Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Omission or Historical Revisionism in "Argo"?

My wife, daughter and I enjoyed the movie "Argo" last weekend.  I personally recommend it: it maintained suspense up to the last, despite the fact that the events it was based on were well-known to us who were adults in the 1980's.  Ben Affleck did a fine job of acting and directing; Alan Arkin and John Goodman stole the show!

Now I am aware that the movie may have had some inclusions for dramatic effect (like the cars chasing the plane down the runway), but it ended with a historical note on what had happened to the 44 hostages held by the Iranis.

It reported the factual datum that they were released on January 20, 1980.  However, it failed to include the juxtaposition of the major event that took place on that day:

Ronald W. Reagan was inaugarated President of the United States.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Football Predictions Week Ten

Alabama 28  LSU  18 -- SEC Game of the Week

New Mexico State 28  Auburn 10

Florida 27  Missouri 14

Georgia 28  Ole Miss 14

Vanderbilt 32  Kentucky 7

Mississippi State 35  Texas A & M 17

Tennessee 32  Troy 26

Arkansas 33  Tulsa 7

UNA 33 Tarleton State 27

Last week:  6 right, 1 wrong

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Void Where Prohibited

Just to clarify, this is not to be taken as permission
to urinate on the steps of Congress,
however desirable that may be.

Friday, October 26, 2012

The Case for Not Voting

There's a mindset stridently advocated that, when an election looms, it is your duty to vote!  Tom Hanks would like to spank nonvoters and Amy Dunham compares voting to losing one's virginity.  Holy cow!  Then there's the old saw, "Bad politicians are elected by people who do not vote."   This is pure crap, in my opinion!  Bad politicians are elected by people who either voted without thought or voted strictly for their own selfish interests.

Anyway, this sort of argument should not be bought without thought.

There are options.  If, in your judgment, the two major parties came up with losers*, the conscientious citizen may do one of several things:

1.  Hold one's nose, and vote for one of the major party's candidates.

2.  Vote for a third party candidate.

3.  Don't vote.

This article from Slate makes a cogent argument:

Of course, if you're less concerned, or have obligations that would keep you from becoming informed, do everyone a favor by staying home.  You do less damage.

*Like in 2004.

Roll Tide on the Métro

It was several years ago; and I happened to be riding on the Métro in Paris, the famed and extensive subway system found there.  It's pretty safe, and used by huge numbers  of people.   If you don't mind the steps, it takes you to speedy subway cars.

Anyway, while riding on the Métro, there happened to be some other Americans riding.  They apparently were not feeling any pain, possibly from vino or cognac, and were a little noisier than most riders.  Parisians who had been working tend to be quiet.

When the car came to a stop, they yelled out "Roll Tide, Roll" in unison.   And they did this at the next stop too.

By the third stop, some of the other riders were shouting "Roll Tide" too; and this built up as the car approached.  It was like some seated, mobile flash mob.

After the possible Alabamians got off at the Cité exit (near Notré Dame), the remaining riders, Parisians and tourists, continued to yell "Roll Tide" at stops further down the line.   They were still doing that when we exited.

I didn't know there was such Bama sentiments in Paris.  Or possibly the "Roll Tide" episode appealed to the Inner Anarchist in the recesses of their Parisian hearts.

At least they didn't do the Rammerjammer cheer! 

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Football Predictions Week Nine

Alabama 27  Miss. State 20 -- Definitely the Game of the Week.  Bama is too balanced for the Bulldogs, who have surprisingly improved, and should win in a close one.

South Carolina 35  Tennessee 14 -- The Gamecocks are likely to be pissed after last week's loss, and take out their frustrations on the failing Vols.

Mississippi 27  Arkansas 20 -- Mississippi is showing signs of rebuilding.  Not so Arkansas.

Missouri 33  Kentucky 10 -- Just not Kentucky's year.  But their fans are hierbenating until basketball season.

Florida 21  Georgia 18 -- A close one; but the Gators will prevail.

Texas A & M  35  Auburn 21 -- Gene is just not having a good year.

Vanderbilt 20  Massachuetts 16 -- How did this get scheduled?

UNA is off before playing Tarleton State on Nov. 3.

Last week:  5 right, 2 wrong

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Public Art

The Muscle Shoals area will eventually wind up with four aluminum sculptures honoring the local music industry.  Here's the first one.  It made me cringe, but I'm not especially an esthete.

For the brave and stouthearted, here's an article talking about the concept behind these erections:

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Football Predictions Week Eight

LSU 28 Texas A&M 16 -- The Tigers are back!

South Carolina 24 Florida 21 --  Game of the Week.  The Gamecocks should bounce back.  THe can still win the SEC East.

Alabama 35 Tennessee 15 -- A solid win for Bama.  Hang down your head, Derek Dooley . . . .

Vanderbilt 31  Auburn 28  -- Auburn is having a rough season.  Losing to Vandy won't help.
Mississippi State 34 Middle Tennessee 7  -- Too much cowbell for Empty Ess You.
Georgia  37  Kentucky 17 -- No surprises here.

UNA 35  West Georgia 17 -- UNA bounces back.

Last week:   4 right, 2 wrong.  I left out 2 SEC games.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Ain't Democracy Frickin' Wonderful?

No, this is not going to be one of those opinion-laden diatribes regarding the Presidential election by some old fart; you must have encountered them live and on the internet up to your wazoo!  [However you imagine that feature to be.]

No, it's plain old neighborhood democracy in action.  The Homeowner's Association.

Last week the Board got together and voted to raise the dues by $25.  Now, it's not a big amount, so ole Duckbutt wil not have to stick up some filling station or rob some church's poor box to make ends meet.

No, it's a principle sort of thing.  Principles are something to practice in moderation; but I'm in favor of a level playing field.

Anyway, the issue that I'm in high dudgeon or bitching about is how it was done: by vote of the Board, with the proviso that the hoi polloi could negate it if 40 households voted in writing against it.

My wife, being quantitatively-minded, determined that there were 79 households in the neighborhood.

Not a majority of the votes cast; no, that would be too even-handed.  Only if the "antis" are more than half of the households involved.

It seems to me that there are five possible types of feelings on this, or any other matter that might require a vote:

1.  Strongly for it enough to vote "For."

2.  Okay with it, but not enought to vote.

3.  Neutral or don't give a damn.

4.  Kind of against it, but voting is too much effort.

5.  Strongly against it enough to vote "Against."

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Football Predictions Week Seven

Here's my picks for Oct. 13th.

Alabama 39  Missouri 10  -- An easy win for Bama.  Yawn.

Arkansas 31  Kentucky 14 -- Maybe the Hogs are back.  The Wildcats had their moment of glory against UT last year.  At least they have Ashley Judd to console them.

Ole Miss 27  Auburn 10-- Also-rans play.  Not well.
Florida 38  Vanderbilt 20 -- Florida is for real.

South Carolina 32  LSU 25 -- Game of the Week.  SC is the stronger of the two.
Mississippi State 35  Tennessee 17 -- MSU has a running edge here.

UNA 35  Valdosta State 13 -- I have some serious hatin' going on for the likes of Valdosta left over from UNA BB.  I hope Bobby Wallace turns 'em loose and the run up a score!

Last week:  4 right, 3 wrong.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Bong Hits 4 Geezers

If they would legalize marijuana for senior citizens, then we could have Bong Hits 4 Geezers.

Monday, October 1, 2012

Football Predictions Week Six

Auburn 35  Arkansas 31 -- The Tigers finally win one.  Arkansas lost its mojo.

LSU 28  Florida 22 -- The Tigers can't afford to relax on this one.

South Carolina 24  Georgia 17 -- Both teams had problems last week: South Carolina starting; Georgia with defense.  (Where was it against the medium-sized orange?)  But the Cocks are the best in the East, such as that is.  Still, Florida, Georgia, and SC are in a three-way tie right now.

Texas A&M 35 Ole Miss 18 -- An old-fashioned can of whoopass is opened here.

Missouri 27  Vanderbilt 17 --  It's MO, you know.  It's hard to take Vandy seriously.

Mississippi State 30 Kentucky 21 -- Kentucky might have a chance, though.  Still, I lean toward State; they have more cowbell.

UNA 36  Texas A & M Kingsville 18  -- The Javalinas lost their last three games.  This one should be easier for a rebuilding UNA team.

Last week, 6 right, 1 wrong.