03.31.10 – A Wednesday

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word

greenhorn [green-hawrn] n. 1. an untrained or inexperienced person 2. a naive or gullible person; someone who is easily tricked or swindled 3. Slang. a newly arrived immigrant; newcomer

birthday

René Descartes (1596), Joseph Haydn (1732), John Fowles (1926), César Chávez (1927), William Daniels (1927), Lefty Frizzell (1928), Gordie Howe (1928), Liz Claiborne (1929), Richard Chamberlain (1934), Shirley Jones (1934), Herb Alpert (1935), Barney Frank (1940), Patrick Leahy (1940), Michael Savage (1942), Christopher Walken (1943), Gabe Kaplan (1945), Al Gore (1948), Rhea Perlman (1948), Ed Marinaro (1950), Angus Young (1955), Marc McClure (1957), Ewan McGregor (1971), Josh Saviano (1976)

standpoint

My new laptop actually works with this old iPod I inherited so, after I got home from bartending last night later than usual, I started ripping old CDs and, hence, there is no new Standpoint today. Tomorrow, there will be definitely be one and a most unpopular one with some among you.

quotation

Sometimes when you look back on a situation, you realize it wasn’t all you thought it was. A beautiful girl walked into your life. You fell in love. Or did you? Maybe it was just a childish infatuation, or maybe just a brief moment of vanity. Henry Bromell

tune

There’s a variety of songs out there with such an outstanding opening line, I don’t particularly care what happens throughout their duration. One such line is, “For once I want to be the car crash,” from “Headlights on Dark Roads” by Snow Patrol. In this instance, the entirety is solid as well.

gallimaufry

→ I try to steer clear of language so strong as this, but HOLY FUCK. The GOP leadership must be contemplating an assassination plot of this batshit crazy lady. To be fair, the video clip is at least four times as funny as anything she did on SNL.

→ For the record, if you don’t find Craig Ferguson funny, we’ll most likely never see eye-to-eye on anything at all. (This doesn’t mean I’m backing down from liking Jimmy Fallon, I just thrive on variety.)

→ It didn’t come as any surprise to me the Philadelphia Phillies made this decision. But I’ve been hearing gripes about it which is surprising since I was under the belief this city always rooted for the underdog. What other explanation could there be for all those damn Rocky movies?

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12.14.09 – A Monday

Last Friday night, my Uncle Joe died unexpectedly. He was probably the most affable and good-natured guy you’d have the good fortune to come across. Of my five brothers and sisters, I was probably the least close to Joe, and I’m pretty sure I was the only one who’d never gone to visit him at his home in Maryland. And I’m equally sure I’ll regret that for the rest of my life. Just kind of figured he’d be around to hang out with. Life is ruthlessly unpredictable, folks. Get out there and grab what you can from it. 

This post is dedicated to Uncle Joe. 

WORD

nonpareil [non-puhrel] adj. 1. having no equal; peerless n. 2. a person or thing having no equal 3. a small pellet of colored sugar for decorating candy, cake, and cookies 4. a flat, round, bite-sized piece of chocolate covered with this sugar

BIRTHDAY

Nostradamus (1503), Spike Jones (1911), Lee Remick (1935), Patty Duke (1946), Michael Ovitz (1946), Beth Orton (1970)

STANDPOINT

Last week I commented on Allen Iverson’s return to the Philadelphia 76ers.

For the record, I like Allen Iverson. I always have. Even when, in 2002, he threw his naked wife out of their house in Gladwyne, where I grew up. Lots and lots of things happened as a result of A.I.’s actions, including causing me to be over two hours late for some family function due to the fact every TV news van in the country was trying to get into probably the least traffic-friendly town you can imagine.  

In any case, the return of Allen Iverson has left me with mixed emotions. I’m glad he’s back, but as I stated last week, I’m curious as to why everyone else is.

Philadelphia has a history of taking young, talented athletes and making them regret they ever played their respective sport. The Philadelphia PhilliesMike Schmidt was deemed the best third baseman in history. Eric Lindros had a career for the Philadelphia Flyers that placed him, for much of it, in the same company as Gordie Howe, Mario Lemieux and Wayne Gretzky. On any other team in the NFL, Philadelphia Eagles‘ quarterback Donovan McNabb would be credited for being one of the best at his position in the past decade. Allen Iverson, in his first stint with the 76ers, was a diminutive individual, usually scoring more than double the points of the giants he played against.

And where did it get them? Schmidt retired as a Phillie but left here so damaged it took him almost a decade to return to the fans who booed much harder when he didn’t get the job done as they cheered when he did. Lindros’ story is much more complicated but, even with all the drama and concussions, he’s still a fringe candidate for the debate of who’s the best player in NHL history, even Bobby Clarke thinks so. McNabb still manages to come to work every Sunday and play for a bunch of worthless fans who’ve forgotten the likes of Bobby Hoying, Bubby Brister and Rodney Peete. And Iverson was one of the best in the NBA, while playing for a team that seemed content to let him try to win a championship all by himself.

Which begs the question, why would anyone come play in Philadelphia, a city where even those days when probably capable of better, and those days when you don’t live up to expectations there’s a million people leading the charge for your head? Don’t believe me? This past Phillies-Yankees World Series, I forget which game it was. I was at a bar and Phillies’ slugger Ryan Howard was striking out. A lot. And one of the morons sitting around me said, “Man, would you look at this fuckin’ bum on the goddamn television?” Yeah, genius, I was looking at the TV. At Ryan Howard. A guy who’s managed to hit 220 homers and knock in 635 runs in just five seasons. But Howard, and the rest of the Phillies, didn’t win this past World Series like they did the year before. And so, for that, Howard’s a bum. Just like every other professional athlete in Philadelphia sports’ history who didn’t give their fans the misplaced, instant gratification for which they feel erroneously entitled.

QUOTATION

 This and nothing else is the desperately sought and tragically fragile writer’s process: in his imagination, he sees made-up people doing things–sees clearly–and in the act of wondering what they will do next, he sees what they will do next, and all this he writes down in the best, most accurate words he can find, understanding even as he writes that he may have to find better words later, and that a change in the words may mean a sharpening or deepening of the vision, the fictive dream or vision becoming more and more lucid, until reality, by comparison, seems cold, tedious, and dead.John Gardner

TUNE

I normally have something poignant to say about the song I’m sharing with you. But today I don’t. Listen to “HEERS” by Someone Still Loves You Boris Yeltsin. It’s good. And that’s that.

GALLIMAUFRY

→ Listen up, country! The people of Houston get it. So why can’t the rest of you clowns fall in line? Annise Parker will become the city’s first openly gay mayor, making Houston the biggest city ever to do so. Is it safe to say it’s pretty fucked up when Texans are breaking new ground?

Tiger Woods, most likely after reading my post last Friday, has announced, “After much soul searching, I have decided to take an indefinite break from professional golf.” In what many are considering the understatement of a lifetime, Woods furthered with, “I need to focus my attention on being a better husband, father, and person.” You think?

→ OK. Let me get this straight. Donte Stallworth drunkenly drives over, and kills, a guy a few months back and gets 30 fucking days in jail. Meanwhile, New Jersey resident John Wilson is facing up to 20 years for growing 17 marijuana plants for his own personal use to treat his multiple sclerosis. I don’t drink and drive because I’m hesitant to put my life and the lives of others in jeopardy. I do, however, occassionally smoke pot in the privacy of my own home which, until now, seemed relatively innocuous. I guess I had it all backwards and turned upside-down. How naive of me.

03.31.09 – Tuesday

Whereabouts: Philadelphia, PA

Word: subterfuge [suhb-ter-fyooj] n. an artifice or expedient used to evade a rule, escape a consequence, hide something, etc.

Birthday: René Descartes (1596), Johann Sebastian Bach (1685), Joseph Haydn (1732), César Chávez (1927), William Daniels(1927), Gordie Howe (1928), Liz Claiborne (1929), Richard Chamberlain (1934), Shirley Jones (1934), Barney Frank (1940), Christopher Walken (1943), Gabe Kaplan (1945), Al Gore (1948), Rhea Perlman (1948), Ed Marinaro (1950), Angus Young (1955), Ewan McGregor (1971), Josh Saviano (1976)

Occurrence: 1918Daylight Saving Time is first used. I’ve heard all the reasons why DST is a good idea. None of them appeal to me. It’s just a hassle. Except when I’m at a bar when we’re turning the clocks back. Then, I mean hey, one more hour of drinking. When is that ever a bad thing?

Standpoint: I like police officers. I know lots of people who don’t. Most have had a bad experience with a cop. Some just like thumbing their nose at authority. (Rock on, rebel.) But being a police officer can’t be easy. I can understand why they might sometimes be rude. First, people generally lie to them. Hardly anyone tells the exact truth. At least not right off the bat. Cops always have to ask a million questions to get to the bottom of anything. That’s gotta be frustrating. Second, imagine if – every conversation that you had in a day – you had to worry about someone either lunging at you or sprinting away and diving over some fence. I’d find it hard to remain forever-courteous in that situation. So I get it. I appreciate everything that law enforcement does for our society. But what Dallas Police Officer Robert Powell did to Ryan and Tamisha Moats was borderline criminal. Guy definitely shouldn’t be a cop. Or even a junkyard security guard. Moats, however, handled the situation like a gentleman and continues to do so. The saddest part about the whole incident is that, if Moats wasn’t an NFL running back, we would’ve never even known it occurred.

Quotation: A careful driver is one who honks his horn when he goes through a red light.Henry Morgan

Soupçon: The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms prohibits the use of the word “refreshing” in describing any alcoholic beverage. I thought old Zima ads might’ve used the word but I can’t find any official use of the word “refreshing.”

Tune: Carly Simon’s “You’re So Vain” has always confused me. If she’s singing, “You’re so vain/You probably think this song is about you,” then wouldn’t the song at least be partially “about” whoever the hell she thinks is “so vain?” I think so. Furthermore, Simon has never confirmed who she’s referring to. Popular speculation names several suspects: Mick Jagger, Cat Stevens, Warren Beatty, Kris Kristofferson and James Taylor. Apparently, back then, if you played the guitar or happened to be Warren Beatty, you had a pretty good shot of dating Ms. Simon.

Link: Calvin and Hobbes Wonderland – Everything you could possibly need about the awesome comic strip by Bill Watterson.

Gallimaufry: It’s no secret that I like President Obama. But funny is funny. Check out Barack Obama’s Teleprompter’s Blog…Ever wished for super powers? Sure you have. Let Cracked explain why you don’t want them…Using TweetDeck for Twitter is my new vice. I highly recommend it.