The Musings Of An Opinionated Sod [Help Me Grow!]


We’re Going To Fucking Wembley …
May 18, 2022, 8:45 am
Filed under: Football, Nottingham, Nottingham Forest

Bottom of the league after 7 games.
Worst start in 108 years.
Team down and out.

And yet, since the brilliant Steve Cooper came in as manager, we have fought our way to a position where we are going to Wembley to play in the Championship final with the prize being a seat at the Premiership table.

Last time I saw Forest at Wembley … it was a different millennium and Wembley was a different stadium.

[We lost, thanks to an own goal – in fact the only goal he scored in his entire carer – from Forest defender Des Walker. Not to mention the ref not sending off Gascoigne when he blatantly fouled one of our players so Spurs didn’t end up going down to 10 men. But hey, am I bitter? Errrrrm, yes … yes I am actually]

But all that aside, this is amazing.

As in, truly, truly amazing.

I was definitely scared for a moment … especially when it went to penalties, but we did it.

Win or lose, this is a season that will long live in the memory. Up their with our most glories of glory years.

And yes, I cried. Sue me.

Need to go and lie down, my blood pressure is threatening a nuclear meltdown.

You fucking beautiful reds!!!



No Post Till I Know If I’m Going To Be Crying Happy Or Sad Tears …
May 18, 2022, 8:15 am
Filed under: Comment, Football, Nottingham, Nottingham Forest

… come on you reds. Pleeeeeease.



You Don’t Get The Chance To Be Part Of History Very Often …
May 17, 2022, 8:15 am
Filed under: Football, Nottingham, Nottingham Forest

Later today – or in NZ time, very early tomorrow morning – Nottingham Forest play the second leg of the Championship Playoff against Sheffield United.

We played the first leg at their ground last Saturday and won, 1-2.

It should have been 2 nil … but it wouldn’t be Forest without letting in a needless goal on the 90th minute so they still have a chance to scupper us.

And don’t think I’m just being a doom-fan, they did just that in 2003 when we were in this position … beating us 4-3 at home. ARGHHHHHH.

But beating them tonight isn’t just about revenge.

Nor is it even about getting closer to the Premiership.

It would be another way I can get my revenge at the RHCP for sacking me.

What am I talking about?

Well I recently saw this article in a Yorkshire newspaper …

… and while Flea was pretty decent to me, at this point – with the scale of this result at stake – all alliances are well and truly off, hahaha.

But even with that, this is already beyond our wildest dreams.

At the start of the season, we were rock-solid bottom of the league with just 1 miserly point after 7 games played..

It was our worst start in 108 years.

ONE HUNDRED AND EIGHT.

So to be in this position is beyond anything anyone could have hoped for – especially as we all expected it would be a relegation battle season, rather than a chance at getting in the Premiership.

For all our amazing success, Forest have been fucking pants for 2 decades.

Even a couple of years ago, when we were in the playoff position for basically the whole season, we managed to lose the very last game by enough goals to ensure we ended up outside the playoff position

I honestly took over a year to recover from that … but here we are, potentially 180 minutes from the big time. Back where I would like to say we belong but have not been there for 23 years.

Hell, if we had not just had a meltdown against Bournemouth a couple of weeks ago, we could have even made automatic promotion – and that would have just been nuts.

So while I still am burned from 23+ years of broken dreams and false promises, I hope they make it. I still feel they’ll slip up as that is just what I’ve been conditioned to expect – but it would be amazing for them, the manager and the city as a whole if they didn’t.

I would cry.

Proper cry.

Not just because I’d be so proud of them, but it would take me back to being a kid when being from Nottingham meant you were part of Clough’s all-conquering team and that felt so special.

And while they will never win the European Cup again, getting back to the Premiership would be something worth celebrating for years.

But even that wouldn’t be as huge as this teams ability to make me – and the whole city of Nottingham – fall in love with Forest and football again.

The scenes this year are arguably better than anything I saw even in the glory years … so while I desperately want to see them win, in some ways, they already have.

Good luck Forest.

Come on your reds.



Why Longevity Is About Commitment, Not Expectation …

I recently read an article about footballers who continue to ply their trade in the Premiership despite being in their mid 30’s.

The key takeout was that talent might be able to get you to 17 … but it’s character and commitment that gets you to 35.

It was an interesting view, because there’s a lot of parallels with the ad industry.

Let’s be honest, this industry doesn’t like older people.

We’re expensive.
We’re not willing to work the insane hours it likes us to work.
We’re not as connected to society as our younger colleagues.
We’re all a bit cynical about the claims and promises.

Of course, there is a counter-argument, that these are exactly the sort of attributes the ad industry needs more of.

Experience.
Balance.
Understanding.
Pragmatism.

But what bothers me most is the blanket belief that if you’re not in senior management by a certain age, you have nothing to add. That your value is only in managing the business rather than adding to the creativity.

I wrote about how shortsighted this view was ages ago … reinforced by how much I loved Wieden looked for the creativity in the person rather than the age.

Which leads to my point about footballers.

One of the biggest problems when you’re older is people expect you to know it all.

Of course, some people think they do, but there’s this undercurrant that you should.

So any ‘failure’ is seen as a sign of no longer being appropriate.
Any ‘disagreement’ is viewed as a sign you are not a ‘team player’.
And ‘curiorsity’ gets labelled as trying ‘too hard’.

And yet these say far more about the person judging than the person doing it.

Because in my experience, a failure means a willingness to keep pushing boundaries.
Disagreements don’t mean you’re not a team player, you’re someone who wants the team to be better.
And curiosity is a demonstration you want to play an active role in culture rather than just let it pass you by.

Not to mention the declaration of desire.

Because anyone who chooses to keep pushing their standards and knowledge when they could be choosing an easier path is showing just how much they still want it. Especially when the odds are even greater of them ever achieving it, compared to those younger than them.

For me, these are the advertising equivilent of the footballers character and commitment.

Or said another way …

It’s someone who can keep pace with the needs of the team, while adding to the standards and success of it.

Keeping pace is not simply about speed, but relevance, ambition and creativity.

Of course age doesn’t shouldn’t have anything to do with this – I have met just as many younger people without it as much as I have older – but character and commitment does.

And while there is nothing wrong if you don’t subscribe to this, if companies only measure ‘talent’ by age … they’re not just stupid, they’re showing that they don’t actually care about creativity, just the cliche of it.



Respect Ignites The Beauty In Competition …
April 13, 2022, 8:15 am
Filed under: Attitude & Aptitude, Childhood, Comment, Football, Nottingham, Nottingham Forest

A few weeks ago, Nottingham Forest played Liverpool in the FA cup.

It was the first time in 23 years we had played each other and while the recent history of both clubs could mot be further apart, seeing the, both acknowledge their old rivalry – when they ruled Europe – was something special to see.

Liverpool started it with this magnificent video.

Watching it was very moving to me.

Not just because it takes me back to my childhood, but it takes me back to matches I actually attended.

With my Dad and friends.

Special times.

Memories of my youth, my home, my family.

And then Forest did something that made me incredibly proud.

To honour the 97 Liverpool fans who tragically died at Hillsborough – when Liverpool again played Forest – they did this.

With all the shit going on in the World at the moment, seeing old enemies respect each other before competing against each other was something wonderful to see.

Even though we lost 0-1 and our roof suddenly started leaking as there was a huge storm in Auckland while the match was on … it was still a welcome distraction from the feeling of fear that has permeated the globe thanks to the ego of old, rich, toxic, white politicians.

So thank you to Liverpool for the moment and the memories [again] and thank you to Nottingham Forest for letting me believe that even in the worst of times, there’s a chance for something special to come out the other side.

Come on you reds.