Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Great Author Dies

I heard earlier this afternoon that the great writer John Updike has died. Updike is probably best well-known for his Rabbit series of books, which is a wonderful series of four books that follows former high school basketball star Harry Angstrom from his days as a young man trying to make it as a door to door salesman, all the way through to his death, some 30 years later.

The series offers a fascinating look into American history over the four decades. The first book, Rabbit Run was published in 1960, and the final one, Rabbit at Rest, in 1990. Updike does a great job capturing the values and culture of each decade. The first book is marked by a wild idealism, which characterized the 60s', the second book captures that giant hangover that was the 70s. The third book gets the extravegance the was the '80s, and the fourth book gets the bitter conservatism that was much of the '90s. The thing is, he wrote each book at the beginning of the decade. He had a true sense of what was going on.

Of course, I can't say anything else I ever read of his was all too memorable, but, the Rabbit series rocks. If you have some serious time to waste, I recommend checking it out.


Tuesday, January 20, 2009


The Inauguration in HD with stereo was really cool. Barack is a great talker and he was followed by a couple good poets. The last guy actually used the line, "for the red man to get ahead man."

Good stuff.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Congrats to Steelers

For the second time in four years, the Stillers are headed to the Super Bowl, which is pretty impressive, especially considering my Buffalo Bills haven't even been to the playoffs in 10 years - since the halcyon days of Wade Phillips... Anyhow, this post is about the Stillers... I was watching the game with a lifelong Stiller fan friend of mine who made the comment, "I didn't expect it to be this ugly." I'm not sure what he was expecting but after seeing the Ravens and Stillers play a handful of times this year - including once against each other- I was certainly expecting ugly.

I love this comment blogger Adrew Perloff made in regards to the Ravens past two games(against the Stillers and Titans): "Everyone says they love watching smashmouth football. Really? All the head-hunting and injury timeouts made the Ravens' three-game postseason nunwatchable. By the end of the Titans and Steelers games, the trainers had spent as much time on the field as some of the players. There was no flow and very few memorable plays." (Here's a link to the rest of Perloff's excellent column.)

From my standpoint, here were the memorable plays:
1. Ray Lewis' excellent tackle that forced the Willie Parker fumble in the first half
2. The Stillers fourth-down stop that immediatley followed that fumble.
3. Holmes' great TD catch and run.
4. Sweed's drop
5. Polaumalu's interception

That's five memorable plays, not too bad. But, there sure were a lot of ugly-looking plays.

Anyhow, congrats to the 'Stillers. The game against 'Zona should be played in better weather in Tampa, so maybe we'll see some offense, or at least a few sacks of Warner.

Monday, January 05, 2009

Wii fun

Whatever anyone says about the Wii and how cool it is and how much fun... is likely right. I generally don't like video games, because you're pretty much just using your hands and eyes, but you can really get a good workout with the Wii. And it's very easy to do. Not a lot of buttons to learn and press. My son got one for his birthday with the sports package, and we've been having great fun with it. And, I'll admit I'm a little sore today.