THE 1998 World Cup is known for its haircuts; starting from dyeing and cutting geometrical shapes, the football fans and footballers themselves had gone through tremendous changes to their hairdo just to make an impression among their fans that season.
2002 was no less fun, with Ronaldo bringing in his trademark half-baldy style to chill up the fans (which actually became a fashion statement that year); we got to see the birth of an icon whose boom would later turn out to be an infamous bust. 2006 too was better than this World Cup in the sense that unlike this year, that year too had trademark haircuts.
Still, throughout this World Cup, the avid football fans have gone through rounds of make-up and hairstyle frenzies just to prove their support for their team. Some are even known to have been saving their hairs for a year just so that they could crop their hairs to unbelievable dimensions to prove their unwavering affection for their boys from the stands this year.
It even felt as if the fans themselves were more dedicated to their team than the players themselves given that half of the all-time favourite players of this World Cup failed to turn up owing to injuries they themselves are to be blamed for. We agree; it was a terrible tournament for entertainment, a great one for not-so-terrible haircuts.
The real story was the amazing artistry demonstrated in proliferation by the accompanying hair styling engineers and consultants who worked their way to create this frenzy. Mohawks, dreadlocks, braids, quilt designs, shaven heads, shades of green, yellow, white and red have taken over the stands along with incredible face colourings and the vuvuzela this year; much to our amazement.
Ghana's Vorsah and his commendable haircut was a sure treat this season; which was also punctured with the blame on Torres's hair for his poor performance and with the fire on Messy for just not bringing in anything special. Starting from insanely huge blond afros to Gervinho's semi baldy cut of the year, this World Cup was a "different" watch altogether.
Tit or tat, even though the players this year have failed to bring up something worth watching this year, the fans have done their job in their place; that is, except the Brazil-Netherlands match (the Argentina-Germany match was no entertainment; it looked like a cock-fight between a sprinter and a cripple).
By Eshpelin Mishtak
SUPERSTITION? What is it? According to the dictionary, superstition means a widely held but unjustified belief in supernatural causation leading to certain consequences of an action or event, or a practice based on such a belief. Well nowadays it seems that people come up with superstition for every situation. Right now, the biggest issue coming up is superstition in football. Sometimes, us fans tend to justify their teams losing by relating it to something going wrong while they were watching the game. During a game fans may have a particular seating arrangement based on a previous win. Say they sit in particular places where they were sitting in a game where their team won and then followed that example and hoped that seating in that place would mean that their team would win.
But if the team loses they might make excuses like someone was not where they were supposed to be or say a new person came and messed up the whole arrangement. Why do we do this? It is human nature to justify everything we do. Fans may also believe that they shouldn't talk about their teams winning just in case, as we Bangalis say 'kufa lagbe.' There are some crazy superstitious ideas when it comes to football. As it happens, I know a family who seem to be bent on believing that if they get a call from a particular person on the day of the match, their team will lose. So they make sure that the person doesn't call the whole day until the game is over. It's just hard for the fans to accept the fact that their team has lost so they find it soothing to blame it on someone else or something supernatural. It's just how it is; you can't help it. Yes, the people who aren't fans of that specific team will think it's crazy that the fans come up with random excuses like a phone call or the colour of a t-shirt affecting how the team performed. It's not the teams' fault that they lost, it's the random superstitions.
So how can other people besides fans deal with the superstitions or even try to understand them? They can't because they don't support the team and don't understand what it feels like to see their team lose. But it can be assumed that everyone in the world, who is a sport fan, will have some crazy superstition that can explain the way the match went. Now that the World Cup is coming to an end and the final inching ever closer, the fans of the teams that are playing will find even crazier superstitions or supernatural beliefs to hold on to. So that whichever team loses, they will find closure in the fact that something that they did was what caused their team to lose and not how the players played. So what can we do about fans superstitions? We don't do anything and just safely accept the fact that there will always be superstitious fans around making excuses and that will make them happy and everyone else can just deal with it.
IMAGINE waking up one morning and discovering that you have achieved everything you ever dreamed of. Would you be happy? Would you be sad that you missed the journey? While most of us might never actually have to face such a situation, as 25 year old Lexi Smart trips and falls towards the asphalt, she ruminates on her mousy hair, snaggly teeth, dead-end job, and her father's funeral the following day. When she wakes up, she is 28, beautiful, rich, and successful...and she doesn't remember any of it. Turns out that she has amnesia, which has wiped her memory clean of everything that has happened in the last three years.
And what eventful three years they have been! Imagine her shock when she discovers that she can actually afford those Luis Vuitton bags she once drooled over in magazines, that her cute little sister is now this rebellious teenager, and that she's married to this Greek god of a business tycoon. Once the head rush of the discovery wears off, Lexi realises that the adage of 'all that glitters' holds true as she steps into her office to find that her old mates hate her; that her sister is flirting with a life of crime...and when this sexy rumpled stranger walks up to her and claims to be her secret lover, things get really interesting.
Plot-wise, this reads like 13 going on 30, with a few more details and back-stories thrown into the mix. Kinsella's style is cheery and funny, and makes for a relaxing read, and the characters are fairly relatable. Reason to read this book? Well, was there ever anything so underrated in this world of pedantic Booker-prize winners as a light fluffy romance you can read and discard without analysing it to pieces? Till next week...
By Sabrina F Ahmad
| Issues | The Daily Star Home|
© 2010 The Daily Star