Category Archives: Sports


I can’t believe that I’m up at nearly midnight watching live Olympic curling.

I’ve learned enough of the rules to be dangerous and I know enough (I think; I probably don’t) to recognize a really good shot.

Strategy? Yeah, let’s not go crazy here.

When I was a kid I never imagined myself as a a rebel or a wild & crazy guy – I was never going to be Peter Fonda in “Easy Rider.” At the other extreme, I never saw myself watching guys slide forty-seven pound rocks a hundred and fifty feet down the ice to bump the other guys’ rocks off of the button and out of the house.

On the other hand, after the two weeks (or two months, or eight) that I’ve had, sitting on my ass for a couple of hours and doing nothing more mentally complex than watching guys slide forty-seven pound rocks a hundred and fifty feet down the ice to bump the other guys’ rocks off of the button and out of the house is wonderful.

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Filed under Castle Willett, Sports

No Context For You – November 19th

Regards pretty much nothing, after my beloved Angels missed the playoffs for the third season in a row, I was pleased to see my beloved Kings start off hot and have the best record in the NHL after a month or so, and my beloved Chiefs were the last undefeated team in the NFL when they were 5-0.

The Kings have now lost five of six and the Chiefs have now lost 4 of 5 and I just want to know…

…when do pitchers and catchers report to Spring Training in Arizona?


Filed under KC Chiefs, LA Angels, LA Kings, Photography, Sports

Congratulations, Astros

It’s a little bit complicated, but I’m not unhappy to see that the Houston Astros won the World Series tonight.

My first choice, of course, would be that my beloved Angels would win their second World Series championship. With that not happening, my second choice would be my beloved Cubbies, but they didn’t make it very far into the playoffs this year.

It’s tough for me to root for the Dodgers since I’m a huge fan of their crosstown rivals, but I don’t hate the Dodgers. I’m just not a big fan of theirs.

It’s tough for me to root for the Astros since I’m a huge fan of a rival team in the same division. I’m just not a big fan of theirs.

But it was a very entertaining Series, which I enjoyed a lot.

My Twitter feed was oddly schizophrenic – many of the folks I follow are from JPL and folks I’ve met at local NASA Socials (huge Dodger fans) and many of the folks I follow are astronauts and NASA Social folks from Houston (huge Astros fans). One way or the other, a third or so of my Twitter feed was going to be overjoyed and a third was going to be devastated.

But the Astros hadn’t ever won a World Series before, while the Dodgers had won a handful over the years (although nothing since 1988).

The city of Houston had a huge tribulation with Hurricane Harvey this year, where the Astros were a source of pride and encouragement for the citizens of the area.

And there are a couple of Astros players that I really like. In particular, Jose Altuve would be one of my personal favorite players if he wasn’t on a rival team and consistently playing a huge part in keeping us in the losing column and out of the playoffs.

So I would have been fine if the Dodgers won, but I’m just a hair more fine with the Astros winning. It’s sort of a 51 vs 49 thing.

Now that that’s all settled – when do pitchers and catchers report to Tempe Diablo?

Next year!

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Sunday Football

In the fall in the United States on Sundays, there’s a thing called the National Football League. In this part of the world, the team formerly known as the San Diego Chargers have now moved to Los Angeles. My childhood loyalties are to the Kansas City Chiefs, a fierce rival of the Chargers.

The Chargers are in an unenviable position where the people of San Diego hate them for leaving and the people of Los Angeles couldn’t care less about them. They don’t have a home stadium here – their eventual home will be shared with another team (the transplanted Los Angeles Rams, who used to be the St Louis Rams, after previously being the Los Angeles Rams) and for the moment the Chargers are playing in Stubhub Center on the college campus of Cal State Dominguez Hills.

Stubhub Center is lovely and new and no doubt a high end soccer stadium by US standards. By NFL standards, it’s not even a decent minor league stadium. It seats 36,000 max, while almost all other NFL stadiums start in the 60,000+ range and from there get really BIG.

We got there about two hours before game time, were surprised that we could get into the stadium that early, so we sat in the shade and chilled. It was lovely.

The other thing about being a transplant team is that you don’t have a legion of loyal fans. Look at any other NFL stadium, you’ll see a sea of fans wearing the home team colors, jerseys, and paraphernalia. The Chiefs wear red, the Chargers powder blue – see what the crowd looked like during the game?

The game itself was exciting as the Chiefs took off to an early 14-0 lead after several HUGE Chargers mistakes.

The Chargers made a game of it, but the Chiefs pulled away at the end, despite playing a bit sloppy and making way too many penalties.

With a late touchdown to put it away, my beloved Chiefs won 24-10. We’re now 3-0 on the season, the final undefeated team in the American Conference.

Many thanks to my son for the surprise visit from overseas and the tickets, and to my daughter’s boyfriend (a Chargers fan) for putting up with us all.

Oh, by the way, I probably won’t be speaking much tomorrow. Or maybe Tuesday. I did a lot of screaming today…


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Filed under KC Chiefs, Photography, Sports

Tonight We Revel In The Inconsequential 

Given all of the world-class Sturm und Drang we’re being buried under these days – hurricanes, earthquakes, politics, threat of nuclear Armageddon, the new television season – tonight was a night to celebrate one of the simple pleasures, the start of the NFL season.

For those who have been around, it’s not a secret that I’m a lifelong KC Chiefs fan. Tonight we had the opening game of the season against the Super Bowl champion New England Patriots, on the road in Massachusetts. None of the “pundits” gave us a chance.

As a fan, one of the joys of being back in KC for the eclipse two weeks ago was being able to stock up on gear. I’m not sure it’s kosher to go full football fan on them at the office so the more garish and outlandish paraphernalia was left at home, but I did manage to sneak in a new (and wonderfully garish) pair of Chiefs socks.

Down in the garage, I had Hissy fitted out with her new flag – I was of course dressed in red and gold for the day.

We’ll see how long the flag lasts before some subhuman Raiders fan (like there are any other kinds!) tears it off and desecrates it.

It was a full and busy day at the office so despite my best intentions, I didn’t make it home until halftime. But for the record, we kicked their asses, 42-27.

I know that it’s “just sports,” in the big scheme of things it’s just a game, we could in theory go 1-15 on the season (but now we can still go 16-0 also!), and years from now it won’t matter a millionth as much as what’s going on with the hurricanes, earthquakes, politics, or whatever.

On the other hand, these days you have to take your cheap thrills where you can find them. It was a great night to be a Chiefs fan.


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Two Days Out & Counting

Tomorrow we attempt to divine the future from weather maps and scientific models of cloud cover.

Today we enjoyed Kansas City, with a visit to the wonderful World War I Museum…

…and a Royals game at Kauffman Stadium.

Look at that “clear and a million” sky! All day long!

Tomorrow it starts to go to hell (i.e., return to normal, partially to mostly cloudy, muggy, hot, convective, pop-up thunderstorms and fronts) and stays that way for the next several days.

As we knew going into this, Monday’s results are going to need a little bit of luck.

Two days out and counting…

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Filed under Astronomy, Photography, Sports, Travel

#15 of 30

Halfway there.

There are thirty current major league baseball teams playing in thirty different stadiums – this is the fifteenth of these that I’ve visited to see a game.

One of my kids, Spawn Three, has probably been to a couple more than me – that apple didn’t fall far from the tree. But she’ll also never get to old Municipal Stadium in KC to see a double-header with Charlie O the Mule signing autographs between games, so I’ve got that whole “arrow of time” thing going for me at least.

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