Watching the World Cup with earplugs 

Just one day into the World Cup and a few certainties have been established. A lot of the team are going to play cautiously in the early rounds to avoid losses and we're going to have to watch most of the tournament without sound.

Blame the dreaded vuvuzelas. And then, during the next World Cup, ban the damn things.

The vuvuzelas are the tiny plastic horns that are ubiquitous at the South Africa games. The horns, which are given away for free, produce the horrible droning sound that fills the air and the airwaves, sounding like a plague of crazed bees.

Broadcasters at last year's Confederations Cup at the same site pleaded to have the vuvuzelas removed from games because it's hard to talk over the sound, and frankly, it drives people crazy. Reportedly the players hate them as well.

But soccer's governing body, FIFA, rejected the pleas, citing them as part of South Africa's culture. To which I would say not everything about a nation's culture is worth embracing.

At one point during the opening game, ESPN showed a shot of Vice President Joe Biden in the stands, and a woman near him had a boy on her lap. He had his hands over his ears and looked completely miserable.

I know how he feels. There's sixty-two games to go, and I'm going to wear out my mute button.

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Ken Garcia

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