Sportswire Apr 21 2010
BEN THERE, DONE THAT
Wild-eyed southern boy.

Word just came from the NFL commissioner’s office that two-time Super Bowl-winning quarterback Ben Rothlisberger has been suspended for six games next season for violating the league’s personal conduct policy. Rothlisberger was accused of sexual assault by a twenty year-old college student, who says Rothlisberger raped her in a nightclub bathroom. He faces no criminal charges, so the policy violation stems from his “poor judgment” in hanging around college bars trying to get young girls to hike his balls. Sigh. It’s a big, interesting world out there, filled with Eiffel Towers, Great Walls, Barrier Reefs, and Machu Picchus, yet guys like Rothlisberger spend their off-seasons playing Gears of War and shooting at deer. Don’t get us wrong—we understand that reaching an elite level of professional athletics eats up a tremendous amount of time and, as a consequence, an equal amount of self-awareness. But there’s unaware and then there’s really unaware. Just as Tiger Woods should have known that being the most famous figure in American sports means affairs will eventually come out, Rothlisberger, who is twenty-eight, should know that putting the make on co-eds is a bad idea. Sure, they look good, and they’re probably not interested in your money, because at that age they think they’re going to be millionaires too one day, but the level of behavior in that environment is a recipe for disaster. Example: one of our college friends once dragged a girl by her heels through a fresh pizza that was lying on the floor. He did it on purpose, when she refused to leave his room. When you aren’t famous, you might get away with something that fucked up and misogynistic. But if Rothlisberger had done it, he’d be in jail right now. That’s why he shouldn’t hang around college students—college isn’t reality. That world is hard to let go, and if you aren’t famous, you don’t have to. But when you’re a millionaire celebrity, let go you must. Big Ben didn’t, and now his team (one of our favorites) will go through three eighths of the upcoming season without him. 

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History Rewind
The headlines that mattered yesteryear.
August 23
1942—Battle of Stalingrad Begins
The Battle of Stalingrad, perhaps the most pivotal event of World War II, begins. It lasts for more than six months, spread across the brutal Russian winter, and ends with two million casualties. The Russian sacrifice reduces the powerful German army to a shell of its former self, and as a result Nazi defeat in the war becomes a simple matter of time.
1979—Alexander Gudonov Defects
Russian ballet dancer and actor Alexander Borisovich Godunov defects to the U.S. The event causes an international diplomatic crisis, but Gudonov manages to win asylum. He joins the famous American Ballet Theater, where he becomes a colleague of fellow-defector Mikhail Baryshnikov, and later earns roles in such Hollywood films as Witness and Die Hard.
August 22
1950—Althea Gibson Breaks the Color Barrier
Althea Gibson becomes the first African-American woman to compete on the World Tennis Tour, and the first to earn a Grand Slam title when she wins the French Open in 1956. Later she becomes the first African-American woman to compete in the Ladies Professional Golf Association.
1952—Devil's Island Closed
Devil's Island, the penal colony located off the coast of French Guiana, is permanently closed. The prison is later made world famous by Henri Charrière's bestselling novel Papillon, and the subsequent film starring Steve McQueen and Dustin Hoffman.
1962—De Gaulle Survives Assassination Attempt
Jean Bastien-Thiry, a French air weaponry engineer, attempts to assassinate French President Charles de Gaulle to prevent Algerian independence. Bastien-Thiry and others attack de Gaulle's armored limousine with machine guns, but after expending hundreds of rounds, they succeed only in puncturing two tires.
August 21
1911—Mona Lisa Disappears
Leonardo da Vinci's masterpiece, the Mona Lisa, aka La Gioconda, is stolen from the Louvre. After many wild theories and false leads, it turns out the painting was snatched by museum employee Vincenzo Peruggia.
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