Lindsey Berg Blog

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Grown Men Crying at a Basketball Game

I promised you that I would talk about Italian Basketball games a little.  A couple weeks ago I was back in Italy in one of my favorite cities, Bologna.  It is a little big city.  Rome, Milan, and Florence could be compared to NY, Chicago, and LA.  Bologna could be compared to Minneapolis. Bologna is also a huge basketball city in Italy.  It is not normal for one city to have 2 A1 (the highest league) teams.  But Bologna does, Fortitudo and Virtus.  And there are 2 separate fan clubs, half of the city is with Fortitudo and the other half with Virtus.  Every year they have 2 derbys and they are crazy...probably one of the most entertaining games each year. No matter how good one team or the other always ends up a battle.  Unfortunately I missed that game...but I got to see another Fortitudo game.  They were on I think a 7 game loosing streak. Not a good look at all.  

Let me go back for a second and talk a little about the fans.  They are is hard to use any other word...maybe die hard, lunatics...I think you get the picture.  Grown men and women dressed up yelling constantly at the refs, players, and coaches.  Running up to the barriers around the court waving their hands and yelling words I can't write on my blog.  
Whether they know or understand the game, it doesn't matter they will still scream and yell. They even enjoy yelling at the American players the most.  Luckily I understand Italian so I know what they are all saying.  And this trip I actually decided to put one Italian in their place for screaming about my friend.  Throughout the whole game he was speaking of how bad the Americans were, and that Americans are s%$^%%t and so on and so forth. After the game was finished he decided to ask me if I had a piece of gum.  I told him I do have one but it is American so he probably won't like it.  He then went on for 10 min apologizing and trying to explain himself.  I joked around with him for a little bit acting like I really was mad...then gave in a gave him a piece of orbitz.  I bet he will look around the next time he decides to speak bad about Americans.

The game that I was at ended up going into 3 overtimes.  It was crazy.  The game started at 830 pm and ended at almost 12.  I was starving and my back hurt from sitting in horrible benches. But it was definitely worth waiting til the end.  The team and more so the fans were so happy to see the team finally win, they knocked down security and stormed the court.  I also spotted at least half a dozen grown men crying.  As an athlete I understand how emotional it can get, and I have definitely cried after a few games.  But I just don't understand the fans crying...
But gotta hand it to the Italians for enjoying, respecting, and loving the game...

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