BY DEBORAH COLLINS
When I was asked if I'd like to contribute an anecdote to this site I said, what, like the time I used the referee's toilet at Highbury? That'll do nicely, I was told. Now, when I think about it, there isn't very much to that story. But it sparks off a chain of reminiscences connecting Arsenal with toilets. And no, I don't mean our form since we moved to the Emirates - I'm a glass half full kind of person, which is probably why I have bladder issues.
In the very early years of this century, before online booking had really caught on, I used to take the morning off (or throw a sickie) to queue up at the old box office in Avenell Road to buy tickets for certain key fixtures, instead of risking the phone. These included the last home match of each season - a trick I learned in 1998 in just our second season of attending, when we only went to the matches my young son was confident we could win.
That year, I randomly bought tickets for the match against Everton, which turned out to be the first of three times I've seen the Premier League trophy lifted in the flesh. Adams! Would you believe it! That sums it all up!
So two or three years later, there I was in a queue of hundreds of people stretching up the hill, past the poky little club shop up some steps we used to have, and the way into the sports centre round by the Clock End where my son would attend Soccer School in his new home kit every July.
I must have asked someone to hold my place as I told one of the stewards marshalling the queue I was desperate for the loo. You can use the referee's toilet, she said, and I was escorted straight into the legendary marble halls, shuffling embarrassed past the other queuers, pushing out the front of my coat with my hands in my pockets in a vague attempt to appear pregnant.