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Showing posts from September, 2013

Indiana Fever Advance to Eastern Conference Finals

The Indiana Fever have advanced to the Eastern Conference finals, after sweeping the Chicago Sky, 2 – 0, in a best-of-3 series. The first defeat happened this past Friday night when the Fever rolled over the Sky, 85 – 72, in front of a seriously-lacking hometown crowd. My kids and I watched the game on TV, and we were surprised by the lack of a crowd at the game.

We had a chance to watch the Fever on Sunday at Banker's Life Fieldhouse. My son and I were on a travel writing trip in Bloomington, and we were given the tickets at the last minute (courtesy of the Indiana Fever), so we cut our trip short, raced home, and ended up missing the first few minutes of the first quarter.

I had been communicating with Fever PR guy Kevin Messenger during the last home game of the season, asking him whether the team was looking more forward to facing Chicago or Atlanta in the first round of the finals. He said the Fever were 3 – 1 against the Sky in the regular season, but both teams were plagued…

Karl the Curmudgeon Hates Crickets

"Did you hear that?" asked Karl, leaning forward in his deck chair, eyes wide, searching.

Hear what? I asked.

"Listen," he hissed. "Crickets!"

Oh, I thought that was the laugh track to your jokes tonight, I said. Karl told me to what I could do with myself.

It's just crickets, man. What's the big deal?

"It's not just crickets, Kid. It's that cricket. Right there." He jabbed a finger at his yard. We were sitting on the back porch at his house. He had grilled a couple of steaks to celebrate the launch of his latest mystery novel, "Naked Came The Jaybird," and now we were sitting in the dark, drinking beer, and listening to the night noises.

Which Karl hated.

"It's just that one cricket, "he said, looking around as if the offending insect was about to stand up and identify himself. "He's been chirping like that for the last four nights. I can't find him, can't get him to stop." Karl rubbe…

Indiana Fever Playoff Scenario; Fever to Play NY Liberty Tonight

From the Indiana Fever PR folks and their pre-game notes:

A Fever win over the Liberty would be its fourth win in six games while sending New York to its fifth straight defeat. A loss would be Indiana’s second in-a-row.

Indiana is playing for the No. 3 seed in the upcoming Eastern Conference playoffs. Indiana has been eliminated from No. 2 seed consideration following its Tuesday loss to Washington.

Scenarios: If the Fever ties with the Washington Mystics (15-17), Indiana would win a head-to-head tiebreaker by virtue of its better conference record (currently 10-10 vs. 8-12). Both teams close the season against New York and Connecticut. A three-way tie for second place in the East still exists. In that scenario, Atlanta (17-15) would earn the No. 2 seed, by virtue of a better record (6-3) against the other two teams. Washington (4-5) would take the No. 3 seed and Indiana (3-5) would be seeded No. 4. Atlanta wins a two-way tie between the Fever and Dream, by virtue of the Dream’s …

Quiz Time: Guy, Gent, or Schlub?

A disturbing trend of male-ness is growing in this country, one that threatens to overwhelm all other forms of maledom, like a rampant fungus.

The Schlub.

We met Metrosexuals in the mid-90s, learned that Real Men Don't Eat Quiche in the early '80s, while Manly Men made a comeback in the early 2010s, mostly as a backlash against the Sensitive Man who became popular in the 90s. And the well-heeled Gentleman makes a quiet appearance any time there's a new James Bond movie, or suits make yet another comeback.

But the Schlub has always just sort of been there. The boring, bland suburbanite with all the excitement and verve of an oyster.

Which are you, a Guy, a Gentleman, or a Schlub? Take this easy quiz and find out.

1. It's time to buy a new car. You've done your research, talked to your friends, and test driven a few likely candidates. What are you going to buy?
a) A pickup truck with 4-wheel drive and all-terrain tires.
b) A high-performance sports car, preferably …

Indiana Fever Make Playoffs For 9th Consecutive Year

Banker's Life Fieldhouse went more than a little crazy on Saturday night when they defeated the Connecticut Sun, 69 – 60, and made the playoffs for the 9th consecutive year. Tamika Catchings had her usual all-star night, with 15 points, six rebounds, and four steals to help the Fever clinch a guaranteed fourth-place in the Eastern conference. If they stay in fourth, they will most likely face the Chicago Sun (assuming the Atlanta Dream doesn't surprise everyone in the last week of the season).

Erlana Larkins nipped at Catchings' heels with 12 points and six rebounds, and Jessica Breland had her own 12 points and nine rebounds. In fact, Breland's nine rebounds were the team high last night. Only Sun forward Mistie Bass did better in the whole game, with 11.

(Update: Jessica Breland was released on Thursday this week, after Katie Douglas was cleared to play. She will return to Friday's game against the New York Liberty. While everyone has missed Douglas, I wish there…

The Dinner Club

"Sorry we're late," said Allison, sitting down. "The sitter was late, and Andy couldn't find his phone."

"Yeah, I left the goshdarn thing in my car," said Andy. He and Allison chuckled at his absent-mindedness.

"No problem," mumbled Claire, well into her third glass of wine.

"Don't you think you've had enough," said Bender, reaching for Claire's glass. She jerked away.

"I'm fine!" She took another sip. "I just had a pretty stressful day at work."

"How's work going, Claire?" asked Allison.

"S'fine," said Claire. "We're putting together a defense for our client the chem manufacturer against some whiny farmers who say our fertilizer is poisoning their drinking water, or some crap."

"I thought they were going to settle that," said Bender.

"Since when do you care about my work?!"

"You told me the client was going to settle for a co…