Not feeling the mood to really write today, so just some reactions to news stories of interest.
First off, I think most people have seen the video of University of New Mexico soccer player Elizabeth Lambert and her aggressive play. NY Times had an article today, about those plays "in context." There are some obvious fouls in there, but I tend to cut her a lot of slack. I've never actually played competitively, and I struggle with all the off-the-ball jostling that happens when I do play with players who have. The nudges, the tugs on the shorts, the jabs into the ribs, etc, but I believe it's all a part of the game.
Even in the adult rec league I played in in Helena (co-ed, players from 18 into their 50s, etc), there were aggressive actions that were definitely questionable for the level of play. I even remember pushing this woman out of the way who was considerably slower than me, causing her to fall to the ground and tear up her thigh a bit. In my defense, she was trying to shield the ball as a defender, whereas I had made a 25 yard sprint on a breakaway. I really think it should have been an obstruction call, as she was not going to play the ball, and I had overtaken her.
The point is though, in the heat of competition, sometimes things happen. I do think Lambert's gotten the short end of the stick, especially in the highlight video. I'm sure most players would definitely have some questionable actions in 90 minutes of play . . .
The other article that caught my eye today was about a Korean wedding tradition:
These are fixtures of a South Korean wedding, as much so as the wedding officiant. Before entering the wedding hall, guests line up in front of the cashier’s table to hand over an envelope stuffed with cash. The cashier opens the envelope and registers the guest’s name, and the amount given, in a velvet-covered ledger — often while the guest is still standing there.
I hadn't heard of this one, and the article talks about how this tradition is not being followed by some. The main reason mentioned here is the appearance of impropriety, especially for politicians or high level executives - where large gifts can seem like bribes.
The other part of the article talks about how weddings tend to be status symbols:
This part is definitely true, even in America. I've had cousins whose weddings probably cost well more than $300 a guest, and had 300+ guests (though I've also had cousins who've had very modest weddings as well). The luxury weddings seem crazy to me.
In South Korea, where “face” is famously cherished, the measure of a family’s social standing is seen in the number of guests at weddings, as well as the amount of money given and the sumptuousness of the banquet. At funerals, the number of wreaths presented by friends, business associates and local politicians is a comparable social metric.
“Here, a wedding is less a celebration than an occasion for a family to show off,” said Lee Yoon-ji, who runs a wedding management agency and photo studio in Seoul’s upscale Kangnam district. “For instance, if the bride’s family finds its guests are much fewer than the groom’s, it’s humiliating.”
While I'm single now, and marriage doesn't seem likely for me in the near future, I think any wedding I do would be relatively frugal. Maybe even a destination wedding, with only a few guests. I'm not one to get caught up in pomp and circumstance, and believe a wedding should be a celebration - which is one reason I love the JK wedding entrance, and other entrances and first dances in the same vein. Whether the people can dance or not, they're having fun. I'm not sure why some people believe weddings have to be solemn affairs . . .