moi v. brown and williamson / by Warrior Ant Press Worldwide Anthill Headquarters in Kansas City, Missouri, USA.

Many of us like to stand in judgement of our hometown sports teams-especially when they suck as badly as the KC Royals. Some lament the poor pitching, others the lack of power, and still others the blundering mishaps. Although these traits are definitely problematic for a professional club to own, potentially they are solvable. However, until the current owner, David Glass, stops treating the team as just another mediocre Walmart franchise, the team will remain trashed. Apparently manager Trey Hillman shaved his 'stache after the latest 10 game losing streak which has momentarily stopped the bleeding and given some fans reason again to hope the team can at least play .500 ball.

Speaking of mediocre franchises moi learned something last week. One benefit of losing your mother to lung cancer and a heart attack, to detesting second-hand smoke, and a major-league dislike of greedy corporations is that it makes it fairly easy to get recused from serving on a month long jury trial involving the malfeasance of Big Tobacco. My disdain for the stupidity of white trash rednecks who smoke Kools for 50 years because they think they are a healthy alternative to unfiltered Camels and my love for film, including The Insider, also may have worked in my favor.

After being dismissed from this jury (if I didn't have a day job it might have been interesting to listen to two sides of America laying a shit trail for 4 weeks), I discovered that this case has already been tried once. And found in favor of the people who apparently have yet to discover that the basis of advertising is a LIE. The retrial courtesy of a technicality expounded by an appellate court. At this point many would give up but whenever there's lots of money involved people tend to keep grubbing for worms until the dirty end.

Yes. I know nicotine is the most addictive substance on the planet. OK. I know it's hard to stop smoking. And cancer deaths from smoking are horrible and sad. I know the tobacco companies lied and cheated and did (and do) most anything to keep people addicted to the product-the drug delivery system. But the link between the habit and the death it causes is apparently clear to everyone except those who still believe that the Royals have a chance this year to make the playoffs.