Monday, February 18, 2013

SatNav: The Real Story of Paul Scholes (Part 2)

Here lies part 2 in the epic saga. Included are very British names, very old cars, and very sophisticated medical terms.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Things I Ponder at 2:00 AM

Why do we say that we're having sex "with" someone, but making love "to" someone? The phrase "having sex" suggests a much shallower emotional bond than "making love," but the preposition "with" seems much more consensual and less one-directional than "to."

Saying you're making love "to" someone implies that they're the direct object, and you're just doin' em. Not the image you want to conjure up if you're going for the whole "making love" thing.

I think that we should switch these two prepositions so they're used with the other phrase.

That's all.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

SatNav: The Real Story of Paul Scholes (Part 1)

This is the first in a series of short stories I'll be writing about a detective. This man has one life goal: to uncover the real truth behind the magical talent of one Paul Scholes. How is he so good? Why is he such a private person? Why does he have no middle name?

The truth will be revealed.

A Few Things We Learned From "Snowpocalypse 2013"

I spent Friday night through Tuesday morning holed up at my friends' house in Hull. Here are some observations, discoveries, and inside jokes that happened.

  1. Hull has a very resilient power grid. 
  2. Never use the ice scraper attachment to scrape the body of your car.*
  3. Beirut can be played by lantern light. 
  4. The film Act of Valor has a lot of American flags, a fair amount of terrible acting, and quite a few awesome scenes.
  5. When in doubt, use a racial slur.**
  6. NBA 2K13 is what's hot in the streets. 
  7. So is "The Harlem Shake."
  8. A sun porch can double as a walk-in refrigerator. 
  9. Sometimes, you just forget how to eat.***
  10. There are good nights and bad nights at the table. 
  11. A big empty jug of protein powder can be recycled into something very useful. 
  12. James Harden, Monta Ellis, or Kobe Bryant is your best bet to score 40+.****
  13. Hockey is a thinking man's card game. 
  14. Paranormal Activity 3 puts 50% of audience members to sleep. 
  15. Don't punch walls. 
  16. Honey Bunches of Oats (refer to #5) can be crushed up and used quite nicely as breading for chicken parm. 
  17. On a scale of 1-sandwich, I'd have to say about an 8.5. 
  18. It's cool if two people sleep in Ben's bed.
  19. Even if neither of them is Ben. 
  20. Beer cartons make good kindling. 
  21. You should be on drugs to enjoy the movie The Fall.*****
  22. Bitches be like what (refer to #5). 
  23. Always double-check the caterpillar.******
  24. Jeebus H. Malone. 
  25. Crescent rolls and bacon. All day and all night.
*Especially if it's new. 
** This only applies if you're a famous rapper and the slur in question refers to the race to which you belong.
***Even if you just bought everyone's dinner.
****MJ isn't fair.
*****We weren't.
******To me, it looks like a caterpillar. Call it what you want. 

Monday, February 4, 2013

Two Things About the Super Bowl

First, that was the most atrocious goal-line play calling in the history of the NFL by the 49ers.

Let's look at the four plays San Francisco ran when they needed a touchdown from the 6(ish) yard line with inside four minutes left.

1st down: Run up the gut. 2 yards. Predictable and easily stopped by Baltimore's fat old linebacking core.
2nd down: QB sprint right, hoping for some Montana to Clark magic. Effectively eliminates half the field, gives Kaepernick no chance to break for the endzone because every single player is on the right side of the field and it's just a scrum
3rd down: A pass into the flat to a double-covered Michael Crabtree, who even if he had caught it would have been tackled at the three.
4th down: A stupid fade pattern to Crabtree that was pretty much the lowest-percentage play possible under the circumstances.

At no point did the Niners try to misdirect the old, tired Ravens, as they had on Frank Gores earlier TD. At no point did they try to let Kapernick use his legs to scramble for six, the way he had earlier in the game. Just miserable horrendous game-losing coaching by the 49ers.

Secondly, watch 84 for the Ravens win the Super Bowl for them with EASILY the most blatant hold that has ever been perpetrated on an NFL field. He holds onto 24 in red like he's the mother of a four-year-old who's just spotted an ice cream truck and tries to run across 6 lanes of traffic to get there.

There's also a MAJOR hold on the far left of the screen as well, but it's not as long and egregious and play-altering as the 84-24 debacle. I will always remember this play, and when my kids ask me how the Ravens won this Super Bowl, I'll tell them (correctly) that they cheated. 

Update: My friend Albie the Racist Dragon alerted me to the fact that holding wouldn't matter in this scenario: "The only thing is, the holding penalty would not whistle the play dead, meaning that the punter could still burn the clock. The penalty for holding in the endzone? A safety. So pretty much Harbaugh ran this play telling everyone to hold because regardless of it being flagged or not, the time would run off the clock."

I stand (sit) corrected. Now when my kids ask how the Ravens won, I'll just give them this piece of advice: "Never get yourself into a situation where the other team's coach is encouraging them to cheat. It most likely means that all hope is lost."

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Friday, February 1, 2013

Ray Bradbury is Amazing

I just discovered Ray Bradbury within the past few months. I wish I knew him as more than the guy who wrote "Fahrenheit 451" while I was still in school, because I would have told every person I passed on the street to read his work. His books are incredible, whether sci-fi ("Something Wicked This Way Comes") or not ("Death is a Lonely Business"). He has the ability to describe things in very basic language and few words, and simultaneously give the reader an incredible emotional response. 

This passage is from one of his short stories, where the main character has lost everything and lives only with his many dogs and assorted animals. Despite his situation, he is the only happy man in the story because he is a singer, and he goes around town singing to everyone while they all watch.

"'What do I have that I can let people take away without hurting me? What can I give that I can still keep?'

And the answer, of course, was his talent.

My talent! Thought Pietro. The more you give away, the better it is, the more you have. Those with talent must mind the world."
It's these kinds of observations and comments that make Bradbury so special. It's the same thing with a good comedian. They bring things to your attention that you already knew, but couldn't articulate. Next time you're at the local library (if you still go to those things), pick up a book of his short stories. You'll be happy.