Hot Chocolate and Cold Bombers

Recently, three year 11’s and myself started a business. It was called Choc&Chops, we sold hot chocolate and hot chips to the rest of the school at lunchtime (the ‘chops’ is a dig at the New Zealand accent). This was THE assessment task for Business Management unit 1. The four of us had to venture to the local supermarket during our free and, with $50 in hand, buy our products, which included eight bags of frozen chips, two gigantic Cadbury hot chocolate canisters, three bottles of chicken salt, two 300mL bottles of milk, 60 foam cups, 50 paper bags and a big bag of sugar. The weird looks we got off onlookers as we passed through the register is hard to explain, but you get the idea with that amount of food and accessories from a bunch of 16 year olds in school uniform. How we managed to get all that stuff back to the school, a good kilometre away, is still beyond me. The next day (Thursday), our business was running on its own two legs. The school was very eager to find out what Choc&Chops was due to the amount of posters we left around the yard and in classrooms, advertising our business. With half an hour to go until lunch time, the four of us started to cook our chips and make our hot chocolates. I prepared 50 rows of cups and put two teaspoons of chocolate and sugar in each, while the others put the chips onto trays and into the ovens. “Plenty of time,” I said.

When lunch time came around, we had a large queue waiting in anticipation. As it would happen, the hot chocolates were cold and the chips were still raw in the middle. Massive fail. We reduced the prices to a dollar each, then 50c, then 30c. Still we didn’t sell much. Amazingly, we made a profit of $23.95. We used half a bottle of milk, half a canister of hot chocolate, half a bag of sugar, and one bottle of chicken salt. Luckily, a few teachers said they would buy the extra bottles of milk and chicken salt, which will boost our profit. And, to add insult to injury, the only two teachers we served on the day missed school the next day. I hope it was just a coincidence.

So, due to our Bus.Man and Legal Studies teacher being away, we had Mr Shaw, a substitute for the last two classes of the day, a Friday. It is fair to say he had no idea. I made plenty of “Are you shaw?” jokes, and we were let out of school early after we convinced him that the bell went at 3:00 instead of 3:22. The week was finally over. All business pains aside, the footy was back.

This was an intriguing game. Essendon, who I have to admit having a soft spot for, against Melbourne, a team with their backs firmly planted against the proverbial wall. I like the Bombers because they have exciting youngsters and good leaders. David Myers, Travis Colyer, Tom Bellchambers and Stewart Crameri to name some of their young talent, while Jobe Watson is easily my favourite player outside of North Melbourne. Without Watson though, sidelined with a hamstring injury, they lack leadership. Dustin Fletcher is old enough to be Dyson Heppell’s father, but he can’t lead the forward line or midfield. Melbourne do have leaders. Brad Green is the obvious one, but Brent Moloney and Jared Rivers would make fine captains. I expect Essendon to win in a romp, but I am looking forward to watching some of the Demons’ ‘no name’ players perform, such as Nicholson, Evans, Gawn and Howe.

Two of Melbourne’s leaders kick the opening goals, skipper Green marking on the lead after some good link-up play through the midfield by Tom Scully and Jordan Gysberts. Green converted, before Colin Sylvia took a terrific mark wedged between two Bombers in the goalsquare and he capped it off with a major. Jake Melksham snapped a ripper after wrong-footing a Melbourne defender, but Jack Watts hit back with a strong grab and goal against Kyle Hardingham. Brent Stanton marked out in space and converted, but he was still booed by the Essendon faithful, but they were cheering when Hardingham roosted a long ball through the big sticks from 50m out on the run to give Essendon the lead going into quarter time.

The lead was quickly stretched to eight points at the restart thanks to Ben Howlett’s goal on the run from outside 50, but Melbourne answered with a terrific snap off one foot by Green from tight on the boundary line. Paddy Ryder marked outside 50 and, ignoring Bellchambers, booted a long major to stretch the margin to 10 points. Watts received a free kick after Cale Hooker pushed him out of the contest in the goalsquare, Liam Jurrah taking advantage of the loose ball and slamming it through. The Bombers finished the quarter on a high note though, with Ryder finding himself all alone inside 50 chasing the ball. It took a bounce only a Sherrin could, straight over his head into James Strauss’ hands. Ryder dispossessed him, earning a free kick which he converted from the boundary line. Essendon held a seven point lead at the main break.

I got up to have some late-night tea, mums cheese and tomato risotto. It was delicious. The second half started while I was washing up, and I got back in my room just in time to see Tom Scully mark inside 50 and kick a goal to draw scores level. If there is such a thing as Team Goal of the Year, the next play would be the duly winners. With the ball at half back, Melbourne worked it through the wing to half forward with deft handballs through the likes of Howe, Scully and Green, ending in a Jack Trengove mark, who played on, handballed to Moloney in the goalsquare and he put an emphatic exclamation mark on a terrific goal. Howe got involved again, his pass was beautifull weighted to Green, who marked, played on, slipped over and still managed to goal, then it was Neville Jetta’s turn to convert a set shot which took the margin out to 17 points. Essendon were shellshocked. Jurrah skirted a pack in the goalsquare and kicked his second, before Howe snapped a beauty to cap off one of the best quarters of footy for the year. Essendon kicked one behind, Melbourne booted 6.2.

I still wanted Essendon to win, mainly because I wanted a close contest. It looked like it was happening, with David Hille and Angus Monfries kicking early goals to reduce the margin to 21 points. David Zaharakis converted on the run from the next clearance, and the Bombers looked the goods. Green booted his fourth with a massive swing at the ball out of mid air in the goalsquare, the play would’ve had Manchester United looking on in envy. Crameri, who missed two important shots at goal earlier, marked and converted, and the margin was 14 points with five minutes remaining. Gawn took a strong mark, 10m out, but almost kicked it out on the full Robbie Warnock style. Melbourne sealed the game with Jurrah booting his third from 45m out on a tight angle, before Jetta received from a clever Jamie Bennell handball that gifted him an open goal. Dean Bailey made his way to the interchange bench, grinning and fist-pumping furiously. From the next clearance, Moloney gathered on the wing, took three bounces and booted long towards goal. Thousands of Melbourne fans, who had endured a horror three weeks, all stood as one as they watched the footy sail through from outside 50. A fitting finish for a club on their knees.

Bailey embraced with Green on the wing, a loving hug. Has there been a better relationship between coach and captain? Essendon missed Jobe Watson dearly, their leaders didn’t stand up, while the likes of Green, Moloney, Rivers and McKenzie stood tall and walked off the MCG with their heads held high. All of them would be handy in the Choc&Chops business. I wonder how much the going rate is…

Essendon 3.2—6.5—6.6—10.8.68
Melbourne 3.0—5.4—11.6—15.11.101


Essendon-Ryder 2, Zaharakis, Crameri, Melksham, Stanton, Howlett, Hille, Monfries, Hardingham

Melbourne-Green 4, Jurrah 3, Moloney 2, Jetta 2, Sylvia, Watts, Howe, Scully


Essendon-Stanton, Lonergan, Melksham, Hibberd, Howlett

Melbourne-Moloney, McKenzie, Trengove, Watts, Gysberts, Green, Martin, Jones


53.077 at the MCG


3: Brent Moloney (M)
2: Jordie McKenzie (M)
1: Jack Trengove (M)

About Josh Barnstable

21 year old North Melbourne supporter from country Victoria. Currently living in Melbourne studying a Bachelor of Sports Media. Dreams of becoming a sports journalist and broadcaster.


  1. John Butler says

    Nice work Josh

    I’m glad you gave McKenzie votes. Even though Judd and Murphy beat him last week, he worked his backside off. This week he was even better.

  2. johnharms says

    Josh, Nice to see the small business project is alive and well in schools. Should have lured them with the promise of a Footy Almanac or two. Aker famusly won the small business studies prize at Nudgee College in Brisbane by charging entry to his stand-up comedy routine.

    Not sure about the Dees. Two weeks in a row they have (literally) put me to sleep.

  3. johnharms says

    Or was it Carlton and Essendon who put me to sleep.

  4. Alovesupreme says

    When Green volleyed his goal, my thoughts were similar to yours. Did you know that he apparently trialled with Man. Utd. as a teenage? The skills he demonstrated in that moment remind us that he was a very good junior soccer player.

  5. Danielle says

    Joshy, JTH is right about the use of Almanacs.
    Just last week i sat on the floor having a flick through last years edition- when a guy came, sat opposite me, started conversation, invited me to sit with in during the lecture and shortly after gave me his number. ;)
    Ahh the power of The Footy Almanac.

  6. Peter Flynn says

    Deep Fried Mars Bars are the go Josh!

  7. Steve Healy says

    Fantastic game, it was a thrill to be at the G, especially next to the cheersquad.

    I reckon we’ll beat the Pies

  8. Pamela Sherpa says

    Hilarious reading about your business venture Josh- and the early mark stuff- I work as a relief teacher in Canberra – had to take kids for footy the other day- It was great . The staff said “Are you sure you can manage ‘ I said , ” No worries”

    I found it hard to stay awake on Friday night even though my team was playing .it doesn’t start til 8 30 up here and that last hour is a killer after a tiring week of teaching kids!!!!.

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