensible suggestion that time has simply caught up with a club that doesn’t have a rich millionaire, just a pleasantly, hard-working, invisible one. Today, it is said, it’s a matter of moneybags, not a small brown envelope – even one with a five-year plan scribbled on the back.
Then there’s that well-known sixties group Mick and the Numbskulls (or Numskull, if you get your vocabulary from the Beano). Like most groups that make music together for any length of time, the front-man and the band fell out. The dispute got vocal and violent.
Investigating the numbers involved reveals prejudice in the witnesses. Just how many num(b)skulls do you need to smash a light-bulb? And was the light-bulb already hanging by a thread? And was it now generating more heat than light? And if things had been done in an ever-so careful way, what would one have wished for etc, etc?
Then there were the procession of ever-so nice Ipswich Town spokespersons, affable be-suited folk; mouthpieces who remained untainted by any undesirable developments in the modern game, mainly due to not knowing that the game was called football, and was quite popular in the Ipswich area and not a few other areas beside. Their evidence was pleasantly vague, although it did have quite a few bullet points to it.
Drawing a veil over the great misdemeanour done to our once great football club, and also over the wishing that I carelessly indulged in, if I were a bona fide pundit, given to thought-provoking pronouncement, I might well now be moved to sum it all up as follows: “It is what it is!” Solemn words indeed.
Yet who better to encapsulate the probe for the truth at the heart of such a momentous demise as Ipswich Town’s than the great Inspector Clouseau himself as he gives us his priceless, positive declaration: “I suspect everyone, and I suspect no-one."
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