Here..We…Go

On my mark ladies and gents,

I am going back into the abyss and seeking some truth.   In all actuality, I am here to spin the news again.   I told you I would be back and I am a man of my word.  Follow if you can.

The Cards plain suck.   After coming from behind twice in a row to register a couple wins against the Pirates at home and inject some spice into the final days of this club, they get shut out today with their best arm, Chris Carpenter on the mound.  Any time a team loses 7-0 at home with their best out there, it’s bad news.   This team continues to frustrate and the worst thing is there is still 28 games to go before they stop.  For a Cards fan who continues to bleed with them, it’s the opposite of paradise.  It’s absolutely horrific to watch this team crash and burn.   The full on quick Cards rant begins now.

Good teams don’t lose to broken down shit teams like the Pirates 7-0 with a pitching matchup of Chris Carpenter and Blake Carroll(that’s not even his real name).

Good teams don’t hit into 142 double plays. 

Good teams don’t get shut out three times in two weeks.

Good teams don’t feature 3-4-5 hitters that collect 2 hits in 12 at bats.

Good teams don’t feature a bullpen with 23 blown saves.

Good teams don’t have a losing record at home in the second half of a season during a division race.

Good teams don’t lose 3 games started by their best starters(Carp, Garcia) inside a week.

Good teams don’t make so many errors on easy routine plays.

Good teams don’t play their best baseball in May.

The St. Louis Cardinals aren’t good enough for the playoffs.  The real question is…are they good at all?  My answer is no.  They aren’t good this year.  Blame it on injuries and you have a fair case in front of you.  However, watching this team all year, I can tell you their problems go deeper than injuries.  It’s lack of consistent performance.

What else?

The Beaver is a solid film to watch on DVD for a few reasons.   A film about a man suffering through severe mid life depression who heals himself by putting a stuffed animal on his right hand and talking with it using an Australian accent isn’t going to sell tickets in a cinema.  This family drama is meant for the couches at home.   Mel Gibson turns in his best performance in years as Walter, the CEO of a toy company who has hit a brick wall of depression and finds solace in a stuffed beaver who attempts to pull him out of his doldrums.  His wife Meredith, played by director Jodie Foster, is a woman who has signed too many checks Walter can’t cash emotionally.   His son Porter lists 49 reasons on a wall in his room why he is painfully similiar to his dad.  He wants nothing to do with Walter.  His younger son Henry adores him no matter what happens.   Porter has a crush on Norah(Jennifer Lawrence), an ace student who needs help writing her valadictorian speech but only wants to get to know Porter.  She is one of those A students who is tragically empty inside.  This is a bizarre film, but it succeeds because it’s about real people and centers itself around a real disease, depression.   There are no easy gimmicks or humor copouts here.  Foster throws the camera at Gibson and reveals a broken soul and a wonderfully gifted actor sitting behind it.   Throughout his legal and personal troubles, Gibson’s true talent has been forgotten.  This is a mistake.  The man can act and has plenty of ammo left.  He brings you into Walter’s dilemma, which starts out as an omen yet turns into a curse that forces him to make a horrible decision.   It’s a film about family and the slow healing of a broken home.  A powerful tale if you get past the talking beaver sitting on a man’s hand throughout the movie.  See it as a metaphor and all is well.  The Beaver is worth getting lost in it’s wild structure because at the heart is a real life story. 

Justin Verlander has 20 wins before September 1st and is a strong candidate for MVP of the American League.   Aside from owning 1 no hitter and 2 near no hitters(8th inning breakups), Verlander is 20-5 with a 2.61 ERA, striking out 218 against 48 walks in 215 innings.   Folks, it is August 28th and this man has stats good enough for a Cy Young award winning season.   He has 5 more starts to go.  In his last 10 starts, Verlander is 9-1 with a 2.67 ERA.   His pitching is ridiculous and this comes with his Detroit Tigers in the middle of a playoff hunt.  Impressive doesn’t begin to describe this man’s naughty pitching.   Serious MVP caliber work.

While earthquakes and hurricanes are bad for any city, remember folks the entire town of Joplin, Missouri was taken out by a tornado in less than 20 minutes.   A reminder to people crying horror over the devastation on the East Coast.   Tragic but nothing compared to Joplin.   A weak hurricane and earthquake don’t measure up to a powerful tornado.  

George W. Bush wants to talk about 9/11.  Get real George.   There was a translator involved to properly allow Bush’s mangled english to come through with clarity but it doesn’t matter.  Look, I don’t like the guy because he was an unfortunate soul who never should of graduated college, didn’t deserve to Governor or President and rode the coattails of his daddy to everything he received and broke important things.  After seeing 4,000 people die in 9/11, he sent into various wars that saw 4,000 more US soldiers die.   That came before Obama got into office ladies and gents.  George W. Bush did little for this country but drown it in debt that our current President has only added to.   If you think Obama is a joke, Bush ranks much lower.  Sum up his presidency and all you have to do is see the look on his face when the secret service agent leaned down to tell him his country was under attack. Please save your praise for him opening Guantamamo Bay.  It’s good our crooked President opened a place for the terrorists he shared secret relations with.  The Bush Family’s connection with the Bin Laden’s never dies folks if you read between the lines.  Bush supporters don’t get one step in my book.  I didn’t mention his 9/11 special was originally supposed to air on Comedy Central.

One of my hopes.  Jason Statham running into the Situation of Jersey Shore on an airplane and creating a situation on board by kicking the shit out of him and mangling his face.   I’d read that story.

Matt Damon’s main goal in charity work is to get countries without water a clean supply of it.   What’s wrong with that?  Many people attack celebrities for using their massive wealth for the right reasons.  Why?  Damon flies around the country delivering water and creating pipelines for water into countries with his free time between making good movies.  He’s a renegade.  Like them or not, celebs get things done faster than regular politicians.

-In the future, the most expensive natural resource will be clean water. 

Johnny Depp’s second trip into the mind of mad hatter Hunter S. Thompson, The Rum Diary, hits screens this October and promises to be another gonzo crazy experience.  Depp plays a journalist encountering booze, drugs and nasty people in Puerto Rico, trying to deliver a story about a corrupt politician before he loses his head and mind.  Depp is a gifted actor because he tackles ANY role head on and immerses himself in the life of his character without changing his look.  He is one of the few actors who can play a character looking as clean cut as in real life and still deliver a performance.  Hunter S. Thompson, the famous writer and Depp were friends in real life and Depp played him in Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, an acquired taste of a film that featured some of Depp’s wildest work.   Here, he dives into Hunter’s mind again.   Bizarre doesn’t begin to explain the events in this film but the trailer promises raw fun all based off the sole power of Depp’s infinite ability to get into character so easily.  Depp has called the film “a special little film” and wanted to go around to different colleges talking about Thompson’s writing.  It’s a testament to his reach as an actor.  Here is the trailer.  This film looks like a good time and a fine way to spend 2 hours.

http://youtu.be/0YUx36yLLug

Watch The Town on HBO if you have the chance.   Ben Affleck’s ode to bank robbers in Charlestown, Ma goes deep into the rich history of cop/robbers classics.   If you compare Ben to a baseball player, he is 2-2 in the director’s chair.   His followup to the wonderful mystery Gone, Baby, Gone centers on Doug MacRay and his gang of bank robbers being chased by FBI agents in Boston that’s triggered when the group takes a female hostage in a heist.  MacRay follows and starts to fall for the woman and it unravels a course of events that thrills and creates tense drama at the same time.   Affleck thrives in the lead role and Jeremy Renner excels as the hot headed partner in crime.   The real treat of the film is seeing Mad Man Jon Hamm go against type as a raging FBI crime fighter who will do anything to nail this group of lawbreakers.   An epic heartfelt action drama.   The greatness of the film is the way Affleck refused to stamp characters with good or bad guy labels.   Everybody did what they had to for a reason.   MacRay was born into robbing banks and wanted out.   Renner’s character was a loose cannon but his loyalty to Affleck and saving his life made him a regular guy doing the only thing he knew how to do.   Hamm was a crime fighter, but a conflicted rule bending badass who wasn’t the good shiny hero in the end.    There are no good and bad guys in life.  Just people making choices.  I loved that about the film.  Watch it on cable or rent it.  This is Heat(The Younger Years).

People can’t walk properly.  The best way to deal with it is to adopt the path of a running back and quickly move through this packs of jackoffs.   They will never speed up and if it comes to it, engage them in a fight or war of words on walking properly.   I bet money that these people walk the same way they drive. 

-A friend recently said this year for the Cards was the most he has been down on this team in a while.  I disagree.   Last year was a bigtime downer, because we swept Cincy in August and seemed poised to run awaywith the division and all of a sudden collapsed.   Following a season where we didn’t notch aplayoff win against the same Dodgers team, that was painful.  The fateful road trip through Pittsburgh,Washington and Chicago that sealed our fate. After beating the Cubs at home after the huge Reds sweep(a Westbrook guided 6-3 win), we were 16 games over .500 and ready to take off.  Instead, we crashed and didn’t wake up until after the magic numbers was 0 for Walt’s Reds. That was painful.   This season was hard but a struggle from the outset.
This team was picked to finish 4th and may finish 2nd.   They were who we thought they were and we let them off the hook until they broke our hearts.  However, after the brutal loss of Waino, the
chances of winning the division were reduced drastically.  This year was tough but doesn’t rank as the lowest I have been on this team.

Another point made recently that can stand up in logic court yet I disagree with.  The idea that if Tony La Russa goes after the season, Albert Pujols follows.  Look, it all comes down to Albert wanting to stay or not.   He wanted to be a Card for life and wanted to end his career here.  He wants a competitive team around him.   If the Cards make him a great offer and he
turns it down, he can walk too.  The one thing Albert says about the contract situation being out of his hands is pure bullshit.  He has COMPLETE control over it.  Dan Loranzo is there to figure out
the numbers and years.  He is the suit.  Albert makes the choice where he plays baseball.   See an offer and take it.  Do you have to make the most fuckingmoney in the league?  Really!!!!  Fuck it.
Be a man and get what you need and set your life up here.
  End of Pujols/Cards rant.

While the Cards find themselves out of the race, I find myself rooting for the San Francisco Giants.  This could be for a number of reasons.   Their lack of hitting makes them close game nail biters.   A roster of self less role players like Cody Ross, Aubrey Huff, Aaron Rowand and Andre Torres.  The charismatic closer Brian Wilson and his stories.  Bruce Bochy’s steady management.   Their pitching powered success.  When they won it last year, it came out of nowhere and reminded me of the Cards winning it in 2006 when NO ONE thought they could beat the Mets.   The Giants upset the Phillies and ran over the Rangers.   The Giants are full of good stories.  I’m rooting for them to win it all again.

Good thing the Colts signed Kerry Collins to a 2 year deal.  If Peyton Manning can’t play in Week 1 and/or 2, I need someone reliable throwing passes to three guys on my fantasy team.  Reggie Wayne, Pierre Garcon and Dallas Clark.   Yahoo Fantasy Football is one league I do participate in annually.  Collins isn’t as efficient as Manning, but he gets the job done and moves the football.  In 10 games last year filling in for Vince Young in Tennessee, Collins threw for 1823 yards, 14 touchdowns with only 8 interceptions.   Good enough to get me points until Peyton returns firing bullets.

NFL Football starts its season on September 11th, 2011.   A perfect day for America’s sport to kickoff a season.  On America’s tragic yet heroic day, our passion begins.  Lazy football Sunday’s are almost back.

A sad little fact found on The Discovery Channel’s documentary series, Rise Of Tower One.   A retired firefighter who lost his son in the attacks, talking about what happened that day.  He opened a small memorial across the street for people who died on 9/11.   A story he heard about that day was when the firefighters were going up the stairwell looking for rescue, the civilians going down were crying as they watched the firefighters pass them, and some even urged them to stop and turn around.   The firefighters, including the man’s son, resisted the advice and kept going up looking for human life.  That’s firefighters in a nutshell for you.  When urged to turn back, they keep going.  A lot of men and women knew they were going to die that day.   That can’t be forgotten.  NYC Mayor Mike Bloomberg needs to remember that for the 10 year memorial service at Ground Zero.

That’s all I have tonight folks.   The morning has begun and I am ready to lay down and call it a day.  From 9am to 2am the following morning, I got things done.   Breakfast with the family, errands, coffee, house cleaning, relaxing, a night with friends, shaving the head and writing two blogs.  Honest fact.  After I send out a blog and shave my head, I’m in a much better mood.  It’s an act where I literally clear my head, mentally and physically. 

Thanks for reading and goodnight,

DLB

Also..my son may be born at any moment from now on.   Be ready for that blog post.  This process will be documented.  That’s all for now.  I’ll be back.

 


 

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Author: D. Buffa

A regular guy who feels a journalistic hunger to tell the news. I blog because its wired into my brain to write what I think in print. I offer an opinion. A solo tour here. Take regular stories and offer my spin on them. Sports, film, television, music, fatherhood, culture, food, and so on. Commentary on everything. A St. Louis native and Little Rock resident who wants to write just to keep the hands fresh and ready.

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