What are you doing without football?

Oxpete

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Dec 7, 2019
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403
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Pompey
I was sat in the back one night last week watching a pigeon take a walk across the lawn, when suddenly a bird-of-prey type bird swooped down and carried the pigeon over the fence into next doors garden. By the time I went out to have a look over the fence there wasn't much that could be done for the poor pigeon, but looking at the mess I was just glad it wasn't in my garden.

I Googled the attacker, it was a hawk or a sparrowhawk. Either way, I've never seen one round her and wonder if these types of birds are getting more brave and venturing into unknown territory due to it being much quieter than normal.
I'm still working full-time, at my job in a college in the centre of Oxford.

A sparrowhawk has been getting rich pickings here since the lock-down, too. Back in the first couple of weeks of lock-down, it disposed of four pigeons in our quad that we know of (and I'd guess more in surrounding colleges, too). The remains have been gobbled up by a fox that has also been making itself at home. Last week, the sparrowhawk was back again, picked off two more pigeons and chased some others through an open window into a student block where they made a hell of a mess.

On my nightshifts, I've also been lucky enough to see regular appearances of a large barn-owl (usually between 3am~4am), which has been been having a merry old time catching mice in the graveyard. I suspect that the lack of noise and disturbance usually caused by students and tourists has given the pigeons and mice a false sense of security.

Also, the dawn chorus of blackbirds and other songbirds at about 4am is louder than I've ever heard it before.
 

OKmusky

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Dec 8, 2019
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10
I'm still working full-time, at my job in a college in the centre of Oxford.

A sparrowhawk has been getting rich pickings here since the lock-down, too. Back in the first couple of weeks of lock-down, it disposed of four pigeons in our quad that we know of (and I'd guess more in surrounding colleges, too). The remains have been gobbled up by a fox that has also been making itself at home. Last week, the sparrowhawk was back again, picked off two more pigeons and chased some others through an open window into a student block where they made a hell of a mess.

On my nightshifts, I've also been lucky enough to see regular appearances of a large barn-owl (usually between 3am~4am), which has been been having a merry old time catching mice in the graveyard. I suspect that the lack of noise and disturbance usually caused by students and tourists has given the pigeons and mice a false sense of security.

Also, the dawn chorus of blackbirds and other songbirds at about 4am is louder than I've ever heard it before.
As someone who also works nights, I too have noticed the loudness of the dawn chorus.

Just to go back to our pigeon victim, I was just glad it wasn't one of our regular visitors who we'd become familiar enough with to give them names (Hoppy and Tufty).
 

Digdagdog

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Melksham Town, Bath Rugby, Lancashire CCC, Wigan Warriors
A Sparrowhawk dived down into our garden last week to attempt to eat some Chaffinches feasting on my freshly cut lawn; he missed and in getting away brained himself/herself on the fence and had to 'take five' to recover. My wife wanted me to help...no way was I going near that beak and those talons
 

Kingsmere

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Dec 7, 2019
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132
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Rampant Rangers
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Had this chap making regular appearances and a smaller one. Got loads of rabbits walking in the a few area. Various other birds, a duck had 9 babies swimming we her on the local pond. Bird song all the time, probably always there just drowned out by the motorway. And of course the lovely clear evening skies.

The local bike shop has increased it's trade three fold as cars just gather dust.
 

Climate Change

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Dec 8, 2019
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366
6 Brecon Buff goslings hatched............ more goslings and chicks due next week
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Hoddy1.

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Crewe Alexandra.
England.
roast goose recipe
 

Bigaitch

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Dec 7, 2019
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None in particular
Watching football today....Dortmund v Schalke live on BT Sport....
 

buncranaboy

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Dec 7, 2019
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Bostock Stanley, Barnstoneworth United
Watching football today....Dortmund v Schalke live on BT Sport....
Likewise. Some super goals against admittedly poor opponents. Now recording Frankfurt vs Monchengladbach to watch when the females have finished watching their nonsense.
 

Kingsmere

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Dec 7, 2019
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132
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Rampant Rangers
Watched some from Belarus then Germany, still watching as I type. Also more decorating and gardening, though my copy of the Cemetary End came today for some R&R reading.
 

Bigaitch

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Likewise. Some super goals against admittedly poor opponents. Now recording Frankfurt vs Monchengladbach to watch when the females have finished watching their nonsense.
I dont usually enjoy live games on tv unless it is relevant to a team I follow, however I was really looking forward to it before the game, and it did not disappoint. Probably down to the withdrawal symptoms of no footy, and the quirky nature of it all. The game was very good and I am looking forward to some more.
 

oftenscore6

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Dec 8, 2019
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FC United of Manchester, St Pauli, Hammarby, Hawthorn (AFL)
I watched the German games this weekend, though still have Bremen and Greuther Furth recorded and yet to watch. But I got so fed up of McManaman and Keown spouting utter tosh I muted the sound in the first couple. Owen Hargreaves is better, to be fair, watched those with the sound on.
 

Digdagdog

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Dec 9, 2019
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207
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Melksham Town, Bath Rugby, Lancashire CCC, Wigan Warriors
My kids watched the Bundesliga...I didn't as it doesn't interest me. My kids have all been brought up on the PL, so miss their football telly.
 

Chris1963

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Mar 10, 2020
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271
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Oxford United / groundhopper
With not much to do on my non-working days (especially with all those public holidays) over the past few months, I’ve taken the opportunity to read some of my large collection of Oxford United programmes. In many cases, it has been the first time I had read the programme since the match day. It’s amazing what you can find out by looking at old programmes. For example, on looking at the issue from an Oxford United v Shrewsbury Town game I had attended many years ago, I was surprised to find that the Shrewsbury keeper had been a young Joe Hart, who of course went on to become England’s first choice keeper. I bet some of those hoppers who have sold their programme collections in the belief that they would never have the time to read them, are starting to regret their actions!

I’ve also taken the opportunity to do a bit of on-line shopping, as many of you have probably already done too, and a book I ordered is ‘Dictatorland’ by Paul Kenyon. This tells how various African countries were ruined by their corrupt leaders. As I have strong family connections with Africa, I felt that I had to learn more about the continent. It’s a compelling book, illustrated with maps and photos, and tells you a lot about colonialism as well as the corrupt modern-day leaders. I can recommend it if, like myself, you have African connections, or if you are looking for ideas on how to become a dictator of some obscure country (which I suspect will appeal to certain people on this forum.)

I prefer to read the written word in daylight, as I don’t think it is good for your eyesight to read books or programmes under artificial light. Therefore, when it gets dark, I stop reading the printed word and use my computer instead. Until 2007, I had never owned a computer (I relied on work and library computers when I needed the internet for football purposes) but in 2007 my brother gave me his old computer when he was upgrading to a new one, along with a selection of games which he had been playing. The games were all in the form of discs which you had to insert into a large hard drive. You might say that we shouldn’t doing this at our ages, but as neither of us have any children, I suppose we can be forgiven for behaving like kids, and at least we play the games in PC format, which arguably is a more ‘grown-up’ way of playing computer games than the Playstation / Xbox formats.
I remember travelling to an evening football match (circa 2005) and seeing a well-dressed commuter playing what may have been ‘Medal of Honor’ on his laptop. This was one of the games my brother had given me in 2007.

‘Medal of Honor’ is a WW2 first-person shooter game that was released in 2002. It was regarded as ground-breaking at the time in its depiction of a 3-D world in which the German enemy soldiers appear to be doing things when they are out of sight. It is very addictive because it is quite difficult in places and it can take you many hours to fight your way out of a particular situation. It took me several weeks just to get through the ‘easy’ level, but I then had to give up after about 80% of the way through the ‘medium’ level when I could not get through the ‘Tiger Tank-at-the-river-bridge’ scenario.

Some years later I decided to buy a computer for myself simply because I wanted a flat-screen one which was easy to move from room to room rather than the huge chunky thing that my brother had given me. Unfortunately, I then discovered that some of the computer games my brother had given me, including the 2002 Medal of Honor, were not compatible with the new computer! This was disappointing, but with football, as always, taking priority in my leisure time, I forgot about it until the coronavirus came along. Desperate to find a way of being able to play ‘Medal of Honor’ again, I then did a bit of searching on Google and found that you can now buy it direct on-line from EA Games in a format which you can play straightaway without having to insert a disc into a hard drive. This cost just £6.99 (presumably the low price was because most people prefer to play the more modern games rather than one which dates from 2002) and this was the best value I have spent money for a long time. So at present, I am absorbed in getting through the game again, this time starting on the ‘medium’ level rather than the ‘easy’ level, and this time I managed to get through the Tiger Tank part after looking at YouTube for clues as to how other people had got through it. Once again, it has taken me a few weeks to get through to where I am now, in the 4th of the five stages of the game, trying to fight my way through a rural German town covered in snow. It is fascinating seeing how much of the game I can, or can’t, remember after a gap of thirteen years. Once I have finished it I will try and see if I can also buy on-line some of the other games my brother had given me in 2007.
 
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paulh66

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Dec 7, 2019
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1,136
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Tranmere, South Liverpool
With not much to do on my non-working days (especially with all those public holidays) over the past few months, I’ve taken the opportunity to read some of my large collection of Oxford United programmes. In many cases, it has been the first time I had read the programme since the match day. It’s amazing what you can find out by looking at old programmes. For example, on looking at the issue from an Oxford United v Shrewsbury Town game I had attended many years ago, I was surprised to find that the Shrewsbury keeper had been a young Joe Hart, who of course went on to become England’s first choice keeper. I bet some of those hoppers who have sold their programme collections in the belief that they would never have the time to read them, are starting to regret their actions!
I had cause to dip into one of my 87/88 Tranmere programmes recently, from a home game just after we'd appeared at Wembley for the first time in our history, in the much-maligned FL Centenary tournament. It had a paragraph from one of the contributors complaining about Wembley prices - £1 for a pie, £1.35 for a hot dog and £1.40 for a lager. Or, "if you think that's a rip off", a round of six drinks in a top London hotel for £17.55!

Apart from that I've spent a few weeks protecting the NHS and saving lives, all from the comfort of my own armchair. I'm now trying to stay alert and control the virus, but relying on the sofa a bit more for that.
 

Dr Love

Junior Team Starter
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Dec 7, 2019
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Halifax Town
I'm getting out walking as much as I can, as much as work allows, and trying to cover the areas between where I've been in the past. The last couple of days have been spent on and around Salisbury Plain. A couple of slight diversions, including one due to the red flags being out.
 

Kingsmere

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Dec 7, 2019
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Rampant Rangers
Reading old programmes old reserve teamsheets are my favourites, it's amazing who I've seen before they were famous.
 

buncranaboy

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Dec 7, 2019
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Bostock Stanley, Barnstoneworth United
This tells how various African countries were ruined by their corrupt leaders. As I have strong family connections with Africa, I felt that I had to learn more about the continent. It’s a compelling book, illustrated with maps and photos, and tells you a lot about colonialism as well as the corrupt modern-day leaders.
An interesting observation as you don't mention corrupt colonisation at all.
 

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