* I thought the Democratic National Convention was mostly a hit. Bill Clinton’s speech on Wednesday night was a grand slam. I watched more of the DNC than I did the Republican National Convention in Tampa the week before.
* More than anything, I just want a cooperative nature to exist in the United States. I would like Republicans and Democrats to work together to improve America and put aside their differences, at least as much as they can. I get it that there are different visions for how to make America the best it can be. But I also remember when politicians from the two parties were friendly toward one another and were not afraid to cross the aisle to attempt to cut a deal. Even a surly guy like me would try to get along with the other side if I were in Congress. Honest, I would.
* One final political note, the whole process makes me sad. We’re at a strange place in American history, I believe. There are no outward signs that either party wants to extend an olive branch. Meanwhile, it’s us – you and me – who suffers. There’s a feeling of helplessness out here in the country, that no matter who we elect things are not going to get better.
* OK, on to other things . . . what a big weekend in sports. College football gets more interesting by the week, the major league pennant races are on fire and the NFL opens for business with a full slate of Sunday games and a Monday night double-header. (Yes, I know the season started Wednesday night. That’s another thing politicians could fix; why does the NFL open on a Wednesday night?)
* My 40th high school reunion is next year. Wow, that just hit me. Forty. Years. More than 2,100 weeks. My recollections of high school are hazy, to say the least. I only remember flashes. I don’t remember learning anything, really. I don’t remember being particularly excited by being in high school. I remember some of my baseball games, barely. But mostly it’s a blur. (Editor’s note: Please don’t let your high school-age youngsters read this).
* I don’t remember much about college, either. By the way. Except I have vivid memories of a philosophy class I took on a whim at Wichita State that turned out to be probably the most interesting class I have ever been in. I loved the debates in that class. I’ll never forget the major thing I took out of the philosophy class – it’s that the greater good has to be served in difficult decisions. Now, defining the greater good is usually not easy.
* Another epiphany I’ve recently had is that I’m addicted to Facebook. Not to Twitter, for whatever reason, even though many of my friends tell me they’re on Twitter more often than they’re on Facebook. No, Facebook is my true love and my friends there are my most loyal friends. Wow. Really? I’m having some issues.
* Loving me some Baltimore Orioles. Do you realize it has been 15 years since the Orioles have had a better-than-.500 season? In 1997, the O’s were 98-64. With just less than four weeks remaining in the 2012 season, Baltimore is 77-60 and tied with the New York Yankees atop the American League East. The Orioles won Game 1 of a four-game series with New York on Thursday night at Camden Yards. And I watched with interest.
* Baltimore’s best players are Matt Wieters, Adam Jones, Nick Markakis, Mark Reynods, J.J. Hardy and Chris Davis. Their best pitchers are Wei-Yen Chen, Jason Hammel, Miguel Gonzalez, Pedro Strop, Chris Tillman, Troy Patton, Darren O’Day and Jim Johnson. How many of them have you heard of? Honest now. I follow baseball closely and I’ve heard of maybe half.
* My son gets married six weeks from Saturday. It’s all surreal to me. I’m sure I’ll float through the ceremony. I can’t wait.
* I’m going to the Kansas State Fair next Friday night for the Heart concert. We saw Heart two years ago at the Fair and had a brief encounter with Nancy Wilson on the infield of the raceway behind the stage, which is where the Heart buses parked before the show. Nancy’s assistant was playing with Wilson’s dog and the dog came over to our area to see what was going on. Nancy approached us and said she hoped the dog wasn’t being a bother. To which I replied: “N-n-n-o, N-a-a-a-n-n-n-c-c-y. It’s, it’s, um, yeah, it’s, well, yeah,” or something like that.
* I’m looking forward to the Kansas State-Miami game tomorrow morning in Manhattan. It’s always fun to be inside the atmosphere and I’m looking forward to the progress being made with the renovation of Bill Snyder Family Stadium. I’m still not quite sure about the “Family,” part of that but hey, it’s not my call. I will tell you this, however: If somebody ever wants to name something after me, my family is not going to get equal billing. No sir.
* I can’t believe I started this blog by mentioning politics. But I’m OK with it. I love politics; I’m just having a little problem with politicians. I’m reading and watching everything I can get my eyes and ears on leading up to the presidential election in November. That’s something I do for every presidential election. I attempt to grasp the issues, although the way both sides talk around the issues it is becoming more difficult to know what is true and what is fabricated.
* It’s not easy getting an unbiased viewpoint in this social media-driven age, either. So many of the writers and bloggers have an agenda. I don’t want agenda, I want facts. And I want instructive and intelligent analysis. The best source I’ve found for that is “The New York Times.” Yes, I read the Times online. And I wish you could sense how smug I feel when I acknowledge that.
* Does Kansas beat Rice? The Jayhawks should. I think. But as trained as my eye is supposed to be, I just couldn’t tell much about KU during its win over South Dakota State last week. The running game was impressive, but it was against an inferior opponent that the Jayhawks beat by only two touchdowns. Pick KU to cover the 10-point spread, I guess. But be wary.
* Where is the Chiefs excitement? It feels to me like another lackluster preseason has led Chiefs fans to take a wait-and-see approach as KC prepares to meet Atlanta on Sunday inside Arrowhead Stadium. On radio this morning, I picked the Falcons because I think that team is being undervalued and has a chance to be an NFL playoff team. I’m sticking with that pick, although I think the Chiefs could win.
* Thanks for reading. I enjoy writing the Friday musings because they’re all over the place. My mind jumps to a thousand different places in a very short amount of time, so stream-of-consciousness suits me. Have a great weekend and I’ll touch base tomorrow from Kansas State.