frank....your not pulling for the bears???
may a thousand eagles crap on your cake...may you find SANCHO in your pajamas....LOL.
i hope manning gets to his apex.
frank....your not pulling for the bears???
may a thousand eagles crap on your cake...may you find SANCHO in your pajamas....LOL.
i hope manning gets to his apex.
Originally Posted by gregbeyer
Yes greg; I'm pulling for the Bears, and SANCHO? as long as he doesn't drink my beer, I'm cool.
LOL....hopefully he doesn't drink your beer...what good is a drunken SANCHO ?
I finally made it up to Chops on the Lake in Kenosha and saw Michael Stoinski, AKA "Stu," in their "Ultra Lounge."
The guy can flat out sing, as well as play the piano. He covered a lot of songs, did a funny immitation of Kermit the frog, and one of his own original tunes.
The lighting was really low in the lounge, and I didn't want to use flash, so my settings were extremely slow and at 1600 ISO.
My friend, Sara, who joined me, and I had a great time.
Sara in the lobby
Last edited by Juan C Ayllon; 02-04-2007 at 05:41 AM.
Stu plays piano while a member from the audience belts out a tune
By the way, Stu sang the Bears fight song, as well as "My Kind of Town, Chicago," which was really cool, seeing as we were just across the border in Wisconsin. I so loved him for that.
Last edited by Juan C Ayllon; 02-04-2007 at 05:39 AM.
For you Greg.
This one's the big dance for Manning
Colts quarterback has been under pressure most of his life, but he has the chance to silence his critics with a victory over the Bears today.
By Sam Farmer, Times Staff Writer
February 4, 2007
MIAMI — He has been here before.
When Indianapolis Colts quarterback Peyton Manning takes the field today for Super Bowl XLI against the Chicago Bears, he will be treading on familiar ground. True, it's his first Super Bowl, but it's not the first time his every step has been studied, questioned, critiqued and recorded for posterity.
The first time was more about Lambada tremors than Lombardi trophies.
"I signed up for this class in eighth grade called Musical Theater with the goal of getting out of computers," Manning recalled last week. "A week into the class they told me that I had to be in the school play, and I said that I didn't want to do that."
He wasn't given the option; he was in the play. It was called "The Boy Friend," and Manning, cast as "Miguel," had to wear a frilly red tuxedo shirt and yellow cummerbund. Worse, he had to dance the tango with Lola.
"I had to do it on Friday in front of the whole school, which wasn't that much pressure," he said. "But they said that you had to do it again Saturday night in front of the families, which meant in front of my two brothers, Eli and Cooper…. Now that's pressure."
But — cha, cha, cha — he survived.
"I did it," he said. "I studied that, and I went full speed on that tango. There is a video. Don't look for it. It's deep in the Manning vault, I can assure you."
There's no stashing away today's game at Dolphin Stadium. Two hundred and thirty-four countries and territories and a national television audience of 140 million will be watching as the Colts and Bears square off in a Super Bowl rich with story lines.
The game is a showcase for Manning, the league's most prolific quarterback in regular-season games but an underachiever in lose-and-you're-out scenarios. Coming into this postseason, the Colts had won just three of their last 11 playoff games. Already, they have matched that victory total, toppling Kansas City, Baltimore and New England to get here.
It's also a showcase for the Bears, making only their second appearance in the Super Bowl and first since 1986, when Walter Payton & Co. shuffled their way into NFL history. A stifling defense was the hallmark of that team. But the latest Midway Monsters haven't shown the claws they had earlier this season. After holding their first 10 opponents to fewer than 300 yards, they have allowed eight consecutive teams to surpass that mark — including Seattle and New Orleans in the playoffs.
Asked how his team compares to the legendary Bears, linebacker Brian Urlacher said: "We don't compare. They won a Super Bowl. We have a chance to do that right now, but look at their numbers — they were amazing. They did everything. They took it away, they sacked the quarterback, and they intercepted passes. They were dominant. There have been games where we were dominant this year, but they were dominant all season."
Really, defense isn't the top concern for Chicago. It's quarterback Rex Grossman, who has been wildly unpredictable with performances ranging from near-flawless to comically feeble. He had seven games this season with a passer rating higher than 100.0, second only to St. Louis' Marc Bulger, but also had a league-high five games with ratings lower than 37.0. That included a 10.6 against Arizona, a 1.3 against Minnesota, and a 0.0 against Green Bay in the meaningless regular-season finale.
"I know the pressure I'm feeling on myself," Grossman said. "I want to win this Super Bowl for my teammates and Coach [Lovie] Smith and the fans and for myself. I feel a lot of pressure in that. I'm sure it's the same way for Peyton."
Grossman grew up in Bloomington, Ind., less than an hour south of Indianapolis, and his parents are still Colts season-ticket holders. Their hearts, of course, are with the Bears.
More torn, perhaps, is the father of Colts receiver Aaron Moorehead. Emery Moorehead was a starting tight end for the '85-86 Bears. The Mooreheads are the ninth father-son combination to reach the Super Bowl. Aaron Moorehead is the second to play against his father's old team.
He said his dad's allegiances are divided "about 60-40" in favor of the Colts.
"He's not necessarily 100% or anything," Aaron Moorehead said. "He's kind of on the fence right now. He wants me to do well. He wants us to win. He's been a Bears fan his whole life. He loves the fans in Chicago. He feels like the fans in Chicago definitely deserve another championship."
Whichever team walks away victorious, history will be made. Chicago's Smith and Indianapolis' Tony Dungy are the first African American coaches to reach the Super Bowl. The Colts also have the chance to become the first team that plays its home games in a domed stadium to win a Super Bowl outdoors.
"This is what you work for your whole life," Colts center Jeff Saturday said. "From Pee Wee league on, this is as big as it gets. It's the biggest stage you can be on, so it's a surreal moment.
"You get here and look around and you see the Colts banners, you see the field and your name and their name. The two top teams in the league are here. It's a great feeling. But we have to get the win to make it really count."
And, when it's all over, one quarterback and one team will waltz their way into dizzying new altitude that will sound like a familiar reality show.
Dancing in the stars.
Last edited by kikibalt; 02-04-2007 at 09:00 AM.
With a commitment to his craft that he learned from his parents, Bears' Garza hasn't let the success of an NFL career make him forget his roots
February 4 2007
RIO HONDO, TEXAS — There is one stoplight here. At the moment, it is red.
Dust swirls across the barren pavement in the shape of giant cinnamon rolls. The cackle of a rooster echoes in the distance.
On one side of the street sits an abandoned gas station with plywood over its windows. On the other side, empty storefronts are decorated in white spray paint reading, "For Rent."
Farther down the road are a couple of cafes, a grocery store and an endless horizon of south Texas prairie stretching 25 miles to Mexico.
The few people on the sidewalks are speaking Spanish. The few kids on the nearby fields are playing soccer.
The stoplight remains red, and the longer one sits the more one wonders: How on earth do you go from here to the Super Bowl?
Across the country, in a place where the lights are blinding and the world is watching, Roberto Garza Jr. smiles.
"A miracle," he says. "That's the only way to describe it, really, a miracle."
Today in Super Bowl XLI in Miami, Garza will be a starting guard and offensive anchor for the Chicago Bears in their title bout against the Indianapolis Colts.
The Monsters of the Midway, led by the Miracle of the Rio Grande.
In a game whose theme has centered on the Super Bowl's first two black head coaches, there is no bigger cultural surprise than Garza.
In a league of nearly 1,700 players, he is among only 19 Latinos.
As the son of Mexican immigrants, he didn't speak English primarily until he left home after high school.
He was recruited not by a college, but by the Marines, whose officer warned him, "Latinos don't play football."
"I can still hear that today," he says.
He was a non-scholarship player at Division II Texas A&M Kingsville. He wasn't drafted into the NFL until the second day. He didn't become a full-time starter until this, his sixth season.
"He literally came out of nowhere," says Jaime Martinez, an assistant at Kingsville.
And after every season ends, he returns there.
Next summer, as he has every recent summer, Garza will spend six weeks in Rio Hondo with his wife, living in the garage of the tiny brick cottage where he grew up and still calls home.
Home, a town of about 2,000 people, mostly farmers, most Latino.
Home, a place besieged by power outages and plumbing issues that sometimes require toilet paper be thrown in the trash.
Home, the location of "Roberto Garza Jr. Drive."
Other players may get the commercials and most of the press, but how many players in today's Super Bowl have a street named after them?
How big is the 6-foot-2, 305-pounder in this town? The street dedication came in a ceremony before he was drafted into the NFL.
It's a two-block stretch of chipped and buckled pavement with weeds growing through the cracks, but it's all his.
On one side is the football field where he began playing, a field where he still works out.
On the other side is a row of small houses that include, of course, that childhood home still occupied by his family.
"Makes it kind of tough to mail something there," he says. "The people at Federal Express keep thinking that I'm making a mistake by writing down my name twice."
For reasons of pride and privacy, most pro athletes make it virtually impossible to distinguish their homes, choosing instead to blend in to the neighborhood.
Garza, however, is the neighborhood.
So, at the front of the house, in the middle of a tiny dirt-and-grass front yard, sits a flag pole adorned with a Chicago Bears flag.
And leaning outside the front gate is a highway sign, one of two that once stood on the town's main street. When one was stolen, the other was brought here for safekeeping.
"Home of Robert Garza Jr., NFL player" it reads.
During a recent interview in Miami, Garza laughs again.
"Did you have trouble finding my house?" he says, pausing. "Just kidding."
Roberto Garza and Coach Lovie Smith
They don't remember much. They didn't know what they were looking for, so they never really saw it.
To the good people of Rio Hondo, many living at the poverty line, many looking no
further than a high school education, the work of a budding NFL player was not on the radar.
"We never thought anybody in Rio Hondo would ever make it in football, are you kidding me?" says Chris Gonzalez, a construction worker. "We're Latinos, and most Latinos are small and can't compete with the big guys. Our teams reach a certain level, but then we always get overwhelmed with teams that are bigger and faster."
So when they saw this growing clump of a boy jogging through the streets at 6 a.m., they would shake their heads. And later, when they saw this wide young man running sprints on the football field after dark, they would sigh.
"This is a place where you see football players taking off their pads and marching with the band at halftime," says Richard Alvarez, a volunteer fireman. "This is not a big-time place."
When Garza began playing football, his parents were confused. His mother was a seamstress, his father worked on a farm, and neither of them spoke English nor understood the American game.
"I did not know anything about the sport, I didn't know what he was doing out there," says his mother, Ofelia, through an interpreter. "But I knew he was doing something that could get him hurt. I would say, no, no, no."
But not playing football, now that would hurt.
Garza fell in love with the Dallas Cowboys and their center, Mark Stepnoski. He loved the contact and the competition and didn't know how else to express that love.
"I was too fat for soccer," he says.
So, in junior high, he wrote down a list of his dreams and gave them to his mother. It is a list she still has today. On top of it was, "NFL player."
And everyone sighed again.
How could he have time to be a pro football player when he spent his summer days picking cotton? How could he be a pro football player when nobody who looked the way he did was a pro football player?
"When it comes to trying to play in the NFL, the system works against these kids," says Elisa Zuniga Salinas, a Rio Hondo High booster who financially supported Garza. "Who do they see on TV? Who are their role models?"
By the time Garza was a senior in high school, Salinas says he wasn't even supported by the school's athletic officials.
Everyone in town, it seemed, wanted this smart kid to join the Marines. Salinas instead drove him to a high school in neighboring Brownsville to ask for help in finding a college.
"He had this very clear dream that nobody else had, nobody else understood," says his mother. "Every time I'm awake, I see him working on this dream. He believed even when nobody else did."
When Garza finally joined Kingsville, it was as a non-scholarship player, paying his way with help from Salinas.
Garza was so poor, his mother couldn't even afford to call him from home.
"That's why he's a legend now, because of all the things he went through," Martinez says. "He had to prove himself to everyone."
Quietly working while others were partying or sleeping, he became an NFL prospect — and probably the only one who was given a key to the city and a prime spot in the Christmas parade after his senior season in high school.
"The parade lasts all of 15 minutes," Garza says. "But I was right there on the convertible."
This was when the street was named after him and a day — Dec. 2 — was designated Robert Garza Day in his honor.
Because it falls during the NFL season, he hasn't been back to celebrate his "day" since.
"So I guess it was more like a one-day 'day' " he says, laughing.
He likes it that way. A fourth-round draft choice of the Atlanta Falcons in 2001, Garza signed a free-agent deal with the Bears last year that guaranteed him $4 million with a chance to make $13 million, and what happened?
His family still lives in the same small house, his mother working as a cleaning woman at an office in nearby Harlingen, his father working maintenance for the county.
"The same old-school ethic that shaped Robert, his family still has that today, and there's nothing you can do to talk them out of it," says Santiago Saldana, the town mayor and a close family friend.
A chipped fountain in the middle of the small front yard looks as if it has been dry for years. Inside, even though his mother loves to cook, she does it in a kitchen the size of a closet.
The garage was refinished and turned into a bedroom, but only because Garza and his wife needed a place to sleep during the summer.
"I worked hard because I always saw my parents work hard," Garza says. "You can tell from the jobs they have now, money doesn't matter, they will always work."
The town, however, has become a bit more excited.
Today on Super Bowl Sunday at St. Helen's — Garza's tiny Catholic church — the parishioners are pulling a movie screen down over a picture of the Virgin Mary and watching the game from the parish hall.
"He showed us that anything is possible," says Natalie Tovar, a speech therapist. "Nobody thought anything like this would happen, ever."
Well, one person did.
He will be on that giant screen today, charging forward with a "C" on his helmet and bits of Rio Hondo hanging from his pads, his town and culture not a burden but an inspiration, green light after green light.
Bill Plaschke can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. To read previous columns by Plaschke, go to latimes.com/plaschke.
Last edited by kikibalt; 02-04-2007 at 12:19 PM.
Hey Greg and Frank,
Thanks for all the cool posts! And, hey! Woo-hoo! The day is here! Gooooooooooooooo Beeaaaaaars!
Hey Greg,JUAN...LIVIN' LARGE !
Actually, I wasn't so much "living large" as going cheap and fun.
I had stopped by "Wine Knows" on Friday to pick up a bottle of wine, and the wife of one of its owners told me about the beer tasting from one to four PM on Saturday. Rich Lopez and I were planning to meet up, anyways, as he had two burnt copies of a DVD which contained a fight of my trainer, David "The Weezel" (sic) Estrada, against Louis Turner. I wanted a copy and so did David. So, rather than meet up at a Buffalo Wings place in Round Lake, I thought, why not check out this beer tasting instead and get free beer?
I like those kinds of things, anyways, be it wine tastings, art shows, you name it.
The cool thing about the evening last night at Chops on the Lake, besides the great music and ambiance was that there was no cover. I was pretty amazed by that place.
Anyways, gotta run.
Last edited by Juan C Ayllon; 02-04-2007 at 12:36 PM.
Juan; what is wrong with YOUR Bears?
Colts lead Bears 16-14 in 2nd quarter By STEVEN WINE, AP Sports
MIAMI - Speedy rookie Devin Hester made sure the Bears started fast, but Peyton Manning and the Indianapolis Colts overcame a sloppy opening period to take a 16-14 lead over Chicago in the second quarter of the Super Bowl on Sunday night.
After Adam Vinatieri's 29-yard field goal brought the Colts to within 14-9, Manning led a seven-play, 58-yard drive that culminated in a short scoring run by Dominic Rhodes that gave Indianapolis the lead.
Hester became the first Super Bowl player to return the opening kickoff for a score, and his 92-yard scamper helped Chicago jump out to an early lead.
Hester, who set an NFL record with six TD returns during the regular season, took the kick on the left side and ran right, then made two cuts to elude Marlin Jackson and broke into the clear.
A wild first quarter also included four turnovers, a botched extra point, a 53-yard touchdown pass by Peyton Manning and a 52-yard run by Chicago's Thomas Jones.
Showers fell at the start, making the game the first Super Bowl to be played in rain. The conditions may have contributed to the sloppy play, and the four turnovers were a record for a first period in the Super Bowl.
Manning, playing in his first Super Bowl, sought at age 30 to fill out his remarkable resume with a ring. But he threw an interception on the Colts' first series, and they lost a fumble when Joseph Addai bobbled a handoff from Manning in Bears' territory.
On the first play after the fumble, Jones broke loose and ran to the Colts' 5. Chicago scored on third down on a 4-yard pass from Rex Grossman to Muhsin Muhammad.
Indy scored on its second possession when Reggie Wayne slipped 5 yards behind the secondary. Manning released the pass off balance under heavy pressure, and Wayne caught it at the 20 and cruised to the end zone.
The Colts' extra-point try was aborted when holder Hunter Smith had to reach to his right for the snap and bobbled it, leaving them behind 7-6.
Manning's first pass was deflected by middle linebacker Brian Urlacher and fell incomplete. The Colts picked up a first down but then had two false starts, and on third down Manning's deep pass was intercepted by Chris Harris.
It was Manning's seventh interception of the postseason. He had only nine during the regular season.
Chicago also had trouble holding onto the ball, but Indianapolis failed to take advantage of two takeaways in Bears' territory.
After scoring, the Colts tried a squib kick to keep the ball away from Hester. Gabe Reid fumbled the return and Indy recovered at the 34, but the Colts fumbled the ball back.
Indy's Dwight Freeney recovered a fumble by Cedric Benson at the Bears' 43, but Indy gained only 3 yards in three plays and had to punt.
Benson was shaken up later in the period and taken to the locker room.
Manning finished the quarter 6-for-13 for 81 yards.
The NFL's most prolific passer, Manning has been dogged for years by critics who said he couldn't win a big game. But he rallied his team from an 18-point deficit against New England to win the AFC championship game.
The game made history before it began. It featured the Super Bowl's first black head coaches, Indy's Tony Dungy and Chicago's Lovie Smith, who also happen to be close friends.
Indianapolis was playing in its first Super Bowl even though Dungy's team has been a perennial title contender in recent years. The Bears sought their 10th NFL title, and their first since the 1985 team led by Jim McMahon and Mike Singletary.
Hey guys and gals,
I don't think the Bears have anything to be ashamed of. They played their hearts out.
From where I sat, it appeared that Grossman was doing everything he could, but his nerves failed him in this very stressful game. I don't know.
As for the Bear's defense, I think they were out on the field way, way, way too long. One of the purposes of having a running game is to chew up time on the clock, as well as protect the football.
In the end, I think they simply lost to a team that outplayed them and was better than them this day.
Congratulations to Dungy and the Colts.
And, as for the Bears? Hey, they had their shot and they gave it their best. So be it.
NAW.....LIVIN LARGE, BUD.
i see how it is....YOUR bears....i have to give juan his due, the bears made it farther than my seahawks or your team.....that L.A. team... the..the ...hmmm ...slips my mind.
GregOriginally Posted by gregbeyer
I had to wash my hands off Juan's Bears after all the turn overs on their part and went to the Colts, I'm just like Don King, I had to walk out with the winners.
I saw these on the counter when I walked into the coffee shop, "Something's Brewing," to pick up my coffee.
Here are some photos from the Super Bowl party I attended. My friend, Ed, told me to use the flash, but I didn't want to.
As a result, my photos shot in those low light conditions, didn't turn out too well...
Last edited by Juan C Ayllon; 02-06-2007 at 03:18 PM.
I just sent out this press release yesterday to a local paper on a coffee house event at my church. It--or a version of it--should be running Thursday night:
‘Comfort Zone’ Christian Coffee House Kicks off Saturday Night with 'Tabor!'
A cup of coffee warms chilled hands. Laughter, conversation , and homespun gospel music remind you that you’re not alone on this frozen winter’s night. The event? It’s the Comfort Zone Christian Coffee House!
This Saturday, February 10th at 7 PM, Comfort Zone kicks off its 2007 calendar of monthly events with “Tabor,” a delightful contemporary Christian gospel act composed of fathers and sons. An open microphone, where guests share original music, poetry drama or art, follows their performance.
Scheduled the second Saturday of every month, Comfort Zone runs from 7 to 10 PM, free of charge, following the 5:30 PM Saturday service at Harvest Bible Chapel-Lake Zurich. Harvest Bible Chapel is located at 255 Quentin Road in Lake Zurich, Illinois.
So, grab a friend, come join the fun and warm up those frosted bones this Saturday! See you there!
Harvest Bible Chapel-Lake Zurich (847) 438-7440
If you're in the area on Saturday, come on out! I'll be there, which may be a bit challenging, as I'll be covering the fights at Merrillville, Indiana on Friday night.
Last edited by Juan C Ayllon; 02-07-2007 at 12:41 AM.
duane bobick checking out ice fishing on MN lake. 12 degrees below zero, -24 with windchill
I never knew how small holes were for ice fishing and how short the poles were.
Thanks for the photos of Dwayne Bobick and the ice fishing. That's very cool.
Temperatures sound comparable to what we've had here. Brrrrr!
Have a good one,
By the way, do you have regular contact with Dwayne Bobick? If so, please let me know. If he'd like to write a piece on his thoughts and reflections on his experiences with boxing compared to today, I would be interested in posting it up, along with any photos he'd like to send in.
Ditto, if you'd like to interview him.
By the way, I posted up that pic of Bobick at the Newswire page, which you can view at:
I don't have regular contact with duane, but I do have a friend who does. I will pass it on and see if he would like to be interviewed. He is a super friendly guy and has a ton of interesting stories.
Do keep me apprised of what happens.
By the way, do you or your friend have contact with Scott LeDoux?
I just posted this up in the Newswire page:
Autographed Bears Memorabilia Helps 'Youth in Crisis'
BERWYN, Ill. -- The Youth In Crisis, Inc. (YIC) 4th Annual Mardi Gras Masquerade, sponsored by Brookfield Financial Plans, Inc./Linda Sokol Francis, will feature one-of-a-kind autographed Chicago Bears sports memorabilia during their “Not So Silent” auction on Thursday, March 1, 2007. The fundraiser, being held at Rascal’s Restaurant in LaGrange Park , will auction the following exciting items:
Chicago Bear Brian Urlacher autographed football; Ron Rivera and Mark Anderson autographed framed photographs; more autographed Chicago sports souvenirs; original artwork from local artists; gift certificates to a variety of local restaurants, Chicago recreational and cultural events, and fine retailers; and much more! All profits will benefit YIC.
The Mardi Gras ticket price is $60 per person. To order tickets and become involved in this exciting live auction, please call YIC at (708) 484-7400 or email email@example.com. If you are interested in making a “virtual” bid on an auction item, reply to this email with your name and phone number. Photos and more detailed auction item descriptions will be available.
Youth In Crisis, Inc. is a non-profit, licensed child welfare organization that serves the communities of Berwyn, Cicero, Forest View, Lyons and Stickney. YIC provides valuable counseling services and prevention programs at no cost to youth and families.
yes, he knows scott.
Terrific. I think LeDoux is a fascinating person, from what I've seen. I didn't like him when I was younger, watching him as a boxer. However, I was impressed when I heard him announce boxing.
I think he'd be a fascinating person to share his experiences and thoughts on boxing.
just don't bring up the bobick fights
Fill me in on the Bobick fights. What makes them so controversial?
duane beat ledeux the first fight. ledeux comes back and beats his brother rodney bobick. Ledeux thinks he now has duanes number, he fights duane again. duane beats him a second time. ledeux thinks he is a hall of famer. He can't claim that if he's not even the best boxer in minnesota. The two losses to duane kind of stick in his craw