The Hanging Shad’s ‘Apropos of Nothing’

In between Christmas shopping—ok, thinking about it anyway—and decompressing from the fabulous Republican presidential primary debate, it’s The Hanging Shad’s “Apropos of Nothing”:

1. Boston’s MBTA mass transit system is reeling from the news that it will take billions of dollars just to bring it up to acceptable levels. It’s pretty clear that officials pretty much throw a dart at a spread sheet to estimate how much different projects cost. Construction is already underway on the T’s Green Line extension into Somerville (the location of The Shad’s home office). But then it was revealed that the project was a billion dollars over budget. Whoops.

So what to do? Maybe cancel the entire project and just leave the gaping holes in the ground and forgo the hundreds of millions of dollars in federal money. This is no way to run a railroad.

2. Making the whole Green Line debacle look tame by comparison is the story of the Ghost Train. During rush hour, the operator of a Red Line train decided he was going to jerry-rig the controls so he didn’t have to actually press down on the “gas.” He then forgot to set the parking break and hopped out of the train. Bye-bye, choo-choo. So with 50 commuters onboard, off went the train. It blew through a number of spots, the riders started to panic and officials finally flipped off the light switch and cut the juice to the third rail. No one was hurt. This is no way to run a railroad either.

“Runaway train never going back
Wrong way on a one way track
Seems like I should be getting somewhere
Somehow I’m neither here nor there”

3. If you thought Ted Cruz was calm, calculating and confident during this week’s Republican presidential debate, you need to see him try to explain his position to FOX News Channel’s Neil Cavuto. If Cruz was a cartoon, you could pull down his tongue, let go, and see it fly up like a window shade:

4. Sometimes you run into a politician that is refreshingly candid. Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter was asked about the one and only Donald Trump. Nutter was speaking in front of a group of clergyman which makes it even better.

5. Speaking of potty-mouth TV appearances, the conservative FOX News’ airwaves were turned blue earlier this month. Commentator Stacy Dash could have said, “The Honorable Barack Obama, president of these United States, did not seem concerned.” But she didn’t:

Similarly, retired Lt. Col. Ralph Peters could have said, “I don’t think the Honorable Barack Obama, president of these United States, has the necessary internal fortitude.” He didn’t:

You’re welcome.
6. In other news, there was an incident at the Budweiser brewery in St. Louis. A young man named…wait for it...Bud Weisser!.. was charged with trespassing.

7. Donald Trump is not only nuts, he’s kinda creepy.

8. Don’t forget, I ripped off the title of this feature from Boston Globe sports columnist Nick Carfardo.