Pinning celebrity speaker, media commentator and self-styled supercoach Kevin Sheedy down to breakfast, brunch, lunch, or anything like it, has proved impossible. With a new footy team and new season only days away, he is just too, too busy.
Typically, a working breakfast has already been taken with sponsors, sports officials and other suits in the city. Lunch will be grabbed on the run in the Qantas club lounge. Dinner, with long-suffering wife Geraldine he'll deal with later.
But, suddenly, mid-morning, here he is, cornered briefly on the balcony of Breakfast Point Country Club spruiking, setting out his vision for the Greater Western Sydney Giants.
Pressed, he has accepted an almond biscuit and cappuccino. But the biscuit goes un-nibbled. The coffee cools. And the saucer is commandeered to illustrate the inter-galactic significance of the arrival of the new AFL franchise.
''Imagine this spaceship. This flying saucer,'' he says holding it in hovering, outstretched hand. ''It's coming into land. The first, new, fully professional sporting club in any football code is coming into land.
''And where of all the towns, the cities, in Australia, is it landing? Western Sydney!'' Sheedy the showman exclaims with the enthusiasm of a true believer. ''That's amazing. That's history in the making.''
It is not difficult, especially west of Breakfast Point, a bright, white, icing-cake castle overlooking the Parramatta River, to find earthlings who think he is dreaming, or just plain daft. Officials of the rival codes - league, union and soccer - insist that the new alien, sporting life-form cannot prosper; that Captain Sheeds and his saucer are about to make a crash landing in what is traditionally enemy territory for the AFL.
Bookmakers rate the Giants a 50-50 chance to lose every match in their first season, beginning tonight with pre-season NAB Cup games against Western Bulldogs and Collingwood, before the AFL opener with the Sydney Swans at ANZ Stadium next month.
If he is worried by the prospect, Sheedy is not showing it. Surveying his high-potential, low-experience squad, gathering in their orange and charcoal colours for a team photograph, he admits they may wait a while for their first win.
He prefers to think long-term, look at the big picture. ''I'm more interested in reaching the heart and soul of Australia than worrying about what's happening on the [playing] field,'' he insists, with a characteristic flourish and mischievous smile.
He dismisses suggestions impatient Giants fans will abandon a losing team, insisting they are not like the notoriously fickle Sydney supporters. ''Our fans will give us time. They'll grow with us.''
It sounds like the new club's cheesy mission statement, which begins: ''Being a Giant isn't about the size of your body, it's about the size of your heart and your ambition. It's about daring to dream big.''
Coach Sheedy may have his detractors, even his enemies. As Tim Watson began his biography, The Jigsaw Man, ''Who is Kevin Sheedy? Genius? Madman? Visionary? Eccentric? It depends on who you ask.''
But ask anyone, including the man himself, and none will question his ambition. His sense of adventure. His readiness, Star Trek-style, to boldly go where no AFL man has gone before. Western Sydney. His ability to dream big.
It began with a skinny kid growing up on the back streets of South Yarra and Prahran where Sheedy, whose parents are of Irish-Scottish background, dreamed first of being Don Bradman. He soon discovered his cricket was not good enough.
''Mum'd come out and shout, 'Kevin, your dinner's ready'. And I'd say, 'But I've just got in [batting]'. In fact, I was usually soon out. The only way I'd score a century is on a golf course.''
Bradman was replaced as role model by Aussie rules legend Ron Barassi, as Sheedy and his brother Patrick improvised footy matches with a ball made from rolled-up paper, which had to be kicked through the door of an outside toilet.
Though plumbing became his fall-back trade, football became his religion, as he progressed from the Try Boys society side, through Prahran VFA team to the Richmond Tigers, where he played 251 games over 12 years.
As experts from Watson to Wikipedia recall, the self-styled ''back-pocket plumber'' could be a ''niggly'' player, a theatre villain who antagonised opponents, ''pushed the boundaries to see how far he could go''. It proved to be far.
After a brief hiatus, he was appointed coach of the Essendon Bombers. Over 27 years, he won four premierships, broke the record for the most games combined as player/coach, and built a reputation as a tough, tenacious, imaginative leader.
On leaving Essendon in 2007, Sheedy took stock. He wrote his autobiography, Stand Your Ground, one of several books by a bloke who claims to have read only one, the Catholic catechism, as a kid. He wondered, at 60, whether his coaching days were over.
Barely two years later, after serving as an AFL ambassador during the code's 150th anniversary celebrations, he was offered a three-year contract for arguably the most challenging in sport: coach of the non-existent Giants. He consulted Geraldine and his four children, Renee, Chelsea, Sam and Jessica. ''I said, 'What do you think? You've got 24 hours to decide. I don't want to hear a lot of whingeing about how I haven't spent time with you'.''
A few weeks later, on January 2, 2010, he and his wife stepped off a Melbourne flight at Mascot. ''We had nothing. No home, no car.'' And, of course, no club. But to his task, he brought passion but, more, a kitbag of qualities, skills.
Stamina. ''The best advice I was ever given was to get up early. Get started while everyone else is in bed,'' says Sheedy, who keeps fit riding, swimming, working out, who relaxes by gardening and racing his half-share horse, Bel Esprit.
Sense of humour. ''You've got to laugh at yourself,'' says the author of a collection of corny jokes, What's So Funny?. ''It's a record of what we were laughing at in 2010.''
Such as rivals Collingwood. ''If footy clubs were musical acts, they'd be the Rolling Stones. Haven't done anything good for years, but can still fill the MCG.''
Sense of history. He is fascinated by the Parramatta River's part in the early growth of the convict colony. He hopes to create a club honouring Gundagai-born Tom Wills, who helped create Australian football.
And, most of all, he brings organisational know-how which he traces back to national service days, some of which were based at Casula. ''I love Sydney,'' he says. ''It's such an international city.''
Sheedy has spent hours, days, weeks in western Sydney, meeting people, visiting clubs and pubs, learning the lay of the land, working ''like a forward scout sent out to find a place to camp in the, umm, savage territory of rugby league''.
Today, his son and one daughter still live in Melbourne, but Sheedy, his wife and two daughters are happily settled in an apartment at Breakfast Point, which with less fashionable Blacktown has become a focus for Giants activity.
The club now boasts: 10 staff, including assistant coach Mark Williams; 50 players, among them 11 of the first 14 draft picks last year; and 12,190 foundation members and 4590 year 2012 members.
Though a recent newspaper survey found Sheedy was recognised more in the east than the west, he feels a natural affinity with his new people in the west, whom he describes as ''earthy, honest, hardworking, friendly''.
While the likeable, born-entertainer in Sheedy cannot wholly resist occasionally winding up rival players, clubs and codes - soccer's binomial ''0001010100'' rate of scoring bores him - he says he won't overwork the old ''us and them'' routine.
While he will fire up the suburbs versus Swans rivalry, there will be no heavy-handed westies versus easties class war. No AFL versus league, union, soccer turf war. No NSW versus Victoria origin war.
''I'm a patriot, not a state-riot,'' he announces, twiddling his flying saucer. ''If I had my way we'd fill in the Murray River,'' he jokes, figuratively removing the natural barrier that separates the two states.
Sheedy, who devotes 70 per cent of his time to coaching, will not be easily beaten, on or off the field. The critics, the neg-heads, are the very people ''who make me spring out of bed every day''.
And that's it. He must catch a plane. On his way out, he stops his car, opens the window, hands over two ham sandwiches from a pile provided by the club. ''Here, lunch,'' he says, driving away laughing.