Sunday, 25 April 2010

A Moment Of Passion With Luton Andy

"I'll look at the blog to see what Georgina thought of it", said Luton Andy, in his email to My Lover today.

So I'll tell you.

Firstly, it was a radically different experience to the one I was anticipating.

In many ways.

For one thing the crowd was completely different to one you would see at a football match.

I am struggling to put my finger on quite what the different features of the two demographics are, but my new environment reminded me of my days doing this.

And then there was the pitch. There was so much extra turf around it. And whilst the game was going on, people are playing on the sides, doing warm ups and I don't know what.

There were people loafing at the edges. People running about in daps. Cameramen (or camera operators as the PC police would have it) here, there and everywhere.

They even had people running on with drinks bottles whilst play was going on.

I half expected one of the players to answer a mobile phonecall at some point.

The other thing that astonished me, having only ever seen rugby on the television, with screenshots usually no more than a few men wide, I had not appreciated that for much of the time, most of the pitch is empty, and all the play is happening in a line.

My highlights?
  • Soldiers abseiling from the top of the stands with Cross of St George flags
  • Meeting up with Luton Andy, family and friends beforehand for sausage and mash, arranged to resemble a rugby goalpost, complete with chocolate egg
  • Pre-match and half time entertainment (a step up from The Walkers where people trying to kick a ball through the window of a Wicks shed passed for half-time entertainment)
  • The lush pizza I had on the way home.
  • Seeing Gareth Malone crossing the street
But the weirdest thing of all, the thing I really couldn't get my head around, was that lots of the crowd spent much of the match chatting. About all sorts.

That is what shocked me most.

And when I was talking to Luton Andy at the end, we agreed that Rugby was nice to watch.

But Football is where our passion burns.

A poingnant moment.

We both understood without having to explain.


Luton Andy said...

Georgina - thanks for your comments about Twixers - it's worth mentioning that it was not an ordinary club rugby match and many people there were attracted by the entertainment, St Georges Day marketing, Help for Heroes and very good prices (you cant get into Twixers for £20 any other time. So a lot of people there were not into the game. On the other hand - I was at Kenilworth Rd BH Monday to see 2nd leg of BSP play off Hatters v Minstermen. The tension was incredible and most LT fans were confident - after all we finished 10 points higher than York and scored most goals in the league. But we couldn't score and conceded a tap in. York deserved it but the horror of losing was devastating. Another season in non league football was not expected. stevenage fans have called us arrogant but look at our history - FA Cup finalists in 1959, League Cup winners in 1988 and finalists in 1989. Only 4 years ago we finished 10th in the Championship! The fans have suffered dodgy directors asset stripping the club by selling their best players (Foley, Dave Edwards & Boyce are still in the premiership & of course, there's Steve Howard and Leon Barnett in the championship )! The FA & Football League have treated us (the fans) abysmally with successive points deductions over 3 seasons totalling 50 points. No one can condone the violence at the end of the match and I'm embarrassed to be associated with such thugs. However I was so disappointed, that on the day, we failed to win.
Passion - something that rugby doesn't have in such extremes!!

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