Once again I found myself sitting in the back room of that esteemed Essendon establishment Goofy‘s Pizza awaiting the arrival of my good friend and confidant Tiffany. In my opinion she is the best female football journalist in the land, winner of the inaugural Harry Bence Essendon Gazette sports journalism award, something Caro hasn‘t even been nominated for, while totally eclipsing that female Golem in the looks department by a country mile. Not that I want to get personal you understand but recent events have somewhat modified my natural sense of gallantry towards Caro and the allowances I would normally make for her technical appearance of femininity.
These musings were interrupted by the clacking of high heels that heralded the arrival of Tiff in red velvet hotpants, halter top of bright yellow and just a hint of Revee Gerand perfume. A huge smile lit up her face, directed at the large volcano pizza which she immediately annexed and then a smaller tighter smile was aimed in my direction.
Tiffany when on a mission was not a person to mince words.
â€œJackie I have a plan to save Hirdy, the club and stick it up Demetriou in a place where the son doesn‘t shine!â€
â€œHe might enjoy that Tiffany but why save Hirdy he‘s been a disaster â€“ first the soft tissue injury fiasco he presided over, now the supplements scandal not to mention locking us out of training for ages.â€
â€œOkay Jackie he‘s done some stupid things and some awful things â€“ particularly the training bans but I‘m sure he has learnt from his mistakes and is improving as a coach. We have to fight this and I‘ve come up with a plan.â€
Plans had been mentioned twice so I knew that I was going to have to listen and let‘s face it Tiff‘s a clever girl. Tiffany meanwhile pulled a framed photo of a footballer from her bag. He was high off the ground arms spread wide with a high follow through executing a kick. His hair was slicked down and he was wearing red white and blue hoops.
â€œDo you know who that is Jackie?â€ she asked as she grabbed another slice of pizza.
â€œOf course its Teddy Whitten.â€
â€œTell me what he‘s got in common with Hird.â€
â€œWell he was a great player, possibly the best of his era. The E.J. Whitten medal Hird won is named in his honour. He was courageous, versatile a premiership player and a legend of his club.â€
Tiffany nodded and smiled and edged closer to me her knee touching mine and her hand on my leg which I had learned meant she wanted something. Damm it but it always worked.
â€œJackie soon there‘s going to be another similarity!â€
I raised a quizzical eyebrow while Tiffany continued:
â€œWhitten was the last playing coach in VFL history â€“ he won the flag and I‘m proposing that Hirdy joins him!â€
The enormity of Tiffany‘s idea hit me at once but immediately I saw problems.
â€œHe‘s just been banned from coaching for twelve months.â€
â€œYes but not from playing. The only qualification for the draft is to be over eighteen. We can draft him with our last pick â€“ he‘s got to be better than some young kid at pick 122. Once he‘s on the field as a player there‘s absolutely nothing to stop him giving instructions or speaking in the huddles during breaks. Just think what an inspiration he will be on the field.â€ said Tiffany with glee leaning towards me and giving me the full benefit of her halter top.
â€œTiffany he‘s just too old.â€
â€œNot so â€“ compare him to Fletcher. He won a best and fairest in his final season at the club and he‘s obviously kept himself fit just look at him and think how motivated he would be.â€
â€œBut Tiff he‘s still too old surely.â€
â€œHa â€“ aren‘t you forgetting something? What about the anti-ageing creams. If he‘s had those as reported they will have kicked in. Why he‘s just a boy!â€
You can see how hard it is to win an argument with Tiffany and I shuddered a bit at what was going to come next but at the same time I had to admire her she‘s feisty and she‘s smart.
â€œWhat do I have to do Tiff?â€
â€œJackie I want you to approach him discretely and put the idea to him.â€
â€œTiff if he won‘t let me into training he won‘t let me into his house and why would he listen to me?â€
Tiffany squeezed my leg and gave me her special look.
â€œTry Jackie the rewards will be worth itâ€ she said with one of those smiles that melted all resistance.
So there it is â€“ I‘m off to see the great man. Will he go for the idea, will it ■■■■ off Demetriou, what rewards might be on offer from Tiff? We‘ll just have to wait and see.