Ossified

Uno….D’oh

by The Bone on Sep.12, 2013, under Promotion

I love content regulation on television, particularly the Super Bowl.

Don’t you just love the awesome regulations that restrict our content in this country ? I mean, who wants to see the cool commercials when we can see an advertisement for Seton’s Beewax Mouse Poop Cleaner ? Speaking of which, I stumbled across the website of a cool service provider called UnoTelly. The layman’s explanation for those of you out there is that it allows you to access sites that are normally restricted to you based on where you live. Ever go to a site based in the USA and you get some sort of message indicating that you are unable to view it because of where you are ? Not anymore. Not with UnoTelly. Check it out because it’s very cool stuff and will allow you to subscribe to services like Hulu, Netflix, Vudu and others. It even has region selection like changing to the U.K. and what not.

It is smooth. very smooth. No lag that I can detect. And it is simple to install. I had tried their competitor’s product before and I have to say UnoTelly is vastly superior for several reasons:

1. Multiple DNS options. In this continent alone, there are over half dozen DNS options to choose from, ensuring that you will have working DNS servers.

2. Ease of use. They have an app you install that automatically keeps your service up to date, and it runs when your computer starts up.

3. Price. The initial price point is the same as others but the beauty is, the longer the term your subscribe to the cheaper it is.

4. Commitment. UnoTelly’s chief competitor will only allow monthly sign ups and, as such, there are no discounts. To me, that doesn’t inspire confidence.

So, all in all, I highly recommend UnoTelly as it is the most effective tool I can find to open up the world of A La Carte TV programming.

It agitates me to no end that every single bill from the cable company carries with it an excise tax to fund an organization that limits our choices. It is astonishing really. If government is looking to trim some waste, a good start is the CRTC. The Canadian content rule is sort of silly. Sell the spots to the highest bidders and if they’re American, so be it. It’s still revenue, it still stimulates economic growth. You could also look at keeping some of the CRTC intact to worry about real issues such as hate speech and various other messages of hate, incitement of violence etc. Then redeploy other members into a liaison position where, instead of restricting content and keeping virtual borders on lockdown, create an awareness type of branch where they work to put the American advertisers in touch with the Canadian business trying to buy ad slots. That’s a simplified version, but you get it.

In another barely related note, don’t let the giants of the world bully you into giving up. When a company has a crazy and convoluted customer service setup, it’s designed to make you give up. Also, don’t underestimate the power of the net. I turned on my plasma tv on the weekend and there was a black line running across the screen. I ran many searches using combinations of the words “plasma, 50 inch, black line across screen” and also the manufacturer’s name who shall remain nameless here. Anyhow, those searches bring back tens of millions of results and it seems to be a problem with all plasmas from the 2010 line and they are conking out the same way – black line anywhere between 12-24 months. So, in short, it is happening right around the end of warranty. Convenient.

I got on the phone immediately and I demanded an escalation (PS front line agents can rarely ever help you even with telecom services – they can offer small tweakages but the Retention department are the ones who help the most) and I gave my information. I got a call back from their executive care/warranty claims department and my case was simple – it doesn’t matter if my warranty expired as this is not a warranty matter anymore since searches return millions of hits and this problem is widespread and is happening in the same time range. It is not a warranty matter anymore as this is a defective product line and we now should be treating it as a recall.

When I mentioned the searches, they tried their counter by saying just because there are hits doesn’t mean it’s a problem.

My counter to that was “what, do you think they’re doing a statistical comparison between Babe Ruth and Barry Bonds and typing the words ’50 inch plasma black line across screen’ will give them those stats ? It’s being searched because it’s an issue – your company sent junk out the door and now it’s dying on you. It’s very simple. Either you recognize it’s a recall issue and honor my warranty, or I buy a replacement from your competitor and spend the next 5 years telling everyone how your company not only sells junk, but they won’t even take corrective measures to fix it.”

To that, the agent said “ok, I understand, what we’ll do for you is we will send replacement parts. The issue is a faulty Y Buffer so we will send the parts to your local service provider. We will cover parts but you have to pay for the service call.”

That was acceptable to me because that is standard warranty practice but I had to say “yeah, it’s just people searching and not a problem but that’s why you identified the problem right away and have the replacement part ready to ship out. Thank you”

It made me laugh though, because it reminded me of that scene in the movie Casino >

“You got that thing for me ?”

“What thing ? Oh, Nicky. I thought you was layin’.”

“No, no, I’m takin’. I was takin’.”

“You sure ?”

“I’m positive.”

“I’m a little confused.”

“You’re a little confused? Maybe if I stick your f’n face through this window… you’ll get unconfused. Gimme the fuckin’ money.”

“I’m sorry, Nick. I didn’t mean anything by it.

“That’s why you had it ready, you thought I was f’n layin’ it”

On to the point, where I was talking about retroprogressive tech movements. Tablets. Think about it. Cell phones started out as these things so large they could be used as some sort of video game weapon. Computers once upon a time were the same thing. Same with TVs and VCRs. Then began the race to make them smaller, more compact.

However, things can only get so small. At that point you have to switch to integration, blending. Which is what you’re seeing with tablets. You can look at it in two different ways and it’s not a “half full or half empty” kind of thing, as it is not tied to an outlook; it’s either an even smaller and more streamlined computer, or a larger smartphone. I lean more toward larger smartphone simply because of the specs. But it says something though, that phones are now starting to increase in size again.

Of course, we are extremely close to getting to where we should be, which some sort of Matrix type deal where we can just close our eyes and see what we want by thinking it. And no, I am not referring to imagination in that regard, but imagination will certainly get us to Thought Media.

In the meantime though, the latest wave of awesome will be the HMD aka Head Mounted Display. Too many kinds of awesome !

I’m out, like shrinking phones.

Later,

The Bone

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Taking a d’ayeve

by The Bone on Jan.23, 2013, under Ranting

Howdy kids

So recently, two legends accused their former coach of throwing the Super Bowl. Tim Brown and Jerry Rice.

It got started really with Tim Brown suggesting Bill Callahan threw the Super Bowl to his buddy, Jon Gruden.

Then, Jerry Rice decided to get in on the fun.

So basically, they contend he threw the Super Bowl because he hated the Raiders ? Winning a Super Bowl means money galore. So rather than winning the Super Bowl in order to take more money from the team he hated and THEN tanking them, the better plan was to just toss the game to his friend ?

Remember, Gruden built that Raiders team then left for Tampa and people were largely saying it was the Gruden bowl. Had Callahan won, sure there would have been some who said “it was Gruden’s team” much the same way the Gruden detractors were quick to say Tampa was Tony Dungy’s team. But apparently Callahan thought it would be best to sabotage his own career because of a supposed hatred of the Raiders ?

I like a good conspiracy theory as much as the next guy. Hell, I believe the NFL is “rigged” to a certain extent. Not scripted, like pro wrestling, but the powers that be certainly try to steer certain outcomes. It’s a multibillion dollar business. The stewards MUST have some sort of control. You want your money makers playing in the spotlight.

Nobody comes right out and says it, so few people believe it, but sports are definitely rigged. College Football is honest enough to admit that part of bowl game selection is dictated by fan base ie teams are chosen by how many bums they can put in seats and how many tv sets will tune in. Pro basketball, the stars get favorable calls. Lebron, Kobe, Jordan, Shaq etc . Shaq charged almost every time. LeBron, Kobe and Jordan travelled. If anyone coughed in their direction it was a foul. Money making players for money making football teams get away with murder. Michael Irvin used to push off regularly and never get called. Until him and his pals got busted in a hotel room with hookers and bags of drugs. Then all of a sudden he started getting called. Did he magically lose his ability to push off effectively? Or did the league stop favoring someone who brought negative attention to the sport?

It’s not a secret that Callahan was not popular in the Raiders’ locker room. He had some tough decisions to make as the Raiders had been built with pricey, aging veterans with the goal of making a Super Bowl run, and Callahan wanted to get younger which meant getting rid of expensive, aging talent.

It’s also no secret that Callahan wasn’t a very good head coach. His record at Nebraska says as much. Or maybe he hated Cornhuskers too.

Part of the reason these players are accusing him of throwing the Super Bowl is because of the last minute game plan change.

We know now that during that period of time, videotaping was going on. “Spygate” it was called. What’s to say he didn’t change it because he got wind maybe they were being taped ? Or perhaps his openly bi polar center was messed up and blabbed the game plan. Or maybe the original game plan to run run run was a head fake and he felt like his league MVP quarterback, who threw over 600 times for over 4700 yards, might have been up to the task of throwing two his two hall of fame receivers.

The 2002 Raiders averaged 38 throws per game. They threw 44 times in the Super Bowl. Of course, they were trailing which would have increased their throws. Their leading receivers during the year were Jerry Rice with 92 catches, Charlie Garner with 91, and Tim Brown with 81. Wait, Charlie Garner ? Charlie Garner, their leading rusher that year with 182 rushing attempts. That’s right, their leading rusher had less than 200 carries and had exactly half as many catches as he had rushing attempts, and was 1 catch shy of the team leader. The Raiders lead the league in passing and were in the bottom half in rushing (ranked 18th) yet we’re supposed to believe that Callahan made some drastic departure for the team’s M.O. to tank the Super Bowl ?

I love this part > “We all called it sabotage, because Callahan and (Jon) Gruden was good friends, and Callahan had a big problem with the Raiders, hated the Raiders, and only came because Gruden made him come,” Brown said at the time.

Umm, what ? Apparently John Gruden held the deed to Bill Callahan’s life since Callahan was MADE to join the Raiders’ staff against his will.

Look, I know head trauma is nothing to joke about but when you look at everything on the surface, I have to fall on the side of “I think Rice and Brown have brain damage from concussions” because the things coming out of their mouths borders on lunacy and is detached from any semblance of logic.
I’m out, like their sanity.

Later,

The Bone

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Suits’ Law

by The Bone on Jan.16, 2013, under Ranting

Howdy kids, hope everyone had a great holiday season.

I felt it was time to check in for a few minutes because of something that disturbed me.

For years you have seen and heard me rant about the player safety issue in pro sports and how, in particular, it’s a huge farce in the NFL and in my lifetime I am certain we’ll see a glorified flag football league. To be honest, I will be somewhat glad; I love athleticism and superior feats of physical skill and, while I appreciate the effort that goes into 300 pound monsters bashing heads for 60 minutes per game, that is not superior athleticism. It is like suggesting Yokozuna and Shawn Michaels were both on the same athletic level.


I won’t drone on about that as my feelings are known. I will, however, talk about what has happened in the NBA recently, and the potential exists for things to get ugly.

San Antonio has an older team, full of 30 something players and some of those players are in their mid 30s. Recently, because of scheduling, San Antonio’s head coach gave his star players the night off against Miami. After all, it’s about winning championships so why not rest your older legs in the regular season ?

Well, it got messy right off the bat when the league fined the Spurs. However, it got worse yet just the other day when some lawyer, named Larry McGuinness, decided to file a class action lawsuit. The lawyer contends that he, as well as other fans, “suffered economic damages” as a result of paying a premium price for a ticket that shouldn’t cost more.

A clip from a sports site >

“He then went on to say ‘It was like going to Morton’s Steakhouse and paying $63 for porterhouse and they bring out cube steak,’ and said he bought his ticket on the resale market. “That’s exactly what happened here.”

So he bought scalped tickets and some marquee players were out. More importantly, he revealed his true nature – by using a steakhouse metaphor, he more or less is admitting to viewing athletes as nothing more than pieces of meat.

I am also concerned about what happens next. The league fining the team made this happened. By declaring they are wrong, it now opens the door for class action law suits. Also when more and more in the player safety discussion we hear about fudged medical reports, reports ignored/disregarded, how does this help ?

I am sure it will got squashed along the way somewhere, but can you just imagine it, players having to provide phlegm samples to prove they have the flu so as not to subject their teams to class action lawsuits ?

Truth be told, this lawyer’s “plight” sounds like a bad movie or tv show plot – it gives the impression he gambled on the game. In fact, it gives the impression he is in some debt and this game would have helped him. Can’t you just picture some coked out lawyer freaking out because he bet on the Spurs only to see them sit their main guys, and here he is freaking out about how to pay off whatever loanshark/drug dealer he owes money to ?

Ahh well, if nothing else it will be fun to watch all of this unfold.

Anyhow, I’m out, Like Tim Duncan.

Later,

The Bone

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Fuhtbawl

by The Bone on Dec.19, 2012, under Ranting

Hello kids. Abbreviated version on account of the holiday season.

So.

Player safety.

Ahh, the lingering topic.

Seems everyone is reading ossifiedonline as well >

Safety Tirade 1

Safety Tirade 2

Remember what I said ?

Here

And here

So now even the players themselves are ackowledging the farce that is so called player safety.

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Eh ? ging Graysfully

by The Bone on Nov.28, 2012, under Ranting

“I think what a lot of bands don’t do is they don’t age gracefully”

That was Nikki Sixx in 1991. Right after they signed their mega deal with Elektra. A few months before tossing their surfer singer to the curb in an attempt to do a grunge album that was Soundgarden-eqsque.

Now, I will admit, I do still find the self-titled 1994 album “Motley Crue” to be an amazing masterpiece. In retrospect I actually also like Generation Swine.

However, Nikki Sixx did not follow his own words. When they fractured as a band and could no longer fit in with the current, they tried to go retro. Now they are a caricature of themselves. That’s fine. Some folks like it and they are still Motley Crue. They still put on a good show.

However, this what’s coming out of the band that gave us Shout at the Devil, Primal Scream and Dr Feelgood >

Sad.

What’s just as sad is when bands can no longer use trickery.

There’s nothing wrong with touching up the vocals for an album because live, there’s so much going on, you won’t notice the flaws. However, what happens when you “no longer have it?”

What I mean by that is, when you start off as screecher, then what?

When you reach a certain age, you just can’t do it anymore and unless you change the tuning, you’re done. Well, unless you’re Rob Halford and even he lost it when he neared 60.

As much as it pains me to say it, bands like Bon Jovi did it properly. Used a bit of gruff, but largely used his default voice so, as he aged, there’d be no noticeable deterioration. The same applies to Mick Jagger.

Aerosmith is a band that needs to call it a day. Steve Tyler sounds like an old man now. Mick Jagger is a bona fide senior citizen, but to hear him, you wouldn’t know it, whereas Steve Tyler sounds like a very old man. Perhaps they were going for an “organic” sound, but he just sounds so old. I don’t have an issue with rockers aging, but I do believe that if you’re going to carry on like a young man, you shouldn’t sound like you are ready to gather people around the campfire for story time.

Sometimes, you just have to face reality.

Sometimes, you have to heed Megatron >

It\'s over Prime

That is a multi level pun, by the way.

Which brings me to Soundgarden. They just released their first album in over 15 years. They should have waited another 15. Look, Soundgarden is one of my favorite bands. Chris Cornell was a vocal god. However, he blew out his voice in the 90s and needed surgery. He has not been the same since. It was evident on the Audioslave albums.

When I think of Soundgarden in their prime, I think of the Denis Leary skit when he talks about how you want to remember people like Elvis in their prime, with a full head of hair. Not the 70s Vegas version. The same applies to Soundgarden and Cornell. At this stage, Cornell more or less sounds like Kermit the Frog karaokeing Soundgarden songs as the Cookie Monster trying to sound like Brian Johnson of ACDC covering Soundgarden songs.

Compare this >

To this >

Or live >

Ahh well, what can you do ? Somewhere, there is a group of musicians growing up who loved Soundgarden and there is a singer who has chops like Cornell did.

I’m out, like Cornell’s voice.

Later,

The Bone

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Disneh ?

by The Bone on Nov.07, 2012, under Opining

Hello kids.

Sorry about the delay between entries. Major life changes. I can’t promise the same frequency as before but I will make best efforts.

So, the big news that prompted a rant. George Lucas sold his empire to Disney. My wife told me about it, that’s how “unplugged” I have been lately. Disney plans to keep the Star Wars franchise going, including chapters 7-9 starting in 2015. You know what I have to say about that ? Good on Lucas and good on Disney.

A lot of people who know me expected me to blow a gasket, but the fact is I have changed over the years. I have had some friends voice their displeasure about this. Of course, it’s not rooted in any reality that the average person knows of.

The most vociferous of my friends is a bit of a self styled pseudo-hermit. The issue with this is he holds onto the old “Disney is evil” mantra without any real evidence or substance. His biggest argument (at first) was that they’d meddle. Of course, being a pseudo-hermit, his knowledge is incomplete, as he has voluntarily chosen to “unplug” which renders his opinions out of date.

While complaining about the Lucas sale he brought up Marvel. After he confirmed he enjoyed the Marvel movies that came out post Disney purchase his line of reasoning was “it’s coming.” When I said they’d have already done it if they were going to, his counter argument was that those items they did not meddle with were already in progress. When I pointed out that throughout the history of the entertainment business, A&R types and creative consultants have come in at the 11th hour and asked for revisions, he held to his in progress argument. I mean, the new GI Joe movie was set to be released with Duke supposedly getting killed, until Channing Tatum became a mega star, so they decided to yank the movie and rewrite and refilm the Duke part. When I pointed out that Joss Whedon was hired for The Avengers AFTER Disney bought Marvel and Whedon rewrote the original story and they had a chance to intervene then and there, he held to his “in progress” argument, despite my having just pointed out that they had just started over. At this point I realized I was talking to someone who was hell bent on arguing an antiquated anti-Disney point of view with maybe 1/10th of the information at hand.

He kept insisting “it’s coming” so he more or less wanted to argue a hypothetical scenario.

So, I reminded him that Disney owns ESPN and ABC. I reminded him that Disney has not meddled in their affairs. He became indignant asking how they could possibly meddle with a sports network. I began to remind him that the network televises violent sports, so there’s one way. I was met with “that’s the most r*t*rded f’ing thing I have ever heard.” Apparently he was not hearing his own arguments.

I reminded him that ABC rivals FOX for the edgiest primetime network tv channel with regards to how far they push the envelope. The response I got ? “Yeah, but Spiderman is a cartoon and Disney deals in cartoons.”

At that point I realized what I was talking to. It’s very comparable to the person that cries “sell out” when a band reaches a certain level of success. The fan is expecting rich 30 somethings with families to be able to duplicate the output of what they’d attained when they were 20 years old, broke and living in a van. Down by the river or not. As though you can duplicate the circumstances.

What is really happening is they feel life passing them by and they want things to stay the same forever. I know, I was once one of those. I spent years waiting for my favorite band to make ___ part 2 until I came out of it. The issue with my friend and the Disney/Lucas thing is twofold. I know he is a bit unnerved that the whole comic book thing has gone mainstream. That used to be “his thing” now it’s everyone’s thing and yeah, there are “fairweather fans”

I don’t know, when my cult favorites went mainstream I loved it for no other reason than I could mock those who mocked me.

He kept insisting Disney would interfere. I asked him “what, do you think they are going to have Goofy square off against Darth Vader in a lightsaber duel ?”

I once was ticked at Lucas. I was 24 when the Phantom Menace came out. I had waited 16 years for Star Wars to come back and I had to watch Jar Jar Binks and Darth Vader as a little kid ? At the time I was ticked. I was a young single and childless man. I was ticked 50 year old billionaire parent George Lucas didn’t create the same magic as 30 something struggling childless filmmaker George Lucas created.

I approach it like this – yes, Lucas took it in a “kid” direction but so what ? He already made Greedo shoot first. He had the little forest teddy bears terrified of a 6 foot tall golden cyborg that could slowly float, but utterly unphased by speeder bikes that travel 100 mph and shoot light beams, as well as the armored men who emerged from the giant metal birds, plus the 40 foot tall armored two legged monster that shoots light beams. But yes, Disney will ruin it, right ? Give me a break. Disney puts out great stuff !

“They’ll make up new stuff and f*ck with everything.”

“No, they’ll make up new stuff and leave the other stuff more or less intact because, at $4-5 bucks per comic, it’s not f*cking kids buying comics. It’s adults and you don’t get to a level of success like that by alienating your target demographic.”

“But they created a Mighty Ducks hockey team.”

“Yeah, and it’s been largely successful.”

“But you said they don’t interfere.”

“They didn’t. They didn’t buy a team and rename/relocate it. They bought into the league as an expansion team.”

“It still shows they interfere.”

“Ok, supposing this argument holds, that’s one example from 20+ years ago under Michael Eisner. Show me some examples from Robert Iger.”

“Doesn’t matter, it’s still Disney.”

So basically by that reasoning, we can expect him to grow up to be just like his father. His surname is the same so it shouldn’t matter that he is under his own leadership; the brand name is what governs behavior, not the captain at the helm, right ?

Look, it’s like this. I was 2 and half when the original Star Wars came out and I saw it at the theatre. It had a mega huge impact on me. Lucas this year started releasing the movies in 3D and they are to be released annually. In January I found out I was going to be a father. That means when “Star Wars Episode 4 – A New Hope” comes out, my son will be around the same age I was. I will get to take HIM to see that movie at the theatre. Now to find out there will be more Star Wars movies starting in 2015, I get to take my son to see NEW Star Wars movies, starting at the same age I was.

So that is how I am approaching it. Because Lucas sold it to Disney, my son will get to experience new Star Wars movies, cartoons, comics etc. And his grandson will. And HIS grandson will. Star Wars long after I am gone. So no, I don’t give a damn if “Lucas and Disney are pissing on the memory of my childhood.” It’s not about me anymore. It’s about my son. And I certainly have much more important things to worry about than whether or not Disney messes with Marvel or Star Wars character continuity. Of course, I remember that the creator of Star Wars f*cked with Han Solo’s character by having Greedo shoot first, and Marvel shat the bed on Spiderman with the whole ‘Ben Reilly clone” saga.” Yes, but Disney will mess it up.

I’m out like rational arguments against Disney.

Later,

The Bone

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Just checking in

by The Bone on Oct.31, 2012, under Opining

Hey all

I haven’t stopped blogging, just on a bit of a hiatus for now.

I will be back.

Stay tuned.

Thanks for reading !

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A Talk O’Lips Now

by The Bone on Sep.12, 2012, under Ranting

Enough is enough.

Please, stop it.

Put a sock in it.

Can it.

Whatever expression it takes, just stop.

I am referring to this insane over the top need to overhype and oversell everything with rhetoric that SHOULD, by all rights, make the talker look like an interstellar moron. Instead, we seem to just accept. Worse, we seem to really just not catch it. Maybe it’s because of that 4 year event we are rolling into, everyone’s got their mouths overprimed.

Hi kids, how are you ? Hope you had a great summer !

Something that’s bugged me for a while is something that really happens in sports. At least that’s where I notice it. This “me now” generation has caused some insanely skewed expectational timelines. Too many times I hear, with regards to some accomplishment in sports, something along the lines of “the first time that’s happened since….” and the sad part is, it’s usually not a very long period of time. Rarely anymore is it a generational thing. It’s usually something that happened just the season prior.

Yesterday really ticked me off. I read an article by Mark Schlabach of ESPN who I actually quite enjoy and find to be one of the best in the football business. When he said THIS it really ticked me off – “Hopkins continued to be the focal point of the Tigers’ passing game without Sammy Watkins. Hopkins caught six passes for 105 yards and three touchdowns in Clemson’s 52-27 win over Ball State. Hopkins caught all three touchdowns in the first half, becoming the first FBS player with three receiving touchdowns in a half since Tavon Austin (WVU) did it against Clemson in the Orange Bowl.”

This accomplishment happened in week 2 of the current NCAA season. Yes, the Orange Bowl was played in January of 2012 and we are now in September, but there’s been ONE week of games since the Orange Bowl. So basically, it’s the first time in a week someone has accomplished that. Clearly the attempt was to try to make it seem like 8 months had gone by but the reality is 1 week of actual football had gone by.

Ridiculous.

And of course, for reasons that have never been truly explained, we live in a culture where it is believed that entertainers have to be heard. Admittedly, those in the movie/music business can be funny to hear, if only for their attempts to sound as though they are tethered to reality.

Dave Chappelle said it best with reference to September 11 >

Athletes are the worst though. By and large a collection of folks who chose a career path that more or less led them away from the intellectual world, and we’re supposed to care about their thoughts on anything ? Blanket statement here, but they’re usually popping off sickening clichés like Brenden Fraser did here in the movie Bedazzled >

Of course, when they go off script, like a T.O. tends to do, that actually might be worse.

Please keep in mind I say this as I type in my extremely important blog that I must update because you desperately need to know what some dude on the internet thinks.

I am very agitated, clearly. To be honest, most of it stems from this NHL lockout business. You know, I am fed up with it. You don’t have the revenue that MLB, NBA and NFL has, so stop asking to be paid like that. Follow the NFL’s model, then figure it out proportionate to the revenue. As for the owners, you hired a basketball guy and you give him too much power. At this stage, I hope the league folds. Seriously. Hockey was great. I grew up during the golden era of Gretzky, Lemieux, Bossy, Messier, Yzerman etc etc. The game has gotten substantially worse in terms of the product, and now they are ceasing action every decade or so over money. I hope the league collapses. If that makes me sound like less of a Canadian, so be it. You know what hockey is now ? It’s a series of concussion stories, work stoppages, relocations, contraction, suspensions for dirty play, suspensions for actions that are criminal insofar as they are actually committing assault with a deadly weapon, holdouts, arbitration, complaints about long front loaded contracts that taper off once they cross year 10 in the term, decreased scoring, Star #1 is gone with post concussion syndrome, star #2 is aloof and has lost his mojo. That’s the NHL now. It is in the news all the time and never about actual quality of play. Time for it to go.

I’m out, like silence.

Later,

The Bone

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Not For Long

by The Bone on Sep.05, 2012, under Ranting

Ahh yes, the NFL season is upon us. Fun times.

I am still going to stick to my theory from a while back here, here and here when I said the NFL would be a glorified flag football league in our lifetime ? I am still standing by it, as there’s been no new information in the past year and a half to suggest otherwise.

From rules changes to studies to new equipment to radical changes in offensive philosophy, the game is changing. All across the southern U.S. there’s a proliferation of 7 on 7 leagues with the emphasis being on skill. It is very passing game friendly and there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that; myself, I am a HUGE fan of the wide open, spread out shotgun attack, preferably of the hurry-up/no-huddle variety.

Until such time, the Not For Long league begins action today with two teams who are grossly miscast as old school grinders. There’s nothing old school about the Cowboys or Giants. Look at the offensive philosophies of each team and try to say they are “your father’s Giants/Cowboys.”

Even Baltimore brought in new offensive personnel and coaches and are going to operate from the no huddle. If the goal is to reduce injuries, spread out no huddle is the way to go – not only does it prevent the defense from really buckling down, forcing them into a “hang on for dear life” mode but it will also eliminate the Ted Washington type players of the world – the 400 + pound players listed at 350 who literally waddle and whose knees are caving in as they walk, sprinting 5 yards and waddling to the sideline looking for oxygen, all the while being referred to as “athletes.” As the hurry-up offenses take over, a premium will be placed on endurance since there’ll be no chance to get the Hutts (down, set Hutt?) off the field.

I still am a proponent of increasing the size of the field to create more space. Remember, when the dimensions were made, the lineman (the biggest people on the field, usually 6’5 or taller and over 300 pounds) were smaller than today’s quarterbacks. More field means more playing space = more tackling and less colliding.

And, of course, the net benefit – more exciting and acrobatic plays !

Of course, that’s just my opinion. I may be wrong.

I’m out, like kickoff returns.

Later,

The Bone

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Call Edge Football

by The Bone on Aug.29, 2012, under Opining

Howdy kids. Well, it’s that time of year for my favorite variation of my favorite sport. College football. In this week’s entry I will offer some observations, opinions and some mild predictions.

So, I won’t get too formal and structured on this and I’ll try to keep it loosey goosey.

Ok, so the favorites.

LSU. Stacked. Stacked. Stacked. They went 13-1 last year, losing in a rematch to Alabama in the final game. This year they are actually better, as they have a real QB now. They play in the tougher conference of the best conference so they are always battle hardened.

Alabama. There will be no repeat of 2010. Bama didn’t lose as many guys and the new starters actually have gained much experience over the past two seasons. Oh and they have a new offensive coordinator. Doug Nussmeir. Played for John L Smith who groomed Bobby Petrino. Coached in the CFL. So in short, he is a “power spread” guy. Yes, Alabama, with all the talent Saban has been stockpiling, is now looking at actually opening it up offensively. Be afraid.

USC. The glamour pick. With the NFL all but certain to return to LA in the next few years, LA football is getting plenty of attention. The Trojans are stacked beyond stacked. They lack depth, but they are stacked. A Hesiman front running 4 years starting QB. An upperclassman WR who is considered the best in the country, plus a sophomore WR who may even be better means sick numbers for Barkley and probably a Heisman. However, it’s that team up north…

Oregon. I don’t care if a freshman is starting at QB; they got to the title game two years ago with first timer Darron Thomas. Apparently new QB Marcus Mariota is leaps and bounds better. It matters not. What I see is Oregon upping their already insanely up tempo fast break attack. Coach Chip Kelly has been attending basketball games looking for ways to improve his offense. Yes, you read that. Then you have a steady diet of Kenjon Barner and freakshow De’Anthony Thomas, the most explosive player since Percy Harvin. He had 2235 all purpose yards and 18 TDs on 140 touches. That’s 15.9 yards every time he touches the ball and a TD every 7 touches. He averaged 10 yards per carry and scored 7 TDs for an average of one TD per 7.8 touches. Oh, and in the biggest game of his life, the Rose Bowl, he had 314 all purpose yards. 4 catches for 34 yards. 2 carries for 155 yards and two TDs. Yes, that’s correct. He touched it twice, scored both times for an average of 77.5 yards per run. He returned 5 kicks for 125 yards for an average of 25 per. So, USC is the glamour pic but I cannot fathom a scenario in which USC, with zero depth, can sustain itself against the 3 headed fast break monster that is Oregon. USC has no real bench, so how will their front 7 manage to deal with Oregon ?

So in short I am leaning on LSU vs Oregon for all the marbles.

I think Michigan will take a step back. I think Urban Meyer will have Ohio State playing at a top level THIS year (contending next year) and while they can’t play for a title, they will certainly piss a lot of people off.

The Pac 12 will be the most exciting conference to watch what with the crazy offenses out there.

I think the Big 12 will still be awesome to watch as they’ve added another Air Raid team in West Virginia, who should fit right in with the gunslingers out there.

I think I am not sold on Florida yet. I don’t care if their OC is from Boise. He was the OC one year. He inherited an offense Bryan Harsin built. He inherited a 4th year senior QB who started from day one and was the winingest QB ever in college. Basically, he simply had to NOT get in the way. I will temper my excitement until I see him actually develop a QB and system from scratch, on his own. Until such time, I will operate on the assumption that this is a revisitation of the Zook era. Hey, Jeremy Foley and Bernie Machen – no more interlopers or outsiders. Yeah, Spurrier left but he gave you a dozen years. Go get somebody and bring them home. Please, no more brining in guys who are using you as a steppingstone. You are Florida. You are a marquee program. You are a destination job. You should be nobody’s springboard or stopover. Give Paul Lassiter (aka Will Muschamp) one more year then go bring someone home. Maybe Kerwin Bell. Maybe coax Danny Wuerffel out of retirement. You are Florida. Go get an offensive minded coach.

Well, that’s all for this week. Enjoy the new football season.

I’m out, like Florida defensive minded head coaches.

Later,

The Bone

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