Someone once coined the expression “you can’t judge a book by it’s cover.” That person was an idiot.
First impressions are everything. It’s why newspapers go for the splashy headline. It’s why people spend an inordinate amount of time figuing out what picture to use for their Facebook profile. It’s why I hear the words “curb appeal” 15 times whenever my girlfriend watches House Hunters.
The clothes you choose to wear go a long way towards making that first impression. Fair or unfair, we make snap judgments about people all the time and your choice of wardrobe reflects something about you whether you meant it or not. And you meant it.
The same principle thus applies to sports jerseys. As football gets more popular here in the states (or at least the idea of football) we are starting to see a larger, more diverse array of kits.
And just like any other clothes, I’m judging you based on your choice of soccer shirt. You made the decision to support that club (don’t tell me you just like the color, football jerseys are expensive), or at least pretend to support them. So now you have to deal with the consequences.
Below I present a handy compendium of the jerseys I see and why the people in them make me angry.
(Author’s Note: You may wear one of these shirts and also be a very knowledgable football fan and have a perfectly valid reason for supporting whichever club. I don’t want to hear it. There’s a time and a place for everything. And this is the time and place for irrational vitriol.)
Let’s get this one right out of the way. If I see you wearing a Barcelona jersey, I’m going to go ahead and assume you don’t know anything about football. Anything besides the fact that Barcelona are supposedly the best team in the world that is.
You’re a sheep. And you’ve probably bought into all that “more than a club” bullshit too.
Oh, but they represent Catalan culture you say? Sorry, they rep Qatar now. Ass.
God this one pisses me off. I see it all the time living in Boston. You think that’s an Irish shirt just because it’s got a four-leaf clover on it don’t you? DON’T YOU!?
Yes, I know Celtic FC was founded by an Irishman and has roots in Glasgow’s large Irish immigrant population. But the Masshole wearing the jersey doesn’t know that. So shut up.
Non-Mexican Guy Wearing Mexico Jersey
Oh you’re just sooo contrary aren’t you? You know what you are? You’re the guy wearing the Lebron jersey in Cleveland.
I’ll stop short of calling you anti-American. But I bet you’d steal my job if you had the chance.
I suppose a case could be made that you just respect the skill and beauty of Mexican soccer. Wait, no it couldn’t.
You know what real El Tri supporters would do if you wore that to a match? THEY WOULD THROW PEE ON YOU.
The whole idea for this diatribe came about on my recent vacation to Martha’s Vineyard. For those of you who don’t know, MV is a pleasant vacation island off the coast of Cape Cod filled during the summer months primarily (though not exclusively, hence my presence) by the supremely wealthy, where this summer I spotted 5 Chelsea jerseys in a week.
That’s 5 times more than any other kit I saw, save Real Madrid with 4. This judgment goes for you Galácticos too.
With apologies to Autoglass, if I catch you wearing that goddamn blue thing I’m just going to assume you’re a priveleged snob.
That or you didn’t start watching football until 2004.
You could probably buy your own club. Why would you choose to support this one?
I saw a 9-year old boy wearing a Terry shirt and I was so angry I cried.
You think marijuana is super cool. You don’t smoke it all that often unless someone else buys it but man, drugs right?
Maybe you really are a stoner. But you’re a dumb one, because most stoners are paranoid and don’t like to attract attention. Don’t you think wearing bright orange sort of defeats the purpose?
Any David Beckham Jersey
You really think you’re hot stuff don’t you? And it hasn’t been raining, so I’m going to go ahead and assume that is a massive amount of product in your hair.
You could have just gone for the England kit but you decided to go with the player name that most fits how good looking your mom says you are. Or alternately, don’t even act like you gave a rat’s ass about the LA Galaxy before Goldenballs arrived.
If you also have whatever hairstyle Mr. Posh is sporting at the time, I’m literally seconds away from throwing up on you.
Lest you think I’m not an equal opportunity slanderer, I give you full permission to go up to any mook you see wearing the Azzurri top and ask him to name one player on the current roster.
9 times out of 10 you’ll get a loud, angry reaction that you and I both know will only be masking shame.
Or ask what those 4 stars on the crest represent. They don’t know? Surprise, surprise, surprise.
Tell them to put on one of those “Ciao Bella” Coca-Cola shirts and get lost.
You are just the worst aren’t you? Let me guess who your other favorite sports teams are:
The Yankees? The Lakers? The Cowboys?
Ding. Ding. Ding.
I’d call you a front runner. But that’s not even an insult to you is it?
I suppose there’s a slight chance you might just be a Sikh. But I think there are other ways I could figure that out.
Even if you’re English, you’re not even from Manchester are you?
You are from Manchester, and therefore have never seen the sun. That or you have an unhealthy love of Oasis.
Quick, name me one other Bundesliga club. Just one. Nah, didn’t think so.
I can beat you up.
Is this a joke?
Now you’re just trying to piss me off.