RIP Jim Bogan (1939 – 2021)

Was saddened by the death of my Father-in-Law, James D. Bogan, who passed away at home on Wednesday, April 14th. It has taken me some time to write this, as I have been at a loss for words to describe how I feel, and what to say about him. He was a great man and proud father and grandfather to my wife and daughter, as well as the rest of his family. When we moved into our house (which is just a 5 min drive to his house), I remember thinking that this could be crazy, living so close to my in-laws. Boy was I wrong. Having him so close was a godsend, as he was always around to help save us from the many issues that come up from owning a house (flooded basement, frozen pipes,…) He was a great handyman, with all the right tools, and helped to renovate the office I am sitting in writing this post, as well as our main living room.

He left me, his oldest daughter (my wife), and granddaughter (my daughter) with great memories, like coming over Christmas morning to watch us open presents, or coming to over to dinner with my mother-in-law of Sundays (sitting out on our back deck talking about the things he enjoyed)

He loved to travel, and once he retired, traveled to cool places like Russia, Australia, New Zealand, and Chile. Pictures he took hang on the walls of his house, and are always fun to look at.

Going over to his house for family gatherings (Holidays, Birthdays) was always fun and you could tell he really enjoyed having his family closed by and able to come over. A very generous person, he had time-shares in Hilton Head Island, SC, where we he would invite us all to go for vacation.

He loved working outside in the summer, driving his tractor around, and making sure things always looked their best. In the winter, he enjoyed making fires in his custom built fire place, where he could sit back and relax and watch Jeopardy (He was super smart, and got most of the answers correct).

Its still hard to imagine the world without him, but life does go on, and I’m sure he would want everybody to continue on their life’s journey

Rest in Peace – You will be missed

James D. Bogan (1939 – 2021)

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Baseball is back and what its like to be a Mets Fan

Baseball is back for 2021 and they are going to play the standard 162 games (unlike the 60 games they played last season due to covid-19). Things are getting betted as more and more people are getting vaccinated, and most places are respecting lock down rules to try and stop the virus from spreading as we get closer and closer to heard immunity. Bu despite all the protocols that MLB put in place, the Mets opening series against the Washington Nationals was cancelled due to positive covid-19 tests within the Washington Organization. The Mets had to wait until last night to start their season against the Philadelphia Phillies, and in true Mets fashion, the waisted another start from Jacob DeGrom and found a way to lose the game. I know its just one game, and there are still 161 games left to play, but the Mets have followed the same pattern the past 5 years, and then you look and its September, The Mets are 20 game out of 1st place and the Mets fans are talking about what could have been. Hopefully they can get things changed this year and having a new owner who has money and wants to win helps.

But for the Mets to be successful, they 1st need to come up with a identity. Are they going to scare teams with their pitching, or are they going to rely on their offense. If they want to be known for their pitching, then they need to change their approach, especially with Jacob DeGrom. He needs to be a true ace that scares other teams. He has the talent to do this, so its up to management and the Manger to use him the best way they can. You can’t be taking him out after 6 inning regardless how its pitching and then saying he’s an all time great. Talk is cheap. DeGrom needs to pitch as much as possible and make the other teams believe they have no chance to win the game before it even starts.

Instead Bryce Harper of the Phillies came out and said they were thrilled when DeGrom left the game. The Phillies basically figured they could hang around for 6 innings and then win against the Mets bullpen. They didn’t fear facing DeGrom like they should and this is something that needs to change. The good team and great players intimidate their opponents. Make them feel that the game is over before it even starts. But if they know DeGrom will be out after 6 innings no matter what, they can just sit back and wait.

Not that last nights loss was all on DeGrom. The Mets had several opportunities to put the game away, but seem to be relying to much on stats and pre-determined moves then getting a feel for the actual game. If you are just going to go by a script and have everything mapped out before the game, then just go play MLB 21 on the computer, and sit back and watch.

This is an issue with lots of teams, and it seems crazy to me that they keep on doing the same things, making the same moves based on there so called experts, and keep on losing. Then they blame it on the talent they have. Its like a corporation that has a manager or department with extremely high turnover, but keeps blaming things on the employees that keep leaving, and do not look inward and think what they can do better.

The Chicago White Sox have been saying they have one of the best statistical departments. See its really done them well – Taking away last season, here are there recent win totals – 2016 (78), 2017 (67), 2018 (67), 2019 (72). Or the Los Angeles Angels, with the consensuses best player in baseball Mike Trout, and future Hall of Famer Albert Pujoles – 2016 (74), 2017 (80), 2018 (80), 2019 (72). These teams, as well as several others (and I will include the Mets) really need to sit back and think of what they are doing is really the best, or do they need to change some of their philosophies if they want to be a winning organization. Maybe forget about some of the stats, don’t talk so much about moral victories, and instead get their players to believe in themselves and their talent and intermediate their opponents.

I asked a friend of mine the other day if Francisco Lindor (who just signed a 10 year 341 Million Dollar contract with the Mets) would rather hit over .300, make 5+ All-Star Games, and win 2 MVPs over the next 10 years, but only make the play-offs 1 or 2 times and lose early, or hit .260, make 1 All Star Game, finish 3rd or 4th in the MVP, but win 2 or 3 World Series. I’m sure he would want to win the World Series more than have the Hall of Fame stats, but sometimes it feels that team would rather tout a players stats then actually win games.

Personally I would rather have my team be good and make the play-offs this season, then to say Jacob DeGrom won his 3rd Cy Young Award, Francisco Lindor won the MVP, and Pete Alonso hit 50 HR, but the Mets finished 3rd in the division and missed the play-offs.

All this came to my mind after the Mets played 1 Game. That is what makes baseball the best of the major sports

Andy

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Man builds video rental store in his basement

If you are as old as me, you have to remember going to the video rental store with friends to pick out a movie to watch. We would spend pat of our evening walking around the store, looking at all the boxes to try and find a movies everybody could agree upon. The stores were usually set up with different sections (Comedy, Drama, Horror, ..) to help, but it was always a chore to find that one movie that nobody had seen before, and all wanted to see. Sometimes we ended up choosing 2 or 3 different movies, since the popular ones already rented. Some times it could take hours and it would be 9:00 PM or 10:00 PM by the time we got home and started watching the movie

Thought of this as I watched a segment on Jimmy Kimmel. (Skip to the 7:00 minute mark)

This guy must of loved the whole video store experience because he decided to build his own video store in his basement during the covid-19 Pandemic. He did a great job, and it looks like he has a better selection the our local store ever had.

Like when he said he has over 50 copies of Forrest Gump. Also liked that he set up a section just for Jimmy Kimmel.

Good for him as It always amazes me of the creative things people can do when they have a passion for something.

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Average Andy Non-Sports Card Collecting Video

Here is a video made of me talking about the hobby of Non-Sport Card Collecting. I talk about the hobby, and show some of the cards I have collected over the years.

This video was done as a school project by my daughter

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Survivor is coming back, plus what I have been doing

Saw that they have started work on the next few seasons Survivor (Seasons 41 and 42), after production was shut down for a year due to the Covid-19 Pandemic. Also saw that the CBS casting website was actually updated and they are taking applications for Seasons 43. As I’ve done for the pat 20 years, I will be putting together another audition video soon and submitting it to the CBS Survivor Casting department. Over the yeas, I have submitted VHS video tapes and DVDs, uploaded video to the CBS Site, and even attended an open casting call. Eventually somebody involved with Survivor casting will realize that I would be a great addition to the cast of an upcoming season of Survivor.

I think some of the videos I have submitted are really good and continue to hope that somebody who watches them will reach out and give me a chance. Once they are able to meet and talk to me, they will be able to see what I would bring to the show.

In the mean time, I am looking forward to the preview of Season 41 (hopefully in the fall) and will continue to watch and enjoy Survivor as long as its on

In other news, I always been a avid card collector (starting way back with TOPPS baseball cards when I was a kid, and then shifting to Non-Sports Cards (Cards based on Movies / TV) when Topps put out a set of cards for the 1st Star Wars Movie back in 1978. I have been collecting ever since, and have built up a pretty nice collection. I have also made friends with other collectors through chat rooms and attending the Philly Non-Sports Card Show twice a year. Unfortunately the last few shows were cancelled due to the Pandemic, but hoping there will be a show this fall as more people get vaccinated and things start to open up. During the down time, I got back into collecting baseball cards, and have become kind of obsesses with the 2021 TOPPS Series One card (epically the Yellow Walgreens cards). I never realized how many Walgreens Pharmacies there were until I started visiting them looking for packs of cards with the exclusive cards. At last count I have checked at least 6 Walgreens near my home. I have been able to find some cards, but most either are sold out, or are not carrying them. I have also been to 5 Walmarts and 3 Targets looking for 2021 Cards and have been lucky enough to find a few boxes. The chase to find cards has become almost as fun as actually collecting. I know I could always but cards on-line, but where’s the fun in that.

I have also been watching videos of Sudoku solves on the You Tube Channel “Cracking the Cryptic”. I fine if both fascinating and relaxing to watch Simon Anthony solve Sudoku videos. It usually take 45min to 1 hour for a solve, and is highly recommenced to anybody who enjoys solving the daily sudoku puzzles in the newspaper (Yes, I still get a newspaper delivered each day). Below is a link – Check it out, and subscribe to the channel for daily videos


Baseball is back. The MLB Season starts this Thursday (April 1st, 2021) and it looks like it will be a full 162 Game schedule (as apposed to the shortened 60 game schedule of 2020). Hopefully there are no issues with Corvid and the season plays out without any major issues. The Mets made some moved bringing in catcher Brian McCann and superstar shortstop Francisco Lindor. They also will be getting Marcus Stroman back after he sat out last year. They still have Jacob DeGrom as there number 1 starter, and if Pete Alonso can have a bounce back year, the Mets should be a decent team.

Looking forward to having games on during the week, and will be fun to watch

In other sports, I did not due to well in the NCAA Basketball Pools I entered this year (which is really nothing new). I will admit I did not watch much college basketball this season and did not really have much information to go with.

I’m currently between jobs as my latest contract (Data Retention Engineer with Bloomberg) has come to and end, so I will be looking and thinking of what to do for the next chapter of my life. I should have some more free time to write more as it does help to get the creative juices flowing and help me to stay productive and clear my mind

Stay safe and get vaccinated if your eligible

More to come

Average Andy

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George Segal (1934-2021)

Wonder why some actors make you think of a particular movie just by  hearing there name.  When I think of George Segal, I immediacy think of the movie “Rollercoaster”.    I must have watched if 50 times on  HBO as a kid.  Its one  of those moves that just pops into my mind once in a while, and then I check to see if its available somewhere on-demand.   I might have to check today as George Segal has passed away at the age of 87     

George Segal (1934-2021)

I had just seen him in a small roll in the John Cusack movie “2012”.   Would have probably ended up watching Rollercoaster in the coming weeks.   Now I most defiantly will

RIP George Segal.  You will  be missed

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Another sad day – RIP Yaphet Kotto

Sad to see the passing of actor Yaphet Kotto. Liked him in “Alien” and in the James Bond Movie “Live and Let Die”. Once of those recognizable actors who played great characters over the years

He did sign a few cards for Rittenhouse including one for James Bonds “Live and Let Die”. Mad I never picked up one of his auto cards. Will defiantly look for one at the next card show I attend (Hopefully in the fall as more people get vaccinated and venues start opening up. Until then RIP Yaphet Kotto. You will be missed.

I have some free time, and should be able to update my blog more in the future

Andy

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RIP Dustin Diamond

Dustin Diamond who played screech in “Saved By The Bell” has passed away of cancer. It’s much to young for him to pass and it makes me sad. RIP Dustin Diamond, you will be be missed.

Dustin Diamond (1977 – 2021)

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The Brady Bunch

Just came across this as I was going down the youtube rabbit hole

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Out with 2020 and in with 2021

Here are some quick thought to close out 2020

We lost another part of the Star Wars family as Jeremy Bulloch, who played Boba Fett, died on December 18th at the age of 75. One of the few Star Wars actors I met at convention years ago. Jeremy Bullock (Boba Fett) has become an iconic part of the Star Wars Universe and will be missed

Jeremy Bulloch (1945 -2020)

Congratulations to Will Jardell and James Wallington as the winners of The Amazing Race Season 32. It was a really good season, and I am happy for them to be the winners. Although the tight alliance between the top 3 team did eliminate some of the excitement and drama, the team played within the rules and it got them to the final 3.

The Amazing Race 32 Winners

Sad to see that Singer Leslie West passed away at age 75. Best know to me for the song “Mississippi Queen”, I actually saw him play with the band Mountain as part of a triple bill (Triumph / Loudness / Mountain

2020-12-24 12.07.46

Triumph / Mountain / Loudness

Watched the H Natural Live stream last week on You Tube. Was great to see some live music from the lead singer of Marillion (Steve Hogarth (H)). The Band is in the studio working on their next album which should be out sometime in early 2021. Looking forward to this and then the possibility of a US Tour some time in 2022


Going to try and find some time in the next few weeks to catch up on some reading (New books by John Grisham, Ernest Cline, James Patterson) and some music (continue listening to Pink Floyd) and some TV (Going to finish the Mandalorian)

Its been a tough, strange, and very interesting 2020. Hoping things return to some kind of normal in 2021.

Hope everybody is wearing their masks and staying safe,

Have a Very Merry Christmas and a Happy and Joyful New Year

Andy



Average Andy will return in 2021 with more thoughts and observations in 2021


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