What a night

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Last night I was working on the audio description team for my local football team Plymouth Argyle, as they won their Football League 2 playoff semi-final against Portsmouth, to win a place in the final at Wembley on May 30th. After commentating on the team through years of downfall from the Championship to League 2 it was great to finally have a night of success at our ground Home Park.

It has been twenty years since we were last at Wembley and our fans are dreaming of Wembley success again this year. Very rarely is our home ground a sellout for a game and that is a shame, as it is always such a great atmosphere when it is.

I was there

The game last night wasn’t a classic by any stretch, but that didn’t matter in a way. When that final whistle blew nobody cared about how good the game was, everyone was just rejoicing and joining together in a proud moment for the team, the fans and the city. It was a night that will be looked back on in years to come, where everyone there will be able to say I was there that night Argyle won their way to Wembley.

It’s the collective experience that makes football I think. A ton of fans, in one space, living through the emotions of the game, for one common cause. People may not have known the people sat around them last night, but they joined in together cheering the team on and I am sure although they might not have got their names, they will remember their faces in their minds when they look back on this day.

Something that isn’t tangible

When so many people in one space are happy, you can just feel something, something that isn’t tangible but it is there. A feel good feeling just goes right through you and for a moment all of the worries in life don’t exist and you are allowed a moment of pure jubilation.

I am hoping beyond any hope that we win at Wembley but whatever happens nobody will be able to take last night and its place in history away. Thanks to the players and everyone who attended last night’s game, you made the experience. Through all of us we all have a reason to be happy and optimistic today, last night something was accomplished that will hopefully lead to greater things for the players, fans and city.

Feeling Privileged

Last Sunday I had the pleasure of being able to go to Wembley Stadium and do Audio Description for the NFL International Series game, between Miami Dolphins and the Oakland Raiders for Alan March Sport Ltd.

Thanks to good friends and hard work I have been afforded many great opportunities in life and this is one of them. It is such a privileged position to be able to work at an event that many have paid vast sums of money to attend, to be able to contribute to the event is such an amazing feeling.

This Saturday I will be far away from the glitz and glamour of Wembley and the NFL, I will be at Home Park home of Plymouth Argyle who currently play in League 2 the lowest league of professional football (soccer) in England, doing Audio Description on their game with Shrewsbury. With less than 10% of the crowd size that attended Wembley the game on all levels will be completely different.

The size of the event doesn’t change the fact that I am in a privileged position again getting to attend a game that many will pay to go to and doing a job that many others would like to do. Plymouth Argyle is where I started doing Audio Description and now 6 years in, I make sure to remember the feeling I got when I first got the position and did my first game.

Going to live sporting events is exciting and having the privilege to be involved them makes it all that much better. I think it is important that no matter what we do or achieve that we don’t belittle it and that we celebrate it. If you’re proud of something don’t be afraid to be proud of it and don’t justify how you feel by the size or scope of what you do.

Happiness and Sadness

A little while back I blogged about how hard life can be for some people and how unequipped some people are to deal with life.

Since that blog we have had the sad news of the death of actor Robin Williams. The world has been touched by his life and death, Robin was renowned for his ability to make millions around the world smile and laugh with his body of work but the way of his passing has brought many to tears.

Success doesn’t mean that life is easy. Success should never be counted as the fame someone achieves or the money they make but how they deal with the day to day realities of life. Even the most so called “successful” people need help and support.

As humans we are good at showing different sides of ourselves to different people. It seems sometimes in life the hardest thing is to be honest as to be honest requires a lot of bravery. I think we as the human race take things at face value a lot of the time and don’t want to see the signs that other people may be struggling. We don’t take the time to actually invest in people, to make sure they are ok in all aspects of their life. I think many of us our scared to go up to someone and ask them if they are ok.

I think when things like this happen like unexpected deaths it makes me appreciate the smaller things in life and reminds me again how important happiness is. One instance of this happened to me this weekend that I would like to share:

I was walking away from Home Park home of English football team Plymouth Argyle after commentating on their 3 – 0 win over local rivals Exeter. As I was walking I noticed a disabled fan with a Plymouth hat, coat and scarf on and he had the broadest smile and was waving his Plymouth scarf in the air with reckless abandon. I don’t know the man I saw but I can only imagine the hardships he had faced in his life but for that moment that experience made his day and I have to say it made my day too. I think we all need to be a bit more appreciative of what we have and the things we take for granted.