That's how the light gets in

Darren Hind 27/01/2022 35comments  |  Jump to last
As weeks go, the one we have just suffered is right up there with the one which followed the 1986 FA Cup Final. It's been horrible.

Evertonians are suffering. Their beloved club is floundering. The tidal wave of hope which rose and swept the club (perhaps unfairly) when it was announced that Duncan Ferguson would be in charge of the team when we faced Aston Villa, had subsided before the day was out.

There was a feeling of helplessness. The fans could do no more. They had shouted themselves hoarse. If we are honest, I think most Evertonians have always believed that the unique atmosphere we are able to create at the Old Lady would always come to our aid in our hour of need... It always has done.

We were silent after the Villa game. Worried that we had done our best and it wasn't enough, but come Monday the silence had given way to anger and rage. We weren't having this... Somebody has to pay!

ToffeeWeb first came to my attention when a mate of mine drew attention to an article written by Colin Fitzpatrick. I doubt anybody who visited this site back then would ever forget it. what a stir it caused. The article was unlike anything I had read before.

Sure, we had all been critical of what went on behind closed doors at Goodison Park, especially where Philip "The Park End doesn't need a second tier" Carter was concerned... but here was an ordinary Evertonian openly questioning the actions of the Goodison hierarchy and, in particular, the chairman.

What made this article so unique at the time was the author wasn't interested in firing blanks. Unlike much of the criticism we had seen in the past. Colin had done his homework.

The threat of Destination Kirby came and I wondered if Colin's article had had the opposite effect from the one he was looking for. Others began to question Bill Kenwright... even to his face. His now legendary matadorial skills were being tested to the limit. These younger Blues were informed. Unlike their arl fellas, they were not content to vent their anger by throwing cushions. They wanted answers.

Bill took to the hills. He didn't have the answers so (with a fair degree of success) he tried to prevent the questions. Getting information from inside Goodison was becoming nigh on impossible. The actor was now a politician - think Putin rather than Bojo. The fan - club relationship sunk without trace.

What a mish-mash of a club we have become. A chairman who slips between the shadows as easily as the rest of us draw breath... and an owner who regularly contacts TalkShite to wash our dirty fuckwittery in public. We are a laughing stock.

I said earlier that, for me at least, this has been one of Everton's darkest weeks, but I have found hope. I found it right here on these very pages. ToffeeWeb has been a wonderful place to come to lick your wounds.

The emergence of John Daley from his 2-year coma set the tone. What a skilled writer he is. Christine has been on fire. Lyndon seems to have discarded the gloves. Posters I had not noticed before are weighing in.

One of the stand-out posters for me has been Simon Harrison. His post was like an episode of Line of Duty. Who doesn't want to know who Q is? Then of course we had Gerard McKean's in-the-know revelations.

Look, I know this stuff is in the eye of the beholder. Everton FC will be no different from any other organisation of this size. There will be different agendas, rivalries, back-biting, score-settling... Self-interest will get in the way of the greater good.

We all fancy ourselves as seekers of truth and justice and whether, like me, you feel the managers could and should have performed better with the resources available to them, or you feel the problems start and finish in the boardroom – or even if you think the girls selling the pies are not pulling their weight – there is a seemingly universal belief that something is radically wrong at our club.

There was a point to this article... Oh yeah!

I have the utmost respect to all who took to the street to protest last night. Their love for the club is unquestionable, but I have been equally impressed by the way some of ToffeeWeb`s finest writers have used their skills to shine a torch into the darker recesses of the Goodison corridors. The wrong-doers and under-performers (whoever they may be) are running out of hiding places.

I particularly liked Gerard's post. Not shy to relay his inside view on what goes on behind the green door... but far too clever to tar everybody with the same brush.

"There are many decent people working at Everton"...Probably the least surprising revelation he will post.

Very decent people... That's how the light gets in.

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Reader Comments (35)

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Derek Moore
1 Posted 27/01/2022 at 21:33:06
I'm as proud of my own voice as one ought to be - it took me long enough to find it! I'm also proud of the clarity of my thinking, my honesty and the quality of a lot of what I turn out on here in comment form. The audience here is discerning and intelligent, and it does challenge me to give the best of myself in a linguistic sense.

This was the very first place where I've written something, then read it back and been genuinely proud of myself.

That's so good I almost can't believe I wrote it.

It's for these reasons that I'd take the literary equivalent of the Pepsi Challenger against anyone and everyone. Anytime and every time. I've written better stuff here than I've written anywhere else - no small feat for a chippy / wannabe house builder who has spent most of the last twenty five years in Aotearoa and whose body is beginning to regret his original choice of career.

There is one notable exception however, and Darren cited him. John Daley is, quite simply, a genius. I know a few tricks of the pen - and I hope to even pick up a few more - but within a few paragraphs of reading Johns stuff it is immediately obvious that the best very version of myself wouldn't match John on his worst day.
I wouldn't trade my voice with anybody. But the person who'd give the most pause if I was offered a swap would be John. He's the only person here who writes so brilliantly I wish it were me, and he's the only person here who writes so brilliantly I know that never will be me.

Not sure about the light getting in to be honest Darren when it really feels like the doors are being nailed shut, and they're starting to weld metal sheets over the windows. But I did want to thank ToffeeWeb for giving me an outlet to something that gives me great pleasure - writing, not Everton or even football right now sadly - and to pay respect to the many very high quality wordsmiths on here. Many of whom Darren named, and many many more he did not.

Nil satis nisi optimum survives on these pages, if in precious few other areas of our clubs present existence. And long may it continue.





Danny O’Neill
2 Posted 27/01/2022 at 21:45:27
10th May 1986. A dark day when I cried like a baby after we'd finished second and just lost out on lifting the FA Cup.

Only to come back the following season to win the league.

How times and expectations have changed.

The girls and boys selling the pies pull their weight and are part of this glorious club of ours. But can I please just have a drink at half time, even if I've gone past the one minute warning?

Sorry, not letting that one go!

Tony Abrahams
3 Posted 27/01/2022 at 22:06:22
I like the thought of decent people Darren, but the only way I can see light, is if someone comes in, and lights a big fire, that helps to get rid of all the deadwood, that seems to exist throughout the corridors of Everton Football club.

Dave Abrahams
4 Posted 27/01/2022 at 22:07:19
Gerard McKean has always and consistently pointed out the way the club operates having seen it first hand while working at the club and seen how Denise Baxindale manoeuvred her way up the ladder, after another one of his well written posts about Denise another poster came on with a long post that absolutely derided Gerard and the post he had written prompting several letters agreeing with with this poster and saying what a brilliant post he had written.

Some of the latter posters have now changed their minds about Gerards opinions on different threads on ToffeeWeb.

Barry Rathbone
5 Posted 27/01/2022 at 22:14:08
The uniqueness of this moment is most understand, but cannot face, the fact that no matter who gets the managers job this squad is genuine relegation standard and unlike previous relegation sorties the man in charge (Moshiri) is a train wreck. Every major decision an unmitigated disaster the man is a footballing Jonah out of his depth in the shark infested waters of this industry.

Forget witterings on a forum and protests on the street they are incidental bollocks that alter nothing we are in the lap of the gods with half a season gone.

No full time manager with a short list stultifying in it's ordinariness. The chickens are coming home to roost after decades of delusion at board and fan level the grotesque vision is this club is now dependent on a gutless, characterless outfit to garner enough points for survival.

We know it. That's why we're shitting our pants

Tony Abrahams
6 Posted 27/01/2022 at 22:24:30
Sometimes I see it like that Barry, but sometimes I think we are only a couple of good players away from having a decent team. The lack of leadership is not just on the pitch now though, it’s right throughout the football club, and everyone knows you need leaders in a battle, and this is the reason, why I think everyone, is very, very concerned right now?
Paul Kernot
7 Posted 28/01/2022 at 02:54:15
Darren quoting a line from a Leonard Cohen song. Beautiful.
Scousers, Kiwi's, Evertonians of all denomination, keep the faith. What else can we do? Many players at our great club have echoed that great phrase 'Once Everton has touched you'. We know only too well how true this is. If we go down, I for one will go down with her.
Derek #1, I've lived, played, coached and am now reffing in Sunny Nelson for 30 years. I ref simply because there are more teams than ref's in the area and although I'm now too old & broken to compete at any of the available levels, I still get up on Saturday morning in winter & want to go to watch an FC Nelson game. Trouble is, they know I have a whistle and my boots in the car!
Don Alexander
8 Posted 28/01/2022 at 03:08:17
Quoting the permanently depressed Leonard Cohen suggests to me that we've all been endlessly enduring Kenwright's favourite song of his, namely "Dance with me to the end of time".

No! Fuck off Kenwright, your song stinks.

Paul Kernot
9 Posted 28/01/2022 at 03:12:27
I like the cut of your gib Don. Unfortunately, we're not quite ready to change to We are the Champions.
Paul Kernot
10 Posted 28/01/2022 at 03:29:15
And we sure as hell can't get no satisfaction.
Derek Moore
11 Posted 28/01/2022 at 03:31:49
Kia ora Paul! I was on the "emergency" list for the many years I was working for a firm in Auckland. Problem was they seemed to have more emergencies than a centipede has legs! Always seemed to be those wet and blowy Auckland mornings and lunchtimes that they'd need a linesman or referee, wife used to remark how much "car trouble" seemed to be exacerbated by a bit of Auckland drizzle and a twenty knotter blowing in.

I used to tell her as straight faced as I could, probably vapour lock!

I now work for myself and we have moved to near Tauranga. My wife was the one who asked / demanded I at least keep the weekends clear if she was going to shift three hours away from her ma and sister. So far, managed to avoid temptation mate, but your post has gotten some juices flowing, and thoughts ticking. Ideas aye!

If I relapse and get into the soup do you know what the demand is like down there for a middle aged chippy getting a wee bit slower in his later years mate?

As they say, "you can't always get what you want..."

Steve Shave
12 Posted 28/01/2022 at 07:28:55
Good article Darren, thank you. As usual when you aren't busy picking arguments with people on here you manage to capture the spirit of the blues with your words. For me you do that time and time again and I believe ToffeeWeb is a richer place for it.

Perhaps I should dust off my Leonard Cohen LPs, fitting mood for the current situation, maybe I might just find some light too.

Mick O'Malley
14 Posted 28/01/2022 at 08:16:12
I think a few Smiths songs describe the way we are feeling at the moment, “Heaven knows I’m miserable now”, Girlfriend in a coma for our spouses especially mine who is sick of me moaning about the Blues or “Still ill “ which describes half the squad, the Smiths have a long list of songs describing how we feel, Or the Queens of the Stone Age track “No one knows” which describes the decision making of our current directors, personally I’m hoping to “Take the power back”, performed by Rage against the machine
Mike Corcoran
15 Posted 28/01/2022 at 08:27:59
“Once Everton has touched you” so true a statement. Unfortunately that touch feels like that of Andrew, Epstein and Maxwell right now.
Ray Roche
16 Posted 28/01/2022 at 08:48:00
Good article Darren. As Steve says, you put together a top article when you’re not Mr Angry. Aren’t you a recently joined member of the Leonard Cohen Appreciation Society? (LCAS….sounds like a Government quango)
There’s plenty of material of Cohen’s to sift through when you retire. Just don’t lose your anger completely though, we need, occasionally, an opposite viewpoint.
Unfortunately,Our situation is more like watching Elton John’s ‘Funeral For A Friend’…..
Rob Halligan
17 Posted 28/01/2022 at 09:10:48
Darren and Dave # 4. I’ve known Ged for many years now. He used to teach with my mum, and was also best man at my brothers wedding. I can certainly say that anyone who gets into a conversation with Ged and disputes anything that he says is definitely in for a hard time. I know of one of his sources for information, and when he puts anything on here you can be sure it’s 100% true. Ged is a very intelligent person and is definitely not one to put something on here without knowing the full facts, unlike many who post something as “Fact”, only to have absolutely no foundation whatsoever to back their fact up. When Ged speaks, or posts, everyone should sit up and take notice of what he says.
Danny O’Neill
18 Posted 28/01/2022 at 09:12:52
Every day is like Sunday Mick. Okay, that's Morrisey but Smith's related. That's how I've been feeling lately!!

The problem is deep rooted. We haven't moved on. I'm watching the "Grand Old Team" play in the same tired and dated stadium that I love while clubs who were beneath us in living memory, suffered relegation regularly but are now European Champions and / or dominant in the Premier League playing in new or renovated stadia that look nothing like what they played in 27 years ago.

They didn't fix their antiquated stadia or achieve that unthinkable success by zooming in on the managerial position as the root of all cause. They ripped up the operating model of the club, had a vision and took their clubs on a different path, whilst respecting (not living) their past and heritage.

Our current board is more concerned with self-preservation.

The here and now needs to get the managerial choice right; if you can ever genuinely do that without the benefit of hindsight.

But long term, rip this club of ours apart and re-design it from top to bottom. Make it fit for the modern game, not some throw back to the 1960s and 1980s.

Great start to the weekend!

Peter Mills
19 Posted 28/01/2022 at 14:09:54
As Leonard once said, “We are all dying of this incurable disease called age”.

It would be nice if a wise appointment could be made today of a manager who could get us playing some entertaining and successful football. It’s been a while, and time is not standing still.

Mike Corcoran
20 Posted 28/01/2022 at 14:19:56
Talk of Lampard and Leonard took me back to this cracking tune and LP:

Leonard Cohen – Chelsea Hotel #2

Andrew Bentley
21 Posted 28/01/2022 at 15:35:40
reading this it does make me wish there was the ability to click on a posters name and see their history of comments/articles as sometimes its hard to see the stand out posts from all of the noise around it.

Could also be a good way to see which posters (me included!) change their opinions like the wind ;-)

Eddie Dunn
22 Posted 28/01/2022 at 16:34:38
A very worthy article Darren. A little bit of hope and let's hope that the players in this Greek tragedy somehow finish the show with the correct ending.
We didn't sign-up for a farce.
And you're spot-on about the tremendous scribes on here, many of whom would grace any broadsheet.
John Daley always brings wonderful black humour to the table.
It is heartening to hear the many clever and articulate Evertonians express their thoughts.
It's nice to know we are not alone.
It reminds me of Harry Potter, when all the good Wizzards joined forces to repell the One who should not be named.
I can see the wands pointing up to the dark clouds held by trembling hands.
Will our magic be enough?
Rick Tarleton
23 Posted 28/01/2022 at 16:48:03
Our comments are only relevant if they are noticed. I fear Moshiri is not looking and his cabal does not include true Evertonians.
Nicholas Ryan
24 Posted 28/01/2022 at 18:01:13
If we're finding musical ways to sum up being an Evertonian at the moment - how about Pink Floyd:
"I have become, comfortably numb"!
Dennis Stevens
25 Posted 28/01/2022 at 18:10:30
Neat, Nicholas. Just so long as our theme tune by the end of the season isn't Quo's Down Down!!
Dale Self
26 Posted 28/01/2022 at 19:36:37
A fine article Darren. I've been thinking through this time myself and you've captured the common experience well. We may have differences that will never really go away but how we view each other can help. Experiences here at TW have promoted that, even that hellhole the dreaded Live Forum.
Danny O’Neill
27 Posted 28/01/2022 at 20:16:54
Seeing as we've had a few musical references on this thread. One from a Liverpool band / singer that is pertinent. Story of the Blues.

"First, they take your pride
Turn it all inside
And then you realise
You've got nothing left to lose

So, you try to stop
Try to get back up
And then, you realise
You're telling the Story of the Blues

Feeling browbeaten
Day after day
I think it's over
But I just can't get away"

How fucking apt. Especially that last line.

Neil Copeland
28 Posted 28/01/2022 at 20:45:05
Great article Darren, thanks

“Another one bites the dust” by Queen seems very apt at the moment

Paul Birmingham
29 Posted 28/01/2022 at 21:01:53
The Rise, Fall & Decline of Everton FC, is well documented, surely from the ashes of defeat and consistently failure, epitomised by the circus that is the Everton board, cant get any worse.

Will there be a new manager announced tonight, who ever gets the job, the best of luck.

Paul Birmingham
30 Posted 28/01/2022 at 21:01:59
The Rise, Fall & Decline of Everton FC, is well documented, surely from the ashes of defeat and consistently failure, epitomised by the circus that is the Everton board, cant get any worse.

Will there be a new manager announced tonight, who ever gets the job, the best of luck.

Paul Kernot
31 Posted 28/01/2022 at 21:33:30
Derek. We have a small but excellent masters league here. Full of aging, good & average players who can still do it in their heads at least! As you can imagine, reffing those games is definitely tin hat material.
Kieran Byrne
32 Posted 29/01/2022 at 00:45:20
As it looks like Lampard & he’s an old Hammer. how about some Supertramp to describe the plight of our Everton.
Lampard to the players. Give a little bit,
Kenwright to Moshiri Hide in your shell
Kenwright to the media Crisis what Crisis
Players linked to us to their agents.. don’t arrange to send me to the Asylum
Kenwright to the fans Fools Overture
Everton fans to the board Soapbox Opera
Paul Kernot
33 Posted 29/01/2022 at 02:38:42
Kieran. You're nothin but a dreamer.
Don Alexander
34 Posted 29/01/2022 at 03:12:50
And, as ever, it'll be Breakfasts in America all round prior to "training" on Monday morning.
Christine Foster
35 Posted 29/01/2022 at 09:02:11
Darren, good article, we all want the same thing but we all think we know the answer! But ToffeeWeb has been my companion for over 16 years now, looking back at some or the articles written, I took few prisoners, but then I was a mere ageing keyboard warrior.. but my heart lights up when I read the old and the new posters tearing their hair out again!

ToffeeWeb has become a family to me, with distant cousins across the globe, friends I have never met but hope to, one day.. BMD and pandemic allowing..
We fight and sometimes it gets a bit fraught, which made me think of George Harrison's "Isn't it a pity.."

Isn't it a pity
Now, isn't it a shame
How we break each other's hearts
And cause each other pain
How we take each other's love
Without thinking anymore
Forgetting to give back
Isn't it a pity
Some things take so long
But how do I explain
When not too many people
Can see we're all the same
And because of all their tears
Their eyes can't hope to see
The beauty that surrounds them
Isn't it a pity

Sort of sums up ToffeeWeb somedays!

Darren Hind
36 Posted 31/01/2022 at 20:04:53
Ray

Yes, I did recently sign up to LCAS. I don't know how I missed his work for so long, Loving getting into it But it was not Him I was quoting.

We used to have a lady called Gemma on our landing. She was a Wexford girl who came to stay with her sister (my mate next door's mam). Gemma wasn't married so she got the job of being everyone's aunty.

She was full of Oxies. "If I catch you lot fighting again I'll beat the shite of yez!"

Being the landing "aunty", she had carte blanche to smack anybody around the head... and she did – often. There was about 20 kids on our landing alone – "I'll crack your heads, maybe that'll let some light in," she would say.

When I heard the Cohen song for the first time a few weeks back, my heart leapt... I remembered our take-no-prisoners Aunty Gemma like it was yesterday The greatest teacher of all time.

Disappointed the big fella didn't get the gig, but I'm hopeful the right choice has been made and we can turn this nightmare around. I've never enjoyed transfer deadline day so I'll get off to work in the hope of coming home tomorrow and finding Lionel Messi has signed.


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