If it seems like I haven't been around here much the past couple of days, it's because I haven't. I'm in Blacksburg, Va, at the terrific Virginia Tech veterinary teachers hospital with my little buddy Bogart, who has the mother of all kidney stones lodged in a place that I would rather not describe further.
Let's just say it's in there deep enough that removing it -- and several others -- without turning the four-month-old pup into a lifelong invalid requires the most state-of-the-art veterinary techniques, and the place to go for that on the East Coast is VTech, which also has some pretty good sports teams if you're trying hard to find some relevance here.
Listen, I'm well aware that Bogie (at left in happier days) is just a dog and there are a lot of people out there facing much more important health crises, but he's part of the family and the kids stopped driving me toward bankruptcy when they finished college. So, I'm coming to you from the Best Western in Radford, Va., and that's where I'll be for the next few days, waiting and hoping that the little fellow comes back strong. He's got several more pieces of furniture to chew up before he reaches doggy adulthood.
I'm hoping the Orioles hold their managerial announcement at least until Sunday, or you're going to get my opinion with a southern accent.