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In a year when the Cowboys were predicted to be the first team ever to have home field advantage in the Super Bowl, it ends up being the Mavericks bringing championship gold to Dallas.  I couldn’t be happier for veterans Dirka Dirka and Jason Kidd, as well as owner Mark Cuban, all of whom just won their first NBA championship in what can be called an unlikely playoff run.

But that’s not the real story.  The history books won’t recall this event as the Dallas Mavericks winning their first championship, but rather it’ll be known for LeBron not making good on his promise to bring multiple titles to Miami.  It was nearly a year ago when King James dropped the Decision on all our collective asses, and I’m sure I wasn’t the only one to prematurely crown them.  Even Hitler thought the Heat were a shoo-in to beat Dallas.  And not to take anything away from the Mavs, but they had nothing on the Lakers team of the last couple of years.  If the Heat had been playing Kobe and Co. from last year, it would’ve been done in 4, no doubt!

Perhaps this will put to rest the James vs Jordan debate (that’s weird, my sister’s name is Jordan), at least for the time being.  Most will agree that even the greats couldn’t get it done alone: Earvin had Kareem, Kobe had Shaq and Gasol, Jordan had Pippen.  One can’t hold it against LeBron then for his decision to team up with Dwayne Wade and Chris Bosh, because for whatever reason, he wasn’t getting the help in Cleveland.  However, if he truly is the best player ever to walk the court, he has no more excuses (although he’ll prolly blame it on the coach).

In the end, LeBron might put up similar, possibly even better, numbers than Jordan did, but I’ll be damned if the guy wins more than six championships.  Heck, I would be surprised if the guy could muster up any more than two in his whole dang career.  In fact, I think LeBron could go down as having the worst finals record of any player.  Just look at how the East is starting to shape up: Boston is getting old as fuck, Dwight Howard looks to be heading out of Orlando (possibly to LA?), the Knicks are still a superstar away from having any type of impact in the post season, and something tells me Mikhail Prokhorov won’t be making good on his goal.  We could be seeing Heat vs Bulls in many a conference championship to come.  Wouldn’t it be fitting if for the rest of his career, LeBron could breeze through the playoffs, only to lose it in the Finals?  Well, that’s my dream anyway.

Boy am I sure glad I grew up when I did.  SNES, TMNT, Calvin & Hobbes, the list goes on.  But I am perhaps most grateful that I grew up before some asshole created Crocs shoes.  For those who don’t know, Crocs are those foam shoes that became very popular a few years ago.  They’re half clog, half sandal, all bullshit, and they come in many different colors and designs, but you know what they say: you can spray paint shit gold, it’ll still smell like shit though.  Apparently they are extremely comfortable, but I’ll never know because I won’t wear the mother fuckers.  I’d rather suffer slightly than wear a pair of shoes that make me look a big dickhead.

Crocs have become the go-to shoe for young children, so like I said, I’m glad I grew up before they were created.  For the most part, little kids have no input on their wardrobe, so I guess I’ll give them a pass for wearing dumb shoes.  Mario Batali is a whole different story though.

Batali waddles around NYC (or wherever the heck he lives) rocking a pair of orange Crocs.  According to his Wikipedia page, it’s part of his “signature look.”  Orange Crocs?  My God mang what is wrong with you!?  I don’t give a damn if you do have a Michelin Star to your name, that’s just not right!  You’re 50 years old for Christ’s sake!  I find it hard to believe that he cooks with those shoes on, as they would not be ideal in a kitchen setting.  If my chef came to work wearing a pair of Crocs, you better believe I’d dump a shitload of fryer oil on him, run and tell that homeboy.  If Cam Netwon Reggie Bush had to give back his Heisman Trophy for receiving improper benefits, Batali should have to give back his James Beard awards for wearing those stupid shoes, end of story.

As you can tell, I don’t much care for Crocs, and thankfully I am not alone.  I Hate Crocs Dot Com is a website dedicated to the eradication of the worst shoes ever created, but it appears they have given up the fight (the site hardly gets updated these days).  So my faithful readers, I propose we do the job ourselves!  Let’s all make a pact: if you see someone wearing Crocs, whether man, woman, or child, you’ll “beat her ass,” to quote the Mayor.  Hopefully together we can rid the world of Crocs once and for all!

My name is Billy, and I am a poet.  I’m not the only poet who goes by the name Billy though, not by a long shot.  There are literally dozens out there in the world, and we here at the blog would like to recognize and honor a few from time to time in a feature we’re going to call “Other Poets Named Billy.”  Tonight’s episode features none other than Billy Corgan.

Billy Corgan (left) and a grieving Courtney Love (right), moments after Kurt Cobain (not pictured) was found dead

Most of you prolly know Billy Corgan as the guy behind The Smashing Pumpkins, but did you also know that he could write poetry??  Hard to believe, but it’s true.  In 2004, he released a poetry collection entitled “Blinking With Fists,” chalk full of 57 poems.  That’s over 56 poems!  If you were to read a poem a day, it would take you over a month to finish his book.  If you decided to take weekends off, you wouldn’t finish reading BWF for almost two full months!  If you didn’t take weekends off, but one of the months you were reading during was February (regardless if it was a leap year or not), it would take you over two months to finish Billy Corgan’s poetry book.  Crazy.

Upon its release, the highly prestigious poetry publication Entertainment Weekly rated Blinking With Fists a respectable D grade, claiming the poems to be both “pretentious and confoundingly esoteric.”  I haven’t read too many of Mr. Corgan’s poems, but I find it hard to believe that the guy who is currently releasing a 44 song album, one song at a time, could be pretentious.  What is this glorious album titled?  Teargarden By Kaleidyscope.  Nope, nothing pretentious about that.

Not only does Billy Corgan have a knack for penning some great poems, he can deliver them just as well.  Check out this slam poetry performance he did a couple years ago:

I’ll bet you didn’t even realize that he was reciting lines from the Smashing Pumpkins’ hit single “Bullets With Butterfly Wings,” did you?

Every so often, I log onto my Facebook account and see a little notice towards the bottom left of the page: someone has “poked” me.  My two options at this point are to either poke that individual back, or I can just click on the little “x” and the notice will go away.  The problem with both of these options is that the person who originally sent the poke can send yet another poke, starting this whole poking adventure back up again.  It’s a vicious cycle and one that I am frankly getting a little tired of.  There is of course a third option: just ignore the poke.  By doing so, the person who poked you can’t ever poke you back, but there will be a constant reminder that you were once poked.

Back in the infancy of Facebook, poking was all the rage.  No one really knew what it was, so they applied their own meaning to it.  You could poke someone you had a crush on, or perhaps a recently friended acquaintance, or even someone you didn’t even know.  Heck, I would poke up to five different people on any given day, that’s how reckless I was back then!  But now that Facebook has come to consume all of our lives, the dumb little gimmicks they used to need in order to stay ahead of Myspace are unnecessary.  Poking is no longer cute; I’d say it’s downright obnoxious, dangerous even!

So here we are, back in the present day, and I’m wondering who I’ve got to write a letter to demanding that the Poke button be destroyed.  Mark Zuckerberg?  The other guy?  Jesse Eisenberg?  All three?  As someone who has contemplated buying stock in FB, I demand my voice be heard!  Why not get rid of the poke button and replace it with the highly requested Dislike button?  Believe you me, no one is going to be mourning the loss of the useless poke button.

Ok you guys, I just went to check out Zuckerberg’s FB page.  You see, I was thinking that perhaps the easiest and quickest way to make him aware of my disdain for the poke button would be to write on his wall.  At present time, he has 4.3 million “likes” (not friends, apparently his page is categorized as public figure, negating that final scene in The Social Network).  It would appear as though I would have to “like” him in order to post on his wall, and friends, that just isn’t going to happen.  It looks like my crusade against the poke button will have to end here, so I’ll just close by saying:  stop poking me David Opel.

On May 11th, Chris Lilley’s much-anticipated new series Angry Boys premiered on Australian television.  You might remember Lilley from his last series, the near perfect Summer Heights High, or maybe even from his first show, We Can Be Heroes.  Either way, if you’ve seen any of his work, you know the guy can really muster up the yucks.  Heck, after SHH, I was pretty sure the guy was incapable of doing any wrong.  Whoops!  As it turns out, third time’s a charm, or more appropriately, third time’s a blemish, because that is what Angry Boys is shaping up to be: a blemish on an otherwise flawless run of shows.  As of last week’s episode, the series is a third of the way through its twelve episode run, and I’m just about ready to brand it a bona fide dud.  I’m not the only one either; the ratings continue to slip with each new episode.

Angry Boys opens with a pair of familiar faces: returning from We Can Be Heroes is Daniel Sims and his twin brother Nathan.  Last we saw these two, they were recovering from a surgery in which Daniel donated one of his eardrums to Nathan, who was going deaf for some reason or other.  Welp, apparently the surgery failed, as Nathan is once again deaf and on his way to deaf people school.  The main arc of the show is Daniel’s attempt to throw his brother a going away party, with his idols (the Legends as they are collectively called) hopefully attending.

The best character on the show (by a fair margin) is Gran, the Sims’ racist grandmother, who also happens to run a juvenile detention center, presumably one filled with… ANGRY BOYS!  It’s puzzling that, although she’s the funniest part of the series, she has hardly been on the show since the first episode.  What gives!?  Maybe Lilley realizes she’s the breadwinner and is trying to minimize her role early in the series so her shhhhtick doesn’t get old.

The most boring character so far has been Blake Oakfield, a former surfing star who relives his glory days by heading his childhood gang, the Mucca Mad Boys, against their long time rival, the Fennel Hell Men.  The only noteworthy aspect of the character is that he has no balls, literally (they were shot off during a gang brawl).  There seemingly isn’t much more to this character other than being a surfer bra well past his prime (boring).

The worst of the worst  is S. mouse, a rapper popular with the tweens who is confined to house arrest after defecating on a police car.  I would go so far to say that it’s the worst character Lilley has ever imagined.  I’d just like to know, when did it become OK to do black face again (was it ever OK to begin with)?  Some might point to Robert Downey Jr.’s role in Tropic Thunder, but he was playing a white person donning black face.  Lilley is just straight up going black face.  I would maybe give him a pass if at the end of the day the character was actually funny, but unfortunately that isn’t the case.  The same end he is trying to achieve with a black rapper born to wealthy parents could have just as easily been achieved with a white rapper in the same situation.  Dare I say it would prolly be funnier, because there are few things funnier than rich white kids who talk like they’re from the ghetto (wiggers we used to call ’em).

The final Lilley character revealed was Jen Okazaki, mother of Japanese skating sensation Tim Okazaki.  She also manages his skateboarding empire “GayStyle Enterprises,” which is based on the false claim that her son is gay.  When I saw the trailer for the show, Jen looked to be the best character, and while I find her funny, I don’t think her act can maintain itself for another eight episodes (which is how I feel about most of the characters on the show).  It also doesn’t help that the actor who plays Tim is pretty terrible.

In the end, I think the real problem with the series is that Lilley is trying to do too much.  He should have stuck to the six episode format and cut out S. mouse and Blake Oakfield entirely.  The main arc of Angry Boys would still be intact if Daniel was trying to get just Tim Okazaki to attend Nathan’s going away party.  Another thing that annoys the shit out of me is when Tim, who is supposed to be American, uses the word “keen,” as in, “Mom was so keen on the whole gay angle.”  Americans don’t say that shit, do your research dickhead!  Anyway, I’ll continue to watch the show and hope for the best, but I gotta tell ya, it’s not looking good for Angry Boys.

I’m also hoping for a cameo by Jonah Takalua, whom I certainly consider to be an…  ANGRY BOYS!

Youth Lagoon isn’t some backwoods fishin’ hole the local kids go for a dip on sweaty sunny days, it’s the bedroom pop project of one Trevor Powers, Boise native extraordinaire and perhaps the next big thing, at least until another next big thing comes along.  At the very least, the guy’s Pitchfork approved (for now…), so he must be legit right?  He only has a few songs officially available, all of which are pretty dang good.  The Year of Hibernation, his forthcoming debut album, doesn’t currently have a release date, but if you’ve been a faithful reader of the blog, you’ll know how to get your hands on it, which I fully recommend you do!

The most striking thing about Powers is his fragile, reverb soaked vocals, which at times can be reminiscent of both Neil Young and Herbert from Family Guy.  His songs can get a bit same-y when it comes to instrumentation; they begin with a little soft keyboard noodling which gradually builds to include some clean guitar riffage and drum machine beats.  It’s prolly a good thing then that the album only contains eight tracks, because I could see his schhhhhtick getting old quickly.  But for now, I’m having a good time listening.  Don’t believe me?  Take a listen for yourself:

Wasn’t that effin good?!?  There’s seven more songs just like it waiting for you!  Don’t believe me?  Here’s another hot track:

This week, Minnesota Vikings first round pick Christian Ponder put together an informal mini camp for his new teammates.  At least he attempted to.  Only 7 guys actually showed up, which by my calculations is a pretty shitty turnout.  If it were a party at USF, there would be no need to worry about Public Safety showing up.

The Vikings will be implementing a new offense this season and Ponder was the only player who had received a playbook (due to this bullshit lockout) from incoming offensive coordinator Bill Musgrave, so it makes perfect sense for the potential starting QB to organize a workout for his new teammates.  Notably absent from the camp were the Vikings’ top four receiving weapons: WRs Sydney Rice, Percy Harvin, Bernard Berrian, and TE Visanthe Shiancoe.  The only one out of that group who I would give a pass to is Rice, whose future with the team is uncertain due to possibly being a free agent.  The other three bozos offered up some very lame excuses (Harvin lost his phone, Shanks had a “late conflict,” and Berrian missed his flight).  Aside from the obvious fact that it is extremely important for Ponder to develop some sort of chemistry with his receivers, each of these guys have their own reasons for needing to get to work ASAP:

Percy:  Head Coach Leslie Frazier has made it clear that he wants to feature Percy Harvin more in the offense, and with Rice possibly departing, the guy will prolly be Ponder’s best option.  That won’t be the case if they don’t develop some chemistry.  Lost his phone?  The guy is a millionaire, he’s prolly got like ten phones lying around his mansion.

Bernard:  The guy is coming off of two years of poor production.  It’s no secret that he and Brett Favre never really clicked, so it’s surprising that he wouldn’t take every opportunity he had to get in sync with Ponder.  I still think the guy has something to offer the team, but if he can’t even make his flights, how’s he supposed to catch touchdowns!

Visanthe:  By drafting another receiving TE in Kyle Rudolph, it looks like the Vikings are going to be using more 2 and 3 TE plays, not unlike the Patriots last season.  Now that there’s some healthy competition at the position, Shiancoe needs to get down to business, or before he knows it, he’ll be playing second string!

Speaking of the Patriots, they too had an informal training camp this week, and 40 guys showed up!  That’s nearly a full roster!  Is it any wonder why some teams are always winning Super Bowls while others are always choking at NFC Championship games?

At the very least, all of those guys should have shown up to get the damn playbook.  What the fuck were they thinking!  Sure there will be other training camps in the future, but it’s never too early to start preparing for the upcoming season (assuming there is one).  Kudos to Ponder, shame on those other fuckers.  I hope Rudolph and WR Greg Camarillo (who were both in attendance) end up catching all the TDs.

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