Monday, September 29, 2008

Elegy to Naugas

Hannah has her gymnastics class on every Monday from 4-6 pm. To keep my sanity and get away from having to make small talk with moms at Mattoon Academy of Dance & Gymnastics, Quinn and I usually go out shopping or run errands for part of that two hour block of time.

Today we shopped at Big Lots. As I was pushing Quinn along in the store,  I glanced at a "Durahide" sofa set. 

I was intrigued. 

What happened to Naugahyde? 

After much research on the Internet, I tracked down an noted ecologist who got his Ph.D. from the University of Okoboji. Based on information from his academic website, it appears Naugahyde is no more. 

Sadly, the animals that supplied those hides, the Naugas, are extinct. A beautiful, portly creature whose natural habitat was southern parts of South America, the Nauga roamed freely amidst cold and warm water alike. With its distinctive leather-like hide, the Nauga played and frolicked with freedom. The mating call of Naugas, I'm told, was reminiscent to the laughter of Dom Deluise

Those large water mammals lived in harmony with their environment for a long time, for millenia

Then the cheap discount stores came along. First it was Sears, then K-Mart. The death knell for the Nauga came when Wal-Mart came into being. 

All of them harvested Naugas to extinction. Those bastards. 

"Monday Morning SEC Insanity"

The folks over on Bama Sports Report have a fitting post up. Click HERE for a short and interesting read.

College Gameday apparently is going to Nashville this Saturday. That's right, Nashville. The home of the Vanderbilt Commodores who take on Auburn this Saturday.

Go 'Dores!

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Hangover Sunday: Georgia

Alabama opened another can of whoop-ass in the first half versus Georgia. The hype around this game was heavy: No. 3 vs. No. 8/10.

There was a blackout. And the Tide was the team that delivered it.

The Crimson Tide did get beat in the second half--30 to 10, which is something that I'm sure Coach Saban will remind his team. 

But the Tide defense played well in three quarters, and the offense made the game hurtle toward a major blowout. So UGA couldn't run the ball like they wanted, limiting Heisman hopeful Knowshon Moreno.

The special teams work on our part was atrocious. If that keeps up, I suspect we'll lose two games because of weak kickoff and punt coverage. 

Regardless, Roll Tide. 

The undefeated Wildcats of Kentucky visit T-Town next Saturday. 

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Music Friday: "Brakeman's Blues"

Click HERE to enjoy the Punch Brothers, a bluegrass outfit that features Chris Thile, formerly of Nickel Creek.

I recently got the band's recent album, Punch, and I like it a lot.

Have a good weekend.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Smells Like Energy

As you can read HERE, farmers across the country are now turning manure into energy.

I like it. I like it a lot.

Now if animal confinement facilities could do the same with their stinky lagoons, that would be great too.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

In Praise of Buttermilk

Although it's next to impossible in finding old fashioned buttermilk nowadays, I've taken a liking to the store-bought variety.

The product is misnamed since it's not buttery at all and has much less fat than regular milk. Regardless, it works well as a battering agent for fried foods. Southerners are well known for marinating their chicken pieces in buttermilk overnight before they fry it properly. It creates a perfect coating before you dip the chicken into flour. And I don't make skillet cornbread without buttermilk--it's essential.

I read or heard somewhere that drinking it settles the stomach. I don't know if that's all that true, but I sure like drinking a small glass of it from time to time. Good stuff, people. 

An Observation

At risk for channeling a sixteen year old girl's thoughts, John Mayer is a good musician.

I watched his performance from a couple of years back on Austin City Limits tonight, and he can play that guitar. He performed an excellent cover of a Ray Charles tune--very bluesy. 

Hangover Sunday: Arkansas

Well, the Tide traveled to Fayettenam and served up a can of whoop-ass on Saturday afternoon: 49-14.

This was a homerun hitter's game. Coffee had two long td runs, Arenas had a pick-six, and Woodall had a pick-six also.

Although I'm happy about the win, I see problems when we go to Athens. Stafford is a very good QB, Knowshon (don't remember seeing that name in the baby books) Moreno is one of the top five RBs in the nation, Georgia has a solid receiving corps, and they have a solid D. 

The Alabama D played well and took advantage of Casey Dick, who is, at best, a mediocre QB. But the Hog offense did complete a number of passes and ran fairly decently with their diminutive tailback. 

Since I'm an Alabama fan (people noted for never being satisfied), I wanted to see more sustained drives by the offense and Wilson hit some long passes for a change. 

I don't have a good feeling about the Georgia game.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

A Great Slate of SEC Games

This Saturday the SEC games are as follows:
Georgia Tech at Mississippi State
Alabama at Arkansas
Florida at Tennessee
Georgia at Arizona State
Vandy at Ole Miss
LSU at Auburn

That provides lots of great TV watching, especially if I'm in a good mood if the Tide wins in Fayettenam.

For one person's predictions, click HERE.

Conspiracy Theory

One of this blog's ardent readers passed along this forwarded email. I provide it to simply invite discussion, laughter, or ranting:

"Let me share some info with you that i have gotten from excellent sources within the DNC:
On or about October 5th, Biden will excuse himself from the ticket, citing health problems, and he will be replaced by Hillary. This is time to occur after the VP debate on 10/2. 

There have been talks all weekend about how to proceed with this info. generally, the feeling is that we should all go ahead and get it out there to as many blog sites and personal email lists as is possible. I have already seen a few short blurbs about this - the "health problem" cited in those articles was aneurysm.

Probably many of have heard the same rumblings. however, at this point, with this inside info from the DNC, it looks like this Obama strategy will be a go. Therefore, it seems that the best strategy is to get out in front of this Obama maneuver, spell it out in detail, and thereby expose it for the grand manipulation that it is.

So, let's start mixing this one up and cut the Obamites off at the pass - send this info out to as many people as you can - post about it on websites and blogs - etc etc if you have any thought or questions about this, please be in touch..."

Music Friday: "Thrasher"

Click HERE to listen to one of my favorite Neil Young songs.

Have a good weekend.

Good Publicity for EIU

As can be seen HERE in a university press release, EIU is doing a good job at having its graduates complete Ph.D. programs.

Not bad for a Master's level university that had a recent incoming freshmen class with an average ACT of merely 21.5.

We're obviously "coaching 'em up."

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Unveiling the Volt

As related HERE, GM has unveiled the Volt, its plug-in electric vehicle that they've been banking on.

The car can go 40 miles on its charge, which for many is enough for a typical commute. I may have gotten this wrong, but I thought GM was shooting higher than 40 miles. But I could be wrong. 

There's no price on it yet, but kudos for an American company for beating out Toyota and Honda in this sprint to be first. However, what matters is which companies can sustain a quality plug-in vehicle that is sensible for American families.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Hangover Sunday: Western Kentucky

When your team never punted in the game, that's a clear indication that the game went well.

John Parker Wilson looked good, made some nice completions, and the offensive line (with the return of Andre Smith) was dominant, as they should be against the lowly Hilltoppers. Backup QB Greg McElroy also looked quite good, and third stringer Thomas Darrah came in late when it was obvious that the offense was only going to run the ball. 

One of the best aspects of this game is that Alabama got to play many of its reserves to give them experience--lots of freshmen and redshirt freshmen. With only nine scholarship seniors on the team, the youngsters need "reps" in a game. 

Next Saturday the Tide takes on Arkansas in Fayetteville, always a tough place to play. 

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Challenging His Players

On Coach Saban's radio show this Thursday, he made this statement: "If [the players] don't do it this week and don't buy into the way I just said it, they're going to the scout team. And from the scout team, they may be going out the door."

After the Tide offensively sleepwalked to victory versus the Green Wave last week, Coach Saban is getting their attention.

That statement from the "Hey Coach" radio program reminds of one of my favorite movie performances. Click HERE for the link to Glengarry Glen Ross.

"Good ... because we're adding a little something to this month's sales contest. As you all know, first prize is a Cadillac El Dorado. 

Anyone want to see second prize? 

Second prize is a set of steak knives. 

Third prize is you're fired."

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Music Friday: "Ballad of Devil's Backbone Tavern"

I bring you Todd Snider once again.

Click HERE for a performance in Huntsville. The "Ballad of Devil's Backbone Tavern" is a song about singing in a tavern run by Miss Virgy.

"Life's too short to worry. 
Life's too long to wait.
It's too short to not to love everybody
And life's too long to hate."

Monday, September 8, 2008

Perhaps a Clairvoyant Dream

I had a dream last night that I was watching Saturday Night Live.

The skit was a satire of a Vice-Presidential Debate. I can't remember who played Biden, but he used the word "mularkey" a lot along with a number of references to Amtrak and his hot wife. 

The image that sticks out to me is that Tina Fey played Palin. Fey was all dolled up with lots of mascara and bright red lipstick. And as she debated Biden, she breastfed a newborn and held a hockey stick.

I've been told that Palin is a woman. I'm also aware that Obama is black. I recently found that McCain lived in a Hanoi Hilton.

I'm a good media consumer.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

I got this photo from another blog,

but I couldn't resist showing this artistry to folks who don't read Southern Saturday.

Sunday Hangover: Tulane

Hangover is the right word for Alabama's performance last night.

While the defense played well even with being on the field constantly, the offense struggled and only go in rhythm for one really good drive.

The OLine had the first team left guard playing left tackle. The starting right guard was out with a hamstring issue, so both guards were second-teamers. And it showed.

Javier Arenas, in one half, set the Alabama record for punt returns, but then he didn't play in the second half because of a hit to the head.

So if people heal effectively, the Tide will have its All-American left tackle, Andre Smith,and hopefully our starting right guard back for Week Three vs. Western Kentucky. And it's unclear whether Arenas, the first-team kick returner and cornerback, will be back for game three.

It was a disappointing game. Even though Tulane's D looked much tougher than Clemson's, you can't play down to your opponent. I hope that trend finally changes next week versus the Hill Toppers.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Music Friday: "Rain on the Scarecrow"

Linked HERE is one of Mellencamp's finest songs.

I've always liked Mellencamp, but I've never bought many of his albums for some reason. Rain on the Scarecrow was one I purchased on cassette back when the cassette tape was the most prudent option. 

The scenery in this famous video reminds me a lot of where I live now, Coles County. And we're not that far away from Indiana, Mellencamp's home state. 

His recent album is a dark and brooding opus. It's a good one. 

So the Question Is...

Does McCain embrace Dubya or distance himself from Bush tonight?

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Persona Non Grata

Joe Lieberman is dead to me.

That is all.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

The Chinese Restaurant

For Seinfeld fans out there, linked HERE is a five minute context of the famous Chinese restaurant episode, one of the best episodes of the series.