This is now an edited version of the original blog… you can read the full one by downloading my Football Neutral 2013/14 season review on Kindle. Well over 300 pages of daftness. Less than £2! Thanks!
…I set off for the game from North Wales fairly late on, forgetting that the A5 between Oswestry and Shrewsbury has more roundabouts than some kind of playground supplies warehouse. Parking was easy though, as I massively cheated. Kev let me park on his drive and it was a short 15 minute walk to the ground. It seems that everyone else going to the game thought the same thing, as Kev noticed hordes of Coventry fans wandering by his window during the afternoon.
Kev started in comedy at roughly the same time as me eight years ago and also used to run a fantastic gig at the Old Post Office in Shrewsbury (which is still going under new management). It’s a shame for the comedy world that he packed it in (due to clashes with his other career, I believe) because I used to look forward to working with him no end. Brilliant joke writer, lovely chap and knows his football. He isn’t a Shrews fan though, despite the season ticket. He’s a staunch West Ham supporter, but buys a season ticket for him and his 7 year old son Jonathan every year almost – as he put it – “as a community donation” as they can’t get to every match because Jonathan is both an aspiring footballer and cricketer.
I do material onstage discussing how much I love my daughter but I generally pretty much hate all other children. This isn’t just a joke, I really hate them. I can honestly say that Jonathan is now on the list of cool kids that I can happily hang out with. On the walk to the ground he listened eagerly to me and his Dad chatting away, he asked about my tattoos and at one point offered me sweets in a brilliantly suspicious way, like a diminutive dealer of jellies. Not the ones they like in Glasgow.
He was in fact trying to alert me to the Shrewsbury mascot, who throws sweets out at the fans. I presumed the mascot would be a giant shrew, but it turns out it’s a lion. A bloody LION.
My first ever sticker album was Football 86. Shrewsbury were in the second tier back then, and you got a sticker of their whole team posing along with half a shiny for their badge. Their badge – this being the eighties – was a wonderful line drawing of a Shrew. I can still see it now, what an amazing badge! There needs to be more line drawing badges like that and Leicester’s awful walking fox one from the same era.
But a lion? Kev explained the evolution of the badge to me as moving from a Shrew – IT’S IN THE BLOODY NAME OF THE TOWN – to what he called a “generic clip art lion”. I could not be more disappointed. Why must clubs shun the tiny woodland mammals in favour of the big cats of the Serengeti?…
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