Talking Point

West Ham and, er, Bottoms

Guest Post by Guy Nash

Toilet paper is much sought after recently but unfortunately not to thrown onto a fevered football pitch but to stock pile in case of shortage. At times like this it is wise to avoid coughs, splutters and hyperbolic verbal diarrhoea so writing a piece about bottoms and their link with West Ham is my aim today.

Some people seem to “blow bubbles” from either end; indeed the rather vague term flatulence can mean emitting gas from either end of the gut. Depending upon culture and circumstance a fart can be embarrassing or amusing. Both males and females emit about a litre of gas every day largely produced by fermenting bacteria in the colon.
Bear in mind that it is the same gas that causes the colon to pop like a balloon if the bowel becomes blocked. In recent years there have been cases of explosions in theatre during anal surgery. It seems the relaxation of anal muscles in an anaesthetised patient allows the release of methane and hydrogen, which may be inadvertently ignited by a spark from the surgeon’s instruments (electrocautery or LASER); this tends to result in a lot of mess and paperwork to clear it up.

Operating around the bottom is not really everyone’s cup of tea and it still makes me laugh when patients apologise for their bottoms and show pity for me having to look up theirs. I suppose opening their bowels before showing it to us would be ideal; you don’t go to the dentist with a mouth full of toffee after all. The bottom is a fascinating place, it is an amazing achievement to make an organ which can tell between its contents (gas, liquid or solid) let alone expel the gas but not the rest. If you had an upturned bottle and took the cap off, you would not expect to be able to get the gas out without the lot coming out. The bottom is a very complex organ full of exquisitely sensitive nerves. It is the source of desire to some and a source of amusement to most.

Bottoms that misbehave make life difficult for the owner and the surgeon as there is such an assortment of anal maladies (it could be said that rectums, as life, can be like a box of chocolate). The term being ‘anal’ is apt sometimes as some regimented types, especially the military or policemen expect clockwork precise functioning; bothersome bottoms do not ‘sit’ well for the perfectionist. In fact, it can be predicted that if you operate on these bottoms it will not only be judged a failure by the high standards of the owner but all future problems below their waist are yours. For some patients you find that one way to avoid trouble is simply not to operate on them.

The vast majority of bottom problems are due to harmless conditions, but it is essential not to assume this. The classic colorectal assumption was said to have involved the West Ham footballer Bobby Moore, the only English captain to lift the World Cup. He apparently endured the pain of a pile operation but died from the real reason of his bleeding (a rectal cancer) that was subsequently found above this.

After his death I contributed to his biography “Moore than a Legend”.

He was a cockney and it was ironic that his England team mate Nobby Stiles became cockney rhyming slang for piles. Everybody should remember Bobby Moore in future (in addition to his class as a footballer and unflappable demeanour) to avoid the same pile pitfall.

This is the bottom line so please encourage others to see a doctor if you bleed from your bottom; it is better for them to put their finger in it than put their foot in it.

How I Became a Hammer

I Blame Jimmy Greaves

Guest Post by John Bayfield

In my much younger years during the mid/late 1960’s, the kids next door to me were all Spurs supporters. I didn’t pick any particular team to follow at the time so I went with the neighbours’ lot. Spurs were doing quite well most of the time in that era so all the talk was of Pat Jennings, Alan Gilzean, Cyril Knowles, etc. My favourite player though was Jimmy Greaves be it either watching him for Tottenham or England. So when Mr. Greaves got tangled up in the Martin Peters West Ham/Tottenham transfer situation in March 1970, my club allegiance was tested until a few weeks later, my 13 year old self changed colours to the claret and blue of West Ham United. My friends next door wondered why would I leave a club that was consistently pushing for titles and cups for a team that was always behind them in the old first division. Jimmy Greaves was the reply.

A typical goal poacher, his scoring record (at MOST of his clubs) was up there with the best. I suppose I thought he could do it for the Hammers as well. Not so.
But I was determined to keep with West Ham no matter what. As luck would have it, a kids’ team I played for at the time arranged a trip to see West Ham play Liverpool at Upton Park on March 28th 1970. Among the crowd of 38,200, we made our way to the rear of the North Bank. Being a six foot teenager had it’s advantages and I managed to watch Pat Holland score the only goal of the game in front of the South Stand past Ray Clemence in the fifth minute. From that game/day out onwards West Ham were my team, Jimmy Greaves or not.

The team that day was; Peter Grotier, Bobby Moore, Alan Stephenson, Bobby Howe, Billy Bonds, Frank Lampard, Peter Bennett, Peter Eustace, Pat Holland, Jimmy Greaves and Geoff Hurst.

Jimmy Greaves left the club the following year in 1971, not even making 18 months with us. I didn’t though and this year, March 2020 will be my 50th year supporting West Ham United.

Thanks Jimmy.

Talking Point

Help a Fellow Hammer

West Ham United is not just a football team. It is a community and we are all proud to be part of it. Communities help their own. Earlier today, while I was on the air at LBC I received an email from a West Ham supporting listener, Graham. He wrote…

I was wondering if you could help in any way with my brothers go fund me page as he is a die hard West Ham man through n through,any help would be much appreciated.
All the best

I clicked on the GoFundMe page and read about what had happened to him.

We are raising funds to help John continue his ongoing health needs and life after hospital. As many of you may know, John was attacked, left in the street for dead. He was attacked for his phone and a little bit of shopping he had nipped out to buy. Had it not have been for a passerby finding him, he wouldn’t be here today. He was taken to hospital where he was transferred to a specialist unit at the Royal London, he was in a coma for 3 weeks, and a result of their care and his spirit, he came out of the coma. However, little did we know then what the extent of his injuries would be – we knew from the doctors if he survived it would be life changing, and it is. He has a severe brain injury, which means he will never be able to work again, nor live on his own. This happened in February 2019, and John has spent the last year in hospitals and rehabilitation. He now needs to have 24 hour care within a care home. When he moves into a home, he will need to furnish , and contribute towards his care needs. None of this will come cheap, so we are fund raising to help him start this new chapter in his life. Any help we can get him will be greatly appreciated, by John and all of us as we help him move on from this nightmare that has changed our life’s forever. Thank you in advance from John and family xx

I’ve made a small donation and I hope you all will too. Please donate HERE

Parish Notice

Parish Notice: So What Shall We Do For Three Weeks? Or More...

Given there’s not going to be any football for at least three weeks – and I suspect more like a few months – so that leads me to think how we can possibly survive. No, I don’t mean we’re all going to die and we’re all doomed (a la Corporal Jones. Younger reads nay need to google him), I mean how can this site survive when there’s no football to discuss? Well, we do it for a couple of months at the end of every season, I suppose, so it shouldn’t be too difficult. However, this somehow feels different. I am serious when I say the shutdown could last for many months. People I talk to in government reckon the peak might not be reached until June or July. This is going to affect all our lives, and people will react to it all in very different ways. I know from my radio show that it’s already affecting some people’s mental health and is adding to many people’s feelings of anxiety. I know this site has become a bit of a community over the years, especially among people who comment regularly. So I think WHTID can be of help in keeping us all sane as we wonder what the future holds.

What I do not want is for the site to become a discussion zone about Coronavirus itself. This is not the place for that. Fine, discuss it as it affects West Ham, football and even sport in general, but please let’s avoid long-winded discussions about conspiracy theories, the medical aide of it or the government’s response or lack of it. I’m not being censorious, I promise, but that sort of stuff belongs elsewhere.

What the site needs over the next few weeks or months is a revival of the Guest Post. I’m going to try to post more myself, but I really want there to be a new article each day on the site. I’ve recruited a new writer, Michael Lee, who will post every other Wednesday, but as you can imagine there are going to be a lot of gaps in the schedule. I know Dan Coker will step up to the plate as he always does. GoatyGav has Tuesdays covered and I’m hoping Nigel will do an article each Thursday. I’d love HamburgHammer to continue to cover Mondays. Gary Hyams has become an appreciated regular too but that still leaves at least a couple of weekly slots to cover. We need to figure out what Jeff Gayle and David Hautzig can write about too, given there won’t be any matches to preview or report on.

Many years ago we did a feature called HOW I BECAME A HAMMER. Perhaps we should revive that, and you can call relate how you came to support the Mighty Irons.


So if any of you would like to write Guest Posts please just email your article to me via the Contact Box at the top of the page and I’ll stack them up.

Book Review

Match Thread: Arsenal v West Ham

Arsenal v West Ham
FA Premier League
The Emirates
KO: 3pm
TV: None

Please use this thread to comment on the match as it progresses

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