Thursday, October 30, 2008

NFL Picks Week #9 (Cline) - I Miss Eric Zeier

The preamble to my picks was going to be centered around a few World Series thoughts. Then 2 things happened:

1. Those "few thoughts" then mushroomed into a long-ass rambling mess of a post.
2. Someone (a loyal reader who goes by the handle "GDR") not only got the Buck Belue reference in my Week 8 picks, but actually complained that there wasn't any actual Georgia content.

Well, one of the unspoken rules is that what our readers want, they get. Especially when they want UGA football talk.

I've been a Bulldogs fan since the late 70s/early 80s when we lived outside of Atlanta. This was during the Herschel Walker glory days. They even inspired me to literally wax poetic as part of an assignment in 4th Grade:

The Georgia Dawgs are a super group,
They'll take everybody for a loop.
The Dogs have got Super Herschel,
Who's sure to do a beer commercial.

Good, right?

But on to the game at hand. Outside of the annual Thanksgiving weekend game vs. Georgia Tech (which I'm going to this year!), this is Georgia's biggest game pretty much every year. They call it the World's Largest Outdoor Cocktail Party, and it's held in Jacksonville which is a neutral site even though it's closer to Florida.

I'm not going to rehash the whole history of this rivalry (that's what that link is for), but check out the 1980 version and Larry Munson's call and try not to get the chills.

Munson retired this year, and it's a shame because to me his gravelly voice sounds like baby angels gargling with teen angels' bathwater.

As much as I love that video, it's a little annoying that the Munson sound clips don't always mesh with the video. But that doesn't take away from the beauty of:
  • "Run, Lindsay run!"
  • "We stepped on their face with a hobnail boot and broke their nose..."
  • "My God, a freshman!"
  • "Look at the sugar falling from the sky..."

Today's game is huge because the winner has a relatively easy path to the SEC Championship and an outside shot at the BCS Championship if things break right.

It's also huge because Florida coach Urban Meyer has his panties in a bunch over Georgia's 30-yard penalty-inducing celebration after Moreno scored the first TD. Check out Tebow's dumbfounded reaction:

I'll be honest. I don't have the warmest of fuzzies about this one. I hope I'm wrong, but the multitude of injuries Georgia has had this year does not bode well against Tebow and the rest of
their speedsters.

I'll wrap this up because the game's about to start. How 'bout them Dawgs?!?

On to my picks (in CAPS) Week 9 in the leaguewhere they play... FOR PAY!

Week 8 Records:

Cline -- 9-5 (+$260) (LOTW/BDCS -- 2-0)

Goose -- 6-8 (-$340)

Overall Records:

Cline -- 50-34-1 (.595) +$750 (LOTW/BDCS -- 5-5)

Goose -- 45-39-1 (.536) -$250

N.Y. Jets at BUFFALO

This is a different sport but the right city & state. How bad was Isaiah for the Knicks? 2 games in and fans are already cranking out YouTubes with GuJo getting jacked over a simple putback dunk:

Detroit at CHICAGO (-9)

My Tripod of Terrible strategy went 1-2 last week against the spread, but I'm going back to that fetid well. Also, I have a new logo:

JACKSONVILLE (-7) at Cincinnati

Is Jacksonville ever going to put it together like everything thinks they're capable of? If they were ever gonna, this is the week.

BALTIMORE (-3) at Cleveland

Just found out that my girlfriend's roommate who is generous of both heart and ample of bosom is going to hook us up with tix to the Eagles/Baltimore game in Baltimore. So until then... Go
Ravens! Or at least the one she's dating. Those crazy kids. I hope it works out. For at least a couple more weeks.

TAMPA BAY (-10.5) at Kansas City

Ugh. I'm conflicted between my Tripod of Terrible and the fact that I don't love TB to put up a lot of points. Gotta show Tampa one last bit of love.

HOUSTON at Minnesota (-1.5)

Minnesota's imploding. It continues this week.

Arizona (-9) at ST. LOUIS

Damn, that is a big dog. I like Arizona, but they're gonna give up some points on the road and probalby not cover.

Green Bay (-1.5) at TENNESSEE

Wait a minute. Tennesseee is the last unbeaten team. Playing at home against a good, not great Packers team.

And they're 1.5 point underdogs? I'll take those points, thank you.

Miami at DENVER (-4)

I'll take the mediocre team that's home, thank you.

Dallas at NY GIANTS (-9)

If Romo's healthy, I would take the Cowboys here. But Brad Johnson or Brooks Bollinger, or even Gary Hogeboom ain't getting the job done here.

Apropos of nothing, this is pretty cool.

ATLANTA (-6) at Oakland

If the Tripod continues to do well, they may have to make room for a new member.

PHILADELPHIA (-3.5) at Seattle

Seattle lucked into a fucked-up Niners team last week. They're still bad.

What's not bad is Carnival's *other* marketing stroke of genius besides the giant Dallas beach balls (see above). Taking place tomorrow in Philly, a giant fucking pinata will rain down candy and presumably death upon unsuspecting citizens. Check it out.


Indy's resurgence continues and I continue my tact of not taking NE against good teams.

PITTSBURGH (-1.5) at Washington

We find out if Washington's for real or not. I don't think they are.

World Series Wrap-Up From an Unabashed Phillies Hater

I started writing this approximately 24 minutes after the Phillies had clinched the the 2008 World Series.  And approximately 23 and a half minutes after I got 2 separate emails (one from The Sports Authority and one from ESPN) offering to sell me Phillies World Series merchandise.  Ain't the Internet grand?

I've got a bunch of thoughts bouncing around in my head.  The only way I can translate those thought racquetballs into reasonably coherent text is with a list. Enjoy.


I gotta give props to the Philadelphia Phillies who are deserving champs.  They were clearly the best team I saw these playoffs.  They had the unhittable #1 starter, the marquee guys who actually produce, a lights-out closer and a never-ending stream of guys stepping up. I don't know what the #s say, but it seemed like Victorino or Ruiz were getting big hits every inning.  It's the perfect recipe for a champion. 

It doesn't detract from what they did, but I would have loved to see them go up against a deeper, more experienced team like the Red Sox teams of recent years, or the Yankees before that. As a someone with a vested interest in rooting against them, I never felt like they were ever in danger of losing to the Brewers, Dodgers, or Devil Rays.  They go up against the 07 Red Sox, and I think we have a 7-game Series for the ages.

Speaking of which, a 6-game Series next year would qualify as a classic almost by default. The last 5 years, the losing teams have won a TOTAL of 2 games.  That's just brutal for everyone except the fans of the winning teams.  Funny that the whole hubbub about the winner of the All-Star Game getting the 4th Game at home hasn't come into play in the 6 years it's been in place.


I've had some fun tweaking Phillies fans, trying to jinx them, and grasping at whatever straws I could to find a reason to get behind teams who I feel either indifference (Brewers, Devil Rays) or dislike (Dodgers).  OK, I've had a lot of fun.

But there have been times when the sheer, naked desperation for a champion that I've seen in Philly fans has given me a few pangs of guilt.  It didn't stop me, but I was panged.  At times these playoffs felt like I was watching a Trail of Tears rather than a Stairway to Heaven. And everyone knows, there's not a bigger comedy killer than the Trail of Tears.  And this is for a team that went 10-3 in the playoffs.

Don't get me wrong.  I sincerely do not like the Phillies, and groups of cheering Phillies fans never fail to send me on a gut-wrenching flashback to 1993.  That was the year (after 2 heart-breaking WS losses for the Braves) that I sat in Veteran's Stadium for both games the Phillies won, including the clincher.  I can only assume that there were a few Tampa fans in the house last night who now know what it's like to have 60,000+ people loudly having the time of their lives while you see a season of possibilities slip through your fingers. 

Like a late 70s racist, some of my best friends are Phillies fans (i.e. black).  I've been conflicted when my natural inclination to root for people who I care about to find happiness is at cross odds with my desire to never see a happy group of Phillies fans ever again.  I saw enough of those on 10/13/93.

To use another metaphor, Phillies fans are like zombies.  Not in their mindless drooling, shuffling gait, or desire to eat the flesh of the living, but in the fact that my animosity towards the Phillies mostly dissipates when confronted with their fans on an individual basis. If you encountered a singleton zombie, most of us could take it in a fight, or at least run away without too much hassle.  But when wave after wave of brain-craving freaks are coming for you, you're gonna be zombie chow.

So what have I learned from these metaphors?  Never leave the house, and if I have to leave the house, only go to very small bars in other cities to watch baseball.  Preferably leather bars.


Even more selfish than my resentment of the Phillies based on 2 nights 15 years ago, is the reason these playoffs have bugged me so much. 

I've lived in the Philadelphia area for over 20 years now. I'm not trying to claim the same life-long resume of suffering that most can claim.  But I do identify myself as a Philadelphian, and it sucks to see the entire city united behind something I can't be a part of. 

The Sixers run in 2001 was one of the Top 5 fan experiences in my lifetime.  I'm a huge fan of the Eagles and have lived and died with their roller coaster rides every season.  If that were Akers hitting a game-winning FG or Iverson dropping a game-clinching runner in the lane, I'm taking off tomorrow for the parade.  Instead I have to see 30 emails come through my Inbox today from delirious Phillies friends.

I'm not looking for a telethon in my honor, or even a shred of sympathy from Phillies fans whose balls/ovaries I've busted the last few weeks.  But I'm not wasting precious therapist time rehashing this crap when I have so many other issues to work on.  That's what blogs are for.

Quick-hit thoughts about Game 5:
  • After the Jenkins double, the feeling that it was Philly's night coudn't have been stronger.
  • How much did Burrell's double miss being a homer by?  2 inches?  3?  And no mention of it or replay.
  • I know the lefty/right thing means you're supposed to hit for Baldelli, but he was the only one showing much life. I would've rolled the dice with him over Zobrist, even with the line drive he hit.
  • HORRIBLE at-bat by Upton in the 8th.  If you don't get to the Phils in that inning, you're not going to, unless you can make it to extra innings and outlast Lidge.   Romero gives up a solid single after falling behind Crawford.  And Upton swings at the first pitch for a weak double-play ball.  Game over.  You have to at least make Romero throw a strike.  Not that McCarBuck would have mentioned it.
  • I do like Lidge, who was dominant before the Pujols debacle from a couple of years back.  Good to see him back to his old ways.
  • The 2 best auditory experiences I had watching this Series were:
    • Game 5 (Monday version) when we put the TV on mute and listened to the Phillies radio announcers on a transistor which I think also picked up some Dennis Quaid.
    • Game 5 (Wednesday version) when I DVRed the game and watched the first couple of innings on fast-forward.
  • Totally unrelated to that last bullet point, did I mention I can't stand McCarver and/or Buck?  I think the Phillies fans, who always think the national announcers are against them, may have actually had a point this time.  I don't think it was a case of Buckarver rooting against the Phillies, as much as it was a case of them deciding the storyline ahead of time and massaging the facts to fit that storyline.  The Rays were the young, fast, feel-good, rags-to-riches team, and by default the Phillies had to be the bad guys. 
  • A couple of links:
So, Phillies fans, savor the flavor of this season.  They don't come along very often. Also, I wouldn't resign Burrell.  Just like 99% of Philadelphia wouldn't have a few months back.

Remember music videos?

MTV is back in the music video business...sort of. Because I assume they have a library of a million videos from back in a time when that was the thing to do, MTV has launched a new video service on the web where you can go and relive your coke-filled 80s life.

And to celebrate this great new catalog (I still can't tell if it's complete or not) The Popcorn Trick has decided to choose some of their favorite videos of yesteryear. Take a look on the flip side...

While some of the groups took the easy way out (boo!) and simply used stock footage from their concerts to use as videos, others really sunk their teeth into the medium. It is these videos I fondly remember for their dated looks, overacting and melodramatic grand gestures. I hope you enjoy them as well.

Genesis: Land of Confusion

Everyone remembers this one. I can picture it now...Phil Collins begging the group to go with the puppets because it's the one thing that makes the actual Phil Collins look better. And then we get the whole political slant with Reagan nuking us all in a hazy dream.

Toto: Africa

Does it get more pretentious than this little thing right here? I'm genuinely asking. This video houses some of the greatest unintentional comedy the world has ever seen. It starts off with the oh-so-serious drummer with his Gloria Vanderbilt glasses and Courtney Cox blouse. That he thinks this look is working for him is amazing. Of course he's Sgt. Rock compared to the keyboardist, who comes out of nowhere. Other notes...

  • The book motif...uh, sure.
  • Every video is roughly 12 times better with the appearance of a gong. I worked out the equation.
  • I'm not 100% sure, but I think if you added up the total, Toto would have the most amount of hair combined than any other band in the 80s. Yes I'm including pubic hair.

Tom Jones: Sexbomb

Tom Jones, working about the same amount of facial cosmetic surgery than Sharon Stone and Madonna combined, makes a pitch to the youth of America with this "hip" little diddy. I don't think it worked, as it waddled away into obscurity...until now. Looking slightly less animated than Bernie on his 2weekend jaunt, Jones, wades through a sway and a shutter once or twice before the audience truly loses interest. I can think of no better video to show us the lengths a fading pop star will go in an attempt to reach the kids.

Links of Interest 10/30

Big list today...

Possibly the greatest link I've ever seen. This is exactly why the Internet was invented - so I could own a Surf Nicaragua shirt.

How can you be mad at this guy/muppet?

There was a rumor once that the comic book series Preacher was going to be made into a series at HBO, but then they dropped it because the material was too disturbing. Now it looks like it's going to be a movie. I'm not sure if that's good or bad.

An attempt to find out what the greatest thing in the world is - using the NCAA bracket. (from kottke)

Who doesn't want to know about all those players anointed the "next Michael Jordan?"

This place seems like it has a lot of crime.

Think the universe is big? It might even be bigger than that!

South American Nazi land?

Phillies - World Series Champions!

Milwaukee couldn't do it.

Los Angeles couldn't do it.

Tampa Bay couldn't do it.

Bud Selig couldn't do it.

The negativity couldn't do it.

The 2008 Philadelphia Phillies beat it all to become the world champions. It has a nice ring.

Enjoy it. I know I will.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Look - we made a movie!

Everyone wants to be a star.

For the past few years, Cline and myself, along with a few other friends have gotten off our couches and participated in some short film challenges, in hopes of making a ton of money so we can then retire and do this for a living. While that scenario hasn't exactly played out the way we thought it would, we have met with some varying levels of success.

Anyway, a couple of months ago, we made a film in 24 hours for the Philadelphia chapter of Film Racing contest. The requirements for the movie:

Theme: Bully
Prop: A rose

These two elements were sent to us Friday night at 10:00, and had to be included in the final film, which had to be dropped off 10:00 Saturday night. Our film, titled, "Vicious Circle" can be seen right here:

"Vicious Circle" and the other films are all viewable at the link above.

Why does all this matter? Because we are now eligible for the audience award (I have no idea what that entails) for our city - and that's where you come in. Please watch, and if you think it's all kinds of awesome, you can vote for it here.

We kindly thank you for your support, and also appreciate you sending it along to your friends and/or large groups of people.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

The Good...the Bad...the Beautiful #24


Legends on the stage together. Jerry Lee looks less than thrilled to be there. I guess it was a 21+ show or something.

Bad and Beautiful on the flip side...


I dare you to watch all 2:51 of this. That said, looks like I have a new potential presidential candidate to back. For more on Mr. Gravel's platform, click here!


I tear up a little every time I hear this. I'll let you decide what kind of tears they are.

Links of Interest 10/28

Who doesn't want to get to know the Olsen Twins? (from NY Times)

Naked sushi model bares all (in a testimonial way sickos). (from Vanity Fair)

Cool site that shows you the electoral college breakdown from every presidential election.

For Halloween...a look at a spooky TB hospital that has gone through some different iterations over the years. (from Mental Floss)

More about sushi - this time about sushi "bullies;" sushi chefs that sometimes refuse service because of your order or how you eat. (from Wall Street Journal)

Monday, October 27, 2008

Bud Selig is the ANTICHRIST!

Take this with a grain of salt - it's more a simple reflection of the state I'm in than an objective look at the game.

Bud Selig is the devil.

After watching his press conference tonight, after suspending the Phillies game, I have one simple question:

How could you send the Phillies out for the top of the 6th inning? Why not simply call it after the fifth? Your press conference was a farce, between looking like an old man scanning the yard for those darn kids, and throwing blame around everywhere, including the grounds crew and umpires.

No - I'm not asking for them to call the game and declare the Phils the champs. I understand the absurdity of deciding a game for the world championship within 5 innings. But the way I understand it, they could have simply suspended the game after 5 innings (giving both teams the same number of at bats at that time) and resumed later (tomorrow) with a score of 2-1.

Instead, Selig and whoever else, decided it was a good idea to send the Phillies out there for the top of the 6th, in a storm that few people other than Clooney and Mark Wahlberg have ever seen. How is that fair for the Phillies?

Again - I'm not asking for a Phillies win...I'm just asking for fairness. Is that such a terrible thing?

It's absurd. It's a horrendous call. And here's Bud Selig, stuck in the middle of another controversy, that hurts baseball more. Thanks Bud. Thanks for fucking up again.

The Good...the Bad...the Beautiful #23


I'm disgusted with myself that I only learned of this brilliant video a short while ago. I'm pretty sure words can't explain how awesome this is - you just have to watch it.

Bad and Beautiful on the flip side...


I love the man, and I love the fact that he does these impressions, but stilll...yeesh.


Who doesn't love dominoes? Especially when you can set 'em up and knock 'em down?

Links of Interest 10/27

Learn how a food critic thinks. (from NY Times)

I was one of the rare people who grew up when cassette tapes were the traded commodity for the music industry. When you think about it, it's a short-lived media. Of course, there are some people that still enjoy them.

Want to know how good a restaurant is? Check out its veggie burger.

Clint Eastwood's career did not take any traditional arc. In fact, it's fascinating to look into. Here's a look at his influences.

Who doesn't love E.T.? Even with this bizarre merchandise based on the movie?

Weekend World Series Thoughts - Games 3 & 4

It's tough for me to remember specific moments of games 3 & 4 of the World Series, other than to say both games were completely awesome, completely exciting, and completely satisfying. Here it is Monday and I'm still living in euphoria.

The weekend has been difficult to keep up with; if you've read Cline's post about the movie competition we're currently involved with, you might be able to understand the state I'm in right now. A state of bemused, excited, exhausted dementia.

But it's not a problem. I welcome it. I eat it for breakfast.

On the flip side, some semi-coherent thoughts on the World Series...

  • It's amazing how blatantly bad the umpiring has been. It's no longer a bias issue as it was the Phillies turn to take advantage of a bad call. Still, it's crazy how bad some of the calls have been and how bunched they've been on such an important stage.
  • I don't care about the ratings. I bet no one in Tampa Bay cares about the ratings. Other than FOX, and possibly baseball, why should anyone care about the ratings? It's silly. There's nothing that can be done about it. But it's not like next year the World Series will only be broadcast on the web because FOX thinks an episode of 'Til Death will generate more ad revenue.
  • God bless Jamie Moyer. The man is amazing. Think about it. Not only is he 46, not only is he throwing himself around out there with reckless abandon, doing everything he possibly can to win the ball game, apparently he was so violently ill Friday night, he sweat through 2 sets of bedsheets. Not to brag, but I knew the man was going to come to the ballpark ready to war.
  • Is it me or does it seem that every time a Ray is up to bat with a runner on base, Buck goes out of his way to suggest that with one swing of the bat the game will be turned around? Are we really at the point where we have to beg the Rays to win, FOX? I realize you ignored all the Philadelphia angles early on because you were certain the Rays were going to sweep, but that's on you - not me.
  • Joe Blanton - You turned it on when you needed to, and you now have an entire city ready to buy you a beer. Relish in that feeling. Not many people have experienced it in this town.
Game 5 is tonight with Cole Hamels on the mound for the Phillies and Scott Kazmir throwing for the Rays. Until then, relive the excitement of the climax of game 3:

Sunday, October 26, 2008

NFL Picks Week #8 (Cline) - I Miss Buck Belue

As some of you know, both Goose & I have been involved with short film competitions in the last few years. Along with several other idiots (Nectar of the Gods), we have done pretty well. The gist is that you have a short period of time (24-72 hours) to write, film, score, & edit a short (4-8 minutes usually) movie.

This weekend, we'll be doing our 5th National Film Challenge. Tonight at 7 we'll receive 2 Genres (we have to choose one), a Prop, a Line of Dialogue, and a Character from the NFC. They do this to minimize how much writing & filming teams can do ahead of time.

We then have until Monday night to finish the movie. It will be a bit more challenging because we'll be doing it without our primary editor (J-Hawk) for the first time since our inaugural NFC effort.

As much as we love doing these competitions, there's always something that annoys us.  Find out what it is after the leap...

Usually it's the guy who runs the NFC, Doug Whyte.  Almost always, it's Doug Whyte.  For the second year in a row, we've gotten one of the same Genres we got the year before.  In 2006 & 2007 one of the Genres we were given was Holiday Film (WARNING: NOT AN ACTUAL GENRE).  In 2007 & 2008 we got Romance. 

There's 2 possible explanations for this:

  1. Doug Whyte's incompetent.  How hard would it be to maintain a simple Excel spreadsheet tracking each team's genres over the years?  There's ~150 teams that enter each year, and only a subset of those are holdovers.  I'm not saying that we have to cycle our way through every single genre before getting a repeat.  I don't think, however, it's too much to ask to make sure that a team doesn't get the same Genre 2 years in a row.  Mostly, we just want to explore doing different genres.  Because we do great drama. 
  2. Doug Whyte hates us.  This is more plausible AND more entertaining.  It *may* have stemmed from the film festival we went to back in 2005 when we won the NFC Audience Award and I called him a cock-tease.  Which isn't my fault, because there was an open bar.  And he was being a cock-tease.  Also, smashing the award as part of our film last year probably didn't help either.
Anyway, I won't give away too much of the plot, but here are the elements we were given this year:

Genres: Romance or Horror
Character: Jamie Walsh, Clerk
Prop: Fly Swatter
Line of Dialogue: And what have we learned from this?

We did opt to go with horror, and we almost did a movie where the big reveal was that the fly swatter was the killer.  Also, we animated the fly swatter and gave it googly eyes and an awesome voiceover.

We're about halfway through the filming and we're pretty optimistic about how it's going to turn out.

Helping us last night was the rain delay of the Phillies game, because once that started, we were pretty much done.

It was an entertaining game, especially towards the end.  A couple of observations:
  1. I want to see a PPV MMA bout between McCarver & Buck.  Winner gets to blow Upton first.  Upton's good, but c'mon.
  2. The guy behind the plate with the red face paint and sunglasses was awesome. And not creepy in the least.
  3. The signs were, at best, boring and, at worst gay (there was one invoking the Playoff Fairy) or a rip-off (I saw a "You Gotta Believe").
  4. If Joe  Maddon sees a guy skulking around his house in the off-season muttering things about a 5-man infield and peeking through his windows, it's probably Goose.  If Maddon drops the 6-man infield in Game 4, Goose will be waiting outside the locker room with lube and a ball gag.
  5. It's a tough, split-second call, but Longoria should've let the ball go.  There's a better chance it would've had enough momentum to get to the line and roll foul than he had to throw out Dan Haggerty at the plate.
  6. At one point a guy in the stands right behind home plate walked to his seat while the pitcher had the ball and was about to throw.  Really? The ushers at the 300 level in Citizen's Bank Ballpark will physically block you from going to your seat at that point.  But it's cool for the a-hole 20 feet behind the catcher can walk to his seat.  I hope his Blackberry ear phone gives him ear cancer.
This probably won't last too long (stupid MLB), but here are the last 9 minutes of the game including McCarver's horrible use of the telestrator, the 5-man infield, and some awesome techno music (seriously?).

And some hot co-eds live-vlog the game.  The scary thing is that I'd rather listen to them than McCarver & Buck.

Now on to my picks (in CAPS) for Week 7 in the league where they play...


Week 7 Records:

Cline -- 9-5 (+$260) (LOTW/BDCS -- 1-1)
Goose -- 9-5 (+$260)

Overall Records:

Cline -- 41-29-1 (.586) +$490 (LOTW/BDCS -- 3-5)
Goose -- 39-31-1 (.557) +$90

Oakland at BALTIMORE(-2.5)

Why don't owners like Jones & Davis just say screw it, I'M THE COACH!  Hell, it worked for Ted Turner.

Arizona at CAROLINA (-1)

I don't know what to think about Carolina, but I still can't take the Cardinals on the road.  In related news, I'm not happy that Boldin is back.  My fantasy team needs Steve "The Breast" (pronounced "BREEST") Breaston to resume his rightful place in the starting line up.

Tampa Bay (-1) at DALLAS

I still think Tampa stinks despite their record, and Dallas has to bounce back after the Rams debacle last week, right?


WASHINGTON (-9) at Detroit

Unless the spread is 20 points or more, I'm pretty much going to be going against Detroit, Kansas City, and Cincy the rest of the way. Unless they play each other, then I'm flipping a coin.

Buffalo (-5) at MIAMI

I don't like too many of the underdogs this week, so this will have to do.  I'm still not sold on Buffalo, mainly because I haven't seen one of their plays, even in a highlight.  That's good enough for me to find another awkward picture of humans and big dogs interacting.

St. Louis at NEW ENGLAND(-2.5)

One of plans the rest of the year is to take New England against not-good teams, especially at home.  My other plan (stolen from Shane) involves hiding nuts that squirrels have buried in my yard.  Later in the winter when it's really cold and they're really hungry, they'll return to the hiding place and be shocked to see that the nuts aren't there any more.  That's when I sell the nuts back to the squirrels at a 20% markup. Genius.

SAN DIEGO (-1.5) at New Orleans

It's in London. Whee...

Could the NFL screw over New Orleans any more? First they lost a home game (and the Giants got an extra one) because of Katrina.  Now they lose another one because of this farce.

I mean, the Saints fans don't deserve this.  They are loyal and passionate.  And fricking hot (NSFW).

Atlanta at PHILLY(-6)

Eagles @1, Phillies/Rays @8, "The Who" (tribute band?) @8.  By the time Game 4 starts tonight, the stadium parking lots should be a puke water park.  There's gonna be a lot of Foster Brooks impersonators down there tonight.  This will make a Dallas MNF game look like a game night at AA.  Also, parking should be fun.

Kansas City at N.Y. JETS (-10)

See above for my Detroit/KC/Cincy theorem.

Cleveland at JACKSONVILLE (-1.5)

If you ever want to play pool for free in Jacksonville, I know a guy who knows a guy.

Cincinnati at HOUSTON (-5.5)

See above for my Detroit/KC/Cincy theorem.

N.Y. GIANTS at Pittsburgh (PICK)

I'll be honest. I have no clue. 

Seattle at SAN FRANCISCO (-4.5)

Seattle loses here and they join the Tripod of Terrible (Detroit/KC/Cincy) to form the Fetid Foursome.

Indianapolis at TENNESSEE (-4)

Indy crushed the poor man's Titans (the Ravens) at home.  But this is on the road against the upper middle class man's Ravens. 

Friday, October 24, 2008

Week 8 NFL PIcks...Goose Edition

To all you Cline followers out there, eager to read his sagelike advice on the NFL, I apologize. His obvious phone-it-in approach to week 7 failed to entertain or enlighten anyone. Not only that, he invoked the spirit of Mark Lemke, a below average second basemen for the Atlanta Braves, and also foisted that horrendous Rob Schneider video on us. (Side note - is that Schneider's house? I feel nauseous.)

I mean seriously - straight picks? No analysis? No witty comments? Shame on you Cline. I thought you liked your fans. To piss on their outstretched arms like that when all they were doing was simply reaching for a little entertainment and gambling advice to get through to their next dumpster found meal, I mean, it's very low class. And no super sexy Kate Beckinsale video is going to smooth things over.

Anyway, because I feel bad, and because I'm generous like Mother Teresa, I welcome all you former Clineiacs to enjoy my picks. Though I'm behind in the current NFL challenge by two games, I feel confident that I will be toasting a Schlitz (the beer that made Milwaukee famous) while enjoying my fill of sushi soon enough. If you'd like to get on that glorious Schlitz-filled, sushi bearing train to awesome town, there's plenty of room. I welcome all. And I promise I won't scrawl my picks down at 12:56 on Sunday afternoon for all three people who accidentally stumbled onto our site looking for Gabe Kaplan porn to see. No - I will put them up in a timely manner, with chocks full of information for you to take under consideration.

It's just the way I am.

And now...On the flipside...the picks!

As always, picks are CAPITALIZED and bold.

OAKLAND @ Baltimore -2.5

This line is begging me to take Baltimore. Begging me. Literally. I just got a call, and the line was like, "hey baby c'mon, take Baltimore, it's such a sexy pick. 2.5 points, that's all you need to give me and then it's gonna all come home for you." Then it sent me this:

It begged me so much, I'm taking Oakland. Mostly because the line is suspiciously low, but also because that video is really creepy.

Arizona @ CAROLINA -1

This line smells too. Carolina is 4-0 at home; Arizona is 1-2 on the road. Why 1 point? I know I heard Boldin wants to make a Bodhi-like resurrection, but I'm not sure if he will. Besides, there's no way he's 100% anyway. I know on Sunday I'm going to be cursing when I see the ticker say "Arizona 21, Carolina 10," but I can't in good faith go against Carolina at home. Fox is too good a coach, and Arizona is too streaky.

Tampa Bay -1 @ DALLAS

Yes the wheels are coming off the Cowboys wagon and it's glorious. JJ goes out and gets a receiver (for whatever reason); it's possible he knew the safety Roy Williams would get hurt and thought the key to his success was to have at least one Roy Williams playing (though that theory doesn't explain Detroit). Romo won't be playing, so that leaves the ageless Brad Johnson to secure the victory. Plus, you have guys like this:

calling out the coach. That can't be good. I mean, I'm gonna go out on a limb and question the mask. Perhaps he doesn't want his identity known lest Wade Phillips sends out goons to rough him up?

I'm still taking the Cowboys. At home, 2 good receivers, a great running game against a Tampa Bay team that I still don't believe in. But that also might be because Gruden announced the Rays' lineup last night in the World Series and I'm bitter (although I did like when he looked off screen, saw Akinori Iwamura's name for the first time (like Gruden is going to practive things like this) and simply said, "leading off, our man Aki.")

WASHINGTON -9 @ Detroit

I wonder if the Ripper (Mark Rypien to you non following football people) called Detroit this week. Or possibly Steve Largent?

BUFFALO -5 @ Miami

I think it's time to start considering Buffalo as legit. Also, could Buffalo have been any more free last week with Jim Kelly cutting spots with the Swami in front of the Jim Kelly statue in Buffalo? This is the sort of analysis you're not getting anywhere else (I'm talking to you Cliniacs).

St. Louis @ NEW ENGLAND -2.5

I realize St. Louis won last week (in a convincing win over Dallas) but I don't see a 2 game win streak in their future. Sorry Mr. Haslett.

San Diego -1.5 @ NEW ORLEANS

So wait a minute - these teams are playing in Wembley in LONDON? When did this happen? Absolutely no press on this one whatsoever. Well, no press other than these two investigative reporters. Check out their over-produced, highly copywright-flaunting show:

If nothing else, I got a good tip on the London wax museum. Anyway, because Madden told me 11,00 times that Tomlinson can't plant anymore due to his nagging toe injury, I'm going with the Aints. Plus, I don't think the Chargers have the firepower if they get into a shootout. Or whatever that would be called across the pond. Now if you'll excuse me, I have to get the torch to ride the lift to use the loo.

Atlanta @ PHILLY -6

It was so easy early in the season when Atlanta was decent at home and poor on the road; then they go to Green Bay and all bets are off. Well, all bets should be off - don't bet on Atlanta if you're smart.

If you have to though, take the green birds this week as they're coming off a bye and they're good when they come off a bye.

Kansas City @ JETS -10

Larry Johnson not playing. Tony Gonzalez unhappy. Me possibly taking snaps. Great googly moogly the Chiefs are not in a great place right now.

Cleveland @ JACKSONVILLE -1.5

Even though caught chopping up some of the white wonder powder in his car (with a Foot Locker card no less) Matt Jones has appealed his suspension and will be playing. Will the suspension looming over him mess him up? Will he play better because the game is a distraction to his legal troubles?

It doesn't matter, they're playing the Browns.

Cincinnati @ HOUSTON -5.5

I can't find one thing to write about this game. Rather than leave it go, I give you this:


Game of the week. Giants are doing a high wire act right now with Burress; that could tumble out anytime. I've gotta think the Steelers just find a way to win at home, with Hines Ward breaking someone's jaw and Pulamalouolau complaining about something.

Seattle @ SAN FRANCISCO -4.5

Don't think 49er fans are pumped about Mike Singletary?

Actually I have no idea if this suggests they're excited at all. I do enjoy the fact that he keeps his voice low lest he wakes his mom up.

INDIANAPOLIS +4 @ Tennessee

Just can't see Tennessee going undefeated, so might as well take the Colts with some points in a national spotlight game. Colts are ready for prime time players. Titans want to be prime time players. It's the clash for the title "Prime-time." No truth to the rumors that Deon Sanders will be at the game.

World Series Game 2 Thoughts

Tonight's broadcast didn't annoy me as much as Game 1. Of course, with the Phillies doing so horrid, that's not saying too much. But as much as I loved bashing them for the previous night's abomination, I have to give them credit for game 2. I felt both stepped up to just below mediocre, which is a pretty significant increase. More on the flip side...

Unfortunately, the same can't be said for the umpires, particularly home plate umpire Kerwin Danley. I know this will sound like sour grapes since the Phillies lost, and blaming the umpiring sounds pathetic, but really. He blew two calls that seemed pretty cut and dry. I'm not complaining about his strike zone or any close call that can go either way. I'm talking about blatantly disregarding a rule (asking for an appeal after ringing up the batter - as I understand it, you can't go back and "correct" a call) and for missing Rollins get hit by a pitch. It wasn't close.

Of course, even I can admit that's not why the Phillies lost the game. They lost the game because they couldn't manufacture runs, and the Rays could.

Strangely, I'm not too upset with this turn of events. I didn't think the Phillies were going to sweep the Rays, and I'm excited the Series is coming back to Philadelphia tied 1-1. Yes, it's frustrating to watch a game in which so many chances are squandered, but really to me it felt the team was complacent and not in a slump.

Of course, this is the opinion of a person 1200 miles away watching on TV half-drunk, so take it for what it is.

Other notes from the game last night...

  • I know it's imperative to stay loose, but what was Rays' first baseman Pena doing before the game with that bizarre clapping under the leg dance?
  • McCarver called Rays' pitcher Price a phenom - he's pitched in 5 games this year. I know he got them out of a jam against Boston, but let's not anoint him Bob Gibson status just yet.
  • McCarver also called Brett Myers one of the "endurable" pitchers on the Phillies staff. I'm guessing he meant "durable" unless he knows something about Myers we don't. Because I'm not sure "tolerable" is a word I would use to describe Myers. Maybe it's just me.
  • Every time I see Joe Maddon I think he's going to start snapping and break out into some spoken word.
  • The same will never be said about Charlie Manuel.
  • BJ Upton didn't run out another double play ball. That makes 3 for him in 2 games. Thanks for coming BJ.

    Links of Interest 10/24

    What did the people in 1968 think 2008 would be like? Find out here.

    Does everyone think Stephen King went bonkers after the auto accident that nearly killed him? Personally I think he was bonkers well before that - in a completely good way of course. Regardless, here's an interview with him. (from Salon)

    It's amazing the planet is still here with all its population. I wonder how many times people's fingers hovered over buttons that could completely annihilate us all. Russians and US guys' alike. (from Washington Post)

    Who doesn't like pictures of giant holes? (from The Sun)

    I know it's an irrational fear, because there's nothing to suggest it could happen soon, but I'm still wary of the sun going out. (from Popular Science)

    The Good...the Bad...the Beautiful #22


    Like Cousteau can find a dry spot in the ocean.

    Bad and Beautiful on the flip side...

    THE BAD:

    Thank God I wasn't there for this.


    If you don't think this is beautiful, you're sick in the head.

    Thursday, October 23, 2008

    World Series Game 1 Thoughts

    As a Phillies fan, I certainly have a bias. toward the team. So take my words with a grain of salt. I try to be as objective as possible, but won't pretend that my Phillies allegiance won't creep out - sometimes without me even knowing it.

    That said, I don't believe anyone will defend the McCarver/Buck announcing team.

    Let's simply gloss over the opinion that I believe they are openly rooting for the Rays. Between raving about BJ Upton's performance (even though he slug trailed it to first on two double play balls) and anointing Carl Crawford second base in the ninth if he walked because of his "good legs," these 2 couldn't talk enough about the Rays' ability. Never mind they got Coltrained.

    No, I'll ignore that due to my "bias." I'm more angry with their inability to call a clean game and generate excitement for two teams playing in the world series. On the flip side, you can read more of my "unbiased" opinion...

    What happened during the balk call? Regardless of your thoughts on it, both Buck and McCarver did a serviceable job explaining the rule (can't deceive runner - which means you can't step toward home and throw to first). To me, it seemed as though Hamels kinda stepped in between the two, which them positions it as a judgment call, and no umpire on the field reacted. Over the replays, McCarver and Buck seemed undecided on what was correct. That's fine too - like I said, it appeared to be a judgment call.

    What happened when they came back from break however countered their notion. Buck immediately switches his "undecided" position, and goes with, "we're looking at what we clearly think is a balk." Really Joe? It's funny, since a balk can be called by any of the umps on the field (one of the few calls in baseball that has this autonomy) and yet none of the 6 (yes I realize 2 umps are in the outfield) flinched. But to you, Joe Buck, it was clear. Thanks.

    Same balk weirdness - cool to hear Maddon and home plate umpire talking about it during the half inning. Maddon kept mentioning something about "reading," and "he's a reader," which is a term I've never heard before. I wasn't sure if it was a baseball term or Maddon was just using it as a description. Buck, in a rare moment of intelligence, apparently thinks the same thing, as he turns to McCarver and asks him about the term. To which McCarver basically ignores. Thanks Tim for your insight on nothing. If you don't know something, admit it. It's more endearing and less assholishness.

    One other thing. I get hyping up BJ Upton during his at-bat in the 8th. Tight game, hot hitter (even with his putrid performance in this game up to this point). Totally cool. What I don't get (from a FOX perspective) is why not hype Ryan Howard in a similar situation? I keep hearing about the terrible ratings this match up is going to get, so why not, you know try to hype stars on both teams? You know, for casual fans that have no specific rooting interest? Instead, we hear about how horrible Ryan Howard is performing at the moment, and the fact that the Phillies have stranded the China's population on the bases. Never mind that the Rays couldn't get guys on base - let's not quibble with important stuff like facts. Let's tear down how horrible Ryan Howard is at the plate.

    Luckily, I'm not the only one who feels this way.

    Other random thoughts about the game:

    Rollins at the plate looked terrible, especially the second time he struck out on a high fast ball. Luckily, he's still Baryshnikov out in the field. What a great double play turn to stay out of trouble.

    Ditto Howard. Luckily, in baseball you can erase poor performances the next night with great ones.

    Thank you Utley.

    Rays bullpen looks formidable. The starters don't look bad either. They really look like a good team.

    Anyone else notice the shirtless guys on the third base line? Look, if you're going to go shirtless, it's either gotta be really cold (think Lambeau in January) so viewers think you're crazy, or you have to be acting like a mongoose on crystal meth the whole time so viewers think you're crazy. Sitting watching the game shirtless makes you look lame.

    The cowbell story (the Rays owner saw the Walken skit online and figured it was a great idea)? I want someone walking behind him all day ringing one of those things in his face.

    Even though McCarver/Buck refused to acknowledge it (with producers at least flashing to them in the stands) nice to see Phillies fans representing down there.

    Oh and one more thing...

    Links of Interest 10/23

    Lost season 5 is still months away, but that doesn't mean we can't get jazzed for it with this promotional trailer! (from eonline)

    (Unrelated: Watching Law & Order: Criminal Intent this past Sunday, I saw Michael Emerson playing a creepy guy living a double life and getting caught up in the stress. The performance reminded me of Ben, sans the stressed out part. I wonder if the Lost producers cast him based on his performance here. It's not like he had too much else on his reel.)

    Hey homeless people: there's still a chance for you to make it big in Hollywood like these people.

    Remember when Iraq was the big deal and we completely ignored Afghanistan? Well, either Iraq is in decent shape or we just don't care, because we're finally starting to turn some attention to Afghanistan. In just the past few days I've seen reports from embedded journalists with US troops in Afghanistan. And here's a more detailed look of what's going on over there.
    (from Rolling Stone)

    Luke Skywalker - idiot.

    A good rule of thumb I like to follow. If you see Gary Busey approaching you, tread lightly. The man is insane.

    Tuesday, October 21, 2008

    Handicapping the World Series

    Guest blogger Geoff is here today, giving us an exclusive look into the upcoming World Series. It's probably a look that you're not going to find anywhere else. Some people handicap based on the lineups, some handicap based on pitching, but Geoff looks at the intangibles.

    I apologize for the multiple Phillies related posts these past few days, but not enough to stop them coming in the next few days. Them making the World Series is kind of a big deal. Enough from me though, on the flip side read how you can win money on the Fall Classic with Geoff's analysis...

    I was daydreaming on the ride home and actually started writing notes in traffic. Not a great idea (my deciding to take notes, not the concept)…

    Trying to handicap the World Series? Don’t waste your time scouring box scores and watching the so-called experts run their yaps. When deciding whether to lay -145 on the Rays or try to make +125 on the Phillies, you need to take it a step further…

    World Series History

    Philadelphia – Fourth trip to the series since 1980. Only the Yankees, Braves and Cardinals can claim more.

    Tampa Bay – First winning season ever.

    EDGE: Phillies, they lead 1-0

    Intangible World Series History

    Philadelphia – One world title in 130 years? Are you kidding me?

    Tampa Bay – Fellow expansioners from Miami have made the playoffs twice and won the Series twice.

    EDGE: Tampa Bay. Series tied 1-1


    Philadelphia – Good ol’ Cholly. Known as the Red Devil in Japan. 0-1 in World Series as a manager. Can’t understand much of what he says but I hear he keeps a loose clubhouse.

    Tampa – Madden embodies cool. Bleached hair, black glasses, probably rocks out to some Pixies after wins and drowns his losses in some Smiths. Perfect coach for a young team.

    EDGE: Tampa Bay. Rays lead 2-1

    Best Kalas

    Philadelphia – Hall of Famer Harry in the booth. One of the most distinguished voices in sports broadcasting. Pros: loves booze and the ladies. Cons: Thinks 300-footers are home runs, sings “High Hopes” ad nauseum.

    Tampa Bay – Todd has been with Tampa Bay since its inception.

    EDGE: Todd has seen a lot of baseball in his day, but Harry’s seen worse and persevered. Edge Phillies. Tied 2-2

    Best Stats

    Philadelphia – Ryan Howard struck out exactly 199 times each in 2007 and 2008.

    Tampa Bay – True story – I was this close to driving to Tampa in 2006 to get a Dewayne Staats bobblehead. Best baseball voice going today and handsome to boot.

    EDGE: Trick question. This is not even a contest. The category should have been Best Staats. Tampa Bay in a blowout. Rays lead 3-2

    Better Play On Words (Or Numbers)

    Philadelphia – Creative fan devised a wheel that, when spun, reads “Champs ‘80” on one half and “Champs ‘08” on the other half

    Tampa Bay – Stud third baseman shares a name (almost) with a weathered actress that has been neither hot nor relevant for a couple of years.

    EDGE: Mesmerized like a celibate Elaine Benes staring at spinning tires, so am I with the spinning Phillies wheel. Phils easily. Going to a decisive seventh game.


    Philadelphia – Some big green thing called the Phillie Phanatic. Brilliant dancer. Spend some time at the ballpark watching the subtle humor in his antics.

    Tampa Bay – Some big blue thing called Raymond. Kind of like a Phanatic without the belly.

    EDGE: The Phanatic loves the Schillometer. Edge Phils. Parade down Broad Street. Collect $125 for every $100 you wagered.

    Notes: In the late 90s Geoff and myself created the Schillometer, a high-tech bed sheet designed to record the number of strikeouts Schilling had in a season. Plastered on the wall in section 738 of the Vet (RIP) during every Schilling start, it gained a mild following of some of the stranger characters that would come down to the ball park to witness mediocrity. Enough of a crowd would develop that occasionally the Phillie Phanatic would come up and visit. Unrelated, we also saw from these seats a Ben Franklin impersonator almost behead a child in the first row of seats on the field with a hot dog gun.

    Links of Interest 10/21

    Cool article from Dave Sedaris, one of the funnier gentlemen out there. (from the New Yorker)

    This presidential election has been relatively tame when it comes to attack ads. And that's a shame really, because there's nothing quite like an attack ad. If you don't believe me, check these out. I'm partial to the alluded golden shower from the first one. (from Esquire)

    If you don't have children under the age of 4 I doubt you're watching Yo Gabba Gabba, but it's the latest kid/stoner craze. Of course, when it hits the mainstream like this, it might be on its way out. I forget how these things work. (from USA Today)

    Regardless of what you think, I know I'm letting my child watch a show that has Biz Markie teaching beat boxing:

    Oh sure bottled water might look better to you, but we all know what Evian spelled backwards says. Tap water is where it's at. (from New York Times)

    You've seen the ads, (well if you're doing it right) and you may even have tried it out (I'm not here to judge)...but if you haven't, then this article about Adult FriendFinder might be perfect for you. (from Radar Online)

    The insanity of air racing

    Brought up in a recent post, the sport of air racing looks dangerous, awesome, and insane. And because I'm committed to the visitors of my site, I've included some video or this ridiculous sport, courtesy of, a site I'm sure you'll be able to see - even at work.

    Red Bull Air Race from Khedara Ariyaratne on Vimeo.

    Monday, October 20, 2008

    Sunday television - a guide to flipping channels

    Sunday afternoons are usually reserved for football. However, when your team isn't playing, sometimes it can be hard to stay focused on the games your local CBS and FOX affiliates are giving you. That's what happens when you don't have the Dish Network.

    This is the exact scenario I found myself in yesterday. With the Eagles on a bye week, my rooting interest in football took a week off as well. That left me with a lax attitude toward football in general (not to mention that since the Phillies are in the World Series, football really hasn't taken hold yet). So while I had every intention in the world to watch football on my couch yesterday, my remote began to wonder.

    It didn't help that FOX gave me the Gians/49ers game, while CBS gave me the titanic Steelers/Bengals battle. It's amazing I didn't turn off the television completely and go outside to enjoy the day. But I'm a warrior and I battled through that horrible, brief thought. On the flip side, I'll share what kept me inside...

    My first stray from the football games occurred when I found Angelie Jolie on TNT in Lara Croft: Cradle of Life. The second installment of the possibly successful franchise (I really have no idea) had the guy who played Caesar from HBO's Rome as the bad guy, as well as a well coiffed Gerard Butler, pre 300. But let's be honest, I'm not watching for those two guys - I'm watching for Jolie and her outfit changes.

    Sadly, if you remember LC: CoL, other than the fantastic intro (Jolie in her skintight silver diving suit) the rest of her outfits don't hold up. She wears safari gear a lot, and a bunch of Japanese robes. This is not the Lara Croft I signed up for. Anyway, it begrudgingly made the remote control loop, but not much time was spent with it every time I flipped to it. I did find, in researching this story, that you can apparently watch the entire movie on youtube. Start here if you care to.

    What did get a lot of my attention (after watching botched field goals and interceptions in the Giants game for a few minutes) was the MSU/Minnesota women's volleyball game on ESPN 2. Women's volleyball is rarely televised, so this was a treat. The other treat was #17 on MSU's squad: Vanessa King, a 6 foot junior, flying around and taking out Minnesota's attack. I'm not sure I've ever seen a 6 foot redheaded lady before.

    One channel up from ESPN 2, Comcast countered football with darts. If you've never seen darts before, you're not missing much. It made my rotation however, because of the announcer; not the two guys doing darts commentary (how far have you fallen when you have to give play-by-play for darts), but the guy at the actual venue, screaming the results to the crowds (yes crowds) on hand to witness two guys that make bowlers look cool throw pointy sticks at cork. The traditional darts' announcer (it's true, I've watched darts before) like an extra from a Guy Ritchie movie who enjoys gargling glass. It's really quite uncanny. I know it's difficult to truly hear it from this video, but it's worth it.

    (Unrelated - do you see that crowd. Sure, "honey, I'm going out to watch Darts," is a great excuse to tell your wife to go out and booze up, but still.

    The top of the hour rolled around by this point, giving me a whole slew of new shows to flip through, including the movie Pitch Black (not going there too much) a dog show (2 hours?) and an episode of Family Feud (can we collectively vote to destroy all versions of the Karn-hosted Feud? Thanks.) I also thought I got lucky hitting AMC and seeing the In-Laws was on, but quickly realized it wasn't the classic with Arkin and Falk, but the remake with Brooks and Douglas. See the Karn sentiments to see what I think about this travesty.

    It wasn't all bad though. Sci-fi gave me Sasquatch Mountain, a tour de force starring a bunch of people who more than likely have starred in sci-fi original movies and Lance Henriksen. Who doesn't love Sasquatch? Here's the trailer. I have no idea why they chose to shoot this entire movie with a blue gel on the camera, but I went with it (at least the first 6 minutes)...

    And here's, quite unbelievably, a panel at the Los Angeles Comic Convention, discussing the movie, Sasquatch Mountain (aka Devil on the Mountain):

    I can't sit through more than 45 seconds of this (I really just feel embarrassed for everyone involved) but honestly, why introduce your biggest star (Lance Henricksen - also the guy everyone at the convention is there to see) first? Save the big reaction for the end, right? It's also shocking that this is part 1 of 3! I can't do it. I want to. I really do want to watch all 3 parts, I just know I can't.

    Luckily, I didn't have to watch the blue-tinted Bigfoot very much, since I next stumbled upon the return of the greatest sport involving trampolines and attitude.

    I'm of course talking about Slamball.

    Rather than stupidly attempt to explain the awesomeness that is Slamball, I instead give you this:

    To top it all off, we got a playoff game, announced by none other than Gus Johnson and Tom Tolbert. So excited by this duo, I immediately scrounged the web in hopes of finding any footage with these two announcing - and I came up with this. I did enjoy (while not 100% understanding) Tolbert's exclamation of, "Give that man a steak dinner!" Thankfully, that is on the video.

    Regardless of the awfulness of these choices, it still gave me plenty of fodder to pass the time. What's worse is that I don't feel I wasted my time whatsoever. And that's the problem - when I can be entertained by this stuff, there's no hope for me being productive in life whatsoever.

    Links of Interest 10/20

    Someone's been taking photos at just the right moment! Cool freeze fame photography.

    That guy that wrote the fairly famous How to Lose Friends and Alienate People? He visited the set of the movie about his book.

    Pretty cool article about the lengths the British went to attempt to infiltrate the IRA. Of course, I'd hate to be the guy that actually had to clean the clothes.

    Rolling Stone's take on the life (and unfortunately, the death) of David Foster Wallace.

    Synecdoche, Charlie Kaufman's directorial debut is coming out soon. Here's a look at the person behind it.

    Sunday, October 19, 2008

    NFL Picks Week #7 (Cline) - I Miss Mark Lemke

    Well, I've procrastinated long enough. I was all set to go into a lengthy diatribe about why you should root for the Devil Rays. Then I realized (a) they're now just the  Rays, which is dumb, (b) they still haven't won the ALCS, and (c) the best I could do in terms of reasons to root for them were this and this:

    Yikes. Go Sox?

    Either way, this is what the Phils have going for them:

    To make amends to my loyal readers for the Rob Schneider vid, here's something to cleanse the palate:

    Mean Magazine Presents Kate Beckinsale in Rollergirl from Mean Magazine on Vimeo.

    Now on to my picks (in CAPS) for Week 7 in the league where they play...

    ...FOR PAY!

    Week 6 Records:

    Cline -- 8-6 (+$60) (LOTW/BDCS -- 2-0)
    Goose -- 11-3 (+$660)

    Overall Records:

    Cline -- 32-24-1 (.571) +$230 (LOTW/BDCS -- 2-4)
    Goose -- 30-26-1 (.536) -$170

    San Diego (-2.5) at BUFFALO
    New Orleans (-1) at CAROLINA
    MINNESOTA at Chicago (PICK)
    PITTSBURGH (-7.5) at Cincinnati
    TENNESSEE (-7) at Kansas City

    BALTIMORE at Miami (-2)
    San Francisco at N.Y. GIANTS (-6.5)
    DALLAS (-6.5) at St. Louis
    Detroit at HOUSTON (-6.5)
    INDIANAPOLIS (-3) at Green Bay
    N.Y. JETS (-3.5) at Oakland
    Cleveland at WASHINGTON (-1)
    SEATTLE at Tampa Bay (-9)

    Denver (-2.5) at NEW ENGLAND

    Friday, October 17, 2008

    Week 7 NFL Picks from Goose

    I was tired.

    It had been a whirlwind week, with 3 Phillies games (Sunday, Tuesday, Wednesday) that went late into the night (at least late for a dad who hasn't slept past 8:00 in the past 2.5 years, due to lovely little girl who makes a meth addict look mellow), so that by 10:30 on Thursday night I hit the wall. The Rays, taking care of the Red Sox (how did that wind up?) couldn't hold my interest, so I decided to take a run through the channels one more time before turning in.

    And that's how I found myself staying up until 12:30 watching Dante's Peak.

    Not seen Dante's Peak? Shame on you...

    What does that have to do with NFL picks? Absolutely nothing. I just wanted to brag about watching Dante's Peak for the 37 th time. In fact, I wouldn't be surprised if there were a post dedicated to Dante's Peak in the near future.

    Anyway let's get on to the picks. I gots hot last week (11-3) and I'm ready to keep it going. Check it out on the flip side...

    As always, picks are CAPITALIZED and bold.

    San Diego @ BUFFALO -2.5

    The Chargers played a well executed game last week against the Patriots. They won by a lot. But that was at home, against a team that is in disarray. Maybe, maybe if they had Dan Fouts (and Rolf Benirschke) they win, but without those guys, the Bills avenge a 28 year old loss.

    New Orleans -1 @ CAROLINA

    What Carolina team will show up? What New Orleans team will show up? I don't think anyone knows. That makes it tough to handicap the game. I predict John Fox gets his guys up for this game after seeing they're an home underdog to a flighty New Orleans team.

    Minnesota @ CHICAGO PK

    I've been on the Orton train for awhile now. I liked since Purdue. I liked him better than the Sex Cannnon. I liked him better than Griese. How can I not. Look at that handsome fellow. Vikings shouldn't have won a squeaker last week, and the Bears shouldn't have lost one. I think they both were looking ahead to this week. Let's give it to the home team and the handsome one.

    Pittsburgh @ CINCINNATI +7.5

    More than a touchdown for a home dog, immediately has me leaning toward Cincinnati. Couple that with Chad Johnson saying the coaches are conspiring against him, and I of course have to go with the Bengals. I know, it doesn't make sense. And neither does this...

    TENNESSEE -7 @ Kansas City

    It used to be that Arrowhead was a tough place for teams to play in. Then Herm Edwards came along and promptly made it opponent friendly by bringing down the talent of the Chiefs. The Titans thank him this week.

    BALTIMORE @ Miami -2

    I'm still not comfortable with Miami getting points. I am comfortable with Jan Hammer's wardrobe and awesomeness in this video:

    Sadly, he won't be playing in this game, so I'm taking the ancient Ravens.

    San Francisco @ NY GIANTS -6.5

    Eli Manning might have to wear a flak jacket. It won't matter.

    Unrelated, where can I get my hands on a flak jacket? If I were Eli Manning I would wear this all the time. Imagine the chicks he could get - heck I'd get one and Snake Eyes around town like a ninja. I had no idea they looked like this! I thought they were strait jacket looking. This totally blows my mind.

    -6.5 @ St. Louis

    The Rams are a boutique pick this week because of the uncertainty and turmoil currently swirling around the Dallas Cowboys. This article pretty much sums up that belief quite nicely. But let us not forget - these are the Rams. Jim Haslett is not a wizard. Wait a couple weeks for the Cowboys to implode.

    Detroit @ HOUSTON -6.5

    Let's take a look who's announcing this game...

    Chris Rose and J.C. Pearson

    Alright, I have no idea who either is, so let's google them...Ok, it looks like Chris Rose is the host of that Best Damn Sports Show show. I have a certain amount of pride not knowing that.

    J.C. Pearson is a former NFL player, a defensive back for the Chiefs and Vikings.

    So we know at least 2 people will be watching the game.

    INDIANAPOLIS -3 @ Green Bay

    Which is worse - the Peytons in that stupid oreo cookie commercial...

    ...or the Williams Sister in their commercial?

    Trick question! Both are equally horrible!

    Peyton Manning is still good enough to beat a schizophrenic Packers team.

    JETS -3.5 @ Oakland

    I'm invoking my "I have no idea how to pick a Raiders game" card here. You have been warned. My thinking is that Favre doesn't get beat by a team who recently switched coaches, but I really have no idea.

    Cleveland @ WASHINGTON -1

    Both teams played an unusual game last week; Cleveland, because they're not used to winning this year, and Washington, vice versa. I'm predicting each team to fall back in line with how they've been playing so far this season, and look at last week as the anomaly.

    Seattle @ TAMPA BAY -9

    Everyone keeps harping on Detroit as the worst team in the league - I might suggest those people start turning toward Seattle a little bit. It's hard to take Tampa Bay -9, but if my other choice is taking Seattle on the road with those points, I'm going the other way.

    DENVER -2.5 @ New England

    I think no matter who plays New England, they're always going to be pumped up for the game. New England won all their games last year, and did it with flair, style and in-your-face-attitude. Payback's a bitch.