vintage garefrekes

I am a bit late to this news, blame it on moving/ working/ traveling schedules. This past May Kerstin Garefrekes retired from soccer. But even before that, after the 2011 world cup, she retired from the German national team and thus I have also been trailing off following the team closely. There are a few particular players I really enjoy watching, one is Kerstin Garefrekes, and the others are Homare Sawa, Aya Miyama, and Shinobu Ohno. The last three are midfielders of the Japanese team during the 2011 world cup. They are admired greatly (by me) for their field visions and skilled passing. I once compiled a video of all their incredible “drop” passes but decided not to upload for fear of copyright issues.

© AP / Rick Bowmer

“the” goal. USA versus Germany, women world cup 2003. © AP / Rick Bowmer

With Garefrekes, I have always loved watching her “runs” and passing from the wings. Ok, I don’t know the game very well in term of actual playing (hey, it could have been different if I got some training when little 🙂 ), but one of the key things is knowing “where” and “when” to run / make cuts to be open and seeing ahead of time where you can pass / cut the angles to get the ball behind the defenders. And i always love players running down the side and managing curls into the penalty area (that’s how England scored two goals in the 1996 world cup semifinal! pass it out to the wing, run in, pass in, headers, GOAAAL!!) . In any case, for those who did not follow, Kerstin Garefrekes was also involved in THE game that got me completely addicted to women soccer: the 2003 World Cup semifinal between Germany and USA. And, as a reward of being patiently waiting, here it is in full, vintage Garefrekes in one of _the_ best games in women soccer! Intense action starting at 14m30s , when, guess who, scored for Germany. This is also a game of SPECTACULAR goal protection from the German keeper Silk Rottenberg (and a young Nadine Angerer cheering on the side). INCREDIBLE saves after saves. The entire match after minute 14m30s was played in the German half! And she single-handedly preserved the score for Germany until minute 91…

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women’s world cup thread

Game 1: Canada vs China
– just have to create a thread here to say that penalty at the end was very pathetic. That referee has been blowing whistle Canada’s way throughout the 2nd half. At minute 90th, after all the hard-fought efforts by both sides. Pathetic.

17.jun.2015: Spain vs South Korea
– wow, that was close, hit the bar at 94th minute! But S.Korea makes it to 2nd round! and along with them is Sweden!! I was very impressed with Sweden in the only game i saw them, vs. USA . Well they’re going through, at the expense of Spain. First S.Korean goal was very nice. Second one: goal keeper was caught in no-(wo)man’s land..
– Onto 2nd round!!


hallo all, happy spring! also known as time i brace for full impact of blooming… in some random news, I have a new hand-me-up-from-younger-brother phone! it’s so fancy i still can’t figure out yet where to turn things on/off… but the (old) screen saver is restored, along with the ringtone, which also serves as music to start fantastic mid-April.
Photo0023Musically, i’ve been to only 2 events this entire year.. the last just this past weekend to hear Aisslinn Nosky and Christina Day Martinson and the H+H playing violin concertos, it’s really quite a privilege to have access at such close distance in Sander Theater at Harvard. Things have been quite quiet here with lots and lots of fighting with NaN’s and Arctic as usual… plus a newly picked-up challenge to deal with an old fear: water! We grew up in our family quite raw, just a bunch of kids with absolute no training for any skill whatsoever… and at the age of 21, i who finally had access to a swimming pool for the first time in life (in Alaska) determined it was time to learn how to swim. A Russian was recruited to aide the process. He took me to the pool 1 Sunday afternoon and said: “Look thadieu, the way i see it, our body is made up almost entirely of water, so you can’t sink! in you go!” . So, i jumped in, drowned.., made biiig splashing noise gurgling, Russian guy quickly flagged me up: “thadieu, look (pointing at a guy gracefully gliding in the other lane with loong beautiful strides), see how calm and quiet he is? Try that.” . Then he left! So back in the water i jumped.. and somehow miraculously sorted out how to float after drinking 1/2 of the pool by end of afternoon… Many years have passed, my swimming techniques have evolved.. simply from floating, then waving arms in some random direction and body suddenly moves! voila! swimming! Then there was that serious nearly drowning experience in open water with no-one around which got me discovering there’s a psychological hurdle.. all in all, we laugh pretty hard within the family when it comes to “swimming”. Anyhow, i thought the right way to address my fear is to sign up for “under-water hockey”, which involves taking a deep breath at the surface, then dive down to bottom of pool to hit the puck with a stick, then come back up to surface… But! luckily, there’s an “easier” sport: water polo! That, plus the survival-if-fallen-into-ocean course that i had to pass in order to get on ship this summer, had been occupying my mind for the last whole month…

The verdict: happy to report i passed the survival course with flying color (with an internationally approved certificate!!), and amazingly survived the first 4 water-polo games, with lots and lots of water drinking, panic, back and forth clinging to wall for support.. the rest of teammates seem to be having a good time playing with that ball while promising to keep an eye out so i won’t drown.. and we have 6 more games to play! I’m very determined to learn some sort of swimming by the end of this whole session.. already attempted was free style to move forward and back-stroke to get back on defense.. coz this doggie-paddling style is just not fast enough in water polo :-).

So that’s that. Meanwhile, i’m looking forward to some traveling between now and end of August! There’s this new Kasarova’s Händel’s recital in Mannheim that i might make it to, if i’m to make the Saanen’s recital..
Can anyone tell me if you can manage this website for ticket without your browser crashing? My screen generally looks like this after attempting
followed by a “plug-in failure” message… What the heck is java anyhow? I’m unwilling to spend time sorting out something that almost nobody uses anymore and that I’m even required to install/uninstall a bunch of things or even having to update operating system, all with potential system crash on the work computer… so might have to resort to calling Germany to try to get ticket…

pix post

the olympics is coming to an end, but not before one of my favorite events took place: cross-country 30km marathon.  so glad finally i get to watch the entire race (though had to re-watch most of it coz just when i flipped schedule around to wake up early to watch olympics, they started race at 3am EST!!!)  If i could ski properly, this would be something i’d love to train for :-).  Here’re photos of the amazing race.  It’s quite amazing to see again the racers from this photo finish 4 years ago.  The Polish, i already saw her winning a race earlier last week… she pulled out on this one, while the 3 Norwegians blew out the competition… absolute admiration for the climb to sprint to finish line by Marit Bjoergen.. In the US, you can rewatch the entire race here. Interestingly it’s 2 very knowledgeable guys with British accent commenting, with no interuption. super like. (Think you might have to verify some crappy relation with some cable company to be able to view, just call up any friend who has cables..)

starting line

starting line

and then there was three

and then there was three

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norway vs denmark

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sweden vs germany

euro-2013 women football semifinal, currently playing
wooooow, it’s exciting… will have some live commentary here…

one can’t take the eyes off the screen, madness running from both sides… a very good early chance for Öqvist… they both play similar style of firing long passes… which is big contrast to the French/Spanish style…
a VERY good chance for Laudehr, but a terrible shot..
1-0 Germany on a toe-line extension from a VERY good pass from Mittag!! that Swedish defense has been a bit shaky…
WOOOW, a great pass right across german goal… but no reciever…
WOOOOOW, a nice pass from Schellin into penaly area but just a bit off… this has got the be one of the most exciting match i’ve seen… freestyle sprinting and attack from all sides…
WOOOW, ABSOLUTE FANTASTIC save by swedish goalie, madness scrambling in front of sweden goal
Fischer lucky not to get a yellow or a penalty… dangerous free kick for germany…
did i miss something? why did Laudehr get a yellow??

Absolute frantic pace… Sweden need to settle down a bit…
1/2 time! i go find a drink to cool down!

2nd half! let’s see if me heart can take… here’s to sweden putting together a nice run…

the last line passing from Sweden is not very good, they’re very fast, but the passing is just not accurate enough…

gosh, they really ned to improve their passing…

sports update

nothing major, haven’t followed much of anything 1.ffc.frankfurt has done (i should) because we actually have a league of our own here between departments, co-ed “c-league” for the sort of beginners like me.  Due to lack of time/games/etc., they merged “c” and “b” leagues together, and one way led to another, we were in the final today against the all-spanish team.  These are quite serious guys, all dressed up in their national jerseys, muuuch more skillful than yours truly,  talked A LOT (in spanish) during the game as it should be, calling out where to pass, loads of dribbling, very nice 1-2 passings.  sadly, we lost in overtime 1-3 after 1-1 tie @ end of regulation, though we had our chances with one nice shot hitting the cross bar during regular time.  Haven’t run that hard in quite a while, ankle fully swollen now and legs want to fall off, but it felt GREAT.  As usual, yours truly played “right back”, the only possible position.   Read more of this post

more onion

first up:

A Vietnamese in the olympics women 20km walk race! she came in 36th at a time ~1hr33min, 8min34sec behind the world record setting champion Lashmanova from Russia! i currently watching via the fantastic “catch-up” function
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green onion

currently happening on ubuntu laptop. worked on mac too, i think should also work on windows, that cute green onion. don’t you just love it, live action, no commentary. onto women 10m synchronised diving now. yay. all courtesy of that lovely green onion (you see it in the picture?) . implication for operas and music worldwide too of course.

sports updates

really thought i could wake up for the boston marathon watch :-), oh well. it’s HOT today in Cambridge/Boston, the race officials allowed runners to skip the race and defer until next year if they choose to do so. Anyhow, the women’s race came down to a sprint (!!) with 1st and 2nd place decided within 2 seconds. I guess we don’t think too much about it, but if you really pause for a moment, that’s really amazing (how the body can last 2 hours+ (in ~30°C) running very fast and yet still able to sprint)

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