Dyer-rhea – The Malapropisms of Jack Dyer

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Back in the 1980s, there was a commentator who was a famous Australian Rules football commentator who had been a legendary player in the 1930s and 1940’s. His name was Jack Dyer and he was forever getting things wrong. It became something of a routine for people in Melbourne to listen to his radio commentary alongside Ian Major-the duo was known as “The Captain and the Major” because Dyer had been captain of Richmond.

He had been known as Captain Blood for his ferocious approach during his playing career.no one had inspired more fear. Now no one made people laugh harder. He was a genial man and he appreciated the fact that the gift of articulate communication was not to be his domain. Everyone loved him for it though and they appreciated he had once been a champion player.

A malapropism is when you mix up the words in your sentence in order to produce something that you didn’t intend. Some of his more famous malapropisms included these gems:

“All they want to do is sit around and smoke marinara”

“I won’t say anything in case I say something.”

Bartlett’s older than he’s ever been before.”

“Johnston missed one from the 10-yard square – it was impossible to miss that.”

“The only way to tackle Justin Madden. I don’t know.”

“That’s the beauty of being small – your hands are close to your feet.”

“Bamblett made a great debut last week, and an even better one today.”

“The ball goes to Marceesie … Marcheson … McKann, er …” before co-commentator Ian Major interjected: “Actually, Jack I don’t think Marchesani was in that passage of play.”

“Mark Lee’s long arms reaching up like giant testicles.”

“It’s as dark out there as the Black Hole of Dakota.”

“The goalposts are moving so fast I can’t keep up with the play.”

And on World Of Sport, Dyer declared that Fitzroy had “copulated to the opposition”.

He also famously asserted that Peter Bosustow was a “good ordinary player”.Bosustow in his first and second years in the Victorian Football League won 2 Premierships, or League Championships as they would be known in other sports and also won ‘’Mark of the Year’’ and ‘Goal of the Year’’ in 1981.

He was a great man-someone who played only because he loved it and he loved the game to the day he died. Perhaps his greatest legacy was in 1990 when he led and won the fight to save his beloved Richmond Tigers from being shut down due to financial reasons. By now an old man, there was no doubt that this Tiger still had plenty of fight left in him. That, of course, was never in question.

Jack Dyer in 1944. He was exempt from being drafted into the military because he was a policeman.

Nick Hanlon

I'm an Aussie interested in topical issues.

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