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June 11, 2009


john b

I used to pass the Concrete Society plaque whenever I walked to Piccadilly. It especially pleased my structural engineer friend who was visiting from Darn Sarf; I seem to recall us buying a bottle of whisky and drinking it in the underpass while toasting the Glory of Concrete and all those who work with it.


Tangentially, I am reminded by the link that I once emailed the "Old Fashioned Football Shirt Company" about the availability of replicas of the 1970s FC St Pauli kit, and was told that they get about a dozen such requests every month, but the StP are very, very protective of their intellectual property.


Isn't their symbol a skull and crossbones?


Yeah, that's the fella. of course, you could sew a jolly roger on to an old Coventry City away shirt for much the same effect. And I believe replica kits going back to the seventies are available at the club shop.

As it happens I think St Pauli is run by hip and groovy capitalists of the slightly dodgy type rather than being actual anarchists. But frankly even if it were I can understand their vigilance. I think resistance to the "Oh let's rip them off, they're anarchists" mentality comes under self defence, which anarchists are quite keen on.

Igor Belanov

I suppose Dukla Prague were a very sixties football team, though their demise came in the 90's I think rather than the Thatcherite age.


Gosh, do we all have Upper Brook Street and Half Man Half Biscuit in our DNA, or something? A mate of mine got mugged under that bridge at gunpoint once. Ah, memories.

The walls of the drawing office at Manchester University engineering department in the early 90s had photos of the construction of Hammersmith Flyover on. In the final year we had the fun job of designing an overbridge for the M60 (not, I hasten to reassure you, intended for actual construction). In a sense, with CAD and Twyford Down, we were being prepared for a future that was already behind us.

Just to round off the circle, I spent 1995/6 in Hamburg, where I got to know a half-Irish half-Pakistani St. Pauli fan from Leeds. St. Pauli were briefly up in the top flight then and the place was buzzing. We didn't know at the time that one of our fellow students in the Harburg Wohnheim was one Mohammed Atta. We didn't move in the same circles.

john b

That's another datapoint for Alex's conspiracy theory...


Real left-libertarians go for SC Hamburg instead, in the burning question of which Hanseatic football team to support; a demonstration that self-management and mutual ownership can work in the 1. Bundesliga.

Regarding concrete, I picked up a copy of Concrete Quarterly recently. Sadly, it wasn't printed on a special, extremely thin slab of the stuff. It still has pretensions to Corbusian glamour, though; presumably because the boring trade-mag content has left with the ad money and power brokers.

If it actually went belly up, I'd be tempted to start something up under the same title because...it's great.

Meanwhile, concrete is apparently the second-most consumed substance in the world after water. We get through, as a species, some berserk quantity each a year. Although I think some Chinese guy's had my share and more.


Mind you, I don't have any feelings for HMHB; but then, I'm both younger and a product of the Motorway City of the 70s rather than Manchester...

Igor Belanov

HMHB are from Birkenhead and are Tranmere fans. No reason for Yorkshiremen not to like them- they're a lot better than Kaiser Chiefs!

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