Sunday, September 19

Real Football

Christmas really ends when you leave the table for the little ones and sit down at the table for the grown-ups. There you still don’t know, but there you are already lost

They say that the lottery is a fool’s tax, so I have no choice but to pay it, so paying my annual fee is my due in a consistent and legitimate way. Actually the lottery reminds me of something simpler: Christmas when I was a child, which in turn is the only Christmas worthy of being called a Real Christmas, with a first and last name. The day after the draw, he took the double page of results in the newspaper and the family’s ballots, and went looking for the numbers through the endless lines. I liked it, it was an old and harmless entertainment, like writing down the goals you heard on the radio Carousel in a notebook, or sticking the corners of the stickers on your fingertips, a simple and childish pastime.

I always did the lottery at my grandmother’s house Araceli because at Christmas we would go to Zaragoza, where half of my family still lives. I can’t call it Christmas now, since before the coronavirus: there is no road trip, there is no stop at a bar to buy a compilation of Christmas carols, there is no detour when arriving in the big city to see the lights of El Corte English –which we did not have in Castelló–, there is no soup at my grandmother’s house because there is no grandmother, there are no photos of when we were children or memories of my father’s military or my uncles’ weddings, and there is no I need to continue because you already understand what I am saying.

Christmas really ends when you leave the table for the little ones and sit down at the table for the grown-ups. You don’t know there yet, but there you are already lost. There the good ends in a more precise and truthful way than with the legal age of majority, the driving license or the selective. At the children’s table, I observed the infinite capacity of my cousins ​​to eat prawns and prawns, but I hardly ate because I am too lazy to peel prawns and prawns. I think that the effort is not worth it and it still happens to me with most seafood, but I don’t usually say this in public in case I have a Galician girlfriend one day.

Football always awaits us

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The best thing about my grandmother’s house was a plastic ball, a simple yellow ball. It was always on the umbrella stand by the front door, I suspect it was there for centuries. The ball was losing air, but year after year it survived. My grandmother’s house also had a very long corridor, so sometimes four or five people would get together playing games there, giving us heat in that narrow and cold corridor.

I reckon I played for over two decades in that hallway. I changed, the others changed and everything changed except the umbrella stand, the ball and the corridor. I think that is the greatest virtue of football and of our team. Also today, in this League without stands, in these silly months that lead to the detachment of many fans who get tired, who say that it is difficult for them to watch football, that sometimes they do not even watch their team’s matches. That they don’t feel like it and they are fed up and bored, but nothing happens, that nobody worries because football has its defects, but it always awaits us like an old friend; Real Soccer, with first and last name, the old and simple pastime. And when it comes back, unlike Christmas, enjoying like a child is still allowed.

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