Saturday, April 21, 2007

Discipline? Drive? Let Me Get Back to You

This is one of those mornings where I have a lot of things to say, so I'll just touch on some of them:

1. Make sure you check L.E. Baskow's nature photograph in the Friday Trib. The young man is a monster photographer. By the way, he took my picture for my column back in the day, but we can't judge him on one bad photograph. (I just looked for the picture online, and couldn't find it. Come on, folks. You've got GOLD here. Am I going to have to call another meeting of the Trib editors? I just found it. Search for "Closer to Home" to see a small version that won't enlarge.)

2. Dusty Baker - who is going to be a great baseball announcer - called it "the World Series in April." The first game between the Yankees and the Red Sox was amazing with the Red Sox scoring 5 runs in the bottom of the 8th to beat the hated Yankees at Fenway Park to win by one. Could it be that Mariano Rivera is losing it at 37? One of the most annoying spectacles over the last decade or so was watching Joe Torre bring in Mariano to close, with that look like he was doing something brilliant. Well, Rivera was fast and accurate but his pitches did not dance and they were not nasty. Result: He blew a three run lead and for the second time in a row he blew a save. Plus a Japanese rookie - not that one, another one - came in and got through the top of the 9th. A-Rod who has been a little too happy with himself after his ridiculous start - including 2 homers in this game - was left cursing after lining out weakly. Great stuff.

3. Finally, my joke last Friday died a horrible death with the band and the host discussing how things had been going so well till this one happened. I apologized to the host's assistant on the phone and tried to blame the whole thing on Friday the 13th, which was kind of funny, but probably not what they were looking for. Last night though, the host was floundering and began discussing the situation again with the band leader. He said basically not to worry, that this next joke would turn the entire monologue around. He went with another one of mine and the audience loved it, the band played, children were named after the joke, and a parade was later held in the joke's honor. I needed that. Not really, but it was nice.

4. Something about the joke has led to a realization that I will get to later in another post. There are laughs that ridicule, there are laughs that say "That was clever", but the most solid laughs are when the audience realizes something is the truth. The joke is funny but it's also right. That's what we had here. I don't want to oversell this but I believe I now know why we are in Iraq, and the driving dynamic behind the entire Bush administration. In short, the Portland Freelancer has now figured out the entire history of America over the last 6 years, and it comes down to one simple theory. Stay tuned.

5. The discipline thing. I have a project right now that means everything to me. I have been working hard on it, but not as hard as I should be. I have a fear of learning new stuff, especially out of manuals the size of books. I also have that inverse caring thing where if it really matters, I avoid it in favor of fun, senseless stuff like blogging. Uh oh. I might have revealed too much. I meant to say, "I am avoiding this important project to continue my vitally important role as the Portland Freelancer." There, that's more like it.

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