Sunday, June 13, 2010

Dear Everybody Who's Sick Of The Vuvuzelas

A vuvuzela, for those unaware, is a horn that is ubiquitous in the World Cup this year, with thousands of fans blowing them in a way that entire sames are besieged with a droning wall of sound. Pretty much the only people having a good time with them are the fans at the games. The TV viewers think they're annoying, the players complain that it makes it hard to communicate on the pitch.

I have just one response to all this.

I agree with Sepp Blatter's assessment that "we should not try to Europeanize an African World Cup." This is what South Africa does. This isn't the Super Bowl; we don't play the games in a sterile environment with predictable weather and fans neutral sometimes to the point of disinterest. We have to allow local flavor.

And this is South Africa's local flavor, though admittedly, they're using vuvuzelas here more than they usually do. Usually, when we're not watching, they're used more sparingly, with local power Kaizer Chiefs saving them for the last 15 minutes. As far as the noise... yeah. That's the whole point. There's a local saying, "The baboon is killed by a lot of noise." The idea is to drown out the sound, to hinder the opposition, to give the home side a wake-up call.

And if you're not African, you're the opposition.

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