Welcome to Partially Obstructed View. We are each restrained by the limits of our own perspective, but when we meet to share information a clearer picture of the truth can be revealed. Comments & criticisms are welcome.

Monday, 9 July 2012

First Person View - Post #300

    A milestone such as this seems as good a time as any to take a step away from the everyday talk of Toronto FC woes, MLS goings-on, and other such babble.

    Being the first weekend with only MLS action on the docket, I was afforded some time to channel surf. The lack of live action is an unusual occurrence and to my surprise as I waited for Houston and Kansas City to kick off a few bonus footy-related programs came along.

    First, the ESPN films documentary, Kicking It, aired on ESPN Classic – the story of the several teams competing in the 2006 Homeless World Cup held in Cape Town, South Africa.

    A wonderful story of hope and tragedy - redemption with a ball.

    Those precariously balanced on the margins of society given a chance at recognition as worthy pieces of the whole. Triumph and despair, it displayed some genuine moments of humanity as several young men, and a few older ones, reveled in the chance to represent their nation and restore some pride in themselves.

    I highly recommend checking it out should you get the chance, I hope one day to attend the tournament, as away from the glitz and glamour of the professional stage there is a more raw representation of what a man and a ball can mean.

    The benefits of such a venture to inspire and motivate the participants toward a better future, as enumerated at the close of the film, are consequential.

    This year’s edition of the annual tournament will be held in Mexico City at the beginning of October. For more information, to support the Canadian team, and find out more about your local chapter please visit their website.

    Then, oddly enough, a Munich Air Disaster-themed episode of Mayday on the Discovery Channel. I say oddly because as a Canadian-based show the coverage of such a distant story was unexpected.

    I’m a fan of the show, though it does make me incredibly nervous – the act of flying is far too unnatural for me to be wholly comfortable with it. After discussing the tragedy, the program shifted to the crash investigation and the plight of the disgraced pilot, trying in vain to clear his name after the German authorities labeled the fault as his own.

    Some emotional, yet entertaining viewing for a quiet Saturday afternoon.

    Perhaps even more poignant for myself and the blog, this week saw the return to the pitch of David Ferreira and Steve Zakuani, two of the players whose injuries brought about my article for The Blizzard.

    The meeting between Zakuani and Brian Mullan, exchanging shirts and a hug post-match was particularly cathartic; a rousing ovation welcomed Zakuani to the match and the closure provided by such a fortuitous schedule was palpable.

    Having some time to think, reflecting on the afternoon’s viewing and the evening’s events, I’m reminded of what it is that I love so dearly about this game. It’s not the numbers or the results, sometimes it isn’t even the action on the pitch, but the grand drama that surrounds the game.

    The power to draw attention, to change minds and focus debate, the ability to include and the opportunity to give it another go, if this ninety minutes does not go your way.

    There is always another match, always another chance. And sometimes, just sometimes, things have a way of working out perfectly, as if scripted, part of some larger plan.

    The sun will rise tomorrow.

    It’s been a lot of fun these past fourteen months, three hundred posts is less than I had hoped to produce in that time – you should see the piles of half-completed ideas on random pieces of paper and digital notes all over the place – but it’s a strong start.

    We’ve seen several features come and go, the MLS reviews have been set aside as they take far too much time in their current composition, but they should return eventually – once I get more organized; as too with the ‘Book of the Month’, which should make its triumphant return shortly, revamped as ‘From the Bookshelf’, as sticking to a book per month was far too ambitious of a game-plan.

    The weekly links too should make a comeback, as it’s a great chance to share what I’ve found interesting over the past seven days, while ideas for new features are constantly in the pipeline.

    Thanks to all who’ve stopped by, the kind words and support are very much appreciated as at times this can be a thankless task.

    MLS is heating up – as is the weather – and the restructuring of the playoff format should result in a dramatic race to the finish. The Olympic tournament begins at the end of the month. The CONCACAF Champions League follows shortly thereafter and before you know it Europe will be in full swing.

    Thanks again, please feel free to get in touch via twitter or the email address with any comments or suggestions, they’re always appreciated.

    Take care, and enjoy the football,

             James Grossi

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