18th June 2021

It seems to be impossible to avoid sport at present. For those of you who shudder at those words, I apologise, feel free to ignore the remainder of this “thought.” But I am looking forward to my visit to Ashton Gate in over a year on Saturday to watch the Bristol Bears play in the semi-final of the Premiership play-off.

I am also enjoying the glut of football that is on my television as the Euros get going. I could not help but admire the skill, grace and arrogance of Christiano Ronaldo as he scored twice in Portugal’s opening fixture to set yet more goalscoring records. It’s not just me; this man has over 100 million Instagram followers and is admired by young people across the world.

It was also brilliant, the following morning, to watch the start of his post-match press conference. The sponsors had ostentatiously set two generous bottles of Coca Cola in front of him. Ronaldo deliberately moved them to one side, picked up a bottle of water (which had been much less prominent than the Coke) and declared “agua”.

The press gleefully reported the $4 billion which instantly came off Coca Cola’s share value. However, I thought of all those impressionable girls and boys who are constantly being urged to drink processed, sweetened and carbonated drinks. But who will copy everything they see their great hero doing.

Sometimes we don’t need to use many words. Our actions can speak far more eloquently.

Nick Parsons