Monday, May 29, 2006

World Cup Fervor

I've never been one to care about professional sports of any kind. In fact, I often feel like people who invest so much time and energy in them are lame-o. I do like the excitement of a live game but that's mostly thanks to nacho chips, screaming fans, and big screens.

I have to admit I've caught the fever!!! Be the reds, reds go together, win a victory!!! In 2002 Korea and Japan hosted the World Cup and Korea did much better than anticipated. From what I've seen the country went absolutely crazy with national pride and love the game that has continued on strong until now - only days before the kick off in Germany of World Cup 2006. Suji's streets are lined with soccer ball shaped flower planters.

On Friday night as D'Arcy and I ate ramyeon in the bus station there was a regular season game on between Korea and Bosnia. Every single restaurant, shop, and sitting area had a television tuned to the game. Korea scored the first goal and the bus station went wild. It gives a girl chills, I tell ya.

This entire weekend we couldn't go an hour without hearing one of a few constantly played "Go Korea" songs. Ohhh, pisa Korea!!(I know, I know it's not pisa but I forget what it really is), Taehanminguk bang bang bang bang bang, Champion something something. Every single person in Korea, young or old, can sing these songs. The election campaigners driving by in their open Karaoke trucks (don't ask...) are using it to their advantage as well.

On the four hour bus ride home from Gyeongju to Seoul I watched re-run footage of Friday night's game as well as player highlights, reports from Germany, and I don't know what else 'cause it was all in Korean. Go Korea!

Some may find this kind of unity or nationalism creepy but I love it. It's nothing like home when a few cars of highschool boys honk by my Thornhill house when the Leafs score a goal. Every single clothing store has made it's own red t-shirts cheering on the team and everybody seems to own at least one. I have two (and a bandanna courtesy of my student).

I want to go to a place full of fans to watch a game sometime. Any suggestions from those in the know? Maybe Suwon Stadium...

Let the games begin!!!


At May 29, 2006 7:09 p.m. , Blogger Waddell said...

Hello Jess!

I am the guy who emailed you a few months back with some Korea questions while I was still job-hunting. Myself and my girlfriend still check in with your blog as it's consistently entertaining. Luckily, we picked a nice contract and have been loving Korea since the start of March. Anyway, just to say thanks for your advice, and if you fancy checking out my own blog its at . All the best, Chris.

At May 30, 2006 3:06 a.m. , Blogger Rachel Lynn said...

It's so easy to get into the Be the Reds fever! I find myself getting carried away after just watching the game on tv.


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