The Five Billion Person Party

Notes of a wandering American soccer fan

Archive for the ‘Soccer bars’ Category

The douche soccer fan, American style

Posted by steigs on September 15, 2008

Deadspin’s weekly EPL post today sparked an amusing “let me tell you about the douche fan at our soccer bar” binge in the comments.  Makes me feel better about the crowd at Summers, that’s for sure.  Deadspin:

I’ve got a theory about watching soccer in large groups (and what it lacks in nuance it more than makes up for in infallibility): The biggest douche in the crowd is always a Manchester United fan. Always. Saturday was no exception. It’s pretty easy to hold up when United is playing, but even in the crowded bar the grand prize winner stuck out like a hetero on Project Runway (what, don’t pretend like you don’t watch it).

Wannabe old school United jersey? Check. Popped Collar? Check. Gel-spiked hair? Check. Nothing with both self-respect and a y-chromosome should ever put effort into looking like that but again, local time, this was before 7 am on a Saturday. I was happy to have pants on at that hour. Who is giving up sleep to groom themselves? And to what end? It’s the world’s most useless gesture. Attendance rates by women for 7 am soccer starts are lower than those at NAMBLA meetings. Even before he opened his mouth, the guy was a tool.

Then he opened his mouth. Before kick he was singing “You’ll Never Win A League.” Three or four times. Nobody joined in. Then it was “When Johnny Goes Marching Down the Wing.” Also multiple times. Also without anyone jumping in. The latter is a song about Man U’s John O’Shea. He didn’t march down the wing. He never got off the fucking bench. Have I mentioned it’s early? Everyone who’s not drinking is hung over. Is it too much to ask if you’re going to be an annoying prick to at least sing something relevant?

Three minutes in United went up 1-0 and it could have been 2-0 as the ref might have missed a hand ball in the box. At this point it looked like the Red Devils might be in a walkover, 4-0 or maybe 5-0. Manchester McSingy breaks out the “You’re Not Singing” song. Leave it to the fucking English to sing a song about other people not singing. You really needed our help? You couldn’t have just irritated Hitler into submission?

From the Comments:

“Wannabe old school United jersey? Check. Popped Collar? Check. Gel-spiked hair? Check.”

It’s nice that Beckham supports his old team, but what the hell was he doing in Austin?

I, too, was at a Fado (in Philadelphia), and of course the most vocal/obnoxious person in attendance was an alleged United supporter. Only this glory-hunting frontrunner was an obese, bespectacled, bad-tattooed woman with a dodgy replica jersey (Who is “Gigs”?) and a never-ending supply of terrace songs. Once the final whistle blew, and we Liverpool fans started giving her and her cronies some shit, her argument was that, as Americans, we were all phonies and not real fans. A Man Utd supporter said this.

Gigs? Seriously? The worst we have at my bar is this woman who comes alone in a Rooney jersey, shouts in a Madonna-ish fake British accent cheering for United, and attempts to join our table on a weekly basis. We have to avoid eye contact or else she comes right over. Aggravating.

Yeah, we have a whole slew of fake-accent-adopting fans at my bar, as well. I guess some people really want to recreate a terrace environment, though it doesn’t really work when it’s 730am and no one else is singing. Perhaps when the dollar gets stronger, these idiots can just pony up the dough for a trip to Old Trafford.

The bar I was at for the CL final had no less than 10 United Douches. But the Chelsea douches made themselves more visible, including the one that got in a fight with the Sheva shirt that had the name and number taken off, I hear hes happy with his Robinho shirt though.

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Where everyone knows your game

Posted by steigs on January 27, 2008

One of the many treats of Deadspin are the weekly updates from David Hirshey “the closer” and rather enthusiastic Arsenal fan.  His tales of the Kinsale Tavern in NYC on weekend mornings watching the EPL are always good for a laugh or two as well as a knowing nod.  Maybe they even give the mainstream Deadspin readers a taste for the beautiful game. 

You know, when he makes comments like these:

Kickoff for what the British papers were hyping as Grand Slam Sunday, because it involved The Big Four of ManU, Liverpool, Arsenal and Chelsea and was at 8:30 — or to put it another way, three and a half hours before any alcohol could be served at the bar.  Imagine how frustrating it must have been to have a sweating beer tap a few tantalizing inches in front of you and realizing that if you reached over and yanked on it before NOON, you’d pull away a bloody stump. Yet all the deprivations of sleep and alcohol would have been worth it if the soccer on view hadn’t been so godawful.

Could there have been a more pathetic looking figure among the Kinsale mob than RZM? Even the shmuck at the end of the bar in a throwback Csonka jersey who tried to watch that other football game in London yesterday could at least delude himself that his 0-8 team once had a proud history. Poor RZM had nothing other than his pint of Guinness and the look of a man who had endured a double colonoscopy.

When I walked into Kinsale Tavern on Saturday morning at 8 a.m., the proprietor Pauline had the kind but concerned look of someone about to engage in an intervention. My initial thought was that she had caught wind of my insane plan for a 15-hour footy-watching drunkathlon and had decided it was a cry for help.

My version of the Kinsale is Summers, in Arlington, Virginia, just across the Potomac from DC.  I’ve been going there for about a decade now.  It’s a sports bar, sure, but it’s really that rarer gem in the U.S. — a soccer bar.  A place where soccerheads like me can gather where everyone knows the game. 

So here’s a tribute to Summers I wrote when I was living overseas… Read the rest of this entry »

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