Friday, June 16, 2006

Well. What a week it has been.

On Tuesday the health department came into Birgit's classroom and informed her that 1) one of her fifth graders has the measles, 2) the whole class will now be tested and must wait at home for the results, 3) all teachers with contact to the kid have to do the same, 4) by "at home" they mean "in your house and nowhere else" and 5) the results won't be available until Monday. So Birgit is my prisoner! Tuesday afternoon the doorbell rang and she opened up. Two women with information material and whatnot came up the stairs and said "Oh! We're glad to find you at home!" Birgit figured they were from the health department, checking up on her, so she was cool. Then they said "We have really just one question: Do you believe in Jeebus?" HA!

I seem to be on my own recognizance, despite the fact that if B has it then I probably do to: the health authorities didn't ask if I had been immunized [I have].

And now, your World Cupdate:

I had to work Monday, so I missed Australia's surprise win over Japan (3-1, incorrectly predicted the other way around by me) and the US getting drubbed by the Czechs (3-0, ditto). A word on the Czech win: they were without their #1 striker, and the US has Casey the Killer Keller anchoring what I thought was a solid defense. I figured it was reasonable for the US to score a freak goal and then close down for a win. Ahem.

After the train delays got sorted out and I took a detour train through Essen, I met up with some friends in time for the second half of the Italy-Ghana game (2-0). My understanding is that the first half was really fun to watch, but I thought the second half was pretty good, too. Ghana looks like a really good team except for in one fundamental aspect: they seem averse to being anywhere close to the opponent's goal before shooting. I mean, they were shooting from 50 yards out! And STILL going over the goal! They were often closer on corner kicks, for crying out loud. I joked that they should have stayed home and shot from there, for all the good it was doing.

South Korea 2 versus Togo 1 (KOREA TEAM FIGHTING back from 0-1 against a Togo team whose coach quit last week, then rejoined them a day or so before this game! I picked Koreateam, and I was working while the game was being played)

France 0 versus Switzerland 0 (wrong again, Greg, and working again)

Brazil 1 versus Croatia 0 (correct!). I saw this game down at my corner bar and had the bittersweet experience of watching a BORING Brazil team. Listless? Dude, they were playing the harpsichord! I wouldn't be surprised if the Aussies or Japannies slap that smile off their faces, but I am honor bound not to change my predictions.

Spain 4(!!!) versus Ukraine 0(!!!). I got that one hella rong. Due to fortuitous cancellations, I was able to watch this on the big screen in the public viewing area in Dortmund. Dude. Spain looks awesome all of a sudden. Be afraid.

Saudi Arabia and Tunisia kissed their sisters*. I didn't watch. I picked Tunisia.

Germany 1 versus Poland 0. I was there, in front of the big screen, surrounded by many thousands of Poles and Germans. Awesome atmosphere, awesome game. A bit of
unpleasantness on the fringes (the biggest part of that happened around 50-100 yards from me, by the way, and I didn't notice), but cool. I was there with Holger. Our friend Annette wanted into the area, too, but by the time she got there it was full and she was stuck outside of it. Then some Polish fans, in frustration, started smashing beer bottles (as one does). Annette thought quickly and allowed a piece of glass to skip off the pavement and gash her calf. This meant she needed medical attention and so was allowed in. Genius!
Hazel was there with guests from the Engalond, and afterwards we went out on the town a bit. Got home just before dawn.

Ecuador 3 versus Costa Rica 0 (wrong of me): Ecuador may have something. Germany should be able to handle them but who knows? I watched on TV at home. So tired. So very tired.

The Engalond 2 versus Soca Warriors 0 (right of me): Crouch pulled the Trini defenders pony tail when he went up for that header. He is now on my shit list. The Engalond suck donkey balls. TV. House. Tired.

Sweden 1 versus Paraguay 0 (right of me): not much to report here. I now want Sweden to beat the piss out of the Engalond, but I fear they would have a hard time beating the piss out of a big bag of piss. TV. House. Tired. Drifted off a couple of times.

What will today bring us? Argentina will beat Serbia in Gelsenkirchen, the Netherlands will beat the Ivory Coast (I wish I hadn't predicted that) in Stuttgart, and your 2006 World Champion Mexico will defeat Angola in Hanover. I will be hooking up with some Mexicans, I think, for that one.

If you look at this post you will see my overall first round Cup predictions in tatters.

* Paul "Bear" Bryant, legendary coach of the University of Alabama Crimson Tide football team, is alleged to have said that a tie is like kissing your sister: it feels ok, but it doesn't mean much.


At 11:42 AM, Blogger Daniel Franklin Gomez said...

Germany deserved the win against Poland. Fortune has certainly favored the brave. Need to beat Ecuador to ensure a top group finish.

At 11:52 AM, Blogger Greg said...

Yeah. I have been pretty pleased with how Germany has played. I am starting think that something about Ballack's presence holds them back from scoring, though. They seem to score more when he's out (1-0 Poland with him, 4-2 Costa Rica without him, 3-0 Colombia with him, 7-0 Luxembourg without, and so on. Probably just coincidence, though).

Neuville, however, has always interested me. Glad to see him score. And Odonkor is the shit.


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