January 18th, 2009


Hubris, and the Bruins

While attending my granddaughter, Jessica's 4th Birthday party at "My Gym," I left this hectic gathering of relatives, friends and pre-schoolers to pull the BMW around from the front to the back to shorten the walking distance for Lin. In so doing, I caught the end of the Arizona State-UCLA basketball game, and listened, in the car, to the 5 minute overtime period, which ended in a stunning 61-58 loss. The Bruins were 9 points behind in the first half, 11 points a head in the second, and then went cold! Not a point in more than 12 minutes. James Harden, a Los Angeles resident, took the game over for the Sun Devils, and no one could stop him. Josh Shipp fouled him on a dribble, with the Bruins ahead, allowing ASU to tie the score at the end of regulation time.

Following the party, Lin and I drove my sister, Lin, and her husband, Bob, to a wonderful sushi restaurant a mile away, and I had the opportunity to ventilate about the usual medical frustrations.

When we got home, I dutifully watched the game knowing exactly where it was going, and feeling depressed, as I thought that this was a very good team.... not great, but a Sweet Sixteen team, at least. What I saw was hubris and then near panic as Harden took the game away.

This season, particularly, anyone can beat you, and you should never forget it. You're only as good as your last shot, your last defensive effort, and you've got to be relentless. There's time. Howland's a great coach, who learns lessons and accepts responsibility. The players are young. It's a good team, and even great teams lose....like the Tar Heels.

Barack Hussein Obama

The Obama banner is back on the Porsche and I'm wearing my Barack Obama (in Hebrew) button. In 50 years, they'll be saying, "Washington, Lincoln, Roosevelt and Obama," in the same sentence, and with the reverence deserved for legends.

As a near-raving Liberal, I'm not going to be happy with many of the compromises that Obama will make with the Left-Liberal agenda, but my little camp didn't get a mandate. We, Americans, got an extremely intelligent, clever, politician, an idealist, still, but with the sense to grasp the doable, and the ability through oratory and demeanor, to bring disparate polarities together, beneath the banner of America. It won't be easy, of course, or smooth, but we have a Captain, at last. So, in the shadow of Lincoln, this native of Illinois, this bearded fogey, not with stovepipe hat, but with pot bellied similarity to the stove, nonetheless, forecasts a time of American renewal and pride.... humility, reality, hard work.... a return to hope, and a path to change.
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Matthew Taibbi - Insight from a Lemon-sucking Curmudgeon

I criticized this political writer after reading a bit of his vitriol in a friend's blog, and then went on to learn a little more about him, and I must give him credit for his insights, if not his attitude. He is brilliant, erratic, seemingly, somewhat troubled.
But worth reading, as his forecast, or his pipe dream, will be coming true on
Tuesday. From Rolling Stone, December 17, 2007.

He even triumphs over his own cynicism, so I think I'll hunt him up and see what he's up to.