The Daily Dose – November 12, 2017

Notes from around the Human Experience…

ELECTION DAY…VOTE EARLY, VOTE OFTEN: We live in a small town. It has a pretty good diner, a bar, a small grocery store and no stop lights. Usual small town stuff.

And we also have a deadlocked election from this past Tuesday with Referendum 3A tied at 427. It’s a tax increase to pay for bonds that would provide matching funds for a potential state grant so the local school district can build new middle and high schools, though there didn’t appear to be any guarantee the local school district would receive the grant.

After the ballots had been counted there were nine ballots whose signatures could not be validated, a total later increased to eleven. I dispatched myself to the courthouse the following day to make sure there wasn’t a problem with mine.

Dry, Technical Matter: There was reason for this. One, a couple of years ago there was a discrepancy with my wife’s signature on her ballot. I  had, thoughtfully though perhaps illegally, signed it for her because she had neglected to. I did this figuring they didn’t check. I  was wrong.

Two, I have a couple of different signatures and I’ve long forgotten which one I  used when I  registered to vote. As it turned out, there wasn’t a problem with my ballot.

Screw The Kids: What’s funny is this measure was one of two tax measures on the ballot and the other one wasn’t even close. Referendum 2A, a tax increase to fund road and sewer plant improvements, passed 325-232. Those of you keeping score at home might note that the numbers show 297 more people voted for 3A than voted for 2A. 

Never Again: What’s funny is my wife and I disagreed on the measures and my wife forgot to vote! You mail in your ballots here – though you can vote in a booth at the county courthouse down the road a spell if you want – and she forgot to drop her ballot off.

For The Record: I dropped off my ballot at the town hall when I paid the water bill. Then I  went to the post office and then to the store, a set of errands that took well less than ten minutes. In a big city it would’ve taken the entire morning.

Please Pass The Dry, Technical Matter: The results won’t be known for a few days. The wizards who can’t sign their name properly have been sent letters and have a few days to hitch up the wagon and go to the courthouse to take of the matter. Supporters of the referendum have said, only half-jokingly, they’d be willing to drive these folks to the courthouse if needed. This was funny because ballots have already been filled out and can’t be changed, so it is entirely possible they’re providing chauffeur services to someone who voted no.

The Bottom Line: Regardless of the race, your vote matters. So vote every single election.

ON THIS DATE! ON THIS DATE!: The bodies of English explorer Robert Falcon Scott and his men, returning from their expedition to the South Pole, are found on the Ross Ice Shelf on this date in 1912.

Scott and four others had reached the South Pole in January only to find that an expedition led by Roald Amundsen had beaten them there. The return journey was not kind and the explorers were forced to spend over a week in their final camp because blizzards made progress impossible.

“I Am Just Going Outside And May Be Some Time.”: Their supplies eventually ran out and their final camp became their graves, except for one explorer who chose to walk outside to his death. A cross marks the site, which is now estimated to have moved about 30 miles from where they actually died.

USA! USA! The Naval Battle of Guadalcanal between the United States and Japan begins in the South Pacific on this date in 1942. It would end three days later in an American victory.

Someone’s Falling On The Sword, Dammit: The loss was devastating to the Japanese. Unable to retake the airfield of provision their troops, many of whom ended up starving, they completed withdrawal from the island the following February.

Great Moments In Freedom Of The Press: The story of the Mai Lai Massacre, a mass killing of unarmed Vietnamese citizens by American troops, becomes public on this date in 1969, in a story by journalist Seymour Hersh. The story was run by the Dispatch News Service (DNS) and appeared in 33 newspapers nationwide. It earned Hersh and DNS the 1970 Pulitzer Prize for International Reporting.

The massacre was committed by elements of the US Army’s 23rd Infantry Division on March 16th, 1968. 26 soldiers were charged with criminal offenses, though only one, platoon leader William Calley, was convicted. Calley was sentenced to life imprisonment, though a judge ordered him released after three-and-a-half years of house arrest.

Quotebook: We took risks…Had we lived, I should have had a tale to tell of the hardihood, endurance, and courage of my companions which would have stirred the heart of every Englishman. – Robert Falcon Scott

Answer To The Last Trivia Question: John Young and Gene Cernan are the other humans besides James Lovell to fly to the moon twice. Young landed as part of Apollo 16 and Cernan, the last human to set foot on the moon, commanded Apollo 17.

Today’s Stumper: Two US Navy admirals died in the Naval Battle of Guadalcanal. Who were they?  – Answer next time!

Share Gaylon! Go!
FacebookTwitterGoogle+StumbleUponRedditPinterestTumblrDiggYahoo BookmarksGoogle BookmarksShare
Posted in The Daily Dose | Leave a comment

The Thought for the Day – Gore Vidal

Atossa was never more splendid than when she was improvising towards some great end.  – Gore Vidal, Creation

Atossa (550 BC-475 BC) was the wife of King Darius the Great of Persia. She was strong-willed, persistent, patient and cunning traits which, along with descendancy from Cyrus the Great, helped her get her son Xerxes the throne after Darius died even though Darius had an older son by another wife. History also noted she had a bleeding lump in one of her breasts, which was eventually removed by a Greek slave.

Life does not always follow a straight or certain path. We might want it to, of course, but in every life, even those that might seem to be fairly well planned out, the straightest course runs into curves, bumps, sharp turns and even switchbacks. To use a football analogy, life sometimes requires some broken field running.

We must be ready for life’s curves. We can’t avoid them and we can’t run from them. We must adapt, and take advantage of the circumstances change affords us.

Our life itself should be our great end and we must be prepared to improvise along the way. We may chase something for many years only to come one day to the end of our interest. Or something may keep our interest over many years, the target unchanging. We’ve had both happen to us. When we were younger we wanted to be a radio announcer. We did it for a few years before finding ourselves laid off and out of the business. We woke up the next morning no longer interested in radio, which surprised us. Then we started writing and we have yet to stop, with many more things we feel must be said before our mind starts to betray us in a couple-three decades.

…when she was improvising towards some great end.

What great end are you improvising for? Be prepared to be flexible. Now, the target we are aiming for should not change. The target comes from deep inside us after all and to change it will not do you or me or anybody else any good.

But how we get there does change and there will certainly be times when we find ourselves improvising. It’s the way the world is built. Embrace it. Improvising keeps your mind alert and is often the foundation of innovation. The arrival at many great ends is often heralded by the trumpets of improvisation.  

The Thought for the Day runs regularly. Quotes are from Gaylon’s private stock.

Share Gaylon! Go!
Posted in The Thought for the Day | Leave a comment

The Daily Dose – Veterans Day, 2017

Notes from around the Human Experience…

TEN HUT!: You know, honestly, we cannot remember Veterans Day being the big deal it is today while growing up. And we come from a family of many veterans.

9/11 changed that, of course, because since 9/11 – when first responders became heroes – the reverence for veterans grew, too. We are routinely thanked for our service now, which never used to happen before 9/11, and on Veterans Day we could scam complimentary meals left and right if moved so to do.

FunFact: We generally don’t go out of our way to do that, though. On the other hand, we don’t throw a tantrum if we find ourselves not presented with a check. 

FunFact II: Like our grandfather Gaylon C Kent, whom we never met, we command our American Legion post.

What A Surprise, Dry, Technical Matter. November 11 has been an American holiday since 1938, born out of the earlier celebrations of the armistice that ended the major fighting in World War I  at 11am on November 11, 1918. Originally known as Armistice Day, it became Veterans Day in 1954.

War Is Hell: Fighting continued right up until the eleventh hour, too. Some units didn’t want to make themselves vulnerable by yielding an advantage while some didn’t want to have to haul their ammo away why others wanted the best possible position should fighting start again. In all, over 2,700 men died on November 11, including a Canadian two minutes before peace took effect and an American at 10:59.  

USA! USA!: Life in the service was pretty routine for most of us. Personally, we served on an old diesel submarine, the USS Blueback, the last diesel combat submarine in the United States Navy. We’re still pretty young and if we get regular exercise and watch between meal treats we one day we might well be the last diesel boat veteran in this country.

Fly In The Ointment: Some, of course, did not serve routine tours. Some died in the service of their country and some contributed exploits we are still talking about today. Some are not entirely pleased with their service and too many are homeless and each day an average of 22 vets will kill themselves, choosing to continue their service on heaven’s parade ground.

The Bottom Line: Looking back at honorable service to your country is one of life’s great prizes. We are the son, brother, grandson, cousin and nephew of veterans and we hardly have an exclusive on that. You’re welcome. It was our privilege.

ON THIS DATE! ON THIS DATE! The first governing document in what would become the United States is signed on board the Mayflower on this date in 1620. Negotiated and signed by the males on board, it sought to maintain order and establish a civil society. 

Oh Yeah: The original Mayflower Compact has been lost, though some copies survive.

Great Moments In Warren G Harding: The Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, also known as the Tomb of the Unknowns, is dedicated at Arlington National Cemetery on this date in 1921 with President Warren G Harding presiding over the ceremony. Congress had authorized the burial of an unknown serviceman at Arlington the previous March but, Congress being Congress, did not bother to fund the completion of the tomb until 1926.

The tomb was first guarded in 1925, by civilians and the military took it over the following year and it has been guarded continuously since 1937. Today the tomb is guarded by soldiers from the Army’s 3rd US Infantry Regiment, colloquially known as the Old Guard.

FunFact III: Tomb Guards walk their post in a uniform devoid of rank, so as not to outrank the Unknowns they are guarding.

3…2…1…Blastoff: Gemini 12, the 18th manned American spaceflight, takes off from Florida on this date in 1966. It was commanded by James Lovell and piloted by Edwin “Buzz” Aldrin.

Among other things, Lovell and Aldrin continued Gemini’s pioneering work on rendezvous and docking and space and Aldrin made three spacewalks. Gemini 12 also showed that a spacecraft could conduct and automated re-entry.

Both Lovell and Aldrin would return to space with Apollo. Lovell was part of Apollo 8, her crew the first humans to see the far side of the moon. Lovell also commanded the ill-fated Apollo 13 mission, making him the only person to fly to the moon twice and not make a landing.

Aldrin was the second human to set foot on the moon, as part of Apollo 11.

Write This Down: The importance of Project Gemini cannot be underestimated. It developed the space travel techniques that provided the foundation for the lunar landings of the Apollo program.

Quotebook:  A very little luck might have carried me to the highest of all prizes or have ended the game. – Winston Churchill, letter to his mother from the Second Boer War, 1897

Answer To The Last Trivia Question: The US Africa Command is headquartered in Stuttgart, Germany.

Today’s Stumper: Who are the other two humans to fly to the moon twice?  – Answer next time!

Share Gaylon! Go!
Posted in The Daily Dose | Leave a comment

On Congress Not Declaring The Wars We Fight

Friends, if a preview of the video does not appear below, please click on the title to watch.

Share Gaylon! Go!
Posted in GaylonTV | Leave a comment

The Bottom Ten/NFL Week 11

The Bottom Ten/NFL Week 11
By Gaylon Kent
America’s Funniest Guy

With the bottom falling out in Denver, and both Green Bay and Houston losing star quarterbacks, the race for The Dan Henning Trophy – symbolic of NFL Bottom Ten supremacy – promises to provide even more of the week in, week out drama Bottom Ten fan(s) have come to expect over the years.

And that doesn’t even factor in the fact there are still two (2) winless teams, which has sent the Bottom Ten pollsters scrambling to see what the Bottom Ten bylaws have to say about a tiebreaker, which they will do as they find the Bottom Ten bylaws.

This week’s fiasco, as the nags continue to limp up the backstretch:

1. San Francisco 49ers (0-9; lost to Arizona 20-10) – With Browns enjoying bye week, Niners get to strut stuff, test-driving B-10 top spot …49ers have lost ten (10) straight and 24 of 25 and are the 31st NFL team to start season 0-9…Next Loss: New York Giants

2. New York Giants (1-7; lost to Los Angeles Rams 51-17) – Giants come back strong from bye week, setting up showdown with 49ers with blowout home loss…Though defense taking bows, offense contributes three (3) turnovers while special teams chips in blocked punt…Next Loss: at San Francisco

3. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2-6; lost to New Orleans 30-10) – Strong start key, as Bucs produce 33 rushing yards, zero (0) red zone trips in first half…Sunday’s game against up-and-down Jets key, as Tampa Bay cannot get caught playing up to their opponents level…Current five (5)-game skid still best amongst victoried NFL teams……Next Loss: New York (A)

4. Denver Broncos (3-5; lost to Philadelphia 51-23) – Broncos sinking like a stone with fourth straight loss…Denver with excellent opportunity to establish national B-10 identity with prime-time loss Sunday…Next Loss: New England

5. Cincinnati Bengals (3-5; lost to Jacksonville 23-7) – Never say die Bengals followup one-point win with inspiring blowout loss to former B-10 stalwart Jaguars…With losable game this week, Bengals cannot get caught looking ahead to upcoming showdowns with Broncos, Browns…Next Loss: at Tennessee

6. Green Bay Packers (4-4; lost to Detroit 30-17) – Packers taking advantage of injury to star quarterback to construct unexpected B-10 run with third straight loss…Defense rounding into form, too, giving up average of 27.5 points in last four (4) games…Next Loss: at Chicago

7. Houston Texans (3-5; lost to Indianapolis 20-14) – Texan fan(s) hoping clutch home, divisional loss sets tone for strong second half B-10 run…Inspired offense spends entire game punting or missing field goals until last two drives when they shake things up by scoring touchdown, fumbling…Next Loss: at Los Angeles (N)

8. Indianapolis at Houston B-10 Game of the Year nominee, as video of first half overnighted to Hall of Fame as Colts and Texans tag team for eight (8) punts, one (1) fumble and a missed field goal…Teams combine for three (3) trips to red zone…Typically, neither team able to score.

9. AFC South (16-17) – Though two (2) teams have winning records and division lacks glamour of winless team, AFC South still easy pick for weekly Pete Rozelle Award – issued to league’s worst division…Football Hall of Fame being out on notice to receive more video from remaining intra-divisional thrillers.

10. United StatesRace is on to see if once-proud nation shoots itself to death first or collapses due to other factors – like perpetual war and crushing debt – before that.

This Week’s Clash of the Titans: New York (N) at San Francisco
Even Don Criqui Is Going To This One: New York (N) at San Francisco

Share Gaylon! Go!
Posted in The Bottom Ten - 2017 | Leave a comment

The Thought for the Day – Keats

A proverb is no proverb to you until your life has illustrated it. – John Keats

John Keats was an English poet who flourished in the early 19th century. Like some poets, Keats was not particularly well received while living, his reputation growing mainly after his death at age 25 after battling tuberculosis. Keats has long been one of England’s most revered poets.

It’s nice to read and take note of wise things other people have said. It’s useful to say yes, I like that because it shows you have put some thought into what you are about.

But thoughts need action. An inspiring thought remains mere words on a page until set free and let loose in your life. So when we come across a quote we like it’s useful to ask ourselves if we implement them in our own life or do we merely nod knowingly and admire it before going on as we had before? The only real knowledge in this life comes from the experiences we give ourselves, and we will never know if the aphorism we like is really true until we give it a shot ourselves.

A good example is Henry David Thoreau’s “Proceed confidently in the direction of your dreams…” It’s the first line of a larger, rather famous quotation, and many who are familiar with it haven’t read the book Walden it is taken from. 

This is a thoughtful line, typical Thoreau, but it doesn’t do anyone any good if it is left on the page. It only provides when someone actually steps out and chases a dream or two.

Now, just because you chase a dream doesn’t mean you are going to catch it. Some dreams you do catch, life’s great prize, but others will elude you, life’s great lesson. Some dreams are chased for many years, life’s great challenge.

A proverb is no proverb to you until your life has illustrated it…

What quote, thought or proverb has meaning for you? Is your life illustrating it? If so, good. If not, why not go and live it? It doesn’t matter what the thought is, either. What one person finds meaningful someone else might find irrelevant. All that matters is that the thought means something to you, moving you to the extent that you incorporate it in your life on a daily basis because what inspires you will take you exactly where you meant to go in this life.

The Thought for the Day runs regularly. Quotes are from Gaylon’s private stock.

Share Gaylon! Go!
Posted in The Thought for the Day | Leave a comment

The Daily Dose – November 8, 2017

The Daily Dose
By Gaylon Kent
America’s Funniest Guy

Notes from around the Human Experience…

UH, YEAH, THIS IS BREAKING NEWS: Last week the United States carried out two airstrikes in Somalia in an effort to kill senior ISIS leaders. The exact extent of the damage done isn’t entirely known or, if it is, the US Africa Command isn’t saying what it is yet. They did issue a statement that read, in part:

U.S. forces will continue to use all authorized…measures to protect and to disable terrorist threats.

Call Us Traditionalists: The US Africa Command is lying of course because they are not using authorized measures at all. The only authorized measure for conducting airstrikes in any foreign country is a declaration of war by Congress, and Congress has not declared war in Somalia.

Fly In The Ointment: Congress has not, in fact, declared war anywhere since 1942. All other wars we have fought, from Korea to Vietnam to the wars we have been fighting continuously since 1989 have either been authorized by a Congressional resolution, conducted unilaterally by the president or authorized by the United Nations. Congress’ abrogation of its responsibility to declare war is one America’s great tragedies, completely out of step with both the letter and spirit of the Constitution.

Maybe The Constitution Is Good For Cleaning The Sink With: To review, the Constitution is very clear on the matter, with Article I, Section 8 stating, in part:

The Congress shall have power…To declare war.

Eight words, all very common and very clear, though three of the words have multiple syllables. There meaning is plain:

There is no other justification for the United States conducting war.

Congress has not declared war on Somalia or on any other foe the United States is currently fighting, so the US should not be fighting these wars. A Congressional resolution, a presidential order or a UN mandate is not a satisfactory alternative.

Dry, Technical Matter: Why does the US even have an Africa command in the first place? Does Somalia have a US command? Why can’t America give other nations the dignity of conducting their affairs without the benefit of US interference? 

The Bottom Line: Our world is a violent place in large measure because America is a violent nation. The very best example we can set is an example of peace. We will not have a peaceful world without a peaceful America. A large step towards having a peaceful America is not fighting wars unless they have been declared by Congress. 

ON THIS DATE! ON THIS DATE! Adolf Hitler attempts to take over Germany for the first time, the Beer Hall Putsch ending in failure on this date in 1923.

The failure was academic. The publicity generated by the event and the ensuing trial gave Hitler – then merely a malcontent veteran that headed the Nazis, then a relatively small party – national recognition and he used his prison term to produce his manifesto, Mein Kampf.

Uh-Oh: Pan-Am Flight 7, en route from San Francisco to Honolulu, disappears on this date in 1957. It wasn’t until November 14 that wreckage and passenger bodies began appearing, about 950 miles northwest of Hawaii. Some of the recovered bodies had life jackets, so they had some idea something was wrong, but the cause of the crash was never determined.

Great Moments In Getting Grandpa To Pay Your Ransom: An ear of kidnap victim John Paul Getty III, son of John Paul Getty, Jr and grandson of John Paul Getty, Sr, arrives in a Rome newspaper office on this date in 1973. Getty, then 16, had been kidnapped over the summer in Rome.

“If We Don’t Get Money In Ten Days….He Will Arrive In Little Bits.”: The initial ransom demand was for $17 million, with Getty, Sr. warmly refusing to pay the kidnappers anything. Even the arrival of body parts didn’t spur grandpa Getty into immediate action. After some negotiating, a ransom of $3 million was agreed to. Getty Sr chipped in the maximum of $2.2 million that could be deducted from his taxes and loaned his son the rest.

Oh Yeah: Nine people were eventually arrested in connection with the kidnapping. Two were convicted and the others were acquitted. Getty III died in 2011.

Get Out Your History Books: Elgin Baylor of the Los Angeles Lakers sets the NBA single-game scoring mark with 64 points in a 136-115 victory over the Boston Celtics on this date in 1959. Baylor broke the record of 63 set by Joe Fulks of the Philadelphia Warriors in 1949 and Baylor would break his record a year later when he scored 71 points in a game against New York.

FunFact: The record is now 100 points, by Wilt Chamberlain.

Quotebook:  …you cannot blame a mirror for what it shows. – Gore Vidal, Empire

Answer To The Last Trivia Question: Montana went from having two members in the US House of Representatives to having one member in 1993.

Today’s Stumper: Where is the US Africa Command headquartered?  – Answer next time!

Share Gaylon! Go!
Posted in The Daily Dose | Leave a comment

Some Thoughts On Our Violent Country

Friends, if a preview of the video does not appear below, please click on the title to watch.

Share Gaylon! Go!
Posted in GaylonTV | Leave a comment

The Bottom Ten/NCAA Week 11

The Bottom Ten/NCAA Week 11
By Gaylon Kent
America’s Funniest Guy

And then there were two.

It’s not easy to go winless in the Bottom Ten – at least not as easy at UTEP and Georgia Southern are making it look – as Baylor showed winning its first game with a strength-of-schedule points padding win over Kansas.

There is still a lot of footballs left to be fumbled, however, and veteran Bottom Ten fan(s) know you ignore the one-win teams in the race for the ESPN Cup – symbolic of NCAA Bottom Ten supremacy – at your peril.

This week’s mess:  

1. UTEP (0-9; lost to Middle Tennessee 30-3)
Mitigating Factors: UTEP not even bothering to show token, early interest anymore, punting on every first half possession as offense in rare form, even for UTEP, producing six (6) first downs and eight (8) drives of three plays, four (4) of those for negative yardage…Current nine (9) game skid easily best in-season losing streak since 2003 squad’s season ending seven (7)-game skid.
Numbers Racket: Miners (still) rank Dead Last in Total Offense (213 ypg) and First Downs (103) while defense helps hold down the fort, ranking 120th in Rushing Defense (226.1 ypg)
Next Loss: at North Texas

2. Georgia Southern (0-8; lost to Georgia State 21-17)
Mitigating Factors: Eagles show type of mettle that leads straight to B-10 glory, blowing fourth-quarter lead with two fumbles, one of which leads to go-ahead touchdown…While Eagles not the statistical juggernaut found in most B-10 medal stand teams, they do rank 120th or worse in five (5) official NCAA stat categories…Georgia Southern, a former I -AA power, is looking for first-ever winless season.
FunFact: Lead story on athletic department website is exclusive on tennis team not shaving this month despite fact nobody on team appears able to grow a beard.
Next Loss: at Appalachian State (Thu 11/9)

3. Rice (1-8; lost to UAB 52-21)
Mitigating Factors: Owls, no stranger to the upper echelons of the B-10, patiently bide time in return to B-10 medal stand following Baylor victory…Owls never in this one, trailing 21-0 before anybody needed a deodorant…Offense makes quick amends for second quarter touchdown, allowing interception returned for touchdown on very next drive. FunFact: Owls know if you’re on the medal stand in November you’re in title contention, but only win coming to UTEP, Rice realistically needs a lot of help to win first B-10 title.
Next Loss: Southern Mississippi

4. San Jose State (1-9; lost to San Diego State 52-7)
Mitigating Factors: Spartans keep pressure on rest of B-10 with huge blowout loss…Offense shows way this week, producing eight (8) first downs, 33 (33) rushing yards and three (3) turnovers…The 2010 B-10 champions, Spartans looking to become first team in 20-Teens to win multiple B-10 crowns…Spartans in midst of one of their best runs ever, having lost nine (9) straight and 14 of 16.
FunFact: Only win came in opener against lower level school, meaning Spartans can earn Tostitos Plaque – issued to team with longest losing streak in season that actually includes a win – by losing out.
Next Loss: at Nevada

5. Kansas (1-8; lost to Baylor 38-9)
Mitigating Factors: Jayhawks show laser focus in quest for B-10 medal stand, breaking Baylor’s eight (8)-game losing skid with resounding home loss…Jayhawks have not won consecutive games against major division opponents since 2009…Team so bad Memorial Stadium expansion fundraising focus has shifted from premium seating and video boards to new taquito stand for east concourse.
Dust In The Big 12: Jayhawks making big pitch for B-10 Team of the Decade honors with overall 15-68 record plus 2015 B-10 title and 2012 Tostitos Plaque – issued to team with longest losing streak in a season that actually includes a win.
Next Loss: at Texas

6. Earlham (0-9; lost to Bluffton 65-21)
Mitigating Factors: Division III Quakers move ever closer to elusive second consecutive Continental Cup – issued to team with longest all-division losing streak in NATO – with 42nd consecutive loss…While offense continues to put more points than B-10 pollsters feel comfortable with (19.1 ppg), defense more than up to challenge, giving up average of 50.8 points every week.
FunFact: School so confident in next year’s prospects it has formed steering committee to plan celebration when school ties Macalester’s all-time Division III losing streak mark at 50 games next season.
Next Loss: Rose Hulman

7. Air Force (4-5; lost to Army 21-0)
Mitigating Factors: With losses to Navy and Army in 2017, Air Force earns Sgt Bilko Trophy – symbolic of service academy lousiness…B-10 pollsters still scouring Uniform Code of Military Justice, but are “pretty sure” this is Falcons first Sgt Bilko Trophy since 2005…Falcons hampered by pregame Air Force secretary ruling requiring all ball carriers to flap arms like wings when running football and to conduct all audibles in chirping and cawing sounds.
FunFact: Though B-10 pollsters suitably patriotic, they still long for days when all three service academies were bad enough to combine for hilarious joint entry in order prevent complete military occupation of B-10 medal stand.
Next Loss: Wyoming

8. Penn State (7-2; lost to Michigan State 27-24)
Mitigating Factors: Current two (2)-game losing streak more than enough to take Nittany Lions of College Football Playoff conversation…B-10 pollsters still believe Penn State got off lightly in Jerry Sandusky scandal and really have no business making money from major division football.
FunFact: Football team moving forward nicely from NCAA sanctions…It’s as if they never harbored a child molester on their coaching staff at all.
Next Loss: Who cares

9. Baylor (1-8; defeated Kansas 38-9)
Mitigating Factors: Bears B-10 title hopes take direct hit with stunning blowout road win…Offense completely inept, producing 455 yards of offense and zero (0) turnovers…Baylor fan(s) poleaxed, wondering how team that has lost to lower level school, newcomer Texas-San Antonio and Duke in 2017 could up and win against loser Kansas team.
When All The Laughter Died In Winning: Just like that Bears go from B-10 medal stand darlings to another one (1)-team that can’t stop the run.  
Next Loss: Texas Tech

10. Big Ten/Pac-12
Mitigating Factors: First shared B-10 Conference of the Week Award, as once-proud conferences probably need a plane crash or two to get champion into playoffs as College Football Playoff prepares to rename itself the SEC/ACC Challenge Presented by Nick Saban.
FunFact: With Rose Bowl serving as one CFP semifinal, Big Ten, Pac-12  champions cannot even look forward to consolation prize trip to Pasadena following season.

This Week’s Clash of the Titans: San Jose State at Nevada
This One’s Going To Suck, Too: Southern Mississippi at Rice
The Eyes of Texas Are Upon You: UTEP at North Texas

Share Gaylon! Go!
Posted in The Bottom Ten - 2017 | Leave a comment

The Daily Dose – November 7, 2017

Notes from around the Human Experience…

ANCHORS AWEIGH: Last week the Navy released its reports on collisions involving the USS Fitzgerald and the USS John McCain. Both suffered catastrophic collisions this past summer, the Fitzgerald off the southern coast of Japan and the McCain near Singapore. A total of 17 sailors were killed.

We have experience navigating and standing lookout on US naval vessels and at the time we said we would not die of shock if the investigations showed the crew of both ships were not doing their job properly. There wasn’t really any other possibility, really. A Navy vessel manned by properly trained sailors standing their watches properly is very difficult to collide with.

Fly In The Ointment: Neither the Fitzgerald or the McCain were manned by properly trained sailors standing a proper watch.

The Fitzgerald was heading south and the ship it hit, the Crystal was heading northeast and were on a collision course for about 15 minutes. Nobody did anything. Fitzgerald watchstanders must have been having a spades tournament because the ship could not be bothered to maneuver, sound an alarm or contact the Crystal. Lookouts and radar and sonar operators failed to provide any information, either, and you do not have to be John Paul Jones to surmise these watchstanders may well have been sleeping, although we read the report and this was not mentioned, although crew fatigue was cited as a cause. The captain was not contacted and had some zero clue his ship was in danger until the bow of the Crystal appeared in his stateroom.

FunFact: One of the Navy’s favorite phrases, lessons learned, was first used in the second paragraph of the report. ‘Systemic causes’ appears in the third paragraph.


“…Complacency, Over-Confidence And Lack Of Procedural Compliance”: Meanwhile, on the McCain, the captain was on the bridge but there were steering problems and the report cites a lack of situational awareness – code for nobody knew what in the hell was going on – as the cause of the collision.

Standard Navy Phraseology 101: 242 years into it and the Navy can still muck up a wet dream, as sailors like to say. 17 shipmates are dead because of it. Yes, the appropriate people got fired and some might be subject to court-martial, but it’s too late to the 17 dead shipmates any good. One of the great lessons of seamanship – take care of the small things and the big things will take care of themselves – still has not been learned.

ON THIS DATE! ON THIS DATE! Jeannette Rankin becomes the first woman elected to Congress on this date in 1916, winning election from one of two at-large districts in Montana. During her term, the Montana legislature voted to replace the two at-large districts with two geographical districts and Rankin, a Republican, declined to run in her new, heavily Democratic district.

FunFact: Rankin was also elected to Congress in 1940, again serving one term.

“I  Can’t Go To War…And I  Refuse To Send Anyone Else”: Rankin served during momentous times. She would be one of 50 in the House of Representatives to vote against US entry into World War I and she was the only member of either the Senate or House to vote against declaring war on Japan after the bombing of Pearl Harbor.  

Dry, Technical Matter: A lifelong advocate of, among other things, peace and women’s rights, Rankin never bothered to get married.

Well, This Isn’t According To Specs: The Tacoma Narrows Bridge – then the third-longest suspension bridge in the world – collapses into Puget Sound on this date in 1940 during a windstorm. The only fatality was a dog who had been left in a car on the bridge. Rescuers were not treated well by the dog, who insisted on biting them and the dog fell into Puget Sound along with the car he was in. His body was never recovered.

Great Moments In Magic Johnson: Magic Johnson of the Los Angeles Lakers announces he has HIV and retires from the NBA on this date in 1991. Johnson attempted a comeback before the following season, which he abandoned during the exhibition season, but would return to play 32 regular season games and four playoff games in the 1995-96 season.

Quotebook: Truth is generally the best vindication against slander. – Abraham Lincoln

Answer To The Last Trivia Question: The first college football game that involved running the ball, eleven men on a side and a play ending with the tackling of the ball carrier was played on June 4, 1875, when Tufts defeated Harvard 1-0.

Today’s Stumper: When did Montana go from having two members of the US House of Representatives to having one member?  – Answer next time!

Share Gaylon! Go!
Posted in The Daily Dose | Leave a comment