Thursday, January 28, 2010

Now that's puttin' on the foil

First, I'd like to welcome Ken Socrates' hockey blog, Hockey Gone Wild, to the sidebar.  Do go read!

(update - oh, yeah... helps to include the link.  Fixed now.)

Second, I'd like to show off a little.  I've been harping on the pity points in the NHL... it reduces competitiveness at the end of games, doesn't eliminate the "boring" ties (games still are even after 65 minutes), artificially makes teams look better than they are, and makes it harder to catch the teams ahead of you in the standings.

Tiresome?  Well, you'll notice I haven't run the Real Standings for a while.  But check this out from The Hockey News' Edward Fraser.  Essentially, it's a pithier and better-written version of all of my harping over the past few months.

I'd like to take credit, but I've just discovered Mr. Fraser's work, and way back in December 2007, it turns out that he invented the Real Standings, with a twist - he eliminated ties entirely and went to a 2-0 system.  In recognition, the next Real Standings here will be named the Fraser Standings.  (I'm not changing the tag, though.)  And yes, I will actually try to run them sometime over the weekend.  It takes a little while to catch up if I haven't updated it regularly.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

A programming note

Haloscan, which has been the commenting service here at the Hive for a few years, is officially going kaput.  In its place, the company js-kit is offering a service they like so much they've renamed themselves after it: Echo.

No, your comments won't be sent to the attic.  It looks like there will be a lot of cross-platform compatibility, so people with existing OpenID or other accounts can just log in, and use whatever avatars, profile pics, and online info they already have.  Whether or not the actual commenting will be worth anything remains to be seen, though js-kit did a good job with Haloscan and I had no complains.  One difference straightaway is that the Echo comments can be threaded.  I'm personally not a fan, because it can be harder to find new comments that way; but I get so little comment traffic in general, it's not likely to make a difference one way or another.

This post is the first to feature the Echo system.  Try it out and let's see what we've got.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010



For the first time, Quinnipiac finds the former state House Speaker Marco Rubio leading the formerly very popular — and still well-known — Gov. Charlie Crist by a margin of 47% to 44%.
As per Drew at AoS HQ.  Oh, wait, there's more?

The survey is also chock full of bad news for Democrats. President Obama is seen unfavorably in the Sunshine State these days by 49% of the people, versus 45% who still see a positive leader.

And in the Senate horse race, Rubio now tops Rep. Kendrick Meek 44% to 35%.
If Obama actually stumps for Meek, he may not even carry his own district.

There's the 24 hours at LeMans...

...and then there's the 24 hours of urine.

At the VA hospital I was given a gallon-sized brown plastic jug and instructed to save my urine for a 24-hour stretch. That jug is in the office refrigerator as I write this.

I've done this before, about 16 years ago. I and my brothers were in completion to see which of us would donate a kidney to our sister. (The Chief won). The hospital in Philly handling this wanted me to save a day of my urine and bring it in. The Center City hospital had minimal parking, so I parked in the Vet lot and took the subway uptown. There I was, on the Broad Street Line carrying a jug of my own urine, which probably happens every day on the Philly subway.

I get to the hospital with my jug, and the first thing they ask me is for a urine sample. I pointed to the jug and said, "Get it out of there." Not good enough for these folks.

If I had a brain...

...I'd smother it. I don't have a brain, but for the sake of argument let's say I did. I would smother it. I might play with it for awhile, but eventually I'd smother it.

Remember that space heater I got a few weeks ago? Remember how toasty and warm I was in the Spider Cave? I got up close to that heater because I wanted my feet to feel toasty warm. I forgot that my feet will never feel toasty and warm because my feet will never feel anything because I have @#$%^&*&^%$ neuropathy!!!

So when I showed up at my doctor's office with a burn blister on my right big toe I was surprised that my doctor didn't schedule me to get my head examined as well a a trip to the wound care center.

It's a tiny blister. No infection. Taking antibiotics until my trip to the wound care center next Thursday. I was at least hoping for the podiatry clinic, where reside the most beautiful doctors in the entire VA hospital. Oh well.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Recent baseball transaction

I'm not talking about Gary Matthews going to the Mets, or Rick Ankiel to the Royals, but Athletics prospect Grant Desme going to the Padres.

Not the San Diego Padres. The real Padres.

Desme is leaving the game at a time when his fortunes seemed to be rising fast. He batted .288 with 31 home runs and 89 RBIs in 131 games last year. Then he starred in the Arizona Fall League, where some of the game’s top prospects compete. He likely would have started this season at Class AA.

“Here’s a kid that’s on the brink,” Fai said over the phone from Vancouver, B.C., where he works as the assistant general manager for the Oakland affiliate there. “This would probably be an easier decision for someone who was maybe going through the motions in the minors. “But if you know Grant, the spiritual side of his life has always been a priority. I don’t know if there was a tipping factor that made him wake up and say, ‘Today’s the day.’”

Regardless, today is the day: As first reported by, the 23-year-old star prospect has informed the A’s that he will retire and become a priest.

As the article said, this would be an easier decision if the kid stunk on ice. But Desme may be giving up a legitimate shot at the bigs. That's renouncing the world for you.

It's my fault, Part 1

Sports and news talk radio are running ads about the Gasparilla Pirate Fest next Saturday. The closest I can compare this to in style and temperment is Mardi Gras in New Orleans.

These ads are reminding attendees that, for the first time, local laws concerning underage drinking and public winoism will be enforced. You see, the parade runs down Bayshore Blvd, where there are many very nice homes owned by folks with the money to buy them. Well, last year there was one too many guys pooping in the front yard bushes, and complaints from homeowners have begotten a renewed effort by cops to crack down.

And it's my fault. It's also my fault that beer sales are cut off after the seventh inning and the fourth quarter of sporting events. Most of you reading this have no problem going to the game, drinking a few beers (not as many as you like- what are they $50 a piece at the ballpark?) and going home. But because of guys like me who couldn't control themselves the rest of you have to be treated like eight year olds.

New Jersey raising the drinking age from 18 to 21 back in the 1980's? I own that one, too.

Okay, maybe I share some responsibility with the law firm of Dewey, Cheatem & Howe, since fear of litigation is probably motivating some of these ballpark rules. ("My client was held down by concession employees and had MGD poured down his throat.")

That's not the only thing that's my fault. But that's for Part 2.

Thursday, January 21, 2010


Awwww.... the Hive is so CUTE when it's just curled up so peacefully, doing nothing!  So innocent and trusting.  I wonder what it dreams about...

(Content soon, folks.  Unless, y'know, there isn't.)

Saturday, January 16, 2010

What I learned this week... what I already know.

The local head of the NAALCP was on radio in Tampa insisting that she wasn't giving Harry Reid a pass, and then proceeded to give him a pass. You see, one can be patronizing and condescending to black people if you support the right issues. How quickly the NAALCP defends their white masters in the Democratic party.

Reid's remarks aren't that bad, but we know that if they can from someone on the right the racebaiters would be wetting themselves.

99% of the time, a charge of racism is merely a club in which to beat conservatives.

Reid went to Revvum Al for absolution. Revvum Jesse must be furious.

There was talk of the Congressional Black Caucus holding press conferences to highlight the voting records of those who criticized Dingy Harry. I'd like to see those freaks and criminals of the CBC call people in favor of restraining the size of the federal government racists. That's a winning strategy. NOT!

To say I lost respect for the NAALCP and their ilk would assume I had any respect for them in the first place.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Because it worked SO well last time...

Obama is doubling down on his sterling coattail record...

Creigh Deeds and Jon Corzine are frantically speed-dialing Martha Coakley's HQ right now.  Unfortunately, the phone lines are a little tied up with questions about her record as the Massachusetts district attorney, or with angry Red Sox fans, to say nothing of the mysterious voices from inside the walls crying geeeetttttt ouuttttttt!

(One of those items may be slightly embellished.)

If it works the way his November push did, you know what you'll hear next, right?

Sir Obama ran away
He bravely ran away, away!
When voters reared their ugly heads
He bravely said "I won!" and fled
Brave, brave, brave Sir Obama!

Saturday, January 09, 2010

The Winter of Our Discontent

Update: If I hadn't found a space heater, this would have been an option.

At 8 am Saturday morning it was 35 degrees in Tampa, FL. It will get below 30 tonight and tomorrow night. It took me three days of calling and visiting Walmarts before I found a space heater. I am now toasty warm in my little cave in the 'hood.

The county fined my boss for watering his fruit trees on an unauthorized day of the week. He doesn't have an orchard. Many folks down here have fruit trees growing in their yards. It is not uncommon to yank a few grapefuit off a tree in the backyard and eat them for breakfast. And they didn't need water for the ordinary reasons. By spraying water on the fruit trees and letting it freeze helps save the fruit from being killed off in the deep cold. Tonight, strawberry farmers in Plant City will be flooding their fields for the same reason.

And if you have a late night flight out of Tampa International it may be delayed. TIA doesn't have the means to de-ice aircraft wings. You just have to wait till the sun comes up.

These temps may be normal up in New Jersey, but folks are freaking a little down here. There is even talk of it snowing here like it did 33 years ago.

I will have to go out today eventually. I'll be wearing every stitch of clothing I own.

Friday, January 08, 2010

First entry for Line of the Year

From Matthew Archbold of the Creative Minority Report:
Secular progressives won't tolerate any mention of Christianity in public. In short, Jesus is the new smoking. And the fear of secondhand Jesus is even more intense than the pungency of nicotine in a restaurant.
"Fear of secondhand Jesus" is pure win.