Monthly Archives: August 2008

Sarah Palin

To get this out of the way early, I called it. I’m not going to brag or anything, but still.

John McCain announced that Sarah Palin, the first-term governor from Alaska will be his Vice Presidential candidate and that’s awesome. I love the pick for a plethora of reasons, most of which I’ll discuss here. But since none of the girls in my classes today knew who Sarah Palin was, I’ll introduce her a little bit.

Palin is the kind of conservative that McCain has been criticized for not being. She is pro-life, pro-gun lady who favors drilling in ANWR (which McCain opposes) and she was the woman to run a no-corruption campaign in Alaska, a state that had once been plagued by corruption. She is a mother of five, one of which suffers from Down’s Syndrome. Not only is she perfectly acceptable choice based on her viewpoints and qualifications, but she is also virtually untouchable by whiny Democrats.

Palin is a first-term Governor, but Democrats can’t highlight her inexperience without also drawing attention to Obama’s own inexperience problems. They can’t attack her for being a woman because they are the party that claims to be for women and gender equality. Palin has no foreign policy experience, but that is immaterial based on the fact that foreign policy is one of McCain’s strongest areas, if not the strongest.

McCain’s pick of Palin was absolutely brilliant. Not only did it take the wind out of Barack Obama’s Greek-temple acceptance speech, but may have also picked up some former Hillary supporters who don’t vote based on qualifications, but just want to see a woman in the White House in some other capacity than just a First Lady.

She is fiercely opposed to abortion (refusing to abort her own son when she found out he had Down’s Syndrome) and supports capital punishment. She opposes gay marriage, although she did sign into law same-sex benefits. She is a hunter and is a member of the NRA. She supports the Bill of Rights and the 2nd Amendment and her oldest son is deployed in Iraq as a member of an infantry brigade.

I’ll eventually get around to addressing Barack Obama’s acceptance speech and try to make you understand that capital gains taxes are completely different from income taxes, but I’m too excited about McCain’s choice to point out the nonsense in the Democrats campaign. Sarah Palin is a great choice and the first female candidate that isn’t a complete joke.

Yes We Can’t

Everyone’s heard (and is probably fed up with) Barack Obama and his groupies repeating the following phrase:

Yes We Can

I guess it’s catchy and it certainly attracts people that can’t claim individual accomplishments and must rely on the the government to help (read, do everything for) them. But for any informed voter, it highlights the lack of any significant accomplishments or experienceby Obama himself.

And I’ve noticed, although the McCain campaign hasn’t expressly used this slogan, the things they say and the things they’ve done pretty much emphasize one point.

Yes I Have

McCain has been there, he’s done the things necessary to lead a country as great as our own, and one with all of the resources that we have. While Obama is parading himself in front of the adoring and misguided media, making high and mighty promises to his mostly empty-headed supporters. He has two years of being a United States Senator and seven or so years of being a State Senator on his resume. He keeps very questionable company and changes his colors faster than a mood ring on a teenage girl.

I can spend my entire 21st birthday downing shots and pitchers and pints. I can drive home afterward and I can skip all my Friday classes (of which I have four). But just because I can do something doesn’t mean it’s the right thing to do, it doesn’t mean it’s smart and it certainly doesn’t mean I will. Think of Obama as your 21st birthday party. You’re going to hear and see a lot of things you like. You’re going to want to do all of them. But things are going to turn sour really quick. You’re going to end up with a huge bill and all your guests will be gone. You’re going to have to walk home from the bar and wake up with a horrible hangover.

Barack Obama can. But he won’t. John McCain will.

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Today’s Idiots: Flip-Floppers

*Not about Barack Obama, you can keep reading*

I finally remembered why I hate coming back to college.

It isn’t the millions (yes millions, I counted) of freshman girls all rushing for their respective sororities (Greek Life: Because buying friends is better than making them). Yes, all these girls walking around in matching clothing are annoying, but tolerable because many of them are cute.

It isn’t the tens of thousands of lost parents holding a box fan or a microwave in their arms with their cars parked in the middle of campus right next to the “NO PARKING” signs.

It’s flip-flops. Maybe not flip-flops as footwear themselves, but the idiots that wear them. After a morning and afternoon of walking around campus listening to the back of flip flops drag across the ground I went back to my place, pulled off my socks and slipped on my sandals. I walked outside and was astounded when I figured out it was possible to walk silently in these confounded apparatuses.

Maybe there’s something that I’m missing but it seems to me that picking up your feet when you walk not only appeases the people around you that hate the sound of flip-flops but it also saves you money by not having to replace flip flops every two weeks.

I think these people are just lazy. They shuffle along ruining their kicks and doing so in an entirely too-loud fashion. Not to mention that flip flops are also the laziest type of footwear. No laces, no socks and you don’t even have to bend over to put them on, which, while appealing to fat people shouldn’t be much of a problem for those who are still rather bendy.

Why I’m Voting For John McCain

A lot of people complain about how many negative things I have to say about Barack Obama, so now I’ll outline why I’ll vote for John McCain in November and not Barack Obama.

John McCain was not my first choice and I did not vote for him in the primaries, but when presented with the choice between him and Barack Obama, McCain is the far better choice.

We all know that conservatives are more likely to think for themselves and form individual opinions based on their own research and experiences. When liberals are asked to explain why they support or oppose something, they are much more likely to simply start repeating liberal talking points or accusing a conservative of intolerance or hatred. This is often because they haven’t actually stopped to consider an answer to important questions for themselves. That’s not the Democrat way of doing things.

Many people have told me why they are NOT voting for McCain, but no one can give me a solid response to why they ARE voting for Barack Obama. While my opposition to Obama is justified, I’ve realized that I haven’t really justified voting for McCain. He’s simply been the proverbial “lesser of two evils” when thrown in with Barack Obama.

War/National Security: McCain has always been the best in regards to this important issue. He supports the military and whose military service is impeccable and unquestionable. He stood in support for victory in Iraq and was right in the end when the surge worked because of that policy and the unbelievable job done by American soldiers.

He gets that the one and only way to end radical Islamic terrorism is to beat the hell out of it and not have a sit-down chat. His knowledge of the military is unmatched by candidates and understands that it is necessary to sometimes protect our freedoms by fighting evil. Support: 10/10

Energy/Oil: He loses points for momentarily buying into the global warming myth, but he understands that we need oil and he now supports domestic drilling. He realizes that relying on foreign oil for 70% of our oil creates an economic problem and a national security threat. Support: 6/10

Taxes: No tax increases. John McCain supports personal achievement and individual responsibility. He knows that the successful American citizen knows how to spend their money than the government. Support: 8/10

Government Spending: McCain favors limited government and limited government spending. As a President should. Excessive government spending will bankrupt the United States. Support: 8/10

The Supreme Court: In the next four years one, maybe two Justices will retire. The replacements will determine whether the Supreme Court upholds Constitutional law, or tries to legislate from above. Samuel Alito and John Roberts are Constitutional judges that John McCain has expressed deserved support for. These are two that understand the responsibility of the Supreme Court is to apply the law as it is in the Constitution and not use their position as a way of pushing liberal legislation that dies in Congress. Support: 10/10

Abortion: This is a do-or-die issue for some people, myself included. I cannot, in good faith vote for a candidate that supports this despicable practice. John McCain has a 25-year record in favor of the sanctity of life and believes that the rights of the unborn begin at conception, not birth or the first trimester. Although I’m not fond of the recent rumors that he’d consider a pro-choice VP candidate. Support: 9/10

Immigration: He did sponsor that amnesty bill awhile back, but he seems to have come to understand that border security is the most important issue in regards to illegal immigration. He demonstrates at least some willingness to listen to the American people. Support: 7/10

It’s true that I will vote for John McCain because I will not support Barack Obama. Many people support Obama because he sounds and looks good. But those are incredibly shallow and unacceptable reasons to support a Presidential candidate.

McCain’s policies gel with my own personal beliefs and opinions. But my opinions are somewhat educated and driven by a belief that personal achievement cannot be overvalued. I believe that America is at its best when it’s citizens work hard and are able to support themselves. I believe in an America where you receive benefits because you’ve worked for them, and earned them. Not one where people feel they have some sort of fabricated right to things; that they are entitled to this and that.

McCain understands that terrorists won’t stop trying to destroy everything that America is and that radical Islam needs to be forcefully stamper out. He’s slowly coming around to the fact that illegal immigrants do not benefit the country.

Add all that to the fact that he is not Barack Obama, and he’s the only choice I see that makes any sense in November. If you disagree, that’s fine. But don’t feed me all this shite about “hope” and “change.” Don’t tell me what you don’t like about John McCain, because if that’s all you have, then don’t vote. Tell me why Barack Obama’s experience, policies and qualifications make him a good choice for the White House.

Now, I do believe that it is imperative that McCain make a good, yet strategic VP selection. While I do like Mike Huckabee and Mitt Romney and believe both would be a fine VP choice, neither of them help distinguish the slate as more than another Bush/Cheney. I’d say Hutchinson, the Senator from Texas would be a good choice, although she’s probably got a little too much baggage for McCain to chance. Personally, I’d like to see McCain pick up Sarah Palin, the first-term governor from Alaska. She would be a great strategic pick as well as a excellent political VP choice as well. I’m going to go out on a limb and say McCain picks Palin and makes the 2008 Presidential election a whole lot more interesting.

JCBC Softball: Playoff Game 1

We were given about 24 hours notice as to what day and time our game would be and were only able to round up and contact 8 people to play.

So, playing two men down, we were forced to forego a second baseman and a fourth outfielder and were eliminated from the playoffs with an 11-9 loss.

A few 1-2-3 innings killed any momentum that we could muster although even being short two defensive players, we played pretty good defense. JT had a couple of good catches in the outfield, TJ threw a runner out at third and Nate made a nice grab at third.

TJ hit his third home run of the season and drove in four while Nate had a single and a triple to drive in three runs. JT went 3-for-3 and Ned had three more hits.

Dwight: 1-4, 2R, BB
Ned: 3-5, 3R
TJ: 2-5, HR, 4RBI, 2R (three HR last two games)
Scott: 2-4, RBI
Nate: 2-4, R, 3B, 3RBI, ROE, FC (on base four times)
JT: 3-3, RBI (sac fly)
Josh: 1-4
Kevin: 0-4, 2K

The Chinese Women’s Gymnastics Team

So I’m sitting here in my living room watching the Women’s Gymnastics competition. The Chinese and American women have both been very good and clearly better than any other country’s team.

I’m watching the American women jump and spin and twirl (and watching that brown-eyed girl fall off the balance beam and onto her butt on the floor routine, ugh!) and they look young. They look to be about my age or a little younger. Around 17-20ish. I don’t know for sure, but somewhere around that age range.

But what I know for a fact is that those Chinese gymnasts are NOT 16. Not even fucking close. They all look nine or ten, twelve at the oldest. I don’t care how many passports that the Chinese government prints up to say that all these girls are 16 (Olympic minimum age is 16, btw) beause none of them are close. My driver’s license still says I weigh 150. And that’s not even close.

Take the floor routine for example. Of the three American girls that did it tonight, at least two stepped out and I’m pretty sure the third one did as well. None of the Chinese girls stepped out. So you may think that the Chinese team was actually better than, and executed better than the Americans. Well, maybe, but their strides are also shorter given the fact that they’re probably 6 to 8 inches shorter and 6 to 8 years younger than the Americans (at least)

I bet you that China could bring the exact same team to the 2012 Olympics in London and they still wouldn’t be old enough to compete. It’s ridiculous. I could understand if they were close to 16, but they’re not. I don’t know anything really about the physics of gymnastics, but the American team was much more top-heavy than the Chinese team. I assume that affects something. I know that smaller, lighter and less body fat is good for gymnastic success, and nine year olds are generally smaller, lighter and have less body fat than 18 year olds.

Just because Chinese people look alike, doesn’t mean that I can’t tell a ten year old isn’t sixteen. Chinese people do look younger than they really are, but this is insane. The combination that China has never won Olympic gold in women’s gymnastics and the fact that the Games are in Beijing probably is causing the Chinese to do whatever it takes to win. Hey, the American women won their only Gold Medal in Atlanta in ’96. Probably not a complete coincidence.

Not to mention the Chinese judging seems a bit flawed. US gymnast and World Champion Shawn Johnson (woman) executed nearly a perfect routine and received a 9.058 in execution. No stumbles, no falls, great dismount. And still was docked 0.942 points.

Performance enhancing drugs are against the rules in the Olympics and just recently Americans have had to forfeit medals because of them. And similarly, being too young is also against the rules.

JCBC Softball: Game 8

JOHN’S CREEK 26, OPPONENT 13

I proudly present to you .. OFFENSE!

After seven games of playing against opposing teams AND the umpires, we finally figured out how to beat the system. Score so many runs that it doesn’t matter if the umpires call the other team’s guy safe at third even though our third baseman tagged him three steps in front of third.

Everybody on the team had a hit and everyone scored at least twice. David hit a grand slam in the first inning and a solo shot in the third and finished with seven RBI. TJ had three hits, including two in-the-park-home runs and drove in four runs. Dwight drove in five runs from the leadoff spot and JT collected four hits, including a double.

The game ended when TJ [purposely] let a ball bounce over his head so he could chase it down, throw it to Lou who nailed the runner at the plate. But what surprised me most is that the umpire was paying attention and called the guy out.

Unfortunately for all of you, I failed to get thrown out of the game as I promised I would. But I came close.

In the third inning on the aforementioned play where we nailed a runner at, or more accurately, three steps before third base. For some reason Umpire Fatty McButterpants wasn’t anywhere near the bag (no cheeseburger) and for some other unbeknownst reason, the home plate umpire felt it more pressing to pick up a bat rather than watch the play. So he called him safe and explained to our third baseman that he didn’t see it because he was apparently saving lives by moving the bat.

The next batter routinely flies out to left field and this encounter takes place between me and Fatty McButterpants.

“Wonder if he saw that one.”
“Watch the mouth one-two [my number is 12], watch the mouth.
“You watching this game, blue?”
“You want to get tossed, one-two?

Perhaps, perhaps. I really wanted to answer, but we only had ten players and would have had to play a man down (two, because TJ likes to do everything I do, like see Batman in IMAX) and even though we had a big lead, I didn’t want to cripple the team.

And with the win we advance into the playoffs. It’s like the Eastern Conference in the NFC! And here are your John’s Creek leaders for the 2008 Summer Season (15 AB needed to qualify)

At-Bats – TJ (25)
Hits – Nate (12)
Runs – Nate (12)
Doubles – Nate (9)
Triples – Ned, Dwight, TJ, Robert, Lou (all with 1)
Home Runs – David (3)
Walks – Dwight (6)
Strikeouts – Rob (3)
Reached on Error – Josh, TJ (3)
Runs Batted In – David, Dwight, Nate (10)
Sacrifice Flies – Nate, TJ, Robert (1)
Average – Nate (.583 – 14-for-24)
On Base Percentage – Ned (.792-wow!)
Slugging Percentage – Nate (.958)
On Base Plus Slugging – Nate (1.651)

It’s important to note that David put up a .500 average, 1.600 SLG and a sick 2.100 OPS in 10 AB this season.

JCBC Softball: Game 7

OPPONENT 12, JOHN’S CREEK 11

Alright, here it goes.

I’ve been thinking back on my previous baseball and softball experiences and never in my life has the officiating cost my team a win. Sure, umpires have blown calls and blown our CHANCE at winning the game, but tonight Umpire Fatty McButterpants and his partner cost John’s Creek the game.

Completely ignoring the two strike zones (one for the top half of the inning and one for the bottom half) let me take you to the bottom of the fourth inning. There are two outs and runners on first and second. One run had scored in the inning and their batter lofted a fly ball to right field. Our fielder bobbles the ball allowing the runner from second to score and the runner from first to come around third and head home. I take the relay throw and fire a perfect laser to Josh, waiting at the plate.

First off, the first runner bumps him (which should be an interference call and make the second runner automatically out) but the home plate umpire is too busy chatting the other team’s captain, some fake-tan punk, to care. As Josh stands on home plate with the ball and tags the second runner out by more than a step I start jogging off the field.

NO, HE’S IN THERE!”

I spin around to find that home plate umpire Baldspot McBlindspot has called the second runner safe. At this point I take two steps towards this a-hole while biting my tongue to avoid being tossed out of the game. Several “You gotta be kidding me’s” and a few “unbelievable’s” followed. I told Fatty McButterpants that he and his partner were killing us and he said the guy “slid in safely”.

They go on to score two more runs that inning before ironically, the annoying punk captain of the other team grounds out to me to end the inning.

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I’ll continue with some more blatantly biased calls.

  • In the third inning, Josh leads off with a clean single to right. As the right-fielder bobbles the ball, Josh heads for second and slides in well ahead of the tag. The shortstop proceeds to kick Josh’s foot off the base, tag him and toss the ball back to his pitcher as the umpire calls Josh out.
  • In our eight run sixth-inning, Josh is headed to third on a throwing error and their pitcher tries to trick Josh into sliding by pretending the ball is coming when in reality it’s rolling down the left-field line. Luckily Josh doesn’t pay attention to such things as ball location, but the pitcher’s actions are still grounds for ejection. Not so much as a warning.
  • This one needs some setting up. There’s three minutes remaining on the time limit and they’re the home team up to bat with the score tied. They get a leadoff double and then their next guy grounds out to short, moving the runner to third. The next guy walks and the guy after him lifts a long fly ball to left. Zachary catches it for the second out, and the go-ahead run from third scores. However, the runner at first left the bag a good two seconds before Zachary catches it so had we thrown the ball to first we would have doubled off the runner, thus disallowing the run and ending the inning. But the home plate umpire called the game as soon as the run scored, obviously not aware of all of the game’s rules. When I argued with him, he informed me that it “wouldn’t have made any difference.” Except the fact that the game would still be tied, and not over.

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We have one game remaining in the season, and I wouldn’t mind if the umpires continue to alter the outcome of the game, because I don’t mind getting run from the last game. I’m bringing my own umpires next week.

Abbreviated Boxscore

Dwight: 1-3, R, BB (on base 17 times in 7 games)
Ned: 3-4, R, RBI (leads the team in hitting at .643)
TJ: 0-3 (on the team)
Lou: 2-3, 2R, 2 2B, RBI (average up to .333)
Zachary: 1-3, R, 2RBI (6th on the team in RBI despite playing in only 2 games)
Nathaniel: 2-3, R, 2B, RBI (leads team in OBP [.727] and SLG% [1.000])
Robert: 2-3, R, RBI (tied for team lead in RBI with 8 )
JT: 2-3, R, RBI (first multi-hit game of the season)
James: 1-3, R, RBI (3 for his last 6 after starting the season 0-for-6)
Josh: 1-3, R, ROE (tied for team lead in HR with one)
Michael: 1-3, R, RBI

What Do I Think About Brett Favre?

First off, I still don’t understand why it’s spelled one way and pronounced another.

Regarding the trade itself, it’s certainly a good one for the Jets if only because Green Bay had to make a trade. The Jets were lucky they don’t play the Packers, weren’t in their conference and probably aren’t good enough to potentially meet the Packers in a Super Bowl this year or next. Currently, the Jets get Favre for a fourth-round pick, but it will most likely escalate to a third-rounder, possibly a second-rounder depending on how Favre and the Jets do. I don’t think it’s unreasonable to assume the Jets could make the playoffs (they did only two years ago). If the Jets end up playing in the Super Bowl, then they send a first-round pick to Green Bay and personally, I think that’s worth it. It would either be the 31st or 32nd pick, which is basically a second-round pick anyways. If you told me I could get to a Super Bowl while losing my first round draft choice, I’d do it every time.

As for Favre himself, he always rubbed me the wrong way and the past month or so hasn’t helped. I get why he wanted to play for Minnesota or Chicago or Tampa Bay over the Jets, since he’s more familiar with not only their offenses, but the competition he’d face week in and week out. But it’s incredibly egotistical of the man to put the Packers through all that after everything they’ve done for him and put up with. From what I hear, Favre had to be assured that New York is a pretty big media market and he’ll get his attention. Maybe that’s good, maybe not.

Regardless of how I feel about Brett Favre, there’s no doubt that he improves the Jets. Last night, the Jets had one quarterback who had poise and experience and another one that could throw the ball a mile. Now they’ve got one with all that stuff. We’ll finally see if Laveranues Coles is the deep threat he thinks he is. In the early parts of training camp, reports were that Clemens wasn’t impressing much and Chad Pennington was more of not losing the job than winning it.

What the addition of Brett Favre does is make every situation manageable. The Jets were a horrible conversion team in just about any yardage situation and their only fourth down play was to hope they could draw the defense offsides. And that doesn’t really work in the NFL too much. The Jets have had some pretty decent receiving options what with Jerricho Cotchery coming into his own and rookie “tight end” Dustin Keller catching on quick. Add in Coles and Favre’s old tight end Bubba Franks and I could see the offense improving drastically. The Jets will probably run the ball more this year than in past years which could also help Favre’s transition.

Of course I don’t expect the addition of Favre to allow the Jets to overtake the Patriots in the division, but they should be the favorites to finish right behind New England. The Pats lost Randall Gay and Asante Samuel this summer and will be breaking in a new secondary. Sure, there front seven is impressive, but Favre’s wriggled out of stuff a million times before and an improved line should allow him enough time to hopefully exploit a team’s coverage schemes.

Is Brett Favre a favorite of mine? Certainly not, but he does drastically improve this team and that’s basically what a fan wants to see from management. This season will certainly be more exciting and publicized, if nothing else. I don’t like Brett Favre, but I like the Jets and this move made sense for them.

Today’s Idiot: The Lady In Front Of Me At Arby’s

Yes, I eat at Arby’s. Its delicious food cannot be matched by any other fast-food restaurant I’ve yet encountered. It specializes in delicious and scrumptious roast beef, and the thing about roast beef, is it’s really pretty much an American thing. I’ve been abroad too many times to count and foreign countries just haven’t discovered how to put delicious roast beef on a bun and eat it. Ham, turkey and other sandwich meats, yes, but not roast beef.

So I’m standing in line today on my lunch break at Arby’s, salivating at the thought of my Bacon Beef ‘N Cheddar sandwich (two fantastic meats in one sandwich) and over my thoughts I hear the lady in front of me order a regular roast beef sandwich. She gets her food, and as I’m waiting for mine, she returns to the counter with the sandwich unwrapped and gets the attention of the girl behind the counter.

I’m preparing to hear the lady tell the girl how wonderful the sandwich is and if she can have two more, but then she comes up with this gem.

Can I get a new sandwich? This one has too much roast beef on it.

Too much roast beef! That’s crazytalk! The general rule of thumb is, if it fits in the bun, you can add one more slice of roast beef and it’s still not too much. One cannot have too much roast beef on a sandwich.

So the girl behind the counter took the sandwich, threw it away and made the lady a new one. The two of them combined to waste 5oz of perfectly good beef. How sad.