That Old Boy Attitude

Rugby gets in the blood. It's one of those games that players hang around indecently long, playing into their forties and fifties and beyond for just one more sniff of the try line and one more raised glass.

And once it's in the blood, it changes you. Makes you irrational, carried away by what has now become a life-long passion. The longer you've been playing, the more of that little-bit-crazy you've got.

I hear conversations like the one I'm about to relate all the time, but today I was struck with the thought that this actually is a remarkable thing that the non-rugby playing public might be interested in. You know, as an example of how far love can take a man.

Today after a match I sat down on the bench to take my cleats off. Two old boys were on their feet in front of me, putting their kit away. This is what they said to each other.

"I just thank God I've gotten all the way to forty-four without any injuries."



"There was that one time you hurt your neck in California."

"Oh, yeah."


"You know, the same thing happened to me in Charlotte."


That's the old boy attitude. It can make it seem like you've never been hurt. But you have been. Remember that one time? And that other?