|TS Eliot and the Football Waste Land|
Written by monty_radio on Thursday, 10th May 2018 13:17
April is the cruellest month – or so TS Eliot once said back in 1922, the year of the publication of his poem, The Waste Land, when the FA Cup final was done-and-dusted by the end of April.
As the cruel close season hove into gloomy view Eliot was obviously feeling the empty, summer dread of the coming months without footie. No summer World Cup back then!
He was not known as a fan, but perhaps, in his secret sighing heart he too counted the days until the new season arrived and grappled with the disappointment of the def info purveyors of muddied truth who set his heart racing with news that Herbert Chapman was on his way out of Arsenal to his beloved Clapton Orient only to find it was any old Herbert but that one.
To judge by the black-and-white, hats-in-the-air pictures in those days, a steward was someone still working in a baronial hall - so no chance of picking up def info there.
The NHS had yet to rise and sink so that other well-known nursing source of def info was much thinner on the ground back there also. He did have his own sources, someone he mysteriously referred to as Madame Sosotris, famous clairvoyante, but apparently she was no use because she had a bad cold.
It is a little known fact that Eliot, real name Thomas Stearns Eliot, one bored May day, adopted the cover name TS Eliot in order to post def info himself in the various literary periodicals of the day. In The Waste Land he floats the possible signing of Stamm, but gets the spelling wrong – strange for such a knowledgeable chap.
As the summer signings failed to materialise Eliot expresses concern that his goalie couldn’t trust the back four, posting such further thoughts as “Exploring hands encounter no defence”.
Eliot, like so many of his def info ilk, ends up using his new disguise as 'TS' just to post nonsense, calling for the signing of foreign internationals like Datta and Damyata who may, or may not, be any good, with no explanation whatsoever. Simply signing off with a chant of Shatih, Shantih, Shantih will never convince anyone who’s never heard of their great season they may have just had in Japan's J-League.
But, in the end, Eliot failed miserably to be taken seriously as a poster with that genuine insider-information feel and drifted into following ever more obscure non-league teams such as East Coker and Little Gidding where he could write what he liked and nobody understood him or talked about him anymore.
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