December 2008 Archives

Brett Favre and Chad Pennington Suck

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Twice since the Patriots won their first Super Bowl, they have missed the playoffs.

Both times, it's because the Patriots were in a tie for the best record in the AFC East, but lost the tiebreaker when Brett Favre lost to Chad Pennington on the final day of the season, giving Pennington's team the division title instead.

On December 29, 2002, Favre's Packers made too many mistakes and wound up losing to Pennington's Jets. The Pats and Dolphins and Jets tied for first, but Pennington and the Jets won the tiebreakers, and won the AFC East title. The Patriots and Dolphins stayed home.

On December 28, 2008, Favre's Jets made too many mistakes and wound up losing to Pennington's Dolphins. The Pats and Dolphins tied for first, but Pennington and the Dolphins won the tiebreakers, and won the AFC East title. The Patriots stayed home.

So Patriots fans forever will hate Brett Favre. And it's not because he beat the Pats in Super Bowl XXXI in 1997. No, he won that one straight up, with a little help from Desmond Howard. It's because he let Chadley Pennington win twice, and in doing so kept us out of the playoffs twice.

In 2002, the 12-3 Packers had no business losing to the 8-7 Jets, but on the other hand, the 9-7 Patriots, with a battered defense that couldn't stop the run, didn't have much to complain about in not going to the playoffs.

In 2008, the Jets were rolling, but they just ... stopped. They couldn't even beat the Niners or Seahawks. But playing for a potential playoff spot, I figured they would finally pull it together and win the last game. They didn't. And the Patriots became only the second 11-5 team in history to not make the playoffs.

I don't know what can, or should, be done about it. It's terrible to have an 11-5 team sit home for the playoffs. It's not good for the league. But I can think of no solution to the problem.

So I'll just hate Pennington and Favre instead.

My Guitar Game Songs

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I can't keep track of what songs I have for Guitar Hero and Rock Band, so I made a web page to keep track of which songs I have for which games. The script that generates the page has a MySQL backend.

Boston on a Roll

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The currently playing three pro Boston teams (Celtics, Bruins, Patriots) are a combined 21-1 in December. Going back to November, 47-7 (each team with two losses in the month, counting an NHL "overtime loss" as a loss for purposes here).

The last three losses are the Bruins at Washington on December 10, Patriots vs. Pittsburgh on November 30, and Bruins at Buffalo on November 26.

The three losses before that happened to all three teams in three consecutive days: the Patriots lost to the Jets on a Thursday night at home on November 13; the next night the Celtics fell at home to Denver; and the next day the Bruins lost in overtime to the Rangers.

Since that horrible weekend, the Bruins have been 14-2, the Patriots 4-1, and the Celtics 18-0, for a combined 36-3.

It's a good time to be a Boston fan. Merry Christmas!

Bonus trivia: if the Patriots and Dolphins win next week, the Patriots will become only the second 11-5 team in NFL history to not make the playoffs.

Also, as good as 11-5 is, after a 16-0 season in 2007, who woulda guessed that the Red Sox (second best team in the AL), Celtics (best team in the NBA), and Bruins (second best team in the NHL) would all be better than the Patriots?

The great 80s song by Stephen Colbert and the Colberts. I am playing bass and singing on Expert in Rock Band 2. I got 100% on the bass. Maybe he'll hire me for his next tour.

I created a "Stephen" character to sing lead for me. He looks a lot like the real Stephen does in the original video, except here he's shirtless. Wooo.

(OK, it's not a Christmas song, but I couldn't resist.)

This is the Longest Concert Evar, starring Pudge. Send requests to, or post them here.

LCE062 Silent Night

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Silent Night. By request.

This is the Longest Concert Evar, starring Pudge. Send requests to, or post them here.

LCE061 Away in a Manger

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Away in a Manger. By request.

This is the Longest Concert Evar, starring Pudge. Send requests to, or post them here.

Barack Obama was elected President today.

Not one word on the home page, though MSNBC and Fox News buried it on their home pages. Odd. You'd think the election of the President would be a big deal worth more than four column inches.

Although, while it is a fact that Obama was elected President today, MSNBC incorrectly claims It's official. It does not become official until the vote is certified in Congress on January 6.

Mike Hope Wins Recount

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Republican challenger Mike Hope, in his third try at Representative for the 44th Legislative District, has emerged victorious in the initial count, and now in the mandatory hand recount.

Representative-elect Hope won the first vote over incumbent Democrat Liz Loomis (who had been appointed to fill Sheriff John Lovick's seat) by 118, with 104 write-ins, out of 68,860 votes counted. He has won the recount by 138, with 63 write-ins, out of 68,897 votes.

LCE060 Christmas Time is Here

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Vince Guaraldi's classic from "A Charlie Brown Christmas."

Sung as a chipmunk.

This is the Longest Concert Evar, starring Pudge. Send requests to, or post them here.

Until last year, the law in Washington disallowed the Washington Education Association from using mandatory non-member union dues for political activity. The WEA did it anyway, spending millions of dollars, the huge majority of the money going to Democrats.

Though it is no longer law -- the Democrats revoked that law last year, so the Democrats now force public teachers to contribute money to Democratic campaigns -- the WEA still violated the law at the time, and has now reached a settlement with the Attorney General to the tune of $975,000: $735,000 to the state, and $240,000 to teachers.

Thanks to the EFF for filing this complaint and following up with it.

Deborah Lawrence was offered an opportunity, by the Congress and the White House, to make an ornament for the White House tree.

She said the offer "nauseated" her at first -- because she hates Christmas, and presumably because she also hates any notion of American unity -- and then she decided to take the opportunity to show just how much hate she has in her heart by creating a Christmas ornament that called for the impeachment of President Bush.

Of course, as any sane person, no matter their political views, would agree the ornament was properly rejected. Even Jim McDermott said the ornament was inappropriate.

But if that's not enough, Lawrence also showed that she hates the very right that allows her to create her gauche piece: on the phone to KING5, she said that because the ornament was not instantly rejected, she thought that maybe "the Bush administration appreciates the First Amendment."

Anyone who thinks this has anything to do with the First Amendment must hate the Constitution so much that they've never bothered to actually find out what it means.

It barely needs stating that calling yourself an "artist" does not mean you're smart, or have any sense of aesthetics, but I feel like stating it anyway.

I appreciate contrarian and protest art more than most people. But I'd hope it be done with some sense of dignity and intelligence.

In an article today titled It's official: Recession since Dec. '07, CNN writer Chris Isidore tells us that it is now "official" that we are in a recession because the National Bureau of Economic Research says so.

And after all, he tells us, the NBER is "a private group of leading economists charged with dating the start and end of economic downturns." So therefore, it's official! Sounds good to me!

The word "official" necessarily implies some sort of authority; since we're talking about things the government's involved with it, it will imply to most people that it's an official government conclusion.

But it's not true. There is no such thing as an "official" recession. Or if there is, I've never seen it in the last decade of looking, and no one's been able to find it when I've asked, and certainly it's never been reported that I've been able to find. It's just blindly accepted that it's "official."

Now, I am not saying we're not in a recession. I think we are. I'm not convinced it started in December 2007 -- but then again, I also disagree with the NBER that the 2001 recession began in 2001, instead of 2000. But I am not finding fault with the NBER's analysis here, I am just noting the fact that there's nothing official about it.

That is, this is the NBER's official recognition of a recession, but it is "official" for no one but themselves. If a competing group of economists wanted to say the recession officially started in June 2008, that would be no less valid.

Isidore goes on to say, erroneously, that "Many people erroneously believe that a recession is defined by two consecutive quarters of economic activity declining." But there's nothing wrong with that at all. It is as valid as what the NBER says. It's less interesting, and less useful. But it's no less "official," because -- once again -- there is no such thing as an "official" recession.

It's like the claim that Pluto is not a planet. It's not official, and it's not true. What's true is that a group of scientists claimed for themselves that Pluto is no longer a planet. Their decision has no bearing on whether Pluto actually is a planet.

If you want to define "planet" in a way such that it includes Pluto, that is absolutely valid and reasonable. Just because a bunch of people you didn't elect or choose to represent you in any way get together and decide Pluto is not a planet, doesn't mean you have to accept it.

If you want to be a sheep and just accept what people tell you, fine. Or if you agree with the conclusions of others based on your own thoughts, also fine. But telling me I should agree just because someone says so? Not fine.

Pudge's Christmas Songs

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I enjoy Christmas music from the Monday following Thanksgiving up to New Year's Eve. Last year I did twelve Christmas songs. Here they are. I will be doing more this year. I especially recommend "Christmas at Ground Zero" (done as a chipmunk), "First Toymaker to the King," and "No More Toymakers to the King."

<pudge/*> (pronounced "PudgeGlob") is thousands of posts over many years by Pudge.

"It is the common fate of the indolent to see their rights become a prey to the active. The condition upon which God hath given liberty to man is eternal vigilance; which condition if he break, servitude is at once the consequence of his crime and the punishment of his guilt."

About this Archive

This page is an archive of entries from December 2008 listed from newest to oldest.

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