Promoters have tried to get Americans interested in soccer for decades, only to fail in so many ways. First, they tried Pele, and while he sparked some mild interest, he soon became little more than a side note in our country's sports history. Then they tried Beckham, but his arrival was overshadowed by tabloids, fragrance deals and an 80-pound distraction with a reality show named Victoria. After their efforts, the best they could garner was being listed as "Something That White People Like" (or, at least, like the concept of). With the US making a name for themselves at the World Cup in South Africa, and its citizens actually cheering the team on at sports bars around the country, everyone was sure that soccer would take its rightful place in our hearts just as it has in every other country on the planet. And that may well have happened, if not for a little phenomenon called vuvuzela. And what is vuvuzela? It's a cheap, plastic, extremely loud horn that South Africans play at matches, so loud, in fact, that it drowns out commentators by producing the insane buzzing sound you hear over televised games.
Even babies can't resist the lure of vuvuzela.
And Americans freaking love them! We love them so much, we have completely forgotten about old what's their faces out there kicking that ball around. After getting involved with the most exciting, all inclusive world sports event known to man, all we care about is an overgrown kazoo. We're like a toddler who just received a new, state-of-the art toy, except we want to play with the box.
So why have we become entranced by this novelty's siren song? Well, Americans like loud and obnoxious - how else would you describe the success of Bill O'Reilly, Limp Bizkit and Sam Kinison? The vuvuzela only caters to our collective need to drown one another out, like we've done through our political punditry, morning DJs and video games. Go into any bar in a college town on any given weekend and you'll find a bunch of drunk meatheads screaming the lyrics to "Sweet Caroline" as it plays on the jukebox. Even our books are loud, as anyone who has ever read beat poetry would attest to. We are a nation that rewards unyielding, abrasive assholes, and when we see that others have found a newer, better way to be loud as hell, we embrace it. It's happened before - look at how popular anime and Roberto Benigni became.
All I can say is, thank god I'm not a sports fan, because I pity the fools that have to sit in front of the jerks that manage to sneak a vuvuzela into the game as they try to eat their hot dogs and $8 beers in peace. You don't think it's gonna happen? Give it another month.