– Not sure about you, but the pennant races this year seem rather scintillating. Not only does it appear as if the Red Sox and Yankees may have to decide the American League East during their meeting on the last weekend of the season, but what’s going on in the AL Central is probably even more breathtaking. The Cleveland Indians, who weren’t supposed to contend until next year, are suddenly young and unbeatable, while the White Sox, who lead the division by as much as 15 games (!!!) in August, are now huffing and puffing to cross the finish line – the Indians have made up 13 games and now only trail by 2.5! The AL West finds the A’s and Angels in a back-and-forth tilt, too. While the NL is a little more stable, Barry Bonds return to the San Francisco lineup recently has got to be making the San Diego Padres sweat. The Padres are already contending for the title of “worst baseball playoff team of all time.” No matter what happens, if you love baseball, this is heaven.

– The new Aimee Mann album, The Forgotten Arm, is still really doing it for me. To think that I had written her off since the late 1980s. This is a concept album about an heroin-addicted boxer returning from duty in the Vietnam War and the experience of the woman who loves him. It’s really impressive work.

– There’s a legendary moment in the film The Graduate where Mr. McGuire stresses to Ben, “There’s a great future in plastics. Think about it. Will you think about it?” It’s becoming obvious that the early millenium’s “plastics” is going to be renewable energy. You’re seeing this rise – in visibility, in the press and in the stock prices of related companies. You’re seeing it everywhere, it seems, and it’s not just the companies who manufacture the hardware. Think about that.

– I see that the White Sox Joe Crede has just homered in the bottom of the 10th to beat the Indians. The White Sox now lead by 3.5 games.

– Speaking of baseball, tonight the Colorado Rockies experienced their season’s high point, a 20-1 victory over the San Diego Padres (see? worst playoff team ever!). Most notable: an 8 RBI night for Matt Holliday and a pitching appearance by San Diego third baseman Sean Burroughs, whose “fastball” topped out at a whizzing 75 MPH. He gave up four runs in one inning of work. I love when position players pitch. That leads me to wonder: who is the best alltime position player to pitch in the modern era? I’ll have to do some digging.

– Who is the person who Googles “rustedrobot” every morning? Please identify yourself (email link up to the left). I have some questions for you. Seriously.