Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Reminder of the pleasures of baseball.
Incredible Movie Trailers

Taken3. This will be my favorite franchise until it ends.

After thinking about it and reading about it, ESPNs suspension of Bill Simmons reeks of deep corruption.

I heard the podcast live and thought nothing of it. Simmons calling Goodell a liar. Big deal! The entire liberal establishment called George Bush a liar about the War in Iraq. None of them got suspended. And the irony is that Bush didn't lie about WMDs. The intel was bad. And chances are, Goodell knew about the tape or purposefully didn't want to know. What a joke. I was hoping for his commentary on the Patriots meltdown. ESPN probably did him a favor.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Chiefs, No Joke

Boy, that was a whupping put down on the Pats. Maybe the Pats stink, but the Chiefs have played three good games in a row now, thumping Miami and almost beating Denver. They need to figure out clock management in the last few minutes because at the end of the half, they completely screwed up a situation to score another touchdown (not that they needed it).

Jamaal Charles and Knile Davis are easily now the best 1-2 running back punch in the league. Charles or Shady McCoy are probably the best runners in the league now that Peterson is gone. And Davis is FAST for a bigger guy. He popped through a hole early in the game and tore off a 48 yard run -- that was impressive. And they discovered this new tight end -- they are looking sharp on offense. If Donny Avery can stop dropping the ball (he usually does, but not tonight), they will continue to be a dynamic team.

Saturday, September 27, 2014


Book: The Rare Coin Score by Richard Stark

The introduction of Claire. A good one -- could be made into a small movie.

Logging: The Two Faces of January

A perfectly decent film. (emphasis on decent)

In my opinion, Kirstin Dunst is not attractive enough to inspire jealously amongst these two men and it was not a particularly impressive Viggo Mortenson performance. I will give him points for playing a different type of character, however.

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Shocking Statistic

Before last Sunday, Patrick Willis was only called for five accepted penalties in his career.

One of the bright spots watching the Niners this year has been Willis. He's playing awesome and is a joy to watch. The last couple years, he's been a little overshadowed by the play of Bowman, but this year is a nice reminder of how good a player (and person) Patrick Willis is.

The other bright spots this year:

1. Justin Smith showing no signs of age.
2. Carlos Hyde looking a little dangerous
3. Stevie Johnson looking like a good possession receiver

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Nudge Policies

Cass Sunstein and Barak Obama want the government to "nudge" people into good behavior. I, on the other hand, think the people ought to "nudge" the government into good behavior. After all, it was the US government conducting nudge policies which got us into the financial crisis (ie pushing home ownership to those who couldn't afford it) and the Iraq war (help revolutionize Middle East politics).

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

N Word

Kap used the n word, which is why he got flagged against the Bears. Note: I predicted this when it happened.

Several things:

1. I get a lot of NFL players will say things like this in the scrum, but its still a dumb thing for a QB to say.

2. But even dumber is to shine on a light on it by lying and protesting the flag. This is the behavior of an immature 17-year-old, not a leader. If you are stupid and get a penalty like this, keep your mouth shut and learn not to do it again. Don't lie and say you didn't do it.


Cartoon: Lego Movie

Didn't like the beginning or end, but middle was clever at times and had a few good jokes. Kinda-somewhat-meta-and-original.

Monday, September 22, 2014


Film: A Walk Among the Tombstones

Creepy movie. Almost a horror film. Some of the casting isn't great. Could've used a little more levity in spots. But overall, I still enjoyed.

I want Kaepernick's press agent. ESPN blogs he had a good game when he leads the team to score a whopping 14 points and loses to Arizona. The press coverage on Kaepernick is completely absurd. It was from day one. Why does the Niner run game stink under Kaepernick. When Smith was QB, we had the best rushing team in the league. Over in KC, Jamal Charles, arguably the best running back in the league gets hurt, they lose three offensive lineman, and this guy, Knile Davis steps in and is running for 100 yards a game and over 4 yards a carry. Explain.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Weird Play

Watching the Niner game and the Niners just converted a 4th and short. Before the play, Gore was whispering to Kaepernick. I think Gore is helping Kaepernick read the defense.

Saturday, September 20, 2014

How Gangs Took Over Prisons

In California. Good article. I'd argue, bad penal policies.
Capitalism, Past Its Prime

TV makers are pushing 4K television in homes. I predict this fizzles like 3D TV. Does anyone honestly think we need higher resolution than HD? Absurd.

As far as I can tell, companies are spending an incredible amount of resources creating crap to push on consumers. The computer companies are pushing consumers towards buying new computers. That's really all iPhone and iPads and tablets and iWatch and various "wearable" stuff is. More computers. Software and Internet companies are pushing consumers to spend more time facing their screens to attract ad revenue. That's it. They want content and games and eyeballs.

All of this is crap. This is not technology to substantially improve the lives of people. It does not inspire wonder. It does not advance human understanding. It is, in my opinion, a lot of waste.

There are major questions about the future that need answering (some bigger than others):

1. Can human life survive a catastrophic event such as an astroid, nuclear war, or a major solar eclipse, sunspot, etc?

2. Can the West successfully subdue barbarian movements around the world (most notably in the Islamic world)?

3. Can the earth sustain continued population growth and development of 3rd world countries?

4. Can we contain the skyrocketing costs of higher education and health care?

Those are just a few. And it strikes me, new technology could be useful towards solving many of these things. And yet, we're spending a tremendous amount of time, resources, and energy making crap. We don't get those resources back.

Friday, September 19, 2014

Kaepernick's Reads Aren't Right

From the Press Democrat:
A reporter asked Kaepernick if he felt he was in control of his game. Kaepernick’s response: “I’m not going to say I felt good about the game or what I did but as far as my decisions, I mean, I saw the coverages. I went where I wanted to with the ball.” Right. He’s supposed to see the coverages. But did he see what he thought he saw? 
Later in the press conference, a reporter asked Kaepernick what he saw on the incomplete pass to Michael Crabtree on fourth-and-9 from the Bears’ 17, the play that ended the game for San Francisco. Without anyone prompting him or pressing him, Kaepernick said, “They had Cover 3, we got the look we wanted, we just have to make that play.”
Coverages again. He didn’t need to go there. And he shouldn’t have, because he was wrong, dead wrong. 
The Bears were playing Cover 1. I’ll explain the difference in simple terms. 
Cover 1 is man coverage – defensive players chase specific offensive players around the field. Cover 3 is zone coverage – defensive players defend specific areas of the field. Simple as that. 
If the Bears were playing Cover 3 – a zone – Crabtree would have been the correct read and the 49ers probably would have scored the touchdown. Crabtree ran a route across the goal line and would have been wide open in an empty area of the field between three deep zone defenders and four underneath zone defenders. That’s if the Bears were playing Cover 3. But the Bears were not playing Cover 3. They were playing Cover 1. So, Crabtree was not wide open. He was smothered by the Bears’ No. 1 cornerback, Tim Jennings. And that means Crabtree was the wrong read, just wrong against Cover 1.

Was there a right read? Yes. Anquan Boldin was the right read. He was matched against a rookie fourth-round-pick safety, Brock Vereen. No one ever heard of Vereen. Vereen can’t cover Boldin, not in his dreams. And Boldin beat him easily, faked him out with a double move. Boldin raised his right arm to show Kaepernick he was open, that he had beaten Cover 1 man coverage. Boldin raised his arm as he entered the end zone with Vereen hopelessly behind him. The raised arm meant, “Throw me the ball.” 
Kaepernick didn’t see the arm go up. Kaepernick didn’t see Boldin. Kaepernick never even looked for Boldin. Kaepernick thought he saw Cover 3, so he made up his mind he was throwing to Crabtree all the way. 
It gets worse. Even if Kaepernick had seen Boldin, Kaepernick wasn’t in a position to throw to him. He scrambled as soon as he dropped back, reacting to pressure that had not arrived. HE dropped his hands and turned his feet to the left, parallel to the line of scrimmage. He was physically incapable of throwing back to his right where Boldin was. Kaepernick threw over the middle to Crabtree, the pass was high and late, Crabtree dove to catch it and the ball flew through his hands. It would have been a miracle catch if Crabtree had held onto the ball. No miracle for Crab and Kap. 
Let’s recap what Kaepernick did: 
1. Misdiagnosed the Bears’ coverage during the play.
2. Never looked for Boldin, the 49ers’ best receiver.
3. Dropped his hands and turned his body away from Boldin. Couldn’t throw to him even if he saw him.
4. Unprompted, announced the wrong coverage with confidence at his press conference and indicted himself. 
Yes, he indicted himself. It’s one thing to misread coverage – every quarterback does that, I’m sure. It’s another thing not to realize he misread the coverage more than 30 minutes after the game, after he’d had time to think it over, after he spoke to Boldin and offensive coordinator Greg Roman. Kaepernick still was in the dark.
I don't know all the technicalities of football. I don't know the vernacular. But I sports and I know field spacing and can read people. And I've been saying for two years now, Kaepernick doesn't know what's happening on the other side of the ball. He can't read the defense. He's constantly confused. He calls more timeouts and gets more delay of game penalties than I've ever seen. He audibles into plays that don't work. He locks into his first option and if he doesn't throw it there, he scrambles.

Alex Smith is a better quarterback. The Niners should have kept both Smith and Kap and never let the other team know who was playing when. They should of played them on different series. Smith should have been the starter and Kap comes in for a few series to confuse the defenses. No one has ever done this before. I'm not sure it would've worked, but it would've been damn interesting to see tried. If the Niners ever got a lead of 10 or more, just play Smith to manage the game.
Need To See Some More of These

"Best" movies of 2014.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014


Film: The Bling Ring

A perfect pairing with Spring Breakers and that's not a compliment.

Totally vapid and ultimately pointless.
Gimme A Break

I could see from the TV Kaepernick jawing with Chicago players after he tossed his 3rd INT. I know he said something inappropriate, but he's too dumb to just leave it be. He has to act like a thug and deny, deny, deny.
Calpers Divests From Hedgefunds

Are institutional investors waking up?

I wouldn't invest huge amounts with a fund unless they had some "skin the game."

Monday, September 15, 2014


How do you lose a game you're up 17-0?

a) No pass rush
b) Your quarterback fumbles and throws 3 interceptions

The things that bug me most about Kaepernick:

1. He's dumb. He changed a play call at the line of scrimmage yesterday into a power run right up the middle that got stuffed for a 3 yard loss. I think he misreads the defense. Alex Smith would audible and we'd get 4-5 yard runs every time because he could see a mismatch. Same with Peyton Manning.

2. He's dumb. He gets an immature frustration penalty after making a turnover. That's a penalty for an offensive lineman or a cornerback. Not a QB. You can't get rattled or emotional as a QB. You need to be cool.

3. He puts too much on his shoulders. You can just see the guy trying to do too much out there. I hate athletes who play like this. They think they need to be the hero at all times, when instead they just need to play their game. I believe this the Jordan-effect, since all these guys were raised to believe Jordan is the greatest athlete of all time and mimic his style of hero-ball.

4. He can only play one way. He doesn't adjust what he's trying to do based upon the game situation. This is forgivable, but only great players can do this. Russell Wilson arguably does this as well as any QB in the league and might be his greatest strength. But when you're up big, turnovers are especially costly because they are the only way the other team can get back into the game. A turnover when you're pressing to score because you are behind -- well - this happens and is the result of needing to press. Even Kaepernick's last INT wasn't that bad -- it was sort of a freak play and we were behind. It was the first three turnovers that were killer.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Liberal In Public, Conservative In Private

Tech elites expose their hypocrisy in their parenting styles.

Book: The Score by Richard Stark

Parker and his crew rob an entire small mining town. A few things go wrong.
Utterly Absurd

Obama sees 2002 Iraq resolution (the one he opposed, in case that wasn't obvious) as legal basis for airstrikes on ISIS.


"Adults should feel embarrassed about reading literature written for children."

The same goes for comic books, video games, and action figures. I actually think real adults ought to start becoming meaner about these things. Think about it. We live in a world where ISIS is taking over Iraq, Russia invades Ukraine, and most Americans don't have any job security or savings. We need adults. It's easier to be a child or a teenager, but it should also be shameful.
Jeff Sessions

Takes down Mark Zuckerberg on the Senate floor. Good for him. Good for us.

Facebook and Zuckerberg suck.

Friday, September 12, 2014

Fire Everyone!

The sports media is up in arms this week - demanding scalps from all over the place - Roger Goodell, the Atlanta Hawks owner, Danny Ferry, Ray McDonald, the list goes on...

I've got a solution: let's fire everyone who's ever had a "bad" thought or done a bad thing.

This is all about economic anxiety. The press and the public are nervous about their jobs and their future and it makes them feel better to moralize and threaten other people's jobs.

People want to talk seriously about issues like domestic abuse and racism, etc.? We have a system to deal with such things: it's called the law. If anyone thinks social media and the whims of the masses is the best way to enforce justice, they are fools and dangerous.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Don't Forget

On 9/11/01, many folks all around the Muslim world were celebrating. Not all, Muslims, of course. But an uncomfortably large number of them, if you ask me.

Monday, September 08, 2014

Cameras Ruining Baseball

The Atlantic argues the game is more boring than ever since introducing cameras to umpire the umpires.

To all these technological advances in monitoring games -- I say they all suck. Instant replay, cameras counting balls and strikes, the line measuring in tennis, the computer monitoring goal scoring in soccer. Screw them all.

We forget fundamentals: these are GAMES. They are supposed to be FUN! Not precise. They aren't legal arguments. I'd read Supreme Court opinions if I wanted precision and do calculus problems if I wanted everything to fit together elegantly. I want the messy, the stupid, the bad calls, the Billy Martins kicking dirt, the John McEnroes freaking out on the line judges, the Jeremy Giambi not sliding. For crissakes, these nerds are ruining the world one step at a time. One day, we'll just have computer simulations instead of sports leagues all together if the nerds get their wishes. Think I'm wrong? Try getting a copy of the original Star Wars. It doesn't exist. Why? Because George Lucas couldn't help but tinker with what was awesome and nerdify it up. Try reading a Bill Barnwell column on Grantland without falling asleep. This stuff isn't writing -- writing is David Halberstam giving insight into the personalities of players, coaches, trainers, the guys behind the scenes. This impulse for "perfection" is wrong and should be fought every step of the way.

Sunday, September 07, 2014

New Bev

Tarantino will only play films. I've been to the Egyptian twice where they screen a Blu Ray. It sucks. Viva film!

Saturday, September 06, 2014

The Movies Were Bad...

Hollywood had a horrid summer. If I owned a studio, I'd have zero troubling firing everybody and just hiring a bunch of enthusiastic movie lovers to shepherd a bunch of projects they loved to go into production in the fall. But that's just me.
Home Cooking

Slate says we should stop idealizing and this guy responds.

I've eaten a lot of meals -- many home cooked and many takeout. My observation is that for a larger group (ie family) it is more significantly more cost effective and healthier to make food. When living as an individual, the cost is only marginally more to purchase reasonable takeout and the effort required to cook a balanced meal for 1 is similar to cooking a balanced meal for 4. Thus, home cooking makes more sense the larger the family. Even with 2 people, home cooking is significantly cheaper and healthier and sort of fun, especially when you incorporate good wine and cocktails, which are outrageously overpriced when going out, (beer less so).

I like some of the points the guy makes about modern feminism:
It turns out that this argument has very little to do with women or feminism—or cooking, for that matter. Instead, it reveals a deeper premise of the left: a hatred of effort. 
It’s actually a diatribe against ideals, against striving, against ambition. This is a huge theme of feminism, the idea of being oppressed by “expectations” about all of the things you are supposed to do in life. Yet feminism is just being used as a mask for the real complaint. It’s a way of giving a respectable cover for something that sounds like insufferable whining if you say it on its own. 
The basic fact is that everything worthwhile requires work and effort. Getting a job, keeping a job, buying a home, maintaining a home, getting married and staying married, having kids. Everything.

Thursday, September 04, 2014


Somehow I missed this analysis of Kaepernick from last year.

It confirms my gut feeling that he was completely unprepared and the reason we lost to a Baltimore team we were superior to. Also explains why we stink at the goal line. I imagine a similar analysis of the Seahawk game would demonstrate "plays we left on the field."

Wednesday, September 03, 2014

NFL 2014

Although I'm not looking forward to more pass interference penalties, I'm glad the NFL officials are trying to do something about illegal holding in the secondary. I call this the Seattle Seahawks rule. Those guys hold on literally every single play (and take PEDs). It'll be interesting to see how it plays out tomorrow night against a generally pass happy team like the Packers.

I'm feeling real down on the Niners. Our defense has hit a breaking point with injuries and suspensions. Just way too many, although it looks like McDonald might be innocent. And so, for the Niners to be as good as last year, our offense must improve. Our receiving corps are improved over a year ago -- some even saying we have the best in the league. I'm optimistic about Carlos Hyde being a great 2nd option at tailback. But the big issue, to me, is still Kaepernick. I know pre-season means nothing, but he didn't lead a single touchdown drive during the whole thing. He's bad in the redzone, he can't read defenses, we needed to simplify the playbook for him, he has slow mechanics (if you ask me), he doesn't make progression reads, he telegraphs his passes, which is why a lot get batted down, and he takes an incredible number of delay of game penalties because he doesn't know the plays. And the read-option is defendable. It looked good when no one was prepared for it, but NFL defenses can easily stop the read-option, so it amounts to little more than one more run formation that can be occasionally useful.

I hope to be proven wrong, but this is the year where we should get a definitive understanding of Kaepernick as a quarterback. All these past two years, fans of his have been making excuses: he's only played a handful of games, he'll get better, his receivers suck, etc, etc. (ps - no one ever made any of these excuses for Alex Smith and they applied equally if not more). So now, all those excuses are gone AND the Niners will need to rely on the offense more. We'll see if he is up to the task.

On the flipside, I don't see why everyone is so down on Kansas City as a regression team. They almost beat the Colts in the playoffs after losing the best player of the field. Alex Smith played out of his mind - a far better game of QB than Kap has ever played. I guess they lost some guys on the o-line, but they were 11-5 despite a lot of injuries last year. I dunno.

Monday, September 01, 2014


Film: The Far Country

Strange...watching this film, I realized I had seen it before. But I don't remember when...

Not one of my favorite Stewart-Mann westerns, yet the visuals and setting were at times, stunning.

Another player's assessment.
"I don't think he's a factor if we're on our stuff. They run a bunch of phantom routes to get him free to run. You know you're digging to your last shell if you have to do all that. You can't do anything else but play backyard football. Really it's up to the D-Line and linebackers to contain him and make him be a passer, because really he's not a great quarterback when he is throwing the ball inside the pocket. When you're playing Kaepernick, you can read his shoulders and his eyes. He's average to me overall. He's a great athlete, so you just have to keep him from getting outside where he can make things happen. It's his legs. When he's able to get outside the pocket and create, it's hard to stop him."