It’s times like these that try a man’s soul. How am I to survive this week without Barça? Here’s one way:
Scene: Stadio Giuseppe Meazza on a beautiful fall day. Two men stand in the presidential box looking out over the field. A worker paints lines.
Massimo Moratti: All this could be yours, you know.
Lionel Messi: It’s a very beautiful place. I like it.
Moratti: Name your price and we’ll get you over here tout de suite.
Messi: I don’t speak Italian, sir.
Moratti: Er, right, okay. Anyway…
Messi: I’m not sure how any of this works, but don’t you have to ask Barça if I can play for you?
Moratti: Why no, you have a buyout clause. It’s only 250 million euros.
Messi: That’s a lot of ice cream bars. I really like Rocket Pops the most, though. They’re not actually ice cream.
Messi: [louder] I REALLY LIKE ROCKET POPS.
Moratti: I heard, I just–nevermind. Let’s say that Barça agrees to your transfer.
Moratti: This is what we’ve been talking about, no?
Messi: We were just talking about Rocket Pops. Do you have any Rocket Pops? I’d really like one. Pep always has a cooler full of them at practice for me and Bojan. They’re so yummy and–
Moratti: I’ll get you some of those. [snaps fingers, lackey appears from nowhere with Rocket Pops] We have your friend Eto’o here. He is a most…[strokes chin while thinking for a few seconds]…enthusiastic fellow.
Messi: Yeah. Samu is great. Did you know he doesn’t like Rocket Pops? Isn’t that weird?
Moratti: Terribly strange…So you would like to play for us?
Messi: Of course.
Moratti: This is fantastic! We’ll get the contract drawn up right away. [snaps fingers, lackey appears with contract] Please, please, sign here.
Messi: You have Ronaldinho too, right? He’s fun. He once took me to Las Ramblas and we performed juggling tricks for tourists who thought we were impersonators. It was great! Then he played bongo drums for 14 straight hours. That part wasn’t so great.
Moratti: Well, you see, Ronaldinho plays for AC Milan, which is a different club. We just happen to share the same stadium.
Messi: Oh. That’s weird. Barcelona is the only team that plays at the Camp Nou. [Looks questioningly at his Rocket Pop] I think.
Moratti: The question, of course, is how to get Barça to agree to this cheaply.
Messi: You know, the Mister has been talking a lot about a band or something called Coldplay. I bet he’d love tickets to their next show for Christmas.
Moratti: That’s perfect! You’re a genius!
Messi: Once I was writing an email to my mom about Rocket Pops and I put an extra “o” in Pops and it was funny. She said she nearly p-e-e-d in her pants when she read it. It was so funny.
Moratti: As I was saying, you’re a genius…So, we’ll just get you over here and you’ll play for us soon.
Messi: It’ll be great. You guys play on Sundays, right?
Moratti: And Saturdays too sometimes.
Messi: Oh. Hmm. Well Barcelona’s games are on Saturdays most of the time. I might have to miss some of yours.
Moratti: Oh that’s fine–wait, what?
Messi: Well, I mean, I could play two games in a day, but yours would have to be pretty early so I could fly to Barcelona.
Moratti: No, no, I mean, I’m asking you to transfer–
Messi: Hey, is that Puyol painting the lines? He cuts our grass. PUYI! PUYI! UP HERE! Oh, no, that’s not Puyi.
Moratti: Yeah, we have groundskeepers for that. You guys are insane.