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The end of the affair July 4, 2006

Posted by BiB in Uncategorized.

I don’t know if this is England-being-out-and-the-interest-waning talking or honesty, but the World Cup really needs to be a week shorter. There is no need for fifty-day hiatuses between matches once the group stage and second round are over. Presumably, once every four years, a handful of footballers can be called upon to play a few matches more than they usually do in a fairly limited time. And I’m even struggling to still desperately want Germany to win the bastard. The stickers of the German flag given to me by a drug-addict “for my wife” early on in the tournament – on my way to meet some bloggers (and other humans) for the first time, actually. Well, not other humans. I’d met some of those before – still poke out of my wallet and I’m yet to adorn them on my mug. But a mini German flag does now perch on top of the map of Europe – darlings, invest in a map of Europe, or anywhere interesting. Our guests spend practically ALL their time looking at it – in the hallway. And I’ll try my best to urge the boys on in front of the TV this evening. Unfortunately, I have remembered I have to work to finance being alive. Well, fortunate I’ve remembered, I suppose, but unfortunate I have to do so. I still haven’t forgiven my parents for not being The Queen and Prince Phillip (although I’d hate all that pretending to want to have a military career. Did even Edward – aka Betty – go through with the charade?). So translate my piffle I must.
Still, maybe I’ll be eating my words next week when Germany will go back to hating itself and flags will be removed, folded and either tucked away at the bottom of the deepest drawer in the house or burnt ceremoniously. TVs will sheepishly return to every café’s dusty cellar and enormous flat-screens will go back to the hire shop. Depression levels will soar. Strangers will stop feigning interest in how long is left for the sake of striking up drunken conversation. Even if Germany win the thing, the honeymoon could be short-lived. I have some Frenchies in town at the moment and their quiver of glee at winning in 1998 didn’t get them to the millennium. Not by a long chalk. Or country mile. And what with old Mr. Ullrich having been suspended – why have the words ‘ablative absolute’ just leapt into my brain? – the Romans laid waste to Carthage. What? I mean, sorry, what with Jan – oh, I see he’s an Ossi. I quite fancy him, actually – out of the Tour de France – Jan has no idea why he’s been suspended, by the way – Germany can’t even pretend to get consumed with that. Carnival will be over and we’ll have to make our own entertainment again. (Personally, I’ll be doing some embroidery and singing songs with my friends around a campfire with nothing but a guitar in the way of modern technology.)
Maybe I need a holiday.



1. lukeski - July 4, 2006

The Germany-Italy match has been bliss for me as a purist – and the couple of days break meant that I could watch the Simpsons and Father Ted, read, cook, clean, look for a new job, play golf and blog. If anything, the tournament seems much shorter than it ever did when I was younger, but, then again, the six weeks of school holidays whizz by these days as well… Old age?

2. Wyndham - July 4, 2006

My commiserations, Bib – great game, though!

3. BiB - July 4, 2006

Fuck, fuck and fuck. Oh well, the tension-free party can go on for another few days…

4. chendaberry - July 5, 2006

Don’t worry, it means we get another chance to look at those sexy Italians. Surely not even your lovely-Germans goggles, bib, can make the German lot as sexy as yummy Luca Toni et al?

5. BiB - July 5, 2006

Admittedly, the Italian team seem like an awfully nice bunch, and Cannavaro’s smile is heaven. But there’s the long-hair factor, which I just cannot forgive. I’ve seen photos of Cannavaro and Totti with long hair, and they instantly – to me – become utterly unfanciable. Anyway, Arne Friedrich still beats them all. Did you see him standing there sternly in just his shorts at the end of the match? It looked like the prelude to his starring role in some gay porn film.

I went out last night – for the 79th night in a row. I REALLY do need this carnival to end – and, to my utter delight, the atmosphere was nicer than ever. Good old Berliners. It made me think the place was somehow special. (Although there was the odd bit of (fairly good-humoured) moaning about Spaghettifressers and no pizza ever again.)

6. Wyndham - July 5, 2006

I have to say the Italians have the best kit – very simple. for no better reason that that, I’ll have to support them now.

7. BiB - July 5, 2006

My mother phoned yesterday and could hardly speak for fury at the Portuguese players. “It was NEVER a red card!” etc. So we are both hoping for an Italy France final. But who will sacrifice the blue, if so? A Dane who was here at the weekend said the Italians’ kit made it look like they were sweating. But a different Dane also said that the Italians had the best kits last time round. I don’t remember the kit so well but they had a fucking dishy player. Was it Vieri? Does he still play? Or is he now back drug-running or people-smuggling in a boat off Albania? No way of knowing…

8. chendaberry - July 6, 2006

Hhmm, obviously different tastes in men. Which is a good thing I suppose. Otherwise we’d be fighting. Don’t actually like long hair on men meself either (though I must say I did when I was 18… ‘nother story), but you could always send them to the ‘salon’.

9. Bowleserised - July 6, 2006

“A Dane who was here at the weekend said the Italians’ kit made it look like they were sweating.”

Exactly Teuteronomy’s comment!

10. BiB - July 6, 2006

Yes, long hair can be remedied. A woman from the 100%-long-term-unemployment house across the street has a boyfriend with long hair and big muscles who is often to be seen standing on the balcony in not many clothes. The Russian tries to arouse my interest. But I boycott his muscles because of the hair. Maybe I should point out that there is a salon on the ground floor of this building.

…or perhaps it’s meant to hide their sweat. But fresh, sporty sweat is nowt to be ashamed of, surely, even for appearance-conscious Italians?

11. Bowleserised - July 6, 2006

“…or perhaps it’s meant to hide their sweat. But fresh, sporty sweat is nowt to be ashamed of, surely, even for appearance-conscious Italians?”

Mainstream Italian manliness is a bit of a mystery to me. When in Rome I indicated some pastel coloured Pringle jumpers to RFM and suggested that he buy one if he was looking for new clothes. This was intended as a joke, because it’s not really his style, but he presumed that I meant it was somehow a gay look*. Which I didn’t. That’s how heterosexual Italian ragazzi dress.

* not in a taking offence kind of way

12. leon - July 7, 2006

Italian men seem to be able to get away with wearing knitwear in a way that the British can’t. Pastel sweaters and improbably chunky knits are always the first things to reach for if you’re going for the whole Euro-trash look.

13. BiB - July 9, 2006

Pringle jumpers! Hallucinogenic flashbacks…

Yes, Italians even manage sartorial style on the football pitch. That’s saying something (though I don’t know what, quite).

14. daggi - July 11, 2006

Personally, I’ll be doing some embroidery and singing songs with my friends around a campfire with nothing but a guitar in the way of modern technology.

I assume you’re be joining me in that village I’m going back to then. Bring a guitar.

15. BiB - July 11, 2006

I don’t know how to play! Actually, I can’t play any instrument, which is one of my greatest regrets.

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