Aug 252016
 
  • Most of my knowledge of Chicago, the band, has been of its competent-but-unremarkable pop music. “Hard to Say I’m Sorry”? Remember that one? That kicked off a dozen pop hits through the rest of the ’80s, all decent but none particularly memorable. I know of early Chicago, but only the biggest singles. So what did I do last night? Well, I’m a mature enough listener now to enjoy that first Chicago album top to bottom. (And a couple others. I bought the debut, the second album, and VI to begin. Having a blast so far.)
  • Pocono got rained out on Sunday, so they rescheduled it to Monday. It’s one of only two 500-mile races on the IndyCar schedule. Did I take off work to watch it? Yes. Yes, I did. I enjoyed it very much, though it deserved a more interesting winner than Will Power. So glad Helio Castroneves was OK after this bizarre pit road accident. Another inch or two and he’d have been killed.
  • If you’ll cultivate a taste for black coffee, you’ll be happy anywhere there is coffee. Plus, black coffee pairs so well with dessert. Yin. Yang. Got me?
  • As I type, we are inside ten days until the first Alabama game of the 2016 season. Are you ready? Does it feel real to you yet?
  • Well, it doesn’t feel all the way to me yet because we still have this cheese dip weather. I hope September is kind.
  • Dad burned Jenny and me out on lemon chicken in 1982 (immediately post-divorce). I discovered last night that I’m still not over this. I guess if it’s persisted 34 years, it may be lifelong.
  • The common lionfish is a devastating invasive species in the Gulf of Mexico. It has a voracious appetite, and nothing eats it. Is a lionfish-zapping robot the answer?
 Posted by at 12:03 pm
Aug 222016
 

As I type, it is eleven weeks from Election Day. The conventional wisdom for the 2016 presidential election is that Hillary Clinton is all but inevitable. Don’t put a foot wrong, Hill—especially keep it out of your mouth—and you’re in.

Run out the clock.

But just how highly should we value conventional wisdom this time? Are you paying attention? We’ve been tumbling down the rabbit hole for months. And it’s not that up is down, it’s that up is purple.

Many have said it before me, and I’ll say it again here: in Donald Trump, the Republicans put up one of the only candidates Hillary Clinton could beat. In Hillary Clinton, the Democrats put up one of the only candidates Donald Trump could beat.

To say that we don’t have best feet forward here is an understatement.

So what could happen to Hillary? Here are two big opportunities for chaos:

  • Julian Assange says he’s still sitting on quite a lot of Clinton Foundation/campaign/DNC material, for which he’s promised staggered release over the remainder of the campaign. (He has suggested that just before debates would be ideal drop times.)
  • Trump could make a political master stroke. I’m still fleshing out exactly what I think that might look like, but consider with me: what would be the (seemingly) least likely trait for him to exhibit? How about humility? What about a somber delivery of something like “Look, folks. I know my mouth gets me in trouble sometimes, and I know a lot of you find me obnoxious. But please let me take a moment to talk about my love of this country, and why and how it motivates me…”

As crazy as this campaign has been, I have the gnawing suspicion that from here to the end will be the least predictable time of the entire cycle.

 Posted by at 9:42 am
Aug 192016
 

I happened upon a shorter version of this story in a comment this morning. I needed to read it today, and I also want to retell it. Three years ago, Aaron and I were riding the elevator down from the beach condo at which we’d just had a vacation. It was the last elevator ride of […]

 Posted by at 1:43 pm
Aug 182016
 

I remember when 386 meant an Intel 80386-powered desktop computer, and it was blazingly fast and thousands of dollars. I also remember that in 1989, our controller Sam at Madison Books & Computers rated one. It was a Toshiba. Did you know they only stopped production of the 80386 microprocessor in 2007? It’s been a […]

 Posted by at 7:15 am
Aug 172016
 

“You don’t get to decide what offends me!” This is, of course, true, but only trivially so. Any of us are free to be offended by anything we like. I’m offended when sesame seeds come on my hamburger bun. I’m offended by freight trains with an odd number of cars. I’m offended when the sun […]

 Posted by at 12:08 pm

BoWilliams.com is using WP-Gravatar