It's been a while since I've been tempted to write a whingeing article and it was this week's announcement of the winning world cup bids for 2018 and 2022 which brought me out of hibernation.
Now, as an Englishman, you might scoff and claim that I am a disgruntled fan who is suffering from an acute bout of sour grapes but I'm being honest when I say that I didn't want England to win the bid in the first place.
As a passionate Hull City fan, it was a kick in teeth to find that those powerhouses of third-tier football, Plymouth and Milton Keynes were awarded 'host city' status in the English bid, especially when Milton Keynes didn't even have a football team until they stole one from Wimbledon six years ago. It was even more insulting when my local Morrisons was asking for customers to sign up to 'back the bid'.
Needless to say, I walked past muttering mild profanities under my breath, my favourite course of action in these situations. But apart from this, the main reason that I didn't want England to win the bid was because we are far too arrogant as a nation when it comes to situations like this.
You could tell that every member of the bid team was adamant that the England bid was the best and I suppose there is a chance that it was, but surely it would be much more English to be humble about it.
So, to return to my original point, why am I so angry about the outcome of the bids?
It's all down to the fact that the two winning countries were the ones with the least footballing history but most disposable income.
However, having said that, it's not the Russians winning that angers me the most. Russia is the biggest country in the world, has the seventh highest ranked league system in Europe (behind the big four, France and Portugal) and regularly has teams in contention for European titles. To be honest, I'm surprised they haven't hosted a world cup in the past, and if it wasn't for the rumours of so much money changing hands, I'd say they were worthy winners.
However, it's the awarding of the tournament to Qatar which brings the most bile to my throat. Here are the facts: Qatar is smaller than the Falkland Islands and has never appeared at the world cup finals.
The national team is ranked 113th in the world by FIFA and will surely be the lowest-ranked nation to ever host the competition in eight years' time. The first Qatari football club was established only 60 years ago with what else but oil companies founding the first national competition.
On top of Qatar's footballing pedigree, human liberty (or lack of) is another issue.
Women only received the vote in 1999 and for every person who points out that women are now legally allowed to drive (how forward-thinking), there are many more who point out that homosexuality is illegal and that the death penalty is still in force.
Much has been made in the press this week that the games for the 2022 World Cup will have to be played in air-conditioned stadiums. Temperatures in the summer in Qatar can exceed 40íC but it is not just the players that will need respite from the blistering heat.
What about the tens of thousands of fans converging on each game? Where will they escape the heat in the middle of summer between games?
The anticipated problems with the heat will only lead to speculation that FIFA may move the dates of the tournament to the northern hemisphere's winter. Now a person with only a passing interest in football may see this as the perfect solution, however, this would cause a significant problem to the vast majority of the world's major football leagues including those of England, Spain, Italy and Germany whose seasons run from August to May and I personally cannot see the likes of Chelsea and Real Madrid willing to lose potentially their entire first team for a month or more.
Judging by the rumours flying around about bribes and bungs, I would not be surprised if FIFA president, Sepp Blatter, announced the switch closer to the time with a sickening smile on his smug face and a wad of Qatari riyals spilling out of his pocket.
You see, this is the real problem with football. It's not that FIFA want to expand the game to new areas. If that was the case (and it would be noble if it were), FIFA would bankroll the tournament in enthusiastically fanatic but poorer countries in South America or Africa, and they would surely not have taken away the opportunity for countries to present a joint bid (like that of Japan and South Korea in 2002) which had been disallowed at the time of the bids for this year's world cup in South Africa.
The real problem is that the whole world has to pander to the whims of a select band of 24 men and, in particular, the wishes of Sepp Blatter himself.
The very first football association was formed in 1863 in England. The laws of the game were drawn up by Ebenezer Cobb Morley, a man from Hull (a fact which should have been all the FA needed to select the KC Stadium as a host venue) and much was made of the desire for all involved to ensure that football was a game played by the people, watched by the people and run by the people.
How far from that ideal we have come? We have been aware for some time that football as an industry is corrupt but this latest tabloid outrage will hopefully expose just how far this corruption reaches. Football has too much money; too few people have a disproportionate amount of power; and those in power are so detached from the people who fund their bank balances, the fans.
Whilst the rest of the world bemoans that the world's top footballers earn too much money, that ticket prices are too high and that referees will never make all of the right decisions without the assistance of technology, Sepp Blatter, a man whose own track record in business is questionable to say the least, sits in his ivory tower, counting his riches, knowing nothing of the game of football itself and looking down on the little people, wondering how they could ever be so unhappy watching rich people enjoy themselves.
Never has there been a better reason for revolution within football. To replace Blatter with someone who had grown up within football would be one idea but there will never be a proper revolution as long as Blatter's cronies remain in FIFA.
Maybe the answer would be to form a new world governing body. If this happened, any team that defected would be immediately ineligible for FIFA tournaments, including the world cup and it may lead to a worldwide split into two camps, one of traditional footballing nations like England and France, and one of developing associations such as Russia and Qatar.
Whatever happens, it is clear that more people need a greater say in the running of the game.
Whether that means having a representative from every member association on the board at FIFA in place of Blatter and his barons or having a pre-agreed, automated process for deciding world cup bids, I don't think that any regular football fan could deny that the game is in need of rapid change.
Personally, I would not be happy until Blatter is removed from his throne and replaced by real football people who live and breathe the game, until a salary cap is enforced in every nation for all football-related professions and until the rest of FIFA sees through Blatter's insistence that technology would remove the game from its roots and recognise this as a transparent ploy to make him seem in touch with those who pay his wages.
I am a football fan but I've never been given the opportunity to register my dissatisfaction with the way the game is run. Maybe if FIFA was a democratic institution, we would all believe in it a little bit more.
Football is the world's greatest game but as with all good things, it's being ruined by money. If only those of 1863 could see us now. What would Ebenezer Cobb Morley say?
Opinions - Merry Christmas From Hull City Council Or Hull Not Fair By Dave Fox
I haven't had a whinge for quite a while now but recently something caught my attention and forced me to put pen to paper.
I've never really had a problem with Hull City Council despite them squandering my money on fibre-glass frogs and turning rush hour into a nightmare by putting road-works on most of our main roads all at the same time.
Whilst stuck in traffic yesterday I noticed a poster issued by Hull City Council which on first glance
Opinions - Big and Daft? By Dobski
A case of Natural Selection?
A question I've often asked myself is, and don't take this literally, but generally, are you less likely to be intelligent, the bigger your physical stature? We've all heard the saying, 'The larger the collar, the lower the IQ!', right?
Reasons I have thought this are ... when you look around at the jobs most big people do, they are usually something that demands a big person. Jobs like doorman
Opinions - Doing Drugs With Your Kids (Is It totally Wrong?) By Dobski
This idea may seem abhorrent at first thought and to most concerned, it probably is beyond even question, but let's think about it a bit.
Of course no-one in their right mind would endorse a combination of mother/father-son/ daughter sat in some squalid flat 'jacking' each other up, or passing a crack-pipe back and forth. To indulge in either of these substances at any age or situation is a path to almost inevitable destruction,
Opinions - Who Were You? By Dobski
Rock 'n' Roll, Teddy-boys, Hippies, Mods and Rockers, Punk, Hip-Hop, Rave, just some of the globally recognised scenes popular culture has spawned since the birth of recorded music as we know it. Scenes created, nurtured, often by a few, picked up on by the masses, and willfully adopted worldwide.
Most members of previous generations can instantly identify, when asked, which of these cults/ movements they associated themselves with as a youth.
Opinions - Arrest The Pope! By Christopher Skolik
To purposefully put out mad and dangerous notions; ('No Condoms, Death is Good, Sahame and Guilt that would seem to lead to Institutional Paedophilia'; do I need to go on here?) as FACTUAL - should be certainly criminal.
He can think this utter tosh, but it should be qualified with a psychological health warning, eg. 'No evidence - may lead to AIDS and mass starvation, lead normal male sezuality into twisted paedophilia', maybe.
Look into his eyes - or those of JP2.
Opinions - Jon Venables: Better a Monster than a No Mark? By Christopher Skolik
Thompson and Venables where already 'monsters' when they met James Bulger. That much is clear. Everyone is agreed on that. Circumstances had left the two 10 year olds so numb that self induced trauma was all they had left.
After the events on the railway track the nation was shocked - but we could have started screening for similar kids. We know the signs, but we howled, and baptised
Opinions - East Riding Writers By Jan Mc Geachie
Perhaps you can solve the mystery of why there is little here to help promote writers here in East Riding?
To enter the New Writing North awards you have to live in Tyne and Wear, the Tees Valley, County Durham or Northumberland. Signposts only have Writers Resource Centres in Sheffield Barnsley and Rotherham. NAWG lists nine writers clubs in Yorkshire, the largest county in England - yet the Wolds remains a literary wilderness.
Opinions - An Ordinary Blokes Blog By Gary Clark
Why am I worried at my age in life? I've been quite successful so far, for an Endike lad. I say that because nothing much was expected of us when were turfed out of school at 15 with a limited education under our belts. Although we did not realise it at the time, until it was too late.
You see we were all in the same boat. No-one knew any better, that's what we did; suffered the boringness of a Secondary school education, then followed our older
Opinions - The Green Electrek Power Company By David Sloan
A radical answer to mass unemployment, endemic obesity and the clean energy crisis.Benefits
Full employment. Cheap green electricity. Reduced oil and gas imports. Higher government tax revenues. Income for all people, regardless of educational skills. Healthier people, fitter people, less overweight people. Less social destitution, less heart disease, less mental health problems, less diabetes.
The NHS now spends £3000 a second on people
Opinions - Wacko Jacko RIP By Christopher Skolik
Since the death of Michael Jackson there has been much chatter about how we should forget the more troubling aspects and focus on the music.
To me that seems wrong headed and a waste!
His life may arguably prove the real art of this individual; he had the means and the psychology to change reality, and his physicality.
Like a Batman villain, living in a fun house as though a Scooby Doo phantom, drawing on the collective unconscious and its pop culture references,
Opinions - Hull City Council and the Concrete Jungle
Thought I'd share my thoughts with you over the council putting a car park where LAs is/was.
Glad to see our creative and pro-active council always thinking of exciting new ways to develop the city. Another car park will be great for the city: with more cars coming into the city centre we could employ some more traffic wardens creating more jobs and more revenue for the council.
Please don't pretend that
Opinions - Was Bob Quick 'Blunder' A Deliberate Smokescreen? By Michelle Dee
By now we will all have seen the disturbing images of Ian Tomlinson, the victim of an unprovoked assault by a police officer at the G20 Protest last weekend. Unlucky for the Metropolitan Police Force, news crews were filming at the time and caught the incident on camera.
Watching the Guardian's footage you can clearly see the officer stepping forward and the moment when the unsuspecting Ian Tomlinson
Opinions - COOL ! By Andrew Wastling
I woke up feeling optimistic about the future of the planet for the first time in many years
After eight wasted years of what amounts to government by a fascist junta of gangsters, crooks and warmongers - perhaps we can all hope that the US under Obama will now take a more progressive road and a lead on the environment for a change?
Opinions - Barack Obama By Lee Cassanell
Civilisations rise and fall. People live and people die but sometimes we are lucky enough to bear witness to moments of great historical significance, moments of pure hope and optimism for a better world and a better tomorrow.
The election of Senator Barack Obama has renewed my belief in the American public and the American ideal. It has renewed my belief that no matter who you are or were you come from,
Opinions - Dating Nightmare Part 2 By Leah Scarpati
I'm pleased to say that I have a different slant on the subject now. I'm so fickle...all it takes is a month of dating with a TDH rugby playing fireman and the dating garden's all rosy!
All the time I was complaining about the crap first dates with guys I very easily found something wrong with (often when there probably wasn't actually anything wrong with them); I wasn't really thinking too far ahead.
Opinions - Dating Nightmare Part 1 By Leah Scarpati
Why is dating such a nightmare?! I must admit I haven't really been on that many successful dates; I've only had 2 long-term relationships and 3 half-arsed attempts at them that didn't last more than five minutes. So in between those I've been on enough dates to be suitably apprehensive about how they'll turn out.
I've found that in my experience they go
Opinions - USA Neocon Maniacs are at it again, duping the lying western media propaganda machine with lies by Mo.
US backed ( 1000 marines advising, commandos and mercenaries)forces of Georgia ( birthplace of Stalin), sneak attacked Russian Peace Keeping Troops Thursday evening killing thousands of civilians (Over 2000 civilians are reported killed
). Under distraction of Beijing Olympics, Dick Cheney may well be heading the Neocon maniacs into new war fronts setting up for another cold war, diverting media attention from the disastrous economic situation in the USA.
Opinions - Mary Poppins, I Ain't! By Leah Scarpati
I may sound like an old spinster woman but I'm convinced I can drum up a following on this one. I was at the gym tonight (trying to work out) and I'll admit, was bloody knackered by the time I got to the changing rooms.
I'd had a crap day at work and all I wanted to do was chill out. Cue - screaming kids in the changing room. So I decided to escape