Et Tu, Etas Unis? Soccer and the American Dream
. He gets his desired response: Our subject raises his middle finger until he disappears behind a copse of evergreens. A car door slams, an engine revs and tires screech in the manner of someone who enjoys a good Hollywood exit. Those remaining chuckle and exchange their boots for flats while toweling off sweat rivulets and loose grass. I recline beside an exhausted Peruvian who offers an unsolicited answer to my internal question: Bozos?
"It's because we play like bozos. You make a mistake, it's OK. We already knew you were a Bozo because you play with us."
I expressed incredulity that my companion, in all his Peruvian bombast, would submit to the moniker Bozo.
"I'm Peruvian, man. We don't make mistakes."
The Bozos, young and old, gather weekly to play on a local pitch, a tradition that remains unsullied for over 30 years. In Italy, Ethiopia, or Argentina, weekly gatherings for "footie" congregate in every city, town, and prison. But this is the United States, home of Lebron James and Tom Brady and Miguel Cabrera. This is the same country where soccer celebrates its 100th year in utero. The Bozos are an anomaly, a forgettable eccentricity only replicated by deviants across the nation.