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24 posts from May 2007

May 18, 2007

Sammie Smith moves on

Aaasammie      Caught up with former Dolphins running back Sammie Smith for the first installment of Lost & Found, an occasional series of where-are-they-now type columns. Think I'll try to do one a month or so. You'd find the first one here.

     Sammie's life has had enough drama and calamity to fill a country song, but he seems in a good spot right now. I'm happy for him, but am curious how Dolfans regard him after all these years.

     (By the way, thanks to all who have chimed in with suggested future subjects for Lost & Found. Keep 'em comin'. Drop names to gcote@miamiherald.com)

May 16, 2007

Yankee hating: The National Pastime

6     AaayhYou'd knowAaayh2 from today's column by me (find it here) that I revel in the Yankees struggling. Hey don't take it personally! It isn't only Red Sox fans who enjoy this hobby.

     Inviting comments here on why it's so much fun when the Yankees are losing. Also would entertain thoughts from NY fans, who I assume by now are more amused than outraged by what I'm sure they see (and perhaps accurately, I'd admit) as plain jealousy.

Rude drivers, Dwyane's surgery, Suns sinking and more...

     A few quick hits for a wonderfully wet Wednesday in So-Fla..

Aaarr2_2       AaarrA survey by the group AutoVantage has named Miami drivers the rudest in America. In response the City of Miami Visitors Bureau issued a statement today calling the survey "a [bleep]ing piece of [bleep]" while laying on the horn, offering a single-digit salute and threatening to beat the crap out of AutoVantage.

     Heat star Dwyane Wade underwent what was called successful surgery on his shoulder and knee yesterday. My question: Have you ever heard a doctor or hospital announce that an athlete's surgery was unsuccessful?

     Hey maybe the Marlins need to sit that Cabrera guy more often.

Aaaloren      Sophia Loren has told Italy's Gazzetta dello Sport she will do a strip tease on national TV if her favorite soccer club, Naples, earns promotion. Umm, you're 72. How 'bout we skip the national TV and confine it to the apartment? Blinds drawn, per favore.

     Suns fans are crying foul, and I feel bad for Phoenix on those two suspensions, but the NBA rule on not leaving the bench area is clear and well-known. The issue shouldn't be selectively applying the rule. The rule needs changing. Who cares if a player "leaves the immediate vicinity of the bench" if he does no harm to anyone?

     Heat picks No. 20 in June's NBA Draft. Point guards rated closest to there in ESPN.com's latest Top 100: Texas A&M's Acie Law (14th), Georgia Tech's Javaris Crittenton (19th), USC's Gabe Pruitt (24th).

     Finally: Headlines You Never Thought You'd See, another in a series.

May 15, 2007

Ask the Blogmaster General (May)

   Aaaq     [The Blogmaster General questions window has nicked shut for May. Lukewarm this month, but we'll nevertheless try it again mid-June].

     Man, time flies when you're making fun. Seems like we just did this, but it's time again for our mildly semipopular mid-month feature, in which I directly answer any questions you may have.

     YAaaq3ou know the daily give-and-take here is your forum. But once a month I invite and reply to your Q's on a variety of topics including but not limited to: Me, this blog, my columns, sports writing, The Miami Herald, other media, local teams, national stories, cricket, '60s TV, current events, pop culture, cooking and singing on the radio.

     Any questions you've asked of me in the Aaaq2daily blogs that have gone rudely unanswered -- now is the time and this is the place. I'll check back periodically throughout the next couple of days and reply with the exactitude and alacrity you have come to expect.

May 14, 2007

Peeing to support your team, and much, much more...

     Miscellania for a Monday Monday, so good to me...

     A new website call peeyourpantsforthebrewers.com is taking Aaapeee pledges by Brewers fans who vow to urinate without benefit of a bathroom break if Milwaukee makes the playoffs. Would I participate in something like that? Depends! There were more than 3,000 pledges when last I checked, and I only wish I were kidding. Hey c'mon, South Florida! Are we going to let Milwaukee upstage us? Can't somebody start "defecateforthedolphins.com" or something?

     That reminds me. A "game-worn" jock strap used by Brian Urlacher is for sale on eBay. The question is who should be more embarrassed: The buyer? Or the seller?

     Disgruntled Brett Favre was making trade-demand noise before apparently calming down. I'll pose this as a pure hypothetical: Would you take Brett or Trent Green for a year in The Battle of Fading Arms?

     So far in the Spurs-Sun series Steve Nash has taken a forehead to the nose and a knee to the groin. Waiting for my friends at bodog.com to provide odds on the next body part to be hit.

     Josh Beckett was 7-0 as he left the Red Sox game with that recurrance of the finger problem that plagued him here. Not often you can say a blister halted a blistering start. (Sorry).

     World Extreme Cagefighting on the cover of ESPN The Magazine? Please! Chuck Liddell is a lot of things, including somebody I'd want on my side in a bar fight. But an athlete? Nah.

     I'm an avid bad golfer, around a 20 handicap. Limped in at 94 the other day at Arrowhead despite a birdie and six pars, which is pretty good for me. Why? How about a nine on a par 3?! Seriously. So I can relate to Sean O'Hair's quadruple 7 on 17 at The Players. I love the excellence on the PGA Tour, but also the occasional lapses that prove these guys human after all.

     Fact: U-Georgia women's golf coach Todd McCorkle has been forced to resign after showing his team an explicit Paris Hilton sex tape. My speculation: Players began to suspect things weren't right when McCorkle seemed to be a little too excited extolling the virtues of the titanium shaft.

     Headlines You Thought You'd Never See, one in a series. And, finally: Other People Making Me Seem Smart, Which Isn't Easy.

May 12, 2007

Get off Ricky's back!

     You know by my column in today's paper (find it here) that I take a rather sympathetic view to Ricky Williams and his latest test-positive for marijuana. I think I am in the minority, however. I know many of you feel strongly in the opposite extreme.

     Send a message to Ricky here. A goodbye, as it were. Is it good riddance? Is it good luck? What would you tell Ricky if you could?

May 11, 2007

Ricky's reported test-positive and more...

     A dose of miscellania for a fulgent Friday in South Florida, which recently was named The Sports Capital of the Lower Part of Florida...

     ESPN.com's Chris Mortensen is reporting today (find it here) that Aaarick Ricky Williams will not be permitted to apply for reinstatement until September because he tested positive for marijuana in April. Say it ain't so, Erick! If it is, I can't blame the Dolphins for the hands-off attitude. Glad my column earlier this week advocating a fair shot for Daunte Culpepper and Ricky Williams included that caveat about Ricky staying divorced from Mary Jane.

Aaadirk      It's being reported Dirk Nowitzki will win the NBA's MVP award. Based on his shrunken performance in the playoffs, the trophy may be bigger than the man accepting it.

     Today's column by me (find it here) is on the Barry Bonds dilemma, written from the Marlins game with that local perspective. You're at a game and Bonds is announced. How do you react?

Aaa8      Dale Earnhardt Jr. leaving Dale Earnhardt Racing? That's like Colonel Sanders leaving KFC. Dale Earnhardt Sr. is spinning in his grave right now, clocked at 186.254 mph. 

     A documentary premiers Saturday about the life and death of Miami Stadium. It may be a final indication they have officially run out of good ideas for documentaries.

     A handful of baseball teams have now banned alcohol from their clubhouses. That's been a trend in pressboxes for several years. It may be why I've become so cranky.

     Rickey Henderson wants to make a comeback but I'm not liking his chances. Didn't Rickey used to babysit Roger Clemens?

Aaawhoopee      On Pardon the Interuption the other day Tony Kornheiser said, "Did Eva Longoria ban Tony Parker from making whoopee during the playoffs?" Thus becoming the first person since 1956 to refer to sex as "making whoopee."

Aaanaked      Finally: "This is your last warning! I will never, ever visit your blog again if you don't show a photo of a 70-foot inflatable naked man."

May 10, 2007

Give Daunte, Ricky a fair chance

Aaa1     You know how I feel.  The Dolphins seem disinclined to welcome back Daunte Culpepper or Ricky Williams for a fair shot to make the team and that's absurd. I say so in today's column that you'd find here.

     Now what do you say?

May 09, 2007

O.J. is denied service. Fair?

Aaaoj_3       While in Louisville for the Kentucky Derby, Miami's own O.J. Simpson entered a restaurant and was refused service by the owner, related to the 1994 double-murder trial and Simpson's behavior since. Find the story here.

     Now Simpson's lawyer is claiming racism and a threatening a suit.

     Beyond the legalities, is it fair to still ostracize Simpson so long after his acquittal on criminal charges? Does his being found liable in the civil trial justify it?

     Put another way: In this matter are you closer to feeling bad for Simpson or to congratulating the owner?

On race and Bonds, Amanda in Playboy, Borel at the White House and more...

     A full trough of stuff for a dog-day Wednesday in South Florida...

     (*) ESPN is now available on select screens at filling stations. Is that new? Stuart Scott has been giving me gas for years.

     (*) ABC News poll finds 75 percent of African-Americans are rooting for Barry Bonds to surpass Hank Aaron but only 28% of whites are. Wasn't the racial divide similar on the O.J. verdict? If faith and forgiveness are divine, my African-American brothers may be saints.Aaaamanda2

Aaaamanda       (*) U.S. Olympic swimmer Amanda Beard (left) has agreed to pose in Playboy. Anybody got a problem with that?

     (*) How about the acrid haze from those Everglades fires? I haven't been around this much second-hand smoke since the 1970s. Whatever happened to bongs, by the way? Not that I know what they are. But I've heard of them.

     (*) Sorry to be mean, but something about Kentucky Derby-winning jockey Calvin Borel,Aaaborel the barely literate Cajun, reminds me of the banjo player in Deliverance. Borel was invited to dine at the White House the other night. It may have been the first time in awhile George W wasn't the dumbest guy in the building.

     (*) Need a reminder why the Marlins are fun even around .500? The new Sports Illustrated nominates the 10 best players under 25. Miguel Cabrera is No. 1 and Hanley Ramirez is fourth.

     (*) Warren Sapp has lost 49 pounds. Isn't that like the beach losing a pail of sand?

     (*) You see the big fight the other night? I don't mean Mayweather over De la Hoya. I mean Tony Parker's forehead beating Steve Nash's nose by a TKO.

     (*) Please tell me we aren't headed for a Detroit-San Antonio Finals, by the way. Forget the announcers. That series would require an anesthesiologist.

     (*) Weird. I just looked up "quicksand" in the dictionary and saw a picture of Tracy McGrady stuck in the first-round of the playoffs.

     (*) Head Gator Billy Donovan might be leading the Memphis Grizzlies today if they'd agreed to give him full control. This should officially pre-empt any future Billy-to-Heat speculation as long as power-holding (and power-deserving) Pat Riley is el prez.

     (*) Apparently Michelle Wie is thinking of giving up men. No I mean competing in PGA Tour events.

Aaaprostate      (*) Miller Park in Milwaukee was giving out free prostate exams the other night. I remember when that team was so bad every night at a Brewers game felt like a prostate exam.

     (*) Paris Hilton is going to jail, but it's OK. She's arranged to stay in the Martha Stewart Suite.

     (*) Finally: You know what I feel like doing? I feel like taking that dead possum over there and dressing him up in a nice hat!