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By Jeremy Schiffres, Daily and Sunday Freeman, Kingston, N.Y.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Bunks, bargains, baloney and baseball

Some observations from the past couple of days:

* Rhona and I spent much of Sunday at the summer camp in central Massachusetts that our son Marc attends. (It was the annual mid-session “Visiting Day.” That's Marc, above, in a picture posted on the camp's Web site.) All week, we feared the thunderstorms forecast for the latter part of the weekend would put a damper on the day. By about 2 p.m., when it was 90-plus degrees with bright sunshine and oppressive humidity, we’d have given anything for a brief downpour. Unfortunately, we never got one.

* Speaking of central Massachusetts, a Shell station just off Exit 8 of the Massachusetts Turnpike was selling gas for $4.08 a gallon on Sunday – not exactly cheap, but better than the $4.17 that most stations in the Kingston area are charging.

* And speaking of the weather, The Associated Press on Saturday wrote that Cristobal was “the first tropical storm to menace the Southeast seaboard this hurricane season.” Menace? Seriously? The storm barely brushed the Outer Banks of North Carolina, its wind speeds never topped 50 mph, the accompanying rain was no worse than moderate, and the only physical impact along the shore was that the surf was slightly higher than usual. Wow. What a menace.

* And speaking of The Associated Press (like my segues today?), the news service, in a story over the weekend, referred to my beloved Los Angeles Angels as “scrappy,” a word commonly used to describe the 2002 Angels, who won the World Series despite being made up of mostly unknown and undersized but highly energetic players. “Scrappy” doesn’t really describe the 2008 team – which is led by such brawny veteran stars as Vladimir Guerrero, Torri Hunter, Gary Matthews Jr. and Garret Anderson – but if using that adjective makes the AP happy, fine. I, however, prefer to describe the Angels (who just swept the Red Sox to become the first club with 60 wins this season) as what they actually are: The best team in Major League Baseball.



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