Sunday, May 31, 2015

Linky Links

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

- 15 things about Fletch on the 30th anniversary of the movie's release.

- The statistical improbability of DeflateGate

- Thanks Obama! Swiss cheese has been losing its holes and now science knows why.

- Holy crap - has anyone seen Bill Belichick and Bill Paxton in the same room?

- The dark past of bowling hustlers.

Saturday, May 30, 2015

DeflateGate

I know everyone has DeflateGate fatigue but I've been meaning to make this observation all week. I think the end result of all of this will be Tom Brady will end up suing the NFL and that lawsuit will cost Roger Goodell (an a number of other NFL front office employees) their job(s).

Why do I think this? First because of the public relations optics and secondly, and more importantly, because of the facts.

Dave Garofalo does a masterful job on the "science" of the Wells Report. The long and the short of it is at best the Patriots had 3 balls just a tick under what was allowable. At worst - the Wells Report purposefully twisted the reporting in order to get the result the NFL wanted.

And no matter what happens at Brady's appeal of his suspension - Roger Goodell has put himself (and the NFL) in a no-win situation. If Goodell takes away all 4 games - he's basically saying the NFL was wrong in the first place and lawsuit from Brady will be like shooting fish in a barrel. If he reduces it to 1,2, or 3 games he will be daring Brady to sue him. If he keeps it at 4 games - a lawsuit is guaranteed. Roger Goodell has been in over his head since he took over as commissioner. This is going to be the final nail in his coffin.

And for all of you out there who are basing your opinion on a Patriots employee calling himself the "deflator" - explain this.

Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

Great look at how things went sour for Tom Thibodeau...  Who knew? Jacques Cousteau didn't learn to swim until he was 40-years old... Great news - study says drinking doesn't affect performance at work... Any story that begins with, "Me and this guy from Germany" immediately has got my interest... Cool - a snail drinking from a bubble... Instead of Lay's Potato Chips - I'm going to come out with Lady's Potato Chips. The only flavor will be Salt 'n Vinegar... Who knew part two? The last battle of the Civil War, the Battle of Palmito Ranch, was a Confederate victory... The real Jurassic World - this is a baby Blue Heron...

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Linky Links

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

- Heh heh

- The perfect handyman's flowchart

- This is awesome!

- A List of Unusual Words

- American Presidents in uniform

- Heh heh

- Who knew? Randy Johnson and Rush's Geddy Lee are good friends

Top 5 - John Wayne Movies

Today would have been the Duke's 108th birthday. here are what I consider his top 5 movies.

1. True Grit
2. The Quiet Man
3. The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance
4. Rooster Cogburn
5. (tie) The Shootist (tie) She Wore a Yellow Ribbon

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Stanley Cup

Did you know that the Stanley Cup was the result of Arthur and Algy Stanley asking their father, Lord Stanley, for a trophy to award to the champions of the Amateur Hockey Association in Montreal? The silver cup only cost $48.67 and was first awarded in 1893.

The first “Stanley Cup” tournament was held in 1894. Lord Stanley never actually attended any of the Stanley Cup hockey games. 

Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

Clay Buchholz is the only regular starting pitcher on the Red Sox with an ERA under 5.00 (and his is 4.58)... Explaining TV to a kid 20-years from now...  I read a headline that said "ISIS Could Buy Nuke" but my mind read it as "ISIS Could Buy Nike". I'm not sure which would be more impressive... This photo is real? I always just assumed it was some sort of photoshop... If I were to run a scam it would be as a pet fish medium. How could anyone prove you weren't actually communicating with a beloved dead goldfish?... Interesting - how far did Sam and Frodo walk?... Do you think there are any NBA GM's out there who would rather have Doc Rivers over Brad Stevens at this point? I mean besides the Clippers GM (who is also Doc Rivers)... Roger Goodell will have to answer this question in court... If you think about it most Popeye cartoons boil down to Brutus trying to rape Olive Oyl and Popeye trying to stop him... I always get a kick out of this animation...

Saturday, May 23, 2015

Heh Heh

In 1986, Mkele Mbembe was on holiday in Kenya after graduating from Northwestern University . On a hike through the bush, he came across a young bull elephant standing with one leg raised in the air. The elephant seemed distressed, so Mbembe approached it very carefully. He got down on one knee and inspected the elephant's foot and found a large piece of wood deeply embedded in it. As carefully and as gently as he could, Mbembe worked the wood out with his hunting knife, after which the elephant gingerly put down its foot.
The elephant turned to face the man, and with a rather curious look on its face, stared at him for several tense moments. Mbembe stood frozen, thinking of nothing else but being trampled. Eventually the elephant trumpeted loudly, turned, and walked away. Mbembe never forgot that elephant or the events of that day.
Twenty years later, Mbembe was walking through the Chicago Zoo with his teenaged son. As they approached the elephant enclosure, one of the creatures turned and walked over to near where Mbembe and his son Tapu were standing. The large bull elephant stared at Mbembe, lifted its front foot off the ground, then put it down. The elephant did that several times then trumpeted loudly, all the while staring at the man.
Remembering the encounter in 1986, Mbembe couldn't help wondering if this was the same elephant. Mbembe summoned up his courage, climbed over the railing and made his way into the enclosure. He walked right up to the elephant and stared back in wonder. The elephant trumpeted again, wrapped its trunk around one of Mbembe's legs and slammed him against the railing, killing him instantly.
Probably wasn't the same elephant.

Linky Links

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

- The story of how the 2004 World Series of Poker was almost cancelled

- The bad decisions that led Russia into World War I

- Heh heh - they say never judge a book by its cover but sometimes...

- Tom Crean seems like a good man

- This video is like watching my childhood flash before my eyes

- 15 things you might not know about John Steinbeck's Of Mice and Men

Monday, May 18, 2015

Louis CK and SNL



Not sure if you've seen the Louis CK monologue on SNL this weekend. It is supposed to be edgy - so edgy that people are supposedly debating if Louis CK went too far this week.

I didn't think it was edgy at all. Then again - I too grew up in the 70's. And as a fan of SNL I remember Richard Pryor and Chevy Chase doing this skit on race. That was edgy (and in 1975).

And pedophiles? How about Buck Henry as Uncle Roy? If anything things have gotten much less edgy at SNL.

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

Modern Americans don't know the horror of either grisly ax murders or pay toilets. I'm not sure which was worse... Norm MacDonald's very sweet tribute to David Letterman... Not sure how I feel when some gives me a gift and says, "its a top shelf item" but then follows up with "at Family Dollar"... I agree 100%... The JAWS character Captain Quint's last name means "fifth" in Latin. In the movie he's the fifth person killed by the shark... This is just awful. I hope the people responsible spend the rest of their lives in jail... Is it me or throughout history have all ax murders been described as "grisly"? As if there might be some sort of "delightful" ax murder...

Monday, May 11, 2015

Sihugo Green

People talk about Sam Bowie over Michael Jordan as the biggest draft day mistake in history but for my money Sihugo Green was a much bigger mistake.

In the 1956 NBA draft, the Rochester Royals had the first pick and the Boston Celtics had the second pick (via a trade with St. Louis). With the first pick Rochester selected 6'2" Sihugo Green of Duquesne. With the second pick, the Boston Celtics selected Bill Russell of San Francisco.

The rest is history.

In case you never heard of Sihugo - he ended up playing 9 season (his last with the Celtics BTW) and averaged 9.2 points per game and 3.3 assists for his career.

Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

The more I think about it the more I like the idea of Tom Brady suing the NFL Commissioner for $200 million for defamation and damages. At the very least it would allow Brady to avoid having to speak about "deflategate" as all he'd have to say is "I can't comment because of our legal suit against the league"...  At first I agreed with this thought. Then I remembered all the entertainment I've gotten from watching certain individuals struggle with the self-checkout lane... So not only are the Jets, Colts and Ravens at the forefront of faux outrage over "deflategate" they are also among 14 NFL teams who got paid to support the troops. What's worse - fake outrage or fake patriotism? Not listed among the 14 teams - the New England Patriots... Today's word for the day is "holoholo" which is Hawaiian for "to ramble for pleasure"... Definitely buying this as a gift for someone in my family...

Saturday, May 09, 2015

0, 11, 4 and 1

The four numbers in the post title (0, 11. 4 and 1) to me explain the crux of the so called "deflategate" kerfuffle and the Wells Report (and yes I freely admit I am a Patriots fanboy).

The number 0: That's the number of balls head referee Walt Anderson recorded the PSI of prior to the AFC Championship game. Without this recorded baseline all comparisons are basically worthless. This was a clear failure on the part of the NFL and their representative in Anderson if this issue is as important to the integrity of the game as they trying to make it out to be. The number 0 is also the number of times that any referee has taken a ball used by Tom Brady out of a game because it felt "off" or under-inflated. That's in Brady's NFL career! No referee has EVER questioned whether a ball being used by the Patriots while Brady was under center was not up to NFL standards in terms of proper inflation.

The numbers 11 and 4: The number 11 is the number of balls the referees checked belonging to the Patriots during halftime of the AFC Championship game. The number 4 is the number of balls the referees checked during the same halftime belonging to the Colts. The reason given for why not all the Colts balls were checked was because there wasn't enough time. So I guess either the issue wasn't important enough (take all the time you want on an instant replay though) or the NFL checked the balls they wanted (i.e. they were interested in "catching" the Patriots and not the Colts). Any scientific experiment has to have a proper control group and comparing 11 balls to another 11 balls used in the same game conditions would have provided such a comparison point. But I guess a fair comparison wasn't what the NFL was after.

The number 1: That's the number of balls used in the AFC Championship game that were actually tampered with. However, since that ball was tampered with by an NFL employee who was trying to sell game balls for his own personal benefit I guess that doesn't count. Seriously did anything about this make it into the Wells report? Or because it reflected badly on the NFL was it white-washed?

I would love to see Tom Brady sue the NFL and Roger Goodell for defamation over the damage Brady's reputation has suffered because of this. I know there are issues with such a suit but I think just for the discovery process and the potential to damage Roger Goodell's already shaky public image such a suit would be worth the cost to Brady. How great would it be for Brady to come out and say, "I have always valued my integrity and good name and to have that sullied by Roger Goodell, a man who has shown almost no integrity since he's taken over as Commissioner, is something I will not stand."

So let it be written - so let it be done.

Monday, May 04, 2015

Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

If I was Dana White I'd have the UFC make a $100 million offer to Floyd Mayweather to fight Ronda Rousey in the octagon. I bet more people would pay to watch that than Saturday's fight. Of course Mayweather wouldn't take the deal but then the UFC could claim that Mayweather is afraid of women who fight back. It would be another nail in the coffin for boxing and great publicity for the UFC... Reconsidering The Wire amidst the violence in Baltimore... Who knew? The reason dealers at casinos clap their hands when leaving the table is to show the "eye in the sky" that they aren't taking any chips away from the table cupped in their hands... Heh heh - Don Pardo's old business card... The Mayan calendar was so exact it was only off one day every 6,000 years... I wonder if Cubs fans are starting to feel about Jon Lester the way some older Red Sox fans felt about Mike Torrez...

Sunday, May 03, 2015

Linky Links

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

- This has to be the best story out of the NFL Draft - Seahawks sign former Green Beret to free-agent deal.

- This really cracks me up. I'm a simple man.

- Heh heh - missing is the sign that says "Now Hiring Losers"

- Heh heh - "If we don't learn from the mistakes of the future, we are doomed to repeat them the first time."

- I can't even imagine attempting this - Gaston Rebuffat mountain climbing in France, 1944

Top 5 - Thoughts on the Kentucky Derby

Here's 5 thoughts on yesterday's Kentucky Derby.

1. I hit the trifecta yesterday but for the second time in the past 5 years the amount I won wasn't enough to cover my bar tab for the day.

2. Bob Costas must really love doing the Kentucky Derby. Watch how happy he is when he's looking down to interview the jockeys.

3. The $2 trifecta paid just over $200. If any of top three horses other than American Pharaoh had won - the payout would have been at least double. I did a 5-horse tri-box with Carpe Diem, Danzig Moon, Dortmund, Firing Line, and American Pharaoh. It costs $120. I may do the same bet for the rest of the triple crown races.

4. How funny would it be if instead of elaborate hats - the ladies (and Johnny Weir) had to wear fake beards?

5. I want to own the suit Rob Gronkowski wore to the Kentucky Derby yesterday.

Friday, May 01, 2015

NFL Draft

Here's an idea that I've had for some time regarding where the NFL Draft should be held. This year the draft is being held in Chicago after being at the Radio City Music Hall in New York for years and years. Why not hold the NFL Draft in the city of the winner of last season's Super Bowl?

I know there would be some logistical challenges since the draft is held at the end of April and the Super Bowl is in early February. I agree that's not much time. But if the league started the process during Conference Championship week there would be almost another month to prepare and just 4 possible cities to worry about.

Getting the NFL Draft would be a great economic boom to the host city. What better way for the NFL to reward success?  Every NFL city has the facilities and the hotel rooms to host the event so why not make the location based upon performance?

Linky Links

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

- So what exactly are eye boogers (aka sleepy eyes)?

- Cool story - why I gave up a $95,000 job to move to an island to scoop ice cream. On my honeymoon I met a guy who quit his high-paying union job at a GM plant in Detroit to move to the Caribbean to work on dive boats. May have been the happiest man I've ever met in my life.

- 30 things you might not know about Cheers

- Interesting interview with the head writer on Inside Amy Schumer

- Heh heh - I think they meant "hors d'oeuvres"