Dad Jokes, Geelong Cats and Footy Talk

Dedicated to My Dad “Pav”

Define ‘Dad’:

The most embarrassing person you’ll ever know. Enjoys telling ‘Dad jokes’ and dancing in public. Likes to annoy you and your friends. Is always around.

But I couldn’t ask for a Dad better than my footy loving mad Dad Nic.

My dad had brought me up into the blue and white scene that is the Geelong Cats. From the day I was born, to now, I have been with my dad to hundreds of footy games.

I went to my first AFL game when I was 4 months old. It was in 2001, the Cats v Hawks game, where the Cats won by 3 points. My Dad was overjoyed with the win, but probably more excited that he got to bring me along.

Since my first game at 4 months, I literally haven’t stopped going to the footy with Dad. We’ve been to Geelong and back, to the ‘G, to Etihad and even to the Gold Coast!

I remember when I was 6; I would talk to my Dad about stats and clearances and hard ball gets. He was blown away by my knowledge, but I think he was secretly proud that he’d taught me this himself.

 Another thing my dad has taught me about is tradition. It’s actually a big thing in my family, especially when it comes to footy.

When we drive down to Geelong, we always listen to old footy songs. ALWAYS.

We must get Hungry Jacks on the way home from the footy. MUST.

And even if this is stupid, dad has to roll up my flag after every game. HE JUST HAS TO.

Traditions like these have started because of my Dad.

There is one special thing I share with my Dad. Something that my mum calls “footy talk”. It’s our footy language. Whenever the footy is on, we talk a language only we can understand. We talk about history and stats and our best footy memories. We don’t really plan it; it just comes out like we know everything there is to know about AFL.

But there’s something that is always mentioned in the Pavlou household, apart from the footy. That’s Dad jokes. My Dad tells the most cringe-worthy dad jokes of all time, and has been telling them for the past 13 years.

Here are some examples:

“What do you call a guy with no legs? Kneel” (Dad laughs hysterically)


‘Dad brings out box of shapes’ “Hey look, I’m shape shifting!” (Dad continues to laugh hysterically.

But apart from all the embarrassing moments and annoying dad jokes, my Dad has taught me to be myself. He’s shown me that we all should be grateful for everything we have. He’s been there to support me my whole life. And he’s taught me to be a footy fanatic. And I couldn’t be happier with that.jun

By Anna Pavlou, 13 years old

About Anna Pavlou

Anna 'Pav' Pavlou is a current student and a born and bred Melburnian who has a passion for sport and sharing people's stories. She is an intern journalist for AFL VICTORIA and writes for The Roar, the Victorian Amateur Football Association (VAFA Media), the Mongrel Punt and is a Melbourne Cricket Club contributor. She also appears on North West FM 98.9 radio show. Most winter weekends you'll find her down at the Ross Gregory Oval in St Kilda, supporting Power House FC, who play in Division 2 in the VAFA. She works as the Division 2 writer for the VAFA. She completed work experience with 3AW Radio and has been published in The Age as well as with Carlton FC and Geelong Cats. Check out her website below for more sport pieces!


  1. Nice work Anna. What a time to grow up as a Cats supporter.

  2. Brilliant Anna. I think your Dad is hilarious.

    There’s a bloke standing in a cemetery and another bloke comes up to him and says “Do you dig graves?”

    The first bloke answers, “Yeah they’re alright.”

    boom boom

  3. Anna

    Lovely piece of writing. I think your dad’s jokes are brilliant too

    Well done, traditions in family and football are important.


  4. That’s a fantastic story Anna. I love hearing about how people enjoy their footy (and their Dad). Thanks very much. Look forward to your next piece.

  5. Thank you Anna for sharing your lovely story–what a great foundation for you!
    -Carn the Cats!

  6. Anna, I remember that game clearly. You were only 4 months old and you were transfixed at the sights, colours and the (loud) sounds of AFL footy.

    It was at Etihad (Telstra? Colonial?) under the roof on a Saturday afternoon. I still have a great pic of you there that day.

    “Rocking” Ronnie Burns kicked 4 (including the winner) while Riccardi booted a couple. We got up by 3 points.

    Playing in that game were future superstars Enright, Chapman, Scarlett, Harley, Ling and my all time favorite Darren Milburn. Also playing that day were Mitchell White, Adam Houlihan, Glen Kilpatrick, Clint Bizzell and Kent Kingsley.

    Your ears pricked up and I saw a spark in your eye when they played the Cats theme song after the siren…I KNEW that was the day you fell in love with the Cats.

    I remember it like it was yesterday…

    You have lived through one of the greatest periods of success of any team in the history of the game. I know you appreciate it all.

    Nic (Anna’s Actual Dad!)

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