Unhappy Hawks under new ownership
Unhappy Hawks under new ownership

A miffed Buddy Franklin didn’t stay retired from Twitter for long.

He retired last Thursday and by Friday the Hawthorn excitement machine was back tweeting. Well as they say, a day is a long time in football.

“Due to popular demand the big boy is back # hadto,” he tweeted.

Seems Franklin had been accused by Andrew Bogut of “buying followers” to bolster his profile.

Forget those CUB ads where I seem techno-challenged, some days I’m a certifiable walking rarely talking nerd. So I went online.

Sure enough, following has become a leading growth industry — $500 buys 30,000 followers, but none with the slightest interest in Dennis Cometti.

The page I looked at cautioned against buying followers but failed to answer one question. Who thought this up?

I’m inclined to think a group of deranged Islamic extremists who, under constant bomb attack in the Afghan mountains, planned their revenge on the West.

If I’m right, a group of toothless, dusty, hearing-impaired thugs could be laughing (all the way to the bank) at Buddy.

Still, understandably his comeback was the third item in Melbourne television’s 6pm news bulletin that night.

Then within hours things took another turn.

Forget Buddy, even Joseph Kony breathed easier, suddenly Chris Judd found a tsunami of sewage bearing down. The twitter sphere went crazy.

The Carlton captain strong-armed North Melbourne’s Leigh Adams, a totally blameless opponent but one who had the misfortune to have the footy when an umpire’s agonisingly slow whistle spelt trouble for both.

After what seemed an eternity Judd took matters into his own hands, literally, and the rest as they say is “hysterical”.

In all my years of watching footy I’d never seen anything quite like it.

If nothing else, Judd is like a jukebox when it comes to variety.

My recollection is that as a commentary team we were decidedly underwhelmed.

Although it’s fair to say Sharrod Wellingham’s recent collision with Kane Simpson and Jack Ziebell’s hit on Aaron Joseph both received far less attention.

Remember Ziebell?

He copped a four-week suspension on Tuesday too. Now the North youngster has trivia question written all over him.

Judd is an interesting target. He galvanises his critics.

Not only are they angry with Judd, they’re angry with anyone who doesn’t share their anger.

I think the former Eagle has been harshly treated. His act may have been provocative, but nevertheless trivial. My voice is muted because I’m seen as a friend, but so be it.

This has nothing to do with friendship. I think it is more about the AFL (for one of the very few times) bowing to outside elements.

As it happened, I was running a “Google alert” on Friday night (more on that shortly). And I noticed a blog by an online footy reporter I always enjoy reading.

Bad move!

Among other things he suggested I had a “silly schoolgirl crush” on Judd. Bit rough and not right.

Judd’s a handy player but, frankly, he’s no Clive Waterhouse. Now that was a crush!

Anyway this blogger certainly got his followers into a feeding frenzy.
I don’t get Twitter! But I know it’s powerful. I’ve just seen it get Judd a couple of extra weeks.

During a half-time interview on Sunday, I asked Buddy Franklin the attraction.

He told me “the phone just doesn’t do it for me”, meaning actual talking, I guess.

All of which takes me back to my “Google alert”.

Dennis Cometti is on Twitter. But I’m pretty sure he or she is a fake. I mentioned this to The Beast recently in the hope of a little family muscle but was told to leave things alone, “whoever it is, they’re more entertaining than you”.

I’m told these fakes take months to shut down, so for now I’m monitoring “me” and ringing all likely offended parties to explain and apologise for “my” tweets.

In the meantime, I’m tempted to spend a couple of grand to bolster his or her rather paltry numbers.

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