Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Picking Soccer Winners

In watching the World Cup, it is often difficult to choose a side between two teams that you have absolutely no connection to. Uganda versus Pakistan? Who to root for there? A lot of fans will root for their home country, when that country is in the game, or otherwise perhaps the country that their ancestors hail from. Other times, you might root for a country that you always wanted to visit, or a country that has always been a good ally to the United States (which is why I'll often root for Australia when they play a team I have no connection to).

Sometimes I'll try to root against the country that has the most deadly animals (Brazil is home to the Goliath Spider, so they'll often get rooted against unless they play against Burma, which is home to the saltwater crocodile). Then there's the "which country has a cooler looking flag" in which case Nepal gets an automatic advantage, as does Kenya (spears and a shield on their flag) and Mozambique (a freaking AK-47 on their flag--the flag alone could invade several countries).

But watching North Korea play against Brazil yesterday I found myself a new reason to root for a country. I actually found myself feeling pity for the North Korean players, knowing that the longer they stayed in the tournament the longer it would be before they'd have to return to the living hell they call a country. Go North Korea!

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