Sunday, September 23, 2007

"Dead" Man Wakes Up Under Autopsy Knife

This post is straight out of Stephen King or Edgar Allan Poe short story. Some poor guy was in a car accident, pronounced dead at the scene and taken to the morgue where an autopsy was started. The medical examiners quickly realized something was not right... Bizarre Reuters story:

CARACAS (Reuters) - A Venezuelan man who had been declared dead woke up in the morgue in excruciating pain after medical examiners began their autopsy.

Carlos Camejo, 33, was declared dead after a highway accident and taken to the morgue, where examiners began an autopsy only to realize something was amiss when he started bleeding. They quickly sought to stitch up the incision on his face.

"I woke up because the pain was unbearable," Camejo said, according to a report on Friday in leading local newspaper El Universal.

His grieving wife turned up at the morgue to identify her husband's body only to find him moved into a corridor -- and alive.

Reuters could not immediately reach hospital officials to confirm the events. But Camejo showed the newspaper his facial scar and a document ordering the autopsy.

Wow. It seems that Mr. Camejo is lucky in that the medical examiners realized that he was still alive, but unlucky in that the folks at the accident scene screwed up BIGTIME. I can't even imagine the helplessness Mr. Camejo must have felt as his autopsy got started; the excruciating pain he must have felt. Here's hoping for a quick and full recovery for Mr. Camejo.

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Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Kathy Griffin Offends Jesus and His Followers. "Hurtful" Remarks to be Censored out of Awards Show.

Kathy Griffin made what some construe as offensive remarks towards Jesus as part of her acceptance speech for winning an award for her reality cable series. Yahoo News Reuters excerpt:

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Comic Kathy Griffin's "offensive" remarks about Jesus at the Creative Arts Emmy Awards will be cut from a pre-taped telecast of the show, the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences said on Tuesday.

Griffin made the provocative comment on Saturday night as she took the stage of the Shrine Auditorium to collect her Emmy for best reality program for her Bravo channel show "My Life on the D-List."

"A lot of people come up here and thank Jesus for this award. I want you to know that no one had less to do with this award than Jesus," an exultant Griffin said, holding up her statuette. "Suck it, Jesus. This award is my god now."
Asked about her speech backstage a short time later, an unrepentant Griffin added, "I hope I offended some people. I didn't want to win the Emmy for nothing."

The speech drew fire from a leading Roman Catholic group, the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights, which condemned Griffin's remarks as "obscene and blasphemous."

"It is a sure bet that if Griffin had said, 'Suck it, Muhammad,' there would have been a very different reaction," Catholic league president Bill Donohue said in a statement posted on the group's Web site. He called on TV academy president Dick Askin to denounce Griffin's "hate speech" and on Griffin to apologize.

Griffin's reaction to the imbroglio, according to a statement issued by her publicist: "Am I the only Catholic left with a sense of humor?"

Good question. Especially in light of Mr. Donahue's remark that makes it apparent that he'd have found no problem with her having attacked Muhammad in her speech instead of Jeshua ben Yosef.

As someone who was raised as a Roman Catholic (Extremely lapsed. I left the Church way back in high school), I am apparently supposed to be as offended as Mr. Donahue is at what Ms. Griffin said. I'm not. Not in the least. And not because I am a fan of Ms. Griffin or her work. In fact, I find her routine shallow and pedantic, and her persona to be shrill and abrasive. However, she is perfectly within her First Amendment rights to point out the phony piety of performers who thank Jesus for their good fortune when receiving awards, but seem to forget Christ's message the other 364 days of the year (drug busts, physical abuse, etc.). At least that is how I read her words.

It's sort of like what Jim Bouton wrote in "Ball Four" when he expressed a similar discomfort with the way his fellow baseball players and other athletes praised Jesus for their victories, while he secretly harbored a desire to say (paraphrasing) "It was my muscles, not Jesus" as the reason for his success.

It's all simple semantics, so can't everyone just chill and stop waiting to be offended by meaningless things like this?

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Monday, September 10, 2007

Daddy's Got a New PC!

It's the HP Pavilion a6130n. System characteristics: 300GB hard drive, AMD Athlon 64 X2 Dual Core Processor with CD/DVD Read/Write, 3GB RAM (That's right!) and a 17-inch flat screen monitor (Model vp17). Oh yes, and an HP Deskjet 4180 printer/copier/scanner (which has GOT to be better than that Lexmark POS I had which would have made a decent anchor).

Want to talk about speed? The damned thing SCREAMS!!! My old rig was a Dell Dimension L550 that I bought in 2000. It ran Windows 98, had a 10GB hard drive and 128MB RAM. Thanks to a slight upgrade to 192 MB a couple of years ago, courtesy of Ken Kanniff, Connecticut's Most Wanted, and an upgrade from Dial-Up to DSL, I entered the late 20th century by the middle of the first decade of the 21st.

But I am behind the curve no more! And no, I won't tell you about the obscenely good deal I got as part of a Labor Day promotion at Circuit City. Suffice it to say that I spent about $300.00 less on this rig than I did on the Dell back in 2000.

Anyway, that's all for now. I'll try to get something more going on this pitiful excuse for a blog. And Helena, thanks for your comment on my Philip Lynott post. You bring the number of commenters to seven! Please stop by again!

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Chipper Jones Blasts Umps in Braves Loss

Atlanta Braves third baseman, Larry "Chipper" Jones, was none too happy with the way the umpires in last night's 5-2 loss to the Philadelphia Phillies called balls and strikes, and he is calling on MLB to do something about it. ESPN News AP wire excerpt:

ATLANTA -- Not long after the Atlanta Braves lost for the 10th time in 14 games, Chipper Jones had some choice words for home plate umpire Rick Reed.

The Braves struck out six times in a 5-2 loss to Philadelphia on Tuesday night, continuing their descent in the NL East.

Jones hit a solo homer in the fourth and accounted for another RBI in the fifth when he walked with the bases loaded. He did not strike out in the game, but his at-bat against Phillies starter Kyle Lohse
in the fifth made him furious.

"The first pitch to me with the bases loaded was in my batter's box, inside," Jones told reporters after the game. "Now you tell me how I'm supposed to hit that. We have to get Questec here in this ballpark. We've got to. Umpires have got to be held accountable. That's Little League World Series stuff right there."

"It's a joke," Jones said. "I'm tired of it. And baseball can fine me whatever they want. I do not care. Somebody's got to say something. I've got more walks than strikeouts in my career -- I know what a strike looks like."

What Larry is referring to is the Questec camera system that was installed in about a dozen major league ballparks beginning about five or six years ago. This brings up the question of instant replay. I don't think instant replay is a good idea, or even a necessary one as far as calling balls and strikes is concerned. Games are, in most people's minds, far too long as they are, and to stop the game over a questionable pitch a dozen or so times a game would drive fans away.

The people who manage the umpires should be analyzing the Questec logs, and adopt that system in all the ballparks, then use that information to grade the umps and, if necessary, get the bad umps additional training (by way of demotion to the minors or fire them for their incompetence. Too harsh? Players make their living, in large part, based on how the umps call the games. If a player slips, is he not subject to demotion, trade or release? Then why not have the same arrangement for umpires?

Now, as far as using instant replay on situations like fan interference, fair or foul, home run or wall scraper, tag or missed tag, etc., I am all for that. There are dozens of instances in which championships were decided because of shitty calls. The St. Louis Cardinals lost the 1985 World Series because of a lousy call at first base in the ninth inning of Game Six. The Baltimore Orioles lost a game in the 1997 ALCS to the Yankees because of the Jeffrey Maier "home run" ball that Derek Jeter hit, which everyone watching the game knew was interference but the right field ump, Richie Garcia, who laughed about his mistake afterwards (Not to mention the way the Red Sox got ripped off in the 1999 ALCS with the Yankees when Jose Offerman was called out on a tag play in which Chuck Knoblauch missed Offerman by five feet. Not that I'm bitter about that...). We don't need that type of arrogance. Instant replay should not be viewed as a tool to show up the umps, but rather an assistant to help them make difficult calls, and to get those calls right. Omissioner Bud Selig must wake up and get this vital 20th century technology into the game before the 21st century gets much older.

As for Larry and his complaint, hey man, I hear ya, especially after Josh Beckett got stiffed in his start in Yankee Stadium last weekend. At one point Beckett threw five straight strikes to Melky Cabrera and walked him. The next batter, Johnny Damon hit a single for an RBI, so yeah, I can see where you are coming from. Still, it seems a bit ironic that, after having been part of a team that got away with the type of shit about which you now choose to complain, what with Javy Lopez setting up in the opposite batters box for Tom Glavine, and Eddie Perez doing the same for Greg Maddux and getting ridiculous strike calls for ten years, you now want the umps to call the strike zone fairly. Well, good luck with that, Larry.

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Sunday, September 02, 2007

Buchholz Tosses No-Hitter at Orioles. Timlin Reaches Milestone.

Red Sox rookie right-hander Clay Buchholz threw a no-hitter last night in his second major league start, beating the Orioles 10-0 at Fenway.

The kid was throwing some nasty stuff that included fastballs that reached 92 MPH, looping curves and changeups that dropped from the knees to the dirt. He threw 115 pitches, struck out nine, walked three and hit one batter. He was helped defensively by second baseman Dustin Pedroia who, in the top of the seventh, dove for a ball up the middle off the bat of Miguel Tejada to throw him out and keep the drama moving.

The funny thing was that Buchholz was given this start because Tim Wakefield was unable to pitch on Friday night, which moved Saturday's scheduled starter Julian Tavarez up one day, necessitating the call for the rookie.

Buchholz is the third Red Sox pitcher to throw a no-hitter this millennium (Derek Lowe versus the Deviled Eggs in 2002 and Hideo Nomo versus the Orioles in 2001 were the others).

Buchholz started the season at Double-A, pitched well there for two months and was moved up to Triple-A, and was called up to the big club for a start against the Angels a couple of weeks ago which he won. I wasn't thrilled about the way the Sox seemed to be rushing him, but injuries to Curt Schilling, and their inexplicably dumb trade of Joel Piniero to the Cardinals (3-2 in six starts with a 3.71 ERA) for the infamous Player To Be Named Later made it damned near impossible for the Sox not to bring him along.

So congratulations to Red Sox rookie Clay Buchholz, who, let the record show, has one (1) more no-hitter than William Roger (The Mercenary) Clemens.

And speaking of records, congratulations to Red Sox reliever Mike Timlin who made his 1,000th career appearance in Friday night's game, becoming just the 13th major league pitcher to reach the milestone.