Archive for March, 2010

What Are The Odds?

March 31, 2010

Well, it should come as no surprise that the Duke Blue Devils are the “odds-on” favorite for winning the NCAA Championship (according to Las Vegas Sports Consultants) and that Michigan State is the longshot!  But, this is March . . . Madness rules! Based upon their season (especially the ending) and their seeding in the tournament, Michigan State wasn’t even picked to make the Sweet Sixteen, but yet here they are in the Final Four. And, Butler, the true Cinderella this year, playing in their home town is considered the favorite over the Spartans. What are the odds of that! So, it would appear that a couple of teams have already beaten the odds . . . time will tell. One thing is for sure, one of these “underdogs” WILL be playing in the final. So, fasten your seatbelt and get ready for a wild ride.

Here’s the rundown on some of the numbers . . .
Duke is a 7-5 favorite to win the title, and a 2.5 point favorite to beat West Virginia.
Duke or West Virginia is favored over Butler or Michigan State.
Butler is listed as 5-2 odds of winning the title and is a 1.5 point favorite over Michigan State.
West Virginia is listed at 2-1.
And Michigan State is listed at 17-5.

Go Green!

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The Slightest Hesitation!

March 30, 2010

Here’s the latest piece of glass art that I’ve added to my collection.  This one was acquired while on a recent trip to Fairhope, Alabama.  I first laid eyes on this one during our first pass of the booths (this particular Arts & Crafts Festival had over 250 vendors/booths) on our initial visit to the show.  I had originally intended to wait until the end of the next day to actually purchase the piece, but as we were making a second pass through some of the booths, a friend that I was with had noticed that two of the pieces that she had had her eye on earlier in the day were no longer available and had been sold. 

So, not wanting to have this treasure “escape,” I wasted no more time “thinking” about purchasing and just took the plunge.  I certainly have no regrets (I rarely do).  The artist, Randy L. Kuntz, from Holland, Ohio, is masterful in what he can do with glass — this piece is simply gorgeous.

The Madness Continues!

March 29, 2010

And then there were four . . . the Final Four!  Two weeks ago, there were sixty-five teams dreaming of reaching the Final Four.  The lucky survivors: Butler University (#5 seed), the University of West Virginia (#2 seed), Duke University(the only remaining #1 seed), and Michigan State University (#5 seed).  I must admit that I’ve been very entertained this year with all of the great games.  There have been close, hard fought, back and forth battles; there have been overtime games; and there has even been an occasional buzzer-beater; there have been more upsets or underdog wins than usual as well.  This is what makes college basketball so interesting and enjoyable . . . you just never know what is going to happen (and anything can).

So, congratulations to the remaining four . . . and we’ll see how things shake out next weekend in Indianapolis.  Go Green!  Good luck against Butler next Friday!

Life is like . . . !

March 28, 2010

I have run across a couple of really great quotations (one is an older one that I have posted before) that bear repeating. And, I’m even going to throw in some definitions of “life” from my cynic’s dictionary. Enjoy.

“Life is like riding a bicycle.  To keep your balance, you must keep moving.”  (Albert Einstein)

“Life is like a piano, what you get out of it depends upon how you play it.”  (Unknown)

“I think of life as a good book. The further you get into it, the more it begins to make sense.”   ( Harold S. Kushner)

And from the Cynic’s Dictionary . . .

Life is . . . “post natal depression.”  (Nigel Rees), and . . . “a sexually transmitted disease — and the mortality rate is 100%.”  (R. D. Laing)

From Sweet to Elite!

March 27, 2010

This time of year, you just never know how long the winning is going to last.  For the Michigan State Spartans (#5 seed), they have lived to play another day by defeating Northern Iowa (#9 seed) for a spot in the Elite Eight.  Next up, the University of Tennessee Volunteers (#6 seed) on Sunday!  Go Green!

The rest of the Elite Eight includes:

Baylor University (#3)
Butler University (#5)
Duke University (#1)
Kansas State University (#2)
University of Kentucky (#1)
University of West Virginia (#2)

Who will make it to the Final Four?  Time will tell.

Change, Just Do It!

March 26, 2010

I’ve been struggling this week with seemingly every facet of my life (home, work, volunteer, play).  I’ve had no energy, I’ve been easily distracted, I’ve been totally overwhelmed, and I’ve been mildly depressed.  Whoa!   So, when I ran across this quotation, it was a major eye-opener.  I didn’t really understand exactly what was happening (or why I was feeling this general malaise), but this phrase stated it so succinctly that I experienced a real “aha” moment.

“If we do not change our direction, we are likely to end up where we are headed.”  — Chinese Proverb.

Perhaps it is time for me to change directions. 

Or should I be “staying the course?”  http://www.bestwayout.com/

International Travel?

March 25, 2010

If I were to mention some of the cities that I visited while on my Spring Break, you may get the false impression that I had spent the entire time in Europe.

Yes, I visited Paris . . . and Moscow . . . and even Transylvania . . . but I never left the good old United States of America. 

As luck would have it, they were all either on the way to or from Alabama.  On the way south, I drove through Moscow and Transylvania (both in Louisiana) and on the way back north, I drove through Paris (Texas).  And who knows what other states may lay claim to other famous cities from around the world?  I’m sure there are many.  So go ahead, have that European vacation you have always been wanting without even going abroad.  It might not be quite as romantic, but it could be a lot of fun exploring the possibilities.

Are You a Morning Person?

March 24, 2010

I certainly would classify myself as a “morning person.”  But I don’t seem to have any difficulty being a “night owl” either.  Is this a blessing or a curse?  Probably a curse . . . it means that I stay up way too late and get up way too early which results in not getting enough sleep.  Somehow, I manage to survive.  And speaking of mornings, I ran across a couple of new vocabulary words that are somehow associated with morning.  Enjoy!

matutinal

\muh-TOOT-n-uhl\ , adjective;  

1.  Relating to or occurring in the morning; early.

aubade

\oh-BAHD\ , noun;
 
1.  A song or poem greeting the dawn; also, a composition suggestive of morning.

Found . . . in Alabama!

March 23, 2010

Intense Moments

Having spent my Spring Break in Fairhope, Alabama (just across the bay from Mobile), while there was an Arts & Crafts Festival (the 58th Annual) going on, I was doomed from the start. I did manage to restrain myself fairly well by purchasing only two works of art:  this original oil painting entitled “Intense Moments,” and a unique handblown glass vase (I’ll blog a picture of it in the not too distant future).

And the irony, this one was actually not part of the festival, but rather, from one of the Fairhope art galleries — I ended up supporting a local artist!

Despite this local find, I also made an extensive list and collected business cards from many of the displaying artists — so many talented and artistic people, so little wall space.  Alas!

How “Sweet” It Is!

March 22, 2010

The first weekend has come to an end and the field has been reduced from 64 teams to 16; the Sweet Sixteen.  Congratulations to all the teams that have survived this first weekend.  As we continue down the Road to the Final Four, who knows what next weekend will bring.  One thing is for sure, there will be plenty of exciting college basketball. Next up for the Spartans, Northern Iowa who defeated the overall #1 seed Kansas on Saturday . . . Go Green!

Here are the sixteen (with their seeding in parentheses).

Duke (1)
Kentucky (1)
Syracuse (1)
Kansas State (2)
Ohio State (2)
West Virginia (2)
Baylor (3)
Purdue (4)
Butler (5)
Michigan State (5)
Tennessee (6)
Xavier (6)
Northern Iowa (9)
St. Mary’s (10)
Washington (11)
Cornell (12)