What A Shocker When I Heard About The Last Ever Mag
Well what a shocker that was a few days ago!
Got my cornies, orange juice, tea and toast sorted as usual and thought right champion, where`s that envelope with the latest issue of The Mag.
Great cover shot but perplexed at “Thank You and Goodnight”, what`s that all about? The transfer window’s well past so it can`t be anything to do with that. Well you could have knocked me down with a feather; gutted, heartbroken, I don`t believe it, the end of an era indeed.
I can still vividly recall the excitement of buying issue One. Was on holiday somewhere and read in the press that a new toon fanzine had just been launched and was available at all good retailers. Landed at the toon on a Saturday night a few days later and remember rushing to W H Smith a few minutes before nine. One of the ladies was heading for the roller shutter to close up for the night but I just made it to grab my copy.
That was it, hooked, it`s sad to say but I can honestly say that I`ve read every page of every Mag.
I`ve never kept any of them after reading them apart from the cover of issue 29 which is still pinned up in my garden shed. It`s headed up with those famous words “Always Look on The Bright Side of Life” and shows the old division 2 table with the toon sitting at the very bottom in 24th place W 1 D 4 L 6 and with our friends the mackems in 13th place and our friends the smoggies at the very top. And inside on page two I can still remember were printed the words “Well we made it, we finally got there, the bottom of division 2!”
With work commitments I got into the habit of saving my Mags for my holiday reading. If I wasn`t snoozing on a plane or a sunbed I was reading a Mag. I was never comfortable with just ditching the old ones so got into the habit of leaving the finished ones at the hotel reception or library area and even left the odd one in a drawer or on the top of a wardrobe as a wee surprise for the next incumbent.
Remember once staying at a villa and had a parking altercation with a neighbour so before leaving early one morning stuck a couple through his letterbox as a present. He was a Spaniard so not sure what he would have made of them. Many years later a good work colleague and big Hearts supporter was always keen on getting his fix of my Mags and I always like to think that I got him converted to following the toon as his second team.
I say I`ve read every Mag but strictly that’s not true, as over the years I`ve got a bit behind with them to the extent that currently I`m only halfway through the December 12 issue so happily I`ve still 15 more to work through!
Fittingly the last Mag article I read before the news broke was Chris Tait’s piece which included reference to his visit to the Concentration Camps. A brilliant and very profound piece of writing and as he rightly says, puts everything into context. Football’s only a game, it`s only entertainment and we should never lose sight of that. Getting behind with them has certainly had its advantages though, as we had already been promoted back to the Premiership before I had to go through the trauma of reading of our relegation!
I`ve very much enjoyed reading the pieces by all of the regular contributors and in particular Tyne Talk by Mark Jensen, plus everything by Chris Tait and of course Billy *******,Furious. In one of my very rare contributions and during a festive period I can recall referring to them as the three wise men of the toon.
Also, I`ve very much enjoyed reading Alan Candlish and his toon through the ages and similar articles.
I`ll also always be indebted to my good friend “The Anorak” who not only helped reunite me with my first SJP visit, Huddersfield Town January 1962 (Barrie Thomas home debut), he also very kindly sent me the newspaper cuttings of the match reports from the following day.
I`ll continue to follow the mag online but still hope that one day it may return in a paper version.
Special Offer – To celebrate the new and final issue of The Mag we are offering FREE UK postage on this last issue, click HERE and you can order this final (collectors!) issue for only the £3 cover price.
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