Every Four Years

Every four years the world comes together to dance, cheer (and this year, blow on their vuvuzelas) and watch soccer. While the matches are fun to watch, the nationalism and pride displayed is usually just as entertaining. Last Wednesday I took a break to watch the U.S. tie Slovenia in an exciting game. I spent the morning with a colleague from work at an Irish pub in Manhattan. What an atmosphere! I was high-fiving guys in business suits that I have never met before and will never see again. In that moment, when the U.S. tied up the game, it doesn’t matter where I was from, what my last name was or where I worked. I was an American cheering for Team U.S.A. and that is all that mattered.

In cheering for the U.S. last week, I was brought back to the 2002 World Cup when I was in college in Hawaii. It’s one thing to watch a good match between, say, South Korea and Ghana, but it’s another experience to watch that same match with people from South Korea and Ghana. It was an incredible experience given the extremely international environment I was in at the time. Each night I would get together with a group of guys at 10:00 pm in the dorm lounge and stay up late into the night watching matches. As we sat there and watched, cheered and bonded, national pride was displayed from countries around the world. It was truly a once in a lifetime event (until I can one day attend the World Cup). Go USA.

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