I borrowed the title (of this story) from the, then famous, Cornershop song “Brimful of Asha”. That song was dedicated to Asha Bhosle, whereas, this post is all about me being a Geordie. Infantile humour! you might think of, yet, I want you to continue reading…
The idea to write this story came from not long ago, after I had a friendly argument with one of my mates. It was the usual tete-a-tete on Facebook, when we hit upon sports. I knew he was interested in Mixed Martial Arts (MMA), but, was unaware that he was its mighty fan. So, I randomly asked him what made him so fascinate about that sport. In reciprocation, he questioned what fascinated me in my club, Newcastle United?
There was a momentary pause between me and my sparring partner and both knew that a message was conveyed to my sub-conscious mind. That message made me glad and inconclusive at the same time. Inconclusive because, I was unsure whether I was really passionate about my club and if yes, by what periphery?
2014-15: The Beginning
It was in the winter of 2014, I watched a movie called “Goal! The Dream Begins” on TV. The story revolved around a young lad from Mexico, who would travel to England to fulfill his dream to be a footballer and who eventually ends up being a superstar with Newcastle United.
The story and its soundtrack (since it mostly played songs of my favourite band Oasis) had an overpowering effect on me, that, there was an instant decision made to be a Geordie.
Now to tell you, Geordie is a native of Toon (or town [here Newcastle]) or in general, my club fanatic.
Next, I researched and did much to know about the club and its players. I was happy to see the heavily tattooed, well-built and physically fit players of the club (reminding me of Mutton Ka Dukaan as mentioned by Johnny Lever in one of his movies). I could now boast with my mates.
The English Premier League season had started by then, and I was soon watching my club play for the first time. I was now one amongst them and my fascination grew skywards.
2015-16: Height of Madness
As my liking to this new found passion grew, I also changed my profile name on Facebook by prefixing “NUFC” (for Newcastle Football Club) to it, something like Rupesh ‘NUFC’ UK. I see many cretins in the fan base do that, hence, my desire in doing the same.
I enjoyed studying banters hurled between different club members on the fan sites. Mockery it was, but all in good sense.
I came to know that my club had a healthy rivalry with another club called Sunderland. Tempers normally flare up during derby matches and the banters usually end up being nasty. Somehow all these made me believe that club rivalries turn fan bases into cliques.
In between, I asked my brother to order a club hoodie, as it was not available in Bangalore, and I had to ask him as it was easy for him to purchase the merchandise from U.S.A. Seeing my situation, he also bought me a name plate that had our (sacred) ground’s name engraved on it. I still have it displayed on my Facebook profile.
But despite all this fanatic fervor, the club ran into bad times as if someone had cast a spell on it. Problems took turns and it started to loose derbies and eventually dropped the pecking order to be relegated to the Championship.
To make a honest confession, the club became a mid-table team since I became a fan, so, I sometimes wonder if I were the curse. I shudder at that thought.
2016-17: The Resurrection
Upon relegation, I did not lose heart and by some astral influence the club played really well in the Championship and they bounced back to the Premier League, at the first time of asking (a rarity for teams taking the plunge into the chasms of the Championship).
Now, to make things worse for our rivals, they were relegated this season. As fans, we only think it was Karma that had be-felled on our arch rivals to get relegated (as opposed to their banters).
So, the happy news is we are back in the Premier League (and secretly eyeing the Champions league spot this time).
Howay the lads!!!