Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Nothing to See

More free advertising
I'd love to tell you all about the Vent Haven Museum, the one and only true shrine of ventriloquism, but it would be a little lacking because of the place's strict policy forbidding the distribution of photographs. And, really, the visuals are critical. I have a bunch of alarming shots that I can show to myself, but you, my friend, are SOL—unless you go there yourself, which, really, I think you should.

So instead let's do a nonexhaustive recap of our tour of the Midwest last month, with a goodly number of legit pictures, just (barely) in advance of our trans-Appalachian epic.

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Mr. Happy Go Lucky

Free advertising for an album that's old enough to drink

As John Mellencamp sings on Track 5 of the 1996 album shown above, "This may not be the end of the world... but you can see it from here." Rolling Stone described Mr. Happy Go Lucky as "long on atmospherics, a dark-carnival collage of mad laughter and distant whispers." If that's not something for a blogger to aspire to, I don't know what is. They also called it "a little uneven but unrepentant," while No Depression called Mellencamp "wonderfully mixed up, unclear about who he is and why he does the things he does," all of which seems fitting, too. 

If everything goes more or less as planned, 2017 could well be the antepenultimate one of Baseball Byways. That is, by the end of the 2019 season, Rob and I might be able to say that we have been to all the active MLB and MILB stadiums. (Characterizing that moment in time as being "done" raises a slew of terminological questions that might get addressed at a later date.)

We start this year, fittingly, in Indiana, home state of this post's bard. Herewith the belated but ambitious season preview for 2017:

Monday, January 23, 2017

Dippin' Don'ts



Excuse me, maestro, at this point I have to interrupt... While this is hardly a political or news-driven blog, I feel obliged to weigh in on today's kerfuffle over Dippin' Dots, ballpark institution and onetime Ice Cream of the Future.

It transpires that new White House Press Secretary Julius Streicher Sean Spicer has had it in for the quasi-scientific quasi-dairy product for some years, calling it, among other terribly clever monikers, "The Ice Cream of the Past." This clash could have been avoided altogether had Spicer (or, indeed, anyone) heeded our observation from nearly three years ago—namely, that Dippin' Dots is no longer from the future not because it's antiquated but because we now live in the future.

Which anyone who has seen Idiocracy could have already told you.





Sunday, January 22, 2017

Bots are Reading the Blog


...but it appears they can only read the first page. I have temporarily changed a setting so only one post is displayed on each page. Melvin and I apologize for any inconvenience to human readers. (Yes, both of you.)

Update: January 24, 2017
That didn't work so I have reset the posts-per-page setting again.

Thursday, January 5, 2017

Out of Phoenix Rises the Ashes

Melvin and I have been planning and undertaking baseball road-trips for 15 years (origin story). For about half that time, it was (just) something we did because we enjoyed it.

The endlessly repeated end of the video for One in a Million (1983).

Then, starting with our 2009 cross-country trip—4,800 miles and 16 games in 20 days—we decided to blog about our experience. Going into the exercise, we agreed that we could stop at the end of the trip. We didn't.

Friday, December 23, 2016

Post-Postseason

Pointing the way to Phoenix for some pilots is a doubly-literal landmark written in one-hundred-foot tall letters in the hills above the Rio Salado Sportsman's Club, about 20 miles east of Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport.

Air photo courtesy of Google Earth

Pointing Melvin and me to Phoenix was the unrequited feeling that we hadn't seen enough baseball this year. (He probably also felt obligated to check on my mental health.) With the 2016 minor and major league seasons completed, we flew to the Valley of the Sun to see the Arizona Fall League.

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

In Search of the Lost Pun

Yesterday, BUSH'S® Beans and Minor League Baseball® announced "a multi-year, strategic partnership, making [BUSH'S] the 'Official Beans of Minor League Baseball,' and a 'Preferred Partner' of a number of MiLB teams, beginning in 2017."


"The new partnership will activate across a range of touch-points, including in-ballpark celebrations such as during National Baked Bean Month in July and the integration of a variety of BUSH'S Beans products in teams' concessions," according to the press release.

I don't know what a touch-point is but that's nice. I tend to buy the BUSH'S brand myself, and not just in July. But didn't somebody miss an obvious pun?

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Election Notes from All Over

As the Associated Press began declaring which presidential candidate had won each state, as the wind began to shift and then blow harder, as I started worrying that Trump might actually win the election, my inbox began to blow up.

Monday, October 24, 2016

Where's Norton?

Melvin and I are mostly a pair but other folks tour with us from time to time. I welcome the company of any one of them again in the future. That said, not every itinerary suits every companion.

We arrived at a destination halfway through our abbreviated trip to Pennsylvania that made me think of a friend who has traveled with us twice. I turned to Melvin and asked, "Where's Norton?"

Where's Norton? At Exit 12, in ¾ of a mile.

Sunday, October 2, 2016

White Sands (italicized and not)

For our birthdays, Watson gave both Melvin and me copies of White Sands; Experiences from the Outside World, the most recent collection of essays by Geoff Dyer.

front jacket image
photograph by Theo Anderson

It was an informed choice (public thank you) since Melvin and I have both read a good deal of Dyer's writing and we have visited about half of the places featured in the nine essays in his new book.