Friday, May 30, 2008

Indy recap & other thoughts

So I know I promised that I'd try to take some pictures at Indy to give you guys an idea of what goes on there, but I didn't take a single photo the entire weekend. Not that it mattered, there wasn't much that would have stood out anyways, we were all too intoxicated to really walk around, and despite the large crowd on Sunday, it was somewhat quiet on the streets the night before. There were a few highlights though. My brother's friend tagged along for the trip, and in a drunken state, tried to hit on a fine-looking girl Saturday night, which led to this exchange:

Ben: "Hey, how's it going?"

Girl: "No!"

You know your prospects aren't good when a girl doesn't even let you make a pitch before shooting you down. How do you come back on that? "Wait, you haven't even heard my line yet, it's a good one!" Ben responded by just walking away dumbfounded, which made it even more classic.

As I predicted, Danica didn't win. And I don't think she ever will there, despite being on one of the best teams in the sport. What made it even funnier is that ALL THREE women in the race wrecked. But I wasn't surprised, that happens pretty much every year.

Some other thoughts:

-Sam Keller in the Arena League? Did these guys watch any of our games last year? The last thing you want in that game is a QB who stands in the pocket for 15 seconds, waiting for someone to get open when he should have thrown it after three steps....I just remember him getting hit as he threw nearly every time last year, and unfortunately for him, in the AFL, there's not going to be a tailback to check down to after every other option is closed off. He's going to get hit. A lot. What makes it almost comical is that on the article (like every other article ever written about him in the post-ASU era) is that it brings up his big game against LSU and his Sun Bowl MVP game against Purdue. At what point do people realize that those games were aberrations, not something you should count on? Don't get me wrong, I'm thankful for his effort at NU, and I wish him nothing but the best of luck, but let's face it, he's not a great QB, particularly for a league that is predicated on getting rid of the ball in less than 2 seconds.

-Typical Minnesota: We get one perfectly sunny day (yesterday, on Sunday), followed by a week with rain forecast for every f***ing day. I know it gets old, me bitching about it, but seriously, I'll ask again: Why does anyone live here?

-Lakers vs. Celtics is going to be the first Finals that I will watch in it's entirety since.....well, probably the mid-90's.....I say Lakers in 6, though I'm hoping that I'm wrong, since I'm hoping for KG to get a ring. I will admit though, it is fascinating to watch Kobe Bryant now. He's playing near a level that Jordan was back in the early-to-mid 90's. I know that's borderline sacrilegious to say, given Jordan's stature in the game, but Kobe does what he wants, when he wants, just like MJ used to do. He can bring his team back from 20 point deficits by himself, or do it by dropping 10 or 12 assists if he needs to. He makes his teammates better, but at the same time knows instinctively when he needs to just put them on his back and carry them. He's a lot of fun to watch, and on the plus side, he somehow seems more likable now that he dropped that perfect McDonald's posterboy image that he used to have. I don't know how that makes sense, but it seems the more real and asshole-ish he is, the easier it is to admire his skill as a player. He used to be kind of fake in his early days, and now he's just being himself it seems. And he, and the Lakers, are better off because of it.

Let me make it clear: I'm not saying Kobe is as good as MJ. I'm saying that there are spurts where he plays like him.

-Fall camp can't get here soon enough. I need college football back, and soon.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Memorial Day Weekend Potpurri

Memorial day weekend is a special time of year for me. In addition to an important and overlooked holiday (more on that at the end), this weekend also is when all the men in my family pile into an RV and head for Indianapolis, where we take in the Indy 500 and all the drunken festivities that come with it. I'll be honest, the race is pretty damn boring. I mean, for all the hoopla, it's cars driving in circles. But you don't go for just the race, you go for the spectacle of it all, the pomp and circumstance, the EVENT. It's not a race, it's a three-day tailgate with 300,000 other people.

The highlight is Saturday night, when everyone has officially gotten into town and you take to the streets with your coolers of beer and let the night take you where it may. You see your fair share of not-in-their-prime boobs, and drink way more than your fair share of Coors Light, but maybe that's what makes the aforementioned breast-eses even passable. Either way, it makes for a great weekend trip, and it's one that I have failed to adequately capture on film during my previous 16 trips. That is something I plan on remedying this year, and I'll try my best to properly document the fun and post it on webshots so those of you who read the blog can look at them and get an idea of what I am talking about.

Some thoughts on various topics before I get out of here:

-Danica Patrick is not going to win the Indy 500. I even made a sign saying she can't, which I will bring to the race with me. Yea, she won the race in Japan, but that was mainly due to the fact that the three or four guys in front of her had to pit on the last 5 laps. I still don't think she can win a race of this magnitude, despite the media's infatuation with her. I'm not sexist, I just think it's unfair that the better drivers on the circuit don't get the respect they deserve. Of course, if she does win, I'll be showered in beer and food as I try to run out of the track with my anti-Danica for my sake, she HAS to lose.

- So when I was running the other day at the health club, NFL Live came on. At first, I was psyched......"Oh, good, there's going to be some football stuff on, that'll make this run tolerable at least"........but for the next half hour, all I got was analysis of Jason Taylor and Bill Parcells' relationship (which was supplemented by heavy doses of "highlights" of Taylor's run on Dancing with the Stars), followed by more Spygate news......which brings me to my next question: At what point do we just come to the conclusion that maybe we don't need an NFL show in May? If this is all they have to talk about, isn't it time to call it off until fall camp? I watch NFL Live to hear about actual news, not see some giant doing the tango while his relationship with the front office is discussed. Totally pointless, and unfortunately, NFL coverage is only going to become more and more saturated with crap like this. People have an insatiable appetite for any football news, but can't we agree that this doesn't qualify?

-I wish someone at the 'ol Alma Mater had sat me down and really explained to me just how utterly useless a history degree is. I mean, I knew it wasn't the most attractive BA, but I had no idea that it literally had no applicable use in the work force....unless of course, you want to sell be completely honest, I'd like to wipe my ass with it and mail it back to them. So I am presently looking at either grad school or an officer program with the Marines....if anybody has any suggestions, feel free to let me know.

- You know what is one of my favorite parts of the spring and summer in the Midwest? The annual tradition of the DOT blocking off entire roads...........and then not doing anything to them. It's especially fun when they funnel it down to one lane, and then you look at all those closed-down lanes with absolutely no construction being done. Right now, in my own neighborhood, they've completely gutted nearly ever road, only to leave them that way. I don't mind driving on gravel, but it's especially frustrating when I have to follow all these city folk who drive about 5 miles an hour because they don't want the rocks to scratch their 1992 Dodge Stratus.

- Listening to the radio all day, I am often subjected to some really crap-tastic fare that today's youth considers music. Lately it has become somewhat of a passion of mine to try and spread music such as Creedence, Zepplin, and Skynyrd to my friends and those younger than me. Sure enough, most everyone that hears it and gives them a chance is converted, and one by one, we'll show the younger generation what real music is. Because you know what it isn't? Talentless, studio-manufactured skidmarks like T-Pain (if you're over 30, just look him up on YouTube. You'll see why you should be concerned about what your kids call music). And I'm not capping on the entire rap or hip-hop genre. Some artists still put out real quality stuff (Kanye, T.I.), but now there are so many dime-a-dozen pieces of s*it like Soulja Boy that it sickens me. If you try to explain to an 18 year-old how good someone like Dr. Dre or Tupac was, they just stare at you blankly. I don't understand how you can claim to be a fan of something and not understand it's beginnings and best artists. It'd be like saying you're a basketball fan without having watched Jordan.

The last thing I wanted to say before I sign off for the weekend: Thank a veteran. They deserve both our respect and thanks for the sacrifices they made to make this country great. I'm not going to make some long impassioned plea. Just do the right thing, and say thanks.

Friday, May 16, 2008


Well, now that we've settled into the dead period between spring ball and fall camp (also known as "pray there are no arrests or freak TV moving injuries" time), it's gotten pretty quiet around the Husker blogosphere. For those of you desperate for continued Husker coverage, I suggest clicking on the other blog links to the right, as you'll find that unlike me, many other Husker blogs continue to crank out quality stuff. DXP continues to impress with it's statistical analysis, as well as their new project of naming the best Huskers in history for every uniform number. I would have love to have done that, but unfortunately, my memory only goes back about 14 years, so with the exception of the role players of the early-to-mid 90's and the obvious stars, I don't think my list would have been nearly as good as theirs.

A few things I wanted to weigh in on:

-The whole Eight Belles Kentucky Derby saga. Look, I don't deny that it's unfortunate. It's too bad to lose such a beautiful animal, and I have no doubt that the trainer cared about it much like I do my dog. But as for the whole outcry from PETA and others? Hey, it's a f**king horse, OK? Can we please try to remind ourselves of that? There are 100,000 people likely dead in Myanmar, there are probably 50,000 more in China because of the recent earthquake, and these people are bitching because a horse broke it's ankles and had to get sent to the glue factory? There are bigger issues going on in the world right now, how 'bout we focus on that? The same sh*t happened with Barbaro a couple of years ago, and we had to sit there and watch while Sportscenter devoted hours of coverage to the doomed horse's attempted recovery, before it finally succumbed and had to be put down, all while there were more relevant and real sports that could have been talked about. Surely I can't be the only one who thinks that PETA needs to stop bitching and moaning about it, right?

- Spygate is over, OK? They cheated, they got caught, fined, and embarrassed. Despite the scrutiny, they nearly had a perfect season, which would have been great, because then we never would have to hear about the '72 Dolphins every time someone started the season 5-0 again. Either way, to hear Specter call for an independent investigation is ridiculous. The guy needs to find some real problems he could work towards solving. As Ted Kennedy (someone I loathe usually) said to the Boston Globe :

"With the war in Iraq raging on, gasoline prices closing in on $4 a gallon, and Americans losing their homes at record rates to foreclosure, the United States Senate should be focusing on the real problems that Americans are struggling with."

Damn straight. I'm so sick of hearing about this, it even surpasses the Eight Belles thing. I'm tired of watching NFL Live devote an entire half-hour every day to Matt Walsh (who is really just an attention whore, if you ask me) and Spygate when they could be talking about position battles and personnel decisions throughout the league. You know, football stuff. Let's just let this thing die so we can stop talking about it for the first time in 9 months.

-If you like the Spurs, you apparently support soccer on hardwood. Every time I see these d-bags flop whenever someone breathes on them, it sickens me to think that these guys are so respected by the public as a team who "plays the right way". Really? Tim Duncan whines more than my 6 year-old cousin, and if I have to see that bug-eye look with his arms up in frustration every time he thinks he's fouled (which apparently every time someone someone comes within 5 feet), I'm going to vomit. I really, REALLY hate the Spurs. If I played for the Hornets, I'd lower my shoulder and give them a real reason to fall down. If they are going to fake it every time, why not make it real and earn my foul?
-----One more note about this series: If you haven't watched Chris Paul this postseason, you are missing out. Best point guard I've ever watched. I'm serious when I say that I think I could average 10 points a game in the NBA if I played with him. He's that damn good.

-Can NOBODY in the state of Minnesota drive? I can't adequately describe how irritating it is when people tailgate and then blow by me when I'm already going 10 miles over the speed limit. What makes it even more hilarious is when they slingshot around me, cutting me off to gain ONE F**KING CAR SPACE on me. Really, what did that save you on your commute, 4 seconds? At what point do these assholes realize that even if you drive like a complete douchebag, you're probably only going to get to work approximately 2 minutes before I do?

-Not surprised at all by the O.J. Mayo situation. Hell, if there was a way I could have wagered on him taking money before the college basketball season started, I would have.

Back nest week with some more Potpourri, as well as preview of the Indy 500, which I go to every year.