Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Of Middling Soccer and Great Thirst.

Nearly four years ago, I was in the nosebleeds in Gelsenkirchen watching the USA get shellacked by the Czech Republic, 3-0. I was shunning the Budweiser not for any high-minded principles, but because the line was too long. So much for the Germans boycotting the King of Beers as sponsor in their own homeland. Let's be honest: At a momentous event like the World Cup, you will drink whatever is handy. As long as it's handy.

Not too many beers are handy here in Costa Rica. But the San Jose suburb of Escazú, home to many well-heeled foreigners, seems to have more handy than the rest of the country. In particular, the best selection we have found — such as it is — is at a gringo-run sports pub called the Time Out Tavern. There one can find Duvel and Guinness among a wide variety of international lagers. And there one can also find Sam Adams. Which naturally we appreciate like never before.

Tonight we'll be at the Time Out, watching the USA play Czech Republic for the first time since my heart and many others were broken in Germany. It's just a friendly, but it's also a World Cup tune-up. And a chance for comeuppance. And Sam Adams, brewer and patriot, will be handy. So it's not meaningless.

There is no sign saying "Time Out" in front of the pub. The painted wall flags down knowing gringos in plain English. Want to find it? Look about 300 meters uphill from the Costa Rica Country Club. That's what passes for an address in these parts.


  1. Tough one for the USA but mostly 2nd string guys. It'll better in SA. We'll be in rural France for the opening game v England and I am hoping some cafe will have it on TV.

  2. Almost entirely B-team. Glad to see that this B-team scored two more goals than our A-team four years ago. Unfortunately our defense is suspect. And I don't think you'll have a problem finding the World Cup on in France, even in rural areas...