Saturday, September 27, 2008

Master Debaters

Talk about Napoleon would have thought that John McCain was going to leave the debate last night on a white horse, sword at his waist and embark on a trip across the ocean to prove to the world that we really do kick ass. Quite frankly, for the last 8 years our Government has been kicking all of us right square in the nads. I respect McCain's service to this country and the sacrifices he made to defend our freedom but I'm not overly impressed by his resume of travel throughout different areas of Europe & the Middle East. He goes to these places not to try to improve our reputation in an already fragile World Community but to survey the territory, get the lay of the land, plot the next move like he was playing Battleship. McCain is consumed by war and maybe I would be too if I had been a P.O.W. but to try to build this country back up and once again make it a beacon of light for all who would try to emulate us by flexing our tired muscles is fruitless. It would be like Arnold Schwarzenegger entering Mr. Olympia again only to expose his now flabby physique but still pose as if he was the biggest man on stage. A strong defense is necessary especially in this post 9/11 world we all reside in but if all we are talking about is victory in Iraq, we miss the bigger picture because in many ways the war in Iraq has already landed in the U.S.'s loss column. Mismanagement at all levels, terrible tactics and strategies, lack of proper equipment and supplies to help protect the brave men & women who put themselves in harm's way and a President who declared victory before the 1st quarter even ended has gotten us to where we are today.....a failed Administration with failed policies. Despite his tough talk about cleaning up Washington, does anyone really believe that we will be involved in less conflicts with McCain as President. When he said last night "When you point a gun you better be ready to pull the trigger" I almost thought he was going to pull one from his waist and sling it around like Doc Holliday. McCain seems to get off on flaunting his self proclaimed expertise on all things militaristic and I think this is the only area where he truly feels like he is engaged in this entire electoral process. They should have just staged this thing at the OK Corral so McCain could get his rocks off and actually feel some movement below the waist that does not require taking a pill. I'm all for kicking ass when needed, I've supported going into certain areas around the world to kill those who would plot and carry out aggression and violence against this country but full scale war in Iraq, surge notwithstanding, has proven to be a huge financial burden as well as a rallying cry for those whose sole purpose is to proliferate more violence against us and those Nations who align themselves with us and our current foreign policies. The only time that McCain looked interested last night was when they opened up questions about Iran, Russia & Iraq. He was staring down the moderator and the audience as if they were all V.C. hiding out in the jungles of 'Nam. What about this country Sir? What are you going to do to save us from an Administration (I use that term loosely) that has concentrated so hard the past eight years on keeping us safe in other parts of the world without realizing our greatest danger is much closer than any of their Geritol bottles could have ever imagined?
Which brings me to Obama. Did he get crushed by McCain on foreign policy.....I don't think so. I think he sounded level headed when he spoke about the issues that face us from abroad. Of course Obama wouldn't have the same Foreign Policy credentials as McCain, he half his age and that's why he went out and chose Biden as his Veep candidate. What you have to ask yourself is did Obama sound credible and passionate about his own plan for dealing with foreign aggressors? I don't think Obama is a wuss, I think that if something went down that called for an immediate, direct response from our military, he would not hesitate. That does not mean though that he will seek out conflict and put more of a heavy tax burden on our already suffering middle class. This machismo sh*t that lingers in Washington and hovers over McCain is straight out of a spaghetti Western.....cue Ennio Morricone. Dudes, light some candles, soak in a nice bath and try to focus on how we are going to help our American families pay their mortgages, college tuition, rising energy bills and maybe, just maybe, have a little extra to enjoy a luxury here or there. Hell, the Europeans get it right, they work to live but we in this country have been forced into the cruel pattern of living to work which after awhile will make you disillusioned, tired and angry. Most people I know live paycheck to paycheck, just trying to stay afloat but we still have heads of failed companies such as Lehman Bros. walking away with yearly bonuses that exceed 20 million.....20 million is a lot to pay for sh*t and that's what the American people have been getting for so many years now. I really want to know what made all these CEO's qualified to run these now failed Financial Institutions in the first place. Maybe there really is a devil and maybe he really does allow you to sell him your soul. I haven't sold mine and I sure as hell don't think that Obama has sold his. I felt he spoke last night as someone who has a better handle on what the "everyman/everywoman" is really feeling out there. Yes, there are some who gravitate to the message of World Domination that McCain spews but I can only hope that the real Americans, the ones that have helped make up the tough fabric that we have tried to sew together for over 200 years, see beyond color or race and wake up to the fact that things actually can get worse, much worse, before they get better. I agree with Obama that we need to put more funding into education, develop alternative energy sources, overhaul our Health Care System and that we need to stop the tax breaks that are given to big corporations through loopholes or otherwise because the rich are staying rich but everyone else right now is getting screwed. I was actually scared when McCain said last night that he wanted to build 45 new Nuclear Power Plants. Obama supports the use of Nuclear Power to some extent but 45? To me, that's 45 disaster's waiting to happen in the backyards of people who are already getting whacked by our Government's lack of foresight on this issue. Who's gonna run these reactors, Bernake & Paulson? Do you trust McCain to help you recover your lost 401k or retirement savings, the same guy who backed Bush's policies 90% of the time? Seriously, with some prominent Republicans now turning their backs on this failed Administration how effective will McCain be when he says he wants to clean up Washington. Many will see him as the same enemy that has stood in front of the American people for the last eight years looking like a dog that deserves a treat whenever he says something remotely coherent. Despite his claim of not being the most popular man on the floor of the Senate, the Washington that McCain wants to clean up is the same one he has been polishing the rear of for so many years.....and don't even get me started on the maverick of all mavericks, Sarah Palin. She has about as much clout in Washington as an anorexic at an all you can eat buffet. We can't just get rid of the Senate, House or other important agencies of Government, blow it all up in one fell swoop. We need someone who will try to resolve the issues that face us responsibly by bringing both parties together in an attempt to get real work done for this Nation, something that let's say a "Community Organizer" might know a little something about. Obama went out of his way to agree with McCain on certain points last night and I didn't see it as a lack of conviction for his own ideals or him conceding that McCain knew all the answers. I saw it as a way for him to show that it's People who will actually help reform our suffering Nation, not Parties. If you have good ideas bring them to the table, it doesn't matter what Party you pledge your false allegiance to. The last I checked, we are still called America not the United Red States of Republicans. McCain on the other hand, in a condescending sort of way kept saying "Senator Obama doesn't understand" which I actually think helped Obama. Yes it's true, Obama doesn't understand how the undeserving rich keep getting richer, how we can continue to throw billions into an unpopular war, how we can vote for someone who has more often than not agreed with Bush's failed policies and someone who could quite possibly have the young men & women of our military holed up in the Middle East separated from their loved ones for an indefinite period of time. McCain has shown through votes of his own and the platform he outlined last night that in many ways he will be the Godfather III of really bad sequels and continue the divide that is growing daily. John, have you seen the polls, Americans don't want more war, they want and need more help!!!!! Washington doesn't just need a cleaning, it needs a good power wash so we can finally start seeing the brilliance that (hopefully) lies beneath the muck. I'm not necessarily for more Government regulation, I'm for more Government oversight (whatever happened to checks and balances) and with McCain's blurry eyes focused squarely on the "Evil Doers" of the world, the ones that still get to enjoy their rides home from work in pimped out town cars and continue to squander the savings of millions of hard working Americans get to fly under the radar of our mighty Missile Defense System. Kind of ironic that McCain announced he was suspending his campaign to return to Washington to help construct a sound plan on how to save us from our current financial crisis but at the joint Party meeting in which Obama also attended he barely uttered a word. Maybe all the "Maverick" has holstered to his waist is a cap gun and maybe when he finally shoots his load, all it will be is a blank.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Yanks for the Memories

Yankee Stadium saw it's last baseball game this past Sunday and as I watched all the pregame festivities chock full of legendary players, historic moments and classic plays I took some time to reflect upon my own personal memories of not only Yankee Stadium but of the Yankees themselves. Yes, I am a die hard Yankee fan but even more so, I am a fan of baseball. I consider myself a baseball historian of sorts and those close to me know how much I gave to the game when I played it and how much time I have spent learning and studying the history of the sport. I never feel out of place discussing the game sitting around a bar full of older men who actually saw Mantle hit one of his majestic home runs or remember watching DiMaggio patrol center field. In a time when it was considered uncool to sit down & watch a full nine innings, I'd be there, intently surveying each pitch, each managerial decision, even doing my own little personal broadcast for whoever could stand listening to my rambling.
My first real baseball memory was the 1978 World Series, Yankees vs. the Dodgers and a few of the members of that Yankee team remain some of my favorite players of all time. Ron Guidry, Graig Nettles, Goose Goosage, Reggie Jackson, Thurman Munson & Willie Randolph helped form my early love of the game & whose baseball cards I still have today even after most of my others were lost. When I actually started playing the game I begged my coaches to put me at third base even though I was a lefty just because I wanted to make plays like Nettles. I never got my wish so the pitcher's mound and first base became my home for so many years to follow. They called me "Gator" in Little League and I wore it as a badge of honor, even trying to model my motion after Guidry's although never quite being able to live up to the potential that nickname suggested. I did have some great moments on the field however and there are some who still refer to me by that name.
My first visit to Yankee Stadium was in 1984. My Aunt Lorraine was friends with Al Bumbry who was the center fielder of the Orioles at the time. The Orioles were coming off a World Series Championship in 1983, a team that consisted of future Hall of Famers such as Cal Ripken Jr. & Eddie Murray. I distinctly remember walking through the gates for the first time and capturing small glimpses of the field as we walked around the concourse to our section. When we finally made our way to our seats and I saw the Stadium in all its glory it was as if my eyes were seeing the world for the first time, all over again. The grass was the greenest green, the seats were the bluest blue, the smells of hot dogs and peanuts lingering in the air......heaven!!!!! "Beer Here" became a phrase I still imitate to this day. We got a chance to go to the field level where I was introduced to Al and he signed an autograph for me, my first real autograph. Later on in pregame warm ups, I walked around to the right field line where Al was shagging some flies and he told me to throw him my pen. He signed the ball for me on the field and threw it back up into the stands & I felt special, hell I knew this guy now....I knew a Major Leaguer!!!!! That game is now a blur, I was overwhelmed by it all, sensory overload for sure. We waited by the Orioles team bus after the game where I was able to meet Cal Ripken & Eddie Murray and I still have their autographs on the piece of paper they signed til this day. We went to the Stage Deli afterwards with Al and my lifelong journey as a baseball fanatic was well underway.
The next year my family went to Fort Lauderdale for spring training or as my sister would recall, spring break. This was back when the Yankees played there and also when Fort Lauderdale was the hot spot for spring breakers. While my sister stayed behind at the beach me & my mom went to watch a Yankees spring training game and I was hoping to get a chance to meet my new favorite player, Don Mattingly. Spring training games are more intimate than regular season games, the players come over to the stands to sign autographs and chat, you can catch them walking to their cars in the parking lot, it's just a more laid back atmosphere.....unless you're Rickey Henderson. The game was uneventful, Mattingly wasn't in the lineup and a lot of guys I had never heard of were on the field showcasing their talent or lack thereof so being the adventurous soul I was I told my mom I was going to go for a walk around the field. Somehow I made my way under the right field stands where the hitting cages were and I could see one light on at the end of the cages and I heard the crack of a bat. I made my way down the corridor and I came across none other than Donnie Baseball taking some swings in the cage. I was the only one there, my own little moment that only I can remember and in some ways it filled my tank and fueled the passion that I still have for the game. Donnie was my baseball hero and a lot of times we are let down when we actually get to meet our heroes but this wasn't the case here. Donnie let me stand & watch him hit and he signed his 1984 Topps Rookie Card for me and I told him that he was going to win the MVP Award that year.....did I mention that I'm a prophet too!!!!! After trying to explain what happened to my mom in my talk real fast without taking a breath sort of way, we headed out only to find my sister looking like John Candy in Summer Rental.....burnt to a crisp......I definitely got the better end of that deal. Later that season I once again attended a game with my Aunt and lightning struck once more. I ventured underneath a chain that blocked access to the box seats right over the Yankee Dugout and saw Mattingly coming in from the field after taking some ground balls. I had a ball & a pen with me & I called out to Donnie as he approached to dugout. He motioned for me to toss him the ball & my pen and proceeded to sign it before rolling it back to me on the top of the dugout roof. I almost felt like he remembered me from a few months back although it would be naive to really think he did. He just seemed to be one of those players that got it, the kind that would do those sort of things regularly.....make a kids day, year or lifetime.
More recently, I was able to attend one of the last games at Yankee Stadium with my mom. My fervor for all things baseball & the Yankees rubbed off on my mom and although she isn't the biggest sports fan you can rest assured she would call me after a late inning meltdown or a come from behind victory to discuss why or how it happened. We watched a lot of games together through the years, even through the lean years between 1982 & 1993. She even started picking up some of my famous lines and on a few occasions I could hear her in her room yelling at the son like mother. My girlfriend Jen was able to score some nice seats for a game against the White Sox and the first person I thought to bring was my mom. It was a great time & I think she was feeling those same emotions and smelling those same smells as I had 24 years earlier. It brought the kid out in her, yelling "There's Jeter!!!!!" as he ran some sprints on the outfield grass or commenting on how beautiful the moon looked beyond the facade of the upper deck. I'm so happy I got to experience that with her, I felt like the wily old veteran, pointing out different areas of the field, reliving my most vivid memories of the Stadium like the last out of the '96 World Series, Boomer & Conies perfect games, The Subway Series, Tino & Brosius' 9th inning Home Runs in games 4 & 5 of the 2001 Series or Aaron Boone's Pennant clinching Home Run in Game 7 against the Sox. I could go on forever about the magical moments and the iconic, beloved players that have graced that field but it's these few personal memories that will live on with me long after the ghosts cross the street & take up new residence at "The House that a player to be named later built".

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Beyond the Palin

I consider myself neither a Republican or Democrat..... who would really want to be fully associated with either party in these times. I have both liberal and conservative views, just depends on the matter at hand. The game of politics is a sad old tale told by people who wouldn't know a straight answer if it climbed over the White House fence and peed on the Rose Garden . I've always been more fascinated with the laughable back and forth we see in all types of media and how they can try to manipulate people's opinions based solely on rederic. It's a damn shame that our political system really only allows us 2 viable choices when it comes to selecting who will be the face of our nation. Writing in Baba Booey or your best friend isn't really going to change the political landscape but it sure is fun, isn't it? So we're down to the final 2, the best of the worst or to those that stood on the floor of the recent coming out parties for both the Democrats & Republicans waving signs like their at Wrestlmania, the best of the best. Which brings me to Sarah Palin. I have no problem whatsoever with a strong, intelligent, hard working woman..... I've been surrounded by them my whole life. It really is about the issues and what she stands for not to mention that if elected she would be one more melanoma on John McCain's forehead away from being the leader of this nation. It's funny how the right wing media attacked Michelle Obama, questioning her patriotism but now going after Palin's family is off-limits. Barack really disappointed me on this one, he took the high road in an otherwise low road political game. I understand he can't come off as sounding like a bully but the other night Palin compared herself to a pit bull.....let's hope she has the sack to match. During the DNC, Republican pundits kept waving the "What makes Barack Obama qualified or experienced enough to be President" flag all over Denver but those same people now see Palin, who is quite possibly the least qualified Vice Presidential candidate in recent memory, as some sort savior among the Republicans. A "reformer" they're calling her, an outsider, someone who can really bring change to Washington. Why, because she got rid of a few corrupt City Councilmen in a town that only the most hardcore of alcoholics have ever heard of.....sorry Alaska. I'm sorry but she looks like she's a few tequila shots away from turning into the girl from Van Halen's Hot For Teacher video. McCain was trying to be slick here, figuring that putting a woman on the ticket would bring some of the wayward Hillaryites over to his side, as if the only reason people voted for Hillary was because she was a woman. He also did this to try to sway the hardcore right wingers, many of whom see McCain as not "Republican" enough. Just an aside but didn't that video of Palin shooting an automatic weapon give you flashbacks of some cheesy Roger Corman flick. Palin wants to do away with abortion even when it comes to cases of rape and abuse. She wants to rid our schools of sex education, something her now pregnant 17 year old daughter Bristol may have benefited from. She wants to teach Creation alongside Evolution.....I can see it now....."Johnny, what did you learn in school today?"....."Well Mom, we learned that Democrats evolved from monkeys but Republicans were created by God and placed on this Earth to uphold our laws and protect us from evil". "Good boy Johnny, now go watch some porn on the internet because that's how your gonna learn the art of making whoopy!!!!!" Good God, some one save us from this insanity. I've never heard the term "Hockey Mom" more than I have the last week. Soccer Moms around the country are ready to revolt, chanting "Puck You Palin!!!". Bristol Palin's baby daddy proudly flaunts on his MySpace page that he's a know Jamie Lynn Spears is wetter than a slip n' slide over this guy. John McCain met Palin twice before handing her the #2 spot, pretty sound judgement, wouldn't you say? McCain's decision making process has to be questioned regardless of whether you think she is right for the job or not. I'm sorry but being the Governor of Alaska and the Mayor of Whatchamacallit before that really doesn't get me all pumped up. I'm not saying that the Obama/Biden ticket is God's gift, it has it's flaws as well but Palin's empty Passport doesn't give me too much confidence in her ability to deal with the Putin's of the world. Republicans are saying she made a rousing speech the other night, a grand introduction to the National Stage, as if they were almost surprised that she could pull it off and even more hopeful that she would. Note to the GOP.....being a good public speaker doesn't necessarily mean that you're ready for the rigors of dealing with the world's problems. In all fairness this goes for Obama as well. I say she's fair game, if you want to run with the big dogs than you better be ready for all the piss, poop and dry humping that come along with it. She sounded strong and confident in her views the other night but no one was jabbing right back. It will be interesting to see how she comes off when she (hopefully) debates Biden and even more interesting to see how the Democrats walk the fine line when going after her on the issues. I don't know what four years of Obama/Biden or McCain/Palin will bring us, how could you really ever know. Millions of people voted for Bush and I'm sure they were confident in his abilities at the time but have since found that you really can't teach an old spoiled brat who gets everything he wants any tricks at all.....unless you count disaster as a trick. Our forefathers were geniuses but they were so 18th century. I support the Second Amendment but the same rules do not apply today. Relax people, the British aren't trying to tax our tea anymore and militia's aren't pounding on your doors. These NRA folks that bow down to Palin will try to make you believe that having the right to own a weapon is the single most important issue that we face. I'm sorry, but invest in a good home security system & save your family the misery of burying a child that finds daddy's gun in the closet when nobody's home. Palin to me is the face of all that is still archaic about this country. Some would say this is a good thing, they'll say this is what we need, be more like the visionaries of the past, uphold our long standing traditions. Tell this to the kid who is texting on their cell phone, playing Grand Theft Auto while listening to their Ipod and scamming on how to get the next door neighbor into their own little Garden of Eden. We are getting further and further away from the George Washington's and Thomas Jefferson's that once filled our text books. Times have changed, like it or not, and the last thing we need right now is someone in Office who would rather hide those changes by channeling their inner Confederate than deal with them head on.....not very pit bull like, wouldn't you say?

Friday, August 29, 2008

The seX-Files

So, David Duchovny is a sex addict....really? Being addicted to sex doesn't really seem like a problem to me, I see it more as a perk of being rich and "famous". What do you do for someone who is a sex addict, give them methabone? I remember a few years back when Eric Benet, former husband of Halle Berry and a member of the 5 minute club came forward to talk about his sex addiction. I'm sorry Eric but I would be addicted to sex too if I got to lay my head on Halle's berries every night. It seems like such a Hollywood thing to me. Frankly, I think I'm too tired after a long day of "real" work to be addicted to anything. The only kind of love in LaLa Land is that of self love, these actors and actresses give off the vibe that the only "parts" they are interested in is each other's. I don't think that heading off to Vancouver for a few months, shooting with the dead sexy Gillian Anderson did anything to help curb Mr. Douchecovny's voracious appetite. I'm not insinuating anything here, I'm just saying, look at how many celebrities bounce from one on-set romance to another. There seems to be no accountability when it comes to pleasures of the traveling pants. Wasn't David's highly acclaimed Showtime show Californication littered with beautiful women baring all sorts of flesh? That's like a coke addict having a summer house in's too damn easy. David, I can solve this issue for you real up Amy Winehouse, get your dinkle tickled, and a few weeks later it will fall off....problem solved!!!! I'm a big fan of Duchnovy's and The X-Files ranks among my most favorite shows of all time but little did I know that the truth Mulder was searching for all those years resided just a few inches below Scully's waist.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Model Citizen in Every Way

So are we supposed to be surprised that it turns out John Edwards had an affair and quite possibly may have fathered a "love" child? Oh the horror, oh the shame....come on, this is really just par for the course. You think politicians and celebrities alike would learn or actually unlearn everything possible that supposedly comes along with being held under the pubic microscope (Yes, I did write pubic). Since when did being a public servant mean "servicing" as many women/men as possible......Roman orgies anyone? This is nothing new, the hookers (oh I'm sorry, the escorts....silly me) in Washington D.C. make Ashley Dupree look like Hannah Montana going out for ice cream with the cast of High School Musical. The news media goes bananas, Edwards has to come out & fess up and the National Enquirer get the credit for breaking the story....kinda makes you rethink the whole "everything they report is bulls**t" stuff the celebrities come out with whenever they get caught with their hand in the nookie jar. Edwards came off as pompous and arrogant as you would expect from someone that obviously considers Bill Clinton the closest thing to Hugh Hefner barely walking on 2 legs (maybe that's why he uses the 3rd one so much). He stated that the affair was during a period that his wife was in remission from her now terminal cancer.....Gold Star Johnnie Boy, you just won Humanitarian of the Year!!!!! The news media argues if whether this will somehow effect the outcome of the upcoming election, hurt the democrats chances to retake the Oral Office.....please, the majority (although some would still argue this point) of American citizens just got done voting for a mentally deficient, prior & possibly current deviant to "lead" this country for the last 8 has that turned out for ya? This will blow over as fast as an E. coli breakout at Taco Bell. Edwards political career in Washington may be over but how long before he's back out on the road stumping for his party, turning it into some kind of documentary filmed by his mistress that wins the Palme d'Or at Cannes in 2009. Right now I can see politicians across the country erasing their Blackberries, destroying videotapes, paying hush money.....the kind of closets you need to hold all these skeletons don't come with a real working man's/woman's paycheck. Politicians and celebrities suffer from the Sally Field Syndrome....."You like me, you really like me". Being showered with adoration, praise & acclaim seems to be the perfect bitches brew to make someone lose all ability to make coherent, mature decisions. This is how I envision it going down a few short years ago......"I did not have sexual relations with that woman" excuse me Mr. President they just found your DNA on that blue dress....." Oh, O.K., I did have sexual relations with that woman but I did it with a cigar". Come on, can't anyone ever just fess up & say "Yes I did it, I loved doing it & I'm about to do it again!!!". I would love just once if a politician would schedule a press conference, bring his Real Doll out with him, some of his bondage equipment, light up a huge joint, sniff some coke off the Press Secretary's arm and shout like some RuPaul/Ellen Degenerate tranny experiment "Hello world, this is me, this is who I am, love it or leave it, bitches!!!!" There are so many underlying reasons as to why we as a society look up to and put our collective fortunes in the hands of those that have "power" and their faces plastered on the covers of all the rags that are so conveniently placed on every corner of every city but no one REALLY wants to address them. "Change" is word being thrown about quite often lately but as we all know, the more things change the more they stay utterly ridiculous. Maybe it's something I'll go into more in the future but for now, bring on Britney at the VMA's and look for John Edwards, sitting front row center between Tila Tequila and a blue dress that can stand on it's own.

Saturday, August 16, 2008


Hype is all over the place in our current culture. We hear about the second coming in all aspects of our society from products, personalities, music , movies, athletes, politicians, etc. The media at large will grasp on to any hot new "thing" feed it into our subconscious until we're waiting in line at Walmart for that $100 couch that wont stain & will convert into a hydrogen fuel car at the touch of a button. Sometimes though and very infrequently someone or something will come along & live up to all the hype. As someone who considered himself a better than average athlete at one time in my life, I have to say that I have been blown away by Michael Phelps at these Summer Olympic Games. I really wasn't that jazzed for the games, they kinda crept up on me, I knew about Phelps' quest for 8 Gold Medals but really wasn't paying much attention to what that really meant. I was also concentrating on my Yankees but that's a whole other story....After watching Phelps and reading about his regimen (I mean come on, the guy eats 12,000 calories a day) I was totally inspired by the amount of effort that all these world class athletes put into their training leading up to the Olympics. Phelps starting training for '08 the day after the '04 Olympics ended and boy does it show. Not only has he delivered in every final so far but he is setting world records (as if that's an easy thing to do) and crushing other world class swimmers that in any other Olympics in some parallel universe in which Phelps does not exist would be wearing some gold bling around their necks as well. It's a grueling schedule, 17 total races in 7 days, massive commitments to the media, warm ups, warm downs....the guy is a machine. I could understand that if last night maybe he was a bit tired, got edged out at the wall & would have to settle for a Silver in his ultimate quest but no, somehow remarkably he comes from behind with the slimmest of margins to once again stand atop the podium (which should now be called the House that Phelps Owns). There have been & will be other great moments at these Olympics but at least so far the person that everyone will be trying to emulate swims with the fishes.