Tuesday, August 13, 2013

(jeopardy contestant voice) potpourri for 800, alex ...

"How many roads must a man walk down,
Before you can call him a man?
How many seas must the white dove sail,
Before she can sleep in the sand?

How many times must the cannonballs fly,
Before they're forever banned?
The answer, my friend?
Is blowing in the wind!
The answer is blowing in the wind! ..."

-- "Blowing In the Wind" by Joan Baez.

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Truth be told ... I'm having a severe case of writers block lately.

I have a number of things I'd like to write about.  For example, the ridiculousness of offering up a nearly $7,000 reward to catch the "assassin" of a deer that lives in a cemetary, when 68 -- 68! -- different people have died as the result of a homicide within a ten mile radius of said cemetary this year, and there isn't a reward even approaching $5,000 to bring their killers to justice, let alone the $6,000 alone that PETA ponied up to find the killer of this deer.

Talk about an outrage.  We, the citizens of Kansas City, the greatest metropolitan area this great nation has to offer, treat the shooting of a freaking deer as more of an outrage than the killing of sixty eight of our fellow citizens in a ten mile radius of each other.  And that doesn't count those who survived, for crying out loud.

There's something seriously, seriously wrong with that.

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Or, the insanity, the utter insanity, of the President of the United States using a late night talk show to announce to the nation why he closed twenty one embassies around the world for a week.  Let this sink in.  THIS is what we voted for?  THIS is what constitutes leadership -- announcing that we face our greatest terror threat in a decade ... on a late night talk show?  On a comedy show?  THIS is what counts as leadership?

I don't agree with Mr. Limbaugh very often ... but he's absolutely right about one thing.  How in the hell can anyone express outrage over treating the President like a baffoon at a rodeo ... when he treats US, the citizens who (idiotically) re-elected him, like baffoons at a rodeo?  If the President treats national security as a punch line, why is anyone surprised half the country treats him like a punchline?

Furthermore, and Lord knows I despised Mr. Bush even more than I despise Mr. Obama ... but where was the outrage when Mr. Bush was portrayed as Curious George?  As the village idiot?

As the biggest Curious George fan you'll ever meet, I'm still outraged at insulting that special little monkey, like he was insulted, for the first eight years of the previous decade.

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Or the Chiefs.  Was that an amazing first drive or what on Friday night?  I was ecstatic, enthusiastic.  I believe I even cracked open a bottle of something.  Without question -- (allard baird voice) without question! -- that was the most impressive drive the Chiefs have put together since before Chuck Weis accepted the offensive coordinator's job at the University of Florida.

Having noted that ... uuh ... remember this gem, from my recap of the preseason home opener last year:

* But the first quarter ... wow.  Literally, wow.  I've argued all offseason that the single best move any team made over the last eight months was the Chiefs upgrading at the offensive coordinator position by hiring Brian Daboll.  A man who turned crap that stinks worse than two week old garbage such as Derek Anderson, flotsam and jetsum such as Matt Moore, and washed up afterthoughts like Reggie Bush and Peyton Hillis into legitimate Pro Bowlers (aka "not a replacement, but an actual first ballot selection Pro Bowler"), well, imagine what he can do with Jamaal Charles, the Three B's at wideout, and the Fourth B at tight end!

I spoke with "The Voice of Reason" earlier today, and he noted "have we ever seen a better offensive outing in a preseason game?"  And the answer, honestly, is no.  Look it, the Al Saunders years were incredible.  The 2002 Chiefs are the greatest offense ever assembled.  (And the worst defense ever to take the field, hence the 8-8 record).  But everything we did in preseason was vanilla.  The Paul Hackett years were underrated and under-appreciated in hindsight, but again, like Saunders, Hackett held back in preseason. 


Daboll didn't really showcase much last night either ... but we absolutely lit up the Cardinals like a joint at a Ben Harper concert.  They couldn't stop the first team offense.  Two drives, both 70 plus yards, both less than 6 plays, both ending in touchdowns.  The last time I saw a start like that out of the Chiefs, honestly?  Was the season opener against the Jets in 2005, when we ran the EXACT SAME PLAY (offtackle right left) three straight times, for 78 yards and the touchdown.


The mark of a great offense, is when the defense knows exactly what's coming at them, and is powerless to stop it.  Brian Billick's Vikings offenses were like that in the mid to late 1990s.  Ditto shanarat's offense in the later elway years in denver, the Saunders years here in the early 2000s, and going back a ways, Norv Turner's offenses in Dallas to open the 1990s.  The Cardinals appeared to be well-defensed last night, and couldn't stop the first team offense.  That's a very promising sign.



In the words of Scott Parks: "Oh God."

In the words of the Spanish Bumble Bee on "The Simpsons": "Aye yay yay!  No me gusta!"

In the words of me: "Steve Rule 34"*.

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(*: man, these rules need some serious updating.  Three years?  Really?  I think I finally got some inspiration to write!  But seriously, Steve Rule 34.  To use a phrase from my algebra teacher back in the day, Ms. Summers: "it's a given".)

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Or maybe it's this:

It's August 13th ... and the Royals sit four games out of a wildcard berth (with both the Rays and A's fading fast), and six and a half out of the divisional lead, in second place behind Detroit.

Oh, and did I mention the Royals not only are a league-leading 19-5 since the break ... not only have their next two against a Marlins team that has played beyond it's potential, but we should at least split against ...

But the Royals play five -- FIVE! -- games in the next six days against the Detroit Tigers, who they are chasing in the Central?

Solo game Thursday.  Double header Friday.  Solo shot Saturday, solo shot Sunday.

And we do it all over again, for four more, in three weeks at The K.

Let this sink in, Royals fans.  We're in a pennant race for the first time in a decade!  And this time, we aren't fading down the stretch (like 2003), we're getting better with each game!

(Oh, and it should be noted: the last Royals team to reach the postseason ... and yes, I am fully aware I was eight years old when that happened ... was 44-42, 7 1/2 back, in third place, at the All Star Break.  They did not gain first place solo until September 6th, and were tied with the Angels with four games to play.  This Royals team?  Had a worse record ... but was also 7 1/2 back, in third place, at the All Star Break.  I'd kill to be tied with Los Tigres with four games to play ... especially with not one, but two, potential wild card spots that 1985 team, didn't have to fall back on ...)

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My fantasy football team has the first pick in our "2 Legit 2 Colquitt" League draft Sunday night.

team tito version 1.0* has never picked first, in any draft it has been a part of, and this is the (hang on, carry the two ...) seventeenth version of this league, dating back to its inception in the fall of 1997.

Thanks to the good folks at ESPN.com, we have a running nine year history of our league.  (Note: we've been with espn.com for every season ... but everything prior to 2004, is not archived.  Shady, ESPN fantasy dudes.  Shady.)

Here is a look at how every team has fared, over the last nine years:


(and your key to the footnote transactions:)


(photos: me, via the Snag-It program on my laptop.)

(And to my fellow 2 Legit 2 Colquitters ... you're welcome.  THE definitive history of our league.  Now let's get our commish ... aka "The Voice of Reason", to get this chiseled on the trophy, Borg Warner or Stanley style ...)

My keeper pick is Jamaal Charles ... and yes, I nearly had a coronary when I heard the chica who sits next to me shout out "oh God!  Charles!  On a cart!  This isn't good!", reading her Twitter account yesterday.  Also, we haven't even had the damned draft yet, and already collusion charges are being leveled.  Good grief, it's like Sebree never quit us* or something.

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(*: I'll never admit this out loud ... but I miss my biggest rival.  The "Under .500 Should Win It" ... aka, "Central" Division, just isn't the same without him.)

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Part of the reason for my writers block, I know, is because this week, and honestly, this month, are full of so many anniversary moments, both good and bad, that I hesitate to know where to begin.

So I'll start here ...

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Nineteen years ago Monday (August 11th), this hot as hell (at the time) seventeen year old to-be senior visited the TCU campus for the first time ... and was instantly hooked.  I knew the second I stepped foot on that campus, that it was where I wanted to spend the funnest four years of my life.

Nineteen years ago yesterday (August 12th), the MLB owners forced the MLB players to walk out, starting a strike that wiped out the postseason, wiped out the first three weeks of the 1995 regular season, gave rise to the phrase "scab player", and turned me as a hard core fan of the sport.  I was such a fan of baseball back then, that my dad actually moved up his vacation -- and our trip south -- a week, so that I could catch a game at the brand spanking new Ballpark in Arlington before the strike hit.

The Rangers wound up in three pennant races during my four years down there.  They fell two games short of the wildcard in 1995.  They won the AL West in 1996.  They won the AL West in 1998.

To this day, I'm not sure which was my favorite playoff game down there -- Game 3 of the 1996 Divisional Series (when Darren Oliver overpowered the Yankees for eight innings, only to have the bullpen blow game three, and the series, in the ninth) ... or game three in 1998, which was scoreless when a monsoon hit in the sixth inning, a game the Yankees eventually won 3-0 at about 2:30 in the morning.  That first home playoff game in franchise history was amazing.  But 1998 ... you'd have had to live down there in the late summer / "fall" of 1998, to understand why 51,000 plus were just standing in the rain, applauding like it was the greatest day of their lives.

Because it was the day the insane streak of 90 plus degree temperatures -- to say nothing of literally 1/5th of the year being ABOVE 100 freaking degrees! -- finally broke.

And to think, people wonder why I want so desperately to move back.

Oh, and it was the monsoon that deluged the Ballpark for three hours that night?  That not even 48 hours later, led to the infamous "Rain Game" at Arrowhead, between the Seahawks and Chiefs ...

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Nine years ago a week from today, my buddy James past away.  It both saddens and disgusts me, that I'll have to update the permalink on the far right side of this site, at the very top, and change "eight" to "nine".

Also, nine years ago a week from Sunday, was the Projekt Revolution tour concert at Sandstone.

My true thoughts on each, can be read if you, uuh, read through "The Decade That Was: 2004" post, uuh, posted, earlier this year ...

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A week from Saturday, Unca Teve will arrive bearing gifts (aka "whatever crappy toys their mom and dad ask for) for his "Special Little Girls", for their third birthday.

Tomorrow (Wednesday August 14th), my "Special Little Guy" will start kindergarten.

Wait ... was it really only yesterday, my "Special Little Guy" was lounging like the biggest pimp alive?

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The anniversary I'm dreading the most this next week though, is ... well, to haul out a voice I never have before: (don mclean voice) "the day the music died".

Thursday, August 15th.  The one year anniversary of the single most ... revolutionary?  Stunning?  "Cold cocked out of nowhere?", insulting text I've ever received?

"Wayne needs to know who your third is".

Sadly, that text will never be sent to me again.  Yes, sadly, believe it or not.

Because my teammate Penny let me know today, that our league commissioner is not returning this fall for our bowling league.

Wayne is stepping down, and walking away.  Quite frankly, we've lost too many damned good ones over the last few years.  Dale's all but out due to health reasons.  He and Sue are gone half the season on vacation anyways.  The Duffy's show up half the time at best; ditto the McPeek's.  Wayne's now out (and one can only hope, Mari with him.  Wait, did I just type that out loud?)

I have been told, I need to forgive the two of them (and again -- we all know who "them" is), for the wrong they have done to me.

Sorry, but that isn't happening.  Until they agree to sit across a table from me, and be held accountable, and accept the consequences, for all the wrong they've done -- the same thing they demand I do?

We're done.

Even Jesus has a final judgment day, when he won't take any more fertilizer* out of people.

I've reached mine, a year after this ... stuff ... started.

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Anniversaries.  Not many of them good this week -- be it the strike, Thursday, or next Wednesday.  All caused by voluntary actions, voluntary choices, by the "offending" party -- free will, if you will.

And in the words of Al Pacino in my second favorite movie of all time: "Free will!  It is a b*tch ..."

(*: my mommy asked me not to swear so much.  I believe, other than an occasional hell or damn that she tolerates, this one was bomb free.  Yay?)

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