Wednesday, October 31, 2007

This Doesn't Phrase Me

Everybody's playing (If I Ran the Zoo, Shakesville in Exile, etc.) so I had to too. It's best to be a lemming virtually. It's the Google Meme: try to come up with five words or phrases that, when you search Google for them, will give your blog as the first result.

Believe it or not "Mookie and Nigel" is #1 for Esau, not INOTBB. Go Amy!

But here are 5 for me:
1) auto-tootle
2) my phillie's a phanatic
3) another bug up Wendy's butt
4) I got some strangelove for baseball
5) Oprah the scab


Bat Shit Crazy

Now most of us rightfully belittle the sports radio call-in losers who think the best way for their team to improve is to make a trade that could only happen if the other team's GM was surrounded by vodka empties. And his frontal lobe is to be found in a paper bag elsewhere in the office. (Happy Halloween!)

But then actual paid journalists sometimes are just as dopey. Witness this amazing section from a column by Patrick Reusse of the Minneapolis-St. Paul Star-Tribune:

How can the Yankees make the folks who bought 4½ million tickets this season forget about A-Rod? They acquire Johan Santana from the Twins for pitchers Philip Hughes and Ian Kennedy and outfielders Melky Cabrera and Jose Tabata.

The Twins also add Joe Nathan to the deal and get bullet-throwing Joba Chamberlain.

And what if the Dodgers don't want to go A-Rod steep with their payroll? They acquire Santana from the Twins for pitchers Clayton Kershaw and Jonathan Broxton, outfielder Matt Kemp and third baseman Tony Abreu.

Let's go, Mr. Smith. Show us what you got.

Unless what new Twins GM Smith has got is photos of the Yanks' GM Cashman or the Dodgers' GM Colletti hogtied and dressed in two rubber diving suits (good thing GMs aren't more like Baptist preachers), I doubt either of these deals would happen. Both sort of amount to the team that receives Johan to trade ALL of its best young players. Santana is surely the best pitcher in baseball, but giving up 4 players, all who should rate a B+ or better (I'm being kind to Abreu and Cabrera, I know), for maybe the next 10 years--that's insane.

And I apologize for leaving you with the image of these two men hogtied in two rubber diving suits....

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Tuesday, October 30, 2007

So Close to $500 It Could Practically Smell Me

Although playing fantasy baseball tends to pervert one's sense of the game into individual achievements, maybe I do know more about real baseball than I think as I finished 88th out of 838 folks who took part in Baseball Prospectus's Predictatron 2007. You can read my predictions below--I had to pick the final number of wins for every team and the playoff teams and the WS winner. I had Boston over Arizona for the World Series, so did pretty well there. Let's not talk about how much I blew it with Seattle, Washington, Cleveland, and Anaheim. Still, getting within 2 wins of the final tally for 9 teams seems pretty darn good. Oh, the Mortal Lock picks go like this--one for each league, have to be either over 90 or under 72 wins, every win you're off the final total you get penalized double.

TeamYour GuessActualDifferencePrediction NotesScorePlayoff Points
ARI92902League Champion2+2 +4
BOS92964Mortal Lock World Series Champion8+2 +4 +8 +16
DET86882Made Playoffs2
NYA94940Made Playoffs0+2
NYN90882Division Series Winner2
OAK85769Division Series Winner9
SDN89890Made Playoffs0
SFN72711Mortal Lock 2
SLN84786Made Playoffs6


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Monday, October 29, 2007

The Diamond Isn't a Pundit's Best Friend

While most people of late have slammed Family Security Matters (motto: we will scare the bejeebus out of you and your family--now vote Republican) for their Ten Most Dangerous Organizations in America list (yep, that's universities and colleges at #2, since our educational system isn't good enough to be #1 at anything), I'm here to point out they don't know diddly about baseball, either. For what should I find looking for things for solace in the world of Mets hurt that ended the 2007 baseball season but "The GOP should learn from the '07 Mets" by Gabriel Garnica.

As a Mets fan and a lefty (yes, I'll still admit both), I am not pleased.

It seems Garnica is a poor Mets fan and a poorer writer, for his second looped upon itself sentence is: "If any of you have any interest in baseball, you know that the 2007 Mets managed to turn last year’s magical, almost perfect, season into a mocking comparison of what they did this year."

OK, the Mets' 2006 season, so "magical and almost perfect," didn't even get to the World Series thanks to Yadier F---ing Molina of the One Good Swing of His Life. That makes them the third best perfect team in 2006. I guess for Garnica magic isn't pulling a rabbit out of hat, it's attempting to pull his head out of his ass.

He's no Doug Henning, though. I mean, late in the piece he asserts how the Mets are "Norm Thornberry," and I guess he's lucky he's discussing baseball as this mistake means he only has two strikes on him--the infamous symbol of early Mets frustration was Marv Throneberry. But why get names correct when your overall premise is so poor it would probably lose to the Rockies in the World Series?

For here's Garnica's big claim--the Mets are Republican. The Yankees are Democrats.

And several boroughs in New York heave a hefty oy in frustration. Everybody knows the Yankees are Republican through and through, from their sense you can just Bronx Bomb your way to victory by spending the most money to George Steinbrenner's illegal contributions to Nixon and that's leaving out the Irish tenor belting out "God Bless America" for seventh inning stretches into eternity.

Of course, Garnica's trick is to somewhat label each team properly and then mislabel the political party:

The Yankees and Democrats are celebrities, rock stars and movie legends. The Mets and GOP are van moms, home stars and legends of the daily grind. In the end, the Yankees and the Democrats are Camelot while the Mets and the GOP are the Gettysburg Address. Guess what? The Yankees and the Democrats are what some Americans are like, while the Mets and the GOP are what most Americans are like.

Of course we might ask George W. Bush what he thinks about how crucial the "legends of the daily grind" are to him and his electoral hopes:

Or we could ask all the kids without healthcare because Bush likes insurance companies better than children, or ask those fighting in Iraq who are no doubt predominantly not rich, or ask all the van moms who will make a bundle if the estate tax is permanently repealed.

Garnica manages to sully both Democrats and the Mets in one crappy column.

P.S. How in the world can Family Security Matters have any cred with rightwingers when its website banner only features a Mom and a Son? Or is that the point--Dad's away, we will protect you, in loco internetis?


Color Me Confessed

Originally uploaded by Mr Haug

As Joe ran away from the cops, it hit him why the guy at Home Depot said spray paint was better for graffiti projects.

Monday random Flickr-blogging explained.


Talk about Your Body Shots

Originally uploaded by bacigalupe

Outtakes from the period when Frida Kahlo worked as one of the Heineken keg-body girls.


Barb the Barb

Originally uploaded by (ariel)

Not to say he was always secretive, but here's a rare photo of wee little Dick Cheney's treehouse when he was a child.


Friday, October 26, 2007

Friday Random Ten

Peter Blegvad "Gold" King Strut & Other Stories
Old 97's "Bel Air" Wreck Your Life
Stephen Malkmus "Discretion Grove" Stephen Malkmus
Pearl Jam "Spin the Black Circle" Vitalogy
Belly "Feed the Tree" Star
Run On "Anything You Say" No Way
Liz Phair "What Makes You Happy" Whitechocolatespaceegg
Jack Logan "Graves Are Fun to Dig" Bulk
Salif Keita "Dakan-Fe" Folon...the past
Terence Blanchard "On the Verge" Bounce

The Klezmatics "Moroccan Game" Possessed

So perhaps our iTunes is possessed, as a single Klezmatics track makes an appearance for the second time in about 6 weeks. At least it's a great cut. Otherwise this list is largely B/B+ cuts saying, "Hey, you forgot about us!" Plus a cut I would want to skip and pretend we didn't own, another from MTVs greatest hits back when the M stood for music, and a coda of world music and jazz.


How Pillow Can You Go

For Dog Blog Friday: There's no too comfortable for a greyhound.


Thursday, October 25, 2007

Oops I Covered It Again

Something about pop songs in the hands of great guitarists--Richard Thompson does Britney, David Rawlings and Gillian Welch do Cyndi.

And we all get to have the fun we want.


We Live as We Dream, Alone

The noted critic (and terrific teacher) Hugh Kenner once half-joked that "the Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock" was the only good poem ever written by a grad student. A parallel claim might be made about Charles Burnett's Killer of Sheep, which he created on less than $10 grand while a film student at UCLA. Of course, Eliot had more success with his poem than Burnett has ever had with his film, which didn't even get a proper release until this year, 30 years after he filmed it in Watts only 12 years after the riots.

Plotless and pitiless, the film is, and one directly connects with the other. For the characters it presents don't seem to have forward motion, don't seem to have hope. They just get to be, from scene to scene, and every moment of possible freedom shuts down--characters not only fail to win at the horsetrack, they never even get to the park to place a bet. After awhile you don't even think about the film being shot in black and white--the world seems that colorless and grim.

That's not to say the film is unrelenting. We see children jump from rooftop to rooftop from below, and airborne they have a brief freedom that is scary and earned. We see a young girl make her own words up to sing-along with Earth, Wind, and Fire on the radio, playing with her doll, but we also know when she gets older those simple lyrical promises might leave her like her mom, in the kitchen primping for a husband too tired to notice her when he gets home. Mom does this in the reflective lid of a pan as she makes dinner; it's her only break, her moment for hope.

Maybe not her only. One of the film's most famous scenes has the wife and her husband (the film's titular character, and the film's steady-eyed matter-of-factness extends to the abattoir scenes in which slaughter seems merely the daily business, drained of blood) sharing a slow dance to Dinah Washington's powerful "This Bitter Earth." At first they move by the numbers--you can almost hear counting it's so lugubrious. But then they edge in a bit, the wife's hands grasping more than caressing her shirtless husband, and what you get is familiarity bleeding into desperate need. They do all this in front of window that leaves them backlit, but it seems more like void than sun outside; it's light as blight not light as bright. Of course the song ends, the clutch ends, the scene ends.

So yes, this is a film about black and white in black and white, but that's just one of the distances it maps. From us to others, from sex to sex, from ourselves to our work, from ourselves to ourselves. Killer of Sheep might not build, but it accumulates, a film uniquely human, and therefore uniquely painful.

(Images courtesy Milestone Films)

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Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Where All the Stalkers Are above Average

The Rockies in the World Series, igloos in hell (but not in Alaska, what with global warming), and now Garrison Keillor has a stalker. The AP reports:

Garrison Keillor has gotten a restraining order against a Georgia woman he claims has made telephone calls and sent him explicit e-mails and disturbing gifts, including a petrified alligator foot and dead beetles.

They've got some strange notions of how to pitch woo down in Georgia, but to the woman's credit, she did catch, slice, and petrify the alligator's foot herself, which proves some initiative, or as Keillor might have it, moxie.

Alas for the woman, Keillor was having none of it, and not just because it offended his Norwegian sense of decorum where flashing someone a saucy smile might be too outre. Heck, it could lead to dancing. Indeed, Keillor's filing said the e-mails and letters were often "disturbing, unintelligible and rambling," and in one, Campbell "graphically described making love to me."

The judge, needless to say, threw the book at the stalker Campbell, claiming no one in their right mind who had seen the mellifluously-voiced but otherwise all too apt for radio owlish Keillor would be able to write such an email. The judge ruled, "The emails merged the disturbing and graphic in a way that was unintelligible."


Tuesday, October 23, 2007

In My Broken Hearted Pagoda

Just not in the mood today, sorry. Worried about my in-laws, who have left their Escondido home twice in the past 2 days and if you watch the San Diego news, as I have been doing obsessively, disaster has been announced all around their house's area.

Meanwhile here I sit in cube-land trying to concentrate and work while a co-worker coughs so heartily, so much, it seems you need to test the office air for TB. When she talks, her voice is so low she makes Selma on The Simpsons by comparison sound like she could try-out for a castrati choir.

And the air in Santa Barbara, while not as ash-filled as Saturday--from our huge local fire from this summer, of all things, as there's still so much crud around that the fierce winds kicked it all up again--still seems thick and unpleasant, so simply breathing is no fun.

Note: I've left out the mysterious dime-sized overnight bald spot I got, which is truly odd given I've got hair so thick it looks like one big piece of plastic when it's too long. So it's off to the doctor, which all by itself can sour my mood.

UPDATE (10/24/07 9:46 AM): My in-laws are back in their house and everything seems ok for now so let's hope it stays that way.

And ahab probably nailed what my weird hair thing is about, although I'd like to blame it on lots of getting a new website up at work pressure and my dad passing away.


Monday, October 22, 2007

Into the Tape Spool I'll Be Fed

So should I be freaked out that someone at the Department of Homeland Security in Kansas City has me bookmarked on his or her Google Reader?

I love George W. Bush!


Things that Make You Go Homonym

Buy the Daily Sound a dictionary please, or at least get them to throw out all their Harlequin Romance Novels--check out today's headline.

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Clothes to Fine

Originally uploaded by coastercub84

Mort and Verna hoped they were a lock to star on an episode of "What Not to Wear."

Monday random Flickr-blogging explained.


A Whole New Meaning to a Slicing Ball Down the Line

Originally uploaded by kdmoo80

"Hi, I'm here for the Cleveland Indians...can you point me to the Indians, please?"


Paging Mister Freud

Originally uploaded by cartwheeld

I double dog dare you not to think something dirty about this one.


Friday, October 19, 2007

He's a Wild and Crazy President!

Friday's Fun Quiz! Your job, intrepid INOTBBers, is to decide which two moments of the following six were actually part of President Bush's Wednesday news conference (turns out the news is our president might just be crazy!). Let's hear it for that wild and nutsy Republican sense of humor! (Answers will be in the first comment)

number 1
Q Mr. President, following up on Vladimir Putin for a moment. He said recently that next year when he has to step down, according to the constitution, as President, he may become Prime Minister, in effect keeping power and dashing any hopes for a genuine democratic transition there. Senator McCain--
THE PRESIDENT: I've been planning that myself.

THE PRESIDENT: This is not my first rodeo. I mean, just because I could have FBI agents hogtie David Gregory and leave him in a bathroom stall in the Minneapolis airport doesn't mean I would do such a thing. Hehe.

number 3
THE PRESIDENT: But this -- we got a leader in Iran who has announced that he wants to destroy Israel. So I've told people that if you're interested in avoiding World War III, it seems like you ought to be interested in preventing them from have the knowledge necessary to make a nuclear weapon.

number 4
THE PRESIDENT: We made it clear we didn't agree. They passed it anyway. And so now, hopefully, we'll be in the process. That's why the President has a veto. Sometimes the legislative branch wants to go on without the President, pass pieces of legislation, and the President then can use the veto to make sure he's a part of the process. And sometimes being part of the process means making everyone know I am the process. So you play by my rules or go home. Look I'll cooperate and sign any legislation that I told them to pass in the first place. But if they come up with something on their own, that's not the process.

THE PRESIDENT: In other words, they're still out there, and they're still plotting and planning. So all we can do is watch, and wait. And it's in our interest to have the tools necessary to protect the American people, whether that's ways to shootdown flying saucers or waterboards.

THE PRESIDENT: I'm not a forecaster, I'm not a President, but I play one on TV.


Friday Random Ten

Joshua Redman "Yesterdays" Timeless Tales (For Changing Times)
Graham Parker "Discovering Japan" Squeezing Out Sparks
Percy Mayfield "Please Send Me Someone to Love" Martin Scorsese Presents: The Blues
Radiohead "True Love Waits" I Might Be Wrong: Live Recordings
Swales "Who's Dorothea" Pleasureland
Lou Reed "Tell It to Your Heart" Between Thought and Expression
Ben Vaughn "I Dig Your Wig" Mood Swings ('90-'85 & More)
Uncle Tupelo "The Long Cut" 89/92: An Anthology
Richard Buckner "Kingdom" Meadow
Lynn Harrell "Cello Suite No. 3 in C Major, IV. Sarabande" Bach Cello Suites

Helium "Blue Rain Soda" Magic City

When after all the urges, some kind of truth emerges indeed. The Parker and Uncle Tupelo are 2 all-time greats, that's a fine Ben Vaughn, and nothing embarrasses. What more could one randomly want?


Nigel Says "Ricky, I'm Home"

For Dog Blog Friday: It's all photo perspective: they're actually the same size (at least in Nigel's head).


Thursday, October 18, 2007

Further Fables of Francine Fishpaw

History makes strange bedfellows (unlike, say, the Minneapolis airport, which makes strange stallmates). This Friday would be the birthday of both LaWanda Page and Harris Glenn Milstead. My guess is as many of you are excited about this news as were excited by the Diamondbacks-Rockies NLCS, but that's because you don't know these two intrepid thespians by their names, but by their signature roles. Page played Aunt Esther on "Sanford & Son" while Milstead played Divine, John Water's redoubtable (not to be confused with Mrs. Redoubtablefire, of course) star. So I was thinking (really, it does happen sometimes!) it might be fun to imagine each in the other's role. There's Divine telling Redd Foxx to "Watch it, sucka!" And there's poor Wanda eating dogshit at the end of "Pink Flamingos." OK, only one of these changes is funny. Eating shit is never funny. Life's that way--and by way I mean full of shit-eating and unfunniness--sometimes. Just as it's actually true Page performed with RuPaul in the 1990s, which is just funny odd, not funny ha-ha. What a drag.


Wednesday, October 17, 2007

I Wanna See Blogs of My Dreams

If it's sound with Jackson Browne I'm going to post this photo I took last weekend down in Balboa Park as a way to say I'm late for my own blogiversary. Turns out it was actually back on September 15 that INOTBB celebrated its third birthday.

I'd like to thank my readers, both of you.

Now toggle that window, your boss is coming!


The News-Press Bugs Me

On our dog walk this morning we passed the News-Press boxes to see one of the top stories is headlined "Bacteria Linked to Many Deaths." All I can think is, "This better be a wire story or else someone in the newsroom is sure to get fired for not being sympathetic enough to the bacteria." After all, if it's humans versus organisms, we all know what side Wendy will be on.


Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Mission Recomplished

Here's the lead from a Washington Post story yesterday:

The U.S. military believes it has dealt devastating and perhaps irreversible blows to al-Qaeda in Iraq in recent months, leading some generals to advocate a declaration of victory over the group, which the Bush administration has long described as the most lethal U.S. adversary in Iraq.

We've won! We've beat the group we had to beat! So let's get the heck out of Dodge, no? Or are we fighting Sunnis and Shiites? You're not telling me we're actually over there just to be in the middle of someone else's civil war, are you Mr. Bush?

In the meantime we get this news from Reuters today:

Oil thundered to a new peak above $88 a barrel on Tuesday as investors eyeing supply concerns and tensions in northern Iraq extended the nine-dollar rally that started last week.

For let's not forget what Laurence Lindsay, then President Bush's senior economic advisor, said prior to the invasion of Iraq:

"Under every plausible scenario, the negative effect will be quite small relative to the economic benefits that would come from a successful prosecution of the war. The key issue is oil, and a regime change in Iraq would facilitate an increase in world oil."

It will also be good to hear how those who espouse the free market as the corrective balancing answer to all economic woes will try to spin this latest increase in the price of crude. That Reuters article says, "The record surge raised alarm bells for producer group OPEC, which blamed rampant speculation by big money investors rather than any shortage of supply." That is, supply and demand don't regulate the price of oil, those trying to make money off oil regulate its price. Or to put it in other terms--the richest of the rich have us by our oil-greedy nuts.

That article also points out the soaring prices of oil are just one problem. After all there's the "economic pressure from the meltdown in the subprime mortgage market." And then Business Day reports: "The gold price hit a 28-year high yesterday, with the precious metal's appeal polished by a weak dollar, record-high oil prices and geopolitical tension."

So, all will be just fine for those of us buying up gold and oil. I'm sure that's most of my readership.

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Monday, October 15, 2007

A Hot Time for Your Birthday

Originally uploaded by Petteri Sulonen

People look on as Amy's birthday cake candles get a bit out of control....

(just kidding, you're still younger than I am)

(All-Amy birthday Flickr-blogging)


Which Birthday Is the Mantis Birthday?

Originally uploaded by qazwasit

Even this Kingfisher has a present for you for your birthday....

(All-Amy Birthday Flickr-blogging)


I've Been Known to Panda

Originally uploaded by woodfold

Amy, here's hoping you don't find another birthday un-bearable!

(All-Amy Birthday Flickr-Blogging)


Friday, October 12, 2007

I Grow Old, I Growl Old...

You know you're old when,walking across campus for coffee you overhear a co-ed on her cell phone exclaiming, "So like last night there were 20 people in my room playing beer pong...."

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Friday Random Ten

Elephant Micah "Dream Feedback" Loose 4: Start Your Own Country
Archers of Loaf "Web in Front" Icky Mettle
Shane MacGowan & The Popes "The Snake with Eyes of Garnet" The Snake
Charles Mingus "Solo Dancer" Ken Burns Jazz: Charles Mingus
Pavement "Home" Westing (By Musket and Sextant)
Emmylou Harris with Fayssoux Starling "Beneath Still Waters" The Very Best of Emmylou Harris--Heartaches and Highways
Richard Buckner "Stutterstep" Impasse
SF Seals "Still?" What's Up Matador?
John Wesley Harding "Hitler's Tears" Why We Fight
Cornershop "Coming Up" When I Was Born for the 7th Time

Richard Thompson "Why Have My Loved Ones Gone?" 1000 Years of Popular Music [live]

Lots of class, two instrumental interludes, and two killers--"Web in Front" remains one of my favorite 2 minute shots of adrenalized rock and "Hitler's Tears" is as catchy as catchy pop gets, with the classic line "he was fascist before it was cool" to boot.


It's a Knick Knack, Nigel Whack

For Dog Blog Friday: Just tell me he's not thinking that we've got lots of bones inside of us, please.


Thursday, October 11, 2007

They Don't Call Them Superpoenas

Watching Keith Olbermann last night, getting even more upset about the rightwing bloggers (what do you expect) and Senators (Mitch McConnell's office has spread the lies it seems) attacking a 12-year-old who is lucky to be alive, I got to experience a perhaps even stranger moment when a commercial informed me that MSNBC was partially brought to me by "the Santa Barbara News-Press, serving the community since 1855."

I guess that's better than the tagline: "the Santa Barbara News-Press, serving the community subpoenas and cease-and-desist letters since 2006."

It's also an intriguing income model the N-P website has now. You can't see any content, really, unless you subscribe. But the website will happily provide you with a cheesy pop-up ad as soon as you open the homepage. So you get to see their advertising even if you don't get their content. (That is when there is content--go read Craig Smith to hear why only wire stories run about the Channel Island foxes Ms. McCaw under oath aches for.)


Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Lacking Logo Logic

Conservative bloggers have their knickers in a twist about Google, especially since it worked Sputnik into its logo for the 50th anniversary of the satellite's launch. The Los Angeles Times has the story, quoting conservative blogger Giovanni Gallucci, 39, a social media consultant from Dallas: "I understand these guys are scientists and engineers and they have their quirks and want to make sure people are recognized who might not normally be recognized . . . but why not celebrate the struggles that we've come through as a people?"

Now, it seems overcoming the Soviet Union's original advantage in the Space Race might be seen as a positive (especially as we now face the retirement of all those science teachers and risk our educational system going to pot again, but that's a different entry), and commemorating Sputnik is like honoring a kick in our scientific pants, but I guess not for Gallucci.

But ignoring that, there's this wonderful passage in the Times article:

The company, started in 1998 by two Stanford University graduate students, prides itself on progressive thinking. Google set up a $90-million foundation in 2005 to fund causes widely seen as liberal, including climate change and global public health.

Saving the environment and keeping people around the world healthy are liberal causes? Well, sign me up.


Monday, October 08, 2007


Doug Mientkiewicz throws up consonants in his own mouth a little trying to spell his own name while Melky Cabrera realizes his nickname isn't as cool as Mookie as the Yankees don't get to the World Series for the sixth straight year*. (In case you missed out, they lost in 2001, too.)

Suddenly it became clear to folks that it's A-Rod's odd new batting grip for the playoffs that keeps him from hitting as well as he does during the regular season.

Seriously, as a Mets fan there's only one thing almost as good as a Mets win--a Yankee loss. A lot of that ill-will comes from the era when I grew up, when rooting for the Mets might not have been hard, but seeing them win certainly was. Even in 1973 they were barely above .500 and more the poster children for the phrase "anything can happen in a short series" than anything else (it helped they had a rotation of Seaver, Matlack, Koosman, and a surprisingly good George Stone that year, too). In the meantime the Yanks went on that late 1970s run that people still can't shut-up about, to the point where poor John Turturro has to wear funny ears.

So I must admit I enjoyed watching the Yanks lose tonight. Sorry. I'm mean.

But I was right when I said Chien Mien-Wang in English means Tom Glavine--he even hit the last batter he faced tonight. What's more, the ticker at the time he left the game had the headline: "Wang gets chance to show true ability." I guess it all went wang for the Yankees tonight.

*CORRECTION: OK, the Yanks did get to the 2003 World Series, which they lost to the Florida Marlins. What's more, they saw something they liked in that series, and it's name was Pavano.


Egrets, I've Had a Few...

Friday I was walking around campus taking pictures I needed to take, as my job means I do everything anyone ever associated with marketing has ever done, and this guy/gal was about 10 feet away from me (and a road!) at one point. It's good to live in Santa Barbara.


Mr. Moo in June

If you look closely you'll find one of these hounds is mighty familiar. That's right, Mookie is Mr. June 2008. Order yours now.

And yes, he has been unbearable to live with since this came out. Went straight to his head.


Friday, October 05, 2007

I Got a Feeling I'm Going to Get a Lot of Grief

Some beyond belief play-off observations:

Next time he does commentary, look at Cal Ripken's head. Mighty big, no? Now tell me how Barry Bond's big head (just the outside part, folks) proves he did steroids. OR let's start a rumor that Ripken's consecutive game streak, proof of his hard-working good-guy-ness, was drug fueled. After all, one of the things we do know about HGH is that it helps with recovery time and healing.

Last night the Yankees learned 2 things about language. First, that Chien-Ming Wang in English means Tom Glavine. Second that Ross Ohlendorf in German means Scott Schoeneweis. For as General Buck Turgidson wisely said about another creature eager for apocalypse, "A Kraut by any other name...."


Who Knows What Teeth Lurk in the Mouth of Mookie

For Dog Blog Friday: And we wonder why Nigel seems a bit defensive at times.....


Friday Random Ten

Cordelia's Dad "Poor Man's Labor" Cordelia's Dad
Randy Newman "I Want You to Hurt Like I Do" Guilty: 30 Years of Randy Newman
Odds "Eat My Brain" Brain Candy (sdtrk)
Queen Ida "Home on the Bayou" Mardi Gras!
The Klezmatics "Moroccan Game" Possessed
Guided by Voices "Hardcore UFO's" Bee Thousand
Luna "Romantica" Romantica
T Bone Burnett "I Wish You Could Have Seen Her Dance" Twenty Twenty: The Essential T Bone Burnett
Dizzy Gillespie "No More Blues (Chega de Saudade)" (live) Ken Burns Jazz: Dizzy Gillespie
Damien Jurado "Tragedy" Rehearsals for Departure

Pavement "Summer Babe" (live) Slanted & Enchanted: Luxe & Reduxe

The Klezmatics kick this into a higher gear, and you can't complain with that Burett, Jurado, or Pavement cut. Our 19,948 songs of breadth show some depth this week.


Thursday, October 04, 2007

He Was No Chicken from Kiev

Friday is the 76th birthday, give or take a trombone, of Pavel Romanovich Popovich. If you say who, that just shows how far the mighty have fallen, and in Popovich's case, that's mighty far, a good 60+ miles from space. For you see Romanovich Popovich did not inspire the thrilling 1970s Milton-Bradley boardgame Which Witch? (or, in Ukrainian, Vich Vich?), but instead was a cosmonaut years before anyone in America even drank cosmos, and therefore he helped create the great cocktail race, which, of course, neither country won as both fell drunk long before the finish line (correct, Mr. Yeltsin?). Alas, some still long for the days when the Cold War referred to who had a better-iced shaker and M.A.D. stood for Mutual Assured Drunkeness, later to be followed by the Reagan innovation S.D.I.--the Shit-faced Drunk Initiative. Of course others long for this blurb to return to its focus. History is messy that way, Popoviching off, and leaving all of us with a a serious carpet cleaning bill.


Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Thanks, Ahab

And let this video be a bit of a sign of appreciation. Great song.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

A Watered Down Argument

Over at the essential Blogabarbara I got into a bit of a comment tete-a-tete with good old Nelville Flynn, who has been rumored to be Arthur von (of Physiology) Wiesenberger. I hated for it to be buried in a 50 comment dump, so I thought I'd bring it up for some air on my blog, too, if Sara doesn't mind.

First, here's Flynn's initial comment that set me (and to be fair, others) off:

Nelville Flynn said...
Wendy McCaw's fight belongs to every publisher in America.

It is a fight for standards, for credibility, for unbiased reporting at a time the public holds journalists in low esteem. Newspaper circulation and television news viewership reflect this steady erosion of credibility.

It is a fight for the future. Unions, which stand for archaic work rules, have hobbled our nation's march forward. They stand in the way of progress and innovation on the media. Wendy McCaw's fight is for all publishers struggling to adapt in changing times.

Does it cost money? Absolutely. But this is battle Wendy McCaw can't afford not to fight.

Luckily others pointed out that perhaps those union-won archaic work rules--minor things like a 5 day work week and 8 hour work day and child labor laws--might be sort of ok. So instead I commented:

According to Nelville, "Wendy McCaw's fight belongs to every publisher in America."

So when will all the other publishers in the country come to her side (which is really just their side, after all)? Is she just that much more a visionary?

OK, when will one other publisher?

I guess the best thing about owning a newspaper is you can say "white is black" enough times that someone might actually believe you.

Eventually Nelville Flynn chimed back in and said...

Many publishers have privately expressed their support to Mrs. McCaw.

Unfortunately, they are reluctant to speak out publicly. Many remain in thrall to that aging and increasingly irrelevant Brahmin caste led by Lou Cannon -- the priests who stand on the mountaintops and proclaim "Ethics! Ethics! Ethics!" as the ground slips away beneath their feet. Cannon, Roberts and the American Journalism Review clique have led newspaper journalism to the brink of destruction. Wendy McCaw is seeking ways to win back the public trust, to expand the platform for her journalism. Well-heeled unions and self-interested politicians are standing in the way, and the effort has not been cheap. However, Wendy McCaw believes that a free press is priceless.

I then replied:

Wendy McCaw in the News-Press (7/3/07): "Today the hue and cry of 'journalistic ethics' by your journalist elite, rather than being the noble words you assert, instead have become little more than the chant of an ancient priesthood long discarded by their former flock, our readers. Newspaper owners now realize these elitists were simply trying to preserve their caste which provided them with the sinecure of full employment without responsibility."

Nelville Flynn on Blogabarbara (9/29/07): "Many remain in thrall to that aging and increasingly irrelevant Brahmin caste led by Lou Cannon -- the priests who stand on the mountaintops and proclaim 'Ethics! Ethics! Ethics!' as the ground slips away beneath their feet."

So, Nelville--parrot, plagiarist, or Wendy herself?

You aptly say, "Wendy McCaw is seeking ways to win back the public trust, to expand the platform for her journalism." Her journalism? She might own the paper, but I didn't know her money entitled her to own journalism as well.


The Game's Exciting -- Wake Up the Announcers

Not to be bitter or anything, but does it seem like an insult to have to watch national baseball on "Braves Superstation" TBS to anyone else? I kept waiting for that damn chop chant to start in back of the deadly droning of Joe Simpson and Don Orsillo last night.

Then again, the paranoid part of me keeps thinking that Tom Glavine was an Atlanta plant, and Braves general manager John Schuerholz was just waiting to detonate him and the Mets' season when it would hurt the absolute most. After all, Glavine almost did go back and sign there the last off season. I'm just saying....


Monday, October 01, 2007

Muddle Relief

A tale of two seasons--imagine the line below on the Mets and not on the Padres:

91 ip, 98 k, 28 bb, 6-4, 2 saves, 34 holds, 2.08 era

Might have been nice, huh? Less Schoenweiss, less Mota. Maybe just one more lousy stinking win.

That means the Mets lost their shot at 2007 on November 15, 2006, when Omar Minaya sent Heath Bell, owner of the fine line above, and Royce Ring to the Padres for Ben Johnson (no, not the sprinter) and Jon Adkins. Johnson had 30 abs and Adkins pitched in one game for the major league club. Bell did everything he could to get the Padres to a play-in game today (alas, he can't play outfield and didn't get to Milton Bradley and tackle him before Bud Black did).


Phanning Phires

Originally uploaded by Schaffner

Tom Glavine practices just the best way to send the Mets season up in smoke.

Monday random Flickr-blogging explained.


Mittle Has Changed

Originally uploaded by Evil Panda

The young Mitt Romney at camp, practicing his political positions.


Orange You Glad I Didn't Say Fred Thompson?

Originally uploaded by elizabeth_rieg

Still upset that she wasn't chosen to be Dennis Kucinich's wife.


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