Thursday, February 23, 2006

A little about football in argentina

Here are some things that I have noted about Argentina Futbol. It's a little bit of what you should expect should you goto a futbol game in Argentina.

The Argentine puts the fan into fanatic!
The standard equipment for a game includes
  • Bass Drums
  • Loud Drums
  • More Loud Drums
  • Anything that will make noise
  • Old modified bike pumps that can wreak havoc on your ear drums
  • Some flares, maybe some smoke bombs with your team colors
  • Streamers with your team colors
  • Large flags with your team colors and seal
  • A teenager willing to climb on the outside portion the nosebleeder section fence. (the fence is supposed to protect people from falling and this kid is on the outside and will fall and die should he lose his grip)
  • Facepaint...gotta have that.
  • chants for your team
    • Dále Dále Dále Dále Boca!
    • Vamos Vamos Vamos Vamos Riverplate!
  • Offensive Chants directed at the other team, the officials, their families, their wives, their girls, whatever & whoever.
    • Policía Policía
    • Que armargado sé te ve
    • Cuando vos a la cancha
    • Su mujer se va a coger!!!!!!
    • //This roughly translates into "Police Police. How bitter you I know you look, when you go to the stadium your ladytype goes to fornicate."
  • Fireworks! They search you before you go into the game, take away your lighter - - but fireworks are perfectly fine.
  • Gigantic flags that can cover an entire section of the stadium
  • Alcohol is not sold because the fans are rowdy enough as it is
  • Prepare yourself for nonstop cheering and jeering
  • Lots and lots of jumping around. So much so that the stadium actually shakes when you are in the nosebleed section.
  • Vulgar comments (especially from the women)
  • Lots of mullets and guys who would be better off with their shirts on
  • Fanatics that criticize the police from a very safe distance (tommy toughguys) - - - why dont they say that stuff when the police are right in front of them...some things never change, no matter where you are.
  • Fans who whistle to show their disgust of the other team
  • Boca Jrs are like the Yankees - you either love em or hate em. There are no tweeners.
  • Lots of arm waiving. Its kinda like the Atlanta Braves chop, but with both arms in more of a narrow half-oval swooping motion with the whole arm while chanting the team anthem.
Both River Plate and Boca are unique experiences. The first soccer game that I saw in Argentina was River Plate versus Orient Petrolio (a Bolivian team). I drove by the stadium when I first came to BA and now I got to go inside. I signed up with my hostel, the cost was a little more but they provided the transportation and a little peace of mind. I sat with an Aussie on the way there. He was a nice guy, just kinda dim. We had that sort of conversation that went kinda like this..."So, how long have you been traveling?" "Five months." "You from America, right?" "Yea." "Didja vote for Bush" "Yup." "Hey I saw you with that girl the other night...didja get some." "A man never asks and a gentleman never tells." The conversation really never got off the ground.

We initially thought that our ticket would get us into the stadium quickly so we wouldnt hafta wait in the long queue. The police kinda looked at our group of 30 and was like "ummm, you gotta wait like everybody else." Not good. Game time was 20 minutes away and the waiting line stretched over 100 meters around the entrance. It was so long that it actually stretched onto the blocked highway exit ramp and onto the shoulder of the unblocked-highway. Not the place you wanna be hangin around when its dusk. Or anytime. Finally the hostel connections paid off, we walked from the end of the queue on the freeway to the front door and they let us in.

The hostel connection got us in the door. That was it. We took our seats in the nosebleeders. There really were no seats any higher or farther away. It looked like little PlayMobile figures were kicking the ball around. Foosball players have appeared larger. But we got in and soaked in the energy of the stadium. That was lots of fun. River Plate put on a clinic that night. The Orient Petrolio fellas got smoked. 7-0. When three goals were scored in the first 15 minutes you had a pretty good idea who was gonna win this one. The first goal five minutes into the game send the crowd into a frenzy. The GA section a little ways away looked like a sea of boiling red water. Hands up in the air, flags waving, everybody screaming, stadium shaking. The second, third, fourth, fifth, sixth, and seventh goal were all met with just a little less enthusiasm - but still quite a lot.

Coupla folks in our row took the liberty of lighting up and getting high. All I got out of the experience was a second-hand headache. One stoner really got me mad because he was getting high in front of his four-year old daughter. WTF are you doing that when you need to be providing for your daughter, idiot.

A blowout isnt so much fun to watch. It got so boring that I began to time the intervals between the planes that were landing at the nearby airport. The game was over and the fans were happy. I got up from my seat and noticed a little kitten that was underneath my seat. Got a foto of that.

Got back to the hostel and started to tell all the Aussies they get to drink free today since it was Australian Day. Just show them your passport and you get a free Quilmes. Some people actually believed me.

The Boca Game.
I went with my friend Mariana to a Boca Jrs game last Sunday. I got off my cruise ship at 2pm, deposited my stuff at the hostel and took the hostel's bus to the stadium. I napped on the bus ride there because I got about three hours of sleep that night. I was burnin up the dance floor at Sahara and was kinda worn out. What better way to recover than to sit in the hot sun and the humid BA air. Anywho, Boca Jrs. play at La Bombonera and security is pretty thorough. We passed through three security checkpoints. Three cops patted me down to check for whatever. Then an undercover police officer (or so he says) patted me down. He was a really nice guy...very generous, he even offered to rub my shoulders. I started to get the feeling that he really wasnt a police officer. When I asked him for ID he showed me his was in crayon. hmmmmmm.

As much as the tix are for Boca Jrs. games they should invest some money into the actual stadium. The bowels of the stadium we went through to get to our seats smelled like, well, someones bowels.

Boca Jrs. have cheerleaders! Helloooooooo Ladies! Now thats what im talkin about! Me thinks that these ladytypes were hired on their looks and prolly not for their cheerleading capabilities. Midget rodeo clown strippers slash cheerleaders could prolly impart some of their knowledge to these ladytypes about cheerleading. They were that bad.

The energy in the stadium woke me up because I was nappin in the summer heat. The fans here dont mess around. They say whatever is on their minds about the other team and its funny to hear these chants. Stuff you would never say to another person are repeted frequently by men and women of all ages. And its fun! The game became interesting really really fast. Two of San Lorenzo's players and two of Boca's players received yellow cards within the first ten minutes. An then there was a penalty kick because one of the Boca boys was a little too aggressive going for the ball in the Boca goalie box. San Lorenzo brought in their goalie to kick the shot. He hammered the ball into the upper corner for the game's first goal. The tiny San Lorenzo section went wild. Then the SL goalie did a no-no and started to taunt the Boca fans. The goalie recieved a yellow card for those little actions.

Our nosebleeders gave us a great view of the action. We were right behind the goal with the sun at our backs. Boca fans do not forget. The second half brought the San Lorezo goalie back to the same area where he initially taunted the Boca fans. The goalie was greeted with a five minute waterbottle barrage along with whatever else the fans had at their disposal. That's whatcha get. It took the captain of the Boca team to walk with the goalie back to the goal. El Cap-e-tan gave the palms-down dual-basketball dribbling motion to calm the fans down.

Boca couldnt get their act together the entire game. Then San Lorenzo scored again. Out came the waterbottles and whatever else the fans could throw onto the field. The wind was out of Boca's sails. When Boca scored in the final minutes the energy surged and Boca fans' confidence and boisterousness returned. The stadium actually was moving when Boca fans got really really excited. I have never been to any stadium where the concrete actually shakes and sways underneth you. Incredible. But it was too little and too late for the Boca Jrs. The game was over and the fans left. One thing that is different here than in America is the way the stadium is exited. The opposing teams fans first leave, then the GA seats on the opposite side of the stadium are cleared, the rich folks in their part can leave whenever. The police arent too worried about these folks. The stadium emptying goes back and forth until everybody leaves.

South Americans are very passionate about their soccer and let everybody know about their team. They are involved. Both matches were great experiences.

After the game it was time to rest. Three hours of sleep, sitting and sweating in the sun, wearing clothes that had only been washed in my cabin sink left me pretty tired and stinky. I went back to the hostel and rested the rest of the night. A good end to a long day.


Mariano said...

¡Vamos, vamos los xeneizes,
vamos xeneizes vamos a ganar,
somos la mitad más uno,
somos el pueblo y el carnaval,
Boca te llevo en el alma
y cada día te quiero más!


¡Señores hoy dejo todo, me voy a ver a Boca,
porque los jugadores me van a demostrar
que salen a ganar, quieren salir campeón,
que lo llevan adentro como lo llevo yo!

Todos los momentos que viví,
todas las canchas donde te seguí,
aprendí a llevarte en el alma,
Boca Juniors de mi vida,
vos me hiciste muy feliz.
Las gallinas siempre van
para la cancha con la Federal,
vamos a quemar el gallinero,
a matarles el tercero,
y la vuelta vamo' a dar.
Boca vos sos mi vida,
vos sos la pasión,
sólo te pido una cosa,
¡que salgás otra vez campeón!

rafal said...

nice bear there grizzly