Dear Friends of German Comedy,
Forty-eight months of hurt. And counting. Unless you include last year’s Confederations Cup victory, in which case it’s 360 days of hurt. Either way, it is a tough time supporting Nationalmannschaft, Germany’s national football team. At least Germany is blessed with a strong and stable government. Hang on, that’s on its last legs, too.
Living abroad you do become more patriotic. These days I am world class when it comes to basking in reflected glory. No matter how silly the triumphs might be, I get maximum enjoyment out of them. One of the happiest days of my life was April 19, 2005 when Germany won Pope. Had I still been living in Westphalia I probably have referred to Benedict XVI as a backward Bavarian yokel but living in Britain I was bursting with national pride. Reading recently that Germany won the World Championships in marbles gave me a spring in my step too.
One of the upsides of crashing out in the group stages is not having to go on a bender another four times during the knockout stages. Somehow watching Germany in a major tournament seems to go hand in hand with memory loss and terrible headaches. Also, let’s be honest, we never looked like winning the tournament, so we might as well go home at the earliest opportunity. That’s some sort of efficiency, I guess.
Since last Wednesday, England supporters have been getting huge pleasure from gloating about the Three Lions still being in the tournament and Germany not. If only there was a word to describe that phenomenon. But fair enough, ignoring 1950, when Germany for whatever reason wasn’t allowed to participate, 2018 is the first time ever England have outstayed Germany in a World Cup.
And with British high streets in crisis there’s nothing quite like an economic miracle in form of a sustained spending spree on booze, barbecues and St George’s flags.
At the risk of sounding ungrateful, I am undecided on how far I want England to go. As much as I’m happy for Gareth Southgate and his men to do some serious damage in Russia I’m unsure how much I enjoy eating all that humble pie.
Maybe this time England should get through to the last eight and if everyone behaves and I don’t get heckled too many times, they can go a bit further next time.
By which time Nationalmannschaft will hopefully have regrouped. And if not, there’s always the marbles. And that Pope Francis might not have much left in the tank either.
Enjoy the match(es?)
PS: Please find below a list of upcoming gigs. It would be great to see you at one of those.
PPS: As you can see I have had the website redesigned. Please have a browse. I particularly recommend the shop. 😉
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