The Daily Belmore

opinions, links, and more…

Good Riddance

Kent Baer has been fired (from the Seattle Times):

Washington defensive coordinator Kent Baer has been fired, according to a source.

The source said Baer was told of the news this morning.

There was no word on whether any other defensive coaches will also be let go.

A UW spokesman did not confirm Baer’s dismissal, and said no announcement is planned at this time.

Baer has worked for UW coach Tyrone Willingham for 13 seasons, first at Stanford, then Notre Dame and since 2005 as the Huskies’ defensive coordinator.

Baer is the longest-tenured of Willingham’s assistants, having been with him since Willingham was named coach at Stanford in 1995. He has been the coordinator of Willingham’s defenses since 1995.

Baer came under increasing fire this season as UW ranked last in the Pac-10, giving up a school-record 446.4 yards per game.

December 17, 2007 Posted by | Sports | , , , , | 1 Comment

France Is Weird

Can someone explain how this policy helps consumers? From Macworld:

Retail prices, particularly of books, are tightly regulated in France.

Using “loss-leaders,” or selling products below cost to attract customers, is illegal. Other restrictions apply to books — retailers must not offer discounts of more than 5 percent on the publisher’s recommended price. Many independent booksellers choose to offer this discount in the form of a loyalty bonus based on previous purchases. Larger booksellers simply slash the sticker price of books.

Maybe the French public just don’t know the difference, but whenever I buy something over $20 (such as a hardback book) I always search around for the cheapest place I can get it from. If the cheapest possible would be $19, I’d be a little unhappy.

Or maybe that’s just the American in me looking for the great deal. Whatever the case, I feel that it’s a little ridiculous that this one segment of the market is so tightly regulated. Does it apply to Audiobooks? Am I taxed for buying something on a trip for much cheaper and bringing it into France?

(The full article is about the French courts telling Amazon.com that they can no longer offer free shipping on books within France, as it breaks this 5% law.)

December 12, 2007 Posted by | News | , , , | 1 Comment

You, Sir, Are An Idiot

And so is anyone who votes for him (from CNN):

Republican presidential hopeful Mike Huckabee refused to retract a statement he made in 1992 calling for the isolation of AIDS patients.

Responding to an Associated Press questionnaire, Huckabee said steps should be taken to “isolate the carriers of this plague” during his failed run for a U.S. Senate seat from Arkansas 15 years ago.

He said he probably would not make the same statement today because of what is known about how HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, is transmitted.

“I had simply made the point — and I still believe this today — that in the late ’80s and early ’90s, when we didn’t know as much as we do now about AIDS, we were acting more out of political correctness than we were about the normal public health protocols that we would have acted,” Huckabee told Fox News on Sunday.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention concluded in 1985 that AIDS was not transmitted by casual contact. But Huckabee said at the time, “there were other concerns being voiced by public health officials.”

December 10, 2007 Posted by | News, Politics | , , | Leave a comment

Arctic Monkeys: 505

Arctic Monkeys – “505

There’s something fascinating about this song.  It starts out slowly, with a haunting keyboard behind the simple vocals, and before you know it you’re 3 minutes into the song and rocking away.  I simply love it.

You can find this track on their latest release, Favourite Worst Nightmare, which I highly recommend picking up.  I’ve had it for a few months, and I love it.

Here’s a video of the band performing the song at BBC2’s Later… with Jools Holland:

December 8, 2007 Posted by | Music, Video | , , , , | Leave a comment

Seinfeld and Superman Commercial

I was watching a rerun of The Tonight Show tonight and Jerry Seinfeld was the guest and he mentioned this commercial, take a look:

This one’s pretty funny too:

December 8, 2007 Posted by | Television, Video | , , , , | Leave a comment

My Parents Are Okay!

For all of those concerned, I got a call from my mother today. Her and my father are a-okay, safely back home. They drove home this afternoon safe and sound, finally getting back in cell phone service after being without power for days. Her exact words were, “It’s nice to have heat again.”

From the Seattle P.I.:


Picture property of the Associated Press. Used without permission.

In other news, I-5 is closed between mile markers 88 and 68, as you can see above. This puts a bit of a damper on the trip to Portland that Kate and I are supposed to be taking on Thursday. But we’re not driving through Yakima. Fuck that. We’re going to take a secret route…shh…don’t tell…

I’ll let you know later in the week if it works out.

December 4, 2007 Posted by | Musings, News, Pictures | , , , , , | 1 Comment

I Was Lucky

Judging from reports around the city (and the entire Pacific Northwest), I made it out pretty lucky in today’s rainstorm. For those that don’t know, near-record rainfall has been cascading down in Seattle (from the P.I.):

By late afternoon Monday, nearly 6 billion gallons of rain — the rough equivalent of six Green Lakes — had fallen, making it the second-wettest day in Seattle history.

That’s a bit ridiculous. Now, I’m not saying I was in the biggest risk area, as I’ve seen much worse footage on TV than anything I’ve driven through today (with the exception of 25th Ave NE just north of NE 75th St; my friend’s Colin, Tony, and James live right across from a clogged drain that covered the entire street and came close to invading their house; lucky for them a Seattle Utilities crew came out and partially unclogged it so now only half of the street is a swimming pool). All I am saying is that I live on a basement unit of a building built into a hill, so the chances of flooding were a bit higher for myself than for, say, those of you living in second level or higher units. That’s all.

I mean, this could have been me:

“It felt like we were on the Titanic,” said Randy Carter, who awoke at 4 a.m. Monday to lights from utility trucks and the realization that his apartment in the Jackson Greens complex in North Seattle was flooded to evacuation levels with three feet of water.

And I feel for Mr. Carter, but I’m also thankful that I was not victim to that.

The only other thing I’m worried about now is how my parents are doing. They’re currently stuck down in Lincoln City, where the winds have taken out so many trees that there are no major routes out.  This picture, from KATU, was taken less than a mile from their beach house:

From KATU:

Highways 26, 6, 18 and 30 all were closed Monday morning, isolating coastal communities. Many areas lost power as winds measuring near 100 mph battered towns and building. Trees blew over, buildings sustained damage and debris blew down streets in Tillamook, where the Wilson River began flowing down the lanes of Highway 101, which was also closed in several locations.

“This storm is hitting the coast so hard, it’s not leaving any road open,” Department of Transportation spokeswoman Christine Miles said.

And:

Highway 26 linking the coast to the Willamette Valley was closed in the Coast Range due to treacherous conditions. Mudslides, downed trees and water over roadways also closed Highway 30 near the Columbia-Clatsop County line.

My mom called me last night to let me know they weren’t going to make it out before the storm so they were going to sit tight and wait it out. The problem is that the power is out all over the coast, so they can’t even get on their cell phones to call out.

So we’ll see. I’ll give you an update in the next few days once I talk to them.

December 3, 2007 Posted by | Musings, News | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

As Seen On MySpace!

From the Seattle P.I.:

A 21-year-old man, whom police identified in part through photographs on MySpace.com, has been charged with three counts of assault stemming from last month’s shooting at Capitol Hill’s Sugar nightclub.

Michael Anthony Bassett is accused of shooting three people inside the club at 916 E. Pike St. on Nov. 19, critically wounding one with a shot to the abdomen.

December 3, 2007 Posted by | News | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Belmore Rankings: Week 15

Here’s how I see it after the final week of the regular season:

  1. LSU (11-2)
  2. Virginia Tech (11-2)
  3. Ohio State (11-1)
  4. Missouri (11-2)
  5. West Virginia (10-2)
  6. Oklahoma (11-2)
  7. Georgia (10-2)
  8. Kansas (11-1)
  9. Arizona State (10-2)
  10. Florida (9-3)
  11. Brigham Young (10-2)
  12. USC (10-2)
  13. Boston College (10-3)
  14. Hawaii (12-0)
  15. South Florida (9-3)
  16. Illinois (9-3)
  17. Clemson (9-3)
  18. UCF (10-3)
  19. Virginia (9-3)
  20. Texas (9-3)
  21. Tennessee (9-4)
  22. Boise State (10-2)
  23. Cincinnati (9-3)
  24. Connecticut (9-3)
  25. Wisconsin (9-3)

Not the consensus, and I don’t like that Missouri is ahead of Oklahoma (although, the point of this poll is to not heavily weigh one game, nor is it to factor in margin of victory, much to the dismay of poor Oklahoma coach Bob Stoops). I’ll see about some tweaks in the offseason, but all in all I think it did a pretty good job.

Now, if I ruled the lands of college football? I’d have a playoff with those top 8 (or 16 if you want to add an extra week) teams, leading to two semifinal games played at two of the BCS bowls, and then the championship game at another. The fourth bowl could be either a third place game (which would be tough on the fans for travel) or it could have it’s classic match-up using teams that did not make it to the playoffs. I don’t have all the specifics, I just don’t think it’s fair to have everything decided by computers (although I still think that seasons like this are exactly why the BCS was created…to add some hard numbers to the speculation showed by the voters).

Who played the toughest schedule this year? Shockingly, it was Washington (4-9, BR: #92). Their opponents had a collective .622 winning percentage, the highest by a full point in all of FBS schools.

The easiest schedule goes to Western Kentucky (7-5, BR: #77), leapfrogging Hawaii at the end of the year. Their opponents had a collective .271 winning percentage. That’s worse than Hawaii, who was penalized with two FCS schools that I calculated as 0% teams. Pretty weak, Western Kentucky.

December 2, 2007 Posted by | Sports | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Put Him In Jail

Did you hear about the judge who placed an entire courtroom in jail? Well, a commission on judicial conduct has removed him from office. From the BBC:

A US judge has been removed from the bench for jailing an entire courtroom audience after none of them admitted being responsible for a ringing phone.

Judge Robert Restaino was presiding over a domestic violence case in the city of Niagara Falls in March 2005.

A commission on judicial conduct said Judge Restaino had acted “without any semblance of a lawful basis” and behaved like a “petty tyrant”.

Awesome. If you want my vote, he should be sent to jail for the total amount of time that all of these people had to serve.

December 1, 2007 Posted by | News | , , , , | Leave a comment