Tag Archive: bafana bafana


Nani sending off

So last night there was a game of football/soccer between Manchester United [soccer is one of my least supported sports but if i have ever supported a team it has been Manchester United… and then locally Kaizer Chiefs back in the day when Dr Khumalo played and i always back Bafana!] and Real Madrid in the Champion’s League. Real Madrid won 2-1 but of course there was “that red card incident” with Nani getting sent off…

i was out for the evening playing poker with some mates and so we missed the game, but it took me a minute on Facebook to find out what had happened – not that Real Madrid won or Manchester United lost but that there had been a “worst decision ever” and someone [or a really huge group of people from the sounds of it] “had been robbed” and so on…

i skimmed through one particular post with 30 plus comments in it and then wrote this Facebook status:

Imagine a world where people who cared that much about soccer/football cared that much about poor people…

i am still not quite sure why i did not cop more [or any, really] abuse for it – perhaps cos it was in the early hours of the morning when it was posted and most people missed it [maybe i should repost, hm?] because when i have posted questions about the absurd amounts of money soccer [or really most sports people] get paid, then people have come out blazing… i have never understood why so many of the people who have been so passionate about strongly disagreeing with me on my sports people salary opinion have been christians because i honestly cannot wrap my mind around how someone who reads and understands the Bible and following Jesus and the sheep and the goats story as one example can believe that it is okay for one person to receive $25 million while another person is allowed to die of malnutrition. i don’t think i’m judging anyone, i just cannot get my mind around that.

and not to say that people who are not christians should be okay with that, because i don’t think anyone should, but i do feel like Christ following people in particular [and yes, the distinction between christian and Christ following might be a first clue] should be outraged and upset at the completely ridiculous disparity between rich and poor [and yes, it is not confined to soccer – same with musicians, actors, politicians etc etc – soccer is just such an easy example]. to me it’s criminal. other people clearly think differently. i have just not ever had it adequately explained to me why.

the point with this particular quote though was not about people not being passionate about sport. the words “that much” are the key. i am simply expressing the desire to see people who are so passionate about sport [music, new year, latest Hollywood blockbuster movie] become that same amount of passionate about the poverty in our country, about treatment of women, about the insane levels of rape in our land [you would think something like “rape” merited more fervour than something like a sports match?]

and yes, it is a generalisation because there are definitely some people who are equally passionate about both, but i imagine if [just by browsing Facebook or Twitter after the game] every person who was above averagely passionate about the game last nite had the same amount of passion directed to even just one cause, person in need, situation… that our country would change overnight or within a month or year at least.

next year, there will be another Champion’s League trophy and quite probably a different team will win it. by then, this match will be forgotten. [Like Kony was within a week or two] Nobody will care any more. But they will care obsessively about the next match. And then the following year another Champion’s League will happen.

i find that sport and movies and books and music are amazing things to help me relax or get excited or spend time with mates or find a little escape in… and i think all of that is great. but get passionate, like i mean really passionate, foaming-at-the-mouth passionate about getting behind a cause, changing someone’s life, affecting the plight of the ‘least of these’, seeing someone rehabituated from prison, championing adoption or women’s rights, working towards reconciliation in the face of racism and so on… stuff to really put your life and energy and passion behind…

Imagine a world where people who cared that much about soccer/football cared that much about poor people…

2010 world cup standings

the world cup rankings have been released by FIFA and we came 20th out of 32 – not bad for a team that wouldn’t have even qualified for the event if we were not hosting it – hopefully inspire us on to greater things – note the previous world champs down in 26th – go bafana!

Fifa 2010 World Cup standings:

1 Spain, 2 Netherlands, 3 Germany, 4 Uruguay, 5 Argentina, 6 Brazil, 7 Ghana, 8 Paraguay

9 Japan, 10 Chile, 11 Portugal, 12 United States, 13 England, 14 Mexico, 15 South Korea, 16 Slovakia

17 Ivory Coast, 18 Slovenia, 19 Switzerland, 20 South Africa, 21 Australia, 22 New Zealand, 23 Serbia, 24 Denmark

25 Greece, 26 Italy, 27 Nigeria, 28 Algeria, 29 France, 30 Honduras, 31 Cameroon, 32 North Korea

[http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport2/hi/football/world_cup_2010/8814195.stm]

Awesome SA is a site dedicated to the good news of what happens in South Africa that we seldom get to read about in the newspapers or watch in the news – they send out regular newsletters with testimonies of south africans living and loving large and helping make this nation the thing it truly can be – i encourage you to get connected

‘Awesome SA is about encouraging South Africans to positively influence the future.’

Find out more about us on http://www.awesomesa.co.za

in their latest newsletter they included a number of encouraging links and i just wanted to share two of them with you – an open letter of thankx so bafana bafana:

http://blogs.sport24.co.za/mspr1nt/an-open-letter-of-thanks-to-bafana

and this letter by Shari Cohen, an international development worker in the public sector who wrote this in the publication she writes for back home – i will include one paragraph to whet your appetite but go read the whole thing:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/shari-cohen/south-africa-rolls-out-th_b_611802.html

“So, if South Africa accomplishes nothing more on the playing field, it will still have won as a host country. I am a cynic, no doubt about that. And yet I have to admit, I’m a little teary just writing this because I leave for home next weekend and I will be leaving a little piece of myself here in South Africa. I just hope I have learned enough to bring back a little piece of Ubuntu to my homeland, where perhaps with a little caring and a little water, it will take root as naturally as it does here, in the cradle of civilization. It’s funny, many people in America still ask me, “are the people in Africa very primitive?” Yes, I know, amazing someone could ask that but they do. And when they do, I usually explain that living in a mud hut does not make one primitive, however, allowing kids to sell drugs to other kids and engage in drive-by killings — isn’t that primitive behavior? I think it is. When I think of Ubuntu and my recent experiences here, I think America has much to learn from Africa in general, in terms of living as a larger village; and as human beings who are all interconnected with each other, each of us having an affect on our brothers and sisters.

As the 2010 Cup slogan goes, “Feel it. It is here.” Well, I have felt it, because I am here. Thank you South Africa, for giving me this unexpected gift. I am humbled.”

[and by one i clearly mean two]

it is here less

so it’s finally over

i remember when it was announced that south africa would be hosting the soccer world cup and countdowns of four years or more and then 300 days and finally a few weeks and then it was tomorrow…

we missed a large portion of the group games due to being on a namibia namrocking trip but we got to watch the opening ceremony and game in a restaurant called amazink in kayamandi township [where i used to live before i got married] with a completely diverse crowd with such spirit and life which was a complete vibe

we missed south africa/uruguay (namibia) but got back in time to watch a heartbreakingly close SA/french game which at half time looked headed towards the 4-0 we needed to progress – then my buddy dunc took me to watch netherlands/cameroon live at the cape town stadium, after watching slovakia take italy out at a packed quay 4 complete with orange saturated vibe in the afternoon before the game

and then tbV, Reegs, Muscle-John and myself did the fan walk which was a complete crazy exciting buzz (yes, and vibe|) and watched netherlands take out uruguay at on broadway

and finally back to amazink for the final with some okes from enGAGE for what i thort was a pretty awful game of soccer and reffing (and the third worst one i watched after france/uruguay and brazil/portugal) and afterwards really thort they should have given the cup to germany or just maybe kept it til the next cup – way too much acting on both sides, some questionable reffing decisions (netherlands missed out on two corners at least) and yellow carding and apart from a few exciting moments and a decent goal from spain, a pretty boring affair after some really quality games leading up to it

south africa proved we can host and did an incredible job which i think the whole world is pretty much agreed on

and so far no sounds of the feared xenophobia so hoping and praying that the hoping and praying has paid off – so much good in terms of unity, bringing people together and nation spirit has happened it would be tragic to lose that now

so well done south africa – brilliant job and bafana bafana you did us proud (agonising equalising goal from mexico on that first nite)

but, having enjoyed it quite a lot, and enjoyed hanging with people, i am relieved and ready for it to be done now

too much worship not directed at or near God – too much focus away from the things in life that count – way too much distraction

“it’s life Jim, but not as we know it” [dr bones, star trek]

aaaaaand….break.

five centimeters…

from a huge upset and a big chance of Bafana Bafana progressing to the second round of the world cup which no white person predicted (let’s be honest) – oh wait i mean expected cos i spent the whole week predicting a Bafana Bafana 2-1 win over Mexico and it was that close – just sent-to-meet-her’s past the post to deny what would have been an incredible victory

we decided to go watch in Kayamandi township where i used to live and found a restaurant (which was Amazink, no i mean that’s the name of it – it was pretty good though) and arrived early for the opening ceremony to find we were in a room slash courtyard/amphitheatre full of black-people wannabes (hey at least i lived there. ha ha. nah guilty as charged). and very few black people and were super bummed but fortunately we decided to stick it out and whe  the game started at 4 there was a brilliant mix of local (black and white) and foreign

and that’s how you gotta watch Bafana Bafana play. i remember watching England take on Germany in a pub in a London which is the way to do it, but for Bafana Bafana, that was the place – bunch of us from enGAGE (church) some with shirts, some (including me) with faces painted and many with vuvuzellas and just a complete vibe\

and when we scored! aw man. priceless. noise and chanting and singing and shouting and hugging and for the next twenty minutes absolute celebration (til they scored – man we came so close to holding them out – still think we gifted them that goal though by trying for offsides press – ai dangerous stuff, apparently) and it was really phenomenal

i would imagine the fan park would be number one prize (if you can’t make the actual game) but the thought of hours of travel and waiting and then hours of travel back does not do a lot for me – easy access toilet and drinks and a bunch of friends and new friends and a 5 minute trip home – i’ll take that

but ja, i think there is a lot more expectation now, especially watching how useless uruguay were against a not-much-better france – but sadly we will be in namibia namrocking and road tripping and so will probably have to come back to hear the results unless we can find a tv on the way… go team, you made us proud

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