Delenda Est Carthago

Why not delve into a twisted mind? Thoughts on the world, history, politics, entertainment, comics, and why all shall call me master!

Location: Mesa, Arizona, United States

I plan on being the supreme dictator of the country, if not the world. Therefore, you might want to stay on my good side. Just a hint: ABBA rules!


Black Friday always brings out the "best" in people

Long Island Wal-Mart worker trampled to death by shoppers. When people were told they had to leave because someone was dead, they whined that they had been in line for over a day and kept shopping. A pregnant woman was also injured, but there seems to be conflicting reports about her and whether she miscarried or not.

Two dead at a California Toys "R" Us after an argument turns into a gunfight.

This is why I never go shopping on Black Friday. We see stories like this every year, and every year stores continue this idiotic tradition of opening early and promising bargains and people keep falling for it. Man, I hate people sometimes.

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What have we learned - Week 12

You know what we learned? We learned that it's time for me to stop watching professional football this season. Oh well. Therefore, we'll have a truncated post, as I simply don't care about the pros ... well, most of them!

Penn State won the Big Eleven by thumping Michigan State 49-18, and anyone who claims Ohio State is the co-champion can suck it, just like they could in 2005. The situations are the same: in both years, the teams had the same conference record, which means the Big Eleven allows them to share the title. But in both years, Penn State had a better overall record (11-1 to 10-2) and they beat Ohio State head-to-head. Only in a universe that wants Ohio State or Michigan to always be Big Eleven champion does this situation stand. The Big Eleven should tell Ohio State they can't call themselves co-champs. Sheesh. However, the Lions are going to the Rose Bowl, where they may play Oregon State, who escaped Tucson with a two-point win over Arizona. The Beavers have to beat Oregon in Corvallis this weekend, which is no easy feat, as although it's a home game for OSU, Eugene isn't that far away and the crowd will probably be split. I have no interest in doing the research, but I wonder how many times a bowl game has featured a rematch from that season. Many people do not want a Penn State-Oregon State Rose Bowl because the Lions thumped the Beavers earlier this year, but OSU is playing much better these days. Of course, many people don't want it because they can't stand the thought of USC not playing in the Rose Bowl, but I say that the Trojans probably should have shown up for their game in Corvallis. Suck it, Trojans! In other collegiate news, Wisconsin almost lost to a Division 1-AA team (Cal Poly) at home. Cal Poly missed three PATs and a field goal. Man, the Badgers suck this year. Texas Tech lost by 44 points and is still ranked ahead of Penn State in the BCS standings. Oklahoma is whining about Texas being ranked ahead of them, but the Longhorns beat the Sooners, so suck it, Oklahoma! (Yes, a lot of teams can suck it today.) I really wish the pollsters had dropped Florida just because the Gators had the gall to schedule the Citadel in November. Penn State could conceivably play in the National Championship game - Alabama has to play Auburn and Florida, Florida has to play Florida State and Alabama, Texas has to play Texas A&M and Missouri (probably), Oklahoma has to play Oklahoma State and Missouri (if they get that far), Texas Tech gets to play Baylor, but if they get lucky and make it to the Big XII Championship Game, they have to play Missouri, and USC has a scrimmage against Notre Dame (who lost, wonderfully, to Syracuse at home) and a rivalry game against UCLA. Lots of things have to happen, but it could fall into place! I have a feeling that if, say, Alabama and Florida both lose before the SEC Championship Game, if Florida wins and therefore has two losses but is SEC Champ, they'll play for the National Championship before Penn State, who has one loss. Damn, we need a playoff. And then there's the Big East and the ACC, where the champions get a Big Bowl Bid. With apologies to Woody!, Cincinnati (which has the inside track to winning the Big East) doesn't deserve a BCS Bowl bid. That's a joke. You have to like what the Bearcats have done this year, but when they win a conference while playing their, what, fourth quarterback this season, that conference stinks. The Big East has been a joke since Miami, Virginia Tech, and Boston College left, but ironically, those teams have helped make the ACC a joke, too. Finally, back out west, Cal beat Stanford in the Big Game, and Washington State somehow defeated Washington in what had to be the worst college football game in history - it even went into overtime, for crying out loud!

As for the Eagles ... well, Andy Reid did the right thing and said he was starting Donovan McNabb at quarterback for Thursday's game. It won't make much difference, but McNabb deserves to start. I'm happy to see that not only pundits, but fans are starting to realize it's not McNabb, it's Reid. He needs to go. I only hope they get rid of him and bring in a coach who likes to run (Bill Cowher needs a job, doesn't he?) and decides to keep McNabb around. But I'm sick of pro football. Except ...

The Grey Cup has been won! Yes, the Canadian Football League held its championship game yesterday (for the 96th time, mind you - take that, Vince Lombardi Trophy!), and ex-Temple quarterback Henry Burriss led the Calgary Stampeders to a 22-14 win over the Montreal Alouettes. Of course Montreal lost - they're named after a children's nursery rhyme! Let's all give a cheer to quarterbacks from Temple U. winning the most coveted trophy in the entire world!

I haven't renounced my allegiance to the Eagles, but I may have to take a break from watching them for the rest of the season. I mean, that game was just sad ... and I only watched it until it was 15-7, Ravens. Imagine how stupid I would have felt if I had persisted in watching? Sheesh.

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What have we learned - Week 11

Jesus H. A tie? A freakin' tie? A GODDAMNED FUCKING TIE??????? Christ on a crutch.

Meanwhile, Penn State thumped Indiana, and for much of the game, the announcers kept talking about how good the Hoosiers were playing. I guess. It was 10-7, PSU, at the half, and it ended 34-7. But Indiana never had a chance, as anyone watching it could see. The only chance they had was if the Lions turned the ball over a lot, and once it became obvious they wouldn't do that, the outcome became a foregone conclusion. Meanwhile, Michigan lost its eighth game in a season for the first time in its 129-season history. That's fairly amazing. Northwestern got them this time, and I only hope that the Wolverines were saving up a good game for Ohio State, because if the Buckeyes win, they will claim they're co-champions of the Big Eleven like they did in 2005, even if in both years they had more total losses than Penn State and lost to Penn State. Go, Michigan! Tom renounced his allegiance to Cal after they lost in Corvallis to Oregon State, but the Beavers are, after all, better. I'm hoping that OSU wins out so they go to the Rose Bowl and piss off USC. Suck it, Trojans! Everything stayed the same in the BCS, which means that the Lions will probably need a miracle to play for the National Championship or win the AP poll because the writers just want to stick it to the BCS. That would be nice. Of course, they need to beat Michigan State this weekend. Let's hope they don't screw that up!

Philadelphia 13, Cincinnati 13. So Donovan McNabb didn't know NFL games could end in ties. What a moron. There's so much that made me angry about this game. McNabb threw three interceptions in Bengal territory and fumbled at his own ten-yard line, and Cincy got 10 points out of those turnovers. DON'T TURN THE DAMNED BALL OVER, PLEASE! Whenever Philly got something going, McNabb would screw up. Jesus. And, because it's Cincinnati, they couldn't take advantage of anything. They had a fake punt on at one point, and it probably would have worked, but they were called for a delay of game penalty. Good job! Then, of course, they got within field goal range late in overtime ... and missed. That's why you're the Bengals. Fans in Philly are incensed about McNabb's idiotic statements (the only thing he can do now is say he was joking, even if he wasn't) and the Eagles' poor showing, and I agree to a degree. I've said this before - Andy Reid needs to go. I think McNabb still has some good years left in him, but it's just not working with the two of them. I think of it as the Dan Reeves/John Elway years - they went as far as they could go, and then Reeves had to go. Everyone thought Elway was done, but then they got Shanahan and won two Super Bowls. McNabb needs a new hand on his tiller, so to speak.
DeSean Jackson update! 4 catches for 66 yards, 2 rushes for 3 yards, 6 punt returns for 43 yards. For the season: 42 catches for 652 yards and 1 touchdown, 12 rushes for 79 yards and 1 touchdown, 33 punt returns for 341 yards.
Turnovers: Eagles 4, Bengals 1. Turnovers = loss? It should have, but it didn't. 0-0-1.

New York Jets 34, New England 31. I didn't watch this game, but I guess R. C. Favre had a good game while Matt Cassell just made a chunk of money by throwing for 400 yards. He's a free agent after this year, and someone is going to pony up some huge monies for him. When Sage Rosenfels starts NFL games, Cassell will be a rich man soon.
Turnovers: Jets 1, Cheaters 1. Turnovers = loss? It's a wash.

Denver 24, Atlanta 20. Denver finally beat a decent team on the road, but I was surprised that the Falcons hadn't lost a home game yet. Hmmm. Michael Turner is probably the best free agent pick-up this season, and Jay Cutler finally seems to be rounding into shape as a really good quarterback. Cutler took the Broncos right down the field late against a good defense for the winning touchdown. Denver won't go far in the playoffs this year, but at least they know their QB is really good.
Turnovers: Falcons 1, Broncos 0. Turnovers = loss? Sure! 1-0-1.

Green Bay 37, Chicago 3. In the latest round of "Who doesn't want to win the NFC North?", Da Bears got stomped by the Packers. Next week, I'm sure the Packers won't want to win the division. Damn. There are a lot of winnable divisions in the NFL this year, but unfortunately, the Eagles aren't in one. Yes, they would be leading the NFC North with their pathetic 5-4-1 record. Damn.
Turnovers: Da Bears 1, Packers 1. Turnovers = loss? Another wash.

Indianapolis 33, Houston 27. You know, as good as the Colts looked on offense (despite several dropped passes), they gave up 27 points to the Texans at home, and often looked inept on defense. Pundits were praising how the Colts are "rounding into shape" at the right time, but if they keep letting mediocre offenses rip through them, they won't make the playoffs, much less go far.
Turnovers: Texans 1, Colts 0. Turnovers = loss? Why not? 2-0-1.

New Orleans 30, Kansas City 20. I have nothing to say about this. The Chiefs stink, so a loss by them isn't surprising. The Saints aren't great, but they're good enough to beat the Chiefs. I guess the only surprising thing is that Drew Brees didn't throw for over 300 yards.
Turnovers: Saints 1, Chiefs 1. Turnovers = loss? Yet another wash!

Miami 17, Oakland 15. The Dolphins are really living on the edge, as the Raiders couldn't do anything on offense in this game, and then suddenly got a punt return for a touchdown and took a late lead. Miami drove down the field and got the game-winning field goal, but they're living dangerously, letting a team like Oakland hang around! Oh, and the Dolphins have won 4 straight games. Goddamnit. The Eagles can't put together two good quarters in a row, and the frickin' Miami Dolphins have won 4 straight games.
Turnovers: Dolphins 1, Raiders 0. Turnovers = loss? Not in this case. 2-1-1.

New York Giants 30, Baltimore 10. Before this game got out of hand, I watched a few minutes of it. Brandon Jacobs was just running over the Ravens. Seriously - they couldn't tackle him. Ray "The Killer" Lewis couldn't stop him. Terrell Suggs couldn't stop him. Ed Reed couldn't stop him. Bart Scott couldn't stop him. He was just running right over them. If I didn't hate the Giants, I would have enjoyed it a lot more. Of course, I hate the Ravens, so it was somewhat enjoyable. Man, the Giants are really good. Damn.
Turnovers: Ravens 2, Giants 1. Turnovers = loss? Probably not, but the stats don't lie! 3-1-1.

Tampa 19, Minnesota 13. In another round of "Who doesn't want to win the NFC North?", the Vikings went south and decided to stop playing football in the second half, as they were held scoreless. Tampa wasn't that great, but they did what they had to do. Jeff Garcia did a good job, and hey! didn't throw any interceptions! How about that? And the Buccaneers might have lost Ernest Graham for the season, which might suck for them. They're still 7-3, though.
Turnovers: Vikings 2, Buccaneers 1. Turnovers = loss? You bet! 4-1-1.

Carolina 31, Detroit 22. So the Lions are 0-10, and I'm really hoping they don't win a game. Not because I'm evil, but because it's just something historic. The Lions stink so bad that they should be honored for their suckiness. 2-14 won't do it, Detroit! Even Miami went 1-15 last year! Go for the 0-16, Detroit! On the other side, Carolina is 8-2. Guess what they did on Sunday? They had two runners go over 120 yards. Wow, shocking - running the ball helps you win ballgames. Maybe Andy Reid should takes notes. Stupid Andy Reid.
Turnovers: Lions 4, Panthers 1. Turnovers = loss? Of course - it's the Lions! 5-1-1.

San Francisco 35, St. Louis 16. I don't know how bad you have to be to give up 35 points in a half to the 49ers, but the Rams are that bad. I should point out that with slightly less than 19 minutes left in this game and trailing 35-3, the Rams kicked a field goal. That's why you're 2-8, St. Louis!
Turnovers: Rams 3, 49ers 2. Turnovers = loss? I guess! 6-1-1.

Arizona 26, Seattle 20. As bad as the Seahawks are, Arizona had lost 5 straight in Seattle, so this was a big victory for the Cardinals, especially with games against the Giants and a Thanksgiving game in Philadelphia coming up. The Cardinals continue to commit stupid penalties and make stupid plays - Karlos Dansby intercepted a ball in the end zone and tried to run it out, which led to a fumble back to Seattle and sparked their comeback - but Kurt Warner and the passing game is fun to watch. They'll get a home playoff game, so everyone in the country will have at least one chance to see what they can do in their house, where they've built a good homefield advantage.
Turnovers: Seahawks 4, Cardinals 3. Turnovers = loss? The final Seahawks turnover was an interception with less than two minutes to go, so I'll say yes. 7-1-1.

Tennessee 24, Jacksonville 14. All those people who said the Titans couldn't come back from a decent deficit can shut up now. What's next? "They can't beat a 'great' quarterback like R. C. Favre!" We'll see. I still doubt they're going undefeated, but as a Penn State fan, it's fun to watch Kerry Collins shutting everyone up.
Turnovers: Titans 1, Jaguars 1. Turnovers = loss? It's a wash.

Pittsburgh 11, San Diego 10. I'm not sure why everyone is so much more bent out of shape by the bad call at the end of this game than they were about the Denver-San Diego game, where the refs completely screwed up AND gave the game to Denver. I mean, the refs blew it in this game, but it's not like the Steelers would have lost without the touchdown. The points meant absolutely nothing. Unless, of course, you're a gambler or a fantasy football player. Oh, but the NFL doesn't want to acknowledge that, so they make a lot of noise about why the call was correct when it clearly wasn't. I get that they screwed up a call, but refs screw up calls all the time. Why was it a big deal this time? Does Troy Polamalu have a clause in his contract that gives him a bonus if he scores a touchdown. It meant nothing!!!!!!
Turnovers: Chargers 2, Steelers 0. Turnovers = loss? You bet (ha!). 8-1-1.

Dallas 14, Washington 10. Considering this featured two teams I absolutely loathe, I didn't watch any of it, but I guess now that Wonder Boy is back behind center, the Cowboys are once again Super Bowl favorites. Didn't any pundit learn a few months ago about anointing the Cowboys? Morons.
Turnovers: Cowboys 2, Washington 1. Turnovers = loss? Once again, the Cowboys lose the turnover battle but win the game. That won't cut it in the playoffs, gentlemen! 8-2-1.

Cleveland 29, Buffalo 27. I happened to catch the end of this game. Cleveland kicked the field goal to go ahead, and the Bills got the ball back. On the first play, they got a huge pass to the Cleveland 31- or 32-yard line. There was over a minute left. On first down they ran the ball and gained a yard. I said to my long-suffering and uncaring wife, "They're not even going to try to get any more yards, and this is a long field goal that is not a gimme." Cleveland's defenders were sucking wind, you could tell. Yet the Bills did exactly what I thought they would do, and Rian Lindell missed a 47-yard field goal that probably would have been good if they had gained five more yards on 1st, 2nd, or 3rd downs. I even said something about the Bills deserving to miss the field goal because of the totally wussy playcalling. Good move, Buffalo! That's why you've lost 4 straight games and 5 of 6.
Turnovers: Bills 4, Browns 0. Turnovers = loss? Yes, and the fact that the Bills had any chance to win this game doesn't speak well for Cleveland. 9-2-1.

Let's see ... teams that turn the ball over less than their opponents are now 98-29-1. I wonder if turning the ball over is a good idea?

Here are the standings based on turnover margin!

Tennessee: 10 turnovers, +10 margin, 10-0 record.
Kansas City: 12 turnovers, +9 margin, 1-9 record.
Cleveland: 10 turnovers, +8 margin, 4-6 record.
New York Giants: 10 turnovers, +7 margin, 9-1 record.
Miami: 8 turnovers, +7 margin, 6-4 record.
Green Bay: 11 turnovers, +7 margin, 5-5 record.
Indianapolis: 10 turnovers, +6 margin, 6-4 record.
Chicago: 15 turnovers, +6 margin, 5-5 record.
Arizona: 17 turnovers, +5 margin, 7-3 record.
Carolina: 15 turnovers, +3 margin, 8-2 record.
Atlanta: 10 turnovers, +3 margin, 6-4 record.
Philadelphia: 15 turnovers, +3 margin, 5-4-1 record.
Oakland: 14 turnovers, +3 margin, 2-8 record.
Washington: 9 turnovers, +2 margin, 6-4 record.
New England: 13 turnovers, +2 margin, 6-4 record.
Jacksonville: 11 turnovers, +2 margin, 4-6 record.
Tampa: 17 turnovers, +1 margin, 7-3 record.
New York Jets: 18 turnovers, +1 margin, 7-3 record.
Baltimore: 16 turnovers, +1 margin, 6-4 record.
Pittsburgh: 13 turnovers, +0 margin, 7-3 record.
Cincinnati: 19 turnovers, -2 margin, 1-8-1 record.
Seattle: 15 turnovers, -3 margin, 2-8 record.
New Orleans: 17 turnovers, -5 margin, 5-5 record.
San Diego: 15 turnovers, -5 margin, 4-6 record.
St. Louis: 18 turnovers, -6 margin, 2-8 record.
Dallas: 19 turnovers, -7 margin, 6-4 record.
Minnesota: 21 turnovers, -7 margin, 5-5 record.
Detroit: 17 turnovers, -7 margin, 0-10 record.
Buffalo: 22 turnovers, -9 margin, 5-5 record.
Denver: 20 turnovers, -10 margin, 6-4 record.
San Francisco: 25 turnovers, -12 margin, 3-7 record.
Houston: 22 turnovers, -13 margin, 3-7 record.

Finally, today is the thirtieth anniversary of "The Miracle at the Meadowlands." For those of you who don't know what that is, well, shame on you! On this date, the Giants were leading the Eagles, 17-12, with less than a minute left. Joe Pisarcik, the New York quarterback, tried to hand off to Larry Csonka instead of taking a knee. The exchange went wrong, the ball was fumbled, and Herm Edwards of the Eagles picked up the ball and raced into the end zone. The win helped the Eagles make the playoffs and helped lead to a Super Bowl appearance two years later. Needless to say, teams these days simply snap the ball and have the quarterback kneel down, mostly because of this play. I don't remember it, mostly because I was 7 years old and lived in Germany at the time, but if you're an Eagles fan, it's part of Eagles lore. Here's the video:

I love how they're showing the credits because they assume the game is over. Well, it was, but not the way they expected! And yes, young'uns, CBS once broadcast NFC games, unlike today, where they broadcast AFC games. Oh, the good old days!

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A few fun links while I'm still stewing about this weekend's football

I'll probably have something about football, but I'm just so grumpy about it. Until then, here's some fun links!

"Pornographic" snowboards? Why not? Okay, they're not really pornographic, but that doesn't mean uptight people can't call them that! Here's the original news story. Silly but fun!

Speaking of silly but fun, I'm sure many of you were unaware that a contest held last week in Paris crowned a man and a woman who had the world's best ... well, ass. Okay, it was called the "Best Bottom" contest, but we know it's all about the ass! Here and here are a few news stories about the huge event, and of course, there's a slideshow. Of course, if you don't want to click the link, I stole some pictures:

The guy is French, while the woman is Brazilian. Before you think, "Well, of course a Brazilian woman won!" last year's winner was Romanian. Eastern Europe represent! And I love that dude in the second picture. It's like it's the closest he's ever gotten to a woman's posterior and he's desperately trying not to drop the camera.

Finally, we get one of the spookiest photographs you will ever see:

What the crap is Ronald McDonald doing? Is he attempting some kind of mind control? The blog from where I snatched the photo has some theories.

Now I'm frightened and I need to go lie down. Brrrrr ...

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We could kind of see this coming

It's depressing whenever a large number of Americans, whatever the stereotype about them, live up to that stereotype. It's depressing and frightening when those stereotypes are of racist rednecks, but after our historic presidential election, it's not surprising that a lot of crazy people are coming out of the woodwork.

I don't even want to get into what people have been doing since the election. It's all at the link. It's just really sad. I know it means nothing, but I'd like to apologize to minorities everywhere for the idiocy of these people. Sheesh. What the hell is wrong with some people?

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Jews vs. Mormons!

Man, that would be a cool video game!

So this news story bugged me. Holocaust survivors are trying to stop the Mormon church from "baptizing" Jews killed in Nazi concentration camp posthumously. If you're wondering WTF?, well, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints baptizes people who are, you know, dead by proxy, where someone stands in for the dead person. This story is about an agreement made in 1995 between the Mormons and Holocaust survivors, but let's consider this idea of proxy baptism. How silly is that? I don't have a problem with current Mormons "baptizing" their non-Mormon ancestors, as weird as it is. But the Mormons baptize anyone they want, including people like Gandhi (I seem to remember hearing). I know it doesn't make any difference to the dead people, but does the Church now list Gandhi as a Mormon? That's just dumb.

I try not to pick on specific religions, even the truly wacky ones. I don't have a problem with Mormons believing this will reunite their current members with their ancestors, but why do dead people from around the world need to be Mormon? Will the Mormons in Heaven feel bad if Gandhi isn't with them?

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What have we learned - Week 10

What a crappy weekend. After some amazing karma recently around teams I root for, this weekend it all came crashing down. But I will soldier on!

What can we say about Penn State? They controlled the ball for 23 minutes in the first half against Iowa but could only get 13 points. I wanted them to score touchdowns, obviously, but I thought Iowa's defense would be worn down in the second half and they could put the Hawkeyes away. Inexplicably, it seemed that Penn State's defense was more tired in the second half! Could they have gotten cold, standing around so much in the first half? And then, when they had a chance late, both their offense and their defense let them down. On 3rd-and-24 with 3 minutes left, Daryll Clark threw into the wind trying to get a first down and the pass was intercepted. Had he thrown short and tried to get 10-15 yards, they might have gotten a field goal to go up 26-21. The way Iowa moved the ball on the last drive, however, a field goal might not have done anything, as the Lions' defense simply could not stop the Iowa quarterback. And so Penn State's undefeated season goes by the boards, and because everyone in the country was praying for no undefeated Big Eleven schools, their shot to be a one-loss team in the National Championship Game goes away too (yes, pundits were enjoying Paterno's ride and were cheering for him, but they really want a Big XII-SEC MNC game, because this year, those two conferences have been anointed as the "best" in the country). Of course, if they win out, they might have a slim chance to get there, but it's more likely they'll play in the Rose Bowl against an angry USC team. That doesn't fill me with confidence. Cal, meanwhile, put up a fight against the Trojans, but didn't really have much of a chance. My only hope is that Oregon State wins out (they beat UCLA on Saturday) and, amazingly, wins the Pac-10 (both the Beavers and Trojans have one conference loss, but USC's was against OSU, of course). Arizona quietly got its 6th win by hammering Washington State (granted, not a big deal), meaning the Wildcats are probably going to a bowl for the first time since 1998 (Wazzou, however, broke a string of - wait for it - 172 straight points that they had given up, so there's that). I'd like to discuss the Big XII or the SEC, but they make me so mad that I can't. Oklahoma, I think, will demolish Texas Tech, while Florida will beat Alabama in the SEC Title Game, and then we'll have about 8 teams from the power conferences with one loss. Which means Utah should play Ball State for the National Championship! Who's with me?!?!?

And then there's the pros. During the day, neither the Eagles nor the Cardinals were on, so I watched only sporadically. After the Giants dominated the early part of the game last night, I gave the wife a break and turned the game off, so I missed a lot of it. I'm just impressed the Eagles had a chance to win, given how badly they played early. So let's check things out!

New York Giants 36, Philadelphia 31. You know how I list the turnovers and how teams that win the turnover battle do? Well, there's a reason. The only way the Eagles are in this game is because of two first-half turnovers by the Giants. New York looked like they were playing a high school team, as they did whatever they wanted to the Eagles. That's why I turned the game off, because it had that feeling of getting ugly early on. However, two turnovers kept Philly in the game (and two turnovers of their own took them out) until two idiotic running plays late in the game sealed their fate. The Eagles have talent, but not as much as the other three teams in their division do. That's just the way it is so years - if they played in the NFC North, for instance, they might be 7-2. Oh well. They can still make the playoffs, but they have to play perfect football for 60 minutes, and the way McNabb seems to take 15-20 minutes of game time to warm up these days, that's probably not happening. Sad. Time is growing short in Philly for McNabb and Westbrook, and although I've backed off my statement about getting rid of Reid, I wonder what the team needs to do to get back on top. I really don't know. As for the G-Men ... yeah, they're good.
DeSean Jackson update! 4 catches for 61 yards, 3 carries for 24 yards and a touchdown, no punt returns. Season totals: 38 catches for 586 yards and 1 touchdown, 10 rushes for 77 yards and 1 touchdown, 27 punt returns for 298 yards.
Turnovers: Giants 2, Eagles 2. Turnovers = loss? It's a wash, but the Eagles outscored the Giants off of the turnovers, 14-6. That needs to be included in the box score!

Denver 34, Cleveland 30. This was a fairly entertaining game, mostly because these are two deeply flawed teams, which can often lead to entertaining football. Denver's defense made Brady Quinn look good, while Cleveland's defense allowed Jay Cutler to carve them up and rebound from a 23-13 deficit in the fourth quarter and, later, a 30-27 deficit with time running out. Long touchdown passes are usually because someone blows a coverage, and Eddie Royal's 93-yarder to spark the comeback was just that. I like Jay Cutler, but there's no way he's as good as he looked against the Browns. Finally, the play-calling on Cleveland's last drive was atrocious - they had 2nd-and-3 with a minute left, and they threw three straight bad passes instead of trying to pick up the first down. Don't put Quinn in that situation - run the ball!
Turnovers: Broncos 1, Browns 1. Turnovers = loss? Another wash.

Atlanta 34, New Orleans 20. I keep skipping Saints' games, and I really shouldn't, as Drew Brees is one of the most entertaining quarterbacks in the league right now. The Saints ran the ball 17 times and threw 58 times. That's not going to win you many football games, but it will make you interesting! I guess that's all they care about in New Orleans. Deuce McAllister played, but I don't know if he's healthy, because you have to run the ball more than that, don't you? As for Atlanta, while Matt Ryan is probably the shoo-in for rookie of the year, they're 2-3 on the road. It would be a minor miracle if they made the postseason, but that's probably good enough for them this year. Good for them, turning that mess around.
Turnovers: Saints 3, Falcons 0. Turnovers = loss? Yes, even before Brees had an interception returned 95 yards late in the game. 1-0.

Tennessee 21, Chicago 14. All the Titans-haters out there should probably take notice of this game - on the road, Tennessee rushed for 20 yards. On 29 carries. And still won, because Kerry Collins was flinging it all over the field! Okay, not quite, but the few times I turned this on, he was doing a nice job finding open receivers. Da Bears aren't as good as they used to be, of course, but their defense is still pretty strong, as the rushing stats indicate. They just couldn't stop the Titans when it mattered. I still don't think Tennessee is going undefeated, but this was a nice road win that proved they don't need to run the ball exclusively to win. The next step is a comeback from more than two touchdowns in the second half.
Turnovers: Titans 1, Da Bears 1. Turnovers = loss? Yet another wash.

Jacksonville 38, Detroit 14. I don't have anything to say about this game except that Detroit is really bad. Oh, and welcome back, Daunte Culpepper. Too bad it's with this team.
Turnovers: Lions 1, Jaguars 0. Turnovers = loss? Sure, why not? 2-0.

Miami 21, Seattle 19. I should have watched more of this game, because Miami is becoming quite fun to watch, but once it hit 14-0, I figured the Dolphins would cruise. More fool me, I guess, as the Seahawks found some pride and made it a game, failing to tie on a two-point conversion with three minutes left. Pundits keep claiming that teams will be able to defend the single wing that the Dolphins (and now other teams, including the Eagles) run, but nobody does. Why stop? Good for you, Miami!
Turnovers: Dolphins 1, Seahawks 0. Turnovers = loss? Not even losing the turnover battle can stop the Fish! 2-1.

Minnesota 28, Green Bay 27. I'm very sad that I didn't watch more of this game, as the Vikings got two safeties ... in a row! Leading 10-7, they got two to take a 14-7 lead. That's good stuff, people! Also, the way Adrian Peterson is running the ball in his second season may make me re-assess my "this guy is overrated" feeling I get with him. 192 yards, and it's not even close to his career high. Dang. I'll cling to my beliefs, though! AP is overrated! That's why ESPN should give me a show, 'cause I'm all controversial and shit! Oh, and if you haven't seen the punt return for a touchdown that gave the Packers the lead late, check it out. It's a classic of completely awful tackling by the Vikes.
Turnovers: Vikings 3, Packers 0. Turnovers = loss? Adrian Peterson wouldn't allow it! 2-2.

New England 20, Buffalo 10. You know, the Cheaters are the horror movie killer of the NFL. Last year, they got caught cheating. Did that kill them? No. They went undefeated until they got slapped around in the Super Bowl. Did that kill them? No. They came into this season as favorites to make it back to the big game, and then Brady went down in the first quarter of the first game. Did that kill them? No. They inserted a guy who hadn't started since high school and kept going. Then they got smacked around at home by Miami. Did that kill them? No. Now they're in goddamned first place in the goddamned division, and as I can't bring myself to root for the New York Favres, I'm pinning my hopes for the division title on a team that was 1-15 last year just because I hate the Cheaters so much. Thanks a lot, Bills. Good job screwing up whatever you were doing earlier in the year.
Turnovers: Bills 2, Cheaters 1. Turnovers = loss? That and the final NE touchdown drive, which took 19 plays - more than the Bills ran in the entire second half. 3-2.

New York Jets 47, St. Louis 3. You're St. Louis. R. C. Favre and his Rambling Jets hung 40 (!) points on you in the first half (I bet nobody thought anything could be worse than the 34-0 Jets lead at halftime against the Cardinals a few weeks back!). You get the ball to start the second half and drive it to the New York 19. Yes, it's 4th-and-7, but you're 2-6 and you're losing by 40. What do you do? If you said, "Kick a meaningless field goal instead of manning up and trying for a touchdown," congratulations! You can coach in the National Fear-of-Failure League, where all that field goal did was allow Jim Haslett, the coach of the Rams, to say, "Well, at least we didn't get shut out." No guts, no glory, St. Louis. Sheesh.
Turnovers: Rams 5, Jets 0. Turnovers = loss? Yes, but St. Louis is so awful is probably wouldn't have mattered. 4-2.

Baltimore 41, Houston 13. Hey, how about those Ravens and Joe Flacco? Flacco, the other rookie QB having a strong year, isn't as impressive as Matt Ryan simply because he went into a better situation. The Ravens were lousy last year, but they still have a solid defense, and they're committed to the run. Willis McGahee by himself had more rushes than Flacco had passes, but Flacco is making the most of his throws. I still don't like Baltimore because they employ a scumbag like Ray Lewis, but they have a nice, under-the-radar thing going on. As for Houston ... well, ESPN the Magazine claimed they would make the playoffs. Maybe in 2014.
Turnovers: Texans 4, Ravens 0. Turnovers = loss? Of course! 5-2.

Carolina 17, Oakland 6. It must be sad to be an Oakland Raider, beyond the financial reward of playing professional football. Andrew Walter, who starred at Arizona State, got the start yesterday, and I watched more than I should have because I was curious to see how he would do. He looked so good at ASU, but yesterday, he looked lost. Part of it was his fault, of course, but the offensive line gave him no protection, his receivers ran ugly routes and didn't look for the ball, and nobody could block Julius Peppers (which is not an uncommon occurrence, to be fair). The Raiders are a complete mess, and I feel bad for people like Walter who are just trying to make it in the NFL but get stuck on a dysfunctional franchise. Why does Randy Moss get to get out of there and rehabilitate his selfish image but nice guys like Walter are condemned to stay there?
Turnovers: Panthers 4, Raiders 3. Turnovers = loss? The only reason the Raiders were even close in this game was because Carolina seemed determined to make it interesting. 5-3.

Indianapolis 24, Pittsburgh 20. This game was not unlike the Penn State-Iowa game, as the Steelers dominated early but just couldn't put the game away. And, as we've seen far too many times in the past, if you give Manning any life whatsoever, he will rise from the almost-dead and slay you. Twice Ike Taylor could have intercepted a Manning pass, and twice it slipped through his fingers, once for the first Indy touchdown and later for a crucial first down. Those little plays are all Manning needs, and he made the Steelers pay. Too bad - I know the Colts have little hope of catching the Titans, but I was hoping we'd see an Indy-less postseason this year. It could still happen, but this would have gone a long way toward that.
Turnovers: Steelers 3, Colts 0. Turnovers = loss? You betcha. 6-3.

San Diego 20, Kansas City 19. I guess some people are banging on Herm Edwards for going for two at the end of this game instead of kicking the extra point and sending it to overtime. Listen, you're the Chiefs. You're 1-7. What do you have to play for, really, except pride? Suck it up and get two yards for the win! I wish more teams completely out of the playoff picture would grow some stones and play like this. Unlike the Jim Haslett, who should hang his head in shame for kicking a field goal while trailing 40-0, Edwards can at least stand up and say, "We went for the win, damn it, and I'll do it again." I think teams like the Chiefs, who are now 1-8 and going nowhere, should cut their punter and simply go for every fourth down. Seriously, who cares anymore? As for the Chargers - if there's any doubt that they're not a serious contender, almost losing at home to the Chiefs should put that to rest. Man, that was ugly.
Turnovers: Chargers 2, Chiefs 0. Turnovers = loss? By the slimmest of margins, no. 6-4.

Arizona 29, San Francisco 24. Well, this was a wild game. I didn't watch all of it, but I did get to watch the ending, which was fun. The Cardinals still can't run the ball very well, and their defense makes way too many mistakes and commits way too many penalties (one negated an interception return for a touchdown), but their offense is so much fun to watch when Kurt Warner is able to fling the ball around. If you missed the end of the game, it was strange - Shaun Hill threw a bad interception that led to the game-winning touchdown, then threw another one that snuffed a drive deep in Arizona territory, and then San Francisco reached the Arizona 2-yard line with 20 seconds left. Frank Gore was barely touched but still went down, and then San Francisco ran it on the last play of the game, and I think if they had been able to set up a bit more it might have worked. But Arizona escaped, and they're dangerous. They're still not going far if they keep hitting runners after they're down and jumping offsides all the time.
Turnovers: 49ers 3, Cardinals 0. Turnovers = loss? Very much so. 7-4.

And yes, teams that turn the ball over less than their opponents are now ... 89-27. Don't turn the ball over!

Tennessee: 9 turnovers, +10 margin, 9-0 record.
Kansas City: 11 turnovers, +9 margin, 1-8 record.
Miami: 7 turnovers, +8 margin, 5-4 record.
Green Bay: 10 turnovers, +7 margin, 4-5 record.
New York Giants: 9 turnovers, +6 margin, 8-1 record.
Philadelphia: 11 turnovers, +6 margin, 5-4 record.
Chicago: 14 turnovers, +6 margin, 5-4 record.
Indianapolis: 10 turnovers, +5 margin, 5-4 record.
Atlanta: 9 turnovers, +4 margin, 6-3 record.
Arizona: 14 turnovers, +4 margin, 6-3 record.
Cleveland: 10 turnovers, +4 margin, 3-6 record.
New England: 12 turnovers, +2 margin, 6-3 record.
Baltimore: 14 turnovers, +2 margin, 6-3 record.
Jacksonville: 10 turnovers, +2 margin, 4-5 record.
Oakland: 14 turnovers, +2 margin, 2-7 record.
Washington: 8 turnovers, +1 margin, 6-3 record.
New York Jets: 17 turnovers, +1 margin, 6-3 record.
Carolina: 14 turnovers, +0 margin, 7-2 record.
Tampa: 16 turnovers, +0 margin, 6-3 record.
Pittsburgh: 13 turnovers, -2 margin, 6-3 record.
Seattle: 11 turnovers, -2 margin, 2-7 record.
San Diego: 13 turnovers, -3 margin, 4-5 record.
St. Louis: 15 turnovers, -4 margin, 2-7 record.
Detroit: 13 turnovers, -4 margin, 0-9 record.
Buffalo: 18 turnovers, -5 margin, 5-4 record.
New Orleans: 16 tutnovers, -5 margin, 4-5 record.
Cincinnati: 18 turnovers, -5 margin, 1-8 record.
Dallas: 17 turnovers, -6 margin, 5-4 record.
Minnesota: 19 turnovers, -6 margin, 5-4 record.
Denver: 20 turnovers, -11 margin, 5-4 record.
Houston: 21 turnovers, -12 margin, 3-6 record.
San Francisco: 23 turnovers, -13 margin, 2-7 record.

Maybe next weekend will be better. Penn State plays Indiana at home, so they better win by at least 5 touchdowns, and the Eagles play on the road at Cincinnati, a game they should dominate, but who the hell knows anymore? We'll see.

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Wrong on so many levels

Go here and watch the (relatively safe for work) video of a German teacher (though teaching in Hungary) ... stripping in front of her students. So very, very wrong. What in the hell is wrong with some people?

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There's an election in New Zealand!

And the Maoris hold the key! The Maori party holds only four seats in Parliament, but they weren't aligned as of the election, so they could tip the balance!!!! Oh, if only I could send you somewhere where you could get up-to-the-minute New Zealand election coverage!!!!

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More election fallout

Let the teeth-gnashing begin!

Hey, remember back in 2004, when conservative pundits claimed that Bush had a "mandate" to do whatever the hell he wanted because he won 51% of the vote and beat John "I Was a Teenaged Wooden Statue" Kerry by 3.5 million votes? Well, professional douchebag Robert Novak is claiming that Obama's victory on Tuesday was "no mandate." Because winning by 7.5 million votes and getting, what, 53% of the vote is somehow less impressive than Bush's win. As Think Progress points out, Novak specifically said that Bush's margin gave him a mandate. Good stuff, Bob. Shut the hell up, okay?

I hope Obama doesn't consider this election a "mandate." I cringed when I heard Bush use that, because it ignored the half of the country who didn't vote for him. Almost half of the country didn't vote for Obama, either, so I hope he's more intelligent than 43 and realizes that if he treats this election as carte blanche, he's in trouble. You know what a mandate is? Reagan in 1984. When a president wins 49 states, that's a mandate. Obama should remember that, just like Bush should have remembered that four years ago.

Meanwhile, remember all those conservatives who told liberals to "get over it" four years ago when the crazy left-wingers were whining about Bush winning? I'm fairly certain it won't surprise you to know that those crazy right-wingers who wanted to move on are now, well, freaking out. This post is just an example of some of the craziness out there (and that entire blog is, frankly, frightening, just like a lot of crazy left-wing blogs were frightening after Bush won). The best thing in that post: that Obama will implement sharia teaching in the schools. Won't someone think of the children???? The same people who said that we should all unite behind Bush in '04 when he won legitimately and in '00 when he won illegitimately are now claiming that Obama will never be their president. Listen, if Bush didn't destroy this country, I doubt if Obama will.

Finally, on the radio today, a conservative talk show host played a clip from a Swedish documentary in which a teacher in North Carolina humiliated a girl who was voting for McCain in the school's mock election. Fine. That's despicable. I agree. But this dude went nuts, claiming that this sort of thing happens all over the place (with no empirical evidence, mind you). Well, using my own evidence, at the school where once I taught, we hired a science teacher who refused to teach the theory of evolution. Chew on that for a while. And did this guy get all bent out of shape when a 7th-grade teacher used the word "nigger" to describe Obama? If he did, okay. But don't single out one stupid teacher and claim that we're now going to "indoctrinate" our children. School is indoctrination. Parenting is indoctrination. Church is indoctrination. Everything is indoctrination. Deal with it.

We're off to a rousing start to the presidency, aren't we? Conservative talk radio should be a barrel of laughs for the next 4-8 years! (And by "barrel of laughs," I mean "cause for apoplexy while I'm driving," so I might have to keep the dial tuned to sports talk!)

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Post-Election Day thoughts

I don't know if Barack Obama will be a good president. Those who rail about his lack of experience ignore that this job is unique, and some people rise to the occasion and others don't. Theodore Roosevelt didn't have a lot of experience. Abraham Lincoln didn't have a lot of experience. Woodrow Wilson didn't have a lot of experience. Barack Obama might just have what is necessary to be a great president. Or he might not. We don't really know based on his previous political experience. I hope he'll be a great president, but pundits have no idea what kind of leader he'll be.

I mentioned this in the comments of a previous post, but I was disappointed by FOX News. They were deflated and a bit saddened by the results, but nobody went nuclear (or nucular, as our outgoing president might say) and ranted about how the country wouldn't exist in a year or two because of the president. Charles Krauthammer, whose columns are well written but often reflect the grumpiness of an old man, made a key point. Obama has a wide base of support, from moderately conservative independents to even hard core Republicans who are sickened by what Bush has done to their party. Because he has such a wide base, he can't implement a crazy left-wing agenda that (presumably) Congress will try to push now that they've gained seats. If he falls in line with Congress, he'll lose the support of a lot of people who want him to be something different than a traditional Democrat. I would love that, because I don't want government to be easy. I want it to be a struggle to get things passed, because that means they really have to think about it and make the legislation better. That's why I wouldn't really have minded if McCain won, even though I think McCain of 2008 is far less interesting as a candidate than McCain of 2000. McCain might have stopped the Democrats in Congress and forced them to write better bills. But maybe Obama will understand that he can't go completely ultra-liberal because he won't get re-elected. We'll see.

Here in Arizona, Sheriff Joe Arpaio got re-elected because all Arizonans care about is punishing people who cross the border illegally to work. Arizonans don't care about Arpaio raiding businesses and holding legal residents against their will without charging them with anything (which he's done more than once) on the off chance there might be illegal immigrants working there. Arizonans don't care about punishing employers who hire illegal immigrants, even though we passed a law against it two years ago. Andrew Thomas, the county attorney (who works closely with Arpaio and also won re-election), has prosecuted either no employers or one (I haven't checked, but Mia's PT thinks it's one, while I read last week that it was none). Arpaio doesn't seem concerned about shutting down these businesses when he actually does catch an illegal immigrant, even though they're breaking the law. Arizonans love Arpaio because he talks tough. Illegal immigration is a very tough thing to deal with, but most people want it to be simple. Arpaio doesn't do anything to solve it, but he makes it look simple. So he won. Again.

Arizona also passed Proposition 102, the amendment to the constitution that defines marriage as a union between a man and a woman. This depresses me, but doesn't surprise me. Mia's PT and I argued about this on Tuesday, because he's a conservative guy and voted for the proposition. He doesn't have anything against gay people forming domestic partnerships, but doesn't like applying the term "marriage" to it. This gets back to what a "marriage" is. To him, it's a traditional definition, and that tradition should be honored. I didn't get into the idea of marriage as a union between a man and a woman who love each other is a very modern phenomenon, but that's a point. He said that if you ask elementary students what a family is, they'll say a man, a woman, and children. I pointed out that in today's society, half of them will say mommy and a boyfriend or mommy for four days a week and daddy for three, but his point was that they'll say a man and a woman. But that's biology. The idea of "traditional families" is meaningless, because for centuries, illegitimate children were common among the upper class, as marriages were not love matches and the man went off and got a mistress. The wife was, if not happy with this arrangement, resigned to it. I honestly don't get the objections to two men or two women wanting the same recognition as partners that married people get. If you want to start talking about saving the children, that's a different thing. If you want to stop gay people from adopting, that's a whole different argument. It's still stupid, but it's a different argument.

The only thing it comes down to is that people, mostly men, think gay men having sex is disgusting and they don't want to think about it. That's a poor reason to enact laws. But that's what we do in America!

I am curious to live in the Obama United States. I don't think Obama will bring about a huge revolution, because I think he's a fairly typical Democrat. However, the fact that he's neither black nor white will help us get beyond those labels, including calling him "black." If he were light-skinned, would we call him "white" even though his father is black? I love how if you have a drop of "black" blood, you're black, no matter what your skin color looks like. How silly. But I think he will be more successful dealing with the problems the country faces, mostly because he seems, if not smarter than Bush (I think Bush is an idiot, but he could be empirically intelligent), than at least more thoughtful. In this world, you can't go into situations using your "gut." That's the biggest problem I have with Bush. Common sense tells us the sun rotates around the Earth. Your "gut" often gets you in a lot of trouble. Maybe Obama will be a failure. It won't be because he didn't think about things, though.

Is it Inauguration Day yet?

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What have we learned - Week 9

The wife is away, so it was tough finding the time to watch football this weekend. But the kids don't need parental guidance, do they?

Penn State didn't play, but they still got shafted, as usual. I'm not too worried about the Lions falling to #3 in the BCS poll because I doubt if Alabama or Texas Tech will go undefeated, but it's just a measure of how in love with the SEC and Big XII pundits are. Critics cite Penn State's games against Coastal Carolina and Syracuse, but the Orange game was scheduled years ago, when they were decent, and it was on the road, so I don't know if you can pick on it too much. Texas Tech played Eastern Washington (and gave up 24 points), SMU, and UMass. Alabama struggled against Tulane, for crying out loud, and played Western Kentucky and Arkansas State. And if everyone hadn't whiffed on Clemson (come on, Clemson always sucks!), that win would look a lot less impressive. So everyone needs to shut up about the out-of-conference schedule of Penn State. Plus, maybe someone in the Big XII could play some defense once in a while. The Texas-Texas Tech game was wildly entertaining, but that final play was such awful defense by the Longhorns that it was just sad. Florida got some revenge on Georgia, who's looking worse every week, and of course now tons of people are calling the Gators the best team in the country (Florida played Hawaii at home and still has a game against the Citadel, by the way). Other people laud USC for playing at Virginia (which is mediocre) and scheduling Ohio State (at home, of course, although they do play them in Columbus next year). Well, they have to schedule tough opponents, don't they? The Pac-10 certainly doesn't give them any issues - they just beat Washington 56-0! When your conference stinks, you have to play some good teams. Furthermore, I always say this about Big Eleven teams - they have to play in crappy weather late in the year. Penn State should schedule some of these southern teams in late November and see how they do. There was more college football this weekend, but with Penn State having a bye, I skipped a lot of it. Sorry!

Philadelphia 26, Seattle 7. The Seahawks scored on a 90-yard touchdown pass ... on the first play of the game. Then they gained 143 yards the rest of the game. Even after that play, I wasn't too worried, although it took McNabb a while to get in a groove. He was 3-for-13 at the end of the first quarter ... and was 25-for-30 in the final three quarters. Plus, on the road, the Eagles committed only one penalty, and it was a dicey horse-collar tackle with a minute left in the game. Seattle is ravaged by injuries, true, but if the Eagles play defense like they did on Sunday and get a little bit more out of their offense, the second half of the season could be huge for them.
DeSean Jackson update! 2 catches for 20 yards, 1 rush for 3 yards, 5 punt returns for 50 yards. Season totals: 34 catches for 525 yards and 1 touchdown; 7 rushes for 53 yards; 27 punt returns for 298 yards.
Turnovers: Eagles 1, Seahawks 0. Turnovers = loss? No, as the Seahawks did a good job holding onto the ball. They're just not that good. 0-1.

New York Jets 26, Buffalo 17. The Bills have fallen to earth a bit, as they have become a bit too free with the football. I don't know much more about this game, because I wasn't watching it, but the AFC East is looking fun, isn't it?
Turnovers: Bills 3, Jets 1. Turnovers = loss? Well, each team returned an interception for a touchdown, but I'll still say yes. 1-1.

Chicago 27, Detroit 23. The Lions scored all their points in the second quarter. Someone should have told them you play four quarters. The grand Dan Orlovsky Era comes to an end, as he got hurt and the Lions signed Daunte Culpepper. That probably won't work, as the Lions have bigger issues than quarterback, but why Culpepper couldn't get a job before this is strange. Meanwhile, Rex Grossman takes back over at QB for Da Bears. Grossman did take them to the Super Bowl, after all, so we'll see how that works for them.
Turnovers: Lions 3, Da Bears 2. Turnovers = loss? Sure. 2-1.

Cincinnati 21, Jacksonville 19. The Bengals won a game! Holy crap! The Ryan Fitzpatrick Bengals won a game! The QB from Harvard won a game! That's great for the Bengals, but if you're Jacksonville, don't you have to win this game? This is the same team that just lost to Cleveland, mind you. In the NFL, you can't expect crappy teams to be crappy all the time like in college. The Bengals might have been sucking all year, but they still have talent. It's not like USC playing a winless Washington team. The Jaguars play Detroit next week. They better watch out, or they could lose to three really bad teams three weeks in a row.
Turnovers: Bengals 2, Jaguars 1. Turnovers = loss? Interestingly enough, no. 2-2.

Baltimore 37, Cleveland 27. How did the Browns lose this game? I checked it out, they were leading 27-13, and then suddenly it was 27-27. What the heck? Then Terrell Suggs, who had never had an interception return for a touchdown, now has two this season, and the game was over. What a weird thing. I will say that the Browns are totally dysfunctional. They're actually changing quarterbacks because the fans want Brady Quinn. That's not really how you run a franchise, is it? Look Derek Anderson isn't great, but shouldn't they bench the wildly underachieving Braylon Edwards before they bench the QB? Quinn gets to play against the lousy Broncos, but it's on Thursday night, so he doesn't have a lot of time to prepare. The Browns, unfortunately, just bought themselves another season after this, at least, of sucking.
Turnovers: Browns 2, Ravens 0. Turnovers = loss? It looks that way! 3-2.

Tennessee 19, Green Bay 16. I've been hearing a lot about how the Titans can't win the Super Bowl because they don't have much in the passing game. I'm not saying they will win the Super Bowl, but teams can win without a dynamic passing game. Pundits tend to lose focus and get dazzled by teams that fling the ball all over the place and put up points. I'd love to remind these people that defense wins championships and that a powerful running game takes care of a lot of problems. I'm not sure if the Titans can come back if they fall behind, but they don't fall behind a lot because they're so solid in every aspect of the game. Yes, they're boring. But you better get used to them.
Turnovers: Packers 2, Titans 0. Turnovers = loss? Well, you definitely don't want to turn the ball over against the Titans. 4-2.

Tampa 30, Kansas City 27. You're Kansas City. You take a 24-3 lead in the second quarter and even pull a sweet trick play where your quarterback fakes out Ronde Barber, a Pro Bowler, and hauls in a touchdown pass. Then you kick off, and the Buccaneers, who have only had one kickoff returned for a touchdown in their history, return the kickoff for a touchdown. It's 24-10, and the comeback is on! And on the tying touchdown, the KC defender somehow let the receiver get behind him and then stopped and tried to jump for the ball. If he had taken one step further back, he would have gotten the ball. But that's why he plays for the Chiefs!
Turnovers: Buccaneers 4, Chiefs 1. Turnovers = loss? Yes, the Chiefs lost with a +3 turnover margin. Good show, lads! 4-3.

Arizona 34, St. Louis 13. You're St. Louis. You get a lucky touchdown to take an early lead. You have stoned the high-powered Cardinals offense on the first drive. Then you get an interception returned for a touchdown. Then it's 10-7, and a rookie running back puts a superb fake on a defender and goes 30 yards for a touchdown. With less than two minutes left in the half, you're backed up a bit. You throw three incomplete passes and take 15 seconds off the clock and don't force Arizona to take any time outs. When they get the ball back, Kurt Warner throws a poor pass into a defender's hands, but he bobbles it to the receiver, who takes it in for another touchdown. That's why you're the Rams! The Cardinals, by the way, have a 3-game lead in their division. Yikes. Will the world end if the Cardinals make the playoffs?
Turnovers: Rams 3, Cardinals 0. Turnovers = loss? Pretty much. 5-3.

Minnesota 28, Houston 21. I didn't watch any of this, but any game in which the awesomely-named Visanthe Shiancoe scores a touchdown is a good one.
Turnovers: Texans 3, Vikings 1. Turnovers = loss? Houston scored a touchdown on their only turnover, but let's say yes anyway. 6-3.

Miami 26, Denver 17. I didn't watch much of this game, but Denver went in the tank pretty quickly, didn't they? The Dolphins are playing very well, especially on defense. At the end of the game and winning by two points, they went on a 15-play, 8-minute drive that went 80 yards for the clinching touchdown. That's quality stuff!
Turnovers: Broncos 3, Dolphins 1. Turnovers = loss? Looks that way. 7-3.

Atlanta 24, Oakland 0. Whenever I turned this game on and the Raiders had the ball, I had to watch for a few plays. They're just so inept it's astonishing. They didn't get a first down in the first half and ended up with three total. They had -2 yards in the first half. It was really amazing. The Falcons are okay, but they're not this good. Oakland doesn't look like they could beat a Division III college team right now.
Turnovers: Raiders 2, Falcons 1. Turnovers = loss? You know, the Falcons could have turned it over three of four more times and it wouldn't have mattered. 8-3.

New York Giants 35, Dallas 14. Trent Dilfer is raving about the Cowboys when Tony Romo comes back, claiming that his return will alleviate all their issues, including helping the defense. He might be right, but they look awful right now. The Giants simply ran right over them. It was pretty ugly. The Football Giants come to Philadelphia this weekend for a HUGE game. Man, I hope the good Eagles show up.
Turnovers: Cowboys 4, Giants 3. Turnovers = loss? Yes. 9-3.

Indianapolis 18, New England 15. As this was the night game, I had no reason to watch it, but Belichick really screwed the pooch, didn't he? He screwed up a challenge, took a foolish time out, and then had no time outs to challenge something later. Of course, Jabar Gaffney dropped a sure touchdown pass - it was one of the worst miss ever, seriously - and some dude on a 3rd-and-1 leveled a Colt away from the play, drawing an idiotic penalty. Good move, second-string dude! The Cheaters are 5-3, but they look like they don't really know what they're doing.
Turnovers: Cheaters 2, Colts 0. Turnovers = loss? I suppose. 10-3.

Pittsburgh 23, Washington 6. It was probably not in Washington's best interest to knock Ben Roethlisberger out of the game. When a back-up quarterback comes into a game, especially when he's a veteran, he often gives his team a huge lift. Washington may have relaxed a tiny bit, and that's all the Steelers needed. I always get worried when a back-up quarterback comes into a game, unless he's completely awful. I'd rather a quarterback who's struggling stays in the game. Roethlisberger was playing very poorly, and maybe Washington wished he hadn't gotten hurt.
Turnovers: Washington 2, Steelers 1. Turnovers = loss? It sure does look that way. 11-3.

So far this year, teams that turn the ball over less than their opponents are 82-23. That's pretty good!

Tennessee: 8 turnovers, +10 margin, 8-0 record.
Miami: 6 turnovers, +9 margin, 4-4 record.
Kansas City: 11 turnovers, +7 margin, 1-7 record. (That's weird.)
New York Giants: 7 turnovers, +6 margin, 7-1 record.
Philadelphia: 9 turnovers, +6 margin, 5-3 record.
Chicago: 13 turnovers, +6 margin, 5-3 record.
Green Bay: 10 turnovers, +4 margin, 4-4 record.
Cleveland: 9 turnovers, +4 margin, 3-5 record.
Indianapolis: 10 turnovers, +2 margin, 4-4 record.
Carolina: 10 turnovers, +1 margin, 6-2 record.
Pittsburgh: 10 turnovers, +1 margin, 6-2 record.
Washington: 8 turnovers, +1 margin, 6-3 record.
Atlanta: 9 turnovers, +1 margin, 5-3 record.
New England: 11 turnovers, +1 margin, 5-3 record.
Arizona: 14 turnovers, +1 margin, 5-3 record.
Jacksonville: 10 turnovers, +1 margin, 3-5 record.
St. Louis: 10 turnovers, +1 margin, 2-6 record.
Oakland: 11 turnovers, +1 margin, 2-6 record.
Tampa: 16 turnovers, +0 margin, 6-3 record.
San Diego: 11 turnovers, -1 margin, 3-5 record.
Baltimore: 14 turnovers, -2 margin, 5-3 record.
New Orleans: 13 turnovers, -2 margin, 4-4 record.
Minnesota: 16 turnovers, -3 margin, 4-4 record.
Seattle: 11 turnovers, -3 margin, 2-6 record.
Detroit: 12 turnovers, -3 margin, 0-8 record.
Buffalo: 16 turnovers, -4 margin, 5-3 record.
New York Jets: 17 turnovers, -4 margin, 5-3 record.
Cincinnati: 18 turnovers, -5 margin, 1-8 record.
Dallas: 17 turnovers, -6 margin, 5-4 record.
Houston: 17 turnovers, -8 margin, 3-5 record.
San Francisco: 20 turnovers, -10 margin, 2-6 record.
Denver: 19 turnovers, -11 margin, 4-4 record.

I suppose on this Tuesday, we have more to worry about than football (at the time when I'm finishing this, we have elected a black president, which surprises me a bit, but not too much), but still - it's football!

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Hard core dude at the gas station/convenience store

Today I bought petrol. Usually I don't have to go inside, because the pump prints out the receipt, but it must have been out of paper, because it claimed it was printing the receipt but nothing came out. So I had to go inside and get the receipt (it was for the van, which technically belongs to Mia, so I have to keep track of the expenses, otherwise I would have skipped getting the receipt). I rarely have to go inside the convenience store when I get gas, and there's a reason why I'm glad about that!

A dude was at the counter getting rung up for his purchases. He was buying a jug of Coors. No, it wasn't a regular bottle, nor was it a 40-oz. It was kind of in between. I'll stick with "jug." This was at 10.15 in the morning, by the way. He was waiting for the clerk to get him his cigarettes. Cigarettes and beer at 10.15 in the morning! The Breakfast of Champions!

Now, someone might be tempted to joke with this dude for his purchases. As I went to the other register, I glanced over at the dude. He had a pistol strapped to his belt, just hanging out there. I suppose no one would joke around with this guy about his purchase of a jug of beer and ciggies with that gun on his hip.

What he was going to do after buying his beer and cigarettes, I don't want to know. Presumably it involved firing bullets at something while drinking and smoking. That's just the kind of hard core dudes that hang out at the Circle K, man!

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So much politics!

You know, I really should have posted about the Phillies winning the World Series. So here it is: YEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEHAAAAAAAAAAAAA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Okay, that was fun. I'm certainly happy that the Phillies are the 2008 World Series Champions, but I haven't lived in Philadelphia for 15 years, plus I have a life (to some extent), so while I still want the teams I root for to win championships, it's not that big a deal. Let's move on!

Election Day is apparently Tuesday, and things are getting snippy in the presidential race. But there's plenty going on locally, as well!

Here in Arizona, as in other states (California for one), there's a proposition on the ballot to amend the state constitution banning gay marriage. I got this flyer in the mail imploring me to vote for Prop 102. I love how they ring the title with children. Who doesn't love children? If I don't vote for this proposition, my children will turn gay automatically! I bet you didn't know that.

I got a phone call earlier in the week from some dude asking me to vote for this proposition. I was impressed that it wasn't a robot, so I let him talk. When he asked if he had my support, I told him I was bisexual, living with two women and one man. He sounded completely taken aback, as if he hadn't considered someone saying this. I hung up because I didn't want to say anything else, and then thought I should have mentioned I was raising two children in this environment and trying actively to turn them gay. That would have been even awesomer. But I had fun for a time.

I get the idea of religious people wanting marriage to remain a union of a man and a woman. What I don't get is how gay marriage will destroy my marriage or even affect my children all that much (as this is all about protecting the children, as you see by the flyer). I have never read anyone giving a good reason why gay people can't get married. I hear the stupid reasons - the Bible doesn't like it, society will fall apart, gays are weird - but nothing really valid. I mean, will straight people stop marrying because gay people can? Straight people are already not marrying. I guess letting gay people marry continues the horrible moral decline of our wonderful American life. Boy, wouldn't that suck?

I'm a bit disappointed that the web site on the flyer doesn't seem to be viable anymore. That kind of stinks. I'm sure it was pretty neat-o.

Also in Arizona, Paul Newman is running for office. That's fairly impressive, given his current state of living. And the unfortunately named Frank Schmuck is also running for office. Man, that's a bad last name. Poor Frank.

Have fun voting! I'll be dropping off my mail-in ballot on Tuesday and won't have to wait in line. And remember - when I'm dictator, Election Day will be a federal holiday and take place on a Monday. It doesn't need to be on Tuesday anymore, people! (Of course I'll have elections when I'm dictator! They're cute like that.)

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