Every man and woman has obligations. Bearded Andrea Pirlo is no different. He is tasked with the duty to fight the tyranny of an unknown menace. To protect the world's depleted facial hair resources. To play football with orgasm-inducing skill. To make wine that gets people drunk in the classiest way possible. And, sometimes, to attend a kit launch while pretending that his soul isn't being waterboarded in an attempt to extract humanity's most valued secrets. This is one of those times.
Lured from his fortified bunker high in the Alps by the call of national team duty, Bearded Pirlo found himself ensnared in a trap. Hoisted in front of a press conference with teammate Gigi Buffon and manager Cesare Prandelli, Bearded Pirlo was tasked with helping to unveil a new Italy shirt irresponsibly constructed in a way that would not protect anyone from a nuclear fallout or spread of infectious disease.
Bearded Pirlo knew he should've seen this coming. His most trusted ally, an incontinent goat known simply as Davide, warned him of impending danger before he made the long journey down from the mountains by refusing to eat the waffles prepared for his breakfast. But Bearded Pirlo did not listen. And so he suffered the consequences.
He only wore the flimsy blue top after his cohorts refused to join his attempt to intimidate the press by going bare-chested and staring each of them in the eyes for an uncomfortable period of time. He then tried to suppress the silent howls emanating from every molecule of his being and force a smile to part his noble whiskers. The smile would not come.
As his brothers in football politely bared their teeth, an unfamiliar panic set in for Bearded Pirlo. He reached behind his back with both hands and clenched a homemade dagger, which his grandfather gave him long ago explicitly for a moment like this, just in case one of the hacks dared to question his doomed attempt to feign approval. Finally, Bearded Pirlo was able to muster a fraudulent smirk that satisfied his outward duty and internal rebellion. The panic cleared.
With that, Bearded Pirlo was released from the shackles of commerce and allowed to roam free on the training ground. His joy was evident and profound.
In the distance, Davide could be heard wailing an ancient song of triumph as he once again relieved himself without realizing it.
- Andrea Pirlo