Love to Learn, Learn to Love.

JuicyLesson 254: Huge choice on this Canada Day … Fear and Loathing … Chicago murder … More World Cup … Algeria and Libya; Backward is as Backward Does …

Today’s feature is an extremely well-presented video which although around 42 minutes in length feels like half-that. If you ain’t got what feels like 20 minutes to spend on this, then there’s nothing more I can say to convince you or to say how sorry I feel for you. What a pity. What a shame. How we break each other’s hearts and cause each other pain with respect to the late, great George Harrison, RIP.

As for the rest of you, have a look at this story centred on the cold-blooded murder of a Chicago teen, Hadiya Pendleton, earlier this year, allegedly by two men who have been arrested and charged with this “accidental” shooting of a young fifteen-year-old who showed so much promise. Apparently, Hadiya was mistaken for a rival gang member and was wasted as a result. What a genuine, needless loss of one precious life in a city where approximately 500 people a year are sacrificed on the altar of what may generally be referred to as “gun” violence.

Hadiya’s parents, suffering so, are central to this video, especially the poor mother.

Michelle Obama – I know that Barak grew up in Chicago but am huncertain about his wife’s background – attended Hideya’s funeral. Hadiya, herself, had been present at the inauguration of this President last January.

Before proceeding with our daily dose of World Cup news and action pics, let me just interject an interesting tidbit regarding a baseball game that I’m listening to on TV on Monday evening pitting the NYY against Tampa Bay at Yankee stadium. The game is headed for the bottom of the 12th inning with the Rays having nudged across a run in the top of the inning, giving Tampa a 4-3 lead, but that’s not the point.

The reason I bring the game up is that the offensively-challenged, last place Rays, have benefited from eight walks – count ’em – in addition to two hit batsmen. You’re not going to win a lot of games issuing to what amounts to ten free passes to first base.

As a matter of fact, what turned out to be the winning run was scored on a walk, a stolen base and two-out base hit by second baseman Logan Forsythe who, as well as having the key hit in the game, has made ten assists in the field. What a night. Which leads me to our musical selection for today which is the Four Seasons’ “What a Night”**, and what a day it will be today, Tuesday what with Wimbledon, the World Cup and NHL free agency day.
Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons do “What a Night”, a very catchy tune indeed.

Bye bye Daniel Briere. Hello PA Parenteau. Josh Gorges is on the block. Pretty happy about that. Gorges finds it hard to accept that the Canadiens want to unload him. A rumour going around is that Gorges has vetoed a deal which would have sent him to Toronto. Hopefully he ends up somewhere as long as it’s not here. In my book, Gorges is good for blocking shots, and that’s about it unless “intangibles” are considered. Bull-shit, man. Would it kill Gorges to score more than two goals per year, and that’s in a good year.

World Cup

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It took France almost 80 minutes to figure out Nigeria. France had the better of the play but Nigeria put up a good fight. Final score was France 2; Nigeria 0. Now the delicate and deliberate French side awaits the winner of the match between Germany and Algeria scheduled for later this afternoon.

Was France full value for its victory over homeward-bound Nigeria? Definitely, especially in the second half. I called Nigeria to beat France and was wrong, dropping my record to 2-3. Looking forward to watching Germany take on Algeria on Monday at 4 PM. It should be a gimme for Germany but my heart is with Algeria in this one. Actually, I don’t like either team that much.

A friend that I met on the road, in Tunisia actually, way back in the early seventies, Richard was this fine, young American’s name and the brief story I am about to recount is not a case, at least in this instance, of an ugly American coming into a culture with which he was unfamiliar and disrespecting it.

It’s actually not a story … It’s about something that happened to Richard Diehl – wonder if he’s still around – in Algeria and Libya which Mr. Richard had visited prior to arriving in Carthage, Tunisia, where I was staying. Anyway the way Richard told it, there were hardly any women out in the streets of Algeria and Libya – same with Tunisia, by the way – especially after dark. All there were were men, walking around, holding hands with each other, seemingly enjoying themselves while the women, remain in the home, occupying themselves with looking after the children and with other domestic chores.

Anyway, the point of the story is this: “narrow-minded” does not go far enough in attempting to describe the reactions of the Algerian and Libyan males, who constantly bothered Richard, who wore his hair long and had a few strands of tiny beads, hardly visible, around his neck. Hands were actually laid on my friend, the way he tells the story anyway, with remarks born of ignorance and a lack of familiarity with certain ways of life in a society quite different from their’s – remarks like “just like a woman”, with no disrespect intended for Bob Dylan who has a number by that same name ” … she aches just like a women but she breaks just like a little girl …”

I do not appreciate narrowness of mind which is why I am not totally behind Algeria in its match against Germany, scheduled to start today, Monday, in about 30 minutes. I understand that things may have changed in Africa north of the Sahara over the years, but somehow I doubt it. Backward is as backward does and I realize that I am generalizing when I make this remark.

Final score: Germany 2; Algeria 1

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Above: Andre Schuerrle of Germany (in white) scores his team’s first goal past goalkeeper Rais M’Bolhi of Algeria in extra time during the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil Round of 16 match between Germany and Algeria at Estadio Beira-Rio on June 30, 2014 in Porto Alegre, Brazil. (Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images)

Below: a joyful Schuerrle celebrates in the wake of his tally.
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And finally, Germany’s winning marker during extra time:

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Above: Mesut Oezil of Germany celebrates scoring his team’s second goal in extra time during their 2014 FIFA World Cup round of 16 match between at Estadio Beira-Rio on June 30, 2014 in Porto Alegre, Brazil (Photo by Martin Rose/Getty Images).

As for Tuesday’s pix: in the early game, I pick Argentina to defeat Switzerland while later, the upstart Americans will be sent packing by an undefeated and untied Belgian side. On Monday, I called Nigeria over France which didn’t work out that way. In the second game, I correctly picked the Germans to defeat Algeria. So I am 3 up and 3 down with 3/4 of the Round of 16 completed. Every day, for three days now, it’s been the same thing: one win, one loss.

Let’s see if I can get both of my picks right today.

Peace. Most. Definitely.

And just by the way, Happy Canada Day or whatever you call this day off from the sweat shops.

2 Comments

  • Darren says:

    Love Frankie Valli and that song. Chicago is very dangerous. I went once but I didn’t leave the dtown core which was very clean and impressive. Much cleaner than Mtl

    • Matthew Friedman says:

      Always look forward to your picks and insights. Breezy, sporty well written.. Not to be a nitpicker… I am pretty sure Obama(Barry)grew up in Hawaii and came to Chicago after Harvard to work as a community organizer. It became his adoptive home town and his jumping off point into politics. It’s always been a rough town but enough with the shootings!! Nuts!is the world descending into total chaos?

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