Saturday, September 18, 2010


Saturday 18 September 2010

Dream: I appear to be crawling into a relationship with a person I see most days and it is a very comforting thing.

It’s a glorious day as I awaken with another slight din of a headache on a Saturday morning.

Early on I decide I am going to the football today.  Football is better when the sun is out and it would be a crime not to go on a day like this.  Millwall are playing Watford who are floundering which should hopefully mean ‘Wall win and get to break my losing streak at The Den.

With view to ensuring victory repeating the good luck gesture of the play offs I put on a new pair of socks.  This sensation feels like victory.

Omens are good as I snag almost the best parking space in the station car park which comes complimented with a perfect piece of parking.

I get the 12.29PM fast train that should see me get to the ground in good time.

On the train I find myself sat next to a gaggle of drunk women.  As they continue to act and look like pigs I proceed to scratch my head and consider whether I would or not.

Once arrived at Stratford I exit into the new extended station with all its additional platforms and where they have now thankfully removed the barriers that lead to the Jubilee Line.

Like a fool I forgot to check beforehand if the Jubilee Line was playing up this weekend but fortunately that is just between West Hampstead and Stanmore.  There is no fun there.

By this point things are still moving staggeringly well as the tube soon pulls off in the right direction and despite not getting a seat the people around me are not annoying.  Indeed I find myself really impressed (and attracted) by a large Asian lady reading Lolita.

At Canning Town a large crazy lady that looks like a man in drag using/wearing a heavy metal wig runs for the train doors after standing outside them since the train arrived into the station.  Needless to say she gets her bag caught in the closing doors as they do their best to crush her nasty girth.  A brief panic ensues as she attempts to pull her bag from the doors, frantically tugging and pressing the button.  Eventually the safety switch triggers and she gets her bag but really she does not deserve it.  Thankfully she exits at Canary Wharf (the next station).

Soon the tube gets to Canada Water where I exit and hop aboard the East London line down to Surrey Quays for the first time in years.

Once released onto proceedings from public transport I walk to The Den via the Football Factory route which remains as ever.  On the way I spot a couple of flats with Christmas decorations/lights still up.

Before long I find myself at The Den at which time it is still pretty early.  Once inside the ground I have a couple of cold drinks before eventually taking my seat.  Somewhat painfully a few minutes later Captain Birdseye decides to sit next to me (and half on me).  Crowding the plate he sits with his pie which twenty minutes later at the time of kick off he is still eating.  How the fuck did the guy get so fat when he eats to fucking slow?

Watford win the coin toss and choose to change ends which is a gesture that comes with an element of intimidation and knowing on their part.  When teams do this it is never a good sign.  In keeping with this Watford score early in the seventh minute on as David Forde fucks up a cross from a corner and Eustace (whoever he is) stabs home at the far post.

Less than ten minutes later Watford add another early second as they score in the fourteenth minute from something of a penalty box scramble with Mutch stabbing the ball home.  At this point the air turns very hostile as ‘Wall fans feel fucked off with disbelief at the pathetic performance developing in front of us.  I have to concede I haven’t felt this intimidated here in ages.  Perhaps it is because I really it is all my fault, I just bring bad luck to this club,

At least with the angry atmosphere things begin to calm down and Millwall bed in, managing to actually go five minutes without conceding a goal.  It is at this point I begin to question just how sensible it is to have a referee and linesmen wearing a blue jersey at a time when a team are playing in blue shirts also.  Its in the technicalities.

With the atmosphere failing to improve as Millwall fail to get back into the game around the 41st minute mark a shirtless fan with crap tattoos comes running onto the pitch and heads towards Doyley.  As Neil Harris steps in between them (ahead of the referee, stewards or any police) immediately the Millwall crowd angrily gets on the guy’s case which goes completely against the reputation and perception of our club.

That said the guy to my left puts things into perspective when he says “he was a lot quicker than Henry or Schofield”.  True that.

From here a shitty atmosphere turns even shittier as minutes later Watford the chancers scramble in a third just before the halftime break from Sordell.  For a third time the goal is an agonising one as it just appears to trickle in the net in slow motion.

As I go for a piss at halftime people are already leaving.  When I step into the toilets it is very smoky.  Supporting Millwall is stressful stuff.

In the second half an inevitable fourth goes in off a header from a corner.  Yet again the goal is not overly spectacular or even well crafted and the sight of the scorer Mariappa running the entire length of the pitch to jump into the arms of the Watford goalkeeper really is just sickening and inciting.

Not long afterwards Liam Trotter pulls one back in the 56th minute and for a while a great comeback is almost a consideration but ultimately who the fuck are we kidding.

Eventually an unsurprising fifth flies in due to a slip up by Ward allowing Graham the space to slot home a well taken finish which really shouldn’t have occurred in the first place.  Then finally number six goes in during injury time via another shitty header from another shitty corner as Taylor scores to complete the 6-1 embarrassment.

It is with this that the referee blows his whistle and puts the match out of its misery.  As the Watford supporters mug it in contrast the Millwall supporters on the whole have now long passed anger and dropped into depression.  Our everyday lives are shit enough and now we have to deal with this too?

From here I slope back to Surrey Quays in the hope that somewhere some ‘Wall fans pull their fingers out.  Pretty swiftly I change at Canada Water and before long I am head backing to Stratford on the Jubilee Line where I eventually board the 5.38PM back to Essex.

When I get back to Colchester the time is just after 6.30PM and all thoughts are towards what is for dinner tonight at home.  I do not think I have ever felt so depressed off the back of football.  In many ways this was even worse than the play off loss against Scunthorpe last year.

Back home I settle into Saturday night watching episodes of Mad Men and trying to salvage the weekend from a writing perspective.

At various intervals I check the Millwall forum to find out just what happened today.  Conspiracy theories flow about Kenny Jackett soon exiting to take over Wales and Steve Morison leaving for Blackburn but really nobody knows anything.

Why these days do I feel the need to take stock at the close of proceedings, to think of who or what has upset me today, to look for a reason to be miserable and/or angry with view to justifying my annoyance.

Eventually I head to bed too early for a Saturday night.  There I watch The Special Relationship which turns out to be nonsense that soon sends me to sleep.

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