Monday, September 18, 2006

Weekend reveiew

I hate Auburn. I'm not going to bitch about the officials, since we had our chances and didn't take advantage of them. I'm just happy that Les had the team ready and we put up an awesome effort on the road. We're clearly still a top ten team, and I think the outcome would have been reversed in Baton Rouge. Congrats to Auburn, I hope Florida and Georgia beat 'em!

I'm just at a loss for words with the Saints. Yeah we just played two pretty terrible teams but to come out with wins on the road with THIS defense boggles my mind. I expected 4-5 wins all season from this team. Now with Tampa looking so bad, having three Ws by the bye (week 7) seems very possible. The biggest story yesterday was Brees' ability to come back from that gawd awful start: fumbles on the first two possessions and a pick deep in GB territory on the third. So we spot GB a quick 13-0 lead and all signs point towards our being well on the way to a repeat of the 52-3 annihilation they handed us last year. And yet we turn it around - WITHOUT any gift idiot plays from the aging Brett Favre - and win 34-27. Somehow, after two games, we're 10th in the NFL in total yards per game, 7th in third down conversions, and 6th in fewest penalties (with #s 1 and 2 playing in tonight's game so we may wind up even higher).

And now, some random NFL observations, some of which I'm sure my roommate will pontificate on at length this week:

  • NBC's Sunday Night football pregame show is terrible. The music is more fitted for the Olympics. Bob Costas isn't a good highlight guy - my roommate agrees with me here. Dammit, I just miss PrimeTime.

  • CBS is using the same graphics for NFL and college football, it seems. Wow, way to be original guys.

  • Fox dropped the annoying robot sound from Week One. Thank God. And the halftime graphics which were inexplicably garbage the last couple years are finally gone, and the halftime show is now watchable.

  • I can't believe how bad so many teams are this year, and more than that - the fact that the Saints thus far ain't one of them. I don't know whether these defenses are insanely good or the offenses they're facing are just gawd awful. I guess the Bears and Ravens get the benefit of the doubt for having a proven history, but the Chargers for instance I'm waiting on. The Raidahs - led by former Aint Aaron Brooks - and Titans are by no means juggernaut offenses. I emailed the roomie yesterday (again, he's on an NFL broadcast crew so not here during games) at halftime of the afternoon games, and of the five, there were four shutouts in progress and one in which the trailing team had put up 3. Anyway, thus far in the season we have:
    1. Tampa with 3 points through 2 games
    2. Oakland with 6 points through 2 games
    3. Kansas City missing Al Saunders (OC who went to Washington) much? 10 points vs Cincy at home and then 6 at Denver. Yikes.
    4. Denver, traditional machine on offense, with only 19 points (and one TD) through two games.
    5. Ditto Carolina.

  • I'm glad ESPN gave us the drawings of what Big Ben's inflamed appendix looks like. I was just dying to know, assholes.
  • Monday, September 11, 2006

    Ok Ok Ok, I'm back

    Sorry for the absence through the first couple weeks of the season. Couple quick thoughts:

    1) ESPN Sucks. The graphic this afternoon on the main screen was celebrating how tonight is the greatest day in, like, forever! Because it's football on ESPN! The poll on the main page was even "Are you ready for some football??" with a simple Yes/No answer. Given 90% of the country has already seen their team play, I just find this celebration of MNF idiotic. The self-promotion just has to stop. They dominate televised sports. Now it's just getting annoying. Quit it, idiots. Also, they overcharge for everything, their magazine is too big, and their anchors suck. Of course, EDSBS discussed all of this last year on November 29th, and the thread is still getting comments.
    I have a clearer version of this if you don't believe me, fools.

    2) LSU's performance this year has been beyond anything I could have imagined. I had concerns going in about 1) Offensive line cohesion; 2) Front seven ability to create pressure; 3) Russell cutting out the idiotic decisions; 4) It's Les Miles, do I even have to mention brain-dead coaching?; 5) Ability to seal the deal - which admittedly had been answered emphatically with our season-ending romp of Miami in the Peach Bowl - but who knew how that would carry over?

    We've turned the ball over 5 times this year, on two punt returns vs ULL and a couple fumbles and a pick in the AZ game. So that needs to be cured, and damn quickly. But every single other aspect has been superb. I would like to think that the fumbles will go away against Auburn since we'll be more focused (i.e. all the turnovers vs AZ came after we were up 24-0), but I know better than that.

    Clearly ULL and Arizona aren't teams to use as a measuring stick against most anyone above I-AA ball, but nonetheless given our problems executing in the past I'm all smiles going into the Auburn game. Despite our tremendous talent, I'd chalked Auburn up as a pretty certain loss before the season; now I dare say I have hope that ole Les can pull this off.

    3) I was blown away by the Saints performance versus the Browns on Sunday. I caught 30 seconds of Around the Horn today and they were discussing how great Reggie Bush looked against the Browns. Bill Plaschke mentioned that it's a 5 compared to what he will do, and I have to say I agree. Reggie got a lot of tough yards, which was different than what we were used to seeing out of him in college, but nothing flashy. I suppose from that aspect it was almost a let down. But he was a huge cog in the win for us.

    Nothing to argue with Bush's 120 yards rushing and receiving and another 20 on punt returns, but my biggest props go to Deuce McAllister. I thought he'd lost it prior to the knee injury last year; afterwards, I was certain he was done. After 22 carries for 90 solid yards (i.e. no 50 yarders skewing the average), it appears like Deuce has regained something pretty close to his old form. I think it's safe to say we all knew Reggie could play in this league; what we didn't know is how well Deuce would look in real action. What a relief.

    Still a stud.

    Meanwhile, I suppose it's a testament to how poorly prepared the Browns were that our defense just dominated them in the first half - the Browns didn't get a first down until 28 minutes into the game. Our inability to execute in the redzone made it a closer affair than it should have been given our respective first halves, so hopefully we can work on that.

    Honestly though, I'm not even sure I care if we fix it; my expectation all along has been for a 4 to 5 win season at best. Getting one in the books in week one, on the road, against what seemed to be an up-and-coming squad (at least defensively), is just super. Juuuust super.

    Monday, August 21, 2006


    Good to know we still suck!

    Thursday, August 17, 2006

    JC, for your cat

    Wednesday, August 16, 2006

    Nick Mangold's sister suiting up at OL/DL for her high school

    I would not wish to mess with her.

    Incidentally, we Saints fans were dying for Mangold to fall to us in the 2nd round so that our hearts could be ripped out when Mickey Loomis took, I dunno, another running back or something. Clearly, this is a family that loves football. We Saints types have a good history with Ohio State centers. Well, one actually, Le Charles Bentley, who was the best player on our team the last few years. Definitely was a bummer seeing the news that the Browns lost him for the year.

    Wednesday, August 02, 2006

    Heisman Pundit at Pac-10 Media Day

    HT CFR for the link.

    Hopefully I'm not the only one confused as to why he was able to get a Pac-10 coach (hint: rhymes with Mike Belotti) whose team plays at least 7 games a year in the Pacific Northwest to utter the following:
    "Back East you have regions with wind and rain, so offenses played things a little closer to the vest. Out here, the weather is not an issue, so the offenses can be more open. There are some leagues where you can just play defense and special teams and win, but the Pac-10 isn't one of them. It's not that there is a lack of defense, it's just that the quality of the offenses is just so good." (Emphasis mine.)
    Having lived in Seattle (a city but a few hours' drive north of U of O) for four years, having owned Washington Huskies football season tickets for two of them, and thus by extension having gotten a decent idea of the general weather patterns of the Pacific Northwest, I hereby take the opportunity to declare that I CALL BULLSHIT ON MIKE BELOTTI.

    /end of rant

    Learn your O-Line

    The good folks over at EDSBS did Amurrika the fine favor of getting some actual former lineman dude to explain blocking.

    Part One
    Part Two

    Read it, and revel in the glory that you will be able to design plays on Madden while actually knowing what the hell you're doing.

    SJSU takes Fulmer Cup lead at EDSBS

    The exploits (and if you don't know what the Fulmer Cup is, it's your own damn fault for not reading EDSBS often):
    Enter aspiring Craigslist seller/alleged armed robber and San Jose State WR Ellis T. Jones III, who may have pulled off the single biggest free-standing Fulmer Cup score in the brief history of competition by luring potential internet shoppers off Craigslist with promises of deals and into an apartment complex where Jones allegedly robbed them, tasered them, and in one instance even “trunked” a victim. The robberies, which took place between June 27th and June 30th, involve such a flurry of activity as to suggest not only a rapacious criminal instinct, but an outstanding work ethic, as well:

    Jones was charged Thursday with 13 felony counts including five counts of robbery, four counts of assault for using a Taser gun on some of his victims and one count of kidnapping to commit robbery for allegedly locking one victim in the trunk of a car. He faces up life in prison with the possibility of parole, according to Leonard James, a deputy district attorney with Santa Clara County.

    Holy hell, is employing Jenn Sterger

    Somehow, I've been in general hibernation for the past 3 months and completely missed the fact that SI on campus has hired Jenn Sterger, of FSU Cowgirl fame, to do an occasional mailbag. Among her other missives, get swept up in her analysis of Kyle Wright vs Drew Weatherford, relationship advice, and if she's attracted to dudes who dip.

    What you get for spending $900 grand on some freakin teddy bears

    Good job, dog.

    Wednesday, July 26, 2006

    Comment on NCAA 07

    Who at EA decided the "Jump Snap" button is more useful that being able to cycle backwards through the players before the snap? And not only that that would be more useful, but SO much so that we don't even have a separate controller config option to turn it off? Someone at EA deserves to get hurt reeeealllll bad.

    Open question to the public

    Duke has a linebacker named Michael Tauliili. That last name has 5 vowels out of 8 letters for a 62.5% vowel concentration rate. For any name 5 letters or longer (hence omitting an easy one like, say, Opie), that's got to be a vowel concentration record, no?

    The 2007 NCAA All-Names team

    Link through EDSBS to a random blog. My favorite would have to be LeQuantum McDonald, DL from Baylor.

    Though I-Perfection Harris of Ga Tech who didn't make the list is pretty solid, too.

    Sunday, July 16, 2006

    Only in L.A.

    Well, if the manufacturer routinely stamps the engine size on the car (i.e. SL 500, SL 600, etc.), why not stamp the side of your car with the exact size of your brand new rims? Good times.

    Saturday, July 08, 2006

    Jose Canseco is back, y'all

    Faithful readers of my blog, all four of you (well, four up until I decided to take the offseason off), likely are aware of my former fandom of one roid-raging wife-beating home-run-hitting ballplayer by the name of Jose Canseco. Well, apparently he is back in the minors, and not only THAT, he's doing it as a member of the Long Beach Armada of the Golden Baseball League. That, as you may know, is 30 miles from where I am currently situated. That, as you can guess, means I'll be there sometime this summer reveling in the goldness of the Golden Baseball League, they who brought us back Rickey Henderson and - I think but can't confirm through Google - Oil Can Boyd, among others. Hell, Darrell Evans is even the manager of Long Beach. Good times all around.

    I saw Nacho Libre last night, and a quote from Nacho about his favorite wrestler Ramses pretty much sums up Canseco for me:

    Wednesday, July 05, 2006

    This is the sort of thing that really ticks me off

    We currently have a system of spelling in the English language that, God forbid it, enables certain children (generally of superior intellectual skills) to excel. So hey, why don't we level the playing field by changing the entire language to a phonetic spelling system? That way, the kids who aren't smart enough or don't work hard enough won't be at ANY disadvantage.

    While we're at it, I think 3 x 3 should equal 33. Let's change math too.

    As my bro put it today, "Stupid people always want the mountain brought to them." Amen.

    Tuesday, July 04, 2006

    Sayings I just don't get

    "Definitely maybe." The hell does that mean? Why be cute about it?

    "Have your cake and eat it too." Again, wtf? Who has their cake and doesn't eat it? Who came up with this? He ought to be shot.

    Saturday, April 29, 2006

    Thank you Houston!

    Thursday, March 09, 2006

    Splenda AND Scrubs - in the SAME post!!

    Anyone catch this week's Scrubs, mmm? Best line to me, when the grief counselor Dr. Hedrick got ripped a new one by Cox, didn't even blink, and held up a packet of Splenda and said "God I don't care if these cause cancer, I just love this fake sugar so much!!"

    Love it.

    More Sports Guy, for you Houston types

    Same mailbag as the Peet's/Starbucks routine:
    SG: Hey, Hartford may be dangerous, ugly, uncool, and poorly laid-out … but at least everyone there knows it. Everyone in Houston is in denial. Put it this way: When you ask the concierge of a major hotel in Houston where you should go in the city to walk around, do some sightseeing and kill a couple of hours, and that concierge thinks about it for a few seconds, hems and haws, then refers you to the Galleria Mall and tells you, "That's really about it," then your city sucks to visit. I hate to break it to you.

    On Starbucks v its better competitor Peet's

    From the Sports Guy's mailbag:
    SG: Not since the Dunkin Donuts coffee cake muffin has the country been in this much danger. I gained two pounds just from reading that e-mail. But you know what? I'll never know what the Starbucks breakfast sandwich tastes like, because they opened a Peet's Coffee near my house a few months ago … better coffee, friendlier people behind the counter, food freebies from time to time, the chance to say "large," medium" and small" again, and no crappy music being shoved down my throat? It's a dream come true. I even own my own Peet's debit card. Wait, should I be sharing all of this? Probably not.
    EXACTLY. I order a medium coffee every day at 6am (none of this "tall/grande/venti" bullshit), and get to listen to classical music instead of Sheryl Crow's wailing. The ONLY coffee I find drinkable at Starbucks without cringing is Verona, with Sumatra a distant second. And yeah, I've got the Peet's debit card too. 5% off for each $20 you put on it. I don't even know the names of most Peet's coffee blends, I just had to learn the names of Starbucks' good ones so I wouldn't get coffee on the days they weren't brewing those. Ugh.

    Sunday, March 05, 2006

    On Splenda

    This stuff can turn cat piss into the nectar of the GODS. (I haven't had cat piss, but I've had most of Starbucks' beans, and aside from Verona and perhaps Sumatra, most of them bear a remarkable resemblance to what I would imagine cat piss would taste like.) Anyway, I just bought a 400 count box of the stuff at Ralph's for 15 bucks. Couldn't even wait to hit up Costco for it. Oh well.

    Incidentally, why the hell do people at the grocery store who are carrying baskets instead of pushing carts go up to the checkout line and drop the basket on the floor in front of the line with the handle bars criss-crossed over one another so that I have to bend over and risk substantial injury by uncrossing those bars so that I can then place MY basket neatly inside the other one? Why the hell do you need to make it harder for other people/store workers? Bastadges.

    Wednesday, March 01, 2006

    Best line from Scrubs this week

    Elliott: JD, I really don't want to do this. Can't we just go home and put on our PJs and watch Grey's Anatomy?
    JD: Oh! I really do love that show. It's like they watch our lives, take them, and put them on tv!


    And let's be honest here

    What did the museum think would happen when they offered unlimited martinis for thirty bucks at an art show?

    Setting the Outlook reminder for 10 years from now

    184 proof whisky!

    SEC CHAMPS!!!!

    Thursday, February 23, 2006

    On watching the Olympics, closed-caption style

    I have an iPod which as most of you know gets no radio reception. There are TVs at my gym with the volume off, but as a result of using an iPod I can't tune in to the audio on whatever FM broadcast channel they've chosen. Not only do I not give a rat's ass, I've actually found some amusement the past couple days watching the closed caption commentary come across the screen.

    Yesterday: Curling, Canada v USA

    If you haven't watched curling, and most of us have at least SEEN it once or twice by now, it basically involves a bunch of surprisingly-fit looking C++ programmers wearing fancy shoes that let them slide across the ice while they frantically sweep a broom back and forth in front of a big ass lump of iron (with a handle on it) that one other chap has calmly let flee down a bowling alley. Only the alley is made of ice, and rather than pins at the other end you have a giant bulls-eye. Yesterday, those friendly-looking Canadians managed to place one of said handle-clad iron lumps in the circle towards the end of the match, eliciting the following response from the booth:

    While the Canadians shook hands and probably sipped a cup of tea.


    Earlier, talking about I believe a member of the US team whose father is the coach:
    Booth man A or B: And he looked at [insert Team USA member name here] and told him to follow his dreams and just keep curling.

    If you are like me, your reaction to said statement was something more or less on the order of WTF? Follow your dreams? Really, kiddo? Couldn't you have at least dreamt of becoming lead driver for the New York Municipal Waste Management service?

    Today: Figure skating, Boy and Girl from Canada in the booth along with Mary (?) and Scott (? Former figure skater, looks like someone famous I just can't recall the face). Boy and Girl from Canada had done a routine the other day which culminated in one of the more painful ass-plant-on-the-ice scenes in recent memory. So what does USA network decide to do? Air the entire routine, beginning to end, while badgering Team Canada the whole time about whether they've seen the replays yet. The general gist of the exchange:
    Mary or Scott: Guess what? We are going to show the replay of your amazing ass-bite from the other day. So have you guys watched this yet?
    Canada Girl: Oh God, noooo
    Canada Boy: Kill me
    Me: God bless you, USA Network
    Canada Girl: Oh, I don't think I can watch the end of this. I am going to have to turn away
    Canada Boy: I can't handle this. Hold Me.
    (Replay continues to run, we're a full minute into it and the Canadians are skating beautifully)
    Mary or Scott, some paraphrasing here: Man you guys were IN THE ZONE!* How devastated must you be, four years of preparation for what we're about to see, which is Joe Theismann-injury-like in its sheer awesomeness??
    * Note: The "in the zone" phrase was actually used by a commentator to describe their performance up until the massive fall
    Canada Girl: Yeah, I pretty much don't remember anything about this.
    (Replay continues, about a minute and a half in, the bust occurs, eliciting an "OOOF" from me and no one else, indicating that I'm probably the only one watching figure skating, but it's ok because I'm bigger than you.)

    Here's the best I can give you:





    We are now officially under three weeks.

    Monday, February 20, 2006


    Didn't rain on me the whole weekend, so I got that going for me. But when your sinuses are giving you issues thanks to an NYC blizzard from a week ago, blasting through the skies at 600mph in a pressurized metal tube can wreak havoc on your head. Almost makes you want to curl up in the fetal position in the middle of the aisle and just take the chance that the guy sitting next to you isn't an air marshal and even still would only maybe shoot you in the knee which could be a positive thing since it'd take your mind off the sinuses.


    Also, Mac and Jack's makes my bowling score get progressively worse. I actually got beaten in game two by a female who in game one had had a score of THREE through the first 8 frames. I don't mind getting beaten by a girl, but I'd rather have it happen while I at least broke 100. Or 80. No more beer while bowling for me. Or maybe no more bowling in Lucky brand blue jeans. No breathing room, see. Gotta rock the Abercrombie baggies from now on in any sort of social athletic attempts in environs in which hot girls abound.

    How I Met Your Mother, and mixes

    I just watched the New Year's Eve rerun of How I Met Your Mother, where Doogie Howser had his "psyche-up mix" CD, which begins with Bon Jovi's "You Give Love a Bad Name." And that got me thinking about my mixes, seeing as I made a hair band mix recently. And how when I watched High Fidelity, I thought John Cusack thought about the whole idea of a mix wayyyyy too damn much. But then I realized that some of my mixes really start to suck wind around track 12, while others I made really for tracks 1 and 2 and then stuck a bunch of other junk on there so as not to waste an entire CD, but I needed songs 1 and 2 in my car so I added the 16 crap songs anyway instead of really thinking about it. But so many of them make me happy only for about two weeks or so. And why is that? I'm thinking that when making an alternative mix, it's really hard to start it out well because let's be honest here, how are you ever going to top "Smells Like Teen Spirit" being the #1 track on your Nevermind CD? Might as well just pop that one in instead. I'm guessing Jamie will have his Pearl Jam thoughts, but I really don't think anyone tops Nevermind with that one. I need to become a better connoisseur of the mixage.

    By the way, Janani, I thought about doing your "4 jobs I've had, etc." tag from a month ago that I've generally been too lazy or intentionally forgotten to do, but then I clicked on Mike Toole's website since you tagged him in the hopes he was reading. Well I'll be damned, did you notice that your boy actually did it? He has indeed fulfilled your wishes! Oh, he didn't attribute it to you. But still, MAYBE.

    Monday, February 13, 2006

    Can someone please tell me...

    ...where the Muslim Street manages to find so many Denmark flags? I mean, can you stroll down to your local Tehrani Costco and pick up a flag of choice? Are there street vendors hawking the hated-nation-of-the-moment paraphernalia for burning purposes? Or are there just enough unemployed seamstresses sitting around the cities that they can fire 'em up at anytime to make very official-looking flags? I mean, a lot of those US flags I always see burning look like pretty decent quality stuff, not like they just spray painted a bedsheet or something. AND by the way, in these fits of rage do the prices of said paraphernalia go through the roof? A run on Danish flags, if you will? I imagine there's a killing to be made - pun intended - in that line of work.

    I'm sure you all saw the "Freedom go to hell" and "Europe learn your lesson from 9/11" type signs that were flying all over the place. Oh but let us not forget, though, Islam means peace!

    Trying to be more regular about this

    Been a little busy lately, and now confined in NYC for a couple conference which just so HAPPENED to coincide with the greatest snowstorm in NYC history. How does this happen? #4 or so on the list was when I was out here in Feb 2003. And of course, I was out here on a work trip on 9/11. How nothing happened during the three month stretch I was out here in 2004 (well, Connecticut, really) is beyond me. But I'm thinking I shouldn't be coming back out to NYC much, unless I were ever offered tickets to a Yankees-Sox game.

    Meanwhile, walking on the sidewalks here can be a terrible decision. It's not all THAT cold out right now, probably high 20s/low 30s, but no preciptation and actually not all that windy. So I figured I'd walk the 15 streets up from my hotel to my dinner meeting. Well, problem in NYC at night is it's tough to tell the difference between wet pavement at an intersection and a puddle that happens to be icy and glistening and looking like pavement. So once your foot is seven inches underwater, you are miffed and trudging down the street in search of the nearest place to pay $14 for a new pair of socks.

    Which, naturally, you got all wet on the way back, as well. Ugh.

    Anyway, NYC is fun and all, but I'd really like to go ahead and get back out to L.A.

    Sunday, January 22, 2006

    Best Phil Simms comment of the first half

    "Joey Porter doesn't go for no play action fake."

    Apparently Phil Simms didn't paid no attention in grammar school.

    Monday, January 16, 2006

    Fantasy Fashion League

    Who ya got? Kate Spade or Louis? Manolo or Jimmy Choo?

    Sunday, January 15, 2006

    Real men of genius

    Solving a Rubik's cube in 11 seconds. Wow.

    Sunday, January 08, 2006

    Matthew McConaughey

    I don't know how to spell his last name. Anyway, on the Terry Awards (Bradshaw's year end awards), the most famous Horns fan around proclaimed that Priest Holmes was Ricky Williams' backup at Texas. 'Fraid ole Matt needs to get his history straight, as it was the other way around.

    Friday, January 06, 2006

    Does anyone know how to backup a blog?

    What's the best option? Not finding much on a quick google search so I'll do it over the weekend...but in the meantime if you have any suggestions, I'd appreciate it. Thanks.

    Thursday, January 05, 2006

    Best thing about the Horns' win for this fan... that now my Aints have a legitimate shot at owning the Reggie Bush pick, which will have absolutely enormous trade value (seeing as we can't afford to cut Deuce to pay him, and we can't afford to just sign him as an alternate back - he will not be a Saint).

    Funny how ONE GAME can so dramatically alter the popular perception of two players. And it's not like Bush had a bad game - 180 very quiet yards, other than another Superman touchdown. And Bush's image probably hasn't suffered, it's just that Vince has overtaken him, and in terms of the "HOLY SHIT" scale, deservedly so.

    But in terms of NFL prospects? Craig James made a postgame comment on how he'd not been sold on Vince Young as an NFL player at all before the game, but now one should forget all about it and anoint him the Next Big Thing. A 30+ game career, a full season of being entirely in the spotlight, mostly because of his superhuman feats in a Rose Bowl LAST YEAR - forget it. Any opinion you had of Vince based on that 30 game stretch should be tossed in the gutter and this guy is immediately can't-miss.

    How many times did Vince throw the ball more than 20 yards downfield? Not to knock Vince, my intention is to knock Craig James, but I think it's a bit irrational to do a complete re-evaluation of a collegiate athlete's career/talent/attributes based on one single game, no matter how big the game or how otherworldly the performance (EVEN in this case, which was arguably the greatest single game performance in the history of college football).

    And the thing is - NO ONE will argue with the Houston Texans now if they take Vince Young over Reggie Bush now. He's the hometown guy, the entire state of Texas would be lining up to deliver him their extra kidney should he ever need it, David Carr just isn't working out all that well anyway, and Domanick Davis has generally been a solid option for the Texans in the backfield. So, Carr and Bush or Young and Davis? Honestly, the world won't fault them for taking either path.

    So thank you, Vince Young, for potentially giving my Aints some much-needed extra ammunition when it comes to stacking our cupboard come April.

    Incidentally, did anyone else know Vince's accent is as thick Southern as it is? I've seen interviews with the guy, but the postgame comment "THE CRYSTAH BAWL IS COMIN BACK TAH AWSTIN TEXUS BAYYYYBEE" sorta caught me off guard. Pow Wow's disco baw (Paul Wall/disco ball) type stuff. (That link is to Paul Wall's website on the WIDE WORLD WEB. Hah.)

    One more thing!

    Be sure to read this EDSBS recap of the game, complete with requisite commentary on the fantasticity (I voted for W, remember, the whole making up words part, thanks) of the Texas dancing girls in chaps. Orson, who is undoubtedly the most eloquent CFB blogger on the planet (even allowing for the UF blue jean shorts, I'm just glad he's SEC country), puts it so:
    A fine institution,and thanks to a mix of large scale population dynamics, flexible academic standards, and widespread access to modern dentistry, a wellspring of hot ass. Fine decision, Doug.
    Well said, sir.

    [Update: Pete Fiutak of CFN also comments on the Texas cheer squad's outfits. Dance team, whatever.]


    Seriously, how the hell does it not only know shit I might like, but shit I already HAVE which I didn't order from them (or any accessories)? I get onto Amazon and they tell me I might like a Samsung 56" DLP (own it) or a Motorola Razr (own it).

    Whatever, I shall bask in the glory of knowing I bought my Razr a year ago unlike all you posers who didn't buy it till now. Pfffttttt. It was actually a somewhat exclusive club for the first six months or so that I owned it, and then the first time I noticed its widespread-ed-ness (I voted for W, I can make up words, natch) was among LSU fans who travelled to the Arizona State game in September. And I live in Los Angeles! How devestating.

    No matter how much I try, with technology I can't help but get annoyed when prices decline six seconds after Best Buy's 30-day price match expires. Even ten months later, too! Lord help me. I'm a relatively cheap bastard. I suppose that cuts me out well for this value investing bidniss.

    Oh, and back to Amazon. Seriously, they've got feelers in your living room now. Look out.


    What was great about that game, was at 38-26 SC with 8 minutes left, tradesports figured the odds of a UT win to be 8%. Seemed you'd just be betting on a single Horns stop and the simple realization from the UT coaching staff that SC had not been able to stop Vince Young at all, and that the last drive ended in only a field goal because of a poor play call on 3rd and 5 deep in SC territory.

    Anyway, thrilled to see the Horns win. One great recurring theme through the season I noticed was that whenever had a vote up involving USC losing a game or winning the title, invariably the state of Louisiana (on their SportsNation map) would have about the highest percentage of anti-USC votes, sometimes even surpassing that of the home state of the team USC was up against in the poll. While I'm not nearly as negatively disposed towards USC as they are, I was getting sick of the endless "Three Pete" talk bandied about by the ESPN types, and as such love to just consider where the BCS crystal ball of years past currently sits:

    98 Tennessee
    99 FSU
    00 Oklahoma
    01 Miami
    02 Ohio State
    03 LSU
    04 USC
    05 Texas

    Not only do I not see USC three times on there, I don't see them twice.

    Here's a thread with comments from the incomparable folks at EDSBS, which contains some excellent suggestions on what ESPN's Mark May can go do to himself. (Seriously, 05 Trojans 49, 91 Huskies 14? What the hell is he smoking?)

    I'm alive, so here's a quick LSU take

    40-3 was insane. I know we're not 5 and a half touchdowns better than Miami. They threw in the towel after awhile, and it likely would not have been nearly the rout it was had Coker had some balls and gone for a 4th and inches (rather than punting since they were stopped the previous drive on a 4th and short).

    But just for kicks, I like to get goosebumps by staring at the drive chart from the game, just to see Miami's final seven drives:

    3 plays, -5 yards, Punt
    3 plays, 0 yards, Punt
    3 plays, 0 yards, Punt
    3 plays, -5 yards, Punt
    3 plays, 9 yards, Punt
    3 plays, -8 yards, Punt
    3 plays, 5 yards, Punt

    That is the very definition of dominant defense. Great way to enter the offseason.

    Thursday, December 22, 2005

    Running shoes

    So I spent $130 on a pair of New Balance running shoes at Frontrunner's, thinking that as it is the shit as far as running stores go, they'd hook me up. Well, my four year old Brooks Addiction (or something like that) cost $20 less and are still more comfortable. Maybe I need to try insoles or something, but how the hell are you supposed to tell if a shoe is going to be as comfortable after an hour of cardio as it does walking around a store?

    They didn't have my old Brooks at Frontrunners, nor did they have any Brooks shoes at all in wide sizes, so I had to settle for NB.

    Buying comfy shoes is a pain in the ass.

    ESPN's holiday cards

    These are hilarious. I like Manny's and Lance Armstrong's. Michael Vick'

    Sunday, December 18, 2005

    Gus Johnson

    Chirag, is Artose Pinner's first name pronounced Ar-toze, or Ar-toose? Because your boy Gus keeps calling him Artoose. Anyway, with the swings of emotion Johnson goes through calling even a 1 yard run play, I keep hoping he'll flip out and accidentally refer to him as "Artoose Detoose."

    Book it.

    Saturday, December 17, 2005

    Random stuff

    1) What the hell is up with random people taking the time to shit talk on my blog? Jesus Christ!

    2) Sorry Jesus, didn't need you, just making an exclamation. Feel free to go back to what you were doing.

    3) Macy's has LOADS of cashmere and it's 62% off. The tag on the rack says 50% off, but the register marked those items 55% off, then they added an extra 15% off that number for some reason. Wasn't a mistake either. One of the better deals around.

    Incidentally, I drove 45 miles this morning to go to a mall in the OC called South Coast Plaza. That thing is huge. And it's got everything - from Versace to Macy's Men's Store to Sears - but not hot girls. What the hell? I thought this is California.

    Also, very weak selection of running shoes. One Foot Locker which absolutely sucks. Once again, what the hell? I thought I this is California.

    4) King Kong, killing me.

    5) I'm in the semifinals of my fantasy football money league, and my opponent randomly decided it was time to pick up New England's defense this week. New England, one of the worst fantasy defenses year to date, promptly goes out and pitches a shutout with seven sacks, racking up 20 points for my opponent. Naturally.

    6) [Edit: basically I do not like the way my apartment complex operates. The language offended some folks so I had to take it down.]

    7) Chirag, knower of all things football: a few years ago, one of the "Madden" editions included the following ref call on some personal fouls: "Personal Foul, he's giving him the business!" I never could understand what the hell the ref was saying, till Chirag pointed out to me a few days ago that some ref several years ago didn't know what to say and said those exact words during a game call. It always bugged me, and now I may lay that annoyance to rest! Good times.

    Thursday, December 15, 2005

    God damn Kong

    Looks like I was wrong on Kong. $9.7MM on opening day. Maybe it somehow turns in a huge weekend but they'll need some kinda advertising blitz to pull off this $100MM in five days business. At this point if it keeps going like this they'll be lucky to hit $75MM. Only Shrek 2 pulled in a weak Wednesday and went on to rake in over $100MM.

    KK could still pull in huge worldwide final numbers, but that won't be worth a damn thing on the Tradesports contract. Funny thing is, Titanic had very weak numbers in its opening week but grew from there (actually dropped from #1 at one point but was so strong that it took back over at #1 because people kept going). All time, Titanic has the highest gross ever for a movie in each of its 4th week, 5th, 6th, 7th, and 8th week. Pretty sick, huh? EVERYONE is coming back from this movie and loving it. So I imagine it will have huge staying power.

    Will be interesting to see what went wrong with this one. Perhaps people just weren't really aware that it was opening yesterday.

    I'll wait till Friday's box office take to officially declare this bet dead. But Tradesports right now is giving it a 25% shot of making it.

    I'm sure all four of you faithful readers are just thrilled to be reading this shit. Whatever, not like you want to hear about the Pasta Roni I cooked tonight. (BTW, that stuff just never looks like it does on the recipe on the back of the box, does it? Still was quite edible though. For me at least.)

    Wednesday, December 14, 2005

    Who thinks King Kong banks over $100MM in its first five days?

    I do stocks for a living. Essentially we analyze numbers and shit and try to decide if the market is pricing things correctly. So I've never done this for movies before, and I figure what the hell?

    Through history, not a lot of movies have grossed over $100MM in their first five days at the box office. That said, 11 of the 13 which have accomplished it have done so since 2002. Half of those are Star Wars or Lord of the Rings.

    Tradesports is currently offering a contract which allows you to wager on whether or not Kong hits $100MM in its first five days. As I write this the bid is 20 and the ask is 55. A wide spread, but even hitting the 55 bid gives the possibility for a decent profit. So what do I think?

    King Kong is opening in 3,567 theaters, a lower number than any of those top 13 except two of the Star Wars flicks and Passion of the Christ. It's not a huge difference versus the average, perhaps 3% or so, but that could make all the difference. It is, however, the highest screen count (7,500) ever for a Universal release, and they're trying to temper expectations down to the level of the first Lord of the Rings, which grossed about $75MM in its first five days. Of course they're not going to overpromise on this one, and I'm sure they're inwardly hoping for $100MM at the very least - it is clear that $75MM will be an absolute bottom for this thing, as simple inflation since the original LOTR's release in 01 would indicate. Further, Peter Jackson was a relative unknown in 2001 (at least to the masses), but after the Rings series his name sells.

    Even further, everyone and their mother has given this thing a glowing review, adding even more to the hype that is sure to surround this release.

    The movie geeks at Box Office Mojo are projecting $82MM for King Kong - over the weekend ONLY. So we get an extra two days. IF they're off by 10%, and you can check their historical accuracy here, KK would still only need $25MM over today and tomorrow in order to make it through the $100MM barrier. That would be a bit tough, but certainly doable, especially since tonight's numbers will be an enormously inflated Wednesday total simply from the hype leading up to this. In fact six films have actually accomplished the $25MM single day mark on a Wednesday.

    If you dig on the Box Office Mojo forecast history linked above, you'll see that the audience underestimated Potter and Narnia's recent releases, and it's a good bet they're underestimating this one as well. Even still, if I were long this contract I'd be happy with an $82MM weekend, leaving only $18MM needed today and tomorrow.

    Oh what fun it is to ride...yada yada yada! (By the way, in case you hadn't figured it out yet, I am suggesting that going long this contract would be the best bet. If you have to pay 75 cents or more for it, I wouldn't do it, but at coin-flip odds or better? No question.)

    By the way, did you guys know that Andy Serkis, aka Gollum, is playing King Kong??

    Update on Bears-Vikes convergence

    A couple weeks ago I threw out the idea of shorting the Bears to win the NFC North at 83 cents and going long the Vikes at 17 cents, based on their respective schedules in the following three weeks. Since then, The Bears have gone 2-1 (wins over Tampa and Green Bay, and a loss to Pittsburgh) while the Vikes have expectedly gone 3-0.

    As I didn't expect the Bears to beat Tampa, this threw a bit of a wrench in the argument. That said, the Vikes held up their end of the bargain and as it stands, the Bears need to lose to either the Falcons at home this week or the Packers at Lambeau next week (neither is likely, in my opinion) and the Vikes need to beat the Steelers at home AND the Ravens on the road, in order to set up a winner-take-all Week 17 clash between the Vikes and Bears at the Metrodome.

    All that said, the trade actually has made money thus far if you put it on. You could have sold that spread at 66 cents and can now buy it back at 53. It's too bad; had the Buccaneers been able to connect on a 27 yard field goal late in the 4th, that game would have gone to OT with Tampa having plenty of momentum after a late surge. And the spread on the trade would likely be a lot closer to 20. Ahh well, it was a fun exercise in market psychology, with the market clearly having undervalued the ability of Brad Johnson to deliver against a very weak schedule (Browns, Lions, and Rams).