Friday, November 11, 2005

When the weirdness rains, it pours!!!

One of the really nice (joking of course) things about living in this time is that there is sooo much that occurs, so much to make one scratch the head and ask 'what were the folks smoking and where can I not get any?'. It can boggle the mind, such as the following that has happened just since the last post from the keyboard:

- Seattle, that other bastion of crazed liberal thought to the north of here decided to do something that makes sense. In the last election, they turned down a plan to expand the monorail which currently runs between Downtown Seattle (The Westlake Shopping Center) and Seattle Center. YES!!!! Some folks have the seen the devil behind the details.

While it will give that 'Jetsons meets Logan's Run' type of look to the city, who in their right mind would want all of this concrete running through town?? Not to mention this will interfere with those views of the sound and sunsets that the city is known for when the clouds and fog lift. Plus the city already is building a new mass transit system that will be more efficient-even if a lot of it is based on light rail and subways. In fact, yours truly had been involved in the effort to get this type of plan passed back in the 90's, which passed the King County vote, but did not in Pierce and Snohomish (the counties to the south and north of Seattle). While having a new LRT system is not going to cure all of the transit ills, it is better than betting the farm on a system that would end up being an eyesore.

- Well the NFL looks as though they are going to try to run this play til they get it right. It seems that they want to place another team in the Los Angeles area... AGAIN . Yes, it is the second largest television market in the US and the only one of the top 50 that does not have an NFL team, but after the last two bolted, why??Makes as much sense as wehn Bud Wilkinson , as coach of the Cardinals switched their offense to the Wing-T, something that worked in college but not at the pro level.

Let's go over the facts of this situation: When the Rams were in LA; they intially played at the Coliseum; which while they had large crowds, they rarely sold the place out. This especially became evident after the blackout rules were changed in the 70's (by a threat of Congress, no less) which as a result meant that LAX was shut out of watching on home television some of the more 'attractive' games that had involved the Rams. On top of that, the ballpark is located in a section of town that is not considered to be all that safe, even when USC plays their home games there. And in typical LA fashion this story gets even stranger because...

In the late 70's the Rams then left LA proper to play their home games in a (bastardized) Anaheim Stadium [Funny, they were not called the Los Angeles Rams of Anaheim]. This move was prompted by the enclosing of that ballpark and the construction of skyboxes for the few, the proud, the ones with a little too much money, but not enough sense to remember they are watching the Rams. The problems with the lack of sellouts still plagued the team because: 1.Fans were trapped on Interstate 5 trying to get out to Orange County to the ballpark, 2.Many of the sightlines in the park were POOR as far as football is concerned, 3. The teams for the most part had a habit of stinking up the joint and lastly 4. On Sunday afternoons in the fall, some would rather spend time on the beach or with family then see a bunch of whinning adult babies not trying to play a game they get paid very well for. Of course after a few years of this and losing money, they left LA for St Louis and a spanking new ballpark, with all the goodies that would make most team owners salivate. However, this void was soon to be filled by...

Darth Vader, oops I mean the Oakland Raiders. Yep-my man Al Davis (I cut him some slack on this because, after all he is an ex-Brooklyn kid) moved the Raiders from the Bay Area to LA, but not for the green pastures of the Coliseum. Or even the planned ballpark in Irwindale (LOL). Nope, Al did this because there was something else on the horizon that would make his team an insane amount of money (or at the time it was being seriously discussed), as well as others. Pay Per View TV for select games.

Yep you read that right, PPV. This came out during the testimony in the lawsuit Davis filed against the NFL with regard to their rules against a team being relocated without a vote by the fellow owners. Apparently, the LA market is so coveted because while fans may not turn out for the games (the Raiders when they were in LA, even when they won the Super Bowl averaged bet 55,000 and 59,000 per game and rarely, sold out the place) would be more than happy to pay $4.50 or more for a game that they want to see from the comfort of their own homes. The plan after that case was shelved, the Raiders moved back to Oakland (to a ballbpark with the skyboxes out in center field refered to as condominiums). However in an ironic twist, the NFL has its own network and is now considering again PPV for games moved to prime time on Thursday Nights. Stay tuned, because there has been a very nasty rumour floating around that the Super Bowl may go to PPV by the middle of this century [to quote Gordon Gecko from Wall Street, 'Greed, for lack of a better word is good').

-This next one brought a smile to the face because, I love cats (live with two of them, Rachel and Marissa) and this was another example of the will to survive. In fact the cat in this pic, bears a strong resemblance to Rachel in that she is Maine Coon/Tabby Mix. By the by the Maine Coons are known for beingvery smart, true longhairs, big boned (not fat, this is an adaptation over time by evolution), their fur can be any color and like Siamese and good old alley cats are very very loyal. Oh yeah, she may look a little upset, but heck wouldn't you be after an ordeal like this and then had cameras shoved in the face? Then again Rachel and Marissa look at me like that (Marissa is a black Siamese/Burmese mix) give me that look when it is time to fill the dish or when they see me spending too much time on the net.

One last item to consider folks. Last night NBC closed out the Nightly News with a report on the state, or lack therof of language. In particular how the slang that is common on the net and in other places has not just crept into daily casual usage; but how it has changed even business correspondence. So much so that corporations are now sending their managers to 'remedial business English' classes. Maybe this is not a sign of a collapse, but when standard parlance of commerce is replaced with smiley faces and other 'cutespeak', commerce as well as other parts of the society are heading for trouble. Unlike a rock rolling down a mountain, we can put the brakes to this before there is a crash.

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