random weirdness

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# 502 in a series of posts

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it finally dawned on lubeesia montez-monroe that her first name was stupid. it might have occurred to her sooner but she had been busy. busy with stuff. lubeesia stuff. odd crap from different times and places. totally weird crap. but not as weird as lubeesia. or her name. she went before a judge and said her name was lame and would he please change it. the judge being sort of out of sorts that day and having already dealt with the rock n roller prince and his insanity that morning the judge said ok and changed her name to, profolaxtixs montez-mondieu. ah, yes, the chances we take. can be a mistake. but amazingly not in this case.

freed from her lubeesia name profolaxtixs became a much nicer person and stopped all her weird shit. ok, most of the really strange crap but for the most part kept just enough to still be weird but not oh my god is she fucking weird i’m outta here weird. get the picture? perhaps. but for those of you who are meeting lubeesia or profolaxtixs for the first time maybe a tad of the weirdness that was once she is in order.

let’s see…she awoke one morning in singapore for why or how she didn’t know. and never did but being one to make the best of things she washed up then clipped her toenails and took the clippings and put a few of them in each corner of the room. until they were all gone. ah, there, she said. full filled. see? strange. not that strange but well, maybe stupid strange in a sort of nameless drudgery way strange.

she stayed in singapore till she woke up one day in mexico. baja to be exact. in a hotel room over looking the ocean that smelled of ass. which of course porfolaxtixs enjoyed so she stayed till she ran out of money. then she got a job and stayed a while longer. breathing deeply each and every time she went into the room. ah, ass she said. each and every time.
see? strange.

perhaps even stranger was the last day she spent in baja. it was morning and she had boarded a bus in ensenada which would take her to her place of employment at la bufadora, the infamous baja tourista spot. where profolaxtixs worked as an assistant to the toilet paper lady. she prepared the 4 sheets of cheap double ply paper for her boss to sell. she barely made enough to make ends meet. but she was very happy.

the bus was a bit over half way to her work place when it was stopped by 6 federales manning a road block. road blocks and federales are a common thing in baja. the strangest thing being the fact most of the soldiers were around 14 years old and wielding fully automatic AR-15′s. scary strange. the youngest one boarded the bus and shouted they were looking for lubeesia montez-monroe. oh oh.

profolaxtixs was stunned for several moments and she sat rigidly silent. the young soldier shouted his request again and punctuated this request by sending a round into the AR-15′s firing chamber. the new wrinkle made her stand up and say she was who they were looking for. all the time wondering just what the fuck was going on. she was removed from the bus blind folded and hogged tied then tossed into an armored personnel carrier and taken back to ensenada and the mexican navel base located there.

once there she was taken before the commandante still blind folded and hogged tied. she was told she had committed crimes against the state of baja. what crimes she asked through a poorly applied piece of duct tape. though in her heart she knew. strange twisted blood curdling venal sins against the poor people of baja california and humanity in general. el commandante pancho aereo-villa told profolaxtixs to shut up and go with her guards. she had no choice. she was still hogged tied.

as she was being dragged from the commanders office profolaxtixs watched as pancho aereo-villa opened a desk drawer and pulled out a small bottle of purell and cleaned his hands.

it was still very dark when profolaxtixs awoke with a start. she was wrapped up like a sausage in her bed sheets and sweating profusely. the sheets were soaked. not immediately sure where she was until the familiar smell of her hotel room filled her nose. ah, ass she said. smiling to herself she knew it had been a dream and only a dream. a bad dream to be sure but only a dream.

profolaxtixs unwrapped herself from her the sheets got out of bed and took a shower. when she was finished she clipped her toenails and fingernails. humming ‘strangers in the night’ she collected the clippings in an envelop. later that morning she would mail the clippings to the sinatra family trust. smiling to herself as she fixed the sheets she got back into bed but not before taking a huge lung full of her hotel room air. ah, ass she said.

see? strange.

jmh

Written by john hauge

April 3, 2014 at 5:16 am

# 501 in a series of posts

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eddie otto was born on
the mean streets of your town.

back when the streets were tamer
but by no means park like.

he lived by his wits and fists
or by whatever means he could.

you have seen him off
and on your whole life.

sure sometimes he was
away and out of sight.

like the stint at the
Q for instance.

but he was always there
sitting on a curb.

or the guy at the store
in line in front of you.

or sticking that pistol
in your ribs the night
you got car jacked.

sure he is older now
maybe not as spry
or recognizable
as he once was
but still
if you looked at him
and the mind was allowed
to remember.
well shit yeah
i know this guy.
crap.

does he
remember me?
if i turn around
and try to act
like someone
just called
my name
from somewhere
behind me
i wave and go
the other way
maybe he won’t know
it’s me.
will he?
or do those kind
of people
remember or forget
their victims?

god
has it been that long?
can he be out?
wait
they never
found him.
just the wrecked
burnt out hulk
of my car
over in shiteville.
fuck me.

you are immobile.
your feet failed
you now.
it’s like you are
stammering away
at your dad
again
a 16 year old kid
trying to weasel out of
some damn
thing or another.

then there’s a flash in his eyes
and a flash in his hand
and a pain like no other
ever in your life.
on your back
you see the stars moon
then nothing.

the only thing
left is
blood pooling
on the
sidewalk
as your life
is
bleeding out.

eddie otto is
already
around the corner
into the wind
once again.
taking the streets and
alleys like only
he can.
to his place in time
and space
in your town.

jmh

Written by john hauge

April 1, 2014 at 2:22 pm

# 500 in a series of posts

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i’d been staying at the line hotel in l.a.’s koreatown for weeks. nice place and a room with a view of the hills. newly remodeled. i knew the manager from my army days. i got a rate. i’d saved his ass from a savage beating in a dive bar in seoul back in the day. plus, i was flush with some cash from an old insurance deal that had finally settled. a good chunk of change. way more than enough to sample my way through every massage joint for several blocks in any direction with drinks and fine korean home style food at roy choi’s POT every night downstairs.

yeah, life on the large. i’d become pretty good friends with one of the massage girls. she’d even come over for drinks and dinner on occasion with some extra activity up in my room later. more drinks and sex. sex on the cuff for those occasions. she’d even sing to me in korean when we were finished. soft and lilting.

one night she’s singing away and she stops. she wants to know if i want to take a bus ride with her down to baja and ensenada next weekend. some korean travel thing but there would be chinese and viets as well. i figured maybe the change of scenery would do me some good so i agreed. she smiled and started singing again in her soft and surprisingly on pitch voice.

the next weekend rolled around and we headed off to baja with another 25 or so folks on a bus. we stopped in dago for lunch at some vaguely crappy chinese joint before heading across the border into TJ for some shopping. i bought the girl a leather purse. it seemed like it was even real leather. i guess we’d find out the first time she took it out in the rain.

a nice leisurely drive further south took most of the afternoon. we hit town and everybody checked into our motel. not the line hotel for sure. no view other than a mex rubdown joint across the street. great. almost like home. my traveling companion didn’t notice. the bus driver found us and asked if we wanted to make an unscheduled late afternoon trip. my girl said sure. i had no choice. so, back on the bus with maybe 15 or so of the 25 people on the trip.

the bus left ensanada proper at around 3:15pm bumping it’s way through the suburbs of the city. lala land type sprawl in baja. including smog. dig it. strange and enticing in a twisted way. yeah, anyway the bus was heading to the ‘la bufadora’. or some damn thing. a blow hole more or less in spanish an hour drive south of ensenada stuck out on the coast and in the middle of nowhere. a big tourista trap i’m told but then i get told lots of stuff and some of it is true. most isn’t. it doesn’t matter any more though but that’s another story.

i got sucked into this side trip like a noodle wending it’s way from a steaming bowl of soup up and into your mouth. meh. no biggy. the ride was interesting and this young vietnamese babe kept showing me some leg every chance she got. well, that was when her newly wed husband wasn’t pawing her. she had a nice twinkle in her eye when she flashed me that leg and i suspect by now they aren’t married any more. funny how life bounces, huh? i hope charlie didn’t take it to hard. he should have seen it coming. between some shot of nice asian leg and decent scenery outside the bus window the ride was over before i knew it.

stirring up plenty of it’s own dust the bus pulled into one dusty hell hole of a parking lot overlooking the ocean. it was pretty much empty with the late afternoon hour. a long walk down a row of mex vendors on each side of you selling just about anything and everything junky you could imagine with lots of food stalls thrown in for good measure. then there it was, the blow hole. la bufadora. crap. what a shit hole it was. jesus. not really a blow hole either. just some damn crevice in some damn rocks with the surf pounding into the crevice and the spray flying up into the hot afternoon mex sky. occasionally drenching the unwary tourista trying to keep their camera dry while at the same time trying get a nice shot of the stinky salt water reaching for the clouds. yeah, the fucking water smelled like piss with an undercurrent of crap. nice. but, hell this is mexico right? what else you expect gringo? nada i guess. zip zilch nada.

i guessed that the smell was originating from the sorta nice looking ‘bathrooms’ off to the side of the imitation blow hole. i was thinking the shit and piss must be flowing right out into the ocean from them. i had to take a look. i told my companion i was going to take a leak then wandered over to los banos. some old mexican babe was at a table taking money for a chance to pee or crap. 50 cents a pop. steep for a ‘clean’ shitter in baja. lots of folks were yelling and arguing and trying to get in for nada. it wasn’t working. why bother? not me. i ponyed up the half buck and in return was handed 4 pieces of semi nice double ply shit paper. oh boy. good thing i was just looking and maybe going to take a leak. walking down the steps to the bano and smell i had second thoughts. this was not going to be fun and believe me it wasn’t. a hell hole to be sure. at least my curiosity was soothed. after a sorta piss it was a walk back to the bus and the drive back into ensenada and dinner. the viet babe and my date slept the whole way back. no leg action. zip zilch nada.

dinner was at a clean and well kept fresh fish joint. and you can drink the water too gringo. nice. the beer was cold and the fish really was fresh along with being damn good. just don’t hassle the waiters, gringo. some dumb ass wanted something or another and was told there wasn’t any fresh that day or something. so, he goes off on the waiter and says i came all the way down here and i can’t get fresh whatever the fuck it is i came down here for? si, senor. not today. shit, give me the shrimp. goddamn it. ok, sport nice ugly american act. as for me, senor dos cervesas mas por favor. more beer, good bread and fish and out comes the chump’s eats. the waiter sets their food down on a small waiter like table just out of the chumps line of sight. but not mine. sipping my beer i watched as the waiter spit all over everybody’s food sitting at the loud mouths table. fuck me. nice touch jose. but then what else do you expect in baja gringo? zip zilch nada.

jmh

Written by john hauge

March 31, 2014 at 7:35 am

Who Are the Brain Police? ~ Frank Zappa & The Mothers of Invention ~

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the above mentioned song appeared on the mothers first LP, ‘freakout’, in 1968. to say it was well ahead of it’s time would be like the proverbial pot, kettle, and black name calling adage. what follows about the song, Who Are the Brain Police?, was gleaned/lifted from wikipedia:

The song’s structure was described in detail by AllMusic:

“Simply put, it is weird and creepy. A chorus of living-dead voices supports a slow and sloppy waltz beat. Lyrics make numerous references to melting plastic and chromium and repeatedly ask the question found in the song’s title (answered by the brainless chorus). Halfway through, the song breaks into a fast-paced bridge; the same happens in the coda, which includes a kazoo solo.”

“The song was stated to be a “direct defiance of top 40 radio.” Repetitive lyrics were noted as part of this “defiance.” The song was also cited by Mojo magazine as “one of the scariest songs to ever emerge from the rock psyche.” While comparing it to Kafka, Mojo described the song as “a vision of contemporary America where personal identity and individuality is erased.”

interesting, what? yep. perhaps weird and creepy but the song is much more than frank railing against the radio and music industry that wanted very little to do with him, his music or ideas.

a couple of days ago i was sitting in a dentist office reading magazines while waiting for the brown eyed girl’s appointment to be over. some of the magazines were ok but a bit borderline in their finger wagging. ‘time’ magazine sent me over the edge and into an orwellian free fall. thankfully, it’s a magazine i rarely read let alone page through.

yes, kids, long dead uncle frank pretty much nailed it. we’ve indeed become that contemporary america where we’re told what and what not to do and when and when not to do it. he also nailed a bunch of other stuff musically as well 40 years ago long before ‘american idol’ or ‘the voice’ hit the airways. though ‘the voice’ does it’s damnedest to distance itself from what a pop singer ought to look like. sorta. but that isn’t why i’m here.

don’t do that. do this. do that. not this. say this. not that. believe this. don’t believe that. don’t ever say that! eat this. not that. it’s going to kill you. this won’t kill you. or at least it won’t this week. next week? meh. vote this way. god forbid, not THAT way! think this. never that. buy this. not that. read this. never that. you really fucking need this. your government would never ever lie to you. what’s the matter with you, boy?

yeah, we’ve been erased. or our minds have. it’s only a matter of time before we ourselves will be erased for not toeing the line. count on it. your personal identity is already gone or has been stolen. individuality? that disappeared along with the so called freedoms we once had. if you haven’t noticed you haven’t been paying attention. we are all suffering from all the brain policing that’s been going on for years. though most hardly notice the day in and day out nonstop barrage of swill and we know what’s best for you crapola. it’s as if we’re all too fucking stupid to figure anything out or entitled to form our own opinions about damn near everything on our own anymore. for good or bad.

ok. sure some of you are so fucking stupid you need to be spoon fed every damn thing even if it is wrong or wrong headed. after all it is properly PC and has been vetted by legions of assorted loons, dumb asses, hacks, hustlers, and politicians from both sides of the aisle. fine. screw it. just leave me out of your fucking equation and it’s related insanity. i’m not even gonna say please. just do it. yeah, sure, like that’s gonna happen even if i say, please.

when the bells start tolling don’t say they aren’t for you because they are. by the time that circus/scenario rolls into your town it will already be too late.

jmh

Written by john hauge

March 28, 2014 at 7:28 am

the church of rock and roll

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once again, in lieu of dealing with writing something new and to get the dylan thing off the front page once and for all, i bring you one from august of 2007. it bounces around a bit but there are a few kernels of sustenance to be found in it.

jmh

i’m not sure where this one is going or even if it will make it to blog print.  as all i have is some sort of vague idea or something and a desire to see if that something ends up on the page. 

in my last blog i ran down or sorta ran down my friend, john harrelson’s, saturday night show.  another friend this morning, who was also there, brought up the religious analogy of divine intervention in regards to john’s smokin’ performance.  i sorta alluded to it as well with my fire and brimstone thingy in my last blog.  john brought it up himself yesterday evening when he mentioned a lady friend who hadn’t seen him perform before said, i can’t remember the exact quote, but something to the effect that john was a devil.  i took it as a good thing and john did as well.  the consensus being that it’s better than being called an asshole.

all of which brings us to the point of this epistle.  maybe.  john’s performance did indeed have some religious overtones but then all good rock and roll performers seem to have that aspect to their stage show persona’s.  certainly jimi, mick, john lennon, or perhaps the more obvious, george harrison.  pretty much all great rock and rollers along with some of the blues and jazz greats have it there in their mien while on stage.  perhaps some even when they are off stage and out doing what we all do.  live and breathe.  a drift for another time. 

for those of us who grew up at the very beginning of rock and roll, my first record purchase was elvis’, ‘love me tender’, in 1956.  we’ve been at this thing for a long long time.  many of us then drifted off into an obvious blues tangent along with jazz thrown in for good measure.  along with that the life of a  musician has always been sort of a back burner fantasy.  for some of us it became a way of life and a life’s work.  for others, like myself, the musician as artist never worked out like a lot of things.  though upon occasion that fantasy, even at this late stage in life, is still bubbling under or away in my brain cell depleted brain.  this is wandering all over the place though my usual readers are used to it.  i digress.

the one person that really stands out in this whole rambling sorta concept thing is the late, sam kinison. he was a preacher, of i guess, some note.  he gave that up to become a stand up comedian and one of my all time favorites.  he also wanted to be a rock and roll star.  his videos in that vein are some of the finest ever.  their tongue in cheek aspect not with standing.  sam wasn’t the first and probably won’t be the last professional religious person to sorta give that up and go rock and roll, the blues or whatever music.  or vice versa for that matter.  

i guess the whole point being that a rock and roll musician performing on stage, in some instances, not all by any means, can be looked at as a religious, or feel like a religious experience.  the same can’t be said for a motion picture actor, or at least i can’t.  not even brando at his finest ever brought a religious connotation to his performances.  or richard burton.  or elizabeth taylor.  peter o’toole.  al pacino.  ad nauseum.  for myself, stage actors would also be in the same boat. 

i suppose some painters conjure up a religious experience like the old masters and their madonnas or similar work but that’s what they started out to do.  a religious painting.  plain and simple.  monet, for example, has done some wonderful things but none of them have an inkling of a religious aspect to them other than the pure beauty of nature, color, and light. 

there is a joy and beauty to all artists work.  we are the lucky ones to sit and watch/listen as they do what they do, for our pleasure.  for me, and i think a lot of others, watching a grand performance by a rock and roller is akin to if not a religious experience.   it took awhile to get here but i hope you got the picture.

john harrelson’s music can be found at: http://cdbaby.com/cd/harrelson or visit his web site as well http://www.johnharrelson.com

jmh

 

Written by john hauge

March 27, 2014 at 7:36 am

an ode to gram parsons or john harrelson’s cd “mojave”

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this originally appeared here in september of 2008. john harrelson passed away in june of 2013. don rehkop passed away in march of 2014. may you both rest in peace, my friends.

jmh

let’s see…ok.  the boys, dfr & jwfh, were over this past evening and i cooked up a nice sorta southern down home meal for my brothers.   jwfh says i got the job.  dfr as well.  sweet.  their lips to the food network’s ears.  for those that are wondering, the brown eyed girl was busy doing stuff with her nephew.

at any rate, my sorta cooking skills aren’t why i’m here.  ah, no.  at one point i stuck john’s cd, ‘mojave’ on the cd player.  yeah, well.  i’ve been down this road before a year or so ago.  none the less, ‘mojave’, by john harrelson still kicks ass and those of you that haven’t bothered need to bother because it is that good.  trust me.  the link will follow.

we are like eating and i’m yammering about this and that music wise on the cd.  jwfh is yammering back.  i tell him the title track, ‘mojave’, is stellar and i love it when he does it live.  like who wouldn’t?

then we got to the tune, “joshua tree ’73″.  one of the finest hippy country western tunes ever written.  fuck yeah.  ” under the influence of loneliness, morphine, and desire “…sweet, jesus.  write it and sing it, jwfh.  i told jwfh that i needed to hear him do the tune next time he did a live gig.  he smiled and said, ‘yeah.’

then he went off into something i hadn’t heard before.  turns out writing the song was one of those deals that just comes from beyond type deals.  a channeling of sorts according to john.  a tune nothing like he’d ever written before.  after it it was written he was like, ‘where the hell did this come from?’

then jwfh says, ‘it’s the suicide note gram parsons never got to write.’  whoa.  fine.  i’m there.  the tune is one of those late 60′s early 70′s country western tunes that sings of life on the edge.  life, ala charlie bukowski, dressed up in a country western nudie suit.  as a veer, google, ‘nudie’ and country western outfits.  life ala what country western music means to me.  not the sugar coated crapola stuff of today.  the old days of hank williams and outlaw country.  the old hippy cosmic country.  real life angst and despair.  angst and despair dealt out from the bottom of the deck.  country as i remember it was and should still be.

my point?  you should probably, no, you should, go to:  http://cdbaby.com/cd/harrelson and buy the cd, ‘mojave’.  if you like country western/blues/rock ‘n’ roll by someone who’s lived several lifetimes playing and writing it then this cd is for you.  it’s time to jump on the bandwagon before it pulls out and heads west into that morphine induced unwritten note sunset.  um, yeah.  it’s ok, jwfh.  i understand.

‘mojave’, is one of those cd’s you listen to and need to listen to a bunch in order to get it.  it just gets better with each listen.  my brother, know this.  you knew it and did it.  i just hope there’s more comin’ down the pike.  capice?

i wrote this last night after the boys left.  i sat at the computer and listened to “joshua tree ’73″ a number of times while i finished off a bottle of sicilian red.  it’s early morning and the sun is still around an hour away.  i’m sitting at the computer again.  this time drinking coffee.  the only sound is the keyboard and the lonely night time wail of a freight train echoing north from down in de onta.  i’m still haunted by john’s joshua tree tune.  haunted by gram parsons.  haunted by my youth.

i wish i was out in joshua tree this morning.  sitting on a rock someplace and smoking a very large bowl of something or another while waiting for the sun to rise.  there’s magic out there and there’s magic in john harrelson’s tune, “joshua tree ’73″.

jmh

Written by john hauge

March 26, 2014 at 9:01 am

oscar night redux

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it’s almost oscar time yet again. it’s also time once again to trot out a couple of moldy oldies of mine to commemorate hollyweird’s biggest TV show, oscar night. the first of the two is for the more mature reader among you. however, i’m not your parents nor do i want to be. i hope you enjoy the reads.

jmh

donna di’monico

yeah, donna di’monico was her name.  a contract player for warner bros in the 40’s and 50’s.  lot’s of b westerns as second leading lady, plus the last of the serials.  she once told me, in a round about way, she had fucked howard hughes.  but she wasn’t one of his hayseed bimbos locked up in one of howie’s fuck pads.  no, not donna.  she moved and grooved to a beat all her own.

donna was an early lipstick lesbian.  when doing a bit part on an early ‘colgate comedy hour’,  she blew dino while playing dildo momma to marilyn maxwell and some make-up lady.  jerry sat and watched.  nice work if you can get it, i suppose.  as time passed she got fewer acting calls.  she never got into the older character stuff.  too much work she used to tell me.  but every once in awhile she would get some commercial work.  lever bros or one of the other yid soap joints, as she used to call them.  nice work.  easy 2 day max work.  plus the residuals were good, even in the late 60’s early 70’s.

don’t get me wrong she wasn’t hurting.  no, not donna.  she did ok.  she had plenty of time to prowl the bars on la cieniga and ventura.  out looking for some young cooze who may have seen her when she was a kid, like they were.  some kid who wanted to munch down on that well manicured carpet.  so they could say, hey, ever hear of donna di’monico?  we fucked last night.  nice old babe and still holding up ok.  god, she ate my snatch like she hadn’t eaten anything in months.  great fuck.

yeah, donna di’monico, the older she got the more genteel she became. doing charity work and joining historical societies. she got off on the historical stuff.  the older the shit was the more she was into it.  like trees.  she really got into old trees.  say 450 year old california oaks in some old downtown southern california berg gone to seed or illegal aliens.  or like this old cork tree where i live.  it’s at least a good 500 years old, probably the oldest around.  left standing when they razed the old hotel it had stood in front of for decades.  rumor has they had built the hotel there, where the cork tree stood, because it was such a beauty and old way back then.

yeah, donna di’monico.  she really got into that cork tree.  at some point she started badgering this local pbs tv guy, who was into trees as well, to come out and take a gander and shoot some video of the tree.  the cork tree and genteel historical society lady, donna di’monico.  for donna that meant another shot at some air-time, 21st century air-time.  she would email the guy weekly.  donna always got a return email from some staffer saying, thanks, we get lots of ideas and email.  we’ll give this one to the boss.  donna kept it up.  the guy finally said, ok.  the tree sounds ok.  they are coming out tomorrow morning.  only trouble is donna bought the farm last night.  yeah, donna di’monico, is dead.  so, i guess i’ll have to meet the guy out by the cork tree in the morning, which means i’m going to be her last stand in.  adios, aunt donna.

jmh

the dust and heat…

hung in the tijuana air like a freeze frame from hell.  cars honked and clamored looking for an inch in which to move.  nothing ever did.  in sunglasses and old clothes he moved through it all.  no one knew him.  he moved slowly looking for the place.  if you looked at him closely you could see the disease at work.  taking what was left of his life and mocking him with each painful step.  finally the place.  the earthly waiting room for hell. 

the bell above the door tinkled when he opened it.  as the door closed the hell from the streets outside stopped and the smell of the office over came him.  a small greasy headed man got up from behind an equally greasy desk and spoke.

ah, senor bullet, you have come.
yes, on the phone, you said you could help me?
si.  yes, i can.  por favor, follow me.

through the cluttered outer office and into the dank dismal treatment rooms they went.  a strange but familiar odor growing in the man’s nose.  the small mexican finally stopped at a dirty examination table.  he turned and said.   

please, senor, you must deesrobe.
ok. the man replied.

he was resigned to it.  it was all that was left.  this final sad humility of an approaching death.  a last chance stop on the road of life.

hokay, meester bullet, now you must assept these enemas of the coffees to cure you cancers.  por favor, on the tables.  you must spread you nalgas for me.

a tear formed in the corner of his eye as the man moved to comply.  only to be used as substance by a very large nasty house fly.

outside the dust, heat, and noise, for that moment, stopped.  something had gone from us all.  forever.  in an instant they all began to move.  again.  to oppress.  again.  moving us closer to this hell on earth.

jmh

Written by john hauge

February 28, 2014 at 1:33 pm

hot dogs for breakfast pt 2

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after hanging up the phone he went to the stove and stuck his index finger in the seed and stem tea. it was cold to the touch and probably consisted more of stems and seeds along with assorted other gunk than liquid. he turned on the burner under the pot then rummaged through a drawer until he found a small strainer. jerry placed the strainer over the mug he’d already used while he waited for the stuff to boil again.

deciding it was going to take a bit he wandered off into the living room and his stereo system. the zappa LP was still on the turntable. he picked it up and put it back into it’s sleeve then returned it to sit with the other albums. jerry began looking through them again. new riders of the purple sage seemed like a good idea. he was placing it on the turntable when the phone rang again. he went back into the kitchen. turned off the stove and picked up the phone.

hello?

hi, son.

it was his mother.

hey, ma, what’s up?

not much. your father is outside doing yard work and i just finished an apple pie for your uncle. they’re coming over for dinner tonight. so, how’s work and school? are you dating anyone?

jerry sighed. it was his mother’s usual phone gambit.

just fine, ma. just fine. the pie sounds good. trying to change the subject he said. what’s for dinner?

your dad is bbqing chicken with the usual sides.

ok. wish i was there.

you know thanksgiving isn’t that far away. are you going to come down?

i hadn’t thought about it but yeah, sure. why not? he was thinking it would probably be a better place to score a cheap brick of weed. he still knew people down there.

good. i’ll make your favorites.

pickled tongue?

of course.

great. unless you hear different i’ll see you the wednesday before the big day. in the afternoon.

ok. love you, son.

love you too, ma. say hi to pops. joe and josie too. i’ll see everyone thanksgiving.

alright. take care of yourself. he could hear the smile in his mother’s voice.

ok, ma. bye.

bye, son.

jerry replaced the phone and picked up the pot of tea and poured the remaining liquid into the mug. the strainer removed most of the crap and all of the seeds and stems. he was surprised when he found the cup to be almost full. taking a sip he grimaced a bit then went and started the new riders LP. jerry wasted the rest of the day listening to music and staying very high.

it was almost dark before he was aware of time again. maybe it was the hunger he felt. he got off the couch. stretched. tuned on a floor lamp. found another LP and put it on the machine. the allman brothers live. the first notes hit with a jolt. too bad there wasn’t a lady around.

once back in the kitchen he found the squash in the fridge and an old onion. there was rice and tomato sauce in the cupboard. no meat anywhere. it didn’t matter there was plenty of rice. he made a sauce with the onion and canned tomatoes tossing in some dried herbs and garlic powder. after chopping up the zucchini he added them to the sauce. it simmered as the rice cooked.

duane allman was ripping it. another rocker dead before his time. jerry decided to have one of the tall cans of colt .45 with dinner. he popped the tab and took a long pull. it was good. cold and tasty. dinner was ok. filling and somewhat tasty.

after dinner he drank the rest of the malt liquor he’d bought earlier in the day and smoked his last remaining joint. comfortably numb and pretty well toasted he spent the night on the couch.

the next few weeks went by quickly. work was work and fairly non-taxing with plenty of spare change to be found on the floor of denny’s. school was another matter. he just stopped going though he still got a check from the VA for the past month. he wasn’t sure why he’d quit but it was as if he wasn’t really there anyway. it was hard to fit in again after the nam. the nam. he kept that to himself as best he could. no point in making it well known. all things considered it seemed like a good idea.

the wednesday before thanksgiving he got up early and headed south. it was an 8 hour car trip that went fairly well. jerry was looking forward to seeing the relatives and eating all that good food. piles of it to be sure. the trip south was uneventful. he arrived at his old home around 2 in the afternoon.

the garage door was closed which meant no one was probably home. no matter, there was a key in the garage. his father liked the door open as it was easier to move around and work in the garage that way. if someone was home the door stayed open until around sunset. he parked his car in the street. grabbed his bag and went around the north side of the house. the back gate was closed and the dog on duty sign was still there. his dog. the dog had died while jerry was in nam. the gate was unlocked as always and the back garage door was open. also as always. he went inside the garage. as he’d figured, the car wasn’t there. his dad had built a row of large cabinets when they’d moved in years ago. jerry opened the one closest to the door.

he reached inside and up into the second shelf. he found the nail and the key hanging from it. taking the key he unlocked the back door and then replaced the key it on it’s nail. as always. it was SOP. his dad had drilled that into him long long ago.

the house smelled good. his mother must have been busy getting ready for the big day tomorrow. turkey day. he took his bag and went through the house to his old room. it was like he’d never left. it was just like it had been for years. the double bed. a small desk and chair by the mail slot. the desk was covered with a sheet of glass which in turn was covered with surfboard company decals.

he paused and looked at the decals then ran his hand over them. memories. deciding he was hungry he went back into the kitchen to see what he could scrounge. it was then he noticed the note on the kitchen table. it was for his aunt. apparently she was bringing something over for turkey day. of course, she knew about the key. the note said his parents were at bellevue cemetery putting flowers on a grave. it also said his mother would call her sister later. jerry figured they were at his grandparents grave site.

forgetting he was hungry jerry decided to surprise his parents by going to the cemetery. besides he hadn’t been to visit his grandparents grave in a number of years. plus, there was a gas station across the street from bellevue and he needed gas for his ride anyway. so, jerry locked up and headed south to the cemetery.

on the way down he didn’t see his parents heading home. he figured he was on the route his dad would use. they must still be at the cemetery. he’d get gas later. turning into bellevue’s drive he noticed his father’s car over in the newer area of the cemetery. his grandparents grave site was in the older section behind the mausoleum. what was up? finding it interesting he followed the road toward his parent’s car.

jerry parked behind is dad’s ford. got out and walked towards his parents. their back was to him and his dad appeared to be holding his mom up. her shoulders were shaking. was she crying? what in the world was going on? as he got closer he called out to them. nothing. maybe they couldn’t hear him.

he was almost upon them when they turned towards him. his mother had been crying. jerry smiled and said.

mom. dad. what’s going on?

they looked right through him. his mother still crying. they didn’t say anything or otherwise acknowledged his presence. for good or bad. in fact, they silently walked right by him as they returned to their car. jerry stood there for a moment and watched them.

dad? mom?

it was all he could think to say. baffled he turned towards the grave where they had been standing. there were fresh flowers and a small american flag on a stick stuck in the ground next to the flowers. it was then he saw it. the gravestone. on it was his birthday and a day in june from the year before. along with that was jerry’s name and army rank.

they found jerry’s bag beside his bed when one of the young second cousins had gone into his old room to take a nap after dinner on thanksgiving day. it freaked everyone out to be sure. however, there never was an acceptable explanation as to why or how the bag got there in the first place.

jmh

hot dogs for breakfast

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jerry stood at the kitchen sink. a bit off to the side of it in front of the bay window. the sky was cloudy grey and he could see the tall dormant sycamores in the dim early morning light. their long leafless limbs reaching upward. he was eating a hot dog.it was nestled in a single piece of wheat bread. his early morning dog consisted of swiss cheese, mustard, mayo, along with bread and butter pickle slices and a handful of potato chips on the side. it usually served as his go to breakfast. though there was something to be said about grits mixed with creme fresh, parmesan, and topped with a fried egg covered with a generous dollop of his homemade asian chili sauce. finishing the sandwich he chased it with a glass of milk. the glass emptied the carton.

he rinsed off the dish and glass then set them in the sink to be washed later. probably after dinner. probably being the operative word. it was time for work. not work in it’s usual sense. jerry hadn’t worked in several months. though he had a job. a semi full time job working for a janitorial service. one afternoon he decided to not go into work. that one afternoon had stretched into a month or more. he hadn’t bothered to call the office. and they hadn’t bothered to call him. the company keys still sat in a drawer by the back door. he’d been living on his GI bill college benefit. a meager sum to be sure. he would probably have to go back to work soon because he’d given up on going to school as well. once the VA realized he was no longer in school that check would stop. that would probably happen soon enough.

it really didn’t matter to jerry. not much did. what mattered was having enough money to live on with enough left over for a few quarts of colt .45 and some decent smoke everyday. cigarettes too. the real ones. not the crap in the can or bag which left you to roll your own. he’d been doing that for the past couple of weeks. if there was one thing that would get him back to work it would be his need for ready made cigarettes and decent smoke. one could always scrape up enough cash for some malt liquor. regardless.

his job that morning was to go through some stems and seeds one last time in order to cull enough weed to get him through the day. he thought there was a slim chance at finding enough for at least one large joint. jerry pulled the baggie of seeds and stems from the cupboard along with some rolling papers and a shoe box lid. he sat at the kitchen table and slowly went went through what was left in the baggie. it had started out as a couple of ounces of some very nice jamaican weed. heady stuff. he’d scored it along with several grams of peruvian flake back when he had what could almost be said plenty of cash. sort of. jerry had paid for the smoke but the coke had been a credit deal. a credit deal which would soon become payable.

the only sound in the house was the seeds dropping onto the shoe box lid. he’d lift one end up where the seeds lay and slowly lift a few up with an old playing card. a jack of diamonds. the process wasn’t unlike panning for gold. that analogy wasn’t lost on jerry. the seeds ended up at the bottom and the dope, which was lighter, stayed up on the top. he kept it up for a half hour or so until all the seeds from the baggie had been carefully gone through. then he carefully picked over the stems once again. when he was finished he figured he had enough for a nice after dinner smoke.

the problem being there wouldn’t be anything to get him through the day. as he was still sitting at the table rolling up his last lonely joint the phone rang. jerry glanced at the phone as he licked the glue on the rolling paper and give smoke a last flick of the fingers. he dropped the blunt on top of the seeds and got up to answer the phone.

hello?

jerry? it’s sid.

the coke on credit had just come due. he bolstered up what he thought was some bravado but doubted sid was buying any of it.

hey, sid, what’s up?

not much. look, the reason i’m calling is i haven’t heard from you and my end is looking for their final payment. i need my money.

ah, shit. yeah, man i um been meaning to get down there. you know work school and all…

yeah, i get it. when can i expect you?

tomorrow evening at the latest.

ok. i’ll be seeing you soon then.

you got it. later, man.

later.

jerry hung up the phone. said, shit, and realized he wasn’t going to be heading down to sid’s place anytime soon. or anytime at all ever again for that matter. sadly, it meant no more flake for sure. ah, well. at least smoke was easier to find. you just needed some cash. thankfully, sid had no idea where he lived. no idea other than the city. sighing he went back to the table. as he was about to toss the stems and seeds out a thought hit him. tea. he’d never done it but he could brew up some tea with the stems and seeds.

he filled pot up with water and sat it on the stove. he turned on the burner and went to the fridge. he found an old lemon with some life left in it and sliced it up. by the time the water was boiling he was looking forward to his home brew. he turned off the gas and dropped the lemon slices into the hot water. then he carefully put the stems into the pot. he used a spoon to get them submerged. he followed with the seeds. putting a lid on the concoction he left it to steep. he needed some music.

he thumbed through his LP collection searching for something that fit the mood and the day. he settled upon frank zappa’s semi jazzy, ‘waka jawaka’. long instrumentals that made him think of rain and snow. very soothing. the music filled the house. jerry sat on the couch almost drifting off to sleep. the sound of the turntable turning itself off roused him. he flipped the LP over then he started side two. he figured the tea had sat long enough and went back into the kitchen.

the kitchen smelled of something. almost unpleasant. he lifted the lid on the pot and the smell grew stronger. it was tinged with lemon. the water had turned a dark color and was still warm. jerry thought of english breakfast tea. he found a mug and carefully poured some of the liquid into it. smelled it. held his breath and drank. he nailed the cup all at once. cringed a bit then thought it wasn’t all that bad. just different. he filled the mug again and drank. ok, he thought, now i wait.

while waiting he finished dressing and decided he should hit the grocery store while he still had some cash. filling the car’s gas tank was also in order. deciding he wasn’t feeling anything from his tea he thought it had been a waste of time and energy as he turned off the music and headed out the door to his ride and the store.

the drive to the store was uneventful. though as he was parking he began to feel THC jolts up his spine. by the time he got inside the store it was obvious his shopping trip was probably a big mistake. he was getting blown away. not a bad thing but he wasn’t so sure about getting home now. he was also sure a shopping trip alone and high wasn’t a good idea as well. as he turned to leave the floor rose to meet him and began grow wavy. great. just fucking great were his thoughts. things were going to get weird.

as he got to the exit he realized not scoring some malt liquor for that night would be stupid. hopefully there was something at home for dinner. he turned around and made his purchase. the checker turned out to be a pretty young thing around his age that he hadn’t seen or noticed before. hopefully, he’d remember her.

carefully driving home he tried to remember when he had been this stoned before. the nam probably or before that a trip into l.a. to see the kinks live after taking some mescaline. he’d thought he was surfing and shooting the pier while going under the 405 and 10 underpass. his passengers hadn’t been very happy to hear that.

making it home in one piece was a relief. he put the colt .45 in the refrigerator and noticed some zucchini. dinner he thought as the phone rang. with any luck it wasn’t sid again. had he given the checker his number? he had no idea. he picked up the receiver.

yeah.

jerry?

larry?

it sounded like his work partner, larry mitchell.

yep. man, where you been? pete’s been fucking wondering and worrying.

ah, yeah, i bet.

you know the keys and all.

safe in a drawer in the kitchen.

ok. you planning on coming back to work? it’s been a while to say the least.

yeah, sure.

at least it finally dawned on pete to find out just what the fuck was going on. good ole pete. more concerned about the swinger parties he attended than anything else.

when?

fighting the high he said, tuesday. he thought today was saturday. though he wasn’t sure. at any rate, tuesday was their day they did the floors at a local denny’s. lots of change on the floor under the tables and in the creases of the booths. gas and malt liquor money.

ok.

yeah, see you at 2. the usual.

fine. i’ll tell pete. later, man.

ok.

as he hung up the phone he realized there was more tea left in the pot on the stove. it was going to a good rest of the day of whatever day of the week it was. yeah, a good day.

jmh

bob dylan & chrysler ~ the worst super bowl commercial ever ~

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long ago back in the 70′s, the humor magazine, the harvard lampoon begat the semi sorta more mainstream humor magazine, the national lampoon. which in turn, begat all the national lampoon movies of the same name. for the purposes of this epistle we’ll only concern ourselves with the national lampoon magazine. the national lampoon was hilarious and very irreverent which made it even funnier. really good stuff. sadly, it ceased publication back in 1998. too bad you missed it.

i fondly remember a certain one time comic strip concerning bob dylan. you have to remember this was in the early 70′s and bob was still riding high as a counter-culture hero. one of the poet laureates of the generation as it were. yeah, heady shit to be sure for little bobby zimmerman. at any rate, the cartoon strip cast the singer as a phony and calculating fraud of epic proportions. satire at it’s finest. or was it?

don’t get me wrong, bob was and still is one of my favorite musicians of the era. yeah, even though he’s sold his soul to the man. a sad sad thing. sure others of his and my generation have sold out as well. there’s a good number of them featured or have been featured in ads. although not necessarily in person like little bobby but their tunes are there. to my mind his actually appearing in the bleeding ad makes it even worse. what kind of a horses ass writes songs like: gates of eden, the masters of war, (like a) rolling stone, queen jane approximately, and desolation row, just to name a few, then does a 180 degree paragon shift?

i guess the guys at national lampoon were way way ahead of the curve. the first to realize that things may or may not have been as they appeared with little bobby zimmerman. he’s become what he once professed to hate. a sad caricature of his once self. a huckster now. a cheap sideshow entertainer only in it for the money. yes, a zappa riff there. at least frank was up front about it.

am i going to burn all my dylan CD’s? ah, probably not. i just might not listen to em much anymore. sadly. though it just goes to show that the more things change the more they stay the same. crass cheap hucksterism aside, i wouldn’t buy a chrysler if little bobby zimmerman paid for it with all his money. chrysler, which my wife, the brown eyed girl points out, is owned by fiat. a eurolander company. yeah, bobby, buy american and support italia. more incongruity.

ginsberg, ferlinghetti, kerouac, seeger, and even bukowski are rolling over in their collective graves. tsk tsk bobby. congratulations, you’ve an become an irrelevant ass hat.

“there are no kings inside the gates of eden.” from the song,”gates of eden”, by bob dylan.

jmh

Written by john hauge

February 3, 2014 at 11:07 am

2013-14 college football bowl game picks & predictions

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at long last we finally see the BCS BS drift out to sea with the tide on a flaming funeral pyre worthy of king odin himself. adieu, sweet BCS. we come not mourn it but to bury it. ah well, cheap prose aside, the brinks trucks will still be backing up to off load their small, used, and completely laundered cash to all the deans, AD’s, conference commissioners, TV executives, and all the other assorted college football hangers-on across this once great land. however, one of the great axioms of life, be careful what you wish for, looms around the corner. though that corner won’t be around till next year at this time.

bowl season. the extracurricular college football season meant to line the pockets of everyone far and wide in the land of the halls of ivy. of course, if you haven’t played your cards right you’re left out in the bowl cold. no golden cash cow for you, pilgrim. perhaps next year. or the year after. the carrot is dangled. hope springs eternal in the gloomy halls of the have nots and wannabes. next year, kids. next year.

i used to love bowl games. not anymore. yeah, there’s a handful i’ll tune into every year but the list grows shorter with the passing of time. plus i have a new wrinkle, this year DISH has added HBO on demand to their menu. woo hoo. ‘the sopranos’ in their six seasons of glory all there for the viewing. i have something else to watch now instead of my meager few bowl games. works for me. pass the dago red. i only have until december 31st or that’s what they say before tony and crew vanish. sure, i’ve got the whole thing in a boxed DVD set. but who knows how to run a DVD player anymore? ours just sits there like some brick-a-brack collecting dust so the cleaning lady can make the occasional feeble stab at dusting it.

yes, i know. you aren’t here for that. you want a bowl line-up run down. fine with me. you’ll get one. not all of them but a few i may or may not actually tune into while waiting for the next episode of ‘the sopranos’ to download. another sad fact of life is most of the bowl games are junk junkets at best. crack whores dressed as sexily clad sirens luring hicks and hucksters alike to warmer climes. come. spend your cash. watch your team play some other 6 and 6 team. either team may or may not be into said bowl or even playing football this time of year. but who cares? not us. bring your money on down. be drunken sailors on leave for a few days or better yet, a week. so what if you end up with a DUI or herpes or a six inch gash on the back of your head from that full can of PBR lobbed in your general direction during half time while you stood in line for 25 minutes so you could pee in a trough urinal with 10 or 15 of your new best friends. sweet. it doesn’t get any better than that. right? boy howdy, i’ll wager not.

it’s all about the money, kids. with some other stuff thrown in for good measure. football is on the list. somewhere. you may have to do some digging and if you’re very lucky you may even find it. off the top of my head i’m thinking you’ll probably find jimmy hoffa before you’ll find any football.

i don’t waste my time with points or spreads or whatever with the bowl games. just straight up picks. for those that are still reading and maybe even care a tad my overall percentage for my picks this season ended up at 61.3%. a good 10 points above my usual mediocrity.

rock ‘n’ roll.

12-21 las vegas bowl. fresno st vs usc. i may watch this game. or some of it. to bad cajun ed isn’t still around. the sark hire by the trojans is a head scratcher for sure. take the trojans. FIGHT ON!!!

12-30 alamo bowl. oregon vs texas. the ducks need to win this game in order to quell the ‘it’s a coaching problem’ talk. QUACK!!! QUACK!!!

12-31 sun bowl. virginia tech vs ucla. coach mora got a wagon load of money to stay at ucla. if he hadn’t he would have replaced sark in seattle. take ucla.

12-31 chick-fil-a bowl. miami vs texas a&m. one i’ll probably watch. it’s either johnny boys last college game or he begins his heisman campaign anew. hopefully, the month lay off hasn’t raised more issues with his off field behavior. take the aggies.

1-1 capital one bowl. s. carolina vs wisconsin. i’m hoping the capital one guys will be trotting out some new commercials as they’re generally good for a few laughs. the game? take the badgers.

1-1 the rose bowl. michigan st vs stanford. the grand pappy of em all. one i usually watch or at least some of it anyway. though no matter how snooty the bib and tucker crowd in pasadena tries to make the day it’s just another lackluster stab at debauchery and the dry heaves while running for some faded roses who’s smell was bred out of them years ago. there’s a kentucky derby simile in there some place. le gran pooh bah. the stale old vichy french could do no better. as the day drags on i suppose a game lurks about somewhere. the PAC(8)(10)12 vs the BIG 10(12)(?). the storied rivalry of your great grandparents played on the first day of the new born year. the san gabriel mountains glisten in the winter sun as a backdrop. they actually do turn purple as the sun sinks into the pacific. every year i pray for a deluge of biblical proportions if only to stem the tide of snowbirds fed up with their snow and cold. sadly,rain hasn’t happened in decades on jan 1. besides it’s already to late. that train left the tracks back in the early 60′s. however, it won’t stop me from my yearly ritual. the game? screw it. at this point who cares? not i, pilgrim. not i. however, if you do take stanford for the win.

1-6 BCS championship game. florida st vs auburn. the last one of it’s kind. ever. or that’s the thinking. though i guess there’s a possibility of it returning if the next deal doesn’t pan out. get real, that is a possibility. lots of stuff returns. kinda like the ‘touristas’ if you aren’t careful. hmmm. i don’t much care for this game and haven’t watched it in years. neither should you. why? it happens way too long after the season is over. plus, i’ll be busy getting ready for elvis’ birthday on the 8th. come on over. there’ll be drinks. way way to much fattening food. bowl upon bowl of all manner of pills. maybe even some demerol. that by the way is all a joke. i digress. the game itself is one long TV commercial with a few moments of football tossed in every once in a while. you could DVR it and watch it later but why? meh. let’s see. the rose bowl committee, escorts, and strippers from all over the world get another shot at fleecing the poor folk who come into town for the game. yeah, it off loads plenty of cash into the local economy. but you have to ask yourself, is it all worth it? probably not. yes, the chambers of commerce scalawags would argue otherwise. that’s their prerogative. and job. mine is to avoid them and their ilk whenever possible. i won’t be watching but i’d take florida st to win.

thanks for reading this and all my other football insanity this year. some of you get it. others, well, you know. i hope all of you have a joyous and merry christmas season. i hope santa brings you everything you want. sure why not? right? i also hope you have a healthy and prosperous new year. be safe. be semi sane. i’ll see you in nine months or so.

jmh

2013 college football picks and predictions week 15

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not a great week 14 but i did go 6 for 10 and i had michigan. too bad i didn’t pick auburn. my over all going into league championship week is now, 87 for 140. at least i’m well above 50%. with the way things have been going around here i’m actually glad to see the end of the college football year in my headlights. this then becomes one less thing on my to do list. though i suppose things could be worse. thankfully they aren’t.

as always remember this is for entertainment purposes only. using anything written here as gambling advice would be very detrimental to your financial health. do not do it.

the odds, points, spreads used here may change up or down over the course of the week. it doesn’t matter as i use what’s here to determine my wins and losses.

in general, championship week doesn’t present the greatest of line-ups. but i’ve got to fill up the 10 spots on my dance card.

rock ‘n’ roll.

12-5 louisville @ cincinnati. louisville favored by 3 points. the also ran matchup for the american conference. both schools with similar records. though i suppose you could say louisville had a somewhat more difficult schedule. i’m supposing louisville could still win the conference if ucf losses saturday to smu. like that’s going to happen. i digress. take louisville to win and cover.

12-6 bowling green @ n. illinois. n. illinois favored by 3 points. MAC championship game. this year’s sole remaining BCS darling’s last chance at running the table. my guess is they will. i’m somewhat surprised by the slim point spread. take the northern illini to win and cover.

12-7 oklahoma @ oklahoma st. oklahoma st favored by 10. 5 points. one of the best games of the weekend with oklahoma bragging rights on the line. the big 12′s lack of a championship game sort of makes the actual winner of the conference one of those algebra test questions/equations that used to give you the cold sweats back in the day. to keep things simple i’m taking the cowboys to win and cover.

12-7 utah st @ fresno st. fresno st favored by 3 points. MW championship game. the mountain west still gets little respect from just about everyone. sad but true. i’ll take them over the MAC or american any day but i digress. the bulldogs lost focus last week for their only loss of the year in a wild shoot out the conference was once noted for putting on the board most weeks. utah st is and has been playing fairly well. probably a good game for couch watching. i’m taking fresno st to win and cover.

12-7 texas @ baylor. baylor favored by 13.5 points. some sort of vague texas bragging rights on the line here. it seems as if baylor has hit the wall for the year. texas on the other hand is on an upswing. sort of. i like texas to get inside the spread. they may even win. take the longhorns.

12-7 duke @ florida st. florida st favored by 29.5 points. ACC championship game. when was the last time you put college football and duke in the same sentence? my point exactly. of course they could win this one. highly doubtful but you never know. once again, florida st’s game to lose. plenty of points make it tempting to take duke. i’m resisting. take florida st to win and cover.

12-7 ohio st @ michigan st. ohio st favored by 6 points. BIG 10 championship. the buckeyes ran into trouble last week against big blue. more trouble looms this week with the other ‘m’ word. yes, as juvenile as that is it does go to show just how lame folks can be. for that reason only take michigan st to win. well, there are other reasons as well but that one is the best reason. take michigan st to at least get inside the points.

12-7 stanford @ arizona st. arizona st favored by 3.5 points. PAC 12 championship. at the beginning of the season i pointed out that the sun devils were a possible PAC south contender. they’ve proved to be just that and obviously more. the trees have slogged on as well. i like the trees but perhaps destiny is on the side of the sun devils this year. take arizona st to win and cover.

12-7 missouri @ auburn. auburn favored by 1.5 points. SEC championship. i’m a tide fan though not a fan of coach satan. however, it is nice to see someone else in this game other than bama. sue me. it’s especially nice to see missouri here. my guess is auburn will be all chest thumpy after spoiling the tide’s season. tiger vs tiger. sort of like mad magazines spy vs spy. or maybe not. i like missouri. take them.

12-7 south florida @ rutgers. rutgers favored by 7 points. like i said earlier, the dance card needed filling out. this game is like dancing with your cousin. yeah, it’s dancing but it really isn’t dancing dancing if you get my drift. take rutgers to win and cover.

the semi official end of the college football year as the BCS heads off into the sunset. enjoy your week and weekend. be safe. be semi sane.

jmh

Written by john hauge

December 2, 2013 at 4:18 am

2013 college football picks and predictions week 14

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a rather dismal week 13 in more ways than one. my lone stand out prediction being oklahoma st beating baylor. once again i’ll take what little i can. the worst week of the season for me. i went 4 for 10 making my over all 81 for 130 after last weeks games. still nothing stellar but actually better than i usually am at this point in the year. hey, it’s another week and time to get back on track.

thanksgiving week used to be THE college football rivalry week. i suppose it still is to a certain extent but no where near like it used to be. though there are still enough of the old rivalries around to keep us old timers at least somewhat interested in the games being played this week. back in the days of my youth, and many lifetimes ago, thanksgiving day meant the men and boys in our family went to a juco football game that pitted the two local jc’s playing on turkey day. it was always a late morning game but it meant the family dinner was put off until much later in the day. it went on for a number of years but nona and the moms eventually won out. it also meant no more football games in person on turkey day. history. yawn.

this is for entertainment purposes only. using what’s presented here as legal or illegal wagering advise would be supremely stupid on your part. do not do it. if you really want to blow your paycheck send it to me and i’ll process it into my bank account free of charge. no vigorish either. such a deal. wire paladin, san francisco. i digress.

the points used here may or may not change over the course of the week. it makes no difference as i use what’s here to determine my wins and losses for this week. at the time of this being published there were 3 games with no lines.

rivalry week games. anything can happen which makes it my favorite week of the season. though the last couple of weeks are giving this week plenty of competition.

rock ‘n’ roll.

11-28 ole miss @ mississippi st. no line. there’s no reason for picking this game other than it happens to be on thanksgiving day. ole miss should win but the last few weeks have shown us what should happen and what actually does happen are at times two different things. take ole miss for the win.

11-28 texas tech @ texas. texas favored by 4 points. if the red raiders were having a better season this could be an interesting shoot out. sadly, they aren’t. both schools have had 2 weeks to get ready. the longhorns seem to have turned things around. at least for now. take texas to win and cover.

11-29 oregon st @ oregon. no line. the civil war game. if the beaves were having a better season this would be more interesting. where have we heard that before? as for my beloved ducks we’ll have to wait and see if the they can climb out of their hole and take care of business against state. the once high hopes, well for me, for both oregon teams (especially the ducks) dashed against a rocky sea wall this year. coaching? i wonder. or the wear and tear of the season? speed but no bulk in the lines? at any rate, all things considered anything can happen in this game. i have no other choice for this game. take the ducks for the win. QUACK!!! QUACK!!!

11-30 alabama @ auburn. the iron bowl. alabama favored by 10.5 points. plenty on the line here. bama took last week off by playing road kill state. something i just don’t get. auburn actually had the week off. two weeks to get ready for this home game. it’s nice when you can work the schedule for it to happen. auburn is doing well but i think the tide has to much going for it to drop this game. take alabama to cover and win. ROLL TIDE!!!

11-30 ohio st @ michigan. ohio st favored by 13.5 points. had big blue won last week this game would have had a bit more flavor going for it. still, probably a good game. out on a limb here and probably a crazy idea but i’m taking michigan to get inside the points. take big blue.

11-30 notre dame @ stanford. stanford favored by 14 points. the trees are back in the PAC (8)(10)12 driver seat. look at this game as a tune-up for the PAC championship game. and the domers are a good team to tune-up with. this game could go sideways but i’m taking the trees to win and cover.

11-30 florida st @ florida. no line. this is the noles game to lose. simple as that. take florida st to win.

11-30 ucla @ usc. usc favored by 3.5 points. crosstown rivals. cajun ed has the trojans fired up and they’re playing well and on a roll. ex coach lane thinks coach o should get the job. maybe. the bruins have backed themselves out of the PAC south title picture. will they show up this week ready to play? yeah, more than likely. after all it is lotus land bragging rights for the next year. a vague to slim chance of showers beginning turkey day and right up through saturday game time. it might make a difference if they do show up. not many points. call it a toss up. take the trojans to win and cover. FIGHT ON!!!

11-30 clemson @ s. carolina. s. carolina favored by 5 points. both schools took last week off and played sandlot flag football games against their younger and smaller cousins. a must win situation for clemson. which would be right where the old ball coach wants them on his home turf. another tide spread.
i’m taking the gamecocks to win and cover.

11-30 texas a&m @ missouri. missouri favored by 4.5 points. the tigers need to win. simple as that. johnny boy has probably played his way out of another heisman with a poor showing and a loss last week. another one of those, can they bounce back things. i’m of the mind now that johnny probably doesn’t win it again he’s got his mind and sights set on the NFL for next year. just sayin’. a slim margin for the tigers but take mizz to win and cover at home.

happy turkey day and week, my friends. mine will be rather subdued. an early morning ride out to visit the still recovering brown eyed girl in the hills of beverly then back here for whatever i can throw together resembling something vaguely turkey dayish and some TV football. dago red to be sure as well. be safe and be semi sane. especially out on the road over the holiday. “so, if you’re out tonight, don’t forget, if you’re riding your bike, wear white.”~~ jagger/richards

jmh

2013 college football picks and predictions week 13

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i did marginally better this week thanks to two things. the first being there was no line for the oregon game when i published this early last monday. secondly, the improbable hail mary catch to ice the auburn game. i’ll take what i can get. at any rate, my weekend saw me going 6 for 10. making my overall for the year 77 for 120.

why is it so hard to find 10 games this late in the season that i’d actually want to sit down and watch? exactly. this week’s round of games were just as hard to pick as the first couple of weeks usually are. once again, just like last year, we have alabama taking the week off by playing road kill juco st this late in the season. in truth, they aren’t the only school doing the same thing this week. why is this happening on a yearly basis? assorted pundits want me to believe when the BCS bids us aloha at the end of the year this practice of playing FCS or lower schools will not be happening anymore. or as often. really? i’ll believe that when i see it and i won’t be holding my breath.

the whole insanity of scheduling and then playing interstate 40 cafe & gas tech has gotten to the cringe worthy stage. i suppose if you’re the dean of mom & pop a&m the money that exchanges hands is a nice thing. money exchanging hands is generally a good thing. though it doesn’t make for watchable college football when that’s the only case for it happening. even if chicken & waffles poly technic pulls off the upset of the decade. one season changing upset doesn’t make the practice worthwhile. sue me. i guess we’ll just have to wait and see what happens next year. though i’m sure AD’s across the land have already scheduled plenty of miserable games for us to sift through next year. the mantra of, ‘it’s too late to change things now’ will be heard far and wide. sigh.

this mess is for entertainment purposes only. never ever use what you read here as wagering advice. set fire to your paycheck in other ways. we’re clear on this, right? good. the odds or points presented here may change over the course of the week. i use what’s here to determine my wins and losses.

rock ‘n’ roll.

11-20 n. illinois @ toledo. n. illinois favored by 2.5 points. northern illinois is everyones BCS buster darling of the year. if they continue to win it will be interesting to see what happens. toledo is doing OK but it is the MAC and the MAC isn’t one of my favorites. why did i pick this game? diversity? middle of the week college football? no idea. though some folks are enamored with the illinois team. meh. toledo is winning. not like illinois but winning. this is toledo’s bowl game even with their 7 wins. take toledo to win.

11-22 navy @ san jose st. san jose st favored by 2 points. this is an odd match-up if there ever was one. see above. however, it is kind of nice to see navy playing a football game on the 50th anniversary of JFK’s death. was this intentional or just a random scheduling quirk type thing? i don’t know. if you’re up in the san jose area this would be a good way to spend a part of your day either at the stadium or if not watching on TV at home. the midshipmen win this one for the skipper of the PT-109. if it were up to me, that’s how i would be selling it to the kids at navy all week long. take navy inside the points and or for the win.

11-23 oklahoma @ kansas st. kansas st favored by 4 points. the sooners should have no problem taking down the wildcats even on their home turf. despite what the odds writers say. we’ll see. me? i’m taking the sooners to win or get inside the points.

11-23 wisconsin @ minnesota. wisconsin favored by 15. this one has a shot at being a pretty good game. either that or the badgers blow out the golden gophers at home. either way. i’m taking wisconsin to win and cover.

11-23 usc @ colorado. usc favored by 22 points. is there any way we can rescind colorado’s invite into the PAC(8)(10)12? just a thought. cajun ed seems to have things back on track at usc. if there is no let down after beating the trees they should take care of colorado without any problem. or that’s the hope. cajun ed has his george costanza do the opposite thing going and it’s working very well so far. can he keep the job? win out ed and take the bowl game then maybe so. maybe so. the crux of the job interview begins here. don’t let the buffaloes win this one or even get close. yes, coach o, most things happen for a reason. take the trojans. FIGHT ON!!!

11-23 oregon @ arizona. oregon favored by 18 points. the ducks need to win. simple as that to have any shot at playing in the PAC north title game. mariota shreds. take the ducks to win and cover. QUACK!!! QUACK!!!

11-23 arizona st @ ucla. arizona st favored by 2.5 points. kind of a surprise that. at least this week i should have the bruins playing on the correct day of the week unlike last week. traffic in and around pasadena shouldn’t be as miserable as it was for last friday nights game. it will be bad but not with the added friday night going home from work/leaving town traffic tossed in for good measure. i digress. one of the better games of the week. i’m not making the mistake i made last week and taking the out of town fave. take the bruins to at the least get inside the maven’s meagerness.

11-23 byu @ notre dame. byu favored by 1 point. another toss up. the golden domers have played themselves out of any big time big dance bowl games this year. though if they win here and next week against the trees things might change. how much remains to be seen. notre dame wins at home.

11-23 baylor @ oklahoma st. baylor favored by 8.5 points. probably the most interesting game of the week because it could be a shoot out of epic proportions. along with it being two of the BCS big boys. baylor wins but doesn’t cover the spread. take the cowboys to get inside or maybe win.

11-23 texas a&m @ lsu. lsu favored by 4 points. it surprised me when i finally noticed this game. i’d changed my tenth game twice and when i was looking up the odds i saw this one. i wonder where it had been hiding? johnny boy needs to shine and i think he will. two weeks to rest and glue a game face on. works for me. not many points pretty much straight up. take a&m to at least get inside the slim point pickens and probably even win.

enjoy your week and try to remain safe and semi sane over the weekend. the brown eyed girl and love of my life is improving but is looking at at least one more surgery in a month or so. good thoughts and prayers are still most welcome. thanks.

jmh

a little football & reflections on 11-22-63

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the historical day and week are almost upon us. that fifty years ago thing with bad back jack. an avid family footballer even with said bad back and all his other psychical and medical problems. he and elvis. a game of football at the drop of a hat. no, not together but they could have shared drug knowledge stuff and scripts if they had. yes, the world changed that afternoon 50 years ago. the biggest seismic event to proceed it was pearl harbor. i guess we’re still waiting for the next big one. yeah, of course, 9-11. although i’m almost to the jessie ventura state of mind on that event. i digress. no, more like hitting a patch of black ice on a mountain road late at night.

i was sorta looking forward to this 50th anniversary that began our slow ride to perdition. not anymore. the point being, all the network suits, ties, hacks, douche bags, hustlers, grifters, shysters, morons, pathetic con-men, long dead, or we thought they were, news hucksters, oliver stones, flacks, and just the general ass hats of society have ruined what should have been an attempt at some sort of closure for those of us who sat through that sad long four or five day TV weekend 50 years ago that forever changed us all. many of us out here in the once bucolic farmland hinterlands of the lotus land megalopolis who on sunday night just said, enough, then left the TV madness and packed a local movie house that was running ‘lawrence of arabia’. a very large standing room only crowd. maybe the fire marshall didn’t get the memo. or he was among us trying to hide out as well.

the same movie house that not that many years later turned into a porno palace and ran ‘deep throat’ all day and night for what seemed like months upon months. that sad lonely road to perdition. the road we’ve been on ever since that november long ago. a gloomy, dark, and rat infested highway deep into the very bowels of hell. yup, a sort of luke the drifter veer. though i think apt none the less.

something was written not long after the tragic event by someone who could actually write and hold a thought or two together penned: “johnny boy, we hardly knew ye.” and ourselves as well. after all these years we have no one to blame but ourselves.

jmh

Written by john hauge

November 15, 2013 at 5:01 am

2013 college football picks and predictions week 12

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the brown eyed girl and love of my life continues to improve. however, it will be at least a couple of months before things are anywhere near normal around these parts. your good thoughts and or prayers on her behalf are still most welcome. about the only thing normal around here is i’m back to using the points/odds/spreads again this week along with publishing this insanity early monday morning again. yes, i’m repeating myself.

things didn’t start off very well last week and my picks didn’t improve much over the weekend. i went 5 for 10 bringing my season overall to 71 for 110. nothing stellar but i’ll take it.

as always this is for entertainment purposes only. never use anything here for legal or illegal wagering. do not do it. stupid is as stupid does. you’ve been warned. one more, as always…the odds/points used here may change over the week. i use what’s presented here to determine my wins and losses for the week.

rock ‘n’ roll.

11-14 georgia tech @ clemson. clemson favored by 10.5 points. the yellow jackets have won 3, lost 3, and won 3. a semi sort of nice symmetry to their season. from where i’m sitting it looks like they’ll begin another streak this week with a loss to clemson. take clemson to win and cover the point spread.

11-15 washington @ ucla. ucla favored by 2.5 points. the huskies thumped colorado this past week but then who hasn’t this year? the bruins almost gave the game away in the fourth quarter to the sun devils. this should be an interesting game and a good way to spend an early saturday evening. well, at least it will be early out here. tight point spread. not even the home court 3 for the bruins. so cal homer says take the bruins to win and cover.

11-16 iowa st @ oklahoma. oklahoma favored by 24.5 points. the sooners were pretty much blown out by baylor last week. a fluke? in some quarters it would seem so. sad to say, the cyclones on the other hand are having one of their most forgettable seasons with only one win. over the years you could usually count on them for at least one upset win during the season. that probably isn’t going to happen this year. certainly not this week. that is until i saw the points. call me crazy but i’m taking iowa st to get inside the points. win? probably not.

11-16 georgia @ auburn. auburn favored by 3.5 points. probably a pretty good game. but one where the bulldogs don’t have much of a chance at winning especially on auburn’s home court. although stranger things have happened. yes, another meager spread. no matter. take auburn to win and cover the spread.

11-16 alabama @ mississippi st. alabama favored by 24.5 points. mississippi st played fairly well in losing to the aggies. the tide however is an all together different story. along with this isn’t going to be the week the tide takes a loss. mucho pointoes for sure. take the tide to win and cover the spread. ROLL TIDE!!!

11-16 texas tech @ baylor. baylor favored by 26.5 points. the red raiders bring their 3 game losing streak into dallas for a neutral field thumping by the bears. or do they? yeah, more than likely. however, the red raiders need some sort of redemption for tossing the season overboard. so, ipso facto, texas tech may not win but they will beat the spread. take them.

11-16 stanford @ usc. stanford favored by 3 points. the trojans rolled over lowly cal while the trees pulled off another win over the ducks. i don’t see the trojans scoring anywhere near what they put on the board last week. yeah, the chances of that happening are pretty slim. ok. i’m supposing you’re as shocked as i am with the points for this one. i don’t get it. maybe cajun ed has some sort of hoodoo voodoo spell up his sleeve and the odds mavens found out. i don’t know. sad to say, i’ve got to go with the trees here winning and covering.

11-16 utah @ oregon. no line. it’s utah’s unfortunate luck to travel to oregon after the ducks sad loss to the trees last week. even with the ducks mariota semi banged up the utes will have their hands full and their hats more than likely handed to them by a hopefully pissed off duck squad. the rabid duck fan base should be out for blood as well. have your earplugs handy while watching this one from your couch. autzen just might levitate like the pentagon never did. ah, you had to be there…or at least watching on TV. no line makes this one easy. take the ducks to win. QUACK!!! QUACK!!!

11-16 oregon st @ arizona st. arizona st favored by 13.5 points. the beaves have had two weeks to get ready for this. my guess is mike riley has put that time to good use. the beaves may not win but i’m taking them to get inside the spread.

11-16 wyoming @ boise st. boise st favored by 22 points. the cowboys round out my picks this week with a trip into the fading blue smurf turf of boise st. where the broncos have had two weeks of preparation. the cowboys are in for a wild ride. or that’s my guess. boise needs to win out for another shot at fresno st. good luck with that. plenty of points but the broncos are antsy. and the cowboys can’t break them. take boise st to win and cover.

the season dwindles to only a few remaining weeks. enjoy what’s left of college football 2013. be safe. be semi sane.

on this veterans day say thanks to any vet you know for the sacrifice they made. to all my fellow nam vets, welcome home.

jmh

2013 college football picks and predictions week 11

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before we get started here, the most important thing happening this week is that the brown eyed girl is recovering very nicely in the hospital after what one of her surgeons called,’major life threatening surgery.’ she’s in good hands but things probably won’t be the same around here for a long time. she’s a life long fighter and a good soldier so with, ‘one day at time’, as the mantra we move forward. continued good thoughts and prayers are welcome. thanks.

all things said it was another good week for me with my picks. another almost perfect week with just a couple of glitches. 8 for 10 for the week making my over all a very nice 66 for 100. i was hoping to get back on track and use the odds/points/spreads again this week. however, it doesn’t look like that’s going to be the case once again. there are none this early in the morning on sunday and i’m not sure when i’ll get home today or if i’ll have the energy to deal with them later on. maybe next week.

so, just straight up win or lose once again. no points. pure and simple.

this mess is for entertainment purposes only. why anyone would take what’s bandied about here and use it to place a wager on any game mentioned below gets what they deserve. more than likely abject poverty. do not do it. entertain yourself by setting fire to your cash elsewhere. say like a fire ring down at the beach in here socal if only to piss off the folks living directly to the east of you and just a long wedge shot away. argh. tangents.

as always, these are games i have some interest in watching or in the outcome. they may not be your choices. oh well. they were also picked to appear here over a week ago.

rock ‘n’ roll.

11-7 oklahoma @ baylor. the sooners semi sorta squeaked by the red raiders last week for the win. something they’ve been doing all season so far. not really thumping anyone. just winning. baylor on the other hand is handing their opponents their heads on a plate on a weekly basis. which brings us to the eternal question of ‘the schedule’ and just how important is it? if you’re a baylor fan it doesn’t matter. if you’re anyone else with some sense it matters a lot. kind of like boise st back when they were the one doing the weekly drubbings. seeing as how this is a home court game for the bears it should be close and maybe worth looking at the points. plus, they’ve had two weeks to get ready for this encounter. a close game but oklahoma pulls another win out of their hat. take them.

11-7 oregon @ stanford. my beloved ducks travel to treeland for a PAC(8)(10)12 barn burner. westies say this is the game of the week. hands down. for sure. as a PAC (8)(10)12 homer it couldn’t get much better. so sue me if you live anywhere east of the sierra nevadas. it’s all about north half supremacy here. a close game and the weather might be a factor along with both schools having had 2 weeks to get ready. the ducks start slow but win out. take oregon for the win. QUACK QUACK!!!

11-9 lsu @ alabama. yes, an important game to be sure but nothing like the above game for this guy. and i’ve loved the tide almost as long as the ducks. bear bryant. the tide at one time was the most televised college football program ever. though i have no idea if that’s still true or not. i mean how many of us are left who remember seeing kenny stabler play college ball? exactly. a good game and i hope they put some points on the board this year. bama wins. ROLL TIDE!!!

11-9 virginia tech @ miami(fl). both teams lost on the road this past weekend. a few folks even saw the hokies having trouble taking out boston college. miami took a whipping. who bounces back? i’m taking miami for the win.

11-9 auburn @ tennessee. the volunteers look at times as if they are going to give you big trouble. then for whatever reason they lose steam, gas, or the will to win. or something. auburn may have their hands full winning on tennessee turf. but in the end, auburn wins.

11-9 kansas st @ texas tech. the wildcats coming off two wins and the red raiders coming off two losses. the red raiders right the ship at home this week. take texas tech for the win.

11-9 ucla @ arizona. the bruins had trouble at home with colorado. or at least their defense did. the sun devils had trouble with another lackluster team at home as well. the bruins window of opportunity is getting smaller with each passing week. they need this win in order not to have that window slam shut. take the bruins to win.

11-9 nebraska @ michigan. both teams were handed their proverbial jocks over the weekend. the cornhuskers being more of a surprise than big blue. if big blue finds a way to score some TD’s michigan comes back for the win at home. take michigan.

11-9 byu @ wisconsin. a nice out of the box match up here. another byu scheduling gem. and as a result more than likely a good game to watch. for my money this is a toss up. i’m taking the badgers at home for the win. you should too.

11-9 fresno st @ wyoming. central valley cali rolls on. it’s taken them a few years to get this done but hats off to the coaching staff for doing so. keep it up and maybe we’ll see a PAC(8)(10)(12)13 one day. hands full this week with the up and down cowboys at their by now very chilly home court. if they were more up than down the cowboys would probably be the perfect PAC (8)(10)(12)14 team. why not? colorado is already in the mix. i digress. if derek carr and his cadre of receivers can handle the cold evening in laramie they win. it’s going to be all about the cold this saturday night with a predicted high of 40 for the daylight hours and a low of 30 overnight. the bulldogs will need to prove their mettle and BCS big dance worthiness in the cold. even with two weeks to get ready wyoming can’t keep up with fresno’s heavy hitter offense. take fresno st for the win.

one more week down the college football road. sadly, the end is in sight. enjoy your week and the games. be safe. be semi sane. i’ll be on the road and off to the hills of beverly again soon.

jmh

2013 college football picks and predictions week 10

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week 9 was rather bitter sweet in seeing me go 9 for 10. yes, my best week of the year so far went into making my over all for the year a very nice 58 for 90. all and all stellar stuff. the bitter part being the brown eyed girl and love of my life is seriously ill. so, instead of doing a happy dance all night things have been kinda subdued around these parts.

due to the fact we may have to dash off to the bowels of the hills of beverly in the land of the lotus very soon for a date with her hopefully surgeon savior i’m afraid i’ll be just doing straight up picks again this week. even if that doesn’t happen today or tomorrow or soon my priorities are somewhere else. as is my head. no time, once again, to deal with the odds and points thing. just win or lose. plain and simple. i’d really rather being doing this with the points but i think you understand. however, the show must go on in some form or another and demons must also be soothed. regardless.

you may also want to understand that this weekly journey into college football picking is for entertainment purposes only. the information presented here is not intended to be used as betting advice. legal or otherwise. do not do it. find other ways and outlets to blow your cash and for you to be totally insane and stupid.

i suppose it also bears repeating that the games that appear here are games i have some sort of interest in. either in watching or in the outcome. yes, there might be games of more importance or interest to you. oh well. look elsewhere, pilgrim. early picks again this week.

rock ‘n’ roll.

10-31 arizona st @ washington st. thursday night trick or treat fun. the sun devils did well against the huskies last week at home in the desert southwest. pirate mike has had two weeks to get ready for this home court shoot out. shoot out? it just might be if his passing game is on and the cougars can run some in between. this is the sun devils game to lose. simple as that. i doubt they will with the points they can put on the board even with pirate mike’s two weeks. take arizona st to win.

11-1 usc @ oregon st. friday night sugar high hangover fun. the men of troy had another one of their lack luster performances against utah last saturday. thankfully, they did manage to win in a semi sort of ugly and inefficient way. mike riley’s beaves made a brave showing against the powerhouse trees in losing. cajun ed has his hands full against the beaves on the road this week. is the trojan barrel heading for the falls? we’ll see. an interesting game if both teams show up ready to play. i’m taking oregon st to win.

11-2 tennessee @ missouri. the volunteers beat the ole’ ball coach and s. carolina. the tigers somehow or another lost steam and lost to the same team for their first loss of the year. a sad thing to be sure. the tigers bounce back. take missouri for the win.

11-2 auburn @ arkansas. the razorbacks are on a losing streak not seen since the stones sang about one back in ’65. ok. so that may be a stretch. or is it? a semi sort of rivalry game that may make some sort of difference. or will it? arkansas has fallen upon hard times. take auburn to win.

11-2 ohio st @ purdue. the boilermakers are riding that losing streak as well. the buckeyes are on the 180 degree circuit and running hard for the tattoo/dumb ass redemption deal. another one of those divine intervention things in order for purdue to pull off a win here. although depending on the points there might be some room to work it. i’m taking ohio st to win.

11-2 michigan @ michigan st. the state of michigan bragging rights on the line. along with it being one of the best college games of the year regardless of records going into the showdown. both schools are winning though i guess you could make some sort of point that big blue has had a tougher schedule so far. the pollsters seem to think so. one of them beat the domers and one didn’t. call me ishmael or crazy though you could make a case for either, i’m taking michigan st for the win.

11-2 oklahoma st @ texas tech. sad to say the red raiders were my only loss last week. oklahoma st seems to have shaken off the SI report of NCAA foul play and has come back strong after losing to west virginia earlier. a good game here, kids. and hopefully an old west shoot em up with plenty of offense. the red raiders ease the loss against the other oklahoma with a win at home. take texas tech to win.

11-2 miami(fl) @ florida st. another good game. two top ten schools head to head in a florida rivalry game. miami held off wake forest last week for a sloppy win. probably after too much celebrating after skating by with the ever worthless NCAA suit and tie douche bags and any sort of meaningful penalties for their sins. i could go on but why at this point???? the noles home court. the noles hold the better stats. the noles hold all the cards. take florida st to win.

11-2 utep @ texas a&m. yes, the miners are abysmal this year. yes, johnny boy is back at full speed. why this game? it is a rivalry of sorts and maybe one of note if both schools are playing well. i guess i just miss FX’s ‘the bridge’. sue me. johnny and the aggies roll. take a&m to win.

11-2 nevada @ fresno st. the bulldogs are this year’s boise st. the big time small school BCS buster team. stuff needs to happen in order for fresno to hit the big time for other than being raisin famous. one of said ‘stuffs’ is the fact they need to win out. that shouldn’t be too much of a problem at home against nevada. the other stuff is up to other teams and out of their control. they should control this game. take fresno st to win.

enjoy your weekend and the start of turkey season. be safe. be semi sane. any and all good thoughts, prayers, and sundry other things to the deity of your choice regarding the brown eyed girl would be most welcome on our part. thank you.

jmh

2013 college football picks and predictions week 9

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we all knew this was coming. it had to at some point or another. i was even feeling it as i was writing last weeks picks. week 8 my worst week of the year so far. ouch. a sub par 4 for 10. making my overall a 49 for 80 for the season. still above water but taking some in for sure. most of my picks won but didn’t or couldn’t cover the spread. something the casino’s and betting mavens count on. though i did have a couple of nice underdog wins.

yes, my picks are early for week 9. they will also be just straight up picks with no points due to our having to do an overnighter in jed clampett’s old stomping grounds in order for us to be somewhere early monday morning in said general area. the thought of sitting two to three hours in lala land’s monday morning bumper to bumper traffic is not my idea of fun along with the fact i don’t want to rely on hotel wifi that may or may not work very well. so, just straight up picks for this weeks games. win or lose. no points or spread to deal with. hopefully, things get back to normal for week 10.

the most important thing to remember is that these picks and predictions are for entertainment purposes only. using any of the insanity presented here as gambling advice would be pretty bloody stupid on your part on about a bazillion levels. do not do it. find another outlet for you to throw your cash away.

rock ‘n’ roll.

10-25 boise st @ byu. boise st had a little trouble getting started last week. byu had a little trouble stopping houston from scoring. even with all that this should be a good game with plenty of offense to liven up any fall friday night. i just don’t see boise pulling this one off on the road. i’m taking byu to win.

10-26 texas tech @ oklahoma. another barn burner or that’s the hope. probably another case of who has the ball last wins. this should be a close one regardless. i’m taking the red raiders to win because of their passing game.

10-26 utah @ usc. both teams are all over the map this year. one week surprise surprise and the next WTF? the trojans were disappointing in their lose to the golden domers on the road. a semi sort of sleep walk to no where. the utes pound the trees then make a poor showing against a PAC also ran the next week. cajun ed needs to turn things around yet again this week for the trojans. i like the guy and the kids seem to like him as well as do the ‘daily trojan’ sports writers. he needs to keep winning and garner some sort of crappy bowl game in order to have a real shot at staying where he is next year. the trojans at home get things together for the win. FIGHT ON!!!

10-26 ucla @ oregon. the bruins semi imploded last week in palo alto. way too many penalties along with a deer in the headlights sort of look that never went away. they can’t afford either this week against my beloved ducks. i suppose they never really had a chance at winning this one on the ducks insane home turf. though with a better showing against the trees hope might have sprung eternal. the bruins have a ton of work to do this week if they want to make this a close game. none the less, regardless, take the ducks to win. QUACK QUACK!!!

10-26 s. carolina @ missouri. the gamecocks third week in a row on the road along a tough loss against the volunteers last week. missouri continues to roll and one of my upset winners from last week as well. this is the tigers game to lose. the SEC’s team from out of the blue. take mizz to win.

10-26 penn st @ ohio st. it’s beginning to look like the buckeyes will run the table then head somewhere in late december or early january. penn st is doing ok but unless the wheels fall of the buckeyes wagon they don’t have much of a chance here. take ohio st to win.

10-26 texas @ tcu. if you look at the horned frogs record you’ll see a pattern. one that will more than likely be broken this week as the longhorns have had 2 weeks to get ready for this game. tcu has lost only once at home this year. this game will be their second home court loss along with the pattern ending. take texas to win.

10-26 stanford @ oregon st. the trees try to stay in the race for the roses or more on the road against the beaves. the state of oregon gets to host the two best PAC(8)(10)(12) games of the week. oregon st begins their toughest part of their schedule with this game. ending with the ‘civil war’ game the day after turkey day. but that’s for then. they should make a game of it against the trees this saturday. if i were going by the point spread here i’d take oregon st. however, i’m not so take stanford to win.

10-26 tennessee @ alabama. tennessee surprised at home last week. they do have a fairly good running game but the tide at home won’t be their next victim. too much of everything for the volunteers to handle. the tide rolls again. alabama wins. ROLL TIDE!!!

10-26 clemson @ maryland. clemson got schooled last week by the noles in a pretty much one sided contest. maryland clunks along, at best, against a yawner of a schedule. clemson makes up for the embarrassment of last week with a win on the terps home field.

there they are week 9′s gifts. ok. yeah, sure. at any rate, enjoy the waning few weeks of the college football season. eat and drink well. be safe. be semi sane.

jmh

2013 college football picks and predictions week 8

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another outstanding weekend of college ball saw me polishing off my picks with a nifty 8 for 10 for week 7. my over all now sits at 45 for 70. pretty nifty indeed. had the trees not tanked, which was probably my biggest surprise of the week, and had johnny football managed to eek out a couple more points it would have been a perfect week. well, ok. another shot at a perfect week. something i’ve yet to attain but with any luck at all maybe i’ll hit one this season. maybe this week. the way things are going maybe i will. yes, of course, the dreaded bad juju of the vocalized jinxing of something or another. fine. so be it.

the main thing to remember is this madness driven drivel is for entertainment purposes only. nothing picked up here should be used or even considered for wagering purposes. legal or otherwise. do not do it. find something else to waste your money on. if you’re having trouble doing that hit me up and i’ll help you out with a few ideas. vegas casinos aren’t built because people like to go there to ride around in gondolas and eat foie gras. don’t be stupid.

once again, the points used here may and or probably will either go up or down over the course of the week. or maybe not. the point being, what is here is what i go by to determine my wins and losses for any given week. get the picture? one other thing to point out for this week is that i picked my 10 week 8 games before any of the week 7 games were played. maybe it matters maybe it doesn’t.

rock ‘n’ roll.

10-18 ucf @ louisville. louisville favored by 11 points. ucf has played and beaten several, in general, quality opponents. most notably penn st. plus, they hung tough with s. carolina for their only loss. louisville on the other hand has rolled over everyone they’ve played. however, who have they played? exactly. are they this week’s georgia? we can only hope. take ucf to get inside the spread.

10-19 florida @ missouri. florida favored by 3 points. this one seemed like a pretty good match up when i picked it. i think it still is. the tigers thumped the bull dawgs on their home turf and exposed them for what i’d mentioned a few weeks earlier. i didn’t think they were a top 10 team. the gators were unable to hang with lsu last week in losing. a defensive lapse in the second quarter being the biggest culprit. yes, missouri is everyones out of the blue darling this season. and probably with good reason. take missouri at home to get inside the points and maybe even win.

10-19 washington @ arizona st. arizona st favored by 3 points. with oregon schooling the sark’s huskies last week at home it looks as if they might be done for the year. the fork sticking test will be performed at the conclusion of this weeks game against the sun devils. we’ll also see if their heart is still up for the remainder of the season. so, with all of that mumbo jumbo, i’m taking arizona st to win and cover at home.

10-19 washington st @ oregon. oregon favored by 38 points. pirate mike’s cougars fell way short in their shoot out with the beaves last week. it’s bad luck or scheduling for them as they get to make the trip into the autzen thunder dome for another thrashing by an oregon team this time around. my beloved ducks seem to be on a mission from on high this year. though it would be somewhat premature to go down that road. or maybe we can. no, too early. an aircraft carrier full of points, however take the ducks to win and cover the spread. QUACK QUACK!!!

10-19 oklahoma @ kansas. oklahoma favored by 23.5 points. oklahoma forgot to stop and fill the tank before their meeting with the longhorns last saturday. something you should never do when going against an old established coach who’s seemingly fallen on hard times. hard lessons often come the hard way. as for coaches falling on hard times this could be charlie weis’ time to make his statement or at least save himself from another embarrassing pink slip at the end of the season. a good showing here would go a long way in defering that until another time. like next week perhaps? the sooners gas up before crossing the border into jay hawk territory this week. a barrel of crudes worth of points but take oklahoma to win and cover.

10-19 auburn @ texas a&m. texas a&m favored by 13.5 points. johnny football just might find his hands full this week against the other alabama team. a team that’s doing well and has some good numbers where it counts. auburn will give the aggies defense some fits and plenty of trouble. can johnny boy score enough to make up the difference? probably at home. otherwise a bit shaky point wise for my money. take the aggies to win and cover.

10-19 iowa st @ baylor. baylor favored by 31 points. my regular over the years readers know iowa st is one of my on any given saturday upset favorites. they showed their game last week in losing to the red raiders. baylor can score with impunity against the usual suspects state which for some reason makes the pollsters swoon with pubescent teenage girl awe, lust, and wonder not seen since sinatra, elvis, and the beatles. me? meh. but then i was a rolling stone and a dude. still am. though at times i can channel old blue eyes and stop folks in their tracks when i’m in vegas. i digress. take iowa st to cover the spread and maybe even win it out right.

10-19 usc @ notre dame. notre dame favored by 2.5 points. usc won last week despite almost squandering the game away in the fourth quarter to arizona. we’ll see if they can remain on a winning track this week against a tepid golden domer squad. coach orgeron seems to have the bilge pumps working once again but the true tale of the great white whale comes this week in the shadow of that golden dome. this is one of the all time rivalries, kids. the game either catches the barn on fire or it doesn’t. be that as it may, harken back to the halcyon days of john mckay, john robinson, ara parseghian, lou holtz, dan devine, and coach petey. a stellar group of coaches if there ever was one. can the two current sideline gurus give us what we want? lights out college football? a real nail biter? someone shoving someone over the goal line? a phantom pass interference call? the possibilities are limitless in this kind of rivalry. lets all hope we get some fireworks this saturday on touchdown jesus’ home court. i think cajun ed is up for the challenge. take the trojans to win and or get inside the meager spread. FIGHT ON!!!

10-19 florida st @ clemson. florida st favored by 3 points. florida st has had two weeks to get ready for this crucial game. clemson semi struggled last week against a less than stellar boston college team. team stats are very close. however, the noles are heads above the tigers in scoring and defense. two things that should trump the tigers home court advantage. take florida st to win and cover.

10-19 ucla @ stanford. stanford favored by 5.5 points. the bruins didn’t blow out the bears and the trees never got it together in losing to the middle of the road utes. coach mora has his hands full this week and the next with two back to back valley of death road trips. this week up to palo alto and treeland and the next up into the duck blind. both games road testing the mettle of the bruin squad. the trees seek redemption from the embarrassment of last week. the bruins seek to wreck havoc on the PAC(8)(10)12 north. both of which won’t be easy. i have to stay a PAC south homer. take the bruins to at least get inside the points and maybe even win.

there they are. enjoy your next weekend of the waning college ball season. try to stay semi sane and upright. eat and drink well because it will be over before you know it. in many more ways than you realize. i’m usually fairly confident with my picks but i get a gnawing feeling this week could be one of those the little guy at waterloo or yamamoto at midway type things. look em up, kids. damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead.

jmh

2013 college football picks and predictions week 7

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it took a bit longer than it usually does. a point here. a point there. way too many penalties. perhaps the wrong cleats on a worn out synthetic turf. stuff like that. the list could go on and on. a rather doleful mediocre week 6 is over. one could even say finally over. my worst week of the season so far. yes, it was coming. that was for certain. possibly even worse down the road. count on it. bottom line week 6 saw me going 5 for 10. if i were a baseball player and did that consistently at bat i’d be a hall of famer. and everyone’s top of the charts player. unfortunately i’m not. i’m also pretty sure you aren’t either. so, my over all for the year now stands at 37 for 60. head still above water but on the other hand i’m not looking for an architect or contractor to begin work on my dream home somewhere over looking the blue pacific and the red ferrari is on hold.

the important thing to remember is that this is for entertainment purposes only. using anything here for wagering purposes would be asinine. last weeks picks and predictions pointed that out all too clearly. do not wager on college football games legal or otherwise. do not do it. spend your hard earned cash elsewhere. hell, wasting your hard earned cash elsewhere is an even better idea.

this week is a road warrior road trip week for me. a very much needed solo road trip and i may not have the time or desire to properly deal with the point spreads. so, i’m just doing straight up picks. win or lose. no points. no spread. none the less, don’t use what’s here for some sort of dumb ass purpose.

UPDATE: that was then is now. i’m already down the road and in my room and/or location for the duration of the trip. yeah, i may venture out of the room occasionally. so, the points are back on board for the week. OK? i thought so. :UPDATE

rock ‘n’ roll.

10-10 arizona @ usc. usc favored by 5.5 points. usc’s interim coach ed orgeron is seemingly a breath of fresh coaching air compared to the late and pretty much not lamented ex coach lane kiffin. who in reality had to deal with coach petey and what he had wrought. but lane didn’t deal with it very well. it’s also nice to see ed getting some sort of respect from the odds mavens as well. practices are once again open to the media and ed actually speaks nicely to them and has some fun with them too. he’s having some fun with his players as well, which the kids seem to be enjoying. fresh air is generally a very nice thing. we’ll see how well ed fares in the coming weeks. this week the men of troy face their first opponent after after the shake-up. thankfully, that opponent is the arizona wildcats. along with the game being on the home court the trojans just might turn things around. i’m thinking maybe they will with the high of new coaching blood streaming through the program. especially against the wildcats. or maybe not. at any rate, a nice week night diversion from whatever ails you. possibly a very close game though either team could blow the other out of the park. with usc’s new coach and all the other related incidentals at usc i’m taking them to win and cover the points. why not? FIGHT ON!!!

10-12 alabama @ kentucky. alabama favored by 27.5 points. a bunch of points but the tide continues to roll. nothing really impressive last week but the job got done. and in the end that is pretty much what it’s all about on any given week. kentucky is about ready to go down for the the fourth time with no lifeguards in sight or anywhere near the water. hence, take the tide to win and cover the spread. ROLL TIDE!!!

10-12 florida @ lsu. lsu favored by 8 points. probably a good game if both teams show up to play. lsu was very impressive on the road last week. they should be even more impressive this week at home. take lsu to win and cover the spread.

10-12 texas a&m @ ole miss. texas a&m favored by 7 points. ole miss is coming off of two losses in a row and looming sensitivity and diversity training due to some pretty stupid actions on the part of about half the team. they look like they’re digging themselves a hole. probably a deep hole. a&m has had a couple of weeks to work on this game. plus, johnny boy has been more than likely nose to the grindstone and for sure out of the lame kid limelight. unlike the kids at ole miss. take a&m to win and cover the points.

10-12 stanford @ utah. stanford favored by 8.5 points. last week the trees held off the huskies to stay undefeated. ucla finally squeaked past the utes to stay undefeated as well. utah isn’t burning up the field this season with anything dazzling. but they are keeping things close even when they lose. which they more than likely will do again this week. take the trees to win and cover.

10-12 cal @ ucla. ucla favored by 24.5 points. so far the bruins are for real. cal’s only win this season was against road kill state. i expect them to be hunkered down in the road kill position this week against the bruins at home. take ucla to win and cover the spread.

10-12 oregon @ washington. oregon favored by 14 points. despite a slow start against colorado last week my beloved ducks continue to light up the scoreboard. this is my game of the week for sure. hopefully, the huskies are ready for this match up. the ducks may not blow up the scoreboard for the first time this year but they should win. take oregon to win and cover the points on the road in hostile huskie territory. QUACK QUACK!!!

10-12 oregon st @ washington st. washington st favored by 1 point. a toss up. for my money another good game with two of my other favorite coaches and PAC(8)(10)12 schools going head to head. both teams can score some points. look for a shoot out. defense be damned. the last team with the ball wins. the question being who will that be? i’m taking oregon st to win or at the least get inside the meager points.

10-12 northwestern @ wisconsin. wisconsin favored by 10.5 points. both schools held their own in losing to ohio st. the badgers have had two weeks to get ready for the best BIG (10)12 game of the week. i’m taking wisconsin to win at home and cover the points.

10-12 boise st @ utah st. boise st favored by 7 points. a short road trip sees boise st return after an off week and looking to improve upon their 3-2 record against a pretty good utah st team. just how wisely did coach petersen use that time? we’re all going to find out soon enough. if the broncos fall to 3-3 coach petersen’s stock will more than likely take a nose dive too. no matter how the bronco faithful and apologists spin it or paint it. this game is a toss up. odds mavens or not make this a tough call. flip a coin? i’m taking boise st to win and cover the spread.

each week sees the season along with the days growing shorter. so, put your feet up, sit back, and enjoy the shortest sweetest sporting season in the realm because it will be over before you know it. yeah, i know, like most stuff for us old timer traditionalists stuff ain’t that easy to take anymore. i digress. at any rate, enjoy the games, some good company, food, and vino. be safe. be semi sane.

jmh

2013 college football picks and predictions week 6

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this past saturday was one of those nifty game days for me. a very sweet 9 for 10 day with my picks against the spread. had oklahoma st not floundered it would have been a perfect day. maybe their booster/alumni created drama at home is beginning to filter out onto the field. we’ll wait and see what happens. at any rate, my over all for the year now stands at, 32 for 50.

week 5 also saw some injuries to key players through out college ball. for me, the two biggest were usc’s marqise lee and my beloved ducks lost running back de’anthony thomas. it remains to be seen just how serious both injuries are. in lee’s case he is usc’s offense.

as for usc’s AD pat haden standing behind coach lane kiffin that all came to an abrupt if not predictable end early sunday morning after the trojans got hammered by arizona st. the fan splashing merde was getting out of hand. good for haden. time to move on. a number of decent coaches are supposedly in the mix for the job. if it were up to me i’d go with an interim coach then after this miserable season is over go for the coach you really want. which is just what they’ve done. hopefully, the interim coach is just that, interim. former trojan and current broncos defensive coordinator jack del rio seems to be getting the most buzz at the moment.

always remember this weekly insanity is for entertainment purposes only. just because i’m doing fairly well so far this year doesn’t mean anything at all. my picks could veer into on coming traffic on any given saturday. or hit a patch of black ice and spin out of control. get the picture? i hope you do. never use what you read here for wagering purposes. do not do it. there are much better ways to spend or waste your cash than betting on college football.

the point spreads used here may go up or down over the week. that being said, i have better things to do than adjusting the points here whenever the odds bosses make a change. my win loss record for the week is based on what is here.

as far as i’m concerned, week 6 is another really poor slate of games. of course, there are some good games but most of them aren’t worth your time. or more importantly mine. so, you’re going to see some teams here you normally would never see or rarely see.

rock ‘n’ roll.

10-1 ucla @ utah. ucla favored by 3.5 points. the bruins travel to provo for a critical PAC (8)(10)12 southern division game. the utes aren’t terrible but they aren’t great either. all in all possibly a tight game or the bruins could blow them out. the early point spread is meager at best for the bruins. probably just as well. take the bruins to cover and win.

10-5 clemson @ syracuse. clemson favored by 13 points. clemson has been on a roll so far this year. should ohio st, oregon, stanford, or alabama tank, guess what? yup. they just need to keep winning. though i’d rather not see a rematch against georgia for the big dance game. i lost my zest for rematches back in muhammed ali’s boxing days. i digress. clemson should have no trouble taking this game to the bank. take clemson to win and cover.

10-5 maryland @ florida st. florida st favored by 14.5 points. despite maryland’s 4-0 record, which the points reflect, this a game the seminoles can’t let slip through their fingers. especially a home court game. take florida st to win and cover.

10-5 n. carolina st @ wake forest. n. carolina st favored by 9.5 points. n. carolina st held their own in a loss against clemson. wake forest didn’t. another one of those ipso facto deals in a game that only matters to the schools, players, and their families. take nc state to win and cover.

10-5 kentucky @ s. carolina. s. carolina favored by favored by 22 points. kentucky is not playing very well. the old ball coach and his gamecocks are doing just fine so far with only one slip up. this is another game the home team can’t muddle through while hoping for the best. take s. carolina to win and cover.

10-5 cincinnati @ south florida. cinncinnati favored by 12 points. possibly the yawner of the week. or maybe the gamecocks game is. south florida sits at 0-4 and is looking straight at 0-5 if the bearcats make to the stadium in time for kickoff. if not, south florida gets the forfeit win. although the chances of that happening are pretty slim. take cincy to win and cover the points.

10-5 missouri @ vanderbilt. vanderbilt favored by 2 points. oh??? any sane person would take missouri in this game. you should too. take missouri to win and or get inside the points.

10-5 notre dame @ arizona st. arizona st favored by 5.5 points. i guess the domers are lucky this one is being played indoors at texas stadium with the a/c pumping at full steam rather than outside at tempe. i’m also guessing this is one of those made for prime time TV venues which under normal real world circumstances would never otherwise happen. fine. the sun devils win and cover the spread, take them.

10-5 ohio st @ northwestern. ohio st favored by 5 points. a vaguely interesting game. the buckeyes have run the table so far but their first real game was last week against wisconsin. northwestern is in the same position but hasn’t played anyone of note so far this season. if there were a few more points on the odds board i’d take northwestern. however, there isn’t. so, take the buckeyes to win and cover.

10-5 washington @ stanford. stanford favored by 6.5 points. the thinning of the PAC(8)(10)12 northern division herd begins in earnest on the trees home court this saturday night. more than likely a pretty good game and one the east coasters may want to stay up and watch. but probably not since they’re more biased than i am. what’s up with that? the huskies will make a game of it but take the trees to win and cover.

the first weekend of fine october light. possibly my favorite month of the year just because of said light. at any rate, enjoy your week of college ball and try to remain semi sane and upright. just remember to eat every once in a while. it does help. or so goes the theory. we’re half way through the season. where does the time go? sigh.

jmh

2013 college football picks and predictions week 5

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after week 4 the train remains on the tracks and seems to be steaming right along with another 6 for 10 week. my over all now sits at a respectable 23 for 40. thankfully, i haven’t had a week of total misery as yet. though i’m sure at least one or two of those are lurking about somewhere. let’s hope this week doesn’t prove to be one of them. had the golden domers, usc, and big blue bothered to score some more points last week would have been one for the record books. sadly, that wasn’t the case. perhaps this week if the train keeps a rollin’. all that being said, just remember this is for entertainment purposes only.

as usual the odds/points used here are what i use to figure my wins and losses for the week. the points may change over the course of the week, up or down. it doesn’t matter. what’s here is here. also, what’s here isn’t meant for you to wander off into the land of the stupid to use for wagering purposes. that would be totally lame and insane on your part. do not do it.

i’m keeping my editorial comments to the picks and predictions section this week, which were somewhat easier to come up with than week 4. unlike week 4 this weeks games are, in my mind, a pretty good slate of games. maybe not for you but, hey, who’s writing this stuff?

rock ‘n’ roll.

9-28 stanford @ washington st. stanford favored by 11 points. pirate mike leach, the cougars head coach, has seemingly turned state around and all of the mindless or not so mindless chatter has gone away for the time being. maybe even allowing him to keep his current position. well, unless he unexpectedly runs into the idaho coach while he’s out and about. a digression. as of now he deserves a big: atta boy mike. get some. the trees continue their PAC 12 co-supremacy with another win last week. i’m thinking coach harbaugh is already wishing the trees off week had come later in the season. but that’s for a few weeks down the road. take stanford to win and cover.

9-28 usc @ arizona st. arizona st favored by 7 points. once again the trojan’s offense was in the game for a bit then left to ogle the cheer leaders and grab a hot dog. or score some crack or crank or some damn thing or another and they never really got back into the game. despite the fact of utah states total implosion and new found industry of making dumb ass penalties appear out of thin air the men of troy labored for the win. then could not find a way to cover the points. yet again. sigh. trojan faithful cringe inwardly and outwardly. lack of a full stadium saturday is testimony to that. the sun devils on the other hand, didn’t live up to their under the radar PAC 12 south hype in their loss to the trees. it wasn’t even close. TV talking heads are still blathering on about how pat haden is behind his coach, lane ‘has the train left the station?’ kiffin. a good game here kids. even with all the associated baggage. and the fact marqise lee is probably sorry he didn’t turn pro when he had the chance. he’s pretty much the only offense the trojan’s have. i’m taking arizona st to win and cover. yeah, sad ain’t it?

9-28 oklahoma st @ w. virginia. oklahoma st favored by 20.5 points. my first look at the cowboys for the year who seem to be oblivious to the huge scandal that’s taken hold in stillwater over the years. still water may run deep but so does impropriety. yeah, pretty much all of them do it but the cowboys are this year’s poster child for the dumb ass alumni/booster society stupidity award. however, fear not, the NCAA loons will more than likely either overlook the infractions because hey, wink wink, they ALL do it. which seems like the ever insipid NCAA already have since the SI article claims the morons in oklahoma have been at it for some time. or they’ll impose a johnny football type penalty. that is of course unless you happen to be usc then everything matters. and you end up with lane kiffin as your punishment. we live in strange times to say the least. i digress. the cowboys have been playing lights out ball. the mountaineers so so ball. so far w. virginia’s highlight of the year is being only a 9 point loss to the sooners. take the cowboys to win and cover.

9-28 lsu @ georgia. georgia favored by 3 points. a good, let’s watch this game. this is the tigers game to lose. it’s as simple as that. georgia has a good team but a top 10 team? please. with only the home court 3 for the bulldogs i’m taking lsu to win or cover.

9-28 oklahoma @ notre dame. oklahoma favored by 3.5 points. the domers have their hands full this saturday. lucky for them it’s another home court advantage in the shadow of the golden dome. although they aren’t seeing much points wise. yes, touchdown jesus faithful the sooners are only 3 point faves. your point? mine would be, take the sooners to win and cover the meager spread.

9-28 ole miss @ alabama. alabama favored by 16.5 points. another one to watch. ole miss may surprise. but more than likely not enough. take the tide to win and cover. ROLL TIDE!!

9-28 texas a&m @ arkansas. texas a&m favored by 3 points. the razorbacks are playing ok. johnny boy football is doing ok as well. hyper heisman hype hangs heavy. and it is, after all, football season and he’s not being left to his own devices and or whims for the most part. a good thing to be sure in johnny’s case. the aggies are only favored by 3? i’m thinking it’s a trojan horse being dealt out by the odds mavens. i’m not falling for it. you shouldn’t either. take a&m to win and cover.

9-28 wisconsin @ ohio st. ohio st favored by 7.5 points. leaders division supremacy on the line here. leaders division? what’s he talking about anyway? uh, the Big (10) 12 or something. i thought they were going to ‘fix’ the divisional nomenclature thingy problem. apparently not. the badgers get a shot at tripping up the buckeyes at home. not an easy thing. the buckeyes do have a bit of a depth problem so, ipso facto, i’m taking the badgers to at least cover or maybe even win.

9-28 s. mississippi @ boise st. boise st favored by 26.5 points. boise st has fallen on hard times. well, at least for them. what happened to all of the boise can reload talk after k. moore moves on with no problem? exactly. one good thing to come out of it all is the fact they are at least doing OK with the point spread thing. something that even in the old moore days they couldn’t do. southern miss is not doing well. a semi long road trip up to the smurf turf for them. hats off to the broncos for making some sort of attempt at scheduling what appeared to be a good out of conference call at the time. unless things go terribly wrong on the worn out smurf turf the broncos win and cover. take boise st.

9-29 cal @ oregon. oregon favored by 36.5 points. the ever hapless bears travel to the autzen stadium zoo to get their whipping of the week. yes, of course, on any given saturday. but, hey come on, we’re talking cal here. and we’re also talking the ducks at home. get the picture? take oregon to win and cover the points. QUACK QUACK!!!

just about half way through the season. amazing. time has never waited for anyone and this time of year only brings that into a rather stark shatteringly clear focus. enjoy the games. eat well. last weekend we took a breather and went out for some mexican. guac, tequila, and cerveza respectively. ole!! try to stay sane and semi upright. see you week 6.

jmh

2013 college football picks and predictions week 4

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there were a collection of good games for week 3 which saw me going 7 for 10. my best week of the season so far. not saying much but it was what it was. that’s usually the case when the games are decided straight up win or lose and no points. those large casinos built out in the desert cost quite a bit of coin and they aren’t built by you winning. at any rate, my over all now stands at 17 for 30. a nice up tick in the numbers.

ucla proved to be worthy of the PAC 12 south title talk with a nice win over nebraska. arizona st also gets a nod with their strange win over wisconsin. winning doesn’t have to be pretty it just needs to get done with or without the officials help. alabama, at times, wasn’t pretty but the job got done. if there’s no let down they could run the table. we’ll wait and see. johnny football played very well but his 2 interceptions were the game changing difference. plus, a j mccarron out played him on the other side of the ball.

week 3 also saw strange or not so strange tales of all manner of NCAA violations at oklahoma st. I imagine it will take the, way past its state of usefulness, NCAA years to come to any conclusions if at all concerning the cowboys. as of this writing we’re still waiting for the miami (florida) decision. i hope you haven’t been holding your breath. don’t start now..

ok. week 4. i had a hard time finding my 10 games even though the exhibition season seems to be over for now at least. not that many exciting math-ups even with league play beginning for most of the schools. just remember this is for entertainment purposes only. taking or using anything here and placing a legal or illegal wager on any of the games would be totally irresponsible and insane. do not do it.

i’m back to using the points again this week after taking last week off so i could hang out in las vegas and not have to work much while i was there. yes, believe it or not this is work. the points may change over the week but i use what’s here to determine my wins and losses.

rock ‘n’ roll.

9-20 boise st @ fresno st. fresno st favored by 4.5 points. boise has been playing better since their first week loss to the huskies. yes, of course, last week’s first half against air force wasn’t very pretty. which seems to be the running theme so far this week. fresno sat out last week due to the floods in colorado. it’s hard to say what the unexpected lay off did to the team. interesting in that the bulldogs are favored. something that doesn’t happen if at all for boise st. boise looks like they’ve righted the ship so i’m taking them to at the least get inside the points and probably win.

9-21 utah st @ usc. usc favored by 7 points. the trojans seem to have worked out their offensive problems last week. yes, it was against boston college and you could even say utah st is in the same league. things should remain the same this week for the men of troy but could go south next week against the sun devils. but that’s next week. the fire lane kiffin band wagon has some what slowed if only for the time being.
things will almost be fall like here in lotus land this coming saturday. a good day for football but also one for staying off the roads with ucla playing at home as well. ok. once again PAC(8)(10)(12) socal homer says take the trojans to win and cover. if they don’t win expect the boo birds to be back even louder than before. FIGHT ON!!!

9-21 michigan st @ notre dame. notre dame favored by 7 points. michigan states first real test of the season. though in some circles south florida might be considered one. the domers shouldn’t have much of a problem at home with the spartans. or that’s the hope from where i’m sitting. take touchdown jesus to win and cover the spread.

9-21 smu @ texas a&m. texas a&m favored by 28.5 points. june jones can’t seem to get the mustangs rolling since taking the reins (pun intended) at smu. which is too bad because like i’ve said before i think he’s a good coach. a bunch of points but the aggies are probably up for it. johnny football in particular. especially with the aggies only playing 4 road games this year. they caught a break with that and a semi lackadaisical schedule as well. yes, ok. to the point. a&m wins and covers the points.

9-21 arizona st @ stanford. stanford favored by 8 points. if arizona st is going to contend for the PAC south title this is their week to kick start the run. the trees on the other hand have been in the exhibition season mode so far against schools they probably shouldn’t be playing. the sun devils make a game of it but the trees prevail. which could be why they are only 8 point faves. or the sun devils are really that good. one to watch. take the trees to win and cover.

9-21 auburn @ lsu. lsu favored by 16.5 points. if it were being played in alabama things might go a bit differently. or maybe not. tigers vs tigers. take lsu to win.

9-21 utah @ byu. byu favored by 7 points. more state of utah bragging rights on the line. the utes almost beat the beaves last week in a nail biter. the cougars thumped the longhorns into some sort of bizzaro through the looking glass world and they’ve had a couple of weeks to relish in the glory of doing so. all in all one of the few really interesting match-ups of the week. well, for me anyway. the utes could stun but i’m going with the cougars to win and cover.

9-21 wyoming @ air force. wyoming favored by 3 points. it’s beginning to look like one of those years where the cowboys have some game and can put more than a few points on the board. air force can usually score points but this year the defense isn’t helping out very much. another home court for the falcons. i don’t think it will matter much in the end. take the cowboys to win and cover the meager points.

9-21 michigan @ connecticut. michigan favored by 17.5 points. for whatever reasons big blue is still in the top 25. i guess beating the golden domers helped. other than that it’s been a yawner for them. ok. i guess more so for me. uconn began the season with losses against a couple of junior high flag football teams. oh right, one of the teams was maryland. as i was saying… michigan should win and cover thus staying in the top 25 for another week. imagine that. in other words take michigan to win and cover.

9-21 new mexico st @ ucla. ucla favored by 42 points. i was going to pick the bama colorado game but with the flooding situation in colorado it’s hard to say if that game is going to happen or not this early in the week. so, with the fact it was hard coming up with my 10 games to begin with it was even harder to find a replacement game. yeah, this is what i came up with. sue me. hopefully, this is the only time the bruins ever play the aggies. plenty of points for the bruins to cover. oh well, take the bruins to win and cover the spread.

another week in the books with summer fading fast. fine by me. i’m fed up with the a/c running 24/7 in these parts. enjoy your weekend of games. be safe and semi sane. toss something on the barbie or do what i did. toss some tortellini into boiling water. toss with butter and parmesan when they’re done and enjoy with a nice caprase salad, good bread, and some dago red. cheers!

jmh

2013 college football picks and predictions week 3

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what can you say about statistics? probably any number of things. some good some bad. i guess the big thing being they are usually fairly accurate. right? after going 6 for 10 my first week and winning 4 of my first 5 games on saturday i tanked and lost my last 5. in doing so i finished saturday with a 4 for 10 record. bringing my early season total to 10 for 20. just a tad under my past statistical average for the entire year. see what i mean? eh, probably not.

there were some pretty interesting outcomes. the two most notable being byu putting the hurt on the longhorns and washington st beating the trojans. those 2 i didn’t expect. the rest of my losses were point spread blunders by favorite teams that shouldn’t have happened. which proves my point that you shouldn’t use anything here for legal or illegal college football wagering. do not do it. this is for entertainment purposes only.

ok. i suppose it’s time for the lets all get on the fire lane kiffin bandwagon once again. the boos of saturday night are still echoing across downtown lotus land and are spreading throughout the suburbs far and wide like a plague of locusts intent on feeding on the hearts of the trojan faithful. all said and done, i’m a bit surprised it’s happening this early in the season. you can find at least one web site dedicated to the firing, on of all places the web. though visiting any of the sites isn’t for the faint of heart or those lacking the odd/weird humor gene. i’m just wondering if pat haden isn’t one of the posters. my money is on he’s posting as, ‘the brain zipper’. hmmm. that’s a joke, kids. don’t get any bright ideas.

this week the brown eyed girl and i are ensconced at our favorite hotel on the las vegas strip. we’ve been here since yesterday. so, i’m not using point spreads to pick my winners. just straight up win/loss picks for this week. yeah kind of odd, no pun intended, not using the points when you’re actually in sin city but we’re here for fun. not me sitting around dealing with the odds deal for this nonsense. things should be back to normal next week. one point to make here is that i picked these games over a week ago. this vegas trip was more or less a spur of the moment deal made on last thursday. the games were not picked with the lack of future point spreads in mind. for better or worse, they are my usual games i have some sort of interest in watching or the outcome.

to recap. no points, just win or lose this week. the most important thing being, this is for entertainment purposes only. anyone who uses this insanity for betting or wagering will get what they deserve. do not do it. ok sure. later this morning i suppose i’ll be checking out what the casino is offering downstairs point wise for the college weekend. um, that would be for gathering information and educational purposes only. capice? in truth, we’re here for the 5 star dining that vegas has to offer. trust me, it’s stellar. my wife thinks it’s funny that i’ll drive to vegas to eat but won’t drive into L.A. for the same thing. for me, it’s all about driving home after eating and drinking too much and the totally crappy 24/7 L.A. traffic. cab fares to and from the L.A. central hinterlands and our berg would be thru the roof. plus, the scenery driving out here is pretty cool if you enjoy the desert. along with it being pretty much a straight shot drive.

rock ‘n’ roll.

9-12 tcu @ texas tech. close game here. maybe really close. i’m going to take tcu for the win.

9-13 air force @ boise st. boise st comes back into the fray at home on the smurf turf. hopefully, the tinkering of the offense that’s worked for a number of years has hit the ash heap of foolish follies. if not the falcons have a shot at winning. however, take boise to win.

9-14 ucla @ nebraska. the bruins take off to omaha with an extra week of practice under their collective belts. you can be sure coach mora used the time wisely. or that’s the hope. PAC(8)(10)(12) homer says take the bruins to win. this might be their year, well until they play the ducks on october 26th up in oregon. then things may change. the bruins win this week.

9-14 alabama @ texas a&m. the game most of us have been waiting for and the game of the year so far. the tide vs johnny football. i imagine this one will be the ratings winner for the weekend. for sure the aggies toughest game of the season. as for the crimson tide, probably not so much. it will very interesting to see how they handle johnny “i’ll sign for a dime” football. bama wins on the aggies home turf. take em. ROLL TIDE!!

9-14 tennessee @ oregon. the ducks at home are even more amazing than on the road. to semi sort of paraphrase an old 60′s-70′s wheeze, speed kills. speed kills just about any sort of defense you’ve got going. take the ducks to win. QUACK QUACK!!!

9-14 iowa @ iowa st. all in all generally a good game every year with either team capable of winning regardless how good or bad they are. this year is no different. i’m taking iowa st at home for the eye-oh-way state bragging rights rivalry win.

9-14 ohio st @ california. the buckeyes haven’t been out here to the left coast during the regular season for many moons. for some reason in my minds eye i can see woody hayes prowling the sidelines this saturday. or maybe up on strawberry hill with binoculars and a tub of colonel sanders. at any rate, cal is pretty dismal already this year. their semi poor showing against portland st last week being the point. if the buckeyes don’t get too cocky and woody stays off the field while keeping his hands to himself ohio st should win. take them.

9-14 utep @ new mexico st. this game was picked with a nod to the FX TV show ‘the bridge’, and the el paso – juarez thing. a very good show with at least one episode left for the year. check it out this week. good stuff. as for the game, a major paragon time shift of epic proportions involving little green men holding seed money from the bahamas would be in order for new mexico st to win this one. yes, of course, stranger things have happened. none the less, i’m taking utep to win.

9-14 oregon st @ utah. the beaves are having a bit of trouble so far. perhaps a rebuilding year?? they should have taken better care of hawaii but then usc couldn’t either. so, i’m taking utah at home for the win.

9-14 wisconsin @ arizona st. a good match-up to cap off the weekend. two good squads heating up the already steamy desert southwest. both teams have thumped walk-over state teams. wisconsin has done it twice. the sun devils have had the extra week to get ready for the home court sweltering and possibly monsoon like late summer weather. the sun devils will also give the bruins a run for the PAC south title. i’m taking arizona st for the win.

there ya go kids. have a great weekend. get creative food wise. have a few cold ones. try to stay upright and more importantly semi sane.and while doing so, enjoy week 3 of college football because the season is so short it’s gone in the wink of an eye.

jmh

2013 college football picks and predictions week 2

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do you remember the AAU? you’d have to be pretty close to my age to do so or be a real sports trivia nerd. the AAU, (the) amateur athletic union, passed on a number of years ago due to being insipid, useless, and corrupt. sort of like the NCAA these days which took over for the AAU morons when their usefulness became a running joke. well, kids, the joke is on us once again. this time around it’s just another bunch of soulless suits pretending to be something they aren’t, a legitimate trustworthy amateur sporting entity. yes, the NCAA has hit rock bottom or at least is heading that way in what can only be called a full tilt boogie nose dive to oblivion. a shameful load of hacks, grifters, assorted loons and goons, wearing suits and ties pandering to stupidity in a manner that can only be said to be more asinine than the u.s. congress. i semi digress.

yes, johnny football skated on the sidelines on some pretty thin or thick ice, depending on your perspective, for a half this past saturday. some wags even say with a smile on his face as he skated blissfully away counting coins of the realm in his inflated autograph signing head. if you think the kid is or was innocent then you aren’t paying attention or reading enough. it’s time for the NCAA to head off into the sunset like it’s predecessor, the AAU, did years ago. yes, he did have a good game once he came in against a tepid rice squad that hasn’t been any good since i was a kid and the AAU was still around. yes, a decent enough game for johnny football. however, his douche bag quotient continues to climb ever upward.

ok. the first week is in the books. i went 6 for 10 even surprising myself. a very good start indeed. lets hope things stay that way for week 2. my astute readers will realize there’s still one game left out of my 10 picks which will be played tonight. if i lose it i’ll adjust things next week but i’m thinking that won’t be necessary. the noles rolled so i stay at 6 for 10.

week 2 offers, for me, about the same amount of watchable games as the first week did. the playing of the sisters of the poor and their ilk slogs on unabated. a sad thing indeed. i repeat myself. which i’ll continue to do until someone listens, takes heed, and/or stops the madness. just say no. please. boy howdy. yeah, we went 12 and oh. we deserve a shot at a big dance game. show ’nuff. what you deserve is a slap up the side of your head for playing 2 or 3 games against tiddly winks state, assault & battery poly technic, and the university of beer pong & pizza. wags say this practice will end next year once the BCS mess fades away and the new mess takes over. i won’t be holding my breath.

always remember this is for entertainment purposes only. the only other purpose this insanity serves is to somewhat cool my fevered brow. taking anything here and using it to waste your hard earned cash on a college football game would be stupid. do not do it. you don’t want to look like the NCAA now do you? i didn’t think so.

the points, spreads, odds listed here are what i go by. they may change over the week. no matter to me. these are what i go by in determining my wins and losses for the week. with the holiday weekend the odds are a bit slow coming out from pretty much everywhere. i’m back to my old source which is scant at best.

rock ‘n’ roll.

9-7 florida @ miami(fl). florida favored by 3 points. both teams are coming off wins against the usual week 1 suspect teams. this will probably be a pretty good game and a toss up. i like the gators. take them to win and cover.

9-7 oregon @ virginia. oregon favored by 23.5 points. the ducks rolled over road kill state last week at home. virginia did beat favored byu squad but that’s not happening this week. take the ducks to win and cover. QUACK!! QUACK!!

9-7 utah st @ air force. utah st favored by 10.5 points. despite the aggies losing to utah and the falcons beating an east coast brainiac school the previous week this should still be a good game. and maybe even a close one. or maybe not. take utah st to win and cover the spread.

9-7 san diego st @ ohio st. ohio st favored by 29 points. san diego got thumped at home by a no name school last week. their defense apparently passed away at some point during the second quarter. ohio st won but not spectacularly against someone they should have steamrolled. a boat load of points but ohio st should win and cover the spread.

9-7 s. carolina @ georgia. georgia favored by 3 points. maybe one of the best games of the weekend kids. take georgia to win and cover at home.

9-7 texas @ byu texas favored by 7 points. texas rolled and byu should have won. the cougars will get inside the points spread this week. take them.

9-7 notre dame @ michigan. michigan favored by 3 points. both teams hammered week 1 patsies. i like big blue at home. take michigan and the home court 3 to win.

9-7 hawaii @ oregon st. oregon st favored by 27 points. oregon st got surprised by a school that should have been no surprise at all. a sad thing to be sure. we’ll see if coach riley will turn things around this week. if he doesn’t it’s going to be a very long disappointing season for the beavers. the beavers should cover and win this week. or that’s the hope. the beavers can put points on the board. take oregon st to win and cover.

9-7 washington st @ usc. usc favored by 15.5 points. washington st held their own in a loss last week against auburn. usc failed to cover the spread with their weak offense. the trojan defense carried them to victory. that will probably be the case here as well. the question being, how long can usc’s defense keep it up? they had a similar dilemma last year with the defense not showing up and things went off the rails around the midpoint of the season. deja vu all over again? time tells. one point to remember, pat haden did not hire lane kiffen. ‘howling mad’ mike garrett gets the blame for doing that sad deed. ok. another saturday scorcher here in lotus land. though the game starts around sunset. not as many points as last week. maybe the offense will show up to play. bite the bullet and take the trojans to win and cover. FIGHT ON!!

9-7 san jose st @ stanford. stanford favored by 24.5 points. our first look at the trees for the year. most folks have them penciled in for the big dance game. we’ll have to wait and see about that. san jose st steps up into the big time spotlight here in a game that has a crosstown rival feel to it. probably because basically that’s what it is. we’ll see if the spartans are up for it. ah, probably not. take stanford to win and cover the points.

enjoy your weekend and try your best at staying sane and upright. toss some protein on the bbq. i have to admit i didn’t do that last week. a frittata got made instead. it seemed like the italian thing to do. it was outstanding by the way. have some dago red and kick back. that i did do. be safe.

jmh

Written by john hauge

September 2, 2013 at 3:48 am

2013 college football picks and predictions week 1

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week 1 of the college football season is finally, at last, rolling into town.  yours too if you’re paying attention. it’s been a long dry haul since the insipidness of the bowling season 8 or so months ago. lots of stuff has gone down since then.  first off, johnny football has proven to be a lame kid just like all the rest of the lame kids out there.  ok, so a rich lame kid. there really isn’t much difference.  rich poor no matter.  lameness crosses bank accounts with impunity.  i’m sure johnny boy will have a decent if not fine year at the a & m helm.  that is unless he gets hurt.  i would never wish that on anybody.  well, sure, ok. i can think of a few folks wandering the planet but trust me he ain’t one of them.  a & m has a pretty much lackluster schedule this year.  so, i’m assuming johnny won’t be in the heisman hunt down the road even if he plays lights out ball. though stranger things have been known to happen.  15 to 1 odds on a repeat trophy for him.  the big question about johnny is what will become of him when he turns pro??  peter king has questions and doubts.  me too. i figure he’ll probably end up like vince young.  bouncing around.  or maybe even joey harrington.  duck fans far and wide remember him. however, no one else does.  or maybe he’ll end up being another, god forbid, todd marinovich.  oofa, though todd seems to have turned things around life wise.  we wait and see.  good luck johnny football.  life is hard then everyone starts gunning for you. particularly gunning for you if you’ve had a few autograph sessions for pay.  of course, as of this writing, that hasn’t been proven by the ineffective NCAA and probably won’t ever be.  but one never knows.   
 
let’s see what else…ah, visor head kelly of the ducks is now in the nfl running things in philly.  league refs are already saying his quick draw mcgraw college offense won’t happen in their sandbox if they have any say in the matter.  poor guy should have probably stayed put in eugene.
 
then there’s lane kiffin of usc.  his boss, pat haden, says he stands behind him.  if i were pat i’d stay way behind him and off to the side a bit. because when the merde hits the fan, merde flies like the wind and hits stuff far and wide.  i like pat but he has no real choice in the matter.  he has to say nice things about lane until said merde begins to clog things up as it bounces around landing on stuff.  which may or may not take long to happen.  we wait and see.
 
also, the all knowing and semi forthright NCAA has decided to stop making money off of it’s football players.  no more selling brick-a-brack with players names on them.  a sound move on their part.  although it took the looming specter of court appearances to make them quit the practice.  i guess they aren’t as dumb as they seem.        
 
the usual rule changes have come down the pike over the lay off but we’ll hear way to much about them this weekend.  so i’ll leave the new rules and the endless blathering about them to the ever mindless talking TV heads.   we also have more of the usual let’s all play underwater basket weaving poly tech the first few weeks of the season.  hey, we’ll all win except for those of us who don’t.  yeah, that’s one college ball tidbit i’d love to see bite the dust.  though it probably won’t happen in my lifetime.  or yours either.  great grand kids as well. 
 
for my new readers, i pick 10 games every week.  games i care about or more to the point have some sort of interest in the outcome and or   watching the game on the tube.  i use vegas point spreads to pick my winners. usually the first spreads that come out for the current week.  if they change before game time i don’t care.  however, there are some weeks when i don’t use the spread due to life stuff.  that usually happens at least once or twice a season.  so, count on it at some point or another.  at any rate, over the years i’ve managed to stay just over 51% with my picks against the spread.  not spectacular but my head is above water.  hopefully, things stay that way this season.  
 
the important thing to remember is this insane drivel is for entertainment purposes only.  got it?  using anything gleaned here for sport betting purposes with anyone legal or illegal would be of the highest form of stupidity.  do not do it.  you have much more important things to do with your cash. sports betting is for chumps or pete rose.  though ol’ pete is getting the shaft at this point.  i digress.    
 
ok.  i think that pretty much covers things.  although i’m usually sorry i do the odds/spread deal the first few weeks of the season as things are generally not what they seem this early in the year.  my usual place for finding my spreads is being slow on the trigger this year.  the odds posted below are strictly vegas casino odds that came out on august 6 and i’ve done my usual averaging thing.  after checking again this morning the lines seem to be trending up for the most part.  though some of the games have disappeared.  odd.  no pun intended.  remember, my insanity is for entertainment purposes only.  let’s do this.
 
rock ‘n’ roll.  
 
8-29  usc @ hawaii.  usc favored by 22.5 points.  the men of troy had a fairly easy time with the warriors last year.  they might again this time around too.  though maybe norm chow is getting a handle on the job which will mean a tighter game.  we’ll have to wait and see.  though i doubt lane will begin the merde splashing this early in the season.  lots of points and the distractions of oahu thrown in for good measure and no starting QB at the end of camp for the trojans. this is probably a bad move but take usc to win and cover.  FIGHT ON!! 
 
8-31  boise st @ washington.  washington favored by 3.5 points.  a good game here kids.  lots riding on the line.  both schools need the win. boise st needs to run the table for any shot at some sort of last of the mohicans big dance BCS game.  the huskies need the win to jump start coach sarkasian’s handle on next year.  otherwise sark’s days might be numbered in washington.  the huskies get the home court 3 and that’s it.  boise usually wins their first outing.  take boise st to win or at least cover the meager spread. 
 
8-31  nevada @ ucla.  ucla favored by 20 points.  the bruins are the pre-season favorite to win the PAC (8) (10) 12 south.  they need to drop the year into drive and punch it against a decent wolf pack squad.  probably a scorcher of a day in pasadena.  who can handle the heat and who wants it more?  more points.  probably more than an opening day accounts for.  another bite the bullet.  take ucla to win and cover.
 
8-31  lsu @ tcu(at arlington, tx). lsu favored by 4 points.  what can you say?  other than the fact tcu needs this one big time.  an early season statement as it were.  another good game even if it isn’t being played on anyone’s home court.  i’m taking tcu to at least get inside the points. take them. 
 
8-31  georgia @ clemson.  georgia favored by 1 point.  if clemson wants to unseat the tide they need to start here.  do they even have what it takes?  we’ll see come the fourth quarter.  pretty much a toss up against a sleeping giant georgia squad.  who’s going places?  georgia or clemson?  take clemson to win.  
 
8-31  mississippi st @ oklahoma st. oklahoma st favored by 13 points.  the cowboys may or may not pull this one out.  miss st can be tough early in the year.  none the less, take the cowboys to win and cover.  
 
8-31  byu @ virginia.  byu favored by 3 points.  another tight game.  i’m taking byu to win and cover. 
 
8-31  northwestern @ cal.  northwestern favored by 6 points.  northwestern is coming off a good year last time around.  cal was their sad usual.  take northwestern to win and cover.
 
8-31  virginia tech @ alabama.  alabama favored by 19 points.  if this game was up in old virginny the oompahs just might have had a chance.
i have no idea where the ‘oompahs’ came from.  just run with it.  home court and the tide along with coach satan roll.  roll tide!!    
 
9-2  florida st @ pittsburgh.  florida st favored by 10.5 points.  florida st makes a point and a statement.  take florida st to win and cover.
 
for my money those are pretty much the only games worth mentioning or watching for week 1.  things don’t get much better week 2 for that matter. trust me.  ah well, the crappy pre-season college games that actually count.  along with the lame wheeze, losing early is better than losing late. hats off to the schools that are playing someone other than the danny rather school of yellow journalism and taxidermy tech the first week.  at least the season is finally almost under way.  enjoy the games and do your utmost to remain semi sane and semi conscious. toss some sort of protein on the barbie, enjoy a bottle or 3 of dago red, and your long labor day weekend will be set.  be safe.
 
jmh    
 
    

box cars and snake eyes the final chapter(?)

with 2 comments

the spring had turned very warm. he was out in the back tearing down what was left of an old shed that mother nature and gravity had started tearing down several years ago. emma had been after him to finish the job for about that long as well. today was the day. with the hot spring sun beating down he’d taken his shirt off and he was beating away at the last remaining standing wall. wall was a stretch but you get the picture. he’d taken a mighty swing with the small sledge and whacked the corner he was working on. a board flew off, it did a cartwheel, then hit him on his left shoulder. a nail bit at his skin. he knew he’d been cut.

emma washed the wound while tsk tsking and semi sort of apologizing for getting him into the predicament. it wasn’t a bad cut but it bled some and was what one could almost call a deep wound. they thought about going to get a few stitches for it when emma gasped.

‘what the hell?’

‘great. now what?’

‘ah…um…just a sec.’

he flinched when she began to fish around in the wound with a pair of tweezers.

‘why i’ll be…’

‘what for christ’s sake?’

going to get the cut stitched up was soon forgotten. emma quickly finished washing the wound. put some antiseptic on it. then bandaged it. they sat at the kitchen table. a tiny micro chip about the size of a dime sat between them. neither of them said anything. he nodded towards the back door and got up. emma followed suit. when they were outside emma tried to say something but he put a finger to his lips and nodded once again at what was left of the shed.

‘what’s with all the secrecy? and more importantly what’s up with the chip in your shoulder?’

‘i think they’re connected.’

he then spun the strange tale he’d been living or at least thought he he’d been living for what seemed like months or years. all of it. from keith richards to the nurse/angel/agent and the magic light. emma didn’t say a word. she just stood there semi awe struck and listened.

‘so, here we are today. i cut myself and i guess you find the missing piece to the puzzle. that chip.’

‘ok.’

‘ah…some how or another that chip is playing a big part in all of this. i’ll tell you what emma. i don’t want to play anymore.’

they talked quietly for a half hour then he left to go into town. emma went back into the house and started dinner. she left the chip alone and on the table where it had been sitting.

when she heard the pick up returning she went outside. he got out of the pickup and motioned towards the old shed again. they talked quietly for another 10 minutes or so. after which they went back into the house and acted as if nothing had happened while they ate a quick supper. about an hour before sunset he got back in the truck and headed west towards the setting sun. he drove about 4 miles until he found the spot he was looking for. a small turnout on the other side of the road with two old california oaks on either side of a barbed wire fence. he slipped the truck out of gear and made a coasting u-turn into the turn out where he stopped under the trees. the early evening air was beginning to get cooler as he slipped the burner phone out of his pocket. it was the reason he’d gone into town before dinner. he’d already made a couple of calls on it.

‘hello?’

‘hey, mike. the old truck is giving me trouble. i made a run out to the dump and on the way back it sorta conked out on me. can you give me a hand?’

‘sure, my brother. you’re on stoney point road right?’

‘yep. under the twin oaks.’

‘i know the spot. i’ll be right out.’

‘i ain’t going anywhere soon.’

he closed the phone and sat in the truck listening to the ticking of the cooling engine and some early evening crickets. soon he saw headlights in the distance. it was mike. he got out of the truck and waited for his friend. they exchanged greetings as he climbed into mike’s car.

‘let’s just sit a spell. i have a story to spin. ok?’

‘sure, bro. i got all night. whatever you say.’

he grinned and said, ‘i hope it won’t take that long.’

then he began his tale once again. the same story he told to emma. plus, a few more things.

‘wow. that’s some story. you sure about all this? i mean i remember that header you took into the ditch by the store back when…’

‘mike. the fucking chip is sitting on the kitchen table.’

‘yeah. yeah. ok.’

‘you remember stanley the japanese commo guy from nam, right?’

‘sure do. he was righteous. didn’t know you still talked to him.’

‘i hadn’t for years. though i still had his number. i spoke to him tonight. he’s working for this rich armenian guy down in l.a. these days. long story short the armenian is tight with this jewish dude who can get stuff done. the two bonded over the genocide thing. stanley with both of the guys helping is working on this. neither of whom is very fond of any sort of government stuff.’

‘didn’t take you long to get your own witness protection plan going did it?’

‘not really, man. like i said when i saw that chip i knew i was done and that i had to get out. asap.’

the man’s phone chirped. he picked it up and for the most part just listened with an occasional a huh or got it thrown in now and then. mike was lost in his own thoughts along with the strangeness of the whole situation. it was full on dark when the man said goodbye and closed the phone. mike looked at him.

‘stanley still gets shit done, my friend. he sends his greetings and says you two ought to get together soon and bullshit about the nam.’

yeah. sure…i mean…what’s up?’

‘ok. a few details still need ironing out but the two heavies are fronting emma and me some cash. a nice chunk. anything to get over on good old uncle sam as it were. stanley has an off shore bank account opened with the cash. emma and i disappear. the chip stays in the house. whomever, with any luck, won’t know we’ve high tailed it until it’s too late. we hit this used car place in frisco stanley knows. we dump the truck there and buy another ride under a front stanley will have worked out by the time we get there. which should be before they close tonight. this truck will just sit in the lot’s garage for a few months then disappear.’

‘what about the house?’

‘stanley says eventually the bank will put it on the market. the armenian has always wanted to become a cattle rancher and gentleman cowboy. he’ll swoop in and buy it with his connections. then he’ll start his gentleman cowboy cattle biz and send me 50% of his profits. simple as that. or so it seems.’

‘boy howdy is about all i can come up with, man. where you gonna go?’

‘maybe vegas for awhile. hide in plain sight in sin city for a time. the jewish guy says it would be the best place until the heat cools down. easy access to off shore stuff there as well.’

the two old friends chatted for a bit more then made their goodbyes.

‘they may come and talk to you eventually, mike.’

‘fuck it. don’t mean nothing. right?’

‘yeah, sure. hasta la vista, mi hermano.’

‘yeah, mi hermano. hasta la vista.’

the man went to his truck fired it up and drove home. emma had a few things packed. she knew they were leaving. when he came in the back door he just nodded and they each picked up a bag and headed out to the truck. he went back inside and grabbed a couple of CD’s. stopping by the kitchen table he gently picked up the micro chip and then slipped it under the carpet in a corner of the living room. it would have to do.

he went back out to the truck got inside, smiled, and held emma’s hand. he handed her the CD’s and she picked one in the dark and put it in the player. he backed out of the drive and headed towards highway 101 and the south on ramp. the flying burrito brothers softly filled the truck. he smiled again at emma. she smiled back. a tear rolled down her cheek. she found a tissue and wiped it away. turning her head towards the window she quietly coughed. a small black glob tinged in red was caught in the tissue. another tear rolled down her cheek. gram was singing, ‘cody cody’.

Cody Cody
I hear you say.
I hear your voice
calling me away.

I’m not afraid
to think of what I might find.
I will be yours
will you be mine?

We’ve all been young,
we’ve all been old.
We’ve all been sheltered
from the cold.

Come to my side
and say what I think I already know.
I’m going away,
don’t you want to go?

I remember the face
that Harvey drew.
It was of a man
that my eyes saw through.
Come by my side
before the evening is gone.
And see where else
this body’s flown.
“Cody Cody”, words and music by gram parsons, chris hillman, and bernie leadon.

jmh

Written by john hauge

August 21, 2013 at 12:03 pm

box cars and snake eyes re-visited part 4

with 2 comments

not long after the sun made it’s dive into the western pacific dinner was served by a quiet filipino gentleman. it was simple fare though it was served on fine dinnerware. the man ate rather quickly then retired back to his lounge chair out on the front patio. darkness had taken it’s usual hold by that time and he spent several minutes listening to the now invisible surf before he nodded off again.

he wasn’t sure if he was dreaming or if the time travel had kicked in or what but emma was there. or was it some sort of shattering reality? he had no clue. none the less, he was talking to several men in some nondescript setting about something or another. they were chattering away when emma made her entrance. she was walking towards him with a couple of men as well. as she was walking towards him she waved as if she wanted him to come and meet her. it seemed as if she had a question for him or something to tell him. he began walking towards her but realized he had no interest at all in meeting or even speaking to the two men with her. as he drew closer to emma he woke up.

or so it seemed. he still wasn’t sure what was going on. a vision, dream, or reality? the only thing he was sure of was he was now in a white room with no curtains that almost resembled a hospital room. the nurse/angel/agent was there and the luke skywalker light saber thing had made another appearance. it was in the hands of the nurse. she was moving it over his body. it was difficult but he finally managed to croak out.

‘if luke’s father shows up i’m leaving.’

‘shh. save the jokes for later.’

after a bit she put the light down and spoke to him.

‘the blood work showed a few strange anomalies. we aren’t sure what they mean as yet. it was decided that perhaps another dose from the light saber, as you’ve put it, might straighten things out, as it were. at this point we just don’t know.’

he sighed. ‘lovely. just fucking great. now i’m an experiment gone wrong. hopefully, not horribly wrong. right?’

she didn’t say anything as she picked up the light and continued her work.

‘nose picker doesn’t have anything to do with this…situation? does he?’

‘no. i’m in charge here. he’s just ancillary to all of this…’

‘ancillary. nice word for that a-hole prick.’

‘just try and relax. i’ll be finished here shortly. then i’ll see about getting you back home for a little R & R.’

the man closed his eyes and said, ‘ok. sounds good. i’ll shut up.’

she placed her hand on his forehead. it was cool to the touch.

he was in bed. his own. there was a warmth beside him along with the lovely and familiar morning smell of his emma. a thought flashed threw his mind about the smell of babies and long time loves. that thought was lost when the bedside phone began to ring. he rolled over and grabbed the ringing phone.

‘yeah?’

‘morning sunshine.’

it was mike an old nam buddy and sunday pool playing buddy.

‘sorry about the early wake-up but the store just called and said they had a cesspool back up overnight and the place would be closed today. no pool for us. i just wanted to give you a heads up so you could make other plans if you wanted.’

mike was always the first one there on sundays. just after the little market/pool hall opened. he would chat, drink coffee, and eat a couple of plastic microwave burritos with his off and on girlfriend, the owner, while they waited for the rest of the players to wander in.

‘yeah. sure, thanks man. i appreciate it.’

‘not a problem. talk to you later. i have a few more calls to make.’

he hung up the phone and laid back in bed. emma was awake and on her side resting her head in her hand.

‘mike?’

he smiled. ‘yep. your lucky day. no pool. cesspool trouble. how do you want to spend all that luck?’

she smiled back. ‘i don’t know. let me think on it while you get up and start the coffee.’

he leaned in for a quick kiss and got out of bed. he was waiting for the coffee to finish when he heard the flying burrito brothers and gram parsons singing.

emma stepped up into the kitchen and said.

‘nice way to start a sunday.’

he poured them each a cup of the steaming brew and splashed some milk in his.

‘any ideas for the day, lady?’

‘yes, i do, sir. a picnic. we have leftover chicken and roasted potatoes. i’ll make a potato salad out of the spuds. we have cheese, a baguette, and more bottles of wine than we know what to do with. let’s go to fort ross and eat lunch with the sheep.’

‘ok. that works for me. i’ll start getting some stuff together. the sooner we leave the better the spot we’ll find for our lunch.’

both of them busied themselves with their tasks.

it had rained the night before but it was a fine spring morning. a bit on the cool side but it would warm up later. meadow larks were bustling about doing their business while singing their light hearted melodies. fort ross was an old russian settlement on the california coast. the russians had left after seward’s alaska purchase which had ended any russian dreams of a foothold in america. an old wooden fort still stood there surrounded by grassland and grazing sheep. it afforded spectacular views of the northern california coast especially on a bright clear pristine spring day.

they quickly finished their work and the old pickup was loaded. they pulled out of the dirt drive and headed into town to buy some dessert for lunch. after their purchase they made their way up to the small town of cazadero and turned left on ft ross road. it was an old winding logging road that wound through the centuries old redwood trees and ended up at ft ross after it crossed highway 1. it was, as usual, a lovely ride. they spent their time chatting and listening to gram parsons CD’s while enjoying the rain cleaned air and the redwood forest.

for a late sunny sunday morning the fort was fairly free of tourists and locals. they found a grassy spot in the semi shade of a redwood. the blue pacific sparkled. he’d spread out a tarp and a blanket over the top of it. they ate their lunch as they drank a bottle of pinot noir. it went well with the leftover chicken, potato salad, and amazing view. chocolate cake served as dessert. the grazing sheep ignored them.

the food and wine were gone. the only thing left was a chunk of bread. he tossed it in the vicinity of a large ram. who wandered over. glanced at them, ate the bread, then continued grazing. they both laughed.

emma yawned and suggested a nap in the dappled shade. he agreed. they stretched out and held each other in their arms. emma was soon asleep. he followed shortly with a gram parsons tune, ‘a song for you’, running through his head. he thought he heard himself say, ‘i never want this to end.’ emma held him tightly.

jmh

Written by john hauge

August 8, 2013 at 10:20 am

box cars and snake eyes re-visited part 3

with 2 comments

he was almost running when he heard the cantina door slam closed.  the sound of that act more or less calmed him down.  an old white guy running around the streets of a predominately illegal mexican barrio just might attract the wrong attention.  especially if johnny law got involved considering the circumstances of the murder he supposedly committed over night.  jesus, things just kept getting better and better.  
 
slowing his pace to a stroll he casually looked behind him and down the street.  no one was out and about in any direction.  at least no one he could see.  he made up his mind to continue east to avoid the homeless guy from earlier.   when he got to eastern ave. he made a left and began walking up the hill.  
 
stress, the heat, and lack of any breeze or wind began to take it’s toll.  he was sweating heavily when he heard the sound of a car coming up from behind.  he resisted the urge to turn around and check to see if it was the cops.  no sense looking any more suspicious than he already did.  the sound of the car got closer and seemed to be slowing.  it took all of his concentration not to bolt like a race horse.  
 
out of the corner of his eye he caught the front quarter panel of the car.  black.  crap.  the cops.  the car was indeed slowing.  it stopped and it was then he realized it was a limo.  the back passenger side window slid down.
 
‘ride, soldier?’
 
the voice was familiar and as be bent down to look inside at the back seat he knew before he saw her.  the nurse/angel/government goon.
 
‘i suppose i don’t have a choice.  right?’
 
‘let’s see…not really.  you get in and enjoy the cold air and have a chat or i use my cell phone to call 911.’
 
‘nice to know somethings never change.’
 
‘get in, soldier.’      
 
the lock clicked.  he sighed and opened the door then slid in beside the lady.
 
‘alright.  i’m in.  what’s the deal?’
 
she didn’t say anything as she hit the button to open the partition separating the driver from the passengers.
 
‘yes, mam?’  it was the blonde german woman from his driveway yesterday.  yesterday?  yesterday seemed so very long ago.  from his backseat angle she looked remarkably like heidi klum.  
 
‘take us to the house in manhattan beach.’
 
the partition was already sliding closed.  a muffled, ‘yes, mam.’,  was heard.
 
‘ah, was or is, that who i think…’
 
his seat mate laughed and said.  ‘things and people aren’t always as glamorous as they seem.  most things aren’t.  some folks like to get out of the box whenever they can.’
 
‘like keith?’  
 
‘not exactly.  but the blonde driving us down to the beach isn’t why i’m here, or you, for that matter.’
 
‘fine.  get to the point.’
 
‘OK.  look, soldier, when we come calling.  you do as we say.  you know that, right?’
 
‘i guess.  i mean…i don’t know…’
 
‘yes, well, you do.  if you don’t things get complicated.  understand?’
 
‘oh.  cops and murder suspect stuff?’
 
‘bingo.  you catch on quick.’
 
he sighed and looked out the tinted window.  they were almost to the 110 freeway.  they’d be taking it south soon.  at least it was cold inside the limo and unless nurse/angel called the cops he was somewhat safe.  at least for now.
 
‘so, is it finally time for my big job?  whatever that is?’
 
‘i see.  that makes a bit of sense then.  um, your reluctance to cooperate the other morning.’
 
‘look, you’ve bounced me around a bit in the last what…?’
 
‘it hasn’t been long.  just a few days really.’
 
‘you mean, ah, everything…a few days?’
 
‘give or take.’
 
‘what about emma?’
 
she looked at him oddly then said, ‘emma?’.
 
‘yes, my wife.  is…is she a part of this?’
 
it was her turn to sigh.  ‘soldier, you remember, of course, emma has been dead for years.  cancer i think.’
 
‘come on.  yeah, i know that but she…she was there.  at home.  i saw her.  felt her.  she fried me some chicken.  we ate.  we laughed and listened to an old gene autry CD several times.  then we went to bed.  you can’t tell me that wasn’t real.  it was like, well, like it was years ago.  jesus.’ 
 
‘jesus had nothing to do with it.  even though there would seem to be ah, well, similarities.’
 
he didn’t know what to say or think.  she seemed like she was telling the truth.  she also seemed totally confused by what he’d just told her.  
 
‘i don’t know what’s going on.  i only know what i saw and felt.’
 
‘as for emma, i’m sorry, but i don’t know what’s going on there.  we had nothing to do with what happened.  it may have something to do with why we wanted to see you.  some fairly powerful things are at work here.  you know that.  or at least did.  we need to run a few simple tests.  blood work mostly.  just to be sure things are OK.’
 
he felt as if he was sinking into the lush leather seat.  the words numb and crushed were also on his mind.
 
‘you don’t look well.  are you OK?’
 
‘what do you think?  emma.  er, ah, the murder.  did i do it?’
 
‘no.  you cooperate and it will go away as quickly as it appeared.  we needed to be sure you knew where you stood with…things.  you work for us now, soldier.  we are your life.’
 
‘sweet.  hunky dory.’
 
it was all he could think of to say.  nothing more.  he’d do as she said and see what happened.  for now.  though the thing about emma was getting weird.  very weird.  even considering everything else.
 
with traffic it was mid afternoon by the time they made it into manhattan beach.  the limo pulled up in back of a very nice two story beachfront home.  the limo door latches clicked and the nurse/angel motioned for him to get out.  it was cooler by the ocean with a slight off shore breeze. motioning again she had him moving through a wrought iron gate and into a small patio at the back of the home.  he was thinking the view on the other side of the house must spectacular, especially at sunset.  her voice brought him out of his revery.
 
‘you can get comfortable either inside or go out front and watch the ocean.  i’ll call for you when i’m ready to draw some blood.’
 
‘sure, count dracula.’  
 
‘funny man.  the old VA joke.  keith is around here somewhere.’
 
‘he is?’
 
‘yes.  he’s been here for a month or so rehearsing and relaxing.  his wife and i are old friends.’
 
the man gave her a very strange look.  the he remembered an earlier conversation they’d had about keith.  all he could think of to say was something inane.
 
‘mick too?’  
 
‘ah, no.  i don’t know where he is.  maybe you can ask keith if he’s around.  it’s still early for him.  he might be asleep.’
 
the view was outstanding.  nothing like an ocean vista along with the sound and smell of the ocean.  he hoped he’d be around for sunset.  even though there were no clouds in the sky to ramp it up.  he was lost at sea when he heard her call him into the house.  the blood work equipment was set up on the dining room table.  he let her have her way with him.  when she was finished she told him if the tests were OK he’d be home soon.  she also told him regardless the murder rap was going away.
 
he decided to stay inside and watch the ocean.  around 4pm he turned on the TV to watch the news.  the TV was tuned to the local ABC station. he wasn’t paying much attention to the news more so to the ocean.  then he heard the announcer say something about the l.a.p.d. canceling a search for a murder suspect.  they had somehow or another confused a few pieces of surveillance film.  
 
the reporter was marc brown.  he didn’t know him from the man in the moon but respected his work from his time living in los angeles.  the remote was close by and he grabbed it quickly changing the channel to the local NBC affiliate.  they were coming out of a dog food ad.  when the announcer came on he had the same story.  it was, chuck henry, another old time l.a. news hand.  it must be true.  she’d kept her word.  the murder suspect rap had gone away just like that.  he turned off the TV. 
 
turning his attention back to the ocean he moved outside.  he sat in a lounge chair and drifted off to sleep.  a voice woke him.
 
‘cheers, mate.’
 
from behind him it was a smiling keith richards holding a guitar case in one hand and waving to him with the other.
 
‘i speck i’ll be working with you again sometime.  till then be well, guv.’
 
before he could say anything keith had turned and was gone.
 
the nurse/agent appeared.
 
‘i see you saw keith.  did he say anything about mick?’
 
‘no.  he wasn’t very talkative.’
 
‘oh, well.  the preliminary results look to be ok.  for now, all things are a go.’
 
‘OK.  whatever that means.  thanks for keeping your word about the murder.  when can i leave?’
 
‘you’re welcome.  soon.  very soon.  just try and relax.  remember when we call you listen.  no going off the reservation as the saying goes. capisce?’
 
‘yeah.  capisco.’ 
 
he rubbed his hands over his face.  he needed a shower and a drink.  in front of him the sun was in free fall and had just hit the far edge of the horizon.  you could almost hear the splash as the sky turned a vivid orange red.  BBQ smells filled the salty beach air.  sea gulls noisily rushed to their nightly roosts.  soon it would be dark.
 
jmh           
 

box cars and snake eyes re-visited part 2

with 2 comments

the air was almost black along with foul smelling.  at first he thought it was a dream.  vietnam?  long ago?  no.  not that.  this was real too but in the present.  the odd time travel bit was happening again.  at least there were no ringing phones.  he rubbed his eyes for several seconds. maybe it was a dream after all.  when he stopped and opened his eyes again the black air was still there.  he sighed.  the foul air burning his lungs.  
 
he was standing on a sidewalk.  he knew where he was.  east l.a.  and it was summer in the city of lost angels.  so much for his memory of last night and the dead of winter up north in his little country cottage.  oh, man, was about all he could think of at the moment.  
 
it was already very hot for early morning.  even for lotus land summer.  a nasty inversion layer was trapping every bit of particulate matter low to the ground. it was at least several hundred feet thick.  almost like the the hills were on fire.  and burning madly down towards the valleys.  he coughed and rubbed his eyes again and noticed a homeless man walking towards him carrying a couple of large crumpled paper cups.  the guy was big and vibed bad juju.  he was still a couple of hundred feet away though.  but, making a bee line straight towards him.  turning the man walked quickly in the opposite direction.  
 
he was on city terrace drive and marengo.  just south and steps from the rush of the 10 freeway.  he stayed on city terrace and kept moving east.  for some reason he thought of the house not too far away.  years ago, every christmas, it was decorated with thousands of lights.  you could see it from the freeway as you either flew by or crawled by as the case may be.  one christmas, before emma, a vietnamese girl he was dating made him take her by the house.  up close the house was even more impressive.  it was massive as well.  a small but steady stream of cars made their way by the home.  a portly guy and his wife were out front dressed as mr. and mrs. claus.  christmas carols played from hidden speakers.  the lights glimmered and twinkled.  it was almost jaw dropping.  especially when santa walked up to the car and handed his giggling date a handful of christmas candy through the open car window. ‘merry christmas!’ he said with a distinct mexican accent.  incongruous at best.  totally lala land.
 
the house was still there.  still massive but nothing about it spoke of any christmas memories.  he stopped to look at the home and catch his breath and wondered aloud if it was still a christmas tradition.  he glanced west and was pleased to see that the homeless had given up on whatever it was he was thinking.  he had headed back to his probable corner at soto and marengo where he might catch some spare change from folks leaving the usc medical centers.  county usc and keck a bit further east nestled in the small rolling hills of east l.a.
 
moving west again he wondered why he was there.  he did know that eventually somehow or another he’d end up back home again.  it was just one of those things.  he wasn’t used to it but there was nothing he could do about it.  what bothered him was not knowing what was going to happen.  he never knew.  he wondered if he’d see the angel/nurse/government agent again.  or keith.  one or the other usually showed up. sometimes together.
 
he was passing the vista motel a large early 60′s structure.  he’d never seen it from this angle.  it was always from the freeway.  you couldn’t miss it.  it was big and sat right on the side of the road.  with the constant freeway noise he often had wondered how anyone ever got any rest.  on the side of the street he was on he’d stopped in the shade of a mexican cantina.  he stuck his hands in his pockets and came out with a few small bills.  the bar was already open so he went inside to get out of the heat, to grab a beer, and think a bit more.
 
it was dark and cool inside.  as his eyes became adjusted to the light he noticed a couple of other early morning or all night drinkers were down at the end of the bar furthest from the door.  the place reeked of stale beer, old smoke, and seedy desperation.  as he settled into a bar stool his bare arms stuck to the bar top.  the bartender wandered over wiping his hands on an old dirty towel.  he made a sad attempt at cleaning the bar top with the rag.  
 
‘cerveza, por favor.  coors light.’, the man said, as he placed a five spot on the bar.    
 
the bartender nodded and went to fetch the beer.
 
the beer arrived sans a glass which given the circumstances was just as well.  the TV was on and as he sipped the ice old brew he watched it without much interest.  it was the news on a local spanish station.  a rather pretty reporter was standing in front of the old parker center building yammering away in spanish about something or another.  the only interest he was paying was to her ample cleavage.  given his meager knowledge of spanish he’d gleaned she was talking about a murder that had occurred last night.  the suspect was still apparently at large also apparently considered to be armed and dangerous.  he yawned then sipped his beer.
 
the next moment was one of those things that made these time travel deals a white knuckled scary ride.  it was as if he’d plunged through all of dante’s rings and had boarded the boat steaming into the port of hades.  his picture appeared on the TV.  ms boobs was saying something about the photo being the suspect the cops were searching for.  a person interest.  yeah, it was him.  what the fuck?  he was even wearing the clothes he had on in the photo.  
 
he was so startled he was sitting ramrod straight on the bar stool.  his bottle of beer frozen halfway to his lips.  jesus, a new wrinkle indeed.  he finally got his arm to move again and he drank long from the beer.  thankfully, neither the bartender or the drunks at the other end of the bar were paying no attention to him or the TV.  he finished his beer.  left the five on the bar.  said nothing then stepped back out into the black air, hot sun, and blinding light.
 
jmh                

 

box cars and snake eyes re-visited

with 6 comments

sunrise was still twenty minutes away but on the horizon the sky had turned a muted gold with a pale turquoise above it. the man was vaguely aware of this. sleep, alcohol, and probably a good amount of smoke made it very hard for the man to welcome the new day with any enthusiasm. laying in bed half sleep he could see the colored morning sky and the leafless trees through his bedroom window. for some reason that sight bothered him though his hangover prevented him from putting a finger on exactly why it did.

the bedroom and probably the rest of the house still smelled of last nights dinner. garlic, rosemary, and fried chicken. he yawned. stretched. then rolled over to give his emma a good morning kiss, and if she was awake, to thank her again for last nights wonderful meal. he realized the other half of his bed was empty. cold to the touch as well.

this jolted the man fully awake. he threw off the bed covers and sat up.

‘emma? emma?’

no answer. as he fumbled around for his underwear and sandals he wondered where she was.

‘emma? emma? hey, you here? emma?’

it was way too early for any sort of shopping adventures even for her. what was going on? where was she? the man was out of bed and semi dressed as he made his way out of the bedroom. he was still calling his wife’s name as he went from room to room. spotting his old pickup through the second bedroom window he knew emma couldn’t be far away.

‘emma? emma? come on girl. where are you?’

he was in the kitchen. the smell of last nights dinner was very strong there. dinner dishes and a cast iron frying pan sat dry in the rack beside the sink. his truck was still out back so maybe she had gone up to the country store on the corner. early for that but, well, maybe. he got to the back door and then he heard it. a car parked out on the dirt driveway. the man moved aside the curtain to get a better look outside. he saw the car. it’s motor softly idling and it’s exhaust as thick as smoke in the cold morning air.

that was it. very cold outside. trees with no leaves. it had been late spring yesterday. hadn’t it? warm with meadowlarks singing. emma had made fried chicken for dinner. he grabbed both sides of the backdoor jam to steady himself. looking through the small window he stared at the car. it was a limo. a very pretty blond woman wearing a chauffeurs hat sat behind the wheel. next to her in the front seat sat keith richards of the rolling stones he was wearing a semi sort of smile on his craggy face. he raised both hands in a gesture that could only mean, who else would it be? keith’s smile grew into a huge grin and then the man heard the all to familiar cackling coming from the enclosed limo.

it was happening again. that was for sure. but why? deja vu all over again? the man stepped into the cold winter morning to meet his fate while he and his heart ached for his long dead emma.

as he walked toward the idling limo the passenger side door opened. keith’s cackling laughter had died away. walking around the open door he noticed that the old stone was apparently sleeping. or more likely passed out. he heard the driver speak in a soft voice with a slight german accent.

‘good morning, sir. please, get in. i’m afraid you’ll be alone until keef wakes up.’

sticking his head inside the car he said.

‘hmmm. yeah, at least you said, please. look, um, i just woke up and i’m not really dressed for a road trip. what’s the deal? where are we going? who wants me now? and why?’

he stopped talking when he noticed the pretty blond just staring at him.

‘ah, christ. i haven’t even had my morning coffee yet. it’s cold out here. i’m going back in the house.’

he closed the closed the limo door and turned back toward the kitchen. the chauffeur was saying something but he didn’t care. when he reached the kitchen door he looked back at the idling car. keith richards was still asleep, or passed out, and the driver was still staring at him, but now she was talking to someone on the phone. great, he thought, as he went back inside closing the door. the man was careful to lock it as well. though if it was them again a locked door meant nothing.

he busied himself making coffee and tried very hard not to think about the limo sitting outside on his dirt driveway. eventually whatever was going come out because of it would make itself known. another drug run with the rolling stones guitarist? maybe. though the thing with his dead wife emma was another story.

the house very clearly smelled of rosemary garlic fried chicken. no doubt about it. two sets of dinner dishes and a couple of wine glasses sat in the dish drying rack. when he opened the refrigerator for some milk for his coffee he spotted a plate of leftover fried chicken along with a container of leftover roasted potatoes and carrots. yeah, last night had been real enough. or was it? emma was dead. she died of cancer years ago. maybe it was just the ache and misery of her loss that still haunted him.

‘ah, but, ghosts making fried chicken, roasted potatoes and carrots?’

he’d said that aloud as the phone in the kitchen started to ring. he sipped his coffee and stared at the ringing phone. he wasn’t going to answer it but by the twentieth ring he got up to answer the phone if only to stop it’s incessant ringing.

‘yeah, who is it? no, tell you what, i don’t care. leave me alone.’

he hung up the phone. several seconds later it started ringing again. this time he unplugged the phone from the wall. sipping his coffee he walked back to his bedroom and unplugged that phone as well. silence filled the little home. when he got back to the kitchen he noticed that the limo was gone.

jmh

2012-13 college football bowl picks & predictions

with 2 comments

hey, kids, what time is it? well, buffalo bob, it’s college football’s bowl madness time. yes siree, kids, it’s that time of year when the season is over and 140 or so FBS schools get to go bowling. holiday bowling. money money money bowling. along with at least an extra 21 days of practice the left outs don’t get. those 21 days are big time when next season rolls around. probably just as big as the money handed out to the conferences involved. the coaches love the 21 days more than the money. well, maybe.

at any rate, we get to sit through this holiday season and the next with the BCS thingy. that flawed mess that seemingly worked out ok this year. though someone always gets hosed by the tedious computers and/or arcane bowling rules and regulations. by this time in 2014 the BCS will be history and we’ll have our first playoffs. though i’m still not convinced that it’s going to work. i guess we’ll just have to wait and see. that old wheeze, be careful what you wish for, keeps popping up in the back of my mind. plus, i was never really sure if i wanted them in the first place. at any rate, we are going to be saddled with the ‘new and so called improved system’ for 14 years, people. 14 years is a long ass time to be saddled with anything. especially if the humps involved screw it up in some form or another. that, kids, you can take to the bank. they’re gonna screw it up. when has anything the suits ever came up with worked liked they said it would? exactly. yes, they have some guy that ran the college basketball big dance for a number of years. is he up for it? then there’s the fact, four teams might not be enough, however, anymore begins to dilute the regular season. i could go on and on with other points but i would just be repeating myself ad nauseum. if you’re really interested you can find those other bowl rants in my archives. they’re all still relevant as far as i’m concerned.

i’ll just be picking the bowls i have some sort of interest in watching, for whatever reason or reasons. straight up picks. no points or spreads to worry about. the only thing you as a fan have to worry about is if your starting qb or half of the defensive line get picked up by the cops for whatever sort of criminal violation or activity. yeah, it’s that time of year when college football players seem to get dumber than they normally are. too much time on their hands even with the extra practices. unlike the coaches, the kids are fed up with practicing by this point in the year. so they rape, rob, and pillage while drunk and or stoned just for something to do. ‘hey, let’s steal the computer nerds car and go across town and break into the dorms at all woman’s state.’ ‘great idea. pass me the bong and jd red first. i’m not wasted enough.’ i can relate to the not wasted enough deal but that’s a major veer and another story all together. but i think you get the picture.

as always, this is for entertainment purposes only. you should never take anything here as any sort of wagering advice. doing so would be asinine and make you much crazier than you really are.

one last word of warning. sitting through all of the bowl games on a couch in front of your TV will cause even more brain damage to your already addled state. just pick a handful of games you may find interesting or use my handy BCS bowling guide listed below and save yourself the loss of much needed sanity and some more brain cells.

rock ‘n’ roll.

12/22 maaco. boise st & washington. my first pick as we’re out of town and on the high seas until this date. no, we haven’t joined the navy. so, there’s no point in pointing out any of the earlier games as i can’t watch them and just looking at the list gives me the dry heaves. though the poinsettia on the 20th is of some interest with san diego st and byu. too bad i’ll miss it. ok. boise st gets this vegas bowl just about every year since byu decided sin city wasn’t for them anymore. that’s fine with the boise faithful even though they lust after greener bowling pastures. maybe one day broncos. easy one here. boise st should hammer the huskies in any sane man’s world. take boise st.

12/24 hawaii. fresno st & smu. a nice way to spend christmas eve. a quiet pre-christmas meal sans the relatives, if you’re lucky. some drinks and TV football. june jones gets to go back to hawaii the scene of his earlier coaching accomplishments. a nice gesture by the bowling boys there if there ever was one. if the fresno st guys don’t lose focus, an easy thing to do in honolulu with all the oiled up and barely dressed japanese lady tourists, they should ruin coach jones homecoming. take fresno st.

12/27 holiday. ucla & baylor. the bruins get to travel 160 miles or so south to san diego for this game after losing two in a row to the trees. yippy. i hope they will plan on playing and not partying and scaring the local female talent into hiding. if they come to play they win. maybe. coach mora is for real though. then there’s the fact baylor went on a roll their last 3 or 4 games and shut down some pretty good teams. one to watch. home boy says, take the bruins.

12/29 alamo. oregon st & texas. nice match-up here, kids. i’m assuming the game is in san antonio and not some alamo rental car parking lot out in the middle of nowhere. though that actually might be a fun thing if it were. a possible score fest if both teams are into it. one of those, let’s see if we can blow up the scoreboard type deals. fun stuff if it happens. i have to take the beavs but the longhorns could very well win. your choice. on a side note, coach riley would probably rather be in california where he could score as many ‘in-n-out’ animal style double doubles as he wants. hey, that’s what a hamburger is all about. in-n-out. yes, a crass cheap form of commercialism from yours truly. it’s that time of year, college football bowling season!! woohoo! the bowls do it so i may as well go for it. take 1. a couple of in-n-out animal style double doubles pair well with absolut vodka on the rocks. try them both today. cut. i’ll work fairly cheap and you can get in touch with me here. two of the best companies on the planet, in-n-out burgers and absolut vodka. thanks in advance guys. in case you missed it, i’m taking the beavs.

12/31 sun. georgia tech & usc. i had to look up the sun bowl as i’d completely forgotten where it was played. el paso, tx. that ought to make the local chamber of commerce guys cringe. if coach kiffin can get the boys up for this one i’ll be very surprised. i’ll also be surprised if half the squad isn’t in jail by game time. dad kiffin says he’s gone after this game. was he fired or was the high road taken? more importantly, how in the hell was he worth $1.5 mil a year? maybe they both should quit. happy new year’s eve. a toss up. this pick is up to you. the brown eyed girl and i are going out to dinner at a very nice steakhouse. i’ll miss the game. shucks.

1/4 cotton. texas a&m & oklahoma. i’ll tune into this game for several reasons. first, it’s, johnny football’s last chance, for the next 9 months, to wow the locals and TV couch potatoes far and wide with his amazing football magic. if he doesn’t go pro maybe penn & teller can use him in their act. secondly, the sooners missed a BCS bowl. they probably aren’t happy. good match-up and good TV fare. this could be another scoreboard blow out. two words, johnny football. take the aggies to win.

ok. time for the big ones.

1/1 rose. wisconsin & stanford. the grand daddy of them all. with maybe a chance at the B-2 doing a fly-over of the house here. slim but you never know. it did happen one year but at the time i was living closer to pasadena. pasadena got lucky this year. three years in a row for the badger faithful and a date out in probably sunny socal. i always hope for a deluge on jan 1. i never get my wish. the badger faithful know their way around old town by now. the trees faithful on the other hand may or may not show up. it just depends on a lot of stuff. i will actually watch this game. maybe even all of it. with wisconsin having thrown a big hurt on the huskers this could get interesting. i’m thinking possibly a low scoring snooze fest. as a life long PAC (8)(10)12 homer the trees are my pick.

1/1 orange. florida st & northern illinois. with all the transplanted new yorkers, nyc snowbirds, and mob capos in florida this would have been a perfect game for rutgers had they beaten louisville. they didn’t. and guess what? n. illinois is here instead of them. louisville got a better offer. take florida st.

1/2 sugar. florida & louisville. bourbon st beat. um, look it up. if the kids don’t get crazed and or tossed in the slammer while in the big easy the cardinals ought to win.

1/3 fiesta. kansas st & oregon. hey, maybe visor head kelly’s last game for my beloved ducks. or does he do one more year before turning pro? we wait and see. fingers crossed. in the mean time, someone let mike bellotti know he can have his old job back if he wants it. works for me. i think this game will probably set some sort of bowling scoring record. if it doesn’t it might be a yawner. another game i’ll more than likely watch at least for a while. maybe. QUACK QUACK!!! says it all.

1/7 BCS Championship. notre dame & alabama. i generally don’t watch this game. regardless of who’s playing. you shouldn’t either. take the wife out for a nice dinner instead. tell her you love her and thanks for letting you ruin most of her saturdays for the past 4 months or so. also, a few week nights as well. the winner? i don’t care. nick satan or the domers? please. ok. so i hope the domers win. they probably won’t. meh. i mean the season has been over for over a month. come on. at this point, who cares? other than those involved. or the dimwitted who bought tickets to this let’s cram as many commercials into a three/four hour period as we can in this made for TV mind numbing mess. riddle me this, who won the crystal thing five years ago? exactly.

only 11 games out of the bazillion or so bowler games? yep. most of them are turkeys and not worth your time. mine in particular. i’ll tune in to a few of my picks, if only in passing. it’s just hard to work up any sort of interest in these bowl games anymore. it’s more about the TV money and how much money the local yokels can fleece from the rubes who buy tickets to these turkeys than it is about college football. sad but true. it’s the brave new world of college ball. schools bouncing from league to league searching for the golden ring, egg, or big money bowl shopping. raiders of the lost ark as it were. the coming of the dreaded super conferences paired with a sharp wooden stake to be driven into the hearts of those of us who remember back when. crap.

is it september yet?

jmh

2012 college football picks & predictions week 14

with 2 comments

sadly, the final week of the regular college football season is here. the only thing left are the bowl games but, more on them next week. although i may as well just re-run one of my old bowl game rundowns. or maybe not. at any rate, i hope i do better this week as last weeks picks were a hurricane of a train wreck. 4 for 10 making my over all now a pretty crappy, 64 for 130. unless i pick things up this week the 2012 season will officially be my worst ever. ouch. yes, well, exactly what i’ve been telling you for years now. using anything you read here and taking it to some legal or illegal betting spot would be totally stupid. leave your money where it belongs, in your wallet, and nobody gets hurt. i suppose there’s no point in belaboring this any longer. other than the fact our time in vegas was outstanding and lane kiffin needs to go. away. soon. hint. hint.

the point spreads used here are what i determine my wins and losses for the week. the points may change before game time. i don’t care. what is here is what i use. simple as that.

rock ‘n’ roll.

11/29 louisville @ rutgers. rutgers favored by 2.5 points. i guess whoever wins this game gets the big east nod at the best available turkey bowl spot the BCS bowl boys can conjure up for them. with the ruckus caused by rutgers bailing on the league in favor of the big ten there’s going to be a ripple effect that may effect the very existence of the big east. wait and see. all that being said, watching this one may be a nice way to spend a thursday evening in late november. fire place. hot toddy. decent teams with good records against other also rans. pretty much a toss up. take rutgers with the home field and crowd.

11/30 PAC 12 championship. ucla @ stanford. stanford favored by 9.5 points. yeah, one of those rematch thingys that no sane person wants to see. let’s face it, the bruins didn’t play well last week at home. this week they travel up to the trees home court to do it all over again and probably in the rain as well for a shot at the rose bowl or something. anticlimactic for my money especially when the game is only a week apart from their last meeting. that’s the brave new world of college football. with the reality of big time TV money i don’t see how these set ups can be avoided if most teams in the league are playing well and end up beating on each other. at least we won’t have an SEC only big dance game this year but, i digress. if coach mora can get a handle on the foolish and stupid penalty thing the bruins may have a shot at winning. i’m taking ucla to, at the least, get inside the spread. yes, homer stupidity.

11/30 MAC championship. kent st @ northern illinois. n. illinois favored by 5 points. for someone of my generation it seems odd to be writing about kent st and football. then there’s the fact i hardly watch or care about the MAC. yes, tis true. sue me. though with the rematch factor of the PAC 12 game this big MAC attack, sorry, may garner higher TV ratings as they are both on at the same time. the only thing i know about the two schools is the fact the national guard screwed up long ago at kent st. take n. illinois to win and cover the spread.

12/1 texas @ kansas st. no lines. both teams are coming off disappointing losses and both teams need the win here for a shot at a decent bowling berth. take kansas st to win at home.

12/1 oklahoma st @ baylor. oklahoma st favored by 4.5 points. the cowboys don’t play well on the road. though they did manage to cover the spread last week in losing to the sooners. baylor has been up and down in streaks all season. their latest winning streak was against two very good teams. take baylor to somehow win or cover the points.

12/1 oklahoma @ tcu. oklahoma favored by 6.5 points. a statement game for the sooners. take oklahoma to win and cover the points.

12/1 boise st @ nevada. boise st favored by 8.5 points. hopefully, i have this game on the correct day this time around. the easy thing being i can just copy and paste what i wrote last week. this game was supposed to be boise’s big game of the year. they were also supposed to be undefeated at this point. the best of plans often go awry. nevada was also supposed to be much better than they’ve turned out to be. they’re doing ok and even going bowling. or have a shot at it anyway. nevada might surprise but they haven’t done well against better teams. take boise st to win.

12/1 SEC championship. alabama @ georgia. alabama favored by 7.5 points. both teams with identical records. say what you want but as far as their schedules went this year i think georgia played a slightly tougher one. this could be a close game. however, take alabama to win and cover the spread.

12/1 ACC championship. florida st @ georgia tech. florida st favored by 13.5 points. both schools lost last week. this week is for florida st to get it together in order to beat a semi decent team and take the ACC title. take florida st to win and cover the spread.

12/1 BIG 10 championship. nebraska @ wisconsin. no lines. both teams lost to ohio st. the trouble being ohio st isn’t going anywhere anytime soon. the cornhuskers are on a six game winning streak though they play much better at home than on the road. wisconsin’s home field advantage gets muddied by their mediocre record and recent losses. take nebraska to win.

there it is, the last week of the college football season. we’ll have to sit and wait for months until the season rolls around once again. as always, seared red meat and red wine pair well with college football saturdays. enjoy your week and the final regular season games of the year. no, you can’t count next weeks army navy game. be safe. be semi sane.

jmh

2012 college football picks & predictions week 13

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could there have been a crazier saturday in college football? maybe. maybe not. the only good thing being i went 7 for 10 with my picks and predictions. my over all now stands at 60 for 120 with just a few weeks left in the season. at one point early saturday evening i was thinking i might go 9 for 10 for the week. that’s what thinking will get you sometimes. TV talking heads and the get paid for what they write sports types will mull last week for awhile and probably never come up with any real answers as to what happened other than two or three teams lost that probably shouldn’t have. that was then. this is now. thanksgiving week. my favorite week of the year. plenty of college football paired with over eating and drinking. what could be better? not much i’m sure. other than the fact we’re spending the week here in las vegas. and given the fact vegas hotel room internet access can be sketchy, hopefully, i can get this out in a timely manner. or while i can.

just remember this is for entertainment purposes only. taking anything you learn from here and say go downstairs to the sports book and use it to place any money on any of the games would be stupid and insane at best. do not do it. leave your money where it belongs, in your wallet, and nobody gets hurt. simple as that. taking care of your family comes first.

the point spreads used here are what i base my wins and losses on for the week. the spreads may change by game times but it matters not. they are what they are. i thought about just making picks with no points this week but so far the odds makers are making that moot in a number of cases. anyway, i’ll be using the points if they have any by the time i post this.

it’s thanksgiving and rivalry weekend. or it used to be rivalry weekend. these days any number of schools play their old rivalry nemeses at any point earlier in the season. though in the old days this was the week for those games. there are still a few of those games left for this week and after last weeks shake ups some of the games this week are very important to the BCS picture. in other words, some of these rivalry games have big time significance.

rock ‘n’ roll.

11/22 tcu @ texas. texas favored by 8.5 points. a nice match up and a good way to start off my thanksgiving week picks. the game on turkey day itself. let’s see here, tcu beat baylor rather handily on the road. then they lost to kansas st at home, not embarrassingly so but still a loss. the longhorns are very quietly on a four game winning streak. i’m taking texas to win and cover the points. you should too.

11/24 georgia tech @ georgia. georgia favored by 13 points. if things go sideways again this week this game could have major BCS implications for the bulldogs who, would of course, need to win this one. tech needs a win here in this old rivalry to secure a spot in the ACC playoff against whomever. ACC SEC. home game and crowd for the dawgs. take georgia to win and cover the spread.

11/24 michigan @ ohio st. ohio st favored by 5 points. it’s too bad ohio st is on not so secret double probation and can’t do anything with their so far undefeated season. big blue on the other hand has lost to alabama, notre dame, and nebraska. that tidbit alone plus the fact it’s a homer crowd for the buckeyes make this one an easy pick. take ohio st to win and cover the points.

11/24 oklahoma st @ oklahoma. oklahoma favored by 8.5 points. okie bragging rights here, kids. always a big game regardless of what’s happened so far in the year. the sooners have already lost to kansas st and notre dame at home this year. plus, the cowboys haven’t played well on the road. ipso facto, take the cowboys to at minimum get inside the points. convoluted thinking for sure, however, take oklahoma st.

11/24 oregon @ oregon st. oregon favored by 10.5 points. civil war time in corvallis. what can you say about last weeks duck loss to the trees? the ducks would eventually lose at home? field goal kickers are people too? neither offense came to play? the defenses did? the beavs took care of a hapless cal team very easily. adios, coach tedford. the pac 12 north title is up for grabs. oregon st needs this one along with some help from the bruins in order to make their way into the pac’s championship game next week. i should say i think that needs to happen. i’ll leave it to stewart mandel or roy firestone to figure that one out. the ducks will more than likely win but i think the beavs will keep things close. take oregon st get inside the spread and perhaps even win.

11/24 stanford @ ucla. ucla favored by 1.5 points. if the trees pull this one off the pac 12 north will be a mess and you’ll probably need a degree in physics or something to straighten things out. though even if the bruins lose they’ll still be in the championship game. or that’s the thought. i guess the question for this one is, who’s squad got beat up more last week. or which team suffers more from the winners hangover. stanford, over the past few years, has been in this situation before. numerous times. the bruins? not in many a year. coach mora seems to have things well under control though. another crazed 90,000 strong bruin home crowd. i have to stay local for this game. take the bruins in a very close game.

11/24 florida @ florida st. no lines. say what you want about the SEC but florida st has, in my opinion played a tougher schedule this year given the fact florida played an FCS school and a sunbelt team the last two weeks. yes, of course, the BCS doesn’t like the ACC. so what? i don’t either most of the time. take florida st to win.

11/24 boise st. @ nevada. no lines. this game was supposed to be boise’s big game of the year. they were supposed to be undefeated at this point. the best of plans often go awry. nevada was supposed to be much better than they’ve turned out to be as well. they’re doing ok and even going bowling. or have a shot at it anyway. nevada might surprise but they haven’t done well against better teams. take boise st to win. yeah, take boise st to win. sadly, that game is next week. oops. confusion reigns. ok. i’m replacing it with miss st @ miss. ole miss favored by 1.5 points. take miss st to win and or cover the short spread. edited 11/21/12 6:22 AM

11/24 s. carolina @ clemson. clemson favored by 4 points. clemson is suffering from a semi lack of respect this year. the old ball coach and the gamecocks haven’t faired well on the road so far, a meager two for four. though they did beat wofford last week. say what? yeah. clemson is undefeated at home for the season and their only loss was against florida st. on the road. unless florida st goes down clemson will become an also ran for the the year. old ball coach or not, clemson takes the game and the win.

11/24 notre dame @ usc. no lines. the domers are touchdown jesus perfect for the season. one last game to win or lose a shot to go to the big BCS dance game. the trojans are floundering. hints of past brilliance only to be tossed out by throwing into coverage that most high school kids would recognize as being a very low percentage throw. or some dumb ass penalty to stop whatever momentum they had. coach lane is on the ropes. or should be. he needs this game to keep his job in any sane man’s world. though the trojans should just part ways with him regardless. just saying. the trojan irish game is one of the oldest rivalries in college football. a fine game to cap off rivalry saturday. just like last weeks ucla/usc game the past doesn’t really matter. it’s all about what you bring to the field on any given saturday that matters. this saturday in particular. the men of troy find themselves in a spoiler position. the question being, can lane kiffin and company get it together one more time this year? good question. however, the last four games they haven’t had it together save for the game against arizona st. plus, matt barkley will be sitting on the trojan bench with a shoulder injury. i hate to do this but, take the irish to win.

have a very happy thanksgiving everyone. be safe. be semi sane. enjoy rivalry week or what’s left of it.

jmh

2012 college football picks & predictions week 12

with 2 comments

the games last week made for an interesting weekend of college football, to say the least. the weather here didn’t pan out as hoped but clear and vaguely cold still worked for the beef bourguinon and mashed potatoes at dinner on saturday. as for my picks, i was tepid once again just winning all of my middle of the pack games. if i had stayed with my original first two picks i would have ended up on a high note. as it was i went 5 for 10 again. making my over all standings for the season, 53 for 110. i guess if i wasn’t chomping at the bit to get back to las vegas this coming sunday for thanksgiving week i’d be doing better.

speaking of doing better, usc fought off the early doldrums to beat arizona st. thus perhaps staving off lane kiffen’s head ending up on a platter. well, at least for another week. also, the tide’s undefeated run came to a screeching halt at home. one i almost called. at any rate, this insanity is for entertainment purposes only. it’s meant for fun. taking anything from here and using it to place any sort of bet would be totally stupid on your part. leave your wallet where in belongs, in your pocket, and no one gets hurt. taking care of your family comes first.

the point spreads used here are what i use to determine my wins and losses for the week. they may change by game time. it matters not. this is what i go by.

happy veterans day to all of my brothers and sisters in arms, living and dead, thanks for doing what you did or are doing right now. those who never served don’t have a clue as to our many sacrifices. all gave some. some gave all.

rock ‘n’ roll.

11/17 rutgers @ cincinnati. rutgers favored by 6.5 points. neither school has played the best schedule. although that’s generally the case with the lower tiered FBS schools. however, rutgers is once again playing some good football. and if only for the memory of one of our most underrated comedic minds, ozzie nelson, a rutgers alum, i picked this game. it might be a good one. take rutgers to win and cover the points.

11/17 northwestern @ michigan st. michigan st favored by 6.5 points. a good game and probably too bad northwestern lost to big blue last week or this game would be of more importance. just another indication of last weekends roller coaster ride. i’m actually sort of surprised the spartans are favored here as their home record isn’t very good. so, i’m taking northwestern to get inside the spread and maybe win.

11/17 alabama @ western carolina. no line. of course there’s no line because this is ridiculous. this game is a travesty. the former number one team in the land playing FCS powerhouse michelin tire changing arts and taxidermy state the week before thanksgiving. if they hadn’t fallen from grace after their loss to the aggies last week they should be run from the rankings this week for playing these guys this time of year. i don’t get it, but thankfully bama is out of the BCS picture at least for the time being. hold your nose if you dare to watch this one, kids. if the tide doesn’t throttle the jack handles it will be the biggest upset in the history of college football. hence, it’s my lock of the week. take bama to win.

11/17 stanford @ oregon. oregon favored by 21.5 points. a bunch of points. for those who don’t know why i call oregon ‘my beloved ducks’, i guess i should re-tell the tale. the ducks played ohio st in the rose bowl in 1958. ohio st was the heavy favorite but the buckeyes only won by 3 points, 10-7. i was 9 and a half years old at the time. for some reason while watching the game on TV they became ‘my’ team that new years day long ago and they have been ever since through thick and thin. shortly there after the trojans were also added to that very short list. so, there you have it. say what you want but the two biggest college games this week are pac 12 games. this one and usc/ucla. the trees play better at home which bears witness to the trees beating the beavs last week. thankfully, however, they didn’t cover the spread. my beloved ducks are seemingly on a roll toward the big dance game this year. the last time they lost to the trees was back in 09. stanford probably got lucky against the beavs last week. the ducks are a much better team. ergo, take the ducks to win and cover the spread at home in autzen. QUACK QUACK!!

11/17 california @ oregon st. oregon st favored by 21.5 points. the cal bears are more than likely in for it again this week as they are one of the crappier teams in the pac 12 this year. as an also ran team playing on the road against a very good team playing at home you can, hopefully, count on a lopsided win by the beavs in a tune-up game before the civil war game next week. take oregon st to win and cover the hefty spread.

11/17 usc @ ucla. usc favored by 4 points. crosstown rivalry weekend here in lotus land. this game means a lot as most of the kids at both schools more than likely grew up playing one another from pee wee days up thru high school. it’s all about bragging rights for the coming year in the city of lost angels. this one is the other one to watch for the week. with the bruins playing well again this year and the trojans up and down deflating hopes or dashing them you can’t really predict a winner here. lane kiffin needs to win this one if he wants to keep his job. this game and the next against the domers. this past week there’s been a few press pieces here and there about good old lane and his seemingly under handed tactics this year. the last one being the case of the under inflated balls against the ducks. lane was hired by mike ‘pendejo’ garrett the former athletic director and heisman winner. i’m sure the new guy, pat haden, might like to get rid of good old lane in order to put an end to the bad old days along with the new bad old days. just saying. he’ll have a case if the trojans drop this game and the next against the domers. that along with lane’s seemingly untoward actions this year will make it easy for pat. a close game but eventually the trojans pull it out. take usc to win and cover. FIGHT ON!!!

11/17 wake forest @ notre dame. notre dame favored by 24 points. within sight of the golden dome touchdown jesus is pretty much unstoppable. even if they are playing like the trojans on any given week. wake forest has been thumped on by every decent FBS team they’ve played this year. they get thumped on again this week as the irish tune up for the trojans on the 24th. take the irish to win and cover the points.

11/17 minnesota @ nebraska. nebraska favored by 18.5 points. the golden gophers started off the year like gangbusters. then they hit their big 10 league schedule. oops. the cornhuskers need this game for bowling purposes. perhaps the rose bowl or better if they win out the rest of the way. unbeaten at home the cornhuskers should remain that way after this game. take nebraska to win and cover.

11/17 texas tech @ oklahoma st. oklahoma st favored by 11 points. another good football game. oklahoma st would like nothing more than to spoil the red raiders season. they get a shot at it this week. home field. home crowd. take the cowboys to win and cover the points.

11/17 kansas st @ baylor. kansas st favored by 11 points. this game is here only because the wildcats are still undefeated. they should still be this coming sunday morning. this game, if you ask me, will be all about style points and staying the course to an undefeated season. then it will be up to the BCS computers, harry potter, swami vishnu, and drunken sports writers everywhere. take kansas st to win and cover the spread. .

happy veterans day. enjoy your week. as always, seared red meat and red wine pair well with college football saturdays. next week is thanksgiving and rivalry weekend. one of the better weeks of the year. plus, the wife and i will be in las vegas for five nights so next week this will be coming to you from somewhere high atop the strip. sweet. be safe. be semi sane.

jmh

2012 college football picks & predictions week 11

with 2 comments

a much better weekend than the last but things still need to swing my way a bit more. an average 5 for 10 for the week making my over all, 48 for 100. semi tepid to be sure. perhaps this week will turn things around. one thing for certain, boise st played themselves out of any shot at some sort of big dance type bowl game. better luck next year broncos. as for some of the other teams more on them later in my picks & predictions.

this mess is for entertainment purposes only. using anything dished out here and taking it to your local bookie and/or casino, legal or otherwise, and placing some sort of a wager would be supremely stupid if not insane on your part. leave your wallet where it belongs, in your pocket, and no one gets hurt. taking care of your family comes first.

the point spreads listed here are what i base my win loss record for the week. if the points change before game time, oh well. they are what they are. onward.

rock ‘n’ roll.

11/10 notre dame @ boston college. notre dame favored by 18.5 points. if there is a sloppier 9-0 team than the golden domers i need someone to point them out to me. ok. usc at times. both head coaches seem to be a deer in the headlights at all the wrong times. given the fact the irish should have waltzed all over pitt last week at home and didn’t says volumes about this weeks trip into boston and their annual big game with the other big time catholic school. i’m assuming the city of boston will have it together after sandy blew thru the east coast. the lady was a tramp. at any rate, if the domers play like they did last week they will be in for it. the question being, can the touchdown jesus coaching staff get it together against the eagles? granted, boston college is embarrassing this season but then so is/was pitt. make no mistake, this is boston colleges biggest game of the year. they will come to play and half the time the domers don’t play well on the road. even when they win. enough points here for the eagles to get inside of if they are playing well. i think they will be ready. take boston college to get inside the spread.

11/10 kansas st @ tcu. no line. probably a pretty good game. tcu has been all over the map this year and this game is their shot at some sort of respectability for the season. with respect to kansas st and starting qb klein’s injury, which sounds to me like a concussion and others as well, make this decision a difficult one. no line pretty much represents that quandary. tcu home field advantage and a kansas st heisman candidate that at this point early in the week may not play. even if klein plays another solid hit could put him back on the bench. that’s something the tcu defense is very capable of doing. all things considered take tcu to win.

11/10 texas a&m @ alabama. alabama favored by 13.5. the aggies beat up on mississippi st last week. the tide barely held on for their win against lsu. alabama is probably also lucky this is a home game for them. i would love it if the aggies beat up on the tide this saturday. someone needs to. please. if the game were in texas i’d take the aggies. it isn’t. take bama to win and cover.

11/10 mississippi st @ lsu. lsu favored by 14 points. sadly, miss st seems to be able to beat only non ranked teams or FCS schools this year. traveling to tiger country this week probably won’t change things either. take lsu to win and cover.

11/10 oregon @ california. oregon favored by 27.5. the cal bears actually beat ucla earlier this year. they also beat washington st and an FCS utah school as well. yawn. this week? no chance at beating my beloved ducks. the bears go 3 and 8 after this game with coach tedford one step closer to his exit interview. cold and rainy. perfect duck weather. take the ducks to win and cover the points. QUACK QUACK!!

11/10 arizona st @ usc. usc favored by 9.5 points. in losing the trojans showed some game against the ducks. plenty of points on the board in that losing effort at home. plus, coach lane seems to have gotten a handle on the penalty thing, at least for last week. arizona st on the other hand is not playing well at all this season. though they almost beat the bruins. the trojans need to win this one and all their remaining games to get a chance to play the ducks again on november 30 in the pac 12 championship game. a cold possibly rainy day here this saturday, well for a late fall socal saturday anyway. things could get interesting. take the trojans to win and cover the points. FIGHT ON!!

11/10 oregon st @ stanford. stanford favored by 5 points. the trees are unbeaten at home. which means this will be a very good game and one the beavs need very badly to remain in the pac 12 north hunt for number one. more cold and rain. take oregon st to at the very least get inside the spread.

11/10 w. virginia @ oklahoma st. oklahoma st favored by 7.5 points. w. virginia has lost their last 3 games. i don’t really see them turning things around this week on the road against the cowboys. both schools with identical records at 5-3. home court advantage the cowboys. take oklahoma st to win and cover.

11/10 ucla @ washington st. ucla favored by 15 points. the only 2 games the cougars have won this year were against teams worse than they are. though better things were expected with new coach mike ‘the pirate’ leach. maybe next year. if the bruins keep their head in the game and don’t look ahead to next weeks rivalry game against the trojans they should steamroll the cougars. rainy and cold. take the bruins to win and cover.

11/10 fresno st @ nevada. fresno favored by 2.5 point. let’s call this one a toss up. very interesting game here kids. one you probably shouldn’t over look with respect to how each school played san diego st. lots of points in both games and both of them very close. that being said, this one should be a shoot out. or at least that’s the hope. maybe some snow for the game. take nevada to get inside the meager points or win.

just a few waning weeks of the season left. enjoy your saturdays while you can. a bit of a change up, menu wise, for this saturday in honor of our first cold weather and hopefully some rain. beef bourguinon and red wine pair well with college football and seasonal weather. enjoy the games. be safe. be semi sane.

jmh

Written by john hauge

November 5, 2012 at 5:44 am

2012 college football picks & predictions week 10

with 2 comments

could things have gone any worse? probably. i guess i’m lucky to have come out of the weekend with my two lonely wins. very lonely wins. a wheels falling off sort of weekend for sure. a ghastly pre-halloween egging by the neighborhood kids. ok. so, 2 for 10 and dropping out of the 50% over all rating with a 43 for 90. i guess the less said about it the better. some very good math-ups coming this week. let’s get to them.

the information provided here is for entertainment purposes only. taking any information used here to your local or whatever gaming joint would be utterly stupid. last week would be a perfect example of that. do not do it. leave your money where it belongs, in your wallet, and in your pocket, and no one gets hurt.

the points used here are what i go by to determine my wins and losses for the week. the points may change by game times. it doesn’t matter to me.

rock ‘n’ roll.

11/3 texas a&m @ mississippi st. texas a&m favored by 7 points. the bulldogs didn’t fair well against alabama on the road last week. the aggies on the road clobbered auburn. ok. apples and oranges. though both schools are playing very well so far this year. texas a&m wins and covers the spread.

11/3 texas @ texas tech. texas tech favored by 7 points. despite the red raiders getting hammered by kansas st last week i think you can look for them to get back on track this week against the longhorns. texas is undefeated on the road. tech has only one loss at home against the sooners. a good game and probably a nail gnawer. take texas tech to win and cover the points.

11/3 oklahoma @ iowa st. oklahoma favored by 10.5 points. another sooners spoiler alert. two weeks in a row on the road and perhaps another oklahoma loss. the sooners may win but i’m taking iowa st to at least get inside the points.

11/3 pittsburgh @ notre dame. notre dame favored by 17 points. the golden domers go 9 and 0 this week after beating up on the panthers. yes, it’s as simple as that. take the domers to win and cover.

11/3 oregon @ usc. oregon favored by 7 points. if the trojans play anywhere near as badly as they did last week this one will be over by the end of the first quarter. the only thing you can say about their game against arizona is the coaching was atrocious. penalty after penalty killed whatever momentum they had and for my money that’s a coaching problem. it had nothing to do with the lack of depth on the defense for a change. or an offense that was clearly out of kilter with a few exceptions. adios, heisman and rose bowl. hello holiday bowl if they’re lucky. yeah, well that’s what’s on the horizon if the men of troy don’t get it together this week. my beloved ducks, on the other hand, are flying smoothly along so far. well out of range of the incoming shotgun pellets but not the BCS poll. although if the trojans of old show up this week at home, a place where they rarely lose, the ducks could be in trouble. this one is very tough pick for me. my beloved ducks and the trojans. had the trojans won last week instead of stinking up the field i’d probably go with them to upset oregon. take oregon to win and cover. QUACK QUACK!!!

11/3 alabama @ lsu. alabama favored by 10 points. hopefully, not a defensive snooze fest like last years first game between the two teams. bama faces it’s first really big test of the season. sorry michigan. i thought this would be pretty much a toss up. it isn’t. however, if lsu comes to play the tide may go out this week. plus the fact there’s the BCS bowl thing from last season as well. take lsu to at least get inside the spread and maybe win.

11/3 arizona @ ucla. no line no points. both teams coming off impressive wins. though the wildcats haven’t faired well on the road this year. a good day for lala landers to stay off the roads with usc and ucla both playing at home. take the bruins to win.

11/3 oklahoma st @ kansas st. kansas st favored by 8.5 points. if kansas st is going to lose a game this year it could be this weekend. the cowboys, like the cyclones, are a couple of my go to spoiler teams. i’m taking oklahoma st to at least make it closer than the 8.5 points. take them.

11/3 san diego st @ boise st. boise st favored by 14 points. the aztecs have a winning record but aren’t really playing very well against better programs and have lost more than they have won on the road. boise st needs to keep winning and hoping kansas st and notre dame start losing in order to make some big money bowl trip down the road. boise st rarely losses at home on the smurf turf which by the way is beginning to really show it’s age. time for the broncos to start thinking about sprucing the place up for their sojourn into the big east next year. or whenever it is. the aztecs make it a game the first half then fall by the wayside. take boise st to win and cover.

11/3 arizona st @ oregon st. oregon st favored by 5.5 points. sadly, the beavs got tripped up by the huskies last week. the sun devils lost a slug fest at home to the bruins on a last second field goal. this is potentially a very good game and one oregon st needs to win with stanford and the ducks on the horizon. thankfully, a home game for the beavers. take oregon st to win and cover.

enjoy your halloween week. as always, seared red meat and red wine pair well on college football saturday. be safe. be semi sane.

jmh

Written by john hauge

October 29, 2012 at 8:45 am

2012 college football picks & predictions week 9

with 2 comments

all things considered i probably should have stayed with my straight up picks instead of going back to using the point spreads for week 8. i suppose there is something to be said about being too busy to deal with the spreads. as it is i went 5 for 10, bringing my over all to a vaguely respectable 41 for 80. texas tech and kansas st being my best picks of the weekend. if a few other teams had scored a couple of more points i would have killed it, but then that’s why vegas is vegas. and every weekend seems to end up that way.

never forget that this thing is for entertainment purposes only. using anything here for anything other than a few laughs, at yours truly, would be a perfect example of insanity. do not do it. leave your money where it belongs, in your wallet, and nobody gets hurt. family, food, and rent are much more important.

the point spreads used here are what i use to determine my wins and losses for the week. some of the spreads may change by game times but it matters not.

rock ‘n’ roll.

10/25 clemson @ wake forest. clemson favored by 13 points. are the tigers in over their head this year? or are they really this good? their only loss was a decent showing against florida st. who was also their toughest opponent so far this season with s. carolina finishing the year for them. clemson doesn’t have the toughest schedule in the FBS this year that’s for sure. they can put some numbers on the board, but their defense can be a sieve. wake forest, on the other hand, should probably look at this game as a warm-up for the train wreck that awaits them week 11 with touchdown jesus in the shadows of the golden dome. thumping would be a mild word for that game. i veer and get ahead of myself. at any rate, an interesting way to start the football weekend. clemson wins and covers the spread.

10/26 cincinnati @ louisville. louisville favored by 4.5 points. well kids, it’s showdown time for the big kids in the big east. not the greatest of the FBS conferences but not the worst either. two decent programs that for the past few years have been well, decent enough. the biggest question being, will the cardinals remain undefeated after this one? probably. a good game to begin your saturday stuck to the couch. take louisville to win and cover the spread.

10/27 tennessee @ s. carolina. s. carolina favored by 14 points. the gamecocks disappointed last weekend by getting drubbed by florida. they are here again in order to see if the old ball coach can turn them around after starting the season on a big time roll. my feeling is he will. take s. carolina to win and cover the points.

10/27 colorado @ oregon. oregon favored by 45.5 points. the sad buffalos make what could amount to a walk down the green mile with their visit to autzen stadium this week. the ducks are smelling roses and/or the crystal football along with the blood of the buffalos. though they still need to beat the trojans twice and cross state rival oregon st for any of that to come true. well, save for the blood of the buffalos. a huge spread but if my beloved ducks want to keep making statements this season they’ll need to cover it and add some more points to it as well. take oregon to win and cover the points. QUACK QUACK!!!

10/27 texas tech @ kansas st. kansas st favored by 7.5 points. for my money one of the best games of the weekend. both schools have been impressive so far this year. can the red raiders pull off another road trip stunner again this week? stunner, in the fact they never gave up against tcu. they won’t this week as well. tech may not win but they will get inside the points. take texas tech.

10/27 usc @ arizona. usc favored by 6.5 points. after lasts weeks game matt barkley may have put himself back into the heisman hunt. though it’s a bit too early to tell if that’s the case. he’ll need to beat the ducks twice and finish the remainder of the season undefeated. along with some other folks falling by the wayside for that to happen. time tells. as for this week, he may have his hands full down in tucson. the points sort of reflect that. if the defense catches the plane, and hopefully they do, the trojans win and cover. take usc to win and cover. FIGHT ON!!

10/27 florida @ georgia. florida favored by 6 points. eastern division sec powerhouses meet. an interesting game though florida has played a somewhat better schedule. and for that reason take florida to win and cover the points.

10/27 notre dame @ oklahoma. oklahoma favored by 10 points. probably a pretty good game. oklahoma has whupped up on everyone with the exception of kansas st. the domers have played them all close with navy being their only rout. this is probably the domers stalingrad for the year with their waterloo coming the last game of the season against the trojans away from the dome. take the sooners to win and cover the spread.

10/27 mississippi st @ alabama. alabama favored by 23.5 points. neither school has played a tough schedule so far this year. if this game were a homer for the bulldogs things might go their way. make no mistake, this is mississippi state’s biggest game of the year. they have a shot at making the tide roll out. it’s too bad that probably isn’t going to happen. however, take mississippi to get inside the points.

10/27 oregon st @ washington. oregon st favored by 4 points. after beating stanford things have more or less fallen apart for the huskies. it’s also hard to figure why the beavs are only a 4 point favorite. though the huskies can spoil things on occasion. a good game and a nice nightcap. take oregon st to win and cover.

one more week in the books. the season is getting shorter and st nick will be here before you know it. as always, seared red meat and red wine pairs well with college football saturday. enjoy your week and the games. be safe. be semi sane.

jmh

Written by john hauge

October 22, 2012 at 7:12 am

2012 college football picks & predictions week 8

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another very satisfying weekend as i went 8 for 10 with my predictions. not to shabby. had iowa st and s. carolina scored a few more points i would have had a perfect 10 for 10. my over all now stands at 36 for 70. also in the mix was the notre dame goal line stand where the domers got lucky. they wouldn’t have needed that luck if several of their players hadn’t started celebrating early and had continued to play instead. ah, well. it’s all part of the game. although i did pick notre dame to win.

the beginning of this week hasn’t been as hectic as the last two weeks have been. that being the case i’m going to go back to picks with the point spreads attached. as we all know that’s an entirely different matter. the past few weeks has just gone to show that picking winners straight up is a rather simple thing. ok, at times it is. point spreads muck stuff up. though they have always been the premise of this insanity unless i don’t have the time to deal with them for a particular week. so, they’re back this week.

the first BCS poll is out and there are probably more folks pissed off than there are folks who are happy. one more year to go with that mess then we jump off the pier into uncharted waters and college football playoffs. yeah, boy. i can’t wait for that. uh huh.

what you are reading here is for entertainment purposes only. any real or imagined information taken from here and used to place any legal or otherwise monetary bet would be the definition of foolhardy. don’t do it. leave your money where it belongs, in your wallet and in your back pocket, purse, murse, under the mattress, or in a coffee can buried in the backyard.

the points used here are what i base my wins and losses on. the points may change during the week. i don’t care. i have other stuff to do.

rock ‘n’ roll.

10/18 oregon @ arizona st. oregon favored by 9 points. thursday night primetime. a nice dinner. a refreshing shower. then sit back with a glass or four of dago red and enjoy what might be a pretty good game. it was actually cold and rainy here in the southwest last week but it’s back into the 90′s this week and indian summer. my beloved ducks aren’t used to this kind of weather. hopefully, coach visor head kelly has them practicing in a very large sauna. although i don’t see the ducks having much of a problem covering the points and winning even though the points have been drifting downward. take the ducks. QUACK QUACK!!!

10/20 michigan st @ michigan. michigan favored by 10 points. all and all an interesting game with the state of michigan bragging rights tossed in for good measure. big blue will probably win the game but i think state will get inside the point spread. take michigan st.

10/20 s. carolina @ florida. florida favored by 3 points. just the home field 3 for the gators. interesting. yes, the gamecocks couldn’t quite manage a win last week, however, i’m still taking them this time around as well. take s. carolina to win or cover the points.

10/20 alabama @ tennessee. alabama favored by 20.5 points. the tide somehow or another seems impressive enough to remain on top of all the polls and the first BCS deal as well. they’ve scored some points this year and so has tennessee even when losing. i don’t think this will be the week the tide goes out. take alabama to win and cover.

10/20 iowa st @ oklahoma st. oklahoma st favored by 14 points. i don’t quite get the line on this game. iowa st will at the very least get inside the points. take the cyclones.

10/20 lsu @ texas a&m. lsu favored by 3 points. another tough one for the tigers. myself as well. take the aggies to cover the spread or even win.

10/20 byu @ notre dame. notre dame favored by 13.5 points. this is generally an interesting game if only for the religious overtones. it would be more interesting this year if byu was playing better football. say like the domers, for example, which has also included a wee bit o the irish luck. tree fans get over it. if the irish play every down and don’t start celebrating early again they should cover and win. take notre dame.

10/20 texas tech @ tcu. texas tech favored by 2.5 points. the red raiders are seemingly on a roll. they faired well last weekend in their big upset over w. virginia. one i predicted by the way. the bandwagon/stagecoach rolls on. take texas tech to win and or cover the points.

10/20 kansas st @ w. virginia. w. virginia favored by 3 points. another point spread i’m having trouble with. i guess even at number 4 undefeated kansas st can’t get any respect even with the fact w. virginia got pounded last week. take kansas st to cover the points or win.

10/20 utah @ oregon st. oregon st favored by 10 points. here’s a point spread that probably should be higher. perhaps even a bunch more. i’ll take this as it stands. coach riley and the beaves keep on keeping on. take oregon st to win and cover the spread.

week 8 in the books. enjoy your week and come day remember, seared red meat and red wine pair well with the games. be safe. be semi sane.

jmh

Written by john hauge

October 16, 2012 at 3:59 am

2012 college football picks & predictions week 7

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another semi satisfying week again last weekend with a 6 for 10 outing. making my overall now a somewhat better 28 for 60. respectability one week at a time. just like the last two weeks this one proves to be a busy one with a day trip into downtown lotus land this morning and another run on tuesday down to the temecula wine country. so, with all this running around i won’t have time to deal with the points thing. yes, even with the out of control gas prices here in the great state of chaos and confusion stuff still needs to be taken care of. regardless. with that being said, i won’t be using point spreads again this week. seeing as how well i’ve done the past two weeks without them i may abandon the points altogether for the rest of the season. though i haven’t decided that as yet. time tells.

this insanity is for entertainment purposes only and using anything you read here for legal or otherwise gambling purposes would be folly at best. keep your wallet where it belongs, in your pocket and nobody gets hurt.

rock ‘n’ roll.

10/13 louisville @ pittsburgh. louisville is undefeated. ah yes, the reality of the big east. a decent program i suppose and a team i haven’t visited here this year. even though pitt beat one of the virginia’s a week or two ago take louisville to continue to go undefeated.

10/13 texas @ oklahoma. oklahoma surprised me last week. good for them. i’m going to go out on a limb and hope the sooners surprise again this week.
take oklahoma to win.

10/13 kansas st @ iowa st. this should prove to be one of the better games of the weekend. in the best of times and the worst of times of mice and men if things go as planned the cyclones rain on state’s parade. take iowa st.

10/13 alabama @ missouri. the crimson tide rolls on. take bama to win. ROLL TIDE!!

10/13 w. virginia @ texas tech. make no mistake, w. virginia can stick some points on the board. the problem being, can their defense stop you from doing the same? not this week. take the red raiders to make a comeback after last weeks miss.

10/13 oregon st @ byu. coach riley and the beaves still flying in heady territory. byu has been all over the place so far this season. take oregon st to win.

10/13 stanford @ notre dame. possibly another good game. domers playing well along with the trees. if the game were in stanford i’d pick the trees. it isn’t. take the golden domers to win.

10/13 fresno st @ boise st. team smurf turf is hard to beat at home. even though new mexico gave boise a scare a few weeks ago and fresno is a better team i’m taking boise st to win.

10/13 usc @ washington. the trojans occasionally have trouble with the huskies on their home turf. i doubt they’ll let that happen this year. no heisman for matt. it’s all about the pac 12 title now. take usc to win. FIGHT ON!!

10/13 s. carolina @ lsu. i’m not impressed with lsu. but apparently others are. s. carolina is playing better football. a tight game but not a defensive snooze fest. take the old ball coach and the gamecocks to win.

another one in the books. as always, seared red meat and red wine always pair well for game days. be safe. be semi sane.

jmh

Written by john hauge

October 8, 2012 at 4:02 am

2012 college football picks & predictions week 6

with 2 comments

week 5 turned out to be my best week of the season so far with a sweet 7 for 10. something i’m happy to take into week 6. my over all now stands at 22 for 50. a borderline respectable record. last week’s results just go to show that picking winners against the spread is no easy feat. something i’ve said over and over again. i’m also quite certain that had i gone my usual route i wouldn’t have done as well considering just how close a number of the games were.

i’m just picking winners again this week. no point spreads. i don’t have the time once again. while in las vegas last week we learned a piece of property, more like an albatross around my neck, and party house i own had finally sold after far too long on the market. in the end, a very good thing but it sold for no where near what it was worth in the old days. i digress. the sale is a cash deal and escrow will close this week. i’ve got way too much to do in the next few days clearing the joint out in the 100 degree plus heat of an early socal fall. hence, just winners again with no spread involved this week. maybe things will settle down for me by week 7.

now that we’re into week 6 the fighting road kill tech schools are back to playing amongst themselves for the most part. although picking the 10 games was still not easy as there are a number of good games coming down the pike this weekend. with any luck at all things will have cooled off for me and i’ll be able to enjoy a day on the couch watching them this saturday as i hardly saw any of the games last weekend.

this mess is for entertainment purposes only. taking anything seen here to any sort of betting establishment legal or otherwise and using it to place a bet would be incredibly asinine. leave your money in your wallet where it belongs and no one gets hurt. taking care of yourself and your family is more important.

rock ‘n’ roll.

10/4 usc @ utah. usc is playing well again after their loss to the trees. utah is only playing so so. the men of troy should have no problem taking out the utes. if they don’t i’m certain matt barkely will be very sorry he came back this year. take the trojans. FIGHT ON!!!

10/6 boise st @ southern mississippi. team smurf turf travels to the deep south saturday where the golden eagles aren’t playing very well at all this year. boise may run into a bit of trouble though. new mexico played them very tough last week and boise came no where near covering the spread. no spreads again this week so take boise st to win.

10/6 lsu @ florida. i’m not impressed by lsu so far this year and their early season schedule. however, florida’s isn’t much better. take florida to win.

10/6 iowa st @ tcu. probably one of the more interesting games this week. if it were being played in iowa the cyclones might have a shot. it isn’t. take tcu to win.

10/6 oklahoma @ texas tech. possibly another good game. the sooners will probably be favored. take the red raiders to win in an upset. on another note, if you have the time and interest please visit: http://www.vietnam.ttu.edu if you noodle around you can find some of my donated stuff there.

10/6 washington st @ oregon st. the beaves in some pretty heady territory. good for them and coach riley. the magic continues. take oregon st to win.

10/6 georgia @ s. carolina. another solid game here, kids. i’m taking the old ball coach and the home team here. you should too.

10/6 w. virginia @ texas. in reality neither school is that impressive so far this year. take texas to win.

10/6 nebraska @ ohio st. another of those reality bites deals here. i’m taking the cornhuskers to win.

10/6 washington @ oregon. the huskies beat the trees last weekend. are they that good or was it just a case of the trees counting on an upset headline getting them thru the rest of the season? maybe or maybe not. the thing is they have no shot this week. my beloved ducks may not cover whatever spread there is but they will win. count on it. take oregon to win. QUACK QUACK!!!

there you go. enjoy your week and the up coming games. i’ll will be especially with that escrow check in hand. as always, seared red meat and red wine pair well with college football. be safe. be semi sane.

jmh

Written by john hauge

October 1, 2012 at 4:50 am

2012 college football picks & predictions week 5

with 2 comments

eddie catalina had weathered worse weekends but nothing quite like the past one. in some sort of semi delusional death wish he’d taken his car and rent money and bet it all on 10 of the worst college football picks imaginable. sure, some of them looked good and even made sense in that death wish sort of way. but he knew he was in big trouble by mid afternoon on saturday.

the odd thing was he really didn’t care. the third floor walk up in the eastern part of downtown los angeles and his 10 year old car had lost whatever luster was left or ever had been there. things had tumbled out of control and he was resigned to what would come soon enough.

another strange thing was he didn’t even have the car or rent money anymore. after losing the game that tilted the deal below what would mean busting out even he had taken the car and rent money and blown it all and then some. that was even before the total disaster became, oh so apparent. all the money he had was blown on a bizarre drunken whore mongering night in the illegal after hours mexican ‘nightclubs’ in his neighborhood. a long night that found him drunk, alone and asleep at his kitchen table around noon sunday.

the pounding on the door woke him up. it took a second or two to realize it was morning, the sun was up, and he was still drunk. very drunk. stumbling to the door he opened it. two thugs pushed their way inside. the larger of the two shut the door and stood by it.

the smaller one spoke.

so where were you last night? it looks like getting drunk on your sorry ass. and that’s no excuse. there are no excuses. you know the rules. payment is due on all bets at midnight sharp. pay up now plus another $1,000 in vig for our trouble. don’t fucking piss don vincenzo off any more than he already is.

standing there in his under ware, head down looking at the floor he thought, good thing i’m still drunk. maybe the broken bones won’t hurt so bad.

broken bones or maybe. just maybe. yes, a mad hangover haze grab for the rusty but loaded .357 under the three day old newspaper on the table. for you see, as dawn had broke that sunday morning, lonely broken drunken dreams made him pull it out of the bottom of his old army duffel bag. he’d passed out before he could use it. now maybe. just maybe. he could make use of it for some other purpose.

the smaller man slapped him to the floor. eddie used the table to help himself to his feet. his hand slipped under the paper. he gripped the pitted and splintered walnut pistol butt. he spun around firing. his finger pulling the trigger as fast as he could. sound, smoke, and the smell of cordite filled the small room.

the two mobsters lay there bleeding their last seconds of life out onto the cracked yellowed linoleum floor. eddie catalina’s troubles had only just begun.

(if you’re interested in reading the entire, ‘eddie catalina’, saga you can find it here on this site in the categories section.)

poor eddie. that could happen to you if you were using my pathetic football picks for any of your betting stupidity this year. another dismal 3 for 10 last week making my over all 15 for 40. my worst week so far and drifting even further away from 50%. the good thing being there are another 8 weeks left in the season. surely i’ll hit a few 7 or 8 for 10′s down the road. right? sure.

remember this mess is for entertainment purposes only. taking whatever you can from here and using it to place some sort of bet with whoever would be total insanity on your part. don’t do it. keep your money where it belongs, in your wallet, and nobody gets hurt.

no points or spreads this week. family day on sunday then off to las vegas early tuesday morning preclude any of that stuff. by not doing the points it may even help my over all for a change. yes, i’ve done this before, at least one week during the season when life gives me more things to do than writing this insanity.

rock ‘n’ roll.

9/27 stanford @ washington. let’s see. the trees beat usc and the huskies played doormat portland st. possibly an interesting game. take the trees to win.

9/28 hawaii @ byu. norm chow heads back into byu country as a new head coach for a visit to one of his former employers. sadly, i honestly don’t think he has a chance to win this game. even with byu’s poor showing against boise last week. take byu to win.

9/29 minnesota @ iowa. minnesota is undefeated. imagine that. of course, a couple of the wins were against fighting road kill state. iowa isn’t playing well at all. the golden gophers stay undefeated. take em.

9/29 ohio st @ michigan st. the spartans didn’t play well against the domers last week in domerland. ohio st has played only one real FBS team this year. and that was cal, whom they barely beat. home field home team. probably an upset win. take michigan st.

9/29 boise st @ new mexico. boise st should win this one but the lobos might make it interesting. take boise st to win.

9/29 tcu @ smu. i picked this game because it might be a good one. meaning a close one. semi sort of rivalry going here. tcu playing their usual good ball. smu in the doldrums sorta like my picks. the mustangs step it up this week. even so take tcu to win.

9/29 texas @ oklahoma st. thus far okie st has been unimpressive. at least texas has played FBS schools so far this year. maybe not the best of the FBS but not huey, dewey, and louie state either. the cowboys may step it up for this semi sort of state rivalry thing. none the less, take the longhorns to win.

9/29 mississippi @ alabama. ole miss is another school playing well so far. if this were a home game for them and depending on the points i’d probably take them. the reality is it isn’t a home game and i’m not doing points this week. take bama to win. ROLL TIDE!!

9/29 oregon st @ arizona. arizona got whupped big time last week by the ducks. the beaves prevailed in the heat against the bruins. call me crazy. take oregon st to win.

9/29 oregon @ washington st. pirate mike got beat by winless colorado last week. let’s see if he makes a decent showing against the ducks on saturday. even if he does the cougars won’t win. take oregon to win. QUACK QUACK !!

another week in the books. seared red meat and red wine are always a good idea for college football saturday. enjoy the games and try to remain sane. enjoy your week as well. i know we will. it’s a las vegas bon appetit week. woohoo!!

jmh

Written by john hauge

September 24, 2012 at 3:59 am

2012 college football picks & predictions week 4

with 2 comments

after another sub par week i’m beginning to wonder if i’m ever going to make it out of the doldrums this season. eventually i’m sure i will. this week maybe? last weeks games were the all to similar 4 for 10 deal. leaving me with an over all of 12 for 30 heading into this week. things could be worse or better as i’m still hovering around the drain and looking at fifty percent. ah well. just one more week of teams unable to cover the spread or kickers who can’t make a field goal. or not seeing what should have been obvious regarding stanford and sc.

one would think that by week 4 finding 10 games to pick would be a simpler matter than the previous weeks were. well, pilgrims, think again. the majority of schools are still playing pickpocket tech or fries with that burger? state. it’s a sad thing indeed. i prefer the old days when playing the sisters of the poor was only allowed like once every four years. now teams like alabama play at least 3 of them during the year and take a week off as well. then at the end of the year gloat about being ranked number one or whatever. it’s hard to stay focused and interested with all that absurdity going down. which is probably why i spent the weekend engrossed with stephen king’s, “11/22/63″, instead of paying attention to the games. sue me. i digress. i know i belabor this point but, if this current state of let’s play captain kangaroo tech keeps up college football will see TV’s going dark on saturday afternoons. count on it. spin doctors and TV talking heads can say what they want but it doesn’t change anything at all. only a fool would care if alabama/ohio st/texas et al defeat wolfgang puck culinary arts tech 63-0 three or four times a season. it’s meaningless and a waste of everyone’s time. just sayin’.

remember this mess is for entertainment purposes only. don’t go running off to your local branch of the bent nose wise guys and try to make a killing using whatever golden dust you can pan from here. that would be asinine on various levels. don’t do it. leave your money where it belongs, in your wallet, and no one gets hurt.

the odds posted here are what i use to determine my wins and losses. they may change before game time. i don’t care.

rock ‘n’ roll.

9/20 byu @ boise st. boise favored by 7.5 points. i’m a bit surprised the broncos are favored here. though byu’s kicker missed several shots at winning their game last week. sorta shades of boise st last year. at any rate, smurf turf territory and boise rarely loses at home. though they may not always cover the spread. a story that started last year. byu may surprise. none the less, take boise st to win and cover.

9/22 oregon st @ ucla. ucla favored by 11.5 points. ucla in a new heady era under coach mora, 3 and 0 so far and in the top 25. something we and they haven’t seen in ages. still summer hot here in the land of the lalas this week and a 12:30 game time. i may have to start hydrating now just so i can watch it and not have to call 911 by the 4th quarter. the beaves have had 2 weeks to get ready for this one. they’re probably still flying high after taking down a not as nearly good wisconsin team as everybody thought. the heat takes it’s toll on both squads. take the bruins who’ve been living in our hottest summer in 3 or 4 years to win and cover.

9/22 missouri @ south carolina. south carolina favored by 10 points. the old ball coach has the gamecocks playing some good ball even if two of their wins are against a couple of borderline sisters of the poor schools. vanderbilt gave them a scare in week 1 as well. the gamecocks roll. take them to win and cover the spread.

9/22 colorado @ washington st. washington st favored by 18 points. colorado may go winless this year. pirate mike’s first game against a pac 12 school making it their first league win as well. take washington st to win and cover the points.

9/22 california @ usc. usc favored by 16 points. in losing the bears played better than expected against ohio st last week. the trojans continued their losing streak against the trees while also continuing their run not covering the spread for the year. a sad thing to be sure. if the offensive line shows up for the game the trojans should win but take the bears to get inside the points. FIGHT ON!!

9/22 michigan @ notre dame. notre dame favored by 7 points. the domers are like boise, hardly losing within sight of the dome. well, if they have any sort of team that is. big blue goes down in south bend. take take touchdown jesus to win and cover.

9/22 kansas st @ oklahoma. oklahoma favored by 16 points. keeping it simple here. take the sooners to win and cover.

9/22 clemson @ florida st. florida st favored by 14 points. so far this season the seminoles are running up some points. no reason they shouldn’t continue to do so this week. take florida st to win and cover the spread.

9/22 utah @ arizona st. arizona st favored by 7.5 points. both schools first game of the season for league play. the game is pretty much a toss up. take the sun devils to win and cover.

9/22 arizona @ oregon. oregon favored by 23.5 points. my beloved ducks finally managed to cover the spread last week for i think the first time this year. too bad they weren’t one of my ten teams for the week. the wildcats can score some points. take arizona to get inside the spread. they may not win but they will do that. take em.

week 4 in the books. a mostly favorite weekend but then some weeks are like that. as always seared red meat and red wine pair well with college football. enjoy your week. try and stay sane or at least semi sane watching the games. week 5 will be out next monday morning as we head to las vegas early on tuesday.

jmh

Written by john hauge

September 18, 2012 at 3:22 am

2012 college football picks & predictions week 3

with 4 comments

astute regular readers will notice this is a day early. good for you. the reason being is i broke a tooth last night and i have no idea what sort of pain and suffering the dentist will bring this week. at the moment the tooth doesn’t hurt, however, i’m sure that will change when i visit my dentist today. with any luck at all things will be back to normal next week.

in some sort of a deja vu all over again madness, last week’s trip into the college football world resembled my first week’s trip into the heart of darkness. right down to the trojans and ducks not covering the spread. if they had and michigan as well it would have been a pretty good week. so, once again a stinky 4 for 10 making my over all a paltry 8 for 20. not good. maybe things will change this week. uh huh.

picking my 10 games for this week was just as hard as it was for the first two weeks of the season. we are in week 3 and the ducks are playing tennessee tech. what is going on here? is there no end to let’s play the southwestern dental hygienist college and taxidermy tech for half the season? i guess not. after all it’s the brave new world of college football. sorta like tee ball and soccer for kids. there are no losers just winners. everybody is a winner. uh huh. right. the collectivists are winning. but i digress.

be that as it may, the important thing to remember is this is for entertainment only. using anything you find here and taking that information and using it for legal or illegal betting purposes would be insane. your family would probably have grounds to stick you someplace well padded for one of those 72 hour observation deals if you do. don’t do it. keep your money where it belongs, in your wallet. you have more important things to do with your cash. food and rent come to mind among other things.

point spreads seen here are what i go by when determining my wins and losses. they may change over the course of the week but i don’t care. they are what they are. let’s do this thing.

rock ‘n’ roll.

9/15 wake forest @ florida st. florida st favored by 24.5 points. this will be florida state’s first real test of the season. yeah, ok. wake forest too. i’m not real sure just why the noles are in the top 10 considering who’ve they’ve played so far this year. yes, of course, excuse me. a bunch of points. what a way to start the week. more kool-aid drinking or is it arsenic? take florida st to win and cover the points.

9/15 tcu @ kansas. tcu favored by 21 points. charlie weis, in case you’ve missed it, has a new coaching gig with the kansas jay hawks. it should be interesting or maybe not. after all, kansas isn’t kansas st, toto. another one with too many points. take tcu to win and cover the spread.

9/15 alabama @ arkansas. no line. a toss up at the moment. bama beat michigan in week one. the razorbacks lost last week to the sisters of the poor. hopefully, that drops them out of the top 10 or even the top 25. if i ran things i would guarantee it. the tide also play western carolina on november 17th. excuse me? you play some junior college squad the weekend before thanksgiving. and you’re numero uno? i’m getting a bit ahead of myself here. one of those interstate rivalry deals. at least there aren’t any points to cover. take the tide to win straight up. ROLL TIDE!!

9/15 florida @ tennessee. tennessee favored by 2.5 points. this might be an interesting game even though florida has hardly been impressive so far. along with tennessee playing a couple of schools no one has ever heard of. what the hell am i thinking? i should send this game to the scrap heap where it belongs but i’m not. further evidence for doing that is florida for some reason is actually a top 25 team. take tennessee and the home field advantage. volunteers win and cover.

9/15 usc @ stanford. usc favored by 10 points. the men of troy should have no trouble winning this one. the main point, of course, will be: can they cover the spread for the first time this year? a secondary point will be: are the trees once again playing the role of spoilers? a role they can be pretty good at playing. i have to take usc because at some point they will win and cover the damn spread. hopefully it will be this week. FIGHT ON!!

9/15 notre dame @ michigan st. michigan st favored by 3.5 points. my first time this season with the golden domers. who last week had a hard time with purdue. yeah, that purdue. so what do we have here? two top 25 teams(amazingly enough) and probably a good game. thankfully a home game for the spartans. michigan st wins and covers the points.

9/15 utah st @ wisconsin. wisconsin favored by 14 points. yeah, wisconsin again. i need a lock for the week. though maybe playing at home will inspire them to play like they are a top ranked football team. (i have several bridges in new york city for sale if any of you are interested.) utah st is playing like one but they aren’t on any ones radar. yet. maybe they will be after this week. time tells. the badgers may win but utah st gets inside the points.

9/15 texas @ mississippi. texas favored by 10.5 points. texas is playing some ok ball. even beating a couple of my odd couple teams the first two weeks of the season. ole miss on the other hand was playing around with a couple of sisters of the poor holden caulfield fencing tech schools. mississippi at home against one of the perennial big boys is tempting to say the least. i like ole miss in this one. take mississippi to get inside the spread.

9/15 byu @ utah. byu favored by 3.5 points. if utah had beaten utah st last week you could possibly say this was for the state championship. however, that probably isn’t going to happen until byu plays utah st on october the 5th. pretty much a toss up. byu is on a mission, no pun intended, take them to win and cover.

9/15 houston @ ucla. ucla favored by 17.5 points. houston is a wreck just 2 weeks into the season. they give some guy one game as offensive co-ordinator then fired him and send him on his way after he loses his first gme. makes sense to me. if only ucla had done that with slick rick. or touchdown jesus with charlie weis. i digress. what’s interesting here is it looks like coach mora has the bruins looking and playing like some dick vermeil team from way back when. that’s fine by me. as it’s a good thing when both lotus land teams are playing some good football. houston beat the bruins last year. that isn’t going to happen this year. a semi vaguely large number of points to cover but i think the bruins will win and do just that. take them.

week 3 picks are on the books. maybe this week is the end of the fighting sisters of the poor and their super natural hold on college football. or maybe not. just remember seared red meat and red wine always pair well with college football saturday. be safe. be semi sane. enjoy the games.

jmh

Written by john hauge

September 10, 2012 at 5:51 am

2012 college football picks & predictions week 2

with 4 comments

i think hurricane isaac may have slopped through here last week along with the middle part of the country. i won my first three games then took a header and ended up underwater. ah well, the joys of week one college ball. although if the trojans had managed to score just one more point i would have evened out. as it were i went 4 for 10. not very good but all things considered i did pick more winning teams than losers. however, most of the winners i did pick couldn’t manage to cover the points. a sad thing to be sure. as always, remember the main point of this mess is for entertainment purposes only. plus, the fact i’m liable to say something most other places won’t or can’t due to whatever reason(s). at any rate, it’s early in the season and if the past is any barometer to the future you can count on me hitting an 8 for 10 or 7 for 10 a couple of times this season. or doing worse than last week. capisco? think irreverent, or as some may, irrelevant entertainment.

with any luck and or mojo at all i should be hovering around 51-52% at the end of the season. maybe better. time tells. that being said, i read last week some betting line point spread maven touting they had the best percentage against the spread last year and they were at around 62%. for an old burnt out wreck i guess i do ok. yeah, sure, watch as the jinx is now set, off, and running.

as for week 2, it was just as difficult to pick the ten games as it was for week 1. due to the fact way too many FBS schools use the first two weeks of the season as fall training. a sorry practice if there ever was one. though on occasion the heidi klum junior college and parking lot attendants academy does throw an FBS school a floating knuckle curve ball. ask penn st about that one. or navy for that matter. yeah, ok, the domers aren’t in that category as yet. i digress.

digressing even further, once again, this is for entertainment purposes only and being such means using anything you glean here shouldn’t be taken to any sort of sports book legal or otherwise. it would be dumb on numerous levels. don’t do it. keep your money where it belongs in your wallet and no one gets hurt. i use the odds posted here to determine my wins and losses for the week. i don’t care if they change during the week.

rock ‘n’ roll.

9/7 utah @ utah st. utah favored by 7 points. week 2 kicks off with one of the better rivalries which used to be left to the end of the season. ah, the brave new world of college ball. hang on kids it will only get worse down the road. at least utah st scheduled one of the better FCS programs for week one. ok. a good match-up here and one worth watching. i think this one will be closer than it looks. take utah st to cover the points and maybe win.

9/8 iowa st @ iowa. iowa favored by 3.5 points. another traditional rivalry funneled into the beginning of the season. i don’t get it. iowa st had a better week than iowa last week and it was against a better team than iowa played. toss up here. take the cyclones to beat the spread or even win.

9/8 air force @ michigan. michigan favored by 21.5 points. granted the airedales (for the uninitiated airedales was a term used during the vietnam war by the other services when speaking unofficially about the air force. sorta like ‘squid’ or ‘jarhead’. a term of endearment.) didn’t play bama last week but they did win. michigan should do somewhat better this week agains the falcons. or that’s the hope and i’m sure that thought is being bandied about in the coaches locker room in ann arbor. michigan rights the ship this saturday. take wolverines to win and cover.

9/8 usc @ syracuse. usc favored by 26.5 points. syracuse had no trouble losing to northwestern last week. usc had trouble finding me one more lousy point. usc may also be heading toward another date with ncaa trouble. sadly, probably due to a couple of exes (petey and his boss, the ever stupid, mike g) and kids who are dumber than the two of them. or maybe think they won’t get caught. regardless. it’s some of that trouble down the road stuff. good luck pat haden. thankfully less points to cover than last weeks game. take the trojans to win and cover the points. FIGHT ON!!!

9/8 wisconsin @ oregon st. wisconsin favored by 7.5 points. the beavers first game and they just might have a chance here as wisconsin barely survived against northern iowa in week 1. gone are the heady days of the brothers rodgers for oregon st. in their stead it’s trouble in beaver town. or maybe not with only this meager spread. take the beavers to get inside the points and or even win.

9/8 fresno st @ oregon. oregon favored by 34 points. good luck bulldogs. you are gonna need all you can scrounge up. my beloved ducks need to cover the spread or this will be another possibly nasty weekend for myself. the ducks take care of business this saturday. take oregon to win and cover the spread even as large as it is. QUACK QUACK!!!

9/8 washington @ lsu. lsu favored by 23.5 points. i guess the question for me would be, who’s more annoying? les miles or nick saban? probably to close to call. at any rate, the huskies have a quality qb and receiver in price and williams. it’s another one of these, can the underdog line do the job both ways deals? tough call for me here. the pac 12 homer in me says go for it but reality stares back. screw it. take the huskies to beat the spread.

9/8 nebraska @ ucla. nebraska favored by 4.5 points. weather geeks are predicting 100 degree temps for this weekend here in the valleys. not that the huskers aren’t used to high heat. at least it’s a late afternoon game. things may or may not have cooled down by then. i hope the huskers enjoy their trip to the rose bowl. it’s the only time this year (including the time around new year’s day) they’ll be playing in pasadena. pretty much a toss up. the bruins find a way to cover the points and possibly win.

9/8 new mexico @ texas. texas favored by 37.5 points. after last weeks win for the lobos and new head coach bob davie i had to pick this one. on the other side of the coin if i had gone with wyoming i’d have had another winner. would’ve. could’ve. should’ve. i’m thinking this might be a good game and one i hope is on TV someplace other than the longhorn network. i think this game will tell us if coach davie has the lobos up and ready to play football after several years in the doldrums and as cellar dwellers. more kool-aid drinking here. glug glug. take new mexico to somehow manage to get inside the spread.

9/8 oklahoma st @ arizona. oklahoma st favored by 13.5 points. if it’s going to be 100 here then it will likely be 150 southeast of here over in tucson. at least game time is 7:30, just after sunset, temps should be in the high 80′s or low 90′s. sweet. the wildcats aren’t savannah that’s for sure and hopefully they give the cowboys a run for their money. all that being said take oklahoma st to win and cover.

week 2′s picks are in the books. try and enjoy your week. i think i’ll spend mine out at the barbie again roasting up some more hatch, new mexico, green chiles. as always, red meat and red wine work well together on game days. play it smart. take it easy. enjoy this weeks games.

jmh

Written by john hauge

September 4, 2012 at 4:30 am

2012 college football picks & predictions week 1

with 3 comments

the college football season has finally arrived albeit somewhat bruised and out of breath. but it is here and i’m somewhat excited albeit somewhat bruised and out of breath myself. we got a playoff but it’s two years down the road and then we’re stuck with it for 14 years even if it blows chunks the size of texas or the powers that be screw it up somehow or another. that’s something you can probably count on. just sayin’. at any rate, i’ve touched on that stuff in other posts.

as usual, i’m picking 10 games for this weekend and every week this season as well. also pretty much par is the fact it isn’t easy finding 10 games the first week of the season that are worth the time and effort to watch. much less come up with a pick/prediction due to the fact a good portion of the FBS schools are playing the sisters of the poor and disenfranchised junior college teams. yeah, they just keep on keeping on doing that. one of the reasons they trotted out for no playoffs, ‘we just don’t have enough time.’ well, you would if you stopped playing those high school squads. the FCS managed to add even more teams and games to their playoff system that goes on for several weeks. erg, the first week and the second paragraph and i’ve already veered onto the far shoulder barely missing oncoming traffic.

ok. so. 10 games. i pick the winners based on the point spreads generated by the point spread generators. not an easy thing but i plod on and have for several if not more seasons. i use the points here to determine winners even though they might change before game times. i don’t care. the most important thing to be aware of here is this adventure is for fun only. capisco? traipsing off to your local branch of the goodfella association or off to vegas or off shore to place some sort of bet using my picks/predictions here would be described as insanity of the highest order. don’t do it. ever. even though later in september i’ll be staying out in that desert mecca for a few days. but that’s apples and oranges. you have bills to pay and families to feed. betting on college football games will make it difficult to take care of those priorities. first things first. always remember that. with that being said, let’s do this thing.

rock ‘n’ roll.

8/30 ucla @ rice. ucla favored by 15.5 points. you have to pick this one with the new coach and all. especially after he tossed the murderer bon mot about a few weeks ago. yeah, ucla is a nice campus over on the west side and usc is on the east side in the valley of death kinda and it is a semi sorta ‘west side story’ deal with the schools. good old coach mora tossed the first hand grenade of the season in the war of the city of lost angels. a new coach and yet another new qb for the bruins. who are supposed to be over the slick rick era and off to the races once again. they shouldn’t have a problem with rice. who is believe it or not an FBS school or at least was the last time i checked. take the bruins to win and cover the spread.

8/30 washington st @ byu. byu favored by 13.5 points. another new coach, mike leech, takes the reins and is supposedly taking the cougars places. which would be a good thing since things have gone sideways since the days of mike price. time tells. at any rate, probably a good football game. one you ought to watch if you can. despite pirate mike and state take byu to win and over.

8/31 boise st @ michigan st. michigan st favored by 7 points. the first really big game of the season. has boise st reloaded? will the boys of the smurf turf keep on rolling only to be disssed in the end by the lame duck BCS bozos? another time tells story but we should know a little more after this one is over. we’ll know more about both schools. stay tuned. this is a tough one to pick given boise’s track record over the past few years and the spartans are well, the spartans. boise st may not win but take them to at least get inside the spread.

9/1 clemson @ auburn. clemson favored by 3 points. a game i don’t have much interest in other than the fact i had to find my 10 games. although maybe auburn will play spoiler again this year. the game is basically a toss up and unless things go really bad for one or the other it will be close. auburn will surprise, take them.

9/1 hawaii @ usc. usc favored by 39.5 points. the trojans begin the year welcoming norm chow back to the coliseum. his first visit back as a head coach. more questions to be answered here as well kids. or that’s the hope. the men of troy off to the top of the charts as it were. coach lane recruiting like a madman even with his sanctions leftover from coach petey’s tenure. will coach norm succeed like june jones hawaiians did? a game to watch if available in your area. yes, it’s a barrel of points. however, if the men of troy are serious about a national championship season they need to roll the numbers up. drink the kool-aid and take the trojans to win and cover. FIGHT ON!!!!

9/1 michigan @ alabama. alabama favored by 13 points. another big game for the first week. big blue heads south. is brady hoke another general sherman? highly doubtful but good old boy nick saban rubs me the wrong way. yeah, well sue me. pundits are split as to whether the trojans or bama will end the season at number one and in the BCS bowl champ deal. that is a semi sort of long way off. at least both teams scheduled decent opponents the first week of the football year. i love the tide but don’t care for the coach. a good game for sure. if the game were in ann arbor michigan might have a chance. it isn’t. take bama to win and cover. ROLL TIDE!!

9/1 wyoming @ texas. texas favored by 29.5 points. another one of those filler games in search of my ten. although the cowboys went 8-5 last year and had one of their best finishes in awhile. texas should walk all over them but wyoming might keep it interesting. i hope they do. none the less take texas to win and cover.

9/1 oklahoma @ utep. oklahoma favored by 30.5 points. i probably should have avoided this game and gone with the southern mississippi game instead. oh well. the sooners should take this one to the bank. i doubt utep will keep it interesting. bank on the sooners to win and cover.

9/1 arkansas st @ oregon. oregon favored by 35.5. my beloved ducks take on one of those borderline schools. a school no one knew existed a few years ago other than the kids who went there, their parents, the staff, and a few parole officers. how things have changed. one thing that i’m quite certain hasn’t is the atmosphere at auzten stadium. the team from arkansas has never experienced anything close to what his game will bring. the only way to stop the rabid homer crowd is to score and score often while keeping the ducks from doing so. yeah, like that’s going to happen. pundits are calling arkansas st the next boise st. a tall order for sure and it will take a lot more for me to jump on that stagecoach. the ducks steamroll. take the ducks to cover and win even with the new phil knightmare duds. QUACK QUACK!!!

9/1 southern miss @ nebraska. nebraska favored by 20 points. a late scratch by myself brings this game into play replacing san diego st @ washington. sure why not? if the golden eagles can handle both sides of the line they have a shot at this one. probably a good game to watch. i’m taking southern miss to at least get inside the 20 points. you should too.

there you go. the first week of the shortest sporting season, college football. enjoy the games. don’t get too crazy. just remember seared red meat and red wine pairs well with college football. i think i’ll spend the pre-game week roasting hatch green chiles, along with red, orange, and yellow bell peppers out on the barbie and drinking dago red while i’m waiting.

jmh

Written by john hauge

August 26, 2012 at 5:10 am

2012 college football season preview

with 2 comments

we’re less than a month away from a new year of college football. the off season has been anything but bland to say the least. we got playoffs during the down time but not until two years from now in 2014. god forbid anything should change quickly. though when bringing punishment upon college players who were in junior high school when things went sideways at penn st doesn’t take as long. i guess the NCAA wanted to look like they were relevant and doing something or anything. schools continued to jump ship and move around the country making airlines rub their collective hands over someone getting the job of moving teams across the entire breadth of the land once a week for 12 weeks. makes me wish i was in the airline business or a league commissioner as the SEC/Big 12 get $80 million when their bowl game comes into play. talk about winning the lottery.

yeah, lots of stuff went down the last 9 months. including plenty of players and coaches getting arrested and thrown off squads as well. i’m sure we’ll see more of that action in the weeks to come. it makes an old heart grow even fonder for the olden days of college ball. i’ve been saying this the past few years…i’m almost to the point of giving up on college football. the lack of principles and the money money money mind set of the schools, commissioners, coaches, and TV clowns, are in my mind killing the game. then of course, you have some of the players themselves doing whatever they can in order to bring down the game i used to love more than any other game.

i may make it through this year and the next or maybe not. time tells. when the playoffs coming rolling into our living rooms it might be a different story. different because if you think THEY won’t somehow or another totally screw up the deal, i have some prime desert real estate i think you ought to invest in or outright buy. hey, it only took em 40 years or so after the playoffs were originally talked about to get what did get done. when they do mess up the deal we’re stuck with it for what? 14 years? yep, leave it to the morons in charge to deal from the bottom of the deck any time they think they can get away with it. they’ve been doing it for so long it’s the only thing they know. well, that and endless stripper scavenger hunts along with bales upon bales of cold hard cash.

fear not, pilgrims, when week one of the season rolls around the end of august i’ll be here with my weekly picks and predictions just like the past 4 years. of course, i should be making some sort of pre-season top 10 25 or something another. i never have so why should i start now? ok. so i used to do a usc and oregon season preview. i can’t get worked up enough anymore for that. maybe if i was getting paid for this i could manage.
for free? yeah, right.

in lieu of any of that stuff i’ll leave this insanity with something i wrote back in august of 2007, ‘something is in the air’. sadly, i buried my dad this past june and my feelings about pro football have began that slippery slide into college football. life moves morphs and changes. see you the week of the 31st.

jmh

if i’m not mistaken i think i heard the car radio say there’s only 20 some odd days left. yep, that’s it. then it’s over. the long long drought will finally be over. the endless or seemingly endless wait since the beginning of january. those long dog days of the college football fan. mixing metaphors here but who cares? not me. baseball blows but it’s in it’s dog days. like i said, us college football fans have been in the doldrums for months now. that, is soon to pass. anymore i’m strictly a college footbawh fan. yeah, seems like that’s the way some of my heroes pronounce it, footbawh. sorta like the correct way to pronounce golf is, goff. speaking of which, thank you tiger, for kicking that big mouth’s ass this past weekend. sabatini is bush league. major drifts already. college football or more to the point, amateur football, has been a big part of my life since i was a kid. my dad is a big fan having played high school ball back in the barnie oldfield days with the leather sorta helmet sans the face guard. as far back as i can remember we were going to local high school games whenever we could. if i wasn’t doing anything particular on a saturday night i’d make the road trip with my dad and one of his buddies to see the local junior college team play where ever they happened to be going here in so cal. that riff went on into and through my high school years. amateur football is in my blood.

hell, i even played pop warner football for 2 years. plus 2 years of high school football. that was before i realized i wasn’t quite big enough for the game and all the nagging little pains of playing the game just made it no fun anymore. i worked with a guy for a time that played division one football along with his brother, who went into the world football league and then the nfl. i asked him once why he didn’t play pro ball like his brother. he said he got tired of the all the little nagging pains. i told him i got tired of them in my sophomore year of high school. he laughed.

sure, i used to enjoy watching the pros play but anymore it’s just something i can’t get into. plus sitting around most of the day saturday watching as many games as i can get away with doesn’t make me want to sit around all day sunday and do it all over again. then there’s the g/f factor. she will put up with my saturday football jones for the coming 3 months but if it slops over into sunday she isn’t happy about it. fine by me. i’ve lost interest any the ways.

see, the thing about the pros is the league or owners don’t have any loyalty to the fans. prime example is al davis and his weirdness on every level imaginable. bottom line is, the trojans, notre dame, michigan, boise st, etal will always be where they are. they aren’t moving anywhere. ever. none of them are moving. oh, some of the schools might switch conferences. big deal. i don’t care. thing is tommy trojan isn’t moving anywhere for any price. same for notre dame’s golden dome. the pros? got enough money with a free stadium paid for by tax money then, hey, i’m there. see? no loyalty.

sure big money plays a part in the college game as well. the bcs deal is a freaking nightmare of total bullshit. it’s all about money. now a days everything is about money or sex. well, maybe it’s always been that way. yes, yes, yes, the college kids get a free ride and half of them don’t graduate and the schools make a ton of money. plus lots of the players are just assholes and products of our ever diminishing culture, be that as it may, without college football your sister/daughter ain’t going to any major school in the country on a field hockey scholarship. period. college football pays the way for all the other sports. women’s sports in particular.

ok. so i’ve been all over the place. i’m just amped that it’s 26 days and counting till football kicks off. amateur football. i’m even looking forward to the high school games on cable. no more road trips for me. i have all the football i can watch right in the comfort of all the rooms in the house that have a tv and that’s just about all of them. i would even watch pop warner games if they put em on tv. bring it on. amateur football is in my blood.

this evening’s music provided by, dave mason, ‘alone together’, a damn fine lp.

jmh

Written by john hauge

August 1, 2012 at 11:08 am

old soldiers never die…

with 4 comments

they just fade away. douglas macarthur got that one right along with a few other things. yeah, old soldiers never die. or so it seems. the sad truth is they often do. the WW2 generation being at the forefront these days. my 97 year old dad being one of them as well. he’d been sick off and on since the end of march. i’d been at his hospital bedside and watched things being done to him that i wish now i hadn’t seen. he was an old soldier almost to the end. my encouragement to him to be that soldier once again and suck it up like the old days seemed to work at times. though near the end his infection won out and he lost what strength he had left for any more fighting. his death came suddenly but not unexpectedly a couple of weeks ago.

while in the emergency room waiting for a bed in the hospital he wanted to leave and go for a ride. ‘let’s get out of here and go for a ride’, were his words. i’d taken him out for a doughnut and coffee a week or so before and then out by the winery ghost town where he had worked and lived for a number of years after getting out of the army in 1945. where i had lived the first two years of my life. he hadn’t seen the place in a few years and was surprised and saddened by it all.

like mom, a few years ago, dad got to take that last ride the other morning. the brown eyed girl and i took dad’s ashes out to riverside national cemetery to be buried with his wife of almost 68 years. it was a small quiet service. punctuated by the volley of shots fired off by the regular army honor guard. a very moving experience if there ever was one. i’m sure dad enjoyed it as much as i did through my tears.

adios, pop. we love you and you will be missed. we’ll meet up again someday. until then, duermes con dios.

jmh

Written by john hauge

July 13, 2012 at 11:07 am

the rolling stones ~~ 50 years and counting

with 2 comments

the brown eyed girl informed me this morning that since today is the 50th anniversary of the rolling stones first live show or some damn thing or another, and that folks were trotting out their top 10 stone’s song lists in honor of that sacred event.  so, she asked me if i was going to do a ‘list’.  i said no but have since decided why not in that this spring and early summer there hasn’t been much in the way of new stuff coming from this end of the space time continuum writing wise. 
 
i’m old but i wasn’t there to see the first rolling stones live show.  i didn’t get to see them live until november of 1969.  the infamous 3am performance at the forum here in southern california.   just a few weeks ahead of the even more infamous altamont show up by the city by the bay. a show i thankfully missed due to getting drafted into the army a few days before the whip came down up north.  at any rate, i’ve been a stones fan since i first heard them on the radio.  ‘love is love and not fade away’.  things don’t get much better than that.  ok.  so here’s my list.  the caveat being it’s today’s list.  this moment’s list.  this evening after a nice home cooked meal composed of a wedge salad, bbqed hanger steak, roasted corn and lord knows how many glasses of dago red things might be different.  tomorrow morning as well.  or a week from next thursday.  get the picture?  i think you do.  the songs bottom to top are…
 
 
10.  sweet virginia.  yeah, scrape the shit right off your shoes.  reminds me of my long ago forgotten youth.  a back in the day type thing.
 
09.  i’m a king bee.  a youth and testosterone memory filled song.  although a re-make, one of their first great tunes.
 
08.  memo from turner.  yeah, we all work for you mick/keith.
 
07.  rip this joint.  more youth and testosterone.  alabam don’t give a damn.  little rock don’t give a fuck.  uh huh.    
 
06.  wild horses.  the song written for gram parsons.  
 
05.  the spider and the fly.   she’s common flirty she looks about thirty.  there’s a theme going on here.   
 
04.  let it bleed.  i was dreaming of a steel guitar engagement.  
 
03.  jigsaw puzzle.  love the song and the sentiment.  
 
02.  under assistant west coast promo man.  memories of huntington beach, ca many many moons ago along with a certain home in de onta.
 
01.  gimme shelter.  this is one thing that doesn’t change.  regardless of the mood.  number of glasses of vino.  or pretty much anything else.  their best song.  ever. 
 
 
i’m sure you have your favorites as well.  raise a glass and toast the original bad boys of rock and roll.  happy 50th anniversary lads!!
 
jmh    
 

Written by john hauge

July 10, 2012 at 1:59 pm

The Lefty Writes

Writing, Reading, Occasional Mad Ramblings

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