Imogen Clarke: Dye Hard With Hockey Sticks

We might not be top of the league table, but we’re guaranteed to be having the best time.

I HTie dye, the activity that was once confined only to summer camps and after-school clubs, is back with a vengeance. And you can find it on the hockey pitch.

What am I talking about? Ladies and gentlemen, allow me to introduce you to Dye Hard, the mixed hockey team of the century. We might not be top of the league table (though we’re slowly moving up) but we’re guaranteed to be having the best time out there on a Sunday afternoon, and a Monday night.

A force to be reckoned with, Bruce Willis stares down our opponents from the front of our spectacular home tie-dyed shirts, while the terrifying names of the likes of ‘Gramps’, ‘Mini’ and ‘Jesus’ have them shaking in their shin pads. The quality of our stash is just unparalleled. And if that hasn’t got them worried then you just wait until the sass begins…

As a team we might be a teeny, tiny bit gobby. We don’t tend to agree with any umpiring decision that doesn’t give us the ball. Queen of sass, Ali ‘Sitch’ Smith will happily tell you where to put that hockey stick you just fouled her with. Marcus ‘Gramps’ Adams will provide a running commentary of sarcasm against anyone who was in his way, umpires included. And then there’s Action. Action, who needs no other name, is the solid wall of backchat that stands in our goal. If you’re not nearly decapitated by one of his saves, then be prepared to be bowled over by his moderately insulting vocabulary.

So perhaps I’ve painted a bad picture so far. We’re not like this all the time I promise. Our captain alone, the overly enthusiastic all-round keen bean that is Sgray, keeps it all in balance. Her Facebook posts are things of legend. As is her vodka jelly. Becky ‘Jesus’ Lennon is our smiling ray of sunshine, and our own dark horse. Then there’s Rory, our bag-pipe playing cheerleader who, despite playing more shinty than hockey, wins for everyone’s favourite player. Fun fact: Rory’s team name ‘Bowl’ comes from the statue of his head, and its fabulous bowl haircut, which can be found in outside the library and museum in Paisley.

Sgray, Bridget, Jesus, Danger, Sitch, Bump, Bowl, Gramps, Action, Mini, Beaver, Groupie, BJ and Bolt are all coming for you.

We’ll see you on Sunday.

Yippee-ki-yay motherfucker.