It was eleven o’clock on a Sunday night. We each donned the uniform: dark jeans and black hoodie sweatshirts. We went over the list. Tape: check. Camera: check. Toilet paper: check. Posters of the Bordeaux soccer team: check. We drove for nearly a half-hour. When we got to Johann’s stepfather’s neighborhood, we killed the headlights and parked up the hill from their house. We shut the car doors quietly and didn’t lock it. It makes that beep-beep sound when you do.
Then we snuck up on the green Berlingo mini-van. Five minutes and six rolls later, we were done. We taped the poster to the windshield and Johann unzipped the hoodie to reveal the Bordeaux jersey underneath. I snapped a photo and we vanished once again into the night. Then we drove over to his uncle’s house and repeated the same operation (but using only four rolls – having a small car is good for the environment in so many ways).
Then we giggled all the way home.
We should probably be too old for this, right? Well, we aren’t. But there’s a good reason for it. Johann is a Bordeaux fan, while pretty much everyone we know around here supports the Marseille soccer team. Last night’s game made it 30 years since Marseille last won a game against Bordeaux on Bordeaux’s home turf. Johann used to send everyone a postcard with something sassy written on it when this would happen, then we got creative and started making our own postcards with spray mount and clippings from L’Equipe magazine.
We upped the ante the following year. When Marc and Gisele were on vacation we used the key they had given us and went to their house to take some pictures. Johann was wearing his Bordeaux jersey and, well, shoes. He was also riding Marc’s Marseille scarf like it was Seabiscuit. After a few artfully chosen poses (smiling face, clear shot of scarf, just one butt-cheek clearly exposed) we put the scarf carefully back in the closet and erased all traces of our presence. The fun part was that Bordeaux and Marseille tied that year. You can’t gloat over a tie, so we had to hang on to that picture for a whole year before the opportunity to mail it to them came up. The reaction was just what we expected. What the hell? Is that at our house? When did they take this picture? Is that my Marseille scarf? Euwww, I’ve been wearing that!
As you can imagine, they’ve been plotting their revenge ever since. They kept saying they had something GREAT planned for us this time. Alas, it was not to be. Bordeaux won again. We TP’d their cars and, to add insult to injury, they’re going to get postcards with these photos of us doing it in the mail later this week. I’m starting to get why people like sports so much.