Sierra Club Endorsement For Democratic Candidate?

December 30, 2007 at 12:48 pm (News & Politics, Unzipped Thoughts)


People Care 4 Day Care, Inc. notwithstanding, the Sierra Club is the non profit organization nearest and dearest to my heart. Sometime before the Presidential elections, they can be relied upon to openly endorse the Democrat de jour [for obvious reasons].

Since “we the people” are faced with choosing the most highly qualified [electable?] Democrat in the Primaries, in order that we put an end to this fascist reign of terror, I’m hoping that the Sierra Club will let us know which of the three highly qualified folk [Obama, Clinton, or Edwards] have been the biggest ally of our Planet.

Knowledge is power.

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Jim Beauchamp, Former 1973 NY Met, Passes Away

December 28, 2007 at 12:26 am (Baseball, Life & Death, New York Mets)


12 year Major League veteran Jim Beauchamp died at age 68 Tuesday. He finished his playing career in 1973 with the New York Mets, my all time favorite version of the Amazin’s. What I remember most about Jim was that he gave up his number 24 to Willie Mays when the trade for Charlie Williams returned him to Gotham, the year before.



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[Not So] Young Republican

December 27, 2007 at 1:46 pm (It's A Cartoon, Maroon, News & Politics)

[Cartoon from Boston Globe]


From my email:

Rudolph Giuliani and Mitt Romney are the leading contenders for the Republican Party’s nod as candidate for President in the upcoming 2008 elections. Former NYC mayor “Rudy” Giuliani is sometimes called “America’s Mayor” in the mainstream press, due to the prominent role he played in the wake of the 9-11 terrorist attacks on The Big Apple. Notwithstanding that notoriety, Giuliani is widely despised with many of the rank-and-file New York City firemen, primarily due to his taking the side of the police department in its ongoing rivalry with the firefighters.

Giuliani has, at best, a spotty record on issues like gay marriage and a woman’s right to choose to terminate a pregnancy. Both he and Mitt Romney have in the past staked out positions in support of limited gay rights, yet both candidates currently are in retreat on such issues, trying to posture themselves as staunchly conservative and “pro-family values.” Romney has renounced his prior support, as governor of Massachusetts, for a woman’s right to choose abortion; Giuliani is experiencing increasing difficulty squaring his “family values” image with three marriages. He was seeing his most recent wife while still married to Wife No. 2, who says she learned of his desire for a divorce when her husband announced their separation on national television. To this day at least some of Giuliani’s children who are steamed at him about this and other domestic issues.

Despite his checkered history on such matters, Giuliani recently surprised many by picking up the endorsement of noted t.v. evangelist Pat Robertson! The host of the “700 Club” pinned his endorsement on Rudy’s national defense posture, arguing that Giuliani is better able to defend the country from terrorists and foreign adversaries. Those who know Giuliani’s penchant for blowing his own horn are to be forgiven for their understandable skepticism.

In addition, the New York Times reports that one of Giuliani’s long time cronies, former New York City Police Commissioner Bernard Kerick, has been busted for commandeering an expensive Manhattan apartment that had been donated by its owner for use by New York’s Finest, who were assisting with rescue efforts in the wake of the World Trade Center tragedy. Adding to the scandal is the fact that Police Commissioner Kerick, unsuccessfully nominated by Rudy to serve as head of the Department of Homeland Security, commandeered the apartment for use as a hideaway for liaisons with his mistress, Judith Regan.

Miss Regan is herself notorious as the publisher of the infamous pseudo-memoir entitled “If I Did It” by O.J. Simpson.

We are known by the company we keep. It is also said that, “Those who lay down with dogs will get up with fleas.” Apparently Rudy Giuliani, the Reverend Pat Robertson, Police Commissioner Bernard Kerick, publisher Judith Regan and their ilk are quite comfortable with each other.

It remains to be seen how comfortable Republican voters may be with Rudy Giuliani or his flip-flopping rival, former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney.

No surprise, I’m voting Obama.

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Bert Blyleven For The Hall Of Fame

December 26, 2007 at 1:07 pm (Baseball)


For the most part [not withstanding Buck O’Neil’s exclusion and Walter O’Malley’s inclusion, for instances] the “selection process” works. Here’s a rare instance where I’m shocked, year after year, when the “powers that be” don’t see fit to include Bert Blyleven. I hope that this year, that will change.

Here’s his bio from his website:


Given name: Rik Aalbert Blyleven

Born: April 6, 1951

Birth Place: Zeist, Holland

Residence: Ft. Myers, Florida

Current occupation: Ninth season as Color Analysts for the Minnesota Twins

Family: Wife Gayle – Four children and two step children

Baseball career: Right-handed pitcher

  • 287 wins – 25th on the All-Time list
  • 250 loses – 10th on the All-Time list
  • 3.31 career Earned Run Average
  • 4,970 innings pitched – 13th on the All-Time list
  • 3,701 strikeouts – 5th on the All-Time list
  • 685 career starts – 8th on the All-Time list
  • 242 Complete games
  • 60 shutouts – 9th on the All-Time list
  • 15 (1-0 wins) – 3rd on the All-Time list
  • One of only three pitchers to ever win a Major League game before his 20th birthday and also win a Major League game after his 40th birthday.
  • 7th on the All-Time homeruns allowed list
  • Played on two World Series teams: 1979 Pittsburgh Pirates and the 1987 Minnesota Twins
  • Two-Time All-Star: 1973 and 1985
  • Won 20 games in 1973

During the off-season, Bert enjoys spending time with his family and playing golf. Also enjoys working around the house and bowling.

Bert has been involved in many charitable organizations throughout the years including Parkinson’s Association, Juvenile Diabetes, Luekemia Association, Children’s Hospital and the Ronald McDonald House.

Being the 5th all time leader in strikeouts is great, however, Bert’s major accomplishment to Baseball is the example he sets as a human being.

Edited to add 1/8/08: That’s the way it goes, first your money, then your clothes.


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Sister Mary Zig’s Holiday Greeting

December 25, 2007 at 2:45 pm (Family & Friends, Sister Mary Zig)

Have A Merry, Happy Everyday… In Every Way.       sisterzig1

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Inquiring Minds Want To Know.

December 23, 2007 at 3:19 pm (Unzipped Thoughts)

I read this somewhere:

“If a man says something in a forest, and no woman is around to hear him, is he still wrong?”

In response, I wrote this:

“If a woman says something in a forest, and no man is around to hear her, is it because there’s a game on?”

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Truth Stranger Than Fiction

December 21, 2007 at 3:17 pm (Baseball, Unzipped Thoughts)

Today’s musings contain no satire. The following is from

NEW YORK — Bud Selig could be baseball Commissioner for life if he wanted.

His backing among owners is as strong as ever after the Mitchell Report, which accused owners and players of ignoring performance-enhancing drugs.

“I’m not sure exactly what you’d say was Bud’s crime? I mean, what was he supposed to do?” former Commissioner Fay Vincent said. “He has no magic wand. He has got to work with owners. He has to work with the union.”

Two things matter most in professional sports: winning and profits. Selig has delivered both.

More clubs have a chance to win the World Series because of the revenue-sharing rules negotiated during his 15-year tenure. And the league set attendance records in 2007, topping $6 billion in revenue for the first time.

“He has total support of the ownership, total support,” Chicago White Sox chairman Jerry Reinsdorf said.

Selig received $14.5 million in the 12 months ending Oct. 31, 2005, according to Major League Baseball’s last available tax return, and owners think he’s worth it.

“He’s a terrific commissioner, and he’s doing the right thing in trying to clean up the sport,” Yankees owner George Steinbrenner said through spokesman Howard Rubenstein. “I am fully supporting him.”

Selig has said he plans to retire in two years, when he’s 75, but some owners think they can persuade him to stay on.

“Believe me, we’re going to certainly try,” Reinsdorf said. “The job is not done yet. He shouldn’t leave until he knows that he’s accomplished all he wants to accomplish and there’s somebody in place to pick up the ball and go the rest of the way.”

Selig, who had owned the Milwaukee Brewers since 1970, became acting commissioner in September 1992 when clubs forced out Vincent. Selig became permanent Commissioner in 1998, was elected to a five-year term and gave up running the team, which his family sold in 2005.

Only Kenesaw Mountain Landis (1920-44) and Bowie Kuhn (1969-84) have served longer among the nine Commissioners.

If anyone is to be faulted for the doping mess, owners said it’s the Players’ Association.

“I think we all knew there was an issue, but we all felt we had our hands tied by the collective bargaining agreement, and until that could be resolved in ’02, there just wasn’t a whole hell of a lot that could be done,” Texas Rangers owner Tom Hicks said. “Well-meaning people were trying to protect privacy, and they weren’t protecting their constituents from the biggest danger they had, which was steroids.”

But Don Fehr, head of the players’ union, twice has reopened the 2002 drug agreement, toughening the rules before the 2005 and 2006 seasons. In his report last week, Mitchell recommended baseball move its testing from a joint labor-management committee to an independent body.

Steve Greenberg of Allen & Co., an investment banking firm that advises owners on sales, blames individual players “that went out there and made the choice to essentially cheat, break the law and distort the record books.” The son of Hall of Famer Hank Greenberg, he can see both sides: He was a player agent, then became deputy commissioner under Vincent.

Greenberg understands what appears to be ambivalence among some to the Steroids Era.

“I think there are a significant number of fans, and I think maybe mostly the younger fans who don’t remember Roger Maris, let alone Babe Ruth and Hank Aaron, who don’t think it’s a big deal,” he said. “There are significant other segments of the fan population, like myself, who are concerned about it.”

Rep. Cliff Stearns, a Florida Republican who sponsored a bill and held hearings on drugs in 2005, called on Selig to resign.

“Certainly, a lack of leadership and oversight in MLB enabled these abuses to continue,” Stearns said. “After 15 years of slow action, a new Commissioner is needed to guide the league out of this era of drug abuse.”

That kind of blame-the-boss mentality led to the ouster this year of Citigroup Inc. chief executive officer Charles Prince and Merrill Lynch & Co. CEO Stan O’Neal, both booted after their companies took massive hits for subprime mortgages.

But under Selig, baseball economics are the best they’ve been since the free-agent revolution began in 1976, a transformation that saw the average player salary increase from $51,000 to nearly $3 million in three decades. Industry revenue rose from $182 million to its current $6 billion mark over the same span.

Under Selig, baseball instituted the popular switch to three divisions and a wild card in 1997, started the biggest ballpark building boom ever, signed record television contracts, started its own Internet business and ventured overseas for the first time, starting the World Baseball Classic and playing regular-season games in Mexico, Puerto Rico and Japan.

His detractors said he was slow to make many of those moves and pushed ahead with decisions only after he formed a consensus. He prefers to call his pace studied and deliberate.

And the positive changes came only after his attempt to institute a salary cap provoked players into a seven-month strike in 1994-95, a work stoppage that led to the first cancellation of the World Series in nine decades.

“The game has prospered. He’s done all sorts of great things. And the only thing that has held us back in the steroid and HGH area is Don Fehr,” Reinsdorf said.

Fehr argues the union has moved far in a short time to combat the problem. He has agreed to discuss Mitchell’s recommendations but said, as he usually does, that union leadership will consult with players before making any determinations.

Players and owners already have agreed to adopt any validated urine test for human growth hormone. If a validated blood test is developed, that would have to be negotiated. Baseball’s drug-testing agreement doesn’t currently allow blood tests.

“If they develop a test for HGH that’s based on blood, what’s the big deal to take your blood once in a while?” Reinsdorf said.

Hicks is one who believes it’s a science issue.

“You have to be able to have a test for human growth hormone. That’s the main public recognition, I think, that’s going to come out of the Mitchell Report,” he said. “We have to get the technology right.”

But Vincent recognized the problems go far beyond baseball.

“I think over time it will become clear to all fans that competitive sports are really seriously at risk, and I don’t have the answer. How can you get people to stop cheating when the financial rewards of cheating are so enormous?”

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

My “inner child” is sickened. I fear most that I will awaken one day [soon] and no longer give a rat’s arse.


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Branch Rickey, Josef Mengele Not Guilty Of HGH Experimenents With Twins

December 19, 2007 at 7:42 pm (Alameda, Baseball, News & Politics, Unzipped Thoughts)

WZIG in Alameda is reporting that the names of the late [never tardy] Branch Rickey and Dr. Josef Mengele have been cleared.

Anonymous sources have confirmed that Senator George Mitchell investigated the possibility that the two worked together in order to artificially enhance the careers of the O’Brien twins John and Ed, while the former Brooklyn Dodgers executive was running the Pirates in the early 1950’s. No conclusive evidence was found.

The family of Dr. Mengele, who was rumored to be living in the Minneapolis/St.Paul area of Minnesota at the time [he worked as a debt collector by re-attaching Siamese Twins who were unable to pay their medical bills for the first operation], said that “Uncle JM was a lovable man and was only following orders.”

Mr. Rickey, innocent victim of satirical hoax:


Dr. Josef Mengele, strength and conditioning coach:


Keystone Combo:


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Art Spector Update

December 18, 2007 at 8:06 pm (Kittatinny Camp)

From today’s Email:

“My Great Grandfather, Charles Grettner, was the baker for the camp. I sent the picture from the website to my Dad and he did a double take. He is the father of 4, married twice. I am his oldest child, living in Rose Valley, PA . I manage an historic state and trust, and have 2 children. My sister is a professor of psychology in Minnesota and has 2 children. My brother is a perpetual student and is living at home caring for his mother. His youngest child, Jonathan, plays professional soccer for West Ham United in England, the US National Team, is slated for the Olymics in Bejing and the next World Cup, so long as he is injury free. I know that my Dad would love to hear from anyone that remembers him, but he doesn’t enjoy using the computer. Please contact me through my email and I will put you in touch.”


Christine Olmsted

On a personal note, I now have a rooting interest in soccer- for the first time in my life… Also, I’ve always thought of Art when the now infamous Phil Spector crossed my mind, but not before thinking of Phil’s onetime bride, Ronnie of the Shirelles. Gawd she was hot.

Go Jonathan Spector!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Go Green Team!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Go Art Spector!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Go Charles Grettner!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Go Christie Olmsted!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Go K-I-T-T-A-T-I-N-N-Y!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Go Ronnie Spector!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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No Grapes Or Raisins For Dogs

December 17, 2007 at 9:55 pm (Life & Death)

Sonia [Soda] Satin Tyko


Here’s a link that will interest you if you own a dog:

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