Saturday, March 29, 2014

Bird > Dirk

Mark Cuban once said Dirk Nowitzki was better than Larry Bird. Dirk doesn’t think so, but his three-point shooting percentage is higher than Larry’s. He also has fewer turnovers, even after playing in over 270 more games. Bird grabbed more offensive rebounds and steals, and dished out more assists. Both are excellent free throw shooters.

LB  13    897 34443 .496   649 .376 .509 .886
DN 16 1174 42098 .476 1446 .383 .498 .879

LB  1757 7217 8974 5695 1556   755 2816 21791
DN 1316 8178 9494 3099 1024 1084 2182 26462


Thursday, March 27, 2014


Last night Will was talking to a friend who will be rooming with him this fall. He is from Macon, and they discovered their dads both went to Central High. So Will asked me if I knew his friend’s dad. Turns out we were close friends who have been out of touch since high school. 

Not much going on with me. Catching up a little today. Still plenty to do.

Wednesday night C went to art. Anna went to a movie. I took M to Zaxbys. He watched the last ever episode of Psych. I watched House of Cards and packaged ebay items. I’ve sold 18 items this month.

Slept through the night the past two nights, which is great. Helps when the dog stays downstairs.

Last night SMU won after going up court and taking the last shot after not calling timeout when they had the chance. I always like it when coaches do that. Didn’t Butler do that in the championship game a few years ago against Duke, when the long three pointer to win barely missed?

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Three Fingered Mitts

Today my Amazon baseball glove order was cancelled for the fourth or fifth time. It’s to the point where I’m just ordering so the company will stop offering the glove. Amazon retailers keep offering a left-handed Akadema Dizzy Dean three-fingered mitt. For some reason the retailers offer this item without actually checking to see if it exists. Monday I finally contacted Akadema to see if the left-handed model was ever actually produced. The next day my phone rang – an Akadema employee was calling to answer my question. What service! I knew this particular Dizzy Dean glove is no longer produced, but he thought a lefty version had been made. It’s possible inventory is still sitting in someone’s warehouse. I’m sure the right-hand model is more available than the left-hand model.

Now I have discovered an even cooler three-fingered glove, the 1949 model made by the Shoeless Joe Glove Company of Kansas. Darker, softer leather with a large logo stamped in the pocket, with a pretty red Shoeless Joe patch on the back strap. But once again one website says the left-hand model is available – even though the Shoeless Joe website says right hand only. Here we go again. I asked if the lefty model existed, and received immediate replies via both email and Facebook. Turned out the Shoeless Joe website hadn’t been updated…they do have left-handed models.       

Monday night Ceil cooked chicken in the crockpot and made them into burritos. Tuesday Night she made roast beef tips / stir fry.

At lunch Wednesday we had a quarterly CEO webcast that lasted over an hour and a half. As usual, I had a fiasco in process and shouldn’t have attended. Then my cell phone battery died and I couldn’t check emails. In the future I’ll stay back and watch from my desk. Chickfila box lunches were brought in. The Chickfila cole slaw cup is three times larger than Zaxby’s.

Monday, March 24, 2014

Mercer > Duke?

I like Duke and Coach K, and wanted to see their freshman make a run in the tourney. While it was nice that my hometown team Mercer landed on the map for beating Duke, I knew I’d never hear the end of it from some of my Facebook friends. Most weren’t obnoxious.

Always remember going to the Mercer/Jacksonville game in 1970 at the Macon Coliseum when Artis Gilmore was one of the top players in the country. In high school many of my best friends had parents that taught at Mercer. At Baskin Robbins I used to serve pints of ice cream to Mercer All-American Cindy Brogdon. Several of my SPdL Chapel Choir compatriots went on to Mercer: Rick Statham, Thad Warren, Miriam and Mark Crumpler, Steve and Joe Suggs, Danny Downing, Thad Warren, David Hurt – even Dock Hollingsworth.

Mercer’s regular season uniforms were deemed unacceptable by the NCAA – black number on black jerseys. So the reason the Bears won was because of the new uniforms. After the Bears beat Duke I knew I’d never hear the end of it on FB from Drew, whose son is a trainer for Mercer’s football team. Drew is a constant presence on FB – ten times more than me. He always yawns at my posts on uniforms, so I knew attributing the Duke upset to the uniform change would get Drew’s goat. Didn’t take him long to respond.

After Friday’s games only 18,000 out of over a million who entered remained alive in the billion dollar bracket challenge. After Saturday everyone had been eliminated – there were no perfect brackets remaining.

Haven’t watched the tournament. Saturday I did watch my first Braves game of the year. Uggla’s HR was a high fly that barely cleared the fence near the LF foul pole. It shouldn’t be a surprise that Dayton made the Sweet Sixteen. They looked real good when they played Tech.

Had a work emergency late Friday afternoon. Ceil said supper would be late, so I cashed in a Cheeseburger Bobby’s free burger coupon in Sandy Springs. We were out of pepperoni for the kid’s homemade pizza. Usually Ceil and I have onions and peppers on our pie. Instead she used ground beef. I had a taste and it was better than usual.

Saturday I cleaned upstairs until 2 pm. Ceil brought up scrambled eggs and oatmeal for breakfast and later warmed up pizza for lunch. M and C went with friends to see the hot new movie. I watched House of Cards on Netflix, some of the Braves game, and some of the golf tourney.

Sunday I drove M down to PCC and picked up C. Watched the end of the golf tourney while folding laundry and cleaning the kitchen. Went back to get M. Later I read a good chunk of my book “The Day I Died” written by an NBC Radio reporter who’s covered NASA during the 60’s, 70’s, and 80’s. Great stories about the space program, not so much about when he had a heart attack.

Back in the 70’s my favorite football player was Jim Kiick of the Dolphins. I’m doing to buy the book Dave Anderson wrote about Larry Czonka and him on Amazon.

The SI article on Puig makes a decent point, comparing the youngster to Namath and Ali. Makes me all the more an old fogey for not liking him. For all his considerable talent, all the hot dogging, throwing to the wrong base, and getting thrown out on the bases just turns me off. How much of an impact do these things have on his WAR?

Perhaps in his prime Puig’s overall play lessens the negative impact of his mistakes. With time and injuries his skills could erode, making those mistakes harder to overlook. Mattingly and his teammates are saying all the right things, but you wonder if Puig will eventually be more nuisance than asset. Could be the next Manny Ramirez.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Miles and Miles

Wednesday night C and A had art, and M was off at a friend's house, so I took my time getting home. Left the office at 5:45 and stopped by a Cheeseburger Bobbys near the office. Perhaps if I stop using A1 steak sauce and use ketchup instead the burger will taste better. Still not as good as Fuddruckers, but ok. Passed on the fries, which are good and plentiful. On the way home I found an Iyla Kovalchuk bobblehead for my collection.

About 9:15 I returned a library book and mailed some letters, then drove 38 miles, past Six Flags to Douglasville to pick up Matthew. I'd noticed that 285 traffic was backed up northbound, so on the way back I took 20 east downtown, then 75 north to Delk Road…adding another ten miles to my already long trip. Of course traffic was backed up downtown as well. Got home about 11:15.

Finally got somewhat caught up at work yesterday, but this morning we had a rejection on one part and a shutdown on another. Plus other issues keep coming up.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Generous or Stingy?

For many years I have heard what stingy tippers Christians can be. Many times a large group of Christians will invade a restaurant all at the same time, sit all together at the same table, all order special orders with specific requests (water no lemon, water no ice, try and substitute when the menu says otherwise, change the order after its been given to the kitchen, order extra things later on) – then complain when everything isn't perfect. They grab a waiter or busboy who's not servicing their table and make requests, and get mad when their request isn't fulfilled. They exhibit no compassion for the busy employees. Had they had the big dinner at someone's house would they treat the hostess so rudely? The Golden Rule is completely forgotten.

Then when it comes time to pay they go over the bill item by item. If one little thing went wrong with the meal they won't leave a tip. They figure out what 10 or 15% is down to the penny, then usually round down. Sometimes they demand a free meal. These Christian customers forget that they may be the only Christians these waiters every see. Why would they want to go to church? Most waiters are young and post-modern. They are drawn to people based on how they act, not what they say. They are smart enough to see the difference.

I learned about being a good tipper many years ago from my great longtime boss, Steve. He added that there was no reason at all not to leave a generous tip when paying with a company credit card – especially when so many dinners have hundreds of dollars of alcohol charged to the company. I think I mentioned how recently Matthew had taken his girlfriend out to their first dinner alone. When the check came they had no idea what to tip. The next time we were out to eat I showed him how to figure it, and showed him how the check usually lists suggested tip amounts. I told him to always round up.

Over the years Andy Stanley has preached several great sermons on giving, usually working in specific examples of giving by family members or people he knew. I may be a better tipper than Ceil, but she is a more cheerful giver.

Monday I left work at 6 pm. C and M had a rough day, so we ate at Willys. Anna was down at PCC for her usual Monday event.

Tuesday night I worked til 6:30, then stopped by Kroger on the way home. Ceil was making cobbler for a school event, and needed more ingredients. M and I went to Trader Joes and Kroger. Didn't eat until after 8 pm – a Mexican casserole. Later I changed clothes, helped with the dishes, packaged ebay items, and helped M with history. Finished the Thomas Jefferson book the Art of Power and started a book on the 1975 world champion Boston Red Sox.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Spring Break

Will’s spring break, riding with 3 other guys in a Buick sedan...
Sat: drove to Virginia, camped on the Appalachian Trail.
Sun: Toured University of Virginia and Monticello. Stayed in a nice hotel owned by a relative of one of Will’s friends.
Mon: Hockey game: Pittsburgh Penguins at Washington Capitals. Stayed in Georgetown with an acquaintance.
Tues (& Mon): toured Capitol, Jefferson Memorial, Washington Monument, MLK Memorial, Lincoln Memorial, Smithsonian, etc.  Ate in Chinatown.
Wed: Philadelphia. Toured Freedom Hall, etc. Stayed with the parents of one of the guys.
Thurs: spent night in Fredericksburg VA at our friends the Broadwells.
Fri: return to Athens, drove to East Cobb, visited with MC’s family at Marietta Diner.
Sat: Cartersville
Sun: Passion Church, Shakespeare Tavern, back to Athens

Will and his friends had looked into riding the Megabus on their spring break trip, so I looked into it for fun. The super cheap fares are very rare, and weekday fares are cheaper than weekend fares, even buying in advance. It would be an adventure, but I doubt I’ll be taking a bus trip any time soon. I enjoy driving so much anyway. I keep adding to my bobblehead day list. Rome is giving away FF, and the Reds HOF gives out a different BH for weekend admissions throughout the summer. The Nats have 7 BH days.

Will came home Friday night. Watched a little of the ACC Tourney. Ceil couldn’t decide what to cook. Matthew talked her into PaPa Johns pizza. Later I drove him over to I-75 to meet his girlfriend and her family. They had just picked MC up from the airport. Saturday I cleaned upstairs and drove M out to meet his girlfriend. We always meet at the Birmingham Road Publix, in extreme north Fulton County. After dropping him off I decided to try out the sandwich shop in the shopping center. Wasn’t as quaint as I’d expected. My turkey sub was just ok.

Saturday night we ate Costco rotisserie chicken. Later I drove out to pick up Matthew. Sunday I dropped him off at church and picked up Will and MC. Later they went down to the Shakespeare Tavern to see a play. Later I went back to pick up Matthew. I think I’m going to start dropping M off at three, run for an hour, then read for an hour while cooling down, then go to the 5 pm service.

Monday, March 17, 2014

McDermott < Maravich

This week's Sports Illustrated has Creighton's Doug McDermott on the cover. When I first glanced at the cover I recognized immediately that SI had re-created the Larry Bird cover with two cheerleaders, with the title College Basketball's Secret Weapon. Inside is a feature story on McDermott, which included a list of the top ten scorers in college history:

Points Games Player, School
3667 83 Pete Maravich, LSU
3249 106 Freeman Williams, Portland State
3217 131 Lionel Simmons, La Salle
3165 109 Alphonso Ford, Mississippi Valley
3066 110 Harry Kelly, Texas Southern
3058 118 Keydren Clark, Saint Peter's
3011 140 Doug McDermott, Creighton
3008 125 Hersey Hawkins, Bradley
2973 88 Oscar Robertson, Cincinnati
2951 147 Danny Manning, Kansas
2850 (14th) Larry Bird, Indiana State
2599 (33rd) Jimmer Fredette

Reid: Did you just hear where Maravich averaged 44 points a game during his 3 years at LSU. Somebody got the shot shots for all his games and figured out that if there had been a 3 pt line, he would have averaged 55 pts a game. I have often wondered this.

That is really something. You rarely hear about Maravich any more, just like you rarely hear about Wilt Chamberlain or Oscar Robertson. When the guy from Creighton scored his 3000th point they showed how was ahead of him, but did not mention that Maravich scored his points in fewer years. Back then they played fewer games as well.
SI advertised an on line republication of a 12.01.1969 SI story written by Maravich, where he said the best part of his game wasn't shooting. It was his passing, ball-handling, and dribbling, and that was what everyone came to see.

In this same issue SI's Tweet of the Week was authored by Russ Bengston: "Hi, Melo, this is Phil Jackson. You might remember me from my book where I totally called Kobe out on every perceived fault, and…hello?"

Yesterday I was watching an episode of the Brady Bunch. The youngest son had gotten in trouble for having Jesse James as his hero, not realizing all the bad things James had done. Around the dinner table, after the dad prayed, the family discussed who proper heros would be. The first name suggested was Wilt Chamberlain. I thought that was pretty funny.

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Another Adventure

Had another adventure Wednesday night. C and A went to art, and M was upstairs asleep. I walked out the office door at five, but had to go back inside for something. Mailed 2 packages at the post office – one to Canada. Left the PO at 5:45. Bought something at Dollar Tree and browsed the store next to it. Picked up a chicken sandwich from Wendys. Got home at 6:45. Matthew was downstairs ready to go thrifting.

Knowing the Jeep needed gas, so we loaded up in it. Then I decided to take my car and get gas later. At stop one M found a CD and flannel shirt. I bought a nice Cleveland Indians pullover to sell. Passed on a Columbia shirt, Nike pants, Puma shoes, and baseball cards. Stop Two I bought a new Gwinnett Braves cap for two bucks. Might sell it for ten. Third stop I bought a Gap dress shirt for 50 cents. Picked up M some Zaxbys, then got back home before nine. I had lots of stuff to unload from my car, and made two trips.

Thursday morning I took the dumpster to the street then drove to work. Pulled into the parking lot and noticed the Jeep keys were still in my car. Had to drive all the way back home. Stopped by McDonalds on the way back to work.

Monday night Will had box seats at the Washington Capitals / Pittsburgh Penguins game in downtown DC. One of the three guys he’s traveling with on spring break had a dad with corporate tickets. After hanging around Washington they are headed to Philadelphia. Tuesday I worked until six. Ceil cooked burgers.

A few weeks ago I sold a kids Jordan jersey for $25.00. Sunday I posted another kids Jordan jersey, but in worse shape. Last night someone bought it for $30.00. I’ve gotta find more of them to sell. Posted a Charles Barkley Suns jersey that’s already got three bids. Also posted two Grant Hill jerseys and my nice Utah Jazz Andrei Kerilenko jersey.

Friday, March 14, 2014

Santana > Hudson

Some said that for the $14 million the Braves spent on Santana, the Braves could’ve re-signed Hudson. Signing 31 year old Santana was a much better move than re-signing a 38 year old pitcher coming off a major ankle injury. Nobody is going to have good numbers when they play for the Kansas City Royals. Had to be a letdown to Santana to be traded from the contending Angels to the bottom dwelling Royals. His won-loss record was below .500 last year, but is over .500 for his career. Santana’s ERA and WAR (Wins Above Replacement) were much better than Hudson’s. Any truly dominant pitcher would’ve cost $25 million a year. These days most veteran starting pitchers are making $10-15 million a year. Santana is above average and seems to have matured as a pitcher.

ES 3.24 32 211  1.142  2.9   31
TH 3.97 21 131 1.188  1.0   38

Considering the Braves will start the season with three starters and a top reliever (Venters) on the DL, signing one of the top free agent pitchers of the off-season is a great move. Before the signing many experts were already saying the Braves had the most productive off-season in all the MLB. Not bad for a team that won 95 games and the division championship last year. I predict a repeat.

By the end of the day Thursday I was starting to get a headache. Should’ve taken a pill but waiting until 8:30. Left work at 6:30 and drank a diet Mountain Dew for the caffeine. Crashed in the bed until dinner at 8:30 (fish tacos – I had beef tacos). Ceil was watching Project Runway, so I went back to bed. Didn’t even feel like reading. Woke up early this morning  and packaged and mailed an eBay purchase. Stopped by McDonalds again and made it to work earlier than usual.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014


I like tomatoes, both cooked and raw. It's the hot sauce that I don't like. Back in 2008 my tirant boss took me to eat at Firehouse Subs. Firehouse has dozens of hot sauces lined up on their counter, in order from mild to hot. We were sitting near the HOT end. My boss grabbed the bottle at the end, simply labeled FIRE. My boss poured out a bunch of this fire sauce on his sandwich, took one bite, and ran into the bathroom. That was the end of his lunch.

Worked until almost 6:30 Tuesday night, then got stuck in Sandy Springs traffic while taking a different route home. Stopped by one Kroger for toothpaste, then M called and HAD to have Ken's honey mustard salad dressing, so I had to stop by a second Kroger. Got home at eight, changed clothes and ate dinner (blackened boneless chicken and mixed vegetables). By then it was nine. Worked on eBay stuff. Tonight I'll order that Stan Musial three-fingered mitt from Amazon, that doesn't exist.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

End It Movement

The Passion P logo - not exactly sure what it means. Kinda a weird P. The big red X is the symbol for the End It Movement, to end human trafficking / slavery (<>). February 27 was the official End IT Day, and supporters were encouraged to draw a red X on their hands and share a photo on social media. Kyle Koerver played a game with a red X on his hand. Years ago Louie's father designed the Chickfila logo.

Friday night Ceil took M to a church bowling event, and later I picked him up. Saturday morning I cleaned upstairs. Ceil took M to a friend's house in Alpharetta, in the same neighborhood that Chipper and Usher live in. Got a bunch done on eBay Saturday and Sunday. Sold three items and posted several more.

I did watch parts of the VT game. Miller had a big first half. Also almost all of Duke/UNC. Heard them show Cowboys' QB Tony Romo sitting on the sidelines. Cowboys head coach Jason Garrett was sitting right next to Romo, but I didn't hear them say anything about him during the game. Sunday SportsCenter showed a video of Romo shooting three-pointers. A Duke player had his hand in Romo's face. Supposedly Romo never missed. In high school Romo was all state in basketball, and turned down a college scholarship. Romo was at Duke rehabbing from back surgery, working out with Duke head coach David Cutcliff, a noted QB guru.

Sunday I drove M down to the Lindbergh Five Guys. On the way home I drove up Roswell Road and ate at Cheeseburger Bobbys. It was ok, but for the price I could've eaten somewhere nicer (Moxie Burger) or better (Fuddruckers). Fries were good and plentiful. I put steak sauce on the bun, then ate all my fries first, while they were still hot/warm. By the time I got to my burger the steak sauce had soaked in, causing the bun and burger to fall apart in my hands. Later I picked M up in Roswell. Stayed up late with him working on a school project.

A Few Good Men is another movie I have never watched. Seems like a movie I would like, but I have never gotten around to it. Saturday afternoon I watched one of my favorites: Sleepless in Seattle. Ceil even watched some of it. Also watched lots of the Doral golf tourney both Saturday and Sunday.

Will's first stop on his spring break trip was Charlottesville / University of Virginia. Heard they were camping out.

Monday, March 10, 2014

Mt. Yonah

Two photos from Joel & Will's recent camping trip.
The skies proclaim the work of His hands.

Sunday, March 09, 2014

More on Baseball & Bobbleheads

Attending five baseball games in a row would be taxing, even in four different cities. That Rounding Third blog guy took three months to visit 30 ballparks, taking off days and rarely attending a game on the day he traveled. Being on the road so long would drive me crazy, but a game every night would grow old as well.

Only after I saw the close-together dates in Cincy and Nashville with an open Thursday in between did I look at the Louisville schedule. Interesting that Nashville has back-to-back bobblehead nights. The three wise man bobbleheads are sponsored by some religious organization. Asheville is also kinda out of the way from my usual routes. After adding Louisville to the list I could've looked at Indianapolis or other Midwestern cities.

Speaking of Louisville, my college roommate Tom had his dog featured as the pet of the night at the Louisville Cardinals basketball game the other night. Tom attends several Louisville Bats and Cincinnait Reds games each year, and tries to make it to Turner Field every few years. In 2012 I saw him for the first time in almost 20 years. I still kick myself for not tagging along on his road trip to Yankee Stadium and Fenway Park back when we were single.

Will says he'll get the UGA bobblehead on April 10 while I go to Turner Field. Thursdays are busy days for Will, so we'll see if he makes it. I enjoyed going to games out at Gwinnett last year. Liked it better than Rome.  

For Christmas my family gave me an Apple TV unit so we could watch NetFlix on both TV's. I've hardly messed with it, but now that spring training has started I'll be making use of the MLB App. Supposedly I can watch just about any televised game. This weekend I got to listen to some of the Braves games on radio. This week 680's Chuck and Chernoff are down at ST, but they still spent most of their time talking about football. Interesting to listen to Chernoff talk about his left-handed 7 year old's little league practice.

Remember my friend George, the tall ex-Sprayberry CFA manager who loves baseball? His 9th grade daughter made the Kell JV baseball team. She's closed two games without allowing a run – both two inning appearances. The competition will probably get tougher, but so far George is thrilled, as he should be.

Saturday, March 08, 2014

2014 Bobblehead Schedule

Each spring I love to see what bobbleheads will be given away during the baseball season. I plan on going to all six bobblehead games at Turner Field and three or four at Gwinnett, but it looks doubtful I’ll make it to any other team’s giveaway day. I always check the Cincinnati Reds and Tampa Bay Rays schedule, to temp me to take a road trip. August 6-7-8-9 looks tempting - a Cincy/Nashville/Asheville swing – three bobbleheads in four days, though that would be an expensive trip.

March 1 (Sat) UGA GymDogs Courtney Kupets BH
March 1 (Sat) Brewers Carlos Gomez BH
March 3 (Mon) Brewers Hank Aaron BH
March 6 (Thu) Brewers Ben Oglivie BH
March 10 (Mon) Brewers George Boomer Scott BH
March 15 (Sat) Brewers Polish Sausage BH
March 17 (Mon) Brewers Gorman Thomas BH
March 22 (Sat) Brewers Harvey Kuenn BH
March 27 (Thu) Brewers Ryan Braun BH

April 1 (Tue) Angels Mike Trout BH
April 5 (Sat) Rays Wil Myers ROY BH
April 7 (Mon) Red Sox David Ortiz BH
April 9 (Wed) Giants Hunter Pence BH
April 10 (Thu) Braves Hank Aaron BH (got)
April 10 (Thu) UGA Gordon Beckham BH (got)
April 11 (Fri) Cardinals Michael Wacha NLCS MVP BH
April 18 (Fri) Cubs Joe Tinker BH
April 24 (Thur) Dodgers Clayton Kershaw Cy Young BH
April 25 (Fri) Giants Duane Kuiper BH
April 26 (Sat) Tennessee Smokies Javier Baez BH
April 27 (Sun) Brewers Carlos Gomex BH
April 27 (Sun) Nationals Jordan Zimmerman BH
April 30 (Wed) Red Sox Dustin Pedrola BH

May weekends: Reds HOF Sparky Anderson BH
May 2 (Fri) Cubs Red Grange BH
May 2 (Fri) Angels Josh Hamilton BH
May 10 (Sat) Reds Homer Bailey dual no hitter BH
May 10 (Sat) Charleston Tony the Peanut Man BH
May 11 (Sun) Brewers Kyle Lohse BH
May 13 (Tue) Dodgers Yasiel Puig BH
May 16 (Fri) Cubs Babe Ruth Called Shot BH
May 16 (Fri) Nationals Wilson Ramos BH
May 22 (Thu) Braves Andrelton Simmons BH
May 24 (Sat) White Sox Chris Sale BH
May 27 (Tue) Dodgers Hyun-Jin Ryu BH

June weekends: Reds HOF Jim O'Toole BH
June 4 (Wed) Reds Aroldis Chapman BH
June 6 (Fri) Cubs All-American Girls BH
June 7 (Sat) Gwinnett Braves Mike Minor BH
June 7 (Sat) Orioles Manny Machado BH
June 10 (Tue) Phillies Chase Utley BH figurine 
June 14 (Sat) Asheville Tourists Mr. Moon BH
June 14 (Sat) Dodgers Tommy LaSorda BH
June 14 (Sat) Louisville Bats Homer Bailey BH
June 15 (Sun) Cardinals Jack Buck BH w/ voice chip
June 15 (Sun) Brewers Vintage BH
June 17 (Tue) Braves Greg Maddux BH
June 19 (Thur) Yankees Mark Teixeira BH
June 20 (Fri) Cubs Ernie Banks BH
June 21 (Sat) Reds Ken Griffey Jr 500th home run BH
June 26 (Thur) Dodgers Brian Wilson BH
June 27 (Fri) Birmingham Barons Julio Vinas BH
June 28 (Sat) Gwinnett Braves Chopper BobbleBank
June 28 (Sat) Giants Brandon Belt or Brandon Crawford BH
June 29 (Sun) Brewers Scooter Gennatt BH
June 29 (Sun) Nashville Sounds first wise man BH
June 30 (Mon) Nationals Bryce Harper BH

July weekends: Reds HOF Eric Davis BH
July 2 (Wed) Yankees Lou Gehrig BH
July 2 (Wed) Louisville Bats Jay Bruce BH
July 5 (Sat) Gwinnett Braves Julio Teheran BH
July 5 (Sat) Charleston RiverDogs Ghostbusters BH
July 6 (Sun) Cardinals Jim Edmonds BH
July 11 (Fri) Cubs Gale Sayers BH
July 11 (Fri) Nashville Sounds second wise man BH
July 12 (Sat) Dodgers Pee Wee Reese/Roy Campanella BH
July 12 (Sat) Reds Billy Hamilton bobble-legs
July 13 (Sun) Giants Angel Pagan BH
July 19 (Sat) Gwinnett Braves Ron Gant BH
July 19 (Sat) Charleston RiverDogs Bill Veeck BH
July 20 (Sun) Nationals Denard Span BH
July 25 (Fri) Cubs Jack Brickhouse BH
July 25 (Fri) Rome Braves Freddie Freeman BH
July 27 (Sun) Yankees Paul O'Neill BH
July 27 (Sun) Brewers Jim Henderson BH
July 31 (Thur) Dodgers Original 30 HR BH (Baker/Cey/Garvey/Smith)

Aug weekends: Reds HOF Barry Larkin BH
Aug 2 (Sat) Louisville Bats Joey Votto BH
Aug 6 (Wed) Reds Jay Bruce BH
Aug 8 (Fri) Cubs First Night Game BH
Aug 8 (Fri) Phillies Roy Halladay BH figurine
Aug 8 (Fri) Nashville Sounds vintage uniform BH
Aug 9 (Sat) Nashville Sounds third wise man BH
Aug 9 (Sat) Asheville Tourists Russell Wilson BH
Aug 13 (Wed) Braves Evan Gattis BH
Aug 15 (Fri) Cardinals Chris Carpenter retirement BH
Aug 17 (Sun) Rays Mr. Happy BH
Aug 17 (Sun) Nationals racing president Bill Taft BH
Aug 19 (Tue) Phillies Ryan Howard BH
Aug 19 (Tue) Charlotte Knights Jordan Danks BH
Aug 20 (Wed) Dodgers Zack Greinke BH
Aug 20 (Wed) Yankees Joe Girardi BH
Aug 21 (Thu) Nationals Ian Desmond BH
Aug 22 (Fri) Cubs Kerry Wood 20 Strikeout BH
Aug 24 (Sun) Brewers Jean Segura BH
Aug 24 (Sun) Yankees Hello Kitty BH
Aug 30 (Sat) White Sox Tony LaRussa BH
Aug 30 (Sat) Louisville Bats Johnny Cueto BH

Sept weekends: Reds HOF TBD BH
Sept 1 (Mon) Braves Bobby Cox BH
Sept 1 (Mon) Orioles Adam Jones BH
Sept 2 (Tue) Dodgers Magic Johnson BH
Sept 5 (Fri) Cubs Greg Maddux 3000th Strikeout BH
Sept 6 (Sat) Rays Evan Longoria 80’s hair band BH
Sept 7 (Sun) Dodgers A.J. Ellis BH
Sept 9 (Tue) Red Sox Pedro Martinez BH
Sept 9 (Tue) Yankees Lucy BH 
Sept 9 (Tue) Dodgers Babe Ruth BH
Sept 13 (Sat) Brewers Hank the Ballpark Pup BobbleHank
Sept 14 (Sun) Brewers Robin Yount BH
Sept 17 (Wed) Braves Tom Glavine BH
Sept 20 (Sat) Cardinals Jose Oquendo BH
Sept 21 (Sun) Orioles Fan's Choice BH
Sept 27 (Sat) Nationals Tyler Clippard BH

Did I miss any? Let me know!

I may have to make a work trip to Raleigh soon. If I wait til April there are several minor league teams in the area, but none are giving away bobbleheads. Duck Dynasty’s Mountain Man is making an appearance at three parks, including Gwinnett.

Augusta GreenJackets – no bobbleheads
Carolina Mudcats – no bobbleheads
Charleston RiverDogs - TBD
Chattanooga Lookouts - no bobbleheads
Columbia SC Blowfish – college summer league
Durham Bulls – no bobbleheads
Fayetteville NC SwampDogs – college summer league
Florence SC RedWolves – college summer league
Greensboro Grasshoppers – no bobbleheads
Greenville Drive - TBD
Huntsville Stars – no bobbleheads
Mrytle Beach Pelicans – no bobbleheads
Wilmington Sharks – college summer league
Winston Salem Dash – no bobbleheads

Sunday I scored an elusive prize – a San Diego Chicken bobblehead. Mascot bobbleheads are cute but creepy. So far I have collected eight: the Pittsburgh Pirate, Pittsburgh Penguin, Philadelphia Phil and Phyllis, the Washington Nationals racing president Thomas Jefferson, Milwaukee Brewers Italian Racing Sausage, the Boise State Bronco, and Chubby the Charlotte Checker (looks like our dog). Last week I also picked up the Bronco, a UPS driver, and ARod as a Texas Ranger. Time to slow down, considering I could get ten or eleven more this summer.

Friday, March 07, 2014

Freaky Friday

Crazy start to this morning. Was ahead of schedule, then got a call from work. I had forgotten to do something yesterday. Tried to log onto the laptop from home, but the keyboard wasn’t working right. On the way to work I stopped at one post office, but the machine wasn’t taking credit cards. Second post office worked, but traffic was worse around that one. Made it to work by 7:30 and forgot to give boss my correct hours from yesterday, since my work internet isn’t working well this week. Coworker helped me fix laptop, but then the battery gave out. Then the wireless keyboard battery gave out. Had to go downstairs to get more batteries. I was able to stock up on pens, markers, and a new wireless mouse. Still took a while to get everything running. 9 am and I hadn’t done too much yet.

Then it got worse. Inventory issues. Vendors slow to respond. A payment is made from the wrong bank, overdrawing the account. At lunch (at 1 pm) I have to run out to the bank.

I’m scared to watch Titanic because it is so long. I’ve only seen parts of it – never the whole thing. If I watched it I would probably like it. I like Leonardo Dicaprio. A love story that happens during a famous event – just my kind of movie. I’m talking myself into watching it. Ceil, Anna, Matthew, and Will all like the show “Sherlock.” It takes me a while to try new TV shows, unless I read about them somewhere first. But there are other movies I’ve watched 20 times, like You’ve Got Mail.

Tech needs to play in as many games as possible. Hadn’t heard about Coach K, but I did hear about a player helping an opponent helping a player off the court. Didn’t realize it was Duke/Wake. 

Left work Thursday at five. Last night Ceil watched American Idol and her Thursday night Runway show. Anna was downtown at her Grace House Church last night. Had to drive her friend back to her car in the rain, and didn’t get home until 11:30 or so. Spaghetti and meatballs for dinner, with salad.

Got my San Diego Chicken bobblehead in the mail. Very pleased – its almost larger than life. Sold three items. December and January were great Ebay months, but thing tailed off in February. Found a few more things to sell. Perhaps I can hit it hard this weekend.

Thursday, March 06, 2014

Sour Grapes

Having an American League team is town sure would be fun, but I agree, it won’t happen. Just sour grapes about the Braves moving. The city already said they don’t have the money to make needed repairs on Turner. The city has enough opponents trying to block the new Falcons dome. If an AL team did come, the Yankees and Red Sox games would be well attended. A new team would have the same attendance issues the Braves have – not so much the winning and losing, but busy families don’t go to games in April, May, August, and September because school is in session and kids have after school activities. Downtown traffic is bad, MARTA doesn’t run trains to the stadium, and for a young family tickets/parking/food are expensive to go multiple times. During June and July attendance increases. Playoff games often start at 4 pm or 6 pm on weekdays. Even so, the Braves sold out the past few times they made the playoffs.

I used to park across I-20 near the Capitol, then walk past the Archives building to the stadium. Now I park on the west side of 75/85 at the IBEW building. It’s a decent little walk. Back when we lived in Morningside Ceil and I once drove to a doubleheader. She went home after the first game. After the second game (Steve Avery’s first MLB start) my friend and I RAN home…straight down Piedmont.

Never been inside the Gwinnett Arena, but that’s where the SEC women’s tournament is. Great Sports Illustrated article about Jabari Parker. Seems like a good kid.

MARCH 5: Left work at 5:45 Wednesday afternoon. So much to do. Went straight home. Ceil had fixed black beans and rice before leaving for art. M and A had stayed up late Tuesday night studying, so both took long naps after school. I worked on the computer, watched Modern Family, and popped two batches of corn for Matthew (and one for me). Barney loved it, because while the corn is popping out I toss him popcorn for him to catch in his mouth. Since he cut his haircut last Friday he can see better, so he was catching them all out of the air.

At nine M wanted to watch Psych, so I went upstairs to read. Having stayed up until almost midnight the past two nights, I was tempted to go to sleep. I made it to ten before nodding off. Slept through the entire night. Didn’t even wake up when Ceil and Barney came to bed.

MARCH 3: Found a great sale on Greek yogurt at Kroger. Bought 15 little containers of several name brands: Dannon, Aptiva, etc. Plus two boxes with eight yogurt tubes in each. Saved $15.60. Good flavors: blueberry, vanilla, key lime, strawberry. Went home and cleaned out the fridge to make room, and found two yogurts no one was eating. Later I popped a bowl of popcorn. For supper Ceil made chicken soup, rice, corn on the cob, and tossed salad. After eating on the Costco rotisserie chicken Saturday night, Ceil used the rest for the soup and a batch of chicken salad. If she starts buying the lower cost Costco meat, that will be good.

Picked up four books on CD at the library, including Thomas Jefferson: The Art of Power. Gassed up the Jeep. Again. It’s not getting 16 MPG around town. Still it’s so nice to have a third vehicle. Last night Anna drove the CRV down to her meeting at PCC. She wants to run in a Color Run race down at the Atlanta Motor Speedway where they spray paint all over you.

Wednesday, March 05, 2014

The Giamatti Baseball

Stopped by a thrift store on the way home yesterday. I usually swing by the sporting goods section and check out the golf clubs, golf bags, weights, and baseball gloves. Normally I don’t look closely at baseballs, but for some reason I picked up a ball that was partially buried under other stuff. It was an official National League baseball from 1986-1988 – stamped with the signature of then NL president / future commissioner Bartlett Giamatti, in decent shape. A steal at 77 cents. I was so excited that I forgot to ask for the senior discount. That photo wasn’t the actual ball, but one I found on eBay selling for $28.00.  
Many dislike him, but Giamatti’s love of the game was one of the things that got me back super interested in baseball in the late 80’s.

You need to register now for the Quicken Loans / Yahoo bracket challenge. A perfect bracket wins one billion dollars. Others win $100,000.00. But only 15 million can enter, so register now.

Worked til 6:15 Tuesday night. Did some extra talking about inventory issues with my new boss, who seems ok. Yesterday New Boss was wearing a Patagonia jacket and my favorite kind of pants: lightweight North Face hiking pants that convert into shorts. But it would’ve been weird for me to have said “Hey – nice pants!”  

Tech beats Syracuse: Didn’t I just say last week that it had been a while since Tech had pulled an upset like this? Last year they upset Miami. Syracuse is really in a funk, or maybe they aren’t as good as everyone thought. I do love their throwback uniforms.

Some people may get the wrong perception about Miller because he doesn’t look like a fierce killer. Instead he gets labeled a gentle giant. Didn’t Coach K praise Miller before the recent Duke game? Recently Sports Illustrated profiled two tall brothers playing center for New Mexico State: Sim and Tanveer Bhullar. Their parents moved to Toronto from India. Sim is a 7’5” 310 lb sophomore (size 22 shoe) who averaged 10.1 points, 6.7 RB, 2.4 blocks as the conference freshman of the year. His 85 blocks set the conference record. Tanveer is a 7’3” 290 lb redshirt freshman.

One in 50,000 American men 6’2” – 6’4” aged 20-40 are NBA basketball players. Only one in six American men at least 7 feet tall aged 20-40 are NBA basketball players.

Just thought of something. Since I stopped buying and drinking diet soft drinks and started drinking more water and low calorie kool aid I have gained more weight. I think the real reason I’ve gained weight is that I am exercising less. Guess that means I can’t go back to drinking lots of diet coke.

Birthday Clubs: I read all this when it came out. Fun to do if you have the time. Half the list is places I had never heard of. Most come with qualifiers. It’s free for you, but unless you eat alone you pay a bunch for whoever is eating with you. I’m a member of a few birthday clubs. At Moes you get a free menu item. Baskin Robbins free ice cream cone. The free birthday Fuddruckers burger is good. Burgers at Ruby Tuesday and Red Robin. Used to get a free Firehouse Sub sandwich.

Tuesday, March 04, 2014

Hanging out with Switchfoot

MARCH 2: Sunday I drove M down to Passion. Anna got the Jeep cleaned and went to the evening Grace service. I ironed four shirts and did several loads of laundry while watching the red carpet show. Ran to Kroger for grits, then drove down to Buckhead to pick up Matthew. He had gone to the Switchfoot concert at the Roxy. I parked behind the theater next to the band’s bus. The concert didn’t get over until 10:30. After M came out we waited around to talk to the band, with about 55 others (I counted!). As usual, they all came out one by one and went out of their way to speak to everyone there. I got pictures of M with all five band members. Didn’t get home until 12:30.

MARCH 1: Saturday morning I cleaned upstairs, then drove to Alpharetta/Milton/Birmingham to pick up M’s girlfriend. They went to see Walter Mitty. I watched a documentary of killer whales in captivity. Ceil picked up a free rotisserie chicken at Costco for dinner.

FEB 28: I actually ate light this weekend, except Ceil cooked homemade pizza Friday night. I even exercised both Saturday and Sunday. Sore today. Supposed to have a softball game tonight, if it isn’t cancelled. Worked until 6 pm Friday afternoon then made a couple of stops on the way home. Bought a pair of slacks and a Matt Ryan jersey.

FEB 27: Worked all morning on the customer’s emergency. Was going to have to motor freight tube from Illinios or Pennslyvania for overnight delivery. Tried 3 possible fabricators, but no one could cut it. Someone recommended a shop in Chamblee, but no one answered the phone or called me back. Finally I hopped in the car and drove down PIB inside the perimeter. It was lunchtime, but the place looked vacant. Called the customer to say I’d run out of ideas, but they had found another source. Stopped at Wendys on the way back.  

FEB 26: C and A were going to art class after a busy afternoon. I left work at 6:45 and picked up Burger King. Told M to cook a frozen pizza. Got home to find C had cooked chicken and rice. Also ravioli. So worn out when I got home that I didn’t do much – just read on the internet. M was watching Duck Dynasty, Modern Family, and Psych. Crazy busy at work. Got in over 55 hours last week.

FEB 23: Picked up PaPa Johns because I didn’t know C had cooked beans and rice.

UNC players say they like wearing the old Jordan-era unis so much that they would push the coach to wear them again.

These days few people space twice after a period – like we were taught years ago. When I first started typing in Word and emails the computer would reduce my two spaces to one. I finally quit trying to make it two spaces.

Some companies have a Facebook presence and make posts but don’t seem to monitor whats going on. AJC and 11Alive – people blast them and I rarely see a response. I remember seeing that you had posted being at CF the evening you went.

With Venters, Minor, and others getting late starts they won’t wear down as much over the course of the season – and other pitchers will get the opportunity to perform.

Got a new boss at work, someone I hadn’t met. They’re splitting my old boss’s job in half.

Will is going to DC & Philly on spring break in March. Wants to drive my car.

Matthew with Switchfoot

Jon Foreman - lead singer
Tim Foreman - bass guitar
Drew Shirley - lead guitar
Chad Butler - drums
Jerome Fontamillas - keyboards

Monday, March 03, 2014

Crabapple General Store

This weekend I dug an old idea from the back corners of my mind. Originally I daydreamed about opening a store in Seaside Florida selling T-shirts and other sundries. Once successful other stores could be opened in other trendy spots and North Atlanta. My new idea is to open a similar store in the north Fulton County village of Crabapple, to be called the Crabapple General Store.

Like old time general stores, the Crabapple General Store would have hardwood floors, ceiling fans, high ceilings, a front porch, and plenty of old stuff on the walls – black & white photos, etc. We’d sell apples and Cokes iced down in galvanized washtubs. An extensive assortment of coffee and cappuchinos. Also water, gum, and candy bars. Ice cream. Also other vintage items I stumble across at thrift stores: college and pro T-shirts, toys, games, old records, wooden baseball bats, old golf clubs, and bobble head dolls. There could be a checkers table and TV area. I’d have to be careful to make the store as female friendly as possible. We could sell Ceil’s homemade apple pie or her handmade purses.

The store would mainly sell various trendy T-shirts – particularly Crabapple General Store T-shirts in both adult and child sizes. Other tees could support local events and schools, or be Crabapple takeoffs on popular movies, TV shows, and other events (like the local equestrian community). Along with white and grey, the main color would be dark crabapple red. Each tee, regardless of style, would feature a small Crabapple General Store logo on the left sleeve. During winter we’d add long sleeve tees. Perhaps some good old boy Crabapple General Store ball caps. In addition to crabapple red caps and white caps, others could be modeled after various Braves caps: navy with a red bill, royal with a white front, or all navy.

Another T-shirt would look like an old time baseball jersey. The team: the Crabapple Pickers. Each new order of limited-edition Pickers shirts would feature a different player’s name and number – usually a popular / quirky current Braves player like Evan Gattis or Kris Medlen, as well as old-timers like Hank Aaron, Rabbit Maranville, and Bob Uecker mixed in (note complete player list below).

The downtown Crabapple area, just north of the silos near the Birmingham Road intersection, combines shops bordering the street with houses behind them. It would be great to have a building with the store on the first level and living area above. We’d like to move up in that area anyway, though we don’t have a specific subdivision in mind.

Player list: Rabbit Maranville (1), Dale Murphy (3), Jeff Blauser (4), Freddie Freeman (5), Bobby Cox (6), Bob Uecker (8), Andrelton Simmons (19), Warren Spahn (21), Chris Johnson (23), Evan Gattis (24), Greg Maddux (31), Phil Niekro (35), Eddie Mathews (41), Hank Aaron (44), Kris Medlen (54), Peter Moylan (58).

Sunday, March 02, 2014

Favorite Movies

A list of some of my favorite movies. Believe it or not, there are other movies I've watched that didn't make the list. My absolute favorites are asterisked.
The American President *
Angels & Demons
Apollo 13
The Aristocats
The Aviator *
Back to the Future
The Bingo Long Traveling All Star and Motor Kings
Broken Arrow *
Bull Durham
Catch Me if You Can *
Christmas with the Kranks
Clear and Present Danger
Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs
Con Air
Da Vinci Code
Dave *
Eagle Eye *
The Empire Strikes Back
Enchanted *
The Family Man *
Ferris Bueller's Day Off
Field of Dreams *
Finding Nemo
Forrest Gump
Hunt for Red October *
Galaxy Quest
Groundhog Day *
Guarding Tess
Independence Day *
The Incredibles
It Could Happen to You *
The Jerk
Jewel of the Nile
Julie & Julia
Larry Crowne *
Last Vegas
A League of their Own
The Lake House
Leap Year
The Lonely Guy
Must Love Dogs *
My Best Friends Wedding
National Treasure *
National Treasure Book of Secrets
The Natural
Night at the Museum 1 & 2
Nothing in Common
The Parent Trap *
Patriot Games
Point of No Return
The Polar Express
Raising Arizona
Random Hearts
Raiders of the Lost Ark
Rain Man
The Replacements
Return of the Jedi
Romancing the Stone *
The Rookie
Safe Haven
Shawshank Redemption *
Sleepless in Seattle
The Sound of Music
Source Code *
Splash *
Stand by Me
Star Wars
Sunshine Cleaning
The Sure Thing
Tootsie *
Toy Story
Up in the Air
Walk the Line
While You Were Sleeping
You've Got Mail *
2012 *