The World Cup Final and Conferences

The last 3 World Cup Finals, and the one that will happen this year. have all coincided with a conference that I attend regularly, the European Conference on Defects in Insulating Materials. So, in my mind the 2 events are associated with each other. I have watched the final in 3 different conference locations, always with my Brazilian research collaborator, which has added ‘spice’ to the occasion! In 1998, when France beat Brazil, we were in Keele, while 2002 found us in Wroclaw, Poland. On that occasion, Brazil beat Germany, so that was OK! 2006 was perhaps most eventful. We were in Milan, and the final was between France and Italy! To be in an Italian city as the drama unfolded was something else. When Italy won, my Brazilian friend memorably remembered his Italian roots, and went native while the rest of us tried to go to bed and sleep in preparation for the conference.
So, what of 2010? We’ll be in Pecs, Hungary, in some unsuspecting bar, watching who? It would indeed be poetic if it was England against Brazil, but that seems unlikely if we play like we did against Japan recently! But who knows?

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