This blog has been neglected lately — partly due to mysterious technical problems that just as mysteriously went away — and is likely to be neglected more in the upcoming days. But I wanted to post a small something just to plant a flag that says I’m still here.

After a sluggish start, I’ve finally started getting into the World Cup. I was fairly amazed watching Brazil play Ghana the other day. Ghana manhandled the U.S. team and continued to play well against Brazil, yet still lost 3-0. Brazil could just as easily have scored 10 goals if they’d shared the ball and, you know, focused a little bit. They carved up Ghana’s defense like that Ronco knife carves up tomatoes.

The upcoming holiday weekend presents a quandary: wholesome outdoor activities versus the rare harmonic convergence of the World Cup and the Tour de France. Wiffle ball & hot dogs versus semi-understood European sporting events. What oh what shall I choose?

Meanwhile, I wanted to share this WC anecdote from correspondent Stewart, for no other reason than it amused me:

I wouldn’t miss a match — but as we don’t have cable, we have to watch it on the Mexican channels — which means you don’t have to listen to commentators. Although, during the Portugal/Holland game — containing the most fouls in the history of the WC — the Mexican commentator said, “Welcome to the jungle!” in English. Very funny.

Which reminds me, Axl Rose — now sporting what appears to be a headful of yarn — was arrested this week for biting a security guard. Amazingly, it appears that alcohol was involved.