Wednesday, February 21, 2024

I Participated in the SABR Baseball Memories Project


Since 2015, members of the Society for American Baseball Research (SABR) have been developing and delivering baseball reminiscence programs in partnership with chapters of the Alzheimer’s Association, Veterans Administration facilities, and local senior/memory care organizations. This will hopefully improve the quality of living for people with dementia who like to reminisce about baseball.

Today I went to an organization in Manhattan with local SABR members called Caring Kind which provides services to adults at different stages of dementia.  We talked about the early New York Mets, Brooklyn Dodgers, and New York Giants, ticket prices, and salaries.  It was a rewarding experience.


 

Tuesday, February 20, 2024

I am Saddened by Political Polarization Today

 



I remember the polarization between Hawks and Doves during the Vietnam War era.  The rift between Democrats and Republicans or Liberals and Conservatives is much worse today.  People either love Donald Trump or hate him.  I just cannot understand why people would a man indicted 91 times as their president.  Joe Biden is old but is not a criminal.

Here are a few examples of how polarization has hurt the country:
  • In 2016 President Obama nominated Merrick Garland for Supreme Court Justice.  Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell refused to allow Garland to be evaluated saying that the next president should make the appointment.  Sadly, Trump appointed three conservative justices confirmed by a Republican majority in the Senate.
  • Speaking of Mitch McConnell, I read in a biography of Nina Totenberg, a close friend of the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg that McConnell would not allow Justice Ginsburg to lie in state in the Senate Chamber.  She did lie in state in the House chamber.  McConnell did not have the decency to pay respects to her.  He is 82 years old and hopefully will retire soon.
  • George Santos should have been expelled from the House as soon as it was revealed that he lied about his credentials to the voters.  The Republicans would not expel him for nearly a year.
I could go on and on about political polarization, but i will close here.

Sunday, February 18, 2024

Big Man in Town by the Four Seasons - My Favorite Big Song

 


Ten days ago I stated that Little Children by Billy J. Kramer was my favorite "Little" song.  Let me go in the other direction and choose Big Man in Town by the Four Seasons as my favorite "Big" song.

Friday, February 16, 2024

The Way We Were by Barbra Streisand - Song for a Sad Anniversary

 

Memories
Like the corners of my mind
Misty watercolor memories
Of the way we were
Scattered pictures
Of the smiles we left behind
Smiles we gave to one another
For the way we were

Can it be that it was all so simple then?
Or has time rewritten every line?
If we had the chance to do it all again
Tell me, would we, would we,
Could we, could we?

Memories
May be beautiful and yet
What's too painful to remember
We simply choose to forget
Can it be that it was all so simple then?
Or has time rewritten every line?
If we had the chance to do it all again
Tell me, would we, would we,
Could we, could we?

Memories
May be beautiful and yet
What's too painful to remember
We simply choose to forget
So it's the laughter
We will remember
Whenever we remember
The way we were

The way we were
I miss you baby
The way we were
The way we were
I miss you so much baby
I miss the way we were

Wednesday, February 14, 2024

There was a Vote in Congress to Abolish the Electoral College in 1969


I have expressed my displeasure with the Electoral College in this journal and on X (formerly Twitter).  Should we have 1 election or 51 elections?  Why should a candidate with less popular votes win the election?  It would require a vote of 2/3 in the House and the Senate followed by ratification by 38 state legislature.  This would never happen in today's political climate. Until today, I was only aware of New York Times journalist Gail Collins speaking out against this dinosaur from our constitution.  I just wish that some Senators or Representatives would bash it.

I found out today from a History Channel website that in 1969 the House of Representatives by a wide margin voted to abolish it, but a filibuster in the Senate led by Southerners killed the bill.  Even if the Senate passed the resolution, 38 state legislatures must approve it.

I also found out about the book Let the People Pick the President: The Case for Abolishing the Electoral College written by Jesse Wegman, a member of the New York Times editorial board.  Back in 1968 80% of Americans felt the president should be elected by popular vote.  How many would want that today?

 

Monday, February 12, 2024

I Won a Basketball Autographed by Jalen Brunson of the New York Knicks

 


A few weeks ago the Garden of Dreams Foundation had a fundraising drive on New York Knick telecasts.  Donors were entered into a drawing for various prizes to incentivize people to participate.  I won the Jalen Brunson autographed basketball, as seen above.  I rarely enter contests and I am not an autograph hound.

Oldie of the Day - No Sugar Tonight by the Guess Who


 I heard No Sugar Tonight on Sirius/XM this morning.

Saturday, February 10, 2024

Are Readers of My Journal Interested in Dick Tracy Cartoons?

 

This video includes 16 episodes of the Dick Tracy cartoon series

Back in the early 1960s Channel 11 in NYC showed Dick Tracy cartoons with Chief Joe Bolton as the host.  It has not been seen on TV in several decades since the episodes are politically incorrect with ethnic stereotypes.

In March 2015 I posted an entry Mumbles was My Favorite Dick Tracy Villain .  In nine years this post has been hit 1,930 times, the 12th most popular article in the history of this journal. Why?  Are my readers big fans of the Dick Tracy cartoons?

Thursday, February 8, 2024

Little Children by Billy Jay Kramer and The Dakotas - My Favorite Little Song

 This morning's Question of the Day on WFuv was songs with tiny, small, little or the like in the lyrics.  Host Corny o"Connell packed the following four:

  • Wilson Pickett "Mini-Skirt Minnie"
  • Chuck Prophet "Smallest Man in the World"
  • Elton John "Tiny Dancer"
  • Susan Tedeschi "Little by Little"
My favorite is Little Children by Billy J. Kramer and the Dakotas.



Tuesday, February 6, 2024

Kudos to the NYPD and Queens DA Melinda Katz for Removing Illegal E-Scooters and E-Bikes

 


There was an excellent story on NY1 News last night by reporter Justine Re on the efforts by the  NYPD and Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz to remove e-scooters and e-bikes.  Their major concern was the use of these vehicles to commit crimes.  For example, an e-bike will approach someone and steal his cell phone.

I am concerned with their menace to pedestrians and automobiles.  These creeps drive on sidewalks with little regard for walkers.  It is impossible to hear a bicycle or scooter if it is behind you.  I have had a few calls with those vehicles almost hitting me.  If they do hit a pedestrian, they would just drive away.  These cyclists disregard traffic lights and stop signs when they are on the streets.  Of course, there is the issue of the lithium-ion batteries causing fires.

This will continue to be a problem especially since e-bikes are used to deliver food.  There certainly cannot be a police officer on every block to regulate e-bikes and scooters.  I thank them for doing their best to combat this problem.

Sunday, February 4, 2024

Random Thoughts of the Day February 4, 2024


Occasionally, I listen to podcasts, but many are just too long.  Do people want to listen for an hour or more?  I wish podcasters would limit their discussions to 30 minutes.

I don't understand why people want to start chats with strangers that are quite intense for a day or so and then all of a sudden just die out.  I have had several such chats with young Asian women.  I don't understand why they pick me.  I always advise them of my age and status.

I appreciate the enthusiasm of my radio friends who are chart enthusiasts.  Back in the day, I would follow the surveys of WABC and WMCA and root for my favorite songs to move up the charts.  I remember statements from two famous radio personalities:

Murray the K - If you enjoy a song, why should you care about what number it is.

Jerry Blavat (The Geator) - I play from my heart not by the charts.

 

Saturday, February 3, 2024

I'm Gonna Love You Too - My Favorite Buddy Holly Song


It is 65 years ago today that we lost Buddy Holly, J. P. Richardson (The Big Bopper), and Richie Valens in a terrible plane crash in Iowa.  Their music lives on after all these years.  In the mid-1960s, a TV show called Hullaballoo featured the popular music of the day.  There was a house band called the Hullaballoos that covered I'm Gonna Love You Too.




 

Thursday, February 1, 2024

Book Review: In the Form of a Question: The Joys and Rewards of a Curious Life by Amy Schneider

 


Sometimes, I like to use a public library the old-fashioned way by perusing the stacks.  Since the branch library in my neighborhood is very small, my expectations are minimal. A few days ago I found In the Form of a Question: The Joys and Rewards of a Curious Life by Amy Schneider in the new books section.  Since Amy won 40 games on Jeopardy, I had to take out this book.  Amy is also transgendered.

I expected much of the book to be devoted to her long run on Jeopardy, but it emphasized her sexual issues.  She did not use a chronological method in writing her autobiography.  It is confusing not knowing the gender while reading the book.  She added numerous non-bibliographic footnotes that were very distracting and did not enhance the text.

I admire Amy for her courage in making the transition from a man to a woman.  I wish more of the book was devoted to her exceptional run on Jeopardy.

 
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