Friday, October 30, 2009

live posting/pic alert: Philly vs NY x2 this Sunday, Nov. 1!

For anyone who cares, is interested, or just plain bored to fucking tears...I will be posting some pics & thoughts on what I'm seeing, feeling, and thinking, this Sunday, Nov. 1st, directly from the South Philly sports complex, where I am lucky enough to be attending both the Eagles/Giants game in the AM, and also game #4 of the Phillies/Yankmees world series, in the PM. Tailgate for the football game begins prompty at 9:45AM. First post approximately 10:00AM. I'm planning on about one very small post per hour. Who knows what will actually happen. Happy Halloween All!

"Why We Love Philly"

A new friend of mine, Shawn Kilroy, made this sweet clip about why he - and we - love Philly. Check it out, Yo! - sj

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Prediction: Phillies in six.

I am a full-on Yankee-hater. I won't even predict a win for them against the Nationals. Choking is always an option.

There. I'm on the record. Wanks choke...Phillies in six.

Take that, Wankees!

Go Phils!

Prediction: Yankees in Six

There you go. I'm on record. Me not like Yankees at ALL, but there is
my objective opinion. Do I need to state, "I SO hope I'm wrong!?"

Go Philly!!!

Sent from my iPhone

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Fail Wankees! Go Phils!

I'm lovin' me some Wankee hate-fest here in Cleveburg. It's easy, even though CC will be on the mound. But, really, CC wouldn't have stuck around anyway. The sight of him in pinstripes is a first-degree, super-duper, extra-large, get-the-job-done barf fest.

C.P. Lee, that's our guy. A gamer. This guy came back from some seriously shitty performances and injuries and was lights out for a Cy Young even though his team sucked dirty canal water. We hated that he had to leave. We loved that he went to the Phils.

Ahh, the Phils. If there's any team a Clevelander can pull for in the senior circuit, it's the Phillies. Blue-collar, hard-luck, smile and smack-you-in-the-face-at-the-same time baseball. That's an American League style lineup you've got there. One through eight can hit the crap out of the ball any day.

So A-Roid has a "resurgence" in the playoffs. He's "exonerated".

He's an ass. Cliff, a little chin music please.



the Yankee hating continues!

Chip D. continues offering up tips, reasons and pointers on Yankee-hating, based on three decades of oft-bitter experience! Tune in all week for more! - sj

Reason #4: Joba Chamberlain

Only in the Bronx does a bean-balling sack of excuses get the "First Name Only" treatment. Chamberlain may learn to harness that 100 mph fastball. He may go on to be the next Mariano or the next Roger. But right now, he's a kid with half a year as a promising setup guy who has failed to transition to the rotation. This does not stop the Yankees's relentless PR machine -- known as the national baseball media -- from promulgating nonsense that leads to barbarities like the phrase "Joba Rules." For the love of Allah! Every Little Leaguer is on a pitch count -- how does Chamberlain's rate its own special, precious little name?

Speaking of Allah, it should also be clear that the heavens no longer smile upon -- or, more like it, chose to overlook -- the Yankees's shenanigans. The celestial signs have been bad for New York baseball since the yawn-fest World Series of 2000. But two particular omens suggest that, these days, finally, Whom The Gods Would Destroy, They First Put In Pinstripes. First, on the night of the Red Sox championship-clinching game of 2004 (exactly five years ago today), there was a lunar eclipse that turned the full moon Red Sox-red. This omen provided not just the almighty imprimatur on the Sox victory, but signaled that the higher powers were again giving adult supervision to MLB post-season results. The White Sox victory in 2005 -- also extinguishing a unreasonably long drought -- and the Phillies' triumph of 2008 continued the string of mercifully Yankee-free World Series. However, no clearer sign of divine displeasure has ever shown itself than in Game Two of the 2007 divisional series, Yanks vs. Indians, Yanks up 1-0 in the eighth, Chamberlain on the mound. Suddenly, a swarm of bugs -- midges -- descended on Chamberlain's neck. He lost his concentration, walked Grady Sizemore, threw a couple of wild pitches -- the second scoring Sizemore -- and the Indians went on to win the game and the series.

As with A-Rod, the failures and disappointments of Chamberlain do not give me joy on any personal level. On another team, in another city, this hard-throwing young man with the confused, hard-scrabble personal life might be an object of sympathy, even admiration. He might be Zack Greinke if he pitched in Kansas City. But most people don't even know who Zack Greinke is, much less his story -- and the national press sure as hell doesn't call him "Zack." Rather, Chamberlain is -- and by a justice larger than all of us ought to remain -- just another guy on the team on whom the midges descend.

Monday, October 26, 2009

'tis the season for yankee-hating! Chip D. supplies the road map!

Chip D. offers up tips, reasons and pointers on Yankee-hating, based on three decades of oft-bitter experience! Tips (or are they reasons?) #2 and #3 below! Tune in all week for more! - sj

Tip #2: The "New" Yankee Stadium

Let's imagine the Vatican choosing to demolish St. Peter's because there were too few luxury pews. That's what the Steinbrenners happily did to baseball's St. Peter's. Then they made the old right field dimensions even sillier -- imagine reducing the number of Commandments from 10 to eight in order to make Sunday services more thrilling to the casual worshipper.

Weren't you pleased in April when the Yankees couldn't move their $2000 per game seats? Weren't you hoping that there was at least one Wall Street kleptocrat using his last shred of decency to resist purchasing those seats when the Yankees dropped the price to a more recession-friendly $1000? Doesn't anyone in New York find this temple of vanity to be a insult and desecration to baseball fans everywhere -- which is to ask, are there no baseball fans left in New York?

It is entirely fitting that the fidelity-challenged Rudy Giuliani attends, and gets himself photographed, at every home game.

Tip #3: Alex Rodriguez

Remember the 2000 Seattle Mariners? They were under-achievers, finishing second in the AL West with only 91 wins, despite the gaudy numbers of their free-agent-to-be shortstop, the 24-year old Alex Rodriguez. He hit 41 homers, drove in 132 runs, walked 100 times -- then left for the Texas Rangers and a quarter-billion dollar contract. However, the Mariners not only improved, but improved by 25 games! The 2001 Mariners racked up 116 wins. The only thing they had in common with their former-All Star was a knack for disappering in October. The Mariners spit up the ALCS to the Yankees that year, 4 games to 1. Randy Johnson, instead, became the former Mariner to take out the Yankees that year, teaming up with fellow Yankee-killer Curt Schilling to deprive the Bronx Bombers of their apparent birthright -- a fourth straight World Series title. Neither the Yankees nor A-Rod have won the World Series since.

Their fates became entwined. A-Rod wearied playing in front of lackluster crowds in a baseball backwater. He yearned for the big time, when he wasn't experimenting with steroids. The hollow, empty numbers bored even the guy putting them up. He joined the Yankees in 2004 where he became the bewildered face of a muscle-bound team. Jason Varitek kicked his butt when he whined about getting hit by a pitch -- "We don't throw at .240 hitters," Tek said to the slumping Rodriguez. In the post-season, he led the Yankees to the most embarassing October collapse in baseball history when the Red Sox came back from a 3-0 deficit to win the ALCS in seven. The picture of A-Rod girly-slapping the ball from Bronson Arroyo's hand became the icon of this defeat.

His fall from grace even lacks the gravity of tragedy. Rather, it is comedy or farce -- passing out during his wife's delivery of their child, later his abandonment of that wife for (wait for it…) Madonna, still later the admission of steriod use. I take no joy in this tale: for a moment in the late 90s, it seemed we were watching the blossoming of the greatest player of our time. During the moronic homerun derbies fueled by Barry Bonds and Mark McGwire, one had to hope that 1) A-Rod was clean and 2) he would render their phony records moot. Instead, like Bonds, he has become the joyless warehouser of statistical trivia, the unlovable butt of late-night jokes, the befuddled celeb on the back page of the tabloids. In short, he has become the appropriate face of this decade's New York Yankees. In a just universe, the drought for both would continue.

Tips & Pointers on Yankee-Hating!

"I know I'm unloveable; you don't have to tell me.
Oh, message received; loud and clear.
...I wear black on the outside,
because black is how I feel on the inside." - Unloveable, by the Smiths.

My friend Chip D., a hardcore BoSox fan, offers up tips and pointers on Yankee-hating, based on three decades of oft-bitter experience! Stay tuned for more, hopefully! - sj

Tip/Point #1
They spent half a billion dollars to buy this year's pennant. Sabathia, Teixeira, and Burnett collected $500M in contracts last off-season. Remind Yankee fans that their team is a collection of mercenaries owned by a ruthless convicted felon. Envision your joy if - when! - the Phillies defeat them - like Washington bravely crossing the Delaware to take out that frat-party of complacent Hessians.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

It's Decorative Gourd Season, Motherfuckers

funniest thing I've read recently. go here for original piece and website. - sj

We're rolling out deal after deal in celebration of the harvest. Check our store daily for this cornucopia of cheap books.

It's Decorative Gourd Season, Motherfuckers
by Colin Nissan

I don't know about you, but I can't wait to get my hands on some fucking gourds and arrange them in a horn-shaped basket on my dining room table. That shit is going to look so seasonal. I'm about to head up to the attic right now to find that wicker fucker, dust it off, and jam it with an insanely ornate assortment of shellacked vegetables. When my guests come over it's gonna be like, BLAMMO! Check out my shellacked decorative vegetables, assholes. Guess what season it is—fucking fall. There's a nip in the air and my house is full of mutant fucking squash.

I may even throw some multi-colored leaves into the mix, all haphazard like a crisp October breeze just blew through and fucked that shit up. Then I'm going to get to work on making a beautiful fucking gourd necklace for myself. People are going to be like, "Aren't those gourds straining your neck?" And I'm just going to thread another gourd onto my necklace without breaking their gaze and quietly reply, "It's fall, fuckfaces. You're either ready to reap this freaky-assed harvest or you're not."

Carving orange pumpkins sounds like a pretty fitting way to ring in the season. You know what else does? Performing a all-gourd reenactment of an episode of Different Strokes—specifically the one when Arnold and Dudley experience a disturbing brush with sexual molestation. Well, this shit just got real, didn't it? Felonies and gourds have one very important commonality: they're both extremely fucking real. Sorry if that's upsetting, but I'm not doing you any favors by shielding you from this anymore.

The next thing I'm going to do is carve one of the longer gourds into a perfect replica of the Mayflower as a shout-out to our Pilgrim forefathers. Then I'm going to do lines of blow off its hull with a hooker. Why? Because it's not summer, it's not winter, and it's not spring. Grab a calendar and pull your fucking heads out of your asses; it's fall, fuckers.

Have you ever been in an Italian deli with salamis hanging from their ceiling? Well then you're going to fucking love my house. Just look where you're walking or you'll get KO'd by the gauntlet of misshapen, zucchini-descendant bastards swinging from above. And when you do, you're going to hear a very loud, very stereotypical Italian laugh coming from me. Consider yourself warned.

For now, all I plan to do is to throw on a flannel shirt, some tattered overalls, and a floppy fucking hat and stand in the middle of a cornfield for a few days. The first crow that tries to land on me is going to get his avian ass bitch-slapped all the way back to summer.

Welcome to autumn, fuckheads!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Cole's Woes

Cole’s Woes

“…count all the fingers and the toes; now I suppose you hope the little black boy grows…” I can’t help but think of that line & hook from Pete Rock & Cl Smooth’s “They Reminisce Over You (T.R.O.Y)", as I convey these thoughts…

Folks, here's what's going on w/ Cole Hamels, and I'm fairly sure he's going to be battling this throughout the World Series.

He's a brand new, first-time dad. He's tired. He's tired physically; he's tired mentally. You can see it on his face, you can see it in his pitching. You can see it in his interactions with Carlos Ruiz. And It couldn't have been more obvious than when, during last night’s game, with the Phillies just outs away from their second consecutive World Series appearance, the camera cut to him in the dugout, a headshot, and he wasn't really there. His face was a 1,000-yard stare, looking well past the action on the field. He was somewhere else.

You know where he was? Home. Trying to stay afloat in the ocean of chaos and love that a newborn baby brings (son Caleb was born Oct. 9th, not even two weeks ago). He was back at home, wrestling with exhaustion, communicating with his wife, Heidi, perhaps trying to listen to her fun anecdotes about what he's been missing, her frustrations and difficulties with “normal,” new-baby stuff, and perhaps even trying to get along with his mom-in-law, for all I know (if she's there, lending a hand)!

I don't know much about their new baby. I don't know if there is anything abnormal, or complex going on (which can make things even tougher). But even the “usual,” "normal," and "baby-and-mom-are-fine" situation, is extremely difficult, the first few weeks, for everyone involved. There is a lot to stay on top of, lose sleep over, and just plain manage. Including emotions. Heavy ones.

I've been around the world, was a Special Forces Marine (and Desert Storm Vet), and experienced a lot of hardcore, crazy things and difficult times in my life. And you know, when it came to the days and weeks immediately following the birth of my first child, it was all I could do to survive – seriously! And our baby was perfect, by the way! It is an extremely difficult time. Exasperating, and every once and a while, things truly seem futile.

Parents know what I'm talking about. Kid-less folks, er…not so much. I won’t begin to get into everything that goes on the first few weeks a first-born is brought into the world, for those who don't have children, but suffice it to say: you are toast. Burnt toast. Mentally, physically. There are times, when you're just like, "holy &^%#, how the hell am I going to make it?!" “Is THIS what this is?!” When you really do feel, “somehow, I have to survive.”

Cole is wearing these precise emotions on his face. It was crystal clear last night when the camera showed him in the dugout. He was more alert in his post-game interviews, and he had to be: he knew the cameras were on him, and he “snapped to it” with relative ease. But I could still see it gurgling underneath.

If this were his second child, it would be easier on him. You learn tons. You learn how to deal. You’ve learned that you can actually survive it all. Your spouse learns these things as well, and if this were their second child, both of them would be more well equipped to handle everything; the interaction and communications between new parents aren't as daunting; caring for baby is less difficult (though still hard). The global task is a bit easier. But, alas, that's not the case here.

In case you’re wondering, here are Cole’s stats from his last three starts (all post-season):

Game #2, Colorado Series (Phillies lost), when his wife went into labor either just before he took the mound, or once the game had started (he was told as much, after being pulled and headed straight for the hospital):

5 innings pitched, gave up 7 hits (1 homer), 4 runs, 5 strikeouts, with a 7.2 era.

Game #1, Dodgers Series (Phillies won, Cole got the win):

5.1 innings pitched, gave up 8 hits (2 homers), 4 runs, 4 strikeouts, with an era of 7.

Game # 5, Dodgers Series (Phillies clinch World Series Birth):

4.1 innings pitched, gave up 5 hits (3 homers), 3 runs, 3 strikeouts, with an era of 6.75.

Here are his post-season stats combined:

3 starts, 14.2 innings pitched, 6.75 ERA, 12 strikeouts, 20 hits (6 homers), and 41 total bases given up.

Good “enough?” Nope. Not with an impending World Series featuring the Yankees looming.

Sure, these three recent outings and set of stats point to Hamel’s struggles right now, but they aren’t necessary to deduce why his on-field performance is suffering: He’s a first-time dad, and husband of a first time mom. It’s a lot to deal with. Seriously. Simultaneously he’s dealing with the big-time, front-and-center pressures, of trying to steer his baseball team through two post-season series, and on-deck, the minefield of one of the best Yankees teams in recent memory, and a second consecutive World Series title.

You can just see it in him. He’s detached. He hasn’t been in the moment. He hasn’t had his head in the game. And it’s quite understandable, why. The implications, moving forward, are fairly big. And the question is this: can he somehow find a way to leave his awesome new family behind, when he heads to the ballpark?

He’s got a few days off to figure it out. Because in less than a week, one day before Caleb’s three-week birthday, he’ll be taking the mound (presumably) to start game #2 at Yankees Stadium in the World Series.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

miscellaneous thoughts..

"Some of my best friends are yankees fans!" Look, I don't "love to hate the Yankees," or as I often call them, the Yankmees. I know a lot of people who hate the yankees. tons. none of them "love to hate the yankees," or "like to hate the yankees." Who "likes" to hate something? We would simply prefer the yankees go away and to never hear about them again. I don't like their arrogant players, I don't like their big, sloppy egos; I don't care which celebrities they're screwing, and so on. do I need to say this? I don't like their talent or their century of winning championships either. By and large, I find their fans equally annoying. Yes, I have plenty of friends who are diehard yankees fans. I don't find them annoying; they're my friends. but most yankee fans I meet throughout NY, America and the world, are annoying asses. that's just what I find. I take no pleasure whatsoever in immensely disliking the Yankmees and their fans. It hurts a little actually. And let's be honest, part of the hurt, comes from realizing that Yankee fans, do, to some extent, get a little joy out of knowing how much us 'haters' despise them and their team.

Fergie, singer from Black Eyed Peas, with the terrible voice and excellent figure must've just recently, gotten a lot of work done to her face. I saw her on one of the new Direct TV ads, and didn't even realize it was her at first (until I heard her singing). She doesn't look right in the face, yo.

The movie Anchorman. Look, people, I was underwhelmed the first time I watched it. But I have never, in my life, seen a movie, that got SO much better and funnier, w/ repeated viewings. And there are MANY hilarious scenes in that movie. They just went by me the first viewing, due to the seriously quirky schtick of Will Farrell, and the entire premise of the movie, and the fact that there are bad jokes scattered throughout, that the writers should've either kept out completely, or edited much better. But there are lots of comedies like that recently. Tropic Thunder comes to mind. There are def stupid - and nothing more - jokes in both of these movies; but they really do pale in comparison to the perfect blend of witty/absurd/hilarious jokes and scenes that dominate these movies. I've had this discussion before w/ people, and I can tell you, I am not the first to bring up the 'repeated viewing = way funnier' concept with regards to viewing Anchoman. Same thing happens w/ Big Lebowski (ALL Coen Bros. movies, for that matter). Watch it again. Let me know if I'm wrong.

Oh, one last thing: could republicans be any worse Americans?

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Rape-Nuts: John Stewart takes on the 30 GOP Senators who voted against Franken rape amendment

The Daily Show With Jon StewartMon - Thurs 11p / 10c
Daily Show
Full Episodes
Political HumorRon Paul Interview

In 2005, Jamie Leigh Jones was gang-raped by her Halliburton/KBR co-workers while working in Iraq and locked in a shipping container for over a day to prevent her from reporting her attack. The rape occurred outside of U.S. criminal jurisdiction, but to add serious insult to serious injury she was not allowed to sue KBR because her employment contract said that sexual assault allegations would only be heard in private arbitration--a process that overwhelmingly favors corporations.

This year, Sen. Al Franken (D-MN) proposed an amendment that would deny defense contracts

click here for rest of great piece, as well as informative links within article.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Rachel Maddow nails it: Obama's Nobel Prize

The conservative hysteria: call it "Obama Derangement Syndrome." As Rep. Grayson said, if President Obama had a BLT for lunch, the Rethugs would try to ban bacon out of spite.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Naked, Sore, Bruised and Bleeding: Alleged U.S. Contractor Rape Victim Fights for Day in Court

Naked, Sore, Bruised and Bleeding: Alleged U.S. Contractor Rape Victim Fights for Day in Court
Senate Passes Amendment to Stop Contractors From Forcing Employees into Arbitration
by: John R. Parkinson
ABC News
Oct. 7th, 2009

Jamie Leigh Jones was a 20-year-old young woman working her fourth day on the job in Baghdad for contractor Halliburton/KBR in 2005, when she says she was drugged and gang-raped by seven U.S contractors and held captive by two KBR guards in a shipping container. But more than four years after the alleged crimes occurred, Jones is still waiting for her day in court because when she signed her employment contract, she lost her rights to a jury trial and, instead, was forced into having her claims decided through secret, binding arbitration.

Today, the Senate listened to her story before approving an amendment by a vote of 68-30 that would prohibit "the Defense Department from contracting with companies that require employees to resolve sexual assault allegations and other claims through arbitration."

"I didn't even know that I had signed such a clause, but even if I had known, I would never have guessed that it would prevent me from bringing my claims to court after being brutally sexually harassed and assaulted," Jones, who told her story to ABC News' Chief Investigative Correspondent Brian Ross in an award-winning 20/20 story, testified at the Senate committee meeting on the issue. "I had no idea that the clause was part of the contract, what the clause actually meant, or that I would eventually end up in this horrible situation."

read rest of insane, tragic and almost-unbelievable story here