Thursday, June 25, 2015

Aussie Rules!!! Go the Saints!!

While in Meandarra, thanks to my mate1, I rekindled an interest in Aussie Rules2. I'd last watch the 2010 St Kilda vs Collingwood Grand Final when I was in Stonehenge, that ended in a draw. I missed the next game where Collingwood won.  He was trying to get me excited about the upcoming State of Origin game between Queensland and New South Wales. He had Buckley's3 of that. I've never been interested in the rugby.  Even without knowing the rules, there was something about the players; their lack of necks, the 'sniff each others armpits' gatherings, running forward but throwing the ball backwards! And they always throw themselves at the ground. What is with that?  The players can't think at all; get ball, run straight forward to smack into another player, all fall down. Get up, and repeat. Like blowies4 at the window, thump, thump, thump, over and over again. The line from The Man from Ironbark always comes to mind: "Their eyes were dull, their heads were flat, they had no brains at all;"

My mate explained, there is Rugby League and Rugby Union. And when looking into the history, it all becomes clear.  Rugby Union started about 1845 at Ruby School, the oldest, most expensive boys school in England.  Soccer, also called football, was the game played before that. A game where only the goalkeeper can touch the ball with their hands. What happened was, one of the rich boys, not able to kick the ball, picked it up and ran. Maybe he'd also heard about the new game played out in Australia, but didn't know the rules. He couldn't kick a ball to save himself. Not being too bright, he ran straight into another player, and they all fell over.  His father, who gave big bikkies5 to the school, said his son was right, that was the way to play football. The school, not wanting to get in a blue6 with the father, and risk losing all the moolah7 he gave to the school,  gave into to him and agreed.  After that, everyone was told to play the new game. Thats what happened,  Fair dinkum8!

Rugby League formed in 1895 when some clubs split from the rest over an argument about players pay.

Where as, Aussie Rules had its beginnings in the early 1820's in Melbourne. With Melbourne Football club being the oldest in the world that is now professional.

So would you rather support an English game, created by rich school boys that can't kick a football, or a true blue9 Aussie game? No question there; Aussie Rules!!!

As for the State of Origin games; Aussie Rules had been playing interstate competitions were played from 1879.   Rugby games were played from 1908, but wasn't really known about till a couple of journalists, wanting to sell more papers, got the rules changed in 1980. It worked, so that is how it stayed.

For all the advertising for the State of Origin, Aussie Rules has higher average attendances, and highest Grand final attendances.

Anyway, what could I do; he's a mate, so I went to the pub to watch the first game of 2015 series. In the lead up to the game starting, watching one of the Queensland players beating his chest; it reminded me of a nature documentary I'd seen on gorillas.  Needless to say, the game was shit house10. Finally, Queensland, who hit their heads slightly less than the New South Wales side, fumbled the ball, accidentally kicked a field goal and went on to win by the one point. Amazing. Kicking is not something rugby players can do.

So the better game; Aussie Rules. Watch the big men fly11.  They can run, kick, jump, and have necks.

My team: St Kilda.  Go the Saints!

Recently I was able to watch St Kilda Vs Melbourne (STK Saints V Melb Demons) Round 11. A great game! Here's the last 2 minutes:

I'm currently on the family farm up outside of  Cairns. Yeah, way behind on blog entries. I'll catch up slowly.

Australian Slang

1 mate: a friend
2 Aussie rules: Australian Rules Football
3 Buckley's : no chance
4 blowie : blow fly
5 big bikkies : a lot of money
6 blue : a fight
7 moolah : money
8 fair dinkum : true, the truth
9 true blue : patriotic
10 shit house : of poor quality, unenjoyable
11 big men fly = A reference to Australian Rules Football, where players leap into the air to catch the ball (“take a mark”).