Saturday, August 04, 2007

Celtic's Deal For Garnett

Well, maybe the 20 year drought will finally come to an end for the championship-starved Boston Celtics. It's been 20 long years since the greatest team ever assembled in this writer's eyes, have won a championship. It's been so long since they won, that this generation's Celtic fans only know Larry Bird as a coach and general manager, Kevin McHale, as some lame-brain GM who traded us Garnett, and they think that Al Jefferson is Moses Malone! Oh wait a minute, they don't know who Moses Malone is either. Either way, besides making this team relevent again, and I'm sick of that term already, it should make them compete for an NBA title providing these 3 stars, Garnett, Allen, and Paul Pierce stay healthy. (I refuse to call them the Big Three since they can not hold a candle to Bird, McHale, and the Chief.) In this generation's NBA, you really only need 2 stars to win a title. Check the last few NBA champions; San Antonio-Duncan and Parker, Miami- Shaq and Wade, and LA-Shaq and Kobe. Even in the 1990's, Chicago really was MJ and Pippen. Look at who represented the Eastern Conference this year, Cleveland, which was essentially Lebron James and a bunch of high schoolers(young ones won't recall Moses Malone's comments back in 1981!). So, with 3 highly talented players to say the least, there's no reason if they're healthy that they can't compete for the NBA title over the next 3 years. I would like to see them add a veteren backup ala Dikembe Mutumbo, but all in all, you have to like this team's chances. And it is a nice change having them relevent again in this city. Woops, I used the relevent word again! Oh by the way, if they dared to win a championship this year, I know somewhere above Red will finally rest in peace,cigar in hand!

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

The Prophet

I have ALWAYS for years had unbelievable luck in "forecasting" events in sports, and more often than not, in the personal lives that surround me. Anybody who knows me will tell you this. With that said, here are some "predictions" that you can take to the bank!

The Celtics will trade their #5 pick as there is no way they will keep it and expect fans to pay exorbitant prices to see Jeff Green and Al Jeferson and Paul Pierce battle to a 500 record. And I predict the man they will acquire will be Shawn Marion of the Phoenix Suns, not Kevin Garnett, whom I would prefer to see them acquire.

Now I'll asterick that preiction by adding if, they are stupid enough to keeo the pick, it will be the kid from China that they'l take. They will not pass up a potential Dirk Nowitzki type with marketing potential.

Within 5 years, the Bruins, with zero interest, and the loss of millions, will relocate elsewhere in New England.

The Red Sox will allow Mike Lowell and Curt Schilling to walk at the end of the year, and will sign Arod, after he opts out of his contract. You read it here first! They will move him to short, Youkillis to third, and they will make another play for Todd Helton. They will also make every effort to trade Julio Lugo,Coco Crisp, and Willie Pena. Jacoby Ellsbury will be their staring center fielder next year.

The Patriots, if they stay healthy will ...............lets just say be the team to beat this year!Oh yes, I say Randy Moss has a huge year.

The Republican ticket will be Giuliani and McCain.

The Democratic ticket will be Biden and Dodd.

Oh yes, David Chase WILL make a Sopranos movie within a year!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Remember, you read it here first!

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Billy Donovan Next Celtic's Coach?

Ok, the last time I envisioned a leader of a Boston sports team, I kid you not, I thought Bill Belichick would make a great coach for the Patriots! I distinctly recall calling Ted Sarandis of WEEI's "Ted Nation" to give my thoughts when Pete Carroll was canned, and of course at that time Teddy and guest Kevin Mannix shot me down big time.

Why did I think he'd make a great coach? Because he was the genius assistant that every single time his teams played the Patriots, be it as coach of the Browns, or as the Tuna's defensive coordinator, he ALWAYS got in the quarterback's heads with great schemes, always!!! I've told Coach Belichick that myself in a letter many years later as well. I won't say 'I told you so,' but time has proven me right 3 championships later.

So here I am again, championing the next leader in Boston, the next head coach of the Boston Celtic's, coach Billy Donovan of the NCAA champs Florida Gators. Why? First and foremost his teams, like Belichick teams, are ALWAYS well coached and well prepared and play TEAM ball. He's won 2 consecutive NCAA titles, a great feat in today's world of parity. He has no ego. He's a local boy, and best of all, he's good buddies with, you guessed it, Bill Belichick (Belichick was a guest of his at the final game and has also given Billy's team pep-talks as well). And to me, ANYBODY Bill Belichick can intellectually connect with, has to have that"certain something." The Celts could do a whole lot worse than make a move on college basketballs's newest genius before he moves on to Kentucky.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Veracity TV appearance

Recently I was guest of Tom Sheff, the host of Veracity, which is a half hour weekly show on Newton's cable televsion. And may I say I enjoyed every minute of it! Most of the shows on Veracity focus on political issues and topics related to Newton, Mass. The host, Tom Sheff, is an old acquaintance of mine, so I may be biased in saying this, but besides being a very viable candidate to become the next mayor and leader of Newton, he is also a terrific host who has the ability to put all his guests at ease during the segment, as I have watched, witnessed, and now experienced. The show itself strayed from it's natural course as the main topic of discussion was the local sports scene and my blogspot. And being life-long sports fans from the Boston area, it's a never-ending topic for discussion for the both of us. Anyways, I just wanted to reiterate to any local citizens to make sure you catch, of course my airing in late April, and every airing of Mr. Sheff's show, as you will be informed and entertained.

Dead Silence

This is a new horror movie release that harkens back to one of the better Twilight Zone episodes; one in which killer ventriliquist dummies are on the loose. Remember the movie Magic? Some of that is in here, too. The plot summary involves a young woman who opens up a package that turns out to be a ventriliquist dummy, that, let's just say doesn't produce happy results. Her husband travels back to their childhood home to investigate the history of the dummy and the woman who made them. Needless to say there's a whole story behind all of it. Refreshing, in that for a horror movie in this day of age to not have the prerequisite lost teenagers spending half the movie having sex and then being sliced up. This movie has some real creepy moments and the dummy's are down-right evil! And quite the twist in the end as well. Thumbs up from me!

Children of Men

A quick review of a delight and unexpected surprise of what is really a "under the radar" new sci-fi dvd release. Starring Clive Owen, this is a story about the world, circa, 2027, in which all women are infertile and the youngest alive is 18 years old. Without giving away the details, as you can probably figure out, there happens to be a woman who is pregnant and the jist of the story is that Clive Owen, gets caught up in a plot to smuggle her out of London, with everyone, from the refugees to the London police, after them. It really is an interesting plot, lots of twists,turns, and action; and the filming technique makes you feel you're in the story. Really a terrific movie, huge thumbs up from me!

Monday, March 12, 2007

Touching All The Bases

As I round the bases, just some food for thoughts on this pre-Spring Monday morning.

1st Base- The Bruins- Does anybody care about the Bruins and hockey in general any more? Whenever I pass through NESN on a game night, the empty seats are appalling. Hockey was THE sport in Boston in the early 1970's with the Bobby Orr, Phil Esposito era when everybody knew their names and everyone played street hockey. Now they are like a minor league affiliate in this town.

2nd Base- The Celtics- They were to Boston sports in the 1980's what the Bruins were in the 1970's. You just knew when the Larry Bird-Kevin McHale era ended, that was it. And you know what? That was it! Their only hope of becoming a player again in this sports market was to "casually" rest Paul Pierce and play the string out with the kids and pray for enough ping pong balls to land Greg Oden, the next franchise center. So what do they do? They bring Pierce back, run off a streak of 4 wins in a row, and basically, eliminated the higher percentage of landing Oden. Why? You got me. I have no faith in the Danny Ainge- Doc Rivers collaboration. I like Al Jefferson, who is developing nicely, and Pierce is Pierce. But without a point guard to lead this mess, hello Jason Kidd, and a legit center, they'll forever be the Boston Clippers. So sad! They seem to have no plan in place. Danny Ainge supposedly told ESPN recently he was surprised at the make-up of his roster. Surprised?! He put it together! Oy vey!

3rd Base-the Red Sox- So begins the Dice era. I personally think to give this guy zillions when he never picthed in a major league game made no sense. But we all know it was to keep him from the Yanks and with their expert marketing, they'll double their invest ment in him with marketing out in the Far East. Now with that said, methinks he'll be ok, he's no Pedro though. (By the way are you concerned when you hear the muffles of his fastball having no pop?). And, if their starting pitching can hold up, and they develop some sort of bullpen rotation, they'll be in it till the end barring injuries. I say Papelbon will have the biggest year amongst starters.

Homeplate/Home Run- the Patriots-You have to love their off-season moves so far! You can't tell me they're not going for it all this year. And why not, short of a Reche Caldwell drop, this team wins another Super Bowl. They've added a premier lineback to the team in Adalieus Thomas. And they've added two top receivers in Donte Stallworth and Wes Welker, along with running back Sammy Morris. They franchised Asante Samuel and they have two number ones in this April's draft. Now of course things can change in a blink if anybody goes down, and it is football-ie injuries. But again, barring injuries, are they not they waaay-early favorite in the 2008 Super Bowl?!

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Sox Acquire Beckett

Anyone who doesn’t love this Red Sox deal of acquiring 25 year old Marlin flamethrower, ex world series MVP, Josh Beckett, and Gold Glove winner, Mike Lowell for minor leaguers Hanley Ramirez and Isabel Sanchez is flat-out crazy!!!!!

The Sox picked up a potential number one starter for years to come, who, if healthy, can give them 20 wins, an ERA under 3.00, 300 strikeouts, and shut the Yankees down when needed. Sound like a young Curt Schilling to anybody?! And for what? A minor league shortstop with potential and disciplinary questions who will not play shortstop here due to Edgar Renteria's presence there. And they didn’t have to part with prize prospect Jon Lester, instead giving up borderline prospect Isabel Sanchez. To me, this is a win-win gamble that could pay huge dividends for this team for years to come.

All I want to know is which of the 42 guys running the team made this trade!

Monday, November 21, 2005

The Poseidon Adventure

I had to watch the 3-hour made for TV remake of the one of my favorite movies and the first movie I saw unattended in a movie theatre in 1972, I believe. And the results were not pleasing. The most I can say is that for a 3-hour a movie, it did keep me watching all the way to the end. With that said, let’s go through why it didn’t make the cut.

The casting was awful! I always say you can’t remake a classic movie if it also has a classic cast. To replace the likes of Gene Hackman and Ernest Borgnine and Shelly Winters for a Steve Guttenberg (who looks awful by the way), Rutger Hauer (who put me to sleep as a the priest; he only excels playing evil villains), and a cast of nobodies, just didn’t capture the "spirit" of their situation throughout the movie.

The whole idea of the ship being bombed by terrorist activities versus a tidal wave was also pretty lame. I realize they wanted to revise it, but you know, it worked the first time, stick with it! (I’m surprised they didn’t blame President Bush for the SS Poseidon!). I wanted to stuff the digital camera down that little kid’s throat, as the constant filming was beyond obnoxious. The best part of the original version was the survivors’ harrowing journey and escape from the top of the ship to the bottom (since it was upside down). But in this remake, every time we got a shot of them making their way through another harrowing moment, all momentum was killed with a cut back to the headquarters’ staff meetings, and Navy Seals. How stupid! I could go on and on but, what’s the point? Oh yes, and you like how the first group of survivors fought their way to their safety, but the second group just flew up the tree and blew through all obstacles in minutes to catch up with the first group?!

Anyways, on a scale from 1-4, 1 is the word.

Friday, November 11, 2005

Buh Bye Theo

It is time for Red Sox nation to stop eulogizing Theo Epstein, the man who put together (as a colleague suggested) "half a team."

In general, I believe he did a good job with this ball club, especially in helping to build up a prosperous farm system. With that said, for the record, the 2004 World Series team was really as much, if not more so, Dan Duquette's creation as it was Theo Epstein's. Pedro, Manny, Trot, Varitek, DLowe, to name a few were all Duquette people. As for the 2003 and 2005 Red Sox, they were the same kind of team as any Red Sox team that preceded Theo's arrival. So, yes I give him credit for Big Papi and Schilling, but he must also answer for the ridiculous contracts he gave to Matt Clement and Edgar Renteria. And the way Red Sox nation and the press has been reacting, you'd think Theo won a championship by himself! Actually they're acting as if he died, its ridiculous! He couldn't work with club president Larry Lucchino and he moved on (I can't blame him for that myself).

But for goodness sakes Red Sox nation, move on also, really!!!

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Think Pats in 2006

This will not be the season of the Patriots, I can assure you. After getting stoked by the Colts last night on Monday Night Football, it is safe to say that if this team wins their division and makes the playoffs, they will not go far.

The one man associated with this team that I cannot blame is Tom Brady, who continues to show how terrific in the Joe Montana mold he is. But the defense in particular is awful. Where has Richard "I'm in my contract year" Seymour been? And without him, Warren, Woolfork, and Green couldn't stop my grandmother. Bruschi and Vrabel have done all they could at linebacker, but guys like Chad Brown, Willie McGinest, and Roosevelt Colvin are all washed up. And the secondary without Rodney Harrison? Abysmal! Samuel and Eugene Wilson play like rookies and Dunae Starks has a bull’s-eye on his back.

Anyways, don’t expect much from this year's edition, even if they make the playoffs. Belichick's real challenge will be reassembling a new squad for 2006.

Friday, November 04, 2005

House of Wax

You can do worse with today’s releases of “so-called” horror movies than to rent “House of Wax.” A far-reaching remake of the Vincent Price classic, this one did have its moments and atmosphere to make it worth watching.

In a nutshell, it’s a group of college kids that end up in a town where the “local residents” seem to manage their situation through their house of wax (I’m careful not to reveal too much!). And again, you can kind of guess what happens to these younglings when they cross those obsessed with wax.

My complaint is I wish they showed more of the wax transformations (if that makes sense) since, to me, that’s the best part of the movie. But with that said, I do recommend it.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Good Luck!

Today Theo Epstein officially says goodbye to Red Sox nation amongst the local paper Watergate going on here in Boston. Today on WEEI sports radio, the public was privy into the hosts, two obnoxious guys, Dennis and Callahan, roasting the author of the column that appeared in Sunday's Globe, the alleged article that pretty much supposedly nixed any interest of Theo in returning to the Sox. The gist of it is that the article was weighted in favor of Sox president and now number one archenemy, Larry Lucchino, and the thought amongst locals here is that his camp leaked private information that was privy to Theo and Lucchino. It’s made for some entertaining radio and gossip.

Bottom line is that Theo doesn’t want to work for anybody that is going to disrespect him and micro-manage him and for that alone, I can’t blame him. He'll move on to better things, and the Sox will hire another competent GM that will make some blockbuster deals (bye Manny!), and everyone will move on.

Good luck Theo!

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Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Time To Go To Sirius, Howard

I have been a faithful listener of the daily simulcast “Howard Stern Show” for years. But with his impending departure to satellite radio, it has now gotten to the point where I wish he would just leave.

This morning I awoke to him arguing with his GM, Tom Chiasano, because they used his voice from his David Lee Roth interview of a week ago, the man replacing Howard, to promote David Lee Roth. Howard went on his tangent again about the disrespect and don't use his voice-overs to promote his replacement, blah babababa. Sorry Howard, wrong!

He has spent the I don’t know how many shows promoting his future satellite programming, even playing clips from shows he's currently airing! Imagine! That would be like you giving your notice at work, and the last 2 weeks on the job, you bring your new employers work into your old office, work on it on company time, and tell the current employees how the current company sucks and you should apply to his new company! What employer in the universe would allow that?! But KRock and Tom Chiasano do and he gets roasted. Amazing!

And the other thing is Howard pontificating about how much money he’s made Infinity… guess what Howard? You made yourself millions at the same time, not exactly slave labor! And, not to mention it landed you half a billion dollars in your next gig!

As for being a good sport and wishing David Lee well, umm I’m not so sure based on what I heard; which were comments like "why would you want to do it since you were once on top? And people will now ask you if the rumors are true about you being gay”, (that you could tell kind of peeved David Lee).

Anyways, at one time, I thought with my limited funds that I’d invest in a satellite radio because I didn’t want to miss his show. But knowing now it’s going to be a $12 a month fee to hear him put Jeff the Drunk and his other cronies on there, along with more raunchy stuff that he thinks is "progressive and innovative," along with hearing him whine through his whole show about how Infinity is being disrespectful to him, etc., at this point I can’t wait for him to leave already (quite frankly he "jumped the shark" a long time ago) and to give David Lee a chance, for free, no less.

Bye Howard!

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Should He Stay Or Should He Go?

Red Sox nation should know by today if "boy-wonder" native, Theo Epstein, will remain on as GM of our beloved Red Sox. The consensus amongst Red Sox nation is that he should most definitely remain on and the Sox should give-in to his demands for a 5 year multi-million dollar deal.

What has come out is that Theo has turned down a substantial raise and a 3-year deal and now the rumor mill tells us he may not get along with CEO Larry Luchino, a control freak. I keep thinking that maybe Theo keeps driving up his price because he really doesn’t want to come back and serve under Larry.

Red Sox nation contends that the Sox won their first championship in 86 years with Theo making the moves. The truth is a major part of the contributors of that ‘04 team were ex-GM, Dan Duquette's moves (like Manny, Pedro, Trot, Varitek, DLowe, etc). Theo's better moves included acquiring Schilling and Big Papi.

My feeling is that Theo walks and the Sox bring in an older guy with experience who will continue to manage the personnel in the system messrs Henry, Warner, and Luchino have set up. But personally, it would be best in the Sox interests to keep Theo. We'll see what happens.

Anyone need Dan Duquette's number?!

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

This drama starring Sean Penn and Nicole Kidman, is a movie that when you finish watching it makes you wish there was more action to it.

The story is about a United Nations interpreter who overhears an assassination plot and is pursued the rest of the movie with Sean Penn assigned to watch over her. Other than one very suspenseful and action packed scene, the rest of the movie seems to drag a bit on the weight of it’s own script.

If nothing else, it keeps you watching.

Manny Proposals

As I sit here and debate how I would rearrange the 2005 Red Sox, here are some suggestions:

Manny to New York for Jason Giambi. It will never happen but, the Yanks may feel they got all they could out of Giambi and they have Tino to cover first base. In return they get a native New Yorker who can hit 45 homeruns for them and play the outfield, which they’ll need with Sheffield possibly done and Matzui a free agent. The Sox get a consummate first baseman who found his stroke. The salaries are fairly compatible as well.

Package some prospects to Chicago for Mark Prior. They need a front line starter and Prior, coming off an injury-riddled year, could be the man. The Cubs need a left fielder that can hit and Manny is the man and they can afford him. Double a phenom Jon Lester or Bronson Arroyo and Manny to Chicago for M. Prior and J. Burnitz (who allows you to trade Trot).

Manny Ramirez and Manny DelCarmen to Texas for Mark Texeira. Texas has a young phenom ready to step in at first and needs a slugging outfielder. Manny fits the bill and they can afford him. And they desperately need pitching so you can throw in either DelCarmen or Arroyo. And Texeira comes to Boston as a young first baseman who will hit 40 plus homers behind Ortiz.

Arroyo and DelCarmen or Arroyo and Lester to Florida for Josh Beckett. He would be a number one guy for the Sox, throws smoke, former World Series MVP. And Florida, with AJ Burnett leaving, can replace Hurnett and Beckett with Arroyo and Lester who may be ready. And if you expand the deal, maybe you could include slugging first baseman, Carlos Delgado.

Just some thoughts to ponder as the hot stove season is about to begin.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Red Sox Reading Of The Will

As the 2005 Red Sox were officially laid to rest, the peeks into their 2006 future has begun. Here are one man’s opinions.

Theo Epstein, the boy wonder (though the Foulke, Clement, and especially Renteria signings were awful), is without a contract, but has done a good job in helping guide them to a world series and restocking their farm systems. He should and will return.

Manager Francona will probably get a contract extension, and though I’m still not sure it’s the best thing to do, I’m mixed about it all-I’m still awaiting Joe Torres’ departure in New York! Francona will be back.

1b- Millar is history. Thank God and here the search will begin in earnest. Personally, I’d look at guys like Todd Helton in Colorado. I’m not interested in mentioned name Aubrey Huff. They may look at home town product Carlos Pena in Detroit. And they’re crazy if they don’t bring back the best 1b backup in baseball, John Olerud.

2b-Graffino is gone and it will be rookie Dustin Pedroia and Alex Cora.

Ss- Unfortunately, they’re stuck with Edgar Renteria, nuff said.

3b- Mueller is gone and you’re probably looking at Kevin Youkillis taking over.

Lf- is Manny gone? I’m not so sure I’d trade him, as he and Ortiz are the best 1-2 sluggers in baseball. But I think he will be traded and who comes in is anybody’s guess. I’m hearing Brian Giles in San Diego. Maybe a free agent like Shawn Green, or if Manny is involved in a 3-way deal that involves Adam Cunn of Cincinnati, that may be your options.

Cf-I say Damon is gone, as they will not sign up for 4 years. The rumor mill mentions Tori Hunter of Minnesota.

Rf-Trot Nixon personifies guts and team spirit, but injuries have curtailed his production. I say he’s back one more year.

Dh- Big Papi, David Ortiz, is the best there is. MVP to me, and he should be signed to be with this team when he’s in a nursing home!

C-Varitek and Mirabelli will be back.

Starting pitching-Personally, I think Schilling is close to the end, but they’ll hope he can bounce back. Clement, Wells and Wakefield are signed through next year. I’d love to see them move Clement but I don’t think it’s a reality. I think Arroyo will be the trade bait as Clemens-clone, Jon Papelbon, moves into the starting rotation. I say they bring in another top starter since the 3rd and 4th starter deal killed them come playoff time. Who? I don’t know, though I don’t think it will be AJ Burnett. Could there be any way to pry Barry Zito away or Josh Beckett? Double a phenom Jon Lester isn’t far off either from the show.

Relief pitching-I would love to see them move crybaby Keith Foulke, and they just may if he’s healthy. Bradford and Myers will be back. Youngsters Manny DelCarmen and future closer Craig Hansen may be up. Timlin will probably be gone, so look for them to investigate a closer or at least some depth here as well.

Bench- Gabe Kapler may not be back due to his foot injury and if they don’t resign Nolerud, they’ll definitely need to revamp their bench next year.

All in all, it will be a very transitional year for the 2005-2006 Red Sox coming up.

In Theo we trust!

Monday, October 10, 2005

Patriots Update

With the last second win over Atlanta yesterday, improving the Patriots’ record to 3-2, fans shouldn’t get any misconceptions about their teams’ destiny the rest of the way.

If this team finishes in first place and makes the playoffs, it will be solely based on Belichick’s brains and Brady’s arm. Their defense is awful and the absence of Rodney Harrison hurts more than even expected. Past their defensive line, the linebackers, save for Mike Vrabel, just can’t tackle. Chad Brown, Willie McGinest, and Roosevelt Colvin seem to be at the end of their lines, and Monty Beisel seems more suited to being a backup. Unless Tedy Bruschi returns, and I still say he will, their linebackers are in trouble.

As for the secondary, Harrison’s leadership and talents are now sorely missed and I’m very disappointed that Eugene Wilson has regressed versus stepping up in Harrison’s absence. They will need to add a competent veteran back there at some point. Every team is marching through them like Sherman’s army and as I started out saying, this team will only win on Belichick’s brains and Brady putting up more points than his defense is getting scorched for.

Like the 2005 Red Sox, this is not a championship caliber team this year.

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

The Thing

I felt compelled to post an entry on “The Thing,” the John Carpenter remake of the 1950’s sci-fi classic. Starring Kurt Russell, this movie, forgive me for being bias towards it, is one of the best sci-fi movies ever made. A U.S. crew stationed in the Antarctica is encountered by and fights off an alien that can kill humans and recreates itself in the human, or even animal image. There is definitely a similarity to “Invasion of the Body Snatchers.” The setting and mood is perfect: frigid temperatures and trapped in the middle of nowhere like the crew in “Alien” trapped in the ship in space, and each one wondering if the next one is now the “thing.” It’s the best thing Kurt Russell has ever done and it also has one of the best sci-fi horror movie "scores" of all time. I’ve seen it a million times and it never grows old. Rent it!

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Trading Deadline Nears

What should the Sox do as July 31 approaches? Would I break the bank for the owner of a 500 record, AJ Burnett? No. But I do think they definitely need a starting pitcher and a closer. Watching Curt Schilling, it becomes more apparent each time out there he just doesn’t have it any more due to his ongoing ankle problems. He’s not Roger Clemens, people. I’m also not confident of Keith Foulk, even when he returns. I do like what I’ve seen of Manny Del Carmen; he was hitting 96 on the radar gun last night. I wouldn’t break the bank for Billy Wagner, but I would look around. I’d like to see Kevin Millar and Mark Bellhorn designated for assignment. Either way, neither guy will be back next year. Maybe I would package a deal for San Fran’s Jason Schmidt, minus their top prospects like Jon Papelbon. Anyway, either way, Theo pulled the plug on Nomar last year so the bet here is he'll do something before Sunday.

Monday, July 18, 2005

Million Dollar Baby

This movie is one in a million! How refreshing it was in this day and age of lousy movies and bad acting to finally watch an Academy Award movie (4 awards). How Clint didn’t win best actor is beyond me.

This is NOT a boxing movie; this is a movie about a man cultivating a relationship with a young woman in a manner that he had wished for with his own daughter, whom he has no relationship with at all. Clint Eastwood, Hillary Swank, and Morgan Freemen, another terrific actor, are wonderful in their roles.

Also, no controversy here either in relation to the end, which I won’t spoil, but it takes up all of the final 15 minutes. Enjoy this movie!

PS: Is Clint Eastwood getting even more brilliant in his old age or what!? Talk about ONLY doing class projects!

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Batman Begins

Well, as a follow-up to my previous entry, the ONLY redeeming part of the day was watching “Batman Begins” starring Christian Bale as Bruce Wayne/Batman, Liam Neeson as Ducard, and Michael Caine as Alfred the Butler; oh yes and Tom Cruise’s Scientology protégée, Katie Holmes.

I thought Christian Bale, who is a very good actor (see “American Psycho”) played an excellent Batman. And this story, unlike the Michael Keaton edition that to me was a gothic version of the TV show complete with stupid plotlines and tons of villains, was actually one solid plot/story-line that completely explains the origins of Batman and ties it in with a very cleverly written story that is complete in nature.

All-in-all, it was good entertainment and definitely a must-see movie.

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Who Can Afford A Trip To The Movies?

Now I know why I stay home and rent DVDs and re-watch my favorite movies: I can’t afford to go out!

I tried going with my fiancée to a movie on Sunday, but let me itemize my expenditures. First we drove an hour into Massachusetts from Rhode Island to have a brunch at SKY, a restaurant that advertises it’s brunches in the “Boston Magazine.” Lo and behold, no brunches ‘till Labor Day! What happened here?! This is a blog for another day! So far it’s $10 in gas. Because we were obviously still hungry, we then went to “La Roberts” in North Attleboro, MA for their version of a Sunday brunch. Terrorists should be forced to eat their food! $9.50 for two bites of a rubber omelet and a sip of ice tea. It would have been twice as much should my fiancée not have gone to the restroom. It gave me the opportunity to visit the buffet table and taste before she had the chance to do so. I stopped her on her way back! By now we were cutting it close to catch the 1:30 matinee so, off to the movies we go. General Cinemas in Attleboro, MA had a matinee cost for two people totaling $13.50! Does anybody remember when it used to be $3 a matinee ticket? Since we STILL wanted something to eat, we paid $3.50 for a small cup of Pepsi! This was outrageous! And $5.50 for 4 nacho chips and some processed cheese for a total of $9.00, and then came the popcorn, 1 large popcorn was $5.00, and I swear they didn’t layer the butter in the popcorn like I asked them to do! Remember when they popped their own?! And lastly, a small Icee for another $3.00 for a total cost of $8.00. Thank God the movie “Batman Begins” (also another blog) was a good movie.

By the time we came home from that dreadful day out for a free (we had gift certificates) buffet brunch and a day at the movies, we had spent a total of $50.

Moral of the story: STAY HOME! It’s cheaper, more comfortable, and simply better!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Live 8 – Concert for Africa

Twenty years ago, Bob Geldoff threw a bi-continental concert called Live Aid. All my memories of that day aren’t so clear anymore. What I do recall was that the day had some eventful performances ranging from The Who and Led Zeppelin to George Michael bringing down the house singing “Don’t Let the Sun Go Down On Me” and Freddie Mercury and Queen rocking Wembley Stadium. Did I mention Paul McCartney, Eric Clapton, Phil Collins, David Bowie, Tom Petty, and U2?! And how about the closing song in England of “Do They Know It’s Christmas Time at All.”

Now 20 years later we have Live 8, designed to continue the education and support of trying to end poverty in Africa by asking the major leaders of the world to work towards finding a solution.

As for the concert: the music and performances, in one word, for the most part, awful! First, and most importantly, MTV/VH1 did not allow you to see the complete performances! We were allowed to see a portion of a song before we were subjected to another shot of the young, punk VJ’s yapping away or another ad for poverty. The most awaited act was the reunion of Pink Floyd after 25 years. And what happened? During one of their most memorable songs, “Comfortably Numb,” MTV/VH1 cuts away and we are left with another shot of the VJ’s talking! Same thing happened with The Who and Stevie Wonder’s performances. At least 20 years ago we saw most of the whole sets performed to completion outside of the still obnoxious VJ’s. The only highlights were the couple of Pink Floyd songs we were able to view/hear and they sounded great, and that of George Michael joining Paul McCartney on The Beatles’ classic “Drive My Car.” Otherwise, it was a train wreck!

As for the political message, as sad and devastating as the poverty situation is in Africa, what about all the poor and homeless in our own country and the starving vets that line our streets in the good old USA?! You feed and take care of your own FIRST before you can help anybody else. The G8 have many concerns to worry about to focus only on just Africa ($40 billion in debt is already expected to be pardoned.) And how about an account of all the relief funds that have already been provided over decades, including the Live Aid $100 million dollars? How about all these celebs like Brad Pitt, Madonna, Cameron Diaz, Green Day and the Bono’s of the world put their own money where their mouths are and contribute heftily to the cause instead of boring us with mediocre performances and their giant egos and finger snapping every 3 seconds?

Enough, Mr. Geldoff!

Celts Draft Night Review

Tuesday night I was present first hand at the Sports Authority in Waltham, MA, as the Celts restocked themselves for the future in the 2005 NBA draft.

To recap, they’re future prayers were answered when they drafted 18 year old high school, Gerald Green, a 6'8" high flyer who was projected to be as drafted as high as 6th, but slid to their liking. Comparisons range from Tracy McGrady to Dominique Wilkins. If that’s the case, then the Celts have themselves a steal.

Their second pick was forward Ryan Gomes from Providence College. This kid seems mature for his age and is projected to make the team. Their final pick was Oriene Greene, a guard from Louisiana-Lafayette.

For some reason I’m having a good vibe on this Green kid. All indications are that he is the real deal. Time will tell. Gomes may develop into a solid starter opposite Al Jefferson down the line. For their summer team they added Vermont forward Taylor Coppenrath, who put up huge numbers in college. And I have to tell you I’m having a good vibe on him as well.

Now the big question is whether to deal Paul Pierce or not. Personally, I’m torn. The truth is they probably won’t get his value back, especially amidst reports that the Celts are concerned about his late night partying. I’d still see if I could get some veterans and picks back for him and then make a push to sign Ray Allen, or maybe a sign and trade. I think Antoine Walker won’t be back again and, quite honestly, that’s ok.

The future looks promising for this team and based upon how they move forward with Pierce, they could be quite exciting to watch next year.

And oh by the way, the food at the draft was terrific!

Friday, June 24, 2005

Seed of Chucky

This may be one of the stupidest movies ever made, period!

Nothing funny, nothing scary, just another movie storyline that ran out of gas after it’s original, if you want to call it original (anybody remember “Trilogy of Terror” with Karen Black?!)

This ranks right up there with “Jason Shops at Macy’s” or whatever it was called.

Save your money.

Thursday, June 23, 2005


Another new release in the same vein as all the other millenium horror movies; that is seizure-like effects, no drama, no horror, no plot, and no acting.

This movie is terrible, boring, slow and soooooooooo not worth renting! Stay away!

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

Barry’s Deli

This staple of the Waban community of Newton, MA has been a pleasurable experience for well over 30 years. I’m in my 40’s and I’ve been eating there since I was 12.

The chopped liver sandwich was tasty and sweet; the potato salad was whipped and very sweet, and the deli pickles were just wonderful. The baked ham and cheese sub was also packed with warm, generous helpings of ham. The environment was quiet so it was nice and relaxing. The only complaint was the couple of flies that wouldn’t leave us alone. But, once again, Barry’s Deli didn’t disappoint.

Monday, June 20, 2005

Frankenstein - The Hallmark Version

OK, hands up if you’re tired of another Mary Shelley version of “Frankenstein” where they humanize him. Well, this version is long, boring, and so ridiculous, you can’t help but laugh. In what other version can you see a crippled Frankenstein outrun an entire village, be attacked by an old woman with a broomstick, dance, cry, in need of companionship and have a “love me, Daddy” complex?!

If you wish to laugh, rent it, otherwise, toothaches are more enticing.

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

Coop de Ville

Well, what better way to follow up a blog on Food Channel’s most annoying host, Rachel Ray, than to actually eat at one of her suggested $40 a day restaurants; and that’s what we did on Sunday at Coop de Ville on Martha’s Vineyard.

This little seafood restaurant that resides off the water in Oak Bluffs was overpriced, with sub par seafood, and poor service. The benches we were seated at were uncomfortable with annoying music booming in our ears. The waitress didn’t realize the fried clam plate came with whole bellies, as I had to explain it to her, and she never brought me my Pepsi ‘till I asked a third time. And for clinchers, she charged me for two clam plates which I had to have her fix the bill.

As for the food, the clams had barely any bellies and were very average. The portions were small and instead of cole slaw, they gave a cheesy version of pasta salad. The fried oysters were burnt and the fish fillet sandwich was very bland. Did I mention the clam plate was not only small but it was $23!

A waste of time and money, and once again prooving that her's gets comped for free, she chooses the cheapie item on the menu for the TV viewers, and has no idea what she's doing. Please, Food Channel, I'm begging you, wise up to this fraud.

Friday, June 10, 2005

High Roller - The Stu Unger Story

This is another gem of a movie that went straight to DVD and flew under the radar in "The Assassination of Richard Nixon" vein.

Starring Soprano's co-star, Michael Imperioli, as the 3-time poker champ, Stu Unger, it chronicles his rise and fall. Michael, one of the most underated talents today, is terrific in the role. Most definately worth renting.

Thursday, June 09, 2005

Hatchet Man

Want a cut-up of a movie, no pun intended? This is a Showtime DVD production, if you wish to call it that. Basically, a wanna-be lawyer is working nights as a stripper hoping for a chance to get into law school while at the same time some schmuck in a mask is "hatcheting" up the strippers. Since the whole movie focuses on the strippers up close dancing, it should've been an episode of real sex instead. Anyways don't waste your money.

Tuesday, May 31, 2005

Red Sox/Yankees

Just as Red Sox Nation is about to commit suicide, what do they do? In 24 hours they drive home 24 runs against the Yanks, that's what they do! Much maligned, Edgar Reneteria, has like a 100 hits in two days, and the whole team wakes up. Oh yeah, and David Wells shuts down his old team.

Red Sox Nation, relax, you have over 4 months left.

Monday, May 23, 2005

Troy Brown Re-signs With Patriots

The Patriots announced that Troy Brown agreed to terms with the New England Patriots bringing him back for at least one more year. Has there ever been a Patriot more beloved by his organization than Troy Brown?! Even though his skills have diminished and there is an overload of wide receivers, nonetheless he is a winner and a leader in the words of coach Bill Belichick. He's the prototypical character guy.

Welcome back, Troy!

National Treasure

A new DVD release starring Mr. Personality, Nicholas Cage, as a national treasure hunter.

I do like Nic Cage as an actor but, he has been on an endless string of boring, stupid, mindless movies and this adds to the string. If you want a good Nicholas Cage film, go rent "Honeymoon in Vegas" or "Snake Eyes." Leave this one alone.

Thursday, May 19, 2005

The Blob Blog

Ok, ok. Here it is: a blog on "The Blob!" I'll preface this by saying I never saw the original cult classic starring Steve McQueen but, I did in fact enjoy this remake scifi thriller.

Kevin Dillon has the McQueen role and handles it quite nicely. Basically, a story about an alien-like creation by the US government that has gone amok absorbing everything in its path. I actually was entertained the whole way through, albeit the end seemed kind of rushed to it's conclusion. I recommend it as a rental. Why can't the Sci-fi channel show this movie vs. "Casper the Friendly Ghost?!"

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

Pierce for “?”

Well, now that the season is officially over for our beloved Celtics, it’s time to play GM with this team. As you know by now, all roads lead to the inquiry, “What can we get for Paul Pierce?”

Myself, I’d be inclined to trade him in the right deal. He is a terrific talent who has gotten a bit weirder with age and seems to dislike the leadership placed on him by being the captain of the team. You also have to ask yourself this question, “As constituted with Paul Pierce, can this team go any farther next year?” I say no. Therefore, here are a few possibilities that are approved by the NBA's collective bargaining agreement regarding contracts and the cap:
  1. Pierce to the Lakers for Kobe Bryant. This would be a biggie! But hear me out. Kobe is from the East Coast; Paul is from LA. Both teams will go no farther with these players. Both players are similar as 2 guards that can do it all. Maybe both just need a change of scenery. I think it would also make the NBA one interesting place next year if these guys swap coastlines. In addition, their salaries match up.
  2. Pierce to the Sixers along with Marcus Banks for Allen Iverson. Again, both teams going nowhere as constituted. The Celts would get a Red Auerbach favorite in Iverson, a tough leader, do it all point guard and, Philly would get some much needed scoring in Pierce.
  3. Pierce and Ricky Davis to Minnesota for Kevin Garnett. Minnesota is going nowhere and they’d have Pierce as a small forward and Davis as a two guard. They won’t resign Sprewell and they can move Sczerbiak for more size. As for Boston, how would you like Al Jefferson starting alongside Kevin Garnett next year? They can always sign a two guard like a Jimmy Jackson that can be a steady producer for them.
  4. A “sign and trade” with Seattle: Pierce for Ray Allen. Pierce has a better all around game, but Allen has it more together mentally and certainly can score.

Just some ideas I was kicking around as the summer season begins in the NBA. I say bring in Kobe and let’s start a new Celtic/Laker rivalry while we’re at it!

Monday, May 16, 2005


I have two words for you:




OK, SciFi will never have an original idea again, I'm convinced. Have you seen their promo for the 40-foot mummy?! With that said, the other night I did watch a real cheesy, campy, 50's throwback called "Decoys" which is about these beautiful coeds from another planet who come to a college to feast on cold air and young guys. The plot and dialogue are unbelievably stupid as is the end, which is quite predictable. But did it keep me watching for 2 hours albeit a million commercials? It did. And for those of you over 40 who remember "Creature Feature," there wasn't much difference in this sci-fi affair.

Thursday, May 12, 2005

The Assassination of Richard Nixon

This little chestnut flew under the radar screen when it was released in 2004.

It stars the terrific Sean Penn as a disillusioned man living in President Nixon's 1973-74 America. It’s the story of a man who is trying to get his life back together, but fails due to the system. This is “based” on a true story and watching Sean Penn’s pain is an intimate study in human emotion and the mental decline of an individual. It is very compelling and I highly recommend it.

Phantom Of The Opera

This new DVD release is based on the Andrew Lloyd Weber musical and I must say I was completely bored by the whole affair. First of all, maybe I’m the only who thinks this but, I just don’t see the originality in taking an all time classic, creepy, horror movie in the “Nosferatu” mold and scoring music onto it and calling it a musical. Watch Lon Chaney’s performance and tell me if this makes sense. I mean, what’s next, “The Werewolf The Musical?”

Secondly, the plot itself is rather lame and it ends on a very vague note. This isn’t “Chicago,” which to me scored big time in terms of originality and transferred well onto the big screen.

“Phantom” bored me and made me yearn for “The Creature from the Black Lagoon, the love story musical!” Stay away.

Wednesday, May 11, 2005

Celtic 2004-2005 Roster Review

Tony Allen-Maybe I'm the only one who sees a poor man's Ron Artest in this guy. He’s a very athletic guy who needs to hone his game. Could be trade bait this off-season.

Marcus Banks-Well the little guy finally showed me something in the playoffs. He can defend and he can move. What he doesn’t do is make smart decisions with the ball. He may be your starter next year and he just as easily could be traded.

Mark Blount-I don’t care what Danny Ainge says, this guy took the big money and went south. By playoff time he was on the bench permanently. He makes the Statue of Liberty appear mobile. They'll try to trade him but with his big salary, not likely.

Ricky Davis-This guy was arguably their most consistent player last year. Was terrific off the bench and won many a game for them. At 25 and low salary, he's a steal for them and also makes good trade bait. Personally, I hope he's back.

Al Jefferson- Here is the man they will build around. He’s their best low post player since McHale and Maxwell and he’s only 20. Did I mention he has a great attitude and was truly terrific against Indian? His presence will almost undoubtedly spell the real end for Toine here.

Raef Lafrentz- He finally stayed healthy and gave the Celts some key minutes. More of a bench guy than a starter, he too has an untradeable contract.

Gary Payton-He gave the Celts a veteran presence all year long but come playoff time, he looked like Dennis Johnson at the end. He was someone who came in and slowed the game down to a standstill. He’s a free agent who needs to move on.

Kendrick Perkins- This youngster showed something his second year. To me, a millennium version of Greg Kite at best but we'll know more this year.

Paul Pierce-One of the most talented guys in the league hands down. As Bob Ryan of “The Boston Globe” said, “Now, what about Pierce? He is the team's most skilled offensive player, he is perhaps the best rebounding two guard in the league, and he can do things no one else on the team can do. But he has gotten just plain weird. Can anyone get to him to see just what his problem is?He started the season in a funk and he ended it with that ludicrous display in Game 6 and a dud of a Game 7. How far can a team go if he is its best player? That's a very serious question?" All I can add is what I said yesterday, maybe time to shake up the stars; Pierce for Kobe?

Justin Reed- A bench player at best this year maybe he'll see more time next year. Really an incomplete.

Antoine Walker- Well the second coming of Toine brought them a more composed Paul Pierce, a first place finish, and some serious interest. As Bob Ryan also notes, "All his strengths and liabilities were on display in this series. He remains a curiously unathletic player whose lift, never great, almost completely has disappeared at age 28. Against most teams, he is at the offensive mercy of his 3-pointer and his funky in-between game. He is still a good rebounder and still should be an effective passer. Then there's the whole locker room lightning rod business I now realize has some merit. But what is the monetary worth of this package? Most people say $6 million annually, tops. It will be interesting to see if Antoine is one of those people." Me thinks we have seen the last of Walker, again.

Delonte West-As Peter May says, "The Celtics do really love this kid. He is nerveless on the floor and that is big for a point guard, not to mention a rookie. He also has a decent outside shot and, for his size, is an excellent rebounder. He had a lot of big moments for the team and you have to think he's in the plans for a lot more playing time next season." I think we are going to see much more of Delonte West next year. It wouldn’t surprise me if he were starting at point guard next year. He and Jefferson will be a big part of their future plans.

Tuesday, May 10, 2005

Running For Cover

Yesterday's front page news in Boston and world wide is on how the medical industry is running for cover after the CDC and other complete research studies have concluded that overweight to moderately obese people actually seem to live slightly longer than lean-bodied people. That is almost verbatim. And if you’ve compared the figures that were originally put out about being overweight and the deaths resulting from it, to the revised figures now, it’s staggering the misinformation that was originally put out there.

As I said before in the “Why Overweight IS In” post, with an awful economy, $3 a gallon gas, no jobs, and the threats of terrorism, people stay home most often and attempt to enjoy their lives through food, alcohol, movies, sports, and television. That’s the world we live in today. That’s why 8-10 Americans are overweight despite the "skinny propaganda" that their particular culture is clinging too.

Oh by the way, did I mention the lawsuits facing the Atkins estate for people dying on his diet? Or the fact that hospitals and insurance companies won’t cover stomach stapling procedures any longer because 1 in 4 die and the procedure is not foolproof even if you survive it? Or that most football players were classified as obese yet, they are arguably the best athletes on the planet?

Well now the medical truth, which has been there all along, is really front-page news. Overweight people live longer than lean bodied people. Enjoy!

Anchorman – The Legend of Ron Burgundy

Will Ferrell stars in this very clever spoof that he wrote satirizing the “anchor world” of the 1970's. Costarring Christina Applegate and a very funny supporting cast, this movie from beginning to end, even through the credits and outtakes, keeps you laughing.

You may need to be over 40 to really get it, but it’s 2 hours of unadulterated fun. Rent it.

Monday, May 09, 2005

Celts Routed In Game 7

The Celts bowed out in game 7 at home to Indiana in a rout, losing by 27 points. Being a Celtic fan since the mid 70's, it is quite a disappointment to see the millennium edition of the Celtics bow out so pathetically. This is what will ALWAYS separate the superstars of yesterday like Bird and McHale and Russell from the wannabes of today like Pierce and Walker. Game 7 at home, where you are the better team, no excuse for losing by 27 points.

As for next year, personally I think the guy to build around is 20 year old Al Jefferson who may be the best true low post player they’ve had since Kevin McHale and Cedric Maxwell; this kid has it all together and will be a star within 3 years. On Pierce, I’m not sure whether they should move him or not. He truly is a gifted player and scorer but, as a veteran captain of this team, he just doesn’t act like a mature player and instead he’s acting out, pouting and having an attitude. If you move him, you NEED a superstar back, period. Pierce to the Lakers for Kobe? Just throwing that out there. As for Walker, it was his presence that made Pierce a better player and elevated the Celts into the playoffs. And yes, he won game 6 in overtime for them. But once again, for the most part, he did what he seems to do in every playoff game, choke under pressure. I may keep him anyways if at the right price. As for the rest of the crew, I’d let Gary Payton walk and if at all possible, I’d trade Mark Blount to ANYONE that will take his huge contract and “laissez faire” approach towards basketball. The rest of the guys are the young ones they will build around like Delonte West and Marcus Banks. And kudos to the job Doc Rivers did this year getting the youngsters and veterans to blend together. However, all in all, unless the "star" core of this team is reconfigured via trade, this team will not go any farther next year as constituted.

Friday, May 06, 2005

Celts Win Game 6 In OT

"This has been a Celtics playoff series like no other, and that is the understatement of the new millennium. We had enough crazy stuff go on in Games 1-5, what with the blowouts and the responses and road victories and all, but last night we entered a hoop twilight zone in a game that featured the single most unforgivable, untimely, stupid, and flat-out selfish on-court act in the history of the Celtics."

What can I say? When you count the Celts out, they win! It’s as simple as that.

This has been a very entertaining series between the young upstart Celts and the wily Pacers. Each team has won 2 of its 3 games in the opponent’s arena, and keeping to form, the Celts hung on for an overtime 92-89 win in Indiana.

Again, versus re-describing the game, here are some observations from the couch:

Pierce had a great game, but talk about stupid thinking. As Bill Parcells would say, taking a flagrant foul and being ejected at the end of the game became about him, and not the team. He could’ve wrapped up the game and instead allowed Indiana to tie it and send it into overtime without his services. This is what separates the Birds and Magics from these starts of today. Otherwise, it was a great game.

Antoine Walker can’t make a layup but hits the craziest shots and in fact won it for them in overtime.

And Al Jefferson is going to be a huge star in this league. He had a monster game for a kid out of high school. He had 11 points and 14 rebounds in 29 minutes. When he fills out and becomes a man, you may be looking at the next Karl Malone.

And finally, if they want to win a home game and win the series, they need to maintain the same defensive tenacity they did last night, no ifs ands or buts. All in all, wither way, a most entertaining series.

Thursday, May 05, 2005

Hemenway’s Seafood Grill & Oyster Bar

Though I am provincial about my Massachusetts seafood and fried clams, there is a place that I consider to be Rhode Island’s finest seafood restaurant, Hemenways. Located in the heart of downtown Providence, this establishment is a classy place with a nice view of the river along with a nicely decorated interior. The service is impeccable and the food is outstanding.

We started with the scallops with scallions wrapped in bacon served with an Asian coleslaw and a ginger dipping sauce. The bacon was crisp and the scallops were as soft as butter and melted right in our mouths. Actually, I should say we started with a heaping plate of hot rolls and whipped butter followed by the appetizer treat. For our main luncheon courses my companion had the fried fish sandwich, fried to perfection on a sweet roll with lettuce and tomato, along with a generous portion of french fries. As for me, Mr. Seafood Snob Extraordinaire, of course I had my fried whole clams, french fries and coleslaw. And yes, the clams were very, very good. Not the best I’ve ever had, but very good. They had big bellies which is what I live for and they were nice and soft. There was a nice helping of fries and coleslaw. If I had any complaint about them, maybe they were a tad sandy, which can happen as it is still off-season for fried clams. The other downside is parking outside can be cumbersome as there is limited availability. But other than that, it is a wonderful restaurant all the way around which I highly recommend.

Wednesday, May 04, 2005

Celts Lose Home Advantage

Last night the Celts laid another egg at home to Indiana losing 90-85 to the Ron Artest-less Pacers. After regaining home advantage with a convincing win in game 4 in Indiana, once again they came out flat and played catch up all night.

Just a few observations:
Reacquiring Antoine Walker during the year rejuvenated this team and Pierce, but he continues to never step up big in playoff games dating all the way back to the eggs he laid going up against Kenyon Martin.

Gary Payton is done, period. It’s painful watching this guy crawl the ball up the floor. It’s time to hand it over to Banks or Delonte West. The 80's Celtics acquired DJ after they had no guard to defend Andrew Toney. This team lacks leadership and the only guy that comes to mind is Jason Kidd, to me. And imagine this team with a low post player. Till these things happen: same story - different year with this roster.

Tuesday, May 03, 2005

The Woodsman

I strongly suggest renting this new DVD release starring Kevin Bacon as a convicted and paroled pedophile trying to battle his demons and get his life back together. This is not your typical movie and was not a commercial hit; it only was a hit with critics who rightly thought he deserved an Oscar nomination for his role. Kyra Sedgwick, his real-life wife, costars in this hauntingly good performance. Being a sensitive topic, it’s not a movie that the public will embrace. But if anyone can make you feel pain and actually feel in general for a sex offender who is battling his disease, it’s Kevin Bacon - one of the best actors around today. Kudos to him for expanding his acting capabilities and taking a controversial and commercially flop of a role, which I assume he knew it wouldn’t be a hit with the public.

Keep an open mind and enjoy his performance and this movie.

Friday, April 29, 2005

Friday Boston Tidbits

Antoine Walker's suspension for Saturday night's game vs. Pacers could be the final blow to the Celtics' chances of beating Indiana and winning the series. His second technical foul was plain stupid for a seasoned veteran and, after having another bad playoff game, it's like things never change with him.

Bill Belichick's signing of local hero, Doug Flutie, as Tom Brady's backup for next year, is a win-win proposition for Doug, the fans and the Patriots. And if things go according to plan, he won't play once next year.

Thursday, April 28, 2005

Celts-Pacers Observations

As the Celtics head back to Indiana for game 3 of their best of 7 series, all tied at 1, I couldn’t let it go by without a few observations from game 2.

Gary Payton reminded me of Dennis Johnson at the end of his career. Every time he was in the game he slowed the pace down to a crawl. Time for Marcus Banks and Delonte West to see more time.

As for Mark Blount; this guy got the big contract and literally has gone to sleep all year. Talk about someone just wasting space on the court. I say he stays out and Lafrenz or even Kendrick Perkins play center, at least they have a pulse.

Where was Al Jefferson in the second half? He’s arguably their best low post player and he didn’t see any time in the second half. Inexcusable!

And finally, watching Paul Pierce and Antoine Walker together as the rest of the team stood around and watched also, reminded me of the Celtic team of a few years back with these guys, which is a 2 on 5.

If the Celtics don’t get their act together from the coaching staff on down, they will lose this series very quickly to Indiana.

Wednesday, April 27, 2005


Every new release that I force myself to rent becomes harder and harder to sit through. So, when I watched “Sideways” I couldn’t have been more pleasantly surprised.

It’s about two middle-aged guys, Paul Giamatti (a terrific and underrated actor), and Thomas Hayden Church, spending a week in wine country before Church gets married. While it does start off on the slower side, it turns into both of them experiencing a re-examination of their current lives that is loaded with excellent dialogue and some very funny moments.

This film is definitely worth watching. You will enjoy this underrated movie. Was it worth the Oscar nominations it received? Probably not. But then again, compared to “Saw,” “The Village,” and “The Forgotten,” it is an academy award winner. A strong thumbs up from me.

Tuesday, April 26, 2005

Where There’s a Will…There’s a Relative

Want a cute comedy DVD rental to fill your rainy Saturday? Rent “Greedy,” a 1994 comedy starring Michael J. Fox, Kirk Douglas, and Phil Hartman.

In a nutshell, Kirk Douglas plays this old rich man who entertains his money- grubbing, kiss-ass relatives led by Phil Hartman (I miss him). Michael J. Fox shows up and he ends up being roped into the money as well, competing against Kirk's young, sexy assistant, Olivia d'Abo. There are enough twists and turns to keep you laughing all the way through with good clean fun. Don’t get too greedy finding ponderous new releases; rent “Greedy” and enjoy yourself for two hours.

Monday, April 25, 2005

In Bill I Trust

When will local scribes ever learn to trust the greatest coach in NFL history - winner of three Super Bowls?

After completing the 2005 NFL draft, once again, Coach Belichick took a beating in the local press for drafting offensive guard/tackle, Logan Mankins out of Fresno State. Why? Because pigskin prognosticators had him going in the third round, but at least I know better.

As one football executive said to a local radio show here in Boston before the pick; "When the Patriots select number 32 in the first round you can be sure of two things. One, you've never heard of the guy and two, he'll be a huge contributor within 2 years." And that’s how I feel.

They needed depth on the front line with the departure of Joe Andruzzi, and Stephen Neal and Tom Ashworth entering the final year of their contracts. By drafting Mankins they picked up insurance on the line, a tenacious and "mean" lineman with great technique. And here’s the caveat: his college coach, Pat Hill, was Belichick’s line coach at Cleveland. It’s whom you know. And Belichick’s other college source, Coach Saban of LSU, is now running the Dolphins. I think it’s a win-win pick. Here’s Bill on his first selection, Logan Mankins: "He has played left tackle at Fresno. He played guard at the Senior Bowl. He definitely has some position flexibility. He is a smart guy that has been in a really good program. He has good fundamentals. He is a good technique player. He is pretty tough and that will give him some different options. We will see how it all works out for him." As for the other picks, they are all flexible athletes that Coach Belichick will give long looks too.

And, planning ahead to the 2006 draft, which is considered much deeper in talent than this year’s draft, Bill wheeled and dealed some of his picks this year and ended up accumulating 3 extra picks for next year. Again, when will people just go with what Coach Belichick does?

I don’t know about you, but three Super Bowls later, when Bill says this is the pick, then who am I to argue? In Bill I trust!

Tuesday, April 19, 2005

Cheng Du Can Do

Who doesn't know someone that will always profess that they know a place that serves the best Chinese food?! I hear the same thing with clams as well and you know, 9 out of 10 times the places they suggest usually range from nothing special to major letdown to downright awful. Okay, well here I go: if you're looking for a semi out of the way place that just makes Chinese food dishes and appetizers the way they should be made, then try Cheng Du in the heart of downtown Stoughton, MA.

It had been years since I ate in the restaurant with my better half and Saturday night we decided to do a large take-out order. Once again they delivered with outstanding Chinese cuisine. The fried chicken wings were crisp and tasty and a good size, not the pigeon size wings most places offer up (have you checked Rhode Island's Chinese food restaurants? You can see the pigeons from your seat). The fried shrimp had a light batter and were just right. The fried Szechwan dumplings were soft and melted in our mouths. The crab rangoons were generously filled with cream cheese and were crispy on the outside. And the shrimp fried rice had lots of nice huge pieces of shrimp in it, unlike most places where you have to play "Where's Waldo" with your shrimp. We were so full and content that we never even got to their specialty dishes that adorn their menu. And if you eat inside it still has a nice, quiet atmosphere minus the normal cheesiness of fish tanks and the like.

So if you are craving Chinese food on a Saturday night as most couples do, I suggest you take a visit to Cheng Du.

Monday, April 18, 2005

The Corner Deli, Stoughton, MA

Want a nice deli that is clean, has great service, and serves up some great Jewish cuisine? Well then you couldn’t do better than “The Corner Deli” located at 593 Washington Street in Stoughton, MA. This cozy little place offers up a complete menu of traditional Jewish cuisine; everything ranging from standard breakfast, lunch and dinner to matzahball soups, knishes, latkes, and blintzes.

I had two fried eggs with a healthy portion of sausages and hash browns with a bagel with cream cheese on the side and orange juice, all made to perfection. My partner had the Challah french toast, which was to die for, also quite the portion. As it was, we couldn’t eat it all. I was so tempted to wait around for lunch so I could go back in and get a chopped liver sandwich!

All in all it was a most pleasant experience. So, if you happen to be craving good Jewish cuisine in a nice, pleasant atmosphere, I strongly suggest “The Corner Deli.” I guarantee you’ll also want to stay for lunch!

The Chateau, Norwood, MA

Sometimes nothing beats an old pair of shoes. Well the same thing applies to a good, trustworthy restaurant where you know you can always go for a nice meal. For me, that place is “The Chateau,” a family owned (Nocera) restaurant. I like the Norwood location personally, as they do have 3 other locations. Saturday I took my other half there for the luncheon specials and for the most part we were not disappointed.

I had the fried clams which were fabulous though are still considered out of season. They had the large sweet clam bellies, my ultimate favorite, and I am a connoisseur of clam bellies. As a matter of fact, short of the Cape and "Cookes" for inland restaurants closer to Boston, they may have the best fried clams around. They are certainly better than “Legals,” the most overrated and overpriced tourist trap in Massachusetts. And they are a million times better than “Kelley's” on Revere Beach, yet another overrated, overpriced, shrinking portioned restaurant that had it's heyday like 30 years ago before clam belly fans discovered that farm raised clams with corn meal bellies are not that good. I find it funny that Rachel Ray, the self proclaimed queen of the “Food Network” and of the imaginary 30 Minute Meals, visited Massachusetts and went to “Kelley’s”, where she proclaimed it the best fried clams and seafood. One more reason to note for the Food Network's audience that she is such a fraud. How would she know what are the best clams in Massachusetts?! She asks someone if they know of any place and someone sends her to “Kelley's.” What a joke! How about all of Cape Cod?! Even the tiniest of clam shacks down there blows “Kelley's” away. The order came with a nice helping of fries and sweet, creamy coleslaw for sides. And lest I forget their homemade bread served first was fresh and soft. As for my other half, she had the fried haddock sandwich, which was a large piece of haddock, delicately fried with fresh lettuce and tomato on a bun. Her plate came with nice lightly battered onion rings. Her sandwich was quite packed and both of our meals, for luncheon specials, were quite filling and satisfying.

It’s too bad it couldn’t have ended on that note. With her last bite, my dinner companion noticed a fairly long hair buried deep into the fish batter; not what one wants to see! And the luncheon price on the menu for the clams was $13.99, but when the bill came, they were listed as $15.29. When I mentioned that to the waiter he apologized for not telling me sooner that they were a seasonal price. It would make sense to change the menu listing it as “seasonal” vs. a fixed price. Both of these moments made it a very disappointing ending to what was a great meal.

In conclusion, I'll give them the benefit of the doubt as they do always deliver, but more moments like that from them again and I may need to find a new pair of shoes.

The Amityville Horror (2005)

Not too much to say on this review, boys and girls. Quite honestly, I thought the original movie was awful and completely overrated, and this remake is even worse! No frills, no thrills, nothing to sustain any interest. It’s the one-millionth haunted house movie, and it’s about the worst one. The only thing worse was the “so-called” acting. It was the first movie my partner and I have ever walked out of. So, for the $14 admission (remember when matinees were $2?), and the $15 for 2 popcorns and a Pepsi, you could’ve taken your loved one out for a nice lunch. Stay away from this horror.

Wednesday, April 13, 2005

A New York Experience In Brookline, MA

Since I have never been to one, my fiancée has been promising for a while to take me to an authentic Jewish deli. He's mentioned a deli located in Brookline, MA, B&D Deli, located at Washington Square. We finally made plans to head on out there as I am beyond curious and need to know what the rave is all about. Of course, as luck would have it, it's one of the rainiest days this season, but that didn't stop us from taking the hour-long trip to indulge on these deli fares for brunch.

We arrived just in the nick of time as the hustling and bustling ensued with the flocking of what seemed to be longtime regulars and fans of this eatery. I couldn't believe how long the line behind us had grown in a matter of minutes with eager and hungry patrons with every seat in the house occupied. Our wait was minimal because of my fiancées impeccable timing. A table for two had just become available and we were seated immediately. The environment was casual and the décor modest, as I had expected of a deli.

Even though the place was hopping, the waiter made his way to our table quickly leaving behind a generous and varied menu with affordable prices. While I had no idea of what I fancied, I was comfortable choosing a selection because my companion was well aware and familiar with the offerings and recommended I try one of his favorites, the hot pastrami sandwich. He ordered the stuffed blintzes and potato latkes (crepes and pancakes). As usual, we always share our entrees, a benefit of being a couple.

I was quite surprised to see our order filled so quickly and was completely in awe when I saw the size of my hot pastrami sandwich! Humongous! Completely stuffed! I was almost embarrassed to be seen with it! The pastrami was hot and sweet and soft. The bulkie roll was fresh and soft. Excellent! It came along with a side order of potato salad and a kosher pickle, both to die for! The blintzes were large as well, a very generous portion, stuffed with a delicious sweet, creamy cheese and completely topped with fresh warm strawberries! Scrumptious! And the potato latke was beyond a treat; crunchy on the outside and soft inside. Perfect!

Of course, we couldn't eat it all and had no room for desert. Too bad, perhaps another time I can tap into it. We did end up purchasing a few items to go such as their chopped liver, which was out of this world, potato latkes and blintzes that were of the same quality and portion as we had earlier. The only disappointment was they had run out of Challah, which I was told is an egg-rich, yeast-leavened, braided bread traditionally eaten on Sabbath and holidays. My fiancée was steadfast on me trying Challah and ended up going to a local bakery and purchased a loaf and I have to say it was one of the best breads I have ever had!

So if you have the desire to enjoy an authentic Jewish cuisine along with the authentic New York style deli atmosphere, and oh by the way, have a most satisfying meal, then I highly recommend paying a visit to Brookline's B&D Deli. It'll be worth the trip.

Tuesday, April 12, 2005

Why Overweight IS In

You do realize, what's left of you in skinny nation, that you are losing the battle; not of the bulge but to society's acceptance of the bulge. I'm tired of what's left of skinny nation trying to shove low carbs and revealing outfits on television and current advertising. Sorry guys, it isn't happening any more. Let's look at the facts and statistics.

Eight out of ten Americans are anywhere from overweight to obese. That's a fact. Why??? How about we live in a decaying world filled with disease, poverty, drugs, war, and constant threats of terrorism. And if you can't leave your home for fear of being killed, or if you can but you can't afford $40 to take your loved one to a less than good movie, then the next best and safest thing to do is stay home and enjoy one of life's most wonderful and simplest pleasures: EATING! And even the poorest of the poor manage to do that in these times.

Do you know that the "New England Journal of Medicine" along with some big studies in Europe have determined that 4 out of 5 people over the age of 70 who are still alive are those people that are overweight versus being underweight? They are the healthier of the people in nursing homes as well. Again, why? Because if they do become ill, they have more body mass to work with in terms of fighting illness, disease, and cancer. Think about that. Sure, there are other side effects such as potential high blood pressure and diabetes, both things that can be controlled with medication. But in total, being heavier allows you to actually live longer and survive more illnesses. Go to any nursing home and the healthy ones are all either overweight to obese.

And by the way, if you smoke and drink to also have a distraction from the world we live in, the unemployment and eventual $3 a gallon gas prices, then does it matter if you're skinny? In the end, when your time is up, it's up! Any of those elements will kill you, right?! Does anyone remember the famous marathoner, Jim Fixx, who in the 70's made a living from running marathons, and is credited with starting the fitness craze in America and then started doing commercials running for Visa cards? What happened to him? He died while running in 1984!!!

And as for the appeal of the "extra weight," of course to each his own, but, let's face it, the most accepted sex symbol of the 20th Century and arguably of all time was Marilyn Monroe, who was an admitted size 20 when the corset was off! Study the portraits hanging in the museums of France and Italy, they're all of heavyset women who were considered the beauties of their day. Look at women from even earlier in the 20th Century, all shapely and bbw's in stature. Only in the 1960's with the onset of the drug culture and models like Twiggy, skinny began its run on American society. But those days are over people. Women today are having injections into their derrieres to make them look bigger. And again, just go into any restaurant or store at lunch time during a business day, or on any weekend in your local mall, 80% of the girls and women you see today are anywhere from overweight to obese; the good looking ones being bbws, big beautiful women. And, oh by the way, even 80% of all men in this country today are anywhere from overweight to obese. A recent study concluded that most professional football players, supposed athletes, are overweight!

So, as my grandmother would say, "live and let live and get used to the world we live in today." One last note, even according to the NY Times Best Seller, "The Fat Fallacy," it has been scientifically proven that heavier set people will dominate the population with their longevity.

So good-bye Twiggy, and hello Marilyn!