Category: Sports

I recently read an article in the Nashville Scene titled; “Preds Fan’s Guide to Hating Pittsburgh. I thought there might actually be some substance to the article but once I read it I realized that, unlike them and their catfish tossing, we “Yinzers” have plenty to be proud of.

It started off slamming Pittsburgh calling it the “City that Self Awareness Forgot.” It went on to say that when talking to a Pittsburgher, “You have to listen to a litany of the most banal, mundane accomplishments in the history of human civilization.” Obviously the author of this post, whom I will address later, obviously doesn’t realize that some things are said jokingly; like our particular method of making left turns.

“They are really proud of their rivers too, even though only one is of any consequence.” I had to laugh at that one. While the rivers may not see the same commerce traffic of the steel era, they were what made Pittsburgh the industrial mecca of its time. All 3 rivers were packed with barges carrying coal, iron ore, steel, grain and livestock and on and on. The rivers are also the reason that Pittsburgh is known as the City of Bridges. This was because during WWII Pittsburgh was a prime target for the enemy, because of the Steel manufactured here for use in military weapons and vehicles. The large number of bridges insured that even if one was bombed, there would still be more to insure the commerce could continue. Let’s not forget that Pittsburgh is one of the leading City’s in medical research and development.

“Pittsburghers love to tell you about how great they are at waving towels, as if in the thousands of years humans have been drying themselves off, no one ever thought to spin one above the head until a bunch of Yinzers did it.” Once again, a small guffaw escapes my lips. Ok, here is the history of the Terrible Towel. It was invented by Myron Cope, the color commentator for the Pittsburgh Steelers, in preparation for the 1975 playoffs. Cope wanted a symbol for all the fans to rally behind. It worked because in 42 years the Terrible Towel is the only “gimmick” that has been constant in any sports venue. I mean, what does Nashville have? Dead catfish and a Country Music Super Star to sing the National Anthem? Which by the way was flat and pitchy. But I digress. Before you slam a Pittsburgh sports tradition, which by the way, every other sports team attempts to copy, maybe you should learn a little more about it. Such as, The Terrible Towel is 42 years old. Myron Cope signed the copyrights over to the Allegheny Valley School. This School is a series of campuses for people with severe mental and physical disabilities, of which Myron Copes son is one. That means all the profits go directly to the school. What do your dead catfish get you, besides laughed at I mean. It is also a lasting memory of Myron himself who bled Black and Gold and loved this city more than anyone I know.

They are very proud of having drafted Sydney Crosby for their beloved Penguins, a Team most of them didn’t know they had until 1984, then forgot all about until 2005.” The writer of this piece says there was some flim flammery involved in getting Crosby. He sites some shady drafting process because of the NHL cancelling the 2004 season and Pittsburgh was awarded the #1 Draft in 2005. But if Nashville would have been granted the #1 draft there wouldn’t be an issue. Oh wait, that’s right, The Nashville Predators weren’t even a gleam in the NHL’s eye in 2005. I also believe that if the NHL hadn’t given Nashville the equivalent of a participation award by awarding them a franchise, they wouldn’t have been able to attract one on their own.

Now they go on to say that Pittsburgh was awarded the #1 draft pick in 2003 and that wasn’t on the up and up. With that draft they chose Marc-Andre Fleury who, according to this well informed writer, “has since become best known for getting replaced by literally anyone within earshot of the Pittsburgh bench during the playoffs.” Let’s see, drafted in 2003. It’s now um, 2017. I make that 14 years in the NHL. I imagine he might have lost a step or two in that amount of time. But let’s not forget, when Matt Murry was injured at the beginning of the playoff, it was Fleury who was phenomenal and kept them in the playoffs.

The hater-ade must have been flowing freely when this last paragraph was written. It goes something like this; “Of course all of this fortune – which was definitely NOT engineered by the National Hockey League because the Pens are owned by one of the league’s all-time greats in Mario Lemieux (who ended up a Pen in 1984 because Pittsburgh put on a tank job George S. Patton would be proud of) – has resulted in resounding success in the Steal, uh, Steel City.”

I must laugh at anyone from Nashville wanting to point out any type of chicanery in the NHL. I guess the writer hasn’t watched any of the Stanley Cup Finals. Games one and two were some of the worst acting since, well I’m not sure since when. To watch the Predators player’s taking dive after dive during the first 2 games, it reminded me of the first Mighty Ducks movie when Coach Bombay wanted District 5 to play act to draw penalties. To watch PK Subban cry and hold his shoulder after a legal check was pitiful. Maybe he should learn from Oli Matta who took a slap shot off of his ankle to block a shot but kept playing. Or even Pekka Renne who was flailing around at times after barely being brushed by legal contact.

Now let’s add the officiating. I guess the only reason so many calls are missed by the officials is because Seeing Eye dogs can’t skate. For the announcers who clearly hate Pittsburgh to comment on how obviously one sided the officiating is, maybe it is true. Even Carrie Underwood, married to Captain Mike Fisher of Nashville, said pretty much the same thing about the officiating. For a player to be standing in front of the and can’t make a play on the puck is ridiculous. Is it because of poor skills, bad positioning? Maybe it’s because PK Subban has his arms wrapped around Sidney Crosby and he can’t even lift his stick. However, the officials did prove they knew what holding was because it was called several times against Pittsburgh in game 3. Actually, most of the penalties have been called against Pittsburgh the entire playoffs.

They like to make fun Pittsburgh for putting cole-slaw and fries on a sandwich. He makes fun of it but there are many copies of the Primani’s sammich. Even Nashville copy’s it. How do I know? I was stationed at Fort Campbell Kentucky from 1987 to 1989 and spent lot’s of time in Nashville.

The writer closes with this stream of pointlessness but I thought I would include it. “Like many teams, the Pens reflect their city well. A handful of supremely gifted artisans surrounded by a bunch of workaday salarymen, coming together to produce impressive, if ultimately prosaic accomplishments.

Sure, a 100-foot I-beam looks great … for an I-beam. But give us the raucous rowdiness of a canyon of gold instead. 

If Flashdance taught us anything, it’s that dancing is more fun than steel mills. And even Jennifer Beals — Pittsburgh’s most famous cultural export, even though she’s from Chicago — is pulling for Preds.”

I laugh at the comment regarding the raucous rowdiness of a canyon of gold. Pittsburgh is the home of rowdiness and gold, Black and Gold to be precise. Once again, another Johnny-come-lately sports franchise to copy Pittsburgh.

In my last point I wanted to say something about the writer. Unfortunately it was written by, and I quote, a “Committee of Hockey Insiders” which might just be code for not wanting to attach your name to this. I honestly can’t blame them. I wouldn’t want to take credit for what was written in an attempt to take away from Pittsburgh exactly what they are; A city of industry, a city that is culturally diverse, leading the way in technology, leading the way in medical advances, a City rich in deep history, more movies shot in this region then Nashville and oh, yeah, THE CITY OF CHAMPIONS!!!

Below I included A link to the original article. All it really is pure jealousy… Geeze, and they call ME crazy…

Preds Fans Guide for Hating Pittsburgh


All of us have times when we need a little boost. Maybe it’s a bad day at work or a personal problem. Everyone has bad days, myself included. When I have a down day I am fortunate enough to have so many good memories to draw from that I can quickly replace my frown with a big smile. Great friends help as well. I am blessed that I have a large group of friends and a few special ones to help cheer me up when I need it. When I need a good memory I have one in particular that not only cheers me up but reminds me of the power of friendship.

When I was 5 years old my dad and I headed to the local fairgrounds on the 4th of July. Not for the carnival or the food but for the demolition derby. My dad loved them and soon I found myself rooting right along with him. It became our yearly ritual. I found myself getting to know who some of the drivers were and cheered for them as they took to the track. The man who was the M.C. for the derby’s was George Marshman. He was able to keep the crowd entertained between the heats and every year between the 3rd and 4th heats he would pull the same gag. While he was making announcements of upcoming events, someone would come up to him and bring him a plastic shopping bag. They would tell him it was found in the woman’s restroom under the grandstands. He would tell the crowd he was going to look through the bag for some sort of identification. He would pull out a dress and pair of shoes and then, as if right on que, he would pull out a 3-cupped bra. Even though he did it every year he still got a laugh from the crowd and me as well.

The drivers I knew at the derby, Lefty, Mark, Bill, Dennis, Tom, Moe and Barry, dominated their heats and all would usually make the feature race making it very exciting. One year, a kid in a big black car pulled onto the track. During his heat, he seemed to destroy every car he hit. He won his heat and in the feature, he had the same result. Every year, this same driver dominated the competition. I finally found out that his name was Alan and he quickly became one of my favorites. A couple of years later I discovered he lived right around the corner from me. I would ride my bike down and watch him and his buddies work on the derby cars. Shortly after my 12th birthday I started to hang out. The guys would let me help strip out a car or hand them tools.

Alan next to one of his Monacos numbered and ready to go. Around 1985

Alan next to one of his Monacos numbered and ready to go. Around 1985

My mom found out and quickly put the kibosh to me going to the garage. After a few days of hurt feelings and not speaking, my dad secretly went down and checked it out. After talking with Alan and the other guys, he was able to assure my mom that there were no drugs, alcohol or other shenanigans going on. Reluctantly she allowed me to start going back down with the stipulation that my chores and other responsibilities were completed before I did anything else. At first I got in the way more than I helped but by the end of that first summer, I had learned how to strip out a car’s guts and even how to use an acetylene torch. I still wasn’t allowed to travel to the derbies with the guys, but dad and I would go no matter where they went. As the years moved along and I got a little older, I was allowed to go to the derbies with Alan. His nephew Robert was a friend of mine from high school and we became part of the “pit crew.” When I turned 16, I took some money I had, $35 dollars to be exact, and bought my first derby car. It was a 1973 Plymouth Fury. Robert got a car from Alan and we got ready to start construction of our own cars.

My first derby as a driver

My first derby as a driver

My first car ever ran. 1973 Plymouth Fury III

My first car ever ran. 1973 Plymouth Fury III

When July 4th rolled around, I was no longer a spectator, I was part of the show. Mom and dad went to the derby as well. I was in the 1st heat. As we waited for the start time I couldn’t sit still. Finally it was time and we pulled the cars onto the track. They gave us the command to fire the engines and I think my heart was beating faster in my chest than the car was. When they dropped the green flag my foot went to the floor and I hammered across the track, destroying the first car I hit. I also damaged my car pretty significantly, too. By the end of the heat my car had sustained far too much damage to continue, but by virtue of that first devastating hit, I was awarded Crowds Choice and $25.00. I had been bitten by the derby bug and couldn’t wait to run my next one. I eventually found out that the big black car Alan ran all those years ago was a 1964 Chrysler Imperial. It was considered the Holy Grail of derby cars at that time. Alan has had a few since then, too. When I turned 18 I was lucky enough to acquire an Imperial as well. I took it to New Alexandria and was ready to do battle. I got stuck in the first heat and was counted out. In the second heat, the car got gremlins and shut off. I took it back to the pits and we got it running just in time for the 4th heat. As I pulled out onto the track the last thing Alan said to me was “Keep the car running…” I heeded his sage advice and did

My first New Alexandria Win

My first New Alexandria Win

everything in my power not to let the car shut off. I was hitting anything and everything and finally, I had made it down to the final two. My car was trying to stall with every hit I made but I would drop the transmission (you aren’t allowed to say tranny anymore) into neutral and clear the carburetor out. Finally I had done it; I won my first heat at New Alexandria. I was ecstatic. I got the car off the track and pulled into my pit stall and shut it off. I ran to collect my money and trophy. I ran back to the pits to get ready for the feature but the car wouldn’t start. I really didn’t care. I had winner’s money in my pocket and even though it was only $100 dollars, it felt like a million. Alan congratulated me and said I did good job keeping the car running. It was good to get a compliment from my mentor not to mention that I was a success at something I loved.

The heat win also qualified me for the Season Championship in August. That, however, was going to be missed by me as I was in Army Basic Training by then. On Championship night when they announced the drivers who were already qualified, my friend Dennis ran to the announcer’s stand and told them I wouldn’t be there because I had joined the Army. He said that when the announcer told everyone in attendance that, it was met with a standing ovation.

Now fast forward 29 years from that July evening. I hadn’t seen Alan or his wife and family for nearly 15 years but when I walked into his shop after moving back to Indiana, it was like I never left. Our friendship was obviously strong enough to survive time and distance away. Alan told me that his son, my name sake, Bob, was running derbies and doing quite well. It didn’t surprise me. Alan always did great at the derbies so Bob must have gotten that gene as well. Bob asked me if I wanted to help him and his friend Frank and his dad work on the cars. Bob said they needed another Old Guy’s experience. Of course I said yes. It was nice to get back to my roots and see I still had the skills Alan taught me that first summer 35 years ago. Plus it was nice to know my knowledge and experience meant a little more now.

It was also great to see a 35 year friendship still strong. It makes me thankful to know that Alan thinks of me that way too. So thanks, Alan, for 35 years of a great friendship and here’s to 35 more. Jeeze some people don’t take care of what really matters then they wonder why they don’t have such long time friends … And they call ME crazy.

patriotsWell, here we go again. The New England Patriots are embroiled in yet another scandal. From stealing other team’s signals to secretly video-taping the Rams final walk through practice just before Super Bowl XXXVI. The Cheatriots, oops, I mean Patriots are now accused of playing Sunday’s AFC Championship game with under inflated balls. Some might say oh that’s no big deal. Well, actually it is. Game balls should be inflated somewhere around 13psi. 11 of 12 were found to be at least 2 psi under-inflated. This makes the ball easier to throw and catch, especially in wet conditions like last Sunday’s game.

Bill "I'm Homeless" Belechick

Bill “I’m Homeless” Belechick

Owner Robert Kraft and commissioner Goodell

Owner Robert Kraft and commissioner Goodell

The little trick wasn’t discovered until the Colts intercepted a pass. The player, knowing something was wrong immediately gave the ball to his equipment manager and notified his coach as to irregularity with the ball. Coach Belechick was fined in 2007 for secretly taping opposing team’s sideline signals. I mean, I never thought Belechick was a great coach by any means, but to blatantly cheat to win? What message are you sending to anyone/everyone? Well, when your owner is good buddies with the commissioner what sanctions should we be looking at? Goodell is in a quandary. When he blew the Ray Rice investigation, Patriots Owner Robert Kraft and other Patriots came out in support of his mishandling. There also seems to be a question as to what should be done. I mean Dan Rooney, who helped get Goodell elected was fined shortly after in 2006 for saying the refs in the Steelers-Falcons game should be ashamed of themselves. So now, does Goodell hammer the Patriots? Hmmm, that’s a mystery. He impresses me as a guy with no loyalty so I would hope he hits the Patriots hard.

brady bawlingI am comfortable in the knowledge that the Patriots won’t be excluded from the Super Bowl for cheating, I mean really? They may not even know their fate until after the big game, but I feel that serious sanctions should be handed down. Nice message to relay to our kids. Go ahead and cheat in sports kids. If your mom, dad, coach or school is a favorite of the governing body, you’ll get away with it. I mean Brady is a professional ball-baby and Belechick a well known cheat and Kraft a well know suck up. Does anyone see anything of any substance happening to the Cheatriots? They will go to the Super Bowl and if Las Vegas decides, they will win and nothing will change. This sucks for those fans of football to have to sit through yet another Roger Goodell mess. I’m sure he and the Patriots will buy their way out of it. Geeze, and they call ME crazy…

jim harbaughjohn_harbaugh--300x300Well here we go. Super Bowl 47 is set. The San Francisco 49ers Will face the Baltimore Ravens. It has been dubbed “Harbaugh Bowl”. I call it the battle of the ball bags. The Harbaugh Brothers are known throughout the NFL for crying to the officiating staff after every play. Jim Harbaugh surprised everyone but the bookies in Las Vegas with his team’s come from behind victory against the Atlanta Falcons. Of Course his brother showed that Baltimore can win… Even a fixed game. Tom Brady played worse than Paul Crew in the movie “The Longest Yard”. I’ve seen poor performances before but New England’s Poor Play last Sunday against Baltimore  was the worst acting job since Jean-Claude Van Damme in ANY of his movies. No my dear readers, the outcome of both Championship Games was decided before any of the teams ever took the field.

Can the Harbaugh Brother’s coach? Well, they are not the worst coaches in the NFL but I would like to see less crying and whining during the game. Yes, there will be questionable calls, but that is part of sports. Should the referee’s be stepped to when they blow it? Absolutely, but I mean really, after EVERY PLAY? Now I must digress. Do I like John Harbaugh? No. He is coach of Pittsburgh’s most hated opponent; the Baltimore Ravens. Yes, we split the season with them but They are still our most hated rivals. I mean c’mon, the Ravens are the old Cleveland Browns. Jim Harbaugh used to play and he was good. I just don’t like the arrogance they both display. Harbaugh even made a comment last year about living in California. He has no idea what the STFU Filter is. But now the question remains; Who do you want to win the Super Bowl? Is it the Hated Ravens or San Fran who can equal Pittsburgh’s record of 6 Super Bowls Rings. Here’s how I look at it. If San Fran wins they will only be TYING Pittsburgh’s record. If Baltimore Wins then We’ll just have to beat up on the Super Bowl Champs in the regular season next year. Of course I’ll be more interested in the commercials anyhow.

Ray Lewis 2000 mug shot

Ray Lewis 2000 mug shot

In other Football News, Anna Welker, wife of New England Patriot Wes Welker made some unsavory comments regarding Raven’s Ray Lewis. Yes, we all know Lewis was acquitted of a murder in 2000 and obviously Anna Welker is not a member of the Ray Lewis Fan Club. She made her comments then apologized for them. They were: “Proud of my husband and the Pats. By the way, if anyone is bored, please go to Ray Lewis’ Wikipedia page. 6 kids 4 wives. Acquitted for murder. Paid a family off. Yay. What a hall of fame player! A true role model!”  Do I like Ray Lewis? No. I also think that any regular Joe, accused of Murder as Lewis was would have never been acquitted. Should Anna Welker be worried about legal repercussions from Ray Lewis? I doubt it. What could he really get her on? Definition of Character?

It will be an interesting Super Bowl to say the least. The very least actually. But I have also heard some of Steeler Nation saying they will be cheering for Baltimore this year. And I guess if one of the two bothers have to win I guess I’d rather see Baltimore then San Fran. I mean this is Ray Lewis’ final season. Pittsburgh went through it when Jerome Bettis retired so I understand what it means to Baltimore. Let’s just have a safe game with no injuries. I mean all joking aside, Winning the Super Bowl the year you retire is special. Ray Lewis would be going out on a high note I guess you could say. I just hope the money he gets from it won’t affect his AARP and Social Security benefits.  I mean what kind of retirement could he have if he breaks a hip or something. I’m sure if Baltimore wins the Super Bowl Ray Lewis’ party will be killer. Oh, sorry, I guess that was a bad choice of words.

We’ll see Pittsburgh there next year. It was tough sledding this year what with all the injuries they suffered. No matter what happens, Steeler Nation is still the greatest bunch of fans in the world in any sporting event.

Yes dear readers, it has been a while since I posted… There have been a million things going on and something had to give. I have still been watching football and NASCAR but have little time to blog.

Last week at Talladega Alabama, Tony Stewart set off a multi-car crash on the last lap. He was leading crossing the stripe to begin lap 188. Stewart had even said if someone tries to block him he will crash them… This comment was made a few weeks earlier and it was sad to see it come to fruition but someone else doing it to him. The crash shook up the points for the Championship and it is almost anybody’s race to win now. I haven’t been as religious watching as I usually am but I still try to see the results and try to catch a lap or two. It will be interesting to see who comes out on top.

Michael Vick and the Eagles visited Hinze Field this past Sunday. Vick was named MVP… By the Pittsburgh fans. The Eagles were in the red zone and Vick showed why he is not worth the 110 million he is being paid. He fumbled and Pittsburgh recovered in the end zone. He had trouble hanging on to the ball other times during the day as well. Vick Proved that unless it is a dog leash, he can’t hold on to it. Now I know I seem to hate the cross-state rival Eagles. I don’t. I don’t like Michael Vick or Any Reid. Vick should have never been allowed to re-enter the NFL after serving Federal jail time for dog fighting. Andy Reid is just a pud. He is not a good coach and a poor judge of talent. Vick has only ever played a complete season in his second year as a pro. If he finishes this season it will be a miracle. Most of his “injuries” occur after he has done something stupid, like fumble, throw an interception or completely screw up a play. Thankfully we are done with them for a few seasons until we have to beat on them again.

After the playoff game a few years back when Tennessee came to the Burgh and beat the Steelers they haven’t done much. The reason is the curse. they stomped the Terrible Towel and bad luck has befallen them ever since. Their QB Steve McNair was killed in a love triangle, Jeff Fisher was fired and they haven’t been tearing up the win column. In fact their stats have been less than impressive. Now tonight the Black and Gold travel to Tennessee after a 4-day break after beating Philly on Sunday. Now that could pose a problem but most of the Steeler faithful, myself included, don’t think it will be. As long as Pittsburgh plays their style of football and doesn’t play down to their opponent, like against Oakland, they will emerge victorious.

Anyhow, back to the curse. Myron Cope developed the towel during a playoff game in the 70’s. He was told by his bosses to come up with something to rally the fans. He told everyone to bring a yellow dish towel to Three Rivers Stadium to wave in support. Well that was it. The Terrible Towel was born. For 30 some odd years he towel has been a fixture in Steeler Nation. For the last 14 years the proceeds from the Terrible go to the Allegheny Valley School for autistic and handicapped children. Myron had a child that went there and it was his way to give back a little.

Myron Cope was a leader and a pumper upper of Steeler Nation. His unique voice and vocabulary became a fixture on Steelers broadcast with Bill Hillgrove and Tunch Ilkin. No matter what Pittsburgh was doing, winning or loosing, Myron had a way of speaking that became almost as famous as his towel. Below are the top 10 quotes from Myron.

10. “Like all copycats, they flop. Maybe they (fans) sit on them and if they take them home they use them for dust rags.” — Myron on imitation terrible towels.

9. “If that boy billionaire thinks he can shut me up, he should stick his head in a can of paint.” Myron Cope, after Washington Redskins owner Daniel Snyder sent someone into the broadcast booth during a game to tell Cope to stop referring to his team as the “Wash Redfaces.”

8. “I was freelance writing for Sports Illustrated and other magazines and the program director at WTAE radio said, ‘We’d like you to do commentary for us.’ I said, ‘Don’t try to kid me. I’ve heard my voice on tape.’ And he said, ‘That’s okay. Obnoxious voices are coming into style.’”

7. “Once people become inured to my voice, they listen to the content.”

6. “People may think I’m senile, but I ain’t. I thought I was a celebrity.”

5.”Okel Dokel!” Myron Cope-ism to describe something agreeable. For example, “Hey Myron, don’t the Bungals stink?” “Okel Dokel.”

4. Yoi – Yiddish saying by Myron to express shock or joy.

3. Double Yoi! — An addition to No. 4, but with more emphasis.

2. Triple Yoi! — No. 3, but with pinache. Such moments include the Immaculate Reception, Lynn Swan’s Super Bowl grab, or a sandwhich at Primatti’s (extra slaw).

1. Hum-Hah! — Used by Myron as a normal day equivalent to … well … nothing. Hum-Hah became an icon the same way Myron did; repetition and warm-heartedness. Rest in peace you cackling madman, you Dr. Cope, you Cope-a-canbana, you legend.

Myron created something special with the towel, the Titans tried to desecrate it and the curse prevailed. Tonight might be the same if Tennessee decides to go the same again.

Good luck Black and Gold…We love you win or lose…

It’s that time again. Football season is here. It started Thursday with what amounted to a high school game that saw Dallas play the Giants. I don’t think much of Tony Romo so even though Dallas won, I won’t comment on the game. Someone watching the game saw a true act of laziness. Jerry “The Jagoff” Jones actually has someone that sits in his owners box that cleans his glasses. Really Jerry? Do you think that you are so much better than anyone else? Ass.

Tried and True – Big Ben

Manning – Sent packing

Pittsburgh will open the 2012-2013 season traveling out to Denver to face newly transplanted Peyton Manning and the Broncos. Pittsburgh will start Roethlisberger who had a decent pre-season and looks ready to go the distance this season. Manning is returning to play his first regular season game since 2011. He injured his neck last year and ended up having an experimental procedure done over seas. Many pundants wonder if he is done or not. Obviously the Colts did. Instead of having him stay and mentor Andrew Luck, they ditched him. One of the best QB’s in many years, Indianapolis showed just what kind of front office they really have. Now needless to say, I have always liked Peyton Manning. He seems to be a down to earth person and approachable. He is no Tom Brady who just acts like a jagoff. Hey Tom, you ain’t that great. Now Big Ben, what else can you say. We are opening the season against the team that knocked us out of the playoffs last season on a questionable play but nonetheless we lost. Had we played better football that game that last play wouldn’t have mattered.

The Steelers Nation is in full swing and everywhere I have looked I see Black and Gold. No matter how the boys played last year it is last year and the Nation looks forward to the next season. I will say that no matter if the Steelers win or loose the Nation is one of the most faithful following I have ever seen. While many think that this game will be an easy win because Manning is rusty, let me remind you. It’s Peyton Manning. Rusty or not he is always a threat. Just coming off of an off season with injury doesn’t matter. It’s Peyton Manning. Now Roethlisberger has taken him on before and beat him. This is a new season and who knows, maybe the experimental surgery Manning had last season made him like Steve Austin, you know “The Six Million Dollar Man”, Nothing is a lead pipe cinch and over-confidence is not always a wise thing.

As I close, Good luck Black and Gold and let’s come home with a better outcome then last year. In closing something to make you laugh. My favorite “Pittsburgh Dad” football episode…

Pittsburgh Dad with Mike Tomlin

Pittsburgh Dad Watching the Steelers

There are many dialects, billions in fact, that cover our planet. You have English, Spanish, Latin, Korean, Chinese and on and on. I remember when Ebonics became  recognized in the United States. The Miriam Webster Dictionary is constantly adding new, hip words. However, I must digress. Coming from Western Pennsylvania, roughly 60 miles from Pittsburgh, we have our own way of saying things. A lot of it comes from the Italian, Slovak and Polish population that used to dominate Pittsburgh. Please enjoy this brief tutorial on the proper way to speak “Pixburgh…”

Aht – The opposite of in. “I’m headin’ aht to Heinz Field for the game…”

Babushka – A head scarf used for cold weather or a bad hair day. “It’s pretty cold aht, you better put a babushka on…”

Blitzburgh – A drinking town with a football problem

Chipped Ham

Chipped Ham (or Chip Chopped Ham or Chip Cham) – Processed ham that got it start in Pittsburgh by the Isaly’s company. You can also add BBQ sauce and make ham BBQ.

Chitchat – Idle conversation. “Boy, when Bertha starts to chitchat she goes on for ever…”

Dahntahn – The opposite of Uptahn. “I’m headin’ dahntahn to get some chipped ham…”

Dippy Eggs – Sunny side up. “I’m goin’ dahn to the diner to get some dippy eggs…”

Flahrs – Also known as flowers. “Look at that garden, they got some nice flahrs in nere…

Gumban – Some call them rubber bands.

Imp an Iron – A shot of Imperial Whiskey and an Iron City Beer. “Gimme and Imp an Iron

Iron – Iron City Beer. The Beer of Champions.

Jaggers – Thorns. “Watch them flahrs, they got jaggers all over them…

Jagoff – Anyone who pisses of a Pixberger. “John Harbaugh is a real jagoff

Jeetjet? No, j’ew? – “Did you eat yet? Why no, did you?”

Jumbo – Balogna. “I love a sammich made with jumbo and cheese…

Jynt Igle – A popular supermarket.

Keller – Color. “I love Black and Gold, what’s your favorite keller?”

N’at – And that. “We’re going to PNC Park to watch the Buccos n’at…”

Nebby – Nosey to a fault. “Man, that Angelia is just so darn nebby, I wish she’d mind her own business…”

Pixburgh – Some people call it Pittsburgh. “I live in Pixburgh, home of the Stillers, Buccos and Pens…”

Pop – A carbonated beverage. “I’m going to the corner store to get a pop, can I get you one..?


Redd Up – To neaten or tidy up. “Get yer butt up here and redd up  yer room..!

Sammich – Chipped Ham or Jumbo between two slices of Town Talk bread – “I’m goin to make a chipped ham sammich…

E’slibberty –  End of town opposite of W’slibberty. “I grew up in E’slibberty…

Slippy – Slippery. “Watch that sidewalk, it’s awful slippy this morning…

Spicket – Where you hook the garden hose up. “Hook the hose up to the spicket…

Stillers – 6 time Super Bowl Champs.

The Burgh – Home of the Stillers, Bucco’s and Pens.

Worsh –To use soap and water to clean. “”Mom’s ahtside hanging the worsh on the line…”

Yinz or Yunz – Y’all to the south, Youse to the east. “Are yinz goin to Heinz Field to watch the Stiller game..?”
I hope Yinz liked this satirical journey in the mind of a Pixburgher. We are proud here in Western P.A. and will always welcome you with open arms. To conclude, here are some episodes of my favorite Pixburgher, Pittsburgh Dad. Please enjoy…

Pittsburgh Dad – Fourth of July          Pittsburgh Dad – Seen a Tornado     Pittsburgh Dad – Watching the Steelers

Outsourcing gone wild…

It seems that outsourcing has gone totally out of control. The latest case involves our own Olympic team. While the majority of teams are self funded, the U.S. team has private sponsors. This year Ralph Lauren designed the outfits but that left the manufacture of said clothing to their own sub-contractors. This job fell on one of Lauren’s sweat shops, oops, I mean manufacturing plants in China. Instantly, a red flag went up. (Did you get the joke there?) So many people were so outraged that our own teams uniforms weren’t made in America. With so many Americans out of work, this was probably not what was needed to bolster support of our Olympians. Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid said that the panel should be ashamed and the uniforms should be burned and start over. Sen Bob Mendez D-N.J. said the situation was “appalling” and “embarrassing.”  Sen. Bob Casey, D-PA said; “The U.S. Olympic Committee was 100 Percent wrong to outsource the manufacturing of U.S. uniforms for the opening ceremony to China.” To that end Six Senators have proposed a bill that will require the committee adopt a policy that ensures ceremonial uniforms are “Sewn and/or assembled in the United States…” Time will tell how this all plays out but i do truly believe our Olympic gear should read; “Made in USA”.

Statue coming down?

Monster in the closet

With all of the hullabaloo after the release of the Freeh report outlining the investigation of the sexual abuse at Penn State there has been a ton of backlash. In a nutshell it said that there was an obvious cover up into the abuse and that Joe Paterno was complicit in the said cover up. This has left many crying foul and some screaming for the removal of JoPa’s statue outside of Beaver Stadium. The CEO of Nike has said that Paterno’s name would be removed from the name of their juvenile Early Development Center in Oregon. Paterno’s family is obviously outraged and some have come to his defense in this whole mess. They feel that his statue should not come down but it has still not been decided. PSU has increased security at the statue and there have been supporters leaving messages and notes in support of JoPa. We here at ATCMC will keep you posted. As for Sandusky… Good for you, you piece of shit…

Pirate slugger Andrew McCutchen

Much to everyone’s surprise, The Pittsburgh Pirates are in first place heading into the second half of the season following the All-Star Break. This is the first time the Pirates have had a winning season in 19 years…. Um, if I’m not mistaken, the Pirates have been on a 19 season skid and have set a MLB record for longest losing streak. However, Pirates outfielder Andrew McCutchen was invited to play in this years All-Star Game. He took part in the home run derby and was out after the first round with only 4 dingers but it was still proud to take part nonetheless. The Pirates began the second half of the season with a 3-game series against Milwaukee in their park on the 13th. A late game grand-slam led the Brew Crew over the Buccos 10-7 . Hopefully they can regain their pre-break magic and continue to power through the rest of the season… Let’s “Raise the Jolly Roger…”

Training at the lake

Keeping the community safe is a big job, it also takes money. The Derry(PA) Volunteer Fire Department is holding a BBQ, Car Cruise and Dance this Saturday. These are a great bunch of guys and do what they do for free. It is a daily struggle to maintain gear and trucks to be ready to respond at a moment’s notice to fires, accidents, flooding and a myriad of other emergencies. Not to mention there are trains that run through Derry every day and the Fire Department must also be ready to respond to rail emergencies as well. Come out and support these guys. Check out some old cars and get a bite to eat. The dance is from 9pm-1am and they are only asking a $5 donation at the door. If you want to enter your car in the judging it is $5 per car. It is going to be a great day and there is a huge turnout expected. Please come support them and have a great time as well.

In closing I wanted to mention that Watt’s Mack Sales in New Alexandria is having  their 5th annual truck and equipment show that the New Alexandria Demo Derby Grounds on August 18th from 8am to 4pm rain or shine. There will be all kinds of antique cars, truck and equipment there and it should be a good time for all. Admission is free and there will dash plaques for the first 100 registrants! Come out and have a good time and show your community spirit.

Well, as we watch another week come and go there has been lots going on. I for one was shocked to see gas prices hold steady in our area at $3.99 a gallon. It makes me wonder when “They” said, whomever “They” is, that gas prices would begin climbing and probably top out at over $5.00 by Memorial day. Why have prices held steady for over a week? I think it is because of all the hype surrounding the effects of ridiculous gas prices. I was also shocked to learn that for every penny gas prices go up, the oil companies make around $10 Million dollars in profit per quarter. I also learned that only about 8% of the oil used in this country is from this country. We import 92% of our oil for refining and everything else. Why can’t we keep our oil in this country and use it here? There’s no profit in it for these money hungry gas companies that make all of their money screwing the middle and lower class so they can keep their 87 privet jets and all of their other perks. Will the federal government ever step in? When shit sticks to the moon I say. When you become a member of Senate or the House of Representatives you have to give up all interests in those kinds of companies. All they do is put their shares in someone’s name from their family. Even those who swear to take care of the American people are lining their pockets from the oil companies no matter what they might try to tell you.

George Zimmerman turned himself in this week after learning that he was going to have charges filed for the shooting death of Treyvon Martin. He was charged with second-degree murder in the death of the 17  year old. I think this is a travesty. There has been so much hype over this case that I know I have to watch what I say here. For those of you who live in a cave and have no idea what is going on here, Zimmerman was the neighborhood watch captain in Sanford Florida who allegedly shot the unarmed teen. Zimmerman claims he fired in self-defense. The problem is we are really only hearing one side of this story. Was there a history between these two? Was it a chance meeting? Did Something occur earlier involving Zimmerman and Martin was in the wrong place at the wrong time? We just might never know. I can say this though, if Zimmerman is convicted or he isn’t, there is going to be a riot because there are those convinced that he is guilty but there are also those who feel he is innocent.

A Lawrence County Judge has found 14-year-old Jordan Brown delinquent in the death of his father’s pregnant fiance, Kenzie Houk, and her unborn child 3 years ago in their home as Houk slept. Since his case was moved to Juvenile Court, Delinquent is the same thing as Guilty in an adult court. However, since being found Delinquent, he will be released sometime before his 21st birthday. Many of those on the Houk side of the court room feel that he should have been charged as an adult and even though he will be released by the age of 21, they hope he gets the help he needs. Those on the Brown side of the court room are not happy with the outcome and feel that someone else is guilty for the murder and not Brown, who was 11 at the time.

Justice for Jennifer – Part II

Melvin Knight, a member of the infamous “Greensburg Six”, the 3 men and 3 women charged in the torture death of Jennifer Dougherty 2 years ago,  plead guilty to first and second degree murder as well as kidnapping and conspiracy to commit murder. Knight said; “I feel it’s the right thing to do and I have to fess up for what I did.” Joy Burkholder, Dougherty’s sister, said, “I don’t know if it’s a relief to not have a trial at this point. I don’t even know if there are words to explain exactly how we feel.” Angela Marrinucci was found guilty last year and was sentenced to life for the death of Dougherty. Marrinucci escaped the death penalty because she was under 18 at the time of the murder. I called this entry “Justice for Jennifer – Part II” because I wrote Part I when Marinucci was convicted. I plan on 4 more entries to coincide with the last 4 suspects trials. Read Justice for Jennifer – Part I here.

Well, that pretty much ends this week. The Pittsburgh Penguins are in Filthadelphia today to take on the Flyers in game 3 of the Stanley Cup quarter finals. The Pens are down 2-0 in the series and look to rebound and start making their way back as soon as they can. I hope you all have a great week and by the way, DON’T FORGET TO FILE YOUR TAXES! You don’t work for the Federal Government so you have to file them on time and pay what you owe…

Quick update… The Pens are now down 3-0 after getting shellacked in Filthadelphia this afternoon…

Okay, now that I have your attention… There is no joke I just thought I’d recap some of the news from the last couple months.

I guess the biggest thing is the gas prices. Since Obama took office a mere 40 months ago gas prices have climbed $2.20. That’s right kids, gas was a paltry $1.79 when we inaugurated our current president. Of course he is not to blame. He says it’s because of the speculators on Wall Street causing the prices to skyrocket. Pull my left leg, it plays Jingle Bells. Obama is also a hypocrite. In a time when he tells the American people to tighten their belts to save and they might not be able to travel like they wanted to, he has taken more vacations than any other president in history.  I will give Obama credit though. He was able to do something in less than 100 days that GW Bush couldn’t do in 8 years. What is that you ask? Triple the deficit… Some call November time for a change, I call it, “The end of an error…”

Ben Roethlisberger is in the news in the NFL off-season and for once it’s not for crashing his motor cycle or being accused of improper contact with a female while drunk. He is embarking on a trip in June he says will hopefully hone his senses for the upcoming season; he’s going to Scotland and Ireland to golf.  “It’s going to be pretty hardcore,” Roethlisberger said. “I’ll be playing something like 12 courses in 10 days and they are some of the best courses you can find. I’m going to K Club, St. Andrews and a bunch of others.” Of the 12 courses, several have hosted either the British Open or European Tour events. “Golf is such a mental challenge, and as frustrating as it can be sometimes, it can definitely make you stronger,” said Roethlisberger, who passed for 4,077 yards last season. “Playing some great courses in a setting like Ireland and Scotland will be pretty awesome, but it is also a great way to keep your mind sharp.” Well, we’ll see how this summer abroad either helps or hurts the Pittsburgh signal caller. Maybe he should take James Harrison with him when he wants to play through.

Today is an unusual one in the “Burgh. Both the Penguins and the Pirates are playing Philadelphia today. The Bucco’s dropped the home opener to the Philly’s the other day 1-0, while the Penguins beat the Flyers 5-2. Today marks the end of the Penguins regular season and the Pirates will play game 2 of the 2012 season. The Pens are the 4th seed in the playoffs so they are there. The Pirates are trying to end a 19 season slide of being the worst team in Baseball. Hopefully skipper Clint Hurdle can right the sinking ship and help the Pirates raise the Jolly Roger while Dan Balsyma can help the Pens Snob their way to yet another Stanley Cup. Seeing as how they are the most conceded team in the NHL according to Rangers coach John Tortorella, who incidentally was fined $20,000 for running his mouth. He has a lot of room to talk. Hell the Rangers are the most over rated, under talented team. I mean even Winnipeg has more talent then the Rangers.  Let’s go guys. Hopefully we can remind Philadelphia why they hate coming here by handing them a loss in 2 sports today.

Here comes Peter Cotton Tail, hopping down the Bunny… BUSTER!! No!”

Well, tomorrow is Easter. We will make it here at our house with an Easter Egg hunt with Molly in the morning then Church. Then we will gorge ourselves on Ham and all the trimmings followed by a nice huge belch. While Easter is a time most of us look forward to getting together with family and friends to eat and drink and talk and catch up, we should truly remember what it is really all about. Now keep in mind that I am no religious zealot but I do believe we should keep the true meaning of the day in our hearts as well. Easter is the day we remember and celebrate Jesus’ rising from the dead and ascending into heaven. It is more than a day of eating candy and ham. However you celebrate the day, please remember what tomorrow is truly about. Every year for Easter when I was growing up, my mom would make us new outfits right down to bow ties. We would don our new duds, pile into the family car for the sojourn to church and smile as everyone told us how nice we all looked. I searched high and low and couldn’t find a picture of my brothers and I dressed in our Easter best. It was a memory I will always have and cherish. I wish all of you a great Easter and please, do me one favor… Keep your dog inside until the Easter Bunny leaves.

Happy Easter Everyone from ATCMC!!

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