Vuvuzelas have been annoying us for hundreds of years, but the blast on a single horn cannot be compared to the din of 90,000 football fans blowing their horns in a World Cup frenzy.
I wonder whether any of the spectators in the stadiums are protecting their hearing by wearing ear plugs?
After hundreds of TV viewers around the globe complained that the swarm-of-bees sound from the plastic horns was stinging their ears, Host Broadcast Services, the company that provides the broadcast feed for the World Cup, last week doubled its audio filters to reduce the constant blaring buzz of the vuvuzelas.
FIFA president Sepp Blatter continues to back the use of the horns because “it is something that is uniquely African”, and he is not willing to ban the music traditions of fans in their own country.
And where are all the hundreds and thousands of horns being made? In China. 30 cents each.
Most manufacturers called them “fan horns” until Chinese state TV recently christened the horns with a name Chinese speakers could get their tongues around, “wuwuzula”.
I read an article in today’s L.A. Times that an American living in the German city of Weiden was so fed up with the constant droning from his neighbors vuvuzelas, he threatened to kill them with an ax. German prosecutors are contemplating whether to bring charges against him.
Ghana defeated the United States team 2-1 today. Boo hoo.
U.S. midfielder Maurice Edu at the end of Saturday’s 2-1 overtime loss to Ghana. (Stuart Franklin / Getty Images / June 26, 2010)