SMS travels

After five days of not seeing school, it was an adventure travelling to school. Composed some messages to while away keenly observing the surroundings.

Here goes:

Thanks to Glenda, she washed away the pirates of Hidalgo. Quiapo is reminiscent of post-MMDA raid Baclaran. Ang luwag! I hope this tranquil sight lasts.

The other one:

Worst innovation of the new millennium: motorcycles with built-in monos.

In other words, motorcycles with speakers.


Reactions next time...


2006 World Cup awards and what have you...

Here’s a unique World Cup experience. While the Korea-Switzerland match was going on at the wide screen with a throng of Koreans eagerly watching, a small group of supporters of team France settled for the smaller tv at the bar to view the France-Togo game that was going on simultaneously.

As a casual spectator, I was suffering from information overload trying to absorb two football matches that were going on at the same time. Groans of disappointment and roars of delight from the diehard fanatics were almost synchronized as they react at every move.

It’s just proper that the last set of fixtures is the most crucial among the matches in the eliminations.

Now to the awards proper.

Moment that started the World Cup: Germany v Costa Rica, 2-1, halftime.

I have been waiting for the World Cup to begin since summer, although I was not aware of the date and I had barely an idea on which group my favourite teams were. All I know is that it would be the best month in my life since the 23rd SEA Games and that I wouldn’t miss it even if I miss sleep because of it.

Just hours before kickoff, I was channel surfing and chanced upon CNN saying that the first match would begin in a while. Once I heard that, I primed myself that I wouldn’t sleep that night.

I started SMS-ing friends, asking around for cable channels that might telecast the Germany-Costa Rica match, while I was doing my own scouting with my remote.
Then, there it was, an Indian channel. I wouldn’t mind if the commentary would be in Hindu as long as it is live. I was pleasantly surprised to hear the announcer speaking in English with a mild accent. He sounded European, more like British, but there was no twang.

Right off, I was SMS-ing updates to the poor souls who couldn’t watch. While I was still filled elation, Philipp Lahm opened the gates with a goal. Ten minutes later, Paul Warchorpe responded with his own goal to tie the game. Everything was a blur that I didn’t realize the first half was already over.

Taking a break, I switched channels only to return at the Indian station with its reception distorted. There goes capitalism rearing its ugly head, but it was a good 45 minutes to set my mind for the next 30 days or so.

Moment that gave World Cup its ratings: Zinedine Zidane’s final World Cup moment.

A lot has been said about Zizou’s headbutt, and for obvious reasons why it is here. You know you’ve reached pop culture status when you are being referenced in American late night talk shows.

It overshadowed everything else, it was the highlight that got associated with World Cup 2006. Who cares if Italy won, Zizou butted Mezzaratti. Who cares if a Portugese did the same thing in their match against Portugal? Everybody forgot Wayne Rooney’s immature antics because of this.

And most especially, no one remembered the small riot that occurred between English and German fans in a city square after Germany defeated Argentina. The weird was that England wasn’t due until the following day. They just have to get themselves involved.

Match that gave World Cup its ratings: Portugal def Netherlands, 1-0, second round.

Four got sent off, a headbutt, a million yellow cards, lots of pushing and shoving, a multitude of flops that would make Vlade Divac the Gibraltar, and a broken fiberglass at one of the benches that was punched out of frustration.

This is one for those "When Sports Gone Bad" shows. I’m quite surprised that CNN didn’t sensationalize this but I’m sure ESPN Sportscenter would, and if Fox News has a football fan producer, this would be prominent in their broadcast also.

I reiterate: fights that break out during matches is what makes football special. It’s like a crash in Formula 1. A day wouldn’t be complete without it.

In a light moment, the camera focused on three players that were red carded who were watching on a corner. Deco looked like a lost kid staring blankly wondering what just happened while conversing with his Dutch counterpart. See, there’s still FIFA Fair Play in tense moments.

Overachiever of the year: Ghana

Really, Ivory Coast may have the best uniform in the lot, but it was Ghana the only team from Africa that advanced in the round of 16. It’s just unfortunate they collided with Brazil in that round.

Underachiever of the year: USA, Czech Republic

How could you explain this? They are in the group of death and everybody’s expecting that it would be a three-way fight between Italy, USA, and Czech Republic for the two coveted slots.

What happened? You have two top 20 teams getting eliminated with an obscure country with the name of Ghana advancing.

The consolation though is that the champion came from this group. Go figure.

Coolest uniform: Cote d’ Ivoire

If you have an elephant as an undertone in your uniform, then you have, hands down, the coolest football uniform ever. Puma’s set was most talked about, experimenting designs while still being FIFA-legal.

Match of the year: Germany def Argentina in penalty shootout, 4-2.

It helps that you are in a bar full of Argentina fans while you and some of your group are the only German fans in it. It helps that everybody else was wearing a shade of blue while I was sporting my third year high school intrams uniform (for the design, check out what Jose is wearing in the Adidas tv ad).

The house was packed and we were relegated to a corner when we usually have the best seats for us. We arrived just in time. It was all-nil but you could already feel the tension.

Second half started and that’s where things went nasty. Argentina drew first blood with a goal. I wasn’t moving from my spot. I was aching for a German goal. One would do.

Then it came. I reacted a millisecond ahead, jumped out of my seat, heard a collective groan, and I thought it was missed. I opened my eyes and someone patted me at the back.

For a few brief minutes, I have no idea what was going on. Then the scores flashed and they showed the slomo replay of the goal. Game tied! I told myself, "Must not have a delayed reaction."

The suspense was killing me. Then it went to extra time. Good thing this was the 11pm broadcast or else everybody would be crying for sleep.

As it is, everybody is game for penalty shootouts. A few Argentina fans though want it to end in extra time. As for me, any would do as long as Germany wins.

Then penalties came. Nobody was budging at their seat. Goal for Germany! I raised my arms. Touche for Argentina. I didn’t panic.

Three more goals for Germany, I was jumping up and down. I now could finally breathe.

Rookie of the year: Fernando Torres, Spain

With teams having old players entering the championship, there wasn’t a rookie who stood out. Well, you have Schweinsteiger salvaging the World Cup for Germany with a semi-hat trick in the battle for third, but he was more of a late showcase.

The manager of San Mig Pub in Alabang was raving the young Spanish strikers because they were actually doing good. While waiting for the England-Sweden match to start, I was watching a replay of a Spain game. Hat trick for Torres. Hmmm… we might be into something here.

However, he disappeared when his squad needed him the most. And yes, Spain had to lose to France.

Coolest goal: Joe Cole, England v Sweden, group matches. David Beckham, England v Ecuador, second round.

Why all-England? Sue me then. Actually, I hate it to put Beckham here. It’s just that the English strikers went blank. Michael Owen injured himself, Wayne Rooney found the pressure too much to handle and started imploding, Crouch was just a gangling beanpole.

Tell me where the English goals would come from? It didn’t surprise me though that it was the midfield who provided the points.

I would’ve put Italy’s first goal against Germany here. But come on, that would be like self-mutilation. Don’t show me highlights of that friggin’ game.

Moment that would made you think it’s a sign of the Apocalypse: Filipinos are tuning into the World Cup.

Really now, who would’ve expected that bars in Metro Manila would stay open until the sun shines just to accommodate World Cup fanatics? Or that the CNN fanzone would receive submissions coming from Filipinos who are fortunate enough to be in Germany at this moment of history?

Bandwagon? Not exactly. Now, if only PFF could bankroll on this momentum.


Nike 2002 World Cup tv ad

What I didn't manage to find to in Google Video, I found in YouTube. It features the remixed "A Little Less Conversation" of Elvis Presley.


Forza Azzuri!

I called this one right, didn't I?


Pacquiao ads

At the end of the first round of the Pacquiao-Larios match, there were a total of nine ads shown. I didn’t count the total elapsed time but give each ad 15 or 30 seconds.

There was a tv ad of a telecommunications company, a deodorant, an insurance company, a beer, and two plugs for an upcoming show. At least they didn’t bombard that spot with Pacquiao endorsements, unlike the later rounds.

Talk about a Pac-kage deal.


World Cup finals prediction

Azurri winning over Les Bleus in 90 minutes, 2-0.

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