Saturday, September 29, 2007

Tech Stuns #13 Clemson, 13-3

It's Saturday night and I'm just getting settled after a hot afternoon at Bobby Dodd Stadium in Downtown Atlanta and then coming home to watch the entire game again on my DVR. I'm still euphoric from watching Tech's defense shut down the the 13th ranked Clemson Tiger's bad-ass running attack. Tech's running attack was in full force, with Tashard Choice running crazy over the Country Bumpkins, gaining 145 yards on 32 carries with one touchdown. All we needed was one touchdown, as the Tiger's kicking game sputtered to a halt (their kicker made only one of five field goal attempts). Tack on the 6 sacks and the blocked punt... and Tech rode the defensive struggle to victory.

I thought that Tech could only win if certain things happened:
  • The defensive line had to keep "Thunder and Lightning" to under 100 combined yards rushing... MISSION ACCOMPLISHED
  • The defensive secondary had to eliminate the big play (no 40+ yard gains... MISSION ACCOMPLISHED
  • The defense had to keep Clemson from scoring (if I hear the "Tiger Rag" more than 3 or 4 times we're gonna lose)... MISSION ACCOMPLISHED

  • The offensive line had to open up the running lanes for Tashard Choice to gain more than 100 yards (when he goes over 100, we usually win)... MISSION ACCOMPLISHED
  • Taylor Bennett could not take any sacks for negative yardage... MISSION ACCOMPLISHED
  • The offense had to have long time-consuming drives and keep the score close (this way our defense can stay fresh during a hot afternoon in Atlanta)... MISSION ACCOMPLISHED

  • "Thunder" and "Lightning" were smothered by a defense the shut down the running and air attack of Clemson. Tech got away with a BIG WIN over a quality opponent in a MUST WIN situation.

    You know what time it is... strike up the band:
    "I'm a ramblin' wreck from Georgia Tech and helluva engineer!"


    Friday, September 28, 2007

    Clemson vs. Georgia Tech 2008

    On Saturday, September 29th, the orange-clad Clemson Tigers and their fans will come to the "big city" for an ACC showdown. Clutching a well-deserved Top 15 ranking, Clemson brings that vaunted "Thunder & Lightning" backfield of James Davis and speedy C.J. Spiller to Bobby Dodd Stadium in Atlanta to pile on yardage after last year's 31-7 drubbing of Tech.

    Tech has a slim hope of winning the game if they can keep these two backs from breaking out on long runs and keeping the score close. Last year's score was a bit of an anomaly since most games in last 10 years have been pretty close (decided by five points or less). Tech's defense if going to have to play their best game of the year, after whipping on the pansy 0-4 Fighting Irish of Notre Dame and Div II-A Samford. We were brought back down to earth after getting dismantled by BC and then losing a shocker in Charlottesville last week to Virginia. We are now 0-2 in the ACC and facing probably the best team we'll meet all year!

    In order to win, Tech must do the following:
  • The defensive line has to keep "Thunder and Lightning" to under 100 combined yards rushing
  • The defensive secondary has to eliminate the big play (no 40+ yard gains)
  • The defense has to keep Clemson from scoring (if I hear the "Tiger Rag" more than 3 or 4 times - Clemson's band plays this little ditty after every touchdown - we're gonna lose)

  • The offensive line has to open up the running lanes for Tashard Choice to gain more than 100 yards (when he goes over 100, we usually win)
  • The wide receivers have to get open down field quickly, so Taylor Bennett get the ball out of his hands and not take any sacks for negative yardage
  • The offense has to have long time-consuming drives and keep the score close (this way our defense can stay fresh during a hot afternoon in Atlanta)

  • Over the past two weeks, Taylor Bennett has shown why he was behind Reggie Ball on the depth chart: he hasn't shown the ability to win the close (and BIG) games (see West Virginia in Gator Bowl and last week at UVA).

    We have a good defense, but if they are spending well over half of the game on the field backpedaling and running around after Davis & Spiller, we are going to lose. I gotta root for the Yellow Jackets, but I also gotta call 'em as I see 'em!

    And if I hear that damn "Tiger Rag" one more time, I'm gonna puke!


    Thursday, September 27, 2007

    plezWorld on Michael Vick - Last Word

    Thanks for the memories, Mike!

    Just when you thought it couldn't get any worse... it does!

    As a condition of his plea agreement, Michael Vick is subject to a series of drug tests until his sentencing on December 10th. He apparently pee'd in a cup on September 13th and that sample resulted in a positive test for marijuana.

    The AJC reports,
    Falcons quarterback Michael Vick tested positive for marijuana, has been confined to his Virginia residence at night, forced to wear an electronic monitoring device and ordered to receive mental health counseling, according to court documents filed Wednesday.

    Vick tested positive in a urine sample submitted on Sept. 13, 17 days after entering a plea agreement in federal court on felony charges related to dogfighting. He faces up to five years in prison on those charges and will be sentenced on Dec. 10.
    court documents filed Wednesday, Hudson ordered that Vick submit to any method of testing "for determining whether the defendant is using a prohibited substance." Such methods may be used with random frequency and include urine testing and the wearing of a sweat patch.

    According to the National Institute of Drug Abuse, marijuana "can be detected by standard urine testing methods several days after a smoking session. However, in chronic heavy users, traces can sometimes be detected for weeks after they have stopped using marijuana."
    As an Atlanta Falcon, Vick's transgressions included:
  • Giving the hometown fans "the bird" while being hurled a number of insults after an ugly loss during the season.
  • Being detained at the Miami Airport when a "water bottle" that he was carrying was found to have a secret compartment that contained a funny (i.e. marijuana) smell; he claimed he used it to carry his jewelry... RIGHT!
  • In July 2006, a picture of Vick with his girlfriend with a box of matches on his lap and a blunt in his hand surfaces... of course, he profusely denied that he loved Mary Jane ("do ya! do ya! do ya! do ya really love me, Mary Jane?" - Rick James) ...the story failed to grow any legs.
  • Missing a Congressional breakfast in his honor because he missed a flight out of Atlanta.
  • The drug raid at his home in Virginia due to illegal drug activity of one of his cousins; the property had evidence of illegal dog fights and abused animals, which led to the investigation and the eventual indictments for which he has plead guilty.
  • And who can forget the whole Ron Mexico incident?

  • Since the indictment, the Vick Story continues to blossom:
  • Gets banned from training camp by the NFL Commissioner after the indictment is filed.
  • Gets suspended indefinitely by the NFL Commissioner after his cohorts roll on him and take a plea agreement.
  • He cops a plea on August 27th, pleading guilty to basically bank rolling the dogfighting enterprise and contributing to the slaughter of uncompetitive dogs; the result of the agreement means that he'll do some jail time.
  • After he signs the plea agreement, the Falcons move to recoup a portion of his signing bonus, maybe as much as $20 million.
  • Surry County, Virginia DA says they plan to file an indictment of their own for Vick's dogfighting operation which was run in that county.
  • A Canadian Bank sues Vick for a defaulted $2.5 million loan because of changes in his employment... basically, he's unemployed!
  • And now, word comes out that on September 13th, just a few weeks after he signs the plea agreement, Vick flunks a drug test... testing positive for marijuana. OUCH!


    He just had to hit that blunt, just one more time, didn't he?

    When I was in college, I drank to excess and occassionally imbibed on the bong and the blunt. *smile*

    But guess what? The company that I work for and most of our clients test us for illegal drugs, as a condition of employment. Because I want to stay employed by my company and our clients, I do not do drugs. It's that simple!

    As I wrote back in pre-indictment May, "I've given Mike Vick a pass ever since he's been in Atlanta; he is undoubtedly the most thrilling and exciting player in the NFL (in my opinion). With that said, I'm highly disappointed in his behavior and his lack of leadership."

    Personally, I'm tired of the apologies, the fake contrition, and the bold faced lies. I've invested enough emotion, caring, and pixels on this dude. He has continued to embarrass and piss on every fan who has been supporting him through this ordeal. He's even dragged down the NAACP with his "Bad Newz"!

    When he spoke of wanting and needing to change so that he can do what he loves to do (play football), I thought that he had turned the corner... I thought that he finally acknowledged that he could no longer play lip service to change, but that he would have to employ some actionable tactics to make it happen.

    Well, he didn't!

    Of course, he invoked the name of Jesus during his post-indictment press conference; so now Michael Vick is not only a liar, but he's also a f*ckin' blasphemer!

    So now, I don't care. He has just added more fuel to the fire for every racist, redneck, and sports talk pundit about his THUG persona, lack of intelligence, and lack of productivity on the football field for the last two seasons. As far as I'm concerned, you can feed Mike Vick to the dogs!

    plezWorld is DONE! My homeboy (yeah, I went to high school in the Hampton Roads area) has received his last post on this blog. He's ruined his life and in the process, he's also f*cked up the Dirty Birds (who are now sporting a dismal 0-3 record, with ZERO wins in sight), and ruined my football season (because Georgia Tech is also playing like crap and I have no one to cheer for this fall) to boot! At this point, Vick gets everything that he deserves... and then some.

    This is the LAST WORD on Michael Vick on plezWorld!

    Tuesday, September 25, 2007

    The Hate That Hate Produced (1959)

    This documentary from 1959 features a pre-60 Minutes Mike Wallace in a 1 hour propaganda piece on "dangers" of the Nation of Islam (Black Muslims) and Black Nationalists. An interesting note is that a Black reporter, Louis Lomax, conducted a number of the interviews. The video quality is poor, but the audio is excellent... and for some reason, the video repeats after the first hour.

    Although, the rhetoric of the Nation of Islam (Elijah Muhammad and Malcolm X) is imflammatory, you should also note that their message is one of self-empowerment and self-determination of Black people. Framed against that backdrop of the Civil Rights Movement and the fervent segregationist movement in the South of the late 1950's, it is remarkable that there was a group of people who exhibited Black Pride before it was fashionable to do so. They are no more interested in integration than the race-mongering politicians of the Jim Crow South.

    It is pretty amazing that today, no one would ever spend this much time examining the thoughts and philosophies of Black people in this country. If it is not uttered by some profiteering reverend, mainstream America will not hear it. We are also dumbed-down and engrossed in 20-second sound bites, we are unable (and unwilling) to learn about people who may think differently than us.

    On the heels of the Jena 6 Controversy that led to a large demonstration in Jena, LA last week, think of how differently our Black communities would have evolved over the past 40 years if the separatist movement of the Nation of Islam had been embraced rather than the non-violence movement of Dr. King. Think of how different the Civil Rights Act of 1964 would have looked had Blacks demanded and won equal accomodation and self-determination, rather than integration. Just a thought.

    As a teenager, plezWorld read the Autobiography of Malcolm X; this book changed the way that I looked at myself, other Black people, my religion, and questioned the relative equality that was extended to Black people by The Establishment. I even went out and obtained a copy of the Koran... unfortunately, reading the Koran was no more inspiring than reading the Holy Bible.

    Remember, this documentary was produced in 1959! I must say that Mike Wallace did an admirable job of scaring the be-jesus out of white people and a fair number of Black people, as well. plezWorld was born near New York City in the early-1960's and my parents exposed me to a lot of things, but the Black Muslims were not one of them!

    Hat Tip: Black Educator

    Monday, September 24, 2007

    Good Night, My SugarPlum!

    I just came down to my office to check e-mail before watching some Monday Night Football. As is our custom, every night when we tuck my daughter (The SugarPlum) into bed, my wife and/or I sing that enduring classic from the Lawrence Welk Show: "Bubbles in the Wine."

    After a few kisses, SugarPlum is off to dreamland for the remainder of the night.
    The SugarPlum Version
    Good night, sleep tight,
    And pleasant dreams to you,
    Here's a wish [kiss] and a kiss [kiss]
    That every dream comes true.
    And now 'til we meet again...
    Adios, au revior, auf weidersehen... Good Night, SugarPlum![kiss]

    It's funny that both my wife and I remember this song from our childhood, watching The Lawrence Welk Show on Sunday nights before 60 Minutes with my family.

    Truly, a "kinder and gentler" time.

    Thursday, September 20, 2007

    Black Bloggers Fuel Jena 6 Protest

    It is rare that I turn plezWorld over to an entire news article, but this one is so important, its presence cannot be denied. Two days ago, a story ran in the Chicago Tribune that correctly identified a cosmic shift in direction for the slowing Civil Rights Movement. As evidenced by the Shaquanda Cotton incident in Texas, the Genarlow Wilson sentence in Georgia, and now the Jena 6 Ordeal in Louisiana, the Blackosphere (Black Bloggers) have taken a leadership position normally reserved for "race baiting" reverends to enlighten the country about wrongs being perpetrated against Black people. Black Bloggers such as plezWorld, others associated with the AfroSphere, and hundreds of others, established a clarion call to the world to shine a light on the dark and miserable existence that is Jena, Louisiana... and its cold and racist underbelly.

    I am privileged to have been a part of what the article calls the "viral civil rights movement." But moreso, I take solice in the fact that the AfroSphere, after only a year or so of existence, can take the credit for being a catalyst for change in this country: read the article about today's March on Jena.

    The Chicago Tribune article follows (in its entirety):
    Blogs help drive Jena protest
    By Howard Witt Tribune senior correspondent
    5:14 PM CDT, September 18, 2007

    JENA, La. - There is no single leader. There is no agreed schedule. Organizers aren't even certain where everyone is supposed to gather, let alone use the restroom. The only thing that is known for sure is that thousands of protesters are boarding buses at churches, colleges and community centers across the country this week, headed for this tiny dot on the map of central Louisiana.

    What could turn out to be one of the largest civil rights demonstrations in years is set to take place here Thursday, when Rev. Jesse Jackson, Rev. Al Sharpton, Martin Luther King III, popular black radio talk show hosts and other celebrities converge in Jena to protest what they regard as unequal treatment of African-Americans in this racially fractured Deep South town.

    Yet this will be a civil rights protest literally conjured out of the ether of cyberspace, of a type that has never happened before in America—a collective national mass action grown from a grassroots word-of-mouth movement spread via Internet blogs, e-mails, message boards and talk radio.

    Jackson, Sharpton and other big-name civil rights figures, far from leading this movement, have had to scramble to catch up. So, too, has the national media, which has only recently noticed a story that has been agitating many black Americans for months.

    As formidable as it is amorphous, this new African-American blogosphere, which scarcely even existed a year ago, now comprises hundreds of interlinked blogs and tens of the thousands of followers who within a matter of a few weeks collected 220,000 petition signatures—and more than $130,000 in donations for legal fees—in support of six black Jena teenagers who are being prosecuted on felony battery charges for beating a white student.

    "Ten years ago this couldn't have happened," said Sharpton, who said he first heard about the Jena case on the Internet. "You didn't have the Internet and you didn't have black blogs and you didn't have national radio shows. Now we can talk to all of black America every day. We've been able to form our own underground railroad of information, and when everybody else looks up, it's already done."

    Hotels are booked up for miles around Jena, the Louisiana State Police are drawing officers from across the state to help control the crowds and schools and many businesses in the town of 3,000 will close Thursday in anticipation of 10,000 or more demonstrators who are expected, organizers predicted.

    The momentum for the protest did not slow even when the original reason for the event—the scheduled sentencing of Mychal Bell, 17, the first of the "Jena 6" defendants to be tried and convicted of aggravated second-degree battery—evaporated.

    Last week, a state appellate court abruptly vacated Bell's June 28 conviction, ruling that he had been improperly tried as an adult rather than a juvenile. The local district attorney, Reed Walters, has vowed to challenge that decision, and Bell remains jailed in lieu of $90,000 bond.

    What's animating the protesters is not merely Bell's legal predicament but the larger perception that blacks in Jena, who make up 12 percent of the population, are still subjected to the kind of persistent racial inequality that once predominated across the Old South.

    In a town where whites voted overwhelmingly for former Ku Klux Klan leader David Duke when he ran for Louisiana governor in 1991, one local barber shop still refuses to cut black men's hair.

    And the trouble in Jena (pronounced Jee-na) started a year ago with a resonant symbol from the Jim Crow past: After black students asked administrators at the local high school for permission to sit beneath a shade tree traditionally used only by whites, white students hung three nooses from the tree. The incident outraged black students and their parents, but was dismissed by the school superintendent as a youthful prank; he punished the white students with three-day suspensions.

    A series of fights between whites and blacks ensued, both on and off the campus. Whites implicated in the fights were charged with misdemeanors or not at all, while the blacks were charged with felonies.

    In November, someone burned down the central wing of the high school—an arson for which no one has been arrested.

    And then in early December, Bell and five other black students at the high school were charged after a white student was jumped and beaten while he lay unconscious.

    Although the white student was treated and released at a local hospital, Walters initially charged the six black youths with attempted murder—charges that he later reduced to aggravated second-degree battery after black bloggers and civil rights leaders from across the country raised complaints that the charges were excessive.

    Besides Sharpton, King and Jackson, the NAACP and the ACLU will have contingents here Thursday, as will the Millions More Movement led by Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan.

    But many black bloggers say the Jena demonstration is really more about a new generation of civil rights activists who learned about the Jena case not from Operation Push but from hip-hop music blogs that featured the story or popular black entertainers such as Mos Def who have turned it into a crusade.

    "In traditional civil rights groups, there's a pattern—you call a meeting, you see when everybody can get together, you have to decide where to meet," said Shawn Williams, 33, a pharmaceutical salesman and former college NAACP leader who runs the popular Dallas South Blog.

    "All that takes time," Williams added. "When you look at how this civil rights movement is working, once something gets out there, the action is immediate—here's what we're going to write about, here's the petition, here's the protest. It takes place within minutes, hours and days, not weeks or months."

    This new, "viral" civil rights movement now taking shape still benefits from the participation of well-known leaders like Jackson or Sharpton—it just doesn't depend on them, bloggers say.

    It was black bloggers, for example, who first picked up the story of Shaquanda Cotton, a 14-year-old black girl from the east Texas town of Paris who was sentenced to up to 7 years in youth prison for shoving a hall monitor at her high school. The judge who heard her case had given probation to a 14-year-old white girl charged with the more serious crime of arson.

    After the bloggers and their readers bombarded the Texas governor with protest letters and petitions, Texas authorities freed Cotton—days before Sharpton had scheduled a rally on her behalf.

    "When Rev. Jackson or Rev. Sharpton or other recognized leaders get involved, that's helpful, and it helps them—they can see where momentum is building around an issue," said James Rucker, the 38-year-old founder of Color of Change, an Internet-based civil rights group that has more than 280,000 subscribers. "You can argue they came late to Jena, but they are here now, which is good."

    The blogs also serve as watchdogs over more traditional civil rights groups. When the NAACP first began featuring the Jena case on its Web site and claimed to be soliciting contributions for the teens' legal defense, it was a black blogger who quickly pointed out that the donation link directed visitors to the generic NAACP fundraising page, with no way for donors to direct their funds to the Jena defendants.

    Within days, the link was redirected to a bona fide Jena 6 fundraising site.

    I'm not physically in Jena, Louisiana today, but I'm there in spirit!

    Wednesday, September 19, 2007

    Home Network Solution - Powerline Ethernet Adapter

    Here's the problem: the mothership (main home computer and wireless router) is in my basement office. The wife has a shiny new office on the main level and another PC that is connected via wireless modem to the mothership. Unfortunately, due to the sensitive nature of her job, her work laptop doesn't work with a wireless modem! What to do?

  • Allow the wife to sit on the floor in my basement office when she wants to access her e-mail at work.
  • Move the DSL modem to the wife's office and work via a wireless modem in my basement office.
  • Tell her go into the office everyday, so she doesn't have worry about trying to connect from home.
  • Drill some holes in the side of the house and run a Ethernet cable upstairs along the outside of the house.

    NO! NO! NO! And NO!

    The answer: Purchase a Powerline Ethernet Adapter which creates an Ethernet network out of your homes electrical system. Plug one adapter into an electrical outlet near the router attached to my basement office computer. Attach the router to the first adapter. Plug the second adapter into an electrical outlet in my wife's office. Attach an Ethernet cable to that adapter and her computer... and like magic, her work laptop is attached to the Internet via the router in the basement. The connection speed is that same as if she was connected to the router in my office.

    I went with a Netgear HDX101 200Mbps Powerline HD Ethernet Adapter because my wireless router is also a Netgear model. It cost around $160.00 and installation took the time to plug the two adapters into the electrical outlets on the wall!
  • Saturday, September 15, 2007

    Boston College 24, Georgia Tech 10

    On Saturday, September 15th #21 Boston College came to Atlanta and shocked the #15 Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets at Bobby Dodd Stadium. The game was not as close as the score indicates, as the BC quarterback Matt Ryan threw for a career high 435 yards. He picked Georgia Tech's highly touted defense apart like they were the JV squad.

    On the flip side, the BC defense held GT's star running back Tashard Choice to only 31 yards on 15 carries, ending his 9 game streak of 100+ yard games. And GT quarterback Taylor Bennett looked downright pedestrian in his vain attempts to complete a down field pass. It was total domination on both sides of the ball from the first quarter and after Tech's first possession, the outcome was never in doubt.

    These are two quality programs (possibly the two best in the ACC) and this may be the preview of the ACC Championship Game, which I predict Georgia Tech will win. This was Tech's first true test after thrashing listless Notre Dame (who fell to 0-3) and running up the score on Div II Samford. I'm sure that they learned a lot about themselves and have good game film on what needs to be corrected over this week.

    I was at the game on Saturday evening and my two takeaways are as follows:
    1. Boston College should be in the Top 10 because they are vastly underrated; they have a solid offense and defense.

    2. We'll be seeing QB Matt Ryan at the Heisman Trophy presentation in December. He is a better passer and has more yards than the QB's at Kentucky and Louisville (currently ranked #1 and #2, respectively), and he plays on a much better team than Hawaii.

    Per the challenge from my buddy David, over at SullsBlog, the MIGHTY BC Eagle mascot will be prominently displayed on plezWorld for the remainder of this week.

    Thursday, September 13, 2007

    Greg Oden Out for Rookie Season

    The New York Times reports that Greg Oden, the number one pick of the 2007 draft of the Portland Trail Blazers, will miss his rookie season because of microfracture surgery on his right knee.

    The article quotes the Trail Blazers general manager Kevin Pritchard said as saying, "Certainly this is a setback, but our future is still incredibly bright."

    Excerpts of the article include:
    Greg Oden, the top pick in this year's NBA draft, likely will miss his first season with the Portland Trail Blazers after surgery on his right knee Thursday.

    Doctors found cartilage damage during an exploratory procedure, and team physician Dr. Don Roberts performed microfracture surgery to repair the damage.

    "There are things about this that are positive for Greg. First of all, he is young. The area where the damage was is small and the rest of his knee looked normal," Roberts said in a statement.

    The 7-foot center is expected to be on crutches for up to eight weeks. Full recovery likely will take six to 12 months, the team said. Oden was the No. 1 pick in the June draft out of Ohio State, where he averaged 15.7 points and 9.6 rebounds.
    plez sez: echoes of sam bowie (remember portland picked sam bowie over michael jordan in the 1983 draft). echoes of bill walton (plagued by knee problems most of his career, bill walton's one good year resulting in an nba championship for the trail blazers).

    i feel bad for the franchise. they had an opportunity to pick a more dynamic player who has a tremendous up-side that gred oden does not possess (kevin durant from texas). they went with the "sure thing": a 7-footer who can walk and chew gum at the same time! but nothing is sure when you're dealing with 18- and 19-year olds. for the life of me, i cannot understand how these professional teams can put out so much money for an unproven commodity... it just seems to risky! (check out this ESPN article)

    now, the trail blazers will have to suffer for that risk (played his one year in college with a cast on his right wrist, he had a tonsillectomy soon after he was drafted, and now this).

    Tuesday, September 11, 2007

    Tuesday, September 11, 2001

    plez sez: this day will always be indelibly engraved in my mind and more so today because this is the first time that 9/11 has fallen on a Tuesday since 2001.

    i happened to be home from work that day, because it was the day that my daughter came home for the first time: she was only 12 days old... two weeks ago, we had a BIG A** 6th birthday party for her at my subdivision's pool and clubhouse. twenty-five of her close friends from school and the neighborhood were in attendance. they splashed in the pool. they ate pizza, cake, and punch. and they hammed it up on my daughter's karaoke machine.

    like millions of Americans, i watched in horror as the very symbols of our way of life first stood lifeless with smoke billowing from their windows and then witnessed them crumble into piles of rubble at the feet of New York City.

    my stomach churned as accounts of the Pentagon attack and the plane that went down in Pennsylvania surfaced.

    the "war on terror" was subsequently launched. we sat and watched as our civil liberties were restricted. we sat and watched as our president demonized an entire religion and then invaded a sovereign nation. we continue to sit and watch as over 3,700 U.S. troops have given their lives to our "war on terror."

    Tuesday, September 11, 2001 will always be remembered as the most joyous day of my life as i started my life: a new father holding my beautiful daughter for the very first time... and i will always remember it as the day that we became more callous and hateful as a nation, like when the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor or when James Earl Ray assassinated Martin Luther King, Jr.

    Boston College - Georgia Tech Challenge

    On Saturday evening (8:00 PM on ESPN2), #21 Boston College comes to Atlanta to take on the #15 Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets at Bobby Dodd Stadium. This ACC Game will be a good one as both teams are 2-0, both teams are ranked, and both teams are looking to win the ACC Title this season.

    David, over at SullsBlog, recently suffered a severe blow to the head (of unknown origin). And when he came to, he was under the impression that the Boston College Eagles were going to be able to come down south and whip the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets on Saturday night.

    He is so convinced of this win, he has issued the following challenge:

    In the event that Boston College beats Tech, plezWorld will prominently display the following Boston College logo on this site for all of next week.

    Likewise, when Georgia Tech demonstrates it football prowess and wrecks Boston College, SullsBlog will prominently display the following Georgia Tech logo on his site for all of next week.

    I'll be tailgating with my family and frat brothers before attending the game (I'm a season ticket holder). You may see me on TV (then again, you probably won't).


    Monday, September 10, 2007

    Quote of the Day - September 10, 2007

    "They were faithful and true to you then; they are no less so today. And yet they ask no special favors as a class; they ask no special protection as a race. They feel that they purchased their inheritance, when upon the battlefields of this country, they watered the tree of liberty with the precious blood that flowed from their loyal veins. They ask no favours, they desire; and must have; an equal chance in the race of life."

    - John R. Lynch, former slave and member of the U.S. Congress, speaking in support of the Civil Rights Act of 1875

    John R. Lynch was born a slave on September 10, 1847 in Concordia Parish, Louisiana. His father was an immigrant from Ireland and his mother was a slave. He remained in slavery until freed by Union forces in 1863 during the Civil War. Self-educated by secretly eavesdropping on class lessons at a white school, Lynch learned the photography trade, became a Justice of the Peace, and then was elected to the Mississippi legislature when he was only 26 years old. He will subsequently be elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 1873. His greatest effort was in the long debate in support of the Civil Rights Act of 1875 that banned discrimination in public accommodations. Although, the law was found to be unconstitutional, parts of the act were incorporated into the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (some 90 years later) and the Fair Housing Act.

    plez sez: it remains a mystery to me why so much of the rich history of America is relegated to the far reaches of our collective memories. to many, the Civil Rights Movement began in 1963, with King's "I Have a Dream Speech" and ended in 1968 with his assassination. who would know that the quest for freedom and true equality stretches back to the last shots of the Civil War, and the voices for equality from long ago echo to this day?

    the history of Black people in America IS the history of America! John R. Lynch was born 160 years ago today.

    "If ya don't know, now ya know...!" - The Notorious B.I.G.

    Saturday, September 08, 2007

    Georgia Tech - The Motivator

    This is Georgia Tech Chaplain Derrick Moore's pre-game speech before the Notre Dame game in South Bend on September 1, 2007.

    The Yellow Jackets went out and crushed the Fighting Irish 33-3.

    plez sez: he must've had a similar speech before Tech's home opener against the Samford University Bulldogs today, because Tech went out and demolished the Samford Bulldogs 69-14! The score was 45-0 at halftime.

    all together now... I'm a Ramblin' Wreck from Georgia Tech and a helluva engineer!

    Hat Tip: Georgia Tech Sports Blog for the YouTube Video.

    Thursday, September 06, 2007

    Georgia's Voter ID Law Upheld in Court

    The fight to overturn Georgia's Photo Voter ID Law has been raging since it was passed in 2006. Civil rights groups, most notably the NAACP and the League of Women Voters of Georgia, have decried the law. In an article on August 23, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports that these groups are "claiming that [the photo voter id law] creates an unnecessary extra step for people [to exercise] their right to vote. The groups claim that minorities, the elderly, poor and disabled are especially affected because of the likelihood they either do not possess a valid photo ID or would have difficulty getting a free one provided by the state."

    Excerpts from the August 23, 2007 article follow:
    [L]awyers for those groups tried to show that the state's program to educate voters on the change - voters previously could show non-photo ID or just sign a statement swearing to their identity - has been insufficient, particularly in targeting the people most likely to lack photo ID. Plaintiff's lawyers also were critical of the state's decision to not target certain groups, such as African-Americans, in their advertising efforts, even though blacks have historically been discriminated against, particularly in the South.

    State officials contend they have embarked on a multifaceted campaign that includes mailers, radio advertisements, automated telephone calls, brochures and other means to spread the word about the photo ID requirement before local elections in 23 Georgia counties on September 18, 2007.

    Lawyers for the plaintiffs attempted to poke holes in the educational campaign. They presented a literacy expert, Georgia State University professor Sheryl Gowen, who testified that the letters were written on a 12th-grade level, making it difficult for more than half of the state's population to read. That's critical, lawyers contend, because many of the people who lack a photo ID are likely to be less educated, possibly making it difficult for them to comprehend the letter.
    On Thursday, September 6, 2007, U.S. District Judge Harold Murphy threw out the lawsuit that challenged Georgia's Photo Voter ID law. In upcoming elections, voters will have to present a photo ID as proof of identity prior to being able to vote. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports, "the judge ruled that the plaintiffs failed to prove that the 2006 law's photo ID requirement unduly burdens the right to vote. The Georgia State Supreme Court this summer dismissed a similar suit filed in Fulton County Superior Court."

    Read the entire September 6, 2007 AJC article.

    Georgia Photo Voter ID Information

    plez sez: a show of hands, how many of you want anyone casting his/her vote for the next President of the United States if he/she cannot read well enough (i.e. too illiterate) to understand instructions written for a 12th-grade student?

    OK, i know the civil rights crowd will be all over this one about the disenfranchisement of poor and mostly Black voters. i've heard all of the arguments about the jim crow south with its poll taxes and having to count the number of bubbles in a bar of Ivory soap. understanding ALL of that, how is someone who is literate and knowledgeable enough to register to vote, able to find a way to the polls, and able to competently cast a vote, "unduly burdened" with having to secure and present a photo id when they show up at the polls to vote?

    i do not understand the brouhaha over this law, nor how it "turns back the clock" on voting rights. and for that "half" of the state's population that is disenfranchised because they don't are too illiterate to secure a valid photo id... ***expletive removed*** 'em! i can't think of a candidate alive who would realistically be counting on their vote anyway.

    Wednesday, September 05, 2007

    Bloggers' Roundtable: The Coretta Files

    On Wednesday, September 5, 2007, Farai Chideya (NPR Radio host) and a panel of Black bloggers broke down why the FBI kept surveillance on Coretta Scott King after Martin Luther King, Jr.'s death, Fred Thompson entering the presidential campaign, Ireland's opening of an all-black school, and what's on Congress' plate as it returns from summer recess.

    The bloggers are Shay Riley of the blog Booker Rising; Brandon Whitney, who writes the blog Homeland Colors; and Earl Dunovant, who runs the Websites Prometheus 6.

    You can listen to the September 5th NPR segment here.

    plez sez: i have been cross-posted numerous times on Booker Rising, and Brandon is a frequent visitor/contributor to this site from Homeland Colors; so it was nice to finally be able to put a voice with the blogs.

    Monday, September 03, 2007

    Michael Matthews & New York Giants

    “[He] is a guy who came into a situation where we really are in need of depth at that position. He’s demonstrated the ability to play not only tight end, but the move tight end, plus he can take snaps at fullback as well. He’s made himself a versatile player and we’ve been able to take advantage of that. Plus, he plays special teams. So he finds himself in a number of spots here at the end, and the more-you-can-do theory comes to point.”

    - New York Giants Head Coach Tom Coughlin on rookie tight end Michael Matthews, from Georgia Tech, who has made the roster for the upcoming season.

    This quote is found on the NY Giants website.

    plez sez: The evening of the NFL Draft, I posted the scoop that Michael Matthews had joined with the NY Giants as an unsigned free agent. Mike was a 3-year starter as tight end and graduated from Georgia Tech last fall with his degree in Management. Michael was a member of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity at Georgia Tech (the chapter for which I am the alumni advisor) and he is a devoted family man for his wife and two small children. He worked real hard to be in good shape for the NFL combines during the winter and was picked up by the NY Giants at the completion of the draft.

    A focused, intelligent, hard worker, I am really glad that my prediction that Michael Matthews would make the team has come to fruition. The coach's comments about him being able to play several positions (tight end, fullback, and special teams) means that not only did he make the team, but he will be an on-field contributor to the team.

    I'll definitely have my eyes open for #88 when the season opens... I'm wishing Big Mike the best during his first season in the NFL. The Giants come to Atlanta to take on the Falcons on Monday Night Football on October 15, 2007.

    Sunday, September 02, 2007

    Soul Food - College Football Began

    "I can't believe I ate the WHOLE thing."
    a 1970's Alka-Seltzer commercial

    And eat I did... from the "emotional" kickoff in Blacksburg on ESPN (where Virginia Tech sputtered along to a shady win over East Carolina) to Cal's shellacking of Tennessee.

    My previous post garnered some interesting comments, so I decided to respond to them in this post:
  • llr is going to the Southern Heritage Classic in a few weeks.

    It's not just a football game... it's a Battle of the Bands! And llr, you can leave your guns at home.

  • the stepfather of soul wondered if his boss would have a good day on Tuesday because of a Tennessee win on Saturday night.

    You should go into the office early, replace the regular coffee with decaf, and bring some Krispy Kreme donuts... because your boss is still going to be crying "Rocky Top" into that cup of coffee come Tuesday. By my way of thinking, Cal's whuppin' of Tennessee is worse than UT's win over Cal last year! If you can't beat a team of Bay Area wusses, how in the HELL are you gonna compete with Georgia, Florida, and Kentucky for the SEC East... I'm embarrassed for your boss.

  • dave j. said, "It's all Big Ten up here!"

    Can you say Division I-AA Appalachian State?!? How in THE HELL does #5 Michigan lose to a team of guys who couldn't lift the Gatorade container to give their coach an ice water victory bath? How do you let a team from the Southern Conference hang 34 points on you during your home opener?

    As we saw in last year's National Championship Game between Florida and Ohio State... the Big Ten is a JOKE!

  • CAPCity joked that she will see me after the spring thaw.

    As you can see, I'm alive (yet, a bit bloated) and kickin'... I'll be around. I must admit that I am still having a few heart palpitations over Georgia Tech's dismantling of the Fighting (like little girls) Irish to the tune of 33-3. I'm sure those Irish Eyes are bloodshot from all that crying, since they ain't got a prayer with three (count 'em, THREE) nobody QB's!

  • My buddy dave s. thinks that Boston College will win the ACC this year (2007).

    Dave, you need to stick to baseball! The Sox will win the AL East and maybe even limp into the World Series, where they'll get swept by the Mets... you heard it hear first! *smile* Now on to college football, to win the ACC, BC has gotta come down to Atlanta on September 15 and beat my Yellow Jackets under the lights at Bobby Dodd Stadium. IT AIN'T GONNA HAPPEN. Those northeastern cream puffs will not be able to stop the pass AND our stellar running attack... and our defense will hold BC to maybe one touchdown.

    We should've won the ACC last year... we will win it this year. GO JACKETS!

  • Chris Chambers wrote "Are we so wrapped up in the excitement of college football every August that we forget most of these brothers recruited for [these] big schools can't even read, while right wingers are trying to destroy affirmative action and close off opportunities for our REAL students?"

    I'm not a proponent of "dumb jocks." But for some schools, especially the BIG ONES, most of their revenue is generated by a successful football program (to the tune of 100's of millions of dollars. As long as there is a "plantation mentality" where these young men WORK for these universities for meager pay (tuition, books, room and board), we will continue to have these plantations churn out illiterate athletes who don't have the ability to get a college degree.

    And you touch on the other consequence of these actions, the Black male students (such as myself) who are admitted on strong academic credentials are forever branded with the athletic/affirmative action label. I am 6'4" and over 200 lbs., so I must've gone to Georgia Tech on athletic scholarship to play football. WRONG! The last time I strapped on pads was when I played Pee Wee Football. I competed for and won a full academic scholarship from NASA to study electrical engineering. It is unfortunate that we are often measured by other's prejudices rather than our own merits.

    On the flip side, I am guilty of the Fall Euphoria of College Football... and would be very disappointed if I were no longer able to take my family to the stadium on Saturday afternoon and root for my alma mater. I'll be honest, I'm really conflicted on this one.


    On Friday, I peered into my crystal football and came up with some predictions for select games on Saturday. I won't be able to do this every week, but this is a good time to see how my predictions went:
  • (12:00PM, ESPN) East Carolina at #9 Virginia Tech - In an emotional home opener, VT will dismantle the poor East Carolina Pirates.

    VT only scored 2 touchdowns and one was by the defense on an interception. I was a little disappointed at how ESPN milked the massacre for ratings.

  • (3:30PM, NBC) Georgia Tech at Notre Dame - My beloved Yellow Jackets will travel to South Bend and finish what they started in their home opener of a year ago. We let the Funky Irish escape with a slim 14-10 win at the Flats, on Saturday, we will destroy the Irish and send their rebuilding season into disarray. Tech wins 31-14 and the Irish will finally break their 9-year losing streak in post-season bowl games, since they won't be going to one after this season.

    I was more ON than off with this one... Tech won 33-3, with Notre Dame playing everyone but the locker room janitor at QB in the loss. I stand by my prediction that the Irish will not be playing in the post-season.

  • (6:45PM, ESPN2) Oklahoma State at #13 Georgia - The Bulldawgs are hosting an opponent from the Big 12 conference. This will be another opportunity for the SEC to demonstrate its dominance in college football: Georgia wins 24-10.

    The Cowboys were amazingly stout during the first half, but they eventually wilted under the high pressure SEC defense of the Bulldawgs. UGA won 35-14 by holding OK State scoreless in the second half.

  • (7:45PM, ESPN) Kansas State at #18 Auburn - My brother-in-law played for the purple and white Wildcats from the Big 12 conference, we'll see pretty early on why he should've played for a school in the SEC! I expect the Auburn Tigers to take care of business and give the SEC a 2-0 win over Big 12 opponents on Saturday: Auburn wins big 45-14.

    Kansas State hung in there and made a game of it, but they loss to Auburn by a score of 23-13. I am a bit surprised at Auburn's lack of offense.

  • (8:00PM, ABC) #15 Tennessee at #12 California - Loosen your belt for some dessert as this nightcap will be very sweet. UT is heading out west and their starting QB has an injured thumb on his throwing hand, I was expecting an upset at Cal, but I think the Golden Bears will hold off the Volunteers and pull off a close win. Cal wins 24-21. Damn, that warm banana pudding went down good.

    DAMN! I wasn't expecting a West Coast ScoreFest, but Tennessee couldn't keep up with the Golden Bears and lost 45-31. The game was closer than the score indicates, but Cal was able to keep the lead they secured in the first half.

  • (Monday, ESPN) #19 Florida State at Clemson - College football gives the NFL the boot on ESPN's Labor Day version of Monday Night Football in a classic ACC Showdown, pitting father (Bobby Bowden of Florida State) against son (Tommy Bowden of Clemson). Even though, Florida State and Daddy have owned Clemson of late, it is about time for Clemson to make a run at returning to respectability. This is going to be a close one because Florida State is coming off of 2 down years, as well. I expect an old-fashioned southern fried barn burner: Clemson pulls the upset under the lights in Death Valley 31-30.

    This game is tomorrow evening.

    Until next week...