I wrote back on October 4th my predictions for the awards to be handed out after the season. Now, for your reading pleasure, a review of my picks. After reading this you will come to realize, as I have, that I am smarter than everyone on Baseball Tonight combined.
AL Cy Young - See Santana, Johan.
NL Cy Young - I'm a little upset with this decision. I think Randy Johnson had the better year. Randy had the edge in ERA by about 0.4 runs and strikeouts by about 70. Another thing is that Johnson allowed less than 1 baserunner per inning (0.9 WHIP), while Clemens was at 1.16, still good, but not outstanding. Clemens recieved 4.79 Runs per game support, while Johnson only recieved 3.99. This is just shy of 1 run per game, and taken over the course of the season, Clemens recieved almost 19 extra runs of support. Even with this extra support, he only managed to win 2 more games than Johnson. There is no doubt that Johnson wins this award with any offense backing him up other than Arizona's. I have also recinded my comment about not giving the award to a guy on a sub .500 team. After a careful review of the evidence, I have concluded I was wrong. Please make a note of this, because I am rarely wrong and even more rarely will I admit it if I am. This is a momentus occasion in the history of the world and you should all feel privlidged to be a part of it.
AL MVP - Vladimir Guerrero won this award very deservingly. Mired in years of a mediocre Montreal franchise, Vlad finally had a chance to show what he could do with a little help. I still say that having had the chance to see Vlad in person was one of the great experiences of my baseball life. A sweet homerun to dead center on a ball about mid-shin and outside against the Brewers in Milwaukee.
NL MVP – Barry Bonds. Let’s see. He didn’t lead his team to the playoffs. His numbers are down from the previous year, again. His greedy style of hitting leads to a high number of walks.Instead of being ultra-selective at the plate, Barry should open up a little and swing a little more freely. A main reason that teams pitch around Barry is because they know he won’t swing unless he could hit a homerun with it, which is just about any pitch in the strike zone. By walking and being intentionally walked an inordinate amount of times, Barry is depriving his team of their best hitter, which he undoubtedly is. Barry’s demeanor at the plat is beginning to become counter productive. The enormous pressure placed on the other batters to drive Barry in creates batters swinging at junk in an attempt to score runs. Barry Bonds is one of the best players in our era, and I’m grateful to have had the chance to see him play in person, but this ass-kissing has to stop. Another good, solid season from Barry seems to automatically make him everyone’s default vote, seemingly without consideration for the seasons of others. Also, here would be a good place for the “Best” vs. “Most Valuable” debate, but I’m not going to get into that argument. I still stick by my original assessment of Adrian Beltre as NL MVP.
AL Rookie of the Year - Bobby Crosby. He seems like a good kid. That's really about all I have to say about him. He came in replacing a fan favorite and former MVP and did a good, not great, but good job. He seemed like the only person on the A's that wanted to make the playoffs.
NL Rookie of the Year – Jason Bay. I have to admit, I don’t know very much about the National League, and still less about Pittsburgh. In the interest of full disclosure, Jason Bay was on my fantasy team for a time in late July, but that was because I sorted by most runs scored in the past week and selected the highest OF. Still this is indicative of Jason Bay’s abilities as a player. To be a rookie in Pittsburgh and still get on base enough times to score the most runs out of all outfielders, or at least outfielders still available in the fantasy league, is a very impressive feat. I really don’t know much more about him than that. His numbers .282 avg with 26 HR and 82 RBI seem solid, and he led the team in RBI with the aforementioned 82.
AL Manager of the Year – Buck Showalter. I’d felt for a year or two that the foundation was in place for Texas to be a legitimate contender. This year that ability shown through, in no small part due to Showalter’s managing skills. I’d always liked Mark Texieria and Hank Blalock. This year both of them had very good years, and I think it’s in part having a manager that believed in them. His Rangers just missed out on making the playoffs, being competitive right up until the last week of the season.
NL Manager of the Year – Bobby Cox. I don’t think that his run to the playoffs with the team he had to work with would have been such a press-worthy story if it had not been such a big departure from the teams he had had to work with previously. It’s true that the Braves this year had been radically different from the teams of the season preceding, but that is not to say that his team was a bad team. If a team that had been bad had been built into this team, instead of being reduced to it by players leaving, I feel it would have been seen as a possible contender. It was a solid team most of the way around and the feat of the playoffs would not have been seen as an unreasonable goal if the team was on its way out off the cellar instead of down from the sky. None the less, this season showed why Bobby Cox is one of the best managers in baseball today. Working with what for him was a team of a less raw talent than he’d been given with to work recently, Cox still managed to win. He adapted his style of calling a game to suit the personnel with whom he had to work instead of trying to make its players fit his style of managing. Flexibility is a huge asset in managing a baseball team.
AL Executive of the Year - Theo Epstein. What a year Theo had. His best move, by far, was dumping Nomar's ass. I've never really liked Nomar. Sure, he's a pretty good player, but not ever as good as people made him out to be. What kind of guy can't heal from a groin injury? I don't think Nomar has now or has ever had the drive to lead a team. Dumping him off to the Cubs was a great move. Picking up Orlando Cabrera and Doug Mientkiewicz was brilliant. Really, just a nice job all around. And to top it off, rings for everybody.
NL Executive of the Year – Walt Jocketty. This guy didn’t do a whole lot during the season. The only noteworthy move he made was getting Larry Walker from Colorado in a waivers deal in August. I think this award is more for the past few years, where he’s been accumulating the players for the run for the title they put together this year. Don’t be surprised if he makes a move with one of his sluggers for a pitcher during the offseason.
AL: 3-1, missing on the Manager of the Year. Showalter was my close 2nd, so not too bad.
NL: 0-4. I agree with the choices except for Barry Bonds. Most were my 2nd or 3d choice.
Tuesday, November 30, 2004
I wrote back on October 4th my predictions for the awards to be handed out after the season. Now, for your reading pleasure, a review of my picks. After reading this you will come to realize, as I have, that I am smarter than everyone on Baseball Tonight combined.
So, last night I'm trying to kill time between the show I just got done with and the show I want to watch. 30 minutes of TV to fill. I said to myself "This shouldn't be too hard, for I am the channel surfing master." So, I flip quickly around all the channels I usually check, and I come across ESPN. I was hoping for something, anything, that didn't involve Jim Rome or Stephen A. Smith. Instead, I get some guy named Johnny skating around in something no guy named Johnny should ever have to wear. I swear at first I thought it was a cocktail dress. It did the thing where it went over one shoulder, but under the arm on the other side. To top it off, he had a sleeve on the under-the-arm side that button or snapped to it, and it was a totally different color than the rest of the outfit. I sat there momentarily, trying to decide if what I was seeing was real or if my eyes deceived me. After I decided that yes, a guy named Johnny was wearing a cocktail dress with a detachable sleeve, I settled on an episode of "The 5th Wheel". Ah, refreshing quality television.
Posted by Andrew at 4:46 PM
Monday, November 29, 2004
The lack of baseball news has led to an influx of non-baseball related entries here. Well, being as lazy as I am, I've finally accrued a backlog of Twins offseason moves that I can write a proper post about it.
Signings by the Twins:
Mike Redmond - 2 years, $1.8 Million. This is not a bad signing. Redmond was on the World Series Champion Marlins in 2003. While he sat most games behind Pudge, he still has been a team that has gone all the way in the playoffs. Redmond now represents the only WS Ring on the team. The only other WS apperance was by Joe Nathan in 2002 with the Giants. This also means negotiations with Henry Blanco have reached a point where Blanco will not be coming back to the Twins. Blanco's option was $750,000 for one year and Redmond is $900,000 per year, so the $150,000 increase is money well spent in my opinion. This signing does tell me something not so good though. To me, this signing means the Twins aren't optimistic about Joe Mauer's future. If they were optimistic about Mauer, they'd stick out a month or so with LeCroy and Bowen holding down the fort until Joe is ready. With a fairly large signing like this, I think the Twins aren't holding their breath on Joe. Of course, I'm also a cynical, grumpy person so I may be reading too much into it.
Juan Castro - 2 years, $2.05 Million. I'm not used to crap signings like this out of Terry Ryan. I'm a fairly big Reds fan. It'd be fair to say they are my favorite NL team. My dad grew up in Southern Indiana during the days of the Big Red Machine, so they were his favorite team. As is most often the case, I took after my dad in that respect. I was definately less than impressed with Juan Castro last year. I could post the stats up here if I wanted, but that's not what I'm worried about. This one is definately a gut feeling, one of those things that transcends statistics. When I heard this, I was definately not pleased. This has the potential to be the worst move of Terry Ryan's reign since I've been paying attention.
Jason Tyner - Minor League contract. I don't know much about Jason Tyner. I do remember seeing him with the Devil Rays at Comiskey when I was there with my cousin Rob. All I could think was "Isn't the Admiral's secretary on JAG named Tyner?" Well, he is, I was right. Then this June, I saw him playing with Durham when I was in Indianapolis at an Indians' game. I vaguely remembered him from seeing him in Chicago and the occasional Sportscenter mention of him being the player with the longest homerless streak in the majors. In 778 career major league at-bats, Tyner has a batting average of .257 and grand total of 0 homeruns. But evidentally he can field, so everything is ok. All the Twins need is another player who can't put one over the fence if they have to.
Signing of the Twins:
Cristian Guzman - 4 years, $16.8 Million. Still the only signing of a Twins player by anyone.
Posted by Andrew at 4:15 PM
About a week ago, I discovered that I acutally had a Target gift card. I ventured to said store to shop. I went looking for an MP3 player, and not finding what I wanted I left. On my way past CDs, Contraband caught my eye. I'd heard good things about them, and liked what I'd heard on the radio. I grabbed it and listened too it as soon as I got back. Since then, I've listened to it probably more than 15 times, mostly in the 700 miles to Illinois and back and Differential Equations.
The Velvet Revolver breakdown for you:
|Scott Weiland||Stone Temple Pilots||Lead Vocals|
|Slash||Guns and Roses||Guitar|
|Duff||Guns and Roses||Bass|
|Matt Sorum||Guns and Roses||Drums|
|Dave Kushner||Stone Temple Pilots||Guitar|
So, class G'n'R + STP --> VR. Now, some notes I've jotted down about this album:
- Scott Weiland does a good job on vocals. He conveys a sense of control through is voice.
- Guitar style is unquestionably Slash. Ifyou don’t like Slash, don’t bother with this CD.
- Harkens back to 80’s rock, but it is most undoubtedly a 2000’s band.
- A more mature Guns ‘n’ Roses and STP. Songs reflect a more learned writing, which is evidence of the growth of the band members. Songs stray from decadence and uninhibited wildboy feeling of previous bands.
- A little formulaic at times. At other times it is very original.
- Similar songs can be mistaken for cookie-cutter music. Upon successive listenings, each song’s distinct features begin to show through.
- Not quite the savior from ready-made alt-pop-rock that is pervading the radio that it was made out to be, but it is still a breath of real talent fresh air.
Songs to check out:
Fall to Pieces
Loving the Alien
Can do without:
Wednesday, November 24, 2004
I'll be leaving for Indiana this afternoon. While I'm there, I don't know how much I'll be able to update. My grandparents only have dial-up internet. If nothing else, I'll write my posts in Word and then copy and paste them to Blogger as soon as I get a chance. Have a good Thanksgiving, and don't you dare call it Turkey Day.
Posted by Andrew at 11:30 AM
Monday, November 22, 2004
So, tomorrow I have a test in Differential Equations. To say I don't do well in that class would be like saying Hitler wasn't very nice. Studying is seeming to go well. It always does. I'll read the book and say "Hey, I get it" until I see the test. Then I can't do any of it. Kopesky makes retarded tests, too. This combination will most likely yeild a test in the bottom 1/4 of the class. Instead of studying, I'm sitting here writing.
I'm still working on the Contraband review and MLB Awards recap, so look for them sometime over break.
Posted by Andrew at 9:15 PM
Saturday, November 20, 2004
So, I just got out of the shower. As I was shaving, I realized that my hair is starting to look like Lionel Richie's hair from the music video where the blind girl makes a sculpture of his head. It's starting to look mulletish in my opinion. But then again, I have a limited sense of style. This is where you, the loyal reader, come in. Help me decide what to do with my hair. Also, if able, please comment with a hairstyle I should go with, like "Brad Pitt in Fight Club" or something.
Posted by Andrew at 6:02 PM
Usually, I don't like professional basketball. The level of play which they display I find appauling. Poor shooting, worse defense, I just can't stand to watch the game be degraded like that. About the only NBA games I'll watch involve the Pacers. So, when I turned on SportsCenter last night, I was in for a treat. Turns out there was Rumble Royale in the middle of the game with the Pistons last night.
It all started with a hard foul on Ben Wallace. Instead of shooting his free throws like a man, he punched Ron Artest in the face. Now, Ben Wallace is a very large man, but he should know better than to punch Ron Artest of all people. I really think that the only words for Artest sometimes are "fucking nuts". After a hard fought game against the only other team in the conference that puts up a fight against you, emotions are going to be high. Artest just when beserk and all the benches cleared. After this died down, it should have all been over. But not when you are in Detroit.
Some real smart guy who probably thought he was tough, threw what looked like a cup of beer at Artest, hitting him in the chest. Artest had been restrained at this point and was acutally laying on the scorer's table, not doing anything. At this point, Artest would do what any unhinged professional athlete would do, he went after the guy who did it. The brawl spilled over into the stands. Fans, coaches, players, security, they were all in this huge mass of fists, beer, popcorn, and heads. It was the most insane thing I've ever seen.
Ron Artest, Jermaine O'Neal, Stephen Jackson, and Ben Wallace have all been suspended "indefinately" pending further investigation.
Posted by Andrew at 11:36 AM
Wednesday, November 17, 2004
With the Thanksgiving holiday quickly approaching, there is one little thing you can do to give you something else to be thankful for: Don't refer to Thanksgiving as "Turkey Day" and you can be thankful you aren't in the ER having your head removed from your ass. The only thing that pisses me off more at Thanksgiving than the Christmas commercials is people calling it "Turkey Day".
In a more uplifing note, keep a look out for these upcoming posts:
MLB Awards Review
Music Review: Contraband by Velvet Revolver
Posted by Andrew at 11:18 PM
Last night at the Vibe Awards, whatever the hell they're for, a man punched Dr. Dre in the face. The incident occured when the man asked Dre for an autograph. When Dre went to give the man the autograph, he got punched in the face. Unfortunately for the attacker, 50 Cent and G-Unit were right there. Now, for those who somehow missed out on this information, 50 Cent was shot 9 times in an attempted hit. He doesn't put up with crap. So, him and the rest of G-Unit proceded to beat the man retarded(er). To top this all this off, the dude got stabbed while he was getting beat.
Whether you like hip-hop or not, Dre's influence on the music industy is undeniable. He has been such a promenint figure in the rap community that it seems inconcievable that someone would do this. The fact he is respected by almost everyone involved in music didn't help the guy that wound up in the hospital. If you are going to attack someone, go after someone everyone hates, like Suge Knight. Speaking of Suge, there are rumors beginning to circulate that he put this guy up to it. While I don't think this is the case, I would also not put it past Suge Knight to do something like this.
Posted by Andrew at 1:03 PM
Tuesday, November 16, 2004
Today, Cristian Guzman signed with the "Expos". There is no way to describe the feeling I felt when I saw that his contract was for 4 years worth $16.8 Million. I think it was somewhere between crapping my pants and doing that thing where you throw up in your throat and taste a little, but don't really throw up. I cannot believe that a General Manager, someone who makes these decisions for a living, could believe Guzman is worth $4.2 Million per year. I might be persuaded to give him $3 or $3.5 Million, but that's pushing it. Guzman is a fine player, but I don't think he's worth quite that much. I am pleased that Jim Bowen, the DC GM, is taking steps in the direction towards improving the team with the signing of Guzman and Castillo.
As for the Twins, this means one of several things. First, but least likely, is that the Twins think Jason Bartlett is ready for the full time job. I don't think that after Bartlett's performance at the end of the season that the Twins expect him to fill the full time role. He's still a little green for my taste. More likely, Nick Punto or the esteemed Augie Ojeda will fill the role until such a time the Twins deem Bartlett ready to go. I like either playing short. I think Nick has proven himself a little more, but Ojeda hasn't gotten much playing time. The big question will be whether Nick can still throw well enough after coming back from his broken collar bone to make the longer throws from shortstop than second base.
Twins Free Agents: Blanco, Radke, Mulholland, Koskie
Posted by Andrew at 9:09 PM
Sunday, November 14, 2004
In this 33 hour span, I:
- Drove to Champaign-Urbana, Illinois, about 350 miles
- Got 4 hours of sleep in a hotel room. I hate hotels
- Got our asses kicked in 10 of 11 rounds of a quiz bowl where I knew absolutely nothing
- Didn't score any points
- Didn't even ring in for that matter
- Drove back to Des Moines, round trip 700 miles
- The ALL-TIME GREATEST thing I've ever been witness to - Mid-question, Joe turns to Quentin and says "I hate you, you fat fuck" in one of the best deadpans I've ever seen. The reader stops reading, the other team has "Oh. My. God." looks on their faces. The three of us found it very amusing. By the way, Joe neither hates Q, nor is Q fat.
- I met a guy who writes for Playboy
- I was the high scorer for the team in one round. I know you are saying to yourself, "But he just said he didn't even ring in." Here's the thing, Q and Joe both had -5 points for the round, and we finished with a score of -10. So, at -5, -5, and 0, I win.
- Joe's impression of Dr. Bartschat. About talking to his (Bartschat's) son Nicholas, "I'm am Klaus. I am the best physicist in the world. You are puny and weak" in a very bad German accent. You really have to know Dr. Bartschat for that to be funny.
- Q eating his King Size 3 Muskateers bar with two hands, starting a pseudo-Crocodile Hunter episode with Q as the subject. "Look at him, he's going at it with two hands!"
- I knew the answer to a bonus question to be "ventricles" because of the Scrubs episode that was on on Tuesday. Joe knew it too, but that's because he's done heart research.
Posted by Andrew at 9:34 PM
Friday, November 12, 2004
Yesterday, I woke up to get dressed. As I reached for a shirt, I thought better of it and put on my Johan shirt. As most of the baseball world knew, yesterday was the day Johan would win the Cy Young award. However, to my surprise, Johan Santana was announced as the unanimous selection for AL Cy Young. I figured at least one ass from Boston would have picked Shilling, but I was wrong. For those who don't know how the voting works, 2 baseball writers from each American League city, 28 total, submit their ballots for first, second and third place. A first place vote is worth 5 points, a second place worth 3, and third worth 1. Johan recieved all 28 first place votes for a perfect score of 140 points. Shilling was next, garnering 27 second place votes and a third, leaving him with 82 points. Someone actually had the idea to vote for Mariano Rivera as the winner. Perhaps only slightly less surprising, Joe Nathan got a last place vote for a total of 1 points. It was probably one of the Minnesota writers.
Compared to the NL voting, the AL voting was simple. Ths shows both how dominant Johan was and how difficult it was going to be to predict the NL race. No one in the NL really stuck out. Clemens, the eventual winner, and Randy Johnson were considered the front runners, but it was really up for grabs. Only 6 AL pitchers recieved votes, and 3 of them, Nathan, Pedro, and Fransisco Rodriguez, only got one point. In the NL, 9 different pitchers recieved votes. Only Clemens and Johnson got any real consideration. Oswalt, Schmidt, Zambrano, Pavano, Gagne, Sheets, and Lidge combined for 51 points, 46 points behind the second place Johnson and 89 behind the winner Clemens.
On an "Hey, that's kinda cool" note, Johan and Clemens both recieved 140 points through the voting. Johan got 28 first place votes, while Clemens got his 140 points by 23 first, 8 second, and 1 third place vote.
Posted by Andrew at 11:04 AM
Wednesday, November 10, 2004
I have no idea what to write about, but I've felt lacking in the posting department, so I'm just going to start pulling crap out of my butt.
Next semester should be a blast. I'm going to be taking Modern Physics, Advanced Lab, Intro to Sociology, Linear Algebra, Mathematica programming, Physics Seminar, and Differential Equations II. Modern Physics will be without a doubt the hardest class I've ever taken in my life. There is a lot of calculus, which I'm not particularly good at. Physics seminar is where I research topics I know nothing about and present them to professors who have degrees in the stuff. Then they get to ask me questions. I've already taken Linear Algebra once. Second time around should be much more fun. And Differential Equations II is acutally dependent on me passing Diff. Eq. I this semester, which doesn't look promising. I think I will end up failing one math class a semester until I graduate.
Today, Roger Clemens was announced as NL Cy Young winner. This is Roger Clemens' record 7th Cy Young award. This is his first such award in the National League. His other six came in the American League as a member of the Red Sox, Blue Jays, and Yankees. The Houston Astros are the 4th team with which Clemens has won the award, another record. Only 3 other pitches have 4 Cy Young Awards in total: Steve Carlton, Greg Maddox, and Randy Johnson. The American League Cy Young will be announced on Thurdsay. Johan Santana is considered the front runner, but Curt Shilling will recieve some attention after his dominating post season performance. Which is wrong, because the Cy Young is supposed to be about the regular season. If the Twins would acutally hit the ball, Johan would have won his second start in the playoffs too. Looking at the season numbers, Johan is head and shoulders above everyone else. Winning the World Series is nice for your resume, but it shouldn't give you the Cy Young. I'm more worried now that Boston won instead of when they were down 3-0. Wow. That seemed pretty good. Maybe I should switch my major to sports journalism. Then again, I probably broke every journalism rule there is, like the platant partisanship. Take that part out and it seems as good or better than the crap I read in USA Today or the Des Moines Register.
Today John Ashcroft resigned, stating "the Department of Justice would be well served by new leadership and fresh inspiration". Personally, I'm glad to see him go. This is the man who decided it was ok to circumvent every safeguard in the Constitution and go ahead and hold people prisoner without reason or access to council. He is also one of the main forces behind the push for increased anti-homosexual laws. The man is one of the most bigoted people in power in America. I'm glad to see him go.
So, I'm getting an MP3 player this week for Christmas. I want one for Christmas, but for Thanksgiving we are taking the 12 hour drive to Indiana to see my grandparents. It's tradition that Thanksgiving and Easter are at my grandparents house. So, instead of listening to my brother and sister bitch at each other for 12 hours, I get my MP3 player early. I don't know exactly which model I'm going to get yet. I'm leaning towards the Rio Nitrus. The iPod has way too much memory. It can hold up to 40 GB on the top model, and up to 4 GB on iPod Mini. Either way, that's too much. I only have 2 GB of music, and I don't even listen to all of it. The Nitrus has 1.5 GB of storage, which is more than enough. Joe has a Rio Carbon I've borrowed before and it's really nice. So I'm assuming Rio's other products will be similarly nice.
In the words of Sara! - That is all.
Posted by Andrew at 1:02 AM
So, yesterday Lindsey and I went to the art museum. Today we took a walk and talked about us. For the sake of not wanting all of my personal life all over the internet, I'm not going to tell you any details about said walk. All you need to know is we're just going to stay friends. I'm not sure how I really feel about this. For one thing, there is the inevitable let down. On the other hand, there is an odd calm that's come over me knowing how things are going to be. No more guessing and worrying. The cool part is that we should be able to hang out and enjoy it more without this cloud over our heads.
I wrote this the day of the walk. I didn't publish it just to make sure I didn't say anything I didn't want to out of emotion. I didn't, but I've been known to do that. Also, I wasn't sure if I wanted to tell anyone or if Lindsey wanted me to tell anyone. As it turns out, things are still cool between us. I'm really glad we did go out at least once. That's about all I have to say about that.
Posted by Andrew at 12:00 AM
Monday, November 08, 2004
As most of you know, I have an odd fascination with Oasis. I've come to the conclusion it is because they are the first band I can remember being big. In the mail today came (What's The Story) Morning Glory? I'm pretty excited. I takes me way back. I think I'll listen to it in Fort Awesome later. It'll be just like elementary school again.
Posted by Andrew at 4:21 PM
Yesterday, I went to a Quiz Bowl tournament at the University of Iowa. This acutally fulfilled one of the goals they made us come up with in 10th Grade English - Be on my college Quiz Bowl team. Being able to remember a crappy 10th grade english assignment is why I'm in Quiz Bowl. To put it bluntly - I rocked, the team didn't. I scored one less question than Joe, but he scored 4 negatives to my one. This mean that Joe finished 1/2 a question behind me, as negatives are worth -1/2 of a question. So in my first tournament, I took out the stud of Drake Quiz Bowl. I am, they tell me, the only person to beat Joe in a TRASH Tournament (the format of yesterday) and only the second person to ever beat him in a tournament, the other being Drew Fustin who has since moved on to grad school in Chicago.
As a team, we finished 1-9, good enough for last place. The scores were close on a couple, but we never seemed to have people get on fire early enough in the game to where it would matter. Someone would get on a roll, but if you are already down by 200 points, it won't make much of a difference.
I've not decided yet as to whether I'll stay in Quiz Bowl or not. There is a tournament next weekend in Illinois. I think I might go, but who knows? We'll see, won't we.
Posted by Andrew at 11:36 AM
Saturday, November 06, 2004
Today was quite the day. First off, my roommate Dylan moved out. For those who don't know, the 4 of us - Dylan, Seth, Mark, and Me - lived in a suite where there are 2 bedrooms and a common room with the couches and whatnot. Mark and Seth were in one room, Dylan and me in the other. As it happened, Dylan was the only one who didn't like to stay up until 1 AM. He was usually in bed by 10:30 or 11. He didn't get a lot of sleep. Also, we are loud and obnoxious and he couldn't study. So, he moved into a single room in Carpenter. I'm going to miss Dylan. He was a good guy. But, on the other hand, I get a whole bedroom to myself, including Fort Awesome.
So after that, I went to Quiz Bowl practice. This is because I'm a nerd at heart. But the non-nerd part of me cannot stand the people in Quiz Bowl. They have some of the most brash personallities I've ever encountered. About the only people I can stand are Q and Joe. Well, I got to practice late because I was harassing Lindsey and Sara at their radio show. When I got there they were on Question 8 of 20. I proceded to kick ass and get 8 of the last 12 right. This may sound cocky, but I kick so much ass at this format of Quiz Bowl. It's all useless trivia like who drafted Brett Favre or who Robert Duvall played in The Godfather (Atlanta Falcons and Tom Hagen). It ain't braggin' if you can back it up. There is a tournament at University of Iowa on Sunday I'm going to. After that, I don't know. I don't like many of the people or the formats of the other tournaments where they ask about literature and art. I'll probably just to the kind of tournament where I can enjoy it. No use in playing if I don't like it.
After dinner, me and Lindsey went to the Des Moines Art Center. I felt kind of out of my element. I don't know art. I acutally said "Hey, that looks like green fire!" in regards to one of the paintings. I don't know what Lindsey thought. She's the artist, not me. About the only thing I have over her was the ability to pronouce the French artist names. There was a work that included Fibbonacci Numbers, which I of course immediately recognized being the nerd I am. My favorite was acutally a movie of a guy jumping into a pool. It was shot in super slow motion, and then played back at regular speed. You could see each individual bubble moving. The way it was presented, I got thinking "how is that guy holding his breath that long" which I think is one of the intended reactions. The lighting was a harsh blue tint, which acutally made me feel kind of cold. Other than that, I just tried to keep the retarded comments to a minimum. I didn't really go for the art, I just went for the company. Honestly though, I had a really good time.
Posted by Andrew at 1:27 AM
Today, among other things that I'll post later (because Today was quite the day), I got a fort. My old roommate moved out because he liked to sleep at like 9:00, and the 3 of us didn't. So, I did some re-arranging and now I have a fort under my bed. I call it "Fort Awesome". I have curtains all the way around the bed so it's dark and I even have a mattress in it so I can sleep in there if I want to. Boys will be boys. With all this pressure that college brings, my inner child was getting almost no attention. I intend to rectify the situation. I'm pumped. If I like you enough, you can sleep over too. If I really like you, we can share.
Posted by Andrew at 1:20 AM
Friday, November 05, 2004
Now that the baseball season is over, I'm going to start a new bit. I pretty much stole it from VH1 and every other television station out there. It's called "What ever happened to: " where I found out where all those players you wondered what happened to, hence the name. Currently on the slate to be WEHT'ed: Bo Hart, Tony Fiore, John Jaha.
Comment with your suggestions for the list. I'll see what I can do.
Posted by Andrew at 11:49 PM
Holy Crap! What kind of stuff do you have to pull to be fired by a team that lost 111 games last season in only 4 day? Well, a DUI conviction, a misdemeanor harssament conviction, wife-beating, and bankruptcy and other assorted financial problems will do it.
Today, the Arizona Diamondbacks fired Wally Backman after being manager for only 4 days. My initial reaction was "Didn't they just hire him?" That changed to "How the hell do you get fired by the Diamondbacks that quickly?" Then I read the article, and said "Yep, that'll do it." This is seriously a new record. I cannot believe this. Even the worst team in the majors don't want this guy. You have to feel like a real winner.
Bob Melvin, recently fired manager of the 3rd worst team in baseball, will take over for Backman. Melvin was the bench coach during Arizona's 2001 Championship season.
Posted by Andrew at 1:16 PM
The Pacers won last night over the Caveliers in double OT. Otherwise, I don't give a crap. Athletes not playing defense and thinking you can't score between 10 and 20 feet is not exactly my idea of a good time to watch.
PS - Reggie Miller is still the man.
Posted by Andrew at 11:09 AM
Wednesday, November 03, 2004
For those of you who know me, I had a pretty pessimistic outlook on the election. I truly felt that the country was screwed either way. So, besides being screwed, here are my other thoughts.
The good things about Bush being re-elected:
- Not switching leadership in the middle of the war. Whether the war should have been started or not is now a moot point. We're there, live with it. Now the question is how to finish it off. Switching leaders mid-war almost never yields good results. Often the people who take over do so with a plan totally opposite the people who started the war, leading to undoing of what progress has been made.
- President's tend to do more for the greater good when they cannot serve again. Much of the first term is spent not trying to alienate the people that got them there so they can be re-elected. The second term, who cares if you upset your constituency, its not like they are good for anything anymore.
- The assault weapons ban isn't coming back anytime soon. I can finally get me an AK. I've always wanted one.
- He got elected straight up. No recount this time.
- More 9/11 bullshit. I want to know how long they can milk this. They took what used to be a tragic day that invoked strong feelings and has been turned into one of those things people have become jaded against and say "Would you shut up about that already?!" It's not fair to the memories of the dead or their families.
- Strong anti-gay legislation is on the horizon. I don't under stand this current atmosphere of homophobia. To quote Ron White, "isn't that the most useless thing you could possibly be - afraid of gay people?" I have no problem with two gay people getting married with the full benefits therein. I guess gay people don't get their life, liberty, or to pursue their happiness.
Other election thoughts:
- Barack Obama. This guy laid a whoopin' on Alan Keyes. For anyone else out there who wants a to be a Senator here's how in 3 easy steps
- Have a "goat-herder" for a dad
- Be the personification of the American Dream
- Have your well-connected, silver-spoon opponent get caught up in a sex scandal
- "Definition of Marriage" Initiatives. This is conservative code for "discrimination". The following states defined marriage to between a man and a woman: Arkansas, Georgia, Kentucky, Michigan, Mississippi, Montana, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, and Utah. Of those states, only Michigan and Oregon did not go for President Bush.
- Re-doing the electoral college. I am not in favor of abolishing the electoral college all together. It does serve a purpose. However, it does need work. In the current system, almost all states give 100% of their votes to one candidate. Bush carried Ohio by about 140,000 votes, giving him 20 electoral votes and the presidency. This means that in essence, only those 140,000 counted. If they had done it evenly, they would have split 10-10 or 11-9. I ran some numbers, and in every scenario, Bush still won the electoral vote. I just feel these ways are more representative of the will of the people.
- Straight Percentages - I took the percent of the state that voted for each candidate, and they got that many of the state's electoral votes. Pretty simple.
- District 1- In this method, I took a map of each state, and each candidate got the electoral vote from each district he won. The 2 electoral votes that represent those of the Senate were given to the winner. In the case of candidates taking an equal number of districts, they each get one of the Senate votes.
- District 2- This is a bit more complicated, but not much. The districts each give their vote for the candidate they choose. The Senate votes are given by who ever wins a majority of the vote, unless the difference in votes recieved is less than 10%. If the split is 53% - 47%, then each candidate gets one of the Senate votes. Granted, 10% is an arbitrary number. But this way if the majority is too close, essentially split evenly, then so are the votes.
Personally, I like Option #3. It gives the most even split within each state, there by assuring that each state remains important.
One caveat however: When I was all but done with my research, I realized I was looking at a map that showed how each district elected their representative. So in reality, if it says "Bush" district, they just elected a Republican representative. This will skew the results slightly, but it shouldn't make too much of a difference. Follow the link to download the Excel Spreadsheet of my "work". Election Analysis
Posted by Andrew at 11:50 AM
Tuesday, November 02, 2004
I was going to write about how you should all go vote. But you know what, I'm not. Here's why:
- If you weren't going to vote by now, I'm not going to be person who finally convinces you to
- It's not my business whether you vote or not.
- You are either doing the right thing or you are making my vote that much more important.
- And finally, I don't really give a shit about what you do.
Posted by Andrew at 9:59 AM
Monday, November 01, 2004
Last night I had a very odd dream. My high school basketball team made the state tournament. That in itself is weird enough, because they suck. The really weird part is that I was playing. This is weird for 2 reasons - one being I'm in college, and two being I never played in high school.
Evidentally, once they made the tournament, something happened to the team, like everyone died or got the flu or something - I don't remember, where they didn't have enough guys. Since I graduated early, I still have eligibility left. So, coach called me and I played in the state basketball tournament as a sophomore in college. Coach was acutally my old baseball coach, which is weird because he didn't coach guys' basketball. He was the girls' head coach. The half time pep talk was the single weirdest speech I've ever heard. Coach started by drawing a cartoon dog on the board and going on about being smart like the dog.
I also remember all the girls that ignored me in high school suddenly thinking that I was hot shit. As I was running off the court for halftime, everyone was yelling at me. Afterwards, we all went out and had a good time. So much for ignoring me now that I can play basketball, because I was draining shots left and right and playing defense like I knew what they were going to do before they did it. Of course I did so well, I'm me and it was my dream.
Posted by Andrew at 11:04 AM