How I became a Geelong supporter

Geelong Football ClubGeelong beat the Bombers by ten points on Saturday night in a rain-soaked MCG. Next comes the Preliminary Finals, and it’s the Brisbane Lions, which isn’t going to be an easy one to win.

I’m not the world’s biggest footy fan, but I do like to keep an eye on Geelong. It’s been a while since they got this close to a Grand Final. I’m ashamed to say I have no club clothing or merchandise (bar a key tag). I might have to invest in a scarf or a jumper or something to show my support.

So how did I become a Geelong supporter? With a dad from Queensland and a mother from England, there’s no great football tradition in my family. No, it was all by chance.

When I was a young’un, a school friend of mine, Mark, was a Kangaroos supporter. One day I said to my mum that I’d like to get a football jumper. So we went into Myers in the city and looked. Lacking any other affiliation, I decided I’d align myself with Mark’s team and get a Kangaroos jumper.

The shop was out of Kangaroos jumpers. What teams did they have that I could adopt? Looking around, I thought about a school holiday day trip to Geelong I’d taken, and noted the colours were similar (okay so they’re horizontal instead of vertical, and it’s navy blue instead of royal blue, but this is little kid logic we’re talking about). So I said Geelong.

Presto, one Geelong supporter. And as is specified deep down somewhere in the AFL’s bylaws, as well as in Melburnian race memory, once one has a team, it cannot be changed for any reason whatsoever. It’s part of your identity, part of who you are. So I’m still a Geelong supporter.

My sister (for reasons I don’t recall) became a South Melbourne Swans supporter. Over the following few years my dad would take my sister and I to games, some at grounds no longer used… a cold and windy VFL Park… down to Moorabbin to play St Kilda… Arden Street to play the Roos… Western Oval to play Footscray. One time he even got us grand final tickets, and we went along to the MCG, only to find they were in the (now gone) standing section, and we were rather too short to see anything. We decided to go home and watch it on telly, but at least I could say I’d been in the ‘G on Grand Final day.

It’s been several years since I last went to the footy. It’s probably time I started taking the kids, who have somehow picked up a mix of Tigers, Bombers and Cats affiliations — maybe now is the time to get THAT sorted out!

I won’t be going, but I will try to keep tabs on the Cats next Saturday night. Here’s hoping for victory over the Lions. GO CATS!

How did your team get your support?

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12 Replies to “How I became a Geelong supporter”

  1. i can’t really say that it is a longlife addiction as i only started truly following the footy while incarcerated with my parents – but i really started feeling sorry for the tigers after the danny frawley spitting incident. i tend to go for the underdog. so, only natural to go for the eventual wooden spooners.
    anybody but brisbane!

  2. I’m a Geelong supporter too and I chose them because they’re the “Cats” and I love cats. Very intellectual of me, but I love them to pieces, and have managed to brainwash the rest of the family too.

  3. 1) I can’t believe that it has been YEARS since you’ve been to the footy and you had the nerve to win ‘Tony’s Tipping Competition’, and 2) I’m a Dees supporter from a family of Bombers fans. Why? Because I wanted to rebel and go for a different team, and Melbourne is only one colour variation away from Essendon. Also, at the time (Grade 6) a couple of my new step-cousins were Melbourne supporters, so I imagine that another element of my decision to change was based on having something else in common with them … Then, in true teenage girl fashion, I realised that there were (and still are, I might add) some attractive players in the Melbourne squad.

  4. Yeah, I was presently surprised to read about you following Geelong. My reason for following them is that most of my family originate from that area. I have aunts, uncles and cousins galore there still. I just grew up loving them and one of the highlights of my life was going to the ’89 grandfinal (even though we lost) and being there to witness Ablett kick nine goals in a very spirited match and come away with the Norm Smith medal. I, like you, don’t go much anymore but my sister and I have an annual night at the football (Collingwood v Geelong) which we thoroughly enjoy. I hope for my mum’s sake that they win the grandfinal but even if they don’t then they’ve still done well by us.

    GO CATS!

  5. Fremantle. I lived in Perth for six years, but West Coast Eagles is a really dumb name. So when the Dockers turned up with the league’s most interesting colour scheme (including purple, my favourite colour, hence my purple bike), I was sold.

    All I own is a Fremantle stubby holder. It sits proud but empty on my kitchen bench.

  6. I used to secretly love Melbourne because of “Toddles”, Todd Viney. Yummy. Anyway… I’m still stinging that we lost to Geelong, however I am prepared to swallow my pride and go for them in the next game. Brisbane needs to go doooooown. They MUST NOT win another year. We’ll never hear the end of it.

  7. Growing up in Tasmania – many good Tassie players ended up playing for St Kilda – so I have a soft spot for the Saints. But!!!! Now that I live over west I have become a adopted West Coast supporter. Gotta disagree with you Fraser on that score.

    Saw a funny bumper sticker the other day…
    “In Perth I support two teams…
    THE WEST COAST EAGLE,
    and any other team playing
    THE DOCKERS!”

    PS The Western Derby speaks for itself

  8. This isn’t a joke. Hop down to Savers Footscray straight away. There’s a Geelong F.C. doona cover there. Double bed. $6.99. Excellent condition. (Or take your chances: after Saturday it could be marked down – or up.)

  9. Considering our record, supporting the team that’s playing the Dockers is probably an overall win.

    Ah, well, next year definitely.

  10. Born and Bred in Sydney it would be wrong to not follow the Swans!! Cheer Cheer the Red and the White!

    As for the “other” game in Sydney, I was born in the Bankstown district, so I have yet to shake off following the Bulldogs, even though gang rape allegations (of which I know the terrible details – it did happen and it wasn’t good!) and supporters who give them a bad name make it hard at times.

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