Sunday, December 16, 2007

At least someone gets it

This politically correct, heaven forbid we offend someone BS is beyond my understanding. I have yet to meet anyone who was offended by a Holiday Greeting such as Merry Christmas or Happy Hannukah no matter what religion they were.
And I found this most interesting. All the TV stations and most programs have their little "Holiday Wishes" promos. Each is the most non denominational, plain vanilla greeting ever. "Season's Greetings, Happy Holidays, Feliz Navidad, 'Tis the Season." WTH is up with these greetings?

Season's Greetings and 'Tis the Season? WTF!!! I want to wish you a happy winter? That is possibly the most idiotic greeting ever. Winter, Spring, Summer, and Fall--those are seasons. Christmas is no more a season that 4th of July or President's Day. Who would offer anyone a Happy Patriotic Season in July?

Happy Holidays falls right in with the generic and ubiquitous "Have a nice day." A pleasant enough greeting, but lacking in real commitment. It's better than "Merry Christmas if you celebrate it, " which I have heard. Oy vey!

And now, the prevalence of Feliz Navidad. So, apparently, if I were Spanish, I get an appropriate religious-based greeting. But for run of the mill Christians who speak English, no way, Jose.

Now, this is what I found most interesting in these greetings. They are on TV stations with predominantly Christian audiences. Overwhelmingly Christian would be a more accurate description. And here's the twist. I watch Asian-American TV on the weekends. I do love my Bollywood. : )
And on these channels, whose audience is, at best, only a tiny portion Christian, guess what their greeting was?

Merry Christmas.

A few weeks ago, they wished everyone a Happy Dawali, because that was what many (probably most) of the audience celebrates. They didn't qualify it or water it down so as to not offend Christians or Muslims, or whoever happens to watch their programming.
And this week, it was Merry Christmas. Because they realize anything else is just plain stupid. They didn't qualify it, they didn't dilute it, and they didn't mix in various other greetings.

We have a lot to learn from them about tolerance and acceptance. Inclusion and diversity does not mean suppression of what we love about our lives and heritage, but rather it is a way to celebrate alongside and revel in what each brings to our American tapestry.

Merry Christmas, Everyone.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Dear Santa Claus

It's been a while since I've written to you.

It's been a pretty f'd up year, so I figure you owe me big time. Normally, I ask about the wife and the elves, but this is all about me. I want stuff, and lots of it.
I want a race car set. Yeah, I know you got me one over 40 years ago. But that was given away many years ago. And I miss all the good times I had with it. There was something relaxing about sending the cars streaking around that circle. At that time, it seems hard to believe that an 8 year old needed to relax, but after a hard day of reading, writing, and all that crap, I had to get my mind off the pressures of school and watch the cars go around and around. I was pretty easy to entertain back then.

And you know what Big Guy? It hasn't changed much.

And if you could pack an electric football game in that bag, I'd be pretty happy. I know the guys never went where the should have, and I don't remember ever playing anything resembling the game of football because the thing was noisy and pretty much sucked. But I want one anyhow.

I used to like building model cars. For some reason, I always painted them baby blue with an overspray of gold. I'm sure they looked like crap, but to me they were beautiful. And I don't have any because me and Eddie from up the street used to blow them up in the field across the street. I promise not to blow them up. Besides, I don't know where Eddie lives any more.

I'd also like a couple model rockets. I used to have a fleet of them. I have no idea why, but I always painted them orange and black. I guess I thought that was a good combination. I'm not sure what color I'd paint them now. Maybe baby blue with gold overspray.

And I definately need soldiers. Don't try sticking me with those little stupid green army men, either. I want the 6" ones from Marx. And I want a few of each. Nothing sucked more than playing army and only having American soldiers and one German guy. And I'll need some Japanese soldiers, too. Make sure I get the guys throwing grenades. The Japanese one looked a little like Dice K and I want him to be the first to get shot by sniper fire when I play. I also would like some Roman soldiers. You can give the cowboys and Indians to some other guy seeking a second childhood.

This was usually the part of my letter where I asked you to bring me less presents because some poor kids needed them more. And I probably asked for peace.

Santa, we go way back. I don't really want to be greedy. Just get me the race car set. And have a nice Christmas.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

I have created a monster

When I first got together with the Crotchety Old Lady we shared many passions. Sadly, Yankees baseball was not one of them. But over the last 15 very happy years, she has gradually been converted to fandom. I always imagined growing older with the woman I love and the team I have been a fan of for more years than I care to count. Sitting on the couch while enjoying each other and the best in sports entertainment--what a way to spend my days.

Gradually, the Old Lady has evolved and become a more knowledgeable fan. Again, this could only be considered a good thing. She has a favorite player (Andy Pettitte) and has Yankees gear. I should be the happiest man on the planet.

But much like Dr. Frankenstein, my plan has gone awry. I have created a fan in the purest sense of the word. Fan, as everyone should know, is short for fanatic. And that would be the way to describe my lady.

When A-Rod filed for free agency, her first reaction was that he betrayed her and the team.

And now that he has announced that he wants to come back (crawling back is how she described it) she has become really angry. She wants to take my A-Rod Jersey and cut it up and use it for dustrags after she washes the floor with it. Even though he is perhaps the best player of the last 10 years, and one of the greatest ever, he is terrible, according to her. A total bum because he did so badly in the playoffs. And she has pointed out at least a half dozen times that the Yankees lost the playoffs, and never made it to the Series totally because of him.

The Yankees are looking to re-sign Mo. And again, she is angry that he had what could only be considered an average year by every standard. She expects perfection each and every time out. She is ready to dump the greatest reliever in history because he had an average year.

I have created a monster, and she has turned on me.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Rockies in 4!!!

The World Series starts tonight, and I would be so pleased to see the Rockies win in 4. My reasoning is quite different than one might expect. Of course, I'm a dyed in the wool Yankees fan, and any time the Sox lose, I'm a happy guy. And few things would cheer up a Yankees fan more than a sweep by the other team. Any other team.
This year is unusual. The Rockies are riding a 10 game winning steak, and a 21 out of 22 run that has moved them from a wild card contender right into the World Series. Early in September, they were 5 games out, and had almost no chance. They were 2 games out with 2 to go. Yet today, they are in the Series. No baseball team in history has ever had a run like this.

If the Rockies lose the Series, they had a good season. If they win the Series, they had a great season. But if they sweep the Series, it may go down as one of the greatest seasons ever. Other sports have had great teams that have had great seasons. The Dolphins perfect 17-0 season in 1973 immediately comes to mind. And while no team has ever duplicated a perfect season, I contend that 25 out of 26 (with the season on the line every day) would be a greater accomplishment. Football is a team sport. It is rare that one person can step up and make a big difference. A great run is preceded by a terrific block. A circus catch required a throw good enough to be on target enough to be reachable. Anyone remember seeing Ypremian's attempt at a pass in the Super Bowl? Even a great kick requires a front line that can protect the kicker long enough to get the ball through the uprights.

Baseball, on the other hand, is loaded with unlikely heroes. It is part of the fabric of the game.
The most famous may have been Don Larson, with a career winning record of under .500. However, in 1956, this 11 game winner pitched the only perfect game in World Series history. Or Bucky Dent, a light hitting SS (40 home runs in 12 seasons) belted one of the most famed blasts in Yankees history. Or even Brian Doyle (Who?) hitting .438 in the '78 Series. No other sport can boast such outstanding performances by such otherwise obscure players.
At any time, one player can turn around a game. A pitcher can be unhittable. In no team sport can one man have such an impact. So anytime in this run, just one player could have stopped it. Yet, no one did. The longer the streak continues, the more improbable it has become. Just as many have approached DiMaggio's mark of 56 straight games with a hit, no one has ever equaled it. If the Rockies manage, against all odds, to sweep the Sox it would surely go down as the greatest run in sports history. And I'd like that.

But I am sad to admit that if I had to put money on a team, it would be on the Sox. In 6.

But hope springs eternal. Go Rockies!!!

Monday, October 22, 2007

One Man's Quest

I am the ultimate creature of habit. I used to wear the same color shirt every day. I found one light blue one that I liked and bought all the store had. As they wore out, I replenished them with the same style and color. The wife did what she could to mix in some other color shirts, but I hated them, and did my best to thwart her attempts to mess with my style, lame as it was.

My lunches are the model of consistency. I usually eat the same thing every day. It may change month to month, but when I find something I like, I'll eat it for a few months or more. I once had peanut butter and jelly for about a year straight.

I eat the same thing for breakfast Monday through Friday. I have a Stony Brook Farms yogurt. Usually I have Vanilla Truffle, but sometimes the store doesn't stock enough, so I have to eat a Chocolate Underground instead followed by cereal with vanilla soymilk. Sunday is Bob's Red Mill Whole Grain Pancakes, with pure maple syrup. Saturday is an omelet, usually with goat cheese and onion, with 2 slices of whole grain toast. All was going well until this Saturday. My toaster broke!!!!

I then spent the rest of the weekend studying toaster sites. I have gone through about a half dozen toasters in the last 15 years, and I was determined not to buy another junk toaster. I was prepared to make an environmentally sound decision, I wanted to buy a toaster that would last me, if not for the rest of my life, at least long enough that I wouldn't feel like my amortized cost for toast was nearly 45 cents each slice. I also decided that I wanted to buy an American made toaster, cost be damned. It was my little effort to support my countrymen, while helping to protect the balance of trade and keep the dollar strong.

But it was not to be. No toasters are made in America. After exhaustive research, it appears only one country, besides China, makes toasters. England is the only other country that I could find that produces toasters. The Dualit line is a hand made toaster made in Crawley, UK. This town in the south of England is the manfacturer of the finest hand-made toasters in the world. Unfortunately, they cost between $280 and $350 each. When making such an investment, I needed to do more research to decide which was the toaster for me. The toaster of my dreams, so to speak. I must have a hand made in Crawley, England Dualit toaster. But then all the important decisions had to be made. I needed to decide on a model. While most ordinary toasters simply come in 2 and 4 slice models, and are usually stainless steel in color. But not Dualit. They offer a 3 slice model, and a variety of colors.

My first decision, of course was the number of slices. 3 would be ideal, since between the wife and I, we eat exactly 3 slices of toast at a time. Perfection. Life would now be in absolute balance.

But I had a new concern. Would a 3 slice toaster affect the feng shui of my kitchen? Everything else is in perfect harmony. Two sinks, four stove burners, two kitchen chairs. Balance. I just couldn't wrap my mind around the concept of a 3 slice toaster. So I shopped at ebay for a 2 slice model. I spent the entire day, hunting for the toaster. I battled for a few, but got sniped on a sweet red 3 slicer. I was willing to live dangerously for a good price. But it was not to be. I got sniped with seconds to go. I then focused my energies on a nice, lightly used, chrome and charcoal model. Again, it was not to be as I gave up at $79.00 for a used toaster.

I pressed onward. I was totally locked in on a nice used, but in like-new condition blue 2 slicer. I even began to call it my new toaster. I put in a solid bid, and then watched in horror as some clown kept nibbling away, driving up the price 3 bucks at a time. 14 nibbling bids later, they appeared to give up. But I worried, so I sat and watched the end of the auction. I kept a window open with a higher bid, just in case, and refreshed the pages every few seconds. Finally, I had shopped victoriously.

I won a manly toaster. Big and brawny. A beast among toasters. According to the website, I can now make 78 slices of toast per hour. I may have to make all the toast in the house from now on. I don't know if the wife can handle that much machine.

Here it is, the Toaster of My Dreams:

Friday, October 19, 2007

What a stupid move by the Yankees!

They let Joe Torre go. The guy has made the playoffs 12 straight years. This year, the Yankees lost in the playoffs. Was it mismanagement? Was Joe at fault for the Yankees failure to hit in the playoffs? Of course not. Could Torre have exected mayflies in October? And why was he not prepared for them? Oy vey! The kid, Joba Chamberlain had thrown one wild pitch all season. He threw 2 in an inning. Maybe Torre shouldn't have put a rookie in that situation, but who else should he have used? Farnsworth? You never know with him. He could be dominant, or he could be like a batting tee. It was too early for Mo. Torre made the right choices, and got the wrong results.
It reminds me of when Zimmer was manager of the Cubs a few years back. He managed contrarily to recognized strategies. It worked, and he made it to the playoffs--what a genius! The next year, it didn't, and he got fired.
Hall of Fame Manager Earl Weaver was asked how many games a good manager could win for a team. His response? ""Zero." A bad manager may lose a game or two a year, but the best managers win none.
Baseball strategy is limited at best. Certainly, every manager has percentages and "books" available at all times. But belt high fastballs get missed, and "perfect" sliders on the outside of the plate get hit into the upper deck every day.
What does it all mean? Just that if a manager "has the horses" he will lead his team to victory. But saddle him with some broken down 46 year old savior coupled with a bunch of rookies, and throw in some injuries and John McGraw, Miller Huggins and Tommy LaSorda combined can't guarantee a win, let alone a World Series title.
Bottom line:
The Yankees, who have made their share of mistakes during the Steinbrenner years, just made one of their biggest. They allowed a loyal member of the Yankees family to walk. Torre is a gentleman, a baseball man, and most of all, a winner.

Monday, October 01, 2007

The season continues

The Padres and the Rockies are in a one game playoff to deteremine the NL wild card playoff team tonight.
The Rockies got in by winning 13 of their last 14 games. What a great finish!!!

I predict this red hot team will win today, but will lose the first game of the playoffs against the Phils.

It may be tough for any team to beat the Phils in the playoffs.

So, look for the Yankees and Phils to meet in the World Series, and, of course, championship 27 will go to the team from the Bronx.

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Who is in the Playoffs?

This has been one of the greatest seasons ever. Here it is, with one game to go, and the NL still hasn't determined which teams are in the playoffs. Only one division is decided (the Central--go Cubbies!) while the East is a flat-footed tie between the Phillies and Mets. I think everybody is still alive in the West. That was a slight exaggeration. The D-Backs are in, but it may be as division winner or wild card. The wild card has not been determined, because the Mets, Phils and Padres may all wind up with the same record.

The most amazing part of this year is that the Yankees were written off a few months ago, as were the Phillies. Baseball is a long season. And I can't remember any season when the words of Yogi Berra were ever more appropriate, "It ain't over, til it's over."

A-Rod has all but won the MVP award, and that brings up an interesting question. How can a guy sign a 10 year deal with the option to walk at 7? Which genius executive signed off on that? And it makes one wonder just how high is up? A-Rod is getting 25 mil per year, and he is seeking a raise? WTH!!! I realize he is probably the best player in the game today, but more than 25 mil per? Didn't he catch enough crap when he signed last time? And, yes, I completely understand that baseball contracts are not about the money per year, but the total dollars. And A-Rod is at the age where this may be his last shot at another mega contract. What would have been wrong with another 7 years at 25 mil per? That would make his total for the last 2 contracts for 14 years at 25 mil per year. Total contract 350 mil. That should make for a fairly comfortable retirement.

I was watching the Phillies game today, and saw something so stupid. Sitting in the stands, at a Philadelphia Stadium, watching a game against the Washington franchise, was some moron in a Mets cap. Maybe I'm a traditionalist, but this is just wrong. It's great to support one's team, and if the Mets were within 50 miles of the Stadium I could understand it. But when you wear shirt, caps, etc. representing a team that is no where in sight, that is just plain rude and ignorant. The only exception to this would be if one had a classic bit of memorabilia, like a Negro League cap or a Carl Hubbel jersey. Otherwise, just wear a cap saying, "Booger Eating Moron."

Playoffs begin Tuesday with the Yankees against the Indians.

GO YANKEES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Monday, September 10, 2007

September 11th, 2001

September, 11, 2001 changed America forever. It affected thousands of lives in ways many of us didn‘t initially anticipate. Allow me to explain. I had two students who lost their Dad in the Twin Towers that fateful day. I never met the man, but met his children about four months after the loss of their father. More than five years later I still can’t get the image out of my mind of my two students. Here’s a little bit of the background story: dad went to work nice and early that Tuesday morning, got on the train in Central New Jersey, and headed to the World Trade Center for a special early morning business event.
I like to think he kissed his wife and kids goodbye, picked up his valise, and headed out the door. Maybe he asked her to make something special for dinner, or he may have told her he would try to get home early that night. I’m sure he left with hope and a little bounce in his step on that bright Tuesday morning.
He was headed to a business card exchange at Windows on the World. This was one of the premiere restaurants in NYC, and the place where men and women networked to try to help themselves by helping each other. They weren’t captains of industry, but instead were the “regular guys.” They were men and women working hard to provide food and shelter for their families. I’m sure some were highly paid, among the best and brightest in their field, but most were average Joes. Folks who got on the train in suburbia, and headed into “The City” to earn their daily bread.
Everyone knows what happened next. The planes hit the Tower at 9:11 a.m. and tens of thousands of lives changed forever in that instant.
America itself changed drastically that day. No longer did we feel safe from attack. Everyone should have known that we were vulnerable. Bombs had been set off around the world for years. In 1993, the Trade Center had been attacked, and survived. My friend Jim, a Transit cop who died on 9-11, had been honored previously for his actions back then. The Tower was considered indestructible. America was tough, strong, and safe. 9-11, however, showed that we were indeed vulnerable. Our innocence was lost.
In January 2002 I worked tutoring children. As stated previously, two of my students were children of one of the many victims. The more time I spent with them, the more I realized that they were also the victims, in addition to their dad. The boy was in 8th grade, while his sister was in 5th. But they didn’t look like typical middle school age kids. It was something about their eyes. Their brown eyes looked perpetually sad. I never recall seeing the normal joy and playfulness in the demeanor of the boy. This young man was the most morose teenager I ever met. In my over 5 years of tutoring, he was the only child I never could make laugh. He had the eyes of an old man. And, unfortunately, the soul of a beaten down old man.
His sister had the same sad eyes. But after a while, she changed around me. She started to smile more, and even laughed at my incredibly witty jokes. They were witty to a 5th grader, anyway. By the time my birthday came around, she gave me a very beautiful hand made card. It took everything I had not to cry when she gave it to me. The best part is she made the card a funny one. Was my sense of humor helping her a little bit to heal? I’ll never know, but I certainly hope it did.
I think about my two special students often. The memories of September 11th surround us here in the NY metro area. We have monuments everywhere-- at train stations, parks, and shopping centers. I wonder if they are able to look past these various memorials as so many of us do, or if they serve as reminders to them on a daily basis of the worst day of their lives.
Time heals all wounds, even those that have cut so deeply.


Sunday, September 02, 2007


The Yankees have taken over the wild card, and don't look like they are going to relinquish the lead any time soon. The pitching is coming around at last. Other than Mussina, they have a credible starting staff, especially in a short series. A few years ago the Diamondbacks showed that with just 2 strong starters the World Series can be won. Wang, Pettitte and Clemens should be able to do the job. And the bullpen is balanced with Joba (my new favorite player, and the one voted "Best Son-in-Law Candidate Among New York Sports Stars, So How Do I Introduce Him To My Daughter") Chamberlain along with Mo who seems to be hitting postseason stride. Vizcaino is doing well, and Ramirez seems to be getting better with every game. I'm not worried about the pitching for the first time in many years. Considering how young many of the pitchers are, they should be dominant in the near future, also.

The offense is not quite as productive as expected, but some of the guys who were struggling early have picked up the pace. Abreu and Matsui have come back from slow starts and are both well on the way to 100 RBI years again. A-Rod is having an MVP year, while Jorge is having one of his best years at bat and in the field. I thought catchers slowed down at his age? Couldn't happen to a better guy.

Damon is starting to hit a little, and he has decided to shut up. Both of these are good moves on his part, and good for the team. And, against all odds, Jason Giambi is back, and has been playing first like a Gold Glover. Yeah, Giambi has been making good plays around the bag. He even made a couple run saving plays. I'm a huge fan of the G man, but never thought he would ever remind me of Mattingly at first.

I remember an announcer a few years ago remarked that bad teams seem to play well early before they realize how bad they are. Seemed silly at the time, but it sure does seem to follow throughout the years. It almost is as if the Yankees suddenly realized how good they were, and have been playing great since the All-Star break. Since the break, thay have been playing at a blistering .667 pace. If they had done this from April, they would have 90 wins already, and the howling in Beantown about the payroll would have been so long and loud. I'm glad it happened this way. I haven't been subjected to the usual mid-season whining from all the teams with ownership that doesn't care about their teams enough to try to give them what they need to put a winning squad on the field.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Yankees Updates

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As of this minute, the Bombers are tied for the wild card, and stand just 4.5 games behind the Sox, who are currently on the losing end of a battle with the Angels. By the end of today, with a little luck, my team could be 4 games out of the division lead, and in front of the pack in the wild card race. A fan had a sign today, with a picture of a car’s side mirror that said, “Red Sox, objects in mirror may be closer than they appear.”
The team brought up Joba Chamberlain, and he is becoming a fan favorite. What’s not to like? He has a fastball in the 100 MPH range, a slider that is almost unhittable, and can throw a curve that falls off the table. Top it off with near pinpoint control, and they have one of the best, if not the best, young pitcher on the game. And, while talking about the best young pitchers in the game, how can Phil Hughes be left out of the discussion? He was the pride of the minor league system. Maybe he is the best young pitcher in the majors today. What a choice! They have the potential to be the best one -two punch in history. One day, they may rank up at the top of the list with Koufax and Drysdale, Carlton and Gibson, Seaver and Koosman. The “old” staff of the Yankees has gotten younger in a hurry. Wang, who is only 27 years old, gives the Yankees a big three that will dominate the AL East for years. And, more may be on the way.
Things are looking great in Yankeeland. The team seems to be running on all cylinders, as their explosive power can quickly turn a close 4-3 game into a 9-3 rout in almost no time.
About the only bump in the road was Johnny Damon’s whining a few weeks ago.
He complained that he wasn’t getting much playing time. Hey, Johnny, how about getting the old average above .250 before you start crying like a Little Leaguer? Not for nothing, but Melky is hitting 40 points higher, and can catch the ball, and then throw it. I ain’t saying we don’t love you, but how about sucking it up and getting healthy enough to earn those mega-bucks you are getting paid to WIN the World Series? Not for nothing, but, it’s not like the team is keeping you out of the HOF by benching you, nor are they keeping you from getting that next big payday.
GO YANKEES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Worst Vacation Ever

Last Wednesday, I set out for the wilds of Connecticut for a vacation. You may be thinking, Connecticut? But why would anyone ever go there? Ok, it was for a convention. I'm a model train geek, and I was willing to travel 3 hours for this once a year event.
Wednesday night, I was feeling kind of tired, but since I didn't sleep the night before (I was too excited--remember the part about being a geek?) I thought it was ok. Had trouble sleeping, but again, thought all was well.
Thursday seemed a little better. I slept sitting on a chair, but at least I got some rest. I went to one event, and felt pretty good.
Friday was laid back, and I really thought it was going to be fine.
Then about 7 at night, all hell broke loose. I couldn't breathe. My chest hurt. I was sweating like at a police checkpoint with a dead hooker in the trunk of my car.
Emergency services showed up, meanwhile the hotel manager was busy chasing me and the old Lady with some sort of waiver protecting the hotel from damages. If room 131 was going to henceforth be known as "The Death Room," at least Sam the night manager would have his paperwork in order.
The staff at the hospital was great. Nurse Heather, who could have been a model, teamed up with Dr. Cutie Rodriguez, to help me breathe, and bring down the blood pressure.
Without boring anyone with details, it turns out that my previous doctors had not only given me the wrong meds, but had forgotten one key element. A diuretic. I spent the next 4 days peeing. 4 liters a day!!!! I lost 36 lbs as I peed at a Guiness record setting rate. Richard Simmons, kiss my butt.
I was released after 5 days, and feel better than I have in years.
It looks like this vacation, while a disaster, did have some good come out of it. I'll be writing boring blog posts for a while yet. In the words of Mark Twain: "The report of my death was an exaggeration."

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Alex is stuck at 499

Tonight the Yankees blasted 8 homers, and A-Rod was shut out. Interesting. I wonder how much the hundreds of flashbulbs going off affect him. They sure bug me.
I guess the biggest reason they bug me is because the flash works in a range of maybe 10 feet or so. Yet the schmuck in the upper deck snaps away as if he is getting a shot that will make the front page of the Daily News.
The Yankees still have a great shot not only for the wild card (3 games back) but I think they are going to catch the Sox. It didn't become any easier today when the Sox added to their bullpen by getting Gagne, but I still think we have enough to take them. Hughes will be back, and Giambi has been banging the ball on his rehab assignment. Once Igawa gets straightened out (again) they are going to have a bullpen that is good enough.
Mo has not been so dominant this year, but I wonder if that is a function of the team rather than his age. He has pitched at least a few times in non-save situations because Joe wanted to get the win. And, the Yankees have had streaks where they absolutely smashed teams, and Mo didn't pitch for a week. That is not how a closer stays sharp. His ERA is a respectable 3.05, but it's not the lights out numbers he usually puts up. He did have a few bad days in April, and for a guy who pitches so few innings, it is not easy to lower his ERA. All in all, I'm not worried, though.
One concern I do have is the hitting. When they are hitting, they score like no team I've ever seen. But then, they will get shut out the next two days. Frustrating as hell. I don't get it. And, for some reason, with Clemens or Pettitte on the hill, they don't seem to score at all.
But they will get catch the Sox. It may be in the last week of the season, and I won't even be surprised if it is a 1 game playoff.
Wang vs Beckett for it all.
You read it here first.
And Melky Cabrera will play the role of Bucky F'ing Dent.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Making the move

Finally, the Yankees are running on all cylinders. Sure, they are currently feasting on the soft underbelly of the junior circuit, but that is what they should do. They need to keep the relatively weak hitting teams in check, while they smash the pitching of the sub .500 teams. They have been successfully getting out the starters early, and then really abusing the long/middle relief.
That was the formula in the great 96-00 run, and along with decent pitching should get it done again.
As my Yankee friend has said since spring training: 27 in 2007.
That would look great on a t-shirt.

At this point, Yankees are 6 behind the Sox and only 4 out of the wild card. Isn't it funny how quickly things change. Just a few short weeks ago, nearly everyone was ready to write off the Bombers. Now today, it seems like they are jumping on the NYY bandwagon. I don't mind the sportswriters/talking heads. Their job is to be controversial and also to try not to show any favoritism. I'm a huge fan of Mike and Mike in the morning, and had no problem with Golic picking the Yanks to finish out of the playoffs. First, he's a TV personality. He's a former football player, so what does he know? His job is to fill the air with 4 hours (or more) of talk per day. The show would be boring if he just agreed with Greenie (Yankees fan and long time pro sports guy.)
But these aren't the guys I have trouble with.

Yankees fans. Guys who profess to be dyed in the wool fans, gave up in May, fergawdsake.


Guys who claimed to bleed Yankees blue (or pinstripes?) gave up with over 100 games to go. Before they hit the half way point, they conceded the pennant, and all but gave up on the wild card.

What a bunch of second rate fans.

I just want all of us regular fans, the ones who wouldn't give up the ship until the first pitch of the playoffs, not to allow those who jumped to get back on. Sure, I always make room during the playoffs for fans of other teams and allow them a chance to become a Yankees fan. Sort of like amnesty for those who were so misguided and misinformed. But I have no patience for those who gave up. You guys can go root for the Cubs.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Moral Orel

TV Sherpa checking in. I've been busy watching a lot of bad TV lately.

Does anyone care what the hell ever happened to Chachi or the 2 Coreys? I know I don't. I'm sure I'll eventually get around to review all these shows, but heaven knows I'm holding off as long as possible.

Unfortunately, the executives consider to produce crap on the major networks, and our only hope is cable's endless choices. Sadly, though, the crap level on cable has been increasing as they fill the void left by the big boys.

Not so with today's show I'm reviewing. Moral Orel, found on the Cartoon Network at 12:15 a.m. on Sunday night (ok, not exactly a prime time slot.)

This show is 15 minutes of quality viewing. The look of the program is very Davey and Goliath. Orel even closely resembles the aforementioned Davey. The surrounding cast, while also looking like Davey's friends and family, well, that's where the similarity ends.

Dad is an abusive scotch drinking kind of guy. Mom also appears to enjoy the occasional drink. An occasion could be Tuesday. Various religious people are in the show, and while they do wear the vestments, most do not share characteristics normally associated with the clergy.

Episodes from this year have included Orel being in a "Praying Bee" against his school's rivals, The Praying Mantises. In another his dad got in an argument with neighbors about the wording of the "Our Father."

The show has been described by others as Davey and Goliath meets South Park.

Maybe that would be an ok description. But I'm not 100% with that. South Park is much funnier, and much more topical, along with satire that is a bit more biting.
That said, I like Moral Orel. .

It's a pretty decent show with a lousy time slot.
I rate it a very solid 8. I wish it were longer and at a better time slot, although that would not affect my rating.

It's been a while, so here's a quick review of my ratings system:
10--a prime show. The Sopranos or 24 would rate a 10.
9-- definately worth watching. Think South Park or Seinfeld re-runs. Not as funny as the first time, but still great TV fare.
8-- Pretty darn good stuff. If you can't be home, you'd consider setting up the VCR. Some solid 8's would be Earl, or Everybody Hates Chris.
7-- Not quite good enough to tape. But you can look forward to watching. The Office is the first show that comes to mind as a 7.
6--Now we get into the shows that are ok, but only a first choice if other shows are re-runs.You won't mind watching a 6 at a different time. Britcoms are 6's.5-- Think of a movie you liked, but have seen a dozen times or more.You'd choose the movie over the program, then the program is a
5. Mash and almost everything on TVLAND has become a 5.
4--Crappy show, but with some redeeming quality, like it features hot chicks. Any show with Pam Anderson would be a 4.
3--Only worth watching if the only alternative is infommercials. Fishing shows are 3.
2-- About the same as a good infommercial. QVC is a 2.
1-- Infommercials, unless they are The Knife Collector Show. They sell swords!

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Talking Heads, Bobbleheads and Knuckleheads

When I was growing up, sports coverage was fairly limited. The Yankees were on Channel 11 (with about half the games broadcast,) the Mets were on Channel 9, and the game of the week was on Channel 7 on Saturday afternoons. The TV news usually featured a short nightly sports report. So, what has changed?
Sports now has a bunch of TV channels just devoted to it. MSG, FSN, ESPN, ESPN 2, ESPN Classic (just in case I really need to watch a 30 year-old bowling tournament) and a few others. The Yankees have their own channel and every single game is broadcast. The Mets and Sox have their own channels/networks also.
On the surface, this would appear to be great. Baseball fanatics can now satisfy their thirst for every single statistic as the networks have hours and hours to fill. But, I disagree. I believe we are in statistical overload.
It was just announced that Joe Maurer hit a walk off game winning single for the first time in his career last night. If I were a big Joe Maurer fan, that would mean something to me. I'm not, so it doesn't. However, because I believe that my brain can only contain and maintain so much information, I have now lost some bit of important info I may need at a later date. Did I lose the ability to figure out square roots?
Probably not because I couldn't do them before. So I worry about what I did lose.
And since sports networks have so much time to fill, we have to endure so many programs that should not be produced. Yes Network is busy touting a Tino Martinez Yankeeography. Ok, I like Tino as much as the next guy, but he sure doesn't warrant an hour special. If the network didn't have to fill 18 hours of daily programming, Tino would just be a part of the late 90's Yankees teams. So now, we get hours of dumb programming, hosted by even dumber ex-jocks as they interview players nobody cares much about.
Important update: Phillies are facing their 10,000th defeat as a franchise. Good thing Joe Morgan just pointed out that the Phillies can avoid this devastating defeat by outscoring their opponents. Even the most ardent fan couldn't possibly care about this alleged "milestone."
Is anyone thinking if only the 1972 team had just won a few more games? Just another meaningless statistic to fill the airwaves and my mind with senseless clutter.
How I miss the Scooter with his birthday announcements and his cannoli pandering.

Saturday, July 14, 2007


Your TV Sherpa weighing in today. Psych is one of the many shows on USA network. New shows come on Friday evenings, but they are repeated constantly. In fact, last night's show has been on maybe 4 or 5 times today already.
The basic premise for the show is simple: The star pretends to solve crimes using psychic ability. In actuality, he is just a really great detective. He is very detail oriented, and catches many of these relatively insignificant clues missed by the regular police. He does a good job of faking psychic powers, so he is called on often for the really tough cases. With his partner, they have a detective agency, and enjoy a modicum of success.
The show is ripe with interplay between his dad, a retired detective, and his partner who knows the real deal, and the regular police who have some doubts, but recognize that he has some gift. The show is loaded with laughs, so much so that it is hard to decide if the show is a comedy or a detective show.
It doesn't matter, it is what it is, and I really like it.

I'm rating it a very enjoyable 8.6.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

The second half begins

I've been in the hospital for part of the last month, and busy trying not to barf the rest of the time. But now I'm back. Starting to feel almost human again, so I need to get back to what I do best: Support the Yankees and watch TV.

Start with the Yankees. We enter the second half of the season 10 games out of the AL East pennant race, and 8 1/2 out of the wild card. These are desperate times indeed.

But I'm not ready to throw in the towel. Not even close. I can not find another starting 8 that I would swap even up for the Bronx Bombers. They are led by not 1, not even 2, but 3 legitimate MVP candidates. A-Rod, Jeter, and Posada. Each would be considered THE man on any other team, but on the Yanks they are just a part of the best lineup in baseball.

The starting staff is coming around, and as long as Pettitte is not injured (why has he gotten blown out in his last 2 starts?) Wang, Pettite, Mussina, and Clemens are enough to get us into the playoffs. And once there, easily enough to take on all comers, even the Tigers or Sox.

I'm looking for a huge second half surge by our pinstriped representatives of NY. A friend and fellow fan says 27 in 2007, and I see no reason to jump ship.

We still have a lot of baseball left this season.

As the great Lawrence Peter Berra once said, "It ain't over til it's over."

Monday, June 11, 2007

A Mixed Bag

Without going all Larry King on you (how in hell does he turn a bunch of non-sequiters into a paid gig?) I'm going to just put some odds and ends into one mega post.

Ok, a mini mega post. I don't have all that much energy.

One commercial I have been watching pretty closely is Gary Coleman for Cashcall. First, he almost acts as if he is high during the commercial. He laughs like, I don't know, a kid who is one toke over the line. Those song lyrics never made sense to me, but then Gary Coleman's commercials don't make a hell of a lot of sense either. I did got to the website, and they have Mafia-like lending rates. They range from around 60% APR up to 99.25%. And they charge a fee for the loan itself. Tony Soprano would be proud of the Bank of Delaware dba Cashcall.

I saw a TV show last night that was brought back from last year. It is so bad, that I won't even waste time to review it. It sucked last year, and after its hiatus, it didn't get any better. It was a double episode last night, and I couldn't sit through either one. The Loop is awful, and has the potential to be one of the worst shows ever made. It is available on DVD, but I can't imagine why anyone would want to buy and then watch it, unless of course, one wanted to use it to torture Gitmo prisoners and hope to interrogate them more effectively.

My Yankees are on a roll. Some lesser fans have already jumped off the Yankees bandwagon, and I can only wonder why they would give up so soon? They have 2 guaranteed first ballot Hall of Famers in Jeter and A-Rod, and Posada as a possible member. They have a pitching staff with 2 more guaranteed first ballot guys (Clemens and Rivera) along with two guys who may make it also (Pettitte and Mussina.) Add to this All-Stars like Cano and Matsui, and this is one hell of a team. And some fans had given up before Memorial Day? Front runners, turn in your Yankees Fan Club memberships immediately. And, don't be trying to hop back on the bandwagon when we catch the Sox. I know who you are.

What is up with all these commercials with the effeminate portrayals in them? The berries and cream Starburst commercial is one that comes to mind first, followed by one with some guy licking his friggin phone. Is this supposed to be showing gay men in a good light? Is it supposed to be funny? Are these supposed to be straight guys acting effeminate? I have no idea, but it sure makes me wonder what the hell these advertisers were thinking.

I just got a new DVD last night, so I'll probably watch it tonight. Johnny Dangerously used to be one of my all-time favorite movies, so I look forward to seeing New Jersey's own Joe Piscopo in one of his greatest roles. So, it didn't exactly get him an Oscar, but the movie was pretty funny.

Lastly, why do we pronounce bologna and baloney the same?

Friday, June 08, 2007


I rarely watch movies, as I miss big blocks of them. I watched one of the Pirates of the Caribbean movies last week (whatever one was part 2 shown on Starz) and I fell asleep in the middle of it. So, it is obvious that I have trouble watching movies when I miss huge blocks of them during my "naps." That said, I do find a certain type of movie that I like, and am able to stay awake during the entire film. I am not sophisticated enough to describe them using the word genre. I'm not even sure what genre means, but I've heard my friend Kevin use it, and he knows a lot about movies, so it must be pretty important and I hope it makes me sound smarter. I really enjoy "quirky" movies. Is that a genre? I'm not sure. But I know what I like. And it seems they are almost always on IFC (Independent Film Channel.)
I recently saw a few movies I really liked. The Station Agent pretty much had everything a quirky movie needed. It starred an angry dwarf, a tortured artist, and a wacky Puerto Rican guy. It was a perfect setting for quirkiness, and lived up to, no, it exceeded the TV Sherpa standard. Another one I saw was Danny Deckchair. It was sort of a chick flick, but quirky enough that I was able to watch it with my better half.
IFC also is the venue for 1970's karate movies. The 70's were the absolute "Golden Age" for karate movies, and these classics never seem to show up anywhere else. Various documentaries like "the F word," are not going to show up on "normal" channels. IFC movies and specials seem to have limited appeal, but this is what cable TV is supposed to be. A cable station should provide real choice, not the same re-hashed, repackaged crap found on other channels.
Showtime, HBO, Starz, and whatever movie channels are out there are all pretty much the same. They might have a different mix of movies at any one time, but they are all basically the same. Regular theater releases, only about 6 months to a year after anyone cared about them.
It's hard to rate an entire channel, but if I could, it is a perfect movie channel. It is the only movie channel consistently worth having.

Saturday, May 26, 2007

Theme Songs

By now, everyone knows how important opening theme music is to a show. The Sherpa gives extra points if a show has a good theme. I was just thinking about some of my all-time favorites.

A good theme is just so linked to a show that when one hears it, it immediately reminds one of the show itself. And for a great theme, the show reminds one of the theme, also.

First, what makes a good theme? Usually, it has catchy lyrics. I prefer those that tell a little story that can bring a new viewer up to speed. Think Gilligan's Island (A tale of a fateful trip) or The Jeffersons (Movin' on Up.) That's not to say that a musical opening isn't any good either (Sandford and Son.) Through the years, some opening themes have actually crossed over and made it to the radio airwaves. Welcome Back Kotter's theme, or at least a version of it, was the only real hit of John Sebastian's solo career. And, of course the theme from Cheers got loads of airplay. Another huge hit on top ten radio was the theme from Hawaii 5-0. Book 'em Danno.
Today's shows seem to be a little lacking in theme music. Sure, The Unit has that awesome cadence thing, and Two and a Half Men has a nice opening, but beyond that, is the King of Queens opening really any good? And the Simpsons? Sure it is identifiable, but rather blah.
I thought I'd make a top ten of my all-time favorites, but I have so many I like, I'll have plenty of "Honorable Mentions."
I'll do it David Letterman countdown style.
10. Speed Racer--It just sets the tone for a fast action cartoon.
9. Theme from the Sopranos--Woke up this morning, got yourself a gun. How could you not like a song that starts with gunplay? Song got a lot of airplay, too.
8. King of Cars--I just like it. They dooz it large.
7. Cheers--Decent showing on top ten radio.
6. Beverly Hillbillies-- Tells a story, and has some classic banjo music
5. Sandford and Son--Jazzy and distinctive instrumentals.
4. Addams Family --What Boomer doesn't know at least one alternate verse of this ditty? Also, first time we ever were exposed to sarcasm. Lurch --petite?
3. Spongebob Squarepants-- Unites the generations. Boomers know it because their grandkids are addicted, Gen Xer's because their kids either watch it now or grew up on it. Also, tells a little story. Who lives in a pineapple under the sea?
2. Hawaii 5-0. --Great music. Just feels like an island theme.
1. Gilligan's Island --It has it all. Catchy lyrics. Backstory in a minute or less. And has legs. Ask any boomer to sing it, and he or she will know it better than their SS#.
In no particular order, the following receive "Honorable Mention."
Lone Ranger--Too easily confused with the William Tell Overture
Love Boat--Too sweet for diabetics
Hill Street Blues--I couldn't remember how it went well enough.
A-Team--I pity the fool who left this off the list.
Andy Griffith--It was called either the Fishin' hole or the Ol' Fishin' Hole. I don't like themes that use ' in them.
My Three Sons--Little too blah
All in the family--Too annoying
Lucy--I just don't love Lucy.
Good Times--Too ghetto-ey
Cookin' in Brooklyn--Too unknown
So, that's the list. The ten best and another 10 that didn't quite make the list.
Who said I have too much free time?

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Moral Court

Most TV courtroom shows are pretty much the same. They have become very formulaic as one case involves an underage pregnancy. and the next will be something about room mates, followed by a case of property ownership.
Of course, a few of the dramas have judges with great personality, while one, The People's Court features Judge Marilyn Milian. She is hot. I have no idea how she is as a judge, but she would make a great Hooter's waitress, if the judge thing doesn't work out.
Lately, I have been watching an older court show on Ion. Ion is a station that features such quality programming as Alice, Amen, and about 18 hours of infommercials. To their credit, one of the infommercials is the 5 hour long Knife Collectors Show.
Back to Moral Court. It was a short lived show from around 2001. It is hosted/judged by Larry Elder.
These are not cases that you'd find on other TV court shows. Generally, they are cases with no legal precedent, and are based solely upon the morals of Mr. Elder. His decisions are: if he finds one party to be wrong, he'll award $500. If he finds it to be a more serious moral problem, he terms it offensive, and awards $1,000. If he finds it to be outrageous he awards the shows' maximum, $2,000. The accuser or the accused are paid by the show.
Mr Elder often will offer advice, but, since it isn't really court, it is non-binding. But the advice is still pretty good. It reminds me of the advice a good aunt or uncle would give a favorite niece or nephew.
One of my favorite parts of the show is when the studio audience is polled and they give advice ala Jerry Springer's audience to the accused or accuser. Or, they may ask questions pertaining to the "case." The audience is very well behaved, unlike on Springer. And I have yet to see anyone lose control, or physically attack another. This reminds me of a gentlemanly Springer Show, if such an animal could exist. I'm sad that this show only lasted for a short while. Enjoy it while you can.
It is on Ion at 6:00 p.m. for an hour. It has no real competition in this slot.
I rate it 4.58

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Colbert Report

I can feel confident when I refer to myself as "The TV Sherpa" because I have over 50 years of TV watching experience. I recently came across this photo of me when I was 1. I'm not even sure the TV was on. It's hard to tell because the TV wasn't the greatest, nor was the camera. I'm pretty sure the camera was a Kodak Brownie, but who knows about the TV. Anyway, I have been watching plenty of TV lately, keeping up my usual grueling schedule of 16 hours per day. Yes, I am willing to do all this to bring everyone the reviews of the best (ok, sometimes "best" is an overenthusiastic term for the dreck I often watch) of TV shows not on the major channels. TV was once described as a vast wasteland. I consider it a sun soaked beach, and I walk along it with a metal detector. I find a lot of rusty bottlecaps, but I also find some cash and fine jewelry.

One of my all-time favorite shows is The Colbert Report. This spin off of The Daily Show with John Stewart is a send up of various "newsy" type shows. I'm sure there is a term for these shows. Infotainment may not quite be it, but it works on some level. Colbert (leave off the "T" both in his name and in report) himself has a very dry, sincere, yet almost deadpan delivery at times that works well when doing a spoof type show. He will stare into the camera, and address the audience as "Nation." He refers to us, his audience as "Heroes." Other times, he just goes so over the top that he is hilarious. Colbert does numerous "threatdowns." These are various threats to America, such as nuclear proliferation and bears. And he ranks them according to severity. Bears are either at the top, or very close to it. He is right on any story involving bears vs. man.

Almost daily, he has guests on his show, and these interviews are instant classics. Stephan manages to spin whatever they say to fit his faux "agenda" and "wins" every debate. The live audience seemingly cheers every utterance. Another very funny addition to this show is the "Dead to Me" list. On it, he has several groups that are, well, dead to him. He also does a segment "Better Know a District" in which he meets with the representative of a district and focuses on some tiny, unimportant detail. Again, it comes off much better than I could describe it. My favorite segment is "The Word." He will give his take on some subject, which is the word for the day, and on the split screen will be text disputing whatever he says. No way could I ever accurately portray the effect with mere words on this page. It has to be seen to be experienced properly. Colbert keeps the show fresh by having a tremendous mix of different segments. He avoids letting things become stale by repeating them ad nauseum. Every show is familiar, yet fresh and new. A perfect blend for this Sherpa.

The Colbert Report is on Comedy Central Monday to Thursday at 11:30 EST, immediately following the Daily Show. It is reported the following day several times throughout the day.

I rate it a perfect 10.

It's been a while, so here's a quick review of my ratings system:

10--a prime show. The Sopranos or 24 would rate a 10.

9-- definately worth watching. Think South Park or Seinfeld re-runs. Not as funny as the first time, but still great TV fare.

8-- Pretty darn good stuff. If you can't be home, you'd consider setting up the VCR. Some solid 8's would be Earl, or Everybody Hates Chris.

7-- Not quite good enough to tape. But you can look forward to watching. The Office is the first show that comes to mind as a 7.

6--Now we get into the shows that are ok, but only a first choice if other shows are re-runs.You won't mind watching a 6 at a different time. Britcoms are 6's.

5-- Think of a movie you liked, but have seen a dozen times or more.You'd choose the movie over the program, then the program is a 5. Mash and almost everything on TVLAND has become a 5.

4--Crappy show, but with some redeeming quality, like it features hot chicks. Any show with Pam Anderson would be a 4.

3--Only worth watching if the only alternative is infommercials. Fishing shows are 3.

2-- About the same as a good infommercial. QVC is a 2.

1-- Infommercials, unless they are The Knife Collector Show. They sell swords!

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Still A Yankees Fan

I've been a Yankees fan for a really long time. I'm not saying exactly how old this photo is, but the uniform is number 7, and the Caddy in the right rear looks to be a late 50's, early 60's model. It is pretty obvious I didn't just hop on the bandwagon. My first game was in '61, and the Chairman of the Board (if you think that's Frank Sinatra, stop reading now) was pitching for the Yankees against the hated Red Sox. That game set the tone for the rest of my life as a sports fan. I walked through the cold tunnels, and could peek down at the field. But when I first went through the entranceway that lead to our seats, I was overwhelmed. The grass was the greenest I had ever seen. More green than any crayon in my 64 count box of Crayolas. Our TV at home had been a black and white set, and I never even thought about how overwhelmingly green the Stadium grass could be.
As for the game itself, I remember a bunch of Yankees homers. I'm not sure who hit them, but I'm pretty sure Maris and /or The Mick belted at least one. And when it was all said and done, I remember leaving the Staium, and looking back at the scoreboard once more to see the final tally: NY 13 Boston 2.
Life was good. It was as it should be. Even today, I would rather see the Yankees win 13-2, than win 3-2. I thoroughly enjoy when they pound the snot out of the other team.
Now fast forward to today, 46 years later. Life kicks me in the 'nads rather regularly it seems.
But I still sit and watch the Yankees, my team, and feel somehow transported to a happier time and place. A-Rod makes what the entire team made back in '61. What am I saying? He makes about 10 times what the entire team made then. But it's not about the money. It's about the game. I don't remember a lot about what my Father ever bought me or said to me when I was a kid, but I remember that day when I went to see my first ball game at Yankees Stadium like it was yesterday.
Take a trip out to the ballyard today. And bring a kid. He or she may remember it, and you, forever.

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

A couple of maroons

Last night I was doing one of my favorite things. I was watching baseball. I can watch a softball game, Little League, high school, minor league, you name it. I'll even watch a men's beer league game. I really like the game. But the ultimate is watching Yankees games. I would be happiest in the right field bleachers, but due to so many factors, I haven't been at a game in a few years.

Anyway, while I'm enjoying what has become an all too infrequent Yankees win, I noticed some of the fans in the stadium. They were playing in Texas, home of the Rangers. And sitting in a prime seat, right behind home plate, first row, was a guy talking on his cell phone during the game. I have no idea what these seats sell for, but I do know they are among the most expensive in the park. And this maroon is on his damn phone! Seats like this are absolutely prime real estate. And this goof ball wasn't even watching the game. This really pissed me off, until I saw the guy behind him. Jumping up and down with a beer in his hand for most of the game, this guy was in the second row. Again, we are talking prime real estate. I'm guessing the tickets had to go for a hundred bucks a pop or more.
Why do I care about this drunken maroon? He was wearing a Mets Jersey. It looked to be one of the expensive Jerseys. Couple that with the seats he was sitting in, and the large number of rather expensive brews he quaffed, I can only assume this maroon has a few bucks.

So, I know he owns more than one friggin' shirt. To me, a baseball fan, it is pretty much the height of stupidity and rudeness to wear a shirt to a game from teams that aren't even in the friggin stadium. Ok, maybe if you had a classic shirt, like a Brooklyn Dodger Koufax, maybe I could understand that. As somewhat of a baseball history fan, I would probably enjoy seeing someone wear that. But, I can guaranfriggintee if some idiot shows up at Yankees Stadium, in the Bronx, anywhere near the bleacher section, wearing a shirt from any team that ain't in the building, said fan is getting a very well deserved beer shower.

I'm not advocating violence, but I am sure advocating using a little bit of sense and showing some respect for the game. If your team isn't in the building, wear a dayum Nike shirt, maroon.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Living La Vida Loca

My mother passed away earlier this week, and I started thinking about how she lived it. She worked full-time up until she was in her early 70's (her choice, not a financial necessity) and using old school thinking, she wouldn't retire because she had nothing else to do.
So, after working for a total of well over 50 years, she was able to retire and reach the stage of life where she did not have to be a slave to the alarm clock or to the whims of a corporate master. And it lasted all of 3 months. That's when she was diagnosed with the disease that would claim her life a few months later.

WTF is up with that? I accept that she lived life on her terms, but damn, I sure do not understand it.

Whenever the lottery would hit those huge amounts, I would dream about what I could do if I was fortunate enough to win. She once told me that she thought it would be awful to win, because what would I ever do all day long?

I guess this is the biggest difference between many of the old school types and me.

If I won the lottery, I would have no trouble filling up my day. Work sucks. I have never had a job that I wanted to do rather than goofing off. Sure, I have even had jobs I liked to do, but I would gladly be willing to be filthy rich and search out things to do.

The world is so open and full of promise and possibilities that I can't understand setting limits on oneself.

Just in my state alone, it seems that every week there is a festival or noteworthy event on a weekly basis. I would attend them all.

And, if I ever decided to venture out of state, the choices are endless.

Plays, concerts, and the best of everything known to man is within a short trip of my home.

That does not even come close to counting the number of leisure activities available to almost anyone.
Nearly any interest may be pursued.

Always interested in flying? Take lessons. Like old cars or trains? Join a heritage club and get involved. Like to help others? Hospitals, day care centers, and nursing homes would love to have volunteer help.

RIP, Mom. I never understood your choices, but am glad you made yours, not mine.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

I dunno

A lot of stuff been on my mind lately, and I haven't been blogging. I'd be happy to say that it was because I've been busy, but I'm basically just sitting on my butt, doing nothing. It's funny how nothing can just fill up a whole day sometimes.
Last week I had to get a new prescription for some super anti-biotic. I'm fortunate that I have insurance still, because otherwise it would have cost $2000 for a 2 week dosage. What do those without insurance or a spare 2 grand do? My guess, is they get more sick, and then wind up getting more expensive treatment. And, because a hospital can not turn anyone away, the treatment will be billed to the person. And if someone is saddled with a bill in the tens of thousands of dollars, they either will be bankrupted or they will not pay. I'm willing to bet it is the latter.
So, where's the logic? Don't help someone with a bill for a few thousand (or often considerably less) or don't help them with a bill for tens of thousands?
That is why I have become in favor of universal health care. I've heard the arguments about the cost. And, I'm not buying it. Yes, it will be expensive, but aren't we already footing most, if not all the bill already? Stop by an emergency room and look around. Many are poor people who can't afford a clinic or doctor. So they go to the hospital, at many times the cost of a doctor or clinic, and get treatment. Wouldn't it make more sense for them to go into a doctor and get much more affordable (for everyone) treatment?
It does to me. But I'm willing to bet during any discussion of this subject, it will be spun so it will never happen.
That is truly sad.

Saturday, April 07, 2007

Why I hate the AMA

I just got back from the doctor and my foot is infected again. It hurts like hell. I know in a little while it will stop, though. Just in the last 24 hours has been significant improvement.
Back to the AMA.
I was thinking this morning about my friend, Bill. Bill died about a year and a half ago. He was obese, and he went in for the gastric bypass. I warned him not to, but he was so sure it was safe.
The doctors told him there was some risk, but it was minimal. Less than 2% mortality.

They lied.

The actual mortality rate is much higher. For men, within one year of the operation it is around 10%. And no one tells that it will be a miserable year. My friend had the operation in March 2005, and except for about a two week period, spent the rest of his life between the nursing home and the hospital. During this time, he was put in a coma for months, and they amputated his leg. He could not have so much as a mouthful of water. He suffered until he bled to death and died around 6 months later. I guess he is on my mind today because he loved the Holidays. Christmas was huge for him. He decorated the house and really enjoyed the festivities. He also was a fan of Easter. When I visited him after he came out of his coma, he told me he was so excited that he may be going home for Easter. It hurt me to tell him that he had slept right through Easter. It was gone by over a month. Would Bill be here today if not for the operation? I don't know, but I do know he is dead because of it. And the medical establishment continues to put forward how wonderful this is.

God, or Darwin or whomever designed the human body had made mistakes, and only by mutilating it would it function properly. That is the opinion of the AMA, or at least how I can conclude this when I realize that they consider this mutilation a proper medical procedure.
I have seen so many of those uber fat people shows on Discovery. The ones where the guy or woman is between 700-1000 pounds. These shows bother me for a few reasons. First is that they focus on the tremendous volume that these folks eat. Second, they pay no attention to the causes. And I firmly believe there are causes for someone to gain that much weight. Some physical, some psychological.
I know some people who have eating disorders. They are not part of a freak show. Instead, they have serious issues. Every last one of them. I have a friend who ate 5 double cheeseburgers, and an order of fries. An hour later, she had two more double cheeseburgers and another fry. Does anyone think she was eating because she was hungry?

Hell no, she wasn't. Something was missing from her life.

I used to weigh a lot more than I do now. And I'm far from a lightweight today. But I look back at my life then, and I realize what the problem was. I was friggin miserable. And the only thing that made me happy was the time I spent eating. It gave me a little pleasurable respite from all the crap in my life. I've spoken to numerous individuals who are/were obese, and in nearly every case, it was the same story. Something was missing, and they sought to fill it.

And here is where the AMA is missing the boat. And just one more reason to hate them.

I believe, and so many individuals I have run into confirm it, counseling and support is more important for obesity than any pill or operation. Just look at how many people have had the bypass and then gain weight back. They had the corrective mutilation, they had the training, and they are right back on the path to obesity. How can anyone say it is physical? These individuals have a psychological dependency on food. And no operation, pill or plan is going to cure that.
Also, I have been studying nutrition. I have found a plan that works very well for me. If I had this from the beginning, I probably would never have become overweight to begin with.
Instead, the dairy industry, and the beef industry have lobbied to make these important and accepted parts of our typical diet.
Since I eliminated these foods and all but became a vegan, my diabetes is under control, and I am losing weight. I'm rarely hungry, and doing well. If I could walk, I'm sure the excess pounds would melt away. It's slow because my metabolism is at a standstill due to inactivity.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Post 100


This is number 100, and how appropriate that this is about my favorite thing in the world.

Yankees Baseball!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The season opened today, and the most dominating team in the world today began their assualt on the World Championship.

The Tampa Bay Devil Rays, usually an annoying nemesis was easily dispatched 9-5, as the Bombers used power and pitching to do them in.

A-Rod and Posada homered, while Giambi knocked in three.

The pitching, while not stellar, was more a result of bad fielding rather than Pavano's efforts. You can't keep giving the other guys extra outs. 3 infield errors is not a good sign. But hopefully, it was just some early season miscues due to the damp weather and overcast skies.

The bullpen did shut them down, though, as they completely shut down the Rays for the final 4 innings. And Rivera was lights out in the ninth as he struck out the side.

And just as important, the arch-rival Red Sox were smacked around by the Royals 7-1. Yeah, those Royals.


But, it's a long season, and the fun is just beginning.

GO YANKEES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Sunday, April 01, 2007

Happy Birthday to Me

In a way, today is a surprise party for me.

I was told by a doctor many years ago, around 1982 or so, that if I didn't change my ways, I would not make it to 30. And age 40 was almost out of the question.

Well, today I'm 52. I've treated my body like a friggin' amusement park for most of the years after I was given a virtual death sentence. It's only in the last year or two that I have really gotten serious about improving my health. And surprisingly, my health has declined significantly during this time.

WTF is up with that?

I've been eating vegetables. I've been eating salads. (Regular readers will remember I almost had a salad kill me a few weeks ago.) I eat whole grains, and almost never eat meat. I even exercise a bit. I can't walk, so it's not like I go jogging, but I use my Suzanne Somers ThighMaster regularly : ).

I've been losing weight, and hardly drink. Again--WTF?

Years ago my father once stated, (he was kind of goofy) that health food is bad for you. It'll kill you. I always figured it was his usually screwed up view of things, but maybe he was right. Health food hasn't been a panacea for me, I'll tell you.

But, for today, I'll keep on doing what seems to be the right way to do things.

I've been taking a more positive outlook on things lately. Sure, most days I start with an attitude of wondering who peed in my corn flakes this morning, but I'm trying like hell to think, it's not pee, it's soymilk.

And, things have been getting better. Just today, I found out that I have my name on the state unclaimed property list. Maybe it's that mil 5 I forgot about, or some incredibly wealthy distant relative that left me an immense fortune. But most likely it's some bank account with a buck three ninety five. Still, hope springs eternal.

I sit here today, banging on this keyboard, and life is pretty good. I have a lot of friends, both in my RL and in my cyber life. I treasure them all. I have a good woman who cares for me, as I do her, and a daughter who loves me. The kiddo is even planning to visit me today, so I am pretty happy about that.

But most of all, I feel that I have hope for tomorrow. Sure, the odds are I'm going to have a heart attack and die in a year or two (everyone knows I'm the least lucky guy on the friggin planet) but for today, I feel like I may beat the odds. Today, I look forward rather than backwards. It's a good feeling.

Saturday, March 31, 2007

Opening Day is April 2nd

My New York Yankees, aka The Evil Empire, are ready for the season. And on April 2nd they take on the Tampa Bay Devil Rays to get it going.

Opening Day is probably the best day of the year. It is the official sign that winter is over, sure, but it is more than that. It is a day of hope. My team, no, every team, has a perfect record. No player has struck out with a runner on third, just as no two strike fastball caught a bit too much of the plate and was dropped in for an inning stretching single. Every team from the lowly Pirates up to the highly rated (and much hated) Boston Red Sox has hopes for the season.

Opening Day, in a way, is a metaphor for life itself.

It is a new beginning. And while we may not all reach the ultimate goal, a World Series Championship for the Yankees, whatever we desire for the rest of us, we all approach it filled with hope. All the errors of last year, the bloops and blunders, mean nothing on Opening Day. Just as our mistakes of the past mean nothing. Sure, A-Rod may have to deal with the memories of last year. This is just as I have to handle the many disappointments of my last few years. But Opening Day wipes the slate clean, for A-Rod, and for me.

Here's hoping for a great season for the Yankees from the new and improved crotchety old man.

Monday, March 26, 2007

Welcome to the new and improved crotchety old man

So far, I have embraced my new attitude of being positive and looking for good things for about 12 hours.
Woofreakinghoo. My life is like a nonstop party right now. It is all lollipops and rainbows. I just saw a unicorn grazing outside in my yard.

Ok, this new attitude isn't really working for me right now. I've heard of "fake it 'til you make it," but don't know if I have it in me. I'm not a big fan of putting on a happy face when I'm friggin' cranky. But I'm trying it. I'm committed to it.

I'l start with a short gratitude list.

What 5 things am I grateful for having in my life?

1. My honey
2. My friends
3. My car
4. My kid
5. I still have my foot, more or less.

Pretty pathetic, but it's a start.

Funny that I was able to come up with 101 things that pissed me off with no problem, but 5 things that make me happy was a struggle.


Peeling Onions part 6

The next installment in the saga aka "What the hell is up with this whiney puke, today?"

This little tune is bouncing around in my head tonight:

Some things in life are bad,
They can really make you mad,
Other things just make you swear and curse,
When you're chewing life's gristle,
Don't grumble,Give a whistle
And this'll help things turn out for the best.
And...Always look on the bright side of life.[whistle]
Life's a piece of shit,
When you look at it.
Life's a laugh and death's a joke it's true.
You'll see it's all a show.
Keep 'em laughing as you go.
Just remember that the last laugh is on you.
And...Always look on the bright side of life.

I have no idea why that was in my head, but it was contributing to keeping me awake.

So, anyway, I have been reading and watching (yeah, I watch about 15 hours of TV per day, sometimes more) and lately, it seems that attitude has been mentioned frequently as a part of the healing process. It's probably been there all along, but I'm just noticing it lately. Maybe that is where the song came from.
Nevertheless, I'm still not healing, and it seems sometimes like it is getting worse.
It is hard to look on the bright side of life, but I'm trying. It has been suggested I put my emotional baggage, my stuff as it were, in a trunk and shove it out in the shed. I'm trying, because when I keep it here next to me, I go through it every day, and get that shit all over my hands.

So, I guess this is a positive blog entry. I'm trying to be more positive in my life. I'm going to start to look for the good in situations. I'm going to stop being a self-loathing, cranky old man. For today.
Worrying doesn't help, and it sure as heck makes things worse. So, I'll just wait and see what happens.
Next week is my birthday, and it is kind of funny. I was reminded today that over 25 years ago, I was told I had maybe 4 years to live, and 10 at the outside. Apparently, the doctor thought that would scare me into walking the straight and narrow. Instead it sent me on a narrow path straight to a bar.
I don't know what would have worked, but I do know telling me I was going to die was meaningless. It made me party even more. I was pretty unhappy with my life, so dying sure wasn't a negative outcome. Especially if I could do so after a good night at the bar.
I think what frustrates me most is that I have, and continue to try to do better, yet get knocked on my ass anyway.
For today, I'll get up and continue to move ahead. Slow progress, even immeasureable progress, is still progress.

That's my goal for today.

Friday, March 23, 2007

South Park

This is one of my all-time favorite shows. It is unbelievably topical as the lead in time for the show is days, not weeks or months like with other animated shows.
But what is most surprising is that while topical, the shows stand up to the test of time. That is, I can watch an old episode and it is usually every bit as funny as the day the show first aired. And what is the best part of the show is that it seems to get better every season. Sure, the animation is terrible, but the writing is as tight as ever. And, unlike other shows that have been around for years, no new characters have emerged. No new best friends named Ernie, and no Ted McGinley.
While Butters has had a greatly expanded role, he is still a bit player compared to Kenny, Cartman, Stan, and Kyle.
And Timmy and Jimmy appear just often enough that we don't get tired of them.
I really thought that after Chef left the show, there would be a drop off, but, no, the show just keeps on rolling along.
What I like best about the show is that new characters come in, like Towelie or Mr. Hanky, and then they disappear. Towelie was an awesome character, and they easily could have made him a regular, but it would have changed the dynamics of the show. Mr. Hanky was in a few episodes early on, but he hasn't been seen in quite a while. Again, this is a positive as the show is about the adventures of the 4 boys and their friends. Ike, the parents, Mr./Mrs. Garrison, Mr. Mackie, Mr. Slave, and so many others are featured in an episode or two, and then get back into an ancilliary role. The show stays fresh without the confusion of so many characters. This formula that worked for the Simpsons, and they are in year 16 or so.

I look forward to many more years of enjoying South Park.

And I know they will remain Ted McGinley free.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Has 24 Jumped the shark?

First, of course, it should be defined what is jumping the shark?
Directly from the jump the website, here is the definition:
Q. What is jumping the shark?
A. It's a moment. A defining moment when you know that your favorite television program has reached its peak. That instant that you know from now's all downhill. Some call it the climax. We call it "Jumping the Shark." From that moment on, the program will simply never be the same.
The term "jump the shark" was coined by site founder Jon Hein & his college roommate of 4 years, Sean J. Connolly, in Ann Arbor, Michigan back in 1985. This web site, book, film, and all other material surrounding shark jumping, are hereby dedicated to "the Colonel."
The aforementioned expression refers to the telltale sign of the demise of Happy Days, our favorite example, when Fonzie actually "jumped the shark." The rest is history.

And there you have it.
Any time Ted McGinley, the patron saint of jumping the shark shows up, you know that the show has jumped. Not that Ted isn't a fine actor (see Revenge of the Nerds, one of the TV Sherpa's all-time favorite movies) but when he shows it is because the show is on the way out. Whether he is the TV equivalent of an EMS or a mortician, I'm not sure. But I do know when Ted shows up, it is a matter of time until the show ends.
I haven't seen Ted on 24 (yet) but I have seen the indications that 24 may have jumped the shark. And that herald is named Ricky Schroeder. I still like the show. It is still exciting, and I remain a big fan, but Ricky Schroeder?
The writers killed off the guy who played Curtis, and replaced him with Ricky Schroeder. And Ricky plays a mean, doesn't play by the rules type tough government agent. I just can't accept this. I'll watch the remainder of this season, but this will probably be my last. It is only a matter of time until Ted McGinley shows up as Jack's romantic rival for wait... Jack has no romantic interests because they have killed off everyone who has ever snuggled with him. Except for that one woman who didn't know he was Jack. And she hasn't been around for a while.
Maybe she is now living with Ted McGinley.

I am making it official.

24 has jumped the shark.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

What am I cranky about today?

I wake up, and I'm in a pretty good mood. I'm as shocked as you are. But it is just a matter of time until someone or something pisses me off.
I was watching the news, and it was reported that a school janitor (in his 50's) raped an 8 year-old girl multiple times over the past month or so. WTF?
8 years old? Rape is heinous enough, but an 8 year old? This proves once again that rape is a crime of violence, not one of passion.
When I worked at the Job Corps, I taught a course I called sex and drugs 101. I don't remember what it actually was called, but basically, I taught young adults about sex and drugs. It wasn't a how-to course, but instead it gave them information to stay safe and healthy.
One part of the course involved giving them a test, and one of the questions on it concerned rape. One of the answers indicated that if a woman dressed a certain way, she was "asking for it." Believe it or not, many, if not most, honestly answered and believed that rape was inevitable (perhaps even justifiable) if a woman dressed provocatively. Most surprisingly, this was the answer given by both sexes. When I questioned the women, especially, I was shocked when they confirmed that yes, hootchie mamas should expect to be raped because of how they dressed. WTH?

These were women saying this. Women who were around 20. Not kids who wouldn't know any better, but young adults. Some had kids of their own.
It made me very sad that these women, most of whom had such a sense of bravado, considered themselves to be... hell, I don't know what they considered themselves to be. But they did know that if they dressed "sexy" they should expect to be violated.
This was an attitude that one may have expected to find in the 1930's, not in the 21st century. But, there it was, right in front of my face.

Apparently, the attitude continues as an 8 year old was raped. Maybe she was dressed up, and turned the piece of crap on. I just feel dirty typing that.
This makes me angry, then so very sad.
No child should suffer from abuse, sexual or otherwise.

We need to be more aggressive as a society in dealing with such predators. I can almost guarantee that this isn't the first time this man has violated a female, and most likely not the first child.

Words are so inadequate at times.

Monday, March 19, 2007

Where you at?

I lived through the 60's where everything was "cool."

It was a universal term that just fit any situation. Everything was either cool, or not cool. No problem and cool became the most used word in our lexicon. And I was cool with that.

Then sometime in the late 80's or early 90's everything became "excellent." Curse you Bill and Ted!
Excellent was used to describe everything, replacing every single adjective in the English language. It even had degrees. Things could be most excellent, although I don't remember things being less or not excellent. Excellent never did acquire the level of "cool."

And somewhere in between, the kiddie set was indoctrinated with the acceptance of paucity of language by those ridiculous little incestuous blue critters from France, the Smurfs. The Smurfs just reinforced among our youngest and most vulnerable linguists that it was ok to have the verbal skills of an infant. Why develop a decent vocabulary when "Smurfy" described every situation? Have a Smurfy day, you are looking quite Smurfy, and of course, this is quite Smurfy.

And now today, the rap culture is creating an entirely new set of words and meanings.

Bling? What is that? Is that better or worse than bling bling? I have no friggin idea.
And currently, a relatively new commercial is airing. It is for a cell phone that tells one where the party one is talking to is located. I have no idea why anyone would want this feature. But the conversation is basically, "Where you at?" "I know where I'm at, where you at?" It goes on for the lenghth of the commercial with this inane crap.

When Meucci (don't believe that bull about Bell) invented the telephone, I do not believe for a minute that he ever envisioned his method of communication would ever be used for such trivial crap as this. Sadly, this is what it has devolved into.
A bunch of nearly illiterate morons, speaking what can barely be considered English, chatting endlessly about nothing.

So, what am I ranting about?

I suppose it's just that language is taking another kick in the head. New words constantly come into being. We need them because we constantly invent new stuff. Ancient Greeks and Romans didn't have computers, cars, jets and Big Macs, so we needed to name them. And gradually, our language became more developed and colorful.
It seems that now it is just getting stupid. Put any words in any order and try to figure out WTH the speaker is trying to say. I'm not saying that we all need to speak the Queen's English, but at least we should all get on the same friggin page.


Sunday, March 18, 2007

People in My Path

I'm not what would be considered an overly religious guy. I do believe in a Higher Power, who I refer to as God. I also somewhat follow the rules of Christianity. Ok, not all of them, just the ones I like.
But I do like to go to church on Sundays and some holidays, and when I can't, I tune in on TV. I also like to watch some of the TV ministers. I have even sent in money to a few that I found really helpful. One that I really enjoy is Joel Osteen. I try to watch him at least once every Sunday, and to be honest, sometimes his message is so good, I listen to him more than once.
Today, his message was really appropriate to my situation. He spoke that God sometimes puts people in our path who become an important part of our journey.
I was especially interested in this sermon because I have a friend who I have known for about a year who has become very dear to me. I truly believe this person has been put in my path by a Higher Power. On a regular basis, this wonderful person gives me so much inspiration and encouragement. I truly feel that I am not worthy.

In fact, it is funny. A lot of people have been very good to me. I have friends who I talk to on a regular basis. And, the most interesting part is that the overwhelming majority are friends I have made in the last relatively few years. Not that I don't have friends that I have known for decades, but I rarely interact with them. I could pick up the phone and talk to them any time, but it kind of bothers me that they have not reached out and called me. I wonder why.
Maybe, as today's sermon suggested, it is not important to think about this too much. Just realize that more great people are in my path, and just accept it.

For today, I will act as if I am worthy to have all these friends and be happy that they are in my path.

Saturday, March 17, 2007

St. Patrick's Day

This is one Holiday that kind of annoys me. I fully understand that people of Irish descent are proud of their heritage, and to be honest, the Irish people have done much to make America great.
So far, all is good. But here is where they get me pissed.
The overwhelming majority of those quaffing green beer and eating corned beef and cabbage know almost nothing about St. Patrick.

In fact, the majority can't tell you when he lived within 500 years. (around 450 A.D.) and almost no one knows where he was born (either great Britain or Scotland.) I don't really care that most celebrants aren't exactly scholars, but could they art least have some knowledge of the man they toast with such vigor. About the only "fact" most of them "know" is that he chased the snakes out of Ireland. This is a legend and not true. But who can stop anyone making a toast while consuming vast quantities of Guiness? I heard that as many as 150,000 glasses per second will be consumed today, in honor of St. Patrick. Corned beef and cabbage is about as Irish as pizza and pasta. But, I digress.

On to my rant.

Patrick was born to Roman parents (would that make him Italian?) and he had a very colorful life. He was a prisoner, and after he escaped, he then went back with a mission; to convert his previous captors and to minister to the Christians already living in Ireland.

Patrick was a man to be honored. He helped to change an entire nation.

But please, honor his memory with a little decorum, and some knowledge.

St. Patrick deserves better than to have a bunch of knuckleheads spewing green beer in a gutter following a night of drinking and debauchery.

Friday, March 16, 2007

Game Shows are Getting Worse

I have always been a big fan of game shows. I watched Jeopardy back before Alex Trebeck, when Art Fleming was the host. I have a love -hate relationship with most game shows, though.

Very little middle ground with me and my game shows.

I watch the re-runs on Game Show Network along with some of the newer ones like Lingo.
Hollywood Squares, Match Game, and dozens of others are among the best TV ever. I remember visiting my Aunt Josie after school and watching Password and You Don't Say with her. It was fun and the company was as good as the games on TV.
To Tell the Truth, along with so many other game shows are buried deep in the happy memories part of my brain. But, I also have some game shows that just piss me off. I have already ranted about the Price is Right, but it seems that a huge group of awful game shows are being cranked out. While I do like Deal or No Deal, 1 vs. 100 is kind of dumb, and Identity is pretty stupid, too.
But over the last few weeks, I have watched what may be the most gawdawful game show ever.
"Are You Smarter than a Fifth Grader?"
I like the concept. It is kind of funny. But, to make the show work, they have to assemble the dumbest individuals who are allowed to legally walk around without adult supervision.
So far, I have seen two or three episodes and have answered every question correctly. Woohoo! Big F'ing deal. I am smarter than a 5th grader. Didn't everybody already know that?
But that is not my point. These contestants are friggin morons. I can understand having a problem with math. If one hasn't needed to find the area of a triangle since high school, it is entirely possible that the formula is forgotten. No big deal. But not to be sure of the country that is north of the USA? What friggin rock did that contestant climb out from under?
Another idiot did not know the area of a square. And he supposedly was a contractor. Please God, never let me enter a house that was built by that maroon.
Last night's episode had the contestant answering questions that were for 1st and 2nd graders, and she danced when she got them right like she just proved the theory of relativity. Have the producers trolled the hallways of a lobotomy clinic to get contestants? These mouth breathers make Wheel of Fortune players look like rocket scientists.
What bothers me most is not that these people get hung up on one question. It could happen to anyone. I'm sure if I was on TV, I may forget one of the easy answers. I may even forget my name. But these dopes couldn't answer hardly any questions. They have 3 "helps." And so far, every contestant has needed to use every one of them. And I have yet to see a contestant get any higher than 4th grade questions. To make matters even worse, the game is ridiculously slow paced. The dullards have to spend an inordinate amount of time trying to figure out these "questions."
At first, I was afraid that maybe the contestants might read this and feel badly. But then I realized that I used some big words, so they wouldn't even understand what I wrote.
Hey contestants:
Good job!