Monthly Archives: March 2010

Obsidian argues that men are generally more expected to “settle” than are women:

Because of evolutionary realities, Women are and have always been the choosier sex. This is understandable-Women only have a limited amount of eggs, a limited amount of time to “make good” on them, and human childbirth is perhaps the most difficult of all the mammals on the planet to pull off successfully. All of this makes sex, even in our time of vastly improved medical science, quite risky for the Female; if she makes the wrong choice of mate and has his kid(s), it can prove disastrous in a whole host of ways. I personally know scores of Men who, upon merely finding out that a Woman has a kid or two, immediately drops her from contention, not only as a date, but even as a pump and dump. They don’t want to be bothered, and in our age of “Maury Baby Mama/Baby Daddy” high drama, I can’t say that I blame them. Of course, there are also scores of Men out there who can and will screw just about everything in sight, and that’s kind of the point of this post today.

It’s an interesting theory, but one that I believe has two major vulnerabilities.

First, it’s easy and understandable for men to talk about how choosy women are because we are the ones that get rejected by them. They do the rejecting. We ask out. We seek to mate while they spend a good portion of their time shooting down men that seek to mate. Or that’s one way of looking at it, anyway. But men don’t spend much time rejecting women because we almost never have to. If we’re not attracted to a woman, all we have to do is refrain from asking her out! We ask out a very small percentage of the women that we know, so in a way we’re defacto rejecting the vast majority of women out there.

I’m not saying that it’s fair that we are expected to ask women out or that women must to some degree rely on men asking women out, but it’s still the most common practice. One of the upshots for men is that it allows us to reject women without rejecting them. It allows us to evade our own standards. It’s easier to believe that you have an extremely open mind when girls you’re uninterested in are background furniture.

The second problem is that we’re choosy when it comes to… what, precisely? Sex? As Obsidian points out, we’re notoriously unchoosy in that department. But when it comes to a monogamous relationship, marriage, and other forms of commitment, guys have something of a different reputation. When guys angle for sex but put off any sort of commitment, we are being choosy in our own way. We are being selective about who we give our monogamous devotion to. A guy that’s sleeping with a girl on a regular basis but refuses to commit to them is not necessarily being any less choosy. Can a woman who hedges on sex or romantic commitment even while she’s getting exactly what she wants from the guy (emotional validation, bug-smashing willingness, etc) make the claim that she’s not being choosy because she’s spending time and giving attention to a guy that is not exactly her ideal? It’s the same sort of thing.

Whether men are more picky than women or vice-versa is extremely difficult to gauge. Not coincidentally, both sides believe that it’s the other side gumming up with works with their unrealistic standards. As is often the case, the truth falls somewhere in between. It’s unlikely that each side is exactly the same degree of choosy in the aggregate, but it’s also the case that there is such wide variation within each gender that it’s problematic to paint with a very wide brush at all.

-{Link from In Mala Fide}-

Category: Coffeehouse

The common response to Ricky Martin coming out of the closet is to transparently feign surprise. After all, everybody knew he was gay, right? Actually, I wasn’t so sure. I think the contrarian in me made me wonder if it was too obvious to be true or something. Not that I spent a whole lot of time thinking about Ricky Martin since I was finally able to get that song out of my head two years ago*. I would have preferred it if Martin had come out prior to that point so that it wouldn’t have a resurgence in my mind. Thanks, Ricky.

It’s interesting the line that celebrities walk when it comes to such things. It was in Martin’s professional interest to be straight, or at least pretend to be. So when approached about it, he denied. Megan McArdle comments:

What Martin did is awfully brave and daring–given his profession, and what I understand to be the demographic for his music, this might be a career-ender.

I find his coming-out letter sort of interesting, though. He says that by not coming out, he was “not sharing with the world my entire truth”. Well, yes, but who does? I assure you, dear readers, that there are many parts of my “truth” to which you will never be privy, and lucky you, really.

It would have been a career-ender a decade ago. Arguably, the rumors did sufficiently damage his sex appeal that kept him from reaching his full potential. I remember Julianne’s reaction at the time was something to the effect of “Oh, of course he is. Damn.”

As far as the importance of coming out, if anything that can be chalked up to a reaction of his being hounded on the subject. If he’d never been asked and never lied about it before, it’s really quite possible that he would have taken the David Hyde Pierce approach to privacy. Pierce himself came out, of course, but that was in part to acknowledge his long-term relationship to Brian Hargrove. While one’s private sexuality is not something everybody needs to know, homosexual celebrities can’t skip straight past the homosexuality to acknowledge their would-be (and in Pierce’s case eventual) spouses**.

That it draws attention is not precisely their fault. Indeed, people like Martin and Pierce come out precisely because they’re asked the question. In their cases, over and over again. It’s the entertainment industry’s responsibility and by extension ours.

Of course, some celebrities come out more enthusiastically than others. Ellen Degeneres had a flailing sitcom and tied her announcement to her character’s in an attempt to save the show. Or at least that’s my reading of it. Even with the cynical motives I ascribe to Degeneres, though, I am inclined not to ask why she felt the need to come out. Being in the closet means having to keep your relationships under wraps. As long as we care who they’re dating (I don’t, but I mean “we” collectively), we force them to either hide it or come out. Being in a “secret relationship”, whatever the reason, sucks. I would find it immensely preferable if we didn’t keep tabs on what celebrity was dating what other celebrity, but curiosity is a witch. I don’t care as much as a lot of people and Americans don’t care as much as the British***, but few are completely immune. And as long as that’s the case, the preferable response is simply to say “okay” and move on.

* – It’s actually even worse than that. There was another song that came out at about the same time by someone else. I only barely remember the song and I remember a nod to the state of Nebraska, a metaphor about treading water, and the words “la vida noche”. I really liked the song and would love to be able to track it down, but it was just before the point where any Top 40 song gets planted in a bunch of lyric databases. I can’t find it to save my life. “Livin’ La Vida Loca” reminds me of that itch I can’t quite scratch.

** – This post is not about gay marriage.

*** – Sometimes I get frustrated with our celebrity-obsessed media, but whenever I go to a British website, I realize how much worse it could be.

Category: Theater

I mentioned the Roethlisberger rape allegation a couple weeks ago. It’s been interesting to watch the story develop. I had assumed it would be a he-said-she-said regarding whether intercourse was legal. Instead, Roethlisberger is denying that intercourse took place and the whole thing apparently took place in the club bathroom. They interviewed the bar manager, who described a series of events that – whether Roethlisberger is guilty or not – make the Steelers QB not look particularly good. Further, the security recordings from the night were mysteriously erased or damaged (and not due to recording-over). The idea that the bar is trying to protect itself from any liability it has over the incident is possible. Of course, they could be concerned whether a rape took place or not.

The overall vibes I’m getting from the case are that the accuser is not a gold-digger. If she wasn’t raped, it sure seems to me as though she thinks she was (or was convinced she was). I’ve heard rumors that her BAC was .2. On one hand, that makes for pretty unreliable testimony. On the other hand, she was too drunk to consent to anything that might have occurred. It looks like they are going to have trouble proving anything did occur, though. They’ve rescinded their request for a DNA sample, which means that they are skeptical of the girl’s claims or the girl’s claims are such that there would be no DNA.

Interestingly, while I am inclined to give the Georgia accuser some benefit of the doubt in terms of good faith, the more I read about the Nevada accusation the less bad Roethlisberger looks. That one reads much more like someone that had consensual sex and for one reason or another (money, being spurned, or both) made an accusation out of it. Of course, one of the things that made me take a sour look at Roethlisberger in the Georgia accusation was that this wasn’t his first. Seems odd that someone would be falsely accused or rape but then would go out and commit one. Or, for that matter, but himself in a position where such an accusation could be credibly made.

It makes me wonder if there was some beer haze surrounding the incident and that, after finding out what Roethlisberger was accused of before, the accused (or her friends) filled in some gaps with speculation. Of course, if her BAC was as high as reports suggest, anything that occurred would still be illegal. Whatever the case, one hopes that Roethlisberger will get his act together.

Category: Theater

A couple of really good scenes from the BBC show The Coupling involving nerves, awkwardness, and talking to women.

Jeff approaches a woman in a bar and ends up talking about a bucket of severed ears:

Steve calls Susan and ends up going to war with the horror movie blob of silence:

Category: Theater

I tend to try to avoid hot-button political issues on Hit Coffee because by and large I have discovered that people on both sides of most issues bring their opinions and sets of “facts” to the table and in blogland it devolves into a screaming match of accusations and name-calling. But every now and again I do feel compelled to discuss a sub-issue of limited scope if I feel that we can avoid being dragged into intractable larger debate where everybody’s mind is closed like a liquor store on Sunday.

The hot-button issue at hand is the health care reform law passed by congress and signed by the president. While everything is not completely settled on the matter, we have the broad strokes of what it is going to look like. The sub-issue I am interested in is the insurance mandate. There are all sorts of arguments for and against such a mandate and the Constitutional legitimacy thereof, but since they mostly come down to arguments about SOCIALIST(!!!!)S and FREE-MARKET WORSHIPPER(!!!!)S and STATIST(!!!!)S and HATER(!!!!)S OF CHILDREN, I am mostly interested in two particular arguments that I find off-base.

First, the comparison made between the federal government requiring that we get insurance and the requirements of each of the states that we get automobile insurance. Proponents of the legislation argue that of course the insurance mandate is okay because we already require auto insurance. There are three distinctions, though, of differing validity. I will approach them from least to most concretely valid.

  1. There is a difference between individual states and the federal government enacting such laws. Truthfully, I find this argument uncompelling for reasons I will discuss below. However, there is at least a theoretical difference between a state government and the federal government enacting such a provision. Namely, if a state government enacts the requirement, people are free to leave the state without leaving the country. Or, if all states choose to enact a provision or requirement (as with auto insurance requirements) there is a substantive argument that the public has spoken as opposed to the blue states forcing something down the neck of the red states or vice-versa.
  2. Drivers are not required to insure against damage to their own car the same way that a health insurance mandate would require is to insure against our own bodies. No state that I have lived in has required anything more than liability insurance. Right now, my Escort is not insured if I hit a light-post or another car. My car isn’t actually insured, but rather what my car hits is insured. For it to be comparable to a health insurance mandate, the state would be required me to insure my car against damage. I don’t know of any state where that is the case, though even if it is true in some state (a) we still revert back to #1 where the more local government made that decision for itself and (b) a whole lot of people that support liability insurance requirements would not support that move. So it’s not the “gotcha!” that a lot of proponents of the individual mandate suggest.

    The counterargument to this is that an individual mandate does protect other people because the uninsured are a drag on the system because they rack up health care bills that they cannot pay and the costs are passed along to everybody else. But this is far, far more indirect than the case that can be made for required auto insurance. Taken to its logical extension, it can be used to justify federal prohibition of any behavior that is unhealthy because the government (Medicare) is going to (partially) take care of us in our old age. That’s risky terrain even for those of us that are not of a particularly libertarian bent. In other words, this hands a substantial argument to those that would call this plan statist in nature.

  3. Nobody is required to purchase auto insurance. You’re only required to purchase auto insurance if you drive. True, it’s difficult to get by in this country without driving, but people do it every day. Further, when people agree to drive they are already committing themselves to a series of expenses and we can just add auto insurance onto the cost of the car, licensing, and so on. I suppose one could make the case that living costs money, too, but I would think that as a society we would be more willing to accept people being unable to drive because they cannot afford it far more willingly than we would accept people being unable to live because they cannot afford it.

None of the above is to say that a health insurance mandate is a bad idea. In fact, despite the above I personally support it in the abstract (even if I have reservations with regard to how it was implemented in this law). On balance, though, in any system in between a state-run or completely state-subsidized health care system and a completely Darwinian system that allows people to die on the emergency room steps unable to enter because they cannot afford to be stitched up is going to be better served by inducing or coercing people into getting health insurance. Disagree with that? Fair enough. You have my views and I have mine.

The second argument I find off-base is that an individual health insurance mandate is simply not something the federal government can do. It may be true that either (a) how this particular health care plan does it runs afoul the Constitution or (b) a “proper” reading of the Constitution (ie how you would read it) does not allow for such a thing, but the courts have already given the government enough latitude to be able to practically enforce an insurance mandate by giving the federal government control over taxation the way that they have. And if the mechanism used by the current law does prove to be unconstitutional, there is a relatively easy workaround at Congress’s disposal.

Because the federal government has the ability to set the tax code, all that is needed is “fine” people by raising taxes and then to make health insurance tax-deductible (up to a particular amount or in total). Whether it was envisioned by the Founding Fathers or by those that enacted an income tax in the first place is procedurally beside the point. Right or wrong, the courts have buckled by allowing the government to use taxation as a stick and carrot to promote desired behavior and discourage undesired behavior. If they can encourage home ownership through the tax code, they can “encourage” the purchasing of health insurance.

There are some legitimate questions as to whether or not the way the precise way that they are using taxes to punish those without health insurance is constitutional, but the notion that the federal government is incapable of punishing those that do not get health insurance is not, as far as I can see, true. They punish housing renters every day.

-{I realize that by even mentioning the health care law I have potentially opened a can of worms. Let’s try to avoid broader discussions as to whether this bill is on balance a good thing or a bad thing and any comment that accuses those with differing opinions of being dishonest, unintelligent, uninformed, or of moral integrity will be clipped or deleted.}-

Category: Statehouse

I’ve previously said that Microsoft could be doing themselves harm if they were ever really successful in fighting piracy because Windows and Office could lose their position as the standard if everybody that didn’t want to put down several hundred dollars had to go with a competitor instead. I think that’s true of Microsoft Office, though less so for Windows. Even back when I was saying that, the case for Windows was precarious. I was living in a computing ecosystem wherein most people I knew built their own computers. To the extent that I thought about it, I figured that homebrew computers would become more rather than less popular. Not only hasn’t that been true, but the trending has been in the other direction because people that used to build their own computers are increasingly turning to laptops.

So as Microsoft turns up the heat to stop Windows 7 piracy, it’s probably a good business move. Particularly since they’re doing so in a way that is leaving laptops unthreatened. At least, for my ThinkPad machines, I don’t have to mess so much with the activation hassle even if I am installing from an independent CD rather than anything given to me by Lenovo. ThinkPads could be unique in that regard, though I doubt it.

ZDNet’s Ed Bott has been exploring the world of Windows 7 piracy and the pack and forth between Microsoft and those that want to use its software without authorization. For Windows XP and before it was the case that once you got through, you were golden. Increasingly, Microsoft will keep throwing things out there and so would-be pirates will have to keep downloading and implementing new workarounds. Given the shady, often virus-infested world of software hacks, that can be kind of risky.

But will it induce people to go out and purchase legitimate copies and thus increase sales? I really don’t know that it will. It won’t lead to widespread defection to Linux or Apple, but people going out and buying shrinkwrapped copies of their software is not really where their market is. Their market is with people that buy Dells and HPs and Gateways and so on. And in those cases, they get paid by the manufacturer. I also don’t see a huge market for people upgrading their existing laptops. First off, for most people it’s not worth the trouble. Second, you have to pay $100-200 for the inconvenience. Third, successive versions of Windows typically require new hardware (though Win7 is an exception in this regard). Fourth, the people that are going to be most excited about the latest copies of Windows are either not going to be put-off by spending the money or they’re going to accept the inconveniences of regular authorization requirement sidesteps.

There are a few exceptions and places where it could be worth their while and lead to increased revenues. A minor example is the laptop I am typing on. It has a copy of Windows Vista on it. I am using Vista because Windows XP and Linux won’t work on this machine. Windows Vista and Windows 7 do. Since I had a spare license for the former, I went that route. Otherwise, I probably would have paid for Windows 7. Of course, I only know that Win7 works due to a temporary illegitimate installation. If they were to prevent that from happening, I wouldn’t buy Win7 because I wouldn’t know if it would work. A slightly more common example is if somebody needs to run a particular software application that requires the latest version of Windows. There was a stronger argument for that before people bucked Microsoft on Vista in favor of XP. I think that sent a message to developers not to assume everyone is going to upgrade (if such a message was ever needed).

The biggest and most credible area of increased profit, though, is that it does force people to buy into their price-discrimination scheme. If they put up absolutely no barriers, people would just buy the cheapest version of Win7 on their laptop and then install Windows 7 Ultimate, depriving Microsoft of money. Given the increase weight Microsoft is giving to price discrimination, I suspect that this is where they are coming from with their increased attempts at beefing up piracy-blocking mechanisms. I really don’t think it’s because of increased piracy because I think that, thanks to the domination of the laptop, piracy rates have actually gone down somewhat.

Of course, none of this applies to Microsoft Office. Office does not come with most PCs unless specifically ordered. The temptation to obtain an illegitimate copy is therefore greater. MS Office also widely discriminates on price, to boot. Office also sports a significant barrier to exit insofar as they control the file types most frequently used in businesses across the country. I had previously hoped that the one-two punch of Microsoft uprooting its file format and the emergence of OpenDocument Formatting would change this, but it hasn’t.

This whole business makes me want to find an alternative to Windows. Unfortunately, Apple just isn’t for me and Linux isn’t ready yet (if it ever will be). Or perhaps I just haven’t invested enough in the latter. While Microsoft has thus far done a reasonable job of gatekeeping, I fear that at some point they’re going to start a serious crackdown wherein the inconvenience and expense of some legitimate users will be considered acceptable collateral damage. When I switched from Microsoft Office to OpenOffice a couple years ago, my motivation was not money but rather was simply not having to worry about licensing at all. That’s one of the big draws of Linux. But since most of my computers these days are laptops and most laptops already come with Windows, it is thus far not really worth the effort. We’ll see if that changes.

Category: Server Room

In a follow-up to Sheila’s post about bikers, the story of some folks talking about their Lego-thieving habits while appearing on the Dr Phil show:

The couple was under investigation for shoplifting before the “Dr. Phil” appearance, but detectives did not suspect them of being large-scale thieves until they appeared on the show.

The show also aired a video of the couple’s three small children accompanying them on a three-day shoplifting binge.

The Eatons were arrested last September, nearly a year after they appeared on the show and claimed they made as much as $3,500 a week by selling stolen goods.

Interestingly, it took the cops a year or so to make the arrest.

Category: Courthouse
How Verizon lost my business and choosing between imperfect plans until the AT&T white knight comes riding into town

Since getting booted off AT&T, I am a free agent for the first time in my life when it comes to cell phone plans. Though each time I moved (up until the Cascadia move) I kept changing carriers, I always beelined to AT&T because I’ve always been reasonably satisfied with them and they’ve been the devil I’ve known. More recently I’ve decided to stick with AT&T because they use a GSM-SIM network and so I am not locked into a pre-authorized phone.

Now, of course, I am off AT&T for the time being. My initial thought was that I would walk straight over to Verizon. Verizon, of course, boasts the best network in the country. They also have the Motorola Droid phone. With Windows Mobile sadly going the way of the dodo, I have decided that Android is likely where I will depart to and the Droid is the gold standard right now for Android phones.

I had some trepidation about going over to Verizon. The main reason for this is that Verizon, like Sprint, uses CDMA phones. What that means is that if you buy one of their phones, you will never be able to use it on another network. This is in contrast to GSM networks, which are based on SIM cards that are transferrable from one carrier to the next. GSM carriers do tend to lock their phones down in an effort to prevent you from doing so, but for a small fee you can (with the exception of the iPhone) usually unlock the phone with minimal intrusiveness (compared to, say, jailbreaking an iPhone). Beyond that, though, you don’t have to buy a phone from the provider nor do you have to buy one associated with the provider. Verizon and Sprint, on the other hand, can much more easily refuse to activate any phone that isn’t theirs. As such, they can more-or-less require that you buy a phone from them (that won’t work for anyone else) for an outrageous price or for a lesser price with a burdensome contract.

In the end, though, I wasn’t going to let my ideology get in the way of practicality. I may not like the Verizon arrangement, but if they can offer me something that nobody else can (a national network, in this case, and the Droid), I’ll make due.

Three things changed my mind about Verizon. First, their rates are high. Much higher than any of the other carriers in the area. With the other carriers, it depends on what precisely you want as to whether or not it will cost you more or less than the others. Except Verizon, which is always higher. At least in my usage bracket. Second, and this is a relatively minor point, the Droid has some hardware/software limitations that my current phone does not and I am less enthusiastic about what was Verizon’s biggest selling point. And if I really want, I can get a Droid-equivalent SIM phone anyway.

The third thing was the biggest thing. I had been able to dismiss the practical sides of my ideological opposition to the way that Verizon does business by figuring that I can put up with a bad carrier and a required data plan for a one-year contract. But I then discovered that Verizon will not let you out of the data plan as long as you have a smartphone whether you are under contract or not. That means that if I ever want to get rid of my data plan (which I’m not sure I even want in the first place), I have to (a) get a new phone which requires a new contract, and/or (b) carry around a Pocket PC in addition to my cell phone. I did (b) for a while and I don’t want to go back to it because I am unreliable at remembering both and it’s my cell phone (the more important of the two) that I more typically forget. More than that, though, I resent being forced to make that choice. AT&T doesn’t make me do that unless they subsidize my phone (which is more than fair) and even then only the term of the contract. Nor do either of the other carriers.

The fourth and last thing that changed my mind about Verizon was finding out that AT&T is buying itself into my market. By the end of the year, they will have purchased Galaxy Mobile, one of the regional carriers, pending FTC approval. That means that the one year contract that Verizon requires would make it that much longer until I can switch back to AT&T when they come to town.

The other two options, however, both give me considerably more flexibility. Galaxy is being bought out by AT&T and so if I go with Galaxy I will be able to switch over to AT&T as soon as I want, assuming the sale goes through. In fact, I will be forced to switch. That’s the downside. Galaxy is presently a CDMA carrier and I would have to buy a phone just to use in the interim. To buy a Galaxy-compatible HTC Fuze (which is what I own now) will cost about $150 and Clancy’s phone will cost an additional $50. Or I can just get a cheapo phone to tide me over, but (a) I don’t know how long it will take before I can go back to my Fuze and (b) I’ll have to carry a Pocket PC and a cell phone in the meantime, which I don’t like and I’m not good at.

But of the three local carriers, it is Galaxy that had the best sales pitch. A good enough sales pitch that even if they weren’t bought out by AT&T, they would probably be getting my business despite the CDMA problem. Good rates and, despite the fact they are a regional company, national coverage.

On the other hand, Frontier Wireless is by far the most flexible option. Frontier not only uses SIM cards but doesn’t deal with locked phones at all. Clancy’s phone is already unlocked and it will cost less than $10 to unlock mine and I will be good to go with Frontier immediately. It is also a very local company, which I really like but which is also its greatest weakness. Frontier operates almost solely out of Arapaho and while they have national coverage, they discourage off network use. Any data plan I get with them would only cover Arapaho and have roaming fees everywhere else. That wouldn’t be an issue except that the times I most need a data plan is precisely when I won’t have it: when travelling. On the other hand, Frontier doesn’t care whether I have a data plan or not. I can use my Fuze as a Pocket PC, which Verizon won’t let me do at all and Galaxy will only let me do when out of my contract (in this case when they boot me over to AT&T).

So, while waiting on AT&T, I am debating between Galaxy and Frontier. It mostly comes down to whether I want a data plan or not. On the one hand, I lived without a data plan all the way up until late last year when I got one. On the other hand, I got kind of used to it. Back on the first hand, though, I’m not sure how useful it will be when I spend almost all of my time within a 5-minute drive home. It was most useful when I was traveling, which I did a lot of previously but am likely to do less of when Clancy starts work. Then there’s the question of my work. If I get work in Tupelo or with the Census Bureau, it will suddenly become much more useful. If I start software testing for OpenOffice at home, it won’t be very useful at all.

It’s odd to know exactly what I want (AT&T) and yet not be able to decide what I want (until AT&T comes to town). I guess I should be thankful that Verizon so graciously removed themselves from consideration.

Category: Market

-{Arriving home from dinner at the local Taco Trailer}-

Clancy: I think I’ve finally listened to enough Tom Petty that I have George Michael out of my head.

Trumwill: That’s good.

Clancy: You do know George Michael, right?

Trumwill: WHAM!

Clancy: Well, I was talking about his solo stuff. I heard some the other day and it’s been stuck in my head ever since.

Trumwill: I’m actually vaguely more familiar with him as a solo artist, too. I didn’t even know he was with WHAM! for the longest time. But I just wanted to give you a keyword to demonstrate that yes, I do in fact know who George Michael is. I thought about saying “Faith”, but I hate that song. WHAM! at least had that one song of his that I liked.

Clancy: I remember when I was in junior high and “I Want Your Sex” was a top single. Casey Kasum refused to say the name of the song.

Trumwill: Well, I’ve give George Michael credit for something. A lot of crap 80’s songs that were about sex tried to be all coy and eye-rollingly pseudo-clever about it. Michael at least came out with it.

Clancy: There is that, I suppose.

Trumwill: I still hated the song. I think the music that has come out since taught me that there’s something to be said for subtlety, even of the coy and eye-rolling variety.

Category: Theater

When I wrote previously here and on Ordinary Gents about playoffs, one of my objections was that a small playoff would become a large playoff and would render the regular season meaningless. I would not object too vociferously to an 8-team playoff, but anything beyond that and you’re letting in 9-3 teams. Since Division I-AA has 16 teams, I just cannot imagine that I-A would not get there in pretty short order and perhaps beyond. Playoff proponents argued that this does not necessarily have to be the case and that 8 will be enough. So I have to point out a couple things:

First, starting soon the I-AA will not have 16 teams. They’re upgrading to 20. This adds a whole other week to their playoffs for the inclusion of a measly 4 more teams. But at that level, nothing matters but the playoffs. So why not?

Second, college basketball, which had admirably stayed at 64 or 65 for quite some time, is now looking at 96. It’s hard to imagine that 128 is not far behind.

Category: Downtown