Happy Holidays, everyone, a.k.a. “I bow my head to you all.”


So, when I first started commenting over at The Offside, it was kind of weird. Being a veteran of car-related (Subarus in specific) message boards, and being oh, so tired of the nastiness, I wasn’t sure how I felt about ceasing to lurk …. and “speaking” up.

Then as one post led to another, and another, it struck me that the community here wasn’t anything like a message board. Monikers came and went as interest in the club waxed and waned, but one thing remained constant: Respect.

So, when Isaiah approached me about actually contributing as a writer in this space, I was, frankly, terrified. No, I don’t lack for confidence. But everyone who commented seemed to be brimming with knowledge. And while I was certainly a fan of the game, and a devotee of Barca, I couldn’t really say that I was an observer of the game. But basically, I said yes because I’m crazy in that I always look for new ways to screw up.

But with the help of Isaiah and everyone in the space, including the folks who aren’t here any longer, things got better. People called bullshit on some of my ratings and reviews, or pointed out tactical nuances that I’d missed, part of the process that helped me get better. And The Offside grew.

When Isaiah then approached me about continuing what we did in this new space, I was, once again, nervous. Sort of like buying a new house. It’s yours. You aren’t renting any longer. It’s all you, for better and for worse. So I questioned a great many things, including whether I was willing to make the chronological committment necessary to contribute to a space that is of the quality that the people who visit here demand. It’s a respect thing.

And here I am, here we are. People are still calling bullshit on my reviews and ratings, and I’m still working as hard as I can to improve at the task at hand. But through all of that, and the growing pains, and learning to blog about something that you love so much, it’s the respect that has remained constant. It’s something that newcomers seem to sense without ever being told, a self-perpetuating feeling that makes this space, to me, the best Barca blog on the net, and one of the best blog communities I have ever experienced.

So in this holiday time of reflection, I just wanted to say thanks to everyone for making this great thing that we have work. We have been so lucky to be fans of this great club. Through (for me) Rivaldo, Ronaldinho and all points in between, to the astonishing accomplishments of the current group of players, our beloved club has been great. And for most of that time, I have felt isolated as a fan of Barca and the beautiful game, until now. This blog is a space where Barca nuts can come and get their fix. It isn’t the only one for most people, and that’s okay, because I do feel that because of the mood that everyone sets, with the intelligence of their comments and the very clear mutual respect that everyone shows for one another, it will remain the one that most feels like home.

Which leaves me with not a whole lot more to say except thanks to you all, for letting me be part of a great thing.

Rock on.

P.S. The picture is of me doing about the only thing that I love more than Barca and all things Barca, bicycle racing. 😀

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Written by:

In my fantasy life, I’m a Barca-crazed contributor over at Barcelona Football Blog. In my real life, I’m a full-time journalist at the Chicago Tribune, based in Chicago, Illinois.


  1. Ethan
    December 25, 2009

    Thanks Kevin, We all appreciate the time and work that goes into keeping this amazing site up, and a great thanks to Isaiah as well. Without you both, My barca experience on a daily basis just wouldnt be the same. Thanks for making this site feel like a real Barca Family. MERRY CHRISTMAS EVERYONE!!! VISCA EL BARCA!!!

  2. barca96
    December 25, 2009

    keep em coming..
    happy holidays..
    merry x mas and a happy new year to all the barca fans..

  3. skyislm
    December 25, 2009

    thank you kev and isiah. you guys rock. and never bother about the ratings. we will crib but then again no one will ever be able to get everything right 😉

    thank you for making this place so great. merry christmas and happy new year!

  4. vicsoc8
    December 25, 2009

    Honestly it is the readers who should be thanking you for the hard work you put in to provide us with this place to indulge our obsession. The quality of this site (both from the administrators and from the individual posters) is exceptional. You should be proud that you’ve managed to create an island of sanity in the sea of idiocy that is the internet.

    I may not always agree with you, but anyone I argue with should consider it a compliment. I wouldn’t bother to engage in rational discussion with someone I didn’t respect, and I think that’s true of everyone here.

    Keep up the good work!

  5. skyislm
    December 25, 2009

    [not sure if already posted]

    little but cute article:


  6. tyler
    December 25, 2009

    No thank you Kxevin! and Isaiah and all the people who make this site run. When */http://fcbtransfers.blogspot.com/ shut down, I was at a loss. I wasn’t sure who I was going to be able to turn to for the daily Barca fix I needed. Then I found this site. I don’t remember how, but I did and it’s the one I know I can trust. I know the writers actually understand the club, the game of football, and that special something that makes Barca more than a club. I can’t tell you how many times a day I check the site, and how much I respect all the people in the comments and forums. This is the best Barca site out there, and I hope it continues to grow and evolve as time goes on. So no, thank you for giving us the wonderful platform to express our opinions and learn from experts who are nice and never look down on anyone.


  7. Helge
    December 25, 2009

    Thank you for all the devotion and work you and the rest of the crew put into this blog. It has become the website on wich I spend at an average the most time per day.
    I’ve been following your blog(s) since about 2 years and since then, being a Barcelona fan is even more fun.

    Keep up the good work and Merry Christmas!

    PS: Got any news about “Barca – the best years of our life”?

    • Kxevin
      December 25, 2009

      Not a peep. It’s available via the main store, but they don’t ship to the States. Kitbag is going to try to get it. They’re even sold out in places in Barcelona. Craziness.

      The search continues.

      • Helge
        December 26, 2009

        Wow, that seems to be a huuuuge success. Maybe the release of “Barca of the 6 cups” will decrease demand for “Barca-the best year of our life”…

        Via the main store… do you mean the European online store or the main store inside of the Camp Nou?

  8. Moy
    December 25, 2009

    Thanks for all the hard work. This internet space is really rocking and I always look forward to posts from you guys!

    Merry Christmas and Visca El Barca!

  9. AJ
    December 25, 2009

    Dude(s)… this blog is pure awesomeness… keep ’em comin!

  10. El Tel
    December 25, 2009

    Thank you, Kxevin. Your good will (and intelligent insight) shines beyond the Christmas holiday. Immanuel Kant would be proud of you!

  11. Kxevin
    December 25, 2009

    Aw, shucks. Thanks, everyone. Man, do we have plans for the coming weeks, including a big, fat ol’ dose of The Knowledge from Hector, Isaiah’s (I’m sure stat-rich) mid-season analysis, January transfer musings, and much more.

    The two weeks will fly past like the wind!

  12. DBarcaMan
    December 25, 2009

    MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!! to all my fellow cules. All the best to you and your families. Be safe and enjoy the holiday.

  13. December 25, 2009

    Thanks to you! And merry christmas, if you’re celebrating.

  14. Jnice
    December 25, 2009

    Thanks to everyone who makes this site what it is, from the bloggers to those who comment. You guys and girls are the best.

  15. Reaper
    December 25, 2009

    Thanks a ton Kxevin, Isaiah and everyone else here.. It’s always brimming with some thing or the other and it’s brilliant!

    I’m still waiting on my stock option w.r.t this blog!

    Merry Christmas everyone! and Cheers to the best year of our lives!

  16. messi108
    December 25, 2009

    Keep up the great work, Kxevin.
    And Messy Christmas.
    Thanks for everything 🙂

  17. majatt
    December 25, 2009

    Merry Christmas Guys and Gals, looking forward to the new year and more great things from FC Barcelona. Enjoy your holiday!

  18. Carles P
    December 25, 2009

    Kxev and Isiaih (and Hector)- Thanks for giving us a place to share our thoughts/observations of everything Barca. It truly is an EPIC blog and the fact that the best blog on things Barca related is based out of the US is truly a testament to this international game.

    Keep up the good work and Merry X-mas and Happy New Year!

  19. missingpage
    December 25, 2009

    Happy Holidays to you everyone reading and contributing to this wonderful and heartwarming blog! Health and luck to you and your loved ones…Visca Barca to the good and VISCA Barca to the bad…dream on!

  20. December 25, 2009

    Merry X-mas and Happy New Year (as the one that just ended with six more titles).

  21. jnelson
    December 25, 2009

    Thanks Kxevin, Isaiah, and Hector. THIS IS BARCA!!!!

  22. Liza
    December 25, 2009

    A thousand thanks to everyone both running the blog and commenting. I lurked for quite a while after finding this space, but when I saw how welcoming everyone was, I had to join in. I’ve learned so much from everyone here.

  23. fcbfan
    December 25, 2009

    Merry christmas to those celebrating and happy new year to everyone.

    Kxevin, Isaiah, Hector, all you lovely comentors, lurkers, everyone who makes this such a heartwarming space, thank you! Visca Barca y Visca BFB!

  24. Jim
    December 25, 2009

    For me it’s the listening as well as the learning which sets this blog apart. Everyone has their opinions listened to and debated and that tone can only be set from the top.

    Merry Christmas all and especial thanks to Kxevin and Isaiah for the enormous effort put into running this for us. Much appreciated and good to know we’re all on the same side – and what a side ! Onward to 2010.

  25. Don
    December 25, 2009

    Hello gents, im a relatively new Barca fan (watched them this summer during their US tour and fell in love) and ever since this blog has become a must read everyday. Thanks for all you guys do!

  26. ooga aga
    December 25, 2009

    merry solstice and holidays from ballbeav, ooga aga, and culehastaelculo. guess what, the days are starting to get longer for us in the northern hemisphere, whooopeeee!

    visca barca! a por seis mas!

    • ooga aga
      December 25, 2009

      oh yeah, kxevin, isaiah and hector, thanks! muchisimas gracias! estamos bien agradecidos!

  27. Catalanblood
    December 26, 2009

    Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year, BFB community!

    Thank you also BGB team, for this wonderful blog!

  28. Luna
    December 26, 2009

    Yes, thank you for this great site. I know U can come here to get consistent and excellent Barca related insights!!

    Felix ano nuevo!!!!!!

  29. December 27, 2009

    Yeah great blog guys. Especially for us non-Catalan/non-Spanish people, this and Total Barca keep us in the loop. And great discussions too.

  30. Kurt
    December 27, 2009

    Thanks for all your time and effort; this is a great blog. Intelligent, well-written, spot-on, and passionate.

    While I’m at it, thanks to all the commenters too. I actually learn things or smile when I read the article comments here. When I read them on Goal.com, Soccernet, or YouTube, I just get depressed about the ignorance and insolence of most posters and football “fans” around. haha.

    Happy new year!

  31. Bryant
    December 27, 2009

    Thanks Kxevin!!! I am a fanatical cule who remembers the old days of walking to Nevada Smith’s to get my Barca fix and I am glad to be experiencing some of the club’s best moments while watching every game at home and reading your very entertaining blog. Keep up the best work and really the only thing which could top 2009 would be to beat Real Madrid in the Cl final this year.

    Visca el Barca


  32. Diane
    December 28, 2009

    I’ve been wanting to write a thank you note telling you all (commentors included) how much I love the blog and why. But its taken all the computer time to read and digest the lengthy, substantive and thought-provoking posts, and then do the same with the comments attached to each. By the time I’m done with that I often don’t even have time to add whatever two cents I have left.

    So, that is why I love this blog. It never fails to be interesting and tremendously informative. All of the contributors’ affection for the team, for the sport, for fans of the sport, run throughout. There’s humor but no effort to be “snarky” to pander to the stop-in-for a quick laugh audience (nothing wrong with that but there are tons of those blogs already — I myself try to check kickette before I start work each morning!). No detail is too small to be examined, no psychological nuance or astrological portent thought to odd to be taken into serious consideration…I really love that.

    Because of all that, people here seem to hide who they are less than they do on some other sites, and I really enjoy the personal stories about the bloggers and visitors. In fact, before my next trip to Barcelona, I am going to poll everyone here about their favorite whatevers!

    Thanks for everything,

  33. Diane
    December 28, 2009

    p.s. I forgot to mention another fine BFB attribute, real affection and respect for each of the players as both athletes and human beings. I’ve always been a players fan and that’s not always welcome on sports sites!

  34. Colin
    December 28, 2009

    Thanks for all your insight and hard work Kxevin (and Isaiah)! This is still the first place I come to read about Barça!

  35. August 5, 2010

    I am based in Dubai..but from India. I am a travel Consultant. So it would be better if you can contact me over email and give me your requirements so that I will be able to guide you.. thanks and regards

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