12+ It's the final, the siren to end the game is due any moment, and the ball tumbles goalwards. Our supporters roar, willing the ball to be straight and true, though some, like me, hold their breath. A goal will win the game for our team.
For a few seconds, while the ball is in the air, while we roar and hold our breath, our team has neither won nor lost.
And then it happens, the ball falls short, the other team gathers it, and their supporters roar. The siren sounds, their supporters roar louder and our supporters fall silent.
Yet later, when I dream of those final few seconds, that cursed ball tumbles on through the goals. It is our supporters who roar the loudest. We are the champions. And though I know it's only a dream, I'm filled with joy.
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So if I'm tossing and turning in bed, don't shake my shoulder, leave me sleeping. There is no need to wake me up.
© 2000 Robert Fairhead
A middle-aged dad and dog owner, Robert Fairhead is an editor and writer at Tall And True, and blogs on his eponymous website, RobertFairhead.com.
His favourite pastimes include reading and writing, walking his dog, and watching Aussie Rules Football with his son. He is also a part-time dog trainer and runs classes at his local dog training club and through Robert's Responsible Dog Training.
Robert has worked as an electrician, a computer programmer, and a sales and marketing consultant, and he is the principal copywriter at Rocher Communications.
His book reviews and writing on dogs have appeared in newspapers and online. And in 2020, he published a collection of short stories, Both Sides of the Story.
Robert has also enjoyed a one-night stand as a stand-up comic.
Another short, short story, written for a local radio competition, to include the tag line, There is no need to wake up.