Tooting the Vuvuzela for Spain!
There’s no end of good things to be said about the Netherlands. Nobody trompes the oeil quite like Vermeer. They gave us Van Gogh and their brave and humane policies towards drugs and prostititution. Not to mention Dutch cut ‘n’ paste pop star Solex, who just wrote a great piece for Fanzine. What college student doesn’t have a fond, well worn memory of totally losing their shit on mushrooms at the Anne Frank house? If someone asked me in the abstract if Holland/the Netherlands is/are awesome. I would thrust my fist in the air and shout: “Yes! They/it are/is awesome!”
But there is a line on even my strongest allegiances.
I know it’s not easy to cheer on the team that defeats you. But after watching the Ghana-U.S. game on a tiny laptop with a Ghanian guy named Osekre and his Cameroonian Harvard solid state physics doctoral student friend, I felt like the World Cup is being held in South Africa and sort of seems like it should be Africa’s chance to be in the news for something good for a change. So after that I felt like I wanted Ghana to win the cup although that was clearly not in the cards.
But as Casey pointed out earlier this week, we’ve moved on to an all European final round. So I can’t help but feel like it would be kind of poor form for the Dutch to win in their former colonial territory of South Africa and some feel like part of the team’s edge has been from strong fan support including local Afrikaner fans. Clearly the Dutch soccer team are not a bunch of slave-trading colonists and local Afrikaner fans are not their Apartheid-endorsing parents but I guess for some kind of symbolic politics reason, my gut blasts a vuvuzela’s clarion call in favor of Spain, where people are in need of athletic victories to counteract growing unemployment and the recurring fear that they will be lumped in with debt-damaged Greece. -BB