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A lost art
By David Gray
I'm a pessimist. I always will be. It's in my nature. Before this season started I predicted that we would finish nineteenth, and that was on one of my more optimistic days. I stand by this prediction, and I am now coming round to the fact that it might be lower than that. I know we've had a 'great' start (we've beaten Cardiff and Burnley! Champagne at the ready!), but we haven't yet tested ourselves against the bigger teams. And that defence is looking fairly fragile.

A lot of you will, by now, dislike me. However, before you judge a book by its cover (or judge a dodgy article on a dodgy beginning), let me explain myself. Take the match against Burnley, for instance. I brought along one of my friends to that game, who hasn't had the best of luck with the Watford matches he's been to. So far, he's seen us draw 0-0 against Cardiff and Rotherham, and lose 3-2 to Coventry. When I asked him if he wanted to come to a Watford match this weekend, he sounded suspicious. He asked me, 'Will there be any goals?' Of course, I could have referred to the match not so long ago which finished 7-4. Or that there has never been a 0-0 draw between Watford and Burnley. No. I told him that he may as well come because, as it was a 'Super Saver', it's only a quid.

And that's why I was delighted with the 3-1 win. It was so unexpected (for me anyway) that I lost my voice after the first goal because of all the excitement. And so that's why I knew we were going to lose to Reading. I prepared for it. Reading had just beaten Millwall 5-0, for heaven's sake. Once again, I ignored the fact that Millwall are bottom of the league. And I ignored the fact that it was a fairly even match until Millwall had their keeper sent off. And that we always tend to do well against the better teams. I was sure that Lita would terrorise our defence and score a brace, Convey would score a free kick and Sidwell would hit a screamer from thirty yards. Then we would get one back in the last five minutes. Maybe. If we were lucky.

As it happens, this is not what happened. In actual fact, Lita looked about as lively as a dead tortoise. With one leg. But, although 0-0 was perhaps not satisfactory for either side, I was pleasantly surprised at the eventual outcome. And, since then, we've even gone on to beat Derby, away from home! Blimey. If this carries on, I might have to rethink my original prediction. In fact, I think there might be a realistic possibility of us finishing in eighteenth place this season. And the happy pills that I've just taken have nothing to do with this prediction.

Sorry for ruining the hopes and ambitions of everyone who reads this article, but just think: next time you get one of those little things in life that would usually just pass you by unnoticed, just a little bit of pessimism will make that thing seem like heaven. Possibly. Although I don't know why that would be a good thing. Heaven's probably not such a great place anyway....