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Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Johan Santana Trade Analysis: This One's For You, Pete

Ah, Pete. Young, silly, silly Pete. How's the Twins bandwagon doing these days? Pretty creaky, I'm guessing (and not because there are too many people on it).

Here is what the Twins got for trading Johan Santana to the Mets: (these are minor league stats)

Carlos Gomez: ('06 AA) .281 AVG, .350 OBP, .423 SLG, .773 OPS, 7 HR, 48 RBI (these are from 2006; his 2007 stats are jacked because he played on 4 squads-including the Mets).

Scouting Report: Plus arm and speed, plus fielder, plus base stealer, nice swing. Negatives include too aggressive at the plate, poor situational hitting, no power

Philip Humber:
('07 AAA) 25 GS, 11-9, 139 IP, 129 H, 70R, 21 HR, 44 BB, 120 K, 4.27 ERA, 1.24 WHIP

Baseball America and Baseball Prospectus both project Humber as a MLB #2 or 3 starter, although he has already had Tommy John surgery and is only 27.

Deolis Guerra: ('07 A+) 20 GS, 2-6, 89.2 IP, 80 H, 44 R, 9 HR, 25 BB, 66K, 4.01 ERA, 1.17 WHIP

Plus change, good fastball, big, very young (18 years old). Too tough to say if he has MLB stuff as of this point.

Kevin Mulvey
: ('07 AA/AAA) 27 GS, 12-10, 157.2 IP, 147 H, 74 R, 56 ER (that is a huge discrepancy! Weird.), 4 HR, 43 BB, 113 K, 3.20 ERA, 1.21 WHIP

Fantastic vs. right handers, throws four pitches consistently for strikes. Struggles against lefties. Projects as a #3 or 4 starter.

Interesting stuff when you break it down like this. The media--in all their baseball-knowing glory--talks it up as though the three pitchers are merely throw-ins to go with Gomez. This actually could turn out to be a good trade; those are three young and seemingly talented pitchers.

Anyways, back to Pete. What were your reasons for jumping off the Cubs bandwagon again? The Tribune/shitty ownership and stupid fans.

Well, looks like the shitty ownership followed your ass to Minnesota. So this may be a solid trade, but that said: why in the hell would you make this trade in the offseason? It makes no sense! Why on earth don't you wait and trade Santana around the trade deadline when desperate teams will give up whatever you ask for in order to get pitching help to make a push to the playoffs? I understand that Johan has a no-trade clause, but isn't his whole deal that he wants to go to a contender? So you put him to a contender team at mid-season, and regardless of what happens, he still gets the same contract next year.

And what about stupid fans? Here you go...

From mink0 on the Scout.com Twins message board:

"Im confident the twins made the right deal... The only reason of that is because the twins have made good trades before I.E. the knoblauch & Pirzinski trades. I really dont know much about these prospects but if the twins would trade santana for them, these guys must be good. Once the trade gets completed where would we see these guys in our system? Will gomez be a shoe in for the starting CF job? and what does our starting rotation look like since Santana wont be in it?"

Wow, that is some great deductive reasoning there. "Well, our old GM made good trades in the past, so this trade must be good, too."

So enjoy Twins-dom, Pete. Oh, and did I mention the Cubs went to the playoffs last year? And soon, they won't be owned by the Tribune anymore? Yeah, we still have stupid fans, but at least we won't have both of your big problems anymore.

This is literally your last chance to get back on board the sturdy Cubs wagon. But I swear to God, this train is leavin'!

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Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Gnarls Barkley: "Run"

You wanna hear a new joint from Gnarls Barkley? Of course you do.

No word on if this is a new single, when a new album is coming out for sure or what, but whatever: this song is really, really good. Pretty trippy, definitely has a weird 60's feel to it.

Now get down on the good foot and download this song. Let your opinion be known in the comments...

Gnarls Barkley "Run"

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Sunday, January 27, 2008

Drunk In Omaha: Your Sunday Night Links

I thought we could start out the Sunday Night Links with a revisit of one of our most-discussed topics: "Omaha has to be one of the drunkest cities in America, right?" Well, it has finally been answered in a quantifiable manner. And the result?

Yes. Yes it certainly is.

Currently on Men's Health website, they compiled all sorts of data and came up with "America's Drunkest Cities." Here are the Top Ten (er, I guess it could be "Bottom Ten" depending on your outlook):

1. Denver, CO, Overall Score: 100
2. Anchorage, AK, 99
3. Colorado Springs, CO, 98
4. Omaha, NE, 97
5. Fargo, ND, 96
6. San Antonio, TX, 95
7. Austin, TX, 94
8. Fresno, CA, 93
9. Lubbock, TX, 92
10. Milwaukee, WI, 91

Lewis Black once said that Milwaukee is the "drunkest city on the planet." Well not this year, Milwaukee! O! what a city! Other notables:

-Lincoln, NE, 56 (with a 95 rating in binge drinking--shocker).
-Des Moines, IA, 54
-Chicago, IL, 62
-Kansas City, MO, 33

There are also other lists like this one on the MH website, including one called "Is Your City A Debt Trap?" Apparently Lincoln is the 6th-most fiscally-responsible city in America, with the least credit card debt in America and the lowest debt-to-limit ratio in America.

How is this possible? I know, like, 5 people who left Lincoln debt-free. I suppose that they only count permanent residents in this, but then again, I don't think Lincoln would have a 95 on the binge-drinking scale if that were the case.

On the opposite end of the spectrum, would you like to guess what city is the highest? Total shocker: Las Vegas. (Of course we want casinos legalized in Nebraska! They'd be great for the economy!)

On to the links....

--A nice story about Daytrotter, a music studio in the Quad Cities (Rock Island, IL specifically) that is more and more becoming a must-stop for touring musicians to stop by and drop a few tracks. Plus, the story mentions Omaha. It's pretty clear that the Tribune was simply trying to get linked to Heavy Soul to drive up traffic! Well, it worked, Tribune. Now go sell the Cubs to someone who will give a shit, please.

--For myself, this year's Super Bowl is the "well, at least I get to drink beer and make kick-ass chili on a Sunday Bowl." I certainly don't like either team, but they have their redeeming qualities: The Giants road unis are probably a top-3 uni in all of sports; The Pats will hopefully forever banish the 1972 Dolphins and their incredibly overrated coach from studio shows' discussion when some team goes 7-0 to start the season.

However, I came across this story from the Boston Herald via Awful Announcing. Some highlights:

Likewise, 72 percent of Pats fans live in homes worth north of $200,000, compared to 63 percent of Giants yahoos, the Nielsen data show.

Pats fans consistently show better taste than their Gotham counterparts, according to Nielsen.

We drink Amstel Light, not Bud Light. Giants fans slug back lots of whiskey.

We are likely to read connoisseur magazines like Wine Spectator. Gotham fans like to pig out on junk food like pretzels, chips and nuts. They’re also less likely to favor organic food than other New Yorkers.

Giants tailgaters are conspicuous consumers who party off the backs of Land Rovers and showy BMW SUVs. Pats fans are more likely to tailgate off the back of an understated Lexus or a sturdy Volvo SUV.

Holy shit. I don't even know where to go with this this. Basically, Ms. Heslam says of not just Giants' fans, but of everyone:

"Unless you're rich, you drink really overrated beer, read Wine fucking Spectator, only eat organic foods, and drive a Volvo, you're a shitty person. And a loser." Also, and just for the record--here are the prices for 2008 models of the vehicles she mentioned:

Land Rover LR2: $36,819
BMW X3: $41,917
Lexus GX: $47,580 (and P.S., the most expensive Lexus was a lot more expensive than the most pricey Land Rover)
Volvo XC90: $48,132

Understated indeed. I hope $48k will buy you a "sturdy" car.

What a bitch.

-Will Lietch (editor of Deadspin) released a book this week called "God Save The Fan: really long rest of the title." I'm reviewing it for The Reader as we speak. 80 pages or so into it: I give it a really solid "A." It is formatted just like a Klosterman book, and is consistently really funny/thought-provoking. I'd highly recommend it.

-Speaking of Klosterman, he apparently whipped up a eTicket entry about the Patriots and how "perfect" they are for ESPN. It is typical Klosterman, where he takes something he likes and explains the reasons for doing so, then ends the column hoping for the worst outcome for them. I love me some Chuck Klosterman, I really do.

-Here's an article basically saying that the hiring of Tim Beck to Nebraska's staff has saved recruiting in 2008. Three new committs this weekend!

-In further Bo Pelini hiring hoopla, Sipple has a nice column about the sometimes forgotten aspect of Bo's career: he's coached in some big damned games, and has kicked ass while doing so. I really think we might have lucked out here, fellow Husker fans.

-A very good interview with Spin's "Entertainer of the Year," Kanye West.

-Here's your libertarian highlight of the week: Dr. Ron Paul on foreign entanglements: "The Ties That Strangle." The essay summary is "Our founding fathers knew a better way to talk with our neighbors, do honest business with them, cultivate friendship, allow travel and open communication. We should neither initiate violence, nor take sides in conflicts that are none of our business." Just common sense platforms in the vein of our Founding Fathers. Join the revolution!

That's all I've got in me for tonight. I might try to find some more tomorrow morning. Hope everyone had a great weekend!

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Friday, January 25, 2008

It's Been A While...

...since we've had some good ESPN hatin' around here. I don't have anything new to add, but columnist Jason Whitlock--who I'm a big fan of anyway--does:

5. The best thing about ESPN host Dana Jacobson's meltdown at the Mike and Mike roast is that it proves beyond a reasonable doubt that women can be just as publicly stupid and vulgar as men.

Jacobson, in a drunken attempt at humor, F-bombed Notre Dame and Jesus. ESPN suspended the "First Take" host for a week. You drop a woman in ESPN's locker-room environment and "surprisingly" she acts just like Sean Salisbury and everyone else. Personally I like Salisbury. The trouble he got into at ESPN for showing off his manhood reminded me of my college playing days when everyone would rush to get naked when the cleaning lady ran late tidying our locker room.

The second-best thing about Jacobson's rant is that it drew attention to the lame Mike and Mike roast. ESPN desperately wants you to believe Greenberg and Golic are big stars. They're not. If they were, they wouldn't have an F-list celebrity/assclown like Jacobson roasting them.

The next time Greenberg or Golic say something insightful or provocative will be the first time.

Well, that about sums it up. I'm just glad we're not the only ones who notice this shit.

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I had to get this out there...

Went and had beers at the thunderwood with Toffer tonight. What happened is a first, and completely unreal. We were at a table talking about the Cubs line up for this season, and drinking in high school, when not once but twice we were appraoched by females, (granted both blown completely out the frame),asking if we were gay and on a date!!! The second claimed that her assumption we were gay was based on us being "pretty". Am I living in a world where you want to go out and have a few beers with a friend means that you are on a date? I would like to think that if both of us were saddled up at the bar, and not at a table, no one would have payed any mind. I have no problem with any sexual preference because who am I to question happiness. That said, the balls on people who come up to your face to ask some shit like that. What f-ing audacity!!! Any thoughts on this matter blogging America?

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Thursday, January 24, 2008

You lucky Omahans

There are times when you know what you have before it's gone. In my case, it was recognizing the good fortune of the Omaha music scene. In what some would label as predictable, I have concluded that Iowa's capital city does in fact pale in comparison. It's like the Kucinich of stops for anyone good. Good in theory (between Minneapolis, Chicago, KC, Omaha, etc.), but as a musician I can't imagine getting butterflies about coming to The Moine.

Allow me to humor myself with a comparison:

Upcoming shows that I would attend in Omaha

1/25: Cursive at Slowdown. $14.
1/31: Blood on The Wall at Slowdown. $7.
2/5: Sierra Leone's Refugee All-Stars at Slowdon. $17.
2/6: Yeasayer w/ MGMT at Slowdown. $8.
2/21: Capgun Coup at The Waiting Room. $7.
2/23: Neva Dinova at Slowdown. $8.
2/25: Har Mar Superstar at The Waiting Room. $8.
2/25: Drive-By Truckers w/ The Felice Brothers at Slowdown. $20.
2/26: Black Lips at The Waiting Room. $10!
3/4: Whigs at The Waiting Room. $8.
3/5: Brother Ali at The Waiting Room. $12!
3/19: British Sea Power at The Waiting Room. $10.
4/10: The Black Keys w/ Jay Reatard at Slowdown. $17.
4/11: Blitzen Trapper at Slowdown. $8.
4/12: Minus Story at Slowdown. $7.
4/19: David Dondero at The Waiting Room. $10.

Upcoming shows in The Moine that I would attend:

1/25: Dick Prall at Peoples.
2/2: Josh Davis Band at Peoples.
2/19: Delta Spirit w/ Matt Costa at The Maintenance Shop (Ames).
3/9: Wilco at The Val-Air Ballroom.
3/20: British Sea Power at Vaudevill Mews.


Here's a list of secondary acts just to give The Moine a pat on the behind:

1/28: Velvet Revolver at The Val-Air Ballroom.
2/6: Van Halen at Wells Fargo Arena.
2/13: The Redwalls at The Maintenance Shop.
2/22: Deep Blue Something of "Breakfast at Tiffany's" fame at Peoples.
3/25-3/30: High School Musical on Stage at Civic Auditorium.

I'm saddened.

Rhymefest- Man in the Mirror

Rhymefest samples Michael Jackson illegally in this dedication album.

Download it before it gets pulled.

Pure genious.

Rhymefest- Man in the Mirror Mixtape

Special guests include: Talib Kweli, Daniel Merriweather, Ghostface Killah and Mary J. Blige.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Nebraska Recruiting / Shawn Watson Update

**UPDATE** The Lincoln Journal-Star (via the "Life In The Red" blog, which we mentioned was really good earlier this week) is reporting that Shawn Watson has turned down an offer to become Alabama's Offensive Coordinator. I am sure this was quite tempting from a monetary standpoint--it is reported that Nick Saban will pay his OC in the neighborhood of $400K, or almost double what Watson is making. This is fantastic news, friends. Landing Will Compton is good news and all, but Watson sticking around as OC next year is much bigger--in my opinion, anyway. I'm really getting excited about 2008...

So 4-star Missouri recruit Will Compton is supposed to announce his final choice for where he will be playing football at today. Compton originally committed to the Huskers under Bill Callahan, but since he got fired, he has been taking official visits elsewhere.

Word around the campfire is that Compton will be sticking with his Nebraska pledge. While I don't think he is the defensive messiah that people on message boards apparently do, it is a big pledge because it takes him away from Mizzou. Not to mention he was being recruited by big-time names like Notre Dame and Michigan.

It seems as though Bo Pelini's staff has weathered the storm of decommitts that started right after Bo was hired to come back strong on some guys, not to mention bring some guys into the fold that were not being really recruited before.

Here's to another strong recruit, and many more to come!

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Monday, January 21, 2008

Breaking Bad

Did anyone else catch the series premiere of "Breaking Bad" on AMC last night? After reading some good reviews I decided to tune in and I was glad I did. Based on the first episode I plan to keep watching. The basic premise is that the main character, a 50-year-old high school science teacher, suffers a kind-of breakdown after finding out that he has lung cancer and only a few years left to live. He then teams up with a local meth dealer and former student and uses his chemistry expertise to cook chemically pure crystal meth. It was a pretty crazy first episode and it looks like the show could go in a variety of directions.

Sorry I don't have the energy to write an in-depth review, but I just wanted to see who else tuned in, and to recomend it for those who didn't

Sunday, January 20, 2008

It's now a lot harder to make fun of Creighton...

...after this. This is really a fantastic idea. And I tend to agree that since the bar closes at 10 and won't serve shots, binge drinking on the premises will be fairly difficult, though thankfully not impossible.

What I would really like to discuss is how ridiculously biased this article is. The Weird Herald really went out of their way, I felt, to interject exactly how they feel about the idea (shockingly opposed, sarcasm) at several points throughout the story. Nothing this fucking blight on the journalism world does at this point surprises me, but this was absurd.

Look at the last quote.

Look at how much attention was given to UW-Madison compared to the little private school in Kansas that is probably a hell of a lot more comparable to Creighton and supposedly doesn't have very many problems.


I'd like to open it up to discussion. Was this article pushing an agenda? This bar is a pretty awesome idea, right? Does the World Herald even need to exist with the exception of Tom Shatel and Robert Nelson? Should Mike Kelley be writing for the Lexington Clipper instead of making my brain melt bi-weekly? Suck it, Creighton?

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Friday, January 18, 2008

Pete's NFL Picks: Conference Championship Edition

From the frozen tundra of Omaha: It’s Friday, the snow is falling, and the tone is solemn around these parts. Not only because of the 45 minutes it will take me to get to work, as opposed to the usual 15, but also due to the sadistic cycle that is the NFL playoffs.

The grim realization that there are only three more games to be had leaves me depressed. Why, 7 days ago, there were seven games left, and 14 days ago there were 11. When you root for the Cleveland fucking Browns, this cycle usually starts about the third week of
September, but this year was different. And it took longer to hit me.

In three more games there will be no more Tom Jackson, three team teaser bets, Tom Brady’s chin-butt, The Chargers (well, it’s not all bad), Cris Collinsworth, Hammerin’ Hank, etc. As an NFL fan, it’s hibernation time with only the occasional NFL’s Greatest Games or Mel Kiper Jr sighting in between naps.

But, let’s kick the mood up a little. If you haven’t yet, go to Deadspin and read the Jamberoo for the week to fire it up. It’s obscene and hilarious and I don’t know why everyone doesn’t enjoy it weekly like I do. I don’t even feel good about linking to it, that’s how tremendous it is.

Other NFL notes:

1. The Green Bay game last week was an exceptional watch. Lambeau, Favre doing Favre stuff, turnovers, points, snow, victory. I give the game a solid 9.7 out of 10 on the entertainment scale in spite of not really even being a close game for the entire second half. That’s what the NFL is all about, cherubs.

2. The Tony Sparano hiring is typical Parcells, and I mean that in a good way. There was absolutely no way he was going to go out and get an alpha dog he was not familiar with to come in and run things. This way, he can exert all the control he feels like without the accountability that comes from being the head coach.

3. Philip Rivers is a dick.

4. The Patriots have really not been much better in the second half of the season than the Chargers. More on this later.

5. The New York Football Giants are now 8-1 on the road. And Eli Manning is their quarterback. Holy hell.

6. I’m not sure how I feel about this 2 and 5:30 starting times of games. I mean it is Sunday and all. Am I supposed to drink during these? Or not? I’m confused. My NFL equilibrium is jacked up.

That about sums it up.

Oh, I’d be remiss not to mention my very profitable 3-1 weekend that included hitting New England -10 and Jacksonville +14, a 3 team teaser, and both the over and Green Bay in that majestic Saturday game. Great times. NFL, we will be sad to see you go.

Let’s take a look at the picks for the conference championships, I’m 5-3 on my Heavy Soul picks and hopefully you dipshits are, too:

San Diego (+14) at NEW ENGLAND

These fucking Chargers are killing me. They are the bane of my existence. A blight on the NFL’s surface. But if the NFL teaches you one thing, it’s: If you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em. Well, I’m joining ‘em. And by ‘em, I mean the godforsaken San Diego squad with the douche bag QB, the overrated steroid freak linebacker, Norv Turner, the 11 year old Nate Kaeding, a guy who talks a lot named Igor, and no fewer than three injured superstars.
But Pete, isn’t New England the best team ever? Well, considering the Sports Guy inexplicably compared them ALREADY to the ’86 Celtics, the answer is obviously a resounding yes. But take a look at New England over the 2nd half of the year and then San Diego. I’m not convinced that New England has really been better at all. I’m not going to link to the stats for you, just don’t argue with me in the comments until you’ve inspected them. I won’t hear it.

We’re talking a better defense, an offense that is peaking, and a revenge factor that includes a 38-14 beating this year and a fluke playoff loss last year. I’m not calling for the outright upset, although it wouldn’t shock me, but San Diego gets the check here.

NE 28 SD 20

GREEN BAY (-7) vs. New York Football Giants

Last week, I told you the Packers were going to the Super Bowl. I don’t look so stupid now. Above, I told you about the Giants 8-1 road record. Impressive. Also, I must give props to Chris Berman for the term “New York Football Giants.” Sure, it’s probably overused, maybe even a cliché, but it’s still fantastic.

It’s the NFL, and something’s gotta give. I just checked, and exactly none of the Giants’ road wins came in -20 windchills, and although the Pack got schallacked (I have no idea how to spell the word, even though I say it all the time) in Chicago in awful conditions, I like their running game, I like Favre, and this has all the makings of a magical run.

I cannot define “magical run” but much like Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart, “I know it when I see it.” The rules of gambling explicitly state that when a team appears on the cusp of a magical run, and they are giving a touchdown or less at home on frozen tundra against a team that features a weenie for a QB and a secondary that I’m pretty sure Deion Sanders could still play for, you take them. I also humbly feel that there is some value in the over here, but I do not know if I will pick it.

Green Bay 31 NYFG 17

Enjoy the games, and feel free to agree with me in the comments.

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Thursday, January 17, 2008

"Paint The White House Black" (c) George Clinton; Some White Dude In Colorado

I don't know if anyone saw this story today (it was linked up on Drudge), but at some fancy fund raiser in Colorado honoring CU's president Hank Brown*, a Greeley businessman--who was introducing Brown and sitting with Governor Bill Ritter--was reading "joke telegrams," and mentioned one was from the White House. He then said:

"They're going to have to change the name of that building if Obama's elected."

The reactions were pretty predictable:

-"I gasped," said Gov. Bill Ritter.
-"I think it was uncalled for and atrocious," said U.S. Sen. Ken Salazar, who was also in attendance.
-"All that I can say about that is that it was unfortunate and most inappropriate," said Albert Yates, a former president of Colorado State University, who is black. "Even though Bill Farr is a friend, there's just no way to defend what he said.

So my question is...was that comment really that offensive? I mean, it clearly was offensive from a comedy standpoint. It's not funny.

But is it really "atrocious?" I mean, Obama is black, right? And it's called The White House. Is it really that stunning to point out that nothing but white men have run said house?

I don't know...it just seems like some pretty alarmist P.C. reactions to me. Is it just because it's from some white rancher that said it (that's rhetorical; I know that is exactly why)?

Say what you think in the comments. Maybe I'm way off here...let me know.

*Is the name "Hank" pretty hilarious for a University president? Especially a University who tries to act awfully pretentious? I mean, isn't Hank a shift manager at a foundry somewhere? At least NU's president goes by Harvey, I'm sure in honor of noted superhero attorney Harvey Birdman.

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In Billy I Trust?

It's official: the firesale is on in Oakland. Old news.

Breaking news: I'm kinda ok with it all.

Yes, the All-Star game starter and ace of the team, Dan Haren is now in Phoenix. Fan favorite Nick Swisher is gone, too. Have fun with him, Napa. For good measure, the oft-injured, but undeniable clubhouse leader, Mark Kotsay was traded to Hotlanta. EZT, congrats on the acquisition.

Don't cry for me baseball fans. I've seen this whole thing before. Lots of times. Mark McGwire, Jason Isringhausen, Keith Foulke, Miguel Tejada, Johnny Damon, Jermaine Dye, Jason Giambi, Ramon Hernandez, Tim Hudson, Mark Mulder, Barry Zito, and now these guys. No worries. I'm used to it.

This works out quite nicely, actually. I like being the underdog. No expectations. Steal a couple from the Angels here and there. This team is going to shape up into a scrappy bunch of SOBs. Blue collar. Blue Ribbon.

Here's why:

C, Kurt Suzuki. I absolutely love this dude. Imagine Shane Komine circa 2001. Now put that same competitiveness behind the plate. Dude is sick defensively and unlike most prospects, he has gone from minus power in the minors to showing a decent amount of pop in his 70 games last season.

1B, Daric Barton. Can absolutely rake the ball. Came over in the Mulder trade. Was a catcher in the minors. Is the definitive reason Nick Swisher was expendable. Reminds me of the Yankee first baseman in Major League. Will be a clubhouse and fan favorite.

2B, Mark Ellis. A rich man's David Eckstein. From Rapid City. Set the fielding percentage record for AL second basemen two seasons ago. Was robbed of the Gold Glove. Solid vet.

SS, Bobby Crosby. Bing's grandson (I may need to fact check that, but I want it to be true). Was a Dirtbag at Long Beach State. Cannot stay healthy. Likely to be the next traded to make way for Cliff Pennington. And I don't think I'm alone in saying that there needs to be a strong resurgence in the popularity of the name Cliff.

3B, Eric Chavez. I have his autograph. He likes younger women. He wins Gold Gloves and underachieves. Still love the guy.

OF, Travis Buck. ASU CWS hero who needs a haircut but shouldn't get one. Runs into walls like he's in one of those inflatable carnival castles.

P, Joe Blanton. Kentucky kid and grad who would rather arm wrestle you than strike you out. Eats as many innings as he does White Castle sliders. Speaking of sliders, his isn't too bad either. Firy sombitch.

DH, Dan Johnson. He went to Nebraska. After last season, that's about the only reason I can love him. Am glad he did not get traded though.

OF, Javier Herrera. I know nothing about this kid except that he is The Juevos. That is, The Balls. 7-tool player. What are the other two, says you? I'm glad you asked. Ball movement and court vision. Don't you ever underestimate those two. It's a shame they aren't more recognized.

Reason to worry:

CF, Chris Denorfia. What. The. Fuck? Chris Denorfia? Really? REALLY? Billy Beane, you couldn't find anyone else to play centerfield? What's Jeff Leise doing? Hell, what's Ryan Hildebrand doing? 2007 stats: DNP. Did not play due to Tommy John surgery. And I was just going to laud him for being 2006 Baseball America's best minor league defensive outfielder. I wonder if Rickey Henderson would come back if I asked him.

So, we got a bunch of talented young arms. Yippee. It was a much needed boost to the farm system. Now we can get back to being the American League Montreal Expos! Let's Go Green!

Caption This....

Saw this on Distant Replays--on sale for only $31!--and decided to leave it to the snarkiness of the contributors here to caption the picture.

I'll try mine:

"Hey Dusty, remember when you ruined my career? That was fun."

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Polka In Nebraska Re-Post

I guess that link I put from the NY Times about Polka in Nebraska didn't work.

Here's one that does.

It's a cool video--I've actually seen the polka group that is featured in this. Anyways, it's about 3 1/2 minutes long. Check it out.

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Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Celebrity look alikes

What is it with old ladies? For the first time in a couple of years, a not quite elderly lady told me that I looked like the wife and unborn child murderer Scott Peterson. I had a more understanding view of the situation when the schmuck was in the daily media, but in 2008? Come on.

"Who does everyone tell you you look like?" she said sweetly.

"Ralph Nader."

"No, really. Who do they say?"

"I'm really not sure. Who do you think I look like?"

"Scott Peterson. You know, the guy who killed his pregnant wife and threw them in the ocean."

"I'm familiar with the story."

(Grabbing the customer next to her) "Don't you think he looks like Scott Peterson? Give him a haircut and put a goatee on him and he's a look alike."

"I could see that," the other lady said. "And that's not a good thing."

Troubling indeed. So in the spirit of misery loving company, please help me feel better by telling me some horror stories of your celebrity look alike encounters.

My Back Hurts, By The Way...

...from carrying this blog.

Come on, no one can even comment?

Ha Ha..Astro Fan

Congress wants Tejada investigated

Asks Justice Department to find whether SS lied

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Tom Brady Retiring?

You be the judge...seems somewhat legit (the story, that is). I don't know that I buy it, though.

This comes from Kissing Suzy Kolber.

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Spring Game

Reportedly Nebraska is looking to have the Spring Game on April 19th...at 6pm!

Sweet sassy molassey, a night game in the spring! I've said it before, and I'll say it again: Tom Osborne just gets it.

I think this would be a great time to introduce "It's A Very Heavy Soul Tailgate, Spring Ed." npgage, deucey, MIB, pete--plan on being there. We might even sell some Nebraska Nation t-shirts.

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Sounds Like Lucky Is Sticking Around...

**UPDATE** NU Sports Information released this statement from Marlon Lucky:

“I am excited to return to Nebraska for my senior season and play for Coach Pelini. I know he is committed to winning and returning this program to the elite of college football, and I want to be here to help out with that.

“Another year here will also allow me to continue to pursue my college degree and enjoy the experience of playing football at Nebraska. I also know that another year can only benefit me as a player and help me become a more complete back to prepare for the next level.”

It was reported on Huskers Illustrated last night that "new" commit Collins Okafor mentioned yesterday after he re-committed that Marlon Lucky was his host last weekend, and that Lucky said he is sticking around for his senior year. It was also reported that he was at the team meeting Sunday night, and is enrolled as a full-time student at NU.

I think this is a very smart move. I think he finally showed the last half of the season that he can be a really good running back, and sticking around this season is only going to help him--particularly with all the running backs in the draft this year.

So, one more weapon that will still be around in 2008. I know I'm Mr. Sunshine a lot, but I swear that Nebraska is going to be really good next year. I already can't wait.

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Monday, January 14, 2008

Collins Okafor Is Attending...


I'm pretty surprised, to be honest. Especially since Stanford's coaches were at Westside this morning.

Good stuff!

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Should They Really Be Surprised?

Apparently Joke Noah has been suspended two games...BY HIS TEAMMATES.

"I understand frustrations with coaches," Ben Wallace said. "But you can never take it to that level where you overstep the coach-player relationship and talk to a grown man like that. I might not like you as a coach, but I have to respect you as a man.

"We have to be responsible for each other. We're together all the time. We feel we're becoming a close-knit group and a family-type atmosphere. It's up to us to hold everybody accountable for his own actions."

He apparently lit into an assistant pretty good at practice. Also, he apparently is late to everything. Oh, and he is also reportedly a douche bag. Actually, that's not reportedly, that's just fact from watching his ridiculous ass for 4 years in the SEC.

This pick is becoming more insane by the second. I think everyone thought John Paxson should've traded down and gotten a lot more value as this draft was not real solid after the first 5 picks. I think that everyone was right. I cannot think of one person who thought this was a good move. I was hoping that I (and everyone in Chicago) had Noah wrong, and he would be a big part of a push for the Eastern Conference Title this year.

Yeah...not so much the case, apparently. Ugg.

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One More Link...Mike & Mike Roast

I love Awful Announcing. And I love this report from the Mike & Mike "Roast." In particular, this line from Eddie Griffin:

"I kind of know my career is over when I'm hired to roast two white guys I never f**king heard of."

That is hilarious.

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Sunday, January 13, 2008

Sunday Night Links

I wanted to link up where you can get a new Wilco podcast--video taken from their latest appearance on Austin City Limits--and then I thought "hey, we could copy many other columns and blogs and do a weekly links post!" So let's try it out.

--Like I mentioned above, a new Wilco podcast is up. Get it. In fact, get all of them, because they are among the best free content you can find on the internets anywhere.

--Keeping on the podcasting theme, check out The Liberators. These guys are two very successful guys who really believe in the libertarian philosophy, plus it is as snarky and funny political talk show as you'll find. And while looking at their homepage may look like it is some crazy conservative page, because of the pictures and descriptions of the podcasts. Don't be fooled, though--they are equal-opportunity haters, referring to the Republican and Democrat parties as "The War Party" or "Republocrats." Good stuff. I'll go ahead and link this episode in particular, as they talk in-depth about the Rosenblatt vs. new stadium issue where they frequently reference a "Mike from Omaha." I wonder who that is?

--Golden Globe winners. It's all bullshit, because if The Wire isn't nominated for best TV Drama, these people have no sense of what's good anyways, does it?

--An article about how the Husker football coaches offices are arranged. Yes, I realize how ridiculous this is. Only in Nebraska...

--Speaking of the Huskers, it seems like Dave Rimington isn't doing much to quiet speculation that he may be the guy to take over for T.O. in two years, is he?

--OK, last thing on the Huskers: here is a list of prospects that were in Lincoln this weekend from the Journal-Star's "Life In The Red" blog. I personally think it is a really good blog, particularly for a newspaper--they let a lot of good bits of info sneak through there, and I think were clearly the leaders in covering the Husker coaching search. Apparently it doesn't hurt newspapers to embrace the internet (*ahem,* Omaha World-Herald, *ahem.*).

--On the political front, (Brother) Jon Bruning apparently is going to be state GOP chair for Mike Huckabee. Politics will make a guy do just about anything, regardless of what he actually believes, won't they? I'm really surprised by this one.

**Off the subject, I'm watching the "Nebraska Football Show." I do NOT think this is coincidental. Coach Bo and T.O. aren't screwing around when they say that they're going to make this about "Nebraska" again, are they?

--More sports: I kind of enjoy Darren Rovell's sports business site on CNBC. He seems pretty arrogant and cocky on TV, but whatever. Sports business is for true business and sports dorks, and that is good for me.

--The Sporting News' blog site has been getting a lot of ink lately, and I think for good reason. It seems to be really solid.

--So this Cloverfield movie is apparently pretty good. I'm guessing this write-up is probably correct.

--This is pretty cool--a graphic, um, graph of the history of the Wu-Tang Clan.

--Whoa, this is pretty cool: an "audio slideshow" (what in the fuck does that even mean?) from the NY Times about Nebraskan Polka.

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Friday, January 11, 2008

Wait a minute...I have to go to Manhattan, Kansas for this?

It appears so, and so it is: I'm going to Manhattan, KS Monday, February 4th. It makes my stomach turn thinking about this. However, it's worth it, friends:

"Will Ferrell will host a nationwide college comedy tour featuring rising stars. Joining Ferrell for the trek are up-and-comers Zach Galifianakis, Demetri Martin and Nick Swardson. Information on tickets and onsale dates is available at FunnyorDie.com."

Holy crap. Zach Galifianakis and Demetri Martin? I'd go to Manhattan just for them. Then there's the "throw-in" of Will Ferrell being there. Done and done.

So, who's in?

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Party To Win

So I was going to do a post about the "REAL ID" system coming into effect to a state near you in 2011 ("It's only to keep the terrorists and those terrible illegal aliens out! We're doing it for your safety! Oh, and to know everything about you and everything you do. But mainly it's for the terrorists!").

However, it's Friday, and that's a bit heavy. So, stolen from Exit 177, who linked up to it, let's learn how to "Party To Win," from Sir Michael Ian Black:

"You know that song "Everybody's Workin' for the Weekend?" That's my theme song. All week I've got my nose to the grindstone, but from Friday at 5:01 pm until Sunday at 8:59 am, I am officially "on swerve." Nobody parties with more intensity or focus than me. For some people, partying is what you do to unwind. Not me. For me, parties are my creative outlet. Parties, for me, are serious fun.

How do I party?

With exuberance.

With ferocity.

With a fierce desire to win.

What does it mean to "win" at a party? It means having the BEST time, eating the MOST canapes, throwing up the MOST throw-up. It means showing up alone, but going home with the HOTTEST girl who is the LEAST conscious. THAT'S how you win.

This was my weekend:

After work on Friday, I put on my Axe body spray and headed out into the night. This was a warm-up foray into the dark heart of party. I started at TGIFs. "Party of one?" the hostess asked. "I don't plan on partying for one very long," I responded. Within minutes, the hostess and her two smokin' friends were sharing a heapin' plate of potato skins with me and alternately downing copious amounts of peach liqueur. Potato skins and peach liqueur? Maybe it's not a combination you're familiar with. That's because it's expert level partying. The kind they do on the Greek island of Mekonos. And trust me, once you've gone Greek, you don't look back. Unless it's her back you're looking at while you're drilling her and her two friends in the employee's break room at the TGIF, which is what I was doing about twenty minutes after I arrived.

I strolled out there after paying nothing but getting everything in return. The night was still young, so I drove over to Applebee's to see what was cooking over there. Turns out A LOT! The game was on, and I'm not talking about the football on TV. I met a couple of honeys who had a taste for the finer things in life. Like nachos and my dick.

After Applebee's, it was over to Bennigans for some late night shenanigans. At this point, I was no longer hungry, but my whistle needed some wetting. I ordered a couple shots of Jaegy, and then did my thing with a divorcee who was looking for a little do-re-mi. We hit the dance floor HARD. Creed was on the stereo, and I got a little crazy when Scott Stapp told me to take it higher. I did. Higher, longer, and harder. It was all I could do to keep it in my pants. So I didn't. I twirled it around like a baton and let the majorettes fight over it. Which they did. ALL. NIGHT. LONG. T'wasesome! (Shorthand word I invented for "It was awesome.")

Saturday was pretty much a repeat of Friday. Only instead of TGIF, the Bee, and Benny G's, it was Houlihans, The Cheesecake Factory, and Pizzeria Uno. And instead of hostesses, honeys and a divorcee, it was a kindergarten teacher, a nun, and some dude named Larry. Plus a round of mini-golf with the kid I mentor. And that was just the morning. The afternoon and evening were even SICKER. Lunch was at the Olve Garden where I got my breadstick dipped in a juicy dish of olive oil. Followed by a double order of tiramisu (in this case, not a euphemism for sex), topped off with a cordial consisting of one part brandy, one part peppermint schnapps, three parts black chick riding my cock. Then it was on to Planet Hollywood for my weekly Saturday night blowout.

Hollywood memorabilia competed with my red sequined jumpsuit for attention. I don't need to tell you who won, but I will anyway. I did. I won. It's a good thing co-founders Sly Stallone, Bruce Willis, and Arnold Schwarzenegger weren't in attendance at this particular PH at the Cherry Hill Mall because their stars would have dimmed considerably next to my own galactic luminescence. The Planet spun a little groovier that night, let me tell you. If you've never done it on top of Herbie the Love Bug, you don't know what it means to live. (Unfortunately, I found out later in the week that I contracted my own "love bug" that night. Nothing a strong course of antibiotics won't fix.) I didn't sign any autographs that night, but I definitely made my mark. All over Harry Potter's cape.

Sunday was just a blur. IHOP, Chuck E. Cheese, Dave and Buster's, the library, the Hard Rock Cafe, Perkins, my mom's house, Sea World, The Ground Round, Larry's house for a little blow, Wrigley Field, your mom's house, the Space Needle, every brew pub in the world, outer space, Houlihans again, and of course, what weekend would be complete without a stop at Hooters?

A lot of people think Hooter's best days are behind it. Not me. The brew is still cold, the wings are still hot, and the ass is still young and fat. There's a misconception that there aren't any fat ass Hooters girls. Wrong. And those are the ones you want to target. The best-looking Hooters girls know they're the best-looking ones, but the fat assed ones need a little reassurance that they deserve to wear the mantle. So you compliment them. You butter them up. You let them know that you came for the burgers but you're staying for their muffin. Then you go in for the kill. (Not literally, unless that's your thing. Partiers don't judge other partiers.) My server was named Patty. Patty the Fatty. Did I make that Patty melt? You know it.

The weekend ended at exactly 8:59 am, at my desk, in my cubicle, a spreadsheet in front of me. Believe me, I did a lot of spreading on a lot of sheets that weekend. And a lot of thinking. Thinking about how incredible it is to live in a country where you can live free and party to win. The weeks might be tedious. After all, I can only save so many refugees doing my job at the U.N., but the weekends? T'wasome."

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Pete's NFL Picks: Divisional Edition

It's 6:15 AM on Friday and I'm coming to you live from my Des Moines penthouse. In a week that has seen its last football gambling opportunity come on Monday (banged LSU and the over) I could hardly contain myself and am now sitting here at 6:15 AM writing up my NFL picks.

Since I just realized Brent Musburger is still calling college hoops for ESPN last night, I am honoring him and the wonderful memories of watching CBS' "NFL Today" with my grandpa in '86, '87, or '88. This pivotal moment was when I first had cognitive recognition of the dark art of the point spread. Brent (if you watch him during any game he makes at least 3 not-so-thinly-veiled references to gambling) and Jimmy the Greek would devolve any salient point that Irv Cross (the 3rd wheel) would make into a gambling discussion.

Then, my grandpa would ask me, at the tender age of 7, "Pete, do you think the Jets can beat the Dolphins today?"

Pete: "Sure, grandpa, the Dolphins suck on the road and if you stop John Offerdahl, the rest of their defense blows. Can I have some more Tang?"

Grandpa: "Thelma, get the kid some more Tang, and make it a real drink this time. Now, Pete, if the Jets had to beat the Dolphins by 5 points, do you think they could do it?"

Pete: "Anyone knows that margin of victory is seldom between 3 and 7 points, and even more rare between 4 and 6, so that means the Jets are set to cut up the Dolphins like GI Joe to Cobra."

And so on. So, for this reason alone, I am dedicating these picks to the venerable Brent Musberger and the NFL Today show of the 1980s.

First, let's recap last week. My picks were 1-2-1, but like the savvy sumbitch I am I waited and got the Steelers at 3 and covered. So I am saying 2-2 on the weekend. Whatever, not bad, not great. I wish Monte Kiffin would have called me and informed me that they would not be putting a pass rush on Eli Manning whatsoever, but he didn't. Anyway, we are 2-2, and on to the picks:

GREEN BAY (-9) over Seattle

Lots of big spreads this week. That's because the home team usually pisspounds the road team coming off of a playoff game last week. Although I believe the dogs covered every spread last year in these games (I just checked, and yes, they did). I expect Green Bay to roll this week. Seattle is a quintessential bridesmaid team, they make the playoffs every year, but never actually win the Super Bowl. I don't like their running game and I think Green Bay is running on them all day.

I think this Green Bay team is like a puppy and an electric fence. They should be scared, but they are too young and stupid to know any better and just run right through anyway. And while they might get shocked initially, they just keep on going. And Brett Favre has been awesome this year. And their D is pretty good. And they can run the ball. And they have a really good kicker. I'm thinking Super Bowl. Green Bay 27, Seattle 17

Jacksonville (+13.5) at NEW ENGLAND

I think Jax matches up well this year (oh, and thanks for the $40, rubes, you know who you are) against New England. They should run the ball with MoJo (one of my Top 3 NFL players) and Freddie Taylor.

New England should win this game, but if they win by 10, or even 13, that is a convincing win, but it won't get them the cover. In the playoffs, it's not about covering, it's about winning. If you get these kind of points and Phil Rivers isn't involved, you take them. I look for a final of about NE 35 Jax 24. Take it to the bank.

INDY (-9) vs. San Diego

I hate the Chargers. There, it's out in the open. I do not think they are a good football team. This is probably my favorite game of the weekend. You take a banged up San Diego team against an Indy team that is rested and has been ignored basically all year due to the Patriots.

Manning will come out early, and often, and light up the Chargers. The Chargers either won't have Gates or he will be a shadow of his former self. If the Colts can keep LT from single handedly destroying them, and I will bet you a Bob Sanders they can, this one won't be close. I think it'll be Indy 31, SD 13.

NY Giants (+7.5) at DALLAS

This is a ridiculous game. I don't really trust either of these teams, and no, I don't care that Tony Romo went to Mexico. Who the hell could blame him for that? Her creep dad is what concerns me. That guy is nuts. He's like a gymnastics coach only weirder.

Anyway, the Giants are a better road team than a home team and the Cowboys have been shaky. This is where we will see the value of Parcells. If he was still at the helm, this ship would be righted. Wade Phillips probably spent the last two weeks playing cribbage against Dick Vermeil. I'm just not buying that this team has the leadership to get through the playoffs. I'm thinking outright upset.

NYG 21, Dal 20

Enjoy the games, everyone. EZT: Call me for an in-depth discussion. Until next week...

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Thursday, January 10, 2008

The NBA: Where The Jazz Are Enjoyable To Watch Happens (?????)

Yeah, you read that right. I'm watching the Suns at Jazz right now, and it's true: the Jazz are fun to watch.

*ducks for lightning surly to strike at any moment*

I mean, I think there were 3 out of 5 times down the floor that alley oops occurred, and two of them were by Utah.

I've been preaching it the past few months, kids--the NBA is fun to watch again. If you can sit down and watch a game that Utah is part of, and you ACTUALLY ENJOY WHAT YOU'RE SEEING, you've got to feel pretty good about the state of the Association.

Also--and this has been said enough by various media types that it is basically trendy to say this now--but the TNT studio show is as good of TV is there is around these days period (let alone with the writer's strike going on). It is so damned good, and Barkley is so funny it is unbelievable. Every show he does a tie-in with those T-Mobile commercials with D. Wade concerning a team that they're covering that night. Tonight, they did a live "look in" of the Kings/Grizzlies game (to which he said "if you love baaaad basketball, this game is for you"), and he did his "Fave 5 Sacramento Kings," and the list was:

Chris Webber
Vlade Divac
Mitch Richmond
Reggie Theus
Doug Christie's Wife

I love Charles Barkley.

There's still room on the bandwagon, boys! Hop on!

(By the way, 1993 Michael Jordan could appear via a time machine in a Utah Jazz jersey and I would still hate the Jazz. Just wanted to be clear that I am not advocating people become Jazz fans here--rather, I'm pointing out how incredible an occurrence this is. It doesn't mean I'm happy about it.)

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Hasn't Anyone Seen Shawshank?

So two prisoners escaped from a New Jersey jail by digging through the wall of the jail cell and then covering the hole with posters of scantily clad women. They left a note thanking a prison guard for the tools necessary to complete the daring escape. That prison guard then committed suicide before he could talk with authorities. One of the prisoners was caught in Mexico, hiding out in a $10 a day hotel.

How surreal is this?!? The only thing missing is that the two should be named Andy Dufresne and Ellis Redding and they both made it all the way to the Pacific. This has to be the weirdest story I've heard of in a long time. How could a jail facility not think to look behind posters? Hasn't everybody seen The Shawshank Redemption? I feel bad for the family and friends of the prison guard who took his own life, but this story is just way too strange in the way it coincides with one of the best movies of all time.

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I knew our coach...

...would be good for a few of these a year.

It just seems strange having a coach that you might run into at a bar every once in awhile. Comforting.

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Wednesday, January 09, 2008

3:10 To Yuma

Buy it. Watch it. Be happy.

This is a great movie. Christian Bale brings it, as usual (by the way, when it's all said and done, I think Bale will be one of the greatest actors of our generation). Russell Crowe is the perfect bad guy with a (very) soft side to him. And they stay pretty true to the original movie.

That's it. No time nor motivation to do a full "review," other than it kicks ass and you should watch it.

Monday, January 07, 2008

Heads Up, MIB

OK, full disclosure: I cannot imagine getting robbed. I am guessing that it would be a very empty feeling, and I cannot even begin to imagine how Mrs. GA Hill would react (actually, I do: we'd have to move).

However...would it be quite as bad if, when you encountered the robber creeping around in your kitchen, you saw it was A NINJA????

The Ninja Bandit got his nickname after an earlier victim said the intruder wielded a set of nunchucks when they scuffled in the homeowner's kitchen in September. Phil Chiolo told CBS 2 HD "there, standing, facing me was a ninja; a guy dressed up as a ninja."
Holy shit. And it's in Staten Island! I simply cannot believe that this story doesn't end with "police do have suspects in custody. The RZA, 35, The GZA, 37, and Raekwon, 33, were questioned last evening, but were released after posting bail."

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Saturday, January 05, 2008

Holy shit! Finally.

At least some good is coming out of this craptastic Seattle/Redskins game.

The goodness is the return of the 99 cent double stack at Wendy's. This was a key component of lunch for most of my adolescence, and I welcome its return with open arms.

(Cue "Wind Beneath By My Wings)

As I sit here with Hales, Mayfield, and The Brotha, a miniature party broke out filled with jubilant reminiscing about this magical, and economical, cheeseburger.

So welcome back Double Stack, from Heavy Soul.

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Friday, January 04, 2008

Reason Number....Oh The Hell With It

I simply cannot keep track of what number we're on regarding "why ESPN sucks," but this one may take the cake.

MIB and I were talking the other day when ESPN/ABC announced that Barry Sanders was the second-greatest college football player of all time. We both reasoned--pretty rationally, regardless of our fan affiliation--that since Tommy Frazier was not on the list yet, he was going to get the credit he deserves, and wear the crown of the greatest college football player of all time.

Welp, we were wrong. They named the Galloping Ghost Red Grange as the greatest player of all time.

I guess it makes sense that Tommy Frazier wasn't on the list. I mean, he only was the MVP in three straight National Championship games, winning two of them in a row. I guess the fact that Vince Young won one against the greatest team in the history of team sports USC deserved to be on the list more than Tommy.

Mike Rozier wasn't on there, either. Which also makes sense, seeing he only had--according to Sports Illustrated--"maybe the best senior year ever" en route to his Heisman Trophy.

I suppose that this was ESPN's payback to Nebraska for having the nerve to have voted for their teams in that ridiculous "Greatest Teams Tournament" or whatever that was.

Whatever, I guess. If ESPN wants to reduce their credibility as the self-proclaimed "World Wide Leader In Sports" one silly Top 25 list at a time, so be it. Because the fact is that anyone that knows anything about college football knows that the 1995 Huskers belong in any conversation regarding the greatest teams of all time, and Tommy Touchdown Frazier is, by God, one of the greatest college football players ever. Period.

Suck it, ESPN.

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Pete's NFL Picks

It's that time of year again, and there is nothing quite like riding a hot streak into the playoffs.

That's right, I have not lost a bet in 2008. After suffering my last setback (congrats EZT) with Clemson on New Year's Eve, I went 3-0 on New Year's Day, then hit West Virginia and Kansas the last two nights. Let's keep this train-a-rollin', folks. On to the picks:

SEATTLE (-4) over Washington

The Seahawks get the check here (that's what Hank Goldberg always says) even though I am rooting for the Redskins. I love Joe Gibbs and think he is a fantastic coach, but I can't back Todd Collins on the road against the toughest crowd in the NFC. I also like the under here. The Seahawks have mailed it in the last few weeks but I like their playoff experience at home against a Redskins team that had to play as hard as they could the last month just to get here. I don't love this play however and may only take the under.

PITTSBURGH (+2) over Jacksonville

Why? Because this has the makings of a classic trap game. Look at that line again. They are begging you to take Jacksonville. Personally, I will take the more playoff experienced team, with the better, more experienced QB, at home on a crappy field, with the raucous crowd. I'm loading up on this game, and going contrarian and fading the public. Sorry Mayfield.

TAMPA BAY (-2.5) over NY Giants

I know the Giants are the popular pick here but Tampa is simply a better team overall. Garcia doesn't take sacks, which will neutralize the G-Men pass rush and Earnest Graham is going to have a big day. Tampa does concern me by not having a lot of explosiveness if they aren't getting the ball to Galloway, which they aren't. If they fall behind, they won't come back. I also think Jacobs will have a big game, but we all know Eli is turning the ball over, it's just a question of when, and to what level of devestation. Again, I really like this play.

Tennessee (+9) over SAN DIEGO

I waffled on this game, but I simply had to decide that Norv Turner and Philip Rivers cannot cover 9 points. By the way, if Kerry Collins starts, that means that both he and Todd Collins will be starting NFL playoff games. I don't know if this can even be processed by my brain. I also disagree that this is better for the Titans, I mean we're talking about Kerry Collins here. I have no idea what's going to happen here. The Sports Guy said that the Titans are basically a worse San Diego, and he's right. Jeff Fisher is smart though, and maybe he can come up with something. If I am having a good week I may not even play this one. Or just play the under. Basically, I picked Tennessee but the last paragraph is fairly pro San Diego. Whatever.

Good luck to all, and we will be back next week regardless with the divisional games. Oh, and I will be watching these somewhere with bar food if anyone cares to join me.

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Caucus Results/Analysis

After inundating myself with at least four hours of caucus coverage last night both on CNN and local TV, all while winning a wager on the Kansas Jayhawks, here is my breakdown of what happened last night in Iowa:


Theme: Hope > experience. Clearly the caucusers (?) chose the more optimistic, inspiring tone of the Obama campaign over the experience-themed Hillary campaign. Once I saw the turnout, I pretty much figured it is going this way. Obama is really getting young people and independents out in droves, and it showed last night. Clinton better hope this is a fluke, but with New Hampshire only 5 days away, I'm not sure that she can turn it around.

Loser: Clinton. I still think she can win New Hampshire, but with a gun to my head I would put my money on Obama at this point. If she loses that and then loses South Carolina (which would theoretically be her worst state) it's probably over. She spent a lot in Iowa and to get third is a kick to the groin (yes, I know, it was intentional).

Treading water: John Edwards. His 2nd place was respectable, and I don't think anyone would have thought he could beat Hillary a month ago, but this was the basket containing all of his eggs, and I think he only goes down from here.

Out: Biden and Dodd. The loss of Biden hurts because he is so ideologically solid on the issues and makes people bring it in debates. Dodd had the firefighters, and I enjoy the show Rescue Me.


Theme: Populism dominates. Clearly Huckabee rocked Iowa with a combination of wacko evangelicalism and liberal economics. While this was clearly a huge win and will give his campaign some much needed money, he gets his ass-kicked in New Hampshire because the Republicans there tend to be more libertarian than evangelical, and they won't be having it.

Loser: Romney and Thompson. Thompson is the laziest politician in the history of the United States, even ahead of the 350lb William Howard Taft. He's mailing it in and it shows. I can't stand this guy's sense of entitlement and I just hope he gets his ass kicked everywhere. Romney has literally been in Iowa for about a year, and he had to think he would win or only lose by 3-5% at worst. Well, he got his ass kicked. If McCain beats him in New Hampshire, he could join Edwards.

Treading Water: McCain. He really needs New Hampshire but he has to be happy that Romney isn't taking any momentum from Iowa back east.

Out: For all practical purposes, Ron Paul and Giuliani are done, taking much needed comedy from the Republican race with them.

(Stay tuned for my Wild Card NFL picks this afternoon)

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Thursday, January 03, 2008

Two nights at Barrett’s

Here are a few pictures from two hard drinking nights at Barrett's. I am pretty sure this first photo was taken fairly early in the evening. I only say that due to the fact that you can almost see the MIB's eyes.

Crowd Shot

The before . . .look at the gangs confidence prior to going to battle

And after . . . Editors Note – Approximately two hours after this photo was taken, yours truly decided to relieve himself in the misses’ laundry basket. . .Merry Christmas, and I am told you always hurt the ones you love.

Here is one of the attempted tight roll come back. Gage I can not thank you enough for the socks and tie

Now on to New Years Eve

I pretty sure that we can all agree that Mayfield Sucks

There were a number of pictures to which I thought were A) couple shots or B) not suitable for the internets given the persons occupation, so if you would like to see some more, send me a email, and I will have the talented better half get you hooked up.

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

College Football and i-Pod's

So yesterday's BCS bowls could be best described as lackluster. The worst part is that everybody was predicting the results. USC was clearly a better team than Illinois and ditto for Georgia over Hawaii. I understand that those matchups fall into what the BCS is trying to do: combine the old school bowl matchups with the new BCS rules that require a non-BCS school to be in a BCS bowl if it is ranked 12th or higher. But can't the bowls make the matchups a little bit more legitimate? I know the Rose Bowl has historically been between the Pac 10 and the Big 10, but shouldn't they be more interested in the product they're putting on the field than the history of the bowl game? Wouldn't you have rather watched a USC-Georgia matchup and an Illinois-Hawaii game? All that really got accomplished by these games is that two schools go home humiliated and we could be looking at another year with a split national title (probably not because every two loss team looks like they should be the national champion, even Missouri...puke/cringe). The bowl games should look to making the matchups more even so that we don't have to watch boring one sided games like those that were on yesterday.

i-Pod Touch: A user's review

So Kourt got me an i-Pod touch for Christmas this year and I'm still mixed on my feelings for the new piece of technology. I love being able to download music directly to the i-Pod and being able to check the internet in any place with wi-fi. Its also pretty awesome for watching my Battlestar Galactica and South Park re-runs on widescreen.

If you want one simply for listening to music, get the classic i-Pod. The Touch is only available in 8 and 16 gig models, which would be alright if you didn't have over 40 gigs of music, tv shows, and movies. The Touch also gets to be a pain in the ass when you're sorting through trying to find stuff. You're finger will accidently go a little too far and you'll be listening to that Teddy Bears album you downloaded when you were drunk two years ago and then its an additional pain to back to what you really wanted to listen to.

I'm sure half of the problems will sort themselves out as I get more aclimated to the Touch's functionality. The lack of hard drive space will probably be resolved in the next generation of the Touch (sucks to be me). Overall I would give the i-Pod Touch a four out of five.

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The Planet gets some headlines

This is classic...

The Onion

Tuesday, January 01, 2008


On a slow night watching a dreadful football game (uh, hey Hawai'i--you guys know that you're supposed to be playing right now, don't you? Feel free to participate...) recovering from a pretty rough night (thanks everybody for coming), I happened upon this idea on The Hold Steady's message board:

Everyone take their iPods and hit shuffle, and post the first 10 tracks that come up. Explain each track if you want (any kind of significance, funny story that goes along with it, etc.). Here we go:

1. "Watermelon," Todd Barry. A funny bit about a guy wearing a Yarmulke...that looks like a slice of watermelon. Funny.

2. "The New Kid (Live)," The Old 97's. I've never understood how a band that can at times kick so much ass come right back and suck the ass they kicked right back.

3. "Commonplace Streets," The Jayhawks.

4. "Keys To Your Love," The Rolling Stones.

5. "Real N**** Quotes," Common.

6. "Beale Street Blues," W.C. Handy

7. "Go It Alone," Beck

8. "Dear Mr. Man," Prince

9. "City on Fire," Big Head Todd and the Monsters

10. "Everything is Fair," A Tribe Called Quest

Not a bad list, although it is filled with songs of no real importance or significance, personally.

And I feel like, now that I'm thinking about it, we've done this before. If so, sorry for being repetitive.

UPDATE: OK, I'm doing it again, because I'm bored.

1. "Hold Steady Podcast," The Hold Steady (Craig Finn). This is awesome. Search for it on iTunes or on THS' website. It's free.

2. "Waste (Live)," Phish. I squarely blame npgage and his hard drive for Phish to always invade my shuffle.

3. "I Want You (She's So Heavy)," The Beatles.

4. "Paradise," Sade. It's my wife's, I swear!

5. "Lord Anthony," Belle & Sebastian. It's my wife's, I swear! (Just kidding, they can be pretty good, but boy, are they wussy!).

6. "Maybe I'm A Leo," Gov't Mule.

7. "Figaro," Madvillian.

8. "Black River," Amos Lee.

9. "No Blue Sky," The Thorns (or as pete and I like to say, "Matthew Sweet and those other guys.")

10. "Steam Engine," My Morning Jacket.

One more? OK!

1. "Complexity," The Roots. GREAT tune. Classic album.

2. "Lift Her Pull Her," Atmosphere.

3. "Soul Food," Goodie Mob. This literally is my wife's. It is weird how much girls from Westside love the Goodie Mob.

4. "The Good Times Are Killing Me," Modest Mouse.

5. "Perfect Timing," Mos Def.

6. "Greatest Love," Musiq.

7. "Walls Of The Cave," Phish. (goddamn it, npgage!)

8. "Pot Kettle Black," Wilco.

9. "Bones," Radiohead.

10. "E=MC2 (ft. Common)," J Dilla

OK, I'm tired of typing. Good night.

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