Friday, April 22, 2005

Rich Harden is kicking some serious ass right now. Go A's!

About two or three years ago, my friend Jason had moved to Oakland and we began following the A's more closely. Since I live in Oakland, and am also a Green Bay Packer fan, making the leap to root for the Green and Gold in Oakland was a no brainer. There's a lot to like: Underdog, small market team with a low payroll, yet they consistently do well year in and year out thanks to Billy Beane's smart management. I'm not going to claim to be a baseball expert, so I'm not going to chime in with a lot of stats, but the sense I get is this: Trading Mulder and Hudson in this past offseason is looking better and better each inning Harden pitches. They themselves say he's got better stuff than they do. But the big plus is the help we've gotten in the bullpen. Last year at about this time, our starters were doing their job, only to have someone in the bullpen blow the game.

This year, the pitching is good all around, except Zito's had a few stinky innings that have decided the outcome of the game. Our hitting could be better. Once Chavy breaks out of his slump and someone else steps up, that will hopefully change. Swisher looks promising. I'm not so certain that we need to keep putting Kielty in there.

Wednesday, April 20, 2005

I guess I should have looked sooner, but David Byrne's Journal (don't call it a blog!) is quite an engaging read. And I guess I should take heed of the "don't call it a blog" advice. I've been writing Journals since 1990 on paper, but the past year or two have seen my writings split between places like this and actual paper. Oftentimes it's the mundane, but every once in a while I hit a nerve. I'm often too lazy to compose my thoughts, certainly on a sustained basis like Mr. Byrne. But it's a little unfair. I'm caught in a debt/work trap and have to spend most of my day doing work I don't want to be doing, and I'm a little drained for the creativity part. That will change in a couple of years, once the plan my wife and I have put in place finally gets rolling.

Construction of the in-law unit has been delayed again, this time due to a problem with the foundation. So...we wait. While followers of Lyndon Larouche move in the upstairs unit in our current apartment and make noise until 3 or 4 in the morning. And we wait.

David Byrne and Talking Heads changed my life. I was living in Berlin, Wisconsin, vaguely dreaming of playing/writing music, but those dreams hadn't coalesced in terms of the direction I wanted to GO. "I Zimbra" changed that in an instant, one evening some time in 1985. It would take me a while before things clicked for me in my own attempts, ten years in fact.

The first result was a crude, haphazard four and eight track recording called "Handsome Western States," and our group name: Beulah. All that has come and gone by now, and here I sit, cubicled, waiting for the next move.

I'm putting the finishing touches on my musical journey, probably more of a comedy than anything, but there is a hearty section on Beulah that most people will probably want to read it for, and I'm trying to get the tone right. It's difficult. Writing about my earlier life in bands is easy, because mostly I can put it off as comic farce, a Spinal Tappian (to give it an academic flair) odyssey of gigs in hospital parking lots, junior high dances, and the like. I formed my first rock band in a church. Not many people can probably claim that...at least any that have gone beyond the bedroom or a few local clubs.

Anyway, more to come. I'll probably be launching my own website soon, and this page will disappear. I will then come out and identify myself in earnest, and stop writing cryptically and quasi anonymously. Then again, I'm pretty much anonymous anyway. And bored out of my fucking mind as of late.

I have an exciting trumpet session trip to Seattle this weekend, though. I'll post when I return.

Friday, April 15, 2005

Thursday, April 07, 2005

Excuse the ignorance of details, but something's going on here. Why would someone flat out say that the market was "extremely overbought?"

I don't suppose politics have anything to do with it? There is no collusion in the Energy industry. The market does what the market does, right? There are no implications in knowing that the White House and both houses in Congress are GOP controlled, with oil men entrenched in all branches, correct? Demand going up 2% in the U.S. is enough to double gas prices? "Tightening supply?" Please elaborate what that means. "Increased restrictions?" Are you trying to blame this on clean air laws? Where are the numbers? I'll bet they don't add up.

It's said that psychology is the driving force behind economics. If that's so, then the U.S. Government is driving that psychology, as it relates to Energy in general and oil/gas in particular, in an upward direction. Market experts are saying one thing, but official U.S. sources are saying another. We couldn't trust Bush/Cheney with Iraq, why should we trust them on this? Excuse me if this explanation seems simplistic.