As a fan of a wide variety of popular (and not-so-popular) music from the 1950s (and sometimes even earlier) up through the present, one of my bucket list projects for years has been to put together a list of my 100 favorite songs of all time. At some point I decided that, once I got around to figuring that out, I could put it out on a blog, for the infinitesimally small proportion of the Internet world that might be interested. So, here we are. While the Top 100 will be a major focus, I also plan to post on a variety of other musical (and occasionally non-musical) topics, in which you may or may not be interested. (If a particular posting doesn’t ring your bell, you’re only a few clicks away from a dancing cat video on YouTube.)

Thursday, June 21, 2018

June 18, 2018 – Mahoning Valley Scrappers 4, State College Spikes 1 – Medlar Field at Lubrano Park (State College PA)

Umpires: HP: Edwin Jimenez. 1B: David Cruz.
Weather: 81 degrees, partly cloudy.
Wind: 12 mph, Out to CF.
Time: 2:48.
Attendance: 2,005.
Section 202, Row 18, Seats 1-2 (main level, just beyond third base, aisle seats in the top row just below the concourse)
Game notes – very quiet game through 8 innings, as the Spikes managed only one hit, while the Scrappers scored their only run on a 2nd inning homer by Elvis Perez … Mahoning Valley broke it open with 3 runs in the top of the 9th, the big blow a 2-out, 2-run single by Gian Paul Gonzalez … State College did make things mildly interesting in the bottom of the frame, scoring one run and bringing the tying run to the plate before the Scrappers retired the final 2 batters
Other – actual attendance appeared to be maybe one-quarter of the announced figure … Monday night promotion featured one-dollar hot dogs and one-dollar small sodas (are you listening Nats?) … pleasant evening weather-wise, although it was a hot, humid afternoon

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Beware the ‘mother of all credit bubbles’

Higher and higher levels of debt, this time mostly corporate (instead of home mortgages), packaged into “collateralized loan obligation” securities of decreasing quality. If this doesn’t bring back memories of the Crash of 2007, it should.

Did exactly 4,645 people die in Hurricane Maria? Nope.

That’s more like “4,645 ± 3,852”. Other attempts to ascertain the death toll come out around 1,000 – which is still much higher than the official figure of 64.

Sunday, June 10, 2018

June 8, 2018 – Giants 9, Nats 5 – Nationals Park

Attendance: 41,591
Duration: 3:04
Weather: 84 degrees, Cloudy
Wind: 5 MPH Out to Left
Umpires: HP: Kerwin Danley. 1B: Scott Barry. 2B: Carlos Torres. 3B: Paul Nauert.
Section 316, Row C, Seats 1-3
Game notes – Strasburg didn’t look like himself, yielding 3 runs and giving the visitors a lead they would never relinquish before leaving after the 2nd inning with what turned out to be right shoulder inflammation … Giants padded their lead in the 4th with a 2-run Gorkys Hernandez homer off Wander Suero, who gave up one more run in the 5th … Nats fought back on a 2-run Soto HR in the 4th, 2-run single by Harper in the 5th, and a pinch-single by Matt Adams in the 6th to pull within a run … rather than responding with a shutdown inning, the Nats bullpen (Kintzler/Grace) gave up 3 more runs in the top of the 7th, and the Nats managed only one baserunner over their last 3 ABs 
Other – large crowd for the Zim bobble, resulting in crowded concourses and long concession lines

There are ‘nuggets of truth’ to what Trump says about trade

Yes, there are instances in which countries use high tariffs, quotas and other barriers to protect some domestic industries and make it difficult or impossible to import certain goods.
Of course, the United States is one of those countries.

Saturday, June 2, 2018

Can the Baltimore Ravens win back fans with cheaper stadium food?

Ahem, Washington Nationals. Hot dogs at Citizens Bank Park are $4.00. The Ravens are lowering theirs to $3.00. You just raised your price to $7.00. Get with the program!

#187 It Makes No Difference – The Band (1975)

Robbie Robertson doesn’t get nearly enough credit as a songwriter, and this is one of his best. Rick Danko nails the lead vocal on what one critic has called “one of the most devastatingly beautiful heartbreakers in rock and roll history”.

Friday, June 1, 2018

#186 Should I Cry – The Concords (1964)

Absolutely fantastic up-tempo doo-wop, every bit as good as the Del Vikings’ “Come Go With Me”. The former hit the top 10 in 1957, while this one, like “Morse Code Of Love” and “Rainy Day Bells”, had the misfortune to come out after doo-wop’s popularity had peaked. Life is like that sometimes.

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

May 27, 2018 – Blue Jays 5, Phillies 3 – Citizens Bank Park

Attendance: 24,182
Duration: 2:50
Weather: 68 degrees, Cloudy
Wind: 11 MPH Right to Left
Umpires: HP: Tim Timmons. 1B: Mark Ripperger. 2B: Joe West. 3B: Doug Eddings.
Section 143, Row 10, Seats 7-10 – left field, definitely in home run territory (but no luck)
Game notes – Nick Pivetta got off to a rough start, throwing away a pickoff attempt in the first and giving up two runs in the second on a pair of walks and a double (with two wild pitches mixed in) … settled in and faced the minimum number of batters over his final 3 innings of work … after Pivetta was lifted for a pinch-hitter in the bottom of the 5th, Adam Morgan gave up a two-run double to Dwight Smith Jr. … Phils finally broke through against J.A. Happ and cut the deficit to one run in the bottom of the 6th on 4 straight singles, accompanied by 2 Toronto errors … unfortunately those were the final hits of the game for the home team … Hector Neris allowed a Curtis Granderson homer in the 9th for the final margin
Other – Phillies had moved up to first place in the NL East after winning Saturday,  but dropped back to second as the Braves hammered the Red Sox … the threatened rain didn’t materialize during the game, but it did rain most of the way home, especially on I-95 south of Baltimore, with 3 flash flood alerts coming up on my phone … parked in Lot W rather at the Holiday Inn Philadelphia Stadium, as it turns out that the facility is being razed in preparation for a new hotel/casino/entertainment complex

It’s not just Republicans who are fiscally irresponsible

For example: “Democrats have put ourselves at a longtime, strategic disadvantage,” said Sen. Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii), who has introduced a bill that would make most college free but has waved off questions about the cost. “We have to pay for progressive priorities, and they borrow money for theirs. After the tax cut, there’s almost no enthusiasm for worrying about how to pay for new proposals.”