Friday, December 28, 2007

Bryan Payton to Terry Hoeppner: "We're Going to Play 13!"

Hoosier Bryan Payton's comments in college football blog of The New York Times, The Quad.
The New York Times
A Hoosier Reflects
By Bryan Payton
November 22, 2007

It has been quite a year for the Indiana football team. In June, Hoosiers Coach Terry Hoeppner died after an 18-month fight with brain tumors. Earlier this month, the Hoosiers (7-5), now coached by Hoeppner’s former assistant Bill Lynch, became bowl eligible for the first time since 1994 with a victory over Ball State.

Indiana running back Bryan Payton has written for The Quad before, reflecting on the impact Hoeppner had on his players and the legacy he left.

Today, Payton takes a look at the Hoosiers’ season, from early practices in 100-degree heat to Austin Starr’s winning kick in last Saturday’s 27-24 victory over Purdue in the annual Bucket Game. This Thanksgiving Day essay is offered instead of The Quad’s usual morning links.

By Bryan Payton
Being bowl eligible is an amazing accomplishment for this football team. After everything that we’ve been through it would have been easy to lose games and make excuses about how emotionally exhausted or distracted we were. The thing is, we knew that’s not what Coach Hep would have done. That’s not what he would want. Hep was the ultimate role model in showing us how to handle adversity. That is part of what defines us as people. Becoming bowl eligible is dedicated to him. We’re finishing what he started; we’re going to play 13!

The regular season has gone by so fast. It seems like just yesterday we working through team drills in 100-degree heat. One of the things my teammate and friend Terrance Turner said after the win against Purdue was, “Camp was hot!” I laughed, but what he said has stuck in my mind.

When things get hard it’s good to remember how hot camp was or how we felt after our eighth gasser, or how cold and dark it was when we awoke at 5:30 a.m. for winter conditioning.

All of that was intended to make us successful, and to help us ultimately earn a trip to and win a bowl game.

In a regular season of big plays, record-breaking feats and clutch performances, I’ve had the most fun I’ve ever had playing football. I think most of my teammates would tell you the same thing.

My favorite play of the season was, of course, Austin Starr’s game-winning kick in the Bucket Game. But a close second was Kellen Lewis’s “pass to himself” and flip into the end zone against Iowa. Priceless.

From opening night against Indiana State to the amazing sellout against Purdue, there was no doubt in our minds that we would achieve our goal of “Playing 13.” I may never experience a moment like what went down against Purdue. The atmosphere was amazing, “The Rock” was packed and the weather was perfect. We were more ready than ever before because the stakes were high, but not as high as our confidence level.

I guess it was fitting for the game to come down to a game-winning kick. The crowd rushed the field and we were so happy that many of us simply cried. The scene in the locker room was one of jubilation. We couldn’t contain ourselves from dancing, singing, crying, hugging each other and praying. There were so many people in the locker room. Everyone wanted to be a part of the celebration, and I don’t blame them. It had been a long time coming.

Fittingly, Jane Hoeppner was the person who placed the block “I” on the Bucket. It was a Kodak moment. She deserved to be involved in our celebration. She is our heart. She is everything that Coach Hep embodied. The win was dedicated to her and her family.

I will never forget that game for as long as I live. I will never forget all of those who played a part in this season, whether the person is a player or not. Saturday, Nov. 17, was the day we accomplished the goal Coach Hep set for us. We now wait to figure out where we are going and heck, we might as well win the bowl game!

It’s all for you, Coach Hep. We love you and miss you. You’re in our hearts forever.
Earlier this summer I saw an interesting story in the Indianpolis Business Journal about the proposed commuter train feasibility study, which would, theoretically, connect large parts of the Hoosier State in a logical way that, frankly, should've been done years and years ago.
Like before I ever even got there in '79, considering how many medium-sized Hoosier cities seem to be just a couple of hours from one another.
If such a train had existed back then, it might've made me a little bit more eager to travel on weekends to parts of the state I never visited, especially in the NW towards Fort Wayne.
It certainly would've been fun to have been able to visit places with friends for a long weekend if I could just catch a train back when I felt like leaving, and not been dependent on a friend's driving ability after a very long weekend home, with us leaving late Sunday afternoon.
It'd be an understatement to say that it'd have been a huge boon for college students all over the state of Indiana on sporting weekends in the Fall and Winter, to catch ballgames.
Certainly would've made the prospect of going up to South Bend or West Lafayette much more appealing!

In that same issue as the discussion of a commuter train within the state was another nice piece in the IBJ on IU head football coach Bill Lynch, which I commend to you now, just a little more than 72 hours before IU plays Oklahoma State in Tempe at its first Bowl game in a VERY long time.
In retrospect, it speaks well to the wisdom of IU's having named him head coach after the passing of Terry Hoeppner.

Titled "Lynch isn’t Hep," but he’s a coach you can root for, it's written by Bill Benner, who's now with the Indy Convention & Visitors Association and a former sports columnist for The Indianapolis Star.

The telling comment, which really got me, was this one:
"I called Lynch on the telephone to do the predictable column about dealing with adversity and losing. He couldn’t have been more cooperative or open. His tone was one of determination, not self-pity. He blamed no person or circumstance. It was on him. It says something about a man who, in victory, deflects the credit but, in failure, accepts all responsibility. Most of all, in the thrill of a high or in the depths of a low, Bill Lynch was one and the same..."

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Dolphins' media/PR folks cluelessness with Parcells presser is s.o.p.

Just sent an excerpt of this email to some veteran sports journalists up in New York whom I read devoutly -and respect immensely- whom I also occasionally drop an email to, because they're straight-shooters when it comes to the facts and behind-the-scenes' forces of current American sports TV and personalities.
This has some additional material -and tangents- to buttress my points, which should be fairly obvious.

It's instructive that when I emailed this to them at 2:35 p.m. this afternoon, that the Dolphins PR folks were still so behind-the-curve that they had yet to inform WIOD radio and the Dolphins' radio broadcast rights holder, WQAM, that the Bill Parcells presser would be (televised) at 6 p.m., which ESPN News was reporting.

What, South Florida news media being scooped again on a Miami-based story?
Just more of what we've gotten used to over the years he said glumly.
Thursday December 27th, 2007

Dear X and Y:

Just wanted to shoot you both a line and share some thoughts you might find of interest, as a media friend just called me from out at Dolphins HQ in Davie, quite exasperated, where she's been waiting and waiting... for the grand unveiling of Bill Parcells as the Dolphins' VP.
(I'm against the Parcells move, think he won't make it four years, but...)

She called an hour ago on the very day that's been anticipated ever since last week's big announcement, and yet, typically, the Dolphins are SO dis-organized, that their PR folks are refusing to tell the assembled media -whom in this town, are uniformly puppets of the worst sort to begin with, with absolutely no bark or backbone- what time the press conference will
start. Yeah, that's very professional.

While it's the kind of thing that most people who care about the Dolphins will never ever find out about, it really speaks volumes for why I've wanted Huizenga to sell the team -for years.

Not least of all because if he sells the team, the stadium and the adjacent land he owns, the Marlins stadium could, theoretically, be near the current stadium and the FL Turnpike, I-95 and starting in about 2012, near a Miami-Dade Metrorail station that connects it to points south, instead of at the Orange Bowl site in Little Havana, far from all of that, as well as the
large Broward fan base for a team with a piddling fan base to begin with.

(And, stuck with perhaps the worst ownership in MLB in
Jeffrey Loria.
His intelligence and marketing prowess are perhaps best reflected by the team having had their team store being located in Little Havana -see the "Marlins en Miami" cite below- instead of being near modern suburban shopping malls.

You know, where people
actually live and work and have disposable income, like they did in the days before and since the Christmas holidays, at Dadeland Mall, Aventura Mall, Pembroke Lakes Mall or Sawgrass Mall...
SouthBeachHoosier marketing advice to Marlins: How about a small storefront Marlins store along Brickell Avenue to capture the professional crowd at lunch time, in-between bites or after work?

Yeah, that's the Marlins marketing genius for you, continuing to propagate the failed myth of a vast army of Hispanic baseball fans in Little Havana just itching for the chance to come up to Chez Huizenga for a Marlin ballgame. Or ten.
This gets lip service despite all relevant marketing research showing those Marlin fans rarely attend games, even if they really do know the team inside-and-out well-enough to argue over who should be the Marlins lead-off man.
Here's some breaking news on who really counts:
fans who actually show up.

Some time soon in this space, I'll tell you about how it was done -right and wrong- up in the Washington, D.C. area with the Baltimore Orioles team store, in the perfect downtown location
of 17th Street, N.W. and K Street, just blocks from the The White House.
One of my friends was the store manager there before I left, and that's where I first saw the video of the Twin Towers coming down for the first time on 9/11, while walking home to Arlington after being told to evacuate from my office along Pennsylvania Avenue, across the street from the FBI and Department of Justice, after the Pentagon was hit by American Airlines Flight 11.)

How can the Dolphins screw-up something as simple to set-up as a press conference?
Well, sadly for Dolphin fans like me, who grew-up as a season ticket holder in the successful early '70's, and know from professionalism, the forensic evidence for the decline is both overwhelming and self-evident.

Naturally, in the era of an interactive web, the Dolphins have absolutely nothing on their team website about the press conference, either, even though everyone is talking about it in advance.



P.S. One of my former housemates at IU, a cute brunette Alpha Chi from Indy, dated Cam Cameron for a while when he was the back-up QB at IU behind Babe Laufenberg.

Marlins En Miami Store: The Marlins en Miami Store is a full service ticket office and merchandise store. It is located in the heart of the Hispanic community at 3701 S.W. 8th Street. The main focus of the office is to serve as a lasting presence for the Club within this area and service the community by offering general information in Spanish, selling tickets, merchandise and hosting special events.

In Season Hours:
Mon-Fri 9:00 a.m.- 5:00 p.m.
Sat. 10am to 4pm.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Jan. 14th Broward Legislative Delegation Public Meeting in Hollywood

State Senator Steven Geller, the Broward County Legislative Delegation, along with State Representatives Joseph Gibbons, Evan Jenne and Elaine Schwartz will hold a joint Town Hall meeting with their constituents. That's y-o-u.

Bring your wit and wisdom, loaded or rhetorical questions, and any post-holiday venomous
feelings you've got left over.

Perhaps you can even get some face time on local Miami TV news that night by asking, early on in the proceedings, why they allowed their visceral hatred for touch-screen voting booths to be tied into a clunker of a bill moving the Democratic & GOP Presidential Primaries to January 29th. That would be a nice start.

The primary where your Democratic vote is pure "beauty contest," with zero practical effect on delegate status.

I'll be posting some interesting talking points and prospective questions here as the meeting draws close, and they will be the that'll leave little wiggle room for evading.

My favorite kind!

Where: City Of Hollywood Commission Chamber, Room 219,

Date: Monday, January 14, 2008

Time: 7:00 PM To 9:00 P.M.

Monday, December 24, 2007

Excellent overview of Lute Olson and future of Arizona basketball

Yesterday during halftime of the Dolphins eventual loss to the Patriots, I came across Paola Boivin of The Arizona Republic's excellent overview of the recent news surrounding Lute Olson and his forthcoming divorce from his politically active wife, Christine, the tricky ethical issues involved in public discussion of the matter -while he draws $750K while on-leave- and the prospects for the Arizona Wildcat basketball program, regardless of whether Olson returns to coach the team.

My original post on this subject from December 8th is:

Cats' basketball future after Olson looks bright By Paola Boivin, December 23, 2007

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Upcoming FDOT meeting in Hollywood re U.S.-1 improvements

Though this is a FDOT meeting, it may also be my best early chance in 2008 of dropping some heavy lumber on the City of Hollywood and it's phony claim to being a "transit-oriented" city, by laying some disturbing but true facts on the assembled FDOT officials, and watching their reaction. And the audience's.

My prediction, three weeks prior?
Well, the FDOT officials will initially feign surprise, but the audience will nod in agreement.
And wait 'till I lay into the FDOT officials about all the bad/missing signage on major Hollywood byways, which could hardly be more obvious.
For instance, at the intersection of west-bound A1A and Hallandale Beach Blvd., the dividing line on A1A between Hallandale Beach and Hollywood.
That's when the buck-passing will begin in earnest!

FDOT To Discuss Improvements to U.S. 1 in Hollywood

District: Four

Meeting Type: Meeting

Date: Thursday, January 10, 2008

Time: 4:00 pm to 7:00 pm

Location Name: Fred Lippman Multi-Purpose Center

Street Address: 2030 Polk Street

City: Hollywood, FL 33020

Directions: Directions to this meeting site

Purpose: The Florida Dept. of Transportation (FDOT) will hold a plans to complete the following improvements on Federal Highway/U.S.1 from north of Young Circle to south of Sheridan Street:

Mill and repave the existing pavement;
Upgrade sidewalks;Improve isolated drainage locations;
Upgrade roadway signs within the project limits;
Install pedestrian countdown signals at all signalized intersections;
Install video detection for all traffic movements at all signalized intersections;
Place new landscaping throughout the project limits;
andInstall irrigation system for existing and proposed landscaping.

Construction is expected to being in spring 2009 and to be completed in approximately one year. The expected construction cost is $2.4 million.

Representatives from FDOT will be available at this meeting to answer your questions and listen to your concerns.
The meeting will have an information openhouse format. No formal presentation will be made.

Public participation is solicited without regard to race, color, national origin, age, sex, religion, disability or family status.
Persons who require special accommodations under the Americans with Disabiliities Act or persons who require translation services (free of charge) should contact the project manager listed below at least seven days prior to the meeting.

Primary Contact: James Hughes, P.E., Project Manager
Primary Phone: 954-777-4419
Primary E-Mail:

Additional Contact: FDOT District Four Public Information Office
Additional Phone: 954-777-4090
Additional E-mail:
Expires: 1/11/2008

What place is this LA Times sub-header describing? HB?

Was going thru my daily cache of email this afternoon while watching the IU-Coppin State basketball game on the Big Ten Network, and my eye caught this intriguing sub-heading on a Robyn Dixon story in the daily Los Angeles Times email I receive full of stories from all sections of the newspaper.
"Everywhere you travel in ... there is evidence of decline and absurdities that would be comical if they weren't so tragic."

All I could think of after seeing that interesting turn of phrase was that it could very well be the sub-heading on my topper at my other blog, HallandaleBeachBlog.

Almost as if I were an archaeologist going through ruins of an ancient city, since it pretty well describes the town to a veritable "T." Is it Hallandale Beach or ?
See for yourself.,0,7193858.story?coll=la-tot-topstories&track=ntothtml

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Follow-up to Sean Conway blog/First Amendement story

Daily Business Review reporter Jordana Mishory has an excellent follow-up in today's paper regarding the latest news regarding Broward County judicial blogger Sean Conway and the Florida Bar's investigation of HIM, after his posted blog comments about Broward Circuit Judge Cheryl Alemán, who is under investigation for her professional demeanor.
Or, rather the lack of same.

Conway was the subject of my post last Thursday.
Mishory's story, Freedom of Speech Lawyer's rights qustioned in state investigation

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Upcoming workshop on FLL People Mover; Google's Street Views; OB Beach Bash

Received this Broward County email the other day about an upcoming meeting in three weeks regarding a proposed People Mover System between Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood Int'l Airport and Port Everglades.
Yes, something which, much as I hate repeating myself, like so many things in South Florida, would already be up and running -and working successfully!- if this were a very different kind of area.

Well, assuming I'm entirely out of my college football Bowl game-induced coma by then, I'll likely be at this Broward meeting on the 10th, ready, willing and able to pepper somebody with questions.

For instance, to start with the most obvious question, will this interface with a future train station on the FEC tracks, per the SFECC meetings I've attended in Hollywood and Aventura, meetings which were full of people wanting this to become a reality as soon as possible?
You know, for residents who'd prefer to simply hop a train near their home near US-1, in both Broward and Miami-Dade counties, to take advantage of easier access and cheaper fares than what MIA-based airlines offer, esp on Southwest Airlines?
Smart people who don't want to pay $ just so their car can take a mini-vacation, in an airport-affiliated parking lot where it's liable to be nicked by somebody wrestling their suitcase out of their car in the next parking space, just inches away from yours?

Background info on the county's plan was found at the Broward County Annual Report Fiscal Year 2006's transportation section
which states:
Port Everglades and Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport officials are in the third year of a study to find ways to effectively move cruise passengers between the two facilities. To date, $4 million has been committed to look at long-range alternatives to link the airport and port. Among the many alternatives being considered are a people mover, which could utilize a raised dedicated guideway betweenthe port and airport.

Other odds and ends:
If I didn't know any better, judging by this story, I'd almost think that L.A. mayor Antonio Villaigrosa thought he lived in South Florida, with his policy of corporate cronyism along the lines of the Vladimir Putin/Mara Giulianti crony capitalism model.

L.A. mayor lines up donors for favorite causes
Villaraigosa has plenty of pet projects, and entities with business before the city have been giving generously to them.
by David Zahniser of the Los Angeles Times,0,3566265.story?coll=la-tot-topstories&track=ntothtml

Yesterday's Boston Globe had an interesting update on news about Google's Street View project, which I've been following for a bit now:
For more info, see
Video Google's "Street View" makes its Boston debut

They already have it set up for South Beach, and if some different people were running things up in Hollywood, perhaps in the not-too distant future, they'd have it there, too.
That is, AFTER they get some bus shelters at Young Circle, which I remind you, is only the busiest transit point in all of SE Broward.

Nearly a year after The Arts Park at Young Circle road construction has concluded, the area still lacks a single bus shelter, much less, an info kiosk with schedule and route information for all the many riders of mass transit there, day and night, rain or shine, heat and humidity.
Not residents who need to be persuaded to use mass transit by Broward Transit's full-page ads in the Sun-Sentinel, but rather people who already use it.
This, in a city like Hollywood that, typically, already thinks it's transit-oriented according to Hollywood Commissioner Dick Blattner. It's ridiculous.

Last Friday afternoon I spoke to someone I know at the Broward County Govt. HQ bldg. on Andrews Avenue, someone very much tuned in to the latest news about all things political and policy in the county.
More importantly here, someone who was also quite familiar with my own particular concerns and take on the way things are done around here -when they're done at all.
When I brought up the old sore subject of bus shelters, which I had mentioned at the Broward County Transit Forum at the Broward Convention Center, which rattleded Commissioner Lois Wexler, specifically, as it relates to both Hallandale Beach and Hollywood's rather disastrous management of them, my friend chimed in that based on everything they knew and had heard, essentially, Mayor Giulianti has next-to-no interest in getting shelters there, despite how self-evident the need is.
Apparently, so I was told, it's really too downscale for her tastes.

A few weeks ago, I spoke to somebody at the Hollywood city manager's office about this subject, and while they were very civil on the phone, they couldn't actually offer up even a guess as to when the necessary shelters would actually be up there. If they go up.
That speaks volumes about the way things are in Hollywood right now, and why yours truly would like to see big changes in leadership up there come the January 29th election.

Getting back to Street View for a sec, the Top 15 Street View sightings, as of May, are at:

Speaking of infrastructure...
But seriously, I've been meaning to post something about privatization for a bit, and especially since I first read an excellent overview of the subject in Business Week in May titled, "Roads To Riches, Why investors are clamoring to take over America's highways, bridges, and airports—and why the public should be nervous" by Emily Thornton.

Per this subject, there's a lot of controversy back in Indiana over the moves that Gov. Mitch Daniels has made in that regard in his first term.
Most specifically, regarding the Indiana Tollway, which may even affect the gubernatorial election there next year, since it gets to basic notions of what the role of the state should be, policy-wise, in the 21st century.

Speaking not of the Tollway specifically, but the broader topic, is it a hopelessly old-fashioned notion for the state to do something for residents that could be done for them cheaper, more efficiently and faster by private enterprise, just because they always have in the past?

(If you're a regular reader, there's no point in me mentioning again having spoken to Democrat Jill Long Thompson quite a few times over the past 20 years. Jill's currently got a big lead for the Dem gubernatorial nomination in the Hoosier state.)

Oddly enough, though I don't think I look like either one of them, when I lived in the D.C, area, people used to walk up to me -esp in Georgetown for some odd reason- and mistake me for either Mitch Daniels or Vice President Dan Quayle's resident genius on hand, David Frum.
They always seemed SO disappointed when I told them they were mistaken!

I'll have a post in another day or so about the Orange Bowl's Beach Bash not being convenient and fun, since for the second year in a row, it will be held in that bastion of daytime fun, downtown Miami, instead of its four-year home, Hollywood Beach.
As a consequence, it's no longer a Beach Bash but a Fan Fest.
See my July post for more info on the Beach Bash, formerly one of the true highlights of the year.


Public Workshop on Project Development and Environment Study Scheduled January 10, 2008

12/14/2007 2:33:21 PM

DATE: December 14, 2007

CONTACT: Ellen Kennedy, Manager of Corporate & Community Relations

PHONE: 954-468-3508

WHO: Broward County Port Everglades and Aviation Departments

WHAT: Project Development and Environment (PD&E) Study Public Workshop Public input is requested for the PD&E Study of a Broward County Intermodal
Center and People Mover System between Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood Int'l
Airport and Port Everglades.

WHEN: Thursday, January 10, 2008

WHERE: Broward County African-American Research Library & Cultural Center,
Auditorium, 2650 NW 6th Street (Sistrunk Blvd.), Fort Lauderdale, Florida

TIME: 6:00 p.m. Information and exhibits 7:00 p.m. Presentation and Q&A

WHY: The Intermodal Center will provide a regional transportation hub to connect
transit users to the Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport (FLL) and the Port Everglades (Seaport). The People Mover will offer a high capacity system to provide efficient access to FLL, to the Seaport and between FLL and the Seaport for regional users, employees and air/sea patrons. The goal is to alleviate road congestion on the limited access roads between the two facilities and facilitate the need for efficient freight, cargo and petroleum movement out of the regionally significant port.

Members of the project consulting team and Broward County Port Everglades and Aviation Department staff will share project information and answer questions regarding the project.

CONTACT: Carmen Ayala, MTM Partners 954-620-7044 or via email

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Best sports headline of the year: Portuguese men at war as Ronaldo hits back at Mourinho

Meant to post it at the time but unless something completely extraordinary happens in the next two weeks, the best sports headline of the year was this one from April 27 in The Times of London: Portuguese men at war as Ronaldo hits back at Mourinho

That 1-0 Everton-Chelsea game was by far the best game I've seen this year.,,12306,00.html

Years worth of good photos of Premiership matches are at WireImage:,d&sr=1801&cl=3&ci=403

Earlier that same week, I saw a large truck rig driving thru Hollywood whose cabin roof was painted simply enough: "Gracias a Dios, Maradona, Argentina." (I couldn't help but wonder how many other people who saw that truck got the gist of that.)
I suppose that I should add that the area near where I live in South Florida has a large supply of Argentine emigres, and not just because of The Knife Argentine Steak House restaurant on Hallandale Beach Blvd. and US-1.

The flavorful smoke emanating from there now almost negates the smell of all the horses that have arrived recently for the opening of Gulfstream Park, which opens in 17 days on January 3rd.

Tonight at midnight, assuming the Redskins at Giants NBC-TV game is over, I'll be watching the Arsenal at Chelsea match from earlier this afternoon on FSC, and then tape the Premier League Fan Zone version of the game Monday afternoon from 5:30-7:00 p.m. to watch later in the evening.
I'm sure it'll be the usual fierce play between the Gunners and the Blues that's not unlike the Redskin-Eagles games, just without a "Bodybag game."

I've really become quite a fan of the Fan Zone show over the past few months, whose surprisingly simple concept of pairing one knowledgable-but-very-opinionated fan from each team in a small press box at the stadium, while doing a running ad lib commentary of what's going on in the game, as well as the stands and around the EPL, is quite a lot of fun to listen to.
And their criticisms of the refereees and the 'flopping' for fouls is almost always right on target.

The only downside to the show is that, sometimes, they've selected fans whose accents are so thick that they're hard to always understand, and the closed-captioning person back in the States is completely confused as to what's being said.

From The Times April 27, 2007 Portuguese men at war as Ronaldo hits back at Mourinho
by Matt Hughes

Michael Dell of Dell Computers ID'd as new bidder in Dolphins sale acc. to ESPN's Hank Goldberg

Sunday December 16th, 2007
10 a.m.

Within the past hour, on the Miami Dolphins pre-game show on WQAM Radio, Hank Goldberg of ESPN (and soon-to-be departed from WQAM at the end of the month) said his sources have identified computer entrepreneur and mogul Michael Dell of Round Rock, TX-based Dell Computers as the newest bidder for the Miami Dolphins team and stadium facilities.

See: ,
In September, FORBES magazine listed him as the 8th richest American, with an estimated net worth of $17.2 billion.

As you all know, starting this fall, the stadium's newest tenant will be the University of Miami football team, who played for 70 years at the City of Miami's Orange Bowl, which is slated to be demolished in the spring.
A place I practically grew-up at for Dolphin and Hurricane games from 1970-78.

Hank further stated that Related Group CEO Jorge Perez, the real estate mogul whose company owns many of the most valuable properties in South Florida -including many whom I regularly blast on my blog- who'd been identified in initial press reports early Friday evening as a possible bidder for the team, is NOT one of the two bidders who are currently in play.
The other bidder still in the action is Stephen Ross, one of Perez's business partners at The Related Group.

In case you forgot or didn't know about it, Dell Computers bought Miami-based Alienware last year, , to help it target consumers and businesses seeking the highest-performance computing products, so I expect at least a few enterprising reporters here to try to talk to Alienware's execs and get some first impressions of Michael Dell.
Well, they should, whether they will or not is the question.

For more info on Alienware, see Dell contracts to buy Alienware, March 23, 2006

Personally, I'd love to see Michael Dell buy the Miami Dolphins.
excerpt from The Miami Herald
Dolphins losing, but fans are still watching
By Barry Jackson

December 7, 2007

WQAM (560) is focusing on out-of-market candidates in its search for a successor for Hank Goldberg, who leaves at the end of December instead of taking a 60 percent pay cut.
Former UM lineman Dan Sileo removed his name from consideration because he said he's getting a lucrative new contract from his Tampa station. WQAM, incidentally, is closing in on a five-year deal to retain UM rights.
The Miami Herald
Hank Goldberg leaving WQAM
By Barry Jackson
October 20, 2007

Sports-talk host Hank Goldberg, a South Florida radio presence since the early 1970s, will leave WQAM when his contract expires at the end of December, his agent said Friday.
An official close to the discussions said Goldberg, 67, refused to take a pay cut in the 50 to 60 percent range.
''I can make more elsewhere,'' Goldberg said. ''I don't have that many more years to work.'' Beyond money, Goldberg said, ''I've kind of had enough of this. I've got a lot of ESPN work. I have an idea of something national I want to do.'' Goldberg declined to say what that would be.
Goldberg said he doubts he would work at another South Florida station: ''There's nothing I know of I would be interested in.'' Joel Feinberg, owner of 790 The Ticket, said he won't pursue Goldberg.
WQAM general manager Joe Bell said he and Goldberg are ''at an impasse regarding finances'' but Goldberg can stay if he changes his mind.
Goldberg has been a talk show host on WQAM since November 1992. Two months before that, he was fired from his jobs as a talk-show host and Dolphins color analyst on WIOD because he refused to cancel a guest on his show (novelist/screenwriter Elmore Leonard) when WIOD's program director insisted he talk only about Hurricane Andrew, three weeks after the storm.
Goldberg, who predicts NFL games and does horse racing analysis for ESPN, previously was a sportscaster at NBC 6 when it was WTVJ-Channel 4.
Bell said he will look nationally and locally for a new host to replace Goldberg, who works 4 to 5 p.m. with Jim Mandich and alone from 5 to 7 p.m. Local candidates include WQAM's Kim Bokamper and Orlando Alzugaray and Palm Beach-based sportscaster Evan Cohen, who hosts UM post-game shows for WQAM.
Meanwhile, Bell said he has told Neil Rogers' agent that he will offer the longtime midday host a new contract beyond his current deal that runs through 2008.
To understand what the alleged incident behind the contretemps below was about, see reader comments at:
The Miami Herald
Hank Goldberg back on WQAM
By Barry Jackson
March 10, 2004

Hank Goldberg returned to his WQAM talk show Tuesday after a weeklong absence following an off-air incident involving the station's general sales manager, Luanne Winick.
In an amusing skit, Dolphins coach Dave Wannstedt opened Goldberg's show and said, ''We're going to talk about everything except the Dolphins,'' then said he was taking a call -- from Goldberg, who proceeded to interview Wannstedt.
Goldberg said on the air that he was ''glad'' to be back. ''It was lonely without you all,'' he said to his listeners. "I just want to put the whole thing behind me. It was something that just got out of hand and shouldn't have.''
WQAM general manager Greg Reed met with Goldberg on Tuesday morning and said, "Everything was resolved.''
The Miami Herald
Meeting could decide WQAM fate of Goldberg
Staff and Wire Reports
March 9, 2004

Hank Goldberg's status at WQAM could be determined during a meeting today with general manager Greg Reed. Goldberg has been kept off the air since March 2 following an off-air incident involving Luanne Winick, the station's general sales manager.
If the meeting goes well, Goldberg could be back on the air at 4 p.m. today. But Reed said Monday he has not decided whether to retain Goldberg.
''I don't know what will happen,'' Reed said. "It depends on how the meeting goes.''
Said Goldberg: "I will hear what he has to say. I've talked to Luanne. We're OK. It was a misunderstanding. I'm contrite. I just want to go on.''
On another matter, Reed said he was ''exploring'' the possibility of adding Howard Stern's morning show if Clear Channel's Big-106 does not resume carrying it.
The Miami Herald
WQAM's Goldberg waits for station's decision
By Barry Jackson
March 7, 2004

Hank Goldberg said Saturday he would like to return to his WQAM talk show, but station general manager Greg Reed said he has not decided if or when Goldberg will return to the air.
Goldberg has been off the air since Tuesday after an off-air incident involving the station's general sales manager, Luanne Winick.
''I want to get this over with,'' said Goldberg, who's in the last year of his contract.
"I cursed out a fellow [employee]. I thought I was provoked. I went too far with it. I've apologized for it. It could have been resolved in five minutes if [Reed] had called me in the office, and I would have agreed I was out of line.
"When I was sent home, I was in limbo. He didn't communicate to me directly, so I went to my attorney. I have to protect myself. . . . I haven't been told anything, whether I'm suspended, whether I'm suspended with or without pay. . . . If they want to fine me, OK. Things like this happen all the time in the workplace. I said it won't happen again.''
Reed was noncommittal about Goldberg's future with WQAM.
''I want to take some time and talk to my corporate people,'' Reed said.
"This could have been resolved in a day or two but because of the actions of the attorneys, it has forced us to look at the totality of Hank's contribution to the radio station and his performance.''

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Lawyer may lose license for blog entry on embattled Broward judge

The South Florida Sun-Sentinel's Tonya Alanez has an eye-opening story today that highlights just one of the myriad problems with the American judiciary, and South Florida's in particular, with a story about Broward County blogger Sean Conway of Jaablog, who said
some things worth paying attention to regarding Broward Circuit Judge Cheryl Alemán's
professional demeanor on the bench.
I guess telling the truth can be problematic!

As for Prof. Bruce Rogow, having seen them both in action, he may be one of a handful of people in the country who could give Sen. Charles Schumer a real battle in a race to a microphone stand.

2:30 p.m.
After I initially posted this, I came across Bob Norman's post on his blog, The Daily Pulp, which I commend to you here:

South Florida Sun-Sentinel
Lawyer may lose license for blog entry on Broward judge
By Tonya Alanez
South Florida Sun-Sentinel
December 13, 2007

A defense attorney's law license is at risk because he posted an angry description on the Internet of embattled Broward Circuit Judge Cheryl Alemán, calling her an "evil, unfair witch."
Last week, as Alemán was on trial for alleged misconduct before the Judicial Qualifications Commission, The Florida Bar signed off on its finding that Sean Conway may have violated five bar rules, including impugning the judge's qualifications or integrity.
In the Halloween 2006 posting on a blog, Conway denounced Alemán for what he said was an "ugly, condescending attitude" and questioned her mental stability after, he says, she unlawfully forced attorneys to choose between unreasonable trial dates or waiving their clients' rights to a speedy trial.
Conway, a former Broward assistant public defender now in private practice, said Wednesday he feels justified in his comments.
"She was giving people one week to prepare for trial and as soon as the blog exposed it through powerful words she stopped it," he said. "And that's why I stand by what I did. Sometimes the language the bar approves of doesn't get the job done."
Conway, 36, also filed a complaint against Alemán with the Judicial Qualifications Commission, the state agency that polices judicial conduct, citing her "deliberate refusal" to follow the law and insolent behavior. Conway says he hasn't heard from the commission since a May 29 letter acknowledging his complaint.
Alemán was unavailable for comment Wednesday.
In the meantime, the judge awaits the outcome of her three-day trial for allegedly threatening to hold defense attorneys in contempt and refusing to remove herself from cases in which she had an acrimonious relationship with the defense attorney.
If she's found guilty, she could face anything from a public reprimand to removal from the bench. Likewise, if Conway is found guilty of violating bar rules, he could face discipline ranging from a reprimand to disbarment.
"She is clearly unfit for her position and knows not what it means to be a neutral arbiter," Conway wrote in his commentary.
That posting on Jaablog, a courthouse weblog created a year ago to examine Broward County judges' performances and legal issues, is protected speech, says Conway's attorney, Fred Haddad.
"There's absolutely no reason that politicians, and that's all judges are here in Broward County, aren't open to criticism," Haddad said. "We've got a [Florida Bar] grievance committee that can't even conceptualize the First Amendment. You're dealing with a group of people that are entrenched in protecting each other."
In a Nov. 21 letter to the bar, Haddad cited a federal case, which found that Michigan bar rules restricting attorneys' criticism of judges to be overly broad and vague and unconstitutional.
In that opinion, U.S. District Judge Arthur J. Tarnow, of the Eastern District of Michigan, wrote: "Limiting an attorney's extrajudicial criticism of a branch of government in the name of preserving the judiciary's integrity is likely to have an unintended, deleterious effect upon the public's perception, since attorneys are often the best suited to assess the performance of judges."
That case is on appeal.
Bruce Rogow, a constitutional lawyer and professor at Nova Southeastern University, agrees that bar rules are overly broad and vague but thinks Conway may have overstepped boundaries.
"I don't think there's any excuse for that kind of crude and cruel language," he said. "The trouble with blogs is that people get carried away and sometimes go over the top. There's just some good judgment that needs to be used in criticizing a judge."
The Florida Bar will now write a formal complaint and submit it to the Florida Supreme Court, which will assign a judge to referee Conway's case.

Tonya Alanez can be reached at or 954-356-4542.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

One year since last Dolphins win; Huizenga as Wile E Coyote

But what do you get for a woe-begone team that needs everything?
Well, to quote myself, Darren McFadden, the franchise/playmaker running back from Arkansas is a great start!

Before I wrote that post last month, and even before UVA came down to the Orange Bowl and laid a 48-0 whipping on the U-M Hurricanes at their last game ever at the Orange Bowl -easily one of the lowest moments in South Florida sports history- I was of the opinion that if the Dolphins won a couple of games before the season ended, they'd consider themselves lucky if they could grab UVA's talented and savvy DE Chris Long, a kid who never takes a down off and has a remarkable sense of anticipation. He seldom gets fooled twice.

The Baltimore Sun's NFL blog Moving the Chains by Sheil Kapadia, has an interview with Armando Salguero of The Miami Herald on his experience covering the winless team. Armando answers the McFadden question this way:

Q:I'm sure you started receiving questions about the draft around Week 5. The Dolphins look like a sure bet to land the first pick. What direction do you see them going in?

A: I have no idea whom the Dolphins will draft because the process has really not begun. There is thinking out there that Darren McFadden of Arkansas would be a likely pick, but there is also the argument that picking a running back No. 1 is wasting the pick. No one -- not even the Dolphins -- know which player they will pick. I do know they would love to trade down and garner extra picks in exchange for a minimal move to later in the top 10.

Right, the ol' "trade down" route!


Other than perhaps the 49ers about 15 years or so under Bill Walsh, who routinely outsmarted other NFL teams with their trades and draft selections the way the Patriots do now, just whom has this trading-down tactic actually worked for, under the current free agent system?

Perhaps that explains why this particular tactic is so very popular with 12-year olds with blogs of their own, who love to opine and write "trade down" on newspaper or NFL team forum sites, with little photo icons of SciFi characters next to their names. They lack a larger frame of reference to understand their own 'borrowed' thoughts lack a solid foundation in reality.

I like Armando Salguero, and even have his blog on the SouthBeachHoosier Media Links, but even at this late date, he has yet to construct a logical scenario where, well, a mystery team, can actually offer the Dolphins more riches for their #1 in an NFL draft that every other sports writer keeps writing is average at best. Like they know? Like anyone knows?

As far as the Dolphins actually drafting Darren McFadden, having gotten to the point where a wrong move in the NFL draft in April could leave them highly vulnerable to possibly losing two interdivision games a year, due solely to one player of absurd ability making one Hall-of-Fame move, I guess I'm just old-fashioned. I like proven talent in a playmaker.

In Arkansas they say: McFadden will surpass Tebow in NFL

Not to state the obvious, but the more talent on your team the better. That's evidenced by this year's woeful Dolphin team which is so clearly bereft of talent, football intelligence and savvy. Not to mention, moxie on special teams, though the special team coach can hardly be blamed when so many components of his team have left the team thru no fault of his, and he's forced to play with guys who so clearly wear their trepidation on their faces.

It's almost like the inexperience of this year's Hurricanes team, where guys run out of bounds while trying to catch kickoffs, rather than simply let the ball sail out and draw a penalty flag, is rubbing off on them by sheer geographic proximity.

You can't let McFadden slip away in April or you'll be chasing your mistake for the next 10-12 years, and have national and local sports writers and talk radio mention it every time you play that team. Every time. Could it be any more predictable?

If the Dolphins have a brain freeze and foolishly trade down, and the lowly Jets pass on Boston selecting the Boston College QB Matt Ryan, either they or the savvy Patriots will swoop down upon McFadden toute-de-suite!

Then, be prepared to watch not another hammer fall on stumbling-and-bumbling Dolphin owner H. Wayne Huizenga, but rather the proverbial giant ACME anvil or piano fall on him, as constantly happened to beloved Warner Brothers cartoon icon Wile E. Coyote in his pursuit of The Road Runner.

For our purposes here, the role of The Road Runner is played by the two-headed Patriot's brain trust of Scott Pioli and Bill Billichick.

Ségolène Royal's Christmas present to the people of France: lots of insider dirt!

You might recall that I told you all a couple of months ago, during the French presidential election campaign, that Joshua Boswell's then-extant blog was great for getting a real sense of what was going on in La France.
The issues, the personalities, the hidden agendas of the people behind the curtain, what levers the unions were pulling on a particular day, plus the group that never matters in the U.S.: the self-proclaimed intellectuals. (And you know who you are!)

More often than not, I used Josh's blog to follow-up on the nightly campaign reports I watched on France 2's excellent news program 20 Heures, , which I watched every night at 11:30 p.m. instead of ABC News Nightline, which I watch only intermittently these days.
For someone with a news junkie DNA like me, I'm fortunate to live in a part of South Florida where telecasts on a local Miami-based low-power TV station, Channel 53, which airs TV news and cultural programming from all around the world, 24/7, via satellite directly from the originating stations/networks.
It's not a "must-carry" for Comcast, but is available to anyone who knows about it, and has either a rabbit ears antenna or a cable line to act like an antenna.
Video is usually okay but not great.

Usually I'd either watch 20 Heures from France 2 -or tape it and watch it later- when it comes on every night at 11:30 p.m., or the 10:30 a.m. encore the following morning.

On Saturday mornings, before I did any errands, I'd zip thru the tapes looking for anything good I might've missed, before throwing out the Post-Its and then put the tapes in my re-use pile.

They usually have an English language translation crawl below the screen that's usually pretty accurate, though during the run-up to the 2nd round, there were the occasional lapses.
I'd usually catch the mistakes when I was being careful in writing down facts that I either didn't know or hadn't read anywhere, or, in transcribing parts of speeches by Sarkozy, Royal, Fillon, et al to their devout
supporters, esp. Sarkozy's zingers aimed at Royal and her supporters.

(Speaking of keeping your word, there this, just in from the Financial Times:
Sarkozy’s 100 steps to slimmer government )

Reading Josh, I was much better able to connect some of the subtle policy points that were sometimes lost on me, especially given the generally poor U.S. TV coverage of the election.
That tended to have the same p.o.v. or undercurrent to it regardless of the date or subject, a point often hammered home then by Matt Drudge on his syndicated Sunday night radio show: Ségolène Royal as a Hillary precursor.

(In the future, since I wrote down so much, I'll post a lot of the notes I took on Sarkozy's public policy pronouncements during the campaign, which I always found clear and persuasive.)

Josh's follow-up blog, continues his excellent work.
I think this particular recent post about Royal's new book proves it!

A week after the fact, you'd think this Royal story would have Elaine Sciolino's New York Times byline all over it, mais non.

Besides bookmarking Josh's site, you might also want to consider adding the Times' own homepage for all things France:

Without further ado, the aforementioned bit of delicious political dirt with context and commentary by Joshua Boswell
Tuesday, December 4, 2007 Royal's Christmas Present

HB resident earned it the old-fashioned way: Brad Adamonis qualifies for PGA Tour

Noticed this news last week in The Miami Herald and meant to post it sooner.
Since he's from Rhode Island, if I ever run into him, I'll have to ask him if he knows my old Arlington housemate Jennifer Dugan, since as I was always told by Jen's friends whenever they came down from R.I. to Washington for a weekend visit, "Everyone who's anyone in Rhode Island knows" the adorable and personable Jen.

And that was before she was flying out of Logan Airport for U.S. Airways.

Nice backgrounder on Brad's years of hard work in The Boston Globe from October is below the
Herald excerpt of last week.

SPOTLIGHT ON GOLF: Honda Classic diversifies
Miami Herald

By Jeff Shain
December 5, 2007

Brad Adamonis (Hallandale Beach) is headed to the PGA Tour, capping a breakthrough year by earning one of 26 cards handed out Monday from qualifying finals in Orlando.

Adamonis was one of just four players to break 70 in each of the final three rounds of the six-day marathon at Orange County National. He tied for ninth at 18-under-par 414.A six-year Nationwide Tour veteran, Adamonis broke into the win column last October by surviving an eight-hole playoff in West Texas. He wound up 33rd on the money list.
Brad's profile page:

Boston Globe
The long-awaited payoff
Adamonis on cusp after playoff win
By Jim McCabe, Globe Staff
October 18, 2007

It went into the record books as a victory that needed eight playoff holes, but Brad Adamonis knows better. It required years of perseverance.
Now in his fifth year on the Nationwide Tour, the Rhode Island native is 34, married, and the father of two, so how his life has changed since he graduated from Miami of Ohio and began his quest as a professional golfer. There always have been flashes of good play to keep him motivated, but what transpired last Sunday validates the time he has put into his game.
"I've been chasing the dream," said Adamonis. "So it feels good to finally win."
He insists that he surprised himself by being so calm in an eight-hole playoff to win the WNB Golf Classic in Midland, Texas, that he was actually more nervous in the closing holes of a final-round 70 that left him at 10-under-par 278. There had been birdies at the 14th, 15th, and 17th holes, but a bogey at the 72d hole, thanks to a poor drive, had cost him.
Or so he thought.
"Guys closing behind me were in good position, so I figured I'd just have a good finish," said Adamonis. "I felt fortunate to get into a playoff."
Vance Veazey and Ron Whittaker were eliminated on the first two holes, so onward went Adamonis and Tjaart van der Walt. They matched pars on the next five holes, but on the eighth extra hole, van der Walt made bogey, so Adamonis's par earned him $85,500 - though it could be a far greater payoff if things continue on an upward turn the next three weeks.
"I know I need at least one more good tournament the rest of the way," said Adamonis.
He was referring to the fact that he has vaulted to 30th on the money list and the top 25 will earn PGA Tour cards for 2008. With $161,735, Adamonis knows he's just $11,379 behind No. 25. He's in Tennessee for this week's stop, with tournaments in Miami and the Nationwide Tour Championship in Lakeside, Calif., to follow.
There's much to look forward to, yes, but so, too, has he tried to savor a victory that has been a long time coming.
"I've been playing fairly well, but it's always felt like I'm one or two shots away from being really good," said Adamonis, who inherited his passion for the game from his father, Dave, the founder of the US Challenge Cup Tour for junior golfers.

Woe is Wie
What has to rate as the season's saddest story took another disheartening turn when Greg Nared became the second manager within a year to walk away from Michelle Wie. "After careful consideration for my future, I have resigned, effective immediately," said Nared, who worked for the William Morris Agency. Wie just turned 18 and has been a pro for barely two years and already she's gone through two managers, both of whom - Nared and Ross Berlin - had her best interests at heart. Game plans envisioned by first Berlin and then Nared never emphasized high-profile tournaments against the men, nor was it ever considered best for the teenager to get her wrapped up in aggressive endorsement deals. Both managers had paid close attention to the almost flawless way in which Tiger Woods had been brought along slowly, and they felt a similar blueprint was in order for Wie. Somewhere, somehow, it has all gone terribly wrong, and since her parents are so in control of their daughter's life - from picking agents to hiring and firing caddies, which they've done at such a pace that father B.J. Wie was back lugging the bag at last week's Samsung Championship - they are the ones who must share the blame. In 2006, Wie was very much in contention to win three majors. In 2007, she played in eight LPGA Tour events and had a stroke average of 76.7. Yet, the numbers don't explain the half of it. The year has been a public relations nightmare, from the disrespectful way in which she treated LPGA Tour members and organizers at the Ginn Tribute, to the shame of accepting a sponsor's exemption into the Samsung when the dignified thing to do would have been to say, "Thanks, but I'm not worthy of this right now." Wie is enrolled at Stanford, which is a nice place for any 18-year-old to be. It's the perfect opportunity for her to take care of herself and tend to decisions for herself. But with her parents having left Hawaii to rent a house near Stanford, you wonder if that's possible.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Miami area Public Policy Bloggers Should Meet Here!

Happened to come across this great-looking video -about 17 minutes long- while looking at the TF1 website yesterday after the Dolphins-Bills ballgame, which I'll have more to say about in a separate post.

Personally, I've never been that enamored of the whole cruise ship thing, myself, perhaps from growing-up down here and being innundated with TV commercials.
That said, this video from this popular French TV program does make it look awfully tempting!

Just thinking out loud, it's hard to imagine a better possible location for South Florida's public policy bloggers to have a weekend convention, a meeting of the minds if you will, something that happens in other cities, but which I've never heard of here in South Florida.
Now all we'd have to do is find a foundation to drop some serious coin and...

Besides some great shots of folks obviously enjoying La Dolce Vita aboard Royal Caribbean's Freedom of the Seas, it features some great shots of downtown Miami.

See and,,3647219,00-tf1-video-sept-huit-croisiere-xxl-.html

For now, due to time constraints, I'll pass on this chance to go on a tangent and needle the Miami Herald's constant softball treatment of the South Florida cruise ship industry, and their practically ignoring relevant developments the last few years in suspicious cases involving customers who go "missing" aboard ship.

I'll just mention that when the famed forensic investigator Dr. Henry Lee is in town on behalf of a family, and the case is being given hours of time on Court TV and yet the paper in the town where the company is based ignores that, you can draw your own conclusions, and they aren't at all favorable to the Herald.

Consider for instance how long it took for them to concede that Carnival Cruise Line was putting up FAR TOO LITTLE money to get exclusive naming rights for the much-maligned Center for Performing Arts in downtown Miami, which, typically, Michael Putney of WLPG, Channel 10, was saying from the very beginning

( , , and ) along with a handful of other area bloggers.

See these blog posts below, among others, rightly complaining about aspects of the Carnival Center , , )

In the Heart of a Great Country, Beats the Soul of Hoosier Nation

In the Heart of a Great Country, Beats the Soul of Hoosier Nation
"In the Heart of a Great Country, Beats the Soul of Hoosier Nation." -South Beach Hoosier, 2007

#IUBB, #bannersix

#IUBB, #bannersix
Assembly Hall, Indiana University, Bloomington, Indiana; Click photo to see video of Straight No Chaser's version of Back Home Again In Indiana, 2:37
The South Florida I Grew Up In

Excerpts from Joan Didion's Miami, 1987, Simon & Schuster:

In the continuing opera still called, even by Cubans who have now lived the largest part of their lives in this country, el exilo, the exile, meetings at private homes in Miami Beach are seen to have consequences. The actions of individuals are seen to affect events directly. Revolutions and counter-revolutions are framed in the private sector, and the state security apparatus exists exclusively to be enlisted by one or another private player. That this particular political style, indigenous to the Caribbean and to Central America, has now been naturalized in the United States is one reason why, on the flat coastal swamps of South Florida, where the palmettos once blew over the detritus of a dozen failed booms and the hotels were boarded up six months a year, there has evolved since the early New Year's morning in 1959 when Fulgencio Batista flew for the last time out of Havana a settlement of considerable interest, not exactly an American city as American cities have until recently been understood but a tropical capital: long on rumor, short on memory, overbuilt on the chimera of runaway money and referring not to New York or Boston or Los Angeles or Atlanta but to Caracas and Mexico, to Havana and to Bogota and to Paris and Madrid. Of American cities Miami has since 1959 connected only to Washington, which is the peculiarity of both places, and increasingly the warp...

"The general wildness, the eternal labyrinths of waters and marshes, interlocked and apparently neverending; the whole surrounded by interminable swamps... Here I am then in the Floridas, thought I," John James Audobon wrote to the editor of The Monthly American Journal of Geology and Natural Science during the course of an 1831 foray in the territory then still called the Floridas. The place came first, and to touch down there is to begin to understand why at least six administations now have found South Florida so fecund a colony. I never passed through security for a flight to Miami without experiencing a certain weightlessness, the heightened wariness of having left the developed world for a more fluid atmosphere, one in which the native distrust of extreme possibilities that tended to ground the temperate United States in an obeisance to democratic institutions seemed rooted, if at all, only shallowly.

At the gate for such flights the preferred language was already Spanish. Delays were explained by weather in Panama. The very names of the scheduled destinations suggested a world in which many evangelical inclinations had historically been accomodated, many yearnings toward empire indulged...

In this mood Miami seemed not a city at all but a tale, a romance of the tropics, a kind of waking dream in which any possibility could and would be accomodated...
Hallandale Beach Blog

Hallandale Beach Blog is where I try to inject or otherwise superimpose a degree of accountability, transparency and much-needed insight onto local Broward County government and public policy issues, which I feel is sorely lacking in local media now, despite all the technological advances that have taken place since I grew-up in South Florida in the 1970's. On this blog, I concentrate my energy, enthusiasm, anger, disdain and laser-like attention primarily on the coastal cities of Aventura, Hollywood and Hallandale Beach.

IF you lived in this part of South Florida, you'd ALREADY be in stultifying traffic, be paying higher-than-necessary taxes, and be continually musing about the chronic lack of any real accountability or transparency among not only elected govt. officials, but also of City, County and State employees as well. Collectively, with a few rare exceptions, they couldn't be farther from the sort of strong results-oriented, work-ethic mentality that citizens here deserve and are paying for.

This is particularly true in the town I live in, the City of Hallandale Beach, just north of Aventura and south of Hollywood. There, the Perfect Storm of years of apathy, incompetency and cronyism are all too readily apparent.
Sadly for its residents, Hallandale Beach is where even the easily-solved or entirely predictable quality-of-life problems are left to fester for YEARS on end, because of myopia, lack of common sense and the unsatisfactory management and coordination of resources and personnel.

It's a city with tremendous potential because of its terrific location and weather, yet its citizens have become numb to its outrages and screw-ups after years of the worst kind of chronic mismanagement and lack of foresight. On a daily basis, they wake up and see the same old problems again that have never being adequately resolved by the city in a logical and responsible fashion. Instead the city government either closes their eyes and hopes you'll forget the problem, or kicks them -once again- further down the road.

I used to ask myself, and not at all rhetorically, "Where are all the enterprising young reporters who want to show through their own hard work and enterprise, what REAL investigative reporting can produce?"

Hearing no response, I decided to start a blog that could do some of these things, taking the p.o.v. of a reasonable-but-skeptical person seeing the situation for the first time.
Someone who wanted questions answered in a honest and forthright fashion that citizens have the right to expect.

Hallandale Beach Blog intends to be a catalyst for positive change.

Hallandale Beach's iconic beachball-colored Water Tower, between beach and A1A/South Ocean Drive

Hallandale Beach's iconic beachball-colored Water Tower, between beach and A1A/South Ocean Drive
Hallandale Beach, FL; February 16, 2008 photo by South Beach Hoosier

Hollywood in Cartoons, The New Yorker

Hollywood in Cartoons, The New Yorker
"Gentlemen, I am happy to announce that as of today we are closing down our Washington news bureau and moving the entire operation to L.A."

Hollywood in Cartoons, The New Yorker

Hollywood in Cartoons, The New Yorker
"O.K., so I dig a hole and put the bone in the hole. But what's my motivation for burying it?"

Hollywood in cartoons, 10-21-06 Non-Sequitur by Wiley, www-NON-SEQUITUR.COM

Hollywood in cartoons, 10-21-06 Non-Sequitur by Wiley, www-NON-SEQUITUR.COM
The Magic of Hollywood: A motion has been put forth that we should seek to create rather than imitate. All in favor of killing this silly notion, nod in mindless agreement...

Miami Dolphins

Miami Dolphins
South Beach Hoosier's first Dolphin game at the Orange Bowl came in Dec. 1970, aged 9, a 45-3 win over Buffalo that propelled them into their first ever playoff appearance.

Sebastian the Ibis, the Spirited Mascot of the University of Miami Hurricanes

Sebastian the Ibis, the Spirited Mascot of the University of Miami Hurricanes
Before going to my first U-M game at the Orange Bowl in 1972, a friend's father often would bring me home an extra 'Canes game program. That's how I came to have the Alabama at U-M game program from Nov. 16, 1968, which was the first nationally-televised college football night game in color. (A 14-6 loss to the Crimson Tide.) After that first ballgame against Tulane, as l often did for Dolphin games if my father wasn't going, I'd get dropped off at the Levitz parking lot near the 836 & I-95 Cloverleaf in NMB, and catch a Dade County Park & Ride bus, going straight to the Orange Bowl. Onboard, I'd get next to the window and listen to WIOD's pre-game show on my Radio Shack transistor radio. A few times, I was just about the only person onboard besides the bus driver, which was alright by me. Once at the Orange Bowl, if I didn't already have a ticket, I'd buy a game program for myself and one or two for friends or teachers before heading to the ticket window, since you usually couldn't find a program vendor once inside. I probaly had a friend or my father with me for just under 40% of the U-M games I ever went to, but you have to remember that the team, though blessed with several talented players, like Chuck Foreman and Burgess Owens, was just so-so to average at best, and the games were usually played on Friday nights, so it wasn't exactly high on everyone's list of things to do. Depending upon the opponent, if I was alone, I'd often have entire areas of the Orange Bowl to myself. (Wish I had photos of that now!) For instance, I had a good portion of the East (open) End Zone to myself against Oklahoma in the mid-70's, when the Boomer Schooner and the Schooner Crew went out on the field after an Oklahoma TD, and the Schooner received an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty from the refs, as would happen years later in an Orangle Bowl Classic game. (Against FSU?) I was there for the wins and losses under Pete Elliott, Carl Selmer & Lou Saban, and the huge on-field fight in '73 when under eventual national champion Notre Dame (under Ara Parseghian), they called a time-out with less than a minute to go, and already up 37-0. Their rationale? To score another TD and impress the AP football writers; final score 44-0. Well, they got their wish and beat Alabama 24-23 for the title at the Sugar Bowl. A year later, thanks to my Mom's boss, she and I saw Ara's last game as head coach of the Irish in the Orange Bowl Game from the East End Zone -in front of the Alabama cheerleaders!!!- in an exciting 13-11 Notre Dame win over Alabama and Bear Bryant, a rematch of the '73 national title game. I was also present for the U-M's huge 20-15 win under Pete Elliott against Darrel Royal's Texas Longhorns, the week Sports Illustrated's College Football preview issue came out with Texas on the cover, below. I was also present for lots of wins against schools called College of the Pacific, UNLV and Cal-Poly San Luis Obsispo, which I'd then never heard of before.

Miami Dolphins Cheerleaders, April 28, 2007

Miami Dolphins Cheerleaders, April 28, 2007
Photo by Mario J. Bermudez. April 28, 2007 at Dolphins NFL Draft Party at Dolphin HQ, Davie, FL

Of cheerleaders past and present

Given South Florida's unique version of the melting pot -con salsa- demographics and mindset, these women in the photo above are surely what most South Floridians would consider attractive women. But for this observer, who's spent hours & hours at IU cheerleader tryouts and who has known dozens of cheerleaders -and wannabes- in North Miami Beach, Bloomington, Evanston and Washington, D.C., the whole time I was watching these members of the Dolphins' squad perform, I couldn't help but compare them and their routines to those of some IU friends of mine who ALWAYS showed true Hoosier spirit & enthusiasm. Sitting at my table right near the stage and still later, while watching the long lines of Dolphin fans of all ages waiting to snap photos of themselves with the cheerleaders, I couldn't help but think about those friends who always left me and other Hoosier fans feeling positive & optimistic. Was there anyone I saw in Davie who possessed these valuable intangibles: the dancing precision of IU Red Stepper -and Captain- Gail Amster, my talented and spirited Phi Beta Kappa pal from Deerfield (IL), who always sat next to me in our Telecom. classes as we took turns entertaining the other; the ebullient spirit & energy of two Hoosier cheerleaders -and captains- from Bloomington, Wendy (Mulholland) Moyle & Sara Cox; the hypnotic, Midwestern, girl-next-door sexiness of Hoosier cheerleader Julie Bymaster, from Brownsburg; or, the adorable Southern girl-next-door appeal of former Hoosier Pom squader Jennifer Grimes, of Louisville, always such a clear distraction while sitting underneath the basket? Nope, not that I could see. But then they were VERY tough acts to follow!!! And that's not to mention my talented & spirited friends like Denise Andrews of Portage, Jody Kosanovich of Hammond & Linda Ahlbrand of Chesterton, all of whom were dynamic cheerleaders -and captains- at very large Hoosier high schools that were always in the championship mix, with Denise's team winning the Ind. football championship her senior year when she was captain -just like in a movie. That Denise, Jody & Linda all lived on the same dorm floor, just three stories above me at Briscoe Quad our freshman year, was one of the greatest coincidences -and strokes of luck for me!- that I could've ever hoped for. You could hardly ask for better ambassadors of IU than THESE very smart, sweet and talented women. In a future SBH post, I'll tell the story of one of the greatest Hoosiers I ever met, the aforementioned Wendy Mulholland, the Bloomington-born captain and emotional heart of the great early '80's IU cheerleading squads, and the daughter of Jack Mulholland, IU's former longtime Treasurer. The acorn doesn't fall far from a tree built on a foundation of integrity & community service! (After he retired, Mr. Mulholland was the first executive director of the Community Foundation of Bloomington and Monroe County. I used to joke with Wendy that her dad's name was the one that was permanently affixed to the bottom of my work-study checks for years, while I worked at the Dept. of Political Science's Library, first, at the Student Building in the old part of campus, and then later, after it was refurbished, in magnificent Woodburn Hall, my favorite building on campus.) In that future post, I'll share some reflections on Wendy's great strength of character and personality; my intentions of returning to Bloomington a few weeks before Fall '82 classes started, so I could help Wendy train and work-out to rehab her knee, so she'd feel confident in trying-out for the squad again, following a bad knee injury that'd left her physically-unable to try-out for the squad the previous spring, a big disappointment to those of us who cared about both Wendy and the team; my incredulity at, quite literally, running into Wendy while walking down a sidewalk one afternoon a few years later in Evanston, IL, when we were astonished to discover we were both living there, with me trying to hook on with a Windy City advertising agency, and Wendy then-attending Kellogg (KGSM) at Northwestern, right when the WSJ had named Kellogg the #1 Business School in the country. I'll also share a story about Wendy performing a true act of kindness towards me in 1982, when I was having a real emergency, and she went above-and-beyond what I had any logical reason to expect. Yet, Wendy, along with her very helpful dad, Jack, came through for me when I was in a very bad time crunch. I've never forgotten Wendy's kindness towards me, and her true Hoosier spirit. There's NOTHING I wouldn't do for Wendy Mulholland.

It's All About "The U"

It's All About "The U"
South Beach Hoosier's first U-M football game at the Orange Bowl was in 1972, age 11, against Tulane in the infamous "Fifth Down" game. In order to drum up support and attendance for the U-M at the Orange Bowl, that game had a promotion whereby South Florida kids who were school safety patrols could get in for free IF they wore their sash. I did. Clearly they knew that it was better to let kids in for free, knowing their parents would give them money to buy food and souvenirs, perhaps become a fan and want to return for future games. The ballgame made an interesting impression on The New York Times, resulting in this gem from the "View of Sport" column of Oct, 14, 1990, labeled 'Fifth Down or Not, It's Over When It's Over.' -"In 1972, aided by a fifth-down officiating gift in the last moments of the game, Miami of Florida defeated Tulane, 24-21. The country and the world was a much different place that fall because The New York Times took time and space to editorialize on the subject. ''Is it right for sportsmen, particularly young athletes, to be penalized or deprived of the goals for which they earnestly competed because responsible officials make mistakes? The ideal of true sportsmanship would be better served if Miami forfeited last week's game.' South Beach Hoosier hardly needs to tell you that this was YET another New York Times editoral that was completely ignored!

The issue I took with me the night of U-M's 20-15 upset of #1 Texas at the Orange Bowl

The issue I took with me the night of U-M's 20-15 upset of #1 Texas at the Orange Bowl
College Football, Texas No. 1, Hook 'em Horns, Sept. 10, 1973. Living in North Miami Beach in the '70's, my Sports Illustrated usually showed up in my mailbox on the Thursday or Friday before the Monday cover date. And was read cover-to-cover by Sunday morning.

The Perfect Storm

The Perfect Storm
U-M QB Ken Dorsey, Miami Hurricanes Undefeated National Champions 2001, Jan. 2002

Miami's Romp in the Rose

Miami's Romp in the Rose
Miami running back Clinton Portis, Jan. 7, 2002

Why the University of Miami should drop football

Why the University of Miami should drop football
June 12, 1995


Steve McGuire and Miami Overpower No.1 Notre Dame, Dec. 4, 1989

How Sweet It Is!

How Sweet It Is!
Miami Whips Oklahoma For The National Championship, Pictured: Dennis Kelleher, Jan. 11, 1988

My, Oh My, Miami!

My, Oh My, Miami!
Steve Walsh and the Canes Stun FSU, Oct. 12, 1987

Why Is Miami No. 1?

Why Is Miami No. 1?
QB Vinny Testaverde, Nov. 24, 1986

Miracle In Miami

Miracle In Miami
The Hurricanes Storm Past Nebraska, Halfback Keith Griffin, Jan. 9, 1984

Special Issue: College Football

Special Issue: College Football
The Best Passer, George Mira of Miami, Sept. 23, 1963

1984 College & Pro Spectatcular

1984 College & Pro Spectatcular
A Pair Of Aces: U-M QB Bernie Kosar & Miami Dolphin QB Dan Marino, Sept. 5, 1984

Pro Football Hall of Fame Special Issue

Pro Football Hall of Fame Special Issue
Dan Marino, Class of 2005, Aug. 2005


A Portfolio by Walter Iooss Jr., Ricky Williams, Miami Dolphins, Dec. 9, 2002

Coming Back

Coming Back
Jay Fiedler rallies Miami to a last-second win over Oakland, Oct. 1, 2001

Dan's Last Stand

Dan's Last Stand
At 38 and under siege, Dan Marino refuses to go down without a fight, Dec. 13, 1999

The War Zone

The War Zone
In the NFL's toughest division, the surprising Dolphins are on top, Lamar Smith, Dec. 11, 2000

Down and Dirty

Down and Dirty
Jimmy Johnson's Dolphins Bury The Patriots, Steve Emtman, Sept. 9, 1996

The Sunshine Boys

The Sunshine Boys
Now Playing in Miami: The Dan Marino and Jimmy Johnson Show, May 11, 1996


Miami loves Pat Riley but wants to give Don Shula the boot, Dec. 11, 1995


Which of today's stars are locks for the Hall of Fame? Dan Marino for sure. But who else? To find out, we polled the men who do the voting. Sept. 14, 1995

Sportsman Of The Year

Sportsman Of The Year
Don Shula, Dec. 20, 1993

Dan The Man

Dan The Man
Dan Marino Saves The Day For The Dolphins, Jan. 14, 1991

Dangerous Dan

Dangerous Dan
Dan Marino Passes Miami Into The Super Bowl, Jan. 14, 1985

Super Duper!

Super Duper!
Wide Receiver Mark Duper Of The Undefeated Dolphins, Nov. 19, 1984

Air Raid! Miami Bombs Washington

Air Raid! Miami Bombs Washington
Mark Clayton (burning Darryl Green) Sept. 10, 1984

Rookies On The Rise

Rookies On The Rise
Dan Marino: Miami's Hot Quarterback, Nov. 14, 1983

New Life In The WFL

New Life In The WFL
Warfield, Csonka and Kiick of Memphis, July 28, 1975

Zonk! Miami Massacres Minnesota

Zonk! Miami Massacres Minnesota
Larry Csonka, Jan. 21, 1974

Pro Football, Miami Is Rough And Ready

Pro Football, Miami Is Rough And Ready
Larry Csonka & Bob Griese, Sept. 17, 1973

Miami All The Way

Miami All The Way
Bob Griese, Jan. 22, 1973

It's Miami and Washington

It's Miami and Washington
Mercury Morris Speeds Past The Steelers, Jan. 8, 1973

Kiick and Csonka, Miami's Dynamic Duo

Kiick and Csonka, Miami's Dynamic Duo
Larry Csonka & Jim Kiick, Aug. 7, 1972

Sudden Death at Kansas City

Sudden Death at Kansas City
Miami's Garo Yepremian Ends the Longest Game; (kneeling) placekick holder Karl Noonan, Jan. 3, 1972

New Pro in a New Town

New Pro in a New Town
Miami's Frank Emanuel, Aug. 8, 1966

Old-style "Obie" the Orange Bowl Committee mascot

Old-style "Obie" the Orange Bowl Committee mascot
The iconic image I grew-up with in Miami, before FedEx got into the picture