Monthly Archives: February 2013

How Claudia Estela got her groove back

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The season started out promising. I had a personal-best 154 during the first night. It was followed by a couple more 100+ games. Normally, I’d be relishing in my handiwork. But this was the first night of league — the night that establishes averages and handicaps.

I had just single-handedly screwed my team. That is unsustainable bowling for me. There’s no way I could bowl that well or that consistently over the course of the league.

And I was right. After that initial night, I began my downward slide. My average kept dropping: 125, 120, 116, 110. Some nights, I struggled to hit 90.

I’d been wallowing in a bowling funk and dragging the team down. After five weeks, were were steadfastly in second-to-last place.

But last night, I got the bowling equivalent of Taye Diggs in Jamaica. Well, not quite (not at all, really), but I did get my groove back (and a bonus new high score).

And that’s important because the best part about bowling is the strut back after a strike. Right, Jesus?

PHOTO: My latest scores. Note the NINE strikes and SIX spares – that’s half my game.

US soccer missing that love spark

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I’ve wondered for some time now why there’s such resistance to a full-bodied embrace of soccer/football in the United States. I think I’m finally able to articulate my hypothesis.

Prostitutes.

A number of current events stories in recent weeks/months has led me to the conclusion that America will never be as enthusiastic about soccer; never deify their league-leading players; never bring communities/societies to standstills as the rest of the world does until it has the full support of its sex workers. And since prostitution is illegal in the U.S. (save Nevada), it makes logical sense that soccer enthusiasts will remain pocketed throughout the country.

My proof:

  • Nigeria’s women of the night/day/mid-afternoon provided extra incentive by offering a full week of free sex if the men’s national team won the African Cup of Nations. They did.
  • Brazil’s associated sex workers are business savvy women. They’re preparing themselves for Confederations Cup 2013 and World Cup 2014 with free language classes. Must diversify.
  • In Greece, a couple of bordellos have emerged as the main sponsors/saviors for some amateur teams. Never fear; pros to the rescue.

In this light, the Mexican contingent that was sent to the 2011 Copa América was only attempting to maintain positive soccer-prostitute international relations.

Disclaimer: This is neither pro- nor anti- advocacy, just well-observed facts.

PHOTO: Credit REUTERS/Wolfgang Rattay

What?! You think this is a game?!!

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Yep. That’s kinda how we all feel, Maza.

Yesterday, during the hexagonal kickoff match against Jamaica in Estadio Azteca, Mexico put on such a lackluster show and failed to capitalize on its home-field advantage. You’re playing in the clouds practically (7,900-foot elevation)!! MAKE THEM RUN.

It got so bad that fans started booing our own team and cheering every time Jamaica had the ball. I’m sure the captain didn’t appreciate any of that.

We scraped by with 1 point, by the grace of God. Read:  By the blessings of Jesus.

Jose de Jesus Corona was the one person responsible for keeping Mexico, the regional leader, from falling oh-so-hard from grace. Aside from that spectacular diving save, Chuy had a few more moments where he punched out incoming shots and smothered balls during one-on-one breakaways.

Good stats, of course, for any goalie. But not when that goalie represents a team that has been on the rise. Get your shit together, guerreros. This isn’t a game anymore. It’s a fight to the World Cup.

PHOTO: Mexico captain Francisco ‘MAZA’ Rodriguez flipped off camera while Corona gives interview. Irony, here, is that Corona is the loose cannon you should watch out for off-field antics.

Hexagonal resource: Mexico trading cards

Today is the official start to the CONCACAF Hexagonal — the Road to Brazil 2014. The six regional teams are all facing each other over the course of the year in their qualifying run toward the World Cup.

February 6 Matches

Honduras – United States
Panama – Costa Rica
Mexico – Jamaica

Unless you’ve been following every single move the Mexican teams have been making these last few months, today’s game will offer some familiar and newbie faces. Well-known players include CHICHARITO, Giovani DOS SANTOS, Andrés GUARDADO, Maza RODRIGUEZ, Aldo DE NIGRIS, and Carlos SALCIDO. Of course, my boy Chuy CORONA will also be keeping riff raff out of Azteca’s nets.

But the squad that’s playing Jamaica also includes a ton of young blood that has been called up to the main team. There are handful of U23 players who debuted during 2011 Copa America (and some who were suspended during the prostitution robbery mess). Plus, some members were part of the winning squad during the 2011 Pan American Games, and 2012 Toulon Tournament. And, by my count, there are nine Olympic gold medalists. I’m surprised they found room on this roster for Chicharito. What am I saying? There’s always room for Chicharito.

So here are my trading cards for four players. A few I know you’ve seen before and will likely see play today. Some may be brand new information. I’d do more, but who has that kind of time. Perhaps over the course of the games …

♦♦♦


Age: 22
Plays for Villareal CF, Spain’s Segunda Division
Mexico: 2012 London Olympics, 2011 Pan American Games, 2011 Copa America

♦♦♦

Age: 23
Plays for CF Monterrey, Liga MX
Mexico: 2012 London Olympics, 2011 Pan American Games, 2011 Copa America

♦♦♦

mfabian_tc

Age: 23
Plays for Guadalajara, Liga MX
Mexico: 2012 London Olympics, 2012 Toulon Tournament, 2011 Copa America*

♦♦♦

csaucedo_tc

Age: 31
Plays for Tijuana Xoloitzcuincles de Caliente, Liga MX, Apertura champions
Mexico: Played 45 minutes during Jan. 30 friendly against Denmark

Por ser día de tu santo …

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I just want to give a huge shout-out to my TRI-ista-in-arms and occasional running buddy, who celebrates a birthday today. And she timed it well — right before the start of the CONCACAF hexagonal stage. There’ll hopefully be much to celebrate today and in the coming months on the road toward Brazil 2014.

Just 493 days left!!

Los pajarillos cantan qué?