Friday, December 26, 2008


i sometimes wonder about stuff. all kinds of stuff really, but mostly mindless minutia, imaginary scenarios, "what ifs" and the like.

as can be deduced from the title of this blog, i'm a big fan of jeopardy. heidi and i watch pretty religiously, and plan our evenings around that glorious half hour between 730 and 800.

sometimes i catch part of wheel of fortune as well.

in a media/culture class i took in college, the professor stated that wheel of fortune gs. the highs and lows.... brilliant!

heidi mused in her last blog about the "everyday" life of someone like vanna white. this is a marvelous point to examine. do the spouses of vanna white and pat sajak watch the show every night? how are pat's kids treated in their school and social settings? does alex watch wheel of fortune? do pat and vanna get together with their respective spouses for all-you-can-eat buffets at the golden coral? does alex get at trouble at home with his wife for always correcting her when she is wrong? (alex: "oh, i'm sorry... we were looking for the ming dynasty. alex's wife in reply: "i hate you. that's why i've been having an affair with chuck woolery for the last 22 years." alex: "right!")

most importantly, the following question must be considered: if alex and pat were to fight, who would win?

obviously, there are many factors to take into consideration here. where does this fight take place? are weapons allowed? what are the rules of conduct? what role does vanna white play?

= physical stature: pat is 62 years old and stands tall at 5'10" while alex hits a mere 5'8" and has 68 years under the belt (actual stats from the internet) advantage: sajak

= physical health: trebek suffered a minor heart attack earlier this year. sajak has a terrible fake tan. advantage: sajak

= mental toughness: trebek is much smarter than sajak. this is indisputable in all possible scenarios. advantage: trebek

= potential for crippling cheap shots that could paralyze the opponent both literally and figuratively: sajak is used to spinning the wheel, and that has to count for something. plus, depending on the rules of conduct, a viscious white on the ropes outside the ring could be a huge advantage if pat needs some help. i first thought that the clue crew would assist trebek greatly, but i'm pretty sure each one of them hates alex and secretly hopes he dies because every one of those smug little bastards thinks he/she can do a better job than alex (they can't). advantage: sajak

= crowd factor: assuming this takes place in madison square garden and there are close to 30k on hand for the event (a fair assumption) there's no chance the crowd roots for sajak. he's an absolute tool. it would be unamerican to root against trebek (wait, he's canadian, right? oh well). advantage: trebek

= craftiness: i'm pretty sure i've heard alex make reference to just about every subject ever conceived in human history, so when it comes to who is more likely to pull a completely surprising, jaw-dropping move that leaves the viewer thinking, "where did that come from? i would have never thought to try that..." advantage: trebek.

it's 3 to 3 heading into the final category...

= the role of cosmic forces (God, karma, murphy's law, buddha and nirvana, etc.,): can we live in a world where a man named pat is a champion in any forum? has pat sajak contributed anything to society as a whole? do you think God cares more about intelligence or spinning wheels? these and many other questions all point to the inevitable: advantage trebek

yeah, i fixed it so trebek would win. yeah, there is many more productive things i could have done with the last hour of my life. and yeah, there is no way that this subject should have been addressed in the first place. add to it that i just realized while doing some late research on the subject of trebek vs. sajak that one of those stupid claymation celebrity wrestling shows did this whole thing... i didn't watch the youtube video to see who won, but as you might guess, i am extremely disheartened that my work here is not original. sorry for wasting your time. happy holidays and all that.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

best/worst... lists!

with christmas and the new year literally just around the corner, the internet and magazines alike are abuzz (is that a word) with "best of/worst of" the year lists. i love these things. i love reading pitchfork's compilations of the best albums of the year and thinking to myself, "i've never heard of that... it must suck."

with the plethora of lists to occupy your time (there really are so many) i figure i should treat you, the reader, to a set of lists that i have made up of the best and worst stuff of '08. keep in mind that i have the worst memory ever. many of these entries have probably happened within the last few months because in all honesty, i can't recall most of the events of my life. so without further procrastination, here it goes (no particular order for any list):

top albums of the year (obligatory):

1. fleet foxes, sun giant - ep / self titled
2. tv on the radio, dear science
3. bon iver, for emma, forever ago
4. sigur ros, med sud i eyrum vid spilum endalaust
5. girl talk, feed the animals
6. connor oberst, self titled (i know, i was surprised too)

(this list could also be titled "the only albums i bought this year because i have become much more picky when it comes to purchasing albums and i just don't do as much as i used to," or "according to my itunes playlist count, this is the stuff i listened to the most this year")

best trips i took (and a movie reference that relates to each place included in the heading):

1. ernest goes to camp (if ernest were to represent all my jackass friends)
2. home alone (but not so much because i was there with my wife to visit my family and friends just a few weeks ago)
3. leaving las vegas (after spending a weekend there)
4. chicago hope (aka, the fugitive part II)
5. adventures in babysitting in baltimore

best tv shows i watched this year:

1. the wire
2. the office
3. dexter
4. around the horn/pti
5. army wives
6. diners, drive-ins and dives
7. the pick up artist 2 and the real world hollywood (tie)

most annoying sports stories of the year:

1. brett favre

greatest accomplishments of the year:

1. getting a dog in april and said dog still being alive today
2. proving definitively, without a doubt, that i am the master of seinfeld trivia
3. calling the tampa bay rays rise to success before the baseball season began
4. convincing my wife to drink and enjoy red wine and not just white (it makes my life much easier)
5. building a deck with my father-in-law (it won't be finished before the new year, but we've come along way and i love being able to look at something like a huge deck and say to myself, "yeah... i built that (or helped build that, whatever)").
6. i'm still married!
7. writing a blog and having my readership increase from "2" to "7." that's remarkable growth over the period of one year.

some favorite random memories:

1. teak/city view double date with pete and heather. that was a fun night
2. cream cheese salamis part I and II (camping and russ' going away bday party)
3. northside fest and the love fest kevin and i shared on a porch (i refuse to use, and disdain any such terms as "bromance" and the like)
4. wine/beer tasting with heidi at party town (several times)
5. running on the beach of the pacific ocean with my girl
6. playing 1 on 1 on 1 football in the park with kevin and russ
7. listening to mark driscoll's "the peasant princess" series on the way to work with heidi and agreeing that being married to one another is pretty sweet.
8. watching brian "let it ride" in vegas.

worst people of the year:

1. brett favre
2. hillary clinton
3. chris berman (and his crew)
4. the ups commercial guy. i just want to take that dry erase marker and write "moron" across his forehead before shoving it up his left nostril
5. mike and mike (why do i keep watching? what is wrong with me?)
6. did i mention brett favre?
7. miley cyrus (her mere existence bothers me)
8. terrel owens

best people of the year (or the people i spent most time watching/listening to):

1. bill simmons
2. tim keller/matt chandler/mark driscoll
3. ira glass
4. alex trebek
5. brad bigney

favorite repeated activities i participated in throughout the course of the year:

1. playing gin rummy with heidi and my clients
2. racquetball
3. sunday mornings at grace fellowship church
4. hanging out with the old folks at madonna manner
5. nights at one of the following: gypsy hut, norhtside tavern, the comet
6. wednesday night (or any other night) dinner parties at the braggs
7. football games at kevin's spent making fun of commercials and killing bearcats from adriaticos
8. post-dinner walking of the dogs with heidi
9. debates on heather's deck
10. waking up every single day next to a beautiful girl (sappy but true)

that's about all i have in me. i'm sure i have many more that will come to mind and i'm positive that i have left some major things out, but like i said, i don't remember anything so i can't be held responsible for what has been omitted. feel free to add/correct in the comments.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

in this economy...

while in humboldt county this past weekend (that's in california, friends), my buddy nate downey, heidi and i discussed how much fun it is to start every sentence with the phrase, "in this economy..." it's a lot of fun. a few examples:

> in this economy, writing a consistent blog is very difficult.

> in this economy, graham harrell can't buy a ticket to new york to participate in the heisman ceremonies.

> in this economy, soup is my favorite evening meal.

go ahead and incorporate it in everyday conversation. in fact, go overboard - to the point where the people around you become annoyed and disinterested in anything you have to say.

we need to actually write a blog here, so lets get to some random thoughts. in this economy, random thoughts are like chicken soup to soul (the use of + and - is to indicate whether i am in favor or opposed to each entry). (if you needed me to tell you that, then you are an idiot). (i'm fairly confident that some idiots read this blog, but refuse to name names).

- i am on an unbelievable losing streak when it comes to stepping in dog poo. i mean it. every time i take calvin out to relieve himself i find myself looking down in disgust, and then spending the next 11 minutes trying to scrape, rub, hit, lick (not really) that crap off my shoes. i have like 4 pairs of shoes sitting on the doorstep right now because i can't get all the doo-doo off. it's getting to be ridiculous.

+ heidi and i got ipod shuffles from my parents for christmas this year. i ran the past two mornings to the sounds of my favorite songs, and i can tell you that it's made my morning ritual much more enjoyable. thanks mom and dad for hooking me up. it's great! how did i go so long without this accessory? i will never run in silence again... mark my words.

- kentucky/ohio is cold. as i mentioned earlier, we spent some time in northern california last week. it was in the 50s and 60s during the day and it was awesome. i was running around in just a hoodie all weekend - didn't even bring a jacket. fantastic.

+ speaking of travel: i was pretty sick with a massive head cold on my way out there, so i decided to attack it full on with orange juice after orange juice on the plane. i was drinking that stuff down and then, lo and behold, my cold is now gone. good riddance, cold. you're not welcome here anymore. and don't come back.

- he went to jared!

+ i have worked three day weeks each of the last three weeks. i could get used to this (i have gotten used to this... next week is going to blow). i work much better on a limited schedule. 40 hour weeks are for suckers.

- somebody told me that there was an attempted assassination on barack obama today, and that this was the third such attempt. i don't know if this is true, and am too lazy to do any research, but i am opposed to assassination attempts on the mr. president-elect (side note: the person that told me this, in response to my statement that some crazy people don't like the idea of a black president, said "i don't like it either." she assured me that she would not attempt to assassinate the future president and i told her i believed this to be a wise decision).

- + calvin gets his balls cut off tomorrow. (the + is for heidi and i, while the -, obviously, is for calvin). heidi and i have discussed giving the little guy one night with a lady dog before stealing his manhood from him. this doesn't appear to really be a viable option (again, sorry calvin).

+ baseball offseason talk. i don't know what "the hot stove" is, but i love all the talk about free agents and trades. i told kevin the other night that i enjoy the offseason just as much as the actual season. i stand by that statement.

+ in this economy, playing at least 400 hundred games of gin rummy while traveling across the country is a great way to pass the time. i'm fairly confident that i beat her roughly 87% of the time (she will, of course, deny this and probably offer some sort of retort about the erroneous nature of my statistics. fair enough).

- christmas stresses me out. read kevin's thoughts on this subject, which are similar to my own. don't get me wrong, i love christmas. i love to give and receive gifts. i love family. i love tradition. i love jesus. but i just get too stressed out about buying gifts and answering that annual question, "what do you want for christmas this year?" if i had a million dollars, i would buy heidi a state-of-the-art karaoke machine. and a new car. and a bunch of other stuff. i don't have a million dollars, so she will most likely get socks (she actually asked for socks, so i can't go wrong... right?).

+ in this economy, i find myself rambling more and more.

- in this economy, you can't waste time reading random thoughts from some guy sitting on his couch in his sweats while watching espn.

Friday, November 21, 2008

the world has turned and left me here

the mcrib is back. i could talk about this at great length, but i won't.

the world has passed me by.

i used to be fresh on the scene. on the up-and-up. i used to know things. i took pride in the fact that i loved such-and-such band and you didn't even know who they were yet (and by the time you did know who were they were, i would have already moved on because i'm always one step ahead of you.)

i love pop culture. it fascinates me. but it's getting to the point where i'm the old guy in the pool with all the kids and the moms on the sidelines are surveying my every move to make sure i don't make off with their child.

why don't i just go ahead and make a list of the reasons why i feel like an old man (old men make lists, so this exercise is fitting):

+ i couldn't tell you the last new album i bought, movie i saw or book i read. i'm reading the bible right now, and that's been around for a bit

+ i don't have a facebook. i've never been on facebook. i can only imagine that facebook is just another form of myspace and i can't see the reason to have the same friends who talk about the same thing on another social networking site. i can only handle so much. speaking of myspace...

+ myspace seems strange and foreign to me. nobody leaves me comments or writes me messages, and needless to say, i don't do it for them (i'm more of a 'reply' kind of guy).

+ i haven't been to a show in i-don't-know-how-long. if i did go, i would stand in the back.

+ i am wearing the same jeans, chuck taylors, american apparel t shirts and hoodies that i bought three or four years ago. i have nothing new. nothing exciting. i bought work shirts the other day: four long sleeve, button up, striped or plaid shirts that i could wear to work each day. 5 years from now will i still be wearing skinny jeans? or will i follow in the footsteps of my father and buy kirkland jeans at costco paired with an over-sized, un-tucked shirt to hide the spare tire that sits above the belt that is fastened through last hole?

+ i hardly ever see midnight.

+ i always see 7:00 am

+ i listen to talk radio. espn or npr. i just like to hear people talk when i am driving. if it's not talk radio, then it is probably a sermon i downloaded.

+ i still don't know what is so special about a blackberry or other high-tech cellular phone device. i know how to make/receive calls and text. if you ask me, i don't need my phone to do anything else.

+ on most nights, i'd just assume stay at home, because going out just seems like a hassle.

+ i don't recover like i used to. it takes more time and more effort.

+ i think that i watch the television at a much higher volume level than i used to, but i'm not sure. it sounds about the same.

+ i don't know what celebrity or hip new artist name to insert into the "i don't even know who _______________ is" statement.

+ i've started to make jokes that sound an awful lot like the jokes my dad used to make to which i would reply (inwardly or outwardly), "that's not funny." i think these jokes are hilarious, but you probably would not.

there's much more that could be listed here, but for the sake of my sanity, i'll quit while i'm ahead. i could talk about the gray hairs that are popping up above my ears, or the hairline that i swear is receding ever-so-slightly. i could talk about how the lbs don't shed the way they used to. but i'm not going to talk about that.

in the words of weezer (again. not sure why i'm defaulting there today): "i don't want to be an old man anymore..."

you may be thinking, "justin, why do you complain so much? are you miserable?"

of course not. i'm actually extremely content. i have the best wife ever. fortunately for me, she is several years younger than me, so while i grow old and incompetent, i still get to walk around with a pretty lady on my arm. sure, i'm not as cool as i once thought i was, but i'm ok with that. i look at guys like my dad, and captain carl and they are the coolest guys i know. maybe they don't wear cool clothes, get their haircut at fantastic sams, or like any bands that formed after 1983, but that's fine. they know who they are. and that's pretty cool (suddenly this post has become some sort of after school special/public announcement/afternoon talk show. let's bring in montell to give us an inspiring message of hope. better yet, allow me to quote president-elect barak obama: 'yes we can...').

let's let weezer wrap this one up for us - "if you want to destory my sweater, pull this thread as i walk away." (it's relevant... somehow... maybe not.)

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

observations '08

the election happened yesterday. apparently this is a big deal. i have a few observations - some related and others completely off-topic.

+ people are super-excited. what would have happened if mccain actually won? what would that have looked like? it would have been like waking up on christmas morning only to find that there were no presents under the tree, and while you're at it, no tree at all. i think i read about this somewhere, i believe it was "the grinch who stole the christmas."

+ just so we're completely clear on this, john mccain would have played the part of the grinch in this scenario.

+ i voted at an elementary school yesterday morning. because of this act, i received a free tall coffee from starbucks. i later found out that because of voting laws, starbucks could not have denied me a free coffee. so why did i vote?

+ i love the latest round of glade commercials. you've either seen them or you haven't, but as a quick summary, this midlife housewife tries really hard to hide the use of glade products from her friends. sometimes she tries to pronounce it with an accent, another time she attempts to place store-bought cookies on the counter to trick her friends into thinking that the delicious smell in the air is the result of her fresh-baked goods. needless to say, she always gets caught and i suppose the message is this, "it's embarrassing to buy our product, but if you want your stuff to smell good, you should just do it."

+ andy katz (national college basketball writer for espn) played basketball with obama and his crew yesterday morning. he talked about this with every espn radio personality today. i thought about what it would be like to play basketball with the president? from katz's description of the president's play, he sounds a lot like a "chucker."

+ nebraska doesn't have a winner-take-all system in place for the electoral college. can you tell me why this is? i don't get this whole process of elections.

+ comedy central's "indecision '08:" well done mr. colbert and mr. stewart. well done.

+ am i the only one who is going to miss campaign commercials? everybody complains about their presence in life for a few weeks, but i have grown quite fond of them.

+ i know i'm not the only one (heidi has confirmed this) that voted for some people based on the commercials and signs on people's lawns. call me an uneducated-voter. call me uninformed. call me whatever you want, but that's the honest truth.

+ i hope that this is not the end of sarah palin. she's a riot. how can i get my hands on a "palin '12" bumper sticker?

+ i need to get my dog castrated. i'm serious. he is out-of-control. perhaps i can charge money for your readership of this blog. just send your check to the "chop off calvin's balls" fund c/o justin and heidi.

+ congratulations to barak obama. i'm not too sure what's going to happen or not happen, but you have to admit that it's an interesting time to be alive and that this has been a wild ride. 100k+ getting together for a rally on election night? that's just insane. how many people do you think would get together today for a george w. bush rally? i'd go. i like george. he's my favorite president since abraham lincoln.

+ speaking of lincoln, i dressed up as the 14th president for halloween and had a gay-ole time that evening. lincoln gets a lot of respect to this day from the bar-going public.

+ speaking of lincoln (part 2), i read a children's book about abe lincoln as an "animal lover" and we can thank the annual thanksgiving day tradition of a turkey pardon to honest abe. well done sir. well done.

+ looking forward to thanksgiving. one of the top 5 holidays of the calendar year.

+ trip coming up this weekend: the braggs go to the windy city. full report to come i'm sure (assuming something exciting happens (not too subtle hint to kevin to step it up and make it happen)).

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

guys and gals

i think i have alluded to this in previous blogs and conversations with others, but i have finally figured out what the difference between women and men is, and i'll give you a hint - it's not anatomy (actually it is anatomy, but that seems a bit obvious to cover in this space. that, and i was terrible at anatomy, so i'd rather not try to discuss anything related to it at length for fear of being discovered as a fraud)

the main difference between girls and guys is level of interest. guys obsess, and girls dabble.

what do you mean, justin? (and before i get going here, know that this is not meant to be offensive to any person or group of persons. i like to stereotype. it's what i do. some call that wrong, but i call it my natural tendency and a fun way to pass the time. also, none of this has anything to do with my wife, who somehow breaks many of the guy/girl rules, and that is why i love her so...)

i have met, known, been best friends with guys who are obsessed with the following things: sports, records, movies, fine wine/beer, theology, computers/gaming, technology in general, skydiving and extreme sports, classic car restoration, weight-lifting, tattoos, getting drunk, marijuana usage, literature, bicylcle riding and a bevy of other interests i don't care to mention now.

i have met, known and been married to women who are obsessed with the following things: shoes, cooking (that one is heidi), losing weight, clothes, and getting tan.

do you notice a fundamental difference here? chicks don't get obsessed with stuff. you don't meet the girl who hasn't seen the sun for three weeks because she's locked herself in her mom's basement playing 'call of duty 4' or 'world of warcraft.' girls don't walk around in public wearing jerseys of professional quarterbacks and small forwards (unless said jerseys are pink, which is awesome. (note to reader, since i assume some comment will come regarding comment about about pink jerseys being awesome on a girl, let me tell you now that this comment was made in jest)). how many times have you walked into a girl's apartment and immediately been confronted by a 13,000 record collection? how many girls walk around quoting lines from the latest judd apatow movie and go home each night to a dvd collection of over 100? ever met a girl who couldn't stop talking about her golf score? how about the day after a game 7 loss to another team... how many times does a lady call in sick to work because she "just can't get over how devastating that loss was..."

this doesn't mean that girls don't have interests. it doesn't mean that girls don't care about important things (look at the list of things i attribute to guys... not exactly the mother theresa list of things to care about). i'm also not saying that girls can't be interested in things. they can and most certainly are. but girls dabble in many interests. so many, that it's impossible to even begin to record them here. most girls have at least 4,000 pairs of shoes. how do you decide which pair to wear each day? that's crazy to me. i have worn black chuck taylors for the last 10 years, without variance. i'm obsessed. don't give me choices. i don't do well with choices.

what conclusion can we draw from this observation? i'm not too sure. i know that dudes have the ability to get along much easier than broads (wikipedia defines broad: "a woman of lesser class then a lady but higher class then a bitch." that one's for you, brian.) because chances are you share at least one obsession with every fella you meet on the street. girls have to work too hard to find common ground to start on:

girl #1 "so, what kind of shoes are those?"

girl #2 "they're vintage, you wouldn't recognize the brand."

girl #1 "oh." (why can't i get away from shoe comments when talking about females? seriously.)

on the flip side, let's ease drop on a classic dude conversation:

guy #1 "what's up man?"

guy #2 "freakin' bengals, man... 0-7."

guy #1 (excited and raising his voice) "i know man! can you even believe that. to make things worse, you've got the entire media reporting on every insignificant detail of the dallas cowboys and jay glazer reporting every time brett favre sneezes. if it weren't for the improbable rise to greatness of the tampa bay rays, i would give up all hope..."

guy #2 (interrupting due to surge of joy) "that's what happens when you live in the entertainment age. used to be that the average middle american worked hard to sustain and build a family and sunday was a singular day in the week to come together in a social context with his neighbors and family to enjoy a competition of juggernauts and gladiators. due to the cable networks complete reliance upon "new" stories to keep the average viewer returning, the typical american is innundated with mundane and mindless trivia they try to call news. that's why i dig the new tv on the radio album, dear science, so much, because i think it captures the struggle of the modern man and woman. sure, bands like deerhunter and of montreal tell a story as well, but it far less transcendent."

guy #1 (urinating on himself now). see, that's what i'm talking about. a movie like 'forgetting sarah marshall,' or 'knocked up' shows the plight of the average american man as placed in that position by society. it's funny because it's real and it's sad because it's true. we live in a world now that rewards men for being "emotional and understanding" and rejects the heroes of old; guys like stallone, seagal, willis and schwarzenegger. everything is reversed. that's why i just sit in my apartment and smoke weed while playing halo 3. neil postman had it right in "amusing ourselves to death" when he said that we are now in the entertainment age, not the information age as once thought. do you really think anybody is any smarter now than they were before the internet? the human mind can't begin to hold onto all of the info that assaults it every day. like trying to get a sip of water from the firehose... you know what i mean?"

guy #2 i get it man. you're speaking my language. what did you say your name was again? we should hang out some time. maybe drink a few pumpkin beers and play some madden or something..."

do you see the difference between guy talk and girl talk? it's so painfully obvious.

it should be noted, at this point, that i am a male. being a male, i am most certainly excluded from the female race (it's not a race, is it? gender would have worked better there). it's possible that i'm wrong on this one, but i don't think so. my wife is taking a nap right now, or i would ask her if i am right or wrong. i'm going to go ahead and be a maverick and just his "publish post" without any confirmation. (you see what it happeing here? i'm already obsessing over whether i should discuss this with a female or not before making it public! i'm my own case study. fascinating!)

dames just typically don't get into stuff the way boys do. i don't know why this is, but it just is, and that should be enough. if i were to get all "scientific method" on this i'd feel pretty good about my question of origin and background research (28 years of being a dude and being around girls is a lot of research). my hypothesis has been constructed, but i lack an experiment that will test my hypothesis. screw it, i'll just analyze data from my frivelous background research and draw a short-sighted and possibly erroneous conclusion. you are currently enjoying the communication of my results, so 5 out of 6 in the scientific method, not bad (maybe i learned something from freshman science afterall)

now, perhaps your thinking, "justin, what is it you are trying to say? something tells me that you're going to make some grand point about how guys are better than girls..."

obviously i'm not going to make that point. as a matter of fact, in honor of this election season in which nobody makes any points, and no stance is ever taken on any issue, i'm just going to make this point (in a presidential-hopeful tone):

"people of america. men and women are different. if i am elected president, i promise to uphold and promote that difference as much as i am able. unless you don't want me to uphold that difference... then i promise to make sure everythink is homogenized, because i care about the american people. unlike my opponent who doesn't like women. or men. or puppies. he is evil, and that is why you should vote for me... because i'm not evil."

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

you will not enjoy this post. i promise. it's not worth reading. if you think i am joking and trying to get your attention, you are wrong.

allow me to welcome back my trusty little apple ibook, who had been out of commission for over a month due to a charger failure and a lack of effort to secure a replacement. i couldn't see spending another $79 on a new one from apple, and all the off-brands received poor reviews. i eventually found one for pretty cheap that had minimal poor reviews... (you care).

with the return on the ibook comes a return of access to my itunes, and most importantly, my podcasts. for the past three days i have been marathoning every bill simmons podcast in my car as i drive around for work. i'm listening to football projections for week three of the nfl season and loving every minute of it. it's almost like i have travelled into the future, observed the outcomes of these games, and now get to go back to the past (present) and mock bill and cousin sal as they talk about what they suppose the outcomes of these future games to be. i have so much power, so much wisdom. if i could just call them and say, "you got it all wrong. trust me, i've been there, the patriots will lose to miami in week 4."

on another note, i preached a sermon to a lively bunch of senior citizens at madona manor today. my friend heather asked me to come once a week and hold a "non-denominational, protestant service" for all the non-catholics in the building. let me just tell you that i know nothing when it comes to the elderly. can i make jokes about bad cafeteria food and sponge baths? can i talk about death? i spoke about the subject of hope, and plan to continue this subject for several weeks, but every time i mentioned anything about death or life i felt like i was punching somebody in the kidney. i normally would fill a time of preaching with cultural references, personal experiences and well-planned analogies, but i quickly discovered that this would not fly with this crowd. a quick reference to the economic crisis brought about no reply, so i'm pretty sure these people don't really know what's going on. i'll keep trying though. next i'll try references to wheel of fortune and 'the jeffersons' reruns, with the hope that i can break through into their world. but i like old people. i get nervous around them, always have. even my own grandparents made me nervous, especially when they became sick and frail. i'm large and clumsy, and i think i have a fear that i will topple over some poor woman in the hall as she tries to scoot to the bathroom. one kind woman told me that i did a great job, but that it was too long. i love the honesty of the elderly, there's no more pulling punches when you get to that age. what you see is what you get. there's no time for pussy-footing around (what does that even mean? one of my favorite sayings of all time). so next week i'll trim down from a 40 minute presentation to a 20 minute, and hope that i can speak loudly and slowly enough that i don't lose everyone.

this thing is going nowhere. sorry, tried to write without a subject or goal in mind. i should probably just delete it, but i spent more than 6 minutes on it, and i don't waste that much time without some result. that and i feel compelled to average four posts a month on this blog. i'll be back with something worthwhile soon. i promise. (you care)

Thursday, October 2, 2008

heidi says i'm out of control

i'm sorry i only wrote two posts last month (i don't know who i am apologizing to). i try to average one a week but sometimes i just don't have anything to say. (sometimes i don't have anything to say but i write anyway)

listening to baseball is far superior to watching it on television. i love broadcaster's voices. something about listening to the game on the crackin' AM radio just makes me happy. i grew up without cable, so whenver i wanted to catch my san fran giants, it was to the radio in the garage where i would sit on this bench and listen to jon miller and mike krukow serenade angels to come down from heaven (hyperbole?) oh, and by the way, the rays are going to world series and will lose to the dodgers. i have to ride the rays (remember that i picked them as my darkhorse BEFORE the season) and they have to make it as far as the rockies did last year so that i can feel at least equal to kevin. if they win a single game in the world series then kevin owes me a pumpkin ale.

the other night i sat at a table with heidi, heather, annie and cheryle and listened to them talk about how funny ellen degeneres is. ellen degeneres is not funny. these women couldn't understand how i could possibly not be an ellen fan. simply stating that i have testicles would have been enough to settle the argument, but i insisted that there are 100 people i would rather run into on a street corner than ellen degeneres. this shouldn't be too hard. let's go

1) kelsey grammer (frasier is a great show that i am appreciating more and more recently. and i won't comment on every person, don't worry)
2-6) the cast of saved by the bell minus screech (who i have seen at a bar and was a complete tool) and mr. belding, who i also met and was the greatest human being to ever live.
7) george w. bush
8-9) bill simmons and manny ramirez at the same time.
10) alex trebek
11) bill murray (but only if i could be guaranteed that he would actually be nice to me)
12) will clark (my favorite baseball player of all time. over 170 cards in plastic sleeves located in my parents' attic supports this statement)
13) larry david
14) chuck klosterman
15) michael j fox (i'd probably say something like, "too bad you can't go back in time and change your genetic code to make sure you don't get parkinson's disease." then i'd feel really bad for making such an inappropriate comment and say something like, "i wish i could go back in time and not make that last comment.")
16-19) mark driscoll, john piper, matt chandler and tim keller (all in one room, talking about theology and stuff. i'd just sit in the corner and smile)
20) marvin lewis (later i would be charged with assault for knocking his front two teeth out with my forehead).
21) the dog whisperer guy (make my dog not crazy!)
22) conan o'brien
23) david lynch
24) wes anderson
25) dusty baker ("man, why did you give russ ortiz the game ball in game six of the 2002 world series? that was a big mistake.")
26) scott spezio (another assault charge on my record)
27) michael c. hall (who would have thought that a gay funeral director and a serial killer could be so cool?)
28) ashton kutcher
29) jim carrey (but only if he happened to be coming out of 7/11 with an oversized beverage in his hand)
30-36) paula deen, barefoot contessa, bobby flay, alton brown, guy fieri, and sandra lee (for heidi)
37-38) joe montana and jerry rice (playing catch across traffic on either side of the street)
39) phil donahue
40) garth brooks
41-44) p diddy, puff daddy, sean combs
45) a hockey player (i probably have run into lots of hockey players on the street and didn't know it because hockey is unimportant. i was going to use the name of a real hockey player, but the only one i could think of wayne gretzky and that seemed rather pointless)
46) john madden ("thanks for letting your name be used on one of the only video games of the modern era that i have ever enjoyed playing. the buffalo bills on madden 92 are unstoppable.")
47) james taylor (i'd get my picture taken with him and have him sign it for my mom)
48) chuck adomitis (see above, but for my wife)
49-50) mike and mike in the morning (i have woken up with them every morning for the last year + and though i don't really like them that much, they serve a special function in my day to day routine)
51) paul mccartney
52) chris collinsworth
53-57) band of horses (me - "hey, we used your song 'the funeral' for our wedding. thanks!" them - "we made tons of money of that song for commercials and tv soundtracks. you owe us 3,000 dollars." me - "sorry. but seriously, your music is incindiary." them - "are you really quoting 'almost famous' at us right now? you lose all listening priveleges." me - "bummer... well, see you later.")
58) matt groening ('the simpsons' deserves respect)
59) jon stewart
60) stephen colbert
61) van morrison
62) hulk hogan
63-64) robert plant and jimmy page
65) will ferrell (please make a good movie again)
66) judd apatow (thanks for freaks and geeks... and the other stuff too)
67-70) john mccain, barak obama, joe biden and sarah palin (let's settle this once and for all... on the street!)
71) the creator of street fighter (who provided me with a wonderful mental image of how the above showdown would look: sarah palin as chun li, john mccain as guile, barak obama as dhalism and joe biden as zangief)
72-98) the entire 25-man roster and manager joe maddon of the 2008 tampa bay rays who have brought me great joy by making my dark horse prediction come true. (obviously i'm running out of people to put on this list. not because it's hard to think of people i would rather meet on the street than ellen degeneres, but because i'm getting tired of this. the list is not hard to come up with. it could be anybody. that's the point. think of a name of a famous person, any famous person, and i would rather meet him/her than ellen degeneres. phil collins.))
99) phil collins
100) portia de rossi (the wife/mate/life partner/whatever of ellen degeneres. just so i could say to her, "hey, next time you see ellen, let her know that i would rather run into you and 99 other people more than her." that will get her.)

Monday, September 22, 2008

good and... not so much

over the weekend i was texting heidi while flipping some burgers for the in-laws. at one point my father-in-law looks at me and says: "you're really fast at that."

in case you missed what just happened, my father-in-law (who is a man's man - you know, guns, knives, fishing, builds and fixes stuff, loves meat, etc) complimented me on my texting ability and speed. you can imagine the pride i felt in that moment (sarcasm).

things that i'm real good at:

texting: the day i discovered t9 was one of the most revolutionary days in my lifetime. the world may never know what i could do with a blackberry or a sidekick. i can text with my right or left hand. i can text using both hands. i can text while i'm driving like it's nobody's business. i don't even have to look much of the time.

drinking liquids: whether it be a can of pbr or a big glass of water, i can drink a beverage faster than you. i am sure of this. a lot of people think they can drink a can of beer really quickly, but a lot of people have been proven wrong and put to shame. i can drink hot liquids really fast as well, but not as fast.

sleep: each night i fall asleep in less than 10 minutes. each morning i wake up to the sound of my alarm clock. throughout the course of any given night i will sleep the whole night through. i hear all these people talking - "i couldn't sleep at all last night...", "i kept waking up last night...", "i woke up this morning and couldn't go back to sleep...". i have no idea what these people are talking about. heidi wakes up at least 14 times per night to go pee (tmi?). the only reason i know this is because she tells me about it the next morning. i am good at sleeping. i wish it was my job. if it were my job, i would probably be up for a promotion.

driving: i have been in a few accidents, but none of them were my fault, and it's been a long time since it happened. i haven't received a ticket for more than two years. i have been driving a car for 12.5 years (it hurts to type that). i feel safe when i am driving, and i think my passengers do as well. i have surprisingly quick reflexes while driving (not so much outside of an automobile). i drive a stick (speaking of, how can you not know how to drive a stick? there will come a day when the security and safety of the world depends of you driving a stick-shift somewhere to complete some task that will inevitably result in the fate of the world. you're telling me that you are willing to risk the destruction of the world on you not being able to drive a manual transmission? all because you are too lazy to shift gears... automatics are for lazy, undisciplined, unthoughtful and generally evil people who don't care about anybody but themselves.)

playing dead: heidi and i play this game where she "kills me" somehow. i then lay there, playing dead, while she tries to figure out how to "bring me back to life" (examples include: finger in the ear, pushing a certain "button" on my belly, saying something ridiculous that would bring a dead person back to life). i can play dead for hours. as long as heidi doesn't cheat and tickle me (so against the rules) i suppose i can play dead for days.

predicting the tampa bay rays accent to greatness this season: magic number is two for clinching the AL east. who could have seen this coming? oh yeah, that's right - me!

things that i'm not so good at:

eating appropriate portions of food: however much food is put on my plate for a given meal, that much food will be eaten. last night we went to the red lobster for a bday dinner for the mother-in-law. endless shrimp? bad idea. i can't help it. i eat food. all these people get chipotle or thai express or something and eat half or less and then save the other half for a later meal. i can't do this. if a plate of 46hot dogs was placed in front of me, damned if i'm not going to make myself sick trying to eat them all. pizza is the worst. don't even get me started.

daily exercise regimen: heidi wakes up each day and automatically goes for a run of several miles. i wake up each morning and contemplate whether i am actually going to run or not. then i put on my shoes and start on a run. at every possible turn i consider heading home and throwing in the towel. if i have to be at work any earlier than 9 am, then chances are that i am talking myself out of a run that morning. if it's raining, too cold, too hot, my ankle hurts, my shorts are in the dryer, the shoes are on the porch and thus would be too cold to put on my feet and spiders may have taken up residence over night, i'm taking the morning off and feeling completely justified in my decision.

politics: i just don't get it. i have no idea who i'm supposed to vote for. i don't believe anybody, while at the same time, believing everything each side says. heidi's dad is really into politics and watches foxnews all the time. when he talks to me about politics i find myself thinking, "that's a great point. that is the smartest thing i have ever heard in my life. how could anybody ever think universal health care is a good idea..." i don't know. i feel like i should care, but i just don't.

wardrobe decision-making for my wife: i'm sitting on the couch, ready to go to fill-in-the-blank activity and my wife comes out of the bedroom and says, "which shoes look better, the cowboy boots or the black heels?" "which sweater should i wear, the brown one or the white one?" i never know what to say, but i make some sort of decision based on some sort of criteria in my mind. invariably, whichever choice i make verbal will lead to her choosing the opposite. "wear the black ones" is responded to with a "i think i'll wear the boots." "i don't know, the brown one?" gets a "the white one looks better." i can't win. i'm no good at this.

coming up with interesting and relevant things to talk about on this blog: i'm sorry. this whole thing was derived from my father-in-law making fun of my texting. and it has turned into this. i wish i had something interesting to write about, like organic farming, physics, antique furniture restoration, or civil war history. maybe next time.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

football? i guess...

tom brady is done for the season.

shawne merriman is done for the season.

alex smith is probably done for good.

vince young may or may not be done for good (literally).

the niners are terrible. the bengals are terrible (really, really terrible). the chargers looked alright, but the panthers looked better.

what's going on here? if you don't recognize these names, then i guess you don't really care... but guess who does care? that's right, i do. i care about men whom i will never meet. i care about men who are paid millions of dollars to play a game.

i love sports. i spend a considerable amount of time watching, reading about, listening to others talk about (sports talk radio is an obsession that i do not understand. i just love listening to people talk while i drive. i have become my dad), thinking about, talking about, and now, writing about sports.

i'm writing here without a script. without a direction, so forgive me while i search for the next thing to type(did i really just type that? i could just have easily thought to myself, without typing my thoughts as they come to me).

i will be at a wedding on saturday night. this means i will not be watching the buckeyes and trojans do their thing. this is tragic.

watching football on the west coast is way better than the east coast. wake up in the morning, eat some breakfast, and start watching football. it's awesome. watch a couple of games, run outside and play catch for an hour, and then get ready for the night game (which gets over before midnight, a novel concept).

my fantasy football team is terrible. carson palmer? braylon edwards? thanks guys. thanks for showing up last week.

i feel really sorry for alex smith. poor guy was drafted first by the niners, but in any other year he would have lasted until the second round. the niners talked themselves into the guy, and then had to give him a load of cash to try and learn how to play quarterback on the big stage. he didn't really get it. he has thrown 31 interceptions compared to only 19 touchdowns during his four years in the NFL. before breaking his shoulder last week, he had been relegated to the backup of a man named jt o'sullivan. that hurts. and now he's done. all those expectations, all those hopes, placed on a kid from utah... kids from utah are supposed to ride bikes and drink milk... not become superstar quarterbacks (is that prejudiced and a stereotype?)

i don't feel bad for vince young. i suppose i should. he's out of his damn mind. he is being booed by the fans at his home. that's like coming home from a long day at work and having your wife and kids mock your haircut, car, wardrobe and lack of ability to provide for the family. but vince young is a tool. i have never liked him (i guess the performance against USC for the national title has something to do with that).

do you understand what just happened in the last two paragraphs? i stated that i like and feel sorry for one 20-something athletic millionaire while at the same time mocking and holding disdain for another. why do i do this? why do any of us do this? why do i care about sports? why must i always make my opinion known? i respect and like people who share the same opinions and preferences as i, while lacking any regard for those who do not. i don't really understand what it is, and i'm not sure if i like it, but it's what i do, and apparently, i write about the fact that i do it. i feel like there is something that is supposed to be said here... some greater meaning or existential discovery to be made, i just can't quite put my finger on it...

i love football. i'm glad it's back.

Sunday, August 31, 2008

without the letter "J"

my computer isn't working, so i am borrowing the parent-in-laws. the letter that comes between "i" and "k" in the english alphabet is broken on the keyboard, so i might have to get creative. no "first letter of my first name" in this post. do you know how annoying it is to log onto email, blog, myspace, etc., when a prominent letter in both username and password is disabled?

+ the tampa bay rays have secured a winning record for the first time in the history of the organization. the tampa bay rays sit atop the AL east, widely acknowledged as the toughest division in baseball, with the boston red sox and new york yankees looking up and looking at their bloated salary figures wondering, "what the hell?" the tampa bay rays will make the postseason for the first time in team history. i bring all of this to your attention for the mere reason that i can say, "i told you so." that's right. i'm on record, months before the season even began as calling the tampa bay rays as my official dark horse candidate. i win.

+ i planned on writing a big-old thing about "the wire," which the lady and i just finished (season 5 - the last season), but then i stumbled upon a "stuff white people like" article, which made me feel pretty silly. i have said it before, and i will say it to every single person who allows me the chance to say it again. that show will blow your mind. i have never seen anything like it. watch it. you're an idiot if you don't.

+ last weekend the father-in-law and i went down to southern kentucky and did some fishing and camping. took the dogs, the fishing poles and a mess of fattening foods. it was a good time. neither of us had a watch, so we took timeouts from normal discussion at least 8 times a day to discuss "what time do you think it is?" normally we would look at the sun's position in the sky or attempt to gage the time based on how tired we were at night, or how hungry we were. why did we do this? not sure, but there is some strange compulsion to know what time it is. one would think it would be liberating to be free from the constraints of time, but when you're outside of it's reach, life is strange and unfamiliar.

+ so far i haven't had too much issue with this whole "not using the letter 'j' thing. i guess not many words are stuck with that cumbersome letter. let's get rid of it all together. from now on, call me 'ustin'

+ apparently donald miller and barack obama are good buddies and miller gave the convocation at the dem. nat. conv. if you know who donald miller is, then you might find this interesting. i'm getting a little caught up in this politics stuff right now. it's on par with the olympics for me. i only wish that it only happened once ever four years like the olympics. wait... that's not right.

+ kevin isn't coming to cincinnati out of protest that none of us come to visit him in chicago... nice move buddy. that will work out well for you. you missed the celebrity of russell vance on his way out town last night.

+ i don't know what it is that labor day celebrates. i assume that it has something to do with the end of the summer and some sort of harvest that allowed for farmers to take a day of rest and celebrate, but i could be wrong. we should cease all holidays, observances, and practices that are related to archaic farming traditions and habits. day light saving time? no longer necessary.

+ brandon stockman wrote a delightful running diary of the dem. nat. conv. you can check that out on the links on this page to the right.

+ i'm reading a book entitled "the complete husband" by lou priolo. again, i am made aware that i am not perfect. these reminders are good. once you realize that every fight/disagreement/misunderstanding is actually not all the fault of your wife, things become much more sensible and fun.

+ my dog calvin keep escaping from the backyard. i have tried to reinforce the fence in several areas and i keep thinking that i have finally established my brilliance/dominance over this inferior k-9, but he keeps running to the front door with a big grin on his face and his tongue hanging out the side of his mouth. i'm beginning to resent his intelligence and question my own.

+ i talked to my friend osh (first letter missing) carstensen last night. he called me from korea. for some reason, talking to someone and knowing they are in another country is way more exciting than talking to that same someone when they are in another city or another state.

+ watched four hours of season four of entourage last night. that show makes me laugh and feeds the inner "i want to be famous" sentiment that i believe all of us have. i can't tell you what happened in the show though, because nothing happens in that show. it's all fluff and that's what i like most about it.

+ did i mention that i picked the tampa bay rays are my dark horse team this year? (kevin told me that i am not propping myself nearly enough for this accomplishment and i realize that he is correct)

+ heidi is working way too much this weekend and i haven't hung out with her at all. that's dumb.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

back to school

i've been talking with a lot of kids over the past week about the most loved and most hated time of year: back to school, and it got me thinking about this all-together strange and wonderful time of year. in my younger days, i would spend all summer playing all hours of the day and into the late evening (until my mother would yell for us to come in). and then sometime toward late august the inevitable would arrive. the fun would come to an end. i would dread, yet anticipate with great excitement, the first day of school. somehow, sitting here now, years removed from my last "back to school" experience i can only long for those days of excitment and uncertainty. here's a list of things that are circling 'round in my big over-sized head:

+ back to school shopping. every year my family would visit my aunt and uncle in an unanamed large city in california and go back to school shopping. attending a small school in a small town, this experience put me miles ahead of my peers when it came to the latest fashions. entering my 7th grade year, i arrived at school sporting the following: no fear shirt, vans slip-ons, levi silvertabs a miami hurricanes hat positioned just right on my head so i could barely see the bill when i fixed my eyes upward, and a jansport backpack. none of the other kids had this stuff. they were wearing bugle boy, BUM equipment, and, if they were lucky, quicksilver, but nobody measured up to the level of cool i displayed. i give credit to my cousin travis, who, growing up in a big city, was influenced by the latest trends and passed them on to me. i was a god. add in my fresh 'bowl cut' haircut and there was no stopping me.

+ syllabi. this is one of my favorite plural words. when you get to college and the professor hands out the syllabus, there is nothing more daunting and exhillerating than perusing through the details of this document. the assignments, the required reading, the recommended reading (never touched it), the due dates, the planned professor absences that meant you could sleep in on a random tuesday... by the end of the first week you knew exactly what the next four months of your life would look like. i need a syllabus given to me quarterly so my life can make sense again.

+ the night before the first day. did you lay your clothes out on your floor the night before the big day? was your lunch already made (pb&j, doritos, oreos, granny smith apple and capri sun)? because i did. i still lay my clothes out the night before a big day (job interview, wedding, superbowl). i need more of these days in my life. more excuses to fret over what i will look like. christmas eve is the only night that compares. the jitters. the anticipation.

+ comparing summer stories. there's always the rich kids who's parents took them to disneyland or some magical out-of-state place like scottsdale, arizona. various summer camp stories. hook ups and break ups. back in the day, we didn't have cell phones or myspace so when you wrote in a classmate's yearbook on the last day of school, it was assured that you would not see him or her for a good three months unless they lived in your neighborhood. travis faulkner used to always make up stories about where he went that summer, but his mom worked at my elementary school, so we would find out pretty quickly that travis did not in fact travel to argentina that summer to hunt crocodiles and rattle snakes.

+ new television programming. summer was chock full of reruns to the point that it's not even worth watching (not that we ever wanted to anyway... we had rivers to swim in, bikes to ride and blackberries to eat). but the new school year brought season and series premieres, and the promise of football beginning and baseball concluding.

+ new teachers. new kids in school. new prospects. i geuss it's just the newness of it all. the uncertainty. how many times in your life does everything seem so new and wild with possibilities. "this year is going to be the best ever." it never lives up to the hype, but for that day, for that week, we can believe that this year is going to be different. this year is going to be the one that changes everything.

now if you excuse me, i have hours of saved by the bell and the oc to watch.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

america, the beautiful

i'm watching the games of the 29th olympiad. mens basketball game between usa and spain. i arranged my schedule today to make sure that i would be watching this game. last night i jumped off the couch and shook my fist in the air when michael phelps touched a wall 1/100 of a second faster than some croatian. i am rooting for lebron james and kobe bryant. if you don't know me, these are guys i do not root for in my day to day life. i am pissed that some of these guys are considering signing with some european team for 50 million bucks.

what is happening here? am i becoming a patriotic american? do i love USA? or have i just caught a little case of "olympic fever?"

i, like all 20-somethings, have become somewhat cynical of my allegiance to this country. it's just the way we are (young, naive, arrogant, liberal). it's considered cool to hate america these days. everybody's always talking about universal healthcare, immigration reform, and change (yes we can!).i find it hard to believe that the commander in chief is the butt of every joke. i haven't talked to a single person in like 5 years who had something nice to say about the W. is this all his fault? did little georgie get carried away with his new toys and decide that starting a GIJOE war in iraq would be a fun little thing to do? is this where it all went wrong? obviously not.

this isn't an academic/sociological/political piece, but freedom of speech/the press is to blame here. used to be, when this country went to war (wwi and ii), good ol' fashion propaganda was put into play. people didn't form their own opinions, but their opinions were shown to them on a screen and they were told what to buy and what to believe. then the media had to start showing war footage (vietnam) and people didn't like what they saw. so people started making their own opinions and all of the sudden people were burning american flags, rather than waving them with pride. (didn't i say this wasn't an academic/sociological/political piece?)

well i've fallen prey to the trends. i talk shit on the usa. i play into it. i ridicule public displays of patriotism just like you do. which got me wandering: (back to the original point of this post) am i "anti-american?" or am i "proud to be an american... (where at least i know i'm free.)" it has to go beyond rooting interests in the olympics. if only there was some quiz i could take that could tell me if i was a good american...


1) My favorite food is:

a) hamburger and fries
b) pizza
c) mexican
d) any food from another country that i haven't been to but i insist i love because other people will think i'm cooler and more sophisticated because i like it (example: sushi, thai, vegan).
e) french

my answer: a) mexican
correct answer: a, b, or c. basically as long as you didn't answer "d" you are in pretty good shape. and e is wrong too because a good american takes every opportunity to rip on the french (i dont' really know why). you might be wondering why mexican is an acceptable answer. if you have ever been to southern california, you know why. mexican food is more american than mcdonalds and burger king. we may not want you to cross our borders, but if you can cook a good carne asada burrito, then we are willing to look the other way.

2. my favorite sport is:
a) basketball, football or baseball in any order
b) hockey
c) extreme sports
d) soccer
e) i don't like sports

my answer: a) baseball, football, basketball (in that order)
correct answer: (a) basketball, football and baseball
obviously, this is the only correct answer. hockey? this is an american quiz, not canadian or russian quiz. extreme sports? what is this, 1994? are we rollerblading on the boardwalk? soccer? again, this is america. not europe.

and if you answered e) "i don't like sports," then not only are you a poor american, but a poor human being. i feel sorry for you.

3) my favorite actor is:
a) bruce willis (based on die hard alone)
b) sean connery
c) nicolas cage
d) mel gibson
e) bill paxton/bill pullman (i don't know which one is which, but i love them both)

my answer: nick cage.
correct answer: this gets complicated. nick cage is the most correct answer. nick cage is america. if this is a problem for you, just watch windtalkers. captain coreieli's mandolin is another solid choice. you don't star in national treasure (1 and 2!) without becoming captain america (movie idea... nick cage as captain america. perfect). but you could answer bruce willis. i'm ok with that. mel gibson would work as well, especially with his anti-semitic sentiments. sean connery works here too because a good american loves the 007 bond series. and the two bills... sure why not. as long as you didn't answer: george clooney (that character is always making anti-america movies. who does he think he is?), any foreign actor other than connery, or a female, then give yourself credit for this one.

4) the vehicle i drive is:
a) made in america. there ain't no other way
b) a honda or toyota
c) i ride a bike because i am trying to save the earth from pollution and gas is too expensive.
d) large. guzzles gas and has way more seats and gadgets than i need.
e) cheap. nothing else matters.

my answer: a) american-made. chevrolet and subaru. 2 for 2.
correct answer: american made is obviously the correct answer, but a honda or toyota is correct too, because, let's face it, those cars are more american than american cars these days. bike riders are in the wrong because they dont' support the economy and don't contribute to global warming (which is an american cause). large and frivolous vehicle ownership is actually wrong as well, despite popular opinion. that's just stupid. answering "cheap" here also works, simply because that's a part of the american story... (or at least my story)

5) when i go to a bar, i usually order:

a) shots!
b) whatever american microbrew they have on tap or in a bottle
c) heineken or corona
d) pbr or miller high life
e) i don't go to bars and i don't drink.

my answer: b) or d). here's the process: i walk in. see what they have to offer in "good" beers, and look at the price. if the disparity between good beer and pbr/high life is greater than twice the cost of pbr/high life, then i order the cheap stuff. but if i can swing a couple extra bucks, then i go for something good. another approach is to start with something good, savor and enjoy it, and then move to the pbr/high life option, especially if it's going to be a longer night.

correct answer: my answer is right on this one. if you have the money, then "good american microbrew" is always the correct answer. shots! is a correct answer. this is the fastest and most sure-fire way to get messed up, and as an american citizen, it is your right to over-indulge and make a fool of yourself. heineken or corona is a wrong answer. these beers are terrible and over-priced. the only people who order these beers don't really know what they are doing. obviously choice "e" is wrong, but you knew that. (if you answer wine, and you are not my wife, then you are a fool. if you answer anything "light" then i am going to punch you in the gut the next time i see you in public and see how that "light" beer is working out for you)

6) TRUE or FALSE: apple pie is the best pie ever
obviously, this is true. any other answer is just ridiculous.

7) TRUE or FALSE: "what a wonderful world" by louis armstrong is a great american song.
the correct "good american" answer here is TRUE, but i despise that song.

8) TRUE or FALSE: i want to travel the world.
FALSE. america has everything you could ever want. it's pointless to hop on a plane and fly several hours to go some place where you have to speak a different language, use a different form of money, and perhaps drive on the wrong side of the road. stay in north america. we got it all.

9) TRUE or FALSE: i watch multiple hours of television a day.
TRUE. how will you know what to buy if you aren't told by clever advertising? how will you develop your own unique identity if you don't have role models to follow on your favorite programs? what will you have to talk about with your friends if you don't watch sporting events?

10) TRUE or FALSE:
i own a shirt from old navy (preferably one that features an american flag)

hold on. i gotta run to the florence mall.

Friday, August 8, 2008

quick takes

due to the overwhelming response to my last post (three comments as compared to the normal two (does it count when the unexpected comment comes from my wife?), i am going to skip the normal one-week waiting period between blogs to bring you "quck, random, and useless thoughts." why am i going to do this? boredom.

+ my greatest fear in posting blogs so close together is that people won't read the last one i did. so if you didn't read "under pressure" - do so. it is better than what is to follow.

+ that direct tv commercial where jimmy kimmel talks about rob bironas kicking 8 field goals makes me laugh. "you missed it because you didn't have direct tv." i missed what? 8 field goals? that's like saying "i had a great dental appointment. i had 8 cavities!"

+ these are the movies i would like to watch in succession:
1) teen wolf (the story is great. once i watch it a blog entry will follow),
2) airborne (for all you west-coasters, the movie takes place in cincinnati. i pass by "devil's backbone at least twice per week and every time i go through the intersection i think to myself "awesome."),
3) the peanut butter solution (apparently only available in france and canada. can we get a US DVD release? can you remember a more disturbing movie from your childhood?)
4) and over the top (arm wrestling is the most accurate and surest way to test strength. i had a push up contest with kevin and lost (i blame pete fosco making me laugh, but it's also true that kevin would have won anyway. that being said, i have longer arms and a heavier frame to lift so, i don't necessarily believe that i am weaker than kevin. next time kevin - over the top).

+ coldplay's "a rush of blood to the head" is a really good album. i haven't listened to it in about four years (i felt like i had to hate coldplay for awhile because i thought they got too big and epic, ala U2, whom i hate. it's all about consistency here), but i put it on the other day and i thoroughly enjoyed it. X&Y is still terrible, parachutes still bores the hell out of me, and i haven't heard viva la vida so i can't say that i am a coldplay "fan." but for what it's worth, on a thursday afternoon in august "rush of blood to the head" was an enjoyable listen.

+ i have never seen titanic. i have never seen lost. when i make these statements in groups of people i get completely different reactions. how am i respected by my fellow men for never having seen the shipwreck that is titanic, yet dismissed or ridiculed for never seeing what i can only imagine is "titanic II - the survivors who made it to an island and try to survive" (unofficial title)?

+ peanut butter (creamy, of course (shut up kevin. crunchy is terrible)) and jelly is the most utilitarian and necessary food on the planet. i eat it for lunch roughly three days out of any given week. sure, i never wake up and say to myself "sweet, pb & j today" but it always comes through. the same can be said for cereal and popcorn.

+ espn radio host colin cowherd makes a lot of sense sometimes. he's a bit of an arrogant jerk, but very often he just gets it right. listening to him talk about how bummed brett favre is today now that he is a new york jet (and the reasons for this) was right on. i hope brett favre cries himself to sleep each night wrapped up in his gigantic green bay packers fleece blanket every night with a half-empty bottle of prescription anti-depressants in hand (too soon?).

+ the big bang theory just doesn't make much sense. why is this the "best" that the scientific community can come up with? why is it universally held as the the explanation for why we exist? this is the best we can come up with? ask a third grader to tell you how they think the universe came into existence. chances are you will be more impressed with the answer.

+ if cars could run on perspiration i would be able to drive from coast to coast without a second thought. back sweat sucks. but you didn't want to hear that.

+ pop candy is a great website (link is on my page under people i like/don't like). i check it everyday. i am genuinely intrigued by pop culture minutia and she does all the work for me. i don't really like comic books, but i can scroll right past those points. whitney is on vacation this week, and i miss her telling me what i should want to know about each day.

+ everybody was right. the dark night is awesome. christian bale should not have tried to make his voice so deep. that was a bit much. i was genuinely sad for the passing of heath ledger while watching that film. he did a bang-up job.

+ i could go on like this forever. i am literally sitting on my couch, staring at the wall and trying to think of the next bullet point. it's enough already.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

under pressure

since this blog is titled 'this is jeopardy' in reference to my favorite television program, i share this simple caveat (there you go, kevin) - last night i saw something i have never seen before: it's TOC (tournament of champions for you non-jeopardians, aka simpletons/morons) and last night two people tied for the lead. do you know what happens when there is a tie on jeopardy TOC? that's right - sudden death. one clue. first to ring in takes all. that's pretty bad-ass. that's what i call pressure.

speaking of pressure (i love segues), i don't do well under it (pressure, that is). i went camping this weekend with the lady and some friends. you know what happened even if you weren't there - cheap beers, grilled food, swimming, all-around silliness. cornhole was played in excess (for you west coast readers, cornhole is like horseshoes - but played with beanbags and a wooden board with a large hole in it). now i'm pretty good at cornhole. it is widely accepted that i have the best form/technique, and i get the bag on the board at a relatively high frequency. but here's what happens every time - i come up short on my final throw when it really matters. do you know how frustrating this is? i collapse under pressure.

so here it is. my list of shame. the moments of my life under pressure (in chronological order)

pinewood derby: i was a boyscout. every year this pinewood derby took place. each scout would get a kit and make a little car that would roll down a large wooden slope. this particular year my dad and i went to great lengths to make a superior car. we drilled holes in the front of the frame and inserted fishing weights to make the car heavier, and thus faster down the hill. when the time came for me to set the wheels in motion, i hesitated and lost out to chris kelly and his inferior car. second place.

spelling bee: i used to be a very good speller. spell check and general laziness over the years has dramatically corroded these skills. but during my fifth grade year i was a finalist in the eel river valley spelling bee. the top prize - a gift certificate to Kmart, county-wide acclaim and a date with my choice of any of the female contestants. the word i was required to spell - "ubiquitous." come on. this isn't even fair.

freshman girls: i came from a very small elementary school. 100 kids, grades K-8. when i went to high school the female options became much more enticing. i had a different look and a different style back in those days, but that's another story. during the first few weeks of school, while learning to open my locker and still carrying around grocery bag-covered text books, i found myself the object of affection of four different girls. each girl had something different to offer. one was really hot. one was super nice and easy to talk to on the phone. one was a year older and was weeks from getting her driver's license. the last was something else i can't remember. i danced around for weeks. talking to each girl in between classes and at night on the phone. i agonized over which girl i would chose to date. i couldn't make a decision. so the decision was made for me. two of the girls found out about my polygamous methods and immediately rejected me. the other two found out shortly after and i was left alone. back to throwing pennies into a cup behind the science building with my jackass friends during lunch.

senior talent show: me and some friends were all set to perform a rousing rendition of cake's rousing rendetion of "i will survive." i listened to, and sang along with a lot of cake in those days so i was all set to sing the lead. the night before the first night of this prestigious event, i backed out. i couldn't do it. i'm not a singer. i ended up playing the kazoo in lieu of the trumpet part, simply because my friends felt like i should do something.

the great apartment fire: while living in orange county i was sharing a two bedroom apartment with three other guys. OJ (other josh) was out of town that night, and when the rain started to come down heavy (it does rain in southern california, i promise) OJ's window was left open to allow the water to run down the wall, and collide with the elecrical outlet tucked behind his empty bed. the bed caught on fire. brent came running into josh and my room and pronounced, "there's a fire." in my boxer briefs and sleep-induced stupor, i ran outside and began to dip a plastic dixie cup into the standing water in attempt to throw water into the open window and put out the fire. with water up to my ankles and a heavy heart, i realized that day that i would never fulfill my childhood dream of becoming a fireman.

men's softball league: three or four years ago, while living in orange county, i played on a church softball team. it was a good time. me and a bunch of friends going out each friday night and playing some competitive softball. problem was, we were terrible. during one particularly memorable game, we were being pounded by the opposition. this was nothing out of the ordinary. but on this particular night, during the final inning, we made a comeback. i acutally batted twice that inning. roped an RBI double the first time up. but the second time up read like a bad 'no fear' shirt: bases loaded. bottom of the however-many-innings-there-are-in-a-softball-game. two outs. down by three. it may have been a full count, but probably not. i stepped into the batting box, waited for the pitch... slow dribbling grounder to the pitcher. game over.

marriage: heidi's dad offered to take me out to dinner that night. i knew it was a perfect chance to ask for his daughter's hand in marriage. while eating a greasy burger from "longhorn steak house" i went over the question in my mind hundreds of times: "can i marry your daughter?" i think he sensed my fear and intrepidation and eventually put me out of my misery saying to me in a calm tone, "when are you going to marry heidi? you guys should get married. maybe this summer." granted, things worked out pretty well, but still.

cornhole: during last year's camping trip, billy and i were on a roll. kevin and shorty were struggling. kevin proclaims with his usual arrogant tone, that they will win the next three straight, and take the cornhole championship. like the yankees in the '04 ALCS, billy and i folded like a house of cards (don't really know what that means). again, i played pretty well, but when the game was there to be taken, i came up short.

conclusion: why am i like this? has my life been defined by the failures when faced with immense pressure? i can only blame my parents. they must have done something wrong. my dad should have been one of the asshole dads who yell at their kids and say things like "you gotta win state. i did. make your family proud." i guess i have nobody to blame but myself. the next opportunity that comes my way is going to be different. i will not come up short. i will get that beanbag on the board. i might even sink a cornhole to win the match.

Saturday, July 26, 2008


have you ever watched the lifetime channel? it's not a habit by any means... but here i am on a saturday afternoon watching the second movie with a two-word title that tells you exactly what will happen in the movie. up first was "fatal desire." heidi was with me when we started this one. then she left. for some reason i continued to watch. here's the plot. some lonely housewife and mother of one likes to go on internet chat rooms and meats some pit boss from the jersey shore. they fall in love. she lies and tells him that she is pregnant with his kid and that her husband beats her and convinces this poor schmuck to kill her husband. once he gets wise to all of this, his only option is to kill himself.

couple of "highlights" about this one: 1) dude named his penis "george," because, "he's curious." that's a direct quote from the movie. 2) internet chatrooms. who goes to these? i have never been in an internet chatroom and i can see no circumstance in which i would ever do it. i don't even know where to find chatrooms. apparently though they are the "singles bar of the new millenium." 3) extramarrital affairs are never a good idea (i'm going to regrain from a long dirge about this one. just know that this is pretty simple and pretty obvious as far as i can see). 4) ann heche is a strange lady. i think she's confused about a lot of things, like why she ever agreed to do this movie.

up next on this double header is another winner - "ultimate deception" (what is it with these two-word titles that are so blatantly contrived? are people flipping through the tv guide and thinking to themselves, "illustrius contempt... that sounds good." who's watching this stuff... oh yeah, women).

i can't go through with this one. i contemplated a running diary. but i don't have the energy. yasmine bleeth... welcome back to the limelight. we missed you. so far this couple is trying to have a kid but they can't so they are talking about adoption. boring. where's the "ultimate?" where's the "deception?" i don't have the patience of the strength to go through with this.

i don't understand women at all. across this country there are thousands of women who watch this garbage all of the time. it's afterschool specials for the unhappy, middle age, soccer mom. the writers, producers and directors are getting together around big round tables and saying, "let's make this movie that will drive the bored and discontent women with too much time on their hands crazy. but let's make it moral and worthwhile." it's almost like, "you think your life is bad... don't try such and such a scenario to make it better." sure, things look good for awhile. but the dude is always some sleaze. the shit always hits the proverbial fan. someone ends up dead, and it all could have been avoided if the heroine just didn't get so carried away in her quest for a little extra excitement in her otherwise mundane life. and while you're at it ladies, make sure you eat some food. eating disorders are never as fun as they sound.

this just in. our little movie "ultimate deception" is about to get interesting. pretty sure the dude is about to steal a baby from some unsuspecting woman in a parking garage. he's not the perfect man that he was originally portrayed to be. i'm shocked. and why is he going to make this poor decision? what drives a man to kill the husband of some chick he met online? what makes a clean-cut coast guard steal another woman''s baby? women (heidi excluded, of course). they're trouble, man. find a good one and treat her really well. don't be a fool.

the pattern i am starting to notice here is that people get all caught up in something (usually a terrible romance. complete with soft light love scenes that show tussled hair and strange massaging of the back all to a synthesizer sound track that was recorded by a freshman music major at some middle of the road conservative college in omaha, nebraska). then someone gets desperate, jealous, possessive, angry, deceptive, compulsive, paranoid, etc. and everything falls apart. who are we supposed to feel sorry for in these stories. everyone is an idiot. i got no one to root for. earlier in the day i was watching rio bravo with john wayne, dean martin and ricky nelson. now here's a movie i can get behind. not one, but three people that i can pull for. it's brilliant (perhaps a "greatest westerns of all time" post is in order).

are we done here? that's enough already.

Friday, July 18, 2008

obligatory brett favre reaction blog

brett favre thinks he deserves something. i guess we all do.

i don't know about this. i have all sorts of anger toward brett favre. i'm not too sure why, but i loathe him (although perhaps not as much as my friend kevin - read his blog for a passionate brett favre treatment). if you care about sports and this whole story, then you have heard it all, and you have your opinion. if you don't follow sports (i probably don't know or like you... unless you are my wife, in which case cooking and singing christmas carol karaoke more than make up for it. [on a side note (within my side note) girls who get way into sports... i don't know man, it just seems weird to me. if heidi got as charged up about sports as i do - it would just be to weird]), then you don't care.

here's my quick take on the situation: whenever somebody thinks that they "deserve" something, or even have "earned" something, then you begin to tread upon dangerous waters. this notion that we deserve anything is completely fantasy. just because you pay your taxes, eat pretty healthy and don't cheat on your wife, you start to think that everything in life should go your way. really? when has this ever happened? if you read the Bible (and i suggest you do, it's worth a look) you will soon find a disturbing pattern: rain falls on the "good" guys and the "bad" guys. in fact, it usually seems like the "good" guys are getting wetter than the "bad" guys. everybody always talks about how brett favre is a "good" guy. why is this? because he wears wranglers and doesn't shave everyday? because he shows up to work and does his best everyday? somehow, through all of this he has "earned" the right to go back on his word, demand that entire organizations cater to his every whimsical desire, no matter how many times it may change?

this notion of earning/deserving anything just pisses me off. in your life time, you or someone you love will get cancer. you're going to lose your job. you're going to get in a car accident. dog's going to die. mom and dad too. entire countries will be decimated by earthquakes, tornados and hurricanes. evil dictators will kill innocent children. you will stub your toe on the way to the bathroom in the middle of the night. what is it that we think we deserve? health, wealth and happiness. anytime any of these things are taken from us, or are failed to deliver on our terms, the tendency is to grumble and complain. "i don't deserve this." "what did i do to deserve this?" etc.

couple points:

1) we live in a bad place. we are bad people. sure, some of us act better than others, but when it comes down to it, we all do terrible things because we all were born with a self-centered bent that makes us do bad things. it's who we are. it's your identity. deal with it.

2) not all bad things are really bad things. or if they are bad things, they can be redeemed and actually become good things. you know this is true if you have experienced it.

3) it's not all hopeless. it really isn't. that's not my intention in all of this. remember, i started simply by stating that i can't stand the arrogance of people who throw tantrums because they aren't given what they think they deserve on a silver platter (the tirades and rabbit trails come free of charge). there is true beauty in this world. there is genuine love and conern for one another. there are moments of unexpected generosity and selflessness. these moments should be savored. strived for.

4) Jesus Christ is the answer. what is the question you ask? the difference between good and bad. the very definition of good and bad. it's found in Jesus. you don't deserve anything. in fact, if you believe in karma or something like that, when you really start counting up the stuff you do and the motivations behind it, you start to see that you shouldn't be expecting too much good to be coming 'round the corner. it's not like that with jesus. i'm not going to get too "preachy" here (too late?) but i guess it's enough to say that continually i am impressed and transformed by the person and work of Jesus Christ and the way in which all of life finds its meaning in Him alone.

stay retired brett favre. leave the world alone.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

independence and stuff.

for years now, i have maintained that christmas and thanksgiving were the only holidays worth getting excited about. every other holiday had abandoned me. built up in hype, leaving me disappointed and let down. new years eve, valentines day, halloween, and until the last two years, the fourth of july.

it wasn't always this way. growing up, in the rural town of carlotta (population 345), the fourth of july was an extraordinary event. shirley johnson, owner of martin and shirley's market (the only market in town) would host a fourth of july extravaganza. big potluck. lots of people, volleyball, horseshoes, great illegal fireworks, and the entire community coming together to enjoy a celebration of epic proportions. the entire thing was put together by the volunteer fire department - a group of "good ol' boys" that loved to drink some beer and light some fireworks. (an observation about growing up: phase one - adults are drinking beer and getting drunk, but you are completely oblivious because playing guns in the street is the only thing that matters. phase two - an awareness that the adults are acting different. the same men walk around with a budweiser in a cousy and become more beligerent and rambunctious throught the evening. in this phase, it seems strange. it seems wrong. DARE told me about this, and i should stay away. phase three: you and your friends are sneaking beers from the cooler and drinking them in the woods where no adults can see you. this is rather easy since the adults are drunk themselves, and don't really notice too much going on. phase four - i'm the adult now. i've got the beer in my hand. i'm getting a little more talkative and loud throughout the course of the evening.)

the celebration of my youth eventually ceased. and for approximately 10 years the fourth of july was no good. everybody would get all excited, but nothing would ever happen worth mentioning. so i cast if off. "you're dead to me fourth of july. i thank you for the three day weekend, but you let me down."

last year was my first fourth of july in kentucky. the foruth of july is taken pretty serious here in florence, kentucky. a quick drive across state lines in indiana offers one the opportunity to buy a plethora of booming and noisy explosives. standing in my driveway the last two years, i am in awe of the 360 degree spectacle of explosions in the sky that lasts for hours. everybody puts on a display. and it's great.

so in honor of the year of this great country's freedom from the tyranny of brittain, i offer 1776 reasons why the fourth of july is a great holidy:

1. it's the ultimate celebration of summer. summer is the best season (you're right kevin). right in the middle of summer we have a reason to get together with family and friends, and enjoy the greatness of the season.

2. fireworks are great. i love ligthing off bottlerockets. i love crooking my neck toward the sky and observing bright lights and thunderous booms. i love the fact that the universal response to fireworks is "ooh" and "aah." what else provokes this response?

3. cook outs. i love to grill. if i could grill every meal of every day for the rest of my life, you would not here any complaint. last night i did up some shrimp, chicken, beef sausages, and corn on the cob. my grandfather was a master griller. my father is a man of great talent (he only uses charcoal. refuses to switch over to gas. i love this.) get me in front of a grill. tongs in one hand and a cold oat soda in the other. that's where i belong.

4. northside fest. this only applies to cincinnati residents. but attending this festival the past two years has been a true delight. it's a tailgate party of boisterous proportions (without the tailgates). good friends all gathering together and talking about stuff. you can't beat that.

5. the fourth of july, since it falls three days before my anniversay, will always bring to mind the fond memories of last year. a time when all my friends and family were in town, preparing for what is widely considered the greatest wedding ever. i am going to celebrate the fourth of july to my anniversary in a hannukah-type celebration from here on out. i will call it: fourth-a-versary.

6. watching heidi light off fireworks. i was scared to death, since last year she somehow almost blew her hand off with a firecracker, but watching her take the lighter and set flame to that little wick is just a nice simple delight. she looked good doing it (she always looks good).

7. patriotism. i generally am annoyed at blatant xenophobia, propoganda and flag-waving. but on this one day, i make an exception. cue up the star spangled banner. drape a flag over your shoulders like a heavy weight boxer. order freedom fries with your burger. say things like "that's what makes this country great" in reference to things like sales on natural ice and ground beef. wear the attitude of "don't mess with 'merica" - you've earned it.

that's all i got. perhaps 1776 reasons was a bit too ambitious. feel free to add to the list in a comment.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

shot at love.

tuesday night ended up with my lady and me sitting on the couch, watching the season finale of "a shot at love with tila tequila II" on mtv.

i guess nothing more needs to be said.

but i'm bored and it was all too good to just let go without some passing, and of course, scathing comments about the little lady...

like i said, it's the season finale. picture this little asian girl with terrible tattoos, standing on some elaborate blue and pink stage with massive phallic stuctures surrounding her, as two people, one man and one woman, come to her, one at a time, in order to find out if they get a plastic key, and if they get to hear those magical words that every kid grows up longing to hear: "your still have a shot at love... are you interested?" (i guess they have to allude to her last name of "tequila" by making her use the "shot at love" line each week. something tells me her real name isn't tequila. but i could be wrong. perhaps there is a wonderful tequila family out there. living in des moines, iowa. her dad's a mechanic and he own's his own part store, called "jose's shot shop" (his first name has to be jose (middle name cuervo) and he has to include a reference to alcohol in his business name... it's just the way it has to be.) and her mom's a homemaker, taking care of the 14 other tequila kids, who are less famous than their popstar sister, but nobody knows why (seriously, who is this girl, why is she famous, and why did i watch her stupid show?)).

so we have this guy and this girl who have competed for tila's love by performing weekly ridiculous and degrading sexual innuendo-laden trashy feats to earn favor with this little dwarf of a girl. and the two are really in love with tila. you can tell in the way they say "i love her, i have never loved anybody like this, i will make her happy forever," etc.

first up is the guy. some football coach from ohio, (who earlier in the season had his jaw broken by another dude in what is seriously the best punch i have ever seen landed in my entire life). guy gets shot down by tila. he's heartbroken. he's almost in tears. he doesn't understand. and he drops his head in shame and exits.

next up is the bisexual girl, who admits in the limo ride to this meeting that she is confused and questioning her sexuality (isn't that just the definition of a bisexual? is this really surprising?) tila offers her the key, and the girl stands there and says "nope." tila gets pissed and loses it. accusing this girl of leading her on and bringing her great shame, which is most likely true.

the aftermath is this: tila sobbing in her female-variated austin powers room, crying, "why did this happen again. what am i doing wrong? i just don't know what else i can do."

seriously? "what am i doing wrong?" is this the real question this girl is asking? not only has every reality love competition romance gone up in flames, but you have the unique advantage (?) of having gone through this before. you honestly don't know why this keeps happening to you? maybe because you get two dozen horny people together, get them drunk and judge them based on their swimwear presentation and the nice things they say to you in 20-minute dates. you expect true love from this? i'm torn between feeling truly sorry for this girl, who has spent her life performing and being abused by mtv, thinking that she can somehow "fame" her way to happiness, and being completely pissed-angry and ready to ridicule her for being a tyrannical tramp. i'm leaning toward the latter, but then i realize that there are people in this world who don't know the first thing about love because they don't know the first thing about themselves. it's tragic really. a world full of people who think they are good. that they deserve something. that they are owed all good things because they are "good" people. nobody is good. you don't deserve a thing. you and i are depraved people who, if we got what we deserved in this life, would never smile again.

tila tequila is a sad little girl. and i feel sorry for her. maybe someday she will find a good christian man who will love, cherish, honor and respect her. and she will live happily ever after... i wonder if she would change her name?