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10/8/2003 c1 Steven Lawrence
Jago:

I'm shocked. You know baseball history-a happy medium we can talk about civilly. While the Cubs have in fact been winless for quite sometime, it's not 1938. It's 1908-95 years. They lost to the Red Sox in 1908. The Marlins, a team I'll root for being a Miami resident, look damn good-Chitown's going down.

Like the Red Sox tonight.

-Steve
10/8/2003 c1 Steven Lawrence
Jago:

I'm shocked. You know baseball history-a happy medium we can talk about civilly. While the Cubs have in fact been winless for quite sometime, it's not 1938. It's 1908-95 years. They lost to the Red Sox in 1908. The Marlins, a team I'll root for being a Miami resident, look damn good-Chitown's going down.

Like the Red Sox tonight.

-Steve
10/8/2003 c1 James Jago
I'm going to be nonconformist and state that I, an Englishman, prefer basketball. It's more exciting to watch, and scoring is generally more spectacular. By the way, who likes the idea of a Knicks vs Harlem Globetrotters exhibition game? The proceeds could go towards building basketball courts in inner-city NY or something, maybe.

Partly out of sympathy for the underdog but mainly to annoy Stephen Lawrence, can I wish the Chicago Cubs luck with the next World Series? The poor guys haven't won since 1938, after all.
10/7/2003 c2 Steven Lawrence
Calvin, this is war. Be ready, my rebuttal will be coming shortly. Nothing tops a Yankee fan. It's ON!

-Steve
10/7/2003 c2 14Admiral
A very moving, inspiring chapter. Bravo all you Boston and New England fans!

'Course, it brings a tear to my eye to contemplate how disconsolate you're all going to be come the end of the ALCS.
10/6/2003 c1 Steven Lawrence
"As for Steven Lawrence... the twins are going to murder the fucking Yankees..."

I think not my friend. Ha ha ha! Yankees are waiting for either Oakland or Boston in the ALCS-so much for the murder.

-Steve
10/3/2003 c1 150SpawnMeister666
As a HUGE 'soccer' fan (incidentally, I object to the word soccer, as we were playing this game a long time before you Americans came up with the idea of 'football', and how does that work anyway, a game of football where you hardly ever use your foot in connection with the ball?), anyway, I was interested to see what you were going to come up with on this subject.

And I have to admit, I'm impressed. Its well thought out, makes some good points, and is certainly a plausible reason for why the game just hasn't seemed to catch on in the USA.

So I guess I give the essay a big thumbs up! I'd be interested to know what you think of Rugby though, which is the sport the Americans bastardised to come up with your version of 'Football'

Spawny
10/1/2003 c1 13saintchris
There is plenty to get excited about in soccer, and there is certainly strategy involved.

If it wasn't exciting, millions of people around the whole world wouldn't watch it.

If there wasn't strategy involved you wouldn't have managers (coaches) who become great by getting to play the game in 'their' way, so that by winning, their tactical expertise is shown to surpasses that of their opposite number. The best managers get huge amounts of pay for what they do and are in high demand.

Just two minor points there.

But, getting back to the point of your essay, I believe that the main reason that soccer has never gained a large following in the US is that there are too many competing sports in the country that have century-long traditions and huge audiences. There simply isn't the tradition of going to the match on a Saturday afternoon as there is in Britain, but there is a tradition of going to the football on a Sunday night, to the baseball/basketball/hockey almost every night during the season. Those traditions won't change, which is why American sports haven't really transferred around the globe, because they are younger than soccer, rugby or cricket.

It is nice that golf is 'shared'.

The stars of the past of the American sports are well known around the whole US, but I bet I could name more pro football players and baseball players than you could name soccer players.

Oh, and being a Blackburn Rovers supporter, I must congratulate your nation on providing us with our superb goalkeeper, Brad Friedel.
9/29/2003 c1 17chocoholic
I did have a pathetic theory as to why we're so obsessed with "soccer" (It's football goddammit!)in England. In the US you have all those gun rights and the NRA ect. (not that I agree with them) and so for our matcho blokes to prove their masculinity they have to sit around in bars with shaved heads drinking, watching men in shorts and glassing anyone that doesn't support their team. It's a sad, sad, bizarre world.

Sarcasm ends. I liked your essay,it was interesting.Is this going to be a continuing thing?

Not that this'll make sense to anyone outside of Lancashire but WIGAN LATICS ARE IN DIVSION ONE! You are my sunshine, my only sunshine, you make me happy...
9/29/2003 c1 14Admiral
Great essay! Nice analysis of American versus International pastimes. Everything is dead on.

And C Shot...on what planet will this fantasy of the Twins beating the Yankees come true?
9/28/2003 c1 7C Shot
Ahh yes soccer... my town dont have any team, i am not sur, but does my state even have a team? Minnesota... I dunno, I play soccer now and then in gym, but now I dont have anymore gym classes to take so I'll probably never play it agian...

As for Steven Lawrence... the twins are going to murder the fucking Yankees...

As for british dude... what the hell is cricket anyways? And tv ruining it, psh... if I remember playing Madden 2004 there are some European football teams, I mean real football, not pussy soccer stuff.. they also stink, dont got any soldiers (I am making a refrence to the wae thing you said) to do proper battle on the grid...

Well I am outta here, have a nice day...

~C Shot~
9/28/2003 c1 27Loganberry
Interesting comments here, especially from my British perspective. I tend to think that each of your three main sports can be paired with each of our three:

Our football (soccer) is similar to basketball in that it's a game that needs very little specialised equipment, and that you can find being played in the street wherever you go. It's also by far the sport most played in poorer communities.

Baseball can be paired with cricket. Both are summer games, are obsessed with statistics, have wonderful traditions, are best heard on the radio and feel under threat from quicker, faster, louder sports. These are the games for the connoisseurs.

That leaves American football to go with rugby - except that rugby players don't wear such ridiculous pads, and the game doesn't stop every ten seconds for the benefit of TV. (So I'm biased! =;) )

As for soccer, I think that the US lacks several things necessary for its success. One is a league structure based strictly on merit - with a tiny number of exceptions, British football clubs are not franchises. My local team, Kidderminster Harriers, was formed in around 1880 and has never played in another town. It doesn't matter how much money the owner's pumped in - if you lose too many games, then your team goes down a division.

Secondly, the pinnacle of a footballer's career is to play for England (or whoever). Americans, it seems from this side of the Atlantic, aren't desperately interested in international competition in most sports. England v Germany in a World Cup would be *hugely* bigger than any club game: would that be the case over there? I doubt it.

Also, there's no college sport as you know it. University soccer teams are unknown outside their institutions. With the partial exception of Oxford v Cambridge cricket and rugby matches, and the Boat Race, a crowd of 10 at a college match would be thought enormous.

And finally, I don't think there's really much of a desire on the part of most soccer-playing nations to encourage the USA to become interested - because, bluntly, we don't want your TV companies wrecking the game with ideas of bigger goals, quarters instead of halves or compulsory shootouts after a drawn game. If they can't cope with the idea of a 0-0 draw, then that's their problem.
9/28/2003 c1 8S. T. Lawrence
"Shut up and turn on the TV, the Sox are playin’."

Damn Calvin, I hope you don't mean the Red Sox.

Go Yankees, all the way.

This was an excellent essay; couldn't agree more.

Look out for Lefty to review this in total agreement. He likes soccer a bunch and thinks everyone should watch it too.

-Steve
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