Monday, August 9, 2010

PWCD (Post World Cup Depression)

I loved the world cup vibe. I even managed to attend a match at the Calabash and the atmosphere was electric! It was great to see South Africans jumping into the national pride pool head first and rallying behind a national sports team, the last time we did that – according to the movie Invictus - was during 1995 when we won the rugby world cup.

But as South Africa falls deeper into a depressive sulk after the festivities have drawn to a close, one wonders what long-term effects events of this scale have? Sadly the answer is not many. Although it must be stated that we now own a shiny new train, the rapid bus system seems to be working well and Durban now boasts a sea front, which rivals most of the world’s old favourites.

So apart from Fifa making a 2 billion rand profit and everyone’s holiday from the ‘real’ news in the world, I find myself asking what has changed for the better? The reality looks bleak.

With no more matches being played and most of the infrastructural changes completed, thousands of jobs have seized to exist as the last of the tourists begin to leave. The hundreds who were moved to places like Blikkiesdorp to hide our Gini coefficient are still without access to the most basic facilities and the sensational media count down to the end of the World Cup as the dates for the next lot of xenophobic attacks seemed almost ‘prophetic’.

It wasn’t as though the world cup made South Africans new people. It just made us put on our best face for the world. After all what else is the third world good for apart from jumping hoops for the first world?


Azra S. said...

Yeah I miss the vibe. *sigh*

From what I've seen, the world cup has basically forced government to upgrade certain facets of our infrastructure (mainly roads etc)... things that were long overdue.
It begs the question that if Government could achieve all that before FIFA's deadline, why can't they accomplish similar feats in those sectors where we desperately need it?

In terms of it (the WC) helping the poor. I don't see how that has happened.

If anything, it just left 47 million people depressed.

desert demons said...

Thanx for the visit Azra, however apart from the 47 million depressed the idea is not to forget the many who were displaced and thousands who are now without employment.

desert demons said...
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Anonymous said...

Big events like World Cup leave behind the same feeling as New Year parties..:-p lots of rubbish and hangover.
I hate soccer so I didn't enjoy it at all and my country won it, which made me hate it for the said celebrations and communal histerics all the month along.
Big events like this make rich to those already rich and maybe a bunch of local people but put the country upwards and things never go again to their proper place.
But chin up! you live in a very beautiful country :-)