Tondar's Daily Rant

Prepare yourself for the writings of Tondar the Destroyer, Baron of Atlanta, Rightful Heir to the Throne of Spain, from whom all babies come. As his will be blogged, so let it be done.

Friday, July 07, 2006

ANOTHER MESS FOR BUSH

The problem with the Bush Administration is that he and the Republicans seem to be the only ones capable of fighting the war on terror. On the other hand we get frightening stories like this. Key phrases...

Abu Omar, Sismi di Milano, e Marco Mancini.


Let's see if the American media picks up on this one. They should since its a nice anti-Bush story. On the other hand Cindy Sheehan might not be able to translate the Italian for the our Journalists.

Thursday, July 06, 2006

DON'T CELEBRATE YET CHI-TOWN

Sure they landed Ben Wallace with a dumptruck of money. However, they made the mistake of trading away their other big man. Just like in Detroit, look for Ben Wallace to be a timid intimidator when the Dwyane Wades of the league penetrate the Bulls perimeter defense. After all, Ben Wallace can't collect fouls, his team may need him down the stretch! But if you're still thinking this was a good idea, check out the pros and cons from SI's Kelly Dwyer. Money quote...

He'll be 36 years old when his contract expires and it has been reported that he will make an average of $15 million per year over the course of his four-year deal with the Bulls. His per-game and per-minute rebounding and blocked-shot averages have gone down for the last three seasons. He can't score, owns a right wrist that sometimes goes numb on him during the course of a game and he's joining a team that was 23rd in offensive efficiency last season.

Yeah, this can't miss.

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

BIG BEN, BYE BYE

There's really a lot to this move. You can't simply say this is about Ben and money because that is only part of the story. You have to start at the top and work your way down. We're talking wheels within wheels creating this perfect storm with plenty of blame to go around...

Now if you start at the top, the first person to blame is Pistons owner Bill Davidson. The Pistons COULD have matched the Bulls offer, but the owner has no desire to go over the salary cap and into the luxury tax penalty, thus the Pistons are limited in their personnel moves and are not able to retain players like Mehmet Okur, Corliss Williamson, Darko Milicic, or Ben Wallace for market price. Now, nobody expects the Pistons to be as retarded as the Knicks, Lakers or 76ers in their spending. However, teams like San Antonio, Dallas and Phoenix actually are willing to spend money to retain their core and remain competitive. This angle has been sadly overlooked in the media coverage. If Detroit were to match the offer they would go from having 21st to having the 5th highest payroll, and still not have half of the abortion Isiah Thomas created in New York. Boo Bill Davidson.

Secondly, we have to blame Joe Dumars. He made some great moves early in this decade bringing in Chauncey and Rip and my personal favorite is where he screwed Orlando sideways in the Grant Hill for Chucky Atkins and Ben Wallace steal. But I think it can pretty much be said that he hasn't had a great move since he signed Antonio McDyess in the summer of 2004. Joe has drafted poorly and has continually traded or allowed the best talent to escape in what amount to salary dumps (remember the Corliss Williamson for retired Derek Coleman trade?). Of course his biggest mistake is the Darko debacle. In a move for the future he drafts the Human Victory Cigar, allows him to rot on the bench, and then trades him away for an expiring contract and future considerations only to see him average double digits in Orlando. All the way around this move became a worst-case-scenario for Detroit. To add insult to injury, after all the cap clearing moves we find that it still wasn't enough to maintain the championship core from 2004. The lone upside of all of this is that 2007 has a deep draft and a deep free agent class. Things look dark now, but if we get a solid pick from the Darko trade and LeBron or Dwyane Wade decide not to re-sign, we could still come out on top. But that is a year away and there's a full season yet to be played. Boo Joe Dumars.

Third we have to look to Flip Saunders. Strategically, he did the right thing by avoiding Ben Wallace offensively like the plague. Unfortunately, this is poor leadership and led to Ben becoming disgruntled. Now at this point of his career the man is suddenly not going to become Shaq, but the occasional backdoor or alley-oop would have fed the fro's ego and kept him happy and possibly even mentally connected enough to hit some free throws during the playoffs. Yeah, we know Flip likes Chauncey. In fact, thanks to his basketball crush they will now be forced to spend 2007 together in a love-fest. Boo Flip Saunders.

When it comes to Ben Wallace there was a commercial that was running all through the Finals that was the perfect metaphor for his play. The commercial opens with Ben Wallace being announced in the starting lineups, but for some reason he's not there. The joke is that he is in the locker-room talking to his wife on the phone and can't hang up because he has SSSSSOOOOOOOO many minutes. The first time I saw this I died laughing because surely it must have been a Pistons playoff game if Ben Wallace didn't show up. I'm not really sure how to extend the commercial metaphor to his detrimental free throw shooting. But unlike years past the way he faded down the stretch made me realize that he is too much of a liability on the offensive end when a foul on him is effectively a turnover.

Finally all things considered Nazr Muhammad is a solid pick up. During the last season he got the shaft as San Antonio became more up-tempo and opted to go with Tim Duncan at the 5. But looking back to his days in Atlanta and New York, Nazr was a hard worker that did all the little things to help his team. Though he doesn't have the energy or the shot blocking presence of Big Ben, he can potentially score more points and will certainly be a solid presence on the boards. Worst-case scenario he is a career 66% free throw shooter, so a Pistons fan has to smile at the 25% gain in this exchange. Unfortunately by giving him the mid-level exception this ties the Pistons financially and won't allow them to pursue a deeper bench via free agents like Bonzi Wells. Looking ahead to next season, unless players like Carlos Delfino, Jason Maxiell, and Amir Johnson suddenly step up, look for the "Starting 5 Plus One" to be a mediocre 48 win playoff team.

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

HELP THE PIPESMITH

So today I went to Home Depot to begin work on a third sword. Our previous efforts have all come undone due to cross piece in the middle of the sword breaking (see picture below). Whether it is via the blade or hard contact with cement this piece cannot stand up to the stress placed upon it by the Baron of Atlanta. As you can see this is a 1 inch PVC cross. While the handles are cross bars are made of 1 inch pipe, the blade is actually 3/4 inch before it is covered in the insulation that allows me to safely beat the orange out of Clown Hair. My first thought was to replace the cross with iron piping and then build the rest out of PVC. However, today I discovered there is no such thing as an iron cross (outside of the German Army). Thus after wandering up and down the Home Depot plumbing department, I simply left empty handed. There's no need to start a new sword if I can't figure out a way to make it stand up to the stress involved in a holy crusade.

Sunday, July 02, 2006

THE ROBERTS COURT?

The NYTimes has a good piece that runs down the important cases from the last Supreme Court term. The Times also makes some interesting points about this not really being the "Roberts Court" but a continuation of the divisive "Stevens Court." It's worth a read. Afterall, this is the third branch of our Federal Govt. As a good citizen, you should take the time to be informed on such subjects.
KATHERINE WATCH

Comin' at you from that land down under...

"G'day mates!

How are you all? I hope this email finds you well!

I made it! We are in the land down under! After 2.5 days of traveling, we finally arrived in Sydney. I can't believe I have been here for 2 days already, time is flying by! The students are great, and all very sweet. All 36 of them are wonderful so far! I am very lucky!

So after the 14 hour flight, we made it alive. 14 is the magic number.... a 14 hour layover, 14 hour flight, and a 14 hour time difference! That's right! It is Monday here, and only Sunday for you all! I am 14 hours ahead of you, so now it is 6am on Monday morning, meaning that it is 4pm on Sunday evening for you! Crazy!

Sydney is absolutely stunning. The city is super clean and pretty, and it has some beautiful weather right now, especially considering it is winter here! The first day we arrived, we took a cruise through the harbour and had lunch, and we got to tour the Opera House! WOW! I have always dreamed of seeing it, but once you are inside and learning about how the building was built, it is even more amazing!

Yesterday was even better! We started the day visiting an opal factory, and we got to see the largest opal in the world! Then we had lunch and spent the rest of the afternoon climbing the bridge! The entire thing took 3.5 hours, so it was crazy! We had to wear special suits and be hooked to a line so we wouldn't fall off. It was one of the most incredible experiences of my life! What a view from up there! I can't wait to upload pictures to share!

Last night we went to Hard Rock Cafe for dinner, which the kids loved. We got a few minutes to go shopping, which is always fun! This morning we are heading north on the eastern coast where we will do a high ropes course and a zip line for the rest of the day.

Australia is a beautiful place! I hope you all make it here one day to experience it for yourselves!"
CAN'T GET YOUR HEAD AROUND IT WATCH

-Pump it up Seth!
-I'm about to!

-Pump it up Seth!
-Cause that's what I was born to do!

Seth found this little story about an indecent exposure case in Oklahoma...


Former Judge Donald D. Thompson, a veteran of 23 years on the bench, is on trial on charges he used a penis pump on himself in the courtroom while sitting in judgment of others.

Over the past few days, the jurors have watched a defense attorney and a prosecutor pantomime masturbation. A doctor has lectured on the lengths the defendant was willing to go to enhance his sexual performance.

The white-handled sexual device sits before the jury box for hours at a time. Occasionally an attorney picks it up and squeezes the handle, demonstrating the "sh-sh" sound of air rushing through the contraption's plastic tubing.


If the following part of the story is true, this is where the judge screws up his testimony...

Thompson took the stand in his own defense, saying the device was a gag gift from a longtime friend with whom he had joked about erectile dysfunction. He said he kept the pump under the bench or in his office but didn't use it.


"Your honor, if you didn't use the pump then why in the name of Bob Dole did you move from chambers to the bench!?"

*SNAP* BUSTED!
FRANKIE GOES TO HOLLYWOOD

From Frank...

To All:

I have another Star Sighting to report, this time concerning a Mr. Larry King.

On Wednesday, I went with a friend who had free passes to an early showing of Pirates of the Caribbean-Dead Man's Chest, at the Arc Light in Hollywood. (If anyone wants an early review of the film, please email me. In short, not so good.)
While waiting in line for popcorn before the film began, I overheard a voice behind me to my right, an old gravelly voice. I thought to myself, "Man, that old man sounds a lot like Larry King." Well, I turn to my right, and there he was: Larry King. He was waiting to get some treats as well from the concession stand.

He was A LOT more tiny than I imagined him to be. He is quite short and thin. My friend described him as looking like, "Mr. Burns from the Simpsons or one of those veloraptors (sp?-little dinosaurs) from Jurassic Park." He was wearing his old-man attire, suspenders and all. He had someone from the free showing staff as an escort.

On a side note, the Arc Light is close to the CNN LA building. According to the friend I was with who works for local news in LA, CNN is a really bad employer.


My question is about his smell. I know Larry King hawks garlic supplements, but could you smell it rolling off of him like he ate fresh cloves, and it was pouring out of every oriface? Even if he doesn't smell like garlic I bet he has old man smell or some other stink about him. At least that's the impression I always got.
QUADROPHENIA PROJECT

The Punk and the Godfather



















PUNK:

You declared you would be three inches taller
You only became what we made you.
Thought you were chasing a destiny calling
You only earned what we gave you.
You fell and cried as our people were starving,
Now you know that we blame you.
You tried to walk on the trail we were carving,
Now you know that we framed you.













Godfather:
I'm the guy in the sky
Flying high Flashing eyes
No surprise I told lies
I'm the punk in the gutter
I'm the new president
But I grew and I bent
Don't you know? don't it show?
I'm the punk with the stutter.
My my my my my mmmm my my my.

GGGGG-g-g-g-g generation.












PUNK:

We tried to speak between lines of oration
You could only repeat what we told you.
Your axe belongs to a dying nation,
They don't know that we own you.
You're watching movies trying to find the feelers,
You only see what we show you.
We're the slaves of the phony leaders
Breathe the air we have blown you.



























Godfather:
I'm the guy in the sky
Flying high Flashing eyes
No surprise I told lies
I'm the punk in the gutter
I'm the new president
But I grew and I bent
Don't you know? don't it show?
I'm the punk with the stutter.
My my my my my mmmm my my my.

GGGGG-g-g-g-g generation.











I have to be careful not to preach
I can't pretend that I can teach,
And yet I've lived your future out
By pounding stages like a clown.
And on the dance floor broken glass,
The bloody faces slowly pass,
The broken seats in empty rows,
It all belongs to me you know.