Location: United Kingdom

A Naija Guy living (and loving) in the UK.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

TV Licensing, Superstitions and Football

I have a confession to make. Much as I make noise about Football and Arsenal Football Club, I am only an Armchair Supporter. I have only been to Highbury once in the last couple of years and that was for a Carling Cup game (which we ended up losing by the way).

Any follower of the game will know that last season was a poor one for Arsenal domestically. By the end of November last year, the team had lost more games than my blood pressure could handle. By Christmas when the losing trend hadn't abated I decided I couldn't handle the heat anymore so I gave my TV to my little cousin for his bedroom room and I cancelled my TV license. I'd convinced myself that by doing away with the TV I would no longer have to sit through Match of the Day and the frustrating action replays of our back four conceeding needless goals. I could also make positive use of my leisure time and enhance my social life.

The World Cup and TV Licensing
When I gave up my TV in Dec 05, it had always been my intention to acquire another one however temporarily to watch the World Cup. I also didn't know whether I would be able to handle not having a TV (imagine all those episodes of EastEnders I'd be missing!). Anyway the loss of a TV over the last few months has been cathartic and enabled me to wake up more alert as I no longer stay up till 1am watching re-runs of the Terminator on channel 4.

By the beginning of this month I had contacted my mate Steve to loan his extra TV for a month and I called TV licensing in a routine call to acquire a TV licence for a month to watch the World Cup. Imagine my suprise to find out the minimum period I can purchase a license for is a year! Awon Ole! After having a go at the Customer services rep at length I decided I wouldn't be exploited and chose to watch the games at my local pub. This obviously hasn't worked as my natural inclination to watch as many games as posible live has now meant I am on first name terms with the 7 bar staff, the manager and about 10-12 of the bar regulars. So today I relented and have called up TV licensing to set up a direct debit.

I have always been against the idea of a TV license on principle as I cannot understand why I should be forced to pay £130 odd just because the BBC can't be bothered to carry adverts and compete with the other commercial channels. One of my friends used to work for the BBC and her stories of the excesses of the senior staff and their charge accounts sets my blood boiling every time I think about it.

Lady Superstition
When watching football especially games I have an emotional attachment to, I have this strange irrational belief that my actions on my sofa can actually impact upon the results of the game. For the Champions league final vs Barcelona it was my fault Lehmann was sent off. I was hungry and Steve's beautiful wife offered me some aromatic and delicious J-Rice, what could a man do? I had to say yes, but I should have known better. I haven't eaten J-Rice during a game since 1998 when my J-Rice eating antics caused Nigeria to lose 4-1 to Denmark. I used to think this was a strange eccentricity of mine but one of my friends, an Arsenal mad Ghanian chick refuses to leave the country when Arsenal have home games as if she does so the team always loses.

Since relenting and buying the TV licence this afternoon (I swear once the World Cup is over I will cancel that Direct Debit and return the TV to Steve, those thieves at the BBC will not get more than the £26 first instalment from me), I went to Steve's place to pick up the spare TV and set it up and within 2 minutes of turning it on saw Tunisia equalise against Saudi Arabia. Now all I have to do is go root out my lucky Nike T-Shirt (which I haven't worn since December by the way) and settle down to watch the remaining 47 games. Perhaps the African countries will do better now as I have also sworn off J-Rice till 10th July.


Blogger Monef said...


Must say, I used to feel the same way about the Beeb until I moved here and encountered the world of 3 minute commercial breaks every 90 seconds. It is the most infuriating thing ever. I would gladly fork out for a TV license if it meant foregoing that BS. On the other hand, it aggravates me that the license only covers BBC. It should extend to all terrestrial channels otherwise it isn't really a TV License is it? It's a BBC license and therefore should be optional. If you don't pay your license you don't get BBC but ITV, Channel 4 and FIVE are just fine.

12:15 am, June 15, 2006  
Blogger Sola Baale said...

Talk about not satisfying customers, I enjoy adverts and I do not want to pay TV license. It is government robbery big time like many other taxes that should be scrapped.

7:13 am, June 15, 2006  
Blogger Anthony Arojojoye said...

LOL at the bowl of Jollof rice.

NIce blog though.

8:25 am, June 15, 2006  
Anonymous aihammed delot said...

tv license covers all bbc channels AND RADIO!!! ...i personally think its worth it, but i also agree that you shouldnt be forced to pay for it.
Dude, dont eat a grain of jollof rice till after ivory coast play holland, plus dont remove that nike t-shirt till ghana win. i know you'll be starved and smell like yesterdays sick but've got to do it in the interest of the beautiful game.

10:02 am, June 15, 2006  
Blogger Morountodun said...

I suppose I only started blogging cause had all this spare time on my hands as I
1) didn't have a TV and
2) am trying to get serious with one woman and no longer spending hours chasing the skirts

@ Monef - a few options would be nice, press one to watch Terrestial TV without the BBC, two to watch BBC with all the adverts, three, blah, blah you get the message

@ Sola - I've been enjoying the adverts btw the games in the last couple of days I was thinking of doing a blog on adverts, but no time with all this footie...

@ anthony - these african nations better appreciate the sacrifice I'm making

@ aihammed - yes you are right while even at the best of times BBC tv doesn't have much to offer me I do like BBC radio 4...

2:10 pm, June 16, 2006  
Blogger Mona said...

Hiya, got ur msg from my vocab blog...that's cool I don't mind, I'll just change what it currently features and you can send me a list of what you want me to add. I'm also gonna book mark your blog :o)

Take care p.s. send to

5:00 pm, June 16, 2006  
Anonymous AIHAMMED DELOT said...


11:12 am, June 17, 2006  
Blogger Morountodun said...

Honest this time it wasn't me, perhaps that mad Ghanian chick has gone on holiday again...

1:44 pm, June 17, 2006  
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