Okay now I get it.
Soccer isn’t the most entertaining sport in the world to watch (football). It doesn’t produce the most highlights (basketball). It doesn’t require the most skill (baseball). It isn’t the most graceful (hockey). It isn’t the funniest (a three man sack race). Or the gayest (a three man sack rub).
But it definitely has the best and most passionate fans.
Why? Because when you’re deciding which sport to follow growing up in Barcelona, or most other European cities, you’re deciding between soccer and burying your head in the sand.
Everyone in Barcelona loves FC Barcelona with all their heart, kidneys, lungs, and pubes. This is why pronouncing your affinity for FC by wearing a jersey around Barcelona is about as uninformative as one saying you’re a human being (Unless you’re Rosie O’ Donnel, in which case it probably couldn’t hurt) What I’m saying is everybody in Barcelona has been on the bandwagon since their mom’s second trimester, so the pressure of trying to one-up each other in terms of hardcore fan-hood isn’t there.
That’s not to say everyone in Barcelona is a fan of soccer, though.
Soccer can get fucking boring. To get through watching a rec league soccer game I better be on some strong opioids, or at the very least be rubbing my boner against my inner thigh (…yeah, that’d feel good….euhhh).
But even going to a game at the highest level, say Chelsea vs Man U, the threat of a boring 1-0 game or even a 0-0 tie is always looming. Obviously there are purists that find beauty in a well paced low scoring match, but the majority of us might as well be watching the video replay of our mom’s Sunday book club.
Shitty metaphors aside, while not everyone in Barcelona takes joy in watching men run after a plastic ball, everyone still loves FC Barcelona. The kind of unconditional support they get from the entire city throughout the season is like what the Giants got during their 2010 World Series run.
The way they watch the games is awesome, too. FC plays the majority of their matches on PPV, so going to bars is the only way to watch. Therefore, the bars are packed full of jolly diehard fans for hours before and after every match. This method truly shits on rolling out of bed on Sunday still drunk and watching American (real) football in the dark while trying to postpone throwing up until a commercial break. In Barcelona, even if you your whole family died in a freak soccer ball accident and you truly hated the sport, you’d still have to go because there literally isn’t anything else to do. During a match the streets and stores are so empty you’d think they were sets for I Am Legend.
In America we love to get fucked up and watch sports with friends, but for some reason we only think it’s appropriate to do so during the Super Bowl or the occasional huge rivalry game. The Spanish would get riled up and drink for the equivalent of a Giants’ Wednesday day game vs the Astros.
But they aren’t there just to get shit-housed (level 8) drunk. They show up to support the team that is an ambassador and source of pride for their city like no diplomat, actor, or musician could ever be.
(That and the team never loses which makes rooting for them pretty fucking easy and rewarding)
♩ ♪ ♫I Like Having Sex But I’d Rather Be Sitting Down, Rather-Rather Be Sitting Down♩ ♪ ♫