Sunday, March 14, 2010

Cookie Monster

I spend a lot of time watching old reruns of Sesame Street on You Tube since becoming a dad.  While Elmo is everywhere, my favorite is Cookie Monster.  His humor is subtle, but probably makes me laugh the hardest.

Enjoy, some things are timeless. Sesame Street is one of those things.  All I know is that Jim Henson had to be smoking a ton to bring his visions to life.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Spring Training is Here...Calling Mr. Morton

Baseball season is upon us. The kid has reported for duty in Bradenton, FL, and all that awaits is a season full of expectations that should be fulfilled. Charlie's part of the Bucs rotation, and we're all pulling for him.

Charlie also blogs for the Pirates. As a fellow blogger, I must promote his posts. Here is the link to Charlie's entries.

Finally, I have posted a link below from the Pirates' website. The web post below was about the benefit concert Charlie played in to help raise money for the victims in Haiti. Mr. Morton is a talented musician, but I'll let his skills in the videos speak for themselves.

Good luck this season #37...We're watching ya. Remember, it's just a game. Go out and have fun, and the skills you've got will follow your mind.

Link to Article on Morton's Benefit

All I Need

Link to Charlie's Music

My Theory on Tiger Woods

It's obviously been harder to find the time to post these days, but as an observer of current events, and as a golfer, I'd like to offer my humble opinion on the world's reigning #1 ranked golfer.   I initially posted when the news came out here, but as time has passed and the details have followed, I will refrain from commenting on the already obvious.

Some of my short and sweet thoughts are as follows:

1.  TW does not owe me an apology.  I never looked at him as my hero, nor should you.  Be your own hero, no one is perfect.  No one. 
2.  It makes you wonder if you ever really know someone.
3.  Unfortunately, I think it will come out that TW used performance enhancing drugs PEPs. 

While all the usual debate has been done, the most fundamental question to help understand TW's behavior is "why?"  What is the motive?  I truly believe that TW has never been the same since his father passed.  Tiger's whole motivation in life was to dominate a white-dominated sport as a person of color.  And this motivation came specifically from his father Earl, who molded his son into a vehicle to truly change the world.  I think the mission was accomplished, but now you see the cost.

The revelations about TW's addictions make sense.  Addiction, no matter what you are addicted to, is all about medicating the pain you feel.  For TW's addictions to become as strong as they were, that he would engage in behavior to risk the world that he "owned" is truly telling.  But if I were to put myself in TW's shoes, perhaps his purpose and sense of direction died when Earl passed.  Perhaps the pain Tiger feels is that the celebrity he has created and manufactured has reduced him to what feels like an object, a means to an end to sell product and generate dollars for everyone around him.  Any being would probably medicate themselves and engage in behavior that dulled this pain too, given that everyone around you sees you as an asset, not a person. Now that the only person Tiger actually trusted and believed, the person who created the image to "just do it," is gone.  Maybe the image and standard isn't what Tiger actually wants anymore now that he's woken up.

I also unfortunately think that it will later come out that TW used PEPs.  The use of these drugs to live up to the standard built by TW could easily drive someone to seek any advantage to maintain their status.  Where there is smoke, there's fire, and while innocent until proven, it just seems that lately there's too much smoke where a fire should be.  I think if TW is truly honest with himself given the bottom he's hit, when he faces the pain he feels, he will come forward with everything and believe me, it will be all fit the pattern.

As a final note, if you think this is that far fetched, think about what Andre Agassi has recently acknowledged.  While the parallels around their stories about their over-bearing dads are not deliberately brought up in this post, I think the actions Andre went through to conceal his disgust for the image he "was" during his heyday is no different than what has begun to unfold here.  Wearing my golf hat now, the greatest question for golf fans is this:

Do you think Tiger will be the same golfer he was when he comes back?

Maybe.  But this blogger believes that the answer is no.  The motives that drove TW to be great, to dominate a sport so completely, may be gone if he truly deals with his pain.   But he will probably be a happier person to have finally let go of the things that drove him to engage in the things he has.  And that is the reason why we should all watch and care about the outcome.

Just my humble opinion.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Kribensis Babies

Just noticed that the Kribensis pair in my fishtank had some babies. There's about 24 fry, and mom and dad are always close by. These are cute little buggers. Here's a link to some info on Kribensis breed.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Pootie Tang -- 2009 Fantasy Football Champion

It's official, I won the fantasy football league this year. Team Pootie Tang went 13-3 and was #2 in the Power Rankings.  Some notes from the tremendous year;

Drafted and kept:
Phillip Rivers, QB
Thomas Jones, RB
Marques Colston, WR
DeSean Jackson, WR
Matt Forte, RB

Picked up and won with:
Tim Hightower, RB
Jamaal Charles, RB
Vernon Davis, RB
Saints ST/Defense
Rob Bironas, K

After drafting Forte #4 overall, he killed me all season, but I kept him for match-ups.  The pickups absolutely won me the championship.  Finally, I got the first-round bye in week 14, then played the guy who had Kurt Warner week 15.  I lost by 3.5 points, but then the NFL comes out and says that one of Warner's TD passes to Anquan Boldin was a lateral, and as such, ruled  a rushing touchdown for Boldin, no TD for Warner.

Pootie goes from a loss of 3.5 points to a win by 2.5 and gets into the championship.  I will say that the guy I beat had Manning and Collie week 16, and we all know what was going on by then.  But a win is a win.

Congrats to Jon's Pootie Tang for winning the Championship! Jon beat out a tough team fielded by Mark's Real Men of Genius. Jon had a great year, winning 4 high points, taking the #2 seed, chasing Jason for the points title, and then winning it all. Mark also had a great year, as he made it all the way to 2nd place.

Jon wins $        for first place.
Mark takes $       for 2nd.
Jason wins $       for the points title.

Peter's Where's the Beer takes the final high points payout, and I'll be mailing that along with the remaining checks later this week. Thanks for another great season, and I hope that everyone returns next year!

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Charlie Morton's First MLB Hit (08/07/08)

Here's a few clips and links to Charlie's first hit. Charlie got his first MLB hit, a double, against the Arizona Dimondbacks on August 7, 2008 as an Atlanta Brave.

I'd been looking for the clip and found it on a site called Brave's Love . The clip and post-game interview are below, thanks again to Lauren for the comment on her blog! Sorry CM, couldn't edit out the subsequent pick...

Charlie's First Hit, a Double down the Left field line

Post-game Interview

Speculation on Fire Hydrants, Airbags and the #1 Golfer in the World

Lots of stuff out there about Wood's "car accident." I'll let you do your own Google searching, but it doesn't look good. But the bigger question is possibly, why are you surprised? I've always been skeptical of things that look a little too perfect since we all know people who constantly try to show us how great their lives are. Be very skeptical of those who tell you their family is perfect, etc. the truth is usually inversely correlated.

This is why I'd always prefer a beer with Phil. I hope America can handle another hero who is about to fall and be exposed. All that money and fame is so intoxicating to those who are shallow, because it's all about "how things look" rather than the hard work it takes to create something that's real. I couldn't care less, I know this sort of thing happens every day somewhere, but c'mon, you've got kids. Disrespect each other, fine, you're adults, but when kids are involved, it just seems a bit more sinister and narcissistic.

Look more closely, connect the dots, and ask yourself, do you really think an air bag would deploy if you hit a fire hydrant at 10-20 mph? Give me a break. That's what you get from a guy who probably worships Jordan now that his dad has passed. Maybe we'll see Tiger on Oprah soon asking the world for forgiveness, since so many people look to Oprah for inspiration.

Should be interesting, I know, I know, innocent until proven guilty. I'm sure he was just in a hurry to get to the driving range at 2:30 AM.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

My Allen Iverson Tribute

Allen is retiring after a 14 year career. Man this guy was something on the court.

and the famous Practice video....Not a game!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Bladeless Fan -- Dyson

Dyson, of the bagless vacuum fame, has launched his latest invention, the bladeless fan. Pretty cool idea, I've posted the video below. The fan has no blades, and as he explains, it's basically an air multiplier. In a nutshell, the fan works by creating a field of negative pressure by moving air across a curved surface. The air initially is drawn into the cylinder base, and then pushed out a slit that runs around the whole "circular frame". The small slit that the air is pushed out of and through accelerates the air much like putting your finger in a garden hose to get the water to move faster or farther does.

As the air is pushed across the curved surface of the fan's ring, the speed of the air above the inner part of the ring is moving faster than the air below the flat, outer part of the ring. This speed differential creates a pressure differential, ultimately producing an area of negative pressure. When you have negative pressure, the air then begins to move because of this pressure differential (think isobars on a weather map that ultimately result in "wind"...)Finally, what you the user ends up feeling is a cylinder of air (whose base is the size of the circular ring...) that moves towards you, versus the traditional way fans work by drawing air towards the blades, then "cutting" the air up and sending it towards you. Supposedly this cylinder of air is more forceful than the "cut" up air that a bladed fan throws at you in an inefficient manner. And once the cylinder starts moving due to the negative pressure field, air "behind the ring starts to also be drawn in and through the ring as well towards the user. Kind of makes sense actually.

It's an interesting concept, and the marketing spin is that it's safe and more powerful. The physics around this design are no different than what generates lift on an airplane wing. Looking for some reviews, but think about it, this guy makes an innovative change to a product whose design hasn't changed in centuries. Pretty awesome. Man I wish I were smart.

From the NYPost

Sunday, October 11, 2009

"This is Indexed" -- Great website

There is a great website out there called "This is Indexed." It's based upon the book by the same author, Jennifer Hagy. Jennifer is obviously a mathematician, and she uses a bunch of graphical functions to represent different ideas in an extremely slick and witty way. I wish I had thought of the same idea.

I've posted a pic from her website above to show an example. Here is a graph of the function f(x) = x^2. The function has a local minimum, which is important here since the dependent variable of "Confusion" drops to a minimum at a certain level of "Information" (the independent variable). But with insufficient information (Breaking News, Swine Flu) or too much information (think CNN, CNBC, a 2" snow forecast) then you get the far reaching impact of a simplistic graph shown above.

I love this site. Lots of good stuff here....enjoy. Ms. Hagy obviously shares my level of cynicism of the world and of people and their motives. Here are three more that have lots of wisdom that often goes unspoken.

"Entitlement vs. Disappointment"

"Bitterness vs. Time to Reflect"

"Time vs. Prestige and $$"