Once upon a time a big fat man, a big fat rich man, from London bought a football club. It was situated in a Great Northern City a long way from London, but the big fat rich man liked ‘footie’, liked a night out with his mates and a few beers.

He had heard that many of the tribespeople who lived in this Great Northern City also liked footie, having a night out and drinking a few(!) beers. He thought this would all be a big laugh and a change from making hundreds of millions of pounds from his business.

newcastle united fansTo help him enjoy himself he put lots of his mates into positions of importance in the football club. The fact that they knew very little about football and even less about the Great Northern City didn’t really matter. They would all be having a laugh, going out at night and having a few beers – they might even join in with some of the locals, even though they wouldn’t be able to understand a word they said.

Well at first things didn’t go too badly, but as happens in all football clubs, the wheels began to fall off the bogey. When this happened, the big fat rich man from London was surprised; disappointed even, to discover that the laughing, the going out at night and having a few beers with the local tribespeople no longer seemed such a good idea. In fact the locals turned very nasty and began to call him rude names, some of which even he could understand.

Sadly for the big fat rich man from London and tragically for the tribespeople of the Great Northern City, what he had totally failed to understand was that the football club, which superficially provided an excuse for having a laugh, going out with your mates and having a few beers, was also the home of a Shrine where the locals, surrounded by their invisible but ever present ancestors, gathered to worship.

For over a hundred and twenty years this tribe had been led by Great Men, whose names were remembered and revered even to this day; men like Veitch, Gallacher, Milburn, Robson. Their latest hero, Shearer, is still with them even now.

This tribe had once led the world in many activities; hewing coal, building ships, engineering and playing football. They were also renowned fighters, famous throughout the world.

Other big fat rich men from London had already deprived them of their coal mines, their shipyards, their engineering works, their regiments, and all they had left to worship now at their Shrine were their memories and their football team. This was the last enduring link with their ancestors, with their heritage, with everything that gave meaning to their lives.

When they realised that none of this meant anything to the big fat rich man from London, who could not even understand their language, let alone their religion, the tribe in this Great Northern City was in despair. He had treated them as fools.The humiliation was more than the natives could stand. The Shrine had been desecrated once too often by the big fat rich man from London. After February 1st 2014 they turned.

A Geordie.