June 16, 2010

The Great Vuvuzela Debate Of 2010

Admist a June so filled with heavy stuff like massive oil spills, a global financial meltdown, a Presidency spinning out of control, Constitutional philosophy, historical disputes, and ultimate questions about the supernatural, it's good to spend a moment on something frivolous to break the tension.  Like sports and the intense debate about those goofy, irritating one-note plastic horns fans are blowing on during the ongoing World Cup tournament called vuvuzelas.*  I say, let the vuvuzelas stay.  Sports is supposed to be fun.  People have fun blowing on them.

Is it annoying to the audience at home?  No more so than fans doing The Wave during a critical part of any sports game or singing "God Bless America" during a baseball game and glaring at the atheists who don't sing along.  Or the Philadelphia Eagles fans singing that goofy "Fly, Eagles, Fly" song when the Iggles get a field goal or the USC Trojan marching band playing "Fight On" as though the band conducter was a CD set to "auto-repeat."  Or Angels fans with their inflatable bang-sticks.

The vuvuzela is part of what a soccer football game in South Africa sounds like.  If the Cup were being held in Brazil, there would be some Brazilian flavor to it.  If it were being held in Japan, there would be a Japanese flavor to it.  The tournament is in South Africa.  You want to tune in to watch a game in South Africa?  This is what you get -- fans armed with vuvuzelas.

Besides, they make one note.  ESPN, ABC, and other broadcasters can buy digital sound filters to eliminate that single tone.  Such technology surely exists.  So lighten up, World Cup fans. Enjoy the games and just turn the volume down if ABC never gets its act together and buys a digital filter.

Now, for your enjoyment, a scene that I hope you'll be seeing a lot more of over the next couple of weeks:

Daniele de Rossi and fellow Azzuri celebrate after scoring the equalizing goal in the opening match between Italy and Paraguay.  (Notice the Paraguayans standing around crying like little girls.)

Vuvuzela simply has to be very near the top of the list of "words that sound like they're about something sexual but really aren't."

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