John Gooden

Presenter. Commentator. Writer. Producer

John Gooden is an international presenter, sports commentator, voice over artist and writer

Filtering by Tag: comedy

Mobile phone rant number 2 and 3


The young people of today have found another use of mobile phones: they are mobile sound systems. If you really wanna annoy people, download the top ten 'grime' tracks (probably illegally, through one of those file sharing means), upload onto your mobile phone and whilst your waiting to get served your Big Mac meal at McDonalds, play it at full, tinny volume so that all the other hungry customers can hear that shizzle. When did this become socially acceptable? My tinnitus is bad enough without that angry music in street-speak shrieking out of some bad-boy's pocket. What’s wrong with headphones and an iPod? I've also noticed that the very same groups try to engage in conversation whilst that crap is spitting out of their phones. I blame the parents.


Mobile phones themselves are a essential part of today's lifestyle, though has anybody thought that the concept is also a little ill-mannered. By switching your mobile phone on you are giving someone, in fact anyone, the opportunity to climb into your pocket, car, onto your desk etc and shout ANSWER ME NOW. ANSWER ME. NOW! When someone contacts you, you could be in throws of passion with someone you love and some bastard on the other end of the phone is demanding your attention. That person wants you to stop the beautiful moment you are enjoying. Its possibly the moment that you sow your seed to bring about the birth of your child. They want you to stop and talk about bloody phone insurance. Yes you can press the silence button, but you have still had to break the rhythm. If it was on silent, it will probably be vibrating against the glass of water on the bedside table. If not then it will be flashing like an SOS signal "STOP SCREWING AND ANSWER ME!". Wrong, very wrong.  And what about those who aren’t satisfied with calling just the once and listening to “sorry I can’t come phone right now I'm having a liver transplant in a bid to save my life, but I'll get back to you asap". No, they call again, just in case that surgery finished ahead of schedule. Afterall, it is ringing!

Mobile phone rant number 1

I have a few issues with mobile phones.  OK, so we pretty much all own a mobile phone. They are no longer luxury items as there were in the 90s with the yuppies. I've had one since I was 17 and now kids of 7 are putting them on their Christmas lists. Old people have them too, I know this as my gran sent me an x-rated joke from hers only the other day! So now that we've established we all have mobiles, young and old, rich and poor, why is it that there's always someone on the train that has to let every other passenger know that he has a phone?? They're not exclusive, mate.  It’s not impressive anymore that you are communicating with someone that you cannot see or that possibly isn't in the same country. So have a little thought and whisper into the phone or shut the hell up.

Y'see, no one speaks into a mobile phone at a normal speech volume. It seems people forget all etiquette and force their conversations on other people. Take for example this situation: You are sat around a table with 6 friends and you are enjoying their company. You are discussing the finer points of why UK summer festivals are so damn expensive, then 2 fellas dressed in suits come flying through air, smash down into the middle of the table and talk over you about a marketing meeting in Birmingham next week and the fact they hope Claire will be there cos her assets are the best in the company. Would this annoy you? Yes it would, and why is that so different from some pleb forcing the same sentiments around carriage number 4 of the London St Pancras to Bedford? Its simple, tell them you'll phone them back. Don't tell the caller you are on a train and carry on regardless. This may in fact find you choking on your Blackberry Pearl after an annoyed passenger, who may share my moan, takes it upon themselves to silence you.

In Japan, it is socially irresponsible to make or take a call on public transport. If they do, because somebody has died or their mistress has just pissed on a stick and its turned blue, they whisper. More than this they cup their hand over their mouth and phone receiver and whisper. Nobody need know they were communicating...much better.

Dublin, Ireland

Cage Warriors 47 was always going to be massive; 2 title fights, 1 womens mma tournament fight as well as the usual top level match making. Wow! For this one, Mrs G was coming along too!  I have to say at this point that my wife is not an MMA fan.  She used to see me as her kind of Rocky, when I would roll home sporting all manner of bruising and swelling, but it all changed for reasons I wont go into right now.  It was therefore a pretty big thing.  As we were over in Dublin, she was going to pick up a travel guide and explore whatever it is ladies like to explore.  Unfortunately, we were staying in a hotel in the middle of nowhere and that put paid to that plan!

After arriving at the hotel, the usual madness set in as the weigh ins were now done and I had to interview the fighters for the VTs.  I actually really enjoy this part.  I would have pretty much interviewed all of these guys before and this gives me an insight into their responses.  There was a real variation of responses in these interviews; on the one hand you had Dave Hill dropping the 'f' bomb quite frequently and on the other David Bielkheden was pretty cagey.  Sitting down with Rosi Sexton was good fun though...she's such an intelligent person and really considers every responses and certainly will not be led- I really like that.

Show morning brought about my first Irish incident just before breakfast.  A couple of the crew advised me there was a short cut back to the main building through some bushes (we were quite bizarrely staying in shared houses a few minutes walk from the hotel).  With time of the essence I thought I'd use this short cut, but I wished I never did.  Y'see at 8am on showday I'm a little preoccupied and sensitive, so skidding on the dead corpse of a cat was not a great start.  The smell will stay with me for a very long time- nasssssty!  Despite this unfortunate incident I was able to hold down some food and get going on the voice overs for the VTs.

There are too many stand out points to this show, but I have to mention the 'commentary position'.  Josh and I have really struggled with the commentary set ups recently.  Overseas they have been a night mare and we were finally back in the neighbourhood where all would be perfect!  It was so good to see we had volume controls, commentary mics, ear pieces and an english-speaking sound man who had a good sense of humour (that helps in live TV!).  Things were going so well too until Cathal The Punisher Pendred started a take down from about 10m away and drove UFC vet- David Bielkheden, all the way across to our position which knocked one of the screens clean off the table!  After our very nice sound man fellow put us back together we were good to go.  The only thing  that could upset our table for technical goodies would be me knocking over a can of Monster or fidgeting so bad I could kick a cable out of a socket.  Well not quite.  What could also happen is that after winning the featherweight world title, Notorious Conor McGregor could be so overcome with emotion he could climb the cage wall just above where we are sat and free fall onto our commentary set up en-route to celebrate with his loyal following.  And, he did!  In fact I took a head shot which knocked my cans off my head and more frustrating; my valuable caffeine based energy drink was hugely depleted after being shared across the commentary mixer!  I wouldn't however change this moment for the world.  What a true expression of someone's feelings after they have achieved their piece of history.  And actually if Conor hadn't joined us in the commentary booth, I'm fairly confident  a few of his enthusiastic supporters would have tried to get in the cage, which might not have been so cool!  Congrats to Conor and DJ Linderman on their title wins, and a special mention has to go out to Aisling Daly, Rosi Sexton and Cathal Pendred who all made for an incredible night of action.

Part 1 of February 2012

2012 was always going to be an interesting year as 2011 was pretty damn special;  I got married and had the most incredible day with the most amazing woman which culminated with a dreamy honeymoon; I had helped create two new business under our existing business umbrella; I had survived 6 days and nights in Vegas; planning permission had been granted on our house extension and Cage Warriors announced 17 shows in 12 months.  Oh, and they were going to be aired on Sky Sports as well as other international networks!  There was little time to consider 'how?' and it was time to get my head down!

February was a pretty good benchmark as we had 3 shows, 2 abroad so it was going to a tight process.  The good thing was the continuity- as a presenter and commentator who has  only really been active in the last few years (my earlier attempts during my young 20s aside), camera time and establishing your style is key.  Whats more, developing the relationship with whomever you are working alongside is also important.  Despite the fact that these exploits are currently part-time for me, I want to deliver something that looks seasoned.  Having plenty of practice will help me get there, but there are obstacles!!!

My first challenge for our opening show in 2012 came to light when I checked into my room in Beirut, Lebanon.  It was a fine hotel and I actually had my own room, which saved my usual room-mate, Josh Palmer, from listening to my pre-show playlist (we have slightly different tastes) and slightly frantic behaviour on show day.  After throwing my (over-sized) suitcase on to the bed, it became clear I had lost the key to the new lock.  This was then followed by having to search out the most sturdy tool I could find to break said lock.  That sturdy tool came in the shape of a butter knife!  So with tired eyes and a carpenter's precision I took to sawing the padlock off my case so that I could unzip the case free the suit and bow tie that awaited selection.  Needless to say, there was a small injury, sweat, expletives and a broken zip!

Meeting the various fighters on this show was very exciting; guys like Tommy Speer, Matts Nilsson, Victor Cheng and Kyle Watson.  Special mention to Tommy Speer's brother who was pure entertainment and also to Domingos Mestre for being one of the nicest guys with some great stories.  One of the thigns I love about meeting people is learnging about their story of how they came to be here and Domingos had a great one.