October 14, 2004

I'm Still Tired

Today's Musical Selection: "Knock on Wood" by Amii Stewart

Today I bring you more random short thoughts, since I still can't seem to wrap my mind around a coherent point...

- Today's first report comes from my mom, who says that my dad, while watching the Yankees game last night, spent the last four innings chanting "Who's your daddy?" along with the stadium crowd. Bear in mind that my father is a gainfully employed, well-respected computer scientist in his 50s. "Who's your daddy?" is not part of his usual conversational repertoire. I asked him if he even knew what it meant. He said, "I guess his dad used to beat him all the time, like the Yankees do." He then proceeded to recount an apocryphal tale from his childhood in which his mother used to show him flash cards and hit him with a yardstick whenever he got the answer wrong. For some reason, I used to think my family was normal.

- Did anyone else think when they were a kid that "The Hunchback of Notre Dame" was about the university? Just wondering.

- I see that, with his usual tact and charm, William Donald Schaefer has found a new way to get attention: attacking AIDS victims. The former governor and current comptroller of the state of Maryland called people with AIDS "a danger" and said they are "bad people" who "brought it on themselves." No word yet on whether Schaefer plans to push wheelchair-bound people down staircases as a follow-up.

It's been whispered for years that Schaefer is losing his marbles, and the whispers are starting to become louder. Even Schaefer's running buddy, Governor Helmethead Ehrlich, refused to come to the comptroller's defense, pointedly refusing public comments. Schaefer's slogan is: "He says what you think." Perhaps now he should change that to "He says what the little voices in his head tell him to."

- Speaking of politicians losing their marbles, what in the world is going on with Senator Jim Bunning of Kentucky? The 72-year-old ex-major leaguer, running for re-election, has restricted his public appearances severely lately, which is probably fortunate for him, since when he has ventured to speak in public he's made a number of ugly and bizarre comments, such as saying his opponent looks like the son of Saddam Hussein or accusing the opponent's staff of assaulting his (Bunning's) wife.

Bunning had been expected to cruise to victory in this race, but his strange behavior has put him in danger of losing his seat. It's sad more than anything else to see a prominent man unravel in public like this. It's scenes like this that make me admire Fritz Hollings for retiring while he still has his wits about him.

By the way, the attempt by Bunning's staff to claim that Bunning is "as sharp and fit as he was when he pitched a perfect game for the Philadelphia Phillies in 1964" is pathetic. No reasonable person could believe that a 72-year-old senator is as fit as a profesisonal athlete in the prime of his career. His staff's absurd contention only makes Bunning's condition look worse.

- I received a couple comments worth noting from yesterday. First, from loyal reader Ensie:

I totally second that Burger King commercial thing. Ew. Ew. Ew. And, I saw Raising Helen. And before you even ask, yes, it sucked. I see a lot a bad movies. It's my "thing." :) In actuality, this movie turned out to be neither romantically comical or screwbally comical. Again, it just sucked.

Thanks for backing me up on my aversion to the King, Ensie. I'm not surprised about Raising Helen; they wouldn't have tried to re-package the movie for the DVD version if it had been a raging success in theaters. I'm a connoisseur of bad movies myself, but I think I'll pass on this one.

Second, more thoughts on a Negro League museum in DC from my main man Papa Shaft:

Thanks, Carl. Didn't mean to imply that there wasn't a Negro Leagues museum. And honestly, it's in a good place, in the home of one of the strongest (if not *the* strongest) Negro Leagues franchise.

I do think, though, that Washington would be a more visible place to have another museum honoring the Negro Leagues, because it's a much larger market, it has tourists out the yinyang who need to be educated about black Americans' contributions to the game, and perhaps most appropriate, DC is one of the capitals of black America. Combining a Negro Leagues museum with this sort of market, plus a sparkling new ballpark right on a Metro line would create a win-win situation for everyone, I think.

I couldn't agree more. I think a Negro-league museum in DC would be a smashing success, and would help turn the ballpark into even more of a positive force for the surrounding neighborhood. The team and the city would be foolish not to include the museum in the new park.

- Commentary on the last debate is all over the place, with no clear consensus on a winner. I am a little curious, however, about the people who seem to have scored the debate a victory for Bush just because he didn't vomit all over himself. If you think Bush won on the merits, fine, but giving the incumbent president a win just because Kerry didn't clean his clock this time?

(To be fair and balanced, I also don't understand Will Saletan's contention that Kerry hit a "grand slam" in this debate. Though I think you could reasonably conclude that Kerry won, to say he whipped Bush is implausible. I think Saletan got all caught up in his baseball analogy and wanted to close out his debate reviews with the home run, even if it didn't actually occur.)

That's all for today. See you tomorrow, presumably. (For the curious, I'm still 0-for-3 on the aspirin, backrub and tub soak. Maybe tomorrow.)

Quote of the Day
"I've always been a big supporter of the Constitutional right of the people to peaceably assemble and petition government for redress of grievances. It's just that I never envisioned it taking the form of thousands of people screaming 'you asshole!' at me."
-Lowell Weicker, former governor of Connecticut

Posted by Fred at October 14, 2004 10:51 PM
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