Quote for the Day

” . . . . .”

Sen. Rafael “Lyin’ Ted” Cruz (TP-Texas).

And that is the sound of the six seconds of awkward silence from Cruz when he was asked at his second debate with Congressman Beto O’Rourke, “Tell us something you’ve done in the last year that has nothing to do with politics that would give Texans insight to who you are as a person.”

Cruz had no real answer after the prolonged silence because there is no possible insight into who Lyin’ Ted is as a normal human being.   He is entirely a political creature consumed by narcissism and completely dedicated to the greater advancement of all things Ted Cruz.  Nothing else matters to him but his quest to become President.

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Quote for the Day

“I will be doing a major rally for Senator Ted Cruz in October. I’m picking the biggest stadium in Texas.”

Donald Trump (aka Trumph – the Insult Comic President™).

It turns out, the rally on October 22, will be at NRG Arena an aging tiny dump of a venue that seats about 8000 and has exactly four events on its schedule between now and the end of March other than hosting exciting events like mule pulling during the Houston Rodeo and Livestock Show.   Trump aides claim that they could not get NRG Stadium (75,000+) or Toyota Center (19,000) for the event scheduled for the first day of early voting.  But what was so special about that date?  And in fact, there are at least a half dozen larger venues in the state (ATT Stadium in Arlington, Anerican Airlines Center in Dallas, Minute Maid Park in Houston, the Alamodome and AT&T Center in San Antonio,  Fort Worth Convention Center).

Red’s NFL Picks 2018 – Week 7

As they round the far turn, Red was 2-4 for the week, 10 lengths off the pace, and now in a 12-18 hole for the season.  This week 6-0 for sure!  Red never says “die”  – an expression which has never made much sense to him anyway.

Notes from last week: 

At the end of the Chiefs-Patriots game, the Chiefs players were walking off the field looking like – “Yep, we can play with these guys!” The Pats were looking like “Thank god we survived that onslaught!”   Red originally predicted a Stealer/Chiefs AFC Championship game – but it is looking more and more like the Pats will be there.

The Cowboys offense just had their one good game of the season.  Meanwhile, the Jaguars have to be wondering what happened to their defense after getting smoked two weeks in a row.

The Texans were lucky to survive yet again and would be leading the AFC South but for an inexplicable loss to the sad sack Giants.

Your Game of the Week Game of the Week – Bears over Patriots.  Given the massive turnover in rosters within 2-3 years for your average NFL team, Red puts no stock in ancient football history.  But even so the Bears have not beaten the Patriots in forever.  Actually, the Bears did win in 2000 in the pre-Brady era (it seems so long ago now) but since whipping the Pats in Superb Owl XX, the Bears are 1-7 against the Pats.  And despite misgivings, Red simply thinks the Bears are due.  They certainly are smarting after getting beat by the Dolphins and much-maligned QB Brock Osweiler.  The venom on Houston Sports Talk Radio regarding said BO two seasons later is still somewhat disconcerting – after all the guy did steer the team to one of your glorious franchise’s three ever playoff wins.  But Red digresses.  Despite last week, the Bears have a good defense and look for Khalil Mack and gang to be putting serious pressure on the timeless wonder.  The Bears score just enough points to win a close one.  Chicago 20 New England 17.

Your National TV Game of the Week – Chiefs over Bengals.  This could be the GOTWGOTW but Red is a little tired of hyping the Andy Reid Hour starring Patrick Mahomes and featuring Kareem Hunt, Tyreek Hill and Travis Kelce.  It’s the hit series of the Fall so far.  And the Chiefs get another Sunday night slot to show the NFL exactly how explosive this offense really is.  Bengals are still the big surprise of the season so far – notwithstanding the inexplicable breakdown against the Stealers last week.  No breakdowns needed this week.  Mahomes is back on again because if he isn’t throwing four TDs a game it’s an off week.  Red Rifle and crew make a valiant effort to keep up against a Chiefs defense that has yet to learn the valuable art of tackling.  Kansas City 45 Cincinnati 39.

Your Texas Game of the Week – Jaguars over Texans.  Texans have done yeomanlike work in getting back to 3-3 after a pathetic start.  But yeomanlike probably doesn’t get it against a Jaguars defense that is either confused and lost or angry and looking to get even.  Red is betting on the latter this week and woe be to Deshaun Watson if Red is right.  He will not last the season at the rate Bill O’ Clown is using up his nine lives.  If Red were running the show, he would write this one off and sacrifice Brandon Weeden to the lions (or their close cousins) this week.  The Texans have seven winnable games on the schedule after this one before closing with tough matchups against the Eagles and Jags again.  That could put you at 9-7 which might win the division or 10-6 which almost certainly will.  Think about it Billy.  The Texans might even be able to win with Weeden if Blake Bortles is not having one of his five weeks of the season where he actually resembles a real NFL quarterback.  Red just hopes that Watson makes it through in one piece.  Jacksonville 24 Houston 16.

Your Disappointing Game of the Week – Ravens over Saints.  The irresistible force meets the unmovable object here.  That’s a problem Red could never solve and does not make for exciting football.  Ravens defense wins the day. It’s close but not exciting.  Baltimore 17 New Orleans 16.

Your Time Zone Hex Game of the Week – Chargers over Titans.  Some think that the Chargers have the nads to compete with the Chiefs and win the AFC West.  Some still believe in Santa Claus.  Don’t get Red wrong, the Chargers are good – especially for a team with no home field advantage and 37 fans on a good Sunday.  It’s just kind of sad that great careers like those of Phillip Rivers and LaDanian Tomlinson went to the Chargers to die.  But this week the possibility of glory is still alive because just right now the Titans are pathetic.  Marcus M. was sacked 11 times last week – Yep, 11 times!  All this while completing a mere 10 passes.  So while the Chargers really don’t need a triple time zone reverse hillbilly factor hex this week over a sadly inept Titans’ offense, it sure won’t hurt.  This will be a good old fashioned butt-whipping.  Los Angeles 42 Tennessee 10.

This Week’s Shit Bowl –    There is a plethora of choices this week’s excruciating excrement exhibition.  Just to let you in on a little of the Inside Baseball that goes on here at ParadiseinHell.net, the Shit Bowl is typically awarded to the teams with the most combined losses – unless of course there is a team of historic ineptitude (typically in past years the Browns) playing a team with a decent record.  So if the 0-15 Browns are playing a 10-5 Ravens team, the 20 losses might not qualify the game for the Shit Bowl if there are two “going-nowhere in a hurry” 6-9 teams butting heads.  This early in the season that is not usually a problem.  But this week we have three matchups between teams with a combined 9 losses.  Bills/Colts, Broncos/Cardinals and Giants/Falcons.  A veritable brown feast of ineptitude.  So just for you Red is calling all three.  Bills should have won last week and do so this week against a horrible Colts outfit.  Broncos are bad but good enough to beat a team so bad that even Sam Bradford can’t hold down a job.  And while the Falcons seemed to have joined the Flat Earth Society and fallen off the edge, they should be able to beat a Giants franchise clinging to its last shreds of dignity.  But please, please put away all the painkillers before you sit down to watch this parade of football futility lest ye be tempted to put an end to it all before halftime.  Bills 24 Colts 19. Broncos 9 Cardinals 6 and Falcons 42 Giants 21. 

The Amarillo Sod Poodles?

Little dogs on the prairie - Defenders of Wildlife Blog

This year it was announced that the long-time San Antonio Missions (currently a AA affiliate of the San Diego Padres) would be packing up and heading north to Amarillo.  As the existing team mascot seemed inappropriate for a city with no Missions, the club set out on a mission to find a new mascot.  There were five finalists – the Bronc Busters (boring), the Boot Scooters (lame), the Long Haulers (better but with possible porn overtones),  the Jerky (who names a team after a food item and this one probably has more porn overtones than the Long Haulers) and the Sod Poodles (???).

Well, what pray tell is a Sod Poodle?  Red was a bit embarrassed to learn that it as old name for the five species of stout, short-legged, short-tailed terrestrial squirrels commonly known as prairie dogs and represented in Texas by Cynomys ludovicianus.  The name prairie dog derives from the barks or yipping calls of the  diurnal rodents who congregate in large underground colonies across the short grass plains of North America.

Well, you might be able to guess which name Red gets behind.  While Red has no love lost for squirrels in general, prairie dogs have somehow never gotten on his bad side and they are fun to watch.  And the Sod Poodles would be in line with such other imaginative minor league mascots as the Lug Nuts, Sand Gnats, River Bandits, Iron Pigs, Mud Hens, Chihuahuas,  Flying Squirrels, Yard Goats, Jumbo Shrimp, Muck Dogs and Hose Jockeys (Okay, Red made that last one up).

And Root, Root, Root for the Sod Poodles would actually kind of make sense.

File it under “It’s About Time” – Catholic Church to disclose names of all clergy accused of child abuse

In 2019, the 15 Catholic dioceses in Texas have promised that they will release the names of priests who have been “credibly accused” of sexual abuse of a minor from 1950 on. The move was announced by Bishop Edward Burns of the Catholic Diocese of Dallas.   The Church indicated that the bishops from the 15 Texas dioceses decided on September 30 to release the lists of names by January 31, 2019 as part of their effort “to protect children from sexual abuse.”  One might argue that the priestly cows already left the barn while the Church was holding open the barn doors and even directing them to the next pasture where they could graze on unsuspecting Catholic youth.   Still, Red encourages any move in a positive direction towards further exposure of this horrific scandal that has eaten away at the very soul of the Church.  Priests need to know that there is now nowhere to hide and that as Dostoyevsky put it “the path to redemption leads through confession.”  But this confession needs to be in the public square not hidden in the confessional.   It will not heal the wounded, but it needs to be done.

Goodbye El Paso – We hardly knew ye.

El Paso attorney Steve Fischer is arguing for a break from the Lone Star State.  Fischer thinks that El Paso gets no respect and that it would be better off seceding and hooking up with the Land of Enchantment (aka New Mexico).  El Paso is separated from the rest of Texas by a time zone and a lot of empty space and most Texans have never been there unless they were passing through on the way to California.  And as Fischer points out, there has never been a state-wide official elected from the capable ranks of El Pasoans.  Fischer also complains (rightfully) that El Paso is the step-child when it comes to higher education with only one 4 year university (UTEP) that has never been pushed for Tier One status and never asked to play ball with the other Texas schools.  El Paso is also the largest city in the country without a law school (views could differ on the benefits there – but who knew?).

The rest of the state doesn’t seem to understand us. Maybe it’s time to break up. Texas Republicans should be happy to get rid of El Paso because we are an overwhelmingly Democratic city. Democrats may prefer to keep us, but what did they do for us when they were in power?

Our marriage to Texas has gotten old. New Mexico is younger and more attractive. We would not be ignored, especially because we would be their largest city. Grant us a divorce and we won’t even request the back support. If there are any El Pasoans who think we need a wall to protect us, take ‘em. You can have custody and everyone will be better off.

Maybe Mr. Fischer has a point.

Red’s NFL Picks 2018 – Week 6

Red was 4-2 last week bringing his season total to a still pathetic 10-14.  This week for sure!

Your Game of the Week Game of the Week – Chiefs over Patriots.  Well it’s showdown time for early season dominance of  the AFC and a a possibly preview of the AFC Championship game.  The Pats looked like a dying dynasty a couple of weeks ago but have resurged to silence the doubters.  Meanwhile in KC, there have been few doubters.  Andy Reid with an arsenal of offensive weapons has always been a recipe for regular-season success (and playoff failure).  This is still the regular season and the Pats have shown a tendency to give up way too many points for their ball-control offense to counteract.  And they have yet to beat an actuall quality opponent.  The Chiefs on the other hand have pretty much gob-smacked whoever is in their way.  Red doesn’t think the Pats (or any other team for that matter) can keep up when the Chiefs offense is clicking.  Mahomes gets back on track in the biggest game of the week.  At some point the GOTW GOTW won’t feature the Chiefs – but not this week. Kansas City 38 New England 28.

Your National TV Game of the Week – Eagles over Giants.  What is wrong  with the Eagles?  Whatever it is – the likely cure is a game against the Giants – which is a little unfair because the Giants looked like a professional sports team last week even in losing.   Even so, trailing the OTNAs in the standings is not likely to strike fear into the collective Eagles’ heart.  But a win here puts them in solid contention.  Because the Eagles are playing down to expectations and the Giants seem surprisingly capable of scoring points, Red figures this one will be more exciting that it should be. But this is close to a must-win game for the stumbling Eagles.  Philadelphia 35 New Jersey 28.

Your Texas Game of the Week – Jaguars over Cowboys.  The Red Rule (score 17 points and beat the Cowboys) was tailor-made for a club like the Jaguars coming off a “What the Hell just happened here?” game against the seemingly unstoppable Chiefs.  Expect the Jaguars to be out for body bags this week against a Cowboys offense that is searching for answers – in fact, they may be actually searching for questions having given up on answers.  The Jags defense was humiliated last week and after some soul-searching they reassert themselves against a Cowboys offense that can run the ball (sort of) and has a quarterback that can scramble well enough to buy time – but is otherwise utterly bereft of actual NFL talent and led by perhaps the second worst game caller in the league (an honor reserved for Bill O’ the Clown).  Thanks JJ.  Jacksonville 17 Arlington 16.

Your Disappointing Game of the Week – Bengals over Stealers.  Well the Bengals certainly were the surprise of the league at the quarter-pole even having played a relatively weak schedule to that point.  But they solidified their position as unexpected team of destiny (regular season version only) by beating the Dolphins and the return of  Joe Mixon.  The big question is can they overcome the traditional nemisis Stealers and claim solid control of the AFC – North in Week 6?  Red is buying into the fact that Mixon is a franchise caliber back to go with franchise caliber wideout A.J. Green to go with almost franchise caliber QB Red Rifle.  Every other aspect of this team is decidedly mediocre but that offensive combination may be enough to win 10 to 12 games.  Cincinnati 28 Pittsburgh 20.

Your Time Zone Hex Game of the Week – Bears over Dolphins.  The single time zone, inverse longitudinal, fresh-water/salt-water hex is easily overcome by the rather awesome Bears defense coming off a bye week against an increasingly pathetic-looking Dolphins offense.  In fact, neither of these teams have a shit-worthy offense.  When in doubt go with the best defense in a grubby low-scoring game.  This one will certainly be grubby.  Chicago 13 Miami 7.

This Week’s Shit Bowl – Seahawks over Raiders.  Just a couple of years ago this would have been an exciting west coast matchup between two teams with playoff aspirations if not expectations.  Oh, how the mighty have fallen.  The Raiders are a reality TV show joke of a football team right now and are in the process of being torn apart.  The Seahawks are not a joke, they just aren’t very good anymore. But this week, Pete the Cheat gets the best of Jabbering Jon.  Please place your tray tables and seat backs in the full upright position and fasten your seat belts so that you cannot jump up and head butt the 58 incher while watching this Cruddy Colon Clash.  Seattle 22 Oakland 10.