Friday Roundup

October 21, 2011

- See all 763 of my articles

No new episode of Treasure Hunt today.  My creative energies have been diverted elsewhere this week.  A secret project is underway – more about that next week (hopefully).

If you’re thinking of buying a Kindle, check out my review from a couple of weeks ago.  I touch on the pros and cons of each model.  What’s great for you might not be a good fit for someone else.  If you like the article and decided to take the plunge, consider buying through the links on the site – we’ll earn a small commission on the sale.

You can now check out Kindle books at many public libraries.  Check out this feature!  I’ve been making slow progress on the print edition of The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest and downloaded the Kindle version from my library.  You can’t use 3G to download, needing instead to use either WiFi or USB to transfer the book.  Nonetheless, a cool feature.

This is article 1002 for The Soap Boxers.  Want to see them all?  Explore the archives.

The World Series is underway.  It’s currently tied at one game apiece, with the Cardinals taking game one and the Rangers game two.  A huge play in game two occurred when Elvis Andrus moved to second base on  slightly errand throw.  Albert Pujols touched the throw from the outfield ever so slightly, slowing its path to catcher Yadier Molina and making it impossible for Molina to cut down Andrus as he tried to advance.  As a result, the double play was no longer in order.  Making the situation even worse for the Cardinals, Andrus moved to third on a the run-scoring sacrifice fly by Josh Hamilton.  Had he been at first base when Hamilton came to bat, he would have been unable to advance on the fly, and the throw from right field to second base is much shorter than the throw to third.

Last Saturday, Chad Dawson scored a controversial TKO in a boxing match against light heavyweight champion Bernard Hopkins.  The key sequence in the match involved Dawson lifting Hopkins into the air and throwing him to the canvas.  An injured Hopkins was unable to continues and the bout was called.  On Tuesday, the WBC declared the match a technical draw and reinstated Hopkins as the champion (the reigning champion must LOSE in order to lose his belt; he retains the title in the case of a draw).  This is an interesting – and seemingly correct – decision.  I’m not much of a boxing fan, but find it interesting to see the result of a contest changed after the fact.  This simply doesn’t happen in team sports.

As a lover of Tigers, I was saddened by the shooting of 49 animals – including 18 Bengal tigers – after their owner opened their cages and committed suicide.  I fully understand the decisions that authorities were faced with, and can’t fault them for their choice.  I place the blame on the owner, Terry Thompson, who put the animals in danger by released them.  Thompson had been convicted of animal cruelty in the past.  While the Bengal Tiger is the most common of the Tiger subspecies, there are fewer than 2500 of them in the world, and the death of 18 in one event is a blow to conservation efforts.

On Thursday, we heard reports that Libyan leader Gadhafi (Qaddafi) was killed in a crossfire between his troops and those of the National Transitional Council.  His death ends a 42 year reign over the African country.  Observers wonder if this will embolden rebels in other countries, such as in Yemen, where rebels have called for the resignation of president Ali Abdullah Saleh.  For some interesting insights into Libyan/American relations, I’d suggest Nelson DeMille’s novel, The Lion’s Game.  It’s fiction, of course, so you can’t treat it like a history book (although many of those books indeed contain fiction), but it’s an entertaining introduction to the culture.

3 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Cristian Balau
    Oct 21, 2011 @ 22:42:02

    Yeah, Gadhafi was really killed, in a very unhuman way I may add. So much for a fair trail and all that stuff. Ended up like a true dictator, killed by its own people, kinnda reminded me of Ceausescu.


  2. RubyPanther
    Oct 22, 2011 @ 17:23:26

    Actually in team sports it happens too. USC had their 2004–2005 BCS National Championship Game win stripped, the same sort of action as a “no contest” in combat sports.

    There is a history in amateur sports of vacating results that were found been gained by cheating or by cheaters.

    Lots of Olympic Medal wins have been vacated.

    In combat sports a fair number of results get changed to “no contest” when the original winner fails their drug test.


  3. kosmo
    Oct 22, 2011 @ 20:42:40

    @ Panther – I did a poor job of explaining that. My complete thought didn’t make it into the article. What I felt was unprecedented was an on-field decision by an official being overruled, resulting in a changed result. In team sports, if an on-field official makes a bad call, it generally stands anyway. There are exceptions – such as the George Brett Pine Tar Incident – but not many.

    Also slightly different than vacated wins because after the changed, each boxer’s record still shows this as a bout, just as a draw instead of a win or loss. I was under the impression that the bout isn’t a “no contest”. I may be wrong about that. With vacated games in sports, the wins are vacated by the cheating team, but the records of the other teams aren’t altered.

    @ Cristian – Sometimes you reap what you sow. Seems that dictators often meet a bad end.


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