Behold the new face of English hooliganism: Me-Tu. He's a nine-year-old parrot owned by Irene Kerrigan of Hertfordshire. Kerrigan is a 66-year-old "eccentric," as the papers like to say, who loves the old game as much as she loves her pet. Kerrigan thought Me-Tu could use some fresh air a few days ago so she took him in his cage to a local match. Before the second half was over however, Me-Tu had been escorted from the stadium.
It began innocently enough, with Me-Tu sitting and on rare occasions squawking, enjoying the game between Hatfield and Hertford Heath. But as the second half wore on, he picked up the sound of the referee's whistle. As parrots do, began mimicking it, at first quietly and then loud enough for the players on the pitch to hear. They stopped play repeatedly, always looking around to see what the call was. Of course, there was never an infraction. Just a parrot whose owner had good seats. Referee Gary Bailey says he had no choice but to kick Me-Tu and Kerrigan out.
Maybe this is the dawn of a more whimsical age of hooliganism in the UK. After all, a blogger for the Guardian argued yesterday that these days, Americans are far more hooliganstic than his people. Yankees fans kill Red Sox fans even outside the stadium, we are told. Then again, maybe it's just that the Spaniards have picked up the mantle of ugly radicalism. Yesterday, Real Madrid was fined 3,000 Euros for a group of fans who taunted a ref with fascist chants about his coming death in a gas chamber. This comes a few months after Atletico Madrid followers yelled monkey chants at black athletes from Marseille. It makes us wonder if Chevy Chase should look to verify if General Franco is still dead.
These grim reports, though, highlight how fun a turn events have taken—at least in Hertfordshire, England. The good times won't stop any time soon, either: Kerrigan plans to bring Me-Tu to Saturday's match.
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