So, How’s Life?

We’re taking a well deserved break from hardcore baseball this week because it’s the All Star break. But you guys know our little blog is a little more than just baseball.

First of all, here’s a good morning wake up call!

How are you? How’s life in your little corner of the world? Fill us in, if you please.

As for me? Well, as you all know I’m going to move to the East Coast soon. I’ve been looking for a new position out there, but relocating is interesting at best. I did this once before…16 years ago, when the world was a much different place. If you all have any suggestions, I’m very willing to entertain them.

Here’s another song, a bit more mellow but I like it still. Just in case you need something a little less… rock and roll for the morning.

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15 thoughts on “So, How’s Life?

  1. Hectic. I’m 64 and still working, my grandson needs help with college, and I’m coming down with a summer cold.

    I need baseball!

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  2. Is anyone looking forward to the new Ghost Busters release? I’m hearing a lot of different things about it. One person said the movie itself wasn’t too bad, except when they tried way too hard for call-outs to the original two movies. One person said that if you went into it expecting to hate it for it’s “Girl Power” theme, then you won’t be disappointed. General expectations seem to be really low, yet everyone seems to want to talk about it at the same time. Personally, I will see it, but I’m not going to pay movie theater prices. I liked GB 1 more than GB 2, but I was never a huge fan. Honestly I think I liked the cartoon more than the movies. I don’t care about the girl power parts, but the feeling I got from the trailers is that they simply tried too hard. I kind of wish the movie was it’s own thing. Making it a reboot or alternate universe or whatever they did may have put a little too much pressure. But I really like Melissa McCarthy and will see just about anything she’s in. (I got dragged into watching Spy and ended up finding it hilarious, even if it did have a VERY slow start.)

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  3. Still trying to get my SP (student permit) from the LTO office, I got my first test drive from a friend of mine (we rode it at a spacious park, so it’s alright) last week, Honda Civic… And man, I REALLY suck at it… yesterday, I still suck at it… Talk about a real nervous wreck, and a bad week… Thank goodness there’s Baseball to eliminate those let downs.

    I’m kinda alright with shifting gears 1 and 2, making the vehicle stop (shift to neutral) is the thing I’m having trouble the most…

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    • It’s not something that’s natural or completely intuitive, but it quickly becomes second nature. I’ve been driving a stick for a few many years now and I don’t even think about it anymore. Give it time, you’ll get it. Just wait until you start working on downshifting when slowing down. Or shifting in weather.

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  4. As you no doubt realized, I was in Germany during the European Backandforthandbakandforthandbckandforthball championships which Germany mercifully lost to France while I still had four days to go in Berlin, freeing up beaucoup biergarten space for my conference colleagues and I to stretch out and pig out beneath the lindens and oaks. Meanwhile the Tour de France was also in progress, and I watched, slightly bemused, as otherwise intelligent and probative adults sat staring at a television screen showing people on bicycles from up close in front or from helicopters overhead doing not much else than pedaling incessantly. At that point, the race had a week and a half to go.

    Okay, whatever tweaks your bippy, I guess.

    But life is better now. Baseball tomorrow. My epic midseason Feesh report is in process of composition, for later.

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    • Welcome home, OG. When we were in London in mid-June my grandson and I would hit the TV after 10 PM to watch re-runs of the Euro 2016’s. So far it is the closest I have come to really appreciating soccer.

      But televised bicycle races? No thank you.

      And thank God baseball is almost back.

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    • OG, I’ll admit to watching quite a lot of the TdF coverage but not because I’m any kind of bike racing fan (I’m too old for lycra anyway). France Television, the host broadcaster, does a great job of mixing the race coverage with frequent helicopter views of spectacular French scenery and items of historical interest. The English/Australian commentary we receive is well-versed in the upcoming camera subjects by France TV, so they include many notes of interest on the towns and historical items seen on the screen.

      Watching the TdF for me has become a sort of French travelogue-cum-history lesson. Just watching a bunch of guys pedalling their bikes is no fun, so I overcome that by recording the program, and then replay at a medium fast-forward speed, say 5x, then reverting to normal speed when something interesting comes along. That reduces about 4-5 hours of race coverage into about 30 mins.

      The bike race itself does have moments of great excitement and occasional sheer terror, such as a high speed descent from a mountain pass (in the rain). The riders are genuine athletes, even if some have shown a fondness for certain pharmaceutical supplements in the past.

      By the way, cycle racing is not the most boring sport I’ve ever seen on TV. In the UK, I once saw a televised estuary fishing competition, where each competitor was on a time limit and had a fixed length of river bank from where to cast their line. I’ve no idea how it finished but, for the 10 minutes or so that I watched after the assembled anglers threw in their lines, absolutely nothing happened. Add in some slow, polite English commentary and I guarantee that show for a permanent insomnia cure.

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  5. Since I know that not much news from here travels further than New Zealand, I’ll just quickly note that we had a Federal Government election earlier this month. All you election-weary folks in the US might be surprised to hear our entire Australian election process – from the Prime Minister calling it and announcing the date, through the completion of vote counting – took just over nine weeks. And that’s actually unusually long by our standards, in part due to a very close outcome in many districts.

    For those interested in such things, I’ll add a few points on how our system operates:

    Voting here is compulsory; we register with an Electoral Commission, not with a party. And we’re fined if we don’t have good cause for not showing up on the day
    The independent Commission sets district boundaries with close-to-equal numbers of voters in each, hence no gerrymandering
    Australia does not have a presidential system; we’re closer to the UK in that we vote for a local House of Reps candidate and the party that ends up with the most Reps will usually elect their leader as Prime Minister
    House of Reps terms are nominally three years, but the PM can call an election early under certain circumstances. This last term went 2.5 years
    At the Federal level, we have no electronic or machine voting. It’s all done with pencil and paper, followed by a manual count conducted by the Commission with party scrutineers present
    We also vote for a Senate with 12 of those fine citizens (cough) elected from each State and two from each Territory. In my State, New South Wales, there were 151 Senate candidates (12 each from a variety of parties, plus a bunch of single issue tub-thumpers), so the ballot paper was over 1 metre wide…
    Our voting system is preferential, so the Reps ballot paper requires a number in every square (Senate just 1-12, or just vote for a party). Any candidate achieving 50%+1 first preference votes in their district is automatically elected, otherwise the count moves on to a 2nd preference count, and so on until one candidate gets the necessary majority.
    Elections are held on a Saturday. There are numerous polling places in each electorate (local schools or town halls typically) and there is rarely a long queue waiting to vote.
    Polling places often attract small fund-raising groups running a BBQ or such like, and it’s a running joke among Australians that the biggest question on election day is not who to vote for, but which sauce to have on the steak or sausage sandwich.

    Finally, our two major political groups occupy pretty much the centre and centre-right space, with a couple of significant but smaller groups on the centre-left. Outside of that, we do tend to vote in a few Senators from tiny but loud, angst-ridden fringe parties, all hopeful of influencing a close vote on some pet issue.

    Good luck with your vote in November, and may the best woman win!

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    • I have intentionally not been paying attention to our election. I figure I’ll check out the candidates after the conventions decide who they’re putting up. Our elections only last so long because people pay attention to them. If everyone was like me, ours would only be a few months. But then, if everyone was like me, a lot of things in the US would be very different.

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