July 20, 2006

Commentary on Zidane's gesture by Dany Laferrière: In the old, bloody fables of the Brothers Grimm, it was acceptable to have a red card ending. But today, in this strange epoch when everyone seems to have drunk Disney milk in their infancy, no one tolerates anything but rosy endings. Everything must finish happily. Our heroes must be loveable so that we can file them away in the cupboard of our happy memories. So where does that leave Zidane?
Young rappers will surely introduce into their video clips the eight seconds where Zidane left the game to re-enter their stifling reality.

A whole different take on the Zidane incident...

posted by fabulon7 to soccer at 02:44 PM - 70 comments

I think that article is more right than all the ridiculous hand-wringing and decrying of the incident, and the plaintivness of the "say it ain't so, Zizou" crowd I have been reading since. It seems we're all so medicated that we can't enjoy or appreciate a good spontaneous, man-to-man violent outburst when we see one, on world-wide television. With all due respect to matteo and his fellow lovers of the Azzuri on MeFi and SpoFi, as well as the elegant defense played by Cannavaro throughout the tournament, here's what I think happened: Zidane had just missed a golden opportunity to take the lead in overtime when Buffon somewhat miraculously stopped his point blank header. After that, tired, angry shoulder hurting from earlier, he realized that the game was destined to go to penalties, where the chance for victory is about the same as a coin toss. So this guy Materazzi (and this other guy Gattuso) had been hacking him, taunting him and shoving him for 100+ minutes. Hell, they'd been doing that for most of his career at Juventus and Real as well as at the international level. So, he thought, this is my one last chance to take a crack at one of these trash talking, diving Azzuri bastards, and if I get sent off, who cares? The game will be decided in penalties anyway, so I'm not hurting my team. It will put an exclamation point at the end of my career. Ca y est, c'est tout. Non?

posted by psmealey at 04:15 PM on July 20

I admit to being one of those who could not understand Zidane's actions when it happened, but after reading this piece, I think I now understand. I think Zidane now sleeps better at night, knowing he ended his career on his terms. Excellent post, thank you.

posted by bobrolloff at 04:51 PM on July 20

Here's another great article on a new film about Zidane. The filmmakers shot him with 17 cameras during a Real Madrid match against Villareal in 2005. At the end of it, Zidane is red carded for taking part in a mass brawl. Incredibly prescient, with parts of an interview with him on Algeria, racism and growing up in Marseilles. And am I the only person in the world who thinks the shot of Zidane walking down the tunnel past the World Cup trophy is one of the greatest single television sporting images ever?

posted by owlhouse at 05:23 PM on July 20

great post, i d like to read the entire blog, it is en francais, so if anyone can find it in anglaise, pleas pass it on, ty. i wish materazzi would admit to what he'd said during the game, or it comes out sometime soon from 'sources' at the field level. I know it is not against the rules to trash talk, but I think it was totally classless and unsportsmanlike on the part of the italians, who will now have the brand of DIVERS and GUTLESS, play like real sportsmen or dont play at all. i had wished zz would have waited until the final whistle and then knocked the asshole to the ground, but , the path he chose was more valiant, sticking up for himself and family rises above all, even country in this grand tournament. hats off to zz for taking this stand and shame on the cheap italian players

posted by sauceysays at 05:30 PM on July 20

I'm confused as to why racism is a key word to this article, seeing as both Zidane and Materazzi assured the FIFA panel that racism played no part in the incident.

posted by squealy at 06:41 PM on July 20

Both players today confirmed that Materazzi's comments were not racist and Materazzi maintains that he did not say anything "racist, relgious or political" and that he said "nothing about [Zidane's] mother." If a headbutt was the general answer to trash talk, then a lot of sports, from cricket to basketball to hurling would end up with no one left on the field, the last two having headbutted each other. The idea that the Italians are the only trashtalkers in the final, let alone in the world cup is farcical. Meanwhile, I'd love to believe Smealey's version of events. That would be awesome. Also, I agree with Owlhouse, that the shots of M. Zidane passing M. Rimet's trophy were excellent.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 06:43 PM on July 20

I wonder if he would've been so cavalier in his walk past the trophy if he hadn't already won one in '98.

posted by smithers at 08:03 PM on July 20

A lot of you missed the boat. Zidane went out showing his true colors. He has always been a thug, no matter how skilled. Not professional enough to take a trash talking. If he was such a tough guy and a man he should have had some composure and confronted Materazzi after the game. Instead he took a cheap shot, which he knew would not be returned. Lets be realistic, if Zizou would have waited until after the game to confront Materazzi he would have gotten his ass kicked. He took the cowards way out.

posted by urall cloolis at 08:26 PM on July 20

Read the link, Professor Plum. The author's opinion isn't too far from what you said, that he showed his true colors by being true to himself rather than someone else's idea of him. No idea if it's true, but isn't it pretty to think so?

posted by yerfatma at 08:43 PM on July 20

Let's not start this tired bullshit monday morning quarterbacking thing all over again (he's a coward! no you're a coward! I'm not a towel, you're a towel!). It was just an interesting perspective is all. I have (and still do) played the game for a long, long time... though not quite at the international level. Shit happens out there, and it pisses you off. Some guys can keep their shit together about it, some can't and still others wait for the right moment to pop someone. That's pretty much all I'm saying. Thank you, good night.

posted by psmealey at 09:51 PM on July 20

I've seen it all ... Zidane cracked plan and simple. Recall the anger he showed on the field when Buffon somehow miraculously blocked Zidane's "winning" header. That was a great hard cross and beautiful hard header. How the Italian goaly got a hand on it is a testament to his skill and some luck. The perfect Zidane hero ending was swatted up and over the net and stolen by Buffon. I believe Zidane knew he wouldn't get a 2nd chance and his anger exploded when Materazzi trash talked him. The pro collapsed...lost his composure and in many ways the match as the French team deflated with him. IMHO

posted by chiocchi at 10:27 PM on July 20

Instead he took a cheap shot, Cheap shot? They were facing each other and Materazzi saw it coming with enough time to embelish. It was a freaking head butt to the freaking chest, not a left hook to the temple from behind. As far as link, it was a very interesting point of view. I never thought of the situation that way. It kind of reminds me of JJ's column on Bode. Anyway, he was exhausted, and the team could do without him. But if Zidane was as good a player as they say, couldn't he have made a difference in the penalty kicks?

posted by MrFrisby at 11:20 PM on July 20

We may never find out what it was that Matterazzi said to Zidane to incur the headbutt, but, there will always be a cloud of "what-if's" hanging over the Italian victory. The Italian team should discipline Matterazzi for diminishing their win and for taking away the world's attention from the true hero of their game-- Buffon. I am more of a fan of the Brazilian players, but what Zidane did made me admire him enough to look more closely into his career history. pssmealy, you are right. Zidane did wait for the right moment to pop someone.

posted by quark at 12:46 AM on July 21

You admire Zidane for acting like a petty thug? That's pretty fucking sad! I don't give a shit what his justification for it was. Unless someone said to him at half time "Headbutt an Italian or we kill your family", there was just no justification for it, and the sport is better off without the violent little twat. I have no time AT ALL for violence in any arena that doesn't involve a ring of some kind. The fact that folk seem to be sympathetic to Zidane is just another example of how fucked society is. He acted like a thug by solving a problem with violence. Yeah, just what the world needs, more assholes like that... If you condone his actions, where do you draw the line? Sucker punches? Bringing a flick knife in your shorts and stabbing someone? How big of a blade is too big? As for Matterazzi, he's a scummy wanker too from what I've seen of him since, but two wrongs don't make a right.

posted by Drood at 01:13 AM on July 21

Wow, Drood, for a screed taking a zero-tolerance stand against violence, what you said was pretty motherfucking violent. I didn't realize anyone in this thread was condoning what Zidane did. I thought the poster and the writer of the linked story were just trying to understand it a little better. Zidane is clearly not a stupid man, though he may have done a very stupid thing. Perhaps if we turn the story over a little bit, we might understand what, if anything, he was thinking at the time, and we might understand a little better what makes people turn suddenly violent, be it on the football pitch, or, oh, a dozen or so comments into a discussion thread on a sports site somewhere. Just as a frinstance. And then we can maybe understand what makes people angry and rush so fast to judge other people based on ten seconds of tape played over and over again, and we might learn enough about ourselves and the people around us to take a step away from being so fucking angry that we start seeing people as occasionally complicated beings, instead of "thugs," "wankers" and "scumbags." But really, you're right. Society is fucked. So fucked, in fact, there's sometimes nothing to do but give those fuckers who get on your last nerve a good shot in the solar plexus, eh?

posted by chicobangs at 02:27 AM on July 21

Some talk about how Zizou stepped up and defended his family. What about the other 10 French players he should have stood up for as captain of his team? Some of those already held the Jules Rimet, but there are certainly many who didn't get that chance in '98. Ribery certainly deserved better after his fantastic play. I am a huge fan of his and want so badly to see this other side of things, but I can't help wonder would Zidane have taken that penalty in Trezeguets' stead? Would he have been able to fashion some kind of fantastic goal before penalties? I know there are a lot of what ifs' here, but I feel just as cheated as many others.

posted by Ricardo at 03:21 AM on July 21

The fact that folk seem to be sympathetic to Zidane is just another example of how fucked society is. I think what's going on in Iraq and Lebanon, and the seeming powerless of any group of people to stop it, is a bigger example of how fucked society is. Whether or not you think he's an idiot, or are angry that people are supporting him, Zidane was acting on his own behalf.

posted by psmealey at 04:47 AM on July 21

You admire Zidane for acting like a petty thug? That's pretty fucking sad! Is this addressed to me? If so, nice try on reframing my argument. I don't admire anyone for acting like a petty thug; I do admire people for standing up for themselves and doing what they feel is right in spite of obvious, painful consequences. In that kind of situation, I'm more than happy to condone a headbutt. Maybe I watched too many Westerns as a kid.

posted by yerfatma at 06:22 AM on July 21

The idea that the Italians are the only trashtalkers in the final, let alone in the world cup is farcical. Thank you Mr. Bismarck. We may never find out what it was that Matterazzi said to Zidane to incur the headbutt, but, there will always be a cloud of "what-if's" hanging over the Italian victory. Because it was just Zidane vs. Materazzi on the field, right? Italy dominated the first half, France the second.It could have gone either way.

posted by romakimmy at 07:18 AM on July 21

Frisby - I didn't really see why you'd be reminded of what I wrote about Bode, so I went and read it again and now I see what you mean (ironically, I think Imight have been drunk when I wrote it). Having broken my fair share of golf clubs in fits of rage, and even once come to blows (with my partner, not my opponent) on the course, I find it easier to relate to someone who loses their temper than someone who can block it all out. The incident humanised him, and that's no bad thing.

posted by JJ at 07:22 AM on July 21

I have read the article Chucklehead- My opinion does differ in the way the act was percieved. You and the author seem to think it was a corageous act, while I see it for what it was- a cowardly way out. By your logic Mike Tyson is a hero for biting off Evander Holyfields ear because "he was being true to himself". Does Osama Bin Laden become a hero in your eyes then for "being true to himself" no matter how he treats the rest of the world? Lets face it, he stomped a Saudi player, headbutts a German and an Italian, yet he is misunderstood and a gentleman. Call it what it is - he was a very skilled player and a pathetic human being.

posted by urall cloolis at 07:26 AM on July 21

To all those calling Zidane a scumbag, pathetic human being, etc., I think the fact that he didn't injure Materazzi (or even try to) is something to consider. He didn't suckerpunch him, kick him in the head, elbow him in the face, try to break his ankle with a tackle, or anything like that. He headbutted Materzzi in the chest. A headbut to the chest hurts and knocks you down, but it's not likely to cause injury. It's more embarassing than anything. Maybe he did it because his shoulder was still all f'ed up and he couldn't shove Materazzi like he wanted to. In any case, it was bad, and he deserved to get kicked out of the game, but it hardly makes him a monster. And this whole business about the diving, gutless, crybaby Italians that keeps popping up smells like sour grapes, or maybe even a little like racism. I'm not sure which, but in either case -- knock it off. I'm not sure I agree with the article, but it's definitely an interesting take on the situation.

posted by fabulon7 at 07:45 AM on July 21

SpoFi - where Zinedine Zidane = Bin Laden.

posted by squealy at 08:41 AM on July 21

Nice link fabby - I think this kind of thinking has it's place and is warranted. I can't say that I feel nearly as passionate about this stuff as some of you. I think clearly Zidane snapped, like Rooney did. I think the headbutt to the chest thing is pretty comical, though. No one got hurt, the game was obviously going to penalties (every last player was wiped out) and Zidane should have been there. But did it mean the difference between assured victory and total defeat? Not from what I'm beginning to understand about futbol. Actually I thought Zidane's calm demeanor while patiently waiting for his red card was just as interesting. Total acknowledgement from him. No arguing or screaming. Materazzi said whatever he said, Zidane responded and then politely left the game. I don't think it works when we examine this from a North American Pro Sports lens. Not that you can't have an opinion about it, but maybe the situation doesn't apply as much to those sports that we are more familiar with.

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 08:48 AM on July 21

In any case, it was bad, and he deserved to get kicked out of the game, but it hardly makes him a monster. I agree, but it doesn't make him heroic either. The article is acting like headbutting an Italian during the World Cup for trash talk is a long-suppressed political statement. It is searching for an excuse about what he might have been thinking. More likely, he wasn't thinking at all and was acting under a fit of temper. The article's critique of Disneyfying the incident and trying to give it a happy ending is what he ends doing as well.

posted by bperk at 08:49 AM on July 21

I'm taking a break from debating people who are incapable of doing so. Show up with some punctuation and some logic and then hit me with a good shot right in the chest. Conflation of ZZ and OBL != a cogent argument.

posted by yerfatma at 09:04 AM on July 21

The article's critique of Disneyfying the incident and trying to give it a happy ending is what he ends doing as well. Yeah -- I thought that was pretty funny.

posted by fabulon7 at 09:09 AM on July 21

Doesn't matter what Materazzi said, unless it was actually racist (and both players denied that in the hearing), professional footballers will use any edge they can to wind up opponents and goad them into a sending off. There isn't a player in the world who hasn't used a bit of verbal in this way. The fact that Zidane reacted with violence is no surprise. He's trampled players and headbutted them in the face before in his career, and he's no stranger to the red card. The funniest thing about this whole incident is the people who obviously don't follow football who had evidently not realised what kind of a player he can be ... sublime one moment and vicious the next.

posted by walrus at 01:19 PM on July 21

Hey psmealey, you want to see some spontaneous man-to-man, woman-to-woman or child-to-child violent ouburst, come to the South Bronx, Fort Apache, etc. You'll see the REAL violent outburst. See how much you ENJOY that.

posted by joromu at 01:34 PM on July 21

Awesome, I'll bring popcorn.

posted by psmealey at 01:55 PM on July 21

The sad thing about the incident for me is the precedent FIFA have set with regard to punishing Materazzi and being lenient on Zidane. Expect lots of players trying to mitigate their violent actions and get other players punished by arguing that they were verbally provoked. FIFA have introduced a whole new level of cheating with this and the ramifications will further damage the sport.

posted by walrus at 02:04 PM on July 21

You think we're about to see a sharp increase in the number of off the ball cheap shots as a result of this, walrus. Unfortunately, like trash talking and diving, that is also part of the game. I think this sort of thing is self policed, for the most part. I wouldn't expect to see more of it as a result of this decision.

posted by psmealey at 02:18 PM on July 21

sublime one moment and vicious the next. Now hold up, I may not know shit from Shinola about football, but I'd like to go one record saying I like those kinds of players in general. It's not ignorance that makes Zidane appealing to me, it's poor breeding.

posted by yerfatma at 02:26 PM on July 21

sublime one moment and vicious the next. I resemble that remark. ...cause lovin' is what I got... ...cause I, I wanna be, anarchy...

posted by MrFrisby at 02:31 PM on July 21

I'm not disputing that verbal abuse and violence are common in football psmealey. I'm lamenting the elevation of the first to the level of the second.

posted by walrus at 02:46 PM on July 21

you want to see some spontaneous man-to-man, woman-to-woman or child-to-child violent ouburst, come to the South Bronx, Fort Apache, etc. What if I'd like to see some woman-and-kid-to-man violent outbursts? Can they cross over? 'Cause that would rock! Actually, the Bronx isn't as tough as it used to be, homie. This and this were a long, long time ago.

posted by The_Black_Hand at 03:36 PM on July 21

Oddly enough, my older sister went to Fordham, and I have visited friends many times over the years in Throgs Neck and Hunts Point. This Red Sox fan knows that particular boro pretty well, and no, it's not as bad as reputed, though there are definitely some areas that are on the sketchy side.

posted by psmealey at 04:02 PM on July 21

Zidane will never be considered one of the greats in my eyes for one reason. He disrespected the game I love in front of the biggest audience ever for a sporting event. A player that does not respect the game will never get my respect or admiration.

posted by urall cloolis at 06:20 PM on July 21

Zidane is not doubt devastated by that judgment, urall. I know that you put a lot of thought and consideration into that decision, and he'll just have to live with it. I just hope he doesn't do anything rash.

posted by psmealey at 08:11 PM on July 21

I think a player should always put his team first but when that fails, get your money's worth. Zidane didn't disrespect anything other than the two square feet Materazzi was taking up. I just wish Zizou's aim was about 6 inches higher and he gave Marco a real reason to flop. All this candy-assed talk of Zidane being a coward or a petty thug is just that: candy-assed. Has anyone writing this ever played the game? It's very rare to find a player from anywhere in the world who, having played a considerable number of years, hasn't done something on the pitch they regret deeply. OK, Zidane did it in his final game on the biggest stage of all and let down his teammates and every other Frenchman going back to the days of Gaul. For me, that just makes him human. A man with faults. Someone with a temper, like all of us. Out like a lion...

posted by Texan_lost_in_NY at 09:23 PM on July 21

If Zidane was a kid, then no big deal, maybe a learning experience. Zidane is well over 30 years old and should have learned his lessons through his mistakes. Instead he repeated them in the lowest form on the biggest stage. FYI- I was a collegiate all-american and former professional player who respects the game and plays it the right way. I made my mistakes and learned from them, not repeated them.

posted by urall cloolis at 09:40 PM on July 21

Congratulations. Your blue star is in the mail. And from your purported playing-days claim, it's easy to see from this and other postings, you don't know dick about this game. Weren't you paying attention, Jimmy?

posted by Texan_lost_in_NY at 09:49 PM on July 21

If any of you have ever played the game you know exactly what Materazzi said. I didn't need a lip reader. He called ZZ a Mutherfukker. When ZZ lost his cool he hid behind it like a crutch. Oh he insulted my dying mother and said that I love to have wild sex with her. Anyone who has ever uttered the phrase- and you all have- know that you never implied that the person actually has carnal knowledge with his mother. Stop making excuses. First racist, then personal, then about his mom. Get a grip and act like a man and take your lumps. Italy won- get over it and STFU.

posted by urall cloolis at 09:51 PM on July 21

Hey Texan- I will pay for your plane fare to DC to play you in a decathalon of sports. You pick five and I pick five. If we are tied, the breaker is soccer PKs. We will play for money and a lot of it. Are you in? If not Shut the fuk up with the personal attacks.

posted by urall cloolis at 09:54 PM on July 21

FYI- I was a collegiate all-american and former professional player who respects the game and plays it the right way. FYTS, I am Lazerus, come back from the dead, come back to tell you all. The answers are 42.5, "e-x-a-c-e-r-b-a-t-e" and "Regardless of your claimed history, you're just another faceless opinion, poorly stated".

posted by yerfatma at 09:55 PM on July 21

Are you in? If not Shut the fuk up with the personal attacks. If he's not, I'm you're huckleberry, you D2 loudmouth. Send me a ticket.

posted by yerfatma at 09:56 PM on July 21

I don't give a ****what his justification for it was I don't believe physical violence on the soccer field is justifiable, but I am curious as to the reasons behind it. Verbal abuse and taunting are even lower blows. In this age when many of the plays are scrutinized more by the television cameras than by the referee, I've seen a lot of deliberate violence on the soccer field. Which act is more despicable-- setting out to disable an opposing player and making it appear unintentional or openly head-butting one in response to a verbal slight? I would say the former. The arena of the mind does have a ring and the violence it spawns oozes out in words and plots that would evoke retaliation.

posted by quark at 09:58 PM on July 21

I agree that intentionally injuring someone is way beyond the line. I have had my knees operated on as a result. That is when you should break out the violence, not when someone talks trash. There are more subtle ways to get the point across. You can wait for the next header and "accidentally" throw an elbow or something that will not severely injure or maim or draw considerable attention to yourself. Maybe throw your body into an opponent before the ball gets there, initiate some serious contact. But off the ball is for beginners. If the foul or talk is serious enough. you take it to the tunnell, the locker room or the parking lot after the game ends.

posted by urall cloolis at 10:13 PM on July 21

Hey Doc...where do I send the ticket. Lets discuss the details if you are in. Remember how that story ended, dying in a pile of his own blood and sickness.

posted by urall cloolis at 10:14 PM on July 21

You can wait for the next header and "accidentally" throw an elbow or something that will not severely injure or maim or draw considerable attention to yourself. Oh well, that's fucking class, isn't it? So your objection isn't to those who commit egregious acts, it's to those who get caught. Or hit you. Hey Doc...where do I send the ticket. Is that for moi? My email is in my profile.

posted by yerfatma at 10:17 PM on July 21

Lets see DeRossi elbow to head during match gets 4 game ban. Materazzi 2 game ban for talking trash. Zidane only gets 3 "symbolic" game ban due to intentional off the ball headbutt. FIFA needs to take a serious look at itself. Any fan of this game will stay a fan. New fans will not come from USA, the games were slow. The winners always stalled the game. Too many players needing stretchers but no ambulances. Too many cards. Too much violence. Too many dives. The list goes on. If I was new to the sport I would think it is ridiculous. The whole Cup was disgraceful, even though my beloved Azzurri won.

posted by urall cloolis at 10:22 PM on July 21

New fans will not come from USA, the games were slow. The winners always stalled the game. Too many players needing stretchers but no ambulances. Too many cards. Too much violence. Too many dives. The list goes on. If I was new to the sport I would think it is ridiculous. The whole Cup was disgraceful, even though my beloved Azzurri won. Ah, now we get it. In sum: 1. You, unlike new US soccer fans, are smarter than the average jock strap in the US. And drive a foreign car because they're safe. 2. Your objection to ZZ is basically that he was playing against Italy. 3. My ticket's in the mail. 4. Your deodorant is Parmesan cheese.

posted by yerfatma at 10:28 PM on July 21

You are a racist yerfatma- plain and simple. Your above post leaves no doubt.

posted by urall cloolis at 10:37 PM on July 21

The original Zidane "excuse" was that he was called a terrorist. Racist? Maybe a stretch...but your above post was the same. Show some class no matter how much you may dislike me. I have never attacked your heritage, nor would I. Now I see why you take his side...are you French and racist or just a racist?

posted by urall cloolis at 10:40 PM on July 21

No, "racist" implies you are some sort of human being. Still waiting on the ticket. Hope it's on a plane that flies and not a train that runs on time.

posted by yerfatma at 10:44 PM on July 21

you have mail Doc.

posted by urall cloolis at 11:06 PM on July 21

I see that, but I still don't have a degree in the mail. Does this mean I can operate on folks? More than I have been?

posted by yerfatma at 11:14 PM on July 21

Sorry that I am not a "human being". I should have had my parents ask you first whether to bear an Italian-American child. Wow, and Zidane snapped on less than that...I like my restraint.

posted by urall cloolis at 11:57 PM on July 21

Yerfatma- Unless an apology is granted (does not have to be in public) I will post our email exchange tomorrow. I know you would prefer for that not to be public domain. You were very racist toward me in your email and I do not blame you for not wanting to take me up on the "decathalon of sports" that I issued to someone else and you dived right into. You called me out, then retreated after I offered the plane ticket. Explain to the masses please, if you can try to sugarcoat it. I was going to leave it alone until the racist comments and the bragging about your size and staure (not impressive) in your last email. Ever heard the phrase- "Its not the size of the dog in the fight but the size of the fight in the dog." See ya later Chicken Little.

posted by urall cloolis at 12:35 AM on July 22

Well that was entertaining.

posted by walrus at 01:29 AM on July 22

By the way, when Zidane called Jorge Larrionda a "son of a bitch" during the semi-final, was he insulting his mother, and would the ref have been justified in headbutting him? I think we should be told.

posted by walrus at 02:38 AM on July 22

This thread turned out to be much more entertaining than even the Pat Tillman shit fight the next aisle over. Walrus, unless Zidane was speaking English to Larrionda, he probably called him a "son of a whore" ("fils de putain"/"hijo de puta"). So based on the logic extending from the Materazzi incident, the ref would have been justified in head-butting Zizou. Now, that would have been shocking, and hilarious. Turnabout is fair play, even FIFA must agree. Also, ethnic slurs used among people of European descent are definitely objectionable, and way out of bounds, but they aren't racist. At least not in the way that term was being used here.

posted by psmealey at 08:20 AM on July 22

Yeah, urall, I'm sorry for consistently taking the low road whenever an onramp presented itself in a discussion that should have been about sports. Sorry for making it personal.

posted by yerfatma at 09:39 AM on July 22

*waits for urall to gracefully accept yerfatma's apology so she can hang the "THIS PISSING CONTEST IS OVER" sign on the thread*

posted by romakimmy at 10:30 AM on July 22

No more golden showers, please.

posted by forrestv at 10:43 AM on July 22

Well, that was fun. So, cloolis, your solution to my assertion that you know fuck all about this game is to have a competition, Superstars-style? The more you write, the more obvious it becomes that the vanity mirror was out when you brainstormed and came up with your snappy SpoFi user name. Well done. And being as yerfatma looks so spiffy in his Spurs top, I'll let him take my place in the tug-of-war. Just be sure to get the whole thing on tape so we can see him chop your knees in the 30 yard hurdles.

posted by Texan_lost_in_NY at 01:05 PM on July 22

My apologies to the board and we're cool yerfatma. I got a bit too carried away. My bad. Hopefully I will learn from that mistake.

posted by urall cloolis at 07:59 PM on July 22

Pretty sure you didn't make one, but that's cool.

posted by yerfatma at 08:58 PM on July 22

I guess that's the end of this thread unless urall and yerfatma are actually pushing through with their one-on-one and will deign to share the results with us. It would be interesting to know what the author of the original commentary thinks of this board.

posted by quark at 02:52 AM on July 23

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