Top 10 World Cup observations

June, 27, 2011
06/27/11
1:48
PM ET

Top 10 observations from opening day of WWC2011:

1. The SBAHN, the UBAHN, and other BAHNS are all equally confusing trains with many stops and transfers.

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German Fans
Jaime Lowe Going my way: German fans get in the spirit of the World Cup.

2. Older German men who look like my Opa (i.e., black socks, brown sandals) will happily give a lost, jet-lagged stadium-bound journalist lengthy and animated directions … in German.

3. Those German directions will degenerate into wild gesticulation if you give the men a blank stare.

4. The best, least complicated way to Olympic Stadium is to follow painted people, anyone with an oversized felt Dr. Seuss hat, large groups of men in lederhosen, anyone in a unitard. You will either get to the Women's World Cup's opening ceremony or to a rave by the river named Suicide Circus.

5. A lovely little 11-year-old girl named Lily from Luene wants to play defense on the German national team.

6. Olympic Stadium: Well constructed for Nazi propaganda, not so much for bathroom lines and wurst purveyors.

7. Sinclair's free-kick goal with a broken nose should inspire all kinds of lengthy hashtags, such as #sinclairsbrokennosefreekickgoalagainstgermanyfirstinworldcupplaysince2003

8. Opening ceremonies inspire elaborate and entirely bizarre demonstrations with balloons and helium, such as the giant globe that became a disco ball, before bursting open and belching out thousands of soccer ball balloons that escaped through the roof opening. Interpretation: The world is pregnant with soccer.

9. The press wurst are … the worst.

10. The Daily Berlin newspaper had France on the front page on Monday, not the German victors. Interesting reaction Berlin!

Jaime Lowe played AYSO soccer for eleven years and never scored a goal. She still loves the sport. She has written for ESPN the Magazine and is the author of Digging for Dirt: The Life and Death of ODB (Faber & Faber) and a contributor to Fathers & Daughters & Sports (Random House).

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