When Talking Tottenham was launched on the 19th September two years ago. It seemed a good way of getting to know the members of the recently formed India Spurs and visa versa. A simple magazine type piece gathering together the pieces of news that might have slipped through the net. Well not all of us spend twenty three hours a day scanning every news outlet possible. It also pulled together trivia, stats and the quirky.
It was all done very firmly with a sense of fun, well every Spurs fan needs one of them. TT changed format and style several times to try and keep it fresh and different from the endless stream of other articles that appear across the web.
This image, from last year, was one of not just my favourites it also struck a cord with a number of readers. It just made me smile. Still don't know who the artist or model are.
TT does take a fair bit of effort at times and at the end of last season I invited the readers to contribute their thoughts of any future it may have. Well I was delighted when they both took up the challenge. One of the overriding points was that amongst the various piffle I managed to squeeze in (accidentally I confess) some items that were actually quite interesting and should not be lost in the vast wastelands on the internet of time gone by. Thus was born the idea of recycling and having a greatest hits!
Being serious for one moment we have actually built up a reasonable readership based largely on word of keyboard. We have attracted people from South America, Europe, and chunks of Asia at various times. For some reason the Indian Spurs supporters seem redundant to chip in or comment. I mean no offense but living in this country I find it amazing as the male of the species tends to blabber on endless on most subjects. So here and not always in a totally serious manner, we arrive at ‘Volume One of the Best of Talking Tottenham.’ Pause for Fanfare.
Feel free to leave a comment and everyone wherever is welcome. Please include where you are, how long you have followed the spurs (if you do!). Right, you can feel to enjoy yourself. I'm now I’m off to reread every Talking Tottenham. I must have done something wrong in a former life!!
The highlight of that first season was the interview with Marina Sirtis, Do visit the article if you haven’t seen it. ( link - http://www.indiaspurs.com/blog/talking-tottenham-with-marina-sirtis ) It was an absolute pleasure, she was bright cheerful and very passionate about Spurs. We even got to see her tattoo. What can I say, any woman who can make an old man that happy and not be in the same time zone must be special.
Then there was the story about Jermain Defoe setting up a charitable foundation with the government of St Lucia and existing organisations to raise money to build a new children’s home on the island where his mother originates from.
Early on I recalled the first Tottenham player I ever spoke to, even if I was too young to really understand. That was Ted Ditchburn. One day without warning I was taken by an uncle to meet the great man. Knowing I was in the presence of one of the immortals I must of stood open mouthed. He was very kind and appeared to be at least eight foot tall. He must of scared the life out of forwards. Ted a true legend and England international will be featured in the Hotspur Towers series later this season. To this day when I pass where the ‘Ditchburn Sports’ shop use to stand I think of the first Spur I met.
That's Ted - right- on the left is Bill Nicholson and Ron Burgess. Cant identify the Tottenham player on the right of picture.
This one isn’t strictly Talking Tottenham but as Tottenham set out of their Europa League campaign that autumn I also wrote White Hot Lane. (link - http://www.indiaspurs.com/blog/white-hot-lane ) Reflecting on those European nights at home back in the 60’s. Lots of people seemed to like it and the article was reproduced on the Sports Keeda site and other sites. Thanks to one of our media team who relentlessly strive to promote these scribbles throughout the season. Thanks lads. I’ve actually just upgraded the item slightly and re-launched it again as we started this years European adventure. Well I think its well worth a reread.
Readers that have followed our adventures since the beginning will be aware that we actually have a source (code named Tomato) deep within the club and he has leaked various snippets of confidence information to us.
One of his early reports was that the footballing bodies were concerned about players attempting to waste time when they were bring substituted by leaving the pitch very slowly. He informed us of a pilot scheme to be introduced that would speed the process up.
The first story in issue 1 was about Gylfi Suggessson managing to score a goal, after hitting the woodwork in his two previous games. A lot of the scribbles at the time was to encourage the readers to tell us what they thought including the risks of Hugo Lloris acting as sweeper. I also recalled the joys of following Spurs around the country in all weathers, including to Fulham when you could turn round and watch the boats on the river before they built their new stand.
As I said stats and stuff played a large part in the process, here are a few from those early issues (1). - Spurs were the first club to organize flights for fans to European games - We have played more games in the UEFA Cup / Europa League than any other British club - Spurs went from 14.9.06 to 8.3.07 winning eight concussive European games on the trot, a record - we were the first ever Champions League side to score 2 or more goals in every group game.
During my early researches one item I discovered was that the National Hall of Fame in Manchester contains no London clubs at all. When I asked about nominating Tottenham 61-63. They said they had been short listed eight years earlier but they were looking for the right time to induct them. I did suggest the 50th anniversary of the Double or the 50th anniversary of the first British team to win a major European trophy would have been a good point they failed to reply. Having asked them again recently they still do not accept nominations from the public (well its not as if the fans are important).
Talking has been part of the vanguard when keeping the supporters up to date with the developments surrounding the new stadium. Indeed as you can see here we were one of the first to raise the issue of safe standing.
As I've said before trivia is a little like the measles. Passing it on doesn't actually make you feel better but at least you know your not stuck with it on your own. Here is a little from those early issues - Did you know that our former player and manager Terry Venables co-wrote a series of detective novels under the name PG Yuill. The detective was called Hazell. It later become a TV series. Terry also devised a board game called ‘The Manager’. If that wasn’t enough he is a singer with recordings to his name but more about that another day.
The other staple of those issues was the weekly quote. Normally with a Spurs connection of some sort. Here again are just a few little gems that I don't think should fade away in the mists of time.
“I’m only taking the blame for three of them.” - Tom Jones, the Everton goalie when Spurs beat them 10-4.
Danny Blanchflower ( left ) and his - 'Danny-isms' have been regular contributor - ‘If Ossie had gone to Arsenal they would have had him marking the goalkeeper or something.’
‘Now watch this piece of film carefully, there, did you see it? Terry Venables playing a forward pass’ Jimmy Greaves on his old team mate. On a similar theme this one from the comic Les Dawson “White Hart Lane is a great place. The only thing wrong is the seats face the pitch.”
Well I hope you enjoyed Volume One. We are currently gathering together a team of intrepid explorers to go even deeper into the dust covered wilderness where the earlier copies of TT can be found. In Volume Two we will look back at now India Spurs became so well known in Scotland. When we talked to the club about supporter friendly issues and then how we took on UEFA and told them what they were doing wrong.
t- Keith 16024542
f- peter shearman (old non de plume)
Notes - 1 - I’ve included stats that were interesting and I think still correct but may have changed since first publication.
Flying Down to Rio
History of T.H.F.C.
Tribute to Bill Nicholson
The Road to Turin
Most Read Articles
The 100 Year War
Interview with Marina Sirtis
A Long Dark Shadow
By Royal Appointment
School Report: An Insight into the Younger Eric Dier
All Change At Spurs
History Of THFC: Part 1
Passage to India: Rohan Rickets
Thanks For The Memories
Our Tommy Carroll
The AVB Files: Part1
You The Jury
The Hand Of Hugo
Connection - Argentina
Creating a Reputation
Flying Down To Rio