Monthly Archives: November 2009

Sick … again

Whenever Maisa gets a cold, I get one a few days later.

What’s funny is that Jill never gets a cold. She certainly has a lot of other health issues to deal with, though.


Today’s trivia question: Who are the only two non-pitchers to win the Gold Glove in their final season? Answer below.


I had a dentist appointment scheduled for today, but I had to cancel. I’m feeling rough and I need to save my energy for a long day at the office.

We put up our Christmas tree a few days ago. So far, Maisa hasn’t damaged it. We’ve let her know in no uncertain terms that she is not to touch it.

It’s a nice tree, and Jill has pretty decorations on it. Good-sized, too. Jill bought it new for $40. A decent price, I thought. 


Today’s trivia answer: Wes Parker (Dodgers) and Roberto Clemente (Pirates)



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Posted by on November 30, 2009 in Uncategorized


Today’s trivia question

Question: Which five managers have won seven or more league championships? (Answer below)

We went to a couples shower last night for one of Jill’s friends. The friend recently found out she was pregnant. Maisa and I were home by 10:15. Jill stayed at the party a little longer because she doesn’t see her friends much anymore.

Answer: Casey Stengel (Yankees) and John McGraw (Giants) both won 10 league titles. Joe McCarthy (Yankees) and Connie Mack (A’s) won nine pennants. Walter Alston (Dodgers) won seven league championships.

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Posted by on November 28, 2009 in Uncategorized


Gotta love MLB Network

I finally finished watching Game 7 of the 1965 World Series. The Dodgers won 2-0 to clinch their fourth world title (they won a fifth in 1981 and a sixth in 1988).

Some observations I found to be interesting…

  • Check swings were not called strikes in those days. Sandy Koufax would have had at least 13 or 14 strikeouts in his three-hit shutout if they played by today’s rules. Instead, he settled for 10 Ks.
  • The fielders were very nonchalant, particularly the outfielders. One-handed catches and basket catches were the order of the day.
  • The Twins hitters probably put up as good a fight as anyone did against Koufax in those days. Minnesota fouled off a lot of pitches (Koufax threw more than 130 that day with a sore, exhausted arm).
  • Dodgers third baseman Jim Gilliam saved the day with a back-handed stop on a screaming grounder by Zoilo Versalles.
  • Don Drysdale threw almost as many pitches in the bullpen as Koufax did on the game mound. Big D warmed up in the first, the third, the fifth and probably in the ninth.
  • The Dodgers’ RBI men were Lou Johnson (home run) and Wes Parker (single). Both in the same inning.
  • Pitching on two days’ rest was not uncommon. The Twins’ Jim Kaat and Mudcat Grant also went on two days’ rest in the series. 
  • Koufax literally had no curveball in Game 7. He simply could not get it over the plate. It’s amazing that he was able to blow away the potent Twins lineup with just a fastball.
  • Twins legend Tony Oliva lost his bat three times while swinging. Announcer Ray Scott said Oliva was due to have surgery to remove a bone chip from a finger after the series. Facing Koufax certainly didn’t make his finger feel any better, I’m sure.
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Posted by on November 27, 2009 in Uncategorized


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I’m good enough, I’m smart enough … or am I?

I’m developing my share of insecurities as a father.

Sometimes I think I’ll never be as good as my Dad Leon. Or my father-in-law Clarence B. Or Tom W. or Loren L. — two of my friends’ dads. All of my friends have really great fathers, for that matter.

  • When I spend too much time reading the paper or watching TV — when I should be playing with Maisa — I feel like I’m lacking in the “Dad skills” department.
  • When she gets sick or if she falls and gets hurt, I feel like I’ve failed as a father.
  • When I work long hours at the office, I feel like Maisa is getting a raw deal out of it.

I’m starting to be pretty hard on myself. I feel that Maisa deserves to have the best Dad in the world, and I’m not quite there yet — not even close, frankly.

I guess all I can do is try to emulate guys like Leon K. and Clarence B. and Tom W. and Loren L.

Do any of you have similar feelings about your skills as a father/mother?

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Posted by on November 27, 2009 in Uncategorized



Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!

We’re all thankful for the same things — food, family, friends, health.

This year, I thought I’d compile a list of the things I’ve come to be thankful for in 2009. Things I failed to appreciate before this year:

  • Creamy tomato soup: Seriously, this is one of my favorite foods now. Half soup, half milk. Perfectly delicious.
  • The public library: What a terrific resource for our community. That place has everything, and it doesn’t cost me a dime.
  • Kindness of strangers: People we barely knew really helped us out this year when Jill was sick and I was furloughed.
  • Old movies: I never watched them before this year much, but I’m starting to appreciate them for what they are.
  • Beating the Cardinals: The Dodgers never had much luck against St. Louis — until this year’s NL playoffs.
  • Coffee: I started drinking it for the first time early this year. Couldn’t have started at a better time, considering I now average about 6 hours of sleep per day.
  • Green tea: I’m guilty of being persuaded by Joe Torre’s spokesmanship for Bigelow Green Tea. Pretty lame, I know. I’ve heard it’s good for you, so that’s a bonus.
  • Mayo Clinic: After doctors in Des Moines and Iowa City failed to help Jill with her pelvic fractures, the Mayo staff finally gave her some relief.
  • Lady Antebellum, Taylor Swift: 2009 was the year of Lady A and Swiftie.
  • The kids room at the gym: I still don’t get nearly enough exercise, but this has helped me get to the gym at least once a week or so.
  • “Mad Men”: The best show on TV. By a mile.
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Posted by on November 26, 2009 in Uncategorized



More about Sandy

I’ve been scanning my favorite Web site,, today. As usual, I learned a lot of interesting stuff.

The most incredible thing I learned today — Sandy Koufax was a unanimous pick for each of his three Cy Young Awards (1963, 1965, 1966). That’s absolutely stunning and a tribute to Koufax’s greatness.

What makes it even more impressive is the fact that only one Cy Young Award winner was selected in those days. (As opposed to today, when each league has a Cy Young).

The 1963 voting: Koufax received 20 of 20 first-place votes.

The 1965 voting: Koufax received 20 of 20 first-place votes.

The 1966 voting: Koufax received 20 of 20 first-place votes.

What a stud.

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Posted by on November 25, 2009 in Uncategorized


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What’s on the tube?

What TV shows are you all watching this fall?

Jill and I haven’t really picked up any new shows. I thought “V” looked good, but Jill is afraid of extraterrestrial beings. She watches a lot of reality shows, but I generally don’t enjoy them much.

I watched an episode of “NCIS: Los Angeles” last week and found it to be pretty watchable. Probably not every week, though.

So now that “Mad Men” is over, I’m searching for a new show. “Breaking Bad” and “Lost” don’t start for a few months, and I’m out in the cold.

What are you watching? Any suggestions?

I tend to enjoy serial dramas such as “Mad Men” or “Dallas” or the original “Melrose Place” — shows like that are my preference.

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Posted by on November 25, 2009 in Uncategorized