Preservation Hall Jazz Band – Go To The Mardi Gras

I'd rub it in by saying that I know it's a regular old tuesday everywhere else, but we're partying like it's going out of style (even if the weather is 36˚ and raining...). Seriously, never seen a crowd this deep and crazy during mardi gras before. Enjoy your Feburary Tuesday, citizens, but y'all should really consider a trip to NOLA for the parade season sometime. I'll be happy to meet anyone in front of Johnny White's pub on the corner of Orleans and Bourbon any day of the week.

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Happy Birthday–February 16

Alex Ferguson (1897)
Parnell Woods (1912)
Creepy Crespi (1918)
Atsushi Aramaki (1926)
Bobby Darwin (1943)
Terry Crowley (1947)
Bob Didier (1949)
Glenn Abbott (1951)
Jerry Hairston (1952)
Barry Foote (1952)
Bill Pecota (1960)
Eric Bullock (1960)
Dwayne Henry (1962)
Jerome Bettis (1972)
Eric Byrnes (1976)
Tommy Milone (1987)

Parnell Woods was an infielder in the Negro Leagues for fourteen years.  He later became the business manager for the Harlem Globetrotters.

Atsushi Aramaki was a dominant pitcher in Japan in the 1950s and is a member of the Japanese Baseball Hall of Fame.

Better known as an NFL running back, Jerome Bettis is a part-owner of the Altoona Curve and the State College Spikes.

Continue reading Happy Birthday--February 16

Happy Birthday–February 15

Sliding Billy Hamilton (1866)
Charlie Irwin (1869)
Jimmy Ring (1895)
George Earnshaw (1900)
Larry Goetz (1900)
Lorenzo Ponza (1915)
Chuck Estrada (1938)
Ron Cey (1948)
Rick Auerbach (1950)
Joe Hesketh (1959)
Mark Davidson (1961)
Melido Perez (1966)
Ugueth Urbina (1974)
Alex Gonzalez (1977)
Luis Ugueto (1979)

Lorenzo Ponza invented the modern pitching machine.

Larry Goetz was a National League umpire from 1936-1957.

Continue reading Happy Birthday--February 15

Will it ever end?

We've gotten nailed by blizzards the last four Mondays (min 5, max 12").  So even though my half-marathon training has been impacted - not doing early week runs (hate running on a treadmill), we've still been able to get in the Saturday morning long-runs.

Today was our taper (only 5 miles) before next weekend's Half -  a cold run at 8F - but no wind.  I'm really sore from all of the snow-blowing and shovelling.  And we're forecasting to get 8 more inches this evening.

The folks at Hyannis hosting the Half Marathon sent out a notice that it might be cancelled/rescheduled as they already have a bunch of snow on the ground, are getting more today, and are forecasting to get more next weekend - no place for parking, streets difficult to run, safety concerns for volunteers/runners...

Happy Birthday–February 14

Joe Gerhardt (1855)
Arthur Irwin (1858)
Morgan Murphy (1867)
Candy LaChance (1870)
Bob Quinn (1870)
Earl Smith (1897)
Mel Allen (1913)
Red Barrett (1915)
Len Gabrielson (1940)
Ken Levine (1950)
Larry Milbourne (1951)
Will McEnaney (1952)
Dave Dravecky (1956)
Alejandro Sanchez (1959)
John Marzano (1963)
Kelly Stinnett (1970)
Damaso Marte (1975)

Bob Quinn was a long-time executive for the St. Louis Browns, the Boston Red Sox, and the Boston Braves.  He was later the director of the Hall of Fame.

Ken Levine has been a broadcaster for Baltimore, San Diego, and Seattle.  He has also worked on a number of television programs, notably including "Cheers" and "Frazier".

John Marzano was drafted by Minnesota in the third round in 1981, but he did not sign.

We would also like to wish a very happy birthday to Mother 6.

Continue reading Happy Birthday--February 14

Wilderness Music Day

This afternoon, I'm leaving for a weekend getaway for EAR and myself.
Camper Cabins at Afton State Park, my folks are taking the kids.
Sometimes walking in the woods in winter can be good for things like what Saul Williams talks about here:

Not until you've listen to Rakim on a rocky mountain top
Have you heard hip hop
And let a open wide country side illustrate it
Riding in a freight train
In the freezing rain
Listening to Coltrane
My reality went insane
....
The trains and planes can corrupt and obstruct your planes of thought
So you that forget how to walk through the woods
Which ain't good cuz you ain't never walked through the trees
Listenin' to nobody beats the biz and you ain't never heard hip hop

Not often hip-hop though. More techno and industrial. I liked Carl Craig's Paperclip People or Coil.
But the forecast is a high of 4F, and that's too cold for my headphones. The wires stiffen and pull the earbuds right out my ears.

Not that walks through the park with someone are for headphone listening anyways.

Happy Birthday–February 12

Pants Rowland (1879)
Chick Hafey (1903)
Dom DiMaggio (1917)
Joe Garagiola (1926)
Pat Dobson (1942)
Mike Martin (1944)
Ray Corbin (1949)
Lenny Randle (1949)
Don "Full Pack" Stanhouse (1951)
Cam Bonifay (1952)
Chet Lemon (1955)
Greg Johnston (1955)
Joe Bitker (1964)
Ryan Lefebvre (1971)
Cole De Vries (1985)

Clarence "Pants' Rowland spent his life in baseball.  A catcher, he went on to manage the Chicago White Sox to the World Championship in 1917.  He was an American League umpire from 1923-1927.  He was also a minor league manager and executive, and was president of the Pacific Coast League from 1944-1954.  He is a member of the Pacific Coast League Hall of Fame.

Mike Martin has won over 1,800 games as the head coach of Florida State.

Cam Bonifay was the general manager of the Pittsburgh Pirates from 1993-2001 and is currently working in the Cincinnati organization.

Ryan Lefebvre appeared in six minor league games for the Watertown Indians in 1993.  He was a Twins broadcaster in the 1997 and 1998 before moving to Kansas City in 1999, where he has been a broadcaster for the Royals ever since.

Joe Bitker was drafted by Minnesota in the sixth round in the 1984 January draft, but he did not sign.

This is a great day for players with colorful nicknames.  In addition to those listed above, we have Sweetbread Bailey (1895), Kiddo Davis (1902), Dutch Dietz (1912), and Monk Dubiel (1918).

Continue reading Happy Birthday--February 12

Happy Birthday–February 11

Jimmy Ryan (1863)
Kenjiro Tamiya (1928)
George Alusik (1935)
Ollie Brown (1944)
Ben Oglivie (1949)
Tom Veryzer (1953)
Todd Benzinger (1963)
Scott Pose (1967)
J. R. Towles (1984)

Kenjiro Tamiya is a member of the Japanese Baseball Hall of Fame, playing from 1949-1963.  He began as a pitcher, and came within one out of pitching the first perfect game in Nippon Pro Baseball history.  A shoulder injury required him to switch to the outfield in 1952.  He was a seven-time all-star.

We would also like to wish a very happy birthday to Moss.

Continue reading Happy Birthday--February 11

Happy Birthday–February 10

Horace Wilson (1845)
Jim Keenan (1858)
Curt Welch (1862)
Billy Evans (1884)
Herb Pennock (1894)
Bill Adair (1913)
Allie Reynolds (1917)
George Sobek (1920)
Randy Jackson (1926)
Billy O'Dell (1933)
Dick Bogard (1937)
Jim Barr (1948)
Larry McWilliams (1954)
Lenny Dykstra (1963)
Lenny Webster (1965)
Jayhawk Owens (1969)
Alberto Castillo (1970)
Bobby Jones (1970)
Kevin Sefcik (1971)
Lance Berkman (1976)
Cesar Izturis (1980)
Duke Welker (1986)
Liam Hendriks (1989)

Horace Wilson was an American professor English at Tokyo University.  He is credited with introducing baseball to Japan in either 1872 or 1873.

Billy Evans was the youngest umpire in major league history, starting his career at age 22.  He was an American League umpire from 1906-1027.  He would later become general manager of the Cleveland Indians and the Detroit Tigers, and was president of the Southern Association from 1942-1946.

Bill Adair was a long-time minor league player (1935-1956) and manager (1949-1973).  He also was the scout credited with signing Andre Dawson and Tim Raines.

George Sobek was a long-time scout for the White Sox, credited with signing Denny McLain, Steve Trout, and Mike Squires.  He also played in the NBA and was a long-time college basketball referee.

Another long-time scout, Dick Bogard played in the minors for six years, managed for three, and was a scout for nearly thirty years, mostly for Houston and Oakland.  He is credited with signing Walt Weiss, Jason Giambi, and Ben Grieve.

Jim Barr was drafted six different times before finally signing.  Minnesota drafted him in the sixth round of the January Secondary draft in 1970, but he did not sign.

Today is also the birthday of Twins prospect Max Kepler (1993).

Continue reading Happy Birthday--February 10

Remodeled basement. Same half-baked taste.