Sunday, September 30, 2018

Couldn't Agree More


Linky Links

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

- This is awesome - good throw sir!

- The world's first commercially available flying car goes on sale in the US next month. Looks pretty cool but what's the price tag?

- The most important graph in the world. Brought to you by Capitalism.

- And God bless you too Buzz!

- Is Elon Musk's job in jeopardy? This week in Musk World.

- Saudi Arabia faces $6 billion lawsuit by 9/11 insurers. I know this story is a year and a half old but I can't seem to find any updates on the lawsuit.

- Bummer - handjobs are all sold out!

Saturday, September 29, 2018

Patriots Thoughts

The Patriots should try having Rob Gronkowski line up in the backfield as a way to get him more touches in the offense. It would be a look the Dolphins aren't prepared for and it would allow the offense to get the ball in Gronk's hands on pitches, screens and even hand-offs. You could also have Gronk go in motion to create miss-matches that way too. Worth a try.

Of the nine players taken in the last draft - six of them are injured including their top pick Isaiah Wynn who is out for the season with a torn Achilles. You can't plan for that.

If New England loses Sunday they would fall three full games behind Miami in the standings. Couple that with the fact that my girlfriend is a Dolphins fan and this game is pretty much a MUST win for the Pats Sunday. Oh and I also think they will cover the -6.5 points.

Go Pats!

Mike Post



What John Williams was to movie scores - Mike Post was to TV theme music. For series as diverse as Law & Order, The A-Team, NYPD Blue, L.A. Law and Hill Street Blues plus the above, my favorite, the theme music to the Rockford Files.

Mr. Post turned 74 today. Happy birthday!

Friday, September 28, 2018

Hey There Cthulhu



One of the classics.

Good King Wenceslas



Good King Wenceslas is one of my favorite Christmas carols. Did you know that he was a real person and that in 935 AD on this very day (September 28th) he was killed by his brother?

Now maybe you can think of that cheery fact every Christmas when you hear the tune. At least you can take comfort in thinking no matter how stressful your family gatherings are least you probably won't be killed by one of your siblings.

Thursday, September 27, 2018

Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

Things that make you say WTF!?! Seriously how is that a real photo?... Calling Michael Avenatti a "creepy porn lawyer" isn't an insult it's the truth. It reminds me of one of my favorite Ronald Reagan quotes, "How do you insult a pig by calling it a pig?"...  The "Pied Piper of Raccoons" - another thing that begs the question - WTF!?! Seriously WTF? Is this some sort of indication of the End Times or something?... Interesting piece by Victor Davis Hanson. Trump's success is literally driving the Democrats insane... Some people poke fun at the US Coast Guard and others seem to always forget them when trying to name the branches of the US military but I bet if you compared the Coast Guard by itself it would rank as one of the largest navy's in the world... Where do we find such men? Marine veteran, 80, will receive Medal of Honor for Vietnam valor... I'm a registered Independent but I strongly feel that any Republican that votes against confirming Brett Kavanaugh at this point should be kicked out of the Republican Party and stripped of any leadership positions in the Senate...

Linky Links

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

- A 92-year old woman has been buried in Nebraska with full British military honors for a secret she held for decades - her role as a German code breaker during WWII. Such a great story.

- Heh heh - the fireworks were the climax of the evening

- How great that this exists - James Brown, Michael Jackson and Prince all on the same stage

- US-Mexico trade deal could be released Friday.

- Heh Heh

- Ha - awesome!

- And what about Canada and NAFTA?

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

The Man Who Saved the World

On this day 35-years ago Lt. Col. Stanislav Petrov may have single-handedly saved the world from global thermonuclear war.

I was a senior in high school and my biggest concern probably had to deal with whoever we were playing in football that weekend. Little did I know how close we all were to being incinerated.

How is it that Lt. Col. Stanislav Petrov isn't a household name? This is real-life Bruce Willis in Armageddon type stuff here.

Dunkin

"I'm going to Dunkin' do you want anything?" That has been such a common question asked in New England for over a decade. We have been shortening the name of Dunkin' Donuts to just "Dunkin" it seems forever.

That's why the news that Dunkin' Donuts is officially shortening their name to just "Dunkin" has been met with a yawn in New England.

It should be noted that the name of the franchise (aside from the spelling of "donut" vs "doughnut") came from their unique traditional plain donut that had a "bump" or "handle" that you could use to hold your donut while you dunked it into your coffee. Hence the name. Just thought that bit of Americana should be mentioned.

The name change that I've been expecting because of the times we live in is for Dunkin to change the name of their "Munchkin" donut holes. I mean society forced the name change of Midget Hockey. Can the name change of these tasty treats be far behind? Think about it - if you had a little person working in your office and you brought in Munchkins from Dunkin's as an office treat on a regular basis - could you be reported to human resources for harassment?

Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

People who say Sony Michel isn't an adequate replacement for Dion Lewis on the Patriots are right. But Lewis wasn't supposed to be the replacement for Lewis. Rex Burkhead and James White were supposed to replace Lewis' snaps and production... Meth is a hell of a drug... If you told me a decade ago that Bill Cosby would be going to jail - I would have bet anything it would have been for being the New Coke spokesman... Wait President Trump signed a new free trade agreement with South Korea? Shouldn't this be bigger news?... People seem to forget that it took Dion Lewis 5 seasons to get where he is in the NFL. In Lewis' first 2 seasons he had just 192 yards combined in rushing and receiving yards. Sony Michel, if he stays healthy, will be more productive than that... Douglas Adams on our reactions to technology over time... Someone should let it slip that Mother Theresa was a Republican just to see what the Left would do to her reputation...

Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Linky Links

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

- Could malaria be close to being eliminated? This could have a huge impact on developing nations.

- Good for Bill Burr! File this under when good things happen to good people (who work hard).

- Douglas Adams (RIP) discusses the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy

- And speaking of aliens - scientists detect more mysterious radio signals from distant galaxy. And by distant we're talking 3 BILLION light years away. So pump the brakes in the aliens talk. Even if it was from an intelligent source chances are by now something has happened to that civilization.

- Dr Charles Kao, Nobel laureate who revolutionized fiber optics, dies at 84. The modern world owes Dr. Kao tremendous gratitude for his work.

- Interesting - Vladimir Putin's hand picked candidates losing to candidates linked to a party with supposed connections to the mafia? Or are Putin's candidates losing because Russians want to send him a message about his planned pension reforms?

- Fake Gatorade? Who knew?

Bill Simmons

Today is Bill Simmons (the artist formerly known as the Boston Sports Guy) 49th birthday. Happy birthday Bill!

As a reminder here's a column Bill wrote back in September of 2009 where he basically gave up on the New England Patriots. Since that column was written these Patriots have been to 4 Super Bowls and won 2 (both in historic fashion).

I fully expect Simmons to recycle many of the same arguments soon in saying it's time to give up on these 2018 Patriots. He's basically become the West Coast Dan Shaughnessy (and no that's not a compliment).

The Beast of Gévaudan

File this under "You learn something new every day." I had never heard of the beast of Gévaudan but I guess "some consider the creature to be the French equivalent of the Loch Ness Monster."

Robert Louis Stevenson described the beast as "the Napoleon Bonaparte of wolves" while some believe that it was a werewolve (although most attacks came in the morning) or an escaped lion or hyena. The beast is said to have killed eighty-nine people (fifteen women, sixty-eight children, and six men). The deaths were real and so you would have to think the beast was real too.

One of the mysteries of history.

Monday, September 24, 2018

Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

"A mind is like a parachute. It doesn't work if it is not open." Frank Zappa... The word "lock" has seemed to have lost all meaning in the sports betting community... The use of human shields is always a cowardly and depraved act. It appears to me that Dianne Feinstein and the Democrats are basically using the equivalent of human shields as a last ditch effort to forestall the Kanavaugh Supreme Court nomination... Interesting discussion on the 25% import tariff the US places on any light truck not built in America. As much as I'm for free-trade I'd like to know the potential impact on the foreign manufacturers (like Nissan and Toyota) who have chosen to build their light trucks in the USA. Would those jobs remain here if the tariff was repealed?... Fact that may only interest me - Matt Ryan finished 7th in the 2007 Heisman voting. Of the top 10 vote getters only Chase Daniel (4th) and Chris Long (10th) are still active in the NFL. Matt Ryan has by far had the best NFL career of the top 10 finishers that year which was won by Tim Tebow... Conservatives who voted for Evan McMullin in 2016 have serious buyers remorse and many now wish they voted for Jonathan "the Impaler" Sharkey instead. I always viewed McMullin as an opportunistic fraud.. As a Boston sports fan let me say that last night's loss by the Patriots is very disappointing but before you feel any sympathy please remember these Patriots have won us 5 Super Bowls, the Red Sox currently have the best record in baseball and both the Bruins and Celtics are about to start their seasons and fans are very excited. Just the same - I'm going to stay 100% away from sports talk radio today. I have no need for the fellowship of the miserable...

Voyager Spacecraft and Richard Nixon

Outside the Apollo moon landing the Voyager Spacecraft may be NASA's signature program (argue the Mars rover if you like). The thing that often or always gets overlooked is the fact that the Voyager Spacecraft (Voyager I and Voyager II) would have never happened if it wasn't for Richard Nixon.

Yet Nixon never seems to get any credit.

Seriously. Can you find any mention of Nixon in the Wikipedia page on the Voyager program? Without Nixon granting NASA the money specifically for this project this never happens. Without Voyager there's no "pale blue dot". And without Carl Sagan's elegant words the appetite for space exploration probably is not close to what it is today.

Yet Nixon's name comes up less frequently when it comes to the Voyager program than Chuck Berry's.

And if you think I'm trying to give Nixon too much credit please remember that George McGovern stated in no uncertain terms that if he was elected President he was going to cut the space shuttle program and redirect those funds toward domestic programs. Do you think the Voyager science experiment would have got funding if it wasn't Nixon in office?

No chance. Yet Nixon never gets any credit.

Sunday, September 23, 2018

Rogue Satellites

Interesting story of how the CEO of Swarm Technologies launched "rogue satellites" - four small satellites called SpaceBees to be exact.  The twist is that the FCC had denied Swarm Technologies permission to launch these satellites but Swarm and their CEO Sara Spangelo did it anyway.

The questions and issues abound.

These SpaceBees are small communications satellites that would create a network allowing Internet connected devices back on Earth to communicate with each other. Among other problems these SpaceBees are too small (10 centimeters x 10 centimeters x 2.8 centimeters) to be tracked back on Earth by the FCC. Swarm argues that if they can track the devices then others including the FCC should be able to as well.

But it is not just the issue of space junk (roughly more than 4,700 defunct satellites and over 29,000 pieces of space debris) littering our orbit. These SpaceBees didn't have permission to be there. What else is up there without permission? Who should control granting permission? How can you disable rogue satellites once in place?

Sounds like we may be getting our Space Force in place just in time. And a Space Fence too!

Saturday, September 22, 2018

Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

Because kids don't know any history these days - they probably think "the erection of the Berlin Wall" is something dirty... I find this kind of monitoring by the government just plain scary... Snake Plissken? I thought that guy was dead!... The word "alamo" is Spanish for the cottonwood tree. "Remember the Cottonwood!" just doesn't have the same ring as a rallying cry though... This is funny - well because I don't like Steelers fans... If I were a mad scientist - I'd cross a bunny rabbit with a duck for no better reason than because I could do it and because I think this rabbit-duck would look cool floating on a pond. No I haven't been drinking - why do you ask?... Who cares? I'm guessing that Fitzpatrick having made much more money in his career than Aikman did in his bothers Aikman even if he'd never admit it... 

Happy Hobbit Day!

Today is the birthdays of both Bilbo and Frodo Baggins and is celebrated internationally as Hobbit Day.

Be sure to have a second breakfast and maybe a pint or two to celebrate!

Thursday, September 20, 2018

Linky Links

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

- Pretty good list of Gangster movies - though I'd say both American Gangster and True Romance belong on the list. Honorable mention to Road to Perdition and though I haven't seen Sexy Beast I did enjoy another under-the-radar Ben Kingsley gangster movie You Kill Me

- Interesting - perhaps a reason to take any Wall Street insiders complaints about China tariffs with a huuuge grain of salt.

- 12 things that Lee Kuan Yew taught me about the world. Very instructive thoughts from the "Warren Buffet of Singapore" via the Farnam Street blog

- Air Force Secretary lays road map to new Space Force

- US credit card fraud down by 75% because of EMV chips. Good! Make sure all of your cards have a chip.

- This is why I won't be buying Ian O'Connor's new book on Bill Belichick. If you want Belichick's story read David Halberstam's Education of a Coach

- So you're saying those 6-foot long CVS receipts gave me diabetes? Knew it!

Gridiron Genius and Bill Walsh's Standard of Performance

Currently reading Gridiron Genius by Michael Lombardi. So far a very enjoyable read.

Early on Lombardi shared Bill Walsh's Standard of Performance and I thought these 17 tenets were worthy of note.

1. Exhibit a ferocious and intelligently applied work ethic directed at continual improvement.

2. Demonstrate respect for each person in the organization.

3. Be deeply committed to learning and teaching.

4. Be fair.

5. Demonstrate Character.

6. Honor the direct connection between details and improvement; relentlessly seek the latter.

7. Show self -control, especially under pressure.

8. Demonstrate and prize loyalty.

9. Use positive language and have a positive attitude.

10. Take pride in my effort as an entity separate from the result of that effort.

11. Be willing to go the extra distance for the organization.

12. Deal appropriately with victory and defeat, adulation and humiliation.

13. Promote internal communication that is both open and substantive

14. Seek poise in myself and those that I lead

15. Put the team's welfare and priorities ahead of my own.

16. Maintain an ongoing level of concentration and focus that is abnormally high

17. Make sacrifice and commitment the organization's trademark.

This Standard of Performance could easily be applied to any organization or even as a personal code of conduct.

Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

GMC should come out with a special edition Denali that would only be available in Ohio but called the McKinley (too obscure?)... Heh Heh... I still firmly believe that the NFL would have been much better off if all those years ago instead of hiring Roger Goodell they got a mannequin in a suit and piped in H. Jon Benjamin's voice whenever the Commissioner needed to "speak"...  Cloudzilla!... Not to belittle the damage or human suffering in any way but it seems that we have reached a point where we gauge the severity of a hurricane's damage by whether Waffle House closes and if the death toll is higher than the average gun deaths of a weekend in Chicago... Call me a cynic but I think one reason Dianne Feinstein pulled this stunt on Judge Kavanaugh was to hopefully get people to forget her driver for 20-years was a Chinese spy... For the record I'm 100% wait and see on the Pats acquiring Josh Gordon. When New England acquired Corey Dillion and Randy Moss I was on board right away. This feels different...

Linky Links

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

- This is a pretty interesting power ranking of the Top 25 College football teams.

- I'm excited to see Catch-22 brought to life as a 6 episode mini-series. Strange how there seems to be so little buzz about this project.

- Newly released Eric Holder memo: Feds can use FISA to spy on journalists. OK - next question: what journalists did the Obama Administration spy on if any?

- Tesla shares drop after its announced DOJ requested documents after Elon Musk's "taking company private" comments. Always something in Musk World.

- Interesting observation on Korea from Scott Adams

- This actually looks like a pretty cool idea (I'd probably never wear one though)

- Climate alarmism fails the scientific test of observation

Talk Like a Pirate Day

Happy Talk Like a Pirate Day mateys!

You really don't hear the phrase "shiver me timbers" anymore - not even on Talk Like a Pirate Day. The phrase probably gained its original popularity via the character Long John Silver in Treasure Island.  I understand the phrase "well blow me down" is still popular in certain circles - not that there's anything wrong with that.

Many people have heard of Talk Like a Pirate Day but did you know that April 23rd is Talk Like Shakespeare Day?

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Dennis Johnson

Today would have been the man Larry Bird called the best teammate he ever had 64th birthday.

The 5x All-Star, 3x NBA World Champion and Hall of Famer left us way too soon.

Still bugs me that he wasn't voted into the Hall while he was still alive.

"Bonehemian" Rhapsody on 28 Trombones



Love fun stuff like this.

Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

The new Murphy Brown is going to be an absolute disaster - ratings and otherwise. Who thought this would be a good idea?... Creepy Porn Lawyer is going to totally stick as a nickname... You know that hypnotist dude from the GEICO commercial has a rape room in his basement. By far the creepiest commercial on TV... This is fascinating - can't stop thinking of the math involved... If NIKE's next earnings report is down certain commentators and analysts will blame the Trump economy for NIKE's year over year performance... What the hell's this I'm seeing?... Serious question - did Dianne Feinstein speak out against Al Franken? If not - why not?...

Monday, September 17, 2018

The Decision Matrix

Shane Parrish has an interesting post on the Decision Matrix he developed and employed while working at an intelligence agency.

While I like this decision matrix - I still think the decision matrix against which all are measured is still Dwight Eisenhower's Decision Matrix.

Maybe the best practice would be to put the charts for both above your work area and prioritize accordingly.

Saturday, September 15, 2018

This Week in Musk World

Oh my God! Elon Musk smoked weed with Joe Rogan! Yes the Tesla stock took an immediate dive from people who overreacted but almost as quickly rebounded to where it belongs.

Lefsetz has his take on the Rogan interview.  My take is Joe Rogan did the best he could to engage Musk on a series of topics and that Elon's genius was obvious to anyone paying attention. The problem was that Musk lies somewhere on the communication spectrum between Nobel Prize physicists Paul Dirac (infamously reticent) and Richard Feynman (famously outgoing and humorous). No wonder it's the 15 seconds of pot smoking that gets the attention. I for one wish the Spaceballs story of why Musk sells flamethrowers got more attention (shout out to another genius - Mel Brooks).

Likewise this week when his side, side project The Boring Company announced that the space-age bricks made from displaced earth would be given away free to low cost housing projects - the media chose to instead focus on Musk using those same bricks to create a medieval watchtower for the HQ of the company. (OK I can kind of see the point being more interested in the Watchtower but now I'm curious if Musk gets sued by the Jehovah's Witnesses.)

But the real news of the week in Musk World was when Musk announced SpaceX has signed up their first private passenger for an around the moon voyage. Who is this mysterious private passenger? You'll have to tune into the next episode of Musk World to find out!

Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

A person starting at age 20 should read the top 50 classic novels of all time and repeat the exercise every 10-years for the rest of their life. It's amazing the different wisdom that can be gleamed from the same material at different stages of life... The economics of price gouging and while we're at it - why red peppers are more expensive than green peppers. That ends the economics lessons for the day... The Uncouth Hermit will definitely be the name of my next fantasy sports team... You have to admit that the man is self aware and has a sense of humor... Controversial opinion that I won't back away from - people who try to toilet train their cats have too much time on their hands and should be made to do public works... The modern Bukowski will Tweet his poetry and go unnoticed... And boom goes the dynamite...

Friday, September 14, 2018

Top 5 - Musicians Who Have Choked to Death On Their Own Vomit

Thought it was time to revisit this post which has become a bit of an annual tradition. Jimi Hendrix headlines a list of musicians who choked to death on their own vomit.

1. Jimi Hendrix - guitar god
2. Bonn Scott - original lead singer for AC/DC
3. John Bohnam - drummer Led Zepplin
4. Tommy Dorsey - bandleader and brother of Jimmy Dorsey
5. Mamma Cass - rock myth has her choking on a ham sandwich which technically isn't vomit but since she really died of a heart attack anyway - I thought I'd toss her in at #5 just to round off the list.

Even though everyone knows how Bonn Scott died - his death certificate actually says "death by misadventure". Maybe that's because it was unclear if he choked on his own vomit. You can't dust for vomit you know.

PS - My goal in life is now to have "death by misadventure" be my official cause of death. 

PPS - If it was just "musicians who have choked to death" Michael Hutchence from INXS would have been very high on the list. (Too soon?)

Thursday, September 13, 2018

We Choose to Got to the Moon

JFK gave his "We choose to go to the moon" speech 56-years ago yesterday.

You can read the full text of his speech here.

Well worth your time to recall how far we have come in the past 56-years. And to ponder how far we have yet to go.


Linky Links

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

- Steven Pressfield on Lawrence of Arabia's motorcycle (and the rules of Ins and Outs)

- Interesting poker tip

- Democrats "fire back" at Trump's new Mexican NAFTA agreement. I'm not sure that Democrats really want to be seen blocking a new NAFTA deal. How would that help them with Mexican-American voters and the optics of being obstructionists plays right into Trump's hands. "They don't want free trade, they want to raise taxes, they have no plans of their own, they just want to block any progress, etc."

- "The Right Trousers" wearable technology that can help the elderly with mobility issues. Not quite "bionic pants" but we're getting there.

- Long read interview of Paul McCartney in GQ. Worth the time.

- Price gouging in college education and hospital services.

- Good God! They're turning the movie into a documentary! Damn you Dick Cheney and your weather machine!

Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

July was National Beer Month and August was National Anal Sex Month (seriously - you can look it up!). They should combine those two and make September National Regrets Month... Opulence - I has it... I would pay good money to see a remake of the movie Barfly if it cast Jay Cutler in the Mickey Rourke role... If Hillary Clinton were a Harry Potter character - there's no doubt in my mind that she'd be Delores Umbridge... Heh heh - take the guy with the huge bong!... Still say that the James Earl Jones character in Field of Dreams could have easily paid off Ray's mortgage to save the farm. That cheap fuck was a best selling author AND owned a successful software company in the midst of the tech bubble. One of the things that always bugged me about that movie... Clint Eastwood is not pulling any punches... 

Truth - Whether You Believe It or Not


Truer words were never spoken.

Via Cultural Offering

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Linky Links

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

- Did tariffs make the USA great? A long-read Q&A with trade historian Douglas A. Irwin

- Cool - someone should ask Neil Peart to critique his technique

- Interesting - how much of the world's oceans are actually fished? One study says 55% while another says 4% - both studies used the same data

- Good! More companies are dropping college degree requirements for new hires

- Throw Mamma from the Train II starring Axl Rose

- I'm a fan of Victor Davis Hanson - his recent The Circus of Resistance is worth a read

- Agreed - this was the greatest first pitch ever

The WooSox

I've been meaning to comment on the move of the Pawtucket Red Sox to Worcester for some time. The $101 million the City of Worcester would be investing has been criticized by among others the Worcester Business Journal.
 "The idea that this is going to serve as a catalyst for economic development, which is the hope - and I emphasize the word hope - is misguided," Robert Baade, an economist at Lake Forest College in Illinois, said of Worcester's stadium proposal. 
All these college economy professors quoted in the article and none speak about the impact universities can have on a city's economy?

Worcester's two mottos for as long as I've been alive are "Heart of the Commonwealth" (I'll get back to this one) and "Every Great American City has at least one University - Worcester has Ten." Holy Cross, WPI, Clark University, UMass Medical, Mass School of Pharmacy, Assumption College, Worcester State (aka UMass Worcester), Becker, Quinsigamond and that tenth which has been in flux lately.

Point is Worcester is a college town and college students for the most part go home for the summer. The WooSox would attract people to the city during the summer months between the end and start of the college schedules. Perfect!

It that $101 million wouldn't just be for a stadium either. It would also pay for 2 hotels, 225 residential units and at least 65,000 square feet of retail space. The WooSox will give people a reason to come to Worcester - and spend their money while they're here. This development would help make Worcester the "Heart of the Commonwealth" in more than just geography.

People in New England love the Boston Red Sox but honestly Fenway has become so friggin expensive that outside of season ticket holders most regular folks are lucky to make just one or two pilgrimages a year (if that). Coming to Worcester to see major league talent for half the price in a brand new stadium - that's really attractive. It would be these visitors - not Worcester taxpayers - who in the end would be paying for this $101 million development.

The reality is the Pawtucket Red Sox never came close to getting the potential attendance a AAA affiliate of the Red Sox should bring because it was in Pawtucket. In a hard to get to part of Pawtucket to boot. Where there really weren't many bar or restaurant choices. All that changes in Worcester.

And the State will be kicking in $36 million in infrastructure - mainly fixing Kelley Square. The only downside I can see is that while this is being built the traffic on 290 is going to suck! Good thing I know the back roads.

Too True

Something to think about the day after 9/11. The day that once was followed by the words "Never Forget".

Tuesday, September 11, 2018

Monday, September 10, 2018

Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

People are falling for this Trump Troll Tweet by saying its happened a bunch of times the last 100-years (some even including every quarter its happened). Trump then gets to point out that if it's so common - how come it never happened when Obama was in charge? And please nobody is buying that we are simply living in a continuation of the Obama Economy... It think this is an important message about the courage to do the right thing... OK I'll say it! Aaron Rogers was able to come back last night because of "pliability". All the best QB's are doing it... Speaking of Aaron Rogers - I think the one thing I learned from the first NFL Sunday is that Rogers is OK with people thinking his agent is a douchebag... Rest in peace comic actor Bill Daily who is best remembered as Bob Newhart's neighbor Howard Borden on The Bob Newhart Show and as Major Healey on I Dream of Jeannie... After the tie with the Browns it might be a good time to remind people that Pittsburgh led the NFL with the number of broken tackles allowed last season. This isn't Dick LeBeau's Steeler defense anymore... This message on courage stands alone but also goes hand-in-glove with the message I linked to above...

Linky Links

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

- The complicated legacy of Warren Zevon

- If this law was still in effect the people who make or serve Michelob Ultra would be killed

- Interesting point - Kim Kardashian has done more for criminal justice reform than Colin Kaepernick

- This is mesmerizing 

- I laughed way too much at this

- Very cool!

9/11


The Twin Towers on the evening of September 10, 2001.

The next morning the world changed and hasn't been the same since.

Never forget.

Sunday, September 09, 2018

Go Pats!

Go Pats!

Things You Control

From Shane Parrish
Things You Control:
Your Effort
Your Beliefs
Your Identity
Your Actions
Your Attitude
Your Integrity
Your Thoughts
The Food You Eat
How Kind You Are
The Media You Read
How Reflective You Are
How Thoughtful You Are
The People You Listen To
The Type of Friend You Are
You control a lot in your life.

Friday, September 07, 2018

Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

Personally I think the writer of the anonymous NYT opinion piece was a hold-over from the Obama Administration...  I'm still disappointed that the nickname "the Junk Mailer" doesn't show up on Brett Favre's Football-Reference.com page... "Mumble, mumble, mumble, discontention"(My favorite thing to say under my breath at meetings that run too long)... On many trips I've asked myself the same question... Why hasn't Taylor Swift spoken out about the Nike Kaepernick ad controversy? What is she hiding?... Legal brothels in Nevada have added the "Philly Special" to their "menu". (In actuality they just changed the name of their "Mexican Avalanche" offering.) Only the best for Eagles fans... Heh Heh...

Top 5 - Burt Reynolds Movies

Burt Reynolds has passed away at age 82. Here are what I consider his 5 best movies.

1. Deliverance
2. The Longest Yard
3. Boogie Nights
4. Sharky's Machine
5. (tie) Semi-Tough (tie) Gator

I find it funny that Reynold's supposedly turned down the role of Han Solo in Star Wars. I just can't picture him in that role. It should also be noted that I've never been a fan of Smokey and the Bandit (sorry - not sorry). On the flip side I think his TV show Evening Shade still doesn't get he credit it deserves. 

FWIW - Reynolds was also the star of my favorite GIF of all time.

Warren Zevon



Warren Zevon passed away 15-years ago. If you have a sandwich today - make sure you really enjoy it.

Thursday, September 06, 2018

Linky Links

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

- Meanwhile in Iran - pulling out of the Iran Nuclear Deal may topple the government. Down with America but can we please trade our currency for US dollars?!?!

- FDA approves magic mushrooms for treating depression

- Cool Belichick story on how competitive Tom Brady is

- Heh Heh

- An effort afoot to make Quebec the 51st State. I hope Parti 51 starts to get more coverage. Love the idea of PM Trudeau scuttling NAFTA mostly to preserve protections for Quebec dairy farmers meanwhile Quebecois organizing to become part of the US so they wouldn't be subject to American tariffs.

- What was lost in Brazil's devastating museum fire

- It is a valid point

Wednesday, September 05, 2018

Bob Newhart



The man is a comic genius. And an American treasure.

Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

"It was a damp squib of a fart" is the "It was a dark and stormy night" of intestinal distress stories... To be honest - the only Secretary of Labor I can name off the top of my head is completely fictional... If I were Under Armour now would be a good time to announce that they've signed Buzz Aldrin to a shoe deal... How the Cubs informed Bob Newhart's philosophy on life... So if the Left supports Nike's Kaepernick ad campaign and the Right boycotts Nike - who is the real loser here? Yep - Birkenstock! Too bad they're a private company otherwise you could short their stock... It has now been 4-years years since Kim Kardashian "broke the Internet" but this still makes me laugh every time... Happy 89th birthday to comedy legend Bob Newhart! Here's to many, many more...

Tuesday, September 04, 2018

Nike - Go Woke Go Broke

So Nike has chosen Colin Kaepernick as the face of it's new ad campaign. That decision was immediately criticized and made fun of.

Some of the humor was very dark.

Some of it was pointed and kind of got to the root of the issue at hand.

They say that all press is good press. I disagree. When Iran comes out in support of your new ad campaign - maybe, just maybe - you have a problem.

It will be interesting to watch Nike stock today (NYSE: NKE). My guess is supporters try to rally the stock but it closes slightly down and the $82 per share will be it's high water mark for a long, long time to come.

Nike has ruined any goodwill they had with many people with this ad campaign. And that includes me. I often go to the Outlet Stores in Lee MA. Mainly for the Nike and Under Armor shops. I've spent hundreds of dollars there in the past two years. But not any more.

I'm not going to throw out all my Nike clothing out of spite. But I won't be buying anything new. I have a pair of Nike basketball sneakers that was was going to replace this fall. I'll still replace them. But just not with a new pair of Nike's. I think many, many others will react just as I am. Nothing loud to voice our displeasure. We'll just stop buying their overpriced products.

Their price stock will suffer as a result. That's our form of protest.

I feel bad for Tiger Woods.

EDIT: Nike stock finished the day down 3.16% or $2.60 per share. 

Just Saying

I'm pretty sure Iron Man could beat all three dragons from Game of Thrones single-handedly. Pretty positive about it.

Also pretty sure that even if Iron Man somehow fell under the control of the Night King - he wouldn't be that dangerous. Part of what makes Iron Man great is Tony Stark's brilliance and I'm guessing zombie Tony Stark would be pretty stupid. Like Wolf Blitzer on Jeopardy-level stupid.

Just saying.

Monday, September 03, 2018

Linky Links

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

- Really? I knew that tomatoes are technically fruit but this just seems wrong.

- Interesting - Montaigne and reading

- This is old (but new to me) - why the Buffalo Bills are the best team in the NFL

- Cool libraries from around the world

- Heh Heh

- "Diversity in the tech industry... Imagine that." Seahawks owner Paul Allen gives $100,000 to help Republicans maintain US House

- I was going to make a "first the robots came for the Lionfish and I said nothing" joke but that would have been in poor taste (unlike the invasive Lionfish which are supposedly delicious)

Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

The Revolutionary War officially ended on this day in 1783 with John Adams, Benjamin Franklin and John Jay signing of the Treaty of Paris. How many high school seniors could tell you what the Treaty of Paris is these days? Not many...  The 1971 Baltimore Orioles had four 20-game winners (Cueller, Dobson, Palmer, and McNally). There may not be a single 20-game winner this season in all of MLB as just three pitchers in all of baseball have 17 wins with not many starts left in the regular season. Times have changed... An X-Files marathon is coming to BBC America. Was the X-Files secretly produced in England by the BBC? To me this is like Showtime running a Sopranos marathon. Or is it strange like The History Channel no longer showing history documentaries... This is awful. Terrible news so sad. If I were President I would scour our National Archives and museums for any Brazilian artifacts or documents to and donate them back to help ease the pain of this loss...  Buzz Aldrin makes his feelings about planting the American flag on the moon quite known.. The Red Sox magic number is now just 18... Am I a bad person for laughing at this?...

Niall Ferguson: The 6 Killer Apps of Prosperity

Very interesting talk by economist/historian Niall Ferguson on the 6 killer apps of prosperity. He lists certain "apps" as the driving force explaining Western domination in the last century and also how these "apps" are why "rest-ern" civilizations are catching or passing Western nations today. The West's killer apps are:

1. Competition
2. The Scientific Revolution
3. Property Rights
4. Modern Medicine
5. The Consumer Society
6. The Work Ethic

I can also highly recommend Niall Ferguson's The Ascent of Money. And speaking of The Ascent of Money - Ferguson is adding two new chapters for an upcoming edition. That's going on my reading list.

Sunday, September 02, 2018

Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

This was a classy move - by both teams... "The Bills marketing department this year has gone with the slogan 'One Heart, Beat Louder.' Our projections predict what that slogan literally tries to tell you: they're going to get beat louder this year." Football Outsiders 2018 Almanac... Bill Clinton never disappoints... "But if you don't understand what this is, its when you put your ding-dong sauce out and give them a sample." Marshawn Lynch (no relation) explaining urine testing (also from the Football Outsiders 2018 Almanac)... A thing of true beauty... This is how Buzz Aldrin treats his American flag. Do you think Neil Armstrong would be any less patriotic? Going to take a hard pass on seeing First Man... If they came out with a preview showing Jennifer Garner planting an American flag in the chest of a bad guy the movie Peppermint would absolutely crush at the box office...

Linky Links

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

- Interesting - water found in Jupiter's Great Red Spot. Precursor for life on the largest planet?

- Wasps are getting drunk and terrorizing people in England. Its like one of Orwell's lesser known stories come to life.

- Maggie understood

- What they don't tell you was the article was sponsored by the Big Cucumber lobby

- Wow - it's scary how much personal data Google is accumulating. I guess "Don't be evil" is right out the window.

- Can't see how Kavanaugh doesn't get on the Supreme Court

- Elizabeth Warren's plan to nationalize corporations. Scary! I USED to think some aspects of Atlas Shrugged were far-fetched.

Saturday, September 01, 2018

Canada and NAFTA

For the record - I believe the Trump White House is 100% responsible for the leak of these comments.

As the President says in his Tweet, "At least Canada knows where I stand!" Notice he doesn't say "PM Trudeau" or "the Canadian delegation" or anything like that. He wanted all of Canada to understand where he stands. And as another US President once said, "Mission accomplished."

President Trump has offered a 100% free trade treaty but Canada insists on some protections for some of their politically connected industries. So Trump has instituted some protective US tariffs in return. What's good for the goose, etc., etc.

My guess is Trump "caves" to the media protection aspects (what does anyone outside the media care about those) but the dairy and lumber protections from the Canadian side are eliminated. That's a "huuge" win for the President. And this will probably happen before the mid-term elections.

And if it doesn't happen - then no big deal. Win-win.

Fake News

OK - this is real.

OK - this made me laugh.

OK - this is why the "Fake News" label isn't going away any time soon.

HT Instapundit

Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

Lawyers, Suns, and money... I keep waiting for those Joe Flacco and Andy Dalton "are in the best shape of their lives" stories to come out. Those are always the best indicators that the end is near... These pictures were probably released just so the Israelis would have "Before" photos for after they bomb the hell out of this place... "If the able and good withdraw themselves from Society [Government], the venal and ignorant will succeed." John Tyler in 1783 predicting the 2018 mid-term elections... 9 stats about the greatest hitter to ever live... I guess the MSM's role to afflict the comfortable and comfort the afflicted doesn't really apply when it comes to the Catholic Church pedophile abuse story... "I said lick my erection - not wreck my election" better be one of the lines of dialogue in this movie...

The Kardashian Conundrum

"The amount I care about the Kardashians cannot be measured in Planck lengths." - Chris Lynch

The above statement causes a conundrum. Those who like the Kardashians probably think, "Cool he's mentioning the Kardashians but is planking still a thing?"

Meanwhile, those who understand Planck lengths have probably never heard about the Kardashians.