Tokyo Crusaders vs Aberdeen Angels 12 May, 2018 There I was…in Rey’s car…Jerry riding shotgun Rey driving. We had confirmed that the time we were shooting for was incorrect and we were to arrive at the Tatsumi station at 1400…45 minutes later than Sparrow had anticipated and 30 minutes later than Owen had set…but the culprit who set the time on Teamsnap to arrive at 1400 still has yet to be uncovered. Alas, let me take you on a journey…one with beer, love, disappointments, and Frank. “The smell of disappointment” Fast forward…to the pitch, The Angels had brought a massive number of warriors as the Cru could only muster up 25 players to represent our forces one of which Junki (love that guy) just finished playing a game prior and had to start for us right after, this is his fault and not our own. During warm ups the Cru had all black training shirts for once, except for Frank and Gaz…yeah I’m throwing them out there (we finally were about to look like a team). When it was time to open the gate a strong wind blew across the pitch from the Angels to us and it smelt like the floor of Geronimo’s after Jerry had thrown up into his kit bag and proceeded to use it for days without washing it, but to us it was a smell that war was on the horizon and we would be fighting an enemy that would be immune to pain…like a gorilla on PCP. “Jerry’s last stand” The clock hit 1315 and we still were not ready…so after many WTF’s and yelling the ball finally went flying at 1317 and the Aberdeen Angels were off to the races. They came in with such a force resembling a Rhino that had been given only Viagra pills to eat for the last 45 Days, Jerry was the first to be pinned down against his will, claiming he heard a pop in his shoulder…this was @ 1320 as our Man Friday had been damaged we knew the drunken advances of the Angels would not be Heavenly. The Angels had attacked first and proved that they were here for drinking and not just rugby. Gibbo had signed over to the sidelines signaling the Cru needed the help of the goggles. I quickly jumped into the war zone like D-Day on Normandy Beach fighting rucks and fighting for meters. Frank had been tackled so I quickly protected him and heard him let out a, “Ah bloody ‘ell mate!” Then the ball was pitched to Cocksy who heard Frank’s complaint and turned it into a try. The Angels had been pushed back and Sparrow kicked the conversion to prove that today we were Atheists and didn’t believe in the hierarchy in the sky. Then the Angels scored two more times as if they were there to punish the non-believers….Blasphemy!!!! “Down but not out” The halftime speech had commenced and Brett (My Always) had relit the fire into the Crusaders just as they did back in Jerusalem on those fateful nights. I could see the fire in everyone’s eyes we looked over at Jerry and I asked him if he was able to go back into the fire zone and he replied with, “Huh?” 1601 the ball was in the air and we knew our fate were still undecided, Dom had taken the speech to heart as he did some special Dom moves, “You’d understand if you were there, but if you don’t maybe you should get off your ass and turn up more…you know who you are!” Dom had floated through the Angels defense as if he was Lucifer himself before he got thrown out of heaven before he gracefully put the ball down for a try, but this had angered God as he made Sparrow miss the conversion as punishment for Dom angering the forces of the universe. Brenden had decided he was out for blood as Stew had promised him a free bell ring if he had managed to score a try, he gained yards as his drunken stupor had been shut down again and again…(Maybe we should motivate our team with more of these incentives???) Brent was in awe at the hard work Dom had put in and decided that he wanted to be just like Dom when he grew up and danced around the defense for a try just eight minutes later. It was a glorious sight to be behold as Brent’s girlfriend (I forgot her name…let’s just call her Abigale) let out a subtle “Oh my!” It was an “Oh my” so magical that it pushed Sparrow to make the conversion without any effort, as he was going through a confusing state in his life as if maybe he really was Foster or not…The Angels did not let up as our forces were dwindling and they kept replacing horny rhino after horny rhino…we knew that the Angels had taken over today but we were yet to give up as Yuuki at the very last few moments decided he wasn’t going to be forced to attend church. Scored a try to seal our fate sadly Sparrow had his wings clipped at this point and missed the final conversion. Final score 24-43 Angels… “But wait, there’s more!” The Cru had been beaten, but our spirits were still high as we know that sportsmanship is one of the core values of the Tokyo Crusaders RFC. We shook hands with the Angels and sang their song on the pitch as well as enjoyed some brews that Corey had brought down (That guy is pretty cool if I say so myself, also single if some of you ladies want to hook him up, he’s got a stable job, big house, and just a dashing young fellow…sorry I got distracted…). The showers were a victory in themselves due to the fact that they had hot water which can be hard to come by after a game. Unfortunately, Brent had to accept his sacrifice as a Zulu warrior and straight arm a beer while next to an Angel wearing a speedo…man did he show off his skills. Thus began our journey to Andy’s with beer in hand (not for very long sadly as they went through three cases of beer in just under an hour). “Andy’s has a Quack or two” The place had reeked of beer but in a good was as we walked in to see an ocean of cherry blossoms and ducks…quacking was heard in the distance and we were confused but not scared as Tooley took the lead to charge us into another dim and shady looking area. We quickly mixed up with the enemy but instantly knew the battle was over and we were celebrating with brothers, Jay was quick to drink his beer but only after he had noticed there was a tiny rubber duckling floating in it, which held the same rules as the golf balls, and this was the reason why quacking was heard in the distance. The teams were together and we decided it was time to announce the 3-2-1’s: Tom Cocks the “ginger tower” himself had demolished the competition with Dominic Sumner right behind as his try did not go unnoticed, and then our Captain Brett “My Always” Pentland-Smith took third but somehow Frank “the tank” Saffery has stolen the hearts of our opposition with his posh attitude. Where there is glory there are also dicks and our dicks of the Day were Gaz “Tom Cocks” Lim for dropping the ball while dressed up as a knight of 90’s rollerblading down the beach in San Francisco, Brendan “I’m not sober” Gallagher for showing up late for the game and having an amazing 2nd half…just imagine if he showed up for the full game. Then finally Sean “Viagra” Gibson…I forgot what he did but he must’ve been a dick. Each of these dicks were to drink from a prosthetic leg that one of the Angels actually played in…seems fitting. The Crusaders knew that we could only hope to win the one race we knew we were strong in “The Boat Race,” but it wasn’t time for that yet as we needed a Row “Slow” Boat Race for the two slowest drinkers on the team, Tooley and Gaz…which we should’ve been disqualified for instantly since Gaz doesn’t know when to start drinking…sadly the Angels beat us while Tooley was still sipping on his beer…but we arose in our drunken spirits to demolish the boat race. Nine of us held our beers high as we drank as if our livers depended on it, finally the Cru was victorious. The Japanese family were full of regret when the final challenge of putting the condom on Jerry’s head had come out. The Angels had put a condom on their teammates head better than Jerry proving they had more practice at putting it on the wrong head…but it was time to say hello to Stew in Roppongi as the food and brew had run dry and we needed more. “If you’re still here, you’re family” The teams had joined forces and occupied Mogombos as the Germans occupied Europe with a swarm of accents and a thirst for beer. The teams were drunk but we were approachable as we had begun a choir of songs that may’ve been rated R for some listeners…I mean c’mon it was Saturday and Saturday is a Rugby day. There were gales of laughter and deep discussions on when the Cru would make it out to Hong Kong, I mean this sounds promising we should do it. Beer was flowing like a waterfall and the James “Brokeback” Duncan brought up his prior experiences as a bull rider…thus creating a new game of people riding each other…(not in a sexual way) trying to get each other off…(this does sound questionable). Then slowly the bar started emptying one by one…until finally I closed a taxi door and the night went dark… Thanks for being one of my best mates Jerry and bringing the Crusaders into my life. It won’t be the same without you here, cheers until next time and save me a beer in Arizona. -Corey.