In our uncertain world there are still a few things you can rely on- that the sun will come out tomorrow, that British people will complain about the weather, that the toffee pennies will be left at the end of a Quality Street box and that if the public is told there are naked photos of a celebrity most of us will want to see them.
Another certainty is that 80s musician and professional grouch Morrissey will be quoted mouthing off about something.
Every couple of months the quiffed assassin of joy will pop up having laid into someone, usually the Royals or other celebrities. Of course, he spreads the hate around a fair bit (a list is available here) but he usually has his old favourites.
This week it’s been reported that he’s decided to target the Beckhams in his latest diss, and doesn’t mince his words:
“I’d…have the Peckhams dragged to the edge of the village and flogged because they are insufferable to anyone of any intelligence”
There’s no typo there by the way, he referred to them as the “Peckhams” throughout, for reasons I’m not entirely sure of and in a way I think this kind of shows him up for what he is- a snob.
Peckham, for the non-Brits, is an area of London, which while having been gentrified in recent years is still widely viewed as one of the City’s less attractive areas. To dub them after this area just makes Morrissey seem like a snooty middle classed douche slagging off the couple because of their humble beginnings, and the snobbery is enhanced by his dismissal of football, still largely the preserve of the working classes here in the UK:
“Football often seems to me to have no meaning whatsoever other than just to be there. It can’t be elevated any higher because so many footballers are paid £200,000 a week, yet couldn’t identify a harp”
I’m not saying everyone has to like football, I mean, the world don’t move to the beat of just one drum, but there’s just the impression of sneering superiority in this statement.
I think the main reason that this outburst irked me was that I have a man crush on David Beckham, as well as being a great player he always seems to come across as a really likable, charming kind of bloke.
Now, I’m not a massive fan of Victoria Beckham, and she’s my least favourite of the Spice Girls, largely because of her insistence on using the same pouting expression in every single photo. I just feel like giving her a shake and telling her to smile properly once in a life. The photo below is the closest I’ve seen to a smile on her face in years and compared to the other 4 spices she still seems disinterested.
But despite this, I feel it’s rather mean and petty of Morrissey to have a pop and single her out as the nadir of British society when ignoring “credibility” and “respectability” and all those other fancy NME ways of making music seem more clever than it is, he’s famous for exactly the same reason. Both Posh and Moz are pop stars.
Yes, you could argue that Morrissey wrote his own songs but essentially he got famous because of the same reasons- he appealed to an audience and tapped into how they felt at the time, just as the Spice Girls did for girls in the 90s. Is appealing to mopey 80s teenagers really more admirable than capturing the imagination of 90s tweens? To quote Bart Simpson: “Making teenagers depressed is like shooting fish in a barrel”
I’m not saying that Morrissey is rubbish, or that the Spice Girls are as good, but they come from the same place.
I hope that Morrissey doesn’t really feel this way and he’s just filling his role as pop’s resident sourpuss but there’s something about his demeanor that means you can never be completely sure about.
I mean, this is a dude who’s self righteous “Meat is murder” rants especially grate, my Mum has been a veggie since before I was born and two of my sisters are meat free too. I think everyone should have the choice of what they’re going to eat, and I have a lot of respect for people who do it because of their beliefs. But here’s the thing, don’t get all preachy and judgmental about it. This is my belief on lots of things, but with veggies it really gets under my skin and if anything just make me want to go out and have the biggest steak I can find.
I realize that this is a childish reaction, but that’s human nature.
Morrissey also annoyed me last year by slagging off the Olympic spirit and equating it with Nazism. Yes national pride was at an all time high last year, but we were pretty damn far from the Nazis. For one thing, mentioning things in connection with the Nazis is incredibly lazy and reductive of the horrible things that the Nazis did.
Secondly, the only similarity is that the Nazis hosted an Olympics.
In terms of attitude the response to London 2012 was a polar opposite, yes there was national pride but there was no feeling of racial superiority in fact Team GB was quite a great example of Britain’s multicultural make up.
And also, look at the largely positive response to the Paralympics, something I think the Nazis were against.
So, yeah, basically my point is- Lighten up, Morrissey.
Any thoughts? You know what to do. BETEO.