Rollin' Like Sisyphus

Red And White And Green All Over

Posted in The Fail Pail by Huckleberry on June 17, 2014



So World Cup fever is in full effect, and strolling around the streets of Southern California, one can’t help but feel the patriotic energy in the air, people all over sporting their country’s colors and waving their country’s flag in bursts of emphatic and enthusiastic nationalism.
Nothing quite like the ole red, white and green, with that stupid Tijuana-toasted eagle falling down drunk on the Mexican flag. There’s really no sensation like feeling as though you’re an expatriate in your own hometown.
All the hassles and none of the benefits of renouncing one’s citizenship?
Sign me up!
So of course, with the “rising interest” and increased ratings, everyone in the chattering class is sneering that Americans are finally, finally getting into the very sophisticated and European sport of soccer football futbol because We Won. Naturally, the US National team has seen the benefit of this upsurge in interest, yes?
Despite the best efforts of four of my Facebook friends to cheer on Team USA, the answer is a resounding “fuck no.”
Seems most Americans still see the sport as the bastardized mud hockey rodeo it really is. Most of the upsurge in interest isn’t due to an increased fanbase; it’s simply a datapoint that shows a rather massive migrational pattern. There aren’t more mud hockey fans now, there are simply more of them in the US and presumably less of them somewhere else.
Despite the best efforts of ESPN, the mainstream press, and Mr. Vox Day, mud hockey is neither a sophisticated sport nor entertaining in any meaningful way. I’ve played soccer a little in my youth, and it is the only sport I’ve ever actually played that bored me while playing the game. And many of the basic strategies are the same as real hockey, except they’re painfully slow and take forever to develop because the field is too damn big.
So tell me how this is the most sophisticated sport in the world, yet it’s rules and structure are painfully simple, it’s played primarily by dirt-poor peasants, and is about as spectator-friendly as distance running, shuffleboard, and high-impact macramé.
The whole thing, from top to bottom, seems as though its teeming with corruption, payoffs, match-fixing and point-shaving in that blatantly obvious way that most South Americans conduct every other aspect of their daily lives. As a true gambler at heart, this makes it extremely difficult to wager on mud hockey games with any confidence, and if I can’t even do that much, I’m sorry, you don’t have a sport; you have Friday Night Lights en Español.
I’ll just be glad when the goddamn thing is over with and the Mexicans put away their garish flags and Cruz Azul jerseys.


2 Responses

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  1. Doom said, on June 17, 2014 at 19:31

    Finally, someone who understands! Mostly. Not trying to top your article, just a place to vent, seeing and responding… something.

    Now, while I hate all sports, because I don’t trust them, between drugging the “athletes” into performance and the rest, I can’t do it. Huh? From the recent clarification that painkillers are passed out like candy to pro-ballers, at least, the doping deal with bikers (they all do it, the best ones don’t get caught), to the realization that the teams, games, balances, and matches, are rigged or dumbed down… WWE, all of them, I still think there is talent involved.

    While there may be talent in soccer, it is a socialist sport. Everyone can play somewhere. There really aren’t plays to memorize. There isn’t much skin in the game other than what someone wants to put in or someone else wants to take, if even that may be penalized. And it is slow and boring. Why do they even bother scoring? Why not base winning on who has the ball the longest. That actually might put some competition into the thing.

    Golf, even tennis, is more entertaining to watch. Watching grass grow tops it. If someone tries to force me to watch it, there will be war.

    Ah, but I think you are wrong on one account. There are more mud-hockey players. Soccer fields everywhere, and I meant everywhere*. The sport is springing up everywhere. It’s the only sport most kids can play. I suppose it beats watching television. But what happened to playing war games, or even hid and seek? Kids either sit in front of a screen, or play soccer. Really? But, yeah. That may signal the end, or just be a transition stage before people start disconnecting from screens and going back to life. Time will tell.

    *reminds me of the snake temples popping up in the first Conan movies… only it’s an ugly ball cult

  2. Giraffe said, on June 19, 2014 at 16:37

    as the bastardized mud hockey rodeo it really is.

    I really like that turn of phrase.

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