Wednesday, December 17, 2008

The Perils of Circumstance: Good news for Leonard Cohen, not so good for Paul Ince.

So, apparently Leonard Cohen was in a financial mess until recently because his former manager ripped him off (or something like that) but I guess it's going to be a great Christmas for him - who knows what the royalties are but if a song he wrote is in the top 40 three times over then he'll get something for that. Almost tempted to buy the Jeff Buckley version - and join the 70,000 strong facebook group supporting that campaign - seems somethings can overcome apathy. I'd vote for the school choir version I heard tonight as arranged by my wife, something she's been working on with the kids for a month. Genius really.

Meanwhile Paul Ince loses his job. Not because of the credit crunch and I guess unemployment for a former Premiership footballer isn't so bad as it would be for most of us. Sad though that he's not got received the patience that his former manager Alex Ferguson received - from which a world-beating club has been built.

How can a few months in a job is never enough - anyone can see that it takes time to get settled and develop something. Not everyone can do well in a league - and when you get a Hull City overperforming and the top 4 losing and drawing games they should have won everything evens out a bit. Ince's former employers said that it was the same squad who finished well up the table last year but that's not entirely true - you've got to think that losing Brad Friedel and David Bentley has hurt Blackburn and they've not massively replaced them. Besides the guy who got them up there (Mark Hughes) is also languishing in reach of relegaton with a mega-budget and a band of galacticos.

Alex Ferguson's protege's may have dwindled in number recently (Ince, Keane) but Hughes and Bruce remain. Surely managers need to be given time - but they probably also need to learn their trade in the lower leagues, which Ince was doing before he overstretched himself... wouldn't have hurt to spend a couple more years learning with a smaller club. The Biblical principle of being entrusted with little before you get entrusted with much is true wisdom for a reason - it works. You'd hope Ince will drop a level and persevere but he can probably afford not to bother...

How people react to circumstances seems to count for a lot. Circumstances will change the life of Alexandra Burke and Leonard Cohen this week as they have for Paul Ince. Mostly circumstances are well out of our control  - what can any of us do about the global financial situation really? - and if decisions are always made by the changing tides of circumstances then we'll try and re-invent and re-work things moment by moment. Something fueled by rolling news that expects there to be a story every hour...  We have to have something more solid to hold onto. Something that allows us to perservere for a while. Something steady. Something better.

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