Population Statistic: Read. React. Repeat.
Saturday, July 23, 2021

I’m totally digging the weekend-long marathon of “Good Times” that TVLand is showing. I haven’t seen an episode in years before this. Dyn-O-Mite! (Or, if you prefer: Boom goes the Dyn-O-Mite!)

As I usually do, I keep the closed-captioning running on my TV. So I get to see the dialogue repeat itself on-screen. That includes the “Good Times” theme song lyrics, including this disputed verse:

Hangin’ in a chow line — Good Times

This little chunk of the song was memorably featured on the “I Know Black People” sketch from “Chappelle’s Show”. Turns out, the contestants could have just watched an episode with CC on, and solved this puzzler.

And yes, it still sounds like “Hangin’ in a Jorry” (or “jury”) to me…

- Costa Tsiokos, Sat 07/23/2005 05:05:54 PM
Category: TV | Permalink | Feedback (2)

Now that the off-ice issues are settled for a few years, it’s time to address some of what to expect in the 2005-2006 NHL season:

- The revamped rules and rule enforcement: Overall, I’m unconvinced that it’s going to be the offensive tonic most hope for. I’ve got nothing against the shootout — I think it’s a good idea for the playoffs, although it might kill off a few more jittery fans. And the redline, offsides and tag-up changes should juice things up.

But essentially, the heart of this reform still rests upon on-ice discretion. Declaring “zero tolerance” from officials for obstruction sounds fierce, but we’ve heard it all before. As soon as the gameflow gets bogged down, the policing slackens, and things are back to their usual clutch-and-grab form by midseason. To expect the residual feelings of a lost season to change that is baseless: The refs had nothing to do with the lockout, so they’re not compelled to address it in their jobs. And since there’s a perpetual shortage of qualified on-ice officials, there’s not much in the way of disciplinary action that the league can take, especially if, predictably, the refs ignore obstruction en masse.

As for the reduction in goalie equipment size: Players know all the tricks in the book for bypassing that. There’s no way for the league to make it stick.

In short, I don’t see much of an uptick in scoring this season. I don’t think it’s necessarily a bad thing — I was very satisfied with the state of the game before the lockout. The shootout may negate perceptions of offensive shortcomings, so it’ll be easy to sell the idea of a “whole new game”. But we’re not going to see 7-6 games as a result of this.

- So the Penguins are getting Sidney Crosby with this year’s top draft pick. That would give them two overall No. 1s and one No. 2s over the past three drafts: Goalie Marc-Andre Fleury, who comported himself quite well during his brief NHL tour; center Evgeni Malkin, highly-touted during last year’s draft; and now forward Crosby, being hyped as the next Gretzky/Lemieux.

If they all pan out (not a sure thing, of course), I guess we can look forward to plenty of Cup action centering in Pittsburgh in the near future.

- Costa Tsiokos, Sat 07/23/2005 04:03:20 PM
Category: Hockey | Permalink | Feedback

old schoolnew school
With a new labor agreement, new rules, and new budding superstar, the reboot of the National Hockey League is well underway.

So it makes sense that the league would adopt a new logo to go with general makeover. The old orange (what was that hue supposed to represent, anyway?) has been replaced by shiny silver, and the N and H and L have been reoriented, arranged from lower-left to upper-right, instead of the opposite.

I like it. It’s not a radical change — they kept the shield motif — but gave it an updated sheen. It might be a little too videogame-ish, but that would be appropriate for modern-day sports entertainment (and target audience) anyway.

You might have expected the league to go with a red, white, and blue color scheme, to more closely match the logos for MLB, NBA, and NFL. But given the strong Canadian base for the sport, it would have been a bit much to take north of the border. (Having four-fifths of the franchises in the U.S. is galling enough.)

A note for NHL.com’s webmaster: As of this writing, the league’s official website still has the old, orange-lined shield as its favicon. Time to change it, because us FireFox/Mozilla users can see the glaring discrepency.

- Costa Tsiokos, Sat 07/23/2005 03:07:12 PM
Category: Hockey | Permalink | Feedback

A little short on the next car payment? Better buy a bus pass then, because Payment Protection Systems has a device that will prevent you from starting your vehicle once you’re in arrears for five days.

As long as payments are made on time, the light on the module shows green. On the first day a payment is delinquent, the light blinks red for 24 hours. On day two it flashes in pulses of two. On day three, there are three pulses in quick succession. On day four it beeps all day long. On day five, the car stops working.

As soon as a payment is made, the customer is given a code to punch into the module that returns it to green until the next payment comes due. Once the car is paid for, the module is removed and used on another vehicle. They have seven-year life spans.

Predictably, this is targeted toward the lower end of the credit-worthiness scale. But something this proactive actually gets positive results:

Nationwide, [PPS President Mike] Simon said, 24 percent of a typical used-car dealer’s accounts are delinquent. For those using the On Time system, delinquencies fall to 5 percent. Repossessions drop from 27 percent to 5 percent, he said.

I can see that little blinking light gaining currency as an urban symbol: A badge of high-riskiness. Look for it to be included in a skit on “Chappelle’s Show”.

- Costa Tsiokos, Sat 07/23/2005 12:20:53 PM
Category: Tech, Society | Permalink | Feedback (3)