Thursday, July 26, 2007

Baseball Galore!!!

If you're a fan of baseball, you're gonna LOVE the next few weeks!

First of all, the District 4B amateur baseball tournament starts this Friday in Salem. Basically, this consists of ALL the teams in the Corn Belt League, all 12 teams.

Because of so many teams, the SDABA decreed that seven teams out of our district will advance to the State Tournament in Sioux Falls, August 8-19. So head on over to Salem! They've done a LOT of renovations to their facility, and it's good small-town baseball.

Oh, and if you go, make sure you have your radio on 103.1 FM!


The young bucs are getting their post-season tournaments underway. In Madison, the "Reds" made it to the State 13-14 year old "Teener" tournament which starts this Friday in Flandreau. Howard and Flandreau are also in it as well, so there should be a lot of good baseball going on there. I talked with Rick "The Weapon" Weber last night, who's helping to put this together. I think the poor guy's gonna have his hands full with this tournament, PLUS managing the Flandreau Cardinals in the Districts. But "Weapon" is a gamer and he'll pull it all off and with a big ol' smile on his face!


Speaking of last night, Madison legion played some "Marathon" baseball at the Regions in Garretson. They squeaked out a win over Flandreau in an elimination game, and looked to cruise to an easy win over West Central in the championship. But I think the strain of playing 18 innings in sauna-like conditions proved to be too much for the Maroon and Gold as they lost and saw the season come to an end.

A few questions about last night....

*Why does the consolation team have to play back to back games in the same night? Especially when the heat index has been near triple-digits for the last few games... Anyone remember Korey Stringer?

*How difficult is it to find a circuit breaker to shut off the automatic sprinker system? Seriously... 20 MINUTES?!?!

*Just where in the heck did Brady Wiebe get the knack for hitting the long ball? To heck with Barry "BALCO" Bonds... this kid gets a hold of a fat one, you can measure its travelling distance in Astronomical Units!

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Dining on Asphalt, Part One

With apologies to Alton Brown!

During the high school sports season, I pretty much live off of take out… of course I do that pretty much all the time! But as I continue to go to different towns, I have a tendency of finding out what places are good, which are bad, and which are downright ugly!

So if you find yourself hankering for a good meal… here are my humble suggestions. I didn’t use any scientific formula to come up with my top choices; these are simply my anecdotal experiences. You may have different opinions, feel free to contribute them!

Best Burger: Commercial Club Burgers, Cadwell Park, Mitchell, SD

These little gems are usually available only during the State Amateur baseball tournament, which is in Mitchell two out of every three years (the other year, it’s in Sioux Falls). There’s nothing fancy about these burgers, EXCEPT the buttered/sautéed/fried/grilled onions that you put on them… a grilled burger, a little ketchup, a whole butt-load of onions, and you’re in burger nirvana… Just make sure you take a breath mint before making out with your sweetheart afterwards!

Honorable mention: Nick’s in Brookings, Jersey’s in Madison

Best Pizza: George’s Pizza, Brookings, SD

Picture this… it’s been a long night of hanging out with your friends in the bars. It’s 2:00 am, you’re tired, but you want something to settle your stomach. You COULD go to one of the Big Box “family” restaurants on the edge of town, but only at the risk of being pulled over by the police. So what do you do?

You head up to the walk-up window at George’s Pizza and get a slice of the all-meat pizza. Actually, make it two… one to eat there and one to eat when you finish walking home. And man is it worth it! FRESH ingredients, HOMEMADE dough and enough toppings during regular business hours to make your eyes bug out! One suggestion, though, get the deep dish!

Honorable Mention: open to suggestions here!

Best Steak: The Old Dutch Inn, Dell Rapids, SD

Living in South Dakota, the steakhouse is as much an institution as the grain elevator. And believe me, there are a LOT of choices here in this area. And they’re all very good. BUT, I have to go with the place where you can get a VERY good steak dinner for just six bucks. And that’s the Old Dutch, back in my old stomping grounds of Dell Rapids.

So how do you get a good sirloin steak dinner for six-bucks? Very simple. Tom (the owner) hand-cuts his steaks, which keeps prices WAY low! There’s more to it, but I’m sworn to secrecy!

Honorable Mention: The Depot, Mitchell, SD; The Moonlite, Madison, SD

MORE TO COME... Keep watching!

Friday, July 20, 2007

Is 60 the new 40?

A few months ago, mein pops turned the big 60.... which means he's just a few scant years away from being at the traditional retirement age.

Thinking of that I've been hearing a new phrase... "Sixty is the new 40". In other words, the thinking of 40 being the traditional start of middle age has now been pushed up another 20 years.

Truth? or Marketing ploy?

I'll grant you the "Baby Boomers" that are joining the afternoon shuffleboard leagues have benefitted more health-wise than the "Greatest Generation". Advances in medicine, plus a focus on staying healthy more than likely means that this group of folks will be around for quite a while.

But as far as statistics go, the average life span in the United States is 72 for men and 79 for women (I wonder why that is? Are men in that much of a hurry to get to the grave before women? LOL). So unless we see a massive uptick in centigenarians within the next 20 years or so, I think sixty is going to remain sixty.

What do you think?

Saturday, July 14, 2007

To "jock" or not to "jock"?

Hello... I'm jackrabit1... I'm 32 (at the end of the month)... single... and I'm a disc jockey.

Or am I?

Officially, I am considered an "on-air announcer," at least that's what I put down on my 1040 this year. But there are other terms... "on-air personality", "disc jockey", "boss jock", and probably a few I haven't heard.

"Disc jockey" is a bit outdated... unless you're work at a college station or a station that still believes in turntables and reel-to-reels! Most radio stations now have their libraries on computer, usually arranged with some type of scheduling software and played over the computer with a program like Simian or Smartcaster. Some stations even go off satellite 24-7, using programming from such providers like Westwood One, Jones Radio Network, or ABC, just to name a few. Happily, we use live announcers, with some satellite programming at night or sports.

"Personality" is a bit of a misnomer... at least in my case! When I hear "personality" I think of Howard Stern, Opie and Anthony, or any of those adult-oriented folks that seem to make their livings off sex and fart jokes. Sex and fart-jokes are fine in their place, hell, I'll tell them; off-air! Another thing about "personalities"... they tend to wear out their welcome pretty darn fast. As the butler said in the 1995 movie "King Ralph", "Today's breath of fresh air can quickly become tomorrow's foul wind". See Cory, I used quotes and everything!

"Announcer" is a bit dry... but it's accurate.

I guess, though, that I've been calling other announcers "jocks". And I used to think "jocks" was a bit of a demeaning, like I was some sort of trained monkey just playing songs. But as I've started to become a student of the history of broadcasting, listening to old clips and reading about such disc jockeys as "Wolfman Jack", "Cousin Brucie", Rick Dees, Shadoe Stevens, Charlie Tuna, Ralph Emery, and "Murray the K", I realize "jock" is not a bad term... it has a history of fantastic announcers, a heritage of some of the most influential voices and their music. I guess you can say, I'm taking back the term... as a term of affection, of course!

But I'll still use "on-air announcer" on my 1040 next year!

Thursday, July 12, 2007

It happened...

Elijah Page Executed

South Dakota's first execution in 60 years... wow.

For those of you thinking there was some celebration of this act, there wasn't. He paid his debt. Simple as that.

No gloating... just closure.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Some more....

So here's some more stuff that's been floating around the ol' brain-box.

1) Fred Phelps... Okay, who is this guy? Some demented little crackpot who's rooting for our enemies because, get this, we are tolerant of homosexuals! Dude, up your dosage!

I consider myself an almost religious person. I try to follow the principles of my faith, although I don't get to church as much as my dear, departed grandma would like. But I guess the God I believe in is a God of love and who does not hate. So when I see signs like "God Hates F@gs", I really get upset. And these inbreeders even go and protest at soldiers' funerals!!!

Let me get this straight... because of your beliefs, you're going to go and preach your hateful message to families who are hurting and in pain because they lost a loved one... That is sick and sad. What a bunch of morons!

2) New Projects in South Dakota... It's funny. 15 years ago, a popular publication called us the "outback" of the United States... elitist pricks! But it seems we're in position to become a major economic player outside of just agriculture.

It looks like we're about to become a major leader in childrens' medical research, thanks to the Sanford initiative, we have the natural resources to become the "OPEC" of wind energy, a new oil refinery that'll bring oil down from our good ol' friends to the north in Canada, and now the announcement today that Western South Dakota is going to get its props with the old Homestake Mine being named the new site of the National Underground Lab and South Dakota could be a real economic player.

3) This weekend... two things about this weekend... Lemonade and CCR! I actually bought a CCR greatest hits CD this weekend (only 12-bucks at Pamida!). Since it was going to be too hot out of doors last week, I needed a little musical diversion...

The 60's had a lot of breakthrough groups and performers... the Beatles, The Who, Janis, Jimi, Clapton, Jefferson Starship, and more. And I think Creedence Clearwater Revivial gets lost in that mix. There's nothing fancy about their music... it reminds me of a group of friends jammin out on a front porch and there's a group of folks sitting around in lawn chairs or on the ground and sipping their favorite adult beverage.

But they influenced quite a few "roots rockers", Eagles, Springsteen, Mellancamp, and even Tom Petty. And they didn't use reverb, or distortion or re-mixing... just straight ahead, clean rock and roll. And I love anything that is NOT pre-produced!

Oh, and my drink of choice this week... Country Time Strawberry Lemonade! Yum! Unfortunately Jubilee was out of it when I stopped on on Sunday, so if anyone sees it on the shelves, could you drop me a line? Thanks!

Friday, July 06, 2007

Head On... apply directly to the forehead!!!

Okay, so I'm in one of those surreal moods! And time for some more "Random Thoughts."

1) Leg Cramps... Got one about 3:30 a.m.... It takes a lot to get me to sail like a sailor. Like a leg cramp. I'm surprised I didn't wake up the whole of Madison! Or my blogging friend out on Lake Herman!

You know, there are about as many theories about what causes leg cramps as there are JFK assassination theories. All I know is I was walking like a goober today because of it. Leg Cramps Suck!

2) Death Penalty... Believe it or not, I'm not quite sure about this anymore. On one hand, there's the whole deterrent thing, which holds about as much water as a colander. On the other hand, there's the "being much better than the criminal" argument. Which is a bit silly, because we are not committing crimes or going around killing people for no good reason!

Frankly, I'd like to be a heartless bastard. Ship em all to Alaska, no cable TV, no porn, just 3 basic meals and 12-hours of hard labor a day. That's all they deserve. And if they escape... well, good luck with the bears!

3) Bush pardon of Libby... Dubya, you gotta take a lesson from your predecessor... If you give a pardon, make sure that person gives a nice fat contribution to your Presidential library (or your wife's Senate campaign!)

4) Zoey... Every since my niece was born, I've had her picture on my cell phone. Whenever I get stressed or feel like crap, I just flip open my phone and there she is in all her newborn cuteness. Best medicine in the world!

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Random Thoughts...

Some things that have been floating round the ol' Jackrabit's noggin.

1) Paris Hilton...proof that all you need to make it in this world is a sex tape, skanky clothes, skanky attitude, and a DUI! Oh, and a public more concerned with "Bread and Circuses" than with other issues. Still readin' that Bible, girlie? Or are you using it as a drink coaster!

2) Isaiah Washington...a sad example that you can do everything expected of you... make apologies left and right and figuratively castrate yourself at the altar of political correctness and it doesn't amount to a tinker's damn in their eyes. Funny... I thought the "Politically Correct" bunch was all about tolerance and acceptance; I guess that doesn't include apologies. Keep fighting the good fight, amigo! Take these hypocrites to task!

3) Video Game Addiction... I heard a report where a young man was spending an unreal time playing video games. The parents took away the game and he went ballistic, starting to trash the house. They relented and gave him back his games.

What a pair of wimps! If it was my kid pulling that crap, I would have back-handed him! In a non-closed hand fashion, of course (don't want some to think I'm advocating child abuse!) Addiction to video games? What a crock! Some made-up term some out-of-work therapist cooked up to drum up more business. To me, it's a matter of setting boundaries and the parents failing MISERABLY.

4) Congress... we rail about how Bush has such lousy numbers... turns out Congress has an approval rating of 14-PERCENT!!! Those who live in glass houses, I guess.

That's all for now... stay tuned!