Soccer – The Most Important of Life’s Unimportant Things
I don’t even know where to begin with this game.
I’m not 100% sure there actually was a game.
I think it very well could have been a hallucination, dream, LSD flashback, or perhaps some sort of alternate universe cause by Wesley doing experiments in the Holodeck.
But whatever it was, it wasn’t a regular soccer game.
I actually would have been at the game, except for some lady who called my office last Friday, wanting to make an appointment for legal consultation. In a moment of pure unthinking stupidity, I told her 2:00 Tuesday would be fine, not remembering I was planning to be halfway to Frisco by then. Even more stupidly, I didn’t get her phone number to reschedule. So I’m waiting around the office Tuesday, wishing I was on the way to the game, and guess what?
She doesn’t show up.
At the time, I was perturbed. Now, I think it may have been for the best. It was tough enough watching that mess on television; I’m not sure I would have survived seeing it in person. My only real regret is that I didn’t get to hold up my “POSH WANTS ME” sign.
The game started at 7:00, but I didn’t start watching until about 8:00 (Hey, Cindy likes the Reba show, what can I say?).
Uncharacteristically (because I’m normally a Black Belt in Tivo) I goofed up and started watching in the middle of the first half instead of the beginning, so I did what any grown man would do in that situation: I shielded my eyes, I started yelling “Lalalalalalalala I Can’t Hear the Game Lalalalalalal” While Cindy rewound it to the beginning.
My youngest daughter, not hip to the whole protocol involved in pre-recorded games (she’s just a wee lass, and not yet wise to the ways of the world), chimes in and says, “The score is zero to four”. I give her a brief lecture on how we never, EVER tell Daddy the score of a game that’s been Tivo’d, but I laugh it off, because I know, as surely as I know anything, that the score can’t be 4-zip in the middle of the first half.
After watching about 15 minutes, it occurs to me that Youngest Daughter may have been right, so, in a panic, I start to fast forward. This is where the whole thing gets kinda Alfred Hitchcock-y. Two goals . . . three . . . .FOUR? Four @#$%&$ goals in 20 minutes? How can this possibly be?
Says the lovely Cid: “I saw the score too, but I didn’t want to upset you . . .”
As I feel reality, objectivity, and the very fabric of the space-time continuum start to melt around me, I see Arturo Alvarez Pull one back right before halftime.
“Okay”, I say to myself, “We pulled back three against United, we can pull back four against these losers.”
The rest of the game is really a blur, with only a few things sticking in my conscousness.
The first thing that I remember is that no matter how bad the referees were for the first two Superliga games, those two clowns, combined, can’t be worse than Kevin Stott. Unless he takes to calling games blindfolded and hopping on one leg, he’ll never have a worse game than this one.
But, given that we gave up six goals, one can hardly, in good conscience, blame Kevin for the loss.
The second thing I remember is that Landon Donovan had the gall to make a throat-slashing gesture at the crowd. First of all, it’s classless and pathetic. Second of all, most of the people there paid to see a guy on HIS TEAM. Idiot.
He may as well go play for Mexico if he’s going to be act like that. Though I doubt they’d have him.
Landon is now #1 on the all time MLS punk list, having overtaken Kyle Beckerman and Hunter Freeman in one fell swoop. I can’t even imagine rooting for Landon when he wears the Red, White, and Blue anymore. Even Cobi Jones got my love when he put on the colors, as much as I enjoyed hating him in league games.
I also seem to recall that Joe Cannon, sometime over the course of the evening, grew to be about eight feet tall and somehow gained the ability to move faster than the speed of light. It seems counterintuitive to say this about a guy who gave up 5 goals, but, I swear by Lev Yashin’s ghost the man was incredible. Unbelievable. He made saves that were absolutely not possible to make. I mean if you did the math, the equation wouldn’t come out even. If they made a movie of his performance, it would be under “Fiction” at Blockbusters.
He’s a god amongst men, that Joe Cannon. Or at least a demiurge.
And that, I think leads me to the conclusion of this strange, strange evening, which is just as screwed up and nonsensical as everything else that happened: Despite spotting the Galaxy a four-goal lead, despite getting robbed by Kevin Stott, despite that punk Donovan being so frustratingly good, despite ALL that . . .
If Joe Cannon wasn’t some sort of superhuman mutant magic uber-keeper, we would have won that game.
That’s almost too much for me to contemplate, while simultaneously holding on to my increasingly tenuous grasp on reality.
So I’ll see you Saturday, for the Dick’s Sporting Goods Rapids.
(Oh yeah, Mom, I was just kidding in the third paragraph, I never did LSD. And Wesly hasn’t been allowed in the Holodeck in several hundred Parsecs).
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