This game has a cradle to grave legacy on families, it decides the planning of social/family occasions, and usually comes with the typical Melbourne greeting of "What's ya name?, and who do you follow in the footy?"
At one stage, with eleven competing clubs in inner urban Melbourne and the other from regional Geelong, most, if not all original home grounds were serviced by nearby tram routes at one stage, as with time the completion expanded, some clubs (South Melbourne, Fitzroy) relocated to Sydney and Brisbane, other franchises were started in Adelaide and Perth, then western Sydney and the Gold Coast.
Suburban grounds while they still exist in the hearts and memories of the tribal enclaves of the city, games are now played at either the iconic MCG and/or Docklands(insert sponsor's name here) Stadium at staggered times to suit the needs of the prime time television god, a long way from six games on a Saturday afternoon broadcast on competing AM stations.
The tramways must of had some real fun and games trying to co-ordinate extra services to and from these games all starting and finishing at roughly the same times, so here is my homage to those blokes who punched services, cut notches and punched tickets.
A typical Saturday afternoon in Melbourne,
A Football special short shunting on Victoria St.
So to the competing clubs today, Hawthorn, 5km east of Melbourne, entered the competition in 1925 and won their first flag in 1961 (against Footscray*, darn it! ) now going for their 11th flag, versus Fremantle, so far west from Melbourne that they face the Indian Ocean, entered the caper in 1994 going for their first. (*I am not a fan of Hawthorn)
From in front of the tele, and under the wires.