Confessions of a Frustrated World Cup Fan

PHILADELPHIA - SEPTEMBER 26:  Sean Sams (C) walks as he provides directions to telemarketers during the last telemarketing shift at Spectrum Marketing Services, Inc. September 26, 2003 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Spectrum Marketing Services, Inc., which had been in business since 1974, and as of January 2003 employed 125 people, was forced to close it's doors due to the Do Not Call Registry.  (Photo by William Thomas Cain/Getty Images)

Raise your hand if you live in these great United States, you work full time Monday-Friday, or close to it, and you’re a passionate football fan and love the World Cup with every fiber of your being?

If you’re anything like me, your hand is probably (frustratingly) raised high in the air because of your inability to experience the World Cup live in all it’s beauty during your 9-5. When the weekend comes, temporary freedom is restored into your life and your sense of purpose is redeemed. But for 5 straight days, all the numerous ways one can follow the competition, whether it’s mobile, online or the myriad of official iPhone applications, become simply useless and meaningless as your DVR fills it’s belly of footie while the clock tics away at the office.

In the days leading up to BWC (before World Cup), you’d check your iPhone, twitter or your favorite Internet site every 15 minutes in your attempt to keep up with every tidbit of news and analysis concerning your country, chosen country or the World Cup in general.

Now you sit in your dingy cubicle as another day of torture comes your way. In your mind, you try not to visualize Portugal’s opening match or how the Italians will defend their title. You reach for your phone to check twitter just once before work ends knowing the matches await you at the end of your commute. You hesitate as you fully realize that the 15-20 journalists you follow will have ruined the score for you making the matches seemingly irrelevant upon your arrival home thus destroying your evening of HD football on TV.

This feeling of anxiety is only equaled by the excuse you know you’ll have to come up with in order to miss work on Friday when both the United States and England resume group play with everything on the line. There’s no way you’re missing that day of matches. A stomach virus, a fever, a cold? What will your boss most likely accept? Does he or she think you’re flaking out to watch the World Cup? Decisions to make, actions to ponder, priorities to rank,…

Stuck at work during the World Cup, you plan your entire day, hell, your entire week around the three matches on offer each day. “How can I most effectively make this happen and still enjoy the Cup the way it was meant to be enjoyed“, you strategically think to yourself. The answer is simple and to the point. You wait. You patiently wait until the seconds turn to minutes, the minutes into hours and the hours into a full day. You rush home and flip on the 7am match knowing that you’ve made it, you’ve don’t it again, you’ve successfully avoided all scores and everything slowly comes into place.

You know your patience has paid off when the voice of Martin Tyler, Ian Darke or Derek Rae pierce your ears like angels singing your name. The incessant drone of the vuvuzela is now music to your ears because you realize all is right in the world. You likely spend the next 5-6 hours in a state of World Cup drunkenness until your heavy eyes force retirement from couch to bed. When you wake up the next day with formations, tactics and player analysis running, no sprinting through your head, that sinking feeling you get in your stomach only goes to prove you’ve now to do it all over again.

Such is the day to day activities you experience and will continue to experience for the next three+ weeks. Unless you have enough vacation or paid time off available, which most of us don’t, your dull days at the office and on the job will just have to continue as the World Cup matches become your daily holy grail.


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