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Monthly Archives: February 2010

To be a footballer means being a privileged interpreter of the feelings and dreams of thousands of people.-Cesar Luis Menotti
Our football belongs to the working class and has the size, nobility and generosity to allow everyone to enjoy it as a spectacle.-Cesar Luis Menotti

In 1976 Argentina underwent a military coup that plunged the country into seven years of fear and oppression. Many doubted whether Argentina could stage a successful World Cup in such circumstances.
The name Mario Kempes was written large across the 1978 tournament. He won both the Golden Boot (top scorer) and Golden Ball (player of the tournament). His six goals included 2 in the highly charged final.
Kempes (of Valencia) was the only foreign based player in the Argentina team. He typified the image of the dashing Latin footballer of the era.

The Netherlands accused the Argentines of gamesmanship in the final. The host team came out late and lengthy debates ensued about the legality of René van de Kerkhof’s plaster cast. There was an intensely partisan atmosphere in the Estadio Monumental. Argentina were heading for a 1-0 win when Dick Nanninga equalized a few minutes from the end. Rob Rensenbrink then hit the post in stoppage time. Argentina went on to win 3–1 after extra time. The Netherlands boycotted the post-match ceremonies.
Another enduring image of the tournament was that of Cesar Luis Menotti, El Flaco, Argentina’s sullen, long haired manager, seemingly chainsmoking his way through the competition.Daniel Passarella, Argentina’s captain, said of Menotti: He always knew exactly what to say to motivate his players. And he was always very calm. We only saw him get really angry once: just before extra time in the Final against the Netherlands. He looked at us and said, ‘Look around you. There are 80,000 of us and eleven of them. We’re not going to lose, are we?’ It was the type of shock tactic that the team needed. We took to the field again certain we’d win and we made the title ours.
The 39 year old Menotti won admirers by refusing to associate with the dictators, insisting that football and politics were not related.Interviewed earlier this year Menotti reiterated: I just don’t think a head of state has the right to muscle in on sports victories, neither a democratically elected one nor, as was the case back then, a rotten dictator.
Tunisia made history by beating Mexico 3–1. It was the first time that any African team had won a match at the World Cup finals.
The fact that only black and white TV was available in the host country gave us the unique situation of seeing France playing their game with Hungary in borrowed kit of white and green stripes, their blue being indistinguishable from Hungary’s red to viewers watching in black and white.

The DVD of this movie goes by the title The Boss. It has also been known as Black Bounty Hunter.
Two African American bounty hunters ride into a small town on the tail of a fugitive. On discovering that there is no sheriff, Boss Nigger assumes the role after outsmarting the cowardly white mayor .
Vincent Canby of The New York Times wrote: Fred Williamson gives an immensely self-assured parody of the Man With No Name played by Clint Eastwood in Sergio Leone’s films…
Fred Williamson (aka The Hammer) is a former American footballer who rose to fame in blaxploitation movies in the mid 1970’s (he also featured in the original Inglorious Bastards). He wrote the screenplay for Boss Nigger.
Director Jack Arnold, who made his name directing such sci-fi classics as It Came from Outer Space, Tarantula, Creature from the Black Lagoon and The Incredible Shrinking Man, was white.

Fifty days since anyone posted a comment on this blog…

The influence of bossa nova is still very evident in Brazilian music.
Isabel Gilberto de Oliveira (b. 1966) is the daughter of João Gilberto and singer Miúcha. Her uncle is singer/composer Chico Buarque. Bebel had an early introduction to the music business, appearing on her mother’s album Miucha at the age of seven, and appearing at the Carnegie Hall with her mother and Stan Getz aged nine.
Bebel’s Tanto Tempo album was released In 2000.nominated for two Latin Grammy Awards it sold over one million copies worldwide.

Plastov, Arkady Alexandrovich(Аркадий Александрович Пластов 1893 – 1972) was a Social Realist painter of the Soviet Union.
Plastov was born near Simbirsk (the birthplace of V.I Lenin that now bears his birthnam
e- Ulyanovsk). His family were traditionally icon painters. Plastov studied in Moscow from 1914-1917 and then returned to his home village.
During the Soviet era there was a strict adherence to social(ist) realism, and Plastov’s work is a great example of this artistic doctrine. He documented the building of socialism- the development of the kolkhoz collective farming system and the era of the five year plan . His work also showed the effects of The Great Patriotic War on the people of rural Russia.
Spring (Весна) was painted in 1954. The painting is considered a turning point in the history of Soviet art, marking a departure from socialist realism, reflecting the political relaxation in the Soviet Union under Nikita Khrushchev, an era which came to be known as the Khrushchev Thaw.

At Kartoshka 167 bossa nova may be king, but it is not the be all and end all. We aim to bring you cool sounds for your pad or car stereo, period.
So, here is a selection from Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass.
Hugely successful in the 1960s Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass sold 13 million records in 1966 alone. They won six Grammy awards, 15 gold discs and 14 platinum discs. In April 1966 they had four LPs in the Billboard Pop Album top ten at the same time.
Despite the mariachi influence and the strong Latin ‘flavour’ of their works and their revue show, none of The Tijuana Brass members had Hispanic roots.

In 1974 a new trophy was introduced, three times winners Brazil having being allowed to keep the old Jules Rimet. This was another tournament that Mr Havelange believes was determined by anti South American bias.
As in 1954 it seems that the best team of the era failed at the final stage to become world champions.
Under the former Ajax and Barcelona coach Rinus Michels The Netherlands implemented total football.
In the final the English referee Jack Taylor bravely awarded a penalty to The Netherlands in the first minute. Maier , in picking the ball out of the net was the first German player to have a touch. West Germany rallied however to win 2-1, Gerd Muller getting the winner in the 43rd minute.
Unlucky Scotland were the only side not to lose at game at the 1974 finals. No other side has ever won a match, remained unbeaten yet made a first phase exit.

Many will remember this bizarre moment as Zaire’s Mwepu Ilunga dashed out of the defensive wall to hoof the ball away before a Brazilian free kick. Zaire was the first sub Saharan team to qualify for the finals, but their appearance was a catalogue of errors (seemingly typified by Mwepu’s rash action) that did little to enhance the image of African football.
Learning that they would not be paid, Zaire had put in a half hearted performance against Yugoslavia and duly lost 0-9. Following this match their president intervened.The team hotel was closed to all journalists and presidential guards were sent to ‘keep an eye’ on the team, who were menacingly told that if they lost 0-4 to Brazil they would not return home.Mwepu’s actions were born of fear following these threats.

The ЗАЗ-968 Zaporozhets was produced from 1972 to 1980. Here is the charming ЗАЗ-968A, featuring a smaller engine and intended, it would seem, for the female driver.
Note: Since I wrote the above Mrs Kartoshka has informed me that the ЗАЗ-968 A was usually the car of older people, and that women drivers in the Soviet Union were not a common sight outside of Moscow and Leningrad.

Charlie Byrd was first introduced to Brazilian music in the late 1950’s by radio host Felix Grant. In 1961 Byrd participated on a diplomatic tour of South America for the United States State Department,On his retirn to the States, Byrd was working with Stan Getz, whom he introduced to bossa nova recordings by João Gilberto and Antonio Carlos Jobim that he had acquired on his trip. The result of their shared enthusiasm was 1962’s Jazz Samba LP.
Byrd remained a devoted champion of Brazilian music for the rest of his career. The tracks on this LP of Jobim compositions were recorded at various sessions between 1982 and 1999.

Personnel: Charlie Byrd (guitar); Maucha Adnet (vocals); Romero Lubambo (guitar); Hendrik Meurkens (harmonica); Ken Peplowski (clarinet, tenor saxophone); Bud Shank (alto saxophone); Scott Hamilton (tenor saxophone); Allen Farnham (piano); Chuck Redd (vibraphone, drums); Duduka Da Fonseca (drums); Michael Spiro (percussion).

Fred Zinnemann’s High Noon is regarded as a classic of the western genre. However, the director Howard Hawks was so appalled by its negativity that he made a ‘response’ movie- 1959’s Rio Bravo. Whereas the sheriff in High Noon is abandoned by the townspeople, John Wayne has a willing entourage of unlikely supporters.

It is the characters of his three main allies which give the movie its enduring appeal.

The delightful Walter Brennan plays Stumpy- a grumpy elderly deputy .

Legendary crooner Dean Martin (who’s overriding ambition was to be a success as a screen western hero) plays Dude- the town drunk who redeems himself heroically.

Teen idol Ricky Nelson puts in an appearance as Colorado Ryan , a young gunslinger. Hawks was dubious about using him on account of his youth, but his pull at the box office was such that his inclusion alone would guarantee the movie’s success.