There is a famous Hollywood legend that tells of a young “runner” on a Hitchcock movie who approached the great man telling him how he always had great ideas for movies, just before he fell asleep at night. His problem was, when he awoke, he had completely forgotten them. Hitchcock’s advice to him was, that he should keep pen and paper by his bed, and jot down his ideas just before he fell asleep. The story goes, that the young acolyte tried this the very same night, and on waking eagerly sought the pad by his bedside, on which was written the words, “Boy meets Girl!”
Yes, we’ve all been there. We’ve all had those late at night brilliant ideas that inevitably turn out to be crap the next morning. I call them “Vampires” because daylight destroys them, utterly.
This “great” idea was born on that fitful night at the San Siro when Milan handed us that right beating, and one of my fellow Gooners in the pub cried out in despair, “Why do I support this fucking team?”
Now it may have been just a spur of the moment, and indeed, a purely rhetorical question, but nonetheless, when the game was over, and as we contemplated our uselessness, we asked each other the same question.....Why Arsenal? Considering we were all Irishmen from Tipperary with absolutely no connection to North London whatsoever, the answers were so different and, in a weird way, very logical, that the seed was sown and the idea took root.
What makes us Gooners? It can’t be geography, or hereditary, (although some are), but what makes Gooners in San Francisco congregate at ungodly hours to watch our games, even though they’ve never even seen the Holloway Road. What makes Gooners in the Far East get up in the middle of the night, to watch a league cup game against Shrewsbury Town?
Why am I, a proud Tipperary man, less affected when Tipp, or Ireland, lose than when Arsenal lose, which can bother me for days?
So here is my idea. Over the coming months I will be contacting Arsenal fans and asking them to answer ten simple questions about being a Gooner. Obviously I can’t ask everybody, but I will try to get as wide a spread of Fans as possible, from as wide a variety of locations as possible. You can be from Hackney or Mumbai or Detroit, you can be Wenger in, Wenger out, Wenger shake it all about, I don’t care, all I ask is that if you are contacted take a bit of time to think over your answers.
Maybe it fly, maybe it will flat on its arse, who knows. Whatever, it will be your space, your opportunity to talk about Your Arsenal.