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Google to downgrade pirate sites in search results
Google is altering its search results to de-emphasise the websites of repeat copyright offenders and make it easier to find legitimate providers of music, movies and other content.
The move is a peace offering to Hollywood and the music recording labels. This year, Google joined other Silicon Valley heavyweights to help kill legislation that would have given government and content creators more power to shut down foreign websites that promote piracy.
The Motion Picture Association of America issued a lukewarm response, saying it was “optimistic” the change would help steer consumers away from piracy.http://www.kengriffeyjrshoesnyc.org
“We will be watching this development closely – the devil is always in the details,” MPAA senior executive president Michael O’Leary said in a statement.
Next week, Google will start using “valid copyright removal notices” to rank its search results, according to a Friday blog post by Google’s senior vice president of engineering, Mr Amit Singhal.http://www.griffeyshoesonecheap.com
Google typically ranks websites based on how many other sites link to them, on the belief that sites that get more links are more trustworthy and useful. But Google also regularly tweaks its formulas to reflect special circumstances.
In this case, sites with high numbers of copyright-removal notices may get bumped down in rankings. In effect, that will help users find legitimate sources of content without removing any pages from its results completely. Google did not elaborate on what it considers to be valid notices.
Google’s icy relationship with content creators has thawed slightly.http://www.kengriffeyjrshoes6.org
Last month, Google said it would offer a US$50 (S$62) -per-month TV package over a super-fast fiber network in a Kansas City test bed. The package would offer mainstream channels including Nickelodeon.
Google, which is based in Mountain View, California, also sells movies and music through its Google Play store on mobile devices that use its Android operating system.http://www.jordanheels2012online.org
But a US$1 billion copyright lawsuit filed by Viacom against Google’s YouTube in 2007 was re-instated by a federal appeals court in April after a lower court threw it out.
And last week, court papers showed that the Authors Guild is demanding Google pay US$750 for each of the 20 million books it has scanned in a 7-year-old case. AP
Griffey comes through in 9th as M’s end losing streak
“It took a little old-fashioned Ken Griffey Jr. magic — and perhaps the inspiration of Don Wakamatsu’s first career ejection — but the Mariners finally snapped out of their recent funk with a dramatic 4-3 victory over Toronto on Thursday afternoon at Safeco Field.
Griffey drove a run-scoring single to right field with one out in the bottom of the ninth to cap a three-run rally that ended Seattle’s five-game losing streak.griffey shoes
The winning rally came shortly after Wakamatsu got tossed in the eighth inning by umpire Andy Fletcher after Ichiro Suzuki was thrown out trying to steal second with the M’s trailing 3-1.
“I’ll get tossed every night if I need to,” said Wakamatsu, who thus wasn’t on the field at the end of what turned out to be his 100th victory as a manager.
“Just to be able to watch that in my office was special,” he said with a sly grin.ken griffey shoes
The ultra-calm Wakamatsu went nose-to-nose with Fletcher for about a minute before getting the heave-ho, much to the delight of 20,452 fans at Safeco Field who were just happy to have something to yell about at that point.
But the Mariners finally got things going in the ninth. With American League saves leader Kevin Gregg on the mound, Seattle loaded the base on singles by Mike Sweeney and Jose Lopez, followed by a walk to Milton Bradley.
Casey Kotchman then drove a long foul ball into the upper right-field seats before taking a walk to force in a run that closed the gap to 3-2 with no outs.
Josh Bard then tied the game with a sacrifice fly to left, bringing Griffey up for his game-winning hit off Gregg, who had just one blown save in 13 prior chances.ken griffey jr shoes
Griffey, who is still hitting just .191 and has been through a rough stretch of criticism recently, left the clubhouse without talking to the media. But his teammates were happy to speak for him.
“I think it meant a lot to him,” said Sweeney. “The past couple of weeks have probably been two of the toughest of his career and yet he knew he had the backing of everyone in this clubhouse.
“He had every single guy in this clubhouse cheering for him and I’m sure he had every single person in this city cheering for him. He’s Mr. Mariner and he came through in big way today.”"
Arizona Diamondbacks give Justin Upton $51.25M deal | MLB
Justin Upton has lived with high expectations virtually since the day he picked up a baseball bat.
Now at 22, with two full major-league seasons already behind him, he says he welcomes the challenge of living up to the $51.25 million, six-year contract he signed Wednesday with the Arizona Diamondbacks, the second-largest deal in team history.
With his parents Manny and Yvonne looking on proudly at a news conference, the outfielder said he understands the responsibility that comes with this big a contract at such a young age.ken griffey jr shoes
“I do kind of put that pressure on myself,” he said. “I want to be great, that’s the thing. If you want to be great, then you set your goals higher.”
Upton earned his first All-Star berth last season, when he hit .300 with 26 homers and 86 runs batted in.ken griffey shoes
His statistics are compared favorably with those of some of the game’s greats at the same age. His OPS (on-base percentage plus slugging percentage) of .836 compares with the early numbers of Al Kaline, Mickey Mantle, Ted Williams, Ken Griffey Jr. and Alex Rodriguez.
“There’s a lot to live up to,” he said, “and I think I’m ready for that.”ken griffey jr shoes sale
He gets a $1.25 million signing bonus, half on April 15 and the rest on July 15. He receives salaries of $500,000 this year, $4.25 million in 2011, $6.75 million in 2012, $9.75 million in 2013, $14.25 million in 2014 and $14.5 million in 2015.
“We view him as a core player, one of our key pieces,” general manager Josh Byrnes said, “and as we view the next six years the kind of guy we want to build around.”
The only bigger contract in Diamondbacks history was the $52.4 million, four-year deal Randy Johnson signed in 1999.cheap ken griffey shoes
Upton has had the pressure of high expectations for years, following the path of his older brother B.J., who was the No. 2 overall draft pick in 2002. Justin was one better, chosen No. 1 by Arizona in the 2005 draft.
He played less than two years in the minors before being called up by the Diamondbacks in 2007.
Batting gloves protect hands
Omir Santos tried on his new batting gloves, said to slow the impact of a harmful fastball down to the mere annoyance of a junkball, and voiced excitement.
“I think it’s going to help,” the New York Mets catcher said. “It sounds like it’s going to work.”ken griffey shoes 2012
The latest high-tech protective product in a sport that’s slow to accept innovation, the batting gloves are manufactured by the startup company XProTeX, which hired former All-Star Reggie Smith to go around spring training trying to persuade big-leaguers to switch.
Bob Watson, Major League Baseball’s vice president of on-field operations, said his department already has given its approval, which is necessary for all on-field gear.griffeys
“We looked at the data. No, I didn’t put it on and take a fastball,” said Watson, a former All-Star himself. “Now, is this going to stop all major injuries? That I can’t tell you, but according to the data, it should cut down on broken bones and severe injuries coming from pitched balls.”
? The Chicago Cubs agreed to terms with Cuban defector Juan Yasser Serrano, 21, a right-handed pitcher.griffeys 2012
? Aaron Harang was selected by Reds manager Dusty Baker to be Cincinnati’s opening-day starter for a team record tying fifth straight season.
? Houston All-Star first baseman Lance Berkman will sit out the Astros’ spring-training opener against Washington because of a bruised left knee.
? Texas Rangers outfielder Josh Hamilton probably won’t return to the field until next week because of a bruised left shoulder.cheap griffeys
? Alex Rodriguez singled, Colin Curtis hit a game-ending, three-run homer and the New York Yankees beat the Pittsburgh Pirates 6-3 in Tampa, Fla. Yankees owner George Steinbrenner watched in the ballpark bearing his name as the World Series champs won their spring opener.
? Phillies top pitching prospect Phillippe Aumont allowed five runs in the third inning of Philadelphia’s 13-6 victory against Florida State in Clearwater, Fla. Aumont is one of three prospects the Phillies received in an offseason trade that sent Cliff Lee to the Mariners.
? Tim Hudson pitched two sharp innings and rookie Jason Heyward doubled and scored as the Atlanta Braves beat the New York Mets 9-5 in Kissimmee, Fla.griffey shoes
? Jeremy Bonderman pitched two shutout innings after missing most of last season with circulatory problems in his right shoulder and Mike Rabelo hit a tiebreaking single in a three-run ninth to lead the Detroit Tigers over the Toronto Blue Jays 7-6 in Dunedin, Fla.
? Baltimore third baseman Miguel Tejada made an error in his debut at his new position and the Orioles defeated the Tampa Bay Rays 12-2 in Sarasota, Fla.http://www.cheapkengriffeyshoes2012online.com
? Major League Baseball has settled a lawsuit it filed against a baseball card maker for allegedly stealing trademarks. The Upper Deck Co. has agreed to pay $2.4 million on sales of licensed cards in 2009.
Reds, Baker have deal through 2012
Dusty Baker brought in a tailor during his first spring training as the Reds manager, getting the clubhouse staff ready to look good for the day when the marooned franchise would finally win.
“I said, ‘Man, we’re going to the playoffs, dude,’” Baker related. “I want them all looking good, clean. And I want them believing that we’re going places.”ken griffey jr shoes
Two years later, the staff freed those snazzy suits from their protective plastic wrap. And the manager who picked up the tab got a two-year contract extension and a chance to make sure those suits get a lot of wear.
The Reds announced the deal Monday, a reward for the team’s first playoff appearance in 15 years.ken griffey shoes
“I think we got here sooner than a lot of people thought – to the playoffs,” general manager Walt Jocketty said. “I think a lot of it is due to Dusty’s leadership.”
Baker is in the final season of his original three-year deal. The front office approached him during the season to talk about an extension, and the sides closed in on an agreement last week while the Reds were clinching the NL Central title.
The superstitious Baker wanted the deal to last two years.griffeys
“I’ve had some of my best success on two-year contracts,” Baker said Monday. “I don’t know why.”
Baker’s coaching staff also was offered two-year extensions before the club worked out, attended a downtown rally and headed to Philadelphia. The Reds open against the defending NL champions on Wednesday.
The Reds were the biggest surprise of the division champions, winning the Central despite a young and inexperienced lineup and pitching rotation. Baker kept it together during one of the tightest pennant races in years. The Reds and Cardinals weren’t separated by more than three games from mid-May to mid-August.
The division title was a huge breakthrough.griffeys 2012
Cincinnati hadn’t been to the playoffs since 1995, when Davey Johnson took the Reds to the NL championship series, then got replaced by owner Marge Schott, who simply didn’t like him. The Reds went through five more managers before hiring Baker, who presided over a quick rebuilding process.cheap griffeys
The Reds traded Ken Griffey Jr. and Adam Dunn during Baker’s first season, beginning a change from power-dependent offense to one that can win by going from first-to-third on a single – a category in which they led the league this season.
“It was very difficult (in 2008),” Baker said. “You know that you’re rebuilding at that time. And then you’ve got to get new leaders, you’ve got to get a new face or two for the organization.”griffey shoes
The Reds brought in third baseman Scott Rolen last year and shortstop Orlando Cabrera in the offseason, adding two veterans who have been to the playoffs. They helped a core of young players pull off the unexpected championship, one that puts Baker in select company.cheap griffeys 2012
Baker led the Giants and the Cubs to the playoffs before coming to Cincinnati. He joined Bill McKechnie as the only managers to take three NL teams to the playoffs. Nine have taken three different teams to the playoffs overall – McKechnie, Johnson, Tony La Russa, Jim Leyland, Billy Martin, Lou Piniella, Joe Torre and Dick Williams also did it.
Given the team’s young core, Baker thinks the staff is going to get more chances to look good in those suits.cheap ken griffey shoes
“To me, this is just a first step hopefully in a long line of wins, in a long line of excellent years,” Baker said.http://www.cheapgriffeysonline.com
Mariners go into Winter Meetings “open-minded,” but not likely to be bidders for high-priced free agents
The tearing down of a 101-loss Mariners team has been under way since before the disastrous 2010 season ended.
Only 14 of the 25 players who opened the season with the Mariners are still on the 40-man roster and two of those, Matt Tuiasosopo and Rob Johnson, are not considered favorites to make the squad next spring. Mariners general manager Jack Zduriencik continued his reworking in recent days by trading third baseman Jose Lopez and non-tendering pitcher Ryan Rowland-Smith.griffeys
Zduriencik arrives in Florida on Sunday for the annual baseball winter meetings looking to accelerate his plans to rebuild what has been torn down. The Mariners already have youngsters Justin Smoak, Adam Moore, Michael Saunders, Dustin Ackley and Michael Pineda either at or near the majors, but must figure out where they fit and how to bolster an offense that ranked among the worst in the last 40 years.
“I’ve always believed that you just have to acquire talent,” Zduriencik said before leaving for the meetings, which begin Monday and conclude Thursday morning with the Rule 5 draft. “As you move forward, you win with good players. You may go in to the meetings with a game plan thinking that X, Y and Z is the thing you need to do, but then, as it unfolds, I think you need to adjust.
“You realize, ‘Maybe I can’t go down this path to do this, but this helps me.’ “griffeys 2012
Zduriencik lost out in bidding on free-agent pitcher Rich Harden at the winter meetings in Indianapolis a year ago. But then, during an airport conversation on the way home with Phillies general manager Ruben Amaro Jr., groundwork was laid that resulted in a deal for star pitcher Cliff Lee just a week later.cheap griffeys
The Mariners plan to keep their on-field payroll at roughly the same amount as the $91 million spent on opening day last season (an additional $2.5 million was spent on players no longer with the team and Ackley’s major-league contract). That’s left the team little room to pursue higher-priced free agents and led to speculation Zduriencik will attempt a trade or two to reshape his lineup while continuing the rebuilding plan.
It was just two years ago, at the winter meetings in Las Vegas, that Zduriencik helped orchestrate a 12-player, three-team swap that landed Franklin Gutierrez and others in exchange for a package centered on closer J.J. Putz. Zduriencik could try to move his current closer, David Aardsma, because the pitcher stands to earn between $4 million and $5 million in arbitration for a rebuilding club not lacking in high-powered bullpen arms.
Seattle has been linked to trade rumors involving Arizona Diamondbacks outfielder Justin Upton, through the asking price for him is expected to include several of the young prospects the Mariners are looking to in their rebuild. There have been lesser rumors about the Mariners possibly dealing for Diamondbacks third baseman Mark Reynolds and then trying to trade Chone Figgins.griffey shoes
For now, Figgins — who played second base last season — appears to be the replacement for Lopez at third base. But at age 32, with a hitting skill-set that appears to duplicate leadoff man Ichiro, it’s tough to see where Figgins — owed $27 million the next three years — truly fits on a team not expected to contend before 2012 or 2013 at the earliest.
The Mariners also need somebody to man second base if, as expected, Ackley does not make the team out of spring training. Other priorities include finding a capable catcher who can share time with Moore as he tries to prove he belongs in the major leagues.ken griffey jr shoes
Seattle also must find a way to jump-start an offense that scored only 513 runs, the worst total in the majors since the designated hitter came into effect in 1972. Areas that appear easiest to supply a boost in would include DH and left field — especially if the Mariners don’t believe Milton Bradley and Saunders can handle those spots.
Zduriencik cautioned that, even with so many youngsters in the fold, he isn’t handing out jobs just yet. Players young and experienced will have “an opportunity to compete for jobs” next spring, but he won’t hesitate to make a move this coming week if it benefits the team.ken griffey shoes
That could include moves to bring in “veteran leadership” and to “fill some of the needs that we have” with older players if the right ones come along. Zduriencik noted that several of his younger players still have minor-league options and could be sent to Class AAA in the short term if they show they aren’t ready.http://www.griffeysonlinestore.com
“I think you go in open-minded,” he said. “And I think that’s what our plan is, I’m very open-minded. I know what I’d like to accomplish. Whether we can, or cannot, remains to be seen. But I would be able to float in one direction or another if I felt it could help us in the long-term.”
ASICS Australia runs safely on Juniper Networks
Juniper Networks, the industry leader in network innovation, announced that ASICS Australia, a leading sports footwear and performance apparel vendor, has deployed a highly-integrated security, routing and switching solution running the Junos operating system. This deployment enables ASICS to support continued business growth, improve operational efficiency and comply with ASICS global security requirements.http://www.nike5soccercleats.com
Due to its rapid growth in the local sportswear market, ASICS Australia recently relocated to a larger office in Eastern Creek, New South Wales, taking the opportunity to upgrade its network, with particular emphasis on security. Alphawest, a wholly owned subsidiary of Optus, provided ASICS with Juniper Networks SRX240 Services Gateways and EX2200 Ethernet Switches to create a cost-effective, secure and highly-reliable branch business network.
“It is critical our network is secure and is based on best-in-class IT infrastructure to support our growing business,” said Andrew O’Neill, IT manager, ASICS Australia. “The Juniper Networks solutions we have deployed bring our infrastructure up to the standard of the global corporate IT environment and increase operational efficiency by enabling us to maximise the benefits of secure remote access.”tiger shoes
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Juniper Networks is in the business of network innovation. From devices to data centers, from consumers to cloud providers, Juniper Networks delivers the software, silicon and systems that transform the experience and economics of networking.
Ken Griffey Jr. says he left because he was “a distraction” to team
Ken Griffey Jr. says he retired abruptly last year because he felt he’d become a distraction to the team.
“I’m not upset,” he said. “I think people thought I was upset about certain things, but that’s not the case.”
Griffey said he merely feared that people he’d grown close to on the team would try to talk him out of retirement if he stuck around for a press conference. griffeys 2012
So, I asked him, if everything else was fine, why hasn’t he spoken to former manager Don Wakamatsu since he walked away from the team and the game back on June 2?
“My phone rings,” he said, implying that Wakamatsu should have called him. “That’s just the way it is.”http://www.onitsukatiger2012.com
Players and Wakamatsu himself say that the pair didn’t speak for the final two weeks of Griffey’s career. One player told the Times last summer that Griffey erroneously believed that Wakamatsu had been the source of the Sleep Gate story in which the future Hall of Famer was said to be napping in the clubhouse during a game in May.
The player said Griffey shared his opinion with others on the team and only realized weeks later — after he’d already retired — that Wakamatsu was not the story’s source. But today, Griffey merely says he wasn’t upset at the time and left because he feared he’d become a distraction to the team.
Griffey was asked what he has to say to fans disappointed by his abrupt departure. ken griffey shoes 2012
“You want me to apologize for something that I felt was right? I felt that it was right for me to leave. I’m not going to do it. Because it’s not intended to hurt people. It was a decision that I made. I made that 15 years ago…there are some people who are upset and some people who are not. I can’t worry about it. I had to do what I thought was right for me.”
Griffey had indeed spoken for a long time of retiring without fanfare or a press conference. Again, though, one wonders why — if he insists he left with no ill feelings and had simply planned to leave this way all along — he didn’t extend his manager or general manager the courtesy of a phone call. And why, to this day, he still hasn’t spoken to a manager he had a close relationship with in 2009. He did call team president Chuck Armstrong, but, typically, if nothing’s wrong, the manager and GM do get calls and are offered an explanation when a player suddenly retires.
So, today, the question was asked and answered. Griffey’s phone rings is his answer. That’s all he’s prepared to say about it. We can keep asking the same question over and over again, but I doubt we’ll get a different answer.
So, that’s his explanation. Whether or not you accept it is up to you. cheap griffeys
The bottom line, as I’ve written before, is that this franchise needs as many of its few icons to come back within the fold. It says a lot that one of the most popular, if not the most popular, public figures for this team was not a player, but a broadcaster. The death of Dave Niehaus left the Mariners reeling back in November, not just because of the human being they lost, but also because a part of the organization died with him.
Griffey said it will be hard for the organization and those who met Niehaus up-close to get over his death from a heart attack last November at age 73. He was asked whether it will be odd not having Niehaus around on Opening Day.king griffey shoes
“Yeah, it’s odd,” he said. “If somebody tells you it isn’t, it is. Definitely, looking around and not seeing those white shoes, those tight pants he wears and that semi-tight shirt. And that voice. I think that’s the biggest thing. That voice saying hello to you, teasing you, having a good time at the ballpark.
“I think that’s the thing that a lot of the guys who were here over the years are going to really miss. And even the guys who knew him for a year or so, they’re going to miss him, too. But I’ve known him since 17, so like I said, in Seattle he’s like the grandfather to a lot of guys. I know he was one to me, so I’m going to miss that. You’re not going to be able to replace that. You can replace a player, but that voice, you can’t do it. It’s going to take 50 people and even those 50, it’s still not going to be the same.”
Griffey may not be the most popular guy for some fans right now, but he is a future first ballot Hall of Famer and arguably the most famous face for the franchise around the world of baseball and at-large.http://griffeys2012.weebly.com
He just got back from a trip to the Philippines, where he was serving as a goodwill ambassador on behalf of the United States government. Now, he’ll be an ambassador of sorts within the organization, especially when it comes to spreading the message to younger players about what’s expected of them.
“This is the organization I grew up in,” he said. “So, if there’s going to be an opportunity for me to be in baseball, it’s going to be here. I had an opportunity to get a chance to do it. It’s a lot of learning because it’s a little different. It’s not going to change. I’m still going to be the same person. You’re going to know how I feel.”
And what’s his main message going to be?http://kengriffeyshoes2012.weebly.com
“Hard work doesn’t start during the game,” he said. “Hard work starts the night before.”
Regardless of what happened last year — and several good people did lose jobs because of the events of 2010 — the organziation has to try to put it in the rear-view mirror. It will take time for some to forgive Griffey. And some fans may never do that. That’s their choice.
But in my view, you do have to put the events of last year into the context of a 20-year career. If some of you want to include 1999 in that context, again, it’s your right.
You’ve read my stuff about Griffey and know how I feel about what went on last season.http://cheapgriffeys.weebly.com
But you also know, if you’ve kept reading this space, that I believe the organization, in the wake of Niehaus’s death, had to find some way to bring Griffey back into the fold. That he was too important a part of Mariners’ history — good and bad, but mostly good — to be estranged from the city he spent most of his career in.
Griffey said he has no regrets about coming back to play in 2010 after what could have been a storybook sendoff in 2009.http://kinggriffeyshoes.weebly.com
“No,” he said. “I mean, things happen. Through no fault of its own, things happen. I got to meet some great people last year. If I wouldn’t have done it, I wouldn’t have had an opportunity to meet some of the people in Seattle that I did meet…and who still call me today. So, no, I’m not sorry that I came back.”
It may take time for some to get the appreciation back that many fans felt in 2009. And some may never get it back. But the team had to try.http://www.nikesoccercleatsmvp.com
Griffey came today and offered his explanation. It may be enough for some, not enough for others, but it’s a start. And it’s as good as it’s going to get.
We’ll see where things go from here.
LeBron James could challenge Michael Jordan for ‘best ever’ title
Jim Boeheim is back from another successful Olympics, part of Mike Krzyzewski’s coaching staff for the men’s basketball team that brought home the gold medal from London.
Boeheim talked about the Olympics and some of the players on Team USA with ESPN Radio host Colin Cowherd. Boeheim told Cowherd that most people don’t realize just how difficult it is to win the gold medal, even with all the NBA talent on the United States team.nike heels
“I thought the players were unbelievable. I think that there’s no realization yet that these other teams in the world can actually beat us, and they can. It doesn’t matter who we have, these other teams are teams that have played together for 10 years. We were in a a 2-point game with Lithuania late in the game. We were in a close game with Argentina, we had a close game with Brazil. Obviously, we were in a close game with Spain. And we had a good team. … It’s a team game, and in one 40-minute game, anything can happen.”
Boeheim also talked about some of the players on Team USA, and was especially generous with his praise of LeBron James. Cowherd asked Boeheim if James is a different player now compared to when he joined Team USA in 2005.nike heels for women
Here’s some of what Boeheim had to say:nike high heels
“Ten times better player. Some of it is maturity. He’s a leader; he was a kid when we first got him. … He’s a 6-9, 260-pound point guard-forward-center. He guarded the post guys. They always say a guy can guard five positions, I’ve never seen that. I’ve heard about it. This guy can guard five guys. he can guard your center, he can guard your small forward, big forward, point guard, two guard. You put him on anybody and he can guard them.”
So, just how good is James … and how good can he be?jordan heels
“I’ve always thought Michael Jordan was the best player that I’ve ever seen. I always have and and I didn’t think it was close. I’m not so sure any more. And I love Michael Jordan. I’m not so sure anymore. This guy is 6-foot-9 and 260 pounds, and he’s getting better. He works on his game. His shooting is getting better. He’s a phenomenal, phenomenal basketball player. I love this game, I love the history of this game. I know we’ve had great, great players through the years. He’s like Magic Johnson with Michael Jordan-type skills as well.”
Volleyball coach mentions Michael Jordan while recalling Destinee Hooker’s path
U.S. coach Hugh McCutcheon paid quite the tribute to Destinee Hooker while talking about her path to volleyball stardom.
Hooker was a last-minute cut from the Beijing Games team that won a silver medal. But instead of pouting over the slight, Hooker emulated NBA great Michael Jordan — who was cut from his high school basketball team — by returning more determined.jordan high heels
“Sounds like Michael Jordan getting cut as a sophomore, right?” McCutcheon said after Hooker’s team-high 24 points helped the Americans beat South Korea on Thursday to advance to the gold-medal match.
“She just loves the moment of competition, and that’s the great thing to have in an athlete, a person who relishes that moment, who wants to be out there.”nike dunk heels
The 24-year-old Hooker, a wing spiker, was promoted to the national team two years ago.
“I don’t think she’s been off the court since then,” McCutcheon said.nike dunk sb heels
Hooker’s athleticism has never been in question. She played basketball and was a high jumper on the track and field team at the University of Texas before switching full-time to volleyball.
But her ability to overcome adversity had been in doubt.nike sb heels
The 24-year-old Hooker broke into tears while recounting her past struggles trying to live up to the expectations created by sister Marshevet, who was on the 4×100-meter relay team that won gold in Beijing.Jordan Heels 6 Rings
“When I was younger, being told I cannot do some things and now I’m at this level that I never thought I’d be, it’s truly a blessing,” Hooker said while wiping away tears. “Having people in my life who are there with you, they know you can do it and they want to push you through it. It’s a lot but when you have people like that in your corner you can get through anything.”
Hooker pursued her volleyball dream after being spurred on by her family and McCutcheon, who said Hooker has worked hard to improve her footwork, blocking and technique to add consistency to her natural talent. Coming from an athletic family — both her parents played college basketball — certainly helped her mental stamina and physical development.
“She’s incredible. She’s playing like a vet right now and it’s very easy to play with her,” captain Lindsey Berg said. “And I’m lucky that’s who I have to set up because she makes my balls look good.”nike jordan high heels
Hooker has become one of volleyball’s premier players after overcoming those struggles plus knee surgery last year, when she was also the MVP of the World Grand Prix. Perhaps the biggest obstacle was the constant comparisons to her sister, although she learned to channel that into a positive, too.
“That’s what really pushed me as an athlete, I saw my sister succeed, I saw her do so much and I thought I wanna be just like her,” said Hooker, who likely will finish second in scoring at the London Games. “And now I’m in that spot and I’m doing this for her and my family and I’m glad I didn’t give up.”air jordan high heels
Hooker hopes to compete with her big sister in Rio de Janeiro in four years. The U.S. is hoping to enter those games as the defending champion, with a second straight final rematch against Brazil standing in the way.nike sb high heels
“She’s spectacular, she’s got every attacking shot you need and is a great blocker,” Brazil wing spiker Jaque said. “We’re going to have to be ready for her, she’s the U.S.’ top player.”
Follow Paul Logothetis at http://www.nikeheels2012online.com
Usain Bolt up there with Muhammad Ali, Pele and Michael Jordan as ‘greatest’ sportsman of all time
Bolt was recalling his two defeats to Yohan Blake in this year’s Jamaican championships. “Blake did give me a wake-up call at the trials,” he said.
“He kind of just knocked on my door and said, ‘Usain, this is an Olympic year, you’ve got to get serious. You’ve got to remember that I’m here and I’m ready to go.’ That was good for me. I lost in the trials and it really opened my eyes to what was going on.”dunk heels
Blake thinks working with the double Olympic 100 metres and 200m champion is a gift, an inspiration, and he would be right. But it works both ways, as the more senior of them described. “He said that in training he always tries to be in front of me and that’s true,” Bolt said. “He’s really kept me on my toes all season. When I lost to him I went to my coach [Glen Mills] and said, ‘Do I need to be worried? He said, ‘No, three hard weeks of training and you should be OK’.”air jordan heels
The heat was off by the time Bolt gave the most compelling press conference of his career. It was after midnight in the Olympic Stadium and the stunts had all been pulled. He had joked with the volunteer who was looking after his kit box, won the 200m in 19.32sec, pressed a finger to his mouth as he crossed the line, thrown in a couple of celebratory press-ups on the track, kissed the ground, borrowed a photographer’s camera to take some snaps and performed his obligatory lightning bolt shtick.
All the showman’s tricks had been played for the gallery and the world had been instructed: “I’m now a legend. I’m also the greatest athlete to live.” So now it was time to reveal his other, more thoughtful side: the one beyond the crowd-pleasing cabaret, itself a mixture of self-aggrandisement and parody.womens jordan heels
Remember: by the time he had given the lucky photographer his camera back, Bolt was on the other side of his “mission”. He was the world’s fastest man at 100m and 200m and a double Olympic champion. No track and field athlete can match the lustre of his four-year record in Beijing and London. So what next? He was already working on that.
First, the 4×100m relay in a discipline where Jamaica pulled off the trifecta in the 200m final (Bolt, Blake, Warren Weir). “The fact that both of us have run fast this year means there could be a record. But you can never know with the relay,” Bolt said. “It would be a good way to close the show.”cheap nike high heels
He speaks now with the assurance of one who knows he could stop tomorrow and take a ledge in history with Pele or Muhammad Ali. Or Bob Marley, still regarded as the ultimate Jamaican icon.cheap jordan heels
The odds are strongly against Bolt chasing a hat-trick of sprint titles in Rio de Janeiro in 2016 but he sounds half-serious about picking up the gauntlet thrown by Kenya’s wonderful 800m champion, David Rudisha, who said he was willing to drop a distance to confront the lightning man.
we see Bolt’s all-seeing, academic side. He was already alive to that possibility before Rudisha called him out. “I don’t know if I’m going to stay around the 200 or try something else. I’m going to sit down with my coach and discuss it,” he said.
“But Yohan Blake’s going to be there, so it’s going to be good. If I trained well I could take Rudisha at 400m. Anything more and I don’t think I could do it.cheap nike heels
“I was watching his 800m and I think he went through the 500m in 56sec. My personal best at the 500 is one minute. So he’d be way ahead of me. At 400m I think I could take him. Not now, but I could.”
intriguing observation confirms that Bolt thinks in assignments, in chunks of time. He is not just blowing along with the breeze. And the truth is that Blake had him rattled in those Jamaican championships. Nor was he completely sound as he opened his campaign with a 9.63sec victory over his younger friend in the 100m.
“I really came here a little bit off, but I said if I focused I could come here 90 per cent and do it. I did just that,” Bolt said. Few elite athletes could overcome those doubts, especially in an event where the margins of victory are so tiny.
Yet Bolt, as we saw twice on the London track, is blessed with almighty self-belief to go with his huge stride and speed: a confidence that allowed him to unfurl his talent with unanswerable power and precision.nike heels 2012
Even he, though, is daunted by the long road to Rio. “When I get to 30 I’ll think about retiring also because athletics is way too hard. It’s rough, day in day out. As you can see Yohan Blake is running 19.4 already, his personal best is 19.2 [for the 200m]. He’s running 9.7. So in the next four years he’s going to be firing. I’d like to get out early before he starts running too fast.
“[Rio] is going to be a hard mission. Both these guys [Blake and Weir] are training too well. I’m going to be 30. They’re going to be 26. Both these guys are training extremely well and I think I’ve had my time. In life anything is possible, but that’s going to be a hard reach, because there’s going to be a lot more talent coming up, and these guys have stepped up already. I’m not looking that far. I’ve made myself a legend. I’m just going to enjoy it right now.”
Before and after the show, there is calculation and cunning. During it, there is a sublime skill of mixing the jokey and the serious. The whole world saw Bolt messing about with the young woman who was looking after his kit as he stood on the starting blocks. “I was looking at her and she looked kind of nervous,” he explained. “I said, ‘Are you nervous?’ She said, ‘Yes’. I said, ‘Why?’ And she said, ‘Because I’m so excited’.
“That’s what I like to do. I like to talk to them and smile with the person carrying my bag, just to show appreciation. To meet the athletes, they’re over the moon, so for me to interact with them is good.”jordan heels 2012
These are astonishing vignettes. They defy the old orthodoxy of intense concentration and being ‘in the zone’. Maybe Bolt does this to relax himself as much as the volunteer. The clue might be Blake’s revelation: “Usain’s always told me, ‘You’re not doing this for the people or the fans, you’re doing this for you’.”
An obsession with the here and now is not required to see that Bolt is out in front of Carl Lewis, Michael Johnson and all the other greats of Olympic track and field. Reporters wanted to place him in another pantheon, beyond the Olympic lanes.nike high heels
“I can’t say if I have the status of Ali or Pele. I’ve really set myself high in track and field,” Bolt said. “Michael Jordan was the greatest in his sport and I’m the greatest in mine. Ali was the greatest in his. I’m guessing I am in that category but I’ll let other people decide that. I just know I’m a legend.
“When it comes to Bob Marley, Bob Marley is one of the greatest Jamaican legends. He did great for the country before me. I’m just carrying out his duty, pretty much. I wouldn’t say I’m greater than him. We had the same goal: to make Jamaica one of the most loved countries in the world.”jordan heels
His desire to inspire sounds genuine, and touching. It could hardly be anything else on an island of 2.9 million where athletics has become the biggest source of national self-esteem, and where elevating superstar behaviour would not be tolerated. Again, with a depth of seriousness in his voice Bolt said: “I know a lot of kids look up to me. When I came home from Jamaica even the girls were saying, ‘I want to be the next Usain Bolt’.
know I inspire a lot of kids. I always encourage them to work hard. I get a lot of messages on Facebook from kids who ask me about coaching. I try to give them inspiring messages. I push myself hard because I know they want to see my run fast and do good. There will be rough times. It’s all about how you focus and how much you want it.”
is such a good comic, too. Asked about his apparent celebration with the Swedish women’s handball team after the 100m (it was no such thing, he says) he started out: “Ha. Ha. Ha,” to show he was one step ahead of the questioner.jordan high heels
Asked how a wife or girlfriend could ever reach his standards he said: “That’s a tough question, huh? I don’t know. For me it’s all about falling in love. There, I said it. If I could find the right girl it wouldn’t matter what she did. But I’m looking forward to it. I’m a bachelor. Huh.”
the euphoria, you could sense the weight lifting from him. The slab of expectation was off his back, and it was time to settle a score with Lewis, who has questioned the legitimacy of Jamaica’s triumphs in the sprints: “I’m going to say something controversial. Carl Lewis: I have no respect for him,” Bolt said. “It was really sad for me when I heard what he’s saying. I’ve lost all respect for him. All respect.
“It was all about drugs what he was saying. All about drugs. For an athlete to be out of the sport and to be saying that is really upsetting.”nike heels
But Lewis cannot lower the colours of champion who has dominated from Beijing to London and filled both congregations with awe. “To set a goal for yourself, and then achieve it, is just a wonderful feeling,” he says.
“You can’t really explain because it’s not going to hit you until you get home, sit down and talk to your friends, reminisce.
“And they’ll say, ‘Do you remember when you got injured here, and injured here, and beat there?’ Those are the things that will bring tears to your eyes. Because you’ll remember the journey.”
Mike Cameron says he’s retiring as Mariner
On his way to Seattle earlier this week, Mike Cameron decided he wanted to retire as a member of the Mariners.
It was the one stop in his major league career that most felt like home for the former All-Star center fielder.griffey shoes
“It’s a long way from home for me, but it’s also been a special home for me,” Cameron said on Friday night. “I felt like it was only fitting to try to slide my way into the Mariner family for the rest of my life.”
Cameron made that decision official Friday when he signed a one-day employment contract that allowed him to retire as a member of the Mariners organization. Cameron was in town to throw out the first pitch before the team’s home opener.ken griffey shoes
It was a largely ceremonial move, but one Cameron wanted to do while he was here. Cameron was signed for the 2012 season by Washington, but informed the Nationals shortly before spring training that he planned to retire, concluding a career that spanned 17 seasons and seven teams. Cameron also played for the Chicago White Sox, Cincinnati, the New York Mets, San Diego, Milwaukee, Boston and Florida.
“The days that I played here and replacing a legend and the fact that the people took hold and took shape of me and walked me through everything, gave me a great opportunity to start my career off right,” Cameron said. “This is basically where I want to finish.”ken griffey jr shoes
The four seasons Cameron spent in Seattle matched the longest stint he spent with one franchise. But while his four seasons with the White Sox came at the beginning of his career when Cameron was just getting started, his time in Seattle was arguably the prime of Cameron’s career.king griffey shoes
He was an All-Star in 2001 and also won a Gold Glove that season before adding a second in 2003. He had the unenviable task of taking over in center field after Ken Griffey Jr. was traded to Cincinnati, but quickly made his own mark. In his first week with the Mariners, Cameron made a fence-climbing leap to rob Derek Jeter of a home run and showed he was just as capable in the outfield as his predecessor.
Later in his Seattle career, Cameron hit four homers in one game and was perhaps most remembered for circling the field with an American flag after the Mariners clinched the AL West title in 2001 in the days following the attacks of Sept. 11.
Cameron played 610 games and hit .256 with 87 homers and 344 RBIs with the Mariners. His best season was also Seattle’s best season in 2001 when the Mariners won 116 regular-season games and Cameron hit .267 with 25 homers and 110 RBIs.griffeys 2012
“We were winners. We won a lot of games here. Came up short as far as getting to the ultimate prize,” Cameron said. “But I couldn’t be more proud of the thing I was able to do here, so that’s why I feel like it should end here.”
Reds’ Votto agrees to 12-year, $251.5 million deal | Baseball
Joey Votto agreed to a $251.5 million, 12-year deal with the Cincinnati Reds that is the longest guaranteed contract in major-league history.
The agreement adds $225 million over 10 years to his previous contract. The deal includes a club option for 2024, when the 2010 National League MVP turns 41.air griffey max 1
After watching NL Central rivals St. Louis and Milwaukee lose their first basemen to bigger markets, the Reds secured Votto with a package that easily eclipsed Ken Griffey Jr.’s $116.5 million, nine-year deal from 2000 as the largest in franchise history. In the majors, it trails only Alex Rodriguez’s $275 million and $252 million deals, both over 10 years.
“Is it risky?” said owner Bob Castellini. “No doubt. That’s the environment we live in, especially as a small market. We feel Joe will be a cornerstone.”nike air griffey max 1
Said Votto, 28: “Maybe I could have found that elsewhere. Maybe not. But I like what I’ve got here.”
Marlins Park a hit nike air griffey fury max 2012
MIAMI — Commissioner Bud Selig offered a one-word review of the Miami Marlins’ new ballpark. “All you can say is,’Wow,’ ” Selig said.
Muhammad Ali had the same reaction.griffey max fury 2012
Selig’s critique came 90 minutes before the first pitch of the first game Wednesday in the Marlins’ season opener against the World Series champion St. Louis Cardinals, who won 4-1.
The ballpark’s retractable roof, which is expected to be closed for all but about 10 games, was opened 30 minutes before the start. When the Marlins were introduced, each starter was accompanied by a Latin showgirl.griffeys for kids
The surprise guest delivering the first pitch: Ali. He emerged from behind the center-field gate in a cart alongside team owner Jeffrey Loria.griffeys 2012
? Left-hander John Lannan asked the Washington Nationals for a trade after they demoted him to Class AAA Syracuse, and he declared in an email sent to reporters: “I believe that I belong in a big-league rotation.”
? Left-hander Jonathon Niese agreed to a $25.5 million, five-year contract with the New York Mets.nike air griffey max ii
? The Cleveland Indians finalized a three-year contract with shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera. He’ll make $4.55 million in 2012, $6.5 million in 2013 and $10 million in 2014. Also, the Indians placed oft-injured center fielder Grady Sizemore from Everett on the 60-day disabled list.air griffey max 2
? Reliever Yoshinori Tateyama will begin the season on the Texas Rangers’ disabled list, and outfielder Julio Borbon is headed for the minor leagues.
Los Angeles Dodgers, Boston Red Sox combine to win 6 Gold Gloves | Baseball
Clayton Kershaw, Matt Kemp and Andre Ethier became the first trio of Los Angeles Dodgers to win National League Gold Gloves in the same year, while Adrian Gonzalez, Dustin Pedroia and Jacoby Ellsbury became the first three Boston Red Sox in 32 seasons to win the AL honor together.
Kershaw became a first-time winner at pitcher when the awards were announced Tuesday. Ethier earned his first Gold Glove in the outfield and outfielder Kemp won the NL honor he also received in 2009.women ken griffey shoes
First baseman Gonzalez earned his first AL Gold Glove to go along with two he won in the NL while with San Diego, Pedroia won at second base for the first time since 2008 and center fielder Ellsbury picked up his first Gold Glove. The previous three Red Sox to win in the same year were shortstop Rick Burleson along with outfielders Dwight Evans and Fred Lynn in 1979.
For the first time since 1986, the Mariners lacked a Gold Glove winner. Ichiro’s streak ended at 10; he shares the AL record for Gold Gloves won by an outfielder with ex-Mariner Ken Griffey Jr. and Al Kaline.women griffey shoes
Chicago White Sox pitcher Mark Buehrle, who won for the third year in a row, was the lone AL honoree who also earned a Gold Glove last year.griffeys for women
Other AL Gold Gloves went to catcher Matt Wieters and right fielder Nick Markakis of Baltimore, shortstop Erick Aybar of the Los Angeles Angels, ex-Mariners third baseman Adrian Beltre of Texas and left fielder Alex Gordon of Kansas City.cheap griffey shoes
Non-Dodgers to win NL Gold Gloves were St. Lous catcher Yadier Molina, Cincinnati first baseman Joey Votto and second baseman Brandon Phillips, Colorado shortstop Troy Tulowitzki, Philadelphia third baseman Placido Polanco and Arizona left fielder Gerardo Parra.
Managers and coaches do the voting.cheap ken griffey shoes
McCourt to sell Dodgers
LOS ANGELES — Frank McCourt has agreed to sell the Los Angeles Dodgers, surrendering the team he fought to retain for two years and in two courts.
McCourt and Major League Baseball have agreed to seek approval from U.S. Bankruptcy Court for an auction of the Dodgers.griffeys sneakers
? Former Mariners infielder Willie Bloomquist, 33, has declined his end of a $1.1 million mutual option for 2012 with the Arizona Diamondbacks.ken griffey sneakers
? Brian Cashman, New York Yankees general manager, signed a three-year, $9 million contract.
The Verizon iPhone hype: Oh, where do we begin
The news release, from Verizon Wireless, was marked urgent.
“iPhone 4. Verizon. It begins.”king griffeys 2012
Hate to break it to the phone company, but honestly, the “It begins” line really should be saved for actual, monumental events. Like wars. Periods of drought or famine. Breaking of ground on a viaduct replacement. Free chowder at Ivar’s. Or Shark Week on the Discovery Channel.
Otherwise, you risk looking especially lame when, as in this case, the decided lack of enthusiasm for said overpriced product at Verizon stores signals that, even before “it” began, something unexpected might have occurred.king griffeys
More unsettling hype:
You Hate It When This Happens: Arnold Schwarzenegger’s announcement of his triumphant returning to acting was tempered by the sobering realization that there’s only one role for a sad, old, sexist former steroid abuser who has left an entire state in ruins. And he’s already played it.kids ken griffey shoes
Welcome To Jacques Cousteau Realty: About a third of Seattle metro-area residents with home mortgages now owe more than their homes are worth, http://www.griffeys2012forcheap.com estimates. Everyone else is living with their parents.kids griffey shoes
Ding Dong: Egyptian dictator Hosni Mubarak finally stepped down. Sources said it was the incessant breathless coverage of that Egypt-fleeing grandma on Seattle-area TV stations (She’s lost at the Cairo airport! She’s found at the Cairo airport! She’s lifted off! She’s landed in New York! She’s landed in Seattle! She’s at baggage claim! She can’t get a cab! She’s on Shuttle Express! She’s at her doorstep! She’s on her couch! She’s eating Bran Chex! … ) that finally pushed him over the edge.
The Week’s Poetic Justice Award: More than 100 pages of interview transcripts, photographs and other documents related to sexual-assault claims against WikiLeaks head Julian Assange have been leaked online.griffey shoes
Still Huffing, No Puffing: President Obama, D-Marlboro Country, quit smoking almost a year ago, first lady Michelle Obama said. He’s using replacement therapy: Every time he’s tempted to light one up, he caves in to a Republican demand instead.king griffey shoes
Meanwhile, In Gotham City: Donald Trump is considering throwing the strange animal that rides atop his head into the ring for the U.S. presidency in 2012.griffey shoes 2012
The Captain Has Turned On The d-CON Light: An Alaska Airlines flight from Sea-Tac was delayed when a rat was found prancing around inside the cabin. Seems like a lot of fuss, especially when Southwest is running that First-Rat-Flies-Free promotion.
Speaking Of Which: Anyone willing to bet that Alaska plane made a recent stop in Newark?ken griffey shoes
Leading By Example: Rumor is that Ken Griffey Jr. might return to the Mariners in a “consulting” role. He could bring a badly needed dose of entitlement to the clubhouse.cheap griffeys
And Finally: It says something about America; we’re just not sure what. The “most-shared” story list on Google News, Friday afternoon: 1) Egypt Unrest. 2) Egypt Unrest. 3) Listen to Lady Gaga’s New Single, “Born This Way,” HERE!!! 4) Mubarak Steps Down. 5) Mubarak Refuses To Step Down. 6) Egypt Protests. 7) Beer Lovers More Likely to Have Sex on First Date.ken griffey jr shoes
Ron Judd’s column appears each Sunday. He also writes Restless Native columns. Reach him at griffeys2012forcheap.com
NBA | Charles Barkley arrested on DUI charges
Charles Barkley was arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol early Wednesday.
An officer with a task force that targets drunken driving saw the former NBA star run a stop sign about 1:30 a.m., Gilbert police Lt. Eric Shuhandler said. Barkley was in Scottsdale’s Old Town area, a trendy spot in the Phoenix area.
“I am disappointed that I put myself in that situation,” Barkley said in a statement to The Associated Press. “The Scottsdale police were fantastic. I will not comment any further as it is a legal matter.”Air Max2 CB 94
The 45-year-old Barkley, now an NBA television commentator, failed field sobriety tests after the officer smelled alcohol on him, and he was arrested. Barkley declined to submit to a breath test but was given a blood test. The results weren’t immediately available.
Barkley was cited and released. His car was impounded and he left in a cab, Shuhandler said. Police described Barkley as cooperative, adding it is customary to release people after an arrest on suspicion of DUI.
“There was nothing unusual about how he was taken into custody,” Shuhandler said. “He was treated exactly like we treat anybody else.”Nike Air Max2 CB 94
Thunder wins No. 4
OKLAHOMA CITY — Scott Brooks figured his Oklahoma City Thunder team had been in enough close games in the fourth quarter to eventually win one. The team’s time came Wednesday night.
The Thunder pulled away in the third quarter and held on for a 107-100 victory over Golden State. It was only the fourth win of the season for Oklahoma City, which snapped a five-game losing streak.
“We’ve had a lot of fourth-quarter games. When you’re put in that situation constantly, you get better,” the interim coach said. “You find a rhythm. You find a little bit of anger inside your soul and say you’re going to keep fighting, we’re going to break through. And we’ve done that.”
Jeff Green scored 18 of his 26 points in the second half. Oklahoma City turned 20 Golden State turnovers into 24 points, many coming off steals.Charles Barkley shoes
“It’s obviously a big win for all of us, fans included,” Scott said. “They’re sticking with us, which is incredible. I’ve been around 17, 18 years in the league and you don’t see that. Players feel good about that and we all appreciate that.”
? Orlando guard Mickael Pietrus will be out indefinitely after breaking his right wrist on a dunk against Detroit on Monday.Nike Air Trainer Max 2 94
One of the Magic’s main three-point threats, Pietrus is averaging 11.7 points. But he has had trouble staying healthy after the Magic signed him away from Golden State in the offseason. Pietrus was appearing in his fifth straight game on Monday after missing 10 with a torn ligament in his right thumb.
? Forward Jermaine O’Neal (knee) and guard Jason Kapono (quadriceps) missed Toronto’s game against Denver.Air Trainer Max 2 94
? Washington forward Caron Butler had an MRI that revealed no serious damage to his injured left ankle. The MRI confirmed the initial diagnosis of a sprain, and he will continue to be listed as day-to-day.
Butler hurt the ankle during the loss to Cleveland on Christmas Day. He has since missed three games.
? Longtime NBA assistant Ron Adams has been hired to complete Brooks’ staff in Oklahoma City.
Mercer Island teen opts for charity at his bar mitzvah
Earlier this year, Rebecca Fox-Dewhurst and her son, Ben Dewhurst, were perusing invitations for his coming bar mitzvah when Ben noticed one in particular. On the front were the image of a globe and a quote from the Talmud: “Whoever saves a single life,” it read, “is as if one saves the entire world.”
Before long, Ben — a 13-year-old, soccer-playing Kanye West fan — found himself immersed in the life of a young woman 60 years before his time, a non-Jew whose family in Ukraine had helped rescue a young Jewish girl during the Holocaust.Nike Air Yeezy 2
Now, with his celebration today, Ben not only will acknowledge his transition into adulthood but the actions of those who, in one of history’s darkest periods, helped Jews survive persecution.
The invitation that broadened Ben’s purpose touted the Jewish Foundation for the Righteous (JFR), a 22-year-old New York-based agency offering financial support to non-Jews who risked their lives to save Jews during World War II.Air Yeezy 2
Through its bar/bat mitzvah program, the JFR encourages boys and girls to incorporate the Jewish commitments to tzedakah, or charity, and hakarat hatov, the seeking out and recognition of goodness, into their experience. Children choose to pair with one of the 100 or so rescuers profiled on the JFR Web site, typically honoring that rescuer’s deeds during their celebrations.
Ultimately, they contribute to the foundation, which suggests a donation of $5 per invitation mailed. In Ben’s case, that would be about $500. “Ben just felt that this invitation did what he wanted to do with his bar mitzvah,” Fox-Dewhurst said. “He said, ‘That is so incredibly cool, Mom.’ “Air Yeezy
The JFR each month sends money to nearly 1,200 verified rescuers in 26 countries. The greatest numbers are in Poland, Ukraine, Belarus and Hungary; 17 are in the U.S. Most are Catholic, some Muslim, and their stories are verified by Jerusalem’s Yad Vashem, a 55-year-old organization that documents the history of Jews during the Holocaust and those who helped save them.
Ben, a seventh-grader at Mercer Island’s Islander Middle School, scrolled through the dozens of JFR’s rescuer anecdotes and an hour later came to his parents with one that had stuck out to him — the story of Emilia Maksimova, a Ukrainian.Air Yeezy shoes
“She helped a kid about my age,” he said. “She and her family took her home. They even moved and went to a lot of trouble to help.”Air Yeezys sneakers
Maksimova’s parents found Nusia, a 10-year-old Jewish girl abandoned on the street. The family kept her in hiding, sometimes under the floorboards of their home, until the war ended. At age 13, Nusia was reunited with her parents. Now living in Israel, she still corresponds with Maksimova, who is in her 90s and has since relocated to Russia.
Like Maksimova, many surviving rescuers are now aged and struggling, perhaps coping with the aftermath of communism’s fall in Eastern Europe.Air Yeezy glow in the dark
“The elderly are not running around with fur coats and driving Mercedeses,” said JFR Executive Director Stanlee Stahl. “The idea is to provide additional funds so they can live out the remainder of their years in dignity.”Nike Air Yeezy For Women
“After learning the stories, I realized not enough people know about them,” said Rachel Siegel, a Dallas girl who celebrated her bat mitzvah in September 2007 and has earned more than $12,000 for the organization through sales of a book she wrote about Holocaust rescuers, “Stories of Moral Courage.”
Rescuers apply their money toward expenses such as food, heat and medication. Alternately, they might put out a big holiday feast for their grandchildren, or save their money in order to replace an outhouse with a new bathroom.Cheap Air Yeezy
While the notion of tzedakah is a responsibility, Stahl said, it nonetheless takes “a special kind of kid” to opt for a charity-oriented celebration. “That says to me that the child and the family have put the bar mitzvah into the right perspective,” she said.kanye west shoes
That’s what drew Susan Hoerger, of Chapel Hill, N.C., to the organization, when her son Jacob celebrated his bar mitzvah in 2005. “The greatest charity you can do is not only to save people you don’t know, but people who aren’t even your people,” she said. “It’s the height of righteousness.”
More than 900 youngsters have participated in the program. The matches with rescuers are strictly symbolic; donations don’t go directly to those individuals but into a pool of funds that benefit all rescuers.air yeezy shoes glow in the dark
“I think it’s important that you teach young people that you need to give back, that there’s something bigger than themselves,” Stahl said.Air Yeezy kanye west shoes
For 90 minutes every Thursday, Ben has been studying for his big day at Temple B’nai Torah, reading out of the Torah in Hebrew. One night, he looks over the script, fidgeting in his polo shirt and tennis shoes, anticipating the day when he’ll be draped with a tallit, or prayer shawl, and sing a hymn for the congregation.
Ben is earning his donation by doing odd jobs for his parents — six extra hours of work a week, including some recycling and yard duty and organizing some of his dad’s old files.Nike Air Yeezy Shoes
“A lot of things he’d like to do, like video gaming, have just disappeared from his life right now,” said Ben’s father, Tim Dewhurst.air yeezy shoes for sale
“[Ben] has kept up with it, despite his overloaded schedule,” Fox-Dewhurst said. Sure, sometimes he needs to be reminded; he’s a kid after all. Nonetheless, he’s going to have a party, and most of the attendees will be kids his age. The setting, as is Ben’s style, will be a modest community-center one.
“Ben’s only real request is that he has a chocolate fountain there,” Fox-Dewhurst said.cheap air yeezy shoes
What has Ben learned from his involvement? “That you should help people through their hard times,” he said. That even under the most trying of circumstances, he said, it’s possible to find goodness in people.
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