February 14, 2008

Random Commuter Observations

As I trudged along from the metro station in the teeth of an icy wind this morning, I was musing again on the phenomenon that the coldest weather in winter comes after the winter solstice (and conversely, of course, that the dog days of August come well after the summer solstice).

Whenever I think about all this, I like to imagine the planet tipping this way and that about its axis, with great huge wodges of air slopping back and forth across its surface, not in sync with the Earth's motions, but in reaction to them.

Not that it makes me feel any warmer, of course. But I take a particular pleasure in the exercise of changing my perspective to what I suppose would be called the meta level. I find the mental imagery to be endlessly fascinating and gratifying.

So what does make me feel just a bit warmer this morning? Two things. One, I spotted the first of the daffodils breaking the surface in the shelter of the garden by our front walk. Two, pitchers and catchers report tomorrow.

Posted by Robert at February 14, 2008 09:20 AM | TrackBack

What's weird, Robbo, is that I was saying to my wife last night "When I hear the magic words 'pitchers and catchers report', then I'll start panicking that my fantasy baseball stats aren't done yet."

Background: each year, I do a big statistical analysis on my database of MLB players using Standard Deviations from the mean that takes me a few weeks to complete, and gives me my theoretical draft order for my fantasy baseball league.

The league I'm in is for statistical masochists, as it a 10*10 league (ten statistical categories for both offense and defense, where most leagues use 5). I've yet to finish higher than twelfth in it, and my wife complains about the amount of analysis I do each spring. I try to explain that the league is so difficult that the statistical analysis I do is what enables me to finish in twelfth (rather than fifteenth). (It also has given me a deep-seated hatred for all pitchers, because of their profound statistical inconsistency).

The guy who has won the league the last few years is a retired engineer who literally devotes his entire life to statistical analysis and research during baseball season. I don't even answer his calls anymore when he wants to make trades, because I know I going to get robbed blind.

I started about a week ago and and am about 3/4ths of the way done with pitchers (haven't started on position players). I felt I was making good progress.

Until now.

So thanks for that. :-)

Posted by: The Abbot at February 14, 2008 10:39 AM

I really feel you about the weather. Its gotten pretty cold here since the weekend. If you watched the Pro Bowl you know that the weather here was nice then, but now some clouds have been lingering...

Posted by: Big Mac w/ an Eggq at February 14, 2008 04:14 PM