There's a scene in Vision Quest in which Louden Swain's boss Elmo gets to talking about why he took the night off of work, sans pay, to watch Louden wrestle the mighty Gary Shute. He got to talking about Pele.
I was in the room here one day... watchin' the Mexican channel on TV. I don't know nothin' about Pele. I'm watchin' what this guy can do with a ball and his feet. Next thing I know, he jumps in the air and flips into a somersault and kicks the ball in, upside down and backwards. The goddamn goalie never knew what the fuck hit him.
Pele gets excited and he rips off his jersey and starts running around the stadium waving it around his head. Everybody's screaming in Spanish. I'm here, sitting alone in my room, and I start crying.
That's right, I start crying. Because another human being, a species that I happen to belong to, could kick a ball, and lift himself, and the rest of us sad-assed human beings, up to a better place to be, if only for a minute. Let me tell ya, kid, it was pretty goddamned glorious.
Well, Elmo would make Nolan Smith appear stoic and brave if he saw Lionel Messi play, like could tonight at the New Meadowlands where the U.S. Men's National Team will face Argentina in a friendly match at 7 p.m. I know, I know, college basketball's on too, so fat chance of many of you flipping over to ESPN2 to watch something that doesn't matter as much in the grand-scheme sense as those hyping it would have you believe.
Your loss. Very few people on Earth are as good at what they do as Messi is at what he does, and you don't get many chances to watch him do it on American soil.
US on red alert after Messi given permission to roam [Buenos Aires Herald]
Pressure is on for Argentina [ESPN]
U.S. vs. Argentina match preview [Washington Post]