Wednesday, February 11, 2009

a.k.a. "crazy Irish football"

So, I was out last night, as every Tuesday night, having dinner and a few drinks at the local Irish-style pub, salt hill. (Great place, I studied for quals there) Maybe it was just because I had a wee bit more to drink than usual, but I became fascinated by the sport being played on television. It looked like soccer... right up until one of the players (on the Dublin team, I believe) picked up the ball (which looked like a volleyball) and ran with it, and then did an extraordinary thing: dropped it and kicked it way above the net, then celebrated. He had in fact scored a point. And then it looked like someone shoved him. I watched as long as was polite (at least one person at the table had her back to the screen, so it wasn't exactly a social pastime) and then jotted down "crazy Irish football" in my notebook and put it away until this evening.

Searching a bit on this (remarkably close phrase) I came up with Gaelic football. It's a bit like soccer, a bit like rugby. And really, it seems to be a fascinating game. A bit rougher than soccer, but not the focal point of the game (I was once remonstrated by a freshly-pummeled rugby player, when I asked "who won?" for "missing the point") And as many geeks have discovered, it's much easier to feel at home being a sports fan with existential geek angst if the sport in question is bizarre, not widely known, or simply Not (American) Football.

Also in my notebook is a note, "crazy Irish lacrosse", which turns out to be Hurling. (Wikipedia link there, because there is no way in hell I am doing a video search for "hurling") I don't actually recall much about that one, as we were getting ready to go at that point.

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