Opinions in the Shorts: Vol. 87

On David Broder
On Wednesday, we lost Washington Post columnist David Broder to complications with diabetes. I will miss him because of his sensible approach to the problems and issues that he addressed in his columns. Given the crazy atmosphere of the current state of US politics, I (and many others) will miss him. Thank you David Broder for practical view!
Here are two columns about Mr. Broder: one and two.

On a Few GOP Shorts
Is it too much time on their hands, or stupidity? Why else would Rush Limbaugh and Sarah Palin intensify attacks on First Lady Michelle Obama?

Columnist George Will recently had this interesting column about the GOP presidential nominees.

On the Public Union Debates
The news about public employee unions in Wisconsin, Ohio, and Indiana has been front page for a few weeks. Regardless what the governors and legislators say about budgets and even school reform, these actions center on union busting. Meanwhile, the number of misinformed inaccuracies I read from the public is staggering. One thing for sure, although commonalities exist, each state is different.

On those Flood Waters
At the moment, the Ohio River is at flood stage. Of course, that has a different meaning to those living in river communities. I grew up in one, so dealing with floodwaters was a spring event that interrupted life in our small town. Hmmm … an idea for a future post.

On Women’s History Month
Until I read this post from fellow blogger (and good guy) Al, I didn’t realized that March is Women’s History Month. I encourage everyone to read this.

On Sports Shorts
Something just isn’t right that Ohio State football players received a stiffer suspension that the coach. Isn’t the coach supposed to know better? Although the NCAA may change that, time will tell if the NCAA also sanctions the university. I think they should, but don’t think they will.

Sports polls are such joke. Unlike football and its debacle known as the BCS, basketball fans roll with the polls because in the end, the one left standing in the March Madness brackets is the undisputed champion.

Baseball season is approaching, thus for me, the return of fantasy baseball. I play for fun. The version I play is free, owners don’t deal with one another, and there is no time-consuming draft. Let me know if you would like to play.

On a Different Event for the Weekend
This weekend we (along with the rest of our handbell choir) will attend a handbell convention for a five-state region. This will be our first time at an event as this, so we don’t know what to expect – plus who knows how many ringers will be there. Nonetheless, we are looking forward to the event.

Here’s a wonderful video of two combined choirs in Korea. They are talented and the piece is fun. You should notice bells, chimes, mallets, and a variety of techniques – so I encourage you to watch and enjoy. Have a good weekend everyone!

On Fantasy Sports

While killing time in a mall bookstore on a weekend visit to Ft. Wayne, Indiana one winter day in the mid-to-late 1980s, I stumbled across and bought the 2nd edition of Rotisserie League Baseball by Glen Waggoner. Within a month, our league formed.

Although “fantasy sports” is the commonly used term instead of rotisserie, let me simply say I was playing this game without Internet resources and without software. It was magazines and newspapers, thus we calculated stats from newspapers with pencils, paper, and calculators.

I’ve played in keeper leagues, NL-only leagues, open-leagues, draft and trade, leagues involving minor leagues, leagues involving money and no money, those with a playoff system, salary auctions and simple draft pick ‘em, cumulative-stat leagues vs. period-stat leagues, short-seasons and full-season leagues, and so on. Since then, I’ve also played online versions of baseball, NFL. college football, NASCAR, and minimal tries at golf, hockey, and basketball.

Every fantasy sports participant (owner) has their preference and since my history goes back further than most, here’s what I’ve learned about my preferences.

  • I prefer playing for fun instead of money because money changes behaviors.
  • I prefer playing without drafts because drafts take too much time.
  • I prefer playing games without dealing with other owners because they can be a pain.
  • I prefer playing games without trading with other owners because of owner behaviors.

These are why I prefer playing games at The Sporting News (TSN). Many TSN games are free, all players are available to all owners, and owners don’t deal with one another. In other words, I play for fun because I enjoy it. Those early days clearly taught me want I don’t like.

Baseball season is approaching, so my scouting has begun. If there’s anyone out there who want to try it for fun – thus no pressure, let me know.