World Cup with my morning coffee

You know what’s great about watching World Cup madness at my nearest New York sports bar? The two countries at play are heavily represented in the bar; be it Germany, Paraguay, Slovakia or Ghana, the Motherland is well-covered. It makes for an unusual scene. Every morning I run to grab coffee at Panino Sportivo – yes, the sports bar down the road makes great coffee – and every morning I am greeted by boisterous shouting matches between two very different peoples. Come eleven o’clock, maybe sooner depending on the beer culture of each country, the regional beer of choice will be brought out for the viewers like its happy hour. It makes for a strange beginning to my day, but one I can appreciate. It isn’t too often I can witness such a union. I don’t follow the World Cup too closely so I never know what I’m walking into.

This morning’s match was particularly interesting to observe. I walked into the bar, packed as usual, to find Berliners and Londoners cursing at the screen. I’ll spare you the stereotypical details – but it was all there in front of me – and it was fantastic. I could cut the tension with a saw and yet, at the bar I saw an Englishman ask his German neighbor on the bar stool to pass the sugar, which he did with a smile.

The world cup – there should be some kind of sociological study of this game.