The big men fly in the Grand Final. (Pic: ABC News online/Getty Images)
I thought a lot about which team to support in theGrand Final. Eventually I concluded I must by default go for the Brisbane Lions, because I could not support Collingwood for the following reasons:
- firstly and foremost, they are Collingwood. You either barrack for Collingwood or you don’t.
Steve Bracks’ argument that you should support the local team just doesn’t stack up when it’s Collingwood.
- I have a kind of fondness for the old poorly done by clubs like Fitzroy, even if they have been gobbled up by the Lions. Yes possibly that’s the flimsiest excuse possible, but it’s still a reason. But most significantly:
- The infamous Mr Speakerphone is a big Collingwood supporter. Since he’s gone, I don’t have to put up with him anymore, but he would come in every Friday with a Magpies shirt on (hey if I was writing the corporate dress code, that wouldn’t pass), and proceed to shout into his speakerphone to whoever was listening about how he had seats in the corporate box at the MCG.
Most at the barbecue also had their reasons for not supporting Collingwood. It became apparent by halfway through the second quarter (even to those of us watchingTony &Rae’s fancy big widescreen TV from the optimum viewing position of outside through a window) that the Pies were in deep trouble. This trend continued for most of the rest of the game, until a time in the last quarter when I commented jokingly that they could still win if they kicked a goal every minute. This was their cue to kick three goals in a row, which left most of us laughing our heads off. But it was all downhill for them after that.
By the time the final siren sounded, with Collingwood having received a 50 point drubbing by Brisbane, I was quietly grinning to myself as I imagined Mr Speakerphone sitting in a corporate box at the MCG, the smile finally wiped off his face.