Therein, lies St Denis (pronouced as Saint-Duhnee ), Montreal’s very own version of Jalan Telawi. And the fact it is located literally 10 steps away from my abode, I have accustomed myself to rowdy Friday nights. On extremely rare occasions, i belong to the rowdiness as well when time and money permits which happens quite scarcely especially the money part. Quite an interesting scene, these Friday nights. If i can ignore the disgusting experience maneuvering myself to avoid vomit-pools (this, demands a certain skill, because it was dark) , prepared before me are free amusing entertainment watching people making a fool of themselves like peeing on the roadside in broad public view, people jumping onto the window of a restaurant, and the usual people walking along the contours of the letter ‘Z’. All of them belong to the drunkards and the high category. The beauty of all this are no1) people know you are in an intoxicated state and no 2) you are in Montreal, all forms of stupidity are forgiven. Ah, one of the city’s charm.
Anyhow, one evening it was extra noisy. Cars were honking at each other ensued by roaring chants as if it was the new hip greeting style they just invented. This new elevated decibel of noise was usually tolerated if not i had a bloody physics final paper the following day so the good old patience faltered that night.
The following day, after what could have been a productive night of quiet studying ( cececece ) being ruined,i set to ask around the source of culprits. Excerpts from a live witness:
Witness: “Oh, there was a massive party in St Catherine ( a street one block from my house ), the Canadiens made it through the quarter finals. It went along perfectly in fine partying spirit until the police came and gatecrashed the party.”
And then he showed me a video footage of people burning police cars, toppling them over, smashing the windows and other creative forms of mutiny imaginable with bare hands and beer bottles.
Me: “This was the celebratory party?”
Witness: “Hey, the police ruined it and people got mad. Nobody likes party-poopers.”
Remember, this is the quarter finals.
Dont get me wrong, i personally thought that the whole violence-induced behaviour for a sports teams is and admirable thing. Let me tell you about this love affairs the Canadians have with their ice -hockey. They are strict monogamist. ALL other sports doesnt exist in their eyes. Hockey and only hockey. Imagine my mighty surprise when my dad kept me updated that Barcelona lost to Manchester in the semi-final match of Champions League. The second heartbreak came the next day when Liverpool lost to Chelsea. Argh. making the final an all English affair. Of course, i was extremely gutted first and foremost, it was already on the final stage already and i missed the whole drama?? and the fact that Manchester United is in the final. I dont like them for one and only reason: Christiano Ronaldo. The fact that legions of female population drool over his hot factor still remains a dark mystery to me. He is the most show-offy show pony in history of football, his antiques are so finessed they are worthy of an Oscar award for the category of “Most Genuine Act of Agony Upon the Slightest Contact”. Never mind that he is top scorer in this year’s edition of CL, never mind his nice biceps and polished skills,never mind that he kissed Bipasha Basu. I am sorry, that hairstyle ruined everything.
So, MU fans, before you guys start filing my mailbox with hate-mails, to my defense i would to express my utmost respect to that Scottish manager of yours, Sir Alex Ferguson. He developed the likes of Scholes, Giggs and Solksjaer and i think thats enough a reason. Decades of coaching and still winning and sweeeping trophies? *Deep bow*.
Where were we? Yes. Hockey. The nationwide madness doesnt bother me much , its the deep rooting support thats both equally intriguing and admirable i couldnt help wishing Malaysian fans are of that stature towards their own football team. Wearing the jersey to school ( the unfashionable, oversized hokey jersey mind you and to make matters worse, its in fluorescent blue and red), sticking mini-flags on cars ala Merdeka-day, honking to each other to another fan-car ( marked by a flag proudly adorned on the dashboard). On hockey nights, restaurants open till late although they still haven’t matched the ingenuity of our own mamak stalls erecting huge projector screens on important match days. I suspected its not that they haven’t thought of that idea , maybe there are some issues in the permit department.
Their unflagging support is contagious, it is very hard not to feel green with envy. I mean, on that day, if you dare say you come from Boston, the likely event of you getting beaten up is really within perspective ( the opposing team was Boston Bruins). Looking at our fans version of enthusiasm towards our own national team, i couldn’t help but shake my head in amazement at the stark contrast. I read with great interest a friend’s account on his blog regarding the subject matter: Fans Start Supporting Stop Criticizing . He pointed out that being at true blue fan is like being in a marriage. You pronounced a vow, “for better or for worse” and you stick to your colours regardless of the fact that Akmal Rizal is still allowed to play even though he looks like an overweight chicken.
Right now, i am in mourning of The Kop elimination.
P/s: The Writer welcomes updates regarding Euro 2008 because source access are hard to come by in this region and enthusiasm are generally non-existent. In the meantime, she is still waiting for Kaka to accept her marriage proposal. Dont worry, she is very patient.