Nothing Is Easy Stand Up Trash Talk

All the hibernating troll things rearing their ugly heads and popping up lately somehow caused me to go back to very old Tull. So, fault me if you want, but we will start and end there this weekend. Nothing is easy.

If you never saw the traveling minstrel circus that was Jethro Tull live in the 70’s, you really missed something. I was already thinking about this before talking to one of our mates here with a wife who is an accomplished flautist. We will get to football in a moment, but the lead today is going to be music.

Back to Tull. I am old. I have seen most everybody. Jethro Tull was ridiculously incredible. And, yet, not an act that even I think about regularly. Go figure. That in spite of how good Ian Anderson was, and even more Martin Barre on guitar. Their talent was insane, and the rest of the band was close if not equal. It is one thing to hear their music, but like Pink Floyd, seeing it play out in front of you live is better than you could possibly hope for or imagine. No way to really describe it. Alright, we will start off with a cut from Stand Up. Then we shall see where we end up.

Okay, college football is dormant still. Unless you live near Tempe Arizona, where the Herm Edwards project is turning out to be an even bigger cock-up joke than people like me thought it was from moment one. Seriously, ASU and their brain trust of Ray Anderson, are making Pee Wee Herman look like Vince Lombardi. I have never been more embarrassed for ASU football in my life. Never.

As to the Pros, Denver blistered Da Bears in a yawner Thursday night. Brock Osweiller is still the best quarterback on the Donkos, and that is a problem for them.

Today – Saturday! – we have two games. Bears at Kittehs is first up. Lions are seriously hurt with injuries. But not enough to lose to the Bears. Chargers at Chiefs is second up to bat. Not THAT is a game. Chefs are a better team, but I like Rivers and the Bolts here.

On Sunday, and it may not ultimately matter, but the Dolphins at Bills might be pretty interesting. Personally, I really care and will be focused on the return of Aaron Rodgers in Carolina against a seemingly resurgent Panthers and Cam Newton. Even if the Pack wins out, I am not sure they get into the playoffs at this point. May suck, but that is how it is.

There are only two games that have real national interest. Scribe will love this, but the most critical one is absolutely Pats at Steelers. If you just read history, you take Bill Bel, Brady and the boys every time. I don’t think so right now. The Stillers just have too much jam at home tomorrow. Now, assuming the Pats return there for the playoffs, that is quite another thing. But tomorrow, I like Steel City.

The other is Rams at Seattle. The Rams have been both consistent and resilient this year. Nobody predicted that. I admire what they have done. They are for real. But, man, it is crunch time and this is in Seattle. That is brutal. I’ll take the Squawks. Cards at Skins might be interesting to watch, even if not of any significance.

And so we close with more Tull. Again, a seriously incredible act over a very long time. If you never got the opportunity to see them back in the day, go google a U-Tube of one of the old concerts and watch it. Was great. And Martin Barre remains one of the greatest under appreciated guitarists in rock history. And, today, a little love for flautists, some of whom are quite important here. Get the lead out, and get the roll on.

29 replies
  1. Bay State Librul says:

    It was jockey John Velazquez who said: “You’re expecting something is going to happen, if it happens, it’s brilliant. If it doesn’t happen, you’re a bum.”

    My vote is that the Steelers will bum out.

    Your prognosis is not entirely without merit: Take your jam and mix with it with TB12, and it may protect you against Gronk and Hogan, but I don’t think so


    • bmaz says:

      I am less confident about tomorrow than I am about a return if and when it counts. The Pats love home cooking, but they can play on the road. They might have to. So be it.

  2. Jim White says:

    Tonight is the national championship match in volleyball. Mary Wise’s Gators take on Nebraska in the wilds of Kansas City. Should the Gators win, Wise will be the first female head coach to win a volleyball national championship. Kind of hard to imagine. They’ve been doing the national thing for over 35 years, I think, so it’s long overdue for a woman head coach of a women’s team to win it all.

    I still refuse to watch any NFL games while Kaepernick remains in exile.

  3. Ed Walker says:

    And the sand-castle virtues are all swept away
    In the tidal destruction the moral melee
    The elastic retreat rings the close of play
    As the last wave uncovers the newfangled way


    Thick as a Brick

    When I have a big cooking project, I put it on while chopping and slicing.

  4. quebecois says:

    Tull is band I saw from the Aqualung tour until the mid eighties. Their Thick as a Brick show was a prog spoof like none other. I can’t imagine playing those two sides while they were goofing off on stage the way they were doing. They were truly gifted and worked hard at it. Still, I liked Gentle Giant more. 12 years ago, I met Gary Green at a prog fest in PA. I was lucky enough to shoot him on many occasions since 2009. Here’s a set from québec city in 2010, the band is called Three Friends. Hope you enjoy.

  5. Bay State Librul says:

    Head to head, fan to fan.

    Someway, somehow, Scribe will invoke the Cheatin’ rule, Spygate and Deflategate, but don’t believe him. There will only be a Patriot’s floodgate today.

    “This is epic. It’s a classic clash of football cultures,” the Shank writes. “The Patriots do things quietly. The Steelers are loud. Bill Belichick and the Patriots pretend it’s just another game. Mike Tomlin and the Steelers go into Hype Overdrive.”

    Yeah, Scribe will be in rare form today, promoting his team, boosting their merchandise, hoping Big Ben’s interceptions won’t decrease his QB rating. Don’t believe him.

    I’ve been a fan since Butch Songin and Babe Parilli quarterbacked the Boston Patriots in the AFL glory days.

    Patriots 35-24.

    Enjoy the game.



  6. Trent says:

    My dad fiddled around with the flute and never could get with rock n roll. I always threatened to make him a mixed tape with Tull and others.

    Falcons need a 3-0 run to win division. I think they can handle The Bucs on Monday but not so sure about the Saints or Panthers to close. I’d take 2 of 3 and a sweep of the possessed Gary Payton.

    I saw some comments on cryptocurrency transaction prices in another thread, but no links or substantive support to interrogate. Anyone know of an intelligent, insightful blog on block chain technology?

    • bmaz says:

      Flute work, and flautists, is/are a severely underrated thing. Tull may be a great example, but only one of many. Do you know Herbie Hancock?

      There is a lot of built in appreciation for flautists here though. Some things come closer to home.

  7. scribe says:

    Well, it’s the day which was circled on the calendar months ago, within minutes of King Roger releasing the schedule to the world.

    I’m not in my best scribbling mode, having just returned to my living room after a day-plus on the road, burning fuel, rubber and asphalt to get here, all that following weeks out of town for work, living out of a suitcase and eating … not well. I made the last 350 miles in under 6 hours. How much under, I won’t tell you. I just hope I don’t doze off during The Game out of sheer exhaustion.

    I had a lot of thoughts about the Patsies (Cheatin’ Bill and his Cheating Cheaters of Cheatertown to you) coming into the Ketchup Bottle to face my Stillers, thoughts I wanted to share. But it all comes down to this: the most violent, most focused football team will win this game. We have Steelerweather, but they get that in Noo England so that’s a wash*. Beyond that, don’t discount the motivational effects of Ryan Shazier’s injury (about which we’ve heard precious little other than “he’s starting physical therapy”), the drubbing the Pats took Monday (with a ‘fins player celebrating a score by mock-deflating a football), and the returns of Gronk and JuJu.

    Clash of the Titans, indeed.

    Other than that, I have little to add. I want to unpack, get the laundry done, and make some food.
    – – –
    * FWIW, some relatives attended the Bills’ Snow-globe game last week. They related that, if you thought the game was wild on video, it was orders of magnitude crazier in person. Sounds like fun to me.

  8. lefty665 says:

    Cards and ‘Skins the ineffective vs the inept. My money’s on the Cards. The ‘Skins have been finding ways to lose, it’s what they’re best at. With replacements for the replacements, it’s been a tough year for the ‘Skins, not that the Cards have been injury free either.

  9. posaune says:

    For EW,  detective & profiling gifts per mr. posaune:

    Get the Truth: Former CIA Officers Teach You How to Persuade Anyone to Tell All, Philip Houston
    Spy the Lie: Former CIA Officers Teach You How to Detect Deception, Philip Houston
    Find Out Anything From Anyone, Anytime: Secrets of Calculated Questioning From a Veteran Interrogator, James Pyle
    What Every BODY is Saying: An Ex-FBI Agent’s Guide to Speed-Reading People Paperback, Joe Navarro 

    Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy Le Carre DVD set with Alec Guiness (follows Navarro’s techniques to extraordinary degree)

    • Peterr says:

      Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy Le Carre DVD set with Alec Guiness (follows Navarro’s techniques to extraordinary degree)

      I think you’ve got it backwards. LeCarre published TTSS in 1974, when Navarro was only 21 years old. If anyone did the following, it was Navarro following LeCarre.

      That said, TTSS is incredible.

  10. Jim White says:

    Well, the Gators came up short last night in volleyball. I do so hope Mary Wise gets a national championship before retiring.

    This afternoon was Lisa’s holiday concert for her flute ensemble. As I left, I got in my truck and when the radio fired up, Classic Vinyl was playing Aqualung. A perfect cap on the day.

  11. scribe says:

    I was about ready to write a post damning Todd Haley for having Ben hand off to Bell when the Pats knew it was coming, leading to a three-and-out, a punt, and Brady taking the Pats down the field for what turned out to be the winning score.

    Haley does deserve to rot in Hell, given that his play-calling is the offensive equivalent of a prevent defense, i.e., one which prevents you from winning.

    But let’s set that aside because there will be plenty of time for that later.

    Let’s talk about the final Pittsburgh series of the game.  More particularly Jesse James’ touchdown.  In any world other than one where Roger Goodell is commissioner, his touchdown would have counted, Brady and Co., trailing by 4, would have taken the kickoff with not much time left, and who knows what they would have done with it.  But King Roger the Clown is King here, so we have no way of knowing what is a catch, and what is not.  And his minions take a clean catch, where the receiver broke the plane with the ball steady in his hands (which is supposed to stop everything) and then rotated it (inside the end zone) on the ground, and turn it into an incompletion.

    Not since Stacy Koon’s defense attorneys took the video of him beating the shit out of Rodney King has there been such a warped result of video review.  I remember the CLE courses on how to manipulate video evidence to get the result you want, or avoid the one you don’t.  Parse it frame by frame.  Deprive each frame of context.  Drag an instant of time out into hours.  And that’s what we got here.

    The League acts all mystified when they look at their falling ratings.  The end of today’s Steelers game is Exhibit A for why people are not watching football.  People like me, who’ve loved football for 50 years or more, are turning the dial because (1)(a) it’s impossible to know whether a catch really is a catch, and (b) there is no consistency in the application of a wildly subjective “rule” by idiots who are accountable to no one, and (2) the fucking video review destroys the flow of the game time and time again, maybe 5 or 10 times in a single game.  The fans’ emotional involvement and excitement gets pissed away while we wait for some dimwit to watch video.  The stadium goes silent.

    Fuck the NFL.

    You won’t hear this on the TV interviews, where the line will be “they applied the rule … we should have played harder …” or some similar anodyne bullshit.  Roger will take their money if they call him out.

    I’ll probably watch my Steelers, but I have little interest in anything beyond that.

    And I won’t be watching once the powers that be maneuver them out of the playoffs.

    • bmaz says:

      As Steely and Dan would say, the hangman aint hanging, gonna have to go back, Jack, and do it again.

      Football fans will be robbed if the Steelers and Pats do not play for the AFC Championship. I think they may still will, though have not really checked the bracketology of it all yet.

      Today was an interesting wrinkle though.


    • Peterr says:

      I was about ready to write a post damning Todd Haley . . .

      Haley does deserve to rot in Hell, given that his play-calling is the offensive equivalent of a prevent defense, i.e., one which prevents you from winning.

      There’s a large group of folks in KC who will back you up 100% on your second statement, and they could give you more than a few ideas for that post in your first statement.


    • phred says:

      Just chiming in to say, “hear, hear”.  That was a bullshit call (sorry BSL, but it was).  Furthermore, the TD by Carolina that shouldn’t have been was ridiculous, too.  And then there is the ongoing problem of what-the-hell-is-pass-interference these days?!?!?


      Someone needs to send a memo to the NFL, that a big part of the fun of watching the game is knowing the rules and following along at home.  After decades of watching and learning the game, I have no idea what the rules are.  So why bother?


      All of that said, life has largely curtailed my NFL viewing habits, and my attendance here has been sporadic for a long time now, but I would like to wish the local denizens a very happy holiday season!  Lets hope 2018 is a decided improvement over 2016 & 2017…

      • Bay State Librul says:

        I agree.

        Hockey has made better changes to improve fan enjoyment, and The Sox still play “Sweet Caroline”

        Having said that, I’ll take the tainted V, and Boo new Yankee Manager Boone.




  12. CTuttle says:

    Some wild calls on the field today, to be sure…!

    A folded piece of paper determining a 1st down, on a crucial 4th down in the Boyz/Raiduhs game, and, the Stillers getting robbed on a bad rule, amongst a slew of other examples…!

    Btw, bmaz, it was the Colts my Donkos beat on Thursday, not Da Bears(“Denver blistered Da Bears in a yawner”)…! ;-)

  13. Bay State Librul says:

    Stun, Stunned, Stunning.

    A Real 60 Minutes Show Stopper on Sunday Night

    “Compelling and relentlessly entertaining for the first 57 minutes, writes Chad Finn, “and downright unfathomable for the final three.”

    Bmaz gets it right, let’s have an instant replay in January.

    Meanwhile, the ruling on the field stands

    No it crumbles.

    Jesse James caught red-handed, his crime, “failure to break the plane.”

    In football lingo, a felony. You must hold onto the ball first, and then run like hell, or just maybe toddle over the goal line.

    You want more drama?

    To spike or not to spike, but don’t ask Big Ben (BB-7)
    Don’t clock it! Run a play!
    Who yelled that fucking dictum?
    Game over.

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