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This site is created by Jim Laprel; avid runner, comic and blogger. See my schedule below for my latest stand-up comedy appearances. Scroll down to see my latest thoughts on various things, the New England Patriots and NFL.

"The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step"
                          Lao-tzu Chinese philosopher ( 604-531 B.C. )

New York City Marathon

Nov 4, 2018 at the 22 mile mark 

Doing a set at Strange Brew Tavern Nov 26, 2018



Here is an interview I did with a local newspaper about my running.


My blog: "All Pats Talk". Read the latest on the three time Super Bowl Champions and the rest of the NFL. Get an "outsiders" viewpoint. (click here)



                                                            Comedy Shows


Tues, Sept 21    Steve's Pinehust Tavern

                                   786 Boston Rd.   Billerica, Mass  7:30pm 


  Random Thoughts About Things

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Friday, February 28, 2014

Everyone Looks The Same


A high school in Massachusetts has decided to eliminate different colored graduation robes for boys and girls. Different colors were seen as discriminatory. I don't agree with his decision, but that's the way of the politically correct world these days. 

Things are getting out of hand. People are afraid to do or say anything because it might offend others. All it takes these days is for one person or individual to claim foul and the whole world gets turned upside down.

It won't be long before the terms male and female are no longer permitted. 

1:47 pm est 

Thursday, February 27, 2014

The Other Option


The Massachusetts Gaming Commission awarded a provisional license to a group to operate a slot machine parlor at a race track in Plainville. They won it on a 3-2 vote. It was considered the best option. Now, we must wait for the other three resort casinos to get their licenses. 

I think it's a fantasy that this will be a big economic relief to the host communities and the state. It's doomed to failure. There will be so much competition with the two casinos in Connecticut. The area can't support all of this gambling without impacting the lottery. We only need to look at Atlantic City, NJ to see how many casinos have gone bankrupt. 

That won't deter from these places being built. As they say, failure is an option. 


6:10 pm est 

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Face Time


People spend large amounts of money to look better even if it's over the top. It's happening in Brooklyn, NY where so-called hipster are paying up to $8,500 to have facial hair implants.

Some men want the full beard look, but are unable to have it because of sparse facial hair. Implants are nothing new, but usually take place on the top of the head. It might be a temporary trend, but you never know.

People still wear eyeglasses with non-prescription lenses. I never understood why. At some point in their life, they will probably need the real things. 

6:07 pm est 

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Windows Closed On DVD's

Windows 8 is so different from Vista. I was trying to upload a DVD, but experienced all sorts of issues. I finally did some research in my "Windows 8 For Dummies" book.

Apparently, Windows Media player doesn't play DVD's anymore. Microsoft feels that CD's and DVD's are going by the wayside. The technology is outdated.

I posted a comment on Facebook and got some answers on how to do it. There are several programs that I can download. I reviewed five of them. It doesn't look that easy, but I'll give it a shot. 

1:02 am est 

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Same Thing In Two Years


The Sochi Winter Olympics are history. We now move on to the Summer Games in Rio de Janeiro in 2016. The same problems will be there. 

People will be displaced from their homes. There will be great cost overruns to build venues that will have no use after the Games. 

Sochi was a financial debacle at $51 billion. It was meant to be a resort in the future, but who will go there? Will it will become a white elephant?

I still have a brochure from the committee to get the Olympics to New York City in 2012. The stadium alone would have devastated so many blocks of the West Side of Manhattan.

New York City won twice on this. They got a lot of great publicity for their effort and they lost the bid to be the host city. They saved so much money.

10:26 pm est 

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Late Night Ratings


I was a fan of The Tonight Show with Jay Leno. I thought it was a bad idea to replace him with Jimmy Fallon, but it happened. When Leno hosted his last show, I didn't watch it. I did the same for Johnny Carson in 1992 when Leno replaced him. 

The initial viewer ratings for Fallon's show are very impressive, but he has benefited by NBC's expanded Olympic coverage as a lead-in. He has rolled out an endless line of A-List guests and celebrities. There is no way he can maintain this pace. Soon he will be on a level field with his late night competition.

There is a distinct possibility that Leno will do a guest spot on David Letterman as a way of reconciling their long time feud.

There should be some good competition for the ratings. I would like to see where everyone is six months from now. I think Fallon's huge lead will disappear.

8:25 pm est 

Friday, February 21, 2014

A Bad Idea For 2026


You can always count on people to write interesting letters to the editors of newspapers. I read one today that really sounded ridiculous concerning the discussion of trying to hold the 2024 Summer Olympics in Boston. 

The writer recommended that this idea be scrapped and refocused on having the Winter Games here in 2026. They cited the numerous hockey rinks in the area as well as the close proximity to the White Mountains.

They made it sound so simple. There is still the problem of the Olympic Village for the athletes unless they want to use local college dorms during the semester break. I guess Fenway Park could become the Olympic Stadium.

A bigger reason they said was that the Games would coincide with the 250th anniversary of American independence. I don't think that would clinch the deal. 

2:31 am est 

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Less Energy Than Others


I got a report from National Grid which compared my electricity use for the last two month with my neighbors. They also did a twelve month comparison.

The report showed that I consistently used less than others. That doesn't surprise me because I live alone and try not to waste electricity.

I disagree with one of its key features. It said that I used 58% less annually than my neighbors and saved $396. The numbers are correct, but there was no savings.

Comparing me to my neighbors doesn't mean anything, especially if they have a family with kids. It makes sense that they would use more energy than me.


11:19 am est 

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

The Earth & Sun


I'm never surprised by the lack of knowledge of some people. There are basic facts in life that everyone should know, but it doesn't always happen.

According to a 2012 poll of 2,200 adults conducted by the National Science Foundation, 26% did not realize that the Earth revolves around the sun. How did they not know that? Why is that figure so high? Is anything taught in school these days?   

It's easy to see why America is slipping behind the rest of the world. It will only get worse.

2:09 pm est 

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

The Final 31


We got 8-10 inches of snow around here. It's no big deal for me. Snow never bothered me even when I was working. I use to look forward to a possible early dismissal or having the building closed for the day.

All of this snow could have been rain. It's all a matter of a few degrees at times. We have seen that in prior winters. Spring is in 31 days. March could be horrible for snow. You never know, but there is nothing you can do about it.

9:17 pm est 

Monday, February 17, 2014

Call, Don't Text


I saw a public service ad from Toyota about teen drivers and texting. It mentioned the types of text messages that the girl in the ad sent. There was a tag line indicating that she didn't send any while driving. 

I did the math and counted over 25,000 texts for the year. Is this a typical teen?  That averages out to about 80 per day. It seems excessive. It's only an ad, but I'm skeptical about its truthfulness. 

Do kids make phone calls anymore? 

5:11 pm est 

The Grip


People need to get a grip on the weather. It's February in New England and it could still snow before the first day of spring. You never know.

I think there is some type of global weather change that is hard to quantify. We are living it. I believe our environment is polluted and we must do something about it. Nobody has the answer.

There is so much more to do. 

11:14 pm est 

Saturday, February 15, 2014

The Local 400


The USDA creates a great deal of confusion for the consumer with their definition of organic and natural food. It's not as clear as it should be. It gets worse with locally grown stuff.

The government uses an arbitrary distance of 400 miles to be considered local. I always thought it was closer than that. Most people would not consider a farm 400 miles away to be local, but the government does. If they wanted to make it 600 miles, they could.

It's not like the consumer is buying from the farm stand on the outskirts of town. 

12:01 pm est 

Friday, February 14, 2014

Going For 5th Place


Spelling Bees have been around forever. I participated in one in the 8th grade, but was eliminated on my first word when I spelled "subscription" incorrectly. Kids kept trying to spell words until one student won the contest for grades 5-8.

A recent local contest was so typical for today. Prizes were given for each grade, but they went down to 5th place. Why did they give an award for coming in 5th? I'm surprised they didn't call everyone a winner. Kids are not allowed to experience defeat and learn from that. 

Parents would be outraged if their precious one was not declared a winner. 

12:10 pm est 

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Fixing The Settings


Windows 8 can be a challenge at times. My computer got attacked by some type of Adware that disabled my browser. It was difficult to diagnose at first because I was confused over the fact that my apps were working. 

I spent two hours on the problem before resolving it. I thought I could figure it out on my own, but I was wrong. Maybe, I should have researched it sooner.

It's always exciting when you start fooling around with your computer settings. 

7:03 pm est 

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Name That Station

Naming a public structure is always controversial, especially if it has been around for a long time. We saw that with the Queensboro Bridge in Manhattan when they renamed it after former Mayor Ed Koch. The Triborough Bridge makes no sense as the Robert F Kennedy Triborough Bridge.

We can now add South Station in Boston to the list. The building and site has experienced a rich history since it opened in 1899. It will now have the moniker of the Michael S Dukakis Transportation Center at South Station.

Dukakis continues to be a big advocate of public transportation and should have something named in his honor, but not South Station. After 115 years, a new name is not needed. It's too cumbersome and will never be used unless they want to confuse people and call it the Dukakis Center.

Names should be short and to the point. At least they didn't try to sell the naming rights. That would have been even more lame. 


10:02 am est 

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Can't Wait Until July


It remains to be seen if we get the foot of snow predicted on Thursday. The Mass Highway Department has done a great disservice to their plowing contractors by not paying them for work done. Most of them have only been paid through December.

The state budgeted $43 million for snow removal, but has already spent $61 million. The money will need to be part of a supplemental budget. In prior years, some contractors were not paid until July. You can't blame them for dropping the state and seeking work with private property owners. The state treats them poorly.

Contractors have salaries and expenses to pay. They can't run a successful business this way. 

12:51 pm est 

Monday, February 10, 2014

Oak Town Bridge

It was very dishearteing to hear of the problems with the $6.5 billion Oakland Bay Bridge. For that much money, it should have been done right, but it wasn't.

They said the bridge was built to last for 150 years, but water has seaped into some areas where it should not be. Is there damage?

They need to fix it real fast.

10:37 pm est 

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Model Talk

We have about eight inches of snow on the ground from the recent storm. The temperature has been cold. Snow isn't melting, but it's only forty days until spring.

Tonight, I heard about a potential snow storm on Friday. The weather guy was talking about the "computer model" giving us about nine inches at some point.

I never listen to five day forecasts. They are so useless most of the time. One in awhile, they get it right.

Maybe it will be the Valentine's Day Blizzard of 2014. Who knows?

9:44 pm est 

Saturday, February 8, 2014

No More Smoke


I think it was a good idea for CVS to stop selling cigarettes and other tobacco products in their 7,600 pharmacies across America. It was so incongruous that a company in the health business would sell such a deadly product.

CVS is trying to become more than just a pharmacy. They are emerging as a health care provider by giving flu shots and having walk-in clinics. Their mission was so incompatible with tobacco sales.

The company will take a hit in their bottom line. They will lose $2 billion in revenue from their overall sales of $123 billion. 

Other pharmacy chains are reviewing their policies about tobacco, but taking no immediate action. They realize that people also buy other items when they come in to purchase cigarettes.

It will always be about the bottom line. 

12:58 am est 

Friday, February 7, 2014

Half Is Still Big


The latest skyscraper proposal in New York City will probably never get built because it sounds too ambitious. It involves a 1,800 foot tower of 108 floors at the Hudson Yard project. That part of the city is seeing an incredible real estate boom and redevelopment of the former train yard.

Many projects often get scaled back. This looks like one of them. If they cut it in half, it's still a 900 foot tall building. That would be more manageable and realistic, but you never know with the Big Apple.

2:18 pm est 

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Shipping Costs

People who take trips on cruise ships seem to be very loyal. Rates seem to be pretty good for what you get. I have no desire to ever take one.

I got a brochure in the mail today about an 11 day cruise on the St. Lawrence River and Great Lakes. The ship was very small and could only carry 130 people in 65 rooms.

The average per person rate comes out to about $9,000. That would be about $1.2 million in revenue for the trip if it filled up.

It would be interesting to see the balance sheet on this. There must be a pretty small profit margin after you pay all of the expenses, but in the end, they make money. 


8:22 pm est 

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Bad Idea #2


At what point does a dream become a ridiculous idea? I think the proposal to have the Olympics in Boston is absurd. Now, we have another bright idea.

New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft wants to have the Super Bowl at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough. This is wrong for so many reasons.

Boston would be a great host city, but still lacks the necessary number of first class hotel rooms.

The public transportation system is a joke. On game days, there is one train on a single track that transport fans from Boston. Route 1 would be come the ultimate nightmare for cars and buses.

Everyone is jumping on the cold weather Super Bowl band wagon. It was almost 50 degrees at game time last Sunday. The next day, the New York City area got eight inches of snow. The NFL dodged a big bullet with the weather.

Robert Kraft might wield enough clout in the NFL to get the game here. 

5:34 pm est 

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

All In The Name

UMass Lowell plans to build a satellite campus building in downtown Haverhill. It's an exciting time as the revitalization will make a huge impact. The project has been named Harbor Place.

It's a catchy moniker and has a nice ring to it. The only problem is that there is no harbor. The building will be on the river, but it's 20 miles from the ocean. It implies that we live near the ocean, but we really don't. 

There is no law saying that there must be truth in a name. This is really stretching it. 

3:13 pm est 

Monday, February 3, 2014

Cheap Materials


It's so typical to see shoddy work on a public works project. A two mile section of a local state highway was reconstructed at a cost of $15 million over a three year period. The new sidewalks included utility poles relocated in the middle of them.

A historic house had a brick sidewalk out front. It had been there for over 100 years. The bricks were in great shape, but the sidewalk was buckling. It needed to be replaced for safety reasons.

The contractor used cheap bricks to cut costs. Less than six months later, the bricks are chipping and cracking. They will never last 100 years. They will probably need to be replaced in another year or two. That doesn't surprise me.

2:16 pm est 

Sunday, February 2, 2014

The Reluctant Fans


I read a great article by a female writer who wrote about "how to fake your way through the Super Bowl". It was a guide for the person who is not a fan of the game and wants to be part of the day's activities. 

The Super Bowl is one of the big events in the world's media today. It will draw a world-wide audience. However, everyone is not a fan of football. People feel they need to be part of it or risk being ostracized at work or with their friends. 

Nobody should feel this way. People should not watch the game unless they want to. Most people will watch it to conform. I think it's wrong. That's why I never attend a Super Bowl party or watch it with others. I enjoy watching it at home by myself. 

5:19 pm est 

Saturday, February 1, 2014

Back in 68

Back in 1968, this started as a normal day. I saw my parents before I went off to school. A few hours later, my father was dead of a sudden heart attack. He never knew what hit him.

I often wonder if he had any symptoms. Things were different back then when it came to cardiac care. It might have been different for him in this day and age. Nobody really knows. Every case is different.

You never know what the day might bring.

10:17 am est 

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