The RP’s Weekly Web Gems: The Politics of Pigskin

The Politics of Pigskin

Today is what is traditionally known as Black Monday in the NFL – the day that is most popular with owners for firing staff in order to go in a  different direction with their respective clubs. Here is a list of the firings up to this point – EAGLES – Andy Reid, BEARS – Lovie Smith, BILLS – Chan Gailey, BROWNS – Pat Shurmur, Tom Heckert, CHIEFS – Romeo Crennel, JETS – GM Mike Tannenbaum, JAGUARS – GM Gene Smith. Follow the link to follow all the Black Friday news. [ESPN]

The Vikings pulled out a great win on a last second field goal Sunday night to beat the Packers and secure a playoff berth. The feeling was probably soured just a tiny bit for Adrian Peterson as he came up 9 yards short for the all-time single season rushing record with 2097. [LA Times]

The Broncos managed to snag the #1 seed with their win on Sunday. It’s hard to believe this team was once 2-3. I guess taking a chance on that Peyton Manning guy worked out. [Yahoo!]

Here is a preview of Wild Card weekend for you. [CBS]

It was an interesting sight on Sunday when the Redskins only had 7 players out on the receiving team for a punt. [picture]

Nice, random gesture by Jimmy Graham. [picture]





Here are the official 2012 playoff seeds.


  1.  Denver Broncos 13-3
  2.  New England Patriots 12-4
  3.  Houston Texans 12-4
  4.  Baltimore Ravens 10-6
  5.  Indianapolis Colts 11-5
  6.  Cincinnati Bengals 10-6

Wild Card games:

Cincinnati Bengals at  Houston Texans

Indianapolis Colts at  Baltimore Ravens


  1.  Atlanta Falcons 13-3
  2.  San Francisco 49ers 11-4-1
  3.  Green Bay Packers 11-5
  4.  Washington Redskins 10-6
  5.  Seattle Seahawks 11-5
  6.  Minnesota Vikings 10-6

Wild Card games:

Minnesota Vikings at  Green Bay Packers

Seattle Seahawks at  Washington Redskins


John Y’s Musings from the Middle: Children and Disclosure

Disclosure and children.

How much is too much?

How little is not enough?

As with most things, it’s a delicate balance and specific to the situation. One never should like to ones children. But one should probably never disclose gratuitous details that weren’t specifically requested.

For example, a few weeks ago my son and I were on the topic, somehow, of Christmas song and which ones were probably best known.

jyb_musingsI told him that Bing Crosby’s White Christmas was recognized as the greatest Christmas son ever –and had sold more records than any other Christmas song by far.

That was an “appropriate, informative, and measured response” to share with my 18 year old.

What I didn’t share with him is that my favorite Christmas song of all time is Christmas in Hollis by Run DMC.

I just can’t resist the lyrics,

“It’s Christmas time and we got the spirit
Jack Frost chillin, the orchas out?
And that’s what Christmas is all about
The time is now, the place is here
And the whole wide world is filled with cheer”


“My name’s D.M.C. with the mic in my hand
And I’m chilling and coolin just like a snowman
So open your eyes, lend us an ear
We want to say: “Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!”

But to have shared that, in my view, would have been a “parental over-share.”
Even thought its true.

#TeamRP vs. #TeamJYB3 Fitness Challenge: I’m No Bradley Cooper

plastic bag






LESSON #24 from my fitness training Josh Bowen as part of my fierce and ferocious fitness challenge with #TeamJYB3:

Wearing a garbage bag while exercising does NOT necessarily help you lose weight.  But it certainly makes you look stupid.

Or alternatively: Don’t follow the fitness advice of a mentally unstable movie character, even if he is being portrayed by the Sexiest Man Alive. (But go see Silver Linings Playbook — it’s terrific!)

Bradley Cooper Trash BagOr perhaps, Jonathan, I knew Bradley Cooper.  I’ve seen a lot of movies with Bradley Cooper.  Jonathan, you’re no Bradley Cooper.

Saul Kaplan: Random Collision Theory of Innovation

Collaborators are everywhere. You will find them in the gray areas between silos. Just look up from your current business model. Seek out difference and gather often across boundaries, disciplines, and sectors. Be open and be curious. Beware of random collisions with unusual suspects. Unless, of course, if you want to learn something new. In that case seek out innovators from across every imaginable silo and listen, really listen, to their stories. New ideas, perspectives, and the value creating opportunities are in the gray areas between the unusual suspects. And yet we spend most of our time with the usual suspects in our respective silos. We need to get out of our silos more.

Saul KaplanIt is human nature to surround ourselves with people who are exactly like us. We connect and spend time with people who share a common world-view, look the same, enjoy the same activities, and speak the same language. We join clubs to be with others like us. The club most worth belonging to is the non-club club. The most valuable tribe is a tribe of unusual suspects who can challenge your world-view, expose you to new ideas, and teach you something new. A tribe of unusual suspects can change the world if it is connected in purposeful ways.

It is easy to see the potential from enabling random collisions of unusual suspects. Just check out any social media platform.

Read the rest of…
Saul Kaplan: Random Collision Theory of Innovation

#TeamRP vs. #TeamJYB3: Fitness Challenge Degenerates Into Fierce Mudslinging

Fitness Challenge



#TeamRP calls me a rascal for sending him a gift basket of Kentucky candy for the holidays.

In the middle of our weight loss competition.

I apologize I’m just getting to the accusation now….I have been AWOL today and just now getting in. Loads of work to catch up on.

But my chief priority is victory over you in our weight loss competition.

To paraphrase Malcolm X, I will assure victory “By any means necessary.” I believe he may have used that phrase originally in a weight loss competition with MLK Jr but I may have my historical events confused.

Point is, in war, there are no rules. Just more candy baskets.

I’m glad you enjoyed the gift basket. But don’t think of it as mere gift “basket” (singular)

Think of it as more of an Advent Calendar. But an Advent Calendar that ends on the day you concede I win and you lose. I mean, that you concede that I lost more. I mean that you concede that in a competition to lose, I lost more. Or, whatever, you know what I’m trying to say.

Watch your mail. Daily!




I did NOT call you a rascal.

Here’s what I said (try this link for the full post):

John Y. Brown, III is a dirty, cheating snake-in-the-grass.  As well as a kind and generous friend.

AlfalfaA “rascal” is a cute little freckled boy with funny hair.

And by the way, you got the whole civil rights controversy wrong.

Malcolm X did most definitely not challenge MLK, Jr. to a fitness competition.

He challenged Gandhi.

And guess who won that won, SUCKA?!?!?!?!?

John Y’s Musings from the Middle: iSoap


We so live in an iWorld. iPads with iTunes and iPhones with iNews (the news as I want to read it).

The 70s were called by se the Me Decade. But the 2010 will likely be known as the iDecade.

Why do I say this?

I just left Walgreens because I was out of “Body Wash.”

I know. Look….I had used soap for 48 years and it worked fine . But soap wasn’t personal enough for me in our new iWorld. So when I was offered a chance to switch to something hipper and cooler sounding , like “Body Wash, ” I went for it. In retrospect, I was simply at a weak and susceptible point in my bodily hygiene regimen. But mostly looking for something more tailored to me and my generation than an old fashioned bar of soap could provide.

jyb_musingsBut I find myself standing in Walgreens tonight and taking over 5 minutes to pick out the “right” body wash for me–because now there are too many choices. There is Relax, Energy, High Energy, Sensitive, Vibrant, Extreme Comfort, Secret Wonderland, and many, many others.

And I think I picked the wrong one now to fit my mood tomorrow morning. I thought I would feel “vibrant” but now worry I may feel like “secret wonderland” –and I don’t have the right body wash for that mood.

Which made me wonder if maybe I never should have given up that simple yellow bar of Dial soap I used for 48 years.

Life was so much simpler prior to the iMovement.

Julie Rath: No Brainer Shirt and Pants Combinations

julie-rath-bio-photoWith business casual all the rage in many offices, the pairing of dress shirts and pants is a hot topic. In some ways, this is actually easier than putting together an outfit where you’re considering suit (or blazer and pants), shirt, tie, and sometimes pocket square patterns. But still, based on empirical data (a.k.a. what I see when hanging out in clients’ closets), a lot of people get it wrong. Below are 7 quick and easy points to keep in mind when selecting a business-casual dress shirt and pants combo.

1) Avoid wearing striped pants with just your dress shirt. This tends to look a little “off,” like you broke your striped suit apart and wore just the pants themselves.

2) If you broke rule #1 and are wearing striped pants with just a dress shirt, don’t worry I won’t hunt you down. Just promise me that your dress shirt isn’t striped too.


How to match your shirt to your pants: herringbone

3) If your pants have a pattern (plaid, windowpane, check, etc.), go with a solid shirt, and vice versa. Otherwise you border on looking clownish. Some fabrics are “tone-on-tone,” which means they have a subtle pattern to their weave, like a herringbone, but are still all one color. Fabrics like that read as solids and are perfectly fine to wear with patterns. See above how, viewed closely, there appears to be a pattern in the shirt, but overall it reads as a solid.

Read the rest of…
Julie Rath: No Brainer Shirt and Pants Combinations

How ‘Bout Dem Latkes?!? The Senate Minyan Has Another New Congregant.


As the Washington Post explains, our newest U.S. Senator, Brian Schatz — recently appointed by Hawaii Governor Neal Ambercrombie to fill the unexpired term of the recently deceased Danial Inouye — is a Member of the Tribe:

Schatz is married to architect Linda Kwok Scahtz, and according to his official biography, the two have a son and a daughter together. He lists his religious view as Jewish on his Facebook page.

(Click here to read the full profile.)

Well, pull over a new chair to the Senate minyan.  And there’s always room for more…

#TeamRP vs. #TeamJYB3 Fitness Challenge: J’ACCUSE!!!!





Just a few minutes ago, I returned to my office from my slightly extended Christmas holiday to find a huge brown UPS box on my desk.

After I dug through the styrofoam baubles, I pulled out the beautiful “Taste of Kentucky” gift basket pictured at left. It’s filled with delicious Kentucky Proud treats:  Red Hot Roasters organic coffee, a box of Simply Kentucky Fudge, a gift bag of Bauer’s Modjeskas, a Blue Monday candy bar from Ruth Hunt, and my favorite — a Derby Pie: basically, a pecan pie with chocolate chips and a hint of bourbon.

Probably my monthly allowance of calories in one basket.

While I am in the midst of a fitness challenge against #TeamJYB3, it is always important to take a break from a diet every now and then, especially during the holiday season.  Calculating the calories of just a few bites of the Derby Pie, I remembered that I hadn’t found a note identifying the kind, generous soul who would send me such a thoughtful gift.

I rooted through the box and found the card that had been displaced.  Check it out after the jump:

Read the rest of…
#TeamRP vs. #TeamJYB3 Fitness Challenge: J’ACCUSE!!!!

John Y’s Musings from the Middle: Planning

Thought for the day.

A friend admonished me for not planning well. She’s right. Up to a point.

The keys to any plan are to 1) plan ahead; 2) plan strategically and 3) execute that plan flawlessly.

If you can only do two of those three things, pick planning strategically and executing flawlessly. You don’t have time for the most thoughtful plan, but a strategic plan developed on the fly is better than no plan at all.

If you can only do one, there’s not much of a point. You could choose executing flawlessly a non-plan but that’s not really possible. You could choose creating a strategic plan but if you can’t execute it, what’s the point? And you could plan to plan, but why bother?

jyb_musingsHowever, if you are a “planner” and can only choose one, you’ll probably choose one anyway because planners like the illusion of being organized and often-times like to simply plan for planning’s sake. And that’s fine. If you are one of these types and not very flexible, pick whichever one of the three makes you most feel like you are actually doing something constructive and “planning” —since they are all equally useless. At least you’ll feel better about yourself and be less frantic about your non-plan.

On the other hand, if you can’t do any of them at all (and are cool with that), find me and we’ll hang out and find a way to have a better time than those crazy planners,

Just to spite them.

Of course, we don’t really want to spite them because we’ll eventually need their help in getting a ride back to wherever we started since we didn’t plan on having a car or write down the address of where we were staying or where we are going. So if you aren’t a planner, at least keep a planner nearby.


The Recovering Politician Bookstore


The RP on The Daily Show