Thursday, June 14, 2012

You can't escape it. Not anywhere.


As anyone who is raising teenage sons would know, you have to find things of common interest in order to try and persuade them that you weren’t born on another planet. (I was however born in another country which may as well be the same thing as far as they are concerned).
My boys, despite claiming that they are 100% culturally Israeli, nevertheless are fanatic supporters of Arsenal (pronounced “Arsnol”) Football Club, following the game results you could say, almost religiously. My eldest son even submitted his English Bagrut project on the subject of the English FA, dedicating a whole page to his beloved Arsenal and their historic rivalry with the other “Jewish” football team up the road, Tottenham (pronounced “Totnum”) Hotspurs, better known by their nickname, “Spurs”.
In order to keep up to date and have some kind of opinion on the latest Arsenal related matter whenever my sons are home from yeshiva, I am a regular reader of Arseblog, one of the most popular Arsenal FC blogs.
It amuses me that just as a religious Jew might write a particular Avoda Zara (idol worship) by missing out some letters and replacing them with asterisks, so Arseblog refers to their arch rivals at Tottenham as “Sp*rs”. Anyone thinking of going to the site should be warned that it contains the usual football fan related swearwords.
I found this blog rather refreshing and a change from my usual Internet haunts and enjoyed a bit of escapism, following the insignificant discussions over which player was best and how much money the manager ought to spend to keep Van Persie.

From left to right: Benayoun, Walcott and Van Persie

Only once in the past have I made a contribution by adding to a discussion about one of Israel’s best players who was on loan to Arsenal for the season, Yossi Benayoun. They were wondering about the level of his English. In fact, Yossi probably has a better grasp of the language than many contributors to the blog. One guy said matter-of-factly that his mother tongue was of course Yiddish. Obviously I could not resist putting them straight and pointing out that Benayoun comes from a Sefardi family and was hardly likely to know more than a few words in Yiddish. I explained to them that his mother tongue was in fact Hebrew which is the national language of Israel. They were most amused!
Then, last week, I was forced to submit another post.  My escapism fantasy world was shattered as I read an article where the author commented that the subject he was writing about was similar to the fact that the Palestinian and Israeli sides were just as bad as each other. I would have let his comment go had it not been for posters who taking their cue from the article, waded in with Anti-Israel comments. One of them I could not ignore:

To which I replied (yes I called myself Shlomo):

It just goes to show. You can’t escape it can you.

It's been two days since I posted this comment. So far, no one has replied. Let's hope it stays that way.

1 comment:

Reb Mordechai said...

New blog post
You can't escape it. Not anywhere.