Monday, February 25, 2013

Oscars And Heps

By the time Jennifer Lawrence fell on the way to collect her Oscar, TigerBlog had long since fallen asleep and given up on an Academy Awards show that was somewhat predictable and dull.

He did see Shirley Bassey sing "Goldfinger," which, even at the age of 76, she knocked way out of the park. He missed out on any "Les Mis" singing, and missed Adele as well. And Barbra Streisand.

Meanwhile, back at Jennifer Lawrence, apparently the star of "Silver Linings Playbook" tumbled heading up the stairs.

TB has never seen the movie, though he thinks he'd probably like it, and he couldn't pick Lawrence out of a lineup. In fact, the only picture he's seen of her is the one after she fell, and it's of the back of her head.

"Argo," another movie TB hasn't seen but knows he would like, won Best Picture last night, joining a list of elite movies that began in 1927 with "Wings," which TB had never heard of before he Googled the list of best picture winners.

He also didn't realize that there were 10 movies nominated for Best Picture from 1932 until 1943, when "Casablanca" won.

If you want to judge a decade by the movies that won Best Picture, then TB thinks it's hard to beat the 1970s.

Oh, the 1950s were pretty good, with movies like "From Here to Eternity," "On The Waterfront" and "Bridge on the River Kwai."

The 1960s had four musicals win Best Picture "My Fair Lady," "The Sound of Music," "West Side Story" and "Oliver."

But the 1970s? Here are the 10 movies that won Best Picture:
1970 - "Patton"
1971 - "The French Connection"
1972 - "The Godfather"
1973 - "The Sting"
1974 - "The Godfather Part II"
1975 - "One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest"
1976 - "Rocky"
1977 - "Annie Hall"
1978 - "The Deer Hunter"
1979 - "Kramer vs. Kramer"

TigerBlog would have taken three of the other movies nominated in 1979 - "All That Jazz," "Breaking Away" or "Apocalypse Now" - over "Kramer vs. Kramer," but who can argue with the other nine? That's an epic decade of Best Pictures.

The problem with the Academy Awards now, at least to TB, is that it might as well be called the Narcissism Olympics. Oh well. It is what it is.

And in what universe was Ann Hathaway better in "Les Mis" than Samantha Barks, who played Eponine. 

TB liked reading the tweets about last night's Oscars way more than watching them. They were mostly funny, and they mostly ripped on how bad the show was.

Maybe the show wasn't that bad. Maybe it's just that the show is so formulaic now.

TigerBlog was also caught up on Twitter following the Heps Indoor Track and Field championships from Harvard.

In particular, the men's competition provided amazing drama, which came down to the very end, a bitter end as it would turn out for Princeton. The Tigers had to try to come from behind against Cornell, and Princeton came close to pulling it off.

The last three events were the distance medley relay the 4x800 relay and the 4x400 relay.

Princeton won the DMR (after a great anchor leg from Peter Callahan, who also won the mile to share outstanding runner honors) and finished third in the 4x800. Heading into the 4x400, Princeton needed to finish two spots ahead of Cornell to win the team title.

Unfortunately, it went 1-2 with the Tigers and Big Red, and that second-place finish (by nearly a full second over Brown) was enough to give Cornell the team title by one point, 157-156.

On Twitter, it said that Princeton had edged "Bruno," which TB briefly mistook for a nickname for Brown, which would have given the Tigers the team championship. Instead, "Bruno" was the first name of the Cornell anchor.

As it was, Princeton saw its streak of seven consecutive Heps titles come to end, a very close one at that.

It was the closest men's indoor Heps finish since Princeton beat Cornell by 3/4 of a point in 1986. Princeton's women lost to an outdoor Heps title to Cornell by one point 15 years ago.

It had to be an amazingly intense end to the two days of competition, and TB would have loved to be there for the experience.

It's another example of what's great about Ivy athletics, and that is the wide variety of sports that all work so hard and compete so hard to earn the title of Ivy League champion.

This time, it went against Princeton.

Since TB followed it on Twitter, he'll give the last word to a tweet from former Tiger Trevor Van Ackeren, who offered this:

"And with that, Princeton relinquishes team title to Cornell. :(. But could there have been a greater meet?"

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