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Message: So, whatís a sport-starved Aussie doing in a crowded Paris bar/cafe after two nil-all draws added up to four hours without a goal: two games that were decided by changing to a different game. [I missed Germany and Spain ~ someone told me there were three goals but I donít believe it]
Soccer is not a good reason to stay alive: A grade dribbling; C grade acting when thereís the smell of a penalty, and D grade scoreboard activity.
The game isnít enough so Iím taking notes.
The night was a success if you listen to and feel pulsating Paris in and outside the cafť. This Aussie was a failure. [Maybe this woman I married is really right this time ~ we should be with the opera hooligans again]
Both sports have ensemble moments and no meaning I say to myself, but not out loud.
We are surrounded by soccer fans pumped up on fear over all these names ending in vowels. Itís the Wogs vee the Wogs, a Mediterranean cocktail of too much expectation, too much passion and too much nothing. Buffon is all intensity, and its only the national anthem. [I saw Jezza sing the anthem once and no one kicked the ball to him all afternoon]
The whistle sounds. The Spanish players seem to know what is on the minds of their robotic team mates, a sort of rhythmic group think without goals.
Oops, too soon, 14 minutes in, and out of nowhere one of those I-was-there, boxing-clever moments. If you woke me at 4am to watch a replay of a goal like that, Iíd be half a chance. Feet like card-sharps have hands. Then the soaring adrenalin of a wonderful run. Thatís 27 minutes later. What do you do in the meantime? Two moments of laser-sharp precision, both in the same half. I was close to becoming a convert, then an obligation to reality: Iíve waited three games for this.
The entertainment is not in the game but in the watching of those watching. The Spanish wogs have gone non-stop-nuts.
Every time Balotelli goes near the ball someone spills a drink. The women hope he kicks a goal so he takes his clothes off. [Thatís the Spanish women, I donít know about the Italians] Like Ronaldo heís self-infatuated; unlike Ronaldo, the camera hates him. One gets the face one deserves in life, but at 22?
Itís halftime. I need a new thesaurus for the buzz. Being kissed by strangers. Especially that last one.
I need a drink. I get one for Mary too, then drink both.
Itís the second half. Thank God, the singing will stop. But itís 2-nil, why do they need a second half?
The Italian Wogs turn up again. The Spanish Wogs confiscate the football, so the Italians are looking on like the rest of us. Balotelli continues to play like he bet everything on presence. Itís getting intolerable. Heís turning sour. He is now carrying his head around. I think heís going through a clenched-teeth breakdown.
The game has reached and past its zenith then suddenly Spainís Torres, the equivalent of Carltonís world famous bench-warmer Ted Hopkins, comes on as a reserve and gets a goal, then assists in another. Electricity, four goals on the scoreboard.
Electricity? Thatís a goal a quarter back home. Make that gaslight. ĎFour goals senor Australee, Canít get more than thatí. There are no Aussies here, so I nod.
My assessment: The goals are in the play, not in the goals. I saw boring half hours. The Beautiful Game is an irony or a castle in the air or a fairy tale. They are the only choices. Not as good as the Sweet Science, not a patch on the Sport of Kings. Even rugby is out of the cellar. Two late goals made the hiding border-line offensive, an unnecessary cruelty. This game has nothing on filling out a tax form or the weather report. Itís like reading Mr Mogadon except he has the magic of anaesthetising an entire forum in two lines. I saw Espagnas screaming like ten thousand fiends. Thatís in Paris. Thank God I wasnít in Madrid.
Message: 3 mins of action and 90 mins of boring passes and stoppages. The only way to watch soccer is the weekly highlights. Like a movie where all the highlights are revealed in the preview and the rest of the film is lame.
Author: fatjack Timestamp:- 6/7/2012 9:33:16 PM Subject: Re: The Beautiful Game
Message: Mapik, Correct me if I'm wrong but I seem to remember that at the time it was the last game of the season at the ground and the Grandstand was being replaced in the off season,there was quite a bit of souveniring going on and a blind eye was was turned by the Parramatta offialdom at the time??? Cheers FJ
Author: MAPIK Timestamp:- 6/7/2012 2:03:20 PM Subject: Re: The Beautiful Game
Message: Lister, I don't know if rioting and wrecking your own stuff is necessarily a cultural thing. When the Parramatta Eels won their first GF in 81 the fans rioted and burnt down the grandstand at their home ground Cumberland Oval.
I actually enjoy the game from time to time but it never enthralls me like an AFL game does. Even at local level in the NFL here in Melbourne
The fanaticism of fans I find a bit hard to cop sometimes.
The tv cameras in Melbourne were at the Spanish Club and Lygon Street. There must have been a few boat owners in Carlton. Orange flares going off everywhere.
What is it with European soccer fans and flares?
Never seen one go off at AFL or the cricket, but organise a soccer game where nationalities come into play, be it Italian, Serb, Macedonian, Greek etc., and the boat owners turn up with flares. They've even been known to riot and wreck their own stuff.
That's a cultural difference that we can do without.
Leave it in the homeland, just give us your food and drink.
Message: No doubt you're knockers will baulk at the "RED STAR" rating L.C, perhaps one or two will take a dive or feign being held back as excuse's not to play.
If you're not the sickly looking, pale skinned lad from north of England like, or weren't born into the drab existence of a high rise Preston North end council estate, and you're fav pastime isn't nicking stuff, or joyriding, or you don't belong parents, who can nearly always be found supping on pints of bitter in the boozer across from home rather than at home, or say if you're not into piercing both you're ears with gold hoops, or u no like to wear the Caesar haircut, then I'm afraid football just isn't going appeal as much I'm afraid.
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