In recent times at Rugbyheads you may have noticed a distinct lack of commentary where normally there is no lack of one-sided, wildly reasoned exposition on all manner of Rugby!
Well as CEO of Rugbyheads I have decided that enough is enough, so I rounded up all these so called Contributors in an effort to find out what their feeble excuses for neglecting their duties might be.
Firstly I went and had a word with Jules. He claimed he has been holding the place up by himself, keeping the scores updated and the discussion board ticking over. I got the impression he thought that the blame lay squarely somewhere else but when I questioned him about how many articles he had written lately, and where his long overdue match report for that great Canterbury performance against Otago was, he had no answers.
He just started staring at the floor and mumbling about how he'd been so busy with this new project he was working on that he hadn't had time to do it yet, he even admitted that he was too busy last week to get his Fantasy Rugby team in on time!?! Bugger me, this is getting serious!
I slapped him around a bit and told him to pull finger on the match report or I'd release the photos of him and Carlos.... he turned very pale and nodded frantically. Ah blackmail, you can't beat it!
I then gave Comfy a call, I know he hasn't been a big contributor in the past but I needed to sound him out at least. He told me that he was far too busy and couldn't really afford time for friviolous activities like writing for RH.
Rather than just smacking some sense into him at this point, I persisted and found that he was struggling with which colour of baby gear to buy.
"Do we buy pink, or blue" (as he mentioned this last word he shuddered like any good Cantab would) "or do we break into the beer fund and buy both?"
Well I sorted him out right smart. "First," I said. "Don't think of Auckland when you think blue, think Otago." (I could see the calmness begin to descend on him) "And then what are you doing worrying about extra money, when you can just buy a neutral colour, something that will suit the wee kiddy regardless of his sex. You can't go wrong with red... and black!"
With that momentus decision out of they way I could just tell that a story from Comfy was only a keyboard away!
Next I went down to the Polytech in search of DH, ever since he has been cramming a part-time job and fulltime study into his previously empty calender his passion for the great game seemed to have taken a back seat.
Not pulling any punches I drove right to the ball, "Where is your eye patch mate? Where are your parochial reasoned views? We need your rational irrationality at a moment like this!"
He looked at me and I knew as he raised his right eyebrow I wasn't going to like his reply of, "That's illogical Captain!"
If there a stickier situation than this, it could only have come from the Laboritories of 3M! There was only one quick fix, I had to shock him out of it.
Calmly I said to DH, "Have you heard that Carlos Spencer is up for an IRB rugby player of the year award?"
It was my own fault, I shouldn't have been standing between him and the computer! Like a Jonah of young he ran over me in his haste, and had written two and a half thousand words, before he realised I was kidding him. (Haven't seen typing work like it since the Xtra Live scoring of the Canterbury Otago NPC game!)
After applying a few bandages and a crate of CD (for medicinal purposes of course!), I decided to tackle SG. "What's the story with you", I says. "Tappe Henning had a shocker, and not a peep out of you!"
"I think I'm getting ref'ed out." he sobbed (guess I shouldn't have shoulder-charged him). "I've been concentrating on the crap refereeing for so long that I've got to the point were I just see performances like that as normal!"
Well I was gob-smacked! I couldn't see an easy way out of this one, so I switched plays. "You're written the odd rant in your time. I seem to remember a bullsh*t story about bloody milk bottle tops or some such! Why don't you concentrate on those for a while?"
The gleam in his eye rekindled. "You're right!" he said. "There nothing like taking a topic thats annoying the hell out of you and ranting about it!
He almost looked like he was going to hug me for a moment, but I think the right jab to his head changed his mind!
So I moved onto AT. I must admit his level of contribution in the last month or so has been so low that I assumed he had died and I just hadn't been invited to the funeral! (Well, he never had quite forgiven me for the rumour I spread about him idolises Robbie Fleck).
Since he never answers his emails I gave him a call at work. The phone rang about 12 times and then a sleepy voice answered, "uggggh...hello?"
I started out slowly, "AT, it's BT here. Do you remember me? I'm the guy that praises your articles and puts your name in lights for all the world to see."
I heard the sounds of panic at the other end of the phone, "Oh, ah...hi BT, what can I do for you?"
And then let him have it, "Well you can start by explaining why the hell you haven't contributed anything to the site in months! Your photo journalism is second to none on my staff of contributors AT, your public needs you!"
"Well BT, I can explain. You see ever since Jules quit working here I've had to take on his job as well as my own, and the management here have introduced this really strict policy about surfing non-work related material during work hours so I can't even visit the site during the day!"
"AT, that's complete bollocks. For one, you and I both know that Jules never did any work anyway, so with him not distracting you every 5 minutes with toilet jokes you should actually have more time to work on Rugbyheads! And in addition to that I have it on good authority that you are responsible for monitoring the internet usage at your company so you have no excuses not to surf anything you bloody well like!"
There was complete silence at the end of the line. I was onto him, as usual my analysis of the situation was spot on and AT had no comeback. So as not to humiliate him any more I simply said "I'll look forward to your next article mate." and hung up.
Well that was pretty much all the ring leaders, but I did contact Ben to find out why we hadn't received any reports on the fortunes of his beloved Wellington Lions. For the first time I had found someone with a decent excuse, and a solution as well.
It seems Ben is now in London, on his big OE. If the only rugby he gets exposed to is of the English variety then I can understand fully why he hasn't felt inspired to contribute! In any case he thought he had taken care of the situation by inviting his brother Jed to take over the mantle of resident Wellington fan. As Jed has been one of the few regular contributors of late I agreed that as an acceptable compromise and went looking elsewhere. (Although I will be on Jed's case too if we don't get a rousing report on why his beloved Wellington team didn't win the shield this weekend!)
I entertained the idea of rarking up our mates Barge and Geeves from across the Tasman, but then remembered that they had been far to vocal during the Super 12 and Tri-Nations (and we didn't want to hear any more crowing!) and in any case as there is no NPC-like comp in Australia all the Aussie players are probably working on their golf games anyway.
Pdeb and the boys at RugbyComp have been doing good things running the competition, so I don't really have a bone to pick with then, although it would be nice if they actually posted a few more articles about who won the competitions!
Ah but it's hard to find good help these days, especially when you pay like we do. Still I do this for the love of the game and so should these boys!
I'm sure this little hurry up will stir things up. If not, then I'll just have to resort to blackmail, again.
Boys, your public is calling. Don't disappoint them, or me.