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Robert Osborne

March 6, 2017

RIP Robert Osborne

I loved watching him almost as much as I did the movies he introduced. I feel lucky that I was able to listen to, and benefit from, his knowledge and insight about movies.

Me, Myself & Grey’s Anatomy

February 24, 2017

Every Thursday evening at about 8:01 I ask myself why I’m still watching Grey’s Anatomy. I turn off the television and I say to myself, “Michael, why are you still watching Grey’s Anatomy?” I think about that question and I realize I don’t have a good answer for myself. In addition to that, I think – for the 14th time this season – that I dislike most of the current cast. Bailey was never one of my favorites, but I don’t like her anymore. I used to like Jo but I don’t like her anymore either. I don’t like DeLuca and I don’t like Riggs and I can’t stand Edwards, Pierce, Murphy, Shepherd, Minnick or Catherine.

“You know what, Michael? I don’t know why I’m still watching.” I answer myself.

“There must be some reason.”

“Well,” I say. “I like the Chief (yes, I still refer to Webber as the “Chief”) a lot. And I like Grey and Karev even though they haven’t been featured very much this year. And Ben and Arizona are OK.”

I’m not convinced and I apply the pressure to myself. “That’s it, three characters and two, ‘Meh’?”

“I like Bokhee.”

“Huh?”

“Bokhee. She’s that nurse who’s in the operating room a lot.”

“Oh.” I pause wondering how I even know her name. “Does she ever have any lines?”

“I think she’s had a few over the years.”

I’m getting frustrated and feeling confrontational now. ““A few over the years”. So you like only three characters, dislike twice that many, have two that are just ‘Meh’ and one who never has any dialogue or is involved in any storyline? Tell me why you’re still watching.”

I sure know how to push my buttons and I’m feeling the pressure. “Well, I forgot Avery and Hunt and I like them both even though Avery doesn’t do much and they’ve pretty much taken Hunt and turned him from this confident, rugged and flawed character into little more a wimpy milksop. And . . .”

I’m struggling for more.

I see myself struggling and I don’t let myself off that easy. “What about the storylines? The drama?”

“Uh, they’re not so interesting or as much fun as they used to be.”

“And yet you continue to watch. Tell me why you’re still watching.”

“I already asked me that.”

“Well, I didn’t answer myself. Tell me why you’re still watching.”

Before I can answer I ask speak up again. “Wait, who’s Catherine?”

“Jackson’s mom, the Chief’s wife?”

“Oh, Debbie Allen.”

“Yeah.”

“She was good in Fame.”

“She was great in that movie!”

“I love that movie!”

“Me too. Remember the lunch room scene where they all . . . Wait, let’s get back to Grey’s. You don’t like anyone on the show anymore so tell me why you’re still watching.”

“I’m watching because . . . “

“Yes?”

“Because I . . .”

“I’m waiting.”

“You don’t have to pressure me so much. I’m trying to tell you why and you keep talking over me. What, now you have nothing to say?”

“I’m keeping quiet so you can answer.”

“Oh.”

“So? Tell me why you’re still watching.”

And then it hits me. I look myself in the face and tell myself why I’m still watching. “You know how you had friends years ago back in high school and how over the years you just drifted apart? You all went your own way and started your own lives? Well, even though you’ve grown apart they’re still old friends and you don’t want to lose touch and when you see each other, whenever that is, it feels good; it feels comforting.”

“So it’s just a Thursday night habit?”

“Don’t mock me.”

“Or little more than meatloaf.”

“Don’t mock me!”

“I’m not mocking you.”

“Yes, you are.”

“I’m . . .”

“And you do it a lot.”

And you do it a lot.

“See?”

“Go to bed.”

“I’ll go to be when I’m tired.”

“You’re tired now.”

“How do you know? You’re not me.”

“Yes I am.”

“Oh, yeah.”

“Next Thursday?”

“Next Thursday.”

“Good night.”

“Good night.”

Simplicity

February 16, 2017

Simple lyrics, a simple melody and a simple philosophy with just a touch of harmonica. I think maybe that’s not such a bad way to live.

I wonder whatever happened to my old Ozark Mountain Daredevil-listening pals. . . All scattered now to parts unknown. Maybe when they listen to the OMD they think of me like I think of them.

Happy Birthday

February 16, 2017

Happy Birthday, Dad. I miss you.

Play Ball! (Almost)

February 13, 2017
Well Twins fans, we made it! Pitchers and catchers report to Spring Training in Florida today. The weather forecast for Ft. Meyers is 80° and partly cloudy with a 20% chance of rain.
So who has an answer to my (long) Minnesota baseball question? I don’t understand why there are rumors continuing to circulate that the Twins would still be interested in re-signing Justin Morneau.120x120_logo_2010_bball
Here’s how I see it:
 
Justin Morneau: Plays first base and is an injury-plagued 35-year-old, left-handed hitter who can’t hit left-handed pitchers, can no longer hit for average or power. Basically at this point in his career a platoon player.
 
Joe Mauer: Plays first base and is an injury-plagued 33-year-old, left-handed hitter who can’t hit left-handed pitchers, can no longer hit for average or power. Basically at this point in his career a platoon player.
 
By signing Morneau, the Twins would only be taking designated hitter at bats away from Miguel Sano (age 23) and Kennys Vargas (age 24), two guys who need at bats to develop and grow, and also from Joe Mauer which would make him even less valuable and his $23 million salary even more unappetizing. And what’s the return? Two below-average first baseman and two roadblocks to younger players. So what am I missing here? Is it the fact that Morneau would probably sign for around a million dollars that’s appealing to the team, or does management think that Minnesota Twins fan care less about winning baseball games than they do seeing a revolving door of familiar faces from the good old days go in and out of the clubhouse every year?
 
This is a sad (and cynical) thought, but maybe I’m way off base thinking about a winning baseball team here in Minnesota and maybe the reality is that baseball here is really nothing more than a way to drink, eat and socialize outdoors, and the focus is less on the team’s place in the standings, but on a bobblehead, or a mini souvenir baseball bat, or on a Dairy Queen cap, or Minnesota Twins branded BBQ tongs and the other various promotion nights throughout the season.
Baseball hit
I love the Twins and I always will, but sometimes I wonder what it might be like to be a baseball fan in New York, Chicago or St. Louis. Maybe if you’re in one of those cities and you’re reading this you can tell me what it’s like to live in a city where baseball is something more than a chance to sit in the sun and eat hot dogs.
 
Anyway, game one in 11 days against the Tampa Bay Rays. Go Twins!

Being ‘Less’ American

January 29, 2017

First they came for the Muslims, and I did not speak out . . .

Welcome to the reality of life in the new Bannon/Trump America and the second day of being less American. But no one can say “I didn’t know he’d do that” because the guy’s been promising to do just that for months.

I’m curious what the team of Bannon & Trump have up next after “extreme vetting” has taken hold? Deportations? Roundups and resettlement into barbed wire topped “internment” camps? Gas chambers might be a unique and effective method for dealing with the “Muslim problem” and hasn’t been used for a while.

“Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me, I life my lamp beside the golden door!” Sad to see how tarnished that golden door has become in just one week
#neveragain #weareallmuslim

Living in a Swamp

January 23, 2017

live-in-a-swamp

Feel free to copy if you want.

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