And then there were two…

The NFL postseason has come to an end, in a sense, on Sunday with the NFC and AFC Championship games.

For Super Bowl 51, the Atlanta Falcons will take on the New England Patriots for the NFL Championship in Houston, Texas on Feb. 5.

If you are looking for in-depth analysis, you won’t find it here, just a few tidbits and observations.

  • First off, here is the best National Anthem presentation from Sunday (the video is from last week, but it is the same guy):
  • Brett Favre is now in a burgeoning commercial storyline with Buffalo Wild Wings, which you know will be concluded during Super Bowl Sunday (no judgement):
  • Super Bowl 51 will be on FOX, which means the world will have to listen to Joe Buck and Troy Aikman call the game. Buck’s style is just, eh… Aikman’s style in commentary isn’t bad, but he does make Buck look good at times, which is more you can say about Phil Simms’ role with Jim Nantz on CBS.
  • The radio play-by-play teams on Westwood One have been traditionally the best at calling the games. Ian Eagle and Kevin Harlan are really good as PbP men, with Dan Fouts and James Lofton are very good analysts/color commentators. If there was an easier way to link up the radio broadcasts with the TV broadcasts (on mute), I’d love to find it.

As for the games, Matt Ryan may be the NFL MVP at the end of the season and he showed why against Green Bay. For two straight weeks (against Green Bay and Seattle), Ryan and his offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan have dissected the opposing defenses easily. Sunday’s game was tough to watch. Green Bay was never in the game and neutralized a hot Aaron Rodgers, who had to play from behind from the get-go.

New England just keeps rolling on. Another AFC title game in Foxborough, another Patriots victory to clinch a Super Bowl berth. And, ESPN will spend two weeks of mythological magic on the Patriots to hype up the game.

Enjoy the break before the Super Bowl – because that means no more football until August.

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The day after

There was a movie in 1983, a TV movie, called The Day After. At the time, it was a big TV movie event, not as big as Roots, but big enough to warrant a bunch of stories and fear about what life would be like after a nuclear attack.

From Wikipedia: The film postulates a fictional war between NATO forces and the Warsaw Pact that rapidly escalates into a full-scale nuclear exchange between the United States and the Soviet Union. The action itself focuses on the residents of Lawrence, Kansas and Kansas City, Missouri, as well as several family farms situated near nuclear missile silos.

The cast includes JoBeth Williams, Steve Guttenberg, John Cullum, Jason Robards, and John Lithgow.

The one scene I remember without looking at the trailer is someone looking at the mushroom cloud that was forming miles away and getting blinded by the heat/shock wave.

Right now, as I type this on Saturday night/Sunday morning, it is the fresh new era of the Orange Orangutan Administration (aka the Celebrity Apprentice guy before Arnold Schwarzenegger). And all I can recall is a TV movie about the day after a nuclear war between the U.S. and the USSR.

So, take that for what it is – a rare political rant here. In the future, if there is funny to pass along, I will, but very few rants.

Aziz Ansari hosted Saturday Night Live, which is the new favorite show of the Orange Orangutan Administration, and did a great job with the monologue. Below, I’ve also added a trailer from the TV movie.


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Writing is hard

Tough to keep your momentum going when you don’t have much to write about.

So, I’ll see if Twitter posts are able to come up here. I know Instagram does, which is good.

And it looks like it does work. Nice.

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A minor flashback

While watching a bit of postseason football, I scanned Instagram briefly and saw this photo of Johnny Knoxville, of Jackass fame.
And yes, it brought back a few memories.
There were a few times when I lived in Calistoga where I’d take a few days traveling, mostly because I had vacation time I had to use and I didn’t want to just give them up.
On one of those trips, I drove up I-80 past Reno and Sparks and dove down I-95 to Las Vegas – one of the loneliest highways I’ll ever drive. On the best of times, these trips would be frugal affairs, just enough money for gas, food and a place to stay for a day or two.
This, however, turned out to not be one of those best of times. It didn’t come from bad luck or gambling or theft or anything nefarious – I did a poor job of planning.
After a long day of driving, I was sitting in the lobby of Caesar’s Palace. And, the money just didn’t add up. What was supposed to be enough money for gas, food and two nights at one of the cheaper casinos turned into just enough money for gas. Even to this day, I can’t sort out where I miscalculated.
So, a three-day stay in Vegas was now a survival test. Well, no. It would be a one-night survival run before leaving.
Hey, I just got there. I was going to stay for a bit. I walked around the casinos. I sat at the slots to get a free beer or two. I slugged a lot of free water. I talked up a few ladies, but none of them took me in for the night (even for a bit of sleep).
All of the walking and the drive and the stress pretty much wore me out. I fell asleep for a few hours in one of the casino lobbies and was woken up by a security guard asking me to move on.
And, in the morning, I did what Johnny Knoxville did in the picture – I grabbed a bit of breakfast from the room service left out at Caesar’s, where my truck was. I’m not proud, but it worked.
I wouldn’t recommend it to anyone. One lasting sensory memory from that experience is my aversion to ketchup – so much ketchup poured onto eggs and potatoes and even on a streak.
So, the takeaway is this – make sure you count your money to survive a trip and never, ever put ketchup on a steak.

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A very special episode, er… post

Nothing special, really.
Just a chance to try this again.

Pregame before the Seattle-Detroit playoff game on Saturday.

A photo posted by Rob B (@robrvr) on Jan 8, 2017 at 10:32am PST

Rainy day in the #NapaValley and all points beyond.

A video posted by Castello di Amorosa (@thecastello) on Jan 7, 2017 at 12:27pm PST

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You just need a little bit of help.

Sometimes, you just need a bit of help. #nationalanthem #badsinging #sorryitissideways

A post shared by Rob B (@robrvr) on


Instagram / National Anthem

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366 Days: The Act We Act (Aug 14)

This poor guy is a blue-ribbon winning pig at the Grays Harbor County Fair in Elma. I saw him on Sunday, really noticed the picture on Tuesday, posted it for posterity. Poor little guy… (Photo credit: RobRVR)

Tuesday, Aug 14 — It has been nearly six weeks since I’ve sat down to write upon this space. It has been a mildly eventful time frame, but only a tiny bit of it has been worth writing about.

The beginning of this summer was marked as an introspective one, a time to sit down and go over the mental notebook and read the tea leaves/writing on the wall/insert clever “see into the future” colloquialism.

OK, really. Nothing really interesting happened over the past several weeks. There was a lot of work, a quick trip to Seattle when the schedule allowed it and this:

*A moment of silence*

There were a lot of little things that happened. Like the top picture. Poor pig has a cock-shaped eyebrow. I didn’t realize I had the picture until I went through them off my phone earlier. Now that’s funny. He needs a name, though…

On Saturday, a quick trip to Seattle for the Seahawks preseason game was a good reset. The game wasn’t that bad for a practice game. Downtown, especially in Pioneer Square, was lively. You saw a lot of interesting people and ticket scalpers for the game on every block. Every bit of the street corners were used to hawk their wares:

The free market at work in Seattle. Supply (extra tickets to the Seattle-Tennessee preseason football game at CenturyLink Field) met demand (fans looking to get in) on a street corner in Pioneer Square on Saturday. (Photo credit: RobRVR)

Also, I saw a walking bottle of Rainier beer. The beer’s handler was a cutie, but I did a poor job of getting a picture of the two. (Out of focus) With that in mind, visit Restore The

An out of focus shot of a Rainier bottle handler and her bottle in Pioneer Square on Saturday. Sorry about that, but I had to post my mistakes sometimes, too. (Photo credit: RobRVR)

I have hundreds of shots of Qwest Field/Century Link Field in my archives that I could put any of them down and call them from Saturday, but I won’t. I’ll try to get a shot or three from different vantage spots over the season.

So, for now, that’s all.

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