But soon Aidan McManus, an intimidating West London Chelsea supporter with a surprisingly benevolent temperament, gets right to the heart of the matter, reading a chapter from John King's Football Factory that plainly describes the violence galvanizing English soccer matches: "Coventry are fuck all. They've got a shit team and shit support. You'd think they'd smell blood and hear the knives being sharpened. Not this lot. We had them boxed in and gave them a hiding, working fast because someone would've called the old bill. Harris was there and opened up some cunt's face with his hunting knife. Said later he should've signed his name, so if the bloke managed to get his end away, his kids would know the old man had been to London. That he wasn't just a goat fucker."
Somehow, American Po Bronson -- author of, um, The First $20 Million Is Always the Hardest -- loses the spirit of the evening with a rambling narrative about callow whiskey, Nike, and his noble attempt to cripple Brazil soccer star Ronaldo, which he reads while wearing a pair of soccer cleats draped around his neck.
But this can't temper the joy that is Scottish soccer songs.
Alan Black and "Italian tenor" Claudio Aronica (actually, a Castle employee in a wig and a tux) lead the crowd through aural highlights in Scottish sporting history: The love life of a Glasgow Ranger is forever ruined by the sprightly ditty called "Durrant Is a Poofter," sung with affection by Celtic fans. A Glasgow Celtic player, Frank McGarvey, learns of his wife's whereabouts from "McGarvey's Wife's a Whore." Ranger Bobby McKean commits suicide by gassing himself with car exhaust, and Celtic fans spread the word with, "Where's your Bobby gone? Left his engine on." Scottish soccer fans outside of Glasgow are happy to remind Glaswegians that they are "Sheep Shaggin' Bastards!" But Rangers and Celtics fans are quick to illuminate their true nature with, "We're crazy. We're mental. We're aff oor fuckin' heids," or everyone's favorite, "You're going home in a fucking ambulance."
With support like that, it's a wonder the Scots aren't world champions.
Most names have been changed to protect the employed.
By Silke Tudor