These articles are published in the Slough Town FC programme. The Rebels play in the Southern Premier - just seven leagues below the Premier League. I’ve been supporting Slough since the beginning of time despite now living in Brighton. After nearly 14 nomadic years we finally have a brand spanking new home in Slough.

Monday, March 31, 2014

MATHMATICAL TWITS

Printed in the Southern League Division One Central game v Royston Town Saturday Saturday 29th March 2014. We won 2-1 in front of 292 people.

Forget squeaky bum time. This is one of those seasons when you not only have to be close to the toilets but also a mathematical genius, as a place in the play-offs goes to the wire. Twitter goes into meltdown on Tuesday and Thursday nights as Slough fans indulge in twit-athons trying to work out all the different permutations as results from other clubs come in. Well, a few of us saddos do anyway.
Whereas the majority of Twitter is just inane twaddle, its main reason for being is for revolutions and non league football. In the not too distant past BM (before mobiles) we would have to wait till Sunday or the following week to find out the scores, now they spew forth in a torrent of finger tapping rage.
Well, at least they should do.
In my last bestseller, The Non League Manifesto, one of my key demands was making twitter compulsory for all non league clubs. It doesn't take a lot of effort and puts you in touch with people instantly. Of course its not the answer to getting more bums through gates, but when the weathers iffy its the quickest way to let people know if the game is on.
One of the revelations of our new managers is their use of social media. When there's a two way dialogue between fans, it creates trust and can quickly clear up any issues that otherwise can get out of control and set keyboard warriors off in a frothing frenzy.
And giving supporters a voice is a good thing. I was involved in one of the Slough Town fanzines ‘Rebels Without A Clue’ which was part of the wave of independent football fanzines that started demanding a right to be heard and culminated in the Supporters' Trust movement and supporter run clubs.
Of course fans being taken seriously still has some way to go, but I was particularly impressed by Hull City's owner telling their fans to go to hell if they didn't like the idea of being called Tigers.
We should also be wary of social media. Any idiot can put their thoughts out there – just look at me. And where are the editors checking their facts?
But i have to take my Slough Town bobble hat off to Sam Gardiner, a 17 year school boy who pretended he was a football scout because he wanted more people to listen to his football views. Before he was rumbled, he had 20,000 followers and was being private messaged by footballers and journalists. "When I was 15, I created a Twitter account but no one was taking me seriously. I had 300 followers. Adults don't want to listen to 15-year-olds and I don't blame them, to be honest. But I was getting really frustrated, because I love football, I love talking about football and I just wanted to air my opinions to as many people as possible."
The fact that he wants to be a journalist or an MP gives an indication to his state of mind, but at least his front is harmless compared to some of the bile and hate sent to people in the limelight, or by people like ex-Slough Town Dave 'The Doughnut' Deeney whose under police investigation for threatening to stab Kettering Town fans.
What we really need is some computer geek to invent an app which can act as a breathalyser; that can smell if you have had too much to drink and stop your postings until the morning when you can reconsider them in the cold, sober light of day.
So keep those results and revolutions coming but remember to take the rest of it with large pinch of smelling salts. And despite all this social media business, the best way of communicating is still face to face using your vocal chords. 

Some photos of the day with some cute mascots

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