February 28, 2014

A view behind the curtain

I sat across the kitchen table from my wife at supper last night. She looked up at me and gave me a piercing look. "Has anyone ever told you that you are a witty, handsome, and intelligent man?" she asked.

I gave her my best lopsided grin. "Why no". I replied.

"Good" she intoned as she scooped up some mashed potatoes, "I do not want you to have any false illusions"

Friday Music



Makes me want to crack a beer and stroll down my pot-hole strewn memory lane.

February 27, 2014

Humans are jerks

What is wrong with people? In the past couple of weeks there have been some events that leave me sickened and baffled. First a guy won custody of his kid.  The wife failed to return the kid at the appropriate time so he killed her in the parking lot of a daycare center. He had won custody. His lawyer was in court as the shooting happened, filing papers on the wife. The ex-wife was not fleeing, she just did not agree with the court order, thus ensuring he would maintain custody. Now he does not have his kid either.

The second incident leaves me almost sick. A guy picked up his 14 year old son from junior high. When he failed to bring the kid to his ex-wife's at the appropriate time she called the police. The cops located the car some hours later.  It appears the father shot his son and himself in a murder-suicide. WTF? That kid had his whole life to live. What a selfish, asshole son-of-a-bitch prick. If the father could not live without his son, he should have crawled off and offed himself. There was no reason to kill an innocent kid. I hope that father spends eternity with the Devil's pitchfork rammed square up his ass.

I have never been divorced, but a friend of mine once summed up what I thought was the perfect attitude towards divorce and kids. He told me that it was not his kids fault their Mom and Dad could not get along, and it was his duty as a father to make sure the issues the parents have with each other do not affect the kids lives.

February 26, 2014

Everything I need to know I learned from Billy Jack

Several bloggers have commented on the insane legislation in Arizona that would make it legal to discriminate on the basis of "religion". Hasn't anyone in the Arizona legislature seen Billy Jack? (Didn't that epic film take place in Arizona?). Refusing service to a person because he is gay is no different than refusing service to a person based on skin color. Good god, is Arizona going to demand a pink star for the LGBT community next? This proposed law is but a short hop, skip and jump from legislating separate drinking fountains. 



On the other hand, I am not sure why anyone would want their wedding cake, for instance, baked by a person who did not want to make it. But then I always think people are going to spit in my food.  That is just one of many reasons I am always nice to waiters and waitresses.

Stuff that ticks me off

My coffee got cold while I was taking a shit this morning.

February 25, 2014

Next I will be out on the neighbor's swing set

I stepped into the kitchen last evening to take my medicine. The wife was out running some errands.  The little boy in me came to the fore unbidden. In a spontaneous moment, I hoisted myself up, one arm on the island the other on the counter top like a gymnast on the parallel bars. As I swung my legs forward my right elbow collapsed, I fell straight to the hardwood floor smacking both elbows on the counters on the way down and landing flat on my back.  At least I did not hit my head on the sink behind me. My only thought was "What an idiot" as I fell in what seemed like slow motion. For the first hour or two I thought I chipped a bone in my left elbow, but this morning I think it is just a calcium floater that has been there a while.

When did I get so old?  I used to be strong.  I know I am not in high school shape any more, but unable to hold my weight on straightened arms is just depressing. The more important question is what possessed me to try something so stupid in the first place?

February 24, 2014

I've worked hard



No matter your political position, this is funny.

The original:



h/t C&S

February 23, 2014

An American Tale

I sat down to watch a movie about Patrick Swayze. He was a kid from the wrong end of the tracks who was going to Wolverine Community College during the day and working as a bouncer in a tough bar by night. Everyone was always putting him down because they did not like his stereotype. Patrick fell in love with a doctor named Baby who wanted him to teach her to dance all awesome like only Patrick could.

There were a bunch of Spanish-speaking soldiers who were looking for Patrick and his gang, because they could dance and the soldiers couldn't. At some point Patrick kicked the Spanish soldier's resident martial arts expert's ass in a bar fight.  A girl wanted to get an abortion, and Patrick helped her make a clay pot In shop class.  This made everyone very angry and the crime bosses had an auto parts store burned down. A defiant Patrick Swayze danced with Baby in a suggestive manner. The soldiers put Patrick's dad in a concentration camp, and even worse -- the put Baby in a corner. They also ran over some cars with a giant 4-wheel drive truck.

Patrick tried to win them over with some incredible dancing, but in the end he had to round a bunch of his gang and go to war. He received coded messages from Whoopi Goldberg, who dressed up like a Wolverine in order to tell Patrick where to attack the Spanish speaking soldiers. Patrick did his amazing machine gun dance and won the war, and Baby's undying love. In the end, all of the rich white guys shook his hand and told Patrick they were wrong about him. Sadly, Patrick died at the hands of evil commies who ran a secret training center in the Catskill Mountains. In true never-give-up fashion Patrick came back as a ghost and haunted poor Baby for the rest of her life.

I might have fallen asleep at some point of the movie.

February 22, 2014

Rinse, repeat -- A post for my big brother



I'm off in a bit to do the hardwood floor thing. I hope it does not take three days for my muscles to recover this week.

February 21, 2014

Friday Music



I am not sure we have played CCR as a Friday Music selection. That injustice is now corrected.

February 20, 2014

Lighten Up, Francis

No heavy boring incomprehensible essays today. I woke to thunder and lightning and a steady rain this morning.  I am OK with that, you don't have to shovel rain!

I have a full day on tap. I hope you have a good day too.

February 19, 2014

What we have here is a failure to communicate

I had a lot of windshield time last week. Spinning through the dial I found myself listening to Rush. He repeatedly asked his callers why the left seemed determined to change the culture, to destroy "American values". Why is there an assault on the notion of hard work, religion, and traditional family?

Once again the answer can be found through studying history. There is a branch of political thought that maintains that only through the actions of the state can we all find true equality and thus happiness. The people who subscribe to this credo are certain that the misery of the human condition can only be resolved through the elimination of those things that cause worry, misery and discontent -- money, religion, and the artificial barriers to happiness created by the need to find housing, food, and health. The concept is simple. If we can eliminate money and religion and countries there would be no cause for war, for crime, for hatred. John Lennon stated it so eloquently in his song Imagine. I do not write that facetiously.

How do we reach this utopia? Philosophers and true believers have tried. Robert Owens and Mao were not so different in their beliefs. In order for the state to succeed in banishing inequality, you must eliminate all barriers to the state. First you must eliminate religion. If a citizen is worshiping a god, then he feels superior to another who may worship a different god, or who may believe in none at all. Moral righteousness comes from the state, not a belief system. No one may claim moral superiority if we all live under the same moral guidance. There is no judgement if we all believe the same. We must all work for each other. The collective whole is superior to anything, including god and family. It takes a village to raise a child. It is not a coincidence that since time immemorial kings and despots have declared themselves gods. There can be nothing superior to the State.

You must make everyone equal economically. Whether you eliminate the wealthy, or elevate the poor so all are on equal footing, the result is equal poverty. There is no envy if we all have the same clothing, the same living conditions, the same toilet paper.

Artificial political barriers must be eliminated. Patriotism breeds resentment and hatred. America is not superior to Mexico, Citizens of Chad are equal to those of Belgium. Governments cause wars. A League of Nations, a United Nations, A Star Trek-inspired Federation will eliminate the need for armies to destroy each other over an imaginary line on a map. The true progressive believes we are citizens of the Nation of Man. That is why they do not like immigration laws and patriotic flag waving. For the World Citizen, the Stars and Stripes are a symbol of war, hatred and inequality.

Whether the experiment was pre-John Smith Jamestown, the French Revolution, Brook Farm, New Harmony, the Soviet Union, Communist China, Castro's Cuba, or modern Venezuela, the pattern is remarkably unchanged. Sadly, the experiments always end in failure.

February 18, 2014

Why should we study history?

I have some stuff  I want to say, but the essays will be long and complex. That brings to mind two immediate problems; nay three. First, I have proven time and again I lack the requisite writing skills to present my postulations clearly. It is probably a good thing I turned away from my youthful dream of finding employment as a historian. Next, you do not want to read a long political essay. You are either on board with right thinking political expressions or you are at heart a bleeding fucking commie/commie-light, or idiot. Sadly, there is no other choice. There is no capitalist-light category. Finally, ranting and raving in these pages is akin to shouting at the wind. Even if I somehow found some up-to-this-point undiscovered writing skills and a willing audience, I am not sure I have the desire to spend hours researching and outlining the historical and political underpinnings of my thesis.

I have often stated my position that history never repeats itself. But it does provide a window to human behavior. History offers real-life lessons on the mistakes made by humans. The road to tyranny is a slow-moving highway. It is rush hour on the Dan Ryan, five o'clock on the 101, The George Washington Bridge after a Governor Christie temper tantrum. History is replete with examples of free men sliding into bondage.  The Roman Gracchi, the Empire of Napoleon, and yes, at the risk of losing all credibility, even the rise of Hitler are perfect examples of free citizens giving a little bit of freedom at a time until they wake one day living under the autocratic thumb of an Emperor, a king, a dictator.

So the President changes the implementation date of a law; big deal, say his supporters. The delay is what we all wanted anyway. Maybe he is bending the Constitution with his Executive Orders or his administration's failure to enforce laws he does not like. "What do I care?" says the truly ignorant. Heck, the Senate/Assembly/Reichstag/Congress cannot agree on the right path anyway. At least someone is willing to step up and do the right thing for the people...

Losing your freedom is a bit like being a little bit pregnant. It is an all or nothing proposition.

Ah fuck it. I was right in the first paragraph.

February 17, 2014

Ow, ow, ouch

Saturday I helped a friend put in a hardwood floor. We did not get done with the big room (20 x 20) and he still has the rest of the house to do. I have never helped do hardwood. It was fun and different and not nearly as hard as you would think.  I functioned like I always do in this guy's home improvement projects -- an apprentice helper. I carried in the boxes of flooring, laid out the pattern, and helped push the boards into place while he operated the nailer After about five hours we were both beat. I told him I would come back Sunday.

Luckily he did not call. Yesterday and today my hamstrings hurt. Bad. I feel like an 80 year old guy. My thighs burn with pain every time I try to get up or down.  The stairs are agony. The first few seconds after I get out of a chair I hobble like an old man. Bending to pull on my jeans this morning was a chore.Youth, why have you forsaken me?

Miscellaneous Monday

You saw it, I do not think anyone else did. The gen-pop will get another opportunity another day. For those of you confused by the opening to this post, that means you are getting a post fresh from the oven this morning. It is a catch-all holiday Monday honoring the Chief Executives of the country -- Lincoln, Washington, T.R., Reagan and yes Carter, Buchanan, and William Henry Harrison who has to be the most ineffectual President ever.  This means I am off work today. Lucky me. I get a day off in the middle of winter, with more snow and ice and wintry goodness scheduled.  I just may have to go down to the cigar shop this afternoon. Curse you groundhog.

We have had record snowfall this winter. I live on a cul-de-sac and that meas most of the front yards are semi-pie shaped. Due to the irregular shape of our court, the stretch in front of my house and the neighbor to the north there is a long open space.  In fact, this is the only real place that leaves significant room between driveways. Out of necessity, the plow shoves all of the snow from the street into my front yard. We now have a mound of icy, chunky, snow some 6-8 feet high and 20 feet in diameter in front of our house. There is nowhere else to put the snow.

The result is the snow has encroached into the area in front of my mailbox. I have shoveled it away as far as possible, but there is an ice wall about three feet away from my mailbox. My mail lady refuses to bring my mail since she can not drive up and poke in the bills by reaching through her little truck window. She would have to put one foot out of the truck and lean forward to reach the mailbox.

I understand the driver is not suppose to get out, it is not a walking route. But it is not like I don't shovel.  My drive and sidewalks are always cleaned off.  I am one of the first in the cul-de-sac to clean the snow.  I have managed to move a significant amount from the snow mountain, breaking one snow shovel in the process, but now I am at the core of the my local Mt. Everest and it is rock-hard and solid ice.

I chased the snow plow driver down Friday evening and explained that I have received mail once in the past 8 days due to his snow pile.  He looked at the mound and told me "I can't move that." I replied that I sure could not move it with a shovel. He clipped away the edges but there is really nothing anyone can do. The mail lady drove right past again Saturday.

I hope to catch the mail lady tomorrow and ask her what she proposes for the snow mountain.  If she continues to refuse to deliver I guess I will have to call the postmaster. What really honks me off is my neighbor to the north has not shoveled even one flake of snow all winter.  He just drives through the mess in his driveway. Since his mailbox is on the other side of his driveway, my lazy neighbor gets his mail, while I rant in silent frustration.

February 15, 2014

Stuff I have seen

Festung Marienberg, Wurzburg, Germany

February 14, 2014

Friday Music, you guess the theme edition









And this is the greatest album cover ever:

EVER!



The snows of Charlotte, Part Two

reuters.com
I imagine you last left this old blog screaming at the screen "What happened next?" .

Or not.

To refresh your memory, in spite of dire weather forecasts, I had made my way to Charlotte North Carolina on the eve of an expected blizzard. Let us pause to answer the most basic of questions you are asking the electronic me -- "Why did you go when you knew the weather would be bad?"  The answer is easy, it is my job. I have been burned numerous times over the years by cancelling  trips based on the wildly inaccurate weather models only to find that the whole event was over-hyped and and the expected weather pulled a Hank Williams and failed to show. My customers are open year-round, not just in summer. I have suffered a few times for taking chances, most notably the three days I was stuck in Harrisburg, PA in a hotel that had just lost its liqueur license.

Anyway, I was holed up Tuesday night in a nice hotel.  I watched the weather and went to bed, prepared to sit on hold with the airlines again in the morning. I woke with a germ of an idea in my head. I looked out the window to see a snow-free parking lot. I turned on the local news and saw the snow was not supposed to hit until 8 or 9 in the morning. I called my customer and left a message to see if we could move our meeting up a few hours. I took a quick shower and headed down for breakfast.

It was still early, not quite seven o'clock. Still no snow as I ate an omelet and drank some Java. I was back in my room packing when my  phone dinged an incoming email signal.  The customer wrote that our meeting was cancelled; the plant was closed!  YES! something was going right!

You see, this weather front was moving straight up from the south.  If I could get going north out of town, I could get ahead enough to miss out on the bad weather before I had to turn west. I called the rental car company to let them know I was turning in the car in Indianapolis instead of Charlotte. I threw my bag into the Mustang and pointed my way up I-77.

The interstate through downtown Charlotte was nearly empty as I made my way under cloudy skies. The radio had no connection for my iPhone, so I was stuck with finding local radio stations. For some reason the radio would only search and scan for religious programing. I don't know if that was a sign, or the actions of the previous driver. In any case I had to search out demon rock and roll and evil right-wing talk radio by hand twirling the dial.

I rode that Mustang through North Carolina, and both Virginias before turning west toward Kentucky in Charleston. We galloped through the bluegrass country, turning back north toward Cincinnati and then into the Hoosierland. I zipped past Batesville, where the caskets are made, and rode past my old stomping grounds of Greensburg and Shelbyville. My Mustang and I were in the homestretch. After more than ten hours I found myself back at the Indy airport.  I recovered my own car and arrived back home, tired but sporting a firm sense of victory over the forces that spin a capricious fate over the frequent traveler.

Hey, if you want drama you should watch TV. Oh, I did drop my debit card under the rental car when I tried to get money from a drive-up ATM.  Is that exciting enough?  What if I told you I murdered and dismembered a  hitchhiker somewhere in the West Virginia mountains after he caught me running moonshine down into the flatlands.  What if I described in Penthouse Forum detail a sexual adventure in the back seat of the Mustang with a beautiful blond named Annie? And her twin sister named Amie? I suppose I could relate how gunmen from a rival family tried to shoot me down when I stopped at a tollbooth.

I did drop my ATM card.  I simply pulled forward and picked it up.

February 13, 2014

The snows of Charlotte, Part One.

charlotteobserver.com
If you watch the weather you know the southeast got whacked with severe weather this week. I had the joy of flying into Charlotte on Tuesday evening. My flight in was delayed several hours as the plane was late, then the delays put too many hours on the crew.  We then had to wait for qualified pilots. I am OK with waiting on qualified pilots.  Who wants the baggage handler guy or red wand waving guy flying the plane?

When I was getting off the plane, my phone rang with the notice my return flight, scheduled for Wednesday evening, had already been cancelled. Shitfuck. I did a quick scan of the board and all flights back to Indy on Tuesday evening were cancelled. So was almost every other flight at the normally busy airport. The line at the airline service desk snaked down the concourse. I headed for the  rental cars.

The rental car bus dropped me off at the super secret elite frequent rental car driver drop point. The sign board directed me to stall 51. There, white paint gleaming under the sodium lights, was a shiny clean Ford Mustang. Yes, in the face of one of the worst ice and snow storms to ever hit the area,  I was given the only real-wheel drive car on the lot.  These same people upgraded me to a SUV on three straight trips late last summer and fall. This time I get the sports car. I headed to the hotel, that old I'm-going-to-get-stuck-here feeling left me depressed.

After a quick dinner of chicken wings and a couple of Yeunglings I called my super secret elite frequent flyer number. I was put on hold to wait the next customer service rep. After 1/2 hour on hold I used the hotel phone to call the general airline customer service number. I was put on hold. I now had dueling on-hold messages and music playing in both ears, one on speaker, one on a receiver glued to my head. Tick tock. Tick tock. I tried to play a few games on my iPad. Finally, after nearly two hours on hold I heard a real live voice on the cell phone  "Hello Joseph..."  I hung up the hotel phone and grabbed my cell off the table. In my haste to turn off the speaker I accidentally hung up the phone.


Then I cried.

At least inside. I also cursed myself vigorously.

I checked availability of flights on-line. It looked like Friday was my next opening. I made a half-hearted attempt to call the airline back and left the phone on hold for another 40 minutes before giving up, ready to try again in the morning. I turned on the local news and watched the grim weather forecast. I called down to the front desk to see if  I could extend my stay. The clerk said that may be a problem. He said a lot depended on the number of cancellations they got on Wednesday. I said to put me on the list.  I decided on the spot to hold back the Mr. Asshole routine and did not even trot out my super secret elite frequent hotel sleeper diamond status card. I decided to wait and see what bad news Wednesday would bring.

to be continued...


February 12, 2014

Wayback Wednesday

I may have published this before. When you write 4,300 plus posts one tends to forget what was presented previously. This is one of my favorite pictures. This is my wife and daughter taken one winter day in what had to be early 1987.

Do the Van Halen thing (jump)

February 11, 2014

If ObamaCare is so great...

...why does the President keep delaying implementation?

High hopes, low expectations



Spring training is right around the corner. I need that knowledge as I look at the temperature reading of -14 on my iPhone.

Animal Crackers in my soup

Long time readers know I love old movies. I was never a big Shirley Temple fan, though. But the news readers tell me the actress/ambassador has passed on to wherever we go when we pass on (you beliefs may vary). RIP Curly Top.

February 10, 2014

Hello, My name Is Jim

I had to talk to a customer service department today. The guy who answered was clearly Indian (subcontinent, not reservation). He told me his name was Jim.  He had a very thick accent and I was instantly pissed off. Not because he was answering from India, but because he claimed his name was Jim. Had he told me to call him Ganesh, or Raj or Anoop, or even Dhruv , I would have been fine.  When he pretended his name was Jim he lost all credibility with me. How could I believe anything he said?  Our entire conversation started with a lie. Every word after the introduction was based on a foundation of falsehood.

Cleveland, The Rodney Dangerfield of Cities

I am reading Jim Bouton's baseball classic Ball Four. I ran across this passage which cracked me up:
Flying in to Cleveland last night I thought about life in this great American city and decided that if you were going to crash on a Cleveland flight it would be better if it was an inbound flight.
Bouton has the same sarcastic, dry sense of humor I occasionally display around my family and friends.

February 8, 2014

Stuff I have seen

St Maartin  2013
Wish I was there.

February 7, 2014

Live blogging my breakfast, or How to bore both of your loyal readers to tears

I sit at the breakfast table munching a bowl of Corn Pops this morning. The sun is rising bright in the eastern sky. The brightness belies the frigid temperatures. The backyard is covered with snow. There is a drift across the patio. I can see two Bradford pear trees from where I sit. The one on the right hand side is covered in fluffed-up robins. There are probably 20 birds hopping from branch to branch and fluttering around before landing again. There are no birds in the left hand tree, even though they are only about 10 yards apart. Weird that. I don't know when the robins arrived. They were not here last week, now they are in the pear, in the willow, all around. It seems early for the birds to come back from their southern vacation. The rabbit has been out scavenging for food under the pear trees too. He left tracks everywhere.  It is a regular nature preserve there in the backyard. Today is an office day and I am on my second cup of coffee. The Keurig makes a nice cup of Caribou.  School is on a 2 hour delay this morning due to the cold. According to my phone it is currently -9. I can see the buses going down the street beyond the neighbor's back yard to the elementary school down the street. My youngest is coming home from college for a visit this weekend.  I have only seen him once for a few hours since he headed back to school December 26. I miss him. I am currently reading Jim Bouton's seminal baseball memoir Ball Four. Well, not at this moment. There is nothing like reading a best seller 40 years after it hit the charts. I hear the office phone ringing. I guess that means I need to head upstairs and see who it was. I will never get my ass up there in time to answer it.

Friday Music



Gotta dig the blues

February 6, 2014

Do not be a f-ing tourist

This is truly one of the issues of the day. A decade ago I averaged 125 flights a year. I spent a lot of time in an airplane. These days I fly around 30 flights annually. That is not much compared to some road warriors, but still far more time in flying aluminum tubes than your average traveler. I have a friend who travels every week. He and I agree, the biggest problem with flying is the "fucking tourists". Not only do they get cheaper fares, they have no idea how to travel respectfully.

Here are my rules for reclining your seat and flying in general:

1. If it is a day flight of under two hours you have no need to recline your seat -- ever. If you cannot sit upright for two hours you have issues and should see a doctor.

2. Do not ever recline your seat and then lean forward to work on your laptop like the jerk in front of me did a few weeks ago.

3. Do not recline your seat during meals.

4. I know you are nervous. It is not my job to converse with you to calm your anxiety. Read your seatmates body language.  I am holding a book because I want to read it, not as a conversation starter.

5. If your bag does not fit in the overhead, cramming will not help.

5a. If you are unable to lift your bag into the overhead without help, check it, or put it under your seat.

6. One bag and a purse or briefcase: that over-sized duffel bag is not a fucking purse and you are not fooling anyone. Storage space is limited and your assholery only takes away space from someone else. I know baggage fees suck. Pack less, pack more efficiently or check your damn bag.

6A. The overhead space is for everyone. You are not guaranteed the space above your seat. A guy once went rabid dog on me for putting my bag above his seat. The attendant had to restrain him from following me down the aisle demanding I move my stuff from "his bin". Like I said -- fucking tourists.

6b. The space under the seat in front of you is yours. You cannot put your stuff under the seat in front of me.  Yes, I have seen jerks try this -- one guy put his bag under the seat across the aisle. His argument to the attendant who told him to move it -- "I need the legroom, she doesn't"!

7. If you are on short flight on a puddle jumper (small commuter flight) you do not have to work. If you have not prepared for your meeting, that extra 30 minutes is not going to help, and your elbow in my side while you try to manage your laptop is just rude.

8. Have your ticket ready when they call your zone or row.

9. Read the TSA rules before you go to the airport. You are going to have remove liquids from your bag. Do not make everyone wait while you unpack your suitcase. If you forget, move your shit off the line and let those of us who are prepared go through while you rifle your belongings.

9A if you are wearing 30 pounds of jewelry you will set off the metal detectors. I know you think you look nice, but you are fucking up the process.  

10. Go easy on the perfume and cologne when flying. Some of us do not like the scent as well as you do, especially when we cannot escape the odor.

10a If you have long hair, there is no need to flip it over the seat back into my space. You may not want to lean on it, but I don't want it in my Diet Coke.

February 5, 2014

Remember how she was too broke to buy a box of rubbers

But now she has the funds to run for political office.

I guess her only aim in life is to live off of the taxpayers in one way or another.

A letter to my son

Dear son,

I hope your classes at the university are going well. I miss you and wish you were here.

I need someone to shovel this fucking driveway.

Love,

Dad


For the first time all year it took me two sessions to shovel the drive. Last night's 7+ inches 8+ inches of snow was wet and heavy. The issue is compounded by the three feet of snow already lining the drive.  I have to throw it a bit higher. Really, I usually like winter, but I am looking ahead to spring earlier than usual.

I am sure this crap would stop if the neighbors would just turn off their damn Christmas lights.

More snow last night and a few more inches scheduled for later today.

The Olympic Games start this week. I could not be less interested.

I have to do something to shake the case of the mean reds that are affecting me. If you do not understand that reference your knowledge of classic films is lacking. 

February 4, 2014

Doldrums

Football is over with the attendant over-hype and over-reaction. Sorry pundits, Manning is not now a bum.  He did not lose the game. The Broncos sure did though. Manning certainly contributed, but I did not see number 18 on special teams, and he certainly did not give up 43 points on defense. I am not a basketball fan, and while pitchers and catchers report next week, meaningful baseball is still six weeks away. I do not have much expectation the Cubs will be much fun to watch again this year.

More winter weather is slated for the next ten days -- snow, subzero temps, followed by snow and more subzero temps. Winter lingers.  I long to sit in my backyard, sipping a beer and herfing a fine stogie lovingly rolled between the thighs of a Caribbean beauty queen.

It is the same old, same old in politics as assholes on both sides of the aisle conspire to usurp more and more of your freedoms. The Who had it right, Meet the new boss, same as the old boss. Every politician at every level is determined to pass more laws, to impose more regulation.

Is it lack of exercise, the cold, the low grey clouds that routinely fill the skies that leave me depressed? Is it a post-holiday let down? No Colts on Sunday? Lack of nookie? The ponderous use of sentence fragments in this paragraph? I am tired of boredom-induced snacking. I curse my heavy boots every time I lace them to wade the snow and slush. I long to wear shorts and tee shirts. Mostly, I am sick of whining about stuff in this post. I suspect you are weary of it as well.

February 3, 2014

Curse you Phil

Stupid groundhog. No wonder farmers around here kill them on sight.

February 2, 2014

It seems the road to Canton is simply based upon "his turn"

Marvin Harrison was denied the Pro Football hall of Fame yesterday. Instead it was "Andre Reed's time", the vote was based not on numbers, but in that Reed has waited a long time. Perhaps he has not gained the votes before because better players were also up for nomination?

Let us compare the wide receivers who were the finalists this year:


Hall of Fame Finalists - Wide Receivers - 2014

GP Receptions Receptions/Game Yards Yards/Game TD TD/Game
Andre Reed 234 951 4.06 13,198 56.40 87 0.37
Tim Brown 255 1,094 4.29 14,934 58.57 100 0.39
Marvin Harrison 190 1,102 5.8 14,580 76.74 128 0.67

Courtesy of Stampede Blue

It is clear Harrison far outpaced Reed.   I am in no way saying Reed is not a HOF player, he is not the better player this year. In fact, based on statistics, Reed was the third best receiver to be up for consideration this year. Based on the reporting from Mike Chappell of the Indy Star there was no debating Harrison's merits, but rather "Reed's enshrinement-worthy career aside, the tenor of the room seemed to give serious consideration to his long wait. Reed was in his eighth year of eligibility and a final-10 candidate for a fifth time".  

The HOF is supposed to be about choosing the best of the best, not the best of those who have waited the longest.


February 1, 2014

How it is done

THIS is an example of why I click on the V-man's link over there on the right nearly every day. He teases us with posts of brilliance then disappears for months at a time, but when he does favor us with his wit, his charm, his prose, it is well worth the read.

Dear guy in the hotel elevator yesterday morning

I will be the first to confess I am not a hand with the ladies, I don't even try. I will further admit that I am no slave to fashion. My business attire runs to Dockers and dress shirts. This I do know; you are forty or forty-five. The wrinkles on your forehead and around your eyes give it away and your foot-long ponytail looks plain silly.
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