Sunday, June 27, 2010


I’m actually kind of relieved that the US lost to Ghana yesterday in the World Cup; now I can turn my attention to more pressing concerns like seeing if the water in Lake Washington is warm enough to swim in yet and more to the point, whether Tim Lincecum can overtake Ubaldo Jimenez in this year’s Cy Young Award race.

It was fun, though, to be in a bar having Guinness for breakfast and seeing how the place filled to the bursting point well before noon; I had a seat that enabled me to see five television sets simultaneously, but what was really fun to watch were the expressions on people’s faces as they stared at the screen back behind my head. Mouths would fall open and eyes would go bright and then jaws would be clenched and heads shaken. Plenty of times people even did the classic extended hands to the ears replete with hair-pulling and teeth gnashing.

It’s a shame, for sure, but I’ll bet, all things considered, the win is a way bigger deal in Ghana than it would have been here had the US pulled it out, so good for them with the hopes of a continent and all on their backs; for us, it was really more like the hopes of a lot of people who drive their kids to soccer practice in minivans, not quite the same thing, I think.

So I can go back now to rooting for Holland as is my usual practice in the World Cup; I still think their “home team” status in South Africa will serve them well, but I’m going to be pulling hard for Ghana now, too. (Probably not hard enough to get up and start drinking at 7:00 in the morning, although, it being summer and all, that’s not too difficult a sell.)

In the end, I’d rate the US’ performance this year about B-plus; not bad, but far from Tim Lincecum status.


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