By Peter D’out (our man with a bun)
These days I tend to partake of my refreshments vis a vis matches either at the Auld Triangle (previously the Plimsoll) on St Johns Road, and within the Emirates itself.
For the Udinese game I did both, sharing a pint or two with Ian and Mark. I bought the first round, and Mark the second, which was extremely generous of Mark given that he was on lemonade.
The Triangle has, I am certain, taken to putting the prices up considerably on match days, and then rounding prices up for buyers who are not regulars. Two pints and a lemonade for £11? A little over the top I feel.
But then into the ground. I partook of nothing prior to the match, as we arrived to the playing of “Wonder of You”, and took our seats, but at half time I nipped down to the catering facilities between blocks 99 and 100 and ordered a meat pie and a cappuccino.
And lo and behold. They were fresh out of cappuccino.
Now let me stress this. This was half time in the first game of the season and they were out of cappuccino. Leaving aside the technicality that it is actually against Fair Trading rules to advertise something you don’t have, how can you run out of a standard drink from a machine by the opening minute of half time. I was after all, only the third in the half time queue.
“What else do you have?” I asked
“White coffee and black coffee” came the reply.
“I will have a chocolate,” I said, and I got one.
But Mr Delaware North who runs the franchise for drinks in the Ems… let me ask you this (if I may be so bold). How can you run out of a product at the start of half time on day one?
I mean to say…
Actually Walter always tells me he finds the chocolate too hot and not sweet enough, but I must say it was fine for me, so I guess everyone has their own taste. BUT WHERE WAS THE BLEEDIN CAPPO?
Then it got worse.
I mean, really worse.
I was given the pie in its plastic bag, and I said, “where’s the forks?” there being none on the serving bench. The young man said, “over there” and pointed vaguely.
I walked to the position by one of the internal walls where such items can be found = but no. No forks. Lots of stirring spoons for the non-existent cappuccino but no forks. I walked on to the benches near the outer wall, and looked. Sauce and mustard but no forks. On to the next one. Eventually I found one tub of forks and got just about the last one.
Turns out that hordes of Arsenal supporters were on the prowl looking for plastic forks, and there was only one tub. Quite possibly there was a major uprising. Shouting in the corridors, that sort of thing. Calls for the resignation of Mr Wenger, I’ll be bound. Disorder in the lower levels perchance.
As for the meat pie it was fairly revolting.
And the game… well there was the issue of Djourou coming on and going off again. Some say he was injured, but I thought he was brought on by mistake, what with Mr Wenger being in the stand on account of being hit by a UEFA official and daring to glare back at him (or whatever invented offence it was in the first place).
What is true is that when we brought on Frimpong to play along side Song as two central defensive midfielders, then, and only then, did Ramsey come to life. I think the season’s plan is to play Jack and Song behind Ramsey, and on the basis of the last part of last night’s game, it will work a treat.
Of course I found it hard to focus on the closing sections of the game, what with the lack of cappuccino, but somehow I made it to the end, Ian helped me out, clearing the way with shouts of “ancient blogger leaving the stadium”, and we got back to the car, just.
A sad experience in the Catering Dept. Sort it out guv.
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