herald

Sunday 17 December 2017

Roy's got standards, and with a bit of luck he'll get humilty too

Few people are without a strongly held opinion on Roy Keane, good or bad.

And those that love him usually respond to any criticism of his behaviour by quoting his 'high standards' and 'professionalism' as excuses for his combative nature.

Fighting about standards is fine, occasionally. There have been one or two big bust-ups: a Mick McCarthy here; an Alex Ferguson there...

But it gets hard to explain when the pattern of argument and conflict repeats unendingly.

It gets harder again when the spats often happen for apparently silly reasons. For example, Keane's new book reveals he reversed his decision to sign Robbie Savage at Sunderland because he didn't like the player's voicemail message.

Just as every anecdote in Alan Partridge's book ended with 'needless to say I had the last laugh', it would appear that every pointless row in Keane's biography could end 'needless to say I had high standards'.

So far we've had to base our views on leaked excerpts, but today we'll all be able to buy the book.

Hopefully, it will be stuffed with humility and introspection to counterbalance the stories of people being subjected to Keane's 'standards'.

Ebola claims dog victim

You'd think being diagnosed with Ebola is about as bad as your week could get.

Not so for the Spanish nurse who is now in quarantine with her life hanging in the balance as she fights the deadly disease.

As she was coming to terms with the diagnosis and starting the fight of her life, Spanish authorities came to her with an additional piece of news - they were going to kill her dog.

The dog had not bitten anyone, nor had it become rabid, nor was it terminally ill, nor - most importantly - was there any indication that it was infected with, or carrying, Ebola.

But it was her dog, it had spent a lot of time with her, and, therefore, the experts decided, it might have contracted the disease. So the authorities decided to execute it and incinerate its body.

Unsurprisingly, the nurse and her family reacted badly to this suggestion and tried to prevent their beloved family pet from being assassinated and cremated.

With no luck. The Spanish Government has secured a court order for the killing of the pooch.

Undoubtedly, they are taking the safest course of action. Without question it is the best way to guarantee no spread of disease.

But in natural justice, in human decency, there has to be a way to minimise the risk of contagion without telling a young woman that she may die, but that either way, her dog is toast.

Madness in his method?

Method actors can be an odd lot. We're all familiar with stories of actors spending weeks living the lives of the characters they intend to be (De Niro driving a taxi before Taxi Driver, Will Smith sparring unendingly before Ali).

At this stage we're bored by stories of bizarre behaviour on set (refusing to come out of character to talk to the crew being so common it no longer raises an eyebrow).

But even by Hollywood method-acting standards, Shia Labeouf's (below) actions should have eyebrows leaping.

This has reached it's zenith (we hope) during filming of his latest movie, Fury.

He plays a WW2 tank driver. To make it realistic, he had a dentist remove his front tooth, slashed open his face with a knife and stopped washing for the duration of filming.

Reports indicate he was provided accommodation away from the rest of the cast and crew…

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