We finally made the decision, we are cutting the cord! We are joining millions of families that have made the decision to move away from cable and thus far, it has been amazing.

Enough was enough. I realized one night that we weren’t watching TV that much, so why have a massive TV channel option, if we watched, maybe 10% of the channels? And it was at that moment, that I looked up our monthly bill and almost fell out of my chair, as it was now $220 a month.  After a little research and chatting with our cable provider a few things were really clear to me in my thought process:

  1. I wasn’t going to get all of my Sporting events that I am use to viewing.
  2. I was going to need to add a Digital Antenna.
  3. I needed to look at another device, i.e. Roku to supplement other 3rd party providers.
  4. The cable company didn’t care or try to keep us as a customer.

1) Sporting Events – I love sports! I live for College Basketball and Football. There is nothing better than watching football on a Saturday, but here is the realization with kids, I wasn’t getting to watch many games. At best, I got in 1 – 3 College Football games in a year and I did get most of my basketball games, but a lot of times I was recording them and watching them after the kids went to bed. So my argument to keep cable for sports, quickly went away.

2) Digital Antenna – I wanted to keep local channels, just in case we needed local coverage. There were many websites that provided options and data on which would work best. I did have 1 limitation that I was faced with and that is that I didn’t want a rooftop or exterior antenna, due to the fact that our plan is to move. So I wanted/needed something that would be mobile and easy to use and setup. I settled with the Mohu 50 after a lot of research and so far, I have been impressed. I have been able to watch golf and the Kentucky Derby with minor issues. But all in all, it has worked just fine and I am out $70 for the antenna.

3) Devices and 3rd party providers – We have a Sony Blue Ray player with web apps, such as Netflix, Hulu Plus, Amazon, MLB, etc. so we were covered with being able to watch all of our shows that my wife and I enjoy and also the shows that boys like. I get my sports fix with my MLB package so that I can watch the Astros and this becomes a win win situation.  And then another app came out called Sling TV and they offer ESPN and a lot of the cooking shows that I enjoy, but Sling TV isn’t available on the Sony Blue Ray. After conversations with a buddy of mine, he convinced me to get a Roku and man, that has been awesome! There are so many more channels that we’ve opened up a whole new library of kids shows and other shows for my wife and I to watch, that I really don’t see the need to ever go back to cable. But, from a cost stand point, a new Roku player was $100, we have Netflix at $8/month, Hulu Plus $8/month, we already had Amazon $99/yr and then I got the MLB package for $125. See the breakdown below for a better comparison)

4) Cable didn’t care that we were leaving – I called and chatted with reps from the cable company, explained my desire to cut the monthly cost, significantly and their best offer was cutting our bill by $20 month, which didn’t factor in taxes, etc. so really the $20 a month savings, was closer to $10. There was a time when cable companies would get creative and try to keep customers, but I think that those days are long gone. So, they didn’t fight to keep me and they could have kept me as a basic cable subscriber for the right offer, but they didn’t try to keep my business and I didn’t feel bad turning in the equipment. Now, our monthly bill is $50 a month, down from $220 a month, for a savings of $170 a month.

I get it, I really see why people are cutting the cord more and more everyday. It makes sense, especially if you aren’t watching tv. But let’s look at real numbers on monthly costs:

ServiceMonthly CostYearly CostOne Time FeesSavings
Cable Service$220$2,640$170/month or $2,040/yearly
Hulu Plus$8$96$0
Digital Antenna$0$0$70$0
MLB Package$0$125$0

The reality is actually even simpler than the cost savings, we are reading more at night, spending more time as a family and less distractions and we are getting outside more. I know, it isn’t normal to say that we are unplugging and cutting the cord, but we have and we have loved it. In quick numbers, because I like to look at real term facts and measurements. By saving $170 a month, just from cable, we will be able to pay off 2 more credit card bills in less than 1 year! There, I said it, there is another benefit to cutting the cord, financial and getting out of debt faster.

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All-Star Outfielder for the Los Angeles Dodgers, Matt Kemp did something the other night, that was not meant to be caught on camera, but I think that we are all glad that it was.  Matt Kemp thought of someone else first. He found out about a young man that has cancer and what happens next, well if it doesn’t bring a tear to your eye, you should seek medical attention.

Matt Kemp gave the young fan his hat, jersey, cleats and a signed baseball and more importantly, a memory for the rest of his life.

I hope that more athletes step away from the lime light and do more random acts of kindness like this.

Great job Matt.  And I’m really glad that someone recorded this moment.  Please take a moment to read more about Matt Kemp and this hero type kindness.

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When I grew up playing sports, the coaching staff always took the time to teach us the basic fundamentals and to also serve as role models.  Oh, how the times have changed.

Yesterday it was reported that Rutger’s basketball coach, Mike Rice, had been throwing basketballs at players and physically pushing his players. I’m not sure what bothers me more? The fact that he did these things or that the University waited several months before firing him? ESPN had run a story on Coach Rice yesterday, showing videos of him kicking his players, throwing basketballs at their heads and even grabbing them by their jerseys. And now, 24 hours later, Rutgers University has made the decision to relieve him of his head coaching duties.

But the interesting part of this story, to me is this:

Rice had been suspended for three games in December and fined $50,000 after athletic department officials saw video footage of abuse.

So, Rutgers was area of this situation, suspended Coach Rice and fined him.  I am all about giving people second chances, but not when they could potentially hurt a player.  How are our kids supposed to learn how to play the game the right way, when coaches are doing this? Was this an isolated incident in the NCAA. I am sure that it is. And I am also sure that given the chance to do this again, that Coach Rice would never have chosen these methods of coaching.  And I do sincerely hope that at some point time in the future, another university will give Coach Rice another chance to redeem himself. But today, I watch in disbelief and think back to my coaches and the lessons that they taught us.  And not just lessons about fundamentals to field a ground ball or take a charge. But how to conduct yourself when you are in public, because you represent your school and team.  The importance of teamwork and that you have to rely on others in life for help. Thanking a teammate for a pass or picking up a missed ground ball.

Was this an isolated incident, I certainly hope so, because I really hope that my kids never see a coach treat players like this. And I would really hope that any university or high school program today, if they know of any of their coaching staff that is using these same coaching techniques and styles, are evaluating and improving their programs.  Kids need role models.  They need good coaches. I just feel bad that the kids at Rutgers had to experience this.

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Part of growing up and learning about life, is that sometimes you lose. Whether it is an argument, sports, etc.

Some days, life really stinks. I know that as a baseball fan, the way that the Yankees played really made me scratch my head. I’ve never seen a more overrated and under achieving team before in my entire life. And at the end of a 4 game sweep, I just tell my kids that sometimes you lose, just like the Yankees did.

Life isn’t going to always be fair. But if you work hard, do what is right and always be true to both yourself and your family and friends, I believe that you don’t quite lose as much.

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I’m going to get nailed for this post, but oh well, here goes. Trophies. I hate them and here is why I have a problem with giving them out to children playing sports.

Kids today are growing up and thinking that if you try your best, then everyone gets trophies. Wrong. I understand kids playing t-ball, teach the fundamentals and do not keep score, but there comes a point in time that kids need to learn that there are winners and there are losers and at the end of the game, that trophies are not handed out for doing your best. Kids need to understand that sometimes you win, sometimes you lose, sometimes, it rains the game out. Point being, we can not always win every game. And we sure as heck do not get trophies as we grow up and go through life for trying hard.

My nephew called the other day to tell me that he got a hit in his t-ball game. And that was awesome. I was so proud of him and I wish that I could have been there to see him run the bases, because when he called me, I could tell how happy he was. And he told me how they all lined up at the end of the game and congratulated the other team. So when I asked who won, there was a long pause. So I asked which team scored the most runs? Again, a long pause. So, I asked if everyone got trophies and they did and he was so happy.

I get it, trophies symbolize something to little kids, a since of accomplishment. But it also sets the bar low too, because in life, we have to work harder than the other person to rise throughout the company and move ahead.  We need to teach kids that it is OK to work hard, that it is OK to put in the extra time at practice to get ahead. By just saying that everyone is getting trophies, it just says that everyone is at the same level and the are not. I have two sons, I am guessing that one is going to be better at baseball than the other.  I do not know for sure, but that is just my guess. But I am going to tell them how when I was a kid, I hit 200 balls a day, year round. And I would shoot 100 free throws a day, year round. Or I would run to stay in shape, year round. I did not want to be average, I wanted to start at either short stop or third base for my baseball team and I did. I wanted to be either the Point Guard or the Shoot Guard and I wanted to be the one that the coach would point to at the end of the game when the score was tied, to take the winning shot and I was. Hard work pushed me to the next level, not getting a trophy and it has continued throughout my work career as well.

So, today, after lunch and I do my job, I think that I am going to ask if we can all get trophies, because we all showed up today. Good job us!

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I grew up playing sports. I honestly, can not remember a time where I was not playing a sport, primarily either basketball or baseball as a child. Every Saturday morning, we played basketball. Mondays and Wednesdays were baseball. Soccer was Thursdays. So Friday and Sunday we had off, however, we were usually playing basketball at the gym.  Some of my most vivid memories were playing sports, whether it was the friendships formed from playing or the coaches that took the time to teach us the love of the game.

The times have changed. There are actually games that being played on Sundays, time that should be devoted to church and family.  As much as I love sports, there has to be boundaries. I want my sons to play sports, but I want them to have their priorities in order: church, family, and then sports.  So as my wife and I have talked about this, we have decided that we want to encourage our children to play sports at the YMCA, where Christian values are placed as the core values and sportsmanship are the top priorities.  But, they also do not play games on Sundays, which is important to my wife and I.



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As long as I can remember, I always played sports, whether it was soccer, basketball, baseball, or football. And it was always stressed the importance of good sportsmanship. So needless to say, that when I saw the brawl between the University of Cincinnati and the University of Xavier, I was disheartened.

I want my sons to love sports as much as I did, but I don’t want them learning that fighting is acceptable. When I was playing, you shook hands at the end of the game and told each player from the opposing team, good job or congratulations.

Maybe the times have changed? Maybe the times of where you celebrate the other player and give them a hand up when they have fallen or thanked a thanked a teammate for a pass.  We worked hard, training year round and put forth our best. And had any of my teammates or myself been involved in a brawl like the one from the clip, we would have received a much harsher punishment than a few games suspension. We would have been kicked off the team and never allowed back.

Where are the consequences for their actions? 2 – 4 games being suspended? They embarrassed their school, they embarrassed their team, and more importantly, the embarrassed themselves.

I will teach my sons the right way. They might not be the best athletes, but they will be respectful. They will play hard and give it their all. They will thank their teammates. And they will remember that when they put on a jersey, the represent more than just themselves.


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In thinking about the topics that I have been writing on the past, I thought that now would be a good time to expand and add new topics of discussion. That being said, the first two new topics will be Sports and the always controversial Politics.

Being both a father and also a guy, Sports has always been a huge part of my life and I am hoping that my boys will love playing and watching sports as much as I did and continue to do so. And as for politics, I want my boys to learn about history and politics and allow them to make decisions that best represent their views. I am sure that I will have a little influence, but I want to try to give them both sides of each argument.

Let the discussions begin!

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As most Americans yesterday, my wife and I sat down and watched the Baltimore Ravens vs. New England Patriots. The game lived up to the hype to say the least, but with 20 seconds to go, the Baltimore Ravens kicker, Billy Cundiff had the opportunity to kick a 30 yard field goal to send the game into overtime. As the pressure mounted, he pushed the kick wide left, the Patriots are going to the Super Bowl and the Ravens are going back to Baltimore. And as I sat in my chair in disbelief, my wife shaking her head asking how he could have missed a kick that he has made thousands of times, I simple said, “It’s just a game.”

Now, please understand, I love sports. There were three things that I was told when I was a kid:
1) That we support and love UNC
2) That the Yankees were the greatest dynasty every built
3) Under no circumstance do you cheer for duke (or as we were taught to spell it, dook)

And when it comes to the UNC vs. dook game, all bets are off. I save all of my bad language for those games. But at the end of the day, it’s just a game. So, last night, as I was thinking about that, I realized I don’t want my boys having that much pressure put on them for sports. I want them to play, but I want them to play and love it, because it is what they want to do. I want them to understand, that sports is just as much about teamwork, as it is winning a game.

So when I read the press game comments last night and I read Ray Rice and Ray Lewis talked about how this is a team sport and that the blame should not fall on Billy Cundiff, I was really glad, because they are right. The team lost the game, not the kicker, he just happened to miss a field goal. The game was not won or lost on 1 play, but a series of plays. My hope, is that when it is time for Billy Cundiff to retire, that he will be remembered for his off the field actions – helping raise money for hunger programs, Teammates for Kids to name a few, but the sad reality, is that our society will remember 1 kick, from a game.

And at the end of the day, it’s just a game.

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