I was sheltering under Perry Hall bridge yesterday with the dogs as it has started to fucking pelt it down. Me and Gaz Mastic who has appeared out of no where his little legs flapping and his little Staffy ‘Mucky’ dragging him along in a rush for shelter. Where has the sun gone? It’s a bit cold. I came out in a t-shirt which is now sticking to my back. I scrounge a roll up off Gaz. He smokes ‘Drum’ loves it. His baccy is dry unlike us. His rizlas are a bit damp as I try to take out one and pull twenty out. Bollocks.
‘Shouldn’t have sold him Mikey…he did us a great job last season’ Gaz says. I like listening to him. He’s got that Willenhall Black Country twang going on. Of course I think that perhaps Gaz might have a point or not, I don’t know. It’s hard to roll a fag with two Staffys trying to pull you in half so then can lick a piss covered nettle fragment. Barry Douglas. You would think he would buy some new jeans with the money he earns. Look. His fucking knees are hanging out of them!
Opinions are great, I love them. I love it when people talk to me about my team and discuss the whys and wherefores of the tactics, team sheet, management. Everything. I disagree with most of what I hear but that is also good. You see it’s all information, all data. I have lost count of the times people have said something to me about the team that has made me re-evaluate what my thoughts were. A prime example is Dave Edwards. I was a total fan boy. I loved singing his song at Molineux. I loved everything about Dave…until somebody sat down next to me and dis-assembled his method of playing football. This dude took Dave Edwards apart succinctly and academically. This fella knew more about football than me and it was great to listen to him. I took all of what he said on-board and watched the next weeks match with everything he had told me ‘on-board’.
Fuck. He was right. Dave Edwards did point a lot. Then Dave went to Reading. Bye Dave. Gaz is muttering about beer, then a Midfielder, then a Striker, then a left back or something. He wants all these positions filled in our team. I just nod and try to keep the roll up from curling up like a forest fire. This baccy is dry and stengy. On social media the fume is real. Threats and counter threats, madness and crazy shit. People losing their shit. People saying shit. It’s shit. Not fun and not informative. But it is what it is. It is pure 2017 shizz. Same stuff as what we read last year. We lose at Derby in a friendly. Jesus Christ we are doomed. The tendrils of fear that roll through our stomachs when a bit of a bobbly road comes up. We are assembling a team that can challenge for the top half of the Premier league. We are two weeks away from our peak. Physically at least. Mentally who knows?
‘Am I a Superfan Gaz?’ Gaz chuckles…’I wish ya was I’d stand you in the corner of the bedroom’. I laugh but I don’t get it for a few seconds. A shoal of Roach swim past us as the dogs smell patches of historical piss under the bridge. A dude runs past in full running gear, he’s running fast like he’s trying to escape something. He doesn’t look like he’s enjoying himself.
Sometimes I don’t enjoy Social Media. It can be full of Vampires you see. Especially when you interact with any of them. They can suck all the joy out of your day in seconds with a few choice words. Sheila from Wordsley or Liam from Penkridge, a dichotomy if ever there was one. Two sides of the same coin really. One laments as he gobbles can after can of Monster while he plays Football Manager or twiddles with his fantasy football team. The other tweeting as she drives herself or the kids around swerving in and out of traffic. One peels off the pepperoni stuck on his tshirt which is stretched over his fat gut. The other channels her menopause angst at slights on Barry Douglas’s character…she will never forget that time she flicked her bean over Baz in his Stoney as she digested a bottle of Lambrini. Our Monster drinker checks Sheilas entire social media history for an angle he can get at her. Vampires mate.
This two weeks before the season starts is No-Mans-Land mate. What is a Superfan? It’s somebody who has nothing in their lives apart from Wolves. So everything is amplified, everything is LOUD, every subtle twitch of a finger on a screen is a fucking declaration of war. We lose our minds over a rumour of Douglas and Nuno falling out with each other. We extrapolate our bitter and twisted simple existence onto those we support and look to for support. We lose our minds that we haven’t got anybody in the club in the positions we want filled. We want, and we are often disappointed. They don’t have his size of shirt in the club shop and for fucks sake he’s going on holiday Monday. It’s a ‘fallacy’ and a ‘fucking disgrace’ that he can’t get his kids the new fucking shirt. I haven’t been able to spunk fifty quid on a shirt for years mate. I signed a few books behind the North Bank a few weeks ago. A fella came out of the club shop with five carrier bags worth of Wolves stuff. ‘I’ve just blown £600 in there’ he says to his kid who was a bit slow catching up as they walked to their car. The kid looks bored. Dad gets in the car and I watch him fingering his buys as his kid looks out of the window at me signing books. Best Wishes. Petalengro. My match day expenditure will be a Coffee somewhere before the match…in fact I know the place well. A coffee machine. A mug of Latte something. £2.10p. I used to teach the girl who owns the place. She will put me a chewy cookie on my plate for free as I used to give her the odd roll-up at break time because ‘Mikey if I dow have a fag at break I’m gonna fucking lose it’.
Trust in Nuno? Fuck off. Nuno is a giant among us, philosophically and footballing wise but does that leave him untouchable? Of course it doesn’t. Fosun are the same, a great business that dwarfs anything we have seen before. Must we bow down and tug our forelocks to our Chinese Overseers? Nah mate, not a chance. When you stop debate and exchanging ideas then the force that the whole crazy train has just grinds to a halt. Do I trust Nuno? Fuck yes. Who am I to challenge his thoughts? I am untangling dog leads and trying to peel a Rizla off a stuck together mass of skins. I’m fucking useless, I don’t know why anybody listens to me at all. Do I trust Fosun? Of course I do…there isn’t any intellectual basis for me to challenge their ideas…yet.
Monster gobbling Liam says that Douglas doesn’t defend as well as most Premier league players in similar positions. He posts a graph. It’s interesting and correct. Douglas lack the ability to attack a player running towards him. His covering play isn’t brilliant. Sheila says that she feels that John Ruddy has been unfairly treated what with the Ikeme news and Patricio coming in under a cacophonous thunder of bean flicking joy. I tend to agree Sheila. So the whole pantomime grinds on like some incredibly fucked up Punch and Judy show. Yes he did! No he didn’t! Yes he did!
But we can we subtly point out some areas that are concern to us? Of course we can. As a club and as supporters we can discuss what’s going on up at Molineux towers whether it’s negative worry-wort bollocks, angry ranting or sublime dismantling of the whole train ride. Because that’s how we make our ideas stronger. By talking and debating things that may seem uncomfortable to our cosy existence at the present time. I remember reading one of those quote sites where some doughnut said ‘Tea women and Busboys always have the greatest ideas’. Who ever said it was right of course. So Liam from Penkridge who jerks off over Brazilian fart porn might have a bloody good point. Sheila from Wordsley might also have one tucked among the Donald Trump memes she loves.
Gaz is talking about his love of fishing as we watch the Roach swim past. I wax a little about the woodcarving I’m doing and we spend ten minutes waxing while the rain blows over and then we part. His little legs flapping, my weird limp. I think maybe these fractured online personalities may have some point in all their invective but I don’t know what it is yet. I’m not looking at them. I’m watching those bastards we are going to play this season. I’m watching their fans closely for propaganda. I’m watching the Media Giants mate, waiting. It’s pointless arguing with those around you when there is a bigger enemy waiting for us.
Football is the craziest fucking thing isn’t it?