”When he shall die, Take him and cut him out in little stars, And he will make the face of heaven so fine, That all the world will be in love with night, And pay no worship to the garish sun.” – Bill Shakespeare
At first, this post was a critique of the more rushed aspects of Austin FC’s futboling culture and reflection of my disdain for those who fueled that fire. After praying to buddha and a firm slap to my own face, I decided to restart the thing, as my anger felt misdirected and my verbiage needlessly hateful.
It’s true; I don’t condone a lot of ATXFC’s manufactured lore, but that is my God-given right. We don’t always have to agree — nor should we be expected to.
For instance, I’m in the minority who prefer viewing games whilst engulfed in a civilized crowd’s respecting silence, emoting only when the game dictates — because to sit through ninety minutes of uninspired war cries and horrid musicianship is, in fact, my mind’s torturous vision of soccer hell.
But the opinion of one individual is rendered meaningless if greatly opposed by the majority — this doesn’t escape me — so croon, roar, and shake your tiny tambourines until your hearts putter out . . . I’ll administer the defibrillators.
Even after reaching acceptance, I still question the effort invested in the Austin FC chants/songs or wether they were just created by some kind of corporate ad libbing machine. The songs are mostly filled with references to our city or colors, which could easily be swapped and made to work for any club — and that irks me.
I feel secondhand shame for whoever penned the lyrics “All of my friends are at McKalla, There’s something bout McKalla.” There hasn’t been a single goal scored, beer ingested, or debaucherous tailgate to revel in. This premature daydream serves as the perfect example of all the other overzealous ATXFC creations. There’s something about McKalla alright, and it’s the onsetting stench of insincerity.
The problem with these expedited creations goes beyond the lyrics; The AFC chant “McKalla” borrows its melody from “Havana”, a song paying homage to Cuban born Camila Cabello’s origin country, featuring Atlanta rapper Young Thug. Choosing an ex-Fifth Harmony member’s three year old pop tune feels almost disrespectful considering how flush our town is with musical talents. If we can make room for Cuba’s Camila Cabello and The Beatles from Liverpool, surely we can find space for Gary Clark Jr., Willie, SRV, or even Bob Schneider. However, I’m pleased to admit to one selection achieving absolute perfection. . .
The Daniel Johnston inclusion is an entirely different story. Not only did this song firmly hit the target, I think it struck center-bullseye. “True Love Will Find You in the End” will be our “You Never Walk Alone” or “Wonderwall”; an original tune created by an artist synonymous with our hometown.
Harkening back to one of our town’s own weirdo-wave artists is both intelligent and appropriate. It’s so easy to lean on Austin pop-culture and create yet another means to venerate Matthew McConaughey, but celebrating Johnston aligns much better with our town’s “Keep Austin Weird” ethos.
The person who suggested “True Love Will Find You in the End” should be in the drivers seat for all future decisions concerning Austin FC’s fandom; they get it. If that brilliant soul ever reads this, or you happen to know them personally, please have them reach out to me at iAmBronaldinho@gmail.com — Reach out to me brother, sister, or non-binary gendered person. I would love to team up with you and begin the reshaping process. Together, we will burn these falsities to the ground and scavenge for gems in the ashes. Together, we will spark the revolution.
Some will miss the meaning behind this inclusion, but everyone will appreciate it once realized. The legend of Johnston can grow alongside that of the team, and the two will become intertwined, further contributing to all the tiny little things that make Austin so special; this is real-life poetry.