Parliament Of Owls

An eclectic discussion of Life, Science, Politics, Religion, and the occasional Bad Pun.

Wednesday, December 22, 2004

Common Courtesy, "Holiday Spirit" Style

My daughter had her first dance recital last night, a minor spot in an almost three-hour show based on the classic Miracle on 34th Street.

Never having been to a dance recital before, I really wasn't sure what I was getting myself into.

I must say that I was pleasantly surprised. It was a most entertaining mix of ballet, dance, jazz and tap styles. Plus, my daughter's appearance was special :)

I had to videotape the event; during the performance, I began to get increasingly annoyed with the number of people moving in front of the camera. As the performance continued, the annoyance factor increased, as people continued to move about the entire time.

Then it occurred to me, that a bigger issue wasn't just the people moving in front of the camera; the bigger problem was that all of these people were doing a great discourtesy to all of the young ladies up on the stage.

The girls have spent months preparing for this performance; we owed it to them to sit down, shut up, and enjoy their performance. If you couldn't be bothered to show them a little common courtesy, then perhaps you should have taken your busy schedule and need to talk elsewhere.


And They Say Politics Makes Strange Bedfellows

Steelers fans found themselves in the odd position of cheering (perhaps halfheartedly) for the Browns and Ravens this past weekend.

Browns??? Ravens???

Consider: the Browns played the Chargers, and the Ravens played the Colts. After the Steelers' win Saturday (note to Giants: get some support for Eli, and he'll be all that you were expecting), they would have clinched a first-round bye if the Chargers and Colts both lost.

Of course, both the Browns and Ravens lost, so fans can get back to a sense of "normalcy" again.


Wednesday, December 15, 2004

The "Truth," Politics Style

I read an amusing article in today's Morning Journal, our local daily newspaper, regarding people who still don't believe that Bush won the Ohio election.

Here are the relelvant parts of the article (from AP's John Nolan) from the first and last paragraphs:

A complaint ... asks the Ohio Supreme Court to set aside the results of the Nov. 2 election and declare John Kerry the winner of the state's 20 electoral votes...

... "It's [who the plaintiffs supported in the election] not relevant," [plaintiffs' attorney Cliff] Arnebeck said. "Our purpose is not partisan. Our purpose is to get at the truth." [Owl's emphasis in both paragraphs]
"Truth"? Riiiiiiiiight.

If you want to show me proof that sufficient votes were uncounted or miscounted to change the outcome (i.e., around 120,000 votes), I'm willing to listen. If all you have are exit polls (as Mrs. Owl says, "who's stopping me from lying about who I voted for?"), waiting in line (which we're all doing right now during Christmas shopping season) and the use of punch-card machines (which I too used... and double-checked my ballot, all clean punches for the desired choices), then you're wasting my time.

Are you really interested in the truth, Mr. Arnebeck? I'll believe it when you also go after the "truth" in Memogate and the Washington governor's race.


Tuesday, December 14, 2004

Gotta Love the 438 Counter Option

Many years ago, I would play Madden '97 on my PC. My favorite play was the halfback option pass; when it worked (which was often), it always went for big yardage. My leading passer was Jerome Bettis (maybe the game was prescient, but Kordell Stewart's numbers just weren't all that good), who'd always end up with numbers that would make Peyton Manning's stats look trivial.

So, I had to laugh when the Steelers called for the 438 Counter. Of course, I've seen many better-looking passes from halfbacks (and a few worse-looking ones from quarterbacks - usually when being mauled by defensive linemen), but hey, style points don't count, especially when you get 6 points on the board out of the play.

Way to go, Steelers!