Monday, December 9, 2019

The Select Bus Service Machine Ate Up My Metrocard

I used to have a blog completely devoted to my commuting problems when I commuted from Queens to Newark.  I stopped adding to this blog when I retired in December 2017.  I no longer ride on New Jersey Transit, but I still ride on MTA buses and subways for my leisure activities.

Last Saturday I took the Q44 which is part of the select bus service program.  Riders must insert their Metrocard into the machines seen above and receive a printed ticket as proof of payment.  It saves time since the bus driver does not have to wait for riders to dip their Metrocards.  Occasionally a fare inspector will ask riders for their slip to ensure they have paid.

After I inserted my reduced senior citizen Metrocard into the machine, I received a ticket, but it ate up my Metrocard.  When I got to the Main Street Station I had to buy a full-fare card to get on the subway.  Today I phoned the MTA and reported this incident.  The person I spoke to said that this type of incident does occur.  I will have to wait about 3 weeks to get my senior citizen discount card.

Oh well. 

Anyway, I am writing this for Gregory Wolf who loves to read about my commuting problems.  He is an excellent baseball writer and editor for SABR (Society of American Baseball Research).  By the way, I was on the way to see St. Johns University Basketball at Madison Square Garden.

Sunday, December 8, 2019

Musical Tribute to John Lennon

Empty Garden - Elton John
All Those Years Ago - George Harrison
Here Today - Paul McCartney
Roll on John - Bob Dylan

Saturday, December 7, 2019

St. Johns 70 West Virginia 68 at Madison Square Garden

Since it is prohibitively expensive to go to professional basketball games at Madison Square Garden, we go to a few college games there every season.  The Knicks are awful as their record is 4-18 and just fired coach David Fizdale.

The game with St. Johns facing West Virginia in the Holiday Festival was pretty even most of the way with the score tied at 36 at half-time.  At one point in the second half, the Red Storm took a 10 point lead but the Mountaineers tied it up at 68. Rasheen Dunn hit two free throws for St. Johns with 5 seconds to go as the home team won,

The Garden was less than half full. I guess college basketball is not that popular in NYC.  St. Johns has not been nationally ranked in several years and has not had an impact player that gave the program national attention.  Also, there were some West Virginia fans in the stands, but I think there would have been a bigger crowd if two NYC area schools were playing.

Game Recap

Thursday, December 5, 2019

Thoughts on Impeachment

I usually don't comment on politics, but here goes.  During a common criminal trial, the judge asks prospective jurors if they can be objective.  Jurors must hear both sides of the argument as to whether the accused is innocent or guilty and make a decision that must be unanimous.

Impeachment is synonymous with an indictment and does not remove the president from office.  The full House of Representatives votes on articles of impeachment.  A majority is needed to impeach the president.  The representatives will not be objective since all Democrats will vote for impeachment.  Since the Democrats have a majority, impeachment is likely.

After a president is impeached, he must stand trial in the Senate where a two-thirds majority is required for removal from office.  The Republicans have a 54-46 majority in the Senate.  Every Democrat plus 21 Republicans would have to vote to convict resulting in removal from office.  This is not going to happen.  Trumps's impeachment will be a historical footnote.

It is my opinion that the Electoral College should have been abolished years ago as it is a relic of the early days of our republic.  Hillary Clinton had 3 million more votes than Trump but lost the elections since Trump had an electoral majority as he won "battleground states" with small majorities.  A constitutional amendment is required to abolish the Electoral College.  It is a very difficult process described in this document.

Tuesday, December 3, 2019

Gathering of Bob Dylan Enthusiasts on the Upper West Side

Selfie of Your Truly at today's luncheon

There have been yearly Meet and Greets of oldies enthusiasts for many years as documented in this journal.  For the first time to my knowledge, there was a gathering of Bob Dylan enthusiasts at a restaurant.  Most of the people were from out of town as they made a trip to NYC to see one or more of the 10 Dylan concerts at the Beacon Theater.

Nancy Cobb organized the event that was held at the Tessa Restaurant on Amsterdam Avenue at 77th Street which was within walking distance of the Beacon Theater.  The conversations were not completely about Dylan.  One man discussed why he thought Trump would win a second term.  Most of the people were at least  60 years old.  Everyone stated that the concerts on the current leg of the Never Ending Tour were excellent.

Nancy took a few photos of the entire group.  When she posts them, I'll will add them to this journal entry.

The Group at the Tessa Restaurant

Sunday, December 1, 2019

Miami Heat 109 Brooklyn Nets 106 at Barclays Center

View from my nosebleed section seat

This was the first sporting event that we have attended since the end of the baseball season.  Professional basketball and hockey tickets are very expensive, so I have to seek at a bargain, but including the fees, it was $65/ticket to sit upstairs.  

It was a close game from the start as neither team had more than an 8 point lead.  Kyrie Irving missed his 9th game in a row, so the Nets were shorthanded.  Spencer Dinwiddie led the home team with 29 points, but that just wasn't enough.  The Heat scored the last 10 points as they won 109-106.  The Nets are now 10-10 while the crosstown rival Knicks are now 4-16.  This could be a long season.

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