Blog on the Run: Reloaded

Tuesday, March 9, 2004 9:03 pm

What you YOU learned today?

Filed under: Fun — Lex @ 9:03 pm

I’ve never watched SouthPark, which probably makes me … well, old, I guess. But I have stumbled upon the show’s lessons, and I must say they appear comprehensive.

Lost Tuesday

Filed under: Housekeeping — Lex @ 8:48 pm

Stomach started feeling a little weird last night. I got Hooper fed (Ann and V. were at the women’s ACC final), then decided supper was probably going to be pointless and/or Sisyphean, so I skipped it and went to bed. Hooper got in bed with me.

I ended up awake most of the night. Spent much of today in bed. Didn’t feel like eating anything again until close to 6 p.m. Now stomach feels OK, but flu-like symptoms persist. Got to go to work tomorrow, however. Much to do.

Monday, March 8, 2004 11:12 am

Treacherous

Filed under: Weird — Lex @ 11:12 am

Remember how I mentioned that it’s often hard to tell around here where the line between winter and spring falls? Well, we’re getting more snow tomorrow.

Sunday, March 7, 2004 9:04 pm

The things that matter most

Filed under: Fun,Victoria — Lex @ 9:04 pm

For the third straight year, I took Victoria to the semifinals of the ACC women’s basketball tournament today. In year 1, she was all about the game; even today, she sometimes pretends to be UVa’s Anna Crosswhite when she shoots hoops out back. Last year, she and her friend A. focused on the Duke cheerleaders.

And this year? Well …

“Daddy! What happened?”

“Carolina scored, sweetie. They’re winning 19 to 12.”

“No, Daddy! I mean the mascots KISSED! What’s THAT all about??”

Saturday, March 6, 2004 11:17 pm

Duke 70, Carolina 65

Filed under: Fun — Lex @ 11:17 pm

Damn. But it was a great game. Not one of the greatest, not as good as the one earlier this season in Chapel Hill, but a great game nonetheless.

As always, I pulled for Carolina and Ann pulled for Duke. Upon learning before the game started that that’s how it would be, Victoria asked, in all seriousness, “How can two people be married if they pull for different teams?”

Friday, March 5, 2004 10:40 pm

Subtitles

Filed under: Fun,Religion — Lex @ 10:40 pm

If you’re going to see “The Passion of the Christ” anytime soon, you need to know that most of the film’s dialogue is spoken either in Aramaic or in Latin. To help you get in the spirit, here are some Aramaic translations of things you might need to say at the theater. My favorite: Ktaabaa taab hwaa meneyh. (“It’s not as good as the book.”)

Performance enhancement

Filed under: Salute! — Lex @ 10:39 pm

I know flipall about mountain climbing other than that you can pretty much drive to the top of Mount Mitchell even with a dying constant-velocity joint (Tony remembers, don’t you, Tony?), but I figure there’s gotta be an outdoor gear store called The North Face for a reason. The reason, apparently, is that Mount Everest’s north face is a bad*ss climb and no one has ever gone straight up the middle of it, but a Russian mountain climbing Dream Team has begun the climb. At a news conference in February, the team members said they might or might not use oxygen and said they’d forgo any performance-enhancing substance except vodka.

Cool.

Roar of the tiger

Filed under: Tigers — Lex @ 8:25 pm

Victoria’s soccer team, the Tigers, opened their spring season with a resounding 6-3 win over the Ladybugs. (The actual opening game was supposed to have been last Saturday, but it got snowed out.)

The Tigers all appeared to have grown over the winter (Victoria now might or might not be the smallest team member), but they also seemed a little rusty in their dribbling, shooting and ballhawking instincts. That, combined with the opponents’ skill, made it a closer game than the score would indicate.

V’s skills appeared to have atrophied over the winter even more than her teammates’ — she didn’t make any major mistakes, but neither was she executing the kind of crisp passes and quick defensive moves she had learned by the end of the fall season. Early in the second quarter, another player stepped down hard on her right foot (accidentally), and her speed suffered for the rest of the game, although her attitude did not.

It poured all morning and past noon, but by the 3 p.m. game time, the sun was out. The field was in excellent shape — those Bryan Park upper fields drain very nicely. It was very windy, and Hooper got a little chilly on the sideline, but I thought it was a nearly perfect day for a win.

“My people aren’t too happy, but they believe.”

Filed under: Fun — Lex @ 6:44 pm

The Petulant Princess discovers the video game Black and White:

Dan got a new game called black and white that lets you play god. You get followers to build temples for you, and you can either help or harm them. As soon as my diabolical little fingers touched the mouse I thought “wouldn’t it be funny if…” and started flinging people off cliffs and such. My people aren’t too happy, but they believe. I had a running soundtrack going too…it was great fun, sitting at the computer…”You have angered me! I shall tosseth thee into the side of the cliff! God has spoken and She is pissed!” etc. The game has this whisper in the background that says “death….” if you’re really being a mean God. It’s hilarious. Of course I’ll restart the game and be a nice god eventually, but I have to have my demonic fun first.

I’d like to think I’d be a nice god. But I’d probably first have to tosseth some spammers into the side of the cliff.

We’re a happenin’ place

Filed under: Housekeeping — Lex @ 1:01 pm

This site not only set an attendance record Thursday, it bested the old record by about 50%. Even after looking at the details of the visits, I have no explanation. No one site or search was steering all that traffic here. But, hey, a record’s a record. Woot!

One other housekeeping note: I’ve toyed with the template (quite a bit, actually) to try to get a bit more air between the posts so that, among other things, you can always be sure which permalink goes with which post. ‘Cause I know y’all are all about linking to me like that. It’s almost, but not quite, looking good, and any suggestions you have would be greatly appreciated. (Ed Cone is right — content is hard — but learning CSS on the fly is even harder.)

More on black-box voting

Filed under: Black-box voting — Lex @ 12:58 pm

Jake Tapper, ex-Salon and now with ABC, has a very nice piece up on the issue. A few minor factual errors (Diebold CEO’s name; “Black Box Voting” is not “self-published”), but overall a good look at the issue.

Thursday, March 4, 2004 5:52 pm

Seen recently on IRC*

Filed under: Fun — Lex @ 5:52 pm

PERSON1: Does anyone know any American Idol fans — specifically anyone who has thoughts on or is rooting for Fantasia Barrino?

PERSON2: My thought is that anyone named Fantasia is probably a stripper.

PERSON3: Uh, nobody I know watches…

PERSON3: But then most people I know have lives …

PERSON2:
What KIND of thoughts, PERSON1?

PERSON3: *snort*

PERSON2: Why, yes, PERSON1, I do … but the doctor says those thoughts are BAD and that I should put them OUT of my MIND or else he’ll have to … punish me.

***PERSON1 signs off.

PERSON3: *snort*

*Internet Relay Chat, almost completely superseded these days by site-specific chat

My next coffeepot …

Filed under: Woohoo! — Lex @ 5:47 pm

… is not going to need an electric plug.

Shrimp rule the world

Filed under: Fun — Lex @ 5:47 pm

And the Apostropher can prove it.

Tuesday, March 2, 2004 6:56 am

Panthers on the prowl

Filed under: Panthers — Lex @ 6:56 am

The NFL free-agent/trade market opens Wednesday, but the Panthers already have made either the most- or second-most-important move of the offseason by re-signing wideout Steve Smith. He got a 5-year deal, with an option for a sixth.

“Deal” might be overstating the case a bit, given the bucks involved — a reported $25 million. And the Panthers don’t have a good history of return on that kind of investment (see: Collins, Kerry; Evans, Doug; Gilbert, Sean; Muhammad, Muhsin). On the other hand, because Smith would have been a restricted free agent, the Panthers would have had to match any other team’s offer to keep him, and that could’ve been even more expensive. Moreover, Smith, personal problems and all, stepped up and performed last year, then took his game up a whole ‘nother notch after December, leading the league in receiving yards in the postseason. He and QB Jake Delhomme appear to be developing the kind of special relationship that eventually could remind us of Montana/Rice.

Speaking of Delhomme, he has a year left on his contract, but I suspect the team would like to re-sign him now, too — not only because he has proved himself a Super Bowl-caliber quarterback but also so as to have a firm handle on the impact of his deal on the salary cap for this season and beyond.

Another big move the Panthers made was re-signing defensive end Al Wallace. Heading into his sixth season, coming off a Super Bowl and a season in which he backed up stars Julius Peppers and Mike Rucker quite capably, he probably could have made better money as a free agent and landed a starting gig besides. But the Panthers persuaded him to sign a 5-year extension, meaning their starting defensive front four — 2002 Rookie of the Year Julius Peppers, 2003 Pro Bowler Kris Jenkins, Brentson Buckner and Rucker — are all under contract through at least 2009 and their top backup is signed through ’08. Given the caliber of that group, Panthers fans have got to feel good about that.

Of somewhat more concern was the deal the Panthers recently gave to kicker John Kasay, both in terms of length and in terms of money (reportedly $4 million/five years).

Now, don’t get me wrong. Kasay is the last original Panther. He won four games for them in 2003 and has won many other games for them over the years. Inside 50 yards he remains among the league’s two or three most accurate field-goal kickers. And he is as deserving as anyone else to have his statue go up alongside Sam Mills’ outside Ericsson Bank of America Stadium. But he will be entering his 14th season, he lost the 2000 season and all but two games of the 2002 season to leg injuries, and his kickoffs have gotten noticeably shorter as the seasons have gone on. I have to wonder whether this wouldn’t have been the appropriate time to thank him for all his hard work and let him become a free agent.

As for the Panthers’ other needs — depth and speed at wideout; depth on the O-line (you can’t bank on your starting five making it through a whole season without missing a start to injury, as the Panthers’ O-line did this year); at least one potential Pro Bowler (besides Ricky Manning Jr.) in the secondary — time will tell. My guess, probably worth what you’re paying for it: They’ll spend really big bucks on a hot cover corner if there’s one to be had; otherwise, they’ll play the waiting game on the free-agent market or scan the post-Round 1 draft prospects.

Monday, March 1, 2004 8:17 pm

For a good time …

Filed under: Fun — Lex @ 8:17 pm

The Triangle (that’s the Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill area, for you folks who ain’t from ’round here) has a 24-hour local cable news operation called News 14. And apparently News14’s reporting system for weather-related closings needs some work:

(Thanks to Shannon.)

The Precious … can be ordered from a catalog, or, Lord of the Tchotchke

Filed under: Fun — Lex @ 8:16 pm

You’re worried about film commercialization? Well, Erin says: Talk to the hand Axe of Gimli!

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