Though it’s nothing to really be boasting about, it’s a convenient plan I’ve got going here…being without a job once again for the World Cup. Four years ago I was just getting back from my stint teaching English abroad, not yet sure of my future. Presently, I’m in the middle of that painstaking process known as the job search. Luckily, since I am a ‘football’ fan, I at least have my days free in between interviews, to change from my business casual into my summer uniform of jean shorts and a tank, head to a bar and watch the matches live, to cheer with strangers who quickly become friends in the name of a common plight where we sip mimosas or pints of Stella, depending on the hour.
Yes, the men are beautiful. I won’t lie, that is a draw—their lean muscular legs and sculpted derrieres reminiscent of Italian marble statues, skin in every shade of white and brown glistening in sweat and tears, faces full of fervor. Gods at play. Gods, yes! It is the play however that keeps the games alive, the work of these awesome bodies, and the heart that goes into 90 minutes of down and dirty battle. It’s sitting at the edge of your seat waiting for that perfect sound of the ball hitting the net, that ever-joyful scream GOOOOAAAALLLL.
So now over three weeks in, the game has changed. Yes, I’ve always been a fan of foreign men, but for this, it was the US boys that had my heart. With them now finished and my personal second, for the sake of my roots, team Slovakia out now too, I am left with the question: Who now? For a minute it was team Ghana for their spirit. And the thought crossed my mind it should be Germany for their brawn and skill. And a friend suggested plain and simple, I cheer for anyone who’s not South American.
We’re down to four and the question still looms. And it’s one for which I quickly need to find an answer. The days go by, interviews continue, ‘thank you’ notes go out and I wait by the phone. If I could have it my way, I get an offer on July 13, once the last whistle has been blown, the cheers have died down and I have had my World Cup fill until it returns in 2014. Because, team or no team, I will find one to root for, and I will be there at the bar loving every gut-wrenching minute of it.