04.23.10 – A Friday

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word

anon [uhnon] adv. 1. in a short time; soon 2. at another time 3. Archaic. at once, immediately idiom 4. ever and anon, now and then: occasionally

birthday

William Shakespeare (1564), William Penn (1621), James Buchanan (1791), Stephen A. Douglas (1813), Cow Cow Davenport (1894), Lester B. Pearson (1897), Vladimir Nabokov (1899), Shirley Temple (1928), Roy Orbison (1936), Lee Majors (1939), Sandra Dee (1942), Joyce DeWitt (1949), Michael Moore (1954), Jan Hooks (1957), Valerie Bertinelli (1960), George Lopez (1961), John Cena (1977), Kal Penn (1977), John Oliver (1977), Jaime King (1979)

standpoint

Hey, guys, remember being 21 and out at the ballgame with your buddies? Drinking beers? Heckling the opposing team and their fans? Eating a half dozen hot dogs? Those were good times, am I right? You know I am.

And remember those times when, say, a guy would be sitting in front of you with his daughters and, maybe, he didn’t like you cursing so god damn much and you, or one of your buddies, decided to show him who’s boss by sticking your finger down your throat and throwing up all over 11-year old daughter? Yeah, those were the days.

Wait. That doesn’t sound right, does it? You’re right. It’s not normal. That is unless you’re some fuckstick from Cherry Hill, NJ named Matthew Clemmens. After his idiot friend got kicked out for cursing too much due to a complaint from the 15-year old girl in front of him, Clemmens thought the best way to retaliate was to stick his fingers down his throat and vomit on the girl’s little sister.

Both girls were there with their father, Michael Vangelo, an off-duty police officer from Easton, PA. To his credit, Vangelo restrained himself and tended to his daughter instead of smacking the shit out of Clemmens. Fortunately, a few of the other spectators took care of that for him by holding the clown down and giving him the business until police arrived on the scene. Clemmens was arrested but not before pulling the same stunt, throwing up on one of the officers. He’s being brought up on a bunch of charges but, likely as not, very little will come from it

First of all, who does that? I have to say I’ve got an above-average imagination but puking on anyone, not to mention a little girl, is something I couldn’t have ever conjured, even on my best day. Clemmens doesn’t need a trial, he needs a shrink. And fast.

Also, I’d like to offer a sincere thanks to Clemmens for adding yet another chapter in the lore that is the creative misguided genius mindset of the Philadelphia sports fan. I mean, it’s embarrassing and all, but at least it’s not dull. Here’s a list of some of my favs.

We boo Santa Claus. Although the true story told in its original context isn’t really as bad as the legend of it. But, still, we boo Santa.

We throw stuff like snowballs and batteries. Because, why chuck anything at anybody if there’s no threat of bodily harm?  That’s right, folks, we’re the reason every flake of snow gets removed from a stadium before game time. You’re welcome.

We will fight you. This happens mostly at Flyers games, the most famous when some dipshit thought it was a good idea to jump into the penalty box with Tie Domi, one of the toughest hombres ever to lace up skates.

→ We dislike our own guys more than anyone. You hate Donovan McNabb?Mike Schmidt? Eric Lindros? Allen Iverson? Cool. Us too. Exceptional athletes getting rewarded  for their performances with a steady stream of boos.

I could go on and on (and on). But you get the picture. The truth of it is, Philadelphia sports fans are pretty solid folks, content to go to the games and have some fun but that’s the way in most cities, I guess. The difference is our bad seeds. They’re incredibly devious. And they suck. And they’re dragging the rest of us down into the sewer with them.

quotation

When we ask ourselves which person in our lives means the most to us, we often find that it is those who, instead of giving advice, solutions, or cures, have chosen rather to share our pain and touch our wounds with a warm and tender hand. The friend who can be silent with us in a moment of despair or confusion, who can stay with us in an hour of grief and bereavement, who can tolerate not knowing, not curing, not healing and face with us the reality of our powerlessness, that is a friend who cares.Henri Nouwen

tune

It seems like a lifetime ago that I had to get up every Saturday morning at 6am for work. (I know, right?) I blasted “Saturday Morning” by Eels as soon as I started my car for the drive in and, somehow, it always seemed to help.

gallimaufry

→ Yesterday was Earth Day. Here’s a little something I learned. Spooky.

→ Let’s face it. You text. I text. EVERYBODY texts.

→ In the ongoing battle for internet supremacy being fought by Facebook and Twitter, CNN.com has finally declared a winner: It’s Facebook.

01.08.10 – A Friday

WORD

colloquial [kuhloh-kwee-uhl] adj. 1. characteristic of or appropriate to ordinary or familiar conversation rather than formal speech or writing; informal 2. involving or using conversation

BIRTHDAY

Hans von Bülow (1830), Frank Nelson Doubleday (1862), Larry Storch (1923), Soupy Sales (1926), Elvis Presley (1935), Bob Eubanks (1938), Graham Chapman (1941), Robby Krieger (1946), David Bowie (1947), Mike Reno (1955), Paul Hester (1959), R. Kelly (1967), Ami Dolenz (1969), Sean Paul (1973)

STANDPOINT

As I type this, I’m watching a TNT promo for Southland. Last year, NBC dropped the cop drama before it even debuted. TNT scooped it up and will start running the series, in its entirety, this Tuesday. (TNT is waiting to see how the ratings go for the seven episodes NBC aired plus six never-before-seen ones before deciding to order a new season.)

As I’ve felt in the past, I’m currently confounded why some quality shows get the boot and other crappy shows (According To Jim, The Real World, Judge Judy, JAG) seem to run on forever. I guess it shouldn’t surprise me since quality entertainment seems to be a notion no one concern themselves with.

It got me thinking about some other shows that were inexplicably dropped before their time. The following is a list of my favorite shows abandoned too soon.

QUOTATION

The National Rifle Association says that, “Guns don’t kill people, uh, people do.” But I think, I think the gun helps. You know? I think it helps. I just think just standing there going, “Bang!” That’s not going to kill too many people, is it?Eddie Izzard

TUNE

There’s not a ton of information out there on Seattle-based band The Pale Pacific (formerly The Pale). I came upon the 2005 release Urgency a while back and it became one of my favorite “half albums” – those containing an equal amount of both good and so-so songs. (I’ve got a lot of those, by the way.) One of the better songs is “Identity Theft.” Give it a listen.

GALLIMAUFRY

I’m not so naive to think all of this wintry weather going on is proof-positive that global warming is hogwash. But -50° wind chills in the Midwest don’t exactly help Al Gore’s cause.

→ Someone needs to be in a world of hurt to attempt to stab themselves to death. That’s exactly what Howard Stern’s sidekick, Artie Lange, did. Nine times. Long bouts of depression and numerous episodes of drug abuse apparently led him to it. Here’s hoping the guy can find some kind of peace and shake loose of his demons.

→ The other day, I reported that Vampire Weekend and Spoon were releasing albums next Tuesday. I lied. Vampire Weekend is releasing Contra next week, but Spoon’s Transference won’t come out until two weeks later. In any case, should be a good couple of months coming up for new music with Ben Kweller, Eels, Beach House, David Bowie, Midlake, Hot Chip, Peter Gabriel, Field Music, Jason Falkner, Shout Out Louds, Rogue Wave, The Whigs, Aloha, Frightened Rabbit, Ted Leo and the Pharmacists, The Morning Benders and White Stripes all poised with fresh material.

04.14.09 – Tuesday

[Note: Today’s post is a little longer than usual due to the passing of Philadelphia’s legendary broadcaster, Harry Kalas – a man who will forever be remembered as “The Voice of the Philadelphia Phillies.”]

Word: sycophant [sikuh-fuhnt, – fant, sahy-kuh-] n. a self-seeking, servile flatterer; fawning parasite

Birthday: Shorty Rogers (1924), Rod Steiger (1925), Loretta Lynn (1935), Pete Rose (1941), Richard Jeni (1957), Brad Garrett (1960), Robert Carlyle (1961), Anthony Michael Hall (1968), Adrien Brody (1973), Sarah Michelle Gellar (1977), Win Butler (1980)

Occurence: 1865Abraham Lincoln is shot from behind by in Ford’s Theatre by John Wilkes Booth.

Standpoint: I remember one afternoon in college. My buddy Joe Taylor and I were watching NFL Films. I mentioned that the narrator’s voice sounded kind of familiar. Joe sat up from the couch. “You don’t know who that is?” I told my friend I didn’t. “It’s Harry Kalas! The guy who calls Phillies games with Richie Ashburn!  Are you shitting me?”I wasn’t “shitting” him. I just wasn’t an avid Phillies fan. At that point, I saw no reason to stir Joe up any further by explaining to him I didn’t know who Richie Ashburn was.

Harry Kalas died yesterday at the age of 73 while preparing to call a Phillies-Nationals game in Washington D.C. Before that afternoon with Joe, I did know who he was. It didn’t matter that I wasn’t a baseball fan. Growing up in Philadelphia, it was nearly impossible to not know the man who could’ve patented the phrase, “It’s outta here!”  After college, I eventually did get into baseball and came to share the common reverence held for “The Voice of the Philadelphia Phillies.” He was one of those rare announcers whose love for the game and his team oozed out into the living rooms of all watching. His soothing voice could go from completely relaxed to incredibly excited with the swing of a bat.

The game of baseball lost a true living legend yesterday. The one silver lining being repeated everywhere was that at least Kalas lived long enough to see one more Phillies World Championship last October. I was actually outside Citizens Bank Park when it happened and heard Kalas call it live when Brad Lidge got that third out. Simultaneously, I heard the roar from the crowd in the stadium. My friends out in the parking lot, looked toward the ballpark and lamented the fact that we weren’t inside to experience the ensuing euphoria. I thought to myself that I wouldn’t have changed a thing. I got to hear the best broadcaster in baseball history call the final out of the World Series. It was the people inside who missed out.

Further Reading.

Quotation: Duct tape is like the force. It has a light side, a dark side and it holds the universe together. Carl Zwanzig

Tune: I first heard this song back on MTV’s 120 Minutes. (Remember when MTV played good songs?) “Mr E.’s Beautiful Blues” immediately made me buy everything I could by Eels.

Gallimaufry: Amazon.com is under fire for their new “adult” policy. The online bookstore has being accused of removing only “adult” literature dealing with homosexuality. (Amazon is claiming a glitch on the site.) Click here to learn more and sign the petition. (Thanks to Beth Treisner)…I suspect that “Facebook Users Get Worse Grades in College” is the first of many articles I’ll read in the next year about the negative effects of the popular social networking site…Al Franken is still not a United States Senator but it appears to be a matter of time until he is. Hey, Minnesota, let the guy in already. Jesse “The Body” Ventura used to be your governor. I mean, seriously.

Incoming: Tomorrow – What’s StumbleUpon?  Thursday – More of your Annoying Sayings/Misused Words (This is now going to be a permanent Thursday thing.) Friday3 Things To Do In Philly When You’re Dead and 5 People I Wish Would Move to Another Planet.