Monday, May 2, 2011

Futbol faux pas in Buenos Aires

I committed a capital offense in the eyes of the sports fans in my homestay this weekend.  To be fair, I had no idea what I was doing, but ignorance is no excuse.  Let me explain: Saturday afternoon, I went to La Boca, a neighborhood known for its futbol team, Boca Juniors, and I purchased some shorts with their logo as a souvenir (their colors are also the same as Trinity's).

When I got home, I put the shorts on and went up to dinner with my giant homestay family (besides the two parents in their sixties, there are 13 foreign students living in the house, and about 7 of us show up to dinner every night).  My host mother asked me what I had done that day, and I told her, in my broken Spanish, that I had done some shopping in La Boca (also a renowned tourist destination).  She asked what I had purchased, and I proudly indicated the shorts.

Big mistake.  She gasped (a bit dramatically, I thought at the time), and hurriedly told me that my rather gruff host father was a fan of the rival team, River Plate.  essentially, it's like someone walked into my house sporting a Yankees hat, and telling me that they just liked the color.

Boca Juniors and River Plate have a rivalry similar to Red Sox/Yankees, except it's even more intense, since they are both located within the city limits of Buenos Aires - imagine the Red Sox and Yankees residing in the same town (somewhere in Connecticut maybe), and how that would intensify the rivalry.

I promised my host mother I wouldn't wear the Boca Juniors paraphernalia in the house anymore, she agreed to hide my logos from my host father, and it was a happy ending for all.

[Sorry this had only a tangential connection to baseball and the Red Sox; I'm working with what I've got.]

1 comment:

  1. The truth is that River Plate is one of the most successful teams in Argentine football. They have won the Primera División a record 33 times; their last domestic title was the 2008 Clausura. In addition, they have won five international titles, including two Copa Libertadores, one Intercontinental Cup, one Supercopa Sudamericana, and one Copa Interamericana. Their success in the 1990s had led IFFHS to name them ninth in their All-Time Club World Ranking (and first in the Americas). So we can say they are a pretty big deal. I remember I rented furnished apartments in buenos aires near it when I was in Argentina, and every Sunday (the day of the game) there was joy and happiness in the atmosphere. I loved it!