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Saturday, June 24, 2006

Brazilian Cultural Experience

    I decided to write a fun note from Brazil concerning my cultural experience here.  As you may or may not know the biggest sporting event in the world is happening these past and upcoming days: the World Cup.  And of course it's not a number one sport in the United States, but here in Brazil it is the one and mainly only sport that captures the heart and imagination of the people. 
    Everywhere you can see the yellow and green from the Brazilian Flag that glamors the street, roads, and people of this wonderful country.  And as an American, when I arrived here seven years ago,  I had no clue to the sport soccer and what it represents.  And over time I have grown to love the sport,  and it's passion that it incaptures.  But as an American,  I will not and cannot root for the Brazilian "Selecao" as they would call it (meaning the national team).  Brazil has won the World Cup five times,  but I'm not one who enjoys to hear it.  I'm stuck in my American ways,  except for the love of the sport in which we are not passionate.
    As you may or may not know, the United States has a national team.  And last week they played against the Czech Republic in the World Cup.  Unfortunately, to my own depression,  they lost 3-0.  (Kind of like the feeling when the Minnesota Vikings lose, for the Minnesota folk)  I had many of my Brazilian friends come over for the game,  and it was still fun to watch, and some were rooting for our team for my sake.  Even at some point everyone was chanting U-S-A,  U-S-A.  So a nice festive atmosphere.  And after, we shared with each other what we though about the game. 
   On Saturday, the United States is going to play Italy (2 p.m. eastern).  It's going to be on national TV on ABC.  So it will be easy for any Americans to tune in.  Pretty much the USA has to win or were out of the cup.  The USA is not a bad team, but still are behind the European and S. American powerhouse teams.  But that doesn't matter to me,  I still have the patriotic passion for my own country to never stop rooting, after all,  it's our country.  And if we do win, it will at least be a small "Miracle on Grass" to celebrate.  It would be good for your patriotism to pay attention to this game. It may not mean everything to all of us,  but to the countries we play, it means everything (Like when the Packers play the Vikings). 


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