Love Bites

It's hard to say what's funnier about the Luis Suarez shoulder chomping incident yesterday: a) the fact that the referee, Mexican Marco Rodriguez, is known back home as Dracula due to a resemblance to the lead actor in a TV series about said bloodsucking vampire, or b) that a Uruguayan told the media after the game that Chiellini had put that bite mark on himself before the match so that he could accuse Suarez of having put it there afterwards.


The latter is a pretty novel thought, although things like the question of how exactly he arranged with Suarez to bite him in exactly the right spot comes to mind.

I have to go with the Dracula deal since, although I've never seen the show it undoubtedly has, in addition to artery-draining mythical creatures a) absurdly well endowed young women showing acres of cleavage, b) a guy in a bee costume and c) trumpeters - all things I really enjoy.

Runner up would be the unidentified Uruguayan who, as Chiellini was trying to show the bite mark to Rodriguez, was trying to pull the Italian's shirt back over it. 

Adios, Luis. The fact that you were ever allowed on the pitch is a testament to the eternal patience the game has with insanely gifted men with limited amounts of self control, but there really are limits and you've arrived.

Honorable mention goes to the Norwegian guy who put down roughly five bucks on Luis Suarez biting somebody during the World Cup and thereby won himself 5,600 Krone which, I'm reliably informed, is actual money of some kind.

We're still trying to sort out the rumors from Brazil regarding the American Outlaws charter which couldn't get permission to take off due to some incomplete paperwork, causing some members to be stranded in an airport for a reported 33 hours. Making it worse, allegedly, was the report that AO leadership - presumably the people best-suited to straighten it out - cadged themselves a ride on the USSF charter, leaving the members to sort out the problem on their own while they partied back at the hotel.

I'll leave aside the fact that a USSF official tore me a new one during a phone conversation last fall loftily informing me that AO "is not an official USSF supporters group" and that the handful of Lincoln Nebraska guys who run the thing for their own personal benefit "never" get anything of value from USSF.

Except, apparently, free plane rides.

I've got nothing against the Outlaws; in fact, I think they're great. They just need to hold elections for the leadership - maybe there's somebody who doesn't live in Lincoln who could do a better job running the thing - have a meaningful Board of Directors with real authority over operations and financial transparency.

With AO pocketing  a reported $500 commission for every travel package they book with TenDot,  they've outgrown the model they employed when all they were about was raising beer money. 

I am normally very excited when a lower division club does well in the Lamar Hunt US Open Cup. NASL, USLPro, whatever. Those wins are what makes Cup competitions the world over exciting and if first division teams don't like it then they should play stronger lineups at the early stages.

That said, on behalf of soccer fans across the fruited plain, thank you Philadelphia Union for last night's 2-1 victory over the neoCosmos of New York, who by doing so spared us having to listen to a bunch of nonsense.

No Hope:

A while back I got in a little trouble for writing that someday we'd see Hope Solo on an episode of Cops yelling at the police while they were stuffing her old man into a squad car.

And when I'm wrong, I'm wrong, and I am the first to say so and apologize: it was Solo herself who got dragged off to sample the municipal hospitality.

In case you missed it, last weekend America's Sweetheart got into a drunken brawl with family members with whom she had recently reconciled after a period of estrangement due, reportedly, to her behavior. The police were called, injuries were observed and Ms. Solo spent the weekend in jail, from whence she is now released pending trial under court orders to a) stay away from family members and b) stay sober.

She was "excused" from duty with the national team, which was getting ready to play France, due to "family obligations" which is apparently a euphemism for "has to go whop up on her cousins". Or something.

To be fair, Ms. Solo, through her attorney, denies the allegations.

Oh, Mexico

Many Mexico fans were gleeful when FIFA declined to take action against the team as punishment for the "puto" chant. During their last match it was heard louder than ever as they celebrated the FIFA-granted right to offend gay people.

FIFA has also refused to intervene with the Russian and Croation fans who've been using Nazi symbols and throwing bananas as well. Apparently Mexico doesn't mind that kind of company.

I should have taken into account the fact that FIFA wasn't going to start deducting points or closing games during a World Cup. That would be the headline.

But if you think this means that they've decided to allow gay baiting on an ongoing basis, you're mistaken.

So please, enjoy the opportunity to act like six year olds who have figured out that they wo't be spanked for using naughty words and continue to ignore the fact that the mark of grown up people in a truly civilized modern society is that we go to great lengths to avoid using words which some of our fellows find hurtful and offensive.

FIFA President Sepp Blatter has decided to cancel plans to personally award the Cup to the winning tam after the final match.

You'll recall that he broke with protocol by passing on participating in the opening ceremonies, but FIFA had contiued to insist that he would make the trophy presentation himself. They had discovered in both Germany and South Africa that the fans were too busy cheering the winners to make a quick pivot to booing and he got in and out almost before anyone noticed.

But during the opening ceremonies, as Blatter watched from a private box, fans hurled abuse at him anyway, and so he'll watch the ceremony once again from his box.

The lovely Gisele Bundchen, Brazilian supermodel and spouse of New England Patriot QB Tom Brady will do the honors.

As long as there aren't too many Jets fans in attendance, the boos for her are likely to be minimal.