Uruguayan president could teach lesson

Because the news was full of it, and it was too hot to do much on Sunday anyway, I watched most of the world soccer match.

Because the news was full of it, and it was too hot to do much on Sunday anyway, I watched most of the world soccer match.

My knowledge of soccer is limited to watching grandchildren play when they were little.

Their games seemed to be players milling around the middle of the field trying to get close enough to the ball to kick it.

I don’t know what the rules are, so Sunday’s game looked the same to me except for all the head bumps.

Question: Where does soccer rate in terms of concussions?

Nothing to do with soccer, except that one of Uruguay’s team members bit another player bringing negative publicity to the country the Economist named Country of the Year in 2013. That wee land has a particularly interesting head of state.

President José Mujica has been a florist, a guerrilla, and a political prisoner (nine years in solitary confinement).

Known as the world’s poorest president, he lives in a tiny run-down house instead of the presidential mansion and he donates most of his presidential stipend to charity. His philosophy?

“A  president is a high-level official who is elected to carry out a function. He is not a king, not a god. He is not the witch doctor of a tribe who knows everything. He is a civil servant. I think the ideal way of living is to live like the vast majority of people whom we attempt to serve and represent.”

I wonder if any of our prime ministers, premiers, and mayors have ever seen themselves as public servants.


Serendipity;  a pleasant surprise.

Turned  on CBC one day last week to hear Ian Tyson playing some of his favourite songs. One was Wilf Carter singing The Blue Canadian Rockies.  Some people think Carter and his yodelling were hokey, but he’s a favourite of mine too.

Diana French is a freelance columnist for the Tribune. She is a former Tribune editor, retired teacher, historian, and book author.