12 July 2006

Lip Service

What with all the touristettes who come over and fall in lurve with our handsome sons of Odysseus, marry and deliver them strapping sons, the subject of cunning lingualism is of real interest.

I once met a debb and duff expert who could read lips and I asked him how he coped with those whose lips fluently mouthed not just Greek but other languages in the same smooth sentence. He conceded a certain challenge.

Which is why I'm interested to read Sportsmail's boast that, thanks to "an expert lip reader", it's cracked the provocative "Materazzi Comment" that was red rag to Zidane's bullish attack.

Speaking in his native Italian, Materazzi is meant to have grabbed his opponent as the ball bounced away from them with an uttered,

"Hold on, wait, that one's not for *****(dregs) like you."

Zidane's response was not visible, but as the players walked forward Materazzi said:

"We all know you are the son of a terrorist whore."

Just before the butt, he was seen saying:

"So just f*** off."
So there.

But here's the dodgy bit: the Mail's lip-reader is "employed in court cases as an expert witness, can understand foreign languages phonetically and the translatation was made with the aid of an Italian interpreter whose transcript supports Zidane's claim that Materazzi had made a 'very serious' comment."

Absolute bollocks. What? Brit expert lipster picks up unintelligible foreign twaddle which he passes on to interpreter who correctly translates it into Itie and thence onward into English in all its clarity? What codswallop, but it gets better.

  • Materazzi is meant to have said, It's a stitch-up guv, I never called 'im no terrorist.
  • But he does admit that he 'tweaked' the France captain's nipple as they clashed in extra time. Ooh, the cheeky chappie - whatever next?
  • Zidane *then* responded: "If you want my shirt so much, you can f****** have it after the game", to which Materazzi bounced back with the scintillatingly witty "I'd rather have the shirt off your woman."

    I don't know how these chaps do it - cultivate such esprit d'escalier  *and* make practice each week.

    But which version is it?

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