Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Linky Links

Stuff I found interesting or amusing and thought I'd share.

- Oh my God! He does look like Edgar from Men in Black

- Hamas just doesn't care who it kills

- Game of Thrones Season 4 Bloopers. The end is fantastic!

- This Tour de France rider's legs are insane!

- Heh heh - Guy Walks into a Bar

- Holy crap! Scary looking insect!

- Much better than the Tour de France!

Monday, July 28, 2014

Who the Red Sox Should Trade

Brian MacPherson has a list of 10 players the Red Sox may be looking to sell. While I agree that the Red Sox would be wise to move Badenhop, Breslow, Carp, Dubront, Drew, and Gomes - I would disagree about the other names on his list (Lester, Middlebrooks, Miller and Uehara).

To the six players I agree the Red Sox should shop - I would also add:

Shane Victorino - has one more year on his contract ($13 million) and who is know hitting exclusively right-handed. Aren't right handed bats supposed to be in demand?

Edward Mujica - also has one more year on his contract ($4.75 million). I think of Mujica as another Mark Melancon who is dominate in the NL but for whatever reasons just had problems performing in Boston.

My reasons for disagreeing with MacPherson on the four players listed?

Jon Lester - to quote Teddy KGB "play that man his money." If they trade Lester he's gone for good.Pay him his money and just recognize the front office screwed up trying to be cute in their initial offers.

Will Middlebrooks - too valuable a prospect to trade. He has 30-HR potential as a corner infielder. Those don't grow on trees. He's also under team control for another 4 more years! Middlebrooks isn't going anywhere (for now).

Andrew Miller - I will admit that it would make sense to trade Miller since he's a free agent after the season but my heart hopes Miller realizes that he was able to turn his career around in Boston and that leaving may be a mistake.

Koji Uehara - if they do trade Koji I will understand but I would love to see him as the closer for another 2 more years. Main reason not to trade him - who's the closer in 2015? Does the Red Sox front office really want to go through that circus again?

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

As a Red Sox fan I'm really not comfortable knowing that the guy responsible for hiring Bobby Valentine will also be the guy heavily involved in trying to re-sign Jon Lester... The Simpsons accurately predict the future... Pelosi's Sex Tape would be a good name for a band or fantasy football team... I'm kinda hoping Donald Sterling retains control of the Clippers just to see if Doc Rivers and Chris Paul would really sit out the season... Has it really been 10-years since Varitek smooshed his glove in A-Rod's face?... Frisky Bisuits would also be a good name for a band or fantasy football team... Obscure Snapple Fact - during the course of a year you will swallow two live frogs in your sleep...

Friday, July 25, 2014

Top 5 - Rules for Daily Life

Here are 5 basic rules for daily life which if you follow will bring you happiness. Feel free to Google each rule for more edification. (Place Smiley emoticon here)

1. Say YES to life!

2. Do the work!

3. Don't be afraid ("I go before you always" Christians - "Fear is the mind killer" Sci Fi folks)

4. Don't be a dick!

5. Don't be a pussy! (Same link as above)

Thursday, July 24, 2014

The Rise of Data and the Death of Personal Freedom

Recently I read this article titled "The rise of data and the death of politics". However when I read it I felt it would have been better titled "The rise of data and the death of personal freedom."

If everything in the future will be tracked by data and if everything is subjected to feedback such as you see today on Amazon.com or Yelp - ratings for passengers, drivers, hosts, guests, students, teachers, patients, caregivers, customers, servers, etc., etc., - what will be the future ramifications of bad reviews? With bad reviews having the potential to actually wreak havoc with people's reputations and business livelihoods - is it far fetched to foresee anti-troll legislation being passed to punish gratuitous Internet troll behavior? Would it be equally far fetched to think such legislation being stretched by restaurants to silence bad reviews? By students to punish teachers who don't treat that student like the special little snowflake they think they are? In such a future what would be the incentive of giving feedback or reviews at all?

What about involuntary data feedback? Your car GPS alerts the police about a potential DUI if you've parked at a bar for too long. The biometric app in your smart phone alerts your insurance carrier if you don't exercise enough during the week. Your web searches are included in job interview background checks.

In Eastern European Communists countries people were conditioned from birth to keep their heads down and not make waves. How much different would it be in the new data feedback controlled state where Cyberdyne is watching your every move? It scares me. I'm already starting to keep my head down.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Minnie Driver for Rom-Com Hall of Fame

I am not a Rom-Com (romantic comedy) type of guy (although I admit to being a complete sucker for You've Got Mail). However I have seen enough of the genre to be taken aback by Grantland's Rom-Com Hall of Fame: Champions and Challengers. About half way though the (long) article I kept wondering "when are they going to mention Minnie Driver?" But they never did.

I would argue that Minnie's three year run of Debi Newberry in Grosse Point Blank (1997), Skylar in Good Will Hunting (1997) and Jane in Disney's Tarzan (1999) was as good a run than anyone who made the list. Maybe she's not included because her career was like Sandy Koufax's but instead of retiring after the 1966 World Series she quit the major leagues and went on to pitch in the Pacific Coast League (nothing really memorable since Y2K).

Maybe it was the quirkiness of Minnie Driver and the quirkiness of her major roles that kept her from the list? But for people smart enough to see that Jerry Maguire was not a sports movie but a rom-com to not see that Good Will Hunting was also a rom-com at its heart is frustrating. An off the charts broken genius is healed by Robin Williams cracking therapy enough to chase the woman of his dreams is the basic plotline of Good Will Hunting. Sure Minnie Driver's character did not get jilted at the altar like many of the women on the list but in Grosse Point Blank she did get jilted at the senior prom! And Tarzan and Jane is one of the most historic romantic pairings in all of literature. People forget that Tarzan loses Jane in the original Edgar Rice Burrough's book. He gives her up to a lesser man because he thinks that's what will make her happy.

Quirky Minnie Driver should have made the Rom-Com Hall of Fame Challengers list! There I said it! How do you like them apples?