Wednesday, December 21, 2005

ABC News Poll

ABC news poll says 52% of New Yorkers support the Transit Union strike. Would you get this impression from watching the local news?

Damon Now a Yankee

Damon has gone to the Yankees for 52 million. Can fans strike against a moronic front office?

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Exclimation Points Threaten Strike

I was all pro the strike and labor generally, but labor difficulties are now hitting close to home. The exclamation points have threaten to walk out of negotiations citing over use during MTA strike coverage. They've tried to make the point that they're only holding out for benefits they currently have and not trying to extend privileges such as healthcare. Moreover, they whine about future exclamation points, as those currently in service will get their benefits grand fathered in. However, we know their kind to be ungrateful for the largess extended to them here at bluefishcanoe (they also have a reputation for being a bit on the lazy side). The semicolons accepted a benefits evisceration, so why can't the exclamation points? From now on their arguments will be buried on the later portions of this page.

!!Transit Strike Update!!

How are Union workers getting to the picket lines? !!!!!

12:00 Strike Central

It's 12:00, Monday. Roger Toussaint is about to come on NY 1. It's still unclear if we're having a strike or not. NY1 is reporting a strike, but both the MTA bosses and the Union have yet to confirm this report. Unclear where NY1 is getting this information, but nonetheless NY1 is reporting it. Among other bizzare points the MTA bosses won't give in on is that the MTA refuses to recognize Martin Luther King Day. Yet NY1 has interviewed a steady stream of New Yorkers against the strike.

Monday, December 19, 2005

Viva Toussaint!

Mr. Toussaint, leader of the transit union, seems to be ready to take the entire workforce of the New York ,MTA on strike at midnight tonight. Drink up fellas because if get out of that bar after 12 you're walking!

Mayor Bloomberg, speaking on behalf of the city, continues to call the transit workers selfish for not giving into city demands that future employees pay co-pays with their health insurance. However, changes to the health system will only affect future workers, so claims that the current workforce is acting out of self-interest are totally lame.

Mr. Toussaint can be arrested for organizing the strike because the MTA strike violates the Talyor Act. His jail will undoubtedly minimal and will inspire strikers and catapult Toussaint into strike infamy.

Here at bluefishcanoe we’re hunkered down with bottled water and canned food—enough for 20 years of transit strike. (The delivery guys will still be working right? Because the food is stored at the Chinese takeout.) Anyway I’m ready. Strike away!

Saturday, December 17, 2005

!!Transit Strike ’05!!

I’m reporting live from the epi-center of the great transit strike of 2005 in New York City! The Metropolitan Transit Authority (MTA), which manages New York City transit, insists that new union workers accept less health benefits and get their pensions later than current employees. The MTA cites “hard times” as a justification for the cuts, despite the fact that the members of Local 100 of the Transport Workers Union do possibly the most important job in the city, while they breath in high quantities of asbestos and mystery substances typically and vaguely termed “particulate matter”. Union workers are quick to point out that the MTA has a one million dollar surplus, and that times are far from hard. However, for reasons that remain unclear, the MTA bosses are allowed to operate with more autonomy than most third world nations. Evidence of the MTA's indepence from oversight and reason could be seen in Mayor Bloomberg’s sheepish suggestion that the Union give in soon, presumably because the MTA is allowed authority over not just the Union contract, but also the English language definition of “hard times” (with no apologies to those at Oxford’s English Dictionary).

I won’t go through the intricacies of the dispute, but I will say one sticking point is that the MTA wants workers to stay on the job until they are 62 before getting pensions, not 55, the current age where pensions are awarded. The public seems to support the MTA on this issue, and thus consenting to old people driving subways. Vision, hearing, and reaction time all plummet with old age, so why we would want old people driving subway cars remains unclear.

So far, a few formerly private buss lines in Queens have been the first to strike, thus affecting only a tiny percentage of New Yorkers.

Media coverage of Transit Strike ’05 has been more biased in favor of the MTA bosses than any other bias this blogger has ever observed, especially in tabloid papers such as the New York Post and New York One, which is essentially a TV version of Post stories plus useful temperature updates. This media bias reflects New Yorker’s total lack of sympathy or understanding for transit workers. Some have suggested this apathy towards transit workers stems from transit workers general rudeness, some suggests it’s because the transit workers are largely African American; however indifference to the health care concerns of transit workers may just come from the inconveniences that will result from a transit strike. Either way New Yorkers have once again proven to be far from their liberal stereotype when it comes to problems in their own city.

The Editorial Board here at Blue Fish Canoe whole heatedly supports the transit strike, and would like to be the first to dub cab drivers that pick up more passengers after an initial passenger, the heroes of transit strike ’05. A representative from the cab workers Union heroically replies to this attribution by saying all New Yorkers are the real heroes.

Furthermore, “I Survived Transit Strike ‘05” tee shirts, hats and baby-tees are now on sale here. In your face casualties!

Thursday, December 15, 2005

A very girlie blog

If you are a dude, when you were a kid did you ever go into a friend’s older sister’s room? I grew up with one brother and few female friends, so accidental forays into female-dom occurred rarely; however I do remember one. A friend of mine and I were playing our usual game of lead paint eating or hammer fighting, and I recall hiding from further toxic exposure or bludgeoning behind a door at the end of the friend’s hall. The door was his sister’s and was kept closed. The sister was gone, and the room was foreign and implicitly forbidden. It smelled sweet and things that should have been drab colors like staplers and slippers were bright pink. I recall a pencil with a pink afro instead of an eraser. Blinded by sharp colors which had never before grazed my retina, and buzzed from lead related cerebral hemorrhaging (and/or hammer related hemorrhages), I fled the scene.

But now many years later (ok two years later), I had a blog induced flash back of the whole ordeal when I stumbled on Check it out and you too may relive gender role defining moments in your life. And then e-mail about how did this girl got the tracers of hearts to follow the mouse pointer?

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

This website allows you to sign a petition about keeping Manny in Boston. Clearly, I have nothing better to do.

I got this from the Bill Simmons site.

Monday, December 12, 2005

New-Old Sox

Even more bizarre than the rumor that Nomar may come back to the Sox is talk of Clemens coming back. Of course the Red Sox are one of the few teams that could pay their mammoth salaries--thus our not-so-subtle trick for keeping Manny in town may work on the former Sox...

But naturally my bias is against losing anyone from the second half of the 04 season, and taking on Clemens or Nomar would only push the fall 04 crew further away. Also I consider myself totally immune to Manny's disinclination towards Boston. Maybe I don't take it personally when Manny expresses dissatisfaction with Beantown because I'm from Worcester. Or maybe it's because he's a World Series MVP and our best hitter since Yaz. In either case Manny may take a big, old dump in front of Quincy Market, and I would simple walk around the excrement on my way to the Cheers replica bar or whatever horribleness they have on Faneuil Hall.

Sunday, December 11, 2005


Does anyone know how Google works? I’ve long felt that the secret and mysterious algorithm, which governs access cyber-knowledge is beyond my comprehension, but also I trusted its judgment. I hear it has something to do with the number of links to your site, not number of hits—hence the blogger etiquette of linking to sites that have linked to yours in hopes of cross-pollination. But that doesn’t explain which search topics will bring web surfers to your site. A quick examination of referrals to bluefishcanoe and a google experiment reveals that searching under blue fish canoe brings one nowhere near the site. Searching under Oil Can Boyd gets one no closer. However searching under Transvestite Academy puts you right on the door step of bluefishcanoe.

I guess I should put out a disclaimer: for all those looking for a/the Transvestite Academy, I have little to no information on such an institution. I support your lifestyle choice and quest for higher learning, but sadly I remain largely ignorant of reliable information on the subject. I do mention a ‘Transvestite Academy Awards Show’ in the 11/7 entry (who among us has not?), but I write sparsely on the subject after that. However, the news is not all bad. Fortunately the Internet abounds with resources on your pursuit. Just go back to google search and check out another link.

Saturday, December 10, 2005

The Great One

I would have linked up to this site earlier, but to be honesty I felt unworthy. Now that it’s clear I’m going to try and write about Boston sports among other things, I feel I must do this out of respect. Today I unveil my link to the man who got his start as a blogger (not counting the Herald) and went on to redefine sports media. A man who once wrote about considering stealing an ornamented cup from a church to use a trophy in this video game football league. The popularizer, though not inventor, of the ‘Ewing Theory.’ The Alexander the Great of Internet sports writing. Holy Cross (in Worcester) class of 1992 graduate -- Bill Simmons.... Well not him of course, just a link to his website.

Friday, December 09, 2005

A Third Third Baseman--updated

I've been out of the internet and blogging scene for about a week now due to finals, and other commitments, but I recently checked in on Worcester, MA's Tellegram and Gazette , and in five minutes, I've caught up with the Red Sox. The good, old T&G spared me of the endless editorializing of the Boston Globe, as well Dan Shaughnessy's trademark ramble at the opening of his columns, and his general disdain for Boston sports. Note: the T&G online is only free for those with subscriptions, but we have people working to get it distributed freely on the net (thanks HW).

The Red Sox just traded their shortstop, Egar Renteria, for the Braves third baseman and young prospect, Andy Marte. We can add Marte to the list of thirdbaseman which includes Kevin Youkilis, Bill Mueller, and Mike Lowell. To deal with this glut of 3B-man, we may rename 1B and 2B, 3Ba, and 3Bb. However, the second base situation is not unlike that at third. We had plenty of second baseman (Alex Cora, prospect Dustin Pedroia, Tony Graffanino) yet we traded our best backup catcher and Wakefield specialist, Doug Mirabelli, to the Padres for another 2B-man in Mark Loretta.

Thus the net transaction of recent months is basically a gain of Josh Becket and Marte, and a loss of Renteria, Mirabelli and Hanley Ramirez--all and all not too terrible. Although it’s possible H. Ramirez will eventually wear a foreign uniform of a consistent contender like the dreaded pin strip, as the Marlins won't hold onto him if he proves himself. The free agent situation is totally up in the air, but judging by our habit of acquiring third basemen, Bill Mueller may be moving. Also we have to find someone else who can catch a knuckle ball.

There's been some worrying talk of bringing back Nomar. I'm not sure if he's the kind of veteran that can pull together a young team of strangers. I might regard his reacquisition as not unlike a drunken hookup with an ex girlfriend. Familiar, certainly fun, but not altogether right in its own way. (No need to question how this analogy reflects on me.) We also lost guys like Harvey Garcia and gained guys like Guillermo Motto. I won't even pretend to have a clue what that means. Do some of these trades feel more like managment is trying to prove they can make moves without Theo, rather than a real plan for the future of the organization?

Nothing is new with Oil Can Boyd on either the film, book, or trial scene; though I continue to scour the internet for updates.

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Oil Can Update

In a recent ESPN interview Oil Can Boyd unvieled plans for his new book and movie. An except from the interview is reproduced below:

I'm writing a book,'' said the Can. "But it's going to be hard because every day, a new book starts. We're even talking about movie rights: The 'Oil Can' Boyd Story. The newspapers here said Denzel [Washington] or Jamie Foxx might be best to play me, but I'll probably have to play me because as we know, there's only one 'Oil Can' Boyd.''

The interview again raises the question, is the Oil Can a master of his art, or a slave to his creations. His deft command of both the literary and film forms is self-evident (or at least will be), but has the Can's mystique surpassed all that can be captured by today's popular black actors leaving the only person capable of portraying Oil Can to be Oil Can himself? How will Oil Can manage the demands of writing a novel, adapting that novel to film, and staring in the film on top of a semi-pro baseball career (as well as impending criminal prosecution: see last Can update)? Shakespeare was busy, but did he have to pitch once every 5 to 7 days of the summer for the Brockton, Rox? One thing we do know is that if any man can pull this off, the Can can.

Viva la Bridge Runner

Coming over the Manhattan bridge yesterday evening, in the distance, I saw what appeared to be a topless person running at me. As the figure approach, I realized it was a woman, with a shaved head, and her clothing draped over her arm. When she got close I saw she was smiling. As she passed me my head turned (these things work on a molecular level—and out of my control (1)). I asked if she was alright because remaining silent seemed rude somehow. She yelled over her shoulder that she was great, and it was a photo shoot. Some little hip dude with a camera was crouched in front of me. Had she not mentioned it, I would have walked clear into him.

Needless to say the bridge runner made my afternoon. Rock on bridge runner! I raise a glass and light a J to your photo shoot.

1. Jerry Seinfeld.

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Personal Statement

I'm working on my personal statement for epidemiology graduate school right now. The important thing to remember is that hundreds of people apply for a handful of spots. As a friend was just reminding me, it's no longer good enough to have perfect GRE scores, a 4.0 from an Ivy League university, and have started your own clinic in a rural African village. Your clinic needs to make surgery free and fun for kids. As I meet none of these minimal requirements I've gotten creative. To distinguish myself from the rabble, I've focused my research not on traditional subjects such as white men and impoverished children, but rather my work endeavors to bring the dead back to life. Not just the recently deceased either; I resurrect the really smelly, rotten dead people. Just give me greater than 50% of a body by noon and I'll have a gainfully employed Kinko’s staffer, payroll officer, or female conservative commentator by dinner time.

Monday, November 28, 2005

Can in the Can

Former Red Sox great, Dennis "Oil Can" Boyd, was arrested a week ago in Tupelo, Mississippi by FBI agents for threatening a female, former business associate / ex- girlfriend and that women's son. Accoding to John G. Raurcci, special agent incharge of the Mississippi FBI, Boyd is accused of making 5 threatening telephone calls, however authorities were unwhilling to disclose anymore information. Oil Can faces up to 25 years in prison and fines of $250,100.

Saturday, November 26, 2005

Christopher Piersall

Christopher Piersall, son of a former Red Sox outfielder Jimmy Piersall, was arrested on Tuesday, November 22, 2005 with 50 pounds of marijuana including 150 live marijuana plants . I believe a man to be innocent until proven guilty, but based on the quantities involved, some have speculated that Mr. Piersall intended to sell some of this product. The police used infrared photography to detect high intensity lights typical of marijuana cultivation at the Piersall residence, which lead to Piersall's arrest. If Mr. Peirsall intends to claim the 50 pounds of marijuana were for personal use I suggest he call to the stand this guy who can roll really big joints.

Friday, November 25, 2005


I can’t explain this phenomena but I can relish it. For some reason, wool is no longer itchy. Recently, I bought a pair of wool socks and expected to have warm but scratchy feet, but to my surprise the wool socks weren’t itchy. I even wore one wool sock and one cotton sock and found they were equivalently comfortable. I was free to enjoy the benefits of wool that hippies have been telling me about all these years such as warm toes, while, magically, the wool whisks away moisture from the bottom of my feet, without the maddening tickle. I imagine humans have been wearing wool for thousands of years and with the exception for Cashmere Indians and other pockets of brilliance, they’ve all been uncomfortable. But no longer. I suspect the comfort of fleece forced the wool magnates to come up with a better product. Who knew the free market could lead to something useful? This is particularly exciting for me because wool socks need less washing. Now with enough pairs of underwear I estimate I can limit myself to a bi-annual laundry.

Another Third Basman?

We got Josh Beckett which is good, undeniably. He's injury prone with tendonitis--the type of thing that never goes away--but he's a proven ace and Yankee killer. However, another third baseman Mike Lowell slipped in and Hanely Ramirez slipped away. Why mess aroud with third base? Even if we lost free agent Billy Mueller, we had Youkilis to stabilize the position until Hanely Ramirez is ready. We gain Lowell, a steady fielder, but crap hitter; and certainly lose a proven hitter and underrated fielder in Mueller, and again leave Youkilis to wander around the diamond looking around for an empty position. And I refuse to believe Hanely Ramirez was all hype. He was an awesome talent with the personality for a big, baseball city. I feel like you only deal a prospect like H. Ramirez when you know you will be competing of a pennant the following year. Or maybe in July when you are competing for a playoff spot. Not in November when there's still so many questions around guys like Damon and Manny. So now we're looking at a season which most likely with not include Manny, Damon, Mueller, and Millar. With the bedrock of the team gone, it sounds like a 60% rebuilding year--not the time to trade your number 1 prospect.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

I Walk the Line Again: The Johnny Cash Movie Part II

I just got back from watching the Johnny Cash movie, "I Walk the Line", which I didn't see as quickly as I would of liked because I've been busy shooting "I Walk the Line Again", the sequel to the current Johnny Cash movie.

The first film in the Johnny Cash trilogy was good. Hardcore fans appreciated a scene in the end where Joaquin takes a lit cigarette out of Luther Perkin's mouth. In real life Luther dies when he falls asleep while smoking and this cigarette removal was a nod to Luther Perkins fans presumably.

However, I picture Johnny Cash being smarter, having a sense of humor, being more religious, and more Southern. June Carter is portrayed as particularly un-Southern. I'm not really sure how I measure Southern-ness, but I imagine two hicks being less uptight, depressive, and less aware of things like addiction. But alas, movies inevitably use broodiness to convey depth. Hollywood is reflecting the idea that creative people are morose not creating it so we can't blame them. People must hold on to ideas like humor kills creativity or gothy types will never get chicks.

Anyway I'm not here to complain about the situation. I'm here to rectify it. As I mentioned above I have been filming the next Johnny Cash movie. The first change you might notice between Cash movie I and Cash movie II is that Johnny Cash will no longer be played by Joaquin Phoenix and instead will be played by me. I was initially against this idea, but I relented to constant pressure from my staff. In my version of the Johnny Cash movie when Sam Philips first meets Johnny Cash (me), Philips will not give a sappy speech about keeping it real, but will say what the legend has him saying: "go out and sin, and then bring me something I can sell." Also the time Johnny Cash tried to get from his room to his bassist, Marshall Grant's, room by chopping through the hotel wall with an axe will play a prominent role in the film. In general Johnny Cash won't throw fits because of traumas in his life, but instead will break things because it's fun. Moreover, the plot will center around a well documented fight Johnny Cash had with an ostrich. Johnny Cash drunkenly tired to punch the ostrich and missed. The ostrich flew into the air and came down planting his ostrich, thumb-claw into Johnny Cash's sternum. Johnny Cash nearly died from the wound but had the presence of mind to bring his own supply of drugs to the hospital for fear the hospital might not have enough drugs. He concealed his personal stash under his stitches; however puss from the wound dissolved the pills and sent them into his blood stream. Some sort of delusional, frenzy ensued. Johnny Cash thought army commandos had taken over the hospital. He tried to fight them off, ran around the hospital, and had to be restrained by police. The film will conclude with Kris Kristofferson flying a helicopter on to Cash's lawn to drop off a demo tape. Then I will continue to talk and dress like Johnny Cash for several months after shooting.

Monday, November 14, 2005

Congratulations A-Rod

A-Rod gets the MVP. I say we push for a gold glove for Papi.

It should be noted that Peter Gammons voted for David Ortiz over A-Rod, and Dan Shaughnessy’s ballot remains secret.

Chuck Schumer

Jordanian police recently arrested Sajida Mubarak al-Rishawi, 35, an Iraqi women who is possibly the scariest looking person I've ever seen in my life. She is the Iraqi who along with her husband plotted to destroy a Jordanian hotel in a suicide bombing. Her husband was successful killing mainly Jordanians at a wedding celebration. Sajida Mubarak al-Rishawi bombs failed to explode, and now she is living proof that the war in Iraq has spread terrorism, not cut it off.

However, at home Democratic Senators such as supposed Bush basher, Chuck Schumer, remain stubborn to the point of absurdity, on their defense of their vote on the war. Schumer leads the chorus of "We didn't support the war. We only voted to give the president the authority to go to war, not the war itself." And yes, that vote is different from a vote for the war. However a more powerful anti-war stance would have been a vote against giving Bush the authority. AND more to the point, the difference between voting for or against the authority to go to war has been obvious to everyone for nearly 3 years. So why stick to the useless line of reasoning about voting for the authority but against the war? To not appear as a "flip-flopper"? Bush is the ultimate "flip-flopper" on his justifications for war and it's taken years of terrible leadership for anyone to care. The "pro authority for war" democrats destroy the coherence in their party. They must admit the war was a mistake before the country can take a realistic look at the situation.

Saturday, November 12, 2005

Johnny Cash Movie

We are now only six days away from the Johnny Cash movie. For what I understand it follows the standard conventions of the rockumentary of which I will never tire: a young talent, a drug spiral nearly destroying the young talent, and then a redeeming comeback with a love story.

For those who might be interested in an extended free online video that's totally separate from the movie you might want to check out: It features Johnny Cash and not Joaquin Phoenix singing, a welcome departure from the movie; however it also features Johnny Cash acting... Enough said. In all seriousness, I'm in favor of Joaquin's singing in the Johnny Cash movie. Trying to dub in Cash's real vocals would just be weird.

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Tribulations of tee shirt reading

I try not to read tee shirts because too often someone puts all this work into cultivating an interesting look, then defines his/her entire image on one sentence.

It is sentences on shirts that are the problem. A word or sentence fragment is fine and almost unavoidable while shirt shopping. However complete albeit empty thoughts like “Defend Brooklyn” worn by wealthy transplants, bring up questions like “Is Brooklyn yours to defend?” Maybe “take over Brooklyn” would be more honest. But recently I saw a shirt that sent me running home to proof read all my cloths. It said “I did your boyfriend” and was worn by a pregnant women. Maybe she got the joke and was just super ironic. Maybe she’s so ironic that she got the shirt, then screwed someone’s dude just to be walking, breathing irony. I’ll give her the benefit of the doubt. However, I hereby pledge abstain from full-sentence-shirts in the future.


Raise a glass to the Artic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWAR). It survives another day and has a cool acronym.

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Winter Ball in the DR

Is your pro or college basketball team terrible? Are you too short or uncoordinated to even watch basketball? We’ll join me (via the web, not in real life please) as I cover Dominican Winter Ball on the blog. The Little Angel Fish and I are going down to the DR over winter beak, so I will be able to cover the Dominican Professional Baseball League. It’s the Aguilas versus the Tigres and cheap Presidentes in the sun for me!

Monday, November 07, 2005

Stonewall Part II: The Gay One

The Stonewall riots (or alternatively the Stonewall rebellion) kicked off on Friday, June 27, 1969 when police raided the Stonewall Inn and continued for several nights. The police raided Stonewall, a gay bar in New York's West Village, on the premise that it sold alcohol without a liquor license. Cops entered the bar at 1:20 AM and forced the patrons to file out in a procession that became a transvestite Academy Awards show according to the Daily News reports at the time. The cops smashed up the booze bottles and confiscated the cash register, fistfights broke out, and pretty soon a full on riot with an estimated 2000 people was underway. To the credit of the rioters, they took much of the fanfare and festive spirit which characterizes later gay rights movements (and makes it unique among rights movements) to their rioting. There was singing and dancing, as well as bottle throwing and billy clubbing. Although gay rights movements had been swelling in major cities in the US and Europe for most of the 1960s, the Stonewall riot/rebellion became a rallying point for gay civil rights.

Today google searches on the word "Stonewall" bring more hits for Stonewall the bar than Stonewall the Confederate General. The Confederate General and gay bar are distant nick relatives, though they both were involved in rebellious activity of a very different kind.

Friday, November 04, 2005

Stonewall part I

For a long time I've thought Stonewall was a good nickname--not for me, but a good nickname nonetheless. It's not often a nickname is bucolic and badass at the same time.

The first Stonewall one is likley to come across is confederate war hero Stonewall Jackson (1824 - 1863). Stonewall lived a miserable life typical of the 18th century historical figure. When he was 2 in 1826, his father and sister died of typhoid. Then, his mother died in child birth (1831) and brother of TB (1841). He married in 1853, but his wife died in 1854 along with his son the same year. His second wife lived till 1915, but their kid died. All Stonewall's beloved pets also perished prematurely. Stonewall acquired his nickname in the 1st battle of Manassas for bravely leading his troops in defense of an abominable, slave-based, economic system, outdated even for its time. All the death around Stonewall (and by Stonewall) culminated in his own death in 1863. Stonewall was accidentally shot and killed by his own troops during the battle of Chacellorsville. Oddly Stonewall Jackson is both bucolic and badass although his bloody fight for slavery prevents him from being a net plus to the nickname.

Next Stonewall to be featured: Stonewall the gay bar.

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Oil Can't Be Stopped

The opposite of the man with history's worst nickname of all time, I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby, naturally has history's best: "Oil Can." When Oil Can Boyd, Boston Red Sox pitcher from 1982-1989, refers to oil he means beer. Oil is the nickname of choice for beer in Oil Can's hometown of Meridian, Mississippi. On the other hand, Scooter Libby confused oil with beer when he helped start a war to gain greater access to oil reserves (had Saddam been sitting on a large portion of the world's hops, imperialist expansion may have been more understandable).

According to legend, Dennis Eckersley (the Eck) bestowed Dennis Ray Boyd with the name Oil Can not just because Boyd called beer oil, but because Boyd consumed the brown and fizzy in such quantity that calling him Oil Can just seemed obvious. At the time Eckersley was Red Sox beer drinking royalty, and I picture Boyd's nicknaming not unlike King Arthur knighting Lancelot.

Boyd's professional career peaked with the Sox in 1985 when he recorded 15 wins and 117 strikeouts, but Oil Can is remembered most for his style. On the pitcher's mound, Oil Can notoriously fought with umpires, managers, and opposing players, as well as talking to himself, the ball, and the spirit of Satchel Page. In July of 1986, Oil Can was institutionalized after getting left off the All-Star Team, but emerged from the nut house in early August to pitch the rest of the 86 season (finishing the season with a career high 16 wins).

The Oil Can was also a keen critic of sports complex design declaring "that's what they get for building a stadium on the ocean," after a game was cancelled due to fog in Cleveland.

Blood clots in Oil Can's arm stymied Boyd and contributed to his retirement in 1991 from the Texas Rangers. The Oil Can continued to distinguish himself after his career in the MLB ended pitching in Puerto Rico, Mexico, and thoughtout the semi-pro American leagues. In 1994, while playing in the Northern League, Oil Can became the first male professional pitcher to start against a team of girls, the Colorado Silver Bullets. The Oil Can dominated the girls, shutting them out 19 - 0. On May 30, 2005, Oil Can started for the minor league Brockton Rox against the Worcester Tornadoes. A 45-year-old Oil Can filled Fitton Field in Worcester with 4,296 fans. "There's a lot of people in a lot of places that want me to succeed," Oil Can told reporters. "Right now, there's a lot of love going from me." Brockton's manager added, "he [Oil Can] is not normal."

Monday, October 31, 2005

No Dude, I’m Serious…

Theo Epstein (the “boy wonder”, “wiz kid” or simply “guy who gets much tail around Boston”) resigned today after rejecting a 3-year, 1.5 million dollar per year contract from the Boston Red Sox. Epstein had been the Red Sox General Manager (GM) in charge hiring, firing, trading, and drafting players since 2002. The Sox tried to buy out Oakland As GM, Billy Beane, a few years ago for 2.2 million, so the Sox could have gone higher than 1.5 million. Of course, Epstein is far less established and innovative than Billy Beane, and Epstein is unlikely to get a higher offer from another team. Theo Epstein was the youngest GM ever at 28 and the youngest to put together a world series winning team at 30.

Weirdly, Epstein resigned while I was sitting in Applied Regression class thinking about the Epstein contract dispute. Right when I came to the conclusion that I most certainly would accept the Red Sox offer had they purposed it to me, the Prof. called on me to explain why I would make dummy variables from a continuous measure. I answered by repeating what I could remember of the question back in a new word order hoping that might constitute an answer.

Even more bizarrely, Johnny Damon “the Caveman Centerfielder” bought a house across the shore from my uncle in Maine. Next summer we could all blue fish together. More on that to come.

This all may be too much to handle right now. The Damon news is amazingly good, the Epstein news is bad, and both are a little scary. If my brother, dzusa, hasn’t heard either of these news items, I would recommend he take them one at a time, sitting down, with several Budweisers in range.

Both the “Wiz Kid” and “Caveman Centerfielder” rank somewhere between Oil Can and Scooter on the all time nickname list with the “Caveman Centerfielder” above “Wiz Kid” …

Friday, October 28, 2005

Nicknames from Worst to First

First, the worst: Scooter Libby.

I know this may feel like a cheap time to belittle the man for his name. After all most of us aren't responsible for our nicknames anyway. So in the sake of fairness let's put aside that 'scooter' to me connotes motorbikes that swarthy European men drive while they nearly hit me as I wander lost through their nation's capitals. Let's put aside that, while the Europeans do not swerve to miss me, they do manage to hit me with a cigarette butt, and steal my girlfriend. But let us not forget that Scooter was among the men who defrauded their way to our war.

And let's question how a man who has committed indictable offenses in the service the president, and whose last name sounds oddly like the recent patriarch of presidential, staff conspirators, G. Gordon Liddy, ended up with a nickname that replaces his first name. Scooter's real name, Lewis is fine. It's that Libby-Liddy thing that might need covering up.

For those of you who question my legitimacy in the blogosphere, I'd like you to take note of the time and day of this posting.

More on nicknames to come.

Thursday, October 27, 2005

The Cannon Blackberry

A word of advice to all white collar criminals and crooked politicians: after you write an e-mail, erase it from your sent mail, hit your computer with a baseball bat, burn the remains, and then shoot the ashes from a cannon. One should fire computer ashes chronicling ones own criminal activities particularly far. A prediction this blogger can make with some confidence is when Fitzgerald finally gets done indicting White House hooligans, it's all going to hinge on a few, absent minded emails with embarrassing grammatical errors (not unlike this blog). Mr. Rove has already gotten himself in trouble with an e-mail that discussed his conversation with Mathew Cooper, a chat that Rove told the grand jury never happened. And Matt Copper's e-mails with his Time magazine bosses helped to get Scooter Libby indicted today.

Among the many crooks who may wish they had followed my advice despite the expense is Ken Lay. All the Enron e-mails are now available on the web as part of a cyber public flogging.

I know someone who works in securities fraud investigations, and he recently told me that e-mails provide the bulk of the evidence in his work.

Linking this thinking with the wave of hi-tech mini-gadgets in one (e.g. the cell phone-camera-MP3 player), I intend to pioneer a device which both sends e-mails through the web, and fires sent e-mails from a cannon.

The Cannon-Blackberry device will also launch amateur skateboarding footage even if no crime was captured on film. Nothing against skateboarding—it’s just been documented enough.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Baseball Almanac

I just found a tremendous baseball website:

It’s got everything from team histories going back to the middle of the 19th century, to recent standings and payrolls, to what appears to be a complete transcript of Casey Stengel’s 1958 Senate anti-trust hearing. You can listen to parts of Casey Stengel’s actual testimony on Real Audio. At one stage, Stengel obfuscates with a 121 word sentence.

Blue Fish Who?

Many people have been contacting the blog asking where the name "Blue Fish Canoe" originated. The nom de plum and blog title (for some reason I thought they should be the same) come from how my uncle, brother, and I would fish for blue fish in my youth. The blue fish has excellent hearing and would be scared away by a motorboat, so we'd cast off a small canoe. When we caught one, we'd bring the beast aboard the canoe and a battle royal between fish and fishermen would ensue. Although they can be found close to shore in northern New England (where we were), the blue fish is a 20-inch long sea bastard. I once inspected a blue fish mouth before he/she went in the frying pan, and concluded her/his teeth could bite off a finger like a virgin Mach3 razor blade slicing through a high school boy's stubble.

I intend to blog with the same death or glory approach with which I fish.

Up next: a discussion of nicknames from Scooter Libby (the worst) to Oil Can Boyd (the best).

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

One step for me...

I just ran into fellow blogger, Cuddles, the friendly bassinet ,and immediately broke rule number one of my blog, by asking him if he’d read my blog. Luckily for all he had.

Check out his blog at

One leap for you

I’m glad you’re joining me on my first, shaky steps in the blogosphere. I’m finding it to be a bit of a disappointment. It took virtually no time to acclimatize to my new surrounding. I have experienced no dizziness or shortness of breath, no snow squalls followed by tee-shirt weather and skiing, and baseballs (well wiffle balls) travel no further in the blogosphere than they do in the regular atmosphere.

I will press on with my disclaimer at approximately the same weight I had in the atmosphere. The disclaimer: when you see the real flesh and bones me, he will assume you have no knowledge of this blog. This is to avoid awkward conversations like:

you: Cheney’s in trouble now ehh?
me: Ya, I wrote about it on my blog.
you: I’d say Cheney’s going to be out by Spring.
me: Hey I predict that on my blog. Do you mean to tell me that you haven’t been reading my blog! [Followed by tears, and an exchange of blows that look more like open hand slaps.]

Now that we’ve dispensed with the formalities, on to my first political prediction: Dick Cheney resigns by Spring due to "health problems" though everyone knows it's because he's taking too much heat from Plame, Bush, Iraq etc. The VP-ship becomes the least attractive political position in the US as association with the current administration becomes a scarlet letter. The Vice Presidency gets outsourced to Bangalore and we are all shamed by the new VP’s mustache. However our South Asian Veep has surprising charisma, and popularizes the man-skirt.

More to come.