Tuesday, February 28, 2006

I ain't saying she a gold-digger...

Anna Nicole Smith went before the Supreme Court today. God help us all. And somebody please keep an eye on Clarence Thomas.

Monday, February 27, 2006

ESPN to unveil ESPN Duke

OK, they're actually calling it ESPN Full Circle but the net effect is the same. Saturday's UNC-Duke game will be aired normally on ESPN, from an "above the rim" cam on ESPN2, and a view of the Cameron Crazies will be on ESPNU. Not to mention the game will be played on ESPN360 and live chats will be held during the game on ESPN.com.

That's it for during the game. But don't fear, there will be pre and postgame shows featuring the rivalry on ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU, ESPN News, and ESPN Classic. Included in these shows are several classic Duke-UNC games, TWO different shows live in Durham at the same time, a documentary on the Crazies, three specials on different aspects on the rivalry, and a conversation with Coach K. And I haven't even gotten to the website, mobile phone service, and magazine features.

I'm surprised that Disney/ABC/ESPN hasn't tried to purchase several other networks to include a Dukie V Cam, Coach K cam, Coach K's wife cam, Coach K replay cam, and a 24 hour Coach K commercial channel. Why stop halfway and pretend that you have any objectivity when you clearly don't? Maybe an adult channel featuring some of the more intimate moments between Vitale and coach K? A channel devoted to over-priviledged Duke students explaining why they are better than you? The possibilities are endless.

ESPN: The Worldwide Leader in Duke Basketball

Twins born with different skin colors

Twin girls in the UK were born with dramatically different skin colors. Both parents were half-black and half-white and the girls each had a unique egg but in a genetic anomaly the "black" genes were isolated in one sperm-egg combo and the "white" genes were isolated in the other leading to two twin girls that look very little alike.

The article states that skin color is essentially determined by seven genes and the chances of the "white" and "black" genes segregating and forming with two like gametes are around 1 million to one.

To me it really shows why "race" is a concept rejected by most evolutionary biologists, at least as far as in the terms commonly associated with it ("white", "black", "asian", etc.). The actual differences are so small and arbitrary as to render them mostly useless in trying to categorize humans. In fact, somewhat counterintuitively, humans are much less genetically diverse than most other mammals and only 5-15% of these differences are among groups identified by continents (what would typically be referred to as "race"). One of the main exceptions is skin color in which 90% of the variation occurs between groups.

The biggest cause of this difference has been selective pressure placed by geography. Humans living near the equator had selective forces toward darker skin colors that prevented problems associated with sunburns such as skin cancer while those living in areas away from the equator had an advantage with lighter skin that could absorb more vitamin D and prevent certain diseases.

Anyway, I sort of went off on a tangent and there are important issues in biomedicine where a person's ancestry is an important factor so it's not the best idea to totally reject different classifications of a population or subpopulation.

Sunday, February 26, 2006

Hitting the links

White House had prior knowledge of Cheney threat from a memo entitled "Cheney Determined to Shoot Old Man in Face."

Some hack at Time compares Cheney's television interview on the shooting to the "Thousand Yard Stare" of Vietnam vets. Interesting considering Cheney got five deferments during Vietnam. But, I'm sure it's totally the same thing, I guess. It's tough to read without triggering a gag reflex as this guy goes on and on about the emotional trauma Cheney faced. Yeah, he was so traumatized he went back to the ranch, hit the liquor cabinet, and ate a fancy dinner.

Charles Pierce responds:
Does anybody edit these clowns? I mean, seriously, does anybody read this over at the copy desk and think,"Jeebus Christmas, Klein must be on freaking acid to make this comparison. Should we alert the authorities? In any case, these are pretty plainly the rantings of a man gone, as the late George V. Higgins would have put it, as soft as church music. We can't publish this. It will make him look bad. Let's pretend we lost it in the system and maybe he'll forget and send us something about health care or Iraq. Why didn't I take that job at Home And Garden when I had the chance?"

I have worked full-time for three magazines in my life. I have freelanced for a half-dozen more. I am telling you now that, if I had ever handed in a piece of fanciful mock clairvoyance like this -- if I had said, for example, that, by striking out in a crucial situation, Nomar Garciaparra must now be humbled and know how Lee felt when he sent Pickett across the pastures -- there isn't a single editor for whom I ever wrote that wouldn't have poured himself a martini as big as a horse's leg and laughed himself out onto 57th Street. If I always wrote like that, I'd be driving a crosstown bus by now.

Haha, just when I thought Indiana couldn't hire a worse coach than Steve Alford I read about an article mentioning Isiah Thomas as a candidate. Brilliant. Hire the man that has been mocked openly for every non-playing basketball job he's ever taken. Let's see, has he failed as Coach of Pacers? Check. Owner of CBA? Check. GM of Knicks? Check. But, hey, he played for Bob Knight soooo, why not? Sometimes I wonder if some IU fans would rather not win as long as Knight could still coach them.

Earlier rumors that Vince Young scored a six on the Wonderlic may not be true. The scores are being retabulated due to a potential scoring error but if it is, in fact, correct would be tied for the lowest score a by a QB ever and only two higher than the lowest score ever, held by Iowa State's own Darren Davis.

This little nugget reminded me of my own Darren Davis story. There, I am, a little freshmen from small town Kansas, home of like four black people, maybe? I'm headed back up the elevator from Ground with Jeremy and Davis and two other football players get on at Main. Davis looked about as thug as you could get with his capped teeth and all that plus he was kind of a big deal back then. People knew him.

The elevator starts to stop on four and he says, "yo, whoever gettin off on fo' gonna get their fuckin ass kicked." I kind of laugh and say, "yeah, that's me, excuse me" and walk past them. They start yelling and shit and I'm still laughing as I look back to see Darren Davis yelling "suck my dick, spikey!" as he points to his crotch. Good times. Not a smart dude but he could run the football.

Speaking of Iowa State, including the exhibition loss the basketball team is 1-10 on Saturdays. Umm, what? They also have six home losses. Hilton Magic just ain't what it used to be when we were there. Also, after losing to Baylor by 18 the team is officially, officially terrible. I declared them officially terrible after losing to Nebraska at home but this really seals the deal.

Friday, February 24, 2006

Fox News: No soul or just a black one?

This is almost beyond parody now. I mean, they're actually considering advocating an all-out civil war! How can you possibly top that? I would say you can't but they've managed to blast right through every floor I've ever set for them.

I'm off to work now but I have a few ideas for a later post about this issue...

Things I could really do without

I'm flipping through the paper at work today and come across a story detailing a feud between Donald Trump and Martha Stewart. What? Are you serious? Apparently they're sniping at each other over her blaming him for her Apprentice show tanking and he called her a liar and then dropped a bomb about illegal stock trading. Whatever. Biggie and Tupac this is not. Both of them are total wastes of human flesh in my eyes.

So, the next story I come across was...just a second, I can barely bring myself to type the words. OK, it's a sex tape featuring Kid Rock, Scott Stapp, and four women. There I said it.

Everyone finished vomiting yet? Good.

I'm so dumbfounded I don't even know where to start. First, how did this happen? Why did this happen? Were they getting wasted together when Kid turns to Scottie and says, "Dude, we totally should get some groupies and do 'em together."
"yeah, yeah, great idea man. And let's FILM IT!"

OK, and you know that when Stapp was about to start he said "Kid Rock, I am ready for the orgy."

Second, who wants to see this thing? I mean Pamela Anderson, Paris Hilton, I can see those. Those make sense. Who wants to see a couple of skeezes like Kid Rock and Scott Stapp get down with four women together? Ugh, not me and I'm going out on a limb to say not anyone I know either. What a horrible, horrible thing. Horrible.

However, part of me is kind of amused because I actually knew people that would respond with "but they're a Christian band" when I would rip on them. Yeah, just because you write ambiguously spiritual lyrics to songs that all sound the same does not mean I should like you or think that you are, in fact, a Christian. Go get wasted to the point of being booed off stage (which really should have happened at your sober concerts as well) and getting in fights with other bands and making orgy sex tapes. And most importantly, end your "solo career".

So, two absolutely brutal stories in a row were on their way to destroying my faith in humanity when I come across the story of Samuel L. Jackson's new movie. Or, more accurately, the buzz it is building just by the title and plot alone.

This is quoting directly from imdb.com:
Snakes on a Plane
On board a flight over the Pacific Ocean, an assassin, bent on killing a passenger who's a witness in protective custody, let loose a crate full of deadly snakes.

Holy shit. This will could be totally awesome or the worst idea for a movie ever. My money's on both!

"Damn, these fucking FAA regulations are making it so hard to kill somebody on a place. No guns, no knives, no boxcutters, no shoe bombs. I know! Deadly snakes! It's perfection lies in its absurdity."

Every time I think about this movie I seriously start laughing. I mean, the concept is so ludicrous that it's almost the perfect movie. And then to cast Samuel L. Jackson????

"Say hiss one more time, motha fucka!"

I'm almost trembling with excitement over the potential unintentional comedy goldmine this thing will be.

Thursday, February 23, 2006

Become a Republican!

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

It's a setup!

I just answered a call from work during my normal hours telling me that cell phone usage during work hours is prohibited. Good thing I'm off tonight, I guess.


Dick Cheney! Oh no!

Brokeback Mountain in Lego form.

Duck Hunt! (and other NES games)

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

So, this guy's not sick or anything

An Iowa man stands accused of kidnapping his wife and a couple counts of child pornography. His wife turned over a "Contract of Wifely Expectations" he tried to make her sign before the wedding. She declined to sign but decided to marry him anyway, because, she didn't sign the contract so he can't be an obsessive, sick, controlling dude, right? Well, probably not.

The contract attempted to dictate what she wore, how often she was to shave her pubic hair, what sexual activities were appropriate, and pretty much everything.

WARNING! This next section is pretty disgusting. I recommend that no one read it.

You really should read the whole thing but a few highlights her pubic hair can be no bigger than 2 square inches and less than a third of an inch long. Blowjobs must last at least 5 minutes and her birthday present to him was to be a new sex toy for them to play with. Her birthday present was a GBD (Good Behavior Day) that allowed her to refuse one of his requests. She could earn 14 GBDs by initiating unexpected anal sex. However, if she refuses a request due to pain she loses three times the number of GBDs and will be tied to the bed and forced to be his sex slave until she lets him do what she wouldn't before.

I mean, this guy is seriously messed up. I just can't figure out why should would marry him and not cut off his balls right when he gave this to her.

Monday, February 20, 2006

I have to give the girl in front of me in class props for using her time wisely. Not only was she taking notes on the lecture but she was attempting to negotiate a drug deal through text messages.

BAC Power Rankings

Earlier this week it was released that Eddie Sutton's bloodwork came back with a BAC of a whopping .22. That's pretty wasted but it wasn't enough to crack the top 15 in the power rankings of athlete's BACs. Some notable members include former Bears' QB Jim McMahon blowing a .261 to come in at #8. When asked to perform a sobriety test he told the police officer "I'm too drunk. You got me."

Coming in at #15 is former Hawkeye and Chief Ed Podolak. He blew a .23 after being found passed out on the Ped Mall. I've done my fair share of drinking in Iowa City but even I never passed out there.

A high school football coach blew a .25 about an hour and a half after his game ended.

The wife of Arvyds Sabonis blew a .26 on her way to pick up her kids from school but she's Russian so I'm not sure if it counts.

A Detroit Tigers broadcaster broke the .3 barrier twice in seperate driving incidents. He blew a .35 once, was bailed out of jail, and blew a .24 when he got pulled over again. He has six total and three of the top 15.

Then, one of my personal favorites is Charles Woodson getting arrested leaving his own charity gold tournament.

All great example about why many athletes should not be role models. Or for some of you, why they should.

Sunday, February 19, 2006

Horn Broken, Watch for Finger

Until today that phrase was only a marginally amusing bumper sticker. Until today.

The scene is a Sunday afternoon in Omaha, Nebraska. I was returning from Bennett's annual birthday celebration and not looking forward to the upcoming drive. Up ahead of me I notice what looks like a lot of smoke and I remember wondering if somebody was burning something in their yard but came to realize that it was only the world's biggest oil burning car. If W wants to eliminate our addiction to oil he should start with this car that is using half of our supply on every trip to the store. By the time I went through this cloud most of it had dissapated but our paths were about to cross again.

The burner and another car were a ways ahead of me at a stoplight and when the car went through it left the blackest cloud of smoke you'll ever see. I slow down a little bit but think that since those cars had gone ahead I would be through the cloud before I went through. Whoops.

The next second consisted of a thought, "oh shit, that's a car", a crash, "crunch", and my face slamming into an airbag "psshhh". I'm pretty stunned at what just happened and am stupidly starting at myself in the mirror. I see that my nose is bleeding but I don't do anything but watch. I'm still sitting there when the guy comes back to check on me.

"Are you alright?"
He starts walking to his car, looks back at me, comes back and says "are you sure you're ok?"
"Uhh, yeah," I say as I find a napkin and start wiping the blood off me. It's at this point that I realize that my horn is going off. He tells me to pull onto the side street to get things worked out so I do and shut off my car. The horn is still going.
I pop the hood but can't get it open.

"Hey, can you do something about that horn?"
"Umm, I can't get the latch to open."

After popping the hood again I finally manage to get it open and we start looking for the horn to disconnect it.

We can't find it. People are starting to look out their windows at us.

"Fuck, where is this thing?"
"I can't find it."
"Maybe if I disconnect the battery?"
"You might have other problems then. Well, do you have any tools?"
"No, I don't think so."

Turns out I do have a little toolbox in the trunk so I disconnect the battery. Whew. I finally asses the damage and the hood is banged up and the below that is pretty scratched up but it looks like it's still drivable and the radiator was intact, fortunately.

He calls the cops and we end up with the rudest policewoman ever. Gee, sorry, for bothering you with my wrecked car, bleeding nose, and horn that won't shut off. I guess I thought that was your job. I comply with her order to hand over license, registration, and insurance (at least I had some). So, while we're exchanging all of our information I realize that my breath probably still reeks from beer the night before. The only good thing is that no one noticed that little fact.

After we get everything squared away and I miracuously avoid a ticket for everything I had to figure out what to do with this horn. The guy tells me that I should drive to the Chevy dealer on 84th and L Street. I'm on 42nd.

"Yeah, you just go past the interstate until you get to L and then turn right. It's about 2 or 3 miles to L Street. That's the best place I could guess that would be open today."


Well, time to get going. I reconnect the battery.
Start my car.
Drive around the block.
Start driving to L Street.
Everyone on the sidewalk turns to stare. People I pass in their cars turn to stare. People in front of me at stoplights turn around to stare. Me? Two hands on the wheel, eyes straight ahead. Apology waves with both hands at stoplights. "Sorry, dude. Not my fault."

Finally, there's the dealership whip around the corner, find a parking spot, and shut the thing off. Of course the dealership is closed. So, my cell phone isn't working, I'm stuck in Omaha with a car that won't shut up and everywhere is closed. Proper fucked.

I walk to the gas station and call AAA.
"We don't do maintenance calls. Did you try unhooking it?"
"Yeah, I can't get to it."

I get some quarters for the pay phone. Alright, 50 cent local calls.
"Please enter the number you wish to call."
"Please do not dial the area code for that number."
"Please deposit 50 cents."
I already did.
"Please deposit 50 cents"
OK, here's 50 more cents.
"Please deposit 50 cents."
Oh, you piece of shit...

I try this one more time with the same results. At least it gave me my quarters back though.

Finally, I have to bill the calls to my credit card which will probably cost $5 each. Bennett comes to pick me up and we try to form a plan of action. Everyone is telling us we need to try the Wal-Mart but we find a supposed 24 hour service line. After a ridiculous amount of "press this number" menus they finally give a number to the Chevy line. The guy there asks if we tried the fuse.

The fuse! Dammit.

So, I find the fuse and how about that, it works! So, now I'm on my way home. I'm not sure if any of you have ever had your airbags deploy but they use the decomposition of sodium azide to inflate them fast enough. This reaction pretty much causes a burning sulfur smell kind of like scorched rotten eggs so that was pretty sweet to drive in for so many hours.

I looked like some type of jalopy headed down the road with flattened airbags on my lap and a dented hood that was shaking all the way home. It was pretty amazing.

So, the aftermath is the car is still drivable but I'm thinking about buying something else instead of sinking more money into it since it's falling apart anyway. It's a great feeling to think about how this whole deal screwed up any resale value it might have had. Ugh, disgusting.

Friday, February 17, 2006

Take that Freedom Ticklers!

In the tradition of Freedom Fries and the ever-popular Freedom Tickler machine in the truckstop bathroom, Iran has changed the name of Danish Pastries to Roses of the Prophet Muhammad as a protest over the Danish cartoons. Wow, what a great name and what a great way to show those Danes who's boss by renaming the pastries you're making in Iran. I'm sure this is just destroying their morale and will be apologizing for real soon.

To sum up the feelings of every sane person in the U.S. and Iran Zohreh Masoumi said, "I just want the sweet pastries. I have nothing to do with the name."

Just give me the damn fries and some quarters for the french tickler machine.

The People's Tag-Team Partner

The Stanford Tree was fired after it was discovered that she was wasted at a basketball game. How wasted you ask? Well, she blew a .157 at the game. THAT wasted.

First off, of course she was wasted. Have you seen this thing? Just look at the googly eyes and the huge grin. That's pretty much a carbon-copy of just about every picture taken of me from late 1999 to early 2005.

Second, is this quote. "the university had previously placed the band on "alcohol suspension," which requires a zero-tolerance policy toward drunkenness, said band spokesman Sam Urmy." Alcohol suspension? Zero-tolerance. Clearly this is not the ISUCF"V"MB. And yes, I am embarrassed that a) I remembered the acronym and b) that I just typed it.

"The band's drunk!"

In other news note Bryant Gumbel's comment on his new HBO show Gumbel 2 Gumbel: Sports! "Mmmhmm. mmhmm."

No, actually it was this beauty on the Winter Olympics, "So try not to laugh when someone says these are the world’s greatest athletes, despite a paucity of blacks that makes the winter games look like a GOP convention." Easy target? Probably. Cheap shot? Sure. The truth? Pretty much right on both counts.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Dick Cheney loves drunk hunting

Cheney is going to admit on Fox News tonight that he was drinking that day he blasted his fellow hunter in the face with a shotgun blast. OK, he's only admitting to "one beer at lunch five hours before they went back out to hunt".

But, come on! Everyone knows what that means! It's always a factor of seven when you're trying to cover up your drinking. I come home trashed in high school and tell my parents I had "three beers" which really means "half a bottle of vodka". Someone gets pulled over by the cops and say they had "two glasses of wine with dinner two hours ago" which means "I had the two glasses and then finsished the rest of the bottle". Does he think we're stupid? It's all about plausible deniability. Everyone there saw him drinking but they can't definitively say how many he drank before he went back out to hunt. It could have been one, it could have been 20.

What kind of an asshole goes out hunting, possibly drunk, and then wheels around to shoot without having any clue what was behind him? Oh yeah, Dick Cheney asshole.

It's the simple things, really

Now that I'm back in school I'm rediscovering some of the simple pleasures of college life. Sure there's plenty that sucks: the studying, frat guys, everyone looking like they're too young to be in college, but I do find the things I like. One of these is the Library Nap.

I enjoy a lot of naps. Not necessarily in a numeric sense but in my neurotic attempts to categorize things I've come up with categories for my naps. Some are obvious like the Car Nap (who has an evil twin, the driver nap), the I Drank Way Too Late Last Night So I'm Going Back to Bed Nap, and the nap I rediscovered today, the Library Nap. For me this often occured when I would have a block of time between classes where it's too short to go home so I would head to library to read the paper or my books or something.

There's usually not too much pressure to study (although that time is always great "on paper" time...the kind where you think "wow, I can get a whole hour's worth of homework done there" but you never actually spend anywhere close to an hour working). Because I wasn't feeling pressured I would almost inevitably start drifting into sleep to make up for the time I spent doing my homework that I said I was going to do in the library the day before.

So, I'd find a comfortable chair and stretch out and be out for a while. Just great, peaceful sleep with just enough background noise to put you down for good. It feels awesome while you're sleeping and you don't really want it to end. Mmmmm.....then...

BAM! You're awake. Where am I? Why are those other people sleeping in chairs? Why are there people walking around all over? The moment just before the napper realizes where they are and silences their panic alarm is always ripe with comedy. Everything is calm again before the aftershock. Oh, shit. Did I miss my class? Ah, screw it, I'm going back to sleep.

Monday, February 13, 2006

Eddie Sutton joke

It now appears that a DUI joke would have been more appropriate since he was given a citation for that. Witnesses saw him stumble to his car and hit his head when he fell in the parking lot prior to the accident. There's speculation that it was painkillers for his back but either way, damn, dude, get a driver.

Sunday, February 12, 2006

Brick killed a guy

The secret to KU's success? Apparently, pillow fights. Maybe instead of knocking on their doors we should have waited for them outside their doors with a pillowcase full of pennies.

All Decade Team of the Big 12 was released.

Marcus Fizer
Nick Collison
Kirk Hinrich
Raef LaFrentz
TJ Ford

The question I posed to Swany was how could they include JT's bitch but not JT? Anyway, I can see Hinrich being on the list but Tinsley should have been on there over Ford. Tinsley basically carried ISU to it's 00-01 Big 12 title. I mean, who else was on that team? Kantrail Horton, Martin Rancik, Paul Shirley, freshmen Jake Sullivan and Shane Power? It's amazing the team accomplished as much as it did.

Second, it's kind of interesting that all three of KU's guys were from Iowa. Personally, I would have picked Paul Pierce over Collison. He was automatic for them back then. I'm not sure if it was all fan voting that decided it but I would guess that Hinrich and Collison were rewarded for being the 4 year golden boys.

I don't remember if I mentioned it or not but Eddie Sutton was in car wreck where he was going 60 on some street in Stillwater, crossed the center line, rear-ended another SUV when he overcorrected and didn't stop until he hit a tree. I'm debating whether I want to make an elderly driver joke or insinuate that he was drunk. Insert your own joke.

Speaking of crazy old people, Dick Cheney shot a dude. Damn.

The best comment I saw at Daily Kos was "Guns don't hurt people, megalomaniacal insane asshole vice presidents hurt people."

Fortunately for Cheney the White House announced that the man he shot was actually Al Qaeda's number 2 man making him the 37th "number 2 man" they've captured or killed.

But, seriously, the thing that pisses me off about Dick Cheny is that he goes to those places where they raise the birds in captivity and then a guy walks to the area where Dick and his fatcat friends are sitting and releases the fat, dumb birds right in front of them. In fact, it was reported at one of these hunts that Cheney killed 70 birds on his own. What a badass. That's such bullshit and it's just about the same as tying a deer to a pole so you can walk up and shoot it in the head. It's not real hunting and despite what the press reports say it is Cheney's fault because you never shoot unless you know where everyone is. So, not only is he an asshat but he's an irresponsible and dangerous hunter.

And he hunts people.

Saturday, February 11, 2006

I wasn't sure if A-Rod could make me hate him more than I already did but, yep, he found a way.

The Olympics are weird.

But, actually, I'm watching the replay of the replay of the opening ceremony and that red dude is a badass. He's standing onstage hitting an anvil with a giant hammer and huge flames shoot out everytime he hits it. In fact, there's a lot of fire and a lot of people dressed in red. I can't dismiss the possibility that I've wandered into a White Zombie video. Nothing says the Olympics like ice skaters shooting flames off their backs. Now we've switched to the Alps, Bob Costas tells me. "Here comes the Tree Men" as dudes play those huge horns they had in the Ricola commercials. Wow.

I still have a goal of completing the dream that John and Jake and I had of watching 24 straight hours of Olympics but I really think that is more of a summer olympics event. I need a lot of time and a lot of substances to keep me from gouging my eyes out after Bob Costas tells me the 437th heartwarming "athlete overcoming great odds to be here today" story. Judging by the pictures above and past mascots I think they are probably infinitely more entertaining after a few bong hits.
"Oh, man, what the hell are those giant marshmellows doing? What the fuck?"
"Hey, you wanna call Munchiez?"

Now let me talk about wiretapping. Another Bush rant, you say? You wish. No, I'm talking about the Great One trying to get his wife off the hook on this gambling thing. So, apparently he was on the phone with his assistant coach who happened to be the organizer of this gambling ring trying to keep his wife's name out of the probe. Unfortunately for him, the call was being monitored. The details of his wife's gambling? She put down over $500,000 on football games in a period of 40 days and even won $5,000 on the Super Bowl coin toss (I had heads). $500K? Jebus. That's not going to look good for an NHL coach.

Me? I'm just hoping she gets sent to prison for some reason because I have $500 that she won't make another Police Academy movie before 2008.


By the way, all of these are from my favorite sportsblog, Deadspin. Thanks, Deadspin! Now, I just have to link and comment on what you linked and commented on.

Thursday, February 09, 2006

High as a kite, everybody. Goofballs!

This is possibly the best idea for a restaurant/hangout ever. It's in KC and pretty much caters to stoners with a bunch of snack foods and fun stuff to play with.

"Yeah, I'll take the cheese puffs, twinkies, pringles, a bowl of soup, some mac and cheese, two sodas, and a pickle."
"Will that be all?"
"For now."

Say you’re smoking up a storm and maybe it’s not exactly legal — wink, wink — and suddenly you’re overcome by a powerful hunger …

Who ya gonna call?

Would you believe, Munchiez? (That’s pronounced munchies.)

Between the hours of 4:20 p.m. and 4:20 a.m., the Westport-based biz dishes up “finger foods, sandwiches, soups, drinks and desserts.” No booze, Tuesdays, Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays only. Then April 20 (4/20) they’re pitching a tent out back and throwing a street party for their customers.

Suffice it to say, Munchiez caters to the late-night party crowd by feeding them Ding Dongs, Ho Hos, gummy bears, Twix bars, quaint baggies filled with giant cheese puffs, coffee and sodas, mac & cheese — you name it.

“I’m Brandi and this is my wife, Lisa,” co-owner Brandi Blair says as I waltzed into the cozy biz at 1517 Westport Road at midnight last week.

“We cater more to the night owls, the partying crowd,” Lisa explains. “It works out very well for us. A lot of times we don’t get out of here until 6 a.m.”

With leopard carpeting, khaki walls, an antique tin ceiling, comfy retro ’50s furniture from Weird Stuff Antiques in the Crossroads, board games available on request and Wi-Fi, the Blairs provide an ultra laid-back getaway to the weary party monster.

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

This wouldn't have happened if Ed Hochuli was out there

The NFL says the Super Bowl was "properly officiated." Yeah, if you were a Steelers fan. I've never, ever seen a game where the refs took off more points from one team and added them to the other team. I mean, you just go down the list and it's ridiculous. A phantom pass intereference call that wasn't called until the Pitt player started whining brings back a TD, a phantom holding call brings back 1st and goal from the three, a phantom "rolling in front of the blocker call" added 15 yards to the interception. How the hell can you call that when he was trying to make a tackle? What a horrible call. A 4th and inches turns into a phantom touchdown. I mean, it just kept happening over and over. It had to be one of the biggest screwjobs I've ever seen and I've been a lot of Iowa State games.

A lot of people are throwing out ideas on how to fix this problem. Full-time, younger refs, replay decisions made upstairs, etc. Those all sound good but they're ignoring the real solution. Clone Ed Hochuli so that he can ref every position. Do you think he would make a bad call with guns like those? Hell no. If a coach would throw the challenge flag he would rip the machine in two and re-enact the play using his rippling biceps. And the coach would admit it was the right call.

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Blue Collar

There's going to be basketball talk and a lot of looking at stats so skip to my latest political rant if you don't care.

On Sunday Curtis Stinson recorded ISU's third ever triple-double and the first since Jamaal Tinsley did it in 2000. He racked up 24 points, 10 boards, and his tenth assist after a Rahshon Clark three. In fact, Stinson has been pretty much unstoppable his last five games. Over that stretch he is averaging 25.6 points, 6 rebounds, 6 assists, 2.6 steals, 2.2 turnovers and is shooting over 50% from the field and 36% from three. The past two years he's had some problems with turnovers and shooting but this is the first year that his hands or wrists are healthy and he's really playing some good ball.

Looking at the conference race for player of the year he is setting himself up to be in great position to win it. As of today he ranks (conference games only) 2nd in scoring with 20.9 (0.1 points behind Roby whom they held to 10 points on Sunday), 8th in field goal percentage (.481), 1st in assists (6.0 pg mostly from the two guard position), 13th in free throw % (76.2%), 2nd in steals (2.88), 10th in assist to turnover ratio. Add into the mix that he's just 0.3 boards per game from being in the top 20 and he's having an amazing year. I can't imagine there are too many 20-6-5 guys in college basketball.

In fact, just looking around he looks like the only major-conference player averaging 5 and 5.

Compared to some of the best in the country his numbers look pretty good:

EDIT: HAving some formatting problems but I'm too lazy to fix it. If it works it works. The point is, Stinson owns these guys.

Curtis Stinson 19.6 5.1 5.4
J.J. Redick 28.1 2.2 2.6
Adam Morrison 28.4 5.6 1.6
Quincy Douby 23.9 4.1 2.9
Chris Quin 18.7 4.1 6.3
Justin Gray 19.5 3.8 4.0

When you look at his overall numbers across the board I think it's going to be hard to pick someone else for conference player of the year. Oh wait, who am I kidding? This is the Big 12 we're talking about. Texas Texas Kansas Texas Kansas Kansas Texas Oklahoma Kansas Texas Texas 9 other schools Texas Kansas Kansas Texas.

I like Texas' guards a lot and there's something to be said for leading your team to more wins and Texas has a ton of weapons but I just can't see anyone in the league that can match Stinson's all-around game. P.J. Tucker comes closest at 10th in scoring, 1st in rebounding, and 9th in steals or maybe Taj Gray at 11th in scoring, 3rd in rebounding, and 2nd in blocks.

So, with all that Stinson (and Blalock for that matter) is doing what's going wrong? Clearly it's defense and rebounding. 12th in the conference in scoring defense (77.1), 12th in fg% defense (49.8%....brutal), 9th in defensive rebounding, 10th in rebounding margin, 11th in blocked shots, yet they are 1st in turnover margin (by a huge margin +6.38 to +3.22 for A&M in 2nd), 1st in assist/turnover ratio. The team is still forcing a lot of turnovers and taking care of the ball but they can't stop anyone unless they get a turnover. The KU game is a perfect example. They shot the ball about 20 more times than KU but because the Jayhawks were getting such good looks they were up around 60% for most of the game and their 20 turnovers had little effect.

If this team had even average post play they would be right up there with OU, UT, and KU. But, could things be changing? Shawn Taggart played tough, physical defense for maybe the first time all season last week and was rewarded with 11 points and 10 rebounds to become the third Cyclone to hit at least a double-double against CU (Clark had 24 and 14). If their post players can play some defense and the team can play the type of inspired defense they played last week they have a great shot to finish 4th or even 3rd with some luck. However, consistancy has been the biggest issue and will continue to be until they prove otherwise.

See you at camp!

It's Conspiracy Theory Day here in the Basement so it's important to remember that it seems crazy until it's too late so it's worth discussing some of these inconsistancies.

First, Diebold is a major provider of the electronic voting machines that are becoming more and more prevalent. They are also major contributors to the Republican Party and owned by big wings in the party. Just look at this quote from Diebold CEO last August. "I am committed to helping Ohio deliver its electoral votes to the president." Oh, well, that's comforting, I suppose.

So, it comes to election day and the final results match the exit polls in all but two states. Ohio and Florida and both tipped heavily to Bush. Coincidence? Not really. Statistically it's almost impossible for these exit polls to be as wrong as they were because they eliminate the last bias of opinion polls, who actually voted. In fact, Ohio voted on five voter initiatives and all of them were right on for the exit polls except for the issue of election reform to prevent this very type of fraud.

Diebold claims that their machines are secure and they might be but the major weakness occurs in the fact that the votes are actually stored and counted on a regular Windows based PC (and we all know it's nearly impossible to hack into those...). Here's a piece detailing some info on the exit polls and how easy it is for local officials to change votes.

So, this all brings me to my main point. A county in Ohio is re-voting for some local initiative because the Diebold machines spit out 77 more votes than there were registered voters in the county. Now, why exactly are Republicans opposed to making a paper trail for these votes? Why musst we be forced to send our vote into a black hole with no idea what it will be when it comes out the other side? Diebold is also a leading manufacturer of ATM's and price scanners at the grocery store where you get a receipt every single time but they claim they don't have the technology to do that for their voting machines? There's just way too much that doesn't smell right in that whole thing.

Attorney General Alberto Gonzales is being grilled by the Senate over the legality of Bush's domestic spying without warrants. During the hearings they had this exchange:

BIDEN: Thank you very much.
General, how has this revelation damaged the program?

I'm almost confused by it but, I mean, it seems to presuppose that these very sophisticated Al Qaida folks didn't think we were intercepting their phone calls.

I mean, I'm a little confused. How did it damage this?

GONZALES: Well, Senator, I would first refer to the experts in the Intel Committee who are making that statement, first of all. I'm just the lawyer.

And so, when the director of the CIA says this should really damage our intel capabilities, I would defer to that statement. I think, based on my experience, it is true -- you would assume that the enemy is presuming that we are engaged in some kind of surveillance.

But if they're not reminded about it all the time in the newspapers and in stories, they sometimes forget.


Geez. Are you kidding me? Is really saying that al Qaeda would forget that the US might be spying on their phone calls if the media wouldn't report it?

"Oh shit! Ahmed, did you see the New York Times today? It says that Bush is listening into our calls."
"Oh, snap! Dude, I totally called our sleeper cell in New York like 5 times last week to talk about the plan."
"Osama's going to be pissed."

And, finally, there's this story. The Army Corps of Engineers announced that they awarded a $385 million contract to build "temporary immigrant detention centers." The centers will be used for "an unexpected influx of immigrants, to house people in the event of a natural disaster or for new programs that require additional detention space."

Umm, what? "New programs that require additional detention space"? Can you maybe clarify that a little bit. Nearly $400 million dollars worth of detention camps and you can't be a little more specific than that? Hey, great, see you all at camp! Unfortunately, I don't think there will be any swimming pools at this camp. Oh, and get this, who do you think got the bid for these camps? Why, none other than KBR, syndicate of everyone's best friend, Halliburton.

I would love to see how many billions of dollars the Bush administration has sent Halliburton over the last five years. But, I'm sure it's just a coincidence that they get these no-bid contracts and overcharge for everything they do. Pay no attention to the vice president behind the curtain! They can charge whatever they want in Iraq! Illegal immigrants to rebuild New Orleans? Come on over, boys! Just ignore those race-baiters in our party, there's money to be made!

Saturday, February 04, 2006

Bush III

Senator George Allen is considered by many (including Rush Limbaugh, gag) to be the Republican's leading choice for president in 2008. Of course, he's a complete moron. Just look at this exchange:

[H]ere is what Senator George Allen of Virginia, who is considering a bid for the Republican presidential nomination in 2008, said when asked his opinion of the Bernanke nomination.

“For what?”

Told that Mr. Bernanke was up for the Fed chairman’s job, Mr. Allen hedged a little, said he had not been focused on it, and wondered aloud when the hearings would be. Told that the Senate Banking Committee hearings had concluded in November, the senator responded: “You mean I missed them all? I paid no attention to them”.

It reminds me of when Homer Simpson was the medical marijuana activist. " Oh man, they already voted! And we lost! Oh man, I can't believe we spaced on the date!"

Thursday, February 02, 2006

Jodie Sweetin update

I'm not sure if Aaron has seen this or not but being such a big Jodie Sweetin fan I knew he would be interested to know that she used to be addicted to meth. As if that, in itself, isn't strange enough the people that organized her intervention included Mary Kate and Ashley Olson, John Stamos, and Bob Saget. Just let that sink in a second.

Can you imagine a better moment than that? I KNOW that they had the string music as Danny and Uncle Jesse explain what she did wrong and Jodie goes through the lessons she learned and Michelle says something cute before it all ends with a big hug and an "ahhhhhhh" from the audience. I just really wonder if they all stayed in character or if Bob Saget was making jokes like he did in Half Baked and Mary Kate and Ashley were doing coke in the bathroom and puking up their dinner while John Stamos Romijn did whatever he did? I think like the Full House version better.

I love how she tries to blame the end of the show for her meth habit. It was like 9 years later, find something better than that!

Anyway, congrats on getting your act together, Jodie Sweetin.

Bush unveils more of his plan to end oil addiction

I have to give Bush a lot of props for his energy plan. This is really coming together nicely.

One day after you announce your plan to cut Middle Eastern oil imports by 75% you say that you didn't literally mean it. Two days after you announce that you're going to cut oil usage through wind and ethanol power the New York Times reports:

The Energy Department will begin laying off researchers at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory in the next week or two because of cuts to its budget.

A veteran researcher said the staff had been told that the cuts would be concentrated among researchers in wind and biomass, which includes ethanol. Those are two of the technologies that Mr. Bush cited on Tuesday night as holding the promise to replace part of the nation's oil imports.



OK, let me think about that for a second longer.

I think this is called the "Tinkerbell Strategy". We'll find new energy sources if you just believe! There's no need to fund these initiatives! Clap harder, everyone! The war in Iraq would be going great if all of you stopped criticizing the president. We're going to improve math and science in this country by dumbing down our science standards and cutting student loans. Clap harder! I believe!

Have I fallen into 1984? Cheney mocks oil conservation a few years ago and says that Americans should enjoy all the oil they can because they deserve it and then says that we should conserve a few months ago? Bush says we need to reduce our oil consumption and then cuts our ability to do so? The legislation rolling back years of environmental laws is called the Clean Skies and Healthy Forest Initiative. We've always been at war with Eurasia. War is peace. Freedom is slavery. Ignorance is strength.

Literally what I said was "yeah, sure, sir"

You remember that whole thing Bush talked about last night that lead every paper today? The thing about breaking our "addiction to oil" and cutting Middle Eastern imports by 75% by 2025? Well, I guess that's not QUITE what he meant.

WASHINGTON - One day after President Bush vowed to reduce America's dependence on Middle East oil by cutting imports from there 75 percent by 2025, his energy secretary and national economic adviser said Wednesday that the president didn't mean it literally.

What the president meant, they said in a conference call with reporters, was that alternative fuels could displace an amount of oil imports equivalent to most of what America is expected to import from the Middle East in 2025.

But America still would import oil from the Middle East, because that's where the greatest oil supplies are.

The president's State of the Union reference to Mideast oil made headlines nationwide Wednesday because of his assertion that "America is addicted to oil" and his call to "break this addiction."

Bush vowed to fund research into better batteries for hybrid vehicles and more production of the alternative fuel ethanol, setting a lofty goal of replacing "more than 75 percent of our oil imports from the Middle East by 2025."

He pledged to "move beyond a petroleum-based economy and make our dependence on Middle Eastern oil a thing of the past."

Not exactly, though, it turns out.

"This was purely an example," Energy Secretary Samuel Bodman said.

He said the broad goal was to displace foreign oil imports, from anywhere, with domestic alternatives. He acknowledged that oil is a freely traded commodity bought and sold globally by private firms. Consequently, it would be very difficult to reduce imports from any single region, especially the most oil-rich region on Earth.

Asked why the president used the words "the Middle East" when he didn't really mean them, one administration official said Bush wanted to dramatize the issue in a way that "every American sitting out there listening to the speech understands." The official spoke only on condition of anonymity because he feared that his remarks might get him in trouble.

Presidential adviser Dan Bartlett made a similar point in a briefing before the speech. "I think one of the biggest concerns the American people have is oil coming from the Middle East. It is a very volatile region," he said.

So, can someone tell me what part of his speech was "literal" and which parts were "examples"? Thanks.