First published on 14 Jun 2012. Updated on 1 May 2013.
Winter for me brings the comfort of a routine. As I’ve grown up, the ingredients of this routine have altered somewhat. Where hot chocolate was once prominent, dark spirits now command position. The core axis of football, however, is constant.
Tuesday and Thursday training, leading up to a game on Saturday, are the cornerstones of my winters. Sunday recoveries aren’t as routine as they should be – either in their frequency or content – but are usually essential. Throw in my commitment to the Bombers and I can’t describe a winter weekend to a work colleague without peppering the tale with the word ‘footy’.
When I attend games, I embrace the chill with the comfort of my winter coat. I’ve always enjoyed the feeling that comes with having enough layers on to buffet the wind. I also console myself by knowing that the summer sun didn’t want to see my pale skin anyway. Of course my scarf shows my allegiance, but the faded colour and VFL logo (pre-1990) show my level of devotion.
As I’m now over 30, and to be married in November, I’m foreseeing a new routine. Fortunately, since we met at the football, that same axis can propel our future winters, although the ingredients and settings will change. Of course I have to embrace another set of colours (red, gold and blue) and cheer for another city, but their roots are as Victorian as a morning frost.
With the Big Day just four months away, and both the Bombers and my own team performing strongly, there is a temptation to look towards the glamour of spring. For now though, I’m content to stuff my boots with newspaper, place them by the heater, pour myself a short one and watch the replay. Though we should probably revisit the seating plan first….
Andrew Else is a regular contributor to Footy Almanac.