Friday, July 30, 2004

Oddly enough, I made mention of playing more ESPN NFL 2K5 so that I could write a review of it, and I haven't played it this week. Granted, the amount of crap I've had to do this week (this evening was the only evening that I didn't have something "scheduled", and we went grocery shopping anyway) may have had something to do with it, but I've been finding better use with other things. I don't think this would have been the case with Madden. Just a few more early things that make me feel that 2K5 was a good $20 game, but not a Madden replacement.

One of the products picked up tonight? Ocean Spray Juice & Tea - White Cranberry & Peach. Highly recommended. I could drink the whole bottle right now.

So, regular readers (both of you) would expect a Ricky Williams column out of the latest events. However, it's not even worth the time to do a column. Ricky Williams had a job. What it comes down to is that Ricky Williams didn't want to do his job anymore. With his financial situation, he felt he could retire, and he could probably live comfortably for the rest of his life. His decision to retire I have absolutely no problem with.

HOWEVER, it's the manner in which he did so that bothers me most. Williams gave no notice; he just quit. Several sources have stated that Ricky's decision was not out of nowhere, that he had mentioned to others that he was unhappy playing football and was going to retire soon, although most assumed he would play this season. By waiting the time that he did, however, Williams screwed over his former employer, who could have replaced him with a much more qualified candidate hadhe made his actions known even one week earlier.

Professional job courtesy says that you give two weeks notice before leaving an employer, to allow them to adequately replace you or make adjustments to your leaving. Ricky Williams did no such thing, and to say that he can do whatever he wants and we can't say a word is condoning immature action. The Miami Dolphins did nothing to cause ill will towards them from Ricky's prospective. If anything, they made him feel more welcome than they needed to. His head coach stuck up for him when others were calling him a head case. The team made a great sacrifice in order to get his services. The team restructured a contract they didn't need to restructure so that Ricky Williams could earn more money than his poorly written rookie contract would have given him.

Ricky's repayment? "I quit." And not only did he quit, but he did it in a phone call, in an exclusine interview with a reporter. He made no effort to speak to anyone on the team first. He just went to Asia.

As time passes on this story, we learn more and more about Ricky Williams and the issues he was facing. We learned that Ricky Williams likes to smoke marijuana, and does it apparently a great deal. He failed three drug tests while with the Dolphins, two within three months of each other, and would have been suspended for four games had he reported to training camp normally. This, according to Williams, had nothing to do with his decision to retire.

Right. Williams was diagnosed with social anxiety disorder, and was originally on Paxil, an anti-depressant used to combat the disease. However, he stopped taking the medication and smokes marijuana instead. "Marijuana is 10 times better for me than Paxil," Williams is quoted as saying.

People felt sorry for Ricky Williams. He was misunderstood people said. We should take pity on a person with a medical condition who just wants to play football but instead has this huge spotlight placed on him. No one's feeling any pity for Ricky Williams now. Smoke the weed and stay away from football. When the money runs out (and it surely will), Ricky will grow up fast.

And it'll be too late.

Friday, July 23, 2004

    Ergh. Rough day yesterday. Took my cat to the vet, took my son to the doctor, took myself to the asylum. Ok, the last part isn't entirely accurate, but it was getting there.

    The cat went to the vet because he's got "crystals", which is pretty much along the lines of kidney stones in a human. If untreated, it can cause the kidneys to back up and kill the cat. We caught it early, but between x-rays and tests and medicine and good ol' "food you can only buy at the vet so we can charge double", we're talking over three bills.

    The boy, in contrast, is ok. The doctor visit for him was a follow up because he had what looked to possibly be bronchitis in an x-ray. He got a little medication and he was fine. It was detected very early so it never really got to the point where you'd hear anything. He wasn't coughing or anything, so the only way we knew about it was a bit of heavy breathing and a hunch with an x-ray.

    Softball sucked because I got pulled again midway through the game. No one ever says that they're going to pull me, I just end up overhearing someone else or go to go out to my position to find somone else standing there. And the thing is, it's only one person who feels the desire to get me off the field, but he ends up running the team as the game gets going. Anyway, I got pulled in the fourth, and I stuck around for a few innings to see us come back from a deficit (a possible third straight win???), but ended up leaving the bottom of the 6th (just as we were batting) with the score tied because Cole was being a cranky. I didn't get to see the final score, but I did get to stick around long enough to see the guy who replaced me at second drop a simple fly ball that would have been the third out. Defensive replacement my ass.

    However, I tried to make up for it by picking up ESPN NFL 2K5 for my PS2. Hell, it's only $20 ($15 after rebate from FYE). I did a quick run through it last night after I got home from the game (as much as Cole would allow) and it's got a good deal of potential. I love the layout, and the ESPN interface adds a touch of realism to it, moreso than the generic "Madden" network which was cool back when it tied in with Fox Sports, but with Madden on MNF, it's just not there anymore.

    I wanted to read some reviews about it before I picked it up, but to be flat out honest, $20 for a new PS2 game generally eliminates the need for "informed purchasing decisions". Sega (yes, that Sega) is attempting again to drive a wedge into the Madden dominated NFL video game market, which is no easy task, but by dropping their price point down over 50%, they're definitely going to get the game into more than a few homes that wouldn't have bought it otherwise (yours truly included).

    The review will come later for it, because I want to get some serious time into it before I can be objective. Most games are usually cool because they're new. It's after the honeymoon period is over that you learn the flaws within the game, and what really annoys you about it.

Monday, July 19, 2004

    Hell, what's there to say? The post below this one says February 2nd. That's over five months.

    There's no excuse for that.

    I can sit here all day and make excuses, and I've done that in the past, too (feel free to scroll down). It comes down to something relatively simple. In the past, I wasn't working. In order to occupy myself, get my writing out somewhere, and vent a little bit, I got the content for rolling. I got a few people on board to write articles, and they did... every once in a while.

    What eventually happened (in the middle of writing up the 10 Job Challenge articles) is I actually got a job. It was a great thing to happen to my family, obviously, but it's a crappy thing to happen to I thought that I would still be writing content, but after working all day, I find myself keeping sane by taking the activities that normally took a chunk of my day and tried to cram it into a fraction of that day. Things that got lost in the wayside were things like It's not something I'm very proud of, but it's the way laziness (and that's the best thing to label it, no ADD crap here) works.

    So what makes me think things are going to change? Nothing, really. If anything, between the fire department and a two month old son, my free time is minimal. Things that I used to regularly update (such as my Scoresheet site) aren't getting updated. That, and OOTP 6 is eating up most of my "rec" time, which sucks because it totally draws me in and I can play that damned game for hours on hours. If I open the program, it's pretty much what I'm doing until I shut the damned thing down. This isn't a knock on the producers of the game, it's just something I need to not touch if I plan on getting other things accomplished.

    I did lose one job though. If you read enough into the site, you know that I picked up a side job with the East Hampton Star doing the "shorts" for my hometown of Bridgehampton. It was a minor bit of income, but income nonetheless, and it got my name out there. I didn't see a gnegative to it.

    What it actually did was made me dread writing. Nothing sucked my creativity dry like doing that weekly column. If you actually read the thing locally, you wouldn't know I wrote it outside of the fact that my name was slathered on top of it.

    I started off with energy, writing this whole entertaining thing with the information I was given. Basically, the purpose of the column was to tell people what was going on in Bridgehampton that week. If you were going to visit Bridgehampton (or lived there and was looking for something to do), technically you could visit my column to get ideas of what was happening in the community. I took my example from the Southampton Press and Steven Kotz, whom I've had the pleasure to meet on several occasions covering the same event. Kotz would throw a little personality into the column, mentioning things that were going on in his life and relating it to the events that he was covering. It was an entertaining read, especially considering the content he had to write about (church barbeques can only be so interesting).

    That wasn't to be done at the Star. The "first person narrative" was a definate no-no. The second column I wrote for them had two paragraphs of content completely taken out because it talked about my adventures relating to the Bridgehampton events. To quote Joe Friday, the Star column was "just the facts."

    There's nothing that takes the energy out of you than restricting any kind of creative freedom you might have doing something you used to love. It was basically data entry, except I had to find the data. Worse yet, I could give info about six events to the Star, and only three of them would make the paper, because the other three were talked about elsewhere in the paper. We must not be redundant, apparently. So, not only does my column have no flavor whatsoever, but it's usually clipped in half and looks like we couldn't find anything to write about.

    I could rant on and on about the Star, but this segment is getting pretty long. I will wrap up quickly by throwing together a few links; a few for, which I write for now (with a bit of creative freedom). I wrote an article about riding the bus, and another about growing up in the Hamptons. Part of getting off my butt and writing more is to keep producing content for HamptonsView, and if I keep writing for them, I'll keep writing for here, and so on. content pretty much has to be about the Hamptons (or at least be Hamptons-related), so if I come up with ideas that have nothing to do with the Hamptons, instead of scrapping them, they're going here. I also reserve the right to reproduce articles that may not have made HamptonsView or perhaps got edited more than I wanted them to be. That hasn't happened yet, but you never know with editors. HamptonsView treats me well, though.

    THe other link I wanted to throw out there was That's where the boy is, who just turned two months old Sunday. If he keeps me from writing, it's worth it, because at the same time, he's my inspiration to do better things. I think of things that I want to do (make a living just writing, publish a book, maybe even a screenplay), and these are things that I couldn't necessarily get off my butt and do for myself. Seeing my wife and son makes me want to do them, for them.

    Oh, and another thing. I've set up a mailing list so that if you're interested in when I update this thing, you can just send a blank email to That should put you on the mailing list, which I'll send an email to every time I update the site. Obviously, I'm not collecting the emails and selling them to porn companies. You know, unless you want me to. Which I'll assume by the look you're giving me that you don't, so I won't. I promise.

    Anyway, that's it for now (and it was a bit much, wasn't it?) Hopefully more tomorrow.