The throng spilled wearily out of Adams Park in a seething mass of verbal agitation, resignation and despair. A paroxysm which spits from a thousand lips upon the exit signs.
A cathexis of endless sanctuary waiting like a cocoon. A triumph of hope over experience that sees them return like ants just as they hope that such sanctuary can be found.
There was a mirage of a football match here today, ostensibly a professional one. Through these eyes however it appeared more like a Shakespearean comedy where 28 quite awful footballers had collected in one place to grin at the dead as they picked off their scabs. There is no sense here.
The sense of cloying apathy hung in the air pre-match, an underwhelming atmosphere in the company of men which soon drifted in the wind as the referee`s first whistle shrilled.
A wrought opening capsized in less than four minutes as Dave Winfield left his station with a determined lurch forwards. The ball sailed over his head and onto the welcoming instep of Tom Craddock. His lay-off was given a violent blast by James Constable and it exploded into the net past Nikki Bull.
It was 45 minutes of fragments and the mistakes became virulent. Constable was hoisted by his own petard as the linesman waved his flag.
Ryan Clarke, the visiting goalkeeper, was called upon to block Joel Grant after he`d fumbled Charles Dunne`s bedazzling long ranger. That came on the cusp of half-time when many of the witnesses were already considering an alternative life as a temulant.
The words had hardly dribbled off the manager`s chin when an unsophisticated long ball arched its way through the now moist Bucks air, over the head of a statuesque Winfield and into the path of Craddock. He allowed it to bounce once before unleashing a shot which erupted past Bull and into the net.
Less than sixty seconds after the restart and the hosts had conceded a second goal. This Godforsaken defensive ineptitude shows no sign of abating. This isn`t the time for sackcloth and ashes but surely there must be more than this?
The atmosphere briefly threatened to turn dark and demonic before Constable fell foul of the law as he shoved Winfield to the sodden turf inside the penalty area. Joel Grant slipped it in from the spot and there was once again hope in the raptures.
The sleeping mouths now stalked the ground as the Oxbridge Blues mauled their opponents in search of parity. There was no finesse, a chronic lack of guile and an overwhelming sense of futility.
This was not lucid football and for ten minutes or so there was a feeling of being continually swept around in a whirlwind. Those stuck in this vortex soon came crashing back to the absurd reality of this philia we all suffer from.
From a routine free-kick Bull treated the ball like the proverbial bar of soap and in the resulting bewilderment; Johnny Mullins stooped to send a header into the net.
This isn`t the time to be phlegmatic; this is the time for Basement Jaxx. Nikki, Where`s your head at?
From this point on the game melted away into the rain which brought with it hopelessness that neither the Romans nor Dante dared contemplate. If we are not careful we shall fiddle away our Football League status. The stones in our pockets will end with us writing our own script. Someone needs to stop this downward spiral.
Man of the Match: Bill Turnbull