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Good Sports and Great Dads


With special guests:

  • Peter FitzSimons
  • Neil Young

Our guests today have both written about what it means to be a father and they let us in on some of the influences that have shaped the way they relate to their children.

Peter FitzSimons is well known through his exploits on the rugby field and as a wide ranging author, journalist and commentator. We talk to Peter about his family values that were implanted as part of a big family growing up in Peats Ridge New South Wales.

Neil Young grew up in England but having come under the spell of life in the Byron Bay region he became a late blossomer on the soccer field and most importantly as a father. Neil has some great stories, some funny and some poignant, about his experiences on and off the field.

Peter FitzSimons

Peter FitzSimons had written over twenty books before he turned his attention to a memoir on his own life growing up in a close family on the outskirts of Sydney. In his book A Simpler Time dedicated to his late great friend Matt Laffan and his late parents Peter and Helen, Peter tells stories about his childhood and the range of characters that he encountered. In talking to us on the program he tells us why it always seemed to be sunny in that simpler time.

This is a very personal interview with a special focus on Peter’s father and some insights from his mother Helen. We hear about Peter’s initiation as a FitzSimons man. We hear that when Peter ran out to play his first Test match with the Wallabies his father was watching from the grandstand.

Peter inherited his great story telling from an Irish past. These stories are full of love and inspiration with the importance of family as a central theme. Listening to Peter will undoubtedly make listeners think of their own personal stories. The time goes all too quickly.

Neil Young

Our next guest, Neil Young, is an actor, writer, director and co-author of a new book on fatherhood One Got Past the Keeper. The book follows the story of a group of men who got together to play in a local six-a-side soccer competition on the North Coast of NSW. There was a first season to get themselves fit and in some cases learn the rudiments of the game.

This group of men with different ages and different backgrounds fronted up for a second season of sport and mateship but found there were big changes going on. Over the second season all but one of the players found themselves in a state of pending fatherhood.

Neil invited each of the Dads to tell their stories, not as experts at either childbirth or football, but to give an honest, often hilarious, account of what really went on as they became fathers and the team changed its name from the Rusty Trombones FC, to the Fertile FC, and later the Trombones FC.

And for those who would like to hear a Dads on the Air exclusive, Neil Young sings us a lullaby. Make sure you tune in.

Song selections by our guests:

Peter FitzSimons: Tangled Up in Blue by Bob Dylan from his Blood on the Tracks album

Neil Young: Kooks by David Bowie from the album Hunky Dory. David Bowie dedicated the song to his son Zowie

Listen Now (MP3)

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