Friday, September 29, 2006

Cause we are losers, baby, so why don't you kill us

The Braves lost again tonight. They lost to the Mets, 7-4.

Why was this loss more significant than all the others this season? BEcause it clinched the first losing record since 1990. After tonight's game, the Braves sit at 77-82, making it mathematically impossible to finish with a .500 record.

However, that wasn't the big story coming out of Atlanta tonight. No, the big story is that Pedro Martinez will miss the entire postseason due to a leg injury.

The Mets might not want to print up those World Series tickets just yet.

Of course, if they don't win it all, remember, just winning the division is a sign of a successful season. Just making the playoffs is enough.


Thursday, September 28, 2006

The 2008 nominees

In this corner:

When I first came to your planet and demanded your homes, property and very lives, I didn't know you were already doing so, willingly, with your own government. I can win no tribute from a bankrupted nation populated by feeble flag-waving plebians. In 2008 I shall restore your dignity and make you servants worthy of my rule. This new government shall become a tool of my oppression. Instead of hidden agendas and waffling policies, I offer you direct candor and brutal certainty. I only ask for your tribute, your lives, and your vote.

From the Phantom Zone, KNEEL BEFORE ZOD!

And in this corner:

"Our great country is in a terrible downward spiral. We're outsourcing jobs, bankrupting social security, and losing lives at war. We need to focus on what's important-- paying attention to our children, our citizens, our future. We need to think about improving our failing educational system, making better use of our resources, and helping to promote a stable, safe, and tolerant global society. It's time to be smart about our politics. It's time to get America back on track."

He's from New York, he's got a fever, and the only cure is more cowbell:

The edge: Walken. Today is a day for more cowbell.


No, it's not the average wage or the cost of a pack of diapers.

It is the estimated value in 2005 of one hour of volunteer time. The total dollar value of volunteer time for 2005 is estimated at $280 billion.

Charitable organizations most frequently use the value of volunteer time for recognition events or communications to show the amount of community support an organization receives from its volunteers.

Coming up is Hands On Atlanta Day, on Oct. 7, which will utilize almost 17,000 volunteers all across the metro area.

If one were to volunteer 40 hours a week, for a year, that total would come to over $37,000.

Circling the Drain

I didn't realize this until this morning, mostly because his column ran last week, but Jason Whitlock is no longer with ESPN Page 2.

Full details, from Whitlock's point of view, printed Tuesday.

Oddly, no references on ESPN's site.

I've not agreed with his points of view on several occasions - his constant praise of Jeff George, for example - but he does offer different and independent points of view that definitely brought something to the table for Page 2.

Page 2 used to be pretty decent in its content. Now all that's left seem to be Sportoons, I-hate-the-Yankees columns, and rambling four-hour chats with Bill Simmons that seem to deal more with L.A. people-watching than actual sports.

The only thing now that seems to be mildly entertaining is the occasional TMQ, but that starts to drag a bit when you get to page 12 and realize how much more is left.

If you're going to be offbest, then keep it original and keep it short.

ESPN Mobile gets sacked

ESPN Mobile shutting down.

That didn't even last a year. I can't say i'm surprised. I thought it was a bit over the top in trying to pack everything they wanted to pack into such a setup - and it looks like it's time for operations to shut down. It probably also didn't help to have so much advertising coming into your phone, either.

Chalk it up as another failure for the House of Mouse.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

I believe.....

Courtesy of Blue Collar TV, my feelings this afternoon while driving:

I believe.......if someone doesn't wave at you after you let them on the road, you have the right to get under 'em, get 'em loose, and put 'em into the wall.

Of course, I type this as I watch Jeff Foxworthy on "Top 5 Reasons You Can't Blame Bobby Cox for winning 1 World Series."

What'll ya have?

So much alcohol, so little time.

Courtesy of Metroblogging Atlanta.

Another list here.

Booze and self-love - I'm really being high-minded on my postings today.

Elmo Gone Wild

Some things just can't be made up.

Somebody thought this was a really good idea. That somebody needs to get out of the house more often.

An online resource for fuel

I use it quite a bit, but there are links to other areas in the country to see their current gas prices.

For example, right now:

Atlanta: $1.97.
Brooklyn, NY: $2.48 on Kings Hwy.
Flushing, NY: $2.55
Kenner, LA: $2.05 (across the river from NoLa)
Manassas, VA: $2.08
Mesa, AZ: $2.16

Each state/metro area is a sub-domain of

One more thing I forgot to mention yesterday - with the average gas and oil price dropping, and a lot of other good economic news, and more evidence of a soft landing, there may now be the possibility of a Republican GAIN in Congress instead of a loss, as a lot of races are tightening up or even flipping based on recent events.

If that happens.......we might see Keith Olbermann's head explode live on TV. That is, if we watched his show.

UPDATE: Looks like I wasn't the only one writing about this...again.

Monday, September 25, 2006

I've got a fever

Screw it, Ace is out of town anyway, so I'll run with it.

The Standard & Poor's 500 (up 11.59 to 1,326.37) index added 0.9 percent and knocked out its 2006 high from May, closing at its best point since Feb. 2001.


The Dow Jones industrial average (up 67.71 to 11,575.81) added 0.6 percent, ending within 150 points of its all-time high of 11,722.98, hit on Jan. 14, 2000.

One other thing: crude dropped under $60/barrel today. Gas in Atlanta today: $1.98/gallon.

Beacuse the only more cowbell.

More than a game

I don't plan on moving from the television tonight.

I plan to watch every minute of Monday Night Football tonight. Haven't done so for the first two weeks, but will definitely watch tonight.

Part of me is excited to see the Saints back in New Orleans, for the home opener, against the Falcons, their longtime rival. That part isn't sure who to root for - the Falcons are now my hometown team, but it's hard not to root for the Saints. It's good to see the hometown team return, after a summer that was not as bad as we all feared, and hope it is a harbinger of good things to come as more people return. It's good to hope that the recovery continues, and it's good to feel like things continue to return to normal.

Part of me is also not remotely ready to watch this game. Not ready to move on, not ready to forget, not ready to fall into the trap of thinking everything will be OK in the area with so much - Chalmette, New Orleans East, Lakeview - still looking like parts of Iraq, with many industries and business still shut down, with many people still far-flung across the country. I don't really know how I will react when they show the Superdome for the first time. I don't really know how I'll react to the references of everything from last year. And I don't know if I'll be able to sit through those tributes and flashbacks.

But I suppose if the Saints win this game to go to 3-0 and sole possession of first place, then anything truly is possible. Even if the Saints get blown out, it's still a victory that the game can be played in New Orleans at all.

Tonight's feature really is more than just a game.

Week 3 Musings

This will be a short list, because I didn't watch as much as normal.

  • -The Giants should just go to the K-Gun all the time. They do much better late in the game running the no-huddle that they do in their regular offense. There is no way they should have scored 27 points in the 4th quarter. If they hadn't been so dreadful in the first half, well, who knows.
  • Will Chris Simms play better now that his spleen has been removed? That was a helluva hit - gotta admire the hustle to get in the end zone, but, damn.
  • Greg Jennings of Green Bay will go to the Pro Bowl in the next three years.
  • Don't get excited because the Packers beat the Lions. Florida State would beat the Lions.
  • Tom Brady sure seems to whine a lot more when they don't get all the calls.
  • The Jets have surpassed the win total I predicted they would have for the whole season. I'll begrudgingly give credit - even though it was the Bills, a road win is a road win.
  • Did you expect Mark Brunell to start with 22 straight completions?
  • Frank Gore's fumble at the 1-yard line might be the most important play of the year - a sure 7 points for the Niners by their up-and-coming back turns into a fumble and a 99-yard touchdown for Philly. It might send the Eagles on a tear after last week's disaster and completely destroy the Niners' early confidence.
  • The Bengals are 3-0. The temperature in Hell is dropping.
  • The Jaguars blew too many opportunities today. They will regret it when they have to go on the road in January, if they even make it to the playoffs.
  • Dear Jeff Fisher: Start Vince Young NOW. Please stop subjecting us all to the sight of Kerry Collins interceptions.

Sunday, September 24, 2006


Well, yesterday was my second week (of two) working on a new house as part of Habitat for Humanity. This year, the Bank's Volunteer Netowrk is working with the Atlanta affiliate to build a house in Thomasville, right near the lovely Atlanta Federal Penitentiary, so it was much different than last year's build in Gwinnett County (suburbia).

Last week, I was wokring on the house as part of the Team Atlanta Leadership Team - each week is being sponsored by a different line of business within the bank. However, the second week was sponsored by Business Capital, so that meant I would work on two Saturdays.

The first week involved building the walls in the warehouse, bringing them to the ste, and putting them up. Yesterday involved putting on the roof, windows, and siding. As I was not feeling well I decided to not get on the roof, as I normally do on these builds. I opted to do the siding for the house instead.

We started work around 8 AM. Around noon, as I was putting up siding, my thumb decided to introduce itself to my hammer. I put some ice on it for a few minutes, and ate the lunch that showed up around the same time I was being a klutz. Since it still was hurting and swelling after lunch, I called it a day, since we had enough people who could finish.

So, now I have to type a bit slower. Still swollen and sore today, but not broken, so that's a good thing. It's also a good thing that I operate a remote control with my other hand anyway, so my ability to click through football games is unaffected.

Friday, September 22, 2006

The Stone Age

It's now being alleged that Pakistan was threatened in the wake of 9/11 with being "bombed back to the Stone Age".

Which has been denied by everyone in the current administration already.

"The intelligence director told me that [Armitage] said, 'Be prepared to be bombed. Be prepared to go back to the Stone Age.' "

Richard Armitage.

Yes, THAT Armitage. The same one who was the actual leak in Plamegate.

Feel free to comment on this amazing coincidence.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006


If Democrats retake the House, Charies Rangel of NY will chair Ways & Means. Want to know what he thinks about your taxes?

Via NRO, originally sent from Rep. Boehner's office:

Rangel's accession to the chairmanship of the committee would likely end six years of tax cuts by the Republican- controlled Congress. He said he "cannot think of one'' of President George W. Bush's first-term tax cuts that merit renewal.

(Taken from an interview with Bloomberg News.)

Which tax cuts, you ask?

  • Child Tax Credit
  • Marriage Penalty Relief
  • AMT Relief
  • Death Tax Relief
  • Tax Relief for the Families of Fallen Soldiers
  • Lower Tax Rates on Capital Gains & Dividend Income
  • Work Opportunity Tax Credit
  • Tax Free 529 Accounts for College Savings
  • Saver's Credit
  • Higher Pension / IRA Contribution Limits
  • Tax Credits for Hybrid Vehicles
  • Tax Credits for Alternative Fuels
  • Charitable Giving Deductions

Not to mention the decrease in income tax rates for every single bracket, bottom to top.

No mention by Rangel, of course, about cutting spending, which is the real need. Can't snip those entitlements.

Even with the cuts, federal receipts are increasing much more than anticipated, so having the government cry poverty is a bit ridiculous.

So, if you have no family, don't save anything, don't work, don't want to work, and make very little, you're OK.'re screwed and a Democratic House will mean you pay a lot more in taxes, because a lot of these cuts will disappear or sunset automatically.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Was Garo Yapremian Unavailable?

The Falcons have signed 46-year old Morten Anderson to handle their field goal kicking duties.


The good: He is the second-highest scorer in NFL history, kicking mostly in domes and, whaddaya know, the Falcons play in a dome!

The bad: HE'S 46 YEARS OLD!

From what I can tell, Michael Koenen, who has been handling FG's, punts, and kickoffs, will handle the longer FG attempts, and Anderson will be utilized for the short-to-medium kicks - 40 yards and under.

Considering he was born in the 1950's, this will be an interesting experiment. Will he try to stick around now to be the oldest NFL player ever?

Rental reflections and recollections

I have always rented.

From days in Stuyvesant Town, to summers during college, and after college throughout Atlanta, I've always been a renter.

For the past couple of years, we've rented a house instead of an apartment, while trying to navigate through the ownership process.

I've learned that there will be items you find in your past that you never knew existed - because you thought something was closed, or because something was fraudulent.

I've learned that trying to assemble conference calls between insurance agents, appraisers, sellers, mortgage processors, and closing attorneys is a process eerily similar to chasing chickens.

I've learned that even if you spend 100 hours poring over numbers, that nothing is set in stone until the papers are signed.

I've re-learned some of the calculations that will probably be very handy in future classes at Robinson.

I've learned that it's very easy to access tax records.

I've learned that this process is probably the most tortured and yet most rewarding material item around.

I've learned that there is no way in hell I want to work in the mortgage business.

Lastly, I've learned that even if you do a superhuman amount of effort in gathering information, connecting people, filling out forms, and clearing items, that something will always come back to bite you. In this case, it was the one item that we couldn't affect because it was left over from the previous sale of the property.

Today, we've stopped renting.

I'm going to leave now, so that we can go to the closing attorney's office and sign all the papers. I'm writing this now, because I'm pretty sure when I get home tonight I won't be able to type very much after signing as many documents as I expect to sign. I hope to post a picture later, if Blogger decides it wants to behave by then.

Monday, September 18, 2006

Sith Squirrel

Saw the link on NRO to AnalogKid, which is where I got the picture.

Always beware of the flying squirrel-kick.


That's how much a gallon of regular unleaded costs now at the Kroger down the street from where we live.

Less than ive months ago, when I started writing on this item intermittently, gas was $3.08 per gallon.

A 98-cent drop in the price of a gallon of gas. That "new floor" of $2 I wrote about might not be a floor after all, but a waystation.


I didn't.

Is it a short-term drop or a long-term correction? I don't know. Mideast issues could flare up, storms and hurricans can flare up, terrorist and guerrilla attacks can happen again, but we've also had a huge increase in supply which won't even be on the market for another couple of years and are looking more seriously than ever before at alternative energy resources.

So what will happen?

The only response I have is the one I hate the most - I don't know. If you'd asked me if I thought gas prices would drop a dollar in a few months I would have thought you were crazy.

All I do know is that the lower gas prices will leave the average consumer with a fatter pocketbook. A fatter pocketbook means a happier consumer not inclined to vote people out of office.

Week 2 Musings

Round 2, posted late because I was busy assembling a baby bed yesterday.

  • Any team that gives up over 300 yards rushing should not be bet on for the rest of the season. Tampa Bay did just that yesterday in a 14-3 loss that wasn't nearly as close as the score indicated.
  • Fantasy stats can be overrated. Chris Simms would have been a great fantasy play with 313 yards passing. Watching him, though, was an entirely different story, as several passes were batted down, the offense still could not score a touchdown, and Simms looked like a deer in headlights. He might lose his job sooner than thought.
  • I'm not a Jets fan anymore, but I will say they showed some pluck in trying to stand with New England yesterday. They just need a QB who can throw the ball more than 15 yaards consistently - both of Pennington's long TD tosses yesterday were short throws broken by the receivers.
  • After yesterday's comeback win, I feel a lot more confident in my Giants division pick.
  • Good to know that Culpepper has decided to pick up right where he left off from his stinkbomb in 2005. Losing at home to an undertalented Buffalo squad? Seven sacks? Barely avoiding a shutout? Maybe they were a little overrated after all.
  • Payback's a bitch, isn't it, T.O.? Out a month with a broken finger. Have fun on the exercise bike.
  • Fresh off last week's drubbing, the Packers switched gears this week in choosing to lose a different way - blowing a lead to the Sainta. I think week 4 will be of the missed-FG-at-the-gun variety - I can't see them losing to Detroit.
  • Memo to Roy Williams - Don't quit your day job. Being a psychic is nto a good calling for you. Unless you meant 4 instead of 40.
  • The Raiders are on a bye next week. I think the opening line has them as three-point underdogs.
  • You know it's bad in Oakland when the Jeff George rumors start again.
  • Chargers vs. Titans this past weekend was the pro equivalent of Texas vs. Rice.
  • Glad that all the money spent for the Redskins' coaching staff is getting the desired results. Wait, 0-2 wasn'tdesired?
  • The shock isn't that the Colts dropped over 40 on Houston. The shock is that Houston put up 24 on the Colts in return. I know it was garbage time, but three touchdowns in 12 minutes isn't a great way to close someone out.
  • Speaking of those TD's, once again you have a case where the fantasy numbers don't match the real game. David Carr threw for 219 yards and 3 TD's. Quite good for fantasy owners, but a terrible game in reality as it was never close.
  • Last thought of the day: I'm glad the football is returning to New Orleans. I'm glad it will be featured on Monday Night for a national audience. But did anyone think it would be a clash of first-place, undefeated teams? Me neither.

Friday, September 15, 2006

Doing good things for once

So, a long week is over. Time to relax, right?


Working on a Habitat house this Saturday and next Saturday. Hopefully I'll feel a little less stressed out about things after whacking a hammer and putting up walls.


Well, the Braves' streak of division titles officially ended Wednesday, and in all likelihood the Mets will clinch the division tonight in Pedro's return appearance.

I did realize that they are clinching earlier in 2006 than in 1986 - in 1986 they did not clinch until Sept. 17 despite amassing 108 wins.

On top of that, the Braves have not gone without winning the division since 1990. So being the retrospective person I am, I was thinking about what was different then and started a list:

  • Rickey Henderson has just become the all-time stolen base leader with 939. The record is now 1406, an increase of 50%.
  • Ken Griffey, Jr. was a rookie. This was also the rookie season for Frank Thomas, Curt Schilling, David Justice, Tino Martinez, JOEY (Albert) Belle, and Luis Gonzalez.
  • Only two players hit 40 home runs - Ryne Sandberg (40) and Cecil Fielder with an out-of-nowhere 51 homers.
  • Davey Johnson was fired and Bud Harrelson was hired. Immediately after the firing, the Mets won 11 games in a row. Despite the turnaround, Pittsburgh wins the first of three consecutive division titles before losing to eventual champ Cincinnati, led by "Nasty Boys" and future flameouts Norm Charlton, Rob Dibble, and Randy Myers.
  • Ex-Mets Gary Carter and Keith Hernandez retired in desolate locations - San Francisco and Cleveland. Bill Buckner also retires, from Boston, after three years with California, then Kansas City.
  • The Yankees finished with the worst record in the AL East, at 67-95. Amazingly, this is glossed over on the Yankees' website. George Steinbrenner is suspended for "life" thanks to Howie Spira - which turns out to be two seasons. The only bright spot is rookie Kevin Maas and his 21 homers - who is a raging disappointment thereafter - and Andy Hawkins' no-hitter - a 4-0 loss thanks to three eighth-inning errors. On the bright side, the manager was named Stump.
  • Dave Stewart won 20 games for the fourth season in a row. He would never win more than 12 again. He was overshadowed in 1990 by teammate Bob Welch, who went 27-6, teammate Dennis Eckersley, with 48 saves and a 0.61 ERA, and by Roger Clemens, who went 21-6 and led the AL in ERA at 1.93, but imploded during the ALCS against Oakland.
  • Greg Maddux won 15 games, for the third year in a row during a streak that would last 16 seasons.
  • Bobby Thigpen set the single-season saves record at 57, destroying Dave Righetti's old mark of 46 saves from 1986.
  • Nolan Ryan throws his 7th no-hitter and his 12th 1-hitter. He also wins his 300th game.
  • Tim Leary barely avoids losing 20 games for the Yankees, going 9-19.
  • No one had 200 hits.
  • George Brett won the AL Batting title, becoming the only man at that point with batting titles in three different decades.
  • At the end of 1990, Barry Bonds had 117 home runs - he now has 732 and about 50 more pounds. He won his first MVP award.
  • Julio Franco was in his ninth major-league season.
  • Darryl Strawberry, in his last season as a Met, hit 37 HR and 108 RBI before declaring he wanted to be the richest player in baseball and left for Los Angeles. Oops.
  • Sammy Sosa hits 15 HR in his first full season for the White Sox, after being traded by the future President. He would be traded again and magically find big muscles and tops of champagne bottles.
  • A Bush was in the White House and we were worried about oil prices that could reach (gasp) $40 A BARREL! because Saddam Hussein commits state-sponsored terrorism by invading Kuwait. Oh wait, that was an act of war. My bad.
  • By the way, it is currently $64 for a barrel of oil. And that is after a 20% drop in the last month.
  • The World Wide Web debuts.
  • Germany is reunited.
  • Nelson Mandela freed.
  • The USSR dies.
  • Buster Douglas defeats Mike Tyson. Evander Holyfield then beats the snot out of Buster Douglas.
  • David Dinkins was sworn in as New York City mayor, beginning one of the high periods in the city's history.
  • Marion Barry, another shining example of a big-city mayor, busted in a crack sting. The bitch did set him up, though.
  • Atlanta is chosen to hsot the 1996 Summer Olympics.
  • David Souter named to SCOTUS.

Feel old now?

So do I.

Feel free to add more.

Thursday, September 14, 2006


Watching the Colbert Report - what is Bill Simmons doing on the Colbert Report?

Aside from plugging his book and not being too funny.


Wednesday, September 13, 2006


I hate stupid people.

I have hated stupid people all my life.

I can't stand stupid people.

And yet, today seemed to be filled with absolutely nothing but stupid people. Stupid people on the phone, stupid people writing e-mail, stupid people in the hallway, stupid people on the street.

The multiple episodes of mind-numbing bureaucracy I had the pleasure of experiencing today were enough to make me want to throw things out the window. With clients, internal contacts, and outside companies not related to work, the lack of responsibility was utterly amazing.

It's times like these that make me want to be a full-time poker pro and not have to deal with stupid people in this setting - I'd rather take their money and do something I enjoy.

I should make it a goal to be a poker pro by the time I'm 35. A poker pro with a MBA. At least I'll be better trained in probability statistics!

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Voting Returns

As I am stuck on the computer and in front of the TV studying anyway, I might as well post on primary returns every so often as well.

Chafee 53.7% - 29814 votes
Laffey 46.3% - 25705 votes

Dammit. That one is over. Hoping Whitehouse can knock out Chafee now in the general election.

MARYLAND DEM Senate 34.1%
Cardin 44.7% - 67533 votes
Mfume 37.1% - 55968 votes

The Maryland race is still a toss-up but has spread a little. A Mfume win gives Michael Steele a better shot in the general election.

Going to bed now as I'm done studying.

Last update: 11:21 PM

Update on Phone march

What campaign?

The campaign I wrote about yesterday.

In trying to call a few times throughout the day, I got busy signals several times. Hopefully that means it's been loud enough for Senators to get the message.

Good effort. Thanks to anyone who read here and called in.

Now, home to watch poll returns.

Pats and Jets, at it again

Just so I'm clear on the whole saga:

1) Parcells leaves the Pats for the Jets.

2) Curtis Martin leaves the Pats for the Jets.

3) Bill Belichick leaves as HC of the NYJ after one day to coach the Pats.

4) Pats win three Super Bowls.

5) Eric Mangini leaves the Pats for the Jets, but since they've won three titles, they don't really care.

6) Pats file tampering grievance against Jets as part of the Deion Branch escapade, even though THEY TRADED HIM YESTERDAY.

Have I covered everything?

Memo to the Pats: You treated Branch like crap, fined him 3/5 of his salary, and were able to get a first-rounder for him. Yes, he got his money, but it's from Seattle, not New England.

Let it f***ing go.

Girls Gone Wild Gone Bad

'Girls Gone Wild' firm fined $2.1 million

For the record, I bear no relation to the head of the firm mentioned in the article. The one I'm related to lives in Iowa, not Los Angeles.

And no, I am not going to link to them.

For the charges being mentioned, I'm thinking $2.1 million doesn't really seem like a steep fine or restitution. I would imagine another zero being at the end of it, depending on the company's balance sheet, would send a better message. Maybe even two zeroes.

On the bright side, maybe it means they only run 6 commercials an hour on Comedy Central instead of 10. I'm sick of those commercials.

Stay off drugs

I wasn't planning on writing anything about hockey for a while. Even moreso, I wasn't going to write any stories about Islanders because, well, they are a laughingstock and I'm in the camp of another non-playoff team in the Thrashers.

But this story is too hard not to acknowledge:

DiPietro's record 15-year deal will pay him $67.5 million

Not one year. Not five years. FIFTEEN YEARS!

For a goalie who was only 30-24 last year with a save percentage of only .900 and a goals-against average over 3.0.

For a goalie with a career record of 58-62-8.

And yet some people wonder why the franchise is a laughingstock.

Nice job, Garth. Way to control the pocketbook, Chuck.

No wonder Computer Associates was knocked over by the SEC.

Somewhere, Neil Smith is laughing his ass off right now.

Dolan Fired!

No, not that Dolan.

Not that Dolan either.

The other one. Peter Dolan fired by Bristol-Myers Squibb. He were dismissed this morning based on the recommnendations from recent federal inquiries.

Hey, if one can be fired, perhaps there is hope that the other ones can go as well and messes like Cablevision and the Knicks have some sanity restored.

More poker links

On a different note than the earlier posts - some interesting links: - a page detailing freerolls across a whole bunch of different poker sites. Some require initial deposits. Some don't.

The Tao of Poker - Lotsa pictures, most of which won't be seen on ESPN and several of which might appeal to a certain demographic reading this post.

Poker Source Online - Great for finding out about free gifts, free matching money, and other promotions with special codes. Looking some of them over, they seem incredibly easy to attain - especially Party Poker. - I wish this class was available when I was in college - a class, for COLLEGE CREDIT, at the University of Richmond. Of course, I also wish I had figured out the game about ten years earlier - maybe it could have helped pay tuition! - I forgot to link to them in my last post.

Monday, September 11, 2006

PokerPPA Phone March on Capitol Hill Scheduled for Sept. 12

I received this note yesterday. I am re-posting in its entirety so that if you want to take action tomorrow, you can do so as well.

On September 12th the Poker Players Alliance with the support of leading poker blogs and forums,, Wicked Chops Poker and others are organizing a “Phone March” on Capitol Hill. From 9:00 AM Eastern Time, until 5:30 PM Eastern Time on Tuesday, September 12th, we are asking all PPA members and anyone interested in defending poker to call this toll free number, 800-289-1136 and be patched through to one of your two U.S. Senators in Washington D.C.

When you call the 800 number you will hear a recording from fellow PPA member Greg “Fossilman” Raymer and then you will be prompted to enter your five digit zip code so you can be directed, free of charge, to your Senator’s office.

Note: The 800 number will only be active between 9:00 AM EST and 5:30 PM EST on Tuesday September 12.

Key points you should make:
* I am voter in your state.
* I strongly oppose any legislation that would prohibit online poker, and urge the Senator to vote against such legislation.
* Poker is a skill game enjoyed by 70 Million Americans.
* The Senator should seek to regulate online poker much like the government regulates other forms of gaming, like lotteries.
* Prohibitions don’t work. Any legislation that tries to ban online poker will only drive those players underground.
* Again, I urge the Senator to oppose any attempts to prohibit me from playing the great American game of poker on the Internet.

The threat to poker is real. Please forward this information to everyone you know who cares about poker and an American’s freedom to use the Internet. We need everyone possible to make their voice heard on September 12th!

Michael Bolcerek
President, Poker Players Alliance

Quote of the year

Maria Sharapova, answering a question after winning her second major Sunday at the U.S. Open:

"I believe, at the end of the day, personally, my life is not about a banana."


I'm still in shock that for an early match, she decided to just wear the little black cocktail dress WHILE PLAYING THE MATCH.

This might be the only case I know of where one can go from playing in the game straight to the party without having to change clothes.

Cocktail dresses, loud grunting, and bananas. Women's tennis - catch the fever!

Don't wanna talk about it

I didn't want to do a post for any of the recent events - nuclear testing, Katrina anniversary, 9/11 anniversary, even the Crocodile Hunter.

I just don't want to think about it, or focus on it. I really don't. Frankly, with enough bad things happening in the current-day world, I don't want to remiss over anniversaries of things that were sad enough as they happened.

That's the extent of this post. Just wanted to say why I don't have a long reflection on today or haven't for other anniversaries. One, I've written enough about them already in other past posts. Two, I really don't want to wallow right now. Three, other folks do a much better job of putting into words how I feel on these events anyway, a far better job than I could do. I'm trying instead to be upbeat about the future, which is hard enough nowadays with the daily bad news from other parts of the world.

I'm just not in a reflective mood today, nor do I want to be. It's not to say I'm not sad about it, or not thinking about it, because I am.

I just don't want to write or talk about it. That's all.

Sunday, September 10, 2006

Week 1 Observations, Larry King style

Favorite play of the day: a touchdown pass to Jeremy Shockey, who ran over to some troops behind the end zone, gave them the ball, and hugged them. Classy move.

If Brett Favre knew in April what he knows now, he would have retired to be spared the humiliation of a home shutout.

The Jets won't lose 15 games, but they still suck.

Think the Texans could have used Reggie Bush and his 140 total yards today?

Think the Saints were happy to get Bush's yardage and not Mario Williams 3 tackles?

I thought being rid of Chris Berman at halftime of Sunday night games was a good thing - until I got treated to Bob Costas instead.

John Abraham may turn out to be the most important offseason acquisition after all.

If you have a Manning at QB, you're in good shape.

If you have a Manning at QB and get called for 10 stupid offensive dead-ball penalties, you need a new OC.

With a RB by committee and no WR's, it may be a long year in Foxboro. Staving off a team like Buffalo thanks to a late safety is not a good harbinger.

Kerry Collins has as much of a place in the NFL right now as Jeff George. Let Vince Young play and start the learning curve now.

Why can't all MNF games start at 7:00 like tomorrow night, or 8:00 like the preseason?

Two-year olds like Sunday NFL Countdown when they get crayons.

Garlique is great for high blood pressure and cardiovascular therapy. Get Garlique now!

Michael Vick puts together a good highlight reel, but actually completing more than a dozen passes one of these games would be nice.

Next year, San Francisco could make the playoffs, They have a good young team now, and if they get to 6 wins this season, they could take it up to a playoff level in 2007.

I think Jake Plummer lost his security blanket, if he is already thinking about Jay Cutler replacing him.

The best game of the week hasn't been played yet - it's the last game of the week, tomorrow night, between San Diego and Oakland. And I'll be asleep before it ends at 1:30 AM.

I've still got Week 7 as the week T.O. rips off Drew Bledsoe's head in a dark alley.

Chiefs get trounced today. Herman, you karma payback is just beginning. Have fun with Damon Huard.

One more thing - were there any baseball games today?

Saturday, September 09, 2006

Foot in mouth

OK, that sucked to watch.

Especially in the wake of earlier posts. At least I had the right number of OSU points.

The fumble on the 1-yard line was an absolute killer - it was a 14-point swing.

Not a happy night.


At least it's not a conference loss.

I guess Ohio State deserves to be #1 right now after all. A tip of the hat for a well-played game on their part.

And good luck being the hunted instead of the hunter.

Alex watched until halftime, and went to sleep, but he did say he would like to play football with Bevo.

Friday, September 08, 2006

Preparing for the weekend

In case I'm not able to post this weekend, this can stay up here for the weekend, just as proof that I have better taste than this site which posts Alabama pictures. Yuck.

A reminder of last year:

The Halliburton promo in the background is a nice touch.

As for this year - Texas will lose a game, but this won't be the one they lose. Unfortunately, the one they do lose will be Oct. 7 in Dallas at the State Fair.

Thankfully, that other team in red will lose a couple other games, so UT will win the Big 12 anyway, but it will make the season for that team in Norman.

Texas 34, Ohio State 24.

Behold, 2500!

Visitor #2500 arrived this morning, just a few minutes ago.

Just glad to hit and celebrate a round number, because I haven't done that before. Next time I go away, we'll have a first-time guest blogger if he's up for it.

Now back to your normal boring Friday.

More panda-related news

Despite the fact that the baby panda cub is only a few days old, Zoo Atlanta is debuting its baby panda-cam.

Click here to go to the panda-cam, but be warned - bandwidth for the zoo is in high demand because schmucks like me are linking to it.

It was begun today at 10 AM. Public viewing would probably not begin until around Christmas, so until then, this is the only way to see the giant baby panda cub.

Cancelled, thankfully

Well, as I wrote about earlier, there wre plans to fly into NYC on 9/11.

Thankfully, those plans have been cancelled. One, because of concern from both me AND my manager about flying on 9/11 into NY. Two, because our Sales team in Virginia didn't actually confirm the meeting with the client or with us, and we weren't going to pay top dollar for plane tickets.

So, maybe another time. On the bright side, I get to spend the weekend preparing for my mid-term on Wednesday, preparing papers for Thursday, working on the lawn, and watching about 18 hours of college and pro football. Between a few hours of holding books and writing/typing, pushing a lawn mower, and clicking a remote, I'll probably have carpal-tunnel by the end of the weekend.

But I get to spend it at home. Which is nice.

I might even get to blog some this weekend, since we're about to pass 2500 visitors to the site. Thanks for all the hits and repeat visits.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Hot panda lovin'

Baby giant panda born at Zoo Atlanta.

OK, well, it wasn't really hot lovin' - it was artificial insemination because pandas won't screw to save their own species.

And it's not really giant - it's a 4-ounce baby born to a 300-lb bear. Slightly different than human labor.

Click into the story for pictures, because the AJC sucks and won't let me save anything, even with the link and credit. Bastards.

Now if you'l excuse me, I have to go fight William Shatner.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Pick time!

But first, a quick note:

To: Bill Simmons
Re: 9/6/06 Column

Thanks for picking the Patriots to win it all. I needed the laugh.

His columns get funnier and funnier, and not in a good way.

OK, here goes:

NFC East: I'm not buying the Cowboys. T.O. will kill that team within five weeks - heck, it's already started. The Skins have Mark Brunell at QB. The Eagles think that a perenially underachieving WR will be the answer - No, no, and no. That leaves the GIANTS. For fantasy purposes, Eli had better throw for 3200 yards and have a 2:1 TD/INT ratio, at a minimum. Otherwise, I'm screwed.

NFC North: What an ugly division. The Bears have no offense, the Vikings have no love boat, the Packers are stuck with Brett Favre and the fork in his back, and the Lion are, well, the Lions. I'll pick the BEARS because they are actually really good on one sie of the ball, and that defense might be enough for a 10-win season.

NFC West: Seattle lost a lot this offseason. St. Louis has improved but still has Marc Bulger at QB. The 49ers have good young talent, and could surprise. We could see a 9-7 division winner, and with all the moves they made this offseason, I'm picking ARIZONA. Let's hope this pick is more accurate than in previous years.

NFC South: The best team in the conference resides here. CAROLINA will win the division in a rout.

NFC Wild Cards: One of these teams could be 8-8 - again. I'm inclined to pick Tampa Bay and St. Louis, with the Rams being that 8-8 team.

NFC Champ: Carolina. Too much talent, too many weapons on both sides of the ball, and the rest of the NFC is awful.

AFC East: As implied above, I give the Patriots no chance. Receivers are important. If they had settled their dispute with Branch amicably, then I could pick them. However, they've lost him and gotten nothing, nor have they replaced him. I'm inclined to go with MIAMI - they upgraded significantly at QB with Culpepper, despite his terrible 2005 it is a massive improvement. Ronnie Brown will be an every-down back and there's a strong defense still in place. Enough to win the division.

AFC South: Jacksonville doesn't have enough on defense to be as dominant a team as Indianapolis, and Leftwich keeps missing time. The Jags didn't improve their line so he could sit on the sideline for a few games again next to Fred Taylor's groin. COLTS win the division.

AFC West: Raiders? No, not with Aaron Brooks. Broncos? No - QB controversy waiting to happen. Chiefs? A karma nightmare waiting to happen after Edwards bailed on the Jets. The CHARGERS, after last year's weak finish, should rebound quite well thanks to a favorable schedule and the growth of Philip Rivers. He doesn't have to do a lot with Tomlinson at RB and Gates at TE, just manage the game until he's comfortable winging it. Look for a Big Ben type of season from him in his first season starting.

AFC North: This is probably the toughest of all the divisions. All four teams are legitimate playoff threats. While Carson Palmer seems to be recovering nicely (and making me regret not selecting him), off-field troubles could prevent this team from reaching 10 wins. Cleveland loaded up on defense, but still seems weak offensively. Pittsburgh will miss Big Ben for at least a week, and I don't think Parker is the answer at RB over a full season. As for Baltimore, the defense should be very strong again, with the addition of Ngata and returning to a 3-4 defense. Steve McNair is the best QB this franchise has had in Baltimore, and a full season of Jamal Lewis and Todd Heap should push them over the top. The RAVENS take the division.

AFC Wild Cards: Pittsburgh, Cincinnati. That's right, the Patriots miss the playoffs entirely.

AFC Champion: CHARGERS. The schedule-makers were kind to them and division opponents have too many problems, and they could be the #2 seed in the AFC, then advance to the Super Bowl when Indy chokes again.

Super Bowl XLI: San Diego 27, Carolina 16.

The eyes of Texas are upon you......

Ohio State v. Texas, in Austin, Saturday night.

Not to add any pressure, but this week's polls have Texas at #2, making this the first 1 v. 2 matchup in a decade.

We will be watching. Not sure if we will watch from home or with the Texas Exes at Jocks and Jills in Brookhaven, but we will definitely be watching. Alex will almost certainly bring his little Bevo with him while watching the game.

A win for either team will go a long way towards the BCS Championship, but I still don't think either team will survive the season unscathed. If one can survive their conference schedule after this win, then they have a good shot. It should be an exciting game, deserving of the hype between the top two teams.

But really, no pressure at all. Just a nice, easy night.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Up from the ground come a bubblin' crude

Black Gold. Texas Tea.

A LOT of friggin' oil.

50% increase in U. S. Reserves - 15 billion barrels.

So, can we go ahead and bomb Iran now that we found a crapload more oil?

I'm quite happy for Chevron, based in New Orleans. I'm quite happy for SE Louisiana, as this should translate into more revenue for the Gulf Coast region. They need a break.

And apparently shareholders are happy too, since the stock shot up 4% this morning.

The odds of gas being under $2 a gallon by November just got a lot better. If it keeps going down, perhaps we may not see as many incumbents being swept from office as we've thought. Gas prices are the easiest way for the average consumer (voter) to examine their pocketbook as well as shape their view of the economy as a whole.

Lower gas prices = happier consumer = not as angry with their representative = status quo.

Sunday, September 03, 2006

Church Oddities

Two odd things today in Mass that I did not think I would ever encounter:

1) Truthiness. Yes, that's right, a Stephen Colbert reference during a homily. At St. Joseph's, it was mentioned while discussing the Gospel reading.

2) Patriotic recessional hymns. I really don't know why this was the case, but the closing song at Mass was America the Beautiful. Now, it's a great song, and would probably be a better fit as our National Anthem, but at the end of Mass?

Just an odd, odd Mass. A couple of us in the pews looked at each other and remarked we hadn't ever seen anything like that.

Anyone else have a weird occurrence like this?

Friday, September 01, 2006

What a joke

In light of Iran's recent joke of a response to the UN regarding its nuclear testing, I'm in the mood for some seems appropriate since no one is buying that a peaceful accord is realistic.

What do you mean I don't believe in God?
Talk to him every day
What do you mean I don't support your system?
I go to court when I have to
What do you mean I can't get to work on time?
Got nothing better to do
What do you mean I don't pay my bills?
Why do you think I'm broke? Huh?

If there's a new way
I'll be the first in line
But, it better work this time

What do you mean I hurt your feelings?
I didn't know you had any feelings
What do you mean I ain't kind?
Just not your kind
What do you mean I couldn't be President
Of the United States of America?
Tell me something, it's still 'We the people', right?

If there's a new way
I'll be the first in line
But, it better work this time

Can you put a price on peace?
Peace, peace sells,
peace, peace sells
Peace sells, but who's buying?
Peace sells, but who's buying?
No, no, no, no, no!

Or perhaps this one suits your mood fit better a month ago:

Brother will kill brother
Spilling blood across the land
Killing for religion
Something I don't understand

Fools like me who cross the sea
And come to foreign lands
Ask the sheep for their beliefs
Do you kill on God's command?

A country that's divided
Surely will not stand
My past erased, no more disgrace
No foolish naive stand

The end is near, it's crystal clear
Part of the master plan
Don't look now to Israel
It might be your homelands

Holy wars.....