Basically, I didn't see my Dad for a long time (who is a red) so I grew up in a single parent family. So essentially, the decision was left up to myself. I had brief period as a red with a kit/wallpaper but I came back before the Coventry survival game, and my first kit was actually a Man Utd kit, more on that in a minute......
So the only boy in the family on my Mum's side is my cousin. I looked up to him and he had a Man Utd kit so I asked my Mum for one when I was 4. She was mortified as walking around Liverpool in that wasn't a great idea, but I was 4. Like my cousin, I found Blue again very quickly. By 6 I had the old Yellow 'Danka' Everton GK shirt with 'Southall' on the back who I adored.
The love affair with Everton all properly started one day in 1995 my Mum asked who I supported and as I always liked the colour Blue at school + I'd just watched us beat Spurs in the FA Cup SF and I loved Amokachi, I picked Everton. Aged 6. My Grandad on my Mum's side who used to go Everton one week and Liverpool the next and actually went the 65 and 66 Cup Finals to see both told me I'd have a tough life from then on. Unless Everton signed David Ginola. (Quarrrrrrrrrrr Tosh, what a player he is!)
My Mum didn't have a lot of money then though so I couldn't go games and so on my Dad's side of the family a few started taking me to Liverpool games. My first actual football match was Liverpool vs Aston Villa 95/96 where McMannanaman scored and Fowler got 2. Naturally for balance, they took me again only the Derby at Goodison where I insisted at sat in the Everton end with my Nana on my Dad's side who is also a red.
We drew 1-1. 1996 torrential rain. Kanchleskis early scrappy goal and then Fowler equalised with about 5 minutes left. That tells you a lot about my derby luck in the future especially at Anfield (x15 vists, took the lead x4, drew 4 lost 11). Anyway, I was characteristically not shy and quite loud and aged only 7 with how bad Everton where at the time and how good Liverpool where, some of the Blue round me in the Top Balcony told my Nan ' With Claus Thomsen about, we need more like him love'.
When I was 8 my Nana on my Dad's side told me she'd pay to decorate my room and as she had been taking me a few Liverpool games asked if I wanted Liverpool wallpaper/a kit for my birthday. So I said yes. Again, this didn't last long because by the time Everton played Coventry end of 97/98 I had this huge fear of Everton going down. That's when I knew who I truly supported.
In time the Liverpool wallpaper came down and then my Mum started going out with someone who could get us complimentary tickets home/away so we started going to loads of games. The first one was a six-pointer away to Blackburn 98/99 where we went behind 1-0 then won 2-1 when Bakayoko scored 2. We went down via lift arranged for us from 3 people we didnt know from Asda Car Park and one of the women from Kirkby needed to blag someone else's/french persons ticket and her attempts at it where hilarious despite my Mums help (My Mum speaks French).
In 99/00 when we had a QF at home to Villa my Mum promised me if we won she'd take me to Wembley for the SF. So I cried when we lost. After that, my Mum went out with somebody new so I started occasionally going with the older cousin who had the Man Utd kit when he was younger.
Anyway all that solidified who my team was. Despite all the times me and my Mum went to Goodison and saw Joey Beuchamp score the winner for Oxford Utd in the Coca Cola Cup and beat us 1-0, despite going with my Mum to Anfield to see Dacourt score after 40 seconds yet Fowler sniff the white line (What's he doing Mum?) and despite having my first half season ticket in 01/02 watching Ipswich, Charlton and others beat us 3-0 at home, marvelling at the 'talents' of Tobias Linderoth, Idan Tal and Alessandro Pistone and seeing Walter Smith get sacked, I renewed my season ticket every year until about 2011 or 2012.
There was a time where Everton was literally my life. I got paid to write about them and other sometimes I wrote about them for free on Toffeeweb, WSAG and NSNO. I went literally every game home,away and abroad for 6 years.
As you get older you learn there's more to life, but Everton are still an important aspect of my own life and its made me so many friends. My boss in the youth club I work in now asked me did I support Everton and when I said yes he said 'your going to fit right in'.
Whenever I tell anyone at Celtic I support Everton they all say 'Good, Liverpool are Huns'. Hahahahah
So a decision I made all by myself aged 6 could mean lifelong misery but I'm glad I chose Everton.