Monday, 19 September 2011

Wilde's passion

This year New Zealand hosts the Rugby World Cup Tournament and hopes to cash and keep it for four years instead of Australia (Seen how the gets are going, I really have slim faith it will not happen).

I follow faithfully Rugby since two years, since my lovely lady brought me in Rome at the Flaminio stadium to watch the Six Nations Tournament match Italy - England.

Since then I'm totally nuts over this absurd game in which you see things  that, outside the game contest, would be immediately sanctioned as aggravated assault and first degree murder try.

To a non informed spectator, the dinamics of this game appear simply crazy. The ball zips on the field, passed behind instead of in front of the palyers. Each two meters, the ball carrier gets stopped by a mob of ten and more that simply smash him to pulp. When they are finished they leave him on the field and go seek the next victim.

The action is caothic and frenetic, but the referee stops it often for reasons he alone understands.Nobody protests, nobody as much as flinches, everybody carries on obediently.

Sometimes, for misterious reasons, 8 players form a tortoise war formation and go ruin their vertebrae against a similar formation of 8 opposing players. The ball rolls placidly on the field till someone collects it and the lynching can start all over.

Oscar Wilde told us that Rugby is a beastly game played by gentlemen and soccer is a gentleman's game played by beasts. it is honestly hard to contradict Lord Wilde after seeing those bulldozers that commit acts against pubblic moral but dare not raise their eyes when they get caught by the referee and as soon they stand up from the bloody pulp soup that the melee is, pat their opponents backs and rendez vous them to the next scrum.

To add surrealism to this sport, the supporters are well on par. They are crazy, coloured, noisy and as spotless as the players.

If they suffer a try or a penalty due to a foul, they do not curse the referee's mother, but instead scream at their defense line. Those are the supporters that, when they feel that the other's team supporter are not doing a good job, support the opposite team instead (You think this is nuts? Didn't read much of what I wrote till now, did you?) and bring their children to the games and teach them that the opponent has to be fought on the field and respected always and everywhere.

At the end of a game there is someone that wins and somene that loses and that even if you score a draw, because inside yourself you know if you gave it all or held back something.

So you have post game interviews that every soccer player should watch over and over again, with coaches that curse their team ( that just won) and players that blame themselves for errors that ( seeing the absurdity above here) would be absolutley human.

New Zealand is far away and as such games are at impossible hours. That said I never got up that happy at 5 in the morn a Sunday as when I have a Rugby match to watch.

Yes... Sunday... 5 in the morning... You still do no get that this game is nuts, do you? :D

Sunday, 18 September 2011

To War!

One of the most used clichés that the '80 cinema has left to us is the gear up sequence in "First blood II"

Rambo is ready to start his mission, during a details sequence, we see him tie his shoes, test his weapons and bind his undying headband to his brow.

Around him, people are getting ready, but he is completely focused on his preparation.

From now on, we will find this sequence everywere ( even Arnold did not miss his chance) and as such it is now an accepted writing cliché.
Why does that sequence convey that precise sensation? Because it is, no more, no less, the knight's gearing up before going to kill the dragon.

I'm talking about this because I had a curios experience on the train.

Once a month I have to work on saturday or Sunday and as such I have to take the train to reach the office.

I just had sat down that a girl sits down as well, right in front of me. The train starts to move and after a couple of seconds, my travel companion opens her bag and gets a trousse. Then she starts her make up.

The scene went on for about ten minutes. Nobody commented, neither did I. I just sat there and watched her unable to tear my eyes off. Conquered by the aura of calmness and sureness that that girl gave away.

She noticed my stare, but did not stop nor aknowledge it. She just went on as if nothing could touch her and as if she was simply unreacheable.

Suddenly I understood the reason behind the gearing up. We have rituals.

When we dress up, make up, comb our hairs, we are in fact donning an armour, we are readying up to kill the dragon.

Result is not already written, obviously, but point is that those little gestures prepare ourselves and our minds to the challenge.

The make up the girl was putting on her face is the same as the tie I bind around my neck or Rambo's headband before the mission. Through the gesture, we get ready to the action.

When I arrived to the office i thought back to the fact that my only ritual when i work on saturday morning is having a rich breakfast at the Reanrdy pastry shop. I really do not if it can make me win the dragon, but for sure it gives enough calories to stand up to almost everything :D