Here at FHM, we have been pondering the things that are strangely inspiring - be they feats of endurance, moments of gallantry or the collapse of a famous chef's career. What do you think of our suggestions? Get in touch if you have any other ideas...
11/ Goal of the month on Match Of The Day
The six minutes of the month when the Premiership ceases to be about knuckle-headed bigotry, a masochistic devotion to doomed causes and a level of money-grabbing gamesmanship that would shame Mohammed al-Fayed. As soon as GOTM fires up, it’s like being an excitable eight-year-old at your first match all over again. Stick some vaguely anthemic indie music over the top and you’re welling up.
10/ A three-legged cat pursuing an able-bodied cat
Mr Boots hasn’t been quite the same since those weird blokes set their dog on him and filmed it on their phones. But it’s not going to stop him protecting his turf. The plucky little bastard’s an example to us all (especially his owner, who turns off the lights and hides upstairs every Halloween in case ‘those kids from the estate’ come knocking).
9/ Helping a woman on some stairs with a pushchair
You, oozing alpha-male ‘protector’ musk, doing your bit to remind this fallen woman that chivalry still exists, that M People song about ‘What have you done today to make you feel proud’ playing on your internal jukebox. A bit of light hearted flirting with mum to make her feel ‘all woman’ again…You’re like Nigel Havers, if Nigel Havers had just sweated a whopping great Rorschach blot through the back of his suit and was having trouble standing up straight now.
8/ Comic Relief films about C-list celebs going to Africa
George Lamb looking a bit dumbstruck next to a bony cow. Denise Van Outen welling up in a malaria clinic. Gary Barlow doing a traditional dance in a grass skirt while Take That’s Greatest Day swells up in the background… and it’s not a coincidence that they re-run these just as you’re getting in from the pub and feeling guilty.
7/ An old bloke in a proper suit and tie
Especially when it’s 6am and you’re waddling home after a big night out and he’s made all that effort even though he’s just going out to get a newspaper and a pint of milk. It’s evidence of real moral fibre and the spirit that made this country great. Not evidence of, say, being paralysed by grief since the death of his wife, racked by insomnia and desperate for someone to talk to. No, don’t say it’s that.
6/ Training montage scenes from otherwise abysmal martial arts films
Obviously, the famous ones – Rocky, The Karate Kid – are among cinema’s greatest moments. But even the risible ones – No Retreat, No Surrender – are weirdly uplifting. And if you’re alone in the house, will lead to at least five minutes of attempting to do a fingertip push up and roundhouse the dog while listening to pumping synth rock.
5/ Queen’s The Show Must Go On
Forget Don’t Stop Me Now – this was Freddie’s real masterpiece. We like to think that if we were on the verge of keeling over from Aids we’d have the balls to give the grim reaper a defiant two fingers of this theatrical magnitude. We like to think that, but obviously the reality would involve pints of black market morphine, uncontrollable sobbing and several bet-hedging deathbed conversions to any religion that’d take us.
4/ Really Fat People At The Gym
Treadmill set to 2mph, steam billowing off them like a racehorse, towel wedged round their neck like a fluffy collar, XXXXXL Help For Heroes promotional T-shirt soaked through already. Risking a heart attack, public mockery and an hour of pounding chart house just to get up there. Good for you, tubby. Just don’t even think about coming in the sauna afterwards, okay?
3/ The London Marathon, c.7pm
All the losers waddling over the finish line in the London Marathon, dressed as one half of a rhinoceros, three hours after the Kenyans finished, got their medals, and touched down back home at Jomo Kenyatta Airport in Nairobi. An absolute triumph of dedication over athletic ability, cardio-vascular fitness, or logic.
2/ Waking up without a hangover
Of all the benefits – not having a headache, being able to touch your lower back without wincing, not smelling like George Best’s corpse etc – it’s the overwhelming sense of productivity which is so mindblowing when you’ve been off the sauce for a few days. If you stayed off it permanently you could probably run for government, learn Japanese… hell, maybe even hold a relationship down.
1/ The implosion of Gordon Ramsay’s life and business
If only because it makes you think that all those lessons you learned as a child – about manners getting you a long way, bullies never prospering and bullshitters getting found out – might actually be true.