I confess.

1 Jul

No one, I mean NO ONE (not even you, P8, or you, Wu) *really* believed that the USMNT would win …

would win ANYTHING, let alone the actual World Cup.

I mean, we were placed in the “death group,” for chrissakes! Surely we would not advance.

I wanted to believe, but I didn’t reallyΒ believe — and, admit it, neither did you.

So from the get-go, I hedged my bets: As long as the U.S. was “in it,” I would root for them — but since they clearly were fated to get wiped out in Round 1, I oughta pick a team behind which I could place all of my emotional energy.

I don’t really follow soccer/futbol, so my selection boiled down to the thing that always matters most to me:

Food.

I dunno know who’s got the best offense / defense / coaching / prospects, etc. but I DO know who’s got the undisputed BEST FOOD TO EAT IN A BAR:

BELGIUM.

Hands down. No question.

Beer. Frites. Waffles. Mussels. Beer. Beer. Beer.

Belgium wins every time.

So, for the 2014 FIFA World Cup, I put my faith in Belgium.

I would very happily spend HOURS cheering for Belgium throughout the entire World Cup experience because I knew that doing so would allow me virtually unlimited access to world-class beer and mind-blowing mayo-frites.

Belgium wins!

In fact, to date, all of my out-in-public Cup watching has centered around Belgium’s matches. I “followed” the U.S., and absolutely rooted for them — but I did so from my desktop / mobile tracker. Until today. USA v. BEL. I was shocked, horrified, and heartbroken when the fates decided to pit the US against Belgium for today’s match.

Who would I root for?! My belly said Belgium, my heart said America, and my brain …. well, we all know that my brain is Β broken, so it doesn’t really get a say in anything. So I flipped a coin. Heads = heart / tails = belly.

Heads it was. GO, USA!

I ordered my sliders (which never came because the service at Busby’s blew — thank goodness for my ever-present bike-food provisions … Endurobites saved the day!) and cheered like a red-white-and-blue muthafucka (as my bar-mates can attest). My heart experienced even more attacks that Tim Howard did on his goal. Alas, neither Tim nor I were able to pull out a miracle.

The heart was broken … and yet, at the same time so very full. Tim Howard personifies every virtue Americans believe in: grit, determination, resilience, fortitude, belief.

I believe. I believe. I believe.

I believe in beer.

Tim Howard and the entire USMNT, you did us more than proud: You were awesome. You raised our hopes and filled or hearts and united our focus (albeit for a brief time, before we devolve back into debate over the latest SCOTUS debacle…). We raise a glass to you, and that glass is filled with Belgian beer, because — let’s face it, Belgian beer is undeniably world class / awesome and so are you.

I’ll cheers to that!

 

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