Saturday, July 23, 2005

The character of a man is known from his conversations.

I started this blog with the intention of not talking about more personal things, but, maybe that was a naive starting point. Tonight I went to my local with my brother, and I got talking with a man I've spoken to several times before. There's not going to be any real conclusion to this post, or a lesson or moral, I just wanted to write about him. He's from Northern Ireland, in his 50's, with the brightest blues eyes you've probably ever seen, and he's called Jimmy. The first time I met him, I was wearing my United shirt, and he came over to shake my hand. He insisted on buying my pint, and introduced me to two of his friends (a Jamaican guy and a City fan). He had followed United his whole life, travelling up and down the country to see the away games, he told me. He used to take his younger brother to the games, sit him on the rail at the front, then go back in the crowds to watch the game. At the end, he would come and pick him up. As his brother got older, in to his teen years, he'd be taken to the games, and would get in to fights with all the opposition fans. His eyes filled up when he talked about the kickings he'd seen between the fans.

He's just a genuine bloke, who wears his heart on his sleeve. He tells me stories about Belfast, and football, and family and I could listen to him all day long. Instantly, I felt like I wanted to know him, which is a strange feeling for a twenty something to have for a fifty something, I imagine, but he really is a good man. An honourable man, who appologises if he swears in front of a woman, who will buy everyone at his table a drink, and who would give his word to a stranger, and you could bank pretty much anything on him keeping it. I hope I have half as much appeal and charisma when I'm his age.


At 9:45 PM, Blogger jenlou said...

i see that twinkle in your eye. you are the story someone else will tell one day - if you're willing to make the "pub for a dirty, american tavern" tradeoff...


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