Tuesday, April 30, 2013

60 Thoughts About Turning 60

I admit that I had never heard of Ian Martin - but his 60 thoughts on turning 60 were very clever.

My favorite two:

"When someone starts a sentence 'I'm not trying to be'... they always are." How very true. Just as true as "Nothing counts except what comes after the but." I think you are a great person but...

"[O]f course God exists. Even if God turns out to be just science in fancy pyjamas." What a great way of stating one's religious beliefs!

I also loved him calling someone a "human coelacanth." What a great turn of phrase!

The Great Gatsby and F Scott Fitzgerald

Interesting look into the life and finances of writer F Scott Fitzgerald.

His masterpiece The Great Gatsby (which is now a major motion picture - what a strange phrase that is - have you ever heard a movie described as a minor motion picture?) was published in 1925. According to Fitzgerald's notes and ledgers - he made $18,333.61 for that year. That would be roughly $250,000 in today's dollars.

Monday, April 29, 2013


I grew up Catholic and I have to confess that most of my time at mass was spent reviewing the Boston Red Sox roster in my head. First I would try to recall each player on the 25 and 40-man rosters. Then I would start thinking about if certain players at Pawtucket would be upgrades. This would get me to about the time the priest was giving his homily. At that point I was most likely starting to go through next year's free agent class and wondering which of those players would be a good fit in Boston.

When it was time for communion - I would stop thinking about the Red Sox roster and start thinking about which women in the receiving line I would like to have sex with (but that is a different confession).

I am thinking about starting to attend church again. I think it might help with my fantasy baseball skills.

Linky Links

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

- Heh heh - where the customer always comes first!

- When Clarence Thomas wrote to George Jones

- I want this painting for my place - JFKFC

- The human body truly is amazing. Why your nose gets stuffy one nostril at a time.

- George W. Bush saved more lives than any other President

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Jets QB Circus

The Jets spent another high draft pick on a QB - taking Geno Smith of West Virginia in the second round. The Jets now have six QB's on their roster - Smith, lame duck starter Mark Sanchez, Tim Tebow, David Garrard, Greg McElroy and Matt Sims. For a point of comparison - the Patriots roster has three QB's - Tom Brady, back-up Ryan Mallett and Mike Kafka from Northwestern.

Some want the Jets to cut Sanchez and take the $8 million plus cap hit. They argue that Geno Smith may be a raw rookie but at least he protects the football. These are the same people who neglect to mention that Tim Tebow is one of the best QB's in football at turnover ratios. I would also mention that every team in the NFL knew the Jets were going to take Smith in the second round and yet every team above them passed him over and no team behind them moved up to make sure they got him.

I will also add that Tebow was also much higher rated coming out of college. The Jets are a joke. And as a Patriots fan - I think the joke is pretty funny.

Friday, April 26, 2013

Linky Links

Stuff I found interesting and thought I'd share.

- Very cool - all five of Yu Darvish's pitches in one delivery

- If you use an off-shore betting account - this article is must reading.

- The "human computer" passes away

- Wow - Sperm whales battling Killer whales

- The Hubble Telescope's top 100 images

George W. Bush's Legacy

Charles Krauthammer has a good look at what the Bush legacy will and has been. Krauthammer makes the comparison to Harry Truman which I've also made repeatedly.

One thing to point out is that Truman was followed in office by Dwight Eisenhower while Bush was followed by Barack Obama. That is bound to work in Bush's favor once the celebrity ga-ga over Obama is replaced by real historians looking at facts.

Monday, April 22, 2013

Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

I am not a fan of the singing of Sweet Caroline at Red Sox games but my hat is off to Neil Diamond paying his own way to sing the song live at Fenway on Saturday... I completely understand why George H. W. Bush is smiling in this picture... Is it really necessary at this point for people who advertise lunch or buffets to add the words "all you can eat"?... Interesting - a map that shows there are only 22 countries in the world the Great Britain has not invaded or had a military presence in... I am not a person who feels driven to run marathons or any sort of endurance races so to me this race - the Barkley - seems insane... You can't have good without evil yet Christianity has official blessings but no official curses. That seems to be a missing ingredient... Not completely sure but I think doing this would get you tossed out of an establishment...

Wednesday, April 17, 2013


Two of the best writers from the Boston area also have two of the best explanations of what Monday means to people for whom Patriot's Day has been an important part of our fabric of life.

Jackie MacMullan's take.

Charlie Pierce's take.

I flew out of Logan on Tuesday morning and though the mood was somber - the flights were on time and things were somewhat back to normal. Which is a good thing. Maybe being in an airport made me think this but I can't help but believe that just like post 9/11 the whole plane full of passengers would rush anyone trying to take over a plane - next year the security at the Boston Marathon will be fine because the onlookers will make it so. Next year God help anyone carrying heavy backpacks who hesitate to answer when half-drunk Sully and Murph ask "Hey - what's in the bag?"

Sunday, April 14, 2013

The Masters

I love The Masters. In my book the final round of The Masters is maybe second only to Super Bowl Sunday as far as sporting Sunday's are concerned. I've actually been to Augusta twice for practice rounds. All that said - I'm not a serious golf fan (or golfer for that matter). Here's a few random Masters thoughts for your Sunday morning:

1. I'm fine with Tiger getting a 2-stroke penalty and being allowed to continue to play. I think people who are indignant that he didn't get DQ'd should get over themselves.

2. You know that Tiger will finish second just 1 or 2 strokes behind. That seems predetermined doesn't it?

3. Sometimes I have the sense of humor of a 12-year old boy. Exhibit A: Every time an announcer says "Tiger has never come from behind" my mind screams "Oh yes he has!"

4. Exhibit B: I found this really funny.

5. As far as I'm concerned - Tiger isn't even the biggest controversy at the Masters. The change in pimento cheese sandwich recipe is a much bigger deal. If you've been to Augusta one of the first questions someone will ask is "Did you have the pimento cheese sandwich?" This is like New Coke!

Saturday, April 13, 2013

David Lee Roth

Interesting profile of David Lee Roth. I admit that the article seems to take an overly rose-colored glasses look at Diamond Dave but it was entertaining.

I will also admit to holding a grudge against Van Halen. I saw them in high school at the height of their popularity and was pissed that they played for just 60 minutes. I felt ripped off and ever since then I automatically change the station whenever one of their songs come on the radio.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

I'm not impressed by the Red Sox so-called 794 game "sell-out" streak which ended last night. What is impressive is Pink Floyd's Dark Side of the Moon being on Billboard's top album list for 741 consecutive weeks... Beaver bites man to death. Thank God this wasn't - you know - a euphemism...  I disagree with the underlying sentiments but I have to admit I have new respect for Russell Brand's writing ability. His article on the death of Margaret Thatcher was strangely mesmerizing...  Dwight Evans has 331 more career hits and almost 300 more HR for the Red Sox than Wade Boggs but you never hear Dewey whining about him getting his number retired... I can't bypass the movie Goon without stopping to watch. Goon, Slapshot and Casablanca... Happy 41st birthday to former Red Sox captain Jason Varitek. My guess is even the most die-hard Yankee fans smile at this photo given the past couple of years...

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Linky Links

Stuff I found interesting and thought I'd share.

- Mariano Rivera is an awesome person.

- News you can use - why do people get emotional when they drink?

- Heh heh

- I would so pay to see this Calvin and Hobbes movie

- Excellent analysis of second tier QB shuffling in the NFL. Thank God New England has Tom Brady.

Wade Boggs

Wade Boggs wants the Red Sox to retire his number. The Red Sox won't do that for a very simple reason. It's not because Boggs went on to play for the Yankees. It's not because Boggs already had his number retired by Tampa Bay. It's because Wade Boggs is a douchebag.

Major league douchebag.

There's a good reason why his contemporary Don Mattingly is still actively involved in MLB while Boggs is lucky to be working with high school teams. There's a reason why Boston never has him back as a favorite prodigal son like Freddy Lynn. There's a reason why Roger Clemens invited tons of his old teammate to his 300th win game but did not invite Boggs.

The man compares himself to Ted Williams as a hitter and wants to be the next Johnny Pesky to the organization. The latter comparison is perhaps more insulting given the saint that was Johnny Pesky. The man wants his number retired while the Red Sox want to give it to scrubs.

The man is a douchebag.

Margaret Thatcher

I'd be remiss if I did not comment on the passing of Margaret Thatcher. Here were two of the better pieces I've seen on her passing.

This first piece describes how Thatcher became the "Iron Lady".

This second piece was written by someone who actively opposed Thatcher but who recognizes her great contribution to English life.

Rest in peace Maggie.

Sunday, April 07, 2013

Doug Kenney and Caddyshack

Very good Golf Digest article on Doug Kenney - the man maybe most responsible for the movie Caddyshack but a man mostly forgotten today.

It could be argued that Kenney's death at an early age was an even bigger cultural loss than that of John Belushi.

The article is nearly 10-years old but still holds up very well. Thanks to Paulie for reminding me of its existence.

Robert Parish and the NCAA

I was as big a Celtics fan in the mid 80's as you'd find anywhere but I wasn't aware of the story behind Robert Parish's college career at Centenary and how the NCAA screwed him over.

The story makes me respect Parish all the more for sticking out his commitment to Centenary and it also makes me dislike the NCAA all the more.

Saturday, April 06, 2013

Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

As others have pointed out if Rutgers ended up with Ben Howland instead of Mike Rice the men's basketball program will actually come out ahead in this mess. Come to think of it - anyone they hire will be an upgrade... The Beeriodic Table of Elements... Internet fact of the day - Alaska is so big that it could fit the State of New Jersey into it 75 times... I think it is unfair that Charlie Brown finally got to kick the football but Elmer Fudd never got to kill the wabbit... Many people have heard of Talk Like a Pirate Day but did you know that April 23rd is Talk Like Shakespeare Day?... I signed back up for HBO last Sunday so that I could watch Game of Thrones. I think Justified is the only other show on TV that I would pay money to watch... Prediction - the Patriots will acquire Tim Tebow for a 7th round draft pick and then trade backup QB Ryan Mallett for a 2nd round pick (making Tim Tebow Tom Brady's backup). The Jets will HATE dealing with New England but the 7th round pick will be better than releasing Tebow and getting nothing... Happy 42nd birthday to Framingham's own Lou Merloni...

Don King

Excellent article on Don King who was once one of the most powerful men in sports but is now all but forgotten.

When's the last time you thought about Don King? When's the last time you thought about boxing? I've become ambivalent about both. I always thought boxing was crooked - not so much what happened in the ring but outside - from the promoters like King keeping certain fights from happening to judges ringside giving scorecards which were indefensible to anyone who watched the same fight. Now I don't really think of boxing - or Don King - at all.

The article was a good reminder of what once was. I couldn't help but wonder if we are better off without boxing and people like Don King?

Monday, April 01, 2013

Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

I am so happy that Opening Day is finally here. Wicked excited... Coolest pool table ever!...  I have not seen the video of Kevin Ware's injury and God willing - I hope I never will... Yesterday I re-ordered HBO because I didn't want to miss the new season of Game of Thrones. I cancelled HBO when last season of GoT ended and will do so once again this year... Please don't get an erection! Please don't get an erection!... Jackie Bradley Jr. will be the youngest starting left fielder for the Red Sox since Yaz started in left back in 1961... Are the people in Atlanta really calling the Braves outfield, "Up, Up and a Hey"? That's pretty clever... Love language stuff like this - British words and phrases that don't translate for Americans and vice versa... Alec Baldwin has basically morphed into Leslie Neilsen at this point - hasn't he?... Metal Debris would be a good name for a band... A good reminder for a Monday morning, "If you don't know what your top three priorities are, you don't have priorities" - Donald Rumsfeld... I know one of my priorities for today is to watch the Red Sox / Yankees game...