Monthly Archives: November 2006

James Taylor honored

Last night I caught part of “A Tribute to James Taylor” on PBS’s Great Performances. The performers and their renderings were a mixed bag. Taylor played a few tunes at the end and, as anyone who’s seen him would predict, stole the show.

I liked Bonnie Raitt’s version of “Rainy Day Man” and Alison Krauss’ “Going to Carolina”. Keith Urban proved (to me) that he’s more than just a pretty rock-n-roll wannabe with his rendition of “Country Road”. Sting was overmatched in his attempt to cover the complex “Close Your Eyes”, but it was a fine choice of a relatively obscure Taylor tune. Bruce Springsteen’s offering of “Millworker” was powerful and another brilliant choice of Taylor’s little known material. It was a nice show but would have been exponentially better if they’d just shown a JT concert.

James Taylor is one of handful of artists that can claim complete mastery of all aspects of his craft; singing, playing, and writing. He’s also a stellar live performer. Of the three finest concerts I’ve attended over 30 years, two of them were Taylor’s. If you haven’t seen JT, you owe it to yourself to do it, especially if it’s at Mud Island (Memphis) in the rain.


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Filed under Celebrities, Music

Crimson Tide’s coaching carousel

The circus that is Alabama football is once again a source of amusement, or embarrassment, depending on your point of view. You know the numbers. ‘Bama is on its eighth coach in the past 25 years, its fifth since 2000. It’s just ridiculous.

Coach Mike Shula, brought in to restore credibility and stability to the mess in Tuscaloosa, was unceremoniously dismissed under the cover of darkness, just a few hours shy of midnight last Sunday. It was gutless and shameful, words that haven’t, until now, been associated with Alabama football. Well, shameful maybe, but not gutless. ‘Atta good ole boy, Mal Moore.

So who’s next? The faithful, tripping on crimson-sunshine, foresee Steve Spurrier or Nick Saban riding to the rescue and righting the again-teetering ship. That’s not going to happen though. In fact, it’s a safe bet that the new coach will be someone whose name most don’t recognize.

Will the new man win? Who knows? Mike Shula has left him loaded with talented sophomores and redshirt-freshmen. Another top-10 class was poised to sign with the Tide and Shula next year, but all bets are off now.

At any rate, he’ll have four years to bring the national championship back to Alabama. Won’t happen though, unless he’s the Chosen One. Smart money says ‘Bama winds up on probation again before they play for another title.


Filed under Sports

“And that’s the way it is”

Click over to Doug’s Darkworld and read his entertaining but bleak assessment of some of what’s going on in the world. I’m a regular reader now. If you’re not an ideologue you’ll enjoy his writing.

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Filed under Military, News, Politics, Terrorism, Blogs, Writing

Censorship 101: Polonium 210

If you need to shut somebody up, and duct tape is too short-term, consider Polonium 210. What is Polonium 210? Click over to A Quantum Diaries Survivor for the nasty facts.


Filed under News, Politics, Science, Blogs

Michael Richards works the apology circuit

On the evening news I saw Michael Richards apologizing, yet again, this time on Jesse Jackson’s radio program. It called to mind the following not-very-amusing, but perhaps instructive story.

Once there were two psychiatrist, one short and one tall, who daily shared an elevator up to their offices. Everyday, as the doors opened and the short psychiatrist prepared to disembark, he turned to the tall one and spit on him. This went on, day in and day out, for years.

On his last day prior to retirement, the elevator attendant who’d witnessed this ritual countless times was overcome with curiosity. “Sir”, he asked the tall psychiatrist, “why does that little man spit on you everyday, and why don’t you do something about it?”

The tall psychiatrist, without looking at the attendant, replied as if annoyed, “How should I know? It’s his problem“.

Anyway, …


Filed under Celebrities, News

Chuck Hagel on Iraq

As a matter of policy, I don’t link to online newspapers. Those links turn to broken links, usually in about two weeks. Nevertheless, I’ve made an exception. Go forth and read Senator Chuck Hagel’s (R – Nebraska) letter to WAPO.

Could Chuck be presidential timber?

(Hat-tip to The Lady Speaks)


Filed under Military, News, Politics, Terrorism, Blogs

Alabama media fixated on Mike Shula

Alabama’s sports media is fixated on Mike Shula. Sports, page one, in today’s Mobile Press Register featured one story about Shula’s buyout clause, and another screed by flaccid Paul Finebaum.

The rag did note that embattled Miami Hurricane coach Larry Coker had been canned. It didn’t mention, however, that this is potentially the biggest football story in the state, in as much as Auburn coach Tommy Tuberville might figure prominently in Miami’s coaching search.

Tuberville spent nearly a decade as an assistant at Miami. He’s also much higher profile than any of the candidates for the Miami job mentioned in the Press Register article. That’s not to say he’s a candidate. I don’t know. I would think, short of a Spurrier, Tressel, or Carroll, Tuberville would be on any short-list of schools serious about winning. (Of course Tressel and Carroll aren’t going anywhere. They areĀ  benchmarks.) Auburn, while a great job, isn’t Miami. There’s more football talent coming out of south Florida than anywhere else in the country.

Nary a word about the Miami-Tuberville connection in the Mobile paper though. The semi-literate writers working there are on jihad against Alabama coach Mike Shula, and when you’re at war, little things like the status of the coach of the state’s premier college football team aren’t on your radar.

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Filed under Sports