That’s right, it is FIFA World Cup Soccer time. I am not a soccer fan, but during the World Cup and the Olympics I definitely tune in. I like high-scoring and fast paced sports and soccer typically doesn’t deliver for me. But there is something about the energy and intensity of the players and fans during the World Cup and the Olympics that makes it hard not to watch. The athleticism of the athletes is astounding. Anyone that can run around for 90 minutes in that heat has to be committed, either to their sport, their country or a mental institution.
I turned on the first match between Mexico and South Africa, the hosting country, on Friday. I listened while I worked and turned around every now and then to check to see what was happening. I had several meetings during the game so I kept the volume low enough to where I could hear what was being said in the meetings and also listen for any events on the field. But there was a strange buzzing sound. I spun around in my chair a few times expecting to see a large bee buzzing around my head. I switched channels, turned the volume up and down, thinking that there was something wrong with my surround sound speakers.
At last, I turned to my trusty companion, Google. Ah-ha! The strange buzzing noise is a vuvuzela or stadium horn. According to this article on Freep.com, South African fans love to blow the vuvuzela. I don’t think I could stand to hear that annoying noise constantly blaring in my ears. But what is annoying to me sitting at home in the cool, dark comfort of my basement lair, could potentially be dangerous to the fans at the soccer matches. According to the Freep.com article, the constant noise can cause hearing loss, and also spread germs during South Africa’s cold and flu season.
Soccer fans are a weird bunch. I can understand now why so many fans riot and go crazy during and after the matches. If I had to sit around watching people run around for 90 minutes with an entire stadium blowing vuvuzelas, I would probably riot if my team lost. That noise has to have mind-altering effects after long exposure.
I can also see why soccer players are murdered when they make mistakes during the game. Imagine running around for 90 minutes in sweltering heat, giving it everything you have, in front of the entire world, and one of your teammates making a mistake that earned your opponents a goal. I don’t think you would have issues with someone shooting him in a dark alley after the game. If I was on the team, I would reserve just enough energy so I could join in on kicking his ass myself if no one else did.
I will continue to watch the World Cup, but after that I am done with soccer until the Summer Olympics roll around again. I will stick to hockey and football (yeah, that’s right, American Football). At least they take a break so you can get up from the couch and take a leak during the game. But if you have to watch the World Cup, stay safe, remember don’t blow someone else’s vuvuzela or let them blow yours, because blowing someone else’s vuvuzela is like blowing every vuvuzela that person has ever blown before and everyone else that has shared that person’s vuvuzela.
I just had to say it a few more times. There it is out of my system now.