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On Getting a Job Part Two: The Football Commentary Episode

Twat in the Gantry

I have not realised the dream of supping on fine ales with men in crisp white shirts, ties Ramboed around their head after a long, arduous shift, quite yet. The closest I have got to a true experience of a working life is a Kombat Opera song. In the wilderness of the job market, I am still the ill-experienced youth, weapon in hand, chasing after the boar I’m not 100% sure I want to skin.

However, I thought I’d struck gold when a friend, via a social networking site, shared an opportunity to be a football commentator. I was in a confident enough mood to think I could take this on. Even the man at the JobCentre encouraged me. So, with no previous experience apart from a small part in a radio play as someone being sick, I began to record myself.

But before I could properly record myself there were things to consider. I needed a format that would make me stand out above the hordes of other entries. The job was with a local radio station where most of the coverage is Wolves and Albion, so in my infinite wisdom I opted for the five best goals scored by Wolves or Albion players since I was born (June 1990, fact fans). From fifth to first they were the following:

Kevin Muscat – Wolves vs Ipswich December 1998; Artim Sakiri – West Brom vs Burnley August 2003; Andy Thompson – Wolves vs Birmingham sometime in 1995; Darren Bradley – West Brom vs Wolves September 1993; Kevin Phillips – West Brom vs Wolves May 2007.

Apart from the obvious bias included in the last two goals I was pretty happy with that list. Kevin Muscat even made it into the list without GBHing anyone. Once this aspect was sorted I began to record.

Watching the goals back on youtube, I tried to synchronise my monosyllabic screams and grunts with the actions taking place. But it wasn’t working. I needed a script. The need of a script worried me though, because I knew the greats like Steve Bower and Jim Proudfoot don’t work from scripts. A reaction to a goal can’t be prompted. It’s instinctive. But sitting in my bedroom, waiting for cars to drive past so my phone didn’t pick them up, I had too much time to think about it. Words would make me feel better about it. They weren’t going to know I’d prompted myself as much as I was planning on. Until I turned up to a broadcast of Wolves vs Blackburn with every feasible outcome scripted.

Off I went again, more shouting into a phone but this time with a little more focus and less swearing.

Even with the assistance of words on a page, though, there was one thing I couldn’t shake: feeling like a twat. With every individual recording my voice peaked higher and higher at the sight of a goal. I wasn’t commentating but shrieking. When I tried to calm it down I sounded like I couldn’t give a shit, which for goals 5 and 3 would be a fair assessment. I decided I’d leave it for another day when I felt less self conscious and when the neighbours couldn’t hear me.

The other day never came. I gave up, admitted I wasn’t cut out for football commentary and called it quits. I almost, almost, found a new respect for Peter Drury. One thing I did do, though, was keep the recordings I made. I have posted them below so you can listen and laugh. In this search for any employer that will have me we might as well eke out any humour where possible.

By now someone else will have got this job. If you find this entry congratulations! On getting the job, not finding my blog. You have two things I am envious of: the gig and the ability to to not feel like a twat. But seriously, well done.

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