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World Cup Cultural Treasures from the Lusosphere

Nações Lusófonas na Copa do MundoAll three Lusophone countries, Angola, Brazil and Portugal, are still in the contest for the World Cup. As anyone could guess, there is little chance of finding any relevant blogging outside of the World Cup theme in the always diverse Portuguese speaking blogosphere. As the Lusophone citizen media makes its debut covering of the most watched sports event in the world, many kinds of diversity are present in its multifaceted football chronicle.

In fact, blogs can go deeper than would have been thought, mixing in their alchemy a variable blend of national passion, cultural traits and spirited words. The Lusosphere conversations are not only discussing winners and losers but also offering some glimpses of national cultural traits. Pearls arrive even amongst disdain for football's omnipresence in this season.

A woman from Portugal says,

“If everybody knows that blog posts are supposed to be a kind of augmenting / distorting / diminishing mirror of daily life, and if I can't hear about anything else, how to escape this state of trying not to write a post about football? Even when you don't want to talk about football, you talk about it in explaining why you don't want to hear about football. I surrender. So, instantly, it feels nice to say that Ronaldinho has an incredible hairdo. And that Cristiano Ronaldo makes crying faces. I think making pouting lips doesn't raise his virility capital, but it doesn't diminish it either. A good rise in his virility capital would be a goal followed by a strip. The yellow penalty card would be inconsequential. I think I haven't started yet to write about football. João Ricardo is cool and Figo already had a better hair-do. Iran's players have good looks. Maybe Portugal wins the Cup. Maybe to use ‘maybe’ in this case makes me shamefully unpatriotic. An alternative title for this post is, ‘how to use the word football so many times without writing a line about football’.”
The Non-PostThe estrogen diaries – Portugal

In Brazil, men are so often asked by women to explain the rules that it has become sort of symbolic:

yep. but I still can't see the point of this off-side rule.
The world cup is ours!!!Lapse – Brazil

It's pretty much interesting to follow the different colors of the debate in each of the Lusophone countries. The ‘Palancas Negras’ (Black Antelopes) have earned their first point with a goalless draw against Mexico on Friday. If Angola overcome Iran in Leipzig on Wednesday and if Portugal beat Mexico on the same day, the Africans would reach the final 16. Just dreaming about this possibility is already a great reason for a big party.

That's it! Our Angola is Winning!!! We were bright and almost scored in the adversary's goal! It came really close! Next week we are going to eat the ‘Aiátólákuméni'!!! Our ‘lost boundaries’ goal-keeper is superb! Now look here, han? This picture I received from my cousin! We went together and he took this photo and took me to his house. I am beautiful, am I not? Well relaxed in a cheering support mood!”
ANGOOOOOLAAA!!
Tropa de Elite – Angola

“It was an excellent result for Angola and we should recognize that, given what they've done. It was a pretty bad result for the Aztecs who had to make great efforts to score. Good luck for some, bad luck for the others. Many thanks to João Ricardo who was probably the ‘Man of the Match’.”
Mundial de Futebol, Dia 2Pululu – Angola

“It was a night of big emotions in Hanover. In 90 minutes, brave Angolan warriors made history in achieving the highest moment ever in the country's football. The giant distance in the rankings – 53 positions – was not enough for the Mexican team to conquer the hero João Ricardo.”
Fez-se história!Encarnados – Portugal

In another Portuguese speaking corner of the world, in the middle of the tense East Timorese conflicts, there are still some who reach for the games in Germany in order to stay connected with some happiness and joy.

RTTL efforts to make available the World Cup games to the football's fans — who don't have cable TV access — are lovable. The director said he wanted to contribute some opportunity for diversion to the people in the hard days we live in. With the attacks at various places in the city, not all have TVs. It is not possible to recreate the party of Portugal going to the finals of the 2004 Euro Cup but I am certain that, in the good Timorese manner, those who can't will be joining those who can and everybody will follow the games attentively. Portugal, Angola and Brazil capture the largest degree of sympathy from the Timorese, fans of Ronaldo, Deco, Figo, Pauleta, among others. Speaking for myself, today I froze all my anguishes about the present situation of my Timorese country. I have traded for the anguishes of football as I watch my Portuguese countries play. I suffer, from my balcony — which is to say, my living room's sofa — I scream, I get up, get nervous, turn the face… So to say, all those senseless things done by those infected by the ball! And I'll stop here, as I want to follow watching the game. See you tomorrow!
MundialTimor 2006 – Timor Leste


After a shaky start with Angola, the Portuguese seem happy with their team. The goal scored by the Brazilian born Deco paved the way to a convincing victory over Iran, guarantying qualification for the second round. As forty years has passed since the last time Portugal played a second round in a World Cup, it seems like the country can hardly contain the enthusiasm anymore.

“‘There is no hunger that doesn't end in abundance’, as the saying goes. The match between Angola and Portugal was like after the barbeque when they play the married against the single men. Now it was time to see our team playing real competitive football. About the game, we can simply tell that it was 90 minutes of good football.”
Portugal 2 – Irão 0Ruka's Place – Portugal

Just arriving from the Frankfurt of Portugal vs Iran, I was still digesting Cristiano Ronaldo and his tricks, the pleasure of seeing him running, dancing, being a delicious magic. The Germans tell me he was not efficient, played selfishly, and didn't play for the team. He wasn't efficient? EFFICIENT? If I could have, I would have spit poison along with the word, aiming for the middle of his face. It's obvious that trying to explain to a German that the score is not everything, is like trying to explain global warming to André Azeredo Alves (one of the trolls that took over some of my previous posts. I won't link him because bothers me the fact that he comes to masturbate on the sitemeter).
FDS de BolaContemplamento – Portugal

The French referee! Even Camões, without an eye, would do a better job in the game! French are good for berets, ridiculous mustaches, a brush at hand to paint a croissant, aside an abat-jour! Les Petit Miserables!!!
Momentos altos do Portugal x IrãoSombras da Realidade – Portugal

Brazilians are a special kind of audience in this sport. Even winning the first two games, with no major threat to its favorite status and having been assured a place in the Cup's second round, the team is under heavy scrutiny by the 180 million would-be football coaches. The contest with Australia showed improvement from the first game with Croatia, but for some bloggers the progress was too small to be acknowledged.

“Ronaldo ‘the phenomenal one’ has managed to prove to the whole world that, ahhhm… huummmm… Well, he proved that he is really fat and playing nothing! If you can't help, please, don't fuck it up! To classify him as ‘pathetic’ may be too hard… But if you manage to find another name that fits, tell me.”
Brasil 2×2 LifeTom, a very different being

“Now, truthfully, Brazil does not deserve to win, indeed! Ronaldinho and Roberto Carlos stepped on the ball (literally) many times through the game! I don't play any football, but even I would not fall that way. They hardly will go anywhere with a team like that, not to mention the fatty phenomenal one, who can't even find the ball… Football is the biggest national passion, nobody doubts that! The people breathe football, but the best thing is that we work only til 2 pm, as the game starts at 4. I love this World Cup in Germany!!!”
Copa!Sampafobia

“All right, we are the most likeable, the most amusing, the gladdest, and the most wanted. But this is not a beauty contest. This is the World Cup! We have to play the ball! Ok, we play the ball. In the end of the game we made the accounts and the balance is positive. But… where is the ballet? Where are those plays capable of pulling out smiles and applauses even from of the opposing audience? Ok, we are the best. If the whole world says so, we won't be the ones not believing. Do we believe? I don't know if you do. I do not.”
Brasil X AustráliaBranco Leone: a blog with no content

“Brazilians really like to complain. We get bothered with Argentina's smashing victory over the disappointing Serbia and Montenegro team and we get bitter to see the Spanish “Fury” applying a ‘chocolate’ [big score] over a wiped out Ukraine. Maybe we are the only country in the world who gets disappointed with a victory. Yesterday, according to the journalist Pedro Bial, Australians were doubly revolted after the game: firstly because of the defeat, which was somehow expected, and second because of the dissatisfaction Brazilians showed with their team's victory. I imagine that they thought like, ‘by one million kangaroo pouches, what a strange people!'”
Copa: Fala Sério!!!Lar dos Velhinhos

We've got to mention that, during the weekend, another event was directly influencing the Brazilian mood. One of the dearest Brazilian humorists died in Germany while covering the event for a TV network. Bussunda — aka Cláudio Besserman Vianna — meant more to Brazil than anybody would have expected, and it took some time for the whole nation to believe that the phrase ‘Bussunda morreu’ (Bussunda died) was not one more joke. Sadly, it was not.

Bussunda - Brazilian Comedian“…apart from probably being the most well known TV comedian in the country as part of the Casseta & Planeta crew, he was also a fervent football fan. He did funny commentaries and interview breaks between matches and he wrote many articles for football newspapers, magazines and websites. And, being the heavy-weight of the group, he was the guy who had the task of playing the role of Ronaldo in their TV skits. He also was the ‘official’ impersonator of Brazil's president Lula.”
Comedian Bussunda dies at age 43WolrdCupBlog

“It is almost unbelievable, because Bussunda was one of those persons who transcended the human condition to become a spiritual entity — in this case, a truly national institution of humor!”
O BUSSUNDA MORREU !?!?VOX LIBRE por Antonio Rayol

“To the competent authorities, Life and Death Department, Heaven, Highs, no address, Bitch-that-birthed-you: We are really mad with this ‘sacanagem’ [a vulgar term for treachery] with us and especially with him. Yes, the Man, the one who did Ronaldo, Lula, from ‘Casseta & Planeta’. You know who we are talking about, Bussunda. We want to know with whose authority you gentlemen take him from us this way, in a flash, offering no chance to him. The man was in Germany, covering the World Cup, happy with his life, playing a little football with the guys and, just like this, with no ceremony you come and finish it all? What the hell are you doing?”
Surita's ReliefCoió online

i bet on ronaldo as the big name in the world cup.
bussunda died.
brazil is playing badly.
argentina is the best team till now.
i am the last one in all contests.
i am in the middle of a stupid diet.
no money at all.
ain't got the student id.
shit… fuck!
funnyless jokei am saying

It's World Cup season and this time the Internet is playing a big role in the event, as we keep reporting. As new audiences are being conquered, imaginative approaches to the game's influence in society come from unexpected fields and sources. And analysts are now plumbing the Football Fever for cultural and political insights.

Lebanovsky [a coach famous for his statistical method] was remembered by a guy called Franklin Foer in an article in the New Republic. Foer tries to find out what political regime would fit best for a country to win the World Cup. He ‘Lebanovskied’ a set of historical data and discovered things: communist regimes made up good teams — but no one ever won a World Cup. Fascism, on the other hand, played greatly in the 30's — Italy won two Cups, Germany was third in 34 Cup, and Brazil made the third also in 38 (Foer has no problem in calling Getulio Vargas’ ‘Estado Novo’ what it really was). He tries out an explanation, stating that fascism is a regime that demands extreme allegiance to the native land above all, especially when playing in the field, promoting sports and hygiene and generating a good environment for the athlete fostering, but also generating extreme fear of losing. He asks: “What player will want to disappoint a leader who can order the breaking of his legs, or the imprisonment of his grandmother?”
What's the better political regime to win the Cup?Riverrun

“Perhaps because he is a naturalized American, ex-Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, the foreign affairs strong man in the United States from 1969 to 1977, loves the football game. In an interview with The Wall St. Journal, he tries to decipher the secrets of the most popular sport in the world to his compatriots because apparently football [with a round ball] is not a fever in the US… Kissinger is fascinated by how the game translates in the field the national character of different countries, the limitless joy of Brazil, and the determination of Germany.”
Kissinger teaches americans to watch the CupGlobal Life

The Lusophone blogosphere born of countries that give the world great football teams and players now also gives us conversations that are emblematic of cultural traits and national characteristics. Listening to the Lusophone these days, we learn not only about football but also a great deal about the world that we all share.

2 comments

  • Cara, estou de boca aberta! Fui traduzido! Além disso, adorei a matéria toda. Sua Digital Ecology é mesmo ótima. Obrigado pela parte que me toca. Virei freguês.
    Branco Leone, owner of a blog with no content (hahaha!)

  • […] Best Web posting on a Lusophone theme: Jose Murilo Junior thrilled us with his posts on Global Voices Online throughout the tournament. Translating from Web logs from Brazil, Portugal, Angola and other lands that have histories of Portuguese influence—the “Lusophone” countries, derived from the name of the ancient territory that coincided with modern Portugal, Lusitania—Murilo Junior pleasantly renders accounts of disaffection with the game. He thus shows that not everyone was so smitten with the daily overdoses. He quotes from the writer of “Não-post” (The non-post) on “The Estrogen Diaries” from Portugal: “If everybody knows that blog posts are supposed to be a kind of augmenting / distorting / diminishing mirror of daily life, and if I can’t hear about anything else, how to escape this state of trying not to write a post about football?” The sentiment runs harsher in the words of Carlos Narciso, in “A alegria do povo não é o ópio de toda a gente” (The people’s happiness is not the opiate of everybody): I am running from the great slaughter. I can’t stand any more ‘information’ about the World Cup. I am on the verge of getting crazy with the fans, the fans’ opinions, the commentators’ comments, the coaches, the ex-players. … Also the ‘reports’ about the football stars and the showbiz, the wives, the players’ girlfriends, the ex-wives and the soon-to-be girlfriends, the ex-wives and ex-girlfriends of the presidents, or the ex-wives and ex-girlfriends of the ex-presidents. […]

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