Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Again 2002! Go go Korea!

So here's something weird. I'm actually a little sad for Korea that they did not advance in the World Cup. ! I know, I guess I got brainwashed or something over there. I mean, it's different with "my" team -- who ever really expected the U.S. to advance, right? And as far as I can tell in my galavanting about the Northeast these last two weeks, no one but NO one here seems to much care, of course. When I checked the standings in the morning paper at Grandma's house I was met with blank stares by four generations of Napikoskis; when my eyes strayed from the Texas Hold'em screen to the World Cup game screen in the bar in Virginia Beach, mine seemed to be the only eyes straying.

But I really got into the World Cupness of it all those last few weeks in Korea. Besides the sea of red shirts("Be the red!") and Korean spirit ("Korea fighting!") and various bad English (they call it "Konglish") slogans encouraging a repeat of their triumphant 2002 World Cup showing, when Korea hosted the event, a historical moment for the country you are incessantly reminded of when you're there...besides all that I've also been hanging out with English speaking friends who care about soccer (football!), don't forget. From England, Ireland, and the like. Canada too.

Like, I think I'm probably now rooting for England just 'cause my co-worker/neighbor Englishman buddy over there got me kind of jazzed about his team. And I can't believe Korea's out. Normally I might be for France, but they were in Korea's group, see. I feel a bit of loyalty to Korea. I even taught my nephew how to cheer "Tae-ha-min-guk!" (it means "Republic of South Korea!") until my sister was like, great, he'll be saying "guk" around other people who have no idea why. But it just means "land" or "people"...sigh.

I mean, here's a typical conversation: "Oh, teacher, you're leaving? So sad. We'll miss you" etc. Then, "When are you going back to your country?" I reply, "June 10." They say, "Oh, you go home just in time to watch the World Cup!" Like, they so don't get that no one in the U.S. cares! Too funny.

I do like Brazil. Maybe I'll root for Brazil. I guess my other quarterfinal picks will be Germany and Ukraine.

And yes, I will continue talking about this, aware that my U.S. audience does not much care. I have been heartened to at least find the World Cup ON in every bar, whether in Virginia, D.C., or here in Massachusetts, as well as on the TVs in BWI airport and so forth. I'm just looking at things so differently than I did in 2002.

I guess that last statement is true on many levels!

1 comment:

raine said...

I personally don't care.

but I've found a ton of folks around me that sooooo totally do.

It's gotten kind of annoying, actually. My cubemate at work even took one morning off to watch.

You might find this interesting (obsessed friend of mine). Or you may not.