Sunday, October 21, 2012

Gators, Sox, Pats, Politics

Fall is slowly slipping away even though winter is still a couple months away.  Most of the trees in my yard have dropped their leaves, although one or two are holding on a little longer.  The sun shining through this one just outside our front door this Sunday morning gave us a memory of the beauty of this season.
Even our Golden Retriever Mariah enjoys taking advantage of this weather.
I'm thankful this week is bringing some rather nice weather to Southern Maine.  My winter supply of fireplace wood is scheduled for delivery.  At my age and mobility it's going to take some of the week to get the cord stacked out of the weather so it'll keep dry.  We've been buying our wood from Atlantic Firewood in Cumberland, ME, for the last few years and it has been excellent wood.  We expect no less this year and that will help keep our heating costs down.  But it sure does create a lot of work for this lazy old man. 
The sporting world has caught my attention this week.  First, of course, is the Gator Football Team.  Florida was one of the dominant teams in the early to mid 2000s.  That's the first time I've written that number and it looks weird to me.  Doesn't seem like the '90s, or '60s.  Yet '00s' looks awkward.  Hmmm.  I wonder what the correct way is. But I think you get the picture and I digress.
The last couple or three seasons have been rather "iffy" in the success column for the Gators.  They've gone through a couple of coaches, including Urban Meyer who brought the University to a couple of national championships before he seemed to lose his confidence under the guise of sickness.  Now we have Will Muschamp whose first season last year was less than spectacular.
One year later, the Florida Gators are back in the thick of things, undefeated after eight weeks, one of which was a bye week.  They're near the top of the major ratings, #3 in the AP and USAToday polls and #2 in the prelim of the BCS standings (#1 in the BCS computer ratings), and have returned, at least for now, to their dominance.  CBS, incidentally, in their promo for the coming weekend game against Georgia, said the Gators were #2.  If Florida wins that game, they'll be the SEC Eastern Division winner.  Once again, it's fun for us Gators to watch a game on the TV.
That brings us to the Red Sox with a new manager.  It was announced over the weekend that former Sox pitching coach John Farrell will be the manager for the next three years.  He'll replace Bobby Valentine after just one year of his two year contract.  Farrell was the Sox's choice last year but Farrell was manager of the Toronto Blue Jays and unavailable.  He was this year, too, but the Jays traded Farrell for utility infielder Mike Aviles.
We're really excited and happy about this hire.  After all, Farrell led the Jays to a better record than the Sox had last year and just beat Boston out of the distinction of being the cellar dweller.  In fact, Farrell led the Jays to two losing seasons in his two years in Toronto.  But he knows the Sox and understands the mystique that is Boston and he knows how to lose, so we're told he's a good hire.  We'll see.
Naturally, we have to mention the Patriots.  It appears as if the Pats took a page out of the Red Sox plan book, but they forgot to read the page first.  I think the one they ended up with was the one that said, "To successfully blow a season, do this: . . ."  Either that or the Patriots simply forgot that a football game consists of four quarters and not three.  Seems to me that after blowing the last quarter in their last several losses, someone would consider spending some time practicing to play that fourth quarter.  At least New England got this game into OT and won it with a field goal.
 Finally, since we're just now a couple weeks away from the election, here's a note about the election.  Does anyone find as sort of hypocritical Angus King's latest political ad that berates the use of  "out of state" money to "buy" this election by Republicans?  It seems to me, and I haven't done any fact checking on this, he is spending much more money than the Republicans and most of that is from "out of state."  There's even some rumor that the Americans Elect PAC, which is urging his support, is financed by several New York millionaires/billionaires and that King himself is responsible for the PAC.  If that turns out to be true, then it's illegal, according to election laws.
So the question is, if so-called out of state money is buying Republican candidate Charlie Summers, hasn't so-called Independent candidate King already been bought?  It would appear to me that King may be accurate in that money from away is truly trying to buy the Maine Senate seat so those investors can control even more of America.  Only it's not the Republican candidate that was for sale.