America ended up losing the soccer game on an own goal—how’s that for anticlimactic?! The goalie went up to catch the ball on a corner kick and somehow got off balance and fell into the goal. Dangit.
During the match, I came to be referred to as “she” and “her”, as in “see her on the outside” and “she’s open”. Except for that one guy who started randomly calling me “Marge” and it took a couple of plays for me to realize that I should react to that name. I can’t blame the guys, because “she” is definitely easier to say than “Margaux” which also sounds similar to “Mario” and “that girl over there”.
One guy in particular on the not-American team was not having a good day and decided to take it out on the rest of us. We’ll call him Luigi. When Luigi’s teammate missed a shot on goal that rolled over towards Luigi’s side of the field, he could have passed it nicely back to the America team goalie like any normal player. He didn’t. Instead, he booted the ball clear across the field and out of bounds.
During another play, Luigi tripped over his own shoelaces while dribbling towards the goal and one of his shoes came off. Of course, he very loudly tried to blame it on the defender who was a solid meter away at the time. And then an older player yelled across the field, “It’s because your shoelaces are made in Belarus!” To be fair, I’m not actually sure if that’s an insult or not.
Other than some hotheads it was a super fun game, and we had a potluck barbecue afterwards which was delicious. Everyone loved my (very American) chocolate chip cookies. Just don’t tell them that I used store bought Trader Joe’s cookie dough…