I don’t know about you but I’ve been flattened since our glorious World Cup came to an earth-shakingly climactic end on Sunday night. Pap. It feels like somebody I really loved has died. No exaggeration. I haven’t blogged in two days. I don’t know what to say. I don’t know what to write.
I’m messed up. I’m in mooch mode. I’ve thought about picking up on “Isidingo”. Picking up Leeanda Reddy. Melancholic. I catch myself staring into the fire and seeing Asamoah Gyan hitting the bar with that penalty miss against Uruguay. I’m off my food. My hair needs washing. No shampoo. No sham, it’s just poo. It’s like Gen Morton called and said she doesn’t want to see me again. Again.
I don’t really know what to do. Macrame? The washing-up? Steal some kid’s Panini World Cup sticker book and try to finish it? And then give it back to him? Or sell it to buy new clothes so that I don’t have to do last week’s laundry? I do know that I need to let go of World Cup 2010. I do. You too? Perhaps this will help…
Did you pick up all the little gems in that? The beautiful words and unmistakeable voice of The Arch effusing in his inimitable way at the opening ceremony? “This is like a dream… I must be dreaming!” Yes, Arch, it was like a dream… a dream come true. And we don’t want to wake up!
And there were a lot of vuvuzelas in tthat vid, right? Vuvuzelas, kuduzelas, favelazelas, madikazelas, madethismyselfazelas. The horniest World Cup of all time, Hatpeople. A month of sex in B-flat. No wonder we’re pap. You might even have seen yourself in there. Did you catch the beautifully loony London Mayor Boris Johnson putting out his best parp at around 4:15″? Best you have another look and listen, hey?
I have nothing else to say except to thank Peter Greenwall for creating this authentic slice of his World Cup experience and sending it my way. So I didn’t have to think of anything to write. Cheers, mate. OK, I’m off to make a fire. The Scrapster and Dodney Doodlebug are shivering on the mat. And I’m shaking. Cold turkey.
Oh, and one more thing… do that 67-minute thing for Madiba and your phenomenal country on Sunday, OK? I’m going to help some guys get a vegetable garden going on a vacant plot in the middle of Stanford so that the poorer souls can be fed some nutritious food. Go on, do your bit. Get yourself tested “SA-positive”!
I woke up this morning to the biting cold of a Stanford winter’s day. Alone. And suffering a deep depression.
I needed help. Group therapy sounded good. And I got it. From the vastly swollen ranks of the “SA-positive” people out there who are as hungover as me. On this day after the drunken month before.
So, how to describe how I feel? I can’t. I’m leaving it to you. These are the pick-me-up messages which came my way on facebook and Twitter today… I’ll throw in some pretty pictures just to – how do newspaper journalists say? – “break up the copy”…
Bravo Espana, bravo. the Grand Parade fanfest, filled to capacity with 25000 people was a SA experience i will NEVER forget as long as I live. People crying together, dancing, hugging, never before seen such unity amongst strangers and classes, creeds, colours and ages.
Trust a Ghanaian fan to succeed where Paris Hilton failed. Nobody bothered this bloke when he brought his pot into the stadium.
Dear SAFA – time to put your money where our youth developmental programme should be. How about PSL season to start with a youth league?
We did it South Africa. Thank you world for sharing our beautiful country.
Well done. Somehow, we must all soldier on. And we got our taste of rugby last night with the Dutch team. Sjoe!
The Netherlands' Nigel de Jong, who was later sent off, impresses upon Xabi Alonso of Spain that he didn't miss a single Bruce Lee movie as a kid
SA so in love with the vuvuzela that we name a newly discovered flower after it… iafrica.com
Spain has won the #worldcup of Football, but SA has won the World Cup of nation-building, social cohesion, national unity, pride & branding!
There’s always the Tri-Nations and Currie Cup to tide us over till the Premiership starts…
The football fans are taking lots of Vuvuzelas home #ORTambo #Joburg
Sorry, I'm not sure how this slipped in. The iPhone, I mean.
South Africa: On top of the world. Photo gallery… Times Live
South Africa proved it – the potential is high and the spirit of the people is strong. A metaphor for all of Africa?
South Africa #WorldCup stats ~ Attendance 3,178,856 (49,670 per match) Goals scored 145 ~ Wikipedia
Well done Spain – the best-looking team won the tournament. Well done South Africa – the best hosts won over the world.
The Spanish team seem quite happy to get their hands on the World Cup trophy... after some nutter had earlier run on the field to try to nick it. A Fifa heavy took him out with an almighty forearm smash to save the day. And he wasn't even Dutch.
I’m going to miss buying beers in the street and posing for photo’s with the police in front of Caspirs. Thank you South Africa, as if I needed a reason to love you more.
If the ref had picked up the foul on Robben, I think we’d have a different World Cup winner today! Well done to Spain, though, and to everyone involved in making the World Cup such a great success. I think we can all be extremely proud of the way South Africa rose to the challenge and made those doubting thomases, myself included, eat humble pie! Thanks for a fantastic tournament!!
Just watched all the morning news shows say good bye to the WC. I shed a tear.
The ever-popular Diego Forlan didn't shed a tear when Uruguay didn't make the final. He got so pissed off that he came along anyway, bringing a World Cup trophy his mum made for him back in Montevideo.
M sure s0uth africa are the best h0sts eva yho! even when 0ur teamz wer d0wn nd 0ut ppl still went 2 the stadiumz i salute u SOUTH AFRICA!
Well done, my country! We hosted the biggest sporting event in the world and EVERYBODY thinks it has been the best so far! I can’t wait for the next challenge cos we proved to ourselves that Yes, We Can!
Wow, South Africa, aren’t you proud ? Gosh that was beautiful, I must say, new South African history is written, forget june 16, together we wrote june 11 and it left a smile on all our faces, long live south africa!
Not trusting Eskom, quite a few fans brought their torches along for the closing ceremony at Soccer City last night.
There cannot be a single aficionado (not even in the Netherlands) who will dispute the cosmic justness of Spain’s win. They were better on the day, and they have been better than any team in the world for the last year or two. More than that, they play irrefutable football, football that fathers can watch with their children, football that is cerebral, clean-limbed, dignified, balletic, and immensely loveable—that last because they are not a team of physical giants, but are instead (for the most part) dapper men of modest proportions who wouldn’t draw a second glance if they were alongside one in the subway.”
And this from a Spanish guy… SOUTH AFRICA!!!!!!! A BIG CONGRATULATION TO THE BEST HOST NATION IN HISTORY!!!!! YOU DID AN EXCELLENT JOB AND BRING THE WORLD TOGETHER!!!!! THIS IS YOUR TIME TO SHINE THE WORLD AND YOU DID IT !!!!! AWESOME JOB!!!!!! NOW THE OLYMPICS IS GOING TO 2020!!! AWESOME WC2010!
I think Miguel enjoyed himself. And didn’t we all? Never again will those foreign predictors of doom – and our own naysayers – disrespect us. Yes, we are South AfriCAN.
We hoped he would turn up for one last hurrah. And, as always, Mr Mandela didn't let us down. Madiba, have we told you recently how much we love you?
Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m going back to bed. I’ve got to try to shift this hangover…
Note to neighbour: Would you mind terribly, old chap, not blowing the old vuvu just for the rest of today? Ta.
To me, it matters not a jot whether the man who is given global football’s golden statuette on Sunday is wearing orange or red.
The real winner of this remarkable World Cup tournament is South Africa. And every South African.
I am no politician. No economist. I’m not much of a social analyst. But my “SA-positive” instinct tells me that, whether you found a job or not, whether your B&B filled up or sat empty or whether or not your company increased its profit over the past month, this beautiful thing has vastly enhanced all of our lives.
From the phenomenal opening ceremony at Soccer City on June 11, this World Cup really cooked!
I wrote long before the first ball was kicked on June 11 that the really tangible benefits of the 2010 World Cup would only be felt by our country in years to come. Millions of foreigners with significant disposable income will have had the scales fall from their eyes as their television sets and other media constantly told the story of the safety and sophistication with which our fledgling democracy has hosted this tournament. And they will have, from their lounges in Milan, Montreal, Manchester, Montevideo and Madrid, felt the “Ayoba vibe” that has danced its way around South Africa in the past few weeks.
For them, South Africa will have become a viable long-haul destination for a holiday, a place of warmth, friendliness and indomitable human spirit. We have become a country with which to do business. South Africa is the business. We have grabbed the opportunity to show the world what we are truly made of. And, just 16 years since the awful legacy of apartheid began to drain away, South Africa has finally grown up. We demand to be taken seriously. We can do just about anything any so-called First World country can do and, what’s more, we will do it a uniquely spirited way which can only enrich the human condition.
All South Africans united as one beautiful nation under the Rainbow flag
In the year that I have been writing the “only medically diagnosed SA-positive blog”, I have locked horns with the naysayers who refused to believe that South Africa could pull this off. That we could host a safe World Cup. That we could stage a successful World Cup. Stuck within the limitations of their fear, their distrust of an ANC government reeking of corruption, the unacceptably high level of crime, they saw the new stadiums rise as symbols of new doom and disaster. They steadfastly refused to break free of the shackles of their post-apartheid victimhood and see the bigger picture.
A week before the World Cup began, I was savouring my afternoon coffee at the Art Cafe in my newly-adopted village of Stanford in the Western Cape when an elderly woman opposite me let out a groan. I looked up to see her look up from her morning newspaper, a pained expression contorting her face. “I wish this damn World Cup was over,” she whined, “so that we can get back to our lives.”
I decided to remain quiet as there seemed little point in trying to win over yet another doom-monger. “What do you think?” she asked. I told her. At length. In detail. She blinked. Her top lip quivered uncontrollably. And then she put up an argument, rooted in the comfort zone of her dedication to making herself as small and shrivelled-up as possible in the face of a country that “was going to the dogs”. After we had agreed to disagree, I suggested that she might herself be caught up in the tsunami of goodwill and high spiritedness that was about to envelop South Africa. No sooner had the ball pinged off the left foot of Bafana Bafana’s Siphiwe Tshabalala to open the scoring in the very first match against Mexico and she was.
No sooner had Siphiwe Tshabalala buried the ball in the Mexico net and the South African naysayers were rushing off to buy vuvuzelas and mirror socks
I have so many anecdotes of naysayers and don’t-give-a-damners seduced by the beautiful vibe that has permeated World Cup South Africa but space precludes me from telling them. Suffice to say that there is a new positivity which abounds in the psyche of South Africans. The long-cherished spirit of “ubuntu” (communal togetherness) has turned from a trickle to a torrent as inter-racial distrust has washed away under the wanton waving of our Rainbow flag.
From the pre-World Cup day that the Afrikaner volk which lives, breathes and eats the Pretoria-based Bulls rugby franchise charted unknown territory by going into Soweto to watch their heroes play a Super 14 semi-final at Orlando Pirates’ home ground and ended up enjoying a “moerse jol” (one hell of a party) with the locals to the ongoing feelgood fandango that is this World Cup, South Africa has reached out across hitherto impassable divides to claim its future.
An entire continent will benefit from South Africa's successful staging of the 2010 World Cup
There is no doubt that this future is littered with challenges. It would be one-eyed of me to dismiss the chaos of Wednesday night when fans were late for or missed the Spain v Germany semi-final in Durban because of the gross unpreparedness of Acsa (Airports Company of South Africa) for the number of planes flying into the spanking-new state-of-the-art King Shaka Airport. And it would be remiss to ignore disturbing reports of a possible resurfacing of the xenophobia which tore through South Africa’s shantytowns in 2008.
Yes, there will be many obstacles to overcome. But if there’s one country I would back to find a way of overcoming these challenges, it is South Africa. We have made it our national sport to bounce back from adversity. The overwhelming success of this World Cup only serves to remind us that South Africans are an extraordinary bunch. An extraordinary bunch blessed to live in an extraordinary country. The beloved country. I am so proud of my “SA-positive” status.
I’ve always been an “SA-positive” South African. Especially since 1994 and that small matter of us becoming a democracy. But this most stunningly beautiful of all World Cups has the bell at the top of my Positiv-o-meter clanging like Oprah Winfrey running wild and loose in the Durban Philharmonic Orchestra’s brass section.
I want to have a word in the shell-like (ear) of the editor of London’s Daily Star, a rag for which South Africa as host country of the world’s premier football competition was total anathema. A gutter-press tabloid which trotted out every potential disaster it could think of as reason why a World Cup in our chaotic, useless cadaver of a country at the southern tip of parlous Africa would fail.
Then I would take him into a padded cell, truss him up in some seriously heavy-duty rope, hold a blowtorch close to his left big toe and firmly tweak his lying nose every time he blinked. No, I’m not all that happy with him.
Um. Where was I? Oh, yes. I was at the Fifa Fan Fest on Durban’s beachfront for Brazil vs Portugal last Friday afternoon. I want to run you through that a bit, if I may.
First, the huge area cordoned off for fans to watch the match on a ginormous screen happened to be almost entirely comprised of warm, golden sand. Beach bliss. The weather, as is typical of Durban in mid-winter, was warm, even sultry. Everything was fantastically well organised and I didn’t have to wait long to get my hands on a boerie roll (boerewors roll, a kind of hotdog but only way better).
Most people wore shorts with their vuvuzelas and were impeccably behaved despite many drinking vast quantities of beer. It was a blast and only Brazil v Portugal, neither having to try too hard to qualify for the final round, let the side down.
Oh, I’ve got a couple of pics to portray the general vibe of the elated throng enjoying the beach party while watching a bit of World Cup football. Here we go…
Thousands had a jol (party) as the match played out on the giant screen. Nice.
And nobody enjoyed it more than The Popsicle, who made sure she had the best view of all the action
It's not all bad watching World Cup football on warm sand just a handful of metres from the Indian Ocean
I made a new friend in Luyanda (2) who was dead cool in his outsized spectacles. All pix: Marcelle Delew-Kappen
All in all, not an entirely shabby afternoon/evening. I thought I coped quite well with it. No problems, a beautiful vibe. South African ubuntu (togetherness) at its very best. Well done to Durban’s Fan Fest. Wait. I’ll go further than that. Well done, South Africa. And I mean all of you. All of you “SA-positive” people who have embraced this World Cup and offered the traditional warm hand of friendship to our foreign guests.
You are all beautiful. So wonderful that I’m going to give you the rest of the week off work. Just tell your boss that I said so. Just do it. He’ll understand. You deserve it.
I feared the worst when World Cup 2010 Local Organising Committee head honcho Danny Jordaan said that vuvuzelas would only be banned at this World Cup if they were thrown on to the field of play or used in an irresponsible fashion.
There goes our vuvu, I thought. All it takes is one plonker to chuck a vuvu – hopefully well aimed – at Cristiano Ronaldo and the big beef will be confiscating them off us at the gate quicker than you can say “Paaaaaarp”.
But all has been well. Because all South Africans, and most of the foreign visitors who have embraced this friendliest and most peaceable of World Cups, don’t want anything to spoil the world’s most massive party of the year.
But, it agonises me to say, we have found that one plonker. One German idiot who got drunk, got upset at a policeman who was trying to direct traffic around the football crowd and then attacked the cop with a vuvuzela, reportedly “seriously injuring” him.
Schweinhund! Not ideal. Take a young German (you could easily replace that with Englishman, of course), bucketloads of beer and a long, plastic trumpet (ie. vuvuzela) and our entire enjoyment of this, the most flawlessly beautiful of all World Cups, is put at risk.
Dear World Cup visitors, please note... the correct way to enjoy yourselves with our vuvuzela. Thank you.
But wait. Where did this dumbkopf carry out his vuvu violence? It pleases me to say that terrible trumpet travesty took place north of Duisburg in Germany, not anywhere in our well-chilled South Africa with its almost zen-like World Cup “hosts with the mostest” party vibe.
A newsbreak by Bleacher Report reads… “As German fans in Dinslaken, north of Duisburg, made their way home after Die Mannschaft’s victory over Ghana on Wednesday, one pissed-up supporter began taunting a police officer directing traffic around the crowd. The police report reads:
“As he turned to the 20-year-old, the man suddenly began hitting and kicking the officer. Furthermore he began pounding the officer’s head with a vuvuzela.”
Bystander accounts claim it took three people to take the vuvuzela-wielding wildman down, while the police officer has been officially declared unfit for duty due to ’severe [head] injuries’ and, we suspect, the shame of being tamed by a plastic horn.’ ”
Not lekker (nice). But due to the Germanness, nay, North Europeanness of this incident, let us hope that it remains isolated to that region of the planet. Any more of this disgraceful behaviour and I, the most ardently “SA-positive” supporter of this 2010 World Cup, will demand that the perpetrator be brought to my padded cell here at Hatman Mansions and summarily dealt with. I think that I may have thought of another use, which suggests itself as most suitable punishment, for our vuvuzela!
OK. Now get back to blowing up at storm as we continue with this insanely gorgeous World Cup!
My dear Hatpeople, may I have the privilege of introducing you to writer Helen Walne. I am even more of a fan of Helen’s left-field writing style than I am of Simphiwe Tshabalala’s left-wing artistry. And that’s saying a lot. Here, in a guest post for fredhatman.co.za, Helen insists that, regardless of how beautiful our World Cup might become, she is to remain unmoved. Please stop blowing your vuvuzelas for a minute and enjoy this…
Two weeks into this World Cup and I am proud to announce that I haven’t fallen for it. Amid the vuvuzelas, the soccer pizzas, the side-mirror willy warmers and the flags, I have remained as unmoved as a parliamentarian with a mandatory gym contract, as a 4X4 enthusiast at an instant lawn demonstration or as Posh Spice at a laughing yoga convention. You get the picture.
Indeed, being unaffected by hype has always been one of my more admirable qualities. When everyone at school huddled on the steps watching their slinkies coil and uncoil their way down to the bottom field, I bit into my egg sandwich and admired my collection of eucalyptus leaves. When the other kids dashed into a flutter of flying ants, squealing and chewing, declaring that they tasted like peanut butter, I went inside and drew pictures of dwarves. And when Knight Rider came to the Southgate Shopping Centre to sign autographs next to the Biltong Den, I refused to go.
So when it comes to resisting a silly ball game, it’s a piece of cake. Besides, I haven’t been interested in soccer since Dean de Beer played goalie for the under-15 Maritzburg Lions. He wasn’t the sparkiest boy on the bus, but he had a nice mole on his cheek. Anyway, according to the wisdom of Colour Me Beautiful, I’m a summer and look bad in yellow – like a jaundiced custard slice, or Homer Simpson after too much vindaloo. And I refuse to be brainwashed by advertising.
Besides tampons, cable ties and haemorroid cream, I don’t think there’s a single item that hasn’t been given a World Cup spin. From crisps and koejawels to soap and sosaties, the advertising Beelzebubs have positively dived, sprung, vaulted and jumped on the bandwagon. Last week, even our work canteen was flogging a Wayne Rooney chicken-something, and I’m almost sure our local tearoom is selling Bafana nasal sprays.
And I wouldn’t be surprised if, over the course of the past year, we haven’t been subjected to subliminal World Cup advertising. Maybe that nice couple with the Bible who came round last week were actually secret soccer agents, burning messages into my brain with their eyes: Thou shalt wear yellow. Thou shalt paarp those plastic trumpets. Thou shalt bow down before the beautiful game. And perhaps the bitterness of the soup I ate last night was not due to a batch of dodgy lentils, but a clutch of evil Fifafia pellets designed to turn me into a polyester-wearing freak. And right now, it wouldn’t be unreasonable to believe that with every flap of their wings, the clutch of hadedas clattering overhead is disseminating subliminal pay-off lines: You will support Bafana. You will develop an interest in hamstring injuries. You will learn the names of all the players.
Pity they’re wasting their time over my house. I’m as immune as a turnip, as a Cape Town waitress is to the outside section of a restaurant or as a taxi driver is to solid lines. You get the picture.
"I have resisted the drama of the World Cup and continue to take the Drogbas for a walk in the park"
Nay, my dear readers, while the rest of the country are waving flags and swopping vuvu viruses, for me it is business as usual. Untouched by the hype, resilient to all forms of brainwashing, I will continue to go about my days with the composure of a Cumbrian tobacconist. I will take the Drogbas for walks in the neighbourhood, ignoring Joey’s penchant for peeing against every Lampard he can find. I might try my hand at baking again: rock buns, Bafana bread, scones and chocolate Rooneys.
On weekends, I will not be at the Beckham call of big-screen games and badly dressed commentators Blattering on about balls and bicycle kicks. Instead, I will go for Fabio walks in the forest, and later perhaps will throw some Coles on the braai and tuck into hunks of free-range Lahm.
At night, I will not be hanging with the Pepes at fan parks, throwing precious Silva at the bar for warm American beer in unmarked packaging. Instead, I will make myself a nice cup of warm Kaka, put on some soothing Capello, snuggle up in my Thierry cloth robe and dive into a good book. And on the days when our team takes to the field, I will take advantage of the empty shopping malls, cruising electronic shops for all manner of Dudas and claiming a Booth with ocean views for a spot of sushi and a glass of French Pienaar.
See, my little soccer suckers, how easy it is to escape being plunged into a Dunga of football delirium? Witness how simple it is to avoid going Gaxa over a silly game? Say thank you and Siyabonga for presenting an alternative way to surviving the next 30-odd days. It’s as simple as a tackle on a wounded midfielder, as a pass right in front of goals or as a header into the top left-hand corner. You get the picture.
Mmmmm, I don’t feel very well. I think I’m coming down with something. Something yellow and weirdly contagious. And since our Bafana boys bowed out so bravely against the French the other night, my condition is only deteriorating.
Viva, Bafana, Viva!
* This article, one of Helen Walne’s excellent series of Human League columns, was first published in the Cape Argus. Helen’s writing has been published all over the show and she is currently writing her first book.
So you’re slumped over your desk, waving a tear-stained segment of ultra-soft double-ply at the imaginary Uruguayan who has conducted a ghost-like coup of Thandi’s workstation opposite you? And his sneer is doing a damn good job of imitating that of Diego bloody Forlan standing over yet another free-kick?
Understandable. But wait, bru. All is not lost. Listen up. Hope springs eternal… and here it is: Tonight, Mexico holds France to a draw; then while Uruguay are thrashing Mexico, Bafana Bafana produce the performance of their lives to beat an unhappy French team beset by internal wrangling and characteristic petulance.
Result? We go through to the next round with – I struggle to even type out their name – Uruguay. See? How are you feeling now? That this is delusional? Fair cop.
But I remind you that this is football. Unscripted drama. The Spanish don’t need reminding of this. Ranked second in the world, they contrived to be beaten yesterday by Switzerland, ranked 24th by Fifa. Anything can happen in a high-intensity football match… and usually does.
Oscar-winning stuff: Uruguay cheat Suarez swan-lakes it to terra firma after trailing his left foot to catch Itumeleng Khune's outstretched leg and sneak the penalty which devastated the hopes of the South African nation. Infidel!
So, last night we were beaten by a national team that Fifa rank 67 places above South Africa. Where is the shame in that? I’ll tell you where the shame lay. Who were the so-called Bafana Bafana fans who packed up their shiny-new vuvuzelas and traipsed out of Loftus before the match had ended? Shame on them. Fairweather supporters! Scoundrels!
Do they have any idea how that feels to a Bafana Bafana team which has laid its collective body on the line for our nation? I hope that a thousand sharp-clawed tokoloshes visited their anatomical extremities as they lay treasonably under their duvets while the rest of us clutched our heads into the wee hours!
OK. So let’s hold a short post-mortem on what happened last night. It all looked quite pretty in the beginning, our boys pushing the ball around as choreographed by coach Carlos Alberto Perreira. Uruguay hung back, got men behind the ball, got themselves quickly to the man on the ball and gradually got the better of Bafana Bafana.
Our cohesiveness dissipated as Uruguay found their stride, denied us space in which to work the ball forward and generally harried our men into making ill-judged passes. There would be a neat one-two – or even a one-two-three – and the move would founder against our opponents’ rush defence.
We weren’t allowed to make use of our wings and got squeezed into the middle until we were dispossessed, allowing the combative Uruguayans to launch fast and fluid counter-attacks. Aaron Mokoena, who has been a tower of strength and stability, was reduced to the shakiness so apparent among his fellow defenders and it was only desperate tackling which denied early goals.
Then Forlan decides to do something never witnessed by the Manchester United fans he frustrated for so long. He scored what might be remembered as the goal of the tournament, helped by the ear of Mokoena pinballing his super-strike over and behind Itumeleng Khune and into the net. You cannot defend a goal like that. There is no legislating for such a marvellous thing. They just happen. And it happened to us.
What also happened to us is some dodgy refereeing. Mixed with a big drop of dodgy deception from Suarez who, I believe, trailed his foot over Khune’s lunge so that limbs were allowed to collide. Suarez swan-laked it to the ground and, of course, referee Massimo Busacca fell for it too. Like a Busacca potatoes. Penalty. Bang. Game over. End of story.
Until the next match. Yes, we need other results to go our way but, believe me, there will be many twists and turns to come. That is the beauty of football. and this is the beauty of our World Cup Wonderland. Feel it. It is here to bless our lives in more ways than you can imagine. Whether Bafana Bafana, who are punching above their weight at this tournament, progress or not… this World Cup represents so much more for our nation.
We are blessed to have this wondrous thing in our midst in our lifetimes. Continue to embrace it, my fellow South Africans. Be “SA-positive”. Lift yourself from your eye-moistened desk, look at your Uruguayan tormentor in the eye and gee vir hom ‘n moerse klap. Oops! I meant to say, “smile and wave”! Now get out there and show the world what we are made of. Gees. And ask of our beloved Bafana Bafana to show the same against France. They won’t let us down.
And, those of you who dumped your “SA-positivity” in the seat you prematurely abandoned last night… South Africans don’t do that. Keep it real. I’m watching you!
* I have joined the London Guardian’s phenomenal World Cup Fans Network for the duration of the World Cup football finals. If you would like to read what I’m saying about Bafana Bafana and get tongue-in-cheek tweeted updates during the matches, follow my tweets by following me on Twitter! If Facebook is more your social media thang, go to my Facebook profile and request to be a friend or simply join the \”Fred Hatman\” group for updates on my latest blogposts.
Right. Nobody is more “SA-positive” than me about our increasingly beautiful World Cup.
And I am loving the football fans who have come to experience the first African staging of our planet’s premier football tournament.
Especially the ones who have chosen to embrace the South Africanness of this World Cup. And most especially the ones who have entered into the uniquely beautiful human spirit of our party and parp vuvuzelas in their nation’s colours.
Now, here’s a succinct and simple message to the rest: “Don’t you dare touch us on our vuvuzelas.” And stop trying to impose your social mores on we South Africans.
We have been very nice to you so far, going out of our way to welcome you to our warm-hearted country and making every effort to help you feel at home. So don’t think you can come here (or sit in your faraway lounges) and colonise the way we celebrate soccer!
How rude. How patronising. We blow vuvuzelas at South African PSL (Premier Soccer League) matches weekend in, weekend out. And we’re not going to stop just because you prefer to sing songs – often obscene and abusive towards your opponents – and make provocative gestures at people wearing different colours on the other side of the stadium.
We South Africans prefer to celebrate the beautiful game by parping on vuvuzelas rather than chanting obcenities at opposing fans
I was at Italia 90. I’ve stood with the Liverpool away support and had coins thrown at me by Manchester United’s Stretford End. I’ve been chased by Leeds United hooligans through their city after a match at Elland Road. I’ve stood next to shaven-headed thugs at The Den while Millwall’s filthiest directed monkey chants at John Barnes and threw bananas at him. I’ve experienced the hate of the Ultras at Serie A matches in Italy. I’ve been caught up in scuffles and nearly run over by a Metropolitan police horse outside West Ham United’s Upton Park.
I could go on and on and on. But I won’t. There are many societal issues that need fixing in my country… but football hooliganism isn’t one of them. We South Africans know all about racial abuse. it is well documented. I don’t need to attempt to describe what South Africa has been through. We are doing what we can to build a nation. The vibe around this World Cup is taking us forward in mighty leaps and bounds. Vuvuzelas, makarapas, giant sunglasses, diski dancing and our inclination to express ourselves in a overwhelming generosity of spirit is, I believe, without parallel in world football.
This is how we blow in South Africa. Get over it!
Do not tell us how we should enjoy ourselves at our World Cup, even if we have extended to you the most magnanimous of invitations. How dare you? How dare you tell us to stop making a noise so that your cheapshot chants and silly songs can be heard? We have grovelled, we have scraped and we have apologised non-stop for 16 years for the horror that was apartheid. Enough is enough. We will not tolerate being told by sanctimonious twerps with superiority complexes living in boring and over-regulated countries how we should run our World Cup. And we will no longer stand for the fatuous trash spewed out about our nation by the British tabloid gutter press. As John Major didn’t quite say, put up AND shut up!
Africa may seem a somewhat chaotic continent to you with your over-polite, mannered and absurdly “politically correct” social regimes but we actually like living a bit on the edge. We thrive on adventure, a bit of danger and the constant frisson of excitement that comes with living alongside unpredictability and more than a tad disorganisation. That’s how we roll in Africa.
So I’ll say it once and once only: Buy, borrow or steal some earplugs and dare to join the greatest party on earth… or stay at home, switch off the telly and stick to trimming your hedges.
* I have joined the London Guardian’s World Cup Fans Network for the duration of the World Cup football finals. It is a phenomenal concept, one which uses Twitter to bring the voices (or tweets) of fans from all 32 competing countries together on one forum for the tournament. If you would like to see what I’m saying about Bafana Bafana and the impact on South Africa of the biggest sporting event to ever be staged in our beloved country, follow my tweets by following me on Twitter! If Facebook is more your social media thang, go to my Facebook profile and request to be a friend or simply join the \”Fred Hatman\” group for updates on my latest blogposts… which are not only about the World Cup!
After falling out of bed at Hatman Mansions at 5.45am in our sleepy village of Stanford this morning I stood – as is my habit – on The Blogorandah (my verandah), sipping last night’s cold tea, took a lungful of Marlboro and called for that bloody cat which does little else than stare at me.
But, even before Teapot had had a chance to issue forth its first miaow of the day, the haunting sound of a far-off vuvuzela caressed my ears. Yes, I said “caressed”, not “assailed”. For I am truly “SA-positive”, remember?
This lone vuvu wailed from the direction of Die Skema, the place on a hill above Stanford where the coloured Stanfordians mostly live. This vuvu-parper was getting his lungs warmed up for the midday call for South Africans to parp their support for our beautiful World Cup, now merely a matter of a couple of thousand minutes away. Can you feel it? Can your hear it? I could… from one of the creases inside the very distant Overberg!
But nothing prepared me for the outbreak of vuvu fever which resounded around our country today. This was reflected on the social media networks, where the hashtag word “vuvuzela” became a worldwide trending topic on Twitter and Facebook was awash with updates expressing joyous surprise at the level to which World Cup ecstasy was taken.
Let’s take a gander at what that looked like… and then I’ll throw in a video of Cape Town’s Long Street in vuvuzelic eruption for you to enjoy!
Twitter went vuvulistic, sending the word "vuvuzela" into the Top 10 trending topics worldwide! Paaaarp!
Facebook had a "feel-it" day with my fb friends spilling out of their skin to tell the world that South Africa was officially the noisiest country on the planet today!
How was that? Er, no, sorry, there is no known cure for “yellowshirt fever”… so let’s all just die happy! Even Julius Malema, the chastised and somewhat chastened leader of the ANC Youth League, tweeted out his support for Bafana Bafana and urged the country to unite in blowing their vuvuzelas for this World Cup. How do I know this? Well, JuJu and I, er, follow each other on Twitter, don’t we?
There you go... JuJu sings his "Kiss the Vuvuzela" song to the nation. And who, might I ask, would argue with such sound logic?
How cool is that? Amazing how Julius has calmed down since Sepp Blatter, Godfather of the Fifafia, became South Africa’s Public Enemy No 1, hey? Still, Jules, if you’re reading this – and I know you do – give me a shout anytime you want to send out another of your press releases to the good people of South Africa.
But I digress. Here’s that video I promised you. Sent over by my totally rad mates at CapeTownAlive! and filmed with the help of supercool video-sharing website Zoopy…
Nice. Now that’s what I call a country on the verge of giving the planet its craziest, most beautiful, friendliest, most human-spirited World Cup yet. How does that make you feel in your tummy? Warm and fuzzy, hey? Yes. I’m happy. Because, as your only “medically diagnosed SA-positive” blogger, that’s what I am on this earth to do… rub your tummies until they feel so warm and fuzzy. Ayoba!
* I have joined the London Guardian’s World Cup Fans Network for the duration of the World Cup football finals. It is a phenomenal concept, one which uses Twitter to bring the voices (or tweets) of fans of all 32 competing countries together on one forum for the tournament. If you would like to see what I’m saying about Bafana Bafana and the impact on South Africa of the biggest sporting event to ever be staged in our beloved country, follow my tweets by following me on Twitter! If Facebook is more your social media thang, go to my Facebook profile and request to be a friend or simply join the \”Fred Hatman\” group for updates on my latest blogposts… which are not only about the World Cup!
There has been such a noise made by those who won’t hear of the vuvuzela that the debate over whether the host country should be allowed to blow its own trumpet threatens to drown out news of what’s happening on the pitch during this World Cup.
As a proudly diagnosed “SA-positive” South African blogger – and one which, please see above, is not shy to use my country’s choice of “cultural weapon” – It behoves me to educate foreign sceptics about the “vuvu”.
In order for you to get your head – and lips – around the use of our cheap, plastic trumpet, I need you to understand why South African soccer fans just love to create a wall of noise at football matches.
I want you to think more Rio Carnival and less Trooping the Colour.
We are African. We don’t stand on ceremony. We like to express ourselves. And, if that means deafening the opposition on the field into submission, so much the better.
That’s just not football, you cry! How uncivilised, grumble purists of the Beautiful Game.
Quite. But whoever ruled that 70,000 bagpipers couldn’t blow the Scots to an unlikely victory at Hampden Park? Nobody. It’s just that the canny clan have been so busy thinking up rude chants about the English that it never dawned on them to use their most potent “twelfth man”!
So, now that I’ve converted you to thinking that the vuvuzela should be given a fair hearing, let’s listen to how it can used in the right hands…
There. I bet that’s won you over, eh? Right. So, now that you’re rushing off to buy one in your national team’s colours, you have no excuse for producing a one-note drone. I exhort you to get practising on your national anthem. And, if you can’t master that, then simply fall back on playing the South African one. Any way you like. Improvise. Express yourself. Blow it like be-bop, baby!
As I’ve been trying to tell you all along, Bafana Bafana (our South African team) needs all the help it can get. That’s why we’ll do our damndest to blow them to victory. Paaaarp!
* I have joined the London Guardian’s World Cup Fans Network for the duration of the World Cup finals. It is a phenomenal concept, one which uses Twitter to bring the voices (or tweets) of fans of all 32 competing countries together on one forum for the tournament. Visit The World Cup Fans\' Network and follow how fans around the world are viewing the fortunes of their nations at our beautiful World Cup. And, if you would like to see what I’m saying about Bafana Bafana and the impact on South Africa of the biggest sporting event to ever be staged in our beloved country, follow my tweets by following me on Twitter! If Facebook is more your social media thang, go to my Facebook profile and request to be a friend or simply join the \"Fred Hatman\" group for updates on my latest blogposts… which are not only about the World Cup!