Around the country this weekend, many of us will be cranking up the barbecues, switching on the television, and yelling at muscly men in small shorts as they kick/throw/handball a ball around for a few hours.
For many of us, this is the culmination of months of cheering, of closely following the highs and lows of our teams and waiting until the two best teams of the league were the only ones left.
Of course, I concede that for many others, the two major sporting fixtures of this weekend mean absolutely nothing. But for the sake of being social, many of those who think the Sharks are taking on the Bulldogs this weekend will nevertheless turn up to a pub or stand in someone’s backyard and drink beers while feeling very confused by what they’re watching. To help you out, here are a few phrases to get you through an AFL grand final barbecue:
“Do you think Buddy will kick a bag today?”
Bring this one out early, as it will become obvious pretty soon whether or not Lance “Buddy” Franklin kicks a bag of goals or not (he almost definitely will).
“It’s such a shame about Bob Murphy/Aliir Aliir/other players who are missing the game due to injury”
This is an easy one and if you know what team your interlocutor supports, try and use a player from their team. Swans fans don’t care who is missing from the Doggies and vice versa.
“It’s a scandal about the tickets for the grand final, isn’t it?”
If you drop this one into conversation, pay attention to the reply. The scandals when it comes to tickets to the grand final are many — the lack of availability for fans of the competing clubs, the failure of ticketing websites to keep up with demand earlier in the week.
“Chewy on your boot!”
This is what we say as opposing players line up to kick for goal. It basically means that you wish they had chewing gum on their shoe, causing them to miss the shot.
“Well at least the music is better than Meatloaf!”
We haven’t even seen what Sting, The Living End or Vance Joy have to offer yet, but there’s no way it could be worse than what Meatloaf served up in 2011.
And when it comes to an NRL function, well, I’ve got nothing to help you there. If anyone has any suggestions for me to fake my way through during Sunday’s match between the Cronulla Sharks and the Melbourne Storm, let us know in the comments.