“Everything I know about morality and the obligations of men, I owe it to football.”*
This post will be an odd departure for all you Cardinals fans out there, but let’s talk the World Cup. In this family every four years normal work and life comes to a shuddering halt so that we can watch soccer. This is not to say that we actually follow the sport any other time because we don’t. It’s hard to explain. Suffice it to say that devotedly watching the World Cup has turned into a family tradition — and you know how big I am on those.
And let me be honest. While even I can recognize and appreciate a great goal,
I mostly watch to vilify the teams I don’t like and mock them for their histrionic rolling around on the ground in order to get a free kick. And oh my, the Netherland’s thrashing of Spain (5-1) yesterday was eminently satisfying, although I did feel sorry for the good-looking Spanish goalie.
We dutifully root for the U.S. and English teams even though we know they won’t win. England always seems to lose on penalty kicks — sigh. Then we choose our favorite team among the real contenders — whoever takes our fancy and seems to play the most sporting and skillful game — and go from there.
I should also add that I tend to comment on which players are good looking, which have the oddest tattoos and hair, and which are just plain ugly (having another female around to help with this commentary would be fun), but we all love to notice their names. Take the German Per Mertsacker, affectionately known as Meetsacker, or Bastian Schweinsteiger — does that mean pigsticker? It’s certainly quite a mouthful for the Spanish commentators (btw. one should always watch on Univision — the Spanish commentary is wonderful even to those of us who don’t know Spanish — and they show all the games commercial free). So you see, the possibilities are endless because “The thing about football – the important thing about football – is that it is not just about football.” (Terry Pratchett).
Give it a try — the England vs. Portugal game is on tonight at 6 eastern time. Poor England is expected to lose (“sniff”), but you never know…