Saturday, May 29, 2010

An Idiot's World Cup Preview

I freely and routinely admit that I’m an idiot. I don't understand a lot of things. Things like string theory, the Dave Matthews Band's popularity, Basque, calendars, short stocky women who wear knee-high boots, the iPad, the appeal of items decorated with Burberry plaid or those weird Gucci and Louis Vuitton logos, why people buy Saturns, the factors that led to World War I, people who aren't lactose intolerant but nevertheless don't like cheese, Sarah Palin, the midget in front of me at Obama's motorcade, Flemish sours, the DC area's snow removal policy or lack thereof, the evolution of the Supreme Court's commerce clause jurisprudence, religion, transplant surgery, how anyone ever came up with the idea for circumcision and said "eh, let's give it a try and see if it pans out," the telegraph, telephones, television, telekinesis, kinases, knitting, silent k's, why the "g" is silent in "gnat" but not in "gnu," and the final scene of the final episode of the Sopranos.

And soccer. I just don't get it. It seems like everyone around the world is head-over-heels* in love with soccer. I’ve tried to watch but it’s just terrible. Nothing happens. I thought the problem was that I just don’t understand the finer points of the game, or that I haven’t seen an excellent display of soccer prowess. So I looked around on the ghooghles for some soccer clips and I found “The Goal of the Century.” Should be pretty amazing right? It has to be! It’s The Goal of the Century!! Wanna see it? Here it is:



I still don’t get soccer. Particularly if this is the best soccer-related occurrence in the last 100 years.

But with the World Cup nigh upon us I felt that I should try to adopt a team to root for. The US team was a logical choice until I looked at the roster. The closest thing to a zman on the team is "Jonathan Spector." It might be fun to root for Herculez Gomez because then I can yell "Herk-a-LEEZ! Herk-a-LEEZ!" like in the Nutty Professor. But they'll probably lose early so I need another team if I want to follow one deep into the tournament.

So I sloppily searched the FIFA World Cup site for zmen. It appears that there isn’t a single Zoltan to be found on anyone’s roster. Slovakia has a Zdenko and a Zabavnik. The Serbs really bring the zheat: Zeljko, Zdravko, Zoran, and Zigic all rock the kokarda. Ivory Coast has some dude named Didier Zokora which seems cool at first but I'll wind up making "Didier, I hardly know her" jokes and that gets old fast. Brazil has no zmen, probably because they're a bunch of fatherless bastards - about 69% of the team has no last name. One Brazilian is named "Grafite;" maybe he's into mechanical pencils? Cameroon has a Zoua and cool jerseys but I can't find their country on a map. Slovenia has a Zlatko AND a Zlatan, and I work with a cool guy from Slovenia so they have good watercooler potential. The Nordic teams have no zmen but they have tons of names with no consonants, as opposed to the central Europeans who would like to buy some vowels.

Accordingly, I'm rooting for the Slovenians. I understand that they may be even worse than the US team, which means my approach to finding a team that can go deep in the tournament is less than scientifically sound. But this also means I'll likely have an excuse to stop watching the World Cup without having to admit I don't understand why it's entertaining or even interesting.

I'll try to drum up more information on the Slovenian squadron from my inside source. Keep an eye out for some Slovenian/Ghostface crossover fillah.

*I also don’t understand the phrase “head-over-heels.” My head is always over my heels unless I’m executing a bicycle kick. Which will never happen.

17 comments:

d-train said...

dennis hopper - yet another celeb death. not as crazy as '09 though ya know?

Mark said...

I didn't know he had cancer. Is their a 3rd celeb death coming this weekend?

Mark said...

Z, I can understand that you don't get soccer. But I doubt you can't appreciate the beauty in the skill and timing of the Findley-Donovan-Altidore goal during today's friendly.

d-train said...

there's a 3rd comin this wkd Mark. no doubt in this small mind hardcharger.
meanwhile - my holiday wkd is so far consisting of waiting in jax airport, cancelled flight to tulsa okla for a work trip, confirmed for a re-route but come to find out, not confirmed. really, really good times. wicked awesome.

d-train said...

notre dame lacrosse - catch the fevah!

d-train said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
rob said...

that waiting room conversation between hopper and coleman has got to be a doozy.

Mr. Truck said...

WWI: didin't gavrilo princip assassinate archduke ferdinand?

soccer: don't use your hands and KICK it in the goal. this is hard b/c we normally use our hands to do stuff.

be careful you don't end up as a screaming parent on the sideline, because soccer LOOKS so easy, just KICK IT IN! but remember, everyone is using their FEET.

also remember, unlike football, baseball, and basketball, when the ball is moving around the entire game, that is because they are actually "playing soccer," that's right, they pretty much play soccer the entire time, without time-outs, foul shots, innings, play-calling, huddles, etc. the people are "deciding" what to do with the ball each time they get it, without the help of signs, signals, radios in helmets, plays, etc. you retard.

Mr. Truck said...

also, i appreciate your list and general idiocy, but how do you not understand the telegraph? i can see not understand teleVISION, that seems pretty difficult, but i feel like if i was around then, i would have invented the telegraph.

zman said...

How does the telegraph work? You tap on the thing and it makes a beep 1,000 miles away. But how does it do that? And how to you get it to make the beep in the right place -- like how do you make the receiver beep at Igor's house as opposed to TR's house?

And I never said soccer was easy or stupid or anything pejorative, all I said was that I don't get it, and that I'm an idiot. I even made the effort to come up with 2 (two!) teams to root for expressly so I would watch the World Cup and make the effort to figure out why soccer is entertaining.

zman said...

And why did Princip assassinate the archduke? What's the difference between a duke and an archduke? I understand very little.

rob said...

princip was in league with sacco, vanzetti, and gucci. the archduke was killed for his handbag.

Mr. Truck said...

i'm making this up, but you either interrupt the electrical signal short or long, so you either get a dot or a dash. i could have invented that.

MR TRUCK!

princip assassinated the archduke because he was an ASSASSIN. that's what they do. also, he was a member of some scary sounding society, the black hand or something. so you need to live up to the name.

zman said...

The Black Hand? Let me wet my beak.

Mark said...

I just saw a musician friend of mine. He informed me that a mutual friend/roomate was back in town because his hardcore band was reuniting for a show tonight (they had moderate success and were a bug deal around here but broke up b/c half the band were drug addicts. I told my friend that attending a hardcore show probably wouldn't be the best thing for my neck. He was perplexed. I tried to explain to him the natural hazards of attending such a show. He still didn't understand. My friends, are not the smartest people around. Then again, neither am I. I'm probably gonna attend.

rob said...

what the hell is going on in chicago? somebody play some defense already.

zman said...

Tonight I feel like I should just destroy myself.