Friday, January 25, 2008

Influential Rino

The UK Daily Telegraph's Washington correspondents compiled a list of the 100 most influential liberals in America.

I was perusing their list of influential conservatives when out of morbid curiosity I clicked on their list of top 20 liberals. Imagine my shock when I got to number 8 on the list.

Governor of California

That's right our REPUBLICAN Governor made the top 10 list of most influential liberals in the United States. To those of us who have lived here and watched Arnold the Rino repeatedly cave to the whacko left wing nutjobs in our state legislator this is not really a surprise.

Friday, January 18, 2008

Netless Practice

Last night's volleyball practice was a novel 90 minutes for me, and I hope a learning experience for my girls.

The basketball team finished up on the court, I unlocked the cabinet with the volleyball stuff in it and told the team to get the nets set up. Then I started talking to one of the girl's parents. After about four minutes I looked over my shoulder to see how the net setup was going. My team was standing in the corner of the gym talking while the youngest member of the team stood over next to the standards waiting for someone to help her set them up.

This was a very ironic experience seeing as how the parent (who is many of the girl's basketball coach) and I were discussing the lackadaisical attitude that so many of the girls have. They still treat this club team as a social circle. They get together, they talk, they visit, and sometimes they play a little volleyball. I looked over at the parent, and we both shrugged, he smiled, told me "Good Luck" and left.

I picked up the brass covers for the standard receivers walked across the floor, putting them back into place. This got the attention of my players. But I didn't look at them. I continued across the floor, shoved the cart with the standards and nets back into the closet and locked the door.

When I turned around the team was all standing behind me with very curious looks on their faces. I just shrugged and said "If you don't want to set up the nets, we'll just practice without them. Unfortunately the only things I know to do on a volleyball court without a net involve running. You ready?"

Over the next 90 minutes we worked on speed, endurance, quickness, core strength, arm strength and eventually in order to avoid killing them we did some setting and passing drills.

Needless to say with their parents came to pick them up I turned over 9 very tired young girls to them. Several of the girls were complaining to their parents about how tired they were after practice. To a person every parent just smiled, patted them on the head, or gave them a hug and said "Good." Then told me good evening and left.

I think they got the message, and I didn't even have to yell.

On the bragging about my girls side, they were running through passing lines with me tossing balls to them. As they got warmed up and into a rhythm I stopped tossing and started hitting balls about the speed I knew that they could hit. They were doing a pretty good job of digging up these balls so I asked if they wanted to take it up a notch? Several of them hollered yes, so I started increasing the speed I was hitting at them. After two times through the line I stepped up the hits to about as hard as I could swing. I intentionally aimed off to the side of each girl so I wouldn't hurt any of them if they mishandled the ball. The first time around most of them either screamed and jumped away from the ball, or just stood there with a shocked look on their faces as the ball screamed past them.

The second time around, 7 of the 9 girls there lunged sideways into the path of those hits and tried to pass them. The only 2 who didn't try, were just too slow. They didn't react until the ball had gone past them. The third time through the line 6 of the nine managed to get their arms in front of the ball and one of them actually managed to pass it back to near the target.

About then I had to slow back down, my old shoulders don't have that many really hard swings left in them and trying to pound around 30 in a row like that was pushing it. But I was very impressed with their willingness to step in and give those shots a go. When we were done the one player who managed the one pass asked me if any of the 14 year olds they would play this year could hit like that. I told her that there probably weren't many 16 year olds that will be able to hit like that. She just beamed me a huge grin and walked away. I have a least one player that "gets it."

Second Place


The SCVA finally posted the results of our first tournament. We finished in second place. There was a three way tie for first. We finished second behind a team that we beat, but finished ahead of the team we lost to.

The SCVA uses match record for the first tie breaker, that created the three way tie. Then they go to game record. That knocked the team we lost to out of the tie, they had to play three games to beat the 0-3 team. That left us tied with the team we had beaten, but since in our loss we only scored 21 points and in their loss they scored 35. So we lost in the points ratio tie breaker.

I'll gladly take a second place finish. Considering it was my girls first competitive games as a team I'm thrilled with a second place finish.

Our second qualifier is Feb 2nd. A first or high second place finish will move us from the copper to bronze division. My goal for the season is to try and get these girls into the upper bronze division. But when all is said and done I really don't care where they finish as long as they improve throughout the season, and they have fun.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

14s Qualifier No. 1

My 14 and under club team played in their first tournament this last Saturday. Normally SCVA tournaments start at 8 AM. This would mean that we have leave here around 4 Am in order to get to the tournament site on time. But for this first tournament we were scheduled to start at 3PM. This meant that we didn't have to leave town until around 11:30. So we pulled out around 10:30 and decided to stop on the way down for lunch. Unfortunately my plans of a team lunch together evaporated once we hit the road as each driver and their occupants decided to eat somewhere different.

We got to the American Sports Center in Anaheim around 2:15 in the afternoon. Needless to say my players were impressed. The American Sports Center houses 22 volleyball courts in one large room. When my players first walked inside they just stood and stared. I'm pretty sure that none of them had ever seen anything like that before.

I gave them a brief tour of the facilities and then we got a camp spot set up outside. I went over some team rules for them while we were there. Then we moved back inside to find a spot to warm up.

Normally the tournaments put each team in a foursome that plays a round robin. For each team to play each other takes 6 matches. This format takes about six hours to get through. But since they only had about 40 teams scheduled or the afternoon session we were about to use two courts at a time. So instead of playing a match, resting, then playing again we played three back to back matches. Three hours, six games and we were through.

My players started out struggling. Our first opponent was not a really strong team, but we were not playing well at all. My players were still pretty awed by the whole experience. Since I wasn't able to get a scrimmage for them, this was our first real game together as a team.

The first game was over before it could really get started. My players were not moving, not passing and not serving. We lost 8-25. The second game seemed to get even worse. I used my timeouts, and tried talking to them during the three minute break between games. But all I could do was wait until they finally decided to settle down. Then near the end of the second game my girls finally seemed to hear what I had been telling them. It was just a volleyball court, it was the same size, shape and layout as every other court they had ever been on, and all they had to do was play the game. We scored several late points but ran out of time and lost the second game 13-25.

Match 2 and 3 were a completely different story. My players were passing better, moving better and even got in several spikes. We won the second match 25-21 and 25-14. Our third match was more of the same with two 26-16 wins.

We finished the day 2-1 in matches and 4-2 in games. I think there were two other teams that also finished 2-1 and the last team that finished 0-3. The way SCVA determines tie breakers is match results, then game results and finally the ratio of points scored over points allowed. I don't know how the other teams scores went but I suspect that our big losses in the first match are going to cost us. We will finish somewhere between first and third. But we have to wait until SCVA posts the results to know for sure.

The girls all had fun. I hope they have also started to realize that this is serious volleyball. Several of them still treat club ball like a social circle where they hang out with their friends and occasionally play a little volleyball. I started upping the intensity at our last practice. Hopefully they will respond positively.

Monday, January 14, 2008

Band Meme

OK, I've been too busy to write this week, but that doesn't mean I have been too busy to not waste time on stupid stuff like the Band Meme.

The Rules are Here!

Here is my results:

Album Cover Art

This looks like an album that you would have found at a 99 cents a pound sale in the early 80s.

The quote is
The only thing that saves us from the bureaucracy is inefficiency. An efficient bureaucracy is the greatest threat to liberty.

Eugene McCarthy Time magazine, Feb. 12, 1979

John the Presbyter is an obscure figure in early Christian tradition, who is either distinguished from, or identified with, the Apostle John.

The picture is what Hamed Saber in Tehran did with his spare time on the second day of an Ahmadinejad ordered government shutdown in Tehran.

So I randomly ended up with a snow man made by an Iranian University Professor because the government wouldn't let him go to work that day. An obscure Christian apostle who either is or isn't the Apostle John and a quote about the dangers of bureaucracy. I guess the internet isn't quite as random as we would like to think it is.

Sunday, January 06, 2008

Global Climate Change

The Director of the Space and Science Research Center, (SSRC) in Orlando, Florida, John Casey has confirmed a recent WWW announcement by solar Physicists at NASA that changes in the sun will result in a climate change from warming to a long lasting period of global cooling.

NASA's original report was published on May 10, 2006 - Long Range Solar Forecast

The SSRC report was published on January 2, 2008 - Changes in the Sun’s Surface to Bring Next Climate Change

Read both reports, they are not long, and don't contain too much technical jargon. In other words even Al Gore could understand what they are say, provided he was intellectually honest enough to actually consider a point of view other than his own.

For example:

"With this next solar minimum predicted by NASA, what I call a “solar hibernation,” the SSRC forecasts a much colder Earth just as it has transpired before for thousands of years. If NASA is the more accurate on the schedule, then we may see even warmer temperatures before the bottom falls out. If the SSRC and other scientists around the world are correct then we have only a few years to prepare before 20-30 years of lasting and possibly dangerous cold arrive.”


The Great Conveyor Belt is a massive circulating current of fire (hot plasma) within the Sun. It has two branches, north and south, each taking about 40 years to perform one complete circuit. Researchers believe the turning of the belt controls the sunspot cycle, and that's why the slowdown is important.

So what are these scientists saying? They are saying that from now till somewhere between 2010 and 2012 we should expect the earth to continue to get warmer, because solar cycle 24 will be peaking during that period. That's right kiddies, global warming is real, it's happening, and contrary to what Pope Al Gore and his church of radical environmentalism tells you, it is not about green house gases, SUVs or cow farts. It is all about the sun baby!

Then, after solar cycle number 24 starts declining sometime around 2013 and for the next 20-40 years we are in for a period of solar hibernation which is going to make things get colder around here. According to some predictions a lot colder.

Now, I live in the desert, so if you tell me the average temperature is going to drop several degrees I'm all for that. But there are large portions of this planet that are not going to find this to be good news - farmers for example. You know, the people that provide all the food you eat!

So what can we do about this? Because you know, we are important. Just ask any of Al Gore's rabid followers and they will tell you that anything that happens on this planet is all the fault of us decadent American citizens. They will tell you that the current warming trend is all our fault, so I expect that they will blame the cooling trend to come on us also. But what can we do, it is the freaking sun we are talking about here. It is big - 864,938 miles in diameter, that's 109 times larger than the earth. Which makes it's volume 1,299,400 times that of the earth. That means if you were to hollow out the sun and fill it up with copies of the planet earth you would need 1.3 million earths, or one Al Gore ego. The sun is also far away - 93 million miles away. And finally it is hot - 11,000°F.

So what is our piddling little planet with it's insignificant infestation of human beings going to do to stop the solar cycles that are heating or cooling our planet?

I know that we aren't supposed to think of ourselves as insignificant but it is true, cosmically speaking we are a dust mote to be swept away like we never existed. There is absolutely nothing we human beings can do to stop, change or alter the solar heating or cooling cycles. What we can do is our best to survive whatever our sun throws at us. But we won't be able to do that until the spittle flinging lunatics like Al Gore shut up and stop blaming us for the problem. Survival is going to be a lot harder if we first don't recognize what is causing the problem and secondly don't make our lives significantly more difficult or uncomfortable by allowing our government to pass meaningless laws trying to combat a problem that they cannot possibly prevent.

Saturday, January 05, 2008

Things To Do When Bored

JustSayHi - Science Quiz

I scored 100% and only had to guess on about 20% of the questions. However I didn't learn most of the answers in 8th grade science.

In 8th grade science I learned important things like using the lit alcohol burners to write your name in fire on the desk tops will earn you a swat with a paddle.

I also learned that accidentally (it really was an accident) lighting a stack of papers on the teacher's desk on fire will get you sent to the Principal' Office.

I learned that setting BBs in the snow on the window sill until they get really cold then tossing them down the front of the blouse of the girl behind you will get your face slapped off your head.

Finally I learned that if you get partnered up with the class hoodlum, and you help him get his only "A" of the year, later, when he and a couple of his reject buddies happen to see you getting roughed up by a couple bullies they will beat the crap out of them for you.

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

How Well Do You Know Your World


Not bad seeing as how I have only ever been to Canada and Mexico, and every state of the Union except Alaska.