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You ever have a day like this?

I spent a good half hour or more trying to balance my checkbook today, after going through the book and my statement and finding it way out of balance. There's no way it should have been that way, and I did all the math from a month ago to today, and it worked out, only when I added and subtracted the debits and credits since the last statement, it didn't add up.

Finally I figured it out. I had written one of the deposits in the "debit" column, and so even though I credited it correctly, when I added it up today, it was out of balance exactly twice the amount of the mistaken "debit".

Problem solved, and after you do something like this, picture this: put your hand in front of you, palm open, and then THWACK your forehead really, really hard. Dumb!

That THWACK! sound was also heard off the bats of the Cubs in the early innings tonight -- I was worried about the Reds' kid pitcher Matt Belisle, but I'm glad the Cubs weren't listening, as they hit three homers off him in the first inning, including a 482-foot blast to dead center field from Derrek Lee, who's having the month he should have had last September. That homer would have come close to hitting the scoreboard had it been at Wrigley Field, something that has never been done with a baseball.

That THWACK! sound could be heard from the recesses of Michael Barrett's head, after he made one of the silliest throws I've ever seen after turning a nifty double play in the bottom of the 8th. If you didn't see it, here's the setup:

Two walks and a hit batsman load the bases with none out. Rich Aurilia hits a grounder right to Aramis Ramirez, right on the bag at third. Ramirez steps on third, taking the force off at the plate, but then throws to Michael Barrett who tags out Joe Randa.

For some reason, Barrett thinks he has a triple-play chance at third -- but Adam Dunn, who is lollygagging around third, is already out. So Barrett's throw into left field allows the runners to advance to second and third. It gets confusing when Dunn, who is already out, trots across the plate. Everyone, including the announcers and the scoreboard operators and me, thinks a run has scored. Nomar calls the umpires over, Dusty comes out of the dugout, and they straighten it out, but it takes a couple of minutes till everyone else figures it out.

By then Jon Leicester is one strike away from getting out of the inning -- then Jason LaRue makes it all moot by doubling over Corey Patterson's head, scoring two, and the Cubs lost an eminently winnable game to the Reds, 7-6, putting them under .500 again by a game.

THWACK! Now it's Barrett and Leicester smacking themselves on the head, allowing this one to get away.

The CSN broadcast was very odd. With a 6:10 CT start, they had time to do a bit of a "news update". This consisted of a quick story on the contrived controversy between Ozzie Guillen and Frank Thomas of the White Sox about Thomas' playing time when he comes off the DL.

As a baseball fan, I'm interested in this. As a Cub fan, I am perplexed as to why CSN would play this story as their "top story" on a Cub telecast, when they could be doing game previews, etc.

They've got a way to go on the rest of the production, too. At one point, they ran a copyright notice with an audio announcement that said "This telecast is copyright by the Chicago White Sox."

And, their scorebox was way off several times denoting where baserunners were.

Kerry Wood threw pretty well today, but just couldn't put people away. The one that really killed me was Aurilia's two-run single in the bottom of the sixth, which tied the game at 5 when you knew that Wood was going to be done after that inning anyway. This becomes even worse when you check out the sidebar at my SportsBLOGS colleague JD's Red Reporter site. I quote:

Make The Bad Man Stop Hurting the Reds - Bench Rich Aurilia

Would that Dave Miley had only listened to JD tonight.

I think the Cubs are going to be hearing that THWACKing sound reverberating through their heads all night. There's no way they should have lost this game to a clearly inferior team. I'm not a big fan of George Steinbrenner, but after his tirade against the Yankees yesterday after their loss to Baltimore, they had a 13-run second inning tonight on their way to blowing out Tampa Bay. OK, it's just Tampa Bay, but Cincinnati's not that much better than Tampa Bay.

Someone needs to blow up and give this team some passion -- and before tomorrow night, which is now an absolute must-win.