Saturday, March 23, 2002

I ate nine Krispy Kreme donuts tonight.
Went to the Krispy Kreme in Daly City with Cindy today. It's in the same parking lot as an In N' Out -- you'll notice those two franchises in the same place often.

Cindy had a soccer game that I went to. Some of her teammates remembered me from the fall. She and I hadn't hung out in awhile.

The Boston Red Sox haven't had a fulltime starting catcher for as long as I can remember. I don't even count Rich Gedman, for two reasons: First, Marc Sullivan was always hanging around vulturing playing time as the owner's son. Second, by the time of the first major league game I ever saw in person, Gedman was a Houston Astro.

The game was in the Astrodome, June 1990. Houston 5, Los Angeles 3. Both teams put up a three-spot in the fourth inning, the Dodgers on a three-run homer by Eddie Murray, the Astros on a long string of singles. Casey Candaele broke the tie in the bottom of the 7th inning with a two-run shot down the right field line. The win to Larry Anderson, the save for Dave Smith, the loss to Mike Morgan. Starting pitcher Mark Portugal got a no-decision for Houston. Larry Anderson would come to Boston later that year, Portugal later that decade.

The relevance of catching: Somebody who's new to the team asked who I was after I shagged a ball for her. I told her I was "Cindy's ride." Ride seemed like a reasonable word choice there. Not sure why I didn't say "friend" although in hindsight it's possible that one would hear this and infer "boyfriend."

Yes, I'm still oveanalytic about this issue. Someday I'll just shut up and be friends with women, since I'm going to be friends with them whether I shut up or not.

In any case, as male companionship goes, to this day I see myself as a backup catcher. Not a threat to anybody's starting job but more like what Baseball Prospectus would describe as a "catch-and-throw guy." I'll hold baserunners close, show some pop, clobber lefthanded pitching. Then again in real life I'm lefthanded. Strike that: I'll hold baserunners close, show some pop, hit well enough against righthanded pitching that you can sit your starter down when you face Greg Maddux. Catchers who bat lefty have long lives in the majors, almost as long as southpaw relievers with big platoon splits.

In the NL West there's a reliever named Mike Myers (former Rockie, now with Arizona) whose sole job seems to be to get Barry Bonds out.

It had been awhile since I got to see women's soccer players. It had been too long.

Before the game (which in turn was before the Krispy Kreme run), I had three phone conversations with my mom and one with my sister. Eating well doesn't solve all of life's problems but I hope it can solve some. Going to Krispy Kreme takes away any right I have to talk about this, but basically what I'm getting at is that people need to make sure they get their Recommended Daily Allowance of all those cool vitamins and minerals.
Stuff about comic strips
I remember this classic That's Jake from the first time it ran. Well, actually I remember them all so far, but there's a difference between remembering it upon sight and just remembering it out of the blue.

Bizarro has been hilarious two days in a row, making fun of people and settings that richly deserve mocking.

Of all the possible forms of fictional celebrity hetero-ephebophilia, the one that people should find most embarrassing is any kind of attraction to Paige Fox. She's such a generic teenaged girl, no better or worse than the ones in those 1980s sitcoms. Even her own sex fantasies are oh-so-vanilla, anything involving that Pierre guy. And yet... so help me, she's still a hottie. Light years ahead of the deeply overrated Luann. There's even smartness running in that family. Most of the time you only see it in Jason but think back to the comic strips she draws, where you think it's Jason (unless you notice the hearts over the i's) before it turns out to be her.

The only thing is, if intelligence is really so closely linked to one's opposite-sex parent, then her future is not bright. Andy (the mom, not to be confused with the other Andy Fox) has the newspaper writing talent and common sense; Roger just seems like kind of a dolt.

Friday, March 22, 2002

Calvin Murray's only career grand slam
Happened against Randy Johnson, of all people, on the last day of the 2000 regular season. Ashlie would have been in town at the time. I don't think this is the game that was on TV when we went to that one bar by Northern Lights bookstore, since the bar was Saturday and the finale was Sunday.

What would be the best case, beautywise, for a computer-generated Ashlie/Allyson facial amalgam? Keep staring at that Reese picture on my homepage. You probably think I'm way off-base here.
KNBR just ran a PSA urging people to take public transportation
I'm reminded of an Onion article about people favoring other people's use of public transportation but I'm too lazy to link to it.

Last weekend the basketball radio broadcast featured, at a pivotal moment, an ad for Maya Angelou Affirmation Figurines. I guess these appeal to the intersection of two large demographic groups. Before thinking of the one that you'd associate with basketball, I thought of the one that I at least would really really not associate with basketball.

Then again there's the WNBA. Beautiful sisters and all.

Almost none of my favorite sex-symbol athletes play basketball. Of those who do, Jackie Stiles may stand alone. There are others whose names I forget. All are white, as it happens. I don't mind admitting this. My high school sweetheart was black (presumably still is). I'm not sure how this happened. I guess I don't pigeonhole myself by taste or archetype. Still, it's been a long time since I felt sexually attracted to any particular dark-skinned women.

So this friend of mine (Asian) reacted to the Jeff Kent story by openly admitting that he doesn't like white people. Individual whites, like me, are fine once he gets to know them but there's this barrier that he has to get over. So far as I can tell, black people are fine with him and Asians trivially so. But whites, by and large... you know, I can't blame him. So many assholes are white. :-)
10 to 1, Giants
Mark Mulder, ostensibly my favorite A, only trailed 1-0 through five innings but suddenly just got bitch-slapped. Carlos Pena, my favorite Oakland position player, is having a terrible spring. Rotoheads who snapped him up as sleepers in their fantasy drafts may be disappointed.

The Giant radio guys think Shinjo will have a good year for SF as the Asian community embraces him. I'm not holding my breath.
Vida Blue wants your car
Vida Blue is arguably the worst radio promo ad reader ever, even compared to other jocks. No rhythm, stiff reading of the script. He's had the same deal for a long time now but still sounds very bewildered.

Since you outside the Bay Area will probably never actually hear these ads (for some sort of charity drive), you'll have to take my word for it.
Spinning the AM Dial
Stayed at work through the end of Texas-Oregon. Took the Oregon feed via Yahoo! Graciously switched from headphones to speaker broadcast when it became clear other people were interested.

Once in my car I flipped to the Westwood One NCAA radio coverage, with studio host Brad Sham. Surely "Brad Sham" is a fake name but he's been doing this for years. He's a familiar. During commercial breaks I tested out other AM stations and discovered that the Giants and A's were facing each other in a spring training game.

Brief look at my AM stations:
560 KSFO is now "hot talk."[1] Through 1999 they had the A's broadcast, which explains why there are so many A's bumper stickers with KSFO on 'em. Not sure what the old format was but now it's the Rush and Dr. Laura and right-wing morning show station. Guess there's a demographic for it.

680 KNBR was and is the home of the Giants and the Warriors. Also ESPN radio syndicate programming. Rush was inexplicably on KNBR until July 1, 2000. The day he moved confused the hell out of my roommate Scott. I was in his car that morning.

610 KFRC is the new home of the A's. When not broadcasting baseball, they seem to be a simulcast of the Oldies FM station with the same call letters.

1050 The Ticket has the Raiders, Stanford, lots of syndicated broadcasts (like the Super Bowl and March Madness), and a morning show picked up from Fox. KNBR and The Ticket are, I think, sister stations. But that seems weird since they're the main sports stations. Still, I really think it's true.

CBS 740 is all news. Traffic on the eight's. Useful in a commute.

810 KGO tries to be a news-talk hybrid but with all the retread talk shows. They probably have Dr. Dean Edell somewhere on the schedule. For my purposes, 49ers and Sharks. Also Berkeley.

960 KABL had the A's for two years amidst a lineup otherwise dominated by "standards": Sinatra and so on. I briefly got hooked on this stuff in summer 2000, sort of like my current country phase.

1550 is some sort of low wattage thingy. Before I found 740, one day when I needed a traffic report I was spinning and heard G. Gordon Liddy here, competing directly with Rush.

[1] I think this is a misnomer, since isn't "hot talk" really supposed to be Howard Stern and Opie & Anthony. Or is that "guy talk"?
Waitin' for a build... sticking around in case there are show-stoppers...
besides which traffic will suck for another half hour or so.

Stupid idiots here.

How do you become an actor on America's most wanted? Have you no taste?

I'll really truly never fly this airline.
By the way....

Scotton got a job at Google. A six-week position as a "web researcher." He has to sign the NDA before he even knows how much he's allowed to tell me. Kid's fresh out of Berkeley with an Ec degree and exactly the same Google connections as I have. Maybe a little fewer, since he didn't go to Harvard. So yeah, I'm jealous of him. Happy for him but hard to hide the envy. He'll probably be paid peanuts, and he needs to get a car to make his way from Berkeley to the South Bay.

I'll be in Chicago the weekend of April 12-14 to see parents and sister. On the latter front, we're muddling through. Things could be much better but I guess they could be much worse. I want to write something like "she's a sweet kid" or don't sell her short, but that would be unbelievably patronizing, right?

Maybe it explains why I've been so tired lately: Sympathy fatigue?
Do you like Moby?
apparently everybody does. It's currently playing in the engineering codemonkey sysadmin DBA geek nook. I guess he's okay.

This trend in non-headphone music amplification began in the product loft two hours or so ago with "The Revolution Will Not Be Televised."

Despite all the entries today (compared to yesterday), I've been somewhat more productive (though nontrivially more stressed-out) this afternoon than yesterday. I'd rather discover that I'm a moron (whose mistakes are easily fixed) than be totally at wit's end about what causes bugs.

Which doesn't change the fact that sometimes people have strange ideas about what actually constitutes a show-stopper. :-)
Crap. I can't say "unsufferable" because Moira Breen beat me to that adjective. I swear I didn't see it in the source. Maybe it entered my subconscious? Bitch is more than all-purpose enough.
What Do You See In The Dictionary...
...when you look up insufferable bitch?

I shouldn't say that, not having met her. She could be a fine person who just comes off really really badly. I could be too harsh on her as a yalie. Then again, what she said (via her).
An Oldie But Goodie...(click me)
More about that sense of dread
Whether it's the rain or my fears of what happens when Ian leaves, everything at work has a pall on it. This is specific to me; everyone else is in reasonably good cheer. Various things need to be done with the code but none of them seem to be worth doing.

Also, levity of the previous entry aside, I really do think this priest thing is a serious problem. That gets me down too, since there's really no easy answer.

Unanswerable question: People who currently are Roman Catholics, why are they Catholic as opposed to some random Protestant denomination? One answer, for a lot of people it's just that their parents are Catholic, grandparents, great-grandparents and so on. Also, if you want to join "the Church," Roman Catholics have a better claim on this in the Western Hemisphere than any particular Protestant sect would.

(Well, maybe Lutherans. We were protesting before protest was cool. But would this be ELCA or Missouri Synod?)

Doctrine is important, I imagine. Martin Luther didn't want to leave the Church but had so many doctrinal differences that it got to where he couldn't not leave. Will there be a church in the next decade or so that is identical to Roman Catholicism in every respect except that priests can marry or be female?

All of a sudden I'm reminded of those signs that say The Episcopal Church Welcomes You. Must learn more about those Anglicans.
Poor Wimpy!
Two things about it:

1. Must resist making utterly tasteless jokes about Hawk Harrelson.

2. It's officially a problem now. Every problem in this country becomes officially a problem once it happens to a celebrity.

This is a bad example of the phenomenon I want to criticize, though. I mean it's pretty simple: Wimpy gave his statement, ESPN found out about it and thought it was newsworthy. It's not even close to Danny Glover's problem getting a cab.

(Speaking of which, Danny Glover has the (metaphorical) blood of multiple slain cabbies on his hands. I'm actually serious about this. Time and reliable sources permitting, there's an outside chance this will be my next political rant.)
Sudden Sense of Dread
All of a sudden websurfing lost all its fun. I thought I wanted to read about Bill Simmons and Red Auerbach, except that come to think of it I really didn't. People who were once great but are now senile are... how to put it? Bittersweet. Not sure what I dreaded more, the senility or the hero-worship. Come to think of it, I really didn't want to read the Modern Humorist "9/11" slang either.
The Other Thing About Day Laborers
At 7 a.m. there would always be a whole bunch of them. Somewhat fewer at 8:30.

By 9:45, most of them are gone. The ones who are left look really forlorn.

I bet there are worse Oracle DBA's out there. Couldn't hurt to try, right?
The Mexican Day Laborers
Figured out the other day why they're all on Hearst Street. It's an Ace Hardware store with a Truitt & White lumber place attached to it. That's where all the building contractors would go for supplies, so now they can get cheap labor there too.

Because of the odd layout of the University Avenue exit and this part of Berkeley itself, I'd never have to drive past those guys when I was having to find my own parking spot. (Follow the left fork onto University Avenue proper, hang a left at 8th Street, where there's a left turn lane but no traffic light. Left again onto Hearst, park in the neighborhood there.) But ever since the October purge, Vectiv has had an ample amount of parking. I never availed myself of this as a contractor; no reason not to now, though. Easiest way to the Vectiv lot is to take the exit's right fork (marked "4th Street/Hearst" and actually passes under the left fork), end up on Hearst, hang a right onto 5th, pull into the lot. The Ace Hardware is at 4th and Hearst.

That explanation became astonishingly long-winded. Maybe this map helps. More likely you just don't care. I sure wouldn't.

In any case, I always saw the Mexican guys when I got a ride from Chris the fall before last. He comes so early he can get a spot on 5th Street. By the time I come in, 5th Street parking is usually gone, given the yuppies who shop at the overpriced places between 4th and 5th. For some reason none of them are willing to park on the other side of 6th, the street that seems to divide the overpriced boutiques from the places where people live.

I bet none of the Mexican day laborers are Oracle DBA's.
Are You An Oracle DBA?
Found out yesterday morning that Ian is leaving at the end of April. That explains why (as Scoon pointed out to me) Vectiv had advertised a DBA position on Craig's List.

Went to the gas station yesterday morning for caffeine. As I went in, this big black guy with a missing tooth or two asked me if I could spare some money to get him gas. He very conspicuously revealed the cross around his neck.

Right when he solicited me, I realized that the only bill in my wallet was a very large denomination (left over from Las Vegas) and that it was unclear whether the change in my pocket would be enough to get a 20 oz bottle. I had to turn him down.

While in line, I realized two things:
1. He'd actually asked the counter guy for $3.00 worth of gas. Probably all he had. And he was in a humongous van, too, one that didn't look like it got good gas mileage.

2. The change I had exceeded the cost of my drink by at least a dollar.

I asked the gas station attendant if I could add a dollar to whatever the guy was getting. He couldn't do that without stopping and restarting the pump. So I told him to just give the money back to me so I could give it directly to the guy. He gave me a dollar bill (he'd already put my four quarters in the register).

When I went out to give the guy a dollar, he was helping some old lady operate the pump. Very friendly guy. I gave him the dollar bill. He was very thankful. I asked where he was from; he'd come down from Oregon looking for work. I wished him luck. Came this close to asking if he was an Oracle DBA, but I figured the question would just confuse him.

After crossing the street I double-checked my wallet. I'm absent-minded enough it's possible I'd have accidentally given him the much larger bill instead of the one. Actually, come to think of it, giving him the larger bill on purpose would have been tempting. Heaven knows I've spent money on worse things. This guy would have put it to good use.

Except that he'd have a devil of a time trying to get change for it. Nobody would believe he'd come by that bill honestly.

In any case, I guess a dollar beats nothing.
What Year Is This?
KFOG's "10@10" feature is more recent than usual today.

All Sheryl Crowe wants to do is have some fun. Then snippets from what sounds vaguely like Absolutely Fabulous. Now the Roller Coaster song. Only this doesn't sound like Chili Peppers to me. Maybe it's a theme instead of a year? More to come on that point.

Thursday, March 21, 2002

Time Zone Follies
The game is on. Duke, I think. For a split second I wondered if you guys had seen this one already three hours earlier. But it's live, not tape-delayed. Not sure what I was thinkin.
I think the thing that concerns me most about this message is the "From" e-mail address.


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Wednesday, March 20, 2002

Edie McClurg On-Line
She posted to Jump the Shark. Note the special red VIP text. Two questions:

1. How do they know it was really her?

2. If Edie McClurg had a weblog, wouldn't you read it? I'd be glued to it.
The Brad Baisley Experience
Given my typo of two weeks ago, it's oddly appropriate that (as rumor has it) Chris Rosenberg's gotten into country music.
The Brad Paisley Experience Continues
This is a really really sweet song, I thought to myself. Maybe the family reunion part was a little cheesy but still, I wonder what this is, who it's by. I should have known.

At some point the weekend before last, driving down Paradise Road (the one a block removed from Las Vegas Boulevard), I heard We Danced for the first time. It was as close to a life-changing experience as one could expect from a country music song.

Who's the best pop-world analogue to this? Bryan Adams? Celinne Dion? No, they're way too annoying and nowhere near family-oriented enough.
Country Musicians Actually Have Families
It was just an old powerboat, '75 Johnson, electric choke...

Country songs are about stuff like this. Rock songs just aren't. This actually explains a little about why Creed is so popular, at least to people like me. It's not even about Christianity, just about living life, generations, all that.

Maybe the Creed example is bad, since it works best for exactly one song ("With Arms Wide Open"). Ponder this anyway, just for the heck of it.

Or, imagine the hypothetical Aerosmith cover of "Drive," with Liv Tyler showing up in the video for the final verse.
Nashville Country
If you're thinking, "hey come off the music/radio already," buck up. It's probably just a phase.

Got a sudden country craving. Listening to Nashville's WSM on the theory that if you're going to listen to country music, you might as well get it straight from the source.

Songs of note so far:
I'm Alright [sic] (boy, bad typography is hell on google searches) -- coincidentally, this was big on the country dial the last time I was in Nashville, December of '98 for the baseball winter meetings.

I Don't Even Know Her Name illustrates something country songs have that few other songs have: Neat plot lines.

"Minivan," by a band called Hometown News. Google is completely letting me down on this one but trust me, you'll know it when you hear it. They rap rather than sing, but it's still very much a country song. The theme is about selling your car when you turn 30 so that you can get a minivan for the family you raise.

Sharks
This is what happens when I listen to morning radio too many days in a row. Witty banter or (more likely) sexual innuendo has to stop on a dime and do the split-second transition into traffic or sports or whatever. For The Bone, everything off-color always seems to happen right before Chris Townsend comes on to do the sports segment. That is to say, he joins the banter right before he does his thing. So just when they're about to cross the line, suddenly he's reading, "Sharks play in Canada tonight..." or "Warriors lost again..." or whatever.

So now, both the words "sharks" and "warriors" connote the cutting off of lewdness to me.

They'd probably both make great safewords.
Now that blogger's back up...
Two points on the right-wing music rant

1. Instapundit savages it. "To read this guy, you'd think that nobody ever lied about love to get sex before 1973." Sad to say, he's also right about why so many people are afraid to vote Republican.

2. While right-wing sources tend to suck at cultural commentary, I've always found Reason to be really good on those things. Free market libertarians, woo.
An Underrated Alanis Song
That I Would Be Good. Every now and then Alanis falls into a lyrical rut where instead of writing a pop song, it seems like she's trying to write a psalm. But every now and then it actually works. The last line is especially resonant. The song also features the best flute solo this side of Ian Anderson.
Right-Wingers on Music
Fascinating critique of Alanis Morissette on National Review On-line.

Usually I cringe when conservative publications try to cover sports or pop culture. They're so frequently full of shit. It's even not a "full of it" problem so much as a "tin ear" problem. When conservatives try to write about these things, I start to see why so many young people think the Right is so... weird.

This one at least doesn't completely miss the mark though. The commentary about "You Oughtta Know" seems to be dead-on. He's also right that she's lost her edge, how her songs have gone "from crystal-clear to confused."

For what it's worth I'm an Alanis fan, an unapologetic Alanis fan. (Say that five times fast.) But the biggest problem with her career is something that he doesn't mention at all. Well, of course he doesn't, since it's irrelevant to his thesis. Then again, "relevancy to a thesis" is exactly why most cultural commentary in political rags seems to come out so clueless.

In any case, Alanis screwed her entire career with a single song. It's like jumping the shark, only ten thousand times more catastrophic. Can you imagine just how big a star she'd be if it weren't for Ironic? (Do follow the link, it's not merely a lyrics page.)

The other thing that it's odd for the editor of National Catholic Register to omit: Alanis's own Catholicism. She only played God in Dogma. I loved Dogma. I'd love to know what this guy thinks of her and it, her in it. Odds are his audience has a knee-jerk, panties-in-a-bunch condemnation of that movie.

Even beyond that, her debut album had Forgiven on it. If Catholic writers are going to submit to NR and if NR is going to spend so many column-inches on Catholic doctrine (Rod Dreher exposing the pedophile priests, Dreher and Andrew Sullivan carrying on their cat-fight), then I'd love to see a thumbs-up or thumbs-down for lyrics like "I confessed my darkest deeds to an envious man."

Hey, waiter! There's a black fly in my Chardonnay!

Tuesday, March 19, 2002

The Canonical Neil Young "Yesterday and Today"
Took an early-evening nap. Set my radio alarm. Woke up a little before the alarm went off but in any case. Radio was playing "Rockin' the Free World." Then comes the voiceover. Neil Young, yesterday -- Neil Young, today.

Three guesses what the "today" song is. Especially after the intro with the cell phone ringing. Still raises goosebumps.
Out of the frying pan...
put on my phones to avoid overhearing a conversation, only to dive into the middle of Coldplay. Maybe they're growing on me though.
A theory on leadership
I see the president emeritus is cranky today. (He's also a rich source of material, for whatever reason. Always thought-provoking.) I'm far too removed from the situation to comment specifically on it. General observations... which came out way wordier than they should have but bear with me.

Running a student group takes more work than people think. You have to be on the ball and actually do what you're supposed to do. This takes a little will. I have bills to pay, quiz questions to write, all these things I should do on a given night but don't because it's easy not to. When you're running the group you can't just not do those things. Bet it's tempting, though.

The "being in charge" part is a tougher call. I think it's a lot easier to take the mantle if you feel you know what you're doing than if you don't feel like it. Doing concrete things, even making decisions (if you even know what the hell it is you're deciding) seems a lot easier than deciding in the abstract to accomplish something but not having a road map.

Are there people who want to be in charge? Always, for different reasons. Some want the prestige, I guess. What I want is to be in charge when and exactly when I think I'm right about what needs to be done. If something needs doing and I know how, I want the freedom to go out and do it. Right now at work there's weirdness with database schema, where for a given customer we'll have a dev instance and a staging instance and maybe production is some completely different thing. The data I care about was right on dev but wrong on staging. So of course the direction things get pushed is from staging to dev, because the former is the "gold copy." No problem. I'll keep resending the same SQL and before long everything will be both right and in sync. Until then, I bitch.

If there's no clear plan, or nobody is outspoken about being right, then I suppose it's not so much who wants to lead as who doesn't want to lead. Sometimes people just don't want to lead, whether or not they even realize they feel this way.

Vinny Testaverde does not want to lead. Years from now everyone I know will be sick and tired of hearing about this but I'll keep flogging it because it's a great example of what I mean. A true quarterback isn't afraid to be the one who makes the decision. Testaverde isn't a quarterback, rather he's a guy who stands behind the center because his team has mistaken him for a quarterback.

Gray Davis does want to lead but for all the wrong reasons. He wants to get all the credit for leading but doesn't want to accept any of the blame when he fucks up. Alas for my adopted home state, he fucked up royally on the energy "crisis" and he'll probably get away with it. Still, self-serving arrogant punk-ass bitchiness aside, he's on the right track about leadership.

Jane Swift... I won't even go there. My core audience knows far more about her than I do but I know just enough to be really thankful she's stepping aside.
[my friend]
Conspicuous gender neutrality is always a nice touch when it comes to on-campus newspaper reports. Poor guy thought he got lucky that night, or did he?
What passes for music these days
There's a classic rock station in Kansas City that has just played the following songs, in order:
The Who, Squeeze Box
Rod Stewart, Hot Legs
Steve Winwood, Back in the High Life Again

In fairness, at least two of these were listener requests.

This morning, San Francisco's alleged/former '80s station (Star 101 has reverted to a formula of about one-tenth '80s, nine-tenths dreck) had a "Mystery '80s song" feature. Identify the title and artist to get a prize. I'd hear the song before but I was stumped. They waited forever to give the answer, maybe never gave it, since I had to change stations before long. Took me some googling to get this one. You can cheat or I can give you lyrics:

Those times I waited for you seem so long ago
I wanted you far too much to ever let you go
You know you never got by "I feel it too"
And I guess I never could stand to lose
It's such a pity to say


Also on Star 101, the "million dollar triple play" is the following songs, in order:
The Calling, Wherever You Will Go
Train, Drops of Jupiter
Five for Fighting, Superman

It goes with out saying but all three of those songs SUCK. If you disagree, please stop reading this blog for awhile and come back when you've acquired some taste. Just kidding. Sort of.

While waiting for the answer to the '80s mystery song, I heard the first two of those songs, in order. But I think it was a decoy, since Channel 104 wasn't playing a Dave Matthews three-fer at the time, nor was KSJO doing anything remotely resembling a prize meme.

I can tell you right now that I won't win that million.

Monday, March 18, 2002

St. Pat's
Either my neighborhood is nicer than Cindy's (it is but not by much) or the Asians around us aren't heavy drinkers or maybe I don't even notice stuff like this.

Correct answer: Lincoln doesn't have Irish Pubs the way Geary does. Lincoln doesn't have much of anything west of about 30th Avenue. There's the Thai restaurant, that's about it. Golden Gate Park on the north side, houses on the south.

Spent my March 17 playing D&D in Palo Alto. Ended a several-session streak of freeloading by bringing a 12-pack of Guinness-in-cans. Also brought Nilla Wafers, though I ended up eating most of them myself. And most of the Ritz crackers.

Something I ate or drank recently made me feel a little unwell Sunday night. Either the Nilla or the Ritz or the Domino's pizza (with crushed red pepper pouches) or a token amount of the greasy potato chips or the Guinness or the Cajun chicken & sausage bowl that I had for my late breakfast or maybe even something from Saturday night.

Of all those things, I call "combination," predominantly the Guinness.

Our D&D session ended with all player characters having been knocked unconscious. That's never a good sign. Either we're toast or the DM will show pity on us and contrive a ridiculous deus ex machina by which we all survive after all. Either way, somewhat demoralizing. Then again, Lytel (Paul's elven bard) was reunited with his gryphon. "Gryffey" showed up just in time to save Lytel from plunging to his death off a 100-foot-high terrace.

Roll a dexterity check. Dexterity check fails. You fall off the terrace, out of view. You take... oh, I'll wait until next round to say what happens to you.
Today's Bay Area news frightens me
Not sure what to make of either this size 16 aerobics teacher or this con-man drifter.
And In Left Field for the PawSox...
Rickey gives El Duque a richly deserved dissing.

Some Sox fans (you know who you are) are very distressed about Rickey possibly being your left fielder. I say, you'll let him play and you'll like it. He'll be a lot more productive than you think and also far less of a distraction than you think. Dude, you just got rid of Carl Everett, who's ten times as bad.
And anyway, I really think there is a greater quantity of McDonalds per capita in major European cities than in major US cities and they're the ones who bother to dub Family Matters. The most interesting thing to come out of the four hours was learning that nearly all Austrians have never seen "A Sound of Music", as Tim said "Lucky Them."

--Anna Hentzel (Anna Speaks Out) on Cultural Sensitivity
What's the most disturbing thing currently on the ESPN front page?
A. Ad calling on people to vote "FOR" the HP/Compaq merger. How many of ESPN's readers actually own that stock? I sure don't.

B. Use of "weaponizes" as a verb.
Is "My Woman From Tokyo" a step up or not?
Is this good or bad?
The Dallas "Bone" station uses a B.B. King album to remove the ads from its on-line streaming. I think I like the B.B. King music a lot better than the stuff they actually play on the air. Especially when -- holy crap -- the first song after the break is "Fool for the City."

Theorem: No matter what radio format you like, the music they play in the middle of a weekday will suck eggs compared to what they play overnight or on weekends. It's uncanny but it's consistent across the board. I'm in radio hell here. Need to bring some CD's in to work.

Back in the day, at Silicon Age (or even on location here) I could point my browser to the Hentzel MP3 collection and stream cool stuff all day. But that killed their bandwidth, and so post-Silicon Age it's no longer available.
"Classic Texas Rock"
Not sure what defines the Texas part of this, but The Bone seems to be the same in Dallas as in San Francisco. Guess this is how formats spawn and spread. Wonder how many other "The Bone's" are out there. Probably not as many as the "Kool" stations that promise "good times and great oldies."
Morning Radio
Not one, not two, but three of the stations I listen to began million-dollar giveaways today. Listen for a Dave Matthews three-fer one place, a "triple-play jackpot" featuring Train and two other sucky bands in another. It's so deceptive: You'd think I have three chances at million dollars, but in reality it's all the same million, and everyone nationwide is competing for it. If you wanted to create an "evil monopolist" stock portfolio, CC and MSFT would be a great start.

(Note: I do in fact invest in both of them. And even GE.)

In head-to-head competition, the Black Sabbath song about pigs blows the doors off the Pink Floyd song about pigs.

Rush Limbaugh was surprisingly uncompelling this morning. It's been a slow news cycle lately.

The Alice morning show is quite underrated. I normally hate to listen to people gab with each other, especially cheesy morning radio types, but San Francisco now has (at least) two groups of morning talkers that I happen to like. Sarah, Vinny et al play less music (and slightly worse music when they do) than Neumann, Gina, et al but either work for me.

Caught 30 seconds of Howard Stern talking, predictably, about pedophile priests. He doesn't understand why, in this day and age, any parent would send their kid on a camping trip with a priest. Even confession, he thinks little boys should be accompanied by a parent or a cop.

Howard is a good segue to my at-the-moment on-line broadcast, the somewhat randomly-selected 94.1 The Point, classic rock out of Little Rock. I remember this station from cross-country car trips, finding it better than what else was available on that stretch. Then again, Arkansas accents are weird. Also, this station makes a point (in some house ad) of never ever playing anything vulgar. Not even vulgar lyrics. It's a "family-friendly" rock station.

Right after that PSA they started playing "Southern Cross." Time to find a new station...

Sunday, March 17, 2002

More Fantasy Baseball Crap Because I'm Fixated
The 2001 Baseball Prospectus has "All New Edition!" written across the top but the 2002 edition does not. The former has Richard Hidalgo on the cover, the latter has Adam Dunn. Dunn may already be the best fantasy player whom I've never had on a team. The second part of that results from him being so young. I still have two more chances to draft him in different leagues this year alone. Three counting Baseball Challenge.

Other above-average players whom I've NEVER had (because, oddly enough, this turns out to be a far shorter list than the list of ones I've had):
Jason Kendall
Paul LoDuca
Jorge Posada
Shawon Wooten and most of the catchers inferior to him (because I'm risk-averse about catchers)

Mike Sweeney
Fred McGriff
Lee Stevens
Tino Martinez
(on the cheat sheet in front of me, a dozen 1B rank ahead of McGriff, and I've had all but one of them at some point)

Luis Castillo
Eric Young
Alfonso Soriano
Marlon Anderson

Jeff Cirillo
Mike Lowell
Aaron Boone
Jose Macias
Tony Batista
Placido Polanco

Derek Jeter
Tony Womack
(same cheet sheet has nine SS between Jeter (second to A-Rod) and Womack, and I've had them all)

Juan Pierre
Johnny Damon
Luis Gonzalez
Moises Alou
Raul Mondesi
Adam Dunn
Bernie Williams (notice a pattern about career Yankees?)

Curt Schilling
Mike Mussina
Freddy Garcia
Jon Lieber
Cory Lidle
Kevin Brown
Andy Pettitte
Javier Vazquez
Al Leiter

Troy Percival
(as you might guess from your having no idea who Strickland (Expos) is, there's a buttload of closers in between Percival and Strickland, also about a half-dozen above Percival)
Scott Strickland
Jeff Shaw
Billy Koch
John Rocker

(Yankee-hater tally: Yes, I've had Mariano Rivera. No, I've never had Roger Clemens but this particular cheat sheet is really down on Clemens anyway.)