Survival Instinct

I think it is generally accepted that for a species to survive, it needs to apply lessons learned. So choosing to eschew (BOOM!) a leaf from the dinosaurs’ book on ‘how to become extinct’, TLF took her Gene Kellyesque experience of the previous weekend and set out for football, properly kitted out. Waterproof walking boots, serious coat, hat. You get the drift.

Turns out that the other thing that survival might entail is a bit of luck or maybe a sense of timing and TLF was all out of that on Saturday:
13:15 Leave house
13:21 Heavens open and remain open for entire 25 min walk to Clarence Park.

By now we once again have a drowned TLF, and the joy of walking in the rain is that your trousers get soaked front and back – NICE. I did shout at the wind and the rain quite a lot in a Basil Fawlty-styley and got some slightly odd looks from passers-by. Weirdos. Everyone shouts at the weather don’t they?

On the upside when I did get to the ground I did manage to shelter from the hail that replaced the rain as John, kindly let me lurk in the ticket booth (let’s face it, business wasn’t exactly brisk as the hail whacked down). Mind you that shelter presented me with a new survival challenge, as John had a bone to pick with me (always scares me that phrase) which related to the appropriateness or otherwise of me cleaning my fridge when I only moved in “five minutes ago.” I did adapt a defensive approach, but on reflection, do you know I have never cleaned a fridge before….and what is unique about this fridge? Yeah…the first one I have shared with Mr TLF. I’ll say no more.

There was also a small dispute over the use of the word ‘cob’ as opposed to ‘roll’. I guess the survivor does tend to adapt to their surroundings but I’ll be honest, this one is a challenge…it’s asking me to go against my Midlands nature. Easiest way to avoid this debate was to hunt down some Stella and so to the bar, where in the interests of avoiding hypothermia, I attached myself to the large radiator in an attempt to dry out and hooked up to an IV drip of Stella to block out just how soggy and cold I really was. My new survival gear did not go unnoticed as Lee suggested that I did now look like a female Bear Grylls. I did check out Mr BG’s website and if I am going to carry off this ‘look’ then I need to get me some survival products to sell and also set up a ‘Survival Academy.’

On the product side I am thinking waterproof and crush proof cases for bacon fries, and some kind of Stella container that stops the rain diluting your beverage when out on the terraces. The BG Academy offers 24 adult intensive courses and 5 day extreme adult courses, both of which seem to involve a lot of mud, cold weather, climbing, walking miles with all your kit on your back, hunting and gathering and generally having your character built. TLF Survival Academy will involve intensive foraging for suitable snacks, identification of inventive bacon COB fillings and extreme lager consumption, with post consumption tests to see how much of the football you watched you can actually remember. You can buy vouchers for people to go on these courses. The BG ones, not mine. My courses are just made up things in my little lost head (in case you hadn’t spotted that). Presumably these vouchers are gifts for people you don’t like. Maybe we could send one to Monday’s ref? But wait I am getting ahead of myself, let’s finish off the weekend.

I confess the Satday game itself is a bit blurry, but I had definitely dried out by final whistle, knew more about red velvet cake than I did at 3pm and had established that marzipan will never appear on a menu that our programme editor, and chief-leader-astray of TLF is responsible for. Weaved my way home on the back of 4 pints and a 3-0 win to discover a VERY grumpy (and with good reason) Mr TLF. So kept silent, adopted my empathetic face and nodded sympathetically – survival mode or what?

The only person who needed to worry about survival at the Monday game was the ref, who astounded us all with his decisions that left us with 9 men for 60 minutes. Rather than rolling over against play off rivals as a result of this major setback, the team upped their game. As did the fans; pacing the terraces, upping the singing, biting collective nails (eh?), abusing the ref and proving a strong knowledge of current affairs with the chant “you’ve got sewage in your lounge.” I think we do probably empathise on the flooding really but all is fair in love, football and flooding. In the end, gutted to come away with only a draw…but hey we survived.

Match stats
Match One
St Albans 3 Weymouth 0
Attendance 762
Unsuccessful financial investments – usual raffle and golden goal travesties Bacon Fries consumed 1 Packet
Cheese cobs purchased from the bar 2 (I was hungry and cold and they are quite petite)
Lager consumed 4 pints Stella…..I was led astray. Honest

Match Two
St Albans 1 Bideford 1
Attendance 363
Unsuccessful financial investments as per match one – don’t come to me for survival in a recession
Bacon Fries consumed 1 Packet
Additional Bacon Item bought from Andy’s snack van 1 Possibly the best crispy bacon cob EVER (yes Mr TLF I bet you wish you had braved the cold now don’t you)
Lager consumed 2 pints Stella, in a modest ‘it is aMonday night kind of a way’

Thing I Learnt This week?
When you hear a 15 year old supporter complain that, “the ref looks about 12,” you really do know that the world has gone mad.

Far from extinct TLF

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