Richmond, A User’s Manual, Second Edition
RAUM, Second Edition
Footy is hyped up. Footy becomes locked into grand narratives. But footy remains personal, individual, idiosyncratic and subject to the whims of everyday life.
Histories of footy clubs relate to the histories of the suburbs which they occupy. Demographics change. Shops change. Being inner suburban was once a burden: now, it is attractive. Upward mobility. The stench of Richmond’s tanneries has long gone.
This club, on Wurundjeri Country, which plays in the monolithic AFL, has a newly formed relationship with a club in Yorta Yorta Country. How does this club regard its social role?
I go to a game trying to forget the traumas of previous seasons. I go to a game trying to ignore the hype and expectations slowly building around this Yellow-Sash-on-Black Club. This club that is characterised by its two stars of the Devout and Muscle-Clad Alex and the Neck-Tattooed Dusty.
I slowly read books of hagiography about the Club’s legends. Players and coaches of when the Club participated in that league of Yesteryear: the Victorian Football League. Yes, they are legends; indeed because many of us never saw it happen and have only heard about the actions through stories told at pubs or endlessly on footy shows. These books too carry the small details that can be puzzled back together to form new narratives.
Wayne paints pictures: football grounds in rowdy regional landscapes; telling stories of peoples and places. Spaces in which games erupt and narratives collide.
What makes the chronology of this club? One thing happened and then another and then another. The lives of fans, the club’s administrators, its sponsors, its jumpers.
RAUM Second Edition: available now. $5. Handmade. Sans gambling sponsorship. Hand-sewn. Inclusive of clippings and colouring pages.