This week we will mostly be concerning ourselves with farewells and some damn fine rugby. But also some more RFU idiocy. Plus ça change...
Leave aside politics. Pay no heed to laws and law interpretations. Cast no thought to promotion or regulations or how to fit six teams into five. Just look back inside the 700 sq.m of grass in 12 different world cities this past weekend and enjoy what unfolds.
There were 12 top flight rugby matches this past weekend, including Europe's finals and play-offs, and the seven Super Rugby matches. In total, there were 67 tries - that's an average of five and a half tries a game - and an uncountable number of other moments of magic that could have led to more were it not for well-organised defence.
Yellow cards were scant, as were streams of penalties for negative play or faceless kicking contests. It could be that internationals are coming up and players are up to impress just that tiny bit more, or just perhaps that teams are hitting their straps at the business end of the season after all their hard work, but either way, the rugby on display all over the world this weekend was of the highest quality, with big attendances and many teams under immense pressures of victory. If you can peer through the smoke around it, rugby as a pure sport is in terrific shape.
Unfortunately, that smoke has become a little thicker and more cloying this week. London Welsh are furious that they cannot get promotion to the Aviva Premiership on the grounds of their apparent lack of primacy of tenure, a fury that manifested itself on the pitch last week against Cornish Pirates as well as off it.
The Exiles are to appeal the ruling, claiming a double standard applies to their arrangement with the Kassam Stadium in Oxford, given that it is said to be the same arrangement Wasps have with Wycombe, not to mention the agreements enabling Saracens, Sale and London Irish to use soccer stadia.
"Given the fact that we have a legally-binding agreement to use a top-notch stadium and that other clubs appear to be allowed to groundshare with other Football Association clubs, to my mind I would think it highly inequitable, unreasonable and unfair if we are told that we can't go up," said Exiles' Chairman Bleddyn Phillips.
The Pirates' hierarchy emerged as one of the loudest voices behind the Exiles' push (despite the fact Pirates could still scupper their chances on Wednesday night), with long-term backer Dicky Evans insisting the RFU was being unrealistic in what it wanted lower clubs to achieve. The Pirates have also been embroiled in conflict with the RFU over Premiership entry criteria, complicated by a setback in their search for a new local home.
"They've got to change the rules. Primacy of tenure has got to go. You've got to allow clubs like ourselves or London Welsh to play for two or three years at their own ground while they get a stadium together. It should be the same for Wasps and everybody else. At the moment it's not a level playing field.
"They're saying they have to protect clubs who have invested a lot of money. Well, I've invested £10m in this club in the last 20 years. I just can't believe you can allow a situation to develop where you ringfence something that is untenable...I've produced a rugby team but I can't produce a stadium as well. You can't do it all."
The RFU's silence since their verdict on London Welsh's application has been predictably deafening, hardly surprising when you consider the abject lack of tact present in delivering the negative verdict mere hours before the team took to the field for the first leg of the play-off final.
The groundswell of public support lies with the Exiles. Three QCs have offered free services to the club, the matter has been brought before Parliament, and the appeal, which must be lodged before next Wednesday, could drag on and on - something which will affect both the Welsh and Newcastle's recruitment and preparations for the new season.
All of which could have been avoided by some sensible deadline scheduling and thinking by the RFU. Oh wait.... hahahahahahaha....
Gloucester was saddened on Monday by the sad news of the passing of Rugby Operations Manager John Brain.
Brain, a Gloucester man through and through who also coached at Bristol and Worcester before returning to Gloucester where he made over 300 appearances as a player, died in the early hours of Sunday morning.
A club statement said: "Everyone at Gloucester is deeply saddened by the news today that rugby operations manager John Brain passed away on Sunday morning.
"John was a true Gloucester Rugby stalwart, representing his home town club with distinction for the vast majority of his rugby playing career. His passing has come as desperately sad news for everyone at the club and our thoughts are with his wife and daughters at this difficult time."
Shane Williams has finally completed the transition from modern great to past rugby legend, signing off in dream fashion with the title-winning try for the Ospreys on Sunday.
Everyone, everywhere in the world will miss the step, the acceleration and the enthusiasm Williams brought to the game. He may end up being the last of the great small and nippy wingers, but who'd bet against his being the best of them all?
Loose Pass compiled by Richard Anderson