Friday, June 4, 2010

World Cup Facts and Questions

So: you’re a World Cup novice. That’s perfect. I am too. This will educate you as to the most entertaining World Cup-related things found out….recently.

Something I wonder every time there’s an international soccer match: why, exactly, does each team lead out a bunch of small players and clutch firmly to their hands as if walking them to school? The answer, as far as I can tell: no one knows, and I think it’s weird.

You may have heard that Didier Drogba, owner of great hair, ender of Ivorian civil wars and all-around badass/real-life Terminator just dislocated his elbow in a nasty tackle from some Japanese player. Eew. Now, you’re (probably) American—so you have to ask yourself, how the hell did that happen? This is an excellent question. Probably the first answer is that the Ivory Coast is coached by Sven-Goran Eriksson, who is widely regarded as a terrible coach—in a profession that includes noted insanity-ward dwellers as Diego Maradona (threatened to go streaking if Argentina won the Cup) and Raymond Domenech (oddly crazy for a French dude). But this can’t be all of it, right? Nay. American terrible coaches are perfectly capable of avoiding injuries in meaningless preseason games—we’ve got it down to a science. So the best answer is there is none: no one knows.


We’re a visual culture. This is good.

Now you can drop some knowledge: just say Johan Cruyff, amazing motherfucker…and then run and hide when further knowledge is required. This is enough to fake it (and is just neat, no?)

Who You Should Root For

Excellent question. If you’re American (probably), then U-S-A, U-S-A! But you can presume we’ll be out…oh, by the round of 16 or so. What’s the backup?

This is an excellent question. I can recommend three teams: North Korea (because “Kim Jong-Il has decreed that only edited highlights will be broadcast at home, ensuring that the North Korean side appears dominant irrespective of the score.” And that’s why Kim Jong-Il is awesome.), Spain and the Netherlands (because in soccer’s oligarchic structure, these two teams are both very good and yet have never won and you like slightly underdoggish teams don’t you?) Alternatively, root for a team that you did a term abroad in or something. That’s the preferred Stuff White People Like formulation.

Facts That Are Excellent

Argentina demanded that they receive in the team hotel: “ten hot dishes a day as well as 14 different salads with every meal…three different pasta sauces with each meal and at least three puddings…a braai once in three days…ice cream available all day…a toilet meeting Maradona’s standards (which is the E-Bidet, featuring a heated seat, a warm air blow-dryer, and front and rear bidet wands.” That, my friends, is WIN.

North Korea, similarly, has demanded: “Korean rice with all meals, and the exclusive use of an entire floor of the Protea hotel in Midrand.” Again, why you have to root for North Korea.

Best scandal of the tournament? Well, you’d have to pick between the Jon Terry-Wayne Bridges love triangle story…or the French prostitution one. (the French one involves Franck Ribery, otherwise known as the ugliest human being in the world. Google him…I’m not sullying this blog with his face.)

The Bottom Line:


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