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The Hoddle of Coffee: Tottenham Hotspur news and links for Wednesday, February 3

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Brighton & Hove Albion v Tottenham Hotspur - Premier League Photo by Matthew Ashton - AMA/Getty Images

Hey, everyone!

How funny was Bernd Leno’s red card yesterday?

Ramble of the Day

One of the habits I’ve developed while limiting outdoor activity because of the pandemic is occasionally turning on the Food Network and paying attention to the programming. (I really didn’t watch the channel that much before last March.) I accidentally discovered the very strange show Supermarket Stakeout last year, and I hoped there would be more wacky shows on the channel. Last week, I found another one: Kitchen Crash.

Unfortunately, there isn’t a trailer for this show, but I will press on anyway. A group of chefs drive into a small American town — in the episode I partly watched, the group was in New Jersey but I have no idea if they visit the same place each time. They are then tasked with knocking on doors in this town and asking the people that live there for ingredients, and then cook in kitchens parked on the street. It’s not as weird as paying people for their groceries as they walk out of the grocery store, but it’s still pretty weird.

The show itself is only so significant, but I realized something before I decided it was too boring to hold my attention — I spend a lot of time watching television and thinking about the COVID-19 protocols involved. In this case, a message about everyone following the safety guidelines appeared during the show as we watched strangers interact without masks. It was a relief to see, but I couldn’t get myself to quit thinking.

I imagined the explanation was this: Either showrunners thought everyone wearing masks on screen was unappealing, or their feelings don’t really matter because it’s become an industry standard, or they instituted protocols that would make masks seemingly unnecessary because everyone was being tested enough. I’ll guess the third, and as a result I’ll guess the residents of the random town were selected in advance, eliminating the sense of randomness. They may have selected those people in advance, anyway, so it might not have mattered much, but like I mentioned, I really can’t get myself to not think about it.

I do that watching some of the currently running fictional shows that are supposed to take place during our current time periods, too. You can really clearly tell which showrunners find masks to obstruct the art of acting — after all, the face does a lot of work in acting and you lose a lot of that wearing a mask. It still gets on my nerves a bit, though — I feel like the choice should either be to go all in or ignore the whole pandemic all together because watching characters wear them selectively is not a lot of fun for me.

Anyway, I bring this up partly because it’s a ramble and there’s always a relatively high probability I will change course at any point. The other thing, though, is that I have been wondering if other people do this, so I imagine if I bring it up, someone might engage.

tl;dr: I watched another weird Food Network show and also wonder if other people watch tv thinking about COVID-19 protocols.

Stay informed, read this: hockey player Saroya Tinker’s letter launching her Black Girl Hockey Scholarship Fund, for which she’s raising money on GoFundMe

Links of the Day

Real Madrid president Florentino Pérez tested positive for COVID-19.

Manchester City’s Sergio Agüero is weeks away from returning to the pitch as he continues to battle COVID-19.

The FA is investigating whether or not Morecambe’s Yann Songo’o used a homophobic slur during a match against Tranmere.

Marseille fired André Villas-Boas after he admitted to sending a resignation letter.

India’s Odisha fired manager Stuart Baxter after making an analogy to rape in a post-match press conference.

David Squires recaps recent upsets and a managerial change in the Premier League in his latest cartoon.

A longer read: David Conn on the financial state of Burnley after its takeover by an American consortium, which has left the club in debt for The Guardian