Tuesday, August 28, 2007


Thoughts from the last several days:

-Now that Michael Vick has confessed to the crimes of which he was accused, and a judge will determine how much time he spends behind bars for them, the guy says he has found Jesus. Amazing how that always seems to happen minutes before a press conference or nationally broadcast interview. Amazing!

-Lauren Caitlyn Upton...the 18-year-old who mangled her answer to a question during the speaking portion of the Miss Teen USA pageant... will be over her embarassment soon. Especially when she gets some of the ba-zillion dollars in endorsement deals that are likely to come her way. She is the personification of (please excuse the term) "dumb blonde" and is willing to have fun with her mistake. Big bucks on the way...she'll be all right.

-Nature called at just the right time for me to see the lunar eclipse at 4:55 this morning. When I see such things, it always reminds me how small we are in relation to everything else, and how little time we have in the scheme of things.

-Update on the offspring:
Son Stewart is setting up life in Southern California. He flew out last week and is scheduled to begin rehearsal this week for his lead in dark play or stories for boys at the Theatre at Boston Court in Pasadena. We had a great crowd of friends and relatives for a graduation/send-off party on 8/19. After finding a place to live, and adequate transportation, he'll begin pursuit of his post-collegiate dream.

Son Ian continues writing and recording music with his friends in Bowling Green, KY and Nashville. The group Chassis has now posted a completed song on its myspace page.

Barb and I were thrilled with the turnout for an interior-design seminar hosted by our great advertising client Mueller Furniture in Belleville on Friday night. We coordinated the whole thing and were worried that the early-evening thunderstorms would chase folks away. Fifty signed up...and they all pretty much showed up. And that represented a full house. We had some teriffic presentations and a good time seemed to be had by all. We'll probably do it again within the next 3-4 months. The Mueller Furniture operation is excelling as a family-operated business in a time when big-box stores are shutting down so many others.

-I must admit that I never thought the Cardinals would be in the position they're in this late in the season. Or, at least, I didn't think so after the first couple of months of the season. Everyone says it's Tony LaRussa's best managing job ever...and that's hard to argue against. What I always have to remind myself is that baseball's season constitutes a marathon, not a sprint. Each game is only 1/162nd of the season. A month of games is only 1/6th of the season. The best team tends to be the one that's most consistent...not necessarily spectacular. I still think, though, that the team will see a major overhaul during the coming off-season.

-Wake me up when the NFL pre-season is over. When the games begin to count, I'll write about the Rams. Still the biggest rip-off in sports...the NFL exhibition season.

-Jay Leno seems to be going into cruise control. NBC ran Tonight Show re-runs over the last two weeks. The ratings-obsessed and workaholic Leno previously was reluctant to take even one week off...let along two in a row. The guy might be ready to wind things down in readiness for Conan O'Brien's takeover...even though it's a few years down the road.

-A story in the news today about a KC woman trying to flush her newborn baby boy down the toilet in a McDonald's bathroom has to make you scratch your head.
A) What makes a woman think this way?
B) What makes a woman think she could get away with it?
C) What about "Thou shalt not kill" is ambiguous?

-We should find out soon some of the details of the proposed Collinsville soccer stadium development. Attorney Jeff Cooper, the major force behind the concept, says he wants the public to see details of the plan before Collinsville leaders vote on going ahead with funding proposals on September 10th. Cooper's plan is very ambitious. But then, what exciting plan isn't? The whole idea could go up in smoke if the MLS doesn't grant Cooper an expansion franchise for St. Louis.


Animal Chaplain said...

If there is anything good about the Michael Vick story, it is that there is an emerging increased awareness about animal cruelty and animal fighting. There is so much anger about this issue. If we channel it into a positive direction, hopefully, something good can come of it. However...

I watched Vick's public apology with my little son who USED TO wear Michael Vick jerseys to school. It is disturbing to think a certain percentage of the population is honestly going to be swayed by Michael Vick's "enlightenment" carefully crafted by his overpaid attorneys. Call me a cynic, but I don't believe a man who has been allegedly torturing animals since childhood coincidentally has a religious epiphany as a result of getting caught and losing his job. I hope I am wrong.

I think it is a sad commentary that we, as a culture, are using the Vick story to compare "What's worse?" "What's worse", we ask, "carelessly fathering illegitimate children, or dogfighting?". "Dogfighting or gambling?" "Dogfighting or rape?" "Dogfighting or racism?" "Dogfighting or hateful nationalism?" "Dogfighting or (fill in the blank)....?" The comparisons to dogfighting have been endless.

Dogfighting is one more piece of evidence our country is in need of a spiritual transformation (please note I said spiritual and not necessarily religious). Animals are sentient beings - they feel pain, and they suffer, just like we do. They are not more important, or less important than human beings, but like human beings, they are important, too.

Dogfighting pits one dog against another until one of them dies. The survivor gets his flesh torn off, ears ripped off, eyes pulled out, etc., and the reward for being "a winner" is to writhe in pain until the next fight. Enough said. The pictures make my flesh crawl. The losers are tortured, beaten, starved, electrocuted or drowned. For what? Because these poor creatures were unlucky enough to be born a dog!

Every major faith teaches its followers to be responsible stewards of animals and the Earth. Please help us get the word out that caring for animals, just like caring for people, is an important part of just being a decent person and citizen. If we make this a priority, there will be no more dogfighting horror stories, and no more pointless comparisons of evils. Let us all rise, together, to be better people than we are today, shall we?

Chaplain Nancy Cronk
Founder, www.AnimalChaplains.com

William R. Fink said...

When I hear about sports-related stories and the bad things which are happening these days, I can not help but think about Pete Rose and the fact he will probably never make it to the hall of fame during his lifetime.

While one can’t compare sport’s gambling to dog fighting, it is just makes me believe we are growing numb to the severity of questionable activities perpetrated by the people in the spotlight. Paris Hilton will continue to continue to make money, Lindsay Lohan will continue to make movies, Britney Spears will continue to sell records, and OJ Simpson will continue to be free; yet, Pete Rose will still not be in the Baseball Hall of Fame.