MLB Umpire Loses the Count, Proving that Baseball is Still Boring

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Gary CederstromI’m no fan of baseball. I know that disliking “America’s Favorite Pastime” somehow makes me less of an American, but I don’t really care. Baseball is boring to watch and play and, frankly, I have better things to do with my time.

Despite my dislike of the sport, I have been to several Major League Baseball games in my life and I have even played for a couple of years. However, despite the experiences I have had with the sport, I have never witnessed something as absurd as what happened in the Toronto-Chicago game this past Tuesday.

During the game, home plate umpire Gary Cederstrom lost track of the count. That’s right, the professional umpire couldn’t remember if there were two balls, one strike; one ball, one strike; three balls, one strike; three balls, two strikes; two balls, two strikes; one ball, two strikes; just one ball; just one strike; just two strikes; just two balls or just three balls (did I forget anything?).

So what happened when the then-at-bat Chicago White Sox Adam Dunn disagreed with Cederstrom’s count? Cederstrom waltzed over to the home dugout, picked up the phone and got some clarification. That’s right, the ump went into the dugout and phoned a friend.

I don’t know what’s worse, a 50-year old coach walking out and kicking dirt on an umpire or the umpire failing at the main part of his job. I mean, come on, how hard is it to keep track of, at most, five to seven pitches? And don’t most umpires have little counter thing in their pockets? Or is that counting how many bottles of beer on the wall they are at in their head?

I will give Cederstrom credit though. He did own up to his lapse and actually sought help to keep the game going with the proper count instead of just guessing. But still, for a person whose entire job is counting pitches it is a little absurd that he forgot the count. If this is any indication of future games, it appears as if the MLB’s umpires are warming up for a great postseason of embarrassing mistakes.

Source: Yahoo! Sports – Video: Umpire uses phone after losing track of count

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$60,000, 18-Carat Gold Phone Created for the Rich and Wasteful

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Aesir AE Y Gold PhoneSmartphones are all the rage in the technical world these days. Everybody and their mother has one, though not all of them are cheap. However, most people justify the cost of a smartphone due to all of the neat and fantastic features that come with buying one.

However, one new ridiculous phone from Aesir, a Danish luxury retailer, transcends all boundaries when it comes to flash, style and absurdity. I am talking, of course, about the new limited edition AE+Y, an 18-carat solid gold handset. That’s right, an 18-carat solid gold cell phone.

If the nearly $60,000 price tag isn’t enough to make you want to gouge your eyes out, then what the phone does just might be. Does this phone do apps? Internet? Email? No, no and no. This $60,000 phone does absolutely none of that fancy tech stuff that a cheaper, $50 smartphone does.

What it does do is speed dial, call forwarding and even calculating thanks to a built-in calculator. The device comes with an LCD screen that measures a huge two inches and the battery can last for an impressive five hours long. Compare that to the 11-hour battery life of the Droid Bionic or the iPhone 4’s 14-hour battery life and the numbers speak for themselves.

However, Aesir claims that it is focusing more on form than function and the company is quick to point out that the edge-to-edge key design is a “first” in the realm of mobile handsets. The barebones user interface of the AE+Y was brought to life by renowned designed Tom Hingston while the phone’s unorthodox keypad is laser-engraved.

It has also been noted by Aesir that the keypad features something known as “advanced LED backlighting”. How this differs from your average everyday LED backlighting is beyond me. I think it goes without saying that the target audience for this phone is the obscenely rich and stupid, but don’t these people want a phone that does something other than look pretty and cost a lot of money?

Needless to say, this is one of the most absurd pieces of technology I have ever seen. Why it exists is beyond me but I can only imagine it is because there is actually a person out there dumb enough to blow this kind of money on this kind of device.

Source: Yahoo! – Luxury retailer introduces solid gold phone with a $60,000 price tag

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