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Saturday, April 19, 2008

Just a Little Random

12 is the Magic Number.
The Avs won the series 4-2 after scoring first in every game and only giving up a first period goal in one game. The Wild were often more aggressive--they pushed the play, the got shots on goal, they hit hard and often. But the Avs had better goaltending, made more of their scoring opportunities, blocked more shots, and never seemed to lose their composure--something that the Wild couldn’t say after racking up over 100 minutes of penalty time in game 4.

Great series. I hope the next one is just as exciting (and blessed with the same happy ending for Avs fans).

Congratulations to Danica.
It’s nice to see that she is both hot and talented. I’d been wondering a little about the talented part.

Danica Patrick became the first female winner in IndyCar history Sunday, taking the Indy Japan 300 after the top contenders were forced to pit for fuel in the final laps.

Patrick finished 5.8594 seconds ahead of pole-sitter Helio Castroneves on the 1.5-mile Twin Ring Motegi oval after leader Scott Dixon pitted with five laps left and Dan Wheldon and Tony Kanaan came in a lap later.

MacUpdate Promo looks pretty good.
For Mac OS X users, the MacUpdate promo looks like a better bundle of applications than the current MacHeist Bundle. Of course, that’s assuming that they reach the target sales goal and actually release all of the applications to they buyers. There are a few useful applications in it that I’d been thinking about buying, so I’ll be ponying up for the bundle.

Oprah is a pusher.
I try to stay nice on the subject of Oprah since there is much to admire. Her charities have done real good in the world, she’s risen to become one of the most powerful people in American entertainment, and the girl likes her enough to subscribe to her magazine. For that matter, she’s got all the business savvy that Donald Trump wishes he had--and he has the bankruptcy filings to prove it.

Anyway, where my admiration stops is right at the edge of her social and political commentary--commentary that leans less on thinking and more on feeling. That is doubly so when she’s pushing a self-help title of the nature of The Secret. Her new business venture with Eckhart Tolle, though, makes her seem more like a huckster than a reputable businessperson.

Disappointing isn’t a big enough word.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Colin McRae Has Died

Sad news for anyone who follows motorsports around the world: the former World Rally Champion Colin McRae has died along with three others, including his son, in a helicopter crash.

Jean-Eric Freudiger, McRae’s agent, said the 39-year-old driver had been piloting the helicopter himself. Also on board were believed to be his son Johnny, another adult - said by locals to be a school friend of McRae - and another child. McRae’s wife Alison and their daughter Hollie, 9, were not on board, friends said.

Strathclyde police said in a statement: “Four people were onboard the helicopter,” adding “The bodies were found within the helicopter which is owned by Mr Colin McRae of Jerviswood House, Lanark. It is believed he was onboard the helicopter.”

He was a talented, if controversial, driver. Many thought that he was overly aggressive or even reckless; all I know is that watching film of him drive was thrilling.

Sad news for fans and truly tragic news for his loved ones.

Read the rest.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Big Fine for Belichick (Updated)

Patriots’ head coach Bill Belichick will be paying a half million dollar fine for his part in the team’s spying scandal--and that’s not the only penalty that will be paid by the team.

The NFL has fined New England Patriots coach Bill Belichick and the team a total of $750,000 for videotaping an opponent’s signals. The team also has been told to forfeit draft choices.

The Pats were caught videotaping the New York Jets’ defensive signals during last Sunday’s 38-14 win at the Meadowlands.

CBS 2 HD has learned Belichick was hit with a $500,000 fine by NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell. The team will have to hand over $250,000.

The Patriots will also have to forfeit at least one draft pick in 2008, but that will depend on how they finish this season. If they make the playoffs, they will lose a first-round pick. If they don’t make the postseason, they will give up their second-and third-round picks.

I don’t have a strong opinion about the appropriateness of the fines and penalties--I have no idea how serious or how important the spying was to any of the Patriots’ victories. The funniest part of the whole scandal is that, irritating as he is, Belichick really is a brilliant coach and the Patriots have had phenomenal talent for years. I doubt they needed to cheat to win.

Anyway, the penalty does seem on the steep side. Until you see what the FIA did to McLaren in their own spy scandal today.

McLaren have been stripped of their points in the 2007 Formula One constructors’ championship after the outcome of the “spygate” row.
The team were also fined a record $100m (£49.2m), which includes any prize and television money they would have earned from the constructors’ championship.

But drivers Lewis Hamilton and Fernando Alonso can keep their points.

The team must also prove there is no Ferrari “intellectual property” in their cars next year before racing.

One hundred million dollars.

Ouch.

For the record, I’m pretty sure the Patriots will be giving up that first round draft pick at the end of the year, too. If they don’t make the playoffs, I’ll be shocked.

Update: Kindly linked by Nathan who is one of many voices who think that the Patriots got off a bit light.

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