Saturday, May 05, 2012

Goalposts for jumpers

You've got to feel sorry for them… Back in the old days, F.A. Cup day was a bit of an event. It was the last part of the Spring triptych of sport, following on from the boat race and the Grand National. Back then, telly didn't even start until after Ed Stewpot Stewart had put his socks back on and was wending his weary way away from Junior Choice and we'd all finished reading that week's editions of "The Tiger" and "The Rover" and had stopped being giddy about Splash Gorton's penguin. After dinner we'd settle down quietly — or else! — and on would come the telly. Whether it was Grandstand or World of Sport that year the festival would always start with somebody baking cakes in the team colours and an interview with a dolly bird. Then there'd be a celebrity quiz or It's A Knockout or both and there'd be a quick cut-away to see the teams in blazers getting on the coach. By three o'clock we'd have exhausted Ralph Reader leading the community singing so they'd put on a game of football to give us all a rest.