In life we have some wonderful experiences that can be fleeting or last forever as in a marriage.

My marriage to theGeelongfootball Club has lasted for well over 60 years. My other marriages in total have been over 50 years but still no telegram from BettyWindsor.


Let me tell you about my last four days of my long marriage.

It started on Friday morning on the local ABC station in Mildura when I was to go head-to head with a Collingwood fan.  As it turned out Julie was too nice, not a trait that I would confirm on any Collingwood supporter.  She even wished my team all the best.  I tried my darndest but she would not catch the bait that I threw out every few seconds. Darn it! I had worked myself up to a frenzy to match the evil from down near the sewerage farm in Fitzroy town.  Carringbush will never be the same.  First score to them

Lunch time saw the cats come out flying and what a delight it was.  Obviously one man decision making is the ideal and the guest speakers at the Almanackers luncheon included the mother of Tom Hawkins, the mother of Andrew Mackie (boy, could she bring down the house of cards), Gareth Andrews ( 136 games , 127 goals) and ABC sports caster supreme Roger Wills (long time Catman). What a treat to catters such as myself.  Cats take the points.

Saturday morning 2.20am I find a new place to park the car.   Line up with the rest of the “G” members who missed out on the ballot. Sat on a stool for 5 hours with umbrellas shading all of us. Find they are mostly going forGeelong. Collingwood is a matter of love or hate no shades of grey, not even on their away strip. Cats take the points again.


Afternoon Meatloaf appears and Amerosi murders our anthem..  Who cares about ancient American has-beens?  We have a lot to learn from the NRL whose anthems fromNew ZealandandAustraliawere superb.. No points to either side and AFL minus 100.

Grandson wins the sprint at half time and says the cats will win .  Can’t get on even though our crew had a fistful of dollars.  Didn’t know he was running until five minutes before the race.

2.30pm onwards.  One of the best GF’s I have witnessed since the early fifties.  Not often teams go goal for goal.  Pods goes down and I say to mate “Hawkins will have to play the game of his life”.  His mother had given me hope the day before.  Tomahawk delivers.

Always confident that the boys would do it. Hardly a passenger.  Jimmy played like Ben Chifley, typically blue collar at its best.  Trav did a great impersonation of Bunji Macleod.  Tommy played like Ebenezer scrooge in the back half after Cloke had cut loose.  Lingy made other redheads look insignificant and is a natural for Kirribilli.

A great team performance.          Cats the points and the flag.

I walk through the Fitzroy gardens with Father Kevin Dillon fromGeelongand he looks at his watch.  “The church bells should be peeling out the theme song “he says.

“What is your sermon for tomorrow?” I reply.  He ponders my question for a moment. “I haven’t started on it yet but I think aGeelongtheme would be appropriate” he says with a wry grin.

We are walking on water.

Early to bed.  It is a long drive home to Mildura.  Forget that daylight saving starts and I am behind time.  Leave around mid day with the dulcet tones of anotherGeelongman in Gerard Whately carrying me home. Crosses over toKardiniaPark. Players interviewed (I think).

2pm the replay commences and I live the dream for another 2 hours. The kilometres disappear.  Full points to the ABC


Monday morning and another radio interview.  This time a wrap up of the game. The Collingwood supporter is charming again!  She must take some lessons from Eddie andCo.I have the last say and the theme song carries me out of the studio.

In the words of the AFL sponsor – oh what a feeling.

Must conclude, the television replay is about to commence.


About Bob Utber

At 80 years of age Citrus Bob is doing what he wanted to do as a 14 year-old living on the farm at Lang Lang. Talking, writing, watching sport. Now into his third book on sports history he lives in Mildura with his very considerate wife (Jenny ) and a groodle named "Chloe On Flinders". How good is that.


  1. The GFC must be a bigamist Bob.

  2. Joann Mackie says

    It was great to meet you Bob. Might see you at a Cats v Crows game sometime. Meanwhile,like all other Cats supporters, even johnny-come-latelies like me can bathe in the glory for a little while longer.

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