Almanac Writing Competition – #almanac280: Finals

Finals time.
Footy finals bring many memories; memories of sound, smell, anticipation… of victory and defeat.


The Competition:


Write a story inspired by footy finals.
The story cannot be more than 280 characters long. (A space is a character. Every key stroke is a character.)
Each story needs to include the tag #almanac280.
So there go 11 of your characters.


Entries close at 6.00pm on Thursday 19 September 2019. 


How to Enter:


There are two ways to enter:

1. Via Twitter. Judges will access all stories with the “#almanac280” tag.
2. Via the comments field below.

Judges will ensure that all entries are published both in the comments field below and on the @thefootyalmanac Twitter feed.
Enter as many times as you like.


The Prize:


Almanac membership and two books from the Almanac Shop will go to the author of our favourite story; in the spirit of the Almanac.
The winning entry will be announced on Friday 20 September (day of the first AFL Preliminary Final).


Check out previous #almanac280 competitions:


#almanac280: Sport. Write from the Heart
#almanac280: Adelaide
#almanac280: Tigers 2017




Our writers are independent contributors. The opinions expressed in their articles are their own. They are not the views, nor do they reflect the views, of Malarkey Publications.


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  1. @swishtter
    We smashed the Dogs by plenty. 6yo & I line up at Arts Centre, get tickets in Q9 (No Gold Membership needed).
    Ali shuffles around the boundary, on wheels. Crows look lost, but kicking straight. Then Bunji wins it for us. Enjoy it while you can.


  2. @swishtter

    Hicks’ second season. The magnificent new white guernsey. Duckworth takes them all on, wins the Magarey. Minor Premiers. Now they’ll stop looking down on the northern suburbs. 1979 will be Centrals’ year.

    Straight sets.


  3. @annalyst_sports

    Through busy weeks we meet on Sunday nights. Bounce is our constant, through the TV it blares. Dad and I haven’t missed it in years. We will miss it now.
    Spud the epitome of footy and family.
    We didn’t know him but we did, everyone did.

  4. Finals time. Like forgetting your pants in public and hoping no-one notices the performance is less than the promise. Chris suddenly remembered what his mum told him about always having a clean pair.

  5. @swishtter
    Berri’s ruckman Malcolm Hill knocked back his third longneck, one for each flag. On Monday, the telegram boy dumped his red Standish on Hill’s verandah. It was from Sturt, again.



  6. Finals time is knowing you’ve seen this movie before. Collingwood fans dread Jaws. Geelong is No Country for Old Men. Eagles fans know its Dirty Dancing. Nobody puts baby in the corner.

  7. @e_regnans

    Cut grass. Sun on faces.
    The far wing firm.
    “You know they’ll come for you, big boy.”
    Remembering the opponent, Round 9.
    “Bring it in.”
    “Come on!”
    “Our time is now.”
    Centre square tacky.
    He’s bigger than I remember.
    “Eyes up, rucks.”


  8. @cweaver1983

    Up the gravel slope, Football Record in hand. Dad goes to the wrong turnstile, but they let us in. Homemade Demons streamer in hand, we climb the steps to the wing. The greensward VFL Park sits below and a new footy supporting life begins. Thanks, Dad – I love you.


  9. @swishtter

    Coach:Today is really important. If we beat the Gazelles by 12 and the Budgies lose, we might make finals. So some of you might only play one quarter.

    Emily:But Coach, we’ve only scored four goals all season.

    Katie:Can I please have another snake?

    Sarah:Me too


  10. Gillian Dite says


    There’s a well-worn path along the Merri Creek for the early morning dog walkers. We spy each other’s beanies. “Go Tiges”, I say. “Carn the Tiges”, she replies, with a broad grin. It’s cold this morning but spring is in the air and there’s a spring in my step.


  11. Mickey Randall says


    Dispatching a Bulldog, Tex seized the footy/chalice, bounced twice, approached the arc.

    With his disposal honed by long afternoons of kick-to-kick at Willyama High School he took a sharp breath and arrowed the ball inward to Cameron.

    Tex just won us the match.


  12. Micky Randall says


    The terrifying outchorus of, “You Took the Words Right Out of My Mouth” saw Meat alternately surge ahead as if Kool-ade gasping, and then drop back a length behind his band. By the end all wished to insert those mangled words right back into the atonal Texan’s mouth.


  13. “Blown it. Too many easy misses. Run out of time” he told the Avenging Eagle with the certain calm of the perpetually disappointed mug punter. Just as Steele chipped sideways once too often and Adam launched a panicked left footer. “Goooov” and he put down the gun. #worldsuicidepreventionday

  14. @AndrewGigacz

    SATURDAY ARVO. Yarra Park. Freshly cut lawn. The smell of hope. Spring is ours!
    SATURDAY, DUSK. Walking home. Freshly cut lawn. The stench of defeat. Spring is theirs now.
    SUNDAY MORN. Bat, pads, gloves. Freshly cut lawn. The scent of expectation. Summer will be ours!


  15. Brian Barrish says



    A million miles away from the G,
    And your local suburban ground.

    But the ovals are the same.
    So too the Sherrin leather.
    And the 4n20s.

    We yell “ball!”
    And “cmon umpie!”
    With the best of them.

    This game is ours too.


  16. Mickey Randall says


    Quarter time a footy trip surges into the Taminga pub. All sport nametags. My collective noun’s wrong- it’s a buckshow. I ask the groom’s brother, “So, what’s the plan?”

    “Top pub, middle pub, bottom pub.”

    Rebounding in towns across the grand final terrain.

  17. Jamie Simmons says


    It’s the 82 Grand Final. Blues v Tigers. I follow the Lions and yet I cannot look away. Doull evades the tackle. My 10 year old heart is pounding. The Dominator fumes. Nothing makes sense. Am I sweating? What does it all mean? Tell me, Helen D’Amico, please!

  18. The ball’s in Leo Barry’s hands.
    The final siren sounds.
    The sky is painted red and white…
    and weeping joy abounds.

  19. Dad a Hawk. Mum a Swan. Both seasons gone. Kids, 4 & 7, are Tigers. Parents brace for Despair to hit the kids at horrifying speed. One thinks of Kipling: “Watch the things you gave your life to, broken, and stoop and build ’em up.” Only the kids dare dream of Triumph. #almanac280

  20. @TruckerSlim

    We were high. High on hope, blood smoking. The premiership quarter was never more so. God’s son get’s one, yeah good one. Our moment is almost here. Buddy beauty. Then Junior. And then? And then? And then along came Dew. Dewy! God bless our fat freakin messiah.

  21. @GilWritesHere

    Miss those sleepless
    Finals nights,
    Split-shift sleeping, full of dreams
    Alarm set for 2 am,
    Silence those impulsive screams
    Headphones on
    With purple jumper
    iTunes plays “TNT”
    At LA’s dawn
    Slumber calls me
    Joyful in the rising sun,
    Giddy knowing
    Freo’s won

  22. The Hand Of Fear says


    1979: Mum is desperate to show me a footy match before we move to Brisbane. VFL Park opens out in front of me with welcoming arms. I’m swept away in its embrace. My cousin shows me how to spit chewing gum on the Footscray full-forward. Pies win. When can we go again?

  23. Liahm O'Brien says


    “It’s OVER! Richmond, are through to a preliminary final. What a thrill for Danny Frawley and his boys!” – A premiership heals many wounds, but the memories of an 8 year old boy and his heroes will remain forever. Long live 2001, long live Spud

  24. @diogenesbrown

    I go for a walk through the streets, the lounge room no longer capable of containing the rage. The barracking escaping neighbourhood windows and doorways remains joyless, nothing good inside. I keep walking, bloody football.

  25. Dusty Martin weaves around two opponents, gives a trademark don’t argue to Varcoe and delivers a lace out foot pass to his full forward. The final siren blows as he lines up for goal. Collingwood lead by 5 points. In what at first appears to be a terrible shank, the ball curls around in mid air and goes through the goals. Richmond have done the impossible and won by 1 solitary point.

  26. @steiny71

    Exhausted, dirty, covered in sweat. I look at him, my son. The lips, downturned, the eyes, red and misty. They look at me now, pleading, hoping for an answer to the aching hurt. I have nothing for him. His first Grand Final loss.
    “Next year” and a hug is all I’ve got.

  27. @swishtter

    Monday night on the group chat, Hayley realises that only six of the girls have qualified for finals & Kelly is rostered on for Wednesday night so can’t play. “If your sister gets back in time, can she fill in?” she asks Gabby. “They won’t know the difference”

  28. The Hand Of Fear says


    1984: My best school mate in Brisbane is an Essendon fan who loves to come over and watch the Bombers smash whoever they’re playing on Match of the Day. My parents groan as his bike mounts the kerb and he makes his way to our door. He’s irritatingly Essendon.

  29. The Hand Of Fear says


    1987: Somehow, Brisbane has managed to get its own VFL team! I’m sure it’ll only be at Carrara temporarily. Shame about the jumper. And the song. And is a koala actually a bear? But this means that Collingwood will be playing actual matches in Queensland! So exciting.

  30. The Hand Of Fear says


    1989: The Bears are not working out. Carrara wasn’t temporary after all – they’ve been hijacked by business shonks. My mate and I go to most games now that he’s got a car, and we support the Bears as a second team, after Collingwood (me) and Essendon (him).

  31. The Hand Of Fear says


    1993: The Bears are actually playing in Brisbane! Now it’s worth us getting a season ticket. Annoyingly we’re surrounded by people who support the Bears every week, except when they’re playing their own team. Grr. But – hang on – that’s me too. No. This isn’t right.

  32. The Hand Of Fear says


    1993: The Bears are starting to look like a real footy team. My mate has crossed the Rubicon; it’s time I did the same. I’m coming out to my family as a Bears fan. Goodbye Collingwood, forever.

    They take it is well as can be expected.

  33. The Hand Of Fear says


    1995: Sydney beats Collingwood. I’ve never enjoyed a Pies loss before, let alone to this degree. It’s enabled the Bears to make the finals for the first time. My mate and I embrace joyfully. Once we were Pie vs Bomber, now we are Brisbane brothers-in-arms.

  34. Mick Jeffrey says


    So we’re defending our flag that we won the previous year, yet it’s my 1 shot at getting an elusive flag. Yes it’s a dirty day sitting for three quarters next to others, and I only get two kicks for the day, but at least I got a chance to play in a GF #HAPPILYRETIRED

  35. @TheBlackCat1859

    Childhood. Grand final week. Aerial streamers and windows full of balloons. Thursday night training – ground is familiar but seats unknown. Sun lowering, shadows lengthening. Heroes metres away. Uncertainty and expectation form an unlikely marriage. Two sleeps to go.

  36. Mick Jeffrey says


    So the siren goes and your team has won the premiership, but I’m in street clothes. Not injured, not wanted, not required. They say you’re part of this but it’s easy to see through the lie. You act happy for your mates but the greatest day ever becomes the worst ever

  37. @Crawsh76

    Geelong Falcons v Central Dragons at Kardinia Park. Scotty Lucas snaps the winner with the last kick of the day. Our coach Slug Jordan won’t be happy. I then sit in the stands to watch my Cats get soundly beaten by the emerging Brisbane Bears. Who is this Voss fellow?

  38. @e_regnans

    The Southern Stand is without her roof.
    Squints for young and old.
    Quarter time it’s two goals each but struth –
    Gavin Brown’s out cold.

  39. @TruckerSlim

    Dragons might just blow this game apart. Bullants goal; game on. For five minutes we dared imagine the unlikeliest of finishes. The siren spoiled the party but who would deny our Colts who delivered week after week all the way to the Big Dance. Mighty effort boys.

  40. Mick Jeffrey says


    2 days before the GF, training with the 17s preparing for our tilt when a call comes. I answer as a young kid should, my presence is required at the team photo. The SENIORS team photo. Not too shabby for a 15 year old waterboy yet to play a match with or against men.

  41. Adam Paul Haase says


    Round 9 2000.

    Just another round in just another season.

    I am 8 years old (9 on GF day that year.)

    I make my crowd debut.

    It was different.
    It was new.
    It was immersive.

    Confusion about commentators voices being absent.


    One of 2 games that year.

  42. Adam Paul Haase says



    Either the car or doing stuff in my room.

    is what I returned to.

    “For McDonalds, Triple M rocks footy.”

    I can place myself at certain moments.

    The dukes.
    The picioane.
    The headwobbling.
    The laughs.
    The banter.

    2008 again please.

  43. Meredith Schier says


    Senior cousins, eight and nine decades young settle into their seats at the G. Share the recent family and team news – more interested in the latest baby update than their own health challenges. Stalwarts’ hearts beat true for their Melbourne FC team; in finals or not

  44. Mick Jeffrey says


    Missing a final sucks, too soon to recover from a hamstring injury. Tried to run but can’t, so I watch our season end from the stands. The remedy? Entering Bridge to Brisbane a week later. Suddenly the running bug has been caught, 19 marathons later it still remains…

  45. @AndrewGigacz


    SEP 8: Dogs d Eagles. My boys’ birth dates slip from No. 1 to No. 2 on the Greatest Days of My Life list.

    SEP 16: Dogs d Hawks. The birthdays slip to No. 3.

    SEP 24: Dogs d Giants. The birthdays slip to No. 4.

    OCT 1: Dogs d Swans. The birthdays slip to No. 5.

  46. Adam Paul Haase says


    Starts off with the immediates.
    Then the folk who attends to casualties. (Forced or unforced.)
    Then their colleagues.
    Then their families.
    Then friends.

    Death is a ripple in a wave.

    A different wave forms.
    The supportive sort.

  47. Adam Paul Haase says


    Fallibility is a thing that makes man of us.
    Different reactions to different situations abound.
    Man is complicated but man is also simple.
    We can never predict what situations affect or impact people.
    We can conceptualise and contextualise using a myriad of options.

  48. Colin Ritchie says

    Leon Baker you little beauty! Bobby Davis said you’d never make it. ’84 you cast your spell, twisting and turning, spinning around, you kicked that goal, and a premiership beckoned. We jumped for joy. Leon Baker, game breaker and premiership maker! #almanac280

  49. G.A Thompson says

    Finally face the Mountainmen in the finals
    The alps deliver a boggy ground, cloudless sky
    Vapour trails far up, Sydney bound
    It’s 36.23.239 to nil
    But not our way
    Sloppy thud, forward flank, I trap and snap
    The late hit spills a contact lens


  50. Adam Paul Haase says



    Suddenly, they’re equally apart (if more skewered unevenly now.)

    22 years since my prep debut.
    22 years until I hit 50.

    Shit this has crept up on me quickly.

    1990’s folk are slowly becoming 30 year olds.



  51. Swish

    Outside Gate 2. The young bloke is there first,waiting for the bloke from Souths,the raconteur,the erstwhile muso, the host in his beret & the bedraggled minstrel. The early fans form an orderly half circle in their camp chairs at a respectful distance.

    Almost 10am


  52. Adam Paul Haase says


    2000 QF.

    Channel 7 with the secondary/shitter scorebug.

    100th goal for the season for the No. 18.

    55-26 1/4 Time turned into 159-58 at 3/4 Time.
    198-73 the end and a favourite number of mine is born.


  53. thecheese01
    Michael Voss, Dennis Pagan, Adam Goodes, Chris Fagan
    Centre bounce, Krakouer Brothers, blowing minds, like few others.
    Tony Modra, Nat Fyfe, Ben Cousins, Such is life.
    Kevin Sheedy, Lethal Leigh, September at the MCG
    We didn’t start the fire
    It was always burning

  54. G.A.Thompson says


    How 2 hours of perpetual motion distills to a crystal clear moment?
    That you carry as a hollow heartache.

    79EF: Garry Wilson daisycutter to a lead :(
    81EF: Max Crow another point hands on head :(
    86EF: Micky Conlan muscles the winner :(

    BUT..Leon Baker blindturn :)

  55. P. Dimitriadis says


    September 8th, 1990 at 6:00pm. Sitting in the car at VFL Park convinced that I’ll never see a Collingwood Premiership in my lifetime.


  56. Cathi Johnston says


    Sat 29/9/18 2.30pm 100,212 spectators roar at the first bounce.
    Sat 29/9/18 5.07pm McGovern to Vardy to Flyin’ Ryan to Sheed. GOAL!!!
    Sat 29/9/18 5.10pm final siren – 22 players and 1 coach become Eagles heros FOREVER!!!

  57. @BigV2001WCE

    May 29 2005 A young Eagle by the name of Mark LeCras makes his debut on my 11th birthday as West Coast crush then-reigning premier Port Adelaide by 117 points at Subiaco Oval #Almanac280

  58. @DChauff

    Cats face finals nadir
    Flag hopes to straight sets glare
    Scurry for flags from VFA era
    Each year the picture is clearer
    There’ll be no flag for these warriors
    A millstone to heavy for mere quarriers
    Wisdom passed from father to son
    Won’t be enough to get this job done #almanac280

  59. TigrTigrBrningBright says


    The crafty Tigers play the AFL for idiots on clash jumpers, then knock out the living legend on his special day, and fly home laughing with the 4 points. Ty was kissing babies and signing autographs afterwards as though he’d singlehandedly won us a prelim final. #almanac280

  60. Smokie Dawson says


    My favorite ever player, I think of you often, but especially in September. Of how you imposed yourself on finals. Of how you loved to strut your stuff on the big stage. I miss you. And I wonder if your uniqueness would be accepted now, Brent ‘’Tiger” Crosswell? #Almanac280

  61. @e_regnans

    The chat is somehow louder
    The golden sun returns
    Missed 3 weeks with a hamstring
    The hunger in me burns.
    We’re in the granny this year
    I’ve passed the midweek test.
    Lunging here in warm up
    I’ve torn the good one – blessed.


  62. @TruckerSlim

    Six emu exports in, at least. $20, we got this, anyone? You’re on. Baker, bugger. That was too easy. Bradbury, Thompson, Baker. WTF. The Roebuck heaves with the game’s momentum. I’m pissed. Merrett, two to Timmy. We’re being bombed with Bomber goals. I need more beer. #almanac280

  63. 1997 and Malcolm Blight, the Messiah, orchestrates an unexpected Crows victory over St Kilda in the Grand Final. But our story doesn’t end there for, as the song says, “It’s the bloody Crows again” in 1998, coming from behind to toss a wayward North Melbourne.

    #almanac 280

  64. @AndrewGigacz

    Bones McGhie’s cigarette and post-match beer.
    Barassi, fists clenched, bouncing up off the bench.
    Helen D’Amico turning the tide against the Tigers.
    Women young and old, decked out in blue and white.
    Snake’s mark.
    I wasn’t there.
    But I was, thanks to Rennie Ellis.


  65. Hazy morning. Off at Jolimont, bleary-eyed, sleep-deprived. Yarra Park is bustling. People queue up to Wellington Parade. Sun breaks the horizon, the bubble of chatter is alive. Nervous excitement hangs in the air, beckoning forth the daring. It’s Grand Final day. #almanac280

  66. #almanac280 editorial guidelines. Blow play-on +280. Magpie comments straight to MRP. 50 metres for VFL references. Hawks flags round the neck. Tigers “ball”. Saints get a charity. Cats overpossessing. @eregnans posing as Phil Inn on many posts. One for the leadership group.

  67. Smokie Dawson says


    Inequality growing. Populism triumphing. Environment dying. Climate crises, trade wars, famines, Trump, Brexit. What does the future hold for us?
    But when the ball is bounced, for three hours, we can escape into the joy of the game, and put all troubles behind us #Almanac280

  68. @MatterOfStats

    My Dad died in the same hospital I was born in, a stone’s throw from the home ground of the Canterbury Bulldogs, a team he reluctantly adopted, and next door to the park where I scored 39 run out, still my top score

    Now, I kinda love Aussie Rules

    Life’s complicated


  69. The big toe is mightier than the sword. Clonk! Off the Scarlett toe to Ablett to mayhem to Varcoe to Chappy. To the premiership. #Almanac280.

  70. @diogenesbrown

    Never cried at the footy before. Flag already won, as the opponent turned inside her knee gave way.

    Nothing to be angry at – Adelaide Oval’s pitch was perfect, no thuggish opponent to despise.

    Just time

    Angry at all time we missed out on getting to watch her play.


  71. @peteguley

    I sensed this was a huge footy season.
    New coach. He usually coached the older boys. This was special.
    GF 3/4 time. We gathered around the coaches’ chair as he could no longer walk.
    With his encouragement we tried our best but couldn’t win.
    That was Dad’s last game.


  72. @sl0wgan

    A rainy Melbourne day in 2013. Pavlich brings us within a point in the 3rd. For the first time in my life I’m daring to dream. Defeat. Such is the life of the Freo faithful.


  73. @swishtter

    Three medals, 237 games, 25 for his state, 9 times B&F. One final, a loss. Two black eyes.

    He’s 80 now. Rounded shoulders,walking with a stick down the shabby shopping strip. Is that really him they ask, craning their necks behind them?

    How’s his September?


  74. @e_regnans

    Grand Final Day. Pregame tension. Under 17s.
    -Hahahaha you’re a goose, Macca.
    -Hahaha. Ohmygod.
    -You need to see this, Coach.
    -What’s he done, now?
    -Hahaha. Macca!
    -Macca. I like it. But is this the best moment to shave your own underarms?


  75. Gillian Dite says


    It’s hump day, just after lunch, and there are still two more sleeps until Friday night footy. Work days drag on for an eternity in September. I might just have a quick look at the AFL website before beginning my afternoon tasks.

  76. @e_regnans

    Just another game, they said.
    Biggest game of your life, they said.
    Block it out.
    Soak it up.
    Play your role, they said.
    Make yourself a star, they said.
    So many words.

    Bounce the bloody ball.


  77. I have a few questions the little boy said:
    What did the footy gods do before footy?
    How many soccer World Cups would Australian have won if footy didn’t rule the roost?
    What would we do in September without the finals?
    Did footy give rise to Ablett or did Ablett exalt footy?
    Very good questions, I replied.

  78. @e_regnans


  79. Adam Paul Haase says


    September 14.
    Footy’s big names gear up for a Brisbane-GWS SF.

    But, for a bracket of time, we all pause to listen to compelling radio.
    The pause is a tribute.

    Des Tuddenham’s nephew the No. 1 topic.

    Laughing and crying abound.


  80. Adam Paul Haase says


    2001 SF.

    Saturday arvo.

    First VFLM/AFLM game in the new mindset.

    67-56 the final pairing.

    Margin seemingly a coincidence.

    Kouta’s knee gives way.
    312 games is all for SOS.

    Football rendered secondary.


  81. @e_regnans

    A 12-year-old plays his first final.
    “Stick right with Number 12 today.”
    “Take your first option.”
    “Nothing fancy.”
    “Just like we trained.”
    “You can do it.”
    “That cloud looks exactly like Spiderman.”

  82. The grevillea overrun like the midfield. The retic leaking like the defence. Leaves dropped in piles like forward opportunities. The coach’s icy stare. “Season’s over buster. Run out of excuses.” Consigned to a long pre-season in the garden. #almanac280

  83. Unable to attend GF lunch STOP Unexpected death in family STOP Congrats your new arrival STOP Underweight but should thrive if survives week STOPPED Of Perth

  84. @AndrewGigacz

    An old man tries to navigate through social media in September:
    “LOL. Last On the Ladder?”
    “WTF. Won The Final?”
    “FML. Finals Misgivings Lurk?”
    “BTW. Brisbane To Win?”
    “SMH. September Means Heartache?”
    “ROFL. Richmond — Or Fitzroy Lions?”
    “TBH. Tom Bloody Hawkins!”


  85. @e_regnans

    We sat in the rooms.
    Macca – exhausted.
    Mopsy there – married now (who could believe it?)
    Big Jim.
    Bomber – lost his brother in May.
    Another year over.
    Snapper – curled up on the floor with his baby twins.
    We would never share a room again.

  86. Adam Paul Haase says


    2000 QF. (Good.)
    2000 PF. (Good.)
    2001 QF. (Good.)
    2001 PF. (Good.)
    2002 EF1. (Good.)
    2002 SF1. (Bad.)
    2003 EF1. (Good.)
    2003 SF. (Bad.)
    2004 EF1. (Good.)
    2004 SF. (Bad.)
    2009 EF1. (Bad.)
    2011 EF1. (Bad.)
    2014 EF2. (Bad.)
    2017 EF2. (Bad.)
    2019 EF1. (Bad.)

    One day.


  87. Mickey Randall says


    Paddy begins forward in the 2017 prelim and takes a contested grab, to the delight of the Cats crew who encircle me, like a TS Eliot creation. But he pushes the drop-punt to the right, as if he, too, is puzzled by the haunting absence of the Chicken Salt hoarding.


  88. @e_regnans

    The end came swiftly.
    Life had changed; foundations of his adulthood rearranged like so many playing cards.
    They’d knocked off the runs.
    For the last time he sat on the pavilion steps; steps of these past dozen summers.
    Pads still on.


  89. @8998Philip

    Umpiring for 2 years & stay for a few beers at Mt. Pleasant after they win. Very enjoyable. Each club nominate their umpire so I get to umpire my first senior final. My experienced umpires want to know why it was me. Raise your glasses to country footy.


  90. John Donegan says


    She told him that she dreamed about escaping. That was all she dreamed about: escape. She saw herself at night running naked down the wing, running across the painted fifty, running towards goal, always running.”

    #Almanac280 with apologies to Sam Shepard; Paris, Texas (1984)

  91. @e_regnans

    Thin custard puddles in a bowl; slides down his chin.
    Doesn’t recognise this room.
    Or that woman just gone. Who was that?

    Sunlight angles through sheer curtains.

    Closing his eyes, he’s back on the MCG.
    Again he soars for the mark.
    He smiles.

    Final memories.


  92. His teams yields meekly. Footy is an ugly game. Thugs and brutes. Rub ’em all out. I’m not watching any more. This year. #almanac280

  93. @BoyceTim

    The smell of jonquils, and freshly cut grass. A touch of warmth in the sun. And that once lost, but now familiar September knot in the stomach. I want it to end, but I don’t. ‘Carn the Tiges’ I get from the car at the lights. I nod, wink and smile. How good.


  94. @TruckerSlim

    A pat on the back, hugs, his wild eyed grin that doesn’t really know what it’s saying other than what a kick, we’re still in this, then the settling nod from a team elder. The heart sees what the clatter misses. Like a pat on the back.


  95. Have you ever washed your wife’s best silk dress on the 60 minute cycle with your work clothes? Then Willie Rioli’d it in the back of the wardrobe hoping it won’t get found until after finals and the moths get to it? Asking for a friend. #almanac280

  96. Kim Crawford says


    The current Final 8
    I think is great
    Because I’m the one who devised it
    But the AFL
    Have said ”go to hell
    We will never recognise it!”

    True story, needs to be told.
    Every other Finals System in AFL history is named after the person who created it.
    Why not this one?


  97. @e_regnans

    Skull Callaghan eases down the drive; shuts the driver’s window.
    Selection night had run late.
    His dog Bluey steps over moonlit posts, wire; this job on tomorrow’s doorstep.
    Skull looks at the stars. Unexpected finals. “Tremendous,” he says.

  98. Jump Williams says

    ?Father and son, a Swan and a Don. Son defected as a boy, too young to know the meaning, father too reserved to teach him. Together for 96 prelim – Plugger and the point – and yet apart. Father and son in different jumpers, shared red is blood but then black and white #almanac280?

  99. @swishtter

    Monday 8:55am

    Five tabs open on the desktop.

    Two phones logged in.

    Half a dozen dry runs on the weekend.

    Won’t get any work done this morning. If we win, what will I have to go through for Grand Final tickets?

    Seats are halfway to Punt Road, but I’m in.


  100. @e_regnans

    Pretty chuffed to receive the nod.
    I’m carried along the hall.
    Past players, kids and Mr Plod.
    I am the Grand Final ball.
    They’ll whack me and punch and kick me.
    And I’ll spin against the sun.
    Til tired and desperate-ly
    The game is lost and won.


  101. @diogenesbrown

    “Listen up! Yesterday, the A’s won their 1st flag in 25 years – players are still on the roof celebrating. 5 years ago a number of them sat right here – juniors having a go. That’s our club & is what we want for you!”

    A raucous cheer filters through the zincalume


  102. @e_regnans




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