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By Simon Devon
Going to football matches, I love every minute of it. A Saturday without a Watford fix is now unthinkable. My name is Simon Devon, I am a Watford addict.

My habit has grown worse over the last five years. Whereas before I was happy with the footballing equivalent of a quick fag behind the bike sheds, I'm now a total Watford smackhead.

Why? The Watford Mailing list.

Five years ago I used to go to matches on my own. I was at University and so were all my Watford chums from A-Level days. I should have stopped going and concentrated on saving my tiny grant, but I didn't. I still enjoyed the football, but everything else was missing. Travel to away games stopped (though I still managed the infamous Scarborough away trip) as it's pretty boring going on your own.

Then it happened. One day in 1994 whilst in the Computer Centre researching something for my University Radio show, I found a list of football mailing lists. My fate was sealed. A quick email to Gary Smith in South Africa and I, among with twelve others, was on the Watford Mailing List. Amazingly enough, as I was at the University of Hertfordshire (Hatfield Poly by any other name!), I was the closest to Watford! There were members from Singapore and Norway, but I was the only Hertfordshire resident on the list.

To tell you the truth, nothing really happened at first - the membership grew slowly. Then, someone called Ian Grant admitted to owning a web site devoted to Watford. Just after Jamie Moralee hit his first goal for Watford I saw this frightening bloke in the Vicarage Road end - he had a shaved head and an earring in his nose. He was wearing a bomber jacket and DM's. I went up to him and asked, "Excuse me, are you Ian Grant?" and it was. So, after a season or two of having no-one to talk to at matches I now at least had someone to say hello to.

I think that if I would have ended up going to matches on my own for much longer, I probably would have stopped going. However, as time went on, a few of us met up most weeks and the 'Top of the F' became ours. Since then we've formed a football team, had a Bash or two, made Nigel Gibbs a hero and even sponsored players.

Is it sad to make friends with people through the Internet? The tabloid newspapers would probably like us to think so, but let's look at like this. Last Saturday about eleven of us made the journey to Crewe by train:

Dr Dave
Pete + Laura
Andy 'Bazelli' Stocks
Alan 'Captain Chunder' Chatfield
John Parry, Dave Parry and their mate
Colette Jasset
Elvis Mark

How did we all meet? WML.
Would we have gone to Crewe as individuals? Maybe.
Are we all stereo-typical 'net head social misfits'? Well, I'd like to think not.
Would I go to half as many Watford matches as I do if WML didn't exist? No.

So, there we are. WML. It gave me people to talk to at football matches, it has led to me receiving perplexing phone calls from Rupert day and night and it has made it possible for you to be reading this article on BSaD.

I think it's been quite fun. Here's to the next 5 years of WML!