THE RETURN TRIP – Episode 224

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THE RETURN TRIP – Episode 224

…If it is possible to reverse immortality, I am positive that you have knocked at least a few years off of Ekcello’s life…

Mortality And Immortality by William Michael Harnett

Like it or not, the McKinneys were there to stay and now interest in that little blue dot nearer the middle of this galaxy has renewed, by necessity, if not their preoccupation. Akin to their more physical predecessors from eons past, they have renewed their consuming quest to understand that planet known as them as ĞŁŒŠ {Earth}.

“Sam, you have to realize that at one time these people traveled to all parts of the Universe,” explains Celeste, who through osmosis gathered the reasoning behind the Eridanus’ distracted abstractness. “Of all the worlds they may have encountered, the endless variety of life forms thereabout, we of Earth may well be as close to blood relatives that they have. I think that we are so much like the Eridanians of 4000 years ago that it scared the voice right out of them.”

“You mean we are a mirror image?” asks Sampson.

“Yes and when it is YOUR reflection they see, oh my…”

“It’s not my fault we do not exactly see eye-to-eye.”

You have hit it on the head Sam! If it is possible to reverse immortality, I am positive that you have knocked at least a few years off of Ekcello’s life!

 

Sampson laughs loudly at that notion, to the point of tears and side ache. He is quite aware that he has singlehandedly reintroduced some long-dead emotions to Eridanian culture. And he is in no small way very proud of it.

“Do you know that I think that the youngsters, you know the 300-400 year-olds, can understand me? I told them about opening day at the new Yankee Stadium in 2017, 70,000 screaming fans watching a ball being pitched-and-hit on manicured green grass. I even showed them that Mickey Mantle Topps rookie card I carry. They love it!”

“Somewhere, deep in their youthful existentiality, they must have a basal need for an outlet for buried emotion.” Celeste attempts to explain any possible fascination with her husband.


THE RETURN TRIP

Episode 224


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THE RETURN TRIP – Episode 223

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THE RETURN TRIP – Episode 223

…The staggering ramifications of Ekcello explaining the McKinney’s fate are lost, overshadowed by the immediate; will a hundred tomorrows erase the memories of the day we/they first met…?

… Indeed that first day on Eridanus was memorable, nothing that the passage of the intervening ten years can erase, though they can only guess how many Earth years have fallen by the wayside. For a man playing catch-up, Sampson will, to this day, swear it was only three, but then again aging does not seem to be a factor here.

And as much as things change, sometimes they do not. Celeste’s propensity for the parapsychological has firmly entrenched her as a favorite of most of the dwellers on this thought-heavy planet. The music she produced in the guise of deep-space computer communications from the bridge of the NEWFOUNDLANDER Explorer has become all the rage.

Deimostra, whose physical development should match her 16 year Earthly age, is lagging behind by ½, while her intellect races to 16².

Sammy Mac is a different story. It is not that he personally feels out of place, but the bravado mannerisms that are irretrievably stamped into his personality are an acquired taste on Eridanus. To be sure, one of the concepts these cerebral people have

the hardest time comprehending is his need for competition, as it applies to gamesmanship or one-upmanship. In Celeste they see refinement and culture / In Sampson they find football, baseball, horse racing, and a burning yearning to win and be the best.

“You must have had some form of sports somewhere along the line,” he would tell them, ignoring the telepathy that they insist he master. “We saw your ancestors on Mars you know and they seemed to be regular guys—no floating or mind-games. In fact, the recreation room on the NEWFOUNDLANDER was filled with one particular weird game… like they were gambling.”

His contention falls on deaf ears, no matter which, they ignore his primitive rants. It was as though they have erased the memory of their ancient forebears, wiped them away and started with a clean slate. What they used to be has been placed in the pay-no-mind column of the collective memory.

These days, they have been forced back in time, in the form of a clunky spaceship and three creatures whose muddling civilization has been mostly forgotten about. Sampson’s stubborn reluctance, or wrongly hardwired brain, most assuredly will remind them to avoid such impulsiveness in the future.


THE RETURN TRIP

Episode 223


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THE RETURN TRIP – Episode 25

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THE RETURN TRIP – Episode 25

…“You are looking live, at a sold-out Mars Aveeno/Sunscreen Stadium…

mars-stadium-001

“What the mood out there,” Roy asks Braden King, the communication expert, while walking under the live streaming video.

“They’re all good, Crip. Celeste has spoken with Deke’s orthopedist, so she has settled down.”

“There has been a boatload of crap going on Braden; first Fred, then Phil and toss in a reckless child.”

“He was shooting pigeons, keeping them out of the cattle feed.”

mars-planetiers-001“Key people die suddenly without warning, cattle eat, chicken s**t and little boys break bones; what else bad can happen?”

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“Good morning Earth,” Commander McKinney summons Mission Control from its funk. “You are
looking live, at a sold-out Mars Aveeno/Sunscreen Stadium,
where today you will witness a classic confrontation between the hometown Mars Planetiers and their cross-system rivals the Fighting Colonists from Earth.”

Sampson reimagines a long gone Brent Musburger sports-casting introduction, taking everyone by surprise and sanding the rough edges off the tense atmosphere.

You are too cool for your spacesuit Sam,” Roy reacts positively.

Braden Kings adds, while getting an eyeful of the Martian countryside, “That view must take you back to your old shuttle days, the first time your saw Earth from 225 miles?”

The Martian Chronicles

“Not even close, nothing can touch this,” Roy qualifies and reflects. “We all have read THE MARTIAN CHRONICLES; any speculative-fictioner worth his salt has devoured those short stories.”

“When it came time to hang a name on the first of the new shuttles, I could not help but think of Bradbury, 19-freakin-50 he wrote that stuff.

“Do you remember that his colonists mostly failed after early successes?”

“Yes, the shape shifters and the sand ships.”

“They did not react well when it came time to share the planet with those interlopers from 50 million miles away; they were prepared for the Earthlings, but ended up abhorring them.

“It was their world, yet we claimed for our own. Fiction or not, sometimes I wonder if we are doing the right thing.”

“I think it’s rather late in the game for second guessing, we’ll leave that poo-pooing to the Koreans and I talibanistan-001suppose China, India and the Talibanstani Cabals.”

Rhetoric is just rhetoric until it is backed up.

“And the Koreans accuse us of being Imperialists, when helped themselves to their neighbors to the South. And in the case of the Taliban you can say, North, East, West and every “-stan” in between.”


THE RETURN TRIP

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Episode 25


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THE RETURN TRIP – Episode 8

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THE RETURN TRIP – Episode 8

…“If you are trying to talk me out of the Commander’s chair on the New Mayflower, forget it; space is my future, not World League Baseball.”…

gut-check-001

 

The Mission of the New Mayflower is taking center stage.

“You must have girls  at every Air Force base..around the world I would bet.. but they will have to stand in line and wait Rick,” Roy is messing his dashing protégé.

“Don’t get me wrong Crip. The space program is my life and probably always will. It’s just the little things about home that I’ll be missing; Spring training, the warm Southern sun, using my Symantec Telepathic Implant, Mexican Food, spring break, the Rio de Janeiro Red Snappers.”

“It sounds like baseball, fun and sun are your life, not Space Colony,” Roy points out. “If your heart is on the diamond or beach, you better get out while you can. I know of a dozen lieutenant commanders, who would be more than pleased, if you resumed your career with the Snappers.”

Roy is giving the young gun a gut-check.

“If you are trying to talk me out of the Commander’s chair on the New Mayflower, forget it; space is my future, not World League Baseball.”

“That is why I talked NASA into letting you play baseball six months a year, Rick my boy. You and you alone had to confront that crossroad in your career, answers only you can provide. For what it is worth, I knew you would make the right decision.”

“Yeah, well it was not as cut-and-dried as you make it sound. Baseball has been in my blood since I can remember,” Commander Stanley looks back at just one of his loves. “Thank you for allowing me to have two professions at once.”

“I’ll miss going to your Rio home games, I love that city! Can you still get me free tickets?”

“Sure Crip, box seats right next to Riva Riviera,” the wildly popular South American singing superstar.

“Hubba-hubba! She can sure shake……….”


THE RETURN TRIP

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Episode 8


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Sport Origin Handbook – WIF Sports

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wif-sports-001

Origin Stories of

Famous Sports

Whether people play, or just watch, sports are a big part of many people’s lives. Besides just being entertainment, sports are also tied to many countries’ national identity, and are a billion dollar industry. Have you ever wondered how these sports got their start? Even if you think you know, what’s interesting is that the origins of sports are filled with myths and legends. These are the real stories about how these beloved games were invented.

10. Lacrosse

lacrosse

Lacrosse is North America’s oldest team sport and originated with the Eastern Woodlands Native Americans and some Plains Indians tribes. The game was played by warriors of the tribe to keep them fit and strong. Many of the rules were different from modern day lacrosse. Notably, the field of play could be 0.6 miles long. Besides just ensuring that the warriors stay in shape, the game was also important to their society. It helped strengthen diplomatic alliances, supported social conformity, and they used it to honor the gods.

In the 1840s, Europeans became interested in the game. The first recorded match between Europeans and members of the Mohawk tribe happened in August 1844. In 1856, the Montreal Lacrosse Club was formed in Quebec, Canada. When the Prince of Wales visited Montreal in August 1860, lacrosse’s popularity grew even more. A month after the Prince’s visit, a dentist named William George Beers wrote the first official rules and instructions for the game and replaced the deerskin ball with a rubber version. Since then, the game has grown in popularity and there are currently two professional lacrosse leagues operating in North America.

9. Golf

golf

The origins of golf are highly debated. The Scots take total credit for it, and they are kind of right. The modern foundation of the game started in the mid-15thcentury in Scotland. Those rules included swinging a club at a ball and moving it from point A to point B using the least amount of strokes possible.

However, there is evidence that the roots of the game sprouted in the small town of Loenen aan de Vecht in the Netherlands when it was played there in 1297. That year was the start of an annual tradition, where, on Boxing Day, the townspeople played a game named “colf.” The game consisted of two teams of four players who took turns hitting a wooden ball with a wooden stick towards several consecutive targets. Besides the mention of colf in 1297, there is other evidence of golf-like games being played throughout the Netherlands centuries before the game of golf first appeared in Scottish literature in 1636. However, as we mentioned, this is highly debatable and many Scottish people don’t believe it to be true.

8. Ice Hockey

hockey

Canadians are generally considered polite and modest people. However, one thing that many Canadians are gleefully boastful about is their ice hockey heritage. According to them, it’s their game. They are the best at it, and they invented it.

However, according to a book that was published in 2014, hockey was probably invented in England. There are references to the game all the way back to as early the 1790s, and beyond that, it is unclear who created the game. What is known is that the game was popular in England for centuries. Notable people who played included King Edward VII and Charles Darwin.

As for why it’s called hockey, the theory is that in the early games, a cork bung was used as a puck. Bungs were most commonly used as a stopper in beer casks and a popular drink at the time was hock ale.

Why Canada is often associated with hockey is that the first organized public gamewas played in Montreal on March 3, 1875. Before that, games were just played casually. About 40 people attended the the first game, which is a few more than the Arizona Coyotes get now.

7. Rugby

rugby

Rugby supposedly got its start in 1876 when 16-year-old William Webb Ellis was playing soccer at the Rugby School in Warwickshire, England, and he picked up the ball and ran with it. Unfortunately, the story can’t be true because Ellis died in 1872, four years before he was credited with inventing rugby.

The real story is that the game did grow out of the Rugby School and it was promoted by the school’s headmaster Thomas Arnold. The rules were first written in 1845 and it’s believed that the game grew out of soccer, but it’s unclear who was the first person to pick up the ball and run with it.

After boys attended the school and learned the game, they wanted to continue to play as adults. This is how the first intercounty games were organized, leading to the first clubs, which resulted in the formation of the International Rugby Football Board in 1884.

6. Cricket

cricket

To many people in North America, cricket is a bit of a mystery and seems quite complicated. However, it’s beloved in many other countries around the world and watched by billions of people. In fact, it is the second most popular sport in the world.

Cricket is believed to have gotten its start in the 13th century in rural England, where it was played by shepherds. The wicket gate of the sheep paddock was used as a target and then a ball of rags or wool was pitched at the target. An opposing player would use a shepherd’s crooked staff to prevent the ball from hitting the target.

The game was popular regionally and continued to be played throughout the centuries. The first recorded 11-to-a-side match was played in 1697 in Sussex for a prize of 50 guineas. Eight years later, the first intercounty match happened between Kent and Surrey. Rules were probably already established at this point, but the oldest known written rules for the game are dated 1744.

5. Tennis

tennis

It’s believed that the ancient Egyptians, Greeks, and Romans all played some form of tennis. However, the linage of modern tennis starts around 1000 A.D. when it was played by French monks in a monastery. They would play with their hands and a wooded ball, so it was more like volleyball. The net was usually just a rope that stretched across a courtyard. This is also where tennis got its name. While playing, the monks would yell ‘tenez’, which is French for ‘to take’, while they served the ball. Over the next two centuries, the game gained popularity throughout Europe and by the 13th century there were 1,800 indoor courts. By 1500, wooden frame racquets that were laced with sheep guts became common, as did balls made from cork.

However, the game was much different than it is today. According to The History Channel:

Games took place in narrow, indoor courts, where the ball was played off walls with roved galleries and a number of openings. Players won points by hitting the ball into netted windows beneath the roves, with the net being five feet high on the ends and three feet in the middle, which created a pronounced droop.

Modern tennis didn’t really start to emerge until 1873 when the rules were first published. In 1877, the first tennis tournament was held at Wimbledon, where they decided on the court shape and size and adopted tennis’ method of scoring.

4. Basketball

basketball

We bet it wasn’t really a surprise that Canadians claimed to be the inventors of hockey. However, did you know that a Canadian actually invented one of America’s most beloved sports, basketball?

Dr. James Naismith of Almonte, Ontario was born in 1861, and after years of working as a lumberjack, he got his degree in physical education from McGill University in Montreal. After graduating, he moved to the United States, where he got a job at the International YMCA Training School in Springfield, Massachusetts.

There, he was tasked with finding a suitable activity for a group of “incorrigibles.” The winters were cold in New England and the boys had to stay inside and quickly became bored with all the indoor games of the day. Naismith developed basketball based on a game he played as a child called Duck on a Rock. Naismith had the school’s janitor hang up two peach baskets high up at each end of the gym and a soccer ball was used. The first game was played on December 21, 1891, and the final score was 1-0. So, both teams were slightly better than the Philadelphia 76ers. Eventually, the peach baskets had holes cut in the bottom because the janitor got sick of climbing up a ladder to retrieve the ball.

From there the game grew in popularity and Naismith was alive to see it adopted into the Olympics in 1936 in Berlin. Naismith, who was the first coach of the Kansas Jayhawks basketball team, also saw the birth of NCAA Men’s Division I Basketball Championship. He passed away on November 28, 1939.

3. Baseball

baseball

The most common legend of the start of baseball is it was invented in Cooperstown, New York, during the summer of 1839 by Abner Doubleday. After inventing the game, Doubleday went on to become a hero in the American Civil War. The only problem is that none of that is true. In 1839, Doubleday would have still been at West Point.

Baseball probably descended from two games from England. The first is a game called rounders that was a children’s game that came to New England with the colonists, and the second is cricket.

The foundation of modern baseball started in 1845 when a group of men in New York formed the New York Knickerbocker Baseball Club. The most influential member of the club was a bank clerk named Alexander Joy Cartwright who came up with many of the rules that are the foundation of baseball. This included a diamond shaped infield, foul lines, and the three strike rule. Another rule that he removed, which certainly would make baseball a lot more exciting today, is that he got rid of the rule that players were allowed to throw the ball at a runner to get them out.

2. American Football

football

The first game that would eventually become American Football, or gridiron football, happened on November 6, 1869, between players from Princeton andRutgers. However, that was more of a soccer game. After that game, Yale developed their own sport that was called “The Boston Game.” It was like soccer, but if a player was being pursued by an opponent, he could pick up the oval ball and run with it, or throw or pass it. If he wasn’t being pursued, he had to kick it with his feet. Then on May 14 and 15, 1874, Yale hosted McGill University from Montreal and they also had their own set of rules for football. On the first day, they played the Boston Game.

On the second day, they played McGill’s version of football, which had more of a rugby element to it. It had 11 men per side, used an oval ball, and a player could pick it up and run with it at any time. After the games, the Yale team decided they liked McGill’s version better and adopted it. Yes, you read that right. The foundation for American football was developed by a Canadian university.

Yale’s football Captain from 1876 to 1881 was Walter Camp. He was responsible for the Intercollegiate Football Association adopting two important rules. He got rid of the opening scrum and introduced the rule where the team had to give up the ball if they didn’t move it a certain amount of yards after a specific number of downs. Camp was also responsible for many other innovations that makes football what is today. This includes 11-men-per-side, the quarterback position, the line of scrimmage, offensive signal calling and football’s unique scoring system

One thing that you may be wondering is, why is association football called soccer in North America? Well, it may be surprising to know that it is a British term. It was what they called the sport for nearly a century. Essentially, the sport is formally called Association Football, or for short, Assocc and at the time, it was common for people at English schools added “-er” to the end of words. Then, Assoccer gradually morphed into soccer. British people used soccer interchangeably all the way into Post-World War II. North Americans always called it soccer to differentiate between it and gridiron football. After World War II, America had a cultural explosion, and the British started to adopt the word football because soccer had become too American “too American.”

1. Soccer

soccer

Soccer is the most popular sport in the world today, and it could be because it’s an innate part of the human experience. Games similar to soccer can be dated all the way back to 2,500 B.C. in Ancient Egypt, where people kicked a ball around during the feast of the fertility.

In China, from 476 B.C. to 221 B.C., people played a sport called cuju, which roughly translates to “kick the ball with foot.” The point of the game was to kick a leather ball stuffed with feathers through a cloth hung between two posts. They could use any part of their body, except for their hands. Soldiers used to play it in order to keep in shape.

A similar game was played in Ancient Rome as well. There were 27 players on each team and they only had to get the ball in the other team’s goal. Because this was Ancient Rome, people were injured and killed while playing it, which sounds way more exciting than watching modern soccer.

Games similar to soccer continued to be played all the way through the middle ages and the contemporary age of soccer started in 1863. That’s when rugby football and soccer splintered off and the Football Association in England was formed. This governing body gave more rules and regulations, giving birth to modern day soccer.


Sport Origin Handbook

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– WIF Sports

Alpha Omega M.D. – Episode #326

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Alpha Omega M.D. – Episode #326

… “Dang, those pesky Dodgers! The Yanks will have trouble beating ‘em in the Series.” Slater is a baseball fan…

The Brooklyn Dodgers In Ebbets Field by Bonnie Siracusa

The Brooklyn Dodgers In Ebbets Field by Bonnie Siracusa

“Carolyn Hanes, you look absolutely wonderful! Why has everyone else aged but you… you don’t look a day over forty,” gushes Joe Slater. He looks right past an obviously invisible Bob Ford.

the-sting-001  “Thanks, Joe, but you look good your own self,” she deflects the niceties, in favor of pressing business. “Have you talked to Cousin Curt this morning?”time-zones-001

“Yes I have and he says that Joyce is due for his visit at 4:30 this afternoon.” He takes his eyes off of Lyn to look at his watch, whose little hand is on the 3 and the big hand is on the seven.

          “My watch is still set to California time,” Lyn laments.

          “It’s three thirty-five,” he converts, roughly.

          “No time to waste, is there? Let’s go, Bob.”  Suddenly visible, he is accidentally introduced.

In the heat of a Florida August day, top down and whizzing back to the city, the three are headed for County Jail straightaway. In the background, on the car’s AM radio, the Brooklyn Dodgers are thrashing Philadelphia.

“Dang, those pesky Dodgers! The Yanks will have trouble beating ‘em in the Series.” Slater is a baseball fan.

  “Talk out by us is that the Dodgers may be moving.” Bob Ford is too.

Image result for new york baseball giants

New York Baseball Giants

          “Noooo… you’re kidding me?”

          “Los Angeles.”

          “Hey, you’re all right Mr. Ford,” male bonding. “And you can have that Jackie Robinson, he wears me out.”

          “And the Giants?”

          “California can have them too.”

          They will.the-sting-001

          “Boys, boys, can we stay on track here?” True to the specie, the girl gets her way.

           Joe switches the radio to off. “The game is lost anyhow… damned Dodgers.”


Alpha Omega M.D.

Episode #326


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Alpha Omega M.D. – Episode #198

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Alpha Omega M.D. – Episode #198

…Please tell me what it was like to be knighted by the Queen.” John tries his best to get his cousin to be the least immodest, bringing up a subject of great pride to a loyal subject…

Knighted

Knighted by Eva Hollyer

John Ferrell interrupts the polarized opinion exchange about golf, “I have heard of the sport, in fact we have a club in Tallahassee, on the university grounds.”

“Splendid! I will show you how to play when we take you up on your kind invitation to visit. It sounds like you have the perfect climate.” He grips his mashie niblick.

“Don’t be aswingin’ those things in the house James, remember the chandelier?”

“One of my best passes, it was.”

“Me thinks you should be in France, shurein the Germans would flee to home at the sight of you and that stick.”

Please tell me what it was like to be knighted by the Queen.” John tries his best to get his cousin to be the least immodest, bringing up a subject of great pride to a loyal subject, when a carriage comes barreling up the winding trail leading to the Barrie country home. “That will be Harv Pearson and his bride, the publishers of that magazine I brought you.”

“Good work… with stories that match the finest photographs I have ever seen,” high praise from an accomplished judge of word and people.

     That is Sir James Barrie,” Judith nudges her husband, who may not know, “saw his first production in London, now he is one of the most prolific playwrights – ever.”

“Welcome to bonnie ol’ Scotland set a spell and let’s talk about the generosity of America!”

Judith, who almost never drinks alcohol, accepts a spot from the host. She is smart enough to sip, yet unable to prevent the inevitable shiver, as it burns a path down her esophagus.

  “Thank you, Mister Barrie. My wife has been following your career from the beginning, as she will surely tell you later.” Harv speaks, Judith is recovering. “And it is good to see you, John. We were surprised at your cable, quite an undertaking in these troubling times.” He does not recall extreme bravery as one of this man’s character.

          “Matthew, that’s what his friends call him, told us of the terrible suffering in the Isles and I was moved to gather the excess bounty that God has blessed us with and share them.”

          Neither does Harv remember him an excessive Godly man.

          “I am so inspired by John’s kindness that I myself feel twinges of guilt. I see the suffering, yet continue on with my flights of fancy.”


Alpha Omega M.D.

Peter Pan by Thomas Kincade

Episode #198


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