Rio de Janeiro Botafogo vs Flamengo
Rio de Janeiro Botafogo vs Flamengo.
It was a lot of work to get Irmante moving today, as we did not get home until 6am, and the party was to start at 9am and go until 3pm. The Brazilians know how to party. They set alarm clocks to be able to get up in the mornings to party in the streets. There were to be 500,000 people at the Carnaval Monobloco Finale party and I was not missing the opportunity to try to wrap my mind around that. So, eventually I scraped Irmante off the floor at noon to get her to shower.
Well, we missed most of the insanity, and we just kind of showed for the aftermath, but there were still people everywhere. Everyone was very drunk and most of the skin was darker because most of the tourists are gone now. We did not hear English the entire time we were at the bloco. There were crazy beer fights taking place in huge crowds. There were Brazilian men that basically trying to rape-kiss every individual/group of women that walked past. Irmante was hanging onto my arm as I lead us through the crowd and one man actually tried to pull her off of me. It was not scary or anything like that, but it was crazy how aggressive a lot of drunk Brazilians are on the last day of the year, before the Monday after Carnaval, ‘Brazilian New Years Day’ takes place. People were making out on the street everywhere and there were women walking around with bags of condoms, giving them away to everyone.
At 5:30pm, I went to meet Cash at Maracanã Stadium to catch the Botafogo vs Flamengo football game. On the way there, the hooligans on the subway were insane. They were like an angry mob of prisoners who were smashing coolers on the ride, punching the roof of the subway, jumping up and down and chanting in unison. Cash is a massive Botafogo fan, has a tattoo on the back of his top right shoulder, and has organized fan club with his buddies. It cost me $80 Brazilian Reals for my ticket. Maracanã Stadium used to be the biggest stadium in the world and once had a record attendance of 199,854 people at a game. It is a huge place. Cash was half and a half late because the police would not let him and his crew in their Botafogo colors on the buses with Flamengo fans.
Cash told me that Maracanã Stadium is owned by three different teams, and that Botafogo vs Flamengo is a huge rival. Flamengo have something like an estimated 40 million fans in the world. I asked him if Botafogo has beaten Flamango lately. He said, “Yea, we be them four times last year. No in the game man. On the street.” Flamengo beat Botafogo 2-0 in the game. As soon as it finished it was Botafogo vs Flamengo again. All of the Botafogo fans in the section we were in ran hard, down the stadium and out into the street. Cash told me we were running to ‘Fighting Street to meet the guys,’ which is a street across the road from the stadium where fans of each team fight after games. There were cops everywhere to prevent the hooliganism. There were cops with huge batons, cops with machine guns, and cops on horseback. Cash told me to stay close to him so that I did not get beaten by the cops. Nothing escalated as the Flamengo fans stayed away from Fighting Street, so Cash, two of his friends and I got into a cab to come home. He told me it was too dangerous for them to ride the subway home.
A friend had recently read to me about how English football hooliganism is like a pretty flower compared to Brazilian football hooliganism. The Botafogo vs Flamengo passion is awesome.