Monday, October 23, 2006

%&*$ING Blogger

1 hour 3 topics 13 paragraphs links video push publish *ZOTZ* Gone!!!!! It's depressing. Well not as bad as Clarkie on Sunday, but pretty bad. I'll see if I can get my thoughts back togther later and post.

%&*$ING Blogger

1 hour

3 topics


13 paragraphs


links


video


push publish *ZOTZ*


Gone!!!!!


It's depressing. Well not as bad as Clarkie on Sunday, but pretty bad.


I'll see if I can get my thoughts back togther later and post.

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Saturday, October 21, 2006

So this is What October Baseball Looks Like

Watching the World Series previews, I have to restrain myself from throwing things at the television. When I look at how simply average the St. Louis Cardinals are, I am forced to realize that had it not been for a game here or there, this was the Phils' year to get to the Fall Classic. Let's face it, the Phillies didn't do what they needed to do to make it into the playoffs. But they were certainly hotter down the stretch than EITHER of the teams playing this w eekend. Two things doomed this Phillies team in 2006. April and Charlie Manuel. Conversely, April and the managers are why the Tigers and Cards are still playing and everyone else is playing golf. Except Cory Lidle of course. The Cardinals are starting a guy in Game One who wouldn't even start for the Phillies and who had an ERA over 5! Their thirdbaseman hasn't driven a guy in since my birthday. The Tigers staggered into the playoffs and have not played in a week. It's the old rest or rust question. Detroit was red-hot a week ago, but will the week off give the Cards an edge? I would say yes if the opening games were in St. Louis. However, since the schedule starts in Detroit's Comerica Park, I think that Detroit will be able to shake off the rust and prevail. It won't be as easy as everyone thinks though, as the Cards will take 2 at home and force the Tigers to come back to Detroit to pick up the trophy. Random thoughts: Valanni has the best food in the city right now. But Mercato isn't as good as the reviews. Seems like the Birds will be more healthy this weekend, and they'll need it. 20-17 Birds. I thought we had a major league hockey team in this town. This is a trainwreck. Can Clarke survive? YouTube is history. Have a good weekend!

So this is What October Baseball Looks Like

Watching the World Series previews, I have to restrain myself from throwing things at the television. When I look at how simply average the St. Louis Cardinals are, I am forced to realize that had it not been for a game here or there, this was the Phils' year to get to the Fall Classic.

Let's face it, the Phillies didn't do what they needed to do to make it into the playoffs. But they were certainly hotter down the stretch than EITHER of the teams playing this w eekend. Two things doomed this Phillies team in 2006. April and Charlie Manuel. Conversely, April and the managers are why the Tigers and Cards are still playing and everyone else is playing golf. Except Cory Lidle of course.


The Cardinals are starting a guy in Game One who wouldn't even start for the Phillies and who had an ERA over 5! Their thirdbaseman hasn't driven a guy in since my birthday.


The Tigers staggered into the playoffs and have not played in a week. It's the old rest or rust question. Detroit was red-hot a week ago, but will the week off give the Cards an edge?


I would say yes if the opening games were in St. Louis. However, since the schedule starts
in Detroit's Comerica Park, I think that Detroit will be able to shake off the rust and prevail. It won't be as easy as everyone thinks though, as the Cards will take 2 at home and force the Tigers to come back to Detroit to pick up the trophy.


Random thoughts:


Valanni has the best food in the city right now. But Mercato isn't as good as the reviews.


Seems like the Birds will be more healthy this weekend, and they'll need it. 20-17 Birds.


I thought we had a major league hockey team in this town. This is a trainwreck. Can Clarke survive?


YouTube is history.


Have a good weekend!

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Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Classy vs. Classless

Classy You may have missed this one in the mess that was sports this weekend. Golf legend Arnold Palmer retired. The 77 year old Palmer withdrew from the Administaff Small Business Classic somewhere in Texas after playing only four holes. His back was killing him and he had hit a bunch of shots into the water. What was classy about it? Palmer kept playing, just didn't keep score. He realized that hundreds of people had come out to watch him, and he didn't want to disappoint them. The guy gets it. I met him about 7 years ago at the Bell Atlantic Classic. He was funny, personable and engaging. And at the time, at 70, he could still corkscrew himself into that weird swing and lash a golf ball down the fairway. People have been watching the guy hit a little white ball for over 50 years. Part of me can't believe it won't happen again. Classless I hate to do this, but the comparison is just to stark not to make. On the same weekend you had something as great as what I listed above you also had the most classless display I have ever seen in college football. As the Thugs of the University of Miami clashed with the Junior Thugs of Florida International University. In case you have been under a rock for 4 days, here is the video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1JWeE9KqZjQ The worst part is at the end, where after beating FIU players with helmets and crutches, the Felons in Orange gather and do a victory dance. Disgusting. Larry Coker should walk his sorry butt over to Donna Shalala's office today and resign. But he won't, because this kind of behavior doesn't happen unless the coach condones it. He obviously does, so she should buy him out and end the season for these sorry excuses for scholarship athletes. Among the other casualties of this brawl is Comcast's analyst and UM alum Lamar Thomas, who can be heard exulting on the clip above. Comcast did the right thing Monday and fired his ass. Have a great day, C

Classy vs. Classless

Classy

You may have missed this one in the mess that was sports this weekend. Golf legend Arnold Palmer retired.


The 77 year old Palmer withdrew from the Administaff Small Business Classic somewhere in Texas after playing only four holes. His back was killing him and he had hit a bunch of shots into the water. What was classy about it? Palmer kept playing, just didn't keep score. He realized that hundreds of people had come out to watch him, and he didn't want to disappoint them.


The guy gets it. I met him about 7 years ago at the Bell Atlantic Classic. He was funny, personable and engaging. And at the time, at 70, he could still corkscrew himself into that weird swing and lash a golf ball down the fairway. People have been watching the guy hit a little white ball for over 50 years. Part of me can't believe it won't happen again.


Classless


I hate to do this, but the comparison is just to stark not to make.


On the same weekend you had something as great as what I listed above you also had the most classless display I have ever seen in college football. As the Thugs of the University of Miami clashed with the Junior Thugs of Florida International University.


In case you have been under a rock for 4 days, here is the video:


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1JWeE9KqZjQ


The worst part is at the end, where after beating FIU players with helmets and crutches, the Felons in Orange gather and do a victory dance. Disgusting.


Larry Coker should walk his sorry butt over to Donna Shalala's office today and resign. But he won't, because this kind of behavior doesn't happen unless the coach condones it. He obviously does, so she should buy him out and end the season for these sorry excuses for scholarship athletes.


Among the other casualties of this brawl is Comcast's analyst and UM alum Lamar Thomas, who can be heard exulting on the clip above. Comcast did the right thing Monday and fired his ass.


Have a great day,


C


Monday, October 16, 2006

Baby Brother

My brother Matt turns 27 today. Today, I count him as one of my best friends and most trusted advisers. It took 27 years for this to happen. I remember - The day he was born. My sister Carin and I stayed overnight at our grandfather's. My brother owns that house now. When the bus came, we bragged to everyone about him. I still brag to people all the time about him. He's a superstar in my book. That he used to have a flat spot on the back of his head from slamming it into the high chair when he was angry. Why my parents had a wooden high chair with no padding I have no idea. That his hair was almost blonde and he had freckles as a child and we called him "Mr. Matt." He is still sorta charming. Even if women think we are the same age! Calming him as a child when he got night terrors. Not sure what he was upset about, but my kids get them too now and then, and I'm glad I learned early that all it takes is a few soothing words and a rub on the back. Bringing him to Cabrini when he was about 9 or 10. He stayed over for Family Night or something like that. It's not true at all that he developed his taste for beer that weekend. Taking him to his first Temple Football game at the Vet. He was also about 10. Mostly he wanted to see MC Hammer. No, Temple didn't win that day. No, they have not won since. Realizing when he was in high school that he is a better writer than I am. Took a while to admit that one, but it's pretty clear today. Moving him into Temple. You couldn't get a room on the SECOND floor? Being incredibly jealous when he took a semester in Rome. It was SO much easier for him being the third kid. I can just imagine what Mom and Dad would have said if I had suggested that i was going to study abroad. Enjoying the afternoon at the Duke-Temple game this past year. And all the beers and ball games along he way. Seeing how much my children love him, I know one day he will be a good father. I think. Matt, have a great day! You are a great guy and I wish you nothing but happiness as you creep toward 30. I hope you learn from my example, rather from my mistakes!

Baby Brother

My brother Matt turns 27 today. Today, I count him as one of my best friends and most trusted advisers. It took 27 years for this to happen.

I remember -


The day he was born. My sister Carin and I stayed overnight at our grandfather's. My brother owns that house now. When the bus came, we bragged to everyone about him. I still brag to people all the time about him. He's a superstar in my book.


That he used to have a flat spot on the back of his head from slamming it into the high chair when he was angry. Why my parents had a wooden high chair with no padding I have no idea.


That his hair was almost blonde and he had freckles as a child and we called him "Mr. Matt." He is still sorta charming. Even if women think we are the same age!


Calming him as a child when he got night terrors. Not sure what he was upset about, but my kids get them too now and then, and I'm glad I learned early that all it takes is a few soothing words and a rub on the back.


Bringing him to Cabrini when he was about 9 or 10. He stayed over for Family Night or something like that. It's not true at all that he developed his taste for beer that weekend.


Taking him to his first Temple Football game at the Vet. He was also about 10. Mostly he wanted to see MC Hammer. No, Temple didn't win that day. No, they have not won since.


Realizing when he was in high school that he is a better writer than I am. Took a while to admit that one, but it's pretty clear today.


Moving him into Temple. You couldn't get a room on the SECOND floor?


Being incredibly jealous when he took a semester in Rome. It was SO much easier for him being the third kid. I can just imagine what Mom and Dad would have said if I had suggested that i was going to study abroad.


Enjoying the afternoon at the Duke-Temple game this past year. And all the beers and ball games along he way.


Seeing how much my children love him, I know one day he will be a good father. I think.


Matt, have a great day! You are a great guy and I wish you nothing but happiness as you creep toward 30. I hope you learn from my example, rather from my mistakes!

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Friday, October 13, 2006

Cory Lidle Flies Into Building - Immediately Canonized

On Wednesday, I briefly had a blog up on the rather odd end of Cory Lidle's planetary existence, but brought it down because I thought it might have read a bit harsh. I've toned down my comments a bit after reading and reflection. My brother's blog post covers most of how I feel and he and I have talked about it a good bit. I owe him for the opportunity to vent! I'll tell you that when I heard it was Lidle, I had 3 basic instincts: A. I hope no one else go hurt. B. So he's no good at flying a plane either. C. Well that makes the trade look a LITTLE better. Harsh, I know, but the guy has become something in death that the never was in life. Here's what he was in life: A. A #5 starting pitcher on most staffs B. A guy who played for 8 teams in 9 years. C. A guy who routinely blasted teammates then relied on buddies in the media to patch it up. D. A scab. Yeah I feel very bad for his 6 year old son and his wife and family. Losing a dad and a husband is a terrible thing, especially so unexpectedly. What bothers me about all this though is that because of his minor celebrity status, the guy has been given a pass on all of his misdeeds and faults. Have a great weekend, C

Cory Lidle Flies Into Building - Immediately Canonized

On Wednesday, I briefly had a blog up on the rather odd end of Cory Lidle's planetary existence, but brought it down because I thought it might have read a bit harsh. I've toned down my comments a bit after reading and reflection.

My brother's blog post covers most of how I feel and he and I have talked about it a good bit. I owe him for the opportunity to vent!


I'll tell you that when I heard it was Lidle, I had 3 basic instincts:


A. I hope no one else go hurt.
B. So he's no good at flying a plane either.
C. Well that makes the trade look a LITTLE better.


Harsh, I know, but the guy has become something in death that the never was in life.


Here's what he was in life:


A. A #5 starting pitcher on most staffs
B. A guy who played for 8 teams in 9 years.
C. A guy who routinely blasted teammates then relied on buddies in the media to patch it up.
D. A scab.


Yeah I feel very bad for his 6 year old son and his wife and family. Losing a dad and a husband is a terrible thing, especially so unexpectedly.


What bothers me about all this though is that because of his minor celebrity status, the guy has been given a pass on all of his misdeeds and faults.


Have a great weekend,


C

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Tuesday, October 10, 2006

A Great Columnist Passes

Frank Dolson died on Sunday. Many of the younger readers of this space won't recognize the name of one of the finest sports writers of a generation. I'll do what I can to give you an idea of what this guy meant to Philadelphia sports. An amazing writer, he retired in 1995 after a 41 year career in Philadelphia newspapers as a writer, columnist and sports editor. I still remember some of his best work, including his coverage of the Big Five and the Phillies pennants. When I was a younger man, Dolson was one of a few men who made me want to write about sports. His straightforward work was a celebration of the men who play the games and the people they play them for. He told their stories with a passion that jumped off the page and an authenticity that is near-absent from local newspapers today. To some extent I must confess that I miss the days before ESPN and pervasive local and satellite coverage. When the only way you could experience the thrill of the streamers unfurling at the Palestra was to be there or to read about it through the talents of a master like Dolson. His direct style let you add the embellishment, but left no room for confusion. Dolson's obituary notes that he was a life-long Yankees fan and got to spend a good portion of the last part of his life working for Steinbrenner. I'm happy for him that he had this opportunity, but sorry that the Boys in the Bronx were unable to get it done for him this fall. In his last gift to Philadelphia sports, Dolson, a 1954 Penn Wharton School graduate, established an endowment of $1.25 million to support fund the Penn Relays in perpetuity. It's a wonderful gift by a man whose mark will never fade from my memory. Thanks for the memories.

A Great Columnist Passes

Frank Dolson died on Sunday. Many of the younger readers of this space won't recognize the name of one of the finest sports writers of a generation. I'll do what I can to give you an idea of what this guy meant to Philadelphia sports. An amazing writer, he retired in 1995 after a 41 year career in Philadelphia newspapers as a writer, columnist and sports editor. I still remember some of his best work, including his coverage of the Big Five and the Phillies pennants.

When I was a younger man, Dolson was one of a few men who made me want to write about sports. His straightforward work was a celebration of the men who play the games and the people they play them for. He told their stories with a passion that jumped off the page and an authenticity that is near-absent from local newspapers today. To some extent I must confess that I miss the days before ESPN and pervasive local and satellite coverage. When the only way you could experience the thrill of the streamers unfurling at the Palestra was to be there or to read about it through the talents of a master like Dolson. His direct style let you add the embellishment, but left no room for confusion.


Dolson's obituary notes that he was a life-long Yankees fan and got to spend a good portion of the last part of his life working for Steinbrenner. I'm happy for him that he had this opportunity, but sorry that the Boys in the Bronx were unable to get it done for him this fall.


In his last gift to Philadelphia sports, Dolson, a 1954 Penn Wharton School graduate, established an endowment of $1.25 million to support fund the Penn Relays in perpetuity. It's a wonderful gift by a man whose mark will never fade from my memory.


Thanks for the memories.

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Saturday, October 07, 2006

What the Hell Happened?

Ok, let's be clear here. I am NOT the hippest guy around. I don't go to a lot of concerts or hang out in cool clubs. But I do get to the Wachovia Center more than a few times. Concerts, hoops, hockey, all said I have probably been there a half dozen times in the last year. So last night when my friend who I can't tell you about went down to the Big House for a Phantoms Game, I was ASTONISHED at the changes the Center's 10th year brings. No Red Bell. (By the looks of their site, no one told the, yet!) Terrible beer selection. Near zero food choices. Now I am not going to pretend that the Red Bell Brew Pub that used to be on the concourse was anything special. The beer was uneven in quality and place was always too crowded. But it was the freshest beer in a sports venue I have had. And it was certainly far better in quality than the terrible little Finnegan's Wake (no one told their webmaster either) they dropped into the prime concourse spot. The place looks terrible with about 50 green-shaded lamps hanging from the ceiling. The only beer available is distributed by mega-beer conglomerate Anheuser-Busch. (These guys should stick to making aluminum cans, rather than filling it with anything.) Prices? ABout normal. You always pay $750 for 16 ounces of frothy, warm Bud Light, right? When it opened, the Canter was one of the best venues to watch an event in America. Wide concourses, lotsa bathrooms , good beer and great sight lines made it a monster step up from the Spectrum. The Spectrum had all those banners, but you risked life and limb looking up at them because the steps were so damn steep. And who could forget the the lines in the tiny hallways they called concourses? And the scary, subterranean bathrooms? So the Center with three different corporate appellations was a welcome step up. And they regularly made it better, most notably with the bar/restaurant/stage pavilion they added this past spring.. There are some great memorabilia displays, most interesting of which is the Flyers Hat Trick display of the thousands of hats that have been picked up off the ice. The last two times I have visited though, I was left with the feeling that the place is slipping down hill. Food quality and selection are not as good, staff seem a bit less friendly. The bathrooms need to be spruced up. The changes didn't dampen the fun we had at the Phantom's 5-4 OT win over the Norfolk Admirals, but I was still left thinking, remember when this place was new? Maybe I am getting grumpy in my old age!

What the Hell Happened?

Ok, let's be clear here. I am NOT the hippest guy around. I don't go to a lot of concerts or hang out in cool clubs. But I do get to the Wachovia Center more than a few times. Concerts, hoops, hockey, all said I have probably been there a half dozen times in the last year.

So last night when my friend who I can't tell you about went down to the Big House for a Phantoms Game, I was ASTONISHED at the changes the Center's 10th year brings. No Red Bell. (By the looks of their site, no one told the, yet!) Terrible beer selection. Near zero food choices.


Now I am not going to pretend that the Red Bell Brew Pub that used to be on the concourse was anything special. The beer was uneven in quality and place was always too crowded. But it was the freshest beer in a sports venue I have had. And it was certainly far better in quality than the terrible little Finnegan's Wake (no one told their webmaster either) they dropped into the prime concourse spot.


The place looks terrible with about 50 green-shaded lamps hanging from the ceiling. The only beer available is distributed by mega-beer conglomerate Anheuser-Busch. (These guys should stick to making aluminum cans, rather than filling it with anything.) Prices? ABout normal. You always pay $750 for 16 ounces of frothy, warm Bud Light, right?


When it opened, the Canter was one of the best venues to watch an event in America. Wide concourses, lotsa bathrooms , good beer and great sight lines made it a monster step up from the Spectrum. The Spectrum had all those banners, but you risked life and limb looking up at them because the steps were so damn steep. And who could forget the the lines in the tiny hallways they called concourses? And the scary, subterranean bathrooms?


So the Center with three different corporate appellations was a welcome step up. And they regularly made it better, most notably with the bar/restaurant/stage pavilion they added this past spring.. There are some great memorabilia displays, most interesting of which is the Flyers Hat Trick display of the thousands of hats that have been picked up off the ice.


The last two times I have visited though, I was left with the feeling that the place is slipping down hill. Food quality and selection are not as good, staff seem a bit less friendly. The bathrooms need to be spruced up.


The changes didn't dampen the fun we had at the Phantom's 5-4 OT win over the Norfolk Admirals, but I was still left thinking, remember when this place was new?


Maybe I am getting grumpy in my old age!

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Friday, October 06, 2006

Bill Conlin Is A No-Talent Hack

He is also a fat tub of shit, but I am trying to be restrained here. Right now I am trying to prevent myself from walking up Broad Street and beating him into early retirement with his own frigging typewriter. Did anyone catch his column today? First he goes through the nonsense about Abraham Nunez being a good enough player to put at third base every day. The numbers he cites are based on a platoon year in St. Louis. Yeah the guy plays the field better than Aramis Ramirez, but how many games a year is that winning you? He attacks the corners in defense by talking about the Brooklyn Dodgers of the 50s. Hey Bill, the teams had 6 pitchers back then and guys smoked in the on-deck circle. The game has changed a bit in the intervening years. He babbles on about some stat that a buddy of his dug up that the Phils' bullpen wasn't that good this year. Well no shit sherlock. When you take out Geary, Cormier, Smith and White (as he does) the rest of the guys are not real strong. Fortunately those guys did pitch here this year and we can go get them again. Finally he closes by showing the petulant little crybaby he is. I'll quote to save you from having to click through. "Finally, when retiring Jeff Cooper was hired to be trainer Don Seger's assistant in 1976, I had been a Phillies beat writer 10 years. Cooper never said hello then, so I won't say goodbye." WAAA WAAA WAAA. Let me translate this for you: "Back when I had only been stealing money for a decade, the cool new kid in the class didn't say hi to me in the lunch line. I am a big weenie and I am still holding a grudge 30 years later, so I will use my nifty column to blast a guy as he retires." What a coward. Maybe the fact that Jeff Cooper is hanging it up ought to give you some ideas. Maybe if you had saved a few dollars instead of spending it on, oh god knows what, you too could retire too Bill. Why didn't you take the buyout this summer, Bill? Afraid that you won't be able to chow down on the free buffet in the press room? Perhaps you realize that the day you write your last line that you will be forgotten in this town. Some of won't forget how bad you have been. C

Bill Conlin Is A No-Talent Hack

He is also a fat tub of shit, but I am trying to be restrained here. Right now I am trying to prevent myself from walking up Broad Street and beating him into early retirement with his own frigging typewriter.

Did anyone catch his column today?


First he goes through the nonsense about Abraham Nunez being a good enough player to put at third base every day. The numbers he cites are based on a platoon year in St. Louis. Yeah the guy plays the field better than Aramis Ramirez, but how many games a year is that winning you?


He attacks the corners in defense by talking about the Brooklyn Dodgers of the 50s. Hey Bill, the teams had 6 pitchers back then and guys smoked in the on-deck circle. The game has changed a bit in the intervening years.


He babbles on about some stat that a buddy of his dug up that the Phils' bullpen wasn't that good this year. Well no shit sherlock. When you take out Geary, Cormier, Smith and White (as he does) the rest of the guys are not real strong. Fortunately those guys did pitch here this year and we can go get them again.


Finally he closes by showing the petulant little crybaby he is. I'll quote to save you from having to click through.


"Finally, when retiring Jeff Cooper was hired to be trainer Don Seger's assistant in 1976,
I had been a Phillies beat writer 10 years. Cooper never said hello then, so I won't say goodbye."


WAAA WAAA WAAA. Let me translate this for you: "Back when I had only been stealing money for a decade, the cool new kid in the class didn't say hi to me in the lunch line. I am a big weenie and I am still holding a grudge 30 years later, so I will use my nifty column to blast a guy as he retires."


What a coward.


Maybe the fact that Jeff Cooper is hanging it up ought to give you some ideas. Maybe if you had saved a few dollars instead of spending it on, oh god knows what, you too could retire too Bill. Why didn't you take the buyout this summer, Bill? Afraid that you won't be able to chow down on the free buffet in the press room? Perhaps you realize that the day you write your last line that you will be forgotten in this town.


Some of won't forget how bad you have been.


C

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Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Little Brother Buys A House

My little brother Matt bought a house last Friday. Today in the first of many such purchases, he bought a shop vac. It's the house my dad grew up in and Matt is the third member of the third generation of the Pesotski family to live there. I lived ther for about a year after my grandfather (pictured above) died. My sister lived there for a few years and now Matt has lived there longer that he thought he would.

It's a pretty typical post-WW2 GI tract house. A 4 bedroom Cape Cod with a small yard. The yard may be small, but it grew some of the largest tomato plants (also above) ever seen. Like any house inhabited for 40 years by an older person and then by a series of young people, there is some deferred maintenence. What I would do with this house is improve both its liveability and curb appeal. It's a good house for a young family, ut would not be real appealing in its current condiditon. Matt has some work ahead of him. Here's what I would do: Do Today

  • Get the heating duct fixed
  • Clean the basement up
Its going to get cold soon, son! It's actually hilarious the run of events that resulted in the heater having an open duct to the basement, but this is a short space. Top Priorities The roof was done by a low-bid government contractor in 1983. It's toast. There is maybe one winter left in it, then things will get ugly. Do the right thing and do all four of these things together and soon. Get a nice color siding that matches the new roof. Of course you need to remove the sheds to do the siding. Also Important
  • Replace the floor, toilet and sink in the bathroom
  • Fix the leaky tub faucet
  • Have a plumber look at the rat's nest of pipes in the untility room and advise
You will save a TON of money and it will improve the whole situation to modernize this bathroom. Cosmetic Stuff
  • Remove the plastic stick-on tiles in the kitchen
  • Apply heavy, textured wallpaper to the living room and hall
  • Paint

These things seem daunting, but just do it. The textured wall paper will go up fairly easily. A fresh coat of paint on it and the kitchen will do wonders. It's cheaper than re-rocking the palce and WAY less disruptive.

Outside

  • New plantings

It's sale time at the nurseries. Get some new bushes and plantings in before winter. They will stay dorman and come in great in the spring. This, along with the new siding will do a lit to improve the curb appeal.

Future Projects

Home ownership is a lot of fun and you learn a lot. Enjoy!

Little Brother Buys A House

My little brother Matt bought a house last Friday. Today in the first of many such purchases, he bought a shop vac.

It's the house my dad grew up in and Matt is the third member of the third generation of the Pesotski family to live there. I lived ther for about a year after my grandfather (pictured above) died. My sister lived there for a few years and now Matt has lived there longer that he thought he would.


It's a pretty typical post-WW2 GI tract house. A 4 bedroom Cape Cod with a small yard. The yard may be small, but it grew some of the largest tomato plants (also above) ever seen. Like any house inhabited for 40 years by an older person and then by a series of young people, there is some deferred maintenence.

What I would do with this house is improve both its liveability and curb appeal. It's a good house for a young family, ut would not be real appealing in its current condiditon. Matt has some work ahead of him. Here's what I would do:

Do Today

  • Get the heating duct fixed
  • Clean the basement up
Its going to get cold soon, son! It's actually hilarious the run of events that resulted in the heater having an open duct to the basement, but this is a short space.

Top Priorities


The roof was done by a low-bid government contractor in 1983. It's toast. There is maybe one winter left in it, then things will get ugly. Do the right thing and do all four of these things together and soon. Get a nice color siding that matches the new roof. Of course you need to remove the sheds to do the siding. Also Important
  • Replace the floor, toilet and sink in the bathroom
  • Fix the leaky tub faucet
  • Have a plumber look at the rat's nest of pipes in the untility room and advise
You will save a TON of money and it will improve the whole situation to modernize this bathroom. Cosmetic Stuff
  • Remove the plastic stick-on tiles in the kitchen
  • Apply heavy, textured wallpaper to the living room and hall
  • Paint

These things seem daunting, but just do it. The textured wall paper will go up fairly easily. A fresh coat of paint on it and the kitchen will do wonders. It's cheaper than re-rocking the palce and WAY less disruptive.

Outside

  • New plantings

It's sale time at the nurseries. Get some new bushes and plantings in before winter. They will stay dorman and come in great in the spring. This, along with the new siding will do a lit to improve the curb appeal.

Future Projects

Home ownership is a lot of fun and you learn a lot. Enjoy!

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Sunday, October 01, 2006

Plan For a parade - Part Two

Who Do We Get? The obvious guy is Aramis Ramirez. An infield of Howard, Utley, Rollins and Ramirez would be the best in baseball and one of the best EVER. But he is a second level priority. This team needs more consistent starting pitching. They lost the wildcard because they couldnt count on the young guys in mid-season. Yeah, they faded at the end at the plate, but heck they scored more runs than any team in baseball. There were just days the starters did not perform at major league minimum levels. Primarily becasue they are minor leaguers. Dispelling Myths Will Barry Zito come East? Not unless you move the team to oh, let's say eastern San Diego and buy him a beach house and helicopter. Next Guy? Mark Mulder? No Frigging Way! Just once, I want a guy who has not had reconstructive shoulder work done. Brad Radke? Why is this guy still making big money? And another guy with shoulder trouble The Guy The guy I want is Jason Schmidt. Yeah making the move from San Francisco, one of the world's most beautiful places might take some convincing. Can we get Utley to take him to Finnegan's for a few beers and follow it up with a trip to one of the city's growing number of gentlemen's clubs? Yeah the Giants will want to keep him, but I think the Phils need to be aggressive here. This guy is going to get $9 million from somebody, lets make it us. The Rest of the List In order here are the guys you need to be calling, Pat. If you need a number or an agent name, call me. I'll handle it for you. But that's why you are paying Reuben Amaro, Jr., isn't it? or are you paying him to keep the 610 morning show team happy? Jeff Suppan - 190 IP, 4.12 ERA and on a PLAYOFF TEAM! Ted Lilly - 180 IP, 15 wins for a team in a rough division, 4.31 ERA. Enough said. Miguel Batista - 200+ IP, 4.58 ERA this guy is a horse, but give ups some hits. Adam Eaton - ERA is a bit high, but pitched well down the stretch Tony Armas, Jr. - won 9 games for a HORRIBLE team, getting close to the bottom of the list Woody Williams - only downside to this guy is that he's older than me. Playoff experience and a solid 3.65 ERA Too Old Greg Maddux and David Wells are great pitchers. Or at least they were. I know Maddux is only 40, but he had thrown about a million innings. The only way you can go after one of these guys is if you sign one of the above guys, but and still want to spend some money on a number 4 for a year. Neither will be around when my daughter is playing t-ball. Third Base

Aramis Ramirez is your guy. He can bat 5 behind Howard and this lineup will have opposing pitcher with brown stians on their pants and not from sliding. Recent rumors seems to point to him returning to the Cubs, So you will have to act fast and spend cash. The second tier here is a big drop off to guys like Tony Graffanino or Aubrey Huff. Aaron Rowand or Ryan Madson could bring you Adrian Beltre from Seattle as they seem ready to make some changes and have been unhappy with him.

Outfield

As I noted yesterday, I think we are stuck with Burrell. You need a trade for a right fielder. What can Rowand and Mathieson get you? Trot Nixon is also a possibility. He's a tough guy and good in the clubhouse. The fans would love him. I also think you need a guy who can play a little first base to give Howard a break now and then. If the proposed Seattle firesale materializes, find out if Ichiro is available. He could play right or center and bat anywhere in the lineup. Of course everyone else will want him.

Catcher

If you aren't bringing Leiberthal back, what is the plan? The A's have cooled on Daric Barton and he has had a few off-field issues, but umm, THE GUY CAN PLAY. He would be a young guy who could play a number of positions and could very well be the catcher of the next 5-10 years. You've got some flexibility here with here with Coste and Ruiz, so take a chance. Make a deal. the guy is in the minors, the A's are tough to work with, but that's why we are paying you.

The Bullpen

I think it's time to go with youth here. My space here is limited, but I think you need 2 arms. There are a million guys available out here, but even if you go with the youth, go back and get Rheal Cormier. The guy can still pitch and leftys in the bullpen are like gold. Whatever you do, don't lose Geary. Charlie

The guy lost us at least 4 games I can think of this year. There's your wildcard. Yeah the guys seemingly like playing for him, but they would prefer a parade. Make a change. Dusty Baker? Joe Girardi? I think you can do better, but both are available.

Summary

You need to make some moves, or this is another .500 team next year. Your fans will be in open revolt if you don't make some moves. Your players will follow. You've had success as a GM. We believe in you. Bring us the parade!!

Plan For a parade - Part Two

Who Do We Get? The obvious guy is Aramis Ramirez. An infield of Howard, Utley, Rollins and Ramirez would be the best in baseball and one of the best EVER. But he is a second level priority.

This team needs more consistent starting pitching. They lost the wildcard because they couldnt count on the young guys in mid-season. Yeah, they faded at the end at the plate, but heck they scored more runs than any team in baseball. There were just days the starters did not perform at major league minimum levels. Primarily becasue they are minor leaguers.

Dispelling Myths


Will Barry Zito come East? Not unless you move the team to oh, let's say eastern San Diego and buy him a beach house and helicopter. Next Guy? Mark Mulder? No Frigging Way! Just once, I want a guy who has not had reconstructive shoulder work done. Brad Radke? Why is this guy still making big money? And another guy with shoulder trouble


The Guy

The guy I want is Jason Schmidt. Yeah making the move from San Francisco, one of the world's most beautiful places might take some convincing. Can we get Utley to take him to Finnegan's for a few beers and follow it up with a trip to one of the city's growing number of gentlemen's clubs? Yeah the Giants will want to keep him, but I think the Phils need to be aggressive here. This guy is going to get $9 million from somebody, lets make it us.


The Rest of the List

In order here are the guys you need to be calling, Pat. If you need a number or an agent name, call me. I'll handle it for you. But that's why you are paying Reuben Amaro, Jr., isn't it? or are you paying him to keep the 610 morning show team happy?


Jeff Suppan - 190 IP, 4.12 ERA and on a PLAYOFF TEAM!
Ted Lilly - 180 IP, 15 wins for a team in a rough division, 4.31 ERA. Enough said.
Miguel Batista - 200+ IP, 4.58 ERA this guy is a horse, but give ups some hits.
Adam Eaton - ERA is a bit high, but pitched well down the stretch
Tony Armas, Jr. - won 9 games for a HORRIBLE team, getting close to the bottom of the list
Woody Williams - only downside to this guy is that he's older than me. Playoff experience and a solid 3.65 ERA


Too Old

Greg Maddux and David Wells are great pitchers. Or at least they were. I know Maddux is only 40, but he had thrown about a million innings. The only way you can go after one of these guys is if you sign one of the above guys, but and still want to spend some money on a number 4 for a year. Neither will be around when my daughter is playing t-ball.


Third Base

Aramis Ramirez is your guy. He can bat 5 behind Howard and this lineup will have opposing pitcher with brown stians on their pants and not from sliding. Recent rumors seems to point to him returning to the Cubs, So you will have to act fast and spend cash. The second tier here is a big drop off to guys like Tony Graffanino or Aubrey Huff. Aaron Rowand or Ryan Madson could bring you Adrian Beltre from Seattle as they seem ready to make some changes and have been unhappy with him.

Outfield

As I noted yesterday, I think we are stuck with Burrell. You need a trade for a right fielder. What can Rowand and Mathieson get you? Trot Nixon is also a possibility. He's a tough guy and good in the clubhouse. The fans would love him. I also think you need a guy who can play a little first base to give Howard a break now and then. If the proposed Seattle firesale materializes, find out if Ichiro is available. He could play right or center and bat anywhere in the lineup. Of course everyone else will want him.

Catcher

If you aren't bringing Leiberthal back, what is the plan? The A's have cooled on Daric Barton and he has had a few off-field issues, but umm, THE GUY CAN PLAY. He would be a young guy who could play a number of positions and could very well be the catcher of the next 5-10 years. You've got some flexibility here with here with Coste and Ruiz, so take a chance. Make a deal. the guy is in the minors, the A's are tough to work with, but that's why we are paying you.

The Bullpen

I think it's time to go with youth here. My space here is limited, but I think you need 2 arms. There are a million guys available out here, but even if you go with the youth, go back and get Rheal Cormier. The guy can still pitch and leftys in the bullpen are like gold. Whatever you do, don't lose Geary.

Charlie

The guy lost us at least 4 games I can think of this year. There's your wildcard. Yeah the guys seemingly like playing for him, but they would prefer a parade. Make a change. Dusty Baker? Joe Girardi? I think you can do better, but both are available.

Summary

You need to make some moves, or this is another .500 team next year. Your fans will be in open revolt if you don't make some moves. Your players will follow. You've had success as a GM. We believe in you. Bring us the parade!!


Plan for a Parade - Part One I had hope. And just like last year, they almost did it. The problem with the 2006 Phillies is simply that they weren't good enough. This was a .500 ball club that had to get red hot to get into the race, then faded when they just couldn't keep up the pace. To: Pat Gillick, Phillies GM From: Chris Pesotski, devoted and disgruntled fan Re: My Plan for the Phillies Future I know you are busy these days, Pat, so I thought I would put togther a helpful little how to guide to get us to the pennant next year. Please follow along carefully and remember to go get the 'Abreau Salary Flexibility' out of the safe. The Keepers Obviously Ryan Howard and Chase Utley are keepers. In my book, these are really the only stone-cold locks on the team though. Near-Untouchables Unless the Yankees are willing to part with A-Rod in a trade for Cole Hamels, Hamels stays. Brett Myers pitched pretty darn well after returning frombeging placed in time-out for beating his wife in public. While he is a distasteful human being, he's still a stud pitcher and the Phils won't get any value for him in a deal. He's your #1 next year. Jimmy Rollins is one of the best defensive shortstops in baseball and has good pop in the bat. He's not a typical leadoff hitter, but he's better than what's out there. 3 of the 4 infield spots are back. Shane Victorino answered most of the questions about hoim in the second half of the year. He deserves a shot to play every day next year. Good Enough To Be Back Aaron Rowand is nothing special in my book, but if he's willing to play right field, he can come back. I'd rather have Victorino in center, so if Rowand won't play right, he can anchor a trade for pitching. Jamie Moyer has earned the veteran spot in the rotation. I keep him for one more year. Chris Coste is an able catcher, but I can't imagine he can do this again. He's an excellent choice for a second catcher. Abraham Nunez is also a backup. He can't hit well enough to play third every day, but he's a guy we need. Michael Bourne needs a spot on this team. He's fast and plays the outfiled well. Somewhat Shocking If he can still play after what is apparently a complete tear of his groin yesterday, I think youn have to bring Mike Leiberthal back. He has done some nice things this year and he'll be a bargain. This team needs a veteran that knows major league lineups behind the plate and Leiberthal is better than anyone we are likely to be able to afford on the free agent market. Guys We Are Stuck With A guy who needs a golf cart to play his position should not be a starting right fielder in major league baseball. And he sure as heck should not be making $10 million to do it. Pat Burrell would be a great DH. Well, good. Or maybe acceptable. Except that he doesn't hit a lick when he gets the chance to DH. There is ZERO interest in this guy though, so we are stuck with him moping around the outfield and putting up meaningless, hollow stats in games that are already decided. I am not a Jon Leiber fan. He is an average starter at this point in his career. We need a designated fielder on the mound when he pitches and he is injured more often then Mike Leiberthal. That being said, we won't be able to pick up two free agent starters, so Leiber will be back. The Bullpen I think you need to make some changes here, but too much is unlikely. Fultz and Geary are back. They were solid, if not stars this year. Probably have to bring Gordon back though he is on his decline and that is an area to be addressed in the near future. The young guns, Matt Smith and Fabio Castro pitched well enough down the stretch to earn them a long look if not a bullpen spot in 2007. Gone? My guess is that Rick White and Arthur Rhodes are done in MLB, but Rhodes could sneak on the roster becasue he is apparently a good guy to have around young pitchers. Plus I like him because he HATES Corey 'Tub o' Shit' Lidle. Madson? The guy can't pitch. Sanches? We don't know if he can pitch since Charlie only remembers he is out there in games where we are winning or losing by 8 or more runs. Over the Side Bye Bye Randy Wolf. Making 9 million, coming off Tommy John surgery and ineffective are a bad combination. David Dellucci was an important pickup this year, but it became evident that he HATES the platoon situation despite being totally unable to hit left hand pitching. Thanks but no thanks. Jeff Conine is one of my favorite guys ever, but he's at the end of the string. I think he may find work again in the AL as a bench bat, but he won't be back Phils pinstripes. As I noted earlier, I'd ditch Rowand given the right situation, and I am not wedded to virtually anyone I have not named specifically. What do we do now????? That will have to wait until Part 2. Look for my solutions to the mess tomorrow!

Plan for a Parade -

Plan for a Parade - Part One I had hope. And just like last year, they almost did it. The problem with the 2006 Phillies is simply that they weren't good enough. This was a .500 ball club that had to get red hot to get into the race, then faded when they just couldn't keep up the pace.

To: Pat Gillick, Phillies GM
From: Chris Pesotski, devoted and disgruntled fan
Re: My Plan for the Phillies Future


I know you are busy these days, Pat, so I thought I would put togther a helpful little how to guide to get us to the pennant next year. Please follow along carefully and remember to go get the 'Abreau Salary Flexibility' out of the safe.


The Keepers


Obviously Ryan Howard and Chase Utley are keepers. In my book, these are really the only stone-cold locks on the team though.


Near-Untouchables


Unless the Yankees are willing to part with A-Rod in a trade for Cole Hamels, Hamels stays. Brett Myers pitched pretty darn well after returning frombeging placed in time-out for beating his wife in public. While he is a distasteful human being, he's still a stud pitcher and the Phils won't get any value for him in a deal. He's your #1 next year. Jimmy Rollins is one of the best defensive shortstops in baseball and has good pop in the bat. He's not a typical leadoff hitter, but he's better than what's out there. 3 of the 4 infield spots are back. Shane Victorino answered most of the questions about hoim in the second half of the year. He deserves a shot to play every day next year.


Good Enough To Be Back


Aaron Rowand is nothing special in my book, but if he's willing to play right field, he can come back. I'd rather have Victorino in center, so if Rowand won't play right, he can anchor a trade for pitching. Jamie Moyer has earned the veteran spot in the rotation. I keep him for one more year. Chris Coste is an able catcher, but I can't imagine he can do this again. He's an excellent choice for a second catcher. Abraham Nunez is also a backup. He can't hit well enough to play third every day, but he's a guy we need. Michael Bourne needs a spot on this team. He's fast and plays the outfiled well.


Somewhat Shocking

If he can still play after what is apparently a complete tear of his groin yesterday, I think youn have to bring Mike Leiberthal back. He has done some nice things this year and he'll be a bargain. This team needs a veteran that knows major league lineups behind the plate and Leiberthal is better than anyone we are likely to be able to afford on the free agent market.


Guys We Are Stuck With

A guy who needs a golf cart to play his position should not be a starting right fielder in major league baseball. And he sure as heck should not be making $10 million to do it. Pat Burrell would be a great DH. Well, good. Or maybe acceptable. Except that he doesn't hit a lick when he gets the chance to DH. There is ZERO interest in this guy though, so we are stuck with him moping around the outfield and putting up meaningless, hollow stats in games that are already decided.


I am not a Jon Leiber fan. He is an average starter at this point in his career. We need a designated fielder on the mound when he pitches and he is injured more often then Mike Leiberthal. That being said, we won't be able to pick up two free agent starters, so Leiber will be back.


The Bullpen


I think you need to make some changes here, but too much is unlikely. Fultz and Geary are back. They were solid, if not stars this year. Probably have to bring Gordon back though he is on his decline and that is an area to be addressed in the near future. The young guns, Matt Smith and Fabio Castro pitched well enough down the stretch to earn them a long look if not a bullpen spot in 2007.


Gone? My guess is that Rick White and Arthur Rhodes are done in MLB, but Rhodes could sneak on the roster becasue he is apparently a good guy to have around young pitchers. Plus I like him because he HATES Corey 'Tub o' Shit' Lidle. Madson? The guy can't pitch. Sanches? We don't know if he can pitch since Charlie only remembers he is out there in games where we are winning or losing by 8 or more runs.


Over the Side


Bye Bye Randy Wolf. Making 9 million, coming off Tommy John surgery and ineffective are a bad combination. David Dellucci was an important pickup this year, but it became evident that he HATES the platoon situation despite being totally unable to hit left hand pitching. Thanks but no thanks. Jeff Conine is one of my favorite guys ever, but he's at the end of the string. I think he may find work again in the AL as a bench bat, but he won't be back Phils pinstripes. As I noted earlier, I'd ditch Rowand given the right situation, and I am not wedded to virtually anyone I have not named specifically.


What do we do now?????


That will have to wait until Part 2.


Look for my solutions to the mess tomorrow!

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