Sunday, March 27, 2005
CC GETS GIFT
I hope this wasn't a CCHA officiating crew who did this game. Because I have marveled all year at how well officiated the CCHA games have been this year. It would be a shame if they had blown one that badly now. I must give credit to the Michigan fans, however. There was no throwing objects on the ice, no fights afterwards. If the Red Wings had been victimized like this........
Anyhow, the final four.... Colorado College, Minnesota, Denver, and North Dakota. The Fighting Sioux have a red hot goalie, so watch out for them!
Saturday, March 26, 2005
THE BOOB FACTOR
We went out St. Patrick's night to the local Celtic pub with her friend Cara, a Purdue sophomore 6 mos. older than Shelley. When we finally got to the head of the line waiting to get in, the bouncer stamped my hand, stamped Shelley's hand, then proceeded to card Cara and draw a large X on both of her hands. So while Shelley spent the rest of the night mingling with the Domers, hard cider firmly in hand, Cara was stuck with her free, designated driver diet Pepsi. And later in the evening, when a handsome young Notre Dame lad in a kilt bought her a drink, the bouncer promptly confiscated it while delivering a stern lecture. Shelley stood by, smiling sweetly, grasping her fourth Woodchuck.
My stepson has a theory about why she never gets carded. It's her boobs.
Daniel says that nobody ever really looks at her face. They see her obviously very grown up breasts and just assume the rest of her is too! Surprisingly, this works equally well with female or male servers!
I have come to the conclusion that Daniel is an astute young man. Last night, Shelley and her 19 yr. old friend and coworker Jill went to the local upscale Mexican cantina after work. Jill is also um, er, well.....stacked! The hostess immediately sat them in the bar, where they were served two liters of Margaritas, and, due to alcohol munchies, also consumed two baskets of tortilla chips w/picante sauce. The two maniacally giggling girls were retrieved by Jill's bemused mother, who wondered aloud how this could have happened. I told her the boob theory. She, too. has become a believer.
MICHIGAN DEFEATS WISCONSIN
Meanwhile, top ranked and #1 seed Boston College barely escaped against unranked and 16th seeded Mercyhurst 4-3, while North Dakota defeated Boston University 4-0.
One of the really fun things about watching college hockey is seeing the sons of former NHL players perform. Included in this category are Michigan's Jeff Tambellini (son of Steve) and Eric Nystrom (son of 4 time Stanley Cup winner Bob), along with Boston University freshman Chris Bourque (son of hall of famer Ray).
Friday, March 25, 2005
BEST QUOTE OF WEEK
Thursday, March 24, 2005
RANDOM THOUGHTS AND OBSERVATIONS
The front page of the USA TODAY business section Monday featured an article about the dismal condition of the NHL. The blame was placed exactly where it belongs..squarely at the feet of Commissioner Gary Bettman! Bettman is excoriated for his unworkable business plan, his failure to void the the three huge contracts that set off the tremendous wage inflation seen in the leagues last 8 years, and his failure to respond to the fans demand for a more exciting product, Bettman is quite frankly a millstone around the NHL's neck, and the quicker he is tossed overboard, the quicker we can get the NHL back on it's feet.
Had dinner with the kids and grandkids at that venerable South Bend institution, ROCCO'S. Former congressman John Hiler and his party were leaving as we were being seated. Shortly after our pizza arrived, former governor and first lady JOE and MAGGIE KERNAN walked in. Just a typical night at this third generation eatery on the edge of the student ghetto. No Regis sighting though! Damn!
One of the unseen costs of the war in Iraq is our inability to respond to crisis' elsewhere. Nowhere can this be seen more clearly than in the SUDAN. In a wave of ethnic cleansing, Arab militias and government troops have killed over 180,000 black Sudanese, and displaced more than a million more. And because more than half our operational units are pinned down in Iraq, we don't have the resources available to respond to the crisis. So add to the 200,000 plus Iraqi's and 1600 Americans 180,000 Sudanese dead. Numbers are starting to look Viet Nam like, aren't they!
Tomorrow night I will be traveling to Grand Rapids to see Michigan take on Wisconsin in the NCAA HOCKEY TOURNAMENT at beautiful, 12,000 seat Van Andel Arena. A Michigan victory may be cause for a return trip to the second city Saturday night!
Finally, one of the very few really good bands to come out of this area in the 30 years I have been here are starting to make a name for themselves nationally. Featured today on Public Radio International's syndicated program WORLD CAFE, Umphrey's McGee has developed a solid following nationwide due to their really solid musicianship and their aggressive self promotion on the internet! They are truly a fabulous group of musicians, so if they come to your area, seeing them is a MUST!!!!!!
Wednesday, March 23, 2005
HOW DID THIS HAPPEN?
First, there is the blood pressure issue. Second, there is a certain amount of despondency at watching the country in a downhill slide along a dirty road that leads to de facto fascism. But mostly, it has been a time issue.
Unlike Fuxnews, I actually like to know the details of a subject I am writing about. And that, my friends, takes a bit of research (hear that Bill O'Lielly and Britt Fume?)! And most of my research time recently has gone into preparing to launch my new canoeing blog (hopefully coming in a couple of weeks). However, I will, in the next couple of days, have something to say, both on the Shiavo case, and on the unseen human costs of the Iraq war.
Of course, Wolverine hockey, Tiger baseball, and the latest hot music downloads are likely to appear too!
Tuesday, March 22, 2005
ANY FIONA APPLE FANS? (have I got something for you!)
Monday, March 21, 2005
I would be able rock on that lying prick 24/7
2. SKYE KING'S niece Penny
3. the biography of THEODORE ROOSEVELT
4. AMERICA :THE BOOK, Jon Stewart et. al.
5. SALON magazine (www,salon.com), Why I AM A DEMOCRAT, Garrison Keillor
6. A TALE OF TWO CITIES by Charles Dickens, A FAREWELL TO ARMS by Earnest Hemmingway, LAST OF THE MOHICANS by James Fennimore Cooper, A HITCHHIKERS GUIDE TO THE GALAXY by Doug Adams, WHERE IS JOE MERCHANT? by Jimmy Buffet
7. MISTER ANCHOVY, cause he is this tremendously interesting, cosmopolitan man for all seasons, and I'm sure his answers will be interesting. SCHMOOTZIE, because I want to get the clown perspective, and KATY B, because she didn't call no tag backs! NO TAG BACKS!
See the questions at Bucky4eyes Cotillion
Sunday, March 20, 2005
SO WHO GOT SCREWED? WHO WAS GIVEN GIFT? PLUS, MY FROZEN FOUR PICKS!
#1 Boston College vs. #16 Mercyhurst
#7 North Dakota vs. #12 Boston University
#2 Denver vs. #15 Bemidji St.
#8 New Hampshire vs. #9 Harvard
#3 Colorado College vs. #14 Colgate
#6 Michigan vs. #11 Wisconsin
#4 Minnesota vs. #13 Maine
#5 Cornell vs. #10 Ohio State
FOR PRINTABLE BRACKET....CLICK HERE
How Cornell got screwed... Even though #3 ranked Cornell and #4 ranked Michigan each win their conference tournament, for some reason #5 Boston College jumps all the way to #1. Minnesota, which comes in 3rd in it's tourney, somehow jumps to #4.
Michigan is compensated by essentially being given home ice advantage, playing an hour down I-96 in Grand Rapids. Cornell gets doubly screwed by being robbed of the #1 seed, and then has to go all the way out west to Minneapolis for it's games!
My Final Four predictions. Denver vs. B.C., Cornell vs. Michigan. I consider Michigan/Cornell a toss up. I also believe this game will determine the championship. Take the winner of this game over Denver for the NCAA championship!
# 4 WOLVERINES DEFEAT OHIO STATE!
The six conference champions with automatic births to the FROZEN FINALS are:
BOSTON COLLEGE (Hockey East)
MERCYHURST (Atlantic Hockey Assoc.)
CORNELL (East Coast Athletic Conference)
MICHIGAN (Central Collegiate Hockey Assoc.)
BEMIDJI STATE (College Hockey Assoc.)
DENVER (Western Collegiate Hockey Assoc.)
Final regular season poll:
1. COLORADO COLLEGE
5. BOSTON COLLEGE
7, NEW HAMPSHIRE
9. BOSTON UNIVERSITY
10. OHIO STATE
13. NORTH DAKOTA
15. NORTHERN MICHIGAN
While tickets to the FROZEN FOUR have been sold out for 10 mos., there are still tickets available for a couple of the regional finals, including the Midwest Regional in Grand Rapids. Look for those to disappear quickly if Michigan gets seeded there!
Friday, March 18, 2005
PISS YOUR PANTS FUNNY
DEAR JANET JACKSON
I AGREE WITH PAT MATHENEY
Also, KATY B. will enjoy these (I think!)
From Brooklyn based band Morningwood:TAKE OFF YOUR CLOTHES
Mendoza Line:DAMN GOOD DISGUISE
Bloc Party: LIKE EATING GLASS
The National: ALL THE WINE
Incidentally, the Mendoza Line song "Damn Good Disguise" is the song currently getting the most play on my iTunes list. I LOVE THIS SONG!
BOB SEGER, CORMACK McCARTHY RELEASES COMING!
OTHER NEWS.... I recently exchanged emails with New England folk legend CORMACK McCARTHY. He tells me that a new album will be released in the fall. Also, he may be putting together his first midwest tour in a few years. If he does, likely venues would include THE ARK in Ann Arbor, the OLD TOWN SCHOOL OF MUSIC in Chicago, FRONT PORCH MUSIC in Valpo, and almost definitely LVD'S in Goshen IN. So keep an eye on these venues!
Thursday, March 17, 2005
HAPPY ST. PAT'S TO YA!
MAY YER BARMAID BE COMELY, YOUR VOICE STRONG AND CLEAR, AND YOUR PINT O' GUINESS BOTTOMLESS!
Wednesday, March 16, 2005
SERIOUS RANT COMING SOON
Then I saw a poll that confirms that Americans, as a whole, are the stupidest people on earth! According to this poll, 56% of Americans still believe that we found weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. What planet are these people living on? Must be planet FOX!
How is it that people aren't up in arms about the Haliburton scandal? Or the House Majority leader ethics scandal? As Bill Maher put it, "if this was Clinton and the Democrats, there would be mobs with pitchforks and torches marching on the White House!"
Tuesday, March 15, 2005
LOTS TO SAY, TOO TIRED TO SAY IT
Monday, March 14, 2005
As a part of my job, for the last twenty years,I have delivered the mail to the Shipshewana IN post office. And every Monday afternoon for the past twenty years, I have used the facilities there. So today,as always, I grabbed the first decent magazine off the recycling pile (Cosmo with Avril Lavigne on the cover). I went in, sat down, opened Cosmo, when suddenly I got this very disquieting feeling that something was amiss. I jumped up, pulled up the drawers, and dashed out of the room. I looked around, desperately hoping no one had noticed my bizarre behavior. All clear. Then I looked at the door. It said MEN. I went back in and looked around. Then it dawned on me. THE TREE WAS MISSING.
Every day of at least the last twenty years, a 7’ tall plastic tree has stood sentry in the corner of the men's room. Now the corner was empty. I cracked open the door and called out “Hey, we’ve been robbed!” A clerk and a rural route carrier came running over. When I told them our tree was gone, they looked at each other and said in unison “Helga!” It seems the Shipshe PO has a new cleaning service.
Neither the clerk or the carrier has actually met the cleaning person. And nobody as of yet knows her name. They refer to her as “Helga” for the Aryan efficiency she has brought to the place in her first week on the job. Everything is meticulously organized, and spotlessly clean. And she has robbed the place of all it’s character.
At first, I joked around about our missing tree. Then I realized, I WAS REALLY UPSET. I am suddenly guilty of that longing for things to remain unchanged. The ramifications are obvious. Am I about to become that old geezer that I have always rolled my eyes at. You know, the one who is always telling you how great things were when they were kids. always talking about FATHER KNOWS BEST, and OZZIE AND HARRIET, how families ate dinner together every night then settled down to watch UNCLE MILTIE on tv. Conveniently forgetting about backyard fallout shelters, us kids sitting in the school hallway with our heads tucked between our legs, practicing the life saving head tuck that would surely save us when the Ruskies dropped the big one. Conveniently forgetting about Jim Crow and lynchings and Joe McCarthy.
Am I about to start telling my grandkids about how much better things were when I was a kid. When drugs were cheap, sex was free, rock and roll reigned, and the Boone’s Farm and Ripple flowed like White Zinfandel? God, am I becoming that geezer I despise?
We were informed that another rural route carrier, Becky, had taken tree out of the dumpster and taken it home. As I was leaving, I noticed the RR carrier staring blankly into the once charmingly cluttered furnace room. “Sad isn’t it?” I asked. She looked up and said “oh, no, I was just thinking that I'm worried about Becky. What in the world would possess her to take home a tree that that was in the men's room for twenty years? You know one of you guys musta pee’d in it at one time or another!”
What in the world possesses Becky? Woah, there isn’t enough space on blogger to tackle THAT one!
Saturday, March 12, 2005
I'M NO PHOGEY
10. DIGBY (just consistently good pop)
9. SIXPENCE; NONE THE RICHER (yeah, I know they are officially disbanded, but they have one more album to be released.
And Leigh Nash makes me ache all over)
8. Natalie Imbruglia (sexy woman with sexy voice and smart lyrics)
7. FIVE FOR FIGHTING (nice, innovative pop, and hockey fans to boot)
6. THE LEGENDS (terrific Indie rock with great harmonies, great guitar work and distinct motown beat)
5. The MENDOZA LINE (great New York alternative/rock band)
4. WILCO (the heirs apparent to THE GRATEFUL DEAD and PHISH)
3. GOO GOO DOLLS
2. NO DOUBT (and Gwen is SOOOO hot)
and the band i am listening to most:
1. GREEN DAY (love about everything they have ever done)
Honorable mention: THE WHITE STRIPES (check out their great, campy, live version of Dolly Parton's JOLENE on the Blackpool Deluxe album
REALLY GOOD NEWS
GOOD NEWS/BAD NEWS
BAD NEWS- One of those games is Michigan vs. Notre Dame. Combined score of their four previous games this year: MICHIGAN 32, NOTRE DAME 4.
BAD NEWS - US TRADE DEFICIT hit 7% of GDP this month. Last two countries that happened to (Mexico, Thailand) had currency collapse shortly thereafter. Alan Greenspan says this is “unsustainable”.
BAD NEWS - US BUDGET DEFICIT also at all time high, putting further pressure on the dollar.
VERY BAD NEWS - OIL PRICES continue to soar as demand soars and dollar weakens. Gas here is up 20 cents over last week, expected to go up at least that much more.
MORE VERY BAD NEWS - Turns out our intelligence in IRAN is no better than our intelligence was in Iraq. In other words, NON EXISTENT! Truth is, we have no idea what is actually going on with Iran's “nucular” program. Perhaps this is why the evil emperor has suddenly done an about face and is cooperating with the Europeans in negotiating with Iran!
GOOD NEWS - DEMOCRACY BREAKING OUT IN MIDEAST! Lebanese force out pro Syrian president. Egypt announces democratic reforms including election for president. Elected officials in Iraq negotiating to put new, ethnically/factionally inclusive government in place.
BAD NEWS (OOPS) - WHAT A DIFFERENCE A WEEK MAKES! In Lebanon, pro Syrian president back in office, pro Syrian demonstrations twice the size of anti Syrian demonstrations! In Egypt, the opposition candidate for president has been jailed. In Iraq, the insurgency grows more powerful weekly, as daily death tolls
grow larger! Negotiations to form new government appear to be stalled!
GOOD NEWS - ST. PATRICK'S DAY PLANS are well underway, including a visit to FIDDLER'S HEARTH. Entertainment includes KENNEDY'S KITCHEN and WHISKEY BEFORE BREAKFAST!
Tuesday, March 08, 2005
AL MONTOYA (G)
ERIC NYSTROM (F), team captain and son of 4 time Stanley Cup winner Bob Nystrom. He is an excellent defensive player with
knack for scoring big goals!
JEFF TAMBELINNI (F), another exciting offensive player, great passer, another guy who scores when they count!
ERIC WERNER (D), at 5'10" 170, he is undersized, but tenacious, quick and tough. Not afraid to mix it with the big boys!
Coming off his best 2 weekends of the season. He is in playoff mode.
I have been to a number of college games this year, and I gotta tell ya, I have enjoyed them as much as any NHL game. The fans at college games are absolutely the best!
AS PROMISED....DANIEL SHORR
On his 60-day, 60-stop Social Security blitz, President Bush tends to emphasize solvency, but in more restricted circles of supporters, the emphasis is on ideology. A January limited-circulation memo by Peter Wehner, director of the White House Office of Strategic Initiatives, said that the overhaul of Social Security will be `one of the most conservative undertakings of modern times and, if successful, will rank as one of the most significant conservative governing achievements ever.'
In public, the administration has shied away from the question of benefit reductions, but Wehner wrote, `We're going to take a very close look at changing the way benefits are calculated.' As to conservatives who press for investment accounts without touching benefits, Wehner calls that a `bad idea.'
In case anyone doubts the ideological underpinning of the campaign for Social Security overhaul, Wehner writes that, `We consider our Social Security reform not simply an economic challenge, but a moral goal and a moral good.' And he predicted that the debate over Social Security is going to be `a monumental clash of ideas that will help the nation to move away from dependency on government.'
What is the origin of the president's preoccupation with turning back the clock on a program going back to FDR? In 1997, Mr. Bush had dinner at the Governor's Mansion in Austin with Ed Crane, president of the libertarian Cato Institute, and Jose Pinera, who, as labor minister in the Pinochet government in Chile, had taken that country's pension scheme private. According to Crane, who confirmed to me a report in Mother Jones magazine, then-Governor Bush said, `Jose, you make a very compelling case. I do believe that privatizing Social Security is the most important domestic issue facing the nation.'
If Republican and Democrat are having trouble finding common ground for negotiation, it is in part because how do you compromise with a crusade? This is Daniel Schorr.
Monday, March 07, 2005
I will be posting the transcript of this commentary as soon as it becomes available!
Sunday, March 06, 2005
GAWD...THESE ARE SOOOOO FREAKIN FUNNY
THE DAILY SHOW OR if that doesn't work:
LEFT FIELD and scroll down and click on pics of JON STEWART AND BILL MAHER
I PROMISE you won't be sorry!
p.s. Anybody who buys into the Robin Williams has lost it theory has GOT to check out the Bill Maher clip!
SECRECY, TORTURE, PROPAGANDA MARK NEW AMERICAN POLITBURO PRACTICES
We may never know the truth about how many people -- U.S. citizens and others -- have been detained, imprisoned and tortured under the guise of protecting us from terrorists. The Justice Department has never revealed how many people were rounded up and held after the 9/11 attacks. Most were imprisoned and denied contact with their families. Many still are not given access to lawyers. Some are locked in hellholes in the United States and Guantanamo, Cuba, and some have been whisked away to foreign locations where torture is commonplace.
The case of Maher Arar, a Canadian engineer, provides a revealing and frightening glimpse of the Bush administration's devotion to the kind of tactics Stalin's top enforcer, Lavrenti Beria, found effective. In the Feb. 14, 2005 issue of the "New Yorker" magazine, Jane Mayer wrote an excellent and chilling account of Arar's ordeal, showing how our government makes up its own rules, disregards international law and outsources torture.
Arar, a 34-year-old McGill University graduate, emigrated from Syria with his family when he was a teen-ager. On September 26, 2002, Arar arrived at JFK Airport in New York, returning from a vacation with his family in Tunisia. He planned to make a connection there for the last leg of his flight home to Canada. Instead, federal agents pounced on and detained him because his name appeared on a U.S. watch list of suspected terrorists. He was held for the next 13 days and questioned about another suspect. Arar hardly knew the man, but he told his interrogators he had once worked with the man's brother.
In a flash, Arar, who was never charged, was placed in handcuffs and leg irons and was whisked away in an executive jet to Amman, Jordan. There, he was subjected to months of brutal interrogation and torture. Arar said he was repeatedly beaten with thick electrical cables and stuffed into a windowless cell that he said reminded him of a grave.
Arar related that horrible experience to Mayer, and -- using the Arabic idiom -- described the pain as so unbearable that "you forget the milk that you have been fed from the breast of your mother."
Mayer reminds us that, on Jan. 27, Bush assured the world in a New York Times interview that "torture is never acceptable, nor do we hand over people to countries that do torture." In fact, that's exactly what we do. Under a secretive dirty program called "extraordinary rendition," federal operatives, called the Special Removal Unit, have transported uncharged individuals to countries where torture is used, especially in the Middle East, to squeeze anything out of them. The truth of what they say matters little. Arar says that eventually he confessed to anything his tormentors wanted to hear.
"You give up. You become an animal," he told the "New Yorker."
Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, while White House Counsel, wrote memos outlining the crypto-legal basis for using "extraordinary rendition" any time the commander in chief wants to, without explanation or any judicial review. These are the same powers Stalin enjoyed.
A year later, after the intervention of the Canadian government, Arar was released without ever being charged. The Bush regime has never apologized to Arar or Canada for what happened. Arar is suing the U.S. government for his suffering. Justice Department lawyers are evoking the rarely used "states secrets privilege" in a motion to get the suit dismissed.
There is no accounting for people removed through "extraordinary rendition." Some of them, no doubt, faced an end Stalin preferred. "Death solves all problems -- no man, no problem," the Soviet leader once said.....
BILL GALLAGHER COVERS DETROIT FOR WJBK CHANNEL 2 (FOX). HE IS A FORMER NIAGARA FALLS CITY COUNCILMAN AND WRITES A WEEKLY COLUMN FOR THE NIAGARA FALLS REPORTER.
Saturday, March 05, 2005
WE'RE # 49?
as found on BLONDESENSE
The United States is 49th in the world in literacy (the New York Times, Dec. 12, 2004).
The United States ranked 28th out of 40 countries in mathematical literacy (NYT, Dec. 12, 2004).
Twenty percent of Americans think the sun orbits the earth. Seventeen percent believe the earth revolves around the sun once a day (The Week, Jan. 7, 2005).
"The International Adult Literacy Survey...found that Americans with less than nine years of education 'score worse than virtually all of the other countries'" (Jeremy Rifkin's superbly documented book The European Dream: How Europe's Vision of the Future Is Quietly Eclipsing the American Dream, p.78).
Our workers are so ignorant and lack so many basic skills that American businesses spend $30 billion a year on remedial training (NYT, Dec. 12, 2004). No wonder they relocate elsewhere!
"The European Union leads the U.S. in...the number of science and engineering graduates; public research and development (R&D) expenditures; and new capital raised" (The European Dream, p.70).
"Europe surpassed the United States in the mid-1990s as the largest producer of scientific literature" (The European Dream, p.70).
Nevertheless, Congress cut funds to the National Science Foundation. The agency will issue 1,000 fewer research grants this year (NYT, Dec. 21, 2004).
Foreign applications to U.S. grad schools declined 28 percent last year. Foreign student enrollment on all levels fell for the first time in three decades, but increased greatly in Europe and China. Last year Chinese grad-school graduates in the U.S. dropped 56 percent, Indians 51 percent, South Koreans 28 percent (NYT, Dec. 21, 2004). We're not the place to be anymore.
The World Health Organization "ranked the countries of the world in terms of overall health performance, and the U.S. [was]...37th." In the fairness of health care, we're 54th. "The irony is that the United States spends more per capita for health care than any other nation in the world" (The European Dream, pp.79-80). Pay more, get lots, lots less.
"The U.S. and South Africa are the only two developed countries in the world that do not provide health care for all their citizens" (The European Dream, p.80). Excuse me, but since when is South Africa a "developed" country? Anyway, that's the company we're keeping.
Lack of health insurance coverage causes 18,000 unnecessary American deaths a year. (That's six times the number of people killed on 9/11.) (NYT, Jan. 12, 2005.)
"U.S. childhood poverty now ranks 22nd, or second to last, among the developed nations. Only Mexico scores lower" (The European Dream, p.81). Been to Mexico lately? Does it look "developed" to you? Yet it's the only "developed" country to score lower in childhood poverty.
Twelve million American families--more than 10 percent of all U.S. households--"continue to struggle, and not always successfully, to feed themselves." Families that "had members who actually went hungry at some point last year" numbered 3.9 million (NYT, Nov. 22, 2004).
Friday, March 04, 2005
IGNORANCE IN AMERICA Is there any other country in the developed world that actually celebrates and rewards ignorance like America does? That punishes people for acquiring knowledge? That rather than honor those who have worked hard and succeeded in academia, refer to them as eggheads, educated idiots, culture nazi's, etc. Is it any wonder so many of our children don't take schooling seriously? How can we demand that people continue their education, then ridicule them when they do? Aren't you sick of being looked down upon by ignorant people? Just curious!
Headed to Ann Arbor Saturday for Michigan vs. Bowling Green hockey. Since I probably won't have time to blog tomorrow, I leave you with this list of my most recent free downloads. There is a tremendous amount of great music available for free (legally) on the net. Including a lot of well known artists. I especially like Mendoza Line's DAMN GOOD DISGUISE, The Robot Ate Me's GENOCIDE BALL, and Rig The Jig's THE LIFTIN' OF THE LATCH!
Ani DiFranco STUDYING STONES,
The Arcade Fire NEIGHBORHOOD #3,
Chumbawumba JACOB’S LADDER
Digby ONE HUNDRED PERCENT FREE
The Donnas DO YOU WANNA HIT IT
Eliott Smith MEMORY LANE
Fancy ROCK AND ROLL RYTHEM
Hayden HOME BY SATURDAY
Jim White STATIC ON THE RADIO
Kelly Stoltz UNDERWATER’S WHERE THE ACTION IS
Legends MAKE IT ALL RIGHT
Legends THERE AND BACK AGAIN
The M’s 2x2
Mendoza Line A DAMN GOOD DISGUISE
Nick Drake NORTHERN SKY
Postal Service SUCH GREAT HEGHTS
Rickie Lee Jones UGLY MAN
Rig The Jig THE LIFTIN OF THE LATCH
The Robot Ate Me GENOCIDE BALL
Rosco Gordon YOU LOOK BAD WHEN YOU’RE NAKED
Tom Waits HOW’S IT GONNA END
White Stripes JOLENE
Wilco 18 SPIDERS
I grew up in a working class subdivision just outside of Pontiac, MI. There were seven lakes within 2 miles of my house, and every subdivision had it's own beach. In the winter, there was always plenty of opportunity to skate. What's more. there was a vacant lot next door to our house, and it sat about 6 inches lower than our house and our nearest neighbor to the south. The ground was mostly clay, and at the start of the winter, you could easily flood it and the water would stay and freeze.
Like I said, it was a working class neighborhood. Our fathers were short on cash but long on ingenuity. One of the neighbors rigged up a home made zamboni machine. This consisted of a 50 gallon drum strapped to a hand truck. At the bottom of the barrel was spigot attached to a long piece of copper tubing with holes drilled in it. When you opened the spigot, it would soak a heavy sheet of roofing felt that was tied to the contraption. As you pulled the hand truck along, the wet felt would lay down a thin layer of water which would freeze very quickly. My dad got the bright idea for curling stones. He cut the tops off six Clorox bottles, filled them with sackrete, and stuck doubled up coat hangers in for handles. He spray painted three of the bottles red, and voile! Curling stones.
We knew the basic idea of the sport from watching CROSS CANADA CURLING on channel 9 in Windsor. And we quickly learned a few tricks. Like Turtle Wax on the bottom of a Clorox bottle makes it slide much better. By the time my sister and her friends were of age, WD-40 had been invented and they REALLY SLID WELL with a quick spray!
So there we'd be, out on the ice after school. We'd steal our mothers brooms and beat the hell out of the ice with them. Still not sure if we were actually doing any good sweeping, but we expended a hell of a lot of energy trying. I can still hear one of the neighbor ladies screaming from four blocks away, "TONY POULAS, YOU BRING MY BROOM BACK HERE....NOW! Tony also had the most distinctive shooting style. He would stand way back, get a running start, do a belly flopper, then push the stone towards its target. It was hilarious to watch. He looked ridiculous. He was also the best shooter in the neighborhood.
When my dad's health began to fail, they moved from the subdivision to a townhouse. In the process of moving them, I found the long unused curling bottles in the garage and threw them out. God, I wish now I had kept them!
Thursday, March 03, 2005
SOMEBODY PLEASE EXPLAIN THIS TO ME
This would not only fund social security permanently, we could even afford to raise benefits. AND STILL SAVE 700 BILLION DOLLARS!
Am I missing something here?
Wednesday, March 02, 2005
ANOTHER HOOSIER EMBARRASSMENT
The black clerk, Trina, sighed and related this story; in the early sixties Marian Anderson was scheduled to appear at Goshen College. The locals, incensed that the "nigger rabble-rouser" was to appear in their town, tried to have her banned from entering the county. There were a lot of tense moments, a riot threatened, but in the end, the college prevailed and the appearance went off as scheduled. Forty years later, and many of the locals still hold the grudge.
Trina has worked at the Goshen PO for over twenty years. She still has customers who make her put their change on the counter so she won't touch them. Still has customers who will wait for another clerk to come available rather than have her wait on them. Recently, she grabbed one woman's hand, placed her change in it, and said "see, it doesn't rub off!"
Trina is a kind, sweet, extremely nice human being. A devout evangelical Christian, she should fit in Mennonite dominated Elkhart county like a hand in a driving glove. That she doesn't says volumes about Hoosiers.
CONDI SNUBS CANADA
Maybe my Canadian friends will inform me differently, but I have to believe they are looking at this with a sense of bemused relief. After all, isn't this kinda like having your boorish neighbor announce he isn't coming to your 4th of July party. You know the neighbor I'm talking about. The self important, demanding, arrogant know it all who is always telling you how you should do things even though he can't manage his own house.
Well, Canada, we're not coming to your Victoria Day celebration this year because you didn't appreciate our fireworks last year! And aren't you grateful?
Tuesday, March 01, 2005
THE SPACEMAN COMETH
When asked if he ever cheated, he replied "oh yeah, every chance I got. I'd use anything if it would help make a pitch drop."
So it doesn't bother you if someone uses a corked bat or something like that? "No, I loved it. It meant that guy thought he had lost something, was getting jammed. Pitchers have an amazing network. If some guy starts using a lighter bat or changes his stance in batting practice, every pitcher in the league knows it. Trust me, it's on the web!"
On living in Vermont: "Vermont saved my life, literally. We call my house in Vermont the half way house. Because it's half way between a bar in Boston and a bar in Montreal. I'm a gregarious drinker, and since we don't have many parties in Vermont, I'm sober most of the time."
On mandatory drug testing: "I tested every drug known to man in the eighties, and I came to the conclusion that they definitely shouldn't be mandatory!"
More on the Spaceman, or listen to the interview here!
RUN FOR YOUR LIVES, DUBYA'S COMIN'........
HEY, MR. DUMBASS W. BUSHLEAGUE...WHY DON'T YOU BALANCE THE FUCKING BUDGET AND START TO PAY BACK SOME OF THE 1.5 TRILLION DOLLARS THE GOVERNMENT OWES THE SOCIAL SECURITY TRUST FUND? YOU DO THAT, NOT ONLY WOULD SOCIAL SECURITY BE SOLVENT TO INFINITY AND BEYOND, BUT YOU COULD EVEN AFFORD TO RAISE MY BENEFITS! MAYBE EVEN PAY FOR UNIVERSAL HEALTH CARE!
But, that would be the responsible, conservative thing to do. No chance you'd consider THAT!
THE ROCK HEARD AROUND THE WORLD
It is being called the greatest final rock in the history of the sport. Jennifer Jones' spectacular final throw propelled Manitoba to a victory over Ontario and into the women's World Championships in Scotland. See a replay of the "rock heard 'round the world" here!