Wednesday, June 23, 2010

I've Got a Fever and the Only Thing That Will Cure it is More Vuvuzela

Just over half a year ago I wrote a blog post that went something like this: soccer fans... what a bunch of headcases. And to those headcases I would like to apologize. I get it now. Well, kind of.

The World Cup has begun, and with it are masses of people who have suddenly started caring about the sport (including me). Much like how everyone becomes a gymnastics expert every four years during the Olympics, the World Cup brings out a dormant spirit in people that impels them refer to "soccer" as "football," "games" as "matches," and a weak pass as a "pathetic display... an utter disgrace to his country." Statistics are discussed. Past glories are recounted. National pride is displayed. Sleep patterns are disturbed due to a 9 hour time difference.

Which is why I found myself at a pub this morning at 7AM to watch the U.S./Algeria game (don't worry boss, I was just drinking coffee). Unlike most of the people there, I have but a shaky understanding of the game's rules. I know that, without the aid of your hands, you are to move a ball about a field and kick it into a net. I also know that when this happens, the people watching the game must celebrate as if every loved one they ever lost has come back to life riding glowing white unicorns while it rains gold. Unless, of course, you are rooting for the opposing team. In that case you place both hands on the top of your head and make a noise like a dying whale. You then repeat this ritual for 90 minutes. It's fun when you are in a crowd, but a little awkward when you are in your apartment at 4AM.

In a couple of weeks though, once one nation comes out on top and the sound of vuvuzelas stop haunting our dreams (or in the case of my friend who went to South Africa to see the games, if the vuvuzelas haven't made it impossible for him to hear anything from here on out), we will go back to forgetting all about soccer until 2014.
posted by jw