Misadventures in Wonderland: Amazing Gracies Women's Football Team
Our intrepid columnist Alice tells us what she learned the LGBT-friendly sports club
What did I go to?
Amazing Gracies is an LGBT-friendly women’s football club that has a friendly kick-about vibe. Being a women’s team wasn’t what made it particularly adventurous, nor was it the LGBT part. I went because I’m a misery and have to go to things that I wouldn’t normally do. Despite it being the world’s most popular sport, I had no intentions of ever trying organised kicking for myself. So as the winter months come in (starting 16 weeks ago), I also chose this because it may or may not be close to my house.
What is football?
Good question. Pointless nonsense, I think? I’m not going to be such a stereotypical idiot girl about this but really, I have never played or felt that I ever wanted to play or even watch football. I’ve served my time with friends who put it on TV. I made sure I’d ask key questions so I’d seem sociable and keen, like: ‘which team is which?’ and: ‘how long does this go on for?’ Are professional footballers just folk that have taken a hobby too far? Kick something then get really into it: surely that’s what people do when they have anger issues? I guess rugby is getting squashed regularly and tennis is just self-defence from neon missiles while you try not to get stains on your Puma hot pants. What happened to the part of my brain that cares about this stuff? When I was standing outside the pitch, behind the metal fence which presumably was keeping all the sport in, I had a horrible flashback to the ‘time to avoid PE’ feeling. I was two minutes from telling the organiser than I was on my period.
What’s it like being part of a team?
Really great, actually. Being part of a team is something that non-sporty people maybe won’t really be able to get on board with. I fall into that category: I’ve just been a lone wolf in my exercise routine of going to get milk once every three days. In every other class or group I’ve been to, I’ve been doing it by myself but in a room full of people; this felt more inclusive. I had to pull my weight (hmmm) and play nice. However, because of a high turn-out, I was an extra player on the green team, which probably was more of a hindrance than a help: like how energy-saving light bulbs seem to make the room darker.
Was the LGBT aspect a big part of it?
No. Well, not for me. As straight women are welcome and no one seemed to care about how into guys I was, the matter didn’t come up. I’ve been to a lot of places with this column and this was one of the most welcoming. I’ve always admired the different LGBT community support systems but because sexuality almost seemed irrelevant here, I reckon this was simply a case of it being a good group of people.
Did I score?
No. Of course not.
Amazing Gracies Women's Football Club meets every Wednesday at Drummond Community High School, Edinburgh.