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A D.C. United Christmas Part III: On Bobby Boswell

So I happened to be with Bobby Boswell, at the Eleanor Holmes Norton Christmas Party for D.C. kids, when the official announcement about his selection for the U.S. National Team camp was announced. Attempting to be an actual journalist, I asked Bobby--the MLS defender of the year--about his National Team aspirations. He has one career cap, as a reserve last winter vs. Guatemala, but he said last year's USNT camp was one of the best soccer experiences of his life.

"It's an honor to be there; the guys are so good," he said. "It's a pretty good litmus test--is that the word I'm looking for? It's too early for me to be using words like that. You can always say, 'I had a good year, I won this award,' but there you find out what kind of player you are. Either you fit in or you don't. I think last year I fit in, and I think this will be a better year for me. I have another year under my belt. The main thing is, soccer's soccer. You go out and play your game."

Plus, during camp, Bobby will be rooming with Alecko Eskandarian, one of DCU's five other invited players. He already lives with Troy Perkins during road trips, and Brian Carroll is on the quiet side, and he's sees so much of Bryan Namoff as a fellow DCU defender, so Esky seemed the natural choice.

"Esky's the only one that could really put up with me," Bobby said. "I don't think Esky cares either way. Like, if I'm annoying him, he'll say 'Bobby, you're annoying me.'"

Word. Can't wait to find out what happens when U.S. National Team prospects stop being polite and start getting real.

But this discussion was soon interrupted by a young man, Deshaun Kittrell. Earlier, the 12-year-old Deshaun had gotten Bobby's autograph while asking the following questions:

Deshaun: Do you play soccer? That's my team. [Pointing to D.C. United postcard]. What's his name, he's black?

Bobby: Freddy?

Deshaun: Yeah.

Bobby: Freddy got traded.

Now, Deshaun came back and said his favorite players included Bobby and Freddy. Bear in mind that Bobby can't remember the last time he cut his hair, and so he sort of looked like he had sort of just rolled out of bed.

Bog friend Denzel Kittrell guest-snapped this photo of Bobby and Judah Claus. (By Denzel Kittrell)

Bobby: Freddy's a good kid. We'll play him next year. He plays for Salt Lake.

Deshaun: Why's he play for Salt Lake?

Bobby: He got traded.

Deshaun's mother Rene: Excuse me, what's your name? [Holding a Domenic Mediate postcard] Is this you?

Bobby: That's not me, that's the other guy.

Deshaun's 10-year-old brother Denzel: What number is you?

Bobby: [Pointing to Bobby Boswell postcard] That's me. I don't have any gel in my hair.

Denzel: [Attempts to convince Bobby that he's actually Domenic]

Bobby: [Pointing to Domenic] See look, that's him, right there. He doesn't look like me.

Denzel: When do you play?

Bobby: We're in the offseason.

Deshaun: Can we get tickets?

Bobby: I don't have any with me.

Deshaun: Where you live at?

Bobby: Right down the street.

Deshaun: Do you have a big house?

Bobby: It's not big.

Deshaun: Are you rich?

Denzel: Do you got a lot of money?

Bobby: Not with me. I've got my rent money with me.

Then Bobby showed me a text message he received from Freddy Adu not long after the trade. The gist of the message was, I'll miss you guys, and take it easy on me when we play each other, and don't kick me too much. Huh?

Judah Claus, hard at work. (By Dan Steinberg)

"I kick him every day in practice," Bobby explained. "I'd try to toughen him up so I'd kick him all the time. Every day he'd complain about how much I kicked him."

Not long after this, a triumphant Judah Claus strolled by.

"You nailed it, Santa," Ben Olsen said to him. "You nailed it, buddy."

This was basically one of the top 10 Christmas parties I've ever been to.

By Dan Steinberg  |  December 19, 2006; 4:41 PM ET
Categories:  D.C. United  
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Next: A D.C. United Christmas Part IV: Leftovers

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