Saturday morning football.
A football match in Antigua, Guatemala.
I’d never seen a football match in person. Football, or soccer as we call it at home, has never really been my sport. Not that I really have a sport. I used to watch a lot of American football back in college. But, really, I just liked sitting in Block I: U of I’s student section where we got to dance and make Gumby out of plastic cards and socialize. I now enjoy an occasional White Sox game. But really I like those more for the hot dogs and, again, the socializing, than the actually game.
In Asia I ended up watching a lot of football on TV. Especially during the Eurocup where I’d find myself watching games nearly every night at 2 in the morning with Europeans who actually cared about the outcome.
The other night, one of the Dutch students at my house commented to me that that is why American sports are boring: people go for the beer and the socializing, not for the game itself. I told him that a lot of people actually do care about the sports but for some, like me, that is certainly true.
So, on Saturday morning, when a group of us headed to the outskirts of town to watch a football match, that is why I was there. For the food, for the socializing, for the atmosphere, and not really for the game itself.
Antigua won, 1-0, with the only point scored right before we arrived. I suppose though that it was a slightly thrilling match. Though no points were scored while we were there, a lot of people went down. Which is action enough for me. Plus I got to see guys walking around selling pizza slices straight from the box and chant with the crowd every time a goal was almost scored: An-ti-gua! An-ti-gua! Which is, also, action enough for me.