Tonight is the semi-final Euro-cup match between Germany and Turkey. People here in Germany really like soccer, and do things like watch it on outside screenings. But the US Embassy is on its toes! Americans in Germany are warned that such sporting events can result in boisterous behavior, and even a fight now and then. At a minimum, the US Embassy tells us, such events can result in bad things like traffic jams!
The German news service Deutsche Welle goes further and lists some of the dangers that careless American might encounter: “Many of the viewers at the so-called fan miles, it turns out, are hopped up on a liquid intoxicant known as ‘beer.’ This substance has been known to lead to outbreaks of mirth, loss of equilibrium and unintended and later regretted coupling among users. In addition, soccer fiends have been reported to consume things called ‘bratwurst,’ which, depending on quality, can emit streams of hot fluid, known in street lingo as ‘grease,’ when improperly chomped upon.”
I hope that this means the State Department is getting ready for those other big dangerous event, like the Olympics, and even the Super Bowl in January. Such vigilance is important for American foreign policy which requires our allies to know how serious we are about security! If we are serious about foreign soccer games, I am sure that the next time the United States warns the world that other countries are creating weapons of mass destruction, America’s views are sure to be taken much more seriously!
Tony Waters is czar and editor of Ethnography.com. He came to us from the Sociology department at California State University at Chico where he has been a professor since 1996. In 2016 though he suddenly found himself with a new gig at Payap University in northern Thailand where he is on the faculty of the Peace Studies Department. He has also been a guest professor in Germany, and Tanzania. In the past, his main interests have been international development and refugees in Thailand, Tanzania, and California. This reflects a former career in the Peace Corps (Thailand), and refugee camps (Thailand and Tanzania). His books include: Crime and Immigrant Youth (1999), Bureaucratizing the Good Samaritan (2001), The Persistence of Subsistence Agriculture: Life Beneath of the Marketplace (2007), When Killing is a Crime (2007), and Schooling, Bureaucracy, and Childhood: Bureaucratizing the Child (2012). His hobby is trying to learn strange languages–and the mistakes that that implies. Tony is a prolific academic, you can read more of his work at academia.edu.or purchase one (or more!) of his books from Amazon.com.