2012 Anti-Football Day

Fellow sufferers

Our annual protest lunch is on as usual for 2012 at the North Fitzroy Star Hotel on Saturday the 29th of September. See Google Map. The event starts around 12:30pm and finishes around 4pm when some of us are forced to leave to beat the post-game crush on public transport.

As you know, there are no TVs in the hotel so we can enjoy our lunch, drinks and conversation in blissful ignorance of the circus taking place in nearby Jolimont.

The other AFL’s annual report shows a $382,175,000 profit in 2011 and I reckon that’s after a fair bit of it is pumped into advertising. The real AFL only made about $30 profit last year and Veronica gave it to a charity. Our only source of income is people using the F(ooty)-word and putting coins in the penalty jar as punishment. We therefore rely on you for advertising our lunch and spreading the word to all sympathetic souls you know. Perhaps some of you young switched-on people can use that internet thingy to help us “go viral”.

2008 Football-free lunch

Following last years success, we’ve decided to do it again!

To celebrate the end of the football season and the return to more civilised pursuits, we’ve booked the sumptuous dining room at the North Fitzroy Star Hotel, on September 27th 2008.

We are inviting Anti-Football League members, sympathisers, and Melbourne football club supporters to join us for lunch at 1pm.

No mention of football will take place during the afternoon, a rule that will be enforced by eviction and two complimentary tickets to a Collingwood game.

Details –

When: Saturday September 27th 2008 from 1pm

Where: North Fitzroy Star Hotel, 28 St Georges Road, North Fitzroy (Map)

Cost: $55 – bookings are essential. $20 deposit, balance to be settled on the day.

Deposits: can be made through the Secure Paypal website (below) or by other arrangements (secretary@antifootballeague.org or 0424 045 800)

On Offer: A three course meal, includes tea and coffee.  A raffle will be held, all proceeds to Villa Maria. Anti-Footballing Ratbag Behaviour by AFL members may be witnessed.

Fine Print: Any dietary requirement should be directed to us here at AFL central, we’ll forward them on to the North Fitzroy Star. As we are organising the event, The star is not taking responsibility for bookings.

Reservations: Click the buy now link below –

Anti-Season Newsletter 2008

Fellow sufferers,

With the radio and television off and the newspaper cancelled for the cooler months, the Anti-Football League headquarters has been blissfully silent and football free. Unfortunately, since the pantry ran bare, your secretary has had to venture outside for sustenance. Strolling Melbourne’s wintry streets, I see things have changed little since this time last year – football still being played, broadcast and talked about in epidemic proportions.

In fact, things appear to have got worse. There’s talk of new teams joining the Australian Football League, with the Tasmanian Government putting their hand up for one of them.

I suppose there’s comfort in the fact that there are things that make the football season bearable. Opposition to it. And as ever, The Anti-Football League is looking forward to the conclusion of the season, with a few upcoming events.

As part of the Melbourne City Museum’s ‘Australian Rules: Around the Grounds‘ exhibition there will be a short lunchtime presentation for Anti-Football League members and sympathisers. Footy fans are also invited to attend, but may have to pass through a security screening process at the door.

Your secretary, Jack Dunstan, will present ‘Another perspective‘ a comprehensive history of the Anti-Football League, its achievements and failures, and why the ‘real’ AFL was reformed in 2007. There will also be an analysis of Australia’s curious obsession with sport.

This will be an opportunity to see rare photos and TV footage of the Anti-Football League, there might even be glimpse of Anti-Football League founder, Keith Dunstan, at the event.

The details are

Wednesday 13 August at 2pm

Melbourne City Museum
Old Treasury Building
Spring street, Melbourne

Cost: $8 full /$5 concession

Bookings are essential: (03) 9651 2233


Seats are limited.

AFL lapel badges and stickers will be available at the event. I hope to see you there!

Nominations for the 2008 Douglas Wilkie Medal are open, our annual accolade for the person who has done the least for football in the preceding 12 months. The recipient in 2007 was Dr Barry Jones, AO. This year the nominations are in a strong field, and include Melbourne Age cartoonist Michael Leunig and Jeffrey Browne, the GTV9 producer who took football ‘personality’ Sam Newman off The Footy Show.

We’ve also launched a new award for 2008. Tentatively titled the Sam Newman Award, this is a tribute to a footballer past or present that has had done the most to bring the game (or themselves) into disrepute. Those who are familiar with the ‘Darwin Awards’ or the ‘Golden Raspberries’ will appreciate the importance of celebrating mediocrity.

To nominate for either of these coveted titles, email us or nominate through our website.

Along with our AFL Lapel Badges, stickers are now available from The Anti-Football League. To compensate for unavoidable credit card charges, we are now bundling a sticker with every new badge sold. This package is now sold at $9. Stickers are sold in a pack of two, $6 plus postage. For more information:


The Anti-Football League is a non-profit organisation. Financial proceeds go to Villa Maria, a provider of disability and aged care services. For more information: http://www.villamaria.com.au

On a sad note, we mourn the loss of Former Victorian Premier Lindsay Thompson. Recipient of the 1981 Douglas Wilkie Medal, Mr Thompson’s move to have football banned on Sundays will not be forgotten.

A few members have asked if there will be Anti-Football Day event this year. For those who live in the Aussie Rules’ heartland of Victoria, stay tuned, and keep September 27th free. If members wish to organise an event in other states I will happily promote it through the website and mailing list.

Unless we see you on August 13th in Melbourne, The AFL thanks you for your support.

Yours in footballing apathy,

Jack Dunstan,

The Anti-Football League

Vale Lindsay Thompson

The Anti-Football League is sorry to see the passing of Lindsay Thompson, Former Victorian Premier and 1981 Douglas Wilkie Medal Winner. Despite being a proud Richmond Tigers fan – he was their number one ticket holder  – Mr. Thompson did contribute greatly to the Anti-Football cause.

Thompson put forward a move to have the dreaded game banned on Sundays,  through legislating it in Victorian Parliament. Alas, he was beaten on this one, and we can only hope what a wonderful place Australia would be if this utopia could have been reached.

His other efforts included paving the way for the export of the Victorian Football League to expand into other parts of the Australia. At the time, The Anti-Football League board thought this was a good thing. We had hoped Victoria would be liberated of football forever! Sadly, all this has meant is more games more often, in more places, and more talk about it.

Typically, we found it hard to find much about Mr Thompson’s anti-footballing exploits in the many glowing obituaries since his passing. We had to look further to find the facts. The UK’s Telegraph did mention Thompson’s AFL connections though, you can read about it here.

We will miss you Mr. Thompson. Thank you for you good work for the state  of Victoria and your sympathy for our cause.



The Anti-Football League made a brief appearance on ABC TV’s ‘Can We Help’ program on Friday (14th September 2007). The clip showed some very old footage of Keith Dunstan and members, some of which included the a football burial at sea in the 1980s.

The screening resulted in a heavy attack of comments on the AFL website guestbook, and a healthy number of new members eager to join. For those who missed it, the transcript can be found at the ABC website here…


A Grand Anti-Final Day Lunch

Fellow sufferers,

As you are no doubt painfully aware, the football season is in full swing. Talk of bad behaviour by players (and now broadcasters) is reaching record levels with no end in sight. Without doubt, this trend will continue until that dreaded ‘one day in September’, when supporters from both AFLs can collectively give a sigh of relief.

But what until then? Here at Anti-HQ we’ve been scratching our heads for ways to protect our members during this difficult time. The ongoing war on terror has pushed the cost of footy-proof bomb shelters out of the reach of our budget. We’ve even asked quarantine experts how to contain this ‘football disease’ that affects us all during September. Regrettably, they’re all tied up with some sick GGs at the moment, and couldn’t spare their time.

Dear members, there is a solution, and it means we can all be far from the MCG when the siren goes at the football grand final. Stones of the Yarra Valley will be hosting a ‘Anti-Grand Final Day’, complete with a specifically devised three course lunch. With a wine list that makes telephone books jealous, this event will be a far cry from the warm meat pies and the flat beer they’ll be serving in the Ponsford stand. The event will incorporate speeches, a raffle, and will strictly be, a football free event.

Briefly, the details:

Where: Stones of the Yarra Valley, 14 St. Hubert’s Road, Coldstream, Victoria. A map can be found here
When: 29th September 2007, 12 noon onwards.
Food: A three course lunch, includes tea and coffee.
Cost: $60 per person, excluding wine.
Bookings: Stones of the Yarra Valley – (03) 9739 0900
Further information: Through the Stones website: http://www.stonesoftheyarravalley.com/

Non-members and sympathisers are also very welcome, I hope to see you all there….

In other news,

We are counting up the votes for recipients of our Douglas Wilkie Award, and it looks like it’s going to be a pretty close race. We are still accepting nominations, so if you think someone has done nothing for football this year, in the best and fairest manner, let us know. You can do so by email, or through the nomination page on our website.

A warm welcome to new members and returning members to the Anti-Football League. Apologies to anyone who’s had delays receiving their lapel badges.

You can now find the Anti-Football League on online social networking sites such as Myspace and Facebook. (Not content with our own web page, we’ve infiltrated others as well).

Yours in sincere footballing dis-interest,

Jack Dunstan,

Wilkie Nominations ‘07

Fellow sufferers,
It’s a particularly bleak time of year, with the football finals just around the corner and persiflage on the topic reaching fever pitch. But hold firm, six weeks and it’ll all be over!

That said, Melbournians, who are generally the worst affected by the game, will be able to enjoy a football free grand final day on September 29th. We’re organising a little shin dig for those who need to escape the big smoke on the day, and far from Runt road. Members, keep you eyes on your email inbox, and your diaries free….

In regards to Douglas Wilkie nominations, there have been dozens, and all are being considered. Of the more humourous, we have received this one from John of Canberra.

Dear Sir,

I would like to nominate the Education Editor of “The Canberra Times” Ms Emma Macdonald, for the 2007 Douglas Wilkie Award. She has a regular column in the Sunday Canberra Times and today she wrote, under the single column headline “AFL in a league of its own in the sport of talk”:

THE NON-sports minded in our office often have a laugh at our sports-mad colleagues over the completely inane things which come from the mouths of footballers and their coaches when, presumably, the Dencorub fumes combine with too many blows to the head.

Now the real gems of sport-speak are doing the e-mail rounds and suggest AFL IQs may be the lowest of them all.

* “Nobody in football should be called a genius. A genius is a guy like Norman Einstein.” (Mick Malthouse, Collingwood coach.)

* “You guys line up alphabetically by height” and “you guys pair up in groups of three, then line up in a circle.” (Barry Hall, Sydney captain at training.)

* “He’s a guy who gets up at six o’clock in the morning regardless of what time it is.” (Essendon coach Kevin Sheedy on James Hird.)

* “Strangely, in slow motion replay, the ball seemed to hang in the air for even longer.” (Dermott Brereton.)

* “I told him, ‘Son, what is it with you. Is it ignorance or apathy?’ He said ‘Barass, I don’t know and I don’t care’.” (Ron Barassi talking about North Melbourne’s Gary Cowton.)



Citizen Laments 3

We recently received this letter from Trevor, from the AFL stronghold in Horsham, Victoria. Trevor has nobly purchased 20 badges and is spreading the good word throughout the Wimmera.

What a wonderful refreshing feeling it was when I heard that the AFL was returning. I now feel that I am not alone in this world and that there is now something to live for.

I have never understood football followers – let me be clear that I do understand the game somewhat, but certainly not the followers or the players.

I am not anti games or anti sport.

I was always of the understanding that a game is something one is involved in for the enjoyment of same. If so, why do people take it so seriously that they feel the need to assault each other, verbally abuse each other – both on and off the ground? Why are some people incapable of maintaining an intelligent conversation on any subject but football?

If football is supposedly so good for our youth, then why is football synonymous with excessive drinking, foul language, abuse, violence and anti social behaviour in general?

Why is assault a criminal act everywhere but on a football ground?

It’s one thing to watch a game, but then to feel the need to discuss, dissect, replay and re-live the game for every waking moment (and I suspect many non-waking moments) until the next game, is beyond my comprehension.

Why do television producers automatically assume that everyone is interested in football?

The endless, tiresome array of football related programs is simply mind-numbing, rivalled only by that other program called Big Brother and, for those of us old enough to remember, the test pattern.

Whenever I hear or read the term “football fan”, the words “no brains at all” come to mind. (sorry Keith!)

Could I ask when we will be taking legal action against the Australian Football League for stealing our name? The AFL was in use long before the VFL went national.

On a more serious note, Villa Maria could not be a better choice for AFL support, especially Gildas House, a service so lacking in Australia today.

Keep up the good work!


Thank you Trevor, and yes, we are deeply perturbed by the former VFL stealing our name. Look out for High Court action in the near future…

Collingwood Merchandise

Apparently, there’s a a team in the national football competition called the Collingwood Magpies. We wouldn’t know, here at AFL headquarters, we’re too busy doing other things.
We have been forwarded this photo however, taken of a Mildura storefront display.

Seen in a shop window in Mildura....

The juxtaposition of the Playboy bunny with an inflatable merchandise item is certainly suggestive. Maybe Collingwood’s recent ban on allowing players to attend strip clubs is a lot of huff and puff. Or, perhaps their marketing department has yet to get the message.

To members old and new, welcome!

    It has been a busy few weeks for the Anti-Football League, with orders for our lapel badges almost exhausting our current supply. Thank you to all who have purchased one, or ten (thanks Trevor!). You have all helped re-launch the AFL in its 40th year since conception.

    The press has certainly pushed things along, with a full page article by Damian Barratt in the Herald-Sun (12/05/07). Despite being a football writer, Mr Barratt gave us sympathetic coverage, which resulted in radio interviews and media discussion throughout the week. His article can be read online at –


    It is unknown if Mr Barratt has been excommunicated by his journalistic peers.

    Our website, antifootballleague.org, has been inundated with activity. Dozens of comments have been posted, most of them positive. A small amount of negative comment has also been received, which is only to be expected from those unfortunate souls yet to be ‘saved’.

    Just to let you know who is behind the current reincarnation of the AFL, it is wholly a family affair. Responsibilities have been divided between David Dunstan, and myself, Jack Dunstan, son and grandson of Keith Dunstan respectively. The founder Keith, remains chief patron, and provides moral support and wise counsel to ensure the AFL stays on course.

    This year, we will be awarding the Douglas Wilkie Award (our answer to the Brownlow medal) to the person who has done the least for football throughout the year. We encourage all members to nominate anyone who they feel is suitably deserving of this coveted accolade. The ceremony will take place on Anti-Football Day, which falls on the 22nd of September, just before another ‘day in September’ that need not be mentioned.

    On a serious note, many of you have handed monies to the AFL in purchasing a badge, and are probably keen to know where such funds are going. Our nominated charity is Villa Maria, a provider of aged and disability services based here in Melbourne. Villa Maria is currently undertaking the construction of a new residential care facility in Alphington, Victoria. This will house ten young people who require complex and high levels of care. Currently, many young people who have high care needs are forced to live in nursing homes, which are unable to provide adequate or appropriate care for their rehabilitation and/or lifestyles. Regrettably, over 6,500 young people in Australia currently in this position.

    Villa Maria’s new project is one of the first facilities of its type in this sector of health care. The success of this initiative will hopefully encourage other care providers to follow suit in this under-funded and under-represented area of health care delivery.

    Villa Maria’s press release regarding this issue can be read here.

    That’s enough for the moment. Be sure to forward this email on to any prospective Anti-Footballers. If you have bought badges for others, do ask them to send their email address onto us, and we’ll keep them posted also.

    Yours in sincere footballing dis-interest,

Jack Dunstan,
AFL Secretary.