04 October 2005

Rugby in Cardiff

Originally uploaded by doppio macchiato.
We only watched the match for about 5 minutes, but that's all it took to understand completely why the Brits make fun of American football. The play you see above is a set 'throw in' play. I don't know the real, technical term, but I do know that the guy being held up in the air (and the guy holding him up) are both designated to do so - was told a lovely story of a 2 hour train argument between Welsh folks about who should play these roles.

In Wales, by the way, Rugby is the sport of the people and is taken very seriously. In England, by contrast, football (i.e. real football, what Americans call 'soccer') is the working class sport and Rugby is seen as a bit of an upper class game. In Wales that's reversed. It's funny: from the States, 'UK', 'Great Britain', and 'England' all seem to be roughly the same place 'over there'. It took about a week here to grasp the fact that wales is not England; they are utterly different nations (literally).

As a side note, if you check out this photo group on Flickr you'll see why I'm now convinced that the convergence between mobile phones and digital cameras makes sense.

1 comment:

Kate said...

I, being completely self involved and (mostly) American, pretty much entirely consider the UK all one big, similar place. Interesting to hear your experiences and the contrasts.

Jeff and I went to see my friend Casey's rugby team play about a year and a half ago, and I'm ashamed to say, we were so lost that I we spent most of the time asking each other if someone (on either team) had scored or if the yelling from the sidelines was just general enthusiasm. I ended up calling Dad to get a rundown on the basic gist of what we were looking at, but he wasn't there, so we remained uninformed, and decided to start clapping when those around us did the same. Sheep.

In fairness to us, the confusion was (as we learned later) partly due to the fact that Casey's team was getting so thorougly clobbered by the time we got there that they had given up trying to win and had decided to help the other team reach a league record for most points in a season.

I also learned that day that equally important to the match is the team drinking, singing about relatively naughty things, and throwing up in buckets afterward. No lie.