Sunday, October 31, 2004

This. Sucks. Ass.

Hooray! It's one of my least favorite days of the year!

I absolutely hate "falling back." After gradually losing a minute or two of daylight every evening, in the span of one day it starts getting dark an HOUR earlier.

Yes, it's now pitch black before I even leave work, and it's going to stay that way for about six months.

Thursday, October 28, 2004

Dude. Sweet.

First, OSU and Michigan come to their senses.

Now the end of the world is upon us.

Congratulations, Boston. It's gotta be one hell of a party there tonight.

Tuesday, October 26, 2004

Lookin' for a good time, sailor?

I hope it was worth it.

Ohio State and Michigan got about a half-million dollars each for whoring out 100 years of the greatest rivalry in sports. I know it sounds like a nice chunk of change, but what they gave up wasn’t equal in value to what they got back.

They gave up honor, tradition and any last vestiges of the antiquated notion that anything is more important than money in the big business of college sports.

In return, they got a few lousy bucks to pay for some university real estate deals, athletic scholarships and something for the library.

Considering the fact that we’re always told that the OSU athletic department is self-sufficient (i.e. they make enough money to cover their expenses) and has been for seven years now, I’m not sure why there’s such a need for scholarship money.

Just this summer, the athletic department boasted that it was expecting to put about a million dollars into its “rainy day” fund, pushing that account to about $5.5 million. This is not a school that is out of money and about to cut its football program, that needs to do something desperate. Hell, this school isn’t even about to cut it’s women’s pistol team.

As for the other stuff? That’s not the athletic department’s problem. Yes, it’s nice, but you don’t need to sell your soul to make a nice contribution.

Think about it; if you were living comfortably off of your normal work income, would you go stand on a street corner late at night in a short skirt and fishnet stockings just to make sure you could give a little something extra to a charity group? Of course not.

It’s somewhat appalling that neither OSU nor Michigan apparently learned anything from this summer’s ill-fated partnership between movie promoters and Major League Baseball.

You might remember that. They sold ads on the bases, fans revolted and MLB killed the deal. Why, if that earned such a powerful backlash, would this be viewed as a good idea a matter of a few short months later?

Here’s the really ridiculous thing; let’s say OSU and Michigan signed on for twice as much money as they’re getting right now, and each ended up pocketing a million bucks or so over the two-year deal.

If the athletic directors had simply come to the fans before signing their souls away, they could have raised the money with their dignity intact.

All they had to do was ask, “if you had to choose between whoring out the rivalry to some soulless corporation, or paying an extra 10 bucks to get into the OSU-Michigan game every year, which would you pick?”

I guarantee that both schools would have easily sold out their stadiums at that higher price. With 100,000 fans paying an extra 10 bucks to get in… voila. You’ve got one million bucks every year to split between the schools.

In fact, I’d be willing to mail a check for $10 to Andy Geiger right now if he cancelled the deal. I bet thousands of other people would, too.

Unfortunately, I don’t think it’s going to happen. In all likelihood, greed is going to win out over tradition, just like it usually does.

OSU and Michigan almost certainly won’t back out of the deal. So what does that leave?

If you don’t think I’ve dedicated myself to personally trying to kill SBC’s business and make them rue the day they signed on for this deal… well… you don’t know me very well.

For example, did you know that in the latest J.D. Power & Associates rankings, SBC and its affiliates (SBC Yahoo internet providers, Cingular wireless phones) ranked average or below average in every category according to their Ohio customers?

Local service: Check
Long Distance (Bundled): Check
Dial-up Internet: Check
High-Speed Internet: Check
Wireless: Check

Also, SBC also acquired Ameritech in 1999, meaning these are the same people who were ordered to pay more than five million dollars to Ohio consumers a few years back because of dreadful customer service.

Good folks.

This average or below average company just wrote a check to become part of the greatest rivalry in sports. Sure, it probably helps boost their sagging image. But I bet everyone involved was too busy imagining themselves rolling around in all that money to even consider what this does to the image of the game?

This is the company whose CEO could very well end up on television during the game, standing on the sidelines talking about how wonderful his company is and how excited they are "to be a part of this wonderful rivalry."

You’ve seen those dreadful interviews with corporate executives during bowl games, and you know just how ridiculous they are. The guy has nothing to say and just prattles on endlessly like an idiot because he bought his way onto TV.

You’ve probably also seen how sponsors get to paint their logos right on the grass of the field. There was a 10-yard long chip company logo painted on the grass at the Fiesta Bowl during the national championship.

SBC slaps an even bigger logo on the field of another of their properties, the Cotton Bowl.

We’re told that the field won’t be painted, but rest assured, I’ll be watching the stadium webcams very closely the day before the Michigan game. If there’s a company logo painted on the grass, I’m grabbing a couple buckets of green paint and fixing the problem.

Someone’s got to protect the dignity of this series, and its clear that the people in charge will be too busy counting their cash to do so. I’m confident that I’ll get bailed out in time for kickoff.

I don’t know whether the stupid guy on TV is part of the deal, and I know the ugly logo defacing the field supposedly isn’t. Frankly, it’s almost irrelevant, because if it’s not part of this deal it almost certainly will be in the future.

Welcome to the slippery slope of selling out, and after a series of baby steps over the last decade, OSU and Michigan both took a huge leap this week.

This is on par, or perhaps even worse that naming a new arena after a crappy furniture store instead of a legendary basketball coach. Not that anyone would do something as ridiculous as that.

If you’d asked me this time last week whether Ohio Stadium would ever be renamed after a corporation, I would have said no. Now I’m not so sure. If someone wrote a big enough check (eight zeros?), you might get to hear Brent Musberger waxing poetic about Wendy’s Stadium, the big horseshoe on the banks of the Olentangy.

Or if Planters offered up enough cash, would OSU consider putting “Mr. Peanut” stickers on the players’ helmets for big plays?

It sounds ludicrous, but now that the price has been set on something as central to Buckeye football as the Michigan game… can you really say it can’t happen? More importantly, can you believe the folks in charge when they say it won’t happen?

Think about it; one of those "get cash fast" places seems like a perfect fit for the basketball meetings between the two schools.

Maybe Michigan and Michigan State could sell out their game to the Big Brothers/Big Sisters foundation, in honor of the programs’ relative positions in the state.

The people who made this deal sold more than the naming rights to a football game. They sold their pride, their class and the last notion of the purity of college sports.

I hope it was worth it.

Sunday, October 24, 2004

Live from New York...


(deep breath)


(deep breath)


Ashlee Simpson, meet Sinead O'Connor. She used to have a career before SNL, too.

Thursday, October 21, 2004


If I was running the Red Sox P.R. office today, I think there's about a 103% chance that I'd issue this press release.

"We understand that George Steinbrenner must be embarrassed, frustrated and disappointed by his team's failure in the ALCS. Unlike the Red Sox, his guys chose not to go the extra distance for their fans in New York. It is understandable, but wrong, that he would try to deflect the accountability for his mistakes onto others (such as Brian Cashman and Joe Torre) and to a best four-of-seven system for which he voted in favor. It is time to get on with life and forget the sour grapes."

Something to think about...

You can root for whoever you want, but this thread on SOSH should probably let you know who you SHOULD be rooting for. I'm sorry, but that's pretty damn cool to think about.

By the way, Game 7 is in the 7th inning right now, and if you think I'm going to screw this up by saying it's anything close to over, you're nuts.

Wednesday, October 20, 2004

In order: Three Mile Island, Chernobyl...

and Yankees fans right now. In that order of severity.

I'm almost giddy at the thought of 10 million Yankees fans in the New York area in out-and-out panic mode right now.

I've made a point of reading the Boston Herald online all week just to get a feel for what's going on in Boston, but I skipped that entirely this morning, just to enjoy the New York meltdown.

Watching last night's game, when the fans started throwing crap on the field, it looked like a bunch of spoiled babies throwing a tantrum. How could anyone outside of a 75-mile radius of NYC want these assholes to win?

Monday, October 18, 2004


OOOOOOOOh my... this is gonna be a long season.

Wednesday, October 13, 2004

See ya later, SUX0RZ!!11!1!

I just got in on the ground floor of this incredible investment opportunity.

This Nigerian chap just e-mailed me for the 12,000th time this month to offer me the chance to take home millions of dollars. All I had to do was put up a few measly thousands to cover a transaction fee. See... the money's just sitting in this account. And now it's all mine.

I bet you all wish you had been nicer to me.

Tuesday, October 12, 2004

And then there were four...

The Braves have once again done their annual "beat the Mets, win the division, shit the bed in October" routine to perfection.

That leaves three teams I wouldn't mind seeing win and the Yankees.

The Red Sox have that obvious 1918 thing going, and while their fans can be whiny bitches, they are at least loyal.

The Astros have been crap for 40 years now (came into the league in 1962, hadn't won a playoff series until tonight) so their fans are clearly due.

The Cardinals have almost certainly the best, most passionate and knowledgable fans in the game.

The Yankees suck. I hate them and want them to die. If the Red Sox beat them in the ALCS, I would be willing to pay $100 for the privledge of just once watching a tape of an iso of Steinbrenner during that entire final game. I am also eager to watch him dismantle a $200 million ballclub this winter, and try to rebuild it into an entirely different $220 million ballclub overnight, like a fantasy league with no keepers.

Please, please, please... let it be anybody but the Yankees.

Monday, October 11, 2004

They always die in threes...

First it was OSU's chance of a bowl played somewhere nicer than El Paso.

Then today it was Christopher Reeve.

And just minutes ago, I heard about Ken Caminiti.

What can we learn from all of this? Drugs are bad, horseback riding is bad, and the Buckeyes are bad.

Friday, October 08, 2004

The two best discoveries of the year...

With Christmas around the corner and plenty of people wondering what to ask for, I just felt like sharing two of the greatest things I've found this year.

1) TiVo. Actually, I have a ripoff version; it's a computer running Windows Media Center with a built-in DVD burner. I heard lots of people talking about how TiVo would absolutely change the way you watch TV, but I thought it was crap. It's 100% true. I've started turning on the TV at the start of a show, pausing the live TV and doing something else for 10-12 minutes, then coming back, hitting play and watching it like it's live. The only difference is I can fast-forward through commercials and will end up finishing the show at the same time as everyone else. No more running to the bathroom or missing crap if the phone rings. Just pause the TV. I would have missed the winning goal in Game 7 of the Stanley Cup finals because of a phone call, except I paused it and was able to watch it as-live just a few minutes after it happened.

2) On-line banking. This doesn't cost anything, so it's not much of a Christmas present. I just switched from National City to Net Bank a few months ago and can't imagine ever going back. Easily the best feature is on-line bill paying. You might have seen the commercial where the woman pays all her bills on-line while filling up the bathtub. It's actually easier than that. Once you set up all your monthly bills (mortgage, utilities, insurance, etc) you just punch in the amount of the bill and click "pay." No more writing out checks, buying stamps, and running to the post office. It EASILY saves me an hour a month.

Any other suggestions?

Thursday, October 07, 2004

This story has it all...

I mean... gay magicians, a driveby, a former NFL place kicker... what else could you want?

Wednesday, October 06, 2004

I laughed and I laughed.. then I laughed some more.

I don't even know where to begin with this one.

On Fark today, there's a headline that reads, "Roses are red, my Johnson's chartreuse, STD e-cards have made their debuts."

The article it links to is here.

Here's the thread responding to the article, including some absolutely classic poems, as well as a look at the STD e-cards.

And here's a picture posted in that thread that just made me laugh.

Gettin' yo learn on...

I found this article to be tremendously interesting.

Combining it with this little ditty from our good buddies at Snopes... and most of the crap I thought I knew, I didn't really know. Or something like that.

And yes, I'm going to be a surrogate Red Sox fan for the month of October. I make no claim to be a legitimate fan, of course. As a New York Rangers fan, I just happen to have experienced the relief of watching a team win its first championship since the Bronze Age, and wish it upon all the other long-suffering schmucks as well.

Looks good on you, though...

Rodney Dangerfield died on Tuesday.

What a crappy thing to find out from the blinking orange light of the AP wire's "Urgent" service. I honestly sat looking at that brief note for about a minute, getting all bummed out.

Then I decided to post a big picture of him from Caddyshack on here as a loving tribute. But that bastard Tony beat me to it.

So I guess the only thing I can do is to pass on some advice about heaven to Rodney.

I think this place is restricted, Wang, so don't tell them you're Jewish.

Saturday, October 02, 2004

Sharks with freaking laser beams...

After Mount St. Helens threw its little hissy fit today, I hope that I wasn't the only person walking around all day saying "liquid hot magma" and giggling like a schoolgirl.

Not that it matters. I'm about to walk out of work and head for a weekend of Buckeye football and general debauchery with college buddies in the great city of Chicago.

You could light my computer on fire right now and I wouldn't give a crap. I've written some free verse to celebrate the occasion.

Football, football.
College football.
Chicago, college friends.
4 am last call.
Weekend to remember.
But I probably won't.
Good times.

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