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For What It's Worth: Phones, Eight is Enough, Smoke & Robin Williams

By Bruce Haertl, bhaertl@kwch.com
Published On: Aug 13 2014 05:47:42 AM CDT
Updated On: Aug 13 2014 05:47:52 AM CDT
Bruce Haertl: For What It's Worth...
WICHITA, Kan. -

Indulge me for a moment while I sound like an aging relic desperately out of touch with today’s ways.

Think about it---is there anything that’s done in the normal course of a young person’s life that their phone is precluded from? All of us love our smart phones, but whatever Generation of X we’re on these days never seem to put them down. Never mind that they’re a constant interruption in their lives, they’ll gladly drop anything that they’re doing, or anyone they’re with for a ping, ring or buzz of their phone. It’s little wonder that so many people these days have the attention span of a fruit fly. It’s amazing to me that we live in an era when communication has been made so easy that we remain so bad at it. But, I digress.

Ends at eight---

The only pitcher to beat the Royals since the trade deadline is Oakland’s Jon Lester and he’s done it twice. The end of their eight game win streak last night was tempered by Detroit’s loss in Pittsburgh, they’re fourth straight. After the Tigers get done in Pittsburgh against the playoff motivated Pirates they get three with the equally inspired Mariners, all this with a pitching staff, perceived to be a strength, that’s suddenly very shaky.

It’s, essentially, a dead heat right now—the Tigers have a better lineup and their starting pitching, when healthy, is slightly better than Kansas City’s. But the Royals bullpen blows them away and I’d give the edge in intangibles, right now, to KC. The Royals aren’t grinding like the Tigers, they’re having fun coming to the ballpark and that gives a team a huge boost in the middle of August when the length of the season is taking its toll on others.

Say what?

At a press conference after practice on Monday, West Virginia coach Dana Holgorsen admitted that you lie in recruiting. He even used those words—not ‘mislead’, or ‘omit’, or ‘twist’, or ‘untruth’—but ‘lie’. I’m not sure what he was trying to prove with the admission, but I can’t imagine mom and dad taking too kindly to being told that they’re being lied to in the recruiting process. Some might applaud Holgorsen for being forthcoming and admitting what no one else will, but I think it’s stupid and stupidity may be why the Mountaineers have been such a non-factor since their move to the Big 12.

Tragic—but criminal?

I’ve only seen the video you probably have and while I’m not ready to say that Tony Stewart may have been trying to make a point to young Kevin Ward Jr., I don’t see anything criminal in what he did behind the wheel last weekend in upstate New York. I do think it’s interesting that Stewart has never said that he didn’t see Ward on the track, as another driver who nearly hit him moments before Stewart did. I understand tempers flaring, but, short of life and death, you simply can’t get out of your car on a live race track.

Early poll---

The Sporting News has the first pre-season hoop poll out—KU is at #6 while the Shockers round out the top 10. Considering the very worthy argument that they have one of the best backcourts in the country, I’ll be surprised if Wichita State isn’t top 10 in every poll.

Goodnight sweet prince---

In many ways Robin Williams was the face of comedy for my generation. I wasn’t a huge Mork and Mindy guy, but it didn’t take long for him to burst into my consciousness. Williams was the stable of late night talk shows, with his free-style ramblings that you never knew where they going to go—only that you’d laugh at where it ended up.

It’s so sad that someone who spent most of their life making others laugh—didn’t have enough humor in his life to overcome the depression which surely claimed him. May he rest in peace.

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