Thursday, July 31, 2008

Happy Trails, Manny!

Ah, man. I can't believe he's gone. Who, you ask? This guy.

He could be a pain in the butt but damn, could he hit. And he was far and away the most entertaining figure in New England sports over the past decade, possibly ever.

I know why the Sox pulled the trigger but man, I'm gonna miss him. And I''m not alone. It just won't be the same without you, Manny. Thanks for the memories.

Good News / Bad News

It's all just news. Although it's really different depending on whether you're reading The New York Times or The Washington Post.

Here's what the paper of Woodward and Bernstein has to say about our economy. It's good news! (With a small caveat at the end.)

And here's what The Old Gray Lady has to say. It's bad news!

So is the glass half full or half empty? Depends on you, I guess. Am I a half-full or half-empty guy? Neither. I see a 12 oz. glass with 6 oz. of liquid in it.

Once you dig into the actual articles they give you pretty much the same figures and outlook. The Post's article is almost as glum as the Times' once you get inside it. But the headlines are telling. And many many people do not read beyond them.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Dumb Letters: The Gay Agenda

Okay, here's one from today's Boston Globe.

ENOUGH ALREADY with the Globe's gay agenda. How many front-page stories do we have to see to know that your agenda is to promote the gay/lesbian lifestyle? The July 21 article "Bloom's off the brick row house: Buyers picking modern high-rise over classic style" could and should have been written from the heterosexual perspective. What you're writing about is not a gay issue, it's a human issue, and casting the story in a manner to feature gays is inappropriate. It's time to straighten out, and I mean that in all senses of the word.


Wow, says I. That must be some article. I'd better follow the link to see all the salacious homosexual details. Go ahead, follow the link and see for yourself. I'll wait.

Okay, you don't have to. Here is the only (and I mean it, ONLY) mention of anything vaguely homosexual in the article.

"In June, Moore, a computer programmer, and his partner, Michael Olinger, a flight attendant, purchased a one-bedroom in a new midrise building..."

That's it. This is a 1,143-word article about the modern real estate market in Boston. All it says it that he has a partner who happens to be male. Actually, it doesn't even say he's male. There are female Michaels. At least two. And anyway, the article doesn't call attention to this. It doesn't "promote" anything. It doesn't say "his very homosexual partner, Michael Olinger, who is just FAB-ulous and can be seen daily in the window of their new apartment singing show tunes and reaming Mr. Moore up the butt in full view of all the impressionable children in the neighborhood (a practice that the Globe heartily endorses, by the way)..."

No, Mr. Einreinhofer feels that this article about real estate should have been written from a "heterosexual perspective". Because the first thing I think about when shopping for an apartment is just how amenable the new apartment is to all of the heterosexual sex I'll be having. And that's what the Globe's readership wants to know about too.

Dumb Letters: An Introduction

I read the news. A lot. I scour the internet for news and opinion (both are important, I think) from many sources. Although some would say I only get them from "liberal" sources. Anyway, there are four newspapers that I read online every day, including the Op-Ed sections and their associated letters. These papers are The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, The Washington Post and The Boston Globe. I also read various other publications, online and in print, like Salon, Slate, The New Yorker, Newsweek and The Nation.

And by the way, anyone who says I only read liberal publications should check out some of the above papers for flaming lefties like George Will, Bob Novak, Charles Krauthammer, William Kristol, Jeff Jacoby, Max Boot and Jonah Goldberg. And they even let Karl Rove write in Newsweek now, for Pete's sake. Karl Rove!

So I enjoy reading the op-ed pieces and agreeing or disagreeing with the writers and occasionally thinking about something in a new way. But the real fun is reading the Letters sections of the major newspapers. Now the Letters section of your average smalltown paper is always full of, shall we say, folksy charm. But I always love when the big ones print letters from complete wackadoos. And I don't just mean conservative. Being conservative is not a crime. Being an idiot is. I know many conservatives with whom I disagree but who are also intelligent, coherent and occasionally even cogent.

The real fun is when I see a letter from somebody that just hasn't thought things through. I know that papers take certain things into consideration when they publish a letter, such as a representative sample of the opinions in their mailbag. But sometimes I stop and think, "They just published this because it's so ridiculous. They must have had some letter writer who was somewhat articulate make a similar point. They just want everyone to know that Arlo Finklestein of Woonsocket is a complete idiot." I am convinced of this.

So I thought I'd make it a regular feature to highlight some of these dumb letters and grouse about them. Okay by you? Cool.

So this one is from today's LA Times. Not howlingly stupid but a bit silly nevertheless. The writer is responding to a story about Barack Obama's European Vacation.

Considering Obama's enthusiastic greeting and speech in Berlin, has anyone reminded him that he has not yet been elected or inaugurated president?

For a reality check, he should visit the Thomas E. Dewey and Michael S. Dukakis presidential libraries on his return trip to the U.S.

Peter M. Small
Lake Forest

So, the point is that Obama will somehow think that he's already the president because some people in Germany like him? Is that all it takes? Somebody please get on the horn with BO toot sweet. I hear he's been signing executive orders and giving State of the Union speeches. He's even started ordering secret wiretaps and torture. (Well, the secret wiretaps, anyway.) All he did was give a freaking speech in Germany. Did that speech include the words "I am President of the United States of America"?

Hey, I just played a show to 100 people who all applauded. Guess what? I'm now asking for royalties on Coldplay's newest album and playing the Garden this week with REM opening for me. Somebody give me a reality check! No, wait. I'd prefer the royalty check.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Welcome, Web People

Welcome to what? The hell if I know. I'm not sure why anyone would give a crap about my life and it always seemed a bit narcissistic (not to mention exhibitionist) to write about it for all to see. So no daily doses of the arcana of me.

So here's the deal. This spot will be where I write about whatever's on my mind. Could be about the news. Could be about music. Could be about sports. Could be about life in the big city. Sort of a one-man New Yorker. Probably nothing about my job, family or personal neuroses. (Sorry.) Although I may change my mind later. We'll see how it goes. Feel free to let me know just how much I suck.