||[Jul. 10th, 2006|04:49 pm]
Ack, many things on my mind.
First things first - yay Italy! The game was a good one, although I don't usually like games decided by penalty kicks, it was clear in this one everyone was really tired by the 120th minute. Italy scored their goal on a beautiful header, and would have scored another one had the man next to the one who put the ball in the goal not been slightly offsides. Oh well.
Unquestionably the most bizarre part of the game came in the 110th minute, just 10 minutes before it went to penalty kicks. Zinedine Zidane is the French star midfielder, who came out of retirement to play in the World Cup and who announced he was going to retire after this one. He was red carded and thrown out of the game for headbutting an Italian player in the chest (animated GIF version!) - the Italian player was fine after a little while. The incident was weird because you can clearly see there's a little pushing and jostling, then they exchange some words, then Zidane starts jogging away and gets a good five yards away before turning around, walking back and then letting loose on him. Apparently, this isn't the first time Zidane has been red-carded for stupid things, and it's not even his first head-butt. Yikes!
I went to jury duty this morning and plan on posting many, many observations later because I was fascinated by the whole thing. Unfortunately I didn't get chosen though :-(
The Nocebo Effect: Placebo's Evil Twin - very interesting article about how the placebo effect works both ways. Biology/psychology is weird. I loved this bit at the end:
But the mind is a funny thing, and generic responses to color go just so far in explaining the placebo or nocebo response. Consider this: In Italy, Moerman says, blue placebos made excellent sleeping pills for women but had the opposite effect on men.
The apparent reason? "The Italian national football team's color is azzurri," he said. "Blue."