A new study finds that fans are at risk of heart attacks because of the stress they experience at matches. Admittedly, the study was based on saliva samples from Brazilian fans: Cortisol levels
Probably Charlton fans place their mental health or at least their well-being more at risk than their physical health. I can't find anything in my life that is more associated with negativity and pessimism than Charlton. Indeed, my bestie thinks that not only am I tiring myself out by going to the other side of London from Warwickshire, but following such a down market club is not good for self esteem!
Non-league football is more fun. We exchange banter with the lino and laugh at the attempts to deliver pinpoint corners. At Charlton we feel a sense of despair when another corner goes into the side netting (as on Wednesday) or is easily caught by the keeper.
I don't think much of the study's suggestions for calming fans down at the end of the match by dimming the lighting or playing soothing music. Much better to play 'look on the bright side of life' that some New Age tune that would be approved by the Duchess of Sussex.
On the bus after Wednesday night I caught two well-known reprobates heading for the River Ale House for an after match libation. And why not? What better than a drink with fellow supporters?
Oh, I forgot, it's dry January. I got told off not observing it at the GP's the other week, despite my protestations that my birthday is in January.
Well, here are some wise words from Chapel Down (the winery in Tenterden, Kent) in their latest newsletter: 'Perhaps unsurprisingly, given a career peddling fine wines and spirits, I’ve never been a big fan of Dry January. It goes beyond a parochial concern for my industry though. Health advice from them-that-know says that there are far greater benefits to drinking less throughout the year, as opposed to one month of abstinence and then reverting to old habits.'
'So, to my mind, yes drink less throughout the year BUT then use the extra pennies to drink better! And that's the way it seems to be developing. Sales of higher quality drinks with real provenance continue to outpace the standard alternatives. Music to my ears!'
I should say that I am an investor in Chapel Down, but I can also recommend the River Ale House without any suggestions of bias.