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Monday, March 31, 2008

Congratulations to Andres Romero!

Argentina's big hope in the game of golf won his first PGA championship earlier today. In the picture he waves the winner's trophy following his victory in the PGA Zurich Classic golf tournament at TPC Louisiana in Avondale, La., Sunday, March 30, 2008. He raked in over a million bucks for his victory! The guy is only 26 years old and you have to like the guys chances to win a major. He already proved at last year's British Open that he's got game.

Baseball is back! HALLELLUJAH!

Oh man its great to have baseball back and how could it have started any better than with the Nats walk off home run victory over the Braves tonight twenty blocks from where I type these words. I elected not to go to this game beacuse I was a bit tired today from a raging birthday party but we've got tickets to a bunch of games and I can't wait to make my presence felt at the new stadium. I will say it is high time Teddy Roosevelt win the President's race!

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Thing of beauty...

Yup the original Joao Gilberto "Chega de Saudade" lp Odeon blue label almost turqoise really (as opposed to the second one with the white and green triangle). This came out in 1959 and is the LP that really kicked off the bossa nova (no folks it was not Getz/Gilberto).

Sunday, March 16, 2008


Free Tibet! We find the illegal actions of the Chinese government in occupied Tibet completely unacceptable. You going to ban this blog in China????
China out of Tibet!

Friday, March 14, 2008

Those old scratchy blue note LPs

Man I guess I'm weird but I can listen to the old scratchy blue note lps (or classic prestige lps too for that matter).... The sound is so good on these puppies and the historical significance/rarity of these lps such that I somehow can listen to them even when they are really banged up..I guess what choice do I have if I want to listen to the original lp? I can't well afford to pay $1000 and outbid some japanese dealer particularly now that the dollar is so weak its almost impossible to get your hands on one of these puppies even if you want to bid on it on Ebay... I guess I hadn't thought of it but with the dollar depreciating as much as it has its no wonder that the old jazz lps targeted by japanese collectors and dealers are completely out of reach.. still for some reason I can sit through almost any noise when listening to these old ones... I know that most people would rather listen to the clean newly issued latest remaster or even a repressing but that just ain't me.. it means something to me to have the original... that original carries a lot of history with it.. its been around for 50 years plus...Just got my hands on a few real rarities and I'll be sharing my impressions on them...

Holy cow!

Just realized this week marks the 50th anniversary of the recording of Cannonball Adderley's "Somethin' Else"! An incredible session what with the following lineup (information from
BLP 1595 Cannonball Adderley - Somethin' Else Miles Davis (tp -1/4) Cannonball Adderley (as) Hank Jones (p) Sam Jones (b) Art Blakey(d)
Rudy Van Gelder Studio, Hackensack, NJ, March 9, 1958
1. tk.2
Autumn Leaves
2. tk.3
Love For Sale
3. tk.4
Somethin' Else
4. tk.6
One For Daddy-O
5. tk.11
Dancing In The Dark

Definetly one of those albums I can listen to whenever and still get something out of... I suppose we'll be debating the extent of Miles' role on this one (did he dominate the sessions? was it really an album Miles wanted to cut for Blue Note but couldn't because of his recording contract so he let Cannonball take the credit? My gut and brain tell me no.. this was a Cannonball date although Miles did give him a huge assist...I say that cause Miles would never have given up wasn't his style.. his style was to take all the credit whether he in fact deserved it or not (see "Kind of Blue" where he refused to give Bill Evans any songwriting co-credit..something Evans' felt jipped about til his dying day). What an incredible lineup.. I mean Miles and Blakey on the same date? You've got to be kidding me...

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

the Pogues at the 9:30 Club Washington D.C. Photographs March 10, 2008

The St. Patrick's day festivities started a week early this year...undoubtedly the best part of the shows was that Phillip Chevron (he of the guitar) was again with the band after a year break to deal with his health..he played well.. and he sang well during thousands are sailing (a song he wrote and that when he performed in chicago he used to plug obama as his ancestors also sailed from ireland!)...

Shane Macgowan was very with it.. more so March 10 than March 9 I thought or maybe I was less so March 10 than March 9! he even cracked a "joke" about Chevron being "back from the dead".. I saw Chevron outside the club on Sunday in tights!.. guess thats why he uses the harlequin moniker/avatar on the Pogues board when he posts...

The show ended with Fiesta and some Pogues including Shane hitting themselves on the head with so called beer pans... the first night's Fiesta - closing number- featured these perfect chorus words: "ARGENTINA", "BOCA" (my soccer club from Buenos Aires), and "MARADONA"!! priceless! what are the odds?! Fairytale in New York which made me glad I caught them two years ago..they played about 110 minutes..very professional..i know cause i heard the sound check from outside the club both days and they were taking it seriously...chevron cut out on the sound check to go to hotel and rest... they had a guy that looked like a guy that gets things done..sort of lock stock and smoking barrels look with a black coat that was running the whole operation including SUVs back and forth to hotels autographs of my LP as much as I tried but I knew the odds were against time!.......

As you can see from the pictures Shane is filled out a bit but I think the healthier look works for him! The accordion player James Fearnley was spectacular..guess I had not realized how key the accordion sound was...the drummer sang a song both nights..Spider Stacy was also stellar alternating between singing, flute playing, bashing head with beerpan or whatever had to be done..really he is the band leader..Hope we do it again sometime! (NOte: the pictures were put up from earlier photo at bottom to last photos at the top so scroll up if you want to get a sense of the show)..oh one more thing: a shout out to Jonathan, Randy and John who made it a fun night..oh yah and rodolfo working the bar at the old common share now the Blaguard...

Apparently rock stars get a pass on the no smoking DC law... and you know what? I can live with that!

Friday, March 07, 2008

From following this election... get the sense that the voters might be more ready for "change" than the media. The way the press covers the election feeds into the Clinton's (and their consultants/operatives) old politics games. Now Hillary is "lowering expectations" for Wyoming and this is covered in a manner that would lead the voter to think "Oh how smart" when all it is is just plain old politics. So they lowered expectations enough to get away with losing 11 primaries (12 if you count Veromont) in a row and that was OK but it wasn't OK for Obama to barely lose Texas (where he will end up having won in terms of delegates) and lose Ohio and Rhode Island. No, you see my friends its all about the expectations not the votes! I guess what I'm saying is that for all of Hillary's whining about the media coverage - which worked like a charm by the way- the reality is that she has the experience to play the political game the way the media and through their lens the voters expect it to be played. Its tough to effect change when your starting point is the same old crummy election process. What was Hillary's comeback based on concretely? A press corps that felt it had been unfair to Hillary, misinformation and smearing (photos of Obama in strange garb, her appearance on 60 minutes where she stated "as far as she knew" there was nothing to indicate Obama was a muslim).
I haven't felt this down in a while actually.

From Andrew Sullivan- pretty funny!

An "As If" Personality

07 Mar 2008 04:27 pm

Psychologist Ellen Ladowsky examines why Hillary Clinton remains so creepy to so many. I prefer Hitch's formulation: the kind of person who never wants the meeting to end. If you've ever been on a condo board, you know the type.

Thursday, March 06, 2008

Fwd: Pro golfer Tripp Isenhour faces criminal charges for killing hawk in tree with shot

This is the kind of thing that gives human beings- and golfers in particular- a bad name.
Tripp Isenhour you are an asshole!


Obama was of course required to disclose his numbers for contributions for February. What I'm saying is that disclosing such a huge fundraising month doesn't necessarily help him going forward. It does have to be spun into "I can raise this money now imagine what I can do in the general" but this is complex given McCain wants to accept public financing for the fall if Obama will do so...

and on raising 55 mil

i think it almost hurts him to go public with this number and  i'll tell you why:
1. hillary can turn to her supporters and say "you see, we are being vastly outspent..we need your help"
2. i- an obama contributor- look at this number and think "shit man , don't come and ask me for more money! you already got 55 million and you need more???" i mean how much money is enough?? i KNOW i am not the only one who thinks like this... he had obviously tens of millions sitting aroudn before texas and could not figure out how to get to hispanics...if i was obama now i'd hire 20 young bilingual hispanics from florida to be my florida hispanic outreach team and send 5 to miami (including a plugged in connected cuban american or two) - and you know he's probably going to have a tough time with cuban americans given his comments about talking to any leader- and the other 15 i would disperse in the other cities (orlando, tampa, ft lauderdale, etc.)..  i would have them there just in case florida does a do over doing the research and talking to different people... he's got a huge problem with hispanics.. he can't lose both the white vote and the hispanic vote and get anywhere..he needs door to door knocking in the hispanic neighborhoods explaining the guy is not a muslim, that he's worked with hispanics as a community organizer (with examples and names)...
obama has to get cracking or he's toast.. his campaign seems lethargic and slow to respond... the response to the nafta leaks was slow.. the 3 am ad response should have been much harsher ("she's trying to scare you like bush did..", etc.)

Mama said knock you out

I guess I went to bed- after further reflection- feeling rather glum and the much needed sleep did nothing to change my mood. The way I have looked at this election to determine the candidate for the general election is that it is much like a boxing match. Unfortunately, Hillary Clinton has always been the presumptive nominee (even in 2004 if she had wanted it!) and as such can be considered the defending champion. As in boxing the challenger has to knock out the champion with a tie going to the champ. The challenger has to always do a little bit more because the "judges" and even the "referee" (and the media) have a bit of in built bias bred from familiarity and comfort in favor of the champion. There's an advantage of a shared history there. I think Barack Obama run a great campaign until the week before Ohio/Texas/Vermont/Rhode Island but while he's knocked down Hillary a few times such as in Iowa, South Carolina, the Potomac primaries, and Wisconsin he just hasn't taken advantage of these opportunities and knocked her out.
Hillary meanwhile has gotten back up stronger this time as evinced by her very respectable fundraising numbers as of late. I don't know if other Obama partisans share my sentiments but I for one am a bit tired and wondering just what we have to do to defeat the Clintons once and for all. Now that we hear Florida and Michigan may do a revote I feel it just might be asking too much of Obama for him to knock out Hillary Clinton. It is true that he leads in the delegate count and that the math favors him but its also true that nobody wants the democratic party nominee to back into the general election. Nobody wants the candidate who is doing worse as we get closer to the fall campaign to be the one to get the nomination. This is the great unspoken reality of the battle for the democratic party nomination.
At the same time the whole thing is rather depressing because neither candidate has been able to fully galvanize the party behind them and I do not believe a shared ticket will necessarily unite the party particularly if the primaries go on as long as they threaten to. A Hillary only ticket campaign, in my mind, presents the greatest downside for the fall election because african americans I do not believe will easily forgive ignoring Obama while independents and defectors from the republican party will likely not vote for her while the republican party base will come out of the woodwork to prevent a restoration. I have never felt that the likelihood of a McCain victory in the fall is as high as I do now.

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

election results comment

a fiasco.. so pissed...
this woman- hillary clinton- will not go away.
having said that my calculations (with an estimate on the still to be allocated delegates [12]) is that Hillary will end up netting 10-12 delegates last night... thats it!
Basically she got 190 or 191 to Obama's 180 or 179....
Of course the way its being written about in the media you'd think she kicked his ass.. and she did in a way... just not in the way that matters...delegates..there's a lot to be concerned about with obama's effort these past few days..
i have to say obama should hire me to run his hispanic outreach efforts because the incredibly abysmal performance shows gross give up the entire southeast of texas and lose it with margins of the 70-30 variety is insane...i think i have an idea of what happened though..obama spent far too much time talking to people in austin texas which he knew he would carry... i would have taken it to her in hidalgo county... making an effort counts... i also believe the "he's a muslim" smear has worked better with hispanics (and catholics).... my aunt received one of these emails in spanish in argentina (and she believed it too- the wife of a former ambassador!)
the second guessing could go on all week.. obviously the last three days the obama campaign completely failed to control the news cycle... was this in part due to the media.. sure.. but there are things you can do to improve your coverage too... i didn't see much reaction from the obama people.. the whole bit over nafta and his advisor meeting with the canadians -i believe- cost him at least 5% of the ohio vote..Obama destroyed hillary in the early voting in texas but there was a big shift to hillary the past few days..
so what does this tell us moving forward?
there are 611 pledged delegates at stake... to me the magic number is about 1627 or thereabout which is the majority of the delegates (not including florida or michigan)... i do not believe the super delegates will overturn the pledged delegates but of course this is what the Hillary campaign is banking on: that the super delegates will see her momentum in ohio/texas and states to come and decide that she does have the best chance in the fall or at the very least that they can feel free to vote for her regardless of the fact she has less pledged delegates.. then there is the issue of florida and michigan..i do not know how that will play out other than to say the delegates as elected will not be recognized.. but there may emerge a concensus that the states should re-vote and that if obama can't win either of these two (big) states he should not be the nominee.... i have to honestly say that as things stand i do not believe obama would win either michigan or florida.. certainly not florida...and this also could be used by the super delegates to justify trumping the will of the primary voters (ie., look its true that Obama did get the most pledged delegates but he would not have had he either ran in florida and michigan or had the delegations from these states been recognized.
obama is probably at around 1378 and hillary is at 1242 or so.... this means to get to 1652 hillary has to win X of the 611 (its like 1627-1242 or whatever her current number of pledged delegates is)... its hard to imagine this happening although it could happen....
the next few days are going to be rough for obama and he's going to have to come up with a new gameplan.. his national numbers are on the way down and his numbers vs. mccain are plunging.. this can't be good news..people will be focusing on these numbers and they are going to look bad for obama.... but he'll take wyoming and mississippi.. people will say they don't count or aren't important (one because its a republican core state and the other because it has a huge black population) but he'll hopefully net some delegates and steady the ship... 
then its on to pennsylvania where the state's profile doesn't look good for obama (at all!) with the second largest elderly population and a majority catholic population...