Wednesday, November 30, 2011

2011 NFL Season, Week 13 Predictions & Picks

I want to issue a red tomato can alert this week.  There are some deadly traps on this weeks schedule for the would-be swammy and prognosticator.  The toughest picks on the board are the match-ups between the weaker teams.  Inconsistency among the week is the crucial key to our pick'em misery.  You have to figure out which tomato can is going to show up and play the best.

It's not easy.  Consider the Eagles and Seahawks.  These are two non-contenders who were both playoff teams last year.  Both have struggled this season, although they have a number of wins over quality teams.  Which tomato can is going to show up this week?  I am betting on Vince Young, and against the Seattle 12th man.  It's a dangerous gamble either way.

Consider the Panthers and Bucs.  The Bucs were a team I thought highly of this past off-season.  They are not enjoying this lost season.  They have really struggled, despite winning a few great upsets.  The Panthers have been greatly invigorated by Cam Newton, despite the fact that they haven't won much.  Which tomato can do you take?  It's a trap either way.  I think I will bet on Super Cam.

Consider the Chargers and Jags.  The Chargers have every reason to expect victory.  The Jags are a foundering ship, struggling with internal termoil right now.  The Chargers better win it, or Norv is toast, but will the Chargers win this game?  Which tomato can do you take?

Monday, November 28, 2011

How about that Tebow III?

On a recent NFL Total Access, The Playmaker Michael Irvin quoted the 1st Epistle to the Corinthians 1:27:  But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise.  Of course, this is the King James translation.  I always preferred the NIV and NASB myself.  The NASB translates it:  but God has chosen the foolish things of the world to shame the wise.  Now wasn't that better?

The quote was sited in regard to the offense Tim Tebow is running in Denver right now.  "This offense is foolishness, but is confounding all of us analysts who think we are wise", said Irvin.

Absolutely correct.  I have no objections to that statement.  I would only ask one further question:  Where the hell were you guys back in 2006 when all of us were being confounded in Tim Tebow's freshman year?  We went through that whole toxic shock resulting from exposure to the spread-option zone-read offense back in 2006.

You know the Florida Gators won the BCS Championship that year by spanking a very polished Ohio State team?  That the first of two championships we didn't think they could win.  After they won their second championship in 2008, over a Sam Bradford led Oklahoma Sooner team, it became very clear that this foolishness works.

However, it's clear you guys missed the party back then.  The looks on your faces resemble the look I had on my face back in 2006.  I wrote about that several times during the 2010 draft.

I have always been something of a Florida fan since the days of Steve Spurrier.  I totally loved that beautiful Gillman-Coryell offense he ran back at Florida.  I was a big fan of Danny Wuerffel back in those days also.

When Urban Meyer arrived in Florida... well... hehehehe... Let's just say I was quite upset by early results.  We had a two-headed QB monster with Chris Leak at the helm most of the time.  He was the nominal passer.  The Fearless Freshman Tim Tebow would come in on short yardage situations.  They would line up with 5 wide and an empty backfield.  Tim would run the football straight up the middle where there was no hole.  He would wind up popping for 7 to 15 yards a shot when there was no gap in the defense and no room to run.  I had no idea how the hell he did it, but the fans went berserk every time he came in.  It was a love affair from day one.

I thought it was the wackiest offense I had ever seen in my Goddamn life.  I wished they would fire Urban Meyer so we could get coach Spurrier back in there and run that beautiful Gillman-Coryell offense again. The Zone-Read-Option was an insult to my intelligence.

But then Florida's BCS championship victory over Ohio State stunned me.  I had no idea how they managed to get there, much less win in such convincing fashion.  I just had to accept the fact that the system works.

Tebow grew on me enormously.  I developed quite a bond with the kid.  This was the son I wished I had sired.  I later discovered he has exactly the same Moon, Venus and Mars signs I do.  The kid's emotional composition, sense of aesthetics, and drive are the same as mine.  We have quite a score according to Sirus 1.1, incidentally.  Of course, mentioning this would annoy Tebow to no end.

Fast forward to the 2010 draft.  It became clear that my Rams were going to replace Marc Buldger, a move I did not support.  However, if we were going to replace Buldger, it had to be Tebow as far as I was concerned.  I told everybody how much I loved this kid.  I wrangled on-line endlessly with those who favored Sam Bradford.

At the time, we didn't think Tebow would go in the first round.  I wanted to use the #1 pick on Ndamukong Suh, and get Tim with the #33 pick.  As it turns out, this would not have worked.  Just imagine where we might be today if we might have pulled it off somehow...

I hate to mention it, but the Broncos have 300% more victories than my Rams do right now.  Whooopse... did I say that?  Don't take it personally, Sam.  We didn't equip you for victory his year.  We had absolute rubbish at the WR position until John Elway gave us the gift of Brandon Lloyd.  I've been shouting this at everybody who will listen, incidentally.  We'll get you Justin Blackmon in this year's draft.

In summary, Michael Irvin is quite correct when he says this foolishness is confounding the wise. Still, I wonder why you guys didn't know all this by the beginning of 2009?  Don't you watch college football?  Am I the only one?

You might say that can't work in the NFL, but it is obvious that it does.  Further, it's based on the same great principle that the Gillman-Coryell offense is:  Just hit it where they ain't.  Attack the emptiness and avoid the fullness, as Tzun-Tzu says in The Art of War.  If you always attack the weak spot in the defense, you'll always enjoy moderate success.  It's just that simple.

The one thing that really troubles me is this:  Tim Tebow can pass.  He's just not doing it right now.  He had a college QBR of 175 over his entire four year career in the SEC.  He had massive passing numbers in 2007, the year he won the Heisman.  I have seen him throw the football vastly better than he has done it lately.  I know he can pass.  I think you guys have given my boy a complex.  He's heard you say he can't throw the ball so many times, he is starting to believe it.

Shake it off, Tim.  Remember who you are.  Don't listen to the bullshit.  You threw the ball just fine back in college.  Do what you did back then.  Just make your decision and throw with confidence. If you get your passing confidence back, the Broncos can run the table and go 11-5.

We have apparent confirmation that Coach Spags and Devaney are on the Hot Seat

Today, November 28th, 2011 is the day when we got our first apparent confirmation that Coach Spags and GM Devaney are on the Hot Seat.  The word comes from none other than Jason La Canfora of the NFL Network, and it was published in print on the NFL's own website.

You can read it here.  SB Nation has another piece here.

We can now say, with honesty, that a serious source indicates that these two are in trouble.  La Canfora deals in rumor and innuendo, but he is seldom wrong.  I have gone hard against him a couple of times (in the case of the Donovan McNabb trade) and I wound up with egg on my face.  He was right, and I was wrong.  This guy doesn't piss in the wind.  If Jason says it, it has to be taken seriously.

There is just one caveat:  Farmers Field in Los Angeles.  Everybody knows the Rams are the #1 contender to play in Farmers Field.  Everybody knows AEG Productions are looking for two teams and not one.  How else do you get the full 1.2 billion stipulated in the Farmers Insurance contract?  They aren't going to leave that money on the table without a fight and half to get it.

With two teams headed to Los Angeles, it hard to imagine a scenario in which the Rams aren't one of them.  You just haven't heard it from officials sources due to the gag order issued by NFL HQ in New York.  Yep, that's right, the Commish done issued a gag order.  Keyshawn Johnson spilled the beans about that one on ESPN Radio.

I seldom discuss this subject because it upsets my St. Louis brethren so deeply.  Believe me, I know how they feel.  We went through it in 1994 here.

In short, La Canfora eludes to the often whispered conspiracy theory that Stan Kroenke will allow this inept front office to struggle for one more year before executing a 100% rebuild of the organization on the West Coast.  It's not so much that it will drive the box office revenues down, thus permitting a move.  Rather, its a question of how to rebuild the team most effectively in concert with a big move across country.

As I have said before, I would prefer that Spags stay, but I am increasingly alone on an island.  Most fans have had it with his offensive & special teams conservatism, as well as his clock management skills.  Perhaps it is because I am an old nose tackle who wished he had played in Spags' 4-3 scheme, but I think well of him.  He will be rehired immediately by the Giants, I can assure you of that.  They just haven't been the same without him.

Still, If Stan Kroenke does what I suspect, he will clean and flush the front office this off-season.  A new management team will be given instructions to do everything necessary to prepare the team for the move to the West Coast.  Stan may even appoint a new Team President, something he has not yet done.  The post has been vacant since former President John Shaw snuck out the back door.  

I, for one, would add my voice to those clamoring for Dick Vermeil's appointment as Team President.  Let's make him the boss, and let him pick his management team.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Dave versus the Coin Toss, Week 12 Update

The Hendry's quarter may have beaten me on Thanksgiving day, but it didn't beat me today or this week.  For the second straight week, my victory over the coin is assured prior to the Monday Night finale.

My record is currently 12-3, and likely to go 13-3.  Hendry's quarter is currently 8-7, and likely to go 9-7.  We both have the Saints favored tomorrow night.  My error rate is less than half of the random coin toss. The quarter picked the Vikings, Jags, Bucs, Colts, Seahawks, Bears and Chiefs, all of whom lost.  This is a 5-7 record on Sunday.   On the other hand, I only missed on the Rams and Seahawks, giving me a 10-2 record on Sunday.

If I had simply continued to roll with my Ravens and if I had not been such a hommer with my Rams, I could have been 14-1 right now.  As you will recall, I was skeptical of my Rams, but I couldn't bring myself to pick the Cardinals.  That was too much to bare.  I made a mistake there.  Next time, grin and bare it like a bear.  It is what it is.

One step closer to blowing up the ship

So, in case you missed it, the Rams lost to the Cardinals 23-20 today.  This brings the Rams record to 2-8, {Editor's note:  We are actually 2-9.  I lost the count.  We've lost so many games, it's easy to do.} and gives us official control of the basement in the NFC West, the worst division in professional football.  We are officially one loss closer to blowing up the ship.

I said it last week, and I will say it again this week.  If we can't beat weak and rebuilding teams in our own pathetic division, we have plenary proof of abject failure.  The rebuilding project has failed.

The good news is that we remain in position to draft Justin Blackmon.  The bad news is we suck.  The good news is that we have one more victory than we did in 2009.  The bad news is that we have only one more victory that we did in 2009.

The boos are loud and continuous in Saint Louis

Well, the battle does not go well today.  The Cards are up 20-10 on the Rams right now.  The boos have been rather loud and continuous all game long.  Austin Pettis & Brandon Lloyd have both made catches that have brought the fans to their feet cheering, but these were only fleeting moments.  The chorus of boos have dominated these proceedings.  Not even in Indianapolis are the fans booing like this.

It's loud moments like these that make me think everyone is going to get fired at the end of this season.  I suspect we will do what the 49ers did at the end of last season.  We will clean and flush the coaching staff, but we will also blow-up the front office.  Just remember:  The prime suspect is Billy Devaney.  It's his draft decisions that have put us in this pathetic position.  If we don't get him out of there, we won't improve.  Hopefully, we will not flush and clean the roster.  This would be the second consecutive clean and flush without success.  I would hate that.

The 8th House

Live and learn.  I did a considerable amount of reading last night before falling asleep.  The reading was about about the Astrological House system.  It was quite fascinating  It would seem that there is one more important House I need to consider in MySynastryEngine.  This is the 8th House.

The 8th House is naturally ruled by Scorpio.  It is associated with Death, Rebirth, Transformation, and... yes... you guessed it... sex.  Scorpio is a femmie water sign, exhibits high levels of fertility, and we all know that Scorpios have the absolute highest sex drive in the zodiac.   Scorpio rules the male gentiles, according to rumor.  This makes the 8th House a big one for karmic unions.

I had a fairly poor understanding of the 8th House before this reading.  I understood the 8th House as the house of death, reincarnation, and transformation.  I understood it had things to do with regenerative processes such as surgery, medical treatments and healing.  It turns out that this House deals with the wheel of Samsara more than anything else.  This is the cycle of death, sex, conception rebirth, life death, sex, conception and rebirth.  The mysteries of life and the life-force are found here.

According to the readings last night, this is the House ruling the reproductive drives, mergers of all kinds, marriage consummation  and intimacy in all forms.  These authors deny the 5th House controls reproduction.  The 5th House is just the house of child rearing and parenthood as an occupation, not conception, fertility or sex.

So the 8th House is absolutely crucial, is it?  What implications does this hold for yours truly? It means any woman with an Aquarius Ascendant is in mega-deep dooh-doo versus me.   Why is this?  If her Ascending sign is Aquarius, Aquarius rules her 1st house.  If Aquarius rules the 1st House, Virgo rules her 8th House and Leo rules her 7th House.  This is a double-whammy versus me.  This means most of my power-planets {e.g. Ascendant, Sun, Mercury, Uranus, Pluto, etc.} land in her 8th House, and whilst Venus and Mars land in her 7th House.  The effect is devastating, like a 5 megaton H-bomb.

There are some warnings about join finances in this configuration, however, the results should be impressive.

Conversely, any woman with a concentration of power planets in Aries and Pisces is going to put the whammy on me.  Pisces is on my 7th House and Aries rules my 8th House.  For the first time, Sirus's projections of the 538 score for the 4/13/1979 Aries woman would seem to make some sense.  This is an Aries woman with considerable Pisces in her chart.  As such, she is afflicted with internal Fire-Water conflicts, but she has the right stuff to mess me up... this according to the Housing system.  The strange thing is that Sirus seems to make it's calculations without reference to the Housing system... go figure.

So the object lesson for the Synastry engine designer is this:  The whole game of Synastry is beginning to resemble a game of Spades played on a roulette wheel with 12 slots on it.  Those 12 slots are almost like books in Spades.  You want your cards to naturally fall into book 5, 7 and 8.  This is how you score victories in the romance game.  Likewise, you need her cards to fall into books 5, 7 and 8 of your housing system.

Dave vs. the Coin, Week 12

So, before we split from work on Wednesday, my buddy Hendry tossed the quarter for this week's pick.  Hendry is from Indonesia, so he is not much of a football fan.  You can't say he has a biased thumb or owns a biased quarter.

I was pretty astounded by the results of the coin toss.  The quarter was hot, and I knew it.  I didn't expect the quarter to beat me on Thanksgiving Day, but I knew the quarter was going to be tough.  We might have another octopus story here...  Remember the octopus that was undefeated in the World Cup last time around?

Saturday, November 26, 2011

It has begun...

I just arrived home an hour or so ago from my journey to Fresno for the Thanksgiving holiday.  After a brick solid hour of unpacking kitchen gear from my car, I thought it was time for a report.

You'll pardon me if I sound narcissistic, but the Thanksgiving Day proceedings had much of the feel of a debutante ball.   I was the debutante.  A number of family members and near-family members hadn't seen me in quite some time.  As you might expect, 145 pound of weight loss produced quite a flip-out reaction.  However, there were three reactions that topped them all.  I will list them in chronological order, not priority.

Case 1: The former exchange student.   

A couple years ago (2?), my aunt and uncle hosted an exchange student from the Ukraine.  She's transferred down to CSU Northridge now, and is applying for a full visa. I am not sure how old she is, but I know she is an August 18th a Leo.  She told me that.  She's a very nice girl, but she seemed like a very young girl a few years ago.  She seemed hardly old enough to attend college. 

Well...  Interesting things...  she showed up to Thanksgiving with a new American boyfriend in tow, and he is quite a good looking young guy too.  It seems that she has now physically matured quite a bit, and she is young woman in full bloom.  I was happy quite for her.  

The bizarre thing is that she couldn't quite take her eyes off of me.  Now, at first I took no suspicions about that.  She had seen me several times at the top of my glory around 330 pounds.   I figured she was just as amazed by the weight loss as everybody else.  

Well... that explanation held for the first hour or two.  Then it began to falter.  I noticed her noticing me just a few too many times.  The expression on her face didn't look much resemble the appearance of stunned disbelief anymore.  It looked more like the expression of the ladies at the CrossFit gym.  That would be fascination.  When she took a mild reprimand from her boyfriend, I knew I wasn't imagining anything.   It was what I thought it was.

Of course, I never breathed a word of this to anyone at the event.  This setting was what the psychologists call "a strong situation" where circumstances dictated a formal protocol of interactions.  Nothing came of this, but it was interesting.  Nevertheless, I found myself shaking my head in disbelief.  Why is it always the Leos?

Case 2:  The elder Pisces female
In one of the several holiday settings, I met a friend of the family who happens to be an elder Pisces female.  Feb 26, 1949 is her birthday, in case you were wondering.  Yes, I asked her.  No, I don't know how truthful the answer is.  

She felt compelled to engage me in conversation on an assortment of topics ranging from the weight-loss, CrossFit, to football, to Lost, to X-Files, to Fringe.  She kept the conversation going.  I was the guy she wanted to talk to.  She was extremely friendly.  Maybe a bit too friendly.  I found this a bit unusual.  

If Sirus is to be believed, the score is 155.  That's very strong.  As I have mentioned in previous blog posts, Sirus 1.1 largely scores the situation without any reference to the House System.  If she happens to have either a Pisces or Taurus Ascendant, I Housed her royally.   Of course, nothing would come of this, but I took solace in the fact that the Pisces females behave as expected...  no matter what their age.  At least this much of the theory is reliable.  Virgos are comforted by the appearance of order and mathematical logic in the structure of the universe.

Case 3:  Miss Eva
So, once upon a time, my Dad owned a restaurant in Fresno. It was a dinner and music club.  Lots of local musicians played there.  He adopted one in particular we'll call Miss Eva.  She happens to be a May 25, 1988 Gemini.  How about that?  My Sagittarius dad adopts a Gemini daughter.  Perfect!  Couldn't be better.  That's a 180.

As I was grinding the pesto for a pasta dish, I heard him on the phone conversing with Miss Eva.  It turned out she was a tad hungry on the day after Thanksgiving.  She was doing the starving musician thing.  Naturally, my dad invites her over to sample my Pesto.  I over-salted the pesto, but otherwise, it was a splendid feast.

Well, it turns into dinner and a movie (in my dad's living room), and Miss Eva is giggling incessantly.  She is cracking up at every little off-handed remark I make.  One example:  I accidentally dropped my SpyderCo Stretch ZDP-189 into my big class of ice water.  I flip out and immediately begin to dry out my knife on my expensive Under Armour gear.

I explain that the Stretch is made from one of the world's finest knife steels (ZDP-189).  This is an ultra-high carbon steel; approximately 3% carbon as opposed to 0.9% for ordinary high-carbon.  I explain how this leads to a Rockwell hardness of 68, but unfortunately this marvelous steel is not particularly corrosion resistant.  Hence I needed to dry it immediately. I provided a few more scientific facts about how nitrogen can substitute for carbon in the steel matrix and provide all of the benefits plus extreme corrosion resistance... unfortunately, ZDP-189 is not such a steel.

Miss Eva can't stop laughing at that.  She thought that was an hysterical comedy monologue.  When my dad drove her back to her place, she told him "Dave is the shit!  He knows everything!"  I have only my exaggerating father to validate that this event took place, but according to this exaggerating man, she was quite taken by me.  One thing I do know from the behavior sciences:  When a woman can't stop giggling around a guy, it is a sign of attraction.  When every little thing he does or says is funny, even if it is about carbon and nitrogen in the steel matrix, there's little doubt she likes him.

You wouldn't laugh at a monologue about carbon and nitrogen in the steel matrix, would you?

I checked it out the Sirus 1.1 scores, and Miss Eva really shouldn't have been reacting quite this way.  We some remarkable scores, but not in the sexual attraction department. As always, a score above 150 is considered extremely high. 

1. Romantic and Sexual Attraction:  0
2. Similarity of Interests and Temperament:  143
3. Mutual Success and High Achievement:  89
4. Problem Solving, Communication, and Mutual Understanding:  169
5. Mutual Kindness, Friendliness, Pleasantness, and Peace:  175
6. Aggressiveness, Competition, Power, Success, or Violence:  0
7. Adventurousness, Surprises, Disturbances:  57
8. Shared Creativity, Imagination, and Inspiration:  108

As I mentioned before, these scores are without reference to the Housing system.  If Miss Eva has a Pisces or Taurus Ascendant, I Housed her royally.
In Summary
Did you ever have one of those feelings that the tidal wave is coming?  The shit is about ready to hit the fan? Fukushima is about ready to meltdown?  Things are about to getting interesting, as the Chinese would say?  You are standing on Precipice of the Abyss?  All hell's about to start breaking loose?

I got that feeling, but in a good way.  To try to rehab my wounded shoulder, I am going to start Bikram Yoga on Monday evening.  

I may loose a lot of sleep in 2012.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

2011 NFL Season, Week 12 Predictions

So, be warned:  I have two totally unjustifiable homer picks on my slate today.  I picked my Rams against the Cardinals, even thought I am skeptical that we will win.  I pick the Broncos against the Chargers, even thought I think it's a 50/50 toss up.

The two big games on the horizon are the 49ers @ Ravens and Giants @ Saints.

The first is a game pitting the #2 and #3 ranked powers in the NFL... and the coaches are brothers too.  This should spoil Thanksgiving dinner for sure.  It's a tough pick, but I have to go with my gut on this one.  I think the 49ers prevail.  The Ravens are coming off another gutsy emotional win in the conference.  That means it's time for a let-down.  They also lack Ray Lewis in the middle.  I don't like any of these facts.  Although it pains me to do it, I must pick the 49ers here.

The second game pits the Giants and the Saints, and it's a game that may determine the top-wildcard birth in the NFC.  Although it pains me to say it, I think the Giants are going to lose their 3rd straight game.  I think the Saints and their home-field advantage will be overwhelming in this game.  Their loss to the Eagles really shook my confidence in the Giants.

The rest of the games are pretty straight up-and-down choices.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Janus 4.3 regarding me and the Taurus Ascendant

So here is the boiler-plate text generated by Janus 4.3 every time a female happens to have a Taurus Ascendant, in this case, the text was harvested from a report generated for a female born 5/8/1979... one I happen to know.

In this case, Mars managed to escape the 5th House.  It get's crazier in cases when Mars is in the 5th house.

His Sun is in your 5th House
Let the good times roll. You have fun together and quickly learn how to make each other happy. You feel good in one another's company. He can unlock the doors to your creative talents and lead you on the road to self-discovery. Children may be an important aspect of your relationship.

 His Mercury is in your 5th House
Every day with David is play day. He knows how to inject some fun into your life and is constantly coming up with suggestions of things to do. If you have any creative or artistic leanings he may give you ideas or offer constructive criticism. You may have an interest in the same hobbies.
His Uranus is in your 5th House
There's a good chance that your attraction to David took you by surprise and came upon you quite suddenly. You looked up one day and there he was. This is one of those 'love at first sight' affairs that tend to start and end quite abruptly. The key to your relationship is to live for the moment and enjoy the now.
His Pluto is in your 5th House
You have an almost undeniable attraction to David. He wields a powerful influence over you and in your love-life there is great passion and intensity in your love-making. You may feel possessive towards one another. Your relationship never becomes stale and routine because it is constantly regenerating.
His Ascendant is in your 5th House
Every now and then someone comes along who we feel instantly attracted to; David is such a person. His personality hits just the right chord in your heart. You can't help but feel close to him. You know you can have fun together.

Janus 4.3 regarding me and the Pisces Ascendant

Just thought I would show you the boiler-plate text Janus 4.3 serves up every single time I compare myself to any female with a Pisces Ascenant.  The text is very interesting, and very funny.  This particular text was harvested from the report of a female born 11/21/1979, so her housing system actually placed my Venus in her 7th House also.

Read it and weep, oh Scorpio girls born around noon time.

His Sun is in your 7th House
This is a classic partnership combination. You recognise just how important David is in your life. It is as if you and he are meant for one another. He lights up your life and shows you what relationships are all about - for better or worse.
His Mercury is in your 7th House
You think of David as your partner and personal sounding board. There are things that you can say to him that only he can understand and appreciate. You are attracted to his intelligence and way of thinking. He stimulates you mentally and there is an ease of communication between you.
His Venus is in your 7th House
This is a significant relationship in life. He opens you up to the power of love and you can feel that you have found 'Mr or Mrs Right'. Partnership or marriage is important to you both. Being together and sharing special experiences rocks both of your boats.
His Uranus is in your 7th House
Don't expect a conventional relationship with David because it just 'ain't gonna happen'. He is looking for someone to have different and stimulating experiences with and this is one of the reasons you are attracted to each other. Life with him is exciting and never ever boring.

His Pluto is in your 7th House
Be very sure that you want this relationship with David. There are issues of power and control between you, with him being the partner that wants to do all the controlling. You may be drawn to him through some kind of hidden force that you may find hard to break away from.

His Ascendant is in your 7th House
You 'know' this person. In David, you recognise a buddy who could be that and more. You may be hanging out together for quite some time.

A short little diddy about House-Based Synastry

Welcome to Sagittarius Season.  Today, November 22, is the first day of Sagittarius... at least from a tropical Zodiac and goecentric point of view.

This past Scorpio season turned out to be quite a learning experience for me.  I studied the charts of many female Scorpios as their birthdays passed by.  I frequently compared them to mine.  I learned several unexpected things.

First of all, any Scorpio female born around noon time is likely to have an ascending sign Pisces.  This trend becomes more pronounced as the Scorpio month continues. According to certain Synastry engines--not Sirus or Kepler--I have blistering scores versus *_ANY_* female with an Ascending sign of Pisces.

Why is that?  A Pisces Ascendant means that the first house of the individual's chart is in Pisces.  We start the housing system there.  Mathematically, this necessarily means that Virgo is the ruler of the 7th House of the individual's chart.  The 7th House is the house of marriage and partnership.

Now, you have to understand that I am no ordinary run of the mill Virgo.  I am a Super Virgo.  I am a Virgo with an Ascendant of Virgo, and a whole bunch of Virgo planets in my first house.  This includes my Sun. Mercury, Pluto, and Uranus.  I also have some asteroids there, including Vesta.

Theoretically, any female with an Ascendant of Pisces, and therefore Virgo on the 7th House, has to deal with the influence of all my power-planets right-schmack in her 7th House:  The house of marriage and partnership.  According to Janus 4.3, this is supposed to have a pretty overwhelming affect upon the lucky girl or the unfortunate victim.  Particularly, Uranius in the 7th House is supposed to create instantaneous love-at-first-sight experiences.  Further, Pluto in the 7th house is supposed to give me overwhelming power and influence over such females.

In a good scenario, such a female may believe immediately that I am 'the one and only'.  In an adverse situation she may feel overwhelmed, panic, and run away from me.  In a truly adverse situation, she may feel completely dominated and oppressed by me, despite the fact that I have done nothing to warrant such a conclusion.

So be warned:  Any Scorpio female born around noon is in big trouble if she comes up against me in a party.  Further, any female born with an Ascendant of Pisces is in trouble if she bumps into me in a singles situation. You are doomed.  You are like an unfortunate quarterback facing Ndamukong Suh.

I also learned that any female with an Ascendant of Taurus is immediately & completely doomed to an obsessive and compulsive, all-consuming, exhausting sexual relationship with me... if we should happen to meet.  We're talking fatal attraction here. 

Why is that?  A Taurus Ascendant means Taurus rules the first house.  This means Virgo rules the 5th House.  The 5th House is the house of sex, pleasure, reproduction, and recreation.  Any female with an Ascendant of Taurus is going to find all of my power planets schmack in her 5th House, tugging away at her sexual and reproductive drives. Besides that, you have a natural affinity between Virgo and Taurus at play here.

She won't know what hit her.  The presence of Pluto in the 5th House is supposed to have nearly unspeakable consequences.   She will want to play house immediately.  She might become violent if I should happen to hesitate.  Be warned...  You can't say I didn't warn you...

[As a quick side note:  It's funny that this has never happened to me.  There must be plenty of girls with an Ascendant of Taurus.  In fact, at this point, I am feeling mighty damn rejected by the earth clan.  The Taurus and Capricorn girls will have nothing to do with me.  Nearly all the chicks who have flirted with me on-line have been Leos.]

Finally, I discovered that any female with an Ascendant of Aquarius is also in for a shocker if she bumps into me.  Why is that?  Well, we start her housing system with Aquarius, and this naturally makes Leo the ruler of her 7th House.  I just happen to have two crucial power planets in Leo:  Venus and Mars.  If you put Venus and Mars in the house of marriage and partnership.. well... let's just say that's like putting dynamite in the oil furnace.

Same thing if her Ascenant happens to be in Aries. This would place my Venus and Mars in her 5th House.  Put Venus and Mars in the house of sex and pleasure and we're talking about big trouble in little China.

There is a general lesson to be taken out of my specific case.  If you happen to have a concentration of powerful planets in one sign, you look for people with an Ascenant of the opposite sign.  Alternately, you count back 5 signs from that concentration, and look for people with that Ascenant.  Your power planets will be concentrated in his/her 7th House or 5th House.  This will lead to some serious shaking and quaking.

There is also a lesson here for the software engineer working on a synastry engine.  My synastry engine should be designed to look for these concentrations of power planets, and automatically seek candidates with opposing Ascendants, or Ascendants 5 signs back.  These will be the highest-percentage candidates for life's journey.

So Kroenke is planning to blow up the front office...?

Ryan Van Bibber of the Turf Show Times is reporting that Rams' owner Stan Kroenke is planning to blow up the front office and hire a new head coach.  That's the Rams' front office and the Rams' head coach, just to make sure we are clear.  Stan owns a lot of sports franchises.  Just wanted to avoid confusion there.

You can read about it here.

I place a question mark at the end of my title because I was unable to follow the trail of breadcrumbs back to the original source.  The links provided on this article point to the San Diego Union Tribune, and a piece detailing the Chargers' need for fresh blood in the management suites.

I do not deny the fact that both teams need new management.  I've been saying it for years.  I just couldn't find any reference to the Rams in that piece.  The piece is 3 pages long, and I grepped each page.  The word 'Rams' does not occur on any of the three pages. Since it is an online article, a revision and partial retraction may have been published.

I think we are all at the point now where we have rejected Billy Devaney's eye for talent.  More specifically, we don't think he's got one.  The thought of Devaney running another draft makes the hair on my neck stand on end.  The dude can't draft a wide receiver to save his life, and this is precisely the player we need the most.  I think we are all hoping that a transition will be accomplished quickly after the season ends.

However, with that said, they don't call him Silent Stan for nothing.  As far as I know, Silent Stan has been silent on this subject.  I would not expect him to telegraph his punch in this situation.

I sure hope Van Bibber is correct about this, but the prospect also fills me with some dread.

I had a lengthy conversation about this with some fellow Ram-fans at work, and we discussed the implications of firing the EVP and GM in some detail.  I am a fan of Spagnuolo's, and would prefer to see him stay on.  However, we know that this is bloody unlikely if both the EVP and GM are fired, as need be.

When you appoint a new Team President, EVP and/or GM, you almost always delegate the authority to remake and remodel the team.  Some owners can and do established protected players and coaches, but this can interfere in the rebuilding process.  Generally, you don't bring in a man at the rank of President/GM unless you are ready to trust him with the reigns of power, and the right to select his coaching staff.

More precisely, it would be unwise to talk Dick Vermeil into accepting the job of Team President, and then tie his hands by now allowing him to pick his coaching staff.  You have to allow Coach Vermeil to remake the organization in his own image.  Preferably, something a bit more like the good 'ole days of the Greatest Show on Turf.

All of this implies that we can't get rid of Demoff and Devaney without also sacking coach Spagnuolo.  Many will be glad to see him go.  I will not.  I have admired his defense mind for some time now.  I like what he has done with our defense.  Unfortunately, offensive power has been Priority-Z under his administration, and we have shown very little of it.

I am afraid that a lack of attention to scoring offense is going to cost another defensive HC his position.  It's an age-old story.  I have seen it many times before.  Names like George Allen, Chuck Knox, John Robinson, and Marty Schottenheimer come to mind.  All of these men have been hired and fired many times because of their strong defensive minds, and their offensive conservatism.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

A full day of rest leads to a synastry breakthrough

As I mentioned in previous blog posts, I am walking pile of training injuries.  I am having great difficulty making the jump to Kettlebell and CrossFit training intensities.  About 8 days ago, I suffered a pretty serious shoulder injury which has left my right hand numb most of the time.  That's right, I am currently typing with a partially numb right hand.

Because I have only slowed down, rather than stopped, it just hasn't gotten better.  In truth, this may require a visit to Dr. Bachner's surgery center, and he may need to perform the Sam Bradford procedure on me.  In the interests of healing, and in view of our harsh weather conditions today, I declared a full day of rest.  No exercise, period!  I mean zip, zero, nada, nothing; not even abs.

Naturally, I was at loose ends today.  It might have been impossible if it hadn't been a football Sunday.  Even so, I was at loose ends, not knowing what to do with my spare energy.

I found myself doing extensive searches online for key aspects in the pseudo-science of Synastry.  As you know, I have a project in progress (currently on hold) to build my own Synastry engine.  The objective is to create a collection of webservices that will power both a collection of mobile apps, and a major-league Windows WPF application.

As I did my research, it suddenly dawned on me.  I had the massive ah-ha! experience.  I suddenly snapped on a perfect, simple, elegant, high-performance architecture for this Synastry engine.  I now know how I will do the high-speed computations for millions of people per minute.

In short, this is a classic application of Multi-Dimensional Analytics.  Multi-Dimensional databases are popular and vogue stuff in the business intelligence market.  The notion is fairly simple, mathematically speaking.  Each point of data has three or more dimensional coordinates.  Think of each coordinate in a hyper-cubic space.

In a simple cube, each data-point has an X, Y and Z coordinate.  You can fetch any point of data in the cube by referencing it's three coordinates   However, the cube is only the start.  You can have n dimensions, where n is any finite number.  This means 6, 8, 9 and 12 dimensions are all possible.  One word of warning: As you increase the number dimensions in your hyper-cube, the exponential explosion of data points can easily blow even the most powerful server's capacity.

I am not worried about this.  In my case, Synastry is a relatively manageable 4 dimensional data problem.  Consider the following Dimensions:

  1. The A chart {e.g. Ascendant, Sun, Moon, Mercury, Venus, Mars, etc.}
  2. The B chart {e.g. Ascendant, Sun, Moon, Mercury, Venus, Mars, etc.}
  3. The Angles {e.g. Conjunction, Sextile, Square, Trine, Opposition, etc.}
  4. The Categories {e.g. Romance, Communication, Creativity, Aggression, Mutual Success, etc}
I need one point of data corresponding to the unique combination of each of these four coordinates.  As soon as I populate the four-dimensional cube, it is just a of looking up the scores in the cube.  Of course, we still need to compute and compare two people's charts, but this is the relatively easy part.  Scoring their potential for a relationship accurately... this is the hard part.

Consider a simple hypothetical scenario.  I am a Virgo.  A female I am interested in is a Capricorn born January 14, 1979.  Her moon is in Leo, her Venus is in Sagittarius.  There are a number of excellent aspects here.  We have a near-trine between suns.  Her Sun conjuncts my Vertex.  Her moon trines my moon and conjuncts my Venus.  Her Venus trines my Mars.  What should her score be?

It depends on the category.  Each aspect I just mentioned will have an impact on several different category scores.  Romance, Aggression, Mutual Success will all be impacted to varying degrees by each of these aspects.  Without calculation, we can already know the score will be very, very good, but just how good?

Using a four dimensional hyper-cube, and I can look up each score, for each aspect, for each category.  The sum can be fetched using MDX SQL code query.

Of course, there are other ways you can do it.  You could do it in a purely functional manner, but this could be extremely computationally intensive in a situation where you are attempting to serve a million people in an Internet/Smart Phone world.  A pre-calculated hyper cube should be faster and more scalable.

It's also extremely well organized, testable, verifiable, and maintainable.

Dave versus the Coin-Toss, Update 1

So the slate of games just ended for the day.  My record with one game left to play is 9-3, or 75%.  My trusty quarter didn't do very well.  The coin's record is 5-7, or 41.66%.  My victory over the coin is mathematically assured, regardless of what happens tomorrow night.

I am glad I am able to say--without boasting--that I am substantially more accurate than a random coin toss.

Will E. Stanley Kroenke clean house this off-season?

For those who do not follow my lowly Rams, you may or may not be surprised to find out that quite an angry clamor has been welling up in St. Louis (and other places) among Ram-fans.  There are rumblings.

A movement has been rising among Ram-fans, and the goal of this movement is to throw out the bums at the top of the organizational pyramid.  We're not talking about the Head Coach or the QB.  You do hear some rumblings about Spagnuolo and Bradford, but not much.  No folks, the stated targets of the movement are Executive VP Kevin Demoff and General Manager Billy Devaney.

Specifically, a motion is on the floor to fire Demoff and Devaney and bring back former head coach Dick Vermeil as the team President, and perhaps the GM, if he wants to wear two hats.  If he doesn't want double duty, let Vermeil pick his management team.

Will our owner, Enos Stanley Kroenke, pay attention to this mob of rabid Ram-fans?  I sure hope he does.  I was on the fence until today's game, but this loss to the Seahawks was just too much to take.  If we cannot defeat an inferior and rebuilding football teams in our pathetic division, when we have the home-field advantage, certainly the project is an abject failure.  This loss pushed me over the edge.

I am now calling for Devaney's head on a platter.  It would be good to get Demoff out of the way at the same time.  Clean house at the top.  Flush the toilet in the executive board room.  Have them pack-up and go.

You might not be surprised to read this in print coming from me.  I have very seldom been in agreement with Billy Devaney about personnel moves.  I would not have drafted many of the players he has drafted.  I found nothing winsome or impressive about many of the players he selected.  They were not on my shopping list, and I don't understand why they were on his shopping list.  I have a difficult time understanding how these busts wound up on his radar, much less his draft cards.

We must conclude that the man has poor taste in horseflesh.  He just doesn't seem to be able to identify a real player.  Certainly, an eye for durability, dependability and reliability just isn't there.

After the 2011 draft, I stated in print that I was ready to bury Devaney's arse somewhere in the Nevada desert.  I believed he made heinous mistakes, and it is looking increasingly like I was right about that.  Certainly, we did not equip Sam Bradford for success in this past draft.

Furthermore, I haven't particularly liked his taste in free-agents.  The two guys starting at guard for us right now would not have been on my shopping list.  I would have made a change at Left Guard by now.  There are some substantial free-agents we could have had for a song, and we did not go get them.  This has been analyzed and presented very well by the NFL Network's own Jamie Dukes.  Consult him for an unbiased opinion.

Football is a contest of men, fought on the field of battle.  The game belongs to the players.  They win the game.  They loose the game.  Certainly the coach matters, but the men make the difference.  This is not a good team loaded with good men.  Our offensive skill position players are pretty terrible, and our offensive linemen are pretty damn fragile.  We're doing a bit better defensively, but we have only 2 all-pro caliber talents there, and this is probably Coach Spagnuolo's doing.

After many years (6) of losing records, our team seems to be listing and foundering on the low-tides of the 2011 season.  We are no better than we were two or three years ago.  The offense is struggling just as badly as it was in 2009 when we averaged 10.9 points per game and won just one game.

This offense is ugly as sin to watch.  Our offense is downright offensive to any decent football-sensibilities.  Things have not worked out as planned.  The script was not supposed to play out like this.  The Rams were the buzz in the NFC West during preason... not that this is saying much.  This is a fight gone bad.

I truly believe the failure is at the top, it begins and ends with Billy Devaney's choice of players.  This is where we have to begin the correction.

Dave versus the Coin Toss

So, as I returned home from my Saturday night at the gym, I heard a truly novel sports talk segment.  These two cats were comparing their week 10 predictions to the results produced by a random coin toss.  They were embarrassed by the fact that their picks were inferior to the random results of the coin toss.  The coin chose better than they did.

I decided I would conduct the coin toss experiment myself this week, just to see whether I am any better than a quarter.  Heads represented the visiting team.  Tails represented the home team.  I tossed that coin all over my apartment.  The results were as follows:


Saturday, November 19, 2011

2011 NFL Season Week 11 Predictions

It's pretty easy slate of choices in week #11.  There is some room for disagreement here, mostly with the small potatoes.  We have only one marque match-up between contenders this week:  Bengals @ Ravens.  Every other game is either a small fry match-up or a mis-match.

  1. Raiders @ Vikings is basically a mis-match.  If Carson Palmer shoots a QBR of 152.6 in the first half of this game, the competitive phase will be over quickly.  This game might be close, but I think the Raiders have every advantage except homefield.
  2. Bills @ Dolphins is a real head-ache.  The Bills are now officially in a tailspin after getting humiliated in Dallas.  I still don't feel confident in picking the Dolphins because of Sparano's situation there.  I also feel that the Bills have better talent.  They say you never bet against the streak, and the Bills are on a losing streak.  However, there comes a time when all streaks end.  I take the Bills.
  3. Jags @ Brows is another major headache.  This is a small-fry match-up.  I find it difficult to pick the Browns after the way they lost ugly to my Rams, who won even uglier.  Still, the Browns have homefield and the Jags are nothing to write home about.  You have to hold your nose and pick one of them.  I take the Browns.
  4. Bengals @ Ravens is the key match of the week.  This is the game we will all be watching.  The Ravens are inconsistent, and the Bengals are young.  Both teams are very good, but I think the veteran Ravens are much more talented.  The Raven offense is struggling, and the Bengal defense is good.  The Bengal offense is going to either miss A.J. Green or deal with a hobbled A.J..  This isn't good when you face the Raven defense.  The Bengals can win this game, but percentage-wise, I think the Ravens are more likely.
  5. Panthers @ Lions is another headache galore.  The Lions are talented but slumping, and their QB has a busted finger on his passing hand.  Super-Cam has made the Panthers competitive in most games.  What happens here?  I think the Lions get up off the carpet and re-assert themselves.  Still this verdict is hard to justify when their QB has a busted finger and nobody to carry the mail for him.
  6. Bucs @ Packers looks like a serious mismatch.  They say you never bet against the streak, but there comes a time when all streaks end.  I remember a time, not so long ago, when a very similar Viking team visited Tampa Bay with a 9-0 record.  The Vikings had a high-powered offense and a leaky defense.  They had a QB playing MVP caliber football.  The Bucs snapped that streak.  This time it is a little bit different.   I think the Packers will go 10-0
  7. Cowboys @ Redskins also looks like a mismatch.  The Cowboys already won the first match at a time when the Redskins were playing much higher quality football.  Further, the Cowboys are surging now that Tony Romo has a little bit of time to throw the football.  The Redskins' offense looks like a basket case.  I just don't think the 'skins can score enough to win.  I take the Cowboys.
  8. Cardinals @ 49ers...  This is a mismatch and the 49ers have homefield.  Forget about it.
  9. Seahawks @ Rams... Awe those pesky Seahawks!  They have no shot at the playoffs or doing anything at all, but they are intent upon upsetting people, especially their fans who wish they were in a position to draft Andrew Luck.  No such Luck.  Matches between tomato cans are more difficult to pick than match ups between high-caliber teams.  Inconsistency is the key to pick'em difficulty.  I am going to roll with my Rams, our home-field advantage our better QB, our better RB, and our singular receiver.  Our defense is much-maligned, but the criticism is overstated.  If the offense could have stayed on the field for more than 3 downs during the first 5-6 games of the season, our defense would be ranked much higher.
  10. Titans @ Falcons... oh those pesky Titans!  They are a rebuilding franchise and they don't want to admit it.  Although they are 5-4, and equal to the Falcons in record, I honestly don't believe these Titans have a significant shot at the post-season.  I do expect the Texans to fall-forward and take the single playoff spot from the AFC South.  On the other hand, the Falcons remain a contender for a playoff birth, and I think they are a much more talented team.  I'm taking the Falcons... and they better not let me down, or I'll fly to Atlanta and whup...
  11. Chargers @ Bears might be the game that costs Nov Turner his job as head coach.  They say never bet against the streak.  Philip Rivers is on a big-interception streak, and so to are Bears.  The Bears defense is ball-hawking like crazy and the Chargers are very accommodating in this regard.  This spells doom for the Chargers if you ask me.
  12. Eagles @ Giants is unlikely to be one for the ages.  The NFL Network has been doing it's utmost to remind us of some of the historically great matches between these two teams, but this just won't be one of them.  The Eagle D is struggling like hell, and now their offense will be minus Michael Vick and Jeremy Maclin.  Forget about it!  The Giants will probably come out foaming at the mouth after losing to the 49ers.  I think the Eagles will take a butt-whooping here.  They can take it any which way they want to take it, but they are going to take it.
  13. Chiefs @ Patriots:  I concur with Tom Waddles' statement about this game.  This is like Mike Tyson well out of his prime facing Butter Bean. 'Nuff said.  

Bod Pod XIV: Dreadful

So the results of Bod Pod XIV are in and they are dreadful.  Why are they dreadful?  Because I lost more lean weight than fat weight over the past three weeks, that's why.  I can't view that as anything other than a terrible results.  Without further ado, here is the summary grid showing my key changes over the past 21 days.

Fat Weight
Lean Weight
Total Weight

Just to summarize that in English, here are the bullet points.

  1. My body fat percentage decreased 1.3%, which is good, but my BFP remains at 21.5% which is not healthy.  I am still more than 1.5% away from moving the check-box, and I remain 4.5% away from the ultimate goal. 
  2. My fat weight reduced 4.38 pounds, which is a paltry average of 0.2 pounds per day.
  3. My lean weight diminished 4.422 pounds, which constitutes a larger average of 0.211 pounds per day.
  4. My total weight decreased 8.802 pounds, but most of it was bad loss.
  5. My body volume decreased 4.05 liters from 84.781 liters to 80.731 liters.

Naturally, anytime you are losing lean faster than fat, you are clearly doing something wrong.  Now, I have been dealing with a shoulder injury that has kept me out of the CrossFit gym for the past 7 days.  This does not mean I have ceased my workouts.  I have continued with the ROM and the Kettlebells, and a few aerobic workouts.

I am hard-pressed to explain how my lean weight could have diminished this way at time when Kettlebell & ROM overload should be providing the stimulus necessary to make Trifecta do it's thing.  Understand I am also under the influence of a pro-hormone stack.  I should be building lean right now.

Perhaps, I am just not eating enough.  Perhaps the solution is more food, not less.

The only really positive note in this report is that my total body volume has reduced to 80.731 liters.  When I began testing in May, my body volume was 117.111 liters.  This means my volume has decreased some 36.38 liters.  That is equal to 9.61 gallons of loss.  Think of nine and a half big milk bottles coming out from under my skin and vanishing.  That's pretty impressive.

Friday, November 18, 2011

185.0 exactly, with Bod Pod XIV on the horizon

So the score this morning was 185.0 English pounds on the Tanita bathroom scale.  Tomorrow is the big day of Bod Pod XIV.  I am anticipating a weigh-in of 184.15 on the Bod Pod due to the inaccuracies & short comings of the Tanita.  The Bod Pod is always lighter.

Three weeks ago, the Bod Pod placed me at 195.7.  If everything goes as expected, I will have lost some 11.55 pounds of gross body weight since that time.  That constitutes an astounding 3.85 pounds of loss per week over the course of the past three weeks.  I thought the hay-days of 3.5 pound fat weight losses were gone forever.  This was just a phenomenon of one good summer, never to be replicated again.  

Nope!  Everything old is new again.  I credit CrossFit, and more importantly, the Kettlebells for getting the cannon balls rolling again.  This new training method is truly astounding.  I just wish I wasn't a pile of training injuries because of it.

We have yet to see how all of these facts and figures plays out in the fat/lean ratio, but hopefully, there will be a big improvement.

This could be the week where the check-box moves to the "Healthy" zone.  I just might be under 20% body fat this time.  Frankly, I should be.  Last time around, I tallied over 151 pounds of lean mass.  If I have simply maintained that much muscle, I should have only 33.15 pounds of fat left on my frame.  33.15 / 184.15 = 18.0016%.  18 < 20, and that moves the check-box to the healthy zone.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

I'm going to try this workout tomorrow morning

Just 2 x 20 pound kettlebells and 5 minutes of effort.  I guarantee this will just about kill yer arse if you put your heart & soul into it.  Believe me, it's a lot harder than it looks.

We have just 5 exercises here, each performed for just 60 seconds.  The clock gone bad beeps indicating when you are to switch exercises.  As always, you don't count reps, you go for time.  It's about time, not reps.

  1. Double kettlebell swings
  2. Double front squats
  3. Double presses
  4. Alternate front-leaning rows {I bet you can't do this}
  5. Double snatches

Monday, November 14, 2011

2011 NFL Season, Week 10 Results

It was an absolutely dreadful week.  My record was a paltry 8-7, just one game above .500!  Unbelievable!

It wasn't a good weekend for the ESPN crew either.  Eric Allen beat me with a record of 10-6, and Wickersham edged me with a record of 9-7, but nobody else did.  All our prediction records took a hit this weekend.  Mike Golic brought up the rear with a record of 5-11.  You can see their scores here.

So why the disaster this weekend?  Because we had a few major upsets and some very difficult choices to make this week.  Nobody but nobody expected the Seahawks to beat the Ravens.  Nobody but nobody expected the Cardinals to beat the Eagles in their crib.  Few expected the Broncos to win, but I did.  I don't know why you would pick the Chiefs these days.

There were also tough choices like the Saints vs. Falcons, Jets vs. Patriots, Cowboys vs. Bills, and 49ers vs. Giants. Now the Cowboy game turned out to be shockingly lopsided, and so was the Patriot game, but other than that, we saw close fights.

I will return to my high-percentage ways this coming week, I assure you of that.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Oooppppsss! 2001 Season Week 9 Outcomes

I just realized that I forgot to publish my results from Week 9 of the 2011 NFL Season.  She-yit!  How did I managed to do this?  Well... last week was very busy.  I guess I just forgot.

In any case, my record was 9-5.  Nothing to boast about, but only Eric Allen of ESPN managed to match my record of success.  Everybody else was less accurate than me and Eric.  You can see their picks here for the record.  I am proud that I called both of the big games correctly.  I nailed Ravens v. Steelers and also the Giants v. Patriots.

One of these days I hope to hear from the NFL Network about that software management position.  They can use my gaming-calling skills as an added free bonus.

Ooooppss! Rihanna did it again.

It would appear that Rihanna released a new jam late in October.  The title is "We Found Love".  The full title chorus is we found love in a hopeless place.

I was exposed to it early last week.  This could be the biggest groove monster she has released yet.  Unbelievably infectious!  It borrows a little thunder from Jim Rome's favorite tune, Sandstorm.  I can already tell that I am going to wear this one out just like Rude Boy and S&M.

I tell you, I am going to have to write a piece of high synastry and musical preference soon.

The video is dark.  It deals with quite typical Piscean themes of the struggle with basic pragmatics in life, escapism through drugs, alcohol, and sex.  Being very muscal people, Pisceans frequently compose music about these subjects, and deal with them as a single complex.  Kurt Cobain sure did.    For some reason, the fish seem to struggle with these issues more than anyone else.  For the record, here is the video for "We Found Love".


Just a few moments ago, the score was 187.0 English pounds on the Tanita scale.  The scary thing is that it flickered back and forth between 186.8 and 187.0 half a dozen times before rounding up, as it always does.  Never have I seen the Tanita round down; it's always up.  My scale will only display read-outs in increments of 0.2 pounds, which is sufficient accuracy for a simple bathroom scale.  Presume I am stuck in the middle at 186.9.

Naturally, this means my weight would be lower on the Bod Pod scale; perhaps even lower than 186.0.

I must say, comrade Kettlebellers, that this is pretty scary stuff.  I have never been this low in my entire adult life.  I am looking downright skinny now.  Were it not for the presence of an abundance of lose skin, I would be skinny-skinny.

This continued precipitous drop is puzzling in the face of some basic input/output analysis.

  1. Do you know that I had not one but two Macho Bacon and Egg Burritos yesterday?  According to some rumors that would 2,060 kcal right there.
  2. Further I had two chocolate milk protein drinks, fortified with whey & mega-3 fatty acids.
  3. Further, I enjoyed the hell out of a sizable helping of nachos, with all the fixings: steak, chicken, black beans, salsa, guacamole, sour cream, cheese.
  4. At approximately 151.14 pounds of lean weight, my RMR/BMR is probably right around 1,860.
  5. Aaron and I did a back & biceps workout at approximately 10:00am yesterday morning.  I returned to the apartment afterward and crashed (I slept) on the couch until 2:00pm.
  6. I vegged out on the couch, watching college football, until the end of the Oregon vs. Stanford game.  [What an upset!]  
  7. At that time, I proceeded back out to 24 Hour Fitness where I performed a pretty damn decent aerobics work out: 12 minutes of elliptical (232 kcal), 12 minutes of Olympic rower (152 kcal), 12 minutes of treadmill (142 kcal), and 12 minutes of bike (161 kcal).  In total, this was 48 minutes of work for 687 kcal of energy.
We have only a rough approximation of my BMR/RMR.  We have only a rough approximation of my food-intake.  We have only a loose idea how much energy I expended in exercise.  Still, you would be hard-pressed to argue that those figures balance.  You would suppose I ate more than I burned.  The scale says figures don't balance.  Obviously, I lost weight.  I was in negative figures yesterday

Why such remarkable weight loss?  I have an idea about that.  Yesterday, it occurred to me that the recent cold-snap here in Los Angeles may be factoring into the equation.  In the past two weeks, the Winter has come, to the extent that winter ever arrives in Los Angeles.  We have seen dark overcast skies, lots of rain, some wind, and plenty of 50 degree weather.   That's about as cold as it gets here in la-la land.  The RKC comrades would not be impressed by these temperatures, though.

During this time, I haven't changed my wardrobe that much at all.  I have taken to wearing an Under Armour shirt under my football jerseys, but I am still wearing shorts and a jersey these days.  Yeah, it's a little chilly without my fat-layer to protect me, but I have not caved in.  After the U.S. Army performed unethical human medical experiments on me Germany back in 1990, I swore I would never say it was cold in California again.  Quite frankly, it isn't.

The kiss of this chilly weather may be the explanation for my recent weight loss.  Thermo-energetics are terribly important in biology. They are more important in weight loss than most people would ever admit.   The kcal is just a measure of heat energy, by the way.

Ordinarily, I do lose weight in Winter time.  I know many people are the opposite:  they put on weight during winter.  Not me, I usually lose a few pounds.  Prior to gastric bypass, I was like a bear.  I would fatten up in summer, and lose fat during the winter.

I think half of this long-term pattern continues right up until this moment.  If so, I am pretty excited.  The cold weather--such as it is--should help me to make my ultimate body fat goals a reality.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

2011 NFL Season, Week 10 Predictions

Week 10, the most difficult week of the year thus far, if you ask me.  There are a number of very interesting games on tap for this Sunday.  This schedule should make for some pretty good television drama.  This will truly be a shake-out weekend.

This is not a bye-week.  All 32 teams have been or will be in action.  The first game went down on Thursday night, and I think you all know that Carson Palmer won that game in fairly spectacular fashion for the Oakland Raiders.  Of course, I am too late to the betting window for that game, so here is my slate of picks.

  1. Bills @ Cowboys is an interesting match of two fading teams.  Most experts expect the Cowboys to prevail because the Bills are fading-out.  Believe me, they are not the only ones fading-out.  At the moment, the Bills are ahead of the Cowboys on total-defense and total-offense based on points.  I am going to have to roll with that, picking the Bills against the Cowboys' home-field advantage.
  2. Titans @ Panthers.  The Titans are fading, and they are struggling to score points now.  The Panthers are getting better, and they have not struggled much offensively, due to the horsepower Cam Newton provides.  I am taking the Panthers based on better scoring offense and home field.
  3. Texans @ Bucs is a pretty easy pick if you ask me.  The Bucs are struggling in many ways.  The Texans are beginning to hit on all cylinders.  I am taking the Texans on general superiority.
  4. Jaguars @ Colts.  The Colts have transformed from a an aerial circus offense directed by Peyton Manning to an erstwhile power-running team under Curtis Painter.  The problem is that they can't run.  The Colts are 27th in points scored, a place they never dwell.  Now the Jags are dead-last in points scored, but they also feature the #8 defense by points.  Honestly, if the Colts are going to win one this year, this might be the game, but I don't think they can score enough to win against the #8 defense.
  5. Cardinals @ Eagles is a big mismatch, and the Eagles have home-field also.  The Eagles are anything but the dream team, but the Cardinals are a whole lot worse, especially on the offensive line.
  6. Saints @ Falcons is the first meeting between these NFC South rivals this year.  One team will exit this match-up a contender, the other team will suffer damage to their playoff standing.  If you ask me this is the toughest game to pick on the entire board.  I almost punted by saying "Pick'em".  However, the Falcons are missing their crucial Left-Tackle Sam Baker.  He is out with a back injury.  I think this will be the difference.  I take the Saints.
  7. Rams @ Browns is a match-up of small-fries, and it is very difficult to pick because of that.  Most experts believe the Rams have to be favored because the Browns are suffering the #30 ranked defense against the run.  The Rams have a good line (for the run, at least) and Steven Jackson.  The reason for the Browns defensive problems is obvious.  They have not mastered team defense.  Their gap-discipline breaks down quickly.  They over-pursue a lot.  I am leery of this choice because the Brown are ranked higher than the Rams in points scored and points allowed, but I will make the homer-choice and pick my Rams.
  8. Redskins @ Dolphins features the DOA Redskin offense against a newly resurgent Dolphin defense.  I just don't believe the Redskins can score enough to win in this game.  I take the Dolphins and their home field advantage.
  9. Broncos @ Chiefs features my son, Tim Tebow, against the little girl with the curl. I don't think I have ever seen a Dr. Jeckle and Mr. Hyde team quite like these Kansas City Chiefs.  When they are good, they are very, very good.  When they are bad, they are horrid.  This is the most inconsistent football team in the entire NFL.  They just laid a stinker against the Dolphins last week, and I cannot pick them with any degree of comfort this week.  I think Tebow wins again.
  10. Steelers @ Bengals.  Quick reality check for you:  Did you know the Bengals are currently the #1 seed in the AFC tournament at this stage of the season?  They have the #3 ranked defense, and they have a rookie QB/WR tandem that is the best in NFL history.  I think the Bengals are going to step up this week and make a political statement at home.
  11. Ravens @ Seahawks seems like a mismatch, but we have seen the Ravens look exhausted after victory over the Steelers before this season.  I worry about this match up because of the tremendous home field advantage the Seahawks enjoy in Qwest Field.  However, the Seahawks are a vastly inferior football team when compared to the Ravens.  I still believe the Ravens are the most powerful football team in the AFC.  I am taking the Ravens.
  12. Lions @ Bears is a really pesky match-up.  Those Bears... those fricken' pesky Bears...  They don't seem set to do anything this season, but they hang around and upset people who should beat them.  I believe the Lions are a vastly better team, so I am taking the Lions, but I will be monitoring this one closely.
  13. Giants @ 49ers is the game of the week if you ask me.  I doubt the Saints and the Falcons can match up with the Packers.  For some reason, I expect the Packers' chief rival for the NFC crown to emerge from this football game.  It seems like old times.  The Giants and the 49ers were once a premiere match up back in the 1980s and early 1990s.  Now it is again.  This game could go either way, but I expect the 49ers to prevail because of their [H]ardcore defense.  Did you know that the 49er defense is #1 in the league by points allowed.  Furthermore, Matt Millen says they have the best front-seven in the league.  Expect a low-scoring brutal grudge-match reminding us all of the 1990 NFC championship game.
  14. Patriots @ Jets is a rematch, and the final meeting between these two in the regular season.  In the first game, the Patriots prevailed 30-21.  I do not believe the Patriots have what it takes to sweep the Jets, and not on their home field.  I am taking the Jets.
  15. Vikings @ Packers is another mis-match.  I am taking the Packers in the easiest choice on the board.