Monday, May 08, 2006

Painful Pennant

Most people in Britain, and indeed a fair few around the world, are aware that the football world cup is on its way. Here, in Britain, it's going to be unavoidable and I, for one, will want to avoid it as best I can.

"But why aren't you getting behind your team, Curly?"

I hear you ask, it's simple - England are not my team. The Welsh didn't qualify, neither did the Scots or either of the Irish teams. The second that I realised that Wales couldn't qualify for the cup, I lost any trace of interest that I may have had. I was happy to carry on with my day-to-day life, watching my much-preferred sport of rugby and ignoring the hullabaloo that was bound to kick off over the border in England. That is becoming an increasingly difficult task as we get closer to the event itself...

The headlines are dominated with pre-world cup build up, mainly consisting of pictures of spoilt young boys with their ankles broken. These headlines are only just kept off the front pages by political scandal involving secretaries having sex with their boss (who wouldn't want to have sex with him?) . TV adverts starring famous footballers are cropping up left right and centre and the year 1966 is being used in conversation far more than I'm comfortable with.

All of the above were easily dealt with, I avoided reading the articles in the paper and stayed away from the TV. That done, I carried on with my life happily, until the very second that I saw a car containing four blokes shouting "IN-GER-LAND" drive past with a silly, flappy, annoying St.Georges cross flying from each window... and then I snapped. My mood changed from singing to the birds and skipping along the pavement (not quite, that'd look a bit gay) to an overwhelming desire to snap the stupid little bits of plastic off the car and hurl them at the driver. I restrained myself because, dear reader, that is what the driver wanted me to do.

Even if that was all a bit of banter, the worst things about the whole 20 seconds of that experience were the flags themselves. I really don't mind seeing other nations flags being displayed in our small principality, in fact I'm all for a bit of national pride, but do you HAVE to annoy everyone by putting a flag from each window of your car? Huw is deeply annoyed by people displaying text on the flag, I'm a little less tolerant and am infuriated by the sight of them all together. My reasons for this are as follows:-

  • They impose something on me that I'm not interested in (the fact that the world cup is here)
  • Some of them make a' brrrrrrrtttkkkkkbrrrrtkkkk' noise as they pass by
  • They look shit.
  • Most irritating of all is the fact that they rip within a few miles of you driving and a damaged flag is NOT a good advertisement for your country. As the flag keepers in America state "One flag pole with one ragged flag is one flag pole too many"*.

So, it's inevitable that I'm going to be quite angry until the hype and general nonsense which surrounds the world cup dissipates - god help me if England win, which brings me on to my next topic, England winning things. England are currently in possession of the Rugby World Cup, in which they defeated Australia in a painfully close final back in 2003. England also beat Australia in a painfully close manner to win back the much-coveted cricket prize of the Ashes in 2005 (after 16 years in Aussie hands). All I ask of you is this, please do not in any way support England in the Footy, if they win this World Cup too, the triangle of sporting achievements will be complete, evil will rein supreme and they will not stop going on about it for YEARS to come. I will not be able to live a healthy, normal life if this happens, please do everything in your power to stop them - for the sake of the poor Australians (who had TWO opportunities to stop them), the Celtic nations, Germany, the entire rest of the world and most importantly, ME.

Thank you.

ps This is funny, and related to my post - nifty.

pps Cheers to Huw for inspiring me to go off on one.

*In fact, they actively encourage you to report a damaged flag here. I would encourage any residents of Britain to do the same when they see a damaged flag, lets see if we can get the flag keepers on our side to stamp out these cheap pieces of tack.


At 1:52 pm, Blogger Huw thought it was best to say...

As much as it tempts me, I would never be as irresponsible as to try and incite you, your friends and anyone reading to snap those pissing flags off people's cars. Do you hear me? Never.

At 2:34 pm, Blogger Neal thought it was best to say...

When my favorite hockey and basketball teams were eliminated within a few days of one another, I lost all interest in sports for the duration of my stay here. Maybe I'll learn to play real football or rugby from some of the kiwis here.

At 7:57 pm, Blogger Teri thought it was best to say...

"who wouldn't want to have sex with him?"
oh, eeeeeewwwwwwwwwwwwww! that's all.

And P.S. to Neal: what, you trying to get hurt?

At 8:57 pm, Blogger Chris Cope thought it was best to say...

I'll be surprised if England even make it out of their group. But it is logistically possible that the England and the U.S. could meet in a semi-final match. It is also logistically possible for England and the U.S. to meet in the final. In this latter scenario, not only would the improbability of such an occurrence risk some sort of implosion in the universe, but the aggressive flag waving of both nations might completely alter weather patterns.

At 12:37 am, Blogger Afe thought it was best to say...

I have a solution to your dilemma - support Australia in the world cup. C'monnnnn we need all the help we can get.

At 12:54 pm, Blogger Curly thought it was best to say...

Huw - I'd Never even DREAM of suggesting that either.

Neal - Yes, learn to play rugby. It's a great sport and that sports hall floor you've got looks just ideal for falling over on.

Teri - Oh come on, he's sexy, vibrant, toned, interesting....

Cope - I hope that scenario doesn't ever occcur. Unless the weather patterns change so drastically that all footballs melt under extreme temperatures?

Afe - Sorry mate, I've already sworn allegiance to Sweden this time round. Australia came second after a coin toss unfortunately.

At 10:02 pm, Blogger Chris thought it was best to say...

If we win all three - World Cup (Football and Rugby) and the Ashes - then apocalypse is surely upon us. Rooney looks a bit like the antichrist in my opinion, and his foot is healing suspisciously quickly. I'm sure Nostradamus said something about the 'unholy triangle' in one of his dafter moments.
Anyway, I will still be supporting England (or Ing-errr-laaaaand as most soccer oiks call it) although I fear it may be futile. I know it must be pretty annoying for you boys, I've exerienced a similar situation. I know what it was like to be an Englishman in Aberystwyth when the Welsh won the rugby.


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