Al's Ramblings

Sunday, February 28, 2010

(2/28/2010 10:14:00 PM) - Al

The idea this is a surprise...still, is just astounding. They still seem to have no idea of the anger and disgust that is apparent and growing anywhere outside of the very liberal Northeast and California...which I realize is where the major media markets are, but it just reeks of lazy, out of touch reporting.

A little over a year ago, Obama had a +30 approval rating, and now, despite the fawning over of the networks, is now about a -20...I can't believe the candidates haven't been more blunt telling him to stay away.

2/28/2010 10:14:00 PM

(2/28/2010 10:01:00 PM) - Al

The death toll is rising in Chile.

I hate to bring common sense into it, especially with the old media involved, but surely it is understood the death toll cannot go down, right?

2/28/2010 10:01:00 PM

(2/28/2010 08:16:00 PM) - Al

The Bucks lose tonight in OT, but still a wonderful road trip of 2-1. I just recalled they are playing a man short, only 14 men on the roster, and Redd/Gadzuric have been unable to go.

I hate to see anyone a player short just out of respect for the game, and for all the guys playing in the NBDL and Europe... though I'm sure the Bucks are losing millions this year, and they likely have little use for another practice body. That said, I could certainly see them in dire need of a guy who can play the 3/4 in case of injury. Score some, rebound some, and defend. Because many of the players in the NBDL tends to be undersized, you'd think it'd be relatively easy to find a 6-4 through 6-8 athlete who can fit the bill.

EDIT: David Noel actually played for the Bucks a while back, and may be an example of the type of player they could use.

2/28/2010 08:16:00 PM

(2/28/2010 05:30:00 PM) - Al

OK, back to not caring about hockey for another four years.--Gleeman on Twitter

Heh. Me too.

I recall when the Bradley Center was built, it was to attract an NHL team. Now, obviously the BC is far too outdated to ever be considered, and as I hinted earlier, I feel the MLS will be a more respected league in a decade, if not sooner (however, it may not "out gross" the NHL by then. I'd love to see MIL get an MLS team as well, as I don't think soccer would compete with the Bucks and Brewers (and to a lesser extent, the Warriors, Panthers, Wave, and Admirals) nearly as much for the entertainment dollar...also, the large Polish and German population in Milwaukee would assist as the team was building a following.

Of course, the idea of the city being involved in getting a soccer only stadium built (required for MLS) pretty much nullifies the mere thought.

2/28/2010 05:30:00 PM

(2/28/2010 04:36:00 PM) - Al

I'm sure there are some folks hoping the NHL gets a bump from the Olympic hockey...not gonna happen folks. The NHL is closer to MLS than the NBA...far closer.

2/28/2010 04:36:00 PM

(2/28/2010 02:46:00 PM) - Al

Sharon Osbourne gives parenting advice.

There's just too many punchlines, I'll let you choose one yourself.

2/28/2010 02:46:00 PM

(2/28/2010 02:10:00 PM) - Al

I'll take Stealing from the Taxpayer for $1000, Alex.

The sad thing is, those public sector jobs all have lavish benefits and pay packages, but it does not stop the abuse from taking place.

One thing I often say to myself, when things may not be going swimmingly, is:

You can't help but prosper, when the streets are paved with gold--Jon Bon Jovi, great 21st century poet

Not many of us have ever found gold laden streets, so we work our way up from the bottom...part-time storeroom guy to store manager, for example. Sadly, those who work the government live in another filled with a plethora of three day weekends, seemingly unlimited benefits, and barely any risk of downsizing.

I guess in reality, the streets are paved with gold in the private sector. A failure to see that makes any complaints appear to be sour grapes.

2/28/2010 02:10:00 PM

(2/28/2010 02:02:00 PM) - Al

The old media is ignoring the fact Obama showed he does not understand the simplest form of insurance...and he used to be a law professor.

This is why he keeps complaining about huge insurance profits as well...he seems to lack a basic understanding that businesses that do not make money are not in business long.

The Ivy League folks simply do not get how the real world works. They've never met a payroll, they've never went to a loan officer and pleaded for more time or more money...they just are clueless.

I'm sorry, when you don't understand collision insurance, it's no wonder you don't grasp the concept of job creation and balancing a budget.

2/28/2010 02:02:00 PM

(2/28/2010 01:55:00 PM) - Al

Charles Payne is a self-made man, who spoke at a tea party last summer, and summed up the American dream in less than 4 minutes. You can listen to him talking about growing up in the projects of Harlem, and now running his own investment firm (just like Chris Darden did, in The Pursuit of Happyness) here.

This is a guy that needs to be a part of the next Republican administration.

2/28/2010 01:55:00 PM

(2/28/2010 12:49:00 PM) - Al

The Hugs Project is asking for your vote, as they can receive $50K to make the troops more comfortable as they defend our interests with honor and with no hesitation to destroy evil.

Voting ends today, so donate a couple minutes of your time. While you're there, read what they do and see if you can help with your time, money, or as a project for your group.

2/28/2010 12:49:00 PM

(2/28/2010 11:44:00 AM) - Al

SF report on the Giants still being unhappy about the HR celebration last year.

Heh. They should worry about preventing them, and not the results. To be realistic, probably only a few fellas, 3-4 at most, were upset about it, but whenever you have a group, the leaders just tend to be the ones who keep repeating themselves.

2/28/2010 11:44:00 AM

Saturday, February 27, 2010

(2/27/2010 11:42:00 PM) - Al

The Rambling son and I just decided that we'd be far more likely to watch Olympic skating if:

1. Part of the required elements included the skaters slamming into each other at full speed.

2. When the gal spins around several times, she throws up.

3. When the guy throws the girl into the air, he fires her towards the hockey net at the other end...and another team has to stop her before she slides in. Considering most pairs tip the scales at about a buck eighty (combined), that would be fun to watch.

4. Also, at the end of the luge/bobsled run, they should put a big ramp at the bottom and see how many monster trucks those fellas can clear.

On that same note, apparently, bobsled driver is a possible athletic endeavor for both Kevin Smith or myself. Hey, I'm not one to pick on someone for carrying a few extra pounds...

Just sayin'...

2/27/2010 11:42:00 PM

(2/27/2010 11:09:00 PM) - Al

One more thing to apologize for.

The French, if possible, are going to love him even more.

2/27/2010 11:09:00 PM

(2/27/2010 08:59:00 PM) - Al

We also wonder why the male skaters have to wear formal attire when they perform...they might be able to jump higher and stuff if they didn't have to worry about splitting their pants.

2/27/2010 08:59:00 PM

(2/27/2010 04:52:00 PM) - Al

95K tickets sold in the first six hours, which the Brewers use as their guideline for the first day. About 10% down from last year, which makes perfect sense.

2/27/2010 04:52:00 PM

(2/27/2010 04:46:00 PM) - Al

Mark Cuban makes Al Franken look every bit as ignorant as he is.

2/27/2010 04:46:00 PM

(2/27/2010 03:45:00 PM) - Al

I have to imagine a job at the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center has to be one of the most relaxing there is all but about 3-4 days a year.

Thus far, it has been a huge letdown in Hawaii, as cameras have been showing lazy waves for 45 minutes. Great for homes and businesses along the coast, but when they have trouble forecasting when and how high the water will be, feeling comfortable about predictions about the planet warming and cooling over the last few centuries is laughable.

2/27/2010 03:45:00 PM

(2/27/2010 03:43:00 PM) - Al

Tom H tweets that Doug and Mark A met for several hours today, putting the finishing touches on how much and how long the eventual offer to Prince will be.

2/27/2010 03:43:00 PM

(2/27/2010 03:08:00 PM) - Al

Check out this Newsweek piece from 1995...why the internet will fail.

We'll be laughing at climate change dire predictions in a decade or two as well. Let's not forget the end of the world, canned food and generator sales when the calendar switched over to 2000...

2/27/2010 03:08:00 PM

(2/27/2010 03:00:00 PM) - Al

Every time you see some scribe like Rosenthal picking on players who may have done something less than superb, take a gander at this piece of garbage he put together, trying to fix a problem that doesn't exist.

Painfully bad, and every single "solution" is cringe worthy, far worse than any problem with the current set-up.

2/27/2010 03:00:00 PM

(2/27/2010 02:02:00 PM) - Al

The Bucks play at 2:20 this afternoon on FSN...I can't recall a previous Saturday afternoon telecast ever.

2/27/2010 02:02:00 PM

(2/27/2010 01:54:00 PM) - Al

Marie Osmond's son commits suicide. HS honor student, what a waste.

2/27/2010 01:54:00 PM

(2/27/2010 11:00:00 AM) - Al

Brewers' single game tickets on sale in 3-2-1...

Good luck if you are waiting in the virtual line (or "on line" if you are in line in the Northeast and too stupid to know the language).

EDIT: If you were at Miller Park this AM or online, shoot me an e-mail and tell me how things went.

UPDATE: Not only is Opening Day a sellout, Saturday, 4/24 versus the Cubs no longer has seats available, online at least.

I got an e-mail from one fan who was going to go buy tickets at MP this AM, but had to be at work at 11, and the line looked too long to wait. I find it shocking in this day and age people do this, but if you are buying many tickets, you save $3-5 per in fees buying them at the box office, so I suppose that's a big deal if you are getting, say 50-100 in bunches of 2's and 4's.

UPDATE: Saturday, 5/15, a day game versus PHIL, scheduled for broadcast on Fox, is now a sellout, SRO only available online. That seems like an odd game to sell out, being it is so early, but I would guess lots of people are making that their first game, and the afternoon start allows for family tailgating and evening travel home, both important for some fans.

I'd have to think 3 virtual sellouts by 2PM of day one of individual sales is a record of sorts.

UPDATE: Last year, they sold 104K tickets, and 5 games were all but sold out at the end of the day, with "limited availability" for a few other games. I remember thinking a few days they'd likely sell more this year...but can't recall why I thought that...maybe because I figured season tiks were down a tad due to the lack of playoff deposits, though that seems underwhelming.

2/27/2010 11:00:00 AM

(2/27/2010 09:24:00 AM) - Al

Congrats to Kevin Smith, who may be weight challenged, but is about to obliterate his previous high grossing movie, as Cop Out is going to do $18-20M this weekend. Granted, the budget is likely far bigger than he's had before, but still.

2/27/2010 09:24:00 AM

(2/27/2010 09:10:00 AM) - Al

How big is the 8.8 earthquake in Chile...Hawaii'd entire coastline is being evacuated (looking at the maps, it looks like about a mile inland), as tsunami waves are expected to hit this afternoon...8600 miles away.

I blame W, and climate change, of course.

2/27/2010 09:10:00 AM

(2/27/2010 12:24:00 AM) - Al

SI thinks the Bucks are set up for success after '11...given how few players may wish to come to MIL as FA's, they may well be active trading the expiring contracts of Redd and Gadzuric for younger talent as early as this offseason.

2/27/2010 12:24:00 AM

Friday, February 26, 2010

(2/26/2010 11:14:00 PM) - Al

I like Iribarren for what he is, but his OPS at AAA was similar to Escobar, and Hernan is 25. I just don't see much of a ceiling.

2/26/2010 11:14:00 PM

(2/26/2010 09:42:00 PM) - Al

Allow me to chuckle at the unoriginal name of the "coffee party", which doesn't even know what it stands for, except it doesn't like the tea party people.

Lotsa luck with that.

2/26/2010 09:42:00 PM

(2/26/2010 09:21:00 PM) - Al

What's astounding is Charlie Sheen can go into rehab, and the question is, which of his dozen vices he is seeking help for.

2/26/2010 09:21:00 PM

(2/26/2010 08:21:00 PM) - Al

Felipe Lopez signs with SL, sounds like 1y/$1.75M...once again, all the casuals that thought Doug should have offered him arby find out why he is the GM, and they are clueless.

I know the Rambling brother asked if the Crew could get him for similar money, but as I said then, with Counsell and Gamel in reserve now, they have better places to spend the cash, and also do not want an unhappy guy on the bench.

2/26/2010 08:21:00 PM

(2/26/2010 06:57:00 PM) - Al

I watched zero of the health care summit, but have heard nothing but kudos for Paul Ryan, a congressman from WI, whose plain talk recap looked to have left Obama wishing he had never done this.

I have heard for ages Ryan has a very good plan, that involves free market solutions and no government involvement (I know, who would want that?), but admittedly, am too busy playing multiple online tournaments to google and read. Just watching that clip, I'd say he's brilliant and deserves the accolades.

EDIT: Ryan's own page...I find it funny there's about 100 times the info here than Obama ever gave out before he was elected...and not a single catch phrase like "hope and change", just, you know, facts, figures, and plans.

2/26/2010 06:57:00 PM

(2/26/2010 06:03:00 PM) - Al

Too funny! There is ONE white male dealer in the room and his name tag literally says: TOKEN--Daniel Negraneau on Twitter

At the risk of being labeled racist, I thought that was pretty funny.

2/26/2010 06:03:00 PM

(2/26/2010 10:24:00 AM) - Al

Apparently, we have found the perfect job for Joe Biden.

2/26/2010 10:24:00 AM

Thursday, February 25, 2010

(2/25/2010 05:40:00 PM) - Al

Now I'm not saying he hits a ton of balls down, but he does it enough that his average should be higher, and there isn't going to be a huge emphasis on him getting the ball down when he talks with Sveum because he's at least satisfactory for now.--Tony Witrado

I've read this a half-dozen times today, as Tony tried to describe Carlos Gomez's hitting style. It may be the poorest attempt at clear, easy to understand prose in the history of old media.

I'd say he was a pathetic sportswriter, but I wouldn't want to offend pathetic sportswriters.

2/25/2010 05:40:00 PM

(2/25/2010 02:15:00 PM) - Al

If there was prison time for saying mean stuff to John McCain, Obama would be doing life.

He's totally helpless without a teleprompter, isn't he?

It will be interesting to see if that quote makes it on the evening news tonight, as it seems apparent the public saw it as an extremely rude remark.

2/25/2010 02:15:00 PM

(2/25/2010 01:51:00 PM) - Al asks me to share this link, and I was so happy to do so, I didn't even ask to be compensated.

2/25/2010 01:51:00 PM

(2/25/2010 12:39:00 PM) - Al

At age 22, men graduate from college barely half as much as women.

I would say while they are more likely to use the GI Bill, and/or take a year or two off to work, they are also far more likely to spend a lot of time partying and not studying, meaning they take far longer to get through than women.

I also recall when I worked at the pizza place, guys would say how summer classes were 80-90% female. I think women want to get done, move onto a career, and in the back of their minds, are already planning on moving onto starting a family. Meanwhile, most young guys think a long-term plan is what to get for dinner tonight.

2/25/2010 12:39:00 PM

(2/25/2010 12:09:00 PM) - Al

Remember when health care (Medicaid expansion, but that does not fit the narrative) had to be passed before Xmas?

Apparently, when Obama speaks, time stands still. Hence, if he would have kept speaking, I guess Xmas would have never come...

2/25/2010 12:09:00 PM

(2/25/2010 12:04:00 PM) - Al

Maybe Hank Reid was onto something about unemployed men and domestic violence.

No offense to Johnny Edwards (as if you can be rougher on him than real life), but he's a few drinks and walking around shirtless from a cameo on Cops.

2/25/2010 12:04:00 PM

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

(2/24/2010 11:31:00 PM) - Al

Tonight, I lost with AA after a flop of A/Q/4. All the chips went in at this point. A 8 came on the turn, followed by a...

9. Silly me, when I saw the JT, I was only worried about a K.

Of course, which is why playing poker is clearly a game of skill.:)

I know a couple of you are thinking, why would anyone go all-in with a gutshot? Someone asked that in the chat...he replied....

it worked didn't it?

The pain, I can't stand the pain....

2/24/2010 11:31:00 PM

(2/24/2010 09:20:00 PM) - Al

136 Brewers' games on word of any WMLW broadcasts as of yet, which have always been on FSN-WI outside of Milwaukee.

All games are in HD, which means something to those in the 21st century...

UPDATE: Bob W says 15 games are on WMLW, and FSN-WI outside Milwaukee.

I had an e-mail that said FSN carried 140 or more last year, but with 6 on national TV and Bucks' commitments, 136 was likely the max. That makes 157 of 162 available, so any complaints are laughable.

My minor complaint with FSN-WI is that they've made no effort to brand themselves a bit more, putting on some Timber Rattlers affairs, and maybe even a few Sounds' games (that's the AAA Nashville team), which I would have liked to see last year, as I had been hearing about Escobar for ages.

I'd happily settle for Sunday evenings (minor league teams often play Sunday late afternoon or evenings, and to be honest, it's not like a tape-delayed broadcast would be damaged, as ESPN does not show those highlights) and days when the big boys have off (they often replay the day game at night, which is cost effective and good for me, so I don't mind that).

2/24/2010 09:20:00 PM

(2/24/2010 08:51:00 PM) - Al

Tim Dillard is a guy with a chance to make this Brewers bullpen out of spring training--Tony W, JS

Good to see TW return with his regular contribution of awkward English, cliches, and making a story where one does not exist.

Granted, anyone in camp has "a chance" to make the team, but considering Dillard is not even on the 40 man (granted I doubt TW knows this) and is coming off a crappy year in AAA, I have Dillard at about 27th of the 32 arms in Maryvale right now. He needs to go down to Nashville, miss some bats, and work his way back into the equation.

2/24/2010 08:51:00 PM

(2/24/2010 07:21:00 PM) - Al

TMJ with a newsy talk with Doug.

REading between the lines a tad, I think Gamel will be starting somewhere, at one of the INF or OF corners, by '11 at the latest. It doesn't take much imagination (a Fielder, Weeks or McGehee injury...or maybe Braun or Hart) to put him in the everyday (or at least a platoon) lineup in '10.

2/24/2010 07:21:00 PM

(2/24/2010 06:41:00 PM) - Al

I can't say I've seen a minute of Joy Behar's show, but, and I can't imagine ever even thinking may be worse than Olbermann.

2/24/2010 06:41:00 PM

(2/24/2010 05:48:00 PM) - Al

Loe and Narveson have looked good so far.

I'd say that if Chris pitches decently in March, he'll be on the team in April...he simply pitched too well last September (and hits 90+ on the gun with his left arm) to lose for nothing come Opening Day, as he has no options and would never clear waivers, unless he gets lit up in the Cactus League.

I talked about Loe when he was signed...he has had a very good career outside of Arlington, and last I checked, the Brewers don't have any games there. I wouldn't bet a nickel for a dollar on any longshot to make the pitching staff, but if I had to choose someone, it'd be Loe (my 2nd choice, another boring name, Chris Smith).

2/24/2010 05:48:00 PM

(2/24/2010 11:05:00 AM) - Al

Capuano sounds healthy, ready to prove himself in the minors.

2/24/2010 11:05:00 AM

(2/24/2010 10:44:00 AM) - Al

I have discussed the Rambling dog's hearing loss a few times of late. In the last couple months, the Rambling wife and myself have noticed that he has much more luck "hearing" you if you are looking at him and enunciate it very clearly...I just let him out and said "outside" as I was walking to the door, and he remained seated on the chair, oblivious. I then said "out-side" and he jumped down and sprinted to the door.

We joke about it, but it's canine lip reading. We're lucky he's adapting as well as he is.

2/24/2010 10:44:00 AM

(2/24/2010 09:24:00 AM) - Al

The epitome of politics as usual.

I'm telling ya, these guys need to keep a spiral notebook with what they said so they quite looking like hypocrites every other day.

2/24/2010 09:24:00 AM

(2/24/2010 08:43:00 AM) - Robert R.

New movie review based on a preview screening.

North Face (Nordwand)

The German mountain climbing movie (aka the "bergfilm") used to be a big deal worldwide. Essentially created by Dr. Arnold Fanck in the 1920s, who spent years getting great nature shots of ice covered peaks. (And made a fortune in its use as stock footage later.) The mountain film in the 1920s had some of the same basic appeal as LAWRENCE OF ARABIA, showing the world exotic locations that they would most likely never visit. Today that's accomplished inside a computer for movies like AVATAR. It also had the basic appeal of a story of man vs. nature and often featured a cosmopolitan female love interest, an aviatrix for instance, who eventually is brought back to the simpler Bavarian ways through the courage of the men she witnesses. Prominent bergfilms are THE HOLY MOUNTAIN and WHITE HELL ON THE PITZ PALU, notably referenced in INGLOURIOUS BASTERDS.

Although the genre had essentially apolitical origins, it eventually fell into being associated with the Nazis. Primarily because Leni Riefenstahl was a big star of them. Secondly, because the idea of a German man trying to conquer a seemingly impossible task and look down on the rest of the world had obvious symbolism. Obviously mountain climbing films haven't disappeared, modern examples include CLIFFHANGER and VERTICAL LIMIT, but it hasn't appeared in anything close to its original form in a long while.

Which brings us to NORTH FACE, a movie that tries to reclaim the genre from the Nazi association and to bring modern techniques to them. It's based on a true story, and one of the first things it does to reclaim the genre from the Nazis is to address the connection. Set in 1936, the movie brings the connection upfront with Nazi propaganda setting climbing the north face of the Eiger in the Swiss Alps as the "last problem of the Alps" and exhorts to make heroes of the first men to complete that summit. A quest, that like many Nazi dreams, leads to nothing but death.

Luise (Johanna Wokalek) is working in a Berlin newspaper and when her cynical editor (Ulrich Tukur) calls on ideas for stories about the conquest of the Eiger, she suggests her childhood friends, Toni Kurz (Benno Furmann) and Andi Hinterstoisser (Florian Lukas), expert mountain climbers now in the Army, for the job. Soon, she gets a promotion under the condition that she gets Toni and Andi to attempt it. The reckless Andi is all for it, but Toni is more cautious and thinks the attempt of the "murder wall" is a foolish risk and at best a lottery with death the likely outcome. But Toni used to have a thing for Luise and perhaps hopes to rekindle it, along with wanting to not dash Andi's dreams, or have him attempt something foolish without him, so he relents and the attempt is on. Becasue, after all, there'd be no movie if they didn't make the attempt.

With the preamble dispensed with the movie shifts to Switzerland and the Eiger. And the scenery is spectacular. And a mood of dread is established as we learn that the origin of the Eiger's name is a variation on Ogre. The mountain is a killer. And we watch as rich tourists watch the attempt through telescopes as the young men inspired by Nazi propaganda risk their lives, likely for nothing.

After careful scouting and planning, Toni and Andi start off, closely followed by an Austrian team, in a race for the top and the movie really takes off. Remember how good the opening of CLIFFHANGER was? Take that and apply that to most of the second half of the film and the movie really delivers in the mountain climbing thrills department. With cameras getting lighter than ever, you can now get a camera to places you couldn't imagine before and provides some truly spectacular shots. And, with the equipment being true to the times, it sure looks dangerous. And, of course, things don't go as planned and the question becomes one of survival as much as it does of possibly reaching the summit. And once the climb begins, the politics which the movie has already made a stand on, largely go out the window. Like BLACK HAWK DOWN and THE HURT LOCKER, bullets and bombs don't care about your politics. And neither does the Eiger. The politics are left to the onlookers who are left to ponder their own complicity in the possible deaths of these climbers.

In the end, I believe it is successful at reclaiming the bergfilm and delivering an exciting film experience. Which isn't to say that it's not a film without problems. The characters are very thin. Cautious Tony and reckless Andi pretty much define the characters. And that extends right through the supporting cast. Luise is a made up character and her arc gets pretty melodramatic towards the end. While the film really delivers on the adventure elements, it's no better than adequate as a character drama. Not so different than what Hollywood often delivers.

They also make the mistake of using white subtitles throughout the film, most likely because the original film uses white subtitles for establishing time and place. It's not a problem for the vast majority of the time, but there are several moments when the subtitles are practically unreadable against the snowy backdrops. A problem which could have been avoided with yellow subtitles.

Trailer below.

Labels: ,

2/24/2010 08:43:00 AM

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

(2/23/2010 09:58:00 PM) - Al

Honestly, I've never heard "coconut" used as a slur either...though the odds of DD using it as a term for "goofy" against a Cuban-American...the same as the slur indicts, is tiny.

2/23/2010 09:58:00 PM

(2/23/2010 06:28:00 PM) - Al

Suddenly, I'm not the only one thinking criminal charges may be in Al Gore's future.

You can do just about anything and get away with it...just don't fib in under oath.

2/23/2010 06:28:00 PM

Monday, February 22, 2010

(2/22/2010 08:11:00 PM) - Al

Ice dancing would be a lot more awesome if the judges randomly selected the music, Iron Chef

A comedian, he ain't.

2/22/2010 08:11:00 PM

(2/22/2010 07:45:00 PM) - Al

Hank Reid embarrasses himself every time he opens his mouth.

How did he and Biden get in positions of power, other than to suck at their jobs for a lengthy period of time?

2/22/2010 07:45:00 PM

(2/22/2010 05:36:00 PM) - Al

30 years ago today, the greatest upset most of us will ever witness took place.

I wonder why ESPN Classic does not have the game on this evening...I would assume Disney owns the rights.

Actually, one memory I have of that is a strange one. The Rambling brother was in church a couple days later, and one woman was there by herself. He asked where her husband was, and she replied, "He's watching that stupid game." The next game versus Finland was played Sunday morning, because back then, people were borderline idiots, and thought nothing of playing Olympic hockey at 10 or 11AM local time, and this fella had chosen to skip church and watch what is remembered as the gold medal game, though it was round-robin scheduling. Somehow, I doubt that fella had any regrets.:)

I watched Al Michaels discuss the 1980 tourney with Jim Craig, Mark Johnson, and Mike Eruzione on NBC yesterday, and ESPN just did an underwhelming recap of the game that included many clips of Jamie Farr, who was at the game.

While it's unlikely most of us will ever see a more memorable sporting event, it's also probable that 9/11 will be the most tragic event (at least we can hope), as Pearl Harbor was for another generation.

2/22/2010 05:36:00 PM

(2/22/2010 05:02:00 PM) - Al

Bacon meatloaf?

Why is everyone enjoying what they eat more than me?

2/22/2010 05:02:00 PM

(2/22/2010 04:46:00 PM) - Al

Somehow these two nuggets of info are probably not unrelated:

Obama's approval hits all-time low.

New healthcare proposal mentions "tax" 35 times.

Now if you'll excuse me, I'm off to hide funds in a metal box deep in the soil in a random spot that only I can find.

2/22/2010 04:46:00 PM

(2/22/2010 04:38:00 PM) - Al

If the population of China walked past you in single file, the line would never end because of the rate of reproduction.--OMG facts on Twitter

I'm sure this proves something, I'm just not sure what.

2/22/2010 04:38:00 PM

(2/22/2010 03:44:00 PM) - Al

Luckily the money isn't much, but TEX can't be surprised Greene has'd be like the A's looking dazed if Sheets misses a month or two.

2/22/2010 03:44:00 PM

Sunday, February 21, 2010

(2/21/2010 09:13:00 PM) - Al

I am living the American dream.--7/11 delivery driver, works the overnight shift, on Undercover Boss

He was originally from Kazakhstan. The USA remains the only place in the world where someone, like the gent above, can arrive not knowing a word of English, with $50 in his pocket, and with some good luck and determination, end up owning his own franchise, as he does now.

I sure hope they tax his evil capitalist empire into oblivion...:)

2/21/2010 09:13:00 PM

(2/21/2010 02:32:00 PM) - Al

Mark a admits he's pushing payroll, partly because of the attendance numbers.

2/21/2010 02:32:00 PM

(2/21/2010 02:29:00 PM) - Al

No coverage of the fake climate change proof?

Does not fit the narrative, ignore, repeat.

2/21/2010 02:29:00 PM

(2/21/2010 12:42:00 PM) - Al

A Marine asks why no one cares that Iraq has been won.

Two reasons of course, one, it does not fit the narrative of the old media. Two, any reporting of this little nugget of info would remind folks the folks now in charge voted against the surge, and/or declared it a failure...before it began.

2/21/2010 12:42:00 PM

Saturday, February 20, 2010

(2/20/2010 07:48:00 PM) - Al

Justin's Twitter pic appears to be from the top of Rib Mountain, where I been often with the Rambling son.

Though we both spend time on Poker Stars, I doubt if I'm at the same stakes he is...

2/20/2010 07:48:00 PM

(2/20/2010 07:22:00 PM) - Al

American Airlines saved $40,000 in 1987 by eliminating one olive from each salad served in first class.--OMG Facts

Evil corporations.

2/20/2010 07:22:00 PM

(2/20/2010 07:13:00 PM) - Al

I don't know what's worse...paying the guy who admittedly knows nothing about cars $9M, or paying the guy you fired $ work part-time.

The government running GM the same way they run DC...there is simply no way this can possibly turn out positively.

2/20/2010 07:13:00 PM

(2/20/2010 07:10:00 PM) - Al

It doesn't matter what the question is, the answer is always one of the same two things:

1. Tax and spend.

2. "On behalf of the United States, I apologize."

2/20/2010 07:10:00 PM

(2/20/2010 03:36:00 PM) - Al

What do you think about the possibility of a serial killer in LaCrosse?
I agree with you Al, one exists, and his name is Irresponsibility.
Very unlikely.
I doubt it, but I would not totally dismiss the possibility.
Adam took the words out of my mouth, and I hope they catch him soon. free polls

2/20/2010 03:36:00 PM

(2/20/2010 03:12:00 PM) - Al

Hello Al,

My name is Adam. and I am a student at the University of Wisconsin LaCrosse. I have been reading your blog for the past three years, and I must say that I love it. In looking at your blog this morning, I noticed a comment you made about the "Serial Killer" in LaCrosse. Im not sure if you are familiar with the LAX bar scene, but there is NO reason for anyone to walk towards the river. The bars are on 4th street, which is the closest that anyone will ever get to the river. Every one of those individuals that tragically lost their lives were tall males, with an athletic build, wearing a backwards hat. If there were only three of these deaths in the past 10 years, I would agree with you that students like myself need to control their drinking, and these deaths would stop occurring. The fact of the matter is, there have been 9 men in the past 10 years that fit this build, body type, and backwards hat, all of which lost their lives in the Mississippi river. Two of these nine men were absolutely terrified by water, and would have never went close to the Mississippi river on their own. Yes, individuals who are intoxicated do things that they typically wouldn't, but I can not remember the last time I got drunk and wanted to do something that I was absolutely terrified of.

I understand that most responsible adults look at this situation in LAX and want to instantly blame it on the irresponsible drunk students who attend LaCrosse, but I do not feel this is all a big coincidence. Al, do you not find it a little coincidental that no woman has ever gotten SOOOO drunk that she wanted to walk into the Mississippi river and end her life? Here is what I feel is happening.

Yes, I do think there is a sick individual out there that is killing intoxicated students and making it look like suicide. There is a reason that no women has ever been killed in the Mississippi river. The individual who picks out his prey knows that if he tries to take a really drunk girl with him to where ever, someone is going to notice him. Here in LAX, we look out for each other, and I can guarantee you that if some random man was trying to take home a really drunk girl, someone would notice him. Serial killers are not stupid, which is why they are able to repeat their process over and over. He knows that no one will pay attention to the really drunk guy who is walking with another random man, because we as a society feel a man can handle himself, but a women should be looked out for. Yes, I have no proof of any of this, but this is my oppinion on the situation from someone who has lived in the crime scene for the past four years.

I hope this email has shed some light on this situation, and I hope that next time this topic comes up in your presence, that you will share the information I just gave you with the people you are talking with. Sorry for the lengthy email, but I hope you read it, and can see my point of view.

Brew Crew season is just around the corner, and I can not wait to continue reading your blog into the future, thank you for all of your time.


I replied to Adam via e-mail, but will add some thoughts here for the benefit of the home audience.

First of all, I appreciate Adam taking the time to write, though I feel the conclusion he makes is absurd. The idea that some loon is targeting male students with a high BAC, and somehow transporting them to the river without any witnesses or marks on the body, or any other evidence, is so minimal as to be impossible, in my view. I think I'd believe in a Bigfoot creature before this...despite the fact no clear pictures or remains have ever been found, despite this being worth a fortune and people with guns walking in the region.

And never let it be said I do not listen to the other side...though I sure hope this does not lead to a plethora of folks arguing that big government and higher taxes will lead to prosperity of immense proportions.

2/20/2010 03:12:00 PM

(2/20/2010 03:10:00 PM) - Al

The Rambling sister and Scott both report Hardy and Mauer have known each other since playing together on junior teams in high school.

And on that note, I bet that team were babe magnets...

2/20/2010 03:10:00 PM

(2/20/2010 01:38:00 PM) - Al

If we made every guy who cheated on his wife issues a televised public apology, we'd have to devote a whole network to it.--Scott


I still admit, the whole "rehab" thing reeks of political correctness. As I said before, if Tiger was single, many would worship him even moreso. The issue is between him and his family.

And as many others have said, what exactly this has to do with his ability to play golf is a mystery. Golf is not the activity he needs to cut back on.

2/20/2010 01:38:00 PM

(2/20/2010 01:14:00 PM) - Al

I was just thinking, I have not seen a McDonald's special this year on the Filet o' Fish...years ago, they used to have them for 99 cents after 4PM on Friday, and I also seem to recall a 2 for $3 special at some point (a google search reminds me it was 2 for $3.33 last year).

I do remember going to McD about 3:55 when I was in retail...had to go to lunch before the other key holder left at 4:30. There were several people...I would guess 8-10...standing there, literally waiting for the clock to turn to 4, as the price was programmed into the register, so they could not override it.

Not surprisingly, I chose to reserve my spot in hell by ordering something with beef, so I was able to bypass the masses.:)

2/20/2010 01:14:00 PM

(2/20/2010 12:50:00 PM) - Al

Adam looks at the Peterson plan of pitching.

2/20/2010 12:50:00 PM

(2/20/2010 12:13:00 PM) - Al

I was just watching Badgers' wrestling on Big Ten, and they mentioned this sad story. Coach Davis has returned to the team.

2/20/2010 12:13:00 PM

(2/20/2010 10:11:00 AM) - Al

Data released by the International Federation of Bobsleigh and Tobogganing

Heh. That'd look great on a business card.

2/20/2010 10:11:00 AM

(2/20/2010 09:47:00 AM) - Al

As I just said, you'd think they'd write down the fibs that were told in the past so they don't look so stupid when they tell the truth now.

You'd think even a frat boy buffoon could keep a spiral notebook handy. He can spin a yarn, but can't recall what he's said. What's that old saying:

If you tell the truth you don't have to remember anything.--Mark Twain

Have another drink, Jonny.

2/20/2010 09:47:00 AM

Friday, February 19, 2010

(2/19/2010 08:27:00 PM) - Al

The LaCrosse "serial killer" strikes again...better known as irresponsible behavior.

Don't drink and walk into a body of water, my friends.

2/19/2010 08:27:00 PM

(2/19/2010 03:17:00 PM) - Al

Hammond speaks very highly of Royal Ivey. Considering I was unimpressed with him for giving away Jefferson and letting Charlie V and Sessions leave without getting anything at all in return; picking up a decent stopgap in Salmons, a quality reserve in Ivey, and three 2nd round picks (and possibly be able to move up in the 1st round) shows he does have the future in mind, trying to balance it out with a run at the playoffs.

2/19/2010 03:17:00 PM

(2/19/2010 03:07:00 PM) - Al

Mauer and Hardy spent the last week at the catcher's cabin in

I had heard JJ knew Joe from workouts or something. Seems odd though, as JJ lives in Arizona, while the Twins train in Florida.

2/19/2010 03:07:00 PM

(2/19/2010 02:57:00 PM) - Al

The one year anniversary of "the rant that changed the world"...or at least, many of us hope does.

Santelli said what many have been thinking since we took ECON know, that those in power keep trying to prove is all incorrect hooey (supply and demand, blah).

2/19/2010 02:57:00 PM

(2/19/2010 02:45:00 PM) - Al

Russ Branyan signs with the Tribe, where he'll provide insurance at 1B/3B/LF/DH...the irony here is, Branyan is a former Brewer, as is 1B Matt Laporta and LF Mike Brantley.

2/19/2010 02:45:00 PM

(2/19/2010 12:44:00 PM) - Al

I link to this only for the e-mailer who asked what "drinking the kool-aid" meant when I used it a while back.

2/19/2010 12:44:00 PM

(2/19/2010 12:25:00 PM) - Al

Tiger? First of all, it's none of my concern what Tiger does in his spare time...that's something Tiger has to worry about with his wife and family. If he was single, he wouldn't be having a press conference.

I did find it odd he so vehemently denied "domestic violence" had taken place...common sense tells you it did, and Elin was mighty upset and was the abuser, not the victim. In fact, allow me to say the denial makes it more obvious that this's human nature. If someone e-mails me and says "Al, I know you like to stand on your deck and make squirrel noises," I'm pretty likely to ignore it or quietly hit reply and tell them they got the wrong guy. However, if the Rambling wife asks me if I ate the whole bag of Oreos, I'd probably say, "No!" whether I did or not, because I know in the past, I have, and enjoyed it.

This is also why Mike Jackson paying off parents of kids who accused him of molestation was so innocent man would spend every penny he had to fight a lie like this, but Jackson would happily write a check and continue inviting the offspring of the starstruck and ignorant over every chance he got. Why? Because he could, and he was guilty as sin.

2/19/2010 12:25:00 PM

(2/19/2010 11:59:00 AM) - Al

We are once again in the time of year known as Lent, when many folks do not eat meat on Friday...for reasons hardly anyone knows, though one common response is it has more to do with bribery than anything else. The only reason I mention it is the Rambling wife and I really enjoy Wiggly Field's fish fry here in the Wausau area, but if you go there during Lent, you'll be waiting...a long, long time. Admittedly, I chuckle at the idea God thinks it's fine to eat red meat on Thursday or Saturday, but feels it's not a good choice for Friday, but it's none of my business or concern how someone's diet is chosen.

My old roommate said it best, in my opinion, when we worked at the pizza place in Eau Claire. One fella asked if we could make part of the "crew pie" without meat, since it was Friday. My old roomie shook his head as he recollected this and said, "He can live with his girlfriend without being married, but can't eat meat on Friday. Somebody explain that to me."

I also recall one time at a retail outlet, a fellow associate and myself ordered subs for lunch, and as we were eating, he suddenly set his down and proclaimed, "Wait a minute, it's Friday, I can't eat this." After a shrug from myself and a few seconds of deep thought, he continued, "Oh well," and finished his rueben. I seem to remember someone telling him he could just not eat meat twice the following Friday, and everyone thinking that was a fair compromise.

Put those two tales together, and that's pretty much my feelings. Of course, some folks view it as a sacrifice, and more power to them.

2/19/2010 11:59:00 AM

(2/19/2010 10:09:00 AM) - Al

The article that The Hurt Locker was based on. Long, but well worth your time.

These are the men and women that defend and protect us all over the world, 24/7, and think nothing of putting their life on the line to defeat pure evil.

EDIT: Jeff e-mails to tell readers that the article is on the Playboy site. While I did not see any nudity (darn it), many of you reading at work may be locked out until you get home.

2/19/2010 10:09:00 AM

(2/19/2010 09:55:00 AM) - Al

The administration really needs to hire someone (job creation!) to write down what they've said so they quit saying the opposite.

You'd think that frat boy speechwriter would be able to keep track of that stuff better...of course, I'm assuming he's not a drunken idiot, which judging by the record, is giving him far too much credit.

I do have to wonder why the president would hire some punk to write stuff for him that I wouldn't trust to remember to let my dog out for a weekend.

2/19/2010 09:55:00 AM

Thursday, February 18, 2010

(2/18/2010 10:12:00 PM) - Al

From this, I take it that people will vote for anyone they've heard of instead of Feingold.

The problem with that is Thompson has never shown any inclination to run, and just took a job which likely pays 5x what the Senate does.

As I've said before, Russ stays up at night trying to figure out how he can get two cents if I find a nickel on the ground. He's the epitome of a tax and spend liberal, very vulnerable if he faces an opponent with any name recognition.

2/18/2010 10:12:00 PM

(2/18/2010 05:01:00 PM) - Al

Global warming nut's "green" mansion...not.

Energy savings is for the little people.

2/18/2010 05:01:00 PM

(2/18/2010 01:30:00 PM) - Al

The old media still seems shocked every time yet another obvious sign of just how angry and disgusted the voters are right now.

2/18/2010 01:30:00 PM

(2/18/2010 12:49:00 PM) - Al

Bucks trade Elson and Jodie Meeks for Royal Ivey and someone with a funny name who is tall.

EDIT: This deal would make a lot more sense if they end up trading Ridnour before the trade, as Ivey is a solid reserve, and an outstanding defender.

UPDATE: This is being reported as 2 expiring contracts for 1 expiring contract and Meeks, who just has a one-year contract as well.

The Bucks also pick up a pair of future 2nd round picks in the Salmons deal, and the right to swap draft positions in this summer's 1st round if the Bulls pick between 11 and 30. Those are mighty nice additions to what was originally reported. Considering that CHI is obviously playing for cap room, that could end up being a nice jump.

2/18/2010 12:49:00 PM

(2/18/2010 08:48:00 AM) - Al

4 packs on sale this morning, at the Brewers' site.

2/18/2010 08:48:00 AM

(2/18/2010 08:44:00 AM) - Al

Job losses "unexpectedly rise" for about the 50th week in a row (the wire apparently feels each week will turn peachy), and inflation is creeping in, led by energy prices (I blame W).

The comparison to Carter grows almost daily.

2/18/2010 08:44:00 AM

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

(2/17/2010 11:16:00 PM) - Al


Make it Joe Alexander and Warrick. The old media managed to only have Salmons correct in the initial deal. Also, in the news, Dewey defeats Truman.

UPDATE: It's now Warrick and Elson for Salmons. That would make sense, as Thomas played in the 2nd half.

John Salmons of the Bulls is headed to the Bucks for "expiring contracts", per the JS.

Salmons is a 2/3, and makes about $5.5M, so add up a player or two that is +/- 10% of that...Alexander and Elson would be fine, huh?

EDIT: Nope, Elson and Kurt Thomas. Thomas played in the first half tonight, but I'm sure won't play in the 2nd. Elson just had surgery, so it's all but a pure salary dump for the Bulls.

Salmons is coming off back-to-back 18 point seasons, and memory tells me he's a tough defender too.

2/17/2010 11:16:00 PM

(2/17/2010 10:39:00 PM) - Al

Jayson Stark looks at the offseason, and has the Crew as one of the most improved, per a poll of baseball men.

2/17/2010 10:39:00 PM

(2/17/2010 09:27:00 PM) - Al

A wire service story discusses how homelessness is worse under Obama?

If you'll excuse me, I'm going to go out and see how many pigs I see flying around the neighborhood.

2/17/2010 09:27:00 PM

(2/17/2010 08:59:00 PM) - Al

Dontrelle Willis knows he's awful, and seems to be doing all he can not to get better.

2/17/2010 08:59:00 PM

(2/17/2010 07:52:00 PM) - Al

Star Tribune article on JJ Hardy.

Ramblings' contributor Robert mentioned that he hopes Hardy never faces any hardships in real life, as he struggles to take responsibility.

Between his struggles at the plate and his constant back trouble (very odd for a young man, if you'll recall, Ned often would rest him in day games after night games), a long term deal was certainly not in the cards, and considering Escobar is making $4.6M less this year, it's tough to feel was time for him to move on.

2/17/2010 07:52:00 PM

(2/17/2010 05:58:00 PM) - Al

Macha might hit pitcher 8th, toying with the order.

Personally, while I hate discussing this, because most folks think this is a big deal, and in reality, only makes a 1-2% difference over 162 games, but personally, I'd have Gomez hit 9th versus LHP and Escobar versus RHP, as Alcides hits lefties extremely well.

Also, I'd probably just move Braun up to 2nd and go from there, but if not, I'd go with Zaun 2nd. The irony is, many people will say you need more speed at the top of the order, but for the most part, no one runs with Ryan and Prince up, nor should they.

2/17/2010 05:58:00 PM

(2/17/2010 05:45:00 PM) - Al

Many people and even nations are unhappy because some guy says cat is not that terrible to eat.

It actually says something about the great wealth in the US that we turn up our nose at many animals that are consumed in other parts of the, cat, horse are the three that jump out at me immediately, and the first time they ate rats on Survivor, you would have thought they were eating part of the family, the way the media ran with it.

Heck, put some breading on it and fry it in oil, most of us would happily eat cat, though the skittish may prefer not knowing what it is. I tend to look at it just like Chris Rock, who once said he couldn't believe there were people who would not eat pork due to religious reasons, arguing God could not care less what animal you ate, and then ended by saying, "If you're lucky enough to have pig to eat, shut up and eat it. There's lots of people that would love to be able to eat pig."

2/17/2010 05:45:00 PM

(2/17/2010 10:49:00 AM) - Robert R.

Esquire magazine has a fine article on Roger Ebert, who very well may be on his last days. And, even if he isn't as sharp as he once was, is still dutifully and insightfully reviewing films and exploring other forms of writing.

There's a post-it note in the article that I think describes his attitude wonderfully. "There is no need to pity me. Look how happy I am. This has led to an exploring of writing."

2/17/2010 10:49:00 AM

(2/17/2010 10:36:00 AM) - Al

I'm not the only one who realizes what a joke CNN is.

It does my heart good that Andy Cooper was part of the failure.

2/17/2010 10:36:00 AM

(2/17/2010 10:34:00 AM) - Al

I gotta agree, I'm all for nuclear power. The question to ask is, why wasn't Obama until now?

2/17/2010 10:34:00 AM

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

(2/16/2010 11:29:00 PM) - Al

Scott e-mails this link that explains why Kevin Smith and myself are fat.

Mmmm, bacon.

Scott also proves that it is vital to write down your goals.


2/16/2010 11:29:00 PM

(2/16/2010 10:54:00 PM) - Al

Exxon seems to be doing just fine, even though many seemed to think they were somehow being helped by W.

The amount of jealousy and ignorance toward successful business on the left is just overwhelming. I remember Warren Buffet bragging how Berkshire Hathaway pays enough in taxes to run the federal government for more than a day, and how a best case scenario would be to have 365 or more companies with that ability...but yet, the government and much of the public seem to think it'd be better to not have's like the epitome of not understanding the solution.

2/16/2010 10:54:00 PM

(2/16/2010 07:54:00 PM) - Al

This is an interesting article, as you can read quite a bit "between the lines", if you make any effort at all.

First of all, the author seems shocked that so many cold states finish near the top in happiness...however, I would argue all ten of the top finishers are states which the vast majority of the residents grew up there, and have remained there, just like WI. Let's be honest many people have you ever heard say, "Hey, how 'bout we move to Alaska or North Dakota?" It just doesn't happen often. Even the warm weather states on the list, Hawaii and New Mexico, are far enough off the beaten track that few people have relocated there.

Meanwhile, the least happy state is Nevada, where tons of unhappy people have moved in the past few years because the state was booming, and now, tourism is down and so is NV. However, it's easy to guess unhappy folks brought their unhappiness with them. I can't really put up a guess why Rhode Island is up there, but we all know Michigan is still denying the future (just like Mike Moore did decades ago) and not adjusting to the 21st century economy. Ohio is similar (funny how all these union states are struggling so, isn't it?), and then you see a bunch of Southeastern states, GA, FL, and SC...again, likely to be states where many folks have moved to.

2/16/2010 07:54:00 PM

(2/16/2010 06:01:00 PM) - Al

Jimmy has been layed off for 9 caption

You know, I just don't understand the rumors that the old media's quality is slipping, they seem to be doing a terrific job.

The amazing thing is "layed" shows up on my spellcheck on Blogger, and it's free.

2/16/2010 06:01:00 PM

(2/16/2010 05:17:00 PM) - Al

This is a partial list of where the stimulus money went...and to think, some will still argue it was not pork.

2/16/2010 05:17:00 PM

(2/16/2010 05:06:00 PM) - Al

Capturing the Taliban's #2 guy sounds like a big deal until you remember that our #2 guy is Biden.--Andy Borowitz

Heh. He probably told his followers he wouldn't ride a camel home, then jumped on his camel and rode home.

2/16/2010 05:06:00 PM

(2/16/2010 04:27:00 PM) - Al

Allow me to be the first to say the 2020 census should be done by the company whose bid is the lowest...and more than likely, it will be many times more efficient.

$133M spent on advertising and all they can do is pay temps whose only goal is to get paid as long as possible. It's like they live in a bizarro world.

2/16/2010 04:27:00 PM

(2/16/2010 02:36:00 PM) - Al

Mike Hunt discusses a couple possible trades for the Bucks.

It is literally just off-the-charts how much an expiring contract in the NBA is worth. That said, a solid player like Kirk Hinrich, in my opinion, is worth more, because the Bucks are simply not going to have much luck bringing in a top free agent, even if they do overpay a bit. I mean, Wade is from Chicago and played college ball in Milwaukee, and he's not considering it.

EDIT: Hinrich has declined of late, and is probably more of a role player than a star.

2/16/2010 02:36:00 PM

(2/16/2010 02:27:00 PM) - Al

How is "Support our Troops" a political statement? The Olympics are all about representing your country, and without the past and present members of the military, the USA would not exist...not to mention much of Europe wouldn't either.

Pretty soon, waving the flag might be against the rules too...might offend someone, you know.

2/16/2010 02:27:00 PM

(2/16/2010 02:22:00 PM) - Al

Seriously, going clear back to Carter and emulating his economic policies?

It's astounding that the US had a cycle of 25 years of growth, and yet this administration insists on going back 30+ years to find a worthless idea that didn't work then, and won't work now.

Those that fail to learn from history are doomed to repeat it.

2/16/2010 02:22:00 PM

(2/16/2010 10:13:00 AM) - Al

But if I could create one job in the private sector by helping to grow a business, that would be one more than Congress has created in the last six months.--Evan

The retiring Bayh admitting government has failed to create a single job...and he's a Dem.

2/16/2010 10:13:00 AM

Monday, February 15, 2010

(2/15/2010 08:23:00 PM) - Al

Mulder may...or may not retire.

I would guess he thinks he'll never be nearly as good as he once was, and has decided to call it good.

2/15/2010 08:23:00 PM

(2/15/2010 06:54:00 PM) - Al

Bucks' rumors as the deadline nears...I would sure hate to see Ersan moved for a players many years his senior.

2/15/2010 06:54:00 PM

(2/15/2010 05:21:00 PM) - Al

"I told you so" about global warming.

What's a shame is, this will lead to goofy conspiracy theories and the like, as many will see this as reason not to believe the government, be it flu vaccines or terrorist threats. Of course, eventually, I think we may well see some of the ringleaders, like Al Gore, who made a bijillion dollars telling tall tales that the old media were more than happy to accept as fact, despite a complete lack of evidence, held accountable for their part in the charade.

2/15/2010 05:21:00 PM

(2/15/2010 05:12:00 PM) - Al

Sounds like the Cubs are just using supply and demand to their advantage.

I just think it's sad that the Red Sox and Cubs, who could both possibly draw 5M fans, play in the tiniest stadiums, with no plans to add on. Its like Hank Ford saying, "Aw, we just can't make anymore cars."

2/15/2010 05:12:00 PM

(2/15/2010 03:49:00 PM) - Al

Evan Bayh, who should be vice president, is retiring.

The rumor mill has already begun that he will challenge Obama in the '12 primaries. Bayh is a moderate (some might even say conservative) Dem who is especially respected on fiscal issues (you know, not spending $1T more than you take in).

2/15/2010 03:49:00 PM

Sunday, February 14, 2010

(2/14/2010 10:39:00 PM) - Al

108,700+ attend NBA all-star game.

I guess they do everything bigger in Texas.

2/14/2010 10:39:00 PM

(2/14/2010 07:05:00 PM) - Al

I'm telling you, before it's all said and done, Al Gore may well face criminal charges for his lies, because he made a fortune by telling them.

2/14/2010 07:05:00 PM

(2/14/2010 06:00:00 PM) - Al

Thank goodness Smith did not try to fly in this outfit.


SW needs to hire a PR firm, and listen to what they say.

2/14/2010 06:00:00 PM

(2/14/2010 05:51:00 PM) - Al

5M pounds of meat reports of illness reported.

Stop the world, I want to get off.

2/14/2010 05:51:00 PM

(2/14/2010 03:34:00 PM) - Al

Teachers paid $50K to quit.

Where do I go to be a bad teacher?

2/14/2010 03:34:00 PM

(2/14/2010 03:15:00 PM) - Al

Southwest doesn't sound so sorry as they apologize to Smith.

It seems Smith usually buys two tickets, for comfort sake, but decided to take an earlier flight and had to fly standby, and therefore just had one seat. The problem is, though he was able to get the armrests down, someone at SW wanted to show their power and it became a big brewhaha.

Smith is now joking that he's going to start an airline with the slogan "Fly the Flabby Skies".

2/14/2010 03:15:00 PM

(2/14/2010 12:55:00 AM) - Al

Southwest Airlines apparently gave writer/director Kevin Smith a hard time this evening about flying because he's a big guy. He is tweeting about it nonstop, and says Southwest needs to end their "sizeist" policies.

Heh, I've never been part of a minority before, being a Caucasian male, so here goes...

I don't know why the man keeps trying to hold us down...obviously, the government needs to step in and give us all a shopping bag or two full of cash. Let's see, there's Smith, Gleeman, me...the problem is, what will we do about the plethora of hot babes our group is sure to attract...SECURITY!!!

2/14/2010 12:55:00 AM

Saturday, February 13, 2010

(2/13/2010 09:36:00 PM) - Al

Brian Butch wins the MVP of the D-League all-star game. Hard to believe no NBA club can find a place for a 6-11 guy who can defend, rebound, and shoot 3's

2/13/2010 09:36:00 PM

(2/13/2010 09:02:00 PM) - Al

I expect Felipe Lopez to end up with the Cards, to play all over, but probably end up mostly at 3B.

2/13/2010 09:02:00 PM

(2/13/2010 08:41:00 PM) - Al

Professor that killed 3 yesterday in Alabama also killed her brother 24 years ago...but was never charged. I'm sure the families of the 3 dead appreciate the compassion and leniency showed by the idiots that let her walk.

Oy vey.

2/13/2010 08:41:00 PM

(2/13/2010 06:15:00 PM) - Al

Henry (no relation to Aaron) e-mails me this interview with Bruce Seid.

2/13/2010 06:15:00 PM

(2/13/2010 05:48:00 PM) - Al

Glenn with a unique view that the tea party folks are just after the same things that Obama talked about on the campaign trail.

The difference, of course, is the tea party folks mean it.

2/13/2010 05:48:00 PM

Friday, February 12, 2010

(2/12/2010 09:42:00 PM) - Al

Felipe Lopez fires Boras.

Boras has shown the past couple years to be out of touch and, for lack of a thesaurus, an incompetent buffoon. The question is, why do people keep hiring him?

2/12/2010 09:42:00 PM

(2/12/2010 09:16:00 PM) - Al

More criticisms of Andrew Sullivan, whose Middle Eastern views have been as scatterbrained as his US views.

2/12/2010 09:16:00 PM

(2/12/2010 03:48:00 PM) - Al

I, like many of you, have often heard it said that if you write your goals down, you are far more likely to achieve them than if you just make a goal and do not write it down. Of course, that has not made me write down many goals.

Of course, after years in retail, it is rather easy to get cynical about goals, as they are often tied to bonuses, which means they are as likely to be achieved as a liberal lowering taxes and cutting spending. I still recall working at a store in the Twin Cities which had been down in sales for several years straight, due to increased competition (both cannibalism and outside sources) as well as the move outward to the suburbs from the city. That year, our store was given a goal of a 2% increase, which was the same thing as a 8-10% increase for others. I told my DM that it was all but impossible to hit those numbers, and he said that when inflation was figured in, it was just like forecasting the store to be flat...I agreed, but said the store had not been flat for half-a-decade, flat was out of reach. He said he could not possibly project us negative, or we might as well close down. We went over those numbers every time he visited, and it was a constant negative reminder of how unrealistic expectations can be depressing.

I seem to recall we ended up down about 2-3%, the best in several years, but you can imagine how well that paid. My only message here...writing down something stupid won't make it more likely to occur, but reviewing your goals and what you need to do to achieve them makes perfect sense. I made a goal for myself on 1-1-10 for my online play, and it looked tough until a week ago, when the best hand has held up for me most of the time, and an extra cash bonus was offered to me, and as of today, it looks like I will make it, if I am able to play enough (and choose to play enough)

{luckily for me, I have no life}

to earn said bonus.

The moral of the story...taking a few minutes to remind yourself of what your end goal is and what it will take to make it happen is common sense...but putting pen to paper to jot down "win lottery" only serves as an exercise in futility.

2/12/2010 03:48:00 PM

(2/12/2010 11:09:00 AM) - Al

I'd say 95% of the fans at Miller Park will have no clue what Corey makes, or what arby is.

2/12/2010 11:09:00 AM

(2/12/2010 11:00:00 AM) - Al

Rarely do you see anything this stupid on the internet...think of the grandeur of that statement. Kick Penn State out of the Big Ten (and keep Northwestern?) and add Cincinnati and Iowa State...two schools with no academic or athletic tradition at all?

2/12/2010 11:00:00 AM

(2/12/2010 10:24:00 AM) - Al

Hart wins arby, will make $4.8M in '10.

I am not really into the arby procedure, as the Crew has only had 3 cases in their history. However, I would assume the panel probably looked at what Hart would have put up had he not had a non-sport related injury, which were probably close to 20 homers and 100 RBI's.

EDIT: Tom H says the Crew was hurt by comparables and where the midpoint was. I've said often Hart is a bit overlooked in MIL due to Braun and Fielder just being so darn good, it makes an average corner OF, like Corey, look very pedestrian. However, if you look at what the numbers are for an average corner OF, those guys are very good hitters.

2/12/2010 10:24:00 AM

Thursday, February 11, 2010

(2/11/2010 05:54:00 PM) - Al

I'm not making this up...Biden says Iraq could be one of the great achievements of the Obama Administration--John McCain

Heh. Well, the administration does deserve credit for...completely ignoring the situation and just continuing the W policies. But seriously, after Reid declared the surge a failure, and Biden said himself there was no hope with the Petraeus plan, to say this is another attempt to rewrite history seems accurate.

UPDATE: Glenn comes through with a great one-liner on the subject.

2/11/2010 05:54:00 PM

(2/11/2010 05:30:00 PM) - Al

I think I speak for the vast majority when I say if Alec Baldwin wants to take pills, let him. Maybe the grumpy old idiot should take a handful of happy tablets...

UPDATE: Tries to beat up reporter this afternoon. I'm not sure how this guy has managed to stay out of jail.

2/11/2010 05:30:00 PM

(2/11/2010 03:29:00 PM) - Al

As I often wonder aloud, why is the left so infatuated with what Sarah Palin does, or in this case, honors her son?

If it looks like fear and walks like fear...

UPDATE: I gotta agree with Glenn.

2/11/2010 03:29:00 PM

(2/11/2010 03:10:00 PM) - Al

But I do know the Knicks are VERY interested in Luke Ridnour. Hearing the Bucks are willing to move him before Feb. 18.--Alan Hahn, Newsday on Twitter

I was just thinking last night that Ridnour and Hakim Warrick probably have plenty of trade value, and both are only getting about 12-18 minutes a game with the Bucks. I think both have expiring contracts after this season though, so the Bucks will probably need plenty in return to bother making a deal. Kurt Thomas might well garner some attention as well, as a fine 4/5 with a jumper and defensive skills.

2/11/2010 03:10:00 PM

(2/11/2010 02:22:00 PM) - Al

Just when you thought CNN had lost all credibility...they do.

2/11/2010 02:22:00 PM

(2/11/2010 02:18:00 PM) - Al

AP says jobs bill will not create jobs. Gee, who would have thought that the government spending money haphazardly would not have positive repercussions...

I suppose "no jobs bill" doesn't really flow off the tongue, does it?

2/11/2010 02:18:00 PM

(2/11/2010 01:46:00 PM) - Al

If you play this clip backwards, it says "Higher taxes? You bet!"

You know, if you look at that entire campaign of infinite length, I'm not sure if the truth was ever uttered once. If there's ever been more talking without anything actually being said, you'll have to remind me the time and the place.

2/11/2010 01:46:00 PM

(2/11/2010 01:04:00 PM) - Al

Cutter Dykstra struggled last year, and you have to pretty much expect that, given his family situation, as Aaron Gleeman discusses here.

I work in a field which can be described as "difficult" and "more failures than successes", and I can only imagine how tough it would be with an unstable home life. Add into that equation Cutter has gone from being the best player on the field to just another player, not to mention that baseball is a game of 0-4's and 1-4's, the Crew might well need to give Cutter a few "attaboys" this spring and summer.

2/11/2010 01:04:00 PM

(2/11/2010 12:57:00 PM) - Al

Adam again discusses the plethora of pitching, both SP's and RP's, at the Brewers' disposal as of today.

I'll probably touch on this later this week/weekend, but I feel Suppan and Narveson will both play a part in a successful 2010 campaign.

2/11/2010 12:57:00 PM

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

(2/10/2010 09:42:00 PM) - Al

Garry Howard says to "just sign him"...Prince that is.

Needless to say, I feel that's a bit simple. The problem is, we have no idea what Prince wants...5y/$100M would probably be a fair guesstimate, though I would not be shocked if they pushed hard for a 7-8 year deal, as Fielder will only be 27 when he becomes a free agent. I have said many times that Prince is very likely to break down in his early 30's, especially in a non-DH league. I would be extremely hesitant to go 5 years, and would probably draw a hard line in the sand at 6 (this is after the 2011 season, as he is under team control until then).

Pardon me for bringing, you know, common sense into the equation, but let's just say Doug had let him Prince go for nothing and then simply ignored the hole at 1B until today (we all know Doug would not do this, but play the game). Free agents still out there include Russell Branyan, Hank Blalock, and Carlos Delgado...hardly awful alternatives, though granted, quite a step down from Prince's expected production.

Let's take a gander at what statistical godfather Bill James projects each at, and we'll add in Mat Gamel as well:

Prince--.393/.574, 135 simple runs created (OBP x SLG x 600 AB)
Gamel---.354/.464, 99 src
Branyan-.336/.490, 99 src
Blalock-.320/.460, 88 src
Delgado-.361/.494, 107 src

First of all, note how astoundingly good Prince has been, and is expected to be. Branyan had a career season last year, Gamel is a highly thought of youngster, Delgado has been solid for ages, and Prince is at least 3 wins better than any of them. Of course, Prince will make a fortune more than any of them...and if he were a free agent, would make oodles more yet.

I tell you what, I'd make a solid offer of 4-5 years past '11, and would not hesitate to deal him for 2-3 quality, top flight youngsters if he turned it down. Some casuals would not like it, and that's a shame...but the risk of injury applies to Prince just like it does every other player, and perhaps moreso, given his Al-like build.

2/10/2010 09:42:00 PM

(2/10/2010 07:54:00 PM) - Al

From the "how dumb do they think we are" department...professor is a racist term.

Oy vey...which I hope does not offend any of my Jewish readers.

2/10/2010 07:54:00 PM

(2/10/2010 07:17:00 PM) - Al

The first lady links obesity to homeland security.

While I am glad to finally see a mention of keeping America safe, allow me to say, the nanny state is alive and well.

2/10/2010 07:17:00 PM

(2/10/2010 06:53:00 PM) - Al

Don't be so sure the gov't will be "back at full strength when the summer rolls around." If the umpires taught us anything, it's that it can be very hard to perform your job when it's "hot out there."


Heh. Brian has obviously been a Ramblings' reader for some time, and he has now managed to think like my clone.

I wish he had a blog so I could enjoy it...

2/10/2010 06:53:00 PM

Tuesday, February 09, 2010

(2/09/2010 11:44:00 PM) - Al

Deadliest Catch fisherman passes away.

Ramblings extends condolences to his friends and family, many of whom we've got to know while watching the show.

If I'm not mistaken, it is crab season right now, so this may well be featured on next season's shows.

2/09/2010 11:44:00 PM

(2/09/2010 11:34:00 PM) - Al

Allow me to say that I'm sure glad none of those buffoons in the AT&T commercial, who yell "Hey buddy!" into their phones, as if they've never spoke on the phone before, ever call me.

Shut up.

2/09/2010 11:34:00 PM

(2/09/2010 11:09:00 PM) - Al

Yesterday afternoon, the 14 year-old Rambling dog was sitting near me in the kitchen as I prepared to grill some turkey burgers. I cut the metal crimp thing off the top of one end, and it spun off the cutting board and onto the floor. I let the turkey slide into a bowl, and reached down to pick up the metal thing...there was not one. I suppose I can't be 100% certain, but it seems very likely the Rambling dog ate the metal ring, which probably smelled somewhat like turkey.

I studied the crimp on the other end, and it was not sharp at all, though not enclosed like a ring either. I looked on the internet, which gave plenty of examples of wedding and engagement rings going through the digestive process. I called a vet, and the gal who answered the phone sounded bored, and handed me over to a vet tech, who said I could induce vomiting with hydrogen peroxide, or just let it go through. Hoping there was no sharp edges, I went with the latter. It's now 30+ hours later, and he's not had any troubles, thankfully.

I can't even get on his case that much for eating a small piece of metal, as the internet was full of tales about dogs eating Xmas ornaments...compared to that, a meaty smelling ring isn't that bad.

2/09/2010 11:09:00 PM

(2/09/2010 10:55:00 PM) - Al

Looks like DC needs to privatize their snow plowing...because, as is the case when government is in charge of something, they suck at it.

Don't worry, I'm sure they'll be back at full strength when summer rolls around...

2/09/2010 10:55:00 PM

(2/09/2010 10:52:00 PM) - Al

Proof the Dems are terrified of the tea party movement has never been so clear.

2/09/2010 10:52:00 PM

(2/09/2010 10:09:00 PM) - Al

You know, I'd like to think if The Daily Show was stealing jokes, it might actually be funny.

2/09/2010 10:09:00 PM

(2/09/2010 07:00:00 PM) - Al

Quite a game tonight, Illni versus the Badgers at the Kohl Center. If you're not watching The Big Ten network, you should be.

2/09/2010 07:00:00 PM

(2/09/2010 05:54:00 PM) - Al

The funny thing everyone seems to be missing here is, even Bobby Gibbs admits "hope and change" was nothing but a slogan, and a failed, now ripe for parody slogan, at that.

Palin got a huge laugh and cheer at the tea party convention when she asked "How's that hopey changey working out for ya?" Unless you are a loyal, well left of center voter who is still happy to drink the kool-aid of the Carter years, you're not real happy.

2/09/2010 05:54:00 PM

(2/09/2010 05:10:00 PM) - Al

The Crew signs Scott Schoeneweis to a minor league deal, to back up Stetter in Nashville. Scott has dominated LH hitters in his career, but is 36 and has been, ahem, pretty plain the last few years, albeit, no one would expect him to perform well after the death of his wife last year. Even giving him that as a mulligan, his career ERA is about 5, and in several recent campaigns, hasn't hit that.

Of course, as a AAA loogy, he's probably as good a move as one could make. If he can match his career norms versus LH hitters, it will go down as one of Doug's greatest moves ever, should he get the chance. Macha will know not to let him face a RH hitter in anything resembling a game, while Mitch does not have nearly the split difficulty, so he has earned the right to be more than a loogy.

Doug also signed Chase Wright to a minor league deal. Wright pitched in Nashville last year, and has a career 4 ERA in AAA, and throws LH, so as the braintrust has done this offseason, they have stockpiled decent and above AAA arms, adding depth at the upper levels of the organization, as they have the vast majority of their "prospects" at AA and below.

Casual fans scoff at these signings, as the vast majority will never see MIL, but if one of these guys pitches one important inning, or even gets a big out in a big game, all this planning is well worth it. Heck, many fans, including myself, still have a soft spot for Seth McClung because of his staff saving outing in the Cubs' opener in the final series of '08. As a guy who throws with his left hand who doesn't completely suck, he may not have a high ceiling, but he'll get every opportunity.

At this point, he has actually pitched worse in the minors against lefties, so a future loogy role is unlikely, but you never know.

2/09/2010 05:10:00 PM

Monday, February 08, 2010

(2/08/2010 09:47:00 PM) - Al

Irony is so delicious.

2/08/2010 09:47:00 PM

(2/08/2010 09:13:00 PM) - Al

I can't believe even the folks at NPR are wondering what the intent of this billboard is...seems rather blatantly anti-Obama to me.

2/08/2010 09:13:00 PM

(2/08/2010 06:56:00 PM) - Al

Adam lists the players he thinks are out of options...keep in mind at least one or two are likely incorrect, as option rules are strange and hard to keep up with.

2/08/2010 06:56:00 PM

(2/08/2010 01:18:00 PM) - Al

Freakonomics looks at how quickly food spoils if it's not packaged correctly.

That always reminds me of the guy at the farmer's market selling wormy apples, and no one has bought a single one. He takes out a marker, and the person next to him asks, "Are you changing the sign to rotten apples for sale?" Instead, the gent adds the word "organic" to the sign, and suddenly, his apples begin to disappear.

Personally, I'd much prefer the ones that are worm free.

2/08/2010 01:18:00 PM

Sunday, February 07, 2010

(2/07/2010 10:16:00 PM) - Al

A couple notes after the weekend...

1. I found myself nine pounds lighter after week one. I've managed to ride my exercise bike every day for at least 45 minutes as well, and while I "took it easy" Saturday (Jason taught me it was ok to "cheat" a bit one day a week to keep yourself sane), it was a good week. I keep saying I'm on a 90 day quest, and there's no real reason why, that's just what I decided upon. Having an "end date" may be more of a mental thing than anything else, but it's all a mental thing.

2. On Friday, the Rambling dog celebrated ten years in the Ramblings' household. Ronnie was a stray, estimated to be 4 years old when we brought him home from the Washington County shelter (in Woodbury, MN) on 2-5-00. I remember a couple things from that day, and they include...

...Ronnie was the only dog in the entire shelter, out of a couple dozen, that fit the criteria of the Rambling wife, who would only bring a dog home "if they weren't big enough to knock me down".

...He sat near the rear of his little gated area, shaking.

...The one page description said he was male, 4, and his favorite toy was "ball". When we took him into the little room with a couple chairs to get to interact with him, he dutifully chased the tennis ball around, not really caring to give it back, because that meant chasing it again, which was tiring.

...The shelter staff was very nice, informing us he had been taken home a few times, but he always was brought back, for whatever reason. I still recall one volunteer, a boy who was probably 14 or 15, proudly said he had taken Ron for a walk before we came back to pick him up, and when we took him home, many people, including the boy, said the same thing as they petted him and hugged him goodbye..."Don't come back."

...He sat on the Rambling wife's lap the entire 10 minute drive home, shaking.

...We always thought his owner had been a female, as he followed my wife around like he was attached to her for about the first week. After a while, he realized I was the one who walked him and fed him, and I became "the man", as I remain to this day. While he loves the others in the house, there's never been any doubt who he'd choose to go with if we all went separate ways.

...So, Saturday, I came upstairs and made the Rambling son his supper. I dropped something on the floor, but managed to pick it up before Ronnie...and then I asked the little guy if he had seen Ron. He shrugged and said "No." The wife was at church, but I was concerned that somehow Ron might have sneaked out when she left. I had finished biking, shut off the TV and lights in my "office", and came upstairs. Thinking I knew Ron had been on the sofa when I was down there, I wandered down...there he was, in the dark, sound asleep. For years, Ron would always notice when you left the room, and of late, it's a 50/50 shot. He just sleeps so hard now, he doesn't notice.

...We always treat his anniversary as his b-day, so we'll start saying he's 14 now. We realize that he's getting up there and as quickly as he's gone down hill in the past 6-8 months, he's probably getting near the end. It's no fun, but as we often say, it's a part of life, for all dogs, and for all people.

...Also, I made homemade chicken soup. It turned out very nicely, though I was surprised how expensive it was buying fresh vegetables...I usually don't buy carrots, cabbage, and celery, as I hate 'em all, but they do add good flavor to the broth (and as a bonus, they taste like nothing after simmering for 10 hours.

I've often said this, and while others may have as well, as far as I know, it's an Al's easy eating cheaply, and it's easy eating healthy...but eating cheaply and healthy is tough.

2/07/2010 10:16:00 PM

(2/07/2010 08:34:00 PM) - Al

Reagan wins, DC shut down on his birthday.

Somehow, the world kept spinning.

2/07/2010 08:34:00 PM

(2/07/2010 01:43:00 PM) - Al

I know he was a quarterback in his younger days, but at 6-6 and 240 pounds, he would be a pretty good left tackle.--Buster Olney, on which MLB players could play in the NFL

Um, yeah...if he puts on about a hundred pounds.

Stick to your day job Buster.

2/07/2010 01:43:00 PM

(2/07/2010 01:38:00 PM) - Al

The entire Kennedy clan is as clueless and publicity hungry as they come. Why must the old media keep covering these buffoons?

2/07/2010 01:38:00 PM

(2/07/2010 12:49:00 PM) - Al

Palin is officially the "every woman" of the decade.

As the linked piece mentions, so far, she's the only one who has used the tea party movement as an extension of her own voice. a fox.

2/07/2010 12:49:00 PM

(2/07/2010 12:42:00 PM) - Al

Lesson to be learned...never send a girl back to your room when you're "expecting company" later.

2/07/2010 12:42:00 PM

Saturday, February 06, 2010

(2/06/2010 11:54:00 PM) - Al

Ann wonders how Palin has managed to come out of this looking like a genius.

2/06/2010 11:54:00 PM

(2/06/2010 08:46:00 PM) - Al

Global warming, as we knew it a couple months ago, is dead.

This will be a good way to separate those who are worth listening to, as the only remaining folks concerned about it have to ignore so much fraud to do so, I don't have the time for them.

As the article says, man may still be contributing to climate change...but pretending it's a disaster, or a fact, is just plain fear mongering.

2/06/2010 08:46:00 PM

(2/06/2010 02:14:00 PM) - Al

Here are pictures of one of the main organizers of the national tea party convention this weekend.

The old media will ignore pics like this as much as they did the blonde bimbo Edwards had an affair with...does not fit the narrative.

2/06/2010 02:14:00 PM

(2/06/2010 01:41:00 PM) - Al

You realize if the snow was here in the Great Lakes region, it'd get a passing mention, with a "why does anyone live there?" eye-roll from the newsreader.

2/06/2010 01:41:00 PM

(2/06/2010 11:28:00 AM) - Al

Petit will be a nice pickup, as he has a very nice 4.50ish ERA in the majors, unless he's pitching in the hitter's paradise of Arizona, and is only 25.

2/06/2010 11:28:00 AM

(2/06/2010 09:22:00 AM) - Al

Michigan is even or a one point favorite over the Badgers today. MICH has been playing very well of late, and of course are at home, a huge benefit in the college game.

The irony here is, if the Wolverines do win today, it will be reported as a huge upset...because the old media doesn't even bother checking the numbers.

2/06/2010 09:22:00 AM

Friday, February 05, 2010

(2/05/2010 10:25:00 PM) - Al

A plan to cut the deficit...and it's Paul Ryan of WI putting it forward.

2/05/2010 10:25:00 PM

(2/05/2010 08:13:00 PM) - Al

Gomes is a decent enough LF/RF (he reminds me of Mench in his prime), and add in guys like Branyan and Damon, there's still plenty of offense on the market. Even now, there's lots of bullpen talent as well. What isn't out there? Middle infielders, OBP, and SP...that's a recipe for what teams should be going after hard and fast.

This guy even built a team out of the available FA's...if you ignore that Felipe Lopez can't play SS much better than I can. That bullpen is better than half of them in MLB, rotation is weak, lineup better than the Royals and the Mariners, though weak.

2/05/2010 08:13:00 PM

(2/05/2010 12:11:00 AM) - Al

Adam discusses Doug's waiver claims over the years. I had forgotten McGehee and Coffey were picked up for free.

One thing that never fails to amaze me is how the message boards light up whenever the Crew picks up someone who had been released, as they complain how they are picking up someone else's retreads, and why would they want a guy who has failed with another team?

Some guys develop later/slower than others, and some guys are given up on far too early. Being able to find those fellas is a huge part of the game.

2/05/2010 12:11:00 AM

Thursday, February 04, 2010

(2/04/2010 11:49:00 PM) - Al

The Twins are looking like they will win the AL Central by double digits..I don't see anyone else winning 81. Orlando Hudson is going to fade, as he's old for a middle infielder, but he's a huge step up from Nick Punto.

Hudson signing for $5M tells me Lopez may well have ended up accepting arby, though they may well have been able to deal him at that price...or, maybe they wouldn't have.

Thank goodness Doug understands the market far better than the armchair pundits who just don't get it.

2/04/2010 11:49:00 PM

(2/04/2010 08:30:00 PM) - Al

NBC "honors" black history.


2/04/2010 08:30:00 PM

(2/04/2010 06:42:00 PM) - Al

It just amazes me anyone with a brain in their head can think Jim Thome is going to sit on the bench while Delmon Young plays every day.

2/04/2010 06:42:00 PM

(2/04/2010 06:20:00 PM) - Al

Two thoughts from this article on celebs who are clueless on how to keep kids healthy...

1. Who better to listen to for pediatric medical advice...than Jenny McCarthy? Seriously, she's gorgeous, even now; but she was stupid then, and she's stupid now.

2. How old is Jim Carrey? He looks like he's aged a decade in a month.

I just got from getting my H1N1 vaccine, and the Rambling son got his 2nd one, because he's under 9. Somehow, I'm glad we discussed this with his doctor rather than those two buffoons.

2/04/2010 06:20:00 PM

(2/04/2010 06:17:00 PM) - Al

Free market proof the Obama thrill is gone.

2/04/2010 06:17:00 PM

(2/04/2010 04:32:00 PM) - Robert R.

I'm wading through the High Speed Rail Plan documents over at WisDOT's website. Specifically, the Service Development Plan and the Service Development Plan Appendices. I encourage people to at least skim through the documents.

I do think it's being mis-sold as a Milwaukee-Madison connection. It's really a Madison-Watertown-Oconomowoc-Brookfield to Milwaukee-Milwaukee Airport-Chicago connection. And vice versa. The latter two connections are what I think make the most sense for the business traveler as a way to get around tolls, parking fees, and gas costs and perhaps get some work done along the way. I don't think Milwaukee benefits all that much from the plan, except for diverting some airport and Chicago traffic to rails, but there's a lot to like about the plan if you live in or near Brookfield, Oconomowoc, Watertown, and Madison.

Which isn't to say that there aren't things to debate about the proposal. Like the location of the Madison station, for example. And I think if you live in Milwaukee, you should want the station close to downtown Madison, not out by the airport. And, of course, ridership estimates and costs. But, I think it's an interesting report and worth your time to read and see what are the potential benefits as well as the potential pitfalls.

2/04/2010 04:32:00 PM

Wednesday, February 03, 2010

(2/03/2010 09:38:00 PM) - Al

I'm back on weight loss regime for like the 100th time. Probably won't work, but we'll see. Could use some easy, low-calorie dinner ideas.--Gleeman on Twitter

Me too, and I share AG's lack of enthusiasm and confidence. That said, at least I'm exercising and not doing badly eating more fruits and vegetables. I stopped at KFC for lunch today and got the grilled option, my 4th favorite of the 3 choices (and sadly, it is very good, but with the lack of a crust, very small and lacking compared to the original or crispy). I've decided to go hard for 90 days, and see what the results are. Good luck to AG, as he, and myself, will need it...that Chinese food is just so good...

2/03/2010 09:38:00 PM

(2/03/2010 04:26:00 PM) - Al

Rahm's apology...not accepted.

I had again forgotten about Obama's non-teleprompter moment dissing the Special Olympics on Leno.

To quote Glenn, the country's in the very best of hands...

2/03/2010 04:26:00 PM

(2/03/2010 04:24:00 PM) - Al

Those "jobs created or saved" numbers are as fictional as my hatred for pie.

2/03/2010 04:24:00 PM

(2/03/2010 04:20:00 PM) - Al

Obama is going to eventually learn to not say bad things about Vegas.

2/03/2010 04:20:00 PM

(2/03/2010 03:42:00 PM) - Al

The Crew claims Marco Estrada off waivers, DFA Tim Dillard, who is likely to go unclaimed and be sent outright to Nashville. Estrada had a 3-1 K/BB ratio in AAA, and was ranked as the Nationals' #18 prospect, and has two very solid seasons in AAA behind him.

Dillard has such a low ceiling, he would not even be a highly sought after minor league free agent. He had close to a 1-1 K/BB ratio and K'd less than 4 batters every 9 innings, an embarrassment considering the best hitters he faced were guys like Brad Nelson and Adam Heether. Dillard was hitting 95 on the gun when he was up in '08, so I'm not sure if he's getting bad advice or what; maybe he'll figure things out now that he's off the 40 man.

The new AAA pitching coach worked with Estrada last year and recommended him. He has a pair of options as well, so he will all but certainly be stashed in Nashville.

Tom H seems to think Dillard can choose to be a free agent, but I was unaware he had been outrighted before. I would think Dillard would move on, as the Crew has six sure things in the bullpen, and no less than a another half-dozen arms ahead of him if they need a callup.

Chris Smith would probably be in the mix for the last spot in many 'pens, but he has to hope for injuries in MIL. Either guys like the organization, or they trust Doug to allow them to move on should a team need someone in the big leagues.

EDIT: Tom H says he will go down unless claimed...I don't even think a team run as badly as the Royals will see value in a 26 year-old who struck out 3.9 batters every 9 AAA.

2/03/2010 03:42:00 PM

(2/03/2010 11:33:00 AM) - Al

Someone e-mailed to ask when the Brewers will sell their 2Mth ticket. Judging by the past, I'd guess late April, though with more and more people knowing they have to buy early to get good seats to games they want to attend, they could still challenge the 4/21 record,

2/03/2010 11:33:00 AM

(2/03/2010 11:18:00 AM) - Al


Again, I love the blog. I was wondering if you could post something for me on your blog. I am the editor of ‘boomers & Beyond magazine which I’m sure you can guess what it pertains to. Each issue includes two profiles of baby boomers. I would like to profile a baby boomer from the area who has attended Brewers Fantasy Camp recently. My preference would be that this baby boomer, which is someone born between 1946 and 1964, should be from the Fox Valley, Oshkosh, Waupaca, Green Bay or Fond du Lac areas since that is the geographic coverage of the magazine. But if the person is a little bit out of that area, I might be able to make it work.

So, if there are any baby boomers out there who have gone to Brewers Fantasy Camp, or any major league fantasy camp, who are willing to be profiled in the magazine, please email me or call me at the number below. I’ll see how many responses I get, and I’ll go from there in choosing someone to profile.

To see the online version of the magazine, click here, and click on the issue to the right.



2/03/2010 11:18:00 AM

(2/03/2010 11:14:00 AM) - Al

t's funny because it's true.

Of course, this may help WI, but the idea of the government artificially propping up the floor, making certain products worth more than the market dictates (you know, like tobacco), is simply economically ridiculous.

2/03/2010 11:14:00 AM

(2/03/2010 12:24:00 AM) - Al

Olbermann may be done on TV soon...being defeated by O'Reilly 5-1.

The irony here is, at some point about 12-24 months ago, they were lauding that he was only losing about 3-1, and in the all-important 18-34 or 18-49 age group, he was "only" losing by about 800K or 1M viewers...which they acted like was really close...I just looked at it and said to myself, O'Reilly 4.5M, Keith 1.5M...why do they act like this is even a contest?

Let's be honest here, Olbermann is an embarrassment to all but the ultra-liberals, so far-left as to not be able to see the middle. His rant on Scott Brown was hilariously ill-informed...Brown is a very moderate Republican who is actually left of center (as I am) on many social issues.

2/03/2010 12:24:00 AM

These are the good old days. Some folks are just too busy wishing the streets were paved with gold to enjoy the good times.

Whatever strikes me as interesting, and serious Milwaukee Brewers thoughts. If you are a believer in respecting OBP, throwing strikes, and keeping the ball in the park, you may have found the place you've been searching for. I believe in low taxes, small government, and am not afraid to be labeled patriotic. If you are interested in sausage race results, walk up music, or professional wrestling, you may wish to click elsewhere.

The Ramblings' manifesto can be found here.

I'm happy to pay taxes to help the helpless. I don't like paying taxes to help the clueless. Look at the Occupy movement...I'm forced to pay taxes to help those whose plight I delight in.--Dennis Miller

If you choose the path of terror, your life will be empty, and your life will be brief.--President Trump

Never have lives less lived been more chronicled.--Dennis Miller

I’m going to plead with you, do not cross us. Because if you do, the survivors will write about what we do here for 10,000 years.--Mad Dog Mattis

I have never understood why it is "greed" to want to keep the money you have earned but not greed to want to take somebody else's money.--Thomas Sowell

Ramblings makes me want to poke my eyes out with a sharp stick.--Marxist sympathizer (one of Ramblings' proudest moments)

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