Tag Archives: Alex Smith

Thinking about death after a trip to the cemetery. The Giants and 49ers look awesome. And Alan Grayson, stirring it up again against Walmart

In between Thanksgiving meals, Thanksgiving leftovers, having my annual Thanksgiving weekend dinner with old friends and all that, I went to two cemeteries last week.

No one I knew died recently; I just went to visit my grandparents. Hadn’t been to their graves in a long time (they’ve all been dead for at least 10 years), but something made me want to visit.

Cemeteries are a strange, strange place. Very quiet, and very still, and especially when you’re there by yourself, you sometimes feel a little silly standing there talking to a piece of granite for a few minutes.

But I think it’s important to visit people who were once so important in your lives, even if they can’t really hear or see you anymore. So I talked to them, and told them about some of the milestones in my life they’d missed: the college I graduated from, the career I had as a journalist, my marriage that failed and the one that’s upcoming that I’m so excited about.

It felt good, almost like visiting an old friend. I wish Larry Lewis and Ruth Lewis and Don Kouvant were still here, to meet my fiance and one day meet some more grandkids.

I miss them very much, but cherish the time I had with them. As I was leaving, I promised them I’d come back and visit soon.

I hope I remember to honor my word.

**While still trying to swallow the bile from the Jets’ loss last Thursday (you know it’s bad when even Fireman Ed decides to quit, I took in some good football Sunday. My usual Monday ramblings…

— Now that looked like the Super Bowl champs on Sunday night. The Giants got their swagger back, Eli looked like Eli again, and they even looked like they could run the ball a little. I’m sure Giants fans will still find ways to complain about Eli, though; funniest thing I heard in a while was last week on WFAN, a caller started his point with “I’m not a big Eli fan, I know he won two Super Bowls … and the Jets fan-host, Joe Benigno, practically sputtered, “You know, I wish I could ever get to a point with my team where I say I’m not that big a fan of a guy who won me two Super Bowls!”

Don’t worry Joe, it won’t ever happen.

— I think Jim Harbaugh is crazy for yanking Alex Smith in the midst of a terrific winning season, but man, this Colin Kaepernick kid looks pretty good. Never thought I’d say this, but maybe the Jets can get Alex Smith for next year?

— I know a lot of obnoxious Steelers fans, so it was nice seeing Charlie Batch and friends screw up so royally Sunday.
— Only a Norv Turner-coached team can give up a 4th and 29 in the 4th quarter. I love me some Norv.

**If you follow politics fairly closely, you probably remember Alan Grayson. He’s a liberal Democrat from Florida who had a pretty eventful one-term in Congress a few years ago, standing up to Republicans, and the Iraq War, but got himself into a whole heap of trouble when he called his 2010 opponent “Taliban Dan” and ended up losing his seat.

Basically, Grayson is someone I admire for speaking his mind, but he goes a little too far sometimes. On Thanksgiving, though, I loved what Grayson did.

Just elected to the House again from a different district, Grayson spent his Turkey Day at a Florida Walmart, handing out turkey sandwiches and reminding Walmart employees how badly they’re treated by not being allowed to unionize. Most Walmart “associates” make around $10 an hour, by the way.

So Grayson gave each employee a paper bag that had three things in it: A turkey sandwich, a bag of chips, and a letter explaining their right to organize.

Much to my shock (yeah, right), Grayson was thrown out of the building.

OK, it was a stunt, but it certainly was worth a try. And the fact that one of the largest employers in America refuses to let its own employees bargain for rights, and get needed protection, is just one of the many, many reasons I am disgusted by Walmart.

The Golden Globes entertain me once again. A crazy NFL weekend capped by Giants upset. And an update on MJ’s coach

The Golden Globes were Sunday night, and I love a good Hollywood awards show (go ahead and threaten to take away my “man card,” I don’t care.) The Globes this year weren’t all that terrific, but that didn’t stop me from having some thoughts; some nice, some not so nice.
— Ricky Gervais wasn’t anywhere near as mean as last year. But he also wasn’t that funny. He had one or two decent jokes in the monologue but nothing memorable.
— Is there a better Hollywood couple than William H. Macy and Felicity Huffman? Their intro was very cute.
— Great seeing Madonna, but her arms looked really scary.
— So happy that “Homeland” cleaned up, with Claire Danes winning best actress and the show winning best drama. I’ve said it several times before: Watch this show if at all possible.
— Harrison Ford, God bless him, looks like death warmed over.
— Reese Witherspoon (above) and Charlize Theron looked amazing.
— Seth Rogen got the biggest laugh by admitting, standing next to Kate Beckinsdale, that he was currently “hiding the biggest erection.”
— Wondering how a silent movie like “The Artist” can be nominated for best screenplay. There were no words!
— Very tough call: Which role will Morgan Freeman most be remembered for? “Driving Miss Daisy” or “Shawshank?” I say “Shawshank.”

**Wild, wild weekend in the NFL playoffs. Lots to digest, so some quick-hitting thoughts on the games from a man who was once again reminded to never, ever, ever wager money on the outcome of a football game:

— Shockingly dominant win by the Giants. Big Blue did whatever they wanted to Green Bay’s putrid defense, which isn’t as shocking. But the fact that they forced three Packers turnovers and held Aaron Rodgers basically in check was pretty stunning.
Amazing that the Giants were basically given up for dead at 7-7 in Week 15, and now are 60 minutes from the Super Bowl. It’s looking very much like 2007 all over again.
— Insanely exciting finish to 49ers-Saints Saturday night; I got home from dinner just in time to see the fourth quarter. Four TDs in a the last five minutes? And who knew Alex Smith had such clutch play in him? There should be NO hands up, since the football world had long since given up on him before this year.
— Very surprised that Baltimore struggled so much with Houston; thought that one would be a blowout. I’m not so sure the Ravens offense can keep up the the Pats’ juggernaut next week, but it should be a heck of a game.
— I don’t want to hear the name “Tim Tebow” for a while now. That’s agreed upon by all, right? He was a great story but even Tebow-lovers have to be sick of him by now.

–On a personal note, if the Giants win next week that’ll be 5 Super Bowl appearances by them in my lifetime as a Jets fan. Appearances by the Jets in my lifetime? Zero.
Yep, I definitely chose correctly back when I was 6.

**So a few days ago I linked to a great story by Sports Illustrated writer Thomas Lake on Clifton “Pop” Herring, who in the early 1980s coached Michael Jordan at Laney High School in Wilmington, N.C. It was a great story because it once and for all punctured the crazy myth that MJ was cut from his high school team. Herring, who has suffered from mental illness for years, finally was vindicated.

Yet, the same week Herring’s story was finally told to a national audience, he’s dealing with fame for a very different reason. This is bizarre, but Herring was arrested Friday after a dead body was found at a home where he was living. Herring isn’t being charged with murder, but with resisting arrest.
As of now the facts are still unclear, but it doesn’t look good for Pop.

Crazy to think that a week ago, this guy was still basically anonymous. Now he’s been in two major news stories in the span of a few days.