Saturday, November 28, 2009

10 things I think I think

With apologies to SI’s Peter King.

Saying “if you have any information regarding this crime, please call the police” at the end of a story is an invitation to have people call the police and repeat the details of the story they just saw.

I think this college football season has been one of the most boring I can remember.

Because I enjoy it, FOX’s Lie to Me is sure to be cancelled soon. (See SportsNight for another example.)

Jon and Kate Plus 8’s publicist deserves some kind of lifetime achievement award for the amount of time they’ve been in the ‘news’ this year.

The fact that Howie Long is a spokesman for Chevrolet (or any company for that matter) is the biggest single indicator of the decline of American civilization.

Dan Brown’s The Lost Symbol wasn’t as good as either The DaVinci Code or Angels and Demons, and I’m apparently one of the few who enjoys when Brown’s characters spend three pages explaining the symbolism of some piece of artwork.

I need to update my blog more often.

The fact that Dr. Dre is a pitchman for Dr Pepper makes me feel better about drinking it. After all, he is a doctor. But the fact that Gene Simmons (a.k.a. Dr. Love) also endorses it makes me think twice about the whole thing.

I hope “and the Funky Bunch” were able to find work after Marky Mark left.

I think time travel would only be useful so that we can go back and grill dinosaur meat.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Katie Casey was baseball mad . . .

Had the fever and had it bad.
Just to root for the home town crew,
Ev'ry cent

Katie blew.
On a Saturday her young beau called to see if she'd like to go
To see a show, but Miss Kate said "No, I'll tell you what you can do:"

Take me out to the ball game,
Take me out with the crowd;
Buy me some peanuts and Cracker Jack,
I don't care if I never get back.
Let me root, root, root for the home team,
If they don't win, it's a shame.
For it's one, two, three strikes, you're out,
At the old ball game.

I'd just like to submit that a finer song has never been written.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Being sick sucks

That is all.

Ok, not entirely all. It sucks even worse when your son is with his grandparents and you can finally go out, but can't because you're sick.

Now, that is all.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Are you experienced?

A few years ago I had the opportunity to go to The Masters with my brother. Neither of us are what you would call golf aficionados. In fact, if not for SportsCenter, I wouldn't be able to tell you any golfer's name other than Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson and David Duvall (and only Duvall because I have a friend with the same name.) I can think of a dozen people I know who would have appreciated the opportunity to go see one of the world's premiere golf tournaments, but I couldn't pass up the opportunity to go, especially because passes to The Masters are so hard to come by and there's no telling if/when I'd ever get to go again. (I ended up going again the next year, but at the time had no idea I'd have that opportunity.)

After watching golf in person for eight hours or so, I realized a couple things. One, you probably shouldn't be allowed to watch golf in person if you don't know which hole you're watching. And two, golf is boring to watch in person. On television, you can skip from hole to hole and see what's going on all over the course. Unless you're Usain Bolt, you're not going to do that in person. In person, you pick a hole (or two if you get to the right spot to watch) and take everything in from there. Roars go up from the crowd across the course and you're left wondering what happened over there. Of course, were you to have been there, the excitement would have happened where you'd left from.

With the advent and proliferation of high definition television, watching golf from the comfy confines of your home is infinitely better than watching it from the course. Better views of the holes, more access to the course, more comfortable seating, cheaper beer, no port-a-potties and no traffic  make the idea of actually going to the course seem like a terrible idea. The same holds true for most events. Why fight the traffic, spend far too much on parking, pay for overpriced ballpark food, get sunburned/frostbitten (your weather may vary) and then fight the traffic to get home when you could just watch the game naked on your couch (your house rules may vary)?

I mention this because I recently spent 21 hours in a car over three days to go see U2 in concert. There's no rational reason to spend that long in a car for a three-hour concert, even if it is U2. I mean, I've got their music on my iPod and can listen to it whenever I want, so why spend $65 to see them. It's the same reason people put up with all the hassles of going to the Masters or any other sporting event they could just as easily watch on television - you do it for the experience, the "I was there" feeling that you get listening to your favorite band with 71,000 of your newest friends. That's something you can't get listening to music while walking your dog.

Amazingly, even though the Georgia Dome was essentially sold out, the band managed to somehow make it feel like a (somewhat) intimate setting thanks to a stage design that allowed them to face any direction in the dome. The 360 degree video board above the stage also helped create the illusion of closeness, even if you were watching a giant television to get a closer view of the action on stage.

Some highlights of the show for me included:
Being reminded just how good a song "Elevation" is.
"Beautiful Day" which may be the second best song U2 has ever written
"One" which is, undoubtedly, their best song
"Sunday Bloody Sunday" and "Pride (In the Name of Love)"

ESPN's Erik Kuselias, during their radio fundraiser to fight cancer, would regularly encourage his listeners to bid on the experiences more than the memorabilia they were auctioning off. For example, he thinks it would be better to spend a day with the Baseball Tonight crew before, during, and after a show than it would to get an autographed baseball from your favorite player. Sure, the ball would be cool and you could display it in your office or home, but Kuselias believes, and I agree, that the memories of an experience are worth more than any ball could be.

Now if I could just experience the Cubs winning the World Series, I could die in peace.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

A little bit of this, a little bit of that

Today's thoughts are best enjoyed while listening to Michelle Branch

South of the Border is singlehandedly keeping the billboard industry alive in South Carolina.

Every time I go to Atlanta, I'm reminded how much I hate driving in Atlanta.

At some point, the kids on How I Met Your Mother have to get sick of listening to their dad's long-winded story and just go ask their mom, right?

The only thing better than tickets to a sold-out event is free tickets to a sold-out event.

I would not want to play poker with the guy on 'Lie to Me.'

The arrival of the baseball playoffs means I'm going to miss a lot of sleep over the next few weeks.

Jon Stewart is the only sane man left in an otherwise insane world.

U2 puts on a great concert (a blog about my experience at their Atlanta show coming soon.)

Baseball Playoff Picks (One day after they started):
Division Series:
Cardinals over Dodgers
Phillies over Rockies
Yankees over Twins
Angels over Red Sox

Championship Series:
Cardinals over Phillies
Yankees over Angels

World Series:
Yankees over Cardinals

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Not as disgusting as I used to be

NBC's The Biggest Loser is back for its . . . let's say 26th edition and the fact that I know this makes me sad. Don't get me wrong, I'm happy for the people losing weight and generally making their lives better. I'm just not thrilled that it happens on my television each Tuesday.

You see, my wife works at a gym on a college campus. She's also a personal trainer and has designed and implemented her own Biggest Loser programs for students and faculty, so the allure of the show is too much for her to pass up. So for two hours each week, I get to watch people exercise. Actually, that's not entirely true, we get to watch people exercise for about an hour, spend a good 15 minutes doing various product placement advertisements within the show, and another 45 minutes watching people stand on an apparently broken scale. (What kind of digital scale fluctuates between losing 35 pounds and gaining 54 before settling on what actually happened?)

What it ultimately boils down to is that I'm far too much like the Seinfeld characters than I'd like to admit. If you recall, in the series finale, the four make fun of a fat guy getting robbed.

Jerry: Well, there goes the money for the lipo.
Elaine: See, the great thing about robbing a fat guy is it's an easy getaway. You know? They can't really chase ya!
George: He's actually doing him a favor. It's less money for him to buy food.

Yeah, that's me when I watch The Biggest Loser. I know I should feel bad, and I'd never actually say things like that in a group of people  (at least not a group of people I didn't know well), but when contestants on the show say things like "I left a large part of me at home," I can't help but think to myself "you know, if you left a large part of yourself at home, you wouldn't need to be on this show."

However, I do find myself watching for one reason . . . I want to be able to cheer for the woman who is going to be the hottest when they finally do lose the weight. (You can call me shallow, but I think we've pretty well established that fact in the paragraph above.) Were I a single guy, I'd definitely want to date someone who goes on that show because you know she'd be hot when she finished (well, maybe not as hot as Alison Sweeney, but still probably pretty hot.)

So for the next three months, I get to watch a bunch of overweight people slowly become less overweight, then (as John Kruk said on a NutriSystem commercial) less disgusting then they used to be, then . . . well, eventually they get to the attractive/hot stage. 

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

If I were King of the World

Note: This was originally written for another blog that never got off the ground.

I’d finally have a legitimate reason to get a moat.

DJ Jazzy Jeff would not be forgotten.

The Designated Hitter would be abolished.

People who bother/annoy/irritate me would be sent to Croatia.

However, the possibility of being put to death would still be an option.

SportsNight would still be on the air.

Facebook status updates related to politics, religion or the like would be frowned upon.

All the current kings of countries would be upset at their loss of power and prestige.

Sporting events would not be able to end in a tie.

I’d build a tree fort in my yard.

Cobie Smolders would know who I am.

I would totally bring back the whole ‘Brides give themselves to the king first on their wedding night’ thing, but only for the really hot ones.

My wife still wouldn’t find that previous one funny.

Meatloaf (the singer, not the food) would be forced to tell the world what it is he won’t do for love.

I’d still be a loyal subject of He-Man, who is Master of the Universe.

I’d provide greater transparency into the process of becoming king. (As we all know, the Lady of the Lake holds aloft ‘Excalibur,’ signifying by divine providence that I, Luke, am to be King of the Britons . . . err, world.)

I could buy a ‘Toad the Wet Sprocket’ at any convenience store (Not the album, but an actual ‘Toad the Wet Sprocket’).

All those girls who ignored me in high school would suddenly be all like “Hey, Luke, remember me? We went to high school together. So you’re King of the World. That’s cool. Can you (perform random favor likely having to do with an ex-boyfriend or someone they have a grudge against?”) I’d be all like “Yeah, I could do that, but since you were a stuck-up b!%$^ in high school, I’m going to do the opposite of that just to spite you.”

On a related note, I’d apparently become a bit of a jerk.

Right Said Fred’s I’m Too Sexy would be Earth’s new planetary anthem.
(Which assumes it’s not the current planetary anthem and I’m not totally convinced it isn’t.)

Anne Hathaway would know who I am, she’d ignore me at parties, but she’d know who I was.

People would be working around the clock to explain to me why it’s called a ‘house party’ and not just a ‘party.’

The McRib would be a permanent menu item at McDonalds.

A grand jury would be empanelled to investigate the couple of guys who were up to no good in Will Smith’s neighborhood who caused one little fight, causing his mom to get scared and told him he was moving with auntie and uncle in Bel Air.

I would demand to meet the person who only needs three licks to get to the tootsie roll center of a tootsie pop and make them demonstrate it nightly on a world stage.

Festivus would be a global holiday.

Scientists would find out how they crammed all that graham and if it turns out it was all a marketing ploy, those responsible would be executed right after the tootsie pop guy performed.

Sir Mix-A-Lot would be formally knighted.

A commission would be set up to find a way to bring ALF back from planet Melmac to Earth where he would be adopted as my family pet.

My current pet would not appreciate ALF’s sense of humor.

Carrie Underwood would know who I am, she wouldn’t give me the time of day, but she’d at least recognize my name.

The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles would be officially renamed ‘Ninja Turtles’ as they would be approaching their mid-to-late 30s and the mutant thing would be fairly obvious.

I’d follow up with the Barenaked Ladies to see if they really did all the things they said they’d do if they had a million dollars.

Fat, drunk and stupid would be a way to go through life.

People would remember the non-Keanu Reeves guy’s name from Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure.

I’d have to be well-versed in the popular culture of other countries to be able to make cynical comments about their interests.

Mr. Jones and me would tell each other fairy tales while we stare at the beautiful women.

Zach and Kelly would end up together.
(It turns out they did get married in a made-for-tv movie, but as we all know, Saved by the Bell officially ended with the graduation episode. Tori never happened. You hear me. TORI NEVER HAPPENED.)

While we’re at it, all references of Saved by the Bell: The New Class would be removed from the planet and anyone alluding to them in any way would be sent to Croatia. (I don’t support censorship, but come on, that was an abomination that made Cool as Ice seem worthy of a lifetime achievement award for cinema).

Women would be required to wear these at the beach.

Adriana Lima would know who I was, she still wouldn’t find me attractive, but she’d have to at least say hello.

An investigation would be launched to explain how Optimus Prime was killed in the animated “Transformers: The Movie” film, but was alive and well in the non-animated “Transformers” movie.

My wife would get her wish of meeting Stephen Colbert.

I would find that damn Nigerian Prince with all the money and tell him to quit emailing me.

I wouldn’t feel out of place at parties when people talk about 24 or Lost.

The hunting of those driving the God-awful pick-up trucks with the mufflers removed in a pathetic attempt to compensate for their ‘shortcomings’ would be lawful. To encourage such hunting, the person who gets the most in the first year of my reign becoming third in line to the throne after myself and my son. (Why yes, someone in my neighborhood owns one of those trucks and regularly uses it to make as much noise as possible in a neighborhood with a 15 mph speed limit, often waking my son up from his nap. Why do you ask?)

College graduations would involve free beer and strippers, preferably from the undergraduate class at the school.

Water fountains would flow with Guinness, and not that crappy 250th anniversary stuff, but the good stuff.

People could freely admit to liking Hootie and the Blowfish without fear of social scorn.

Jon Stewart would have an official position as “Advisor to the King.” I’m not sure what he’d do, exactly, but he’d do something important.

I’d still have to do whatever my wife tells me to do.