Friday, August 26, 2016

Dog Day Afternoon

Thank Anubis It's Friday!

"Fetch me some Milk-Bones, mortal, and be quick about it!"


I have never actually owned a dog in my life. My grandfather owned a few, including
a border collie  and a dachshund of whom I was very fond, but I've always been a cat person myself. My writing hero Raymond Chandler was a cat person, too, but in honor of National Dog Day I thought I would mention that several of my other writing heroes were dog lovers.

WFB riding in his limo with Rowley

Conservative author and intellectual William F. Buckley, Jr. was partial to Cavalier King Charles Spaniels...

Parker with Pearl

...while mystery writer Robert B. Parker was fond of German short-haired pointers (his detective character Spenser even had one in several novels).

Lehane put up posters to help find Tessa

Mystery writer Dennis Lehane made headlines with his search for his missing beagle.

Living the life I live currently, there's no room for a dog, but if I were to win the Powerball...well, let's just say there would be an animal or two who would get "rescued" shortly thereafter.

"'An animal or two,' yeah right. Who do you think you're fooling?"

I suppose it is possible that the number might be greater than two...


My beloved Kansas City Royals had their nine-game winning streak snapped at Marlins Park in Miami on Wednesday night, but last night they bounced back with a 5-2 victory over the Marlins. They also won the three-game series, their sixth straight series win.

Now 10-10, 4.88 ERA

Royals starter Edinson Volquez turned in a solid performance, giving up only two unearned runs in his five complete innings. He only allowed three hits and a single walk, and the only runs that scored against him were the result of a throwing error.

Relievers Chris Young, Matt Strahm, Joakim Soria, and Kelvin Herrera held the Marlins off the board for the remainder of the game, though they did mount a couple of threats. The bullpen's club-record scoreless streak has now reached 38 2/3 innings, the longest streak in the major leagues since 2003.

As in the previous two games, there wasn't
a great deal of hitting, although the Royals made the most of their opportunities.

SS Alcides Escobar was the hitting star, going 2-for-4 with two RBIs and two runs scored. One of his hits was a home run to left center field to lead off the 4th.

"Now it's off to Boston and Fenway Park!"

Yes...not a venue that has been too kind to the Royals, either...

Just Wait

From the pen of Lisa Benson, whose editorial cartoons you should read often, as I do.

Until Next Time...

One of the things I miss the most since my best friend Matt died in 2008 is our frequent conversations about music. In the thirteen years I knew him he introduced me to several musical artists who became favorites, and he in turn became a fan of some of my music as well (we attended R.E.M. and Maynard Ferguson concerts together, for instance).

Just after school had started in the fall of 1997 he stopped by my apartment and handed me a CD, telling me he expected me to listen to it immediately and that he would be calling later that evening to get my reaction. It was definitely not normal for him to have such an enthusiastic reaction to a new record (especially one from an unknown artist), so of course I did as he asked.

On August 26, 1997 the new band Creed had released their debut album, My Own Prison, and Matt became a big fan the first time he heard the title track on the radio. While I didn't realize it at the time, the music spoke to some of Matt's own personal demons. The music was strong, heavy rock, and I liked it, too.

I wasn't alone. The album peaked at only No. 22 on the Billboard 200 Albums chart, but it stayed on that chart for more than two years. It produced four charting singles, and eventually sold 6.5 million records.

The two albums which followed the successful My Own Prison both hit No. 1 on the Billboard 200 (Human Clay sold nearly 12 million copies in the U.S. alone, while Weathered received six platinum certifications from RIAA).

As often happens in the music business, though, the band's star burned brightly but only briefly. Just four years after their multi-platinum debut their recording career basically ended. A belated reunion album in 2009 sold less than half a million copies and put to rest rumors of a permanent revival of the group.

Today's send-off is the official video for the song that made Matt a fan, from the band's VEVO channel. The usual '90s music video disclaimers apply. Enjoy...

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