Rooey, Rooey … let’s celebrate and have a good time!

Rooey, Rooey … let’s celebrate and have a good time!

 

by Jennifer Muirden

 

During the recent Tigers finals berth, I was so impassioned, confused, and felt like I was betraying my beloved Saints, but I have to admit that I was on a high. Part of me thought what I was feeling was wrong, but at the same time, it felt instinctively so right. I was living mindfully, in the present moment, and embracing the sense of community even though it wasn’t necessarily my tribe. But part of me, my inner critic if you will, felt like a dirty scoundrel rat, a pariah, a traitor and somewhat of a renegade. To find myself so wooed, deeply immersed and exhilarated by Richmond Football Club’s success had left me doubting my fidelity. Moreover, I had little chance of succour from my Tiger mates who were delighted to have me join their tribe, albeit temporarily. Or perhaps I could employ a more compassionate attitude telling myself it was alright to shift the goalposts given my beloved team was out of finals contention?

 

My biggest concern was whether I had dismounted, done a full somersault flip, abandoned my beloved Saints? Had the goal posts now shifted for me? Was it conceivable that after 41 years of Fortius Quo Fidelius pumping forcefully through my veins that I had fallen off the wagon? I had to dig deep inside to truly access whether I was indeed red, white and black to the core.

 

But as I awakened from my slumber on the day of the 2017 Trevor Barker Awards I knew full well I was a bona fide Saint. As of this day, I officially got off the Tiger train. There was simply no denying it. I had shaken off the yellow and black shackles and was ready to once again adorn myself in red, white and black. It just comes so naturally. It’s about intuition. It’s about sickness…Saints sickness. No overthinking. For this is my passion, my heart and my soul. But for this ailment, sadly there is no cure. Or is there? I’m sure even a long-awaited second premiership win will never totally fix me. Sure, it’ll bring me cathartic relief but will I become addicted to the drug and want more and more somewhat like the Hawks fanatics during this last decade?

 

On Friday 6 October I attended the 2017 Trevor Barker Awards at Peninsula, Docklands with my older brother Scot along with a thousand other Saints faithful. This evening more than satiated my hunger to once again belong to my authentic tribe.

 

‘Rolls Royce’ Riewoldt arrived in style thanks to Mercedes Benz of Brighton.

 

We got there early to take advantage of the opportunity to have a photo taken with retiring teammates Nick Riewoldt and Leigh Montagna before all the official dinner and awards presentation began as the sun went down. It seemed impossible that anything would top this very special and intimate affair.

 

Colourful retro Sainter at Peninsula, Docklands posing in the line to get photographed with champion footballer retirees Nick Riewoldt and Leigh Montagna. Yvette Wroby for the first time ever was upstaged in the Saintly dress sense!

 

Me and my brother Scot flanked by fiercely loyal one club player retirees Roo and Joey.

But then we entered the main dining room and the evening just improved liked a quality bottle of aged red wine. Capably co-compered by Francis Leach and Alicia Loxley we became informed and were thoroughly entertained with guest speakers and archival footage. We learned that in 2017 the Saints had an impressive membership tally of 42,000, Alan Richardson was offered and accepted a 2-year contract extension and that the Saints would launch their AFL Women’s Team in 2020.

 

Captain Jarryn Geary’s speech to both the audience and then to his team members essentially went something like this, “We endeavour to make you proud of us … Rooey, Joey and ‘Shinner’, who prematurely finished, gave great service to both the Saints and the AFL leaving a big hole to fill … Boys, enjoy your breaks, come back refreshed after the break and come back committed and ready to walk in and make history” Stirring stuff, indeed.

 

Retiring Saints great of 17 years Sean Dempster’s farewell speech was an absolute ripper and he showed that aside from having been a consummate performer on the field he’s also an accomplished raconteur.

 

Justin Koschitzke, who retired along with Stephen Milne and Jason Blake in 2013, introduced the first of the two retirees Leigh ‘Joey’ Montagna (15 years) drafted back in 2002. This was evocative enough but the major final tribute and farewell to ‘Rolls Royce Roo’ was still yet to come!

 

As our main course plates were cleared from the table, there was a fitting tribute to Maddie Riewoldt and an appropriate promotion for Maddie Riewoldt’s Vision (MRV) and the #FightLikeMaddie cause. I wept uncontrollably as it took me back to attending the first ever Maddie’s Match in 2015 just months after Maddie Riewoldt cruelly lost her short life at the age of just 26 years of age (see http://www.footyalmanac.com.au/round-16-st-kilda-v-richmond-benevolence-beams-down-on-etihad-during-the-inaugural-maddies-match/).

 

Emotionally charged, and in need of a splash of fresh water on my face, I made my way upstairs to the bathrooms. It was upon leaving these Ally McBeal style mixed toilets, with dear friend Susan Swingler from The Angels, that I bumped into Nick Riewoldt’s father, Joe and we shared an incredibly memorable ‘purple heart’ moment together.

 

Shortly after returning to the table St.Kilda champion Nick Dal Santo, who notably in the 2011 season came second for the Brownlow Medal with a poll of 28 votes, took to the stage and introduced retiring champ Nick Riewoldt (17 years) drafted back in 2000.

 

Not a dry eye in the house as Roo delivers his farewell speech to the large gathering at Peninsula, Docklands.

 

The final official presentation of the night was crowning Sebastian Ross the rightful winner of this year’s Trevor Barker Award. Thoroughly earned and there was toasting all around. My wish now is that Seb continues to go from strength to strength and ends up taking out a Brownlow Medal in years to come. This would make up for the one that was stripped off his famous Bomber cousin, Jobe Watson. It seems only right that there’s at least one Charlie ends up in such a significant footy family.

 

2017 Trevor Barker Award Top 10
1. Sebastian Ross – 159 votes
2. Dylan Roberton – 124 votes
3. Jarryn Geary – 121 votes
4. Jake Carlisle – 119 votes
5. Jack Billings – 110 votes
6. Jack Steven – 108 votes
7. Jimmy Webster – 88 votes
8. Jack Newnes – 83 votes
9. Jade Gresham – 81 votes
10. Nathan Brown – 78 votes

 

Other award winners on the night included:
Best emerging young player – Jack Billings
Robert Harvey best club man award – Jarryn Geary
Lenny Hayes player trademark award – Jack Steele
Life membership – Sean Dempster, Jarryn Geary and Jack Steven

 

A friend and elated long-time Player Sponsor of Seb Ross was clearly a tad out of focus herself when she took this photo of me looking like a smitten kitten with Lenny Hayes Trademark Award winner Jack ‘Steelo’ Steele.

 

 

The evening was a resounding success and there was a very strong belief in the room that the Saints halos are destined to burn brightly in 2018. The following day, as I reflected on the function and how we partied on for hours into the wee hours of the morning, I felt compelled to write two little ditties in tribute to our now retired champion Nick Riewoldt.

 

 

Rooey, Rooey! by Jennifer Muirden

(To be sung to the tune of Louie Louie by The Kingsmen (1963) originally by Richard Berry (1957)
** Worth checking out Iggy Pop’s reworking of this song on his American Caesar album, 1993**

 

Rooey, Rooey, oh yeah, we beg of you to never go

Yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah we say

Rooey, Rooey, oh Nick, we cannot bear to see you go

 

A league of your own, with loads of gallantry

You played footy effortlessly

Your head always in the zone

More so when you were injury prone

 

Rooey, Rooey, no, no, no, no, no, we can never let you go

Oh no, I said

Rooey, Rooey, oh Nick, we cannot bear you to go

 

Travelling to Texas across the sea

You thought of a girl constantly

On that plane, you knew she was there

Your intuition led you there

 

Rooey, Rooey, oh no, you said I gotta go

Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah you said

Rooey, Rooey, oh champion, we said we know you gotta gopllree0-

 

Okay, let’s give the thumbs up right now!

 

We see

We sense your calling from above

You now deserve to embrace the love

Of your sons and wife Katherine

Forever part of the inner sanctum

 

Rooey, Rooey, oh how, we know you gotta go

Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah we said

Rooey, Rooey, oh champion, we know you gotta go

 

You said you gotta go now

 

All your ducks in a row

 

You’re free to go

“Roo Boy” by Jennifer Muirden May, 2015

Celebrate Riewoldt, come on! by Jennifer Muirden

(Sung to the tune of Celebration by Kool & The Gang from their Celebrate album, 1980)

 

Celebrate Riewoldt, come on!

(Let’s celebrate)

Celebrate Riewoldt, come on!

(Let’s celebrate)

 

There’s a party going on right here

A celebration that’s lasted years

So bring your good time and your laughter too

We gonna celebrate your party with you!

 

Come on now, celebration

Let’s all celebrate and have a good time

Celebration

We gonna celebrate and have a good time

 

It’s time to come together

It’s up to you, what’s your pleasure?

Everyone who loves AFL, come on!

 

Riewoldt!

It’s a celebration

Riewoldt!

 

Celebrate good times, come on!

(It’s a celebration)

Celebrate good times, come on!

(Let’s celebrate)

 

There’s a party goin’ on around here

A dedication to the last seventeen years

So bring your good times and your laughter too

We gonna celebrate and party with you

 

Come on now, celebration

Let’s all celebrate and have a good time, yeah yeah

Celebration

We gonna celebrate Nick Riewoldt …and have a good time!

 

It’s time to come together

You’ve brought us so much pleasure!

Everyone around the world come on!

 

Riewoldt!

It’s a celebration

Riewoldt!

It’s a celebration

 

Celebrate good times, come on!

(Let’s celebrate Nick Riewoldt!)

Celebrate good times, come on!

(Let’s celebrate)

 

We’re gonna have a good time tonight

Let’s celebrate, it’s all right

We’re gonna have a good time tonight

Let’s celebrate, it’s all right, Riewoldt

 

We’re gonna have a good time tonight

(Celebration)

Let’s celebrate, Nick Riewoldt!

We’re gonna have a good time tonight

(Celebration)

Let’s celebrate, Nick Riewoldt!

 

Riewoldt!

Riewoldt!

 

Celebrate good times, come on!

(Let’s celebrate)

Celebrate good times, Riewoldt!

(It’s a celebration)

 

Celebrate good times, come on!

(Let’s celebrate)

(Come on and celebrate tonight)

Celebrate good times, Riewoldt!

(‘Cause everything’s gonna be alright, let’s celebrate)

 

Celebrate good times, come on!

(Let’s celebrate)

 

Celebrate good times, Nick Riewoldt!

About Jennifer Muirden

Jennifer Muirden has been a keen St Kilda supporter since 1978 and fondly remembers her childhood Saturdays spent at Linton Street, Moorabbin. In her lifetime she hopes to experience the Saints second Premiership.

Comments

  1. Hey my Sainter friend Jen!

    It’s a great read and I sense how much you love our beloved Saints. We don’t need cue for Saints addiction, do we? Lol

    The night seemed stunning and I wish I could be there too. It’s sad to see Rooey go though… Also we will miss Joey and the ‘Shinner’.

    You seem to have emotion on Maddie Riewoldt Vision Match. Even Rooey won’t play, I am planning to attend the game next year (Round 18). Yvette and I discussed which game(s) I should attend, when we visited Seaford and Morrabbin. I thought I could attend only the previous match against Carlton as Kyoto will be busy due to the Gion Festival, but I will stay in Melbourne longer for the MRV Match. I can’t miss the big blockbuster and the fundraising match.

    I miss Melbourne so much and hope we have another great time on my next visit to Melbourne.

    All the best.

    Yoshi

  2. Yvette Wroby says:

    Well said Jenn . GobSaints for 2018

  3. Phillip Dimitriadis says:

    Great stuff Jen,
    Some terrific memories and re-working of Kool and The Gang for a Saints legend. I can also picture you getting into this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JQLF37csfhI
    Cheers

  4. Jennifer McClung says:

    You are a Sainter to the core 100%! I bleed red, black and white (you may want to get the checked btw lol). But how could you not jump on the Tiger train the Tiger army love was contagious and you wanted them to win and celebrate too. ? Even I was here in Cali cheering but my heart forever will be a Cats ?.

    The Songs were a great dedication to Roo!

    Love the pic you painted!! Beautiful

  5. Jennifer Muirden says:

    **Please note corrections are pending**

  6. A great read, as always, Jen.
    Glad to see normal service has resumed in terms of your passion for your beloved Saints.
    Despite no longer having an AFL team (Fitzroy R.I.P.), I now try to follow the game objectively.
    However, the sheer momentum of the Tiger Army had me also hoping for a Richmond premiership, despite my one-time animosity for the yellow-and-black.
    From a supporter’s perspective, I think sport is vaguely analogous to preferential voting in elections.
    At the start of the season, you fervently hope your team wins the flag, but when that’s no longer possible your preferences shift elsewhere (albeit far less passionately) as a way of maintaining your interest.

  7. Jennifer Muirden says:

    Yoshi – yes absolutely if you can make it to Maddie’s match Saints v Tiges that would be ideal.

    Yvette – Look forward to catching up with you in the Victory Room more often in 2018!

    Phil – oh yes, love get down get down and loved the rendition of Jungle Boogie in nineties cult hit, Quentin Tarantino’s ‘Pulp Fiction’

    Jennifer- lovely to know someone half way around the world who also doesn’t barrack for Richmond found themselves so emotionally invested in the Tiges exciting premiership win.

    Fitzroy Pete – Yes, instead of feeling sorry for myself I should show some gratitude for the fact that my beloved Saints are still actually competing in the AFL. The extinction of Fitzroy FC is one of the saddest things that has happened in Australian Rules history. The Saints came close in the eighties but thanks to the loyal supporter group and faithful Saints such as Lindsay Fox, Gerry Ryan, Barry Breen, Eric Bana, Danny ‘Spud’ Frawley, and numerous others I could mention, who made personal financial pledges and emotionally invested in terms of publicity driving donations such that the StKilda FC remains very much alive 144 years later! This is some feat, indeed and I am so very grateful and proud that my beloved Saints legacy lives on and I have every hope that we will go marching in once again for just the second time in 2018!

Leave a Comment

*