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Monday, July 12, 2010

¡Campeones del Mundo!

I watched the game at the port along with about 10,000 other people. Sure, I would have been more comfortable at home and I could have actually seen the game better, but I’m not 100 years old yet and I don’t mind getting into the scrum once in a while for an important game and I think this one qualified. I would have never forgiven myself had I taken the easy path and stayed home or watched the match in a mellow bar somewhere.  The mob was completely crazy and I enjoyed every second of it.

I thoroughly enjoyed the day-long, day-after World Cup hangover here in Spain. I only wish that I could have been in Madrid for the victory parade as the team meandered through the city on top of a double-decker bus. It looked like millions of fans turned out to celebrate. One part of me is relieved I wasn’t in Madrid because I was exhausted after the night before (and the fact that I had to get up bright and early today).  It has been the end to a very long and enjoyable trip for all of us who are fans of the Spanish national team. Spain finally did it and I was here to see it all!

A month-long hate affair has finally ended between the vuvuzuela and me.  I hope to never hear one as long as I live.  After watching football all evening I would often go to bed am have vuvuzuelas blowing in my head hours later.  After listening to this horrible little instrument throughout the World Cup I grabbed one out of a guy’s hand last night in a bar, hyper-ventilated a bit, and then let out the longest vuvuzuela blast in recorded history.  Those things get, like, exponentially louder the longer you blow on them. I blasted it for probably over a minute. I had a circle of people around me who probably would have lynched me if they weren’t generally nice, non-violent types. Spanish people love to make noise so the vuvuzuelas caught on here during the Cup but, like fireworks during Fallas, once the party is over people have put them away until the next time around—whenever that may be.  Never is good for me, is never good for you? (Previous joke stolen from an old New Yorker cartoon)

It was a long and grueling month for fans beginning on June 11th with the opening ceremonies and first game. I need to check in to a spa or rehab center for football addicts. I can always read more. Lord knows I read precious little during World Cup, certainly not my self-mandated 50-pages-a-day minimum.  This detour comes only once every four years and it’s not like I was going to miss any of it seeing that how—from the start—I knew Spain was going to win it all. God damn it was fun.

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