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December 2, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review July 18, 2006 / 22 Tamuz, 5766

Historic head butt shines spotlight on trash talk

By Mitch Albom


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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | By now you know about "the head butt that shook the world." It happened last Sunday, when French soccer star Zinedine Zidane plowed his noggin into the chest of an Italian opponent.


This would be minor news any other time. Just another athlete losing his temper. Except this head butt came in the overtime of the World Cup championship game, an event that comes once every four years and is watched by a billion people.


And it may have cost France the title.


What could Zidane possibly have been thinking? How could he lose his cool at such a critical moment and get thrown out of the game (which France eventually lost in a penalty-kick shootout)?


Well, a few days ago, we found out. Sort of. An apologetic but unregretful Zidane revealed, in a French TV interview, that what the Italian player said was so awful, "I would rather have taken a punch in the jaw than have heard that."


Naturally, everyone wants to know the words. Some, early on, said the comments were racial in nature. (Zidane is of Algerian descent.) Some claimed the Italian called Zidane "a terrorist." Zidane would confirm only that the remarks were about his mother and sister.


"They were very harsh words," Zidane told the TV interviewer. "You hear them once and you try to move away. But then you hear them twice and then a third time. ... I am a man and some words are harder to hear than actions."


In the immediate aftermath, most people sided against Zidane. But as the days passed, I noticed a shift. With the suggestion that the Italian's insult was about his mother, some seem to forgive the Frenchman, to begrudgingly admire a guy who would throw it all away to defend the family name.


According to London's Daily Mirror newspaper, Zidane's mother feels that way. She said: "I praise my son for defending his family's honor.


"No one should be subjected to such foul insults on or off the football pitch, and I don't care if it was a World Cup final. ...


"Some things are bigger than football."


Is it true? Are some things bigger than football — or baseball, basketball or hockey? At first blush, you say, come on. Trash-talking is a part of sports. You shrug it off. You don't let it unnerve you.


But this seems to be unique to the playing fields, not other areas of employment. For example, say you're in a business meeting with a client, and he suddenly insults your family or your race. Are you going to "shrug it off" and make the deal anyhow? Or are you going to storm out?


Let's say you're in a butcher shop, about to buy a few steaks, and the butcher makes a crack about your heritage or your family's dignity. Are you going to carry on, or are you going to throw the meat at his head and never go back again?


It's a sign of the times when people say that trash talk, words like "whore" and "terrorist," and numerous expletives are simply "part of the game." Maybe they are. But since when did that become OK?


When did "normal" sports behavior include a running monologue of curse words and insults?


Yes, I also feel that whatever was said, Zidane had too much riding on that moment to lose his cool. You always could yell something back. Head butting in the chest isn't exactly quid pro quo.


But I also agree when Zidane said on TV: "My action was inexcusable, but the real culprit is the one who provoked it." The Italian, Marco Materazzi, has yet to receive even a slap on the wrist. He has acknowledged insulting Zidane, although he told an Italian newspaper, "I didn't say anything to him about racism, religion or politics. I didn't talk about his mother, either."


Hmm. What's left?


Years from now, Zidane may be remembered as an athlete whose temper cost him perhaps the biggest moment of his career. Or he may be remembered as the guy who finally said, "Enough."


Either way, his mother's statement "some things are bigger than football" is a pretty interesting thought. It's even more interesting that, in today's sports world, her sentence, not whatever Materazzi said, is considered the radical statement.

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