I began watching the World Cup four years ago and became enthralled with the passion, skill and enthusiasm of the game. Soccer as it is called in the US is right up there with watching paint dry for most Americans. There’s the endless running up and down and low score that keeps most people at the chips and quacamole in the kitchen instead of glued to the big screen.
The general feeling among the expats has been to cheer for Mexico, and Central and South America over Europe, Africa and Japan. Of course there’s also the US matches which have been nail biters as well.
The locals have been quite curious and appreciative as we scream for Mexico. No beers required.
Today is a big game for Mexico which determines whether they advance or stall. EVERYONE in Mexico has plans as to where they will watch the game. A huge screen will be set up in town for mass viewing. Restaurants are advertising take away food so no one is stuck in the kitchen during the game. The energy is electric.
Futol (as opposed to American football) does not play to TV audiences. There are no breaks for advertisers that have paid millions for a 30 second piece of you. There is amazing skill, honed from childhood, beautiful muscular bodies that are every straight woman and gay man’s dream, amazing acting when bumped and tripped by the opposition, and even front page drama when one player has this weird proclivity for biting his opponent.
This week while making small talk with our new young doctor, Lisa asked him about futbol and his face lit up. There’s something about not referring to Mexico’s pride and joy as soccer that is greatly appreciated and shows respect.
So if you’ve never watched World Cup futbol (it only happens every four years), now’s your chance. At least catch the final match on July 13, 2pm CT. Go to a sports bar and pick a team and yell with the crowd and above all, don’t call it soccer.