The whole world's got a fever…

…and the only cure is soul-crushing boredom.

Soccer. The very word conjures up images of shaggy-maned, single-named foreigners collapsing as if their spines had been ripped out at the slightest touch. Legions of colorfully festooned fans swaying and chanting along in drunken unison. Hooliganism that makes your typical Detroit Pistons championship celebration look like the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.

Nothing makes me prouder as an American than knowing we’ve co-opted a word used to describe this abomination everywhere else in the world – football – to describe the violent ground-acquisition game that’s become our national pastime. Football is just so deliciously imperialistic, no wonder Americans love it. We’re going to drive deep into your territory and score. We’re going to take this pigskin and cram it down your throat. A fifth of the people on Earth just ran away screaming, having taken that football euphemism literally.

Then there’s the hilarious irony that football players who are actually permitted to kick the ball are pretty much the least athletic, least respected guys on the team. The only kicking Americans want to see on a field is a defensive tackle kicking the crap out of the opposing team’s quarterback or cheerleaders high-kicking on the sideline between concussion rendering collisions. And maybe the Kilgore Rangerettes.

So while billions around the globe are perched on the edge of their seats most Americans won’t even be aware of who’s on Team USA, much less the outcome of their games. Which is a bummer for them because they’ve worked hard to get to the World Cup. But just like a Code Pink protester vis-a-vis the Iraq war we don’t care how much they’ve sacrificed or who wins and loses, we just want it to be over so we can get on with our regularly scheduled programming.

On the plus side, they don’t have to worry about deranged fans murdering them if they make a costly mistake during game.

It would be pudding grade awesome if Team USA did win the World Cup for the simple reason it would appall the rest of the world. And of course Americans still wouldn’t give a hoot in hell. I can just see the newscasts now…”In sports news, Team USA shocked the world by bringing home the World Cup…more on that later but now let’s go live to Newy Scruggs who’s got an update about the ongoing contract negotiations between the New England Patriots and quarterback Tom Brady.”

Still, I may have to tune in for a few minutes anyway. There’s nothing more compelling than watching a grown man crumple to the ground like he’s been lobotomized when an opposing defenseman comes down on him like a butterfly with sore feet.

World Cup 2010 – More boring than baseball and with less scoring too. Catch the fever!

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