Some real investigative journalism

A front-page story in my local paper (that would be The Washington Post) this past Sunday describes a disturbing trend. It seems as though many impoverished areas of this country also have high rates of disability claims. In other words: false disability claims from people who just can’t find a job.

(Yeah, no one has ever made that connection before.)

The ground-breaking discovery in this protracted piece was not merely the above connection, though. It was that in addition to this insidious relationship, these same people also…


Yup. Scum of the earth. Thanks for that hard-hitting journalism, Washington Post.

On TV yesterday

That was the Bullets you were watching last night, circa 1993. Let’s hope this is not an indicator of things to come. At least the Wiz can return home now that the circus has left town.

For those of you not in D.C. I mean that literally.

And oh, those South Carolina Gamecocks, playing a little better than their ’90s counterparts, but falling a bit short in their efforts as well. It was the women’s team, of course, who emerged victorious this weekend, no less interesting but no more useful to my wallet. I mean bracket.

At least there are the Capitals, playing their best last night against one of the NHL’s best. Unfortunately they are in mid-season form right now, that beautiful state which tends to fall apart the moment the post-season arrives.

Does this post sound a bit lugubrious?

(Pause while you look up lugubrious.)

No, no. For today there is a full slate baseball, and if yesterday’s games were any indication (the overall quality, not the sorry performance of my beloved Bronx Bombers), we have nothing to worry about.

All I want for April

There are two teams I need this weekend not to play like I remember them from my youth. One would be the Washington Bullets—er, Wizards—who Wednesday night played much more like the hapless Bullets with whom I grew up than their 2017 counterparts.

The second would be this year’s NCAA tournament Cinderella, the South Carolina Gamecocks. Growing up I’m pretty sure I didn’t even realize South Carolina had a basketball program. “Carolina” simply meant one thing: UNC. Well, now the Heels have got company, and if I want to see any return on investment from my annual foray into basketball bracketology, I’ve got to have the Gamecocks playing like their neighbors to the north.

Is that too much to ask?

D.C. sports train rolls on

Gotta love a night in which my local pro hockey team (that would be the Washington Capitals) puts up a great win on the road and my local pro basketball team (that would be the Washington Wizards) is playing a Pacific Time Zone opponent so weak I can file this story even before the game’s over!

The Madness has arrived

It took a week and a half and about 50-some games but the NCAA Tournament found its mojo this weekend, producing the magic to which we’ve become accustomed each March.

Let me for a moment brag and report that my beleaguered bracket, so miserable looking after last weekend, produced not one but two teams in the Final Four. Okay, they were both #1 seeds, but we all know that strategy is hardly a lock.

Looking to next weekend, I am filled with anticipation.

Dear Lord, give us a Carolina-Carolina final, please. Or at least Gonzaga-Oregon. It’s been far too long since we’ve had a geographically-amusing finale.

After March Madness I like an Amusing April.

Midnight madness

There was a time, in my youth, in which I’d have appreciated basketball games beginning at nearly 11:00 and ending long after midnight.

Actually, I still do appreciate such.

Just… not… the next… morning.


Red no more

A page-one story in Sunday’s Washington Post describes Virginia as a “purple state.”

I live here… it’s about as purple as the Jolly Green Giant.

The way I’d describe Virginia is a red state with an embarrassing blotch of dark blue at the top, and unfortunately that blotch blotches out the lower 95 percent of the commonwealth where real Virginians (read: real Americans) live. The blue blotch is where Beltway types and various overpaid government employees and contractors live alongside five or six of us who’ve actually traveled through flyover country.

This was one of the many things I didn’t realize before moving here but discovered quickly upon crossing the blue border into enemy territory.

Trouble is the government types are spreading like locusts across the state.

The real part of the state.

Dear Lord, please don’t let us become another Maryland.

Chuck Berry, 1926-2017


If I’m ever so fortunate to have a front-page story about my death in The Washington Post, please do not let the headline read: “Exuding the dangerous appeal of rock music.”


How about “Rock God passes to other side of mortality,” or something like that. It’s difficult to sum up deities in so few words.

Perhaps no one described the life of Charles Anderson Berry better than John Lennon, who once opined, “If you tried to give rock-and-roll another name, you might call it ‘Chuck Berry.’”

There are literally thousands of other musicians of much greater caliber and renown than I who have called Chuck Berry this and that and the patient zero of rock and the man who got them started, etc., etc. Let me add no more. The thing I have said for years is that if I could go back in time and perform with any musician, living or dead, any band, any act, any setting, I would choose Chuck Berry in about 1956. Getting to play piano with Chuck Berry singing and playing guitar. That’s my dream gig.

I should have included Chuck Berry on my Mount Rushmore of persons born in 1926 who’ve been at their current gigs for waaayyy longer than anyone might have thought (see “Royal birthday”). Chuck was still performing as of very recently, and in fact will have a new album released posthumously later this year.

And through the magic of recorded sound, of course, the Man will never really be gone, right?

Gods have a way of doing that.

You heard it here first

First snowstorm of the year on March 14? Thanks for proving me right, Mother Nature.

About a year and a half ago I posted on this site my theory that a year is not 365 days but more like 367 or 368, and that we’ve gotten off track to the point that we’re now off by several months. It’s actually only December or January right now, so you may still have some more winter to go. You can read the entire text here.

Love being right all the time.