My brother and sister both play, and have for years. I have sat through my share of sunburn, wind, and soccer moms, and I have gone to very few of their games, in reality. Soccer is just inefficient, from my perspective. Sure feet are great for kicking a ball down a field, but let’s be honest, maybe the reason they NEVER score is because they just need to pick the ball up already and use a part of the body designed for greater accuracy.
All misunderstanding of soccer aside, when I heard we were getting tickets to watch a game here, I was PUMPED, which is arguably my natural state of being. The Barcelona v. Emelec game started at 8:00, so naturally we left the hotel at 5:00.
In the 2.5 hours before the game started, I learned a lot about it takes to be a futbol fan. Here are some friendly tips from my experience tonight:
1. Inflatable noise makers are your friend.
2. Newspaper confetti is invaluable, and is for everyone.
3. Out of all 20,000+ people, don’t sit behind the guys with the banner.
4. Don’t buy the water or expect toilet paper.
5. There is a hymn book full of songs about Emelec. Have them all memorized and ready to go.
6. Loud is good.
Lastly, if there is a chance of not winning, celebrate as if victory was achieved BEFORE the game starts. This is crucial. Confetti, balloons, receipt tape, yelling: bring it all. Hey, if the players slip on the confetti all over the field, it’s just added entertainment, right? From this little fiesta, we watched the beginning of the game through a net of balloons, newspaper, and people standing where they easily could have sat.
I watched half of the first half of the game. “The first or second?” you may ask. “No,” I say unto you. “The left half.” Those people just WOULD NOT sit down. The second half, I stood until we left ten minutes before the game ended.
Barcelona won, 1-0, but the way I see it is that it’s OK, because we already partied like it was the end of the world. And, for your own good, if you know an Emelec fan, don’t tell them it’s not.
Much love and weariness,