The equally vociferous Raymond McKay of the Rhode Island Republican Assembly also comes across as certifiable, but would do in a pinch. Mark Zaccaria, GOP sacrificial lamb for Representative Jim Langevin in the 2010 US House race, has shown P&J nothing in the way of the absurdity, mean-spiritedness, and ability to make wild, unsubstantiated accusations that are critical to receiving high marks on the Casa Diablo scorecard.
One thing to keep an eye on: whether the new chair leans toward John Loughlin or Brendan Doherty as a challenger for Representative David "Little Chi-Chi" Cicilline's US House seat in 2012. That primary is going to be a dogfight, and we don't mean poodles — a dogfight that could split the already fragile state GOP.
Your superior correspondents were delighted to see Bobby Valentine named as new manager of the Boston Red Sox. This was due in large part to the fact that Phillipe had the pleasure of playing baseball against him in high school.
As captains of their respective teams, P. and Valentine met a number of times at home plate prior to games. Even as a high schooler, Bobby V. had an electric personality, a boppa-boppa-ba-bop manner, lotsa smiles and jokes, and balls THIS BIG. He was also the best high school player ever seen in these parts — and Valentine knew it, casually barehanding short-hop throws to second from the catcher in warm-ups as if everyone did that.
When Valentine's team was in town, it meant a dozen major league scouts in the stands that day; he later became the Los Angeles Dodgers' #1 pick in the 1968 draft. Although he hit about .600 his senior year, P. threw him out twice in one game after fielding one-hop rockets and gunning the ball to first to beat him by a step — and then counting his fingers on his throbbing glove hand. The boy could fly down the baseline and was an automatic stolen base if he managed to hit a single or double.
He also flew on the football field as an all-state running back. In his sophomore year, he returned two punts and a kickoff for touchdowns against P.'s alma mater. Later wide-eyed friends on the football team told P. they couldn't believe how fast and powerful he was (despite being a stocky little s.o.b.). As he flew by them, all they heard was a loud "chugga-chugga-chugga" from his breathing.
Wethinks Red Sox fans are in for a treat, because Bobby Valentine never was — and never will be — a shrinking violet. And with firespitters like Dustin Pedroia, Kevin Youkilis, and Jacoby Ellsbury in the dugout to back him up, we could be poised for a very fun ride.
THE GOP CIRCUS KEEPS ROLLING
The all-but-inevitable departure of Herman "9-9-9" Cain from the active list of Republican contenders for the presidential nomination hasn't stopped the GOP merry-go-round. This month's fave rave is Newt Gingrich.
Recently, Newt has been seen palling around with the onerous Donald Trump, who has decided that the current sideshow needs even more color. Trump has volunteered to host the next candidates' debate, for which Newt quickly signed up. None of the other Republican candidates seem very excited to join this latest venture. We would imagine that Congressman Ron Paul is now saying to himself, "What the hell have I gotten myself into?," as he contemplates getting in front of the cameras with these two ridiculous blowhards.