You always know when Charlie Nicholas and others of his ilk have written their own work, as opposed to simply letting loose a stream of consciousness which a better wordsmith then crafts into a useable form. Nicholas writes at primary school level; when he does it himself, without editorial assistance, the results are usually a car-crash.
So it was today in his article for The Express.
Now, let’s not misunderstand stuff here; The Express is never going to be the home of good journalism.
This is the rag which was employing the bigot Kate Hopkins long after other outlets had headed for the hills. It is one of the worst “newspapers” in the country, at times even putting to shame the scandal rags and even the Daily Mail.
But Nicholas has to be the worst writer on staff, and it’s no surprise that the first paper today which reproduced his words in full was The Daily Record; I’ll be doing a piece on Jackson’s latest trash this afternoon, but suffice to say that to their editorial staff Nicholas’ writing is first rate.
By their own dire standards, it just about comes up to snuff.
The rest of us wouldn’t publish this guy in a student newspaper.
Read this segment for openers;
“I will make no apologies for having a go. I have never been one of these social media sheep … Neil is quite happy to tell all the fans and his social media that Charlie has been slagging Celtic off for years … Last week’s piece had complimentary issues towards Neil and I have been supportive of him since he has come back.”
“Last week’s piece had complimentary issues towards Neil”?
Jesus Christ, that’s deplorable. How did something that mangled get past a sub-editor? Do they all read his work and snigger at him behind his back or what? Because that’s the kind of thing that would embarrass the writers at Ibrox Noise.
This is the same article where he boasts that he has been in the media business for 30 years! 30 years and he still writes like someone who’s seen others do it and thinks “I could have a go at that.” Try that approach to brain surgery, see how it turns out.
Honestly, that one sentence is so astonishing and dreadful that it’s an indictment on not only him but the “newspaper” he works at. It’s not the only one.
“I would love to be more warmly welcomed by Celtic fans but I accept my opinion is one that has been portrayed by some elements of the club as the enemy because they feel that my criticism is harsher than any of the others.”
Where even to start?
I’ve italicised the bit that makes my head spin … man oh man ….
Tell you what, we’ll skip over the calamitous mishandling of the language and go straight to his self-aggrandising ending.
Celtic fans don’t dislike Nicholas because his “criticism is harsher” than any others.
I know a dozen hacks who are far more critical of the club than Nicholas.
He is the enemy – along with the likes of Keevins – because his criticism is so often un-necessary.
It is self-serving. It is highly personal, and it is petty.
It is, in fact, the definition of chickenshit.
As regular readers will know, that term originated in the military; Stephen Ambrose discusses its origins in the book Band Of Brothers.
He quotes the text Wartime, by Paul Fussell to reveal that it means “open scrimmage for power and authority and prestige … a constant ‘paying off of old scores’ … chickenshit is so called—instead of horse—or bull—or elephant shit—because it is small-minded and ignoble and takes the trivial seriously.”
And that’s what Nicholas is; gutless, snide, small-minded, egotistical. His dislike of Celtic, which comes through in almost everything he writes these days, is vindictive. He believes that having a newspaper column gives him some kind of power to settle ancient debts.
But there’s nothing special about having a newspaper column.
Kris Boyd has a newspaper column.
Kris Commons has a newspaper column.
Keith Jackson still has one.
The Express used to pay Nigel Farage to write one for God’s sake; that’s the company Nicholas keeps.
We’re not talking Woodward and Bernstein here.
All he did today was remind us that he takes everything personally, that he will not admit when he is wrong, that he is incapable of offering any sort of honest appraisal of our club.
His contention that we ended the window weaker than we went into it is manifestly ludicrous when we’ve added half a dozen players to the first team squad and lost not one key footballer.
His contention that he is not a Celtic “puppet” unlike some is a gutless snark because he knows nobody can fire back at it, since he never bothers to name anybody.
I know I’m not alone in wondering which members of the press corps he reckons are slavishly pro-Celtic … I’d have loved for him to name them, but that would have required a backbone instead of a spine of quivering jelly, along with the imagination of Stephen King.
But other elements of the media lap this up, which only goes to show that Nicholas has one “special insight” which, actually, is neither special nor insightful; some hacks will reproduce any opinion, no matter how absurd, if it comes with an anti-Celtic bent.
This is not news to any of us, in the same way Nicholas being a first rate idiot isn’t news.
That so many of the outlets have rushed to reproduce his toxic screed today is pitiful.
Nicholas’ column is like the wailing of a child who’s been told to go to his room.
Lennon has given this joker enough attention for a while … and so have we.
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