Archive for March, 2010|Monthly archive page

boo hoo

hoops revisited
remember my bracket? yeah, you remember that shit. you loved it. well, I got most of it wrong, as did we all, but I got two in the Final Four: West Virginia and Butler. Butler is my saving grace. no one picked Butler. because they thought too hard about it. so if West Virginia wins out, like I have them doing, I’ll win the sports desk pool. which will offset some of the taxes I’ll probably owe. yes. it is springtime in America.

local news
I wrote a headline that was pretty amusing the other day. it pissed off a few of the old crackers that frequent my newspaper’s website, who thought it was in bad taste, but it has apparently gotten plenty of hits. which means to me: I was correct in writing it. anyway, I am a copy editor. I work a shitty, thankless job that’s leading me nowhere. so when I write a good headline, I’d like it pointed out.

Police: Man exposed himself at Dick’s

sometimes, these things just write themselves.

real news

edit: see? LOOK.

somebody done committed a pair of suicide bombings in Moscow two days ago now, and Vladimir Putin is pissed. the last time he got pissed, the second Chechen war happened. and then he put this guy in charge. and that guy is fucking crazy.
the Russian government is saying this is the work of Islamic militants in the volatile north Caucasus. President Medvedyev is saying while there must be a swift and strong military response against those laboring to create a regional caliphate, the federal authorities should probably try to improve living conditions in an area swamped with rampant government corruption and an ongoing litany of human rights abuses. but then, Medvedev’s metaphorical old man, Putin, doesn’t seem to buy any of that hippified “improving living conditions” bullshit.
it’s Russia, after all. big, cold and tragic. I’m sure it won’t end well.

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Duke won

this one’s for Anna.
.
the White House is increasing the civility and bipartisanship in Washington by taking advantage of the recess appointment to fill a bunch of vacant administration spots while the Senate is on vacation. the Senate GOP, of course, is not happy, especially over the pick for the National Labor Relations Board. a Craig Becker, counsel to the AFL-CIO and the SEIU. a union lawyer.
quoth desert raisin, Sen. John McCain (R-Facing Primary Loss):
 
“The U.S. Senate rejected this highly controversial and partisan nominee, once again the administration showed that it had little respect for the time-honored constitutional roles and procedures of Congress. This is clear payback by the administration to organized labor.”
.
a canned statement that is overflowing with bullshit. spare me the gears “time honored tradition” bullshit about a fucking labor board pick. there are three open spots on a five-member board. and it’s been like that for over a goddamn year! you know what the last president did? he used a recess appointment to install his U.S. ambassador to the United Nations. the ambassador to the United goddamn Nations. compared to a labor board appointee.
no. the reason McCain doesn’t like Becker is because business groups like the Chamber of Commerce have their hands up his angry old ass.

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Tom Perriello’s brother’s gas grill line was cut, and all you got was greater access to health care and this lousy t-shirt

Health care reform has descended upon America, like a blanket tucked in underneath the nation’s chin by a gauzy-white angel to some; and a oozing, heavy cloud of pestilence and disease to others. whether or not there are more of the latter is debatable, but they are certainly louder.

consider my district. I live in Virginia’s fifth, which, if you look at it on a map, has a  ridiculous shape thanks to the time-honored tradition of gerrymandering. drawn to allow large chunks of rural conservative voters dillute the college town up north and its surrounding liberal ilk.
it was the most closely-contested house seat in the nation last election cycle, and it went oh-so barely for Tom Perriello, who I have lionized around here in an offhand way for a few months now.
I like him. he seems pretty pragmatic, and weighs his votes pretty carefully. he’s aware of how conservative his district usually is (he represents Lynchburg, after all), so he bucks his party from time to time and is apparently pretty easy to talk to. he was an active proponent of health care town hall meetings, and held a cople of dozen of them around here last summer, where the invective and spittle flew unbridled. socialism. respectin’ the Constitution. etcetera. 
but if you listen to a certain narrative, all that accessibility dries up when you’re a tea-party patriot, or whatever it is those loons call themselves nowadays

more health care

this is a great column. I’ll just post it below, because you jackasses don’t click on the links — oh I know — and I want you to read it.

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a good old-fashioned rant

who is sick and tired of hearing about health care reform?

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hoops hoopshoops hoops hoopsh

twelve hours later:

I got “Die Hard” on the tube. this movie is stupid with a capital Dumb, but it sure is fun to watch. a good 80’s action movie. the glory days of xenophobic, sappy, gratuitous-violence machines. when Bruce Willis had hair. but anyway, fuck all that. let’s talk about hoops.

first, my final four has changed since noon. ever so slightly. they will be in the bolds below.

tha west

okay, to begin, let’s just go ahead and pencil in the number ones into the second round, and then into the sweet sixteen without much thought. this line of thinking works very well with Syracuse, which lost its last two games but nevertheless will not fuck up and bow out early. it doesn’t matter if their center is gimpy; they’re still loaded for at least two wins without so much as blinking. I got them getting over Butler and into the Elite Eight, though Butler is basically the same team that lost in the first round last year, only older (read: less dumb), so they could pull off that upset.
but Xavier will get over Pittsburgh in the second round to meet Kansas State who will be fresh off of topping BYU, and then will advance again. because Jordan Crawford is my man. because he actually played at Indiana for one glorious year and he jammed on Lebron. 
this is the team that will win the bracket. because that video is awesome.

tha midwest

this one’s the no-brainer, though there’s a lot of talent in it.
I think Maryland will beat Michigan State in the second round. and then get rolled by Kansas, but Greivis Vasquez will still do something like shit-talk in Spanish despite being in a twenty-point hole. Georgetown, a really good team, will meet Ohio State, a really average team entirely supported by star Evan Turner. but he could go off and play wonderfully through the tournament and bring the rest of that goddamn abomination of a university with him. that’s entirely possible, he was just rollin’ in the Big Ten tourney. but I don’t think that’ll happen. because, I don’t know. I think Georgetown is better, and pissed at losing to a bunch of slack-jawed yokels like WVU on Saturday night in Madison Square Garden, and will ride that deep into the bracket.
but not deep enough to beat giant white guy Cole Aldridge, Sherron Collins and Xavier Henry. their big three beats out Georgetown’s big three. so Kansas over Georgetown and into the Final Four.  

tha east

I think the Wake Forest and Texas matchup would be one most uninteresting game to watch from the stands in the first round, and it’s a shame that I have to pick a winner out of it. I wish I could give better describe my boredom with this game, but I’m at a loss. Texas was ranked No. 1 this season, and won it’s first gajillion games before going 7-9 down the stretch in the Big 12. weak. they aren’t gonna figure it out in the tourney. which is fine with me. fuck Rick Barnes, and fuck Texas. this isn’t his fault, I’ll give, but if you’re school is a national contender every year in college football, I usually despise your hoops program as a rule. leave basketball to the rest of us, you greedy fucks. this applies perfectly to my feelings on Ohio State … but strangely, not to Florida. everything’s got wrinkles, I guess.
anyways, here’s where the levee breaks on the number ones: Kentucky won’t get past the Sweet Sixten. I don’t know about your dumb ass, but I saw a team on Sunday that needed overtime to beat Mississippi State. I don’t care that John Wall is faster than everyone on the court and can draw fouls at will. that cheeseball used-car salesman Calipari starts three freshmen. and that means they go for stretches in which they play stupid and rely on talent.
well, I don’t think god rewards dumb. and I believe in god. so I got them losing to Temple, which is probably completely wrong. and truthfully, I hate Kentucky, because I went to Indiana, and what’s filling out a bracket for if not indulging your own prejudices and misinformed opinion?
so I’m picking Temple, because I think Kentucky is due to look bad. fuck that team.
in the other leg of this bracket, West Virginia will beat the New Mexico Lobos (best mascot in the field) and then get past Fran Dunphy (whom my dad knows, I think) and the Owls, and into the Final Four. because, you gotta indulge sentimentality too sometimes. to hell with it. I’m for Huggins, and I’m with West By God.

tha south

the south is lame. Duke is a number one? they beat Virginia, Miami, and Georgia Tech to win the ACC tourney. I live in an ACC town, and I work at the local paper. trust me, Virginia sucks, and they sucked even before their leading scorer had to leave the goddamn team because he skipped all of his art classes. Miami was at the bottom of the league. and Georgia Tech is … anyway, beating those three teams won Duke the ACC this year, and that shit is weak.
so after getting inexplicable dap from the selection committe, the Blue Devils, who always manage to have a bunch of waspy, disciplinarian types on the team, will get past Louisville in a close one, and lose to Texas A&M. I’ve got nothing to support this; I know fuckall about Texas A&M. but I read somewhere today that Duke hasen’t been past the sweet sixteen in, like, six years. and that’s a pretty surprising little trivia nugget. so why break with that now?
elsewheres in the south, Old Dominion will beat Notre Dame before losing to Baylor, which is coached by a pudgy guy from Valparaiso named Scott Drew. Purdue will beat Siena, because regardless of how they’ve looked they’re still worth at least one win in the tournament. Purdue losing as a number four is the trendy high-seed upset, but it won’t happen. don’t do it, America.
and then, Baylor will beat Richmond before meeting A&M in the Battle of Texas sometime next week in Houston. and that will make four.

so I got: Baylor, West Virginia, Kansas and Xavier.
come on, that’s feasible. that’s totally feasible. you could see that, not even stretching.
I know it’s not. but eh, at least I know how I got there. I tried to get into a bracket at work, but the only one going around is being administered through Facebook. so I’d have to sign up for Facebook to participate, and the burning dumb flame of desire to get into a pool and recklessly gamble with ten dollars that I don’t have is a strong flame indeed, but I don’t know if it’s worth giving up this lovely self-imposed exile from social networking sites. I am in the wilderness. so I think I’ll just print one out and fill it in by pen instead. 

and, just to make note: did you see that Gorillaz has put out a new album? I have the first two albums.
think about that. I own two British electropop albums fronted by a bunch of cartoon characters with an elaborate backstory. and I’m excited to listen to the next one. either that is telling, or the fact that I find this embarassing is. I will leave that up for you to consider.

 ——–  ——–  ——–  ——–  ——–
 ——–  ——–  ——–  ——–  ——–

at noon the day before:

Final Four picks.

Kansas, West by God Virginia, the fightin’ Scott Drews of Baylor, and Butler. I will expand upon this at great length and at interest to no one in the near future.

sci-fi never left

dude, Tron’ is coming back. in IMAX with the 3-D! so GO MAKE YOUR COSTUME.

Corey Haim is dead. I didn’t even bother to read the story. did you know that most wire services in major news publications prewrite obituaries? it’s true. let’s run down the list on this guy: child actor, drug abuse, big in the 80s, hung out with Corey Feldman? I wonder how long his has been on the shelf.

anyway. pour a sip on the concrete.

I’m trying real hard to be the shepherd

I really like the last scene in “Pulp Fiction,” when Sam Jackson explains to Tim Roth why he’s not going to kill him. that clip that you just skipped clicking on, it doesn’t include the scene where Jules explains his “moment of clarity” to Vincent about his profession and how he wants to live his life, but it leads into these ten minutes of Mexican standoff and pontificating and ends with a great line, and one to which I can’t exactly relate but I sometimes feel I’m trying real hard to.
is that a pun? or a just a grammatically incorrect sentence?

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things I have done with andrew

I fucked my back up lifting weights. how lame is that? lift with your knees, dipshit, you’ve been through this before!
anyway, it makes sitting for more than five minutes really uncomfortable, which is a problem when you have a desk jockey job like mine. so I just took a painkiller five minutes ago, and I got about five minutes before it kicks in full force and knocks my ass out cold. I took one today before work, which was necessary but turned me into a numbed zombie. I took a couple of naps on the couch in the photography room. and like earlier, I will sleep one of those heavy, dreamless sleeps tonight. the kind where your mouth lies open and you drool.

so. once, during college, while I was home in Valparaiso for a week or so during summer break, Andrew and I went to Mount Baldy … to fuck around. because that’s what you do at Mount Baldy, you fuck around. you bring a frisbee and wear flip-flops that you’re bound to lose, and you climb to the top of that giant-ass sand dune in Laporte County, and at the top you can see the Chicago skyline to your left, that looks like a hazy miniature set, and to the right is the impending water cooling tower at the power plant in Michigan City, and in front of you is Lake Michigan. and a couple hundred miles over this water due north is the upper peninsula of Michigan. it’s a really big lake, Lake Michigan is. some might even call it Great.
so Andrew and I climbed to the top of this thing, and then purposefully leapt back down its steep side in giant, gravity-powered bounds. if you trip, it is fine; there is nothing but sand to break your fall.
and then we threw a frisbee around; intentionally throwing it over the precipice every once in a while to send the other scrambling.
and then we went swimming, in the questionable Lake Michigan water, with our clothes on. because it was summer, and clothes will always dry.
it was a Sunday evening, probably late July or early August, and it was growing late. Andrew wanted to stay, but I wanted to leave, because I wanted to drive back down to school that night because I was chasing some dumb ass that summer — which, by association and logic, makes me dumb as well — and I wanted to get back to that game. 
“you can always go back tomorrow. just go back tomorrow,” was Andrew’s argument, I believe, and I kind of listened to it, but eventually I kept acting like an asshole and he acquiesced, and we left. and I went back down to Bloomington that evening, and got in around 11 pm.
I don’t even remember what happend that evening after I returned, which means it wasn’t memorable. but I do remember the day on Mount Baldy, and I have always remembered it. because I know now that I should have stayed. because you’re only young and free of responsibility on top of Mount Baldy in the cool summer dusk once or twice, and you got to hold on to those moments. 
you were right, Andrew. it’s the little things, man.