Archive for October, 2006

Feed a family of 6 for under 10 dollars…

You know it occurred to me, you can hardly go anywhere (even McDonald’s) and get something to eat for under 10 dollars.  Sure you can get a couple of dollar sandwiches but if you biggie size your fries and get a large drink you are over the $5 per person threshold. 

I have found a place where you can feed your family of 6 for under 10 dollars.  I think this is just amazing.  I was up in the YPSI tucky area the other day and had to stop into Sam’s Club for a couple of pounds of coffee and while I was there it occurred to me that I was hungry.  Those of you who frequent Sams know they have a little snack bar there and I was in the mood for a polish dog.  So being the bold person I am I boldly approached the counter and ordered my Polish Dog and drink.  Now this was not a little half hot dog sized sandwich but almost a full foot long!  They also give you a 32 oz. cup so you can get your pop or soda of choice!  And it was only $1.59 and that included the tax!!!  Now that was amazing but there is more!  Now you can head over to the condiments table for your fruits and vegetables.  Yes, they have ketchup, mustard, relish and onions!  But wait, what do we have here!  They have generous individual sized servings of KRAUT!  So I gathered my fruits and vegetables and sat down to enjoy this feast!  You would never guess!  The Polish dog actually had some taste!  And you also get to enjoy it all afternoon!  It was more than enough for even the heartiest appetite.  You can also get a hot dog for the same price if you are not a connoisseur of Polish Dogs.  So doing a little math, 6 people times $1.59 is $9.54 so you get change back from your 10 dollar bill!


An open letter to the coach…

Dear, Romeo Crennel:

You have problems.

Not just because your Browns are 1-5. Not just because you waited too long to fire offensive coordinator Maurice Carthon.

You have to establish a sense of purpose and confidence with your team. Right now, they are doubting themselves. They are wondering about the direction of the franchise. They aren’t just beat up physically, they are ground down emotionally.

In the end, it’s up to you give this team a sense of direction and hope.

This is more than about your future as head coach of the Browns, but as a head coach, period. Can you get your players to buy into how you want them to play for the rest of the season? Can you give management and the fans a reason to believe the team can be much improved in 2007 thanks to a decent finish in 2006?

In the end, it will come down to this: Can you handle one of the most demanding coaching jobs in the NFL?

You no longer are a fresh face coming off a Super Bowl with the blessings of Bill Parcells and Bill Belichick. Those championship rings no longer glitter as bright because they didn’t happen here.

This is a much tougher challenge than the one you inherited taking the job before the 2005 season. Those Browns were desperate for any sort of leadership and integrity. General Manager Phil Savage and you were given a chance to change players, change attitudes, change everything possible — and had a desperate group willing to try it and pulling for you to be right.

Your 6-10 record looked good after a team that was 9-33 the previous two seasons. There seemed to be progress.

This season, it’s just frustration.

Belief in your plan

Your players want to believe that your coaches have plans that accent their strengths, hide their weaknesses.

Clearly, that happens on defense.

Is that because Todd Grantham is a terrific coordinator? Or because defense is your background? Perhaps it’s because Grantham and you are not just on the same page but usually in the same sentence.

So there was no need for you to micromanage the defense.

Your offense looks at that and wonders, “Why doesn’t that happen with us?”

Some of the guys had to be telling themselves, “We really like Romeo, but why can’t he see that Carthon is not helping him — or us?”

You gave Carthon freedom to shape his own offense. He alienated veteran quarterback Trent Dilfer and produced the least productive offense in the league a year ago.

Then he ripped the media and Browns fans for criticizing him when he interviewed for a job with the New Orleans Saints at the end of last season. He uncorked the famous line about the media and friends running Belichick out of town, forgetting Art Modell moved the franchise to Baltimore.

Carthon had absolutely no credibility on that subject, and he should have been wise enough to avoid it. That also should have been yet another warning sign about his leadership style.

You had to know that Carthon’s personality rubbed players wrong, that he seemed overly sensitive to criticism despite his tough-guy image.

In the end, all this happened on your watch: The overachieving defense and the baffling, bumbling offense.

Who’s to blame?

Yes, much of the blame for that has gone to Carthon. Not all of it should.

Who hired Maurice Carthon?

We all know that answer.

But we don’t know if you actually fired your offensive coordinator. Were you forced to do it? If that’s the case, you have yet another problem.

The front office can be blamed for the roster, but the coaches are clearly your department. You were given the freedom to hire your own assistants. You picked a guy who never called plays before, despite having the title of offensive coordinator with the Dallas Cowboys.

Parcells made the calls for the Cowboys. Now we know why.

With Jeff Davidson now in charge of your offense, it’s a chance for you to establish a new relationship with the coordinator. We don’t know if you need a stronger say or more fingerprints on the game plans.

We just know that you have to get it fixed.

Davidson is a highly-regarded assistant. The New York Jets wanted to make him offensive coordinator for this season. You promoted him to assistant head coach, giving him a raise to keep him. But he’s the offensive line coach, and the line has been a mess. Is that because of Davidson’s schemes, the talent or Carthon’s big picture of the offense?

I have no idea. I hope you can answer that question, because it’s critical to the turnaround your team craves.

Maybe you should have made Davidson the offensive coordinator when the Jets tried to hire him. What was the attraction of Carthon?

Certainly you should have made this change during the bye week, giving Davidson two weeks to implement changes. Instead, you waited for — what? — a miracle on offense against the NFL’s stingiest defense in the Denver Broncos.

There is plenty of fault to find with the front office, but right now, the roster is set and not about to change until the season is over.

There have been too many things happening on the field that make no sense. That has to stop, and stop now.

Those changes have to begin with you.

Terry Pluto can be reached at Sign up for Terry’s free, weekly e-mail newsletter “Direct from Pluto” at

Happy Birthday!! or where were you 24 years ago?

Well, not quite a quarter century old, but almost.  Yes, Lisa is 24 years old today.  So this is kind of an ode’ to the baby.

She has had to suffer all the consequences of being the youngest of three daughters.  There are no pictures of here as a baby whatsoever.   Always having to try and live up to the standards the “older two” set for her.  Having to try and make her own way.  “Oh well that is just Lisa”… 

She was born a small child 24 years ago today in Columbus, Ohio at Riverside Methodist Hospital.  She was about 2 weeks overdue and apparently still not quite ready for this world (or was that the other way around).  Her mother thought she was ready so we went to the hospital.  The doctors were ready to send us home but a nurse intervened and told the doctor she was already two weeks late don’t you think you should do something?

Well the next thing I remember was 1984.  There I was in Singrauli, India.  Indira Ghandi was the prime minister and all was apparently well.  Except for one thing.  I was on a 15 day trip to India on a 14 day visa.  Montezuma’s revenge had set in (I did not know he travelled to India too) and I was homesick.  I was doing ok until I had to sign a receipt that had the day’s date on it.  19.10.1984.  It was Lisa’s birthday and what in the world am I doing in Singrauli?  Well 22 years and she still reminds me that I missed her second birthday!!!

Well, plans are that we will see her today.  After moving all over the country God has placed us here together, just an hour or so apart, so we can see each other on occasion.  What a blessing this has been for us.  We are going down to BG (Bowling Green) tonite to see her wedding dress and take her out for a birthday dinner. 

Above all, despite all the hard times, hurt feelings and separation she has remained a loyal daughter and stood beside me regardless of where I was at.  I thank God for that.   We laugh together and we have cried together.  We sit across from each other and look into each other’s eyes and wonder “why does it feel like I am looking into my own eyes?”. 

She has grown into a lovely young woman.  She has a Bachelor of Science in Mathematics from Bowling Green State University.  She has a fiance, Ben Flores, who is in basic training in Georgia.  She has a black Pontiac now trimmed in Steeler colors.  (That has to go).  She also has a servants heart.  Lisa has an infectious smile and lights up a room wherever she goes.  She is an extrovert’s extrovert. 

 Happy Birthday Lisa. 

 Love,  DAD


If a tree falls in the forest…

If a tree falls in the forest and no one is there to hear it, does it make a sound?

Michigan State vs Michigan 10/7/2006 Stuck on the horns of a dilemma..

You know how time just seems to fly?  Here it is October 6th and tomorrow is the BIG GAME of the year in ANN ARBOR as the low flying Michigan State Spartans come to town to try and salvage their season and spoil the Wolverine season with a victory over the “The Victors”. 

Well as you may know I was able to acquire some tickets for the game and the time has flown by and is there no one who can use these tickets?  I met with one of my bestest friends and large Michigan Wolverine supporter for lunch yesterday and offerred the ducats to him but he said he was too busy!  He had to mow the lawn!!  I looked up the value of these duckets on the open market on and it appears they are going for about 140 bucks (sorry about the bucks references) each.  Pretty good value if you can get them for nothing?  These seats are in section 9, row 36!!!!!!!!!!!.  It is not like they are in row 95 or something like that!!!

 I might call my buddy Roger later, I know he is a Michigan fan.  He might want to go, but then again it will be crowded.  Anyways, I am stuck on the horns of a dilemna.  Have you ever seen the Far Side cartoon of stuck on the horns of a dilemna? 

As a Bucknut, this will be one day I do not mind being green.  Reminds me of Kermit the Frog singing “Its not easy being green”,  (click on Kermie to hear the song) , well anyways it is supposed to be full sunshine, 63 degrees, just a beautiful fall day for football and what am I to do? 

So good people, I bring this dilemma to  you.  I am open to suggestions.  What am I to do with these tickets?  What good can be done?  Who could benefit? 

Please leave you suggestions below.  I will make a final determination sometime later today or not depending on your input.  IDYBT, IMBO…