If anyone was a fan of SCTV the way I was, you probably became aware of how unhip soccer was 25 years ago. SCTV was hosting its pledge week to drum up cash for programming. Guy Caballero, the station owner and President becomes a bit dismayed at the lackluster response, so he shows some footage of what SCTV will air if they don't get the money: soccer. Hours and hours of soccer. The phones start ringing.
Obviously, the huge amount attention being paid to FIFA's World Cup by billions of people worldwide shows that the sport isn't exactly as unhip as Guy Caballero suggested. Of course, he was a fictional station manager speaking to a fictional audience, but the hard truth in what he said was the undeniable disconnect North Americans have always had to professional soccer.
It's funny to see how some of my non-sporty acquaintances, who've never followed soccer outside of this World Cup extravaganza, let alone any team game like hockey, baseball, football or basketball, are all of a sudden huge observers of this international tornament. They sit in front of their tv sets and endure several hours of action packed play before the breathless game ends with a score of one to nil.
Then they drive to work the next day with a flag attached to their car.
That's not the way to do it. Forget about the flags on the cars, and forget about even watching the soccer games altogether. The World Cup is all about getting together with friends on a patio bar and drinking lots of booze. Then repeating it with every game until the World Cup ends. That's the way to do it, and that's why in North America, outside of the urban centres at least, it'll never catch on.
Posted at 10:56 am by Graeme_MacKay