By Gerald Jacobs
February 10, 2009
Are you a member of ‘the Jewish lobby’? No? Are you sure? I didn’t think I was but I am not so sure now. I wonder how you apply for membership. Do you apply, in fact, or are you co-opted, possibly without your knowledge?
If you want to find out about this cloak-and-dagger possibility, perhaps the diarist at The Independent newspaper will be able to help. Last week in its diary, the Indy reported on ‘an ill-judged wisecrack’ by the gifted, former Southampton footballer and now Sky Sports pundit, Matthew Le Tissier. Le Tiss was at a dinner to make a presentation to Tottenham Hotspur manager Harry Redknapp.
If you have read this far, you probably won’t need telling that Tottenham is London’s ‘Jewish club’. Its fans — and I admit to being one — glory in the appellation: ’yids’. And I do mean glory. At the Spurs’ ground, yiddoe = hero.
Now Le Tissier was not only endowed with abundant footballing talent but also with quite a lengthy proboscis. Thus his ‘ill-judged wisecrack’ to the collected soccer types at the dinner to the effect that he always enjoyed playing at White Hart Lane, Tottenham’s ground, because "it was the only place where I felt I didn't have a big nose."
Yes, ill-judged, but no real harm done. This is a footballer, not a politician. Footballers are notoriously daft, and that’s putting it mildly. I am sure the silence that apparently greeted the gag will be lesson enough.
The Independent diary, however, seems to expect retribution for poor old Tiss. Its verdict was that the nose gag ‘is unlikely to endear Le Tissier to the Jewish lobby.’
Don’t know about you, but I feel much more insulted by the Independent’s comment than by Matt Le T’s joke.