Ups and Downs of the Week

Red Sox – Finally playing like the team we were, (ahem) promised. Aside from missing starting pitchers, they’re firing on all cylinders now. Still can’t seem to gain much ground on the Yankees, though.

Nightmare in Norway – There are nutcases everywhere. This one is a particularly sick animal, though. Wonder which rock he crawled out from under.

Debt Ceiling – Just work out a deal and be done with it. Stop playing chicken with the economy. It’s in bad enough shape as it is.

Ups and Downs of the Week

Red Sox – Still on top in the ALE, but they must address the holes in their pitching rotation. Only Josh Beckett is healthy and performing well. Hopefully Buchholz and Lester will return to health and be back very soon. Lackey is still undependable and they have no dependable #5 pitcher. Wakefield can occasionally pitch a gem, but he’ll lose just as often. And tonight’s drubbing at the hands of the Rays showed that Miller is not the answer going forward. Luckily, the Yankmees also lost tonight, so no ground was lost in the ALE standings.

Prosecutorial Incompetence – A couple of high profile cases this week have shown that prosecutorial incompetence is sadly all too common. The Roger Clemens perjury prosecution ended in a mistrial almost as soon as it started because the bozos representing the government showed a videotape that had been expressly forbidden as evidence by the judge. All that taxpayer money wasted because highly paid lawyers had a brain cramp. The whole affair has been ludicrous anyway. Congress had no business “investigating” steroid use in baseball. Clemens had no business voluntarily testifying and like a dumbass he lied to Congress through his teeth. Now lying to a bunch of liars may seem like no big deal, but if Joe Schmo down the street would face charges for doing so, then Roger should as well. But chances are good there will be no retrial and Clemens will face no punishment beyond the fortune he must have spent for his lawyers.

Then there’s the prosecutors in the Casey Anthony trial, who botched the case from step one by going for a capital murder charge when they had no case to support such a charge. Had they gone for second degree murder or negligent homicide, Anthony would be starting a long prison term instead of getting ready to walk out a free person.

Nutcases – While I’m on the subject, there have been threats and incidents in FL over the verdict in the aforementioned Anthony trial. Some nutcases have been threatening to kill Anthony and some poor girl who happens to look like her has already been assaulted. You have to be pretty sick to want to kill someone because you think they killed someone else. Where does that cycle end?

Technology – Sarah conducted a webinar yesterday for a bunch of librarians in Massachusetts without ever leaving the comfort of home. We set up Skype on both ends and she was able to converse with them and show them her presentation. It all worked perfectly.

Rupert Murdoch – In Tomorrow Never Dies the actor Jonathan Pryce played a maniacal news mogul who controlled so much of the news media that he was able to shape worldwide events. His character may have been intended as an exaggerated personification of Rupert Murdoch, but recent events in Great Britain have shown it may have painfully close to the truth. Murdoch’s News Corp has been accused of illegally hacking in to cell phones of too many people to list, ranging from the families of 9-11 victims to a murdered British schoolgirl to victims of London’s 2005 bombings. This is a pure example of why the monopolization of the media is such a bad thing. When one person or firm gains control of too much of the available media outlets, the news and information that flows out to the viewer becomes whatever the person in charge decides it should be. I would like nothing better than to see this scandal break up the News Corp empire.

Heat Wave – We’re in for a real blistering heat wave starting tomorrow afternoon. Temps in the middle to upper 90’s and humidity well into the tropical range will be with us for the following week. Oh boy.

Ups and Downs of the Week

Bruins – They tied the series in convincing fashion at the Garden, but then went back into no-offense mode in Vancouver tonight. They scored at will in the Garden and can’t score at all in Vancouver. Tim Thomas has been spectacular in goal, but if the Bruins score nothing, even one goal is enough for the other team to win. And that’s been the story in Vancouver.

Seal Shootings on Cape Cod – Hope they catch the sicko who is doing this.

Red Sox – They swept the Yankmees in their own house again. They’ve won 7 in a row and own the second best record in baseball.


Ups and Downs of the Week

New Lens – I picked up a used Canon 85mm f1.8 lens at B&H Photo in NYC last week. I’ve wanted one of these for a while. They make excellent portrait lenses and are pretty good for mid-range shots as well. Some examples below.

Central Park Jazz band

Central Park Newage Latino band


Peekaboo Cat

Political Games – Our esteemed state legislature voted overwhelmingly to extend our current health care contracts and dispense with the wildly unpopular plan that was just adopted by the state with very little oversight or thought of consequences. The legislature had a veto-proof majority, but in a not-so-subtle move, they passed the bill and sent it to the governor’s desk, where it is sure to be vetoed, on the last day of the current session. So now when the governor vetoes it, they can claim they tried to do something about and wash their hands of the whole affair. Any group with an ounce of integrity and a gram of courage would have pushed this bill through weeks ago while there was still time to override the inevitable veto. Do they really think we’re all so stupid?

Right place, right time – I was driving home today and was just passing a large corn field as a crop duster started to spray it. I just happened to have my camera gear with me.

Crop Duster

Crop Duster

Crop Duster

Crop Duster

Crop Duster

Crop Duster

Crop Duster

Crop Duster

Red Sox – They beat Oakland tonight, barely, but they got swept by the Pale Hose earlier this week and are reverting back to their early season sub-par play.

Ok, so I’m a little late this week. We’ve been in NYC and I didn’t get around to posting Friday or Saturday. So here goes…

Red Sox – Finally playing up to expectations. They’re at the top of the AL East and if they keep playing this way, they’ll be well out in front by the All Star break.

CNN – Used to be the premier news organization in the world. Now they peddle celebrity gossip and misery voyeurism. Sad that they’ve lowered themselves so, all the more so because it seems that’s all people want these days.

Bruins – Heading to the Stanley Cup finals for the first time in decades.

NYC – As I say every year, it’s a great place to visit for a few days. But after those few days, I usually can’t wait to get back home. I took loads of pics which I’ll post up soon.

Park Central Hotel – Between the faulty air conditioning and half the elevators being out of service, it was not the best stay we’ve had in NYC. The location was great, but the hotel itself is poorly run.

Ups and Downs of the Week

Red Sox – Can’t figure them out. Just when you think they’re turning it around, they lose three straight. Then they beat the Yankmees in their own house. At least Gonzalez is coming around and living up to the promise. Now if only Crawford would play to potential.

Judicial Watch – What a pathetic bunch of self-serving jackasses.

Bruins – They could do it this year.

Celtics – Even though they’re out of it, they put up a hell of a fight. Go Bulls!!

Mississippi Floods – You can’t fool Mother Nature. These floods will only get worse as they continue to try to control flooding with levees alone. There *must* be sufficient floodplain area where the water can collect while pressure on the river subsides. As long as they keep using flood plains as farms and places to build towns and cities, there will continue to be tragedies such as the one about to happen in Louisiana.

Ups and Downs of the Week

Red Sox – Playing better lately. Especially the starting pitching. They still leave way too many runners on base, though. Games that should be blowouts turn into close games.

Donald Trump – Does this jackass actually have a purpose in life? You’re fired, meathead.

Bruins – Came back from 2 games down to tie the series.

John McCain/Libya – No we do not need to get more involved in the Libyan civil war.

Ups and Downs of the Week

Japan Earthquake/Tsunami – The news keeps getting worse. Possibly more than 10,000 deaths, a nuclear disaster in the making, whole cities destroyed. One city had just a few concrete buildings left standing and one of them, a three story building, had cars and debris on the roof. The tsunami must have been incredible to cause that.

DirecTV – So far, so good. Much better reception and image than with Mediacom cable. Can’t wait for baseball season to start.

Libyan No-Fly Zone – The last thing the US needs is any level of involvement in yet another Middle Eastern conflict. What are they thinking?

Springtime weather – Into the 70’s by Monday. The Z4 is coming out of storage this weekend. Can’t wait.

Ups and Downs of the Week

Japan Earthquake/Tsunami – What a horror show. The images and videos are unreal. Such devastation. And yet a surprisingly low fatality count (so far). That shows how well the Japanese were prepared and how well they build their buildings. This was the strongest earthquake ever recorded in Japan, which is saying a lot. And yet their cities are still standing. Amazing. They have a huge cleanup ahead of them and there is still a concern about the nuclear power plants, but it appears their preparation and building codes saved countless lives.

Illinois Politics – The governor abolishes the death penalty, which is a good thing, and then signs the Amazon tax bill, which is sheer stupidity and arrogance considering the overwhelming evidence that this bill will hurt the state, not help it. So we’re 50/50 on the day. One step forward, one step back.

Habs Hockey Fans – So the Montreal Canadians fans called 911 to report an assault because one of their players got checked in an NHL hockey game? What’s next, reports of speeding at the Grand Prix of Canada? Give me a break.


Ups and Downs of the Week

Sam Adams Noble Pils – Glad they brought it back. Good stuff.

Sam Adams Noble Pils

NFL – While state workers and teachers are in danger of losing their livelihoods in the name of balancing state budgets, the NFL prima donnas on both sides of the table are arguing over how best to split up their billions. Something is very wrong here.

Springtime – Still one more snow storm coming, I think. But the days are getting longer and warmer and soon we’ll be into DST.

Oil Prices – Supply and demand have been pretty stable, but the price of oil climbs by the minute, mostly due to speculator fears (read: greed). “We have nothing to fear but fear itself.” Indeed.

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