Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Hue Jackson Speaks!

Oakland Raiders offensive coordinator Hue Jackson spoke his mind to the media recently. He'd been quiet throughout training camp and the first two exhibition games. If you're a Raiders fan you'll like what he has to say about the Raiders. If you're a hater, you'll have more to hate about the Silver & Black this season. Hue is helping to create a Monster Bully in Oaktown:

I’ve watched this team get better. Everything I’ve asked these young men to do, they’ve done. I try not to go back to what has happened here. What I’ve seen is that this is a fine, fine organization, led by a fine man in Al Davis. We’ve got a good head coach in Tom Cable.

“I see an opportunity here for us to get the Raiders back on the winning side. There’s a confidence about this football team. It permeates everywhere. It’s not just our team — it’s in the equipment room, it’s in the weight room, it’s with our media people. It’s everywhere.”

This is a different time in Raider football, said Jackson. He said the players have embraced his attitude and what he is looking for out of the offense.

“The bottom line is that we want to win and we expect to win here. There’s an expectation here. The Raiders are supposed to win, and that is our expectation and that’s what we’re going to do.

“This is a dream come true for me.”

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Economic Rebirth 1933 Style

If there's one thing President Barack Obama has in common with the late President Franklin D. Roosevelt, its the depressed economic times of their presidencies.

As we citizens of the United States continue to struggle with and adjust from the damages of corporate greed, housing market and financial institution instability, record unemployment, unaffordable healthcare and environmental concerns, let us not forget that there was a leader of our nation who once warned during such dark times.

"We Have Nothing To Fear But Fear Itself"

Franklin D. Roosevelt

Elected President of the United States

“The money changers have fled from their high seats in the temple of our civilization. We may now restore that temple to the ancient truths. The measure of the restoration lies in the extent to which we apply social values more noble than mere monetary profit.

“Happiness lies not in the mere possession of money; it lies in the joy of achievement, in the thrill of creative effort. The joy and moral stimulation of work no longer must be forgotten in the mad chase of evanescent profits. These dark days will be worth all they cost us if they teach us that our true destiny is not to be ministered unto but to minister to ourselves and to our fellow men.”

Inaugural Address, March 1933

Thursday, August 26, 2010

SF Giants Let History & Game Slip Away

Giants infielder Juan Uribe smacks a three run homer

It was a classic day at AT&T park Wednesday afternoon both weather-wise and baseball-wise. On a balmy day following a northern california heat wave, the San Francisco Giants would score in double digits for the third straight time. Would it be enough?
It would be a see-saw of emotions draining the tank of the average fan on this day. I'd suffered through losing a starting pitcher in just three innings as well as seeing the visiting Cincinnati Reds score ten runs, many escorted toward homeplate by Giants errors.

Then something amazing started to occur at the plate. The Giants began hitting and scoring a few runs giving us fans a pinch of comeback hope. As the later innings started rolling around Giants hitting got down right contagious. Juan Uribe capped a six run eigth inning with a three run homer and the scoreboard glowed 10-8.

Then through the ninth and into the twelth the Giants and Reds battled like two hungry lions over a gazelle. The Giants feeling the bulge of a historic comeback in their back pocket were looking for a three game series sweep while the Reds were just trying to avoid league embarassment. There'd been another horrendous comeback earlier in the day and the Reds wanted no part of that headline.

The SF Chronicle captures the peak of Giants excitement best:

Cincinnati took advantage of balls carrying on an abnormally warm day and Bumgarner's poor pitch location to take a 10-1 lead through 4 1/2 innings. Bumgarner yielded eight runs, including three first-inning homers, in 2 2/3 innings.
The Giants, however, scored two runs in the fifth and had a minor celebration after cutting the deficit to 10-5 in the sixth. The minor celebration turned into a near-euphoric party in the eighth, when they took an 11-10 lead.

In the end though, history would take a back seat to torturous heartbreak as the Giants surrendered the Reds winning run in the twelth and lost the game 12-11. I left the ballpark feeling as if I'd seen a double-header where the Giants won the first game and lost the second.

So what positives can a Giants fan take from this gut-wrenching day? We Got Hitting!

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Raiders Bounce Da' Bears in PreSeason

Oakland Raiders go into Chicago and prove they're much better than the average bear. You can probably count on one hand the times the Raiders have put up 32 points in any game over the past few seasons. The Raiders showed us a little bit of everything in this second week of preseason. They had moments of dominance, moments of breakdown and moments of greatness all in a 32-17 win that probably couldn't have happened a year ago.

The Raiders offense, defense and special teams all showed that they can make a difference in a game. They took advantage of Bears miscues as well as bouncing back from mistakes of their own.

Its only week 2 of the exhibition season, but anyone watching the Raiders can easily see that this team has come out of that losing hibernation they've been in for eons. The coaches are coaching, the players are executing and the referees are actually treating them like they've buried the ax they've been grinding against them for so long.

Maybe, just maybe, this year will be different for more reasons than just a winning record. Next up are the bay area rival Forty-Niners, facing a hungry Raider Nation fan base at the Oakland Coliseum.

I wouldn't miss this one for the world!

Friday, August 20, 2010

Tenderloin District

My neighborhood in San Francisco has always been a bit of an attraction to outsiders for many different reasons. I mean come'on, where else can you see a one-legged prostitute cursing out a one-armed crack addict? But those days have begun to be a thing of the past.

Nowadays, "The Loin," as we residents call it, has experienced a gentrification wave that probably would've gone through the roof if not for the economic downturn. Whew!

A day spent hanging out in the loin will leave anyone with a story or two to tell friends. Why just two days ago I'm coming down Leavenworth and see the street, loaded with police vehicles and cordoned off with yellow tape. Instead of turning and going another direction, because after all it is the loin, I rush curiously to the scene to see what's up. I come upon two huge military style vans with the words BOMB SQUAD printed boldly on their sides. I see sniffing german shepherd police dogs being led car to car checking for explosives. I hear policeman telling the largely gathered crowd to continue moving one way or another. People are talking, police are everywhere and it seems the focus is one building in particular on Leavenworth and Turk.

I choose not to hang around for the explosive action that may or may not occur.

I've always wondered just how the neighborhood acquired the name Tenderloin District. I assumed it was due to the history of crime and vice that took place here. Then yesterday, while watching the movie "Legend of 1900" I hear mention of prostitution houses in the sleezy tenderloin district of New Orleans as the place where jazzman Jelly Roll Morton learned his piano playing craft.

So to make a long story less lengthy, I give you a mixture of fact and legend about my neighborhood "The Loin," as documented by wikipedia's no-it-alls:


The Tenderloin is a neighborhood in downtown San Francisco, California.

The Tenderloin is a dense downtown neighborhood located in the flatlands on the southern slope of Nob Hill, nestled between the Union Square shopping district to the northeast and the Civic Center office district to the southwest. It encompasses about fifty square blocks and a conservative description has it bounded on the north by Post Street, on the east by Mason Street, on the south by Mission Street and on the west by Van Ness Avenue and Ninth Street. The northern boundary with Lower Nob Hill historically has been set at Geary Street, although many recent arrivals to San Francisco consider the range as far north as Pine Street in western sections of the Tenderloin, such as the Polk Gulch neighborhood.

The extension of the Tenderloin south of Market Street in the vicinity of Sixth, Seventh, and Mission Streets is known locally as Mid-Market and is "Skid Row," or sarcastically as "the Wine Country," an allusion to "winos" (street-dwelling alcoholics). The northern part of it beginning at Post Street is called a variety of names, including Tenderloin Heights, Lower Nob Hill (widely used in real estate listings) or The Tendernob. The eastern extent, where it meets Union Square is known as the Theater District. Part of the western extent of the Tenderloin, Larkin and Hyde Streets between Turk and O'Farrell, was officially named "Little Saigon" by the City of San Francisco.

[edit] History

The Ambassador Hotel is a neighborhood renovated single room occupancy building that sits on the Eastern edge of the Tenderloin.

There are a number of stories about how the Tenderloin got its name. One is that it is a reference to an older neighborhood in New York with the same name and similar characteristics. Another is a reference to the neighborhood as the "soft underbelly" (analogous to the cut of meat) of the city, with allusions to vice and corruption, especially graft. There are also some legends about the name, probably folklore, including that the neighborhood earned its name from the words of a New York City police captain, Alexander S. Williams, who was overheard saying that when he was assigned to another part of the city, he could only afford to eat chuck steak on the salary he was earning, but after he was transferred to this neighborhood he was making so much money on the side soliciting bribes that now he could eat tenderloin instead.[2][3] Another version of that story says that the officers that worked in the Tenderloin received a "hazard pay" bonus for working in such a violent area, and that is how they were able to afford the good cut of meat. Yet another story, also likely apocryphal, is that the name is a reference to the sexual parts of prostitutes (i.e., "loins").

Full story continued

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Bulls Still Running In Spain

Here's some interesting footage of a Bull in northern Spain who jumped into the stands and began harassing the paying customers.

It was little more than a month ago that the annual running of the bullls took place in Pamplona, Spain. My guess is that this bull participated in the Pamplona run and spotted someone in the stands yesterday who'd taunted him in the streets of Pamplona then got away. The bull saw red when hearing those same taunts coming from that same spectator now giving him hell in the stands. It was time to settle the score. It was bad bull gotcha time!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Movie Review: Sunshine

The movie Sunshine follows three generations of a Jewish family in the first half of 20th century Hungary. It tracks the family's loves, successes, secrets and tragedies as they struggle to continue living traditionally as their jewish forefathers did in a place and time of mounting dislike and
distrust of the jews.

Sunshine is a story that needed to be told. It seems to be part fact and part fiction in telling the struggle of Hungary as a nation through the eyes of one family. It highlights the see-saw relationship of the Hungarian government with their Jewish citizens through both world wars and a revolution.

For any people who's national government has been reluctant to impart equal citizenship to them based on religious and cultural reasons or institutes laws that limit their freedom and protection, this movie is a reminder that others have shared and continue to suffer the same injustice. At a time when Hungary was in bed with Hitler's Germany, Hungarian jews suffered.

I believe the final message in Sunshine is to love and cherish family. To appreciate the family sacrifices of past generations that helped mold you into a righteously loving individual and hold strong to whatever faith you practice so that in the end you can die knowing you lived a truthful and fear-free life. Above all, Know Thyself!

The movie clip below is of a grandson reading a letter that was written to his father by his grandfather many years before. Its the best advice I've ever heard a father give a son.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

49ER'S Win Triggers New Stadium Developments

After blowing out the defending AFC Champion Indianapolis Colts 37-17 in today's exhibition game, the San Francisco 49ers were feeling their oats and wanted to send a strong message to all opposition.

They began immediately after the game by sending their red and gold clad negotiator, along with some tough looking advisers, down to a Santa Clara establishment who's reported to be holding up new stadium contracts with the city and county of Santa Clara.

A Raider Nation News correspondent happened to be dining at the establishment when the 49ers representative, sporting a gold-digger vest and red elmer fudd-like fedora, burst in and threatened the owner. Our courageous correspondent's pride and poise outweighed his fears of the 49ers hit squad as he was able to discreetly videotape the absurd demand accompanied by threats of a destructive return by nightfall.

Here we have a clip of the incident as taped earlier, with follow-up coverage later as this story develops:

Thursday, August 12, 2010

SF Giants Pat (The Bat) Burrell

The San Francisco Giants are in a playoff race and at least one player is proving to be consistently productive in the clutch.

Read about Giants outfielder Pat Burrell's exciting day that included a tie breaking grand slam home run and other Giants heroes in today's 8-7 win over the Chicago Cubs.


In mathematics, the Fibonacci numbers are the numbers in the following sequence:

0, 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21, 34, 55, 89, 144, .....

What's so damn extraordinary about the Fibonacci Sequence is that its found in the nature of plants and animals. Its also believed that the ancient Incas used it in their calculations. Today it is used in algorithms and other computer calculating programs.

By definition, the first two Fibonacci numbers are 0 and 1, and each subsequent number is the sum of the previous two. Some sources omit the initial 0, instead beginning the sequence with two 1s.

A simple definition of this mathematical phenomenon as follows:

The recurring sums are arrived at by adding the sums of the previous two equations.


And then it gets much deeper..................Nature Deep!

Preseason 1st-Half: DEEEFENSE

Game Update: Raiders score 17 in fourth quarter in comeback to defeat Cowboys 17-9. A 50-yard interception return by Raiders safety Jerome Boyd was beautiful.

The Oakland Raiders and the Dallas Cowboys Thursday night preseason game score is 0-3 with the Cowboys leading. Both teams are showing aggressive defense with the Raiders posting five sacks to Dallas' one.

Being that this is the Raiders first game and the Cowboys second, I'd say the Oakland Raiders are on schedule in their rebuilding phase. I hope to see improvement in receivers and running backs before the end of the preseason.

First Downs5
Total Yards95
Passing Yards40
Rushing Yards55
Penalties (Yds)4(24)
Punts (AVG)4(41)
Time of Pos.12:50

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Al Speaks of Future Greatness

Raiders majority owner Al Davis spoke of the the Raiders past and the Raiders present with pride and poise. In comparing this newly assembled Raiders team to the 1980 team that won it all, Al has stated what is obvious to Raiders fans; a good change has come and we're on the cusp of greatness once again.

We Raiders fans may not always agree with Al and his ways, but there's one unquestionable fact we know to be true about Big Al; he wants the Raiders to be great and is as starved as the rest of us for a Super Bowl win.

When Al spoke on Sirius radio with host Gil Brandt today he focused on the transition that the 1980 and 2010 teams went through. Al believes, and there's no reason for us to doubt it, that the Oakland Raiders of 2010 will begin their trek to greatness immediately. He didn't quite say it in those words but upon hearing his comparisons of a Raiders Super Bowl winning team to this year's team, I interpreted his meaning as a winning season and potential Super Bowl appearance this season.

We Raiders fans have seen something this season that we haven't seen in the past losing seasons and possibly have never seen. We've seen the "Humbling of Al" the football guru. Al wants to win so bad that he's actually listening to advisers and taking the advice of those in his circle. At 81 years old Big Al has finally learned what lawyers have known since Socrates. "Only a fool retains himself as a lawyer."

The Greatness of the Raiders 2010!

Sunday, August 08, 2010

A Hall Of Fame Speech

There's really no words to describe the heartfelt delivery of Emmitt Smith's NFL "Hall Of Fame" induction speech.

Many men have given their HOF thanks in various ways, but the eloquence and execution of Emmitt's speech deserves an award all its own. We know his family is proud of him because we saw them their witnessing what we and the rest of the world saw with amazement; a man giving his sincere thanks to God, family and all those that helped make his dream of becoming the best man he could be.

Congratulations Emmitt Smith on making all of us proud and happy for you.

Saturday, August 07, 2010

Congratulations HOF'er #80 Jerry Rice

Always Striving For Perfection!
Always Making Clutch Receptions!
Always Immaculate Wardrobe Collection!

#80 Hall-Of-Fame Selection

Always A Raider Connection!

Sunday, August 01, 2010

SF Giants Sweeeeep dodgers 3 Games

On a day where a sea of orange and black clad Giants fans, many carrying brooms over their shoulder, flooded into AT&T Park to watch their mudville-9 sweep the L.A. dodgers out of town, the game of baseball officially took hold of the city by the bay and shook awake a sleeping Giant.

The San Francisco Giants are in the conversation when it comes to MLB Playoffs 2010, and the fans are coming out of hibernation to cheer them on. Not since the Bonds home run record chasing era has there been so much excitement brewing at AT&T Park and the city that never sleeps.

After losing 2-0 today, the L.A. Dodgers slowly dusted themselves off and shuffled along to their next opponent with the sting of a Giants 3-Game-Sweep in their craw. Giants starting pitcher Matt Cain finally got a win over the Dodgers after going 0-8 in his young career. Happy Birthday to Giants Pitcher Madison Baumgardner who turned 21 today.

Here's a little music to accompany the Dodgers as they hustle out of town:

San Diego6142.592-33-2228-20448357+91Won 16-4
San Francisco6145.5751.533-2028-25469385+84Won 38-2
Colorado5550.524735-1820-32509465+44Won 44-6
LA Dodgers5451.514832-2122-30459454+5Lost 54-6
Arizona3966.3712324-2915-37479591-112Won 12-8