A Warm Welcome back to the Palace "Eagles"

Posted by WOOLTONIAN on June 7, 2004, 12:22:48 PM

Presenting the Ancient Myth of Daedalus and Icarus


The Modern Fable of Where Eagles (Crystal Palace) Dare

Icarus, Son of Daedalus (the inventor) who dared to fly too near the sun on wings of feathers and wax.

Daedalus had been imprisoned by King Minos of Crete within the walls of his own invention, the Labyrinth. But the great craftsman's genius would not suffer captivity.
He made two pairs of wings by adhering feathers to a wooden frame with wax. Giving one pair to his son, he cautioned him that flying too near the sun would cause the wax to melt. But Icarus became ecstatic with the ability to fly and forgot his father's warning. The feathers came loose and Icarus plunged to his death in the sea.

Fans with a keen eye, will notice that the Crystal Palace badge above clearly shows a man's body on the Eagle chest. No? have another look. See the head, the left arm, torso and left leg of a man on the birds chest plumage?

Good, now we can begin (Editor's note - I think I need a new pair of specs).

The image you see is Icarus. Why have they got Icarus within the badge? The story begins 1988/89 season.

Daedalus (the pre-Christ Del boy), and his son Icarus (the pre-Christ Rodney) had been imprisoned in the Labyrinth (otherwise known as Division 2) for the sin of envy. Now at this time, “Red Bull - which gives you wings” was still a long way off, so over a couple of pints of Manns Mix and a packet of 10 Park Drive, our intrepid inventor started doodling on a beer mat.

“D’ya know” said Del-boy , “if our team Crystal Palace had wingers, we could well escape Division 2.”

Rodney’s eyes lit up, “You mean we could be playing teams like Luton, Derby and Norwich?

“Yes” said Del-boy, “but there are some even hotter teams up there amongst the Gods."

While Del-boy was throwing his next few pints down his neck, he started to explain about places such as Liverpool. Rodney sat in awe, listening to his father describe such landmarks as The Vines, The Lamplight and Ma Egertons. Places like The Sportsman, The Hoffenbrau and The Gladray where the weary traveller could dine on a feast of tits, breakfast dinner and tea. Could such places exist thought Rodney, they are difficult to imagine as being “Real Places.”

So the following morning off the two headed to their club with the cunning plan. Speaking to the board of directors about their idea, all those present greeted their plan enthusiastically and so the chairman approved their plan. Crystal Palace from that day on, was the venue of many victories, mostly won by the ingeniuty of the new “wing system.”

Great homage was paid to Del-boy.

Later that year, May 1989, they were promoted to Division 1. The euphoria in the streets and in the Crystal Palace* was there for all to see. As the new season dawned there was an air of excitement flowing around the Palace. But Del-boy urged caution.

“Let’s not get too carried away” he said, “remember the heat in games in the top flight, could be our undoing.”

But neither Rodney or the Palace fans gave heed, they were all too excited by the thought of travelling to heady places such as Liverpool.

On the 12th Septmeber 1989, Rodney and his Plonkers headed North. They could not contain their excitement on the way up on the train and copious amounts of shandy and dandelion and burdock flowed down their necks. On arrival at Lime Street our intrepid travellers decided to take in the sites.

Del-boy took them to the Pier Head and pointed up to the Liverbirds standing proudly. “We’re doomed, we’re doomed” said Rodney, “look, Liverpool have wingers too.”

The blood drained from the faces of the amassed Plonkers, as Del-boy explained about “Digger Achilles” the winger with wings on his heels.

“We’ll be alright” said Del Boy, “as long as we don’t fly to close to the KOP”. “I don’t understand” said Rodney. Del-boy pointed out that the heat generated from the Kop was so intense at times that steam actually rose from the crowd.

“Your pulling my plonker” said Rodney “or taking the piss” (little did he know).

So warnings ignored, off they headed to Anfield. What followed was an absolute massacre.

As Rodney and the Plonkers stood in their corner of the Road End they could do nothing but watch as the wings melted and fell off the Palace wingers as they flew too close to the Kop. Drawn like a moth to a flame, one by one the feathers came unstuck.

Nicol scored two. McMahon, Rush, Gillespie, Beardsley, Aldridge, Barnes (Digger) and Hysen all scored one a piece. 9-0 in all. Welcome Palace, to the Inferno forever known as Anfield.

Rodney looked at Del-boy (Icarus looked at Daedalus), “I don’t understand” said Icarus.

“But I warned you son,” said Daedalus “don’t fly so close to the Kop.”

“No I see that now” said Icarus “what I don’t understand, is why their wings did not melt too?”

Daedalus look lovingly at his son, the way a father always does and said “The Liverbirds wings are made of Bronze son.”

And so the myth was passed down and became legend.

Palace will be returning to the top flight this coming season. Don’t forget to give them a warm reception, the hotter the better. Watch them wilt under the heat of the Premier League. Daedalus now reincarnated as Dowie should again warn his high fliers, don’t fly too close to the Kop.

© Wooltonian 2004

*Crystal Palace. For those too young to remember the Crystal Palace was built for the Great Exhibition of 1851. All that ruddy fuss over a greenhouse, I ask yer.

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