Published Wednesday, 13 July 2011
Well, I decided to dispense with all three on Saturday as I prepared for a busman's holiday on my day off.
I am so not used to being free at weekends and I am not the sort to sit in the house on what is traditionally the busiest sports day of the week.
First port of call was Shaw's Bridge to watch an hour or so of the Senior League cricket match between Instonians and Bangor.
Little did I know Glentoran manager Scott Young was going to be there, but more of that later.
The game itself was shaping up to be a one-sided affair as Inst piled on the runs against a side that was missing seven regulars.
So my attention switched to the small but loyal band of fans who had turned up - all three of them and I knew them all personally.
Mr Instonians Hockey Club Haydn Taylor was the first to catch my eye, then there was my old Methody school mate Peter Wood, but the third member of the gang of three?
Frankly I was surprised he was still alive. Des Simon, the former Ulster Branch Hockey Secretary, who, though he didn't know it at the time, had given me my first break in sports journalism many years ago.
He had agreed to let me produce a match programme for the Irish Cup Final way back in 1981.
Des is a remarkable not so young man and still has his wits about him at the ripe old age of 94.
He was a proud man when he reached four score years and ten and even more so when he received a card signed by the Ireland cricket team in a lovely gesture set up by Kyle McCallan.
Eyes left from behind the scoreboard and my attention is caught by a sea of green shirts - none other than Scotty Young and the Glentoran squad who use the facilities at Shaw's Bridge to train.
Club vice-chairman Aubry Ralph was there as well but I didn't get a chance to have a word - he spent the whole time on his mobile, I assume sorting out the travel arrangements for the trip to the Ukraine for the away leg of second round Europa League qualifying.
The gaffer was waxing lyrical about Thursday night's opponents at the Oval and, take it from me, if the Glens get anything out of this tie they will be doing well.
Time to go - next stop Casement Park for the All Ireland football qualifier between Antrim and Carlow.
I took the precaution of asking my mate Ciaran from Springsteen's on the Lisburn Road could I park in his parents' driveway near the ground as it's a nightmare finding a space on match day.
Needn't have worried as my thoughts turned to doing another story on the falling attendances at this year's Championship. I could easily have got a space near the ground and I was amazed how few people there were in the vicinity.
Then another story came to mind as Saffron star Paddy Cunningham walked past me in the corridor after just stepping out of his car. With just 20 minutes to go before throw-in! What's he playing at, I thought.
Oops, John. You have arrived a little bit early. Throw-in has been moved back from 2pm to 3pm. Slap wrists! I am supposed to know these things.
I sit on the concrete terracing rather than in the press box. I am on a day off, after all. Poor crowd all the same. 1800 hardy souls but they make plenty of noise.
Antrim turn round six points to five up after a poor first 35 minutes. Have to go but not before watching a proud group of young men, namely the St. Enda's U14s who are presented to the crowd at the break on their return from winning the Division Two All Ireland Feile last weekend.
Seaview beckons and a chance to see how things are going as the Hatchet men prepare for the visit of Aaron Hughes and co later this week.
Rather well, it has to be said. The place is looking superb. New stands in place. Decent crowd for a low key friendly between Baxter's boys and Bangor. Must be 400 plus.
I spot an elderly lady in the stand, or should I say one of the stands. It's none other than octogenarian Madge Hunter still watching her beloved Crues after retiring following a half century of silver service as the club's tea-lady.
A perfect 'day off' and perfect symmetry as well. It started with meeting Des who's 94 not out and ended with an encounter with Madge, who's still going strong at 86. Time to go home. Feeling young again.