I Love The World Cup
I love the World Cup. It is one of my favorite sporting experiences. Here's why. Even more than the Olympics, I feel a sense of shared global experience - and I love it.
American Opportunity. I love feeling a part of a shared global experience. But even if the US had made it, we really don't know what it feels like to spend a month solid, glued to the tv with your extended family and neighbors, with an intense emotional attachment the level of which only 2 NFL teams get to experience once a year. We can actually watch and enjoy the game without getting sick to our stomachs.
Passion! I love watching competitions of all kinds but the crowds at the World Cup are insane. I really love underdogs, upsets and undulating crowds. There is always pure, unadulterated passion. Part of the global experience is watching the footage of the home country after an unexpected victory or a hard earned tie (Iceland beat Argentina in a 1-1 tie!) and it pleases me to no end.
Telemundo. I like to listen on Telemundo and pretend I speak Spanish. It makes me feel better about my mono-linguistic self. Between the World Cup and telenovellas, I may one day put together a full sentence in Spanish. Speaking of drama...futbol players make LeBron James look like a stoic. Enough said.
My Melting Pot Cheering Method I can't make up my mind. I am rooting for Iceland. And Mexico. Oh and Costa Rica! And OH WAIT! Nigeria! Those KITS!!!! And sometimes Switzerland! I have to take it game by game and some games it isn't about the team or the country at all.
As an American, I know people who have connections to nearly every country playing. The US isn't playing, but we kind of all are. Our beautiful, amazing, nation of immigrants means that when I don't have a team to root for, I mentally scroll through the people I know or my family tree or find a restaurant that serves Tunisian food and go watch there.
Here's how it works, using the matches on June 19.
- Columbia Vs.Japan: Tough one. I am neither Columbian nor Japanese. No one in my extended family is Columbian or Japanese. BUT, my best friend in elementary school is Columbian and her mother was a second mother to me and I adore her sister and so. Columbia it is.
- Poland Vs. Senegal: I will have to go with Senegal because of this celebration in the streets of Moscow.
- Russia Vs. Egypt: Despite my obsession with Egypt for all of 4th grade, I gotta go with Russia because we have Framily from Siberia and they invited us to Russian New Year and it was very very good.
Okay, so I know it isn't scientific or based in any actual analysis of the sport. What can I say, sometimes I operate on instinct.
When we get to 16, I will probably have a clearer preference. By 8, I will have a favorite. Stay tuned for this super important announcement.