Saturday, August 30, 2008

8/30/08 ShutYer/PieHole '08

I wish I had a sign or a button or some universal symbol that says, "No, I do not want to talk politics with you". That season is heating up again. It's evident everywhere you are. It's even plastered on many of my friends' Facebook statuses.

While I don't deviate from my initial New Year's Resolution of not talking politics and the reasons why... I want to elaborate on the reasons. It's as if I've already formed some sort of opinion of you. (Not that you probably care what I think, but you can extrapolate my opinion and figure other people think the same of you). By talking politics, you're only going to lower that opinion I have of you, regardless of what you say. The more you talk, the worse it gets for you. Somehow, when people talk politics, the limits to their mind become clear.

The only example I can give to help explain where I'm coming from is when people talk poker. When you listen to someone tell you about their inevitable bad beat story (or on rare occasion a great play that they made), you can tell the limits of their poker skills by how they tell the story. The more you delve into their story, the more it becomes clear that they just have absolutely no clue.

Example Poker Story One: "I can't believe I got my aces cracked by four deuce offsuit! I mean, seriously, who plays four deuce offsuit?!" (This would be 90% of poker stories I hear. It's clear there's no context and no higher level thinking involved. It's simply - I have aces, I should win.)

Example Poker Story Two: "I raised with Ace King and some guy calls me with Ace Jack. Of course he rivers a jack and busts me. It's always on the river!" (Again, there's no context here. Even when I ask questions about the details, very few are remembered. Good poker players remember the details).

Example Poker Story Three: (Let's pretend this is the guy who played four deuce offsuit from the first story). "The tournament started with 27 players. We bought in for $20 each, started with 4000 in chips and there were no rebuys. We were down to the final seven players with the top five positions paying. With over 100,000 chips in play, the average stack was just over 15,000. I was 2nd in chips with around 22,000 and with players not wanting to bust before the bubble, I was ready to take advantage. A real tight player limped from early position with the blinds at 200/400. Both the cutoff and button smooth called. I'm in the small blind and decide to call with 4 2 given the pot odds and nobody showing any real strength except for maybe the initial limper. The big blind checks, leaving us with 2000 in the pot already. Just as I had hoped, the flop rolled off beautifully for me - J22 rainbow. I debate leading out a weak bet, but opt for the check raise, hoping somebody hit that jack or has a pair that he thinks is good. I check, as does the big blind. The initial limper bets the pot and leaves himself only 5000 behind. The cutoff folds. The button strangely smooth calls and still has 9000 behind. Does he really have a 2? Nah, he wouldn't be playing any hands with a 2. He must either have a jack (like QJ) or a middle pair that he thinks is good. With the pot getting juicy, I decide to make my move. I check raise all in. The bb mucks. The initial limper is stunned yet excited at the same time. He quietly gives me music to my ears and says, "I call." The button is forced to fold. I flip over my trip 2s and the limper can't believe that he's invested 7400 chips with aces only to have them crushed. If only he had raised preflop, I wouldn't have had such great odds to play my hand in the first place." (Honestly, unless you won some major tournament by playing this hand, I generally don't care either. But at least it's clear that you know your stuff.)

Despite my poker tangent, the point here is I don't want to hear your politics. When you write a sentence or two on your Facebook status, you sound like Poker stories 1 and 2. When you comment back on someone's status, you sound like an even bigger idiot. It's a crude, insensitive way to put things, but it's the only way I've ever gotten my point across... Arguing politics is like participating in the Special Olympics. Even if, by the slightest chance you happen to win, in the end, you're still retarded.

I'm trying really hard to help you here... Quit sounding retarded when you're not.

I had intended to just get a few things off my mind. Then that happened. I kind of got carried away. But, for what it's worth, it made me feel better.


In a sign that I don't think I'll ever grow up - All I can think about is Rock Band 2. I don't own Rock Band. But I've played it and love it. Now, with the equivalent Guitar Hero World Tour coming out, people will have to decide which one to purchase. Some people will choose one over the other based on brand loyalty or the songs or gameplay or cost or whatever. You know what the honest to goodness deciding factor is for me? (Assuming I eventually have the money for it). The one with the best bass pedal on the drums. That's it. After breaking so many bass pedals on the Rock Band that wasn't mine and not being able to replace them without replacing the entire game under warranty, I decided that the bass pedal is by far the limiting factor of that game.

Rock Band 2?

Or Guitar Hero World Tour?

After watching those videos, the answer is clear. It's Rock Band 2. Any game that advertises using Lenny Kravitz loses in my book.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

8/27/08 I've Got Something in My Front Pocket for You

When I write, I write about random stuff. But today's extra random - Just because I need to get things off my mind...

I'm still bothered by commercials during the shows I watch. Because, based on sound capitalistic desire for profit, the commercial makers want to gear their commercials towards some sort of target audience. Now, if I'm watching a certain TV show, I imagine that I'm part of that target audience. For example, it would be kind of stupid to advertise Depends or Poly Grip during the kids' show "Dora the Explorer", right?

I'm watching the latest "World Series of Poker" last night on ESPN, when a commercial for some product that waters your plants evenly over time is on. It's some long, bulbous Chemistry lab looking device that you shove in the dirt and it releases water at some proper intervals or something. Honestly, I've never owned a plant before. Most likely because, even with that product, it would probably still die. How is the poker playing community the target audience for a product like this? Do they really think that we're sitting at a 2:30 am session at the casino thinking to ourselves... Ok, I'll play one last orbit and then I've got to get home and water my plant. Never mind the fact that I'm up a month's rent and the guy to my right is loosely bleeding chips, ready to double me up again. My ferns are thirsty.

Here it is. They're called Aqua Globes....

On Comedy Central within the last hour there was some commercial for Enzyte. Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't it August? You think I'd be bothered by the creepy guy on whose lap everybody wants to sit. But I'm more bothered by the idea that a Christmas themed commercial seemed anywhere near appropriate in August.


Now that the Olympics are over, there's virtually nothing on my DVR. Which is fine, in and of itself. But I'm missing all of those stories about Michael Phelps and his breakfasts and ADHD. So, let's relive that magical moment where he wins by .01 seconds...

Friday, August 22, 2008

8/22/08 Dome Hockey

My biggest disappointment in the Olympics, by far, is the US vs Russia men's volleyball match. The US is in red and Russia is blue?! Is nothing sacred anymore? It's as if the IOC just said, you know every game of US vs. USSR dome hockey you've ever played? Erase those memories. Remember Rocky IV and Rambo 3? The communists weren't really red. Your memories are no longer valid. Honestly, I'm very upset about this. It's as if every hope, dream, aspiration and belief I've held since I was a child has been, at the minimum, put into question.... And, mostly, just crushed.


Rock Paper Scissors: A Geek Tragedy is coming out in theaters. Or maybe on DVD. Or maybe straight to YouTube. But it's coming out.

Here are some other Rock Paper Scissors movies for your viewing pleasure.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

8/16/08 Ardilla

I think the Kayak event is discriminatory. The gates are red and green. Those are the two colors that people who are color blind cannot distinguish.

It's also unfair to people who flip over and miss gates that way.


I'm finding myself watching more shot put than anything else track and field. Some of these guys are throwing the shot put upwards of 70 feet. That ball is 16 pounds, right? The weight of a full on bowling ball? How far do you think you could throw a shot put? I think, going granny style, I could maybe crack 12 feet.


It's not often I get a chance to brag about anything. It's not because I'm humble. It's because I rarely do anything significant. Today though, I'm going to brag.

My softball team once again won the league. Our once sad, sad co-ed team somehow is repeat champions. Before the game, I checked our roster and saw I was batting last. I looked at the coach and asked, "You're serious?" He said, "Yeah, I'm serious." I then flipped the page with our season stats and said, "Ok. That makes sense. It must be that I'm only hitting .950 this season." I looked at the details and saw that, in 20 at bats, I had 8 doubles, a triple, a homerun and 13 runs scored.

I was extra inspired to keep that batting average in tact and went 3 for 3, ending the season batting .957. (It's funny - you have no idea how mad I am that I made that one out a few weeks ago). Not only did we win the game 18-3, but my pitching record for the season remained a perfect 6-0. Despite what they say about how you play the game - it's way more fun to win.

That's it. I'm done talking about me.


My dad sends the Squirrel Obstacle Course for our viewing pleasure....

Thursday, August 14, 2008

8/14/08 Olympic Riddle

Five swimmers (Adam, Brad, Carl, Doug, and Eric) have been preparing for the Olympics. It is now time for the swimming time trials. The five swimmers each compete in the four different strokes (backstroke, breaststroke, butterfly, and freestyle). The top three finishers in each event will qualify for the Olympic swim team in that stroke. Using the following clues, determine the order of finish in each of the four strokes. (If you need the answer, I can post it later).

1) Only one contestant qualified in all four strokes.

2) No contestant finished last in more than one event.

3) Adam finished better in the backstroke than he did in the butterfly.

4) Brad finished better than Doug in the butterfly.

5) Adam finished just behind Brad and just ahead of Eric in the breaststroke.

6) Doug finished just ahead of Carl in the freestyle.

7) Neither Brad nor Eric finished third in any event.

8) Eric's finish in the backstroke was the same as Doug's in the butterfly.

9) Doug only finished in the same position in the backstroke and the freestyle.

10) Carl finished in a different position in each event.

11) Brad finished only two events in the same position.

12) The contestant who finished second in the butterfly beat Doug in the freestyle.

13) The contestant who finished first in the freestyle did not qualify in the backstroke.

14) The contestant who finished fifth in the backstroke did not finish third in the butterfly.

15) No contestant finished in the same position in both the breaststroke and the butterfly.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

8/12/08 Asparagus

To Ira and Barry, here's another brain teaser for you....

Divide $318 (in whole $ increments) into a number of bags so that I can ask for any amount between $1 and $318, and you can give me the proper amount by giving me a certain number of these bags without opening them. What is the minimum number of bags you will require?

Monday, August 11, 2008

8/11/08 Citius, Altius, Fortius

Oh DVR, why must you do what I ask? Last Friday I found the Summer Olympics on TV and decided to "record all". I now have 30-some hours of recorded Olympic coverage. Regardless of what I'm doing or where I am, the Olympics are pretty much running constantly at my place. I'm up to last night's coverage... the synchronized diving part. As much as I can appreciate the amazing dedication and talent this sport takes, how can this remain in the Olympics when both baseball and softball got kicked out?

Mike sends the gripping story of the guy behind the opening ceremonies. Zhang Yimou has spent most of his life making movies that have been censored in China. Talk about getting the opportunity to finally shine, huh?


How is it obvious that my closest friends know me well? Both Mike and Joe sent the latest CERN press release... The Large Hadron Collider will be up and running on September 10th. I can't friggin' wait.

Confused about the LHC? Mike sends a rap that might help explain what's going on...

How much information are the LHC detectors collecting? 10,000 Encyclopedia Britannica's per second.


My family was here visiting recently. We took some video of our time together. Here's the highlights....


And finally, for those who are still reading (today and at all).... A brain teaser....

Grandpa: "My grandson is about as many days as my son is weeks, and my grandson is as many months as I am in years. My grandson, my son and I together are 120 years. Can you tell me my age in years?"

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

8/6/08 Where the Hell Was I?

When you're using the channel guide on the TV screen, you have to press down to get to the higher numbered channels. But once you select a channel, you have to press up to get to the higher numbered channels. TV can be confusing.


Does anyone else suspect something goofy is going to happen at this year's Olympics?


For the Lost fans out there, you can join the Dharma Initiative. I have no idea what this is all about (we've already established that I get confused easily), but it is part of Lost and looks like it'll be updated periodically throughout the next season. (Thanks to my brother for this link).


Cousin Danny sends a photo and interview with the hottest girl ever. (Hint: See question #3).


The Chicago Bears have unveiled their new offense for 2008.


This is for my brother who has no idea what I was talking about when I referred to a singing piece of fruit from Sesame Street...