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Eugene Daily News
Ryan Beltram

Ryan Beltram

Passionate about movies, sports and writing, Ryan hails from Bend but lives in Springfield now. He earned his college degree in journalism from the University of Oregon and hopes to one day write a novel. He also enjoys sunsets and long walks on the beach.
ryan.beltram@eugenedailynews.comhttps://www.facebook.com/ryan.beltram@RyanBeltram

Where Did The Week Go…

One of the many pointless but great conversations in the movie Clerks was whether or not independent contractors who were working on the uncompleted Death Star were innocent victims when it was destroyed by the Rebels. But perhaps they should have been having a more serious and realistic discussion about the construction of the Death Star. One that involves job creation and universal defense.

Apparently many people have had this thought as a petition to the White House (Is this going to be the thing in 2013?) was created to fully fund and begin construction on a Death Star by 2016.

Death Star

Maybe we should hold off on building this thing for a few years.

After drawing more than 34,000 signatures, the White House was legally obligated to respond to the petition and rather than quickly shoot down the request, the higher-ups decided to respond in a funny and creative way.

The official statement, cleverly titled “This Isn’t the Petition Response You’re Looking For,” lays out a cheeky yet plausible reason for denying the request. Here’s a few highlights from the White House (per the official website), written by science and space administration adviser Paul Shawcross:

“The Administration shares your desire for job creation and a strong national defense, but a Death Star isn’t on the horizon. Here are a few reasons:”

  • The construction of the Death Star has been estimated to cost more than $850,000,000,000,000,000. We’re working hard to reduce the deficit, not expand it.
  • The Administration does not support blowing up planets.
  • Why would we spend countless taxpayer dollars on a Death Star with a fundamental flaw that can be exploited by a one-man star-ship?

It makes sense to me. Shawcross goes on to say that this denial shouldn’t sway you future rocket scientists from being ambitious about the future and he creatively infuses some Star Wars references to bring home his point:

“We are living in the future! Enjoy it. Or better yet, help build it by pursuing a career in a science, technology, engineering or math-related field. The President has held the first-ever White House science fairs and Astronomy Night on the South Lawn because he knows these domains are critical to our country’s future, and to ensuring the United States continues leading the world in doing big things.”

“If you do pursue a career in a science, technology, engineering or math-related field, the Force will be with us! Remember, the Death Star’s power to destroy a planet, or even a whole star system, is insignificant next to the power of the Force.”

Seattle might get their Sonics back

For more than a year now, a group led by hedge-fund manager Chris Hansen and Microsoft chairman Steve Ballmer have attempted to buy the Sacramento Kings and move them to Seattle.

It looked as if that plan was dead at the end of last season, but in the eleventh hour, the Maloof family (Owners of the Kings), backed out of an agreement with the city of Sacramento to help pay for a new arena. According to Yahoo! Sports, not only is the deal to sell the team to Seattle back on, but it looks as if the rainy city will have their team back for the 2013-14 season.

Sonics Fans

Rejoice Sonic Fans!

The sale is for approximately $500 million and with support of the NBA, the team would play two seasons in old Key Arena before moving into a new facility. Of course the approval of a new arena proved to be one of the key reasons why the Sonics left Seattle in the first place. The city did not want to pay for a new arena and as a result, owner Clay Bennett moved the franchise to Oklahoma City in 2008.

But Hansen and Ballmer were able to get a $200 million bond from the city of Seattle to help finance a new venue for the Sonics to call home. And I say Sonics because if the group is able to get the Kings to the Northwest, Seattle will reclaim the SuperSonics name, logo and colors.

This is great news for a franchise with a lot of history. The team had success in the late ’70s appearing in back-to-back NBA finals including their lone championship in 1979. The ’90s was perhaps the Sonics’ most successful decade as Gary Payton and Shawn Kemp helped lead the team to multiple 50-win seasons and a trip to the finals in ’96.

Not only is this great news for Seattle fans, but it also renews the I5 rivalry with Portland. We’ve felt a little lonely up here as the only representative of the Pacific Northwest. The move to Oklahoma City left a bitter taste in Sonic fans as that franchise has become a perennial title contender with Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook. At the very least, the move will allow Sonic fans to stop coming to Blazer games in protest when the Thunder are in town.

Strange Observation

Get some clothes on!

Get some clothes on!

Has anyone else noticed the guy who wears shorts in 30 degree weather? Every year without fail, I’ll see someone walking around town in nothing but a pair of Nike shorts and a t-shirt.

Today, it happened to be a t-shirt, shorts, sandals and high black socks. No seriously, that’s what he was wearing. Oh, and he didn’t have a car to drive in. He was waiting for the bus. I stepped out of my car today wearing a baggy fleece zipped all the way up my neck and this was for the 20 seconds that it took to walk from my car to the mall entrance.

I don’t know how these people do it. I’m a skinny guy, not a lot of meat on my bones, but this guy today was skinny like me. Maybe it goes back to when I was a kid and my mom insisted that I bundle up on my way to school. You know, like that scene in A Christmas Story.

Have I become soft? Is it my mom’s fault? I don’t know. I never get sick so that’s a plus.

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