Been a while since I’ve posted something. Last week was a very busy week, and with what was unfolding in Boston, it just didn’t seem like the time to be posting a mailbag. Not that this blog is a news outlet, unless you consider mediocre gambling advice news, but I guess I wasn’t in the mood for the mailbag’s signature levity. One of the things you hear in the aftermath of terrible events like the marathon bombing is that now we’ll see what Boston is really like–the city will show its true colors while emerging from this tragedy. I don’t doubt there is truth in that statement. Boston, as provincial as they come, will rally around itself. It’s already been happening for days. But I don’t need events like this one to be shown the heart of a city. I am admittedly not a city person. I can’t envision a scenario right now where I would ever live in an urban setting. I judge cities through my brief trips, but more so by the people I meet and get to know. The qualities that will eventually get Boston past what happened last week? I’ve seen them all along. So, as we get back to more normal posting here, my thoughts are with Boston and the people who have showed me what the city was really about.
Q: I think I saw this the other day. A school bus driver, think off-duty, meaning no kids were on the bus. He’s in a parking lot. A woman is walking in the parking lot. And, I think he “tried to holla,” if you will. Can you hit on a woman while driving a school bus? Would this be the best pick up ever? Otto Mann, Springfield, IL
A: School bus drivers really have a certain joie de vivre, don’t they? I don’t know what school bus drivers are like now, but back in my day the ranks were populated with some real interesting folks. Our district had one crazy old coot, Hank (?), who every kid wanted to have drive their bus. I forget Hank’s exact routine, but he had a shtick. He was like Max Patkin–only at the wheel of big yellow. But, it wasn’t all Hanks. There were some real dicey characters too. I remember one lady sold the kids sodas. Sweet side business. There was the notorious incident of the woman telling me that our grass needed cut–think I touched on that before. The women were notorious bitches. There, I said it, but moving on…can you pull a school bus up to a stranger and pick up said stranger? I suppose anything is possible. I’d really need to see video of this meeting to decipher what was going on–pick apart the film if you will. Maybe this is what the guy is thinking. By approaching the women WHILST in the bus, he conveys two main points. First, I’M EMPLOYED. Second, he’s apparently trusted, by someone, to drive kids around. In today’s market that might qualify as a CATCH. For all we know, a school bus could be the new puppy at the park. These guys could be killing it with the ladies. Just kidding, I imagine the conversation probably went something like: Bus Driver, “Heyyyy, haven’t seen you at this bus stop before…” Woman: (calls police).
Q: Who do you think would do better on Jeopardy, football coaches or baseball managers? Turd Ferguson, Hollywood, CA.
A: I’m afraid that would be a case by case type of thing. I suppose I could speak in some generalities. Football coaches probably have less time to do Jeopardy beneficial things like read books? And, we always hear about the “smart” baseball managers. Football coaches are called geniuses at the drop of a hat, but that’s a football description. They are an offensive genius. Or a defensive genius. They may know NOTHING about EUROPE or POTENT POTABLES. On the other hand, I think we talk about these brilliant baseball managers, because over the course of a long season we don’t have anything else to say. Hey, did you know Tony LaRussa has a law degree? NEVER QUESTION HIM. And, that’s how Joe Maddon becomes Phil Jackson Jr, because he reads books and wears trendy glasses. All classic signs of dominating on Jeopardy. So, I guess if I have to take one, I’d take the baseball guys, because they are slightly less obsessed with their own sport? It’s a real tough question. How about my dream game of coaches jeopardy? I think I’d want to see Phil Jackson vs. Tony LaRussa vs. Bill Belichick. Those egos competing against Alex’s? You wouldn’t be able to look away.
Q: Why do we need TVs at gas pumps and what are the long term social and ecological implications? Pissed at the Pump, Phoenixville, PA.
A: Believe it or not, I think this is going to be a short-lived phenomenon. I think the people at the gas stations will soon realize that everyone’s phone is far more interesting to them than whatever they could show on TV. It’s not even real TV, it’s bootleg, pre-packaged TV. I can’t imagine anyone saying, “Oh, I’ve got to go to that gas station because they have TVs.” Like I said, you can just look at your phone. I always feel great about myself when I leave my phone in my car while I pump gas. LOOK AT ME–completely independent from modern technology. Of course, then I scurry back in there, PRAYING that someone has messaged me. No messages? But I was out there for an eternity. Anyway, a TV, or some distraction is a nice feature for a urinal maybe, but what purpose do I think it serves at the gas stations? DISTRACTION. They’re thinking maybe this guy will lose focus for a second and accidentally fill up his whole tank. Instead of “Give me $7 on pump four,”….BOOM–sixty dollars! I think some people that can afford to fill up all the way, just don’t these days because of the psychological toll. They put in $39 and fill up more often, just because they don’t want to see those meters run up over $50, $60 or $70. The other day I was filling up and some old-timer asked me for directions to the Valley Forge Casino. I said, “I’ve got a deck of cards in the car. If you want to just give me your money and save the hassle–I’m game.” But, he was insistent on going, probably a Wheel O’ Fortune slot man, so I have to tell him how to get there. Next thing I know, my tank is full. Ouch. Anyway, distraction–that’s my final answer.
Q: If you could somehow research this accurately, what percentage of pets do you think like their owners? I don’t want to get dark here, so I’m talking about people who take good care of their pets only. And, let’s keep it to the major pets. We all know that reptiles feel no emotion. Brad LaDoodle, Augusta, ME
A: I’m not sure what the MAJOR pets are. Cats and Dogs? This is an interesting question. I think the results would be a bit like asking kids if they liked their parents. It might all depend on when you catch them. You take your typical, happy family and the kids will probably say they like their parents the majority of the time, but god forbid you catch little Bradley after he got his video game device taken away or after he was FORCED to continue with his piano lessons. He’d probably give you some real COLORFUL language to describe his parents. I could see the same thinking happening for pets. What if your dog is at the tail-end of an six hour session in their crate while you galivant all over town? If I ask your dog, “Thoughts on Becky?” They might be all, “You mean the slut?” I think the moral here is that the world would be a lot more entertaining if all pets biting senses of humor. But really, pets are more like young children than aloof, awful, freak show teenagers. They rely on their owners for a lot, so that builds up a ton of loyalty. I’m going to say that 95% of dogs like their owners and I’m going to put the cat number at a bit lower, 91%, because some cats are notorious misanthropes and cannot be helped.
Q: Have you had a chance to try the new Entenmann’s Raspberry Crumb Minis? I want to dip a toe, but I don’t want to be disappointed. Minnie Danish, London, England.
A: Funny. What’s your next question, have I ever seen the Phillies bullpen blow a lead? Of course I have tried the Entenmann’s Raspberry Crumb Mini Cake. It’s in a very sporty package. Caught my eye right away. I don’t want to ruffle any feathers over at BIMBO bakeries, but I MIGHT have a few issues with Entenmann’s. First, the pricing is getting a little out of control. Let’s not pretend we’re some organic, boutique bakery on the Main Line. Know your role, Entenmann’s. You are a TAD ghetto. A while back I was having a healthy impulse and I grabbed some Super Cinnys and a bottle of chocolate milk on a weekend morning. Hit the self checkout, and the device is telling me the total is like, “$8.39.” I actually thought I had scanned something twice. But, no, those Super Cinnys are SUPER expensive. It’s cut into my Entenmann’s habit a bit. I’ve got to be honest. And, the miniature danish was never their strong suit. They’re just trading off the success of the larger products. You see a small little package and you think you are getting a miniature Raspberry Danish TWIST–but alas, that is not the case. Some of the same ingredients are there, but the composition is OFF. Same scenario with the new Mini Crumbs. Some good flavors, a possible step in the right direction, but still a sorry substitute for real thing. Entenmann’s is just not a single serving size company. You buy the whole crumb cake, and eat it in 2 days.
Q: Why do people insist on going through the NFL schedule game by game, before the draft, and trying to predict a team’s record? John Raworski, Medford, NJ.
A: People are starved for the NFL. Can you believe it’s been about 10 weeks since the Super Bowl. That’s a LIFETIME. I actually think they should release the schedule earlier, because now we’re right up against the draft. The draft makes the schedule release look like Spring Training. It’s another benefit of the NFL’s short season. No other sport could get away with something like this, but people can take the time to hand out 16 L’s or W’s. Speaking of which, here’s the Eagles rundown:
- @ Washington–L
- vs. San Diego–W
- vs. Kansas City–W
- @ Denver–L (ulz)
- @ NYG–L
- @ Tampa Bay–W
- vs. Dallas–W
- vs. NYG–L
- @ Oakland–L
- @ Gren Bay–L
- vs. Washington–L
- vs. Arizona–W
- vs. Detroit–W
- @ Minnesota–W
- vs. Chicago–L
- @ Dallas–W
So, 8-8. Unless they draft Geno Smith. And he actually plays. In which case, 4-12. Speaking of the Draft, I’m going to Mock it up this. Andy Reid is going to mess it up. I can feel it.