I'm packing up shop for the year. Muchas gracias to everyone who's read and commented throughout 2007. It was a lot of fun. Come on back for an even better 2008.
Saturday, December 29, 2007
Tuesday, December 25, 2007
"Today ... is Christmas! There will be a magic show at zero-nine-thirty! Chaplain Charlie will tell you about how the free world will conquer Communism with the aid of God and a few Marines! God has a hard-on for Marines because we kill everything we see! He plays His games, we play ours! To show our appreciation for so much power, we keep heaven packed with fresh souls! God was here before the Marine Corps! So you can give your heart to Jesus, but your ass belongs to the Corps! Do you ladies understand?"
- Gunnery Sargeant Hartman
Happy Birthday to Jesus too.
Monday, December 24, 2007
And all through the Interwebs,
I'm the only one blogging,
all others are with family and friends.
Here's a few things going through my head as I watch the highlight of NORAD's year.
In Defense of Scrooge 1 and In Defense of Scrooge 2- Some interesting takes on how ol' Ebenezer got a bad rap. Personally, I think it's curious how people spend all year pinching every penny, touting big business, rooting for how great capitalism and social Darwinism is, bemoaning Scrooge, etc. but come Christmas time they temporarily put that aside, whip out their philanphropic side and make an effort to be the most giving souls on Earth. How about showing that all year round?
A note on Peace on Earth: If we really had Peace on Earth, do you have an idea how many people would be unemployed? We wouldn't need a military, military contractors, military lobbyists, supporters, etc. We wouldn't spend our money on weapons and radars and missles and the like. We would have countless more unemployed youthes wandering our streets, washing our windshields, begging on streetcorners, or resorting to a life of crime. Do we really want that? So next time you wish for Peace on Earth, think of the soldiers, airmen, sailors, or Marines whose very livelihood depends on a certain amount of unpeaceful chaos.
Speaking of conflict, William Loren Katz of Counterpunch.org remembers the Christmas Eve 1837 battle between the Seminole Indians and the U.S. military. It was one of the first victories for the Seminole Nation and an important milestone in their reputation as the "Unconquered Tribe". (Note: My esteemed alma mater makes a big deal of the whole "Unconquered" thing.)
Anyway, I'll be back tomorrow with a special toast and a big announcement, but in the meantime, hopefully Santa is good to one and all and here's hoping his little buddy Black Pete doesn't show up and kick your ass.
Sunday, December 23, 2007
I may be the only person who thinks so, but I prefer Ali G over Borat. Both are great, but I like Ali G's style and subtleness better. Anyway, for all my peeps, peep the rest of my music vids that have been on blast throughout the week. And yo, more to come so don't be acting the fool. Come back soon. Peace.
Saturday, December 22, 2007
For a more depressing YouTube video featuring the same song click HERE. If this doesn't either make you cry, angry, or want to drink the sorrows of the world away, I don't know what will.
Anyway, as I said, even before I knew this was a political tune, I liked it. As I've gotten older, of course, it's gained relevance, as have many of John Lennon's other songs. But unfortunately, as Forrest Gump said "for no particular reason, somebody shot" John Lennon.
Once again, in case you missed any episodes in The Serious Tip's Great Christmas Video Extravaganza 2007, here they are:
Day 1: Ozzy Osbourne and Jessica Simpson - Walking in a Winterwonderland
Day 2: Brian Setzer - Sleigh Ride
Day 3: John Denver and the Muppets - 12 Days of Christmas
Day 4: Twisted Sister - O Come All Ye Faithful
Day 5: Run DMC - Christmas in Hollis
Friday, December 21, 2007
My mom never made collared greens or cheese and macaroni for Christmas dinner. Maybe that's the reason I didn't end up as cool as D.M.C.
Once again, in case you missed any of these other fine videos:
Day 1: Ozzy Osbourne and Jessica Simpson - Walking in a Winterwonderland
Day 2: Brian Setzer - Sleigh Ride
Day 3: John Denver and the Muppets - 12 Days of Christmas
Day 4: Twisted Sister - O Come All Ye Faithful
Thursday, December 20, 2007
Without a doubt, the Twisted Sister Christmas album is one of the best Christmas releases in a long time. Their "Heavy Metal Christmas" is probably the best song on the album. Any Christmas song that talks about tattoos, pentagrams, and bottles of Jack Daniels get my vote.
In case you missed any of my other totally fave Christmas tunes:
Day 1: Ozzy and Jessica Simpson - "Walking in a Winter Wonderland"
Day 2: Brian Setzer - "Sleigh Ride"
Day 3: John Denver and the Muppets - "12 Days of Christmas"
Of course, much credit to Greedo's 101 Christmas videos 2006 & 2007.
Wednesday, December 19, 2007
On December 18, Osei Nyahuma of Tallahassee, FL, became the latest recipient of a new home courtesy of former Seminole and current Atlanta Falcon Warrick Dunn. According to the Tallahassee Democrat, the 51-year old Nyahuma is “the first man and the first Tallahassee recipient of Dunn's foundation”. Since its inception in 1997, the Warrick Dunn Foundation has assisted over 70 single parents and nearly 200 children and dependants in getting homes throughout the southeast, from Baton Rouge, La, to Atlanta, Ga, to Tampa, Fla., and now in Tallahassee.
Claiming stories like this should get front page headlines over those involving sex, drugs, and crime is an overused cliché. I am not going to beat that dead horse. However, after seeing my alma mater continuously drug through the mud this week due to the misdeeds of a few academic underachievers, I felt the need to point out that at least some good has come out of the Florida State University football program.
(Image: Mike Ewen/Tallahassee Democrat)
Anyway, here is "12 Days of Christmas" by John Denver and a plethora of jolly Muppets.
In case you missed out, see part one of my holiday jam fest, Ozzy Osborne and Jessica Simpson's "Walking in a Winter Wonderland". Or part two, Brian Setzer's "Sleigh Ride".
As usual, most of these great videos and more are featured on Greedo's 101 Christmas Videos 2006 & 2007.
Tuesday, December 18, 2007
See part one: Ozzy Osbourne and Jessica Simpson's stiring rendition of "Winter Wonderland"
Monday, December 17, 2007
All of this week's great YouTube magic will come from Greedo's 101 Christmas Videos Online 2006 & 2007. There are some classics there. Definitely worth checking out. Or you can just wait for me to post my favorites.
Thursday, December 13, 2007
(If you missed the earlier post, please catch up HERE.)
Before I start, I want to say thanks to Matt Cerrone's MetsBlog for hooking me up with a link and bringing hundreds of Mets fans to my site.
I also want to thank the old-time Mets fans who brought up a trade I forgot: Amos Otis to the Royals for Joe Foy. For those not up on their Mets history: the Mets gave up on Otis after the 1969 season in exchange for the emerging speedy Foy. Unfortunately, Foy would play one season with the Mets, hit .236 in 99 games, and be drafted by the expansion Washington Senators. Meanwhile, Otis would excel during his 13 years with Kansas City, making the all-star team five times, winning three Gold Gloves, and be consistently rated as one of the American League's best power and speed threats.
And now to the haters:
To the commentors who mentioned Lee Mazzilli: Yes, Mazzilli was a Met outfielder. However, he was able to reach his full potential with the Mets. As a matter of fact, he had his best seasons with the Mets. So when they traded Mazzilli for minor league Ranger prospects Ron Darling and Walt Terrell, they sold high. As I said in my previous post, they broke even.
To Seth, who mentioned former Met prospect OF Preston Wilson. After Wilson was traded for Mike Piazza he quickly became the Marlins centerfielder and hit over 20 home runs each year he was in Florida, even going 30-30 in 2000. Yes, the Mets got a future Hall of Famer, but this is another example of breaking even.
To MetsBlogger Giaco who called my post a "terrible article": name me a trade where the Mets did better than break even by trading a highly regarded young outfielder. It doesn't happen. They never swindle another team by trading an outfielder. As a matter of fact, the Mets get the short end of the deal more often than not.
I particularly liked MetBlogger TonyLett, who called my post "more media Mets-bashing". Seriously.
So I stand my ground here. In my opinion, contrary to the view of others, that was not a "slanted, incomplete and limited analysis". It merely took the Mets organizational outfield prospect development to task. They consistantly underestimate their outfield prospects and have not developed an outfielder above replacement level that played regularly for the major league club since Darryl Strawberry. Young Mets outfielders are either traded, given up on, misused, or improperly developed.
That was my point.
Notice to all employees:
I am once again substituting for The Cavalier over at YaySports! The Cav is putting out a movie one day and I think he is busy working on it. Or so he claims. So in his stead, I have resumed my role as the Thursday Sub.
Check out what I am doing over at YaySports!
(The Cavalier did not write this post. He is on yet another self-imposed exile. However, I did warn him of the parody that follows.)
In case you haven't heard, there is a new species among us. No mere cobra, the Naja Ashei is the meanest, orneriest, hungriest, most potent reptile on the planet. At over nine feet long, he has enough venom to kill 15 men, or an entire basketball team (or only one Eddy Curry.)
But despite being the baddest snake on Earth, Naja Ashei has an uncurable case of mysophobia, better known as "Howie Mandel Disease", or scientifically described as "a fear of germs". Naja Ashei is venhemently opposed to touch. Even the mere thought of contact makes Naja Ashei's skin crawl. Few are those who have broken Naja Ashei's personal bubble and lived to tell.
Yet now, with the recent announcement of his existence, Naja Ashei's life has taken a tragic turn. People around the world want to see him, interview him, have him host their award shows. His life is no longer private. Worst of all, on the day of yester, someone hugged Naja Ashei! But who? Who could have committed such a heinous act? Who could have violated the personal space of the world meanest, most venomous snake? Stay tuned as we attempt to solve "Who Hugged Naja Ashei?"
In other news, a whole bunch of NBA teams played. Half won and half lost. Such is the nature of things. Surprisingly enough, the Knicks were not among the winners, losing to Seattle. The Raptors, on the other hand, were victorious, defeating the Mavericks for the first time since November 2003. (Note: I remember Nov 03. I was an unemployed recent college grad with hardly a nickel to my name. But that's a story for another day.)
Other teams allowed in the cool winners crew were (as of midnight Thursday AM): the Sixers, Bobcats, Pacers, Celtics, Bucks, Rockets, and Nuggets. If your favorite team is not listed, that means one of three things: either they lost, they weren't done playing at midnight EST, or they didn't play. Again, such is the nature of things.
I'll be back later Thursday evening with some more news and notes. So in the meantime, stay cool, stay funky, remember to tip your bartenders, and you never know, next time I might just reveal some Roswell-autopsy-like evidence that Who Shot Mamba? exists. Sadly, Who Hugged Naja Ashei? is only a parody.
Monday, December 10, 2007
In no other position have the Mets given up on more players and received less than in the outfield. After the trade of promising young outfielder Lastings Milledge, I decided to look up a small sample of the Mets history in trading promising homegrown outfield talent in an effort to decide if the result was ever worth the price.
(Please understand I am not examining any reasons why, merely the player traded and the result. I understand there could have been extenuating circumstances.)
December 11, 1986 - The Mets traded Kevin Mitchell and four never-weres to the San Diego Padres for Kevin McReynolds and little-known middle reliever Gene Walter. Although McReynolds finished third in MVP voting in 1988, Mitchell, after being flipped to the Giants for eventual Cy Young winner Mark Davis, won the award in 1989.
June 18, 1989 - The Mets traded Len Dykstra, pitcher Roger McDowell, and a minor leaguer to be named later for Phillie second baseman Juan Samuel. The Juan Samuel Outfield Experiment completely failed in New York, leaving the Mets with nothing to show for the Phillies' eventual three-time all-star and 1993 NL MVP-runner up.
November 18, 1994 - The Mets traded prospect Jeromy Burnitz along with Joe Roa(?) to the Indians for Paul Byrd, Jerry Dipoto, and Dave Mlicki. Mlicki would pitch three seasons of mediocre baseball for the Mets while Burnitz, after being traded to Milwaukee in 1996, would be an all-star in 1999 and concluded his career with over 300 career home runs.
July 31, 2002 - The Mets dealt outfielder Jay Payton to the Colorado Rockies along with bit pieces Robert Stratton and Mark Corey for Mark Little and John Thomson. Unlike the aforementioned examples, Payton has never been all-star. However, he has been a serviceable major leaguer, which cannot be said for the return in this trade as Little and Thomson played a total of 12 games for the Mets.
November 30, 2007 - After only 115 games with the Mets, 22-year old prospect Lastings Milledge is traded to the Washington Nationals for catcher Brian Schneider and outfielder Ryan Church.
If history repeats itself, Milledge will be the outfielder the Mets hoped he would be when they drafted him. Unfortunately, like Mitchell, Dykstra, Burnitz, and Payton, it will be for another team.
So in conclusion, a warning to Mets General Manager Omar Minaya: do not trade highly-regarded outfield prospects Carlos Gomez or Fernando Martinez. Even if you get a top-shelf starting pitcher, the price is never right.
Thursday, December 6, 2007
According to reports, Florida State University will soon announce offensive coordinator Jimbo Fisher as the heir apparent to the Florida State football head coaching position. Of course, this promotion is contingent on the retirement of legendary current head coach Bobby Bowden. Bowden, however, has given no hints as to when that day may come.
With the announcement of Fisher as the next head coach, it stands to reason Bowden will be retiring within the next four years. One of the reasons of the announcement is to satisfy the question any potential recruit may have on who their head coach will be during their time at FSU. Now they have their answer: if not Bowden, then Fisher.
Using that logic to narrow the Bowden window of retirement to the next four years, I predict it will be sooner than many think. I believe next year will be the end of Coach Bowden's illustrious career at FSU. Here's why:
- Coach Bowden will have his last regular season home game in Tallahassee against the University of Florida. Florida State ends their regular season against rival UF every year. In odd years the game is played in Gainesville, and in even years the game occurs in Tallahassee. There is no way Bobby Bowden's last regular season game will be in Gainesville. I guarantee it will be a home game against Florida State's greatest rival, either in 2008 or 2010.
- On the road against Miami. Using the aforementioned logic, that Coach Bowden will end at home against Florida, he will obviously then coach his last game against the University of Miami in Miami. Part one of what will be his statewide farewell tour. South Florida FSU alumni will be ready to pack Dolphins Stadium.
- The Farewell Tour, Part Two: FSU vs. Colorado in Raymond James Stadium. According to Andrew Carter of the Orlando Sentinel, FSU President T.K. Wetherell is pushing to move one of the Seminoles' home games to Tampa. Living in Tampa, I know there is a large FSU alumni contingent in the Bay Area. Announcing the 08-09 season as Bowden's last will mean a guaranteed sell-out and give alumni living in Central Florida one last chance to see their coach.
- Bowden signed a one-year deal. On November 30th, Bowden signed a one-year extension. I know at his age thinking more than one year at a time is a gamble, but why re-negotiate if it wasn't his last year? Why not sign him to an open-ended contact renewable at the end of each season upon the coach's request?
To be honest, based strictly on the idea that I didn't think he would make it to 2010 and won't coach his final game in Gainesville, I've said 2008 will be Bowden's last year for quite some time. Believe me or not, it doesn't matter. What does matter is now the writing on the wall is quite evident: Bobby Bowden is done after the 2008-2009 college football season. Over 30 years and 300 wins at Florida State. Well done, Coach Bowden.
Sunday, December 2, 2007
Whereas I considered myself a Knicks fan, I found myself wandering the NBA landscape in search of a place to call home. Unable to survive on my own, it wasn't long before I found myself in one of the many displaced fan camps throughout the nation. Within this refugee camp were many other displaced fans who had likewise boycotted association with their favorite team. I met numerous Clippers fans who couldn't stand Donald Sterling, Charlotte Hornets fans who couldn't find it in their hearts to follow the Hornets to New Orleans nor root for their new Bobcats franchise, and 76er fans who had enough of their organization's mismanagement. Recently, we have even had fans from the Timberwolves' and Sonics' Nations join our camp as a reaction towards the mismanagement of their respective franchises.
Although I still stayed in touch with other Knicks fans, both in New York and throughout the Knicks Nation diaspora, I grew to enjoy my new community. My fellow refugees taught me how to be a general NBA fan, to follow the league and watch the games, but not acknowledge the team of my home nation. Although there were times of despair where we would all miss our homeland, we were generally happy. We traded tales of former glory, bragged about our stars of yesteryear, and embraced the sheer joy of the game, all without the drama of attachment.
Despite the joy of living in a displaced fan camp, I secretly yearned to return to Knicks Nation. I dreamt of the day when I could watch Marbury, Randolph, Curry, and Balkman and cheer with my fellow Knicks fans. Alas, as long as the incompetent regime of Isiah Thomas maintained control, I would remain in the camp, left only with my hopes, dreams, and fleeting memories of days gone by.
Then, last week, a glimmer of hope. After the Knicks suffered one of the worst losses in franchise history, a 45-point shellacking by the Boston Celtics, I thought for sure I could begin planning my return. Gleefully, I packed my bags, rolled up my sleeping mat, and prepared for the long journey home. Unfortunately, it was not to be. Despite the protests of both the remnants of Knicks Nation and their supporting media channels, Isiah Thomas remained in power. Dejected, I returned to my spot in the camp, unrolled my sleeping mat and closed my eyes, dreaming of Walt Frazier, Bernard King, and Patrick Ewing.
I know there will be a day when I will return to the Knicks Nation. A time when I will have to say good-bye to the many friends I have made in the displaced fan refugee camp. Despite the sadness of farewell, however, the fall of the Thomas regime will be among the happiest events of my life. As I have planned for years, on that joyous day I will once again don my John Starks jersey, dust off my Knicks hat, find myself a seat at my local sports bar, and cheer loudly and boisterously for the Knickbockers of New York.
Saturday, December 1, 2007
As you could probably have guessed, things were not going well for us. Although I blamed myself somewhat, it was her mistakes and misjudgements that cost us our planned Autumn together. Honestly, what happened this year hurt more than anything she had ever done before. Since January, we had planned a memorable October and then, at the last possible moment, nothing. Needless to say, I was blindsided with disappointment, sideswiped with saddness, and pummelled with despair.
After what happened, I needed time to recover. Time to understand. Time to reflect. Time to realize that not everything is going to work out as planned and even the best laid intentions can go up in smoke. Thankfully, and nothing against her, but this disappointment has helped me to learn that I shouldn't base my happiness on only one thing. I need to enjoy the other things in life just as much.
Meanwhile, my love completely understood my disappointment. She knew she failed us, and although things will never be the same, she promised a brighter tomorrow. Honestly, one of the things I was most impressed about is how quick she dumped one of her worst habits. This was one of those habits she knew I hated, as one of my least favorites had it for years. To be brutally honest, had she kept this habit, and knowing how it effected our autumn plans, I might have walked away for a while. I know that sounds harsh, but I am not sure if I could have taken any more.
Besides ditching her worst habit, she has also done a few other things to improve herself. I'll admit though, some of the changes she has made most recently have really been baffling. But what do I know? I'm just a guy who will love her just the same.