Blocking the Block

You Know What I Hate?

I hate when I stare at a computer screen all day, expecting to be able to write something cool, because all weekend I’ve been thinking about cool things to write…..and then when I sit down at the computer, everything I write sucks.

Seriously. Everything. I. Write. Sucks.

So, in order to atleast post something, since I will not be very available for the next month or so, seeing as I’m gonna be burned out from work during our busiest time, here are some videos and whatnot.

Dammit, dammit, dammit……of all the days to get writer’s bloc, why today?

Here’s Kurt Vonnegut discussing Writer’s Bloc: If you haven’t read a Vonnegut book yet, you need to read one before you die. Seriously…..you’ll thank me when you die.

Here’s the Knights from Monty Python’s Holy Grail fighting a rabbit. Why post this? Because its funny, dude; because its funny.

Okay….I think I’m starting to block the Bloc. Deep breath.

Here we go:

Why I Don’t Write When I’m around My Friends:

There are few reasons why I don’t write when I hang out with friends; namely, its anti-social.

But another reason is sabotage. Yes, if you are writing in a blog while hanging out with friends, and get up to go the bathroom, and forget that it is up, bad things can happen. This happened recently while watching football. I was trying to write a post on which movie is more unintentionally gay: Karate Kid II or Roadhouse. I don’t think I’m going to finish this; I’ve already lost interest. But my buddy Mark, who I usually watch football with on Sundays, had his own input that he wanted to add to the matter. Here’s how it reads:

“But it got me thinking: I’m starting to question my sexuality. From the first day i saw KKII my outlook on men and women have changed. When watching Roadhouse i think patrick swayze: Good looking guy nice ass. Cause you know we all enjoyed that shot of his buns when he wakes up in the morning to that lady greeting him with a cup of coffee. But any ways im getting ahead of myself. I dont find patrick swayze attractive. But the KKII kid is hot. Comon whats hotter than a guy standing on a BIG tree log on one foot, then thrusting the other foot vigoursouly hard. OOOOOHHHHH HARD is a great word but thats for another blog…..But i digresss. I forgot my point but listen everyone needs to love the penis and get back at me. My name is greg. and if you want a good time with another man…(Ladies I’m gay so dont call) Hit me up fellas. Love ya bunches. G-Tard.”

There’s really nothing else to say here. Blog sabotage is an ugly, ugly thing. For any ladies reading this: No, KKII did not change my sexuality; I am not gay. Also, I usually don’t go by G-Tard; I am definitely not going to start signing out like this.

I really just wanted to show this to emphasize a point: If you are a blogger, be careful about Blog Sabotage. Even your best friends might strike.

He’s lucky I didn’t kick his freakin ass, like Commando would have.

(I think my favorite part of Commando are the steel drums….really sets the mood for murder and destruction. Although every part of this movie is great…..and don’t ever forget it.)

Note: I made my football picks, I just don’t feel like copying and pasting them right now. Deal with it.

Okay…..before I go.

My favorite movie directors in the world are Joel and Ethan Coen. Their new film, No Country for Old Men, has just been released. It is based on the 2005 novel written by Cormac McCarthy.

I’ve seen it twice. The first time I saw, I thought it was great, but felt that I missed a few things. I returned a week later to watch it again.

Seeing it twice was essential: everything came full circle. And after my second viewing, I will say the following: This may be their best film yet, as strange as it is to even say that (every film they make is phenomenal [biased alert! biased alert!]). It is an absolute masterpiece, one way or the other. The entire film is exciting and awesome (not at all slow or boring), but the last twenty minutes of the film may be the most phenemenal twenty minutes of a film I’ve ever seen. The final three scenes are beyond pivotal: they’re magnificent.

This is where it was important to watch it twice: the first time viewing it, these scenes are tough to grasp. There is a lot of stuff going on, and its easy to miss what is being said.

But the second time I watched, I paid attention to every single word spoken in the final three scenes. And then, as the movie ended, I sat in the movie theatre, mumbling, “Holy shit,” over and over. Its that kind of ending; an absolute Grand Slam. The Coen Brothers always get you thinking; their movies are Candy for the Brain. But this movie felt even different than most: I was thinking, but I wasn’t sure what I was thinking about. I can’t emphasize enough how incredible this movie is.

Anyway, I’ll go now.

Until Next Time,

Greg

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The Hooded Sweatshirt Dilemna

Happy Thanksgiving All,

I am here to write a story that will eventually lead to a second story, but first:

Some Love for the Paperboys:

For anyone who has ever delivered papers for a job (yours truly), Thanksgiving stands out for one reason: its the largest daily newspaper of the year (dailys exlcude Sundays). You can’t rubberband Thanksgiving papers, or carry them in your typical daily sack: the cart designated for Sundays had to be used. Ofcourse, being a holiday and all, an extra hour was allowed to deliver them by (by 8am), but still: those are damn big papers.

So if you happen to see your paper boy in the next couple of days…..give him or her some lovin (tips).

Moving on:

A Story That Leads to a Second Story (That I Don’t Get to Finish Here, Atleast For Now):

The Hooded Sweatshirt Dilemna:

Last Thursday, I had an eye appointment; my eyes were getting dilated, and I would not be able to attend work on Friday.

I had big plans for Friday; there were a couple things on my mind:

1) My brakes had been squeaking for awhile; I’m all about getting brakes fixed in cars. I feel brakes are important.

2) I recently bought a hooded sweatshirt online: here’s the background story: Until this fall, I had two identical light gray sweatshirts, both from Lands End. I loved them. One was a little too big, but comfortable. The other one fit better, but had wierd stains on it (to this day, I don’t know what the stains are, although I think they may be coffee). Anyway, to make a long story short, I wore my coffee stained sweatshirts to my softball games (my softball team finished third and was written up in the Somerville Journal, I might add. Represent Lexington Park). And one time, I wore my good one by accident. And well, I forgot the f**king thing. And then I was stuck with only the coffee stained guy.

Coffee Stains was (and still is) wicked comfortable….but he’s got coffee stains. So to wear him in public is, well, a little embarrassing.

That being said, a comfortable, reliable hoodie is essential in anyone’s wardrobe. I needed to get Coffee Stains a cleaner brother to hang out with.

Since my Lands End sweatshirts had treated me so well, I went to LandsEnd.com. Only to find that all light gray sweatshirts were unavailable until February (not cool). And all dark gray ones not available until December (not cool). Leaving me with too choices: Blue (cobalt) or red.

There was no way I was going to rock a red sweatshirt. Absolutely no way. Which left me with the blue guy. Staring at the computer screen, I talked myself into it:

“C’mon, Greg,” I whispered. “Just enter your credit card numbers and proceed to checkout. You know you want to. Blue looks good on you, especially cobalt.”

And so it was. I entered my credit card numbers. I proceeded to check out. I clicked ‘Submit.’

A week or so later, a package from Lands End arrived at my work. I opened it up, excited to meet my new buddy…..but upon opening the box, our first meeting, was, well, a little awkward.

He was…..a little brighter than I expected. If my gray sweatshirt had been a dude, he would have said, “Hey Greg, good to meet you. We’re going to have good times, me and you.” If this blue sweatshirt had been a dude, he would have said something along the lines of, “Hey there, friend! Do you like magic tricks….cause I know magic!! Trust me…..chicks dig magic!! Ohh look…..got your nose!!” In other words…..I immediately knew I did not want to hang out with Blue Sweatshirt, whereas me and Gray Sweatshirt would have been boys.

But I gave him a chance…..wore him out a couple times. It was the equivalent of meeting up with my friends and a having a guy who enjoys magic tricks in tow, constantly saying things like, “You have a pack of cards….I’ll show you a trick!” and “Got your nose!!”. In other words…I was a little embarrassed.

It wasn’t too bad…..I got a few, “Hey, nice Blue Sweatshirt!” comments (sarcasm emphasized), but I dealt with it. No biggie.

But the icing on the cake was when I went to a concert with a couple of co-workers later in the week. One of my co-workers, who is female, asked me, “Hey Greg……where’s your blue sweatshirt?”

Now…..this was sort of an odd question. People don’t usually ask where one of my clothing pieces is.

“I didn’t wear it tonight,” I said. “Why?”

She started laughing. “Ohh, no reason.”

“No wait,” I said. “You said you liked it when I asked you at work. What’s the deal? Does it look stupid?”

“No, Greg,” she said, still laughing. “Its just, well, its blue.” She paused. “I mean, girls aren’t gonna notice something like that. You can still get girls. You’re not gonna get GQ Man of Year, or anything, but its not a big deal. Its just a hoodie.”

While the above paragraph may look somewhat straightforward, its actually very complex. Lets analyze it:

After being asked “Does it look stupid?”, my co-worker answered.

“No, Greg, its just, well, its blue.” This sentence is very dececptive. Without the “its just blue part,” its fine, but in its entirety, it can be translated to mean, “Yes, Greg, it looks very stupid…..its blue.”

Sentences Two and Three: “I mean, girls aren’t gonna notice something like that. You can still get girls.” These are not good sentences to hear. The fact that she is bringing up girls is bad in general. This is how I loosely translated this sentence: “Greg, you’re a good guy, and if you meet girls, they’ll probably notice this. But girls notice when things look bad, and if you walk into a bar with a bright blue sweatshirt, they are going to laugh at you and not take you seriously. Ofcourse, your sweatshirt is only a sweatshirt, but the bottom line is this: First impressions mean something, and a bright blue sweatshirt does not make a good first impression.”

Setence four: “You’re not gonna get GQ Man of Year or anything, but its not a big deal.”

A very bad thing to hear. To repeat: You’re not going to get GQ Man of the Year or anything…..] Thats something you never want to hear. You want to hear, “Damn, Greg, you look sharp!” You don’t want to hear the GQ sentence, for the following reason: I already am aware that I am not going to win GQ of the Year, seeing as I am not a model, and I no longer subscribe to the magazine (too many ads, not enough substance). So this is information that I am already well aware of: I am not going to win GQ Man of the Year. Which means that the sentence is not actually literal; it is metaphorical.

Seeing as I am not a model, the entire GQ Man of the Year metaphor can be thrown out the window. This can be replaced with “Most handsome guy at a party,” “Best dressed guy at bar,” “Sharp looking guy on the street”, whatever. I’m not saying I ever accomplish these things……but I do strive to look good. Which means that if I want to look good, or make an impression on somebody, the sweatshirt cannot be worn, because I will not accomplish my goal.

And finally, the last sentence, and perhaps the most important sentence: “Its just a hoodie.”

Yes, this is a very important sentence, for the following reason: It shows that the concept of a hoodie, as I (and many other folks see it), is totally misunderstood here.

You may remember from above: I talked about my hoodies as if they were people. Because that’s how a hoodie should be. It keeps you warm in the cold. If its raining, it keeps your head dry. It hangs out with all your buddies. It becomes a part of you.

By saying, “Its just a hoodie,” my co-worker was implying that I would not be wearing it to anything important. It is true that I would not wear a hoodie to a formal event; but a hoodie should be worn to something important with no second thought. A quality hoodie should be worn out with friends; a quality hoodie can be worn in any situation. They should be versatile.

By stating its just a hoodie, its implied that no one will see me where this hoodie, since I will only wear it while doing yardwork on Saturday afternoon, ect, ect…..And that, my friends, is not what hoodies are all about.

Hoodies should be seen; they should be respected; they should be loved.

So to re-iterate: this is why I decided to exchange my hoodie.

And as luck would have it, products ordered through LandsEnd.com can be returned at Sears. Sears is located in the CambridgeSide Galleria Mall, which is about a fifteen minute walk from where I get my car fixed.

There is a second part to this story…..but I don’t have time to finish it hear……so I will be back.

For now, here are my Thanksgiving Football picks:

DETROIT +3 over Green Bay

DALLAS -14 over Jets

Indy -12 over ATLANTA: This is the NFL Network’s new Annual Thankgiving night game. I hope its horrible. The NFL Network is ridiculous: just admit that you are a regular cable station already. Why the fuss? You’re already the most powerful sports league in the country…..do you really need to make a ruckus over this? For God’s Sake, there is good programming on this station….I want to watch it. You get ad revenue, assholes.

So out of spite, I hope Indy kills Atlanta in an absolutely terrible game that no one watches.

And you know what…..the odds are good.

I’ll be back to finish this story. Have a Happy Thanksgiving.

Until Next Time,

Greg

Word of the Day: Upakrida (Sanskrit)

Upakrida (Sanskrit): A place for playing sports, a sports arena.

I bet you didn’t know any Sanskrit before reading this. Well, now you do. There will be many teams facing off in Upakridas today, and I can’t wait.

I may write about football these days, but name me another column that talks about football and teaches you Sanskrit. C’mon, I dare ya. If you find on, let me know.

And in case you weren’t aware: according to the Cologne Digital Sanskrit Lexicon, the Minister of the Sports, aka, the Master of the Revels, is known as the Kelisaciva. That’s right…..if you run into the Master of the Revels today, call him by his Sanskrit title, Kelisaciva, and see how he reacts.

Read on for more tidbits, a couple short stories (storiettes, actually), and some rudimentary football analysis.

For your reading pleasure……

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Home teams in CAPS:

JACKSONVILLE -3 over San Diego: I used to read Bill Simmons a lot; he’s a columnist on espn.com. Some of you probably realize this since I totally steal his style when I write my football picks. Anyway, my point is this: he would often talk about the obvious game, and how it was wise to stay away from games that everyone seemed to be putting money on, due to the obvious-ness of who would cover.

Now…..I haven’t been keeping up with who’s betting on what this week. I have no idea who’s putting their money on Jacksonville, or on San Diego. I don’t know.

But what I do know is this: this line seems obvious to me. In my opinion, a fairly hot Jacksonville team is going to kill a fairly mediocre/sometimes very good San Diego team at home. It seems pretty obvious.

With that being said, I am not going to take Simmons advice: I’m going to go with what I see as being obvious. Call me stupid, or maybe even reckless. I’m going with the obvious. Maybe I’ll buck the system….if everyone sees this as being obvious, and they go against it because its too obvious, then maybe the ‘obvious’ becomes the ‘obvious’, and is, therefore, no longer ‘obvious.’

We’ll see.

INDY -14.5 over Kansas City: Hmmm…….should I take the Chiefs? That’s a lot of points for Indy to cover….a whole lotta points. But the Chiefs…..they’re not bad, right? Right??

Umm…..I don’t know. They lost last week at home to Denver, who kinda sucks. And their starting QB singlehandledy lost my fantasy game last week, so he sucks. And they’re coached by a guy who admits that he doesn’t know how to use the internet, which is pretty much the equivilant of saying he doesn’t know how to take a poop by himself during this day and age, so he sucks. And they’re playing on the carpet at Indy, which probably means they’ll suck. And Bob Sanders may or may not be pissed off, and he doesn’t suck. And Joseph Addai is pretty sick, which is the opposite of sucking. And since KC seems to suck, I guess they’re actually not pretty good….atleast this week.

MINNESOTA -4.5 over Oakland: Anyone who takes Oakland in this game has the intelligence of a Stegasaurus. It’s been said by highly respected palentoligists that the Stegasaurus had a brain the size of a walnut. Although, they also had the really cool plates on their backs.

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Cleveland -3 over BALTIMORE: Baltimore are homedogs, ehhh? Cleveland, favored on the road, you say??? Hmmm….in-tee-westing. Seems like a trap game….maybe one of those obvious games we talked about earlier. But you know what….Baltimore is terrible. They’re not even medicocre….they fooled people for about two weeks into thinking they were mediocre, but they’re really terrible. Plus, Romeo Crennel’s a good guy. Go with Cleveland, bro.

Pittburgh -9.5 over JETS: I’ve read that Pittsburgh is one of the cleanest and most underrated cities in the U.S.

Tampa Bay -3 over ATLANTA: Atlanta has more strip clubs per capita than any other city in the country.

Arizona +3 over CINCY: First underdog pick of the week!!! You know why I’m taking Zona as underdogs?!?! No really, do you?!?!

Because of the following hypothetical situation:

Walking down the side of the road, I heard the engine coming from miles away. I looked up at the sun. It seemed to smile down on me, whispering You’ll never drink again. Ever. You will die on this road. Thirsty.

No, Sun, I thought, there is a car coming. And he will save me.

The car pulled up several minutes later. And in the front seat sat a man with a Bengals shirt.

“Hey there, Boy!!!” he shouted. “I’m here to save your life. Right up the road, I’m gonna pull into my mansion and set you up in a bedroom. You will have free rein to do whatever you want. You will live with 5o of the most beautiful single women in the world, and I don’t even live there: it will be just you to keep them company. A gourmet chef will supply you with food; 25 plasma TVs have already been set up, with all the cable hook-ups, including the Direct TV NFL Package (RedZone Channel included).

The finest wines in the world are located in my basement; the finest champange in the world can be found in my ample refrigerators. On Monday nights you can hang out on the veranda and eat grapes, on Wednesdays famous musical groups come to perform privately, and on Thursday nights Snoop Dogg comes by to drink forties and play cards. And all of this is free…..because I really like me, you will never have to pay me rent, or work another day in your life.

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But there’s one thing you need to do first…..you need to put $10 on the Cinncinati Bengals today. They are playing Arizona Cardinals at home. They are favored by three points. Chad Johnson is playing, as is Chris Henry. I really think they have a decent shot. Carson Palmer may throw for 500 yards today. If you just put $10 on this game, you can live this life, no strings attached.”

Reaching into my pocket, I found my pocket. My hands were bloody and cracked from the sun; I could barely grasp it, but I pulled it out into the desert air. Opening its folds, I found a crisp, ten dollar bill, and pulled. Alexander Hamilton seemed to mock me; the sun shone off his face.

Falling to my knees, I held up the 10 dollar bill in the air.

“The day I bet on the Bengals, is the day I rot in Hell!!! Good day, sir, and Good Riddance!!!!” I shouted for the whole world to hear. My voice bounced off the rocky walls of the desert surrounding us. It spoke again as it echoed across the valley.

The man looked shocked; he glanced away.

“I thought,” he stammered, ” I thought we might be fans together. But I guess….I guess now my dream is crushed. Thats all I wanted…..another Bengals fan in this god forsaken Hell.”

As he rolled up his passenger side window to conserve his AC, a single tear fell onto his Bengals jersey.

He drove away.

Several hours later, I lay on the side of the road. Death was not a question; Death was a certain. A vulture took a bite out of my neck. It didn’t matter….soon my flesh would be gone, and my bones would be all the birds would have. And try as they might, no vulture was going to eat my bones.
In my left hand, I held Alexander Hamilton.

“You’ll never get my money, birds,” I croaked. “Neither you, nor the Bengals. You can have my flesh, but not my Ten.”

-Greg

PHILLY -9.5 over Miami: It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia is one of the best TV shows I have ever seen. Seriously. Part South Park, part Arrested Development (not the rap group, dude!), part Curb Your Enthusiasm, it plays on FX on Thursday nights. I highly, highly recommend it. You don’t know what you’re missing.

New England -16 over Buffalo: Standing above the valley, the Patriots looked down below. Huge, gigantic beasts roamed everywhere. They were destroying the corn.

Samuel: Where do you think they came from? What, praytell, are they?

William: Beasts from Hell, I think. It may well be over, Samuel. We should have been Puritans.

Samuel: Do you think the Redcoats have something to do with it? Maybe the damn Tories brought them from somewhere.

William: I don’t know, Samuel, I don’t know. I guess we’ll have to kill them.

Looking up at the hill above them, the Buffalo saw two figures standing and talking.

Where are we, they thought. Where are we?

DALLAS -11 over Washington: The Cowboy and Indian sat next to each other in the den. The TV played in front of them.

“Why are we always killing each other on TV?” the Cowboy asked.

“Because that’s how it happened,” the Indian answered.

[Just so everyone knows….I hate the Redskins. I hope Dallas destroys them.]

HOUSTON -1.5 over New Orleans: True Story: My friend used to live in Houston, and drive to New Orleans once in awhile. On the way, he would have to stop at gas stations to fill up.

Once in Louisiana, the gas stations allow gambling. Walking into gas stations, he told me that there would actually be blackjack tables present. Can you imagine that? Playing Blackjack at a gas station in Louisiana?

Well, if you can’t, then I can….and I can say its not on the top of my list of things to do. For the record, my friend said these places were “scary.”

But I just want to know…..who would the dealer be? The cashier? The gas pumper? The sandwich guy? Did they just have a dealer who hung around all day? Some day, I need to pull up to a gas station in Louisiana and get to the bottom of this.

Ohh, and by the way…..Andre Johnson is finally back, and seeing as the Saints are officially wishy-washy, I take Houston.

GREEN BAY -9.5 over Carolina: I’m not worried about Green Bay winning by ten; I think they will, no problem.

What I’m worried about is Steve Smith. Seriously, for fantasy owners, this guy is the equivilant of the super hot girlfriend who has emotional problems, is high maitenance, and suddenly turns ugly every so often (but when she does, you know she’ll turn miracously hot again, and all your friends know this too). Seriously, its not worth the stress. A few years back, Steve and I were living in Fantasy Heaven together. Now…not so much.

DETROIT +2.5 over Giants: Homedog DuJour! Try it, you’ll love it!! Not everyone is brave enough to give it a whirl, but those who are get a true surprise!!! Step right up….only $3.50 today, the Sunday Special!

SAN FRAN +3 over St. Louis: Here’s a Mind Riddler for you: How is it that St. Louis, who until last week had no wins, can walk into an opposing field and be 3 point favorites.

Ohh, I know, I know!!! Its because they’re playing the 49ers, who are also terrible!

Very good, very good. You are correct. But with this being said…..doesn’t something feel fishy here? Ummm, should St. Louis really be road favorites here? Remember kids…..there not playing on the carpet this week…..they’re playing on grass.

Just think twice before putting all your marbles on St. Louis.

Chicago +5.5 over SEATTLE: I can’t believe I’m saying this…..but I like the Bears better than the Seahawks. Ohh…..what a brutal, brutal game this will be.

Tennessee +2 over DENVER: Another one of those obvious games…..and I’m going with the obvious.

Last Week: 4-9-1 (ouch!)

The Season: 73-62-8

Until Next Time,

Greg

My Finger!!

I was going to type a lot of stuff (honest), but my finger feels weird.

First off: If you read my Pink Floyd thing, I wrote more: check it out.

My finger’s getting worse; my whole hand is becoming numb.

Quick random facts before I get pissed:

Random Music Fact: DJ Shadow’s 1996 debut solo album, Endroducing….., was the first album to use only samples from other records on it as audio (one drum machine was used to create beats). He was entered into the Guinness Book of Records for the feat.

Its shooting up my entire arm…..I can’t do this….I need to get my picks in, and then worry about if I’ll never be able to type at a computer again.

typing with lefthand only

home team in CAPS

Jack + 4 over TENN This just seems to close. Both teams are tough. I imagine this to be a real battle. Two good running backs (Lendale White & Jone-Drew) going at it. I think its a two or three point game.

KC -3 over Denver: Denver is not very good, and they’re playing a hot KC team at Arrowhead. I’m gonna go out on a limb and say that KC wins by atleast a touchdown.

Buffalo -3 over MIAMI: No way Miami covers. Buffalo’s actually decent…I wouldn’t be surprised if Miami goes winless. I ain’t taking them until they win a game.

Cleveland +10 over PITTSBURGH: This is a tough one: Cleveland’s playing well, but Pitt is playing great, and they’re playing at home. But Cleveland is fiesty enough that I don’t want to put 10 points against them…..I’ll take the points.

NEW ORLEANS -10.5 over St. Louis: Surprise of the week: Finding Drew Brees on waivers in my work Fantasy League, which was a mini-miracle (obviously somewhat of a amateur league if he’s on waivers in the first place).

The funny thing about New Orleans: I kept putting my faith into these guys in the beginning of the season, and they kept playing like crap. It was like they were determined to prove to everyone that, “Hey, we don’t care what you think, WE ARE NOT GOOD. We don’t care if you believe in us, or if we were great last year and have no logical reason to be bad….WE ARE GOING TO LOSE!!!” I finally got sick of backing them.

Now, all of the sudden, they’re great again. Drew Brees is a fantasy monter. I just don’t get it. What the Hell happened? Why were they bad in the first place? Is it something in the water down there?

Anyway, I assume they’re good again; doesn’t make much sense, but whatever. And I assume they’ll smoke the Rams.

CAROLINA -3.5 over Atlanta: Atlanta’s really not that bad, but I just can’t back them at all this year: too much bad karma. As for Carolina: I’m rooting for them soley for fantasy reasons. So I’m picking them because I have to.

WASHINGTON -3 over Philly: This game should be easy for the Skins. Should be. Ofcourse, that doesn’t mean much these days.

GREEN BAY -6 over Minnesota: If it was in the Dome, it’d be a different story. But its not; on grass, in the cold, I think Green Bay runs the table.

BALTIMORE -3.5 over Cincy: Uggggh. That’s all I can think about when looking at these two teams. The two teams I would absolutely not gamble on in the entire league are playing each other. I hope the game ends in a 0-0 tie at the end of overtime. But it won’t: one of these cretin teams will win. I hate them both.

Funny side story: Chris Henry, troubled Cincy receiver, is absolutely hilarious. I want to finish this up, so instead of me posting a link, go to Deadspin and search for it.

Chicago -3.5 over OAKLAND: Uggggh…..two more teams I hate. Whatever…..I hope they both die.

GIANTS +1.5 over Dallas: Way to little respect for the G-Men, at home.

Detroit +1.5 over ARIZONA: This is one of those “HMMMM…….” games, if you know what I mean. I’ll take the underdog.

Indy -3.5 over SAN DIEGO: Indy ain’t a fluke….they coulda beat the Pats last week. Heading into Sunny California, they should be angry, which is bad for the Bolts.

I am, however, hoping for big things from Antonio Gates. Hey Philip Rivers….stop sucking so hard.

San Fran +9.5 over SEATTLE: Sure, its a long shot…..but it might make my Monday night more interesting to root for San Fran.

Last Week: 10-4

Overall: 69-53-7

Note: My hand feels a little bit better, so, for your effort:

Random Sports Trivia: Lou Gerhig was the first pro athlete to have his number retired. He was #13.

Until Next Time,

Greg

Australian Pink Floyd: A Down Under Review

“One of these days, I’m going to cut you into little pieces!”

One of These Days, Meddle, 1971

The above quote is what that crazy/terrifying voice is trying to tell you about half-way through Pink Floyd’s 1971 song One of These Days.

Ohh, Pink Floyd: how you scare us!

But seriously….I saw Australian Pink Floyd re-create a Pink Floyd show at the Agganis Arena last week, and quiete frankly, it rocked.

Thing is: I started writing last Friday, had scheduling conflicts for about 8 days straight which kept me from finishing, then my internet stopped working two days ago, so here I am, at the tail end of my lunch break at work, writing this Preface, if you can call it that. I think I’m going to publish this, and then tinker with it later, cause it ain’t perfect, but I want to get it out there.

So turn on your dark lamps everyone….the shows about to Begin.

I saw Australian Pink Floyd this past week; they were great. They started off with a complete cover of Dark Side of the Moon, synced note for note with their light/video show.

During this day and age, it seems to go without saying: if you see a Pink Floyd cover show (because they don’t do shows anymore, because they hate each other), Dark Side of the Moon needs to be played, at some point, in its entirety. Some people may think this is a bad thing, seeing as it is somewhat cliched and contrived; I see it as a good thing, seeing as it is a freaking masterpiece. When Roger Waters toured earlier this year, they started off the show with other stuff, then played Dark Side about halfway through; Australian Pink Floyd decided to kick it off with a bang; I thought it was pretty cool.

There’s really not much to even say about this part of the show: it was tremendous. If you know the album well, you can only imagine how good it was.

Following this they took about a half hour show, and then ripped for the rest of the night.

Memorable songs included Shine on You Crazy Diamond (parts 1 and 2….part 1 kicked off the second part of the show), Set the Controls for the Heart of the Sun (an oldie from their second album, A Saucerful of Secrets, 1968), One of These Days (absolutely unreal f**king version of this…..not only was it about 8 minutes long, but a giant, inflatable kangaroo came out to dance on stage….yes, you read that right), Another Brick in the Wall (complete with a fake helicopter and search light scanning the crowd), some really great material from The Wall, Wish You Were Here, an absolutely explosive version of Comfortably Numb (this version was about 15 minutes long, and was capped off when a gigantic disco ball descended from the ceiling), and a ripping version of Run Like Hell to finish off the encore (I usually don’t even like this song, but it was terrific, complete with the artists asking everyone, “Is anyone out there paranoid? Does anyone think they’re being followed? Run…..Run Like Hell!!!!).

Yes, I thought this show was terrific. My companion wasn’t as impressed; I got the tickets free through work, and he was a little upset, for a couple reasons: people wouldn’t stop filming/taking photos with their cellphones (yes, this is a very annoying new phenomenon we’re seeing at concerts…..but while it bothers me, it bothered my friend much more); the crowd was lame (yes, the crowd was lame….located in the Agganis Arena, B.U. security was all over the place, and the crowd in genreral was fairly old; there wasn’t much energy); and he claimed that there was “too much rock.”

A few notes on his criticism: while the cellphones and crowd were a little lame, the band had nothing to do with this. Nothing. While it would have been better to be surrounded by a wild crowd of mangly hippies, I didn’t let anyone around me ruin the performance.

As for my friend’s statement claiming that there was too much rock, here’s my rebuttal: Pink Floyd has a lot of acoustic stuff in their archives, notably on the albums Meddle, 1971 (my favorite Pink Floyd album) and The Wall, 1979, but as a cover band doing as much varied Floyd stuff as possible over the span of three hours, I don’t really think there’s a point to delve into a lot of acoustic stuff. They played a couple acoustics from The Wall; they played Wish You Here; there was some melodic stuff on Dark Side.

If they were playing all underground Floyd stuff, then I would have expected more, but for what they were doing, I thought it was fine.

As for my thoughts on how the show could have been better: I would have liked to have heard just a couple more of the old songs. Just a couple. They played Set the Controls for the Heart of the Sun, which was great, but if they could have thrown in just one or two more (like say Astonomy Domine, or maybe even Careful With That Axe, Eugene), that would have been awesome. They did play One of These Days, which I consider to be old (anything pre-Dark Side should be considered old), and they played it great. So I can’t really complain….but that is something I would have liked.

I also expected them to play Welcome To The Machine, from Wish You Here (1975), and really wanted them to play it. Oh Well.

And ofcourse, the greatest Pink Floyd song of all-time, Echoes, from Meddle, wasn’t played. But seeing as it is about a half-hour long, once again, I can’t complain.

But honestly….these are all nitpicks. You can only nitpick so much.

Growing up, I had a strange understanding of Pink Floyd. They were famous for singing a song about a wall and children being picked on by teachers, and having the children sing the chorus. They were famous for having an album of continuous music which I didn’t really understand. They were famous for being weird.

But more than anything…..they were famous for their extravagent light shows at concerts. I remember being at a barbeque as a little kid, and one of my mom’s friends saying something like, “Wow, that’s just a like a Pink Floyd light show.”

I didn’t really understand it, but I started looking into it (as much as a thirteen year old without internet could), and came to the following conclusion: not only did Pink Floyd play music at their concerts, they had extravagent lightshows, which people seemed to enjoy with equal enthuisiasm.

And so, many years later, as I was preparing to watch the closest thing I will ever see resembling a live Pink Floyd show, the following thought crossed my mind: how will the light show be?

The answer: the light show was awesome. There was also video to go with the show, and as mentioned above, some inflatables and a disco ball. There’s no way to really describe it, except to say that it rocked. My words will do it no justice.

And so I’ve finally finished this review of this concert. People have already started commenting, as you can see below; hopefully, now that I’ve finished, ya’ll can give me some more feedback.

Before I go, I will give the following grades: my hypothetical grades, had I been alive to see the real Pink Floyd in 1975, and my real grades, for the Australian Pink Floyd show I just saw. I include the original show as a control: since I’ve never seen Pink Floyd, I really don’t know what I’m talking about, so I can’t honestly grade them without first imagining what it would have been like to see Pink Floyd:

Real Pink Floyd Show:

Pink Floyd at The Boston Garden, 1975 (I don’t know if they were touring at the time, but bear with me here):

Music Quality: A+

Music Selection: A (I would imagine them to play stuff from their new album, Wish You Were Here, and to delve into a healthy amount of their other stuff. Seeing as the The Wall won’t come out for four years, we won’t hear anything from this era.)

Light Show Quality: A+

General Atmosphere: A++ (the amount of crazy people at a Pink Floyd show in the mid-Seventies would be probably be substantial. Crazy people make for great concert companions.)

Food: C+  I don’t know what the Garden served in ’75, but it was probably worse than what they served in the ’80s and early ’90s, which wasn’t great.

Overall Grade: A

Australian Pink Floyd at the Agganis Arena, 2007:

Music Quality: A (I can’t give them an A+ for some reason, but they certainly ripped, so they deserve and A).

Music Selection: B+ ( I wished they played more old stuff. They played some stuff from The Division Bell era that we didn’t need to hear. But they kept it to a minimum, they played what we needed to hear, and they did just enough to keep the die-hards happy [barely]).

Light Show Quality: A++ I never saw an actual Pink Floyd light show, but we’ve come a long way in the technology department…..I think we got the 1975 light technicians beat.

General Atmosphere: D+ It most certainly deserved a D, but here’s why I gave it the plus: it didn’t hamper how I viewed the show. Yes, a wild crowd would have made the experience better; but the crowd at Agganis didn’t take away from my experience. My friend, as stated below, doesn’t feel the same way: if he was grading, he’d probably give them the always feared “Red F” that all the kids talked about in the 1st grade (What was a ‘red F’? Was it just a F-, written in red ink? Is there such a thing as a F-? These are questions I dwell on sometimes…but not often.) But, seeing as I’m the teacher here, they get a D+.

Food: Incomplete: I bought sweet potato fries, but accidentally left them at the counter.

My final grade: A- They did a great job covering Pink Floyd….I recommend them.

Cheers!

Until Next Time,

Greg

Damn, I Wish I Wrote Yesterday.

I haven’t been writing much lately, but Friday night, out of nowhere, ideas started flying around my head again.

It felt good; I hadn’t had any good ideas in awhile.

I started writing Friday night, couldn’t finish what I started, so I decided to dedicate a large part of my Saturday to my writing.

I woke up feeling fresh: first, I ran to local hardware store, grabbed some lag screws, and finally fixed my damn creaky bed.  I was making progress, getting things done.

But then my day fell apart when my roomate started watching It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, and I sat down with him, and I wasted away about 4 hours because the show is incredible.

So that’s why I didn’t write yesterday; now I’m pissed.

I’m also mad because I feel like shit this morning, I need to get my picks in because I have to finish what I started, I don’t feel like writing, and now I have a bunch of unfinished shit, and my laundry’s not finished.

Whatever….here’s my picks.

Home team in CAPS.

Washington -4 over JETS:  I hate to sound like a hardcore homer, but this is the way it is right now:  there a really good teams in the NFL right now, there are a lot of bad/mediocre teams in this league, and then there’s the Patriots.  Seriously, the Pats are in a league of their own (although it will be interesting to see how they do against the Colts today).  Anyway, my point is that the Redskins are a good team, even if they got slaughtered by the Pats last week.  Remember, the Pats are playing on a whole different plane right now; they’re almost sub-human.  Going into the Meadowlands to play a mediocre Jets team, I think the Redskins get right back on track and come out a with a good win.

Green Bay +2.5 over KANSAS CITY:  This is a tough one to call.  Suddenly, out of nowhere, the Chiefs are good, especially at home.  On the same hand, Green Bay is a team who have proven to be good, but susceptibable to stupid mistakes.  Its a tough one to call, as displayed by the spread.

What I think happens is that its tight all game, maybe even overtime, but in the end, Green Bay squeaks out with a win.  Don’t know why…..its just what I think.

TAMPA BAY -3.5 over Zona:  I’ll make this statement right now:  Jeff Garcia has had a better overall career than Donovan McNabb.  There….I said it.

TENNESSEE -5 over Carolina:  We’ll see what happens (I got nothing else….sorry).

San Fransisco +3 over ATLANTA:  Screw Atlanta.

Jacksonville +3.5 over NEW ORLEANS:  Another tough game……I think Jacksonville takes it (I’m running short on time….these little blurbs are gonna start sucking).

DETROIT -3 over Denver:  Go Detroit.

BUFFALO +1 over Cinncinati:  No way Cincy wins this game in Buffalo…no way.

MINNESOTA +7 over San Diego:  I think this game ends up close.

CLEVELAND -1 over Seattle:  Is Cleveland really favored in this game?  Am I really taking them?  Yup….yup I am.

New England -5.5 over INDY:  AND THE LORD SAID……..LET THERE BE FOOTBALL.

Houston +3 over OAKLAND:  This is a spite pick….I hate Oakland right now.

Dallas -3.5 over PHILLY:  Ride ’em Cowboys (wow, that was lame).

PITTSBURGH -9.5 over Baltimore:  This game sucks…..seriously.

Okay…..this may have been the crappiest post I’ve ever written….but I hope to be back soon with other stuff.

Last Week:  9-4

The Season:   59-49-7

I’ll write about something else soon….promise.

Until Next Time,

Greg