Deconstructing the Dalglish Conjecture

The following was instigated by a discussion on Twitter with @Sir Fariku on the case for football as a compelling metaphor for a bloke’s dating life and the Brothers With No Game series on Which Footballer Are You?

In the 1997 movie ‘My Best Friend’s Wedding‘ directed by P.J. Hogan, Julianne Potter (played by Julia Roberts) finds herself facing a conundrum of sorts. Her long term friend, Michael O’Neil (played by Dermot Mulroney) informs her a few days short of her own 28th birthday of his impending marriage to Kimberly (played by Cameron Diaz). This should be great news, except for the small matter of a pact between Julianne and Michael where they had agreed that if they remained single till they turned 28, they would get married to each other. She also believes (rightly or wrongly) that Kimberly is the wrong person for him to get married to.

This conundrum is eerily similar to the situation which faced a certain Mr Kenneth Dalglish in the summer of 2010. Rafa Benitez, had just led Liverpool football club to an utterly deflating 7th place finish in the Premiership against a sordid back story of boardroom unrest, player dissatisfaction and an overall feeling of malaise. Messers Hicks and Gillet, our very own American shysters, seemed intent on running the club aground, not helped by the millstone of money owed to a certain nationalised bank. When Rafa Benitez was moved on, what was a bad situation became life threatening when a shortlist of replacements was revealed – a certain Mr Roy Hodgson was being promoted by the English paper as a safe pair of hands to guide the club through what were truly dark times. Legend has it, that Kenny was so dissapointed by the shortlist that he immediately offered his services as manager as he felt he could do a much better job than those being considered.

Any football fan of some pedigree would recognise the parallels here. Just like Julianne and Michael, ‘King’ Kenny and Liverpool had a long and distinguished connection, one that made him feel compelled to throw his hat into the ring to ‘save’ the club. Both the King and Julianne Potter, fell prey to what I describe as the Dalglish Conjecture – the (right or wrong) belief that there is a duty owed to a close friend to intervene in their affairs to prevent the occurence of a fatal mistake. At its core is a commendable, if not entirely altruistic, sense of loyalty that somehow concludes that the greater good is served by the sacrifice of ones independence on the altar of loyalty to a friend.

In the more general case, I find that this conjecture occurs fairly regularly between guys and girls who are long term friends and have developed an understanding that seems to be lacking in the various potential mates they fall in with. One party often concludes that given the inefficiences in the various hook ups they get into, it would make a lot more sense to step into the breach and offer their ‘services’ as a potential dating partner.

Given the foregoing, I therefore present to you the Dalglish conjecture:

Given any interaction universe U, populated with elements ei, each having a unique time-dependent intrinsic spin function Si(t); for any two elements with identical but opposite spin frequencies in a state of mutually non-intrusive interaction, if the near field intrusive interaction coefficient ku is less than 1, the optimum interaction state of both elements is a mutually intrusive one.

Unfortunately, this is only a conjecture and is unproven. Any implementation of this in a real life dating situation is entirely at the users’ risk.