Liverpool vs Southampton

Liverpool 2  Southampton 1

Liverpool win the second game of the Premier League season despite the long week with the incredible victory in the double-overtime in Istanbul earlier in the week. What a relief. And Man City dropped points to Tottenham, a tie. Glorious stuff. Here are the highlights.

Part I – My Evolution into becoming a Liverpool Fan

For all the Americans in the audience, the thing we call football should be called Tackleball. Could we maybe get a campaign to make this change to avoid all the confusion.  The thing we call soccer is football everywhere else. There is a reason for this although it has nothing to do with the kicking of the ball with a foot.

In medieval times, there was all this jousting and polo and such. Only nobles could play those games  because common folk could not afford the horse and gear to participate. Football, played by common folk, describes any game not played on a horse. And growing up, while there were horses around, we weren’t allowed to play with them.

I discovered the game at around seven or eight because of a boy that lived a couple of doors down. We were the same age, both book smart and adventurous. His parents had been missionaries in Brazil. He loved Pele more than anything in the world.

I learned about the Ginga style of play because of him. This was his passion.  Mine was music and art and writing. At the time, I loved the Beatles. They were from Liverpool. That was the seed that ultimately made me the Liverpool supporter I am today.

As it turns out, over the years, Liverpool has been home for many Brazilian players. The current ones are just world-class, one and all.

Alisson, our golden-glove but currently injured, goalkeeper.

Alisson

Fabinho, a force to be reckoned with in the midfield and getting better every time he plays.

Fabihno

Roberto Firmino, part of the Liverpool terrifying front three who is a playmaker like none other, selfless and with such amazing stamina.

Firmino

 

UEFA Supercup Liverpool vs Chelsea

Liverpool   2   Chelsea 2 (Penalties 5-4)

 

FEFASuperJordieIn the first half of Liverpool’s first Premier League game of the 2019-2020 season, our world-class goalkeeper, Alisson, went off injured with a hamstring injury. We had sold our backup keeper earlier that week and brought in veteran Spanish goalkeeper, Adrian. He finished up the first game and had to start in the UEFA Super Cup against Chelsea. He emerged a Liverpool hero in less than two weeks with the club. That is quite an accomplishment. Cheers to Liverpool on another trophy.

I was at work for the start of this game (3:00 PM US Eastern time) so I listened on the LFC radio. I love those announcers. It sounded like a rough first half, like Liverpool were firing on half their cylinders.   Also, Chelsea’s new signing, Christian Pulesic, is damn good. He should have come to Liverpool but there he is at Chelsea. Making trouble. Had he been able to stay onside, he might have finished Liverpool off in the first forty-five.

 

I arrived home fifteen minutes into the second half after Sadio Mane scored his first goal and brought the score level at 1-1.  Liverpool had decided to show up for the second half, adding Roberto Fermino to the line-up to show the full strength of our starting front three. It made a difference. When Mane, Salah, and Fermino are on the field, it is magic.

FEFASuperJordieI could not find the game on television in English so I watched in Spanish. I really must learn to speak the language. I didn’t mind. Football is football in any language. Even in America where we call it soccer, causing the death’s of random Europeans whenever we call it that.

Apparently, I could have watched on USA network but I did not know that so I synched the Liverpool commentators with the Spanish broadcast. The game went into double overtime – ended up 2-2 and off to penalties we went. In Istanbul.

Apparently, European nights played by Liverpool in Istanbul require penalties. My nerves are shot. I am worried about the players as happy as I am for them winning the trophy. The season has started off at a full-sprint. They fly back to Liverpool on Thursday, then fly to Southampton on Friday for a Premier League game on Saturday.

Talk to you lot on Saturday. Hopefully, Liverpool can beat Southampton. It’s not a given. Not when we have injuries and the possibility of exhaustion to deal with. Hopefully, they remain mental giants and listen to their team-mate, Sadio Mane. Tired is only in the mind.  These are young men. They probably can override tired in those sharp minds of theirs. Me, I need coffee. Now.

 

 

 

Liverpool vs Norwich

ChampionsOfEurope

Liverpool 4      Norwich 1 

I have decided to blog every Liverpool game in the 2019-2020 season. I have been Liverpool obsessed since 1985-1986 season so I might as well make use of this distraction by feeding my other obsession, writing.

I am one of those Liverpool fans that fans of other clubs bristle at. Ask me to sing “You’ll Never Walk Alone” and I will sing it, at the top of my lungs with all my heart … and off key. You have been warned.

Liverpool opened their 2019-2020 season with a convincing win against the newly promoted Norwich. The score line suggests that Liverpool is ready for business. However, the Canaries did not go down without a fight. Here is what went down. I will leave it to the professionals to show the highlights.

 

So the problem is that Liverpool played 1/2 game, scored 4 goals, and then nothing. Zero goals in the second half is disappointing.  With the Man City robot-playing footballers, goal differentiation will matter. A lot. Points and goals. We need both in this league. I am not entirely sure Man City will be our only rivals this year. Money was spent by other clubs. Not Liverpool (which is fine by the way – Klopp is brilliant at building players into world-class competitors).

Also,  our golden glove goalkeeper, Allison, went off injured in the first half. That is not good. Newly acquired, Adrian, took over. He has been at Liverpool a grand total of 2 days. That is it. I bet he didn’t expect to play like ever.  He did well for being called onto the pitch unexpectedly.

I pray Allison will be well before too long. He has already been ruled out for the Super Cup against Chelsea on Wednesday.  We will really see the quality of Adrian then.

So here is what is at stake….

LFCLogoIt’s been 30 damn years since Liverpool FC won the league. This translates “Liverpool has never won the Premier League”. It’s time. Winning in Europe for 6th time was nice and all. Ok, it was amazing, a great way to end the 2018-2019 season. Losing the Premier League by 1 point to Man City, dream-crushing, clinical as Hell robots, sucked a lot. It hurt.

They deserved to win. Liverpool only lost to Man City last season.  Manchester City make the classic adversary. They look freaking scary in black as they pummel West Ham in their opener 5-0. It burns. We start the new season 2 goals behind by goal differentiation despite a 4-1 victory. How is that even possible? Ouch.

To be fair, Norwich looks a better side than West Ham. However, Man City pummeled the Hammers on West Ham’s own pitch. Liverpool was at Anfield which is always an advantage. I see a long, hard season ahead. Fun but loooonnnnnnng.

Next up: Super Cup in Istanbul – Liverpool vs Chelsea. – August 14th – we will catch up then.

 

 

August 2019- The Hanged Man

img_1444July has gone and it is time for another month from my year’s tarot reading. August brings the Hanged Man which portends salvation, a change of direction. That seems a good description. I have finished writing one book that will suit for a debut novel. It will be with beta readers around the 17th before I leave for the beach for a week.

July saw the reinvention of my surroundings, letting go of material things as a symbolic letting go of the past. I fought my battles and have come out no worse for the wear.

Last month ended with my parents losing their life-long home to fire. After three moves, from a one bed-room flat, to a third floor walk-up, and finally a little cottage, my parents are in a decent temporary home until their house can be rebuilt. They are putting my father’s childhood home back exactly as it was. I think they would even take back the mold and the sub-standard wiring. It will be cleaner when it is done. In theory. 56m6UCzbQM+nMtHLLxC0iQ

My daughter moves home in a few days from this post. Then we will take a week at the beach before she starts school and I start putting together my submission packages to send my book off into the dread query trenches.

LiverpoolFCFullLogoLiverpool is back for the 2019-2020 season. They play Man City on the 4th for “The Community Shield” – it is like a trophy only it’s not. It’s a pre-season less than friendly game. Then the season will open up properly against newly promoted Norwich on August 9th.  So turn the page and off we go.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

July 2019- Knight of Swords

img_1443Back in December, on New Year’s Eve, I did a tarot drawing, one card for each month. July drew The Knight of Swords.  The knight indicates a battle, one that must be fought but the knight can lead that contest to victory. However, the fight must be made. And that is accurate. There are three distinct battles for me to fight this month.

June was a tough month. My parent’s house was destroyed by an electrical fire. No one was hurt but it will be 4-6 months in reconstruction. That is super tough for my elderly parents. It is the house my father was born in and the house I grew up in.

RenderedImage Dealing with the aftermath of the loss of my childhood home is the first battle of July. Getting my parents settled and finding a way for them to take advantage of insurance paying for everything so they can totally remodel their house, make it easy to live in for the remainder of their days will be a victory. However, the road there is hard and my parents are not in great health. Frankie is super worried.

The second battle. My daughter is leaving New York to come here to go back to school and regroup. She is not sure if she will return to New York. She has taken location out of her dreams.

UjkgY2PHSai+iopraTBXTwShe wishes to work at something where she feels passion and purpose, wherever that may be. She has taken a “Women in Tech” scholarship to learn full-stack programming to open up her options for employment. While in school, she is going to live with me. She returns home in August.

To prepare I have donated all my oversized furniture and for the first time in my life, bought new furniture that will allow the space to work comfortable for two. This has felt invigorating but also like closing a chapter of my life again. Change is the only constant in life but it comes slow.

58344333290__BC7FC1A5-CCCB-41A6-B2F6-7C0017396758The third is handing my book over to my two beta readers. I am off this week to finish up the last revisions. I have such mixed feelings. It is a good book, I think. I hope. But it is done. It is time to let it fly.

When one book ends, another must begin. In my little world, Hell is a white blank page. So much possibility for me to wield or destroy. Filling the first pages of a first draft feels like weeding through a field of razor sharp vines, a death by a thousand cuts. Once I get there, it is paradise and when I end a book, I hold paradise for a moment. And then I return right back into Hell.  So into the brink we go in a too hot July.

 

 

June 2019 – The Emperor

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Well, we are six months into 2019. The 6th card I drew for the year is The Emperor. This is a card that portends guidance, protection, and advice from a father figure.

A Little Non-Feminist Feminist Rant

I have been thinking about men in society a lot given my background and the current political climate where awful phrases like “toxic masculinity” are tossed about.

I am an independent woman who has worked in a male-dominated field (software engineering) my entire adult life. I raised a daughter on my own. I have no male partner in my life. I don’t want one. That has nothing to do with my gender. I am happy being single and was miserable married.

I remember being told to shut-up as a young girl because the men were talking. I was told I was not given a middle name because I could use my surname as a middle name when I got married. When I was coming up, the society around me screamed that as a woman, I literally had ZERO value if I did not get married.

So I get why so many women are pissed off at the “patriarchy”. It is an unhealthy environment that casts women as property for the sole purpose of sex and reproduction. For thousands of years of history, in all corners of the world, women have been less-valued than men. That must stop.

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People matter. We all do. Regardless of gender, race, ideology. We matter, each and every one of us. We all make choices that lighten or darken the world. Some make no choices at all which allows the status quo to continue for good or ill.  So I have no problem with the male in general. I even welcome the support, guidance, and protection of men. It is when they become tyrants we have a problem, but June brought the Emperor upright and not in reverse.

Moving On

I look forward to June. I have made great progress on the book. With the Champions League and the EPL on hiatus until August, I have less distractions from my final push to put this book to rest and get on with the next eleven. Yes, I started writing eleven other books during the last three years while writing this one. Another reason, this is taking so long.

The end of an Era

images-2Game of Thrones came to an end in May 2019. Lots of fans were disappointed. The final season felt rushed to a conclusion that satisfied few. However, for myself, I think that it came to an end was what tore me up.  Game of Thrones is undoubtable the greatest television show so far. It drew in millions of viewers, invested them in the complex and difficult characters that spoke so loudly to our humanity. While I will miss the show, miss trying to figure out what happens next, I so look forward the George RR Martin finishing his books. Let’s see which one of us gets there first. Shall we?

Miracles in May

A unseasonably hot May has ended after a series of triumph and a miracle.  I wake to June with Liverpool as European Champions. Miracles do happen. Recall that when I entered May, Liverpool had a 3-0 deficit to cover in order to get to the Champions League final. They did so with a miracle at Anfield. I took a great deal of inspiration from that night.

May 7, 2019 is one of those days I will remember forever. Yes, I am obsessed with Liverpool and really the English Premier League. There is something there that men from literally every corner of the globe can come together, united by purpose, put their differences aside and create emotion like this. Note at the end of the evening, when Liverpool has done the impossible, the crowd singing to them and the players singing back to the crowd “You Will Never Walk Alone”. This is the stuff of hope and dreams.

May 2019 – King of Swords

img_1441It is already May. And here is the 5th card of my 2018 New Year’s Eve drawing.

The King of Swords indicates Ambition, projects taking off. I am optimistic that this is a good portent of things to come. My current book is better than I ever dreamed. Epic fantasy is ambitious so this is the card for completing one. I do wish I was already on the query train. July feels like the realistic goal. That is a hard time to hit the rails as it is also conference season so agents are doing lots of traveling. We shall see.

My beloved Liverpool FC had a wonderful April. They are in semi-finals of Champion’s League. The first game of the semi against Barcelona of a two game set did not go well at all on this first day of May. No away goal and Barcelona punished us 3-0. Lionel Messi is the best player in the world. No doubt. But Mo Salah and Sadio Mane will match him in time. As will Liverpool’s big man, Virgil Van Dyke. Just wait.

If Liverpool win their last two games, they could still win the EPL but Man City would have to lose or tie. If they beat Barcelona 4-0 at Anfield, they win Champion’s League. My feeling is this is not the year for Liverpool trophies. In keeping with the sometimes harsh King of Swords, next season will see my loved team take a trophy or three. Everything is in place for them to win everything. I would love to see Liverpool take the treble and silence their over-abundance of critics.

Liverpool and I suffer together with that almost there and so close but so far away misery. Although, Liverpool play football with such joy. It is why I love them. I hope they recognize how close they are to being a truly legendary team, one that will be remembered for the ages, that other teams will aspire to for a century.  What a season. Even Sir Alec Ferguson in all his winning seasons at Man United never had as many points as Liverpool has amassed this season.  In all but 3 seasons in the last 40 years, the 91 points Liverpool have  right now (with 2 games to go) would have won them the league. Crazy. Damn, Man City. Damn, Lionel Messi. We fight on.

April, the Cruelest Month

April was not terrible. In fact, it resolved a lot of pressure. I paid off my credit card debt (which was amazing and took me years to accomplish). This frees me up for future opportunities. Maybe buy a house. Maybe move to Liverpool. That’s a possibility.

I did a crap load of revision on my book and it is buzzing along. It has gone from being very good to something extraordinary in personal terms. I don’t know how the market or agents will receive it. I won’t know that until I query the thing. But I made positive steps forward.

I had a great visit with my daughter. She lives in New York and came home for one of her best friend’s engagement party. My daughter will be maid of honor in the wedding. She is going to wear a tuxedo. We shopped for a bowtie and she looks awesome in a jacket and bowtie.

Liverpool

A great month for Liverpool FC which Barcelona and Lionel Messi stomped on this first day of May. We are not going to talk about that.

April 5 Liverpool 5 – Southhampton 1

April 9 Liverpool 2 – FC Porto 0 (Champion’s League)

April 14 Liverpool 2 – Chelsea 0

April 17 Liverpool 4. FC Porto 1 (Champion’s League)

April 21 Liverpool 2  Cardiff City 0

April 26 Liverpool 5  Huddersfield 0

In May, Liverpool play Newcastle (a former Liverpool coach at the helm), Barcelona for second leg of Champion’s League semis, (we must win 4-0 to advance to finals -seems unlikely).  If we beat Newcastle and Brendan Rogers and Leicester can’t pay Liverpool a solid by beating or drawing Man City, the cup will go down to the final day when we play the  Wolverhampton Wolves (not an easy team) and Man City gets Brighton (a team that will likely be relegated).

This is the story of my life. So off we go. See you in June.