Saturday, May 22, 2010

Ten reasons why I can't attend another soccer-themed exhibition

1.    I suffer from a peculiar affliction: every time I see a soccer ball my mind immediately goes blank
2.    I have soccer practice on – my version of soccer practice involves practicing at not watching anything that is related to soccer
3.    I have another soccer-themed exhibition to view
4.    My mind still hasn’t kicked back into action since I viewed the last soccer-themed play/dance/exhibition
5.    I am not actually in Joburg – I am in Grahamstown reviewing other soccer cultural products at the National Arts Festival
6.    I have a soccer ball attached to my head and I can’t see anything – absurd but could happen if you did a header and the ball burst
7.    I will be there the moment that a sports event becomes the be all and end all of my life (this is perhaps a bit too truthful)
8.    I was there, didn’t you see me: I was the one with a giant soccer ball on my head (see 6)
9.    I was there among a crowd of German tourists with makarapas on their heads
10.    Sorry, I have to stay home and crotchet  Bafana Bafana scarves for myself and their three other fans

Soccer season certainly hasn’t translated into a go-slow period for cultural producers or institutions; since returning to the office after a three week holiday I have been inundated with invitations to view plays, dance performances and art and photographic exhibitions. Of course, almost all of them are soccer themed: catering for that large group of soccer fans who also happen to be art lovers - NOT.
Ok, they are not all dreadful: my introduction to this peculiar ‘genre’ shall we call it on Friday night at the Market Theatre wasn’t too painful. It was a provocative interdisciplinary piece titled Off-side Rules, which I will be reviewing for the paper next week. It mostly undermined all the hullabaloo around the World Cup, showing it to be nothing but an expedient political sham used to paper over the cracks in our society – that’s the really oversimplified version; in reality it was a challenging piece that  reversed societal conventions or rules.   But frankly my interest in cultural products that engage with soccer is at an all time low: I might be proven wrong but I feel like when you have seen one of them you have seen them all. This is a bit problematic given my Inbox is full of invitations for soccer-themed events. Hence I devised ten reasons why I can’t attend exhibitions during this soccer mad season.

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