June 15, 2006

Produced by Jim Burgess, 664 Smith Street, Providence, RI 02908-4327 USA, (401)351-0287
Accessible through Internet at burgess of (all E-Mail addresses are reported in this format, replace the " of " with "@"; if you bounce try sending to me from another account. Some of you have been getting bounced messages from my ISP's spam protection, if that happens to you, USE my backup E-Mail at jfburgess of!!! Don't complain that my E-Mail keeps bouncing without forwarding the bounced message to that address. Then I can forward it to the ISP help to get it dealt with.
Web Page Address:

I would like to get another game of Diplomacy, either the Modern variant or regular Dip, started very soon. Each game needs just THREE more people. Oops, one person dropped out of the Modern, so we need FOUR for that one. Please think about signing up, thanks! And I need only ONE more player to start Breaking Away. I should be able to start that next issue if someone steps forward.
I expect ALL players to be signed up on the E-Mail notification list for the szine, see below. Some of you have been complaining about this, but it is up to you to get on this list, it's easy, come ask me if you have trouble.
On that list, I notified everyone of this issue's delay. I won't repeat all that here, but a confluence of events, part of which is starting to be a recurring Spring nightmare, unavoidably delayed the publication of this issue. I intend to get back on track now, and I should be able to do that.

The postal sub price is still $1.50 per issue in the US and Canada, with double that for other foreign subbers(or $3.00 per issue sent airmail). Players in current games and standbys will continue to get the issues for free, and future game starts (except for Nuclear Yuppie Evil Empire Diplomacy, which is free) cost $20.00 ($15.00 for a life of the game subscription and $5 for the NMR Insurance. Anyone may play in subszines for free and just jack up the issue page count. See the revised game start announcements below!
Check out the connections in the Diplomatic Pouch with all of the information you need to play Diplomacy on the Internet at:
I also have taken over the Postal port/DipPouch/Postal
and TAP on the web is there at:
where the szine resides in html format. Presently, issues from #190 to the current issue are there, and I will be updating the back issues gradually someday. Also, check out Stephen Agar's more extensive efforts at: and
Peter Sullivan's subszine is out of stasis, and all the back issues can be accessed via :
Peter is now clearly back and appears in most issues! Rip Gooch and Dave Partridge had been picking up the choo-choo game slack, but Rip also has been missing in action lately, I don't have an update but he and Dave Partridge communicate. Contact Rip at xyropedes of or Dave at rebhuhn of for more info on getting into choo-choo games.
The TAP mailing list has moved! It now is even BETTER protected than it was. I even have a bit of trouble posting to it. To post to this list, send your email to: tap of But this is completely moderated, it won't go out to the list unless I approve it. In general, I intend to keep traffic down to just the szine, as we've been doing and I'll put your LOCs in here. I EXPECT all players to be on this list, especially those of you who are from foreign countries!!! You need this to find out when the szine is up on the web to check in on results.
General information about the mailing list is at:
You can sign up from there, or send E-Mails to: Tap-request of; with the word `help' in the subject or body (don't include the quotes), and you will get back a message with instructions. You must know your password to change your options (including changing the password, itself) or to unsubscribe. Normally, Mailman will remind you of your mailing list passwords once every month, although you can disable this if you prefer. This reminder will also include instructions on how to unsubscribe or change your account options. There is also a button on your options page that will email your current password to you. A big, big thank you for Millis Miller for setting this all up!!

I've been planning to put Jeff Key up here many times in the past, but someone else always made it to the list. Since we have the aborted John Beshara search, this is the time to find Jeff. I met Jeff that I remember just once, I think it was at Paul Gardner's house and one of those wild spread out cons that he used to have at his house in Vermont. But I've not heard from Jeff now in many, many years. So let's go find him! As always it is worth fifty bucks if you locate him and get him to write to me. Jeff, of course, is most famous for devising and naming the Key Lepanto game opening alliance between Austria and Italy against Turkey. For some reason, I've been seeing LOTS of Key Lepantos or aborted Key Lepantos lately. It's about time that we find Jeff and see what he's been up to. ((If anyone knows where Paul Gardner is, that would be good too....))

Feel free to spend the time looking for some of the backlog. Let's get Derek, Sylvain, Steve, Ed, Tom, Bill, Gregory, and ESPECIALLY Kevin found too!!! This is a regular continuing feature of the szine and I will be introducing a new "search for" every five issues. Moreover, you can win a $25 prize for finding some previous target who went unfound in the original $50 period. That means that if Steve Heinowski or Ed Henry or Tom Hurst or Bill Quinn or Gregory Stewart or Derek Nelson or Sylvain LaRose or John Smythe is "found" from now on it is worth $25.

Winners will receive credit for Dip hobby activities that I will pay out as requested by the winner. Subscribe to szines here or abroad, run your own contests, publish a szine, finance a web page, GO TO A DIPLOMACY CONVENTION or whatever. Spend it all right away or use me as a bank to cover hobby activities for years. What must you do to win? Get me a letter to the editor for TAP from the person we're searching for.
This is very important, just finding them doesn't do it. They have to write me a letter. The final judge as to the winner of any contest will be the target himself and I reserve the right to investigate the winning entry. When you find someone I'm looking for, you should ask him to send me a letter for print that includes a verification of who "found" him.

The British representative is the editor of Mission From God, John Harrington. John may be contacted at 1 Churchbury Close, Enfield, Middlesex EN1 3UW, UK.
E-Mail: fiendish of, John.Harrington of
Please include the full name and address of the foreign publisher with your order, if possible, as well as the szine title. Make your check in US dollars out to me personally or in GBP to John if you're doing things from that end. I will conduct business for Canadians as well, if I can, but prefer to deal in US dollars with them if possible, or Canadian dollars cash. To subscribe to American szines, the system works in reverse.
We have closed the European continental branch, as I think most of you had figured out.
And the ISE in Australia hadn't had much real action in recent years, and Brendan Whyte has moved on to Jerusalem!!! Brendan still produces what I find to be the most readable small szine in the worldwide hobby. Did you all realize that? Write to Brendan at his new Jerusalem address and ask him about subscribing, I'm not sure what the new deal will be. Department of Geography, Faculty of Social Sciences, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Mount Scopus, Jerusalem 91905, ISRAEL. His travelogues are wonderful, I particularly enjoyed the recent one describing his trip to Tallinn, Riga, Vilnius and the areas around and in-between. You all know what countries those are right? He also had a wonderful experience in a few hours on Belarussian soil stuck in a border crossing.

See for details on progress on the WORLDMASTERS04, the Semifinals have now begun. Some semifinal notables include: Egg Ferreira, Buffalo Bartalone, Lee Simpson, Joe Janbu, Sebastian Beer, Jerry Fest, Twerg O'Donnchu, Tim Sweeney, Dave Partridge, Glenn Ledder, Adam Silverman, Toby Harris, and Thomas Franke. This is one of the deepest semifinal fields for this great tournament that I've seen, with representatives from nearly all of the world's hobby communities.
And remember I got called in as a STANDBY for Turkey in game WM04R221!!! This game did end with center counts Andy Bartalone with 15, Glenn Ledder with 12, me with 6, and Dan in Austria with just Greece. In another world I could have challenged Glenn and Andy more, I wish them both luck as they move on to the semis. In particular, I don't know how Andy will fare if he continues to be as busy in his new job as he was during this game. He just didn't pay enough attention. In another world, his clock would have been cleaned.
It is helping now that I've joined the Yahoogroup WM04-Chat where this discussion is happening. You can join too! However, this forum has been very, very quiet, I hope it picks up with semis, maybe I'll have to start some discussion. But most of the talk that there has been has about Yann Clouet and the French Hobby's new "World Palmares Evaluation" of FTF Diplomacy Play. Of course, Yann Clouet comes out #1, further backing up winning the John Koning award, and I am 1442nd (in a tie with Mark Nelson and Tony Dickinson, among others!). This uses lots of tournament results, more than 750 of them, and really is quite comprehensive. See those rankings at:

DIPDOM NEWS SECTION (with letters)
Obscure and not-so-obscure ramblings on the state of the hobby and its publications, custodians, events, and individuals with no guarantee of relevance from the fertile keyboard of Jim-Bob, the E-Mail Dip world, and the rest of the postal hobby. My comments are in italics and ((double quotation marks)) like this. Bold face is used to set off each individual speaker. I should also make a note that I do edit for syntax and spelling on occasion.
The game Diplomacy is a copyrighted product owned by Hasbro and all reproductions or other use of that material in this szine is intended to be personal use and not infringe on those rights in any way. All reproductions are done at a heavy financial loss to the editor and thus are without the remotest possibility of commercial intent, except to promote THE game, the Game of Diplomacy, which you all should purchase from Hasbro or other duly licensed distributors.
Stephen Agar has matched the Hasbro rule lists and more with some of the even older rulebooks. Check these out if you like:
Nice of them to make BOTH of these available. And all seven different US rulebooks for Diplomacy can now be found here courtesy of Stephen Agar (relatively new address for this):

Check out current and back issues of Diplomacy World - Yahoogroup diplomacyworld
Also, I need any Hobby Award Nominations NOW (!!!) for:
The 2005 Don Miller Award for Meritorious Service;
The 2005 Rod Walker Award for Literature;
The 2005 John Koning Award for Player Performance;
The 2005 Fred Hyatt Award for GM Performance;
A 2005 Kathy Byrne Caruso Award for Lifetime Achievement (if warranted).
The Hobby Awards Committee is Jim Burgess (Chair and Treasurer), Fred Davis, Jr., Melinda Holley, Gary Behnen, Jamie Dreier, Paul Kenny, Mark Stretch, and Robert Lesco. I was going to publish the award ballot for this year in this issue, but I realized that I really just had to get this out first and then do that....

Diplomacy World Issue Deadlines:
Deadline Spring 2006, Issue #97: March 1, 2006
Deadline Summer 2006, Issue #98: June 1, 2006
Note that Andrew Neumann has taken over the lead editorship from Tim Haffey. Get us articles NOW!!! The March issue has been delayed but should be out shortly.
Editorial Board for Diplomacy World:
Andrew Neumann, andrewneum of - New Lead Executive Editor!
Tim Haffey, 810 53rd Ave., Oakland, CA 94601 USA; trhaffey of - Ex-Lead Editor and Archives Editor
Jim Burgess, 664 Smith Street, Providence, RI 02908-4327, USA; burgess of - Co-Editor and Publisher
Stephen Agar, 4 Cedars Gardens, Brighton, UNITED KINGDOM BN1 6YD; stephen of - Webmaster and Non-US Postal
Rick Desper, 5440 Marinelli Road, #204, Rockville, MD 20852, USA; rick_desper of - Demo Games
Dave Partridge, 15 Woodland Drive, Brookline, NH 03033, USA; rebhuhn of - US Postal

ATTENTION: There is a new company doing a new PC Diplomacy game:
This game is out and available. You all should read the interview in the Spring 2005 movement issue of the Diplomatic Pouch (and I mean ALL!!!!!!! of you!!!!!) that I think you can find at:
Contact Susana Meza, pr of, the PR Director for more info or if you want demos or help with a Diplomacy convention! To find out more general information on DIPLOMACY please visit or contact pr of

Jim O'Kelley (Fri, 31 Mar 2006 18:34:30 -0600)
Hi, Jim-Bob.
Just finished TAP 301. Another entertaining issue.
((I had asked you what role your sister Tricia O'Kelley plays on the new Julia Louis-Dreyfus vehicle "The New Adventures of Old Christine"...)) Tricia plays one of the busybody room mothers at the private school. She was in the first two episodes and will be in seven of the first 13. If it gets picked up for next season, she's guaranteed 17 episodes. ((OK, I see, I even see the family resemblance.))
Our efforts to reestablish a Diplomacy hobby in Chicago are going well. The Windy City Weasels have met four times now, with the March 12 session featuring two boards. We've got a game scheduled for April 29, already filled, and I'll probably host a game in May. We're hoping to put a three-board session together sometime this summer. Have a host, but no date as of yet. Stay tuned. Our goal is to host a tournament by next year.
You can follow along by joining our Yahoo group at
Best wishes! Jim, ajokelley of
PS I would still like to host a Weasel Moot this summer, and would be nice if that could coincide with the three-board event. Edi Birsan has said he'd consider traveling to Chicago if we can put three boards together.
((Edi seems a bit busy at the moment helping to revive the Diplomatic Pouch.))

Les Moore (Wed, 14 Jun 2006 19:38:49 -0400 (EDT))
Thanks for still sending me all those TAPs through the ether. I look forward to each one, even though I haven't yet got up the nerve sign up for a game. If you have a moment, I have a question. It is about convoys, and even though I don't think that you are a rules lawyer, hopefully you won't consider it too boring.
((No question is too boring really, especially if you want to keep the map, the rules, and adjudication in your head, even simple queries keep the mind active and accessing those neurons.))
I was looking over the board of a game that I am playing, and I asked myself a question. Why don't we just convoy that army through Denmark? I couldn't ever remember seeing anyone do this before, so I looked into the rules to see if it was allowed. The old rules (pre-2000 4th edition) say that "Fleets in Kiel and Constantinople, and in any other coastal province, may not convoy." The 4th edition rules specifically rule out a convoy through Denmark. I guess that settles the rules issue, but my question goes to the history of this. Was Denmark always considered the same as any other coastal province?
((To my knowledge, yes, but you can look at some of the copies of the old rules. See:
Some of the early rules are less clear on this point. You can read them for yourself and see how you would interpret them. Denmark had a "special rule" in the early years, but it was about movement through it.))
Considering real world geography, I would have thought that it might be useful to allow a convoy exception for Denmark, and consider it a special province. An actual fleet in Denmark need not be in port, but would more likely be patrolling Kattegat, The Sound and The Belts. I would think that allowing the convoy would open up movement across the peninsula, enhancing the dynamism of the game.
((Possibly it would, but who would it hurt? Probably it would hurt Russia, who would be less protected from convoys to Livonia. Other thoughts from the peanut gallery??))
How was it decided that Denmark couldn't convoy? Were there any house rules that said it could or couldn't? What sort of problems would be introduced if it could? Apparently there was enough confusion to prompt a clarification in the last edition of the rules. I couldn't find anything on this at The Pouch or the Diplomacy Archive. Any thoughts? Of course, if this rule were changed, somebody would be sure to request a change to allow troop movements between North Africa and Spain.
((The discussions on this were held way back in the 1960's mostly, even before my time, but others here would have more to say as they were there.))
If this is worthy of inclusion in TAP, please feel free. ((For just that reason, I'm going to do just that.))
All the best, Les Moore, les.moore of

Jonathan K. - realized I never got your last name (Wed, 15 Mar 2006 10:17:36 -0800)
Howdy, Jim, First of all, thanks for the helpful reply. I really do appreciate it.
((Tuesday, March 14, 2006, you wrote: szine came out of the pronunciation wars. szine is pronounced sssssZeen with an accent on the "Z" sound (sometimes zeen was used as an alternative to this). But the evil bad pronouncers, pronounced zine as z-I-ne more like sign (sometimes xyn was used as an alternative to this).))
Ah, yes. I remember a phone convo with Bruce Linsey back in the Great Feud days (which the hobby has sensibly left far behind, and I'm happy to do likewise) where I was asking what Kathy Byrne sounded like. He did a harsh New York accent using this `zein' pronunciation. I remember how it grated a quarter century later.
((Well, yes, that is the idea. Kathy Byrne Caruso was a good friend, even as I disagreed with her pronunciation. You are aware that she passed away from cancer a few years ago, unfortunately being one of the very last people to let the Great Feud go?? Pretty much all of the remaining living parties are presently subbers to my szine. Well, technically, I send it to a lot of them for free, and happily so.))
I remember reading that and thinking of my emotional, impulsive, judgmental youth, where all three of the above adjectives didn't really need much supporting data to kick in. The Great Feud did the hobby immense harm, and I played my vitriolic part in it. I can't unplay it, but I sure can wish John whatever peace and comfort a man can have in such a case, and I can wish Kathy was still with us. She could say `zein' all day long and I wouldn't mind.
((See John Caruso's note below. I think he's doing better now, and I'm VERY glad to hear that. On the "what to do with the old szines" there really isn't a lot. There is the Popular Culture Library at Bowling Green, but they really have most or all of what you have already and they hate sorting. If you wanted to scan them and put them up on the web, this would be a great service to the hobby, there have been some abortive efforts to do this over the years, not done well. Edi Birsan is leading a new effort to do that, and you could assist him. In a fundamental way, once the szine is scanned in, it is "saved". Even if I still prefer hard copy szines as active on-going concerns. And if you tried to sell them on E-Bay, say, no one would buy them, I would guess.))
Probably not, and certainly not unless I really inventoried them, which I am only moderately willing to do. I definitely have neither the time nor the urgency to scan them, though I agree that would be a valuable usage. I guess I just sort of assumed that there was some hobby archivist/packrat collecting such things at any given time. But I've been reading TAP for years now, and you seem to know the hobby as well as anyone. If you say there aren't many options, I tend to think you know what you're talking about.
((As I said, let's print this exchange and you can see what people say. In particular, I want to know what Edi Birsan has to say about this.))
With that in mind: can you recommend a way to deal with them that doesn't involve a recycling bin? Some of them really do go back a long ways; I got some people to unload their old collections way back when by paying postage. The only Dip folks I'm really in touch with are Brux and to a lesser degree Joan Extrom, whom I've met in person.
((No problem, Jonathan, some people might like to have what you're trying to unload, can you give me a postal address so I have some idea of where you are physically? If you're talking "banana boxes" it should be picked up. And since your collection doesn't overlap mine much, as long as my wife isn't listening in, I might be willing to take them.))
Address is the problem: I live far from everyone, and freight costs on two banana-boxfuls of paper are going to be high. If people remember specific zine names, I can pretty well give them an idea if any are in there. I was hoping they would be worth a little bit to someone, but my rational side is snarking pretty good at the notion that anyone would spend real money on top of the freight.
Best, - Jonathan, apostate of
((Let's see what kind of response we get.))

Tell me anything you like about the recent past in music. List a top two, a top ten, or a top 100, I don't care, just tell me something!! I've got my abbreviated best of 2005 below along with MANY other tidbits. Also, I have an all-time movie list from Fred Davis that REALLY will make it next issue.... sorry, Fred, for the even longer delay!

SOME DELAYED SPORTS UPDATES: Did I nail the Florida Gators in the NCAA Tournament or what? Nothing annoys Rick Desper and Warren Goesle than seeing one of my whacked out predictions coming true. It really was obvious to me as I looked at the teams that Florida was ready to make a big run, and they did.
On Barry Bonds, you all may recall I have been defending him consistently on some level. It is understandable to me, yet also incomprehensible as well that Barry has become the face of the steroids scandal. It would seem that it really should be Rafael Palmeiro, who lied before Congress AND was caught by the actual rules of Baseball. But of course he's not trying to play any more. You can say that it is all Bud Selig's fault, but even that (sorry, Goz) is too simplistic. Baseball had turned a blind eye on purpose toward performance enhancement (remember back in the 1980's when we heard that steroids didn't matter because they couldn't help you hit a baseball???) and the results have come home to roost. But Barry Bonds is a complex guy, who is desperately trying to pick up and correct his perception of the wrongs done to his father Bobby Bonds and his godfather Willie Mays. You can argue those points of the 1970's if you want, and Barry's view of them. But the evidence is strong and this is the REAL reason why people can say that racism and Barry Bonds are related. It's not racism today, but racism from the 1970's that is showing up today, in my view. I have to say that I'm happy that (as of this writing) he has finally passed Babe Ruth. I hope he goes over to the American League next year (as Hank Aaron did at the end of his career) and ultimately passes Aaron. I am not blind to anything about how it happened, but I still am rooting for it, and for Barry to find some peace. I doubt he ever will find that peace, but I hope he does. The latest issues with Human Growth Hormone, I think, will be even greater. There is a research team (still a bit underfunded even with Bud Selig's "generous" donation) at UCLA developing a Human Growth Hormone test. It will be a big deal when the test is developed for baseball, but will be an even bigger issue for football where the lack of testing probably means that the lineman who is NOT taking it is the rare exception. But this is all speculation. My firm belief is that you set the rules of the game, including the testing procedure, and then you live with it. At that point, it is the games that count, not the rules mongering. The data suggests that this is the way most people feel. Major league baseball interest and attendance remain strong. This just keeps newspapers, talking heads on ESPN, and talk shows humming.
At the start of the baseball season, I sent the following predictions to Rick, Goz, and Dave:
"Baseball season starts. My picks for the "surprises" in each division are Oakland, Detroit, and Boston in the AL, Detroit being the only one of those not to improve enough to be in the playoffs (I may be insane but Oakland and Boston are both playing Moneyball to the max wonderfully I think). In the NL, heart with the Giants, head with the Dodgers; Cincinnati AND Milwaukee since it is such a big division, and Atlanta.... since yes, they are just going to win the Division again..... Cincinnati and Milwaukee probably won't do enough to actually make the playoffs, but both will challenge the Cubs and Cardinals. Houston is going to drop like a rock..... them's my thoughts. More in next TAP, write something, eh?"
Let me add to that a couple of points. Right now, it is looking like the Wild Card in the AL may come out of the Central Division. If it does, then the Yankees and the Red Sox are fighting it out for only one slot, with only an outside chance at the wild card for the other. This could finally be the year that I can tell Goz..... no, the Yankees don't even make the playoffs - but my ongoing prediction is just that the Yankees aren't winning another WORLD SERIES any time soon. For those who have been waiting for Jim Leyland to return to managing, you can write it down, he is one of the top two or three managers of this era. Detroit is for real, as long as Leyland is pulling the strings. The improvement of the Blue Jays will mostly act to pull both the Yankees and Red Sox down enough that I really don't think both can make it to the playoffs at this point. The entirely predictable Yankees injury problems (given the age and history of the players on their team) really has them on the bubble. Yes, they may try to buy their way back in, but can they buy their way back in? I wouldn't bet on it. Also, I think Roger Clemens will choose the Astros again, but it will be interesting. He really should go play for the Rangers. ((I wrote this BEFORE Roger actually went ahead and chose the Astros again, who STILL will drop like a rock. And THEN, you'll have a bidding war to trade for Clemens once Houston is out of it. In that war, I think the Red Sox will win it..... don't be surprised if Roger ends up with the Red Sox in August.)) The Rangers CAN win the AL West, and would be the favorites IF Roger signed with them. Colorado's good young pitchers have really surprised (lots of people wondered if it was practically possible to develop a young pitcher with Coors Field as a home park) and they could win the NL West. I especially like Aaron Cook. The Reds are about to get back Eric Milton and need him to pitch well as a starter to stay in the race for the NL Central, and perhaps even win it. It would be good to see Ken Griffey, Jr. back in games that matter. He's quietly rebuilding his Hall of Fame career and I'm rooting for him to be successful at that too. And never bet against the Braves coming back to win the NL East, never.... not as long as Schuerholz and Cox are running the team in the front office and on the field respectively. This really isn't a "money issue", it's a talent evaluation issue. Schuerholz has a book just out that should be interesting reading. I've not read it, but Schuerholz' views and mine are generally compatible. He really doesn't like the part of Moneyball that dictates SABRmetrics are everything. He believes in the balance between statistics, personality, and scouting for intangibles. That's the right answer, I think. And, yes, Jeff Francoeur really will be a star someday, he's just young. With all those strikeouts, he's a Moneyball nightmare, but Schuerholz has it right. Now.... all the backs and forths between David, Goz, Rick, and me over the last few months, both Baseball and NCAA basketball..... I hope you enjoy it, feel free to chime in.

((First up, entering ESPN's NCAA basketball tournament.... I just HAVE to show you all the whole sequence. Ego? Sure, but I am wrong SOOO often....))
Rick Desper (Wed, 15 Mar 2006 02:45:22 -0800 (PST))
Well, I've created a group at ESPN, if you're interested.
Game Front: Group: PTKS tourney Password: dukesucks
Do you know if Jamie McQuinn is doing one? I don't think I can find his email address. (Well, that's technically not true...uh, never mind...) I'm picking UConn to win (big surprise, eh?)
The Red Sox are getting beaten pretty badly in most of their Spring Training games, not that that is so important...esp. with Ortiz, Varitek (and others?) away at the World Baseball do-hidgey
The other day, ARod won a game with a bases-loaded, 2-outs hit in the 9th. Talk about a guy who's hard to root for! Bill Simmons thinks his interactions with Varitek must be interesting.
((I sent it around to the TAP E-Mail list, but I guess you aren't on that? While Duke does suck, they could still win it all, though I don't think they will.))
((I'm in Jamie's and would kinda prefer to fill out only one bracket (I don't like the "cheating feeling" from doing two). But if your group has lots of "pals" I can submit a mostly the same version for fun.))
((For just the reasons you state I'm not AT ALL worried about the Sox this year, they're going to be QUITE good. There are lots of uncertainties, but I like the way they could break.))
((And I hate A-Rod more and more every year..... an update from NOW, A-Rod is mired in a horrible slump. He actually is becoming so pathetic that I'm feeling sorry for him. He does carry the weight of the world, and the Yankees, on his shoulders. But I'm even ever more sure that the Yankees will never win the World Series with A-Rod.))
Well, you could put identical picks up in PTKS, if you wish. So far the group includes Lori Fleming, Jeff Dwornicki, Brian Lee, Tim Richardson, Jeff Ladd, and myself. Tim usually does a great job with his picks.
While I agree it's strange to submit multiple, different entries, on the other hand:
- the entries are free
- the winner gets $10,000
That kinda gives one a strong incentive to enter as many times as possible.
Rick, rick_desper of
((I suppose, but it still feels like cheating to me. I'll bet you were quaking in your boots as Albany took off at the beginning of the second half.... boy, would THAT have been embarrassing!!! But you could tell that UConn was going to win as soon as they started to come back. I'm starting off pretty badly, but I'm feeling good about my quirky final four choices.... Florida all the way!!!))

Rick Desper (Sat, 18 Mar 2006 02:20:15 -0800 (PST))
At about 1:30 a.m. here, I checked the score of the UConn game. It kept me up an extra hour, following the game online. :(
To be the first #1 seed to lose to a #16 would have been particularly ignominious.
Oops - Kansas loss. I hated that regional because none of the top seeds looked worthy. Kansas was my primary pick, but I see my Electric Boogaloo picks have Memphis. Time to start rooting for Calipari. (Ugh.)
Did you put the whammy on Kansas with your comment below? I think it's your fault. :)
Why did you wander out of the PTKS group after wandering in? Curious.
My brackets really need Georgetown to beat Ohio State. I think they can do it, esp. based on the way OSU nearly lost to Davidson.
((I think I'm confused by ESPN...... ;-) On the good side, I can't seem to figure out how to enter a second pick, so I just have one pick. The UConn-Albany game was compelling. You probably missed Calhoun's interviews after the game. He was REALLY struggling. He said it was the hardest game he had EVER coached and he pulled out EVERY coaching stop that he could think of. He said he knew eventually he could get the team to dominate inside, and he did, but it was tough.))
(("To be the first #1 seed to lose to a #16 would have been particularly ignominious." Indeed, I still hope it happens some time! It would justify the existence of 16 seeds. As for rooting for Calipari, oh yeah, but I can't do that, I'm going to pick up on an underdog in that region and root for it, and in the meantime, Howland's UCLA team impresses me. I hate Calipari....))
((On putting the whammy on Kansas with my comment, I admit it, it's my fault.....))
((On ESPN, I'm trying to figure out how this works, maybe I had to set up TWO accounts, as I move back and forth between Jamie's group and the PTKS group I seem to keep moving. I'll try to get it, any advice as someone in multiple groups?))
((I think OSU is going to beat Georgetown.... REALLY, and Florida is my big pick, so it won't matter....))
((Later, on ESPN, so I think I have to just bounce back and forth.... I'm in PTKS now, but seem to have lost Rubicon...... I'll just keep bouncing.))
Yeah, you needed to create a second set of picks, it seems, and it's too late to do that. ESPN's website is far from ideal.
((I will be in one at a time, so you can see how bad my picks are in both.... ;-) just not at the same time. Were you at all interested in defending your Breaking Away title in TAP after winning the last game? I've got it almost filled..... I will of course remind you when you need to get cycle orders in.))
OK, I'll do the bike race. If Howell NMRs again, I have a shot. :)
Rick, rick_desper of
((Great, I need JUST ONE MORE player for the Bike Race!!! Someone please join up. It's free. I watched most of each of UConn's games (the one against George Mason in the airport at Charlotte with a conveniently timed and long layover. It was fascinating to watch them. I didn't want them to actually get to the final four as then they would have won it all (I think...). Florida WILL win, they will.))

Rick Desper (Mon, 27 Mar 2006 22:27:35 -0500 (EST))
I listened to the second half of the UConn/George Mason game. It seemed like UConn was blundering repeatedly and that George Mason simply could not miss a shot. Shooting 3-pointers all the time isn't supposed to be a great strategy, but if your shooting is hot, then any team can beat any other team.
I hadn't seen much or heard much about Florida (or LSU for that matter) before the tournament. I wouldn't underestimate George Mason, but yeah, Florida looks to be in a good position.
But we cannot have Florida beat UCLA in the final. Then you would win the pool! That would be like the Red Sox winning the World Series, or Rick Desper winning DipCon. :)
Rick, rick_desper of
((Go Gators..... ;-) As usual, I think ONCE you get to the Final Four, everything goes by form, so yesterday's games were no brainers to pick. Monday night will be a bit more dicey, but I really think that Florida will win. That should put me in the 95th percentile or so on picks. And of course, I will win the PTKS tourney. Next time, I see how I do this RIGHT.))

Warren Goesle (Thu, 6 Apr 2006 23:35:48 -0500)
Sorry I haven't written sooner. My picks were lost in my luggage coming back from vacation this week (ok, they lost all 3 checked bags going is it one shows up 27 hours after we do and the other two show up 32 hours after we do?).
Since it's late and I'm tired, here's the fearless Goz predictions 2K6:
((Rick Desper comments: Picking all the places?))
AL East: Yankees, Red Sox, Blue Jays, Orioles, Devil Rays. Maybe the D-Rays take 4th over a shambles of a Baltimore team, as the Orioles might not win 60 games this year.
((Rick Desper comments: Ditto. Yankees have so much hitting that they'll beat up on most major league pitching. But as for the playoffs...))
AL Central: Indians, White Sox (WC), Twins, Tigers, Royals. I had to get this pick in early, as the White Sox keep dropping in my eyes (though I think they'll be better in Aug/Sep than in Apr/May). They can't have all the pitching and all the luck they had last year, and will really have to fight off Boston, Toronto, Texas and Oakland for the Wild Card. The Indians again look like they could be really streaky this year, which of course could cut both ways, but I'll pick them to hold it together this time.
((Rick Desper comments: Hmm...yes, I kept wondering last year when the bottom would fall out on the White Sox pitching. But I'll stick with them, in spite of the early weakness by Buehrle and Garcia. White Sox, Indians, Tigers, Twins, various college teams, Royals ))
Apparently Rick has decided to rant for me this year...
AL West: Angles, Rangers, A's, Mariners. This division got really good. All 4 over .500?
((Rick Desper comments: As, Angels, Mariners, Rangers until further notice. Could happen in any order, except Texas winning.))
NL East: Braves (yawn!), Mets (WC), Phillies, Nationals, Marlins. The bottom fell out of this division, as the Marlins had another sell-off and the Nationals imploded. Look for Philly to contend for the WC.
((Rick Desper comments: Braves win. Who knows about the other teams, other than Nats and Marlins not being terribly strong.))
NL Central: Cardinals, Astros, Cubs, Brewers, Pirates, Reds. You know you're bad when I pick you behind Pittsburgh. This year it's not close, as St. Louis is the only team worth discussing in this division. The Cubs won't make .500, and the Astros won't make it by much.
((Rick Desper comments: Cardinals look very good.))
I think they win this by default more than anything else. This whole division went down in a big way. I think they get 90 wins and win by 7 games, but they play 95 within the division. They may be the weakest entry in the playoffs in either league this year.
NL West: Dodgers, Diamondbacks, Padres, Giants. This one is a big guess, as all 4 could probably win the division, but I'm playing percentages here (someone explain that concept to Jim-Bob). Collectively they'll be better than last year.
((Rick Desper comments: Hey, Jim-Bob picked Florida to win the hoops tournament. Now's not an especially good time to be picking on him. Dodgers by default.))
First, you HAVE to pick on Jim-Bob just after he's had a win, otherwise he won't think we still love him. Second, you HAVE to pick on Jim-Bob just after he's had a win, because otherwise his head swells up and explodes. Third, Jim-Bob does not get wins by playing percentages. I'm pretty sure that he'd lose big at poker tables and lottery drawings. But now and then a 50-1 shot wins in the NCAAs, MLB or the Kentucky Derby. Jim-Bob usually is picking in those ranges.
((Hey, I resemble those comments!!! And maybe I avoid playing poker and lotteries for just that reason!!!))
ALCS: Angels over Yankees.
NLCS: Braves over Mets.
((Rick Desper comments: It's hard to pick playoffs this early because it may come down to injuries. I'll pick the Red Sox to win the AL and the Cardinals to win the NL.))
WS: Braves over Angels.
((Rick Desper comments: I'll pick the Cardinals to win the WS at this point, simply because they seem to have the most balance.))
Homer. Is Jim-Bob using your email again?
((At this point, I think that Rick's choice is still not a bad guess. Goz is certainly not right with his choice, after all neither of these teams are looking like they can make the playoffs right now. Whining with snappy comebacks and insults of the great NCAA basketball tournament picker gain you no points.))
Insert standard Goz rant about inequity here.
So at what point are we disgusted with the steroid situation? I have a son who shows some athletic talent (granted, he's only 3), which isn't real surprising since Carol had an Olympic qualifying time in the 100 hurdles in high school. I don't want him looking at juiced players and emulating them to get an "edge". How do we clean this out? What do we do about the players whose heads have gotten so big that their helmets are used as jacuzzis? What do we as fans really want here? The home run is a sensation and a highlight, and we eat it up. A steroid-fueled 1998 home run race between McGwire and Sosa may have saved the game. But is it art and is it sport? If it's just entertainment then it goes in the same column as WWF, and should be treated the same. I'd like to think of it as something more. Comments?
((Rick Desper comments: The Bonds HR record pursuit should be quite interesting. I figure he'll pass Ruth but not Aaron. And there will be plenty of boos along the way. The thing is, the owners were utterly complicit in the steroid nonsense. They were quite happy to let obviously steroid-enriched players hit lots of HRs, because that increased their revenue. All the HR records of McGwire, Sosa, Bonds, and Palmeiro will be forever viewed as dubious. The guy who comes through this looking good is Griffey, who clearly stayed off the juice, and just passed Mantle. While he's had too many injuries to threaten Ruth or Aaron, he'll be a first-ballot Hall of Famer, if only because he stayed off the juice. Well that, and likely finishing with close to 600 HRs.))
((Rick is quite right about that one. See my comments elsewhere on Griffey. One really wants to root for the improbable, the Reds in the World Series. It is POSSIBLE. I still think that Baseball is not the worst of the chemically fueled sports by a long shot. People seem to agree that Hockey has the least. But Basketball and Football probably have worse overall problems with chemical enhancement. Baseball just had the worst Commissioner.))
Goz, wgoesle of
Over/Under for Wood/Prior starts this year: 20 combined.
((Rick Desper comments: Yeah, Dusty certainly has done wonders for their careers, hasn't he? A true shame to see that much pitching talent wasted.))
((That's right, and I used to like Dusty Baker, but he just seems like he can't manage a pitching staff. Let's go to Rick's response to Goz's catty snipe live and direct....))

Rick Desper (Fri, 7 Apr 2006 07:57:38 -0700 (PDT))
Well, I think part of it is not really being all that impressed by anybody, and part of it is not wanting to pick the Yankees. If the Yankees should be overwhelming favorites, I would pick them. But their pitching is still a bit thin, and Mariano is getting long in the tooth.
((I really, honestly, think there is precisely ZERO chance of the Yankees getting to the World Series. Admittedly, that is two months after Rick's comment where the injuries are mounting. Still, I think it clearly can be seen that Joe Torre is one of the game's best managers. He's pulling off an amazing managing job. But that can only get them INTO the playoffs. I'll never mention getting Florida right in the NCAA's if I'm wrong and the Yankees still stand in October..... is that enough, Goz?))
I don't like the Angels that much because their pitching is old or gone. I'm really not sold on the Indians. The Mariners could put it all together (for once), esp. having picked up Washburn to add to an already decent staff.
((Rick has been proven generally prescient about all this in particular, as well as what follows. That doesn't prove he'll be right in the end, but he very well could be.))
Lacking a compelling reason to not pick the Red Sox, I'll pick them. Besides, Schilling is going to be better this season than last, and Beckett is a good pick-up. Some acquisitions are pretty good (Crisp, Gonzalez, and Loretta) and Papelbon should take over the closer job.
It sounds like Foulke is done, which is too bad, but he's already locked up his place in Red Sox lore, so I hope the fans aren't too harsh to him. Also, the Red Sox have 2 of the 3 best hitters in the AL (Manny and Ortiz along with ARod).
The Cardinals still have Mulder, Carpenter, Pujols, and a pretty solid team.
It's very hard for me to keep up with American sports from London, other than reading websites. It's just not the same as seeing it on TV. So I'm pretty much stuck basing my guesses on the performances of previous years.
I guarantee my predictions will be wrong. (Except for this one.)
Rick, rick_desper of
((You sell yourself short. I also watch very little baseball on TV. I do "watch pitch by pitch" many games on GameDay, from which you can tell a lot about pitch locations and control, and I listen to a lot on the radio. I think your predictions will weigh in very well here (even with Pujols latest injury). We'll check it out in October. They'll be way better than Goz' selections. Note below that Dave pretty much agrees too....))

David Partridge (Fri, 7 Apr 2006 08:15:47 -0700 (PDT))
That clinches it, I'll be laying bets on Rick's line this year.
I wouldn't have even noticed that baseball had started up again if I hadn't noted a line where Peter King of SI ranted against the networks because they had the gall to show the NCAA Women's final four instead of the opening game of baseball. Seems to me they made the right choice (<:
((I think so....))
USA is now ranked #5 in the world for Soccer. Probably about the same in baseball. There's a change (<:
Dave, rebhuhn of
((That's way, way overrated for both.... ;-) The World Cup goes disasterously for the US at this writing. My response at the time was: I'm actually enjoying the baseball season so far. Since I actually appreciate Barry Bonds in all his complexity (saying I like him would go a bit too far) my only complaint on that score is the highhandedness of people who politely followed Ostrich Selig for a decade now and then have the gall to be annoyed. I've learned very little that I didn't know five years ago so far with these so-called "revelations"...... let's move ahead now to Mid-April, after about the first 2-3 weeks of the baseball season.... I know you ALL are on the edge of your seats about this.....))

Rick Desper (Wed, 19 Apr 2006 03:43:51 -0700 (PDT))
The Big Unit was shelled yesterday. Ouch! I think the Yankees really cannot afford to have him be having difficulties. Their rotation, if he's not reliable, is crap. Mussina will probably be reasonably OK, but they cannot rely on Chacon, Wang, and Wright to carry the load. That rotation just isn't competitive.
I've noticed that the Bosox are 10-4. Nice that they're at least bothering to have a traditional hot start this season. Beckett and Schilling both look very good, and Papelbon is comfortable as the closer. It would be lovely if Foulke could merit the closer role again, so Papelbon could be put into the rotation. The hitting seems fine. Nixon looks like he's back for real. Youkilis looks like he's justifying being used as an everyday starter. I guess the verdict is still out on Lowell, Loretta, and Gonzalez. I think Loretta will be fine, and Gonzalez will be OK, esp. on defense.
The Mets are cruising. Pedro got his 200th victory and, though I was concerned about his durability during his last season in Boston, I think he'll pitch at least three more seasons. Possibly more, esp. if 300 gets in range. (Not that I think he'd need 300 wins to be a Hall of Famer - he might well be one already, and 250 would certainly be enough.) I'm kind of used to seeing the Mets pick up players in the offseason every year, and having them fail every year. But this might be the season they beat the Braves. I think the Mets have the deeper roster, but it's so hard to pick the year the Braves will finally collapse. ((Quick Pedro note, I think it still was worth it for the Red Sox to let him go, all that being said. And he is a HoFer now, most particularly because of that winning percentage, what is it almost .700, he still hasn't LOST 100 games yet!!!))
So yes, it's April, and I'm wondering if this will be the year the Braves and Yankees finally lose their divisions.
Thoughts? Rick, rick_desper of
((Rick makes some good points, and yes, the Yankees are STILL in trouble, even in April. The deal on Foulke and Papelbon is this..... the Red Sox don't want to take a young budding superstar like Papelbon and jerk him back and forth between the rotation and closing. If and when they shift him, and it might not be until next year, they want to be sure they aren't moving him back. Foulke's been told that he might get the closer job back, but even if he pitches well he might not. He'll be closing tonight as Papelbon had a lot of pitches last night. So that will be an interesting test. Some of the Red Sox, still influenced by Bill James, have been talking again about the bullpen (not closer) by committee idea where you match people up to the job in the late innings, but everyone is part of the equation. I think we'll see Papelbon in the 7th inning sometime for the big strikeout. They SHOULD Have done that last night, flipflopping Timlin and Papelbon.))

Warren Goesle (Wed, 19 Apr 2006 10:23:29 -0500)
Ah, Spring, when a young Bostonian's thoughts lightly turn to burying the Yankees. Apparently an *old* Bostonian's thoughts also turn to burying the Yankees every Spring. I should know this by now. ((I come not to bury Caesar, but to praise him.... and Caesar is Torre.))
For the myopic of you who can't see beyond the Red Sox/Yankees, please note the following truths as of 19 April:
1. No one in the AL West is over .500.
2. If the playoffs started today the Cubs would be in and the Cards would be out.
3. The calendar says, "April".
3 certainties in life:
Yankees win the AL East.
Braves win the NL East.
Cubs are disappointments again.
Wake me the next time I'm wrong on any of those. ((I think you have a solid shot at being wrong on 2 of 3, but two out of three, ain't bad, to quote Jim Steinman.))
It's actually better being a Cubs' fan this year, as by this time last year they were eliminated from the playoffs. It looks like we can hang on to hope until at least the All-Star break, but I'm betting it doesn't go much beyond then. Still, it's good to see Greg Maddux as a 30-year old again, since we missed him here the last time he was pitching this well. At some point he will be recognized as one of the top-10 pitchers of all time. Since his fastball isn't any faster than mine is, that's quite an accomplishment.
Goz, wgoesle of

David Partridge (Wed, 19 Apr 2006 11:43:44 -0700 (PDT))
T-shirts on sale in Boston right now:
1. A likeness of Johnny Damon on the front, with two devil's horns coming out of his head. Underneath the likeness it reads: "JOHNNY DEMON."
2. A likeness of Johnny Damon on the front. On the back are the words: Looks like Jesus. Acts like Judas. Throws like Mary.
Burying the Yankees is a year round occupation (<:
Dave, rebhuhn of

Warren Goesle (Fri, 21 Apr 2006 07:28:13 -0500)
So 2 days ago I wrote:
"It's actually better being a Cubs' fan this year, as by this time last year they were eliminated from the playoffs. It looks like we can hang on to hope until at least the All-Star break, but I'm betting it doesn't go much beyond then."
Apparently that was enough to keep the curse alive.
When you call the Cubs' ticket line the mechanical voice says, "You have reached the ticket office of your 1908 World Champion Chicago Cubs. For ticket information on upcoming games press 1. For DL updates press 2, 3, 4..."
I've told my wife and my office that if Dusty calls I'm not here.
Wait 'til next year. Goz, wgoesle of
((Hehehehe, it is a delight being a Cubs fan. IMHO, they are in a bit of a difficult spot deciding how to play for next year. They could just decide all these guys on the DL are useless and blow it up and go young. Or Maddox looks like he has two more years in him, you can keep excellent setup guys like Scott Eyre, and try to wait until next year. Dusty should go....))

Warren Goesle (Thu, 25 May 2006 06:34:54 -0500)
So I check the Wednesday Tribune Sports' section and find that someone new has switched sports. Actually, they switched a long time ago, I just didn't notice and you guys might not have either. Mike Greenwell, last seen prowling the outfield at Fenway in 1996 or so, left the game at age 32 and headed to...stock car racing. After winning 37 races at local tracks in the late model divisions, which might not even be equivalent to baseball's Class A ball, he gets to make his debut this weekend in the Craftsman Truck Series, which is NASCAR's Class Double-A minor league, at Mansfield, Ohio (he apparently has a 3 race contract, but I don't know what other Truck races he'll run). I won't make the race, and I don't get Speed Channel so I can't watch it either, but I thought you might want to know. Or not.
Goz, wgoesle of

Warren Goesle (Fri, 26 May 2006 23:27:25 -0500)
The bad news is that qualifying for the Truck race in Mansfield, OH was rained out. The good news is that, due to the screwy way that the rules read for such cases, Mike Greenwell gets to start from the position that his car is in in owner points for the race tomorrow, which is 20th out of 36. 2PM EDT on Speed, for those of you playing at home.
I've never seen Mansfield Speedway on TV, but at 1/2 mile and a lot of banking, and several drivers not particularly polished in the field (besides Greenwell), it's likely to have 100 laps out of 250 under caution.
Goz, wgoesle of
((Yeah, this all got coverage here too..... both originally when Greenie retired and now. He could have played baseball for five more years if he had wanted to.))

Warren Goesle (Sat, 27 May 2006 07:34:59 -0500)
In the interview I read he said he had offers from 20 teams to play baseball when he retired, but his first love was racing.
Goz, wgoesle of
((Personal opinion, that's Greenie's huge ego talking. There never was anyone in the Red Sox locker room quite like him. We miss him. But he could have played longer.))

Warren Goesle (Sun, 28 May 2006 22:32:32 -0500)
Mike Greenwell didn't get voted off the NASCAR Truck circuit, and didn't really do all that badly in his first start at this level. Started 20th, finished 26th, last car on the lead lap. All this despite a pit road penalty and a no-contact spin during the race. I believe that he's under contract for 2 more starts at this level this year.
BTW: If you can watch a replay of the last 4 laps of this year's Indy 500 and NOT get excited, then check your pulse. My wife was asking why I was yelling at the TV.
Goz, wgoesle of
((I suppose, I've never been that much of a racing fan. Cheering on a motor, even one driven by a highly skilled driver, has some elements of ironic quizzicalness in it. For all that, I was totally into JUST the Indy 500 at one time, in the A.J. Foyt/Bobby Unser years, and I did study the history of it as a kid. Rodger Ward, now THERE was a driver..... I don't get any of that sense of excitement any more, but it might be me.))

Warren Goesle (Fri, 9 Jun 2006 08:54:17 -0500)
Is picking Brazil to win the World Cup akin to picking the Yankees to win the WS, or Duke to win men's college basketball?
Goz, wgoesle of

Rick Desper (Fri, 9 Jun 2006 07:32:31 -0700 (PDT))
It's not akin to picking the Yankees because the Yankees are evil incarnate, and Brazil is a (relatively) poor, fun-loving nation whose inhabitants just happen to be great at soccer. Picking Duke to win in the NCAAs is just silly. They've never been as dominant as the Yankees and are known more for being overrated than for actually winning the tournament. Duke's really only won the tournament three times, which is only once more than UConn. Or Louisville. Brazil is far more dominant than Duke has ever been.
Rick, rick_desper of
((I'm 100% with Rick, even though I'm not really following the World Cup very closely either. Also, Soccer is a different kind of sport. When you're dominating a Soccer game, you're "controlling a ball" with foot/head/teamwork coordination. You're not scoring up the wazoo.... like you do in Basketball. And you're not sedately challenging pitchers..... like you do in Baseball. I know that wasn't the analogy you were trying to draw, but it doesn't really make much sense on any level.))

Warren Goesle (Fri, 9 Jun 2006 12:28:41 -0500)
Not quite the concept. At the beginning of the MLB or NCAAB year you can count on the Yankees or Dukies to be *in* the playoffs. Same really with Brazil. If they don't get out of their group, governments will be overthrown. You *know* that they'll be there. Will they win it? Not necessarily. But in picking them I believe I have a better than 1-in-32 chance of being right.
Goz, wgoesle of
((Oh, I see.... well, I suppose. I'm not thinking about betting on games since I don't do it. As you continually remind me, this is one of my most rational decisions. I think in that sense, you are more or less correct in your analogy.))

Gary Coughlan (Apr 5, 2006 3:12 PM)
Hi Jim, I'm going to send you a copy of this email that I sent you last month after TAP #300 came out with the pictures. It bounced back to me and, in recalling, it seems that several other emails I've sent you get bounced back so I'm switching the email address I have for you to the "backup" one you have at gmail that you listed in TAP #301 which just arrived yesterday. Til later... Gary
Hi Jim, What a nice, and shocking, surprise! I just got the latest TAP and saw myself from 22 to 24 years ago (I think it was actually 1983 or 1984), like Doug thought because it was after my 1983 trip to Europe). I think we all still picture hobby members as we knew them, so you're not alone there. Even then, I had mental images of hobby members that still didn't change even after I had met them. Thanks to you and Doug for a wonderful look back at some happy times....
Gary, gcoughlan of
((Great, thanks, Gary, that's the way I picture you still, just the way you looked then. Let's keep up a few more notes from people commenting on the pics and other items. John is a bit two-fingered typer challenged, but I decided to leave it as he sent it, edited slightly.))

John Caruso (Sun, 09 Apr 2006 15:32:35)
i am fine. so how r u doing? i read most of what u send, minus the game reports. i enjoyed the pics-but knew that wasnt eric ozog. just too lazy to write in. funny how all those 1982 sacramento pics r there yet mine and kathys trip to sacramento didnt get in with them. i know they probably had more than 1 con dafcon-or maybe that was major gaming con pics. ((Maybe Steve or Don Williams or someone else who was there can weigh in, but my memory (as someone who never did make it to a Dafcon) was that there were at least three.)) but kathy and i did visit the langleys in summer of 1982, and they threw a con for us. we got to meet a whole bunch of west coasters. even the guy in that pic-whose name i cant remember. ((Ah, well, that's getting us closer, if I can actually get Steve Langley to LOOK at the picture, he probably can tell us. I'll try in mailing this issue. You know Steve, when he's focused on something he's focused on it, when he's not he's not.)) does anyone throw house cons anymore? ((Oh, absolutely! They don't quite have the cachet that the early-mid 1980's housecons had, but I've been to a few in recent years. They tend to be smaller, except for Bruce Linsey's things which really aren't Diplomacy cons. Bruce is throwing the largest housecons that I know about right now.)) i keep busy playing yahoo fantasy baseball. eric voogd has a league. well i am alive (barely) and breathing. good to write to u.
john, commishjohn of
((I want to get into that league with you guys next year, I'm printing that in case anyone else from TAP wants to join in too. Thanks, John, I really miss our phone conversations when the baseball league was going on. It still, in my view, was the best baseball league ever. I suppose there's no chance we can complete those last playoffs that you left hanging is there.... just kidding... mostly.))

Bruce Linsey (Tue, 28 Mar 2006 17:55:16 EST)
Personal Notes to GM: I knew that picture wasn't of Eric Ozog, but don't know who it is. Also, Paul Gardner is alive and well and living with his family in Brattleboro. He plays in my baseball and football leagues, and comes to many of our cons. He was last here about three weeks ago, along with your brother Dave and some other people, for a game of Advanced Civilization. Let me know if you need his contact into.
Bruce, GonzoHQ of
((Thanks! See below.... Ah, good to hear, yeah, could I have Paul Gardner's postal address, I'd like to send him some free TAP's (including #300).))

Mike Barno (Wed, 22 Mar 2006 18:38:35 -0500)
... Paul Gardner, you ask? (First thing I've noticed in today's issue 301.)
I've seen Paul about once a year lately; he makes it to some of Bruce's housecons. I don't have his e-mail address right now, but Bruce does. Paul is working for himself as a housepainter and plasterer; Google for "Hawk & Brush" and you'll find a Brattleboro address and a phone number.
I still enjoy thinking of the two cons I attended at his family's Newfane home, and playtesting your Spy Dip variant among other adventures.
- Mike, mpbarno of

Bruce Linsey (Tue, 28 Mar 2006 18:38:42 EST)
Paul Gardner, 139 Chestnut Streeet, Brattleboro, VT 05301. E-mail, if you want it, is pgardner of

Fred C. Davis (March 6, 2006)
Dear Jim: Just wanted to say congratulations on the production of your 300th issue of TAP. You are now in 6th place on the All-Time list of North American zine publications, per Meinel's Encyclopedia of Dip Zines if the figures on Page 62 are correct. ((It's on page 67 or 49 in my edition, depending on whether you use the internal page count or the PDF page count, but in any case, to my knowledge you count correctly. Boast ended very soon after this at the count of near 335. Dippy went along further, into third place I believe, but ended short of 400 (I have that in my records someplace). No one will ever catch Boardman, but I expect to get into second place before I'm done with this (Runestone is in second place at 375). I see 400 as very doable, in six to eight years.)) BTW, you knocked Bushwacker out of 6th place on that list. I produced only 234 regular issues, ending in August 1991. ((Andy Lischett, with Cheesecake, also has since passed you.))
I am assuming that you will publish the other "leftover" material in yout next issue. This would include the material which I sent to you, which was originally going to go into Issue #300. Please advise me if I'm wrong. ((You're not wrong, let me stick it this issue with the subszines, just below.... after a few more letters. I was going to retype/scribe it in, but I think in the interests of time, and given how well you've paged it, I'm just going to reprint from your typing. If people clamor for your Heroes/Villains list or other items, we can print those too. A few comments on the AFI/Fred Davis discrepancies. I agree with you and others about Lawrence of Arabia, it doesn't play that well now if you actually watch it, on the other hand, The Wizard of Oz never loses its magic and I'm not sure why you downrated that one so far - still high to be sure. On the ones that AFI missed that you added, I agree completely about Rebecca and Miracle on 34th Street; I'm less sure about Mrs. Miniver, Mr. Chips, and Mr. Roberts - something of a theme there, somehow. And I just don't think On Golden Pond is THAT good as a movie. Inherit the Wind is a good pickup on your part, that stands out to me on Page 2. Finally, for top 10, I'd put back in Dr. Strangelove (not in anyone's top 10 here, but definitely in mine) and Wizard of Oz for sure. Since I'd take Schindler's List, Godfather Part I, and Some Like it Hot OUT of the my top 10, the rest of your top 10 and generally the order being my picks as well, I'd still have to put in another movie. If I were to pick out of nowhere, Start the Revolution Without Me is my favorite screwball historical comedy of all time. Plus, some friends of mine and I are convinced that the first reel of Woody Allen's Take the Money and Run is the most perfectly directed sequence of film ever produced. I stand on that particular opinion.))
We still don't have an Internet address. ((It seems that changed recently, but I can't put my fingers on the update just this second.)) Our old computer died, and it will be another few weeks before we can buy a new one. So, you can reach us only by phone and regular mail. We just got a new long-distance phone service which is even cheaper than the one we had before.
Thank you for including the color photos of several of we diplomats from the 1970s and 1980s. How we have changed since these "baby pictures" were taken! The obituary by Larry Peery on John Beshara was also very well done. While I did not like Beshara, he did play an important part in the early days of the Postal hobby. A lot of we Old-Timers are nearing the end of the line. I only hope that similar obituaries can be written for the rest of us when we shuffle off this mortal coil. ((If I were you, I would be lobbying Conrad von Metzke to write yours, not to say we want to be like the New York Times and have them written in advance, but Conrad would do the best job, I think.))
My only criticism of Issue #300 is that I thought too much space was devoted to music. I know you are very much into the music scene, but not all of your readers are into that subject. ((One of the things you can do in a landmark issue, is, well, put politely turn your readers round and round and do what you want. I have no regrets except for this delay and how behind I am right now.)) I skipped several pages of your music reviews, as I know nothing about most of the bands/songs reported on there. My musical interests are still mostly stored in the 1950s and 60s, when I was in the Army, when I was courting and a newlywed, and when I spent 5 weeks in a VA Hospital in 1955 with eye trouble, and had access to several popular radio stations. Inge and I were married in 1957, so, of course, music from that era is still very much in my memory. It was all nice, gentle, romantic music then. ((Yes, that's just my parents' generation, they were married one year before you, and I was born in 1957. I can see why "Love Will Tear Us Apart" doesn't resonate with you. Every generation feels that way to some degree. The number of newer songs that I really like is much diminished over songs from the same life changes period for me. That's pretty much true for most people, I think. No biggie, but it's my szine, and the way the model works is that I print what I like.))
I just hope my eye condition and Parkinson's doesn't grow any worse, and keep me from being semi-active in the Dip hobby. I'll let you know more about my medical problems later.
Best regards, Fred, 3210-K Wheaton Way, Ellicott City, MD 21043
((Thanks, Fred, I hope you and Inge are doing better/well these days. Thanks for your letters.))

Ian Moore (Mon, 5 Jun 2006 20:30:18)
Hi Jim!
((Yes, please let me know your current address.))
OK, my address is: 82 Heytesbury Street, Dublin 8, Ireland.
((Did you see the big 300th issue a few months back??? I think I still sent it to the old address.))
I'm afraid I missed it. It's, er, a while since I moved.
((And also let me know your blog URL, I find it amazing that the Frank's APA continues, it does seem that the APA format is even more difficult to maintain than the szine format.))
The blog URL is: . I agree with you about the APA format. Its big problem is that it is so hard to explain to people. At least with zines you can just say "I write it, send it to you, and you read it".
((As far as sending me money, I still use John Harrington to collect money in GBP is that is easier than dollars. I've avoided joining PayPal still. But if you tell me your blog URL, I'm happy to continue to send issues.))
I would be amazed if blogging was now paying for itself in zines. Dude. I'm not on paypal either. This caused some friction when I was last central mailer of Frank's APA, as some people found it very hard to pay monies any other way - emblematic of our times.
Were you at anything in the Terrastock festival? A couple of the Frank's APA people were in Providence for it recently.
later, ian, ianjmoore of
((I thought about it, but I'd just seen Erin McKeown, who was the person at the festival that I most wanted to see. Is that who has your Frank's APA people swooning? While I still adore Erin, she's not being quite as innovative recently. Her first recordings and first concerts were some of the strongest debuts I've ever experienced.))

Mark D Lew (Fri, 12 May 2006 22:43:46 -0700)
For a prettier version of this message, click this link: mark-and-ericka/announce.htm
Although we’re sad that we aren’t able to invite all of our friends to be with us at the wedding, we are happy to announce that we
will be married on Sunday, May 28, 2006, in Seattle, Washington.
Mark, markdlew of
((Congratulations, Mark!!!))
"So I called up George and he called up Jim, I said let's make a deal.
He said he'd talk to him. Gonna start a church where you can save yourself,
You can make some noise, When you've got no choice...
You told me useful things, what people think of me, I guess I should thank you.
It's true, then I agree... I'm all alone, I've got no choice,
I'm all alone, I've got no choice."
From "Got No Choice" by the incomparable Mark Cutler, from the CD Mark Cutler and Useful Things.
If you want to submit orders, press, or letters by E-Mail, you can find me through the Internet system at "burgess of". If anyone has an interest in having an E-Mail address listed so people can negotiate with you by computer, just let me know. FAX orders to (401) 277-9904 if you let me know in advance to be sure the fax machine is set up.
I am continuing to note cut or failed support orders with a small "s" instead of a capital "S". This will make it easier on the E-Mailed version of the szine to see what happened, since the italics don't show there. The italics DO show on the web page just fine.
Standby lists:
Mike Barno, Dick Martin, Brad Wilson, Jack McHugh, Glenn Petroski, Steve Emmert, Mark Kinney, Vince Lutterbie, Eric Brosius, Paul Rauterberg, Bob Osuch, Doug Kent, Sean O'Donnell, Vern Parker, Heath Gardner, Paul Kenny, and Jeff O'Donnell stand by for regular Diplomacy.
Let me know if you want on or off these lists, especially OFF. Standbies get the szine for free and receive my personal thanks.

We've got lots of openings in the subszines, check them out!!! Especially, contact Rip Gooch for Railway Rivals, see Rip's subszine elsewhere in most issues of TAP. Contact Rip Gooch directly at xyropedes of and try to entice him to return. Rip has been a bit missing in action lately, but I am assured that he SHALL return.
I'm ready to start a new Breaking Away game, who's interested??? Challenge David Partridge again as he is in, so are Brendan Whyte and Alexander Woo. I also am giving a free spot to Eric Martin. Anyone else? Rick Desper is in too. That leaves us looking for ONE more spot, can I convince someone to take that now???
I am willing to open another new game of REGULAR Diplomacy if there is enough interest!!! We have Marc Ellinger (pd), Drew James (pd),Don Williams, and John Crow signed up, only three more to go!!! Wait, we also have Fred Wiedemeyer in, only two more to go.
Also, is there any interest in another game of Nuclear Yuppie Evil Empire 7x7 Dip? I know it may be getting tired, but I really like it. We have Karl Schmit and Sean O'Donnell on the list, let's get seven!! It's FREE!!!
I also am starting a game of the variant I designed, Spy Diplomacy. Signups for that are now open. I'll publish the rules shortly or you can look at them at Bruce Edwards and Eric Ozog are signed up. I'll try to remember to punch in the rules in the next issue.
John Harrington is offering to guest GM a game of Office Politics. Any interest in that?? Let me or John know! Jody McCullough and Bruce Edwards are interested, anyone else?
And since Colonia is over, Harold Reynolds is looking to start something else.
Also, I am going to design some postal rules for Devil Take the Hindmost, and we have an opening here: Bruce Edwards, Mike Barno, and Eoghan Barry are signed up. Postal rules from me will be forthcoming shortly, on my never ending to-do list. I will get them in SOON! I'm more likely to get these things started if I see some interest..... I've GOT to do this now, Eoghan is getting tired of waiting....
Right now, the other thing going is the Modern Diplomacy game with Wings. Sean O'Donnell, Jeff O'Donnell, Bob Holt, Rick Desper, Alexander Woo, and Dave Partridge are signed up for that. I will start it when I get a full complement of players, we only need FOUR more!

Last chance is gone here, these games never really got going all that far in the first place. And I really couldn't get back more than one player in each game and it seemed silly to get that many standbys. Take note Mr. BNC Tom Howell. Let's start another new Diplomacy game instead. Who's interested?? Any of you old Ishkibibbleites want to play?? Or should I just drop the free subs I've been giving you all?? Your choice. Anyone who was a subber to Ishkibibble may join the new regular Diplomacy game for free, but this is a ONE TIME only offer, get your request in now. Marc Ellinger already has taken us up on this request. I want three more to fill that game..... come on, let me call by name who qualifies for this deal..... Karl Schmit, John Power, Tim Snyder, Fred Wiedemeyer, Dave Partridge, Graham Wilson, and Kevin Wilson. Wait, no, Fred already asked in, see above..... I also will let it apply to the Modern Diplomacy game I'm trying to start if you'd rather play in that!!!

SPIRALS OF PARANOIA: 2005A, Regular Diplomacy
Fall 1903
AUSTRIA (Rauterberg): a VIE-tyo, a SER S a rum, a RUM h, a BUL S f aeg-gre, a bud-TRI, f aeg-GRE.
ENGLAND (Wiedemeyer): f LVP-iri, a WAL-lvp, a swe h (d r:nwy,fin,otb), f ENG-iri, f NWG-nat.
FRANCE (Tretick): f MID-eng, f NAT s a cly-lvp, a CLY-lvp, f IRI-wal, a GAS h.
GERMANY (Ozog for Tallman): a SIL-boh, a TYO-boh, f gob-SWE, a MAR h,
a bre-PIC, f DEN S f gob-swe.
ITALY (O'Donnell): f tyh-TUS, a pie-VEN, a gre-APU, a naf-TUN, f ION C a gre-apu.
RUSSIA (Sundstrom): a GAL-war, a SEV h, a UKR-war, a lvn-STP.
TURKEY (Biehl): f con-AEG, f ank-CON, f SMY S f con-aeg.

Supply Center Chart
AUSTRIA (Rauterberg): TRI,VIE,BUD,ser,bul,rum,gre (has 6, bld 1)
ENGLAND (Wiedemeyer): EDI,LVP,LON,nwy (has 4 or 5, even(r:otb) or rem 1)
FRANCE (Tretick): PAR,BRE,spa,por (has 5, rem 1)
GERMANY (Ozog/Tallman): KIE,BER,MUN,hol,den,bel,swe, (has 6, bld 2)
ITALY (O'Donnell): ROM,NAP,VEN,tun (has 5, rem 1)
RUSSIA (Sundstrom): WAR,STP,SEV,MOS (has 4, even)
TURKEY (Biehl): ANK,SMY,CON (has 3, even)
Neutral: none (Total=34)

Addresses of the Participants
AUSTRIA: Paul Rauterberg, 3116 W. American Dr., Greenfield, WI 53221,
(414) 281-2339 (E-Mail) trauterberg of
ENGLAND: Fred Wiedemeyer, Box 92010-Meadowbrook RPO, Edmonton, ALBERTA CANADA T6T 1N1,
(780) 465-6432, wiedem of
FRANCE: Buddy Tretick, 5023 Sewell's Pointe Way, Fredericksburg, VA 22407, (540) 898-3386
cell (540) 226-5571 (E-Mail) berniebuddy32 of
GERMANY: Terry Tallman, PO Box 782, Clinton, WA 98236, (360) 331-5698 ($2)
terryt of
GERMANY: Temporary Standby is Eric Ozog, PO Box 1138, Granite Falls, WA 98252-1138,
(360) 691-4264, ElfEric of
ITALY: Jeff O'Donnell, 402 Middle Ave., Elyria, OH 44035-5728,
(440) 322-2920 or (440) 225-9203 (cell, as late as midnight Eastern)
RUSSIA: Matt Sundstrom, 1760 Robincrest Lane South, Glenview, IL 60025, (847) 729-1882,
Matt.Sundstrom of or mattandzoe of
TURKEY: John Biehl, #8 - 11530 84th Avenue, Delta, BRITISH COLUMBIA, V4C 2M1 CANADA,
(604) 591-1832(???) ($7); jrb of

Game Notes:
1) Terry is still having some medical problems, but rather than hold up the game anymore, Eric Ozog has agreed to pay attention to the game and negotiate and submit orders for Terry. We all hope this will be a brief interlude. Eric originally brought Terry into the Diplomacy hobby all those many years ago, and so I'm glad he's agreed to do this.
2) Note that Buddy has finally completed his change of address, with the slow but steady tortoise move of the US Postal Service. I have Fall orders in hand from all but one of you, so other than that person, you just need to let me know if you're changing your orders. Sorry for the delay!!

(BUD-MOS): WHO did you say was playing defense?
(PIKE'S LOG SUPPLEMENTAL): The Children of Tomari have sent a distress signal to the Starship W Bush. The transmission was broken and incomplete "... innocent children ... bad Breen ... perplexed .... ouch, that hurt .... naughty Martians! .... please save us .... zzzzz (crackle, pop) zzzz [silence]"
(CONSTANTINOPLE (OCT 31, 1903)): Sultan Hatas I reclined on his divan and drew on his hookah, "Ah, praise Allah, the new dreadnoughts we ordered from the English shipyards managed to slip through the Italian waters and have arrived here safely. May our realm now be safe from the hostile infidels. Peace be upon us."

FLIP FLOP: 2003G, Regular Diplomacy
Spring 1907
AUSTRIA (Wiedemeyer): f tri-ADR, a BUD-rum, a RUM-sev, a NAP S a rom,
a ROM S a nap, a UKR S a rum-sev, a MOS S a rum-sev, a alb-TRI.
ENGLAND (Schmit): a lon-BEL, a HOL S a bur-ruh, f ENG S f nth, f POR-mid, a bur-RUH,
f bre s f por-mid (d r:pic,otb), f nwy s f nth (d r:bar,nwg,otb), f NTH C a lon-bel,
a STP s f nwy.
FRANCE (Jeff O'Donnell): a par-BRE, f SPA(SC)-mid, a GAS S a par-bre.
GERMANY (Sundstrom): f HEL-nth, f SWE S f ska-nwy, a DEN-kie, a LVN-stp,
a MUN-kie, f ska-NWY.
TURKEY (Levinson): a BUL S a sev-rum, f ION S a gre-alb, f tyh-TUS, a gre-ALB,
f tun-TYH, f BLA S a sev-rum, a SEV-rum, a SER S a gre-alb.

Addresses of the Participants
AUSTRIA: Fred Wiedemeyer, Box 92010-Meadowbrook RPO, Edmonton, ALBERTA CANADA T6T 1N1,
(780) 465-6432, wiedem of
ENGLAND: Karl Schmit, 1509 O'Keefe Road, DePere, WI 54115, (920) 338-8402,
diplomacy of ($4)
FRANCE: Jeff O'Donnell, 402 Middle Ave., Elyria, OH 44035-5728,
(440) 322-2920 or (440) 225-9203 (cell, as late as midnight Eastern)
GERMANY: Matt Sundstrom, 1760 Robincrest Lane South, Glenview, IL 60025, (847) 729-1882,
Matt.Sundstrom of or mattandzoe of
ITALY: Don Williams, 27505 Artine Drive, Saugus, CA 91350, (661) 297-3947,
wllmsfmly of or dwilliams of
RUSSIA: Sean O'Donnell, 1044 Wellfleet Drive, Grafton, OH 44044, (440) 926-0230,
sean_o_donnell of
TURKEY: Alexandre Levinson, 1, allee des Marniquets, 78430 Louveciennes FRANCE, don't need phone,
levinson7 of ($5)

Game Notes:


I CAN'T FIND MY MONEY!: 2001F, Regular Diplomacy
Winter 1912
AUSTRIA (Parker): bld f tri; has f TRI, f ION, f TYH, a GAL, a WAR, f EAS,
a PIE, a BUL, a VIE, a VEN, a SEV, a SMY, a SER, a STP, f AEG.
FRANCE (Kent): R a spa-POR; rem a wal; has f BRE, a PAR, a POR, f ENG, f TUN.
GERMANY (Wilson): bld a kie; has a KIE, f NTH, f PIC, a MUN, f CLY, a SPA,
f MID, a LON, a NWY, a MAR, f NAO, a BUR.
TURKEY (Miller): R f smy otb; has a ARM, a CON.

Addresses of the Participants
AUSTRIA: Vern Parker, 337 Winter Hill Place, Powell, OH 43065, (614) 402-5139
VernDip of is preferred
ENGLAND: Mark Kinney, 4830 Westport Road, Apt D, Louisville KY 40222
alberich of
FRANCE: Doug Kent, 800 West Wintergreen, Hutchins, TX 75141
dougray30 of
GERMANY: Kevin Wilson, 18623 Santa Maria Drive, Baton Rouge, LA 70809, 225-751-3857,
ckevinw1 of
ITALY: Formerly was Heath Gardner, 1510 W. Friendly Ave., Greensboro, NC 27403-1207
metaphorman of
ITALY: Mike Barno, 634 Dawson Hill Road, Spencer, NY 14883
mpbarno of
RUSSIA: Rick Desper,
rick_desper of
TURKEY: Tim Miller, 258 New Mark Esplanade, Rockville, MD 20850,
tim of
GM: Jim-Bob Burgess, 664 Smith Street, Providence, RI 02908-4327, +1 401-351-0287
burgess of

Game Notes:
1) The GA-GA Anschluss draw proposal is rejected again. I didn't see it get reproposed.
2) Note Doug Kent's change of postal address.


SECRETS: 1999D, Regular Diplomacy
Winter 1920
ENGLAND (Kent): has f WAL, a GAS, f NAO, a KIE, f MID, f ENG, f HOL, f POR.
FRANCE (Sasseville): rem a ruh; has f MAR, f SPA(SC), a BUR.
GERMANY (Barno): has a CON.
RUSSIA (Parker): bld f stp(nc); has f STP(NC), a WAR, a NWY, a BER, f DEN, a SWE, a PRU.
TURKEY (Linsey): bld a ank, f smy; has a ANK, f SMY, a SEV, a GAL, a SIL, f WES, a UKR,
f GOL, a MUN, a VIE, f NAF, f AEG, a TYO, f PIE, a BOH.

Addresses of the Participants
ENGLAND: Doug Kent, 800 West Wintergreen, Hutchins, TX 75141
dougray30 of
FRANCE: Roland Sasseville, Jr., 38 Bucklin Street, Pawtucket, RI 02861, (401) 481-4280 ($0)
roland6 of and ICQ: 40565030
GERMANY: Mike Barno, 634 Dawson Hill Road, Spencer, NY 14883, (607) 589-4906
mpbarno of
RUSSIA: Vern Parker, 337 Winter Hill Place, Powell, OH 43065, (614) 402-5139
VernDip of is preferred
TURKEY: Bruce Linsey, PO Box 234, Kinderhook, NY 12106
GonzoHQ of

Game Notes:
1) The FREGT draw is rejected, there are no new proposals. We're off the draw clock, as seems clear at this point.
2) I mistyped the French orders last time. It didn't matter, but A Burgundy did try to support A Ruhr to Munich, and did not try to support itself to Munich.
3) Note Doug Kent's change of postal address.


FINDING THE COMMUNITY: Breaking Away, Designer's Rules

Game Notes:
1) The rules are on the TAP website in the Tinamou section. Ask if you have any questions. New game start in this, who wants to play again (or for the first time)??? We have five signed up so far, see the list in the game opening section. I want to start this up soon, so sign up!!! Can I twist arms on just ONE more of you to join???


Personal Note to You:

File translated from TEX by TTH, version 3.30.
On 20 Jun 2006, 20:53.