Wild Al’s Jan Plan – Part Four– A Change for Norris?
Legendary hedonist, and erstwhile King of Cario’s nightclub, Wild Al is doing his bit for Town’s tumbling fortunes by eschewing ‘Dry January’ for the 27th year running.
While others are dabbling in a New Year detox to pile off the pounds, Al has hit the pub to draw up a five-point plan of action to help Tim Sherwood pile on the points.
Over the days he’s been drip-feeding us his scheme to save Swindon’s season, today in the final part …
4. Pump in the Railway Works Hooter to the CG. Ditto the Venga Boys
I am nothing if not a fickle man, for instance the other night I spent a good 45 minutes chatting up a girl – tales of blogs in The Washbag and being on tweeting terms with Vic Morgan make incredible ice breakers– only to, belatedly realise, she was wearing an engagement ring.
Yes, I should have checked earlier but things were quite blurry by this point I did what any true gent would do and immediately turned my amorous attentions to her significantly less attractive friend, who I’d, naturally, spent the previous three quarters of an hour studiously ignoring. Turns out that was who she was engaged to. So I went home alone. Again. But that’s not the point.
As the above demonstrates.
1- I’m still on the market, ladies.
2- I’m an adaptable man
I mention this, because initially this blog was going to be all about Luke Norris. Specifically, how Tim Sherwood should pack him in the back of his car, along with a judiciously highlighted copy of the 1979 Sale Of Goods act, before flooring it to Priestfield to confront that scallywag Paul Scally thusly – “Alright fella, we all like a LOL, but where’s the striker Lee paid for?”.
However, Norris’s impressive display, not least setting up Ben Gladwin’s equaliser, against Bolton on Saturday made the above seem churlish, so my thoughts turned elsewhere. Specifically, they turned to casual violence enablers, home for disaffected Frenchmen and occasional football club, West Ham United.
The claret and blue cockneys have recently moved home and, you don’t have to have a Trevor Brooking like devotion to the Hammers to know this hasn’t gone well. Incidentally apparently Sir Trevor once scored the winner in the FA Cup final, with his head no less, which, in fact, he didn’t used to get many with. I only bring this up because Trev doesn’t like to mention it.
I’m not judging West Ham fans for the chronic lack of atmosphere in their new stadium, after all, if their current head honcho’s dad, Terry Brady, had got his way back in the day, and shifted Town away from the County Ground to the side of the M4, the paucity of pubs alone would have been a real buzz killer.
As, I imagine, is being miles from the pitch. At the Boleyn, the fans were packed in, close to the action, creating a boisterous East End atmosphere akin to the famous time Bobby Moore, the Queen Mum and the Kray twins defiantly scoffed jellied eels and had a ‘Knees up’ at ‘The Old Joanna’ in the dugout, as the Blitz bombs fell around them. I’m pretty sure that’s what happened.
Anyway, to counter act the lack of noise, West Ham have, allegedly, starting piping in artificial crowd noise during games at their new ground. Cue much merriment and ribbing all round.
Like everyone I think this was a huge error, but only because of what they chose to pipe in, rather than the actual act of piping. Crowd noise is as pretty unimaginative choice, especially when you have an actual crowd already in situ. That’s like buying a sex robot* and then only getting it to give you a hand job.
What West Ham should have done, and what I propose Town do, is loudly play other sounds over the PA, during the match, at randomly picked points.
So suddenly you’d hear, say, the call of the old railway works hooter or the glorious, immortal, thud of the post as Craig Maskell scores ‘in-off’ at Wembley in 1993. Or, and here’s one we can all get behind, the back catalogue of perennial pop favourites the Vengaboys.**
It will raise the noise, rally the crowd, and freak out the opposition, but, crucially, not our own players, will quickly become desensitised to the aleatory aural outpourings.
I’m pretty sure there is no actual rule preventing this, and even if we do fall foul of some obscure edict, surely the footballing authorities owe us one free pass, after 1990 and their draconian sanctions for, what I think were officially dubbed, Town’s ‘Financial Bantz’.
*Ron, if Vic hasn’t already bagged this plum gig, and I suspect he has, can I review new models as they come on the market?
** My list of sounds, like those tests I had at the STI clinic, is far from conclusive, so please leave suggestions below.