The great middle-class football fad? I think it's all over

'We've been faking it all these years. We'd rather spend the Skysports subscription on Chablis'

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I was watching Sky News at the weekend, and I was surprised at the sudden, entirely instinctive revulsion I felt when the sports reporter announced that the Scottish football season had already started, even though it was still July.

I was watching Sky News at the weekend, and I was surprised at the sudden, entirely instinctive revulsion I felt when the sports reporter announced that the Scottish football season had already started, even though it was still July.

At the best of times, Scottish football always seems like a version of Groundhog Day, the same two teams playing over and over again with always the same result.

Then on top of that came the news of Luis Figo's transfer from Barcelona to Real Madrid for £38m! I found myself feeling even more appalled and sickened by the obscene amount of cash involved. I mean, £38m is enough money to keep a pointless government vanity project going for a whole month. That's the kind of dosh we're talking about here.

Now you might think that what I feel is neither here nor there, but you would be wrong. See, every craze, every fad over the last 20 years, I've been there. I was hysterical when Diana died and now can't remember why; I was one of the first with a nipple ring and I'm very keen on salsa dancing. I also have a pretty good nose for what is never going to catch on; I didn't bother with the big Cajun cuisine explosion of '92 (frankly, if I want my catfish blackened I'll move to a polluted part of Ukraine), and I was a lipstick lesbian for less than a fortnight.

What I am saying is that I am an ideal barometer of all that is trivial and transitory; I follow everything that is superficial and glib in a very dedicated way.

To give you another example: at the moment I travel to my office every day on one of those little push-along chrome scooters, whose inherent lack of safety is doing so much to cull 21-year-olds called Ben who work as runners in video production houses in Soho. To show you just how dedicated to fashion I am, let me tell you that I commute on my scooter even though my office happens to exist in a peculiar physical anomaly of the space/time continuum whereby the journeys to and from work are both uphill, making the use of a foot-propelled scooter pointless, tiring and distressing.

However, I will not stop. This is how the vacuous, cargo pants-wearing masses are getting around town at the moment, and so I will not stop scooting until we all stop - which should be sometime next week, if my estimation of our inanity is correct.

So my instant revulsion at the mention of anything to do with soccer has significance far outside my own personal orbit. What I think is that the middle-class and middle-aged are about to go off football!

The signs are there for all to see: for a start, a thing has got to be going off the boil when the Burke and Hare of popular culture, Andrew Lloyd Webber and Ben Elton, are writing a musical about it.

Of course, a crisis is also an opportunity (a crisertunity, as Homer Simpson calls it), and I see one here. As an author with a big advance and no idea what he is going to write next, I'm thinking that the time could be right for the first middle-class anti-football novel/ memoir. The book will be called Screaming Pitch or possibly It Is All Over, and it will be a tedious, unilluminating, meandering account of the effect that the game of football hasn't had on me over the years.

I will unmovingly relate how my dad took me to watch the great Shankly's Liverpool team of the Sixties and I wasn't that bothered, how football failed to fill a void in my life and how it failed to offer a metaphor for anything much that was of any use to me in the world outside the football pitch.

Let's face it, guys and girls, we've been faking it all these years, we don't really give a stuff how Stoke City or the Arse or Grimsby Town get on, we'd rather spend the Skysports subscription on Chablis, wouldn't we? It was all just a gigantic affectation, and now I've given us permission to drop it we can go back to the way we were and football can go back to the way it was. Corporate boxes can be demolished and returned to terracing or sheds selling pies, pitches can return to being primordial mud fields, and fans can go back to being crushed and trampled because nobody important will be involved any more.

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