Wednesday, January 13, 2010

And I’d like Science doping analogies for $1000, Alex.

Once again, shamelessly leeching off DrugMonkey’s brainwaves….

Science doping confessions I’m afraid we’ll be hearing:

Yeah, I fudged stuff. I withheld some data that was relevant, that kinda disproved my hypothesis to begin with. So it a got a coupla papers published, but there was nothing false in any of them. I mean not a thing was technically untrue. OK, so I more than fudged stuff --- maybe a coupla times I kinda made up stuff. What? Fabricated data? Noooo, that sounds so harsh, dude. Just, you know, kinda extended the results beyond the limits---to, in my mind, the logical conclusion that people were too dumb to see yet. But hey, I never did it in a paper, OK? Or even a conference. Just in some grant apps, y’know. Just to tide me over---it looked like some grants may not be renewed so I just got a little help to get back on the field, man. I mean, there were people counting on me---students, postdocs, techs, admins…..the pressure was tremendous….the responsibility I felt was enormous. Besides, these grant apps were reduced to like 12 pages, so it all basically came down to my resume. It wasn’t like there was even room to provide prelim results to give the reviewers a proper eval of the data even if we had them. It was my word against some rookie’s, and I KNEW in my heart we were correct so does that really count as cheating? And you know the fans loved me. So all I had to do was provide enough stuff for them to continue to like me. I mean, the system was set up for me to be a star, man…..who was I to go screw that up? I mean, I'm not that arrogant….just a guy who’s doing his bit for the greater good, y’know? That’s all, man. I just did it to stay in the game, to get the grants. I never faked it in the papers, man, never. Because I’m pretty sure the stuff I made up was true anyway. I mean, I didn’t really need the fabrication --- just saved some time and got me back in the game y’know. Just couldn’t afford to have funding gaps there, guys. Too many people depending on me. Way too much pressure.

So in summary, I’m really sorry for my transgressions but I hope that you will agree it wasn’t really pertinent to my overall body of work. This has nothing to do with my upcoming candidacy for the NAS or the Lasker or even the Nobel prize. I just feel bad having kept my family in the dark about this minor misdemeanor I had in the grant app process (which was, ultimately, for the greater good, in my opinion, because of my opinion of the importance of my contribution---just so you don’t lose sight of all that) and I thought it was time I came clean. I think it is important for aspiring scientists to know that fraud doesn’t pay. I’ll be happy to reply to all comments from Stockholm.

Update: I can’t understand why my confession has generated such a kerfuffle and fuss. I mean, people are bandying about my name with ‘fabrication’ and stuff and it was never like that. We just enhanced our results a bit for the grant apps, made sort of a ‘proposal enhancement data’ (PED) set if you will---think of it as supplements, man. But the PED don’t run gels or generate spectra or clamp any freaking patches (haha they certainly don’t do any real work---c’mon that’s funny in layers, admit it!) or write any grants or navigate (or help you deal with the Pure Edge crap back in the day) for you, you know? You still need the hand-eye coordination and God-given talent to do that. And why pick on me? People have been using all kinds of ‘supplements’ for ages. I mean, I know for a fact that many a grant proposal or paper has been written under the influence of mfing Jameson, or a hot cup of sake, or maybe even a toke of the hippy lettuce. What of those performance enhancers? I mean, is it OK if your grants and papers were sativa-ed as long as the source was Oryza or Cannabis? I was just part of the era of strangulation of funding (I mean, it’s a doc eat doc world out there and I was wearing R21 underwear) and I did what I needed to, to keep myself and my team in the game.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

'Roid confession I'd like to hear

Picking up from Bikemonkey's most excellent rant...

Here's the 'roid confession I'd like to hear one of these days:

Yeah, I did steroids and HGH. I'm not proud of it, but I did it.

And it pisses me off that all of you people are getting all freaking high and mighty over me because of this. The hell with you all. The writers knew something was going on. The managers knew something was going on. The owners knew something was going on. The fans knew something was going on. What....a record stands for 40 years without anyone getting close to it and suddenly it gets broken 5 times in 3 years, and you all seriously thought it was because of better fucking Ovaltine? Players who could barely hit 50 HRs per season suddenly started increasing their output by 30 or 40% and it was all hunky dory? And oh, coincidentally, players were getting freakishly bigger and looking like they were cut out of granite---you thought that was because of better colon cleanse and vitamins? Fuck off, you sanctimonious bastards. The fans loved the entertainment, the owners loved the profits, and suddenly I'm the numero uno bad guy? Are you fucking kidding me?

I did it because, frankly, pretty much everyone did something or the other. I belong to a sport that invented and lives by the credo, "If you're aren't cheating, you aren't trying". I started looking around one day and realized that I could either do something to keep up or risk losing my multi-million dollar job. Yeah, I know there was theoretically a third option---to blow the whistle. Sure--and then I'd be obliterated by the system, be the poster boy for pariahs in this nation and be left at a point where I wouldn't be employable even as assistant crack-whore. Why sure, where do I sign up for that? We live in a country where pretty much everyone with half a functioning brain knew that the entire basis for the Iraq war was bullshit, yet no one stopped it and years and trillions of dollars later we're still in it. If human history has taught us one thing it is that when cabals of rich, powerful fuckers want something they usually end up getting it, and if you try to stop them you usually get destroyed. In this case, there was too much money at stake for anyone involved in the business to do anything meaningful about cheating. That's just the way it was. Everyone talks about the players profiting from it---but everyone, including the millionaire superstar 'journalists' who cover the sport, had something to gain, financially and otherwise. And the fans, ever looking for the next high, couldn't care less---they were intoxicated with the entertainment. Attendance, TV revenues, sponsorships, endorsements, all went through the roof.

So yeah, I'm not proud of what I did. But quit sitting there and moralizing on me. I'm just a product of this wonderfully putrid system folks. Besides, WERE YOU NOT ENTERTAINED?
And as for the sanctity of records, may I remind you that many of these damn records were set when colored folk weren't even allowed to play in the major leagues. So yeah, so much for your fucking sanctity and your damn asterisks.

I did what I needed to do, in the age that I played in. So if you think I belong in the Hall of Fame, great. I'll be happy to oblige and keep the circus going to everyone's profit. But of you decide to not let me in the HOF, I ain't losing any sleep either. In the information age, you can't threaten me with historical obsolescence, folks. In the YouTube and Twitter age, you think I give a crap about having a plaque in some shithole in NY? Every time people Google "XYZ baseball record" they come up with my name whether you bunch of gasbag writer voters like it or not. There was a time when election into the HOF would've meant an almost essential financial lifeline well into retirement. Not so much anymore, folks---the eight figures (before the decimal point) in my various bank accounts make for a pretty damn comfortable retirement, thank you very much.

I am sorry it had to be like that. But there's not a lot I could've changed, and not many of you in my place would have done differently either. Quit moralizing and get the hell over it.
Buh-bye now.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

NFL Playoff Musings Part 1 – Free advice for Andy Reid and the Eagles

Here are some relevant stats from the Eagles games this season. All stats obtained from the links from this page at

Let’s start with the WINS:

Week 1 vs Carolina : 29 Pass Attempts, 32 Rush Attempts

Week 3 vs Kansas City : 36 Pass Attempts, 27 Rush Attempts

Week 5 vs Tampa : 24 Pass Attempts, 21 Rush Attempts

Week 7 vs Washington : 26 Pass Attempts, 27 Rush Attempts

Week 8 vs NY Giants : 23 Pass Attempts, 24 Rush Attempts

Week 11 vs Chicago : 33 Pass Attempts, 30 Rush Attempts

Week 12 vs Washington : 36 Pass Attempts, 29 Rush Attempts

Week 13 vs Atlanta : 27 Pass Attempts, 26 Rush Attempts

Week 14 vs NY Giants : 28 Pass Attempts, 24 Rush Attempts

Week 15 vs San Fran : 36 Pass Attempts, 33 Rush Attempts

Week 16 vs Denver : 35 Pass Attempts, 28 Rush Attempts

Aaaaand here’re the LOSSES:

Week 2 vs New Orleans : 52 Pass Attempts, 22 Rush Attempts

Week 6 vs Oakland : 46 pass Attempts, 14 Rush Attempts

Week 9 vs Dallas : 30 Passs Attempts, 24 Rush Attempts

Week 10 vs San Diego : 56 Pass Attempts, 13 Rush Attempts

Week 17 vs Dallas : 36 Pass Attempts, 10 Rush Attempts

It was this last game that prompted me to look up these stats. I saw about 3 qtrs of that game and I was disgusted. The Eagles had a lot to gain by winning this game---the NFC East title, a bye week and a home playoff game against, most likely, Arizona---a team that would find it difficult to play in Philly in Jan. And in the first half, Philly ran the ball 5 times. And everyone was mystified as to why they were teeing off on McNabb successfully. 10 freaking rush attempts in a game? Every now and then Reid just freaking loses his mind.

Anyway, I have been over this before, after Philly’s playoff exit last year.

1) Run the damn ball

2) Don’t give up on the running game; it helps your defense too, y’know.

3) Most of the time, if your Pass : Run ratio exceeds, say 1.4 : 1, say hello to another loss

4) Most of the time, nothing good happens when you chuck the ball over 40 times a game.

Then again, what do I know? It’s not like I’m an ‘offensive genius’ like Gruden or Shanahan or the many analysts on the ESPN/CBS/FOX/NBC payrolls (aptly titled, I think, as I find their ‘genius’ to be largely offensive).