I spent most of Saturday afternoon deliberately avoiding the score. It was a gloriously sunny day and I'd already spent most of the morning with my eldest cleaning the car, as we both avoided the likely carnage caused by my youngest having a 4 year old friend round to play (actually it all went remarkably well, but at least we got the car sparkling!). In the afternoon we invaded my neighbour's garden to chop back what was left of an old Italian vine which had laid claim to my garage roof for some time. Having cut off as much as we could from our side of the garden, my neighbour was only too pleased to have us come round and finish off the job from his side.
We did really well, the garage looks much tidier and my neighbour has more light. My eldest was again really keen to help (it had been his enthusiasm to go up ladders and hack things down that had got me started on the whole thing in the first place) and was very industrious as the four of us cleared away the dead vine. The potential metaphor for Fulham's predicament was not lost on me. I had taken a sneaky check of the scores and was already aware that we were a goal down. Later my son popped home to check on his younger brother and returned with the news that we were now two down and both Birmingham and Bolton were winning. The "R" word flash in front of my eyes and I went back to sweeping up sticks.
Job done Mrs Chopper went home to get the tea on whilst my son continued an ongoing Tiger Woods Golf tournament on my neighbour's PlayStation. I had a couple of beers while they played out an exciting nine holes and I put all thoughts of football scores far from my mind. Game over, my son narrowly defeated on the final hole, and we returned home for tea. Mrs C mentioned my Dad had called about the game and said it had finished 3-2. I naturally assumed we'd lost after a gallant fight back. It was a good half hour before I went to check the scores and realised we won. My God! We won!! A quick check of the other scores to see that Birmingham, Bolton and Reading had all drawn and a look at the table to see if my maths were correct - Yes! Yes, Yes, Yes!!! We're still in it, we're still alive, we're still hanging on by the skin of our teeth! Bloody YES!!!!!!!!!
Of course this inevitably raises our hopes of a miracle escape which might make our failure to do so hurt even more. This weekend's game against Birmingham is going to be as tense as they come for both teams, it's unlikely to be one we can sit back and enjoy, but I'm just pleased we've still got something to fight and cheer for.