So tonight in a little while I shall be watching England play their last game in the qualifiers for the world cup finals in 2010. Football, that is (or soccer, if you will). It's a rare luxury to be able to watch such a game in the knowledge that we've already qualified and so nothing rests on this game except that hopefully we play well and do ourselves full credit as far as possible.
I also have the luxury of being able to watch the game live, online, as I did when we sealed our qualification in the game against Croatia a few weeks ago. The only thing is, it's not quite live: online, it's delayed from real time (and tv broadcast time) by about 30 or 40 seconds. Not a problem, such a short delay isn't going to make any difference to me as I watch the game.
Well, that's what I thought in the aforementioned England - Croatia match. Not that I was thinking about it as Frank Lampard readied himself to take on the Croatian goalkeeper from the penalty spot: always a tense and exciting moment. I sat agog, watching the screen as the referee blew the whistle, the signal for Lampard to step forward and take his shot.
Just as he was about to do so, I picked up a text message on my phone - me and a friend always exchange dozens of messages during these matches, providing our own commentary. Just before Lampard approached the spot and took his kick, I read the text.
*yes! great goal!!*
How does he know? I thought to myself, as I looked up to watch Lampard's shot hit the back of the net. Then I remembered about the time delay, which meant from my perspective that my friend was watching the match more than half a minute into the future. I had to urge him to count to 30 before he sent me a text in the event that England scored again (which they did, of course). Our exchange of messages then went off at ridiculous tangents as I quizzed him about what it was like to be living in the future (*oh, you know, jet packs, food pills, that kind of thing*).
Watching the football tonght will also serve as an evening off for me - I've been spending a lot of my evening time working on more music. New stuff, and brushing up some existing ideas. I've already found myself with a little bit of insight into the near future, knowing what my mental processes are like when developing such ideas: they feel exciting and fresh and worth pursuing right now, and I'm pretty sure that in a couple of weeks time I'll think they're all nothing more than various grades of absolute tedious shite, and that's when I'll start worrying, as the time gets ever nearer.
Thankfully, what I've just described has (so far) never been the final stage of said process.