HELLO FROM EAU CLAIRE, WISCONSIN:

HELLO FROM EAU CLAIRE, WISCONSIN - merchants slogan: "We don't have it but we can get it for you."

Friday, December 28, 2007


After spendng Christmas eve, Christmas day, and december 26 (my mother-in-law Joy's birthday) in the Twin cities, i returned late yesterday afternoon amd did some errands that needed doing.

Then later in the evening, I sat down to watch some college football (Texas vs Arizona State) and I just happened to glance down at my left hand to realize that my wedding ring was not there!

How very weird! I have no idea where or how I could have lost it!

today I went down to Tomah for a Heagle family gathering. We probably shouldn't have even attempted it. We saw a lot of cars in the ditch and on the way back, east bound traffic was backed up for miles and miles because of a jack- knifed semi truck.

As soon as I got home, I restocked the stove with firewood here at the office and went in search of a weddng band at Kohl's. I felt "naked" without my wedding ring! Lucky for me, there was an after Christmas sale going on and I got a really good deal on a gold band.

Now we'll see if the other one shows up. that's usually what happens, you know!

My friend Andy Muenich sent me this photo of the new cereal that is now out on the market. I got a good chuckle out of it!

Thursday, December 27, 2007

JUST A TASTE OF THE 50 MOST LOATHSOME FOR 2007

THE CARICTURES AND DESCRIPTIONS BELOW WERE TAKEN FROM A SITE LOCATED AT THE URL:

www.buffalobeast.com

They were forwarded to me by my good friend stan Johnson and I think you should check them out!

CRAIG -- CONSERVATIVE QUEEN -- NOT THAT THERE'S ANYTHING WRONG WITH THAT

Larry Craig

Charges: This year's eminent toe-tappin' conservative queen of hypocrisy. Thought the Defense of Marriage Act was FABULOUS! -- because he personally needs legislation to keep him straight. Didn't work. Brought unwanted knowledge of the intricate culture of anonymous gay public restroom sex into America's living rooms. Embodies both the cause and result of faith-based sexual repression. Insists on dragging out the least plausible public denial of buggery since Liberace's, presumably for the benefit of his frozen-smiled, slowly maddening wife.

Exhibit A: "I am not gay. I never have been gay."

Sentence: Stoned to death.

MR VANILLA FLIPPITY FLOP FLIPPITY FLOP

MITT ROMNEY

Charges: America's first clip-art presidential candidate, Romney is a strange mixture of game show host looks and android charm. A true flip-flopper, Romney's ability to turn on an ideological dime is unparalleled, but his excuses are so inauthentic that even Republicans have trouble suspending their disbelief.

Exhibit A: "You can't have freedom without religion, and you can't have religion without freedom."

Sentence: Strapped to the roof of his family car, which his dog attempts to drive across the country, but crashes horribly (because dogs can't drive, of course). Romney's flesh burns off in the ensuing fire, revealing him to be a standard protocol droid set to world domination mode. Narrowly edged out of primary race by Huckabee.

ATLANTA FALCON TURNS TO DOGS



MICHAEL VICK

Charges: Abusing, strangling, electrocuting and murdering a promising NFL career -- and some dogs. Reinforces noxious stereotypes about both jocks and black men. Inspired Whoopi Goldberg to express an opinion.

Exhibit A: Makes millions for throwing ball, decides to invest in gambling on dog fights. How much dumber do people get than this?

I think it imporant to get into the mindset of these million dollar athletes. I really do think that they think they are above the law and can do pretty much anything that they decide to do, illegal, kinky, or otherwise.

Look at Randy Moss' behavior with the Minneapolis police while they were issuing him a parking ticket.

Vick's Sentence? He should be slathered in barbecue sauce and set loose naked in a PETA-operated shelter for vicious dogs.


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Sunday, December 23, 2007

All I Want For Christmas Is A Packer Trouncing of the Bears

Chicago, Illinois Weather Forecast, Sunday, December 23:

Hazardous Weather Outlook
Wind Advisory

Today: A 40 percent chance of snow showers. Mostly cloudy, with a steady temperature around 21. Breezy, with a west southwest wind around 25 mph, with gusts as high as 40 mph.

Tonight: A 30 percent chance of snow showers. Cloudy, with a low around 23. Breezy, with a west wind between 20 and 25 mph, with gusts as high as 35 mph.

And the Packers are going to bring it to the not so awesome NFC champions tody.

My Observations (for what they are worth)

Look for the short passing game to re-assert itself as well as the running game (hopefully McCarthy drilled them hard all week on their sloppy screen pass technique) due to predicted winds gusting up to 35 mph -- and look for Brett to throw more than one pick if he throws long into that swirling Soldier Field wind.

All the Pack has to do is concentrate on the job at hand and beat the living snot out of Chicago. MM has been superb on keeping his team focused all season.

I like this matching the Cowpies Tit for Tat in the last two regular season games! Romo's Homos ( not that there's anything wrong with that) didn't look all that good against Carolina, a team that we mopped the floor with..

Great snow storm. Just getting the office stove fired up. I really do love the rhythm of Sundays -- getting up when you feel like it, the comfort of ritual. Trudging through the snow knowing there will be fresh hot coffee and juice and building a fire in the stove. Nice.

Go, Pack, GO!

Will try to write more after the game!

####################################

Coming out of the shock of watching the Bears hand the Packers their buttocks on a platter with a side of humility. Everything the Bears executed so well, the Pack totally failed at -- we couldn't even handle snaps from center.

It was pretty obvious from the beginning that this game was a matter of intense pride for the Bruins of the Midway -- their two wins over the Packers consitute their Super Bowl this season.

For the first time since I have watched Green Bay play in cold weather, it really seemed to be affecting them. With 20 some seconds left in the first half, Favre made a beeline for the warmth of the dressing rooms with no thought of trying to run one more play.

So here we go -- down to Dallas after a week off and memories of the awful beatings Favre (0-9) has gone through in Texas Stadium.

I love these guys, it has been an amazing season, but I think we need to come to grips with the fact that they are a young team, if not the youngest in the NFL and this was a great year of experience and growth.

I'm not counting them out yet. But in a way, I guess it wouldn't be that bad a deal if the Cowboys end up facing the Patriots in the Super Bowl because I don't think anybody in the NFC can handle the AFC champs.

But we Cheeseheads don't like it when we lose do we? it is really of importance to us. And I think that we should be proud of that attitude. The Packers are an extension of US.

And we know how to handle defeat as well as victory. we don't turn on our team and abandon ship if they lose a game or even lose more than they win, as long as we know they are playing their hearts out.

So, Go, Pack, Go! We love you, win or lose!

____________________________________________________________

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Saturday, December 22, 2007

These Are The times That Try Men's Souls

My son Jon's all-too-brief Christmas visit just ended as he left to be in Madison by dinner time. We were a bit concerned about the incoming weather, but it has stayed warm enough that I am fairly certain I-94 is going to stay clear.

It is always good to have him here, to be able to cook some good home meals for him and to watch him really unwind once he has settled in to the quiet of the office and the joy of the wood stove.

Highway 94 mayby be clear, but not so my office back steps -- as I was leaving to go over to the house momentarily after feeding the stove, I made one of those moves on the second step that if I hadn't caught myself, would have raised holy hell with my tailbone.

As our hired man used to say about ice like that: "slicker'n snot on a door knob." or slicker'n cow slobber!" Now is not the time of year to take your footng for granted! Now I see where people end up breaking hips.

The other day (I think I may have mentioned this in blog past) while I was up in Hayward, some "patriot" removed my "Bush is a war Criminal" sticker from my car.

When did we as Americans teach ourselves NOT to think!

In 2002, an election year, Karl Rove and George Bush began the march to war with Iraq. The American people (that's you and me, pal) were told that Iraq was tied to the attacks of 9/11 and that it posed a threat to the United States. Bush said Iraq already had weapons of mass destruction and was developing nuclear weapons. We now know his reasons for ging to war were false. And George Bush must have known some were untrue, even as he repeated them.

Now, with a Presidential election likely to turn on the disaster in Iraq, Bush has been threatening war with Iran, arguing falsely that the country is on the verge of developing nuclear weapons. The Washington Post reported that National Security Advisor Stephan Hadley "said Bush first learned in August or September about intelligence indicating Iran had halted its weapons program .." Yet on October 17m Bush continued to paint a picture of a nuclear Iran and invoked the spectre of World War Three.

On December 4, Bush lied about when he found out Irran had no nuclear weapons program, saying: "I was made aware of the NIE (National Intelligence estimate) last week." His rhetoric against Iran goes unabated.

A resolution is being introduced in the House of Representatives by Neil Abercrombie of Hawaii. If explicitly states that George Bush has been given no authority to go to war with Iran. It is a sad commentary on the Bush presidency that the resolution is vital and must be passsed! Otherwise, there is no telling what George Bush might do.

Now, more than ever, it is time to become an active American citizen -- a true patriot -- and call all your duly elected representatives and tell them to take a stand. Bush must be stopped. Our very freedom and security are at risk.

Friday, December 21, 2007

"Walk Hard" -- A Hilarious Deconstruction of the Musical/Biopic Genre

Jonathan and I just got back from the Greng's Theatres, having taken in "Walk Hard -- The Dewey Cox Story". The matinee theatre was empty save a few souls mid way towards the back of the theatre.

"Walk Hard" is no great work of art, not even comedically, but Jon and I took it at face value and laughed ourselves silly over its silliness.

We particularly enjoyed the Bob Dylan sendup.

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This just in from a Doctor of Mixology: (bartender)

Drinks Which Reflect Personality
Before you order a drink in public, you should read this! Seven New
York City bartenders were asked if they could 'nail' a woman's
personality based on what she drinks. Though interviewed separately,
they concurred on almost all counts. The results:


PART A: WOMEN-DRINKS, WHO THEY ARE, & YOU!

Drink: Beer
Personality: Causal, low-maintenance; down to earth.
Your Approach: Challenge her to a game of pool.

Drink: Blender Drinks
Perso nality: Flaky, whiny, annoying; a pain in the ass.
Your Approach: Avoid her, unless you want to be her cabana boy.

Drink: Mixed Drinks
Personality: Older, more refined, high maintenance, has very picky
taste; knows EXACTLY what she wants.
Your Approach: You won't have to approach her . If she's interested,
she'll send YOU a drink..................

Drink: Wine (does not include White Zinfandel)
Personality: Conservative and classy; sophisticated yet giggles.
Your Approach: Tell her you love to travel and spend quiet evenings
with my friends.


Drink: White Zinfandel
Personality: Easy; thinks she is classy and sophisticated, actually,
she has NO clue.
Your Approach: Make her feel smarter than she is...this should be an
easy target.


Drink: Shots
Personality: Likes to hang with pals and looking to get totally
drunk.... and naked.
Your Approach: Easiest hit in the joint. You have been blessed.
Nothing to do but wait, however, be careful not to make her mad!


Drink: Tequila
No explanations required - everyone just KNOWS what happens there.




PART B: MAN-DRINKS & WHO THE MEN ARE!

THEN, there is the MALE addendum -- The deal with guys is, as
always, very simple and clear cut:

Domestic Beer: He's poor and wants to get laid.
Imported Beer: He likes good beer and wants to get laid .

Wine:
He is hoping that the wine will give him a sophisticated image
to help him get laid.

Whiskey: He doesn't give a damn about anything but getting laid.

Tequila: He is thinking he has a chance with the toothless
waitress.

White Zinfandel: He's gay

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Hey! the Green Bay Packer Throw back helmet search worked out! My thanks to Andy Hyman of Distant Replays in Atlanta, Georgia, who obviously has a lot of pull in the sports supply business, as I received these e mails from him this morning:

We are pleased to notify you that your order has been processed and your credit card has been charged. Items from our store usually ship within 24 hours. Some items ship from different warehouses, so your order may arrive in multiple shipments. Please allow adequate time for your package to arrive - Overnight: 1-2 business days, 2nd Day: 2-3 business days, Saver: 3-5 business days). Custom merchandise will arrive in the time indicated in the product description. Thank you again for your patronage. Come back soon!

Order# 43601
***********************************************
Shipping Tracking Information
***********************************************


***********************************************
Credit Card Information
***********************************************
Name: Lawrence Heagle
Type: Visa
CC#: Not E-mailed for Security


***********************************************
Billing Information
***********************************************
Lawrence Heagle
4888 Hobbs Road

So I wrote the big boss man, himelf, Andy Hyman:

From: Lawrence Heagle [mailto:lheagle@larryheagle.com]
Sent: Thursday, December 20, 2007 11:33 PM
To: Andy Hyman
Subject: Re: Your Order Has Been Processed

On Dec 20, 2007, at 6:26 PM, info@distantreplays.com wrote:

Dear Andy:

Is this a FOR SURE since we spoke? Did you actually find one on a dark dusty shelf? Or are you charging my account before you actually know you have the product? If you did find one and are sending it -- YOU ARE LIKE A GOD TO ME!

To which Andy replied:

Would I charge your card for the heck of it? OF COURSE I WOULD! But I charged it because I FOUND your silly helmet and you will have it within 10 business days (2 weeks). Now I have power over thee for eternity......I will get you the tracking # when it officially is heading your way. Merry Christmas to you and yours Larry and thanks for the business -

Andy Hyman, Owner
Distant Replays
Tel. 770-953-2722
Fax 770-953-2723

___________________________________________________________

I guess you can tell that Mr. Hyman and I have established a "working relationship" over the last couple of years since i began my sports paraphanalia collection.

Last night's turkey dinner came out really juicy and flavorful. I am now convinced (after two of their birds) that the Honeysuckle brand tukey is the best on the market.

We are all set for tonight's dinner with a choice of hot turkey and gravy with cranberries, or tender, slow-cooked sliced bottom round roast and gravy which I prepared in the crock pot two days ago.

Then I think Jon, Kim and I will settle back and watch DVD's for the evening. Kim has now finished her last complete autumn semester as a teacher -- bring on the new year and spring retirement!


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Thursday, December 20, 2007

Of Love and Hate for The Technical World


So a few days ago I deceided that I was going to add an authentic Riddell RK Throwback Packers helmet to my Green Bay office shrine/altar.

I began casting about the internet to find the lowest price and located what I wanted at several sites. However, upon contacting all of the sites, they all told me the same story: They no longer carry that particular helmet and that Riddell has stopped making them altogether.

This mornng I made my last ditch effort, contacting Andy Hyman at Distant Replays in Atlanta, Georgia. He siad he is doing his best to locate one for me and to keep a positive attitude because he is "pretty certain" that he will be able to locate one somewhere.

If he does, it will be a pretty special addition! As the years go by it should really increase in value. The primary reason I wanted it is because I have a more recent example already and wanted to get this one because it is the helmet that was worn by Packer greats of the 1960's and the first two Super Bowls.

I'm not holding my breath on this one -- but it sure would be cool if I could land one!

My son Jonathan arrived early this afternoon. Man, it is so good to see him and be able to spend a couple of days with him! Last time we spoke by phone, I told him I wanted to make a turkey and all the trimmings for him in celebration of his visit.

I have it in the oven right now. Running a little late on getting it started because I had to run Kim's computer in to Best Buy as she was having trouble downloading and sending e mail since I installed the antivirus program she bought from them last week. They talked her into something other than Norton.

As it turns out, there are no conflicts in soft wear. One of her friends (she has several that insist on doing this) sent her some kind of enormous video download that totally tied up the system and the computer, which only runs a baud rate of 26.4 at the house, finally times out and kicks her off e mail.

Because she can't get it downloaded, neither can she get messages out. I don't know how many times I have told her to tell her friends NOT TO SEND LARGE FILES, but it keeps happening.

Today I finally had to call WWT and have a tech go in and find the offending gargantuan download and rip it out of her incoming mail -- this after unhooking her tgower, running over to Best Buy, then bringing it back and hooking it up again.

Then to top it off, when i tried to dial on, the modem would not dial on and I was fit to be tied. so I did the computer equivalent of lifting the hood on the car and kicking the tires. i shut down the computer, unpluggged it, and then plugged it back in again. then of course -- a dial tone.

God, I hate computers! Not mine though! I love my IMac! I love my IMac! Are you listening, machine? I love you!

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Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Reading Up On NFL Past and Present -- Looking Forward to January 4th at the Heyde


Today I am at the point where I had best get done the things that only really need to "get done" and then I need to get some sleep. I tend to run for long perids without getting proper rest.

I know that part of this is just part of the contract of getting older, but i need to start making a concerted effort to rest more.

Today's photo is the one that is being used in the promotion of the concert of January 4, 2008, at the Heyde Center. More about that later.

Having finished the biography on Joe Namath (which, frankly, left me a bit sad for the guy, as his wife got into the "I've got to find myself mode", didn't want to be known just as Mrs. Joe Namath, blah, blah, blah, and really broke his heart by taking from him the two people he loved most in his life, his daughters) , I went on a book buying spree yesterday.

Whereas several months ago it was anything and everything to do with World War Two, now I am into reading about my football icons.

I finished Paul Hornung's "Lombardi and Me" and am currently reading "Nitschke" while I am at the house, and "Jim Brown" (The fierce Life of an American Hero) by Mike Freeman while I have leisure time at the office.

Also yesterday I picked up one of a series of very nice glossy finish books -- this one entitled "Favre" by Brett and his momma Bonita. There are others in the same format that I have looked over briefly at Borders -- one on Walter Payton and one on Joe Namath, both of which sell for $30.00 and come with a 40 minute DVD.

I couldn't resist the Favre book because not only is it loaded with great photos, but the narrative is very personal and revealing, the 40 minute DVD is really, really good -- worth watching again and again as it really gives an in deoth insight into Brett's character and personality.

The other thing that made it impossible to pass up is that it is available at Sam's Club for the really low price of $18.88! So if you are a Favre fan, this one is a real MUST HAVE!

Happy to announce that I picked up another gig, signed, sealed, and delivered, for January 5, 2008, the night after the concert at the Heyde Center in Chippewa. It means a long drive to Iron River, but hey --that's what I do for a living! The performing is the easy part.

I am getting more and more excited about the concert at the Heyde Center on Friday, January 4. Thanks to the Green Bay Packers great team play, I won't be clashing with a playoff game that night as the Packers got a first round bye when Fat Poohbah Holmgren lost last weekend. Sweet!

My long time friend and fellow musician/songwriter Jerry Way is doing me the honor of opening my show at the Heyde and I am most grateful.

I hope I will see many of you at the Heyde concert. Tickets are already on sale now. You can check out all the activities at the Heyde by typing: www.cvca.net in your browser.

Gotta run and do some errands so I can get a little cat nap in yet this afternoon!

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Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Finished Holiday Gigs -- Successfully, Mostly

It's good to be a Green Bay Packer fan. It's good to be a Green Bay Packer fan. It's good to be a Green Bay Packer fan. It's good to be a Green Bay Packer fan. It's good to be a Green Bay Packer fan. It's good to be a Green Bay Packer fan. It's good to be a Green Bay Packer fan.

I watched the Bears and the Vikings fumble and bumble their way though four quarters of mediocre football last night and I would like to say it yet again: It's good to be a Green Bay Packer fan.

From the Metrodome response (with the help of strategically placed huge rock and roll speakers along the side line that pipe in taped crowd noise), you'd think that the Vikings are on their way to the Super bowl.

I think some of those poor misguided unfortunates believe they really are.

More and more I have been picturing a grand finish to this NFL season where Dallas loses one of their remaining games, probably to their most vociferous rival, the Washington Redskins, and the Packers run the table, bringing the Cowboys to the frozen tundra on January 13, just in time for a new millenium replay of the ice bowl.

It could happen. It has been that kind of miraculous season.

And then it would be on to the Super Bowl against Bully Billicheck and his Patriots. If we could gain revenge for our last appearance and loss back in 1998, I could take to my death bed a very happy man.

Congratulations to Brett Favre for breakng yeat another National football League record last sunday against the St. Louis Rams. the slant pass to Donald Driver put him past Dan Marino's previous record of most yards gained through the air.

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I am really running on empty today and it is all my own fault.

Sunday night I played an employee Christmas party at the Ramada Inn, Hayward. It had been a great weekend of work up to that point with very responsive audiences both friday and saturday night, but sunday night's crowd made me earn every penny. They were really a strange crowd to play to!

In addition, while my car was unattended, one of them removed my "George Bush is a war criminal" sticker from the back of my vehicle.

It's not like I expected to be asked to join them for dinner, but usually that gesture is made. This night it wasn't. So I put in an order for a small pizza to go from "Coop's", and then packed my gear.

Now, whether it was my state of mind from audience response, or the lack of courtesy shown, or my being focused on picking up supper, or (heaven forbid!) my age, I drove all the way back here to the office, opened the back of the car to get my guitar -- and IT WAS NOT THERE.

I made a hurried call and first they said it wasn't there, which of course got me to sweating bullets. I told the operator to go look again and exactly where I had left it.

I waited on the line for five minutes or more. She never came back.

So I called the number agin.

Oh, yes, they had found it.

so bright and early yesterday, I was in my car, wending my way back to Hayward to retrieve the guitar. It has been quite a while since I have pulled that stunt!

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Dr. Dan Wood Throws a "Mean" Christmas Party



Last night was a thoroughly enjoyable evening! Dr. Dan Wood, a very good dentist from Menomonie, Wisconsin, had me in to make pizzas and entertain his staff for the annual Christmas party this year.

What a spread!

It started with jumbo shrimp and cocktail sauce, smoked salmon of several different varieties and a host of cheese balls and God knows what else, accompanied by some Johnny Lammer selected wines.

This kept the guests busy while I was preparing the dough and ingredients for pizza. Here's how hospitable and considerate Dr. Dan is: He made certain there was plenty of cold Leinenkugel's beer on hand for the pizza cook and slipped me some of the great Alaskan shrimp aand cocktail sauce.

He and I both marveled at the Alaskan shrimp. Who knew that there is such a thing as Alaskan shrimp???

Every time I make pizza at someone's home, it is always a bit of an adventure because of the differences in stoves. the Wood's have a convection oven cppled with a regular oven, so I had some trouble regulating my heat output at first.

About half way through the process of producing 9 12 inch pizzas, I hit my stride. I don't mean to brag, but the guests really enjoyed the pizzas and ate until they could eat no more!

I always go from sinple to complex: the first pizzas were fresh tomato, fresh basil, cheese. the next was fresh mushroom, cooked down with some olive oil and sea salt and then generously blanketed with mozarella, the next was home mde Italian sausage with green pepper and onion, then pepperoni, then pepperoni and onion, then sausage, pepperoni, and jalepeno-stuffed green olive for the finale.

A good time was had by all! Merry Christmas to Dr Dan Wood and staff! And many thanks for the pportunity to be a part of it!

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My friend Tom Wieseler nd son Gabe just stopped by with a wonderful Christmas bag of goodies for Kim and me. Chocolates, macadamia nuts, sandal wood soap bars, Ghirardelli Chocolate-flavored coffees, a limoncello liqueur cake, salted corn nuts, --on and on!

He also told me of "gag" gift boxes that you can put real Christmas gifts into but because of the printing on the boxes, are totally misleading. We all had a good laugh over the box that reads:

REMOTE CONTROL SMOKE DETECTOR -- COMLETE WITH SNOOZE BUTTON.

GOTTA GO NOW --GOT A BIG GIG IN TILDEN!
___________________________________________________________________

A Wonderful Salute to Greatness From The L.A. Times



This article appeared on the Los Angeles Times Website on November 29:


NBC has "Bionic Woman." The NFL has Brett Favre, the bionic man. Guess
which one is having the better season? I don't know what you're eating,
Mr. Favre, but pass the candy dish.

You're maybe the last American hero. A postmodern DiMaggio. A Wyatt Earp.
You're about 140 years old, with the smile of an 8-year-old and a gun like
Zeus.

You do all the things the other superstars don't. You play in that city by
the bay, an obscure little place with more chipmunks than people, more
deer rifles than cell phones. Up there in northern Wisconsin, you don't
ride in limos; they just send over Santa's sleigh.

You're us, which isn't so bad -- at least if you ask us. You're not some
natty dude, a blingy gold-toothed Liberace. No three-pointed kerchief in
your suit pocket, like the male mannequins back in the Fox studio. No sir.
You wear your hair like the 18th green, short and fast. You could comb it
with a golf towel.

Yep, we appreciate your sense of style -- the plain gray T-shirts and the
faded jeans. You've got that same lovely wife you started with. Your
beard's getting a little frosty, the jowls a little puffy, but she's stuck
by you, that woman. Through your tough times. And you through hers.

Love your loyalty, love your work. The cynics claimed you were done.
"Retire, fool," they said last season. "Put a fork in Favre. His popper
has popped."

Turns out they were the fools. They forgot you were part Choctaw, part '56
Chevy. You're having your greatest season yet, playing like a legend. And
like a scrub who just appreciates the chance to suit up.

Sure, your wheels don't work like they used to. People forget that you
have the same degenerative hip disease that permanently sidelined Bo
Jackson. At 38, you can sprint with the kids for about three half-steps,
then ... look out ... cruuuuuuunch. Those first steps on a Monday morning
must really snap-crackle-pop. Talk about a working stiff. Welcome to the
club.

When you're not at work, you're at home, just like the rest of us
middle-aged saps. I'll bet she's already nagging you about all the
Christmas junk, huh? Brett, can you bring those boxes up from the
basement? Brett, how about hanging the outdoor lights on the birch tree?
That sort of stuff. Like the rest of us, you don't need a holiday to
remind you of your blessings.

Yep, you're us all right, and we couldn't be more thrilled. You don't like
to miss work under any condition. It's just the way you were raised. A guy
thing. You don't miss work. In almost 300 games, including two Super
Bowls, you haven't missed a start It is the sports stat of our time.

And we certainly don't mind your sense of craft, your safecracker's cool.
One moment, you're zinging thunderbolts across the middle. The next you're
looping 9-iron shots in the end zone. The laser bomb that beat the
Broncos? Boom! Brilliant.

You're what we all hoped to become in the backyards of our youth. You play
as if you're hanging with your pals, and the sun is setting and the moms
are calling everyone home for supper. Come on, Brett, your buddies say.
One more. One more series ...

Blanda. Nicklaus. Aaron. They all played their respective games a long
time, gave us old-timers hope. Now you're our time machine, our fountain
of goof.

Tonight you'll play the Dallas Cowboys, that little franchise down in
Texas that has always given the Packers fits. How great is that, a
Cowboys-Packers game that really matters? Lombardi will be watching from
his skybox, barking out commands, wondering where the hell Hornung is.

Also cheering will be millions of gimpy guys a little past their prime for
whom you've become this year's most compelling sports story. An
inspiration. A Perseus in cleats.

So, come on, Brett. One more. One more series ..

_______________________________________________________________

Isn't it good to know that there is enough goodness in America to recognize true greatness, even if it is emanating out of a hick state like Wisconsin? This was from the LOS ANGELES press!!!

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Friday, December 14, 2007

Favre's Sports Illustrated Cover, Article, Sell Out

The demand in Wisconsin for last week's edition of Sports Illustrated, which named Brett Favre as its Sportsman of the Year, apparently was sky high.

Karen Dmochowsky, an SI spokesman, said the edition sold out so quickly in Wisconsin that the magazine's publishers ordered up an additional 50,000 more copies. Those additional magazines will go on sale throughout the state on Friday.

Sports Illustrated's circulation nationwide is 3.2 million, and the magazine is printed in six plants around the country, including Quad/Graphics here in Wisconsin.

Dmochowsky said that it was somewhat unusual to order an extra press run. The last time the magazine did it was in 2001, when Dale Earnhardt died.

(an aside from yours truly)

This is absolutely the truth! I bought one copy the first day the issue came out. I decided that same evening, after reading the article, that I wanted a second copy. I went back to secure one and they were already out! Guess I better check again today on my way out of town.

Finding Country Addresses in the Dark -- and Cursing Convection Ovens


Later this afternoon I am off to Menomonie to be a part of Dr. Danny Wood's staff Christmas party being held at his home off the Red Cedar River, not too far from Irvington.

Dr. wood is a great fan of mine, having hired me to play at his office anniversary party a few years back, an occasion at which he presented me with a hand made "TJ Edwards" measuring device and fish cleaning board, complete with a clamp to hold the fish's tail.

I was much taken that he would go to such lengths! (There's a very bad pun in here somewhere, but let's not get a hernia in search of).

Since winter is upon us and the days are so short, I will be searching for the party by a fire number after dark -- always a challenge. These are the times that I am thankful for cell phone technology. Knowing me, I will be within 500 yards of my goal and like a tourist lost in a snow storm, I will just keep circling and circling while the panic grows.

He called yesterday to inform me that the house is equipped with a convection oven. they are great inventions and make your baking come out very evenly browned, but they also present as problem.

In the back of the oven is the convection "blister", containing the circulation fan and making it impossible for me to get my 16 inch backing stones fully inserted into the oven. Oh, you can get the stone in, but then you can't close the door all the way.

I had encountered one before and limped through the evening by keeping one hip against the oven door, FORCING it to be almost closed.

Fortunately, Dr. Wood informs me that he has two 12 inch stones of his own that I can use. Unfortunately, this means rolling out a dozen 12 inch pizzas instead of six 16 inch pizzas. But: ADAPT, ADOPT, DIVERSIFY. That's my motto.

Maybe I will take my camera along and get some photos of the guests (and the pizzas). Sadly, over the years I have made so many pizzas for my own consumption, that I no longer enjoy my pizzas. When I crave pizza, I go to Sammy's, which I never tire of -- Kim thinks I am goofy.

My friend Tom Johnson (aka "Blinky") came up with a delightful combination pizza: Italian sausage and jalepeno stuffed green olive! That is what is pictured on today's blog.

____________________________________________________________________

Did some reading yesterday in the St Lous newspapers sports page. Mark Bulger, who has been out with a concussion for the past two weeks, may be well enough to start sunday against the Pack. the St Louis rags seem to think this will give the Rams a much needed boost.

If he plays, it will give the Packer secondary a decent test. We will see how Atari holds up. Personally, as you know, I am a Rouse fan!

P.S.

Remember how I was talking about "political correctness" the other day? The latest groaner, as far as I'm concerned, was when the owner of the Atlanta Falcons was asked if he would consider having Michael Vick back after his jail term and the owner said something like: "It depends upon if he stays in condition. If he eats a lot of fried chicken and fries ..."

OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOH! He said "fried chicken"! Unblievable!!

Here's my politically incorrect observation for the day: Afro-Americans (is that pc enough?) must have their own baby naming book. Atari Bigby. Atari? His mom must have played a lot of "pong" as a girl growing up in Jamaica.

Not funny, Larry, you Mick. You drunken Irish bastard.
_________________________________________________________________________________

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Coach McCarthy, Joe Namath, REDRUM -- A Mixed Bag

My thanks to mplspckr for pointing out that I got the Packer coach's name wrong the other day when I wrote it as "Murphy". I went back in and corected it this morning. and I don't consider that nitpicking. As a former english teacher who prided himself on getting all of his students' names spelled and pronounced correctly, I am glad that it was pointed out to me. We all know how peeving it is when someone gets our name wrong!

The first signs of winter depression are creeping into my life as I am finding it difficult to get out of bed the last couple of days. There is a lot of truth in the belief that a lack of sunshine, shorter days, longer nights, and cold, cold, temperatures can tend to bring down one's psyche.

Then there is the depresssion that many of us feel during the Holidays.

But now that I am up and have a good fire started in the wood stove here at the office, I am feeling a bit of a surge.

I have been reading a biography about Joe Namath the last month or so, catch as catch can. It is bringing back memories of his playing days and how I really didn't care much for him at the time as he was one of the first big time "hot-doggers" in professional sports.

You do have to give him his props, however. He took a terrible beating for years and in essence was the Jets franchise.

I am sort of stream-of-conscience writing today. Late last night I watched "The Shining". I had forgotten how really frightening that piece is!

I remember getting up and scrawling the name of the kid who played Nicholson's son on a piece of paper with the intention of googling him today and seeing if he had a continued career as an actor in motion pictures. His name is Danny Lloyd.

So, I did google Danny and here is just one of the entries:

Danny from The Shining went to Eastern Illinois University.
And we're talking the good version of the Shining.

Forget Joan Allen or John Malkovich and quite possibly Burl Ives. Danny Lloyd may be the coolest actor to ever to walk Eastern's campus.

He also may be one of the most secretive. From what we’ve been able to gather, Danny Lloyd walked the campus in the mid- to late 1990s, getting both bachelor's and master's degrees in the sciences. He has taught throughout Central Illinois, including area colleges.

But Lloyd made his mark in life in 1980, when he played Danny Torrence, the ESP-powered child in the Stanley Kubrick version of Stephen King's The Shining. The film was made legendary in part because of a couple of famous lines from Danny, such as "Danny's not here Mrs. Torrence" and the unforgettable "REDRUM!"

Some critics consider the movie the scariest ever made. And Lloyd’s presence on campus confirms that EIU has a tradition of turning out actors that play total nutball characters.

It is amazing that a guy who had such a popular film role was able to keep it quiet while he was at EIU. But from what we can tell, Danny Lloyd kept his life as an actor secret during his college and adult years. There's barely any information on Lloyd on the Internet.

And really you can't blame him. Could you imagine going through college with every drunk you run into screaming "REDRUM! REDRUM!" at you?

It feels good to be a Panther after learning Danny is one of us. Maybe Eastern doesn't realize it, but having Danny from the Shining as an alum sends EIU's cool stock skyrocketing.

Maybe Eastern should recreate the Overlook Hotel maze somewhere on campus as a tribute to Lloyd.

And from another source:

Sightings (submitted by you, the fans):

Redrum Is a Sensitive Topic
"[Danny Lloyd is] a wonderful instructor, and has a great love of teaching -- although we dare not ask him about his Shining experience. He doesn't like to talk about it." (Posted: January 2007)
Some Things Just Can't Be Discussed over Amoebas
"I see Danny Lloyd a couple of times every week -- he is my biology instructor right outside of Louisville, Kentucky. Really nice and smart guy! Has never mentioned anything about himself being a former child star though." (Posted: January 2006)

So my questions are answered.

Now -- a great trivia question: What do Danny Lloyd and Tony Romo have in common?

________________________________________________________

Just in case you are in the mood to do a little Holiday baking:

Tequila Christmas cake

Ingredients:

1 cup of water
1 tsp baking soda
1 cup of sugar
1 tsp salt
1 cup of brown sugar
Lemon juice
4 large eggs
Nuts
4 cups cake flour
1 bottle tequila
2 cups of dried fruit

Sample the tequila to check quality. Take a large bowl, check the tequila
again. To be sure it is of the highest quality, pour one level cup and
drink. Repeat. Turn on the electric mixer. Beat one cup of butter in a
large fluffy bowl. Add one teaspoon of sugar. Beat again. At this point, drink 1 cup tequila, just in
case. Turn off the mixerer thingy. Break 2 leggs and add to the bowl and
chuck in the cup of dried fruit.

Pick the fruit up off floor. Mix on the turner. If the fried
druit gets stuck in the beaterers just pry it loose with a drewscriver.
Sample the equita to check for tonsisticity. Next, sift two cups of salt
Or something. Check the tequila. Now shift the lemon juice and strain your
nuts. Add one table. Add a spoon of sugar, or somefink. Whatever you can
find. Greash the oven. Turn the cake tin 360 degrees and try not to fall through
the window. Finish the tequila and wipe counter with the cat.

CHERRY MISTMAS!

_________________________________________________


WINTER

a poem by Abigail Elizabeth McIntyre


" SHIT, It's Cold ! "

The End

__________________________________________________

Judging Others

An elephant asked a camel ,
"Why are your breasts on your back?"


"Well," says the camel,
"I think that's a strange question
from somebody whose penis is on his face.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Ryan Grant Claims Number One Running Spot -- Luck of the Draw

Color me as embarrassed as the Raider coaching staff. I guess I still can't believe we have a bona fide half back in Ryan Grant but he certainly proved it this past Sunday with 156 yards on the ground.

I sat back on the couch, mouth agape, watching him rip off yardage early in the first quarter. Obviously the Raiders thought that they were going to see the earlier season version of the Packers with a multitude of receivers.

Have to hand it to Mike McCarthy. Every week he shows us something new! As I said earlier, what an exciting seson this has been -- and it is a continuing story the end of which i can hardly wait to hve revealed.

Who will we be facing first in the playoffs? In a way, I hope it is Seattle -- just because I dislike Mike "The Fat Poobah" Holmgren so much and would love to see the Packers beat him yet again.

_________________________________________________________________

Here is a heart warming little Christmas story I just received by e mail this morning:

It was the day after Christmas at a church in San Francisco. The pastor
of the church was looking over the crèche when he noticed that the baby
Jesus was missing from among the figures. He hurried outside and saw a
little boy with a red wagon, and in the wagon was the figure of the
little infant Jesus.

So he walked up to the boy and said, "Well, where did you get your passenger, my fine friend?"

The little boy replied, "I got Him at church."

"And why did you take Him?"

The boy explained, "Well, about a week before Christmas I prayed to the
little Lord Jesus and I told Him if He would bring me a red wagon for
Christmas I would give Him a ride around the block in it."

An Early MERRY CHRISTMAS, EVERYONE!

Monday, December 10, 2007

Pack Wins North Division With Solid Showing -- that's Step Number One


I thoroughly enjoyed yesterday's drubbing of the fearsome Oakland Raiders, putting a stop to their three game winning streak and I especially enjoyed the defense putting a stop on the Fat Man with the Big Mouth, Warren the Sapp, who, except for one really good tackle on a run play, did very little to get his number called all afternoon nor did he even come close to sacking his old nemisis,and a real gridiron hero, Brett Favre.

According to the Green Bay defensive players, towards the end of the game Sapp was predicting accurately what the next play would be as the Packer lined up for the snap -- not that it did them much good.

Most satisfying to me was the play of special teams. They tackled kick off receivers before they reached mid field -- a far cry from the Dallas game. And it is really good to have Blackmon back as his star really shined with a 57 yard punt return for a touchdown and a fumble recovery in the end zone for 6 more points.

Is it just me, or does it seem to you that Brett always plays better after he's been hurt? He had a hell of a game yesterday!

Don't count this team out of the running for the big trophy just yet. What an exciting season!

__________________________________________________________

My trials and tribulations with Directv continue! The repair guy who was here last Saturday (Tony) gave this "I'd rather do it right the first time and have a happy customer" speech, assured me that he would be back today to affix support arms to the dish that were supposed to have been installed originally, and re-align the dish so that I would get reception of all the channels I have been paying for and not getting. So, he did not show up at all.

so I am back on the phone, chasing 1-800 numbers all day until I finally talk to a real person who tells me that the work order for today was cancelled!

Now they are coming out again on Wednesday. I lost it on the phone and I am certain the guy I talked to has a bleeding ear drum right now.

Here is a copy of y dealings with Directv today:

Dear Mr. Heagle,

Thanks for writing about your DIRECTV system. It's always nice to hear from one of our valued customers and I want you to know that we truly appreciate your business.

I'm sorry to hear about the problems you have had with your service call. I just wanted to let you know that we received your email and I have forwarded it to a specialist who will research your email and follow up with you within the next 24 hours. For immediate assistance, please call us at 1-800-531-5000.

Thanks again for writing, we appreciate your patience and understanding.

Sincerely,

Jerome G.
Employee ID 100205818
DIRECTV Customer Service

Make the most of DIRECTV by registering your account on directv.com. You'll learn about exclusive online promotions, new features of DIRECTV and the latest programs and packages. Visit www.directv.com/register today.
Customer (Entered by Jerome G) 12/10/2007 02:38 PM
Customer 12/10/2007 01:55 PM
DIRECTV FEEDBACK MESSAGE

Name: Lawrence Heagle
Status:

[Phone Number: 715-834-8815]
Email Address: lheagle@larryheagle.com
[Topic Selected: Suggestions]

Details: Last Saturday, pursuant to earlier correspondence with you, both thru e mail and letter, Premiere sent a repair rep named Tony out to my house.Tony, thankfully, replaced the faulty receiver that had originally been installed by another of your authorized Directv dealers, Roger Wood of Woods Electronics, Eau Claire, WI.At that time Tony apprised me of the fact that when Woods Electronics installed the dish, they had done so without the support arms and Tony said that this was, therefore, a faulty
installation because without the support arms, the dish, because of high winds, could wander off alignment.I had Tony call Mr. Wood at that time and so inform him then I spoke with Mr. Wood himself. He informed me that at the time he installed the dish June that Directv did not provide support arms.I have since been informed by an agent of Directv that this is not true -- so I was lied to by Roger Wood.Tony also pointed out by going through my programming onscreen, that many of the channels are not coming
in because the dish is not properly aligned.He then called in and told his boss of the situation as I was very upset and they agreed that Tony would come back today Monday, December 10, aligh the dish and install the support arms at no charge.Tony gave his little speech about how when he installs, he installs it right the first time as he would much rather have a happy customer who greets him on the street than someone who, like me, is obviously very upset.So today I waited for Tony to arrive. I waited
until noon and then I began to try to reach Premiere and for the first hour or so got nothing but busy signals.When I finally reached an agent, he looked up my account and told me that there had been no work order set up for today -- or ever.So I went through everything that I have stated here and the agent told me that Directv would send out a technician on Wednesday to get things taken care of beteen noon and 4PM.He also assured me that I would not be charged for the trip.I certainly hope not because I
have done nothing but continue to have faith in this company only to be continually disappointed.Also I refuse to call Roger Wood for any kind of technical assistance henceforth - and I would like an explanation from Premiere as to why they did not follow through today.



I was thinking about how a status symbol of today is those cell phones that everyone has clipped onto their belt or purse. I can't afford one. So, I'm wearing my garage door opener.

You know, I spent a fortune on deodorant before I realized that people didn't like me anyway.

I was thinking that women should put pictures of missing husbands on beer cans!

I was thinking about old age and decided that old age is 'when you still have something on the ball, but you are just too tired to bounce it.'

I thought about making a fitness movie, for folks my age, and call it "Pumping Rust."

I have gotten that dreaded furniture disease. That's when your chest is falling into your drawers!

I know, when people see a cat's litter box, they always say, "Oh, have you got a cat?" Just once I want to say, "No, it's for company!"

Employment application blanks always ask 'who is to be notified in case of an emergency.' I think you should write , "A Good Doctor!"

Why do they put pictures of criminals up in the Post Office? What are we supposed to do... write to these men? Why don't they just put their pictures on the postage stamps so the mailmen could look for them while they deliver the mail? Or better yet, arrest them while they are taking their pictures!

I was thinking about how people seem to read the Bible a whole lot more as they get older. Then, it dawned on me, they were cramming for their finals.
As for me, I'm just hoping God grades on the curve.

__________________________________________________________________________

Saturday, December 8, 2007

The Madness of Political Correctness Left Unchecked

I just finished reading the story on Brett Favre in the December 10th issue of Sports Illustrated. If you are a Packer fan, do yourself a distinct favor and pick up a copy. Brett has truly grown into a complete man, worthy of the title "hero". He is just the best!
________________________________________________________________________



No sooner had I written my views on political correctness when I received the following from my good friend Matthew Capell who is presently residing near Naples, Italy:



-


FROM: Pauline Lewis, Human Resources Director



TO: All Employees

DATE: 4th November

RE: Christmas Party



I'm happy to inform you that the company Christmas Party will take place on

December 24th, starting at noon in the private function room at the Grill

House. There will be a cash bar and plenty of drinks! We'll have a small

band playing traditional carols...please feel free to sing along. And don't

be surprised if the Managing Director shows up dressed as Santa Claus! A

Christmas tree will be lit at 1.00p.m. Exchange of gifts among employees

can be done at that time; however, no gift should be over $10.00 to make

the giving of gifts easy for everyone's pockets. This gathering is only for

employees! The Managing Director will make a special announcement at the

Party. Merry Christmas to you and your Family.

Pauline

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

FROM: Pauline Lewis, Human Resources Director

TO: All Employees

DATE: 5th November

RE: Holiday Party



In no way was yesterday's memo intended to exclude our Jewish employees. We

recognize that hanukah is an important holiday, which often coincides with

Christmas, though unfortunately not this year. However, from now on we're

calling it our 'Holiday Party'.. The same policy applies to any other

employees who are not Christians. There will be no Christmas tree or

Christmas carols sung. We will have other types of music for your

enjoyment. Happy now? Happy Holidays to you and your family,







Pauline.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

FROM; Pauline Lewis, Human Resources Director

TO: All Employees

DATE: 6th November

RE: Holiday Party



Regarding the note I received from a member of Alcoholics Anonymous

requesting a non-drinking table...you didn't sign your name. I'm happy to

accommodate this request, but if I put a sign on a table that reads, "AA

Only", you wouldn't be anonymous anymore!!!! How am I supposed to handle

this? Somebody?



Forget about the gift exchange, no gift exchange allowed now since the

Union Officials feel that $10.00 is too much money and Management believe

$10.00 is a little cheap. NO GIFT EXCHANGE WILL BE ALLOWED.







Pauline.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

FROM: Pauline Lewis, Human Resources Director

TO: All Employees

DATE: 7th November

RE: Holiday Party



What a diverse group we are! I had no idea that December 20th begins the

Muslim holy month of Ramadan, which forbids eating and drinking during

daylight hours. There goes the party! Seriously, we can appreciate how a

luncheon at this time of year does not accommodate our Muslim employees'

beliefs, perhaps the Grill House can hold off on serving your meal until

the end of the party - or else package everything up for you to take home

in a little foil doggy bag. Will that work?



Meanwhile, I've arranged for members of Weight Watchers to sit farthest

from the dessert buffet and pregnant women will get the table closest to

the toilets, Gays are allowed to sit with each other, Lesbians do not have

to sit with gay men, each will have their own table. Yes, there will be

flower arrangements for the gay men's table, too. To the person asking

permission to cross dress - no cross dressing allowed.







We will have booster seats for short people. Low fat food will be available

for those on a diet. We cannot control the salt used in the food. We

suggest those people with high blood pressure taste the food first. There

will be fresh fruits as dessert for Diabetics, the restaurant cannot supply

"No Sugar" desserts. Sorry!







Did I miss anything?!?!?!?!?!







Pauline.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

FROM: Pauline Lewis, Human Resources Director

TO: All F****** Employees

DATE: 8 November

RE: The ******** Holiday Party.



Vegetarian pricks I've had it with you people!!! We're going to keep this

party at the Grill House whether you like it or not, so you can sit quietly

at the table furthest from the "grill of death", as you so quaintly put it.

You'll get your f****** salad bar, including organic tomatoes, but you know

tomatoes have feeling, too. They scream when you slice them. I've heard

them scream. I'm hearing them scream right NOW!! Hope you all have a rotten

holiday * drink, drive, and die!



The Bitch from HELL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~



FROM: John Bishop - Acting Human Resources Director

DATE: 9th November

RE: Pauline Lewis and Holiday Party









I'm sure I speak for all of us in wishing Pauline Lewis a speedy recovery,

and I'll continue to forward your cards to her.

In the meantime, Management has decided to cancel our Holiday Party and

instead, give everyone the afternoon of 24th December off with full pay.


_____________________________________________________________

I attempted to do some grocery shopping this (saturday) afternoon. The parking lot was jammed, but I though I spotted an open parking place not to far from the front doors. I start to make my turn into the space only to find a sign that says: "Reserved For Mother with Small Child". so I cruise around awhile and finally find another one -- only this one has a sign that says: "Reserved for Employee of the Month".

Now I am getting a little peeved. I mean, it used to be that they had reserved parking for the handicapped and I accepted that, but what the hell??

I end up parking at the far end of the lot. Hell, I can use the exercise, I rationalize.

Now I go into the store and start the battles all over again. I fight my way past the shoppers pushing their little darlings around in shopping carts that are behemoths designed to look like train engines and automobiles. Try getting around one of those in a regulation size grocery aisle!

Not to mention the miniature shopping carts with the flags on them that say "Grocery Shopper in Training". Well, ain't that just cuter than shit! Get the hell out of my way you little critter of dubious parentage!

We've lost all sense! Suffer the little children to come on to me, Jesus said.

Well, git ready, Lord, cuz I'm 'bout to run over some and send 'em yer way!

I remember how the old saying went: "Children should be seen, not heard." Well, when I'm King, the new saying will be: "Children shan't be seen nor heard, but left at home!"

How old are you , kid? Five? Wanna live to be six?

How come we have to pass a test to drive but nobody has to pass a test to breed?

Friday, December 7, 2007

Imus Is Back -- I, For One --Am Glad!


Just reading through the online Packer news and wondering why defensive coach Kurt Shottenhemer insists that Atari Bigby is the strongest choice to start at the defensive half back position. I tend to agree with the Milwaukee Journal's tom Silverstein who says:
There are comfort, experience and tackling considerations to make, but in determining whether Green Bay Packers rookie safety Aaron Rouse deserves to be a starter, the numbers don't lie.
Nick Collins and Atari Bigby: 21 starts, one interception, 10 passes defended.

Rouse: Three starts, two interceptions, four passes defended.

If his numbers were projected over 12 games, Rouse would lead the team in interceptions and passes defended. Even he is left wondering how much better he would be if he were allowed to continue as a starter.

"If I can get two picks in three games, what do you think?" Rouse said Thursday.

The third-round pick from Virginia Tech won't get to find out how much more he could have accomplished, because with the return of Collins from a knee injury suffered Nov. 4 against Kansas City, Rouse is out of the starting lineup.

Instead of replacing either Collins or Bigby with the 6-foot-4, 223-pound Rouse, the coaches are sticking with the status quo. Even coming off a loss to the Dallas Cowboys in which both safeties - and the entire secondary, for that matter - played poorly.

Looking back on the Dallas game, it seems eveery time the Cowboys made a passing yardage gain of significance, Atari was the one who blew coverage.

Oh, well --- what the hell do I know?

_________________________________________________________________

I am very glad to see that Don Imus has been re-instated with the media and is back on the air. Granted, his "nappy-headed ho's" comment was both in poor taste and not really funny, but I am tired of political correctness.

I would imagine that this is partly because I am a comedian and I am fed up with the righteous coming up to me after the show to tell me how tasteless something I said was. Like I give a shit.

My wife and I argue about this as over the years she got interested in "Native American" studies. We shouldn't be calling teams "Indians" or "Warriors" (that's not even necessarily an Indian term) -- or the Raiders -- again --who says they are Indians? It shouldn't be The Washington Redskins or The Atlanta Braves" and on and on.

I am Irish. do I get my undies in a bundle because Notre Dame is "The Fighting Irish"? Doesn't bother me in the least.

Everybody needs to loosen up a little bit!

________________________________________________

Thursday, December 6, 2007

It's The Most Wonderful Time of the Year



I am so embarrassed! A couple of days ago I announced that Brett Favre would be on the cover of the upcoming issue of Sports Illustrated, due on newstands on December 10. So then what did I do? I went out looking for it on local newstands not one day, but two! Then badmouthed Eau Claire before I realized when I got back from the magazine section at Wally Mart this morning at 5:30 AM that the tenth of December isn't until next Monday!

Doh!

Somebody take me out and shoot me and put me out of my misery!

(Just kidding -- there are those who would jump at the chance!)

Henceforth I wish to be known as "the guy with too much time on his hands". that's what my beligerent TV intaller referred to me as the other day on the phone after receiving a copy of my "scathing" letter that I had sent to Directv.

I guess it probably is true. What, after all did I accomplish today?

well, I made some hot beefs for supper tonight, took a football into a sign maker and had him letter it with the following:

"Packers 23 Vikings 16"
"9/30/07"
"New TD Pass Record"
"422"

Dropped my Brett Favre home jersey off at the seamstress to have the Lambeau Field 50th Year Patch that I received by mail from the Packer Pro Shop sewn on the left shoulder (for luck).

Bought a 8 1/2 x 11 inch frame for my cover off the latest Packer Report and mounted the great shot of Brett from that magazine in the frame when I got back here to the office.

I have been thinking since I did that -- I should have gotten another just like it for the Sports Illustrated cover that comes out NEXT MONDAY.

My marketeer, Liz Fischer, stopped out this afternoon with my copy of "Just Read The Darn Thing", a compilation of writings by women of the Chippewa Valley.

She also informed me that my New Year's Eve gig at "The Space" has been cancelled. Management had planned on serving up this fancy-schmancy 10 course gourmet meal -- followed by me for dessert -- but not enough people signed up befoe the deadline.

I am trying not to take it personally.

I don't like to work on New Year's Eve, anyway!

So there!

Oops! Knocking at my door! It's Steve, the mail man -- delivering packages. I have been prowling the internet again! I will take time to open these and see what Santa brought me. You see, Kim and I long ago gave up on buying each other gifts at Christmas -- simply because we both hate fighting our way through traffic and crowds. Bah, humbug! so I am Santa to me and she is Mrs Claus to herself! Anyway -- time out -- I will open boxes and see what's up -- If it's worth displaying, I will put up photos.

Oh my God! It's Elvis and Jim Brown! No -- not James Brown, the Godfather of Soul. Jim Brown -- in my estimation, the greatest running back ever to play in the NFL. (Well, not really -- just "likenesses" of both -- figurines, if you will.

What are the odds of those two greats showing up at the same time at my door of a snowy late afternoon? This is the "1968 Comback Special" Elvis. Man, I remember that show! He performed in the round with all his original band buddies and he was clad in that skin tight (very hot -- both literally and figuratively) black leather outfit. There is a place of honor for him here in the office in the Elvis Presley Memorial bath room.

Remind me to do a whole blog on the Elvis bath room, complete with pictures. Gotta have an Elvis bath room. That's where the King died, you know, -- straining at stool.

And Jim Brown. Well, his is the only collectable figure you will find in my office that isn't wearing a Packer uniform. If Elvis was the epitome of "hot", Jim Brown was the epitome of "cool".

Remember how he would drag half the opposing line with him while he finished a run? Then he would get up real slowly -- you'd swear he was out of gas -- and he would do it again -- for four quarters he would pound defenses like that!

Besides, outside of the Packer uniforms, the Cleveland Browns get my vote as the coolest uniforms in the NFL -- brown, man! And orange helmets with no decals whatsoever.

Cool!

_________________________________________________________

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

See That White Stuff? It's Called Snow -- You Had Best Remember How To Drive In It

Every winter I get a large charge out of native Wisconsin drivers who can't seem to understand how to drive in snow until they've flipped their four wheel drive wonders into the median. Last time I drove to the People's Republic of Minnesota it hadn't snowed yet and we counted deer carcasses. We came up with 26 before Hudson.

This time, after that first blast of winter, it was car - casses that had replaced the deer. Get a grip! If the right lane of Highway 94 is showing pavement because the flow of traffic has blown it clean, stay in that lane! See that left lane that's all snowy? That's for two kinds of drivers: idiots and those in Peterbilts.

Let them have it. And then enjoy the spectacle. Just try not to be in their vicinity too long while they are in the process of "making up time" because they may just dipsy doodle right into you.

Semis are uniquely a pain in the ass because they fly by and kick up a mini-white out that leaves you snow blind for about 5 seconds that feels like 5 minutes, causing you to grip the steering wheel so hard that it takes a crow bar to get your fingers loose when you arrive at your destination.

The worst driving in snow story I have? My younger brother Anson, having some time off, said he would help me drive to Deadwood, South Dakota, to play a Casino Christmas party.

We did very well, despite the fact that it was snowing, until we reached the Missouri River basin at Chamberlain. We went down the hill, crossed the river, and came up the hill. When we reached level ground, the world ahead of me disappeared.

It is an incredible phenomenon that a guy like me, from hill country, does not experience. I literally could not see my wind shield wipers! Creeping along at two miles an hour, I had Anson roll down the pasenger side window to see if he could ascertain the side of the road. Occasionally he would say "I can't see anything."

We crept along for what seemed like hours, knowing full well that there is always an immediate exit when you cross a river. Frightening thoughts crossed my mind. Did I already miss the exit? Am I going to have to drive, consequently, another 20 miles in this? Am I going so slow that I am going to be rear-ended by a semi? If I stop here, will we die?

Suddenly an excited shout of joy from Anson! "THERE'S THE EXIT SIGN!" and then "I SEE TAIL LIGHTS!"

I crept up close to the vehicle ahead to maintain visual contact. I got close enough to see the words: "Stay back 100 feet". it was a snow plow! And I don't think so Mr. Snowplow! I am hugging yer ass!

He turned left so I turned left. He went back onto the freeway entrance going east. So did I. we finally got down the hill, across the river and checked into a motel.

Found out later that snowplows had to blast through underpasses that were totally plugged with snow.

I didn't make it to Deadwood.

Driving back to Wisconsin after the roads had been cleared, I recalled working a gig at the Holiday of Moorhead, Minnesota, over Thanksgving. Not making a lot of money, I was not going to spend the big bucks on the Holiday Inn Thanksgiving Buffet, but rather, walk some 200 yards out the back door to a mom-and-pop'ish truck stop cafe for my turkey and mashed potatoes and gravy.

A blizzard kicked in that day about 6 in the morning. I stepped out the back door and had my first experience with "white out". The truck stop had vanished.

I ate at the Holiday Inn.

I also remember my mother telling of her days as a girl on the plains near Buelah, North Dakota, when the only way you could find your way back to the barn was by keeping hold of the fence line. That's scary shit!

Oops! S'cuse me a minute whilst I go move my car out of the office parking lot. Our snow plow man is here.

We have now spent $100 on snow removal in less than a week.

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I went into Eau Claire looking for my copy of the latest issue of Sports Illustrated that was supposed to be on the shelves today. But, of course, "We don't have it, but we can get it for you".

I did find a copy of "Packer Report" that has a "suitable for framing" shot of Brett on the cover. I hadn't seen this mag in quite a while. Obviously. Ray Nitschke was instrumental in first publishing it and it came out in newprint quality paper. Now it is like Newsweek --all shiney stock paper.

Geat cover! Headline: SIMPLY THE BEST - Brett Favre Is Better Than All The Rest.

Amen.

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Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Brett Favre Chosen Sportsman of the Year - Poster Boy For Middle Age


Tomorrow's issue of Sports Illustrated is going to be a "must-have" for Brett favre adulators such as myself as he has been chosen Sportsman of the Year. This afternoon I will have to get out and hunt down a green and yellow frame because it sure is gonna look sweet up there at the shrine of Green Bay in my office.

Personally, I think old man Favre should also be getting the Most Valuable Player of the Year Award and I understand that there's a good chance that second year coach Mike Murphy will be chosen coach of the year.

All well and good, but we all know that the award that both Favre and Murphy want most is the one with Vince Lombardi's name on it, and although last Thursday's game dimmed their chances somewhat, we all know that hope and desire is burning hot in both their hearts!

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I have a Packer fan who lives in Minneapolis (handle: mplspckr) who reads my blog and occasionally drops me a comment.

first of all, my condolences to you, my friend, for being a Packer fan in Hell.

I can't imagine the shit that you have to deal with on a daily basis over there just becauses of the football team you cheer for -- but then again, wait -- yes, I can imagine how much shit you are handed -- because I have, in the past, attended games at the Meto-windbag and I won't do that anymore!

Viking fans are boors and most of them have no idea what the true meaning of "fan" is. I think my favorite football joke of all time is: "Why don't Viking players jump into the stands like Green Bay Packer players do?" "They are afraid they would break their ribs on the empty seats."

Point of fact: The Vikings players have taken to jumping into the stands upon scoring and last Sunday I heard the TV announcer say" "And he does the Metrodome leap!" I cringed. These guys are so brain dead they can't come up with something of their own?

At any rate, a sincere thank you to mplspckr for tipping me off to a newspaper article in a Dallas newspaper after last week's game, which I feel a need to reprint (without permission) here:

A win's a win, but Packers put on better performance
By Randy Galloway
Star-Telegram Staff Writer
IRVING -- How easy was this going to be? So easy, at one point in the second quarter Thursday night, Tony Romo had thrown three touchdown passes while taking a mere eight snaps.

And once the Cowboys' lead had climbed to 17 points, where was Brett Favre?

The ancient one had both feet planted on the Packers' sideline, his right elbow and left shoulder damaged, his evening over real early. Actually, it appeared to be a mercy injury.

Favre was helpless against furious Cowboys pressure, although in a bit of irony, the exit blow on his elbow was delivered by the smallest player on the field, backup cornerback Nate Jones, who had blitzed from the corner.

So, game over, right?

Not exactly. And even once it was over, and the Cowboys had survived what was eventually a 37-27 decision, this wasn't exactly the kind of performance that stamped the Wade Phillips gang as the class of the NFC, a conference with minimal class.

Home field in January is possibly the biggest advantage the Cowboys gained Thursday. Otherwise, hold off on those hotel reservations for Arizona in early February.

Even at 11-1, the Cowboys separated themselves from the 10-2 Packers only in the standings, not on the Texas Stadium turf in this showdown of NFC leaders.

Frankly, the Packers were overall more impressive, considering they lost Favre early, and didn't have two of their best defensive players suited up. The decision was made an hour before kickoff that cornerback Charles Woodson and defensive end Kabeer Gbaja-Biamila, both injured last week, would be a no-go.

Then, early in the second quarter, it appeared the Packers were going to be run out of Irving. The Cowboys were scoring at will.

To suddenly regroup and rally on both sides of the ball, particularly behind backup quarterback Aaron Rodgers on offense, says something about both Green Bay and the Cowboys. And for the Cowboys, it was a worrisome message.

Plus, there were 10 somewhat tainted points for the Cowboys, including a field goal on the first possession of the game, and a much-needed breathing-room touchdown with just under eight minutes left in the game.

To start with, Green Bay cornerback Al Harris made a clean steal of an Eldorado Owens catch on Romo's first throw of the evening. One official signaled Green Bay had the ball. But in a strange ruling, the final zebra decision was that Owens' forward progress had stopped. No way.

And then with the Cowboys holding only a 27-24 lead in the fourth quarter, Romo went deep for Miles Austin. His feet became tangled with cornerback Tramon Williams'. The pass fell incomplete, and there was no flag. At least, not yet.

In a decision that could have gone either way (incidental contact or interference), a yellow hankie finally dropped. Again, it was a strange delay. But the call set up the Cowboys at the 5-yard line. Romo threw his fourth TD pass of the night on a third-down toss to Patrick Crayton, who ran a good post route to beat Harris in coverage.

The Green Bay story will be the Cowboys received 10 "gift" points. It's hard to debate that version.

The good news for the locals?

Coach Phillips now has 10 days to address his 3-4 failures and examine exactly how Rodgers tore this defense apart.

Against Favre, there was an awesome display of pressure, forcing two picks that resulted in 14 points. Give the unheralded Stephen Bowen, and the equally unheralded Jones, credit for the hits that caused those interceptions.

Rodgers, however, was more elusive and presented different problems. Despite heavy pressure at times, this was Rodgers' best moment for the Packers, as he still waits for the retirement of Favre.

For the Cheese-headed lovers of Mr. Favre, and there was a large contingent on hand Thursday night, they've got to admit The Man's departure, and the entrance of Rodgers, was a very positive development in this game.

Offensively, the Cowboys also went into a troubling lull after the early schooling of what appeared to be an outmanned Packers defense.

It seemed in the first half that Eldorado Owens was headed for 200 yards-plus on the receiving end of Romo's arm, but that same Eldo, despite an outstanding game, ended up with the season's ugliest muffed pass.

Early in the fourth quarter, with the Cowboys' lead down to three points, Eldo showed his iron claws can surface at any time. A perfect TD throw by Romo went clang, bounced in the air, and Harris picked it off in the end zone.

Only a huge sack of Rodgers by DeMarcus Ware stemmed the next threat by the Packers, and that was followed by Romo finally figuring out he needed to get Jason Witten involved. Tony did, and the offense started to move again.

Back to that bottom line:

Cowboys win. It's the only thing that matters.

But the W didn't come without assorted worries and warts.

And the truth rides with Green Bay, despite the final score. Under the circumstances, the Packers were more impressive. Come January, and the playoffs, that will be something to consider.

Randy Galloway's Galloway & Co. can be heard weekdays 3-6 p.m. on ESPN/103.3 FM.

rgalloway@star-telegram.com
Randy Galloway, 817-390-7760
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mplspckr: Thanks for the tip!!!

Monday, December 3, 2007

Monday -- Impulsive Shopping Day -- Bought Useless Trinkets


Here it is Monday again and what do I have to show for it? Some major purchases at Spencers at the mall. Got myself a refrigerator magnet that says "paddle faster, I hear banjos."

Amazing how much the movie Deliverance touched the nation's collective psyche. I really should rent that sucker and watch it again.

I know when I am gigging and tell my audience that I had difficulty finding the location and mention the fact that I got really lost -- all I have to do is play that opening riff from "Dueling Banjos" on my guitar and it gets an immediate response. Dee da ling ding, ling ding, ding, dang, ding --


If, somehow you have been absent from the planet for thirty years, go out and rent the DVD. It's a great flick and it'll scare the bejesus out of you. It'll be a long time before you get into a canoe and take a prolonged canoe trip wihout wearing a sidearm.

I was just checking today's blog in "preview mode". The flash bouncing off the refrigerator really looks like the sun, eh?

I also popped, inexplainably, for a Homer Simpson dashboard figure that talks with your automobile's movement, saying things like: "Why is it the slowest guy on the road is always in front of me?" followed by "Why is the fastest guy on the road always right behind me?" and others such as: "Quit waving at me! I'll come through the intersection when I'm good and ready -- officer." And "You child may be an honor student, but you are a MORON!" all in Homer's original voice.

Sucker punched in Spencers.

I already have the feeling that this thing will drive me crazy in less than 30 miles. Seemed like a good idea at the time.

What I really went in there for was to see if they carried any of the McFarlane NFL figures that I think are very well rendered.
They had none. What they did have were monsters and freaks and Superheros. Back by the edible panty section.

Oh, hi! Aren't you Larry Heagle?

I suppose I shall attempt to stay awake for tonight's Monday night game between the Billichek Bastards and Ray Lewis, if for no other reason that I get it in high def -- contingent on my directv signal -- who knows, maybe we'll all get lucky and watch Ry Lewis do something besides "spaz out" while he is beng introduced before the game. You'd swear the guy just orgasmed in his cup.

Will somebody please maim Randy Moss? This is the first year twinkle toes has had the nerve to cut it back across the middle after years of running out patterns where he would catch the ball and then daintily step out of bounds to avoid any contact whatsoever.

If I was thirty years younger, I would love to strap on a Ravens helmet and go out there and hit him so hard he wouldn't remember where he was until next Monday.


I think maybe I don't like the guy. He and soul brother, Terrell Owens. Now there is a pair!

Sunday, December 2, 2007

Whatever Happened To Sportsmanship In NFL? Not In Minnesota Or New England


An NFL Sunday Observation: The Vikings are beating the snot out of the Lions. I don't remember what the score was at this point, but they had the game out of reach and are setting up for a suppposed field goal. the snap goes to the holder who pitches it to the crossing tight end, who scores a touchdown and rubs it in.

So what's up? Baldy Childress is now doing his best impersonation of Bellichek? Run up the score. Bullshit call! Somday I hope the Lions shove that down your throat or right up your ying yang!

And here is my photo of our illustrious defensive back, Atari Bigby. He is the "scape-gopher" (beaver?) for the week!

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A coupla blogs back I vented about my problems with Directv. I guess they finally got the message from my ranting and raving. I got a call tonight (Sunday) around 8PM from a Directv rep who was very apologetic and said that he was assigning a local troublshooter (Premiere) to come out this coming Saturday between noon and 4PM to run some tests and replace the receiver if necessary.

The old saw about the squeaky wheel getting the grease is obviously true. But I am still skeptical. I will report further later on.

Here's the kicker: Directv will not have me charged for this first trip (out of kindness, I suppose), but subsequent trips will be SEVENTY DOLLARS a pop! Unless of course I want to be put on their "mantenance/insurance" plan at $5.99 a month.

You gotta love a company that has so little faith in their product that they use fear as a motivating factor to squeeze your wallet just a little bit harder.

It reminds me of that line in the National Lampoon movie "Vacation" when Chevy Chase (Griswold) asks the garage mechanic out in the middle of nowhere how much it is going to cost to repair the family truckster and the redneck shows this toothless grin and says: "How much you got?"

First Christmas Gig, First Snowstorm Coincide


We all knew it would hit sooner or later, but the first snowstorm still caught me with my pants down. I hadn't lined up my snowplow man for the winter!

Kim needed to get down the driveway early this morning, so I did a whole lot of shoveling. I built myself a grand Sunday morning appetite. Usually I go to Perkins for their "55 Traveler" but decided since Kim was leaving, I would cook in at the office.

I'm glad I did. I prepared homemade buttermilk pancakes and "Eggs Ala Alice". Looked so good I took this picture. I have always felt that the key to great cooking is starting from scratch and staying away from ready made mixes. Here are the recipes for this morning's breakfast:

Buttermilk Pancakes (for 2)

1/2 cup bread flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp sugar

sift the above ingredients together in a small bowl

Separate one large egg, dropping the yoke into the bowl with the dry ingredients. Add 1/2 cup buttermilk (I use a bit more to thin it), one tsp melted butter. Stir the ingredients together thoroughly.

Using an electric mixer set on high, beat the egg white until it is stiff and forms peaks. Fold the egg white gently into the prepared mixture. (beating the egg white until stiff and then folding it in makes the pancakes very light and fluffy)

Bake the pancakes on a cast iron griddle with the stove set at medium high. Be sue to wipe the griddle down with a vegetable oil saturated paper towel each time before you pour the batter on the griddle.

Note: you may ask why I insist upon using a cast iron griddle. I like what cast iron does to the browning of the pancake. Look closely at the pictured cake. it is an art work.

"Eggs Ala Alice" (named in honor of my lovely mother who developed this recipe for her boys when they came in hungry from milking cows)

Eggs Ala Alice for 2

fry 4 slices bacon, turning frequently, until crisp. Chop the bacon into bits, set aside
In a bowl, break four large eggs, beat them thoroughly
ada the chopped bacon, salt and pepper and chopped fresh chives when available (otherwise freeze dried work)

cook the eggs, scrambled-style, in a small skillet. serve with the pancakes.

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Last night was my first Christmas party gig. So, of course, the snow started about 11:30 in the morning. I gave my client, All-ways Transit of Bloomer, a quick call to make certain they weren't ging into the panic mode over a snowstorm and cancelling. No sense in loading all the sound gear if I wasn't actually going anywhere.

Hats off to All-Ways Transit for having the balls to party hearty, storm or no storm!

The drive up, which ordinarily would take me about 35 minutes to transverse, took me a good hour as whoever was ahead of me pretty much set the pace. I wasn't about to go out in the snowy passing lane and end up losing the gig in the ditch. Semis however plowed right by, leaving momentary whiteouts in their wake.

I was (outside of the cooking staff) the first to arrive. By the time I got there we had a good four inches on the ground. Later their snowplow came through and I had to play tag with him while he cleared the lot.

Although I hadn't worked in quite a long while, I had spent the morning organizing a tight 45 minute set and the show ROLLED!

One of the employees, a driver with a goodly sized beer gut, was wearing an elf's hat, complete with pointy ears. I had a line all set in my mind to use on him if he "opened fire" on me during the show -- and sure enough, he blurted something out mid joke to which I replied: "This from Santa's helper, who I would judge by the size of his belly, has had more than his share of "hamburger helper".

I think that exchange got the biggest response of the night. Work companions love it when you nail one of their own.

The drive home was just as hairy as the drive up but for other reasons. the temperatures were on the rise and hovering right around freezing. It began raining, snowing, and sleeting all at the same time -- my very favorite combination -- and my wind shield wipers started looking like popsicles; at the same time becoming less and less effective. I finally had to pull off at the Tilden exit and crunch the accumulated icing off by hand.

Every time I drive that stretch of road and see the Highway Q exit to Tilden I have to laugh. A hundred years ago I had a band that played at The Lamplite bar in lovely downtown Bloomer.

One night there was an extremely lively group of women, out dancing with one another as they do in Wisconsin, and I asked one of them where she was from. She said: "We're from Tilden." I said: "Tilden? Where is Tilden?"

She replied: "you don't know where Tilden is? You just come on Q!"

I said: " Lady, if I could come on Q do you think I would be working in a band?"

She didn't get it.

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Saturday, December 1, 2007

Don't Do DirecTV -- I'm Mad As Hell and I ain't Gonna Take It Anymore

It's a little after noon and snowing a really fine, grainy, first snowfall outside. I take full responsibility for the impending storm as I have a gig in Bloomer with the Allways Trucking company Christmas party.

I have to leave momentarily to meet the Kimster for lunch at Mancino's, so I won't get much done on this until I get back.
I am going on a rant about Directv so that others may know exactly how the customer gets treated these days and to let you know that you may want to consider Dish TV as an alternative.

I had Directv installed in late summer, early autumn -- I'm not about to look it up -- and the damn receiver hasn't been working correctly from day one.

Being a newcomer to digital HDTV however, I wasn't certain if I was being paranoid or if possibly I was doing something wrong. At any rate, the digital picture would suddenly dissolve into crumbling pixels, then disappear for an instant, then reappear.

Other times, I would be watching and the picture would just disappear entirely. I read through the manuals and it said to push the reset bitton, so I did. After several minutes of reloading (and losing track of the plot of the movie I had been attempting to watch at the time) the picture would come back. So much for that movie. Blockbuster would have been cheaper -- I am paying $61.39 (middle tier -- no pemiium movie channels, but NFL Network) a month and getting screwed in return. That's a lotta rentals!

True story: I had a bunch of the guys over for the Packer/Dallas game. Made it throough the whole game without signal problems but then during the Favre interview after the game, boom! I lose my picture nd by the time I'm re-booted, it's too late to know to what extent Brett is injured!

Another true story: If the signal had gone out during the game? I'd been in the car driving to Directv headquarters in Colorado with a frickin' high powered rifle and a pipe bomb, just in case I got there while they were closed!

So over time, after asking others who have Directv, I found out that they never have trouble with their picture doing what mine does, so this week I called my installer, after keeping diligent records of mishaps for a week. He came out and announced that if I had to keep resetting, even when the weather was clear, then I had a faulty receiver.

--gotta go to lunch --

I'm back from skating near the mall with idiots who every year forget how to drive during the first snowfall. No harm, no foul.

Where was I? Oh, yeh -- "even when the weather is clear". did you know that during storms or excessive cloud cover you can lose your damn satellite signal entirely? They don't tell you that when they are installing -- oddly enough.

My next step in the ongoing Directv saga was to attempt to contact Directv by telephone and being told that I would be on hold most of the day so I should go the web site, which I did, and typed in the following message to the tech:


Name: Lawrence Heagle
Status:
[Account Number: ]
[Phone Number: 715-834-8815]
Email Address: lheagle@larryheagle.com
[Topic Selected: Equipment]

Details: I have had recurrng problems with my receiver since its installation, including disintegration of picture, total loss of picture, loss of sound. I just spoke with Roger Wood my installer. He recommends that the receiver be replaced but since it has been more than 90 days since installation he said it is necessay to contact you directly.Each time I have encountered the above problems, pushing the reset button gives me a temporary fix, but as I say, it keeps happening.Please send me a new receiver.
Roger leads me to understand that once I get a replacement I ship the faulty receiver to you.This has been most frustrating and disappointing and I know you will want to help me.

To that, I got this reply:

Dear Mr. Heagle,

Thanks for writing. I'm sorry to hear about the technical problem you are experiencing with your receiver. However, we are limited to what we can troubleshoot by e-mail, but we want to ensure your system is up and running again as quickly as possible. Our Technical Support agents are trained to walk you through a number of troubleshooting steps which are too difficult to try to talk through over email. Please call our technical support center at 1-800-531-5000 and select the option for technical assistance. Also, you may find some helpful information at the DIRECTV Technical Help forums. Just visit http://forums.directv.com/pe/index.jsp to find answers to your questions.

By the way, I see that you have a H-20 HD receiver. As you may know already to make sure that you continue to receive all of our HD programming - including new HD programming we’re launching later this year - you will need to make sure that a B-band converter is connected to each Satellite-In port on your DIRECTV H20 receiver. The B Band Converter came in the carton with your receiver and if you had professional installation, it is most likely already connected.

For instructions on how to check for B Band Converter connection or to order one, go to directv.com/bbc.

We appreciate your patience and hope we're able to fix the problem quickly.

Thanks again for writing and stay tuned to directv.com for the latest news and updates about our services.

Sincerely,

Danilo M.

To which I replied:

Dan:

Obviously you did not read my first e mail thoroughly so I am sending it again. Please note that in capital letters I have highlighted what you obviously overlooked: MY INSTALLER, AN AUTHORIZED DIRECTV DEALER, TOLD ME TO REQUEST A NEW RECEIVER AS THE ONE I HAVE IS FAULTY.

I sent this e mail along with some comments that I was not about to call technical support for two reasons: 1. My installer has verified that I need a new receiver and 2. Because of that, I am not about to spend my day "on hold" trying to reach tech support and "Danilo" --what the hell kind of name is "Danilo" -- obviously outsourcing at its best -- this person is not from Dubuque -- basically telling them the same thing and further telling them that if the new receiver isn't sent before my next billing period, I m no longer paying my bill, thank you very much.

I also went on a diatribe about how companies have a responsibility to take care of their customers and if not, I would do everything in my power to make certain anyone I know who asks how I like Directv will be told that Directv doesn't really give a shit about service (although I don't think I used the shit word).

I also included copies of the letter sent to Directv to my installer and to the billing department of Directv, highlighting in yellow the part about no longer paying my bill.

So, if you are reading this, think twice about installing Directv. Check out Dish TV first.

Do you get the feeling I am just a bit pissed??

I will let you know how this develops!


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