creative writing

more wishful thingking

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this first appeared back in february of 08. i’d forgotten i’d written it. though with yet another election looming soon over the approaching horizon it seems like a good idea to do a summer re-run.  it’s been ten years since i wrote this and we’re not any closer to it happening than we were 10 plus years ago. a sad thing.

jmh

lots of wishful thinking on my part over the years on lots of different stuff. anything from the chance meeting of say, heidi klum, where we immediately fall into to bed and live happily ever after. or perhaps, the twice weekly i’m going to be the next california super lottery winner. wishful thinking. i think the odds on either of those things happening are probably both in the same ballpark. a ballpark with very long odds and over 400 feet down each line to the foul pole.

i’m not the first person to wishful think either of the two i mentioned. not by a long shot. male or female. for either. yeah, heidi’s that hot. drifting here. no, it’s the political season of the witch, no, not necessarily, lady machill. it’s just this season of endless political weirdness that over the years has become just annoying and nauseating and finally culminating with my withdrawing from all elections. my official absentee ballot usually ends up in the shredder.

i have some wishful thinking that might drag me back into the fray. the problem being is that’s just what it is because the humps in charge of both major parties and probably the fringe groups as well, wouldn’t like it. oh, maybe some of the fringe guys might but the big sex and money boys and girls would probably have a collective massive coronary if it came to pass. which might not be a bad idea. then we could just start over from scratch. more drifting. perhaps.

i’m not the only person to come up with this wishful thought as it’s been tossed around every now and again over the years but it never goes anywhere. sadly. big money wants nothing to do with it. i think it scares them. good. they scare me. daily.

i think the time has come to scare the bejesus out of them for a change. this sad slate of presidential candidates would seem like the perfect time for my wishful thought to maybe make it past the blossom stage and give fruition to something that should have happened years ago.

oh, i’m sure all the candidates are probably sorta nice folks. i mean maybe you could probably invite them all over to the house for some grub, massive amounts of dago red, and mah jong. though they would all have to promise no politics. the only problem is they all, would at some point, renege and start campaigning. worse yet, while working the room glad handing anyone in sight, they would be spilling heirloom cabernet all over the living room furniture and in general just being boorish dinner guests. the whole sad deal would probably end up being worse than letting the local canvassing scientology crew in for a chat and a brew. god, the horror. i don’t know if they do that but just the thought of it scares me on lots of levels.

the point of this madness? for those of you that have stuck it out here it is…none of the above. yep. that’s it. none of the above needs to be added to every ballot in the country. it’s time is way the hell over due. it’s simple in it’s purity and gives those of us something to vote for other than the ever ubiquitous ‘lesser of two evils’. cause that’s what it generally comes down to in any election. in particular a presidential election. regardless who is running. or statewide elections.  or city countywide elections for any matter.

sadly, it’s not going to happen. although i think it needs to be brought up and hammered home to our elected elitist that they serve us and not their pocketbook or summer home where ever the hell it is. it’s time we that have made ourselves the disenfranchised get our vote back. sure we quit voting on our own accord. however, they were the ones that pissed us off so much we just up and said, fuck this, i ain’t voting anymore every again for any of you witless bunch of money grubbing oily sanctimonious swine.

problem is they have all forgotten just who the hell it is they serve. they all think they are there just to serve themselves up their own personal money tree. yes, they are the folks that actually have that tree. the tree that your dad asked your mom if she thought money grew on trees tree. well, it does exist. you just have to get elected to any public office in the land. it also comes with the keys to the new tony soprano model caddy escalade AND your very own 23 year old smokin’ hot mistress. boy, howdy. makes a man want to run for office, don’t it?

imagine the chagrin some november after the votes have been tallied and candidate A gets 12%. candidate B gets 12%. the fringe guys and gals get their usual 1% and lo and behold, none of the above, wins with a whopping 75%. you snicker. though it could happen. no, by god, it should happen. it’s time we the fed up disenfranchised take our vote back. take our vote back and vote for none of the above in any damn election we feel like. we need to badger our elected swine into letting us vote for none of the above. why not? what’s the problem with that? why is it just wishful thinking?

what? what the hell? who the fuck are you anyway? why no way, sonny boy, we can’t do that. why that would be un-american. say, just what kind of commie pinko nazi muslim are you any the ways? by all that’s holy, you gotta be one of em or all of em for even suggesting such a vile idea. why, why, i think i’ll let my bodyguards shoot you for bringing that sick deviant idea up in my very own official officially sanctioned official office. ed, jack. take this commie nazi muslim scum out back and do what needs to be done.

so like here’s the deal. call your congressperson and senator. be polite. ya hear? yeah, well, hopefully they have no clue you don’t vote. then tell whoever answers the phone we need the none of the above clause added to All ballots in this once great nation. simple easy. sure they will laugh and hang up. come on, the caddy and smokin’ hot mistress need a good hot wax. so call again. give them the same rap. if enough of you supposed americans do this. we will get the none of the above clause on all ballots across america for every election. it’s time has come.

jmh

socal madness part 3

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the early spring and summer passed with little change from any other early spring and summer. the three friends sat and drank each evening in the soft summer evening light of southern california. the summer progressed into the hot damp nasty dog days of august. the time when sleep was fitful and restless at best. the thumpity thump of the weekend car traffic made it even worse. sleep became a rare and precious commodity. for the three old friends the lack of sleep, once again, became a part of their daily evening conversation.

‘man, this heat and humidity is killing me. i can’t sleep. when i do doze off the chumps and their car stereos jolt my old ass wide awake.’
‘yeah, it’s a never ending cycle this time of year.’
‘you boys had enough?’
‘enough of what?’
‘oh, shit, he’s back on that again?’
‘what do you think? of course i am. you think i want to end up like my old man and piss my pants every time i take a leak? stuck with wearing a kotex in my underwear for years, until i finally die? no, thanks. i’m not going to out live my future. i’m not doing that. there comes a time when what’s the point? it’s quality not quantity. i mean to take some of these assholes out. if i die, fine. if i get caught the state can keep me in kotex till i die. fuck it. the state ain’t gonna catch me. no way. i’m fucking doing this. if you guys help, it will be a piece of cake. if not, well, i’ll manage. somehow.’

as usual the other two friends just sat there and looked at each other. neither saying a word for what was probably half an hour. finally one of them spoke.
‘ok. yeah, pants pissing. jesus. i hear you. life just sorta gets worse and worse. daily shit goes down the tube faster than an unassisted hard on disappears.’
‘ain’t that the truth? it’s not like we have much going for us. i mean other than this. and this is just, well, getting to the point of, sorry, just some sort of sewing circle type shit but with drinks.’
‘sad but true. ok. looks like we are signing on to this madness of yours. what the fuck?’
‘i guess we are. seems like we may as well. i don’t want to end up stinking of piss and shit in my really golden years. fuck that. either a blaze of glory or the state can deal with my sorry ass. either way, i don’t care.’
‘yeah, seems like that’s the case. ok. count me in.’

they rose as one and touched bottles or glasses together and sealed the insane mad plan.

to saner men, this pact, seemingly dredged up from the bowels of hell would have given them pause. why should lack of sleep and the stupidity of the young, along with the fears of the old, make anyone want to kill? indeed, why? to those three men the answer would be, why not? why not, retaliate against the rampant madness all around them? why not take out something that is nothing more than a cancer on the breast of society? take out something that is abhorrent to any civilized man. yes, so it seems, the mad plan had some legs. madness, seemingly coming to a head. the one who’s original plan it was shook his head and said, ‘finally.’

several days passed until the madness was spoken of again. ‘ok. look, we need a rehearsal before the harder stuff goes down. i have someone in mind. you guys know who it is.’
‘yeah. tell me about it. i know. ha ha. the asshole who every morning before 6am has his car radio blaring for 5 or 10 minutes in the garage while god knows what the hell is going on in his house.’
‘right on, my brother. it’s that dumb fucker.’
‘ha ha. i’m with you on that. sure, we should have done him long ago. sorry ass inconsiderate fuck that he is.’
‘ok. look. we do this guy first. it ain’t gonna be easy with the early morning light but we have history going for us. we have the real early morning assholes then there’s a break until this dick rolls out to work. we have a window of maybe 5 minutes, way more than enough time for the deal to go down. i say we go monday morning. agreed?’
‘ok.’
‘yeah, sure.’
‘solid. we go monday morning.’

sunday night the three now totally insane friends met for the evening of patio drinking. ‘alright. the asshole starts his car and has the car stereo blaring. he goes back in the house for 5 or so minutes.. he comes back out and leaves. when he comes out i’m in the garage and i double tap him. we toss him in the car and drive away.’
‘i like it. man, like you said the car stereo covers the .22 shorts.’
‘yeah, we should have done this piece of crap long ago. what were we thinking?’
the reply came in unison, ‘damned if i know.’
‘one thing though. we need to police the brass.’
‘oh, shit. yeah, we sure do.’
‘piece of cake. i’ll just attach some nylon stocking thing to the ejector and let it catch the brass. lots easier than fumbling around on the ground trying to find it.’
‘sounds good.’

so, the next morning the three friends were up even before the rat bastards and their car stereo insanity began.
‘ok, first thing. we all wear gloves.’
‘yes.’
‘right.’
‘i cap him. we toss him in the car and you drive him a couple of blocks away. you follow and bring him back. remember to lock the car and be sure the windows are rolled up. then you guys drive over to the super wally’s mart and toss the keys in one of the dumpsters out back. or down some drain someplace as you drive by. don’t matter, just get rid of them and make sure no one sees you.’
‘solid. no problem.’
‘i hope so. if we pull this one off, we are in. the late night early morning stuff will be a piece of cake.’
‘right on.’
‘let’s do it.’

thirty minutes later the man who did the same thing each and every morning started his car in the garage and left it there with the radio blaring. it was only a few minutes before 6am, but of course he, being an asshole, was totally oblivious to his own rampant stupidity. it was to be his last morning of such utter disregard for his fellow neighbors. as he stepped from the house and into his garage two barely audible shots rang out. the dumb ass was dead before he hit the ground.

the two other friends quickly gathered him up and tossed him into the front seat of the car. with the garage door closing one of the friends drove off with the radio still at ungodly levels for any time of the day. the other friend followed. three blocks to the east they found a quite residential street and left the car with the dead asshole stuffed down on the floorboards of the passenger side of the car. locked it up then dumped his car keys in a storm drain two blocks further east.

the whole sad affair was over and done within 10 minutes, tops. the three friends gathered at a local ihop for breakfast to celebrate and discuss their mornings work.
‘boys, like i have been telling you. simple easy. right?’
‘yeah, easy as pie.’ ‘ok. when do we start for real?’
‘let’s don’t get too greedy. we wait for a day or two and see what happens. then we go for it.’

jmh

the old west meets the old east

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this morning
in the
crapper
reading
one of those cooking
magazines.

some guy in
north
vietnam
driving by a
sidewalk barber
shop.

the lightning bolt
almost tossed me
off my throne.

yeah, viet
hair cut joints.
picture
the
wild west.
back in the
day.

cornered.
by the marshall
a
bird
colonel.
jesus son
get a haircut.
yes sir.

next morning
we grab a
jeep
our horse.
four guys.
fully loaded.

a cloud of
dust.
a whiff
of smoke.
a quick
ride into
what passed
for
downtown.

a sea
side fishing
ville
by day.
indian country
by night.

i am the
walrus
fades into a
smelly dead fish
rot.
not
horse shit.

ft apache.
dodge city.
tombstone.
somewhere
off in
the
distance.

park out
front.
one stays with
the horse.
M-79 &
a bag of
rounds.
grenades &
buck shot.
nasty
effective
bad juju.

inside under the
barber’s sheet.
M-16 cocked and
locked.
we take turns.
first out
spells
the horse
sitter.

deed done.
crappy hair cut.
ride back to
the old
french mission.
maybe stop for
pho.
maybe not.

at some
point.
the whole
barber in
the ville
thing
was
deemed
too
hazardous.

a deal was
cut.
he came to us
on his day
off.
sunday
afternoon.

the wild wild
east
got a little
tamer.

it was
a long time
ago.
but it
doesn’t take
much.
some days more
so
than others.

jmh

# 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

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

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

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 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

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