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Thank You, Dad!

By Adam  Cunliffe :  14/06/2008 :  Comments (14) :
Well, Fathers Day is coming up and I thought it would be an appropriate time to say thanks to my Dad for doing something to me that has been quite literally life changing. I remember coming home from school when I was about 6 or 7 and waiting for the bus. I said something to my Dad which made his face go red in embarrassment.

?Daddy.? I said.
?What?? He replied...
?I'm going to support Liverpool like my friend Matthew. Isn't that good.?

Needless to say, he wasn't very happy at all. I got on the bus wondering why my Dad was so quiet. It was when I got home that he gave me the life changing talk that I will never forget.

?Adam, why do you want to support the shi... I mean Liverpool??He asked
?They have Owen and Fowler and they score lots of goals.?I said back.
?Do you know that Owen and Fowler actually support Everton like Daddy, not Liverpool.?
?Really what about Gerrard?? I replied, amazed by this stunning fact.
?Rumour has it that he does to.?
?Honestly. Wow.?I said.

I went upstairs after that, confused as to who to support. Most people did support Liverpool and a team known just as United but my Daddy liked Everton. Later on that day I asked him a more direct question. A bit like Sir Alan Sugar asking a candidate why he should hire him.

?Why should I support Everton.? I said ?Why are they better than Liverpool??
?See Adam, at Everton they give out sweets.?

That was my Dad's ace card. His face lit up when he saw me smile at the prospect of being given sweets. He had me hook line and sinker with that one. "Sweets and Football. Does it get any better?" I thought.

I asked him to take me to a game but he said I was too young and might not like the shouting. So I asked my Grandad to take me. Wait and see he told me. And true to his word on my Dad's birthday on the 10th of January 2002 my Grandad bought me, my Dad, my two older brothers and himself a ticket for the game against Sunderland on the Saturday. To say I was exited was an understatement.

I was up all night trying to memorise the words to ?If You Know Your History? which my dad had been trying to teach me on Friday night. I wore my new One2One Everton kit and my legs were freezing as stupidly I put the shorts on as well.

When we parked up on the shared car park on Stanley Park I looked towards Anfield and said, ?Is that where we're going??
?That's the dirty ground,? my older brother Mike replied.
?However 100 years or so ago we'd of been going there.? my Grandad butted in.

Puzzled about that last statement I asked my Dad what Grandad meant by that. Was he losing his marbles? Then my Dad told me all about the creation story. Not the one in the bible, this one was much more important. He told how if it wasn't for Everton, Liverpool wouldn't be here and how we won the league at Anfield way before Liverpool were even born.

I immediately knew I'd made the right decision and I walked past the statue of Dixie, down the Bullens Road and to the Glawdys Street. My Dad bought me a programme (which I still have in a shoe box along with my match ticket.) and we took our place in the back of the Lower Glawdys.

I later discovered that my Dad had lied to me and I wasn't very happy about. It was "red shites" not "red side" and "fuck" not "heck". He told me the wrong lyrics but I joined in all the same. And when Jasper Blomquivst scored his only goal for us, I cheered so much I was hoarse the next morning.

We had a cracking day and from that day forward I've been proud to call myself an Evertonian for the last 7 years. It's an honour to be a part of the greatest football institution of all time. My knowledge on all things Everton has developed no end since and I take a pride in knowing my history.

However, my dad and I do have differing opinions on the stadium debate. He thinks it will move us forward but I think that it's not right for the future of our club. But did we get a chance to say so? No we didn't because we don't have season tickets.

No matter what things we differ on, I will be forever thankful to my dad for what he has given me. So he says Yes, I say No... but whatever happens he will always have what he calls a perfect record. 4 and 0 as the Yanks say. 4 kids, 4 Evertonians. He isn't all bad then I suppose.

Reader Comments

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Jay Harris
1   Posted 14/06/2008 at 18:53:30

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Nice story Adam and it goes to show that the split in the fans over Kirkby is not just down to Evertonians that dont know each other.

This split in the fans over this Kirkby thing, the failure to maintain GP and Kings Dock fiasco are amongst a number of things I can never forgive BK for.

He never had any reason to lie, it's not as if most supporters were against him, but for me he is a compulsive liar and a charlatan posing in Blue.
Lee Penswick
2   Posted 15/06/2008 at 12:59:00

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Whatever happened to being born a blue and not manufactured? :)

EJ Ruane
3   Posted 15/06/2008 at 13:43:52

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Hope he has a good day Adam (although I’m with you on the ground thing).

Lee, you do realise that ’born not manufactured’ thing is just something that sounds good don’t you?

It’s just hyperbole.

I mean, it can’t be REALLY real, otherwise..well I’m fairly sure there would have been some kind of documentary made about it.

Doesn’t mean we can’t say it though (or even think it) especially as it seems to upset those currently test-driving ’One City one Team’.

Robert Jones
4   Posted 15/06/2008 at 16:15:28

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I was nearly born blue EJ, my dad had me in a kit before I’d even opened my eyes lol
Rob Heaton
5   Posted 15/06/2008 at 16:31:13

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EJ - Not sure about Hyperbole.

I?m from Crewe, my family hate footy, my mates support Liverpool, Utd or Crewe and since I was born in ?82 I was too young to remember the best days of the mid 80?s.

If I wasn?t born to be a blue why the hell do I support them?
Gary Hall
6   Posted 16/06/2008 at 08:09:30

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And yes just think of the years of torture your father has given you at the hands of the bastards.
Barry Sherlock
7   Posted 16/06/2008 at 14:25:38

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Good piece.

I had a similar conversation with my 7yr old son. I told him he was born to be blue. He said he wanted to choose. My wife’s family are all kopites and I knew they had been filling he’s head with crap. So I let him watch the red sh*te on the telly. They got beaten by Arsenal. Then I took him to his first match. Paid out for hats and scarves and lots of sweets & choc. Well needles to say he is now an Evertonian through and through.

It’s important to keep the tradition going.
Ron Leith
8   Posted 16/06/2008 at 20:43:47

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My first game at GP was in 1970 I was 10 and we beat WBA to win the league. I was at GP when we beat Wmbledon to stay up and have been a season ticket holder for yonks. I have seen us at the top and almost at the bottom. The one thing that will keep us at the wrong end of the table is a lack of ambition because we can not face up to change. It is hard moving on but the memories will count for nothing if we never again are able to challenge for top honours. Thos people who call BK and KW for trying to free EFC from the inertia that affects some fans will be the end of our club. Show a little faith and get EFC on a level playing field. The KEIOC stuff is the biggest millstone around our clubs neck If I was Moyes I would think seriously about signing a contract if KEIOC get the result they want-stagnation.
Monty Carlo
9   Posted 17/06/2008 at 08:55:52

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My dad was a red and my brothers are reds too - and when they were playing at home he used to take them to game.

But he was a real football fan and allowed me to make my own choices, so when I opted for the Blues he would take me to Goodison every other week.

Liverpool fans of this calibre are in short supply these days - although they do exist.
Chris Lawlor
10   Posted 18/06/2008 at 11:02:27

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Great read Adam. Reminds me of my child hood. Being from Cork where everyone either supports the Shite or Utd, I was the lone bastion of Blue in sea of red. Did it bother me, did it hell!

My arl fella is a red, as are my siblings but my bedroom walls were wall to ceiling covered in images of Goodison’s sons past and present all taken from SHOOT and MATCH. If the missus allowed me, our study would look pretty similar in my own house now!

Being an Evertonian is what being a football fan is all about, the highs and lows, the utter pride and the downright disillusion, but more than this is the overall feeling that no matter how the team is performing or what is going on in the boardroom, there is a warm feeling inside that comes from our own knowledge that we Blues are a different class. Here’s to next season!
Gavin Ramejkis
11   Posted 18/06/2008 at 11:06:52

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I was at Ormskirk hospital this week for the birth of my second son who will be a blue like the rest of us, the bed next to my wife had a visit from her inbreds, luckily the curtains were drawn and I had to bite my lip at the stupidity emanating from them. Then the girl’s Dad and another of her relatives possibly her brother started the usual RS pish about different mottos including ours which the thick twats reckon means "win nottin" - yes real quality the two of them, they got "better than a fat, bitter, Spanish waiter back through the curtain". So my kids will know that blues simply are head and shoulders above that inbred shower of kickbacks that never cease to bring a smile.
Sean Allinson
12   Posted 18/06/2008 at 12:03:36

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I have always felt a veiled sense of guilt about not giving my children a choice in who they supported. The entire family for generations have been pure bread Blues going all the way back to my great uncle who actually played in the 1906 Cup Final. Not one blemish on a genetic record stretching back to the beginning of the club. So I thought it only right that my off-spring should continue the family tradition. Yet I still felt guilty.
Last season at the Fiorentina home game, I stood waiting for the penalty shoot-out to start. I felt a kiss on my cheek. I turned round to see my son grinning from ear to ear. ’Thanks for making me an Evertonian Dad’, he said.
As we all know we lost, but somehow it didn’t seem to matter. To me something much more significant had happened.
Jobs a good’n.
Denis Byrne
13   Posted 20/06/2008 at 12:02:58

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Really nice piece Adam and interesting point about the ’born blue’ thing.
My kids were bron and brought up in Brighton but both are proud Evertonians. They are often slaughtered at school by the usual chelskiredshitegoonersmanure mob about their allegiance. I was talking to them about this during a trip to game and their response was as follows -

"Well, the first thing I say to them dad is, ’so, how long have you been suporting chelskiredshitegoonersmanure?’, and they say ’since i was 7’ and then I say,
’lighweight, I was born an Evertonian!’ and then tell them we won our first league title at Anfiled, and they say we are liars and we tell ’em ’ google it lightweight and get to know a bit of history before you talk to a proper football supporter’ ", Yeh, go’ed, I LOVE my kids!

Alex Baker
14   Posted 23/06/2008 at 14:40:04

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I live in Reading, and am surrounded by the usual ’sky 4’ supporters every day. I’m 16 and still go to school, and have had the crap beaten out of me on many occasions for supporting the mighty blues. But even at my very lowest, I have never even considered being anything other than an Everton fan. Who’d ever want to support a team with that arsehole Rafa in charge?

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