Instructor: Linda Williams
W: 3:00pm - 6:00pm, 226 Dwinelle
Enrollment limited to 20
Discerning critics and avid fans have agreed that the five-season run of Ed Burns and David Simon’s The Wire was “the best TV show ever broadcast in America”—not the most popular but the best. The 60 hours that comprise this episodic series have been aptly been compared to Dickens, Balzac, Dreiser and Greek Tragedy. These comparisons attempt to get at the richly textured complexity of the work, its depth, its bleak tapestry of an American city and its diverse social stratifications. Yet none of these comparisons quite nails what it is that made this the most compelling “show” on TV and better than many of the best movies. This class will explore these comparisons, analyze episodes from the first, third, fourth and fifth seasons and try to discover what was and is so great about The Wire. We will screen as much of the series as we can during our mandatory screening sessions and approach it through the following lenses: the other writing of David Simon, including his journalism, an exemplary Greek Tragedy, Dickens’ Bleak House and/or parts of Balzac’s Human Comedy. We will also consider the formal tradition of episodic television.
Please come to the first class having already viewed all of season one on your own. It is available at the MRC.
FanPulse is giving away a $50 NCAA Store gift certificate, even if your bracket is busted. If you had Kansas, Villanova, New Mexico, and Georgetown in your final four, I’m sorry but you probably won’t win your pool. But there is hope…details below:
March Madness resumes today with four Sweet Sixteen games, and four more tomorrow! How are your brackets looking? If they are completely busted, don’t worry. Check-in on FanPulse to pick the winners of each individual game and talk about the game with other fans.
As an added bonus to checking-in, we are giving away a $50 NCAA Store gift certificate to a random fan who is checked-in to The Sweetest Game (the Sweet Sixteen game that has the most total fans checked-in). For example, if the Kentucky vs. Cornell game has the most total check-ins of all eight sweet sixteen games, it will be The Sweetest Game. FanPulse will randomly pick a fan that is checked in to that game to win the $50 NCAA store gift certificate. Here is the schedule for today and tomorrow’s games (PST):
Golden State Warriors Tickets $15 -- Who's interested?
Warriors Rookie Stephen Curry
The Warriors Girls
Now that I’ve attempted to capture both the male and female audiences with catchy photos, I’ll get to the point.
FanPulse (http://fanpul.se) is offering $40 Club 200 tickets to see the Golden State Warriors for only $15, valid for the following home games at Oracle Arena:
Monday, 3/22 – Steve Nash, Amare Stoudemire and the Phoenix Suns Wednesday,3/24 – The streaking Memphis Grizzlies Saturday, 3/27 – Bay-area native Jason Kidd, Dirk Nowitzki and the Dallas Mavericks Friday, 4/2 – All-Star David Lee and The New York Knicks Sunday, 4/11 – Kevin Durant and the Oklahoma City Thunder Tuesday, 4/13 – Deron Williams and the Utah Jazz
To get your tickets: 1) Sign up for a free account at http://fanpul.se the best place for sports fans to check in, track their teams, and discuss every game with friends 2) Call The Warriors official ticketing office at 510-986-2260 and tell them you want the FanPulse $15 ticket deal
There’s no limit right now, so you can invite your friends to sign up and call as well!
If you’re interested in going to any of these games let me know. I should be available to attend any of them except for the 3/27 game against the Mavericks.
Today I started my internship at FanPulse (http://fanpul.se) and took some pictures on my phone while I walked from the train station to the office. I am lucky to have some of the most beautiful views of the bay and AT&T park in the four blocks that I walk.
Grabbed some breakfast and ate on the benches along McCovey Cove. The wall on the left is the right field fence of AT&T park.
Boats in the Marina
Not taken from the office, but you can see the back of the scoreboard from AT&T park from the office windows. This was taken a short walk from the office building back toward the ball park.
Walk just past the building, and you get this view of the Bay Bridge.
Even though I started at 9am, I got off the train around 7:45am, got breakfast, walked a leisurely pace, sat in silence, and just admired the views. I wouldn’t mind getting to the city an hour early every time just to soak it all in again, and again. I’m also loving my first day of doing work since it’s related to sports. I can genuinely say that when I get up do work, I’m excited and enjoy what I’m doing. I’ll be sure to blog about what I do and how it’s going later, but for now I need to catch up on some studying.
"Arguably the most esteemed University in the country, Harvard University, is expanding its academic curriculum to include a class on HBO’s hit television series, The Wire.
Sociology Professor William J. Wilson will teach the course and told the Harvard newspaper, The Crimson, how the television program can help to better understand poverty.
“The Wire has done more to enhance our understanding of the systemic urban inequality that constrains the lives of the poor than any published study.”
The chair of the African American studies chair, Professor Evelyn B. Higginbotham, confirmed that there would indeed be a new course offered by Professor Wilson that utilizes the “The Wire” as a case study. B
An excited freshman, Martin Kressler, told The Crimson:
“I’m going to do whatever I need to do to get into that class. I’m excited.”
Tomorrow, Manny Pacquiao will make his first welterweight title defense against a relatively unknown fighter, Joshua Clottey. I say relatively because while Pacquiao is boxing’s brightest star, I would bet that few casual fans have seen any of Clottey’s fights.
One of the deciding factors in this fight will be trainers. Pacquiao’s trainer, the famed Freddy Roach is a boxing genius, while Clottey’s trainer is a former cutman that was promoted to head trainer after Clottey’s original trainer had visa issues traveling from Ghana. While Clottey’s trainer claims to have “found the secret” to beating Pacquiao, I believe that he is simply playing mind games, attempting to get into Pacquiao’s head. Frankly, I doubt Pacquiao even heard the comment, and if he did, he probably wouldn’t care. If there was a secret weakness, Roach would have not only noticed it, but fixed it by fight time.
The main concern for Manny Pacquiao would be the size and strength of Joshua Clottey. Clottey is clearly the larger fighter and could weigh as much as 160 lbs (gaining 13+ pounds after weigh-in), while Pacquiao would weigh in around 150lbs. Being the larger fighter however, Clottey sacrifices the attribute that has determined Pacquiao’s last four fights; speed. Pacquiao will simply be too fast for the flat footed Clottey. And just like Diaz, De La Hoya, Hatton, and Cotto, Clottey will fail to land any power punches.
Furthermore, Pacquiao has also proven in his fight with Miguel Cotto that he can take the power of a welterweight punch, even allowing Cotto to hit him. If you don’t recall, Pacquiao was “feeling out” Cotto in the opening rounds of their November fight, allowing Cotto to punch him and test the strength of the former champion. What this means is, even if Clottey can land a power punch (which I don’t think he can), it won’t hurt Pacquiao. This time around, Pacquiao will not test the strength of Clottey. After the first bell, Pacquiao will be punching, and punching hard. He will systematically attack the face and body, slowly breaking down Clottey’s solid defense.
While Clottey’s defense is strong, it will not stand up to the constant barrage of punches that he will see Saturday night. Pacquiao trains with an unbelievable work ethic and will not tire at any moment of the fight. The constant beating will cause Clottey to open his defense in the later rounds, and Pacquiao will begin a savage beating, much like what happened with Cotto.
Soon after the fight begins, Clottey will realize that Pacquiao is too fast, and too many punches are coming at him to defend. Clottey will learn that solid defense does not win boxing matches, speed does. Pacquiao’s massive amount of punches will pile up, Clottey’s face will become disfigured, and Pacquiao will be victorious in his tile defense winning by TKO in Round 10.
I was just tweeted by @BastardMachine, Tim Goodman, the TV Critic for the San Francisco Chronicle (meaning he responded to one of my twitter comments). This is significant because he is one of 2 people that I know that truly appreciate “The Wire”, and the only person who was able to put all of my feelings about the show into the right words. Although thinking back, maybe “best television series ever made. Period” wouldn’t have been to difficult to think of on my own.
This totally made my day
Edit to add: I had a Pacquiao tweet aired on Chronicle Live tonight, I *think* this is my 3rd aired tweet, the first about the Sharks, second about Winter Olympics, and this one about Boxing. That’s some well rounded sports knowledge.
“Michael “Squints” Palledorous walked a little taller that day. And we had to tip our hats to him. He was lucky she hadn’t beat the CRAP out of him. We wouldn’t have blamed her. What he’d done was sneaky, rotten, and low… and cool. Not another one among us would have ever in a million years even for a million dollars have the guts to put the move on the lifeguard. He did. He had kissed a woman. And he had kissed her long and good. We got banned from the pool forever that day. But every time we walked by after that, the lifeguard looked down from her tower, right over at Squints, and smiled.”—The Sandlot
Preface: I was explaining to my uncle how recently I’ve become much more than a ‘casual’ sports fan. I’m constantly watching videos, reading articles, and listening to analysts talk about sports. Every day. He told me “You should put all that energy into learning about stocks, you could make a lot of money.” I denounced his idea, claiming that investing in a public company is too risky and unpredictable, citing Enron, Lehman Brothers, AIG, Merrill Lynch, and the list goes on. But that got me thinking….
Without a job for several months now, I’ve looked to alternative ways of making income. Aside from that, I’ve been looking for an opportunity to apply my baseball knowledge. Baseball is a business, and today is the day when I’ve blurred the line from fan to investor, albeit on a much much smaller scale.
After extensive research and analysis of last year’s team, roster additions of this year, and the observing the secondary ticket market, I’ve decided to purchase season tickets to the Giants, 84 home games. There’s absolutely no way I would be able to make it up to San Francisco that often, so my plan is to sell the vast majority of the tickets. I don’t plan to have any great gains on this investment, conservative estimates would put me at an ROI somewhere between 10-20%, depending on how well the team does. If the team does well and is in the playoff race, value of the tickets will increase. If the team falls out of the race, or major players are injured, ticket values will decrease. Should the Giants make the playoffs, I would have rights to purchase seats to every home playoff game, which would result in either huge gains or a way for me to watch the games at a steep discount.
Further enticing to me purchase were two benefits never before given to new season ticket holders: Meet and Greet with your favorite Giant, and a Pablo Sandoval Bobblehead autographed for each ticket purchased. This gives me a once in a lifetime opportunity to meet Tim Lincecum, the Giants pitching phenom who could eventually be one of the best pitchers in the history of the game. He has won the Cy Young Award (awarded to the best pitcher in each league) twice in his first two full years of playing. Sandoval is one of the fan favorites of the organization and autographed memorabilia of his is very sought after in the baseball collector community.
This investment further increases my interest in the team, as if it wasn’t already borderline obsessive. I follow a number of sportscasters, columnists, and beat writers on twitter, feeding me with the latest articles and videos. Now more than ever I will be pulling for my team to win games because I have a vested interest in the team performing well. Over the past couple weeks I realized that sports is a business just like any of the big names on the Fortune 500. One of the major differences is that people have fun watching sports. Fans become emotionally attached to their teams in a way that can’t be explained, only experienced.
Traders on Wall Street will spend hours watching CNBC and reading the Wall St Journal. I can spend hours watching Comcast Sports Net Bay Area and reading Sports Illustrated. Much like a trader eagerly watching a stock ticker, I will be carefully watching each pitch, throw, and swing this season not just as a fan, but as an investor.