What we tend to do is act on what they say and then it is that way

Photobucket - Video and Image HostingIf you do a search for Zinedine you’ll be told by google that there are over 3,034 results for news stories relating to the headbutt incident. Never mind all the other stories listed and linked to. or just blogs about him. Isn’t it amazing? And don’t you feel just a tad sorry[1] for Italy whose world cup win is being ignored by the world?

But Zizou’s apology wasn’t really an apology now was it? I’m sorry for the kids that saw it, but I have no regrets? I wonder did he pay attention to what Roy Keane said after the Saipan Incident? Saying sorry, but I’d do it again if I had to? Is that really an apology? Surely if you are sorry for something then you wish you hadn’t done it?

Despite Zidane’s red card, he was handed the Golden Ball as the tournament’s best player. It’s a testament to both his brilliance against Spain and Brazil, and to his personality.

Err, no. He got the Golden Ball because the voting happened before the red card, so it can’t have been despite it, cause it hadn’t happened yet.

I finally got around to taken some photos of the new art in Dublin. There is a collection of statues on O’Connell St, and as Tues was a sunny day you can also see blue skies. If only there was an Elmer Fudd to go wabbit hunting it’d be great.
Although they are actually hares.

O'connell bridge There are a collection of these bronze sculptures along O’Connell St & Bridge. Mainly hares, although there is one which looks like a monkey sitting on an elephant[2] but according to Dublincity.ie it is actually a cougar and an elephant.

I’ll have to take a walk up Parnell square to see if I can see the rest sometime over the weekend. Unless I can’t be arsed. Or it rains. Or I forget. Or something else intervenes.

The sculptures are the first outdoor exhibition by the Hugh Lane gallery, and are all by Barry Flanagan.


  1. apart from Anne
  2. I didn’t take a photo cause I don’t particularly like it

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21 Responses

  1. anne says:

    Apart from me indeed.
    To be fair, France isn't in fact being a sore loser, and we did follow Italy's celebrations.
    And I would add that Zidane's speech was a little more than just "I'm sorry but I regret nothing", but I'll be accused of being biased… ;)

  2. NineMoons says:

    Nice pic sugar-pop.

  3. Clare says:

    Ok, I have a soft spot for all things French, am off there on my jollies in 11 days (not that I'm counting…yeah right!)but honestly, this man is meant to be a role model. How can he think his actions were justified?? He really is an amazing footballer but his record with red cards isn't something to be proud of….Zinedine is crossed off my list of baby names. Shame cos it ain't half cool :)

  4. Terri says:

    I don't follow football so I'll just say that's a really great photo, if the subject matter is a little odd (and I'm talking about the statue, not the footballer). Guess I'll have to mosey on over that way & take a look at these things myself sometime.

  5. Fence says:

    What else did he say Anne? We only got a much edited, chopped-up, voice-over translation. Though I do have to say that he is really very softly spoken isn't he? And looks a lot less threatening off the pitch :) You'd almost not recognise him.

    Thanks NM.

    Clare, happy holidays.
    Do you ever wonder if footballers would become footballers if they thought they'd have to be role models?

  6. Fence says:

    Thanks Terri. I was a bit bemused by the hare factor too. Especially after the monstrosity that was <a>Lady Hare and Dog by the Green last year

  7. NineMoons says:

    I always think that Roy Keane seems like the kind of person who'd be really soft-spoken and gentle and kind to his wife and kids but just transforms when he's working. Same with Zidane? And with a competitive sport, you get all kinds of adrenaline and testosterone stuff going on, so the brain is kind of by-passed. Like with road-rage – it can make perfectly normal people do things they'd never normally dream of. Stress reaction.

  8. Fence says:

    Over at Irish Eyes <a>Bernie Goldbach makes an interesting observation "the most athletic guys often are the ones who release their upset by a simple push, shove or headbutt."
    And that is from his experience training peoples not to react, which i'm guessing involves much provocation.

    The whole headbutt incident is made even more interesting because from what I can see most people are blaming Materazzi, and despite the fact that we may all use the "sticks and stones" rhyme to tell kids to ignore verbal abuse, in certain circumstances it seems that verbal abuse is worse than physical.

    And also the fact that Zidane's actions seem honest in comparison to Materazzi's taunting. Or De Rossi's (I think it was him, so long ago) elbow.

  9. Ann says:

    My sympathies are firmly with Zidane. Why is it okay for yer man to taunt him but not okay for him to react? If you're going to dish out insults, you have to be ready for any sort of aggro that produces. This has been blown up out of all proportions and it really is very sad to see Z. go out like this.

    On a happier topic – I LOVE the hare statues. I'm a big fan of Barry Flanagan. there was a great one in Chicago of a hare in a funny running pose that I always used to call my spirit animal. Looking forward to checking out the installation.

  10. anne says:

    Ah, Fence, now that's a lot to ask. Basically, he recognizes that the gesture is unforgivable, but he has much the same rationale as Ann – i.e. he understands that he had to spend the last 10 minutes of his career alone in the locker room (notice he didn't argue where De Rossi looked as if he'd done nothing wrong – I rest my case…*), but he's a bit peeved that he gets the entirety of the blame, when no one involved said 'oh but what Materazzi did was wrong too'. He knows that he should have held back, and he did, twice, but Materazzi kept repeating his stuff (and you know what they say, third time's lucky*).
    I guess his "I'm sorry" was indeed directed at kids and educators and 'normal' people, when his "I don't regret this" was exclusively for Materazzi. And he also added that he would always tell his own children to stand up for themselves, but never to resort to violence – and in a much more effective choice of words than that.
    The whole interview was in fact rather good – I thought – in that he does admit to everything, he doesn't look for any "extenuating circumstances", but he just feels that maybe Materazzi could be getting some of the heat.

    And yes he did have a few red cards (which is why, I suspect, he's not even trying to downplay his action), but then, so did Materazzi, who is very famous for provoking his opponents (and who had the gall to say "i'm a good guy")*.

    *: that was – obviously – my editorial input.

    Oops, got carried away.

  11. Fence says:

    Ann, aren't we always taught that violence is never the answer? But in reality, I tend to agree that ZZ was in the right, although possibly a bit silly.

    Cheers for that Anne, feel free to get carried away whenever you want :)
    I think that because, as you say, he is taking responsibility he comes across in a much better light. I agree, the difference with some of the other players and their fouls is that they tried to get away with it. Zidane may have been violent, but he was honest. And that, I think, is why most people seem to have no real problem with him.

  12. Ann says:

    Fence – I used to think that way, but now, in my cynical dotage, I believe that violence just might be the answer to certain questions.

    If a player had gone up to Z. and punched him or raked him or pushed him down and he'd head-butted that guy, they both would have gotten red cards. (I'm guessing.) So why is it somehow okay to taunt someone right over the breaking point?

    You're right- it was silly and really unfortunate. But oh so much fun to discuss.

  13. Fence says:

    I suppose because words don't inflict actual damage. Plus, it is harder for the TV cameras to pick up on verbal insults, so they don't look as bad.

    And yes, much fun is to be had in discussing it. Psycho-babble is great :)

  14. Talena says:

    Hi, Fence!

    I don't have any background knowledge with which to make intelligent conversation about this post. I just wanted to say hey, since I haven't been able to visit for a few days. I hope you're doing friggin' great. (I don't know why I used the word "friggin'" right there. It just burst forth from my fingers. Dang Tourettes! ;-D)

  15. anne says:

    Actually, I heard yesterday that some insults (that touch on the honor of the player – although how they judge that is anybody's guess) are punishable with a red card too.

  16. Fence says:

    Hey Talena, who said we needed intelligent conversation ;) And feel free to use friggin whenever the desire arises.

    Anne, isn't racist abuse one of those things? And look at you, all American with your honor :)

  17. anne says:

    I know, I'm trying to blend in in case I do get get that job. ;)

  18. Fence says:

    Ah, well in that case we'll forgive your lack of a u

  19. NineMoons says:

    And because I only ever read about hono(u)r in Robert Jordan books, I now things it looks weird to see it with a u in it. Except when it is spelt with a capital H and preceded by Your.

  20. omaniblog says:

    I'm still hoping someone will photograph the complete set of hares and put them up. But, if I read you right, you don't feel inclined to do it? I have a thing about hares.

    I'd never seen any as a child. They were mythical creatures.

    Until I was playing golf in Wiltshire, UK. There in the short rough, ears taut at full stretch, was one. And the beauty of its stride.

    Then I came across Kit Williams' golden hare, in his treasure hunt book, and that excited me more.

    Are there live hares in Ireland?

  21. Fence says:

    Omani, I've taken photos of most of them. You can see them over at <a>flickr, I think I'm missing two. Maybe three.

    And there are hares in Ireland. Like your experience, golf clubs are goo places to spot them. But I've often seen them about the place having their boxing matches