Hey, Hugh! That's my Skipper's hat!

Hey, gang! Thanks for  all of your birthday wishes yesterday. What? There were no birthday wishes on Hire Jim Essian yesterday? Don’t think I didn’t notice.  Yeah, yeah, yeah, Bad Kermit asked me to file a post yesterday in honor of my birthday. He also asked me to buy two overpriced hockey tickets that were behind a Pole! Didn’t he know that the last time I had to sit so close to Poles at Wrigley Field, I was sandwiched in between Mike Bielecki and Dick Pole.  Pole was trying to tell Bielecki something about his delivery, and all Bielecki (aka the Polish Prince) could do is respond with fifth-grade humor about his pitching coach’s name. Come to think of it, I joined in. It was great.

I guess I should have bought the tickets after hearing Kermit’s review of the afternoon.  But, it was my birthday, and I asked my family to BUY me the tickets for my birthday.  Why would I shell out five big ones for two seats when my ne’er do well children could just as easily shell out five big ones for the seats and give them to me?

At any rate, it’s my 58th birthday, and in honor of such a milestone, let me give you a weekly and yearly roundup with 58 items! First, of course, the weekly roundup:

That’s it for the weekly roundup. Let’s recap 2008. What are our top 20 stories?

  1. Barack Obama, a Chicagoan, was elected 44th President of the United States. Mike D. concludes that Obama is not a meth addict despite his allegiance to the White Sox.
  2. Rod Blagojevich, a Chicagoan, was arrested by federal marshals after several wiretapped phone calls indicated some wrongdoing.
  3. A bunch of companies got their BAILOUT.
  4. Jay Mariotti got his three-year contract extension in June. He quit in August.
  5. The company that signs Sweet Uncle Lou’s paycheck (and used to sign my paycheck) filed for bankruptcy. Be sure your checks still clear, Lou!
  6. The Cubs won the most games in a season in 63 years, and then… aw, forget it.
  7. Kerry Wood moved on.
  8. I knew that Jim Lefebvre, the guy who replaced me as Cubs manager, was a dirty Communist. This year, he managed the COMMUNIST Chinese baseball team. And his team tried to brawl with the Americans. Since Armenia didn’t qualify for the Olympics, let me just chant U-S-A! U-S-A!
  9. Studs Terkel passed on.
  10. Client No. 9 was ex-New York Governor Elliot Spitzer.
  11. Greg Maddux hung up his spikes after 22 remarkable seasons.
  12. A hurricane devastated Houston, moving a Cubs-Astros series from Minute Maid Park to Miller Park, where Carlos Zambrano threw his first no-hitter.  (Ted Lilly, by the way, had no-hit stuff in the second game.) Oh, and in Houston they blamed Bud Selig.
  13. Minnesota-Iowa football games are more fun than you think.
  14. Ronnie Woo-Woo Wickers changed his allegiances.
  15. The Cubs snubbed me again in favor of Ryne Sandberg.
  16. Scott Eyre gets a World Series ring. Carlos Zambrano doesn’t.
  17. The Devil Rays got good. Really.
  18. How’d that undefeated season turn out for the Patriots?
  19. Jim Edmonds gave Elias Coblentz fits. And we sort of liked Lassie in the end.
  20. Brett Favre got compared to O.J. Simpson. In 2008, O.J. went to prison, and Favre went to play for the Jets. So, yeah, I guess that’s a good comparison.

Finally, let’s do a  Best-of-HJE 2008. The best posts of the year:

That’s it for now. Here’s to a Happy 2009, and let’s hope that the Cubs right the wrong they committed after 1991 and bring me back this season.