My name is Kerry, I was born on May 15th 1983 in Fremantle, Western Australia. When I was 12 years old a Football team called the Fremantle Dockers came into existence and from that day forth they were the team that I followed. Yes, that's right, I support the Fremantle Dockers. Yes I know that for 20 years they have done a whole heap of not much and Yes I most certainly realise that they lost the Grand Final (and the subsequent Grand Final rematch) and yes any other insult that you have to make I've probably heard before. But for Hook or Crook, they are my team. I enjoy the atmosphere and the suspense and the mateships that you can form with people you have never met simply by the colours that you choose to wear to a game. To me that's what its all about, but over the last couple of weeks I have come to realise that I may be one of the select few that believe this is what Football (or Sport) is all about. It appears that Sport is really about unsportsman ship and turning people into arseholes... let me explain why
I was walking around my neighbourhood the other day (I live in Hipsterville where everyone has beards and rides fixies and wears over sized ugly woollen knitted jumpers) and in the space of 10 minutes I got heckled three times!!! 3 times because I had chosen to walk that day wearing my Freo Jumper. It was outside of the football season but it appeared that people were getting started early on their hateorade. I was thinking that maybe sport turned people into arseholes but maybe they always are and being around them at sporting events just highlights this.
What kind of example are we setting for our children? I was pondering this question the other day via social media and was informed that this kind of passion is bred into people, passionate parents breed passionate children. At the end of last season I went to the Port and Geelong Prelim final and there were some kids sitting in front of us (about 8 or 10 years old) that were YELLING abuse at the adults around them, vicious remarks and when I looked to try and find their parents I found their parents to be doing the same thing. I thought it was a parents duty to teach children right from wrong, respect for their elders and all those other things that make kids turn into decent humans. If this is the case why should there be an exception to the rule. Abusing someone because your team is losing is to me the equivalent to throwing a tantrum because someone took your toy.
When I was about 15 I used to coach Under 8s Tee-Ball, team sports are important for teaching kids team work and sharing and taking turns, keeping them active and getting them having fun. We teach the kids it doesn't matter whether you win or lose but its how you play the game. The kids mostly remember this but there are some parents that seem to forget this lesson. There was a game when a parent yelled about an inch from my face because I didn't put his star little player on to win all of the things and I distinctly remember crying about it. Now days I would just stand my ground and look at the man is disdain. Just because you want to win doesn't mean you can change the rules and cut the line, I wonder what happened to that kid and how he ended up turning out? a few weeks ago I had a small small child yell at me that Freo Sucks, it just happened to be at the Game where we ended up beating his team by 70 odd points. Yeah mate, my team sucks but we are still beating your team. When I was his age I was too scared to even talk to an adult, and they say that video games are making kids lose their social skills? If this is the reaction that a 6 year old has can you imagine what he will be like as an adult. Maybe riots will come to AFL just like they do in the Soccer.
I also think that Football Supporters are Like Elephants, they never forget. As I mentioned above, yes I know that we lost the Grand Final last year, that we have no premiership flags and all of those other things. Every person that I meet likes to remind me of that fact. I know these things, I watched the same thing as you did. What do you gain by bringing it up over and over again? nothing I would hazard a guess to say. I am going to come out and say it, we didn't deserve to win the Grand Final last year, we played sloppily, for what ever reason we just weren't good enough on the day. And that's really the nature of the game, someone always has to lose BUT we got there fair and square and really no one can take that away from us. So please continue to go on about how we lost, but unless you are a Hawthorn supporter you really are just white noise because we got there and your team didn't.
As a Supporter you are the face of your club - If I was to say Collingwood supporters to you, I am sure you would all pull an image up in your head of a toothless drunken lout and you would probably be right in thinking that because most of the supporters I have seen do in fact look like that. As with everything how you behave reflects on what people think of you. Sure have passion by all means, but is abusing someone because they go for a different team than yours really going to make you a better person? I don't hate any teams, I just dislike their supporters. Yelling stupid remarks and calling people names doesn't make your team play better, it just makes everyone around you think you are an idiot. I am the kind of supporter that claps when the other team scores, gives them props when they win and just goes to have a good time. Sure I hope my team wins but if they don't its not really the end of the world.
Maybe sport is just like the Hunger Games. Kill Everyone that would stand against you so you can be the number 1 victor. Maybe I really have no place in commenting on this because I cant think of anything that would make me passionate enough to turn me nasty and spiteful. I am not competitive or motivated by one upping someone else, or maybe its because I have never actually been good enough at something to think that I could win so I just don't understand what it is like. So maybe I should just stick to competitive lawn bowls, at least at the end of it everyone has some scones and a nap and just hopes that they wake up again. That sounds more like my cup of tea.
Love and Lawn Bowls