TUE., JULY 11, 2006
Just because you watched the World Cup finals last Sunday doesn’t necessarily mean you’re a terrorist or a commie or even a foreigner, it only makes you a suspect. That’s OK though, because these days pretty much everyone outside the Oval Office is a suspect, so you’re in good company. Amazing as it may seem, there are some people here in the U.S. who understand and appreciate the game of soccer. Even weirder: a growing number of them are red staters – red not as in “communist” or “menace,” but people from America’s heartland (necks, maybe?) who for some reason want their kids to play a sport that doesn’t demand high doses of steroids, a helmet, or a 42 inch vertical. There is no doubt that soccer’s rise in popularity is a sure sign of the decline of American civilization. Who could defend a sport where America’s best and brightest can get their asses handed to them by a no-name banana republic like Ghana in front of an audience of nearly a billion people? Stuff like that damages America’s rep. Pretty soon all the skinnies will start to thinking that just because we can’t use our feet we can’t point a grenade launcher at a mud hut. What next? The Canadian Army storms across North Dakota? Where does it end? Should we just stencil a big black “WELCOME” across the doormat of America? Fortunately, America has a hero: France. For better than 300 years now, the French have been showing us the way, whether it be the Cartesian dualism of Descartes (Cogito ergo sum) or the irrational symbolism of Zidane, who last Sunday partly revived France’s waning world cup machismo by knocking Italian defender Marco Materazzi flat on his ass with a wicked head butt to the chest. France lost, but what a brilliant display of freedom and independence…albeit the darker side. This weekend at the French Legation The Alliance Française d’Austin will be celebrating French independence with their 11th Annual Bastille Day Festival. The fest features French delicacies, desserts, a silent auction, petanque, and music by Paris 49, an American jazz band with a French twist.