A couple of short takes

Published Nov 22, 2017 at 4:00pm

Here are a couple of items we came across that we thought were of interest:

— Worst. Refs. Ever: Four of what must be the most inept refs in all of soccer were banned for life last week by the Malawi Soccer Association after being found guilty of taking bribes to fix a national cup match between lower league team Nchalo United and Chitipa United.

The kicker (so to speak) is that the team doing the bribing lost anyway and demanded its money back.

Underdog Nchalo knew it needed some help, so it paid the refs $20 (Malawi is a very poor country). When Nchalo lost on penalty kicks, it demanded its money back. One of the four refs had already spent his $5, so Nichalo complained to authorities.

Imagine the complaint: Hey, we tried to bribe these guys but now they won’t give us our money back.

The AP reports no sanctions have been announced against Nchalo, but there is a case pending. Possibly for being stupid enough to complain.

-- Saudi chauffeurs in mourning: At long last, women will be able to drive in Saudi Arabia next year. The kingdom was the only country in the world that banned women from driving. This step will skyrocket the kingdom into the 20th century, (even though the rest of us are now in the 21st century) in terms of women’s rights.

It’ll probably still be a long time until women are allowed to show their faces, wrists and ankles in public, but at least this is a start toward a reversal of the interpretation of Islam that helped inspire 15 Saudis among the 19 hijackers who launched the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.