May 17th, 2010 By Ott Tammik | News | Posted In: CLEAN UP, Sports

World Cup Roulette: Why One Portlander Cares Very Much Who Wins Soccer's Global Championship

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Portlander Barry Biechner has put his fate in the hands of the 2010 World Cup. The 27-year-old production worker at the Crystal Ballroom vowed last week to live in the country that wins soccer's global championship for at least a year.

Biechner says in his blog, “Where Will I Live?” that he will pack his bags by next January 2011 and move to his new home —whichever country prevails in the monthlong tournament that ends July 11 in South Africa. Biechner says he got the idea for the publicity stunt when he was complaining to a friend that the World Cup is largely ignored in the United States.

“No one really cares about the World Cup in this country compared to other countries where it's absolute madness. I think the U.S. kind of misses out on a big opportunity to be a part of it,” Biechner tells WW. “It is the world's most popular sport. We're kind of isolated as a country.”

Biechner has traveled before in Europe and Asia before, but not for such a long period of time as he is now planning.

Although he's trying to stay neutral for the sake of the blog, Biechner is rooting for the United States. “But I don't think they'll win. History has at least shown that. It would certainly be the most convenient [if the United States wins],” he says.

Biechner says he will try to follow through on his promise even if the winner is a country where he doesn't want to live. He mentioned North Korea, which is also in the tournament. “No one wants to live there [but] I'd embrace it as just an experiment and do the best I can,” he says.
 
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