The Rundown

Three large spiral galaxies float in space, surrounded by hundreds of other, more distant galaxies.

Gooooooooooood morning America . . . are you still out there?

It’s been another week in which our sublime inner selves got reduced in saucy front page headlines bordering (okay, totally exceeding) ridiculousness. The country, and really, the whole wide world, seems one big mess of a traveling circus; the likes of which would have had P.T. Barnum hauling our asses into court for infringing on his not so intellectual property.

Good thing we have more treats from the candy bag that is NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope. The above capture is from The Atlantic and it features something called the Cartwheel Galaxy. This masterpiece is a more finely complex spiral than anything Tom Brady can dream of cooking up. Alas, it lives more than 500 million light years from our front porch, which makes road tripping this magical place out of the question. But it’s okay, because it brings to mind Mark Twain’s crush on astronomy, in which he confessed he was a slave to its mysteries. He reveled in losing time to the primordial ocean above because it made him feel less confounded about the plight of humankind.

I do believe the stars speak the language of Twain. Bob Marley too.

Final shootout scene from Scarface except its Tony Montana vs 77 Seven Year Olds : r/whowouldwin

Oh God. Him again.

In a scene reminiscent of a really shitty action movie on Amazon Prime, FBI officials executed a search warrant on the Trump compound in Mar-a-Lago this week. They were after records and classified materials the former president took with him when he skipped town last January. Trump wasn’t in attendance for the ten-hour search party, so his mindless minions gathered outside as if it was ten cent wing night at Applebee’s. Because nothing says patriotism like waving flags and wearing merch that was made in China whilst defending a guy who incited a riot in our nation’s capitol . . .

Next up . . . Trump declares he’s running for president of Nicaragua!

Robert Pope: Guinness-fuelled man runs width of Ireland in a day - BBC News

Robert Pope is actually running for something that will make a positive difference. Nuts, right? Yeah, the guy decided he was going to run the width of Ireland-which is a majestically arduous 134 mile trek if you’re talking sneakers. And okay, so plenty of guys have made similar promises in pubs across the land of Joyce and Wilde and Beckett. After which they returned to their healthy pints and forgot all about it.

Not this 44 year old ultramarathoner, who made good on his promise in . . . are you sitting down? Twenty three hours; from Galway to Dublin with the goal of raising money for the World Wildlife Fund putting the wind in his sails. He drank a pint of Guinness before starting and then bent elbows with the locals for another one at the finish line.

That’s my kind of guy.

Dump the NFL Already! - Rampant Discourse

Once upon a time not so long ago, Deshaun Watson insisted he had nothing to hide and that he would never settle with the more than two dozen massage therapists who filed suit alleging he treated them like sex workers. And then he settled with most of them. After which he talked as if he was the one being victimized.

Then retired judge Sue Robinson- who had been brought in by the league to recommend his discipline- decided on a six-game suspension. Which is a slap in the wrist to Watson and a slap in the face to all the women involved in this sordid tale. But hey, she was following precedence after all. Because the NFL has a history of treating bad guys with velvet gloves. And then along came a deviant asshole quarterback and a woebegone franchise that was willing to hand him a quarter of a billion guaranteed dollars anyway . . and now Goodell and his bosses find religion. They’re vowing to make Watson sit out a year and the players are vowing to sue if they try it.

Stay tuned.

Reds vs. Cubs prediction: Odds and pick for 2022 Field of Dreams game in Iowa

The Field of Dreams game is the best idea the MLB has pitched (Pun Alert!) to the fans in a long time. Interleague play was simply an excuse for teams to jack up prices, and the universal DH hasn’t changed a thing. Iowa is different. The games feel important; the kind of important that used to breathe through transistor radios in the spring and summer before culminating in an operatic fall classic that captured the imagination of a rapt nation.

And while I’m no fan of the million and one uniforms most teams peddle on their shop sites, I have to admit I really love the vintage threads. Chicago’s baseball teams probably wouldn’t mind turning the clock back a hundred years, judging by their perfect record in Costner’s backyard. Hopefully the game is back after next year’s hiatus, because I’d love to see a wrong done right before the first pitch with an announcement that proves just how magical that cornfield in Iowa really is.

Put Shoeless Joe in the Hall of Fame

Vinyl Cool Sticker Funny Mickey Mouse Middle Finger Comics - Etsy

Disney+ has announced how it plans to celebrate now that it has surpassed rival Netflix, having clocked in with 221 million streaming customers. Mickey Mouse Inc. is going to be hiking prices come the end of the year (Just in time for Christmas!). The company cites production costs for the increase, and I believe it. But I also don’t care since I’m not a Disney fan. And I have to ask: Does this make me a communist? Or a person with common sense?

Russia bombs nuclear plant in Ukraine, sparks radiation fears - India News

Speaking of communists . . .

Russia is to nuclear reactors what the Kardashian girls are to love and romance. So the news that Russian forces went in hot in their takeover of a nuclear power plant in southeastern Ukraine should give the world pause. Putin’s idea is to bully/frighten all of his naysayers into submission with thoughts of the ultimate dirty bomb in the offing. I think we’ve given this guy too much leash for too long a period of time. But hey, dealing with bullies on the playground is much easier than dealing with bullies who have a nuclear arsenal at their disposal.

I wonder what The Expendables are up to?

And Imma tuck this week’s episode to sleep with definitive proof of life on other planets.

These other planets do not require a million lifetimes worth of navigation to reach them. They exist on every block of every street of every neighborhood of every town we call home. The stories might require some diligent research on our part, but I assure you, the wonders they provide will make you appreciate the time expended.

When Kaiden Shelton of Pearland, Texas lost control of a pitch to Isaiah Jarvis of Tulsa, Oklahoma, the crowd in Waco, Texas went silent. After Jarvis was able to not only brush it off, but continue playing, you could almost hear the collective sigh of relief that rippled through the stands. Excepting for Kaiden Shelton, who remained stuck on that runaway fastball as he struggled to regain his composure on the mound. When Jarvis became aware of this, he called timeout before walking over to his rival to offer him a hug.

And it was right then and there that another planet was discovered, right here on earth. A planet that was fat with hope and humanity and compassion; elements that are vitally important when it comes to life and living. Elements that we tend to lose sight of, even if they never stop showing up. And for the infinite shine those stars provide us?

I’d like to think we return the favor.


51 thoughts on “The Rundown

  1. There is certainly amazing things happening around us. Some that make us smile and give us hope and others that make us wonder what in the world is going on. I try to stay on the side of positive, so most days I try not to pay attention to the news. I am going to stay hopeful and pray there are more little leaguers who get it. Peace.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. The batter consoling the pitcher who hit him was the very best thing I saw all week, and kudos for highlighting that. The Field Of Dreams Game…we see that very differently. I view it from a cynical standpoint of using that iconic site just to make more tv money. I think I’ve watched about three minutes total from them, and that was just changing channels headed elsewhere. As far as baseball team uniforms in general, I’d love to see one home, one away, and one home alternate uniform for each team. But, that ship sailed a long time ago…I just wanted to vent. The NFL vs. Watson thing…It took me a minute or two to understand why the third party judge would rule only six games, and that’s all on the NFL for not taking earlier domestic and sex violence seriously. The judge had to consider their prior “penalties.” The NFLPA would fight to the death for a murderer even if they only got a fine. The NFL PR people mess up every single thing they touch- dumb as a post. It will be interesting to see how this plays out. In my opinion, Watson should take the year off and the young man should get some assistance working through his problems. I don’t know why Disney would announce a price increase so far away from its implementation, especially with the way the world is spinning these days. By then, they might want to ask for more money for Mickey. And yeah, do that at the Holidays (which have already started here since Spirit Halloween is hiring).

    Liked by 2 people

    • I don’t watch the Little League tournament, because I think networks like ESPN turn these kids into something else.

      As for your ideas on the Field of Dreams game? It’s a money grab alright. But so’s everything the MLB does. I like the game because it’s different, it stands out. I’m amazed the sports leagues don’t do more stuff like this really. Like, how about an NBA game in the Coliseum? No crowd of course, but the Association showed in 2020 it can carry that off.

      Watson does need help. Lots of help.

      Disney’s brand is kicking ass right now so they figure they can do as they please.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Great rundown, Marco. Like all the jillion streaming services around, folks gotta choose just which ones merit the monthly fee. Luckily my non-smart TV is a hassle to view any of them, thereby saving me some moola for more important purchases and saving time I’ll never recover for watching all these options.

    Gotta ‘love’ the NFL’s getting religion. Now if only the player’s association would get a conscience though that seems doubtful. Which is exactly why I switched my favorite team to one played on the ice where humanitarians and decent folk seem more likely to hang out.

    While I’m all in favour of adhering to the ‘rule of law’ and think there needs to be consequences for actionable deviations, I think any chance the Dems had in the midterms just flew out the door with the serving of the FBI warrant on Mar-a-Lago. He who must not be named gets more media coverage and the Dems walked into a sure fire election catastrophe. When will they ever learn?

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Excellent Pilgrim. I have to say the Justice department raid was a little over the top and smacks of Orwells 1984. Coupled with the addition of 87,000 IRS agents we are all going to face similar treatment. No fan of orange hair but every American out to take notice of current liberty challenges. by this administration. The rest of the stories were entertaining or warmed the heart. Thanks for sharing

    Liked by 1 person

  5. B,

    Gooooooood morning from Canada! We are still here! I have to say this Rundown is one of my top favourites.

    P.T. Barnum could neve have planned THIS circus!

    That JWST image is so gorgeous, isn’t it? Cartwheel Galaxy is such an apt name, too. Love the bit on Mark Twain, too. The stars definitely speak the language of Twain and Marley.

    That whole Trump/Mar-a-Lago thing. When you think that HE is the one who turned the bill into a felony to bring home classified documents, changing the penalty from one to five years – all in an attempt to get back at Hillary… Talk about hoisting by your own petard.

    Twenty-three hours to run 134 miles? Holy Impressed, Batman! Robert Pope is a man of his word and then some!

    You know my feelings on the whole NFL/Asshole situation. The judge was put in a tough position and did what she had to. It’s not her fault really, that they – the powers that be of the NFL gave such piddly-ass punishments for even harsher crimes. It’s disgusting.

    I love the idea of the Field of Dreams games. I actually watched it! Who’d a thunk? Whether they charge an arm and a leg for the tickets, is another thing. I love the vintage threads except it was confusing as a non-connoisseur of baseball. Those matching C’s! Thank you pinstripes, for helping me distinguish a tad easier…

    Disney+ claims they have surpassed Netflix – by doing just like them and over-charging. They pull you in, promise all sorts of stuff and then boom! price hike after price hike… And what the hell announcing it in August for Christmas? Bravo assholes.

    I would love for The Expensdables… or the peeps from Reds? to come in and set that Putin straight.

    I was going to suggest the story of the boys, to you. Isaiah Jarvis did not quite brush it off so quickly and that scared the bejeezus out of pour Kaiden Shelton. He was in tears, the poor kid. While everyone was taking a knee and checking on Isaiah, no one gave a thought to Kaiden who was in tears on the mound. What adults could learn from watching these two.

    Your last paragraphs are so beautiful.

    Excellent choice of song!


    Liked by 2 people

    • Q

      An instant classic (in your book)? Imma take that and say muchas gracious!

      P.T. would have flinched at this particular circus.

      It’s a miracle to which we have nothing to add but our collective gaping mouths as we reflect on the wonder of it all.

      I don’t like the way this was carried out and I don’t like anything about Trump and I don’t like how his minions still refuse to see through him. I don’t like any of it.

      If my math is correct, Pope ran at a clip of just under six miles per hour. So yes, give that man a Guinness. For life!

      The judge was only following precedence in this matter. She might have done eight games which I think was probably the cut off point, after which the NFLPA would have probably appealed the hell out of it in an effort to reduce. The only problem I have with her decision is that while precedence is understandable in determining the ruling, her language has me curious as to why she didn’t go higher. She called it predatory. I would have hit him with 12 so the league could get 8 or 10.

      The game is a breath of fresh air. I don’t know why they don’t do more of this. Someone had the idea to try a different ballpark next season since Iowa is out for now. They said something about using an old Negro League park, which had me wondering if there were any still around and how viable they would be if so.

      Disney is a good product with lots of shows that people love. I have no problem with them. I just though the timing was odd, to announce a price hike this far out. I looked at their price structures and they’re more than fair. Why piss people off? Up the prices now or soon and don’t make a big thing about it. The adjusted price is still good. I just don’t happen to NEED Disney in my life. But I know a lot of people who love it.

      If only!

      What a moment. That kid who got hit in the head, how tough is HE? And then to have the presence of mind and the compassion to make sure his opponent was okay? That kid is a champ.

      Thank you. How sweet you are.



      Liked by 1 person

      • Yes, I would say. And I shall respond with a de nada but a gracias a tu!

        He would have covered his eyes with his hands.

        Miracle is appropriate in this case.

        I don’t blame you for not liking it. Every time something happens, I wonder if this is a new precedent. It’s not a good one.

        Whoa… That is quite the clip.

        I know she was. Why the hell did she not feel the need to break that precedence by creating a new one. As you said, she,, herself, called it predatory. Why give this paltry amount? It’s still not enough but shit.

        I know what you mean. I want to smack the naysayers who can’t just enjoy what it is. Are there any still around? Good question,

        I really don’t get Disney for this particular move. It is very strange. When I remember we have it, I enjoy it. There is way more than child-friendly content on it, too.

        Where’s Stallone when you need him?

        That kid who got hit is muy tough. And proof that tough can also mean having a big empathetic heart. So many could learn from him.

        You know me… I say what I mean.


        Liked by 1 person

  6. I want to high-five and kiss Robert (while wishing I was my 35-year-old ultrarunning self again), hug Isaiah and Kaiden for their innocence and empathy, and join Twain’s stardust while gazing at the night sky to help me ignore and/or forget all the sordid shit going down. Another one for the books, Marc. Thanks.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I seem to remember you mentioning that about yourself. I bow in respect to you. I love running, even if I’m not on the level of you folks. No matter, I do me and I love it. I’m thankful I am still running all these years later. One of the best habits I ever had.

      Robert rocks. All that for a good cause AND Guinness? Score!

      I’ll join you in that stargaze. Here’s to the worlds that make sense.


  7. I am sure that the stars speak the language of Marley. Twain I’ll have to think about :-). Young boys who can show emotion when they’re upset rock. Older male coaches to tell them that they are all right in a voice that sounds like they want them to stop showing that emotion? Ick. You should’ve let him get it out so he could move on. So many other wonderful things to comment on here but those were my first two thoughts so I had to share. Great post.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Marley was a sage. Twain would provide me the witty narration, as if a sports broadcaster, only much more interesting than that.

      I remember my coaches and they pretty much all sucked excepting for Mr. Nelson. And the only reason he was cool is because he was an out of control alcoholic among other things. He said the oddest shit but he was never ever mean, never a dick about sports and sportsmanship like the other coaches. He was our Buttermaker, only more chill than that.

      I appreciate that CK.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. I was talking to my son a couple of days ago. We are both Steelers’ fans, so take this conversation with a graint of salt if you must, but … I told him that I hope the Browns have another few decades of futility as punishment for signing Watson and not just signing him, but giving him all of that guaranteed money. It is the complete opposite of rational to do so while he was in the middle of this crapfest. It is just stunning that they did it and they deserve to ride the futility train for a long time.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. When did entertainment become more important than respect? We give millions of dollars to people with the intelligence of a gnat because they can throw a ball well and then we dismiss their egregious behaviour. We do it with politicians and actors too. Why aren’t they treated appropriately? They should be jailed! And yet that young man who was hit with the ball who showed incredible compassion to his rival, he should be applauded!

    Liked by 2 people

  10. Hi – the rundown today covered a nice variety – and while I thought Jarvis handled the baseball to the head with grace (and quite a video – wow) but he really likely had a concussion and possible damage ….
    but it was nice to see the pitcher remorseful.

    And had to laugh at “really shitty action movie on Amazon Prime” because that is so true
    And not a Disney fan over here either ….
    And I am shocked they surpassed Netflix so quickly – however – it could be because they had such low intro prices – or it came free with some other promos – and so those subscribers might not be long term – esp if prices go up – but I guess we shall see

    Liked by 1 person

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