A Love Supreme: Acknowledgement

As Spangly Princess so concisely put it: Roma won. Roma lost. The end.

I suppose this is where I, as a blogger who for the most part concern myself with wasting everyone's time with Roma, am supposed to summarize the past year in some sort of ambitious season-ending reflection. But I can't. The season that just ended doesn't lend itself to handy summarizations of that kind, there's no way to fit it all into the same text and not leave out even more that's just as worthy of mention. I could write about the coaching question long enough for the text to last you right until around kick-off for next season, and only get as far as to the first week of September in the narrative. I could wear down a keyboard or two writing about why Julio Sergio's and Nicolás Burdisso's are two of the best story arches in all of sports this year. I could detail the fascination with which I watch Luca Toni play football, and the conflicting sense of stupor and regret I experience when doing so. And I might yet, all of that's very much on the table, just that it won't all come in one bigger-than-life post attempting to cover the entire season. That's all.

Yesterday I tried to take a page out of Ranieri's book, and DDR's as well. I genuinely wanted to remain above the fray and acknowledge that pushing it as far as we did was something miraculous in and of itself, and that there was nothing wrong in recognizing that Inter won because they were better. That as miraculous as our season was, Inter had something little more than us. But it wasn't easy. They pushed me, they put up a fight, and challenged me to succeed. When I saw Toldo kicking spare balls onto the pitch to waste time; when I saw Moratti do the handcuffs gesture his coach once tested my patience with; when I heard Mourinho speak and, again, unnecessarily provoking; when I just caught a quick glimpse of Materazzi; when I saw the Inter players hanging an offensive banner towards Totti on the side of their bus, after spending the summer of 2007 throwing hissy-fits over Ambrosini's banner and making formal complaints about it...well. When all of that happened, it became increasingly difficult to emulate Ranieri and stay classy, and to congratulate them and wish them luck on Saturday. But I want to, I do want to give this a try.

And that, right there, is the reason why Ranieri is a winner all things considered. As cheesy as it sounds, and trust me that I am aware of what this sounds like, he motivates me and inspires me to become a better man. And I know I am not the only one. Mourinho? He inspires his fans to stoop to his level and become petty, small minded provocateurs. He inspires people to tap into the darkest undercurrents of their inner self.