Monthly Archives: March 2011

GMOAI Style: Shoe Obsessed.

Originally posted on General Musings of an Idiot.

So, after blogs about Elbow, BBC News School Report, and Formula 1, it was about time I filled in the last of those headings above. (Up there. See them? Good.) So returning tonight is GMOAI Style.

As we’ve found out before, I’m hardly the most stylish fella. I buy pea green jumpers. Alas, I have a tendency to get drawn in to certain things – jumpers, watches, and SHOES. Lovely lovely shoes.

So what do I reckon we should buy this coming season?

Well, as we’ve seen in every fashion magazine known to man, brogues are back big time for blokes. Specifically colourful ones.

These have to be my faves. These Paul Smith Miller Cobalt Brogues are just gorgeous. They look like they’ve been to Avatar and back. They even have a powdered blue sole – amazing. These are from the official website, for £235.

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Or how’s about stone? You can get these KG by Kurt Geiger Saint Suede Brogues in so many colours – you may have spotted the advert about with a rainbow of shoes. They’re beautiful creations – to be fair, anything from Kurt Geiger would do it for me. These can be pur-chased on the Kurt Geiger website, for a mere £125. Totally worth it.

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These Vivienne Westwood Tizer shoes are more like a pair of smart shoes, but they’re vaguely brogue-y. So it was about time you got to see their wonderfulness. Normally, non-matching shoes don’t go down a treat, but the blue, khaki and pink shoes are larvley. A bit of an investment, at £285, and you can get them from Viv’s official website.

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But that doesn’t mean the classics aren’t still cool. These grey Rolando Sturlini’s are gorgeous. You’ll have to excuse the dirt on the sole – don’t blame me… They’re £160, and you can find them here on ASOS.

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How about some very posh Jeffrey Wests? These Two-Tone Brogues, from the Black Line collection, come in stone, and are rather delicious. You could eat these. These are 140 quid, but for a decent meal, that’s fair enough. Available on ASOS, I believe.

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These are Ellington New Dye Grey Wingcap Brogues, from H by Hudson, and they’re from their official website too. Sleek is a word for them. The kinda shoe you’d imagine George Clooney to wear. It’d match his hair. Those dreamy eyes……. Shit. Blog, yes. They’re £75, and Clooney is my man crush. Easy.

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All a little steep? These ASOS Wingcap Pointed Brogues aren’t in-keeping with what we’ve seen so far, but these are a snip at £28, whilst on sale. Black, simple, smart, and very, very cool. They’re available on ASOS. Obviously.

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Or these tan leather brogues? They are perfectly on trend – will look great with chinos too, ironically, also in trend. Which rock have you been living under? They’re £66.99, and available from Office.

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Here’s another pair I really like – they’re called Micro Sole Saddle Shoes, and you can get them from ASOS too. They’re very similar to the Viv Westwood’s. Very different – tan and navy leather. They’re 40 squigglies.

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And here’s a shocker – something Adam likes from Next, of all places. These Brogue Lace-Ups, at £50, are lovely, and bang-on trend. Really nice, and come in three colours. These in the teeny-weeny pic are again, stone. Go buy here.

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And for a nicely rounded £69.50, you can pick up these Suede Two-Tone brogues, from the Collezione collection at M&S. Fashionable, and relatively cheap. Leather and suede?! Well, there’s a posh man’s wet dream… All yours when you click here.

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But my favourite pair? Like, my absolute FAVOURITE pair of shoes, in the whole entire world?

KG by Kurt Geiger Covent Wingcaps. Not quite brogues, but I couldn’t care. I could write a post on bloody espadrilles, and these would appear. They’re 90 quid, but I’d pay what it takes to own these. So simple, but so beautifully made even Eva Longoria would be kissing my feet. And she is gorgeous. Again, available at Kurt Geiger, and soon to appear on my feet.

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So that’s my ‘short’ guide on this season’s brogues, and what to buy for your ever-increasing, or in my case, ever-decreasing budget. I’d like every one of these. If you feel like buying me a birthday present, pick one. I won’t bite. Promise.

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An Open Letter to The FA Chairman David Bernstein

Originally posted on General Musings of an Idiot.

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Dear Mr Bernstein,

As a fan of football, both here in the UK and worldwide, I believe it is within my right to express my deep concern regarding the current circumstances surrounding football within the Premier League.

We have seen time and time again this season referees making poor decisions, based on players getting involved and influencing decisions, cheating and diving, poor offside decisions and what looks like biased refereeing towards certain teams. A referee is there to keep the peace, and to be the decision maker, in order to keep the game fair. How can they be keeping it fair when bad decisions are strewn throughout the game? Yes, there may be mistakes from referees, but when it becomes apparent that these mistakes are in every game, something needs to change.

We have seen Wayne Rooney get away with elbowing a fellow professional in the head, of which you commented that ‘if the referee states he has seen the incident the FA is not able to make decisions except in exceptional circumstances‘. If the FA takes no action towards incidents like this, then we are just telling youngsters involved in grassroots football that when the referee’s back is turned, you can get away with anything. Is this the message we want to portray?

Referees seem to be feeling the pressure this season, and plenty of poor decisions have been made. So much so, that Mark Clattenberg, once deemed one of the best refs in the game, has earned the nickname ‘Mark Clangerberg’. Even today, during the Sunderland vs. Liverpool game, we saw a penalty, that was a free-kick, which the referee was going to rightly award. However, when the linesman hadn’t kept up with play, flagged and then changed his mind to a penalty, the referee followed suit, and gave a penalty, which changed the match. How can this be deemed acceptable? When a team lose a crucial 3 points because a team of officials can’t get the decisions right?

It seems that with referees constantly making the correct decisions for years, we forgot to give the praise necessary. Instead, we concentrated on the bad mistakes, and the mass media has enforced this. Admittedly, we don’t give referees the recognition they deserve after a superb game, but when they have poor, indecisive games, the bad press is deserved. If we don’t hear via the press and the TV from the referees, as is currently banned by the FA and the Premier League, then how are we, as fans, meant to award the praise when they are not allowed to justify their decisions? It seems a very stupid, pointless rule to me.

All clubs in the Premier League, and throughout the Football League, strive to reach their dream of European football, and the financial windfall can be the difference between survival or administration, as we have seen in Portsmouth’s case. However, the joys of football fans, such as Tottenham’s continuing pursuit in the Champions League, goes to show quite how necessary it is for the English football league system to keep its four Champions League spots. With UEFA President Michael Platini trying to tear that fourth spot away and handing it to the winners of the FA Cup, one team will miss out, and the Big Four of Arsenal, Manchester United, Chelsea and Liverpool will continue to be the dominant forces in football. The most exciting seasons seem to be those where other teams make the grade, like Spurs and Man City, so losing that opportunity for European football would be catastrophic to the fans. We need to strengthen our ties with both UEFA and FIFA, and make sure that these proposals never take flight, keeping our football the way we like it.

Not only that, but with FIFA being one of the most corrupt organisations in world sport, we have to ensure that this does not filter through to our own national governing body. Your proposal to ensure two impartial, independent members on the Board of Directors of The FA will give more opportunity for fair proposals and reforms can be made that will benefit not only the Premier League, but the Football League, and amateur and grassroots football too. Adding two directors will not, however, make a difference to what we currently have, but will only impact on the future of football, so something needs to be done now as well.

International football is key to how the FA runs. However, had £798m not been spent on Wembley Stadium, we wouldn’t have to have constant friendlies and international breaks. I am yet to find one manager who agrees with the international breaks that have to happen in order to gain that money back. The Millennium Stadium cost £121m, and is one of the best sporting facilities I have ever visited. How can Wembley have cost so much? A poor investment, if you ask me.

With England having to play these friendlies, we expect the best from our team. When you don’t even see the 11 players, representing their country, staying silent during the National Anthem – then you know that something is wrong. There are 51 million people in England, the majority of who are very proud of their English heritage, and belt out the National Anthem at any given opportunity. These footballers, who earn in excess of £100,000 a week, should be banned from representing their country if they believe they are above the rest of us, and don’t sing our anthem. They clearly do not care enough about representing us on an international stage. You don’t see international teams, where the average wage of each player is below £10,000, not singing their anthem, becasue they see representing their coutnry as a privilege, and not as somehting else to add to the CV.

I do agree that the best manager available should fill Fabio Capello’s shoes when he leaves after Euro 2012. But we know full well that foreign managers don’t work, and nor do rushed decisions. Look at Sven, and Steve McLaren. These decisions should be made soon, and involve not only the FA Board, but the players, and those who truly run football – the fans. The only way to inject life back into international football is to make the fans feel that they too are playing for England, and if by involving them in big, monumental decisions, we increase crowds and increase interaction with the team, then that is how it should be done.

Instead of spending time arguing whether or not to ban snoods, we should be spending time working out how to reform football and the Premier League to ensure a fair official, male or female, is assigned to each game, who can keep a game under control and get the decisions right 100% of the time. We need to make sure the decisions that affect our game are made based on sufficient evidence, and backed by a number of senior officials who represent the clubs of our nation. We need to make international football something to be proud of, rather than just to keep the meter ticking over. And we have to make sure that the players playing our game are those of a professional demeanour – wanting to play football because they love it, not because of the money involved. Ultimately though, we have to make the fans of the Beautiful Game to feel as if the players are playing for them. The game is being played for them. And that football is a sport for them. Too much of our sport is about money now, and we need to get it back to the glory days when players played to see smiles in the crowd, not the number of zero’s on their pay slip.

Yours Sincerely,

Adam Mills

A Fan of Football

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Food Revolution #187 – Mexican

Originally posted on My Food Revolution.

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Theme night! Was good too – despite lunch at half 3. Nachos, fajitas and tacos, and I also enjoyed some breados and butterita. Or bread and butter to me and you.

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International Women’s Day. And All That.

Originally posted on General Musings of an Idiot.

Today is a day celebrating everything great about women. To be fair, that’s about 3 and a half billion people. Half the world’s population, funnily enough.

IWD was set up in order to recognise the achievements of women, and the day celebrates 100 years this year. It was initially set up to commemorate 129 women who were locked in a factory and burnt down, because they were campaigning for their rights. Now, it celebrates everything rgeat about the other sex, and how amazing an achievement it is for women.

But, what about blokes? Well, when we rustle up enough brain cells to think of this, you’ll understand why the day was set up anyway…

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Yes, men with their hilarious sense of sexist humour. Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for a bit of sexist banter, but the ‘Make me a sandwich, bitch’ joke wears a bit thin after a while. And 50 years later, it’s still going strong.

Why should women be chained to the kitchens to make you a sandwich? Why is it funny for women to have to iron, wash, and clean everything before even sitting down? Why can’t women ever be rich and famous without being stoopid? I honestly don’t understand how laughing at the other gender in such a hurtful way can be funny…

It’s like women turning round to us men and telling us before we have that next pint, it’s time to take the dog for a walk. Or before we settle down to a nice pie, we have to hoover the whole house, and go to work – again. Or even before the football is on the telly, being told that Coronation Street is on the other side and the football will have to be recorded. Trust me, that last one really isn’t funny.

Again, I’m not a complete twat with no sense of humour. But I just don’t get why laughing at what women have done for themselves in the last 100 years to ditch the stereotypes stipulated to their gender is so hilarious.

I’m a massive, massive advocate for equal rights. It shouldn’t matter whether you’re gay, straight, black, white, rich, poor, foreign, or male or female, everyone is still a human being. We all have to look out for each other, not hating another group of people just because of who they are. Things like The Trevor Project, who campaign for LGBT rights have helped make a huge difference to the lives of millions.

Many women died to try and gain their gender the vote, and in 1918/1928 that was granted in the UK, and in 1919 in the US. Campaigns for equal pay, basic human rights and equality throughout jobs markets are still going strong, despite the huge void between men and women being cut drastically. At least they had the balls to stand up for what they believed in. And I fully respect them, and back them with this. Women are, to me, my second favourite gender, after all. Only because I am a man.

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So, Happy International Women’s Day to one and all. Also, Happy Pancake Day. And based on my views, I shall be making my girlfriend pancakes at some stage this week. I may even carve ‘IWD’ into the top of each one, just to prove a point.

Because if we can’t look after each other, no matter what we are, then who can? We’ve got to make a difference now to make sure our children, and our children’s children can live in a world where there is equality for all, no matter who you are.

Agree with me? Drop me a comment using the boxes below, or you can send me an email. Or, if you’re really keen, Tweet me. I’m all ears to see what you guys and gals believe too.

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