Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Linky Links

Stuff I found interesting and thought I'd share.

- Mark Twain was born 176 years ago today. Here are 10 things he didn't really say

- Obama Legalizes Horse Slaughter for Human Consumption. I know that's a bit misleading but I didn't write it and it is ironic on so many levels. The PETA supporters can't claim Bush did this. Is Obama admitting the economy under him is so bad that people will have to eat horse? What's next - dog?

- World's Largest Marine Reserve Announced. Excellent photos. What's not mentioned is that George W created the second largest Marine Reserve around Hawaii.

- Must-Watch Music Video Featuring Stanley From The Office (aka Leslie David Baker)

- Alan Cumming Will Perform a One-Man Macbeth. I'd like to see that (although I'd probably picture him as Fegan Floop the whole time).

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

Hard to believe but of the four major pro teams in Boston - the Celtics are clearly in 4th place behind the Patriots, RedSox and Bruins. The lockout did hurt but now the question becomes how long will the damage last?.. Is there a way to make people spontaneously combust? I'm seriously thinking that would be the super power to have. Person bugs you past the point - boom - they burst into flame and you can get on with your day... It could be argued that if the media paid just a quarter of the attention to Fast and Furious that they did to Iran Contra that Obama would be out of office now... Risk = Hazard + Outrage - Interesting Freakonomics interview... Dimethyl-Meatloaf Emissions would be a great name for a band or a fantasy football team... Very interesting interview / retrospective of Terry Gilliam... One-Man Rebellion would be a good name for a Louis CK off-Broadway show - of course he'd call it One-Man Fucking Rebellion... Time Bandits is a very underrated movie - I feel conflicted about the idea of a remake... The Denver Broncos have been successful under Tim Tebow because they run the Hippocratic Offense - first do no harm... Little known fact - before the media started calling it Black Friday the day after Thanksgiving was known as Two Flush Friday (for obvious reasons).
George Harrison

Hard to believe that it s 10-years to the day since George Harrison passed away.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Linky Links

Stuff I found interesting and thought I'd share.

- Laurie Fine's nephew tells CNN that Bobby Davis "tampered with" tape released over the weekend. I have to admit that elsewhere I had mentioned that the Bobby Davis tapes were making me think of the movie Primary Colors.

- Funny because it's true. As a bonus - I bet the woman on the right likes bacon.

- Very interesting. So who is the real number two? Based on the evidence presented I did not pick Alabama.

- Tobey Macguire knows when to fold em. Pays $80k to settle out of poker lawsuit.

- The WKRP Turkey Drop Quiz

Friday, November 25, 2011

I'm Amazed

I'm Amazed by My Morning Jacket - one of those songs that is really good but has faded from memory just a bit.
Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

Not that QB rating is that great a stat but I find it interesting that Eagles QB Vince Young has career rating of 75.1 while the Broncos Tim Tebow has a 79.8 rating - yet some people insist Young is better. I've become a Tebow fan more because of the people rooting against him than for what he does on the field at this point... Van Morrison's I'm Not Feeling it Any More is one of his more under-appreciated songs... The Muses were the daughters of Zeus and Mnemosyne (Memory). They were born of Memory so their arts cause the soul to remember a higher plane of being. The Ancients seem to have had a better grasp of what the arts do then we moderns... New Company Policy: We are not hiring until Obama is gone... Quote for the Day: "The harder you work, the harder it is to surrender." - Vince Lombardi... Every time my doctor talks to me about ADHD I change the subject... Does Walking Through Doorways Cause Forgetfulness? Surprisingly the answer seems to be YES... Dave Attell and Jay Glazer should star in a remake of The Odd Couple except I'd have Dave be slob photographer who boozes too much while Jay is an over organized sports reporter with MMA friends. Just the guest stars you could bring in each week could make the show a success... Any time I see Newt Gingrich speak I always picture him as Santa's gay half-brother to see if it makes him any more likable... Who knew? Urban Meyer was drafted by the Atlanta Braves in 1982 and spent and couple years in their minor league system...

Thursday, November 24, 2011


This is a short film that hopefully puts you in the proper frame of mind for the day. Not just for Thanksgiving but for any in your life.
Happy Thanksgiving

The Sexy Pilgrim is silly but I love it. You're welcome!

Other great videos for Thanksgiving:

- As God as my witness - I thought turkeys could fly. Perhaps the funniest 6:44 in TV history.

- President Bartlet on the Butterball Hotline

When Gabe Kaplan was a kid – his older sister was embarrassed about becoming a young woman. She used to have the young Kaplan go into the drug store to buy her "sanitary napkins". Gabe was curious and asked his sister just what these things were.

“Oh, they’re special occasion napkins,” she would reply.

This explanation was enough for Kaplan and he didn’t give it another thought.

Then one Thanksgiving morning – young Gabe was left alone at home while his parents and older sister drove to the airport to pick up his uncle. Gabe was left with the job of setting the table for Thanksgiving. Then it occurred to him, “what could be more of a special occasion than Thanksgiving?”

Needless to say – his parents were confused, his sister was very embarrassed but his uncle couldn’t stop laughing when they came home and saw the creative way young Gabe had set the table for Thanksgiving.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Rev It Up

Jerry Harrison and the Casual Gods doing Rev It Up. Haven't heard this song in ages.
Linky Links

Stuff I found interesting that I thought I'd share.

- Would you like to taste the Most Interesting Man in the World's Jam? It is for a good cause.

- How to "blow" a turkey call.

- I'm not a motorcycle guy but I would consider buying one of these to get around town

- Interesting article on Teller from Penn and Teller. Too bad the video on the link no longer works.
Michael Barone is Wrong on Immigration

Normally I find Michael Barone to be insightful and intelligent in his political writings but I must take issue with his review of last night's GOP Debate.

I freely admit that I haven't studied the immigration issue as much as Barone but that makes me seeing the obvious flaws in his reasoning all the more striking. Barone in his article today has a myopia on immigration.
What infuriates me is that this is a debate over water that has already fallen over the dam. Romney mimicked immigration restrictionists’ arguments that in-state tuition and Selective-Service-type amnesty would be “magnets” for further illegal immigration, There’s a theoretical basis for this claim. But empirically illegal immigration has been dropping toward zero and reverse migration of illegals seems to be taking place: the Census Bureau estimates that the illegal population has declined from 12 million to 11 million, and it probably has declined more since.
A couple of points that Barone doesn't mention so I will.

1. Even if the illegal population has decreased to 10 million (as Barone suggests the trend would lead to) - that is still a very large number. If Obama somehow reduced the deficit from $15 trillion to $14 trillion would Barone suggest that the issue of the deficit is no longer important? Of course not.

2. The population of illegals does not exist in a vacuum. A population of 12 million illegals at a time when the country has a 5% unemployment rate is probably less of a problem than a illegal population of 10 million when the country has a 10% unemployment rate. Barone does not even touch that side of the equation. And please don't try to argue the jobs Americans won't do such as migrant farming angle. It is not the illegals doing tomato picking that has the impact - it is illegals taking carpenter, construction and other jobs that causes illegal immigration to be an important issue. When many in the workforce are facing major under-employment then the jobs as waiters and part-timers at Home Depot become jobs that Americans could really use.

3. At a time when state and local budgets are close to the breaking points - any money being spent on services to illegals is money that could be much better spent (or more importantly not spent) elsewhere.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

How to Fix Social Security

Not pretending this is a comprehensive fix for Social Security but everyone agrees it needs to be fixed so I am offering five easy steps to starting the process. I feel these five steps meet the criteria of being both fair and common-sense based.

1. Institute means testing. Warren Buffett says he wants to pay more taxes - OK let's start with his Social Security. When Social Security was instituted it was meant as a safety net for our nation's elderly. It was not meant to be a retirement account. As a safety net - it is an acceptable concept. As a retirement plan - it is a Ponzi scheme. I'd suggest a means test of say 10-times the poverty level - so a couple making over $220,000 would not be eligible for Social Security payments.

2. Raise the retirement age for people 45-years and under from 65 to 67. Realistic people are wondering if they will be able to retire at all. Given the changes in life-expectancy and financial realities - I don't think raising the age to 67 is asking too much.

3. Raise the retirement age for people 35-years and under from 65 to 70. Few people this age are even thinking retirement. Again - people this age will be enjoying benefits in medicine and technology 35-years from now that are probably unthinkable today.

4. Require any naturalized citizen to have paid into the Social Security system for a minimum of 10-years before being eligible for Social Security benefits.

5. Create Health Savings Accounts (HSA) where any un-used funds at the end of the year can be moved tax free into 401-K or IRA accounts. This would help with retirement planning for younger people and would would have many additonal benfits.

Anyway - that's my five easy steps towards helping to fix Social Security.
Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

If the Big East gets turned down by Boise State they should look to UMass. They already have pretty good hoops and are going to BCS level football. Plus they are actually in the East... Heh heh - science proves that some men maybe just can't help making promises to women they don't intend to keep in order to get a little something-something - it's in their nature or should I say it is Nature... How ironic would it be if Bobby Valentine took the Red Sox manager job and Terry Francona took the ESPN Sunday Night Baseball announcing job Bobby V would be leaving?... I can see how some people could go overboard with gold everything but I think these vans set up as traveling offices make tremendous sense. I would love to have one... At the beginning of Tim Tebow's FRS commercial he looks to be riding an escalator. What's up with that? Take the stairs you lazy bastard! You are supposed to be working out and setting an example... Interesting videos about Steve Jobs starting up NeXT. Like stepping into an IT world time machine... Who knew? According to Mental Floss: The Christmas classic "Do You Hear What I Hear?" was written in 1962 as a plea for peace during the Cuban Missile Crisis... Sneak peak look at season two of Game of Thrones... I don't have a problem with NASCAR fans booing Michele Obama. Americans hate phonies. Does anyone really think Michele Obama likes NASCAR racing or was she just using the big crowd and TV audience for a politically motivated photo opportunity? Doesn't get much more phony than that... The recently deceased billionaire Ted Forstmann supposedly paid for Columbia Law School with gambling proceeds. I think that's very cool. Think Matt Damon in Rounders if he stayed in school... Speaking of very cool - Satellite Photos Show Ancient Saharan Fortresses of a Lost Empire... Call me old school but I think baseball should be played without the DH and condoms should be made out of lamb's intestines - just like God intended.

Monday, November 21, 2011

One Flew Over the Thesaurus Nest

I loved the Ken Kesey novel One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest when I was in high school. So much better than the movie. So when I saw this review - retrospective for the upcoming 50th anniversary edition I was excited. Then I started reading the review - and I started to laugh at it (not with it). All I could think of was this Venn diagram:
But instead of an English teacher it was a guy writing for Vanity Fair trying to impress the reader with his vocabulary, world view and insight into the mind of Ken Kesey. Here's some examples:
...industrious output over a span of years that pyramids into an oeuvre...
...ingenious simplicity of Kesey’s narrative approach was to treat the page as a proscenium stage...
...Kesey’s sanitarium serves as a multiple microcosm for institutional society...
...To use a George Bushism, Nurse Ratched is the Decider...
...Kesey created a primal, cross-tribal bond between McMurphy and Chief Bromden—a towering Native American who pretends to be deaf and dumb and spends his days robotically sweeping the floor—that is James Fenimore Cooper’s Deerslayer and Chingachgook redux... the jolly roar at the banquet table in a Victorian romp when some chinless lord cracks a funny...
If nothing else the review made me chuckle and made me think about reading the book or seeing the movie again.

The Godfather - A Look Back

Fascinating article that looks back on the making of The Godfather. I consider myself a big Godfather fan but there was lots of interesting tidbits that I had never heard of. Pranks among the actors, how the real Mafia boycotted and then embraced the movie, lots of good stuff. The Luca Brasi stuff is great.

The article is a couple years old but it was new to me. HT Betsy's Page
Tim Tebow

Two points I'd like to make about Tim Tebow and how he really is responsible for Denver's success since he's taken over as the starting QB.

1. Tebow doesn't turn the ball over. He has just 1 turnover in the five games he's started. That is huge! You are not giving away free points to opponents or putting your defense in the position of having to defend a short field. That seems to be a factor that keeps getting over-looked. Many people want to give the Broncos defense the credit for the recent success rather than credit Tebow (praise be his name). It is much easier for the defense to be successful if the opponent always has 80-yards to drive to score and Tebow not turning the ball over is a big contributing factor to that.

2. Tebow's style of offense has to be wearing on the defense. I suggest that part of the reason Tebow can have that 4th quarter success is because he's worn the defense down during the first 3 quarters. It's harder to catch and tackle a fast big guy like Tebow if you are tired.

These were two points that I don't think have been getting enough if any mention.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

2012 NFL MVP

The other week I mused about if Tom Brady broke Dan Marino's single season passing record but Aaron Rogers led the Green Bay Packers to an undefeated season - which QB would win the MVP? There was a flaw in the question in that Aaron Rogers could both lead the Packers to an unblemished season AND break Marino's record. So Rogers seems to be the pick at this point.

The more I thought about it the more I started thinking of a baseball parallel that could come into play. You might think I would bring to mind Ted Williams and Joe DiMaggio the year Mister Coffee had a 56-game hitting streak and the Splendid Splinter hit .406. That 1941 season would be a good analogy since that was also a very contested MVP but the analogy I had in mind was actually from 2002.

That year Pedro Martinez was near unhittable but he ended up losing the AL Cy Young to Barry Zito largely because Zito had more starts than Pedro and that made a big difference to the voters. In 2002 Pedro went 20-4 with a 2.26 ERA in 30 starts while Zito went 23-5 with a 2.75 ERA in 35 starts. Pedro was much more dominating than Zito having 239 K's to Barry's 182 even though Zito pitched 30 more innings yet Zito won the award. The difference was Pedro took some starts off down the stretch because the Red Sox were out of it and that didn't sit well with some voters.

So what does that 2002 baseball season have to do with this year's NFL MVP? Well if Green Bay sews up the best record in the NFC there may be a strong push to rest him up for the playoffs. If his team loses a game, rests him, and Brady breaks Marino's record then those quarters on the bench may be the difference for Rogers between winning the MVP and losing it to Tom Brady.

This is in no way equating Tom Brady to Barry Zito. That would be like equating Barry Zito to Sandy Koufax. The situation from 2002 did strike me as relevant though.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

Great win by Iowa State last night! Too bad great the win was marred by the Cyclones playing Sweet Caroline to celebrate. I am so sick of that song... Don Orsillo recently re-signed with NESN with a contract that keeps him at the network until 2015. If Terry Francona takes a TV job that Orsillo turned down - you know Orsillo will never let Francona live it down (good natured ribbing between friends)... Congratulations to the Holy Cross Crusaders who destroyed Boston College last night 86-64... It can be argued that Barry Zito parlayed his only 20-win season into $146 million in career earnings. Could that make his 23-win 2002 season the most valuable 20-win season ever?... I agree with the irony that Shawn Ryan points out:
Joe Paterno's doctor notified JoePa immediately of his cancer diagnosis, so that any future damage might be avoided.
According to the Sports Tax Man - assuming Matt Kemp is a California resident - his new 8-year $160M deal will net him $86.4 million with the rest going to taxes. I am assuming that after realizing this Kemp will join the TEA (Taxed Enough Already) Party... Tim Tebow Just Wins is anagram for Must Join Web Twits... In early 1900's there was famous Asian prostitute in Chicago named Suzy Poon Tang whose name became slang for - well you know...
Linky Links

Stuff I found interesting and thought I'd share.

- Physics isn't settled science but climatology computer models are? Real science is never 'settled'. I've made this very same point.

- 12 Brilliant Old Political Campaign Slogans

- Ron Paul Bad Lip Reading

- How Delonte West's Mental Illness Affected LeBron's Final Year In Cleveland, And Why You Never Heard About It. This ia actually pretty scary stuff.

- Interesting look at Anheuser-Busch three years after InBev deal
George C Scott Tries to Watch Adam Sandler's Jack and Jill

This 2 and a half minutes may be the best thing to result from this awful movie.

HT Ken Levine

Thursday, November 17, 2011


Edward Sharpe and The Magnetic Zeros - Home. Great song!
Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

Clayton Kershaw of the Dodgers, who won the NL Cy Young today, was the 7th pick of the 2006 MLB draft. The Tigers took Andrew Miller who had 5.54 ERA for Red Sox this year with the 6th pick... I still say that NCAA should give a blanket waiver exemption to any Penn State athlete who wants to transfer. Players should not have to sit out a year in order to get out of that situation... I had one of these mats once but if it was like this one I'd still be playing with it (probably NSFW)... Interesting point by Doyle Brunson - 100 years ago the population of Las Vegas was just 30 people. Amazing what can happen in a century... If the Tigers took Kershaw with that 6th pick instead of Andrew Miller in the 2006 draft would they be World Series champs today? Justin Verlander and Kershaw would be very tough to beat... John Amaechi on Joe Paterno: “You can’t be a part-time man of principle”. Amaechi perhaps the most eloquent athlete I can recall... I'm going to invent a version of Spanish Fly but for women. I'm going to call it Spanish Spider... I think the Red Sox should make a trade offer of 1st baseman Lars Anderson and outfielder Josh Reddick to the Dodgers for Andre Ethier who is free agent after 2012 season. I think that would be a win-win for both teams... Awesome photography... I'm still ticked that Andre the Giant wasn't even nominated for Best Supporting Actor for his work in The Princess Bride... Next time I'm in Las Vegas I'm going to put some coin on a prop bet that Jonathan Papelbon will lead the NL in saves for 2012. That seems like a lock to me.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Red Sox Medical Staff

The Red Sox health and healthcare has been a problem for a few years and now the team is making changes. Including eliminating the position of medical director Dr. Thomas Gill.
As part of the restructuring, team sources said, the Red Sox will eliminate the position of medical director, which Gill has held since 2005. But they would retain the services of Massachusetts General Hospital Sports Medicine Group, which Gill directs.

Gill could be involved in medical care to some degree. But a different doctor from MGH would be the head team physician.

The Red Sox have had a number of issues related to medical care in the last two seasons.

Jacoby Ellsbury and Clay Buchholz are among the players who were originally said to have minor injuries that proved to be major when they were examined by outside physicians.
This is a big deal as it can be argued that poor healthcare and misdiagnosis may have been a primary reason for the team missing the playoffs these past two years. Something I've been saying for a while but have not seen discussed anywhere else until today when the team acted on the problem.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

Who knew? According to Myth Busters Astronauts can't belch normally in space. Without gravity, belching brings up liquid as well as gas... Supposedly there will be a Doctor Who movie not tied to the TV series that will be done by the folks who did the Harry Potter movies... Quote for the Day: "Laws should be like clothes. They should fit the people they are meant to serve." Clarence Darrow... JoJo White is perhaps the most underrated player in NBA history... I haven't been paying attention but has David Letterman been making any Herman Cain sexual harrassment jokes?... When someone says "You look familiar - were we in a police lineup together?" What's the proper response?... Doesn't Antonio Bastardo have to give up his number 58 to Jonathan Paplebon? Would he be a bastard if he doesn't?... Political Quote of the Day: “My brain is like a chicken pot pie,” real quote from Rick Perry from 1994. Could explain a lot actually...

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Saturday, November 12, 2011


WGN News anchors Robert Jordan and Jackie Bange during a commercial break. Pure awesomesauce!
Jonathan Papelbon

Jonathan Papelbon has signed with the Phillies pending a physical. The deal is reported to be 4-years for $50 million with a vesting 5th option year that would be for another $13 million.

I wish Jonathan Papelbon nothing but the best. I'm guessing most Red Sox fans feel the same way. Papelbon had 219 saves for the Red Sox to go along with a career 2.33 ERA. Papelbon gave his best every time he took the mound and he always took the mound - never injured or begging off. That didn't go unnoticed by the fans.

Papelbon made no secret of what he wanted to accomplish regarding his contract. When he was under team control he publicly said he wanted to get the highest arbitration award amount ever for a closer. He publicly spurned the idea of a long-term deal because he wanted to set the record contract amount for a free-agent closer as well. Which now he has. Papelbon signing elsewhere for a mega-deal was easily predicted by anyone paying attention.

The Red Sox paid Papelbon $12 million this year and I'm guessing they didn't have any issue with that given the fine season Papelbon gave back in return (4-1 2.94 ERA with 31 saves). It was the 5-years that I'm guessing gave the Red Sox pause. The unwritten baseball 11th Commandment is "Thou shall not give a pitcher a 5-year deal." There's good reason for that. The problem I see is the fact that Papelbon's career numbers through his first 7 seasons are scarily similar to Mariano Rivera's first 7 seasons. Would you hesitate to give a 31-year old Mariano Rivera a 5-year deal?

It is easy to argue that any comparison to Mo Rivera is unfair because Rivera is one of a kind. But the same can easily be said of Jonathan Papelbon. He's much closer to Rivera in fact than to guys like Frankie Rodriguez or Joe Nathan. Having said that - Papelbon and his 8 blown saves were a big reason the Red Sox did not make the playoffs in 2010 and I don't think you can lay a claim like that at the feet of Mariano Rivera for any of his 17 seasons.

In the end I predict that the Red Sox will move on from Papelbon with some success and some failure. Papelbon will probably finish his career with 300+ saves and a World Series ring with both the Red Sox and Phillies. His case for the Hall of Fame when he retires will be very strong. I also predict that after Papelbon retires that he'll miraculously find the ball from the final out of the 2007 World Series that supposedly his dog ate.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Linky Links

Stuff I found interesting and thought I'd share.

- Edited time lapse of USS Carl Vinson's flight deck being readied for tonight's basketball game

- Interesting Malcolm Gladwell article on Steve Jobs

- The science behind why we kiss. Alfred Kinsey reported some women could reach orgasm from prolonged deep kissing without genital contact - it's called Chris Lynch Effect

- Some context on the Wilson Ramos kidnapping story: An American talks about his experiences playing in Venezuela

- Improv Everywhere is Awesome!

- The history of the beer growler. The Growler would be a great name for a WWE wrestler. He would be an angry drunk guy - look out it's the Growler!

- Excellent piece on the origins of tonight's UNC-MSU game aboard USS Carl Vinson
The Eleventh Hour of the Eleventh Day of the Eleventh Month

In 1918 at the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month the most bloody war in the history of mankind came to an end. The "official" paperwork would later be signed a few months later at Versailles but this "armistice" on November 11th is widely regarded as the end of the war.

Twenty years later Congress made Armistice Day an official national holiday. By 1954 the holiday's name was changed to Veteran's Day because the promise that World War I would be the "war to end all wars" proved to be false.

It should be noted that the armistice signed this day 93-years ago was signed in a railroad carriage at Compiagne, France. This place was chosen because it was where the Germans had previously dictated surrender terms to France to end the Franco-Prussian War in 1871. Many people fail to remember how that earlier war in 1871 sparked the war in 1914.

The onerous terms placed on Germany in the Treaty of Versailles are credited with helping the rise of the Nazi Party in Germany and with putting in motion the events that led to World War II. And the roots of the Korean War and the Vietnam War can be traced to the end of World War II.

It should further be noted that much of underlying structure and strife in the Middle East can be traced back to the end of World War I as most of the modern boundaries of the Middle East emerged from the end of the war including the boundaries of modern Iraq.

In many ways we are still feeling the ripples from the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month of 1918. Too bad too few remember.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

Not for nothing but I'm surprised that the Penn State students didn't go to Jerry Sandusky's house if they wanted to have a proper riot... 80% of U.S. millionaires are the 1st generation of their family to be rich. They earned it. They are the real 1%... Jim Cramer turned into a big bag of quivering mush when brow-beat by Jon Stewart on the Daily Show but now sees fit to yell questions at Republican candidates? Absolutely no respect for Jim Cramer - he's a clown... Very cool view of the Northern Lights over Norway... Mitt Romney's "away game" line last night was great but was that him saying he plays for the other team? NTTAWWT - was he making a play for Log Cabin Republicans? (Just kidding)... One thing the NCAA can do is give Penn State football players blanket waivers to transfer to any school without sitting out a year. Players are perhaps only innocents here... Wow - just wow!... I would like to see Donny Osmond sing the Trololo song. I think that would be comedy gold... Still amazing to me that Brian Urlacher was a safety in college... He's a question (not really a serious question) but Bill Clinton contends that oral sex does not count as sex and if that is so - how can Herman Cain asking for oral sex (allegedly) be sexual harassment?

Wednesday, November 09, 2011

Drivelapse USA - 5 Minute Roadtrip Timelapse Around America

Very cool timelapse video from Syracuse native Brian DeFrees. I'd love to take a trip like this some day. The music is from the band Waking Lights. Go to the YouTube page and watch full-screen to get full effect.

Tuesday, November 08, 2011

Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

Tom Brady, Drew Brees and Aaron Rogers are all still on pace to break Dan Marino's single season passing mark of 5,084 yards. Brady is on pace for just over 5,400 yards... Here's some hope for Baltimore Orioles fans - in Dan Duquette's first draft with the Red Sox he took Nomar Garciaparra and Carl Pavano who he used to trade for Pedro Martinez... Emmitt Smith is the all-time rushing leader and Brett Favre is the all-time passing leader but does anyone think they were best RB or QB in NFL history?... If I was to write a Wade Boggs biography I would title it Strangled on the Toilet - just because I don't like Boggs... I'm going to use the word "feisty" to describe random objects this week. This potato chip is feisty! What a feisty gas pump! What a feisty idea!... Teddy Roosevelt thought Thomas Jefferson didn't deserve credit for the Louisiana Purchase. Roosevelt argued that US settlers moving into the territory would have forced the matter anyway. It was far cheaper for France to sell us the "rights" to the land than defend it militarily. Besides fighting the French would have forced the US into an alliance with England which France also could not afford... People forget that in addition to drafting Nomar, Kevin Youkilis, Freddy Sanchez and others for the Red Sox - Dan Duquette also saw fit to draft people like Mark Teixeira, Pat Burrell and Aaron Harang but was unable to sign them. Can you imagine if the Red Sox had Mark Teixeira all those years?... I like the Mitt Romney idea of asking "Is this program so critical that it is worth borrowing money to pay for it?" before spending any federal funds on a program. That's the right mindset...

Monday, November 07, 2011

Sunday, November 06, 2011

Jerry Sandusky
Flay - verb; to to strip off the skin especially by whipping or by knife

Jerry Sandusky deserves to be flayed. Seriously. When people ask me why I support the death penalty - I will point to people like Jerry Sandusky. He really does not deserve to live.

Speaking of the death penalty - it will be interesting to see what the people who were calling for the NCAA "death penalty" for the University of Miami in the wake of the Nevin Shapiro allegations of wrong-doing have to say about Penn State. What the Penn State football program enabled for years and years is magnitudes of evil worse than anything Nevin Shapiro may have done. Not even close. How can anyone possibly root for Penn State football after this?

Woody Hayes was a great coach but for generations he is known only as the old coach who was fired for punching an opposing player. Joe Paterno is the winningest coach in college football history but now his legacy will be that he fostered a monster in his program. If Paterno knew even the smallest details about Sandusky - then he deserves for that to be his legacy.

Saturday, November 05, 2011

Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

Drew Brees, Aaron Rogers and Tom Brady are all still on pace to break Dan Marino's single season passing mark of 5,084 yards... On this date in 1955, Doc Brown hit his head on the edge of his sink and invented time travel... What type of person gives out pretzels for Halloween?... Happy 59th birthday to basketball original and all-time great Bill Walton... Two women in a canoe happen upon a murmation of starlings... I think part of reason Phil Simms criticized Andrew Luck has to do with Simms' inability to grow a beard... Just want to mention that I was perhaps the first to call Dan Duquette getting interviewed by the Baltimore Orioles. He just may be the most qualified person who actually wants the job... Happy 38th birthday to Johnny Damon. He is just 277 hits away from 3,000 for his career. If he gets to that mark it will be interesting to see if it is enough to get him into the Hall of Fame... I have never seen Back to the Future II or III for that matter. I have no desire whatsoever to do so...

Thursday, November 03, 2011

Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

Happy 60th birthday to Dwight Evans. The 8-time Gold Glove winning Dewey should have gotten much more Hall of Fame consideration then he got... Promising Assistant GM's want nothing to do with the Orioles - that's why it could be opportunity for someone like Dan Duquette who once was a big deal but now has trouble even getting interviews... Best part about the front page update is the disclaimer... So was real reason Herman Cain chief of staff Mark Block was smoking that cigarette in that commercial post coital related?... Today would have been Charles Bronson's 90th birthday. In his dreams Chuck Norris wishes he'd be as badass as Charles Bronson... Big Adrian Gonzalez fan and big Red Sox fan but Miguel Cabrera of the Tigers should have won Silver Slugger for 1st base... Awesome beer map... On this day in 1913 the US introduced the income tax. A day that will live in infamy... Yesterday was Palindrome Day (11/02/2011) and I just wanted to note that best palindrome ever is "Lisa Bonet ate no basil"... 10 Retro Illustrations of Pop Culture Icons... Today is Michael Dukakis' 78th birthday. Funny how you never hear anyone wistfully thinking of how great a Dukakis Presidency would have been.

Wednesday, November 02, 2011

The Beginning of the End for the NCAA

Charlie Piece is verbose - but he is right. The NCAA is on a slippery slope to having to pay athletes. The NCAA is suggesting a $2,000 stipend for athletes. I think the answer at some point will be to pay college athletes minimum wage "work/study" for revenue generating sports (even if the end result is a net loss for the sport).

Using simple math and a minimum wage rate of $7.25 per hour then that works out to roughly 17 hours per week for 16 weeks of football. Does anyone think that is enough hours? Remember - you would also be paying for travel. Let's call it 25 hours per week - OK? That works out to a $2,900 stipend. But what if that student goes to school in California who has and $8 per hour minimum wage? Then suddenly that student-athlete is getting a $3,200 stipend. Advantage USC and suddenly there a reason to go to UCLA again. Good luck to Minnesota and their freezing winters and $6.15 per hour minimum wage.

Slippery slope indeed. And we haven't even broached the idea that there is no reason this income is not taxable.
Chris Herren

Last night I watched the powerful 30 for 30 documentary Unguarded about Chris Herren and his struggle with drug addiction. Perhaps the most emotionally raw moment was when Herren described when he decided that everyone would be better off if he just killed himself. Out of nowhere a woman tapped Herren on the shoulder told him that she knew his mother and was going to get him help. That woman who is not named in the film saved Herren's life. The intersection of basketball and drugs in the film made me think of Jim Carroll's Basketball Diaries.

I haven't read Chris Herren's book but I have added it to my Amazon Wish List.

I keep thinking that if that woman didn't tap Chris Herren on the shoulder when he was thinking of killed himself that he would have become just another person who died. Except without a guy like Jim Carroll to name him in a song for posterity.

Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

I was not aware that Sears had a policy of supporting their employees on active duty this way. This holiday season I will be sure to shop at Sears and their policy will be the reason... Jonathan Hock who directed the Chris Herren 30 for 30 biopic Unguarded also wrote the 30 for 30 episode The Best That Never Was on Marcus Dupree. Both films were very powerful... In case you missed it - Colin Quinn has been taking shots at Will Farrell on Twitter saying among other things that Farrell stole the premise for the movie Anchorman from Quinn... Speaking of supporting the troops... Who knew? Teddy Roosevelt thought Thomas Jefferson was most incompetent chief executive in US History. Worse than Buchanan even... Today would have been Daniel Boone's 277th birthday. He not only killed a Grizzly bear with his bare hands - he once swam to the North pole and drown two polar bears... Congratulations to Dustin Pedroia, Adrian Gonzalez and Jacoby Ellsbury for winning Gold Gloves. All well deserved and worthy choices...