No Band For You… Six Months!

28 01 2009
Top o' the mornin' to ya, Gov'na!

Top o' the mornin' to ya, Gov'na!

Browsing around CNN.com this morning, I found a particular story that further proved how ridiculous we’ve become in America. John Coleman, the drum major for Cleveland Firefighters Memorial Pipes & Drums, quit after some hard to handle and (what I call) unnecessary publicity.

At the Inauguration of President Obama, the CFMP&D (try pronouncing that 10 times fast) marched in the parade. Obama reportedly smiled directly at John, and then waved at the band. Doing what any polite person would do, John nodded in acknowledgement and gave the President-to-be a slight wave in return. Sounds like a non-issue, right? Think again… According to Ken Rybka, the band’s Manager and Web Page Editor, the band rehearsed over and over, and knew it was a military parade. “Protocol and proper decorum had to be followed”, he said, according to CNN.com. For breaking “protocol”, John Coleman was suspended for… count it… six months. What I can’t grasp is the idea that a nod of the head, a smile, or a wave would be gestures that warrant any kind of suspension, regardless of the “protocol”. Sure, the band has rules, I get that. It’s definitely not my place to say someone was wrong here, but I can only imagine the amount of excitement, pride, and joy that Mr. Coleman felt when Obama looked right at him. What’s even better, is that Rybka is quoted to say that Coleman’s resignation “comes as a shock and surprise.”

Seriously?… Shock?… Surprise?… Would you like your name to be thrown all over national airwaves for something as minor as a wave, smile, and a nod of the head? Give me a break! Nobody needs this kind of attention for something so unimportant. To Mr. Coleman (and this is just my opinion here), he had a chance to connect with the oncoming President of the United States for just a moment, and that’s excitement that many would be foolish to pass up. It’s unfortunate that this country’s media, yet again, doesn’t fail to impress with the amount of non-stories out there, making Mr. Coleman an “innocent victim” (I put that in quotations because George Carlin, RIP, had a lot to say about the term ‘Innocent Victim’).

In review: Obama looked at Coleman. Coleman was excited. Coleman nodded, smiled, and waved at Obama. Coleman was suspended for breaking “protocol”. Coleman’s suspension became a national story. Coleman quits due to the publicity becoming a bit much to handle.

What have we accomplished?: Nothing positive. My thanks go out to the national media, who never fail to impress me with their lack of important stories, making me blog about this when I could be blogging about the Mets!… wait… nevermind… as long as Citibank has their name plastered all over the Mets franchise, I’ll pass.





Word of the Day: Collapse

29 09 2008

So what exactly did happen to the 2008 New York Mets? Here’s how I see things, and how some journalists are just looking to get readers to their columns by tagging this Mets season with some misleading terms.

Ted Keith and Jon Heyman over at SI.com both referred to this season as another “Collapse”. Why a collapse? Because for the second straight season, the Mets were beat out in the east by the Phillies after holding a lead in the division with (that magical number) 17 games to go, and were also beat out in the wildcard race. But the finishing touch on why they would call it another collapse is that the final blow, once again, came at the hands of the Florida Marlins. Touching Drama, yes? Wrong.

The 2008 season can be summed up in 2 words, which all Mets fans will understand divided the season into to “mini-seasons”. Those words are Willie and Manuel.

While I don’t completely blame Willie Randolph for his post-2006 failures, there was no doubt that his time as Mets manager was fading fast after the 2007 season. The first half of the season (until Willie’s firing) created not only a 34-35 record, but a large amount of angst and disappointment among the fans. This was supposed to be the year of ‘revenge’ or ‘payback’. After 69 games, that was not the case. But for the final 93 games, hope was restored. Despite missing the playoffs by a slim margin for the second straight season, Jerry Manuel took over Willie’s job and the first half of the season seemed like a meaningless faded memory. Under Manuel, the Mets finished the season going 55-38 the rest of the way. Carlos Delgado finally got his swing back, David Wright and Jose Reyes finally showed some life, Starting Pitching got better under Dan Warthen, and young faces like Murphy, Parnell and Niese began to display what the future may hold. I wouldn’t call the season a collapse by any means, but more of a rebirth of where the success started for this Franchise as far back as 1969: The Farm.

Fly Zapper

Back to the word of the day: “Collapse”. Why don’t we analyze that a little more, in relations to the world of Professional Sports. If I’m not mistaken, this article pretty much sums it up. If you’re at work or can’t view the link, the article (written by Bryan Armen Graham over at SI.com) is titles “100 Seasons… 100 Heartbreaks”, referring to Philadelphia’s (current and longest) championshipless drought of it’s 4 major sports franchises. The Phillies, Eagles, Sixers and Flyers have combined for a total of 100 Championshipless seasons since 1983. That’s 25 years without a major sports championship. I would gamble to call that a “Collapse” of an entire city, let alone 4 major sports franchises. But, this is New York City, and the media hovers to New York City like a fly to a zapper.

So while the ruling media continues to misinform for its own pleasure, I’ll sit back and smile as I think about the bright future this franchise could have as it enters it’s new home (even though I’m not completely happy about Citifield).

Lets Go Mets (add ridiculously “Hooo” exhale).





Major League Greedball – A New Outlook

12 04 2008

Jose Canseco

Last month, I wrote a pretty bad, yet cheesy, poem about Jose Canseco, and what I thought about his ‘name calling’ in his books and interviews. I made up my mind about him from the beginning, and never gave his word a chance. But that changed today, when I finally gave in and bought one of his books. I bought his newest release, ‘Vindicated’, from a Penn Station bookstore that was selling it at 20% off (not that the discount is what led me to buy it). It was time for me to give ‘Jose’ another chance. After all, my former opinion of his ‘allegations’ and ‘name calling’ was mostly fueled by the media bigwigs at ESPN or CNNSI, instead of my own cerebrally-formed opinion. So, here it goes.

[Start of ‘Bizarre Story’ Break]

I was riding the LIRR with my girlfriend, on our way to visit my grandparents, when a whole bunch of Mets fans got on the train at Woodside (I say Mets fans because they all had Johan Santana jerseys on). One of them caught a glimpse of what I was reading, and said down at me, “What does it say about A-Rod?“. I ignored him, and kept on reading, because I wasn’t about to get into a conversation with a guy on his way to a baseball game who already looked drunk (at 11:00am, mind you). He turned to a friend of his and continued by saying, “This kid is reading that Canseco book. Man, @&#% Canseco… and @$&% A-rod too“. Kid? Amazing how an 18 year old “kid” calls a 26 year old a kid (I know he was 18 because a friend of his had said “you’re NOT drinking at the game, you’re only 18”). Okay, how in the world would he know I’m 26 anyway… but that’s besides the point. Back to the post…

[End of ‘Bizarre Story’ Break]

I’m not going to give away the meat of the book, because I believe everyone (who has an interest in this topic) should buy the book and give it a chance. The guy is simply recalling his life, from start to present day. Sure, he names a bunch of players and recalls a lot of conversations, but that’s purely secondary to what he really talks about in the book. The majority of this new book was focused on two things (at least from what I took from the book):

A) Why steroids and performance enhancing drugs were kept so ‘quiet’ during the post ‘Strike of 1994’ years of baseball. (I happened to have the same ‘theories’ that he had)
B)
How steroids created a ‘Level Playing Field’. (That’s where I was a little skeptical)

My opinion on Jose’s claims haven’t change dramatically, but simply looking at what he has to say (lie-detector passed and all) has given me a whole bunch of new theories to rack my brain with. I will agree with him on this, though. “Chicks Dig The Longball”. How many of you remember that commercial with Greg Maddux, Tom Glavine, and Big Mac? Jose made a reference to that commercial in the book, and how it was a funny reference to the state of baseball back in the (now referred to as the ‘Juiced’) era. Fans (and sports coverage hounds like ESPN and others) love the home run ball. Whether it’s a solo shot, a grand slam, or a game-winner… there’s something about the ball being crushed into the next atmosphere that gives baseball fans an incredible rush. After reading this book, I’m starting to believe in the idea that Steroid use was kept quiet because it kept fans (notice I didn’t say ‘all fans’) in their seats, buying more tickets, buying more food/alcohol, and fueling the baseball economy.

None of this means I’m a believer in everything Jose says. What it means, is that I was knowingly hand-fed media garbage and used their opinions as my own. I accepted it without questioning it, and now I want my own opinion back.

So what have I learned from all this? While I never did know a whole lot about Jose Canseco, his book has given me some neat theories to play around with. Thanks Jose!

Believe what you want. Believe who you want. We’ll all believe who we want and what we want. It’s our god-given right to do so. But me? After all of the ‘Canseco Nay-Saying’ I did? I’m glad he opened his big mouth. Then again, the media-opinion-hungry kid on the inside wants this guy to fade away into the darkness that is the “Steroid Era” and never been heard from or seen again, along with everyone else involved. But then I’d just be a media-puppet… and we all know that’s no fun!

Respect My Authoritah!





Spitzer Gone Wild

19 03 2008

Just when you think the drama was over, it’s was only the beginning. I was browsing around CNN.com this morning to find out that just two days after Elliot Spitzer’s resignation as Governor of New York, another media frenzy broke loose over the internet when it was learned that Client 9’s girl might have been involved in the “Girls Gone Wild” videos when she was 18, or at least one man says she was 18. Joe Francis, the company’s founder, had recently reached out to Ashley Alexandra Dupre about appearing in a non-nude spread for his company’s magazine, and to join the “Girls Gone Wild” tour bus. He was ready to pay her a whopping $1 Million. But hold that phone! Someone in the company found her footage from old videos, and they featured a sample of the footage on the website’s homepage! I guess Joe made out like a bandit with this one.

But wait, there’s more! Joe claims she was 18 when the footage was shot, but her attorney claims she was 17 at the time, which would be against the “Girls Gone Wild” policy, and could result in more trouble for Francis.

Dupre Gone Wild 1Dupre MySpaceDupre Gone Wild 2
I wonder when “You, Me & Dupre 2” is coming out…

Does the media frenzy ever stop? Apparently not… now there’s a video floating around of Ms. Dupre being featured as a rapper’s girlfriend in a music video for “Pop Off” by Mysterious.

Gangsta…

First in Elliot’s arms, then in Girls Gone Wild, and now in a music video? This girl is everywhere! Where will she end up next? I have no idea… But I do know this… watching videos on this blog might lower your intelligence. But who’s counting, right? Enjoy!

Chess, Anyone?





Photo Time: Calling ‘Client 9’

12 03 2008

Bill Mitchell created yet another brilliant cartoon. This time, it’s current (and soon to be former in about half an hour) New York State Governor Elliot Spitzer. If you haven’t heard the new, he’s resigning in the midst of allegations of paying for the transportation of a prostitute to see him, and a bunch of other allegations. The cartoon that Bill draws up about the entire situation is brilliant, and I’d like to share it with all of you. Enjoy!

If you missed the actual resignation, I’ve got that for you too. Ready? Set? Go!

I wonder what ‘Client 9’ did with “Kristen” for all that money?

So, now that Spitzer is stepping down by March 17th, you’d think this is all over, right? No way! The American Media would never let that happen! It turns out, that Spitzer’s “call girl” has been identified as Ashley Alexandra Dupre. Was it completely necessary to ‘out’ the girl Spitzer was caught hiring via wiretap? No, I don’t think so. I actually feel terrible for all of the women involved in this whole ‘saga. I feel terrible for Spitzer’s daughters, wife, and entire family. I also feel bad for Ms. Dupre for all of the negative exposure she’s getting.

*sigh*… Such is the American Media. Or, just Media, in general…

Spitzer for President!





What a Curveball!

12 03 2008

Seriously! When I saw this video of Dodgers pitcher, Clayton Kershaw, my jaw dropped! When you see this curve, see if you can identify the expression on Sean Casey’s face. It’s such a good curveball, that Vin Scully calls it “Public Enemy Number One”! Well, enough of the waiting. Here’s Clayton Kershaw making a mockery of Sean Casey.

Calling Public Enemy… Flava Flav, where are you?

MLB Advanced Media had the video taken down because they don’t want to lose any money from people clicking over to YouTube to watch a 20 second clip, when you could be spending actually money paying for an mlb.tv account to watch tiny highlights. Some logic, huh? Anyway, his curveball was sick. If you have an mlb.tv account, try looking for the video.








%d bloggers like this: