A Big Game

In about fifteen minutes, at 8:00PM ET, Florida State’s football team will host Notre Dame’s football team. Each team is undefeated halfway through the season, so the hype has been tremendous. There’s an added dimension to it, because FSU’s quarterback, Jameis Winston, is the reigning Heisman Trophy winner. The trouble is, he’s also a kid who appears to have a sense of entitlement as tall as the Empire State Building and he’s enrolled at an institution which seems to be happy to feed that entitlement. He’s been involved in several controversies, some more serious than others. He has been accused of sexual assault and had the charges dropped under questionable circumstances. He’s been stopped for carrying a BB gun on campus and shooting at squirrels. He’s been involved in several shoplifting incidents, including one for which he was sentenced to do 20 hours of community service. And he’s most recently been accused of selling his autograph, which would be a violation of NCAA rules.

In all of this Mr. Winston has been suspended for one game. The university administration has expressed its full support for the kid. I just heard an interview with his coach, Jimbo Fisher, and his willingness to believe the kid reminded me instantly of the famous Upton Sinclair quotation: “It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it!”

By way of contrast, the U of Hawai’i just suspended its best running back for three games for a DUI arrest. The U of Georgia just suspended its star running back for possibly signing autographs for pay, the same violation Winston is accused of.

Ah, but not Florida State. No, as Christine Brennan of USA Today says, Florida State is :

a school that has put the need to win football games above all else, including an alleged rape, a Title IX violation and, pending an investigation, an NCAA rule that some schools still actually follow.

Oh, no, not THEM!

There can be little more disheartening for a Dodgers fan than to see the hated Giants go to the World Series.

That’s what is happening as of Tuesday next, though. I will be rooting very hard for the Royals to wipe the floor with the orange-and-black team.

Goin’ to Kansas City

The Royals celebrate their win in Game Four of the 2014 ALCS. (Photo: Denny Medley, USA TODAY Sports)

The Royals celebrate their win in Game Four of the 2014 ALCS.
(Photo: Denny Medley, USA TODAY Sports)

The Kansas City Royals swept the Baltimore Orioles in four straight games to win the American League Championship Series. They’re headed for the World Series for the first time in 29 years.

Great! I would have been happy if the Orioles had won too, but this is fun. Now, guys, beat the living hell out of the Giants or Cardinals, willya? Ordinarily I root for the National League’s representative in the Series, but I can’t this time. I have a Dodgers’ fan’s instinctive hatred of the Giants, and losing two series in a row last year and this to the Cardinals has left my feelings toward them…less than charitable.

“Estimated” bills

You could say. For the third month in a row our water/sewer bill is $157.88. There has not been a penny’s worth of fluctuation from month to month.

That’s nonsense. The local water company admits that it estimates bills if it can’t get out to read meters, but this is ludicrous. I’m pretty sure I had a couple of really long showers sometime during September.

“Republican Cuts Kill”

In a Facebook post this morning I wrote the following with a link to a Joan Walsh essay at Salon. Quoting her:

“Isn’t it fair to ask whether the constant denigration of government, and the resulting defunding, now makes it harder to handle what everyone agrees are core government functions?”

I continued in my own words,

Of course it is. Do all the clever (?) Democratic political consultants working on campaigns with three weeks to go have the good sense to point this out, over and over again ad infinitum? I sure as hell hope so.

Well, some clever third party called the Agenda Project has created a one-minute ad for the political class which does just that.

What say you, Democratic candidates? Have you got the courage to use that ad?

Who the hell benefits here?

We give Israel about 3 billion bucks a year in various forms of aid. According to the Jerusalem Post, “Seventy-four percent of these funds must be spent on the acquisition of U.S. defense equipment, services, and training.”

Secretary Kerry just announced we’ll give the Palestinians several hundred million bucks to help rebuild the buildings Israel blew up in August with some of the military aid we gave it.

Other than American defense companies, who gets anything out of this deal?

The Israelis get the opportunity to buy airplanes and tanks and other military goods, the Palestinians get cash to buy construction materials, I guess, and what the hell does the United States get out of it? Goodwill? Don’t make me laugh.

Quiz answers

Here were the characters:

Pamela Tudsbury
Chicken George
Ralph de Bricassart
Lt. Richard Winters
Benjamin Rush
Woodrow F. Call
Col. Frank Skimmerhorn
Aeryn Sun
Lord Yoshi Torunaga
Rudy Jordache

And here are the answers:

Pamela Tudsbury — Winds of War, War and Remembrance
Chicken George — Roots
Ralph de Bricassart — The Thorn Birds
Lt. Richard Winters — Band of Brothers
Benjamin Rush — John Adams
Woodrow F. Call — Lonesome Dove
Col. Frank Skimmerhorn — Centennial
Aeryn Sun — Farscape: The Peacekeeper Wars
Lord Yoshi Torunaga — Shogun
Rudy Jordache — Rich Man, Poor Man

Quiz!

I created a quiz based on television programs. I’ll give you character names, you give me the mini-series they appeared in.

Pamela Tudsbury
Chicken George
Ralph de Bricassart
Lt. Richard Winters
Benjamin Rush
Woodrow F. Call
Col. Frank Skimmerhorn
Aeryn Sun
Lord Yoshi Torunaga
Rudy Jordache

Answers tomorrow!

Again, St. Louis?

There are conflicting reports as to whether the victim was armed or not, but a white cop has once again shot a black kid in the St. Louis area, near the town of Ferguson where Michael Brown was killed a month or two ago.

The cops’ version of the incident has the kid as a fugitive who jumped the cop from some bushes after being chased. The witnesses’ version has him as a bystander who happened along the scene of a chase already going on.

Either way, the African-American citizens of St. Louis are angry. It seems like the cops have declared open season on black teenagers in that city and its suburbs.