Date: 17th December 2014 at 1:05pm
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A guest post about a novel and unfortunately impossible idea- The Vital Forum Awards Dinner

This year we had a splendid group in attendance at our dinner,

Ably led by Santa Phil, who was definitely looking slimmer!

“FFP is hitting hard,” the man was heard to say,

As he corralled his stamping reindeer and parked his pukka sleigh.

“Even your worthy chairman, has had to cut back on the goodies,

Making do with ‘Aldi`s best`, whilst fraternising with the masses!”

Aussie Mike overhearing this, expressed his deep regret,

But couldn`t fathom how this was, if the bills had all been met!

“What`s happened to your ‘Sky account`? As ever he was frank.

500 million up in smoke and nothing in the bank!”

Gartside shrugged and waved his hand in a gesture of dismissal,

Provoking Mike into a rage. You could fairly see him bristle!

But he was quickly ushered to his seat and told to leave it there,

Still red of face and blazing mad. He didn`t even swear!

Meanwhile, ‘The Lion of Vienna Suite`, proved an absolute delight,

We even got a pint of beer, without queuing through the night!

With everyone in their allotted place Santa stowed his bulging sack,

Before opening with a simple prayer which took everyone aback!

Then he introduced the special guest, to each and everyone,

No other than that ‘august` bloke, King Edward of Macron!

Convivial banter filled the room. The service was aplomb,

While complementary drinks throughout, went down like a bomb!

But the clinking sound of spoon on glass brought everyone to heel,

As Santa Gartside cleared his throat and prepared to give his spiel.

He made no excuse about lack of funds, and rarely gave an inch,

Even when the members booed, he didn`t seem to flinch!

Said everything was ‘tickety-boo`, and the deficit merely equity,
But the judgement there was obvious, “Guilty of financial laxity!”

However, time was of the essence and he was quickly losing face,

So he grabbed the list of new awards and moved things on apace.

“For being a great benefactor and Bolton`s biggest fan,

The ‘Special Lifetime Achievement`, goes to Eddie from the IOM!

And along with the usual silver mug, for a guy that`s really swell,

A bumper cheque for 6 million quid.”….. Boy, didn`t he do well!

Eddie accepted gracefully, when all was said and done,

Then made a further gesture. Yes! A new kettle for everyone!

The prize for ‘Best Vital Member`, was given to ‘Skopelos Chris`,

A Bolton shirt from Macron. Of course he was overwhelmed by this

Surprised and utterly gob-smacked, he wore it with such pride,

No mean feat to win this. But it was always cut and dried.

At this, the proceeding`s half-way mark, Gartside played his ace,

And introduced ‘the gaffer`, who cut immediately to the chase.

“I`m not here to make excuses, we`re doing the best we can,

So you`ll be glad to know I`ve done away with Dougie`s lousy plan!

We`ve put the hours in training, got the proverbial by the horns,

But it takes some players longer, before what we`re after dawns!

I don`t think we`re a top-six team, but encouraging signs are there,

Our defence is now much better. Midfield has a lot more flair.

The strikers are a problem in that they rarely score a goal,

But now that I`ve signed Eidur, I`m happier on the whole!

He finished with a beaming smile, then thanked everyone he knew,

From Johan and the coaches, even the canteen workers too!

He quickly resumed his seat once more, with apparently no regrets,

Never one to prevaricate, nor ever hedge his bets!

By now the group was in flippant mood and frankly rather boozy,

So, it was time for the final two awards and the first is a real douzy!

For being a genuine Bolton fan and so-called ‘Vital superstar`,

The award of a ‘Tower FM` radio, so he can listen from afar!

Of course, we speak of ‘PE Fred`, as he is affectionately known,

Marooned in Arsenal territory, and a Wanderers` ‘no-go zone`!

But he has carried the torch for many years in that forsaken land,

So along with our admiration, goes a ‘Macron head sweatband`!

Santa Phil`s last award, was for the annual ‘Wooden Plaque`,

A prize so craved by members, some refuse to give it back!

It was given for ‘Vital Bolton` posts written with fortitude and guile,

For insight and cogent argument, fluency and style.

He said, “This has been a bumper year with bloggers by the score,

So, choosing a final winner meant, he had to be top drawer.

Many have proved their excellence and deserve this accolade,

But it needed something special, for them to make top grade.

So, for his unparalleled statistics and unflinching attitude,

Congratulations to Robmoss, this year. You are one cool dude!”

At this point, Nicky Thompson stood and raised his glass on high,

And proposed a toast to the Wanderers, albeit with a sigh!

Then our diplomatic editor, being tactful to the end,

Glanced around his audience, and winked at Neil like a friend.

He added, “It falls to me this evening, to thank the powers that be,

So, here`s to Phil and Eddie! Their input has been key.

And to show our thanks, let`s hear it, for all they have achieved,

Hip Hip!..HIP HIP!”…Silence. It appears everyone there was peeved!


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