What really happens at the Brownlow

Everyone knows all the really good stuff happens in the chick’s toilet Brownlow night at Crown.

The crying, the hugging, the snorting, the cheering.  The sexing, the texting, the fighting and the vomiting.  Outside is the world of cameras and waiters, journalists and Andrew.  Inside it’s all Brynne and pouting and hair pouffing and hysteria spouting.

Did you see her ring – it was the same one he gave the other girl.  Did you catch that dress?  I was like, really.  I was with him two weeks ago and he just looked straight through me.  I’m drunk.  I’m pregnant.  They said it was an original but I saw Charlene wearing it on Chapel.  Can I be drunk and pregnant?  Just coconut water for eleven days.  He said I should drive.  What do you mean, I have to give them back?  He said I didn’t have to talk to Ricky.  I said to him, I said.  Why’d they serve parsley with the mains?  A roomful of people covering their mouths whenever a camera pans past.  How huge is she?  I’m sure it’s light beer.  An infant clothing range featuring push-up bras.  What colour is that?  He told me it was fizzy water.  I can’t hide my back-chub in this shawl.  She said they bought in Toorak.  What d’ya reckon?  Is he or isn’t he?  He won’t be next year. 

An overly-perfumed overly-heated overly-involved gaggle of women in various stages of dress, sobriety and civility.  From the mothers to the lovers a conglomeration of disparate femininity piddling and fiddling in noisy rushed choreography.  Hand driers blasting – boosting hair at the roots, drying the scrubbed red wine off the flouro pink shift, baking five layers of lip gloss onto pillowy plumped lips – basically, doing anything but drying hands.   Trying to get in and out in a commercial break.  Trying to avoid that mole because, well, you know, she’s the one.  Which one?  Ohhh.  Yeh.  That one.

You sign up for it when you hook up with a footy bloke.  Or when you hook one of the executives.  Or when you’re a hooker with a Sainter.  No!  Who said that??  Oh, that slapper with whatshisface from Carlton.

Nobody likes the in form and informed girl on the arm of the club’s captain but so long as her dress doesn’t actually split walking up the stairs nobody will overtly bitch about her.  That’s not to say they don’t want to but there’s a basic problem.  It’s a closed shop.  Everyone knows everyone’s body, form guide, priors, convictions, dirty secrets and lip-gloss priorities.  There are orders of cloistered nuns who don’t know as much about each other as these girls.  Forget politicians and priests; the real action is found on these girls phones.  They’ve got the photos, the texts, the bank statements and the calling history.  These girls ain’t no amateur players.  Spear-fishing may be a close approximation.  Unionised spear-fishing with AK-47s would be closer still.

And they don’t throw away.  No matter how flushed, no matter how bored.  Not even if it’s Brock McLean.  Turning a blind eye, shoulder, insides out or whatever’s needed to ensure once the entrée is gained, the door doesn’t slam shut on you.  And they could.  Those other bitches.  They totes could get you out.  All it would take would be a raised plucked eyebrow and a wink of a false eyelash to have you back on the turntable at Manhattan Nightclub in the twinkling of a blue contact lens.

The toilet is heaving.  It’s like party central in there.  The contrast to the forcibly muted business-like ‘celebration’ in the big room is marked.  The Brownlow has more in common with a stock auction than one might think.  Players’ prices and contracts rise, and fall, on the call of the auctioneer/CEO.   Jobe is the blue-chip, safe stock pinned under the unwavering glare of an immobile camera lens.  One gets the feeling the director’s finger hovers nervously over the big red “cut-away-from-the-Tigers-table-immediately-button”.   Markets and websites crash off the back of those crownie towers.  In Crown Towers.  Whether it’s playing form or player form, or even gormless ex-player form, the market is kept well-informed.

But still not as knowledgeable as cubicle 7.  Bruce should really pop in there one night.  That’d pep up the call.  “And Tomahawk becomes the 57th Geelong player to be given the seventh third round tick since records began in the Tudor Era.  And we all know about his sausages don’t we.  Don’t we?”

It can only be a matter of time.  But remember, when Channel 7 introduce “Powder-Room-Puff-Cam”, you read it here first.


  1. Brilliant piece of satire…or is it?

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