Electoral Count Update

I had a prediction from July 28 of this year that the Electoral would be Bush 278/Kerry 260. Tonight, I make my final prediction. It’s just a slight change: Bush 279/Kerry 259. We’ll see just how close I get and just how close the election will be very soon.

I must add that almost nothing will surprise be concerning the outcome of this election. If Bush were to pull ahead in a few of the big battle-ground states it could look like a blow-out. Likewise, Kerry could win Florida and probably the election along with it.

You’ve heard it said already, I’m sure, that this election turns on voter turn-out. This is certainly true. Traditionally, the folks who don’t typically come out to vote would vote Democrat. If these voters do turn out in large numbers, Kerry is likely to win. And, the demographics in general are shifting. In the next two elections, things will look very different than they do now as far as both parties taking voting blocs for granted. If the Republicans can’t make inroads into the minority groups they will have an increasingly tough time getting the White House. I think they can do it, but it’s by no means certain.

Someone commented to me the other day that “this is the way elections are going to be from now on. Close and contested by lawyers.” I don’t think so. 2000 and 2004 are unusual cases. I’ve said many times that George W shouldn’t have won in 2000. I have also said that the reason he did win is because of Bill Clinton. If Clinton keeps his zipper zipped, Gore wins in 2000. Likewise, if we were not in Iraq right now, Bush wins this election easily. But, Iraq is a unique situation and one we’re not likely to see repeated in the future.

It was written in the stars. Or in this case; the moon

Tonight, the curse was lifted. I’m still in a state of stunned disbelief. The Cardinals couldn’t even win one single game! Unbelievable!

But after the blood-letting of a young man in Boston and then tonight a lunar eclipse, the Babe lifted his curse. There’s no other explanation for a team that won 105 games during the regular season to be swept in the World Series. It just doesn’t make any sense.

Why not us?…say the Cardinals

Now it’s the Cardinal’s turn to ask, “Why not us?” They’re down two games to zero as the Series heads to Busch Stadium for game 3 on Tuesday night. By the way, this is likely the last World Series game that Busch Stadium will see. The new Busch Stadium is being built right behind the old one. “But wait,” you out-of-towners are thinking, “isn’t Highway 40 right behind Busch Stadium?” Yes, it is. And if you’re sitting in the top rows of the new ballpark you’ll be able to wave to the cars as they drive by. In the picture from the link to the new stadium, that’s Hwy 40 in the lower left corner. And another thing, does every single new building in downtown St. Louis have to have a red-brick facade? Don’t get me wrong, I love the red-brick homes and old buildings…that’s great; but the Edward Jones Dome and now the new Stadium?

I think Historical Preservations get hung up on what they perceive as a romantic past. Do they realize that craftsmen and artisans who built this stuff only used what was available to them for a fair price or what the market would bear? Preservation is a luxury, though. I guess if you can afford it, why not? There’s always conflicts down here in Carondelet between the social service folks who want to rehab old places for low-income families to live and the preservationists who insist on restoring the original architecture, fixtures, etc. It all come down to money…who’s got the money to do the rehabing that you want? Like I said, It’s a luxury. Life goes on.

Why not us?

Curt Schilling, the great Boston Red Sox pitcher sported a t-shirt with these three words: “Why not us?” And, after winning game six to force a game seven when everyone thought they were out of it, we’re all thinking, “no reason, really.”

Meanwhile the Cardinals now have to win both of the last two games back here in St. Louis. I knew the Astros were going to be trouble. We’re keeping our fingers crossed for a Boston/St. Louis World Series.

While being interviewed after tonight’s game, Curt Schilling said something like, “In game I tried to do it myself and you see how that turned out. [they lost] Tonight, it was God. I had God with me.”

That reminded me of something that came up during Sunday School last Sunday. One of the guys is thinking of buying a hot-air balloon and take up the sport/hobby seriously. He mentioned that he was going to put in big letters on the balloon: “Jesus Saves.” Someone else commented that he thought that trivialized God and Jesus. He threw in athletes always thanking God for them winning the game as another example of how we trivialize God.

I know how both of them feel. Let me explain.

You can’t really trivialize God, but you could also spend all day thanking God for every single thing. You should strive for a worshipfull life; one in which you recognize and acknowledge all that God has given you. And it wouldn’t hurt to thank Him every day; when you get up or when you eat. But what about thanking Him for a winning baseball game?

Why not? He can handle it. He can handle our trivial problems as well as the big ones. I learned long ago not to refrain from asking God “stupid questions.” In the end, it really doesn’t matter what you ask, because all you really want is to do His will. The prayers are always framed in that manner. “If it is your will…” Most Christians I know would gladly do anything once convinced that it is indeed God’s will. The challenge for most of us is listening to the answer. Let’s say I pray, “God, if it’s your will, get me this job.” God could answer, “Yes,” and you get your job. He could answer, “No,” and you don’t get it. He could also answer, “Would you quit bugging me about the job and pay attention!”

Are you listening to the answer? that’s the question.

America: Land of Choice

My fellow Americans; tonight St. Louis had a choice to make. And I ask each and every one of you to remember in these times that not every city is so fortunate to have this choice. But, we did. Great men have gone before us; pioneers of their day striving, sometimes painfully, to win this choice. This land is your land and this land is my land, but one thing for sure is this: you learned something about yourself tonight. By the choice you made, we can see into your soul just a little better than before.

How did you choose? Which did you choose? Why did you choose? Did you let your wife touch the remote?

No, a women does not have the sensitivity to handle this job. “Why is the coach taking that nice young man out of the game?” she asks. “It’s OK,” you respond, “we can watch the debate for a few minutes.”

In St. Louis tonight, I’ll bet there weren’t too many debates on what to watch. The Cardinals win game one 10 to 7.

Cards and the Astros

Well, it was bound to happen. The Houston Astros, with their first ever post-season victory, will come to Busch Stadium Wednesday night for the second round of the playoffs. The Cardinals should be able to beat them. In fact, the Cardinals should be able to beat everybody this year. The first game as I said will be Wednesday night here in St. Louis, the same night as the third and last Presidential Debate.

Will anyone be sorry when this campaigning and election is over?

Remember my prediction from a while back? I said Bush would win with 278 electoral votes to Kerry’s 260. That’s a close race, but it could be even closer. And guess what, it could come down to Florida again! Don’t worry though, there’s lawyers from both sides already there ready to pounce on it.

I know I’ve been pretty boring lately. I’ve been watching the Baseball games and the debates and yada yada yada. If the Cardinals win the World Series, I promise I’ll be in better mood. Of course, the World Series is played right before Election Day. If the Cardinals and Bush lose, I may never get out of bed again.

Baseball and life

I was watching the 2nd game of the National League Play-offs tonight when Emily cracked, “Who could like baseball?” And when that didn’t work, she tried, “I can’t believe you like baseball better than Football.” She was trying to get me to turn the channel to E.R. and I wasn’t budging. But, that’s when it hit me, she wasn’t around during the days when I couldn’t be separated from a baseball game. She wasn’t there during the ’80′s to hear me yelling out in the middle of a grocery store, “Holy Crap!” as I listened over the headphones to Ozzie Smith steal home. She didn’t grow up in a house with Jack Buck’s voice drifting up from the radio as her dad watched the game on TV with the sound turned down. Like my father, I loved Baseball; but when the last player’s strike hit, I turned it off. Until now.

It was in the fall of 1982; I began courting Annette, and the Cardinals won the World Series. I remember the players from that team better than I remember who was at the wedding. Keith Herndadez, Tommy Herr, Ozzie Smith and Ken Oberkfell on the in-field. Lonnie Smith, George Hendrick and Willie McGee in the Outfield. Darrell Porter was behind the plate and Joaquin Andujar, Bob Forsch and Bruce Sutter were the pitchers of note.

They would play in two more World Series, once in 1985 and again in1987, losing both. Many people feel that the ’85 team was the best. But after the strike that ended the ’94 season, I just didn’t care any more. My dad has kept the faith through these years, but I confess to being a more fair-weather fan. But I’m ready now! This is a great team we expect them to go all the way and meet Joe Torre and the Yankees in the World Series.

Gordo wins the X-Prize

Gordon Cooper, last of the Mercury 7 to lift into space passed away Monday at the age of 77. He was among a group from a day gone by when the space race meant a life or death competition with the U.S.S.R. For those of you who lived through it, (I was just a kid) you may remember him as the “cocky” one. His famous line, immortalized in the book and the movie “The Right Stuff” was, when asked, “who’s the best test pilot you’ve ever met?”, he responded, “You’re lookin’ at him.”

How fitting that the day after he died, SpaceShipOne wins the $10 Million X Prize by making a 2nd trip into space, thereby (some think) launching space tourism. What’s so special about this SpaceShipOne? After all, it flew, just barely, into space and then came right back down. Gordon Cooper did that 40 years ago!

Well, again I didn’t get picked for a jury this week. They thanked us and sent us home. I don’t think they like me; I’ve reported for jury duty at least six times and I’ve been on exactly one jury. I did meet a very nice guy while there and managed to spend the better part of Monday and Tuesday with him. Though quite a bit younger than me, we never ran out of things to talk about, though most of it was Church and Bible stuff. I went to lunch with him and his wife on Monday and she was just as nice as he was. They have a baby due December 26! We exchanged emails and I hope to see them both again sometime.

The Cardinals beat up on the Dodgers this afternoon. I don’t think they’ll give us any trouble; it’s the Astros we have to look out for.

The Vice-Presidential Debates just finished and it was pretty much what I expected. Cheney was his usual staid, even toned self and Edwards came out swinging and in his closing argument, I mean statement, I felt like I was on a jury. That kind of made up for not being able to serve on a real jury so I felt better. I don’t think this debate will have any effect on the race at all, and as I mentioned in an earlier entry, the race has tightened up with Bush ahead by a few points.