Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Side Show Status

  As I was struggling to wake up this morning, a very interesting press conference interrupted the usual Today Show banter about Royal Weddings or You Tube videos. President Obama stepped to the podium to let the world know that he was born in Hawaii (one of the United States of America). I'm sure Trump will take credit for this. Either way he's still a "side show", but even I find a good side show entertaining.

  That's all fine and good, but I was more pleased to hear the Prez say what I've been yelling at my television for I don't know how long. With all the issues going on in the world right now, why does the American media get so caught up in trivial things? If I want to see a You Tube video of a baby laughing, I will go to You Tube and type that into the search bar. I don't care about the proper way to have tea with the Queen of England. I want to know if there's a credible threat to my safety roaming the streets. I want to know why ten dollars in gas is just enough to get from the gas station to home. Is anyone doing anything to try to change that? Is there hope? And if not? Fine. At least give me a heads up instead of pushing The Royal Wedding in my face every morning for the past two months for hours on end.

  I get tired of having to read the real news scroll across the bottom of the screen.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Playing Politics and Picking Battles

  Something happened today that is not a big deal, but did make me think about the power of writing and the sacrifice that writers are sometimes asked to make.

  I submitted a work of fiction (that was based on something that actually happened and used that person's name) for a symposium that I will be presenting at in a couple of weeks. This symposium is the first one at this particular venue and the staff hopes to receive funding for it in the future. The person I name in this fiction is someone who has the power to add to those funds.

  I was asked to submit something else to read at this event. To me that's no big deal. I knew when I wrote that piece that it would be controversial to some people. I knew that it would have an audience that could see it for what it is and an audience that couldn't look past the surface to see the real meaning.

  There are times in life when we have to play politics for the greater good. I don't see this as sensoring. They said they would gladly display it for others to read. There is a time to be hard headed and a time to play the game. This goes for just about any situation in life. Business, school or family. We have to pick our battles. Hopefully, in the future this thing will be big enough to stand on it's own and some young punk kid that wrote something about how Obama is the worst president since Richard Nixon will be able to read that to an audience.

Monday, April 4, 2011

March Madness and the Dream for a College Football Playoff

  My NCAA bracket has taken the stomping of a lifetime this year. As I anticipate tonight's game, I can't help but think about how great this tournament has been. Any number of games would have had a different outcome if one shot had been hit or missed. I remember all the analysts talking about who they thought would win and why. And I've become a fan of Charles Barkley bringing those analysts down a notch or two. If anyone knew who would be national champs before the tournament started then we should've carved out the trophy and given it to them right off the bat.

  I know the idea of a playoff in College Football is nothing new, but I think that it could be done. I think that it should be done. I also think that it could be done in conjunction with those precious BCS Bowl Games that bring in the BIG money to any school that makes the cut. And it seems like there are more of them every year.

  So in the spirit of unlikely events (like No. 8 Butler playing No. 3 UConn for a national title) I would like to outline my idea for a Bowl Game/Playoff hybrid.

  Over the past few years the problem with the BCS system hasn't been a concern for anyone except maybe the top 3 or 4 teams. I would like to see AT LEAST the top 3 teams, but no more than the top 5, compete in a playoff. The 2 and 3 teams (and 4 and 5 teams) would play each other early on in the Bowl Season. In the event that there is a tie for any of the top 5 spots those tied teams would play each other for that rank. The winner of that (those) game(s) (which could still be called bowl games and even the losing schools would still get a chunk of cash for) would have a while to rest and prepare for the national championship game against the number one team.

  In between this playoff game (or games) the traditional bowl games would be played. The schools would still have the financial benefits of the Bowl games and there would be little or no room left for the 3rd ranked team to say that they should have had a shot at the title. Football is a different beast and there would be no way to play a basketball type of playoff where the top 5 or so would play each other down to the last two standing so the BCS system would still play a role.

  I would gladly hear any counterpoints to this theory.