620. Jim hated rugby

© Bruce Goodman 22 June 2015


Jim hated rugby. He went to an all-boys secondary school, where rugby was compulsory. In a single season rugby would turn a boy into a man.

Jim hated the violent tackles, the scrums, the rucking. He hated the aggression.

“Make yourself angry,” said the coach, “and you’ll play better.”

Jim hated the culture that went with it; the brouhaha, the ruckus, the hubbub that excitedly surrounded those in the top teams.

“There’s one of them now! There he goes! Let me touch him!” It’s like everyone in the school except Jim was a latent homosexual, and yet the inference was that the gay life was Jim’s preference because he hated rugby. He hated rugby, the queer.

Jim hated the mud, the smell of liniment, the boots, the sprigs. He hated the showers after the game, fifteen young guys all crammed into the open shower unit. He hated the talk.

“Yours is bigger than mine,” like they wanted to borrow it or something. “Fuck yeah.”

Jim hated the whole damn thing. He loathed school because of it. He dreaded life for the fifteen weeks of the season. Boy into man… boy into man…


One day a scrum collapsed and Jim broke his neck.

The school was shocked, chastened, mortified. They consoled themselves. All teams wore black armbands the following week. Jim’s obituary read:

He died doing something we all love.

18 thoughts on “620. Jim hated rugby

    1. Bruce Goodman Post author

      I gave up on watching professional sport. Why watch a group of people work? (In fact these days I don’t even own a tv). I always thought rugby in particular fulfilled the players’ homoerotic tendencies…

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Bruce Goodman Post author

      And unfortunately for those of us educated in the ’60s, very true! When I went to school the top rugby team were cooked dinner at midday with steaks and eggs and everything under the sun. We ate our dry jam sandwiches!

      Liked by 2 people


Please feel free to spout, tout, flout, sprout, pout, or simply say something sensible

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s