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Tampa Bay Rants And Raves

WEEK OF APRIL 14, 2019


A weekly look at the Tampa Bay area and national politics from a conservative viewpoint – plus a helping of sports and lifestyle items. Warning: not everything printed here should be taken at face value.


The forgotten city


This past week your HB (Humble Blogger) had a conversation with a member of the medical profession in Panama City. Having spent the first small part of our married life there, we inquired as to how things were going post hurricane. Her reply was “not well at all.” The school system in Bay County which comprises Panama City as well as Panama City Beach, Mexico Beach and other communities is faced with having to lay off some 600 school employees if aid is not forthcoming soon – that’s lot of lost jobs for a county whose entire population is less than 70 per cent of that of St. Petersburg. Yet, the rest of that state hears nothing of this sad state of affairs. It’s no wonder the medical professional and her fellow residents refer to Panama City as “The Forgotten City”. Perhaps Governor DeSantis should focus less on trips to Israel and more on the forgotten city just west of his mansion in Tallahassee.


Great Tampa Bay, politics and stuff:


1. Number of the Week: 56. That’s where Tampa Bay ranks in U.S. News and World Report’s annual ranking of the best places to live in the United States. Darned if we can think of 56 – or even six places where we’d rather live than in the Bay Area.

2. Scary statistic – in Florida, chances are one in four that the driver who may be involved with you in an accident is uninsured.

3. The Miami Herald ran a piece last week about the elimination of automatic tips at the city’s International Airport which will, in many cases, slash server’s income in half. We’ve never been a fan of automatic tips, but strongly suggest if you cannot afford or are unwilling to leave a fair and equitable tip, don’t dine out.

4. Tax week wisdom from Will Rogers: “The difference between death and taxes is death doesn't get worse every time Congress meets."

5. You’ve lived in Clearwater a long time if you remember the Harborview Club (not Center) on the top floor of what was then the Bank of Clearwater Building at Garden and Cleveland Streets.


Sports, the media and other stuff:


6. Fans of the quirky four segment series Life in Pieces will be happy to know their new season begins on April 18 with a pair of premier episodes.

7. From above, remember when network TV shows premiered in September, ran 26 episodes and then went into summer re-runs?

8. As we go to press, who had Tampa, Detroit and Seattle as the division leaders in the American League? The National League, however, is pretty much chalk with the Phils, Brewers and Dodgers leading their respective divisions.

9. Sports factoid: The San Diego Padres celebrate their 50th year as a team in 2019. Lots has happened for the Padres, but one thing that hasn’t - they have never no-hit an opposing team – the only MLB team with that dubious claim.

10. This week, we take a look at the best MLB players ever to wear uniform #5 (see back story TBRR 3/10/19) - It’s quite a list with Brooks Robinson, George Brett, Johnny Bench and Hank Greenberg wearing the number. Bench was the greatest catcher of all time but he’s not quite the legend that Joltin’ Joe DiMaggio was. The Yankee Clipper gets the nod.


Mr. Baseball


There were probably better broadcasters and certainly better players, but you have to wonder if there is a more beloved person in baseball than Bob Uecker – “Mr. Baseball”. The latest testament to the love for the guy was the Milwaukee Brewers voting him a full share of their playoff bonus from last year – over one hundred thousand dollars. Uecker, being Uecker, immediately split it into quarters and donated it to four charities. The Hall of Famer has delighted folks over the years with his roles in Mr. Belvedere, Major League and his famous Miller Lite commercials – “must be in the front row!” As mentioned, he’s in the Hall of Fame – not bad for a guy with a career batting average of exactly .200 (so why don’t they call it the Uecker line?). In this era of fancy, some would say meaningless, statistics, his wins above replacement stat or WAR for his career was -1.0. The guy may not be in the front row, but he’s in the Hall and in the hearts of tens of thousands baseball fans.

NEXT UP: Judge Bird, Peggy March and Stan Musial



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