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Tuesday, 21 June 2016

Thing To Be Today But Only In A Good Way: ultra.

I understand there's some sort of a football competition being held in France at the moment, and that a group of people called ultras is causing violent unrest.


Ultra what?

Ultras seem to be ultra-keen and ultra-organised supporters of a particular football team. Ultras have been around since just before the Second World War, and started off in Brazil.

What's the difference between an ultra and a member of any other supporters' club? 

It seems to be some extremely efficient organisation, which allows the ultras to put on performances of support as they watch the game.

Ultras of SS Lazio doing their thing.

Unfortunately, in some cases, it also allows them to cause trouble in a particularly focused way. 

Is being an ultra a bad thing? No, because the trouble-makers can't be true ultras, can they, because they're doing nothing but harm to their team. 

Ultra-violent, maybe. But not ultras at all.

Thing To Be Today But Only In A Good Way: ultra. I can't see that an organised passion for crochet, or playing the piano, or even truly supporting a football team is going to do much harm. The word ultra is Latin for beyond, from ulter, which means distant.

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