Stick to falcons, Qatar

Those poor Qataris. They’re paying so much money to be liked. Just not enough, sadly. For a start, you call that an opening ceremony? This is the Soccer World Cup, not some half-arsed attempt to impress the wealthy family of your uncle’s new bride. I expected more.

To be fair, I’ve always expected more from everything, especially myself, and have consequently spent much of my life in various states of disappointment.

Costing $220-billion, this is the most expensive World Cup ever. Judging by the opening, most of it went into the back pocket of the idiots who decided Qatar should host this gig.

I guess the Al Bayt stadium was okay if you enjoy camping. I find tents a bit triggering, and I don’t know whether to blame the army or my parents. If you didn’t watch it, the stadium wasn’t an actual tent. It was built to resemble one. Nothing like the leaking, canvas atrocity I was accustomed to, obviously.

Quite frankly, I would’ve preferred the opening ceremony to be held in the Al Janoub stadium. It’s designed to look like a giant vagina, which I thought was a worthy nod to Qatari women for the admirable role they play in … I don’t know, whatever role they’re expected to play, I suppose.

I was among the fortunate ones who could drink heavily while watching Sunday’s event without fear of burly men in dresses taking me off for a quiet chat in a soundproofed room.

It started off with a video of all manner of strange things – flying whale sharks, wild-eyed Bedouins, mystical desert dwellers and even a foetus in utero, a disturbing image for people who think babies are overrated.

There were camels on the field showcasing their usual unpleasant attitude and what looked like Bangladeshi migrant workers doing something vaguely suggestive with their arms. Then Morgan Freeman strolled out, speaking words of wisdom as one might expect from a man who once played God. For all we know, Morgan Freeman is God.

The highlight was when a young man with no legs propelled himself up to Freeman for an exchange of quasi-spiritual gibberish, and then, as if to confirm my suspicions, they reached out to one another with their fingers almost touching in a surreal impression of Michelangelo’s Creation of Adam.

Then there were men doing an unsynchronised dance with swords, which is really the only way men should dance, and a drummer, his bare chest glistening with sweat, in a provocative display of homo-erotic percussion.

There was a bit of flag-tossing, shadowy figures with lightsabres and outsize soccer shirts drifting about with no heads or limbs, perhaps as a reminder to visitors not to shoplift or hold hands in public.

The only live singers who appeared were two sensibly dressed men. This was a good thing. My heart almost exploded at the sight of Shakira doing her Waka Waka thing in 2010. A repeat would almost certainly have killed me. Islam saved my life.

There was an appearance by the World Cup mascot who resembles a huge manta ray that got taken out by a spearfisherman and came back as a ghost. The expression on his face is identical to the one on yours when you realise that having another edible might have been a mistake.

Then the Emir made a speech in Arabic. I think it was the Emir. It might have been the head of security establishing the ground rules for all the depraved Western scum in the stands.

This was followed by random people prancing around a massive golden infinity symbol – the sort of thing that got the pagans killed – and some fireworks that would have failed to excite a child raised by wolves.

Then it was on to the first game. The Ecuadorean anthem sounded like 10 000 men shouting at their wives. The Qatari anthem sounded like they’d added the lyrics as an afterthought.

Within 90 seconds, one of Ecuador’s players was writhing on the floor feigning a life-threatening injury. A minute later, they scored. This was disallowed, probably on the grounds that Qatar had paid a fortune for this sort of thing not to happen. The Ecuadoreans didn’t get the memo and they went on to win by two goals to zero.

I don’t want to be rude to the hosts, but they’re not very good at soccer. If I was the Emir, I would’ve pitched for the world cup in camel racing or falconry. Or flogging and stoning. Then again, if I was the Emir, Qatar would be a very different country today.

Oh, well. At least Fifa managed to prevent teams from wearing those offensive OneLove armbands. These degenerates will stop at nothing to spread their despicable message of tolerance and equality for all. Allow that and the next thing you know, it’s snacking on ecstasy and passing the bong around at halftime. It’s bad enough that Qatar has a relationship with David Beckham, a self-confessed metrosexual and chronic user of men’s hair products.

One thought on “Stick to falcons, Qatar

  1. Jo Jo Smith says:

    Pretty good summary with the usual dose of Ben-zine from Ben. [I do happen to know Ghanim Al Muftah the severely disabled young man on the stage with uncle Morgan] – Despite is deformity he is a great kid, he and his twin brother. I live in and out of Qatar. Its a great tax-free place to live in IF you are not a Nepali laborer. There is no crime and for us the Mullah $$$ [is that the correct term here?] is very good.

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