Yaaawwwwwwwnnnnnnnnn! Come back the NFL, all is forgiven. Come back the bloody FBD, likewise. Jesus, Mary and Joseph, the way things are going, I’ll end up having to watch those overpaid nancy boys out in Austria or Switzerland or wherever the hell it is (Austerland? Switria?) or maybe, just maybe, I might have to start on that Sopranos box set that I was leaving till the long nights start to draw in once more.
Two weeks to go. I read somewhere the other day that we’re the very last county that’ll take the field in this year’s Championship. At this rate of going, it’s not potential injuries to players that should worry us, it’s the onset of old age. Galway play again this coming weekend and so, in a provincial campaign involving just seven participants, the Herrin Chokers will, by some fantastically demented piece of scheduling, have managed to get two Connacht championship outings under their belts before our lads even get to lace their boots. Why not play the fucking final while you’re at it before we get a run out?
I know my fellow Mayoman An Spailpin was getting all dewy-eyed recently about how great the Championship is and how redrawing it along fairer lines (oh, by the way, my notion of fairness simply involves having everyone starting at the same position and having to jump the same number of hurdles, at roughly the same point in time, to win the thing; how this happens doesn’t matter but a system loaded in the favour of the county which happens to need no such leg-up seems, to me at least, to be an unnecessary and intolerable perversion) would strip it of its magic. If this kind of waiting around for weeks on end constitutes magic, then I’m a Dutchman (come on RVP!). I do, however, share the Spailpin’s wonder as to how the Championship has managed to survive the test of time, though I’m not sure we’d agree on why it has. One thing’s for sure, though: the current bastardised format won’t last as long as the original did and another thing’s fairly sure as well – there’s no going back to the so-called Good Old Days. Onward and upwards it is, then, though whatever this leads to is anyone’s guess.
Now, where was I? Well, while we kick our heels on the platform, waiting for the 22nd June 3.30 pm express to show up, others get to experience their first taste of the summer’s Championship action. Down almost caused the second big upset of the summer, with Dan Gordon putting in a Man of the Match performance for Down as they held Tyrone to a 2-8 each draw in Omagh. This could be the start of Down’s re-emergence (and, as the only county capable of making Kerrymen poo in their shorts when they see those jerseys on All-Ireland day, this could be good news) or else it could be a useful extra game to get the Tyrone machine humming again. On balance, it’s probably the latter but the replay will certainly be interesting.
I was half-thinking of going to Croker today and, indeed, the Dubettes and I had firmish plans to do so until we got an invite to a kid’s show at the National Concert Hall which clashed with the match this afternoon. While the girls do like to don their Dubs’ geansais, they like their dressing-up attire even more so the Concert Hall it was, where the entertainment included a jester in a multi-coloured get-up, whose dance routine on YMCA suggested strongly it wasn’t his first time doing that particular turn …
But, as the late Terry Keane was wont to say, I digress. It sounds like we didn’t miss all that much in terms of action from Croker – the Dubs seemed to sonambulate their way through a fairly dire first half but they perked up a fair bit in the second half. 1-22 is a decent score to run up, regardless of the opposition but, for once, I’d concur with Big Tom’s analysis of the problems facing the Jacks: Meath’s departure from Leinster could well be the turning point for Dublin’s summer, sending them, once again, into the All-Ireland series unprepared and unready for the fight. Well, maybe not for this kind of fighting but I guess you know what me and my mate Tom mean.
That’s it – The Sunday Game has just started so the couch is the only place to be. Hang on, where are my sunglasses? The combination of those sofas and Davy Fitz’s shirt is too much on my eyes, even after that lad at the NCH today.