This is not a novel or unusual opinion, but I’m not really enjoying this World Cup much because of the combination of bad officiating and my terminal impatience with the diving and histrionics, especially when said dives are rewarded by bad officiating. I would freely cop to this reaction being partly a result of a local ideology of masculinity, that I find it greviously unmanly to see male athletes clutching their shins like five-year olds and bawling their eyes out, especially when said athletes come miraculously back to life as soon as it is seemly to do so. It’s also a vague feeling that global athletics are somehow even more filthy in their corruption than local athletics, Barry Bonds et al notwithstanding. I can think of a lot of baseball umps I’ve thought were chumps over the years, but not many where I thought the guy might be on the take in some fashion.
However, the Brazil v. France game was the single game so far that I’ve thoroughly enjoyed, even with a couple of dubious yellow cardings. It was a much more exciting game in every respect than almost any other. More of that…please.