While we often focus on what’s wrong with America, Peggy Noonan says we should celebrate all that’s right with our country.
Nick Hornby’s take on the World Cup, “We Are the World,” is characteristically brilliant.
The current New Yorker contains a fascinating article by David Remnick. In “The Moralist,” he examines Lennox Lewis’s inner workings–and what his beating Mike Tyson means to professional boxing.
Ronaldo scored two goals yesterday, and Brazil beat Germany 2-0 to win their record fifth World Cup title. The Brazilian striker, who suffered from a mysterious illness before his team’s ill-fated ’98 final against France, has exorcised his demons.
And although he won the Yashin Trophy for being the Cup’s best goalkeeper, German shot stopper Oliver Kahn could not hold Rivaldo’s 67th minute shot; the rebound spilled to Ronaldo, who tucked it away for the game’s decisive tally. “I am fully aware that this is the only mistake I made in the seven matches of the World Cup,” Kahn said after the game. “That one mistake was brutally punished.”
So World Cup 2002 is over. Though the semifinals and the final were rather lifeless, the earlier stages of the tournament were phenomenal. Michael Davies, writing on ESPN.com, sums it up nicely: “…the truth is this was a World Cup of highs and lows, of positives and negatives, of yin and yang. It was a World Cup of karma, of settled scores and of reputations built over years undone in an instant. It was not a World Cup, on the whole, of unforgettable football. But It was a World Cup that has, perhaps, changed the landscape, the hierarchy of worldwide football. Or maybe it hasn’t. We’ll see in 2006…”
“Puncturing Web Ads Before They Pop Up,” (NY Times; free registration required) is a good overview of ad-blocking software options. Ironically, when I viewed the article, it launched a pop-under window–the very sort of annoying advertising the article discusses combating.
In “The Politics of Futbol,” William Safire says, “Set aside the game itself; this is not the sports page. Consider instead the intelligence, geostrategic, cultural and diplomatic ramifications of futbol, with its World Cup played, as always, halfway between U.S. presidential elections.”
This World Cup has unquestionably been one of the most exciting ever. In the 72 years since the tournament’s inception, only seven teams have ever won the title: England, Brazil, Germany, Italy, France, Argentina, and Uruguay. This year, only Germany, England, and Brazil have made it to the quarterfinals, where they’re joined by Spain, Senegal, S. Korea, Turkey, and the US. England plays Brazil tomorrow morning at 2:30 a.m. Eastern, and the American team battles Germany at 7:30 a.m. Eastern.