Saturday, July 08, 2006

Letter from abroad

I'm happy because I just received an e-mail from a friend of mine who lives in Berlin -- she stayed with me for a week a few years back during her first trip to New York.

She writes, "Dear Bill, How are you? You are in soccer fever? Whole Germany is a little bit crazy because of the World Cup. But it's a good atmosphere because many Germans are friendly and cooler, not so serious. On the other side I'm very happy when the World Cup is over and the city gets more quiet."

She is such a great soul, and I had a lot of fun having her as my guest in my old cramped apartment in Astoria, Queens. It was strange meeting someone so young who was so well-traveled and cosmopolitan out of the box, as most young Euros tend to be these days.

And it is a pleasure to report that I am, in fact, in soccer fever -- or at least I feel the excitement as I walk down the street and see crowds of Spanish, French, Portuguese, Germans, Brazilians, Africans, etc., huddled around storefronts with TVs watching the game very excitedly. And that's not even counting how busy it is in Queens, where over half the pop is foreign-born (Caribbean, Chinese, Korean, Czech, Greek, Mexican, Itals, etc).

World Cup summer in New York is so delightfully fucking polyglot, more than imagination permits (like that Star Wars cantina), and it makes me feel like a lazy, insular sod for being so poorly traveled.

Uncle Owen, this droid has a bad motivator!