... that I am a German football fan. To those who know me, this will come as something as a surprise considering the fact that the last time I was a true fan of a sport was when the Bulls were playing the Jazz in the Finals. Here in Europe the Europäische Meisterschaft is taking place in Austria, and Fußball fanishness is contagious. This evening I pulled all of the limited strings that I have here, and managed to get myself down to the Pferdemarkt (a large parking lot which is downtown and surrounded by official or important buildings) to join several hundered other fans in a standing room only observation of Austria vs. Germany. It was an interesting game. I stayed at Pferdemarkt for the first half but went to my favorite Irish pub for the second so I could sit down. Well, maybe just an entertaining game. One of our star players was banned from this game following a red card that he received during our game against Croatia, and before the first half was up, Coach Löw joined him up in the stands. That's right, not only the Germany national coach, but also the Austrian coach was thrown out of the game for arguing with one of the refs. Then, not too far into the second half, Ballack scored a penalty goal making the score finally look like something other than a pair of badly drawn glasses. Ironically, I missed the penalty kick the first time around because I was looking for a seat, but don't worry; I saw it plenty of times in the replay. So it ended with the German team advancing to the quarterfinals and all of downtown Oldenburg erupting into yells, song, flag-twirling, and a deafening amount of honking. So there I am. Officially a fan of the German National Team. Of course, anything else and I think I would be burned at the steak by everyone I know here. Except for Drew and Lisa. Sorry guys.