Saturday, November 18, 2006

Late Night (or early morning) Ego Surfing

I started this blog so people could figure out my schedule back in the Summer of 2005. I have kept it up so my family and friends wouldn’t have to do without random ramblings after I moved to Pittsburgh (whether this is truely a service to the ones I love is highly debatable). Given the public nature of the internet I figured the blog might have been stumbled upon by a few other people, perhaps even linked to in a place or two, but I never bothered to check. Until tonight.

I just did a little search of my blog’s name on Google and found a few links. Most were law school friends and the like, however there was one surprise. My favorite sports blog, and probably the best sports blog on the internet, linked to my June 24th post on the utterly hilarious Miami Heat championship celebration. Here’s Deadspin’s post linking back here to my humble blog. To put into perspective why I think this is so cool, if you search the term “Sports blog” on Google Deadspin will be the 4th page listed. Anyway, I guess I can cross “get referenced by one of my favorite blogs” off my list of things to do before I die. I'm also wondering if this counts as a fulfillment of my childhood dream of becoming a sports writer.

Friday, November 17, 2006

Simple Economics

Sony released the Playstation 3 today and it resulted in violence among those waiting in line to get a system. People want a PS3 so bad that they are paying around $2,000 per system on Ebay. Sony is only charging $600 for a product that has people charging electronics stores like crazed mobs. Also Sony is losing $300 on every system sold.

I may be just a lowly law student, but something’s wrong here. I understand Sony’s economic model, they’ll make up all the money lost on these new systems with the sale of video games and accessories to go with the system. It’s the same economic model used by all video game manufacturers and is always wildly profitable for Sony. Even though this model works I just hate to see a company leave money on the table. Sony, since there are more than enough people willing to pay you $2,000 for your system, how about pricing it so you at least break even on release day next time. You’ll save yourself some money and might save the lives of some gamers.

While we're on the topic of video games I'll take the time to state that the next system I buy will be Nintendo's Wii. Sony and Microsoft have released 2 impressive systems, but the Wii's controllers and gameplay look like they'll be the most revolutionary thing to hit video games since the first Playstation. Here's the Wii's official website so you can see what I'm so excited about.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

New Rocky Preview

There's a new preview up for Rocky 6 . I know there's a long line of people waiting to take shots at this movie just because it's the sixth in the series, but it looks like it's going to be great. For anyone who thinks that the plot is too far fetched just look at the current heavyweight division and tell me that it wouldn't be possible for a guy over 50 to still be a contender.

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Pata & Politics

Rest In Peace Bryan Pata:
Since the last post UM’s football season got a lot worse, it didn’t get worse because of something as meaningless as a loss to Maryland, it got worse in a way that actually matters as defensive lineman Bryan Pata was murdered in his apartment’s parking lot. Pata was one of the few Canes who had actually improved his NFL Draft status this year, more importantly he sounded like a really good guy. I don’t just mean that people have been saying great things about him because he died, you can’t just make up on the spot the amount of praise his friends and family heaped on him in the media.
Also, I’d like to commend 2 other universities on handling Pata’s murder with particular class over the weekend. First off, the University of Maryland held a moment of silence before their game with Miami, as well as wearing the same #95 tribute stickers on their helmets as the Canes had. On top of that the Maryland football players gave their per diem pay for gameday food to the Pata family in a truely classy act. The other schoold that deserves to be commended is Florida State. They also wore the #95 stickers in tribute to Pata during their game with Wake Forrest. Pata’s brother is a walk on senior on FSU’s team.

So, at a time like this when even arch rivals are putting aside their differences I figured the media would take a temporary break from characterizing the U with stereotypes that haven’t been relevant for a decade. To the media’s credit I must admit that they did do this, with one classless exception. Before Pata’s mom had the chance to bury her son Mike Celizic of MSNBC wrote an article about how this incident would serve as a great time for the University of Miami to reevaluate itself and the kids it recruits. The problem is that we’ve already done that, 10 years ago, and we were successful in becoming the best team in the nation (until recently) while also having the least off the field incidents of any powerhouse team in America. For example:
-We just came off of a 4 stint of having no players arrested, sadly most decent teams can’t make that claim.
-Our 2005 team graduated 21 players, that was a total higher than any other team.
-Our 2004 graduation rate was 84%, the national average was 58%.
Despite all this there’s still at least one guy in the media who finds it necessary to take shots at a program that has become the example of what all major college football programs should strive to be and at a time when the team is still grieving their teammate and friend. It’s things like this that make me wish we didn’t even bother to clean up the program in the first place, at least then we’d deserve the rebuke the media loves to heap on us.
Before I finish this rant here are a couple of links you should check out. First, Celizic’s article can be found here.
And, more importantly here’s an interview with Celizic on the Dan Le Batard show. Dan basicly lets the guy know how stupid he is, so it’s good listening.

I’ve got a few things to say about the elections, but I’ll try to keep them short.

-Back to checks and balances:
In Bush’s time as president he has only vetoed one bill. This is in large part due to Republican domination of the House and Senate. Let’s face it, as president when people in your party are sending bills up to you there’s rarely any reason to veto anything, they get their add on spending packages and you get to pass legislation you wanted anyway. My main problem with this lack of vetoes is that it has led to Republicans being able to get any pet spending project passed by putting it into a bill as a rider. Riders will be a problem no matter what party is in power, but having a split in power between the legislative and executive branches should at least slow this down.

-Conservative Democrats:
Wow, you’re really got to hand it to Howard Dean. A lot of people don’t like him, but his plan to wage an election in all 50 states has really made progress. This became truly clear to me when I heard that Heath Shuler had won a seat in the House as a Democrat. This really surprised me because Heath is a Conservative Christian. Sure, the Dems already had some rather conservative people in their party, your Joe Leiberman and the like, but people like Heath are different, he’s spoken in Southern Baptist churches, he’s the quintessential conservative Christian whom you’d expect to have an “R” in front of his name. His social stances read like a Republican platform even. I’m not sure exactly what this means, but I do find the conservative Democrat phenomenon intriguing.

-What difference between the parties?
This observation is linked to the one above. If we’ve got a lot of new Democrats that look like Republicans, and many prominent Republicans who look like Democrats (Arnold, Giuliani) exactly what is it that engenders party loyalty in Republicans and Democrats. It seems more and more like professional sports where you're really just cheering for a uniform and a logo since the players are basically interchangeable.

Saturday, November 04, 2006

Last Chance to Save a Season

UM's game in on national television tonight. In the grand scheme of college football it's a meaningless game. There are no national, conference, or divisional championship ramifications. However for the Canes it is is big game, it's the last chance to save some face. Up to this point we've been a team that couldn't win against a decent opponent and got into a stupid brawl against against a team that is anything but decent. A win tonight against a ranked Virginia Tech team is the only thing that can keep the program relevant. The game just kicked off, here's hoping we see a different team than we've seen up to now.

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Who’s In?

Alright guys, I’ve got a question for you. Who wants to go to California? Why do I aks? Because I have decided that there are times in life when you must seize the moment and do something before the opportunity passes you by. The opportunity I’m referring to is the opportunity to be at a live taping of The Price is Right and possibly even get picked to play. With Bob Barker announcing that he’ll be retiring in June of next year I’ve decided that between now and then I’ve got to get to get to LA and attend a taping. So, who’s in with me?