Saturday, January 24, 2009


Just watched "Glengarry Glen Ross". For the first time, believe it or not.

It is, of course, deeply prescient of the current times. Anxiety predominates, from the first words to the end.

A great, great movie.

Overreaction Theatre

The fine folks over at Baseball Prospectus ( have finally confirmed that their 2009 Baseball Annual is done and should reach stores by Valentine's Day. The announcement comes along with the news that Keith Olbermann will be writing the forward, which sent several commenters on the site into a tizzy.

Keith Olbermann has been a SABR member for many years, and has written forwards and blurbs for numerous baseball books over the years. He currently is employed by NBC on "Sunday Night Football" and on MSNBC on "Countdown".

Apparently the fact that Olbermann's work on "Countdown" is political has set some readers over the edge. I have trouble grasping that. Really? You're going to get all hot and bothered over a FORWARD?

Now, I'm an Olbermann fan, so maybe I'm not the one to judge. But the Forward of a 700 page book of statistics and analysis? THAT's what you're angry about? Sheesh.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Facing The Book

Watching: "Ferris Bueller's Day Off"
Reading: "The Last Nine Innings", Charles Euchner

I've never been much of a Facebook person. I guess it's mostly just general unsociability. I set up an account for myself sometime ago, and tonight, for reasons I do not fully understand, I approved a couple of friend requests and then began linking from friend to friend, approving them willy nilly.

So we'll see where that goes.

"Life moves pretty fast. If you don't stop and look around once and a while, you could miss it."-Ferris Bueller

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Farewell, Mr. Kent,0,3490702.story

Jeff Kent retired today after a 17 year career. He's probably the best second baseman of the last two decades, and is pretty much a sure shot Hall of Famer.

A little disturbing-a NSA whistleblower is claiming that the NSA eavesdropped on a lot more conversations than previously thought.

The Oscar nominations came out. As usual, outside of the animated films, I have seen none of them. I am a little surprised they didn't nominate "Dark Knight" for best picture.

This is cute-a 11 month old got his father busted by calling 911. When the police arrived, they found the father's marijuana growing operation. This actually happened to me, except without the marijuana growing part. One morning, while waiting for my wife to finish dressing, I was watching my son play with the phone. I took it away from him, but 10 or so minutes later, the police were at our door. We reassured them that we were fine, but they still came in to make sure I wasn't beating my wife.

This is really interesting-after the tragic BART killing around the holiday, apparently the police took cameras from some witnesses. I have always wondered if they actually had the right to do this. According to this blogger, they really don't. As some of the commenters point out, it's not like most people are really going to test this theory.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Missed It By That Much

"I'm not the person I thought I was. And I don't know if I can live with that."

A secrettweet. ( I don't know who sent it, but I know what they meant.

That documentary PBS is running about comedy had its second portion aired tonight. I forgot, so I missed the first hour. I think that's the reason why I don't watch many television programs-I'm just too dumb to remember when they are on.

I finished Peter Gammons' "Beyond The Sixth Game", a well written, though sad, story of the dissolution of the 1975 Red Sox. I am now starting "You Can't Steal First Base", written (well, written for) former Philadelphia Athletic Jimmie Dykes. It seems to be another one of those "these kids today can't play as good as we did in my day."

I got to see my cousin Simon today. He's almost two now, and I gleefully let him lead me around from room to room. He's babbling up a storm, but not too much that I can understand. He is full of joy, though, full of energy and love. His raw earnestness, his insistence that he have what he wants, now, is purely human.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Catching Up With The Sox

While I was, you know, living my life, the Red Sox have been busy moving some bodies around. Along with signing The Lord of the Dance, Jonathan Papelbon, today, along with (The Other) Javy Lopez, they signed Our Man Youk for a four year deal, added Rocco Baldelli, because one oft injured outfielder just isn't enough, traded David Pauley for Randor Bierd, who sounds like a Lord of the Rings character, and traded David Aardsma to Seattle for Fabian Williamson. Williamson is probably the only Red Sox player named Fabian, and Aardsma is perhaps best known for being the first player, alphabetically, in baseball history.

So, anything else happen today?

Monday, January 19, 2009

Still Reading, Still Watching, Not Listening

Still Reading: "Beyond The Sixth Game", current issue of Esquire
Watching: "Pride And Perserverance", a Negro Leagues documentary on the MLB Network

I also read the three Calvin and Hobbes books over the weekend my wife uncovered: Authoritative Calvin and Hobbes, Essential Calvin and Hobbes, and There's Treasure Everywhere. We have more, but I was happy to pore through these three.

"To make a bad day worse, spend it wishing for the impossible."

My wife is funnier than your wife

SCENE: Overweight bearded male is driving his wife's car out of a Burger King parking lot. Poised, elegant wife is sitting next to him. They observe a number of gulls walking about the back of the parking lot. The gulls, unimpressed, watch the car go by, only belatedly walking out of its path.

MALE: They're getting brave. They didn't fly away.

WIFE: They're getting cocky. They're saying, "You saw what we did to that plane, right? Go ahead, bring it! We ain't afraid of no car!"


Sunday, January 18, 2009

Steven Pearcy, I want your job

Played more Guitar Hero tonight, doing vocals on "Round and Round" by Ratt. Besides taking me back to my youth, the computer thinks I did very well. Take that, Steven Pearcy.

So the Super Bowl, which as we all know is the most important event in the history of Western Civilization, is going to be between the Arizona Cardinals (!) and the Pittsburgh Steelers. Arizona beat Philly in a game close enough to send the Negative Nellies around here into paroxysms of rage. Again.

Towards the end of the game, Donovan McNabb's pass to Kevin Curtis fell incomplete on a fourth down play, pretty much sealing Philly's fate. At least part of the reason was that there was an Arizona defender essentially attempting to wear the same pants Curtis was wearing. The rule, in football, is that you are allowed to make contact with a reciever if you are trying to make a play on the ball. This defender couldn't have hit the ball if you gave him a Shiwala. Troy Aikman (I think), while watching the replay, said it was a "tough call".

No, Troy, it wasn't. It was pass interference. Granted, there's no guarantee Curtis catches the ball, and there's no guarantee Philly scores if he does. But a rule is a rule, and a penalty is a penalty.

That's one of the most frustrating parts of football and basketball-the tendency, near the end of a important contest, for the officials to "swallow the whistles" and call fewer penalties. If it's a penalty in Week One, it should be a penalty in the NFC Championship Game.

But hey-if the Eagles didn't fall behind 21-6, there's nothing to argue about, is there.

Thanks to Leo Laporte's Net at Night, I found It's like Post Secret and Blog Secret, only in Twitter form-140 characters or less. Ridiculously compelling reading.