C.U.C.S.: the Idea and Abstraction

I just found out, by way of my favorite writer on all things Italy whose heart echoes strongly, that the journalist Roberto Stracca has died. I do not profess to have known much of his work, nor to have been a longtime reader of his. I'd come across a few of his pieces about the supporter's side of the story, but to say I was more than very casually aware of him would be to lie. 

However. I found this short text he wrote more than fifteen years ago, in his early twenties, which is doing the rounds on the Internets in wake of his passing, and feel an unrelenting need to share it. It's a piece on C.U.C.S., the legendary supporter group that occupied Curva Sud for roughly two decades, starting in the late 1970's.


After Roma-Cagliari I asked myself what sense there was in still going to the stadium, to see painful performances by Balbo, Fonseca and company, who don't care about us fans. But I was happy nonetheless, and it took me a while to understand the reason why. Then I thought back to that dog day afternoon when I saw a group of guys who sang in the hope (illusion?) that some old work horse could score a goal. How many times has this question been heard: what is the Commando? A closed circle? A criminal association? An organization financed by AS Roma? It is neither of these things. The Commando can't be explained, because the Commando doesn't exist. It's an idea, an abstraction, a feeling. No one owns it. No one can make it do what he wants, because no one can command a movement with a soul. No one can destroy it, because you can't kill an ideal. I laugh when I think back to our discussions to disband the group, because you can't put an end to a passion. As long as there will be a child waving a flag, there will be a Commando Ultrà. We are merely momentary realizers of an institution. Tomorrow I'll leave and in my place will come a hundred better than me. There will be someone who'll say "I was around in '77" and will be buried by laughter. There will be someone who'll say "I'm the boss", and 20.000 will blow raspberries to him in defiance. Who can possess a movement with a soul? As long as there are those who want to sing and not watch the game, the Commando will live on. Even if Dylan and Ambra (today's youth) will be here tomorrow, and they won't even know who Vittorio and Stefano were, they'll feel a shared affection and an emotional boost. The Commando doesn't have directives, bosses or vice-bosses. The Commando doesn't have controls, the Commando is a force of nature.
It's a wind...and who can stop the wind?