Map of life expectancy at birth from Global Education Project.

Thursday, July 03, 2014

Brain Dump

For reasons I won't go into I watched a regular network news broadcast last night and one third of the entire broadcast was about (now) hurricane Arthur. This storm is expected to brush the Outer Banks as a minimal hurricane then decay in the cold waters of the North Atlantic while turning out to sea, possibly giving part of New England a rainy day. It would be news, of course, if Cape Hatteras and environs got through a summer without a hurricane. Why is the teevee news so obsessed with ordinary, mildly unpleasant weather? Well, for one thing I suppose they don't have to think or do any work.

As I have occasionally confessed here, I am a long time Red Sox fan. Last year's epic season, culminating in the Championship that Healed The City, has been followed by . . . Feh. The team is so incompetent, so lifeless, you'd think they've been zombified. And that's actually the only explanation I can think of. Other than the defection of center fielder Jacoby Ellsbury to the forces of darkness in New York, it's the same team. They replaced Ellsbury with what was supposed to be the second coming of Willy Mays, Jackie Bradley Jr., who indeed has great speed, a great outfield arm and can, as they say, steal every base but first. He's been struggling with the Mendoza Line* all season, but even so, one less bat shouldn't turn the team from champs to dreck. The fact is nobody is hitting. El Papi tremendo, El Papi enorme, El Papi largo y anchoso, El Papi que ocupe mucho espacio, El Papi de gran vólumen, El Papi de maximo tamaño, i.e. Big Papi David Ortiz can still hit home runs, but otherwise his production is nil. He used to hit timely base hits and doubles to drive in runs, but now he's dinger or bust. The rest of them can't hit anything. So why do the Sox Sux? The moral is that for all we obsess, sports don't mean anything, it's just shit that happens.

And yes, Tim Howard put on an astonishing performance in the World Cup, especially against Belgium, but that just covers up the main truth which is that otherwise, the team sucked a moose. The score should have been Belgium 10, U.S.A. 0.

I bought a tractor with an excavator so I can dig out stumps and otherwise landscape and make beautiful gardens. I expect to find it delivered when I get home today. I'll have fun! Other guys get BMWs and hair transplants to soothe their mortal angst, I got a backhoe.

I'll have a few things to say about health and health care in coming days. I mean it. Stay tuned. 

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