Sunday, April 23, 2017

Blinded By Science

Saturday there was a march for science.

Weird, but when I was a kid my Mom made us watch the moon landing, and we spoke of scientists and astronauts as brilliant people who were doing things that were too heady for us regular folk to understand.

There were thoughts of trips to Mars, colonies on the moon and flying cars. We would soon figure out alternative energies, and be able to manage the pollution, and maintain the beauty of a planet that we were fortunate to inhabit.

Now, however, scientists are considered to be weirdos of sorts. Their spouting about climate control, their whining about pollution...



"Leave it alone!"

"It's all just theory!!"

I don't know when it became an argument between religion and science.

Evidently if you think Adam and Eve were alive in the Garden of Eden, you're dead set against the dopes who warn that polluting the world is not good.

I believe that I understand the problem a little.

No one believes that they're below anyone else anymore.

A guy like Einstein would be widely abused these days:

"Freaking nutbag cant even comb his hair and we all know that pie ain't got nuttin' to do with no maths!!"

That above sentence might actually be sent as a text or a tweet these days.

I thought of that when I followed an argument between one of my teachers (who actually has a doctorate in science) and one of his former students who may have eked out a 65 to pass Earth Science.

On line the failed student and the brilliant educator were on equal footing when debating evolution.

"It's called the theory of evolution! You don't believe in God!! That makes you dumb!!!"

Somehow I believe there is room for smart people.

But what the hell do I know?

I'm one of the dopey bastards... they say.

Saturday, April 22, 2017

My Bad

I usually never leave the hotel room when I go out of town. The travel is by design these years because it gets me off my feet for awhile.

Heating pad or ice pack and I'm ready for the days of endless site visits when I'm in Buffalo...

...unless my buddies want to grab dinner.

Well, on this trip, dinner was out as one friend was away, but the other called me as I was watching "The Big Lebowski."

"Come on out. I gotta' grab dinner."

The place was three minutes away from my hotel room. I went.

The atmosphere in the sports bar was lively as the hockey and basketball games were on. The Yankees were off, but a photo of Reggie on the wall spurred a lot of talk about days gone by. I even ordered a beer...something I do about twice a year.

As we talked about the 1978 team a man beside me started to chime in. He was funny and well-informed, and much to my dismay, he also appeared to be visually impaired.

But no one cared...he was making us laugh.

Then he reached for his big glass of beer, and missed...

...the full glass tipped over and shattered, making a tremendous racket. When the bartender came by to clean up the glass he pointed at me and said:

"He did it."

(Told you he was funny).

"No harm," she said to me, as I decided to take the hit for him.

She refilled his beer and turned away. We laughed.

Three seconds later, he reached for the beer again.

And missed.

The beer went head over heels to the floor, and I looked over in shock at the poor man.

"That was my bad," he said.

And I Swear to God, I laughed harder than I've laughed in ten years.

He didn't get another beer.

He was supremely embarrassed, but the harder I laughed the easier it became for him.

We went back to talking about baseball, and I felt badly for him and his limited eye sight.

"That was my bad," I quoted him a little while later.

"Ah, what the hell you gonna' do, right? Life's a bitch."

So glad I went out for an hour.

Friday, April 21, 2017

"I Went Without My Annual Bonus"

I was listening to a CEO from a banking company as he was interviewed on one of the news programs.

The bank had come into some trouble during his reign and 50 or so employees took a fall. The CEO being interviewed (let's call him Mr. Potter) was getting heat because those employees lost their job, but Mr. Potter came through it with a healthy raise...

...about two million per year to a annual salary of $12 million.

"Well, I did take on additional duties," Mr. Potter said. "I had a lot of extra pressure added to my day-to-day."

The interviewer spoke of the bail-out the bank had received and the poor common dopes who were called frauds and lost their jobs.

"A lot of people really suffered during your years at the helm," the interviewer said.

"But the annual bonus I normally received as a part of my package was denied me for two years," Mr. Potter said.

The whine in his voice made me ill.

"But you also received a two million raise in your salary," the interviewer pushed on.

"I had additional duties!" He said angrily.

The interviewer was actually very tenacious.

"Do you feel bad about the people who lost their jobs during that time?"

"I feel bad about a lot of it," Mr. Potter said. "The lost wages for those people and our lost bonuses. A lot of  people really suffered. Yet I'm the man that the board of directors chose to help us through it."

"And they gave you a considerable raise," the interviewer said.

"With added responsibility!" Mr. Potter yelled as he walked away.

Poor guy.

He had to struggle through on a meager $10 million per year...

...without a bonus!

Cat food all around!!

I honestly don't begrudge anyone the money they make. Yet the man was so irritating!

He couldn't understand why the interviewer was so perplexed by the raise in pay.

He had suffered!!!

There was a whole bunch of money stolen back when the regulations were eased.

The government bailed them out.

Everyone seems to be back on solid footing again!

Bonuses all around!!

And they are easing the regs again...

...what could possibly go wrong?

Thursday, April 20, 2017

What A Sad, Sad Life

The American tragedy that was Aaron Hernandez is nearly over.

All that is left is the pain of the destruction that he left in his wake.

Hernandez was a gifted athlete...

...the older I get...

...the more I realize that being a good athlete has zero to do with being a decent human being.

I first learned that when O.J. Simpson just destroyed the childhood adoration of all the Buffalo-born kids.

(But, hey, he's still in the ring of honor!)

Yet, Hernandez is truly a horrific story.

His big troubles began when his Dad died. Aaron was on his way to Florida to play football when he lost his father, and all sense.

At Florida there were troubles. His quarterback there, Tim Tebow (a true All-American boy) tried to help his disturbed teammate, but everyone knew that Aaron would have to find his way, or bad things would happen.

In New England, he found stardom. Robert Kraft, Hoodie, and Tom Brady (the 🐐) all tried a little guidance, but there was too much money, too much fame, and way too little sense.

Hernandez was angry at the world.

He had guns. He had drugs. He fancied himself a gangster of the Scarface variety.

He was convicted of murdering one man.

There were charges on two other deaths.

He beat those charges, but someday we may find out how many people he actually had a hand in killing.

He deserves zero sympathy.

But the tragedy of such a wasted life is not wasted on me.

God Gave him gifts...

...we are all granted gifts of varying degrees.

Aaron Hernandez received the gift and spat at it angrily...

...and he totally destroyed himself.

That all happened a few years back...

...yesterday he just made it official.


Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Scooter & White

On Monday night I was watching the Yankees-White Sox game...

...which is not all that unusual.

I was texting back and forth with Pops and I became involved in a conversation with a couple of Yankees fans on Twitter.

It started innocently enough as we critiqued Al Leiter as the color man with Michael Kay on the YES broadcast.

Soon enough we were chatting about our favorite announcers (Kay, Stone and Sterling in small doses) and we all agreed on who we hate doing baseball (Joe Buck).

Then Rob (a guy I just met on Twitter) mentioned that Scooter and White were the best.

Instantly I was taken back in time to the late 70's and early 80's.


I thought of the summer days with my brothers, sisters and Mom and Dad. (And hundreds of friends). We used to watch the games in the garage. The screen door on. Eating cukes and tomatoes.

And laughing at Phil Rizzuto (Scooter) who would entertain us with stories of his wife, Cora.

He'd eat cannoli. He'd talk about leaving early. He'd tell stories right over the action and then he'd say:

"Holy Cow! I missed a homer, White!"

But when Rob mentioned that team I thought about the time that Scooter opened the broadcast by saying:

"Welcome to Yankees baseball, I'm Bill White."

As Bill White burst out laughing beside him.

I was probably about 12 years old when that happened, and I hadn't thought of it in the 40 years since!

And the miracle of miracles???

About 5 seconds after I mentioned it, Rob posted the clip.

And I laughed out loud again.

Scooter was the best.

Those were the days!

(Thanks for the laughs, guys).

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Facebook Live

On Sunday a story broke about a man in Cleveland, Steve Stephens, who recorded himself walking up to an elderly man, (who he didn't seem to know) and pressing a gun to his head...

...shooting the man dead...and letting the recording go for three minutes.

Stephens recorded himself murdering someone.

I suppose that it was only a matter of time.

We all have cameras and video recorders. We can now document every moment of our lives... eventually someone was going to record a murder of someone who was killing just to kill.

I recall the Pennsylvania politician, Bud Dwyer, who killed himself on television.

I saw that footage once.

Over 30 years later and I still can't unsee it!

Yet I'm not surprised by the Stephens report of murder being recorded.

What would surprise you?

We now all get news releases straight to our phone:

"Active shooter reported @ (Pick the city)."

Does that news report even phase you anymore?

In San Bernadino a couple of weeks ago a man shot his estranged wife, and then himself. Prior to taking the cowards way out he also shot two 8-year-old children.

No one even blinked at that story.

Three dead...

...ah well.

What else is happening?

The Syria bombs were dropped, reportedly because our leaders saw images of children being gassed.

Just knowing that kids were being killed as they tried to flee their worn-torn nation wasn't enough...

...the bombs got dropped after the images were seen.

Maybe that will up the ante.

People filming their murders.

Just what we need.

You think we will we ever figure it out?


Me neither.

Monday, April 17, 2017

Neat Stuff

Emma Moreno, of Italy, died recently. She was 117 years old and it's believed that she's the last person born in the 1800's to die. They're all gone now. That's what's weird when you think about it.

All new people.

I was reading the story of Rod Carew and his heart transplant. Carew was an unbelievable hitter during the years when I was growing up. He slapped singles all over the place. He also stole home 8 times in one year.

And as he aged his heart gave out.

Last year he received a new one from a 29-year old athlete, who suffered a fatal aneurism. Konrad Reuland was also a professional athlete having played tight end in the NFL. His death was horrific, but his family got to hear his heart beating again... Carew's chest.

And here is the really neat part:

Konrad had met Carew as a child and had been absolutely thrilled with the chance to meet such a big star.

Konrad's parents communicated it all to the grateful Carew. I hope that kid's heart beats for a long time now.

Another neat thing???

The Yankees have played good ball since I wrote the blog calling them out after their bad first week.

I'm not saying that it's all because of me, but they have a good mix.

It's an interesting team, to be sure.

So, I'm in good shape through the summer.

Blinded By Science

Saturday there was a march for science. Weird, but when I was a kid my Mom made us watch the moon landing, and we spoke of scientists and ...