Memo Blues: Win, and kill off the new anti-Ratts swarm NOW

On The Gruen Transfer last night Russell Howcroft said ‘all advertising works, just some works better’. I feel the same about talk-back radio and ‘comment’ facilities on news sites: it’s all at least somewhat annoying. And football talk-back is generally more than ‘somewhat’.

Cicadas are responsible for that God-awful racket you hear in the summer, at dusk after a hot day. In other words, they thrive when there’s not much light and too much hot air.  Take away their ability to generate noise and they are absolutely insignificant.  Which makes them a prefect simile for the talkback crowd.

Some kinds of caller can be identified with particular clubs. Collingwood fans, win lose or draw, are full of conspiracy theories and the ‘anti-Collingwood bias’, and inability to give due credit, of any outlet treating them with less obsequious reverence than the Herald-Sun or the Footy Show. They often use ‘bias’ as an adjective.  When Richmond win, their fans call in and bleat about ‘respect’. When they lose narrowly, they ring and whinge about the umpires (fair point, all clubs have them). When they get thrashed, they threaten all kinds of retribution on their membership tickets.  (There has not been a confirmed instance of an angry Tiger fan destroying their members ticket and NOT grandstanding in the media about it since reliable records started being kept in the late 1940s.)

But just in case anybody’s thinking I’m letting my mob off lightly on this, forget it. Carlton’s own strain of cicada is moving up the nuisance ladder as steadily as its football team have climbed the AFL ladder lately, and yield to no-one for ignorant, sanctimonious, entitlement-addled whinging and mob-think: the dreaded RattSackPack, lately resurgent after three losses in four weeks.

This crowd want Ratten out for, dunno, who’s available? Malthouse maybe, or Roos. Maybe if we dangled a big enough carrot under Leigh Matthews nose, no harm trying, surely? Actually, yes there is. Four words: Malcolm Blight, Saint Kilda. (Not that Carlton ever fell for the trap of appointing a name as coach, and if they ever did do something so stupid it would not have been just 15 months after the Blight fiasco ran its course, would it Denis?)

For a start, the Noise needs to make up its mind who it wants. If, say, Malthouse is its first choice, Roos would be a very unlikely second preference, and vice versa. Mick built Collingwood from the ground up and judiciously added ‘ready made players’; Paul made a premiership team from getting great value out of ‘recycled’ talent. Their media profiles could not be more different. Malthouse is a football generation older than Roos. Assuming (and I’ll edit out the ‘perhaps unsoundly’ for now) that the cicadas’ Master Plan has developed past ‘Step 1: Replace coach with Marquee Name’, what sort of team do they want? What deficiencies, exactly, does the team have and how best can they be rectified? What about recruiting, injury management, player development, game plan, player positioning, use of the bench and the sub rule, et cetera, et cetera? Sorry fellas, ‘it can’t possibly be any worse’ just doesn’t cut it, not any more. Press-ganging a loyal servant of the club, who has done by any reasonable measure a good job, onto the street to make room for an aging ‘name’ with doubtful motivation, might work wonders for your own sense of empowerment but that does not make the Top 1000 of considerations for the rest of the Carlton supporting community.

A win over Essendon tomorrow night would be as welcome as a summer evening cool change – or the development of a new kind of pest spray for outdoor use. At least it would shut up the cicadas.


  1. John Butler says

    Amen brother Rick!

    Maybe the RSP could combine with the BringBackFev faction (probably a high level of overlap) and all of them could take a long walk of a very short pier.

  2. Summer breeze, makes me feel fine….

  3. John Butler says

    Mission accomplished. :)

  4. forwardpocket says

    Heavy wound to the RSP, but I suspect there’s life in them yet. Miss top 4? fail to win a final? They’ll be back!

  5. John Butler says

    You’re probably right FP.

    Some people really don’t like to be wrong.

  6. I was firmly in the sack John Barker camp before last night. I’ve now stepped away from the ledge, but am still sitting on the window sill.

  7. The Chief Cicada – ‘Simon from Ascot Vale’ – was in career-best form on Grandstand about 25 seconds after the show intro this afternoon. This bloke always sounds nearly as smug as Coodabeens caller ‘Nigel from North Fitzroy’, and I swear Icould hear him thumping the table as he ranted, ad whatever comes after nauseum, about his favorite coach for what seemed like ten minutes.

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