Thursday, November 30, 2006

Screw You, Starburst

If I may, please allow me to provide some evidence towards something of which I've long been suspicious; namely, Starburst is intentionally screwing people over by giving them more oranges and yellows (widely known to be inferior flavors) than reds and pinks. I just bought a $1.99 bag of Starbursts on my lunch break and the breakdown of fruit chews in said bag is as follows:

16 Orange
13 Yellow
7 Pink
6 Red

What kind of garbage is that?

Top 40 Concerts in Boston History

First of all, I'd like to apologize for the lack of activity here in Freeze Pop Land for the last few days. The three contributors to this space have, unfortunately, been very busy lately. In any event, here's an interesting link someone sent me recently to a Boston Phoenix feature on the 40 greatest concerts in Boston history:

Lot of shows I wish I could've seen in there. Dylan at Harvard Square. The Dead at UMass. J. Geils and Tom Petty on the Cape. Not too shabby. And I was only vaguely aware of the circumstances surrounding their #1 pick so that was interesting to read as well.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Another Tale From The Office

Recently overheard snippet of conversation between two middle-aged white guys from my office…

Man #1: “OK, that sounds good. I’m happy with that. Or, as Will Smith would say, I am jiggy with it.”

Man #2: (Heartily laughing) “Ha ha ha!”

#1: “One of my favorite lines from one of my favorite actors. He’s so funny.”

#2: “Yes, he is.”

#1: “You know what other line I like? When he says, ‘the difference between you and I is that I make this look gooood.”

#2: “Yup.”

#1: “…and he does.”

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Nothing On TV?

I just stumbled across a great thing that is only getting better. Peak TV shows full length television shows on their site. It is constantly growing and more videos are submitted every day. They have a ton of shows, but here are some of Machon's favorites:

24 (102 episodes)
Arrested Development (9 episodes)
Band of Brothers (22 episodes)
Heroes (every episode)
Lost (53 episodes)
Seinfeld (98 episodes)
Weeds (16 episodes)
The Wonder Years (33 episodes)

In addition to television shows the have movies, stand up, cartoons, anime, asian drama & movies, and the 2006 World Cup.


Saturday, November 25, 2006

Great Album Covers

A look at two of the better, more thoughtful album covers. One that capture the essence of teamwork, cooperation, balance, and trust. And another that shows us how electric an image can be:

The Playmates: at play with The Playmates

1. That is illegal. There is a 80% chance the penguin looking fellow on the back is going ass over tea kettle as soon as they hit 15 mph.

2. The guy driving the vespa certainly looks like he was dragged into this idea. He looks repulsed, scared, unsure, and kind of curious at the same time. I just spent 15 minutes in front of the mirror trying to replicate it, (the face, not the 3 man sandwich) and I can't do it.

3. The meat of the sandwich loves it. This is blatantly his concept. Look at his smirk and the eye brow twitch, he can barely contain himself. I wonder if he asked to be in the middle or it was the obvious position for him.

3a. Is it me, or does he look like the guy from MAD magazine.

3b. He really is putting a nice bear hug on the hopeless driver. He has his left hand wrapped firmly around his right wrist. If Sly Stallone could have adopted that hold in Cliffhanger, Hal Tucker would be spending the holidays with his girlfriend

Devastatin' Dave: Zip Zap Rap

1. The Turntable Slave? Was that really your best option? Besides the obvious cultural problems, it doesn't make any sense. Why would you want to be the turntable's slave? I always thought that a DJ was in total control over the turntable, thus being able to make records do things it would never do on its own.
2. Take an extra close look at those glasses. Pink rims, awesome stuff.
3. How many people still go with the one earring routine? I remember kids use to rock that look way back when, but I am hoping that left with Jellies and parachute pants.
4. I am not sure how to attack his clothing choices. I do know that it must take him 20 minutes to take off those pants.
5. Speaking of pants, is it necessary to put the second Zap there? What are you trying to say Dave?
6. Why is he giving us the double point? I don't want any part of what Dave is offering.

Bonus: Dave is still around. You can find some of his work here. Do yourself a favor and listen to "Westside Bronx". I have listened to it 5 times and have no idea why the hell it is called "Westside Bronx".

Here is some info on the man himself:
Basic Info
Age: 47
Gender: Male
Status: In A Relationship
Orientation: Straight
Religion: Christian - other
Zodiac: Pisces
Hometown: Los Angeles, California
Schools: John Muir/Laney College
Occupation: Jack of all trades.
Company: 2000 Devastating Records Unl.
Personal Info
Interests: Travel, Music, Spiritual things, UFO's.
Favorite Music: Funk
Favorite Movies: Batman, Bad Boys, Catwoman, Training Day, or anything with any of those actors/tresses in it.
Favorite TV: Fresh Prince of Belair
Favorite Book: The King James version of The Holy Bible
Favorite Drink: Koolaid, Beer, Alabama Slama, Scooby Snacks, Bailey's Irish Coffee, cognac.
Favorite Color: Green, Black, Blue, Red.
Favorite Quote: It ain't ova till the fat lady sings!

Few notes.
--You can't have four favorite colors pal, chose one and get on with it.
--His favorite book is The King James version of the Bible? Someone has to add him to the KJ's wiki page, along side Milton and Wordsworth.
--Occupation: Jack of all Trades. For some reason I am having trouble accepting that.
--If anyone can find a better list of favorite drinks, I will drop my pants and run around downtown Boston. Seriously, look at that...
--I wonder what type of spiritual things dave is talking about? All of them?
-- So Dave likes every movie that any of the actors from Batman, Bad Boys, Catwoman and Training Day have ever been in? That is a shit load of movies.

Thursday, November 23, 2006

A Very Swayze Thanksgiving

Who doesn't wonder what his holidays are like? I spend hours thinking about it....

* Think your family gatherings are crazy? Try spending a day with Patrick Swayze. The "Dirty Dancing" star dished to Allure: "Usually in the Swayze family, Thanksgiving is an opportunity to bring up the past and have big, big fights."

Road House-style fights, baby....

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Some Suggestions For The Boston Bruins Pro Shop

As lifelong Bruins, Hadley and I have talked about this on several occasions...the Bruins pro shop (whether we're talking about the physical store in North Station or the online store) really needs to start stepping up its game. As we speak the only two player-specific t-shirts I can find online are for Zdeno Chara and Brian Leetch. That's a problem. You want to buy an authentic Neely jersey? Good luck. The shop basically stocks Ray Bourque jerseys and....that's it. Well, that's bunk. So here are some suggestions to get things moving in the right direction...

1)Allow personalization on the jerseys for full price but give me a stable of 15-20 at all times for a slight discount. I love Ray Bourque but I don't want to see a sea of 77's when I go to a game. Let's spread it out among guys like this...

Big Bad Bruins Era

Lunchpail Athletic Club Era

The 80's

Something like that. Maybe have a wild card every month on sale. Like a Doug Keans jersey. Or a Charlie Simmer. Or Nevin Markwart. It would be infinitely cooler to see those jerseys around town than what I'm seeing right now.

2)I left current players out of the jersey discussion but I'll mention them here now in talking about t-shirts. Can someone explain to me why they don't sell a Bergeron t-shirt right now? Or a Kessel shirt? I mean, let's get on that. Bergeron, Kessel and Chara are basically your three marketable guys at this point. Market them.

3)Give me some DVDs. The DVD section of the online store doesn't haven't a single Bruins-specific product in it at the moment. Let's get the best of Bobby Orr on disc. Let's get Neely highlights on disc. Best fights. A DVD full of overtime goals. A 1970/1972 playoff box set. Something.

4)Finally, I don't care how long it takes you to find it or how much money has to be sunk into the project but somebody down there needs to track down "Who Dey Bruins" by Zip Rzeppa on vinyl and get that onto a CD pronto. I think I'd pay $50 for it at this point. For those of you that aren't familiar with Who Dey Bruins, it was a novelty (obviously) 45 that was produced for the '84 season and features lyrics like this (from memory)...

From the old historic Garden
Comes that black and gold machine
They're the mighty Boston Bruins
The finest in the league

They skate and move and pass and shoot
And always come to play
That tough aggressive, checking hockey
'Cause there is no better way

Who dey?
Who dey?
Who dey think gonna beat them Bruins?
Who dey?
Who dey?
Who dey think gonna beat them Bruins?

We've got Pederson and Middleton
For nifty moves each night
And the Crowders and MacTavish
Who know how to light the light

There's Luc and Krushelnyski
And Tom Fergus who can score
And McNabb and Stevie Kasper
And Dave Silk from down the shore

Nevin Markwart makes opponents
wonder how he got the puck
Captain Terry O. just lets 'em know
Today they're out of luck

You get the idea. You see, THAT is the kind of thing they should be selling.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Morneau's Parents Are Pissed

From: Newsletters []
Sent: Tuesday, November 21, 2006 2:31 PM
Re: Breaking Sports Alert: Mauer wins AL MVP

If the player isn't on the Sox or the Yanks, the Globe thinks they all look the same. Is that considered racist? This whole Kramer thing has me confused.

Monday, November 20, 2006

Rockin' Manhattan

So, as you know if you've been regularly following the action here at 10 Cent Freeze Pops, Hadley and I were at the Hammerstein Ballroom last night for the Ben Folds show. Personally, this was my second time seeing him live. The first time was last year at Radio City. On that occasion, Folds was his usual brilliant self but the large-room atmosphere and building-imposed curfew (to say nothing of the Pats getting corked at home by Indy on the same night) conspired against him. No such problems for this go-around. This time was just absolutely tremendous.

Some of the highlights...

-The set list was phenomenal. Ben played his staples from recent shows (like Trusted, Cooler, Gone, Learn To Live, Bitches, Army, etc, etc...) but he also threw in some great wild cards (like Still Fighting It, Boxing, Last Polka, Losing Lisa, Best Imitation & One Down).

-The atmosphere in the Ballroom was excellent. There were plenty of cameras in the crowd so I'm hoping some bootleg footage starts showing up on Youtube soon. (The cameras are kind of a mixed blessing by the way...very cool to get that footage when it pops up but a bit obnoxious to have so many people taking pictures and vids all night.) The audience participation on Army and Not The Same was top notch. But it was there all night.

-"Did Dr. Dre really write this song?" Actual quote, overheard by Hadley, from a girl standing behind us in reaction to Bitches Ain't Shit. Yes, Virginia. He really did.

-Watching Folds work the piano (plus the synth and a maraca) from close range. We were about 8-deep right behind him so we had a great view all night. On songs like Dr. Pyser and All U Can Eat he was going crazy at the end. And on a song like Narcolepsy, where he goes from banging the crap out of the piano with his elbow to playing beautiful little classical-feeling parts without breaking stride, you really get a full appreciation for his talent.

Overall, definitely one of the most enjoyable shows I've seen. About the only criticism I can think of was that it ended somewhat abruptly with just one encore. I would've been happy to stay for more. But other than that, it was great.


I wholeheartedly endorse this review....some other highlights:

-a group of 14 year olds having an ecstatic time fueled, well, by ecstasy. This included a group nap between Corn Mo's opening set and Ben's set.

- Corn Mo was extremely interesting. Best way to describe him without seeing him is he's a very talented, full band version of Tenacious D without the direct comedy schtick. Huge vocal presence. Looks like Meat Loaf. Really interesting. I like opening acts that push the envelope.

- Clarke and I were in the Top 5% age bracket. I would feel weird if we were seeing Brooke Hogan. But, please, this is a piano-lyricist in his mid 30s who is writing about growing old, his kids, his marriage, his divorce (first marriage), his parting of ways with old friends...good for Ben because he's making cash, but how does that remotely resonate with a high school student? "I got you to thank for this" is a line about a couple who married too soon and found out the hard way, not a prom date gone bad. That works in the cafeteria? I don't get it.

-That being said, there were two guys in our vicinity who were easily 8 years older than us who were there to pick up high school chicks. They were not smooth. It's not like they were even bad looking guys, they just had no game. First of all, they didn't know any of Folds' stuff. That stands out like a sore thumb at a Folds show. Folds fans don't look for the hits and then lay back when lesser known tracks are played. The entire show is generally devoured and the energy level never dips. These guys were just out of their element. It was great.

- My feet are still hurting. GA floor has its benefits, but the pain comes along with it.

- Don't get the Mini Burgers at the Andrews Diner across the street from the Hammerstein.

- I'd see Ben once a month. Not an issue. He's that good. Can't wait to take the girls...just need to wait for Ms. Hadley to decide when it's appropriate to subject them to Bitches Ain't Shit. I say 4 years old is fine.

Sunday, November 19, 2006


It got tough to watch the Sox this September, only David Ortiz and the presense of the young guys made it enjoyable. It is a shame that Ortiz broke Foxx's record while the team was 12 games back and not in the playoff hunt. Either way, here is a tribute to the big fella:

I really like the sound of a baseball hitting a bat.

Saturday, November 18, 2006

Meatloaf's .666 average

It's interesting how the meaning of an average changes drastically depending on what the sample is. Going two for three for a couple of games is fantastic in baseball and most likely impossible to sustain over a season. However, if you are getting two out of every three questions right on your GMATs... not so good. The reason I bring this up is my coworker was singing Meatloaf's "Two out of Three ain't Bad". After thinking about it for a solid hour at work, I decided that Meatloaf is completely full of it. Two out of three is piss poor when talking about love. I guess it depends on the sample size, but even then it is certainly a red flag. If you start dating Meatloaf (which is sort of a red flag in itself) and on the third date he starts dropping the ball, you would probably chalk it up to a bad day. However, if after 100 dates, he has F'ed up 33.3 times, well... I would have to cut the 'loaf loose. Not to steal the lyrical analysis from Clarke, but his faults are very prevalent within the lyrics of the song:

"I'm tired of words and I'm too hoarse to shout
But you've been cold to me so long
I'm crying icicles instead of tears"

-Two things. She is probably a bit upset about the fact you shouted till you went hoarse. That is not your typical, quick tempered fight. Going hoarse involves a prolonged, continuous period of yelling. She has every right to be cold. Secondly, if by some miraculous development, icicles do in fact replace your tears, you should get that checkout immediately. It sounds very painful.

"And all I can do is keep on telling you
I want you
I need you
But there ain't no way
I'm ever gonna love you
Now don't be sad
'Cause two out of three ain't bad
Now don't be sad
'Cause two out of three ain't bad"

-No Meatloaf, you're wrong. In this case, two out of three is not only bad, it's downright appalling. It's a deplorable effort.

"You'll never find your gold on a sandy beach
You'll never drill for oil on a city street
I know you're looking for a ruby
In a mountain of rocks
But there ain't no Coupe de Ville hiding
At the bottom of a Cracker Jack box"

-You really know how to shatter a girl's dreams don't you. However, what type of girl plows through a box of Cracker Jacks hoping for a Caddy? And how many mountains are made of something other than rock? I think you could have taken a page out of the George Costanza manual and gone with the age old, "It's not you... it's me" routine. Furthermore, no city in America is going to let some inexperienced woman start drilling for oil on a street and I would imagine no woman is slotting that in their weekend schedule. Drilling for oil is a dangerous, highly skilled activity that requires ridiculously expensive equipment. If she is really considering this and has the resources to get it done, you should contact the police immediately.

-When I imagine this situation, I would have to guess that the lady walked out half way through this next verse. He starts off the conversation by screaming at her until he loses his voice, which in his profession is suicide. The big guy then demolishes her aspirations and tells here that there is no way he can love her. I would think at this point, she gets the message and letting off the gas for a second would probably be beneficial to her self-esteem. But no, he feels the need go into this:

"There's only one girl that I will ever love
And that was so many years ago
And though I know I'll never get her out of my heart
She never loved me back, ooh I know
I remember how she left me on a stormy night
She kissed me and got out of our bed
And though I pleaded and I begged her
Not to walk out that door
She packed her bags and turned right away"

-Thanks Meatloaf, real f'n cool of you. Why don't you go ahead and tie the noose for me. It's been hard enough with the yelling and the insults. Not to mention that Meatloaf’s holler is not your average scream, but the type that causes seismic activity. I don't want to hear about your lost love, why don't you let go of the past and see what’s right in front of you. Lastly, I have a feeling you are cherry picking your stats here. Nowhere in the context of this song do I see any indication of you getting two out of three things right. Your average is more likely in the class of the 1962 Mets.

Friday, November 17, 2006

Hadley Waits

Just over 48 hours til Folds at Hammerstein....he's not for everyone, but if you like pianos and lyrics, I can't see how you can possibly deny the brilliance

The Notorious BSG

The best basketball writer on the planet delivered a tremendous column this week regarding, in no particular order of importance, the disaster of Doc Rivers, the hypocrisy of the media, the lack of necessity to be in a clubhouse (particularly because it completely ruins the joy of sports) to write informative and entertaining columns and the growing momentum of the basketball gods' ultimate thank you gift to Red (that being Gregory Oden). When Bill writes about hoop, it makes me enjoy the sport more. No other writer is able to do that. Peter King is fun, Gammons is a legend, but those sports are part of my bloodstream. Hey, I grew up a hockey player in Greater Boston. I'm Bruins first, Celts second. Simmons makes this sport fun:

"During a somber home game on Monday, Doc (now looking like Mikey after the answering machine scene in "Swingers") played 11 guys in the first 13 minutes against Orlando (the same team that fired him after a 1-10 start). The subs were coming fast and furiously, to the point that I think our penalty-killing line was out there at some point"

Good stuff....speaking of penalty-killing lines, the Bruins have rebounded nicely back to .500 with 3 straight wins. There is talent on this team, outside of goaltending where average is the standard we need to acheive until Tuukka (Rask) Yoot's Riddim arrives on the scene next year. But the Bruins look like they'll give us a winter despite the fact that Chiarelli (for better) and Lewis (for worse) play with the lines and the roster like a 12 year old when he loads up NHL ’07 for the first time. I expect Lewis to ask the refs if he can play with offsides and line changes off at some point in December.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Jersey On My Mind

The Diamondbacks just unveiled their new uniforms. Thank god they switched, because I am not sure if the league would have survived with only the Nationals wearing those colors. Nothing has pissed me off more than the constant altering of uniforms in sport. For some reason, every team believes that black, silver, and blue are the only colors that are going to attract consumers. The NHL even changed their classic logo to black and silver. It is not only incredibly irritating, but every team looks the same. This is most prevalent in the NHL, but is certainly not limited to it. Some classic uniforms have been ruined because some market research assistant compiled some statistical data and had some idiots fill out a survey. Have you ever wondered why the seats in Madison Square Garden are purple and aqua? Well, when they renovated it in 1991, they asked New Yorkers what the most popular colors were in an effort to enhance the color scheme. Unfortunately, the people they surveyed were wearing Skids and Hyper-color t-shirts at the time. Orange and Blue? Blue and White? No… let’s throw millions of dollars into what frigging colors are most popular while C&C Music Factory, Color Me Badd, Hi-Five, and Paula Abdul are on the billboard top ten. Just short-sighted decisions. Same thing happens with uniforms, they adjust them to raise the bottom line. Because of this some classics have been lost. I want to take a quick look at some that MUST be brought back.

Washington Capitals

-Why they are no longer red, white, and blue just boggles my mind. A no brainer in my opinion. As you know, they decided to go down the black, blue, silver, white road. Most likely because those colors have some deep roots in our nations capital.

Vancouver Canucks

-Just a classic jersey. Why mess with that. It is such a unique color scheme that set them apart. They also adopted the new standard for uniforms.

Houston Astros

-They have had so many different uni’s over the past 30 years it hard to figure out when they completely sold out. I always liked these though. I guess I have a soft spot for that throw-up yellow color.

Pat Patriot
-It is extremely hard to bring this one up. The Pats have seen plenty of success under their new logo, but you can't go wrong with Pat Patriot. Love the three point stance, classic material.

Then there are some that should be brought back for comedy sake. At the least, they would make watching games more entertaining.

Pittsburgh Pirates

-Sorry about the black and white, but you get the picture. Although, if they brought these uniforms back, they would have to force the entire team to adopt a mustache. I can't imagine a team having this uniform and not having a phenomenal stache.

Chicago White Sox

-You just can’t have this discussion and not incorporate these bad boys. It would not be prudent.

Hartford Whalers

-Gotta love the Cooperalls. Here we see Ron Francis showing the full range of motion that they offer. Love the Cooperalls. Also notice the size of the goalies pads. Goalie pads were so much smaller back then. If I were a goalie today, I would sport that mask as well. I feel like that could be a good intimidation factor during shootouts.

Lastly, there are plenty of teams that, due to a number of factors, are no longer with us. These moves not only take the local team away from the community, but some great uniforms away from us. Two of my favorite hockey sweaters traveled down this road

Quebec Nordiques

Winnipeg Jets

You can still get these jerseys, but it is not the same. In my opinion, you either bought yours when the team was around or you have no business wearing one. I am not a big fan of the throw back craze. As bad as I want that Canucks sweater, I will not buy one now... it wouldn't feel right. I also wish someone would burn all alternate uniforms, especially the Bruins.

Never Look Back

Under 5 hours until the Scranton/Stamford branch merges...and you know what? I'm rooting for Karen. Love the Pammer, but she had her moment. I'm on Team Stamford now.

We also get to experience the first moment that Dwight realizes Jim is his boss and the first collision of Andy and Dwight. Wow.

Doyle Redland Reporting

If you aren't listening to The Onion Radio News every day, find a way to squeeze 45 seconds away from something else and marinate in this comedy jewel instead. They knock it out of the park at least 80% of the's is good, but make sure you check out yesterday's masterpiece Wet-T-Shirt Contest Runner-Up Consoled.
You know that Married Cops Aggressively Volunteer For Asian Massage Parlor Task Force is right around the corner. Yes, I just made that up...not bad, huh?

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Dear Blender...

I know music is subjective but...

Thank you for your feature on the Killers. I'm sick and tired of hearing people rag on Brandon Flowers - OK, he has a big mouth sometimes, but he's earned it. His music is proof that rock & roll can ennoble the spirit, deepen the soul and change people's lives for the better. Critics are right to say that Sam's Town isn't on the level of Bruce Springsteen or U2 - because it is twice as good as anything those guys have ever put out. Also, Brandon is really hot."

-Jennifer Kolows, Pueblo, CO're wrong, Jennifer. Sam's Town is not twice as good as anything Springsteen or U2 has ever done. It just isn't. Sorry.

Worst Draft Ever

The guys over at Clubbing With Danny Ferry make an argument that no one rivals the 2000 NBA draft class as worst of all time.

Top Five:

1) Kenyon Martin

2) Stromile Swift

3) Darius Miles

4) Marcus Fizer

5) Mike Miller

Very entertaining read.

A City Misplaced

So I'm leaving a meeting in Chicago at the Merchandise Mart and there's a large gathering in front of the building. Turns out that Rex Grossman was there for a Starbucks promo event that launched their Christmas drink menu (welcome back, Peppermint Mocha). Rex was throwing snowballs at former Bears/BC token white WR Tom Waddle, who is seemingly the Scott Zolak of Chicago. Everyone was jolly.

Well, at least everyone but my cab driver. I jump in a cab and the guy asks me "Is that Grossman over there?" I confirmed that it was. His response: "He's the f'in (he didn't use the abbreviated version) weakest link on our football team. I'm saying something." He wasn't kidding. The guy rolls down the window as we pass Rexy signing footballs for agency girls and screams "Grossman, you are the weakest link!" and starts laughing like a hyena. We couldn't have been more than 7 feet from Grossman. A cop yelled at him "Grow up, dickhead!" and we pulled away over the bridge to The Loop....

Two things:

1. He really was reliant on that "Weakest Link" line, huh? That show was big in the States BEFORE 9/11. It's been over 5 years. That's right in Michael Scott's wheelhouse.

2. I've said it before and I'll say it again: Chicago belongs wedged somewhere in the middle of Boston, Philly and New York. It's a kindred spirit. They care about their city. They care about their sports teams. They care about their politics (I've been told that some of the local elections were about as ugly as it person was accused of "taking the books out of schools" that's comedy). They care about their history. You can Monsters of the Midway me all you want...this city belongs in the Northeast.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

There's A Reason Creed Is Buying Shots

Quick update: Office fans need to head to Itunes now and buy last week's masterpiece, Branch Closing, even if you've already seen it 3 times on TiVo. There's 8 minutes of extra scenes, including tasty subplots with Creed and Meredith....and Dwight has one of the best plays to the camera in show history. It's pretty cool when a show has so much momentum that it has cutting-room floor scenes that are better than everything else on TV.

Learning Fast With Wiki

How much can I learn in 30 minutes? I ask this because when I find myself lost in a daze of boredom, I always end up over at Wikipedia. Once you get started with the endless link that is wiki, there is no stopping. You start at “The Goonies” page and the next thing you know you are researching Booby Traps. Booby Traps inevitably leads you to practical jokes, which in turn derails you to “The Massacre of the Innocents”. Now you went from reminiscing about Data and Chunk to learning about the episode of infanticide from the Gospel of Matthew. This happens all the time.
The way I look at it, there is two ways to attack the world of wiki. The aforementioned method is the one I use the most. I begin at a specified page and let the magic happen from there. You end up losing track of time and the next thing you know its 2:45 am and you’re discovering the origins of the 1st Delaware Regiment. The second method is the random page passage. A chaotic, unstructured adventure guided by the unknown forces within wiki. Which is better? It is a matter of mood, taste, opinion, etc. My question is how much can I learn in 30 minutes with Wiki driving. Will it be useful, important information or just complete junk food? I will judge each page on a 1-5 scale. 5 being immensely entertaining or useful and 1 being a waste of time. Let’s begin.

The time is currently 11:38pm:

Page 1: Cecil Charles Windsor Aldin
-Alright lets see what we got. Well first of all, you have to love that name. As Tobias would say, “That sure is a mouthful”. Cecil was a British artist that specialized in two things: Animals and rural life. Not too much more to see here.
----Rating: 1, although I am a big fan of that name.

Page 2: Mattoon, Illinois
If you find yourself in Coles County, Illinois… make sure you hit up Mattoon. No kidding… they mention Will Leitch, Deadspin's editor, on this puppy. Apparently, Will grew up in Mattoon and his novel CATCH is set there. Wiki just amazes me everyday. Mattoon saw a small oil boom in the 40’s and 50’s that led to some beneficial economic activity. The city is also the self-declared “Bagel Capital of the World” and if you head to Mattoon during those hot summer months you can take part in “Bagelfest”.
----Rating: 4, some interesting information here. However, I always question places that declare themselves anything. You just can't self-declare yourself something can you? This happens all the time with Roast Beef shops where we are from, they are all "famous". Who says so?

Page 3: Lyrestad
There are only 20 words on this page. “Lyrestad is a village of Mariestad Municipality in Sweden. In Lyrestad the main Stockholm – Gothenburg railway crosses the Gota Canal.” Can we get someone on this, I mean 20 words?
----Rating: 0, I know I said a 1-5 scale but this is just a lack of effort on someone’s part. They couldn't give us anything more? Really? I may just make something up, see if anyone will actually police the Lyrestad page. No chance anyone will...right?

Update: 13 minutes have gone by

Page 4: Patrick Fisher
Our first sports reference! Patrick Fisher was born on September 3, 1975 in Zug, Switzerland and plays for the Phoenix Coyotes. On October 5, Fisher appeared in his first NHL game against the Islanders. I just looked up his stats this year. Thus far he has notched two goals and two assists. He has a plus/minus of -1 and has spent 12 minutes in the box. I also saw that our boy Nick Boynton has a plus/minus of -8 and has spent 62 minutes in the booth this year. We miss ya Nick.
----Rating: 3, I wonder how many sport articles are on Wiki... it has to be a huge number. Think of all the players, teams, leagues, games, colleges, law suits, mechanics, literature, movies, etc.

Page 5: Chickenman (radio series)
Dick Orkin created this radio program that spoofed comic book heroes. Loosely based on Batman, the shows main character worked as a shoe salesman and fought crime at night as the “Winged Warrior”. They had 273 episodes of this. 273 episodes is roughly 40 more episodes than Friends produced and 100 more than Seinfeld.
----Rating: 2, I just can't see this working today. We are so much less patient then a half century ago. Hell, I can't even watch telvision shows in real time anymore. I will do some other activity for fifteen minutes and then watch it so I can skip the commercials. No shot I would be able to catch 273 episodes of the Chickenman, no chance.

Page 6: Coefficient
Here’s the thing. These are the pages you just skip. You see the title and click “Random Article” again. It doesn’t affect the value of the journey, it just makes you wait longer for the gem down the road
----Rating: Skipped. Often I get a chain of pages worthy of the skip and I will read almost anything. There is a lot of useless boring crap out there and you realize it pretty fast when cruising through wiki.

Page 7: Jim Lash
Lash was a wide receiver for the Vikings for 5 years. During those years his Jim and his teammates lost Super Bowl VIII, Super Bowl IX, and Super Bowl XI to the Dolphins, Steelers, and Raiders respectively.
----Rating: 3, I would have given Jim a four if the Vikings could have mustered up a win. Marv Levy's page wouldn't see a 4, so neither will Lash.

Update: 24 minutes… lets try to get a gem in here before its all said and done

Page 8:Maria Angelova
She was an Author... she died in 1999.. blah, blah, blah
----Rating: 1

Page 9: Pandoro
A very tasty, traditional Italian sweet bread. Popular around Christmas. I would spend more time but I think I can get another page in before my deadline.
-----Rating: Rushed, but I do like Pandoro and suggest everyone to give it a whirl. Speaking of whirl, we discovered that Ben and Jerry's discontinued their flavor "One Sweet Whirl" which was my favorite ice cream they made. Seriously, head over to their website and look at their graveyard. They have killed some tremendous flavors.

Page 10: The Fabulous Thunderbirds
-TFT as I now like to call them were a blues-rock band in the late 70’s and 80’s. “The first two albums (with Keith Ferguson on bass and Mike Buck on drums), did not initially sell well, but are now regarded as successful white blues recordings.” I think that is a compliment, but I am not sure. They did break “into the mainstream” in 1986 when their appeared behind Burt Lancaster and Kirk Douglas in “Tough Guys”. The found more success on the silver screen the following year in “Hot Pursuit” starring John Cusack. They produced 12 albums with “Butt Rockin’” being my favorite title.
----Rating: 3, some good info, but I was hoping for something better to end with. Maybe something like this or this or even this

Times up and I did not receive that diamond in the rough that I was looking for, but I won't let that get me down. I will just sit up and continue to hit that “random article” button until I am satisfied. So what did I learn this past half hour? I learned where Will from Deadspin grew up and that he wrote a book that was set there as well, that Nick Boynton is spending more time in the box than on the ice, and that I could care less about coefficients. However, for the most part I was only concerned with finding that one page that made it all worth while. And that is why Wikipedia consumes so much of my time. I guess it reminds me of playing golf. You can spend 4 hours hacking around, playing like absolute garbage. You can swear to your buddies that you’re done; you’re putting the clubs away and spending your money and time elsewhere. However, all it takes is that one shot. That one shot that brings you back. Same principle applies in the world of Wiki. I can waste my time for hours, but then you get that one that draws you right back in.
----Final Rating: It may have been a bunch of pointless information, but 30 minutes never went by so quick and that is enough for me to give it a 5.

Monday, November 13, 2006

Gammons Reports Sox Win Matsuzaka Bid

Peter Gammons has reported that the Sox bid $42 million dollars for the rights to negotiate with Daisuke Matsuzaka. Gammons has been extremely quiet on this topic up to this point, which makes me believe this is genuine information.

A couple of points. Many people will question the amount spent on the posting bid. The fact is, Matsuzaka opens up a ton of revenue streams for the Sox that they have yet to tap into. They will gain presence in the Asian market both in the U.S and abroad. This will not only raise revenue through merchandising, but also through sponsorships. The $42 million dollars does not go toward the salary cap and will most likely benefit them when it comes to taxation and revenue sharing. It blocks DM from the Yankees and gives them a top of the rotation starter who will be 27. The question now is how much are the Sox willing to give DM for a salary. He makes about 3 million a year with the Seibu Lions. Considering Scott Boras is his agent, they could be looking for triple that. I think the sox will offer no more than $10 million, but that is just speculation. If they make an offer to low, I would imagine some owners (Goerge) would preach bad faith. That being said, I think they get this thing done fairly quickly. That would mean the sox would potentially have 3, maybe 4, starters in their mid-to-upper twenties.

Assuming this thing pans out, I can’t wait for the first time Matsuzaka faces Matsui.

A Swampy Foxboro

So I'm pissed off enough as it is after that Jets debacle yesterday (weird season, nobody's talking about two obvious things: 1. Gabriel's game-altering fumble...very few things kill a team quite like fumbling a huge offensive play and 2. Second straight year (and one half of the Carolina Super Bowl) that the defense cannot get off the field on 3rd down with Rodney Harrison on the sidelines. These are two HUGE reasons they lost yesterday, not covered in any game story. Go figure).

So, Amazon decides to send me this email this morning, apparently to taunt me. I think they need to work on their related purchases emails, if you ask me....

Dear Customer,
We've noticed that customers who have expressed interest in Super Bowl XXXVI - New England Patriots Championship Video have also ordered The Legends of the Florida Gators on DVD. For this reason, you might like to know that The Legends of the Florida Gators is now available on DVD. You can order your copy for just $25.95 by following the link below.

The Legends of the Florida Gators

I think I'll pass.

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Used To Love 'Em, But I Have To Kill Them

I'm not saying it wasn't fun. It was. That was exclusively a result of the crew we rolled in with. When you bring Boston, Buffalo, Manoguayabo with a double shot of Rochester together, madness generally ensues. The only problem was that Paul and I went head to head with W. Axl on Nightrain and I honestly think our version was better. Oh, Axl doesn't look a bit like the photo to your right. He's not in fighting shape. Not in the least.

Here were the main issues:

1. Sound was awful. Speakers were muted, I believe intentionally because Axl couldn't hit the notes, to the point where you could have a normal voice level conversation with the person next to you while the concert was going on...not exactly what you expect from a GnR show.

2. Not a very well-thought out setlist....the new songs and the guitar and drum and piano solos were show stoppers...and not in the good way. They actually brought the show to a halt.

3. Chinese Democracy is not an album with appealing music. You won't get it confused with Paul's Boutique, London Calling or Blood On The Tracks, trust me.

4. Axl's energy level is gone. Hey, the songs they were pumping out were fun to sing to, but remember how nuts he used to get during Knockin'? The sprinting around the stage? The "I'll sing one and you sing one" callback? The spandex? None of it is there. It's all gone.

All in all, very happy I went, but when the highlight of the night was chanting "Guns....N....Reyes" and the Shea Stadium/Jose chant with the biggest Mets fan on the planet outside of MSG (much funnier when you've been drinking for 8 hours and seeing pissed off Yankee fans glare at you), well that doesn't say much for Axl's new band.

Here's his old band:

The Rule Of Five

I have discovered it. It took time, it took patience, but I have figured it out. It all comes down to the rule of 5. Last night I went out to a bar with Machonette and her friend and they sat there cordial and quiet. I looked around the bar and saw women in groups of two and three everywhere, just quietly enjoying their night out. In most cases the same was true for a group of four. But wait, oh god, just wait, until you get the fifth. For some reason five girls is the equivalent to Jumanji. Actually, I have never even seen Jumanji, nor do I know if I am spelling it right, but I am pretty sure that is what being around five or more women feels like. If you find yourself in a situation where, god forbid, Alanis is on the radio and there are more than five women in the area, I would suggest just swallowing Draino. Not because I hate women, I love them. Not because I hate Jagged Little Pill, good album. Mostly because the combination of the two creates a mosh pit like environment of long, sharp nailed women with a sincere hatred toward the male gender. I realized this tonight. Playing pool... shooting pretty good stick, when a nice quiet group of two starts to gain some momentum. Two turns into three and the next thing I know it looks like a gauntlet drill gone bad. They are pulling dance moves that would make Kevin Bacon’s character in Footloose feel uncomfortable. They are out of control to the point where we have to stop playing pool because their little drum circle is expanding onto the felt.

Guys, my friends, we have always been okay by ourselves. It took me a while to pinpoint this, but when a group of girls breaks the fifth person barrier it’s like they conjure up some Umberto Unity mojo and just lose their f’n minds. You do not want to be near this situation. It never ends well. The fifth girl will bring on a whole different dimension. Blue turns to gray, up becomes down and things only turn for the worse. I am not sure why this happens, nor do I want to know. I do know that if I have a daughter, I am going to have a ceiling on the number of friends she can have.

Sidenote: I hope that Olney is right about the Sox landing Matsuzaka.

Friday, November 10, 2006

Old S.I. Review (November 21, 1988)

This edition focuses on an issue from November of 1988 with the inspired headline of "WHOA!" in honor of the Saints victory over the LA Rams in a key NFC West matchup. Let's jump right in....

No, Seriously...What If?

Towards the front of the issue there's a story written by a guy who was in the Stanford Band back in '82 and was on the field for the famous play against Cal. It's written kind of tongue-in-cheek. He talks about what the scene was like, how he may have been responsible for leading the band onto the field, how he should've tackled him and how he feels bad about it to this day even though, ultimately, it brought a lot of attention to the band and was "the best thing that ever happened to us."

It's the "should have tackled him" part that piques my interest though. Because, what I'm wondering is...seriously...what have happened if, by some freak of nature, a band member (or two...or six) had brought him down? Honestly? Would the refs have awarded him a TD because he was going to score? Would they have given a penalty and had another play? What the hell is the correct ruling on something like that?

US Olympic Gold on TBS

This show's still on the air, isn't it....

The Turner Broadcasting System announced that it will produce a weekly show called US Olympic Gold featuring world-class competition. The show will debut on superstation TBS on Jan. 7 with a boxing matchup between the U.S. and South Korea. "We hope every Olympic sport will appear at least once in the first 12 to 18 months, and that some will appear on a six-, eight- or nine-times-a-year basis," TBS senior executive vice-president Robert Wussler said.

Week 11 NFC West Showdown (Between Two Teams That Would Not Win The NFC West)

The cover story is the game recap of the Week 11 battle for first place in the NFC West in '88 between the Rams and the Saints in L.A. Both teams came into the game with matching 7-3 records and a 1-game lead over the 6-4 49ers. The Saints won the game 14-10 behind a stingy defensive effort and a few sweeps from Rueben Mayes much to the dismay, I would assume, of Magic Johnson, who appears in the article wearing a blue satin Rams jacket on the LA sideline.

Couple good quotes from the article...

"I'm a coverage linebacker and those aren't the guys who make All-Pro or get the Pro Bowl votes. Sacks are what people look at. I've taken pride in my coverage, being able to run downfield with a Gary Anderson or a Herschel Walker. When I was with Jacksonville, I made All-USFL, but who remembers something like that?"
-Saints L.B. Vaughan Johnson (Good question, Vaughan. Who does remember something like that?)

"This win was much bigger than big. This was a gigantic win for the Saints."
-Coach Jim Mora

And it seems as though S.I. agreed with Coach Mora. Here's the final paragraph of the story...

The remainder of the Saints' schedule is rough but not impossible - the Denver Broncos and the New York Giants at home, followed by the Minnesota Vikings and San Francisco 49ers on the road and the Atlanta Falcons in New Orleans. Now that the Saints have a one-game lead in the NFC West, you get the feeling that they'll be tough to dislodge. Maybe that's what Mora meant when he talked about Sunday's "gigantic" victory.

Well, as it turns it, that win wasn't so gigantic in the end. After bombing Denver 42-0 the next week the '88 Saints would limp to the wire losing 3 of their last 4 to finish 10-6 and in a 3-way tiebreaker with L.A. and San Francisco atop the division. San Fran not only won that tiebreaker...they'd eventually go on to win the Super Bowl. L.A. finished 2nd in the tiebreaker and ended up getting beat by the Vikings in a wild card game. The Saints didn't make the playoffs.

Everyone Hated The Hogs

The strangest story in the issue was about an Arkansas football team that, at the time, was 10-0 and, apparently, almost universally despised. The article claims that even their own fans didn't like them that much because they played boring football under coach Ken Hatfield, who everyone seemed to dislike, and because the old Southwest Conference was considered such a joke by then that Arkansas was ranked 9th behind no less than 5 one-loss teams.

(Incidentally, Arkansas would lose to two of those one-loss teams in their last two games - Miami in the regular season finale and UCLA in the Cotton Bowl - to finish the year with a 10-2 record.)

In any event, the story recaps the Hogs' 25-20 win over a Texas A&M team that began the year as a national title contender but, after the loss, had free-fallen to 5-5. I don't know much about that '88 Aggies squad offhand but if this description of the pregame scene in their locker room is any indication, it doesn't sound like there was too much fight left in them at this point...

Coach Jackie Sherrill tried to get his troops fired up by writing PARTY TIME on the chalkboard. No reaction. He talked about ruining the Razorbacks' homecoming; he told his charges, "We're bringing a skunk to their party." No one stirred. Finally, he shouted in exasperation, "You guys act like you're going to your own funeral. From the back of the room, a player responded, "Naw, we're going to theirs."

How Sweet It Was
Sugar Ray Leonard KO'd Donny Lalonde and savored every brutal second of it

That's an actual headline from this issue. I have nothing to add.

Free Smokes

Question: Is there a giant pop-ad for Camel Cigarettes in the middle of the issue that includes a coupon for a free pack of Camels, any style, no questions asked?

Answer: Why yes. Yes, there is.

Articles That Failed To Impress

The story of a foreign tour of major league baseball all-stars to Japan. The story of Curtis Strange winning the Nabisco Championships at Pebble Beach. A story about Seattle offensive lineman Bryan Millard and his dual passion for football and bass fishing. A story about Roger Penske. A story about Doc Blanchard (Mr. Inside), Glenn Davis (Mr. Outside) and the glory days of Army football.

Down Times For Ohio Football

Also failing to impress, back in '88, was college football in the state of Ohio. The Inside College Football section noted that Toledo, at 6-5, was the only team in the state with a winning record. Ohio State was 4-5-1 with a game to go. Combined, the eight Division 1-A teams in the state, went 15-40 against out of state competition. Funny how things like that go in cycles.

Beat Burritos?

Inside College Football also has a little blurb about some racially-charged incidents that took place over the course of a few weeks at different games in the fall of '88 across the country. Some BYU players were accused of taunting San Diego State players with racial slurs. Some Indiana fans were accused of doing the same to some Iowa players. And then there's this bizarre story...

Of the five schools in Tijuana, Mexico that play American style football, only the private Centro de Ensenanza Tecnica y Superior sends its team across the border to play in the U.S. At a recent game against Coronado (Calif.) High, which is 20 miles away from San Diego, the Tijuana players had to endure chants of "B-E-A-T B-U-R-R-I-T-O-S" by the Coronado cheerleading squad."

Obviously, the racial aspect of that story is disgusting. But "Beat Burritos?" That doesn't even make sense.

Faces In The Crowd

Hey, we've finally got a recognizable name in the Faces in the Crowd section. It's Malivai Washington, who got a mention for winning the NCAA singles title for Michigan as a Sophomore.

A Promo For The Ages

Finally, here's my favorite thing in the entire issue. Buried towards the back is a full-page ad for ESPN's Sunday Night Football. And here's the copy for that ad...


Casual embrace or half nelson? Find out November 20 as the Dolphins greet their division rivals, the Patriots, on NFL Sunday Night Football at 8PM (ET). This friendly exchange is preceded by NFL PrimeTime at 7PM. So tune in Sunday and see Miami's 11-man Welcome Wagon in action.

That's awesome.

The Pats won that game 6-3 by the way. So I guess it was more of a casual embrace from Miami.

Past S.I. Reviews...

He's a Cold Heartbreaker, Fit To Burn and He'll Rip Your Heart In Two

Yes, I'm going to GnR tonight. Yes, it's sans Slash and Duff. That's a bit sad, but, when it's all said and done, I'll be ripping through Paradise City sometime around midnight. Really, what else do you need in life?

So, in honor of the show, you may see some Axl poetry show up on 10CFP today. This one is for the Honorable Jeremy Ito and the Scarlet Knights, pulling off a comeback for the ages...if Deadspin links us today, I implore you pollsters to make sure Rutgers is in your Top 7. That's not too much to ask. I don't think it's going to happen in Morgantown, to be honest, but that game deserves a quantum leap in the polls.

On another note, Machon's Office recap below is right on...that ep was loaded....I take away a few things:


- Michael's tremendous Michael Moore/Bowling For Columbine rift

- "Creed's buying shots"

- Finally, on a plotline basis, I loved the way they had Josh Porter scam Jan and take the job at Staples. You knew Scranton wasn't closing, it was just a matter of how they kept Michael Jim said, "Say what you want about Michael Scott, but he would never do THAT." Also, loved that they dropped the very clear confessional at the end with Karen. She's into Jim. Here we go...Scranton's got a little something going on....

Stamford meet Scranton

Great Office last night and the perfect time to bring the two branches together. My favorite line was the first one:

"So I fax Dwight. From himself. From the future."

Someone turned me over to Rashida Jones' IMDB page (Jim's Stamford woman, or point C in the soon to be formed love triangle as I like to call her.) They list 12 things you did not know about her, pretty interesting:

1. Younger sister of Kidada Jones
2. Went to the Buckley School in Sherman Oaks, California. Was voted Most Likely to Succeed.
3. Daughter of composer Quincy Jones and actress Peggy Lipton.
4. Her name is Egyptian for "righteous."
5. On People Magazine's "50 Most Beautiful People" list. (USA) [2002]
6. Sings backup vocals on 3 songs on Maroon 5's album "Songs About Jane."
7. Sister of Quincy Jones III.
8. Formerly engaged to celebrity DJ Mark Ronson on 25th February 2003.
9. Has a photographic memory.
10. Niece of Robert Lipton.
11. Formerly engaged to Tobey Maguire.
12. Graduated from Harvard University (1997)

Two and seven pretty much equate each other, and I am not sure how Robert Lipton got into the mix, but overall some interesting stuff. I can't wait to have a Andy and Dwight in the same office, especially now that Jim received the promotion.

The video below is extremely well done, by far the best Office montage on youtube up to date, just a killer job editing. It is a bit long, but well worth it:

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Lyrics Analysis (You Got It (The Right Stuff))

As always, my comments in red....

New Kids on the Block
Hangin' Tough
Written by: Maurice Starr (Funny…I remember Danny, Donnie, Joe, John & Jordan…I don’t recall a Maurice in there.)

First time was a great time
Second time was a blast
Third time I fell in love
Now I hope it lasts (Whoa, whoa, whoa. Slow down, slugger. You just met this girl. You’re already in love now and talking about a long-term relationship? The great Phil Collins once sang, “You can’t hurry love,” and I think you need to heed that advice. Take it easy. See how that 4th date goes. Maybe wait until you have a chance to meet each other’s folks. Let’s not get carried away here.)
I can see it in your walk (Really? I’m gonna call b.s. on that one. You can see what in her walk? What’s so distinctive about it?)
Tell it when you talk
I can see it in everything you do (Everything? The way she eats toast? The way she signs her name? The way she brushes her teeth?)
Even in your thoughts (All right, we’ve been over this before. There seems to be this fairly common notion in pop music that the singers of these songs have some kind of mind reading ability. Well, let me dispel that entire notion for good right now. None of you can read minds. And especially not The New Kids. OK? Stop telling us you can read minds. You can’t.)

You've got the right stuff, baby
Love the way you turn me on (Isn’t that kind of implied? I mean, don’t you HAVE to love whatever it is that turns you on? I mean, IT TURNS YOU ON, after all.)
You've got the right stuff, baby
You're the reason why I sing this song (Obviously)

All that I needed was you
Oh girl, you're so right
And all that I wanted was you
You made all
My dreams come true (Lovely sentiment but probably not entirely accurate. Didn’t you ever dream of being a pro athlete or an astronaut or something? I mean, I certainly have. Well, at least the athlete one. It seems unlikely that anyone, no matter how much they love you could make all of your dreams come true.)

Oh, Oh, Oh, Oh, Oh
Oh, Oh, Oh, Oh,
Oh, Oh, Oh, Oh, Oh
The right stuff
Oh, Oh, Oh, Oh, Oh
Oh, Oh, Oh, Oh,
Oh, Oh, Oh, Oh, Oh
The right stuff (That's 28 'Oh's' if you're scoring at home...)

First kiss was sweet kiss
Second kiss had a twist (Great line.)
Your third and your fourth kiss I don't wanna miss (You know what would be funny? If he kept keeping track of them for the rest of the relationship. And kept evaluating them. “You know, what? Kiss #147 was kind of average. I expect better things from kiss #148.”)
I can see it in your walk
Tell it when you talk
I can see it in everything you do
Even in your thoughts

You've got the right stuff, baby
Love the way you turn me on
You've got the right stuff, baby
You're the reason why I sing this song

All that I needed was you
In my life, you're so right
And all that I wanted was you
You made all
Every one of my dreams come true


(break down of chorus) (...always fun to break down the chorus.)

Girl.....yeah baby
You know you've got the right stuff
And girl....yeah baby
You know you, you know you've got it girl

In my life, you're so right
You made all
You know what you did (Well, she does now. Hope she digs your walk as much as you dig hers.)


Losing Lost: The Two Month Wait Begins

So the preseason of Lost, as I am calling it, has come and gone. If you did not watch one of the episodes and are planning too, I would not read any further. I am going to try and highlight some of the issues that were surfaced and answered.

First, let’s have a look at what we learned:

-Before the Oceanic plane crashed on the island, it looked like the others lived as normal lives as they possibly could. When they felt the rumbling they got into, what looked like, earthquake positions. (This leads me to believe they are certainly off the coast of Australia, which is on the Pacific plate) Once they realized it was not a quake, they ran outside and saw the plane. Henry Gale, as we knew him then, started to bark orders. This led me to believe that he either A) has done this before, B) was planning for it, or C) is very good at thinking on his toes.
-Henry Gale is actually Ben. Ben is the leader of this particular group on the island. I say that because we now know there is a man named Jacob, who most likely is more important. This became clear last episode when Daniel said “Shepard was not even on Jacob’s list”. Then there is also the black lady from the last episode of season two. We have yet to see her.
-It seems that the deadly supernatural force on the island appears different depending on who sees it. Eko saw it on multiple occasions, as a black smog that eventually killed him. Locke saw it as a beautiful white light.
-We learned that the others definitely do have access to the outside world. They have conjured up impressive amounts of very personal information on everyone. Not only do they have access, but most likely are connected to some governmental or very deep pocketed enterprise.
- Juliet and Ben have some sort of past history. Jack did ask Juliet about Dharma and while I can’t quote her response, she mentioned that if they once were here, they no longer are.
- The island that Jack, Sawyer, and Kate are on is not the main island. It is a couple miles offshore and the others get back and forth through a submarine. This is the island that Dharma was doing the animal research on. They also now have Desmond’s boat. Desmond can see the future too, thought I would through that in.
-The Polar bear that Sawyer shot was part of a Dharma experiment. They kept two of them in the cages that Sawyer and Kate are now in. We met the second Polar a couple episodes ago while it was taking its time eating Eko. We saw a toy truck and a Dharma logo in the cave as well.
-There is another man in, presumably, one of the the main island hatches. It looks like he knew that the group led by Locke saw him because he shut off the camera. He wears a patch. Could this be Jacob? We have seen three of the hatches, maybe four if the fake one Sayid saw was actually a real one. So he may be residing in one of the remaining ones.
-Sun is not as innocent as we may have once believed. Even as a little girl she sold out her maid instead of taking the blame. She’s a cheat, a liar, and shot that woman. Jin is smarter than we thought and Sayid has been making a number of mistakes.
-They are keeping Jack alone and Kate and Sawyer together. It was mentioned by Sayid, albeit another topic, that Kate and Sawyer are probably together so they can make sure the other one complies. I am guessing that the others think that Jack is more vulnerable alone.

What has surfaced?

-Well first of all, who is telling the truth on Alcatraz? Ben and Juliet have some problems but there is a lot going on that we don’t know about. Was Daniel ever really going to kill Sawyer or was that all a play to get Sawyer and Kate to perform the act they ended up doing? Was the whole Juliet and the note card scene a ploy Jack saw through? Did Juliet leave out that X-Ray on purpose, so Jack would see it? We know about Jack, but is Ben a Sox fan as well? All very important, unanswered information.
-How did Alex make such a nice sling shot, and when did she find the time to get such accuracy? We see her twice (she is Rousseau’s daughter) and both times she is frantic and trying to help Kate. The boy in the cage who tried to free Sawyer was her husband, he is now dead. She asked about Ben and Ben asked about her before the operation. What is the connection? Is he her true father? Fake father?
-What happened in the hatch to make Desmond see the future? Something is going on with him and we will soon find out. And by soon I mean 2 months or so.
-Eko told Locke “you are next”. We don’t know if that “you” was plural or Eko meant Locke. There has been a lot of speculation about the possibility of the island being a sort of purgatory, but this has been denied on the J.J Abrams front time and time again.
-Was that really the last we will see of Walt and Michael? There was an awful lot of time invested in both characters. I thought they would show up again. It just felt like they were being hosed. Why would a compass even work on this island with the crazy magnetic forces it possesses? Desmond tried to sail away and just ended up back at the island. Why would they be able to get out? Is that direction the only way out? Did Jack and crew remember it when Ben said it out loud? While were on this topic, I am confused why they even incorporated the tail enders last season. They had many back stories on Anna Lucia, Libby, Bernard, and Eko. Those characters played a huge role and took up a ton of time, now all are dead except Bernard and the chick the others kidnapped and we haven’t seen either of them. Actually, so far it has been all about the others, Jack/Sawyer/Kate, Locke, and Eko. We had the one episode with the Jin/Sun backstory and Sayid has seen about 8 minutes this season, but besides that its been the big 6.
-Ben and Juliet have said that they are not “the bad ones” multiple times. We still do not know what this means or why they say it.

There was plenty more, but that is all I can remember. Feel free to add on below. I liked the start to the season a lot, I was a bit bummed out about Eko… but like Locke says there must have been a reason. For what it’s worth, I heard the reason may have had something to do with his attitude during shoots.

I expect great things after the holidays.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Jersey Trashed

This is probably the ultimate jinx 48 hours before Rutgers Stadium turns into a madhouse for the first time since, well , ever. But it needs to be addressed. Rutgers is getting hosed in both the Harris and Coaches Poll. Badly. Now, I know they have to get through West Virginia and Louisville and it is highly unlikely that they win both games. However, the BCS computer has them at 9, higher than Texas, WVU, LSU and Arkansas. They pasted Illinois 33-0, a squad that gave the Buckeyes quite a run this past week. They won fairly convincingly at Pitt. Still, the humans have left them at 13 and 14 in the polls. Doesn't seem very fair.

The real problem that I have is the premise going around that 12-0 won't get them a crack at the BCS Title game. So, it's okay if the Big 12 stinks for a couple of years because they have tradition, but the Big East doesn't get props in a year that you have three really good teams and a couple decent ones...AND they kicked out Temple? Call me crazy, but if you get through Louisville, Pitt, South Florida and West Virginia unscathed AND you schedule a Big Ten and a ACC school for OOC games, you get the title game if there are less than three teams that haven't lost.

All that being said, Louisville 31 Rutgers 20. Teel will fall short.

NHL 94: A Compelling Read

Much has been made about the actual video game. We agree with everything that has been said, it is the Beatles of video game hockey. However, that is not why I am here today. Today I want to look at the most underrated part of this game. No, not the crowd meter, not the unstoppable force that is the Phil Housley, today I am here to talk about the Instruction Manual.

That may sound a bit weird, but I assure you once you look at it you will understand. To begin with, it is 88 pages long. That’s right… 88 pages. The game involves 3 buttons and a directional pad and still produced the longest instructional manual of all time. Let’s have a gander:

1) We open up this magnificent text and find a picture of Mark Lesser. This section is called “About The Man”. We learn:
-Mark and his wife are raising two boys in New England
-Mark programmed and designed the hardware chip for Mattel Football and Auto Race in 1976.
-Mark's hobby is “Programming games”. Okay Mark… we get it.

2) On the first page Sega politely offers an “Epilepsy Warning” and some useful hints to avoid an epileptic seizure:
- “Sit at least 2.5 meters from the television screen.”
- “If you are tired or have not had much sleep, rest and commence playing after you are fully rested.”
- “Make sure the room in which you are playing is well lit”
-“Use the game on a small a television screen as possible (preferable 14” or smaller)”

- “Rest for at least 10 minutes per hour while playing a video game”
- “Parents should supervise their children’s use of video games”

- I am not even sure they make TV’s that small anymore and I am positive that no SEGA controller was ever 8 feet long. The two I have are like 3 feet long and force you to be as close as humanly possible to the TV. As for the resting before commencing nonsense… they have got to be kidding me. Furthermore, parents buy their kids video games so the DON’T have to supervise them.

3) The next section is basic controls. I am still impressed that you could do so much with so little. With 3 buttons you could: Speed Burst, Body Check, Change Lines, Flip Pass, Clear Puck, Pass Puck, Wrist Shot, Slap Shot, One Timer, Change Player, Dive, Control Goalie, Hold, Hook, Poke Check, Trip, and take the face off.

4) The game came with an abundance of new features. If you recall, that was the best part of buying the game each year. You read the back of the game on the way home to get an inside look at what Ron Barr is bringing to the table this year. The big one here, the one that makes this the best hockey game of all time, is the One Timer. They give us a brief description of it:
“A One-Timer is a maneuver between two teammates: Player A has the puck, passes to player B, who lets the puck ricochet off his stick in an attempt to score without taking control of the puck. One-Timers are more powerful shots, so use them often for power goals.” Anyone seen Dave Lewis?
-The rest of the new features include: Goalie control, Shootout game, Penalty shots, bench and board checks, Variable player ratings for players on hot or cold streak, saving player records, Flip passes, Reverse-angle replay, Clear the zone, Auto line changes, Tougher computer control, tougher goalies, player profiles with 144 pictures, local organ music, no fighting or blood, and two expansion teams. That is quite the list; it also reinforces the fact that they are not playing '94 in Swingers, because Gretzky never would have bled.

5) Now we get to the Table of Contents… seriously, this frigging manual is monstrous. Because they went through the effort of making a contents page, I am going to utilize it here. Lets jump to:
-Page 19: Skating
“Skating skills are fundamental to good hockey. You need to skate well to check hard, to avoid checks and deke the goalies”
-I agree, but the game pretty much takes care of the skating for us. This should just explain that you need pound the ever living crap out of the C button until your thumb starts aching so you can lay out the opposition.
-Page 23: Penalties
-Just go ahead and rip this page out, you will not be needing it
-Page 29: Scoring
-“One point is awarded per goal.” This is getting a bit elementary I would say. Who is flipping through this thing saying, “I understand the concept of a delayed penalty and my defense is fine, but how many f’n points is a goal worth”
-Page 30-33: Line Changes-This was always a controversial topic. Do you play with line changes on or don’t you? Every group of friends had their way of doing it. As for me, I used to play with the line changes on, now I don’t. However, I must say it still is quite amusing to see a line made up of Gilbert Dionne, Benoit Brunet, and Todd Ewen. Also, 4 pages for line changes? Come on.

-This section could go on forever. They go into extreme detail on every single feature of the game. It is pretty amazing how much the can get out of a section titled “changing and removing goalies”.

6) Next we have the “Rosters and Ratings” section. They go through every single team and list all of the player and team ratings. This is, hands down, the best part. You could spend hours with this thing.
-Worst player in the game: Myles O’Conner of the Devils, with Tony “The Twister” Twist of the Nordiques just slightly worse than Myles at a ranking of 33. This has got to be depressing. Imagine you are Tony Twist's son. You run out to get the game, explain to your friends that your pops is actually part of this wonderful game. Then you realize he is the second worst player in the league. Not only that, out of 100 possible points, he was only given 33. Tony has devoted his life to Hockey, spent his entire childhood practicing day in and day out and Mark Lesser decides he is a 33… I would be livid. The Twister's true talent was not even allowed to be showcased in this game. I remember the Twister throwing down with Adam Oates right around the same time as this game came out. Well Tony, we will give you the respect you deserve here. Watch the Twister in action. (I appologize about the music, apparently Tony Twist fans aren't into Buffett)
-Best player in the game: Mario, he is the only 100. Bourque is a 99, Belfour is a 98, and after them it is goes Molgilny, Yzerman, Oates, LaFontaine, Selanne, Roenick, Gilmour, and then Gretzky.
-That’s right, The Great One is an 87. How can this be? Well in fairness to EA Sports, he is not the easiest player to assign quantitative value too.
-Best teams in the game: Blackhawks, Bruins, Flames, Red Wings, and Penguins.

7) After the credits section, they provide you with 4 blank pages for Notes. It actually says “Notes” on the top. Needless to say, the notes in my manual are just degrading insults about my college roommates.

8) On the back cover we get a little write up on the Emmy Award winning reporter Ron Barr. Barr also takes this time to plug his sports talk radio broadcast, Sports Byline USA. Amazingly, Ron is still the host and chairman of Sports Byline, which is in its 19th year. Good for you Ron.

A Whole Other World?

Recently overheard remark from a co-worker (a woman who works in the sales department with me and sits a few cubes over) on a call with a customer...

“What time is it over there? Do you guys do daylight savings over there on the west coast? It’s like a whole other world out there. I can never remember.”

Are you kidding me?

You Gotta Have Faith


At least she hid her true emotions.

NCAA Got Served

The new clock rules for NCAA Football have been widely ridiculed and deservedly so. I was just sent a link from the Moses email list from Saturday's Wisconsin-Penn State game that completely exposes a loophole in the new clock rules...and yes, I think Paul Maguire was tipped off. He's not smart enough to figure this out on his own.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Two For Tuesday

Just a couple more classic 80's ads to lead us into Tuesday. The first one is for my sister Amy, who loved this ad, and features some tremendous parenting from the father...

And the second one is the notable for the snazzy jingle and the extreme "whiteness" of all parties involved...

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Beck Is Cool

Yes, we all know Beck breaks down walls and continues to be innovative...but when I saw this again on YouTube, it blew me away as much as the first time from SNL two weeks ago:


Weird Al Singing Palindromes

This is just downright out of control, every single line is a palindrome.

"Lisa Bonet Ate No Basil"

Pretty impressive.

Saturday, November 04, 2006

Great Moments In Cinema, Volume I

Let's test YouTube....this new feature will bring us classic moments from the world of film via the online video revolution. First installment is to get us all jazzed up for the imminent release of For Your Consideration, the next Chris Guest production...and yes, he HAS added Ricky Gervais to the cast.


TUNA!!!, Are You Kidding Me?!!!!!

I wish I could find that scene on Youtube, but here is a little tribute to the best addition to this season in my humble opinion:

and of course Call of Duty

Friday, November 03, 2006

The Find of the Century

Okay, I brought up Dana Hersey's The Movie Loft in the previous post. Anyone born before 1980 from Boston knows that The Movie Loft was WSBK TV 38's go-to program outside of the Bruins and the Sox. There was no network affiliation back then. Either you got the game or you got Movie Loft, which had a cold opening of Dana leading us through a loft filled with cinema reels. It was all very dramatic.

Anyway, the Family Ties commercial below has led me to the gem of gems: someone on Youtube has posted a clip of We Don't Knock, another WSBK TV show. As much as it may look like it, this is not a YouTube video blog. This is a bona fide TV program from 1984. The premise: he goes into the Rathskeller in Kenmore Square after leaving Narcissus across the street. I'm so happy we have brought this to the world. I feel like my week is complete.

It gets better:

Rich, versatile, masculine... sophisticated: Dana Hersey....I need to the find Movie Loft opening. I owe it to you.