August 7 2017: Odd’s and sods

When they talk of the magic of the FA Cup – or, indeed, of the Vase – perhaps they also embrace the joy of scrolling down the early round results and letting the imagination wander wantonly around the names.

The 185th and last tie at the weekend featured Odd Down – a suburb of Bath, it transpires – though for Keith Bell it recalled his early forays into 5s and 3s, back home in Co Durham.

Old hands, says Keith – long in Canada – would suggest that he had played an odd down. Don’t we all. There’s another reason for all this, however, to which shamelessly – and in about six paragraphs – we shall return.

Were there a bucket list of clubs to visit it would certainly include Bemerton Heath Harlequins, Boldmere St Michael’s and the blessed Leicester Nirvana, all in action last weekend.

They might be joined by Northampton on Chenecks – who? – Badshot Lea, Highmoor Ibis and the glorious Brimscombe and Thrupp.

The FA’s expansionist ambition is also evident in the presence of FC Romania, Sporting Bengal, Eversley and California and Wick, which when last encountered was at the end of a very long railway line in Caithness.

The church is also well represented. There’s Glebe (which is church land), Hassocks (which are kneelers)) and, of course, a great army of saints marching in and out.

Vegetarians might want to support Cheddar, vegans Quorn.

Keith’s email is particularly welcome, however, because it offers the opportunity to record that the 5s and 3s summer league at the Brit came to a conclusion tonight. Seventeen of us entered; the trophy resides here.

Ah, the magic of the cup.