Friday Bookmark Dump

Items that I have to use now because they're growing a little stale and I don't feel like going whole hog on them:

In a development that seems intended to drive Dan over a cliff, Amway, everyone's favorite pyramid scheme, announced yesterday that no less a personage than RONALDINHO HAS SIGNED ON AS A SPOKESMAN for thier vitamin line.

(The Nazis from Amway make those Herbalife types he ran afoul of look like Girl Scouts)

So if the Brazilain superstar ever invites you to a lecture by a "financial planning expert", or starts drawing circles on a whiteboard, run screaming from the room.

Don't say you weren't warned.

The lovable scamps who run North Korea, who were pretty annoyed that their Southern neighbors weren't willing to share WC 02 with them, are now raising a stink over the WC qualifying match between the two countries scheduled for Pyongyang next month.

THE DEAR LEADERS FLUNKIES aren't about to let the South Korean flag be flown or the South Korean anthemn to be played at the stadium, per FIFA rules. They have proposed a "folk song" be sung ("If I Had a Rifle (I'd shoot you in the Morning)"? "Chop off your head Tom Dooley"? "This Land is My Land, This Land is My Land"?) and that they both salute something called "the unification flag".

Apparently the fact that if they are not separate countries then there's no reason to hold the game escapes them, unlike the starving peasants who try to sneak across the PRC border looking for a meal.

They've appealed the matter to FIFA. That's one committee meeting I'd love to sit in on.

SOMETIMES YOU JUST HAVE TO WONDER WHAT PLANET SOME REFEREES COME FROM, EXACTLY

For some reason I recalled the famous match from 1994 between Grenada and Barbados where Barbados scored an intentional own goal and then defended the Grenada goal as the grenadians tried to do the same.

I went looking and sure enough it - like everything else except EPL footage - is on YouTube.

[youtube]ThpYsN-4p7w[/youtube]

I'd try to explain this but SNOPES does it better than I could.

Finally: like me, you were probably under the impression that the push to construct FieldTurf soccer fields in Africa was an effort to provide poorer countries with a surface that didn't need nearly so much maintenance to keep it from burning up.

But according to The Mali Daily News ("For News You Can Trust") MAINTAINING ARTIFICIAL GRASS MAY BE MORE WORK than they expected.

Which may not mater, since apparently the engineers who were upposed to install the stuff are missing anyway.

It's always something.