Friday, November 28, 2014

Ambition Explosion

In China.
Why Oh Why?

Kaepernick vs. Wilson and how Kap consistently makes bad plays from the pocket.

I've watched the Niners all year, know they stink, and yet I still picked them to win yesterday. I can't believe my own stupidity. They looked terrible in their last three games, but found ways to win against lousy opponents. I knew they were playing a good team this week and yet, out-thought myself because I haven't been impressed with Seattle this year.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Student Mugged

Says he deserved it because of his privilege. 

Reminds me of the quote "A liberal is a man too broad-minded to take his own side in a quarrel.”

I also imagine his privilege isn't going to last very long. He will be desperate and poor in no time.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014


I guess I basically agree with this.

As to the various talking points:

1. Never met anyone who thought "black lives don't matter."

2. Are the people protesting the Ferguson incident the same people who celebrated the OJ verdict? I dunno why these voices are worth listening to...frankly, they seem delusional.

3. I remember talking about race as a kid in school and it seems like it has become a much more difficult subject to talk about. In fact, I'd argue it is almost impossible to have a discussion about race these days that isn't complete nonsense. Here is an example. Hat tip, Andy.

The writer suggests 12 things white people can do about Ferguson. I'm only half white, so I suppose I can do 6.

1. Learn about the racialized history of Ferguson and how it reflects the racialized history of America. 

Uhhh....okay...but I also have the autobiography of Ulysses S. Grant on my nightstand and I'd like to read that first. Along with a biographies on Christopher Columbus, Mao, and Stalin, so I'll get to the racial history of Ferguson after I finish, you know, actual important historical books I want to read.

2. Reject the “he was a good kid” narrative and lift up the “black lives matter” narrative. 

Is this a narrative or just a statement of the obvious. See above.

3. Use words that speak the truth about the disempowerment, oppression, disinvestment and racism that are rampant in our communities. 

Yes, Big Brother.

4. Understand the modern forms of race oppression and slavery and how they are intertwined with policing, the courts and the prison industrial complex. 

I didn't know sentence could make me fall asleep.

5. Examine the interplay between poverty and racial equity. 

Did it. Done.

6. Diversify your media. 

This should actually read: read what I read and agree with me, since it is impossible to actually BE diverse, otherwise you'd spend all day reading.

7. Adhere to the philosophy of nonviolence as you resist racism and oppression. 


8. Find support from fellow white allies. 

Sure...although allies is kind of a strange word since you know, we're not nation-states, nor at war.

9. If you are a person of faith, look to your scriptures or holy texts for guidance. 


10. Don’t be afraid to be unpopular. 

Enjoy it, actually.

11. Be proactive in your own community. 


12. Don’t give up. 

Too late, I have.

Saturday, November 22, 2014


Film: Interstellar

I think this might be my favorite Nolan film.
What Is Cinema?

Re-watched The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly last night. My favorite scene of the movie is above -- and it is a stark reminder of what cinema at the very essence. Cinema is not story. Cinema is not spectacle. Cinema is not entertainment. Fundamentally, Cinema is Movement. Characters, objects, and the camera moving through space is what separates cinema from the other forms which influence it, including music, stories, spectacle...
No Way To Handle It

There's a reason we have a judicial system -- because this court of public opinion is absurd. Maybe Cosby did all these horrible things - drugging and raping numerous vulnerable women. The number of women coming forward are hard to ignore. But is this the way to handle it? Public shaming about incidents happening 25-30 years ago? It strikes me as a terrible way to handle the situation both for Cosby, the victims, and the public at large. What I do not understand about these cases is how these victims don't come forward initially and demand justice. You see it over and over, but I cannot fathom being drugged and raped by someone and not going to the cops and saying: this mother-f-er drugged and raped me. I want him in jail. People will say he is powerful. Powerful? Who cares? And really, what power does he have? Money. Name me a single American who thinks because someone has money, they ought to get away with a crime. You will find none. This is our country, we rule it, and we make it what we want. And consider this as well -- the victims who didn't come forward and insist Cosby be brought to justice -- they bear at least some responsibility for the victims who came after them. So whatever shame and victimhood they feel, I think, is a poor excuse for shutting their mouthes when something could've been done about it instead of now coming forward in a gang wanting the lynch mob to publicly humiliate and take down the man.

Friday, November 21, 2014

I'll Just Cut and Paste the Whole Quote

From here.
“‘Social justice’ is an awkward term for an immensely important project, perhaps the most important project, which is to make the world a more equitable, fair, and compassionate place. But the project for social justice has been captured by an elite strata of post-collegiate, digitally-enabled children of privilege, who do not pursue that project as an end, but rather use it as a means with which to compete, socially and professionally, with each other. In that use, they value not speech or actions that actually result in a better world, but rather those that result in greater social reward, which in the digital world is obvious and explicit. That means that they prefer engagement that creates a) outrage and b) jokes, rather than engagement that leads to positive change. In this disregard for actual political success, they reveal their own privilege, as it’s only the privileged who could ever have so little regard for actual, material progress. As long as they are allowed to co-opt the movement for social justice for their own personal aggrandizement, the world will not improve, not for women, people of color, gay and transgender people, or the poor,” – Freddie DeBoer.
Ugly Chiefs Loss to the 0-10 Raiders

Plenty of blame to go around, so I'll start...

1. Game Plan and sticking with it the first half

The Chiefs ran basically the exact same plays they ran last week and the Raiders were ready for it. Charles Woodson in particular seemed to take delight in shadowing Jamaal Charles in the first half. The Raiders were denying the run and the screen passes. Why the Chiefs didn't see this right away and take some shots downfield is completely puzzling to me, especially the way the refs call PI now. I actually think the rain in some way benefits the offense because the slippery field is difficult to cut and react to pass routes.

In the second half, down 17-3, they finally opened it up and quickly scored 2 TDs. Why they didn't see this earlier is puzzling.

2. Parker

The Chiefs have one MAJOR liability: their cornerback Parker. Two weeks ago, he was the defensive player of the week and now, I basically think he deserves to get cut. He jumped about 3 times on balls, none of which he intercepted or broke up, resulting in long pass catches and the final TD. Horrible, horrible plays. And they were playing the Raiders. He was also getting beat against the Seahawks. These are terrible passing teams. Peyton Manning is going to eat him alive. A better corner and the Chiefs win that game. They don't do a PI on third and long. They don't give up huge pass plays to a crap team like the Raiders. He's given up PI 3rd and long first down plays two weeks in a row now. You simply cannot win like that.

3. Alex Smith cannot run the 2 minute drill

For a normally intelligent quarterback, Smith cannot for the life of him run the 2 minute drill. I've seen him with a tremendous number of opportunities over his career and he is simply not good at it. I'd even say bad. I thought earlier this year he did run it well against Denver and just couldn't get it in the end zone. Why don't these guys just go watch old Joe Montana footage? The drill is simple. You need to get yards on first down. The defense will give you easy throws. Make quick decisions before taking a shot downfield. Smith often throws incomplete passes on 1st down, tries to do too much, holds onto the ball too long. Use the running back, especially when you have Charles. Just do swing passes and pick up 8 or 9 yards and then get up quickly and run another play. You get these yards on first and don't worry about the clock yet because your enemy in the first half of the 2min drill is the downs -- and the enemy towards the end of the drill is the clock. Smith worries too much about the clock right away, I think, or maybe worries about the yards. Anyhow, he is bad and needs work on this.

4. Not Scoring That 4th Quarter TD

The Chiefs were at the Oakland 12 on first down tied 17-17. They needed to score a TD there, midway through the 4th quarter. They ran shitty plays and couldn't get it in, and scored a FG. That was the one time in the game they had momentum and they couldn't put them away.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

What Am I Even Doing?

I've seen shockingly few of these best of 2014 movies.
9/11 and Power

I'm coming around to the POV that America basically overreacted to 9/11.

I'd still like to point out, I don't agree with the liberal position against the Iraq war and that it was essentially about oil. I still believe it was about 9/11 and facing the threat of Islamic Terrorism as a region problem in the Middle East. And maybe there was someone out there talking about Islamic Terrorism smartly at the time, but I followed the debate closely, and don't remember it. Today, I feel like Al Queda essentially got lucky on 9/11 and it wasn't necessary for America to try and shake up the region to contain and combat the threat. But you gotta remember, we were scared and had every reason to believe -- and still should -- that Al Queda and like minded groups want to use WMDs against us. So, we made a mistake. But the thing about mistakes is that often you can't know they were mistakes until they were made...
Jamal Charles

A good piece on Charles. Since I can't stand how the Niners play, I've taken to watching the Chiefs and Alex Smith play the last couple years. So I've watched Charles play a lot. If you hear Charles speak, he does not come across as smart. In fact, he sounds outright dumb and borderline unintelligible at times. Which is strange because if you watch him play, he is one of the most intelligent running backs I've ever seen run.

This seems small, but he almost always knows when to go out of bounds and when to stay inbounds. So many players and coaches mismanage the clock in football games. How many times have you seen a player try to get four extra yards when there is under a minute to play and the team needs the valuable time and timeouts to get a final score? Or the opposite, when a guy goes out of bounds to avoid a hit when his team is running out the clock? Both happens all the time. I've noticed Charles always make the right decision.

Also, Charles does an incredible job with spacial awareness -- spotting holes that split second before everyone else and uses his speed to get through them. In contrast, watch a back like Trent Richardson run -- or even Knile Davis on the same team -- they almost never see the same holes Charles sees. For a smaller back, he goes between the tackles quite a bit, and effectively.

There was a run last week where Charles broke through into the secondary and then decided to move almost completely laterally. The move ended up doing nothing, because he got tackled, however it was an incredibly intelligent thing to do that you almost never see a running back do because he knew the space had run out and he tried to create more for himself by moving sideways. He is going to do something like that again and it'll end up being a touchdown.

Also, he doesn't not take punishing hits for a running back. Smart players know when they are going to take a hit and try and avoid it. This is probably the number one reason Charles, over other RBs his size and speed, is so successful.

Last week, Charles had a fumble, blamed himself on the play and immediately said, next time, I'm just going down. In contrast to a player like Kaepernick who lies and bumbles about the mistakes he makes during games (dumb penalties - he lies, misreading coverages - he says he'd do the same thing over again). To me, this is a sign of deep intelligence and understanding of the game, when you make a mistake, you b) immediately know it is a mistake and b) own up to it. Note: owning up to it is also a sign of character, but intelligence and character are not mutually exclusive and may even reinforce one another.

At any rate, the article talks a little bit about his learning disability, which explains somewhat how he comes across in interviews - slow. But if anything, I would say that reveals a bias in my estimation of a person's intellect, because it is obvious to me Charles is among the smarter offensive minds in the league. There is a reason he is the all time leader in yards per run at 5.5. At the end of his career, we might be making an argument for his as one of the best runners of all time.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

I Think This Is Rather Obvious

From Andrew Sullivan:
You can understand how we got here, of course. For far too long, girls and women were second-class citizens, marginalized, frustrated, punished, and denied the possibility of advancement. But a visit to any American college campus today will show how far we have come from those pernicious days. Instead, we are arguably at the beginning of a different crisis—a crisis of the American male. Until we find a way for men to chart a course that is not dependent on the subjugation of women and yet is unmistakably their own, that crisis will continue.
And Western feminists not only don't care about this issue, but are openly hostile and condescending to the notion. This is why their positions hold no weight on moral grounds and are better understood as attempts to gain power.

Film: The Fugitive

They don't make them like they used to. The wife and I rewatched this great film and she screams at the TV "that's a real train!" during the near-beginning action sequence. Ahhhh. Film. How low we have come that this is now a historical curiosity. I know making films is hard, but why can't Hollywood generate one film on par with The Fugitive each year. It seems reasonable, does it not? Just one. And it is not like this is some avant garde, dream-like request. This is just a simple action-chase film with good characters and people love it. Strange.

A thought on rewatching -- doesn't the bad guy plot actually make no sense whatsoever? Why the hell would the head cardiologist at a hospital decide to kill Richard Kimble? So the drug company could sell shitty drugs to doctors around the country? Does a head cardiologist really need extra money? And why did he try to kill Richard Kimble? Kimble hadn't even figured it out yet. I only bring this up because IT DOESN'T FUCKING MATTER. The great acting, the chases, the fun dialog, the cat and mouse, and Tommy Lee Jones all make it irrelevant.

A couple years ago, I rewatched and didn't care for the use of flashbacks. Now, I've lessoned my stance on such things...the filmmaking is a bit dated since the B&W, etc was copped by Law & Order, etc...but the film is all about tension. They milk tension in every single little section of the film and the flashbacks contribute to it. Two excellent, small moments in the film - Kimble at the hospital where a cop is looking for him. They introduce this random cop character looking for Kimble right after he's shaved and changed his clothes. They bump into each other in the hall and have a little exchange. They milk some excellent tension out a scene that in other movies, our hero just grabs clothes and cuts his beard. Another great tension builder is towards the end in the subway. Kimble is riding and he sees this greasy looking El Salvadorian guy reading a tabloid where his picture is on the back page. Kimble and we see the picture, the greasy El Salvadorian doesn't...yet...he flips the paper around casually and then looks over at Kimble and gets skittish. He leaves his seat to go find a cop, meanwhile, the one-armed man boards the subway (already set up that he is after Kimble). Chaos and fight ensue, but this added layer of tension creates a very gripping scene that in other movies just might amount to a dumb chase between 2 guys.

Musical: Kinky Boots

I enjoyed. I don't know why I like musicals so much. Perhaps because they seem so different from my interests and I know so little about how they are made and designed, I can just sit back in awe at the creativity and joyousness. The story was good, the musical numbers not as catchy as the best ones. I like to go to the big award winning ones about once a year.

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Chiefs and Niners

Niners get 5 ints from Eli Manning and manage 16 points. The Niners are winning because their defense is playing amazing, but their offense is anemic.

The Chiefs are straight up good.

Film: Inherent Vice

It seems Birdman has competition for worst film of the year. This is an incoherent, unfunny mess and the only question for me is whether auteur filmmakers are betraying the audience or whether the audience betray them by offering only unfettered praise for whatever they dish out, like undisciplined parents with insufferable children.

PTA is regressing as a filmmaker. Forget the mess of script, the direction isn't even good in this film. Just long scenes of characters talking in close up. The acting is serious and perhaps good, as are the costumes and makeup and some good Neil Young songs, but who really cares?

Friday, November 14, 2014

Weekly (Or Maybe Even Yearly) Highlight

My email got in Bill Simmons mailbag.
 Q: Since 2011 and the arrival of Jim Harbaugh in San Francisco, did you know Alex Smith is 33-15-1 as a starter in regular season games against the spread? That’s a .687 win percentage! By comparison, over the last three years, Manning is .601, Wilson .601, Brady .536., and Luck .675. How are you guys not all over this? —Greg Johnson 
 BS: And he always needed a nickname! Now he has one — The Coverer. Good Lord, did I do enough to jinx the Chiefs minus-2 yet? Let’s just move on.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Not That Kind of Sexual Predator

Brilliant article. Hat tip, Andy.

The best part:
My main beef with modern leftism isn’t even that it’s rooted in the stupid idea of equality but that it lives, breathes, and gains succor and strength through the most unabashed sort of hypocrisy I’ve ever seen, and I thought I’d seen ’em all. Modern feminists of the unforgivably overprivileged Jezebel ilk—the sort of white girls who hate being white yet loooooove being girls—twist their labia in knots over the sorts of trifling “microaggressions” and “shaming” behaviors which are so insubstantial that an electron microscope couldn’t detect them, yet their entire platform consists of attempting to lob nuclear shame-bombs at men. For all they wail about male “sexism”—and that’s ALL THEY FUCKING DO—nearly every word out of their yaps is a hate-dart aimed to degrade, humiliate, and demoralize men.
"The creatures outside looked from pig to man, and from man to pig, and from pig to man again; but already it was impossible to say which was which."

Is it just me or does Samantha Power sound exactly like Donald Rumsfeld?

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Kobe Breaks a Record

Most missed shots in NBA history. Sounds rights.

Film: The Hunter

On DVD, with Steve McQueen. Saw it because I just visited Chicago and there is a famous scene where a car drives out of a corn-cob looking building into the Chicago river. I feel like the director screwed up the shot by not getting it wider. Anyway, I miss jazzy scores and shooting with stars on real locations in films. Today, it would all be special effected up. The movie isn't great, but got me in the mood to re-watch Dirty Harry.

Film: Theory of Everything

First sequence was okay, but as a whole, a very lacking film. There was no science! I got zero sense of the most brilliant physicist on the planet actually does day to day. I got no sense of the challenges or frustrations with his work, of which, there must be many. He wasn't just born a genius. Instead, the movie is basically about a divorce, about as boring a subject as one could conjure, I imagine.

Film: Nightcrawler

Almost a really good film. Jake Gyllenhaal has found his calling: playing an emaciated sociopath. He was brilliant. His hands, eyes, and smile were overly large and freakish. He could fit into a circus. The red Challenger floating around Los Angeles at night like a shark. The violence of pointing the camera at people. So much potential. But...

...the music was awful. Distracting. Overly ironic. Cheap. The scenes that failed the movie were the long ones -- the two when the characters closest to Gyllenhaal realize he is a sociopath. Renee Russo would've walked out of the restaurant. His shooting partner, gotten out of the car and left. They weren't that desperate. They didn't really need him. Gyllenhaal was creepy, not seductive. He wasn't the devil, he was a serial killer. The writer couldn't get out of the scenes. The movie had to continue, so the characters stayed. But they were not driving the story. Later, the car chase at the end was a huge mistake if you ask me. It was beyond obvious. It is what a third rate producer would call for in a story meeting. They were making an 8 million dollar tiny-ass movie. The movie could've ended in the restaurant. Why blow their wad? Relative to their budget, this was like their train sequence in the Lone Ranger, the exploding bridge in River Kwai. But in those movies, we've built towards this cinematic extravaganzas. Here, it was nothing but a de rigueur chase. Everything that happens afterwards is unnecessary and repetitive. Meaningless. And this is why it is almost a good film.
Hate Crimes

On where the logic of "hate crimes" leads.

I don't see a hole in the justice system that "hate crimes" fill.

Keep your 2 cents and take your own advice! *hits whip dance* #IDontGetTired #WhoDoYouLove #Se7enPounds

A photo posted by colin kaepernick (@kaepernick7) on

Here is our franchise QB boasting after going 14-32 and not being able to generate any offense in the entire 2nd half except for a freak 51 yard down 4th and 10 breakdown play. The Saints gave us the last game. I can't stand watching this team.
I Believe Someone Wrote a Song About This

Jack Ma says being the richest man in the world makes him unhappy.

Saturday, November 08, 2014

Very Thoughtful And Probably Right

A new theory explains why neighboring countries invade one another: elites worry about the domestic attraction of the neighbors political institutions.

It certainly applies to Russia-Ukraine.

If this turns out to be right - and it makes complete sense - it explains why many of our Middle East policies fail -- or at least run into furious opposition and often incite wars.

The lesson is you probably should play to win or not get involved at all.

Friday, November 07, 2014

Thank You!

Sal Paolantonio goes on Cowherd and says the Niners made the wrong choice at QB with Kaepernick AND Kaepernick blew the Ravens Super Bowl.

He watches tape and he's right.

If feminism is all about choices, what about this research that women choose to pay themselves less than men for better life balance?

Suggests there may be other reasons for the gender pay gap than misogyny...
Pretty Bad

Obama wrote Khamenei himself for help battling ISIS in exchange for a nuclear deal.

Yikes. As a conceptual idea, this isn't terrible, but you do it through State Department proxies, not leader to leader with the Ayatollahs. Jeez, that's clumsy.

Thursday, November 06, 2014

Skip Bayless Speculates Correctly

Bayless thinks Harbaugh is gone next year because Harbaugh doesn't think Colin Kaepernick is the guy.

My position on Kaepernick is incredibly well documented here at Public Musings and if I am correct, it will be one of my best calls ever, since the entire sports world disagreed with me and the sports media continues to cover for Kaepernick. I swear every article I read about the Niners meltdown involves blaming Greg Roman, the offensive line, the coaching, the front office and not a single one takes the position that Kaepernick is the problem. Kaepernick is the problem!!! There is massive cognitive dissonance happening here -- Kaepernick gets better treatment in the sports media than Obama gets from the liberal media.

I would argue Kaepernick hasn't regressed at all. He hasn't changed much as a QB. He got incredibly lucky at the beginning of his career and had few spectacular games that were widely watched. This often happens when a new QB subs in for an old QB because the teams have not game planned for the new QB. (see Nick Foles, Michael Vick, Mark Sanchez right now, Josh McCown, Matt Flynn, all these guys were the toast of the town for a few weeks) Yes, Kap has a specific skill set -- he can throw deep down the field well and he can run. When he first came into the league, defenses were not prepared for the Niners to do either of those things. Some teams didn't have the personnel (Packers), others didn't have the scheme. But this was -- and remains -- a gimmick. Kaepernick was never good at reading defenses, making decisions, running through his progressions, or throwing anything but fastballs. His throws have no touch. And he is not a leader. His incompetence is rubbing off on teammates. His erratic decision making makes it difficult for others to get in synch with him. Crabtree, Boldin, Davis, Gore are all having WORSE seasons than in previous years. The only receiver doing okay this year is Stevie Johnson -- a new receiver. That is strange. Good players develop chemistry over time. The Niners are developing the opposite of chemistry -- Kap is the cancer spreading to the rest of the team and the poor playing is exposing the problems between the front office and Harbaugh.

Meanwhile, look at what Alex Smith is doing over in Kansas City. KC shit the bed in the first game, played the most difficult schedule in the league over 8 games, and is 5-3 with a plus 62 point differential (4th best in the league). They have worse personnel at every single offensive position than the 49ers except Jamal Charles (no little thing), and yet, are playing better right now. Their run game is solid - even without Charles - and after losing 3 offensive lineman in the off-season. Why? Because Alex Smith knows how to get his offense into advantageous positions to run whereas Kaepernick does not. This is a process of outthinking the opponent. Peyton does it the best, which is why, despite being slow and uncoordinated, he never takes sacks.

Anyhow - the Niners will continue to regress with Kap at quarterback. It is a very safe bet.

UPDATE: An example of the media bias in favor of Kap -- just saw this article talking about Kap's historic season. The Niners are playing like shit and they're talking about Kap's impressive stats. Ugh.

Tuesday, November 04, 2014

Right Wing Conspiracy

Lena Dunham accuses Right Wing nutjobs of...quoting her?

Some feminist makes an interesting point:
Like Caitlin Moran, Lena Dunham exists in that vapid and overly-self-conscious niche of mainstream feminism where the overwhelming concern is white women, their problems, their lives, and much talk and examination of the size and shape of and feelings about their bodies. It’s all very surface-level feminism. Lots of talk about accepting your body and being able to have the kind of sex you want, not much about the lives and experiences of anybody outside their demographic, accompanied by the assumption that of COURSE we must all be interested. It’s light, it’s easily digestible. And when we are in that nook, that warm little wrinkle of surface-level feminism that focuses on the “me me me”, it can become escapism. Liberating on an individual level, for sure, empowering even, but ultimately it’s for the individual and not for the collective. And so what do white feminists repeatedly do when their go-to feminists of the comfortable escapism variety mess up? We keep ignoring it, letting it go, moving on, chalking it up to a misunderstanding.
I find it hard to distinguish between feminism and complaining.

Monday, November 03, 2014

She Trafficks In This

Lena Dunham upset over accusations she molested her sister, which she writes about in her book.
Dunham writes of casually masturbating while in bed next to her younger sister, of bribing her with “three pieces of candy if I could kiss her on the lips for five seconds . . . anything a sexual predator might do to woo a small suburban girl I was trying.” At one point, when her sister is a toddler, Lena Dunham pries open her vagina — “my curiosity got the best of me,” she offers, as though that were an explanation. “This was within the spectrum of things I did.”
Little kids do weird things. But what's not cool is the adult gleefully sharing this stuff to sell books. Then again, this is what Dunham does. She over-shares, solicits outrage, disgust, and any sort of emotion she can wrangle in order to make the discussion about her.

What I don't like about her and her fans is that she is a child of privilege who plays the victim. Strike that. What I don't like about her is that she plays the victim.

Sunday, November 02, 2014


Kaepernick on his fumble to end the game today:
"I know I crossed the line. I was looking into the end zone," Kaepernick said.
No. You lead your supposedly "explosive" offense to 10 points against a sad sack 2-5 team. The problem is Kaepernick. We have weapons everywhere.
The Chiefs and Football

Just saw DeAnthony Thomas return a kick off about 70 yards. I don't see why Thomas and players like him are not more valued in the NFL. The guy was a 4th round draft choice, but every game he plays, he makes at least one big play. Percy Harvin, DeAnthony Thomas, Sproles -- these type of guys are rare-- not every team has one -- and yet, teams regularly let them go, draft them in the late rounds, or, in the case of Harvin, trade for a 6th round pick. As far as I can tell, these guys are amongst the most valuable on the field.

One of my favorite cities in America, although I've never lived there through a winter. Very decent, intelligent people. Spectacular architecture. Great food. The entire place seems sensible compared to Los Angeles -- the city exits because of the river and the gigantic water supply of Lake Michigan. The streets make sense. The buildings make sense. The transportation make sense. Look beyond the beaches and Los Angeles is a strange, not entirely logical, place. One could more accurately consider Los Angeles more a series of villages than a city at all.

Film: Guardians of the Galaxy

Watched on the plane. Probably the best Marvel film, which isn't saying much. All the usual idiocy of chasing orbs and nerd crap, but the heart and humor won me over in a few parts. I appreciated the filmmakers generally not taking the whole thing too seriously. All that said, I'm sure a week from now, I'll forget I even saw the movie.