I’m really not that into sports. At least not the team sports we were forced to do in P.E. class back in the day. Killerball, fieldhockey, handball, basketball… major yawn. I wasn’t a particularly athletic kid. Nor was I physically competitive. So I just put up with everything because of the power of compulsory exercise and did most things half-heartedly.
In the end I just learned to skip P.E. or “forget” my trainers at home. Or complain about the marvels that occur to a woman. You know.
But there’s another side to team sports that has always appealed to me. The cultural aspect of it all that makes it intriguing. I don’t like doing most sports but I actually quite enjoy watching some. Why?
Take for example the FIFA World Cup anno 1994. Sweden was digging gold in the USA (which by the way is the best Swedish football-related song EVER) and even though we didn’t quite make it, we got pretty bronze medals and a whole nation in euphoria. Everytime I hear that song I just think back and smile.
Okay, I was 3, but I do remember the song and can imagine the joy -.-
Point is, I love how football (in its only true form) gives people the sense of we and us. Not that I encourage hostility towards other nations, but I do encourage familiarity within one. Being a child of an ethnic background different from the country I’ve grown to know and love as my home, I have encountered some personal difficulties identyfing myself to one culture alone. Something as simple as being in a park watching a game live on a huuuge flat-screen TV along with hundreds or thousands of other people just makes it so easy.
Unless your team plays really shit and they don’t make the cut… But then you’ll just have to be a football enthusiast and actually know what good play is. Luckily, I’ve got that covered.
Henrik Larsson FIFA World Cup 1994 S.
Bring it on South Africa FIFA World Cup 2010! Waka waka!