Friday, 10 June 2005

Queen's Birthday Redux

How I spent Queen's Birthday 2004,

There are many different ways to win a football match. To list them all would take two hours, so we’ll do it another day, but I can safely say that today’s match comes under the heading of “Dramatic comeback victory. Undeserved�?

And I’m sad to announce that the idiots at the MCC have come up with a sponsor driven technical ‘innovation’ even more offensive and annoying than Vodafone and their bloody fan cam. Following on from the television concept of telling us in a small box on the screen what the probability of players kicking a goal from their set shots and thanks to the dollars of St George bank they’ve gone mad and introduced the same thing which takes up the entire scoreboard and seemingly uses a random number generator to decide the probability. Absolutely bloody stupid idea. You’re having a shot for goal and trying to concentrate and there’s a big bloody thing on the scoreboard telling you that you’re a 75% chance to drill it. I’d like to suggest that they hand St George back their money and wipe this ‘amazing’ new concept - so ‘amazing’ that it didn’t even work when they tried to show it before the game - from history immediately.

The game itself? The first 20 minutes of the first quarter were interesting as ther Pies ran around like your proverbial headless chicken and we threw everything at them but failed to capitalise and put them away early. The result of this was that by quarter time they were within two goals and by halfway through the second they were in front. Then it started to get ugly as the rain pissed down in a way that reminded us all of Waverley Park and why Telstra Dome is a massive corporate fraud. And with the good weather left us so did Melbourne who took the spirit of grassroots football week to heart and played like the Diamond Valley Under 9’s composite side. Those of us who refused to look at a long range weather forecast and showed up in short sleeve editions of the club jumper understood why you’d play shit in that sort of weather but refused to accept it nonetheless.

When Leon ‘useless’ Davis goaled to send them 30 points in front early in the third quarter I’d had enough and went to the TAB instead where they were rude enough to have the bloody game on televisions there as well. When Neitz decided to slap a headlock on one of their players and gave away a pointless free-kick I chucked one of the epic tantrums of all time in front of the tab televisions, belted one of the tables and walked away. One of my fellow Melbourne fans came after me to say that we’d kicked a goal (Davey I think) but I was too busy cracking the shits about the free kick to really notice. I wandered back to the televisions a few later to see what had happened and there were four cops standing there. I am so claiming responsibility for that. It was THAT loud a spray - and one the likes of which I hadn’t delivered since we played Richmond under lights last season.

I returned reluctantly for the last quarter with the margin randomly cut to 16. The Collingwood fans were declaring it all over and that we’d piss it in but I, naturally, wasn’t confident.

Thankfully the Collingwood fans were right and we fell over the line by nine points. I’d like to retract 50% of the abuse I handed out to Matthew Whelan and David Neitz during the game and 25% of the Chris Heffernan angst as they all decided to show up and play in the last quarter.

It was one of those days where nobody could have disagreed too stridently if Andrew “Knob�? Demetriou had pranced out onto the ground and declared that both teams were too shit to win and declared it a draw. Same thing goes for the Brownlow votes - I expect it to be 3, 2 and 1 votes to absolutely nobody. Possibly to the goal umpires who fell over, or were run into players at least twice during the game and had to ask somebody else what had happened.

And Brodie Holland is a prime contender for ‘worst haircut in the AFL’. For those of you who haven’t had the pleasure it’s some bizarre cross between a mullet and a skinhead.

They’re nowhere near the standard required to win one but I’ve started thinking about Grand Finals after this game. More importantly how I’m going to murder the entire AFL commission if we make it and I can’t get a ticket because they’ve given 50000 of them to dirty corporate scum who show up for one game a year or scalp their ticket for $700. I shall reread American Psycho for inspiration but you can be assured that it will involve a chainsaw and a coat hanger.

As for next week I’m not confident. Essendon might have been destroyed by Brisbane in the second half on Saturday night, but as we all found out in the most offensive possible way two weeks ago Melbourne is no Brisbane. If we’re lucky Dustin Fletcher will get suspended and even though in any other week I’d annoint Damien Peverill as my new favourite player for putting that fat arse doctor on the turf the other night I must insist that he’s made an example of and suspended for one week.

If it's that tense this Monday I'll have a five alarm heart attack.

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