Friday, July 31, 2009

Papi and Victor

Two big news items over the last several days for the Red Sox. Today's news is the trade for Victor Martinez. The David Ortiz 2003 PED story is probably the bigger news and I feel obliged to acknowledge it, much as it pains me to do so.

The trade for Martinez first: I don't think this is as a big deal as it's been made out to be. The bat looks like an upgrade when he's taking Varitek's time but I don't know if he's near as a good a game caller as 'Tek? I imagine he'll take time from Lowell, too. His OPS has been dropping month by month. At 30, it's not like he's a long term solution at catcher, and the Sox have plenty of first basemen and DHs. The offense needs some punch. If he brings that like he's supposed to, it certainly won't hurt, but I wonder if he's really all that much help.

Now Papi. I've seen people, predictably, call for the Sox to have the 2004 World Series title stripped. I think everyone who isn't an adult bedwetter at this point realizes if you start penalizing teams for (leaked, in violation of contract and trust) reports of positive tests, then the record books are going to be full of asterisks, or strikethroughs, and we're going to have to basically wipe away the last 25 years of baseball stats and records. What we have is an era with a taint, but I don't think tossing it out is the answer. That said, I stand by my past statements that use of HGH, steroids, or any controlled substance by any player is cheating and, if caught, the cheaters should be suspended. I've been very critical of Barry Bonds and won't suddenly forget that I've called PED use cheating. This, for me, tarnishes Big Papi's reputation, as the revelation about Manny tarnish my memory of his 500th HR. But, y'know, it doesn't take anything away from what I felt in '04. Maybe it should, but it doesn't. And I guess that's partly why steroid era isn't really over.

Writing this makes me miss commenting on this blog (a little). I'm sure some folks are itching to tear into me and the Sox to rub it in and it would probably be fun to mix it up. I mean, it's not like the Yankees haven't employed their fair share of cheaters as well. (Any Mets for DubeMonkey? ) And I'd be interested to hear people's thoughts on who active top players are they think will never get linked to PEDs. Morneau? Pujols? Thome? Wright? There's AddaTweet and Reframeit if the urge is overwhelming.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Look Above to Benefit Below

Kim Stanley Robinson -- Exploring Space Can Help Us Protect the Earth -
"Another good reason for a vigorous space program is the immense potential of space-based solar power. This would entail infrastructure-building with a vengeance, but investing in a system of orbiting solar power collectors -- and ground stations to receive that power -- could stimulate the economy, much like building interstate freeways did in the 1950s. And gathering the sun's energy in space and beaming it down maximizes the harvest while minimizing the effects on the Earth."

Idiots, That's Who

The Birthers: Who Are They and What Do They Want? - Birthers - Gawker

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Kids Today

Blogtor Who: That's an intensely blue new Tardis exterior. Not sure the Prof. Jones looks totally suits Mr. Smith, but I'm not put off by any of the pix linked here. Just feeling really, really old. It's one thing when almost all the baseball players on your favorite team are younger than you but when Doctor Who is not only younger than you, he looks like he could be your offspring, that's a kick in the head.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Out Parcel Available

Who Owns the Moon? The Galactic Government vs. the UN
Dennis Hope, head of the Lunar Embassy Corporation, has sold real estate on the moon and other planets to about 3.7 million people so far ...

As his customer base grew, he said, buyers wanted assurances that their property rights would be protected.

So Hope started his own government in 2004, which has a ratified constitution, a congress, a unit of currency—even a patent office.

"We're now a fully realized sovereign nation," Hope said.

via Dusty Trice

Monday, July 13, 2009

Is He Being Attacked by Bees?

This ain't your daddy's Postal Service cover! | Music | A.V. Club: The video is ... meh ... but several of the comments make enjoyable reading while listening.
"I don't understand what the guy in front is doing. Is he being attacked by bees?"
"You gotta stay for 1:28 when the sensitive pretty-boy vocals come in. It achieves a surreal level of shittiness at that point. "
"Fred Dursts singing style has been hugely influential in today's metalcore scene. That's why music is doomed"
"i'm thinking your inability to find stamps and your refusal to go to the post office *may* be related." [There a USPS thread in the comments]


Stuff White People Like (via To Wit)

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Discovery to Extinction Just Like That

The Good News: A New Monkey Is Discovered; The Bad News: It Is Already at Risk: Scientific American: Fire ants, cockroaches, Fox News pundits -- soon to be humanity's only company on the planet.

You Should See My Desk

Banish Clutter by Evaluating Your Collections - Organization - Lifehacker: I know I need to read & watch the video in this post lest I end up leaving (the equivalent of) thousands of 78s to my heirs to sort through. So, I've collected the link and I'll, uh, get back to it. Soon.

The Commonwealth

Sadly, No! | "Massachusetts: Why we rule"

78 RPM

Collectors of 78 R.P.M. Discs Have Those Hard-to-Find Blues - 78s have a small but special place in my musical memory. My grandfather had thousands of 78s in his music room and the living room of the house on Central Ave. Those thin, hissing, and popping recordings of blues, Texas swing, old timey Country & Western, and Big Band music seemed like the musical equivalent of dinosaur fossils to me back in the mid-1970s. How many people more than a couple years younger than me have ever heard or even seen a 78, I wonder?

One thing that sticks with me is how bawdy much of the popular music/novelty songs of the 1930s and 1940s were. I guess that could've been more my grandfather's sampling of the era than the era itself, but I got the definite impression as a kid that we were living a more censored and repressed, less rollicking era than our forefather's did. Of course, it's just as easy to see it from the other perspective and think that popular music has been getting progressively more lewd. The truth in this case is probably closer to things not really having changed all that much; maybe it's only the slang and vocal mannerisms that have changed with the whims of fashion.


Blakk Rasta's Obama "Theme Song" In Ghana: Let's play predict the response of the ODS afflicted. Goes a little something like this, "Oh noes, teh Africans have infiltrated our Preznidensey and are singing about taking over America. This proves BHO is not a citizen. Birth cert in Ghana? Also must be a fake Christian since Rasta Muslims only sings about teh other Rasta Muslims. Good thing Palin bravely elevated self from AK governorship, was holding her back from investigating who Anti-C. is pallin' around with now."

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Like Sorkin

The Social Network (Facebook Movie): I was disinterestedly nonplussed by word that Fincher was lined up to make a Fbook movie. Then, it turns out Aaron Sorkin's working the script. Sorkin has been off the radar way too long. So now I'm curious. But ... it's still Fincher (zzzzz...) and about the Fbook guy.

Down With BDP

Buckshot w/ KRS-One - "Robot"
Glad to see KRS-One still working. Linked primarily for the auto-tune dis.

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Friday, July 10, 2009


Gropecunt Lane - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia: I wouldn't have linked this except I thought it hilarious that Jeeves (Stephen Fry) himself tweeted it. If you only follow one celeb, he's the man.
Update: Google Maps Mania follows up with some more puerile place names.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

My Hometown

Arrest Made In Connection With East Hartford Shooting - East Hartford, so much to answer for. The old hometown keeps making the news for all the wrong reasons. Murder on Tuesday followed up by a murder on Wednesday at the vigil for Tuesday's victim.

The Real Dream Team

UConn Reunion In Detroit: Pistons Add Gordon, Villanueva - Dream Team! If they could just find a way to pry Ray Allen away from the Celts to add to the mix ... they'd be unstoppable.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Doctor Who vs Eminem(?)

Doctor Who vs Eminem(?) - Regularly Irregular: Jon Pertwee's eyebrows steal the show. My new favorite mash-up.

Makes Me Think of Berkely Mews

Barclay Villa: We went to wedding at the beautiful Barclay Villa a few weeks ago. They quote a bit from Frederick Law Olmstead, who stayed there in the 1850s on their website, but they refer to the book they took the quote from as "Cotton Kingdom". When I tried to find a Google Books clip I was stumped at first, then found the text in "A Journey to the Seaboard Slave States in the Years 1853-1854".

If you check out the website, look for the Stop Audio link at the bottom right.

So Much to Answer For

NOVA | scienceNOW | Auto-Tune | PBS: The inventor of auto-tune shows how it works.

Silurians of Raleigh

Mysterious 'sewer creature' sparks curiosity ::

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