Monday, October 22, 2007

Yeah, I Know The Red Sox Won, But I Wrote This Earlier

As I write this, it’s Sunday afternoon at about 5 o’clock. About an hour ago, the New England Patriots finished dismantling the Miami Dolphins. The final score was 49 – 28, but that was in no way indicative of the game that was played. The Patriots lead at the half was 42 – 7. If they had wanted to be true a-holes, they could have scored 70 points. Hell, against those horrendous Miami defensive backs, Randy Moss himself might have been able to score 60.

This is the best Patriots team I’ve ever seen. Considering the fact that, during this decade, this organization has already won three Super Bowls? That’s some high praise. And not only are they tremendously talented, but they also have decided to take no prisoners. Coach Bill Belichik had removed starting quarterback Tom Brady and inserted backup Matt Cassell. When Miami had the temerity to get back within 21 points with 10 minutes remaining in the game, Belichik put Brady back in and it was pedal to the metal again.

I want to say a great big “Thank You!” to Eric Mangini and the New York Jets. Ever since Mangini complained to the NFL brass, following the first game of the season, concerning some illegal videotaping that the Patriots were doing, there has been absolutely no let-up. The Patriots are on a mission to show the entire league that they don’t need no stinkin’ videotape to crush whoever they’re playing. If this team goes undefeated – and there’s a truly decent chance that they will – it may well be because of that added incentive.

Meanwhile, it is about three hours before the Red Sox play the Cleveland Indians in a deciding game seven in the American League Championship Series. One more win and the Red Sox go back to The World Series for the first time since they won it in 2004.

Four nights ago, much of the city of Boston was in a decided funk concerning the Sox. They trailed Cleveland, three games to one, and half the lineup was in a slump. The starting pitchers couldn’t get past the fifth inning. It looked like it might be an early winter around here.

Now, there is hope, thanks to Josh Beckett, Curt Schilling, and J.D. Drew (J.D. Drew!) among others. It is a couple of hours before the start of the seventh game. The Sox are now favorites to win this series.

And, yet again, meanwhile – the Boston College Eagles are the #2 ranked team in the country. While they had the weekend off, the previously #2 ranked University of South Florida Bulls lost to Rutgers on Friday. In the latest polls released today, BC has jumped to #2 in the nation. They play Virginia Tech this coming Thursday, while #1 Ohio State plays a tough Penn State team come Saturday. There is a very real chance that BC could be the #1 team in the country by next Sunday.

The Celtics, despite my initial misgivings concerning the trading away of Al Jefferson, seem to be a team that can kick serious ass. It’s only the pre-season, but the signs thus far are good. We’ll see what happens when it’s for keeps.

Even the Bruins, the for-the-last-generation-woefully-mediocre Bruins, have come alive. They played a dandy against the New York Rangers on Saturday, beating them 1- 0 in a shootout. They stand at 5 wins and 2 losses.

There has rarely been as good a time to be a sports fan in the Boston area.

Somewhere, sometime, the bubble will burst. It might even be tonight at Fenway. Until then, though, it is like floating on air. We could possibly see five different championships in this city within the next 8 months.

(Hell, SIX if you want to count the local soccer entry, the Revolution, but it’s American soccer, so let’s not get carried away here.)

In other good news, I had breakfast this morning.

MY WIFE and I went to a wonderful place called Donohue's. It is located in our town of Watertown, Massachusetts, so this may not be entirely helpful to you should you live in, say, Australia. However, if you’re in our area some Saturday or Sunday, and looking for an excellent breakfast, you should definitely check it out.

MY WIFE had a mushroom and tomato omelet, English muffin, home fries and coffee. I had the Full Irish Breakfast, which is probably illegal in California. It consisted of scrambled eggs, home fries, sausage, scrumptious meaty Irish bacon, fried tomatoes, hearty whole grain toast, and two types of “pudding” – black and white.

(My brother-in-law, who was our houseguest on Friday evening, had a chance to expound on the subject of pudding when MY WIFE brought home a tinned spotted dick as an experimental treat for us. We had never had spotted dick before, although we had certainly made our share of jokes about it; perhaps many of the same ones you’re thinking up at this very moment. Anyway, we started discussing desserts in general, and he opined how “pudding” is always something sweet in our culture, but may consist of many decidedly non-sweet conglomerations in other societies. And now, here I was eating two different kinds of pudding that fit the latter description. How… something!)

The service at Donohue’s is friendly and the atmosphere relaxed. The place is loaded with about 15 television screens, including two or three very large ones, for viewing of sporting events. We also went here to view the BC game a couple of weeks back. The place was as empty then as we found it this morning. We can’t imagine why this is.

Just down the road, every Sunday, there are long lines of people waiting to get into The Town Diner and Uncommon Grounds, two decent establishments but nowhere near the bargain that Donohue’s is. Our breakfast - and we took home enough for a third meal – cost us about $20 total. It was all delicious and hot; the presentation was lovely; the staff convivial; and the seating comfortable. If some of those folks standing in line elsewhere might want to have a good meal at a good price without having to wait in line, they really should go to Donohue’s.

Donohue’s is located at 83 Bigelow Avenue in Watertown. There is plenty of parking within very-short walking distance. No reservations are required, although there would be if it got the business it deserves.

The final lovely note concerning my lovely Sunday comes from (GASP!) Comcast.

You’ll remember that I was less-than-pleased last week concerning Comcast’s service. Now I’ll tell you about the very good service I received this morning.

Since getting the unwanted digital converter box, I had found a serious problem with our remote control. The volume and mute controls did not work. Now, it wasn’t an insurmountable problem, as we could control the volume via the remote that came with our television set. However, I discovered that not being to control the volume via the cable feed resulted in programs I had taped being far less than optimal. The sound quality was weak and strained.

I attempted to find some way around the remote, but there appeared to be no way to change the volume of the feed other than through the remote itself.

MY WIFE, having read my previous piece and knowing my unwillingness to subject myself to hanging on the line waiting for a cable representative, volunteered to make the call for me. That display of love, by itself, would have been enough to make my Sunday, of course, but then we actually received good service and that completed my circle of joy.

She reached a rep within a minute or so of the call being answered, which is much better than our previous encounters with Comcast. When she was asked a question that she didn’t know the immediate answer to, she handed the telephone to me. The service agent was both friendly and knowledgeable. She asked me to do a couple of things with the remote and then the volume and mute controls became immediately available.

Aside from the most recent good service, I do have to admit that there are features within the digital package that are interesting and useful. It’s still a pain in the ass to have to learn all of the new ways of navigating around the system, but in the end it will probably be a better array of services overall. So there – fair is fair, and now I’ve told you some good stuff about Comcast. Further updates will occur as I become more pleased or more pissed.


Summing up, here is my Sunday:

Sports – Couldn’t be better.

Food – Wonderful.

Television – Better than I thought.

MY WIFE – Still glad I married her.

It has been a lovely Sunday, indeed.


P.S. The Red Sox, as you may have noticed from the title, won. They are headed to The World Series to play the Colorado Rockies. First game is Wednesday, at Fenway. I'll predict the Sox in five games (although I'd rather see them win it in six, as they could then celebrate on their home turf.)


Brian in Oxford said...

I'm waiting for the obligatory Bill Cosby-narrated ad for Jello, cow-flavored!

Michael Leggett said...

In 2 Days, we get to hear the Dulcet-Toned Master of Sarcasm & The Gomer Pyle-Toned "Grand Master Of The Obnoxious Observation", he who's a Master of Baboonery.

Shrink Wrapped Scream said...

congrats on the win Sul, you obviously had a far better sporting weekend than any of us Brits did (I've banned the word "rugby" from our house, it's either that, or I'm off to sulk in the shed again - it's only a bloomin' GAME for heaven sakes!!)

Ooops, let's hope hubby didn't hear me say that..

Ahhhh, Spotted Dick; the scourge of manys a school dinner and the butt of countless school kids jokes - anyway, how was it for you?

Suldog said...

The spotted dick was actually quite good. It was a Heinz tinned version, so I suspect there are probably better to have, but for my first taste of it, I enjoyed it.

Shunkle Ebunkle said...


Anali said...

Can you describe the puddings? Is this like a plum pudding?

And GO SOX!!! I can't believe I missed the game last night. I was in the ER all night with my brother, but he's doing okay.

the blue state blogger said...

The Patriots are absolutely breathtaking right now, and the Colts are 6-0 after dismantling the Jags last night. Unless one of them stumbles next week (unlikely), Week 9 is slated to be the mother of all regular season games!

As for the Sox, well...we kniew it all the time, right? No worries...

It's a heady time to be a NE sports fan!

Suldog said...

Anali - Better to refer you to wikipedia for the details concerning the puddings.

The white pudding article contains a picture of a supposed Full Irish Breakfast, but it is lacking some of the parts I described - notably the potatoes. What kind of Full Irish doesn't contain potatoes? :-)

Sorry to hear about your brother, but glad to hear he's doing OK.