Almanac Satire – AFL Executive interview: Tasmania, AFLX, AFLW

Tonight, interviewer Des Troyer is again joined by our anonymous up-and-coming AFL Executive.



Desmond: Mr Schooltie, thanks for joining us.


AFL Executive: Good evening.


Desmond: Mr Schooltie, I understand that you’ve just returned from a fact-finding mission to Tasmania. What did you learn?


AFL Executive: That’s right. Hobart, Desmond, we landed at Hobart. Have you been to MONA, Desmond? My word. What an incredible place that is. It totally challenges all preconceptions of art, of life, really. Extraordinary. Just extraordinary.


Desmond: I see.


AFL Executive: You really ought to see it, Desmond. I mean, what is art? What is it all about? Why are we here?


Desmond: I see. It sounds fascinating. And what did you learn of relevance to the AFL, Mr Schooltie?


AFL Executive: Ahh, well, I think the AFL Executive will need to book ahead for next time. We were a bit cramped. The restaurant played well, though. Hot-rolled steel doors and communal Tasmanian oak refectory tables. I think next time we’ll go with the quail eggs with shaved fennel, roast chicken skin and ajo blanco.


Desmond: I see. And did you learn anything at all related to Australian football?


AFL Executive: Sorry?


Desmond: Well I thought this might have been the reason for your trip – you know, covering things like the withdrawal of Burnie Dockers from Tasmania State League? Perhaps the absence of any Tasmanian draftees for the first time ever?


AFL Executive: Oh, there’s northing to worry about there. They love footy in Tasmania. It’s a guaranteed market.


Desmond: Market. Right. But times are changing, Mr Schooltie. Don’t you think the time is right for a Tasmanian-based team in the AFL?


AFL Executive: Well, we have two already.


Desmond: I think it’s a number much closer to zero.


AFL Executive: We can agree to disagree on that, Desmond.


Desmond: Hmm. How much did your trip cost the AFL, Mr Schooltie?


AFL Executive: I don’t see that that is a relevant question, Desmond.


Desmond: Yet you are an executive of the AFL, which claims tax-free status?


AFL Executive: Yes.


Desmond: While the organization records an operating surplus of $330 million in 2016?


AFL Executive: Yes.


Desmond: No corporate tax.


AFL Executive: That’s right, Desmond. Clever, isn’t it?


Desmond: And yet you ask taxpayers to fund work on the stadiums at which AFL football is played?


AFL Executive: I know, I know. It’s a bit embarrassing. But it’s true. We all get paid very handsomely for maintaining this little arrangement, I can tell you.


Desmond: So how much did your Tasmanian trip cost, Mr Schooltie?



AFL Executive: Oh that’s not my department. Sally made all the arrangements.


Desmond: Who is Sally, Mr Schooltie?


AFL Executive: Oh, she works in my office. She’s good value.


Desmond: I see.


AFL Executive: She did well getting us the penthouse suite. Magnificent.


Desmond: How is the culture there in AFL House these days?


AFL Executive: Superb views. Just superb.


Desmond: Yes. Were you able to watch any AFLW while in Tasmania, Mr Schooltie?


AFL Executive: Well there was none in Hobart. We don’t have a Tasmanian team.


Desmond: No. Did you see any on TV?


AFL Executive: Are you talking about AFLX?


Desmond: Well, no. I am talking about AFLW.


AFL Executive: I really think you should be talking about AFLX.


Desmond: Alright, let’s talk about AFLX.


AFL Executive: What a wonderful result that AFLX was for us in all key demographics. Exceeded expectations, Desmond. Exceeded expectations. That’s the most important point. Marketer’s dream.


Desmond: Nobody likes it.


AFL Executive: That’s not true. People lapped it up. Too much footy is barely enough.


Desmond: But to be fair, it’s not even footy.


AFL Executive: I didn’t pick you as being ‘anti-progress’, Desmond. Look, AFLX has flames. It has music DJs. It has in-game commentary. It has roving performers. It has kids and family zones. And giveaways. We’ve thought of everything.


Desmond: Hmm. Have you thought of any pre-game entertainment for AFL crowds in 2018?


AFL Executive: Well we’ve removed the ridiculous warm-up.


Desmond: Yes. Why?


AFL Executive: Our figures showed that warm-ups were interrupting crowd engagement with advertiser content. And no company would sponsor the warm-up.


Desmond: Not even the wool industry?


AFL Executive: Oh, that’s good, Desmond. We didn’t think of that.


Desmond: Or Jiffy Firelighters?


AFL Executive: Oh-ho. That’s very good. [reaches for phone],


Desmond: What are you doing?


AFL Executive: Just calling that Hobart restaurant. We need to increase our party. Are you free on Tuesday week?


Desmond: Mr Schooltie, thanks for joing us.


AFL Executive: [into phone] Sure. [To Desmond]: How do you feel about Saffron & chilli bouillabaisse, clams, and char-grilled seafood?


Previous interview with Mr Schooltie

About David Wilson

David Wilson is a writer, editor, flood forecaster and former school teacher. He writes under the name “E.regnans” at The Footy Almanac and has stories in several books. One of his stories was judged as a finalist in the Tasmanian Writers’ Prize 2021. He is married and has two daughters and the four of them all live together with their dog, Pip. He finds playing the guitar a little tricky, but seems to have found a kindred instrument with the ukulele. Favourite tree: Eucalyptus regnans.


  1. Yvette Wroby says

    Well done David. Got me thinking of Clarke and Dawes which is fine praise indeed. Have you got a secret microphone somewhere in Tassie you are not telling us about?

  2. Kasey Symons says

    This was my first introduction to Mr. Troyer and I have now deep dived through his previous interviews – what a hard hitting journalist he is, he doesn’t shy way from addressing the big issues and asking the tough questions, though his interviewee seems to!

    Thoroughly entertaining stuff ER.

  3. Georgina says

    Love it! Thank you.

  4. DanielleSpicer says

    Haha that was fantastic David. Thank you!

  5. Jarrod_L says

    Oh Yvette, you’ve sent me back into the C&D archive on youtube now. Still difficult to believe John’s gone…

    As for this piece, it’s rolled gold. Entertainment plus!

  6. Phillip Dimitriadis says

    Haha, ‘Anti progress’ Desmond?
    Reminds me of Bill Heslop in Muriel’s Wedding. You can’t stop progress anywhere apart from Tassie it seems. Wonder who has more tax-exempt money in the coffers, AFL or the Catholic Church? Mammon reigns unfortunately.
    Great stuff mate.

  7. E.regnans says

    Thanks all.
    But the AFL themselves have taken this to a new level this arvo.

  8. Luke Reynolds says

    Great stuff ER. As usual, D.Troyer is on the money.

     Saffron & chilli bouillabaisse, clams, and char-grilled seafood sounds really good if the AFL is paying.


  9. John Butler says

    E Reg, if only I could read this as satire.

    Documentary would seem more like it. Perhaps an AFL Video production, with moodily lit close-ups, evocative soundtrack and super slo-mo motages.

    The moment where Schooltie drops his quail egg will be heart rending. Nothing will ever seem the same.

  10. E.regnans says

    Thanks Luke, JB.
    I know.
    Truth is killing satire.
    From that afl link in my earlier comment…

    “…AFL general manager of China and India…”

  11. John Butler says

    First we take Mumbai, then we take Berlin…..

  12. mickey randall says

    As Mike Moore used to say on Frontline about resident Friday night funny man Elliot Rhodes, “He’s done it again.”

    However in your case Er there is no irony.

    Following from JB’s comment I reckon the AFL is certainly in post-satire territory. Has been for some time.

    Thanks David. Brilliant.

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