It is always interesting at a club when you throw together a range of people from different rugby backgrounds. You learn new skills, how priorities vary for each individual depending on level of rugby played, personal life etc. And from this, everybody can learn from each other.
A case in point occurred after the home league fixture against Barking shortly before Christmas. I was at Clapham Junction on my way home when I saw a lady in front of me carrying a Rugbytech kitbag emblazoned with the London Scottish logo. Curious, I approached said lady and asked her of her connection to the club. She informed me that she was carrying her boyfriend’s bag home while he had a few post-match beers at the club. On enquiry, I discovered that the boyfriend in question was none other than James Brown. On the back of this, he has been elevated to the status of personal idol. It is one thing persuading the other half to drive your bag home, quite another to get her to lug it across London’s public transport system. It must have involved the elevation of sweet-talk and persuasion to a perfect art form. Truly admirable.
On the flipside, we discovered that a certain squad member could probably do with some lessons from his teammates. The team Christmas party was held after the Henley game upstairs in the Bedford in Balham where we were all to be found donning comedy Christmas jumpers and apprehensive facial expressions as we waited to see what the evening had in store. As the mandatory court session commenced, our esteemed captain, Gary Truman was conspicuous by his absence. When he finally arrived, he was quite rightly punished with a couple of glugs from a spirits bottle administered by Matt Heeks. Gary made a beeline for the nearest bin and it was some hours before he summoned up the courage to stray from its side again. Lessons may be required here.
The end of the first half of the season was celebrated with suitable gusto as the payers let their hair down and rightly so. Plenty of banter flew around, only occasionally looking like bubbling over, particularly between Paul Volley and Willie Lipp (the only squad member to be named after 2 body parts) who had some good niggling aggro going on.
After a frustrating month of alternately frozen and waterlogged pitches, we are back down to the tough stuff and ready to push on for the rest of the season.