I recently joined a new football team. That's not normally something I'd bore you all with by blogging about it, but there's a little story here.
I was chatting to Dave, who organises this regular 8-a-side kickabout once a week on a Tuesday, and he told me that, as a loosely connected group, they've been playing in this same booking, on the same pitch in Clerkenwell for neary 18 years. Josh, the youngest member of the team was born in the same year that founder members Dave, Andy and Wes started kicking a ball aroung the Finsbury Leisure Centre pitches.
The group of lads is, of course, about as authentic as Triggers broom, but one way or another, this little tradition in this little corner of Zone 1 has been there, without a break, for years. It's the sort of thing that reminds you that even the great metropolis is made up of actual real people forming their own traditions in spite of anyones assertions that communty spirit is a commodity no longer available in the post Thatcher inner city. The squad of twenty is about as multi-cultural as you can get and truly, genuinely classless. I hate to spout the cliche that only sport can do things like this.
All I need to do to join in is try and keep up with Josh and close my ears to the nicknames that accompany the weekly league table.