Friday, June 19, 2009

Pre Fathers Day Post

HAPPY FATHER'S DAY IN ADVANCE TO THE FATHERS OUT THERE!!

Check out the new design! Propos to my wife for creating. In the spirit of my World Series of Poker debut on July 6 at 12 noon Las vegas time!! T-minus 17 days! I am getting ood feedback and advice from all corners. Keep them coming.

It has been awhile so let me get to it.

KERNEL NUMBER 1 -- MOVIE ETIQUETTE

So I take my oldest to the local community theatre in Fairfield. Its 4 bucks. For years the talk is it will go out of business. So far, hanging in there five years later for us. Anyway, its like one of the theatres I used to go to when I was a kid. Like the Utopia on the Q44 line not too far from Cunningham Park where I used to spend spring weekend playing Little League. Small, dual theatre with candy that seems ancient. Its quaint and cheap. With old piping in bathroom. We went to see The Soloist which was disappointing despite strong efforts from Downy and Foxx.

In any event, not surprisingly its packed. No previews at the community so its like broadway. Be on time. People wait for good movies to make their way there and save the extra 6 bucks (the fancy theatres are 10 bucks a movie sometimes). Plus the seniors. Anyway, a couple in front of choose to sit right in front of Brett despite seats that would not block his view. Annoying. Bad etiquette. People speaking through the movie. Bad etiquette. People showing up nearly an hor into the movie. bad etiquette. All noticeable transgressions. Brett is all over this.

The next day I take both boys t othe fancy theatre. For The taking of Pelham. Its the first offering of the day. Dawn still battling illness. It costs me 21 bucks. Normally the food and snacks cost more tha nthe movie. But today alas we got there about 8 minutes before the movie and of course the theatre has one poor 17 year old working concessions and the line is massive. No snacks. But 6 previews and ten commericals. Ok. Now the REALLY bad etiquette. We sit in a row where to my right about 6 seats down towards the right aisle is a couple. Woman is literally screaming out loud about some parental problem she is having as if in her kitchen. It is as if she wanted everyone to know her business like the people who share intimate stories on the street on their cells. Anyway, she speaks loudly throughout the previews and it is irritating. Combine that with projector trouble that cut the images in half with a black line during the previews and we are not getting good value here. Now of course despite tons of seats available, a three-person contingent moves right up next to Brett. Now of course people can sit where they want. But people -- all people -- don't like to feel crowded or surrounded unnecessarily. People avoid the middle seat on airplanes if an empty aisle or window is available unimpeded. Same on the metro North or subway. But weirdly at movies sit down next to you for no reason when other seats available. Bad etiquette. My dad once was in a matinee for an action flick like Die Hard or something in a theatre of 6 patrons 2 sat down next to him. Seriously, What could possibly be the logic of that maneuver? Anyway, etiquette aside Pelham was great.

KERNEL 2 -- STEROID ERA

For years I could not get worked up on this issue in baseball or otherwise. I don't know why. I have now read all the major baseball "bios" that touch the subject. Juiced. Vindicated. Both by Canseco who comes across as too many things to recount -- desperate, sad, disingenuous, smug, childish, lost, directionless, pompous, self-involved, narcissitic, and manufactured. The Bonds book. Conte's book. The two Clemens book, the atter American Icon which is an excellent piece of investigative and newspaper style writing, a la Game of Shadows. The Arod book. The football book by Romomanski. Here is my take -- the only word that best captures it -- sordid. The whole thing is sordid. Needles, injections, pills, secret codes, lies, sneakiness, characters, fake trainers, winks and nods, all of it, BALCO, the Phil Astins of the world, the pharmacy bust in Albany. Just flat-out sordid. There is nothing to rationalize here. Athletes were surrounding themsevles with bad apples, were doing something knew was "wrong" to try and gain an edge. To make themselves richer. To make more money. That was their primary purpose (although it seems most accountsd would say that Petite did it to try and fix himself, stupid that it is; but lied and covered and was ashamed etc). At bottom, athletes are praised for tkaing pills or needles or tretaments to heal injuries, play hurt and get o nthe field. Like you and I taking Tylenol to get past bad headache to perservere through a day and do our jobs. But cycling, and stacking and ingesting pills, and self-medicating and sticking needles and abcesses, and butt shots and suggesting vitamin intake, for more muscle and strength and energy and confidence is not the same thing and the line wasnt that blurry. Prohibited technically or not they all knew it wasnt right. Sordid. I could go on for years here. I dont hate these people. I just think people should own up. I think Clemens should go away. And I ithink people who lie to Congress should go to jail because it is a solemn thing and needs to be enforceable for Congree to ever be effective. Sosa. Bonds. Clemens. McGwire. Awful. Of all the books, the Arod book seems the most biased in the tone and the "cheap shotness" of it all.

KERNEL 3 -- VASSAR

Have written a lot on this. But it brought back fond memories. And is a wondefrul institution of which I am proud to have been a part.

KERNEL 4 -- KOBE

I can;t get excited about hi mwinning. Propos to Phil Jackson on 10 titles. Yes he had talent. But so did Red. Red's achievement greater because of the consecutive nature of it but Phil winning in short order on his second go round here, impressive. I like how Lamar Odom seems to have changed his life around and is vastly talented, so good for him and missing link Gasol. Sorry Ewing didn't get his ring.

KERNEL 5 -- SLEEPAWAY CAMP

8 days to go! Kids pumped. We have survived the bar mitzvah madness, mass health madness with flus viruses, dental emergencies. And now the good stuff! The batteries recharge.

KERNEL 6 -- PERSEPCTIVE

Vick 21 months in prison, loses his livelihood, his everything, for vicious and unspeakable cruelty to dogs in a dark subculture of dog fighting. Stallworth gets drunk and kills another human being and gets 30 days in jail. I am not minimizing that the victims' family signed off on it, or that 8 years of probabtion is actually chilling as is the alchol and drug rehab and the 1000 hours of community service. But at bootm rich athlete can pay victims off, and serve 3 weeks in jail for killing another. I am quite sure the guy with the alcohol problem and no money would no be so lucky. Plus when compared with Vick it seems out of whack. Lacking perspective. Outrageous. Ryan Leaf who seemingly has problems of his own and will now continue to be known as bigghest "bust" in football history will do more time. He killed no one. Of course Stallworth didnt mean it, has shown remorse, manned up and took responsibility. It doesn't matter. The average person who has problem does far more time here even if they are wracked with forever guilt. The Judge should have rejected this plea.

Mel Hall former Yankee badboy gets 45 years for sex offense too hideous to detail. Seems spot on to me. Awful. If jury convicted him in 90 minutes have to wonder why they took it to trial and didnt plead out.

The Sports Rap Sheet makes me wonder if athletes are different as a whole then rest of society. In terms of legal brushes. I have always wanted to do a book on this general area. Compare it to the recent spate of white collar crimes last 10 plus years. These educated, intelligent people did not set out to become criminals and the "they are just greedy" explanation is way too simplistic. Good people who did bad things. Or couldn't extricate themselves from bad situations. I was thinking. of a working title. "There are no Shortcuts" or "Wrong Turn" " I Never Turned Back" Anyway it is a working idea. To chronicle falls from grace for so many athlets and compare it against other professions, exectuvies, lawyers, doctors, accountants, etc.

AM I THE ONLY WHO WONDERS

If Secretary of State Clinton should pitch for the mets after she rehabs her broken elbow?

If North Korea gives a hoot about sanctions?

If President Obama needs to shorten his to do list to get things done -- seems streched on major issues?

If the left and the Internet on liners who raised the war chest for him are still loving him, especially on certain itemized social issues?

If Arod on the Yankees is the curse in reverse?

If Billy Joel should avoid the institution of marriage?

If I will ever stay true to exercise diet regimn? Have lost weight on Weight Watchers Nutri System, self discipline, Atkins etc. I always put it on the same way.

If the Hangover will have a sequel?

If the value of a piece of art goes up if a flaw is revealed in the piece, i.e. artist error?

If I win any money in Las vegas if I will resist buying art from Goddard, my favorite artist (Oh My Goddard).

If I will spend a boatload on gambling stuff at the Poker Expo?

If I can get through the summer without someone in my family having a denatal or orthadontic emergency?

If football season can start already?

Happy Father's Day all.

Please comment add thoughts criticize per usal!

2 comments:

Dawn Kornfeld said...

Hi Mark! I hope you like the new look of your blog! -- the other one bored me!

alh1962 said...

From my Ohio perspective I GREATLY look forward to these Kernels!! The comments about athletes are absolutely on tsrget. I loved every sentence regarding the Vassar Reunion. Loved how you recognized the couch as the very one you were sitting on when the Challenger news broke in 1986. And I always appreciate the customer service comments, as they remind me to watch my own habits in that regard. I had no idea you were so well-read...your profile would make it seem you don't like books, but you're up to date on the steroid era! And again I'll state...chocolate with nuts is superfluous. Let chocolate be chocolate!