Lush, green grass.
Warm, balmy weather.
Dust being kicked up from the tracks of football players.
It's the sight, smells and feelings of playing the sport that drive one to identify so much with the Messis and Ronaldos of the world, who'll be vying for the world's richest sporting prize in 11 days time.
What's the weather going to be like in South Africa anyways?
1 - Fabio Capello looks set to steer the England ship until 2012.
2 - USA lands safely in South Africa. USA, USA, USA!
3 - Nice pictures of South Africa's World Cup stadiums.
4 - Guess who's the new coach of Real Madrid? The Special One, Jose Mourinho. A match made in heaven, if you ask me.
5 - What's the mood in South Africa less than two weeks before the start of the Cup? The World Cup and CSR blog has an interesting take, with a view of the ongoing situation before the Cup starts from blogger Adam Boros.
What I Think I Think
Can it be? Could someone from FIFA actually be talking sense?
According to the football website The Spoiler, the annoying South African noisemaker known as the vuvuzela may be banned during the World Cup.
Joy of joys!
Look, I'm all for expressing your unique cultural qualities.
But the vuvuzela is incredibly annoying.
It's 50,000 people blowing their air horns (vuvuzelas), making a noise that can only be described as a nasty beehive descending on your head.
Remember the Confederation Cup last year? How indescribable the noise of the South African noisemaker was? You didn't hear cheering or singing or boos and yays. You heard a non-ending BZZZZZ that kept going and going and ...
According to the website:
Prior to South Africa’s warm-up friendly with Colombia yesterday, fans were warned the plastic horn was still ‘under review’ and could be banned from the World Cup if too much noise was made during the match. Apparently TV networks have been struggling to cope with the 140db onslaught during broadcasts, while players have complained of not being able to hear their manager, or even each other.
Making a point of not actually referring to vuvuzelas directly, head of the World Cup Organising Committee, Danny Jordaan, warned fans to choose the right moment to make their noise:
'If there is an order to evacuate that stadium and an announcement is made, you have to ask yourself, will everyone in that stadium hear that evacuation order?'
Jordaan also made it clear the instruments would banned if “one incident of violence [occurs] involving a vuvuzela”. We’re not sure how much damage you can do with a plastic stick, but there you go, the man has spoken.