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BatiGol Weekly 87: Stay all night

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In which we discuss house guests and how joyful you are that they’re bringing such jubilation to your otherwise mundane and boring existence.

FC Crotone v ACF Fiorentina - Serie A
Stay a little longer, says Carlos Sanchez with complete sincerity.
Photo by Maurizio Lagana/Getty Images

So your in-laws are coming to visit you and that’s a very exciting thing because you like them so much, especially when they’ll be sleeping in your living room for a week. You’ve planned out some meals that don’t have spicy peppers, you’ve scrubbed the bath tub, you’ve vacuumed and vacuumed again, you’ve cleaned the windows and fixed the dripping faucet in the kitchen. In short, you’re as ready as you’re likely to get.

And now, oh hey, great, here they are, and you can feel the smile begin to freeze onto your face, where it will remain for the next seven days and will leave your cheek muscles exhausted. You know that you can’t let your shoulders slump, can’t heave that big sigh, can’t allow your forced rictus enthusiasm to slip for even a moment, because that will be a big mistake and you know very well why.

It’s four days in now and you’re really getting tired of not being able to sit on the couch and have a beer. You’re tired of running the air conditioning every day. You’re really tired of wearing pants, even when you don’t have any work to do. And you’ve still got three days of this left.

Now take a deep breath and hold it in and listen to yourself. Listen to the acid gurgling around in your stomach like the opening bars of a concerto in ulcer major. Feel the soreness in the molars you haven’t stopped grinding for ninety-six straight hours. Note how your eyes can’t quite focus any more the way they used to, and how if you try to focus on something for more than two minutes, you realize that your vision is fuzzy and you’re no longer even reading anything.

Now stretch that feeling out for another two months, and you’ll know how Fiorentina fans feel: desperate for the thirty-eighth Serie A match to wrap up so that we can go back to our usual lives without having to plan our weeks around this visitors who (and here you feel that muscle just under your eyelid start to twitch) you really, really like, and of course you wouldn’t trade them for the world, even if you could. Of course not, dear. They’re great. Love you too.

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That’s it for this week, folks. Remember: snakes aren’t the enemy, but you still don’t have to like them.