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EXCLUSIVE: Morrissey, Sir Alex, Shaun Ryder: UNIQUE Book Club

Confidential tells you exactly as it was-ish

Published on December 27th 2013.

EXCLUSIVE: Morrissey, Sir Alex, Shaun Ryder: UNIQUE Book Club

CONFIDENTIAL got a real scoop this holiday.

On Boxing Day Sleuth managed to bring together three great Manchester literary figures to talk to each other about their celebrated 2013 books. They'd all promised to stay in over Christmas and read the epic works. 

Thus Morrissey, Sir Alex Ferguson and Shaun Ryder discussed Morrissey: Autobiography, Alex Ferguson: My Autobiography and Shaun Ryder's book about alien visitors to Earth, What Planet Am I On?

Sat together over tea and crumpets in the Koffee Pot in the Northern Quarter, Shaun Ryder got the discussion under way.

Shaun Ryder's masterpieceShaun Ryder's masterpieceSR (Shaun Ryder): There are stories that my area Little Hulton in Salford was an estate that was attacked by body-snatching aliens around the time I was born.

M (Morrissey): There's living proof of that before me now.

SAF (Sir Alex Ferguson): Do you really believe in aliens Shaun, or have you been doing a little too much mirror, mirror on the wall?

SR: Of course I do, there's a bit of alien in us all. Morrissey suffers from permanent alienation, and how did your face become so red, Sir Alex? Weird eh? Alien visitations would explain so much about everything. 

M: Would it explain the demise of the gentle, wry humour of the kitchen-sink drama and the vulgarisation of the whole of British television, or the abhorrent evil of the Thatcher years? The horror, the horror. Would it explain the awful way Rough Trade abused me throughout The Smiths' time together? They persecuted me while I, unaware, read Simone de Beauvoir in lonely garretts in cold Manchester.

SAF: Listen I'm on record as not being a fan of Maggie, but don't you think you obssess about her too much, Morrissey? You're as self-centred as Beckham was with all that catwalk, metrosexual nonsense. Your book goes on and on about this like a Rafa Benitez interview. I couldn't finish the thing.

SR: To be frank Sir A, I never got through your book either. To be frank I never got through my own.  

Morrissey's letter to himselfMorrissey's letter to himselfM: I've read my autobiography from cover to cover over five hundred times and it never tires me. Everytime I think of the way I was betrayed by Mike Joyce and so many other people who I only ever treated with kindness, why then I need a camomile tea and a lie down.

SR: Good thing about my book is I got to go to Chile and other places all over the world were I found conclusive proof how aliens control important companies and household names; Coca Cola, Manchester United...

SAF: Now lad, the Glazers are a bit strange but that's pushing it. My main inspiration behind writing my book was clear. It was my wife Roy Keane who suggested it. Without her this wouldn't have been possible. She was the one who encouraged me every step of the way. 

M: So it's true behind every angry man, there's an even angrier man. 

SAF: She said you've got to tell people your story. How a working class lad from Goven...

M: Oh no angels faint, this is when we hear about the solidarity of the shipyards and that Glasgow spirit for about a millennium. Stop me if you think you're heard this one before. 

SAF: Aye, they were real men in those days in Govan, men of iron and steel, who forged with their bare hands mighty ships that sailed the globe...hey you two, stop falling asleep. 

SR: What position do you think Mozza would have had in your United teams, Sir Alex?

SAF: Well we always needed someone to carry a damp sponge on to the pitch when there were injuries.

SR: And me?

M: You'd be the mascot. 

SR: I'd like that. The Red Devil costume reminds me of an alien I once saw after a party in Droylsden in 1988. I was off my head but it was definitely real. Good days. Mozza, let's reform the band.

M: Shaun, dear boy. We weren't in the same band. 

SR: Weren't we? Wasn't it you, me, Ian Brown, Hooky, all of them?

M: No, no, Shaun. The other Manchester bands of the eighties were brutes led by that brute Wilson who stole so much of my thunder and constantly ran me down. The Smiths were the intelligent, gentle spring flowers of the whole scene, until of course I was betrayed by the other members. Betrayed by those I loved....

SR: If we start a band, the original Smiths merged with the original Happy Mondays, I could be the singer and you could be Bez. He's gone crazy keeping bees in Wales so we need a freaky dancer. You'd be great.

Alex Ferguson gets it rightAlex Ferguson gets it rightSAF: Music's not important, it's the leadership in these books that matters. It's about gently cajoling people by shouting in their face until they fulfil your every vision. Above all my book was the best I read of the three and reveals I was right. Not about everything, of course, but about all the big things - well mainly I was right about everything.

M: Yes, thank you, Sir Alex (how could you accept the award of such a imperialist title by the way?) my book is the best. It proves that I, Morrissey, was completely correct all along, despite everybody trying to make me despair every second of every minute of every hour of every day. It's amazing I survived. They're all still after my money, the fiends.

SR: None of you could have done it without aliens of course. My book proves that. Or in my case it was more about spirits than aliens. I had a ghost writer. Anyway I'm off - I'll buy you some maracas Morrissey.

At this point the literary giants parted. Sir Alex Ferguson to watch another United game, seven tiers up from the new manager David Moyes, staring at the back of Moyes' neck. Shaun Ryder went away with the fairies. Morrissey stayed put and carried on talking about himself. For days. 

SleuthSleuthSleuth is a sideways glance at the city every week, it's the truth, but Sleuth's truth. He's several people all at once. We give £25 for every story/rumour and piece of absurdity you find for us to publish. Sleuth sometimes even gets serious. We ask for the money back if any legal action follows. Follow Sleuth on twitter @mcrsleuth

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