If you read only one blog full of ranting and raving about sports (local and otherwise), movies, TV shows, miscellaneous pop culture, life and other assorted flotsam and jetsam, make it this one!

Saturday, September 26, 2015

Sometimes I Love Dumb People

Presented without further comment...from me, at least...


The Onion article in question...plus a bonus!

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Craigslist Follies! Or, How I Sold Some Papal Tickets

The Phillies gave this card out to
fans one night recently.
(If you're offended by foul language, you should be warned that towards the end of this post, there are a few nasty words.)

In case you haven't heard, perhaps because you've been visiting relatives on the moon, Pope Francis is coming to Philadelphia this weekend for the World Meeting of Families. It's an event I have no interest in. It's been extremely overhyped, whether because of security plans or just because of things like the item you see on the left. And most of the news coverage is either fluff (mostly ignoring the Philadelphia archbishop's extremist anti-gay bigotry or support for child-molesting priests over their victims) or downright useless. There are three public events at which Francis is appearing: a speech on Independence Mall, a Mass on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway and the "Festival of Families," featuring host Mark Walhberg and performances by Aretha Franklin, among others. After some confusion, it was announced that certain areas closest to the front would require tickets for admission. The tickets would be free, but they would be distributed online.

Although the demand for SEPTA's special weekend passes turned out to be nonexistent, the event tickets were snapped up in minutes. But with lots of clicking on the "refresh" button on my browser window I somehow managed to get four tickets each to the Papal Mass and the Festival of Families.

Having no real desire to be in the crowd for either event or go through security checkpoints, I decided to sell the tickets on Craigslist and see what I could get. Unlike most of the ads, I didn't request a specific price. I just said that people could make an offer and if I accepted, I'd send them my email address for PayPal and email the PDF documents when I received the payment. The first couple of days I got a couple of nibbles but no one followed through. I also had the post flagged for removal a few times by people who either took offense or just wanted to eliminate competition for their own tickets. Naturally, I just re-posted the ad each time.

Today, whoever was flagging them got more intense. At least three times my ad was deleted between overnight and mid-afternoon today. Then one of the people doing the flagging emailed a reply, perhaps by accident, because it seemed to be written to someone else.  He wrote: "Another scam. Will try to shut it down." I decided to reply, and I kind of didn't hold back: "NOT A SCAM, YOU FUCKING PIECE OF SHIT! WHO THE FUCK DO YOU THINK YOU ARE?"

He replied with: "i can flag or we can meet to buy the tickets and then i can show you my badge and take it downtown. what will it be?" Yeah. Like he's a real cop or something. I wrote back: "Right. Who's scamming now?" (Interestingly, while in the middle of this my ad was still active and I was making a sale!)

He wrote again: "Stealing from religious pilgrims. Ask yourself if its worth it." I replied: "Not stealing at all. No one's forcing anyone to pay for them, you sanctimonious prick." He wrote back one more time, saying "You took those ticks from others for your own greed. You can't justify your actions." Instead of going back and forth, I flagged him. Each mail sent through Craigslist's relay system includes a link to "Please flag unwanted messages (spam, scam, other)" -- including mail that is "annoying/inappropriate/abusive." Boom.

First, ticks? Ewwwww. Second, there's no law against selling something you legitimately own. I didn't steal the tickets. I followed the process to get them. It's not my fault I was lucky for two out of three events. Third, as I said, I didn't demand a particular price. One woman said she was willing to pay $100 for two tickets ($50.00 each) to the Mass. I accepted (once she used the right email address in PayPal). The other buyer (the one going on during the email exchange) offered $100 for two Mass tickets and two Festival tickets (or $25.00 each) and I accepted his offer as well. And I'm not a bit sorry. I'm far from being in great financial shape, even before the medical bills from the last three months started rolling in, and even the fact that I go back to work for LIHEAP on Tuesday won't dramatically change that.

Hey, even though I'm not placing any more ads on Craigslist -- well, except one more, see below --there's still time to snap up the last two Festival tickets for Saturday night. :)

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

My Sports Tees And Miscellaneous Caps, Part 5

Two more caps, then four t-shirts -- one from each team, in part for reasons explained below.

On the left is a Camden Riversharks hat I bought last week at a game for $5. They may not be in Camden next year. The cap on the right is pretty self-explanatory.

Also self-explanatory. Took me a while to find one for sale at a good price, though.

Because the NFL has returned, I resume my wearing of an Eagles shirt on game days (I've had this particular shirt for quite a few years). Didn't work out so well last night. That was a really pathetic performance in so many ways, in a game that was very winnable.

A giveaway that's become a regular thing, The home opener (barring unusual circumstances such as a world championship) is a 3:05 pm start on a weekday. After a day off (in case it rains on Opening Day) the next game is often designated "Opening Night" and a t-shirt is given out. Of course, they aren't commemorating pennants now...

One of the few 76ers items I own, bought from the clearance rack at Modells some time ago. Sadly, Moses Malone just passed away. What a rare feat: he was acquired to put the Sixers over the top and win a championship, and he did it in his first season. Even Pete Rose's first Phillies team, in 1979, missed the playoffs before winning it all in 1980. Rest in peace, Moses, and thank you.

Monday, September 14, 2015

Some Recent Street Art Pics

These are pics I took recently on various wanderings around town...

The amazing Kid Hazo installed this, as you can probably guess. Unfortunately, by the time I got there the fake cameras were taken down.

Most of the stickers I spot are in places like Center City. This is actually on Frankford Avenue near Linden, not far from my house.

These next few, including the WRDSMTH works above, are in the vicinity of South Street. (A shame one of them ha been tagged). I was looking for another Kid Hazo work that was there, but once again I got there after it was already removed.

Above is a work from another of my favorites, Joe Boruchow. Sad that it's been tagged by graffiti.

This last one I found on my way to the Fringe Festival's Opera Philadelphia/Bearded Ladies collaboration, "Andy: A Popera."  (Highly recommended if you can get a ticket for any of the remaining shows, but I think it's pretty much sold out.) I don't remember exactly where this fence was but I think it's on Front Street, under the El, somewhere between Berks St. (where I got off the El) and Oxford Avenue (where I turned from Front St. to go to the venue for the show).

The Linc: Dawkins, Turbines

I've been slipping a bit lately on here, so in honor of the start of the Eagles' season, here's another post I'm moving here from the photo blog. In November 2012 I was at a Temple football game at Lincoln Financial Field (hey, Temple finally beat Penn State and they're 2-0 this year!), when I took these pictures. In 2012 the Eagles retired the number of Brian Dawkins...

...and, because I noticed them, I took a pic of the wind turbines atop the Linc...

The Eagles are big on generating their own energy and being environmentally friendly, and since the turbines went up, they've also added a lot of solar panels, many of them in the parking lots (serving as cover for cars as well as pulling in the sunlight).

Monday, September 7, 2015

Neshaminy State Park

Here's something about my Twitter use: I don't "favorite" tweets because I actually like them. If I enjoy them that much I retweet, with or without an added comment. I use favorites as sort of bookmarks to refer to later. If I can't or don't want to immediately open a link in a tweet (for example, if I'm out and there's a link to YouTube and I don't want to play it then, or if I'm trying to catch up on my Twitter feed and don't want to stop to read an article), I make it a favorite and return to it later.

So check out the date of this tweet I favorited:

I saw this and decided I wanted to check out this view.

It took me over a year. I finally managed to get to the park last month. It's not easily accessible by public transit. But with my new status as a morning person who gets out and does things, on a recent Sunday I made the trek. And I did see a view of the skyline, although I'm not sure I was at this Logan Point. I actually walked down to the river and walked along the shoreline.The maps on the park website indicate that Logan Point is part of a paved walkway, while I went right down to the beach. Also, it's so far away that I wouldn't call it "incredible," although maybe it looks different from the actual Logan's Point vantage. Still, it is pretty cool to be able to see downtown Philadelphia from such a distance. So here are some of the pics I took...

I feel like I need to get back there on a less hazy, hot and humid afternoon...and also to find the Logan's Point view tweeted about by Visit Philly.

I'm not sure if this is some sort of art, of refers to these tracks, which I'm guessing were used to launch boats onto the river.

This is a panorama shot I tried. With the river in constant motion, it looks really, really weird.

And here's a look across the river at New Jersey. (Not actually a panorama shot -- I just cropped out everything above and below.)

Back in the park, it turns out the Eagles have helped out with planting new trees and some educational signs.

Near the end of one of the picnic areas, some trees have been carved up.

I'm not quite sure what this project is/was supposed to be, but here are some pics from inside the walls...

Panorama again.

This old place is on the grounds as well...

...and so is this little theater.

Of course, the pool is popular on a hot summer day.