Wednesday, 5 July 2006


I know, I said I soccer was dead to me, but a very pretty girl invited me to go into town to watch the game against Brazil on Saturday night, which easily dismantled my resistance. The bars had turned televisions out onto the place des Lices, and a few had put stalls out to sell beer and gallettes saucisses. The square was packed with people, and the atmosphere was such that I was happy to momentarily suspend my concern's over the game's dismal aesthetics for the sake of sociological observation.

The game was, in keeping with the nature of the sport, particularly boring from an objective perspective, but everyone went crazy when France scored, and again when the final whistle went. A series of cars tried to drive past in an effort to leave the area, but each was stopped and rocked by revellers. One had its roof jumped on by a particularly enthusiastic and shirtless supporter, a few flares found their way into the bottom of the square by the erstwhile market area. In general though, the crowd remained just narrowly on the safe side of a riot, jumping around to the strains of "on est en demi" (we're in the semi) and "qui ne saute pas n'est pas francais" (anyone not jumping isn't french).

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