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NFL Preview: NFC North

Last season was interesting for the NFC North. Aaron Rodgers was hurt in week 9. Oh joy for the Lions and the Bears! Still, no benefit to the Vikings, they are just shit.

The 2013 Lions were 7-5, having just beat the Packers in week 13. Their future looked bright. I mean, seriously. Rodgers is out, and with 4 games left, and one against the Vikings, they had the NFC North in the bag, right?

Wrong.

The Lions lost all four of their last games.

What will 2014 bring?

Let’s start with my favorite team.

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Go For Two: NFL Preview NFC West

First of all, wow has this division pulled itself out of the gutter in the last few years. Want to know what I think about that?

Who gives a shit.

San Francisco Niners

I live in San Francisco. There could not be worse fans here. That’s why it’s so hard to get behind this team. When I moved here in 2004, I was excited. What a storied history between the Green Bay Packers and the Niners. I thought, how great. When my team isn’t playing, I’ll go down to the local sports bar and watch with some Niners fans. Nope. There were none there. I asked some doctor friends of mine if there were a lot of Niners fans. They said no, pretty universally. The Niners sucked, so no need to watch. Wow. What faithful fans.

McTeagues on NFL Sunday  in 2004

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Now, they come out of the wood-works.

Stupid new fans

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

San Francisco in general has gotten pretty douchey. I’m sure you have read all the articles about the Google buses, and the protests, and of 88 year old people being kicked out of their apartments because they have rent control at $800 a month for a 600sq ft apartment and the owners want to charge $3-4K. Yes, this is true. So a bunch of pimple-faced, too good to say hi to you on the street kids come into the city from San Jose and create all kinds of annoyances.

I say this because our football stadium just moved to Santa Clara, which is smack dab in the heart of Silicone Valley.

First of all, lets be realistic. The old stadium sucked. I went in October 2005 to save my beloved Peyton Manning when the Colts played the Niners. My seats sucked. There was a huge pillar in the way so that I couldn’t see anything. Thank God I didn’t wear my Colts hat, because someone would have killed me.

The fans were annoying, the stadium wasn’t accessible, my seats sucked, and it took forever to get there. Public transport was a joke.

The new stadium? Nothing has changed. Well, I think the seats are good.

Apparently, there was a soccer game there and people sat on the freeway or whatever the heck people call them here in San Francisco for hours. My friends left for the stadium 4 hours before a preseason game because of the rumors about the soccer game. Four hours!

Now there will be more Silicone Valley annoying fans, my friends seats, for a preseason game cost $170 a piece! He said some gaIMG_3679mes were upwards of $400! What the F!

New stadium pics:

IMG_3675 IMG_3678

So all I have to say about the NFC West San Francisco 49ers is that when you see the game on tv, you are watching from a much, MUCH better seat.

What do I think about their year? They will be great, but people will be figuring out Kaepernick. Plus, they will have one less win this season since they don’t have to play my Green Bay Packers.

Seattle Seahawks:

What can I say about this team? They have a great QB in Russel Wilson. They secured their stars on defense, Sherman and Thomas. The offense still has running back Marshawn Lynch. I’m never clear if there are any star receivers for Seattle, but who am I to say anything? Seattle dominated Denver in the Super Bowl and I really don’t see much changing.

The NFC North pulled the NFC West rotational schedule, or whatever the hell they call it. All I know is the best team in the NFC North has to play the best team in the NFC West, and down the ratings chart. That’s why Green Bay pulled Seattle to play this year. Fine. Whatever. We have opened our season each year with a beyond difficult team, or last years Super Bowl winner. So yay us.

I don’t put much stock in the Fail Mary being a repeat issue for the opening game of the season. I’m pretty sure no one on the Green Bay team cares anymore. However, to note, it’s very hard to win in Seattle, due to the outstanding fans — lovingly called the 12th man.

The Fail Mary was played in Seattle, and we should have won. So I’m not as concerned for Green Bay when it comes to playing in Seattle against the 12th man. Our defense, save for our Julius Peppers acquisition, is pretty much the same. We still have Don Capers. So, forget about the 12th man. I’m worried about one man, Dom Capers and his distinct inability to manage a defense.

Here is the Seattle Seahawks depth chart.

Arizona Cardinals:

This is a good football team, lest people forget, they went 10-6 in a division with Seattle and San Francisco. I would not overlook this team this year. If I had to play them, and, do I? Wait, let me check … I don’t. I would count this game as a 50-50 chance. You don’t know what you are going to get.  Preparation for a game against the Cardinals is a necessity.

They have a skilled quarterback with Carson Palmer. I know, he’s old, but I’d rather have him than say Andy Dalton. They have a fantastic coach in Bruce Arians. That is no small thing. Larry Fitzgerald is still on the team, so that is a huge weapon. Newcomers in their second year now will be making the leap, like Mathieu.

I would keep my eye on this team if I were you. Poor Lions pulled the Cardinals. I wouldn’t want to play them.

St. Louis Rams:

Who?

Just kidding.

Every year we hear how this is their year. How they win a game or two in the beginning, and everyone gets fired up. Then they fizzle out. Last year was no different. However, a lot of the misery of the season can be bestowed on Sam Bradford and that horrific injury he sustained. I’m a nurse, and man, that looked ugly. It’s been a long road to recovery on his ACL.

Honestly, I don’t even know who else is on the Rams.

Here is a Rams depth chart, for all of us.

They went 7-9, 1-5 in the conference. Yikes. They were 3-3 for their first 6 games before losing Sam Bradford against the Panthers. So, having Sam Bradford back is not like getting Aaron Rodgers back from a collarbone injury. No miraculous season just by having him back.

The Vikings got the Rams. That may be an equally matched game.

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This blog is made possible thanks to a GoDaddy coupon. Get your own blog for just $1.99. Click the link to see more.

Madeline Fresco is a novelist who lives in San Francisco. She is the author of CROSSED THE LINE, available for Kindle at Amazon.com, for Nook at Barnes & Noble, and as an ePub at other eBook retailers. You can also listen to her novel as a free, serialized audiobook at madelinefresco.com. Her second book THE CHOICE, is available on Kindle at Amazon. Her third book ANGUISH, is available for Kindle at Amazon.com

 

Outlining going good so far

So far the outlining is going good. this is such a fun stage to be in. When all the ideas are flowing. I think it’s good for my brain to get some different inputs going on.

It’s also hard trying to remember that the outline isn’t going to come all at once. There is a simmering process. A reflecting process. A time to think about how you want the book to flow. Plus, this is a bit challenging as I have to separate storylines going.

That’s a good point. I wonder if I should start with one story line first, and play that out, instead of trying to outline both at the same time. Do I start with the good or the bad? Hmm. The bad drives the plot line. Maybe I should write the bad first and then figure out how the good amplifies those negative feelings.

See what I mean? So much to think about!

Have any of you written dual storylines before where they need to sync up? How did you do it?

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This blog is made possible thanks to a GoDaddy coupon. Get your own blog for just $1.99. Click the link to see more.

Madeline Fresco is a novelist who lives in San Francisco. She is the author of CROSSED THE LINE, available for Kindle at Amazon.com, for Nook at Barnes & Noble, and as an ePub at other eBook retailers. You can also listen to her novel as a free, serialized audiobook at madelinefresco.com. Her second book THE CHOICE, is available on Kindle at Amazon. Her third book ANGUISH, is available for Kindle at Amazon.com

Outlining will begin today

Image of someone’s screenplay

Today I will begin some mild outlining. It’s so exciting, starting a new book.

I have named three of the characters, and I still need to name the husband. I think on one of my therapeutic walks I will determine his name. Maybe that will be the way through this book — very small decisions here and there.

The other thing that was suggested to me was to make it a screenplay. That could be very interesting. I’ve never written a screenplay before. It might actually be a really good learning experience and it might be quite a bit less taxing on the back. It might be a nice way to reenter the novel writing, with a little bit less of the load.

I wonder if there is any good books out thee in regards to screenwriting — I mean, available on Audible. That way I could listen to it while I relax. I really do like Audible. It might be the best of both worlds.

Well, you never know until you give it a go. Either way I would like to try.

This blog is made possible thanks to GoDaddy coupon.

Madeline Fresco is a novelist who lives in San Francisco. She is the author of CROSSED THE LINE, available for Kindle at Amazon.com, for Nook at Barnes & Noble, and as an ePub at other eBook retailers. You can also listen to her novel as a free, serialized audiobook at madelinefresco.com. Her second book THE CHOICE, is available on Kindle at Amazon. Her third book ANGUISH, is available for Kindle at Amazon.com

I’ve decided on a new book!

I have decided on a new book. I have been putting it off, as I’m not well enough to write a whole huge novel. But I feel like I have found a way to do a novel without having to tax my body too much. I can really only stand for an hour, without laying down, and not even consistently through the day.

Therefore, the book that I will be writing will be partially in blog or vlog format. I may actually even write a screenplay if I find that I just can even commit to one hour a day to this.

The book will be called Hope.

It will be centered around a young woman. She will have to face her own demons (although, not literal), makes a very complex decision, which, results in even more complicated decisions. The book will ask the question what is morally acceptable? What is the right thing to do? What can we allow others to do, that we might not find reasonable? Does our opinion change about what is acceptable,  if we have all the facts?

I’m excited.

This blog is made possible thanks to GoDaddy coupon.

Madeline Fresco is a novelist who lives in San Francisco. She is the author of CROSSED THE LINE, available for Kindle at Amazon.com, for Nook at Barnes & Noble, and as an ePub at other eBook retailers. You can also listen to her novel as a free, serialized audiobook at madelinefresco.com. Her second book THE CHOICE, is available on Kindle at Amazon. Her third book ANGUISH, is available for Kindle at Amazon.com

World Cup Thoughts

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I’m sad! I can’t believe that the USA is out of the World Cup! I was so enjoying our team still being in it!

Here are some of my thoughts about the game we played yesterday.

Our time of possession was awful the first half and most of the second. I don’t know how at the end we had more time of possession, 53% to 47%. The ball was on our side of the pitch almost the whole game!

I felt that our midfield did a horrible job of maintaining the possession. We kept making poor passes, sloppy, really. We did not seem in sync.

I also couldn’t stand Michael Bradley. He never seemed to be marking a man, just aimlessly running around. When he did get a ball, he made, most of the time, poor passes. Or when he did try to set something up, it was always off. He did have a few shinning moments. That was almost more annoying. If he would have just played to his potential, I really felt like the game would have been more winnable.

I thought DeMarcus Beasley did a great job defending. Just excellent. I also really enjoyed the play of Yedlin and for the briefest of moments, obviously, Green, as he scored our goal. I feel really good about future World Cup play with Yedlin and Green on our team.

The man of the match though, by far was Tim Howard, the goal keeper. He is the oldest guy on the field, and he did the most outstanding job. Belgium had 38 shots on goal. Tim Howard made 16 (!) saves. 16! That is a heck-of-a-lot.

That’s also where it highlights how over-matched USA was. We only shot on goal 14 times. It speaks volumes as to how much we actually had the ball on offense.

Oh, well. It was fun while it lasted. Now, I root for Les Bleus and Costa Rica. I don’t think Costa Rica has a chance, but my friend is from Costa Rica, so why not?

 

 

Yay World Cup

Love him

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I am absolutely loving watching the World Cup. It is so much fun!

In some regards, being in the “group of death” has been super interesting. No one thought that team USA would make it out of group play. There was even interviews with the coach, where HE said that we wouldn’t win World Cup.

It almost made these last few games that much more interesting.

We (team USA) played great games against our nemesis Ghana and Portugal. Portugal was the real heart-breaker. We had that game won up until the very last second, literally. But man, was that fun to watch.

Now, for the second World Cup in a row, USA has made it out of group play. That is a spectacular stat and should be celebrated. It’s also such a triumph that we won in our group at all, so these are all really, really good things.

Plus, more importantly, we get to watch more USA soccer!

This has been an interesting group play. a lot of the big powerhouses are already out. Who would have thought that Spain, Portugal, Italy, and England would all be out of the World Cup already? Certainly not in

Love him too

a world where USA was still in it!

I do have a few concerns. I don’t want team USA to be caught off guard again. I did not enjoy our team getting scored on so early in the game by Portugal, and then so late. Plus, no matter what the announcers say, I’m not very impressed with Michael Bradley. He is not first to the ball, his passes are errant, and he overshoots his targets. Of course, he can make these critical errors up to me and the rest of the fans by doing SOMETHING of merit in the next game against Belgium.

***Madeline Fresco is a novelist who lives in San Francisco. She is the author of CROSSED THE LINE, available for Kindle at Amazon.com, for Nook at Barnes & Noble, and as an ePub at other eBook retailers. You can also listen to her novel as a free, serialized audiobook at madelinefresco.com. Her second book THE CHOICE, is available on Kindle at Amazon. Her third book ANGUISH, is available for Kindle at Amazon.com