My Grandmother Hated Maradona

by Enrique Olmos De Ita

My first word was goal. I didn’t say mum or dad or cat. I said goal, sitting on my grandmother’s knees. She would pick me up and we would watch football matches on TV. Well, that’s what my mother says. One day, I started screaming goal. I was born in 1984, which means I got to enjoy the Mexico ’86 World Cup (even though I clearly can’t recall it), watching my grandmother’s old grey TV. I called her Mama Toto until the day she died, aware of the fact that she wasn’t my second mother, but a different one.

We’ve seen dozens of matches, following every single move, inside her hut in the Apan plains, far from any kind of disturbance. We would also listen to some other matches on her red battery-operated radio, especially when she had to go to the kitchen. It was an extraordinary ritual, either at lunch or dinner time: we would sit in almost complete silence at the table, listening to the distorted sound of the radio. Then we would scream and my grandmother would get up nervously to set the volume of the old device. It was just an excuse not to sit still. Read More

j j j