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Songs: The Peterborough All-Saints Wide Game Team (group B)

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The Wide Game was a game that we used to play in scouts
We'd go to the park after dark and, basically, run about
There was a local competition that took place every year
We needed a team that could win, or at least come somewhere near
So the football heroes, and the popular kids - the boys who got the girls
Carried the hopes of all the troop, but there were two teams because

There was a bed-wetter, a backwards kid, a big fat lad and me
In the Peterborough All-Saints Wide Game Team (group b)

Skip took us all to one side and said "Scouts do your best
Team A, i want you to go for the cup, Team B try and not get in a mess"
The macho lads were confident, set off with fire and noise
Got into fights all that night and failed to score a point
But while we might have disappointed Lord Baden-Powell
We did surprisingly well

For a bed-wetter, a backwards kid, a big fat lad and me
We were the Peterborough All-Saints Wide Game Team (group b)

And when we got back
To the safety of the pack
They were surprised to see we had
Secreted in our bag
A trophy engraved with "In Second Place"
And then the following list of names

There was a bed-wetter, a backwards kid, a big fat lad and me
It said "The Peterborough All-Saints Wide Game Team (group b)"

And if you're thinking this must be some kind of metaphor
For a way of life, well you might be right, and i'll tell you something more
Since that day, i've realised you can be a star
No matter what your lot in life, even if you are

A bed-wetter, a backwards kid, or a big fat lad like me
You can join the Peterborough All-Saints Wide Game Team (group b)
Come join the Peterborough All-Saints Wide Game Team (group b)

Published by Wipe Out Music Publishing

Ooh, I really REALLY like this song. Pretty much everything in this song is true as it happened - the wide game WAS a game we played in Scouts, and the big annual version involved all the local scout packs DESCENDING on Eye Brick Pits to run around in the dark for a few hours. In theory you were supposed to find check points where you could complete a task of some description - one I remember doing was trying to tie a knot in some spaghetti, which was hampered because the two scout leaders in charge of it hadn't managed to get the water boiling properly. If you completed the task you were given an EGG, and for every egg you returned safely to BASE you got a POINT. There were also Venture Scouts (who I've always found CREEPY) wandering around whose job was to try and CRUSH any eggs they found, so you were meant to SLINK back to base SNEEKILY in the darkness without being seen.

That was the plan, but most people took the opportunity to WHOOP around in the dark fighting each other. As stated in the song, our PACK's main team did exactly this, whilst us leftovers were one of very few who played the game as stated and got, I think, TWO eggs back to base. We were AMAZED to discover we'd thus got into a TROPHY position, even though we had to share it with two other teams, and we GLOWED with pride when it was finally our turn to have the trophy in our bit of the Church Hall. Needless to say, Group A were NOT particularly impressed by it. At ALL.

So yes, this was part of my childhood that had always stood out as GRATE, and was a story I told MANY times in the pub, so when I decided to start writing songs ABOUT my own life, this was an obvious candidate. It's weird really, this is STILL in my solo live set, and it always seems to go across really well, and HEY! touch people. I'd spent years trying to write GENERIC NON-SPECIFIC SONGS that I thought would apply to everyone, so I was amazed when I found that something as VERY SPECIFIC INDEED as this song could actually manage to MEAN something to anybody else. It's lovely that that can happen, I think.

The "A Church Hall Of Sound (revisited)" single was recorded on September 8th 2000, because "Say It With Words" had been out for a few months, and I wanted to get something else released before the end of the year. The idea came about because Mr Whitaker from AAS had said how much he liked ANOTHER MAN'S LAUNDRY (HANGING ON YOUR LINE) and Rob, I think, had said the similar about FAMILY WEDDING 2021, and I got to thinking that there were a few songs on that cassette that I liked that hardly anyone had ever heard, so why not release them?

As ever, hardly anybody actually bought the single, and there were hardly any reviews of ANY description for it, so it gently slipped away into oblivion. It's one of the NICE things for me about doing this compilation that maybe a couple more people will get to hear these songs now, as I still love them!

Oh yeah, and while I'm here - DIG the backing vocals on this one! The "WAHEY!" bit was on the original demo, although I'm not sure if the "aaaah"s in the middle section were. Kev looked at me MOST peculiar whilst I did that bit.

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