Friday, March 17, 2006

Damn!

Just composing a nice lengthy but pithy blog about the Rugby and what happens? Weird stuff happens and the whole lot goes *poof* Gone! Autosave? No such thing. Bugger. Start again.

Suffice to say that England beat the Aussies 14-12 at the end of a thoroughly entertaining day at the Telstra dome. The Aussie coach predictably whinged about it in a "it's so unfair" Kevin The Teenager stomp after their overly-physical approach resulted in 2 yellow card sin-binnings, but the real highlights were the battlers from Tonga who mugged South Africa, only to find themselves overrun by a willowy and previously ineffective Uganda team to earn the hugest cheers of the day.

Great that the crowd got so behind the underdogs throughout, roaring them on when they flattered to deceive - Spirit of the Games and all that. Pity the poor Sri Lankans though, pointless and inept, largely due to the genetic lottery that meant they can't build sufficient muscle and also seemed to cede a good 5-8 inches in height to most of the other teams. They still got a rousing send-off by their audience for their sheer pluck.

I bumped into some Aussies at the end. Young, anti-English and chock-full of booze, but thankfully not so concerned with Pom-bashing that they couldn't enjoy a bit of banter. Compare with the vitriol and bile from some of the older Aussies in my earshot, hateful and graceless even before a ball was kicked. England could have peed gold and sent them each home with a million quid and they would not have given even one us a bit of credit for anything. Ah well, welcome to my home. A real home from home, at times.

Anyway, one of the guys saw my QPR badge and shouted his mate over, whose family were originally all from West London and all QPR mad. A soulmate? A brother? Er. Nope.

"I f@#$ing hate soccah [sic]," was his opening gambit, "and I hate the f@#$ing English even more." O good. "In fact, can you take the f@#$ing Queen home with you and tell her not to come back?". Uh huh. "And while you're at it, take the f@#$ing abos and the f@#$ing gays with you too?".

Telling him that I wasn't actually responsible for her majesty, and was actually rather hoping that, as so many Aussies seemed so keen on Queenie [see Claud's post], that they might offer to have her settle over in Perth with the other Poms, didn't really seem to help. Or maybe Queensland, that sounds perfect for a monarch, eh?

More invective resulted from this approach, so cue gracious exit. I moved on to trying to persuade his mate that his idea to streak on the pitch wasn't perhaps the best idea at this point. There was a fine of $6000 to consider [don't ask me how I know that], although he may strike lucky and they may charge by the inch. Thankfully, my distraction technique hasn't waned whilst I've been off work, and though this took his mind off the naked dash idea, this was then replaced by lots of talk about his more sensitive regions and their similarity [or not] to ladies' more private areas. Ho hum.

End of game, whoop, celebration, quick shake of hands and a dash for the train.

They spotted me at Southern Cross Station as I waited for my train, shouting to everyone in earshot [good-naturedly and to general amusement with no actual physical reaction, thankfully], "Oi! He's a bloody Pom! He's English! Bash 'im! Bash 'im!" Trying to acknowledge their engagement with a witty response, whilst not drawing attention to the fact that they "knew" me was a little difficult, but I was saved by a bloke next to me, in his luminous work gear:

"You beat the Aussies, did you?" Erm, yeah, the Rugby. "I f@#$ing hate the Aussies!" Noticing his Australian accent, I asked where he was from. "Here. Born here." Okay. So the whole Aussie mentality thing, is that what you hate? Cronulla and the riots, all that? By his features, I guessed he may have been Lebanese or middle eastern in origin. "The South Africans beat the bastards at cricket too. I f@#$ing hate the Aussies!"

Well, I do seem to have struck a rich vein of erudition this evening. He then lost his [ahem] train of thought, as his train was announced to be delayed by 10 minutes. Shouting down the platform, "F@#$ing shit trains! I want to go home! Why are the trains f@#$ing late?" This was repeated every couple of minutes or so. My shoes became very interesting for the next few minutes until my f@#$ing train arrived.

Whilst still on the subject of the Games [yes, yes, ploughing my lonely furrow again. I'm unemployed, okay?], there's a great article here about the opening ceremony in HERE, and a potential alternative that maybe should have been considered. I really do like The Age.

And finally, after all the complex chatter... I think I heard the most damning evidence for those who curse mobile phone technology and advocate a ban on their use in public places. A young girl chatted to a friend and, as I like to do, I eavesdropped:

"Wow, cool. So erm, what flavour doughnut are you eating then? Woooow, cool."

And, just like his previous blog, *poof* He was gone.

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