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for those that have not read d artagnans great article


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The forgotten ones.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I entered his street and immediately I knew which house was his…without looking at the numbers. His garden was his number…his identity.

Red, blue and white flowers carefully pruned, giving a show of a bygone age…perhaps gone but obviously not forgotten. The vibrant colours of blue, red and white told their own story. Carefully nurtured and carefully tended…and they told me so much about the man I had come to see. The basics had not only been done well…..they had been strictly and faithfully observed…followed to the letter….resulting in a show of pure magnificence.

Before I even chapped his door he was there inviting me in. And as we walked through his hallway I felt I was in a time warp…framed portraits dawned the wall…triggering my memory to remember players both my father and grandfather had spoken of. But furthermore there were pictures of players and managers I had never even heard of.

As we entered his living room I caught a glimpse of our former monarch gazing down at me and immediately recognised it as Annigoni’s portrait from the 1950’s of Queen Elizabeth the Second. And around the room I was taken back through time…some from my early years…but some even from before even my grandfather’s time. For there above the fireplace hung a picture of William of Orange on his white horse…victoriously crossing the Boyne.

At this point I knew my paper’s researchers had done their job well. This Ranger’s supporter was most certainly one who we would refer to as “old schoolâ€â€¦and that was exactly what my remit was. To interview one of the “forgotten onesâ€.

As I spoke with this old gent it was hard to believe that anyone could ever have taken issue with him….or the things he honoured and defended could ever be seen as offensive. His manner was assured…and his voice steady….you knew the moment you spoke to him that nothing but truth emanated from his lips.

“So how did it start I asked him…what was the catalyst ?â€

He thought long and hard before he spoke.

“Well it wasn’t just one thing†he said. “More a combination of factorsâ€.

I asked him to elaborate.

“At the time there was fairly vitriolic campaign against Rangers by certain sections of the media…no matter what Rangers fans did it would be reported in a negative fashionâ€

“Such as ?†I asked.

“Well when I was younger I attended a European match and we had a huge card display before the game…one of the biggest ever…with Saltires and Union Flags…it looked magnificent, but afterwards all the press would say was that Ibrox looked like a Nuremberg Rallyâ€

How ironic I thought. In a country where immigrants received classes in “Being British†that home grown British citizens showing their loyalty to flag and crown could be compared to Nazis.

“And it went on… he continued…bit by bit they kept chipping away…and the more they chipped the more defiant we became. We loved our club and refused to let it be tarnished by the negative press and their lies. We were fighting for more than a football club…we were fighting for a set of beliefs….a way of lifeâ€

As I listened to the old gent speak my memory was taken back and I remembered conversations with my grandparents about “the old Rangersâ€. To a time where supporting the club was not orchestrated like a directed play…tedious and predictable, lacking feeling and passion but was instead spontaneous…imaginative…colourful and not forced. To a time when banners and songs said so much about the people who sung them and what they believed in. When to be a Ranger truly reflected the person you were.

“And then of course there was the anti-sectarian initiativeâ€. …he continued. I listened in awe as the old gent recounted the impact of Holyrood’s legislative impact. I almost had to pinch myself to ensure I was hearing correctly. My sense of disbelief was due to the revelations years afterwards regarding the same Labour Party who had been the architects of this legislation. How could it be the same party whose “west coast mafia†was commonly spoken of in journalistic circles….whose own sectarian scandals exposed in places like Monklands…could have the gall to drive through such legislation. ?

“It was another time…another place†the old gent retorted. “Spin doctors and a favourable press ensured a smooth passageâ€

Ah “spin doctorsâ€â€¦.it had been years since I had heard anyone use that term….its use nowadays in politics was political suicide…for since this old gents day the spin doctors had been exposed for what they were ….professional liars who dressed up bad news or even worse… twisted and distorted the truth and misled the public.

“And what of those inside Ibrox….those with the power…what did they do to defend the club ?†I enquired.

He looked at me ruefully and thought long and hard before answering. “They say time is a great healer but I find it hard to forgive them. They were warned time and time again about the consequences of their failure to respond to the lies…to the accusations against the club. But they did not listen and they did not defend the club. Instead they pursued an agenda of appeasing the press and their lies…the only time they responded was when they themselves were criticised.â€

“And what affect did that have ?†I asked .

For the first time during our interview I saw emotion in the old gents eyes…not just sadness but a deep sense of pain. “In the end we came to realise that the club…the institution…the way of life we were fighting for bore no semblance to that which masqueraded as Rangers Football Club. They continued to appease the press and politicians to the point that they drove and banned their very own supporters from Ibrox itselfâ€

Had it not been for my previous research it would have been difficult to believe what the old gent was saying, but I knew it to be true. The difficult bit was trying to understand it. Hindsight only made it more difficult to understand exactly what the “guardians†of Rangers were trying to achieve.

For they had at their disposal this priceless gem…this body of people who lived for the Rangers…whose lives embodied everything which this club stood for…who were wonderful ambassadors for this once great club…and not only did the fail to hold onto this priceless gem…they actively threw it away. Unforgivable.

And of course the rest as they say is history. Rangers became a club without a soul…without traditions and lacking in heritage no longer an institution or a way of life. Ibrox…when fans bothered to attend…was like a morgue…devoid of spontaneous atmosphere…and the only singing was when the “customers†bothered to respond to the screen prompts pleading with them to sing.

And in that moment I knew the title to my forthcoming article...

It’s a true saying…. sometimes you only truly appreciate something when it is gone.

RANGERS FOREVER

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The forgotten ones.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I entered his street and immediately I knew which house was his…without looking at the numbers. His garden was his number…his identity.

Red, blue and white flowers carefully pruned, giving a show of a bygone age…perhaps gone but obviously not forgotten. The vibrant colours of blue, red and white told their own story. Carefully nurtured and carefully tended…and they told me so much about the man I had come to see. The basics had not only been done well…..they had been strictly and faithfully observed…followed to the letter….resulting in a show of pure magnificence.

Before I even chapped his door he was there inviting me in. And as we walked through his hallway I felt I was in a time warp…framed portraits dawned the wall…triggering my memory to remember players both my father and grandfather had spoken of. But furthermore there were pictures of players and managers I had never even heard of.

As we entered his living room I caught a glimpse of our former monarch gazing down at me and immediately recognised it as Annigoni’s portrait from the 1950’s of Queen Elizabeth the Second. And around the room I was taken back through time…some from my early years…but some even from before even my grandfather’s time. For there above the fireplace hung a picture of William of Orange on his white horse…victoriously crossing the Boyne.

At this point I knew my paper’s researchers had done their job well. This Ranger’s supporter was most certainly one who we would refer to as “old schoolâ€â€¦and that was exactly what my remit was. To interview one of the “forgotten onesâ€.

As I spoke with this old gent it was hard to believe that anyone could ever have taken issue with him….or the things he honoured and defended could ever be seen as offensive. His manner was assured…and his voice steady….you knew the moment you spoke to him that nothing but truth emanated from his lips.

“So how did it start I asked him…what was the catalyst ?â€

He thought long and hard before he spoke.

“Well it wasn’t just one thing†he said. “More a combination of factorsâ€.

I asked him to elaborate.

“At the time there was fairly vitriolic campaign against Rangers by certain sections of the media…no matter what Rangers fans did it would be reported in a negative fashionâ€

“Such as ?†I asked.

“Well when I was younger I attended a European match and we had a huge card display before the game…one of the biggest ever…with Saltires and Union Flags…it looked magnificent, but afterwards all the press would say was that Ibrox looked like a Nuremberg Rallyâ€

How ironic I thought. In a country where immigrants received classes in “Being British†that home grown British citizens showing their loyalty to flag and crown could be compared to Nazis.

“And it went on… he continued…bit by bit they kept chipping away…and the more they chipped the more defiant we became. We loved our club and refused to let it be tarnished by the negative press and their lies. We were fighting for more than a football club…we were fighting for a set of beliefs….a way of lifeâ€

As I listened to the old gent speak my memory was taken back and I remembered conversations with my grandparents about “the old Rangersâ€. To a time where supporting the club was not orchestrated like a directed play…tedious and predictable, lacking feeling and passion but was instead spontaneous…imaginative…colourful and not forced. To a time when banners and songs said so much about the people who sung them and what they believed in. When to be a Ranger truly reflected the person you were.

“And then of course there was the anti-sectarian initiativeâ€. …he continued. I listened in awe as the old gent recounted the impact of Holyrood’s legislative impact. I almost had to pinch myself to ensure I was hearing correctly. My sense of disbelief was due to the revelations years afterwards regarding the same Labour Party who had been the architects of this legislation. How could it be the same party whose “west coast mafia†was commonly spoken of in journalistic circles….whose own sectarian scandals exposed in places like Monklands…could have the gall to drive through such legislation. ?

“It was another time…another place†the old gent retorted. “Spin doctors and a favourable press ensured a smooth passageâ€

Ah “spin doctorsâ€â€¦.it had been years since I had heard anyone use that term….its use nowadays in politics was political suicide…for since this old gents day the spin doctors had been exposed for what they were ….professional liars who dressed up bad news or even worse… twisted and distorted the truth and misled the public.

“And what of those inside Ibrox….those with the power…what did they do to defend the club ?†I enquired.

He looked at me ruefully and thought long and hard before answering. “They say time is a great healer but I find it hard to forgive them. They were warned time and time again about the consequences of their failure to respond to the lies…to the accusations against the club. But they did not listen and they did not defend the club. Instead they pursued an agenda of appeasing the press and their lies…the only time they responded was when they themselves were criticised.â€

“And what affect did that have ?†I asked .

For the first time during our interview I saw emotion in the old gents eyes…not just sadness but a deep sense of pain. “In the end we came to realise that the club…the institution…the way of life we were fighting for bore no semblance to that which masqueraded as Rangers Football Club. They continued to appease the press and politicians to the point that they drove and banned their very own supporters from Ibrox itselfâ€

Had it not been for my previous research it would have been difficult to believe what the old gent was saying, but I knew it to be true. The difficult bit was trying to understand it. Hindsight only made it more difficult to understand exactly what the “guardians†of Rangers were trying to achieve.

For they had at their disposal this priceless gem…this body of people who lived for the Rangers…whose lives embodied everything which this club stood for…who were wonderful ambassadors for this once great club…and not only did the fail to hold onto this priceless gem…they actively threw it away. Unforgivable.

And of course the rest as they say is history. Rangers became a club without a soul…without traditions and lacking in heritage no longer an institution or a way of life. Ibrox…when fans bothered to attend…was like a morgue…devoid of spontaneous atmosphere…and the only singing was when the “customers†bothered to respond to the screen prompts pleading with them to sing.

And in that moment I knew the title to my forthcoming article...

It’s a true saying…. sometimes you only truly appreciate something when it is gone.

RANGERS FOREVER

Great stuff but the tragedy is it's panning out exactly like it ! :angry2: :sherlock:

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Why is there so much emphasis on press opinions?

Just chill out and go watch the football

because the club is heading in the direction that dart has said in his article, its not the same club i have loved all my life. i still love the club but hate the man that owns it.

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