Month: January 2020

The team’s the thing

first_imgIn this country, save for a few sports, incubating a team over long stretches of time is hard to realize unless commitment and a fair amount of money is around.There’s nothing wrong about players keeping their skills sharp in our many leagues. Excellent players around the world spend time with their home clubs but do come together when it’s time to serve the national cause. The issue that challenges team unity and performance is the system the coach will instill.  First, the coach will get players who will support a vision to match up against the level of competition. In this process, some players will have more playing time.  Some will perform supporting roles like coming off the bench or playing hard in training to keep the starting six sharp.In a galaxy of stars, it’s a juggling challenge to keep everybody happy while staying true to the team vision.  Trust and faith are vital and it’s critical to get coachable players who will get others to support the cause.ADVERTISEMENT MOST READ Motorcycle taxis ‘illegal’ starting next week — LTFRB board member Nothing would please the Pinoy volleyball crowd more than a sterling performance in the SEA Games.  And seeing their favorites play for them must be accomplished with the team’s goals at heart. Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Montalbo, Potts get scribes’ nod Filipinos turn Taal Volcano ash, plastic trash into bricks PLAY LIST 01:40Filipinos turn Taal Volcano ash, plastic trash into bricks01:32Taal Volcano watch: Island fissures steaming, lake water receding02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite Luis Manzano jokes about Mikee Morada’s proposal to Alex Gonzaga: ‘Baka nagtali lang ng sintas’ Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Marcos monument beside Aquino’s stirs Tarlac town Anne Curtis talks about renewing faith in God amid the world’s ‘noise and clutter’ View comments Gamboa officially assumes post as new PNP chief Appointed coach Francis Vicente sent a strong message to all interested players that no preferential treatment would be given to anyone, even for most likely shoo-in Alyssa Valdez. Valdez is going to be spending some time with a club team in Thailand but will make herself available for the tryouts.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSEnd of his agony? SC rules in favor of Espinosa, orders promoter heirs to pay boxing legendSPORTSBreak new groundSPORTSMcGregor blasts Cerrone in 40 seconds in UFC returnGreat individual skill is definitely indispensable but if players are not willing to conform to team discipline and a playing system then all that talent will amount to nothing.  It’s like having popular actors in an all-star film without a unifying direction or narrative.That’s because the competition is already fine-tuning their team play while we’re still forming our squad.  That’s the natural consequence of having an abundant amount of league play.  LATEST STORIES Palace: Crisis over ABS-CBN franchise unlikely Ben&Ben, IV of Spades, SB19 win big at 5th Wish Music Awards Tristan Tamayo/INQUIRER.netWhy all the buzz about the Philippine women’s volleyball team to the Southeast Games in Malaysia this August?It’s simply because the game is enjoying immense popularity.  Social media is alive with tweets and posts about the composition of the team. And yet, as any coach or pundit who has followed the game in the region will tell you, it’s about forming a team and getting it ready to play as one unit.ADVERTISEMENT Bulacan inmates, jail guards raise donations for Taal victims DILG to lock shops in Tagaytay City, other areas near Taallast_img read more

first_imgDozens wounded as Iraqi protesters up pressure on government Geoffrey Kirui won the 121st Boston Marathon on Monday, pulling away from three-time U.S. Olympian Galen Rupp with two miles to go to give Kenya its first men’s victory in five years. Edna Kiplagat won the women’s race to complete the Kenyan sweep.They were followed closely by Americans who grabbed two of the top four women’s spots and six of the top ten for men — the first time that’s happened since the race went professional in 1986.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSEnd of his agony? SC rules in favor of Espinosa, orders promoter heirs to pay boxing legendSPORTSBreak new groundSPORTSMcGregor blasts Cerrone in 40 seconds in UFC return“It’s so exciting to see Americans being competitive here,” said Rupp, the Olympic bronze medalist who was making his Boston debut. “It’s a real exciting time. And it’s awesome to see American distance running on the upswing and being competitive in these races.”Kirui finished in 2 hours, 9 minutes, 37 seconds to claim a silver trophy, a guilded olive wreath from Marathon, Greece, and the $150,000 first prize. Rupp was 21 seconds back, and Japan’s Suguru Osako 30 seconds behind him. LATEST STORIES MOST READ Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Marcos monument beside Aquino’s stirs Tarlac town View comments SpaceX launches, destroys rocket in astronaut escape test The winners’ times on the point-to-point Boston course are considered a world best and not a world record because of the possibility of a supportive tailwind like the one on Monday.“The wind is so important,” Hug said. “The roads were good. Everything was fantastic today.”Earlier Monday, city officials announced plans for memorials to mark the sites where two bombs exploded during the 2013 race.Also in the field was Boston Police Commissioner William Evans, who ran for the 18th time in 2013 but has skipped the races since the bombings so he could be available in case of another emergency. Evans, who completed his 52nd marathon overall, said he wanted to show that Boston is back to normal.“If I can come back,” he said, “everyone can.”Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Kenya had won either the men’s or women’s race every year since 1991 before being shut out in 2014 and again last year. In fact, Kenya had taken both titles six times since 2000, so dominating the top 10 that Boylston Street began to look like a Great Rift Valley training run.But Ethiopia has surpassed its East African neighbors on Patriots’ Day the past four years, earning its first sweep in 2016. Then, in December, Kenyan Rita Jeptoo was stripped of her 2014 title for failing a drug test and it was handed instead to Ethiopia’s Buzunesh Deba.For Kirui, even when he was running shorter distances, he had his eye on Boston.“In my mind, I was sure that one day I would win this race,” said Kirui, 25, who was running just his third marathon. “To come here to Boston, I knew I was going to face my colleagues who have run many times here. … I knew I would challenge some of the champions who have been competing here.”The American drought reached more than three decades from the time Greg Meyer won in 1983 until Meb Keflezighi ran down Boylston Street to raucous chants of “U-S-A!” in 2014, the year after the finish line bombings killed three people and wounded more than 260 others. (No U.S. woman has won since 1985.)Keflezighi, 41, said he plans to enter the New York Marathon, which he won in 2009, one last time in the fall before retiring. In his last competitive Boston run, he finished 13th in 2:17:00 despite pain in his quad muscles.“The crowd got me through the finish line,” he said.Also running on Monday was Ben Beach, who completed the race for an unprecedented 50th time in a row. And Kathrine Switzer, wearing the same bib number — 261 — that she wore when she entered the all-male race 50 years ago, using only her initials, K.V.The warm temperatures that hit 79 degrees at the 20-kilometer mark in Natick slowed the runners, but the strong tailwind was a boost — especially in the wheelchair races.Marcel Hug won Boston for the third time, outpushing 10-time champion Ernst Van Dyk down Boylston Street and finishing in 1:18:04 to beat the course record and world best by 21 seconds. Fellow Swiss Manuela Schar shattered the women’s mark by more than five minutes, winning in 1:28:17. Canadian military mobilized to help Newfoundland dig outcenter_img Palace: Crisis over ABC-CBN franchise unlikely More Taal volcanic quakes recorded despite weaker eruptions Filipinos turn Taal Volcano ash, plastic trash into bricks PLAY LIST 01:40Filipinos turn Taal Volcano ash, plastic trash into bricks01:32Taal Volcano watch: Island fissures steaming, lake water receding02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite Rounding out the top 10 were runners from California, Arizona, Colorado, Oregon and Utah.“American distance running is looking good today,” said sixth-place finisher Abdi Abdirahman, a Somali immigrant and Tucson resident who is a four-time Olympian. “We have the podium for both men and women, so the future is great.”Kiplagat finished in 2:21:52 to win her Boston debut, adding the victory to two world championships and wins in London, New York and Los Angeles. She pulled ahead of Rose Chelimo of Bahrain in the Newton hills to win by 59 seconds.American Jordan Hasay, making her first run at the 26.2-mile distance, was third and Desi Linden was fourth — the first time since 1991 that two U.S. women have finished in the top four.“It keeps happening. We keep getting closer. We’re putting more numbers in there and it’s just a matter of time,” said Linden, the 2011 runner-up by 2 seconds. “When Americans break the tape, it’s going to be a big deal here.”ADVERTISEMENT NBA: Leonard stars anew as Spurs take 2-0 lead vs Grizzlies On the edge of America, census begins in a tiny Alaska town Presidency bid needs ‘deep reflection’ – Sara Duterte Edna Kiplagat, left and Geoffrey Kirui, both of Kenya, hold a trophy together after their victories in the 121st Boston Marathon on Monday, April 17, 2017, in Boston. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)BOSTON — The Kenyans are back in Boston after a relative lull that saw them shut out in the world’s most prestigious marathon twice in the past three years.More surprisingly, so are the Americans.ADVERTISEMENT Panelo: Duterte only wants to emulate strong political will of Marcoslast_img read more

first_imgOrganiser Clive ‘Busy’ Campbell is imploring football fans and hardworking Jamaicans to relax and enjoy this year’s Bring Back the Love after-Labour Day match, set for the Anthony Spaulding Sports Complex tomorrow.The annual event, which began at the National Stadium with former West Indies batting great Brian Lara, will celebrate 21 years.Campbell said the match will have what he describes as a star-studded lineup of past national players, entertainers and friends of football.”Even players are donating to the worthy cause this year, so we want the public to come out and bring back the love after they have finished labouring for their communities.”He recalled that the event began when former Prime Minister P.J. Patterson “asked us to play at the National Stadium for the people”.While Campbell’s event began free of cost, its first beneficiary was the Trinitarian Basic School in Olympic Gardens.This year, the proceeds will assist Desmond ‘Gorilla’ Davey and select basic schools, while head of the Peace Management Initiative Horace Levy will be honoured on the day.EVENT COSTThe event will begin at 5 p.m. and the cost is $400 for adults, while children under 12 will enter free.”We want to finish before night, as light will not be afforded, so we ask the public to come out early and enjoy the best entertainment.”Those entertainers confirmed are; I-Octane, Agent Sasco and Chris Martin. Former Reggae Boyz Ian ‘Pepe’ Goodison, Walter ‘Blacka’ Boyd, Ricardo ‘Bibi’ Gardener, and Gregory Messam will also feature.Barbican FC captain Alicia James is also expected to turn out.Others confirmed are Denton Sheddon, Kevin ‘Pele’ Wilson, Cornel Chin-Sue, Moya Pettigrew, Stephen Miller, Ian McNaughton, Kasai Hinds, David Shirley, Robert ‘Bunny’ Scott, Marvin Chin and Ian Wilkinson.The teams will be managed by Andrew Price and Frederick Hemmings, while former FIFA referee Peter Prendergast will be the man in the middle.last_img read more

Caymanas tips


first_img WEST INDIES 1st innings (overnight 246 for six) +S. Dowrich not out 125 D. Bishoo c R Silva b Lakmal 40 K. Roach c Chandimal b Kumara 39 M. Cummins not out 0 Extras (b14, lb20, w2, nb4) 40 Total (8 wkts decl., 154 overs) 414 Did not bat: S Gabriel. Fall of wickets: 1-4, 2-40, 3-80, 4-134, 5-147, 6-237, 7-339, 8-414. Bowling: Lakmal 29-11-55-2, Gamage 26-6-67-0, D Perera 35-5-84-0, Kumara 31-4-95-4, Herath 32-9-67-1, Mendis 1-0-12-0. SRI LANKA 1st Innings K. Mendis c Holder b Gabriel 4 K. Perera c Chase b Roach 0 *D. Chandimal not out 3 A. Mathews c Chase b Holder 11 R. Silva not out 1 Extras (lb4, w7, nb1) 12 Total (3 wkts, 10 overs) 31 To bat: +N Dickwella, D Perera, R Herath, S Lakmal, K Gamage, L Kumara. Fall of wickets: 1-2, 2-16, 3-30. Bowling: Roach 3-2-2-1, Gabriel 4-0-17-1, Cummins 2-0-3-0, Holder 1-0-5-1. Position: Sri Lanka trail by 383 runs. Toss: West Indies. Umpires: Aleem Dar, Richard Kettleborough; TV – Ian Gould. Opening Partner His opening partner Kusal Mendis (4) fared little better, departing to a catch at third slip by captain Jason Holder after failing to negotiate a length delivery from speedster Shannon Gabriel in the fourth over. Controversy surrounded the fall of Sri Lanka’s third wicket, however. Angelo Mathews, dropped first ball by Holder off Gabriel, survived a pace barrage to make 11 before edging an outswinger from Holder to Chase at third slip. Replays showed Holder appearing to have overstepped but with none of the images conclusive, the dismissal was upheld by umpires. Captain Dinesh Chandimal battled 31 deliveries to be unbeaten on three at the close and was accompanied by Roshen Silva on one. Sri Lanka head into today’s day three trailing Sri Lanka by 383 runs. For all the drama created by the Windies pacers late on, it was the remarkable hundred by Dowrich which took the spotlight. Resuming the morning on 46, the right-hander hardly put a foot wrong as he reached three figures with the last ball before tea in an extended post-lunch session. All told, Dowrich faced 325 deliveries in seven hours and 37 minutes at the crease, striking 12 fours, in a knock marked by superb powers of concentration. More significantly, he put on a record 102 for the seventh wicket with overnight partner Devendra Bishoo who made 40, before adding a further 75 for the eighth wicket with Roach who scored 39. The two partnerships crushed Sri Lanka’s spirit and enabled West Indies to clinically build on their position of 246 for six at the start. SCOREBOARD PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad (CMC): West Indies rattled Sri Lanka with three quick wickets in a dramatic final hour to take firm control of the opening Test, after Shane Dowrich’s second Test hundred had earlier given them the advantage on a rain-hit second day of the contest at Queen’s Park Oval yesterday. Declaring their innings on 414 for eight, just under an hour before the rescheduled close with Dowrich left unbeaten on 125, West Indies wrecked the visitors’ top order to leave them against the ropes on 31 for three from the 10 overs possible. Kusal Perera perished off just the second legitimate delivery of the innings from seamer Kemar Roach, carving a wide, loose delivery to Roston Chase at point, to fall without scoring to the first ball he faced.last_img read more

first_imgGRAYDON ran a great race last Saturday, beaten by the handicaps, giving 12lb to the winner, MY SISTER, after getting involved in breakneck splits down the backstretch, and should relish the easier pace of this afternoon’s United Racehorse Trainers’ Association of Jamaica Trophy at nine furlongs and 25 yards. Taken off lasix by Philip Feanny for his previous race, GRAYDON scored a ridiculously easy win at eight and a half furlongs, mid-October, before returning with topweight, up in class, last Saturday. The United States-bred colt never got a breather with the big weight, used up in torrid splits as his rider, Robert Halledeen, along with Shane Ellis and Aaron Chatrie, astride OUTRAGEOUS TAJ and EL PROFESOR, respectively, decided neither would let the other get to the top of the lane first. NECROMANCER started the salvo opening splits of 23.1 after which GRAYDON, OUTRAGEOUS TAJ and EL PROFESOR went crazy on the lead in 33.4, 46.0 and 58.3 in the seven-furlong event. MY SISTER, who was held off the pace, started her move and ran on past GRAYDON in mid-track to win by a length and a half. Neither OUTRAGEOUS TAJ nor EL PROFESOR could answer the six-furlong split of 1:11.3 as both weakened out of contention, leaving GRAYDON to chase home MY SISTER. GRAYDON returns at the same level with the exact weight, 122lb, but the quality of the field, due to the longer distance, has gone south, leaving Feanny’s runner as the controlling speed against a suspect bunch of eight runners, six of whom are fillies, the top two being AZARIA and ANNA LISA, both void of pace. Sired by the now-retired Sweet Return, a top turf miler, who won the Grade One Hollywood Derby in 2003 and placed eighth in the Arlington Million the following year, it took GRAYDON took eight starts, six of them sprint events, before springing to life last month when taken off anti-bleeding medication lasix. Gary Subratie’s ANNA LISA will have her backers but her lack of speed makes her suspect in any race that the pace doesn’t come back to her in the stretch run. She boasts a victory over GRAYDON, at six and a half furlongs in August, beating him by three and three quarters lengths, sitting level at the scale. ANNA LISA is in receipt of 21lb from GRAYDON, which, strictly by handicapping rule of thumb, should give the American no chance against her. However, ANNA LISA’s August victory came before Feanny had tightened the screws. Note how GRAYDON had her two lengths behind at the exact handicaps last Saturday.last_img read more

first_imgWell known radio and television personality WR Reaz of Team MMR will today release his debut single, titled “Right Remedy”, on several radio stations across the country, including on Radio Guyana Inc. Apart from releasing the song in Guyana, the song will also be released in Trinidad and NY. Known for his versatility in several areas, the talented young man is elated to release his debut single, and thanks several persons who encouraged him to pursue his musical career. These include Terry G, Ravi B, Nishard M, and others.The song was written by Guyanese Musician Shatta Youth, and was produced by DP Records alongside Team MMR. The song was recorded in the studios of DP Records at Mc Doom, Greater Georgetown. “Right Remedy” is, more or less, a reality song and might be revealing the lifestyle of the versatile emcee.It tells the story of a guy who had lots of girlfriends but after a while thought of not having any, and remains free, single and disengaged. Now that he has no one, he feels it is time to mix and mingle, since he thinks he has the “right remedy”.This song has been in the making since July 2016, and would have started at the Shakti Strings Studio, but after some challenges, the project was taken to DP Studious in December. Now that the song will be finally released, WR Reaz is expected to make his debut performance in New York on April 15 and 22.Here in Guyana, he will perform that song for the first time on April 29 at a Chutney Show at the Lusignan Community Centre Ground. He is also in talks with Palm Court to perform it there as well.last_img read more


first_img…race baitingNow your Eyewitness is in a quandary. How the heck are we ever going to get out this messy trading of invectives on “race baiting” if the leader of half of the country can’t even speak of what he considers to be factually based racial discrimination? Is it that when it comes to matters caused by, or contingent on, race, we have to invoke Ludwig Wittgenstein’s aphorism, “Whereof one cannot speak, thereof one must be silent”?What’s going on? Are we living in such an upside-down, la-la land that we’ll pretend “race” isn’t the elephant in any room (or park) where Guyana’s politics is being discussed? It’s not as if our politicians are all vulgar Marxists who insist that “race is an epiphenomenon” and as such, is not worth discussing. Nowadays, you can’t turn on your TV or read any of the dailies and not have “race” jumping out at you.Now your Eyewitness isn’t completely oblivious to the reality that “race” hasn’t been exploited in some counties – such as the US, right at this moment – to stir up violence by one race against another. In places like Rwanda – the same dynamics operated with folks of different ethnicities and resulted in hundreds of thousands of people being slaughtered.But surely Jagdeo saying that his constituents – Indian Guyanese – are being discriminated against by the new Government can’t amount to “race baiting” when he, along with several other prominent leaders in his party, have been saying the same thing at various times in Guyana when specific incidents occurred.In January of this year, Prime Minister Moses Nagamootoo addressed an Alliance For Change audience in Neresa Place in Queens, NY and complained about “the Opposition resorting to protest, picket and petition” on “racial discrimination”. So right off the bat, we knew that Nagamootoo, whose office issued the recent denunciation of Jagdeo’s statement in New York, knows that Jagdeo and the People’s Progressive Party (PPP) have been invoking claims of racial discrimination against Indian Guyanese.But he then went on to lambast the PPP to the New York crowd, “So this claim of racial discrimination in Guyana or political discrimination in Guyana is not founded in fact, it is founded and rooted in racism!” Was he engaged in “race baiting” when he accused the PPP of engaging in “racism”?? Should he have been censured?But even if he honestly thought back in January the PPP was “race baiting” – he would know it didn’t lead to any racial incidents back in Guyana. So why does he repeat the charge once again? And we KNOW it’s him!This Eyewitness really thinks he “protesteth too much”! And maybe he IS indulging in “race baiting”!…SARU and SARATalk about putting the cart before the horse. Or this being Guyana, the cart before the donkey. A year after the State Assets Recovery Unit (SARU)was launched with great fanfare and its head Clive Thomas making all sorts of threats against members of the previous Administration, the legislation that actually proposes to form such a body has NOW been drafted. They say!! In which other country would you find such ass backwardness, so to speak?It’ll be called an “Agency” and not a “Unit” so SARU will become SARA. Wow!! But apart from the change in nomenclature, we can understand why the “legal” authority was so long in the making. Firstly, Thomas will now become a bounty hunter: “25 per cent of the value of recovered property will be credited, with the remaining 75 per cent credited to the Consolidated Fund.”With Thomas being able to use his 25 per cent bounty as he sees fit, his motto might very well be: “Go ahead: make my day!”…the bounty hunterThe legislation also says Thomas will be able to issue “search and seizure warrants which enables an authorised person to enter and search the premises specified in the application for the warrant, and seize and retain any material found there.”No need to call in SOCU, eh?last_img read more

Writing history

first_imgWith the Commemoration of the 100th Anniversary of the Arrival of Indians as Indentureds coming up next March, I’ve been re-looking at some of what I had written about history in general and our one-sided history in particular. We can start with my agreeing with Hayden White that all historical writings are narratives with one of four types of emplotment – romance, satire, comedy, and tragedy.Then there’s the question, “What are the uses of history?” I concluded it all has to do with the present in which we are forced to make choices every second of every day. And every choice ultimately is a moral choice. We have to begin from our Foucauldian “history of the present”, in which we interrogate intensely our “problem space” – the threats and opportunities that confront us at a sociohistorical conjuncture – that defined the context of an issue in the past.The concept of “problem space” is from the historical theorist Reinhart Koselleck. Histories, he insists, are always written within a particular “space of experience” – the ways that the past is remembered in the present and a “horizon of expectation” – the anticipation of the non-yet-known future beyond the horizon.In the tradition of RG Collingwood’s “Q&A” methodology, we have to engage in a rigorous practice of inquiry that demands us to formulate and present questions, assemble, evaluate, analyze, and interpret evidence, and to articulate and defend an argument based upon the relationship between the questions posed and the evidence gathered. In a word, we problematise the past.The questions, we have to remind ourselves constantly, are from our own present and framed within our horizon of expectations. The question for us is, what choices are we trying to make TODAY (out of the cornucopia of infinite possibilities) in our present problem space and what are we trying to achieve? What traces of the past questions and answers linger in our present? And most importantly, how relevant are they in today’s problem space? It is not that some of the answers to questions posed in the past might be “wrong” but they just might be “irrelevant” in the present? It is only in this manner that exemplary history can help us deal with current problems rather than just beating up on old leaders or foes.What then should be our “horizon of expectation”? Criticism is always strategic. What is it we want as a consequence of our criticisms, narratives, actions and exhortations? What is the “Good”? While there will never be – for the simple reason that it just cannot be – a single horizon of ends for all of us, I am pretty sure that among the various possibly competing ends that of a more harmonious society would be there in common in all formulations. With the privilege of hindsight, we should connect the past with the present in a broader narrative that is healing rather than destructive. We cannot change the past but we can certainly change the future.Our horizon of expectation must generate strategies that speak to those normative ends rather than further dividing Guyana. So in the evaluation of our historical narratives, I would first of all ask whether the particular narrative or any narrative that seeks to connect our past to the present and envision a more positive future, fits the bill. As Nietzsche’s noted historical truth is effectively defined by fitness of purpose.Crucial to the formulation of a constructive historical narrative would be what Hayden White labelled the “content of the form” of the narrative – particularly its plot to link past, present and future. Hegel’s famous interpretation of Antigone as the paradigmatic Greek tragedy might be particularly apt to our situation. In this narrative both “sides” are morally right: the conflict is not between good and evil but between “goods” on which each is making exclusive claim. Isn’t this the situation that our mutually exclusive narratives of victimhood with its facile binary oppositions have delivered us into?Such an emplotment within a narrative, I am suggesting, should suggest compromise rather than a battle of one side overcoming. That would be a constructive narrative for our time, place and circumstances.last_img read more

Valentine’s Day

first_imgYesterday, Guyana and the rest of the world were lit afire by the flames of Valentine’s Day. As the embers of the holiday remain burning, let us examine how this day became designated the day of lovers, and explore a little bit of history.Valentine’s Day was originally based on a Roman holiday known as Lupercalia. For those of you studying Julius Caesar for CSEC, this name might ring a bell. It was a pagan holiday in which rites were done to increase fertility. However, as Christianity gained popularity, this tradition soon became outlawed, and the date, February 14, was designated as “St Valentine’s Day” by Pope Gelasius in the fifth century.However, the identity of Saint Valentine is not as straightforward as one would expect. There are three Saints recognised by the Catholic Church of the name Valentine, but it is widely believed that the day is the namesake of a priest from Roman times. In the legend, Roman Emperor Claudius II outlawed marriage, because he believed that single men would make better soldiers. Valentine, who thought this to be an injustice, secretly continued carrying out marriage ceremonies. When he was found out, he was sentenced to death. In other versions, Valentine is sentenced to jail for aiding Christian prisoners. Whilst his body was imprisoned, his heart was too, as he became enamoured with the daughter of his jailor. It is fabled that right before his death, he sent her a love letter, signed “from your Valentine”, becoming the first of many Valentine’s Day greetings.It is easy to see how the day has become one of a celebration of love, once we look at its history. But strangely enough, love did not become associated with the date until the Middle Ages. At that time, in France and England, it was thought that birds began their mating in mid-February, which just so happened to be coincidental with Valentine’s Day. This belief is perhaps why the day slowly became more adapted to suit “love birds”. And records of written Valentine’s begin to show up in the 1400s.With time, romantic gestures have become more and more extravagant, with greeting cards, chocolates, flowers and even jewellery being exchanged. Today, 220 million roses are grown on average for the big day, and perhaps even more surprisingly, about six million couples are likely to get engaged. It’s interesting to see how Valentine’s Day has evolved through the years; and maybe it will continue to evolve. Whatever happens, at least we know that the day actually comes from a place of deep meaning, and the holiday isn’t as superficial as it seems to some.last_img read more

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