Presidential Medals of Freedom, Pitchers’ Duel for the Hall of Fame

12 08 2009

First, today’s Presidential Medal of Freedom honorees are SO interesting and eclectic, not chosen by grades or standards or statistics but for whatever unique power of story the current president sees in each one and what they represent for America.

I may blog more on this but here, see what you see in this group of 16 from Sandra Day O’Connor and Billie Jean King to Sidney Poitier, Stephen Hawking (“a mediocre student”, says the president to laughter) and Desmond Tutu.

Oh, and don’t forget Chita Rivera and Harvey Milk. Ted Kennedy. I am awash in power in story!

From the July/August Atlantic Magazine comes
“Pitchers’ Duel: Roger Clemens, Curt Schilling, and Hall of Fame standards in the steroid era”:

[I’ll explain this part to Nance later! 😀 ]

Clemens won 354 games over his career, racking up a shelf-buckling seven Cy Youngs in the process; by the numbers, he was arguably the best pitcher of all time. Schilling’s 216 wins, like most of his career statistics, are very good; still, by the numerology that has traditionally governed Hall of Fame voting, he is at best a marginal prospect.

But baseball numbers no longer inspire the same faith that they used to.

. . .“As he got older, [Schilling] became more and more a student of the game Read the rest of this entry »

Red Sox Nation Trade Gets Made Under Wire

31 07 2009

July 31, 2009
Red Sox Acquire Victor Martinez
By Jack Curry
Redsox – Bats Blog

Update | 3:29 p.m. As David Ortiz and the Red Sox deal with the disclosure that he was on the 2003 list of players who used performance enhancers, one way to divert the attention from Ortiz is by making a splashy trade.

The Red Sox acquired Victor Martinez, a catcher and first baseman, from the Indians on Friday, according to an official in Major League Baseball. Relief pitcher Justin Masterson and two minor leaguers will go the Indians.

Earlier this month, the Red Sox would not trade the promising pitcher Clay Buchholz for Martinez. Martinez, a switch-hitter, has a reasonable $7 million contract option for 2010.

What A Day for Limbaugh to Insult Girls Everywhere

15 07 2009

I have HAD it. Sonia Sotomayor is constrained by the unjust rules, sitting alone and representing herself against a phalanx of white male bullies, just for the right to be a Girl and get into position to finally help have that be a good thing instead of an institutionalized handicap. And at the same moment, Rush Limbaugh is on the radio trying to denigrate President Obama (again) but instead this time, insulting every female on the planet.

Obama “throws like a girl”; Bush “is a man”

What is WRONG with these guys?? I mean, I know Limbaugh’s literally deaf but what excuse do the rest of them have?

He ranted for half an hour at the top of his show today as Young Son and I listened, wondering if he saw the feel-good power of story nationally televised last night, that we had watched and loved. (Even the Yankees and the National League opponents!)

On the upside, here’s a truly heart-warming story for everyone about last night’s All-Star Game. Which was a big American League victory, credited to Papelbon btw, whoo-hoo! Pedroida got to stay home with the baby-and-mom-to-be . . .

All the Sox were super imo and the President too, even if he DID have another team’s jacket on.

He shook hands with the players in the locker room before the game, which we don’t recall Read the rest of this entry »

Michael, Madonna, Manny — and MamaBear?

10 07 2009

Some substitute cable host I don’t know (Suzy Welch) just said on Morning Joe that Sarah Palin is a true original who fascinates us Americans as do originals Michael Jackson, Madonna and Manny Ramirez.

Suzy Welch wrote a book right up my power of story alley:

“She explains how thinking about the impact of our decisions in multiple time frames invariably surfaces our unconscious agendas, fears, needs and desires — and ultimately helps us identify and live according to our deepest goals and values.”

So let’s examine her analogy of Michael, Madonna, Manny and MamaBear for deeper goals and values, shall we?



And let’s mash it up with the language of Michael’s iconic Billie Jean lyrics, for any extra insight about “agendas, fears, needs and desires” that may provide. . .
Here’s a starting point: Is Sarah Palin’s popularity explained as just MamaBear being MamaBear?

Are Manny and MamaBear analogous?
“And be careful of what you do
cause the lie becomes the truth. . .”

Lovable to most, frustrating to some, Manny Ramirez was an enigmatic superstar in his years with the Red Sox. “Manny being Manny” became a popular catchphrase in these parts. We look back at some of Manny’s bizarre episodes . . .today he received a 50-game suspension for testing positive for a performance-enhancing drug.

Lynn, can you photoshop a picture of this quartet and share? 😉

Throw in Paris and Britney too, if it makes a better original.

paris hilton fashion cover

britney spears in airport disguise

Although wait a minute — Michael, Madonna and Manny all do have original, universally recognized ACTUAL accomplishments in their field, corporate entertainment. Palin’s field is public policy governance, so the actual accomplishments supporting her membership in their midst are –? Logic Fail!
What’s wrong with this picture?

“The law was on her side
But who can stand when she’s in demand
Her schemes and plans
. . .So take my strong advice, just remember to always think twice
(do think twice)”

Is this analogy sponsor-worthy as reality show? MSNBC’s three other Ms got rich and famous by Read the rest of this entry »

Robotic Orders From Above?

7 07 2009

Rush Limbaugh’s substitute this afternoon said something strange in my minivan today on our way to Shakespeare Summer Camp. He was railing (as usual) about liberals who are ruining the country and then he called them those people “following robotic orders from above” —

Wait, what? Isn’t that the OTHER guys??


O Hai, Ceiling Cat Has Bibul Laffs for U

Supreme Umpires? Inside Baseball and the Bench

26 05 2009

Sonia Sotomayor: the Judge Who Saved Baseball

Anybody keeping score of which party controls the first few innings of the confirmation debate should make note of how many times “baseball” gets repeated in the political chatter over the next 48 hours.

When a new President mentions baseball twice in the first few minutes of his first Supreme Court nominee event, it is not a coincidence. To make sure his first nominee makes it through a potentially ugly confirmation process, President Obama is wrapping the debate in one of the most popular symbols of American life: baseball.

Remember the last SCOTUS confirmation process, when now-Chief Justice John Roberts said being a judge was like being a baseball ump, applying the rules and calling each ball or strike fairly for every team and individual, without personal favoritism or animus?

But “umpires do not encounter cases where rules do not previously exist. They certainly do not get to determine what they mean or whether that meaning changes over time with societal developments and scientific advancements. . .”

And Read the rest of this entry »

It’s the Humanity, Stupid. . .

11 05 2009

Apparently the Church is no better at bureaucratic control and governance of real life than the State. It’s the Humanity, Stupid!

For the Miami archdiocese, losing Father Cutié to the Episcopalians would be like the Yankees losing Derek Jeter to the Red Sox. Unfortunately, the pool at the Delano will freeze over before the current Vatican softens its position on celibacy.

Ironically, some of the original Apostles were married, including a heavy hitter named Peter. He became the first Pope, and there’s no historical evidence that his wife ever distracted him from his holy duties. Who knows if he would have been as strong — free and single on South Beach.