Oh dear God. RIP Mick Parker. Mr Parker We Salute You! Sincere condolences. It's all so easy to trot out isn't it? But if these condolences are so sincere, would they have been posted had Parker joined Tottenham in the August transfer window? No chance! In fact some idiots in West Ham colours might well have taunted Parker during the game had he been wearing a Tottenham shirt. Just like they taunted Lampard after the death of his mother.
Scott Parker is being painted as some sort of hero because he took to the field only hours after his father died - and good on him for doing so - but I would have thought that it was a great way to get it out of his system personally. Tell me, as we praise Parker for playing a game of football, how many Japanese people "did their duty" within hours of their loved ones dying in the tsunami? How many soldiers press on after friends and colleagues fall in battle? How many Libyans will be at work today after family members have died courtesy of a peace keeping cruise missile? Parker probably saw things in context as he stood for a minute's silence out of respect for the Japanese tsunami. Yes his thoughts would have been with his father, but that death and personal loss must have been contextualised by events elsewhere. To parade personal grief at such a time might have felt inappropriate so Parker soldiered on.
Mick Parker died after a prolonged illness so the death was hardly a surprise and may possibly, in its way, have been a blessed release. It certainly was when my father was released from the agony of lung cancer. I was in work the day after he died. Earlier this month, a colleague's father died during the working day: he completed the working day before going home to begin the grieving process and, having made provisional arrangements for the funeral, was in work by mid day of the following day. Life goes on. It has to.
Scotty played a game of football after his father died following a prolonged illness. Some might say big bloody deal given there are children in school today in Japan whose parents are missing following the tsunami. They had no time to prepare themselves for the shock of death. Let's get a sense of perspective here can we? Life doesn't stop; it can't. How could Parker look himself in the mirror if he had sat out the game and watched that minute's silence for the thousands wiped out in Japan? There are doctors, nurses, policemen, teachers, soldiers, firemen, rescue workers in Japan who have lost fathers, brothers, spouses, children...and they are getting on with life, because they have to. We make such a fuss because somebody is a footballer. Good on Parker, but he got on with the job in the way that millions of others do around the world over the course of a year.
But it is the hollow nature of the commiserations that strike me. How sincere are they? Just imagine for a moment if Parker had joined Spurs. That's how sincere! Look at the treatment of Lampard, that's the respect shown to the dearly departed on the football terraces sadly.
I'm sorry for your loss Scott. But it happens as I'm sure you understand. Especially in the light of events in Japan.
And for all those posting RIP on the net, which is so easy to do and so hollow in consequence, how about buying a card and sending it courtesy of the club? Or better still, send the £5 you would spend on a card and postage to help the victims of the tsunami. In a situation like this, action really does speak louder than internet typed words.