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It's the days that you accomplish something that makes it worth it

Where I work, there are two types of days. There are days where I do a lot all day long, only to sit down in my chair wondering if I've spun my wheels all day. There are other days where I push my chest out, brimming with prideful accomplishment. Rarely is there anything in the middle. Work is work. And that's what makes it mundane and terribly claustrophobic sometimes. However, when you finish the day feeling accomplished, knowing you finally filed that report for the latest project that last two weeks when it should have lasted two days, you put your legs up, crack a brew and smile (not at work, of course). I had one of those days today. Lately, we've been working on improving our system automation to keep upgrades and security updates rolling out to clients and servers. Before, it was manual. Before, it sucked ___. Now, it's improving. We're getting there. Today was one of those days where we got everything rolled out, nothing broke, no users freaked, and perhaps was my most accomplished day. Those are the days I'm talking about. When you feel accomplished when you get home. You might not have worked as hard as you did yesterday, or the three days before that. But you got it done.

It's really no different than anything we do in life. It's parallel to sports. You practice hard, you get better, but you might be miles away from refinement. Then you have that day-before walk-through, where you work little, but feel more accomplished because the game plan is set. Practicing makes you better, refines your technique, your conditioning and all that. The walkthrough directly affects the game just as much. Because the game-plan is the game-plan. Without the game-plan, you just have lottery style play selection on game day and a bunch of people going "what the hell are we doing". Enter Bob Bratkowski references.

While I've been working, you guys took over (and that's why you guys rock!). Asking about Anquan Boldin firing Drew Rosenhaus, talking return candidates, 2009 team salary and John Calipari? Tank Johnson, really? So I salute you guys for keeping it going.

However, now it's my time to shine, dropping the quarters into the arcade, running through today's agenda of topics.

A topic was raised with former best friend's blog, asking which team has the best roster of wide receivers. Of course, it's the Bengals. Is there any doubt? Behind the Steel Curtain (Steelers blog) will join me as we represent our respective teams in the argument later this, or next, week.

Antwan Odom bulked up, adding thirty pounds this offseason. More impressively, "even more important is the coaches saying they haven't seen any decrease in Odom's speed and/or quickness."

WDR isn't satisfied how the Bengals look right now.

Dave, on the other hand, is thrilled that the Bengals are having a very uneventful summer. I tip my glass on that too.

The Chickster lists his seven things he's looking forward to seeing. My favorite: "Linebackers Keith Rivers and Rey Maualuga placing a tombstone on Hines Ward. 'R.I.P.'"

Peter Schrager says the signing of Laveranues Coles is the third-best "under the radar" move this offseason.

No one will argue with the success T.J. Hoosh had in Cincy, and Bengals fans were downright devastated when they came "thisclose" to re-signing him, only to lose in the free-agent sweepstakes to Seattle.

Coles is a pretty darn solid pick-up, though. At a much cheaper price, the Bengals get a reliable gamer who will be playing with a chip on his shoulder. Unlike his former Florida State teammate (and Dillard's shopping mate) Peter Warrick, Coles should make quite an impact on the Cincinnati offense. Though admittedly more of a Chad Pennington guy than a Brett Favre one, Coles was still quite productive at the age of 30 for the Jets last season. With a four-year deal valued at $28 million, Coles is both a fiscally-smart and a rare savvy signing by the Bengals. Don't be shocked if he becomes one of Carson Palmer's favorite targets in '09.

Michael Johnson returned home Friday, delivered a commencement speech and had his high school number retired. Cool.

Mike Zimmer on Tank Johnson:

"The one thing you look for in a three technique," Zimmer said, "is first-step quickness. Where they can get the foot off the ground, get off (the line) when the ball is snapped. So far he's shown that really, really well."

Carson Palmer is impressed with Benson and the two are fast becoming friends.

Do you realize: Levi Jones still hasn't attached to another team.

This is a notice: No more Bleacher Report links or references until they can at least spell Cincinnati correctly. Damn it. It's not that hard. Spell check is often a nice tool to have for writers. Spell Check. Spell. Check.

Who else is pumped about the Reds this year? Joey "Freaking" Votto, second in the National league batting .364 and timely home run hitting god. Bronson Arroyo going for a National League leading seventh win. Johnny Cueto fourth in the league with a 2.37 ERA. Francisco Cordero leading the Majors with 13 saves -- in 13 opportunities. Of 23 hits by Lance Nix, 15 are extra bases. Pitcher Micah Owings batting .296 with a home run, four runs batted in and three doubles. Hell, he's even got a triple. Arthur Rhodes, one run allowed in 16 innings.

Tonight the Reds, who are two games behind the St. Louis Cardinals, go for the sweep against the Houston Astros. Cheer 'em on.