Elevator Etiquette

Good morning and greetings for the first time in 2018! Yes, it’s a new year but with the same great adulting! Continue reading

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If I was NFL Commissioner

Hello and welcome to the What-If portion of my mind!

Helmet

That’s like totally most of it most days but whatever! From last year into this year, there seems to be an unusual amount of unrest associated with the NFL. Many longtime fans (Vin Scully included) have said they plan to stop watching the games, TV ratings are down and more people seem to talk about the people associated with the league as opposed to the product on the field. So let me take this chance to throw my hat in the ring to be the next NFL commissioner…unless that Tweet from earlier nets me the University of Tennessee head football coaching job. Continue reading

The Dark Tower Movie

Good day and happy weekend!

Well I just wasted $1.50 and an hour and a half of my life to confirm what I suspected would occur. As a HUUUUUGE fan of the Stephen King book series, The Dark Tower, I rented the DVD form of the movie to see what tomfoolery the producers could whip up. And I was not disappointed in my disappointedness. Continue reading

NBA Greatest of All-Time Debate

Hey there sports fans! Yes I know this is back-to-back posts about sports, but hey why not?

So in a pointless exercise, I got into a Facebook thread debate about who is the best of All-Time: Michael Jordan or LeBron James. From my perspective this limited the argument to just these two players and discounted the vast history of the NBA and it predecessor the ABA.

Player Games Points FT % FTM FTA REB ASST STL BLK TO TITLES REG MVP FINALS MVP POS
LeBron James 1072 29,105 74.0% 6,526 8,814 7,788 7,561 1,765 830 3,665 3 4 3 F
Julius Erving 1243 30,026 77.7% 6,256 8,052 10,525 5,176 2,272 1,971 3,940 3 4 0 SF
Michael Jordan 1072 32,292 83.5% 7,327 8,772 6,672 5,633 2,514 893 2,924 6 5 6 G
Shaquille O’Neal 1207 28,596 52.7% 5,935 11,252 13,099 3,026 739 2,732 3,310 4 1 3 C
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar 1560 38,387 72.1% 6712 9304 17,440 5660 1160 3189 2527 6 6 2 C

This argument went back and forth much like the tides hitting the beaches of North Carolina which is to say the pattern was relentless with no end in sight. I have always been very pro-Jordan and most of today’s dunk-and-three-pointer society thinks LeBron is the end-all, be-all of NBA play. Don’t get me wrong, LeBron is probably the best player over the last five or so years in the current NBA. But I do not think he surpasses MJ. Michael Jordan got more out of arguably less physical talents not only within himself but also of his teammates. Where LeBron has obvious physical gifts and talent, Jordan was not as blessed with as much and had to work harder for it, in my opinion.

The person who started the thread, whom we will call Tyler to protect his identity, posted an NBA video link on his timeline. He started his argument for why LeBron should be considered better than Jordan by stating: Tell me why Jordan is better than LeBron and don’t say six (championship) rings. Like I said, I took this to be a straight Jordan-LeBron fight. If you look up above, you will see that I posted a small sample table of stats for five players. All of the players listed are Hall Of Famers or future Hall Of Famers. Please note that there are several notable missing players that could be included for comparison purposes but for time and spare considerations, I left them off. You’ll notice for the stats listed above, LeBron only leads in the Assists category but he is far from catching the all-time leader (John Stockton – 15,806).

The argument that today’s NBA is radically different than the league was from 10-20-30 years ago is very valid. The 3-point shot is much more prevalent and defensive philosophies are greatly relaxed if not outright forgotten. Today’s game is about power dunks and dozens of three point shots per game. Certain skill sets have been made extinct and the center position is not the center of the universe as it was in decades past.

Once the Facebook thread started to breakdown into an effort to bully the topic and be ridiculous, I broke off and acknowledged some of the greats that were being treated like second class citizens in the wake of LeBron-mania. Take multiple time World Champion Shaquille O’Neal for example. If you exclude his weak free throw prowess, the man grabbed 13,099 rebounds and helped propel his teams to four championships (1 more than LeBron). Wilt Chamberlain, who is the all-time rebounding leader for the NBA with a whopping 23,924, had a pair of NBA championships and a 100-point scoring game (LeBron has 0 100-point scoring games to date). If you want to turn this into a numbers fight, LeBron for his career on average makes three out of every four free throws while Jordan averaged making better than four out of five. The Great Dr. J, Julius Erving, bettered LBJ as well by making 77.7% of his free throws to LBJ’s 74.0%. If we go heads up with LBJ versus Dr. J in the defensive categories of Steals and Blocked Shots – the Doctor slams LBJ by a wide margin: Steals – LBJ 1765 Dr J 2272, Blocks – LBJ 830 Dr J 1971. Even these stars fall far short of those category leaders all-time: Steals – John Stockton 3265, Blocks – Hakeem Olajuwon 3830.

Many of these arguments are moot and silly as different position players have different responsibilities on the court that vary greatly from team to team and era to era. But for those people who want to tear down the Michael Jordan legacy to hand over to LeBron, OK go for it…but know this, that doesn’t make LBJ the greatest of all-time. There are plenty of those other legends with their names in the record books that LeBron will never even sniff their achievements(even if he can remain healthy for another 4-5 years). If you follow history, it tells us that big bodies will start to break down and the wear and tear will show. Just ask Shaquille O’Neal, who was the most dominant center during his prime NBA years, how unkind Father Time can be. Towards the end of his career couldn’t play more than three to four games without the accumulated injuries holding him out of action.

Full disclosure, I do not watch much of the NBA these days. I find the product uninteresting because I don’t have a tremendous desire to follow any of the current stars. Back in my younger days, I liked to watch Julius Erving, Larry Bird, Magic Johnson, Hakeem Olajuwon, Patrick Ewing, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Dominique Wilkins, Kevin Garnett, Allen Iverson, Paul Pierce, Moses Malone, Kobe Bryant, Michael Jordan, Spud Webb, Muggsy Bogues and several others. There were rivalries and actual basketball to watch. Nowadays there is a: fast break dunk, fast break and a dunk, fast break and a three-pointer. When they aren’t fast breaking and things set up in the half court set, the players are engaged in more physical contact than an MMA fight. Just give those guys helmets and shoulder pads because that isn’t basketball the way the game was drawn up in the rules.

I re-posted the thread on the Facebook page for Sports Stalkers if anyone wants to waste an hour reading all the hot garbage contained in there. But I implore you to find something more constructive to do like building a castle out of non-frozen dog turds and Pixie Stix.

OK that’s enough for today. Hope you are having a health-healthy good day. Talk to you later alligators!

Peace.

How to respond to life in general

Good morning and welcome to my blog.

I use many forms of social media and my tempering of comments varies by site. I read a post on the LinkedIn job networking site and responded with the following comment:

“Too many people in today’s society are conditioned to be the victim in the dog-eat-dog world out there. The faceless masses do not care. You need to believe in yourself and have some internal steel to survive the onslaught of wrong that will inevitably come your way in life.”

Continue reading

Friday – October 27, 2017 – Billy Martin for starters

Happy Friday y’all!

Yes I said y’all, deal with it.

My mind is a bit scattered today. For some reason I got the Yankees situation shoved down my throat this morning by local talk radio personality Bernie Miklasz. For those readers who are not really baseball fans, the Yankees play in New York and their manager was Joe Girardi. They almost made it to the World Series which is a pretty big deal. Joe was at the end of his contract and the powers that be (Brian Cashman) advised the ownership that he should not be retained…so he wasn’t. Continue reading

Softball is not Dead!

 Some of you may be confused by the title of this post. If any of you around the globe listened to my podcast interview with Mark Balven, former NSA Director, you might remember him stating that he thought softball was dying. While the sheer numbers in the sport may not be what they once were, judging by the turn out at multiple events over this past weekend in Missouri and Illinois, the sport is still doing alright. Go about your business, nothing to see here. Continue reading

Annoyances

$#%^@#^^%@$#$%@!!

Um, I mean good afternoon of course!

 Sorry for the crankiness right out of the gate but it’s just been one of those days. What kind of day am I referring to? Well, do you ever have one of those days where every single thing in existence seems to bother or irritate you? If not, good for you and go away. For me, there are just some days where from the first moment I crack my eyes open at 12:34am (and again at random intervals over the next five or so hours) that I just want to pull myself into an imaginary turtle shell and shut out all things. And I do mean all things. Continue reading

October 3rd – (Unofficial) National Mean Girls Day

 Don’t know what I’m talking about with the title…Google it. And forgive me. 

In addition to paying homage to one of the greatest teen comedies of all-time (highly subjective judging here), I was cruising along the news feeds on the internet. Obviously dominating the headlines is the senseless tragedy from Las Vegas where a shooter killed nearly five dozen people and injured hundreds more. On an also somber note, the music legend Tom Petty has left the stage. 

In an effort to get away from the death and sadness, I ran across an article warning of an asteroid that will pass ‘near’ the Earth on October 12, 2017. Glad for the distraction, I clicked the link and read some NASA provided details on an asteroid set to ‘pass by’ the Earth on the 12th. Now when I hear ‘asteroid’ and ‘near the Earth’, my mind jumps to the 1998 movie classic Armageddon featuring Bruce Willis, Ben Allfeck, Billy Bob Thornton and Liv Tyler (plus many more!). The plot of that movie was an end of the world scenario where a chuck of space rock, roughly the size of the state of Texas, is on a collision course with Mother Earth! Oh no! The end is nigh! But wait! The scrappy human race puts together a debatable ‘Dream Team’ to try to blast this rock apart and save our existence (at least on this plain). Despite the critical review of the late Roger Ebert (one star out of five rating), may he rest in peace, the film cost $140,000,000 to make but recouped that plus more in a total box office take of $553,700,000. This just goes to show, that artistically speaking (yes I’m talking about you Michael Bay of Transformers fame and considerable fortune), sometimes the people just want a cool story, special effects and a big name to entertain them for two hours even if the logical stuff falls flat.

 

Getting back to the present: Should we be concerned about this asteroid hurtling through our relative space? According to NASA, not so much. In the movie, the rock chunk was the size of Texas. The one coming in 9 days is the roughly the size of a bloated T-Rex. Also this T-Rex-sized rock mass is not supposed to be coming directly at the Earth, but about 31,100 miles to the side. So the planet, all applicable satellites and assorted space stuff alike should be good to go.

 Below is a link to a Wikipedia site that details the three dozen or so other notable asteroid incidents from 2017 so far.

 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_asteroid_close_approaches_to_Earth_in_2017

 Hope your Tuesday is bright, pleasant and filled with adoring pets!

 Peace.

 

The Total Solar Eclipse vs Y2K Madness

OMG.
Like the sun is like totally going to be like obscured and such for like two and a half minutes. Oh My Gawd!

So for my peoples in the path of destruction, where will you be on Monday, August 21st at 1:15pm-ish? Will you be hunkered in a bunker? Rooftop to stare at the sun spot?

Me, I will be at work while Kristi’s child will be at home because school has been cancelled to allow for the two plus minute window of darkness in the afternoon (face palm). Here’s a thought: It’s the middle of the friggin afternoon. If it gets too dark while driving you can turn on your headlights! Here’s a second thought: What are you going to do if it is cloudy that afternoon? Maybe try to get a refund for your #$@#@* eclipse glasses?

Why am I so anti-eclipse? Simply because it’s not that big of a deal. I say this as a person who got a C+ in all my science classes because I frankly do not find science all that interesting. Don’t get me wrong, science is great and the basis behind all or most of society’s conveniences. But for me it’s like magic. I know their is some sort of logic on why things occur and how ‘tricks’ unfold but I’ll let them remain a mystery and be accepting of the awe and wonder without getting all geeked up.

Some people may be of an age to remember and appreciate the hysteria from the Y2K malarkey. For those who were of an age to comprehend things back in the year of 1999, there was an unease and shallow panic in the throngs of the populace. The year 2000 was coming. The possible end of the world was coming. Computers as we knew them then were going to turn into smoking balls of fire once December 31st at 11:59pm clunked beyond the next minute. The collective electronic globe held it’s breath and hugged loved ones close as they prepared for the unimaginable. On that last day in December, the seconds raced toward the ‘end’.

11:59:59…turned into 12:00:00 and there were innumerable explosions! Ok Ok it was just locals shooting off fireworks and discharging firearms like any other new year’s celebration. But the hype, fear and pandemonium leading up to that point were unfounded. Yes I’m sure there were some programs that saved the files at the bottom of the list instead of the top where the newest stuff should get saved but for the most part nothing of note happened.

My point here is that for the most part I don’t anticipate anything of significance occurring on Monday either. The oceans will not rise and turn the all continents into a modern Atlantis. Gravity will not be suspended; thus sending everything not rooted to the Earth’s crust hurtling into the farthest reaches of oxygen-less space.

Monday morning will arrive. Monday afternoon will happen. It will become some shade of darkness. (Note: As a general rule you should not stare at the sun but if you have these ‘special’ glasses then go for it.) The eclipse will commence and then wane and everything will more or less be the same as before. A billion pictures will be uploaded onto social media. A trillion social media statuses will be something related to the solar event. This will go on for days until something else moderately interesting comes along and then it will cease to be noteworthy topic until those end of the year recap shows for TV and radio.

If you are hosting an eclipse party and I’ve offended you, I quasi-apologize. By which I mean to say: sorry-not sorry. I implore you to have your fun but for me, I put the eclipse on par with my appreciation for the sport of soccer. If it’s your cup of tea, more power to you but I’m viciously bored with both.

Have a great weekend and make sure to protect yourself on Monday from the marauding hordes of Big Bang Gangs crisscrossing the country!

Peace.

The Struggle is Real

I was sitting in on a virtual webinar today at work. Naturally I locked onto something completely out of context to the material being presented. A thought occurred to me and laughed out loud at my desk. The presenter was talking about his daughter and how she ‘struggles’ with math.

In today’s society, we tend to substitute words for things to be a little gentler and politically correct. Things in our jobs can be challenging is a nice way of saying something is “A big pain in the arse”. So when you hear someone say that someone struggles at something…it’s a nice way of saying “they suck at it”.

Oh it’s true, it’s darn true!

Right now I am struggling at playing nice with certain people.  🙂

Hope you are NOT struggling at enjoying your Friday. Have a greeeeeaaaaaat Friday and subsequent weekend.

Peace.

<<08-18-2107>>

Cadaver Dogs

Did you know there is a website called http://www.cadaverdog.com? I had not a clue until about 12 seconds ago. I was thinking to myself:

“Self?”
“Yes?”
“What are the biggest sellers for the Cadbury company during the months after Easter?”

I start typing Cadbury in the search engine and auto-fill suggests cadaver…from there my mind starts sing-songing: Cadaver Dogs, down in the swamp! (To the tune of Bob Evans…down on the farm!) Why did my mind go there? I honestly have no clue. Sometimes the track switches without warning and the train rolls on.

In scanning through some material on cadaver dogs, I was surprised to learn a few things. For me, I kind of get the doggie stereo-type of German Shepherds as the police dogs with all the detection tools. But come to find out, there are several breeds that are utilized especially when trying to locate human remains. Goldens, blood hounds, collies, beagles, pit bulls and more! So don’t be like me. Let your mind be open and receptive to the opportunities available to many dog breeds regardless of size, color or gender.

Today’s random Google search has taught me a valuable lesson in embracing the possibilities (for doggie workers). And here’s to hoping I am never in need of the cadaver dogs’ services to locate my remains somewhere down the road.

To everyone who breathes in the air on this Earth while reading my posts, keep fighting the good ‘eat healthy’ battle. If nothing else, at least try to speak the names of healthy vegetables in the hopes that invoking their names to the universe will lead to good health.

Peace.

http://www.cadaverdog.com/

CADAVER DOG BREEDS

<<07-27-2017>>

Disappointment Party of One…Your Table is Ready

I have worked for many companies and bosses over the last 25 plus years. Some companies were good but had bad bosses and some companies were bad but had good bosses and some were just bad all-around. Pushing aside the salary and benefits and actually liking your job, I feel having a boss that has your back is huge. I cannot tell you how many times working under Jayne, Sarah and Jon at those respective places of business that hairy situations came up. But I knew in each situation what was appropriate and that if push came to shove, those people had my back as long as I stayed on the correct side of the line of right and wrong. So it’s a very frustrating and a lost at sea feeling when you do your job as it should be done and that alleged line of support takes a step back and just watches as the bus roll over you. It’s a feeling like a kid getting socks and underwear for Christmas but not just new plain white socks and underwear; more like second-hand socks and underwear with some holes and brown-ish stains.

My recommendation for the youth of today, find a way to be your own boss or just be independently wealthy (is there an app for this yet?). You will get let down less often but don’t worry, other people will still find ways to disappoint you: the maid, the gardeners, your personal trainer, quasi-psychiatrists, the attendant at your personal sports complex, etc.

Today feels like an I’m going to stop at the gas station to buy a Powerball ticket kind of day. Three Mondays in this week so far is darn crappy odds but maybe the universe is saying the odds will be good somewhere else. Fingers, toes and eyes crossed that it (the Powerball grand prize win) comes to fruition.

To the smiling haters and spineless wannabes, I hope a flood of steaming vomit appears on your desk and you can clearly distinguish bits of salad, maybe some strawberries, a few ounces of root beer and bunch of the ‘weird’ varieties of Doritos – partially digested are all there.

Peace.

*** Legal Disclaimer: The above blog post does not describe a real-time incident or scenario. Any similarities to people and businesses, dead or alive or dormant, is strictly coincidental. Remember sarcasm is as vital as water, food and sunlight (not the dish washing detergent).

Rabies and Bobcat Babies

Baby Bobcat Rescued, Euthanized

OK this is my last rant-like post for the week and a bit of a bummer to start June with but this topic is seriously bugging me and in order to try to purge it from brain, here we go…

Some of you may have seen an article pertaining to Lamia the three week old female bobcat kitten ‘rescued’ in Springfield, Missouri. I’ve included the post mortem article up above.

Someone please remind me, what year is it again 1817? In this day and age where we can remotely start our cars, turn off appliances from hundreds of miles away using a phone app and science can (and did) make an exact copy of a sheep from a collection of cells: why isn’t rabies treatment more or less along the lines of a flu shot? Hmmm?

Now take my mental distress and outrage into context. I am a cat owner and have enjoyed having multiple cats in my household for the better part of 25 years. Yes I know the ‘cat’ from the article is a wild animal, not a housecat but a baby bobcat. In truth many wild animals are hunted and killed or perish trying to cross various roadways every day. Life and subsequent death is hard and unpleasant to contemplate. But human intervention killed this wild animal on the heels of ‘saving’ it. The dude that this controversy spins outward from, apparently had some sort of heart procedure within recent months. This did not stop him from going out and bulldozing or whatever to his property. And so he came across this bobcat kitten. How it unfolded next; the kitten was ‘rescued’ and put into a cage. While the kitten was inside the cage, this guy’s hand came into proximity to the bobcat baby. Acting on instinct, the kitten bit him…and broke the skin with its four baby teeth. The wildlife advocate lady involved advised him to have a medical professional look at the bite and thus started us on this sad and un-necessary Green-Mile-like procession.

Since the bobcat is not a domestic animal, it cannot be quarantined to see if the three stages of rabies present themselves.
Stage one: Prodromal – behavior changes – personality along with eating and drinking radically change
Stage two: Excitative – excitable by outside stimuli causing violent reactions, including lashing out and biting
Stage three: Paralytic – hindquarters ‘freeze’, muscles become rigid, excessively drooling, difficulty breathing (Note: Death is usually caused by respiratory arrest)

One trait shared by the rabies carrier and the infected victim is hydrophobia, which is the historic name for rabies. Because in the throes of stage two, it becomes hard to swallow for the infected and they develop an irrational fear of water. Don’t ask me why, they just do.

So I’m guessing rabies has only been around for like 5-10 years or they would’ve already found a cure right? Nope. Rabies has been around since at least 2000 B.C. according to ancient records in Europe. So fast forward 4000 years…and rabies still exists. I guess this shouldn’t be that surprising because not everyone can live in a controlled upscale community. Just like polio and small pox et al, there are always going to be versions of disease, such as the viral rabies, that exist in corners of the world where medical care consists of wrapping leaves and mud around a cut or bite. But in these United States, where your President is Donald Trump and Kathy Griffin can post a social media picture depicting a ‘joke’ of a decapitated President, how do we not have a laser device on our keychains that can wipe out rabies or a snake bite just by zapping the infected area for 10 seconds? Get Scooby on this mystery ASAP! Dr. Gregory House would’ve figured out how to cure rabies with a banana and an ice cube.

Alright I will move the notches back on the lawn mower deck to cut a little closer. Yes there are cures for snake bites and rabies. You can even Google the specific options for protocols (see the Milwaukee Protocol). You might even be able to run by Walgreens on the way home to have their clinic do it for you depending upon where you live (yeah, I’m talking to you North Dakota).

Let’s establish some facts. 95% of the world’s rabies problem is contained in Africa and Asia. Of the 17,400 cases reported worldwide in 2015, 40% of them were contracted by children under the age of 15. Rabies is transmitted, in general, via scratch or bite from an infected animal. The usual suspects carrying the rabies virus are: dogs, bats, raccoons, skunks and foxes. But the virus is not limited to these animals. The virus can be carried by and transmitted to any warm blooded mammal and it attacks the Central Nervous System. 99% of the world’s rabies transmissions come from dogs but 95% of the Americas rabies cases are attributed to bats. If that is confusing, just refer back to the first sentence in this paragraph where Africa and Asia predominantly hold the world’s rabies problem.

On the home front, home being North America, there were 49 confirmed cases of rabies from 1995 through 2011 and almost all of those were attributed to bats. A fun little bit of information, birds can be infected with rabies, as scientists intentionally did in the middle 1900’s. But they produce antibodies that fight off the virus. If not can you imagine the worldwide epidemic that could be spread by the trillions of birds? As if millions of people didn’t already suffer from Ornithophobia.

Today is June the first or June 1, 2017. There are 120 days until World Rabies Day (September 28th). What does that ribbon look like?

Besides the information contained above, what is my point here? Well for one that yes I can be a bit informative in addition to entertaining. And two, this baby bobcat was put to death for virtually no reason. I am going to tell you right now in writing that the test on this beheaded baby bobcat is going to come back negative for rabies. Do the math, 49 cases of rabies in North America from 1995 to 2011 – that equates out on average to 3 legit occurrences per year. The guy who got bit doesn’t have rabies. This baby bobcat who was earmarked to live in captivity for the rest of its life, got three weeks on the books and extinguished by a virtual form somewhere. The guy who got bit while ‘clearing his land’ after a heart procedure was not a candidate for the vaccine. He was offered the (if necessary) cure at zero cost by interest groups who lobbied to save this tiny creature’s life. The number one option taken to check for rabies in a suspected (apparently not innocent until proven guilty here) animal is to kill it, behead it and extract brain cells to check for (and the majority of the time not find) rabies virus. How many thousands of animals a year are destroyed for fear of this often not present virus? Granted full blown rabies is painful and deadly to humans and animals alike but guess what…you can get an immediate treatment and be OK most of the time. Something that is also neglected to be acknowledged…you can test for rabies with saliva, urine and cerebrospinal fluid. I’m not sure what that third option is but the other two do not require decapitation. Duly noted that the other options are not 100% accurate all the time, but heck condoms are on the market and they are not 100% effective either.

It just goes to show that we are a blood thirsty society and wrong place, wrong time examples like Lamia pay the price. What would Harambe say if he were alive today?

Thursday. Handful of Skittles.

Peace.

 

Epilogue: I was right and all the people involved should be punched in the face 100 times for being stupid. Read the story below.

http://www.news-leader.com/story/news/2017/06/05/rabies-results-come-back-baby-bobcat-euthanized-health-department/371204001/