Last Words: How I Watch Football - The Reykjavik Grapevine

Last Words: How I Watch Football

Last Words: How I Watch Football

Published July 4, 2018

Photos by
Davíð Þorsteinsson

For years now I’ve been developing my own method of watching football. Some will find this method, which I’m about to describe in exhausting detail, extremely annoying. They’re probably right.

I will use the two matches Iceland has played so far in the World Cup as examples.

I live in New York, so the games of the World Cup, which are played in Russia (as if you didn’t know), tend to take place at weird hours for me. The first one, against Argentina, was scheduled at nine o’clock in the morning on a Friday, and I had set up a date with a friend at a bar in Brooklyn. Sadly, I often don’t go to bars at nine o’clock in the morning; I’m usually on a bus, taking my daughter to daycare, or sitting in a coffee shop, composing a sentence of immortal literature.

As I was about to jump on my bike, my friend texted me that he and his family would actually not make it to the bar. So, logically, I ended up in a coffee shop, where I wrote a short story, glancing on a live text feed every now and then to keep up with the score.

When the second game started, against Nigeria, this time at eleven in the morning, a charming waiter was refilling my glass with Prosecco. Sadly, I often don’t drink Prosecco before noon. But I had a great excuse for this––my friends were getting married.

When I went over to the bar, a few minutes later, the bartender thrust his glowing phone screen in my face; and each time I returned for another drink, he repeated this kind gesture.

0-0. An IPA, please. 0-1. Oh, damn. Another IPA, please. 0-2. Oh, well, we lost! Let me have a gin & tonic, please.

And this is how I consume the most popular sport on the planet. I’ll admit that I think I’ve elevated my fandom into an art form. I can’t wait to find out what adventures the upcoming games in the World Cup have in store for us all.

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