Tag Archives: The Brady Bunch

A few days late, thoughts on the awesome Spelling Bee. RIP, Alice from “The Brady Bunch.” And the perfect graphic for/against Derek Jeter

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Game 7, overtime, Blackhawks-Kings. Nuts. And L.A. wins it. So now we know it’s Rangers- Kings, starting on Wednesday. Should be a whole lotta fun. New York vs. L.A., Marian Gaborik against his old team, maybe the two best goalies in the world going head-to-head… can’t wait till Wednesday.

So one of my favorite events of any kind in any year is the National Spelling Bee, and every year since I”ve had this here blog thingy I’ve written about the Bee, its awesome contestants, and everything associated with it.

Alas, this year the Bee happened during Game 6 of Rangers-Canadiens, and so I didn’t get to see the coolest “smart kid” competition of them all until this weekend.
My father-in-law thought I was “very weird” for watching a Spelling Bee on DVR, but he just doesn’t get it.

Some thoughts, a few days late, on the craziness of the Bee and the first co-champions in 52 years:

— OK, first of all, every year ESPN tries a little bit harder to make these kids seem cool. But this year, man, they went SO over the top trying. Those skits/vignettes with the spellers dressed up in weird costumes, set to current music? And the whole skit with Dr. Bailly, the awesome pronouncer, yelling at the kids that “it’s Bee Day!”

Bless your heart, ESPN, for trying to make our spellers look like cool kids. but they’re not, they know they’re not, WE know they’re not. But I’m glad you try.

— Is it me, or has this thing gotten way friendlier and more casual this year? The sentences Dr. Bailly’s reading out as part of the definitions were funny, lots of times, and filled with pop-culture references, like “Breaking Bad” and lyrics from Kelis. And all the kids say “hi” to Dr. Bailly before spelling their word! Man, I remember when this competition was more cold-blooded.

— Still my favorite thing about the Bee: When a kid sounds out a word, basically guesses, gets it right, then comes back to the chair and gives the other kids a look like “I didn’t know it!” Happened a few times Thursday.

— Jacob. Jacob, Jacob, Jacob. This kid’s in the Bee Hall of Fame off his theatrics in the finals, isn’t he?

–Finally, I’m so glad this is on national TV every year. It’s always riveting; I mean, co-champions, with each kid nailing incredibly difficult words in the last few minutes? Great drama. And for once, it shows young people with no athletic ability or “musical talent” in a positive light, for millions to emulate. I know it’s corny, but I love it.

**Very sad to hear that Ann B. Davis, Alice of “The Brady Bunch” died Sunday at age 88. She will always be remembered as Alice, the housekeeper who for some reason got brought along on family vacations with the Bradys (she threw her back out in Hawaii, who could forget that?), never could get Sam the Butcher to commit, and in the end got replaced by some chick named Kate.

I always loved her little shopping list chalkboard, and her genuine enthusiasm for every Brady kid triumph.
Ah, Alice, you’ll be missed.

Jeterscoutingreport

**Finally today, this made me laugh out loud, pretty hard. Derek Jeter is beloved by  Yankees fans, hated by everyone else, and generally acknowledged to be the kind of player whose greatness is always talked about in intangibles, like “he’s a winner,” or “he plays the game right.”

It drives quite a few people nuts, including Joe Posnanski, who laughed at this “scouting report” graphic posted about Jeter before a game last week.

So he wrote a column about it, and it’s hysterical, especially the “conversation on the mound” part.
It’s Monday, and you need a good laugh. Click here.

Mitt Romney, pissing off Americans AND Canadians. The best last paragraph of a story you’ll read this week. And R.I.P., Davy Jones

Mitt Romney just can’t help himself. The most un-loved presidential politician of the era, Romney seems to stick his foot in his giant, talks-out-of-both-sides mouth every time it opens.
It seems to happen especially when Mitt’s fired up and happy, like he was Wednesday night after squeaking out the Michigan primary. Here’s what Mitt said about his plans as president, as it relates to the currently-blocked Keystone XL Pipeline which would flow from Alberta to the U.S.

“I’ll get us that oil from Canada that we deserve,” he told a roaring crowd.
There are so, so many things wrong with that statement. First of all, who the hell is Mitt Romney to say what America deserves? Second, it’s Canada’s oil, you dumb schmuck, so why do we deserve it? And third, haven’t we taken enough from Canada? We took some of their hockey teams, won’t let them have the Stanley Cup for the last 20 years; we steal their comedians, we make fun of their accents, and now we’re going to steal their oil, too??? Plus it sounds like Mitt is planning an invasion into the Great White North, too.

Hasn’t Canada suffered enough? Maybe we can send Romney up there to run for prime minister to torture them some more.

**You know, sometimes you have to read all the way to the end of a story for the best part. I got a huge kick out of the last paragraph of this story, about the oddness of having a Leap Day birthday. The story was written by a Reuters writer named Barbara Goldberg, and it starts harmlessly enough.

” Some people devote their lives to ending world hunger, some to lifting children from poverty, and still others to getting Leap Day the respect it deserves.”

And it goes from there, with no strangeness or twists. But then here’s the last paragraph:
“For most people, February 29 is a quirky extra day to enjoy life but for at least one person it’s Doomsday. Arizona death row inmate Robert Henry Moormann, 63, is scheduled to be executed on Leap Day for beating, stabbing and strangling his adoptive mother and dismembering her body during a “compassionate furlough” from prison to visit her in 1984.”

I mean, WOW. Where the hell did that come from? I love it. I’m not convinced Goldberg didn’t just make that up to see if anyone was still reading to the end.

**Finally today, the world lost one of the great singing matinee idols of all time on Wednesday. Davy Jones, the cute boy from the Monkees, died. Just listened to “Daydream Believer” on YouTube. Damn, you have to admit the Monkees could sing pretty well.
Still, for those of us too young to remember the Monkees when they were at their most famous, our enduring image of Davy will probably be this, from a classic episode of “The Brady Bunch.”

(We can ignore that it’s slightly creepy that Davy is asking for kisses from a junior high school girl, right? Right?)