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A good feeling

Meditation at 17:00, Friday June 2

On the basis of current form, this can hardly be coming from my logical brain. And yet if I closed my eyes, blocked all noise, it would still be shining from somewhere. A good feeling. A stubborn inclination that tonight the Blues shall win. Of course, I can’t be sure this hasn’t been implanted by some malicious Demon.

I noticed it first this morning, as I was waiting in the reception of a school, checking my phone. It endured throughout the various distractions of the day – although when I overheard two teachers discussing Carlton’s prospects, over the bloated sports section of a staffroom Herald Sun, I didn’t butt in with my prophecy, lest I’d have weakened it. The feeling was improved, even, by the typical shot of optimism a relief schoolteacher gets circa three o’clock on a Friday afternoon, farewelling students whose laboured paragraphs were in preparation for an exam that’ll be someone else’s labour to correct. And it was boosted more by whatever quantity of sugar was in the two muffins that bizarrely interrupted my trip home, as I was driving near a bakery in an area where I used to live. This second afternoon of winter was humbly cool, the streets still framed by happy, autumn refuse. The Eastern Freeway coursed towards an encouraging yellow glow, as my car’s speaker played the uplifting climax of a prodigal song from around 2015.

And now, as I sit to testify, an excursion to the MCG just a few hours ahead, it’s still there. The Blues will win. Like all Muggle soothsayers I’ve been wrong before (recently, I had an urgent sense we’d imminently thrash Collingwood as I descended Marvel Stadium from the Bulldogs loss), and yet I’d like to think this is different. Should I rationalise it, after all? Well, we’re more than due. And our standard bearer, our prime Angus, a top performer when he plays on emotion, is sure to be smarting from an undeserved blow struck by that most indiscriminate archer of late-night TV, Caroline Wilson. Furthermore, Harry, in the favourable climate of his own video podcast, didn’t appear as beleaguered by his goalkicking troubles as I’d feared. Furthermore, injuries have necessitated five players’ promotion from an all-conquering VFL side that last week dispatched the Swans on their home green. Rumour even points to Paddy Dow gracing the dugout as tactical sub – and based on his reserves form, he’ll be good for 15 touches even if he only plays a quarter. Furthermore, Clayton Oliver is not on the opposition. Furthermore, Melbourne aren’t exactly bulletproof at present. Furthermore, they ought to be sheepish from guilt at what was done to us with 11 seconds or milliseconds or grains of sand remaining in the penultimate H+A match of last season.

All of these stand as compelling justifications for a ‘feeling’ I suspect doesn’t really need them. No doubt it'll continue to pulse during dinner, the train ride, the walk to the below-capacity arena. If, heaven forbid, the Blues are to lose, I know if I later confront and chastise the ‘feeling’ it will claim to have only pertained to the excitement of going to the match itself – nothing about the result. Never mind. The Blues will win. You’d like a margin, for posterity, but this vibe I’m receiving doesn’t extend quite so far. Unsure of what’s been leading me – malicious Cartesian demon or otherwise – I hereby commit my prophecy to the kiln. 

MELBOURNE     3.3     5.6     7.11     8.13     (61)
CARLTON              1.2     2.5     5.6     6.8     (44)


Melbourne: Fritsch 2, Petracca, Neal-Bullen, Pickett, Spargo, van Rooyen, Gawn
Carlton: McKay 3, Acres, Curnow, Fisher


Melbourne: Petracca, Viney, Langdon, Lever, van Rooyen, Rivers
Carlton: Cripps, Cerra, Docherty, McKay, Weitering, Kemp


Melbourne: Bowey (concussion)
Carlton: Silvagni (hip)


Melbourne: James Harmes (replaced Bowey in the third quarter)
Carlton: Paddy Dow (replaced Jack Silvagni at half-time)


Crowd: 49,872 at the MCG

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