Soliloquy in an International Cloister

Watch your step as Brother Lawrence takes you inside the monastery walls of a five hundred year-old international order. You'll laugh, you'll cry, you'll wish you had ignored your hormones and joined the monastery.

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Location: Rome, Italy

13 June 2006

There's a good explanation

for the U.S.'s lack of interest in soccer*, according to John Stewart. Europeans apparently use soccer as a metaphor for war. When England plays France, for instance, it is a metaphor for the Battle of Agencourt with David Beckham playing the role of Henry V and the French players playing the role of, umm, French soldiers.

In America, we don't need a metaphor for war because we have war.

Makes sense to me.

* I struggled with the proper term to use. I realize that most of my readers are European, who hate it when football in called soccer. On the other hand, people could be understandably confused if an American discussed football.


Anonymous Bobble said...

I'd settle for calcio ;o)

13 June, 2006 21:31  
Blogger Br. Lawrence said...

Well, duh! Why didn't I think of that?

13 June, 2006 22:09  
Anonymous MOobs said...

In Europe we use war as a metaphor for war. We love that stuff. For the most part, the US's invovement in wars has arisen as a result of being sucked into European conflicts.

The real overlap between football and war is clearer to those of us who travel abroad following our team.

14 June, 2006 12:51  
Anonymous Open Grove Claudia said...

There's a great article in this month's National Geographic about soccor/football. It says that "in colonial days, British soldiers and missionaries spread the game to the empire's remotest corners."

So maybe the British spread soccor as a way of keeping it's Empire from rising up and over thowing it. Just a thought.

14 June, 2006 15:36  
Blogger Br. Lawrence said...

It certainly helped to spread the use of the English language, as in futbol and goal. I remember watching a match on television during my early Italian years and wondering what the word "fah-ule" meant.

14 June, 2006 16:04  
Anonymous heather said...

I'm sorry but I'm still coming to terms with seeking sanctuary in a cloister and still there is football.

14 June, 2006 17:45  
Anonymous pog said...

Sadly, with Mr Tony Bliar's (sic) poodle-like devotion to Dubya, we also have war ...

15 June, 2006 10:06  
Anonymous kateevans said...

One of the papers I read yesterday (English online? Canadian? No idea now) said that the main reason the US isn't taking to football is that the television stations will never broadcast matches with two 45-minute periods during which you cannot show any adverts at all, much less adverts every three bloody minutes, because the clock never stops during a footie match. Makes sense to me.

20 June, 2006 18:38  
Blogger Br. Lawrence said...

Good point, although ESPN is covering the World Cup. It would require a creative paradigm shift on the part of the networks to find ways to earn advertising dollars.

21 June, 2006 17:29  

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