Tuesday, July 29, 2008

The Big One

We just had an earthquake in LA. The news said it was estimated to be a 5.6

It rumbled for a while - thought it was the big one the longer it went - maybe I should get the survival kit ready - the Lionel Richie albums managed to stay on the wall - actually, nothing fell off the shelves

When I went out onto the balcony/walkway after it was over it felt like the building was still swaying.

Monday, July 28, 2008

MSSA in the News

Downey High wrestler with staph infection dies
The 17-year-old was hospitalized for 20 days. Illness can be spread by skin-to-skin contact, dirty towels.
LA Times, Mary Engel, 7/25/08

The infection was caused by methicillin-sensitive Staphylococcus aureus, or MSSA, Magaña said.

Another form of S. aureus, known as MRSA for "methicillin-resistant," tends to get more publicity because it has grown resistant to methicillin and some other antibiotics. But infectious disease specialists say that both forms can be deadly if they move from the skin, where they normally reside, into the bloodstream and organs.

Public health experts recommend hand-washing, showering, laundering towels and uniforms in hot water and disinfecting gym equipment to prevent transmission.

They also recommend keeping an eye on rashes and other bumps, especially if they are accompanied by fevers and chills.


Salva Las Trocas

The folks at Save Our Taco Trucks, now have t-shirts.


No word if any of the proceeds from the t-shirt sales will go to help the fight or not.

Last Week's News

Red Sox outfielder Jacoby Ellsbury at bat.

I went to the Red Sox-Angles game in Anaheim last week. It was in the mid 80's, when I arrived around the second inning. Parking was $8. The handicapped parking lot was full, so I got to park in the Diamond Club lot. I was able to walk up to the ticket window and get a seat just under the shed (rendering the bulky tube of sunscreen I brought unnecessary) along the right field line even with the foul pole.


Though I associate it with minor league promotions like whopper eating contests, I'd like to shoot a t-shirt gun.

Are fireworks necessary for every home run? Act like you've been there before.

The Sox were up 2-0 in the seventh, there was no rally monkey in sight and then it all fell apart. The monkey appeared after the Angeles followed a solo home run, by getting a man on first with no outs. Safe call, Anaheim.

I had a great view of Coco Crisp's catch against the wall that ended the disastrous seventh.

You can see the game perfectly from the concessions concourse.

Pacifico Bombers (24 oz.) were $12. A 12 oz Guinness was $9.

Hot dogs were $3. Mine was left in the warming drawer for too long. The bun was the consistency of a stale baguette.

Panda Express looked to be the the most upscale food outside of the stadium club. You gotta do better than that Anaheim. I'm might be going out on a limb here but how about some tasty tacos.

The smartest guys in the stadium are the ice cream hawkers. Their bag has dry ice in it. Most of them had the flap open - cheap air condition.

The dumbest guys in the stadium are the California Pizza Kitchen hawkers. They have to carry a large awkward bag and the pizza must remain flat so the cheese doesn't slough off. Note to the CPK hawker in my section, you can't shout, "Pizza Here!" in a New York accent if the pizza has goat cheese and red onion on it.


I was completely surrounded by Angeles fans. It was my first Anaheim game in a few years and I was surprised to see so many Angeles fans. Red Sox games in Anaheim used to feel more like a home game.

When I got to my row, I sat in the empty aisle seat rather than wade into the row. After an inning or so the seat's rightful owner a man I'll call Aisle Bubba appeared.

"That's my seat!" I stood up and began to move towards my seat.
"The next one's my wife! I figured I tell you."
"Good lookin' out, I'll just take my seat down there."

Both Aisle Bubba and his bride grumbled every time I left my seat.

There were two drunk ladies to my right. The alpha kept laughing the whole time "Woooo hooooooo, woooo hoooo." They took a three inning beer break.


Sixth inning, drunk Angeles fan to his lady: "One more beer and we'll find our seats."

Angeles Stadium Crowd: "Red Sux! Red Sux! Red Sux!" Try harder Anaheim.

"Coco Crisp? His father must be Count Chocula." Again, try harder.

"This ain't the east coast! This is a real city!"

Was he referring to Los Angeles or Anaheim, home of Shoppertainment Drive? Judging by the conversation to my left, Anaheim, might have an inferiority complex. A complex enforced by the teams insistence on calling themselves, The Los Angeles Angeles of Anaheim. Take heart Anaheim you have both the Mouse's house and Knott's Berry Farm.

Shoppertainment Drive. Really, Shoppertainment?

Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia on the big board.

Notice the Los Angeles, on top of the board? Team owner Artie Moreno, needs to give up his quest to re-brand the Anaheim Angeles, The Los Angeles Angels at Anaheim. Anaheim is located in Orange County, 29 miles southeast of downtown Los Angeles. Besides being geographically incorrect and incredibly stupid, it's insulting to Angels fans.

The view from my seat.

I took the 5 north back to LA. Traffic was stop and go until I reached the 10 west.

An Orange County Trailer Park.

It's not everyday you're driving next to the Coroner Field Response Unit.

Football Jones


I had to get a football fix this weekend so I went to the Dallas Cowboys training camp in Oxnard, CA. Oxnard is about an hour and a half north of LA. I took the 405 north to the 101 north. The training facility (River Ridge Field) is less than a mile from the highway.

Parking was $10 for passenger cars and $20 for oversized vehicles. Entrance to the camp itself is free. The 'capper pass got me preferred parking right next to the field.

I watched the Defensive Linemen and Linebackers hit the sled before moving over to the main field to watch the offense and defense go at it without their lines.

Defensive Linemen

Chris Canty (On the left, listed at 6'7", 304 pounds) is a large man.

Kicker Nick Folk (6). He was my fantasy football kicker last year. I know, no one cares but me.

Bum Phillips' kid. Tracy Phillips' father

Kick off coverage

Adam "Don't call me Pacman" Jones (DB, 21).

The crowd got excited when Terrel Owens lined up against Pacman with Tony Romo (QB) throwing. TO beat Pacman to make the grab.

Terrel Owens

Half of Romo's throws were to Terrel Owens. TO had several nice grabs. He recovered a Romo interception in traffic after it was bobbled by the defensive back.

All three Dallas networks were represented.

Jason Whitten (TE) was on the opposite side of the field from me so I didn't get a close look at him but he did have a few receptions from Romo.

The area around the running backs was crowded so I only saw Marion Barber (RB) briefly.

I didn't see Zach Thomas (LB). Honestly, I wasn't looking for the former Dolphin. I had forgotten that he signed with the Cowboys.

Backup quarterback Brad Johnson who is in his 17th season threw a lot of passes early in the session.

Wide receiver Terry Glenn was listed on the roster but cut by the Cowboys last week after refusing to add an injury clause to his contract. Provided he's healthy and remains so, some team is gonna get a very good receiver. I wonder if the Eagles are interested?

Fearing Sunday afternoon traffic on the 405 south, I cut off of the 101 south at Kanen Dune road. Kanan Dune slices right through the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area en route to the PCH (Pacific Coast Highway).

I made it home in time for the Red Sox Yankees game.

The Cowboys training camp runs through Tuesday, August 12th. Check the Cowboy's Training Camp page for a schedule.


When the linebackers took their turn at the sled one guy kept shouting, "Let's go Ware! Superbowl bound!"

Father to his son:

"See that Nathan? They hustle the whole time; no slackin." Little Nathan was eight or nine. He's sure to duct tape an innocent in the high school locker room someday.


Saturday, July 26, 2008

Things I like about New England

Clothes Lines

Compost Piles

17 World Championships - Thanks again, Jimmy.

Out with the old in with the new

I said goodbye to a couple of old friends this summer and hello to a new one.

1987 Toyota Camry - A faithful steed, wish I'd known her in her younger days.

1987 Jeep Cherokee - Oh the times we had. Rest well, old friend. Rest well.

2008 Volkswagon Rabbit - We're just getting to know each other.

Hopefully, through organ donation the Camry & the Jeep will live on.

The new Bunny brings things full circle, as my first car was a old school Rabbit that my folks gave me.

That's the Waterfront Cafe at Venice Beach on the right side of the Bunny. Go have an Erdinger on the patio and watch the parade of people go by as the sun goes down. Be friendly and you're sure to meet some characters.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008


New England Patriots Tackle Nick Kaczur

Patriots lineman due in court on drug charge
Boston Globe, 7/22/08

Kaczur was arrested on April 27 when he was stopped for speeding outside Utica, N.Y., and police allegedly found a small amount of oxycodone, the main ingredient in the prescription drug OxyContin. The 315-pound tackle then cooperated with the Drug Enforcement Administration in a sting operation that resulted in the indictment of his alleged drug supplier.

Kaczur was driving 76 miles an hour in a 65-mile-per-hour zone on the New York State Thruway when police pulled him over and discovered a "small amount of controlled substance for which he did not have a prescription," according to New York State Police Sergeant Kern Swoboda. Kaczur was charged with criminal possession of a controlled substance in the seventh degree, which is a misdemeanor.

Kaczur, 28, wore a hidden recording device during three different drug transactions in May at gas stations in Foxborough and North Attleborough and a supermarket parking lot in Sharon, according to federal court documents. At each of the three transactions, Kaczur paid $3,900 in cash to buy 100 OxyContin pills, a potent prescription pain reliever.

You wanted the drugs, you got caught, be a man, eat the misdemeanor.

That being said:

I don't doubt for a minute that a 315 pound NFL tackle needs some pain relief.

How much is a small amount?

Did a small amount necessitate a DEA sting?

Why were the buys for one hundred pills?

Eleven miles over the limit? It must have been a slow day on the NY Thruway.

How did the police discover the narcotics during a routine speeding stop?

Sunday, July 13, 2008

"Go put your gold in the toilet."

Oil is passe. The next wars will be fought over water & food.

Waste? Not
We all produce a rich resource in our homes and then spend millions of dollars to throw it away. A new movement says there are smarter ways to think about waste.
Rebecca Tuhus-Dubrow, Boston Globe, 7/13/08J
This neglected treasure is human waste. Urine is rich in nitrogen, potassium, and phosphorus, the three main ingredients in artificial fertilizer. Feces contains these nutrients, too, in smaller doses, and the methane it produces can be harnessed as biogas, a green energy source.

Both methods - and several others between the extremes - pose problems that grow more conspicuous every day. As the developing world has grown more crowded and urban, the lack of adequate sanitation has become a public health crisis. In America and other developed countries, the system works much more smoothly, but uses enormous quantities of clean water - about 4,000 gallons per person each year - and requires massive amounts of energy and money to treat the resulting sewage.

"Some of our farmers say, 'We used to think poop was dirty, but now it's our gold,' " says Simpson-Hebert. "They won't let their children defecate in the open. They say, 'Go put your gold in the toilet.' "

Drink Up

Sewage in O.C. goes full circle
LA Times, 1/2/08

As a hedge against water shortages and population growth, Orange County has begun operating the world’s largest, most modern reclamation plant – a facility that can turn 70 million gallons of treated sewage into drinking water every day.

Basically, the facility takes treated sewage, which would have been discharged into the sea, and runs it through an advanced filtration system.

Officials say the final product is as clean as distilled water and so pure that lime has to be added to it to keep it from leaching minerals out of concrete pipes, thus weakening them.

Officials say the reclamation process uses less electricity than moving the same amount water to Orange County through the state’s system of aqueducts. The California State Water Project consumes about a fifth of the energy used in the state.

Wednesday, July 09, 2008



" . . . there have been similar reports by Purchas from Popayán, Colombia, and from the Marquesas Islands of Polynesia, where human flesh was called long-pig (Alanna King, ed., Robert Louis Stevenson in the South Seas, London: Luzac Paragon House, 1987: 45-50)."

ha ha ha long-pig - two days later and I'm still laughing

man is now known as the long-pig

the long-pigs and their silly combustion engines

keep a bucket handy