It's going to be difficult to get to The Valley on Saturday with no effective public transport. A service from Victoria may suit train buffs, but I would have to get there first. An early start and at least five hours of driving does not appeal, so I may be obliged to listen to Cafc Player.
What I hope is that Emma will not be the reporter (although she seems to turn up more at away matches). I have nothing against women covering sports events but she is simply not good enough.
She breaks one of the cardinal rules of radio: no dead air. Last week Radio Wales asked me at about 20 minutes notice to do an interview on Tiger Woods. I know virtually nothing about golf and very little about Tiger Woods (his Swedish wife seems rather fetching and it is curious but not that surprising that most of the women involved in the alleged bimbo eruption seem to be rather similar in appearance).
Although the studio is a minute from my office, I didn't have much time to do any prep. The first question came out of left field, so I started to talk about David Beckham (the link being sponsorship). Result: no dead air and the producer thanked me for 'carrying that for us'.
Radio Wales actually pay which Radio 5 (who sometimes get me out of bed at the crack of dawn) and Sky do not. There was one exception when I happened to be in Kew in the middle of the day on a weekday and Sky rang up and said could they send a car over from Isleworth as they were short for their live programming. So I went over and did some carrying (the Sky gallery is very professional). Thinking I had achieved my fifteen minutes of fame (thirty minutes in fact), I asked the producer afterwards who would be watching: 'we get quite an audience on oil rigs at this time of day.'
They paid me quite generously. More typical was when I was about to have Sunday lunch one day and they rang up to say 'It's a slow news day. We're sending you the Milton Keynes satellite truck. Get in front of the Shakespeare birthplace at Stratford and talk about Englishness.' It was a summer's day and Japanese tourists thought I was part of the package.
On another occasion I was heading for a game at Charlton and Sky sent a car to Marylebone so that I could do a slot at the Millbank studio. I am quite familiar with Millbank which has a fixed camera position with an audio link to the Isleworth gallery. As it so happened, an old friend who I hadn't seen for some time was doing the slot before me and I had a chat before I had to rush in. I had forgot to tell my wife about the camera position, so viewers must have been bemused to suddenly see a woman in a Charlton shirt walk behind me.
Back to Emma. She generally runs some way behind the action and speaks very slow-ly with long pauses in between. A typical report would be something like this: 'Dead air ... distant roar from the Addickted ... Emma: I think Charlton Athletic have scored ... The ball seems to be in the back of the net ... The players appear to be celebrating ... They are hugging a fellow player ... Is it Elliot? ... No, I think it's Semedo [Announcer in background: Goal scorer for Charlton Athletic in the 57th minute, Deon Burton].'
There is increasing hope that Leamington's needle derby match with Rugby Town on Boxing Day will be on. However, reports from the Isles of Scilly suggest that the Garrison Field is waterlogged and the traditional Boxing Day match may be off. (Stop press: I have just learnt from Radio Scilly that the Boxing Day match at the Garrison Field is definitely on, kick off 10.30 a.m.)