Saturday, January 2, 2016

What if it cost you $1 to honk your car horn? (rerun)

From April 3, 2012:

The other day I was walking through downtown Boston, and a large group of people in an organized protest passed by. They had police escorts alongside them, so it was clearly authorized by somebody. For one turn of a light, traffic was blocked in all directions as they marched through the intersection. People in cars all over the place were honking their horns like crazy. I just don't get it. What does that accomplish, other than...

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Friday, January 1, 2016

I wish January 1 was the first day of Spring (rerun)

From December 7, 2011:

I went to a Christmas party the other night, and despite the fact that it was 60 degrees out in Boston yesterday, winter is coming. Soon. There are some things I like about winter, but cold weather isn't one of them. I like seeing it snow a few times a year, and it's definitely nice to have for Christmas. But after New Years Eve, there's nothing left about winter that's any good. It just drags on and on. And on. In my perfect world you'd wake up on the morning of January 1st, and...

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Thursday, December 31, 2015 is taking a vacation (sort of)

I'm getting married in Jamaica.  Depending on the time of day you're reading this, I'm either on the plane right now, or already there basking in the sun.  After nearly five years of daily blogs, I've decided I've earned a break.

However, I'm not quite ready to let go of my streak of 1,760-some consecutive days with a post on the site, so I've scheduled some "reruns."  The TV networks all do it this time of year, so why shouldn't I?

The reruns begin tomorrow and will "air" for the next 10 days while I'm out of the country.

Happy New Year!

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Having the college football playoffs on New Year's Eve is mindbogglingly stupid

I don't have any hard data to support this, but my years of bartending experience tells me I'm right: More people go out to bars and restaurants on New Year's Eve than any other night of the year (especially the "amateurs" who don't usually go out at all).

Which brings to mind this question: If you were going to schedule a major sporting event and hope for a big TV audience, wouldn't you want to pick literally any other night than that one?  Yet somehow the college football playoffs is giving us a pair of games on December 31st, the second of which begins at 8 p.m.  If it runs long (which seems like a good bet considering it'll probably have a 45-minute halftime show) it'll come dangerously close to overlapping with midnight.

I wonder how many marriages will be put in jeopardy by the dilemma of having to choose between Ryan Seacrest and Michigan St. vs. Alabama?  Just a ridiculously idiotic move by the college football playoffs.

I almost think ESPN is actually making fun of itself with this commercial for stupidly getting stuck in this situation:

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Patriots biggest threat in the AFC: Kansas City Chiefs?

All season long it's been the Broncos and Bengals who've battled New England for AFC supremacy.

Recently the hot topic of conversation is that the Steelers might be the team the Patriots are most afraid of, to the point that the Pats may have even lost to the Jets on purpose in order to keep Pittsburgh out of the postseason (I think that's crazy--there's no way Bill Belichick decided to give up clinching the No. 1 seed with a week to go because he's afraid of a potential second-round playoff opponent who may or may not even get there).

As it sits now, the Steelers could well be out.  Denver and and Cincinnati are both using backup quarterbacks.  Who's the top threat to New England returning to the Super Bowl?

The Chiefs were once 1-5.  Now they are 10-5.  Nine straight wins is a pretty big deal in the NFL (sidebar--Arizona has also won nine in a row, and I'm expecting them to take the NFL title).  Kansas City has allowed just 12.3 points per game during their winning streak.  Do I think they'll win the AFC?  No, but they have as good a shot as anybody else does.

Monday, December 28, 2015

Dave Henderson was responsible for my first sports-fan memory

Dave Henderson passed away yesterday.  He's the man who created my earliest pro-sports memory:

On October 12, 1986, the Red Sox trailed the California Angels 3-1 in the ALCS.  Boston entered the top of the ninth inning of Game 5 down 5-2.

My father wheeled the TV from the living room into the dining room so we could watch it while we ate dinner.  It's the first (and maybe only?) time I remember that happening.

First, Don Baylor hit a two-run homer to make it 5-4.  Then three batters later, with the Angles a strike away from going to the World Series, "Hendu" did this:

That ankle-spraining jump on his way to first base is an image I can still see clearly in my head nearly 30 years later.  Henderson hit the game-winning sacrifice fly in the 11th inning as well.  Boston eventually came all the way back to take the series in seven games.

The crazy thing I'll never forget is that Henderson was also responsible for the Red Sox falling behind in the first place that day:

Sunday, December 27, 2015

The Patriots' offensive line features three 1990's NBA big men all rolled into one

I'm not sure how I missed this back on draft day.  Maybe it's because I pretty much hate the NFL draft.  Regardless, this nugget of information was just recently brought to my attention, and I'm going to pass it on to others who may not have heard:

The Patriots have a rookie offensive lineman named Shaq (short for Shaquille) Mason.  That part is common knowledge.  What may not be, however, is that his middle name is Olajuwon.  Apparently his mother was a big fan of both superstar NBA centers.

Unfortunately Shaq Mason, born in 1993, bears no relation to Shaquille O'Neal, Hakeem Olajuwon or the late Anthony Mason (pictured below).

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