3/15/2012

Suburban Soccer Moms

Matthews on left, Silverman on right

While Jessica Matthews (Harvard student age 23) and Julia Silverman (Harvard student age 22) founded Uncharted Play, a company that manufactures soccer balls (SOCCKET) that generate and store electricity during play for use later, Anna Gristine and Jaynie Baker, recently surrendered to authorities and were released on $100,000 bail for allegedly running a prostitution ring in Manhattan. 

And, while neither idea or invention is actually a new idea, it is very interesting to an outside observer, an individual who teaches Entrepreneurship classes to college students, how these two groups of females elected to spend their time and efforts to help others. 

Anna Gristine
History of Prostitution

In 18th Century BCE, the Code of Hammerabi has provisions in it to protect the rights of prostitutes.  In 6th Century BCE, Greece had state funded brothels.  In 590 AD, Spain banned brothels to bring the country in line with Christianity.  In 1161, England tries to regulate prostitution; whereas in 1358, Italy declares that prostitution is indispensible to the world.  However, in 1586, Pope Sixtus V declares the death penalty for prostitutes and in 1802 France establishes a bureau of morals banning prostitution as did India in 1956, but Japan forced prostitution as recently as 1932.  In 1971, the State of Nevada legalizes brothels but Sweden in 1999 declares prostitution to be violence against women.  In 2007, South Africa announces to the world that 25% of their sex trafficking are children and attempts to regulate, but fails.


Interestingly, soccer started in the Middle Ages in England when the head of an executed person was thrown into the streets and the spectators started kicking it around.  Of course, this is legend and historians have reports that the Aztecs used small, bouncing balls in a game that included both soccer and basketball commonly referred to as hoop kicking. 

Historians also have evidence that Chinese warriors used sewn-up leather balls that they kicked around a field with no rules, resulting often in the death of those competitors that stood in the way of a warrior moving the ball down the field in the direction that he wanted to go. 

In 1836, Charles Goodyear invented vulcanized rubber and the first vulcanized soccer ball was used in 1855.  In 2006, a new ball was introduced in Germany that no only was lighter but also had properties that kept it closer to the ground, making it more likely to hit the goal.

As we can see, both soccer and prostitution have both sparkling and romantic traditions; however, only one affords us the opportunity to spend some time in jail . . .  unless, we are caught gambling . . .  actually, both are a form of gambling aren’t they?
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