Thursday, February 22, 2007

FO Unwilling to Give it Up for Schilling

I really hate the fact that this has come up before the '07 season has officially begun. Selfishly, my biggest complaint is that this isn't right for the fans. I know that drama and baseball go hand in hand, but come on. Before we've even had a chance to get into things? Instead of watching Schilling take the mound or warm up in the pen with little warm and fuzzies in my tummy, I'm going to be thinking about his contract situation. Not fair! I want that to be the LAST thing on my mind. But, no. I wish it were totally against MLB rules for players to discuss these things publicly. And reporters should not be allowed to ask. Speculation and discussion are fine, but I don't want to hear about a difficult conversation between general manager extraordinaire and the man who put his health on the line to bring me and my friends a world series victory. Schilling pitches with his heart and soul. It's more than just a job and an ability to him. I don't want him to part ways with the Red Sox under these circumstances. It was awkward enough when Derek Lowe had to do (and during the '04 season, nonetheless).

Okay, so this is a business decision, right, Theo? Well, take a look out your window, son. Do you see a sea of great, capable pitchers out there? The last thing I heard, there was a drought. And droughts mean rations! Personally, I think he should be signed. Get it over with. But please, for the love of Mike, don't tell me about it.


Wednesday, February 21, 2007

El Guapo

I am fortunate enough to work for a company with lots of Red Sox connections and what-not. It all started when my company president, Marie Brown, launched a subsidiary called, "Brown House Books." Our first publication, a children's book called 86 Years: The Legend of the Boston Red Sox, was a huge success. It celebrated the 2004 World Champions, as well as provided a brief history of the team to kids. We received testimonials from Jim Rice, Johnny Damon (before he became a robot mutant), Stephen King and Tim Wakefield. Jason Varitek touted it during last year's Verizon Literacy Program and it won! One of my coworkers, who used to tend bar part time at Red Line in Harvard Square, handed a copy of the book off to one of Ben Affleck's friends (and frequenter of the bar). The friend gave it to Ben as a shower gift for his little girl, Violet. It then made it into the pages of People magazine. We are all very proud of this publication.

It seems that we have come to Chapter 2 in the Red Sox history of Brown Publishing Network. One of our editorial directors has a son who works as the marketing manager for The Nashua Pride. They just signed Rich Garces to a deal for at least one year. El Guapo wants to pitch again in the majors at some point. Evidently, he got his weight down to 230, so I think he's serious. I really liked that guy and I'm glad he's trying to make a come back. I wonder if this gives me any privilege, should I decide to get out to one of the games and watch him pitch. Preferably in killer seats!

I guess Jeter and A-Rod are no longer best buds. I saw that coming a mile away. When the Yanks first signed Alex, someone (I forget who - a New Jersey sports writer, I think) was quoted as saying that "A-Rod to the Yankees is like Bill Gates winning the Power Ball." I knew that the Yankees were due for the consequences of baseball hubris at that point. And so it began. I also remember thinking that there was going to be some serious tension between he and Jeter, despite the happy faces and hugs. At the time, I thought that Rodriguez was going to outshine Jeter and that Steincrabber was going to switch them, positionally. Funny enough, A-Rod just totally imploded. Anyway, I am sure that his lackluster performance has something to do with the "coolness" of their friendship. Maybe Derek thinks that it's going to rub off or something. Whatever.

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Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Story of the Week, As Far As I'm Concerned

At first I was really shocked, but I now think I just pity her.

Tony Blair Gets Sense Beaten Into Him Somehow

Ironic. Bush announces the troop "surge" just before Blair announces (or is planning to announce, anyway) troop withdrawl. Way to make the world hate us even more, Georgie. And where the heck are these troops "surging" from? Are there troop trees growing behind the White House that we don't know about? It's all very suspect.

Saturday, February 17, 2007

No Place Like Home

When is a "home page" going to stop being called a "home page?" The term seems a little outdated to me, is all I'm sayin'. You go to all these sites and some of them have very sophisticated content and navigation buttons, but there's always a link to "home" right there on the left. It's weird.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

The Skull

Probably way too soon and premature for discussion, but it appears that Mariano Rivera is somewhat miffed (as are some Yankee fans) that his contract has not been extended yet. Some think that it should be addressed before spring training this year, but Yankees front office has stated publicly that they have no plans to do so until after spring training. Mariano will be pitching during his option year and I have to admit that even I'm a little surprised that Steinpuke hasn't done anything about it yet.

I'm sure this is all getting blown way out of proportion simply because it's Mariano we're talking about here. My baseball brain has never even considered that he could close for any other team. I have this idea that he's cemented a deal with the devil for life. I don't think I'm wrong. The Yankees would be pretty stupid not to give him the extension. They've got the bucks, after all.

Meanwhile, what's going on with OUR closing situation?


Monday, February 12, 2007

Nothing Good Comes of Big Business Mergers

I knew this was going to happen. As soon as YouTube merged (or was bought by or whatever) with Google, all the cool stuff was going to have to come down.

One of my favorite little bits is a clip from The Young Ones called "Dr. Marten's Boots." It's a song performed by Alexei Sayle during an episode entitled "Oil," in which oil (naturally) is discovered in the basement by Vyvyan. I own all the episodes of The Young Ones on DVD, but sometimes I just like to be lazy and watch this excerpt from the show on demand, so to speak. Here's what I get now:

I know all about copyright infringements and everything, but I just feel like they stuck a pin in the balloon here. I'm the type of person who loves searching for rare bits from my childhood and adolescent years. YouTube presented a nice searchable catalog of this stuff and now my database is gone or nearing the end at least.

Friday, February 9, 2007

And On the Seventh Day, God Invented Flonase

Allergies be gone!

Thursday, February 8, 2007

Sullee No More

In very sad news, Sullee eliminated himself from the VH1 White Rapper Show this week. I parallel this to the feeling I have when the Red Sox fall out of contention. What's worse, I know that Persia, the rapper from NYC, will win. She's very good. She definitely deserves to win, but the irony here is too much. It also baffles me that John Brown, who evidently runs a business called Ghetto Revival (but has no idea what Ghetto Revival means and how offensive it is to people who actually live in the ghetto) is still in it. I sort of suspect that he also might win in a surprising twist of unwatchable fate, as his myspace page lists his residence as being in 2 places, one of which is Brooklyn.

I hope something will come of Sullee's career from all this.

Peanut Gallery Rant

I'm a fairly eco-minded person, but I've got a beef with hand dryers in rest rooms. I am a fan of them in theory, as they prevent the spread of germs (though, where's the proof?) and they save trees. However, the reality is, I have rarely met a hand dryer I liked. I would think that the manufacturers would make a superior product in order to convince all the paper napkin people to make the switch (when given the choice) or insist on the dryers (if that's even possible). Instead of planning to capture the minds and hearts of service station goers nationwide, most manufacturers put forth a pathetic model that emits a mere puff of cold air.

Personally, I like the kind of dryers that rip your skin right off with it's gusty might. The sort that blow you over with air pressure and heat. I don't like having to press the button more than once - and I don't see how this necessary repetition is a more sanitary option. There is nothing eco-friendly about the additional energy this causes, either.

While on the subject of rest rooms, I should also voice my disapproval with the lack of heat I usually experience when using one. And this isn't limited to the Vince Lombardi/Molly Pitcher/Woodrow Wilson types of places. My butt has made friends with some super icy toilet seats in very fancy shmancy restaurants. What's the deal? Bathrooms are not places where you go to put more clothes on, so why lower the temp? Is there really that much riff raff to discourage?


Wednesday, February 7, 2007

Ok, I think I've Had It

I've been reading a lot about an ugly issue which has been slowly
bubbling up to the surface. Description of said issue: Real Reasons
White People Like Barack Obama.

I had to examine my own personal support of Obama and I had to reassure myself that I wasn't jumping on some bandwagon for all the reasons I have been accused:
1. He's "safe" and "non-threatening."
2. He is handsome.
3. He is "articulate" (this one really pisses me off).
4. His mother is a white woman from Kansas and his father isn't truly
black, (though he is Kenyan) so he's "alright with the whites."

I have learned that true blackness is defined by being a decedent of
Western African slaves. To understand the perils of African Americans
whose parents and grandparents have experienced systematic racism.
Barack's father is from Eastern Africa. I appreciate the reasoning and
I understand what was described. I also think it takes a brave person
to write about it because it reveals a certain vulnerability to white
America and, by and large, white America is reckless with such things.

I can't help but wonder how Barack feels about all of this. Does he not identify as a black man? Should he feel ashamed of his "free ride" to the top because of his non-blackness? Does Obama owe everyone a big apology for having the unfortunate experience of being black, but not really?

Look, I GUARANTEE that white America cannot make the distinction
between Barack and other African Americans. To say that whites support him because he isn't really black is absurd. Why? Because white people are just too stupid and lazy to learn about his history. Trust me. The sophistication of this distinction is too keen for the mass of whites who support him. Please, don't give white folks this kind of credit, for we don't deserve it.

The real tragedy is that this issue - if it continues to swirl around - will create a greater divide between the races, and that's something we don't need. It also takes the spot light off of the real reason that THIS honky supports Obama: He is an incredibly capable leader who understands how to motivate people, shares my political views and offers a fresh perspective.

Read all about it:


and here,

and, most importantly, here.