Sunday, June 13, 2010

Sporting Allegiance

Max had his last day at preschool this week and is now 'on vacation' for the summer.  Oli fell asleep in the car on the way over to his brother's party, the grand finale of the term.  Three songs had been practiced and prepared for the event. The first was a baseball song which Max had let slip at home in short bursts: '1, 2, 3 strikes, your out! At the Old Ball Game!' seemed the most enduring line.  This song, I'm told, is the 'Humpty Dumpty' of sporting songs in the States, they learn it in the crib.  I'm not sure that's true and maybe it was a coincidence but that very evening, as if to challenge any place the game might one day take in his heart, Dom found the Lightening Seeds chant, 'Football's Coming Home' on youtube and we had several renditions of Skinner and Baddiel reminiscing about the glory days of Gazza and Shearer.  It proved very popular.  It's still in the balance but since a song is the surest way to my sons heart, I think football (aka soccer) may have out-manoeuvred baseball.  Yesterday, of course, England met the USA in South Africa for the World Cup. It was harder to get to the bottom of his allegiance being, as he is, born of English parents but holding a US passport.  The vitriol between the 2 countries seems to be at its worst, with the oil crisis in the Gulf of Mexico at the hands of BP, not that Max is aware of it.  Initially he declared he was for England but then he realized the US were dressed in blue - his favourite colour.  Difficult.  He also likes 'rainbow' he tells me - so with England's goaly in green and the USA's in orange and then of course the yellow refs - he was liking all of them too. Oli sucked his thumb on the sofa next to us and went to bed at half time.  We actually missed the US goal (or shocking English mistake, depending how you see it) and by the time the final whistle went we were involved in 'playing airports' which is the jeux de jour these days.  Max is obviously keeping his allegiance close to his chest for the time being.

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