Thursday, July 27, 2006

Oh the games we must play

I've recently discovered that the fountain of youth is just a pond in some random person's backyard (probably the house over on Briar, right?) that isn't filtered or cleaned frequently which leaves serious doubt to whether it'll withstand the test of time much less a chlorine tablet. I was reading through junk on the internet, you know; Hellzobah vs. Isreal, vice versus, whether Miami Vice will suck without pastel and flamingos, whether an 85 year old man can hit a minor league fastball, and most recently was the story about our modern day version of Fred McGriff...Harold Reynolds being fired from ESPN.

Under a bunch of pre-written publicist babble on different newspaper websites, the only thing that caught my attention was that Harold hugged some girl and she took it the wrong way. Now if my memory does serve me correct hugging is extremely inappropriate sexual behavior. Remember Clinton was seen hugging that intern, Roge was seen hugging ReRun on What's Happening Now and that ended the show, I've seen soccer players hugging each other after a goal, Big Papi hugs everyone after a homerun, politicians make a living off of hugging babies and kissing mamas' or is that the other way around. Anyway, I know that there is big misrepresentation about hugging that some feel it's offensive like Jerry Seinfeld hated the kiss hello, but I really don't know where it crosses the line. Maybe it's when you hug another co-worker of the opposite sex in public like say Outback in between the wheat rolls and the Victoria's Fillet. Maybe it's taken out of context by other co-workers say a jealous co-worker who sees this as an opportunity for advancement or revenge.

What makes it look very suspicious iswhen ESPN fires a longtime analyst right after they signed him to a seven year contract and right before he does the staple event for which he is best known for (Little League World Series). I worked with Harold Reynolds at the College World Series. It was one of the best things I've ever done while working for ESPN. He struck me as one of the nice guys in the business. He always talked about the game he loves so honestly, never once got ego-tripped, and he was one of the few people who remembered my name after the first time we met. I have nothing but good things to say about him which is why I'm shocked to see him no longer amongst the ESPN family. I just hope that they can solve this issue without it escalating and put it behind like an awkward hug hello.

Thursday, July 20, 2006

Trade Deadline and the Girlfriend

Baseball and relationships? They go hand in hand. I one time tried to relate a relationship to a badly turned 4-6-3 double play. It wasn't good. When we get near this time of the year in the baseball season (Trade Deadline) it gets me to thinking about relationships.

If we could only manage our relationships like we would our own team. I'm no Billy Beane, but I would love to be Theo for a day. With the trade deadline looming and my Red Sox in need of another starter I felt compelled to see the similarities between the trade deadline and the girlfriend.

I once was in a relationship that had plenty of upside that's all I could see it at the beginning of the season. She had some offense and plenty of opportunities for her to get better as she moved up through the minors, but she couldn't hit a changeup and in the majors that's killer. It was at this precise moment I would have loved to make a trade. See what someone else is offering that may make my team so much better. In that case, we needed more offense because she really didn't bring it when it mattered most. Such as holidays, vacations, dinner, and most notably social situations. If I could have traded some of her personality traits in for something was better it could have made the season salvagable.

I could just see it now. I would be calling up a buddy of mine at 2am in the morning... I'll give you Jody and a girl to be named later for Priscilla and cash. This could make relationships better and give girls a better chance of finding the man of their dreams. Of course there would be girls with no trade clauses. You can't have Jennifer Anniston going to the Royals. She top caliber with the option to decline a lower eschleon team. So we would have to have a commissioner that could veto trades almost like a Chuck Woolery type to make things even. Plus after the trades everything could be nixed if one of the girls fails her physical. I'm not saying this would work, but I always thought about this as an opportunity for both the man and woman to better their options. Lucky for me I've locked up my girl for a life-time contract with a no-trade clause. Sometimes we break the curse and end up winning the World Series.

Friday, July 14, 2006

When the levee breaks. The Big Dig will fall.

Everytime I hear an argument or debate about whether they should rebuild the levees in New Orleans my mind gets restless with disappointment. As I read over the past week about how a woman was tragically killed while driving through the Big Dig or the Carwash I was suddenly reminded about how much money we all spent to build that damn conundrum. 4 1/2 billion federal taxpayers dollars. That's you and me, boss. Not the state of Massachusetts with it's finely elected Senator Kennedy who pushed for this massive project.

I remember when they started the project back in 1998 with the completion coming a year ago under much constraint about overspending. Now they are noticing that bolts are popping out of the walls to which tons of concrete are falling on cars. This means that have to go back and fix the problem. More of our money being wasted. Though when it comes to figuring out how to keep New Orleans safe from hurricanes senators and reps are bickering about the need to save a city. It's just a lousy city with a great port. That's all. Nobody will notice. Given the fact that New Orleans politicans haven't helped there cause with past indiscressions (i.e. Willy Jefferson and his cold hard cash) it still seems a mystery to me how everyone can buy into it. I will be the first to say I'm apprehensive about giving the money to the Army Corp of Engineers who run their outfit like the New York Knicks. Spending money they don't have for a substandard job. There latest idea is to build a levee as high as the Great Wall of China to stop the levees from breaking. So I say, let's bring the Dutch over and fix the job. I mean they have the most intricate system of canals and levees they can definitely do the job much better than the bumbling carnies/engineers of the Corps.

While we are on the subject of giving out props, I must appluade Auburn University for giving out free grades to football players during their 2004 football campaign. Most other universities value the diploma, but at Auburn which is a great school they frown on that stuff when it comes to athletes. I'm not saying there is a double standard...o.k. I am saying that. Go Tigers! More power to you and less to the NCAA because they can't do a thing about it. It's about time that most people see the fact that football players at major universities take the fall semester off because they are too busy making money for their university.

Manny is Manny. I love that saying. I wish people would say that stuff about me when I do something stupid or just don't care. It's unaveritas being unaveritas. That's just him. Gotta love him and his 40 dingers and 100 rbi's. Here's to seeing Papelbon throw his arm out his socket this season trying to save every game for my Red Sox's pathetic bullpen. Here's too Julian Tavarez looking like Willie McGee with some Spanish fly in his drink. Here's too Matt Clement getting traded for a Fenway frank and a box of Munchkins from Dunkin Donuts.

Monday, July 10, 2006

The older you get, the more rules they are going to try and get you to follow.

So after reading this article about Matthew McConaughey late night diatribe in the Carribean it got me to wondering about my own late night debacles. We've all done it before. Gone on a vacation to have some fun only to come back with stories of lunancy induced by the strains of a cocktail or two. I distinctly recall a weekend in Boston that rivels the one Mr. McConaughey had over the 4th of July. We've all been that asshole.

Remember Swingers. Vince Vaughn's character. "My babies all growns up."

It seems that we all have a different look upon the guy who lives in Hollywood getting sloshed everynight at the Saturday Club over the guy who hangs out in Austin with Biff Lowman from high school at the Mother Eagans Pub and Grille.

To us McConaughey is one of the gang. The guy we grew up with that was a little out of control when you went out, but was always the life of the party. He would challenge you to a chugging contest, race you barefoot down the street, dare you to pick up a girl just so that she could get you free drinks on ladies night, or he would be the one buying the first round of drinks for the group. You just know it. He's cool like that. Not uptight about his status or his so called celebrity fame. He lives life like most of us, hanging out with friends, getting drunk on the weekends, celebrating the end of long steamy relationship. Most women would die to have an evening with this guy which makes it even more hilariously that even guys would love to hang out with him.

Living here in Austin I get to hear about Hollywood as an outsider through magazines, tabloids, Entertainment Tonight, and radio talk people with nothing else to do...How about play some music? We judge people by how they react in public situations like this, and to tell you the truth we've all been there and done that before. So I say to Matt, "L-I-V-I-N!" And if you are ever in the Southwest part of Austin, look me up. First round of Shiners are on me, my brother.

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

What's all the fuss about?

I was going to get into a diatribe about why the Red Sox should switch to the junior circuit,a.k.a. National League, but I felt more pressing issues needed to be attended to.

I got IM'd by my 80 year old father-in-law yesterday. Instead of complete shock there was a moment of doubt. Is this my nephews on his computer. After a quick response he returned to acknowledge it was him and that he was trying this thingy out on his computer. Needless to say he has dial up which prohibits him from IM'ing me at a sub-standard rate. It's so hard once you get a taste of the T1 lines or the satellite connection to go back to DSL much less dial up.

Somebody told me yesterday that the World Cup was still going on and I laughed and laughed. I can't believe this. As if the levees didn't get breached the city of New Orleans just flooded itself because someone let their bathtub overflow.

I watched Ben Harper on Austin City Limits and there is something strange about watching a concert that is right down the street from you. It's almost like watching the football game in the parking lot of the stadium. Had some really good beer the other day from the makers of Shinerbock. It's called Zietgenbock. It's almost like a Kolsh but darker. Went for some barbque yesterday at our favorite back porch bbq joint. It amazes me how a place that would have provided an excellent backdrop for Smokey and the Banditt 3 can be thriving with such business. Foods so good and they have a hand jacuzzi. I'm not lying. It's a mini-whirpool for your hands. It felt so good I thought about putting my feet in it. Not sanitary though.

When I was growing up we had mosquito patrols throughout our neighborhood. It was like a blitzkreg of pickup trucks driving in tandem spraying mosquito DDT into the air like a thick fog. I think it killed everything in the air and made almost everyone within breathing distant sterile for atleast a year. We need that stuff here in Austin. Damn mosquitos are so bothersome around here I almost decided to buy one of those beekeeper outfits just to go outside.

There is no end in sight for the summer movies. I keep seeing another movie being pushed each and every weekend. I almost laugh when I think about what the theaters charge for you to get in. It's almost not worth the sample I had to give last week just to go see a double matinee. Keep the prices down, don't go to the movies. Read a book or got to a ballgame.