What are we supposed to cheer for? (June 19, 2006)

I was watching soccer last night, and the Swiss went nuts when Korea scored a goal against France. Why could this be? Surely the locals are more sympathetic for the French team? Or maybe they just like Korea because those orange uniforms looked kinda red on the crummy T.V. we were using?

Oh no. The truth is more bizarre. Fans of U.S. college football can guess where this is going: These goofballs were cheering for a tie! I finally realized that we were supposed to cheer whenever:


The highlight is the last goal. I wish I could find a video clip of it online to show you. Not one player had control of that ball. They were not kicking the ball. Rather, the ball was bouncing off of them all. It looked like pinball.

The slow-motion replay was the best. (Oh yes, there is slow-motion replay of goals, in a game where a typical score is 1-1.) You could see swarms of players from both teams gathered around the ball and just staring at the ball. They could not manage to actually kick it, so they were all trying Jedi mind tricks. "Ohhh noooooo" for the French; "goooo innnnn" for the Koreans.

Fun stuff. And, uh, go Switzerland, I guess. Congratulations on the, err, tie. Of a game you were not actually in.

Lex Spoon