A disgruntled librarian packs it up and leaves fabulous New York City behind,
going on random global adventures,
while simultaneously promoting literacy
and spreading the love of the written word.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

eye on sports: rugby world cup

you can't go anywhere without
running into some
argentine hooligans
i bet you have always thought to yourself, “self, i wish that miss dewey decimal would commentate on more sporting events!”  (and by more you mean at least one)  well dear blog readers, you are in luck because today i am going to expand my charming brand of witty observations into the realm of rugby.  hold onto your hats!  (hats are something that people sometimes wear when playing sports, but not so much in rugby where hats are not typically implemented ... are you witnessing this sporty knowledge?!)

SO, here in new zealand everyone is very excited for the rugby world cup.  i am supporting the new zealand national team, the All Blacks.  i support this team for the following reasons:

          1.  they do a maori war dance called a "haka" at the beginning of each match to 
          intimidate their opponents.  it's pretty badass and i like dancing.

          2.  they wear all black, which is much more sophisticated than the typical garish color 
         combinations that many sports team have on their uniforms.

          3.  i already own an All Blacks hoodie that the bolshevik purchased for me the last time    
          he was in new zealand.  this is part of his attempt to get me to like sports by appealing to 
          my interest in accessories and outerwear (i now own three, yes THREE, sports related 

waldo watches the maori boats row
into town on the big screen
yup, getting my support of your team is that easy.

moving on!

when we arrived in auckland it was a few days before the opening game of the RWC and the excitement was palpable.  every store window was somehow tying in rugby and the All Blacks into their displays, there were signs all over the city advertising different opening day events, etc.   even though i really don't care about sports, i found myself getting excited too.

on the day of the opening game, there was a huge event in the city center where hundreds of maori tribesmen rowed into the harbor on huge maori war boats.  sadly, we couldn't actually get anywhere near the harbor since there were so many people there.  but we were able to catch glimpses of it on the huge screens they had in the middle of the street.  this was followed by a maori parade down the main street which we also couldn't see because there were so many people.  it was around this time that we decided that maybe it was best to just get to the stadium since we couldn't actually see any of the events that were going on where we were.

i join in a haka
at the stadium there was an opening ceremony that included a long dance number that was not dissimilar to the interpretive dance numbers that they used to have at the oscars.  there were hundreds of people running around the pitch (that means field!) in loin cloths, carrying shields and spears, and weird metallic sailboats raced across the grass.  then another hundred or so dancers came out dressed as rugby players and were dancing with a young blonde boy who was then dramatically raised about 75 feet in the air as he tried to grab hold of a gigantic inflatable rugby ball floating overhead.  this part was actually quite cool, although it made me wonder how this kid's parents ever signed off on this as it seemed highly dangerous.

then there were some fireworks and a maori guy blew a large horn and then eventually some guys came out and played a game of rugby.

sonny bill williams gets help
putting on his super tight jersey
rugby is very similar to american football except they don't stop the clock every five seconds.  they just keep playing, which is nice because it keeps the game moving.

the highlight of this particular game was when sonny bill williams' jersey was ripped in a scrum (big pile of sweaty rugby men) and it exposed his very cool maori tribal tattoo.  then there was some lovely footage on the big screen of him getting assistance in putting on a new jersey.  (these jerseys are super tight)  turns out he's totally cut.
miss dewey d
reporting to you live from
the new zealand rugby world cup

oh, and the All Blacks beat tonga.  GO THE MIGHTY ALL BLACKS!

and thus concludes my short-lived career as a sporty commentator.

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