James Baxendale on his season in the California heat

English Players Abroad

James Baxendale realised a career dream during 2017. He spent the latter part of that year playing in California for Orange County SC, who play in the second tier, known as the USL. Despite it being just a seven month spell in the States, it helped the midfielder finally achieve his goal of playing abroad.

“It has always been an ambition of mine to play football abroad,” says Baxendale. “I love football and how the game is played in other countries fascinates me. I always said to myself that unless I was playing top level football by the age of 25 then I would pursue playing outside of England.

“When I was in the youth team at Leeds United and as a first year pro at Doncaster Rovers I made as many enquiries as I could to go and play in Scandinavia but unfortunately nothing materialised out there.”

Born in…

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They thought I was lazy…when I was just actually autistic

the silent wave

One of my father’s Pearls of Wisdom was that “excuses are for losers”.  Although I find myself agreeing with that statement fairly often, I’m (very) well aware that humans are, well, human, and that we have our limitations.  This is especially true for people on the Asperger’s/autism spectrum.

What complicates matters is that our limitations are different for each of us.  What complicates matters more is that our limitations may change from day to day; what we could accomplish yesterday, we may not be able to do today.  And what makes the situation even worse is that some of those limitations may be invisible, and thus, unknown or unrealized.  This, too, especially true for Aspie/autistic people.

On the surface, we may appear able-bodied and of capable intelligence.

And yet…there are times when our limitations get in the way of something we want or need to do.  We get frustrated with…

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Teenager Arrested For Selling Lettuce to Desperate Vegans on Hove Street Corner

The Brighton Bulletin


A 19 year old from Brighton was arrested last night after being caught green fingered selling salad to what the police described as ‘desperate individuals’ on a street corner in Hove.

Paul Hayes, of London Road, was detained at 11.30pm after an anonymous tip off from the general public led the police to Grand Avenue where they discovered Mr Hayes ‘serving up’ to a large queue of vegans and health conscious Hove mums. A subsequent search of the suspect’s car revealed courgettes, aubergines and traces of broccoli.

Brighton’s large vegan population combined with the recent shortage of salad as a result of poor weather on the continent, has driven individuals to seek alternatives ways of getting their vegetable fix. Sgt Mike Wilcox of Sussex Police said, ‘This is becoming a big problem now. We believe a large amount of salad has been smuggled into the country from South America. The…

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Dab Cams and Dud Cups; on the FA’s Failing of Lower League Clubs

popular STAND fanzine

Up on the Wembley big screens, as England were preparing to face Malta, the pre-match audio-visual assault of corporate messages paused long enough to herald the introduction of Dab Cam. As fans took their seats a roaming lens flitted about the stadium and zoomed in on supporters and remained fixed on their gurning faces until they made a misguided and peer-pressured attempt at performing ‘the dab’. And so, another new in-stadium phenomenon was instantly born; the Mexican Cringe.

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The Left’s problem with Anti-Semitism


Let’s be very clear – many on the British far-left (and far too many Muslims unfortunately) don’t believe the state of Israel should exist. (See this on the ‘Stop the War’ website as an example.)

They think it is a racist state akin to apartheid South Africa and it needs to be destroyed. They believe the displacement of Palestinians as the state was created is an historic injustice that can only be righted by – one way or another – abolishing the Jewish state.

Ramalah Aug 77

(The picture is me [left] as part of an NUS Executive delegation that visited Israel/Palestine in 1978 – also in the picture are Trevor Phillips and David Aaronovitch)

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