We had an awesome experience three nights ago at the Greek Club in Arusha, where most of the interns from the ICTR came to watch the United States v. England game. One of the great things of the ICTR is that people are from all over the world; literally, there are people from the United Kingdom, Ireland, Tanzania, Kenya, Germany, Australia, France, and Canada. I’m sure I’ll meet people from more countries, but these are the people that I’ve met thus far.
At the Greek Club, the crowd was 50/50 American/English. The Brits were definitely more dressed up than we were, wearing their face paint and their English soccer [I refuse to call it football] shirts. However, while we failed in uniform, we made up in vocals.
At the very beginning of the game, the English supporters were far louder than we were. They were led by my friend Ben, who is from London. However, not many people know this, but I, too, can be incredibly loud at sporting events if needed. It is one of the few talents that I have. USA!
Therefore, I started leading the American contingent at the club in our cheers against the Brits:
Here are some of the chants that I and others [my friends Cam, Max, Brook, and Jeff] led:
1. USA! USA! USA! [classic]
2. World War II, World War II, World War II! [my personal favorite]
3. Yes we can! Yes we can! [Brook’s favorite chant]
4. Quack! Quack! Quack! [From the Mighty Ducks movies, which we thought was hilarious]
5. A tie is a win! A tie is a win! [My second favorite chant, but this chant caused a lot of debate among the interns of whether we were insulting America.]
6. 1776! 1776! [Didn’t really catch on]
Also throughout the game, we also sang the full versions to the following songs:
1. I’m proud to be an American.
2. The Star Spangled Banner
3. This land is my land.
4. My country tis of thee. – In response to the British national anthem. The music is the same to both songs.
One interesting note was that most of the Canadians and the Tanzanians rooted for England. Most Canadians chose to root for England, because they are under the Commonwealth which makes sense; but we Americans still noted that they were traitors to North America. I spoke with a couple of the Tanzanians, who said that they rooted for England, because they liked the English Premier League [one guy was wearing a Manchester United jersey]. I found this interesting, because England was particularly oppressive to Tanzania prior to Tanzania’s independence.
Anyway, we all had a great time, and after the game, the Brits and Americans shook hands. I told Ben and others that I would root for England in any game during the World Cup except against the U.S. [if we met again]; and they told us that they would root for the U.S., likewise. I’m starting to like this World Cup thing.