Well the footy finals are upon us and with the mighty MCG within walking distance of the cottage how could I neglect to mention this important month on the sporting calendar. It always amazes me that 8 teams reach the finals - I thought the finals were - well - the finals - but we seem to have to draw out the event until the real finals finally come around and we're all exhausted by the last Saturday in September (and hopefully our team wins!)
There is an extra buzz this year as the local Richmond team (the Tigers) has 'come from nowhere' to reach the final 8. And they did it by winning their last 9 games in a row - pretty amazing as they were languishing near the bottom of the ladder until their surge.
Richmond followers have gone into what can only be described as 'tiger hysteria'. They have waited years just to get to this point. It's been a long time since Richmond won the flag in 1980 so the fans have much to celebrate to get into the top 8. Will they win the flag - it would mean 13 straight wins - now that really would be a miracle (as a Geelong Cats supporter I must say I hope we win and not the Tigers but...)
|A Tiger doing the splits!|
Renowned artist Nick Howson must have 'felt the future' when he painted a massive mural in Swan Street close to the Richmond Station (between Lennox Street and Punt Road). Over a three month period he struggled to get 'official' approval to paint the mural with 'the powers that be' handballing him back and forth until he just went ahead and painted it. It will now be 'classified' by all Richmond supporters and I dare any bureaucrat to have it removed (even if the Tigers don't make the Grand Final). There is a marvellous article in The Age (click here) explaining how the mural came about. He did it in a day - with meticulous planning - and wasn't questioned by anyone!! And it's interesting to note that Howson is actually a - I can hardly bring myself to say it - a Collingwood supporter!
|Tiger Legend - both the footy player and now the artist Nick Howson (The Age)|
I'll leave you with the story of the Pelaco Girls which I wrote about here in which the 'girls' from the nearby Pelaco Factory would down sewing machines and head to the ground where '..a canopy had to be constructed over the Richmond players' entry onto the field because women, angry at some of the performances, were poking them with knitting needles. There is a long tradition of Richmond fans actively haranguing their team'. Well things have finally changed for the knitting needle brigade this year. How far they go is anyone's guess but with the current hysteria you just never know!
So in your wanders do pop down to see the mural - it will have heritage listing soon!