of orange blood

Holland is a frenetic orange mess this month – the European Football Championship (soccer for you yanks) is upon us!

A few weeks ago, I started noticing whole neighborhoods stringing up orange flags and flyers, plastering their windows with HUP HOLLAND HUP and ORANJE BOVEN. The frenzy has crept from the suburbs to the cities: McDonalds is turning out special burgers shaped like footballs, the grocery stores are selling orange football player collecting cards and orange cake bites, and billboards ads are reserved for products sponsored by the handsomest Dutch players.

On the night of a game you carefully clothe yourself in the most bombastic orange ensemble you can assemble, then careen over to your favorite pub to snatch a seat before the viewing party gets crowded. A DJ is spinning energetic, pulsing pre-game tunes and the air seems to pulse, too. With orange pride.

I’m a cultural mutt and patriotism usually confuses me, but THIS? This I get.  

On that note, I must away! Our match against Germany is starting in 5 minutes and things are about to get fierce.

Who are you rooting for this year?