guest blog: angry man is angry with an extra ‘y’

August 23rd, 2010

Please welcome another installment from Errol’s favourite guest blogger and generally angry man, Angry Man. This time, Angry Man’s got his outrage on about footy-y nicknames, and we admit: we’re guilty of it too. Sorry, Angry Man!

When Angry Man was in kindergarten, there were three boys in the class named Nicholas. In order to make things easier for classmates, one boy was called Nick, another dubbed Nicky and the final one kept the full Nicholas. In the world of Rugby League commentators, the solution to the above conundrum would be to call all three boys Nicky.

This verbal infliction was first bought to Angry Man’s attention by yet another school teacher. This one, a sage old chap by the name of Mr Maher. He once asked, “Why is it that rugby league commentators are determined to dumb down the game by throwing a “y” on the end of every player’s Christian name?”

And then it dawned – he was right.

Before continuing, it’s important to make two points. Firstly, Angry Man loves nicknames. “Piggy” is a terrific name for Mark Riddell, and the moniker given to old Bulldogs hooker Robert Mears of “Paps” is up there with the best. Secondly, in some cases, the “y” on the end suits the bloke and has replaced the proper name altogether. Cases in point are Benny Elias and Tommy Raudonikis.

But you can’t tell me that every single bloke who laces on a footy boot and takes the field has a first named ending with “y.” Well, listening to the average game of footy on the weekend would leave you thinking otherwise.

Let’s take a Rabbitohs game for example. It’s not unrealistic to envisage in one passage of play that Chrissy Sandow, may pass to Johnny Sutton, onto Sammy Burgess who pops it out the back to Davey Taylor who offloads to a flying Rhyssy Wesser who goes over untouched the corner … are you kidding me?

The “Davey” example is particularly grating, right alongside “Franky”, “Izzy” and “Stevey” as being the most irritating. If it’s bad when done to players though, it’s even worse when applied to coaches. “Timmy” Sheens is one that’s especially annoying as we’re talking about a distinguished grown man in his 60’s who’s being verbally reduced to the naughty little six-year-old in the corner.

This is a disease and one that appears to affect all rugby league commentators alike. It’s guaranteed to pop up at least a couple of times per team during any Tuesday night reading of the team sheets. It even happens with blokes making their first grade debut. Surely the commentator doesn’t know every player in the competition so well as to know that they prefer “Georgy” instead of George.

Gary Freeman should also put his hand up for a fair share of blame. Freeman does it so often that last year during a Sharks game he called Luke Covell, “Lukey Covelly.”

But Phil Gould holds the unwanted distinction of the world’s worst ever piece of commentary: “I like Lukey Lewis, Lukey’s a nice boy.”

[disclaimer: Errol loves hearing Gus’ pronouncements in commentary on who he likes! Our personal favourite was his comment about Jason ‘Flossy’ Nightingale: “I like him, but he’s special”. AMEN.]

What’s so wrong about putting a “y” on the end of a player’s name? Well, as Mr Maher pointed out, it dumbs down the game. Doing it incessantly reduces rugby league to the lowest common denominator. Rugby League is a working class game but that doesn’t mean that working class or football for that matter has to be equated with dumb.

Angry Man doesn’t mind the “y” when it’s used sparingly. But when it’s abused and overused it becomes cringe worthy. It’s a verbal tic that has spread like a virus. Commentators need to take heed: Like not every sheep is white, not every Matt is Matty!


guest blogger: introducing ‘Angry Man’

July 11th, 2010

We’re sure you’ve noticed the rate of Errol blogs has slowed down somewhat this year. We know you guys love us, think we’re awesome personified and get uncontrollable sexytimes urges when you watch our Errol TV videos…right? Yeh, thought so.

We’re sure your lives are much darker without our regular lolz, so since we aren’t as available to blog at will as we once were, we’ve decided to be all clever and modern and OUTSOURCE! Hoorah! Our new guest blogger is from our nation’s capital, a boy and holds a shitload of barely supressed rage. That’s all we can tell you about him. Behold, Angry Man!

I should have been born in the 1930’s.

Life was much simpler then. There were no metal detectors at pubs and night clubs. There were no complicated gadgets starting with an uncapitalised “i”. People back then had better manners and a sense of subtlety that’s absent in our modern plasticine culture.

Sure – the 30’s started badly with the Great Depression….. and the rising tide of militarism eventually led to the Second World War. But still, it was a much simpler time.

And I wish I had of been born in that golden decade.

Rugby League is a terrific game. The best game.  Though I guess I still view the game through the eyes of a bloke that was born generations after his time.

And those eyes tell me there’s room in Rugby League for improvements.

Though don’t be fooled by the incessant bleating emanating from the self-appointed doyen of Rugby League commentary Phil Gould.  If ever there was an example of someone who professed to love something they constantly beat up, it’s this man. It’s easy to dislike Gould and I make no apologies for it.

No – the majority of the improvements are “subtle” and could easily be made. The 30’s might be over but we could use some of the qualities that were vogue in that time to reinvigorate and restore Rugby League to it’s rightful place as Australia’s favourite winter sport.

Over the coming months, Angry Man will look at some of the “real” pressing issues effecting Rugby League. Things like:

– The awfulness of players wearing white boots with their socks pulled down;

– The Melbourne Storm salary cap debacle – whose really to blame; and of course

–  The obsession Rugby League commentators have with placing a “y” on the end of players’ Christian names. Hence all Tim’s become Timmy and not a single Matt in the comp is called anything other than Matty;

Angry Man is often told he has an opinion on everything. Well, to paraphrase the great Winston Churchill, a man who dies without any enemies never stood for anything in his life.

Perhaps the one good thing about our current age is that in the year 2010, anyone can make an impact. And by promulgating some of Rugby League’s less covered issues, Angry Man hopes to mould Rugby League back to the type of game that a fine gentleman from the 1930’s would be proud of.  Hope you’ll stick around.

(Note – everything said in Angry Man blogs are HIS opinions, not ours. Please react accordingly.)