Thursday, December 31, 2009

Happy and Safe New Years

Well, another year has come and gone ... it really flew by, didn't it? It seems like the older we get, the faster time seems to go, doesn't it? I remember being 5, and thinking at Christmas that summertime would never get here ... now, it seems like I roll over and go to sleep on Christmas, and the next thing I know, I'm turning up the air-conditioning ... weird.

Anyway, I usually do some predictions ... I went back to my 2009 predictions, and I'm surprised by a couple of them. Specifically, I predicted that something was going to happen to Michael Jackson - here's what I said: 9. Something extraordinary is going to happen to Michael Jackson ... I'm not sure if it's going to be a good thing, a bad thing, or both. I predict he'll either make a comeback (fueled by the MTV music awards ... much like they successfully did with Brittney), or he won't make it to 2010 (I'm not even sure if he's human anymore, to tell you the truth).

I really am amazing, aren't I? I also predicted the Michael Vick would be on an NFL team ... unfortunately, that turned out to be my Ealges ... sigh. Well, let's see if I can't put together some predictions for 2010:

1. Tiger Woods will embrace the "Playboy" lifestyle, will grow out a Goatee, and will sport a tattoo on his neck that says "Playa."

2. A famous musician will die abruptly ... I'm guessing this musician will be a pop star ... maybe along the lines of Brittany Spears (safe bet), or John Maier (a more aggressive choice).

3. An NBA scandal that involves David Stern will surface, jeopardizing the league.

4. Tom Cruise will be involved in some scandal that will once-and-for-all ruin his career.

5. We will continue to see slow but positive recovery with the economy ... jobs will increase across the world ... it's gotta happen, right?

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

80's Corner

I talked about the California Raisins last week, and it brought up another 1980's marketing campaign from that era ... and surprise, surprise ... it was by a beer company ... and even more surprising, it was by Budweiser. The one-time American brewery kicked off an era of "animal-marketing" with Spuds McKenzie, a pit-bull wearing Bud Light sweatshirts and sunglasses promoting Bud Light.

It seemed like no matter where Spuds would waddle, there was a party to be had. Spuds was the man ... er, dog about town. Whether it was pool parties, club parties, or sports games at bars, Spuds was there with a throng of party-goers. No, Spuds never talked, and was never really seen with a beer in his paw, but that didn't stop him from partying like a rock star!

Here's the thing, I was well-below the legal drinking age, but man did I want to hang with Spuds, wear Bud Light shirts, and drink beer. In fact, I think I did have a Spuds McKenzie Bud Light t-shirt back then. I'm not sure what this said about me or society back then ...

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Sad Day on Sesame Street ...

Many of you probably know that I'm a fan of Sesame Street ... well, at least B.E. Sesame Street (before Elmo). You know, the Sesame Street in which Big Bird had a huge Mastodon friend that none of the adults could see, the one where Cookie Monster was so out of control, he would eat tables ... yeah, that's my kind of Sesame Street! I remember crying when Mr. Hooper died.

Speaking of death on Sesame Street - another adult character from the show has passed. , who played Olivia on the show (as well as Olivia on 227)died last week. Alaina Reed-Amini.

Olivia was Gordon's sister, and although she wasn't as prominent on the show as Gordon, Bob, Luis, and the others. But, she added spunk to the show. And even though she ended up leaving the show when she got a part on 227, she was still "Sesame Street for Life."

Monday, December 28, 2009

Song of the Week

I hope everyone had a great Christmas (holiday). I had a lot of fun hanging with family and friends, and of course opening presents. Some of my favorite presents included a netbook, a cool fishing game for the Wii, tickets to a Stones tribute band show, and the Freaks and Geeks DVD set.

Of course the most "interesting" present I received was a gag gift from my brother and his wife ... the Bob Dylan Christmas CD. Yes, you heard me right, Bob Dylan released a cd of classic Christmas songs this past fall ... and sadly, it's as awful as the idea sounds. Dylan never had a great voice, but it fit in well with the music he wrote. With each passing year, his voice has gotten progressively worse.

Folks, his voice has hit rock-bottom with this album. I'm confused with this - Dylan has been see-sawing for years between Christianity and Judaism... I actually think his back to being Jewish, which makes this project head-scratching. What prompted hims to do this?Did he lose a bet with his son Jacob? I'm sure he's set financially, right?

As bad as this album is, there is one song that isn't half-bad, and could live on with each successive Christmas season - "Must be Santa." Maybe I gravitate to this diddy because it's a song that was a staple of my grade-school chorus. Maybe because it's goofy and light-hearted ... and actually fun. Maybe it's because the background vocalists seem more prominent than Bob Dylan in this. Whatever the reason, if you need a new Christmas album, the Bob Dylan album is not the one for you ... but you can download "Must Be Santa."

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Way to go, Woody

Thankfully, there have been a lot of other news stories recently that took precidence over the one featuring a member of my favorite band, the Rolling Stones. Yep, the junior of the band, 62-year-old Ron Wood got himself in trouble a few weeks ago when he got into some sort of domestic dispute with his 21-year-old model/girlfriend (ah, the life of a rock-star). You can read more about it here.
There are rumors flying around that the Stones may end up kicking Woody out of the band prior to a new album and rumored tour in 2010. I'm not sure how true these rumors are, but it's fun to speculate (at least I think it's fun) on who the replacement might be.

So, below is a list of some potential replacements:

* Mick Taylor - He replaced Brian Jones as guitarist of the Stones (and was subsequently replaced by Woods). Many claim this was the best era of the band - Taylor, at that point, was considered as good of a blues guitarist as Eric Clapton. He left the band when they refused to give him writing credits on some of the songs. Stones fans desperately want hm back.

* Jack White - The man is arguably the highest rising star in rock music today ... he has played on stage with the Stones a couple of times already ... and get this, he's been hanging out and writing songs with Keith Richards! Rumor has it, he's going to produce the new Stones album ... would he consider touring with the band for a year and a half?

* Joe Perry - Heck, Aerosmith is just imploded recently, and Joe Perry basically imitates Keef anyway ... could the two play together?

* Jimmy Page - The man tried out for the Stones after Brian Jones was fired by the band. Would he put his ego aside now and join the band?

* George Thorogood - Lonesome George is friends with Mick and Keith, and actually learned all the Stones songs during the 1981 tour in case Ronnie Wood died - he was in-line to be the next guitarist of the boys.

* Pete Townsend - The man is close friends with Mick, and has written quite a few songs in recent years with Mick. Would the stage be big enough for Pete, Keith, and Mick?

Friday, December 25, 2009

Weird News

Merry Christmas to one and all. And here's to hoping next year will be a healthy and happy (and funny) one.

1. On a local teen being arrested for having sex with horses.
"Man, that gives a whole new meaning to the term 'horsing around.'"

2. On a report that states that whiskey hangovers are worse than vodka hangovers.
"How does one get to be a part of this study?!?!?"

3.On a report that shows that Clark County has nearly twice as many cows as it does people.
"I'd like to see the A-'cow'-nting that was done of this ... I have a feeling it's just a bunch of 'bull.'"

4. On the U.S. planning to capture cow farts to save the planet.
"For some reason, I found this story quite a-'moo'sing."

5. On somebody stealing the infamous Auschwitz "Arbeit Macht Frei" sign.
"Not sure if this would be a cool college dorm-room piece or a disturbing piece."

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Song of the Week ...

As some of you know, I really am a child/adolescent of the 80's. 80's music has always resonated with me - whether it was the "poppy" stuff like Madonna or Cyndi Lauper, the alternative stuff like Erasure, The Cure, or New Order, the more "punky" stuff like Madness or the Clash, or the straight up rock stuff (too many artists to mention).

A few nights ago at a local bar, my friend Mark began playing a bunch of 80's music. One song really stuck out for me - it was a band that had made its bones in the 70's doing a lot of disco. They were able to slip in another hit in the early to mid 1980's. The group (in my best Casey Casem voice) ... K.C. and the Sunshine Band. The song (continuing with the Casem voice) ... Give it Up.

As is expected, there still is a heavy disco undertone to this. But, there are some 80's synth-sounds added to this. The song itself is is pretty redundant, but in a good way.

I remember hearing this on 98-WCAU Hot Hits, and trying to record it on my old Hitachi radio/tape player. I had no knowledge of K.C.'s previous songs, I just knew that I loved this one. It didn't take me long to learn the song by heart. But sadly for K.C., this was his bands last real hit.
Here's a "live" performance.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Dope or Nope

This one really gets on my nerves, so obviously, it's a whopping "Nope" for me. Pronouncing the word "Jaguar" seems to be difficult for many Americans ... especially national sportscasters. So, this is how one is supposed to say it - jag-wahr. In fact, you can go here to hear an audio clip of how to say it.

You know what, I'm even fine with the more "regal" or British way of saying jaguar - jag-yoo-er.

But the way that I hear FAR too many people say it is - jag-wire. Ooooh, this grates on my nerves. It's like somebody is scratching a chalk-board. I hate it, I hate it, I hate it! And yet, nobody seems to care. Am I making too big of a deal about this?

Monday, December 21, 2009

Fast Food Corner

Arby's has put together a value menu special in recent months. It's called the "$5.01 menu." I'm not really entirely sure why they decided to add the penny to this - I think the marketing campaign mentions something about "worth every penny." Anyway, I'm not crazy about the campaign, but the menu really is fantastic ... well, at least the two menu items I've tried in the past 3 weeks or so.

The menu items include curly fries (ALWAYS a plus) and a drink. The choices are as follows:

* French Dip and Swiss - This really is a fantastic sandwich. The roast beef rests on a baguette that has a solid crust but is flaky on the inside. It is accompanied by some "au jus." The baguette is all too willing to soak up this juice, and it works beautifully. Don't forget to add some Horsey Sauce!

* The Roast Beef Patty Melt - The sandwich has some sort of cheesy topping. This time, the roast beef is snuggled between two pieces of sourdough bread. The sandwich really works well. I highly recommend it.

* The Roast Beef Gyro - I haven't tried this one yet, but I'm sure I will in due time. It looks like a traditional Arby's Giant Roast beef ... well, at least the toppings of tomatoes and lettuce do. And, of course, the actual sandwich is replaced with a gyro.

* If these above items are too "outside the box" for you, you can fall back on the traditional Arby's Roast Beef sandwich. I've spoken about this before.

* And, finally, a Roast Chicken sandwich is offered. Again, I haven't tried this one, but it looks as if the chicken is not a filet, but more like lunchmeat. The toppings are similar to the gyro, but sourdough bread is used. Not sure if I'm going to get to this one ... I guess we'll see.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Snow Kidding!

We're experiencing our first big snowstorm of the season, which always brings back a ton of childhood memories for me. I figured I'd share a couple with you (lucky you!):

* I so remember the anticipation of a coming snow-storm, and the desperate begging to Mother Nature to blanket us in a winter-wonderland so that school would be canceled. I remember listening intently to KYW-1060 for our school number to be read from the school-closing list. When the number "4-5-0" came across, the jubilation I felt was immeasurable. And, it's not like I went back to bed. Nope, I would immediately put on my winter gear, and head outside with friends to go sledding, play snow hockey, have snow-ball fights, and build snow forts. We'd take a brief break for lunch, and then journey outside into the the heavenly snow to continue our winter frolicking. Man, I miss it!

* I always love looking outside at the fresh snow on the lawn, on the street, and in the tree. It always feels like a winter post-card. Sadly, the scene doesn't stay that way for long, and my back doesn't seem to enjoy the snow nearly as much as the rest of me does (as evidenced by the pain it registers during and after snow shoveling).

* We are fortunate to live near a bar, so it's always fun to trek to a local watering hole during a blizzard, and enjoy the company of others with cabin fever.

* Sledding has always been a big part of a snow storm. We were lucky enough to have a couple of streets in front of our house that were very hilly. We also had a great hilly park near us with a nice-sized hill called "Monument Hill." (It is named this because T=there is a monument dedicated to soldiers who sacrificed their lives for freedom during World War 1.) This was a gathering place of many of my grade-school friends - we'd have sledding races and snowball fights. These were probably some of the greatest moments of my childhood.

* Lets not forget hot chocolate! The stuff never tasted better after coming in from a long day in the snow. Our bodies were shivering and frozen from the inside out, but hot chocolate had an amazing way of reversing this!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

80's Corner

Anybody remember the California Raisins? This was a huge ad campaign featuring "clay-mated" raisins that would strut around and sing like some sort of 1960's R&B group. It all started innocently enough as a few commercials, but for some reason, people became fascinated by these four shriveled-up super-stars (and now, I'm not talking about the Stones!).

From the commercials came a couple of albums, and even a cartoon. They went so far as to include a Michael Jackson California Raisin in a commercial ... I kid you not! They even did a Christmas special ... but I have no memory of what it was all about.

Heck, I remember sporting a California Raisins t-shirt at one time ... not sure if this was cool or not.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Weird News

Done my Christmas shopping!!! Let the fun begin!

1. On officers arresting 19-year-old Laura Miranda Landry for possession of marijuana after they found 49.5 grams of pot under the front seat of her car and in her bra.
"Reminds me of the Naked Gun movie line, 'Is this some kind of bust? Yes, it's very impressive!'"

2. On taxpayers paying to fix the penile erection problems of a jailed rapist:
"I can't believe we're paying taxes for such a dick! .... get it?"

3. On a report that links AIDS to Ancient Tigers.
"Does this means Woods is in more trouble?"

4. On a man who beat his wife for not helping to shovel the snow.
"All I can say about this is ... Snow Kidding! I'll be here all week!"

5. On random drugs tests being introduced to the World Pie Eating Championships:
"Wait a minute, I've never seen anyone eat a Lemon Marangue pie so quickly ... he must be taking roids!"

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Weekly Homework Assignment

It's time once again for Mama Kat's Weekly Homework Assignment! This week, I chose the prompt - Describe a funny or favorite gift that you’ve gotten or have given.

I remember it like it was yesterday ... I was probably around 12 or 12 years old. I got it into my head that my mom needed to expand her cooking skills a bit. Ya see, my mom is German, and most of the food she cooks is old-school German. Whether it's Gulash, Ruladen, or schnitzel, my mom can cook it. When it comes to other non-German foods, it's hit or miss. Spaghetti ... not so good. Steak or burgers? Cooked 'til they're gray. Nope, not her specialty.

So, I thought it would be a fantastic idea to buy dear old mom a Wok for Christmas. It never crossed my mind that my mother probably would have no interest in cooking Chinese food for the fam. Heck, I'd never even really had Chinese food by that point in my life, but that still didn't prevent me from purchasing a smallish wok at a store in the local mall.

I was so excited by this purchase ... I assumed immediately that this would probably be the greatest gift Inga (my mother) would ever receive in her life (again, I'm not sure how/why I came to this conclusion).

So, Christmas approached, and I eagerly handed mom the gift-wrapped wok. When she opened it, she didn't jump up and down excitedly like I anticipated. No, quite the opposite. She looked a little confused and maybe disappointed. I figured it would take a while for the excitement to set in, so I immediately turned my attention to the unopened presents for me.

At some point in the day/night, my mom took me aside and questioned why I would ever even consider buying her a wok. I asserted that mom could use this wok to create new spectacular dinners for the family. My mom immediately responded that I should never think of buying anything like this for her again. I guess I was a little disappointed, as instead of hitting the ball out of the park, I struck out on the gift.

The story does have a happy ending ... sort of. When it was time for me to go to college, I was able to bring along an unopened wok ... sigh.

80's Corner

Rick Springield ... power pop rocker? Soap opera heart-throb? Both?!?!?!? He sure was. When the mid 80's came around, there was nobody more on fire than Rick. I was still pretty much immersed in polka and Sesame Street music, but I distinctly remember my cousin Trish head over heels for this guy. She had bought the album "Working Class Dog" - I remember the album well - a dog with a tie.

He was a "doctor," on General Hospital, which brings up a great Bob Hope line from the movie Spies Like Us (ironically, a classic 1980's movie), in which he was introduced to Chevy Chase and Dan Aykroid when they were dressed as doctors, and his line was, "I'm glad I'm not sick!"

I probably shouldn't admit this, but I do own Rick Springfield's greatest hits cd ... and no, it's not an EP. It's actually pretty good, and brings back memories of Solid Gold, American Bandstand, and other 1980's memories.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Fast Food Corner

Back in the day, my dad often took me to this fast food restaurant by the name of "Arthur Treacher's Fish and Chips." This particular establishment was located not far from our house. Really, the only thing I remember about this place was the green roof, and that the only thing I really liked on the menu was the french fries. My dad LOVED the fish and chips ... I guess it somehow made him feel European all over again ... even though he's German, and this is decidedly more British/Irish.

I know by the time I was 8, the restaurant was long gone, and truthfully, I haven't seen one in this area since. I'm wondering if I'd look a little more kindly on the fare at this restaurant with my .... errr ... ummmm .... advanced pallet?

Has anybody else had the experience of eating at this "establishment?" Is it still even around?

Monday, December 14, 2009

Dope or Nope

Kids wearing their pants below their hips ... this really bothers me. Maybe it's a sign of my old age. I mean, after all, when I was growing up, I wore acid-washed jeans, and sported a mullet - this was what was cool back in the day. I wonder if I would've fallen into the pants below the hips "fad" if I was growing up today. What do you guys think about it?

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Song of the Week

Since we are in the heart of the Christmas (holiday) season, I wanted to share my 5 favorite Christmas songs in no particular order:

5. Do They Know It's Christmas by Band Aid - Just a beautiful song by a group of talented artists that included members from U2, Wham, Sting, Duran Duran, and so on - really, the main artists of the time for the most part. Makes you think about the less fortunate at a time when you SHOULD be thinking about them.

4. Father Christmas by The Kinks - A great punk-sounding Christmas song - it starts off as very light-hearted and funny, but towards the later parts of the song, the message of once again remembering "The Kids who got nothing, while your drinking down your wine" appears. It's fun, certainly has a sing-a-long quality, and thought-provoking.

3. Happy Christmas (War is Over) by John Lennon - Man, I guess I'm a sucker for songs with meaning. It is a protest song about Vietnam, or at least that's what it originally was. It has now become a Christmas staple ... and even if you can hear Yoko's voice, it doesn't ruin the song.

2. Little Drummer Boy by David Bowie and Bing Crosby - The young meeting with the old ... the harmonies bring a tear to my eye.

1. Santa Claus is Coming to Town by Bruce Springsteen - I'm a fan of Bruce, and this song just REMINDS me of Christmas memories. It's jovial, and fun ... and live, which means it's not over-produced ... the part where Bruce starts laughing is my favorite for some reason.

There are others - I just wanted to point out 5 of my favorite.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Funny E-mail

My friend Ink forwarded this e-mail to me - thought it was hysterical (and thought-provoking!):

O x y m o r o n s

1. Is it good if a vacuum really sucks?

2. Why is the third hand on the watch called the second hand?

3. If a word is misspelled in the dictionary, how would we ever know?

4. If Webster wrote the first dictionary, where did he find the words?

5. Why do we say something is out of whack? What is a whack?

6. Why does "slow down" and "slow up" mean the same thing?

7. Why does "fat chance" and "slim chance" mean the same thing?

8. Why do "tug" boats push their barges?

9. Why do we sing "Take me out to the ball game"

when we're already there?

10. Why are they called "stands" when they are made for sitting?

11. Why is it called "after dark" when it really is "after light"?

12. Doesn't "expecting the unexpected" make the unexpected expected?

13. Why are a "wise man" and a "wise guy" opposites?

14. Why do "overlook" and "oversee" mean opposite things?

15. Why is "phonics" not spelled the way it sounds?

16. If work is so terrific, why do they have to pay you to do it?

17. If all the world is a stage, where is the audience sitting?

18. If love is blind, why is lingerie so popular?

19. If you are cross-eyed and have dyslexia, can you read all right?

20. Why is bra singular and panties plural?

21. Why do you press harder on the buttons of a remote control when you know the batteries are dead?

22. Why do we put suits in garment bags and garments in a suitcase?

23. How come abbreviated is such a long word?

24. Why do we wash bath towels? Aren't we clean when we use them?

25. Why doesn't glue stick to the inside of the bottle?

26. Why do they call it a TV set when you only have one?

27. Christmas - What other time of the year do you see people sitting in front of a dead tree and eating candy out of socks?

28. Why do we drive on a parkway and park on a driveway?

Friday, December 11, 2009

Halloween Costumes

A while ago, I "promised" you some Halloween pictures. Well, I ended up finding a few. Hopefully, you'll enjoy these:

This is the "grand-daddy" of them all - the Ric Flair costume. The wife and I spent a couple of months putting this one together. We modeled it after the Nature Boy's famous black robe.

Here's Flair's actual robe:

I also dressed as German Folk Legend - Heino ... complete with the Mountain back-drop attached to me. Not many people got who I was, sadly:

Here's the "real" Heino (with Mick Jagger):

This past Halloween, I dressed up as Dwight Schrute (from the Office):

Here's the real one:

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Wacky News Stories

I knew there was a reason not to like Tiger! Egotistical maniac.

1. On a Mayor being asked to resign because he raised his voice to town employees.
"I'm sure this has nothing to do with bloated unions ..."

2. On a train steward refusing to sell a passenger an egg sandwich . . . because he might choke on it.
"What's next, not serving water because someone might drown?"

3. On prison guards unwittingly allowing a convicted drug dealer to grow cannabis in his cell, because he claimed it was a tomato plant ... and even allowing him decorate one 4ft plant as a Christmas tree.
"Schultz from Hogan's Heroes thinks these guards are dumb."

4. On a man having a heart attack in hospital parking lot, and the hospital refusing to help unless his son calls 911 and pays for the ambulance trip.
"Sounds like this hospital is being run by John Street's brother."

5. On a University banning Nerf guns because they might be confused as real guns.
"Did they hire those prison guards from story #3?"

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Weekly Homework Assignment

It's time once again for Mama Kat's Weekly Homework Assignment! This week is a very special week ... a week of hope and/or prayer ... you'll get the idea from the prompt I chose: Anissa is putting up the fight of her life right now. She's fighting to respond. She's fighting to get better. She's fighting to swallow. She's fighting to go home. Her husband updates us frequently on a blog Anissa used when their daughter Peyton was fighting cancer. Write a poem about a fight you or someone you love has struggled to win.

We had just graduated 8th grade ...
On to high school, we had it made!
Then came the night of our graduation dance.
Talk to a cute girl, this may be your final chance!

I looked for my good friend Brian ...
Never realizing he was close to dying.
He went to the hospital complaining of a stomach pain.
We never thought it was serious, deep in our brain.

Liver cancer is what he had.
It was an understatement to say that we were sad.
Sick, mad, angry, and scared.
These were just some of the feelings, because for him, I cared.

One transplant, two transplants, and then number three.
Brian hung in there ... his goal was to be free.
He eventually lost the fight for his life.
He showed incredible bravery in his strife.

He was far too healthy, too good, to leave us so soon.
I often times think about him when I stare at the moon (true, by the way).
He taught us a lesson at a very young age.
Don't take life for granted - the end you can never gauge.

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Song of the Week ...

My wife has become a HUGE ... I mean HA-UGE Lady Gaga fan. After seeing her ridiculous performance at the Grammy's, I immediately took a disliking to her. So, when my wife bought Gaga's new CD, it turned my stomach a little. However, after the eleventy-millionth time my wife played the new cd, I came to a conclusion ... no, Lady Gaga is not my cup-of-tea, but her music really isn't all that bad.

One song I particularly like is Poker Face - It has all the ingredients required for a song to get stuck in your head ... Catchy chorus? Check! Lyrics that are easy to repeat? Check! Toe-tapping beat? Check! Plus, the song is sort of about poker ... sort of! Really, it's using poker terms to "discuss" loves/sex. But, at the very least, it's not being as blatant as other songs out there.

Here's the thing about Gaga - she writes her own music. I can respect that. Also, she has a powerful female voice ... not a girly annoying voice like Brittany. No, I'd never see her in concert. I don't think I can see anyone in concert with the name "Gaga." But, she's not all that bad.

Here's the video, in case you are interested.

Monday, December 07, 2009

Dope or Nope

All of this "publicity" around Tiger Woods has gotten ... well ... a little supersaturated, hasn't it? Tiger made a comment I found fascinating - claiming that everybody has a right to privacy ... which I guess is technically true. However, if you are the most famous/popular "athlete" on the planet, that privacy probably doesn't go much past the front door of your mansion.

Here's the thing. I think Tiger felt he was invincible ... that he could do whatever he wanted without consequences. This seems to happen to most pro athletes (at least the elite ones). Michael Jordan went through this. So did T.O., Kobe and Vick. These superstars have gotten so used to people looking the other way, and kissing their butts, that they buy into the "dream."

Tiger's image will most certainly take a hit in the short-run, but I'm guessing in a few years, most people will forget about it, much like the forgot about Kobe's hideous actions in Denver (seriously, look at all of the endorsements Kobe has again!).

Here's the dope or nope - A superstar (whether athlete or actor) gives up his/her right to total privacy. What are your thoughts?

Sunday, December 06, 2009

80's Corner

Remember the battle between VHS and Beta that took place in the 1980's? It's not all that different than the HD-DVD vs. Blue Ray battle that took place recently. However, unlike the recent victory, Sony lost out big-time with the Beta. It's kind of interesting, I think - considering Beta's picture clarity was about 4 times better than VHS, and the Beta-Max tape was much more compact than the VHS tape.

However, Sony made a big mistake in it's approach. Sony ignored making it easy to service the Beta players ... one would have to ship the player to Japan to have it fixed ... certainly not convenient, and very pricey too. Not to mention, VCRs were a lot cheaper than Sony's Betamax system.

Funny that I don't remember anybody who owned a Betamax. My friend Davers's parents were the first people I knew to get a VCR. It was a top-loader, and I thought it was the coolest thing ever. You could record shows and watch them whenever you wanted?!?!? Was this even legal?!?!? My parents got a VCR in the mid-80's, and I remember going to the supermarket on Thursday evenings to rent a movie ... then, eventually "graduating" to going to BlockBuster video ... this was like VHS heaven! But, I digress.

Seems to me that Sony learned its lesson the second go-around!

Here is a Betamax commerical ... notice the bartender ... it's Nathan Lane!

Saturday, December 05, 2009

Fast Food Corner

I had the pleasure of taking my wife to a Sonic Drive-In a few weeks ago ... it was her first experience at a Sonic, and folks, she was quite impressed. She took quite a few photos to "document" the experience, and joked that this was all in the name of research for my blog. Let's take a look at her work:

This is a picture of me, my brother and his wife eagerly awaiting our food at Sonic (no, we didn't stay in our cars - the weather was too good).

So many choices!!!!

My wife gave the cheesy tots a huge thumbs up! My wife is a sucker for cheese!

My burger was delicious, but as you can see, the roll was crumbly and fell apart too easily.

We loved the happy-hour drink specials at Sonic ... no, there isn't any alcohol, but they have fantastic fountain sodas!

All in all, we gave it a thumbs up, and wish Sonic would open a drive-in closer to our house!

Friday, December 04, 2009

Weird News

It didn't take long for the Tiger Woods jokes to start flying around - my favorite one was this: "Tiger crashed into a fire-hydrant, flew through the windshield, hit a tree, and landed 3 inches from the cup."

1. On a British town that has started wrapping its lightposts up in thick wool sweaters so drunken students don't hurt themselves when they walk into them.
"Florida State is jealous!"

2. On a couple that got married in a Best Buy line on Black Friday.
"I hope the store put wool sweaters up on the lightposts in the parking lot!"

3. On a University that's looking to hire someone to research lap dances.
"They've collected just under a billion applications so far."

4. On a woman accused of calling in a bomb threat to Miami International Airport with the alleged intention of delaying her boss' flight:
"Either this boss is giving this secretary really good bonuses, or this secretary is dumber than a box of rocks."

5. On a grumpy Santa getting the boot for being so miserable he left children in tears during an appearance at a festive lights switch-on.
"I guess he wasn't in the most "tree-mendous" of moods ... get it?"

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Weekly Homework Assignment

It's time once again for Mama Kat's Weekly Homework Assignment. This week, I chose the following prompt: Book review time! What winter read has you snuggled in and turning pages?

I normally don't read many books ... at least not books you'd be interested in. However, a friend and coworker of mine let me borrow a book a couple of months ago ... but, because I have a large "waiting list" of books next to my bed, I only recently started got around to reading it.

The book is called "Breaker Boys. The NFL's Greatest Team and the Stolen 1925 Championship," by Devid Fleming. Surprise, surprise! I'm reading a book about sports - who would've thunk it? Truth be told, I think many of you would really get a kick out of it.

The book is about a long forgotten NFL football team called the Pottsville Maroons - that's right, the same small Pennsylvania town known for Yuengling Lager also once sported an NFL football team ... and not just any NFL football team, but a team worthy of an NFL championship. In fact, the team technically won the NFL championship, but had to forfeit it, because it also played a college football team - not just any college football team, but the famed Notre Dame Fighting Irish (and actually won).

You see, back in the 1920's, college football teams were far superior to the rag-tag NFL football teams. The NFL was really just a renegade league that seemed to be held together on the edges by duct-tape. The book delves into the creation of this dominant team and the circumstances around it. The Maroons' victory over the Irish began to legitimize the NFL, but sadly also spelled the downfall of the Maroons as the NFL forced the Pottsville to forfeit their title (because of some sort of turf-war resulting from the game against the Irish).

If you ever get the hankering to read a good sports book, this might be the one - pretty easy read, and a fascinating story.

Dope or Nope

Black Friday - the midnight sales. The lines wrapped around stores like Best Buy, Target, and Walmart at 4:00 in the morning. People sleeping out for these "door-buster" sales in which the really, really good items are gone the second the store opens. The traffic, the nightmares in the parking lots. The disheveled look of the stores minutes after opening. The abandoned shopping carts littering almost ever aisle.

Is this really the start of the Christmas season? Shouldn't it be a little more peaceful or positive? I've tried going out on Black Friday a couple of times - and I refuse to do it anymore (well, at least the 5:00 AM thing). It is a real test to your patience ... a test I almost failed numerous times.

It's a big NOPE for me.

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Song of the Week

As my wife and I were driving home from outlet shopping in Rehoboth, Delaware, a song came on the radio that immediately whisked me back in time ... to a time when I was a middle-school student ... an awkward one at that ... at one of our middle-school dances in the gym of my school. The song - Careless Whisper by Wham (not that awful remake that's currently polluting our airwaves).

Sure, the song is certainly effeminate, and probably brings in to question the sexual orientation of any male who enjoys it, but I digress ... The memories from middle school dances are what I'm focusing on.

Man, the stress anytime a slow song was being played. "Who should I ask to dance?" "Do you think she'll say yes if I ask her?" "God, I hope THAT girl doesn't ask me to dance! It could ruin my street-cred." Some of these thoughts were going through my head as I sat at one of the cafeteria tables in the back corner of the gym, enjoying my orange drink and chocolate chip cookie, trying to think up new diarrhea jokes with my other dorky friends.

There were really only about 10 girls you wanted to slow dance with, and if you hesitated even for just a few seconds, they were taken. Folks, I'm telling you, it was a super-stressful time. Songs like Careless Whisper, One More Night, and the king of all slow songs - Stairway to Heaven. If you could score a slow dance during Stairway to Heaven with one of the hot girls, you were the talk of the Middle School. That song was like 8 or 9 minutes. When the song was over, you'd strut off the dance floor, into the cafeteria, and get yourself another well-earned cup of orange drink whilst high-fiving your friends.

Ah, the memories!