Grandad Makes a Scene. By CpSingleton © 2016
‘That’s it, son! Get yer foot in!’ My Grandad Huntstable could be heard bellowing from the touchline. As he did every game I was lucky enough to be picked for the school team.
One particular day, I remember that it was throwing it down and windy, I was in defence with another boy called Liam Stoppard. I can’t remember who we were playing, but we were down too nil, which only compounded the misery I felt.
To be fair I wasn’t a great defender. I basically obstructed the opposition and tried my best to kick their legs off, but Liam was even worse. Whenever the ball came near him he ran in the opposite direction. More so if the other team’s attacker was coming at him.
Grandad was on the touchline in his favourite, oversized anorak, drenched, looking like one of those little creatures from Star Wars.
The only thing that differentiated him from those robot stealers was his voice, shouting instructions.
He became apoplectic though when Mr Burrows, our PE teacher, subbed me and not Liam.
‘What in god’s name are you doing, you idiot? Don’t you want to win the damned game?’
I was quite happy to put on a dry coat, to be honest.
Mr Burrows strode over to confront my grandad, which was a stupendous mistake.
‘I am the manager of this team, sir,’ I heard Burrows telling grandad.
‘Then you need sacking,’ Grandad spat back. ‘You know nothing.’
‘And I suppose you used to play for England did you?’ Burrows replied smugly to my little swaying grand-patriarch.
Just then the ball flew towards grandad, who stopped it on his chest, rolled it down his body, performed several knee ups and then several kick ups, before flicking it deftly into his own outstretched little arm.
The entire field stopped in awe. I was so proud.
I just wonder what expression he wore under that hood. I bet he was grinning his best toothless grin.
Mr Burrows never challenged my grandad again.