Tuesday, November 22, 2016


Monday Night Foul-Up

For the first time in its history, Monday Night Football visited
a foreign country, as the Oakland Raiders played the Houston Texans at Estadio Azteca in Mexico City.

Because the Chiefs lost on Sunday their playoff chances would have suffered no matter which of their AFC rivals won this game, but the Raiders winning was the worse of the two possible outcomes, so of course that's what happened.

Apparently, the NFL decided the best way to make an impression on the locals attending the game was to introduce them to shitty NFL officiating, as the zebras handed the game to the Raiders by nullifying a Texans TD with a blown call and then blunting a late 4th quarter Texans scoring drive with a series of bad ball spots.

"You're just mad because you stayed up late and the Raiders won."

Not true...the officiating was legitimately dreadful the whole game, with almost every bad call favoring Oakland...

Feast Day

St. Cecilia (1606), by Guido Reni

Today is the feast day of St. Cecilia,
a 2nd century martyr who has been one of the most popular saints since her veneration began in the 4th century. She is one of only seven women other than the Virgin Mary to be mentioned by name in the Canon of the Mass.

Cecilia is a pre-Congregation saint, typical of martyrs in the days before the process was formalized in 1588 under Pope Sixtus V.

Cecilia is the patron of musicians, as well as the Archdiocese of Omaha.

A New Champion?

The 2016 FIDE World Chess Championship Match got under way in New York on November 11, pairing the reigning champion Magnus Carlsen of Norway and World No. 9 player Sergey Karjakin of Russia, who won the Candidates Tournament in Moscow in March.

The 12-game match had been uneventful until yesterday, as matches between strong players often are, with the first seven games ending in draws (although a couple of Karjakin's escapes were considered miraculous).

Things got exciting on Monday, however, as Karjakin won Game 8 with the black pieces, taking a 4.5-3.5 lead in the match with just four games remaining. He only needs to draw the remaining four games to claim the title. That's a tall order against a player as strong as Carlsen, but the odds favor Karjakin.

"Did somebody make a mistake moving one of his horsies?"

Nobody thinks you're funny...

We Were All Freshmen Once, Kid

From the wry comic strip Zits, by Jerry Scott and Jim Borgman, which you should read every day, as I do.

Until Next Time...

By the late spring of 1968, Elvis Presley's career as a performer and as a recording artist was in eclipse. He hadn't had a Billboard Top 10 hit record in three years, much less a No. 1. By that point it had become unusual for a Presley single to even reach the Top 40, and concert bookings were rare, as his series of cheesy movies with forgettable soundtracks had turned off all but his most loyal fans.

His career began to rebound following his involvement in an NBC televised special simply called Elvis. The music for the show consisted of some production numbers that were precursors of what Elvis's Las Vegas shows would be, some informal jamming of his older hits with a studio audience present, and a couple of numbers featuring Elvis performing with a full orchestra, with a live audience. All of the recording sessions for the special were done in Burbank, California the last week of June. though the show wasn't broadcast until December.

On November 22, 1968 RCA Records released highlights from the sessions in an album simply called Elvis, but it soon came to be called the "Comeback Special" album by his fans.

It was Presley's most successful album release in more than three years, peaking at No. 8 on the Billboard 200 Albums chart and earning a platinum certification from RIAA.

The TV special introduced a lot of teenagers to an Elvis they had never seen outside of ridiculous Hollywood movies, and a lot of them liked what they saw. The stripped-down, informal jamming surrounded by fans was an ideal setting for Presley, who was having fun singing this music for the first time in years. His charisma as a performer wasn't gone after all, as some had claimed.

Today's send-off is what came to be known as the "Guitar Man Medley," from The King's YouTube channel. Enjoy...

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