WORLD CUP JULY 7, 2010
There was nothing German in my grandparents house.
My grandfather would spit when we passed by the Mercedes dealer near our town. My grandmother -- an otherwise incredibly tolerant woman -- lost the ability to forgive on the day the last letter arrived from the old country.
I began this World Cup pulling for the United States and England. I assumed Spain would win. I had spent the last two years watching the EPL and La Liga every weekend.
I don't think I watched a single Bundesliga match during that time. I was not rooting for Germany.
I'm still not sure it's ok to cheer the men in black, but its hard not to admire their play. Whereas the Dutch have appeared lucky, and the Spanish seem content to play keep away and assume that time of possession equates with victory, the Germans have struck a wonderful balance of discipline and bold individual creativity; youth (Muller and Schweinsteiger ) and experience (the resurgent Klose). And while I am not convinced that Ozil's presence on the team says all that much about a new, multicultural Germany, I am also unwilling to dismiss this storyline entirely.
Mostly, I'm looking forward to putting history and politics aside for 90 minutes and enjoying a great match. Hopefully that will be ok.