You won’t find me writing about basketball all that much because I am just not a big fan of the sport, but as a fan of all Detroit sports I do follow the Pistons and have some thoughts about the recent change of ownership.

Originally, I was hoping that Mike Illitch would be the new owner of the Pistons, just because he has a passion for Detroit and he always backs up his team with the money and support they need.  He finds the right people to get things done (Ken Holland, Dave Dombroski) and within years has another competitive team vying for championships each year.  Obviously, we’ll find out more on Tom Gores as the days and years go by.  We’ll find out how he manages the team (active or passive), how willing he is to spend his money, and how much of a fan he will be.  What we already know is that Tom Gores has a boat load of money to his name due to his venture capital firm which is based in California.  We also know that he is a pretty good looking guy, though his hair is a bit too puffy for my taste.  We also know that there is only one known photo of Tom Gores which looks like it was taken for some aspiring actor photo portfolio or something.

tom-gores-mug.jpg

We also know that it is about time we got a new owner for the team which was in complete disarray this season.  Joe Dumar’s hands have been tied from making the moves he needed to make, and the moves he did make just didn’t work out.  The coach didn’t have the respect of the players, and we seemingly had a Lord of the Flies scenario on the team.  With the certainty of the ownership in place we should be ready to see some positive signs around the corner and a rebuilding effort underway.

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American Idol-So Long Pia

I don’t usually get bummed about an American Idol contestant getting voted out, but it did bug me a little bit when Pia was voted out this week.  I think she had the best voice of all the Idol contestants…James Durban being a close second, but her lack of confidence really is what did her in.  She came across as stiff, even in her interviews and it just seemed like there was this emotional wall there that kept her from connecting to the audience.  Watching some of the clips from her earlier moments on the show, she seemed so much more relaxed and emotional while talking about her grandpa…what happened to that??

I can just hope we get another upset next week and Scotty McCreary will go home!

Detroit Tigers-The Season Has Begun

I have to preface any comments I’m about to write with the fact that I have watched exactly zero minutes of the Detroit Tigers series with the New York Yankees from this past weekend.  I have seen a few highlights and I’ve read a few articles about the games and I have a few thoughts that I just have to throw out there.

First lets start with the print media coverage of the team so far.  Bashing the news media for their ineptitude is fast becoming a favorite past time of mine.  When it comes to sports the print media is good for getting quotes and some inside scoops now and then.  Both very legitimate things I look for, BUT when it comes to analysis or game recaps it all comes from the blogs.  Not this blog, but the other blogs…the good ones.  In the pre-season the news media analysed the team by saying that the pitching was the best the Detroit Tigers have had since the World Series Champion year in 1984 and some thought it was even better.  Also, according to the local print media, this view was widely held by MOST media outlets.  They also said the offense was going to be a trouble spot, but the pitching was SOOOOOOO great, it wouldn’t be an issue. Let’s fast forward to the series over the weekend and we see that the Detroit Tigers pitching staff has an ERA of 7.92.  We also see that the offense has scored more than 6 runs a game.  Yes, I know it was one series.  Yes, I know it was against the Yankees.  Yes, I know the temps were pretty cold and that can really affect pitchers and their feel for their pitches.  My point to all of this is this “expert analysis” from the Detroit News this morning.  The author makes this comment after discussing the pitching woes.

But here’s the thing: With the collection of hitters they’ve assembled, the Tigers can play this kind of baseball, too.

Suddenly, they have a good offense…ok, make up your mind.

Anyway, moving on to the next topic: Ryan Raburn vs. Brennan Boesch.  You have Raburn who usually starts the season slow but ends strong.  You have Boesch who started really hot last year and then faltered.  So far this year Raburn is batting .333 with and RBI, and Boesch is batting .625 with 5 runs a homer, and 4 RBIs.  So what do you do?  If Ordonez remains out with his ankle soreness for an extended period then we don’t have so much of an issue, but if everyone is healthy then what?  You can’t keep Boesch’s bat benched, but Raburn hasn’t really done anything to deserve to be benched.  It has only been three games, but if this continues we might be seeing a change in left field.

Finally, anyone that thought Miguel Cabrera’s mind or body might not be into the game due to his off the field issues, well…he’s just fine.

American Idol-Cut To Ten…or not

This week on American Idol, the judges decided to use their one “save” on Casey Abrams.  This move is always controversial by American Idol standards.  Little girls everywhere contemplate how life can possibly go on, or on the flip side burst into tears of joy screaming endlessly.  At first I was quite happy that the judges used their save, but it was something that was very expected.  Casey is really talented.  He isn’t an American Idol, and won’t win the contest, but he is a talented musician and entertainer.  I’ve told friends that I could see him having a career like John C. Riley, which is great…just not an American Idol.  There is absolutely no way this guy will make music that people will buy.  He doesn’t have the looks.  He comes across like he is joking when he sings. His musical choices just aren’t mainstream enough.   All that being said, I really like watching the guy and look forward to seeing what he will do next, just like I felt about Adam Lambert two years ago.

In other American Idol news, this week’s show was leaps and bounds better than the previous week.  Who’d a thunk that Motown week would bring out the best in so many people.  The lone cringe worthy performance came from the utterly creepy Scotty McCreery.  He tried to expand his range a bit this week, but completely failed.  He missed so many notes and you could just see the wheels falling off, but what really surprised me is that the judges seemed to like it.  Not their favorite performance, but good anyway…HUH?!  It was awful!

Pia has such a great voice, range, and pureness, but she is boring.  She has to do something other than ballads.  Listen to the audience response and you get lots of applause, but it isn’t really enthusiastic.  Probably because she doesn’t mix it up and she has not personality.  She seems really shy and unsure of herself for some reason and it really comes across that way.  The judges are right…it is time to go uptempo.  I’d love to see her do Celine Dion’s I Drove All Night, or something in that vein.

I honestly CAN NOT understand anything Paul MacDonald sings.  I think he said “masturbate” during his song this week, but I’m not sure.  It doesn’t matter though, I love him anyway.

Those are some of my thoughts from this week.  Let’s hope Thia Megia goes home this week, or Scotty!

Mad Love vs. Mike and Molly

I’ve had a bout of insomnia over the weekend.  Friday night it took me forever to get to sleep and then when I did I was tossing and turning the whole time.  Last night, due to my lack of sleep the previous night, I went to bed early.  The problem is I woke up at 3 AM.  What do you do at 3 in the morning?  Catch up on some TV!  I watched 2 recorded episodes of Mike and Molly, and 3 recorded episodes of Mad Love two shows going in opposite directions in my book.

Mike and Molly started out as a sweet romantic comedy, but lately has gotten more and more vulgar, and less funny with each episode.  It seems that Mike is just a fat, lazy slob that is really taking his new relationship for granted.  Quite frankly I’ve seen relationships like this in real life and they never last.  This being TV, it will last for some incomprehensible reason.  What they need to do is give the audience a reason to think they are meant for each other…like the Dunphys on Modern Family.  The Dunphys are equal misfits and you can see why they ended up with each other and why they will stay together.  Mike and Molly consist of the lazy, fat, slob Mike, and the “can do no wrong” Molly.  It doesn’t work.

Mad Love on the other hand started strong and has stayed strong, the biggest reason has to do with the strong cash.  I’ve loved Sarah Chalke since her days on Roseanne, but especially on Scrubs.  She plays a very similar character on this new show, but she plays it so well.  Her chemistry with Jason Biggs is great…not forced at all.  Plus, they are both pretty funny.  So many times in sitcoms it is the supporting players that get the laughs and the main stars drive the stories.  In this case they get plenty of laughs and so do the supporting players.  My only fear is that the antagonizing of the obviously in love best friends will get old pretty quickly.  If that happens the show is doomed because there are really only four main characters.  If two become annoying…oops.   I’m keeping my fingers crossed that doesn’t happen.  I’m also keeping my fingers crossed that Mad Love isn’t cancelled, while Mike and Molly continues on.

American Idol-The Cut to Eleven

It was brought to my attention that I have not been blogging as I should lately, and that has to do with the fact that I’ve had some personal things on my mind recently.  Despite that, I HAVE been keeping up with American Idol very diligently and have a few thoughts below.

The March 16th episode was overall a disappointment to me.  Even the really good performers didn’t stand out this week, and I’m thinking that may be because so many of them were fighting off colds.  Let’s hope that is resolved for this coming week.

There are a couple contestants that I really like because they have great voices, or unique voices namely Jacob Lusk and Paul MacDonald, but I have serious issues with both of them.  They are consistently off pitch!  I think in Jacob’s case his vibrato and excessive runs will eventually get him to the right note or pitch, but he is way off pitch quite often.  My other issue with Jacob is he could never be a pop star.  He wants to go the R&B route, but he can’t pull it off in my opinion, but gospel is another story.  He could really shine in that niche.  Paul’s pitch problems are covered up by his cool sounding voice, which I really like a lot.  It reminds me of a James Blunt in some ways, but he hast to get on pitch and stay there.  I think he could really be a star…he has the looks, and the uniqueness that can help him get there.

On to Scotty McCreery.  I think we can all agree he has an amazing sounding voice.  This week he stretched his range a bit which was a long time coming.  He needs to keep pushing that, and also push it with the music he selects.  Keep it country, but rock it out…maybe T-R-O-U-B-L-E by Travis Tritt.  Move around the stage and really get into it.  The number one thing he needs to do though is get rid of that annoying raised lip Elvis thing.  The grin and the cocked head when he sings is so distracting.

Thia Megia is very boring and cookie cutter.  Whenever I see her and think about the fact that she was also on America’s Got Talent, I have to wonder if she wants this, or her parents want this for her.  Like one of those child beauty pageant kids.  She is so stiff and boring, I can’t think she REALLY has the desire to be a star.  Contrast that with Lauren Alaina who has a great voice, but who also is also dripping with personality.  She WANTS to be a star.  It is in her blood and I really think she can be, whether she wins American Idol or not.  She is goofy, to the point where it is a bit annoying, but she is 15 and acts it so you can’t really blame her.  I Really hope she goes a long way in this competition.

Those are my comments for this posts.  Yeah, there were some great performances and some bad ones too, but these were the big thoughts that I had in my head regarding this week.  Let’s hope for a better showing next week!

Main Stream Media and their Epidemics

February 12, 2011 Leave a comment

The main stream media has been a major irritant to me for quite some time.  One particular thing they do that really gets under my skin is when they take news anomalies and report them as epidemics.  I remember several years ago there were a few shark attacks off the coast of Florida and the news nationwide was proclaiming this a “Shark Epidemic”.  Reporters were sent to Florida and they analyzed the attacks in every way imaginable, scaring people and warning people NOT to go into the ocean.  The whole thing blew over in a week or two when another story came along, but for that period of time we were apparently facing an epidemic unlike anything we’d ever seen.

This is just one little example that sticks out in my mind and I’m sure you all can think of many, many more.  I don’t mean what I write next to generate political discussions, because I want this blog to be politics free (I leave that all on twitter), but I thought this blog post was both interesting and an opportunity to demonstrate how the media goes overboard.   The post is from my favorite meteorologist in the world, Bill Steffen.  I grew up watching Bill Steffen and I just think he is a great guy, an excellent meteorologist, and he puts a lot of interesting facts in his blog.  This post in particular talks about the coldest temperatures ever in my home town of Grand Rapids and across a large part of the US, back in 1899.  It is en vogue in the media to call every weather anomaly we face now days global warming climate change.  I understand that climate change is something measured over a certain period of time, which is exactly my point of contention.  Certain places in the U.S. get a couple bad storms or some cold temperatures and the media and the pundits come out in droves screaming the end of the world.  The 1899 extreme temperatures show another weather anomaly and as we can all attest, the world has not come to an end.  It is just another example of the media being the media.  Scaring people and creating epidemics where there are none.

Check out that blog post and see some of those amazing record lows in the deep south!  I can’t imagine how they handled it when so many of the people I know from the south shiver to death at 50 degrees!

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