Today in Philadelphia Phillies history - Rick Wise for Steve Carlton

Thursday, February 25, 2010

From my Page-a-Day Calendar e-mail...

February 25, 1972
Just to prove a point about owner-ballplayer control in the days before free agency, St. Louis Cardinals owner Gussie Busch refuses to offer left-hander Steve Carlton more than $60,000 per season and trades him to Philadelphia. Carlton wastes no time proving the error of the beer baron’s ways when he gets to his new club. He’ll compile one of baseball’s finest overall seasons in 1972, winning 27 games for a last-place team. Known simply as “Lefty,” he’ll earn four Cy Young Awards, winning 329 games in all, and amass 4,136 strikeouts.

Also on this day in 1997 the Phillies signed Danny Tartabull. I would say the Carlton acquisition was a better move.


More snow???

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

So the latest forecasts are predicting anywhere between six and twelve inches of snow starting tonight into tomorrow morning. though it is a bit of a cliché, I made the trip to the grocery store to pick up some milk (which we were really out of) and some other necessities. I was a bit surprised with the amount of people there as early as it was.

Do people really feel a need to get out to buy milk, eggs and bread when large amounts of snow are predicted?

I'm charging my camera up now in preparation of the next snowpocalypse.


Great vintage video of Brian Westbrook

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

While doing a quick YouTube search for some Brian Westbrook footage for my previous post, I cam across this video that was just posted a few days ago. Great video footage of B-West as an Eagles and as a Villanova Wildcat.


So long Brian Westbrook

Eagles release Westbrook - Jeff McLane,
Westbrook to finish as one of the Eagles' All-Time greats -
Westbrook's All-Time Eagle Ranks -
Brian Westbrook will be released - Kulp, The 700 Level
36-West taking a new road - Chris Shafer, Phinally Philly
Philadelphia Eagles release Brian Westbrook - JasonB, Bleeding Green Nation

A day after the San Diego Chargers cut LaDainian Tomlinson, the Philadelphia Eagles cut ties with their own running back, Brian Westbrook.

Westbrook was always one of my favorite Eagles to watch, especially in his younger days. He was the most electrifying Eagles player in the franchise over the last decade, I believe, and that includes personalities like Terrell Owens and DeSean Jackson (although Jackson is quickly taking over the role). Overlooked by many in the NFL the Eagles struck gold with the Villanova product and the rest of the league soon found out what they had passed up on.

My favorite Westbrook memory will undoubtedly be the same as many of yours. The punt return against the New York Giants.

Not sure where Westbrook will go now but I would have to imagine that he'll get a call or two despite his downward production recently and battles with injuries, including concussions.

This is a tough week for Philadelphia's loved sports stars. Now that we are faced with moving on past a fan favorite in green for the second time in the past year (Brian Dawkins) we are also left wondering what the fate of Allen Iverson is. Iverson has taken a leave of absence to be with his family as his daughter is being treated at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia for an illness that has yet to be released to the public. While we will say so long and farewell and send best wishes to Westbrook, we all surely will keep the Iverson family in our thoughts as well.


Playing right field and batting sixth, Jesus Christ

By now you probably know that the biggest Phillies news from yesterday was not Brad Lidge's first pitches from the mound since undergoing surgery, nor was it that the entire team was checked in and ready to go down in Clearwater. Heck it wasn't even the fact that Chan Ho Park signed wiht the Yankees.

This was the hot topic yesterday...

Jayson Werth, who is a debating point already in the final year of his contract, stole the show yesterday when he showed up with his new best friend (his hair). How quick were Phillies fans to jump on the beard's band wagon?

You tell me .

But the important thing to remember is that the entire team is now in spring training and getting ready for the 2010 season. Can you feel the excitement yet? I know I can!


Dr. J meets Doogie Howser

Monday, February 22, 2010

Faced with the pressure of living up to his co-workers' expectations on the basketball court, Doogie Howser (Neil Patrick Harris), who has no basketball skills, has nowhere to turn but to alter-ego, and Philadelphia 76ers living legend, Julius Erving.

After faking an ankle injury to miss the big game Howser comes around to feeling guilty about letting his teammates and co-workers down. Leave it to Erving to pile on the guilt as the pressure mounts on Doogie to play in the game. When faced with forfeiting the game Doogie finally comes through.

Of course the fate of the game would be decided by the young doctor, right? Fittingly none other than Dr. J offers Doogie with some words of advice with the game on the line.

The video of the ball going in or missing the hoop fades to a scene back at the hospital as Ray (Markus Redmond), who had previously held Doogie and his best friend Vincent Delpino (Max Casella) hostage in a gas station earlier in the series, as he settles a score with a patient he finds to be attractive. But the show wraps up the same way every episode does, with the young prodigy at the computer typing into his digital journal. The good doctor makes one last house call...

Full Episode: Air Doogie


Happy Birthday Julius Errrrrrrving!

Dr. J was born on this day in 1950.

I may have never watched Dr. J play the game of basketball (I did not become remotely interested in the round ball until well after he retired) but I obviously have a tremendous amount of respect for the Sixers legend.

I was fortunate to hear Erving speak a few years back at Shippensburg University as the highlight of a minority scholarship dinner. My favorite story he told that night was how he first met Bill Cosby. I do not remember the exact story but it was back in his college days at UMass. He went to the locker room to get ready for a game or something and who is sitting there in the hot tub but the Philadelphia comedy legend himself. The biggest compliment that Erving ever received was right there in the hot tub when Cosby said he had heard of him and liked his game. Erving was floored!

Erving also starred in a video game with Larry Bird, before Michael Jordan replaced him in the NES version of the game. Enjoy this Commodore 64 footage, which I believe my childhood friend Jody had at his home, of One-on-One.


Double McTwist 1260

Thursday, February 18, 2010

The slogan for the McFlurry works for the Double McTwist 1260 as well.

If you have been watching the Winter Olympics like I have then you are very familiar with the term "Double McTwist". No, this is not the latest ice cream dessert being served at your local McDonald's restaurant, but I would find it hard to believe that the people in charge of McDonald's advertising department are not trying to get in contact with the biggest name in the winter games in Vancouver, Shaun White.

I know nothing about skiing or snowboarding, especially when you get into the lingo of different moves, but I know when someone is good. And I do not believe I need broadcasters to tell me (especially the NBC crew, who pales in comparison to the Winter X-Games staff). I had watched the Winter X-games a few weeks ago so I already was aware of the much hyped move, the Double McTwist. Even though there was no need for it in last night's snowboard half pipe final (White had clinched a gold with his first of two runs), you absolutely knew that White was going to display his latest trick.

In what amounted to a victory lap for White, the biggest star at the Winter Olympics did not disappoint with his exhibition run, which scored higher than his gold clinching run from the first round by two points. For a great breakdown of the Double McTwist I suggest you head over to The Sporting Blog where Dan Levy (of On the DL Podcast) has a terrific breakdown of each part of the move that is sure to be Googled a lot today.


Be Like Mike, happy birthday Michael Jordan

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Admit it, we all wish we could be like Mike, right?

Today is Michael Jordan's birthday (born in 1963) so I wanted to be sure to remind you of one of the catchiest commercial jingles of all time. Do not be surprised if it gets stuck in your head at some point today. For that I apologize in advance.

I have no problem telling you that Jordan is the greatest basketball player I have ever watched. Forget about Kobe Bryant and LeBron James. For me Jordan is second to none.


Snowpocalypse Wannabe

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Days after we recovered from the second major storm in the span of a week, we were threatened once again by the fluffy white stuff. But this snow fall was pitiful compared to the previous couple of snow storms.

I dub thee Snowpocalypse Wannabe!

One other note,today marks the five year anniversary of the first post on Ramblings. I could have been a little more sentimental about this important date for the site, but I am much too busy to focus on it. I'm struggling to get on a regular blog schedule on this site lately as I am busy with Examiner content. I am seeing a light at the end of the tunnel though so I should be getting back on a schedule that will allow for some pressure free blogging here in the near future.

For fun, read through this (poorly written, probably needs editing) post that christened the site. the topic? The NHL forfeiting their entire season.


Snowpocalypse - Icicles

Friday, February 12, 2010

Is there a better title for this? Huge icicles is exactly what I have going on in the aftermath of Snowpocalypse 2. At first I just noticed this one icicle hanging in front of the front window. This morning my wife and I decided to give it a name. It is the lone icicle on the front of the building and looks lonely hanging out by himself in the daytime sunlight. It just dangles from the gutter and is held in place by the snow that is still on the roof.

Perhaps he should join his friends in the back.

Later in the morning I took a peak at our heating unit, which has twice had to have repairs to it so ensure we still have heat during these cold winter days. To my surprise I saw that the unit was surrounded by massive icicles, and there are many more in the back as well.

You see that one icicle that trails off at the bottom of the image? Here is the entire icicle...


Google tapping into Winter Olympic Buzz

The winter Olympic games are just around the corner, and today Google put out one of their more elaborate logo designs to honor the occasion. Not bad looking if you ask me.

It has been a big week for Google. Of course most of the attention has been drawn to the new Google Buzz, which is incorporated into GMail and looks like a stepping stone to getting people on board the Google Wave train (I have 16 invites to Wave remaining if you are interested - leave a comment to request one). I have been using it for a couple days (you can check my profile and follow me) and I look forward to sharing some thoughts on it shortly.

If you are using Google Buzz let me know what you think of it so far. Do you see yourself using it on a regular basis (I do) or have you yet to find a reason for coming back to it?


Snowpocalypse - 12:47pm, Lansdale goes over 7 inches

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

LANSDALE, PA - While I was eating lunch we went over seven inches of snowfall in the Lansdale area. As always, my readings are unofficial, but the picture speaks for itself. From what I gather we are only half way through this snow storm as well.

Good day once again to stay inside, watch some movies, catch up on the DVR, eat some soup and play a good video game. Or in my case, get some writing done!


Snowpocalypse 2 - 11:30am, 6.5 in.

LANSDALE, PA - As of 11:30am my unofficial snow reading shows that we have received 6.5 inches of the powdery white stuff so far. A lot more is still expected.

Continue to let me know how much snow you have so far!


Tweetdeck 0.33 on Mac running properly

Tweetdeck 0.33 is finally working for me, and I will share with you the steps you need to do in order to get it to work on your Mac if you were experiencing the same problem I had.

Tweetdeck support staffer Richard gave me some helpful tips to get it working on my system, which I thought was up to date. Turns out I needed a beta release of Adobe AIR to be installed to get things working for me. Before that I needed to delete a couple folders from my system, perhaps more as a precaution. Deleting these files may or may not be needed if you have the beta release of Adobe AIR already installed.

Here is what I was instructed to do, in screenshot form. I'll provide the links down below.

I followed these steps and now Tweetdeck 0.33 seems to be working just fine. I'll give it a day or two before I provide my general thoughts on the latest version. In the meantime allow this post to serve as a testament to the help that the Tweetdeck staff can provide if you are in need of help.

Download Tweetdeck


Snowpocalypse - 7am, almost five inches

LANSDALE, PA - I'll take a page from my Penn State blogging buddy Will with some snow updates today. The second snow storm in the past week is upon us! I'll be trying to update the progress of the storm throughout the day.

As of 7:00am I am unofficially announcing that Lansdale, PA has received just under five inches of snow so far.

How much snow have you received? Send me your snow reports in a comment form or send along a photo of your snow measurements so we can share them!


New Facebook layout has arrived

Tuesday, February 09, 2010

I just got the face lift on my account yesterday afternoon and at first I liked it, but I was curious where my groups had disappeared too. No worries. I just had to click on "Friends" in the left side bar. I use groups to sort my Facebook friends into different categories. I have groups set up specifically for my college friends and my high school friends, another one for fraternity brothers, and another one for fellow Examiner writers. I can not use Facebook without the groups feature. It is like using Tweetdeck's columns.

I know many of you will have nothing better to do than ask everyone "Why is Facebook changing their look again?" and shouting out "I hate the new look, change it back!" etc. etc. etc. It's changed. Get over it.
If you have not received the new Facebook layout yet, go ahead and study this handy-dandy cheat sheet now so you are familiar with the new look.

What are your thoughts on the new Facebook layout? Let me know either via comment here or on my Facebook page.


Tweetdeck 0.33 released, Not playing well with Mac

I can't tell you much about it.

My favorite Twitter client software, Tweetdeck, saw what looks like a fantastic update released this week with version 0.33. The latest version adds better column and account management and adds better preview functionality to support Flickr and YouTube. Perhaps the best improvement is the limit on API calls from 150 (which, for me, ran dry pretty quickly during football or baseball games) to a whopping 350 calls per hour. That is a thing of beauty.

Needless to say I was anxious to dip my toes in the new waters, but for some reason or another the new Tweetdeck and my up to date MacBook Pro do not want to play nicely. How could this be? I thought things were easier with a Mac? This is the error message I receive...

After submitting a support ticket to the Tweetdeck folks and posting a message on their support forum in response to a similar problem, I took some measures that have worked for me in the past. I removed Tweetdeck entirely from my system as well as Adobe Air, restarted the computer and tried installing again. This time it did not work for me.

If anyone out there is experiencing a similar problem or has been able to get 0.33 to work please leave a message below in the comments section. As soon as I get this problem resolved I will update this post so that it may help others in a similar situation.

My support ticket
Tweetdeck - 0.33 features

UPDATE: 2.10.2010 (9:48 AM) - After receiving a response from Tweetdeck support (view the comments below) I was able to get the latest version up and running. For help on how to resolve the problem, read these tips.


New Super Mario Brothers Ending

Monday, February 08, 2010

Consider this a spoiler alert.

In conjunction with my list of games I have beaten in 2010 I want to archive the various endings to the games to go along with it.

Below is video of the final stage in the Nintendo DS game, New Super Mario Brothers using Luigi as the main character. To unlock Luigi you must first beat the game as Mario. You are then given a clue to hit the "L" and "R" buttons when selecting a game file at the main menu. Instead of Mario you will hear Luigi's voice and will play as Mario's taller, more slender, brother.

This player takes the cheap way out by running underneath Bowser as he jumps and hits the switch that removes the bridge from beneath the King of the Koopas. I will say though that I took the liberty of going the extra mile and knocking Bowser out with fireballs. I have no video t prove this so you will have to take my word for it.

That should do it for this week's edition of Mario Monday. Next week will mark the long-awaited return of regular Mario Monday content, with a look at Super Mario 64.


Beaten in 2010

You may know that I am a bit of a Nintendo geek. I have a long history of playing Nintendo games and still today I find myself playing games by one of the most influential companies in the video game industry.

So I decided to keep track of the games that I have beaten in 2010. It may just be to keep track of my own progress, and perhaps nobody will truly care about it, but it's my blog so I make the rules.

We'll start with New Super Mario Brothers for the Nintendo DS, which I completed over the weekend.

  1. New Super Mario Brothers (Nintendo DS) - February 7, 2010
Also, let's take a look at a couple games that should be added to the list in the future.

On the To-Do List
  1. New Super Mario Brothers Wii (Nintendo Wii)
  2. Legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass (Nintendo DS)
  3. Star Wars: The Force Unleashed (Nintendo Wii)


My favorite Super Bowl Commercial

Coca-Cola has a good reputation with their commercials during the Super Bowl in my book. Perhaps I am a bit biased though as I prefer Coke over Pepsi every day of the week, but yesterday's Super Bowl advertisement was one of my favorites of the day.

Witty, satirical, smart, and cute. That is pretty much Coca-Cola's theme in all of their commercials, but when you add in The Simpsons, you have a winner.

I will have a more detailed post on the Super Bowl ads, along with my top five, either later today or tomorrow. In the meantime, let me know what your favorite commercial was.


Super Bowl prediction

Saturday, February 06, 2010

Colts 34
Saints 27

That's my official prediction. What is your guess?

On a related topic, I'm in my dad's office box pool for the game. I must say I have a couple of good squares for the game. Let' hope it works out!


Snowmageddon - Souderton/Lansdale Edition

This is by no means an official reading, but we have over a foot of snow right outside the front door, and it is still coming down. This is a good day to stay inside, catch up on some DVR, watch a good movie or two, make some home made soup, drink some hot chocolate and play some video games.

How much snow have you received so far?


Tecmo Super Bowl computer simulation

Friday, February 05, 2010

Every week the folks at ESPN and some other media outlets choose to simulate the weekend's big game using the latest version of the popular Madden Football series. Well that's fine and dandy, but for something more unique you really must witness this computer simulation using the classic football game, Tecmo Super Bowl.

This version is full with updated rosters so guys like Peyton Manning and Drew Brees, neither of which was in college when the game was originally released, are ready to go. Who wins?

For more on this simulation read Alex Quigley's post on Chicago Now.


How the Google Nexus One was created

I said it before, and I'll say it again. The Nexus One will be my next phone. Take a look at the process that took place to create it, straight form the mouth of those who helped put it together...


Most played songs in iTunes for January

Monday, February 01, 2010

Surprisingly some leftover Christmas music made its way into my most played list for the month of January. But other than that it seems obvious that I was on a bit of a jazz kick in January. I still have yet to rate a bunch of it though, as you can see from the above screen shot of my customized iTunes playlist.

What are some of the songs you listened to the most last month? Let me know what you've been listening too and give me some suggestions for February!


Toyota recall have you thinking of alternatives?

I am thankful that I drive a Suzuki right now instead of a Toyota, because Toyota is in the crazy situation right now. Hopefully if you drive a Toyota you are not a part of the recent recall that has essentially frozen the company lately. Make sure to find out if your Toyota is part of the massive recall that stems from serious concerns about sticking gas pedals.

Luckily my wife's Corolla is free from the recall (for now). But here is an alternative for you looking for the safest and most economical mode of transportation.


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