Monday, 8 October 2007


Is there anything wrong with mourning your team's loss? Hell, no!

We're going to hear all sorts of bullshit about "the national psyche" over the next few days, weeks, and (oh gawd) probably years.

And it will be bullshit, all of it.

Most people around most parts of the world support a team or two, but when those teams lose they don't start bleating about "the village psyche," "the city psyche," or "the province psyche." They mourn the team's loss without all that bullshit, and then they get on with getting up for next time.

For forty-four years including five finals appearance, the Victorian town of Geelong mourned its team's failure to bring home a premiership flag, but no-one talked about "the Geelong psyche being wounded" or called it "an extreme reaction." It just made victory this year all the sweeter for Geelong fans everywhere.

All Black fans are everywhere too, and if most New Zealanders have a team, then that team is the All Blacks. It means our mourning after our teams' loss has an unusual intensity because everyone's blubbing right across these two small islands, and there are too few other supporters around to take the piss out of us for losing, but when your team heads home after being kicked out at the quarter finals, the only thing to do is mourn.

Losing like that is a bastard. It makes you realise how much better it is to win.

That said, every cloud has a sliver lining. If The Samaritans were to invest in an 0900 number, it could be a useful opportunity to buy some shares.

UPDATE: Lance suggests we take Chopper's advice: "Harden the fuck up." Hilariously cathartic!


  1. Robert Winefield8 Oct 2007, 08:42:00

    Jesus wept. Global warming won't raise the sea levels as fast as f***ing ringing wet press releases from psychologists!

    Ever since the AB's went full time chasing World Cups, I can count on the fingers of one hand the number of times I've seen them in the flesh. I've never been able to afford to pay Test match prices and since Henry took over I can't even see them in their provincial uniform anymore. These guys are as mercurial and hard to find as Hollywood celebs and just as irrelevant.

    Mourn the loss if you like, I mourn the fact that I've met Colin Meads in person more often than I've *seen* the bloke who currently wears his number.

    If the players want to get fired up they don't need to be schooled by $500/hr sports shrinks. They just need to spend some time meeting and playing in front of the die-hard fans. That's what's been left behind in the transition from the amateur to professonal era.

    That and the self reliance that was always a hallmark of NZers who dealt with the lack of funds and resources by using their brains & brawn.

    By all means pay the players well. Just don't baby them and don't wrap them up in so much cotton wool that the fans can't see them.

  2. Ta for the Chopper link. A thoroughly good belly laugh was much appreciated.

    Talking about psychology: one aspect of this hooha is the quick about-turn of the local sports journos ... the Andrew Savilles et al who were collectively pissing in AB pockets right up until kick-off and are now distancing themselves as quick as you can say Graham Henry.

    Nobody, repeat nobody, fetes the Blacks like the sports journos, and spends so much time on bullshit such as the jersey-thing & any minute change to the haka.

    Face it. None of them, in spite of the rhetoric, really concentrated on each individual game. Like the opening games, the quarter & semi were paid advance lip service. They were all, to a man, focusing on the big one that got away.

    Having said that, none of the above excuses the team's second-half performance.

  3. In other news, Anton Oliver grabs his cock, starts pulling and crushes what's left of his brain...

    Anton Oliver reckoned the All Blacks dressing room had the same stench of death as a World War 1 battle field.

    The veteran hooker has developed a passion for New Zealand's war history and had read World War I books The Massacre at Passchendaele and All Quiet on the Western Front during the past few weeks in France.

    The images from those two books were an apt description for how the All Blacks had felt as they sat, devastated, in their dressing room deep in the bowels of the Millennium Stadium in the wake of their historic 20-18 World Cup quarter final loss to France yesterday, Oliver said.

    "The feeling in the shed is like no-man's land as it's described in those two books. There's a sort of desolate decay and the smell of death," said Oliver.

    "That's what it feels like us. It feels like no-man's land and it's not a nice place to be."

    Jesus wept... I think, Ant, you'll find that smell is bullshit and rotting brain cells.


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