Breakers Lose Osborne, Phillies/BoSox Win, Hops are Ready to Harvest, Bret's back, and Dick Hums Along

Sadly, according to my Google Alerts this morning, the Breakers have lost midfielder Leslie Osborne for the season with a fractured collarbone.  Osborne has been amazing for the B’s and I agree with Tony D, who says, “Finishing the season without Leslie Osborne on the field is going to be a big loss for our club.”

Right now the Breakers are in third place and, barring a late-season meltdown (like last year) ought to make the play-off’s.  Who’d a thunk THAT a couple of months ago!

At least Leslie will still be able to be on the bench (presumably) … but who steps up and into her slot on the field?

On the MLB front, the Phillies had a solid game from Roy Oswalt, Chase Utley returned to the line-up WAY ahead of schedule, and their win over the Giants put them on top of the wild card race in the NL.  But, as Charlie Manuel said, “We don’t care about the wild card.”  Ryan Howard should be back soon .. then watch out world!

The BoSox beat the Angels handily (6-0) … and are loving Ryan Kalish!  But apparently Jacoby Ellsbury is done for the season.  It would seem that he needs to really, really, really give those ribs time to heal!

On the beer-making front (HollyCornblog has been busy making windowsills … but hasn’t forgotten about the beer), here’s an update on the Hop Harvest from Ms. Cornblog her ownself!

“Our Cascade hops are going crazy, but aren’t quite ready to pick yet.

“You can see how the cones are still kind of tight on them. They need to open up a little more like a flower.”

Here are some of the Cascades cascading from the hop trellis (which you can barely see) … bounteous, eh?

I find it so interesting that some plants are thriving so, with all the dry weather we’ve had.

Wonder if we’ll see the results of the drought NEXT year.

Here in NH we’ve been getting a bumper crop of peaches … and the blueberries have been luscious … go figure!

And here’s a bit of the harvest, up close and personal.  Aren’t they nice, juicey-looking critters? 

I think they look a little like small cabbages … or maybe tiny artichokes.

(And nope, these are not especially appetizing analogies from a beer-making perspective, I agree!)

Finally, here are some hops on the screen, drying out to be ready for some dry-hopping … right, HollyCornblog? 

Can’t wait to taste what you do with them all!

Perhaps I will taste some of your handiwork later this fall or early this winter … while watchig Bret Favre play with the Vikings for yet-another-season.  (And I suppose that we should be thankful that the annual mating dance didn’t last quite as long this year.  Or am I just becoming numbed to it?)

Okay, now for Dick.

I found some interesting biographical tidbits in the Wikipedia article about him … for example, did you know that he flunked out of Yale?  Or that he was convicted of DUI in 1962 at age 21?  Interesting parallels to Dubya … except that Dubya didn’t flunk out and wasn’t convicted.

Of course, that’s probably because Dubya had access to more money and influence back in the day … but Cheney rectified that for himself.

Oh, and they both also managed to avoid military service.

And both ended up hawkish, narrow-minded, unforgiving, unreflective, wealthy, powerful, and generally pretty nasty … why is that?

My theory is that when Dick had his first heart attack in 1978 at age 37, he was terrified – as most anyone would be.  He went into fear-mode and hasn’t looked back since.

Rather than letting this brush with his mortality contribute to a deepening wisdom, Mr. Dick took it, apparently, as a rationale for developing the kind of faux machismo that kinda matched Bush’s deplorably smug swagger … but was even nastier.  He worked hard, driven by fear, to make sure that he made his world as safe as he could.

That meant amassing money, I’m sure … and embracing a black and white, good and evil, childishly simplistic view of things that can be used to justify pretty much whatever you want to do.

Dick’s persona has reminded me a lot of my late, maternal grandfather’s.  He works from a fearful and angry place filled with judgmentalness and  the kind of brusk surity that I seriously mistrust.

He seems someone who may ultimately be just a tad unsure of his masculinity (maybe that’s what brushes with mortality do to some folks).  So, forgetting the fact that he himself avoided the draft and other such nastiness, Dick gets himself all worked up into a tough and bombastic lather about things.  It’s downright Dickish.

He’s all full of sturm und drang when it comes to ordering others to do things like die on battlefields and torture folks and such.  The posturing is powerful and amazing … when you don’t actually have to carry any of it out yourself, eh Dick?

So, the sad thing is that Dick’s brush with mortality didn’t deepen him.  No, instead, he went for the shallow end of the pool.  Had he not happened to amass money and power in the course of his life’s journey, he’d just be one of those annoying, grouchy people that gets avoided at family gatherings and church socials. 

Or maybe he’d have been arrested for shooting someone in the face.

Or, actually, he might not even be here … because his health insurance might not have allowed for all the many procedures he’s had to keep his ticker ticking through the years.

The possiblities are endless.

But, sadly for America, he did amass money and power … very sadly for America.

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