Archive for the ‘sports’ Category

SMILES EVERYONE! The United States Olympic Committee is Coming to SF Nov 24th or 25th – A Secret “Private” Meeting

Friday, November 21st, 2014

Smiles everyone, smiles. Why? Because we all need to look our best when the United States Olympic Committee road show beauty contest comes to town on either Monday, November 24th or Tuesday, November 25th, 2014. If we “win,” there’s a good chance that we’ll end up with the 2024 Olympiad.

I was thinking we were overdue for a visit and it turns out we were:

“The USOC has already vetted LA, and was due in DC Wednesday. San Francisco will be visited early next week.”

And who will meet with Scott Blackmun and the USOC, that get-fresh crew from Colorado Springs? IDK, it’s a secret! And certainly you yourself, Gentle Reader, ARE NOT invited, ’cause it’ll be a “private” meeting. Of course, you’ll be “invited” to pay for any “overages” (typically, they run into the eleven-figure territory) but that will come down the road a bit.

And where will they meet? IDK, it’s a secret! Oh well.

These IOC people could be anywhere around town and/or the bay area, so make sure to smile at any and all tourists you see.

Now here’s the thing about smiles and here’s why democracies just aren’t into the Olympics all that much anymore, here’s an actual demand from the corrupt International Olympic Committee:

IOC members shall be greeted with a smile when arriving at their hotel.

This is the kind of greeting the Olympics road show beauty contest people want:

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Of course, the USOC isn’t corrupt the way the IOC is, but the question is why we’re even considering hosting the 2024 Olympics in the first place.

Shouldn’t San Franciscans have a vote on this matter? Mmmm…

Shouldn’t smart, skeptical people be invited to this meeting instead of just having the naive boosters who are happy to be on Another Committee? Mmmm…

San Francisco 2024 Olympics Roundup: Reaction to Today’s Big Push in the Pages of the SF Chronicle

Thursday, November 20th, 2014

Well, today’s the big day for the bid to have the 2024 Olympics in the Bay Area.

San Francisco puts in chips for 2024 Olympics by John Coté

1. Obviously, an Olympics in the bay area would be good news for the San Francisco Chronicle. Obvs. I mean, that goes without saying, right? See the editorial below. I mean, they learned us this in Economics, case studies of media support for Olympics past.

2. What’s this?

“We have a lot of reverence for the Olympics … but there may be some ways to modernize the Games or do it a little differently,” said Giants President and CEO Larry Baer…

Sounds like Larry’s been looking at opinion polls. You know, Lare-Bear, the other option is to simply let authoritarian regimes host them from now on.

3. Gee, I really think “improvements” should be in quote marks here:

“Plenty of uncertainty remains, however, including whether improvements to housing, transportation and other infrastructure are worth the cost of hosting the Games.”

4. Is this right, our we still in the first inning?

Baer acknowledges that their effort is still in “the first inning,” even after a months-long exploratory process that included meeting with U.S. Olympic officials in July.

I’d say we’re in the seventh inning stretch. This contest will be all over in a month or two. After that, the only question will be whether America gets the Games in 2024.  This “first inning” stuff is spin spin spin.

5. Here’s the start of some nice OTOH grafs:

“It looks more and more like a boondoggle,” said Andrew Zimbalist, economics professor at Smith College in Massachusetts and author of the upcoming book “Circus Maximus: The Economic Gamble Behind Hosting the Olympics and World Cup.” “It’s a very difficult calculus to make work for you,” Zimbalist said. “The modern Olympics costs billions and billions of dollars to host. The recent evidence we have is that it does not increase tourism, even during the Games.”

6. But this part here is false:

Private funding from international corporate sponsorships, ticket sales and local sponsorships would cover operating costs that Baer projected at about $4.5 billion.

How does John Cote know that operating costs will be covered? He doesn’t.

7. And what a coincidence that our budget and Boston’s are exactly the same! Who’s cribbing from whom?

Boston has a similar cost projection of $4.5 billion for hosting the 2024 Games, a number Zimbalist dismissed as “a nonsense figure.” “They don’t know what they’re talking about,” Zimbalist said.

This is a nice, strong statement. One would expect the cost overage to run from something like 200% to 500% – something in that territory.

8. Uh, the America’s Cup was a “boon” to which industries?

Last year’s America’s Cup was a boon to certain businesses but…” 

I can’t think of a one, honestly. A “boon,” really?

9. Here we go:

Olympic bid leaders aren’t touting the Games’ economic benefits, but rather the ability to rally a region around tackling some of its major problems — transportation and housing — while improving San Francisco’s marginalized southeast corner.

So, if we want to help black people in the southeast, why don’t we simply give them the $4.5 billion and be done with things?

10. And here’s your stinger:

“Olympians,” said Cribbs, “are just ordinary people who do extraordinary things.”

 Sometimes, I suppose. Other times, it’s like this:

Moving on… to this:

OPINION – Solid start to Bay Area bid for 2024 Olympic Games – San Francisco Chronicle

11. Whoo boy:

At the top of the list is a pledge that they will not be asking for any direct public subsidies in what is expected to become a $4.5 billion venture if San Francisco were to become the first U.S. city to host the Summer Games since Atlanta in 1996.

Didn’t we just through this with the America’s Cup? Who’s pledging that there will be no public subsidies? This is laughable.

12. Whoo boy redux:

“We’re trying to take all the lessons learned, not just from other Olympics but what we learned from America’s Cup,” said San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee, adding, “We’re going to be smart about it.”

This is what everybody says every two years. What makes 2024 different?

13. Whoo boy redux II, Electric Boogaloo:

This region’s diversity, appeal as an international destination and leadership in technological innovation would make it a perfect fit for an Olympic Games — as long as it’s done our way, with sensibility and sustainability. The framework of this fledgling bid is very encouraging

The Olympics in the Bay Area would be good for some and not good for others. The Chronicle says we should do things “our” way, but we’re following the well-worn path of countless others. Any “sensible” Olympics proposal from the bay area would get rejected by the IOC, so that option’s not really on the table, now is it?

And here comes CW Nevius, a bit off-message:

Bay Area’s Olympic dreams focused on landfill near Candlestick by C.W. Nevius

14. Ah, Nevius. Let’s watch him beg for access right here on Twitter. A bit unseemly, IMO. And then he goes on about the weather / climate. That’s the least of our problems, right?

15. Remember that stuff from Larry Baer up above about us being in “the first inning?” Forget all that:

It could work, but it would need buy-in — and soon 

I’m not sure why the Neve is so negatory on Brisbane. I think it could “work” as well as any other location.

Anyway, for some reason, the boosters picked today to have a Big Push in the Chronicle.

We’ll see how it goes.

Onward They Charge:

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Boston and D.C. Just Had Private Meetings with Olympic Officials – Will SF Have One Too Today or Tomorrow?

Thursday, November 20th, 2014

Or perhaps next week?

Check it, Boston just had its big meeting with the USOC, and DC had its yesterday.

What comes next on the list? SF and LA, right?

Now look at how many people were involved with this process in Boston two days ago.

If something similar were to happen in San Francisco, we’d have leaders from Stanford, UCB, UCSF, UCOP, ETC, and a bunch of Mayors from all over the bay area, gathering to meet with USOC chief executive Scott Blackmun.

I’m thinking our meeting will have a lot fewer people, as it’s still a secret, AFAIK.

And also, we seem to far behind Boston in terms of a public conversation.

The bogus I’m-the-Mayor-and-I-was-skeptical-at-first-but-now… pivot has already occurred in Boston a while back. Given the reputation of the Olympics process these days, the best way for the PR people promoting this coming fiasco to handle things is to have a kind of campaign like THIS IS NOT YOUR FATHER’S OLDSMOBILE or THAT DOESN’T LOOK LIKE A BUICK.

Anyway, it doesn’t look like the Public, La Raza, will be involved in this process anytime soon.

Oh well.

A Minor Mystery: Who’s Squatting On NoSFOlympics.Com and NoSFOympics.Org? Three Possibilities

Wednesday, November 19th, 2014

Here you go, somebody just registered NoSFOlympics last month, both the .com and the .org:

Capturedfssssf

Here are the deets:

Name DREAMHOST, LLC
Whois Server whois.dreamhost.com
Referral URL http://www.dreamhost.com
Status clientTransferProhibited
Important Dates

Expires On October 30, 2015
Registered On October 30, 2014
Updated On October 30, 2014

Now, who would do this? There are three possibilities I can think of. It was:

1. Somebody who opposes spending tens of billions of dollars bringing the 2024 Olympics to the Bay Area. Perhaps it’s just taking them a long time to get started; Or…

2. Somebody who wants to sell these URLs to the nascent anti-Olympics movement in the Bay Area. This could be called cybersquatting, by some. Or good business, by others. I mean, it’s not a crime or anything; Or…

3. Somebody who supports spending tens of billions of dollars bringing the 2024 Olympics to the Bay Area but doesn’t want people opposed to have the obvious URL. This would be a little cheesy. I mean, I’m against spending all that money but I would never register 2024SF.org just so that the boosters couldn’t use it.

In any event, somebody’s sitting on these URL’s, for some reason.

It’s an Olympic mystery…

Olympocalypse Now: The Time to Kill the 2024 San Francisco Olympics Idea is 2014 – New “NoSFOlympics” Site is Live

Friday, November 14th, 2014

Here are the Four Horse People of the Olympocalypse, these are the ringwraiths who recently rode to Colorado to promote the idea of inflicting the Olympics upon the San Francisco Bay Area in 2024:

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Read all about it at the new No SF Olympics website and NoSFOlympics Twitter. (I’ll tell you, Boston is way ahead of us this go-around. Its official pro-Olympics site is extensive and the concomitant NoBostonOlympics site / Twitter account are similarly active.)

Is it a probability that the Olympics will come to the Bay Area in 2024? No, not at all. But certainly it’s a possibility.

Remember the failed America’s Cup? It had an organizing committee as well, and you’d bump into its members all over town – how proud they were. You’d see them at Costco #144 in SoMA – so what are you working on these days, well I’m on the America’s Cup Committee and… So proud they were! And then they ended up costing us eight figures in cashola after all the promises and reassurances evaporated, after the team that got caught cheating won anyway, after a poorly-designed and/or poorly-maintained catamaran killed an Olympian.

And yet they thought they were Doing Good For San Francisco.

It’s the same thing now with the Olympics except we’re looking at an eleven-figure loss instead of just an eight-figure loss – the impact could be a thousand times worse.

You know, these people just seem to like Doing New Stuff. For instance, here’s Larry Baer hanging out a half-decade back at the debut of the failed UFL. Did he run away from this questionable venture? Oh no. He was quite interested in this quixotic attempt to compete against the NFL. Why? Because it was Something New.

Who knows, maybe the San Francisco Bid Committee will shut down operations next week. OTOH, maybe it will launch its website and there will be a big push, all of sudden, after flying under the radar with people saying, well, I don’t even know if this is a good idea in the first place.

The citizens of the Bay Area should be prepared for both possibilities.

“Barry Bonds” Catching Flies in the Presidio

Monday, November 10th, 2014

If you drive around long enough mouth agape in your look-at-me-I’m-Barry-Bonds-except-I’m-not-but-now-that-you’ve-mentioned-it-let-me-tell-you-about-x Audi* convertible, I’m sure that you’re going to get your fair share of flies squirming about your pie-hole.

It’s a lose-lose situation for both you and the fly. Hey, it’s Jersey Shore, West Coast. YOLO, Dude:

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Click to expand

(Hey, did Barry Bonds get a reputation rehab? News to me.)

In aggravation, this garish vehicle has no front license plate. Tsk tsk.

In mitigation, it appeared to be driven within the realm of reason, which is surprising considering it’s an exoticar in the 415.

Perhaps Dude will maintain that Barry Bonds lettering on the side of his ride until the next Giants Victory Parade, sure to come around the end of October 2016…

*So you buy and Audi but you didn’t actually want an Audi, so you black out the famous rings and also the trademark horse collar grill so people can’t tell it’s an Audi? OK fine. One assumes the Giants objected, or maybe Audi objected in some sort of appearance of a cross-license kind of deal?  

(South) San Francisco World Series Fan: Chevy + Dubs = SF Giants Love

Wednesday, October 29th, 2014

Another one from San Francisco photographer James Corrigan:

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How the San Francisco Giants are LYING When They Say “Ticket Scalping is Illegal” in San Francisco

Friday, October 24th, 2014

C’mon focus, look at the sign, as seen this morning by Stanley Roberts of People Behaving Badly and KRON-TV

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Now it could be that this is what the San Francisco Giants organization wishes Police Code Section 869 would say, but this aint what it says.

Comes now SF Weekly writer Joe Eskenazi:

“…according to the police code cited on the sign (Good Ol’ No. 869) scalping is not strictly illegal: This is a code that prohibits folks from selling wares on the street without a peddlers’ permit. This means folks who sell their tickets online or out of their homes or offices are not violating the law. And your humble narrator was unable to find anything within the police code stating that people who buy wares from unlicensed peddlers are subject to arrest…”

So, Giants, why don’t you take these signs down, or change them? 

(more…)

Electric Skateboard Unicycle! – This Tech Bro is a “Onewheel” “Beta Rider” – Bonus: Seussian Facial Hair

Friday, October 24th, 2014

This is a scene from the Golden Gate Park Panhandle, famous for its late-night, bully-boy, strong-arm bicycle robbers, and its “Have-You-Seen-My-Lost-Drone?” posters, and its winding bike path, which has become a test track for novel personal conveyances.

As here, with this Onewheel, a “self-balancing electric skateboard”

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Four white LEDs up front as headlights and four red LEDs in the rear as taillights? Of course.

Kickstarter funded? Of course.

On Instagram? Of course.

Engineering degree from Stanfoo? Of course.

Mountain View-based? Of course.

Read all about it:

“You can also follow us on twitter at @RideOnewheel
 

Kyle Doerksen

Future Motion Inc founder and Onewheel Inventor

Onewheel was imagined and developed by Kyle Doerksen, an inventor and design engineer who’s been dreaming about one wheeled vehicles for years. He has built hardware products from kids toys to consumer electronics to medical devices and works to create magical new experiences through technology. Electric vehicles are his passion and Onewheel is an expression of the true freedom and excitement that electric vehicles can achieve.

Onewheel launched successfully on Kickstarter in January 2014 and thanks to the support of our amazing backers the Onewheel dream is becoming a reality!

Onewheel is based in Mountain View, California and is a privately held company focused on the development of advanced personal vehicles.”

If You’re Going to San Francisco/ Be Sure to Wear Orange Yarn in Your Hair – As Seen on Ashbury

Thursday, October 23rd, 2014

Not just a fair weather fan:

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If you’re going to San Francisco
Be sure to wear some flowers in your hair
If you’re going to San Francisco
You’re gonna meet some gentle people there