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Sports blogs should start at the beginning of the season. This is my belief. Some keen bloggers may even start in preseason – set the scene, highlight the potential big guns etc etc, but that’s a little keen for me.

So “Why,” you’re probably thinking “Is he starting his blog at the end of his season?” I procrastinated. I am a procrastinator, I even meant to write this blog last weekend, but didn’t.

The season over here in England runs from September – starting with the Bath 8s organized by fellow my blogger to Nik Roberts to April where the Flags festivals bring the curtain down.

I’m not going to batter on about my club, and the league, and how our the flat above our changing rooms got burned out and no-one told us so we turned up for a game and had no changing rooms – luckily the weather was nice and the opposition understanding, at least not today anyway.

Today I am going to talk about me and my life with lacrosse.

My life started at the age of 19 ¾. Well not exactly…but you get what I’m saying.

It was a Sunday in 2003, 11 days into my time at Loughborough University, I was hung over – and the sight of people doing karate or taekwondo or something was making me feel sick. Then all of a sudden, there was a girl stood on a table. She was wearing hot pants – or at the very least short shorts. She had in her hands a lacrosse stick. I was smitten.

Yes, that is correct – I started playing lacrosse to meet girls, sue me*!
(* I wouldn’t bother, I don’t actually have any money)

So I started to play lacrosse based mainly on the fact that there were only about 10 other guys in the club and around 30 girls. The girls team were (and are currently) National Champions, there was no men’s team. We played mixed – a bastardized version of women’s lacrosse that involved running faster than the girls and shooting really hard from point blank range. The club now has over 100 members with about 50/50 gender split, two womens teams, and a mens squad that won the National Cup (2nd tier) competition.

We finally had enough guys to get a team going towards the end of my second year (of three) we played some tournaments at home and abroad (Ireland) and played some friendlies against other nearby unis who were at a similar stage.

In fact there were enough unis nearby at a similar stage that the next year SEMLA started a league for us. We did ok. I personally did ok, played some 2 way middie, took some face offs (even won 4 or 5 I think) scored some goals got some assists and didn’t get into any fights. Oh and I captained and coached the team made up mostly of guys who like me hadn’t picked up a stick until they came to uni. It was at the very least stressful and sometimes it was even fun.

Then I left uni and moved back home to Newcastle. I knew the Uni (not to be confused with the Poly) had a team, but they recently had tough on non-students playing so I was without lax. It was tough. I played some rugby drank some beers for a year then decided to get back into it.

So during the 07/08 season I travelled to Leeds to play…2 hours on the train and a 45 minute bus ride to the ground…I thought I was mad, so who knows what the rest of the boys thought.

Then in April It happened. I got an email. From a Dr Mark Webb. “Let’s start a club in Newcastle” it said. “Okay” I replied. That was that sometime in the middle of March 2008. Now a year later Newcastle upon Tyne LC (new website to follow shortly) is finishing 4th in the League and lost a close Nigel Wayne Trophy (aka John Wayne Shootout) final to Leeds 11-6.

Not a bad first 12 months (give or take) in my opinion…not a bad first blog either…

The problem with blogs, is where to start.  I’m sure once I get into the flow of things stuff will come easy!

Should I concentrate on what I do for work or what I do for my club; my hobby and work seem to merge spectacularly, one of the dangers of working for the sport you love I suppose.

Development, what’s that?  Answers on a post card J I seem to spend a lot of time on the M4 or M3 (main routes to London), maybe I could become a traffic correspondent – “The M4 near Reading has stopped moving today because some dolt has decided to park his car facing the wrong way in the fast lane”  

Or maybe one of those blokes who goes and eats at the service stations in order to write a food guide or something – “The £5.99 bacon bap came across as a combination of cardboard and that stuff 13th century sailors used to eat when they were starving;  great value really, about £1 a tooth”

No doubt both will feature highly.

The week started okay, I drove the mini bus to Wandsworth South London with the second team to get a spanking in the Flags (knock out competition), outclassed and outpaced in most departments.  The problem was that we scored first and just got them mad.  The kids did well though, Bath seconds are a real mixture of old farts (Me ), students (hangover), and teenagers (acne).  The after match food was good as well.  Chicken in rice and a chilli sauce that completely anesthetised your lips.  The highlight of the drive back was some numpty overtaking us on a country lane, then getting out of his car to swear at us for being in the way.  Maybe he didn’t see 15 lunatic lacrosse players in the bus, otherwise he might have thought better of it.

County Sport meetings in the week Bristol and London are always a blast.  I see another guide book opportunity in that as well; “Curly sandwiches and things on sticks”.  A big talking point across the region is Sports Unlimited.  Lots of coaching available between 3:15 and 5, but no facilities or enough coaches, and how do you “aim” something at a Semi Sporty kid?  What is a “Semi Sporty” kid?

Club training went well, the girls nattered, the boys moaned, there must be some joy in dealing with little kids and teenagers.  One thing they all have in common, is they can’t put their pads and helmets on.  I now have thumbs like Garth after popping god knows how many chin straps on helmets.  Got some new kids along though.  It was great to see the 8 year olds running around with all the kit on.  It always reminds me of Marvin the Martian.

Next week sees the build up to my son’s 18th Birthday.  I will I finally get a pint out of him legally?  And my daughter comes back from skiing (all in one piece I hope), family reunited…ahhhhh.  More like the end of peace and quiet, ho hum

Streborkin

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