Friday, September 29, 2006

Football Friday – Kim Etheridge: hot or not edition

One of the strangest (and silliest) weeks in recent memory ends with very few really intriguing matchups on the field. Let’s see if we can find something to talk about, shall we?


Ohio State @ Iowa – As mentioned in the DMN this morning, Iowa does not have a sterling record when playing the #1 team in the land (try 0-9-1). The game is in Iowa City, and the Hawkeyes have done pretty well there over the years. This sets up as a trap for OSU. I think the Buckeyes have too much, and if you’re going to force me to make a prediction, it’s OSU by 7 or less, but an upset here would not shock me.

Sam Houston State @ Texas – I guess some of the SH players will get to tell their grandchildren things like, “Back in 2006, I got knocked on my ass by Jamaal Charles.” This is pretty embarrassing. Can we get to the Big 12 schedule now?

Alabama @ Florida – Clearly, this is the Redneck Game of the Week. Florida should clean the Tide’s clock. I hear Alabama boosters have launched a desperate scheme to replace the Gators’ vaunted “Ade” with moonshine. Potentially a genius plan. The Swamp will, of course, be completely packed. I’d still take the under on real teeth, but probably the over on bad toupees.

SMU @ Tulane – My friend Bill attended both of these schools (Tulane undergrad and SMU grad) and is, therefore, the only person on the planet who has any interest in the outcome of this game. And I suspect he doesn’t have much himself.

Boston University vs the immortal soul of Dennis Gadbois – Perhaps the greatest wide receiver ever to come out of the state of Maine, Dennis lived in the shadow of fellow wideout Bill Brooks. If memory serves, Dennis did get a chance w/ the Patriots and may have even played a few games. I wonder where he is now…


Dallas @ Tennessee – The Titans are bad. The Cowboys are bad, but not as bad. Ergo, the Cowboys should win, right? Not so fast. How many questions do you think Bledsoe has fielded on the Titans’ secondary this week? How about in comparison to the number of questions he’s fielded on TO’s exploits? This game has trap written all over it. A good, well-coached team should rise to the occasion and beat the inferior opponent. I don’t think the Cowboys are good or well-coached. The Dark Side post on Monday will be much more entertaining if Dallas comes home 1-2. Here’s hoping…

New Orleans @ Carolina – We’ll find out a bit about the Saints in this one. They sure looked good on Monday night, but that may have been just pure emotion. Carolina isn’t what everyone expected, but they’re still pretty good.

New England @ Cincinnati – This is the kind of game the Pats win – on the road, against tough teams who wear bad uniforms.

Arizona @ Atlanta – I’m ready to see Leinart. I think he’s got the makings of a great pro QB, and the Cardinals sure have the receivers. Let’s get on with it, already.

Seattle @ Chicago – I guess Chicago is for real. I’m partial to Seattle, but this should be a good one.

Green Bay @ Eagles – This might turn into a good one. I think Philadelphia is lucky to get Green Bay on Monday night. On a random Sunday afternoon, Philadelphia could easily overlook the Packers. No one overlooks anything on Monday night.

Comedic Value Game of the Week – The NFL keeps giving us candidates galore: Minnesota @ Buffalo, Miami @ Houston, and Cleveland @ Oakland are all pretty silly, but the silliest has got to be Detroit @ St. Louis. Wow. Believe it or not, Fox is actually paying for the rights to televise this travesty. I’m just glad I’m not in a market which will be subjected to it.

Go (insert your team here)!

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

TO tries to top himself

Cowboys receiver and lightning rod Terrell Owens apparently attempted to kill himself last night, taking an overdose of pain killers. The story is still awfully confused, though no doubt it will get sorted in coming days.

I’ve taken my share of shots at Owens, and his brush with self-inflicted death does make me stop and reconsider a bit. On one hand, the guy is obviously not right, and needs help. On the other hand, he does seem to go out of his way to court controversy, and by doing so, pretty much ensures someone, somewhere is going to take some shots at him.

Regardless, I am saddened to see the predicted TO Meltdown occur, unfortunately in a way no one could have foreseen. I sincerely hope those around Owens, and Owens himself, don’t try to spin this as a “no big deal, he’ll play on Sunday” kind of thing. Unless this was the sickest of all possible publicity stunts, and I don’t think it was, Owens needs help. Football should be the furthest thing from his mind.

Unfortunately, I don’t know if the business of football will let him go that easily.

UPDATE 9/27/06 17:16: Or not. I think I'm believing TO here. It certainly wouldn't be the first time the Dallas police screwed up something big-time.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Worst injury ever

I saw the Joe Theismann leg-break, the Napoleon McCallum knee-hyperextension, and the Willis McGahee knee blowout. None of them hold a candle to this: A Chinese soccer player is out for the season with a split scrotum.

My career would be OVER.

Monday, September 25, 2006

Scariest warning sign ever

Here's an old Soviet-era warning sign that is pretty much guaranteed to keep unwanted intruders out.

The text reads: "Don't get in. You will be killed". If that ain't enough, the picture certainly speaks the international language of violence.

New battery technology: Cold fusion redux or the real deal?

Jalopnik is reporting that an Austin company called EEstor (no Web site to be found) has invented a new ceramic-based battery which will not materially degrade over time, will provide a huge amount of energy for sustained periods of time, and recharge ultra-fast.

If this is true (and it's an awfully big "if"), this technology addresses pretty much every shortcoming of the current crop of electric cars.

We've been led by the nose several times before (cold fusion is the most rapid to come to mind, but there have been many others), so it's hard to get really excited. However, wouldn't it be nice to tell Iran to go stuff their oil where the sun don't shine?

World's dumbest, er, smallest cellphone

Derek Zoolander's ultra-mini mobile phone is finally here. The Xun Chi 138 is too small for any human to actually talk into, much less dial.

Sorry, I'm not interested in a mobile phone I could accidentally suck up with the vacuum cleaner.

Low-intensity sports weekend

I want to apologize to all CIT fans. I flaked out on my Football Friday responsibilities, for which I am sorry. I also have to confess: Other than 15 minutes of forced-viewing of Seahawks-Giants, I didn't watch a lick of sports programming this weekend.

As it turned out, this was probably a pretty good weekend to skip, both in colleges and pros, as nothing really interesting happened in either place.

Regardless, no excuses, as none will do. I resolve to do better next week.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

For the home-office video-conference

I don't know about you, but when I work from home, it's shorts and a t-shirt. However, that's because my conferences are all of the voice-only sort. If I had a home video-conferencing set-up, I'd be MUCH less psyched about a day at home.

Well, no more. Some slacker geniuses somewhere have come up with the Half-Suit. It's business on top, and a party down below.

Rangers officialy out of playoffs

The Texas Rangers' loss to Seattle last night officially eliminated them from this year's playoffs.

My reaction: The Rangers are still playing? I thought the whole team quit out of disinterest back in August.

Jeff Skilling starting to hear voices in his head

Former Enron Chief Operating Weasel Jeff Skilling is starting to act a little loony. Well, you probably would too, with 30 years of jail time, potentially hundreds of millions of dollars in fines, and the fury of half of America hanging over your head.

Apparently, Jeff got busted for public intoxication in Uptown Dallas (one of the better results of urban renewal in Dallas) and was briefly held in the clink. He didn't resist arrest, darn it.

Previously, Jeff and his wife got into a bar fight in a NYC cigar bar, when he accused some of the patrons of being FBI agents.

I am sorry that Ken Lay is dead. I certainly don't wish death on these guys. However, I do wish some torment on them, and it looks like Skilling is getting a bit.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Internet service to Zimbabwe cut as govt has not paid the bill

Sad, broke Zimbabwe finds itself with little to no access to the Internet today, as Intelsat has almost completely choked off bandwidth due to an unpaid bill by Zimbabwe's govt-owned telecom.

Tel-One, the state-owned communications company, apparently owes Intelsat over $700,000. Given the state of Zimbabwe's economy, along with the recent currency devaluation (which was not a devaluation, according to the Mugabe govt), it's difficult to say where that much spare cash is going to come from.

Mugabe, by the way, blames the UK and other Western powers of conspiring against Zimbabwe. For what, he doesn't say.

Start mailing your checks to UNICEF and Oxfam. Zimbabwe is circling the drain, and it's not going to be pleasant when it goes down.

UPDATE 9/26/2006 11:43 CT: Tel-One has been bailed out by the Zimbabwe Reserve Bank, at least for now. Both the telecom and the bank say they have very low foreign currency reserves, so the reconnection to the Internet may be a temporary thing.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Tickle Me Elmo Extreme

Fisher Price has released the 10th anniversary Tickle Me Elmo toy, also known as "Elmo TMX" (not making that up).

This version, when tickled, rolls around, pounds the floor, and laughs hysterically. No word on whether it also wets it's pants.

My kids are, unfortunately, out of the Elmo demographic. Good luck finding one of these things if your kids are in the market.

Coup in Thailand?

The news sites are reporting tanks in the streets of Bangkok and rumors of a military coup attempt.

Thailand has long been the most stable country in SE Asia, but has been subject to coups in the past. This is VERY interesting from an academic standpoint, but it's MUCH too early to forecast the impact on the region.

Stay tuned...

UPDATE 11:08 CT: Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra is in NY at the UN today. He's declared a state of emergency. It can't be too terrible, however - he's leaving for home on Thurs, which is a day earlier than planned. If things were in total chaos, you sorta think he'd bail from the UN right away.

UPDATE 11:34 CT: The PM is addressing the UN today, rather than tomorrow. No word on when he's going home. I think the earlier article got it garbled.

Also, it appears certain that the military is taking charge. However, there are two (at least) factions within the military, one sympathetic to the PM and one opposed, and it's not clear which faction has acted. Things are liable to get really interesting when PM Thaksin attempts to return to the country

Monday, September 18, 2006

Funniest "Doonesbury" in ages

I'm a big fan of Garry Trudeau's Doonesbury. It's generally relevant and consistently amusing. It handles the darkest of subjects with humor, which appeals to me always.

Today's strip, dealing w/ BD's artificial leg, made me laugh out loud. Hilarious!

Hurricanes Gordon and Helene well out to sea

Just in case you thought we'd gone to sleep on the tropical weather front, here's an update from StormTrack: There are two minor hurricanes thrashing around out in the Atlantic at the moment. Hurricanes Gordon and Helene are both weaklings and are both tracking nowhere near land.

Radio your friends on container ships in the middle of the Atlantic to be on the lookout.

Tales from The Dark Side: Let’s Tap the Brakes, Folks

The Team We Love to Scorn managed to put together a pretty good effort last night, clobbering the ridiculous Washington Redskins, 27-10.

Much as it galls me to do so, let’s start by handing out some props. Bledsoe looked MUCH better than he did last week vs JAX. There were some flashes of a running game. Flozell Adams did not look quite as ready for the old-folks home. The defense toughened up, especially in the secondary. The multi-million-dollar kicker with the outrageous ego actually contributed a bit. Parcells and staff mixed it up pretty well – mostly conservative, but they took a few shots down the field as well.

All in all, a decent win. Nothing really impressive, but at the end of the year, it’s one in the win column.

Now, you didn’t tune in here to read the good news. And we’re not in the business of pointing out good news when it comes to Bondo Face and his minions. The glass is always half-empty here on the Dark Side, and usually it’s leaking all over the floor. This week is no exception. On with the bile!

To paraphrase the great John Lennon, I can’t believe the news today. Cowlishaw (need to be a CowboysPlus subscriber to read it), Gramps, Jub, everyone seems ready to crown the Cowboy D as the Greatest Defense Ever in the History of Ever. Huh?

I’ll grant you, the Redskins were able to do nothing on offense last night. But was that overpowering defense by the Cowboys? Or are the Redskins, in reality, one of the worst offensive teams in the NFL?

Me, I’ll go with the second choice. What do they have?

Brunell is clearly past his prime. Watching him scramble at the end of the first half was like watching a 60-year-old run thru a vat of pudding. Either he or the Redskins’ staff seemed afraid to have him drop back to throw. The Skins’ passing game is horrendous.

Running back? Maybe with Clinton Portis in there, they’ll be able to muster some sort of running game to keep the defense honest, but that sure didn’t happen last night. The complete lack of a ground game let the Cowboys sell out into pass coverage all night, making heroes out of last weeks goats in the secondary.

No, I’m not falling for the “Doomsday III” comments from Jub this morning. This is the same defense that got shredded by a competent, but not awe-inspiring, offense in Jacksonville last week. The fact that they were able to shut down one of the worst offenses in the league last night doesn’t prove anything to me.

And while we’re on the subject of “competent” offense, is anyone ready to say the Cowboys’ offensive line is really ready for prime time? I will give them credit for keeping Bledsoe alive, and for opening holes enough to allow 130+ yards of rushing, but just how good is the Washington front 7? I don’t know, and neither does anyone else at this point. Think the prognosticators have it right? That’s the same bunch which proclaimed Chris Simms ready for a breakout year, Carolina as a Super Bowl favorite, and San Francisco as the worst team in the league. They don’t know any more than I do.

So, now we’ve got a bye week, followed by a trip to Tennessee. That game isn’t going to tell us much either, as the Titans are in the running for Worst Team in the NFL, along w/ the Redskins. We won’t know much of anything about this Cowboy team until Oct 8, when they visit Philadelphia.

Go enjoy your bye week, Cowboy sheep. Bask in that warm glow of a victory. I think it’s fool’s gold, but we’ll see…

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Pope apologizes, Muslims still pissed, and I'm not surprised

I've largely stayed away from the "Pope quotes a medieval text, Muslims get offended" imbroglio, as I have thought since the story broke that it was a ridiculous waste of time. However, as with many seemingly trivial things which involve the Muslim world, it just won't go away.

The latest is Pope Benedict's apology for offending Muslims by quoting something that was written 1000 years ago and which he specifically said (at the time and about 100 times since) did not reflect his own views.

Predictably, Muslim leaders who have been demanding an apology are not satisfied. They want the Pope to apologize for quoting the text, rather than for offending Muslims. It seems like splitting hairs to me, but apparently not to them. Riots in the streets of the Islamic world, followed by screaming protests in Western capitals, would not surprise me one bit.

The double standard and hypocrisy in the Muslim world is enough to gag a brontosaurus. The Iranians hold a Holocaust cartoon show, and you hear NOTHING from Muslim leaders. The Pope says something that takes a lot of creative thinking to turn into an offensive statement, apologizes, and they're still pissed.

Muslims (at least some) feel the West is "anti-Islam" and the War on Terror is, in fact, a War on Islam. While I disagree with both statements in the strongest possible terms, hypocritical acts like this one make it awfully difficult for the average guy in the West to feel much compassion for Islam.

UPDATE 9/18/2006 11:46 CT: Yep, here we go. I think this is called "being unreasonable".

A Ranger trade that didn't work out so well

Former Ranger Alfonso Soriano became just the fourth player in history to join the 40 homer-40 stolen base club last night.

You may recall the Rangers shipped Soriano off to Washington before spring training and received often-injured and mostly-ineffective center fielder Brad Wilkerson in return.

I know I'm breaking the first rule of trades, which is "Don't look back" and I mostly supported the trade at the time. However, it's difficult not to wish for a do-over on this one.

Congrats, Alfonso. I'm happy for your success.

Friday, September 15, 2006

UN Security Council to discuss Burma

In a long-overdue move, the UN Security Council has voted to put Burma on it's formal agenda. This move allows any member state to bring up discussion on the subject, and it permits the Security Council secretariat to ask for regular reports.

The US, citing Burma's refugee crisis, narcotics trade, AIDS problem, and human rights situation as "destabilizing" Southeast Asia, sponsored the vote. Ten countries voted for the resolution, four voted against, and one abstained. China, leading the opposition, called the resolution "interference" and labelled it "preposterous".

It's absolutely shocking that it's taken this long for the Security Council to make this move. Better late than never, I suppose. Hopefully, it's not too late.

Football Friday - Man, I Need Some Sleep Edition

An 0400 wakeup, an 0630 flight to Austin, and a full day of fun with the CEO of the new company, and I am beat. However, a Friday is not complete without a weekend football preview. We've got some outstanding college matchups and the usual NFL early-season sorting out, so let's get to it...


LSU @ Auburn - Back in the Pat Dye/Bo Jackson days, I was a huge Auburn fan. I'm still kinda partial to them. They've got a big test in LSU this weekend, but I think they're up to it. LSU gets 3, and I think Auburn has no trouble covering it.

Michigan @ Notre Dame - This seems like a game that should be played in mid-November on a grey, rainy, 35 degree day, not on the 3rd Sat in Sept. Regardless, I'm starting to think the Irish may have a little something.

Nebraska @ USC - For some reason, everyone but Vegas is giving the Cornhuskers a chance. Uh, I don't think so, buddy. I would go USC, even if it means giving up 19 points. Don't f*** with Vegas, baby.

Florida @ Tennessee - This is my Redneck Game of the Week. The Vols get 3.5, and I would take some of that. I think those nutty boys in orange win the game. In the much-anticipated pre-game festivities, I like the Tennessee varsity demolition derby team to take their counterparts from Gainesville, four fenders to two. Take that one to the bank.

Clemson @ Florida St - Runner-up for Redneck Game of the Week, this one holds very little attraction, as the Seminoles appear to suck this year. You might tune in to count the pairs of bib overalls you see, or perhaps play America's favorite party game - Name That Inbreeding.

OU @ Oregon - I have my doubts about the Sooners. This game should answer some questions. I think OU travels a long way for nothing, but I would love to be wrong.

A&M vs. Army @ San Antonio - If I were an Aggie, I would enter the Witness Protection Program out of shame over my team's non-conf schedule. This sort of scheduling really ought to be against the law. God is watching, Aggies. As punishment, you will get blown out by Baylor. Just you wait.

Texas @ Rice - The 'Horns are exempt from the above criticism for obvious reasons: They had the stones to schedule Ohio State last week. A patsy like Rice should be just what the doctor ordered to get Texas on track for 11-1.

Boston University vs. John Brady's laundry bill - A credit to scholarship spares everywhere, John won the honorary Cleanest Terrier Uniform of the Season at least twice (1983 and 1984). Congratulations, John, from the Sleeper Hall 4th Floor Welcoming Committee.


New England @ Jets - The most-heated rivalry on the East Coast will once again pit Ace vs Joe in a San Diego sports bar. Keep it clean, boys. The Jets get 6, but it won't help them.

Pittsburgh @ Jacksonville - The Jags are only getting one and a half. They are not that good, folks. They may have looked impressive last week, but they were playing the friggin' Cowboys, for God's sake. A 14 point Steeler victory will tell us a lot about Pittsburgh, Jacksonville, and Dallas.

Arizona @ Seattle - Since when does Seattle get an extra exhibition game?

Cleveland @ Cincinnati - Two places I never want to visit. The Bengals may actually cover the 10.5.

Washington @ Dallas - Two ancient QBs, two faltering offenses, and two reasonably decent defenses - this may be the first 0-0 tie ever recorded in the history of the NFL. I'm SHOCKED to see the Redskins getting 6 - it appears even Vegas is buying into the Cowboys' fraud.

Comedic Value Game of the Week - Finally, a clear-cut winner. St. Louis @ SF is probably against the Geneva Convention. Here is one compelling argument against buying the NFL Sunday Ticket.

Go (insert your team here)!

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Football Friday revisited

Just for the halibut, let’s take a look at how my prognostication worked out.


OSU @ Texas – Right. Unfortunately. Colt McCoy may turn out to be the greatest thing since Norm Van Brocklin, but he needs to get a few of these under his belt first.

PSU @ Notre Dame – Right

UGA @ South Carolina – Righty right.

Arizona @ LSU – So very, very wrong.

Texas Tech @ UTEP – Right enough. Not 90 points, but 70 anyway.

SMU @ North Texas – Boredom beat Tedium by five yawns instead of two. That counts.

U LA LA @ A&M – Ags are so proud. Not.


Cowboys @ Jags – Can I get an “amen”?

Cincinnati @ KC – I’m telling you, the Bengals are serious.

Vikings @ Redskins – Highlight of the night in DC was TomKat. And my pick. Yay, me.

San Diego @ Oakland – I sure did get a good night’s sleep. Thanks, ESPN.

Eagles @ Houston – Don’t get too excited, Philly. It’s only friggin’ Houston.

Bills @ Pats – Zowie. And they're off...

SF @ Arizona – Turned out to be a lot more fun than expected. Nice stadium, btw.

Just trying keep it all honest.

Greetings From the Dark Side

What an exciting weekend it was here on the Cowboys’ Dark Side. What started out as something all Dark Siders fear and loathe turned into a celebration of all that is miserable with regard to The Team We Love To Scorn.

I’ll certainly admit the first two Cowboys’ drives of the season made me queasy. As Bledsoe methodically drove his team up and down the field, I thought, perhaps, it might be a long season for Those Who Wish Failure on the Cowboy, rather than the long season I had predicted for the sheep.

But it turned out the football gods were merely toying with Bondo Face and the Pear-Shaped Football Genius. The Team We Love To Scorn played down to their proven abilities during the final three and a half quarters, the offensive line sprung more leaks than a Louisiana levee (sorry, it’s just too easy to pass up), Bledsoe did what he does when the pressure is on, and even the vaunted and much-over-rated defense got it’s head beaten in.

So much to savor…

Let’s start with the 800 lb gorilla which gets shockingly little play in the paper or on the talk shows: The offensive (and I mean that in EVERY sense of the word) line. Flozell Adams was supposed to be the savior of this entire group, the real difference maker whose absence doomed Bledsoe to 49 sacks last year. Folks, if you’re counting on Flozell Adams to plug the gap this year, keep counting. Adams could barely get out of his stance before Jacksonville D linemen blew past him. And Adams was only the most visible offender. Bledsoe was hurried, the running backs had no where to go, and it generally looked like a repeat of the dark days of 2005 out there.


And how ‘bout Drewzilla himself? I, and many others, think he got hurt early on. I hope so, for his sake, because he was a shell of his previous self. Poor throws, poor decisions, no mobility, all the signs of a QB in major decline. And now, because of Bledsoe’s subpar performance and the Pear-Shaped Football Genius’s love of discomfort, we find ourselves in the most ridiculous QB controversy ever. Cowboy sheep, do you REALLY want Tony Romo taking over after ONE game? Could we please get serious here? Talk to me after Bledsoe stinks it up for at the very least one or two more games. Talk about knee-jerking. Jeez.

Let’s finish up today’s swim through the Dark Side by discussing the defense, shall we? Did we think this was a Super Bowl-caliber defense? We did? What were we smoking? Why didn’t we save some to smoke later?

The defense got shredded by a rather pedestrian offense. The Jaguars tried hard to give the game to the Cowboys. Why Dallas didn’t graciously accept and go home is beyond me.

Now it’s on to the hated Redskins, who visit the Partially Domed Rathole on 114 this Sunday night. Mark Brunell has had it, as has Joe Gibbs, so the Cowboys have a reasonable shot at this one. Since Little Danny Snyder elicits more despisement (?) than even Bondo Face, I may have to pull for the Cowboys.

Or maybe I’ll gargle with battery acid instead.

Well, that’s enough bile for this week. Tune in next week as the Dark Siders pose head-scratchers such as: Does the Pear Shaped Football Genius eat fruit, or is that cannibalism? Does Bondo Face have one of those old grandfather clock keys in the back of his head which he gives a couple of cranks to tighten up his face each morning? Does Drew Bledsoe ever look longingly at one of his hunting rifles and think to himself, “I know I can make it look like an accident”? Does Flozell Adams do a Stuart Smalley-type Daily Affirmation while looking in the mirror? If not, should he? And, finally, does anyone on this defense really want to be here? All this and next on Tales From The Dark Side.

Saturday, September 09, 2006

Saturday morning silliness

Real quotes from real courtrooms. Hey, I got them from the Internet, so they MUST be true.

Q: What is your date of birth?
A: July fifteenth.
Q: What year?
A: Every year.

Q: This myasthenia gravis - does it affect your memory at all?
A: Yes.
Q: And in what ways does it affect your memory?
A: I forget.
Q: You forget. Can you give us an example of something that you've forgotten?

Q: All your responses must be oral, okay? What school did you go to?
A: Oral.

Q: How old is your son - the one living with you.
A: Thirty-eight or thirty-five, I can't remember which.
Q: How long has he lived with you?
A: Forty-five years.

Q: What was the first thing your husband said to you when he woke that morning?
A: He said, "Where am I, Cathy?"
Q: And why did that upset you?
A: My name is Susan.

Q: Sir, what is your IQ?
A: Well, I can see pretty well, I think.

Q: Do you know if your daughter has ever been involved in the voodoo occult?
A: We both do.
Q: Voodoo?
A: We do.
Q: You do?
A: Yes, voodoo.

Q: Now doctor, isn't it true that when a person dies in his sleep, he doesn't know about it until the next morning?

Q: The youngest son, the twenty-year old, how old is he?

Q: Were you present when your picture was taken?
Q: Was it you or your younger brother who was killed in the war?

Q: Did he kill you?

Q: How far apart were the vehicles at the time of the collision?

Q: You were there until the time you left, is that true?

Q: How many times have you committed suicide?

Q: So the date of conception (of the baby) was August 8th?
A: Yes.
Q: And what were you doing at that time?

Q: She had three children, right?
A: Yes.
Q: How many were boys?
A: None.
Q: Were there any girls?

Q: You say the stairs went down to the basement?
A: Yes.
Q: And these stairs, did they go up also?

Q: Mr. Slattery, you went on a rather elaborate honeymoon, didn't you?
A: I went to Europe, sir.
Q: And you took your new wife?

Q: How was your first marriage terminated?
A: By death.
Q: And by whose death was it terminated?

Q: Can you describe the individual?
A: He was about medium height and had a beard.
Q: Was this a male, or a female?

Q: Is your appearance here this morning pursuant to a deposition notice which I sent to your attorney?
A: No, this is how I dress when I go to work.

Q: Doctor, how many autopsies have you performed on dead people?
A: All my autopsies are performed on dead people.
Q: Do you recall the time that you examined the body?
A: The autopsy started around 8:30 p.m.
Q: And Mr. Dennington was dead at the time?
A: No, he was sitting on the table wondering why I was doing an autopsy.

Friday, September 08, 2006

Ah yes, Football Weekend at last

Fellow gridiron fans, our patience has been rewarded. College football presents a couple of doozies, and the pros play for real this week. Let’s dive straight in:


Ohio State @ Texas – As stated here previously, this may be the biggest game EVER played in Austin. We don’t know anything about young Colt McCoy (greatest name for a Texas QB ever!) yet, and Coach Tressel has basically stated that OSU is going to make him win the game. On the other hand, we know quite a bit about Ohio St QB Troy Smith, and it’s all pretty scary. Ohio State gets 2.5. The heart says go w/ the Longhorns, but I’m afraid the head says Ohio St. I hope I’m wrong.

Penn St @ Notre Dame – If you’ve read previous installments of CIT, you know how I feel about The Nittany Geezer. The atmosphere in this one will be classic, but I doubt the game is. Notre Dame big.

Georgia @ South Carolina – The big-time Redneck Game of the Week returns. Spurrier be damned, Georgia rolls. The highlight of the afternoon promises to be the big Fiddle-Off at half time. Don’t bother bringing your shoes to this one.

Arizona @ LSU – What is so great about Louisiana? Why is Arizona getting 15 points? I think LSU will win, but Mikey Stoops has the Wildcats going in the right direction. I’ll take Arizona and all those lovely points, thank you.

Texas Tech @ UTEP – Sure to be a shoot-out of the highest order. Texas Tech should win, but don’t be surprised to see 90 points scored in this one.

SMU @ North Texas – A regional game of some interest, in that these teams are sorta evenly matched. I like Boredom over Tedium by two yawns here.

U LA LA @ A&M – Have I mentioned how much I hate non-conf games like this one? Coach Fran is determined to go into the Big 12 season undefeated. Scheduling exhibitions like this will guarantee it. If I were an Ag, I’d be embarrassed to show up for this while the T-Sips are playing a real game down the road.

Boston University vs. the ghost of Keith “Rocko” McLaughlin – Keith is probably a senior VP at Merril Lynch by now, and I’m sure he’s an absolutely swell guy to work for. Keith, if you happen to read this, please remember I’m your biggest fan.


Let’s preface the pro section by stating unequivocally that we have no idea who’s got anything. All we’ve got are reputations. So, essentially, all of this represents Wild Ass Guesses of the highest order.

OK, caveat in place. Onward:

Cowboys @ Jacksonville – The Cowboy’s season will come down to one thing and one thing only: The offensive line. If the line has improved (and not just a little, I mean improved substantially), all will be peachy at Valley Ranch. TO will be viewed as “colorful” and the Pear-Shaped Football Genius will get huzzahs from across the land. If the OL in any way resembles last year’s train wreck, none of the other crap will matter one bit. The jury is out, but I think it’s going to be a LONG year for Cowboys’ sheep.

Cincinnati @ KC – I want to believe Carson Palmer is the next big star in this league. This is a great test. I have faith in the Bengals, despite their undisputed crown in the Worst Uniforms in All of Football competition. These guys seriously need a fashion makeover.

Colts @ Giants – I’ve hardly watched TV this week, and yet I’m sick of the Peyton-vs.-Eli thing. The elder Manning has all the horses. Now all he needs to do is win a few in January. Fortunately for all Indy fans, this is only early Sept.

Vikings @ Redskins – What a crap game for the first Mon night of the season! Mark Brunell would have trouble starting for the Frisco High Raccoons at this point. And who plays QB for Minnesota? One of those faceless Johnon guys, right? I will be pulling for the Vikings, but that’s only due to my undying hatred of the Skins and their lousy fans.

San Diego @ Oakland – The confusing second Monday nighter this week is not much better. San D should have this one won before halftime, allowing all of us in the Eastern and Central time zones to get a decent night’s sleep.

Philadelphia @ Houston – Reggie Bush should run wild on the Eagle’s suspect defense. Oh, wait. Houston passed on the greatest running back to come out of college since Bo Jackson. Never mind. What on EARTH were they thinking in Sweat City? Eagles in a romp.

Buffalo @ Patriots – The road to the Super Bowl starts here for the fascist Patriots. If Crash Davis were on this team, he’d tell Tom Brady to stop throwing all those perfect passes.

The Comedic Game of the Week will return next week, when we can start to identify the comedians. I sorta like SF @ Arizona this week, but it’s big stuff in the Valley of the Sun, what with Edgerrin James and the new palatial stadium making their debuts.

Go (insert your team here)!

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Schumacher to retire?

The unbelievably great Michael Schumacher, who has won a record 7 Formula 1 titles, is apparently set to announce his retirement after Sunday's Italian Grand Prix.

If he's going to do it, Monza, the temple of Italian and Ferrari racing, is the place for it. And, due to his recent surge, Schumi has the chance to go out with Championship #8.

If you're not up on Formula 1, this is pretty simillar to Jordan retiring from the NBA or Pele retiring from soccer/football. No exaggeration.

First big college football weekend of the year

Oh dear, I know I'm early this week, but our upcoming college football weekend is a biggie. It's early, and there are still some terrible games on the schedule (Nicholls State @ Nebraska or Eastern Washington @ West Virginia, anyone?), but there are a couple of seriously juicy matchups as well.

With no further hubbub:

At 3:00 Central on NBC, we have Penn State at Notre Dame. My feelings on Joe Paterno have been documented previously, but, for the record, let me reiterate: OVER RATED. Would someone please tap him on the shoulder and say something like, "Dude, please let someone less than 100 years old take over"? What has he done in the last 10 years? The man needs to be living in south Florida, wearing plaid slacks pulled up to his nipples, driving a silver Cadillac, and eating dinner at 4:30 in the afternoon, not coaching D-1 football.

On the other hand, the Irish are on the way back. I'm not normally a big Notre Dame backer, but I like them big in this one.

Later on (8:00 Central, to be exact) there's Ohio State at Texas. This is the biggest game played in Austin in at least 25 years. Maybe ever.

Last year's game in Columbus was a where I (and most of the nation) started putting the terms "National Championship" and "Texas Longhorns" together. I'll admit I didn't believe it at the time, but it's where I first thought it was possible.

This year's game is so tough to call. Vince Young was SO important to last year's team, it's difficult to say how much is left without him. There's no question in my mind that last year had more to do with Vince than it did with anyone else, Mack Brown especially. And now, with Tarrell Brown picking the worst possible time to thug out, and young Colt McCoy feeling like Superman because he whupped up on feeble little North Texas, here comes the #1 team in the land. Oh dear.

The TiVo is getting a workout this weekend. Bring it on!

Dems vote effort on Rumsfeld fizzling out

Shockingly, Senate Democrats' efforts to bring up a non-binding, yea-or-nay vote on Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld are dying on the vine.

This was a time-waste of the highest order from word go, as the vote was to be non-binding, and even the Dems agreed that it had nothing to do with the legislation at hand - a Pentagon spending bill.

I know why stuff like this happens, I understand the political gamesmanship behind it, and I'm not a fan of Rummy's, but it still gives me tired-head to read these stories. Don't we have more important things to do than to waste energy on debates which all involved already agree won't change anything?

Iranians find cure for AIDS

According to UPI, Iran's Ministry of Health has released a statement claiming to have made a medical breakthrough in the control of the symptoms of AIDS.

This is GREAT news. Especially since it comes on the day before the international community meets to start talking sanctions due to Iran's refusal to stop enriching uranium.

Wait. You don't think the two are related, do you?

Sunday, September 03, 2006

Tropical depression #6

A new tropical depression has formed WAY out in the central Atlantic. It's far too soon for any real guidance on possible strength or track, but the hurricane nerds among us (which apparently includes me) are interested in any old thunderstorm at this point.

UPDATE Wed 9/6 16:33 (Eastern): TD Six is now TS Florence. Not much of a storm at the moment, and likely to stay well offshore, it still bears watching. Repeat after me: Hurricane forecasting is an inexact science, blah, blah, blah.

What comes around, goes around - lesson #733

The New Orleans Saints have cut reserve QB Adrian McPherson. Not news in itself, but I couldn't help but notice McPherson has had all kinds of legal problems, primarily involving gambling on Florida State games while he was QB there. No one is saying he threw any games, but...

So, here's the karma part. Why didn't McPherson make it in the NFL? Lack of talent? Well, we don't really know, because he didn't get on the field much during preseason. Why not, you ask? The press release tells you all you need to know:
The Saints also cut fourth quarterback Adrian McPherson, who was
injured when a mascot hit him with a golf cart in the Saints' opening preseason
game in Tennessee.

Saturday, September 02, 2006

Video: 16 buildings demolished simultaneously

Ah, the joys of YouTube. Today's highlight: A video (from multiple angles) of 16 buildings being demolished by explosives at the same time.

The sound was probably the coolest (or scariest) part of the event, but YouTube sound is always crap, so you can't tell from the video. It's still pretty neat (or terrifying, I can't tell).

Hezbollah "victory" in cartoons

Our friends at Vital Perspective have a round up of editorial cartoons celebrating Hezbollah's "victory" over Israel.

In case you hadn't noticed, VP is sorta pro-Israel. Which, by the way, is fine with me.

Friday, September 01, 2006

Upgraded to the new Blogger

I've been invited to the new Blogger Beta, and have just upgraded CIT. I'll be adding labels to posts when I get the chance.

I'd appreciate any feedback you've got on the new setup, or the any component of the blog!

First Football Friday of the season

It may still be 100+ degrees here is DFW, but College Football Nation is back in the DMN this week, so fall MUST be right around the corner. We'll start looking at the pros next week, when the games actually mean something. However, there is a full schedule of non-conference college games this weekend, meaning lots of cannon fodder for the big boys.

On with the hilarity:

USC @ Arkansas - As is the case with many of the big-time programs, USC lost almost all their stars to the draft. Regardless, I like the Trojan scrubs against a team made up of the best Arkansas players from the last 15 years. Arkansas gets 8 points, and I gotta tell you, if I was still betting, I'd be all over this one.

Notre Dame @ Georgia Tech - While we're on the subject of tantalizing point spreads, Chan Gailey's boys are getting a mere 6.5 here. Brady Quinn and Co will have this covered before the first TV timeout.

North Texas @ Texas - On the other side of the coin, Texas spots the Mean Green 41 in Austin. Sure, Texas wins big. Sure, UNT is not in the same league as the mighty Longhorns. But 41 points in the first game of the year? Gimme some of that.

UAB @ Oklahoma - The first game of the post-Rhett Bomar era. The Sooners still have Adrian Peterson, and Paul Thompson may remind us of Switzer-era OU scrambling QBs before he's done. I have a semi-man-crush on Bob Stoops, so I'll be a Sooners booster every week except for the Red River Shootout. Just so you know where I stand.

The Citadel @ A&M - This, right here, is what I hate about non-conference. The Citadel, which is no doubt a fine institution of higher learning (or not), does not belong on the field with a Big 12 team, even the Aggies. I can't even find a point spread on this one. Hell, A&M ought to hang half a hundred on 'em by halftime. Ridiculous.

Memphis @ Mississippi - This is probably the Redneck Game of the Week, which tells you all you need to know about early-season college football scheduling. Ole Miss wins on the field, but Memphis cleans their clock in the post-game barbecue cook-off.

Boston University vs. the 1980 US Olympic Hockey Team - In one of the more confusing spectacles ever staged at Nickerson Field (and there have been a whole pile of confusing spectacles held at Nickerson Field, home of the USFL Boston Breakers back in the day), a bunch of 40-something white guys with aftermarket dentistry, dressed in full hockey regalia, including late-70s vintage skates, face off against the BU chapter of Alpha Phi, champions of the Sorority Flag Football League. I predict a hard-fought 0-0 tie, followed by a massive kegger which is broken up at 9:00 p.m. by Mace-wielding campus police.

Go (insert your team here)!

Cowboys off to a GREAT start

For those of us on the Dark Side, last night's final preseason game, which ended in a 10-10 tie with the Vikings, was chock full of promising signs.

The obvious ones are Mike Van de Velde (whoops, sorry - wrong sport) missing a couple of chip-shot field goals in OT, the torching of both corners on Minnesota's long TD drive, and the defense making Viking super-spare QB Brad Johnson into a front-runner for All-Pro laurels.

However, the sign that was most promising to me, but has gone largely unmentioned in this morning's coverage, was the manner in which the Vikings' defensive front had their way with the Cowboys' absolutely silly offensive line. We've mentioned the O line here before, so it comes as no surprise to us. The Cowboys' OL is still more-than-suspect. They enter the regular season guilty until proven innocent.

It's worth mentioning Bledsoe got his bell rung last night. Hopefully, it was nothing serious and he'll be OK for Jacksonville. It's good news for Cowboy sheep, er, I mean fans, that Romo has gotten some work this preseason and has looked pretty good. I am praying for Drew. I really like the guy and would hate to see him get permanently damaged by this terrible line.

TO behaved himself on the field, playing an unremarkable 15 to 20 plays and making one catch. However, according to those boys on The Ticket, The Incredible Me spent the annual Kick-Off Luncheon on his Blackberry, and had to be nudged by a teammate when Bledsoe took a shot at him from the podium.

Oh, it's going to be a WONDERFUL season!