‘Go wash the dishes’: what explains the crying of the boys at the opening of the World Cup? – 07/20/2023

CazéTV’s YouTube chat had to be disabled during the broadcast of New Zealand and Norway, the opening match of the Women’s World Cup, on Thursday morning (20).

The justification was that “some people were taking advantage of the visibility opportunity to distill unacceptable prejudices within the values ​​of CazéTV and any society”.

“Go wash the dishes” was the mildest term published there.

The manure was loaded with comments about the appearance of athletes and attacks on the simple fact that women play football.

You don’t have to go to a men’s soccer broadcast chat to notice that, over there, nobody dares to say that that sport and boys don’t go together. And the athletes’ appearance will not be the center of spectators’ concerns while the ball is rolling.

In other sports, comments like this may even appear, but there is not the same violence when women compete in prestigious tournaments in their categories (at least in most of them, especially the individual ones).

With soccer, no: all it takes is a woman showing up wearing soccer shoes to mobilize the eagerness of those who behave as if they were watching their hitherto intact territory being invaded.

On the eve of the World Cup, I’ve been surprised by the amount of questions I hear about whether or not I’m going to watch the matches. Uai: and why would anyone, if they could, not watch it?

In December of last year, while the men’s Worlds were taking place, the question was not “if”, it was “where are we going to watch it”. It was already understood that on the boys’ game day, we’re going to finish work early, put the beer on ice and focus 100% on what really matters.

Why is it different now?

There are a few reasons. For years, women’s football in Brazil was an almost marginalized sport. There were no regular tournaments, the profession was precarious, the clubs did not embrace the project. And the prestige of any sport in any country is related to its history and the affective memories it awakens.

This is changing. Today we turn on the TV and see our teams on the field in Libertadores and Brazilian women’s Championship matches. We know who the main players of the teams are. And losing to arch-rivals, who are also on the field, hurts just as much.

The difference is that, for men, we have years of sorrows and joys accumulated in tournaments that have always mobilized the press, fans and stadiums.

Sixty years separate the first men’s Cup from the first women’s. In 1991, when the first Women’s World Cup took place, the boys from Brazil already boasted three Jules Rimet.

But there is still a long way to go. Starting with the most basic homework (where do you want a home, revolution, right?).

Those who have children have already noticed that at a certain point in their lives, boys and girls begin to be treated differently by adults when it comes to recreational activities.

Boys can’t see an orange on the ground that they go out throwing like a ball and aren’t blamed for it. But we all know some adult who causes real uproar if they see their daughter running with the class or playing with dirt, grass or water. “It will get your dress dirty”, “it won’t get your hair wet”, “that’s not a girl’s thing”.

A cultural cut is instituted since then. The boys are crippled from an early age and learn that the whole world, with the pool, sand and soccer field, is theirs. Girls always need to be intact. It’s as if, with dirty feet and hair tied up or disheveled, they are worthless as they move out of childhood and into adolescence.

And football is a high-intensity, contact sport that, in 90 minutes, puts everything that is considered standard beauty into the grinder: from hair to nails, passing through scraped knees and baggy shorts and shirts, supposedly incompatible with female bodies.

The Women’s World Cup serves as an antidote to this type of talk: “Yes, I can play. If Martha and Bia Zaneratto play, I want to too.”

This is revolutionary and causes hives in those who cannot stand to see women in any position that contradicts a social role imposed from an early age.

It is as if football were the last oasis for men to exercise, on the field, in the stands or in front of the TV, their masculinities without their partners, daughters and friends, until then uninterested in the sport, reproaching them for their performance.

The manure in the CazéTV chat is the most desperate expression of those who have already entered the field in defeat. Those who went there to curse the players are the same ones who complain about hearing female voices, in analyses, reports and voiceovers in broadcasts of a sport that until yesterday was synonymous with masculinity. Not anymore.

Worse, for the group, is that this year there is a real risk that women will do on the field what peers from the men’s national team could not in 2022, in Qatar. More than online chats, professionals in bars throughout Brazil must be prepared. There will be people crying liters in bowls and mugs.

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