Joe Pesci Reads Today’s Birthday Horoscope!

Scorpio Zodiac Sign: Horoscope, Compatibility, Careers & More

Yo . . . Scorpio! Ya gonna have a pretty great fucking day, as long as you don’t open ya trap. Because you know what happens when ya start yapping. Somewhere along the line, your brain ain’t communicating with ya mouth and before long, there’s a shit factory happening and you’re producing a surplus! Also, don’t get involved in any property matters today because you’re really not very good at them. Same goes for tomorrow, the next day, the next week, the rest of the year and well . . I hope ya get my fucking point by now.

If ya keep a positive mindset, da sky is da limit. But since it’s damn near impossible for you to do so, keep ya feet on the ground and stay inside all day. But since you don’t get along with common sense . . at all . . if you really wanna face your fears on your special day, go out for Mexican. Invite your in-laws. And oh yeah, do some tequila shots before they get there. Oh shit, nevah mind! I forgot! You did that last night!

At work you might be challenged, but you can use your expertise to problem solve the shit out of any obstacles that come your way. And if that doesn’t work, you can always sleep with da boss. And if that doesn’t work, collecting unemployment for a couple months ain’t the worst thing that could happen. My Uncle Tony did that after he lost his job breaking the kneecaps of degenerate gamblers. Actually, he lost his job because they wasn’t degenerate gamblers, they was late in returning their videos to Blockbuster.

Remember that you only live once. Oh no, that’s not right. You only die once.

 

A Million Miles Away And Closing Fast

Welcome to Iowa state road sign Stock Photo by ©alexlmx 101851732

There are some days when I feel like the world really is the matrix; an elaborate and complicated labyrinth of shushing doors and dimly lit hallways that lead to a master lab where a billionaire God runs things with a CPU that processes quintillions of operations in the flap of a hummingbird’s wings.

Okay, there are many days when I feel this way.

I’m not saying we’re artificially generated beings with a predestined flight pattern that takes us from conception to calamari with nary a wiggle’s worth of holy shitake with which to rewrite the final score. Nah, that’s too orthodox for the trip we’re keeping to. The fact that we hurt and we ache and we bleed means we’re more like organic compositions with enough roust for the joust.

Truth be told, the mysteries of creation are as infinite as Nick Saban’s recruiting list. I grew up believing the world had been fetched from a fledgling filament that filibustered its way out of a galactic dark room. Some of the most brilliant students of the cosmos, and Albert Einstein, have disagreed with this theory. Their argument, put simply, is that you ain’t getting something out of nothing.

That’s where my matrix idea comes in. It exists in plain sight because we’re so busy contemplating how we got here that we never considered why. Thousands of years ago, the search for that first dusty footprint involved serious old men sitting around smoking their brains trying to figure out who rolled this joint into being. Hundreds of years ago, that search resulted in the invention of the telescope which allowed for a nuanced interrogation of the stars. Last year, on Christmas Day no less, the James Webb space telescope was launched. And as captivating as the images it captured were, when it comes to the biggest question of all, humankind is still . . wait for it . . in the dark.

I happen to believe we were highjacked by a more advanced species at some point in our distant or not so distant past. This holistic takeover was undertaken in the name of what else? Science! These superior beings, we’ll call them Martians for lack of a less dramatic name, rolled us across this plush swatch of green like a hot pair of dice at a high stakes table. Which makes us a templated test kit that grew out of its britches with a reckless ferocity, much to the delight . . . or dismay, of our silent masters. I guess they’ll sic one of those asteroids on our asses if it’s the latter. I don’t know and you don’t know and neither do those white lab coats, in spite of their caviar budgets and champagne trips to the outer limits.

But when I question things, it’s not God I’m sitting across from. It’s the million little tells we overlook because we’re so busy trying to crack the cosmic case, the same way Agent Kujan swung right through the hanging fastballs Verbal Kint was serving up in The Usual Suspects. 

A top five list of things that make me go What’s up with That? . . . Okie.

1- Glitching- As defined, this means an unusual occurrence that cannot be logically explained. In the last decade alone, we’ve experienced President Trump, a perennial title contender in Beantown and the image of an ordinary egg that earned the most Instagram likes . . ever.

2-Mirror Images- We get caught up in the idea of doppelgangers while the experts claim the odds of a perfect facial match are one in eight trillion.  But that doesn’t explain how Natalie Portman and Keira Knightley could stand in for each other in the same Broadway production (they haven’t . . I don’t think) and get away with it. My point being, exact replicas are scant but reasonable facsimiles are everywhere. Which is exactly as it would be if we have carbon copies in the cosmos.

3-The Mandela Effect- The dude didn’t die in prison, but many would wager money that he did (I haven’t wagered any dough on this . . . I don’t think). Just as many people grew up reading the Berenstain Bears while many other people grew up reading the Berenstein Bears. Hmmmm.

4- Universal Laws- Says who? Our scientists or some other planet’s game makers? Or is it both?

5- The LA Lakers Magic Johnson vs the Boston Celtics Larry Bird had to have come from a simulation. It was just too fucking perfect.

All I really know for absolute-ish certainty is that we are blood and guts because the Rambo movies told me so. I also know we are incredibly fragile, vulnerable creatures because Hallmark is still in business. And I know we’ve got a soul because opera makes us cry. The rest is going to remain a mystery to me until the lights go out. After which I’ll wake up in a biodome on some space outpost with a huge sign welcoming me to Iowa and rewarding me for my involvement in the Earth project with a million years worth of steak, bourbon and smokes.

I’ll chill with the questions.

 

 

 

 

The Rundown

A small dog wears a costume during a parade.

I conducted a science experiment the other day and the results were uglier than a Kanye West bank statement. My test involved scrolling through my browser history to check out how many of the stories I was culling for today’s episode landed on the minus side of the ledger. I found eleven stories and all of them were sunshine bandits, so I trashed them. But the thought remained steadfast.

The struggle for good news is real.

It’s why humankind should appreciate cats and dogs more. They don’t ask for much and they give back everything. If they wanted to charge for their services, the price would be steep, and a bargain at that. Which is why I chose that handsome little fella above for the marquee. He was taking part in the Halloween Dog Parade in Tompkins Square Park, NYC. In a world full of dirty rotten tricks, there are treats to be found if we look hard enough.

Let’s stroll the grounds . . .

I’ve had it up to here (I’m holding my hand over my full pint glass) with these car companies and their electric boogaloo mission statements. But this story mellowed that harsh temporarily and for good reason.

The peeps at Honda have designed an electric vehicle for the kids at Children’s Health in Orange County, California. The ride you’re checking out is called Shogo and it was made with the express intent of bringing smiles for miles whilst delivering the kids to their treatments. It leaves gurneys, wheelchairs and those hospital blues in the dust, and that’s the point.

“To see the joy on the faces of these young patients when they get behind the wheel of Shogo is truly rewarding,” said Hundy Liu, manager of national advertising at American Honda Motor Co.

That’s a full tank right there.

As the inimitable Dan Lafontaine would’ve said, in a world where any and every good movie and television series is imitated and duplicated into meatloaf, leave it to the Rocky franchise to punch its way out of the cookie cutter conspiracy. Because from the moment they cast Michael B. Jordan as the protagonist for the Creed universe, I scored this refresh knockout win.

The initial installment proved me right while the sequel might’ve lost something on points. But the trailer for Creed III tells me we are back in business and badder than ever. And this fan cannot wait.

Miss Argentina and Miss Puerto Rico got married! Meet LGBT beauty queens Mariana Varela and Fabiola Valentín who just tied the knot in a private wedding after a two-year secret romance |

Mariana Varela and Fabiola Valentin are more than just a couple of pretty faces. They’re also married, having tied the knot recently to the surprise and delight of fans and guys with too much time on their hands everywhere. The former Miss Argentina, Varela met Valentin, the former Miss Puerto Rico at the Miss Grand International competition in Thailand in 2020 and from there, love punched their dance card.

On a stage full of Misses, these two are a hit.

Astros pitcher Cristian Javier's dad saw him pitch for first time | khou.com

If you’d have put the twelve MLB teams that made the 2022 postseason in a casual fan wish list of must see World Series clubs, the Houston Astros would’ve battled the Tampa Rays for last with the Phillies not too far behind them. And yet, these two have provided a compelling Fall Classic to this point- what with the Phillies coming back from a 5-0 deficit in the opener to win it, to their home run derby performance in Game 3. The Astros moved to the brink of a title last night with Justin Verlander winning his first ever World Series game, and I had no idea this HOF dude was even on such a schneid!  And I’d be remiss and totally recalcitrant if I didn’t mention how Cristian Javier made like Nolan Ryan with his six no hit innings on Wednesday night. The Houston bullpen kept the home team hitless the rest of the way, delivering the first no-hit game in a World Series since Don Larson’s perfecto for the Yankees all the way back in 1956. I didn’t see that one since I hadn’t been born yet and I didn’t see last night’s game either since I was sleeping.

It still counts.

John Ramer (@johnramerphoto) / Twitter

My Hero of the Week! for this first episode of November is John Ramer, the executive director of Kindness Ranch. This guy was one of the integral point guards for the largest animal rescue effort ever recorded last month. Thanks to the tireless efforts of hundreds of agencies and thousands of people, more than 4,000 beagles were freed from their not so happy home.

Envigo is a testing facility in Virginia whose business was breeding dogs for testing. With all the low down dirty business of a news cycle we have coming at us on the regular, here was a story that found new lows: Dogs bred for big business pharmaceuticals, raised in awful conditions and treated like commodities whose only value was the bottom line.

Animal rights advocates and legislators and the Department of Agriculture and PETA and the DOJ and the Humane Society and so many countless others put an end to all that. And now all those thousands of beagles do not end up at a lab somewhere else. And now they get to run on real grass and sit in the sunshine and walk in the park and eat real food and yeah, maybe even steal some. But that’s okay because they’re going to get hugged. Lots.

And all those stories, forgettable and worse, don’t matter nearly as much as the stories that are gonna be told from every corner of the map. In forever homes that beat back at the struggle for better news by finding their very own.

Every dog gets its day.

 

 

Perfectly Frank: November ’22

Photo by cottonbro on Pexels.com

With one month ending and another starting, Imma asked me to take a break from Beach Walk Reflections and pitch in for some random thoughts. Thanks to Marc for the space.

November 1st is the day after a US lottery of $1 billion, so you are probably hearing the news of one person in Ohio winning the big prize.

I just returned from 17 days in France. A tough task, but I met the challenge. It was great being away from the news and the flood of political ads in my area, so I don’t know much about what happened but I’m confident that politicians said some stupid shit.

A bit of research served as a reminder about Russia-Ukraine, Iranian civil unrest, a new home run record by one of Marc’s heroes, a crazy killing spree in Thailand, a court telling an American conspiracist to pay $1 billion in damages, Liz Truss losing to a head of lettuce, a crowd crush in Seoul, females becoming the majority in New Zealand’s parliament, and Massachusetts naming on official state dinosaur.

October deaths included a country music legend, the designer of the first mask-cage hockey goalie mask, a Golden Globe-Tony winner actress who starred on TV, MLB HOF inductee, an R&R pioneer and legend of Great Balls of Fire, and people dying from gun violence, natural disasters, and war.

Photo by cottonbro on Pexels.com

In case you missed it, here are a few October headline gems from The Onion:

  • School budget committee decides to eliminate 4th-grade entirely
  • Scientists find dolphins only other mammal that jet ski for pleasure
  • Man can’t remember what he ran into burning building for
  • Prison warden sadistic but fair
  • Sanitation worker digs around truck for source of weird smell
  • Man suspecting opponent with all queens hustling him
  • Weird bug eaten by weirder bug

Try the Combo Challenge. By using only the words in the above headlines, create your headline, then share it in your comment. My combo appears later in this post.

Wondering: Is incompetence growing?

Did you know normal bone marrow produces 10,000,000,000 red blood cells and 150,000,000 white blood cells every hour?

Our 17-days in France included Paris & Dijon on our own, cruising down the Saone and Rhone rivers tasting wine, and Nice on our own. There were many highlights, but the Carrières des Lumières in Les Baux-de-Provence delivered the biggest surprise. It’s a large cave left from a limestone stone quarry that has been transformed into a magnificent walk-around theater for digital displays on its large walls. We saw Venice (a short clip if interested), but the clip below is from an older show about Gaudi. FYI: For those who have seen the traveling immersions about Van Gogh, Monet, or others, as good as those shows are, they cannot compare to the cave experience!

Because today starts a new month, it’s time for an overview of some of the celebrations on October’s plate. For a complete list of November celebrations, click here.

Monthly celebrations for November include picture books, banana pudding, family stories, pomegranates, memoir writing, sweet potatoes, and vegans.

November is also a month to increase your awareness about diabetes, epilepsy, family adoption, bone marrow, and gluten-free diets.

Weekly toasts in November include figs (1-7), Dear Santa letters (7-13), split pea soup (12-18), and better conversations (20-27).

Day celebrations in November include hockey masks (1), Cookie Monster’s birthday (2), pumpkin destruction (4), origami (11), Roc Your Mocs (15), homemade bread (17), Rocky & Bullwinkle (19), and Slinkies (27). Click here for a complete list.

For anyone wondering, I hope to return to posting my beach walk essays this weekend.

My Combo: Sadistic dolphins eliminate school sanitation worker hustling burning man

Because we were in the land of Van Gogh, I close this edition with a musical tribute to him accompanied by a similar illumination show in Paris. Have a good November everyone. I’m out of here, Happy Calzone Day!

Joe and Marco at the Movies!

Back in the day, I was relatively familiar with film critics because there used to be a symmetry to their presence. Gene Shalit was a fixture of morning shows while Leonard Maltin appeared on Entertainment Tonight. Siskel and Ebert would work it on their weekend show with Richard Roeper playing the versatile utility man. And I would be remiss if I didn’t include Rex Reed and Peter Travers, who plied their craft with bark and bite.

And then the medium went democratic and the finery of flapping gums was replaced with websites and blogs and podcasts bucking the big box office behemoth known as Rotten Tomatoes. It’s gotten to where you can’t tell the players even with a scorecard, so me and my pal Joe have decided to pair up for a top five list ‘o the week.

What’s the worst that could happen?

Where To Watch 'Barbarian' 2022 (Free) Online Streaming at Home Here's How - TechBullion

Marco: We’ll start with a movie that I absolutely loved called Barbarian by director Zach Cregger. It’s a brilliantly directed horror story that deftly weaves together the lost American dream with the #MeToo movement while making Airbnb users think twice before going in those waters.

Joe: I don’t know how in the fuck you got all dat outta dis!

Marco: Oh come on Joe! The cast was dynamic, and I loved Richard Brake in such an understated departure from his usual maniacal self. And the way Cregger played the scenes against each other was pure genius!

Joe: All I kept asking myself is, who da fuck rents an Airbnb in Detroit?!

Marco: Okay Joe, you take the next flick.

Joe: If it gets you to shut da fuck up for five seconds . . gladly.

Blackout - Official Trailer - YouTube

I wanted to love this one since it’s about a guy who forgets that he’s married and gets away with it! I mean, I done this trick many times and it always ended in divorce court so yanno, I thought maybe I would learn something. What I learned was that I wasted an hour and a half of my life watching this bag of dicks run from Mexican gangsters with bad hair . . . Oh, I’m sorry, Mexican businessmen with guns. Josh Duhamel is da main character and I remember seeing him a while back in a romantic comedy I accidentally watched eight times. He was much better in that, because Liam Neeson he ain’t. Nick Nolte plays his boss in this one, which is unfuckingbelievable since I think he died ten years ago.

Your turn Marco.

The Good Nurse (2022) - IMDb

Another favorite of mine is The Good Nurse starring the Academy Award winning actress Jessica Chastain. It’s based on the true story of serial killer Charles Cullen, whose arrest in 2003 uncovered the insidiously dark side of our healthcare system. Chastain breaks open her Hall of Fame toolbox as Amy Loughren, the nurse who helped authorities bring Cullen to justice. Eddie Redmayne is a maestro in his turn as the antagonist whose seething rage keeps us on the edge of our seats. The deliberate pace of the movie mirrors the painstakingly slow wheels of justice.

Samaritan': 'Overlord' Director's Dark Superhero Movie Starring Sylvester Stallone Arrives in August - Bloody Disgusting

Fuck slow wheels, I want action! Which is what I thought I was gonna get with Samaritan, a movie that stars my old neighbor Sly Stallone. Get this, the old man plays a superhero who retired from that gig so he could be a garbage man. I think da guy who came up with this idea musta been related to Mrs. Stallone. Of course there’s this pain in the ass neighbor kid, because there’s always a pain in the ass neighbor kid in these movies, and he’s da one who figures out his garbage man has superhuman strength. Sly is seventy six years old for fuck sake. His only superpowers at this point involve staying up past nine and being regular. This movie is more ridiculous than my Uncle Sal’s idea to put wine in juice boxes.

Halloween Ends | Universal Pictures

Joe: No fucking way.

Marco: Nope.

The Rundown

A replica of the Statue of Liberty made of illuminated pumpkins

The townsfolk on the Hudson know their business when it comes to getting down at Halloween time. The above capture is called The Great Jack O’Lantern Blaze and it’s a collection of lit pumpkins hand sculpted into a righteous replica of the Statue of Liberty. You don’t have to be Ichabod Crane to lose your head over this brilliant piece of boo-yeah. Props to the ghosts and goblins in the 914 for doing it up the fright way.

Let’s get to this thing . . .

It’s not heaven. It’s Iowa on Halloween. Check out the above video, which takes the top prize for being monstrously creative. A family in the Hawkeye State came up with the diabolical idea for a door and in the doing, they transformed their crib into the place to be this weekend. Boo? Meet Hahahaha!

Biggest Takeaways from the Fetterman and Oz Debate | Time

Dr. Oz . . . United States Senator.

Yeah, I know it sounds ridiculous. But celebrity politics taught me to never say clever, and Oz is as close to a slam dunk proposition as you’re gonna get right now after this week’s debate with John Fetterman. The former Lieutenant Governor of Pennsylvania put in the kind of performance that will live on YouTube until cats rule the earth. It was disjointed, confounding and in the end, it was sad. Fetterman had a stroke earlier this year and I’m giving him a bowl of Mulligan soup because of it. This was a tough watch.

2022 MLB World Series Dueling Pin - Astros vs. Phillies

The World Series starts tonight and I have to agree with Tony Kornheiser and Michael Wilbon when it comes to the timing. Both Houston and Philadelphia wrapped up their business on Sunday, so common sense (which hasn’t been seen since hot dogs met mustard) would dictate a Tuesday start for the Fall Classic. Four days of an unimpeded spotlight, at least two games worth of grabbing the attention of fans outside of Houston and Philadelphia. But nope, the MLB is going right into the belly of the football beast by plunging head first into a college/professional football weekend in the deep get of fall. Which means that Rob “Fan Friendly” Manfred will be able to personally call every fan outside of the two cities involved in the series to thank them for tuning in.

The baseball poohbahs still don’t get it.

Actor Russell Crowe has earned his share of forgettable headlines over the years. The guy loves him some fisticuffs, I understand this. But he’s making this episode for helping to save a business that was fighting for its very survival.

Dan and Leanne Fridd opened the doors to their new business, Bookbugs and Dragon Tales Bookshop in Norfolk England, in 2019. And then came, well . . . you know. Things were keeping on but barely and so the couple started a Crowdfunder campaign in order to stow some flow. Neighbors, friends and regulars helped plenty. And then the star of Gladiator chipped in with a donation that would’ve had made Marcus Aurelius proclaim No he di . . int! 

Crowe did, and the bookstore’s keep on is looking more hopeful than ever as a result. And it’s always a special thing when people like the Fridds, who have done such great good work with schools and the community at large, receive this kind of payback.

They asked for some help and they got Maximus.

David Gordon Green seems like a genuine fan of the Halloween franchise so I ain’t gonna heap my creep into his trilogy. However- and as the Snake Charmer in Kill Bill would say, there’s always a however- the last two installments of the reboot should be evicted from the Michael Myers estate. I dig ambitious fictional swings just fine but when it comes to gold standard expectations, you gotta connect on a couple or you might as well play golf.

Editorial Side Order: That’s my capture of a life-sized Michael Myers I happened upon at Party City this week. If you have a couple hundred Bennies, you can be the proud owner of this tall, dark and murderous chap. Until the Fed Ex guy bogarts it.

Frankenstein (1931) - IMDb

If you haven’t seen the final (for now) Michael Myers picture show yet, save your cash and go with the original Frankenstein starring Boris Karloff instead. This 1931 classic is what popcorn was made for. And if you wanna binge, go with Bride and Son and you’ll be digging into a worthwhile trilogy. And not for nothing but the story it was based on, The Modern Prometheus by Mary Shelley still holds up, two-hundred and four years after it was written.

Why haven't Spotify and Apple Music pulled Ye's songs? - Los Angeles Times

Kanye West lost two billion dollars in net worth (That’s a B for Bozo), after his anti-Semitic rants, which means he’ll probably throw his hat into the ring for the 2024 Draft Kings Presidential Octagon Match. Hey, Trump ran and won in 2016 after freely admitting that he sexually assaulted women. Why wouldn’t Kanye- sorry Ye- get right by going all in for the cast iron throne?

Too soon?

The Oklahoma nonprofit that serves the homeless needs Halloween costumes - Oklahoma News

The City Rescue Mission in Oklahoma City currently houses more than 100 children. These kids are either homeless or at risk so when it comes to frightening propositions, they don’t need October 31st to provide. They’re living it. It’s why we have places like the mission; to provide a safe haven for families who need a helping hand.

Tonight the place will celebrate the kids with a trick-or-treat event. The kids get to dress up before venturing through several immersive sets constructed by the good people whose labor is all about love. There’s going to be a Willy Wonka Chocolate Factory and a Candy Land as well as a scene by scene set from The Wizard of Oz.

The President and CEO Erin Goodin says the mission currently has the largest number of families it’s ever housed and that the event helps to bring everyone together in a community setting. “We want to build them up so everything we do here, we don’t do scary. We do fun and uplifting,”.

Goodin and her colleagues will play characters from the movie and she’ll be dressing up as the Wicked Witch of the West for tonight’s event. But when she taps her toes, she will be singing a familiar and much needed refrain.

There’s no place like home.

Hells Bells, We Have A Series

Phillies-Padres Game 5 live updates: Philadelphia defeat San Diego 4-3 to advance to World Series - 6abc Philadelphia

It wasn’t supposed to work out this way.

The Phillies were 21-29 to start the season and it cost manager Joe Girardi his job. That’s when the town turned its attention to the state of their football team, figuring their boys in pinstripes were as done for as the Mudville Nine. And just when the team was starting to show some life under interim skipper Rob Thomson, Bryce Harper went out with a fractured thumb in a late June game against the San Diego Padres of all teams.

What happened from that point on is baseball at its most ridiculous.

Which means to say, in a division which housed the World Series champion Braves and the Steve Cohen super-funded Mets, the Phillies snuck in the back door and somehow ended up being the last act standing on the biggest stage.

They first had to get past the St. Louis Cardinals; an organization that knows October on a doctorate level. In the swan song seasons for two future Hall of Famers- Albert Pujols and Yadier Molina- the Cards were as formidable a bunch as any when the matchups were released. And all Philadelphia did was sweep them right out of their best of three opening round series.

From there it was on to Atlanta to take on the hottest team in the MLB over the last couple months. And did I mention they were the defending heavyweight champions? I don’t think the Phillies got that memo, because they took out the Braves three games to one in a series that never really felt that close.

And so it was up to the San Diego Padres to put the ghost of Balboa to sleep for another winter. The Padres were underdogs mainly because they were neighbors with the Dodgers, who kicked their asses all year long, until it counted most. But let’s face it, as much as I crushed on them, San Diego bought itself one hell of a chance to win it all. And in today’s game, that’s what counts.

When the Pads came from behind in Game 2 to tie the series at 1-1, I thought maybe the momentum had shifted. And then Ranger Suarez shut down that expensive San Diego lineup in Game 3 . . . and then the Phillies fought back from a 4-0 deficit in the first inning of Game 4 to win it .  . and then tonight. And those bells that just won’t quit.

“Listen for the bells tonight,” My friend Tye texted me this morning. It was in reference to the bells that chime at Citizens Bank Park when the home team starts impersonating that Balboa guy. The bells mean it’s the fifteenth round, they mean it’s time for the something extra to show itself before the lights go out. And this Phillies team, like them or loathe them (I’m somewhere in between), they’ve been ringing those bells since June. Every time they get knocked down, they find that something extra that gets them off the canvas just in time.

Tonight it was Bryce Harper, digging deep with the Phils down 3-2 in the bottom of the eighth. A runner on first and a chance to show the town and the baseball world that when you talk about the best players in the game, you’re gonna have to consider the guy who works just off I-95. Harper laid off a 1-2 changeup that had a return trip to San Diego written all over it. And then he got his pitch, and he knew exactly what to do with it, depositing it over the left field wall. Phillies 4- San Diego 3.

The rest became postscript. And now it looks like these Phillies will be going to Houston on Friday to take on arguably the best team over the last half decade in the Houston Astros. No trash can sign stealing nonsense this time, the Astros simply kill you with precision. And they’re not just dangerously talented, they’re hungry as junkyard dogs. Because of course it was never going to be an easy road to immortality. It never is with this Phillies team, and they seem to like it that way.

Those bells just got another round.

The Rundown

An aerial shot of dozens of swimmers competing in a race.

October is running away from us faster than a trick or treater in Haddonfield. That’s a Michael Myers reference for those of you who are not familiar. In spite of the negative buzz surrounding the final (yeah right) movie in this terribly tacky trilogy, Halloween Kills is lapping the field at the box office. Remember this the next time some pain in the ass brags about their iPhone. Just because something is popular doesn’t make it worth your time. Sorry Michael.

The above capture is the swimming portion of the 2022 Ironman World Championship which took place in Hawaii earlier this month. Gustav Iden of Norway took home the gold in a time of 7:40:24. The guy swam two and a half miles, biked one-hundred and twelve . . . and then ran a marathon in less time than it takes me to watch a Godfather marathon. After reading about it, I had to take a nap.

Let’s get rolling . . .

The Other Victims of the JFK Assassination - HISTORY

What we know about the inner workings of the halls of power is akin to Pepperidge Farm icing; thin and insubstantial in relation to the heavy shit it’s covering up. So when President Biden refuses to release the more than 16,000 records related to the JFK assassination, he’s just repeating the same playbook as his predecessors. President Clinton signed off on the release of the documents by 2017, and then Trump passed the buck to Biden who is now calling for its release by December 15. And umm . . . don’t hold your breath. This isn’t about finding a vast conspiracy beyond Oswald as most believe he was the lone shooter. And let’s face it, this isn’t about national security interests at this point either. This is about our federal agencies not coming clean after more than a half century of promising to do so. It’s no longer about what they’re hiding.

It’s about why.

Tom Brady drew inspiration from Kim Kardashian and Khloe Kardashian's $3.2 billion company to launch his own clothing line - The SportsRush

The thoughts in my head are akin to those angry birds in the classic 1963 Hitchcock film, only much more pissed off than that. And while I wish my brain would just shush most of the time, I might as well invite company for the misery that resides within. So when I imagined a new celebrity pairing of Tom Brady and Kim Kardashian, I deserved all the trash talk that was heaped upon me for going there. But you have to admit . . . as nightmare scenarios go, Eli Roth ain’t doing better than this one.

Liz Truss warned she has hours to save her job as British prime minister | CNN

The fact that Liz Truss was Prime Minister of the UK for only forty-five days is indicative of the microwaveable nature of our global politics. That’s the shortest term served by a prime minister in the nation’s history. The electorate is a crucible of unreasonable expectations by the peeps who got you there and merciless courts of vitriolic opinion that oftentimes turn bad into worse. I’m not defending her train-wrecked agenda which had financial markets running for cover, but less than two months? And it’s not as if the fast tracked selection process for her successor is littered with slam dunks. Hell, when Boris Johnson’s name comes up as a possible replacement, you have officially entered the eye of a shit storm.

Where have you gone Harry Potter?

Reuters

Rorie Woods of Longmeadow, Massachusetts pulled a dangerous weapon on deputies who had come to serve her with eviction papers and Imma give her some major style points for creativity.

For the record, I ain’t condoning violence against law enforcement (or anyone for that matter). But when the weapon in question is a box full of bees, I have to admit, that wouldn’t have made my top 100 list of ways to get your ass arrested. Woods is a professional beekeeper who wasn’t content with minding her own beeswax and so now she’s got a new home as a result.

And yes, I have a top 100 list of ways to get your ass arrested. What of it?

Some marriages are just made to last.

Mind you, David Squillante and Doran Smith have a long road ahead of them seeing as how they just finished celebrating their honeymoon in Europe. But when the inevitable challenges do crop up, they’ll be able to borrow from their experience on that honeymoon to see them through.

The Rhode Island newlyweds were on their way to a park in Barcelona when they spotted trouble in the form of a group of women standing outside a burning building. Communicating with the panicked ladies didn’t work since none of them spoke English. Having no idea what awaited them on the other side, the lovebirds entered the building anyway.

When they made it to the other side, they were standing in the middle of a nursery. As in, the kind stocked with newborn babies. Yeah, you read that right.

“Instinct took over,” Squillante said. “I found myself looking at 15, 20 babies sleeping, and immediately just kind of lined everyone up and we started grabbing them. . .  It was like probably like ten minutes, but it seemed like an instant, but it turned out to be OK.”

After everyone was safe and accounted for, the hero couple bid the gathering crowd adios and headed for that park. Because there was still a walk to be had and their adrenaline was kicking into overdrive, what with having saved the tomorrows of a couple dozen souls whilst dreaming on the prospects of their own. And so yeah . . . I’d lay a handsome wager that these two will be going long on their ever after.

They already wrote one hell of a happy ending.

 

 

 

 

The Longfellow Rules

“(Baseball) breaks your heart. It is designed to break your heart. The game begins in the spring, when everything else begins again, and it blossoms in the summer, filling the afternoons and evenings, and then as soon as the chill rains come, it stops and leaves you to face the fall all alone. You count on it, rely on it to buffer the passage of time, to keep the memory of sunshine and high skies alive, and then just when the days are all twilight, when you need it most, it stops.” 

-A. Bartlett Giamatti

Bart Giamatti was the shortest tenured commissioner in the history of the game, and perhaps the last real one. Because while his predecessors- Selig and Manfred- have been prolific at pimping and gimmickry, Giamatti used a deep and abiding love for the game as his compass. He would’ve been in all four corners of the country this October, taking it all in and penning more of that good thing.

Expanding the postseason was a gonna happen dynamic that has prevailed upon our need for love and romance on the diamond. And this October fortnight has been swoon worthy:  In the span of a week’s time, the MLB saw not one, not two but three one-hundred win juggernauts go by the wayside: You could almost understand the 101 win Mets going belly up since it’s become their fall standard ever since Mike Piazza left the building. But then the Braves got outfeisted (my word) by the Phillies in an accidental prize fight that went Balboa in a hurry.

Surely the Dodgers would hold strong against the National League’s barbarians best efforts to tear down the gates. Hell, not even Poe could kill the corporate beast from Chavez Ravine. And the Padres really didn’t feel like the team that was gonna do the slaying, in spite of their drinking game deadline deals for the two Joshes, Bell and Hader, along with the sweet swinging Juan Soto. And did I mention the Dodgers went 14-5 against their neighbors to the south during the regular season? As Sam Rothstein woulda said, There’s nuttin to see heah. 

Umm . . . . Sam?

Padres 5- Dodgers 3 FINAL

I woke up to that because I have the Padres in my notifications, like a side thing. My main men still reside in the Bronx, and they still have life thanks to Gerrit Cole’s balls to the wall seven inning samurai special in Cleveland that sends the divisional series to the fifteenth round tonight. Baseball royalty was my family seal, having been born in the Bronx and raised by a woman who used to talk shop with the likes of Mantle and Berra and Houk. But let’s face it, for the vast majority of baseball citizenry, rooting for the Yankees is akin to hoping Brad Pitt gets laid. It’s like being cool with Bill Gates winning Powerball. And I completely understand.

The Astros are baseball’s version of the smartest kid in class who decides to cheat on his SAT’s. It’s a damn shame their sign stealing went all fetishy because they have been Scarlett Lettered ever since. Nobody outside of Houston is going to love an October that ends with these guys on top and you know how I know this? Because most baseball Americans would gladly root for the Yankees to take them out.

That’s just sad.

It’s probably why I have such an affinity for the NLCS pairing. San Diego bills itself as “America’s Finest City” while Philadelphia . . . does not. And I think it’s adorable how both fan bases have a bit of an inferiority complex even if they would never admit as much. And it doesn’t hurt one Manny Mota of an iota that neither of these clubs was supposed to be here and yet, here they are.

That’s baseball theater at high tide right there. While most sports have to be broken down to their simplest elements, baseball is already there. It’s a game where the pitcher tells the ball what to do and the batter tries to talk that ball into doing something else entirely. It’s a game of hunches and hot streaks and quirks and yes, magic. That too.

I mean, if Bob Stanley or Calvin Schiraldi could’ve gotten any-fucking-body out on a crisp October night in Queens, Sawx fans wouldn’t have had to wait another eighteen years before the curse of the Bambino was lifted across town in the Bronx. And if Joe Carter’s wrists would’ve been a tick slower, the Phillies get to a game seven with Schilling in Toronto and I really would’ve loved their chances in that one. And if Johnny Damon doesn’t take third against the Phillies in 2009, maybe the Yankees World Series drought would be (Yikes!) twenty-two years instead of thirteen.

I watched the highlights of that Padres clincher against the Dodgers a couple times; once for the game highlights and once just to take in that magnificent engine of a crowd in full throttle. That sea of misbegotten browns and yellows that spun its mad rebellion as their princes slayed kings. And if you listened closely enough, you could almost hear them questioning all the answers.

Why not us?

 

The Rundown

A man carries a dog he recovered in hopes of reuniting it with its owners, two days after the passage of Hurricane Ian, in Fort Myers Beach, Fla., Friday, Sept. 30, 2022.

The Rundown is going the USA Today route this week with quick bite news grabs that will go lightly on the scroll whilst giving you enough nutritional value to get you through your day. I was feeling rather kitschy after talking with someone about the old newspaper dispensers that used to dot the landscape back in the day before the internets made ’em heap-worthy. The USA Today newspaper dispensers were space aged oddities when they came on the scene in the early eighties but now I found myself missing them. So here’s a tip of my (front facing) cap to the not so gray lady.

Let’s roll . . .

When this Friday jaunt was called Heroes of the Week, I’d make a habit of featuring those stories that got us all caught up in the feels. So Imma start off this episode with a look back at the heroes of Hurricane Ian. The above capture shows Eduardo Tocuya rescuing a four-legged friend from the devastation. Tocuya’s heroism was part of a broad sweep of humanitarian efforts across the state as people came together to pick up the pieces of all that was lost.

Florida man rescues frightened feline from Hurricane Ian's powerful surge | TAG24

Man saved cats too. Mike Ross braved those storm waters to make sure this feline gets to live every one of its nine lives. Scores of pets were rescued in the aftermath of Ian and dozens of agencies stepped up to find the owners of the displaced pets or failing that, make sure they were placed in a forever home.

Florida Reporter Saves Nurse Trapped in Car During Hurricane Ian

Tony Welsh is a reporter for WESH 2 News in Orlando, Florida and that’s him carrying a woman to safety after he spotted her in the flood waters. The woman is a nurse who was attempting to get to work and got stuck. Welsh made certain she wouldn’t be a casualty.

Florida Reporter Saves Nurse Trapped in Car During Hurricane Ian

A group of fellas who call themselves the Collier County Cowboys rescued an elderly man whose vehicle was being swept under by the floodwaters. Their Instagram page describes them as “Just 5 cowboys who are going through a phase”. and I’m plenty certain that Superman would approve of their exploits.

Making Putin Pay | Foreign Affairs

President Biden and world leaders from across the globe can agree on one thing this morning: Vladimir Putin is a madman who doesn’t give a fig about anything or anyone but his crazy ass megalomaniacal self. The Russian strongman has crossed more lines than a marathon runner; from his frightening takeover of a nuclear reactor site to his slaughtering of innocents. Plato said you could measure a man’s worth based on what he does with the power he possesses. Putin is a dollar store personality with weapons of mass destruction at the ready and to that end, we should all be on edge.

Prime Day Falls Flat, Black Friday in October Again, Who Cares? - Mish Talk - Global Economic Trend Analysis

With the backlog of inventory putting a big hurt on retailers both large and small, bargain shoppers didn’t have to wait till the last week of November to get their savings on this year. Amazon has been offering a second Prime Days extravaganza in an attempt to jump start lagging sales and everybody else has been following suit; from brick and mortars to boutiques to big box stores, the big push to unload more than three quarters of a trillion dollars in inventory has been going on for months now. And if you still haven’t taken advantage, no worries because there’s plenty more where that came from.

Halloween Ends (2022) - IMDb

Halloween Ends drops today in theaters and on Peacock and I’m thanking Beelzebub for that, because the franchise has to go away for a while. The first installment on the reboots was popcorn slasher flick kitschy and I scored it a win. Halloween Kills was hot garbage nonsense. So now comes the finale and Imma be watching with more trepidation than a drunk teenager who just lost his virginity on a Halloween night in Haddonfield.

Xbox Unveils New Mini Fridge, And It's Cheaper Than The Old One - Xbox News

Ukraine’s teenagers are making like ninjas trained by Mr. Miyagi and they’re showing the world that when they dig down deep, they’ve got plenty of ups. It speaks to desperation, hunger and tenacity borne of living under the specter of an iron boot. America’s teenagers are buying the Xbox mini-fridge for a cool hundo so’s they can game for half a day at a time. If you’re doing the math at home, you understand it’s not the same thing. At all.

Commanders vs Bears | Odds, Predictions for Thursday Night Football

If you gave me the option of being water boarded or having to watch last night’s game between the Washington Commanders and Chicago Bears? I would have been pre-treating my mane with some conditioner before the sharp suits led me into the enhanced interrogation lab for processing.

For families of Parkland shooting victims, awful truth came after hours of waiting – Sun Sentinel

I refuse to write the name of the murderer who took the lives of seventeen people at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, and I won’t paste his image up here either. Instead, I choose to post the faces of all those souls whose tomorrows got lost to the madness. A Florida jury recommended a life sentence without the possibility of parole for the killer yesterday and the decision was met with disbelief and anger by the families of these victims who were pushing for the death penalty in the case.  And while I have moved away from the idea that capital punishment is ever the answer, I won’t disagree with these people. They’ve been through enough.

Pope Francis to canonize 'father of migrants' a saint | The Hill

I’m not gonna lie, I saw a headline from the online publication The Week that read “Pope Francis’ big gamble on ‘sydonality’ and I felt more lost than Marjorie Taylor Greene at a Mensa convention.

Elon Musk denies report that he talked to Putin about Ukraine war

Elon Musk is proposing a Ukraine peace plan this week. This is hard on the heels of President Trump offering his services as an intermediary for the two countries last week. Remember the good old days when celebrities aspired to be the center square on Peter Marshall’s game show? As it is, I can only assume Kanye West is taking his place in the on-deck circle.