It was a day for shattering national stereotypes: yes, Russia is truly ready to welcome the world; no, the Gulf is not too hot for a summer football tournament; and, yes, the Swiss do have a sense of humour.
The first two statements have yet to be proven (although I have a great deal more faith in Qatari air-conditioning technology than I do in the ability of Russians to reverse, in less than eight years, their long-nurtured hostility to outsiders).
That third broken myth, however, about the Swiss being able to crack a joke as well as they craft a multi-function penknife, was proven in the mere five minutes in which Sepp Blatter, the Fifa President, made his speech.
"Football is a game of discipline and respect," he told us, in a perfect deadpan.
Yes, all the discipline and respect of an organisation that has never properly answered accusations of corruption. Nice one, Sepp!
"It is a combat game," Blatter twinkled, pausing for one perfect comical beat, "but in the spirit of fair play."
Ah yes, what could be more fair than a secret ballot, in which no decision is ever explained or justified? Stop it, Sepp, you're killing us!
"It is a game which offers a lot of hope to humanity, and to the youth of the world."
The youth of the world which, presumably, finds nothing more uplifting than the notion of 24 wealthy, middle-aged, unaccountable men in suits (sorry, make that 22 wealthy, middle-aged, unaccountable men in suits, as two were suspended for reasons which Fifa refuse to confirm) making arbitrary decisions about the future of the game. Sepp, please, my sides are in danger of splitting!
Then, like a true pro, he saved the best joke until last. "In football we learn to win, and that is easy, but we also learn to lose."
We learn to lose? We? When has Fifa ever lost? Fifa, with its secrecy and tax bubbles and its stranglehold on the world's game, wins every time.
After that, it was time for some physical comedy. The way Blatter nervously fumbled with the winning envelopes, as if he had no idea of their content, was pure Charlie Chaplin. He even remembered to look down at the winning name before reading it out. A bravura performance, Mr President! The Clown Prince of Fifa had us Swiss rolling in the aisles.
You may feel that I am enforcing another national stereotype here: that of the pompously entitled Englishman, full of righteous anger at Fifa's refusal to "bring football home" in 2018 or at least award the 2022 tournament to Australia or the United States, in which the football "Motherland" recognises its Anglo-Saxon kin.
That is not the case. In fact, I believe it is only right that England was overlooked in favour of Russia. Thanks to the wealth of the Premier League, spoilt English football fans can watch world-class footballers on their own doorstep for nine months of every year (as do Spanish fans with the Primera Liga, albeit to a lesser extent outside Real Madrid and Barcelona). They should count their blessings instead of demanding more.
As for the Dutch, who also lost out to Russia, they can and frequently do experience the Premier League party via a cheap flight or ferry. It is less easy for the impoverished citizens of Yekaterinburg to pop over for a match.
Does Russia have a crime problem? Yes, but so does South Africa, which hosted a reasonable tournament this summer, and so does Brazil, where we head in 2014. My son will be nine years old in 2018, and I would be happy to take him to Russia, even its wild Eastern frontier, for his first World Cup.
It would surely be more memorable, and quite possibly more civilised, than another trip to Sunderland (England's own wild East).
I make a similar case for Qatar, where the emotional reaction to Thursday's announcement spoke volumes about the passion for football, from the man on the street to the ruling family.
Would the Americans have celebrated in such a way? Of course not, because they have already hosted the World Cup once before, along with every other major sporting tournament. Australia, too, has had its fair share of top-drawer events.
As for the Qatar tournament itself, the result of the "would I take my son there?" test is a no-brainer. Would I take my son, by then 13, to a crime-free, hospitable and spectacular environment in which the frequent World Cup staple of public drunkenness is, by necessity, toned down? The answer is "yes".
When millions of other worldwide fans arrive at the same inevitable conclusion, they will experience a side of Arabic culture which we in the Gulf know well, but is all too often overlooked or actively distorted by global media.
And so, in both cases, it can be argued that Fifa made the right choice, that it snubbed the easy and safe options (England 2018, USA 2022) in favour of tournaments with greater risks, but also far greater rewards for the people.
We shall probably never know the truth about all the recent allegations made against Fifa. And that is no laughing matter, even for Sepp "Chuckles" Blatter.