Murakami-fuelled Commentary Madness

Haruki Murakami: Unwittingly influencing people's perceptions of Wrexham matches since 2014.
Haruki Murakami: Unwittingly influencing people’s perceptions of Wrexham matches since 2014.

I’m looking forward to today’s match. Really looking forward to it. Really, really, really, really, really, really, REALLY looking forward to it.

But I need to calm down first.

The reason for my heightened state is simple. My wife caught an early train to London this morning to get to the front of the queue for a Haruki Murakami book signing. Murakami can best be described as a cult author in the “Absolute Mentalist” genre. He’s very strange and seems to have no meaningful grip on reality. Right now, I know how he feels.

You see, when I say we went for the early train, I mean the EARLY train. Murakami doesn’t do public appearances (his only other British appearance was during the Edinburgh Festival, when he answered questions by claiming he couldn’t remember the plots of his books! He sounds like a harder interview than Meg Ryan!)


Therefore, when he does something like this, the crowds are going to be crazy, and he’s only signing a limited number of books, so she had to get there early to compete with the people who are camp out whenever Murakami,or one of his books, makes an appearance!

We were up at three to get to Chester for the train, and here’s where it gets fun. I just couldn’t be bothered to go back to bed, so I’ve spent the last six hours wandering around Chester, finding late night/early morning spots that will serve me coffee.

By kick-off today, when I’ll be commentating on the Woking game for Wrexham Player, I’ll have been up for fifteen hours and full of more coffee than this guy! Anything could happen!

It won’t be the first commentary I’ve done in extreme conditions. I once refereed a school football match after work then rushed straight to Bury to commentate in my wet kit, arriving in time but finding I’d left my change of clothes at home rather than in the boot of my car! Gigg Lane’s cold on a Winter evening when you’re in a sweaty footy shirt and shorts!

I’ve also commentated balanced on the advertising hoardings around the pitch. That was for Joey Jones’ testimonial – it was played after the last game of the season and I arrived at The Racecourse to find HTV had dismantled their gantry, so the TV cameraman and I had to balance ourselves on the boards in front of the Mold Road Stand and hope for the best. Amazingly, we managed to stay up there for the whole game, despite the fact that the players tried to hit us with the ball throughout!

However, I’ve never commentated on a game suffering from sleep deprivation and caffeine overdose. In one of Murakami’s stories a little green monster burrows up into a woman’s garden to propose to her. He might make a reappearance in my commentary, I think!

When I searched Google for the above picture of Murakami, one of the first results was a photoshop with the following caption: “Why take cocaine when you can read Murakami?” Well, why read Murakami when you can get equally wired by taking someone to see him? If you’re listening to the game this afternoon, it could get nteresting!

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