Dear Crabby, Should I Watch the World Cup?

Dear Crabby,

With the World Cup kicking off, I find myself wondering, should I bother to watch it? Also, if I do, should I call it soccer or football?

Thanks!
P. Lay

Dear P. Lay,

Ahhh, yes. The FIFA World Cup, which in case you weren’t aware stands for Fédération Internationale de Football Association. Like the Olympics, this global event happens every four years and brings out all the Americans pretending they care or even know anything about the game. Personally, I’m a baseball man. Now that’s a game as classic as my mom’s apple pie. But somehow, I now have grandkids who spend their weekends traveling around playing soccer. Drive by any open patch of land and you’re likely to see it dotted with rugrats chasing a soccer ball around and parents on the sidelines in their tricked-out lounge chairs trying to pretend all this isn’t sucking the life out of them while simultaneously draining their bank account. If you are ever around any of these diehards or folks born outside of the U.S. who actually grew up playing the game, always, and I do mean always refer to it as ‘football.’ Otherwise if you are a maverick or don’t value your vital organs, by all means call it ‘soccer’ when around such fans. That takes care of one of your questions. You also asked should you watch it. Well, here are a few things you should know.

Dear Crabby sits infront of his laptop

Dear Crabby Gives Advice

First, it’s going to be on alllll month. That’s right. There are 64 teams playing in 12 cities all over Russia (first time in Eastern Europe), so this ain’t gonna be as fast as the Golden State Warriors sweeping the Cleveland Cavaliers. Like the game itself, this will take some time. Second, speaking of teams, guess what? The United States didn’t make the cut! That’s right. During the qualifying games to get into the World Cup we lost to … wait for it … Trinidad and Tobago. That means for the first time in over 30 years, members of the U.S. Men’s Soccer Team will be watching from their La-z-Boys just like millions of others. But before you go crying in your Gatorade, it was recently announced that the U.S., Canada, and Mexico won the bid to host the World Cup in 2026. It will be the first time we’ve hosted since 1994 and the bigwigs are hoping that will get more people excited about the sport, so they can bring more professional teams to the U.S. (but still probably not Detroit). The other bright spot is winning the bid usually means hosts are automatically given a spot in the tournament. Congrats! You have eight whole years to brush up on the lingo and become an expert.

Even with the U.S. on the sidelines, there are plenty of underdogs you can jump on the bandwagon for and cheer on. For example, Iceland and Panama will be playing in their first ever World Cup. And Egypt is back after a 28-year hiatus. If you want a sure thing, I’d suggest rooting for Brazil, Germany, or Spain. Heck. Now that Miguel Cabrera’s season is over for the Detroit Tigers, I may watch a game or two. At the very least I’ll be able to enjoy a decent 90-minute nap.

Go team!
Dear Crabby

About Dear Crabby

Stuck in a rut? Need some biased advice from a crabby old baby-boomer? Read regularly by thousands and loved by some, Dear Crabby answers questions weekly to life's challenges. Send him a note at DearCrabby@rochestermedia.com.

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