The Quiet Fan

By Ian Plenderleith

A fast, funny, emotive memoir showing how most fans really follow football.

Wednesday, 10 May 2017

Chapter One - boxed set and sampler

Dear backers and potential readers,

The boxed set for Chapter One, 'Lincoln City v Exeter City: Cursing' is now on my pledge page. There will be future boxed sets for each specific chapter, though not necessarily in any coherent order (depends which cupboards and boxes I open first).

After an Introduction severely doubting the worth of Albert Camus' quote connecting football to morals and our obligations to mankind, Chapter One gets down to a topic that really concerns football fans - swearing. I started young, and at this particular game - aged just seven - managed to silence an entire stand by vociferously and slanderously expressing my discontent at the performance of the home team.

It was January 1973 and Graham Taylor had just taken charge at Lincoln. In his programme notes he wrote that when the crowd gets on the players' backs “things go from bad to worse”. So, I wasn't helping much by shouting out, "Come on Lincoln, you useless twats!" Taylor's courteous warning had gone over my head - when it came to the match programme I only ever looked at the pictures.

Sample paragraph: "Lincolnshire football crowds have never had a whole lot to cheer about, and my memory of watching football in the 1970s across the so-called Scunny Triangle – a trilateral linking of the footballing flatlands of Grimsby, Scunthorpe and Lincoln – is to have been in the company of men who gave off an air of sullen resignation, and who rarely allowed themselves the indignity of being overwhelmed by emotion. However, there were certain things that seemed to get Lincoln fans worked up, and it wasn’t their team playing like a bunch of useless twats. Blacks and Irish, for example."

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