Alright? Let’s not sugar coat it, lads. I’m writing today with the cold, callous fingertips of a fairweather Luton fan. Maybe the worst one.
I honestly couldn’t, with 100% certainty, pronounce Štěch or Rea, or tell you, in civilian dress, which one Mullins is. I don’t know how the Danny Hylton Earth Wind and Fire song really starts, although I know how it doesn’t. Consider me Kenilworthless.
It wasn’t always like this of course. I was just like you. Our mood and general disposition, yours and mine, once synchronised around the ball-kicking ball-ache theatre of lower league football mercenaries. Not now.
Now I’m Nathan Jones’ Tourist Army. Day-tripping to Town like your enthusiastic but ultimately unbearable mate from work, in admittedly better trainers. I’m the ghostly shadow of the former TVs in the Whitehouse, I know that. What I wanted to say though, was this.
After climbing the seven million steps to row Z of Mount Kili-way-aye-man-jaro the other week I was, when my heartrate subsided and in the throws of EPL vertigo, struck by something.
The best part of eight thousand had made the trip. From the back I could see you all. Various stages of life, love and inebriation picked out by an inexplicably friendly winter sun. It was a bit different up there, eh? For men and women who once geared up for Welling (a).
I thought back to a comparable scene in 2000-and-summink when a fair few fewer of us had made the trip to Anfield Road to witness a far less keenly contested attempt at FA Cup history on the day 2020 secured their takeover of Luton Town Football club, becoming custodians of a little bit of you and me.
Ten years on from Liverpool five Luton nil, not only were most of us still knocking about but on our heels are hordes of young, hopelessly-Luton reprobates still longing for the glimpses of Lutopian sunshine through the fickle fog of football.
The decade that followed hasn’t been our most glamourous, for some (not you, granted), it’s all you’ve ever known; but it may in the grand scheme of things turn out to be the most important in the club’s history. With the current set up it’s hard to remember a time with so much light and so little tunnel.
In a world where the status quo looks about as healthy as a Watford trophy cabinet, the sight of the scorned youth of Bedfordshire taking over the Toon, and bellowing till their blood vessels bulge at the Hatters Of Kenilworth Road soothes even the most pessimistic soul.
Because even when (especially when) you can’t be there, the knowledge that somewhere this Saturday and the next there are hundreds of Lutoners donning replica shirts or definitely-not-replica Stone Island jackets in the name of this-thing-of-ours means that the bit of you, no matter where you are, that only exists in orange, black and white is alive and well. A bit chubby if anything.
Up the fucking Town