Friday, October 31, 2014

10 Thoughts for October 30, 2014

  1. Gender: Tim Cook came out of the closet.  Even in this day and age where politicians, music and video stars are all openly living their lives, it still isn't easy for people to come out, in part because older folks and many religions still harbor sentiments against such folks.
  2. Gender: In keeping with this theme, I find it disgusting that Russians find it acceptable to beat gay men and women.  I find it disgusting that these human rights violations, supported by their respective governments, have been overlooked by members of the IOC and FIFA, allowing Russia to host both the Olympics and the 2018 World Cup.  You may be against gay people, but that does not give you a right to beat gay people up.  Governments who do not crack down on these human rights violations are no better than these violent people.
  3. Football: I am still laughing at the sports media, believing that the Jets need a new quarterback.  As I wrote before, the Jets have an o-line problem, first and foremost.  Three of the last four seasons (2011 - 2014) the Jets have ranked 27th out of 32 teams in sacks allowed per game.  That's the bottom line, you dolts.
  4. Football: Ryan Abraham used ESPN Stats to calculate the odds of losing to both ASU and Utah -- 0.6%.  I think they should run the odds of losing a game by going to a prevent defense.  When Sark said that the team lacked a killer instinct, I had to laugh, because going prevent defense hardly instills a killer mindset.  It reflects zero confidence in the secondary, and you're just hoping and praying that the secondary won't give up the touchdown.  Truthfully, USC is just two missed field goals away from a 3 - 5 record.
  5. Football: Everyone seems confident that USC will beat WSU, given the gap in talent between the two.  IDK, man.  The only teams USC has overwhelmed are Fresno State, Colorado and Oregon State, and none of these teams have won games against teams with at least average talent.  Meanwhile WSU has pulled the upset against Utah and was very close to pulling it off against Oregon.  If USC loses, the whole season might be in jeopardy, frankly, as the psychological scar of losing to WSU might be too much to bear.
  6. GamerGate: This is the last time I'll ever speak about this issue.  Pro-GamerGate people insist that the issue is about journalistic ethics, which is absurd because the mantle they've taken up, is not unique to the gaming industry.  Every tech and political story you've ever read, is partially informed by biased sources or inherently slanted by the journalist's own feelings on the matter.  If GamerGate folks want to stand apart from the doxing and the threats of violence against women, then stand apart from the doxing and the threats of violence against women by directly addressing these individuals on Twitter.  As far as I can tell, these voices who believe that GamerGate is about journalistic ethics, are full of chicken shit.  And those who dox and make anonymous threats through the internet are no less chicken shit themselves, incapable of being on the front line of the threats they hurl.  
  7. Technology: If you haven't heard by now, Sprint is going to turn off Clearwire's WiMax network, next November, as in 2015.  This is good news for me, in that Sprint had previously hinted that it would turn off the network throughout 2014 as it finished updating equipment in each market.  At least now we know that there's a bit more time ahead, and between now and then, there will be more competition to lower prices for high speed internet.
  8. Technology: I just ordered a Google Wallet Card.  I've decided that I'm going to stop using my debit card and start using my Wallet and Wallet Card.  The reason is, the Wallet Card is a layer that separates my banking account from my transactions, plus, because my Google account utilizes two-factor authentication, no one else can access my account, which is far better than the combination of password and secondary questions used by my bank -- or any other bank for that matter.  Plus, Google just announced automated features for depositing money into your Wallet Card.  Here's a quick rundown of the fees (hint, you probably will never encounter them.)
  9. Technology: Did I mention this?  I finally got a password manager, SafeInCloud.  The deal is, you pay for the app, but the desktop app (Windows / Mac) is free.  Sadly for iOS users, it costs $2 more than the Android app.  I had to use up my balance of Play Store credit, so I figured why not.
  10. Politics: A wave of new polls in the Merkley - Wehby race definitively show Merkley coasting.  The Wehby team actually declined to comment on the newest poll numbers, but then again, who can blame them?  

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

10 Thoughts for October 28, 2014

  1. Football: Apparently the NCAA is so scared about what actually happened behind their USC / Reggie Bush / Todd McNair investigation, that they might settle with Todd McNair to keep their files out of the public.  If you care to learn about just how corrupt the NCAA's COI was at the time of that investigation, you absolutely must read and follow USCFootball's Dan Weber.
  2. Football: The Jets are in complete disarray.  So much so, that I decided to track the origins of their *current* downfall.  Rich Kotite was worse, but the Jets organization today resembles a Korean drama.
  3. Politics / Economics: The Sam Brownback Tea Party Libertarian Capitalist test in Kansas has failed (and so has Walker's Wisconsin and Kasich's Ohio), but you wouldn't know it, because Republicans around the country are using the same theories to push for smaller government and lower taxes, in the midterm race.  If there ever could be a better narrative to use against Republicans, Kansas would be it.  But national Democrats seem deaf and blind to it.
  4. Politics: Which brings me to the curious need of Sam Brownback's campaign to borrow money, repeatedly, from his lieutenant governor.  These local races have no restrictions in funding, so the "cash flow" excuse offered by Brownback's campaign rings hollow.  But let's say that it is a "cash flow" problem, then you have to wonder about the governor's ability to manage the state's finances.  Aha!
  5. Politics: It's absolutely untrue, that Republicans hate wasting money.  What they hate, is not being the ones who get to direct how money is wasted.  Take for instance Kansas.  SoS Kris Kobach continues to defend wasting $35,000 on litigation that he lost, to force a Democrat to stay on the ballot, despite his request to be left off it.  $35,000 for a purely partisan play, and paid for by Kansas taxpayers.
  6. Politics: If Democrats end up winning and controlling the Senate next week, do not be shocked.  I will explain more on this, if they in fact keep the Senate by losing just a couple of seats.  You see, I find it amusing that Republicans are already gloating about their predicted win of the Senate, and I'd love nothing more than to take these people down a few notches.
  7. Technology: It seems that Android Lollipop's camera software supports shooting RAW, so that one can save files in Adobe's DNG format (with the right app), instead of being stuck with JPG.  If you use Photoshop, then you know what the benefits are.
  8. Global: So, it seems that ISIS is starting to lose the war, but the media hasn't bothered to cover it.  They're stuck on whether or not Kobane is in ISIS' control, which, typical of the media, fails to view the rest of battles around Iraq.
  9. Space: The video making the rounds everywhere, is the failed launch of Orbital Sciences' Antares unmanned rocket, at NASA, in a bid to deliver supplies and experiments to the ISS.  ORB stock is down 15% after hours.  If SpaceX were public, I'm sure their stock would have skyrocketed.
  10. Police: I had to laugh, to think that police anywhere in the US actually believed that their use of excessive force was protected by the US Constitution.  And yet in Seattle, 125 police officers filed a lawsuit making such claims.  Talk about absurdities.

Why the Jets are screwed up.

The Jets are in complete disarray, it seems.  When Rex Ryan arrived in 2009, they did everything right to build upon what was already there.  But starting in 2011, everything seemed to go from bad to worse.

As it turns out, the Jets' current situation is the culmination of a series of errors that first began in the summer of 2011.  And it was entirely predictable that they would end up in the cellar this year.
  • July 2011 -- Jets brought in Plaxico Burress for a 1-year deal, on the theory that he was the needed offensive weapon to help Mark Sanchez out.  My belief is, you never hire someone so stupid as to shoot themself in the leg; accidents with guns don't happen to people who take great care of the details.  On the field this translated to 45 receptions out of 97 targets.  If you watched him play, he gave up on routes.
  • January 2012 -- Offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer took the brunt of the blame for a bad season, and left, following disputes with receivers who wanted more passing in the game (think Burress).  He was close to Mark Sanchez, mentoring him along the way -- some people forget that Sanchez left after starting just one year at USC -- which would portend a decline in Sanchez's performance without an equal mentor.
  • January 2012 -- Upon Schottenheimer's departure, the Jets managed to come up with the unbelievably dumb idea of bringing in Tony Sparano as OC, who had been fired a month earlier (during the season no less) as head coach of Miami.  Now, think about it: the Jets, who finished 2nd place in their division, hired the fired HC from the team that finished behind them in their division -- I ask you, is that not stupid?  Well, he flopped as he brought the offense down even further, ranked 30 out of 32 teams for the 2012 season, and was fired.
  • March 2012 -- Mark Sanchez and the Jets signed a 3-year deal with guaranteed $20M for 2012 and 2013 -- an increase of about $2.5M a year.  Did he deserve it?  Well, the issue here is whether or not they thought he was their future.  They apparently didn't know what to do with Mark, so what they actually did was restructure his contract with that extra $2.5M a year, so that they could opt out in year 3, and that's exactly what they ended up doing.
  • March 2012 -- To bolster the offense (as they described it), the Jets traded two 2012 draft picks for Tim Tebow.  This, coming right on the heels of that restructured deal with Sanchez giving him more money for 2012 and 2013.  Remarkably, he only threw 8 times and ran 32 times, and then he was cut the following spring.  This stunt cost them money in 2013, because they were still paying his salary even though he was cut. 
  • April 2013 -- The Jets trade away their best defensive player, Darrelle Revis.  With Revis, the Jets had one of the best passing defenses; without Revis they're absolutely mediocre.
  • April 2013 -- With additional brilliance in tactical thinking, the Jets drafted Geno Smith in the 2nd round, a dual-threat quarterback, in what was generally seen as a weak pool of quarterbacks.  Was he, as they explained, there to push Sanchez, or was he their hope for a franchise player to replace Sanchez?  Imagine if they had picked Eddie Lacy, instead.  In the end, they picked a guy whose negative PFW scouting report seems to have come to fruition both off and on the field.
  • August 2013 -- Late in the 4th quarter in an inconsequential third preseason game against the NY Giants, the Jets braintrust sent their likely starting quarterback -- Mark Sanchez -- into the game behind a third-string line (guys who'd either end up cut or signed to the practice squad), following Geno Smith's 3rd inteception.  He got hit, and as a result, suffered a season-ending injury.  A little stunt to try to light a fire under Mark Sanchez, backfired and cost them $20M to pay a player who would not play the entire season.
  • March 2014 -- After dragging their feet on releasing Mark Sanchez, and thereby devaluing his negotiating position with other teams, the Jets promptly signed an aging Michael Vick.  If they thought that he was a proper mentor for Geno Smith, they were fooling themselves.  In the first game where Ryan sent Vick in to replace Smith, Vick bombed, then later admitted to not being prepared for the game.  In the second game (against Buffalo) where he was sent in, he matched Smith's 3 turnovers.  I haven't seen anyone say that Geno Smith has progressed this year; everyone seems to agree that he has digressed from last year. 
Instead of shoring up their offensive weapons, the Jets have been content with finding players who've been cut by other teams.  And when they did pick a receiver high in a draft, they totally flubbed it.  In the 2012 draft, they took Stephen Hill over obviously better players such as Alshon Jeffery, Reuben Randle and T.Y. Hilton.  Oops!

And for the guy they initially talked about as being a franchise player, they did no favors for Geno Smith, either.  This past year they drafted three wide receivers, but chose poorly.  4th round Jalen Saunders was gone by the end of September, now signed on the practice team for the Arizona Cardinals; fellow 4th rounder Shaq Evans was placed on IR before the season even got started, meaning that he was gone for the season; 6th round pick, Quincy Enunwa got placed on the practice squad coincidentally after he was arrested for assault in a domestic abuse case that was dropped two weeks ago.

Then there's the problem of the offensive line.

In the Rex Ryan years, the Jets have made 7 offensive line picks in drafts.  Of those, just two of them remain on their active roster.  Their highest o-line pick was in the second round: Vladimir Ducasse.  Well, everyone who's a Jets fan knows how bad he turned out to be.  Matt Slauson took a pay cut to stay with the Jets and got rewarded by having to split time with this guy. Imagine if they had picked Shawn Lauvao instead.

To highlight this issue about o-line quality, all we need to do is look at the quarterback sacks they've given up.  I know, people believe that Sanchez was terrible, but the records speak otherwise.

In 2008, when Brett Favre played QB for the Jets, they allowed just 1.875 sacks per game.  The best offensive output of the Jets under Sanchez came in 2010, when they only allowed 1.6875 sacks per game.

The following year when the Jets began their decline, the o-line gave up 2.4375 sacks per game.  This year, through 8 games they've given up 2.75 sacks per game.  Do you see the trend here?  Give up a lot of sacks and your quarterback will look bad.  Give up fewer sacks and your quarterback will look good.

YearQuarterbackGamesSacksSacks / Game
2014Smith / Vick8222.75
2013Smith16432.6875
2012Sanchez / McElroy16452.8125
2011Sanchez16392.4375
2010Sanchez16271.6875
2009Sanchez / Clemens16301.875
2008Favre16301.875

By the way, in 2012, McElroy started one game over Mark Sanchez, and got sacked 11 times (one short of tying the NFL record for sacks in a single game).

One final example of how little concern Rex Ryan and the Jets braintrust has had for their offense: Under Ryan, the Jets have had 7 1st-round picks, and of the 7, only one was an offensive player -- Mark Sanchez.

You know what makes that 6 out of 7 1st round picks going to defensive players look bad?  Having your defense ranked 30th out of 32 teams on scoring defense despite collecting so many 1st rounders -- ouch!

People love to make fun of Mark Sanchez, but he brought them twice to the AFC championship -- a feat the Jets last accomplished under the play of the great Joe Namath, dating back to 1969.  In the years that followed, the Jets never had back-to-back appearances in the AFC championship.

And so here we are in 2014, and the Jets are in shambles.  They tried to undermine Sanchez with Geno Smith, hoping that Smith would beat out Sanchez during the 2013 preseason, only to have it backfire on them, so they own 100% of what's going on in 2014.

Monday, October 27, 2014

10 Thoughts for October 26, 2014

  1. Football: Did you happen to watch the end of the Philadelphia - Arizona game on Sunday?  In the final 3 minutes of the game, one team went almost exclusively into prevent defense while the other went the opposite direction and mostly rushed 5 and 6 players to pressure the quarterback, including the final play with 1 second left.  Guess who lost.  Yes, the team that went prevent defense lost.  And that's why USC keeps losing.
  2. Football: Sticking with the Arizona Cardinals, I still remember the pundits who'd said (ESPN anyone?) that Carson Palmer was a mediocre quarterback who could help mentor the young quarterbacks expected to take over the program.  Ha.
  3. Football: All those pundits (ESPN anyone?) who said that Geno Smith was improving at the end of last year and would take the Jets to the playoffs this year, look really dumb now.  Three interceptions thrown in 10 minutes of the game against Buffalo and he was yanked.  The Jets at 1 - 7, are not yet eliminated from making the playoffs, though.  LOL.
  4. Football / Science: When I was in middle school, I really wanted to play football.  My mother declined, stating that, in order to have a life after football you'd need to have a brain intact.  That was 32 years ago.  How prescient, seeing as today, we now know just how much damage many football players have done to their brains, even those who did not make it to the pros.  I love to watch the game, but I also hate seeing when those players walk off the field wobbly, aware that their future is cloudy at best.  This tough and uneasy cognitive dissonance over concussions sits with me every season -- knowing that the cognitive dissonance exists, does not relieve it, of course, but instead, I accept life as messy and that I'm stuck with my dissonances.
  5. Science: The Sun has produced a lot of X-class and M-class flares in the last seven days.  At one stretch, there was one X-class flare a day for three days.  Right now there are a couple of M-class flares.  Not much of a light show, though, because the region of these flares is not pointed towards Earth.
  6. TV: Last week, I walked past Grimm's David Giuntoli at the Pearl Safeway while I was there to grab a bottle of Chloraseptic for my sore throat.  Yeah, he's not 5'-11", and I'll just leave it at that.  Watched the season opener, and love the fact that they keep using Fuller's -- a blue collar coffee shop, that is a link to the Pearl District's true past.  You know, they never really resolved the zombie thing in Nick, from last year.
  7. Furniture: Did you notice the new additions to IKEA's online catalog?  The Bekant series is almost exactly like the Galant series desks and legs, with one big exception: The Bekant includes bases with powered adjustable heights.  They're not cheap, but they're still much cheaper than what you would normally pay for powered adjustable height desks.  Only problem: Just three stores in the US have them in stock.  I can imagine though, that a lot of people will want to buy the bases and have their own table tops built and attached.
  8. Software: The other week, my Google Play Store credit was about to run out, so I finally decided to go ahead and get the SketchUp Viewer app for Android.  The name is misleading really, because you can't view SU models saved in your Android device, but rather, you have to upload them to your SU account, and if you don't want anyone else to see and download them, you have to place them into a private collection.  I'm a little bitter that, after having paid my $95 annual maintenance fee for SU Pro, they ask me to pay $10.  The reviews from users in both iTunes and Android are very low, including my own.  For $10, all of us expected a lot more than just a simple viewer that is less useful than when you access the same content via desktop web browsers.  I mean, you know, I still have faith in the team that they'll keep improving and adding features to this, to make the $10 worth it, or otherwise turn it into a free app and refund everyone who paid for it, but right now it's a crappy app.
  9. Software: One really awesome, free app that I would have paid money for, is Wacom's Bamboo Paper.  If you have a tablet and a stylus, it's a simple app to draw sketches with.  Its limitations are what makes this the perfect sketching tool -- if you carry around a sketch pad, you don't usually lug a full set of color pens, pencils, etc, but rather, you carry a small set of most-used colors and tools.  It's not meant to be a Photoshop app for tablets, but a sketching app, as in sketching ideas or capturing the spirit of a scene in front of you.  It does not have layers; instead, you layer things as in the real world when you're sketching with paper and pen / pencil.
  10. Weather: It's funny how fall hits Portland.  A strong storm or two will come at some point in October, and thereafter the daily high temperature will not break 70, and instead steadily decline.  I think we just hit that point last Wednesday when it nearly poured 2" in a day, followed by Saturday's wind storm that knocked out power for a lot of people (not me!).

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Why USC lost to Utah.

Why did USC lose to Utah?  Here's a list of errors, by order of when they occurred in the game, with the points involved:
  • In the 1st quarter, on the second play of the game, Darreus Rogers didn't secure the wide open lateral pass, and it bounced forward onto the ground. No one on the USC offense noticed that the pass was a lateral or that the refs did not whistle the play dead.  Utah defense casually picked up the live ball and ran it in for a touchdown.  What aggravated this, is that it was yet another backfield pass / bubble screen play, in what seemed to be a very long list of such plays over the season, that have ended up being negatives for the offense.  If you want your running game to work, don't you want to throw down the field to keep the safeties back?  And you can't single out Rogers, because there were 10 other USC players on the field who stood around and did nothing.  Points at stake: -7.
  • In the 3rd quarter, though they corrected their error, the infamous PAC-12 refs got a fumble call wrong in the end zone, ultimately preventing Adoree Jackson from returning the ball 100 yards for a touchdown -- which would have been remarkable seeing as he returned a kickoff 100 yards for a touchdown in the 2nd quarter.  This freshman class is spectacular -- too bad the team keeps coming up short in the win column.  Points at stake: +7.
  • In the 3rd quarter, on that drive immediately following that fumble recovery that was screwed up by the officials, Kessler delivered a late (backside) and high ball to Agholor, who one-handed tipped it up, and right into the defender behind him.  That turnover gave Utah the ball at USC's 38 yard line, who eventually scored a touchdown, four plays later.  This was a double-whammy because not only did Adoree Jackson and USC lose out on a touchdown, the consequential offensive series gave Utah the ball right back and allowed them to score.  Points at stake: -7.
  • In the 4th quarter, Sark chose to go for the first down instead of kicking a 45 yard field goal that would have put USC up by a touchdown -- the same touchdown margin that would have sent this game into overtime when Utah scored.  They were facing the wind, so perhaps the field goal would not have been successful.  On the prior 3rd and 2 play, it was actually a brilliant set up in what looked like a short-yardage set, with the fullback sneaking out for a wide open catch, except Kessler delivered a dead duck 5 yards short.  Then, when going for it on 4th and 2, Kessler delivers the ball to Agholor who seems to reach the first down near the sideline, but actually stepped out short of the first down.  Mental errors from your best players at critical times, is tough to overcome.   Points at stake: +3.
  • But the worst error of them all, in the 4th quarter, the infamous PAC-12 refs did not call the pick play by the Utes in the end zone (exactly like the one ND did against FSU last week).  If the refs had called the foul, it would have placed the ball roughly on the 15 yard line (foul was in the end zone + 15 yard penalty) with just 8 seconds left, which would have eliminated any running plays.  Not to belabor the issue here, but how can it be that the refs are paying close attention to Kevon Seymour's aggressive cornerback style, but completely miss the full-on pick block play just yards away from the winning score?  Points at stake: -7.
Instead of a 21 - 24 loss to Utah, it could have very well been a 31 - 3 win for USC, though the point here is that, despite all the anger and dejection the Trojans are experiencing right now, it came down to eliminating just one error.

However, we still have the issue of Justin Wilcox's prevent defense.

It was a classic setup for failure, you see, because the defense had done remarkably well, responsible for just 10 points by Utah's offense.  They'd gotten into Utah's backfield 7 times for 2 sacks and 5 tackles for loss.  Yeah, I saw that they wasted a time out on defense because the call came in late and they weren't on the same page, yet again.  But, Wilcox's defense has improved and looked like they were well prepared for this game.  Take away the final series and the defense was absolutely solid.

Had Arizona's field goal kicker made that last second field goal, USC would be an absolutely mediocre 4 - 4, with Wilcox's prevent defense involved in three of those four losses.  Let that be an indictment against the prevent defense, or maybe it'll be known as Justin's Curse?

Saturday, October 25, 2014

10 Thoughts for October 25, 2014

  1. Politics: Joni Ernst supports English as the official language of the US, to which I wonder what native Americans and first nations think about that idea.  You have to wonder about Republicans who claim that the GOP is an inclusive party, but then push policies that antagonize others.
  2. Politics: SurveyUSA issued one more poll earlier this week in the Merkley - Wehby race, and it's just more bad news for Wehby, as each successive poll showed Merkley gaining a point on Wehby, now at a 21 point margin.  The same can be said for the governor's race between Richardson and Kitzhaber, as Kitzhaber now enjoys the same 13 point lead that he'd had four months ago.
  3. Politics: Monica Wehby's campaign is terrible.  I could easily take down every false causation assertion she's made in her latest ad, but there is no point because she's lost all support from outside groups.  She's trying to save money by airing 15-second spots, as well, which is probably an indication that donations have slowed dramatically.
  4. Politics: I am surprised that Mark Udall is having a tough race with Cory Gardner.  If Gardner wins, Net Neutrality will be dead and so will the privacy of Americans.  You see, Udall has been on the forefront in opposition of the NSA spying and CISPA, and also on the front lines of supporting Net Neutrality, whereas Gardner is exactly the opposite, having voted in support for CISPA and anti-Net Neutrality bills in the House.
  5. Politics: Washington Week covered the point that Wall Street is up 22% while unemployment is down 25% since Obama first took office, and that ironically, the dissatisfaction with Congress' inability to compromise and move forward, will result with a majority Republican Congress that does not compromise.  Yah, nothing new here, but the media's all stuck on the false narratives, telling people why they should be upset about the direction of the country.
  6. Technology: These past few months I have come to realize that my needs are not aligned with the newest technology out there.  When the Nexus 6, 9 and the iPad Air 2 came out, I didn't get all that worked up.  Yeah, they're gorgeous, but I didn't feel a single ounce of envy.  I really like my phone's 5" screen, I really enjoy the 7" tablet's pogo charging and screen size, and next up is a 12" tablet for me, because it's roughly the dimensions of a letter-size / A4 sheet of paper.  That matters to me because it's naturally easier to sketch on that size than on a 9" screen.  Also, it's ideal for showing renderings of projects.
  7. Health: It's becoming clear that the difference in survival of Ebola, is almost certainly determined by wealth, which dictates access to quality treatment.  While Eric Duncan's case was botched by Dallas Presbyterian, all other infected Americans treated in the US have beaten Ebola.  In western Africa, they're overwhelmed and do not have the sort of equipment and ability to treat all of the sick patients, effectively.  You can therefore understand why their people distrust these Ebola treatment centers.
  8. College Football: USC had a total mental meltdown, again, but this time it started from the first second play of the game. But yet again, they screwed up in the final minutes of the game.  How banal this narrative has become: USC can't finish games.
  9. College Football: That UNC academic scandal was turned into a mockery of the process of investigation, when UNC's Chancellor, Carol Folt, came out to explain that the investigation showed that it was just a handful of bad apples.  You see, Carol Folt knocked down a whistleblower's allegations of academic impropriety just five months ago on this very issue of paper classes.  That makes her hypocritical and purely politically driven to keep her own ass out of the hot seat.
  10. College Football: You often hear about trying to maintain offensive "balance".  I think most folks just get it wrong in application, though.  Balance is achieved by distributing talent across the offensive skill positions, such that every player is a threat.  That way, whatever the defense gives you, you exploit.  If you try to force balance, all you're doing is working right into the defense's game plan.

Friday, October 24, 2014

Over a week without posting -- here's the summary

Friday, October 17: Damn, all this sneezing and chills with a slight pain over my whole body makes me think I might either have caught the flu or a rhinovirus.  Shutting down everything and sheltering in bed.

Saturday, October 18: Still sneezing, getting congested, still with passing chills and slight pain, but the pain is taken care of with just a couple of ibuprofen, so it doesn't seem like it's the flu.  Watched USC rip Colorado, yay!

Sunday, October 19: Watched the Seahawks lose -- I had a feeling this might happen, actually.  They have greater difficulty winning on the road in division games.  Cold has gotten better and not so congested.  Took a normal walk outside and felt good.  Definitely not influenza -- whew!  Must make a reminder to get my flu shot this year, because Google Trends shows an early season spike.

Monday, October 20: Ugh, here comes the dreaded cough and phlegm.  Frozen in time, not doing anything.  Just a couple of days, though.  Hopefully.

Tuesday, October 21: Throat is getting more sore and more phlegm is coming out -- this is not supposed to happen.  Uh oh.  Now, doing less than nothing and just lying around and trying to catch some sleep between coughing fits.

Wednesday, October 22: Dammit, this must be an URI (upper respiratory infection).  Throat extremely sore, even when not coughing!  Bought Chloraseptic spray with Phenol -- an analgesic to soothe the pain.  It works, but wow, I can't swallow without pain.  Might need to go see the doctor to get some cough syrup with codeine.

Thursday, October 23: Ugh, still phlegm like nuts, coughing fits like crazy, that I can't even sleep.  Or maybe it's the phenylphedrine that is keeping me up, as well?  Someone set the building's fire alarm off, which meant that I had to go outside in the cold, with my sore throat, barely able to speak at this point.  This is crazy.  At night, I thought it might have gotten a little better, though.  Still, had to decline my participation in tomorrow's Q-A tour at the radio station project.

Friday, October 24: Forget it, I'm going to the doctor.  I don't want to risk having to go to Urgent Care over the weekend.  Will definitely need antibiotics at this point, as the phlegm is not showing signs of receding and throat is really sore.  Great, now I just got a nose bleed from the phenlyphedrine and the AC in the car (phenylphedrine: half the efficacy of pseudophedrine, but the same side effects).  Calgon take me away.

And so you know what I haven't posted in over a week.  When I get sick, I stop doing stuff and zone out.