Saturday, April 05, 2014

Some conditional good news and a note to Alex Rodriguez

Mr. Rodriguez --
Let the record show, you miserable shit of a man, that, despite your two $200 million-plus contracts, you remain a second tier sportsman.  Financially speaking, of course.
I say this because the New York Times estimated this morning that Michael Schumacher's career earnings exceeded 750 million.  Dollars, I'm assuming.  If it's Euros, dude -- we're talking the B-word.
All the best,
Geoffrey Raymond

That unpleasantness aside, today's question is:  Have you ever owned a puppy?

Very few things are as cute, and as engagingly disfunctional, as a puppy.  As the owner, you stare down at the little thing after it's done something that makes you laugh with a combination of love and the knowledge that you, a mature human being, are a vastly superior creature.

This same look is the way Michael Schumacher used to stare down at the press, just to pick a group, from the podium.  As if to say: Yes, I'm smiling.  And engaged.  But let there be no question between us as to who is living life on an elevated plane.

Which, frankly, could get a little tiresome -- that kind of benign, Teutonic arrogance.  The Prime Minister of Greece is probably familiar with the experience, but that's a tangent we need not explore just now.

In fact, there are people who downright loathed Schumi.  And although I'm not counted amongst them, I could see where they were coming from.  But even if you weren't one of his fans, surely the decent human buried down amid your darker urges can rejoice at the news that Schumacher is, after a couple of months in an induced coma, showing signs of coming up for air.

Lovely.  I'm sure a number of hard truths are still to be realized, but coming up for air is way better than staying under water.  Metaphorically speaking.

I leave now to watch the qualification session for the Grand Prix of Bahrain.  In which the Silver Arrows of Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg are favored to nab the front row.  Mercedes being, of course, the last team that Schumacher drove for.  And somewhere on those cars, discretely tucked away amongst the blaring sponsorship decals, are the words "Keep Fighting, Michael."

A Mercedes W154 Silver Arrow.  Supercharged, 3 liter V12, thought to put out about 450 brake horsepower.  In 1939!  Dude!  Pretty much everything you need in a race car except a seat belt.

What does that even mean?
What?
Brake horsepower.
I have no idea, but 450 of it is a lot.
Imagine how much horsepower they'd have if they took off the brake.
The mind reels.

I love the plaid upholstery.

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