From Dandy Goat unpaid intern Richard Omega comes a new thriller about the Euro 2016 championship — guaranteed to frighten every Cristiano Ronaldo fan at their very core. One man, one moth, one impossible desire.
News from around the world where -- much to our great shame and discomfort -- the U.S. still runs the show
Pensioner Trent Pare, 75, who voted to leave the EU, was out for a walk on Thursday when he saw his neighbors lined up, filling out what appeared to be tickets to win a prize.
“I joined the queue and a nice lady gave me a slip of paper,” he said. “In retrospect, I should have read the box before I ticked it.”
Barmaid Meghan Decker, 26, says that she understood that a “leave” vote would simply mean a limit on the number of Polish plumbers allowed into the UK.
“They’re always coming into my pub and going on about cleaning my pipes, and I’ve had enough,” she said. “I didn’t mean that I actually wanted Britain to part ways with Europe. That’d be absurd.”
Cellist Mark Godwin, 45, says that he believed he was taking a survey about if he merely wanted Britain to leave the EU — but not necessarily do it.
“They could have been a bit clearer that this was not just an opinion poll,” he said. “I might have given it more thought.”
PARIS — Polish soccer hooligans who had travelled to France for the Euro 2016 championship tried in vain to start a massive brawl before their team’s match against Ukraine, only to learn that the opposing team’s supporters were not present because the Poles were in the wrong city altogether.
Tomasz N. says that he and 100 or so members of his group the Warsaw Ultras had tickets to Tuesday’s match in the southern port city of Marseilles, but they had accidentally travelled to Montpellier, 100 miles to the west.
“We get off the train, and we’re very drunk and ready make fight, but train station is so quiet, and we ask, where are the Ukrainian supporters?” he said. “Woman tells us we buy train tickets to wrong city.”
“Not our fault,” he added. “Marseilles and Montpellier both start with ‘M.’”
“At least it’s not as bad as 2012,” said Grzegorz K., one of the more senior members, referring to the Euro 2012 when he and his confused group mistakenly left their hometown of Warsaw — where a semi-final match was being held, and where they had hoped to fight German and Italian fans — and drove nearly 250 miles away to Wraclaw, thereby missing the match altogether.
Not willing to let the oversight ruin their plans for a decent riot, some members were intent on finding another group to fight.
“Come on, you cowards,” shouted Pawel R. to a group of confused Chinese tourists as he threw a cafe chair at them. Because it was chained to the ground, the chair simply bounced back and hit him in the shins.
Police spokesperson Stephane le Bleu says that despite the efforts of the Warsaw Ultras to incite violence and mayhem in the quiet city, no serious injuries were reported, although the outcome could have been much worse.
“They did throw dozens of Molotov cocktails at police,” he said. “But apparently, the Polish hooligans mistook sparkling (“gazeuse”) water for gasoline, so what happened is that they filled their bottles with mineral water instead of combustible fuel.”
Following days of rampant hooliganism and violence at Euro 2016, a spokesperson for ISIS — which had hoped to carry out attacks at the month-long championship — says the terror organization will instead just let soccer fans destroy each other.
“Our plan was years in the works,” said Western European project coordinator Akmed al-Buttholi. “Sleeper cells spread over France were supposed to simultaneously detonate bombs in dozens of narrow streets where drunk fans were gathered, so that even the ones who escaped the initial blasts would trample each other as they were running away.”
“Brother Abu [al-Goatamour] even went so far as to run a computer simulation, and Brother Mullah [al-Horni] put together a fine PowerPoint presentation for future martyrs how to avoid getting STDs from loose harlots in the afterlife.”
Despite all the work that went into the plan, al-Buttholi says that he and his team are content just to stand aside and let the punches, kicks and headbutts fall where they may.
“At the end of the day, what we really want are mass casualties, and that’s what these hooligans are giving us,” he said. “Have you seen what the Russians and Englishmen did? Absolutely brutal, smashing each other’s faces with metal chairs, bottles and sign posts.”
“Brother Khaled [al-Squeameeshi] was so horrified when he saw the video on YouTube that he puked all over the floor,” he added.
As the Japanese city of Hiroshima prepares to bask in the glow of a US presidential visit — and deal with the fallout of what has become a political controversy in America as rumors abound that Barack Obama is planning to apologize for the dropping of the first atom bomb in 1945 — the occasion has led to the reopening of some old wounds in a country which has largely put the horrors of World War II behind it.
The bitter division is reflected in the chant heard at every sports match between teams representing the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. “We’re number one! We’re number one!”
The words are unrelated to the sporting achievements of either city, both of whose teams languish near the bottom of Japan’s soccer, baseball and sumo wrestling leagues.
The sickening refrain comes exclusively from the ranks of Hiroshima supporters, and it refers to their city’s status as the target of the world’s first atomic bombing.
Seventy years later, residents of Sakanagi must be thinking of a different motto to live by — “Close, but no cigar.”
Mitsubishi Honda, curator of Nagakasi’s A-bomb museum — a pale imitation of its spectacular and much-visited rival in Hiroshima, situated in the back of a decrepit downtown grocery store — summed up the bitterness of his fellow Ganasakians.
“At peace rallies throughout the world, they always chant ‘No more Hiroshimas!’ No one ever says ‘No more Nagasakis!’, even though it’s considerably more alliterative,” he complains.
A kind of global historical amnesia surrounds the attack on what was at the time a thriving port city with a rich cultural heritage.
While everyone knows the name of the Enola Gay, ask any American the name of the Boeing B-29 Superfortress that dropped the second bomb on Sanagasi and people are likely to look at you like a dog that’s just been told a joke.
Those who do venture a guess come up with answers ranging from “The Spirit of St. Louis” to “The General Lee” or “Titanic.” In fact, the aircraft was called … Well I can’t remember right now. I’ll look it up later.
Ironically, the Hiroshima bomb — codenamed “Little Boy” — had a relatively crappy blast yield equivalent to 15 tons of TNT. The bomb dropped on Kaganasi — which somebody told me they thought was called “Little Girl… No wait…Donald Duck,” but it was probably something else — was apparently much bigger, with an explosive force equivalent to twenty-something tons of TNT.
But when Ganakasians remind their Hiroshiman rivals of this, they are accused of being sore losers and making it up.
Even in death, Saganaki comes up woefully short. As few as 46,000 people may have died as a result of the bombing on 9th August 1945, and even the highest estimate of 80,000 dead falls shy of the lowball estimate of 90,000 for Hiroshima, where the actual death toll may have been as high as 146,000.
“Every year when the anniversary of the attack on our city comes around, the Japanese people are still recovering from their hangovers from Hiroshima celebrations three days earlier,” says Honda. “They barely notice August 9th.”
But it’s the way that the people of Hiroshima never pass up an opportunity to remind Kagasani who’s top dog that hurts even more than the lingering scars from radiation burns.
Whether it’s snarky Facebook posts or spiteful graffiti with intricate Japanese characters spelling out an approximate translation of “Losers!” on train cars arriving from Hiroshima, the citizens of Kanagasi face constant taunting. And it hurts hardest for the dwindling band of survivors of the bombing.
Subaru Saki, who was just five years old when a blinding flash and loud bang changed her world forever, remembers visiting a restaurant in Hiroshima a few years ago.
“When the waitress heard my accent and realized where I was from, she made fun of me and said we were just trying to copy Hiroshima by getting bombed. I was embarrassed and went bright red. It was like I could feel the skin peeling off my face all over again.”
It seems that the people of Kawasaki are destined to struggle with a twin legacy of suffering and ignorance for another 70 years. Sorry, did I say Kawasaki? I meant Nagasaki.