Saturday, April 30, 2005

Which hand do you use?

While taking a shower yesterday I poured shampoo into my left hand before smearing it into my hair. For a second I didn't know what to do with it. I hadn't realized before that moment that since day one I had been holding the shampoo bottle in my left hand and pouring the shampoo into the palm of my right hand. I stood there for a second while my brain adjusted itself to the new configuration. My body had been so conditioned to applying shampoo to my scalp with my right hand that when I attempted to do it with my left it was like I was performing the task backwards. I got through it but a shower is supposed to be a serene activity not one of such shock.

Wednesday, April 27, 2005

Irresponsible journalism

Here is the current headline on Drudgreport: "WHITE HOUSE SPOKESMAN MCCLELLAN CALLS AIR AMERICA SKIT 'VERY INAPPROPRIATE AND OVER THE LINE'"

Here is the exchange from McClellan's press briefing from today that this headline is lifted from: "Q: If I could get your comment on another matter, somewhat off the news. Yesterday on the radio network Air America, there was a skit that went like this -- an announcer said, "A spoiled child is telling us our Social Security isn't safe anymore so he's going to fix it for us, well here's your answer you ungrateful" -- and there was then an audio sound of four gunshots. "Just try it, you little bastard," the announcer continued. And there was the audio of a gun being cocked. Do you have any comment on that?

MR. McCLELLAN: I haven't heard anything about it until you must mentioned it, but it sounds very inappropriate and over the line to me from the way you described it."

That's it, I'm through with Drudge. I like to go there because he does link to interesting stories but this is jut plain lying.

Tuesday, April 26, 2005

I dreamed I went home during lunch

Actually I did. Coming back to work is the dreamy part. I shot outta here about 7 minutes after four. Swung by Qdoba, grabbed me a beef burrito and jetted over to my home for a quiet 35 minutes of chomping. For my lunch entertainment I watched a section of my Bill Hicks DVD (the part about wanting his rock stars dead). My after lunch entertainment was a quick game of NCAA March Madness on the ole Xbox. Usually I lay down and close my eyes for a fifteen minutes when I go home for lunch but today I desired some video game action. I'll sleep when I'm on vacation in about eight days.
He's so open to other cultures

You know, I've seen teenage Japanese girls do this and it's cute. With these two it's...uhhhh...not so cute.

Monday, April 25, 2005

Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Hot diggity!

I just got back from the the Evening Muse (a great little club we should all frequent more often). What musician did I see tonight? I'm glad you asked. I saw Dave Alvin play an acoustic show. Well, not entirely acoustic. His sideman was playing a Fender Stratocaster for most of the night. Now and then he would sit down and play a lap steel. I don't want to stoop to hyperbole but it was like seeing Neil Young, Bob Dylan or Paul Kelly in a small room. It couldn't have been better. Here's a picture of Dave. See, he's smiling and having a good time and so was I. Where in the hell were you?
Another trip to the Cafe Wha?

I've been thinking about this quote all day and all I can think of is either Tom Delay as completely flipped his top or he must have done some seriously unethical shit to get this bombastic about judges. I don't recall ever hearing about a politician so specifically singling out a Supreme Court Justice before. Maybe it happened in the past. Lots of things went of 100 years ago that don't take place these-a-days. If you haven't read it allow me to quote it hear:

"Asked if he would include any Supreme Court justices among those he considers activist and isolated, DeLay singled out Justice Anthony M. Kennedy, who was named to the court by President Ronald Reagan. "Absolutely," DeLay replied. "We've got Justice Kennedy writing decisions based upon international law, not the Constitution of the United States. That's just outrageous. And not only that, but he said in session that he does his own research on the Internet? That is just incredibly outrageous.""

I took this from the Illustrated Daily Scribble site. He did a good cartoon about the internet portion of this quote. I saw that too and wondered about it. Does this guy even remotely know what he is talking about? I almost expect him to call it "the internets." I do see where he is coming from though. No decent American would use the same tool to do legal research that can also be used to download pictures of Jesse Helms fucking sheep. That would be ludicrous. I keep hoping these nutjobs keep going over the deep end so that eventually even their supporters are going to open the paper one day and say, "What the fuck? Lesbians stole your soul? Who elected these goobers?"

Tuesday, April 19, 2005

No one has said this better yet

From Freeman Dyson's 'New York Review of Books' review of "Armageddon: The Battle for Germany" by Max Hastings: "The history of World War II teaches us several lesson that are still valid today. First is the immense importance of the Geneva Conventions on humane treatment of prisoners in mitigating the human costs of war...It is not possible to calculate the numbers of lives saved in the West and lost in the East (European fronts). The numbers certainly amount to hundreds of thousands in the West and millions in the East. Americans who are trying today to weaken or evade the Geneva rules are acting shortsightedly as well as immorally."

Once again may god continue to bless George W. Bush.
Them two poets

I've been reading this guy's poetry and essays for years now. It's good to see he has a new book out. It's funny I saw someone mention Jane Kenyon on the likes column of their blog today and now I see this story about her husband, Donald Hall. Funny how stuff like that works.
So normal it hurts

"Mr. Hughes told about an exchange in which Speer said that architecture was certainly one way to unite a people, but that if the Nazis had had television, there would have been no stopping them.

Mr. Crumb, finishing his plate of baked chicken, beamed. "Oh, that's great," he said. "It's true.""

Monday, April 18, 2005

All that and he likes kids too!

Ladies, I present to you the world's most eligible bachelor and the baby he rode in on.

Thursday, April 14, 2005

I had no idea

You know, I just assumed that Britain had rabbits. I had no idea the Romans brought them over. I can see the ancient Brits having their secret revolutionary meetings like in The Life of Brian.

"What have the Romans ever done for us?"

"Well, Reg, there are the roads."

"Of course, the roads. The roads go without saying."

"And rabbits. They brought over rabbits."

"OK, rabbits sure. But what else have the Romans done for us?"
This morning

When I woke up today I was nestled cozily in the fog between being fully awake and being back in dreamland and I heard a car alarm. No wait, it's a bird. Nope, car alarm. Uh uh, bird. Wait a minute, it's a mockingbird imitating a car alarm. Cool, what time is it? Am I late for work? Am I still on earth?

Monday, April 11, 2005

The great baseball booktalk tour

Today I had to present my baseball booktalk again. This time I presented it at the North County Regional branch. It went well but it's a little frustrating and also relieving when your audience is mostly staff. One older gentleman was in attendance and he came only becuase of the topic of the talk, which was nice. He was the most interested member of the audience and he posed a few good questions and he was really attentive. I'm still not accustomed to talking in public and having people listening who are actually interested in what I have to say. Must be a self confidence thing but we won't go into that.

Booktalks are like the first time you have sex with someone. Initially you are tentative and unsure and check your notes a lot. After a while you forget you are performing and dive right in and everyone there has a good time. The last few books of todays' talk I breezed through with minimal note checking. I always know I'm doing well when I can do that.

If anyone is out there and is looking for a good new book about baseball I would recommend the book "Three nights in August" by Buzz Bissinger. Horrible name for an adult, I know but a good book nonetheless. You really should read it only if you are into the minute details what it takes to be a manager of a major league baseball team. It focuses on what Tony Larussa went through while preparing for and directing his team through an important three game series against the Cubs in August of 2003. Not since "Men at work" by that conservative columnist have I come across a book that really lets you know what is going on during a Major League baseball game. Most books I have read concentrated on mindsets of the players, their backgrounds and the interaction between them and their surroundings but most don't delve into the inner workings of baseball. This one does that without sounding like a textbook.

Sunday, April 10, 2005

He said

The only reason I recognize you is because I knew you when you was young.

Saturday, April 09, 2005

It's a style

I forgot to mention one thing about the auto fair that really stood out. About one quarter of the men there had Dale Earnhardt® moustaches. This particular style is about medium length hairwise but it extends just a bit over the corners of the mouth. His legacy lives on.
What the fuck?

Let's see, they control the house and senate, their monkey boy is in the Whitehouse and now the judiciary has the gall to independently interpret the law? This will not stand. I love the last paragraph. After a bunch volatile rhetoric Delay has to say, "Oh, and you reactionary hillbillies, please don't kill anybody." Of course if they do, his hands are now clean.

Friday, April 08, 2005

Cars out the ying yang

Today my friend Chris and I went to the Food Lion Auto Fair at the Lowe's Motor Speedway. I've always wanted to check it out and I had the day off and an extra ten bucks to blow on admission.

There was a shitload of people there and cars lined around the whole 1 1/2 mile track. There were a lot of sweet hotrods there. There was even a Ford GT which had a speedometer there went up to 220 mph. It looked like a damn spaceship. There were about ten guys in constant motion around that baby. The only disappointment for me was that the show was heavy on American muscle cars and less than ten percent of the vehicles were manufactured before 1940. Ah well, you can't have everything.

Walking into the place Chris got nabbed by a reporter from Channel 9. Of course the first thing you think of when you see a channel 9 news truck is "Was somebody in the auto fair killed?" Turns out that no one had been killed. The reporter was trying to find people that were angry that the city took so long to expand the roads around the track. Chris is a talker and I think the reporter got more than he bargained for in him. The cameraman turned his camera off after a while and Chris and reporter kept talking.


Other than looking at cool cars the other reason I wanted to go was so I could walk around freely on the track. That was a lot of fun. At one point I climbed to the top of turn four and got a great view of the entrance to pit road and the slope down onto the front stretch dogleg. To me it was like standing in center field of Tiger Stadium. Here is a shot of Chris walking down the 24 degree banking of turn three.


I hope these pictures are viewable tomorrow because I haven't paid my cable bill yet.

Wednesday, April 06, 2005

It is here

Tomorrow I am going to do the first of three presentations of my booktalk about baseball. This is my third in 18 months and I'm still a bundle of nerves. Jeez, what a wuss. Just like before I''ve prepared a lot. In fact I tried to go over my notes one more time earlier and I was just sick of them. That's always a good sign. Now it's time to just show up tomorrow and wow the folks.

I was going to initially talk about both fiction and nonfiction books about baseball. The problem was that most of what I could find wasn't all that interesting. I did come across one called "The New York Yanquis" which is about a NY Yankees team with only Cuban players on it. That's an interesting idea but I passed. Besides, there are so many nonfiction books about baseball why clutter up the talk with novels?

Tuesday, April 05, 2005

He shoots, he scores

Just got done watching the NCAA mens basketball final a short while ago. My roommate graduated from UNC Chapel Hill and his old college buddy came by to watch it with us. The one big loud guy came by early in the first half and enjoyed the game with us also. There is just no sports tournement on this dying planet more entertaining than this one. And tonight we got to witness a fantastic college basketball game. It had heroics and heartbreak and it was close at the end. The UNC graduates in the room hooted and hollered and did little happy dances after their team won while and Chris and I just leaned back and quietly appreciated the gutsy play of both teams. Sports doesn't get much more pure than what I witnessed tonight.

Monday, April 04, 2005

Howdy

According to the TV the Pope is still dead.

Speaking of dead, I almost killed my roommate today. We went to Park Road Park so we could use the batting cage to take some batting practice. I tossed pitches to Wendell for about ten minutes and then took a turn. I was getting some good whacks in. It felt real good. You know when you get that good stroke going and when you swing through the ball and when it jumps off your bat you almost don't feel it? After a few minutes of hitting I started to get a few of those. I was surprised by how quickly I got the good stroke back.

The cage has a net that stands up and has a hole in it which the pitcher can toss the ball through. Wendell pitched one high and outside and I reached out and hit it easily back towards the net. There is a two by four buried on the ground in front of the net and the ground ball hit it. It bounced up through the hole and hit Wendell in the face. He jerked back like he'd been shot, went down to his knees and started spitting blood on the ground. His nose was bleeding and the inside of both his lips had been cut by his teeth. I went to the restroom hoping to grab some paper towels. Of course the bathroom only had blow dryers. I got back to the batting cage and he was dazed but seemed OK.

We ended our practice session and trudged back to the car after the bleeding slowed down. By the time we got back home his bleeding had stopped and I checked WebMD to see if stitches were recommended. The cuts weren't all the deep and weren't long so we figured he was OK.

Jesus, that scared the shit out of me but it worked out OK. Thank god I didn't hit that comebacker very hard or there could have been serious trouble.