Sep 26, 2022


The Monday Knee Jerk Reaction: AFL Grand Final


Footy is a passion, not some cold hearted, spread sheet dominated rational exercise. 

On a Monday, you want irrational reaction. You want emotion to trump reason.

What you really want is idiotic hysteria.

You've come to the right place.

Geelong (133) v Sydney (52)

Hello Cats fans, because I’m not sure anyone else will be reading this.

I’ve never had much interest in attending a Geelong training session but attend one I did on Saturday with 100,000 other people.

And it was a light training session, as the Cats alleged opponents, the Sydney Swans, failed to make it to the ground.

The day started well, it was perfect weather, and as the tens of thousands of people streamed to the MCG, the buzz was back in Melbourne after a two-year hiatus due to the recent unpleasantness.

I was thrilled to see people drinking once again in public before noon, and everyone was up and about in good spirits.

I was asked by both Swans and Cats fans who I thought would win as I walked to the ground, ‘Not sure, but it will be close’, I said with my white man confidence, proving once again I’m slightly less accurate in predicting things than horoscopes.

One prediction I didn’t get wrong was the pre-match entertainment.

Robbie Williams killed it.

He got the crowd singing along, which is almost impossible to get happening at a Grand Final, with most people there being bankers and marketing executives.

It didn’t hurt that he sang You’re the Voice, a song everyone knows better than our actual national anthem.

By the time Delta joined him for Kids he had the crowd in the palm of his hand, proving you need someone who can really work the crowd and is used to doing big arena-style shows.

Disappointed as I was by Robbie’s talent and professionalism, it was time to focus on the game, and there were no signs of what was to come as the Swans managed to run out onto the ground without banging into each other or getting lost or lying down and having a nap.

Geelong, though won the running through the banner, with Joel Selwood carrying Gary Ablett Jr’s son through the banner. Dammit.

We had to sit through this game and feel positive about Joel Selwood? This day was very challenging for a lot of us.

Running through the banner was Sydney’s sole highlight because once the siren sounded, they looked like a bunch of people herded onto the ground against their will and forced to play a game they’d never seen before.

Handballs and kicks went so wide of the mark it made the first Auskick session of the season look professional, and when the ball did find a target, the Swans player would drop it, often while yelping in fright.

Geelong was having no such issues, they were unafraid of the ball, and when they got it, which was all the time, they knew what to do with it.

So long did the Swans often go without touching the ball at all that eons passed, stars exploded and new ones formed, the Earth watched mountains rise and fall, and the dinosaurs were born and went extinct.

I was so bored I may as well have been watching street theatre.

Sydney fans held their faces in their hands as they watched Tom Hawkins pluck the ball out of the ruck, not once but twice.

It appeared the Swans players had never seen this before, even though everyone in the stands predicted it was going to happen as the ball was thrown in.

By the time the first quarter was over, Geelong’s blitzkrieg had them up by 35 points, and Swans fans were hitting the bars harder than Jeremey Cameron would in a few hours.

Any hope of a comeback was extinguished pretty quickly in the second quarter as the Cats only grew in confidence while the Swans shrunk within themselves.

Chad Warner was one of the few Swans that seemed keen to fly the flag, but the vast majority seemed just to want it to be over, as did many viewers.

You could hear TV sets being turned off around the country, partly to protect kids from seeing this.

Halftime came just as any interest in the game left; the only people enjoying themselves were Cats fans.

Unlike the pre-game entertainment, the halftime lacked the ability to fill the stadium, it was fine, but it didn’t really get anyone’s attention.

The one moment of interest was when a Collingwood fan managed to evade security and bang on a drum kit for a few minutes while yelling.

Unfortunately, the game had to resume, and we all strapped ourselves in for two more quarters of this nonsense.  

It only got worse. The Cats were not even pretending this was hard anymore, and the Swans weren’t paying lip service to trying.

Cats fans around me were not even slightly nervous, they were instead bewildered at how easy this was.

Swans fans sat there stoically but looked like they were at the funeral of someone they actually liked.

The final siren signalled an end to the brutality, and no one would have blamed the Swans if they’d just left. In fact, they sort of did in the first quarter.

But they did stay, and Dane Rampe gave one of the classiest speeches ever at a Grand Final.

He said, “I just want to touch on Joel Selwood’s record as well – sometimes you just have to pinch yourself when you share the field with the giants of the game mate, and you’re an absolute giant – congratulations!”

It reflected that why this had not been their day; the Swans have the character to come back in the future.

Isaac Smith was then named the Norm Smith medallist, but there were a host of Cats who could have been awarded that honour, such was their dominance.

Only Gary Rohan stuck with tradition, gathering just seven disposals.

But even he couldn’t compete with Buddy Franklin, who loomed so large all week only to turn in a performance so poor it was only when he got a Bronx cheer late in the game that I realised he was out there.

As the Swans were finally allowed to leave the scene of this massacre, the Cats fans and players celebrated an almost perfect season.

Joel Selwood pulled Geelong’s water boy Sam Moorfoot out of the stands to celebrate with the team in a wonderful moment. I mean, do I like Joel Selwood now? What the hell is happening?

For Geelong, after many attempts, all the pieces had fallen into the right places; they really were the greatest team of all, in a game, so one-sided that a cow gave the Cats more trouble on the day than the Swans.

You can help support me in producing this ridiculous nonsense I churn out on a regular basis. Find out more here:

My new podcast Sports Bizarre is out now: 


Peter Young

Sep 26, 2022

Thanks for a great season of posts, Titus. Pity this GF didn't give you the chance to match last year's "Half way through the third, I was crouched in a foetal position on the floor, watching Bontempelli put one hand on the Norm Smith."

The g train

Sep 26, 2022

Another exceptional season of irrational hysterical nonsense, Titus. Such nonsense is the basis of all profound knowledge. The ability to conjure joy from misery is quite a good talent to have.

(Apologies to Eric Burdon and The Animals):

Tale of a rising son.

There is a Titus from old Melbourne
They call a rising Son.
But he’s been the ruin of many a Saints fan
And Titus, he knows, I’m one.

Titus was once a loner
Found footy in his teens.
Ended up a Demons man
Against his working class genes.

Now the only thing Titus does write
Is ridiculous satire.
Yet the only times he’s satisfied—
Is when his Demons fire.

Oh, Titus, tell your readers
Not to do what some have done.
To spend their years in pain and misery
Barracking for the Gold Coast Suns

Well, he’s got one foot on gambling ads
The other foot on Gil’s reign
But he’s going back to old Melbourne
To satire footy games

Well, there is a Titus from old Melbourne…


Sep 26, 2022

Sydney did win the toss they can work with that for 2023


Sep 26, 2022

but seriously...... how good are the cats?


Sep 26, 2022

A fine summation of the bloodbath of the Bloods, Titus - and glad you paid tribute to Dane Rampe, his speech put all others in the shade, all the more impressive as it wouldn't have been scripted or rehearsed, if the dude doesn't get some public speaking gigs out of that then there's no justice.

Running Dog

Sep 26, 2022

Thanks for your reviews over the year, Titus. They were a highlight, particularly since the game itself has now become so compromised. Even its showpiece wasn't exciting enough to distract my attention from seeing if my stolen telco data had been misused as badly as Sam Reid. And if a match can be so tedious that people have to Bronx cheer an all time great instead of Gary Rohan then it's no wonder gambling is so prevalent.

Fancy Pants

Sep 26, 2022

Thanks for the season of stories and commentary. Much enjoyed.
Are you the only person in Australia that gets 6 months leave each year? Are you recruiting at present or in Hawaii already?

Con Cushion

Sep 26, 2022

Turn it up Titus ... your post today made sense. Not your intention I know but even the wife got a corn flake caught in her throat wrapped in the emotion of your words. It was a close thing, but it's given me an idea ... sadly I have to wait for your next KNEE JERK, March is a long way off. Thanks for the 2022 memories. Put the keyboard in mothballs Titus. Turn it Down!! Con.


Sep 26, 2022

Thank you for a season of laughs Titus. Much appreciated.


Sep 26, 2022

Thank you , Titus, for the many brilliant and enjoyable moments over the 2022 season.


Sep 26, 2022

Thanks for a thoroughly entertaining season. Love your work!

Fat Side

Sep 26, 2022

We can avoid the curse of the GF walkover in future years by feeding vision of all the season's matches to the ARC ( which is never wrong ) and letting it choose the two teams who will provide the most entertaining game. This will let us have a one-week final series, allowing more time to do chores around the house in September, as this year's Grand final kindly provided.
Thanks again Titus for giving us some footy commentary actually worth reading, and giving us all the chance to entertain each other with our own idiotic, and sometimes insightful, thoughts.
cheers, FS.

David O'Leary

Sep 26, 2022

Sydney v St Kilda GF in 2023 - Carn Sainters!!

The Dirty Bludger

Sep 26, 2022

I really identified with the Swans players on Saturday.
Put in the hard yards, win a flag, so you can rest on your laurels?
Or take the day off, and drink in the atmosphere and $25 beers?
Hard work pays off in the future, laziness pays off right now.


Sep 26, 2022

Thanks Titus. Another great season of celebrating the absurdity of our passion for professional sport. No sponsorship, gambling or kowtowing to power. Looking forward to your next season.


Sep 26, 2022

Every line of this MKJR is Pure Gold, Titus! The worst thing about the end of the AFL season is the end of these little sparks of joy. Thank you again for a sterling year!


Sep 26, 2022

Brilliant again, Titus.
I don’t usually put words in the box below your hilarious satire of summations, yet loving your work each post-round what else can one do 🤔

Don’t ever change T.O’R.
Fangs* for the belly laughs.


Saint Peter

Sep 26, 2022

Thank you Titus. You finished off the footy season in fine style. This gives us Saints fans 6 months of hope before the next season starts and before realization kicks in and crushes those hopes we built up after our fantastic drafting of future stars & trading in the now stars. Lets hope we change our recruiting policy of getting in B graders for getting in A graders.

Titus's summation of Robbie Williams was excellent. I thought he was best on ground after all the Geelong players.


Sep 26, 2022

Thanks for another year of witty reflections!


Sep 26, 2022

Geelong: world champions.


Sep 26, 2022

Thanks again Titus for a wonderful season I was even moved by Joel Selwood
To the next season of optimism for the mighty Tigers
Keep that brain ticking

Jon holmes

Sep 26, 2022

Fairly easy for Catters to win when all the umpires are on their side.


Sep 26, 2022

Thank you for such a great season of laughs - it’s always such a joy when I see your emails pop into my inbox!


Sep 26, 2022

Well I, for one, would like to thank you for all the laughs.

Darren J Ray

Sep 26, 2022

Thank you for another great season of laughs, Titus. Much appreciated. Hoping you'll pop into Brisbane again one of these days.


Sep 26, 2022

Thanks Titus for your take on each round, before and after, throughout the season. Always enjoyed.🤘


Sep 26, 2022

I'm going to miss your humorous but also extraordinary accurate summation of our great game.
As we are now deprived of any decent sport could you push for a similar EPL 38 round season + finals that will see us enjoy your commentary a bit longer!

Colin of Pascoe Vale

Sep 26, 2022

A mate of mine at the G, thought he saw a couple of Cats players kick goals for the Swans , out of sympathy. Can't be right.


Sep 26, 2022

Good you exposed Garry Rohans legendary consistency. Two stunningly good games in a row!


Sep 26, 2022

Love your work Titus. Your dry wit is the highlight of my Monday read. Can't wait for the next edition. Have a fabulous off season. Thank you 😊

Son of catcus

Sep 26, 2022

Thanks Titus, a marvelous season output.

Son of plugger

Sep 26, 2022

Thanks, Titus. Great season, and If only Sydney put in an equally brilliant GF effort.

Enjoyed many of the comments throughout the season also. Saint Peter—it’s all good. Hope not needed. De Goey will fix everything everywhere all at once at StK in ‘23.

It Should’ve Been The Bombers

Sep 26, 2022

Such is life.

Sheldon Wiebe

Sep 26, 2022

I managed to get through the game and the half-time entertainment without falling asleep.

Sadly, due to TSN's grossly underestimating the length of a boxing match (boxers swaggering to ring=5minutes; twelve rounds=26 minutes; 12 breaks=12minutes; celebration by winner=5 minutes) we here in the Great White North did not get the pre-game entertainment (this apparently missing the best part of the day).

Deep sigh. Nothing to see here. Cats in their cradles. Swans failed to fly. Etc., etc, etc.

Good night all. safe travels.


Sep 26, 2022

In my day 7 disposals would have got you on the best players list perhaps BOG. As a wingman you stayed out on the wing and hoped the ball wasn't kicked wide and risk embarrassing oneself. None of this follow the ball crap, you kept your zone manned at all times regardless of not getting a kick, kicking was left to the onballers.
When it did come out wide and only you and your opponent were there you would let your opponent go at the ball first in case you screwed up. Someone had to play wide on the outside just in case he handballed it to you accidentally.
I sympathise entirely with Gary Rohan and all Sydney players because I have been in the jungle of despair myself 159 games 158 losses and 1 draw and didn't we celebrate that draw hard.


Sep 26, 2022

Thank you Titus, the thought lasted one second, I still don’t like JS (don’t even want to type his name. Eeeewww.

Doggie Dancer

Sep 27, 2022

How unfair is it that the Swans always play better than the other side in the Grand Finals but they are umpired out of them. HAHA

Geno Rawlings

Sep 27, 2022

Quality reading as always, funniest footy head ever is Titus!!

Beau from Beaumaris

Sep 27, 2022

Another great season thanks Titus.
Pity the Dees couldn’t keep up the 2021 standards that you managed to.
Please find something in the off season to keep us entertained - looking forward to 2023 with the usual optimism tempered by MFCSS.


Sep 28, 2022

I share your sense of discombobulation regarding having fuzzy, warm feelings for Joel Selwood, the player whose sneaky technique in getting 100 frees every match created a new rule about head high tackles. I'm still suffering. Hopefully I won't have it next year.


Sep 29, 2022

Great summary. It's good to see the Cats have some success after so long in the wilderness. Maybe Collingwood or Richmond can ease their supporters heartache next year.
Please bring back the podcast.

El Scotto

Oct 02, 2022

Wonderfully written Titus. And of course you like Joel Selwood, why wouldn't you?
As a Cats supporter that game was as close to tantric sex as I'll ever get.


Oct 05, 2022

We fell asleep at half time and woke to continued massacre in the final quarter. South obviously played their Grand Final the week before - it happens so often. Rather them get pulped than us, if that was the fate due for Geealong's opponent. Looking forward to more scintillation from the Pies next year. You know the universe has shifted when so many haters now say they admire the black & white. Perhaps a side effect of that is the otherwise inexplicable for the diving champion, JS?