Monday, January 26, 2004
Monday, January 19, 2004
The other thing I don’t get is why we called the dead deceased. Usually the de- prefix means that the opposite of the root word is taking place, i. e., detrain, derail, deracinate, so on and so forth. So wouldn’t it make more sense if we referred to the dead as the ceased, as in the ceased Bob Hope?
Saturday, January 17, 2004
Today, quantum mechanics suggest that the noodle is, in fact, the string of modern string theory, the underlying force behind all matter and energy in the universe, although quantum mechanics have been known to exaggerate after a few beers, as witnessed by recent claims by some quantum mechanics that they have fixed the life cycle, when in fact anyone can see for themselves that they have put the seat on wrong and that the tires are way too small. If, however, an egg noodle is the string at the heart of creation, then the conundrum Bill challenges reasserts itself with greater force. Therefore, the chicken, the egg, the noodle, and the primordial soup; which came first…and why?
Wednesday, January 14, 2004
There are and there will continue to be those who wonder why drug addicted and / or alcoholic players keep getting second, third, or fifty-third chances while Rose has been ejected from baseball for a lesser crime. The answer to that argument is simply this: a drug addicted or alcoholic player hurts no one but himself. His addiction will interfere with his play and will eventually get him benched and then fired; his reputation as a substance abuser will follow him to every team he signs with. He will not get the slack that other players will get; fans will think every mistake he makes on the field is a sign that he has surrendered once again to his addiction. Gambling, on the other hand, calls into question the integrity of the game itself. The fan in the stands does not know in such a situation if what he sees on the field is honest effort or elaborate fraud, if the two teams he sees are trying to win or whether there is another secret agenda behind what is happening on the field. The Cincinnati Reds fan of the late 1980’s could not know if the actions Pete Rose took as manager were a result of baseball acumen or a need to cover a bet. Pete Rose knew he was breaking the rule; he should not be allowed to weasel his way out of the consequences now.
Monday, January 12, 2004
Saturday, January 10, 2004
So a group of South American tourism ministers tired of waking up with a mile of ice on their front lawns went to see O’Ryan, who’d just won the championship of Europe from a mountain lion he later turned into a coat, and asked Paddy and his manager if there was some way to get him to fight Frost. Paddy said he’d fight if Frost would agree, but he was pretty sure Frost wouldn’t; he had a good deal going and he wasn’t going to take a chance getting his ass whipped.
The ministers went home, convinced that they had failed in their mission. And then a miracle occurred. A junior member of the Brazilian delegation leaked what Paddy had said to the New York Daily News, which announced in a banner headline, I’LL WHIP HIS ASS!!! Jack Frost took one look at that headline and demanded a match immediately, despite the best efforts of his manager to calm him down.
The fight was scheduled for Madison Square Garden and the fight was fought after the cops cleared all the rioting smokers and lesbian vegans out of the building and Jack Frost, to his shock and amazement, lost. Desperate to hang on to the money he was making off Frost, his manager invoked a clause in the fine print that gave Jack the right to a yearly rematch. The mayor of New York said that there was no way in hell that these two fighters were going to meet in his city again, not after the riot they’d caused, and so the next year’s fight was moved to Weehawken, New Jersey, near the place where Alexander Hamilton was shot and killed and went to spend eternity on the ten dollar bill.
Well, let’s just say that Jack lost that fight too, as well as destroying much of Weehawken’s waterfront, and the fight was finally moved to the Milky Way, where the boys could have at it without disturbing the neighbors too much. So they have at it every year; Jack Frost tries to win, and the money from the snow blowers and the ski resorts and everyone else who makes a nickel out of there being snow on the ground goes into his manager’s pocket, and every year he loses and goes to Aruba to get in shape for next year’s fight. You’d think they’d be tired of it by now, but Jack’s manager has an ironclad contract written by some of the smartest lawyers in New York and it looks like we’ll have to watch this go on for millennia to come.
The niece wrote all of this down and thanked me. Two days later she hit me across the back with a baseball bat. It’s a good thing to encourage girls to take up sports.
"And through some mooned Valhalla there shall pass
Battalions and battalions, scarred from hell,
The unreturning army that was youth,
The legions who have suffered and are dust."
Prelude: The Troops, by Siegfied Sassoon.