EppsNet Archive: Death

My Boyhood Sports Icons Are Dying: Al Kaline

 

Al Kaline played all 22 years of his career as a right fielder for the Detroit Tigers, played in 18 All-Star games, won 10 Gold Gloves, a World Series in 1968, had 3,007 hits, 399 home runs, a .297 batting average and was a first-ballot Hall of Famer. He died today at the age of 85. On his 80th birthday, he said: “To this day, I can’t believe the life I’ve had. I wanted to be a baseball player — and do the one thing I was good at. “Even now, I love it so much.” RIP Al Kaline Read more →

Joe Biden on Coronavirus, Ebola and (Not) Swine Flu

 

My fellow Americans – Another presidential election year is upon us! I saw one of the Democratic candidates, Sleepy Joe Biden, on the television talking about the current coronavirus outbreak with Jake Tapper, who asked him, “What, if anything, do you think you would be doing differently if you were president right now?” “I know what I would have done differently,” Biden exclaimed. “What we did in the Ebola crisis!” (The 2014-2016 Ebola outbreak was in Western Africa. The heroes of that story were the medical workers who actually went to Africa at the risk of their own lives to combat it.) Because Tapper, like the rest of the CNN punchinellos, is a Democratic water carrier, he refrained from expressing any astonishment regarding the irrelevance of the Ebola crisis, and also refrained from asking what would have been an obvious and good follow-up question: “According to the CDC, in the… Read more →

Some People Need More Help to Calm Down

 

Ric Flair‘s son, Reid Flair, died of an overdose of heroin, Klonopin and Xanax. It seems like one alone would be sufficient but he evidently needed more help than most people to calm down! (The death occurred in 2013 but I just read about it this week.) Read more →

Our Town

 

On this date — Feb. 4, 1938 — the Thornton Wilder play Our Town opened on Broadway . . . Emily: Oh, Mama, look at me one minute as though you really saw me. Mama, fourteen years have gone by. I’m dead. You’re a grandmother, Mama! Wally’s dead, too. His appendix burst on a camping trip to North Conway. We felt just terrible about it — don’t you remember? But, just for a moment now we’re all together. Mama, just for a moment we’re happy. Let’s really look at one another! … I can’t. I can’t go on. It goes so fast. We don’t have time to look at one another. I didn’t realize. So all that was going on and we never noticed. Take me back — up the hill — to my grave. But first: Wait! One more look. Good-bye, Good-bye world. Good-bye, Grover’s Corners….Mama and Papa. Good-bye… Read more →

Kobe Bryant, 1978-2013

 

One never knows when the blow may fall, Mamba Mentality notwithstanding. He wakes up this morning and a few hours later he dies at the age of 41. It sounds like they may have been flying through fog and hit a hillside rather than hitting the ground. Is there enough time to grab your daughter’s hand and say “I love you” or is it all over too fast? Which would be better or worse? RIP Kobe Bryant, Gianna and all the other passengers Read more →

Steve Martin Caro, 1948-2020

 

He was the lead singer on one of my favorite 1960s songs . . . RIP Steve Martin Caro Read more →

Not Waving But Drowning

 

Nobody heard him, the dead man, But still he lay moaning: I was much further out than you thought And not waving but drowning. Poor chap, he always loved larking And now he’s dead It must have been too cold for him his heart gave way, They said. Oh, no no no, it was too cold always (Still the dead one lay moaning) I was much too far out all my life And not waving but drowning. — Stevie Smith, “Not Waving But Drowning” Read more →

How Many White Supremacists Are There in the US?

 

I see and hear “white supremacists” and “white nationalists” being tossed around every day but I never see any reporting on how many Americans actually identify as white supremacists or white nationalists. Why is that? Wouldn’t it be important to know that in order to have an informed opinion on the topic? I’ve always assumed it’s because the actual number is too small to be taken seriously so it’s just omitted. “White nationalism” is the political term of choice because it sounds a lot scarier than “an extremely small, poorly organized group of confused losers.” Do you actually try to read anything outside of material pandering to your narrow mindset? I’ll make it easy for you. Here you go: https://sites.duke.edu/tcths/files/2013/06/Kurzman_Schanzer_Law_Enforcement_Assessment_of_the_Violent_Extremist_Threat_final.pdf Could you just give me the number? I could, but I’d rather you do the work of reading it yourself. It’s only 12 pages long, with lots of graphs, so… Read more →

What is the Goal of Background Checks?

 

  What is the goal of background checks? To prevent murders? The Odessa shooter, to cite one example, couldn’t pass a background check, but he got his hands on a gun anyway. If you’re trying to get a gun for the purpose of murdering one or more persons, why would you care about passing a background check? Has anyone ever said “I was planning to go on a murderous rampage but I didn’t want to do it with an illegally obtained firearm. Because I might get in trouble with the law.” So for Odessa, charges would include seven deaths, 19 wounded, plus illegal possession of a firearm?! Is that a deterrent?   Read more →

Vaping-Related Deaths Are BS. You Heard it Here First.

 

Trump administration readies ban on flavored e-cigarettes amid outbreak of vaping-related deaths CNBC Condolences to the victims but do six deaths in a country of 320 million people really represent an “outbreak”? Also, “vaping-related deaths” is bullshit as the article itself says in the first paragraph: The Trump administration is preparing to ban flavored e-cigarettes as federal health officials call for restrictions to combat an outbreak of a mysterious lung disease . . . “Mysterious lung disease.” In the headline, vaping is flat-out killing people; in the article it’s a mystery disease. I’ve read specifically about three of the deaths. One was here in Southern California, in Los Angeles County. The deceased was described as an older adult male, at least 55 years old, with chronic health conditions. A woman who died in Kansas was older than 50 and had a history of health problems.  In Minnesota, the state’s “first… Read more →

Life Goes On

 

Trump went golfing as Hurricane Dorian threatens US CNN So what? I was jerking off while my dad died of a heart attack. No, I made that up. The point is, life goes on. Did you stop fucking your secretary just because your sister was in the hospital? Of course not. There was nothing you could do for her, just like there’s nothing Trump can do about the hurricane. Give me a fucking break . . . Read more →

Praying for Protection

 

Texas state lawmaker calls for ‘praying for protection’ instead of gun reform in wake of mass shooting CNN Let me ask you: what is “gun reform”? Why would it be better than prayer for preventing mass shootings? Pray for protection and if you get shot, take comfort in knowing it was God’s will. Can I get an amen? Read more →

Jim Leavelle, 1920-2019

 

You don’t know his name, but you know who he is. He’s one of three people in the foreground of one of the most famous photos in American history. Leavelle is the man in the light-colored suit escorting Lee Harvey Oswald through the basement of Dallas Police Headquarters when Oswald was shot by Jack Ruby. Notice the difference in the position of Oswald relative to Leavelle in the photo below, before the gunshot. Leavelle, who was handcuffed to Oswald, said when he saw Ruby with the gun, he tried to jerk Oswald behind him, but Ruby was so close by that time that all he was able to do was turn Oswald sideways. Leavelle died this week at the age of 99. RIP Jim Leavelle Read more →

Fact Check: Trump Said One Thing While His Critics Said Another!

 

From an Associated Press “fact check”: Trump distorted science in seeking to assign blame on video games for the deadly shootings in Texas and Ohio, rather than on his own words that critics say contributed to a combustible racial climate spawning violence. Trump said one thing while his critics said another? That’s a fact check?! First of all, “I blame video games” is a ridiculous simplification of what he actually said but okay, let’s talk about video games . . . I’m not aware of a “scientific link” between video games and mass shootings. Nor am I aware of a “scientific link” between Trump talking about immigration and mass shootings, but notice that doesn’t stop the AP from throwing it out there. (“Critics say” does not establish a scientific link.) How is the video game research done? Do researchers look at the percentage of video game players who commit mass… Read more →

Mass Shootings, Thwarted and Unthwarted

 

Arresting some knucklehead on a weapons charge and saying you “thwarted a mass shooting” is a speculative fantasy. Meanwhile, since El Paso there have been 25 actual unthwarted mass shootings (per Mass Shooting Tracker), which don’t make the news because they don’t fit the preferred narrative. For example, four of the shootings occurred in Chicago, where in each case the shooters fired into a crowd of people. By my count, about half the victims were women. I can’t find any reporting on this in Mother Jones, which is pretty shocking given their obvious interest in mass shootings. They’d rather report on imaginary mass shootings by white males than on the actual mass shootings of Chicago residents . Read more →

What is a “Mass Shooting” and Who Commits Them?

 

The Mass Shooting Tracker defines a mass shooting as “an incident where four or more people are shot in a single shooting spree.” The FBI definition of “mass murder” is three or more people murdered in one event. The FBI doesn’t have a definition for “mass shooting.” You have to actually die for the FBI to take notice of you. As of this writing, of 75 mass shootings in 2019, where the race of the perpetrator is known, 22 were white, 39 were black, 8 were Latino, 3 were Asian, 2 were American Indian and 1 was Arab. Many of the 2019 mass shootings are currently unsolved, thus the race of the shooters is not known, but they often took place in black areas and claimed black victims. Mass shootings of black citizens is not generally considered newsworthy, possibly because media have written inner cities off as unsalvageable, so what happens… Read more →

8Chan

 

According to the New York Times, at least three mass shootings this year — the one in El Paso last Saturday, the mosque attacks in Christchurch, New Zealand, and the synagogue shooting in Poway, Calif. — have been announced in advance on 8chan. The 8chan site has struggled to stay online as hosting providers no longer want to provide services. If mass shootings are being announced in advance, wouldn’t it make sense to maintain the site online and pay attention to it? Read more →

Polarizing Ideas

 

Analyzing the actions and/or writings of mass murderers in hopes of being able to blame one’s political opponents is not an admirable impulse. The El Paso shooter wrote that his views predate President Trump, but I notice that didn’t stop motivated people from blaming Trump and his “polarizing ideas.” If we have to play this game, I think I could make an equally good case for “polarizing ideas” on the left. e.g., “When I’m president, I will decriminalize border crossings. People will be coming in from everywhere and when they get here, you’re going to be paying for their healthcare and education, all the way through college. Oh you’re trying to save up a down payment for a house? That’s too bad. Maybe they’ll take your job too. By the way, if you don’t think this is a good idea, you are a deplorable person. You’re a racist. You’re a white… Read more →

Bathtime With Sylvia Plath

 

There must be quite a few things a hot bath won’t cure, but I don’t know many of them. Sylvia Plath And those few things can be cured by sticking your head in an oven . . . Read more →

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