Before Bobby Valentine, there was Vladimir Putin

Back in our college days, my friends and I would frequent one of our glorious university’s computer labs. Since we attended college at around the time that chat rooms were beginning to proliferate, our time was spent talking to people we’d never meet.

Naturally, using the anonymity that the ‘Net grants, we’d play all sorts of pranks on each other. Without going into detail, let’s just say that some of them were epic.

This kind of tomfoolery would extend to acquaintances. We knew these 2 guys and on one occurrence we tried to punk them via chat room. They must have caught on because one of them (the spymaster) sent the other on a mission unworthy of Dzerzhinsky.

The fact that our counterespionage efforts uncovered the plot reveals the efficacy of our nemesis’ total lack of subterfuge. After this incident we glossed this guy, “Beano the Spy”.

It is this lack of subterfuge and underhandedness to which I pay tribute to on this day.

Exhibit A is former New York Mets skipper, Bobby Valentine. Bobby was ejected from a game and then came back to the dugout looking like this,
bobby-valentine

Exhibit B, I’m afraid, is anachronistic. At the time the following picture was taken, we didn’t know that the spy in question would later become Russia’s President and more importantly, because of his unfortunate last name, the butt of many Mexicans’ jokes,

putin

Source: Pete Souza

Here’s the story behind the picture:

“Undercover Putin In KGB Reagan Ruse”

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About the Class of 2012…

As a new school year dawns I thought this appropriate.

Check this action out:  Mindset List for the Class of 2012

Here are some notables:
#20 The Warsaw Pact is as hazy for them as the League of Nations was for their parents.  (Who doesn’t miss Mutually Assured Destruction?  Though with Russia’s recent antics…)

#32 There has always been Pearl Jam.   (If the tykes even know who PJ is…)

Almost 10 years of Mack Brown at Texas

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This is the 3rd post in the “Ticket Stub” series (click here and here for the first 2).

This is the ticket stub from Mack Brown’s first game as head coach of THE University of Texas. The game was won easily by Texas, 66-36 and was for the most part not very memorable outside of being Brown’s first game at the helm.

Next year will be the 10th year of Mack’s tenure at the 40 Acres and while he has raised the program to national prominence, and even won a national title, questions still linger in regards to his ability to coach. That he is a fine recruiter as any is beyond question, but can he coach?

Without further ado I step aside to what I think is a well-written and accurate post on the Mack Brown Era at Texas,
“Welcome Back My Friends to the Show That Never Ends”

Francis Collins Makes UVA Graduates Squirm

About a month or so ago I was at Barnes & Noble and perused through a copy of Dr. Francis Collins’ book, “The Language of God”.

The good doctor is not only a world-class scientist but a devout Christian who sees no conflict between science and the Christian faith. I’ve blogged about him here.

While I still disagree with his take that Genesis 1 and 2 is not to be taken literally, his Biologos model deserves examination if anything because of his excellence as a scientist.

He covers it in the book, which is where I first ran across the model. I hope to write a couple of posts about Biologos in the near future, based on a couple of interviews Dr. Collins gave.

For now I want to quote something he said in a commencement speech at the University of Virginia back in 2001,

Decision number two: Well, this is the one that makes people squirm. What are you going to do about faith? Uh oh, not that one. But can there be any more important questions than these: How did we all get here? What is the meaning of life? How is it that we know deep-down inside what is right and wrong and yet rarely succeed in doing what is right for more than about thirty minutes? What happens to us after we die?

Thoughts?

Sports fan, you’re not part of the team

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“What did we win?”

Chris Rock (above) said this in response to the black community’s reaction to the O.J. verdict. He couldn’t understand why many within that community were celebrating one man’s justification in the murders of his ex-wife and her friend. He pointed out that the verdict did nothing for the people celebrating it, the verdict only helped Orenthal James Simpson.

Rock’s words rattle around inside my head every time I hear a sports fan refer to his favorite team as “we”. This phenomenon is endemic (and I would say fuels) to sports talk radio shows, as callers give their $0.02 as to how their team can improve. They’ll say something to the effect of,

We could win more games if only we had drafted Vince Young or if we had a better offensive line.

Admittedly in the past I have done this in conversations (and sometimes still catch myself doing it, old habits die hard) without much thought.

Had a good friend in college who consistently pointed out that there is no “we” as long as we are not part of the actual team. We all thought he was crazy, but it seems that he is right. It is strange to hear people, who are not part of a team, much less the organization, refer to that team as “we.”

This point became very obvious to me after the University of Texas (my alma mater) foot ball team won the 2006 National Championship. Did I enjoy the outcome? Immensely.

In fact, I ended up hugging a grown man in celebration. The experience was special and I wasn’t even at the game. Yet Rock’s words help to put things in perspective,

What did we win?

Absolutely nothing save some moments of euphoria and so-called bragging rights, is there anything more fleeting?