I am 100% willing to eat a bit of crow right now. That second half was MUCH better. We may not have won, but we played well, though obviously worn out in the extra time, and went down honorably. And those two players on the Ghana team going down for about 30 minutes each with “injuries” during the extra time was just utter bullshit.
USA, I still love you.
I’m writing this during halftime of the USA-Ghana game. And at this point, I have very very mixed feelings.
On one hand, I’ve never felt more excited about the US team in a World Cup match than I did as the national anthem played at the beginning of this game. After the match against Algeria on Wednesday, anyone would (and should) feel proud. Not only that, but I’ll just come out right now and say that I’m a bit of a Negative Nancy, but even I felt a pang of emotion when I saw Clint Dempsey’s face as he watched the flag while the crowd sang “and the rocket’s red glare/ their bombs bursting in air.”
On the other hand (and it’s a big other hand), I came into this game feeling a bit guilty. As everyone and their mom keeps repeating, Ghana is the only African team left in the Cup. Their bus even had the words “The Hope of Africa” painted on the side of it when they pulled up to Royal Bafokeng Stadium. And it may sound cheesy, but the World Cup is being held in Africa for the first time, and the last African team left beating obnoxious-world-super-power-but-only-mediocre-soccer-team is a beautiful story just waiting to happen. But what do you do when you’re a citizen of the obnoxious world super power/fan of their mediocre soccer team? My feelings of guilt are only made worse by this first half. It was clear just 33 minutes in that Ghana really wants this game more than we do. Our defense looked like they were still asleep about ten minutes in, and Ghana has, so far, had much more possession of the ball. They’re playing very good soccer right now. And we’re only playing half-asleep uninspired soccer (at best).
The lastest stab of guilt came just a few minutes ago when the ESPN announcer, Ian Darke, nearly called Ghana “Uganda.” This emphasis on Ghana being the last African team left has instantly transformed them into the African team, pan-Africanism (and not necessarily the good kind) at its best (worst?). (Ok, maybe I’m being unfair. But keep in mind my earlier admitting that I’m a Negative Nancy, and frankly, I’m frustrated as hell by this game.)
What to do, what to do…
Oh, and if you haven’t already heard, José Saramago died four days ago. Sad day.
It’s been a long time, but I’m still alive. And actually, despite a MASSIVE 24-hour allergy attack, things are going well. In Portland. Went to Powell’s (i.e. BOOK PARADISE). Got a half-dozen AMAZING books. Chad is a happy camper.
your mama’s callin
time to wax your ass
callous” —the haiku forum in New Delhi Craigslist