The Conflicted Fan

Spectator contributor Brian Schwartz discusses the Champions League on the Rumpus.

This past week, I should have been haunting Brooklyn’s British ex-pat soccer bars, nestling myself into a corner with an afternoon pint or two, watching as the Champions League semi-finals began. I should have devoted myself to top-flight, high-stakes international soccer, but I didn’t. I didn’t go to Floyd on Atlantic Avenue, nor did I take the L train to the sweet Williamsburg bar kind of near the Eighth Street stop, the bar normally full of, I think, Liverpool fans. The loud crescendos of British men shouting their teams’ fight songs wasn’t what kept me away—I love those stupid songs, wish I had one of my own to sing. Work wasn’t really the problem, either. Wednesday, certainly, I could have found a way to ditch my office hours and get over to Slainte, the Irish soccer bar on Bowery where I once saw a pair of Turkish young women screaming in unrestrained glee when their national team scored a jaw-dropping goal against the Czech Republic. But no, this week I went about my business as though the Champions League games weren’t being played, as though these bars weren’t full of alcohol-fueled fanaticism. Read the rest of Brian’s piece over on the Rumpus.

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