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It’s a downright, Balmy morning in ChiTown, with an ABOVE-freezing temp of 33-degrees at 8:20 AM in the morning! Our NE right-coasters had some of our Schlitzy-weather, while down south it’s in the 60s; mid-50s in northern and southern California and low-50s in our fave-town, where we’ll be in a few weeks.


A February Heat Wave?

A February Heat Wave?

Read an interesting item in t’day’s S-T about some of our local power-plant cooling-lakes will open for “open-water” fishing on March 1st, a week-and-a-half from now. Trouble is, the shores will probably be covered with a couple feet of snow and ice, as well as the fact that boat launch-ramps may also be iced over. Some may be reading this and wondering, “Who the eff would do that?” Ahem, one “effer’s” is typing these words. I recall making the 2-hour ride out to the La Salle Nuclear power plant several years ago with one of my bros. The air-temp was around 20-degrees but the water at the ramp was 62 and the closer we got to the warm-water discharge the warmer it got, reading 72 at the closest point. As we raced across the lake…why, I have no idea as no one else was on the lake…I’d felt the hood on my sweatshirt becoming “hard”. Turns out, the spray from breaking through a wave was freezing on contact with it.


Oh yeah, we caught around a dozen: some white bass; largemouth and smallmouth and lost a real nice hybrid striper at boatside.


That said, I was young and stupid then. I’ve changed since…I’m old now.


OK, let’s get started….



-Let’s see what’s what on this date from and, shall we?


1473,   Polish-heretic, Nichols Copernicus, was born. “No, Your Holiness. The Sun does not revolve around the Earth; the Earth revolves around the Sun.” “You are ex-communicated!”


1683,   Philip V, King of Spain was born. Remember my references to the guys who were “lucky to be king(s)”? He’s one.


1701,   Philip V, King of Spain made his ceremonial entrance to Madrid, leaving Toledo and Segovia to whatever the fates would hold for them as former capitals. Again, the dude was super lucky he was King.


1847,   Rescuers finally reached the Donner Party trapped in the Sierra Nevada mountains. No, no one asked anyone to “pass a drumstick”.

1861,   Tsar Alexander II abolished serfdom, so no more: “Let’s go serfin’ now! Everybody’s learnin’ how! Come on a serfari with me!”


1906,   W. K. Kellogg founded the Battle Creek Toasted Corn Flake Co. and breakfasts were never the same.


1913,   “Buy me some peanuts and Cracker Jack”! The first “prize” was packed inside a box of Cracker Jack.


1925,   “Silent” Cal Coolidge suggested the phasing out of the inheritance tax.


1926,   Princeton Prof. Lane estimated the age of the earth at 1,000,000,000-years. No word if a Georgia-Senate hopeful said that was, “…a lie straight out of hell”, or not.


1940,   The songwriter who gave us “You Better Shop Around”, “The Tracks of My Tears” among others, Smokey Robinson, was born.

1965,   14 Vietnam War protestors were arrested for blocking the entrance to the UN in New Yawk City. Ah! The good old days when a protest was a protest.



“Cullerton to GOP gov hopefuls: How would you fill budget hole?” This is an ironically, ironic, irony, in that he and his party, DaDEMS, have run things for the past 11-years but haven’t done anything constructive to “fill” that “hole”, either. That does not excuse these guys, though. Much like Mittsy, when asked the same type of question, their responses were: “…pure politics”; “…I wish he was concerned about Pat Quinn presenting his budget…”; another, “…this was pure politics”, and “…is concerned about the budget and who will monitor the situation”. All, non-responsive-reponses. Not that DaMightyQuinn has anything to really run on. But as in ’12, ya can’t just stand and throw stones at the other guy when yer livin’ in a glass house.


“Unions stand together against pension cuts”. Having several family members who have dutifully made their pension contributions…paycheck after paycheck…without fail…year in and year out…who are now being told their elected officials have decided to act like deadbeat-debtors and try to evade their responsibilities, in many instances as they don’t want to rile up their local constituents. So, these folks now must consider having their pensions cut. We’re not talking about the folks rakin’ high 5-figure annual dollars. Uh-uh. Most are getting in the neighborhood of $1400.00 to $1800.00/month. Also, because many are civil employees, do not get Social Security. Yes, I know, they didn’t contribute. The point is, like any creditor who supplied their end of a deal, they did while the deadbeats who took it all now claim because of their mal-or-misfeasance, can’t honor their commitment(s) and we’re supposed to feel sorry for them. F-them and the horse(s) they rode in on.


“Spit detects depression”. That one’s yours ta complete. “Pa-tooey!” Man! I’m depressed!”


“Former Congressman In Trouble In Africa”. The “former-congressman” is one, Mel Reynolds, who succeeded ClubFed inductee, Rep. Gus Savage and preceded J-Cubed, all 2nd District reps, who is now in custody in Zimbabwe on charges of pornography. He went to Club Fed, for among other things, having a sexual relationship with a 16-year-old girl. Good to see that even a half-a-world away, a slime’s still a slime.


“Charge: 2 denied drinks caused $700,000.00 damage”. This is a good news bad news story. The bad news is contained in the headline. The good is…and I know it’s not nice…that it happened in The Donald’s “Trump Tower”. Nothing about any “damages” to that awful comb-over, though. That’s the “bad news”.


“Dillard, Brady spar; Rauner apologizes”. These are 3 of the 4 GOPerGuber candidates, who much like ’12s GOPer PrezPrado candidates, have sinned against Ronnie’s “11th Commandment”: “Thou shalt not speak ill of any fellow-Republicans”.

Again, there is a weak incumbent but listening to these guys, none have said anything of any substance as to how they would change anything, other than the usual pointless-platitudes. Rather, they’re running neg-ads which don’t really speak well for or about any of them. Even the S-T has semi-sided with Cullerton’s question in their editorial, today, by demanding just what any of them WOULD do to close the budget hole.


“Dems backing outsiders denied voter data”. Don’t worry. Our local Dems ain’t doin’ much, neither. If they don’t toe the party line, they don’t get access to “voter-data”, which County Ward Committeemen keep. Nice, huh?


“Minimum-Wage Trade-Off: Less Poverty, Fewer Jobs”. Y’know, just once, I’d like to see something from D.C. that addresses the exporting of good-paying, decent jobs overseas and somehow stemming, if not stopping, that.


“Boeing picks wing site” In his book, Airframe”, Michael Crichton detailed the whys and wherefores of the location of an aircraft-assembly plant…here or overseas. Life mimicked art. BTW, it’s Everett, Wa.


“Johnny Sprockets shifting gears to Andersonville”. This one’s in here as it’s near the “old neighborhood”. Am confused and hope for some help from my old pals who recall what used to be at 5434 N. Clark Street. I’m thinking it was Calo Bowl. You guys?


“Nuke-protesting nun to prison”. “An 84-year-old nun was sentenced  to nearly 3-years in prison for breaking into a nuclear weapons complex…”. Her request at sentencing was: “Please have no leniency with me.” You tell ‘em, Sister!


“Mass killer demands better video games, gym”. To paraphrase an oldie but a goodie: “…and people in Hell would like a glass of water”.


“Burglar leaves his wallet behind”. “Authorities say a teenager who burglarized a Dallas police officer’s apartment, taking his service weapon and ammunition, was apprehended after he lost his wallet as he fled”.

I’ll close this section on that happy note.





Appy-polly-logies for not mentioning that “Ben-Hur” was on TCM last night. With some foolin’ around, I was able to isolate the “Chariot Race” and DVR’d it. This film was made in ’59, with some FX and what was then called, “trick-photography” but no CGI, period. It’s still cool. The pounding hoofbeats; the roars of the crowd for Judah, the Jew, to defat Mesalla, the Roman Tribune. The intensity of the race on the drivers’ faces; the “crash crews” who only had the time it took the chariots to complete the final turn of a circuit before they were bearing down on them.


That and the story of how we’re supposed to not let hate overtake us. Though, Judah does get his revenge, he sees that it is/was wrong and he takes after the “Young Rabbi” as Jesus is referred to in the story.


“TNT has “Cowboys and Aliens” at 7-Central, tonight. Before we go all, “Like that’ll ever happen” in the old west, why not? After all, how much more of a stretch is it to imagine aliens planning on taking over De Oit in the 1870s as opposed to the 1970s?

Daniel Craig, “James Bond”, is OK, as is Harrison Ford.


AMC has “The Departed”. It’s in a 3-1/2 hour time slot. Plenty of time for “john-calls”.



“AMC has “Duck Dynasty”. MBH has taken a liking to “Wahlburgers”, which is a “reality show” about the Wahlbergs, namely Donny and Mark, who are in the burger-biz with their bro-Paul and their Mom. It’s OK.


TBS has its usual evening’s worth of “The Big Bang Theory” reruns.


Once The Olympics are done, we’ll probably get back to “our regularly scheduled programming”.









Check, that! Czechs!


That’s about that on The Olies, as don’t want to have to keep making “Spoiler Alerts”.



Happened upon MLB Network show, “’61″, yesterday afternoon. Obviously, there was a lot on the “M & M” boys, Mantle and Maris and their 61 and 54-homer season but that wasn’t all. They went through a few other things as well.


One was on Frank Robinson, who along with his Cincy Reds faced off against the Yanks in that year’s World Series, losing in 5-games. There was a shot of F. Robby, Ernie Banks, Willie Mays and Hank Aaron from the ’61 All-Star Game at Candlestick Park.

You youngins out there may have a better appreciation for us old-farts who say we grew up during MLB’s “Golden Age”. Those four guys…4…f-o-u-r-players hit, among them and them alone, two-thousand five-hundred-thirteen, (2513) homers. No “juiced”baseball nor players, neither.


In the AL, Tigers 1st-baseman, Norm Cash, whom the White Sox had traded away, hit .363. Robertyo Clemente hit .351 to lead the NL. Luis Aparicio stole 51-bases. “Cha-Cha” Orlando Cepda had 142 RBI to lead the NL, while the Orioles Jim Gentile had 141, tied with Maris. Dick Donovan (another former White Sox) had the best ERA with 2.40; Whitey Ford had 25-wins to lead MLB; Koufax had, ahem, 269 strikeouts and Luis Arroyo led MLB with 29-saves. Not many? Remember, that’s when a starting pitcher was EXPECTED to finish what he started.


Here are a few others you may find interesting…


-Sandy Koufax averaged 9.47 strikeouts/9-innings. For the math-challenged, that’s more than a strikeout/inning!


-Frank Lary had 22-complete games. He was followed by Warren Spahn with 21; Koufax and Camillo Pascual tied with 15.


-Lew Burdette had an average of 1.09 walks/9-innings…read that one again and think about what we have now.


-Whitey Ford’s winning percentage was, ahem, .862. That meant YankMes fans who went to YankMe Stadium; on a day he pitched; had an 86.2% chance of seeing a win. Not a bad reason to go to the game.


-Vada Pinson, (how’s THAT for a blast from the past?) had 208-hits. Clemente had 201 and Aaron had 197.


-Mantle and Maris tied for runs scored with 132.


-Norm Cash had an OBP of .487; Mantle’s was .448.


Not bad, huh? Like to see some Sabrmetricians take those stats apart and tell us how they don’t matter.


For instance, Cubs-Savior-In-Waiting, Anthony Rizzo, (whom I like) had 80-RBI; 40-doubles; 23-homers and a.233 B/A last year.



Have heard they are toying with the idea of leading-off with Starlin Castro. Hmmm. Kinda depends on which Starlin shows up; the one who had 207-hits a couple years ago…YES!…or the one who looked like he was “chasin’ butterflies” the way he was waving his bat at any – and every – thing pitchers threw his way…NO!



Arnold, Bill ‘n’ Nick might have something to watch with the newbie-Cubie, Jose Abreu. I may actually tune in some of their games…with the sound off, naturally…



So I throw the ball to Naturally.

No. You throw the ball to Who.


Sorry. Couldn’t resist.


“I don’t know.”

“3rd base!”



This is a very complex issue which I’m not ready to go into now, as my heinie’s gettin’ sore and I’ve about had the course.


Gonna close for now with a nod towards one of the guys from the old neighborhood, whom I learned shuffled off his mortal coil. Here’s hoping there IS a better place, Gizmo.


Have a great day. Enjoy the thaw, ChiTowners and hope all y’all around the U.S. of A. do, too.


Maybe we’ll get to “look down a our rosebushes and remember that any day we can do that instead of looking up at their roots, is a good one.”


HaGooDay. Seeya on Feel-Good-Friday.











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