Arbitrary Commentary: Manic Monday

Posted: Monday, December 13, 2010 in Uncategorized

Good morning, Party People; here’s hoping that your Monday isn’t sucking too hard.  Considering that my beloved Chicago Bears were completely embarrassed and annihilated by the New England Patriots and Tom Brady’s hair, we’re not doing all that bad out here.  And since we actually watched something other than football and football highlights last night for the first time in six weeks, I feel like popping off on a few buzz-worthy topics this morning.  OK, to the water-cooler!

  • Speaking of the NFL, how about the inflatable roof of the Minnesota Metrodome collapsing? Did you see the video of it from the inside?  Pretty crazy stuff.  You just know that Michael Irvin imagined all that snow pouring into the stadium as cocaine.  What a shit-show: the Metrodome is like the white-trashy, above-ground-pool of stadiums with that big bubble roof.  Doesn’t it snow heavily in Minneapolis quite frequently?  If you are a Vikings fan, you might as well just give up the Ghost.  It’s never gonna happen for y’all.
  • And speaking of big wet sloppy collapses, did you happen to catch the next Speaker of the House, John Boehner, bawling and blubbering all over himself on 60 Minutes? (here’s the whole piece; and its gets awkward at the 5:30 and 12:40 marks) There’s nothing wrong with men crying and showing emotion; but Jesus Christ!  Get. It. Together, man.  That shit last night was downright uncomfortable.  First of all, the subject matter seems a little strange to let flow the water-works like that: who cries like that when talking about kids and the ‘American Dream’ in this context?  (That is, unless deep down you are uncomfortable negotiating “the American Dream” with consistent cuts to educational spending.)  And the other thing that Mr. Boehner would do well to remember in the future: never continue speaking once the crying begins. It is best to just shut the fuck up for a few seconds until you can speak without sounding like some pathetic, gurgling fool (just ask legendary Phillies 3rd Baseman Mike Schmidt or my favorite fucking crybaby and phallic photog, Brett Favre.)  So again, men and women alike, do us all a favor, and let the tears pass a little before speaking.
  • So GawkerMedia got the shit hacked out of them by a group calling themselves Gnosis or something, apparently because of Gawker’s arrogance in taunting 4Chan for not being able to accomplish such a hack. I’m a big fan of Gawker, but I suppose they sort of asked for it: a site like this had better have top-notch security, because they sure do piss a LOT of people off.  One result of the hack is that all the usernames and passwords of commentators have been compromised, which sucks, because now I have to go and change all of my passwords from “2012NJSitchAbs4life.”  Shit; that was a good one. (UPDATE: If you are concerned that your personal info may be compromised via the Gawker hack, you can check if the email associated with the data is among those released by the hackers here, at Slate.com.  And I am happy to report that the Monday morning Punter is in the clear!)

OK, Party People, that’s it for now.  Have a good day, and try not to kill each other out there.

The Rooster

Posted: Wednesday, December 8, 2010 in Life, Uncategorized
Tags: , , , ,

image

My office now doubles as a sniper-perch because we have an issue with squirrels getting up into our soffit (the area between the roof and walls that leads to the attic.)  There are few sounds worse than that of some creature scurrying about inside your walls as you lie in bed trying to fall asleep, especially in a new home.  I need to make sure that these glorified rats are out of our house before getting the entry points (they are pushing their way through the siding where the soffit meets in corners) sealed up, or else we could have them tearing about up there as they are trapped and dying a cruel death; and then there is the putrid aftermath.  Bottom-line: they gotta go!

Of course trapping the squirrels is an option, and one that I spent time and money pursuing.  I purchased a Have-a-Heart (r) humane trap, and fully intended to snatch em up and take them on a nice little trip across the river to New Jersey (apparently, squirrels will find their way “home,”covering distances of at least 10 miles.)  After doing some research, this option became less and less appealing, as I learned that trapping and releasing isn’t very humane at all.  Squirrels maintain their own territory, and one displaced to a new area would most likely be doomed to attack or death of starvation.  Also, I wasn’t thrilled with the idea of transporting frightened, wild animals in my truck (illegally, most likely.)  And on top of that, the creature could injure itself as it bombed around inside the trap.  But all these issues became moot, because these clever fucks would not get into that trap.  I watched them gobble up the chunky peanut-butter left out in the woods in front of my office window, but once it was placed inside the trap, the squirrels approached but wisely declined to enter.

The trapping “solution” became a huge waste of time, with the setting, checking, and returning each night (squirrels only come out during the day, and I wasn’t interested in catching anything else.)  The squirrels continued to taunt me with their frolicking and foraging outside my window by day, and their scratching in the walls at night.  Clearly it was time to explore other options.  And I wasn’t about to pay a few hundred bucks for someone to take care of this problem for us.  I’m a half-assed do-it-youselfer, after all.

I decided to purchase a high powered, spring-action, break-barrel, Daisy (r) 1000 Powerline air rifle, that fires both pointed, snub, and hollow-point pellets at 1000 feet-per-second.  (Ralphie would have blown his fucking head off with this bad-boy at the end of A Christmas Story.) If I’m gonna shoot these little bastards, I’m not looking to just injure them and cause undue suffering; this Daisy (r) Powerline – named “Robin” – will most definitely produce a quick kill with a well placed shot to the center-mass.  And after successfully sighting my first ever scope, I fully intend on delivering a well placed shot to the center-mass.

(Not for nothing, but the “Sniper Solution” to our squirrel problem is by far the most fun, that’s for sure.  I’ve been having an absolute blast sighting my scope and taking target practice, and I’m getting pretty good as I get more comfortable shooting and breaking in “Robin the Rifle.”  When I’m working and writing at my desk, I take occasional target breaks and fire some pellets right from my office window, pictured above, at a series of cans and targets I positioned in the woods.  I really need to get a picture of “Robin’s” rifle barrel sticking out of my window from a distance, just to see how bad I am freaking out the neighborhood.)

Now look, I don’t particularly enjoy the act of killing (well, animals, anyway).  Hunting and fishing don’t really do it for me, because, again, I take no pleasure in killing animals.  But I sure as shit don’t particularly enjoy animal breeding within the confines of our home, and I take even less pleasure in paying hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars to repair the extensive damage that squirrels are capable of causing.

And with all that being said, know that I have absolutely zero problem with people who hunt and/or fish.  As a general rule,  I try to keep my hypocrisy at as low and manageable a level as possible: I’m no fucking vegan or anything, and unless you are, you have no right to bitch about hunting.  Because, as far as I’m concerned, hunting an animal, and quickly taking it out in its own environment, is far more of a humane scenario than that same animal being raised from birth in a horrible, disgusting, food-factory (and I love food-factory products.)  And of course there is the whole over-population issues for some game animals that leads to a brutal, starving existence.  But I digress…

In the wintertime, squirrels limit their outdoor activity to the mornings only, and then spend the rest of the day and night in the confines of their nests, which in this case, happens to be the warmth and comfort of our fucking house!  And in the case of really bad or cold weather, squirrels can just chill out in their dens for days!

If these little rodents had just settled for a tree nest like most of their brethren already do, we would have no problem co-existing on this tiny plot of earth; but noooo, the squirrels around here have been living large for over a year, after movin’ on up to a deluxe apartment in the sky.

So starting tomorrow morning, the motherfuckin’ rent is due!

Eat Your Heart Out, Ralphie.

Posted: Tuesday, December 7, 2010 in Life

image

Happy Holidays, party people; hope it all rocks.

And to all you squirrels up in my soffit, with my new Daisy air rifle, I will shoot your fucking eyes out.

MERRY CHRISTMAS!

On Voting

Posted: Tuesday, November 2, 2010 in Current Events, Politics, Uncategorized
Tags: , ,

If you don’t vote today, come on, it’s time to face facts: you are kind of a shithead.

Voting is so easy.  Voting feels good, almost orgasmic even.  Think about it: the act of Voting is like the concentrated release of all the beefs and gripes and hopes and ideals that have been pent over time.  Voting is finally having our say.  Even if the system is rigged, and all our votes go uncounted, at the very least Voting reinforces the illusion that we live in a free and democratic society.

Again, Voting is easy, especially nowadays.  Even if you are forced to vote during rush hour and are stuck in a long line, with the tiny computers in our cellphones, you could get your banking done, set your DVR, and check Facebook, all while listening to some fresh tracks on your iPod.  And Voting is pretty fun anyway: I love people watching and trying to guess who that asshole is voting for.  And if you are like me, and have never been polled (especially since most of us youngerish people don’t even have hard land-lines) that makes our votes the monkeys-in-the-wrench, so to speak.  There is nothing better than proving the polls and pundits wrong.

Polling places are well within a reasonable distance to you and your home. The internet makes them easy to find, and is a great resource for learning about your district and the candidates.

Voting is sexy.  So come on!  Get in the mix.  Make your voice heard, because only once every year do we get the opportunity to pop off like our Forefathers intended.

So Party People, please VOTE.

On Our FF League’s Dirty Laundry…

Posted: Friday, September 24, 2010 in Fantasy Football, Media, Sports

Greetings.  I’ve decided to post our Fantasy Football league’s weekly (or bi-weekly) Power Ranking write-ups, written by your’s truly.  Why?  Because I’m a bigtime narcissist, and think my Power Rankings are the shit; plus, a Fantasy Football post should should generate a healthy number of hits here.

So without further ado, I present to you, the PimpNational Football League’s first Power Rankings of the 2010 campaign.  Enjoy, you fucking nerds.

The first Power Rankings of the 2010 PFL season are FINALLY FUCKING HERE!  Again, sorry for not having them out last week, but be prepared for the occasional week-without-PRs, as they are very labor intensive, and my dance-card is a LOT fuller these days.  But I pledge to never go more than a week without doing the PR Write-ups.  Just to recap the PR format for y’all: We the Media weight our analysis heavily on teams’ most recent performance, including bench play, but factor in previous weeks production as well.  We also factor in the CBS PRs, which are based soley on a 3-category aggregate ranking score: CBS ranks all teams 12-1 in Record, Total Points, and Breakdown (which is a team’s “All Play” record), which leads to the PR score.  For example, the #1 ranked team with a 35 is Cawley’s Teflon Dons, who are ranked tops in Points and Breakdown and get 12 points accordingly for each, and tied for tops in record, which therefore gets them 11 points.  Got it?  Often the PFL and CBS PRs will not jive, but we will always include the CBS ranks next to the team name, along with record, total points, and Last Week’s PFL rank.  Got it?  Good.

1.) TEFLON DONS (2-0; 243.9; cbs-1)
Brian Cawley’s Gotti Crew are #1 With A Bullet, appropriately enough, in this, the first Power Rankings of the 2010 campaign.  The PFL’s highest scoring team thus far, the Teflon Dons followed up a WK-1 high of 126 with another impressive output of 117 in Week 2.  Phil Rivers is off to a nice, consistent start, with 27+ and 24+ in the first two weeks, respectively.  The running attack has also, well, hit the ground running, so to speak: Forte blew up in the passing game, with over 150 yards and 2 TD, en route to a huge 33+ WK-1, and added another 5 catches including a TD, good for 15+ in WK-2; Gore posted a serviceable double-digit Wk-1 (11.3) based on some rushing and 6 catches, but went off against the Saints on MNF for 32.3, thanks to 7 receptions that included a TD to go along with 112 RuYd and a RuTD.  With these two excellent pass-catching RBs, not to mention a 3rd on the bench in Pierre Thomas (8 catches in Wk-2), Cawley is looking set at this position.  Also, it looks like Miles Austin has picked up where he left off last season, with back-to-back 10-catch games to start the season, and a 22.4 avg.  So the Dons have their #1WR all set too.  Rivers, Gore, Forte, and Austin makes for QUITE the fearsome foursome.  And Dustin Keller’s 21 (7rec,115ReYd,1TD) from the bench looks like a sign of FF greatness to come.  Also, the Sainst DST are looking like they should be a productive unit throughout the season.  The only possible rat in the Gotti Crew could come from the WR depth, or lack thereof.  After Austin, there is little to strike fear into the hearts of Cawley’s opponents.  Garcon was drafted to be the #2WR, but hasn’t even played like a #3 yet; same goes for Meachem and Naanee.  Still, even without a productive #2WR, the Dons should crack the magic 100 mark most weeks based on their Big-4 alone; add some consistent production from another WR, and the TE slot, and you have a lethal team here.

2.) CLEAVELAND STEAMERS (2-0; 201.8; cbs-2)
Lex has not had much PFL success, since joining the PFL a few years back.  But this year, Lex and his 2-0 Steamers are looking primed to shit all over the competition and make their 1st playoff appearance.  This roster has performed well, top-to-bottom, and still has yet to get the most from a solid backfield.  Aaron Rodgers followed up a dicey 2-INT, 16+ WK-1, with a big 30+ WK-2, that included a RuTD; this ability to run for TDs in the redzone makes the Packers QB THAT much more dangerous.  The aforementioned RBs, specifically Ced Benson and Ronnie Brown, have been producing thus far – each scored a TD in WK-1, and rushed for over 75 yards in WK-2 – but have yet to post any 20s, which are forthcoming.  The depth here is looking nice too: Donald Brown had one of his best games as a pro on Sunday night, with a TD and 69 RuYd; and recent waiver pick-up Brandon Jackson scored TD in place of injured Ryan Grant, for Green Bay.  Perhaps the biggest news through 2 weeks for Cleaveland has been Wes Welker’s great start.  In the Draft Grades, we said it was a calculated risk taking Wes at the end of 3rd as a #1 WR, and so far it is paying off, big time.  Welker’s game has shown no signs of being hampered by his late-season knee blowout: He’s doing his usual reception thing, averaging 7 of them per game thus far.  But now Welker is scoring TDs as well – 3 of them already – which could elevate The Great White Hope to elite WR status.  Speaking of TDs, Donald Driver has scored a pair, and just continues to defy age and FF wisdom, as he remains Rodgers #1 safety valve and redzone target.  If this wasn’t enough, Lex has some impressive WR depth so far: in WK-1 Gaffney had a TD; as did Collie, whose 73-yd TD contributed mightily to a huge 25.8 output, that also included another 10 receptions; Collie again scored in Wk-2.  Oh, and Lex also has TO: scary depth here.  And speaking of depth, how about D-Mac’s 426 bench passing yards?  Not bad for a #2; McNabb looks good.  And rounding out this very well built squad is an excellent K/DST combo: the Jets and Mason Crosby each scored 10 points in the first 2 weeks; Lex doesn’t have to worry about playing the matchups here, which is nice.  The Steamers are looking fierce so far, and even though Cleveland, OH will never win a championship, CLEAVEland, CT certainly seems to be on the right track.

3.) THE WIGGLES (1-1; 214.4; cbs-3)
Miesse’s crew was solid enough in Wk-1 with 86+ in a losing effort to a tough B’More Omars squad (who scored 99), but they rebounded VERY nicely in Wk-2 to get their first victory and the week’s top scoring output as well, with 128.  This big week is made all the more impressive when considering Brady’s poor outing – the Jets turned him over 3 times, and limited him to just under 16.  Brady was on point in Wk-1, however, with 3TDs and 28+.  Brady is gonna post big numbers this year, because the Pats ground game is virtually non-existent, as opposed to the Wiggles rushing attack, which is robust and downright scary through 2-weeks.  Adrian Peterson could have his biggest season yet, based on his violent runs and return to the focal point of the Vikes offense.  AP is even increasing his receiving totals, with 8 catches for 55 yards so far.  LeSean McCoy is off to an outstanding start to the 2010 campaign, and is looking like Westbrook 2.0.  He had solid production in Wk-1, with 5 catches for 47, and 35 RuYD and a TD, good for 16.7.  But in Wk-2, the Real McCoy showed up in full berserker regalia, as he posted a career high with 120 RuYD and 3 TD, en route to an eye-opening 32.8.  Sims-Walker was out for Wk-1, but came back strong in Wk-2 with 10 catches, 103 ReYD, and a TD; he’s proving to be a legit #1WR, for both the Jags and FF owners.  Sims-Walker could be huge for Miesse, especially if Steve Smith (NYG) continues to be a dump-off afterthought in the Giants offense (9 catches thus far, but for only 78 yards and no TDs.)  We killed the WR depth in the Draft Grades, but that is obviously not the case right now, as Jacoby Jones had a TD, 6 catches, and 14+ in Wk-2 from the bench.  Also, Miesse made two very nice FA pickups to shore up his WR depth – Louis Murphy and Nate Washington each scored TDs this week (Nasty Nate’s 2nd in as many games.)  They also have Housh, but he’s done nada thus far.  The backup RBs, Cadillac and Ricky Williams, haven’t done shit either, but, barring injury, won’t be seeing starts anyway.  The Wiggles seem to have a rock solid DST in Green Bay – Clay Matthews and his 6 sacks are better than many team totals.  If Miesse can solve his TE issues – which he may have done by grabbing Mercedes Lewis – the Wiggles could field one of the more dangerous lineups week to week.

4.) NOCTURNAL EMISSIONS (2-0; 185.3; cbs-4)
The Jizms have not set the PFL on fire by any means, with a solid, if not imposing, 92.6 scoring avg, but they did break 100 in their Wk-2 victory, after being fortunate to win in Wk-1 with a pedestrian 82.6, over Prah and his paltry 57.5.  Besides Mendenhall’s walk-off 50-yard TD in OT, this running game hasn’t got in gear.  Turner was en route to a big Wk-2 with 75-yards on only 9 carries in the 1st half, but he tweaked a hammy, and Jason Snelling took over and went off for 39 points on nearly 200 all purpose yards and 3TDs.  Fortunately for JC, he wisely chose Snelling over Norwood to handcuff Turner.  Schuab only had 8 points in Wk-1, which was a big factor in the Emissions only scoring 82; but he bounced back in a BIG way in Wk-2, with almost 500 yards passing to go with 3 TDs, as he scored 36 and helped get the Jizms over 100.  Jennings started off right in Wk-1 with a TD and 16.7, but disappeared in Wk-2, as the rest of Green Bay’s receivers got theirs; and with Malcolm Floyd, the opposite was the case, as HE got the big TD bomb from Rivers in Wk-2.  The WRs are pretty shaky here after Jennings, at least until Floyd shows consistent production; the bench WRs have been downright awful: Aromashadu and Evans both scored nothing in Wk-2, despite being active. Santonio Holmes cannot come back from suspension soon enough.  Besides the big game from Snelling in place of Turner, the bench RBs have been equally as bad, with the speedy Felix and Leon each not seeing enough touches to warrant a start.  Finely had a disappointing start to the year, with only 4 catches for 47 yards, but came on strong with 4 for 103 in Wk-2.  The Bengals DST also bounced back in Wk-2, dominating Flacco and the Ravens, after getting shredded by Brady and the Pats in Wk-1.  This team is somewhat fortunate to be 2-0, as they’ve yet to reach their potential.  If the running game can step up and perform like they’re supposed to, and Floyd can become Rivers’ #1 guy, then the Jizms should continue winning, but that is looking far from a sure thing at this point in the season.

5.) TOUGH TITTIES (1-1;195.3; cbs-7)
Swords had a tough opener, scoring only 70+ in losing to Lex and his 101.  These things happen when Brees scores under 15, no 20+ outputs, and a handful of single digits, including the rare stinker from Andre Johnson, who only caught 3 passes for 33 yards.  Dallas Clark was the only real baller in that one, with 11 catches, a TD, and 19.5.  Bradshaw managed to find the endzone, and score a solid 14.  But the pieces started to fall into place for Swords in Wk-2: Brees stepped up with 23, and Andre returned to form with 28, on 12 catches that included the game tying bomb, en route to 158 yards.  And Bradshaw added a nice 89 yards, but no scores.  Bradshaw is clearly the mailman in NY now, with Jacobs acting the fool and running like a bitch, all of which bodes very well for Swords and the Titties’ running game, as the season progresses.  Bradshaw has become VERY important, especially in light of the slow start to Jonathan Stewart’s season and the suspect RB depth (Swords really needs Beanie Wells to get healthy, and step it up.)  Depth a WR is also an issue after Andre, but Swords may have alleviated this issue by trading red-hot Jay Cutler to QB-starved Prah, for Santana Moss, who could post some very nice numbers with D-Mac throwing him the rock: Moss’s 10 catch, 89 yard Wk-2 is a VERY positive sign in this department.  Good trade, that aided both teams, although Prah may end up with the better end of it if Cutler keeps it up.  And speaking of Cutler and the Bears’ O, Swords has both Hester and Knox, each of whom has the potential to produce: the problem is figuring out which one is gonna get the most action.  After being subjected to the whims of Hal5000’s selection method, Swords is looking solid, especially considering he currently is holding the league’s best D, the Steelrs, who suffocated the Titans O, shutting down CJ and taking the ball away 7 times, en route to a huge 27.

6.) PRAHBLO ESCOBAR (1-1; 182.3; cbs-8)
The Escobars had a huge bounce-back effort in Wk-2, with 124+ points, and all with Javid Best and his 45.7 left to rot in the hot sun of Don Prah’s bench.  Prah needed very little of his scoring explosion to beat the woeful WFF, and in fact could have won by starting Best, and Best alone, as his 45+ output surpassed that of Kenyon’s ENTIRE TEAM, but more on HIS weak-ass later.  After facing a dire QB situation with Kolb dealing with a concussion, Prah made a nice trade to acquire Jay Cutler, which paid off nicely, as Cutler posted a nearly flawless 3-TD, 29+ performance.  This trade was made all the more important after the announcement that Vick will be the Eagles’ starting QB for the foreseeable future.  And it is not like Prah even needs Santana Moss, what with a SICK starting WR combo of Roddy White and DeSean Jackson, not to mention rookie Demaryius Thomas and his breakout 19.7 performance (8 for 121, 1TD) from the bench.  With Cutler on fire, and these WRs, this team is looking fierce, and we have hardly touched on the backfield.  Yeah, Best in the truth, after going berserker in his 2nd game as a pro, against a decent enough Philly D. Steven Jackson is the perfect producer back to compliment Best, and should mitigate any off games from the rookie.  And if Darren McFadden continues his strong play this year – he’s avergaing 20 FF points and 120 RuYd per game – this could be a backfield to be reckoned with; and Prah will have one of those “good problems:” which 2 of these 3 studs to start.  Oh, and he’s got Owen Daniels at TE, who has yet to get off; but you know it is coming.  The Escobars are ranked 6th here only because they’re still digging themselves out of the 57-point hole they dug for themselves in Wk-1; but look for this squad to go screaming up the PRs if the aforementioned trends continue.

7.) PIERCE & PIERCE (0-2; 204.3; cbs-5)
Larry is the PFL’s defending champ, and it seems that the Champion’s Curse is again in full-effect.  The last three champs have seemingly faced an unusually hard slate of opponents, and their berserkers.  Of course this makes sense in a weird sort of way, that the Champs get everyone’s A-game.  So Larry lost in Wk-1, in spite of having 2 berserker games from Foster and CJ, with outputs of 42 and 29, respectively.  But without any producers, a couple of berserkers can go for nought, much like what happen to Larry in Wk-1, when the rest of P&P only posted 43.28 to go along with the 71.3 from the two RBs.  Romo was the only producer here, with 17; and Rackers added 10.  Everyone else was in single digits, and Larry lost 126-114.6; tough one.  In Wk-2, there were no berserkers, and still few producers.  Foster added a solid 15+ to the cause, but CJ got shut down, which is understandable since he faced the Steelers’ ridiculous D.  Romo posted another underwhelming, sub-20 performance.  Calvin stepped up some, with a TD and 15.  All this added up to a decent enough 89, but once again, Larry faced the week’s top scoring team, the Wiggles, who posted 128.  Larry should fine: P&P has a great backfield with CJ, foster, and Portis, plus a stud WR in Megatron, but depth issues could bite this team going forward.  The WRs – Massoquai, Crabtree, Edwards, and McCluster, are all spotty at best, and Cassel and Young don’t inspire too much confidence at QB, especially since Romo is not posting big numbers yet.  Still, Romo will get his, as will CJ and Calvin; and if Foster is the truth, this team will be a tough out.  They could use some help at TE to make this happen.

8.) ROCS IN SOCKS (1-1;189.5; cbs-5)
The Roccos have defied the Draft Grades, and have started the season very strong.  Waiting awhile for Matt Ryan might have been a good call, because he’s looked very good thus far, and blew up for 3 TD passes and 25 points in Wk-2.  The Rocs won a low-scoring squeaker over the Hairy Knuckles in Wk-1, 88-84, and lost a tough high-scoring shootout, 124-101, to Swords’ Tough Titties in Wk-2.  Chris won in Wk-1 thanks to his imposing 3-Wide lineup: Smith(Car), Wayne, and 85 all scored TDs, and at least 16, with Ochocinco going off for 28.  Chad fell off big in Wk-2, but Wayne and Smith still delivered with TDs and around 15 points worth of production.  These 3 perrenial Pro-Bowlers must stave off the affects of aging, and injury, for Chris to be succesful this year, as he is getting little to no help from the running game.  Deangelo has yet to get off, which is becoming a big concern, because after him, there is literally no one worth a start: Fred Jax, Chester, Maroney, and Jacobs all have major issues, to say the least, with Fred being the best option, which isn’t saying much.  Celek is another player who needs to produce, and soon.  He’s had less than 5 points in each of the first 2 weeks.  This team is hanging tough, but has some SERIOUS questions that need answering.

9.) THE B’MORE OMARS (1-1; 169.9; cbs-9)
Last season’s PFL runner-up, The Omars started their season off right by defeating Miesse and The Wiggles with a nice 99.2 point effort.  But upon closer inspection, the victory is somewhat tainted by the lack of producers in the lineup: Palmer and Nicks combined for 52.2 of the 99.2 that the Omars posted, leaving V.Davis and the Ravens DST as the only other double digits scorers, barely, with 11.3 and 10, respectively.  Remember, 2 lone berserkers does not a victory make; just ask Larry.  But as win is a win, that is, until you lose, which is what happened to McQ in Wk-2.  The Omars got a few decent outputs against the Dons this past week, but with Carson Palmer falling WAY off from Wk-1 (24.7 to 6.58), and no 3TD games from a WR, Johnny Mac couldn’t make up for another week of pedestrian numbers: Ray Rice led the team with only 13.7.  Speaking of Ray Ray: he’s gotten off to a slow start through 2 games, averaging a slight 10.5 per.  And with the way AP has been running and catching, does McHugh have a little Homer remorse?  Of course it is still early, but Rice needs to deliver bigtime if the Omars are gonna make any noise, and get back to the playoffs, especially since Shon Greene is already looking like a bust, as LdT is taking command of the feature back role for the NYJ.  McHugh has little to work with on the bench vis a vis RBs: McGahee is a handcuff, and Mike Bush is still out, and may be McFadden’s cuff when he gets back, based on how well Run-DMC has been playing.  At least the Omars are looking very strong at recivers: Vernon is a beast, and will post numbers; Nicks has the potential to be a big producer for the Giants; rookie Mike Williams, for Tampa, has been outstanding through 2 games, with a TD; same goes for Maclin, who also has 2 scores; and finally, Brandon Marshall, while yet to breakout, has plenty of big games ahead for him.  We loved the Omars’ draft, but now, not so much; they are still dangerous, but need to shore up their RB depth, and they MUST have consistent good performances from Palmer.

10.) HAIRY KNUCKLES (0-2; 164.7; cbs-11)
It’s been a rather rude FF welcome to the PFL, for our new owner Goldie and his Hairy Knuckles.  Not only are they 0-2, but they lost 1st round draft pick, Ryan Grant, for the entire season.  And to add insult to literal injury, fellow Monroe homie, Lex, snatched up Brandon Jackson, Grant’s backup, with his #1 waiver priority; Goldie was #2.  Ouch!  That’s the bad news.  The good news is that there is actually still a lot to like about this team.  First of all, in Wk-1, HK would have beat Chris and the Rocs (they lost by less than 4) if Grant didn’t leave the game early with his season ending ankle injury.  And in Wk-2, they faced a 100-point team in the tough Cleaveland Steamers (Lex has really got Goldie’s number, doesn’t he?)  With that being said, it’s not like HK is lighting it up, averaging just over 82.  But still, they have some promise.  Goldie made a smooth move by grabbing Vick: This is huge because A.) Vick is playing very well – an impressive 27 starting for HK in Wk2 – and he is now the Eagles starting QB for the foreseeable future, and B.) Favre and Anderson are not getting the job done.  The remaining RBs don’t necessarily scare you, but have some upside.  Moreno could turn into a legit #1RB if only he can get more carries; enough with this Buckhalter shit! says Dave.  LdT (We don’t call him LT, because there is only ONE LT) has been a nice surprise for the Jets; based on his good play, and Greene’s poor play, Tomlinson could be quite a dangerous option, especially with his pass-catching ability.  Harrison has been kind of a bum, and loses carries to Hillis.  But maybe Fred Taylor will get some play, now that Maroney is in Denver, and Kevin Faulk is IRed.  The WR corps and TE are the strength of this team: Shiancoe is clearly Favre’s most dependable target; Boldin and Moss make for a fine 1-2 starting punch, with berserker Moss and producer Boldin complimenting one another perfectly.  And the depth here is decent with Mike Williams(SEA), Breaston, and Gresham.  The Hairy Knuckles have dug themselves a hairy hole, but could start making some noise if Vicks keeps playing out of his mind, and Knowshon Moreno takes his game to the next level.

11.) LOBSOSAURUS REX (1-1; 159.6; cbs-10)
Foster and LRex have really struggled to score so far this season, apart from Peyton Manning.  Manning virtually won the game for LRex singlehandedly in Wk-1, with a huge 400+ yards, 3 TD, 35+ game.  The rest of the squad was pretty miserable, with all single digits besides Gates and his 16 and Addai and his 10.  But fortunately, Kenyon’s WFF were equally shitty, and Foster won a close contest, 80.8-74.2.  It was the same story for LRex in the following week versus the Emissions: again, Manning and Gates produced, with 28 & 20 points, respectively, but that was about it.  Addai added 12.3, to make him only the 3rd LRex player in double-digits.  But Addai lost some carries and a TD to Donald Brown, which should seriously concern Foster; with Ryan Matthews out for at least a week or two, Addai becomes vital to this teams success.  And when he was healthy, Matthews wasn’t doing a whole lot anyway.  The RB depth is pretty thin: Barber just doesn’t get enough touches; Thomas Jones is looking pretty good, but he too is in a BFBC (BackFieldByCommittee.)  At this point, it is looking like Foster is probably gonna have to go 3-Wide on occaison due to his RB issues.  But does he have the WR corps?  The answer is maybe.  The problem is, that LRex doesn’t even have a true #1, just a bunch of 2s and 3s with upside.  Bowe is garbage; Mason is solid, but can’t be counted upon; Ward is probably the best option now; and Mannigham has nice upside, but again, is in an offense that spreads it around, so he can’t be depended upon.  The only thing that Foster has going for him, besides Peyton, is at the TE position; where he has two proven producers in Gates and Cooley.  Do you smell that?  Yes, there is definitely a doodie odor wafting from this team, but we’re smelling a trade for Cooley.

12.) WAKKA FLACCO FLAME (0-2; 117.8; cbs-12)
Well, what can we say about this team, other than, “It puts the lotion on Its skin!”  Because Kenyon and the Wakka Flacco Flame are deep down in Buffalo Bill’s basement hole, aka #12 in the PRs.  OK, so the Wk-1 loss to LRex wasn’t terribly horrid: Kenyon got a nice 16+ game from Jamaal Charles, who rushed for over 90 with a TD; MoJo also had a solid rushing total, with 98, but no scores; and Larry Fitz scored.  But Flacco, as expected, struggled to score points against the strong Jets D.  And unfortunately, Tony Gonzalez and Colston didn’t step up, with a combined 13.2.  So Kenyon lost a close, low scoring affair, to Foster and LRex, 80.82-74.42.  And now onto Kenyon’s nightmare in Wk-2, where the wheels fell right the fuck off this ride.  As we mentioned earlier, the WFF were outscored by Javid Best, from Prahblo’s bench, 45.7-43.4.  The rest of the Escobars went on to score 124+ in this blowout.  Anatomy of a FF Abortion: The DST scores as many TDs as the rest of your lineup; which  was Flacco’s lone TD pass, that helped mitigate the damage from his 4 picks; oh, and said DST only managed 1 point, even after getting a Dez Bryant punt return TD; MoJo catches ONE pass, has 48 total yards, and a LOST FUMBLE; Tony G has only 2 catches for 19 yards; your best player, with the lone double digit output, Larry Fitz, avergaed less than 12 yards per catch.  Of course it is still early, and Kenyon and the WFF still have the stable to make some FF noise.  But that’s all we have to say about this team, because, quite frankly, we’re disgusted right now.

xoxo,
the Media

TOM PETTY and THE HEARTBREAKERS …I Should Have Known It..

After all these years, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers still rock like it’s nobody’s business.

As promised, here’s where my head is at, as far as Sports goes, in this, the Summer of our Lord, 2010.  Sorry this post is starting off with some old shit; just haven’t gotten around to tightening up and publishing my notes till now.  I promise that each topic will get subsequently more, well, topical, as we move along.

More on LeBron’s Weak Shit

Here are a couple of my favorite LeBron-to-Miami reactions:

The G.O.A.T also thinks that LeBron’s shit is weak.  “I am Michael Jordan.  And you, Sir, are no Michael Jordan.  I’m Michael Jordan, and I approved this message.”

Here is, by far, the best take on LeBron, from the great Drew Magary, as per usual: http://deadspin.com/5581889/lebron-james-is-a-cocksucker.  As you can see, I left the enitre url intact, rather than couch the link in text, because no one writes a headline like Drew Magary.

And in the spirit of fairness, here is the counterpoint to Magary’s piece, also from the great sports blog Deadspin.com: http://deadspin.com/5583152/counterpoint-lebron-james-is-not-a-cocksucker.

Oh, and Jay-Z is apparently not pleased. Now you’ve gone and pissed off Hova, Lebron: not good.

Dan Gilbert

You can’t blame this cat for going fucking ballistic over the way LeBron left the Cleveland Cavaliers.  First of all, as owner of the Cavs, Gilbert had to watch his franchise lose, like, at least $100 million in value during a televised dog-and-pony-show hosted by that douchebag Jim Grey.  And secondly, Gilbert watched arguably the world’s most exciting basketball player “take his talents to South Beach” along with Gilbert’s best chance to bring the first championship to Cleveland since 1964.  So I get it: getting dumped by the hottest girl in school really, really, sucks. especially when she leaves you for someone way sexier and shallower.

But Gilbert has gone way off the deep end here, and his actions are analogous to spreading nasty rumors about, calling and hanging up on, and driving by the house of, said hot chick.  That ridiculous diatribe that Gilbert “penned” on the Cavs website should have been subjected to the whole put-the-angry-letter-in-the-desk-drawer rule, because both he and it could have used a little cooling off time.  And perhaps the choice of going with the “Comic Sans” type-font wasn’t the best call in hindsight, as the hand-written style of the font closely resembles the penmanship of the bat-shit crazy poo-painting inmates locked up in solitary (I love me some MSNBC’s “Lockup.”)  The choice of the Comic Sans font was so curious to people, that #comicsans became a trending topic on Twitter.

OK, now lemme just bottom-line this business, as this story is well past it’s expiration date:  Gilbert’s anger and impulsiveness, while understandable and somewhat admirable, is also immature and short-sighted.  How many big-time free-agents are gonna choose to play for Gilbert and his Cavs, now that he has blasted and aired some dirty laundry of the one of the league’s most popular players.  Players talk, Dan.  If I’m a Cavs fan, I’m pretty pissed about this, as Gilbert spent up a lot of the good-will and rooting that is coming the Cavs way in the wake of their very public dumping.  If you own a pro sports franchise, you just have to be able to take the high road in these type of situations, especially when dealing with extremely large children.  Besides, most owners should remain invisible anyway: unless you own a transcendent sports franchise, that is worth billions, thanks in large part to your efforts, no one really takes you seriously or gives a fuck about what you say anyway.

George “The Boss” Steinbrenner

And while we’re on the subject of iconic team owners and, shall we say, less than dignified behavior, I gotta say a few things about The Boss.  First, let’s get all the bad shit out of the way – and mind you, I’m a Yankees fan.  Now I am to young to be cognizant of the days when George was kind of out of control, and was firing Billy Martin during the press conference announcing the man’s hiring.  This kind of stuff, and the rest of Steinbrenner’s antics back then, fall into the aforementioned category of STFU.  George didn’t really earn the right to be such an over-bearing presence at that time, even after bringing two titles back to the Bronx in the late 70s.  He would have done well to shut his mouth and listen a little more; perhaps those great Yankee teams would have been a dynasty had he done so.  And all those shenanigans just made him look more like the buffoon famously caricatured in Seinfeld.  Over time, George did become a great elder statesman, all while maintaining that great bad-assery he was so known for.

George Steinbrenner’s mercurial and somewhat ruthless personality most definitely was a mixed bag, and probably had a lot to do with both his personal, and the Yankees’ team, success, thus making George like any other complicated individual, only amplified to the extreme.  And I have complicated feelings about the way that The Boss obsessively chased championships at all costs like Ahab, with seemingly little regard for what carnage lie in his wake.  On the one hand, I of course understand that George endeavored to put the best product on the field each year, and I have personally enjoyed the sweet fruits of the Boss’ efforts as we Yankee fans have watched our Bronx Bombers ascend to the premiere professional sports franchise in the world.  But on the other hand, the precedent set by Steinbrenner’s literal win-at-all-costs strategy has hurt the competitive balance of Major League Baseball, and has taken some of the fun out of winning when you have the highest payroll by a mile.  I’m not complaining too much, because I sure do appreciate being a Yankees fan instead of rooting for, say, the Pirate or Royals.  However, it is extremely annoying to deal with the inevitable payroll complaints when discussing Yankee greatness.  This is one of the main reasons why the NFL is by and far the most popular professional sport in America: this time of year every team has hope to make a run at a world championship.  Again, George played within the rules, and made up some of his own when he could, so he deserves the adulation from the Yankees’ faithful, and the ire from the rest of baseball.

As far as the personal side of the Boss goes, the side often hidden from the general public and media: every account since his passing paints a picture of a great man with a huge heart who would give of himself every chance he got.  The most public version of this aspect of Steinbrenner’s character manifested itself in the way George reached out to help troubled players like Darryl Strawberry and Doc Godden, and was always ready to grant a blessed second chance.  So many stories from people who have been on the receiving end of George’s great charity have emerged since his passing, the reason being that Steinbrenner did not his generosity publicized, thus making his philanthropy all the more sincere and meaningful.

Like I said, the Boss was a complicated and great man, who I feel is the embodiment of the so-called Byronic Hero, my favorite kind of hero.  He certainly was an idealized but flawed man, as all the great and interesting ones are.  He died as champion, and has left the New York Yankees as the #1 sports property in all of sports.  So I tip my cap to you George, the Boss; fare thee well on the Other Side.

Stay tuned for more on…

A-Rod’s 600th HR (and why no one gives a flying fuck.)

MLB and the Season of the Pitcher

And some other stuff…




LordhaveMERcy! there has been a lot of action in the world of sports recently, so much that I have welcomed this All-Star break; I needed the breather.  Usually this time of year is one of two death-valleys in sporting news, the other being around the NBA All-Star break in mid-to-late February.  But in this mid-summer of 2010 the sports wire is just crackling with electricity; stories abound: the World Cup, Baseball, LeBron’s decision and the rest of the NBA free-agency, Cavs owner Dan Gilbert, and some high profile passings, all with NFL training-camp looming on the horizon.  So now that the dust has settled somewhat after all these earthquakes, and their subsequent aftershocks, I’d like to provide my commentary on them, starting with the biggest story of all:

LeBron’s decision to leave Cleveland, and “take [his] talents to South Beach”

Everyone knew that wherever LeBron decided to play this Fall, it would send shock-waves throughout the NBA, and the sporting world in general, but no one could have predicted that LeBron’s bomb would be of the nuclear variety, with all the accompanying fallout.

I’ve been a big LeBron fan from the get-go; I’ve marveled at the way this kid has delivered on the astronomical hype that has followed him since his skull completely hardened, all while managing to maintain a relatively good head on his humongous shoulders.  I’m pretty jaded and cynical about athletes and celebrities, so it is a rare thing when I can genuinely respect one’s character as well as their talent: LeBron is in this rarefied air as far as I’m concerned.  But with that being said, LeBron takes a real big hit in my book over how he’s handled this whole situation.

Now I don’t feel that LeBron James owes Cleveland anything really, but the city and it’s fans certainly did not deserve the kick in the teeth they got during the circle-jerk that was the ill-conceived, hour-long ESPN “special” (more on those ESPN jerk-offs later.)  The whole program was weird, unnecessary, and blatantly self-serving for all involved.  And what’s up with holding it at a Boys & Girls Club in Greenwich, CT? arguably the wealthiest fucking town in the WORLD! Matt Taibbi has a great take, as usual, on the whole ESPN debacle here on his new RollingStone.com blog.

While LeBron is taking the most criticism for the poor handling of his announcement, he’s also taking a lot of heat for choosing the Heat.  As much as I want to buck the consensus of the sports opinion echo-chamber, I will have to agree that Lebron’s choice to join Dwayne Wade, and now Chris Bosh, in Miami can be described as weak, at best.  For all the talk about legacy, and the next Jordan, and “King” James, and being “Chosen,” or “I Am A Witness,” the fact is apparently lost on LeBron that in choosing the Miami Heat, attaining the legendary status he at one time seemed destined for will be a lot less likely, regardless of how many championships he wins with the Heat.  The reason I say this is that leading the Cavs or Knicks (full disclosure: I’m Knick fan, albeit a dormant one) to an NBA title is equal to 5 with the Heat.  People will now expect Miami to go on a dynastic run now that they have three of the premiere players in the league, including arguably two of the top 3. Where’s the fun in that?  Sure, in order to win it all, an NBA team usually needs two all-star caliber players, but this should happen way more organically than the contrived way the Miami deal went down. And Miami is Wade’s town anyway; he was here first, drafted the same year the Cavs took LeBron first overall, and is the only one from that class to lead his team and city to a championship.  So Miami will always be Wade’s town.  Ideally LeBron would stay with the city he was drafted by, Cleveland, a title starved, passionate town, who also happen to have the bonus serendipity factor of being 30 miles from LeBron’s home town and people of Akron, Ohio.  We all love a good narrative, and LeBron bringing home the Larry O’Brien trophy to Cleveland would certainly qualify as story-book.

With all that being said, I can totally understand why LeBron would be ready to move on after 7 years in Cleveland, and, again, I don’t begrudge him for doing so.  Can you blame a 25-year old with hundreds of millions of dollars for not wanting to settle down in the Rust Belt?  But if he had leave Cleveland, there were a number of better options from a legacy and narrative perspective.  There could have been another great narrative had LeBron chose to play for the New York Knicks and resuscitated that historic but atrophied franchise.  Think about it: the day LeBron signs with the New York Knicks, he instantly becomes bigger than Jeter, A-Rod, Eli, and Sanchez…combined.  I could even live with LeBron in Chicago, where at least he’d still be the Alpha Dog on roster talented enough to make a deep playoff run.  And perhaps the most delicious scenario of all, from a narrative perspective, would be if LeBron went to the Los Angeles Clippers.  It would be fabulous if LeBron James left Cleveland to fight Kobe in his own back yard for the hearts of L.A. and the title of World’s Best Baller.  Ahhh, dare to dream.

But Miami?  Ugh.  Another reason this move is weak-ass is that Miami is kind of a shitty sports town, and no one will convince me otherwise. In my opinion the amount of true sports energy and fandom in and about a city is inversely proportional to the attractiveness of it’s average citizen. In other words: there is simply too much hot scattered ass in Miami for people to take more than a fleeting interest in it’s sports franchises.  Of course Miami is gonna sell-out every home game and will be the hottest ticket in town for awhile, and will appear to be like the East Coast version of L.A.’s “Showtime”, but they will never have the local and national fan base of the legendary Lakers; hell, the Miami Heat have only been in existence for 22 years.

Again, I can’t completely blame LeBron for wanting to do his thing in a hot party town, with perfect weather, and in a state with no state income tax.  I’d probably make the same decision.  And while we’re on the subject of taxes, this issue should always be factored in when discussing the migration of professional athletes.  Florida and Texas, and all their myriad pro-sports franchises, have become a very attractive destination for free agents on the verge of signing huge contracts.  In the case of LeBron, he would pay around $12million in state taxes in New York, and about $6million in Ohio, but zero in Florida.  And that’s just counting his NBA salary income.

But again, and in summation, from strictly a psorts-narrative angle, Lebron’s move to Miami is pretty lame because he chose not to step up to the plate, be The Man or The Alpha, and take on the heavy lifting that is leading a passionate, hungry fan-base to a championship.  Because of all of this he is now just a great basketball player to me, and not the transcendent  “Chosen One” I hoped he could be.

Stay Tuned…

…for my take on the aforementioned other sports stories.  This post just became too long for me to delve into that other stuff.  But here’s a preview:

  • Cavs Owner Dan Gilbert: While I understand his beef over how LeBron handled things, I gotta kill this cat over how childish and short-sighted his comic-sans-fonted tirade was.
  • ESPN’s Coverage and Radio bits: “The Worldwide Leader’s” sycophantic drooling over LeBron’s announcement was very annoying.  And while their radio programs and hosts are actually very good, they need to leave the comedy bits to the professionals.
  • The passing of “The Boss.”:  Say what you will about Yankees Owner George Steinbrenner, you can’t deny he was a very complex character, and one of the most consequential owners in the history of professional sports.
  • A Quick World Cup postmortem: Something about this tournament really has stuck with me, and I may find myself starting to follow soccer more.
  • The State of MLB: The ‘Year of Pitcher’ is turning out to be way more exciting than the typical collective bludgeoning that pitchers have been subjected to over the past few decades.
  • NFL Training Camp:  In about two weeks NFL teams start reporting to college campuses and training facilities around the country, and I’ve already got a chubby.

The following 15-minute video is pretty much all you need to know regarding what is happening on the front-lines of the BP Oil Disaster.  Kindra Arnes, a Venice, LA, native, delivers a mind-blowing account of her dealings with BP, and the effects the oil-giant’s spill has had on her community.  I know it’s a bit long, but I urge you to watch this video; you won’t find a more compelling human voice of this tragedy.

A great big thanks goes out to the Cajun Boy, for posting this.  My heart goes out to you, your people, and the rest of the Gulf Coast.