March 9, 2019

New York's Reproductive Health Act is Dumb

[Posted by Ted H]

Wow, it has been forever and a day since I last posted. Haven't pounded out anything worthy as of late, so instead of leaving this place to die a slow malnourished death, I figure I'd put up this little essay I wrote back in January about the recent (at the time) law they just passed in New York regarding abortion...

Imagine this in the same vein as my "[blank] of the Dead" deconstructions.


[New York's Reproductive Health Act is Dumb]

Time to educate the ignorant masses about the abortion law NYS just passed. Yes, it's time for another episode of "The Intellectual High Ground" with me, Ted!

Today, we return to the Reproductive Health Act that New York recently passed and we'll debunk the more prevalent defense that people have been using as a shield to the counter argument that this law is unnecessary. We're also going to actually look at what exactly the law states will happen. I won't be reading opinion pieces on this law-I'm actually reading the law as written and analyzing it. I will stray away from my own opinions as much as I can and only go for cold, hard facts as only a Conservative can give it. Some of you may want to dismiss me as you hold your hands over your ears and run for your echo chambers, but for the rest of you looking to actually learn something today, please consider this one of those "Bitter pills to swallow" situations.

Anyway, on with the show...

The paraphrased argument in favor of this law is: This only applies to when the fetus isn't viable or the mother's life is at risk after the 24th week.

Let's break this up a little. We'll start with the viable fetus argument. This part will be short. When a fetus isn't viable at the 25 week mark, an abortion usually isn't recommended because it would be safer to remove it as a birth instead. Healthcare providers tend to advise to what is best for the health of their patient as opposed to whatever their moral or political leanings are. They went to medical school; So when they advise you to deliver that non-viable baby as opposed to aborting it, there's a good reason for it.

Enough of the appetizer though...

The other part of the argument is that the new law protects the life of the mother now. This argument implies that before this law, when week 25 begins, everything goes on lockdown. If your life is in danger, too bad, you'll have to die. Is this true? Let's find out. Glossing over the fact that even the Catholic Church supports an abortion if the pregnancy threatens the mother's life, there is no law where a mother is forced to go through a life threatening pregnancy.

The following law was in effect before the Reproductive Health Act was passed:

"Justifiable Abortion Act"
An abortional act is justifiable when committed upon a female with her consent by a duly licensed physician acting (a) under a reasonable belief that such is necessary to preserve her life, or, (b) within twenty-four weeks from the commencement of her pregnancy. A pregnant female`s commission of an abortional act upon herself is justifiable when she acts upon the advice of a duly licensed physician (1) that such act is necessary to preserve her life, or, (2) within twenty-four weeks from the commencement of her pregnancy. The submission by a female to an abortional act is justifiable when she believes that it is being committed by a duly licensed physician, acting under a reasonable belief that such act is necessary to preserve her life, or, within twenty-four weeks from the commencement of her pregnancy.]

I've often times argued that the language of a law is key. In the case of the law above, there are 2 instances of which an abortion is kosher: either within the first 24 weeks OR if the life of the mother is in danger.

OR, not AND.

That word in there is important. There is a BIG difference. There is no time frame defined on the part that states a life saving abortion is ok, meaning that is has ALWAYS been the law in NYS that you can get an abortion at any time up until the point of birth if it meant saving your life. The Reproductive Health Act does not change this. It suddenly didn't make it legal to save a mother's life. But this law is moot though, because the new law repeals Section 125.05 Subdivision 3.


They needed to add two words to it. Here is what the new law states:


The last part is the important part. It seems almost like a word for word repeat of 125.05 subsection 3 except for the 2 words that end this new law. "Or health" What does that mean? It doesn't mean life threatening because "protect the patient's life" was already explicitly stated prior to the "or health" addition.

This new law didn't suddenly allow abortions for life saving situations, it actually expanded the situations beyond life saving situations to where you can get an abortion...all the way up to point of birth.

The new law also repeals Sections 125.40,.45, .50, .55 and .60 which decriminalizes ANY act that leads to an abortion. Yes, this protects doctors who perform a post-week 24 abortion, but it now also protects anyone who causes an abortion in any capacity. Because unlike 125.05 which got a re-write, those other repeals weren't replaced with anything. It just means that there is no penalty for anything that takes the life of an unborn child.

So that 2-7 years prison sentence a domestic abuser would get from causing his woman to lose her post week 24 child (a class D felony) is no longer an option. Yes, he still gets convicted on other abuse or assault charges, but this isn't the NFL where only the worst penalty on a play gets enforced. The additional 2-7 years vanish. A reduced sentence if you will.

Something else gets repeals with this new law:

[Section 4164 of the New York Public Health Law
"Induced Viable Births"
1. When an abortion is to be performed after the twelfth week of pregnancy it shall be performed only in a hospital and only on an in-patient basis. When an abortion is to be performed after the twentieth week of pregnancy, a physician other than the physician performing the abortion shall be in attendance to take control of and to provide immediate medical care for any live birth that is the result of the abortion. The commissioner of health is authorized to promulgate rules and regulations to insure the health and safety of the mother and the viable child, in such instances.
2. Such child shall be accorded immediate legal protection under the laws of the state of New York, including but not limited to applicable provisions of the social services law, article five of the civil rights law and the penal law.
3. The medical records of all life-sustaining efforts put forth for such a live aborted birth, their failure or success, shall be kept by attending physician. All other vital statistics requirements in the public health law shall be complied with in regard to such aborted child.
4. In the event of the subsequent death of the aborted child, the disposal of the dead body shall be in accordance with the requirements of this chapter.]

That law was repealed. Not replaced or amended. Repealed. In addition to the broadening of who exactly can advise and perform an abortion, NYS has simply loosened the quality standards for abortion in general.

So, in closing...

The Reproductive Health Act does nothing to protect the lives of women that previous laws were not already doing.

All it does is expand the situations and time frame is which women can get an abortion. That time frame being literally any point they want in the pregnancy, and the situation can be literally anything they feel like. "Health of the mother" can be a very, very broadly defined and liberally applied situation.

Thank you for your time. If you have a pure emotional and factually baseless complaint, the line starts to my left.

Everyone else, have a great day!

December 29, 2018

Vampires of Pittsburgh - Strip Club

[Posted by Ted H]

...Yes, we're at a strip club.
...No, we won't be here again...


[Vampires of Pittsburgh - Strip Club]

            The strip club was having a slow night, which made things a gamble. Sometimes the lack of clients made the girls more cutthroat to claim clients for their own, or sometimes the girls resigned their apathy to the clubs atmosphere. Unfortunately the night was shaping up to be the latter. Nick knew better than to panic though. Panic leads to desperation, and strippers tended to avoid the desperate clients, especially in today's day and age.
            One girl was making her way nearby that had caught Nick's eye all night. Dark skin, with smooth legs leading right to an oversized ass that seemed tight and inviting, not to take anything away from her other ample curves. Nick decided now was time to make his play; He leaned back and gave off an angry stoic look, but not too angry. He turned his gaze to slightly ahead of the strippers path so eye contact would seem incidental.
            "Hey baby," she said as she approached, flashing a genuine smile as she helped herself to a seat right in Nick's lap. "Sup," Nick said as he turned his head slightly to her, acting like he had been paying attention to the girl on stage. "You seem pretty lonely over here," the stripper cooed "Want some company?" Nick acted like he was pondering her question. "Sounds like a good idea," he said with a slight grin, which the stripper ate up. She leaned closer to him, her lips practically on his ears and whispered "I could keep you better company in back if you like."
            Nick was ready to close when he noticed Kyle approaching. "Shit," he said under his breath as the man walked over with two beers in hand. "Sup, bitches!" he proclaimed as he offered Nick a beer. "Hey good looking," he then said to the stripper, who Nick could feel was losing interest in the whole situation. "You still trying to get a dance, man?" he asked back to Nick. "He with you?" the stripper asked. "Uhhh..." Nick said.
            "Hey, when you're done with Nick in back, I wouldn't mind some brown sugar," Kyle said before he took a long sip from his bottle. "I don't do white boys," she said as she stood up. "Wait-" Nick tried to salvage. "You boys have fun," the stripper said as she walked off, Nick and Kyle watching her walk away before Nick decided to address what just happened.
            "What the fuck is wrong with you?" Nick said, finally taking the second bottle out of Kyle's hand. "Dude, it's not my fault you're so slow at this," Kyle said as he sat down in the open seat next to Nick so they could both watch the dancer on stage "In the time it took for you to *finally* get that stripper in your lap, I threw money at the main stage, talked to a few girls, took one in the back, had a cigarette out front, tried to get that earlier girl's number, got a couple beers and *still* had time to blue ball you."
            "I hope you get syphilis," Nick said without looking away from the stage.
            "Why are you so picky in strip clubs?"
            "Black strippers are superior."
            "I've seen you with some ugly ass women in my life. You have no standards."
            "Strip clubs are where I can play safe odds. There's always at least one fine ebony at a club every night. I never need to settle when I know a knock out girl is waiting for me when I'm here."
            "You're an idiot."
            "You're a cock block."
            "You cock block me all the fucking time, don't even start."
            The current dancer on stage ended her routine and worked to clean up her clothes and money before the next girl arrived. Nick and Kyle drank in silence until the lights dimmed and the new girl began her routine. "C'mon," Kyle said as he slapped Nick's arm "Let's have some fun." Both men approached the main stage and sat down.
            "Alright gentlemen," the DJ announced over the booming sound system "Time to get out your dollars and show some love, it's Crystal on stage!"
            "I bet she does meth," Kyle said.
            "Man, shut up!" Nick almost had to shout. The music was obnoxious at the main stage.
            "I'm just sayin," Kyle defended "She's lanky and malnourished. Probably took this job to pay for more meth, took the name thinking it was funny and witty."
            "She don't look honky tonk enough."
            "Look at her cheek bones. I even think I see bags under her eyes."
            "Why are you looking at her cheek bones?" Nick demanded just as Crystal pulled off her top to reveal her breasts to a cheering crowd of 6 other men.
            "I bet she's missing teeth."
            "You're full of shit."
            "Hundred bucks says I'm right."
            "You're on."
            Both men shook hands and began cat calling the stripper, trying to elicit a smile. She ignored them for the most part and carried on in her routine, wearing just a small pair of panties. When she hinted she was at the point where they would come off, Kyle leaned forward and shouted towards the stage "Yeah baby, I can't wait anymore! I need to see that *ass*!"
            Crystal winked and gave a slight smile as she began lowering the last shreds of her clothing. Despite her ample nudity, Nick and Kyle were zeroed in on her mouth when she smiled to reveal the unmistakable sight of a few missing teeth. "Fuck," Nick said quickly as Kyle did a fist pump and cheered, Crystal oblivious to the reasoning and took it as appreciation of her naked body.
            "Maybe she does roller derby or hockey or shit like that," Nick reasoned.
            "I'll take my money now, please," Kyle said with a giant grin on his face.
            Nick took a $100 bill from his pocket and practically threw it in Kyle's face. Before he could say anything, Crystal had approached them on the stage and leaned over toward Kyle. "You enjoying yourself, baby?" she asked. "Oh, I am," Kyle said and pulled out a few singles "And you definitely deserve a tip for it."
            Kyle leaned back and lowered the zipper on his fly, then stuffed the money in the opening. "All yours. Only use your mouth though," he said proudly. Crystal took one look at the money in Kyle's crotch and said "Just a few? Honey, I was expecting something bigger in your pants."
            "Oh shit!" Nick yelled before laughing his ass off. Nearby patrons overhearing were laughing too. Some of them even threw more money at the stripper, who herself looked very content with her jab. "Oh, you wanna be cute?" Kyle said as he reached down and tossed aside the singles in his pants. He then held up the $100 bill Nick had just given him, causing all laughter to stop and catching the full attention of not only Crystal, but every stripper who was watching. Kyle then placed the money into his fly opening and asked "That big enough for ya?"
            Just as Crystal was eagerly leaning in to retrieve the money, Kyle held up his hand for her to wait. "Since you're a bit of a smartass," he said as he used his other hand to slowly push the money deeper into his pants "You're gonna have to earn this one." The $100 bill was now barely visible.
            Before Crystal could act though, a man placed his hand on Kyle's shoulder and said "It's time to go." Kyle spun around in his seat, ready to protest. "I didn't do anything wrong yet," he said as he looked up to see that it wasn't a bouncer trying to kick him out. "Fuck off, Dan, we're busy," Nick said as he turned away. "Seriously," Dan said, ignoring Nick "Now."
            "On whose authority?" Kyle asked "Cuz you sure as shit don't outrank me."
            "The entire high council," Dan said as he turned and walked away.
            "Fuuuuuuuck," Nick said as he and Kyle looked at each other.
            "Think he's lying?" Kyle asked.
            "That fucker doesn't lie about work," Nick responded and stood up. Kyle followed suit, unceremoniously removing the $100 bill and casually tossing it onto the stage where Crystal had long since lost interest in him. Both men walked out of the club and onto the street. It had recently rained, leaving the dark street slick and shiny looking. Dan had crossed the street and was waiting under a street light.
            "This couldn't have waited until morning?" Kyle asked as he and Nick joined Dan under the street light. "I just found out myself," Dan responded. He was wearing a black jacket with dark blue trim, black jeans and leather boots. He had long silver hair that he kept tied back tightly. "Backlash contacted me this morning. Specifically said to get you two idiots in the loop as well."
            "How come he never calls us?" Nick asked.
            "Maybe you should update him on the number for your burner phones," Dan responded.
            "Yeah yeah yeah, whatever," Kyle said "So what's the fucking job?"
            "I don't know specifics," Dan said "Just that it's big and we need to get to Pittsburgh."
            "Pittsburgh?" Kyle and Nick asked in unison. "Problem?" Dan asked after being taken aback. "Oh no problem," Kyle said "Except that it's on the fucking other side of the country."
            "Yes, clearly a huge concern for our line of work," Dan said sarcastically.
            "It's not the distance," Nick corrected "It's November. It's fucking cold up there."
            "I'm sorry that not every end of the world scenario can happen in San Diego," Dan reasoned "But too bad. Get your shit and get moving. We meet in three days."
            "Where do we meet?" Kyle asked as Dan began walking away "Pittsburgh isn't exactly a small place."
            "Maybe you guys should update Backlash on your number so he can tell you," Dan responded without turning around.
            "Maybe you should fuck off," Nick said, then spit into the street in his direction.
            "This blows," Kyle said as a light rain began falling "So what do you wanna do now?"
            "Hmmm," Nick pondered "I want to fuck that meth head in her ass."
            "I thought you were super picky in strip clubs?"
            "Well you fucked me over on the hot chick, now I gotta settle."
            "Meth girl wants my cock, not yours. I was the one with the c-note."
            "She knows who you got it from."

December 21, 2018

Vampires of Pittsburgh - Vital Message

[Posted by Ted H]

As I am the type to be as offensive as possible, let me just say....Merry Christmas.


[Vampires of Pittsburgh - Vital Message]

            Matthews apartment complex was devoid of all life in its parking lot. The usual collection of homeless, drug dealers and their addicts that Blake and John had become so accustomed to constantly seeing that they were invisible were now being noticed for their complete absence. "Something was here," Blake said with the hairs on the back of his neck standing up. "You sure?" John asked, idly patting where he concealed his sidearm.
            "Yeah," Blake said after a pause, then started across the lot. They made it up to Matthews apartment door without incident, but John stayed vigilant. "You think this is a trap?" John asked. "I sure hope not," Blake said, remembering the last time he was cornered in this complex "I'm not a fan of getting tabbed." He knocked two times loudly on Matthew's door and waited.
            The door creaked open slightly to reveal Matthew peeking out, who then swung the door open wider. "Jesus, guys, what took you? Get in here!" He said quickly and the two entered. "You can relax now," Blake said, half mockingly "The heroes are here."
            "I honestly don't have the patience for your jokes, Blake," Matthew chastised.
            "Clearly you do, seeing how you insisted on my presence."
            "And if the situation didn't scare the hell out of me, or require your knowledge, I wouldn't have told you."
            "Alright, fine," Blake said, all kidding aside "What's the problem?"
            "Something is looking for you."
            "That's nothing new."
            "No. This something is different. Powerful. They knocked on my door earlier and asked for you. Said you weren't home."
            "Yeah, we've been running errands all day," Blake proclaimed.
            "Blake's been all over town, like a child, looking for a cigarette they don't make anymore," John corrected.
            "What now?" Blake asked "And who exactly is looking for me?"
            "I don't know who they are," Matthew said "But they knew better than to try to enter here. We spoke in the doorway and they definitely took notice of my protection runes."
            "So where are they now?" John asked "If they were so hell bent on finding Blake, they sure have a funny way of showing it."
            "This woman was in charge," Matthew explained "And she had this royal arrogance about her. She started at your house, then came here to relay a message. She isn't interested in hunting you down. You are to find her now."
            "If she relayed a message, then why not just tell John the message on the phone?" Blake asked as he flipped through pages of a book on a nearby table. The book was in a completely unknown language. "Why drag me all the way over to you?"
            "Blake, you really need to understand how fucked up this feels," Matthew said as he walked over and closed the book Blake was playing with "This woman wasn't human."
            "I've been hired by non-humans before," Blake said after a pause.
            "I've been around plenty of the abnormal before, and this one concerns me. Just be careful."
            "Ok, ok," Blake said "Enough with the whole cryptic routine. What's this vital message you need to tell me?"
            Matthew narrowed his eyes, then reached into his pocket for a piece of paper he had written on. "This is an address, be there at midnight," Matthew said as Blake took the paper, glanced at it with a shrug and handed it to John. "I don't know what's there, but I once again stress caution," Matthew added. "Yeah, yeah," Blake dismissed "So what about the others with this lady?"
            "Big, silent, imposing and dressed in all black," Matthew said "So don't start any fights."
            "Can't be helped sometimes," Blake said with a grin as he made for the exit.
            "If you do start trouble, please leave me out of it," Matthew said.
            "No promises," Blake said as he opened the door and left, John right behind him. "Matthew seemed a little genuinely freaked out," John said as the men approached the car in the parking lot. "Meh, he'll be fine," Blake commented.
            "You're not even a little concerned?"
            "If they wanted to cause me harm, they wouldn't ask to meet me somewhere at a later time."   
            "Maybe it's a trap."
            "Not as effective as, oh I don't know, waiting to jump us in an empty parking lot under the cover of darkness."
            "That's not funny. Now get in the damn car."

December 2, 2018

Vampires of Pittsburgh - Crisis

[Posted by Ted H]

Well this NaNoWriMo was a dud. Lots of stuff got in the way and I'd rather tank the year rather than force progress. Still, I got the story established, so I'll close out the year with what I pounded out, the little that there was...


[Vampires of Pittsburgh - Crisis]

            James Blake was never the type to easily lose his cool, but today the desire was a bit overwhelming. He was staring almost slack jawed at the clerk in a remote part of town, struggling to make sense of what the young man just said to him. "Are you sure you looked?" he asked "Cuz you were pretty quick to say you were out of them."
            "Dude," the clerk said in a dismissive tone "We haven't had those cigarettes stocked in a long ass time. I'm pretty sure they stopped making them. I can sell you regular Salems if you like."
            "When is your shipment day?" Blake asked.
            "Dude, you're holding up my line."
            "Your line is two people long, including me."
            "Move your ass!" a cranky old lady yelled from behind.
            "What do you want from me, dude?" the clerk asked.
            "Just find my cigarettes," Blake pleaded.
            "We don't sell them, sorry dude. Perhaps some Marlboros?"
            "Do I look like an animal?!"

October 16, 2018

2018 NaNoWriMo

[Posted by Ted H]

Oh, it's that time. Time to throw my hat into the ring again and hope I can recapture the magic that once led me to regular victories.

And because I've spent the better part of 3 damn years wrapping up the last adventure of James Blake, it totally makes sense to start a fresh one up right away. That's right, coming in November will be part 3 of the James Blake saga: Vampires of Pittsburgh.

There will be some returning characters from previous novels, but since Blake tends to leave a body count behind him, new faces will always be needed. Some of these characters have been planned out in advance while others are people I'm straight up taking from Safe Haven and sticking them here, also the concept of Resevil. See you all next month!

...Also on my to do list is to collect the complete "Pure Human" series into one post and add it to the collection at the top of the page...

October 7, 2018

The 2018 MLB Turtle-Wax Awards

[Posted by Ted H]

I'll miss every update in my life except my terrible awards in October...


[The 2018 MLB Turtle-Wax Awards]

These are the awards you DON'T want to win.

The "Rays And Orioles Would Rather Play In This Division" Award
Awarded to the crappiest division in baseball
[Previous winners: 2009 AL Central, 2010 AL West, 2011 AL Central, 2012 AL Central, 2013 AL West, 2014 NL East, 2015 NL East, 2016 AL Central, 2017 NL East]

---The American League Central: Indians, Royals, Tigers, Twins, White Sox---

Let's face it: the AL Central was BAD this year. I know a lot of teams entered this year ready to tank, but every other division had some intriguing story lines. The AL East had two 100 win teams, the west in both leagues and the AL Central had three teams each fighting for the division down to the wire. The NL East was almost as bad, but their worst team in Miami had the same record as the AL Central's 3rd place team. The AL Central had two 100 LOSS teams and the Indians won pretty much by default.


The "Steroid Accusation Rookie Of The Year" Award
Awarded to the slugger who is probably gonna get accused of steroids next, if not already
(I am NOT accusing the winner of steroids, just sayin...)
[Previous winners: 2009 Aaron Hill (TOR), 2010 Corey Hart (MIL), 2011 Jacoby Ellsbury (BOS), 2012 Edwin Encarnacion (TOR), 2013 Chris Davis (BAL), 2014 Victor Martinez (DET), 2015 Nolan Arenado (COL), 2016 Brian Dozier (MIN), Justin Smoak (TOR)]

---Christian Yelich of the Milwaukee Brewers---

2018 HR total: 36
Previous Career High: 21 in 2016.

This is probably explainable by one of two things; 1: He's free of that cavernous ballpark in Miami...or 2: He's free of that perpetual shitty team in Miami. Either way, Yelich seems real happy to be free of Miami.


The "What The Hell Happened To You?" Award
Awarded to the team that fell off the map when they were supposed to be contenders
[Previous winners: 2009 New York Mets, 2010 Seattle Mariners, 2011 Cincinnati Reds, 2012 Miami Marlins, 2013 California Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, 2014 Milwaukee Brewers, 2015 Seattle Mariners, 2016 Kansas City Royals, 2017 New York Mets]

---The Washington Nationals ---

It's Bryce Harper's final season (maybe) and possibly your final chance to make a realistic run at a world championship. The whole world is watching to see if you can at least escape the first round of the playoffs this time. The only real competition was going to be the Mets, which mean there was supposed to be no threat to yet another divisional title in Washington.....And instead we got an uninspired team that wilted from a surprise push from a couple of young teams in Philly and Atlanta. Great teams are able to answer the call to such a challenge from young and inexperienced teams. The Nationals failed. No bonus points for not losing again in the LDS when you don't even get that far.


The "Shut Your God Damn Mouth" Award
Awarded to whoever talked too much without backing it up
[Previous winners: 2009 Chicago Cubs, 2010 MLB Network, 2011 Carlos Zambrano (CHC), 2012 Boston Red Sox, 2013 Jordany Valdespin (NYM), 2014 Keith Olberman (ESPN), 2015 Boston Red Sox, 2016 Boston Red Sox fans, 2017 Yasiel Puig (LAD)]

---The San Francisco Giants Even Year Magic---

We get it, Giants fans. we get it. Giants won it all in 2010, 12 and 14. You claimed it was some even year magic. But then 2016 came and it all ended...or so we thought. Fans and media alike claimed that the even year magic still meant that while the Giants are rancid in odd numbered years, that they'll still be a force here in an even year. But 2018 saw the Giants finish 4th and only die hard delusional fans honestly believed that these guys had a chance at the playoffs. Now next year you'll suck again too, but in 2020 please try to shut the hell up. Instead of relying on some magic or whatever, maybe try to be a good baseball team.


The "This Years Miracle, Next Years Indians" Award
Awarded to the team that made a surprise playoff run this year, and will fall short next year
[Previous winners: 2009 Colorado Rockies, 2010 Tampa Bay Rays, 2011 Tampa Bay Rays, 2012 Baltimore Orioles, 2013 Cleveland Indians, 2014 Kansas City Royals, 2015 Houston Astros, 2016 Cleveland Indians, 2017 Minnesota Twins]

---The Oakland Athletics ---

Oakland has no payroll, which is more of a management decision to be cheap along with the fact that no one watches them at home. Good players for cheap only last so long before they jump ship for teams that actually want to pay them. Oakland is incapable of fielding good teams in back to back years.


The "This Years Phillies, Next Years Miracle" Award
Awarded to a team that sucked this year, but can make a run next year
[Previous winners: 2009 Chicago White Sox, 2010 Chicago White Sox, 2011 Washington Nationals, 2012 Seattle Mariners, 2013 New York Yankees, 2014 Chicago Cubs, 2015 Detroit Tigers, 2016 New York Yankees, 2017 San Francisco Giants]

---The Philadelphia Phillies---

Call it youth, but everything should click next year for the Phillies. It'll also help that they play in the same division as the always bad Mets and Marlins and the Nationals are probably gonna start sucking too.


The "AAA Team In Disguise" Award
Awarded to a team that might have better luck in AAA
[Previous winners: 2009 Washington Nationals, 2010 Pittsburgh Pirates, 2011 Boston Red Sox, 2012 Houston Astros, 2013 Miami Marlins, 2014 Texas Rangers, 2015 Philadelphia Phillies, 2016 Minnesota Twins, 2017 Detroit Tigers]

---The Miami Marlins ---

When the entire team gets shipped off so the team can save some cash up to start all over again and maybe build a winner in Miami, then we get what is quite literally a AAA team pretending to be major league players.

The "Dull Knife In The Drawer" Award
Awarded to the biggest mental error this year
[Previous winners: 2009 Washington Nati(o)nals, 2010 Barak Obama, 2011 Brian Sabean (SF), 2012 Derek Norris (OAK), 2013 Mark Pagnozzi (HOU), 2014 Michael Pineda (NYY), 2015 Arte Moreno (LAA), 2016 Buster Posey (SFG), David Price (BOS)]

---Gary Sanchez of the New York Yankees---

Let's just ignore that he runs down to first like Robinson Cano in a meaningless game would. Let's also forget that this year he was out done offensively by the teams backup catcher. Gary Sanzhez' biggest mental issue this year is that there are times where he literally cannot catch the ball when it is pitched to him. Catching the ball, in case you don't know, is generally an important thing to do when your position in baseball is CATCHer.
Also the fact that he sometimes allow a runner to steal 2nd, 3rd and home all in the same inning is a pretty good indicator that sometimes on defense the lights are on but nobody's home.


The "Results May Vary" Award
Awarded to a player/team that didn't live up to the hype
[Previous winners: 2010 Stephen Strasburg (WAS), 2011 Carl Crawford (BOS), 2012 Los Angeles Dodgers, 2013 Toronto Blue Jays, 2014 Boston Red Sox, 2015 Robinson Cano (SEA), 2016 San Diego Padres, 2017 Eric Thames (MIL)]

---Shohei Ohtani of the Los Angeles Angels---

This has nothing to do with him missing a huge chunk of the year with an injury, nor the fact that his pitch AND hit approach became just hitting as a result. It has everything to do with how Ohtani swindled the Angels out of their money. Ohtani knew he was hurt when he was looking for a team to sign with. He came over early and lost out on some cash, but as a result he could come to America and take advantage of their teams' better medical staff. Now he needs Tommy John surgery and won't be able to cut loose with his pitching ability until his contract is pretty much over in LA, which means he'll be able to jump ship and find a new team, leaving the Angels in the dust again.


The "Ozzie Kind Of Crazy" Award
Awarded to the manager who had the most entertaining season to watch
[Previous winners: 2012 Bobby Valentine (BOS), 2013 Joe Girardi (NYY), 2014 Kirk Gibson (ARI), Matt Williams (WAS), Joe Girardi (NYY), Brad Ausmus (DET)]

---Kevin Cash of the Tampa Bay Rays---

Kevin Cash must be doing some serious drugs. Like, I bet he takes an analytics report, cuts it up until it's a fine powder, then snorts it. How else can you describe him deciding that closers should start games and starting pitchers should be either sent off to other teams or taken behind the barn and shot?
Next year I'm willing to bet he'll submit a lineup card that features no outfielders and 7 infielders.


The "Go Stand in the Corner!" Award
Awarded to the most standout suspension of the season
[Previous winners: 2013 Ryan Braun (MIL), 2014 Alex Rodriguez (NYY), 2015 Jonathan Papelbon (WAS), Rougned Odor (TEX), Auston Romine (NYY)]

---Ken Giles of the Houston Astros---

Crime: Punching self in the head.
Time: 2 Loss of closer role, demotion and eventually traded.

You read that right; Ken Giles punched himself in the head. Dude gets so mad over giving up a home run that he gives himself a right hook. Astros were less than impressed and the very next game had someone else pitching the 9th inning. Eventually they decided the best thing to do is to send him away entirely by trading him for a wife beater.


The "They'll Let Anybody Pitch" Award
Awarded to the pitcher who should never have been allowed near a mound
[Previous winners: 2014 Kevin Correia (LAD), Rick Porcello (BOS), James Shields (CWS), 2017 Wade Miley (BAL)]

---Dylan Bundy of the Baltimore Orioles---

8-16...5.45 ERA...171.2 innings...41 home runs allowed...and a .274 batting average against.

I'm just gonna rename this award to the Baltimore Orioles 5th starter award. Bundy was bad. No one gave up even close to as many homers as he did, and few gave up runners with such regularity.


The "Just Retire Already!" Award
Awarded to the player on the wrong side of their prime
[Previous winner: 2015 Bartolo Colon (NYM), Alex Rodriguez (FA), Bartolo Colon (MIN)]

---Felix Hernandez of the Seattle Mariners---

Age: 32

Remember when King Felix was a feared force in baseball? I bet the Mariners are regretting the hell out if that giant contract they gave him. This season Hernandez went 8-17 with only 125Ks and an ERA of 5.55. I don't know who it is out there pitching, but it sure as hell isn't the King Felix I've come to know. I think it's time to retire, unless he's hurt. But if he's hurt in a way where he can't ever go back to being what he once was, maybe it's best to retire anyway.

September 30, 2018

Pure Human - Closure

[Posted by Ted H]

Imagine The Rock when I say...FINALLY! This sage has ended. No computer problem can stop me from finishing this shit. And now with a clean month between now and NaNoWriMo, I can sit and figure shit out. Enjoy the finale...


[Pure Human - Closure]

"This is all this guy's fault," Blake muttered as they arrived days later at the Upstate New York suburban home. Blake wore a sling supporting his arm, which he used to hold his lighter and cigarettes. "Did you even read the file Matthew gave us?" John asked, ignoring the statement. "I got the gist of it," Blake said as he used his good arm to set up a cigarette in his mouth to light up once he exits the car.
            "Does it bother you," John asked, causing Blake to freeze "That Matthew can't find any record or information on Vitaearnus?" Blake shrugged "Maybe he needs to look harder," he replied, then finally exited the car. Blake smoked outside the car for a moment while eyeing the house of his earlier client, which now had a "For Sale" sign prominently featured in the yard.
            "How you wanna do this?" John asked. Blake shrugged. "I just want to wrap this up and get drunk," Blake responded as he flicked his cigarette away and started towards the house. "Just be nice about it," John warned "The guy has had a rough week." Blake rolled his eyes "Then we can compare notes," he said as he reached the front door and knocked.
            A few moments passed before the door slowly opened, revealing the man from the beginning. He was unshaven and had the look of a man who hadn't slept in a few days. "Seems we've all had a rough week," Blake said as the man wore a stern look on his face. "I don't care anymore," the man said as he began to close the door "You got paid, just go away." Blake stuck his foot in the door to keep it open. "Hey," Blake spat out "You want closure? Cuz I've got closure for you."
            "My wife is dead," the man said.
            "I know," Blake said plainly "It's in the file." The man man pressed his lips and gave a stern look, but ultimately relented and allowed Blake in. "Where's Lizzie?" Blake asked as he entered "Never mind," he said quickly "I hear cartoons." There were a few packed boxes piled in the hallway and the pictures that lined the walls when Blake was first around were gone. The father was visibly upset with Blake, so John decided to divert the anger. "How did your wife die?" he asked. The father paused "They said it was a stroke, but...It couldn't have been," he said. "It wasn't," Blake said, then pressed ahead.
            The three made for the living room where Lizzie sat almost in a trance watching television on the couch. "How is she holding up after her mother died?" John asked. "It's like she doesn't even notice," the father responded, tears welling up in his eyes. "What if I said she's connected?" Blake asked as he pulled his fist from his coat and blew powder over Lizzie.
            "This shit again?" the father yelled as he charged at Blake and grabbed him by his collars. "Relax," Blake said. "Get out!" the man yelled. "Sir, just calm down," John tried to assure "You've seen before what Blake did was harmless."
            "It's also ineffective." he man said as he released Blake. "Watch carefully and try to stay calm about this," Blake said as he raised his hand over Lizzie and lowered it down to his side slowly. As his hand fell passed Lizzie, the outward appearance she had as a child slowly faded to reveal the form of a blurry charred black figure with deep pools of white where her eyes would go.
            "What the fuck is that?" the man whispered while his lower lip quivered.
            "It's called a mimic sprite," Blake answered as Lizzie's facade of a normal girl faded back into view, all the while she obliviously watched television. "It's a parasite grade spirit."
            "Why didn't it look like this the first time?" the father demanded. "Because it wasn't there last time," Blake said "But it was preparing her for a takeover."
            "What do you mean?"
            "When the sprite needs a new host, it first needs to vacate the soul from it. As little Lizzie was losing her soul, you took notice to it and mistook it for a possession."
            "I...I don't understand..."
            "It's a lot to take in, I get it."
            The father began to weep for a moment. Blake and John stood nearby awkwardly. Lizzie continued to watch television. "Why her?" he finally asked, wiping away tears "Why my Lizzie?"
            "It needs a blood relative," Blake said plainly "Your wife did this."
            "What?" the father said, snapping out of his grief.
            "If I used the Illusion Breaker on her before, we would have seen her for what she really was."
            "When was my wife taken?"
            "She lost her mother the same way when she was about Lizzie's age. The woman you thought you knew died as a child. What you loved, married and had a daughter with is now sitting there in your child's body. The father took a step back in disbelief. "What do I do?" he asked "What can I do?"
            "She's pretty harmless now," Blake said while looking at the oblivious child "Give it about a week or two and the parasite will adjust to its new body, she'll act like the old Lizzie. Heck, you might just decide that everything you saw and heard today was either a dream or a hallucination, and go back to a regular life."
            "A regular life?" the father asked "With that monster?"
            "Raise her to be a nun," Blake said with a shrug "Keep her celibate. End the cycle with her."
            "Wait, what?" the father asked, confused "Aren't you going to do something about her? This is your job."
            "My job," Blake corrected "Is to identify what was happening to your daughter. A Mimic Sprite is hard to stop once it has a foothold. And even if we stopped it, your daughter's soul was already draining and your wife was gonna die anyway."
            "Get that thing OUT of my daughter," the father demanded.
            "That thing IS your daughter now," Blake said "There's no getting rid of it and saving what Lizzie was. And before you get any ideas of how you can get rid of that spirit, I'd advise you watch "The Omen" and see how things ended for the father there."
            "What can I do about this?"
            Blake gave another shrug, then motioned to John that it was time to leave. "Raise it, or don't" he said as he handed John the file and began walking back down the hall for the exit "Put it up for adoption of whatever. Like I said, it's pretty harmless right now. Start panicking when it gets pregnant."
            "You have got to be kidding me," the father bellowed in anger "You just expect me to live a normal life with this thing, this monster?"
            Blake fished out his cigarettes and stopped short of the open front door. He barely looked back as he simply said "Yes."
            "That thing isn't even human!"
            Blake stifled a laugh as he walked out the door. "You'd be amazed at what passes for human nowadays."