Jim McNiven

Why Blue?

I have been receiving MCIVTA for two or so years and to be honest have never felt so close to the club for a long time, solely down to this newsletter. I have contributed a couple of time and I did the graphics for the www.mancity.net site but I have finally decided to get round to boring you all s**tless with my Why Blue.

I never thought that a “Why Blue” was in any way relevent to me. The very title assumes that at some stage a logical choice was made, where you sit down, weigh up the alternatives and plump for one club or another. Not me.

When I was brought into this world in Wythenshawe in 1970, my baby eyes slowly focused on the the people waiting to finally meet me. A tired and tearful mother, a proud and beaming father, and a 3-foot high sky blue and white teddy bear called “Franny”. Franny was my friend. I think that he psychologically scarred me, after all you don’t argue with something that is twice your size and furry. There was no way I could veer from the path and join the dark side when I had my giant blue guardian watching my every move. Franny went everywhere with me and was City Til He Went Bald, Fell Apart and Got Chucked in The Loft (when I was about 16).

My old man took me to loads of home games (except derbies because this was the seventies and he wa worried that it could get a bit out of hand). Just before we moved down south when I was eight, he wrote to Tony Book and asked if it was possible if we (him, me and my younger bro’) could meet a couple of the players. We got a letter from them that got us through the doors andinto the players’ lounge for an hour before the Baggies routed us 3-1 (at least some things have changed). There we met the whole team, and had our photies taken with them and filled an autograph book. Mick Channon was such a top bloke and spotting that we were all a bit awestruck boomed in his Wurzel Gummage voice “caam over eear laaads” and looked after us. I met my hero (and to be fair, possibly everyone’s), Peter Barnes and my lil bro’ met his – Asa Hartford. When we moved down south, my old man said we had to forget everything we had learned. We had to make a fresh start. We had to learn to support Palace. I know his heart wasn’t in it but Maine Road was too far to go and we needed our regular footie fix. We went to the match, trying to convince ourselves of the worthiness of John Burridge and Vince Hilaire. We left feeling like common whores, knowing we had done wrong. We have only visited Selhurst park since to see various p***-poor matches against Wimbledon and Palace. Now I only watch City when they play “dahn sauf” but with MCIVTA and the top geezers on the ICQ, I feel completely in touch with everything that’s going on. Shame that we are a complete pile of pants at the moment. But like every City fan, I know that when we do win the premiership (no hurry) It will taste so much sweeter. Compared to the Big Mac instant gratification of supporting the Scum it will be like a gourmet meal being served to a starving man and we will relish every single bite. We understand that in life you get out what you put in… and all this pain and frustration will be worth it, come the day!

First printed in: MCIVTA Newsletter #395 on


Jim McNiven