Wednesday, March 28, 2012

In class writing assignment

There I was on a random Tuesday subbing Middle School Language Arts. The assignment was for the students to pic out a picture from some old news magazines and then write a story about it. The idea was that they would be inspired in some manner to write something, anything, about it, no matter the fact or fiction that came out.

In an effort to both manage the class by modeling behavior, and because it was something to do other than just say, "Shhhh," over and over, I grabbed a Newsweek (November 20, 2006), flipped through it, and tore out a picture of Saddam (p.49) from his trial. During Saddam's trial, he was suddenly a very dapper gentleman, full beard grown in, awesome tailored suits, a thoughtful demeanor. He was found guilty and hanged. This is the story I wrote during class over the span of 20 to 30 minutes. I have tried to avoid any corrections or changes whilst typing this up beyond the most basic of grammar issues.


I am not the only one to note this, but I really liked Saddam's suits during his trial. He looked ... dapper. His beard grown in like his contemporary from Mexican beer commercials, "The Most Interesting Man in the World"(TM). It would not have been shocking to have seen THIS Saddam sitting at the same booth.

This was not the man we had ever seen before. Before ... before we had seem him in suits or his military uniform, his suits tailored, but never comfortable looking. His military outfits looking like what imagined him being.

So, for only a moment, let's picture him hanging out in the booth with our TV Commercial Hero. What could Saddam have possibly added to the conversation? He had to have stories to tell, but I cannot possibly imagine that those stories could possibly be ... in the same ballpark as the other stories at the table.

The ladies at the table might have found this gentleman interesting, dapper gentlemen do usually attract a fair share of the opposite sex after all. But, his stories would be about his reign in Iraq, and those would cause the ladies to begin inching away. Perhaps he would be confused by this. After all, in his Iraq he had power, and needed no filter, everyone around him already knew who and what he was. On at least some level those in that circle had to be some sort of fellow traveller, or at least pragmatic and cold enough to go along.

In this picture our TV Commercial Hero would ponder how to handle it. Upon reflection he would have choices; set Saddam off away from the group - gently or otherwise, try and bring up a topic Saddam might be able to redeem himself with, or take over the table with his own stories in to cut the tension. Saddam would probably not leave gently in my picture, although he did go hide in a hole when the US invaded so one never knows. The new topic might help, but he would likely not take kindly to being upstaged if "The Most Interesting Man in the World"(TM) took over the table and basically shut him out and off.

It would actually make for a great TV spot at this point ... Saddam tries to be smooth but the ladies view his story about torturing soccer players to be revolting. "The Most Interesting Man in the World"(TM) ponders, tells a story about his trip through the Middle East providing alms for the poor, making the ladies view his even more favorably and turning further from Saddam. Saddam throws his drink, narrowly missing "The Most Interesting Man in the World"(TM), but "The Most Interesting Man in the World"(TM) catches Saddam's hand and pulls him from the booth, dragging him out of the restaurant and into the street where Saddam is then arrested.

Ladies and gentlemen, "The Most Interesting Man in the World"(TM) ... he captured Saddam, threw him out to the masses ... and Saddam ends up on trial, wearing his dapper clothes again anyways.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Finishing up MLS


There are three Canadian MLS Clubs. I have seen various incarnations of the Vancouver Whitecaps, but not yet the MLS one. Somehow, I have never seen Montreal in Seattle during all those years of the USL Era. This was my first time seeing Toronto FC.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Video for Kirby Krackle

I Wanna Live In A World Full Of Heroes ...

... and so much for my secret identity.

For the record ... Kirby Krackle and Films By Garrett Wesley Gibbons are the copyright holders of this stuff, but as I am in it I can share it like this.

Thursday, March 08, 2012

Quarterfinal Leg One

Seattle Sounders FC 2
Club Santos Laguna 1
March 7, 2012
Seattle, WA - CLink Field
CONCACAF Champions League Quarterfinal First Leg

US based pro clubs beating Mexican clubs is never going to get old and never should be taken for granted.

That is SUPER Cyan to you.

On a cold Wednesday night in early March the attendance figure I read was 23,433. So, Seattle drew more than most of the newer MLS stadiums hold.

This was a good game between two good teams where the stats are really balanced and one team made one more play than the other did. There were stretches where each team clearly was in control and the goals were legit.

The February 7, 2008 posting looking forward to the Champions League format before Seattle had kicked a single ball as an MLS club seemed far fetched at the time ...

Tuesday, March 06, 2012

Marian Call CD Review

Marian Call
Something Fierce (2011)

The other day I was letting this record play in the background while making breakfast. I realized that I was really liking the mood it gave my apartment.

I haven't really reviewed records in a while, although writing reviews was what got me into the world of public writing and led to me being a magazine editor at one point. Back in the day I really wrote reviews that were often press releases more than anything else, so in retrospect many of them make me cringe.

Marian Call added a "Scholarship Program" recently to her website and as a single parent my entertainment budget is minimal so I applied so this is my recipient review as promised in exchange for the download.

My daughter and I went to GeekGirlCon in October of 2011 in Seattle. One of the panelists was Marian Call. Later, she was busking with Molly Lewis outside the con, appearing to have a good time, and my daughter and I listened to a few songs while finishing our lunch. The busking was my first taste of her music.

When I first get a new record I try and just let it play a few times to get the vibe or feel of what the record is about. A good record makes this easy, as I just hit repeat and look forward to it playing. With good records a few songs start to stand out immediately and I start to listen for them to come around again. A good record makes me want to leave the CD in the player for a few days after a first listen. Something Fierce is just such a record.

Good Morning Moon is the opening track. It's ... perky, and a nice start to the record. I am not sure perky is the best description, but hearing it over breakfast caused that word to appear in my mind when thinking about it. Her lyrics are clever and the mood of the music is mellow and fun. She plays with words in ways that I enjoy. I know a "Real Alaskan Girl" and hearing the song I Wish I Were A Real Alaskan Girl had me searching for a Youtube clip of a performance to email the link to her.

Having seen Marian sing briefly in the middle of Seattle Center, I look forward to seeing her perform on an actual stage.

I hope this doesn't sound like too much of a press release, but I really do enjoy this and the record has now remained in the CD rotation atop my entertainment center for several weeks ...

Running 2012

After a brutal winter of difficult running conditions, unhealthy lungs and back pain, and a general lack of motivational consistency I went ahead and took steps recently to get myself back on track, so to speak.

Several years ago I found that by entering the Seattle Marathon several months early it helped me with the lifestyle choice of running and gave my goal oriented approach to life something to focus on.

So, entry number 15 is in and paid for in regards to the 2012 Seattle Marathon. This has immediately got me back out running more often. Of course, it then snowed yesterday and today, which really makes it hard to run safely. I know I could pay the 7 bucks a month and go run upstairs from taekwondo, but I generally loath indoor running on treadmills almost as much as I loath simple track running.

My running goals remain what they once were with a new addition. I still want to reach 26 marathons, run the Boston and New York races, do a Marathon Maniacs cluster, and now also do a resolution run with polar bear plunge one new year in the near future. With the addition of races like the Warrior Dash I think my ongoing goals will help keep me on track.

However, I am now 44 and still in good shape, so even though there was a lame running period this winter in regards to regular running, my general fitness from martial arts will enable me to spend the next 6-8 weeks focusing on short regular runs to get ready for longer training runs in the spring. I am not a kid any more so just jumping right back to real long distances would be stupid. Good habits as weather improves will do more for me than anything else. I just need to do a better job of getting short runs in even with martial arts and weekend shifts.

Kickstarter first project ... Matchmaker

This is the first posting about a possible Kickstarter fundraiser I am considering in order to film a pilot TV show based on my "Matchmaker" script I wrote some years ago.

The project has had several working or variant titles, but is essentially something that I can conceive of working as a sitcom, a romantic comedy, or even as something more serious and dramatic.

So ... I may have more posts about this in coming months as I have started the process and signed up with Kickstarter to go over what I need to do and as I juggled the logistics of the project.

Thursday, March 01, 2012


Jaguares de Chiapas 0
2-29-12 CLink Field Seattle, WA
Community Shield Match

This game had all the makings of a game where the starters play a half, the reserves the second half, and not much in the way of real intensity. Then ... the first half saw the starters play a really disjointed game where they had possession but were constantly missing each other in a chronic way when it came to simple passes. So ... we end up with the starters more or less playing the whole game and looking like a group that might have gotten their asses chewed out at the half. Suddenly, passes and focus seem to be in sync and Montero gives us a nice couple of finishes and everyone feels good. Except, the bench didn't play.