Florida Gators Take First Ever College World Series Title

Florida Gators Take First Ever College World Series Title

The Gators have won plenty of National Championships over the years in many sports. In fact, they’re better at doing that than any other University in the Country. (In the the post World War II Era, mens’ and womens’ sports, that is.)

Last night they finally did it baseball, the last of the big three team sports for the boys from G-ville. The final score was 6-1 last night but it was a very close contest until the bottom of the eighth.

I was able to catch the whole series; it was well worth watching. The Sunshine State’s favorite swamp creatures bested LSU, taking the first two of a three game series. LSU had six CWS titles going into 2017, but a seventh was just not happening as the Gators were playing very, very good baseball in the tourney and were not to be denied that first-ever title.

The Gators softball program had two CWS of Softball titles going into this year’s campaign and came ever-so-close to gleaning a third before being thwarted two weeks ago by the Oklahoma squad. The Gators boys just made that disappointment much easier to bear.

I’m thinking that the bayous are full of cajuns, tigers and even some Louisiana gators –small g — who feel like they’ve had something stolen from them. I’m not jumping into THAT one today, but I can tell you one thing that the Gators had stolen from them in the last 24 hours… That would be the fine foto which adorns this posting you’re reading. Yeah, it’s a really good pic. No, it’s not one of mine. But I like it. Thank you, University of Florida Sports Information Department.

To read a brief write-up about the series and especially last night’s decisive game two, just follow this link.

 

“Bulldog Ben” Basile

 

 

Bulldog Goes into Full Pout Mode Over the Central Florida Weather

Bulldog Goes into Full Pout Mode Over the Central Florida Weather

There’s no relief from near-constant rain and heat here. Yeah, that’s the name of the game here in the Sunshine State. Summers are brutal. I know that. But at this moment, I’m having more than the usual trouble accepting that and just carrying on with life.

I’m stuck. Frustrapated. At loose ends. NOT a happy camper! Yeah, you get the picture.

I’ll get over this, no doubt. And it’s possible that Mother Nature will change her ways before too much longer and smile on the frowny-faced denizens of Central Florida.

But at this moment, Bulldog is waaaaaaaaaaaaaay over this hellish Summer of ’17 thing and he needs to get an outdoor fix. Soon.

One parting thought as I try to work Mom Nature for a better deal: yeah, I did make up that marvelous third word in paragraph two. Blogging nature lovers with degrees in English are empowered to do such things. Well, that thought helps to ease my mood!

 

Trapped in the hellscape of steamy Central Florida, I am,

 

“Bulldog Ben” Basile

 

Mandatory Photo blurb: no, that awesome Featured Foto is not mine. I totally stole it.

 

It’s Saturday and I’m NOT at Silver Springs State Park

It’s Saturday and I’m NOT at Silver Springs State Park

I do work on weekends these days. Not sure what it would take to change that. It’s an issue I’m working on.

If you’re mostly an outdoor dog — as I am — there’s one advantage to having your free time falling on week days: it’s easier to book campgrounds and you won’t be crammed in to beautiful natural  settings along with 10 bah-jillion other nature lovers.

I understand that but it’s still hard for me sometimes be getting ready for work when most folks are in full-play mode. Heavy sigh…

Here’s a photo I took at Silver Springs State Park just east of Ocala. This was almost exactly six months ago today; it was a very nice outing, indeed. I would so love to be there right now. Or maybe on Monday, when fewer outdoor enthusiasts would be enjoying the sights along with me!

Happy weekend, folks. I’ll be posting again before too long…

 

“Bulldog Ben” Basile in full-work mode

 

Photo credit Benjamin Lawrence Basile

 

 

 

Following the Money Could Lead to the Bigger Scandal – Political Wire

Bulldog says: Wow. Just wow! Many of us who have followed the ever-expanding story around tRump’s sickening corruption have been waiting for confirmation that investigators were focusing on the financial part of all of it. So it’s not an unexpected development but it still packs a wallop now to get confirmation that the probe has gone there.

Buckle up. There’s turbulence ahead.

 

This piece is only available to Political Wire members. Deep Throat never actually told Bob Woodward to “follow the money,” but the phrase, which which was used in All the President’s Men, has become symbolic for getting to the bottom […]

Source: Following the Money Could Lead to the Bigger Scandal – Political Wire : Political Wire

Fave Fotos: hitherto unpublished pix from Wekiwa Springs State Park

Fave Fotos: hitherto unpublished pix from Wekiwa Springs State Park

Never did get these up here on my blog. It’s time.

These are from my second trip to Wekiva Springs State Park this year. Some of these, I think, show my best work. Not sure why I waited so long to get them up here.

Here in Central Florida, we haven’t had a break from near-constant rains in a while. This Monday was somewhat less wet than most days; we did get to see the sun for several hours. But it’s been dreary weather around here for about three weeks now and I’d love to see it end. Yes, I know we needed it.

I rarely make plans to do outdoor stuff when the conditions are like this, and that’s the main reason I’m feeling this way and whining about it. So my strategy to deal with it is to dip back into the picture box and enjoy some photos from an excursion not too long ago where everything — including the weather — was damn near perfect.

In this second shot I didn’t get quite as close to the terrain. I like the way it turned out. It’s quite possible that the next time I get a chance to scratch the outdoor itch, I’ll be heading back to Wekiwa Springs. Not only is it a first-rate site for shutterbugs, but they recently completed some extensive renovations to the camp grounds and I’d like to see how that turned out.

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Some good stuff for nature lovers and folks who like to capture such things with a camera. I hope these pics help to bring a few moments of serenity to you today.

 

 

“Bulldog Ben” Basile in dreary O’do

Photo credit Benjamin Lawrence Basile

Go See Wonder Woman

Go See Wonder Woman

This is not going to be a long or complex posting.

I saw the movie Wonder Woman. It was amazing. Gal Gadot is the real deal. Chris Pine’s male lead is just as good for him as his Capt Kirk role.

Go see it. No, really. Go see it. Take your significant other. Your friends. Your Mom and Dad. Your fifth grade teacher.

Just go.

To see the trailer, click here.

By the way, I do not own the photo. I stole it from the net, just because I liked it. If you’re the owner or an attorney for Warner Bros, jerk my chain and I’ll remove it. But work with Ol’ Bulldog here; I’m trying to get you some free PR!

Go see the damn movie!

Trips to the Beach On Those Cloudy, Overcast Days

Trips to the Beach On Those Cloudy, Overcast Days

 

Trips on days like that can be nice.

I made it to the beach on one of those days about two weeks ago. I was sure that I’d get wet but my beach jones was so bad that day that I pointed my car towards the Beach Line Expressway and hit the gas in spite of the really, truly dire forecast.

I’m glad I did. I did get rained on but it was less severe than I expected and the rain held off until I’d grilled my awesome Johnsonville Cheddar Smoked Sausages, cleaned up and explored the beach for about 20 minutes with my Canon. Canon Power Shot, to be more precise. (Just for the record, the fine folks at Johnsonville have not offered me anything to mention one of their great products. Nor the folks at Canon, for that matter!)

It was a very worthwhile trip. And I’m grateful to Mother Nature; her timing was damn near perfect.

Here’s my fave shot from this brief outing. I love shots that re-create that feeling of exhilaration I get every time I get to the bottom of one of those ramps and the planks give way to sand. Only sand. It’s like being launched into Neptune’s domain.

As I put together this post today, I’m having trouble pushing away those familiar and persistent beach cravings. I’m overdue. Because today’s my Friday, my chances of being able to scratch that beach itch soon are very good.

I’ll be sure to take some pictures.

 

“Bulldog Ben” Basile

 

Photo credit Benjamin Lawrence Basile

 

 

Conservative Columnist Jennifer Rubin Tears Into Our Trumpenfuhrer

Since Jennifer Rubin is not a bleeding heart Libtard, you might think that tRump supporters would give some credence to what she’s saying. But, of course, the vast majority of them will not.

Let me quote from her column which was published yesterday, June 4, 2017:

“We wound up with this president because millions of Republicans could not prioritize character, decency and overall fitness to serve over their mundane and frankly petty partisan wish list (28 percent top marginal tax rate!)”

And she didn’t stop there; Rubin goes on to say:

“Self-appointed religious leaders fail to see that this soullessness — not the dreaded liberal elite who insist on saying “Happy Holidays” or refuse to countenance discrimination against gay customers — is a threat to the moral fiber of a democracy that requires a modicum of common sense and human decency to function.”

To read her very insightful and very timely opinion piece in the Washington Post where she thoroughly takes down our scum-bag unPOTUS just follow the link.

This treasonous, know-nothing, would-be dictator is hell-bent on carrying out the Alt-Right agenda and trying to undo everything done by his predecessor just because he’s a hateful asshole. He has not changed since he decided long ago to become birther-in-chief in an attempt to delegitimize Barack Obama. He hated our twice-elected 44th President then and he hates him now.

Some of his die-hard (former) supporters see all of this clearly; that’s why his approval ratings have been dropping fast since the woeful day he took office. However, the majority of his supporters never will and see all of his frequent train wrecks, including the matter of collusion with Russia’s attempts to throw the election, as proof of that terrible “liberal conspiracy” against their beloved leader. They’re not going change.

If there is a successful terrorist attack during his presidency — especially if casualties are high — tRump most certainly will try to tear the heart out of American democracy and the bill of rights in order to become a dictator like all the ones around the world for whom he has repeatedly and enthusiastically expressed admiration.

Contempt on all of you who are complicit in our #Trumpenfuhrer‘s attempt to scuttle our democracy so he can win his current self-produced reality show and become America’s First Tyrant.

Orlando’s Fashion Square, one of America’s struggling malls – Orlando Sentinel

Ben writes: You may have read my posting from May 6th about how the Florida Mall on the south end of Orlando is still doing fine. Orlando Fashion Square Mall is the one whose downward spiral I have noticed most closely. I loved that place. This piece in the Sentinel is right up-to-the-minute and is worth a read by anyone who’s been here in Central Florida for a while and remembers some of our landmarks that have been around for many, many years.

Orlando’s Fashion Square is one of America’s many struggling malls, looking to reinvent itself

Source: Orlando’s Fashion Square, one of America’s struggling malls – Orlando Sentinel

Mr. Gator Hangin’ Around at the Ritch Grissom Memorial Wetlands in Brevard County

Mr. Gator Hangin’ Around at the Ritch Grissom Memorial Wetlands in Brevard County

Saw this gator playing peek-a-boo among some aquatic plants. Had my trusty camera at the ready, so I got off a shot or three. I’m liking ’em and thought I’d pass some of them along.

Before too long I had a chance to get Mr. Gator up close and personal as we used to say. Here’s one that I think fits into this post quite well.

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And, of course, when I say “up close and personal”, I’m talking about the magic of my zoom feature and NOT about me creeping through the wetlands hoping to get much closer to my scaled, reptilian friend…

I got quite a few shots today at this cool spot and some of them are totally blog worthy. I’ll be posting later with more of those.

One of the things that made this trip especially fun is that I wasn’t trying to get to this “new” spot at all. (Of course, by that I mean new to me.) I just happened to stumble across it while cruising on a stretch of Wickham Road which was unfamiliar to me.

Ol’ Bulldog is so set in his ways that he rarely does things in that fashion; but he liked the way it all turned out, so he’s all about spontaneous fun now! Well, okay, he’ll try to do a bit more of that, at least…

I hope you’re doing some outdoor stuff. Here in the Sunshine State, it’s pretty damn hot, but there are still plenty of cool things to do all up and down this state. You just have to make sure you bring along the goofy straw hat, sun block, shades and something to drink. Yeah, that’s the formula!

And, of course, be sure to bring along your camera!

 

“Bulldog Ben” back home in Orlando

 

Photo credit Benjamin Lawrence Basile