04.07.10 – A Wednesday

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word

extant [ek-stuhnt, ik-stant] adj. 1. in existence; still existing; not destroyed or lost: There are only three extant copies of the document 2. Archaic.  standing out; protruding

birthday

Francis Xavier (1506), William Wordsworth (1770), Allen Dulles (1893), Walter Winchell (1897), Percy Faith (1908), Billie Holiday (1915), Ravi Shankar (1920), James Garner (1928), Wayne Rogers (1933), Jerry Brown (1938), Freddie Hubbard (1938), Francis Ford Coppola (1939), David Frost (1939), John Oates (1949), Janis Ian (1951), Jackie Chan (1954), Christopher Darden (1956), James “Buster” Douglas (1960), Hugh O’Connor (1962), Russell Crowe (1964), Bill Bellamy (1965)

standpoint

Instead of working on today’s standpoint, I decided to do some other writing. Come back tomorrow for some more.

quotation

To be nobody but yourself in a world which is doing its best, day and night, to make you everybody else means to fight the hardest battle which any human being can fight; and never stop fighting. e. e. cummings

tune

I used to have this really great collection of live songs from The Samples. And the best one was this live version of “Feel Us Shaking” from a show in which this genius threw a beer can at the head of the bassist. (Who does that?) Lead singer Sean Kelly did the song acoustically while his bandmate got his head checked out. I haven’t been able to find it since but below is the closest I’ve discovered.

gallimaufry

Couldn’t have put this better myself. My favorite reason? #35 – Phillies aren’t rude enough to chant P-H-I-L-S during Eagles games.

→ If you live in the San Francisco area, go check out my good friend Kevin Rolston in his newest endeavor, Noises Off. If Kevlo is involved, it’s bound to be worth your while.

→ Holy shit, as I’m linking to this, Stephen Colbert is talking about it on The Colbert Report. I’m not sure how I feel about the rule changes. But, really, isn’t a personal decision? Does anyone actually follow the official guidelines?

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02.08.10 – A Monday

word

ebullient [i-buhl-yuhnt, i-bool-] adj. 1. overflowing with fervor, enthusiasm, or excitement; high-spirited: The award winner was in an ebullient mood at the dinner in her honor 2. bubbling up like a boiling liquid

birthday

Samuel Butler (1612), John Ruskin (1819), William Tecumseh Sherman (1820), Jules Verne (1828), Kate Chopin (1850), Lana Turner (1921), Jack Lemmon (1925), Neal Cassady (1926), James Dean (1931), John Williams (1932), Ted Koppel (1940), Nick Nolte (1941), Robert Klein (1942), Mary Steenburgen (1953), John Grisham (1955), Vince Neil (1961), Joshua Kadison (1963), Gary Coleman (1968), Mary McCormack (1969), Seth Green (1974)

standpoint

I’m a football fan but not a huge one. I halfheartedly participate in two (2) fantasy leagues and have a moderate interest in my hometown Philadelphia Eagles, but I’m much less emotionally invested in the NFL than I let on. Most years, I watch the Super Bowl more out of some misplaced obligation to some archaic sense of manhood. But I didn’t feel the same way this year. I actually had a mildly strong desire to watch last night because I like both the Indianapolis Colts and the New Orleans Saints, along with their respective quarterbacks, Peyton Manning and Drew Brees.

But I was curious to see how Super Bowl XLIV would be a different experience for me. And, lucky for you, I chronicled it. Here goes.

Note: I was reasonably sure that the Colts would win and cover the spread (+5.5) and the over (57 pts.) would become a matter of fact.

Pregame

» Not going to lie, I watched golf until just about the start of the game so I didn’t get to see what inane crap led up to the actual footage from Miami.

» But I did tune in time to see the Colts get introduced onto the field to the same song by The Who that opens up every episode of CSI:Miami, which turned out to be all of The Who I needed.

» Queen Latifah sang America The Beautiful with a choir and musical accompaniment. It didn’t really work all that well. Looked like she was never really in sync. Carrie Underwood sang The Star-Spangled Banner and it was better. During all this, cameras were on Peyton Manning, who looked amped to the point he was cursing the fact Francis Scott Key and Katharine Bates were ever born.

» The next class of inductees to the Pro Football Hall of Fame were introduced as honorary whatevers to the coin toss. Emmitt Smith was the honorary coin tosser. Saints called heads. Smith flipped the coin directly at the Saints players, who sidestepped it. It was heads. Saints got the ball.

1st Quarter – 6:20(ish) PM

» Betty White and Abe Vigoda starred in a clever ad for Snickers. I’m completely sure those two actors were used because about 99% of viewers thought both had died years ago.

» The ad for the Boost Mobile Shuffle, featuring prominent members of the 1985 Super Bowl Champion Chicago Bears, was awful.

» In keeping with Hollywood’s trend of recycling, there’s another Robin Hood movie coming out starring Russell Crowe. Looks like both Braveheart and Gladiator ate a bunch of bows and arrows and vomited on each other. I’ll probably go see it.

» First quarter came to a close. Colts-10. Saints-0. I wasn’t paying much attention to the actual game.

2nd Quarter – 7:00 PM

» Pretty fast 1st quarter. At this point, I was certain the Colts were going to run away with the game.

» A Cars.com ad came on, detailing the life of a boy genius type doing all sorts of amazing boy genius type stuff. But when it came time to buy a car, he was at a loss. He looked to his mobile device for answers and, you guessed it, Cars.com came to the rescue. At one point during the ad, the boy genius delivered a baby Bengal tiger while on safari. That kicked off a conversation between my girlfriend and I where we discussed her desire to bring a baby panther into the apartment. Negotiations reached a stalemate after she refused to budge on the name of the baby panther. Oh well.

» The Saints began to make a game of it. Pretty sure they kicked a field goal.

» One ad had Jay Leno, Oprah Winfrey and David Letterman on the same couch talking about something. I’m not sure what because I was distracted. Leno didn’t look like he was actually there. The next ad (maybe) had Brett Favre making fun of the fact he never actually retires. I like it when celebrities/athletes know to do that.

» The Colts stopped the Saints on a 4th and goal from the 1-yard line with less than 2 minutes remaining in the half. See? I pay mind to the important stuff.

» I wasn’t quite sure how it happened but the Saints kick another field goal just as time expires on the 1st half. Colts – 10. Saints – 6.

Halftime – 7:50 PM

» The Who played. The Who sucked. I monitored Twitter feeds instead. Best Tweet? “Wake up your great grandma. The Who is on.”

3rd Quarter – 8:22 PM

» The Saints began the 2nd half with an onside kick. Which they recovered. Which turned out to be huge. Saints – 13. Colts – 10.

» According to a new Volkswagen ad, the classic car game, Punch Buggy, has now been expanded to include the entire Volkswagen fleet. As a matter of fact, it seems whatever substance it’s painting its cars with nowadays is so cutting edge, even Stevie Wonder can see it. Much to the chagrin of an arm sore Tracy Morgan. Classic.

» The Colts’ Joseph Addai ran in for a touchdown. Colts – 17. Saints – 13. I was a little disappointed about how good of a game it was becoming. I’m not used to the Super Bowl being about the Super Bowl. Not being able to run out of the room in between commercials was messing with my head.

» Two commercials gave me pause in different ways. First, the new E*TRADE baby wasn’t half as funny as the original. Second, Google aired its first ever television ad. I think.

» The Saints kicked another field goal which flew under my radar. End of the 3rd quarter. Colts – 17. Saints – 16.

4th Quarter – 8:56 PM

» Honestly, I should’ve been playing closer attention. The Saints started scoring. They took the lead. They intercepted a very important Peyton Manning pass at a crucial time. I watched the whole thing. I swear. But, as happens more than not, I became embroiled in a debate that made the game take a backseat.

» Super Bowl XLIV ended at 9:45 PM. The New Orleans Saints beat the Indianapolis Colts by the score of 31-17. If I bet the game the way I thought it would go, I would’ve been dead wrong. Yet another reason why I’m not a gambling man.

Overall, a most exhilarating football contest. The best Super Bowl in years. Congrats, New Orleans. Call me when you’re done partying. That should be around June.

quotation

Everybody gets told to write about what they know. The trouble with many of us is that at the earlier stages of life we think we know everything- or to put it more usefully, we are often unaware of the scope and structure of our ignorance.Thomas Pynchon

tune

One band from the 80s that doesn’t get enough credit is The Housemartins. I like to think of them as a sort of catchier version of  The Smiths. Also, they’ve got one of the best titled songs ever – “The People Who Grinned Themselves To Death.” Actually, after just listening to it, it seems to work nowadays as well.

gallimaufry

→ I just got done reading King of Russia: A Year in the Russian Super League, and it was simple and great. Former NHL head coach and current Phoenix Coyotes assistant coach Dave King narrates his experiences as the first ever Canadian coach in Russia. The guy really knows his stuff and he provides great insight into Russian hockey and its players, especially Pittsburgh Penguins superstar Evgeny Malkin.

→ Speaking of the Pittsburgh Penguins, yesterday afternoon’s game between them and the Washington Capitals was just about as complete as you could ask for. Caps won it in overtime 5-4 after being down 4-2 going into the third period.

04.07.09 – Tuesday

Word: defunct [di-fuhngkt] adj. 1. no longer in effect or use; not operating or functioning: a defunct law; a defunct organization 2. no longer in existence; dead; extinct: a defunct person; a defunct tribe of Indians

 

Birthday: Francis Xavier (1506), William Wordsworth (1770), Percy Faith (1908), Billie Holiday (1915), Ravi Shankar (1920), James Garner (1928), Wayne Rogers (1933), Jerry Brown (1938), Freddie Hubbard (1938), Francis Ford Coppola (1939), John Oates (1949), Janis Ian (1951), Jackie Chan (1954), Christopher Darden (1956), Russell Crowe (1964), Bill Bellamy (1965)

 

Occurrence: Today is World Health Day 2009. Click here to see where the World Health Organization is concentrating its efforts this year.

 

Standpoint: 53. That’s the number of people who have been killed by violent gunmen in the past month. Each incident is totally saddening. The most heinous one (in my opinion) occurred this past Saturday night in Pittsburgh, PA when Richard “Pop” Poplawski shot and killed three police officers from point blank range. Positively nauseating. Truly. Since the shootings and his subsequent arrest, we’ve come to know some things “Pop”. We know that he was stockpiling weapons due to the assault weapon ban proposed by President Obama. We know that he thought law enforcement was unable to protect society as a result of the current economic crisis. We know that he was discharged from the United States Marine Corps for attacking his superior. We know that he was a white supremacist who despised Obama. Lastly, we know that no one around him thought those facts were cause for alarm. His friends and family are sounding off about him like he was a normal guy who simply had a bad day. Here are a few samples: “He wasn’t a racist. He was a cool person. He thought he was losing some of his rights. He said he’d be ready if there’s ever an invasion of the United States and that he had stockpiled food and guns.” “I mean, he’s not a bad kid.” “He was just an easygoing, fun-loving guy, telling jokes.” Huh? A cool person? Not a bad kid? Easygoing, fun-loving guy? I’m confused. I live in Philadelphia, not Pittsburgh, so I’m not an expert on how people talk on the other side of Pennsylvania. When I describe a guy as “cool,” it usually means he’s a relaxed guy, not a guy who’s buying massive amounts of assault rifles online. When I say someone’s “not a bad kid,” I’m always referring to an individual who hasn’t had a standoff with the law. When I think of an “easygoing, fun-loving guy,” I don’t think of a guy who spends his time on white supremacy websites, writing angry rants on ‘the Zionist takeover of America.’” These people should be ashamed of and hold themselves partially responsible for the events of last Saturday night. (To be continued in tomorrow’s post.)

 

QuotationIf by gaining knowledge we destroy our health, we labour for a thing that will be useless in our handsJohn Locke

 

Tune: Joshua Radin is flat-out amazing. His songs have a way of making you happy about feeling miserable. Confused? Listen to “Star Mile”.

 

Link: Create Your Own Flower – Just what it says – Create your own flower.

 

Gallimaufry: Tired of sad and depressing news? Me too. Try this article about a family reunited with its dog, found after months at sea…You can’t attempt to reproduce actual US currency, but no one’s stopping you from creating your own. Communities in Boston and Detroit are printing their own money. Really…The Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame announced this year’s inductees. After I’m sure what was a long and intense deliberation, the selection committee decided to include Michael Jordan.

 

Incoming: Tomorrow – More on this past weekend’s violent events. Later this week – Your Annoying Saying contributions. Cross my heart. I promise.