Wednesday, December 23, 2009

There's been a mix up somewhere deep inside

With visions of sugar plums dancing in my head I'll drag my lame ass to work through the holidays once again. My patience with this sort of thing is flagging. But whatever, who wants to hear me bitch about work. I bore myself with it sometimes. Can't help it tho, it's hard to get over it when you keep getting dicked over. I mean I stayed at the office for 50+ hours last weekend thanks to snow, sleeping on the couch. Now it's Xmas and New Year's and I get to work through both. It's even supposed to freezing rain on Xmas Day so I may have another day sleeping on the couch, which will suck.

Moving on, I watched a ton of movies this weekend. Tyson, the documentary on the former heavyweight champ, which was fantastic. Mike Tyson doing some reflection and introspection punctuated by his fights, foibles and foul mouth. Good viewing. Also watched Barton Fink, which was good. Not my fav. Coen Brothers movie, think The Big Lebowski holds that title (although Raising Arizona is in the running.)

I watched a ton of other stuff too, but I think it's bed time so I can get started on my grueling finish to 2009. I'll be glad to see this year end. Aside from the Steelers and Penguins winning championships it's been a fucking dreadful year.

Stay tuned, I've been working my way through some of the 2009 albums I missed and am prepping my best of list. I know you've all been waiting to see a list of bands you don't know or care about.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

One last day of freedom

Wow, so my vacation is nearly over. How did that happen? I did have a good time. Actually did some socializing. It was nice to be out on a weekend night interacting with friends. I could get used to that, although I'd better not since I won't be doing it again for months, probably.

Spent way too much money, did a bunch of Xmas shopping, watched a ton of movies (I'll get to some of those later), played some games, read a book (less than I wanted, but I still got one more night) and watched some sporting events.

The book was called Hater by David Moody and had an excellent twist that I did not really expect. Recommended for anyone who loves zombie-esque books (more 28 Days Later than Living Dead.) I'm also reading Julia Child's My Life In France and is wonderfully warm and interesting memoir. I'm reading that because I watched Julie and Julia, which was also warm, like so many of Nora Ephron's movies.

I also rewatched Star Trek (beautiful) and Sunshine (still more beautiful.) Both are awesome. Fahrenheit 451 directed by Francois Truffant, which was good. Not great, but captured the book and I liked the ending. Also watched The Host, a Korean movie about a monster. Strange, but interesting.

I just watched World's Greatest Dad, the new movie by Bobcat Goldthwait starring Robin Williams. Very dark humor... very. So good, if you are into twisted tales about suicide.

Sportswise it's been a rough week. The Steelers lost their fourth in a row to Cleveland, which is just sad. I know I'm not allowed to complain, since they won the Super Bowl last season, but it's hard to watch a my team tank like this. Especially since I know they have the talent to be good. On top of that The Evil Penguin has lost four in a row as well and removed all hope of a playoff berth in fantasy football. This last week's loss was particularly straining since I put up a huge number and would have beaten anyone else I played, except the guy I played. Lucky Breaks strike again.

One positive note is that the Pittsburgh Penguins blasted Philadelphia 6-1 last night and are on top of their division and a mere 1 point back from the top of the conference. I'm feeling the hockey love now. Here's hoping they can keep it up.

Anyway I have one more day off and I'm not sure how I'm going to spend it. I'm debating staying in and not doing a damn thing. But I may want to go out, not sure. Gonna play it by ear. I'm hoping Amazon sends me my Inglourious Basterds Blue Ray, but high volume at the post office may slow things down. I also need to wrap some Xmas gifts, which I'm kinda dreading, honestly. But it has to be done. Anyway, one day more of fun, then back to the mind numbing grind.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

The vacation dilemma

Soooo, I bought a PS3 the other day. Basically for the Blue Ray player, but the games potential is cool, as well. Still, I guess my 360 got jealous and decided to fuck up my Modern Warfare 2 disc and now, won't read it. I played for like three hours last night and 2.5 hours in it tells me it can't read my disc. I eject and try to play again. No problem. Play a little longer and move on. Go back tonight and, boom, it won't read it at all and I find it has some stress grooves on the inner circle. Total suckjob.

So now I'm faced with a conundrum. Should I go ahead and trade in my current XBox and get a new one or should I hold off on it. Scared it may fuckup my other games, so I can't really see playing my stuff on it. But it's Xmas and I'm not sure I need to drop the cash I'd have to shell out to get a new one. It's frustrating. Also I'm probably not gonna be able to trade in my MW2 disc and a $60 game becomes a coaster. Bummer.

But at least I'm on vacation... where I have nothing major to do and have to decide between staying in and spending little cash or going out and entertaining myself and dropping major funds. If I don't go out I feel like I have no life whatsoever. If I do I feel guilty for spending too much money. It's no win.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Silenced FAMAS to the dome

I'm now hooked on the Modern Warfare 2 multiplayer. I finally beat the single player, which was fun, but such a goofy plot. But tonight the multiplayer roped me in good. Crushing my enemies, seeing them driven before me and hearing the lamentation of thier women was nice. Although I was actually listening to my Ipod and not the lamentation. What can you do.

Now I get to work through the holiday, wooo. My cold has struck again, or maybe I've got a new one. Either way my face is a fountain of mucus. It's unpleasant. Bleh.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Wall of cocks sequence woulda blown peoples minds.

Been quiet here. Between my constant hacking cough and the mind-numbing nature of my life it's been pretty quiet. I've been mostly keeping a low profile, work, sleep, work, sleep. Throw in a couple of movies here and there and that's it. Shit, what the hell have I been doing? I don't even remember. I did speak of the mind-numbing before and here's an illustration.

I did pick up Modern Warfare 2, which is good, so far, but I haven't been much in the mood for shooting things. Video games just haven't been doing it for me lately. Been more in the book mode, of late. I re-read the last couple of Wheel of Time novels and am halfway through the most recent, The Gathering Storm. It's good, although I do have some questions about the way things are going and how they would be different if Robert Jordan were still alive. But all told, it's not too different from what I'd expect from him. Although turning the final novel into the final three novels does still annoy me a little.

I'm watching Californication, season 2, which is good so far. And I've been watching season 2 of My Name is Earl, which I'm enjoying. I am trying to wring the enjoyment out of the DVDs before syndication annoys the fuck out of me at work, which will take less than three months, I promise. Both the first five seasons of Scrubs and Two and A Half Men are really hard to watch these days. It's even worse with shows that I didn't like initially.

I have been listening to a lot of music. Loads of end of decade lists with stuff I hadn't heard of before that I've been exploring, plus a ton of new releases that merit interest. A few notables are:
  • Them Crooked Vultures: Such a Trip album. It's good. I enjoy it a lot.
  • The Avalanches - Since I Left You: Quality electronic album. Loads of samples jammed together into a glorious hodgepodge.
  • Fuck Buttons - Tarot Sport: The more I listen to it, the more it grows on me, although I still prefer Street Horrrsing.
  • Built to Spill - There Is No Enemy: Magnificent. Love the guitar.
  • Jay Z - The Blueprint: I'm working my way up to the new album, Blueprint 3.
  • The Naked Trucker and T-Bones: Love me some Dave Koechner and I decided to download this gem this week on a whim.
  • Vivian Girls - Everything Goes Wrong: Might have mentioned this before, but I love this album and the girls who made it.
There is more on the way in this vein coming. I got a lot of new music to peruse. So stay tuned for my useless bullshit.

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Bed ridden

I'm just starting to recover from either a cold or the flu, whatever. Some debilitating illness that has made me feel like shit since Friday night. I'm definitely not over it and it's been a pain in the ass. It's been teasing me, I'll spend most of the evening thinking I'm recovering then, WHAM!, next thing I know I'm shivering uncontrollably and feeling like total shit. But hopefully, I'm coming back from it now. Just in time to go back to work.

The funny thing about being sick is how it affects your thought processes. I went to vote yesterday (not that it mattered) and I walk up to the table. The people there look at me, I look back and they are like "We need to see some ID." Der, like I didn't know that. Totally out of it. Synapses refuse to fire. Even they must be congested.

So my weekend has been pretty low key, laying around, watching television (again I endorse both the NFL and NHL Networks) and playing games. I'm almost finished with Brutal Legend, but the last level is quite annoying and I'm not sure I'm gonna finish it. I also played several hours of Torchlight, which is a new Diablo-esque game made by some of the same people who brought you the first two Diablo games. Only $20 on Steam. So worth it.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

disheveled brain blast

Random thoughts for this week:

  • This week in sports has a high probability to suck, between the World Series, the Steelers' bye week and all the Favre nonsense, I'm expecting to be exasperated before Sunday.
  • That said, the Penguins are fucking rolling the NHL currently and I'm enjoying it. Crosby dropped some science last night, banging out a hat trick in two periods against Montreal.
  • It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia is very good. Watched the first two seasons this weekend and it's awesome.
  • I have to work on Halloween... and every other holiday until the end of this year. My good will at work is eroding and we need to hire someone new or I may snap.
  • Read Jeff Ross' book "I Only Roast the Ones I Love" tonight and it's amusing. A lot of the stuff I've already seen in roasts rehashed, but still enjoyable.
  • Flight of the Living Dead is the most dull zombie film I've ever seen. I figured it was going to be bad, but am compelled to watch any movie with the suffix "...of the Living Dead."
  • Finally all caught up with Lost. Now I'm left feeling lost without more episodes to watch. Yesh, that's a horrible line. Still this show is amazing, I'm both happy and sad I waited this long to watch it. On one hand, woulda been cool to always be in on the zeitgeist. On the other, watching it weekly may have broken me.
  • Met Trip's girlfriend Tamara and she seems cool. They seem to be good together. Definitely a step up from his dating past. Maybe now people will stop thinking we're gay. Although Trip will have to stop blowing me for that to be totally true.
  • The Evil Penguin is ailing, losing two straight. We still have a share a spot at the top of the TLB South Conference, but it is precarious.
  • Here you will find a nice Halloween mixtape to download for free that has a nice creepy edge without being too scary or annoying. It's worth a listen.
  • Bernardo Bertollicci's film The Dreamers is worth a watch. It is a love letter to the cinema (particularly French film), a tale of a brother and sister with a disturbingly close relationship and a lot of Eve Green being naked and looking amazing.
  • I am in love with the NFL and NHL Networks. I always have something to watch now. When we finally get the high def. issue solved it will be heavenly.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Living according to dharma, or maybe just the others

Been a while since I posted, but between work and me being lazy it's been a busy time. Mostly I've been watching a lot of Lost. That show is like crack and I always seem to need another hit. Last week I watched 10 episodes in a row in a single sitting. My tendency toward slothlike behavior is astounding, I know. But yeah, I finally finished Season 4 tonight. Only one more to go and I'm all caught up. Then I'll be in the situation to have to watch the final season week to week, which will be painful, I'm sure.

I discovered tonight that I have Vs., The NHL Network and, most importantly, The NFL Network. This seems like something I should have known, but I didn't. Basically because I can't get the HD feeds and this annoyed me to the point where I stopped looking in frustration. So now I have even more things to waste my time. Woohoo.

I finished this book called The Men Who Stare At Goats, which is about the US governments research into paranormal solutions to military/intelligence problems. It's a very strange account. Lots of things brought up that seem just absurd enough to be true. It's being made into a movie and the trailer interested me and I saw the book and picked it up.

Makes you curious which of the paranormal things in the book actually work. Making goats die with your mind, psychic locating, invisibility, the death touch. Some of the products of this type of research is real. That foam they use to immobilize people, blaring loud music and flashing lights as an interrogation tactic. The idea that the whole Abu Ghraib photo debacle was actually ordered by high level intelligence officers as leverage against detained Arabs. So strange. Who knows what goes on behind closed doors... doors that require serious security clearance.

Sunday, October 04, 2009

Watch hockey you bastards

I'm in the middle of a very long work period and it kinda sucks. Ten out of eleven days... I get Tuesday off. A Place to Bury Strangers is playing in Chapel Hill that night and I want to go, but I don't know if I'll be up for that drive in the midst of all this crap. Also I'd be going alone. Oh and I have another meeting on Wed. so I get to go in early for a 13.5 hour work day. Lovely.

But that bitching is not why I'm here. I've decided to stand up and be heard. I'm going to defend hockey! The NHL season started last Thursday and it's time you took note. That's right all you haters, hockey is a great sport and here's why:

  • First of all, it's a great game. Lots of whiners complain they don't score enough, but that's what makes it exciting. That anticipation when your team gets itself into position to score and you know it may happen.
  • This goes in tandem with that great game argument, but there are some fantastic hits in hockey. These guys drill each other constantly. There's no rule that a burly defenseman can't hammer those dainty forwards, in fact it's a big part of most team's game plan to plow over those guys. Not like the NFL, of late, where you breathe heavy on a QB and it's a flag.
  • Some young players that are in the game now are showing some serious skills. Crosby, Malkin, Ovechkin. Those guys are gonna be legendary names one day and they are playing now. Enjoy it.
  • These are literally big guys with stick and blades strapped to their feet whacking a piece of frozen rubber at one another. How can that be bad?
So there ya go. I admit my enthusiasm is running high after the Penguins' Stanley Cup run last season and all the young talent on the team now. Hard not to love that, especially after so many years of no talent in Pittsburgh. It seems like feast or famine, but maybe Mario Lemieux has finally righted the ship and things will be good there.

One complaint I do have tho, is the TV contract. I hate the fact that Versus has the rights to NHL games. It seems like they'd blow that out, have games on all the time and promote the hell out of it. Do they? Nope, maybe two games a week and fucking rodeo on Saturday. Really? Fuck. The NHL would do better to simply give the rights to a couple of games a week to air on ESPN just to help ticket sales. Bah.

Anyway I'm off to fiddle with my fantasy team and hope for a win over the dreaded Danglers.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Solar Surf

The Fuck Buttons are one of my favorite new artists. Not for the faint of heart, but they do have penguins in the video! Think I may try to check them out in Chapel Hill on Nov. 5, although this will require a night off work. Maybe I'll just take a week's vacation for my birthday or something. Open invite to one and all, but I'm not sure anyone else I know will enjoy it. Philistines.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

The emerging science of teledildonics

Been a good weekend. Saw a jazz legend. Sonny Rollins was amazing. That man is 79 years old! He blows it out. His band was amazing too. Such a good time. To set the mood, we went to Mama Dip's and had soul food for the ages. So tasty. The only downside was the drive. It's just a pain in the ass to go to Chapel Hill and back. Didn't help it was rainy and foggy on the drive back. Still was good to get out of my usual routine and we had a good time. Hopefully we can do something like that again.

I have to admit I was out of my depth as far as jazz knowledge went. I basically know the old school A-list names and not much more, whereas Kevin, Jason and Jimmy know that shit back and forth. It was interesting to listen to them talk about it, but I didn't have much to add.

I picked up the new Halo game and it's ok. I miss being the Master Chief, but this game has some cool stuff. Still, having only played it a little it seems like kind of game Bungie made to satisfy a contract requirement, rather than one they were excited about. I'll give it a little more time.

I've also been watching a lot of Lost, which continues to captivate. I'm fighting the urge to go watch it now, but I think I'll catch The Ultimate Fighter and Top Chef first. I also need to watch Gran Torino, which I've had from Netflix for over a week.

Oh I've been trying to maintain a pace of reading one book a week and may have fallen a bit behind on that recently, just because of a lot of distractions. That, of course, is not counting graphic novels and it's just not the same thing. I did finish Johannes Cabal the Necromancer and it was ok, not great. Evil carnival tales are always fun.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Something that made me smile

Remember when Pittsburgh had a running game?

Bitch fest

I can not describe how much working on Sundays make my life suck. I used to have this bright beacon of hope, as Sunday started my weekend and I could spend the whole day relaxing and watching football. Now, I try to "fit in" the early game with lack of sleep and then drive to work as the second game opens and half the time I will be forced to run the late game. Then during the night game I get to watch on a 10 inch screen and try to divide my attention between it and what I'm actually supposed to be doing.

Look, I know I'm not working in a salt mine or anything, but these days it seems I have fewer and fewer things to genuinely look forward to and this takes away another of them. So now I just get to work (watch television), kill my days off (watching television) and then go back to work. Pathetic.

This feeling is exacerbated by the fact that this week I get to drive in to work on Wednesday for a meeting. Hooray. Oh and today was fucking terrible. Got my oil changed and inspection and found out I need new brake pads (and possibly rotors). Waited 45 minutes at Comcast to get a digital cable box and they don't give me the cable I need to get HD channels and got a haircut and had to listen to my stylist's baby daddy issues.

Oh and my fantasy receivers crapped out on me and Jake Delhomme helped screw me over two different ways (I started Steve Smith and Nick started the Philly D.) so the Evil Penguin starts off slow. Well assuming Nate Kaeding doesn't get nine more points tonight, which seems unlikely.

Oh and Week 2 beard update: I have trimmed it a little to make me look less homeless. It's not filling in fast enough and I still look white trashy. Also still itchy. But I will not be give in and will continue my quest to grow a decent looking beard and earn the name Beardo.

Monday, September 07, 2009

Accelerating constantly toward some null point

Today was the last Sunday of the year without NFL football. Mike described it as the worst week of the year and I'd have trouble arguing with him about it. Work tonight was mind-numbing. I know I say that a lot, but it just seemed to be moving in slow motion all night. I had a hard time focusing and was disinterested in pretty much everything on television. Brutal.

Next week I won't have enough time to keep up with everything. I never seem to tire of highlights and analysis of football. In fact, I seem to be growing ever more caught up in sports. I think this is because it's the one interest of mine that I find people to talk to about. Other stuff I enjoy I find the people I interact with to have not only no interest in them, but, often, downright dislike for them. You can't discuss a song with someone when they won't even concede it's music. But whatever, it's just a issue with my feelings of isolation. No surprises considering my job and overall lifestyle.

So I finally endured my way through work and have made it home and stuffed myself with Canadian beer and chili. Others will probably be thankful if I stay isolated tomorrow. Not gonna be pretty. Not sure what I'm gonna occupy myself with otherwise the next coupla days.

I'm currently watching this documentary "No Maps for these Territories" as I write this. Which is about the author William Gibson, his life and thoughts. He's amazing and I urge everyone to read all his books. He's got a futurist mind and some really interesting things going on in his head. He coined the term cyberspace in the 80s. That's just the start of his genius. But I think I've covered this before.

Wednesday, September 02, 2009

Fall approaches

A very low key weekend. Monday I bummed around then watched True Blood with Trip. That episode was a little blah, I'm over the crazed town thing, but the show overall is pretty awesome. Only one more new episode this season, tho.

After that I came home and watched Sword of Doom. A samurai movie starring the inimitable Toshiro Mifune. That guy is awesome. The movie was a little confusing, which may have been partly due to translation problems, but had some quality sword battles. Worth checking out if you're into such things.

I got to spend the next night at Trip's with an old friend, who has assumed the role of functional alcoholic. It's not pretty and hanging wasn't that fun. It sounds cruel, but I've spent too much time dealing with drunks to volunteer for more. Not really sure what to do about this...

Today my big project was going to Gamestop to preorder Halo:ODST and then hitting the library. Picked out a couple of interesting books. I decided to plunge into Norman Mailer's "The Executioner's Song" which is a little intimidating as it's a modern classic and like 1,000 pages long. I'm 50 pages in and so far it's good, but it's very early on.

I also finished George Mann's "The Affinity Bridge" and I loved it. Nice steampunk vibe, set in the 1800's but doesn't try to emulate the 19th century style, which I tend to find quite dry. Ohh and it has zombies, which is almost never a bad thing. I think it may be the start of a series and that seems like a good thing to me.

Now I'm watching Top Chef and sipping a nice glass of Jameson's on ice. A nice stress reliever before I head back to work tomorrow. At least I get to watch the Steelers final preseason game. Not too exciting, but preseason football is better than no football. Plus the final preseason game means we are just a breath away from the kickoff of regular season. I'm ready to make a run at a second TLB title and hopefully the Steelers can repeat as well. Not sure which one I'd like more at this point. Probably the Steelers, but I'd be fine either way. Super fine with both.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Mind infestation

So here's a quick rundown of the stuff Ive been checking out lately. I'll open with Inglourious Basterds because it's amazing. I'm a Tarantino fan from way back, and this rates as one of his best, in my opinion. I'd say third overall, after Pulp Fiction and Reservior Dogs. Kill Bill is close, but I think I prefer the Basterds. It's not the movie I expected, but it's still amazing. I could rant for hours, but I'll let it go at that.

I read a bunch of Green Lantern comics. Historically I haven't been that hyped about Green Lantern, but some of the newer stuff is pretty good. The Green Lantern Corps and Sinestro War stuff was excellent. I know, I'm approaching the highest level of nerdity here, but what can I do. Not like I have a life, may as well nerd out.

Watched Bobcat Goldthwait's Sleeping Dogs Lie. He describes it as a film with a "tasteful amount of bestiality." I'd agree. It's kinda funny and pretty fucked up. What else would you expect? Worth a watch if you're into weird.

I got the Japandroids' album Post Nothing, which I recommend. It's a duo that sounds like a full five piece rock band and they hit you with a wall of sound. I dig the frenetic pacing. I've also been giving a lot of my listening time to Patton Oswalt's new album My Weakness is Strong, which is beyond my ability to describe how funny it is.

I've also been listening to Adam Corolla's podcast, which is amusing. He's got this amusing, curmudgeonly humor I'm partial to, being a complete bastard myself.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

This is how I spent three hours on a Friday night

This gets harder every year. Every team had a solid draft. Even the autodraft didn't completely screw over VA Sixpack (although it wasn't good to him either.) Toughest draft we've had so far, easily.

But I'll put forth my best effort to make my picks relevant. In the past I've done pretty well. My first year of doing these rankings was less informative, but dead on. I believe I nailed the top three performers that season. Boom! And look that was when Adam was The Vendetta... intimidation tactic that did not pan out. Haha, good times. The 2007 rankings did not turn out near as well. Way off. Last year I got the top three correct, but had Hudson Street dead last and he was probably the top team all season (but I managed to nab him in the playoffs and then take the title, which brings me so much joy.) You'll note I've ranked myself third every year, consistency is key.

So there's your historical precedent. I'm not completely full of shit, but have been known to miss the mark plenty. It's also important to note that a good draft doesn't give you a title. It takes hours of dedication, wasting your life following NFL minutia and plugging in the right player at the right time. And, of course, the lucky breaks. I'll finish by saying that these are purely based on how I rank players, which is certainly not always (or maybe even often) correct. So here we go.

  1. Team Anderson - Apparently Mr. Anderson has forsaken his Hellraising ways, but he still had the devil's luck in the draft. His RBs are potent (probably half the league moaned when he took Steve Slaton.) He's kinda married to San Diego's passing game, but that may not be a bad thing (playing Oakland, KC and Denver is probably gonna help those rankings huh.) Personally I think TO isn't gonna be great in Buffalo, but who can say with that nutbag? So Anderson nudges out the top spot by the narrowest of margins.
  2. LEESBURG LEGHOUNDS - I gotta tell you, I'd have ranked Adam first if he hadda taken a real player instead of Knowshon Moreno. Ok, that's a little harsh, but Denver has like 10 RBs and no commitment to anyone of them. I don't believe in him. I don't. Also with only three RBs on his roster that could be a concern, but pretty nitpicky. Love his WRs (wanted Desean Jackson, you bastard.) Gonna be dangerous. Naturally he hates his draft, because he's never happy with what he's got in fantasy.
  3. FSU WARCHANT - I suspect the warchant will be heard all over the TLB field this season. Cal makes his triumphant return to the TLB league after a brief hiatus with a undeniably good draft. His WRs are impressive all the way down, his RBs all have solid upside, he starts Peyton Manning, solid bench. Damn, I keep looking for a hole to poke in this draft, but can't find one. No weaknesses.
  4. DALLAS DANGLERS - I will not make a dick joke. I will not make a dick joke. I will not make a dick joke. Okay, now that that's out of the way. Mike and I usually seem to rank players the same way. That said I won't be trading for the cursed Cedric Benson again this year. What was I thinking? Hate that he took Megatron one pick ahead of me in the second round. The big questions for the Danglers are can Warner and Tomlinson stay healthy despite Father Time knocking on their door.
  5. Evil Penguin - Tough to rate my own draft. This is the lowest I've given myself ever! What am I thinking? Gah... But, sadly, I think 5 is about right, but Kev. or Nick could easily take this spot. Dig my starting wideouts, but need MJD to come on full bore as the man in Jacksonville and Ryan Grant to stay healthy. Also wouldn't hurt to have one or two of the late round guys I took flyers on to pan out. Never know about those guys.
  6. Heavens Own - Kev's gonna bitch about not being in the top five again, but I'm not gonna rate him ahead of me (just to fuck with him basically.) I'm not sold on Ochocinco after his lackluster season last year, but I also hate the Bengals. (AFC North enmity.) His receivers are solid otherwise and his running backs are serviceable if not spectacular. Also a lot of potential upside on his bench, although Michael Crabtree has screwed his value in my opinion.
  7. Team Vipperman - Feels weird ranking Nick this low, but I don't care for a lot of his players. Reggie Bush has done nothing but disappoint and I'll have to see that change to believe it. (Of course, me writing that sentence makes it a certainty this season.) Also a big ol' ick to Braylon Edwards. He couldn't catch a cold last season. S Jax is also a injury risk (and plays in St. Louis), but I can't blame him for taking him with all that potential. The bench does hold several potential goodies that may come to fruition, so the jury is still out.
  8. Innsmouth Fisheyes - I think I may be ranking ye olde Fisheyes this low more out of habit than actual talent. He's got a nice stable of RBs (although Fred Jackson gives me a little pause after Marshawn Lynch's three game suspension.) His wides are pretty solid, although Roy Williams needs to fill TOs shoes if Innsmouth is to cast it's horrible shadow over the TLB ranks.
  9. greenlando mojens - Someone has to explain what this team name means. I got nothing and I feel like half a retard. The two-headed monster of the league up and committed themselves to the Falcons with Michael Turner and Matt Ryan. It could work out for them, but Atlanta's schedule looks pretty brutal. If I go down their roster player by player I couldn't say I dislike any particular player, but all told I just don't feel good about this draft. Just a gut feeling and clearly I listen to my gut way too much.
  10. VA Sixpack - Ahh the Sixpack, the newest member of our lovable league of lowlifes. Called away to protect and serve during the draft and forced into auto draft picks. Not what he wanted I'm sure. It coulda turned out worse. I actually kinda like his bevy of backs and would be willing to break him into the league with a nice trade for one of them for some magic beans (I'm trying to beat Mike and Adam to the punch.) His WRs scare me tho. He has three and counts Brandon Marshall (with talks of being suspended for being difficult) and Antonio Bryant (who also always seems to be difficult only with less talent) as two of them. Still, a coupla tweeks and things could turn his way.
Well that's it. I always feel like a prick rating people low, but someone has to be there. I reiterate these are just my bullshit rankings so don't go all bitchcakes on me. Here's to a good season, good fun, close games and me winning a second title. (Had to sneak that in there.)

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Prawns and prejudice

I don't know why but I can't get over the feeling that it's Monday. This suck as I feel like my weekend is going way too fast. Whatever.

I went to see District 9 and it was fantastic. Very well done and I loved the lead guy's transformation. Both literally and figuratively. I'm worried there may be a sequel and ruin it, but it was damn good by itself. A nice allegory on racism with cool special effects that didn't feel silly.

Gearing up for the TLB Draft this Friday. Feel a little unprepared, but I'm not sure what else to do. It's probably more nerves than anything, as I really would love to repeat (and become the first ever repeat champion.) But I would also like to not suck ass, that's my first goal. Also still conflicted about who I'm gonna take with the fourth overall pick. Got a coupla ideas, but no strong commitment, plus someone I don't expect to fall to me could. Argh, so much uncertainty.

I also finished this book Breathers by S. G. Browne. It's really good. Makes you empathize with the lead zombie character and his struggles. I'd recommend it to anyone who enjoys zombies with a tinge of humor and romance.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Bacon and egg sandwich

The weekend finally arrives. Finally. It was a long week, but aren't they all. I watched the end of season 2 of Friday Night Lights and am currently starting the 3rd. Good stuff, although the 2nd season's being shortened did it no favors. Still, it's good stuff.

I also watched the original Inglorious Bastards, which was serviceable. Not great, but I could definitely see the basic components that Tarantino had to work with and am stoked for his version.

Today I slept in and felt pretty shitty when I woke up. (I think that was largely due to the insane heat I was sleeping in.) So I decided to stay in today and do very little. My big accomplishment today has been making bacon and eggs. Slack, I know. So I've spent the day watching tv. Seems a lot like the things I do at work, but whatever. I also read some Green Lantern comics... yeah I'm wasting my life I know.

Tomorrow I might try to do something a little more significant. We'll see.

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Don't mess with CNR

Weird Al at his finest. Where's Jeff when I need him?

Dig, dig, dig

So I got my new fantasy football logo from Trip and it's sweet. You'll note the championship ring, to honor last season's title. Here's hoping I get to add another ring to that photo next year.

Survived the work week and then hung out with Kevin Sunday night and Monday. That was cool. We had a nice mock draft that featured lots of talk about clown rape and NFL public service announcements. Good times were had. We watched both Conference Championship games and the Super Bowl.

Tonight Trip and I went to see Funny People. I dug it, but will admit it's a little long. Still it's a nice look at a comedian, who sees everything through a comedic lens, dealing with death. It's got some great comedy and some tragic moments. There's one moment with a Warren Zevon song that's just heartbreaking. It's probably not for everyone, but I liked it.

Starting up the season season of Friday Night Lights. It's really good, started off with lots of conflict that kinda disturbed me, but that's part of the deal. Pretty sure Nick would dig this show if he had time to check it out. First two seasons are on Netflix Instant Watch, so it's free and easy. But it combines football with a high quality drama surrounding.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Vacay update

My vacation is winding down, only two days left and then back to the mindnumbing grind. But it's been pretty good so far.Went on a G-boro trip and had a decent time, although I learned to avoid Steak and Shake. (Highlights of that lesson included a super-slow wait staff, mediocre food and a waitress with a bubble butt and eyepatch.)

The highlight was get together at Mike's parents mountain place. Nick, Abby, Adam, Mike, Shannon and myself hung out, got bombed and had a delicious picnic with Kenny, Reba and Greg. Good times. I do admit that Saturday I was in total exhausted/grumpy mode. Tried to keep a stiff upper lip but after two full days of drinking and four hours of sleep on a sofa I was not feeling my best. Still was great to see everyone and it sucks I don't see those people all the time. (Which Abby will point out is partly my fault.)

Sunday I spent recovering, more or less and I also watched a bunch of Friday Night Lights, season 1 episodes. That is a really good show and feeds into my football jones just perfectly. I'll keep you posted on how I progress with the series.

Today I went to see the new Harry Potter movie with Jill. Due to some really bad planning on my part we had like 15 minutes to eat before the movie, but still had a good time. I enjoyed the movie, it didn't feel as hacked together as Goblet of Fire. Not perfect, but it's never gonna be when you've got that much iconic material to try to cram into a two hour movie (or a nearly three hour movie in this case).

Debating what I should do tomorrow. Thinking of maybe going to G-boro again, but probably shouldn't. I'll spend too much money, but my alternative may be doing very little in Martinsville. I dunno. We'll see how it goes tomorrow.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

I've a mind to eat you whole my friend

Vacation. It's upon me. Honestly I haven't been anticipating this once a ton. Don't get me wrong, I'm glad to not have to work, but my plans aren't exceptional. Still it'll be good to hang with everyone. That's always a good time. Still, I think I'm concerned about not being able to fill up the time this week and boring myself by doing the same shit I always do. But we'll see.

Today, the first day of vacation, I arose at my normal time and went out to get a bunch of errands accomplished. Got my oil changed, haircut, etc. I meant to go by the library, but didn't. Maybe tomorrow. Although I may try to do some cleaning around here. My room is a catastrophe and my car needs some attention as well.

Currently I'm watching last season's AFC Championship Game and I love it. I'm getting that football itch again and it's nice watching Pittsburgh doing it up against the hated Ravens. Also doesn't hurt that the Techmo Lucky Breaks League site has opened for business. Just 10 days away from training camps too.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Rear Naked Choke

I know it's been a coupla weeks but I've been working nonstop and feeling pretty forlorn on top of it. So the updating suffered as such. I'm only dropping this tidbit so you guys don't think I've given it up entirely. So here are a few quick notes:

  • Dinosaur Jr. is still dominating my listening. Ocean In The Way is my favorite song so far this year.
  • I'm reading Musicophilia by Oliver Sachs and it's interesting. It's a neurologist reporting what he's found about how music influences the brain. Same guy who wrote Awakenings.
  • I'm jealous of Trip's iPhone. I'm so offput I was forced to pummel him senseless in UFC Unleashed last night.
  • Tokyo Gore Police is a strange and wonderful film I would recommend to anyone not concerned with plot and in search of something bizarre that they haven't seen before.
  • Fantasy football season is almost upon us and the mechanisms of the Techmo Lucky Breaks League are grinding into gear. It's a glorious time.
That's it. I'm going to bed. I may update again once I survive through to Monday when my vacation begins. Going to slack off, see some friends and possibly drinks some beers. Looking forward to it.

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

This is what happens when you fuck a stranger in the ass!

Had a really good day yesterday. It started off a little rocky, under four hours of sleep. But I refused to let it drag me down. Trip and I rolled up to the Noke for the day. Did a little light shopping, which of course means I spent a shit ton of money. But I needed some new shirts and a Big Lebowski DVD and a BPRD comic book... Ok fine, I'm an impulse buyer, sue me. I also nearly bought some sweet Steelers mesh shorts to work out in (aka lounge my fat ass on the couch), but decided against it. Maybe in a week or two I'll go back.

What really set the day apart was going to Awful Arthur's. I'd been there before, but had not enjoyed it as much as I did today. I devoured a variety of sea dwelling creatures including oysters, calamari and crabs. It was so good, and reasonably priced. It was cheaper that Red Lobster and exponentially better. I also had a tasty beer or three. They have their own brewery and the Sunshine White Ale is delish. Goes down good while cracking crab.

Anyway once I returned home I watched The Big Lebowski again and damn it's funny. So many great lines just fly by. Love it. I also watched Season 2 of the IT Crowd, a quirky British comedy show that I dig a lot. It's about a group of misfit I.T. workers and hilarity ensues.

So yeah, I'm feeling good at the moment. It's nice since I've been awash in depression for the last coupla weeks. I also get to play social again tomorrow as Trip and I are treking to the Plaster residence for an evening of pizza and discourse. Should be fun. It's nice feeling like I have friends from time to time. It'll be short lived, tho as the next few weeks are looking to be work only weeks. But there is a vacation on the horizon. I'm trying to be upbeat, it's not a natural tendency so I have to keep fighting back my inherent negativity.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Been there all the time

I feel like shit, which comes a little surprise. It's my own fault, really, I eat too much shit. Work is kicking my ass and I just flat out tired. That said, I love Dinosaur Jr. The new album Farm is incredible. I recommend it to everyone, everywhere. J. Mascis still shreds the guitar with tasty hooks layered with shoegaze vocals and Lou Barlow brings it all to a a nice froth. Wonderful. They are this strange combination of sorrow and joy that finds a way to matter to you no matter what type of day you are having.

I'm currently watching's footage of them playing live and it's spectacular. Low fi heroes now and always. Couple that with the excellence of the new Sonic Youth album and you've almost got a 90s grunge revival. Although to be fair, Sonic Youth has been recording relavent stuff continously since the 80s. The same could be said of Lou Barlow too, so I guess it's a moot point.

I also listened to the new Dirty Projectors' album Bitte Orca and it's got some good moments, but it's odd. I like listening to it, but I'd have a hard time explaining the sound or why it sounds good to me. It's odd, but worth giving a shot.

Anyway, I'll stop jizzing all over those bands for now since the odds of anyone reading this and caring are minimal.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Busting makes me feel good

Been keeping a low profile. Haven't much felt like posting, but thought I might break my silence for another of my dull ass posts. Not a lot going on. I finished The Razor's Edge by W. Somerset Maughm. It's very good, although it does talk a bit too much about the Parisian high society and who does what there. It can get a little thick, but still worthwhile.

I'm now trying to finish Singularity Sky by Charles Stross and, so far, it's my least favorite of his books. It's got some cool ideas, but seems to meander about a lot. Also I don't care for the characters, mostly. I still dig Stross overall, but this is kinda blah.

I also finished the new Ghostbusters game today and it's lots of fun. It really feels like the Ghostbusters, which is awesome. They got all of the original cast (minus Rick Moranis and Sigorney Weaver) and that makes the game. It's not perfect, there are some glitches and some of it's just fan service and it's really short. I beat it in three nights more or less. Still definitely a fun time.

I suppose that's all. Ready for another mind numbing work week.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

The collar of shame

A few quick notes. Saw Up tonight and it was marvelous. Had a really sweet thread running throughout and I recommend it for young and old alike. There was also a Pixar short called Partly Cloudy, I think, that I may have liked more than the actual movie. We saw these in 3D and while I like 3D somewhat, I may be getting over it. It's more expensive, I gotta wear uncomfortable glasses over my regular glasses and my eyes water. Ehh.

Had lunch with Jill today, which I nearly slept through despite my best efforts. It turns out you have to set your alarm for 11:30 am to get up for lunch at 1pm. I'm a dolt sometimes. After I dropped her off back at work I got a haircut and then went to the library and spent about an hour and a half there reading.

I really love the library except for the damn people. Of course, I suppose I find most things more bearable with fewer people. But there are some really obnoxious library patrons in Martinsville. For example: the chronic cougher/hawker, the I have an objectionable ringtone and refuse to answer my phone in a timely manner despite being in a library, the elderly meanderers who talk loudly amoungst themselves and, as always, loathsome unwatched children who behave as if they are at the circus. These are a few of my least favorite things.

Now it is time for bed. Hopefully I'll be hanging with the Plasters once again, although it is contingent on their schedule being open. No guarantees there, but what can you do?

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Tremendous Dynamite

Saw The Hangover tonight and it is damn funny. I was laughing my ass off the whole damn time. So good. I won't get into details, because that can spoil the funny, but it's awesome. So good. Tomorrow Trip and I will be going to see Up, so here's hoping that's as good. Decidedly different, but good.

Last night I completed my run through the Star Trek movies and all in all I'm glad I did it. I'd say avoid Star Trek Insurrection at all costs, but Nemesis was decent. Not great, but decent. I'd definitely say I liked the old school ones more than The Next Generation films. I'm now debating whether or not to go through the tv series. May take a break and think about it first. I've still got plenty of stuff to watch, so no rush.

Speaking of things to watch I went to Brewers Movie Club tonight and bought a bunch of DVDs as they are closing for good and everything was $3. So I picked up some stuff. Just thought I'd mention it, since some of my readers are Brewers alums. The guys who did absolutely nothing, got paid for it and got free movie rentals on top of it.

I also started watching the Trueblood series, which is pretty good so far. I definitely do not mind watching Anna Paquin. Lovely. Oh and the new Eels album, Hombre Lobo is quite good. Also picked up Brian Eno's Neroli album at Amazon's MP3 site for a buck. It's one track, 57 minutes long and very relaxing. Something nice to go to sleep to. I recommend it.

Monday, June 01, 2009

Just small things

Yeah, I'm glad the work week is done. It's been a bitch this week. Actually, it hasn't been that bad, but lots of little bullshit added up into a crappy week. Work moved very slowly and I was bored a lot. The book I was reading, Palahniuk's Pygmy was just not as good as I hoped it would be. The Penguins went down 0-2 in the Stanley Cup finals (don't get me started, I loathe the Red Wings with every fiber of my being) and Lebron was knocked out of the NBA playoffs.

Yeah, I'm a Celtics fan, but if Boston can't win then I was rooting for the Cavs because you can't hate on Lebron. Also the Lakers are in the final and probably going to win, which means I have to hear Mike crow about it. Anyway, that's a lot more NBA talk than I wanted to get into.

The week kinda started bad, with me seeing Terminator Salvation. It wasn't good. I mean it had some pretty effects, but it was written for the brain dead. I'm not one of those, so it annoyed me. I would recommend you avoid this movie unless you are drunk or want to shout at the screen with your friends in a MST3K fashion.

After work I settled in with a couple of Tecates (Hellboy's favorite beer) and played the new Wolverine movie game. It's actually decent. I had some fun slashing people to death. Kinda cathartic. Just what I needed to get all that vitriol out of my system. Ok, not all the vitriol. It runs pretty deep in my bitter heart. But definitely worth the effort.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Serious nerd talk

I've been lax on my posting I know, but I've been busy. Not doing anything constructive, but busy nonetheless. I'll start with my Star Trek movie update. I'm up to the seventh Trek and they have been up and down. Wrath of Khan is a work of genius and I really dug the Search for Spock as well. But it's a bit spotty after that.

The Voyage Home annoys me with all the time travelling, save the whales, we're in the 80s nonsense and The Final Frontier was even worse. Just dreadful. The sixth movie, The Undiscovered Country was pretty damn good. Definitely worth seeing. But it was followed by Generations, which puts both the original cast in a movie with the Next Generation cast and there was too much going on. That's as far as I've gotten. Only three more to go.

In other movie news, I saw Angels and Demons and that was ok. Not great, but worth catching at some time. I'm gonna see the new Terminator tomorrow, but I have low expectations. Still my nerd cred requires that I go see it because it has robots smashing stuff.

Trip and I have been playing UFC Undistputed quite a bit. Last week I owned him so hard he threw up... ok that's a lie, but he did get all mad and walk out. Which is awesome. You have truly pwned someone when they have to leave the room. Reminded me of how I riled Adam up at Call of Duty 4 when we were seeing the Skins-Cowboys game in DC.

Sadly this week Trip's skills have improved somewhat and I didn't get to molest him as much, but I definitely gave better than I got. I took Rashad Evans and pounded Rampage into a fine paste on the mat.

Also the Penguins are bringing the pain to Carolina and I've loving it. Been watching a lot of the Pens this year. Those guys are deadly. Malkin, Crosby, Fleury, Gonchar, Satan. Good quality. The way it's looking now it could be a repeat of last year's Stanley Cup final. Hopefully with a different end result.

Monday, May 18, 2009

From Hell's heart

I'm exhausted, once again. Nothing new I suppose. It's a regular thing. But on top of it I'm feeling down. General malaise I suppose. This week wasn't particularly bad, actually. Just one of my weird mood swings.

Anyway I watched Star Trek: The Motion Picture, (the first of my voyage into Star Trek's cinematic legacy) which I had heard was terribly dull. It was definitely slow paced. The director, Robert Wise, was clearly influenced by Solaris and 2001. Ponderously slow plot, expansive outer space and alien vistas. Also there was a nigh fetishistic focus on the Enterprise, which was clearly just fan service. All in all it wasn't terrible, but it wasn't great.

As we speak I'm watching Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan. A great movie I haven't seen in years. More on that later.

I'm reading Neil Stephenson's Anathem, which is anything but a quick read. I've been getting caught up in some long tomes of late. I'm about halfway through and it's getting easier to parse, but it took some serious plowing initially to get all the terms down. You gotta want it.

I'm picking up the new UFC game this week and looking forward to that. It may even break me out of my Plants vs. Zombies addiction. Ohh and I game I picked up a while back on the cheap, but forgot to mention. I bought the new Techmo Bowl game for the DS. It's... ok. Not great. Plays pretty much the same as the old one, but lacks the actual NFL teams. Seems kinda like it's been lost in time and came back without any new developments and sans it's original draw. All in all, it's pretty forgettable.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Boldy going where tons of nerds have gone before

Saw the Star Trek movie with Trip tonight and I loved it. I've always been somewhat ambivalent about Star Trek, I think it's got some cool stuff going on, but it's also got a lot of strikes against it. The first being the sad ubergeek fanbase. Also it seemed significantly less cool that Star Wars when I was a kid. Of course, the prequels have done everything they can to erode that good will.

So I've decided to take a new look at Star Trek and give it a shot. I've queued up all ten of the previous movies and will be watching them as time allows. I'll keep you posted on how that's going and if my interest wanes. The first should probably come in Wednesday. If this keeps my interest I may look into watching the series... but that's a lot to do and I'm not sure if I got that in me.

As for the new movie, see it. Even if you don't care about Star Trek it's still a pretty good summer action movie. I like the new cast and really was impressed with how they explained the new continuity. I'm usually annoyed with time travel deus ex machina explanations, but this one works for me. The special effects rock. Certain scenes in outer space just take your breathe away. The only downside was the row of dipshits behind me providing idiot commentary. "That's Tyler Perry!!" No shit. He sucks and you suck for liking him... now shut the fuck up and let me watch the movie you fucktard.

Moving on I continue to be totally hooked on Plants vs. Zombies. I actually have it running in the background now as I type this. I'm it's slave. But I think I'm going to try to tear myself away from it and get into Resident Evil 5, which I got from Gamefly. Also need to work on Dead Space.

I also need to finish Of Human Bondage, which just doesn't seem to want to end. It's good, but I'm on page 600 and it's got some real downer moments. Still it is wonderfully written and worth the effort.

Thursday, May 07, 2009

Working with an asset

And so the weekend comes to an end again. Sad. I've had some adventure. Waking up with a blue tongue and blue phlegm. A lovely feeling. Can't thank my neighbors enough. I'm stunned. Trip accused me of blowing Smurfs, but I usually just stick to the Keebler Elves.

Anyway, what's kept me occupied these last coupla days has been Plants vs. Zombies, which is a new Popcap game. I'd recommend it to anyone. There is a free demo and you can actually buy it for $10 through Steam. It's worth $30 at least.

I also powered my way through season 1 of Chuck and over half of Season 2 of Burn Notice. Both are very good. Chuck leans more toward the funny (and nerdy) and I think I may prefer it overall, but Burn Notice is a good watch as well. I mean it's got Bruce Campbell in it, how can it be bad?

I suppose that's it. I thought I had more to say, but I can't for the life of me remember it. Ohh right, now I remember. I was gonna talk about how my memory seems to be going. I was on the phone with Gabe the other day talking about whatever. I started looking around the desk looking for my phone and freaked when I couldn't find it. Of course, it was obviously not on the desk, it was in my hand. I told Gabe and he just laughed at my dumb ass. Who can blame him. Should a 34-year-old be having senior moments like that? Yesh.

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Zombie attack down under

Good clean undead fun

Output suffering

I've noticed that I'm currently on pace to have even fewer blogs this year than I have in years past. I'm not really thrilled by my current tendency to put off blogging for a week and then hammer my poor readers (is it even plural now?) with a leviathan post that amount to cliffnotes of all the entertainment I've been perusing. But, honestly, my life is not set up like it once was and blogging is suffering for it. I used to never be that far from a net enabled computer and could post on a moment's notice. Now my job doesn't really allow for that. It's a problem that's not going to be solved anytime soon, so I guess I'll continue in the limited fashion allowed me and try to supplement with Twitter.

Anyway, I saw the Wolverine movie tonight. I wasn't disappointed, but my expectations were pretty low. It had some cool concepts, but wasn't what I'd call well done. Some plot points just hammered in there to drive home the continuity with the first XMen movie. Definitely not up to the standard set by last year's Hulk and Iron Man movies.

Quantum of Solace was a bit better, in my opinion. I watched that Sunday night. I'd heard lots of people saying it wasn't great, but watchable and I'd say it's a little better than that. The plot is kinda thin, but I'm not typically looking for that kind of depth from a Bond movie. So overall I enjoyed it. I like the "closer to reality" route they've taken with the Daniel Craig reboot.

Reading-wise has been slow going as I'm wading through W. Somerset Maugham's Of Human Bondage. It's long and has some real depth, but I'm loving it. It's nice to pepper in the occasional classic with all the pulp drivel I spend so much time reading.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

If you loathe something, set it free

This weekend went by really quickly, but was fun. I'll start with Heroes. The finale came on Monday, I watched it and I think I'm done with that series for the moment. It's just got too many holes in it and characters that annoy me are the center of the story, while the guys I dig are relegated to the background. I mean, the show grabbed us with Hiro. His unrestrained joy at gaining his powers and finally being exceptional. You gotta love that guy and, of course, he's now a subsidiary character. So enough's enough.

But as one nerdy NBC program passes from my sight another is brought forth. I have started to watch Chuck. I've only watched the first coupla episodes, but so far it's good. A nice balance of nerditude, humor and spy goodness. So I'll definitely be delving into it further.

I also watched Resident Evil: Extinction and I can't say I recommend it for human consumption. It's not appallingly bad, but it did not command my interest. I actually finished reading Next Man Up (which I recommend) while watching it and don't feel like I really missed any salient points. Dropping that book off at the library I browsed and picked up Jerome Bettis' biography, The Bus, which is entertaining so far. I'm about halfway through.

In the videogame world, I finally finished Halo Wars and enjoyed it. It was far and away the best console RTS I've ever played. Good controls and minimal frustration means fun for E. Trip and I also played the UFC 2009 Undisputed demo and it's pretty cool. Some seriously in depth controls. Considerably more difficult that kick, punch, block. Probably gonna have to pick that up.

We also made a go at the new Survival mode in Left4Dead and damn that's hard. It was fun, playing with two random dudes online, but those zombies really are not afraid to swarm. Wish I knew more people that played that game and were able to play at the times I can play. A lot to wish for, really.

I suppose that's all for the moment. I could ramble on about some other miscellaneous bullcrap, but why bother. I've hit the high points for the most part. I will say that I hope the Penguins destroy the cursed Capitals in the second round of the playoffs.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

This post brought to you by Tylenol Cough Syrup

Halfway through the work week and thought I'd drop you all a line. Work blows, nothing new there. I'm still dealing with allergies, although they seem to be receding somewhat, although it could be a ruse.

Spent part of the evening talking to my brother, which was cool. We both talked longer than we intended and I fear it was mostly my fault. I find myself keeping people on the phone way too long when they call me, just because I talk to people so seldom these days. Well, people outside of my normal few I see. Hopefully it's not too annoying for my victims.

I continue reading Last Man Up, which is good. It's very well put together, with stories about individual players creeping in when you least expect it and keeping everything fresh. Still I find it hard to not root against the people featured. (They are Ravens after all.) Still I'd definitely recommend it to anyone who wants to read a book on NFL life.

Speaking of football today is the draft and I'm looking forward to seeing how that turns out. The Lions already signed the "bauble" I talked about in my last post instead of keying on the big men in the middle. I say it worked pretty good for Miami last year, why not follow that example if you're the Lions? But hey, what does Parcells know about building competitive teams? I mean it's not like he had a greatly improved line help make a mediocre QB look sharp... oh wait, that's exactly what happened. And Pennington didn't have any Calvin Johnson to target either.

As for the Steelers, I'm hoping for either a solid offensive lineman or a corner in the first round. But whatever happens, I feel confident the right play will be made for the team. My faith in the Steelers scouts and GM is strong. (One of the few things that'll get me to talk about faith, that and the general stupidity of most people.) Off to bed now.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Hack, cough, wheeze, snarf

Stick with me because I got a lot to cover. I'll start by bemoaning my allergies, which are kicking my ass up, down and all around. I'm constantly coughing and when I'm lying down and take a deep breathe I can hear a wheezing noise from my chest. No fun. But faithful reader, I write on for your pleasure despite my debilitating illness.

I saw Monsters vs. Aliens in 3D last night and enjoyed it quite a bit. Very funny and I really liked the 3D. In years past 3D has been annoying to me because it makes my eyes water the whole time and that irritates me, but the new technology makes it better. So definitely check out MvA if you get a chance.

I also watched Solaris, Andrei Tarkovsky's old version and found it not to my liking. It was nearly three hours long and you felt every minute of it. There was a 10 minute driving sequence. No talking, not action, just a guy driving for 10 minutes. Dullsville. Stay away.

I watched a Troma double feature called Mulva Zombie Ass Kicker!/Filthy McNasty. These movies are so poorly made that you can't help but laugh at them. It's basically a bunch of college kids getting together and doing shit to makethemselves laugh and it amuses me. Don't get me wrong saying it's good would be overstating, but I am amused.

The Grand caught my eye last night. It's a faux documentary about a poker tournament that has a schload of notable stars, both movie and poker related. Funny stuff. I'd say there was a lot of improv and I dug it.

Gamefly sent me Halo Wars, the RTS set in the Halo universe and I'm surprisingly enjoying it quite a bit. It's well put together, I like the interface and so far it hasn't annoyed me like so many RTS games do. Glad I rented it.

Looking forward to the NFL Draft this weekend. Hoping the Steelers can pick up some linemen and a nice cornerback. I started to complain about the 32nd pick, but I'll stop myself since that's the price you pay for a Super Bowl win. Definitely a worthwhile trade. Personally I think the Lions should go OT to start, since their line has always sucked, but seems like they are leaning toward Stafford. Maybe it'll work out, but I believe you build a team in the trenches and add the baubles later.

I think that's enough rambling for the moment. I'm off to grab some Mexican food and maybe watch Religulous.

Friday, April 17, 2009

going nowhere

Haven't posted in over a week because I've had a fairly busy week and been consistently tired. But I'll try to elucidate all of you, my loyal readers, on the highlights. I had a work meeting Wednesday, my day off, and that was great. But I did turn it around somewhat by making plans with Kevin and hanging with him and his fam. Was a good time. His daughters love me, why is it I only have that effect on females under the age of 10?

Well damn, really that's the big thing, everything else is in tune with my regularly scheduled dullness. I've been reading a lot lately, and I finished Dan Rooney's biography. He's the owner of the Steelers. I enjoyed his tale, which is basically 75 years of Pittsburgh history. I found out that my local library has a pretty good selection of nonfiction books on football and I will now be plowing through them. Currently reading Feinstein's Last Man Up, about a year with the Ravens.

I am completely over hearing about these Tea Parties that conservatives have put together. I have no idea what these people want, aside from not having a black president. frankly I think that if you simply culled those people from the herd the average American IQ would leap up several points. On the other side, I wish MSNBC would let the teabagging thing go. It was funny briefly, but now it's just embarrassing.

Aside from useless political jargon I've been watching Burn Notice's first season and am one episode away from finishing it. So far, it's excellent. It balances a nice espionage plotline with family/relationship issues and hot chicks. I'm enjoying it.

And finally I'll close with a nice link to a fine Christian website that will answer many of the questions so many of you have. Enjoy.

Wednesday, April 08, 2009

Orange Peel Beef, boom yummy!

So I managed to spend too much money again today. Trip and I hit up PF Chang's and gorged ourselves on it's bounty. It'd been a while and damn it was good. I also picked up a coupla graphic novels, one Hellboy: Conqueror Worm, which is excellent. The other is call Zombee and I've only read a couple pages, but it seems fairly terrible. I hate to admit it, but recently I've found myself drawn to my old love, comic books. I can't stop with them and I need to step away and not develop a new nerd hobby to spend my money on. It may be too late, tho.

I also picked up the first season of Big Bang Theory and Burn Notice. Both were heavily discounted at Target and I splurged. I'm becoming addicted to shopping at Target. Wish I didn't have to leave town to get to one tho.

After that shopping spree, I got home and decided to give Fable 2 another try. I'd played it last Nov. when it was released and encountered a bug that didn't let me load one area. So I uninstalled it from my XBox and sent it back to Gamefly. I figured maybe it was the install that was corrupted and figured I'd give it another try. So I started, was having a good time and was advancing the main quest fairly well.

I got to this point where the main quest gave me some nebulous instruction to improve my reknown, which annoyed me. So I went to another area to attempt this feat and then it locked up on me. I couldn't even get out of the game back to the dashboard it crashed so hard. This annoyed me and, as such, I have now backed that shit back up and am mailing it back. I shoulda known.

Up next on my rental list, either Resident Evil 5 (which I'm hoping to pass on as I have plenty of horror games at the moment), Halo Wars (wanna try it, but not very optimistic) and Tales of Vesperia (an old school JRPG, a game type I haven't played in a while.)

Monday, April 06, 2009

I'm gon' learn to read!

Gah, the work week seems to keep getting longer. Was totally stunned tonight. but honestly that's like most nights. But at least the weekend is here now. Relaxing time.

I finished Chip Kidd's The Learners this weekend and it's excellent. It's the sequel to The Cheese Monkeys, which I also read recently. Both are excellent and give an insight into the formation of design theory without boring the crap out of you. I'd recommend then to anyone.

I also started reading Issue 13 of McSweeney's Quarterly Concern, which is the comic issue. Some fascinating info and comics in there and it's got an astounding design aesthetic, courtesy of Chris Ware. I got a few issues of this a coupla weeks ago when their website had a sale.

Another thing I purchased in that sale and next up on my reading list is Nick Hornby's Shakespeare Wrote For Money. This is a collection of his columns from The Believer magazine. They are about what books he's reading and buying and it's the third collection of this sort that I've bought. I make an effort to read all the Nick Hornby I can find.

In other literary news, Tor has finally announced some info on the final Wheel of Time novel. It's going to be a trilogy... This annoys me. It's the final novel in a 12 book series that the author, Robert Jordan, died before completing and they are going to make it a posthumous trilogy? Christ, why don't they just ransom off the thing page by page to suck the most money out of nerds wallets. It's absurd. It's evil in the same way the Star Wars prequels were evil. Let's just hope that this trilogy doesn't suck as hard as that one.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Your lounging needs fulfilled

Finally someone has put together a comprehensive point by point look at the Snuggie and it's competitors. Enjoy it.

In other news, the Torpedo sandwich at Quizno's gets a thumbs up from me.

The soul still burns

In years past, after the Super Bowl, I pretty much pretend there is no football until the draft. This season my fervor has not abated. Small wonder really. I mean, I did claim the TLB fantasy title (trophy still MIA) and, of course, Pittsburgh ran the table for their sixth Super Bowl victory. (I gotta tell you I really love writing that past sentence, I could write it every day.) So I've continued to visit the various football sites in the offseason and kept up with a lot more than I usually do this time of year.

Currently I'm watching the 2006 NFL Wildcard game where the Steelers come from behind to beat the Bengals and started their run to Super Bowl XL. Love it! I could watch Jerome Bettis run all day long. Up next on my agenda is the Colts game that nearly caused me to tear down my living room piece by piece.

This weekend I also read Bump and Run by Mike Lupica, which I liked a lot actually. This was my first taste of Lupica's fiction and I might be back for more. I definitely recommend it to Nick, and Adam if he actually read anything besides the NFL Prospectus.

Other things about this past week:
  • Slurpees are yummy! (I actually knew this, but had it reinforced on my drive home.)
  • Anyone who speeds within 100 miles of Martinsville on race weekend is too dumb to live. I saw no less than five cars pulled over today.
  • Shopping for headphones is annoying. All the ones that are rated well are expensive as shit. I saw one pair rated five stars on sale for $995. No thanks.
  • David Byrne and Brian Eno's new album "Everything That Happens Will Happen Today" is pretty good.
  • I haven't decided if I like the new Morrissey album or not. I may, but need more time with it.
  • The Penguins are making a surge into the playoffs and I'm excited. They could be a dark horse if the defense can stop teams catching up in the third period.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Fight and make vampires bleed

Gads what a horrible work week. So damn long and it's only four days. But it's every waking minute for four days. Friday night a depression descended on me and I've only just gotten over it. It was not aided by the fact that my meth-making neighbors were cooking this weekend and on top of that they had some lovely loud-ass music playing to wake me early on Sunday. Nothing like having Ludacris thunder his way into your consciousness to start the day.

Anyway, I'm coming out of it since I got a few hours to relax. Watched the movie Venus, which got Peter O'Toole an Oscar nomination. He was phenomenal as the old guy who falls in love with a crass young girl. Some serious depth that went further than just a creepy old man molesting the youth.

I also watched the Battlestar Galactica finale and was pleased with it, all told. This past season has been kind of sketchy for me, but the finish made it worthwhile I suppose. It ended with pretty much everything settled, but there is still room for more if someone can find a good way (or good reason) to do it. I know it's nerdy, but the first four seasons are really phenomenal and I recommend them to everyone. I know it's a Sci-Fi show and that scares off lots of non-nerds, but it's good by any standard, not just good for the Sci-Fi Channel. (Soon to be SyFy for some godawful reason.)

I also read Phillip Roth's Indignation, which was a good read. That said, I'm pretty sure I did not pick up on the subtext that I suspect was there. I need to look online for some reviews, but who knows if I'll take the time.

As I posted on Twitter (which you can see my feed to the left there and we all know Twitter is the new hotness, just ask any 24 hour news channel) I have finished the first level of Dead Space. It's excellent so far, but it's hard to sit down and play. It's got this creepy atmosphere with horrors jumping out at you at odd times and eerie music playing. It's unsettling and I have a hard time putting myself into that environment for extended periods of time. It's something that's happened several other times (most notably with Condemned) and it's problematic. I should probably try to start playing these games during daylight hours, but that's exceedingly difficult for me. Ahh well.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

You can't take the sky from me

Been a decent weekend all told. St. Patty's Day I spent too much on dinner, then Trip and I had several drinks and I pounded him at various fighting games. Some fun. And today I sat around and did very little. Which was nice. Very laid back, which I needed after such a trying week at work.

I started watching Torchwood, which is the Doctor Who spinoff. Hasn't captured me yet, but I do enjoy it's more mature tone. I also watched Step Brothers, which was quite fun. I gotta say, from watching the trailers I thought I knew exactly what that movie was, but it took an odd turn. Which is to say, it surprised me and I was quite entertained.

I also watched Pineapple Express and damn, that movie is funny. At one point they just dropped all pretense of reality and went funny. Sure it's a weed humor, but it's damn funny weed humor.

I also downloaded a couple of albums that some of you should look into. The first is War Child - Heroes, which is an album full of tracks by classic artists who have requested a certain new artist to record that song. Highlights include Beck covering Bob Dylan's Leopard Skin Pill Box Hat and Lilly Allen sings The Clash's Straight To Hell in a refreshing way. Oh and TV On the Radio doing Bowie's Heroes is also excellent. The album itself is a little uneven, but worth a buy because proceeds go to helping children in war torn areas.

Second on the album tip is Dark Was The Night, a compilation album of indie artists that benefits AIDS research and awareness. Actually the correct term would be double album actually as it's 31 tracks. I'd highly recommend Brackett, WI by Bon Iver. I'd kind of glanced over Bon Iver unimpressed until I heard this. Now I've got the recent album For Emma, Forever Ago and it's very good too. Also the track by Riceboy Sleeps is magic. It's one of the guys from Sigur Ros and it's beautiful. Several other tracks are excellent and I'd say this is the better of the two albums, but it's twice is long.

You can download either at iTunes or Amazon or both for under $20.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

It could happen here

This picture is a sad, sad statement on humanity. The sad thing is that I'm actually surprised I didn't see this live in person in Martinsville

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Roanoke Times fail

I have to say the failblog has brought me many laughs, but scrolling through old entries brought me this gem. It really says so much about our area.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

I will watch the Watchmen, apparently

Finally got out to see the Watchmen movie, which was pretty damn good. I've been a fan of the comic for a long time and the movie held up fairly well. My one beef was with some of the soundtrack choices. They seemed a little hamfisted at times, Simon and Garfunkel's Sound of Silence being the worst offender. Still, definitely worth checking out.

I would, however, recommend leaving your 7-8-year-old at home, because this movie is not for him. But one family in Martinsville did not heed that R rating and I got to watch this with some idiot kid talking through half of it. I thought the intensely violent sequences might have lead them to leave or perhaps the sex scenes, full frontal nudity or even the rape scene may have given these parents pause, but no, they watched all the way through kids in tow. Sad really.

Last night I watched Waltz with Bashir, which was nominated for Best Foreign Language film. It's animated and about an Israeli/Palestinian war, I'm not sure which one. It interviews different people about this war and their experiences and ends talking about this massacre that happened to the Palestinians at the hands of this Christian Phalangist group. This ending is really intense and worth watching. It's heartbreaking.

On a lighter note, if you ever want boobs on your leg, look up this person.