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Iskaral Pust

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  1. I enjoyed it too. I thought it gave him some deserved credit for taking on the challenge of Ferrari and their terrible car. He could have prioritized maximizing his number of personal career championships instead. It was a bit hard though to reconcile their descriptions of a shy, goofy/funny, sweet Michael Schumacher with the arrogant, ultra-driven version the fans saw. I was a big fan of his racing style, but he didn’t seem a likable person. (The real successor to Nicky Lauda)
  2. Today I had a long swim, and eschewed the wetsuit for another week. It felt fantastic to be in the water. Then I went inside, ate a banana for some energy, and did a weights session of bench press and cable row. Feeling good now, but I need to add a mid-week weights session even if work is very busy again. I probably won’t be able to play soccer this week because of a commitment at my son’s school that evening.
  3. It’s hard to believe the Seahawks lost that game today. They had a good lead at halftime and again early in the 4th. The Titans are physically tough though, and their running game eventually stampeded over the Seahawks. A missed extra point kick by Seattle allowed the tie and overtime — it’s small margins sometimes. Bears won, though. The defense carried them through that game with three interceptions and a fumble recovery. It’s no small thing to win after losing the starting QB to injury before halftime. Fields did ok as a back-up but he was wasteful in the red zone after two interceptions and the offense didn’t hold possession long enough in the 4th to see out the game more comfortably. It’s tough for a rookie to play this early.
  4. I don’t think it’s a good movie at all, but it’s a cheesy iconic movie (well made and very well shot) because it played up the nobility and selflessness of the gunfighter so much, and fed the mythology of the American West. It’s also simple enough for kids to follow. The very best westerns like The Searchers, Sergio Leone’s trilogy and Unforgiven are darker, more complicated and not for kids. These generally came well after the golden age of Westerns like Shane (but special hat tip to The Searchers coming out close to the peak of the golden age).
  5. Jammy United are back then. RIP Jimmy Greaves.
  6. I felt the same playing football on Thursday again this week. I was doing well for the first 30 minutes, but breathing heavier than I should be for the pace of the game. Then after 40 minutes my left calf tightened up badly. I went in goal for the remainder. I thought it might be cramp because I did not drink much water all day prior, but I can tell since that it’s a minor muscle strain. Abruptly returning to football after so many years out has shone a harsh light on my physical conditioning. I’ve swam a lot all summer, in addition to lifting weights, but it doesn’t prepare you for the exertion of a soccer match, especially 7v7 with constant motion and no subs. I went out today to do some light running and kicking the ball around, as much as my calf would allow without re-injury, to at least loosen up my stiff muscles. My shin splints feel very tight. I’ll continue to leave off heavy leg weights while I’m feeling so tight after soccer. I’ll do some upper body weights tomorrow. And I may swim too, although a wetsuit will be needed even if it was 81F here today. It’s beautiful weather for September, but the water is still getting colder each night.
  7. Great result for ‘Pool in a tough game. Palace are much fresher and are on a high after smashing Spurs last week. Liverpool rotated the entire back four and had some tired legs elsewhere. Definitely more rotation ahead for the LC midweek because the volume of games is intense for two more weeks until the international break (and most players don’t get a rest then either). I really hope Thiago is back soon. It would be great if Keita can stay healthy and sustain some form in his absence. Firmino may be back in two weeks. Tsimikas and Milner did well, and showed we can rest our FBs occasionally even if it does reduce our usual attacking channel. Tsimikas has done really well so far this season, aside from his fitness fading after around 60 minutes each match. Decent debut by Konate. He’ll need to work on his positioning but he did alright with a lot of responsibility in a high line against a counter-attacking opponent.
  8. I watched Drive To Survive S1-3 on Netflix and really enjoyed it. Very highly recommended. But I cannot help thinking that Christian Horner is effectively the biggest star of the series — because he gives them the most access to a top team, and the most bombastic talking points about pressure and sink-or-swim — but there’s no critical scrutiny of how badly he managed his second drivers over the three seasons, which has undermined the pursuit of the constructors’ championship. He alienated Ricciardo, then horribly managed Gasly (and created an ongoing rivalry), and got very little out of Albon. If a manager or head coach in any other sport had a similar track record in selecting, alienating or demotivating the key talent, they would get bounced from their job. Red Bull should spend some of their marketing budget on a sports psychologist for the drivers instead. Netflix naturally recommended Sunderland ‘Til I Die next, which was pretty good too, although it grated to continually hear these fans tell themselves that they are uniquely the best fans in the world and therefore deserving of success (and, yes, I recognize the irony of a Liverpool fan saying that). The sublimation of community into sports fandom or other tribal outlets amid economic and social hollowing out is a real phenomenon as the developed world middle class (working class in the UK) has suffered from globalization. We’ve also binge watched Ted Lasso over the last 2-3 weeks and are now caught up and waiting for new episodes. It’s an ok/funnyish feel-good comedy, and I think its high ratings come more from the Pollyannish escape from cynicism and darkness rather than laughs, character development, or narrative arc. Roy Kent is the break-out star here: one of the writers who was assigned an acting part too. After watching Sunderland ‘Til I Die, the glibness of Ted Lasso feels jarringly condescending, but that’s probably true of any sitcom that mines an unhappy situation for revisionist laughs. We’ve run out of good detective shows to watch. BritBox was our best source but we’ve exhausted those now. Tennison is quite good as a prequel to Prime Suspect, and Unforgotten is ok as a cold case procedural, although it’s very repetitive in how it creates a common pool of suspects each time, all having various guilty flashbacks, and it’s annoyingly self-congratulatory about championing the victims and always promising that justice will be delivered (and then the writers have to deliver a neat evidential ending to make it so). I’m looking for new recs, especially detective shows we may have overlooked.
  9. Origi named as a starter against Milan. That’s a strange call. I guess it’s good that we’re rotating and resting, but this Milan team won’t be like a typical pot 4 opponent, unfortunately. Minamino was injured playing for Japan, so I assume that’s why he wasn’t ahead of Origi. Gomez is starting at CB to rest VVD. It’s a bit strange that Matip is playing on short rest considering his history, but hopefully Joe can get back to match sharpness.
  10. On Monday evening I finally got to watch Leeds vs. Liverpool after the Peacock streaming delay. I already knew the scoreline and Elliott’s injury, which changes the viewing experience. There’s no tension but I think I absorb more with a dispassionate eye. Fabinho and Thiago together won that game. They bossed the whole game from MF. Elliott was tidy on the ball, but the other two ran the game and made Leeds look MIA in the first half, and forced them to add another bruiser in MF at half time at the expense of an attacker (Roberts for Rodrigo) just to avoid being over-run. 90% of Mane’s game was really good and much improved; all but the shooting. Having him swap back and forth with Jota brought him into the game more and allowed him a lot more opportunities — that was a good change by Klopp. He had a lot of shots blocked because he often made bad touches or bad decisions just before shooting, but his movement and energy allowed him to be a constant threat. Jota had some moments of quality on the ball but he just gets involved less, which is harmful in the central role. Salah has much more consistent quality than Mane, but his positional discipline — while good for always offering an out ball, pinning back both the LB and the LCB, and acting as the point of our main attacking triangle — boxes him in for stretches of the game. Ox really struggled as a sub. He needs some game time against easier opposition in order to build some match sharpness. It’s a cruel blow for Elliott to get a serious injury like that just as he was playing so well and carving himself a role in the team. Not unlike Gomez getting his leg broken by Burnley or Origi getting his ankle broken by Everton (or VVD or Thiago getting assaulted by Everton) — but hopefully Elliott comes back better than Gomez or Origi did.
  11. The Wire is my all-time favorite TV show too. I’ve watched it three times in the past eight years. I started another rewatch a few months ago but it was too familiar, so I put it off for another year or two. S5 felt the weakest for me. S2 was initially jarring to step away from so many great characters, but then I realized how it could deepen and broaden the whole story.
  12. The Bears showed periods of competence against a very good Rams team, interspersed by moments of genius self-destruction. Some of those blown coverages were staggering. Maybe there’s something there for them to grow into. Montgomery ran very well and Dalton can actually make throws, although the receiver corps is pretty thin beyond Robinson. The secondary used to be an area of strength — Fangio and Pagano left big shoes to fill, but it shouldn’t fall apart that quickly. Seahawks we’re scorching hot with their long passing game. It’s hard to tell if their line, either line, has improved enough because they weren’t worked very hard by the Colts.
  13. Last week Tuesday and Wednesday I was working long hours and got no exercise, but on Thursday I played my first soccer game in 7 or 8 years. It was a lot of fun. We played 7v7 outdoor on an appropriately sized field (and smaller goals). We played for 75 minutes without a break, although rotating goalkeepers gave some players a rest (not me though, my offer to take a turn was declined because there was always someone in greater need of a rest). I felt great for the first 30 minutes, floating & darting with ease, and I scored three and assisted two. For next 20 minutes I slowed down to around the average of the group, still played well, but was running lower on energy and had to find mini-rests between runs. For the last 25 minutes I was gassed and on my heels; I had to force myself to run despite opening blisters and tightening muscles. I’m just unused to to that sustained cardio demand. Obviously I should have stopped before the game ended, but I didn’t want to leave my team short-handed. In the following days I had lots of stiff muscles, primarily the stabilizers rather than the power generators, so I avoided leg weights in the meantime. I swam both Saturday and Sunday in the beautiful weather here, although the water is getting colder each time. And I did a weights session on Saturday too: bench press and cable row.
  14. That was an enjoyable game last night, and closer than expected. Good to see Dak looking healthy and game-ready. Brady just knows how to build a game-winning drive though. I wasn’t sure that should have been an OPI call, but definitely worth a review at that point. I thought perhaps the back had enough of a grasp on the receiver’s arm before the ball arrived that it was justified that the WR could shrug him off to free up his arm. The CB isn’t allowed to grapple his arm before the ball to prevent him attempting the catch. But that was just a quick take and might be harsh on the CB. Since I have a Peacock subscription, I’ll watch the Bears get destroyed on Sunday night.
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