Almanac Footy (heartbreak): She was teasing me all along


Just metaphorical moments ago, I went public with a new declaration of love for her, revitalised and strengthened. My vows renewed.


But now, she has gone again. My red and white heart-throb has packed her bags and left. To the anonymity of a Queensland sojourn, devoid of local love.


A decision taken whilst I slept and dreamt of seeing her again on a chilly yet delightful Victorian country excursion this weekend. The prospect of knowing her over coming weeks in a manner that might prompt a re-commitment from her, in ways long forgotten.


She has her reasons; she always did. But understanding and acceptance are not always linked notions, particularly when the news is abruptly delivered.


And to think, just yesterday she had embraced our mutual love affair and announced that the garment that evokes such delight would be shared with us – with me – again and again, whilst she enjoyed the hospitality of her first home. That white with a splash of red that takes me back to a simpler time, when I first knew her charms.


Forty years had vanished before my eyes as I welcomed her back home. But memories of 1982 have flooded back in an instant; a loss that clearly I have never truly reconciled. I wonder if her momentary loss South of the border now evokes a matching reaction for the Sydney brethren? Four decades is surely long enough to have spawned true love?


I have witnessed my children wrap their arms around and claim her as a local once again. Their local. A depth of understanding of who she once was, filling my heart with joy. “South Melbourne,… South Melbourne”.


Please forgive my adolescent lament, whilst I re-set my emotions to resume a lower place in her pecking order; a  supporting role. “Two cities, One team”, has delivered in spades and  I shall be forever grateful for the gifts she has bestowed upon me, especially on 24 September 2005.  But the the chronology of our component parts within Roosy’s declaration on that day: “to the people who have waited 72 years to see South Melbourne/Sydney Swans win the premiership, here it is”, reflects my true inner order.


For a month I have been titillated but teased and now must learn to again accept that she has to be shared. Reality bites.


Cheer, cheer!


The Tigers (Covid) Almanac 2020 will be published in 2021. It will have all the usual features – a game by game account of the Tigers season – and will also include some of the best Almanac writing from the Covid winter.  Pre-order HERE


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About chris bracher

Known to stare longingly down Clarendon St still wondering how his red and white heroes ever left him, Chris Bracher's pining for his relocated team has been somewhat appeased by recent Bloods glory....but the pain never truly goes away!


  1. CITRUS BOB says

    BSA (Bood Stained Angel) – oh you are in a bad way. Went looking for some red and white flowers this morning but could not find any – they must have receded over the border and we are not allowed to go there!

  2. Chris Bracher says

    Yep – one view is that I’m showing cry-baby hypersensitvity Citrus. Im a sensitive soul!
    However, let me remind you of how much your blue and white hooped crew screamed when having a few “home” games scheduled in Melbourne a few years ago. I contend that my sentimental csse is stronger!
    Happy birthday Legend.

  3. She will return. She always does.

  4. Chris Bracher says

    And I will be waiting Smokie.

  5. Hayden Kelly says

    As a Bulldogs supporter after last weekend i couldn’t see the back of her quick enough and i am hoping she doesn’t visit us again in September .
    Good read
    Cheer Cheer the Red and the White .

  6. Chris Bracher says

    The ying and yang that is a passionate footy supporters lot eh Hayden?!
    The word association Footscray/Western Bulldogs, South Melbourne/ Sydney and September remains an anxiety trigger for me, derived of “the one that got away”.
    So – whilst revenge is a dish best served cold – the prospect of the Bulldogs not seeing us in September is not without its mutual appeal!
    Thanks for reading my piece.

  7. The Sydney Swans are not, and never will be, South Melbourne. South died the day they left the Lake Oval.

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