Thick Cut Marmalade

…out from bed, pull on jeans and a sweater over sleepy skin, slip into clogs, unlock the garage, push up the door, lift out the bike and spin round to the corner shop, buy a big, fat, Saturday newspaper, a fresh loaf, cycle home (steering one-handed), park the bike, pull the garage door shut, lock it, go straight to the kitchen, put the News, Travel, Review, Business, and Magazine to one side of the table, open the back door to let sunlight and fresh air in, fill the kettle, lean over the sink to switch the radio to BBC6 Music, drop the teabag in MY blue & white hooped mug, hack three doorsteps off this crusty loaf, (the oval crispy end and two immense slices), pick at pieces of the egg-glazed, ridged, crust that shower off the knife’s serrated blade, lift the lid from the heavy, hand-made butter dish, peel off curling leaves as big as breaking waves from the milk-yellow block, struggle getting butter off the knife onto the bread, reach for the new marmalade jar from the inside top of the fridge door, twist off the lid, smile at “ppphuttt” of air as the seal breaks first time in my manly grasp, move to the kettle that just clicked, fill the mug, cut into the smooth, untrammelled marmalade skin, dig out pieces of sugared peel and orange jelly, add it to lumps of butter on the wedges of bread, bin the teabag, top off the mug with full fat milk, lob the teaspoon into the sink, pull the kitchen stool underneath by rear with my left foot, perch, unfold the Sports section and take as big a bite of that oven-fresh, warm white bread, butter and marmalade as I can stretch my mouth to take, while I study the football fixtures to see who plays who this afternoon, read the match previews, glance at the clock with half an eye…

Christopher Perry

Saturday 18th April, 2020

n.b. We would have been playing at Southend United today under different circumstances.

n.n.b. www.napowrimo.net Day 18 Prompt: Celebration of life’s small pleasures…breakfast on a match day.

Not Again!

More bloody football!

It’s Monday! Television –

Remote controller

.

n.b. Matches scheduled to spread the output of live entertainment for armchair spectators means that football is played for television broadcast seven days a week.

I could go on, but Arsenal FC are coming to town and I have things to do before the game this evening.

CLP 02/03/2020

By Tomorrow

Valentine’s Day will

Have slipt over horizon

And football returns

.

n.b. Perfect timing, a home fixture on 15th February! A good excuse for a quiet night in and an early night, for tomorrow there is a match to be played and all this 🌹forgotten.

(Of course, everyday is Valentine’s Day. Love to everyone, where ever you are xx).

.

CLP 14/02/2020

“Football? I don’t get it”

Our talk turned to football

As it would sat at “The Cricketers”

In Small Heath on the hill

On a February afternoon

Carrying snow in the air

Close to frost on the ground

“I follow The Blues. Ever since my father took me along.

I was twelve then, in 1954

But I like football generally

You know?”

‘I do’ I said

And our match was made

For 90 minutes

With time added on

For good company

.

n.b. Either you get it, or you don’t. Danny, aged 77 is still 12 years old when he talks football. “Owh! Just look at his face! Look at his face!” as Barry Davies re-marked during a BBC Match of the Day commentary many years ago. You can see the light in the eyes.

I only met Danny yesterday and probably won’t ever see him again, but what a great conversationalist.

CLP 12/02/2020

On the Weekend (IX)

Wet Sunday Morning

Porridge, tea and toast, Sports Mail

Time for studying

.

n.b. I was very lucky as a child to be sent the Sports Mail each week by my grandfather (Grampy). At a young age and living a distance from Fratton Park this regular diet of football news, results and statistics sustained and fuelled my interest in Pompey.

Despite the thin content of the writing these days, I still enjoy spending time skipping through this publication, one of a few specialist, local football newspapers that remain in the country. No longer rushed out on a Saturday evening, but produced for Sunday morning distribution, it remains a rare treat at weekends.

Of course the back page with the match results, names of goal-scorers, ground attendances and league tables consumes most of my attention. I particularly like seeing how many goals were scored in the last minute (90th) of the games.

This week there were ten last minute goals, including two for Aveley that decided the FA Trophy match in their favour against Chelmsford, (attendance 811).

CLP 09/02/2020

On Proximity

Having unwittingly been passed on from one prospective landlady to another, I land here. Photo adapted from Google Maps App.

On Proximity

Could we be closer?

Is that even possible?

Not too close I hope

.

n.b. In looking for a temporary base from which to start composing the next chapter in my life, Fate has pitched me into familiar territory.

My life-long association with Fratton Park seems set to become a little more intimate in coming weeks.

We’ll have to tread carefully around each other as we have never actually lived this close together before.

n.n.b. I did not, repeat, did not know my accommodation enquiry would lead me to this specific location.

CLP 10/01/2020