July 24th, 2003

Ickle Cute Thing

Feeling like a million dollars...

...with a three pound top and a five pound haircut.

And if that doesn't sound like a number 1 country and western song, what does?

Once I have a beardy trim, you can see before/after pics. It's scary how quickly my hair grew in two months; the hairdresser commented on how disturbing it was.

Update! Before and after pics now available! Scare your friends with authentic pictures of scruffiness!

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I will explain why the top (worn in the latter picture, no less) makes me so squealishly happy in the near future. It's a geeky story, but then, what else do you expect from me?
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Barcode Simplicity

Sensible Soccer, Rivers United and the lack of maroon tops in the world.

It started when I was very young. I had just got a Mega Drive and Sensible Soccer for Christmas and I was enjoying the game muchly. Then I found you could make up your own teams, and for someone who loved to customise things, this made me fall in love with the game. One of the first sides I made up was humbly titled Rivers United, and when I went to make up the kit I chose a combination of purple with yellow stripes. Except, my TV reception had always been poor and so the purple ended up looking dark red on the screen.

And so the legacy started.

The kits design changed as time went on, with some games having fancier kit designs resulting in the Rivers United kit sometimes having black stripes in or yellow arms, but the colour combination was always maroon and yellow if I could get that.

Whenever a football game allowed extensive customising, I made a Rivers United side. From Fifas to CMs, a Rivers United was eventually edited into a game. The infatuation for the original side still remains, because Sensible Soccer had got a bunch of kids around here playing a madcap game, with our ridiculously customised football teams.

Anyway, I realised when I had money in the bank that I fancied an extravagance. And I thought maybe I'd get me a Rivers United kit made up... or at least, find a kit with the same colour scheme, because I'd have very little chance in finding a top just like how I desired.

The closest I found were Bradford City (the yellow there is closer to orange in real life), Partick Thistle (too red) or Portugal (the perfect shade of dark red, but there was green on the side - and I preferred this design, really).

Nothing was perfect enough to spend thirty pounds on (the usual price for a replica kit) so I was put off by it. I looked around and found a few websites that made kits for schools, and found a design close to what I wanted.. I asked the guy who could potentially make this top for an estimate as to how much one kit alone would cost; he said £25, which deterred me. But I said fair enough, what info would he need from me. I never heard back.

This leads this story to the current day. I was just wandering back from having to get a new lock for our front door and went into a sports shop to see about a pair of shoes I've been after for a while, and on my way out I noticed a maroon and yellow football shirt. I mean, as close to perfection as I could hope for. These were nice quality, were blank in terms of logos (allowing me to get a logo created and patched on, even) and in my size. I was quite amazed. I went to look at the price of these shirts, knowing no matter what I happened I was buying one.

Three pounds.

The thing I have been looking for since eleven, would have paid stupid money for something as well-made as this, and it's three pounds.

I bought two. I wanted to buy four, but it'd have been hard explaining this all to Mum, and it allows me to leave one plain and to mess up the other one by putting a pretty logo on it sometime soon.

I'm now happy and wearing one of the shirts now. I'll take a pic of the other shirt so you can see what I've gone so silly over, and go "Pfft! It's only a shirt."

I guess I'm just a strange one to please.
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