Someone asked me how my blog and newspaper column came to be titled "Bleachers Brew". It's like this, it's an amalgam of sorts of two things: The bleachers area in the stadium/arena where I used to sit when I would watch baseball, football, and basketball games and Miles Davis' great jazz album Bitches Brew. That's how it got culled together. I originally planned on calling it "The View from the Big Chair" that is a nod to Tears For Fear's second album, Songs from the Big Chair. So there.

Friday, June 25, 2010

A toast, a cheer, a song, and a groan.

The other night while watching the World Cup games at Gweilos in Eastwood the atmosphere was electric. In one table you had three French dudes, in another three American chicks, in another there were three Mexicans (what’s with these trios anyway), then in one table a Brit (finally!) with a couple of Pinoys.

Most of the patrons cheered for the USA and when Landon Donovan scored the winning goal the whole place erupted! Some pounded on the tables with their fists while others chanted “USA! USA!” A couple next to me toasted beer bottles (Heineken if you want to know what brand) while another shook their heads (they root for England and an American win meant the Yanks won their group).

The Americans stood up and sang “Star Spangled Banner.” I smiled, raised my glass, and said, “To Captain America (Landon Donovan)!” I downed my San Mig Light and wished that the Azkals would one day make the FIFA World Cup. It’s not being sarcastic but a dream.

When Switzerland upset Spain, there was only one guy inside the bar who openly cheered for the Swiss. And when they scored he just stood up, pointed at the screen and yelled his head off. Many of us had our hands on our heads with mouths agape.

I could watch the matches at home but it really is more fun in a bar with other passionate fans who groan, chew fingernails, and holler and groan some more with missed shots and close calls.

Me? I’m more active when Team USA or the Les Bleus are on. So you can be sure how dour and surly I was with every French misfire and controversy.

The great thing about this World Cup is the upsets and the turned tables. The officiating is one of the most horrible and I can only pray that the fix this unless some stupid ref wrecks the finals.

It’s Portugal and Brazil later. Hope it gets crazy in Eastwood.

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