Saturday, November 15, 2008

Post #1000

According to Blogger, this is my one thousandth post. One thousand of anything is a lot. One thousand whiny, boastful, neurotic, insecure, funny, sad, vitriolic, scary messages from somewhere within my cerebral cortex.

Now, if you've read all one thousand of them, God bless you. I don't think I even read all one thousand, and given the grammar I sometimes display, that is not hard to believe. But there they are, one thousand posts, from 2003-present, all about life, liberty, and the pursuit of good fitting pants.

My wife and I are going to the Borgata tonight to see comedian Brian Regan for our anniversary, which cynics will note was a full month ago.

So, as Jim Bouton once wrote, tell your statistics to shut up.

I should be back here at some point tomorrow.

Peace Out!

Not a Fan...

I'm not a fan of new music, typically. For me, mostly, if it isn't from a group that was popular when I was sixteen, I don't want to hear about it.

(That's 1987, in case you're keeping track.)

This, however, was a pretty cool discovery. Youngster Avril Lavigne kicks out the jams on Metallica's "Fuel", from a tribute show I somehow missed.

Master of Puppets

My boys, San Francisco's own Metallica, bringing the noise, Old School style, from the 1989 tour that still reigns as the most intense experience I have ever had.

Friday, November 14, 2008

It's Over

Bloody brilliant article in Business Week, an opinion piece about the failings in American business. Professor Shoshana Zuboff argues that Obama's victory heralds a change-that, like the character from "Network", we're mad as hell and we're not going to take it any more. Profit is no longer our sole master, and productivity is not its own goal.

I hope she's right.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

111 Reasons Why DRM Blows

(First 110 Reasons Edited For Space)

111. Because, ITunes, you refuse to acknowledge that music that I PAID for exists on my new computer.

Damn DRM.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Veterans' Day

In a sense, every day is veterans' day, like when you used to ask your parents why there was a Father's Day and a Mother's Day but not a Children's Day.

So, from the farmers who stood on Lexington Green and said, "No. We've had enough", to the soldiers in the Middle East who are trying to let tiny little flowers of hope bloom in the hard, dry soil of misery-I say thank you.

Thank you for, if nothing else, ensuring the fact that assholes like me get to blather on about nothing, or to accuse the President of heinous crimes, or to say basically whatever the hell pops into my head without fear of retribution. Thank you for being an example of decency. Thank you for, as Demi Moore's character says in "A Few Good Men", saying that nothing is going to happen tonight, not on your watch.


Monday, November 10, 2008

Keith Olbermann rocked tonight!

Keith Olbermann's Special Comment, from today's "Countdown". Please just read the whole thing and then please, if you disagree, tell me why.

A Special Comment on the passage, last week, of Proposition Eight in California, which rescinded the right of same-sex couples to marry, and tilted the balance on this issue, from coast to coast.

Some parameters, as preface. This isn't about yelling, and this isn't about politics, and this isn't really just about Prop-8. And I don't have a personal investment in this: I'm not gay, I had to strain to think of one member of even my very extended family who is, I have no personal stories of close friends or colleagues fighting the prejudice that still pervades their lives.

And yet to me this vote is horrible. Horrible. Because this isn't about yelling, and this isn't about politics.

This is about the... human heart, and if that sounds corny, so be it.

If you voted for this Proposition or support those who did or the sentiment they expressed, I have some questions, because, truly, I do not... understand. Why does this matter to you? What is it to you? In a time of impermanence and fly-by-night relationships, these people over here want the same chance at permanence and happiness that is your option. They don't want to deny you yours. They don't want to take anything away from you. They want what you want -- a chance to be a little less alone in the world.

Only now you are saying to them -- no. You can't have it on these terms. Maybe something similar. If they behave. If they don't cause too much trouble. You'll even give them all the same legal rights -- even as you're taking away the legal right, which they already had. A world around them, still anchored in love and marriage, and you are saying, no, you can't marry. What if somebody passed a law that said you couldn't marry?

I keep hearing this term "re-defining" marriage.

If this country hadn't re-defined marriage, black people still couldn't marry white people. Sixteen states had laws on the books which made that illegal... in 1967. 1967.

The parents of the President-Elect of the United States couldn't have married in nearly one third of the states of the country their son grew up to lead. But it's worse than that. If this country had not "re-defined" marriage, some black people still couldn't people. It is one of the most overlooked and cruelest parts of our sad story of slavery. Marriages were not legally recognized, if the people were slaves. Since slaves were property, they could not legally be husband and wife, or mother and child. Their marriage vows were different: not "Until Death, Do You Part," but "Until Death or Distance, Do You Part." Marriages among slaves were not legally recognized.

You know, just like marriages today in California are not legally recognized, if the people are... gay.

And uncountable in our history are the number of men and women, forced by society into marrying the opposite sex, in sham marriages, or marriages of convenience, or just marriages of not knowing -- centuries of men and women who have lived their lives in shame and unhappiness, and who have, through a lie to themselves or others, broken countless other lives, of spouses and children... All because we said a man couldn't marry another man, or a woman couldn't marry another woman. The sanctity of marriage. How many marriages like that have there been and how on earth do they increase the "sanctity" of marriage rather than render the term, meaningless?

What is this, to you? Nobody is asking you to embrace their expression of love. But don't you, as human beings, have to embrace... that love? The world is barren enough.

It is stacked against love, and against hope, and against those very few and precious emotions that enable us to go forward. Your marriage only stands a 50-50 chance of lasting, no matter how much you feel and how hard you work.

And here are people overjoyed at the prospect of just that chance, and that work, just for the hope of having that feeling. With so much hate in the world, with so much meaningless division, and people pitted against people for no good reason, this is what your religion tells you to do? With your experience of life and this world and all its sadnesses, this is what your conscience tells you to do?

With your knowledge that life, with endless vigor, seems to tilt the playing field on which we all live, in favor of unhappiness and hate... this is what your heart tells you to do? You want to sanctify marriage? You want to honor your God and the universal love you believe he represents? Then Spread happiness -- this tiny, symbolic, semantical grain of happiness -- share it with all those who seek it. Quote me anything from your religious leader or book of choice telling you to stand against this. And then tell me how you can believe both that statement and another statement, another one which reads only "do unto others as you would have them do unto you."


You are asked now, by your country, and perhaps by your creator, to stand on one side or another. You are asked now to stand, not on a question of politics, not on a question of religion, not on a question of gay or straight. You are asked now to stand, on a question All you need do is stand, and let the tiny ember of love meet its own fate. You don't have to help it, you don't have it applaud it, you don't have to fight for it. Just don't put it out. Just don't extinguish it. Because while it may at first look like that love is between two people you don't know and you don't understand and maybe you don't even want to know...It is, in fact, the ember of your love, for your fellow **person...

Just because this is the only world we have. And the other guy counts, too.

This is the second time in ten days I find myself concluding by turning to, of all things, the closing plea for mercy by Clarence Darrow in a murder trial.

But what he said, fits what is really at the heart of this:

"I was reading last night of the aspiration of the old Persian poet, Omar-Khayyam," he told the judge.

"It appealed to me as the highest that I can vision. I wish it was in my heart, and I wish it was in the hearts of all:

"So I be written in the Book of Love;

"I do not care about that Book above.

"Erase my name, or write it as you will,

"So I be written in the Book of Love."

Sunday, November 09, 2008

Andrew Sullivan says it best...

"What I wrote last Monday was not meant casually. Knowing that the Bush-Cheney-Addington axis will be forced out of power is an immense, slackening relief. I've felt compelled by politics these past few years in ways I don't like or enjoy. With men and women finally back in power I can trust to act reasonably and ethically and within the rule of law, I feel less hesitation in getting on with life."

Palin in 2012!

I haven't been blogging much at all since the election and the end of baseball season. I've had plenty of thoughts in my head, just not time or wherewithal to put them down here.

I really have got to get another job. I feel like my talent is being wasted where I am. Of course, now is probably the worst time in the last 80 years to be trying to find a job, even in my profession, which is in high demand. I think my problem is I really don't like my profession.

Yeah, that would have something to do with it.

So while I was sitting around cursing my fate (which other people call being alive), I was thinking about the following:

-I don't agree that Sarah Palin's political future is over. Kenneth O'Donnell tried to point out that all previous vice presidential losers have essentially sunk back into the woodwork, which is true. However, I don't think there has ever been a vice presidential loser this young, incredibly compelling, and popular. I have a feeling Caribou Barbie will be back.

-Scott Boras is smoking crack. " "When you think about the parameters of who should be the highest-paid player in the game, Manny Ramirez fulfills them all," Boras said " ( from

Uh, yeah. Except for "catching the ball", "showing up on time", "running",...stuff like that.

Boras also wants Jason Varitek to get a four year contract from the Red Sox. I love Jason Varitek. Every Red Sox fan loves Jason Varitek.

Jason Varitek hit .220 last year.

Jason Varitek does not deserve a four year contract, not even if he is the second coming of Johnny Bench.

Blog Secret!

Watch this space for Blog Secret, coming to a blog near you November 18.