Look: I am eager to learn stuff I don't know--which requires actively courting and posting smart disagreement.

But as you will understand, I don't like to post things that mischaracterize and are aimed to mislead.

-- Brad Delong

Copyright Notice

Everything that appears on this blog is the copyrighted property of somebody. Often, but not always, that somebody is me. For things that are not mine, I either have obtained permission, or claim fair use. Feel free to quote me, but attribute, please. My photos and poetry are dear to my heart, and may not be used without permission. Ditto, my other intellectual property, such as charts and graphs. I'm probably willing to share. Let's talk. Violators will be damned for all eternity to the circle of hell populated by Rosanne Barr, Mrs Miller [look her up], and trombonists who are unable play in tune. You cannot possibly imagine the agony. If you have a question, email me: jazzbumpa@gmail.com. I'll answer when I feel like it. Cheers!

Monday, December 30, 2013

Regarding the Lions

Lions football – Desolation of Smaug – Which is the vaster, more devastated waste land?

Ever on the alert for new ways to lose, the Lions, rather than waiting to blow the game in the waning seconds, blow it with fully 9 minutes left.

Then, the big challenge – could they hang on to this loss against the hapless Vikings?

YES! Yes they could.

It’s yet another 4th Qtr collapse, but a new variation on the never-ending theme. With 10 min left the Lions, ahead 13-7, had the Vikes pinned deep in their own end. They punt, Lions get the ball to mid-fieldd but NO! – a penalty on the run back takes them back near the 20.

On 4th and 16 the Loins [not a typo] punt FROM THEIR OWN END ZONE: 48 Yd punt — 52 Yd return back to the 7. Two plays later the Vikings get a TD and extra point to go ahead by 1. This is followed by 9 minutes and 19 seconds of pointless anticlimax.

Thus endeth yet another tragic season.

Regarding Tauriel

I suppose if you're going to invent a gratuitously plot-extending character out of whole cloth, you could do worse than a beautiful and totally kick-ass warrior elf-maid. Such characters are not unknown in the cannon.

And given the precedence of fluidly poetic elf names like EƤrendil the Mariner, Elrond Halfelven and Luthien Tinuviel, couldn't Tauriel have been given a more elaborately Elvish appellation; maybe something along the lines of Elvangien Lilliel?

Granted, that might seem a bit over-blown for a common wood elf.

But since the whole thing was overblown, it at least has the virtue of thematic consistency.

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Smaug Alert

"The Desolation of Smaug" runs 2 1/2 hours.

Three hours of that involved an intricate game of hide and seek deep under the mountain. [Smaug is THE most bad-ass dragon EVAH!]

Ten or so minutes consumed melting [or perhaps smelting] gold.

Another hour and a half involved hand to hand elv-orc and dwarve-orc combat in a variety of locations, and the mandatory beheading of orcs - which, I will grant you - is always a cool thing.

Exploring Dol Guldor - less than an hour, I think.

The really, really deep look into the depths of Sauron only took a few seconds.

The Athelas quest, only a few minutes, but the pig was annoyed.

You totally lose track of time in a spider cocoon, so I won't even guess.

Wholly made up adventures of 1) Bard, and 2) the absolutely totally platonic relationship between the unfortunate Kili and the lovely she-elf whose name I can't remember - Maybe a half hour.

Dwarve jail break was a barrel of fun that took less than 1/2 hour.

White water adventures - 10 minutes.

Hanging cliffs - 17 minutes, 27 seconds.
Gandolf - check.
Smaug - check.
Arkenstone - check
Kili - check
Bard - check
Legolas* - check

Did I miss any?

All of that said, though it was a bit overblown, I really did enjoy it.

* Yeah Legolas - deal with it.


Lyonnaise (adj): Cooked with onions. Ex - The Lions played today as if they once again ate too many lyonnaise potatoes at lunch.

Lionize (v): To treat as an object of great interest or importance. Ex - Now who will lionize the Lions?

Leonine (adj): Of or resembling a lion or pride of lions. Ex - Once again, the Lions were not leonine today.

Lie on (verb phrase): To recline on top of. Ex: Once again the Lions were found to lie on the ground.

Lionesque* (adj): Failing for no apparent reason. Ex: The Lions were certainly lionesque again today.

* H/T to my ivory-tickling friend Ryan.

Saturday, December 7, 2013

We don’t let gravity keep us from building bridges.

Steve Randy Waldman, while talking about the economics of inequality, mentioned in passing that the poor die with negative wealth.

Doesn’t this imply that their spending needs were greater than their ability to spend?

Doesn’t that suggest that if they had a little more, they would spend every penny of it?

Nor does it have to be technology driven. Maybe they get a third meal one day a week, a better pair of shoes for the kids or a new pair more often, a five-year-old instead of a seven-year-old used car.

Still – the economic and the moral considerations converge at the low income level. It’s true that economics is not a morality play. However well or ill we understand it, econ, as a natural phenomenon, is a brute force, like gravity. That’s why humans with a moral compass need to intervene. We don’t let gravity keep us from building bridges.