I recently discovered the music of Dua Lupa a beautiful young English singer, she was born to Albanian parents in London in 1995, as war ripped through the Balkans. 1995 is a year I remember well and so I am late to the party when it comes to Dua, but I can be forgiven for not being down with kids as I approach middle age. Her star has now risen to the point when she warmed up the crowd in the champions league final on a balmy Saturday night in Kiev.
This introduction of music into the final is the latest in the follow the yanks agenda within the powers that be of Uefa, who are intent on ripping the last vestiges of authentic character out of the game of football. However, I don’t blame Dua as she did her best in a faintly ridiculous routine in front of people there to see a game of football. I don’t blame her because I like her. She is a beautiful, talented, and well-spoken girl who radiates what I can only describe as niceness.
Not everyone is lucky enough to reach the age of 22 with a soul as intact as Dua, at her age I was wearing out my radiohead cds, getting drunk, and shouting at the TV.
I watched several interviews with her now and my opinion is that this is a lovely down to earth girl who while beautiful, has another light that shines from behind those looks, which makes a welcome change from the vacuous, nothings posting to Instagram from the beach or harping on about what they had for dinner. The girls got a nice personality, and personality goes a long way…but do not for a second think that rule only applies to nice personalities.
Mohamad Salah has a nice personality, he is liked by his teammates and fans alike, he plays with a smile on his face, and has been bringing joy to the western and Arab world for a full season now. The whole Liverpool team in fact have, even by rival clubs fans been described as likable, they are a team that played with a smile on their face, with a joy, and with an honesty. But alas on Saturday night, with the world watching, life in all its calm cruelty put called the cops and broke up this little party.
Because you see life doesn’t give a fuck about your happy moral narrative, not one fuck does it give about, karma, and justice and all the other lovely human inventions that we have bestowed upon the universe. The universe is vast, and silent and cold, and on a little patch of grass in Kiev, on a little blue planet ,one man knew that more than anyone else, and that man was Sergio Ramos. Sergio you see is a scrapper, he knows that we are all the descendants of scrappers and in nature, in harder times, it was win or die. Sergio Ramos, who knew exactly what he was doing when he arm bared the best player in Europe. He knew as he gave him a hug, when Salah knew his race was run. He knows now as he heads to bed for a long uninterrupted sleep with his 4th champions league medal framed and mounted.
He knew, and in doing so he deprived the entire world of the spectacle. There’s a new kid in town, after 10 years of Messi and Ronaldo we have a shiny new player, who seems nice , and pours tons of his own money into making his home town a better place his countrymen. He’s a breath of fresh air in his prime, playing in champions league final on the cusp of a world cup, he deserves this, we deserve this. You deserve nothing! With Salah dispatched to his ruined season, Karius did the rest. This was the final of the champions league, to play in one is a moment of supreme timing and good fortune, you have but a brief window, for your body to allow it, and then you will face every obstacle from every other player vying for your place in the final. This is not just about tonight this is about life, opportunity, it’s about all those nights we missed out, and consoled ourselves that our chance would come again, and sometimes it does, but often times it doesn’t. We forget in time, but there always that ache of what might have been.
It is with this knowledge that people mature, the floating nature of our 20s sharpens into focus in our 30s as we feel the sands of time erode our flesh and alter our minds. Hard work is not a product of people thinking it’s going to be ok. We will never be able to escape our primal need to place story, structure, and morality to our lives, we will always dream, and so we should, but know that people like Sergio Ramos don’t dream they will things into existence devoid of conscience, and sleep soundly that night. This is how the modern world was created, and I think we all got a nice reminder of that on Saturday.