Monday, June 30, 2014

Football/Soccer : That's the Way the Ball Rolls

The Rumour: That's the Way the Ball Rolls

   After 15 heroic saves, US goalie Tim Howard's block party had to end some time, and in the third minute of extra time it did when Belgium's Kevin De Bruyne found the net.
    By that point everyone in the office had stopped working to watch the match on TV. Yes, there was work to be done. Deadlines to be met. But why tidy up a presentation when history was unfolding before our eyes? We gathered around the screen. Some wore scarves. We prided ourselves it using words like "match", "pitch" and "nil". But when Romelu Lukaku made it 2-0, most of us walked back to our cubicles, tossing our scarves on to the floor.
    And then we heard Jim.
   "GOOOOOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAALLLLLLLLLLL!" Jim held that note for at least 30 seconds longer than Bill Withers did with "DAAAAAAAAAAAAAYYYYYYYY" on "Lovely Day". His face turned as red as rare steak. And then he gave in to a coughing fit.
    I walked up to Jim, ready to present him with a yellow post it note, the closest our office had to a yellow card,  when I realized the US was really back in the game. 19-year-old Julian Green scored on his first touch, making  it 2-1 in the 107th minute.
    Again we gathered by the TV to "ooh" and "ahh", to cheer and to groan and ultimately to see the dream end. Sometimes the ball rolls where you aim it. Sometimes a keeper robs you at the last possible moment, Clint Dempsey.
    For every time that's happened here are ten opportunities to make fun of goalies.

   And now to the subject of the song choice

Coming off their best album together, Squeezing Out Sparks, Graham Parker gave his backing band "That's the Way the Ball Rolls" for the Rumour's third album, 1980's Purity of Essence. At the time The Rumour was made up of legendary pub rockers Brinsley Schwarz  (Brinsley Schwarz), Martin Belmont (Ducks Deluxe), Andrew Bodnar and Steve Golding. There were two separate recordings of the album. One for the UK and a second for the US. The US version doesn't have "That's the Way the Ball Rolls", but you get the Glenn Tilbrook-penned "Depression" and a cover of "Rubber Band Man".

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