Tuesday, July 23, 2013


My apologies to both Alex Rodriguez and to any fellow Yankees fan.  It was not my intention - simply by mentioning the poor bastard's name in this space on Sunday - to jinx him or to subject the rest of us to two more months of watching David Adams, Jayson Nix and/or Eduardo Nunez play third base.  The pen is mightier than the quad.  Who knew? Rodriguez awakened this morning in Tampa - not in Texas - and his return to the Yankees, which was imminent as recently as Saturday morning, is now uncertain. 

Rodriguez's return may be a largely academic point.   If neither CC nor Andy pitches to the stat line on the back of their respective baseball cards during the final sixty days or so of the regular season, then Rodriguez will contrbute as much to the Yankees' success as adding more luxury seats in the Stadium's lower bowl would, which is to say not at all. 

This past Saturday marked the first anniversary of the Aurora, Colorado movie theatre mass shooting.  If only we the people of these United States could identify Aurora, Colorado as the last site of such carnage.  If only. 

On Friday morning, President Obama made his first public comments on the recently-concluded murder trial of George Zimmerman.  I care not what your politics are - whether you are a support of the President or not - if you are - as I am - a middle-aged, middle-class to upper middle-class white male then his point was well-taken:  there was a time in his own life when he was (or could have been) Trayvon Martin.  There never was - nor shall there ever be - a similar opportunity for me.  There is an old adage about the need to walk a mile in another man's shoes in order to fully appreciate and understand his experiences and his perspective.  In this particular instance, I cannot.  That being said I respect the President's right to say it - as well as the rights of others to express a similar view.  I must confess that I find the protests in various places - such as last week's in Newark, New Jersey - more directed towards grandstanding than effecting actual change.  Again, I respect one's right to express civil disobedience and in Newark - unlike in Los Angeles - the "disobedience" was certainly civil. 

Detroit, Michigan's bankruptcy filing last week might have struck you as curious - or even perhaps a bit humorous - as one contemplates how a major American city manages to go broke.  It is certainly not humorous, however, if you are a City of Detroit municipal employee whose pension and/or benefits are in jeopardy of not being paid.  On the CBS Evening News on Sunday night, a retired city chemist spoke with a reporter and told him that after having worked for the City for thirty-five years he had been collecting a monthly pension of $1750 since he retired in 2012.  The City's bankruptcy filing - if approved - would permit the City to stop paying that pension.  The retired employee told the reporter interviewing him that he/his wife are dependent upon his pension, which is $21,000 annually, to pay their household bills.  Judging by the neatly kept yet modest home in which the interview was conducted, I found his story very easy to believe. 

And very sad to hear. 


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