Yellow Brick Road Leads Out of Foxboro

 DATELINE: Patriots in Munchkinland

bosch Gillette Stadium?

Something has happened to the New England Patriots in the past month. You may not be in Kansas, but it sure doesn’t look like New England.

Less than kind Patriot-haters might say the rats are leaving the sinking ship.  Whatever your thoughts, the good ship SS Belichick is listing badly after hitting an iceberg in the Super Bowl.

Key players have opted to leave in free agency—and teammates remaining are wishing them good luck and happy voyage, almost as if they are envious.

Foremost among the congratulations on social media are coming from Tom Brady and Gronk.

Gronk still has not dispelled rumors he is going Hollywood on New England, and Tom Brady dropped a hint that he is a man of his convictions in his TV autobiography series—and he appears to have switched convictions in mid-stream.

Life begins at 40—but not in Foxboro.

These key Patriots (Nate Solder, Amendola, Butler, Lewis, and who knows who else) have talked among teammates. If you don’t realize that, you don’t know what’s happening.

It’s like a bad Bob Dylan song: the mattress is now balancing precariously on Bill Belichick’s head. Someone is ready to drop a house on Wicked Witchy Belichick. His former coaches and underlings are picking up the pieces Belichick has shed. And they are happy to have them.

During the season, opposing players attacked the Foxboro as being as unpleasant under the control of Ebenezer Scrooge Belichick before any ghosts haunted him. It was worse than Hieronymus Bosch’s depiction of Hell.

We see the end as coming in a whimper, not a bang. Brady and Gronk are packing their bags, and everyone else is cashing in their chips.

Oh, my. Lions and Tigers and Bears, oh my. The gold brick road is leading to ruination for the Kraft family of marshmallows.


Tom Brady’s End Game

DATELINE:  End of the Time Bomb

smashing mirror

A month later, Tom Brady scraps his final TV episode to surge into a new phase of life: he makes a blitzkrieg of appearances on New York live TV interviews.

After discarding the previously filmed episode of Tom Versus Time which had Tom winning the Super Bowl, the Chopra re-telling has been re-mixed for a re-do.

It seems everyone was a tad overly optimistic, like treasure hunters on Oak Island.

Episode 6 in the saga of the oldest MVP quarterback in NFL history is more than the remains of the day. However, Tom is playing it like the last scene of Sunset Boulevard, ready for his closeup.

Everything is fine, if you don’t confuse Tom with Tom of Finland. They have the same interest in big men, but from different perspectives.

Let the parsing begin.

The bittersweet final episode of the sixpart series called modestly Tom Versus Time was short and bitter. You can slice it up any way you want, but it looks like Tom is considering whether he still has convictions to prove in football.

One of the first calls he receives is not from his wife that from Gronk. Perhaps they are both contemplating retirement to the WWE. Perhaps, too, we might see them his buddies in an action adventure movie. Tom is ready made for the movies and has already appeared in one of those Ted puppet movies with Gronk.

As for the finished series, Tom has suddenly taken to making appearances to plug the video audition tape. He chugged a beer with Stephen Colbert on late night. And he appeared on the Good Morning America show with show biz producer-partner Michael Strahan.

He and Gronk shared a laugh about Danny Amendola, which shows how close Tom and his tight end are. Within 24 hours Amendola was gone in free agency to the Dolphins, where Wes Welker began.

Gronk and Tom may want to go out in retirement, hand-in-hand, on to the Hall of Fame together. Or, maybe they will play one more season together.

Brady admits he’s closer to the end than to the beginning. This episode was a re-do because he really thought he would win another Super Bowl, which would’ve greased the skids into retirement.


Tom asks in the show: why are we doing this? He has no answer. All through the series, he has been sophomorically philosophical. He also admits that losing one’s conviction means you should look for another job.


Is Tom looking for another job? His wife, Gisele Bündchen, clearly admits the past two years have been difficult. She wants him to spend more time with the family. And, she holds all the cards—and all the money too.

The Haunting of Patriot Place

DATELINE: Your Worst Nightmare


The ghost of Malcolm Butler now walks the halls of Patriot Place. Forget the Overlook Hotel and its shining denizens. Foxboro will be a worthy subject for Stephen King.

Like unfriendly spirits, this Patriot specter may hang around for decades, frightening children and bringing back the horrors of Super Bowl LII.

Bad karma often is behind the haunting appearances of ghosts.  We recall in Boston that the ghost of Babe Ruth put a curse on the Red Sox for 80 years. We now wonder if the ghost of Malcolm Butler might do the same for the Patriots.

If you wonder why the Patriots never win another Super Bowl in the 21st century, you will be wise to remember that the Butler did it.

Like some benighted head of the Inquisition, Bill Belichick made his decisions to burn the defense at the stake during the Super Bowl. Heretics be damned, and leading the charge was the ingrate (in Swami Belichick’s eyes), the man who tried to jump ship before the season began: Malcolm Butler.

It was an unforgivable sin—and now Malcolm Butler has paid for it with his reputation. Oh, someone will give him a big payday—and perhaps he will fade into oblivion in some other football venue.

However, in Foxboro, his curse will be laid upon Tom Brady worse than broken mirrors and contempt for sports superstition.

The howls in the night and the bumps and bangs you hear are the restless spirits of players done dirt by Bill Belichick.

Though he may go into retirement, he will leave a haunted Patriot Place for Josh McDaniels, forcing him to call in ghostbusters and hold séances for the betterment of the Kraft legacy.

Move over, Shirley Jackson, Gillette Stadium is the new house on Haunted Hill.

Ring-a-Ding-Ding for Tom Brady

DATELINE:  Bearing the Ring Bearer

scream up close Silent Screamer

It’s only been a year since Super Bowl LI. But for some Tom Brady palsy-walsy connection, the investment has been worth it in spades. No waiting for friendly profit when Tom Brady bankrolls you.

There are few things in life that return itself tenfold in value within one season.

Tom Brady’s authorized replica Super Bowl ring is one of them.

Like all Patriots, the players are allowed to have the team make slightly smaller, replica versions of the players’ ostentatious, tacky Super Bowl rings. That means it wasn’t quite as jewel-encrusted as you might expect if you played the game.

As a result, to hone this bejeweled ring took 10% off the original value. So, if you bought one of these items, or had it as a gift from Brady, it would only cost you (or him) about $30,000. We know from Tom’s video biography, that he gave one special ring to his mother.

We also know the ring-at-auction had Brady’s name etched into it: a dead giveaway of its giveaway.

We don’t know who, what, when, and where, other ring(s) may have gone.

We doubt that Tom’s mother’s the one who sold the ring for $350,000 this week.

We’ve been trying to rack our brains as to what Tom Brady connection or semi-close friend may have received a ring and sold it for 10 times its value. Parting is such sweet sorrow unless you make a quarter of a million bucks on it.

We keep coming back to the godfather of Brady’s child, Guru Alex Guerrero, Tom’s personal massage therapist and dietitian, not to mention Svengali And Mephistopheles.

If anyone has suggestions on which one of Tom’s friends sold his matching replica Super Bowl ring gift, please let us know.

We just don’t think members of the family would sell such an important memento. But, then again, Tom is out of the country. And those confounded mice will play while the Tomcat is away.

To make a quarter of $1 million profitability, we know we would sell it. But we are mercenary, cold-hearted, and ruthless. Can’t you tell from our blog?


DATELINE: Penknife Mightier than the Sword


Now read all your favorite blogs for the year in one handy location: your tablet, your smartphone, or your computer.


Now available, The Loser’s Edition.

Normally we compile a book of annual snide comments about the winner of the Super Bowl, but this year we change horses in the fourth quarter.

Now you can trace the sour grapes of Malcolm Butler up to the sacking by Coach Belichick in the final hours!

Now you can see the complete reviews and reactions to Tom Brady’s reality TV series and all its deadly fallout!

Now you can learn how Trump has poisoned the Patriot well of victory!

Now you can find the fake news about Gronk’s Hollywood career!

Now you cannot find much about Julian Edelman, but he still shows up on the pages now and then!

Now you can see how the Yalta Peace Talks between Kraft, Belichick, and Brady really came about and really went nowhere!

Now available on Amazon, cheap price, cheap words, cheap ideas!

Recommended for smart readers always!



Tom Brady Not Ready for Prime Time

DATELINE: The Arrogance Game

Rodin's thinkerThe Thinker, Fan-Version

If you are among the throngs (yeah, millions for defense, but not one fan for tribute) who await the final episode of the Tom Brady self-congratulatory TV series called Tom Versus Time, you have to wait longer.

It appears Tom and his producer Gotham Chopra have to scrap the final episode and come up with a new one. They finished the series with Tom winning the Super Bowl. Reality bites. His team lost, though he came close to pulling it out, but horseshoes is not football.

You may see a pattern of arrogance in the series that denotes Tom Brady as a wise, old philosopher, on the lines of another problematic Bostonian, Henry David Thoreau.

Gotham Chopra self-admitted their problem with a statement that puts a smiley face emoji on the situation. “Everyone keeps asking me about Chapter 6 of ‘Tom vs Time’ and when it’s going to be ready. The truth is we had a plan, but unconsciously, it was tied to the Pats winning the Super Bowl and, when that didn’t happen (congrats, Eagles!), I felt like we needed to pause and recalibrate.”

Yeah, losing’s a bitch. Having to re-interview Tom Brady for an hour to find bon mots is not pleasant. They had to re-calibrate Tom’s happy-go-lucky philosophy with a reality check. That’s the unfortunate side of “reality TV.”

Chopra ends his emoji apologia with: “So, Chapter 6 — ‘Coming Soon!'”  It sounds like the next chapter of Batman.

We actually would like to see the pre-Super Bowl, arrogant, mad-as-a-hatter Tom Brady. but that episode will be lost forever to history.  Please Note: we said  hatter, to all you haters who have trouble reading.

Patriots Come Up with More Plots than Dickens

DATELINE:  Turn of the Screw?

Belichick Hit Man Hit

Yikes! Babe McDaniels will not leave the New England Patriots.

What gives? You may wonder why or how someone comes to the decision to back out of a promotion to head coach of the Indianapolis Colts.

The team that created treachery by accusing Tom Brady of “Deflategate” was about to introduce Josh McDaniels at a press conference in the morning—when he changed his mind.

Yes, on the heels of a dozen present and former players sending out supporting tweets on behalf of Malcolm Butler, whom Belichick benched for no good reason during the Super Bowl, and all against Bill Belichick, we have the offensive coordinator, and close friend of Tom Brady, reneging on a deal to coach the Colts.

We haven’t seen this sort of machination since—gulp hard, fans, since Bill Belichick reneged on the Jets!

History is repeating itself. But why?

Can it be that Belichick is closer to leaving the Patriots than anyone can possibly imagine by hook or crook?

Can it be that Robert Kraft has indeed sweetened the pot to keep Josh McDaniels—by promising him the job as head of the Patriots in the near future?

If Bill Belichick is leaving, Josh would be the natural choice to succeed him and keep Brady in clover for a few more years.

We are among those who are now thinking that the house of cards constructed by Swami Belichick has dry rot.

We are among those who wonder how much longer Belichick will be coaching in Foxboro. Is it retirement that drives him, or a job with another team?

Shock waves usually create a tsunami. Head for the high ground because we think that Foxboro may be inundated shortly and deeply.

Captain Bligh: Mutiny on Patriots

DATELINE:  Belichick’s Horror Tale

 Boris Badenov Episode: Boris Eliminates Moose

Did Bill Belichick lose his marbles in Minnesota?

Have we just witnessed a Pats’ version of Nightmare on Patriot Row?

Conspiracy theorists have emerged that HC Bill Belichick deliberately sabotaged his own team to lose the Super Bowl. What kind of point was he making in benching his best defensive safety in favor of lesser players?

Did he undermine his own coach Matt Patricia by denying him the player he wanted? Did he punish Patricia for jumping ship to accept another job in Detroit?

Did players in the locker room express anger and disdain for Belichick’s unreasonable punishment of Malcolm Butler?

Why have retired players or former players expressed shock at the strategy of the Great Hoodie?

Has the furor and disdain between Tom Brady and Belichick reached the point where Tom can play one of the best games ever as a quarterback and be forced to swallow hard?

Did Belichick make a point to ownership that forced him to trade away his QB of the future, Jimmy G, and keep a 40-year old who has defied his training staff?

Is Bill Belichick forcing the Patriots to make a Hobson’s Choice, which centers on whether they should fire the head coach for insubordination?

What kind of media feeding frenzy is possible over this, as facts emerge that there was mutiny in the locker room before game—which showed itself in Malcolm Butler crying on the sidelines?

Egad, is this any way to end a season? To end a year of hard work? What politics has undermined the New England Patriots ultimately from winning a sixth Super Bowl under Belichick and with Tom Brady?


Timely Episode 5 for Tom Brady

DATELINE:  An Affair to Remember

brady back

On the day of the ignominious Super Bowl that will live in infamy as the Last Hurrah of so many coaches, Tom Brady chose to release #5 of his Tom Versus Time vanity project.

What Brady never fully understood about his six-part documentary series is that all is vanity when his speaks about his personal philosophy like he was Henry David Thoreau facing a lockup for failure to pay taxes in Brookline.

Right from the get-go, he tells the audience he is tyring to find the deeper purpose of life and and live it in the episode called “The Spiritual Game,” which likely amused Zen-Buddhists everywhere.

Alas, Tom Brady comes across as self-centered in his egocentric universe. He is looking for miracles and magic and finds them only in pro sports. He has had a 27-year affair with football, and his wife approves.

The insights begin 8 weeks before the season in Costa Rica where Brady goes to surf, learning “not to fight Mother Nature.” His Argeninian wife loves it there, and it is tropical and quite in contrast to the coldest game he has ever played in during December.

Narrative jumps over 15 weeks in a flash, and Tom admits life goes by fast: but really, this fast?

Tom knows he is a public figure and withholds paying attention to those distractions. He cannot waste his precious energy on media trivia, except to make a documentary.

“I’m gonna determine what’s important for me,” he tells his fans. Clearly, everything else comes in second to self-importance.

Tom and Patriots lost Super Bowl LII—and the final episode has been withheld to deal with that ugly fact.

New England Pats: Over & Out

 DATELINE: Time Beats Brady


 Patty Jett

It seemed to be the night the magic died.

Brady had gone to the well once too often.

Cue Roy Orbison: “It’s over.”

An ominous augur began the night when Malcolm Butler, one-time super hero of the big game, stood and cried on the sidelines during the national anthem. He was benched for the Super Bowl. His career with the Patriots was over.

There will be grandiose post-mortem analyses galore. The fact remained that the Patriots could not stop Philadelphia Eagles from shredding their defense up and down the field.

The underdog flew high as a mighty eagle.

Tom Brady was sacked in his prime time, with two minutes to go, and lost the ball. You might think he had the game in the bag. But, bags are heavier when you’re forty years old.

At least one questionable call, perhaps two, gave the Eagles touchdowns that might have been reversed during the season. Roger Goodell’s goons were reversing nothing this time.

And, so it ends with a whimper, with no duck boats, and with a cloudy meeting of Belichick, Brady, and Kraft on the horizon. Joint statements may be forthcoming, or perhaps nothing will be public.

Life may begin at forty, but it ends with losing the Super Bowl.

We will have to read the media reality shows.

As far as books on the Patriots season are concerned, few will want to re-live the Super Bow loser, though its political year was one of the most intriguing. Brady’s folly was Brady’s Foles.

Tom Brady Wins Another One

DATELINE:  More or Less Tom Foolery

duke & duchess of Foxboro

Winning the MVP of the NFL 24 hours before you play in a Super Bowl has to take away some motivation for Tom Brady. More honor for the man, less honor than you can muster for any man who has done nothing life-saving, society-protecting, or civilization-advancing.

Brady is a man who uses slights, insults, demeaning treatment, disparaging disrespect to move him to greater heights. To win his third Most Valuable Player award, at age 40, undercuts and guts his psychological attack mode.

How can he use this to intensify his desire to win his sixth Super Bowl?

These are the conundrums of being the so-called Greatest of All Time, GOAT, that must haunt the man before he sleeps this night.

Were we all to have such worries, such issues, such difficulties to face in life, we’d all be happy campers.

Tom Brady cannot be happy about this award, which a few have said was won because everyone else was injured and fell out of contention.

Perhaps that insult is motivation to go out tomorrow and slam-dunk the Eagles.

With so much hype, so many distractions, so much tom-foolery in every story for the past two weeks, for the past twenty years, how can Tom Brady stand one more night of it?

In his ridiculous home movie reality series, he tells his wife Giselle that he wants merely two more Super Bowl rings. It does not compute for a man who has ten digits on two hands.

How will he sleep tonight before the big game? It’s all tom-foolery to ask.


Wherefore Art Thou, Roger Goodell?

 DATELINE: Friend of Tom

 roger-brady Half & Half

After spending a couple of years and millions of dollars trying to ruin Tom Brady’s reputation and destroy his own game’s integrity in an extended courtroom fight, Roger Goodell is now singing a different tune.

No one dares say the name Goodell and Deflate-gate in the same breath.

Nowadays, Goodell gives an interview and notes how astounded he is by the Patriots longevity and marvels at their ageless quarterback.

Wow. The times have changed all right.

That’s show biz, and that’s hypocrisy.

This year Tom is back in the Super Bowl and Roger Goodell is back with egg on his face. He keeps a low profile and exhorts his enthusiasm for Tom being back in a championship like a man beaten by legend and crushed by myth.

Roger Goodell is now a footnote in Tom Brady’s life, a mere laugh spot in his miniseries Tom Versus Time, a name not mentioned, a suspension too far away in the rear-view mirror.

After a brush-up with Jerry Jones who tried to keep him from an extended contract and more wasted money, Goodell now slinks around the NFL, trying to be inconspicuous.

Oh, he will hand out the Lombardi award and the MVP trophy, but he is an afterthought, the dinner mint uneaten, the pillow candy that falls off the bed. He is more like a cracker crumb you have to brush off the bed-sheet.

His face on a T-shirt with a clown nose is now a collectors’ item. It did not have the value of Tom Brady’s stolen Super Bowl jersey. It may not have the value of a faded T-shirt from a Milli Vanilli concert used as a dust-rag.

Roger who?

Tom Brady’s Bunch Home Movies

DATELINE:  Time for Episode 4

sumo day  In China

If your neighbor, the best CPA in the world, insisted on showing you his home movies of how his job interferes with raising his children, you’d run for the exits—or a caffeinated drink.

Instead, this is Tom Brady’s home movies: and millions are clamoring to watch.

“The Emotional Game” is the moniker slapped on the fourth show of the personal philosophy series of Tom Brady, called Tom Versus Time.

Beginning with a trip to China (not mentioned is that it is a promotional trip for one of his products), Brady provides some intriguing looks as he and his son Jack climb up to the Great Wall on a lift, and take the toboggan down.

His son shows what you expect, some physical talents, catching a football on the Great Wall. Tom continues to be politically correct, noting the great culture and place he has been given a chance to visit. He also takes in the Sumo wrestlers with his son.

Back home, we see his visit with his parents and mother who had been sick for over a sick and unable to attend games, until the Super Bowl. Because of her attendance, Robert Kraft appears on a smartphone of Tom’s to have him present her with a ring given to coaches and players.

Tom’s father has a shrine to his son’s career—and Brady gives them credit for uncompromising support all his life. He enjoys having his children, wife, and siblings with parents all in the luxury box at Gillette to watch him play.

Once again, the narrative jumps from Super Bowls to final games against the Dolphins.

Perhaps most intriguing is to see Brady explain that he must learn new techniques to his son as his watches videotape. Even the boy knows this is the secret to success.

Middle-class values are at the heart of his parenting. His wife, supermodel Giselle, notes that for six or seven months, he is a rare commodity in family life: as Brady notes, he is running a marathon during the season and cannot really stop to smell the roses, but his children do seem to keep him balanced.

As personal documentaries go on living subjects, this series is a milk shake frappe served up in a luxury home theater.



Tom Versus the World, episode 4

DATELINE:  Tom’s Camaraderie

 TB & daughter Brady’s little girl

Tom Brady uses “The Social Game,” episode four of his series Tom Versus Time to show his social feelings for teammates like Julie Edelman and Danny Amendola.

They belong to the elite caste: those who are officially part of the Brady posse.

Brady jokes that Edeman pumps up to qualify for naked magazine covers.

Edelman breaks the rules as usual and looks into the camera to tell us he is in an eight year argument with Brady about lifting weights. Alex Guerrero, head guru of the posse, believes that longevity is the key for Tom, and Julian wants only a few more years. Ironically, Edelman hurt himself in preseason and has not played all year.

However, Tom takes two players (Danny Amendola and Julian) with him to the Big Sky resort in Montana, where he goes usually. Brady insists he goes to the resort for some fun, but the main focus is training, obsessive constant training.

All this is interspersed with dangerous riding on ATV and motorcycles. It is also a time filled with f-this and f-that for all your moral prudes.

Brady notes that after five or six weeks of the season people are feeling it, and there are weird reactions: like those who say they have Brady fatigue, or that the Pats are doomed to fall.

In the meantime, Guerrero gives Brady a painful muscle massage on his legs. Theirs is a peculiar relationship. As is his insistence that his son Jack kiss him on the lips. It must be hangover from all those Robert Kraft kisses.

Brady admits he loves the social relationships with his players. His inner circle is clearly an all-male world of camaraderie. He said he loves his teammates, and a coach once told him he wanted to look into his eyes and see the same goals. He is against fear and insults, and that may explain his fury at the insults against his daughter by Boston radio personality.

Brady has also met with the WEEI people and may return to their airwaves.  He shows his great adoration for his daughter in this episode, which may explain the anger he expressed when she was vilified.

Yet, in all this bonding in all aspects of his life from teammates to children, Tom Brady never loses his focus. He does not have Brady fatigue.

Brady’s Tell-All, Episode Two

DATELINE:  A Shakespearean Life of Tom

 tom & julie practice

Tom Brady’s autobiographical miniseries, Tom Versus Time, continues to hit the hot airwaves in the days before the Super Bowl.

The problem with tell-all documentaries that don’t tell much is that friends are not viewers. Viewers are enemies, and they are looking for chinks in the armor, blatant deceptions, errors of judgment, and sundry revelations of the unexpected.

In that way, Brady continues to deliver the goods in the second episode of his self-indulgent rumination.

This show is about his mental game. He is on the down-slide of chess, not checkers. He must process and adapt it to a declining physical body. Tom House, the ex-Red Sox pitcher, advises him on the beach with Alex Guerrero and Julie Edelman doing the hard work (the only one shirtless and shoeless), catching balls.

Tom watches all day tape and film two or three days per week.  His book sits neatly on his desk, in one product placement silliness. He can watch game tape five hours at a time. It’s an addiction. He’s an addict. He sees his losses as a Gong Show with layers of scar tissue. Like an elephant, he lumbers to the finish line.

Brady tells how he often wants to kill Josh McDaniels, and vice versa. That’s love.

Few names or faces are identified because the only one that matters is Tom who struts and frets about being a poor player upon the stage, waiting for tomorrow’s game after a loss.

Tom House ruminates about aging and dusty death, and Tom regards past Super Bowl failures as a walking shadow. In between his tale of sound and fury, he films a commercial for a luxury car with his son at his side at his palatial feudal estate.

This stuff cannot be made up.