September 30, 2016

Wild Card Week Wends Its Way To Its Scheduled End: Day 4

Friday was Day 4 of Wild Card Week. The Mets (86-74) and Cardinals (84-76) both won convincingly. The Giants (85-75) came from behind, contrary to their most recent practices, and drubbed the Los Angeles Dodgers 9-3 behind Madison Bumgarner, who won his 15th game of the season and 100th of his career. With two games left in Wild Card Week and the season, the Giants crucially continue to play no worse than the Cardinals.

September 29, 2016

Your Intermittently Posted Daily National League Wild Card Week In Review: Days 2 and 3

The Mets won again on Wednesday, Day 2 of National League Wild Card Week, and the Cardinals and the Giants both lost. The Mets thus gained the inside track for home field in the Wild Card game next Wednesday. The Giants are playing no worse than the Cardinals, which suits their needs.

Thursday was Day 3 of Wild Card Week. The Mets (85-74) had Thursday off, their final three games of the season beginning Friday against the Philadelphias. St. Louis (now 83-76) won its game against Cincinnati, though not without a measure of controversy over the final play of the game, and the Giants (84-75) greeted the return of Johnny Cueto from an injury by scoring multiple times in three separate innings, a rarity for the club which has been shut out nine times since the All Star Break. The Giants continue to play no worse than the Cardinals.

September 27, 2016

Wild Card Week. Day One

The Mets scored 12 runs in their win today, the Cardinals scored 12 runs in their win today, and the Giants scored 12 runs in their win today on this, the first day ofWild Card Week.

Annals of Rhetorical Arts

1. Pro Tip:

A "debate" is not a yelling, pal.

2. Two notable Tweets chirped by witnesses to last night's curious affair of the Donald who sniffed in the night:

a)DEBATE HOUR 2: THE SNIFFENING, said the one Tweet, and

b)Donald Trump's nose is running faster than the jobs leaving this country, said the other.

September 26, 2016

Three Stumble Toward The Line

All the San Francisco Giants need do is play as well as the St. Louis Cardinals for the final six games of the season and a playoff spot is assured. Whether they are up to the challenge is to be seen. Signs in the last couple of months have been less than encouraging, as the Giants piled up (used advisedly) a 25-41 record after reaching the All Star break with the best record in baseball. They fell from an eight game lead in their division to hanging-by-fingernails playoff contenders in a three-way jostle with the New York Mets and the St. Louis club for one of two post-season wild card playoff spots.

In 2014 the Giants advanced to and won the World Series from a wild-card playoff berth, so it can be done, and is, as always, a consummation dtbw.

On the one hand, it is an even-numbered year. On the other, 30 blown saves so far. THIRTY!!!!

September 24, 2016

The Bondi Boodle

Most news sources agree that Donald Trump was required to pay a fine of $2,500 and reimburse his foundation from his own personal funds for the $25,000 his foundation spent, illegally, in support of Pam Bondi's re-election campaign.

Does all this mean that Pam Bondi doesn't have to relinquish the money we know she's been given illegally by the Trump Foundation? She gets to keep all that? That seems like a doable deal for Trump, paying a 10% tax on a $25,000 investment in a pliable Bondi.

So that's what I wonder. Does Pam Bondi keep the cash?

September 23, 2016

Holding Our Nose, The Endorsement Goes To . . .

"…going two weeks without saying something misogynistic, racist or xenophobic is hardly a qualification for the most important job in the world."

Conservative Cincinnati Enquirer [failing to endorse a Republican for president for the first time in nearly 100 years] Endorses Dem: ‘It Has To Be' Clinton Talking Points Memo, September 23, 2016

Surely the Enquirer's standard would disqualify a wide swath of the demos, the people Trump speaks for, often explicitly, from ever succeeding to the presidency, and that's, you know, so elitist, and like, discrimination.

September 13, 2016

Inadvertent Geyser

Junction of Seventh Avenue and Soquel Avenue,  Santa Cruz, September 13, 2016

September 11, 2016

The Stretch Run

The last time the San Francisco Giants were set to begin a three-game series against the San Diego Padres was July 15, coming out of the All Star break. The Giants had the best record in baseball at the time, and had won their previous nine games against the Padres.

It seemed a certain measure of optimism was warranted.

Now, instead of optimism, a fan's residuum of hope remains, with three games now against an inferior team while the division-leading Los Angeles Dodgers visit New York, where the recently resurgent Yankees are still within scuffling distance of a playoff spot.

The Giants at this juncture are three games behind the Dodgers, but still have six games head-to-head against them, with 20 games left on the regular schedule.

What seemed such a certainty scant months ago remains conceivable with best play.

September 10, 2016


Just now Larry King is doing play-by-play of the sixth inning of the Dodgers/Marlins game on radio station WINZ's Marlins broadcast, a guest spot, his presentation full of the utterly long-winded and heartily pronounced banalities that have always been the bedrock of his appeal, but fortunately enough for him, particularly for an avowed Dodger fan such as King, the inning breaks out for the Dodgers with back-to-back homers and they take a 4-0 lead, knocking the pitcher out of the game and giving his partner on the broadcast a chance during the change to draw him out on the looming retirement of Vin Scully, longtime Dodger announcer, for whom King delivers a eulogy-worthy off-the-cuff encomium.

His program on RT has drawn some attention for broadcasting an interview with Donald Trump.

The inning ends, he's gotta leave, plane to catch, big hearty Jimmy Durante fare-thee-well and he's gone.

Dodger pitcher Rich Hill is throwing a perfect game.

Foundation and Empire

In two cases, he has used money from his charity to buy himself a gift. In one of those cases — not previously reported — Trump spent $20,000 of money earmarked for charitable purposes to buy a six-foot-tall painting of himself.

— David Farenthold,

September 08, 2016

Trump On The Stump

During this morning's walk I wondered if my impression of Trump's performance at last night's event (my first extended direct exposure to his campaign style) — that he emitted a consistently rambling, at times incoherent stream of bluster throughout — was shared by an appreciable number of my fellow citizens. You never know about these things. Later in the day Obama, responding to a question about Trump, asked everyone to “just listen to what he says and follow up and ask questions about what appear to be either contradictory or uninformed or outright wacky ideas."

It's comforting that my impression wasn't completely off track: I'm willing to compromise on the President's diagnosis of "wacky," with "dangerously uninformed" as a friendly amendment to an otherwise unobjectionable formula.

September 05, 2016


Before he's too cold in the ground I just want to acknowledge in passing the similarities in the lives and contributions of the recently deceased Rudy Van Gelder and Wallace Stevens, two guys from New Jersey. Stevens was a medical doctor and Van Gelder an optometrist, though each will be remembered more for what they crafted in the hours outside of their ostensible professions, however capable they may have proved to be in carrying out their credentialed duties.

Van Gelder's recordings for Prestige and Blue Note and Savoy forever realized the epitome of sounds New York City's jazz musicians of the '50's and '60's would present to posterity.

September 04, 2016

Weather, That Is To Say, Climate.

Even during peak hurricane season, hurricanes that pass north of the Delmarva Peninsula [that odd huge sprawl of southtending land with Chesapeake Bay on one side and Delaware Bay and the ass end of New Jersey across the water on the other] typically weaken because of cooler ocean waters that limit the growth of central thunderstorms. But not Hermine. This sort of storm arguably wouldn’t be possible without the near-record high ocean temperatures currently offshore.

We Haven’t Seen Many Storms Like Hermine, Eric Holthaus, Sept 3, 2016

But "near-record high ocean temperatures" are the ground floor of the new normal. If Hermine is the sort of storm sustained by the new normal, then she will have many sibs in coming years.