Saturday, December 31, 2011

Neil Gaiman's New Year Wish

Very cool. I agree with the sentiments 100% but never would have been able to craft such a great message.

Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

Bill Belichick is 9-2 ATS in season finales as head coach of the Patriots with 9 of those games going over the total. This is even more impressive when you realize the Patriots may not have been really trying to win that Doug Flutie drop-kick game against the Dolphins in 2005 (because a loss allowed them to play the Jaguars instead of the Steelers in the first round)... Heh heh - Occupy Wall Street Lego version - "Occupy my nightstick!"... Did not realize this - Michael Gambon who is best known for playing Dumbledore in the Harry Potter movies also played Mafia boss Don Faranzano in the 1991 movie Mobsters starring Christian Slater... Here's an idea for a new TV channel - ESP-N - the Extra Sensory Perception Network. You could have psychics making sports picks and predictions for upcoming sporting events...  100 incredible pictures taken from airplanes... Who knew? All ten of the most commonly used verbs in English are irregular verbs... Put on the meat ponchos! Like tasty gravy to a hungry wolf! Two phrases that definitely should be used by NHL announcers for goal scoring plays... Very cool insect photographs... The other day I seriously had the voice of Burgess Merideth as Rocky's trainer Mickey saying, "Newt Gingrich craps bigger than Ron Paul" stuck in my head. Seriously... Neat quiz. Who said it: Jack Kennedy or Jack Donaghy? I went 9 for 9.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Ron Paul surge is bigger trouble for Barack Obama than Mitt Romney

I agree with the sentiment behind this post. If Ron Paul ran as a third party candidate - he'd take more votes away from Barack Obama than from Mitt Romney. The Occupy Wall Street, the anti-war crowd and those generally disappointed that Hope and Change resulted in more of the same would find a voice for their protests in Ron Paul. Those people make up some of the very base Obama has been pandering to.

The Republican base and the Independents worried about the economy aren't going to forsake Mitt Romney for Ron Paul. Giving up the fringe to get the center is a very good trade for the presumptive Republican nominee.

A third party run by former New Mexico Governor Gary Johnson would also hurt Obama much more than Romney. Johnson on the ballot would attract people whose main issues are the environment or legalizing drugs. Correct me if I'm wrong but I think those people voted for Hope and Change the last time around.

Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

I am a big fan of Josh Reddick. I thought he was going to be the starting RF in 2012 for the Red Sox. I also think his late season drop-off probably had a lot do do with his injured wrist. Having said that -  really like the trade for Andrew Bailey. He becomes the closer and lets Daniel Bard become a starter. The one thing I'm not so hot on is the idea of Bailey keeping number 40 on his uniform. The last closer to wear that number for the Red Sox was Calvin Schiraldi. Bad juju... Who knew? According to Mental Floss "Barry Manilow's hit 'I Write the Songs' was not written by Barry Manilow"... The Boston Celtics have lost 3 games in less than a week. You would have to go back to October to find 3 losses for the Boston Bruins... Just saying but if I owned a zoo - I would make money on the side doing body disposal Mr. Wu on Deadwood style. Good thing I don't own a zoo... This is an interesting nugget via Sports by Brooks, "Keep in mind, [Mike] Leach was only coach in America who offered Adam James a scholarship, at Craig's behest. SMU wouldn't"... Is it possible that Rex Ryan is actually a worse coach than Herm Edwards? When Edwards was done in NYC he at least was able to get another HC job with the Chiefs. When Ryan is eventually fired by the Jets do you think another team will take on his baggage? Even asking the question comparing him to Edwards is an indictment on Ryan... If Drew Brees broke the passing record before Christmas he might have been able to sell a ton of Isotoner gloves... My daughter makes an awesome drink she calles a Ferrero Rocher. It's half Hazelnut coffee and half hot chocolate.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

A Drunken Afternoon with Anthony Bourdain

Very interesting profile of Anthony Bourdain.

I started watching No Reservations about a year or so ago and have become a big fan. Tony just seems like a guy you'd want to have some beers or a meal with. This piece seems to catch the essence of the man you see on TV.

Corn Ethanol Subsidy to Expire

Congress ends corn ethanol subsidy

Good news. This was one of the biggest boondoggles in US history. People are upset at wastes of money like the Solyndra "investment" - and rightly so - but the ethanol subsidy with the dollar amounts involved and the willing suspension of belief for political gain dwarfs the green money grab.

Also interesting that this public good was accomplished not by Congress being proactive and fixing a wrong but by Congress being inactive and just letting the subsidy to expire.

Mike Tyson Quotes: The Song

This is awesome!

Linky Links

Stuff I found interesting and thought I'd share.

Don Cherry's piano desk is awesome. I absolutely loved this.
The scale of Saturn. I love these items which give real-world examples of the scale of things.
Congressmen keep getting richer in a bad economy. Where's the outrage? Where's the legislation to prevent abuse of public trust for personal gain?
Time to trade Kevin Youkilis? Now that the Red Sox traded Jed Lowrie - I see this as very unlikely. If they do trade Youkilis for prospects - then it will be a cost cutting move designed to get the team under the luxury cap.
China moved ahead of Japan and Brazil passed the UK in terms of GDP in 2011. We live in a rapidly changing world.
Speaking of living in a rapidly changing world - here's a one ton 5MB hard drive from 1956. Today that amount of storage would fit in your pocket on a thumb drive.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Mitt Romney at Harvard

Interesting look at Mitt Romney's time at Harvard.

Problem solving was his specialty. Sounds like something that would be important given the problems we are having.

Mark Sanchez by the Numbers

Is Mark Sanchez a good QB? I have to say no and the numbers agree with me.

In QB rating - Sanchez is 22nd in the NFL with a 79.5 rating - just below Tarvaris Jackson.
In passing yards he's 15th in the NFL but when it comes to yards per game he's a miserable 24th.
Sanchez is a respectable 8th in TD's passes but he's also 7th in interceptions.
In the other bad things category - Sanchez is tied for 5th in sacks, 6th in fumbles and 1st in fumbles lost.

Those numbers just don't add up to equal a winning equation. As a Patriots fan - I hope they stick with Sanchez. Them getting a Kellen Moore in the mid rounds of the draft and him becoming their Tom Brady is what I'd fear. But the way the team is managed my guess the only way something like that happens would be by accident.

Live from New York

Over the weekend I devoured the book Live From New York: An Uncensored History of Saturday Night Live, as Told By Its Stars, Writers and Guests. If you are a fan of SNL - I highly, highly recommend the book. I knew this before but the book cemented the notion that Lorne Michaels is a genius and the show never would have survived or prospered without him. Those that say otherwise are just jealous. Some nuggets gleaned from the book include the fact that Billy Crystal was supposed to be part of the original cast, Janeane Garofalo was a miserable self-entitled succubus on the show (all her excuses for her failure on the show were rendered moot by Tina Fey's success in almost the same circumstances - oh and Chevy Chase was a jerk.

For what it's worth - here are my Top 10 SNL Cast Members:

1. Eddie Murphy - I will not argue this
2. Dan Aykroyd - I give him the nod over Belushi just for longevity
3. John Belushi
4. Gilda Radner - people are forgetting how awesome she was
5. Phil Hartman
6. Bill Murray
7. Mike Myers
8. Chris Farley
9. Will Ferrell
10. (tie) Jimmy Fallon, Adam Sandler and Tina Fey

You could actually change the order of pretty much everybody after Eddie Murphy and I wouldn't complain too much.

Monday, December 26, 2011

Day After Christmas Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations on the day after Christmas.

Happy birthday to Hall of Famer Carlton Fisk... Have you seen those Subway ads where the hot girls will be your "girlfriend" in exchange for a sandwich? I'd like to work there. Sandwich whores sure are a hell of a lot cheaper than coke whores... You never see lumps of sugar anymore. When did lumps of sugar fade into history? Now you just have packets of sugar. You would think the eco-freaks would go after this change... I like to think that the NAPA-know-how commercials are about how to give oral to African-American women because otherwise it is just two guys serenading each other about auto parts which is twice as weird and not in a good way... OK - I'll say it! The Patriots have 3 QB's on their roster who are probably better than Mark Sanchez. Tom Brady obviously is better but Brian Hoyer and Ryan Mallett are probably better too... Do Italian children write Dear Sinatra letters the way others write Dear Santa letters?... Norv Turner would have had this Jets team in the playoffs...

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations. Faithful Republican / Unfaithful Husband "endorsement" of Newt Gingrich was genius. The billboard in Pennsylvania probably cost a few thousand dollars but they are easily getting ten-times that in free exposure... Excellent parody of the David Bowie / Bing Crosby Little Drummer Boy holiday classic... I am glad that the Red Sox did not trade for Gio Gonzalez because he would have cost too much in terms of prospects. I would much rather see the Red Sox commit to making Daniel Bard a starter... Drew Brees cannot get through the gate. The gate is narrow. Also Drew Brees drives a gay parade float... The 50 Funniest Headlines of 2011... "I would like - to feed your fingertips - to the wolverines"... Is it me or have the Boston Celtics draft results from the past several years been awful?... If they made a Broadway play based upon the campaign of Newt Gingrich - the lead could be played by Bernadette Peters... Did I miss the Def Leopard Christmas Special? Damn every year I miss that... I absolutely love this idea:
@StevanRidley - Double Stuffed Oreos should be called Oreos, and regular Oreos should be called Diet Oreos..

Friday, December 23, 2011

Linky Links

Stuff I found interesting and thought I'd share.

A 2011 Quiz. I got 12 out of 14 but honestly a couple were guesses.
15 of the Greatest Gifts in the History of Presents. It should be noted that France originally was going to give the Statue of Liberty to Egypt. It would have had a veil and have been named something else.
Tom Brady is having one of the greatest seasons in history (that nobody will notice). I really like the comparison to the year Oscar Robinson averaged a triple-double and still finished 3rd in the MVP voting.
Bush 41 backs Mitt Romney for President. Also not a fan of Newt Gingrich.
Dayne Crist reunites with Charlie Weiss at Kansas for a season of NFL preparation.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Joe Strummer

It's been 9 years to the day since the passing of Joe Strummer. Straight to Hell is one of my favorite Clash songs and this is a pretty solid version.

Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

I'm a little torn in my AFC West rooting now. I like how Tim Tebow drives some people crazy but I also want Romeo Crennel to succeed so he wins the head coaching job in Kansas City... Boston Celtics doctors can detect Jeff Green's thoracic aortic aneurysm but somehow they completely missed Delonte West and his mental illness... 19 Outstanding Words You Should Be Working Into Conversation... Right now Daisuke Matsuzaka has cost the Red Sox $1.9 million per win. By the end of 2012 John Lackey will have also cost the Red Sox $1.9 million per win... Phil Martelli was great in Young Frankenstein... Christopher Hitchens famously debunked the saying "Whatever doesn't kill you makes you stronger" in his last column but I have to wonder what he'd have to write about the saying "No pain no gain"?... Speaking of Hitch - I knew Christopher Hitchens better than you... I'm hoping Norv Turner comes out and says that if he had a team as talented as the Jets then he'd have a playoff spot tied up by now. And speaking of the Jets - I agree with the sentiment that if you switched the QB's from the Jets and Giants then the team with Eli Manning would win by 2 TD's... If the government sold its remaining GM stock today taxpayers would lose about $16.5 billion...Who knew? There are more McDonald's in the US then Wendy's, Burger Kings and White Castles combined... Most rational leaders gave thanks at the news of the death of Kim Jong Il but Jimmy Carter sends condolences. He is truly a craven person...

Monday, December 19, 2011

Charlie Pierce Attacks Tim Tebow's Faith to Make Charlie Feel Good About Himself

Charlie Pierce has an attack piece on Tim Tebow up at Grantland. The piece has almost nothing to do with sports. The piece has everything with Charlie Pierce's need to portray himself as some sort of morally superior person.

I must say that a certain amount of cowardice is involved here in waiting till Tim Tebow lost to go after his religious beliefs. Charlie Pierce comes off like the Edward G. Robinson character Dathan in The Ten Commandments shouting, "where is your God now?" It was also most unseemly to invoke Christopher Hitchens in this piece because of that. Hitch would never have waited till a loss to say what he thought had to be said - but Charlie Pierce waited. Yet still the cool kids will call him brave for doing it.

Pierce criticizes Tebow's brand of Christianity. He says that this "particular splinter has a long record in America of fostering anti-Enlightenment thought." If I was to go after Enlightenment thought the way Charlie Pierce goes after Tebow's faith then you would read a screed about Guillotine's and the French Revolution which with all its bloodletting was the most tangible outcome of the Enlightenment. The most tangible outcome of Tebow's ministries in the Philippines will probably be a new hospital.

I happen to agree with Teddy Roosevelt who was not keen on those who worked to convert others to their religions. He didn't like it because first the proselytizer would have to destroy the person's existing beliefs to get them to accept the new beliefs. Pierce makes the argument that's what Tebow and his family are doing in the Philippines which - as Pierce points out - is already 95% Catholic. I wonder if the Jesuit educated Pierce would like to extol the methods used by the Catholic Church in gaining such a plurality. Of course Pierce won't do that but at the same time he won't ruin his straw man argument either.

When you get right down to it this is article by Pierce is just another case of a person trying to drag down - nay smear - another just to try to feel better about themselves.

Linky Links

Stuff I found interesting and thought I'd share.
OK - we'll trade you our Smallpox for your Syphilis - deal?
Phil Martelli comes off as such a jerk here.  Unless the guy got his daughter pregnant - Martelli is clearly in the wrong.
Bad Lip Reading - Newt Gingrich. What's up with the fruit panties - you hating on me?
Christopher Hitchens on the Death Penalty
Heywood Jablome's brother?
I posted this link before but it's worth another look. A game preserve in India where the rangers shoot to kill poachers

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

Will the Westboro Baptist Church be protesting at the funeral of Christopher Hitchens? In a perverse way I think he'd like that... 18 Fun Facts About Your Favorite Christmas TV Specials... Is it too late for Jon Huntsman to run for President as a Democrat? I think he could win the nomination from Obama. Almost everyone I hear who supports Huntsman is a Democrat who have no intentions for voting for a Republican. Maybe if Huntsman officially switched parties he could gather their votes... I still say Meat Raffle would be a good name for a band... I wonder who actually did more real good in the 1990's - the Community Organizers like Barack Obama or the Guardian Angels? Seriously... There was a TV series in 1983 called Casablanca that starred David Soul and was supposed to be a prequel to the Bogart movie. I would like to watch that.... Now that Kobe is getting divorced - the Lakers should go right ahead and officially make him player/coach just like what the Celtics did with Bill Russell. If Kobe wasn't listening to his wife - who really thinks he'll be listening to Mike Brown?... I am still absolutely flummoxed that such a thing as the Beef O Brady Bowl actually exists. That is not what our Founding Fathers had in mind... If I ran a minor league baseball team I would have put in a bid on Yu Darvish just for the press release value.

Linky Links

Stuff I found interesting and thought I'd share.
Jesus Visits Tim Tebow on SNL: "Take It Down a Notch"
50 of the Funniest Tweets of 2011
Craig James for Senate. Too late. Too poor. Too inexperienced. I still hope he runs just for the ridicule and for ESPN to take the opportunity to replace him for good
This gets me every single time. The West Wing - In Excelsis Deo
Beautiful tribute to Christopher Hitchens
Does Vodka really kill bees and wasps?
A very handy table for all 70 bowl coaches with their ATS records
50 Amazing Pieces of Louis CK Fan Art
"These Filthy-Minded Grandmothers Would Like to Sell You Molasses"

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Chuck Klosterman, Blind Faith and Tim Tebow

I've been meaning to comment on this piece on Tim Tebow by Chuck Klosterman for some time. I think the idea of asking "What if Tim Tebow was a bad person?" is a good premise for an article. Comparing people who are Christians to people who believe a certain guy is a murderer? That's not clever - it's actually insulting to Christians if you stop to think about it. But that's the problem at Grantland - nobody stops to think about anything. It is not the oozing condescension that made this article memorable for me. It was the insertion of politics into a non-political "sports" article:
Throughout the 20th century, there were only two presidents who won reelection with a bad economy and high unemployment: FDR in 1936 and Reagan in 1984. In both cases, the incumbent presidents were able to argue that their preexisting plans for jump-starting the economy were better than the hypothetical plans of their opponents (Alf Landon and Walter Mondale, respectively). Both incumbents made a better case for what they intended to do, and both enjoyed decisive victories. In 2012, Barack Obama will face a similar situation. But what will happen if his ultimate opponent provides no plan for him to refute? What if his opponent merely says, "Have faith in me. Have faith that I will figure everything out and that I can fix the economy, because I have faith in the American people. Together, we have faith in each other."
The guy arguing, in effect, against blind faith is himself placing blind faith in Barack Obama with zero to back it up. Klosterman placing Obama into a comparison with FDR and Ronald Reagan? This would be like inserting a comparison of Tim Tebow to Roger Staubach and John Elway midway through the article with nothing to back it up. FDR and Reagan? Jimmy Carter and Benjamin Harrison are more like it. Klosterman literally projects the GOP having an argument of, "Have faith in me. Have faith that I will figure everything out and that I can fix the economy" when that is the EXACT re-election platform Obama will have to take because - well because Obama has objectively been perhaps the most ineffective Chief Executive in the history of the US. The fact that this gets inserted into the middle of a story on Tim Tebow is Exhibit A of the Groupthink that will be the downfall of Grantland. Why go to read any of the articles when you already know the slant and the snark all of the articles will have in common?

A Very Calvin and Hobbes Christmas

Friday, December 16, 2011

Tebow Comparison

Just for the heck of it - take a look at this player comparison:
Player A - 52.3% Comp% / 5.8% Int% / 180.4 PYG / 14.6 RYG
Player B - 51.9% Comp% / 5.4% Int% / 166.6 PYG / 13.4 RYG
Player C - 48.9% Comp% / 1.8% Int% / 97.2 PYG / 37.2 RYG
Player A is New England favorite son Steve Grogan, Player B is Hall of Famer Terry Bradshaw and Player C is Tim Tebow. It is interesting to note how closely Grogan compares to Bradshaw but the reason I made the comparison was to show how closely Tim Tebow is coming to resemble these two old school winners. Sure the passing yards per game isn't quite up to Grogan's or Bradshaw's level yet but who doesn't think that as time goes on Tebow won't be attempting more passes per game and thus upping his PYG? For example - if you just took this season then Tebow is averaging 117.3 PYG and 47.0 RYG which if combined puts Tebow very close to the offensive output from Grogan (just 30.7 yards less per game) and just less than 15 yards per game than Bradshaw averaged over the course of his career.

Green Police Stormtroopers

An item I came across at Instapundit made me think of Karl Marx's 1852 quote that history repeats itself "the first time as tragedy, the second time as farce." Except I think in this case the first time was fake history as farce and the second time it is real history as farce.
2010 Audi Green Police Super Bowl Commercial
VW put on notice by Greenpeace UK's Star Wars stormtroopers
Makes me want to drill holes in my muffler.

Christopher Hitchens 1949-2011

Christopher Hitchens has passed away. I did not always agree with him but he always made me think and almost always managed to make me laugh.
Hitchens' last piece for Vanity Fair
Christopher Buckley on the Death of Hitchens
I think this clip of Hitchens on Bill Maher's show pretty well sums up the man, his intelligence and his attitude.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

If I were to brainwash someone to be a serial killer - I would use the Lexis December to Remember tune as the trigger to set him off... These are awesome! Dirty Signs with Kristin... It should be noted that the Red Sox signing of Kelly Shoppach also saved the team $650,000 over what they paid Jason Varitek last year. Team seems to be in penny-pinching mode... How long before someone claims to have found a picture of Tim Tebow in their toast? Or the inside of a tomato?... I would really like to know the rest of the story of why this guy was banned from his adult hockey league... When people shake hands and say "How do you do" I instinctively say "How do I do what?"
Linky Links

Stuff I found interesting and thought I'd share.

- Congratulations on your big hooters

- Incredible - light particles crawl through a Coke bottle at a trillion frames per second

- I could watch video of Dick Vermeil coaching and getting emotional all day

- Debunking the myths of Tim Tebow. Interesting look at Tebow's work ethic and football IQ.

- Speaking of his Tim - Tebow told Tillman that his interception was lucky

Guilty is a song from Gravity Kills which was featured in the movie se7en. Many people think the song was by Nine Inch Nails. They're wrong.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Red Sox Moves

The Red Sox made a trade with the Astros today sending Jed Lowrie and Kyle Weiland to Houson for Mark Melancon. I think this may be good move for both clubs.

I like Jed Lowrie but honestly he's not as good as Marco Scutaro, Kevin Youkilis or Dustin Pedroia. Not even close. Where and when would he play? And is he as good as super prospects Will Middlebrooks or Jose Iglesias? Again - not close. In short there was no future with the Red Sox barring a big injury and Lowrie suddenly learning how to hit right handed pitching (career .214 BA and .635 OPS in 529 AB). For the Astros - Lowrie can step in and be the starting shortstop and be a 20 HR guy at Minute Maid Park. If Lowrie was a bigger name player you would see the Red Sox PR machine gearing up to bad mouth him on his way out of town.

Kyle Weiland would have been an innings eater at Pawtucket this year for the Red Sox but for the Astros he can easily step in and be the 5th starter or even 4th starter. The Astros rotation is awful and they are actively trying to trade Wandy Rodriguez and Brett Myers. I could easily see Weiland giving them double the innings as a starter that they got from Mack Melancon last season. There's a value in that and you never know - Weiland could blossom into a very good NL starter.

Mark Melancon was the Astros closer last year but ask yourself - how valuable can any closer be to a 100-loss team? You could have Mo Rivera and what real good would it do you? So the Astros get a starting shortstop and a starting pitcher but they give up a young serviceable closer. In return the Red Sox get a guy who can close but who most likely will be a 7th or 8th inning guy and who is just 2 months older than Daniel Bard.

Yesterday the Red Sox signed veteran catcher Kelly Shoppach to a 1-year $1.35 million deal. A deal that basically signals the end to the Jason Varitek era in Boston. Stoppach has a career .909 OPS vs LHP including a .788 OPS last year. This foreshadows a platoon with Jarrod Saltalamacchia in 2012.
Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

Today is Monkey Day. I kid you not. Happy Monkey Day... Study: 87 Percent Of Movies Would Be Better With Michael Keaton In Them. Two things - doesn't Michael Keaton have a huge forehead? Second - this Onion piece reminds me of my belief that you could immediately make all the Ben Affleck and all the Ben Stiller movies 100% better if you switched those two in the starring roles. Think about it... Craig James for Senate is an anagram for "A Magnesia for Rejects"... This math is truly incredible. The odds of Tebow's historic stretch of wins? 1 in 27 million... The 1951 version of A Christmas Carol with Alastair Sim is the best ever made. The 2nd best was the 1999 version with Patrick Stewart... I am disappointed to announce that today I too failed to discover the Higgs Boson. There will be no press release... If I had the room on one of my walls - I would want one of these. Fathead now selling the Tim Tebow "Tebowing" version

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Linky Links

Stuff I found interesting and thought I'd share.

- The Church of the Latter Day Dude. I'm seriously thinking about getting ordained in this religion.

- Heh heh - Rick Perry - bad lip reading

- Awesome photo of Paris

- The 50 Best Beers. My first New Year's resolution will be to try each one of these beers.

- The Sloths are Coming. Sloth babies might be next Christmas's big toy.

- I agree - Bill Romanowski Remains A Terrifying Human Being

Monday, December 12, 2011

Thank You Very Much

I can't watch or hear that song without smiling. The 1970 version of Scrooge is not the best but this song always makes me happy - and isn't happiness what Christmas is all about? I also have to say that Albert Finney is a very under rated actor. Can you believe that's the same guy from Miller's Crossing?
Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

I haven't seen anyone on ESPN or the NFL Network mention that the play before the interception that set Tom Brady off and created the heated discussion on the sideline came after Wes Welker dropped sure TD pass on the play before... The things the Internet makes you think about - even if you won $1 million in the lottery for every month for the rest of your life - you would never become a billionaire (unless of course you were a vampire and were immortal)... Celtics dancing guy... Kids should send their Christmas letters to Tim Tebow instead of Santa - they'd have a better chance of getting good gifts because Tim seems to be God's favorite right now... President William Henry Harrison drank hard cider from a gourd - a fact that sound funny when said out loud... 11 Visual Cliches You Never See in Real Life... Ryan Braun tested positive for PED's? I haven't been this disappointed since I learned Cash Cab was fixed

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Last Night's GOP Debate

I enjoyed last night's GOP Debate but I keep thinking about the exchange between Mitt Romney and Newt Gingrich regarding Newt calling the Palestinians an "invented people". Here's what I would have said if I were Romney:
I am sure Benjamin Netanyahu was thankful to you Newt because he had to spend so much time addressing your comments instead of working on his own agenda. Did he send you flowers to thank you for that unasked for favor? You say you are a historian and are only speaking the truth but you are running for President. Historians can say inflammatory "truths" in order to help with book sales but Presidents cannot. Let me give you an example that may explain to you the difference. Newt Gingrich is overweight. Medical science says that elderly, sedentary, overweight men are more likely to have a massive heart attack and die. That's the truth but calling you an old fat man isn't courteous or diplomatic. But by your logic you are not allowed to take offense because I was just telling you a truth.
I also don't see Mitt offering Rick Perry the $10,000 wager as hurting Romney as so many seem to be suggesting. The idea of "put up or shut up" is pretty universal across the country. Romney was willing to put his money where his mouth was and when push came to shove Rick Perry was not.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

You Kill Me

You Kill Me is a 2007 dark comedy that has really gone under the radar. If you have a chance watch it.
Linky Links

Stuff I found interesting and thought I'd share.

- Thomas Macdonough is an American war hero who should be better remembered (but alas he's not)

- Things hard to say drunk

- The Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain - The Good, The Bad and The Ugly

- Dave Winfield in 1973, playing college basketball for Minnesota

- Louis CK Out-take

- Awesome - The 50 Greatest Internet Memes of 2011

- How can you not root for and respect Troy Calhoun of Air Force?

- Top 16 ways to get woman / wife according to Bible
Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

Is it OK for a funeral home to display holiday lights? Even the plain white ones? Walked by one with the decorations lit last night and it just struck me as odd... Pleasing 15 women... When I die I would like my ashes spread over people protesting things I am in favor of. Hopefully in the rain so that my ashes get all stickey and mess up their hair and stuff... I still say AC/DC's Its a Long Way to the Top if You Want to Rock and Roll is the perfect rock song... What's stopping job creation? Too much regulation... Keep your friends close but your enemies closer. If Mars is the friend of Earth what does that make the moon? Fucking Moon... Has anyone seen Joe Theisman and Larry Bowa in the same room at the same time? Separated at birth... Heh heh - 25 Ugly Christmas Sweaters... Quote for the day: "Everyone is entitled to his own opinions, but not his own facts". Daniel Patrick Moynihan... I would not be surprised if Jason Varitek wound up with the Angels.... 2011 Taylor University Silent Night. I had never heard of this tradition before. It is perhaps the most awesome thing I've seen in quite some time.

Thursday, December 08, 2011

Linky Links

Stuff I found interesting and thought I'd share.

- Tebow, Tebow, Tebow

- WTF Whistling

- Watch Aptera employees smash prototype electric cars as company goes under

- The dangers of pornography

- Will Ferrell Old Milwaukee ads - Ad Number 1 - Ad Number 2

- Here's a map of the new Big East in 2014
Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

Nice analysis of some of Red Sox potential trade chips. Really surprised that Lars Anderson wasn't mentioned. He's completely blocked by Adrian Gonzalez... If I was in the US Senate I would attach approval for the Keystone oil pipeline to every since piece of legislation daring President Obama to veto everything. The country would win either way... Lindsey Vonn takes 1st place at the Alpine World Cup, then Tebows on medal stand... USA Networks has announced a new TV show. In the pilot an aging TV star is kicked off a flight in Miami and has to do good deeds to get his reputation back. Burn Notice II with Alec Baldwin... The Soviet Union Was Dissolved 20 Years Ago Today. Some very interesting facts in the link. The one that stood out for me was male life expectancy in 1980 USSR was 62 but today male life expectancy in Russian Federation is just 59. What's up with that?... Very sad day here in Worcester as another Worcester Fireman has given the last full measure of devotion a little over 12 years since the City lost 6 heroes.

Wednesday, December 07, 2011

Good News - Bad News for Irish Guys

Irish Accents Surpass French Accents As The World’s Sexiest, Supposedly

According to this map the Irish have the second smallest penis size in Europe (thank God for the Romanians).

There is a joke in here someplace regarding those two items but I'm afraid to bring it up because the response may be - the joke is in your pants!

Monday, December 05, 2011

Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

I wonder if a Josh Beckett for Hanley Ramirez swap gets discussed at the Winter Meetings? Both players are signed through 2014 for about the exact same money. Hanley wants to stay at shortstop and the Marlins could use a front line starter like Beckett who is very well liked in South Beach. Beckett might want a change of scenery... 50 Unexplainable Black & White Photos - I posted these before but they are just too awesome not to link to again... 78 years ago today the 21st Amendment, ending Prohibition, was ratified. On a related note I had way too much to drink Saturday... The greatest trick Santa Claus ever pulled was convincing the world he didn't exist... Penn Jillette: An Atheist's Guide to the 2012 Election. Disagree with him about Romney but anything he does seems to be interesting... I would have picked about 100 other music acts before Madonna but I think people will be surprised at how well she does at the Super Bowl. She will not be awful like the Black Eyed Peas. She will be professional and probably flawless in her act... Tom Brady gets Victoria Secret super model. Aaron Rodgers gets discount double-check. Advantage Brady... The reason I prefer Mitt Romney over Newt Gingrich in a nutshell? Romney went into private business to become rich while Gingrich used Congress to become rich basically at the expense directly or indirectly of the American taxpayer... I wish Bobby Valentine all the luck in the world but it needs to be said that Terry Francona deserved better from the Red Sox.

Sunday, December 04, 2011

Top 5 - Christmas Songs by Rock Stars

I'm already partly sick of Christmas music. Anyway - here are the top 5 Christmas songs by rocks stars in my estimation.

1. Father Christmas - The Kinks
2. Do They Know It's Christmas - Band Aid
3. Santa Claus is Coming to Town - Bruce Springsteen
4. God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen - Bare Naked Ladies
5. Little Drummer Boy - Bing Crosby and David Bowie

Saturday, December 03, 2011

Linky Links

Stuff I found interesting and thought I'd share.

- Jon Heyman is Leaving Sports Illustrated for CBS Sports. Don't always agree with his analysis but Heyman is a hard worker, good writer and excellent guy.

- Heh Heh

- Interesting George Will column on how Obamacare is harming small business

- 10 Ways Shakespeare Changed Everything

- Bruce Springsteen and Bob Seger Perform 'Old Time Rock & Roll' in NYC. Not for nothing but Springsteen seems to age like Clint Eastwood while Seger seems to be going the Winfred Brimley route.

- Awesome - Ugly Renaissance Babies
Haiku Horse Handicapping

I read this brief article about the "world's last handwritten newspaper" and it gave me an idea - OK more like it gave me a dream.

If I was a teacher or someone who had the summers off I would spend my summer in Saratoga Springs, NY. Each day I would review the next day's races and I would make my picks. Here's where the dream comes in - each day I would make my picks in Haiku format and would write them out by hand in as neat a calligraphy style as possible. I would then have copies made and would sell them each morning for say $1.50.

The draw would be not just the picks (which I hope would be good) but also the fact I could advertise the broadsheet as both the "only handwritten newspaper in America" and also the "only newspaper in America written in Haiku." People would buy them as novelty items. I could easily sell 100-200 copies a day.

If there is an average of 45 racing days at Saratoga per season then you'd be looking at an income of around $250 per day (when you also factor in advertising). That would be plenty to pay for room, board, betting and beer for the season with probably a few shekels left over to go into the savings account (plus whatever winnings at the track).
Saratoga Dream
Daily make picks in Haiku
Bet horses / have fun

Friday, December 02, 2011

Tim Tebow - Great Minds Think Alike

From the latest Michael Lombardi article:
One of the elements of Tim Tebow's game that goes unnoticed is that when he plays at home in the Mile High City, the altitude affects the opponents after spending three quarters chasing Tebow around. John Elway would wear out his opponents with his ability to move around, and Tebow does the same. They have different styles but the results are the same - defenses get tired.
Here's what I wrote 2 weeks ago:
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.
Maybe Michael Lombardi reads my blog?

Thursday, December 01, 2011

Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

Who knew? New York Jets owner Woody Johnson is Mitt Romney’s national finance co-chairman... I had this dream that James Bond and Indiana Jones starred in a movie called Cowboys and Aliens - that was just a bad dream - right?... Even without knowing German, see if you can tell what Der Spiegel thinks of the GOP field. The Dr. No label next to Ron Paul made me laugh... The Broncos were 1-4 with Kyle Orton who had 8 TDs but also 7 INT's as QB. I keep stressing that it was the INT's that did the Broncos in. Tim Tebow doesn't throw INT's... What's not to like about Bobby Valentine? He invented the Chicken Cesar wrap, speaks fluent Japanese, plays the accordion and owns a herd of American buffalo that he keeps in New Zealand.

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.