Tuesday, 15 June 2010

World Cup Footie in the Apple

Despite the fact I am in the land of the people we were up against for our first group game in the world cup, I proudly bought an England shirt- (prob never would if I was in England!) and wore it to the Beer Garden in Queens where we were meeting up with a couple of friends.

It's well known the Americans are not really into football and instead call it Soccer. Football to them is that helmet donning Rugby like game that I cant really say I ever got my head around, but the atmosphere and the sheer number that came out to support thier country in this beer garden was in the hundreds!
They had flags, costumes, Uncle Sam's.. they even had a woman who had bought her face paints with her and painted the Stars and Stripes on peoples cheeks.

They also had a chant 'U-S-A! U-S-A!'
to which a couple of English supporters and I mean two, stood up to sing 'You've only got one song, you've only got one song, you've only got-one-song'
It was really funny and a great atmosphere.

Just when the game was about to start, a woman who had been chanting USA leaned over to me and said you will win, and we both just laughed! after I arrogantly said "I Know!' It was really fun and I thought it was great how two opposing teams could have a laugh and share banter, whilst watching it miles away from South Africa- the true meaning of the World Cup.
Then they went mental when they scored! Mental! Like they were so surprised- as were we! It was funny, but I'm sure the 12 of us English in the place were thinking we'd score again!
Then the mood changed, there were about 4 guys, rather big burley blokes, yelling '*uck the British!" many times, of course they weren't even playing the British, but to point this out seemed like risking my life.
These guys were very loud, a small minority but spoiled the game for me a bit none-the-less.. I saw it as pointless, racist and bordering on US hooliganism. They had a lot more people join them in shouting '*uck BP' which is equally pointless and little to do with the people of England. This is the first time in my life in the US I've ever felt anti- British sentiment, and never felt so keen to defend my country and it's people in all my life.
This guy (on the right of this picture) at the end came up to me and said 'Boo to this woman, Boo!!' right in my face.. I was a little taken back. But when I realised he was so jubilant, I had to point out (much to the chagrin of my boyfriend who wanted me to ignore him), that the USA team didn't win.. it was a Draw.. a Tie, whatever they call it here, and I wouldn't be too proud of that goal really, it was hardly the mastery of football.
Me and my big mouth, though he was drunk and an English guy was standing next to him winding him up long before I got there!
Then.. the next day, this was the headline of the New York Post?!?!
Do they know the game at all???? I think this says it all.. Come on Eng-ger-land! I'll be watching again this Friday this time, probably at home on the couch! Oh and feel free to post comments if you think I'm a chicken and should brave it out there again.. in the city that misinterprets scores...

1 comment:

  1. Yeah, I saw the front page Sunday morning and thought, "Oh did we now? You sure about that?" As for the crazy banter, yeah I'm going to have to say that's typical bar craziness especially when a game is on. You do NOT want to be around when it's a major baseball or basketball game (I've been thrown into watching the basketball finals these last couple weeks, but it should finally be over soon)!

    Apparently A. played soccer for 6 or 8 years when he was younger so we caught a bit of the game this weekend. We totally missed our "grand" goal though.

    I'm not a soccer fan, but I do remember watching with my parents when I was little and the madness that would ensue when the announcer yelled "Gooooooaaaaaaal" for what felt like forever. Enjoy the excitement no matter where you watch it from :)