Thursday, May 26, 2011

Curmudgeon in the Wry 502

Thursday, May 26, 2011---582 Words---Average Reading Time: 1 Minutes, 46 Seconds. (A pointless waste of time---time frittered away)

Offending readers and hindering productivity one issue at a time since 2001.

Continuing to call them as I see them.

Virtually free of original ideas.

Warning: Contains unsound bites from the apple of life.

Often wrong…never in doubt.





Being wrong is the risk you run by thinking and acting.

A Grumpy Old Man Production.

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Rave: Rita Hayworth.

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Reading: “The Name is Archer” by Ross Macdonald.

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On the Hi Fi: “In Love” by Dinah Washington.

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Under rated: Clint Walker.

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I miss: The Three Mesquiteers, Bobby Darin, Big Daddy Lipscomb, Lawrence Sanders.

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Rave: Perhaps the best sports story of the year goes to the University of Florida Women’s Lacrosse team. In just their second year of existence, they landed a #4 seed in the NCAA Tournament…that’s with a team of freshmen and sophomores, plus just two transfers. In the quarterfinals, they took a senior-laden 5-seeded Duke to the limit…a 9-8 lead late in the second half. Then Duke’s experience and bench strength took over for a 13-9 Duke victory. They were undefeated at home until the Duke game. Simply a remarkable story. Having seen them play twice, I can tell you that Gator team is excellent and will be a force for quite a while.

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Department of redundancy department: Exact same, end result, safe haven, free gift, added bonus, advance warning, revert back, past history.

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In Passing: Mark Haines was far and away my favorite member of CNBC. He was a fierce patriot, dedicated capitalist and intense believer in American exceptionalism. A savvy interviewer…but woe be unto he who gilded the lily or falsely represented his company’s prospects. On the curmudgeon scale, Mark was 14 out of a possible 10. Prince or pauper, CEO or candlestick maker, it mattered not---if you leveled with Mark, you had his utmost respect…if you crossed him, he never let his audience forget it. He was always fair. Among the many tributes, I thought Jim Cramer’s said it best---“I was a nobody---Mark made me a somebody.” Via con dios.

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Rant: Since the Airlines have been deregulated, the passengers have been way over regulated.

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Hmmm: If Government workers made most of their money from tips, how well do you think they would do?

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TV Time Out: “The Glades” returns on A&E on June 5th at 10 PM. First season was a treat, and second one looks great.

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Rave: USA Network’s “In Plain Sight” gets better and better with each episode. Great characters.

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Another TV Time Out: On Tuesday, June 7th “White Collar” returns to USA Network at 9 PM. At 10 PM, Annie Walker and the rest of the “Covert Affairs” crew come back for season two.

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Quote: “If you put the federal government in charge of the Sahara Desert, in five years there’d be a shortage of sand.”— Preeminent Economist Milton Friedman.

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Hmmm: Speaking of Government workers, if we got to vote on their benefits package how would you vote, more or less?

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Just asking: Is there anything more uncomfortable than an Adirondack Chair?

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Yet Another TV Time Out: “Burn Notice” returns on Thursday the 23rd of June at 9 PM on USA Network. Miami has never looked better.

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If you can read this, thank a teacher.

If you can’t, thank the teacher’s union.

If you are reading it in English, thank a Veteran.

That is all.

As you were.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Curmudgeon in the Wry 501

Saturday, May 21, 2011---704 Words---Average Reading Time: 2 Minutes, 8 Seconds. (A pointless waste of time---time frittered away)

Offending readers and hindering productivity one issue at a time since 2001.

Continuing to call them as I see them.

Virtually free of original ideas.

Warning: Contains unsound bites from the apple of life.

Often wrong…never in doubt.

Being wrong is the risk you run by thinking a

nd acting.

A Grumpy Old Man Production.

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Rave: Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

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Reading: “Riding the Rap” by Elmore Leonard---a Raylan Givens novel.

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On the Hi Fi: “Stop, Look & Listen” by The Highwaymen.

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Under rated: Wallace Berry.

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I miss: William Holden, Doak Walker, Mutt and Jeff, Ella Fitzgerald.

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Rave: Benjamin Netanyahu showed the world there is a vast difference between a leader (who is also a war hero) and a community agitator. All I can say to the Prime Minister is, “don’t go changin’.”

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Hmmm: What does Snookie do for a second act.

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Sad, but truism: Aside from the Williams sisters, no American (male or female), has won one of the Grand Slam tennis championships in the past seven years.

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Rave: TCM ran a very tasteful homage to Jackie Cooper as part of their “TCM Remembers” vignettes. Also, a good retrospective of his films. He was one of the few who got along with Wallace Berry.

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Rant: Babe Ruth and Ted Williams would have to be playing before I would sit in Fenway Park until 2:45 in the morning.

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Truism: Ownership has nothing to do with control. Ask any cat.

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Quote: “In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act.”—George Orwell.

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Hmmm: I never figured out why Superman wore a cape. Okay, I get the tights. If you’re flying faster than a speeding bullet, you want to be as aerodynamic as possible. If speed is what it’s all about, why slow yourself down with the cape? I’ll leave question of the unfortunate red underpants worn outside the tights for another day.

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Name Game: Juan Williams should change his name to Yawn Williams.

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Rave: The final Spenser novel written by Robert B. Parker, “Sixkill,” was a treat. Spring is Boston will never be the same.

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Rant: I am not the type to lose sleep worrying about whether or not Tiger Woods will win the four more majors to tie Jack Nicklaus.

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Rave: Especially given their minuscule payroll, the Tampa Bay Rays are a baseball miracle.

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Hmmm: Who knew that Johnny Damon would be among the American League RBI leaders in May. Certainly not I.

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Rant: The “Pirates of the Caribbean” craze will once again have to start without me, but that’s all right.

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Didjaknow: Adrian Gonzalez is the first Red Sox first baseman to throw left-handed to start a season opener since Bill Buckner.

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Hmmm: Does Katie Couric get to take her teleprompter with her to her new gig?

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Rant: If you can name the top-five hitters in the American League, you deserve to go to Cooperstown.

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Quote: “ I don't necessarily agree with everything I say.” -- Marshall McLuhan.

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Rant: Too many men are going with the ridiculous shaved head-full beard look.

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Hmmm: With oldies like Posada, Rivera, Jeter, Colon, et al, almost every day is Old Timer’s day at Yankee Stadium.

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Didjaknow: So far this season, MLB has the greatest percentage of shutouts since 192. The ratio of strikeouts to home runs is rising as well.

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Truism: Today’s teens don’t know anybody who came before Lady Gaga or Justin Bieber.

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Quote: “Interleague play has run its course and has worn off for me.” Tiger manager, Jim Leyland. I could not agree more…but then it never wore on for me.

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Rant: Big Ten officials are discussing a proposition that would pay athletes a small income to cover everyday expenses not included in their scholarships. Sounds like a scheme to help jocks pay for tattoos.

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Book Biz: Next week a 700-plus-page book on the history of ESPN will be released. Perhaps we’ll learn how that bozo Chris Berman manages to keep his job.

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If you can read this, thank a teacher.

If you can’t, thank the teacher’s union.

If you are reading it in English, thank a Veteran.

That is all.

As you were.


Saturday, May 07, 2011

Welcome to Bracketville---Gary Williams Retires Edition

Fastball pitcher, Gary Williams threw everyone a curveball when he announced his retirement.

At age 66, he looks a generation younger.

In 33 years of coaching, Gary Williams, like Bobby Knight and Coach K, never had so much as a whiff of cheating intimated. He was a straight shooter.

Dean Smith and Coach K are the only ACC coaches with more ACC victories than Gary Williams. They are also the only other coaches with longer ACC tenure.

He’s the only coach to take Maryland to the Final Four.

When his Maryland team won the 2002 national championship, he became the only men’s ACC coach outside the Triangle area (Duke, UNC, NC State) to win it all.

With his retirement, FSU’s Leonard Hamilton is second in ACC tenure.

Gary Williams went three years without a technical foul until the last game of the regular season this past March.

I’ll miss him and hope he truly enjoys his retirement.

Justified

Season two was pretty intense and great viewing. Those thirteen episodes went by in flash.
The series is based on an Elmore Leonard novella, "Fire in the Hole." It is included on Leonard's short story collection, "When the Ladies Come Out to Dance."

Raylan Givens is the feature character in two earlier Leonard novels. 1993's "Pronto" introduced Raylan. Leonard brought Raylan back in 1995's "Riding the Rap."

Both are set in Florida...Raylan is a US Marshall based in Palm Beach County.

It has been years since I read either novel. Both were keepers, so I have dusted them off and made them part of my summer reading program.

Wednesday, May 04, 2011

Curmudgeon in the Wry 500

Wednesday, May 04, 2011---551 Words---Average Reading Time: 1 Minute, 56 Seconds. (A pointless waste of time---time frittered away)

Offending readers and hindering productivity one issue at a time since 2001.

Continuing to call them as I see them.

Virtually free of original ideas.

Warning: Contains unsound bites from the apple of life.

Often wrong…never in doubt.

Being wrong is the risk you run by thinking and acting.

A Grumpy Old Man Production.

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Rave: Veronica Lake.

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Reading: “Red Dragon” by Thomas Harris.

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On the Hi Fi: “Too Cool” by Chet Baker.

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Under rated: Ann Sheridan.

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I miss: The Pied Pipers, Jack Harshman, Hedy Lamarr, Ross Macdonald.

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Rave: Justifiedhas become my favorite TV show.

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Rant: I’d rather watch the Kansas City Royals than the royal wedding, but that’s just me.

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Truism: The law of supply and demand is as reliable as the law of gravity.

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Didjaknow: The last American League MVP who was a switch hitter---Vida Blue in 1971.

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Hmmm: Does the world really need another “Scream” movie?

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Quote: “It was no mistake that when it came to symbols, the elephant, the animal that best exemplifies intelligence and strength without viciousness, would represent Republicans, while democrats, for all the obvious reasons, would be represented by the braying jackass.”—Burt Prelutsky.

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Rant: Wiffle ball is included on the New York state health department’s list of activities that pose a “significant risk of injury” to kids.

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Didjaknow: This year, July has 5 Fridays, 5 Saturdays and 5 Sundays. This happens once every 823 years.

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Truism: Wall Street donated far more to obama’s campaign than to John McCain’s. There are enough former Goldman Sachs execs in the obama regime to field a softball team.

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Rant: Pretending that something really is at stake during minor-league baseball playoffs doesn’t make it true.

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Hmmm: Even though it is part of the “every kid gets a trophy mentality,” I might get on board with Major league baseball adding two additional teams to the playoffs---if baseball would shorten the regular season.

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Quote: “Liberals don’t care what people do as long as it is compulsory.”—George Will.

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Factoid: For the month of April Fox News 4th Most-Watched Cable Net in Primetime; MSNBC #24, CNN #29. From 5 PM (Beck) to 10 PM Fox consistently grabs more audience than CNN, PMSDNC and Headline News---combined. If you’re watching PMSDNC, you’re a member of a very small club.

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More Ratings: USA Network is cable’s #1 in prime time---Nick is #1 in total programming day.

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Truism: The only thing worse than being wrong is being silent.

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Rant: “Seat license” has replaced “luxury box” as the worst phrase in sports.

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Rave: In retirement, there are no deadlines.

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Rant: The Miller Lite “man-up” commercials. Man up to do what---drink light beer…give me a break.

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Perfect Gig: Katie Couric would be the perfect host for the Yesterday Show.

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Truism: The next time the visiting team gets a big call down the stretch in an NBA playoff game might be the first.

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Practical Math: The Yankees have an average salary of $6.8 million, the highest of any American team…#2, the Lakers.

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If you can read this, thank a teacher.

If you can’t, thank the teacher’s union.

If you are reading it in English, thank a Veteran.

That is all.

As you were.

Welcome to Bracketville---Reduced Off Season Rates Available Edition

Of the 28 players Coach Roy Williams has signed to play for UNC since 2003, 19 are McDonald’s All Americans.

With an average attendance of 23,603 fans per game, Kentucky led the nation for the 15th time in the past 16 years. Jimmer Fredette carried BYU to #6.

UNC will start five former McDonald’s All-Americans next season…and bring an additional three off the bench.

In his four years at Duke, Kyle Singler played more minutes (4,887) than any Blue Devil in history. That’s a lot minutes available this coming season.

As Jim Larranaga takes over at the University of Miami, he leaves new George Mason coach, Paul Hewitt, with four returning starters.

Vanderbilt returns every relevant player from last season’s team that was good enough to get a #5 seed in the NCAA Tournament. Taylor Ezeli and John Jenkins could be first round picks after next season.