Sunday, January 20, 2013

Nurse the Hate: Take A Chance

I managed to go 0-4 last week betting NFL games.  This is actually more difficult to do than going 4-0. By dumb luck you will usually win one game.  You can't lose all four.  It doesn't happen.  Well, it generally doesn't happen.  I can't ever recall accomplishing a feat like this in all my years of wagering on things I clearly know nothing about.  Hell, I couldn't go 0-4 betting hockey and I can't even name a single player in the NHL.  Yet, here I am ready to go today.  I am now completely without confidence in my opinion on these two games, and have over thought them to the point of total confusion.  The smart play would be to load up on NyQuil and let the good times roll over me like a nice syrupy wave.  I have no business making a wager on anything right now, yet with only three games remaining in the season, I feel like I have to see this thing through.  This is, of course, my first mistake.

When I was a kid, I used to walk up to the playground at the elementary school by my house with friends.  We would ride the swings, and push ourselves higher and higher.  I remember swinging high enough to become level with the top bar that affixed the swings.  There would be a slight bump as you free fell after you reached your highest point.  That soon wore off as being the Ultimate Thrill, and we then began jumping off the swings as high as we could get them.  What an amazing feeling to be arching through the air at a height you could never reach otherwise.  To even attempt that today would result in broken ankles and fused vertebrae.  I would be in physical therapy for months, celebrating hobbling ten feet with a nice cup of pudding.

On one particular day I was kicking ass on the swings.  Three of us were swinging our little hearts out. We made the plan to jump off at the same time.  The move would be that you would position your hands behind the chains of the swing and use that to help you launch.  The problem was that Robert to my left freaked out and decided not to jump when we got to the top .  Therefore, I also decided not to jump.  I wasn't going to be made a fool of and jump alone for God's sake!  What I didn't take into account when I made that decision was that nothing was now tethering me to the swing.  I recognized I was in a bit of a predicament as I fell out during the back swing, my arms behind me unable to help break my fall in the dust and rocks.  I had a split second of recognition when I knew what an awful error I had made.  The fall from the swing took forever.  I landed awkwardly and hurt myself in rather spectacular fashion.

Today I feel much like I did when I fell out of that swing.  I want to brace for the inevitable impact, but I can't.  I am in free fall.  Come join me.  Flame out by taking Baltimore +8, Atlanta +4.5, and tease them both for Baltimore +14/Atlanta +10.5.  It's going to be great!  Wait...  Maybe I should take New England -8, San Francisco -4.5 and tease both of them at New England -2/San Fran +1.5?  Yeah, that's better...  Or maybe not...  How about New England -2/Atlanta +10.5?  Jesus, I don't know.  Somebody give me some guidance...  OK, I'm on Atlanta +10.5/New England -1.5.  That's it.  I'm taking a chance.

Johnny Cash Project:  Disc 31 Any Old Wind That Blows has some of those awful elements from the early 1970s singer songwriter period with string sections, and limp songs.  "Oney" is an OK "working man" song.  There's a pretty groovy version of "If I Had A Hammer" that sounds like the Partridge Family might be playing backup.  The songs are weak on this, with "Kentucky Straight" and "Country Trash" some of the worst Cash originals out there.  Disc 32 and 33 is The Gospel Road.  This double album from the movie dedicated to Jesus life is a bigger version of The Holy Land and really tested my commitment to this harebrained idea.  If you ever wanted to go to Sunday School and have Johnny Cash as your teacher, let me direct you towards this.  How many times can you tell the same story like he is with these gospel records?  Somebody must have bought these, because Columbia kept putting them out.  My guess is that every single used copy of this floating around out there is in almost perfect condition because it would have only been played once.  It did go to #12 on the Country album chart, which is astounding.  Disc 34 Johnny Cash and His Woman has what may be the most annoying Cash single of all time "Allegheny".  June is making a wild shriek and throaty laugh through the whole thing.  It is absolutely cringe worthy.  "The City of New Orleans" is really good, as is the Cash original "Saturday Night In Hickman County".  Disc 35 Pa Osteraker is a really good live show from a Swedish prison.  There are plenty of new lonesome prisoner songs on it played with his core band.  "Orleans Parish Prison", "Jacob Green", "City Jail", and "Nobody Cared" are right in his wheelhouse.  If you dig the Folsom and San Quentin records, this will be a great addition.  This one is a hidden jewel in his catalogue.  Disc 36 Ragged Old Flag has some of the mid seventies concerns in the song topics; ecology, lost sense of patriotism, and a lost sense of purpose.  "Don't Go Near The Water" is a unique vibe amongst Cash songs.  "All I Do Is Drive" is a cool truck driving song.  "Please Don't Let Me Out" about an old prisoner.  These are all Cash originals, and while not his best work, it's good to see some focused songwriting back from Cash.   Disc 37 The Junkie And The Juicehead Minus Me is a movie soundtrack that you really don't need.  The title track is OK, but there's shit like "Ole Slewfoot" and Rosanne Cash songs on this.  The best thing about this is how short it is.  Disc 38 The Johnny Cash Children's Album is a confusing mess.  Who the hell makes  a children's record where a guy shoots his dog?  ("Old Shep")  This is really a collection of simple adult songs with a couple kiddie tunes tacked on ("Dinosaur Song" and "The Timber Man").  This album pretty much blows except for "Nasty Dan". 


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