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TasJohnsonFanClub

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About TasJohnsonFanClub

  • Birthday June 14

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    Anyone in a red and blue jumper

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    Male
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    Brexit Island
  • Interests
    Measuring the footy training value of Italian road bikes

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  1. Fantastic read. Heading out on my daily walks these past couple of weeks, I’ve found myself thinking about the approaching event and wondering what it is that makes us love footy, and why people everywhere love team sports. Your post hits on so many of the thoughts that I have had. It is not just about winning premierships - something where 17 of the 18 tribes were disappointed at the end of the year couldn’t sustain itself. It is the moments and memories - the great victories, the great athletes, individual moments of brilliance, artistry and magic and even the sights, sounds and smells of the stadiums and occasions. We Melbourne people smile inwardly at the memory of Robbie Flower running the wings - when rival fans would look forward to a game against us not just for the expected easy win but also because it gave them an excuse to watch Robbie for themselves. We loved Schwarta’s wild flights before the ACLs changed his game. We marvelled at Jimmy’s backstory and his phenomenal endurance. We loved the skills that Ooze seemed to display without effort. And we had the Wiz - he was ours. And magic moments and famous victory came together one soggy afternoon at Godforesaken Park at Waverley as the Wiz scored that unbelievable end-to-end goal on our way to a flogging of the hated Hawthorn. These moments and memories are the foundation of the footy supporter, the bedrock of the game. And all teams and their supporters will have their own caches of such things. Premierships aren’t the only thing in the game. Even the Hawthorn and Richmond supporters who have enjoyed so many flags since our last one will likely include other memories from lesser seasons among their favourite footy memories. But premierships are an important part of our footy life, and the first one after a drought is particularly so. More so, flags can define stages in our lives - as a child, running around the school yard or park in your footy jumper knowing that others are envious of you because your team is the premier club; celebrating as a young teenager when footy is about the most important thing in life; the reckless celebration in your late teens/early 20s, where the end of the celebration is lost in a drunken haze and perhaps newly inked flesh; the joy of young parents reassuring a young daughter or son that yes, our team is winning the flag; discussing the tactical master strokes with workmates and friends over a coffee or beer; filling in grandchildren on how the premiership team of your youth compares to their current champions. Premierships are important - and for most Melbourne supporters, these stage-of-life opportunities have not been part of our footy life journeys. In another post, I entertained a quasi-academic curiosity on whether there was anyone younger than me at the ‘64 Grand Final. I’m still yet to find anyone, so it is possible that I’m the youngest person alive who has witnessed a Demons flag - and I’m quite old now, and desperately want to be replaced by thousands of Melbourne fans younger than me as witnesses. Our path to this opportunity has been long, frequently painful and occasionally sublime. For the first time in 57 years I am truly confident that we have the team to win it all. But I’m also realistic (fatalistic?) enough to know that sport is not always fair and the best team does not always win. Whatever the outcome, I can accept the result - I am a Melbourne supporter, after all. But I believe in this team. I honestly don’t know how I will feel if we win on Saturday. I have no reference point for such a thing. But I’m desperate to see generations of Melbourne supporters young than me to join the ranks of those that have experienced premiership joy/satisfaction/exhilaration/ ecstasy……
  2. A completely team-focussed decision by the ultimate team-first player. I’m sure he was always going to head back to Melbourne when the birth was imminent but by taking the decision now he has removed one of the few issues of uncertainty for the team at the beginning of the GF build-up, and provided the club with another positive motivation for the next two weeks. How effective was the message of “doing it for our Melbourne-based fans who deserved to see their team in finals” in the PF lead-up? The players referred to it in every interview and quote over the last couple of weeks. Emotion can’t come into when it comes to selecting the team for a GF, and this helps the club to focus on putting together the best team to get the job done. No distractions. Nathan Jones understands that and typically lives by it.
  3. As an observer, rather than interested supporter, of most of the Grand Finals of the past 56 years, I tend to look for the elements of what makes this game our passion. And much of this is in the stands - the faces and reactions. I love the awe-struck looks on young faces, the teenagers and young to middle-aged adults going off their heads, and the older supporters just looking satisfied when a long drought comes to an end (anyone else remember the images of a red-eyed Kevin Murray in the stands after the Lions win in 2001?). Not sure what they are feeling - but hope to have my own thoughts at some time not too far away. What really hits me is the range of looks and backgrounds - footy club supporters don’t all fit into one box per club (well - perhaps Collingwood…). And the stories in this thread highlight this so well.
  4. I’ve never been certain whether those images of Ray Gabelich are my own or those that I inherited from seeing them so often in old black and white (no pun intended) film. I have clearer memories of the Second Semi demolition of Collingwood two weeks earlier - and of running around on the ground in the September sunshine after that game. I wandered all over that ground and through the stands by myself while my father headed to the bar to dissect the game (probably be seen as bad parenting now). I know that as a six year old I thought this was how the world was. Go to the footy, see Melbourne win and at the end of the season win the premiership. Decades of watching others celebrate drained that from me. Now any big win is special.
  5. One of the joys of this happy time is reading posts here and elsewhere from older lifelong Melbourne supporters who feared they would not see us rise to the top again and the joy they felt when Max slotted THAT goal. Many seemed to have been made young again by that moment. I’m one of those old enough (just) to have witnessed a Melbourne Premiership. One thing that has long played on my mind is whether I might be among the youngest people to have enjoyed that privilege - a stark and bittersweet realisation now that I am in my 60s and the drought is deep in its 57th year. Without giving my exact age away (well, actually I am), I was exactly 6 years, 3 months and 5 days old on that great day in September 1964 - sitting in the old Grey Smith Stand with my father and my older brother. A benefit of my father’s MCC membership and being the third generation of Melbourne supporters. Sadly, my sisters and two subsequent generations are yet to experience the joy. So my question, fellow Demonlanders, is this. Is there anyone out there who was at the 1964 Grand Final and is younger than me?
  6. Leadership is a big factor. One of the most significant moments in the season came when Stephen May went down against Geelong. The way that Jake Lever took control and marshalled the defence - and the way that the back group responded - was fabulous to see. Our defensive cohesion was maintained without a blip. Also interested to see the coaches spending so much time working from the boundary rather than staying in the box. Much has already been said about the influence of Mark Williams. Watching Simon Goodwin having a quiet word with Kozzie after the little imbroglio near the end of the Richmond game was good coaching.
  7. I can't tell you how envious I am of people who were able to be at the game today. You should be proud and honoured to have been there.
  8. So many reasons to love being a Melbourne person this week
  9. I just want to see my team sitting around the rooms at the end of the game looking totally trashed from having given everything for the cause. .... and preferably sharing that warm smile of victory
  10. Fired my $50 in through the website. Hope we manage to crack $4000 by the end of it.
  11. This effort has prompted me to change from a frequent visitor to a new registration. Sometimes we are reminded that footy is about a lot more than just what happens on the field. I'm still glowing from having picked up #45 in the auction - but I'm more than happy to also make a contribution to this fund. Damn good work, Fork and all who are contributing.
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