By the Holy Boot
So how is everyone travelling? I’d imagine that by now Geelong supporters are searching for ways to stretch out their premiership celebrations, while Collingwood fans would have overly indulged in viewings of the 2010 grand final (part 2 of course). Hawthorn fans will undoubtedly be dreaming of an injury-free tilt at a flag, while the Blues will be searching for the perfect marketing slogan to try and live up to in season 2012.
Then there’s the swag of new coaches acquainting themselves with their new surroundings, while up Rooty Hill way, a new team of Giants are planning their first baby-steps into the AFL. Yes, it’s just around the corner.
But how to survive these weeks, these months, which are void of the leathern sphere? The cricket’s good to have on the box, while numerous others sports and codes battle it out for the summer sporting market. But it doesn’t scratch this footy fans itch.
What are the options?
In a post-season Recovery Session podcast, nickmaxwell.com’s very own Iron Sock suggested that he would prefer to be cryogenically frozen post grand final and thawed out come round 1 of the following season. However, until this technology is available to the common man, or even the uncommon man, we must amuse ourselves in the summer months. Here are some suggestions.
1. If you’re like me, you would possess a great number of club games on video from many a year ago which you are slowly but surely digitising. Watch a favourite game. These can often be obscure matches, like Richmond’s 1993 Fosters Cup last gasp win over Fitzroy, when Todd Menangola propelled us towards that years night grand final. Of course, re-watching your favourite games from the season just past is also a great way to instil hope for the upcoming campaign.
2. You can use the off-season to delve into some footy history books, be it club histories, the evolution of the game or what have you. I’ve just finished reading a fantastic biography on one of the games key founders, Thomas Wills, written by Greg De Moore. Well recommended. Alternatively, I’ve also been perusing Roland Rocchiccioli’s AFL Cookbook from 1998.
3. I haven’t gotten around to this yet, but for the overly keen you can start organising you 2012 Dreamteam squads. You know, the bloke that scores 2,500 week in, week out, rendering your once in a blue moon score of 2,200 rather useless!
4. Diary? Check. Footy Fixture? Check.Cross-reference the two. Do this as early as possible. Don’t let the winter months clog up before you’ve had a chance to pre-fill your match day dates. Clubs could surely sell club-themed diaries with the matches already written in!
5. Start a blog about footy! There’s no time like the off-season to keep the passion burning through typed word and uploaded photograph of all things football! It’s certainly helped me cope.
6. Find a local oval where the goalposts haven’t been removed for cricket. Bring along a Sherrin and someone to kick the footy with. If you happen to be playing cricket this summer and the goalposts are still standing tall, perhaps you could aim to hit a six through the two uprights. This should surely be awarded as 12 runs!
7. Wait. Just be patient. Spend time with the family. Mow the grass. Fix that thingy that needs fixing. See those people that need visiting. Enjoy the down time before this fixation engulfs us once again! Ok, so clearly that just won’t do, but it may be your only option!
Anyway, that’s me done for the time being. A happy new year to all, and may the upcoming footy season bring you, if not success, at least a fulfilment of some description! And remember, there’s only 60 days to go… not that I’m counting!
- The Holy Boot
These thoughts and opinions are those of the author and are not necessarily aligned with those of Nick Maxwell or the people at nickmaxwell.com.au
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