Month: March 2014

A Test, of Sorts

And very possibly true, at that.

Bracketology ….


It is one thing to simply make the joke, but the word seems to be here to stay: Bracketology:

Sports on Earth logoYou’d think re-seeding the field every few days wouldn’t be that challenging, right?

Anything but. With all the games that happen each passing day, they represent an impossible-to-predict, snaking-in-every-direction pattern that in many ways is contradictory. From the 68 teams below, about 80 percent of them have lost at least two of their past five games. But it’s where those losses have come and to whom. Some losses are much more damaging. The seeding this season gets tricky around the 4 line and again in the 10 and 11 area.

In my opinion, it’s much tougher to decipher there than at the cut line.

Yeah. Bracketology. I can only imagine the requisite interdisciplinary lectures on the feng shui of kegs and couches.


Norlander, Matt. “The Science of Bracketology”. Sports on Earth. March 10, 2014.


Sunnie Khale (via WSET)

Let us simply call it by its name—

Sports, sneakers, and short hair; it’s what makes eight year old Sunnie Kahle unique. It’s also what had her removed from Timberlake Christian School. Her grandparents pulled the plug on her time there after they said she was no longer welcome.

The family received a letter telling them that if their eight year old granddaughter didn’t follow the school’s “biblical standards,” that she’d be refused enrollment next year. She’s out and in public school now.

Sunnie Kahle has short hair and a huge heart, and as far as her grandparents are concerned, she is a completely normal little girl.

“She cries every morning to get on the bus, she cries when she comes home because she wants to go back to Timberlake Christian with her friends,” said Doris Thompson.

Doris and Carroll Thompson are Sunnie’s grandparents. They adopted and raised the little girl and took her out of Timberlake Christian School when they received a letter from the school’s K-8 Principal.

“You’re probably aware that Timberlake Christian School is a religious, Bible believing institution providing education in a distinctly Christian environment,” read Doris from a part of the letter.

The letter goes on to say that students have been confused about whether Sunnie is a boy or girl and specifies that administrators can refuse enrollment for condoning sexual immorality, practicing a homosexual lifestyle or alternative gender identity.

The letter goes on to reference specific Bible verses that affirm these beliefs.

The letter reads in part, “We believe that unless Sunnie as well as her family clearly understand that God has made her female and her dress and behavior need to follow suit with her God-ordained identity, that TCS is not the best place for her future education.”




Laurelwood Workhorse IPA

Laurelwood Workhorse IPA labelAh, Laurelwood ….

Simply put, Workhorse IPA is one of the best there is. Hardly for the lightweight, this Portland brew packs a 7.5% ABV, and turns to Citra, Galaxy, El Dorado, and Columbus hops to rouse your soul from its weekday slumber. And while we might note a mix of Great Western 2 Row, Crystal, and Dextrin malts, let’s face it, Workhorse is for hopheads.

It is hardly a shocking mouthfeel; indeed, I would have more to say about the word mouthfeel itself. And, yes, there is a noticeable difference between bottle and tap, greater in the feel than the flavor. It’s a clean finish, too; refreshing, but not quite bracing.

Laurelwood Workhorse IPAAs baseball season draws nigh, one can sooner count the days of summer than run out of foods to accompany the beer that took home first place in the second annual National IPA Championships. Burgers, hot dogs, garlic fries, four kinds of fish, fried chicken, barbecued chicken, slow-cooked chicken, chili, pizza—who knows, maybe even breakfast with a bacon and brie.

To the other, those whose palates turn more toward lagers, weizens, and Belgians will be appalled.

Yeah. Hopheads. And this one goes on that list. Vasili Gletsos should be proud.


What? It’s a stupid word.

Today’s Typographical Tumult

Lean Forward, Stand Still: MSNBCSteve Benen gets the dubious honor for Typo of the Day:

“Look, the 1980s were a while ago and the political world has a notoriously short member, but Reagan wasn’t a comic-book character.”

It should be noted that the folks at MSNBC did, in fact, make the necessary correction, and quickly. But, you know … we saw that ….


A Matter of Risk and Reward

I coulda had a V-8!Er … um … right.

Okay, honestly, the number of jokes buried in this one is a sum greater than its parts. Only attempt that assessment if you think the nuggets of comedic relief you’ll dig out are a reward worth the risk.

No, you won’t get fired for viewing this at work, but your fellows might start wondering about you.

Nearly Amusing

Every once in a while, politicians manage to do their job swiftly and efficiently. Usually, this is because they are embarrassed.

A man who took cellphone photos up the skirts of women riding the Boston subway did not violate state law because the women were not nude or partially nude, Massachusetts’ highest court ruled Wednesday.

Dave Granlund, March 6 2014, via Cagle Post.The Supreme Judicial Court overruled a lower court that had upheld charges against Michael Robertson, who was arrested in August 2010 by transit police who set up a sting after getting reports that he was using his cellphone to take photos and video up female riders’ skirts and dresses.

The ruling immediately prompted top Beacon Hill lawmakers to pledge to update state law.

Existing so-called Peeping Tom laws protect people from being photographed in dressing rooms and bathrooms when nude or partially nude, but the way the law is written, it does not protect clothed people in public areas, the court said.

“A female passenger on a MBTA trolley who is wearing a skirt, dress, or the like covering these parts of her body is not a person who is ‘partially nude,’ no matter what is or is not underneath the skirt by way of underwear or other clothing,” the court said in its ruling.

State law “does not apply to photographing (or videotaping or electronically surveilling) persons who are fully clothed and, in particular, does not reach the type of upskirting that the defendant is charged with attempting to accomplish on the MBTA,” the court said.

The SJC said that while such actions should be illegal, they are not, given the way state law is written.

It took what, two days, to make that fix?


Pratt, Mark. “Mass. court: Subway ‘upskirt’ photos not illegal”. March 5, 2014. March 8, 2014.

Associated Press. “After ruling, Massachusetts bans ‘upskirt’ photos”. March 7, 2014. March 8, 2014.

Image credit: Detail of image by Dave Granlund, via Cagle Post.

Just a Reminder

With much attention given to the evolving circumstances in Ukraine, perhaps it seems the wrong moment to remind that there are other wars going on:

Ethiopian and Somali government forces have seized a key town in central Somalia from the Islamist militant group al-Shabab, officials say.

There is always a war going on, somewhere.At least 12 people were killed in heavy fighting for control of Rabdhure town in Bakol region, residents said.

The attack may signal the start of a new offensive against al-Shabab, according to a BBC reporter in Somalia.

Ethiopian troops are part of a 22,000-strong African Union (AU) force battling the militants in Somalia.

The BBC’s Mohamed Moalimu in the capital, Mogadishu, says the fall of Rabdhure is significant, as it was a major al-Shabab base for attacks across the region.

It would be the first town the group has lost since September, when Mahaday in central Somalia fell to AU-backed government forces.


There are always other wars going on.