Thursday, August 24, 2006

Red Sox end streak

The Boston Red Sox have ended their depressing losing skid and finally won a game last night.

Boston 5, LA Angels 4
Winning pitcher - Jon Lester (7-2)
SV - Jonathan Papelbon (33)
HR: David Ortiz (45), Wily Pena (11)

I don't know if you noticed but David Ortiz is getting very close to the American League's single-season home run record set back in 1961 by Roger Maris with 61 home runs. Ortiz is only 16 home runs away with less than four games remaining on the regular season schedule. Is there a possibly that he can break the record? There definitely is. Now, here's the big question, can a DH win the MVP award?!? I'm personally an NL guy being that my overall favorite team resides in St. Louis, Missouri.

British Jews are about to celebrate 350 years of being readmitted to live in England. Don't expect London Mayor Ken Livingstone to be a part of the festivities at all.
The anniversary of official Jewish re-entry into England in 1656, when Cromwell is believed to have granted the community the rights to practice openly and build cemeteries, has been marked throughout the year with a series of cultural, educational and official events presented by individuals, Jewish organizations and cultural institutions.

At the most visible anniversary event of the year so far, Prime Minister Tony Blair, BBC Chairman Michael Grade and other officials joined Britain’s chief Orthodox rabbi, Sir Jonathan Sacks, and 500 invited guests in a June service at Britain’s oldest synagogue, the Bevis Marks Synagogue in London’s East End.

After the British national anthem was recited in Hebrew, Blair told the congregation that Britain’s Jewish community demonstrates “how identity through faith can be combined with a deep loyalty to our nation.”

Jews first arrived in Britain with William the Conqueror in 1066 and served as special representatives of the king. For over a century, they worked as moneylenders and coin dealers.

According to Richard Huscroft, author of “Edward I and the Jews,” by the mid-13th century more than one-third of the circulated coins in England were controlled by a few hundred Jews, leading the king to levy upon them untenable rates of taxation and creating rampant anti-Semitism.

Conditions became so bad that the Jews volunteered to leave in 1255, but their request was turned down by Henry III, who considered them royal property.

In 1290, a short time after money lending was made heretical and illegal in England, Edward I expelled the Jews, who fled to continental Europe.

Not all historians agree about the exact date of the Jews’ official re-entry into England, or if re-entry in fact was granted by Oliver Cromwell at all.

According to Eliane Glaser, a Jewish scholar who also works for BBC radio, when Rabbi Menasseh of Amsterdam appealed to Cromwell in 1656 at the Whitehall Conference of traders and businessmen to allow the Jews back into England, no verdict was given.

The following year, the few hundred Jews still living in England but practicing covertly were turned down when they petitioned to have a synagogue and a cemetery.

“The process of re-entry was gradual and didn’t just happen all of a sudden in 1656,” Glaser told JTA. “Bevis Marks Synagogue wasn’t founded until 1701. There was much debate at the time about who let the Jews back in, and it was probably people who didn’t like Cromwell that claimed it had been him because he had organized the Whitehall Conference.”

In 1894, the first “resettlement day” was celebrated by Jews in Britain, and Glaser hypothesizes that they chose to celebrate Cromwell because he was more popular at the time than Charles II.

“In a way, these anniversaries do provide an opportunity to celebrate the achievements of Jews in this country,” Glaser said. “But we have a vibrant history of questioning and engaging in critical debate, and if we celebrate tolerance only, we can’t see what has gone wrong and can’t do anything to address current issues like religious disintegration.”

In any event, this year’s celebrations have prompted many British Jews to get in touch with their heritage, marked most notably by sold-out lectures on British Jewish history, as well as the public’s use of the newly re-opened Jewish Chronicle archives.
Comedian Jon Stewart is headed to Ohio for a week of reporting from The Ohio State University. No word yet on how the Michigan fans feel about this recent turn of events.
On the four shows, to air at 11 p.m. each night of taping, correspondents Samantha Bee, Dan Bakkedahl, Jason Jones and John Oliver “will provide political commentary from various locations in and around Ohio, to give viewers a unique perspective that only a true outsider can provide,” according to “The Daily Show” announcement.
Religion and politics are appearing in a lot of books this fall.
Others, such as Jonathan Miller, a Democrat and Kentucky's state treasurer, see a positive, unifying role for religion. His "The Compassionate Community" advocates a "values-based policy agenda," based in part on biblical writings, and includes an afterword by former Vice President Al Gore, a Democrat, and a blurb from Republican Christine Todd Whitman, the former New Jersey governor and head of the Environmental Protection Agency.
Alaska Governor Frank Murkowski can treasure the last few months of the office because he won't be working there next year.
With 87 percent of precincts reporting, Sarah Palin, a former Wasilla mayor, won the GOP nomination with 51 percent of the vote. Former state legislator John Binkley came in second with 30 percent. Murkowski polled just 19 percent.

Palin will next face Tony Knowles, a former two-term governor. Knowles handily won the Democratic primary with 74 percent of the vote, beating state Rep. Eric Croft.

Elections also were held Tuesday in Wyoming, where incumbent Dave Freudenthal easily won the Democratic gubernatorial primary, and in Oklahoma, where three-term Lt. Gov. Mary Fallin won the Republican nomination in District 5 in her bid to become the state's first female member of Congress since 1920.
I'm not surprised in this bit of news. Outfielder Shawn Green is one of the most famous Jews to play the game since Sandy Koufax and Hammerin' Hank Greenberg.
“It’s something that’s always intrigued me,” said the baseball player, who was traded from the Arizona Diamondbacks. “New York is head and shoulders the largest Jewish population in the country, if not the world, and it will be an interesting and fun experience for me.”

Green made headlines in 2004 when he sat out one game for Yom Kippur, but played in one as well.
New York is leading the NL Eastern division so the question now is: Will Shawn Green be playing on Rosh HaShanah or Yom Kippur?

No comments: