Sir Alex Ferguson's Wristwatch
At the dawn of creation, when the first intricate strings of existence were chiselled from a tired darkness, constraint became the cage in which we all should live. It was time that was to be our master; it would measure us, hold us to account, it would keep all that there is in a china vase rocking and brittle, in danger of falling at any minute on to the stone floor extinction. Sir Alex Ferguson, manager of Manchester United, owns a time-piece that lies at the heart of this universe.
Timing Football Matches
Every football referee must reign in the outskirts of time, stem the tide of the fattening match length. None of these referees has a time-piece that lies at the heart of the universe. Sir Alex Ferguson, manager of Manchester United, is the only man to hold such power. This is why Sir Axles Ferguson, manager of Manchester United, believes that he alone knows how much injury time should be played at games involving Manchester United.
With standard watches, you can start and stop time measurement, you can reasonably approximate the amount of injury time required based on the stop-watch you have used. But these are passive measurements, approximations of how we think this universe should behave. How arrogant we are, the human-race, as the new kids on the block, to believe we have the capacity to understand the strings that hold together our universe; To believe that something we make with our fallen hands is better suited to calculate injury time at the end of a football match better than Sir Alex Ferguson, manager of Manchester United, whose time-piece ticks to the pulse of God himself.
Referees may now on occasion wear green or red clothing, play advantage, be so intricate in their off-side rule interpretation as it becomes a snow-flake, but they still preside over the timing of football matches with a hundred-year old science. With every whistle blow, every gesture, and every damning word of instruction - they ignore Einstein. Time is not constant, it pushed, pulled, stretched, contracted; it is as tired and bruised as we are and sometimes it doesn’t just want to carry on.
In the past, the officials of football accepted that as Sir Alex Ferguson’s time-piece lay at the heart of the universe, that it had a greater truth than their own offerings from Timex. But such are the secular times we live in, the officials are bowing down to a new idol – the one that stares back at them when they shave in the morning. They push their independence, profess impartiality as their maxim.
Literary Allusions to Sir Alex Ferguson’s Time-piece
Sir Alex Ferguson’s obsessive stalking of time may be seen as phenomena tied to the turn of the twenty-first century, but so tied to the strings of existence is his watch that allusions to it have been made throughout history.
WH Auden understood more than most the unreliability of time that lies in the heart of Sir Alex Ferguson's wristwatch. In his poem 'If I Could Tell You' Auden makes Sir Alex Ferguson's wristwatch an unreliable character. "Time will say nothing but I told you so" is repeated several times emphasising the futility of believing that a game is won when injury time still remains. He understood better than most how two decades, ones in which Ferguson held dominion over a certain football team, would be dominated by the impurity of the dark liquid of time and circumstance.
You may choose to go easy with the yellows; to place pragmatism before reaction - but you are matter travelling inextricably outwards, cooling, into the darkness of the expanding universe. Maybe you are Howard Webb, maybe you are not - you will stand under his judgement.
Sir Alex Ferguson's shall sit on the white throne after the resurrection of the dead. Referring to his Wristwatch, his burden and his privilege will be his decision on whether you can return with him to eternal bliss or be struck from the book and burn in the Lake of Fire.