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A Large Regular



Chris Lynch's slanted view on sports, politics and entertainment. Please send thoughts or comments to chris.lynch@gmail.com



Updated: 2017-10-18T13:03:55.260-04:00

 



The Wim Hof Method

2017-10-18T13:03:55.617-04:00

I'm fascinated by Wim Hof and the Wim Hof Method. The mind-body benefits seem incredible but they're true.
To achieve a zen-like mastery of the cold, all you must do is submit yourself to controlled hyperventilation. Not panicky, gasping breaths, but strong, deep inhalations at a rapid pace (one second in) without a deliberate exhalation (allow some air to leave naturally rather than pushing it out). Fill your lungs and repeat this 30 times. Now comes the tricky part: without force, allow all of the air out of your body and then don’t breathe in again until you sense your body really needs oxygen. Complete another round, aiming to extend the period before you inhale. Then go again. 
On the final round, after expelling all the air from your lungs, Hof encourages participants to complete a round of press-ups. Not as a display of masochism, but rather to demonstrate the improved muscular endurance that comes from your body being engorged by oxygen – the essential fuel for exertion.
I'm guessing that by "press-up" they means "push-ups".(image)



Windfall

2017-10-18T11:35:31.139-04:00

A "windfall" is a "piece of unexpected good fortune" usually involving money (i.e. "windfall profits"). The term comes from an apple or other fruit being blown down from a tree by the wind. No effort involved in picking a juicy apple was a big deal back in the day I guess.

The origin of words and phrases is just interesting to me.
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Linky Links

2017-10-18T10:47:29.574-04:00

Stuff I found interesting or amusing and thought I'd share.

- A Letter to Jamie Dimon (and anyone else still struggling to understand cryptocurrencies). Long read but worth it if you want to understand Bitcoin.

- Was true in 1931 and still true today

- The day astrophysics changed forever. Neutron-star collision shakes space-time and lights up the sky. Very cool.

- The Clinton and Obama legacies will not be treated well by either close examination or history. Politics (on both sides) continues to sicken me.

- Obama's college transcripts to finally be released - by Wikileaks!?!? Politics continues to sicken me but yet I still can't look away.

- The Yellowstone super volcano continues to scare the shit out of me. Maybe even enough to buy Bitcoin to hedge my post-apocalyptic bet.

- Heh heh - best to end today on a lighter note.

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Flotsam and Jetsam

2017-10-17T10:39:26.569-04:00

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

Not all super heroes wear capes. Texas beer ninja saves beer and takes out woman with a box of nachos... I've heard of a high colonic and can't help but wonder is there also a "low colonic"? And what the heck would that be if a high colonic already involves the anus... Whiskey Smoothie would be a good name for a band (or hangover related diarrhea)... Can you imagine being 9-years old and having already hiked the three major nation's longest hiking trails? I hope this isn't the high point for this kid's life... I have to believe that Barack Obama knew the truth about Bowe Bergdahl all along. That's a stain on his legacy that never should be forgotten... The athleticism involved in this move is nuts!...  In solidarity with the Men's National Team - I too will not be going to the World Cup...

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Linky Links

2017-10-16T12:57:41.173-04:00

Stuff I found interesting or amusing and thought I'd share.

- I'm be Goddamned - maybe Obama did stop the seas from rising! NASA confirms sea levels falling across the globe.

- I was chuckling about this all weekend

- The Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta is on my personal bucket list

- My new favorite US history tidbit

- Trump's Fake Renoir would be a good name for a band

- Great career advice

- Interesting list of books. I've only read one of the books on the list (so far)

- A reminder not to trust any open public Wi-Fi

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The (A)CDC

2017-10-14T00:30:00.676-04:00

The CDC (Center for Disease Control) since it is funded by Federal tax dollars really should be called the American Center for Disease Control. Yes I am advocating for a name change to the ACDC.

Just think of some of the public service announcement possibilities! The ACDC can boast about how effectively they use tax dollars in a spot called "The ACDC - Dirty Diseases Done Dirt Cheap." Or maybe do a commercial geared to a specific disease like, "The ACDC - For those About to Fight Ebola (We Salute You)."

Make it so!

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Chuck Yeager

2017-10-13T18:41:40.648-04:00

allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="280" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/yr02n1b8sUE" width="500">

70-years ago today American icon Chuck Yeager breaks the sound barrier (clip from the movie The Right Stuff). As impressive as that feat was the day before, October 12th, was also the anniversary of another jaw-dropping feat in American history.

On October 12, 1944, Chuck Yeager shot down 5 German planes becoming an "Ace in a Day". 

Incredible feats by an incredible American hero.

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Red Sox Fire John Farrell

2017-10-13T09:06:24.011-04:00

The Boston Red Sox fired manager John Farrell because Red Sox ratings on NESN were down 15% this year. Sure other explanations will be given for the firing but the real reason is because NESN's freaking ratings were down and the clowns who own the Red Sox needed a scapegoat.

I'm not kidding.

John Farrell won the AL East 3 out of 5 years he managed in Boston, beat cancer for a franchise forever linked with battling cancer (the Jimmy Fund and Boston Red Sox are synonymous in New England) and HE WON A WORLD SERIES. His job should have been safe if he worked for more stable owners anywhere else in any other sport.

But the Red Sox have the least stable (and likable) ownership of all the four major sports franchises in Boston. Theo Epstein and Terry Francona should still be here and be historically somewhere between the duos of Danny Ainge and Brad Stevens with the Celtics and the all-time great duo of Brady and Belichick (no first names or team citation needed). But no - ownership needed a perceived scapegoat then too!

It will be said that GM Dave Dombrowski wanted "his own man" as manager and that's true to an extent. But the only reason Red Sox ownership let him make this move is because ratings at NESN were down 15% this year. If the rating were flat or down just a couple points - John Farrell would still be managing.

I don't care to engage in everyone's favorite new game of "who will be the next Red Sox manager" but I will make one prediction - rating at NESN will be down another 15% next year too.

Because Red Sox ownership doesn't get it and probably never will. 

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Joke of the Day

2017-10-13T00:30:24.317-04:00

Heh heh.
Bill worked in a pickle factory. He had been employed there for a number of years when he came home one day to confess to his wife that he had a terrible compulsion. He had an urge to stick his penis into the pickle slicer. His wife suggested that he should see a sex therapist to talk about it, but Bill said he would be too embarrassed. He vowed to overcome the compulsion on his own. One day a few weeks later, Bill came home and his wife could see at once that something was seriously wrong. "What's wrong, Bill?" she asked. "Do you remember that I told you how I had this tremendous urge to put my penis into the pickle slicer?" "Oh, Bill, you didn't!" she exclaimed. "Yes, I did." he replied. "My God, Bill, what happened?" "I got fired." "No, Bill. I mean, what happened with the pickle slicer?" "Oh...she got fired too."
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Linky Links

2017-10-12T23:00:59.155-04:00

Stuff I found interesting or amusing and thought I'd share.

- The Real Fighters by Shawn Thornton. Another example why hockey players are the best

- Interesting - octopus inspired materials might be the next big thing

- I for one welcome our robot overlords

- But I thought the science on nutrition was settled?

- Holy crap! How is either of these guys still standing at the end of this?

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Public Service Announcement

2017-10-12T00:30:32.309-04:00

Experts say putting ice cubes up the rectums of unconscious people has no physiological benefit and can even lead to seizures and stroke.


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State of the Red Sox - Part 1

2017-10-11T11:06:20.718-04:00

So to really nobody's surprise the Red Sox season came to an end at the hands of the Houston Astros. Boston fans are spoiled so just winning the AL East and making the playoffs isn't considered nearly enough. Therefore you've heard the hue and cry to fire manager John Farrell and make lots of changes. That shouldn't happen and I really don't think it will. That said - what changes would I suggest to make the 2018 Red Sox better than the 2017 version?

Boston is set at starting outfield with Mookie Betts, Andrew Benintendi, and Jackie Bradley Jr. They are young, affordable and with tremendous upside as a group. The team is also set at both catcher with Christian Vazquez (and Sandy Leon) and at third with 20-year old Rafael Devers. There's also 2-more years left to determine if Xander Bogaerts is actually their long term solution at short.

That leaves first base, DH, utility roles and surprisingly second base as question marks for 2018.

Do the Red Sox open the checkbook to try and sign Eric Hosmer as a free agent to fill their first base need? That's the big question. If not Hosmer do they bring back Mitch Moreland? How about moving AAAA 28-year old slugger Bryce Brentz to first? He hit 31 HR in 450 AB for Pawtucket and he's right handed. I don't think that'll happen either. Maybe a trade instead? What will happen at first will be the big question for Boston fans this offseason.

Another big question is DH. Hanley Ramirez is due $22 million next season but can the Red Sox really give another 600 AB to a guy with just 23 HR, a .750 OPS and expect to go further than the first round of the playoffs? I don't think so either. Another big consideration is Hanley's $22 million 2019 option that vests with just 497 plate appearances next year. Nobody wants to see that happen. Again - do they try to solve this with a free agent like JD Martinez? Or would that money be better spent solving the issue with first base?

For utility outfielder the Occam's Razon solution would be to promote Rusney Castillo from Pawtucket. You really can't bury him there another season and Boston has him on the books for almost $12 million anyway. Why not give him a role and some AB with the big club?

For utility infielder I think most people will agree it's time to end the Brock Holt experience. Yes he's scrappy and will play whatever position you ask him to. Also true that he's dangerously close to not hitting his weight (and he's just 180-pounds!). The easy solution is to re-sign Eduardo Nunez especially given the question marks about Dustin Pedroia's knee.

Speaking of Pedroia. Hard to believe but his redass, dirt-dog style is wearing very thin on Boston fans. And his hometown discount contract is no longer seen as such a big plus. He's under contract for 4-more years but will his balky knee allow him to warrant a starting role for more than 1 or 2 more seasons? It is not going to end well in Boston for Pedroia.

Next time I'll take a look at the pitching and coaching staff.

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King of Spades

2017-10-11T00:30:23.684-04:00

Did you know that the King of Spades on a playing card was originally supposedly designed to represent King David from the Bible? The sword he holds was supposed to be the sword used to cut off Goliath's head after young David killed him with a rock from his his sling.

During the early parts of the Civil War - Robert E Lee was given the nickname "King of Spades" because of his propensity to dig trenches as part of his strategy. At first the nickname was derisive because soldiers hate to dig. Later when the effectiveness of his tactics saved the lives of many of these same soldiers - the nickname became affectionate. Reportedly Lee always loathed the nickname.

And he didn't play cards.

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Something That Always Bothered Me

2017-10-10T00:30:17.168-04:00

Couple of years ago there was an AXE shampoo commercial that claimed that 85% of girls found dandruff on a man to be a turn-off. What the heck was wrong with that other 15% of women polled?

Did they find dandruff on a man to be a turn on? I mean it seems like it was a yes or no type of poll.

Given the profitability of niche marketing - shouldn't AXE have been marketing fake dandruff to men trying for sexy time with that 15% of women by now?

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Flotsam and Jetsam

2017-10-09T10:36:48.186-04:00

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

Cool - an oral history of Batman: The Animated Series... Nut Byproducts would be a good name for a band... Speaking of Batman - my idea of great art... I still say my first move as President would be to make Bill Belichick my Press Secretary. Those press briefings would be epic... Why is it "Happy as a clam?" Is it because clams don't have any brains or feelings?... Don't forget to get your flu shots... One of my deepest fears is of fire-breathing koalas. Wheh! Feels good to get that off my chest. Now let the healing begin... Women wearing nothing but milk. Milk was a good choice... Every time I find a dead fruit fly in the head of my beer I think, "that's the way he wanted to die"... Awesome - the Traveling Jagr's... Happy Columbus Day...

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Put Joe Biden in the Movie Title

2017-10-09T00:30:11.953-04:00

I amused myself by replacing part of some of the greatest movie titles of all-time with Joe Biden. Some of these movies actually should be made:- The Good, the Bad and the Joe Biden- The Silence of the Joe Biden- Forrest Gump- Joe Biden 2: Judgement Day- Joe Biden of Arabia- Eternal Sunshine of the Joe Biden- Joe Biden: A Space Odyssey- Inglorious Joe Bidens- Mr. Joe Biden Goes to Washington- Cool Hand Joe Biden[...]



NFL Sunday - Week Five

2017-10-08T09:33:57.837-04:00

The Jetsons might have nailed the future of the NFL when back in 1962 they envisioned that football in the future would be played by robots. You don't have to worry about robots saying something stupid about women reporters and the word "route". You also don't have to worry about fans getting angry at a robot protesting during the national anthem. Nobody will care if a robot damages his dome with a big hit. And biggest of all - you don't have to pay robots massive salaries.

With drone racing gaining in popularity, E-sports being the new next big thing, and sex robots becoming so realistic - things seem to be aligning for a future that includes robots replacing human beings as the gridiron gladiators. In the future maybe MIT vs Cal Tech will be the biggest rivalry in college football.

Anyway - looking at today's slate of NFL games one is reminded of a dumpster fire. But hey - who are we kidding? We are going to watch the games and if we are going to watch a sporting event - money will be wagered. Here's my picks for today (I hope you are betting against me every week):

Buffalo +3 at Cincinnati - buy the half point for +3.5 because this game feels like it will be settled by a field goal. 

Tennessee -1 at Miami - two words "Jay Cutler"

San Francisco +2 at Indianapolis - I'm taking three road teams? No wonder my record is 2-8 for the season.

Good luck.

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The Nobel Prize in Physics

2017-10-07T10:08:43.797-04:00

The Nobel Prize in Physics has been awarded to the LIGO team for proving gravitational waves exist. Brian Greene explains both what gravitational waves are and also why this is so important.

allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/s06_jRK939I" width="560">

Meanwhile Eddie Yong explains why the award didn't really go to the LIGO "team" but only to Rainer Weiss, Kip Thorne, and Barry Barish. All well deserving but the question remains - what about the rest of the team? I agree that's its time to make changes to how the Nobel Prize is awarded in science.

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Linky Links

2017-10-05T09:22:10.109-04:00

Stuff I found interesting or amusing and thought I'd share.

- 31-years ago today the best call by a referee in NFL history

- Oooh - sick burn

- Lefsetz has his Tom Petty play list and commentary and it's pretty damn good.

- Charging (no pun intended) for empty seats is a business model doomed to fail (and I'm still calling them the San Diego Chargers)

- I love Monopoly Guy!

- I want one of these! But is 7 MPG practical for a wilderness RV?

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A Modest Proposal to Fix NCAA Sports

2017-10-05T07:34:10.062-04:00

The sports world is waiting for the other shoe (or other sneaker in this case) to drop in the "NCAA basketball corruption scandal". So far 10 individuals have been charged with crimes by the FBI and a number of others have already lost their jobs including Louisville coach Rick Pitino (that's how Boston Celtics fans remember him looking like).

It is expected that some of the 10 already charged (maybe even all of the 10 already charged) will start "naming names" and when that happens - whoo-boy get the popcorn out! I mean who doesn't like staring at a good trainwreck? You've got shady AAU individuals, sneaker company money, coaches of flexible morals and University administrators willing to look the other way as long as the wins greatly outnumber the losses and the boosters are happy. All the makings of a great mini-series drama unfolding in real life.

Well I've got a modest proposal to fix this mess and it's quite simple and straightforward. Take away the tax-exempt status of college sports.

College sports is big business. Everyone knows this. Why not simply treat it as such? If colleges and universities had to pay taxes on all sports related revenue (ticket sales, TV and radio contracts, merchandise sales, etc) - which I argue is a very fair proposition - then IRS reporting and the rules that govern normal business behavior would take care of the rest. And by normal rules I mean little things like businesses actually paying their employees. 

There's an underground economy in college sports of AAU individuals, shady agents, crooked coaches and sneaker company employees all engaging in win at all costs behavior. Making college sports taxable will expose these dealings to the sunlight and at the same time get rid of the most unsavory characters (like a Rick Pitino - I hold a grudge). It would be similar to how legalizing pot in Colorado got rid of the midnight deal in Denny's parking lots and replaced it with well-lit storefronts with coffee and pastry (or so I've heard - haven't been to Colorado in a long time). 

Follow the logic to my argument. If college sports lost their tax exempt status then they would have to pay taxes and follow the IRS rules that every other business has to follow. This includes paying "employees" (aka "student-athletes"). If a student athlete was getting paid then there would no no reason for the best of them NOT to have an agent. Legitimate agents will send the sketchy guys now trying to make a buck back under the rocks from whence they slithered.

You could even sell this politically. Say that the monies raised from taxing college sports will specifically be used to fund military personnel taking advantage of the GI College Bill with any excess funds being used to pay down the national deficit. 

So let it be written. So let it be done.
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Flotsam and Jetsam

2017-10-04T08:41:45.097-04:00

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

I find it hard to believe that the Founding Fathers who grew hemp did not know about the "medicinal" qualities of the female plant... I can't imagine the emotion the holder of this ticket experienced during and after the final play of Monday night's Chiefs game... Ornamental Gargoyles would be a good name for a band of ugly guys... Moving the Chargers to LA was a huge mistake... Too bad that Wrongheaded Mystical Enthusiasm is too long to use as a fantasy football team name... A buttload is an actual unit of measure. Who knew?... God bless Mitch Trubisky...

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Tom Petty Linky Links

2017-10-03T10:48:40.089-04:00

Sad day as rock legend Tom Petty has passed away.

- George Harrison, Tom Petty and Ukuleles

- Everyone is mentioning their favorite Tom Petty song. There's so many to choose from but mine is Running Down a Dream

- Speaking of Running Down a Dream - if you want to know the history of Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers I highly recommend the documentary Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers: Running Down a Dream

- When George Harrison passed away Tom Petty led a star studded tribute of While My Guitar Gently Weeps. The song featured one of the great guitar solos of all-time by Prince.

Who is going to lead the tribute to Tom Petty? And what song will they choose?

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Tom Petty

2017-10-03T10:03:41.570-04:00


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NFL Sunday - Week Four

2017-10-03T10:50:52.522-04:00

In the NFL vs Trump - Trump won. It's that simple.

Or is it? The playing of the National Anthem and the American flag since 9/11 have been associated with supporting the military. Our volunteer military. Disrespecting the anthem is the same in many eyes as disrespecting the sacrifice of our men and women in uniform. That doesn't sit well with most people. The NFL learned this lesson loud and clear last week.

People are sick of being preached to. News channels with a certain bias - click! I have other things to do. Hollywood movies with a liberal message? No thanks I'll stay home instead. Concerts where the singer decides they will preach their political message instead of singing the hits? Fuck you - shut and sing. A sporting event where the players disrespect the flag? Let me see how loudly I can Boooo!

Football has become better to watch on TV than in person for many reasons. Having the teams protesting during the National Anthem is one more reason for people not to go. Going to the games in person are no longer a must-experience event. But games on TV basically make the NFL a long running TV series. People eventually get sick of watching TV series - no matter how much they love the series. I stopped watching The Simpsons and South Park not because I stopped enjoying watching but because both had been on the TV for so damn long. Could the NFL become another TV series people get sick of watching?

The NFL has been tone deaf for at least the entire tenure of Roger Goodell. I can't think of a CEO of a Fortune 500 company who has had a worse record. Handling of BountyGate? Alienated the New Orleans fans. Handling of domestic violence? Yeah right. DeflateGate? Patriots fans HATE Roger Goodell (I'm Exhibit A). San Diego moving so LA could have two team? I think the half-filled soccer stadium for Chargers games speaks for itself on how that's working. I can't believe Roger Goodell hasn't been fired.

Anyhow - here's my picks for today:

Patriots -9 vs Panthers - taking the Pats. (Also I teased the Pats to -3 with the over in the game down to 42.5 points.)

Jaguars -3 at Jets - Jacksonville just seems like the much better team.

2-6 for the season. Maybe the time has come for you to start taking the other side on all my picks? Or is today the point my record starts turning around?

Good luck.

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Linky Links

2017-09-30T10:32:29.687-04:00

Stuff I found interesting or amusing and thought I'd share.

- Heh heh

- NBA says all teams must stand for National Anthem. How long before Trump takes credit?

- Dick Cheney was right about North Korea

- Could low-carb diets be better for patients than antipsychotic medications?

- Great life advice

- Heh heh

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