This week will be full of debate on who has the advantage in this week’s Superbowl.  The relative strengths and weakness of the teams involved.  The defensive and offensive matchups, the coaching styles, the various player comments etc etc etc.

While all of these things are very debatable matters there is a question that I want answered.

Why Superbowl XLIX?  Why not Superbowl IL?

The Roman numeral standard is pretty straightforward  I = 1  V=5 X=10 L=50 C=100 D=500 and M= 1000  Thus 8 – XIII  (5 + 1 + 1 + 1)  When the values are in descending order the number are all added.

When you have a letter that is of a lower value preceding a higher one that number is subtracted, Thus XLIX = Ten (X) subtracted from fifty (L) =  40  plus 1 (I) subtracted from Ten (X)9 for Forty Nine.

But hold on if you can subtract the first letter from the second why not use the following system IL instead since IL = one (I) subtracted from fifty (L) thus…49.

You save two whole letters considering that the Roman system can get kind of messy for example 1988 is MCMLXXXVIII why not use that method to save some carving in your marble when you can?  Why wasn’t the year 1999 MIM (1000+ 1 subtracted from 1000) instead of MCMIX  (1000 + 100 subtracted from 1000 plus 1 subtracted from ten)?

Yea this is slightly less important that the scourge of “manspreading” but if the City of New York can invest actual tax dollars into combating that dreaded scourge someone can tell me why I can’t get a Superbowl IL shirt if I wanted one.

Not that I actually want one, after all, it’s not like it’s something actually important…

…like baseball.

By:  Pat Austin

SHREVEPORT — My 23-year old son and I have begun our Oscar watch.

This is an annual tradition for us that we actually began only a couple of years ago. Each year, after the Golden Globe and Oscar nominations come out, we begin watching all the nominated movies we can squeeze in, starting with the Best Picture nominees and then on down the list.  This has turned in to a really fun tradition but let me just say that there were parts in The Wolf of Wall Street that were really awkward watching with your kid, even if he was 22-years old at the time.  At any rate, I do treasure the time we spend together watching the movies and the hours after discussing each one.

And I know, Hollywood is the liberal devil, but sometimes escapism is actually not a bad thing.

This week we hit our first movie of the season:  Whiplash and so here I offer a sort of brief review (with no spoilers!)

I loved this movie.  I knew I would love the soundtrack:  the story line revolves around a music student working to earn a spot as a drummer in a jazz band at a Julliard-type school in the city.  His idol is Buddy Rich.  So, the soundtrack is amazing.

The theme turns on how far must you drive yourself for success?  To the brink of insanity?  Death?  Is greatness only achieved at great cost?  At what point does one simply quit and back away in the name of self-preservation?  What is the responsibility of a teacher and mentor?  How hard do you push?  Do only the strong survive?  At what price greatness?

J. K. Simmons plays the teacher Terence Fletcher; you may know him from Juno or from Law and Order (he was Dr. Skoda). He’s up for a Best Supporting Actor Oscar nomination for his work in this film while the movie is up for Best Film (among other Oscar nods). Simmons has a great face for this role; it’s all angular and edgy – full of unspoken expression.  This has got to be the role of his lifetime.

Because I don’t want to reveal any secrets — and don’t Google too many reviews because several have spoilers – I will stop here, but don’t go see this movie to relax because it’s intense from beginning to end.  It will pull at a range of emotions and leave you with both questions, answers, and a great beat drumming through your head.

 

Pat Austin blogs at And So it Goes in Shreveport.

Carl Von Clausewitz:  War is the continuation of politics by other means.

Abe Lincoln: One matter further, gentlemen. We fight on their level. With trickery, brutality, finality.

Star Trek The Savage Curtain 1968

I’ve got to tell you the more I see of Al Sharpton the more I’m thinking the GOP needs to take lessons from him.

No not in terms of the dishonorable behavior, the race baiting, the tax fraud, the willingness to incite violence and murder to advance his personal wealth and fame. Not even in terms of his highly successful weight loss.

But I’ll tell you one thing, he certainly knows how to keep the pressure on his enemies or as the Oscar business shows even his friends:

The Rev. Al Sharpton was left fuming mad after the Oscars revealed its all-white list of nominees for this year’s Oscar awards on Thursday.

“The movie industry is like the Rocky Mountains, the higher you get, the whiter it gets,” Sharpton quipped in a statement released later in the afternoon.

Sharpton, a critic of the lack of diversity in Hollywood, also announced he was holding an “emergency meeting” next week to address the issue.

“I have called an emergency meeting early next week in Hollywood with the task force to discuss possible action around the Academy Awards,” he said.

Now as you might have guessed from yesterday’s sarcastic post that I don’t think much of his argument, but consider the situation. Sharpton saw an opening and pounced.

Furthermore he made sure that those he was going after felt the pressure to the point where every news station reported on it and the president of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts felt compelled to respond.

True Sharpton’s appeal and pressure is toward a niche market but his move will continue to press his advantage within that niche.

Meanwhile it’s been almost a week since the i93 protest and if you google “i93 democrats” the only piece linking these leftist to the Democrats seems to be mine.

We had a chance to put the left into retreat and not only are we wasting it but we’ve not only given them the chance to create their own spin:

They said they were protesting in solidarity with “Black Lives Matter”, but Boston police commissioner William Evans isn’t so sure. “If lives mattered today, those kids wouldn’t have been out there doing what they did, because they put a lot of lives in danger.”

Evans says these protesters who claimed to be supporting the Black Lives Matter movement were actually hijacking the cause. “This isn’t a normal group that has been operating in the city, I think this is an Occupy Anarchist movement that was hell-bent on causing problems in the name of Black Lives Matter.”

But we’ve given them the chance to take the initiative:

State Rep. Colleen Garry has filed legislation that would make protests like the one that shut down Interstate 93 in both directions Thursday morning a felony.

The Dracut Democrat filed two bills, amending attempted-murder and manslaughter statutes to include “purposefully causing harm to an individual or killing an individual by blocking access to and/or a public highway or roadway.”

“I’m just outraged that people would be that reckless,” Garry told The Sun. “Everyone has a right to protest, but to do that kind of thing in a highway or a roadway? I’m very furious about it, if you can tell.”

Seriously Did we really give the Democrats a chance to do this before us and run from their base? Are we really that stupid, or lazy or both?

I’ll say one thing for Al Sharpton, he may be a crook, an Anti-Semite, and a racist provocateur but he knows how to press an attack and keep the pressure on.

Would that just for a few days the GOP could do the same.

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