November 30, 2004 - We Lost Too
   We Now Return To Being Dorks: Proving once again that no one can keep a secret, Ken Jennings lost tonight. Well, he lost a whole bunch of weeks ago, so perhaps by tonight he's done crying into his $2,522,700.

   Congratulations are due to two parties on a day like this -- the Mormon church, who is due a $250,000 payday, and Tempy-No-More, whose new employer will be giving KJ free tax preparation for life.

   I consider that "marketing." Therefore, it all ties together.

   And it's not like I have anything else to write about.


   • I learned two things tonight at trivia. Well, there may have been more, but these seem to stand out above and beyond the rest.

   In chat speak, PTMM stands for 'Please Tell Me More', not "Please take my money" or "Please thank my Mom" or whatever else I came up with.

   Perhaps more importantly, however, I learned that if you've spent many of your formative years chatting online, and the trivia guy comes up with an acronym you've never used ... there will be hotness.

   Hotness AWA general anger, the kind that will lead you to get up and BBIAB, that will definitely not make you BFF, just B/C, BOME, but CMIIW and DBEYR, PTMM is totally not a phrase that should be called "popular."

   EOD.

   Dork translator here.

   Also, a note for the fine folks at California Pizza Kitchen: the California Club pizza would be a lot better if you minced the avocado on the top, as opposed to putting pizza slices of the stuff on pizza slices. Kinda hard to eat that way.

   I know you've got a little more experience making pizzas, but I've got a little more experience eating them.


November 29, 2004 - And I Haven't Played In Weeks
   Programming Note: Ken Jennings won his 74th consecutive game on Jeopardy! tonight, pushing his total winnings to $2,520,700. He 75th straight game will air on Tuesday night ... not that his 75th straight game means anything more than any of the others or anything. I mean, why would it or something?

   Though really, I heard this rumor ...

   Four / Five / Four Straight: Clearly, this weekly Fantasy Frenzy is the best idea I've had since deciding the latest two vacation writeups would be much better if I completed them before the New Year.

Name:
Whale City Sprawl
Whale City Sprawl
Foster St. Sprawl
League:
League1 (Vito)
CanAm Football Lg. (Mark)
Fantasy Football 04 (S-T)
W-L (Rank):
8-4 (3rd of 14)
7-5 (6th of 12)
6-5-1 (4th of 10)
Latest Game:
Win, 72.87-23.20
Win, 115.37-108.65
Win, 60-33
Top Scorers:
QB Brett Favre
(22.55 - 215/3 TD/0 INT)
----------
RB Corey Dillon
(14.15 - 123 yds. / 1 TD)
----------
WR Santana Moss
(11.12 - 109 yds. / 1 TD)
QB Peyton Manning
(40.92 - 236/6 TD/0 INT)
----------
RB Willis McGahee
(31.10 - 116 yds. / 4 TD)
----------
RB Reuben Droughns
(10.85 - 102 yds. / 1 TD)
QB Michael Vick
(22 - 212/3 (2) TD/1 INT)
----------
TE Antonio Gates
(14 - 92 yds. / 2 TD)
----------
WR Derrick Mason
(9 - 87 yds. / 1 TD)
Ovrl. Scoring:
7th of 14
6th of 12
9th of 10
Playoffs:
Top 8 - Wks. 15-17
Top 4 - Wks. 15 & 16
Top 4 - Wks. 16 & 17

   The streak likely ends this week -- I face the first-place team in the last two leagues -- but it was nice while it lasted. Especially since I more or less needed every one of those ten touchdowns from Manning and McGahee to win in Coen's league.

   Because these are crapshoots or anything. Though so is poker.

DVD Is Great, But The Memories Were Greater
-- Before anyone brings it up, the fact that I call the production scattershod, then write a column in somewhat the same way is not by accident. It's called "overemphasizing the point."

   • Today, while traveling with my boss to help with our high school Super Team photo shoots, I was told I "seem to pack in more fun than most people." This was after I explained a weekend where I:

   -- was mauled by my cousins;
   -- drove three-quarters of the way back to Whale City for a comedy show;
   -- crashed a high school reunion not really my own
   -- and had a chat with the ex-girlfriend who hates me

   was the kind of series of events I'm looking for on a regular basis.

   At that point, I didn't have the heart to tell him I need both Saturday and Sunday off this week, because I:

   -- have been invited ice skating for this girl's birthday
   -- and have been 'invited' to this TV station's holiday party

   Deep down, I think this is payback for all those years I was a dork, rebelling for all those days I wasted in Western Massachusetts going "Wow. Life sure is boring here in the country."

   Though deep down, I also think this kid's mom believes her son's card playing is her ticket out of Texas.

"It's fun. Itís exciting. It's glamorized on TV and in the media in a way that other addictions are not," says Keith Whyte, executive director of the National Council on Problem Gambling. "There's the impression that through skill you can beat the odds. But randomness is always going to have a bigger factor in determining the outcome than your skill. And unfortunately, that's not the message these kids get."

   I'd immediately be demanding the media stop being the scapegoat, but if you'll excuse me, I need to run away from the stampede of people with calculators who want to beat Mr. Whyte up for the 'skill' comment.


November 28, 2004 - Holiday Week End
   Uni Watch: When it comes to uniforms, there is a fine line between looking good enough to make me consider dressing like I was 17 again and looking bad enough to make me call you out on it. Today's graphic displays of orange tread that line.

Broncos vs. Bengals

   On the left, the Broncos actually look striking in the snow. On the right, the Bengals look like they need a good striking. Sadly, the contrast here is so large, such wordplay actually feels necessary.

   Of course, to go a little TMQ on this, I'm pretty sure the Broncos are winless in these new-school orange jerseys, while Cincinnati today gave up 48 points and won. Insert comments about the football gods here.


   • A few days ago, I'd told you all about the Thanksgiving celebration my extended family has up in the mountains. Short of taking a photo of the cut I got in my forehead, I'm not sure I really conveyed just what Thanksgiving really is to me and the family.

   I think this picture does it the proper justice.

Toddler Beat-up
-- Yes. Toddlers beat me up.

   This has gone on for generations, and the fact that the tradition has apparently resumed after it looked dead and gone would be heartwarming if such a thing wasn't so entirely frightening.

   On the plus side, Ray and Emma's dad flipped me off as soon as I walked in the door ... because he'd seen me walking around behind Larry Lucchino in St. Louis. All things balance out.

   Also on that note in a day of talking about things that already happened, the high school reunion I crashed.

   Eric proved the only other one from my year to go, though one of the bartenders was a '98 grad too. The presence of other female intruders mitigated this a bit, since we kinda just got a table off to the side and stayed out of everybody's way.

   Well, until I won the aforementioned raffle, at which point I decided I should celebrate with a lot of open-bar Sam Adams.

   The aforemetioned Sam Adams also made things a lot more exciting when I noticed ex-girlfriend No. 2 Alison, a member of the proper class, was in attendance. Given we were just in a downtown Springfield bar, avoidance wasn't exactly easy, but I managed ... until I started chatting with her best friend, who is now married and far easier to have a conversation with than a girl with whom I apparently parented an IM smiley with.

   Apparently, No. 2 did not enjoy the fact my default story of the evening was I'd finished two credits shy of graduation and was too ashamed to tell anyone. We started out at "I fucking hate your guts," but did work down a little bit from there, so that's good. As was when she grabbed Julie and asked her "Is he treating you good?" at least five times in a ten-second period.

   Given getting three of the five in the same room is as close as I'll likely ever get to my dream Girlfriend Convention, this couldn't have gone any better.


   We did eventually make our way over to the bar that has the mechanical bull in it, but sadly, the most extravagant thing there was noticing everyone was at least moderately drunk and arm wrestling Alison (not to be confused with this Alison) on one of these tables.

   She had to have been drunk, because I won ... or was about to win until she cheated.

   And really, ending a conversation with an ex with the word "cheated" is the kind of thing every writer dreams of.

   Especially since the actual ending -- drunk Todd spilling water all over drunk me -- was probably even more "had to be there" entertaining.

   I've said it once, and I'll say it again -- if you don't go to your high school reunion, I hate you. Or something like that.


November 27, 2004 - Reunion Reunion
   • To the Agawam Class of 1999, I thank you for not only allowing me to pay and attend your reunion as a party crasher, but for pulling my raffle ticket for a $100 American Express gift card -- if only I'd had the gumption to actually walk up and claim it myself, though I know Erik will enjoy it.

   And as for Denny's, well, I think the Meat Lover's Skillet is a train that has sailed.

   Given the state I'm in right now, we'll be making two days worth of stories out of this.

   And oh are there stories.


November 26, 2004 - No Fat Chicks (This Year)
   Mitch Hedberg and Stephen Lynch: After we walked about a half-mile out of our way, this show was excellent, even considering we were late due to blame that will be passed around. Course, considering this page exists and Lynch's Comedy Central special showed up at 4 a.m. on our return, it's not like we missed anything.

   Also among the highlights, however, was seeing this paper's downtown offices. Kind of place you'd almost have to live in downtown Providence to take advantage of ... what an awful development that would be.


   • In a series of circumstances that really don't need any explanation, I ended up in two of the three biggest malls in New England today. Both had an Old Navy.

   Somehow, it's heartwarming to know that the exact same clothing exists thousands of miles apart, but just in a different orientation than it is everywhere else. Like, the sweaters are near other things.

   I guess you just had to be there.

   And in keeping with tradition, I bought two things today simply to show the nation I'm all for capitalism. Course, they were both for me, but at least one was a work-related purchase.

   Yeah, ultimately free is good.


November 25, 2004 - Insert Cornucopia Here
   Juxtaposition: It occurred to me yesterday after I finished writing that, on Wednesday morning, people who came here saw a big picture of a certain Hollywood startlet.

   On Thursday morning, people not only saw an elderly woman wearing black lipstick, but my face superimposed on a grilled cheese sandwich.

   Somewhere in all of this is a condemnation of my very being. If you can find it, give yourself a round of applause and an extra scoop of cranberry in the gigantic sandwich you'll be wolfing down this afternoon.

   Speaking Of Cranberry: The case of cranberry sauce seems one place where Food Network has done more harm than good.

   Gone are the days where most people trying to impress just put out the plain old "Jellied Cranberry Sauce" -- complete with the pattern of the can intact until mashing commeces. Now, it's necessary to make some cranberry compote/slurry, complete with lemon zest, orange peel, actual cranberries ... whereas before it was possible to consume more cranberry than anything else, now doing so would cause a stomachache three dozen Smirnoff Ices could only hope to equal.

   Of course, such talk comes from someone who was beaten by young relatives for the better part of nine hours, so be sure to put a grain of salt in that aforementioned Ethiopian-feeding sandwich. Photographic evidencec to come later.

   Agawam 42, West Springfield 6: Just as it should be when a team 7-3 going in faces a 5-5 one. I thank them for warranting my not going.

   In the same vein, congrats are due to Whale City, who beat rival Durfee in a game best described as "when slumps collide." That's what I'm used to seeing annually anyway, such as when two-win Agawam beat one-win West Side not too long ago.

   Because such things are worth getting hypothermia over.


   • On a holiday, it's nice to know celebrities are just like us.

Turkey Pie

Actresses Jennifer Love Hewitt, left, and Whitney Cummings laugh as they serve pumpkin pies on Wednesday at the annual Thanksgiving meal for the homeless at the Los Angeles Mission in Los Angeles.
Celebrities volunteered along with others to help serve the homeless a traditional Thanksgiving meal.
(AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes)

   Though in your life, I'd imagine there's not a homeless person just out of frame seething, silently or not, about getting his damned piece of pumpkin pie.


November 24, 2004 - The Drinkiest Day Of The Year
   Completing The Current Events Trifecta: Since I've already brought up JFK Reloaded and the hunters shooting hunters in Wisconsin, the logical conclusion is ... the Virgin Mary Grilled Cheese.

Cheese Sandwich

   First off, how many other PR sites have a section just for "Streaking Events." Second, can anyone explain why black is allowed as a lipstick color? Third, how about why, if she believes this sandwich is blessed, is she not concerned what the King of Kings is going to think of her profiting from it? Fourth ...

   I don't want to take all the answers. I just know given the face on the sandwich, it was worth every penny.

Cheese!
-- Name altered to lessen blasphemy.


   • I found out tonight that this very site is blocked by Websense at a Michigan high school as a "personal Web page." Which it is, so I can't really complain too much.

   For a fleeting batch of seconds, I thought I was a renegade.

   Then, I found out it was because my name was Jon.

   Scintillating stuff, isn't it?

   Go. Be fruitful. Save room for pie.


November 23, 2004 - Oh, The Cutting Room Floor
   Heartwarming: One can't overstress the feeling of goodness that comes from realizing your viewpoint is in the majority.

Boston.com LL Feature
-- Boston.com feature

   I can now safely admit the two times I actually heard the song on the radio, my first thought was "Party All The Time" by Eddie Murphy.

   Sorry, LL. At least you're still hot.

   Advice To The Alma Mater: This should not be confused as "Advice To The Student Newspaper," who nearly tricked me into thinking something hilarious was happening with, "Gov. Cracks Down On Bootleggers".

   You have built a beautiful new building on Cummington Street for the Biology Department ... on the footprint of the former movie theater is a research facility well in line with the Photonics Center.

   A building that makes the internationally renowned College of Communication sitting in front of it looks more like the child left in the basement than it really is.

   For the love of God, do something. Set the place on fire and collect the insurance. Sell the School of Hospitality Administration to the highest bidder. Send an extra bill to parents of College of General Studies students and hope they don't notice. Anything.

   It looks like the lockers in the halls of CAS ... before they replaced them.


   • It's amazing what a person can learn.

   From spam.

Subject: Hey Dude
Date: Tue, 23 Nov 2004
From: Alberto
To: Cooch

   A D U L T DVDs

   What an amazing year, first off, it was the year of woodstock. On a small dairy farm owned by farmer Max yasgur, there was a 4 day concert. they had excpected between 10,000 and 20,000 people would show up, instead they got 400,000. This concert, most say, was the peak of music. it was everything that music was during that time. everyone used eachothers drugs, sat on eachothers blankets, etc. because that what the 60's were about. peace, and love. Preformers such as: The who, the greatful dead, Janis Joplin, Jimi Hendrix, CCR, santana, the band, and a whole lot more, played their music on those 4 days. The Highway all around the pasture where it was held was jammed traffic for 4 days, all i can say is, i wish i was there. Other things of musical significance happened that year too, The Beatles made their last public preformance on the roof of the Apple building. John lennon married Yoko Ono, and paul mccartney married linda eastmen. Led Zeppelin released their first album, as did David Bowie, Yes, and Neil Young. And then there was the infamous Altamont, California Rolling stones concert where a fan was stabbed to death by a member of the hells angels, who the stones hired to be security for the concert. Some people think that that concert showed the faliure of the so-called "hippies" because of the lack of peace and love. The turtles preformed at the White house, and Mark Volman fell of the stage 5 times, It was the beginning of musical careers for Alice cooper, Black sabbath, David bowie, The Doobie brothers, and Judas preist. It was the end of a musical career for Cream, and they realeased their final album 'goodbye'. Some other significant albums that were released: Let it bleed - The rolling stones, Santana - Santana, More - Pink Floyd, Live Dead - The Greatful dead, and Tommy- The Who. Some other things that happened that year: Louis Armstrong landed on the moon. on july 16, 1969, apollo 11 lifted off for the moon. on july 20, it landed on the moon, and louis armstrong made his famous statement: "one small step for man, one large step for mankind" and took the first step on the moon. it was covered on TV that night, and the theme song for it being david bowies "Space oddity" (an amazing song). In Sports,montreal won the stanley cup, beating st.louis 4 - 0. Mickey mantle also announced his retirement that year.

   If I could just put my finger on what this has to do with selling adult DVDs, I think we'd be getting somewhere as a nation.


November 22, 2004 - I Voted ... Britney
   JFK Reloaded: In the pantheon of gaming, this might be the Worst Game Ever.

   However, I can't help but be intrigued.

   Fantasy Frenzy: Going into the Monday Night game, I held tenuous leads in all three of my games. By putting this box up here, you can probably figure out things didn't finish all that badly.

Name:
Whale City Sprawl
Whale City Sprawl
Foster St. Sprawl
League:
League1 (Vito)
CanAm Football Lg. (Mark)
Fantasy Football 04 (S-T)
W-L (Rank):
7-4 (4th of 14)
6-5 (8th of 12)
5-5-1 (4th of 10)
Latest Game:
Win, 57.58-47.95
Win, 66.77-63.24
Win, 54-48
Top Scorers:
RB Edgerrin James
(16.75 - 204 yds. / 1 TD)
----------
RB Corey Dillon
(14.90 - 98 yds. / 2 TD)
----------
QB Brett Farve
(10.46 - 383/1 TD/2 INT)
QB Peyton Manning
(26.47 - 211/4 TD/1 INT)
----------
RB Reuben Droughns
(15.55 - 166 yds. / 1 TD)
----------
LB Tedy Bruschi
(7 - 7 tackles)
K Jason Elam
(10 - 4 PATs / 2-2 FG)
----------
WR Donte' Stallworth
(9 - 122 yds. / 1 TD)
----------
TE Antonio Gates (9)
DEF Tampa Bay (9)
MNF Scoring:
19.05 - 25.92
7.00 - 14.30
N/A - 2
Playoffs:
Top 8 - Wks. 15-17
Top 4 - Wks. 15 & 16
Top 4 - Wks. 16 & 17

   And sadly, this does all mean something outside of the abstract world of "pride" and "respect."

   Baseball Talk: They partied with the World Series trophy today in Springfield, as the AP quoted a guy I probably should know.

Chris Duby was another fan who walked away from the rally with a personalized memory. Waiting at the spot behind City Hall where he and a few dozen figured correctly that Nixon would step out of his car, Duby got the outfielder to sign a jersey with the player's name and number on it.

"This is a huge thrill for me," said Duby, a 25-year-old mortgage broker from Agawam. "I was at the first game of spring training this year, and I said then that they were going to win the World Series."

   Bold prediction, Chris. Good for you.

   Of course, Larry Lucchino then needed to make his prerequisite quote for what wrestlers call a "cheap pop."

Even Red Sox President president Larry Lucchino took a jab
at the Yankees while praising western Massachusetts as
"the tip of the spear aimed at the empire in New York."

   First off, it's Western Massachusetts or WMass if you're headline writing. If you're going to ignore us for eleven months out of the year, at least give us our capital letter. Second, Larry should be aware it's typically not good to give your spear a tip that is rectangular ... all it tends to do is push your enemy and perhaps catch him with a blunt corner from time to time.

   However, that was not the day's driest news.

The Washington Nationals

   Congratulations to all involved on this bold new choice for the Washington baseball franchise. In marrying the bad name of the first Washington baseball team with the bad hats of the second Washington baseball team and combining them with what looks to be a rejected logo from Clubhouse, Major League Baseball finally has what it has sought for so long.

   Another faceless team wearing red, white and blue.

   At least Selig was pulling for them to be the Washington Senators.


   • And finally today, me.

Can't We All Just Get Back To Sports
-- I hate the headline, since I'm pretty sure it's a repeat of a previous column. The piece isn't, but it does fall under of my general category of thinking other people are stupid.

   And yesterday's 'Super Secret Plan,' among other things, was to go with a silver-gray shirt tonight. As it was put to me, it really brings out the color of my eyes.

   Yes, I just said that out loud.

Silver Simulation
-- Image dorkiness set to 300 percent.

   The surprise turned out to be that I was on the show for nearly the whole hour ... I earned the right to be one of "Lou's Cannons" and shoot my mouth off on all the topics that Lou didn't forget I was around for.

   Sadly, the Nationals topic was one of those, and it was before I realized just butting in was my best course of action. Though having four people in studio couldn't have been easy to deal with.

   And he may not actually have called me "Doug" once ... someone else will have to confirm or deny that.


   However, the true surprise came when I got the guest list a few hours before the show. Obviously, the basketball brawl was the lead topic, with Lou having the four of us for the duration, plus an attorney/player agent on satellite and a former show regular on the phone.

   A regular who you see regularly on ESPN as an NBA analyst.

   One Stephen A. Smith.

   Sadly, Stephen A. and I did not get in a shouting match ... I've agreed with everything he's said on this topic since the moment it happened, and chiming in with such things makes for real scintillating TV. Plus, the man was busy going off on Jack McCaffery, who I was on with last time and spent much of the first segment playing the role of "angry old white man" perfectly.

   Maybe he really feels that way, I don't know.

   I do know when I finally jumped in on the next topic, "I know enough to stay out of Stephen A.'s way" was the best possible opening.


   As always, the clip will up here before too long -- my tech support staff has been known to spend weekend nights programming when needed, and is as reliable as they come.

   It's kinda like when I used to spend down time writing vacation reports.

   Man, that was a long time ago.


November 21, 2004 - Tilley's Eve
   Programming Note: Lest anyone forget Monday night marks my mighty return to not-really cable access -- Lou Tilley's Sports Connection is having me on sometime in the 11 p.m. hour. Possibly for plenty of the 11 p.m. hour.

   Throw a party. Call Grandma. A good time will be had by all, especially when you get to hear my take on the NBA brawl. Somehow, I think it'll come up.

   Choosing Poorly: On a day in sports where Pacers' players lost $10 million, Eli Manning stunk less than anticipated and the closest points race in NASCAR history ran to a conclusion, what catches my eye?

   Why, 5 hunters dead after Wis. treestand dispute, of course.

A dispute among deer hunters over a tree stand in northwestern Wisconsin erupted Sunday in a series of shootings that left five people dead and three others injured, officials said.

The incident happened when two hunters were returning to their rural cabin on private land in Sawyer County and saw the suspect in one of their tree stands, County Chief Deputy Tim Zeigle said. A confrontation and shooting followed.

It's not known who shot first, Zeigle said.

The suspect was "sniping" at the victims with a SKS assault-style rifle, Zeigle said. He was "chasing after them and killing them," he said.

"When you're hunting you don't expect somebody to try to shoot you and murder you," [Bill Wagner, 72, of Oshkosh] said. "You have no idea who is coming up to you."

   As gruesome a story as this is, there is still irony in a hunter not expecting shootings and murders on a hunting trip, right?

   And really, I bet the guy up in the tree thought the people down below were so beautiful, he just had to kill them.

   Wow. This is awful even by my standards.


   • Those interested will be happy to know the 'Super Secret Plan' has been initiated. Based loosely on a four-hour Instant Messenger conversation and the accompanying discussion, those who currently know about the 'Super Secret Plan' will be the only ones who will ever know about the 'Super Secret Plan.'

   Unless, of course, the 'Super Secret Plan' is worked through to completion. In which case, the world will be shaken to its very core.

   Alright then. Since that just appealed to exactly one other person, something for everyone else. Seinfeld's puffy shirt ... in the Smithsonian.

"This might be the first joke inducted into
the Smithsonian Institution," Seinfeld noted.

   It only gets better in the official press release.

The shirt will go on view Nov. 24 in the museum's "Icons of Popular Culture" display, alongside Jim Henson's Kermit The Frog puppet and Dorothy's "Ruby Slippers" from The Wizard of Oz.

   A inanimate puppet, stage shoes and a pirate shirt.

   I hope Osama can make it.


November 20, 2004 - Tambor Sort Of Equals Williams
   The Soup: Given the amount of crap that's on VH-1 in this vein, the similar offering from E! is surprisingly tolerable. Joel McHale is probably annoying in larger doses, but he's used in such a way that the "tiring of him" part would hit after the show had been over.

   Of course, this could just be because I'm still sad that Talk Soup is gone.

   Or that it was 2 a.m. and I was half-asleep through the airing.


   • Looked at purely on its own, The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie is worth about $6.50 of the $9.50 admission price. An entertaining entity if you only, for example, just stop on the show when you see it's airing, the viewing would have been greatly more enjoyable if we'd followed through on Friday night's plan to see it while intoxicated.

   However, when you compare it to other films made from TV shows, it's not exactly going to fit well into the narrative. In so much as I understand it.

   I mean, two Krusty Krabs?

   Even I know that's bull.

   I would, however, like to thank the kid about ten rows behind me in the theater. Were it not for his insight, I might have missed that none of the characters on screen had penises.

   Maybe he felt he needed to get his money's worth.


November 19, 2004 - Gentlemen, Start Your Keyboards
   A Shout-Out To My Homies At CN8: It's time to go shopping again ... your favorite Tuesday sports columnist from Whale City will be appearing on Lou Tilley's Sports Connection this coming Monday night on CN8, The Comcast Network.

   This will be my third appearance on the show, and given the saying about third times and charms, I'm hoping this Lou correctly identifies both my first name and workplace.

   I'm also taking suggestions on shirt color, but the early favorite is blood red ... just like my soul.

   The Media ... Working For You: Congratulations are due to the kids in BU College Bowl, who actually convinced the campus fishwrap to cover the Rhett Rumble.

   Given I spent two years working at said fishwrap, one might think this is something I should have gotten on a long time ago. However, given I worked at the paper and was the Governor General of the club, clearly coverage of BUCB would be seen by the masses as an extreme form of nepotism.

   I wish I was exaggerating this.

   Then again, I wish this weren't the quote that got lead play.

"[Rhett Rumble] means that students are fighting with
their brainpower," said Khan, a College of Engineering junior.

   My children, I don't think I would have joined if that was my introduction to things. It's called PR ... head over to COM and just start bribing people with movie passes. If it worked here, no reason it can't again.


   • You may have noticed I said next to nothing regarding the vaunted "Monday Night Football" flap. Some might think this would be because I wasn't going to give ABC the publicity it so richly desired for a show I wouldn't watch if I was on salary.

   However, that's not the case. I was merely saving up my moral indignation for a discussion of ...

   BASKET-BRAWL!

   Sadly, ESPN totally ripped off my headline. However, as far as I can tell, they do not have this gem from young Matty Cooch:

"Well, at least Ron Artest will have time to work on his rap album now."

   Just a week in the business and he's already got it down.


November 18, 2004 - Goodbye, Goodbye. (Adieu!)
   Me Too: Count me among the growing number of people who have now heard 'Vertigo' enough to decide U2 has ceased to be cool. Not so much for "sell out" reasons, but more because Bono has ceased to be world conscious and is now just annoying.

   I believe one of my poker-playing compatriots put it best after the night's 14th playing of the band's iPod commercial recently:

"So ... what exactly would constitute them needing to do a second take?"

   In honor of that, I illegally downloaded the aforementioned song. Not so much because I wanted it, but because it just needed to be done.


   • At the office, we download our photos from the AP through a Web browser-based program that displays the full contents of the wire in a sort of grid -- four photos across, about 40 to a page. It's not as convenient a system as the one we had in Nashua, but it gets the job done.

   And occasionally, it creates a nice row of photos that should have nothing to do with each other, but just look so right together.

   For example, the following three photos came across, in this order, at some point tonight:

Clay, Vanilla, Ruth
-- A logical combination: Clay Aiken, Vanilla Ice, Dr. Ruth

   Admittedly I've had some time to think this over, but the questions from this just come pouring out.

Clay Aiken is an American heartthrob?

Is Vanilla Ice wearing a primitive Abercrombie shirt?

Is Dr. Ruth familiar with whitening gels?

Is Dr. Ruth Clay's mother?

Is she his fraternal twin?

Did Vanilla ever screw up carving the stripes in his eyebrows,
having to shave them totally off and just start over?

Why do I have the overwhlming desire
to go to the new Clinton Presidential Center?

   By all means add your own, especially if they're funnier than these or involve shots at Hilary Rodham Clinton, the only current potential Democratic presidential choice I would drive the 240 miles to vote against.

"I'm so proud to be here -- to be with
so many old and dear friends from Arkansas ..."
-- ... the state I threw away when I wanted to be taken seriously. Go Yankees!


November 17, 2004 - Yes? No. No. No.
   Ryan Does It Right: I rip so many columnists who write thought columns, I suppose it's only fair I post a link to one that isn't half bad. Go figure it's from the guy whose career I'm shooting for.

   Well, minus all the NBA coverage. I'd rather wear a bag full of my own vomit.

   Agganis Arena: 47 days away, and still have no plan of how to get inside as a fan short of paying $175 a seat to Ace Ticket, a place I've been hoping gets firebombed since the day I learned of its existence.

   By the way, I'd like to thank Boston University for not only whoring out to Ticketmaster, but for putting tickets onsale to all the games on Sept. 15, then conveniently not letting alumni like me know.

   Don't think I won't remember that the next time you fuckers call me looking for money. And yes, I'm significantly more angry now than I was when I started writing this update.


   • Many people had irrational reactions to the presidential election result. I've decided to channel that sort of rage to something, I think, is far more topical and at least tangentially related.

   If you were offended by Monday Night Football's opening this week, in which a somewhat unattractive woman bared her naked back to the TV camera in a pretaped vignette to promo a TV drama, get the fuck out of my country.

   Immediately.

   My reason for all this rage, aside from the reasons enunciated above, is threefold. One fold you don't get to hear about, and the other two folds ...

   Well, it's best put like this. There are things you look forward to that don't turn out the way you hoped they would ... it's a downer once you realize they're over, and they didn't turn out at all like you hoped. Then there are the spoils that really matter ... the things like a good job, things that you work hard for and truly appreciate everyday.

   If tarnish starts to appear on those things, even if it ultimately doesn't change things for you at all, it brings you down. Having to look back for what was the greatest time, rather than thinking it's still to come.

   Obviously, all the things above aren't the kinds of things I can properly spell out in a forum like this. It does little for you to read this stuff, but usually, writing even in this way makes me feel better.

   Today, it doesn't.

   That's probably what's most disconcerting of all.


November 16, 2004 - I Got A New Coaster
   Bond Alert: Colin Farrell, it seems, does not want to be James Bond. Instead, he wants to be Sonny Crockett on 'Miami Vice'.

Farrell would play the part originated by Don Johnson. Jamie Foxx is negotiating to co-star as his Crockett's partner, Ricardo Tubbs, played by Philip Michael Thomas in the TV series. Michael Mann, the director of "Collateral," "Heat" and "The Insider" and the executive producer of the "Miami Vice" TV series, is developing the story, which Farrell said wouldn't go the comedy route, like the films inspired by "Dragnet" and "Starsky & Hutch."

"It's not a comedy at all. It's cool," said Farrell in an interview. "Michael Mann wrote it and when he writes it's good and it goes pretty deep."

Farrell said he wasn't sure whether his Crockett would have the three-day growth of beard that Johnson turned into an '80s fashion statement, but he would definitely have an updated wardrobe.

"I don't think I'll be wearing a silver shiny suit," he said.

   So to recap, Colin Farrell and Jamie Foxx are possibly going to star in an update version of "Miami Vice," opting to replace nostalgia with gritty, 21st-century crime.

   Remember that next time you tell someone National Treasure looks like the worst movie ever made.


   • As part of the whole "Fleet turning into Bank of America" turn of events, I received a new credit card in the mail today. Gone is the "Smart Chip" of my Fleet Fusion Card -- who looked cool but whose greatest use was crunching differently when I cut the card up. In is the Bank of America's Platinum card, with a design on it so ugly, I wouldn't even wear it on a T-shirt.

   The paperwork that came with the card said all kinds of lovely things about how said card will change my life for the better, but the only physical figmentation of this so far was in what they call a Mini Card -- it's the size of the run-of-the-mill supermarket card, and it clips to your keyring so you don't have to get out your gigantic actual credit card when you just need to run through a card reader.

   What an excellent idea they've come up with. I absolutely love it.

   Because really, when you misplace your keys or lose them altogether, don't you also want to lose control of your finances as well?

   On the plus side, though, think of the seconds I'll save with my card always at the ready instead of inconveniently stowed in a pants pocket about four inches away from my other pants pocket.

   If only I could find someway to use all this smarminess for good instead of nothing.


November 15, 2004 - Competitions Few Care About
   A Sporting Roundup: First off, because I love charts that no one reads, it's the Fantasy Frenzy.

Name:
Whale City Sprawl
Whale City Sprawl
Foster St. Sprawl
League:
League1 (Vito)
CanAm Football Lg. (Mark)
Fantasy Football 04 (S-T)
W-L (Rank):
6-4 (6th of 14)
5-5 (8th of 12)
4-5-1 (7th of 10)
Latest Game:
Win, 65.67-40.69
Win, 102.60-87.33
Win, 34-23
Top Scorers:
QB Brett Favre
(28.72 - 236 / 4 TD)
----------
RB Corey Dillon
(7.80 - 151 yds. / 0 TD)
----------
K Morten Andersen (7)
DEF Washington (7)
QB Peyton Manning
(32.40 - 320/5 TD/2 INT)
----------
TE Dallas Clark
(18.10 - 102 yds. / 2 TD)
----------
RB Kevan Barlow
(15.05 - 47 yds. / 2 TD)
RB Emmitt Smith
(14 - 67 yds. / 2 TD)
----------
RB Deuce McAllister
(9 - 127 yds. / 1 TD)
----------
WR Derrick Mason
(8 - 91 yds. / 1 TD)
Moving Up?:
Teams 2-6 are all 6-4.
Teams 5-9 are all 5-5.
Teams 4-6 are all 5-5.
Playoffs:
Top 8 - Wks. 15-17
Top 4 - Wks. 15 & 16
Top 4 - Wks. 16 & 17

   And no, I'm not really sure how we settled on the scoring system in the S-T league either. All I know is I'm about one good trade away from running the table and winning all the cash.

   In the Absurd Stat Of The Day department, something we all can enjoy regarding the power of Barry Bonds.

Bonds hit 45 homers in 373 at-bats, while Beltre hit a major
league-leading 48 in 598 at-bats and Pujols had 46 in 592.

   Filling in the blanks just cheapens it. Even if the blanks could be full of creamy, creamy steroids.

Labor Pains Seem To Be Avoidable
-- Since the day I was hired, I've always dreamed of this moment ... the day I could get the name of Samuel Gompers into the sports section.

   Attention LiveJournal Fans: Just so you know, I have created the greatest icon in LJ history for use in Jon's One Post Journal. I highly encourage you to go look at it and comment aimlessly about its complete and utter greatness.

   How great is it?

   For a brief moment, there were two posts in the One Post Journal. However, I then decided my integrity was far more important, and the mystery post was DELETED!


   • Since I consider it my civic duty to keep up with the burgeoning "sport" of competitive eating, congratulations to Noted Japanese Person Takeru Kobayashi, who ate 69 more Krystal hamburgers than I have ever eaten in just eight minutes on Saturday at the Hamilton Place Mall somewhere deep in the red states.

   And just because I enjoy the promotional writing of the IFOCE far too much ...

Florida's Harry Richter has long been a fan of competitive eating. In recent years his wife has maintained a focus on family and profession while Harry has, at times, put both aside in favor of watching repeats of Gutbusters on Discovery and Nathan's on ESPN. So when Harry learned that the IFOCE's Harvest Series had two scheduled stops in armís reach of Floridaís infamous I-4 corridor, he quickly signed up.

Approaching the 84 Lumber World Baked Bean Eating Championships in DeLand, Harry was seemingly unconcerned at the fact he'd be competing against big name eaters like LaRue, Janus and Reeves. He showed similar poise at the outset of the final Krystal qualifier where he stood aside such giants as Kobayashi and Booker.

Perhaps Harry was unworried because he knew something the eating community did not know: Harry's got game.

   Also, there is an Eater X among us, and I know just what he's going for.

Eater X, meet Ultimate Warrior
-- Timothy Janus, Jim Hellwig. Jim Hellwig ...

   I know my experience at an eating contest would be improved if, after it was over, Eater X grabbed the tablecloth and started shaking it like a ring rope.


November 14, 2004 - Stars And Spades Forever
   It's Worth Noting: As of this writing, Cooch is 7-0 in games of billiards with fellow S-T employees at The Garden, the pub of choice for Noted Weekly Event "Sunday Night Drinking."

   He is also a little uncomfortable about the use of the third person here, but is going with it anyway.

   Officially Announcing 'Brookeamania': Thanks to our local insipid pop station that plays too much hip-hop, Hulk Hogan has hit SouthCoast.

More than 2,500 music and wrestling fans alike stretched from Old Navy all the way back to JC Penney to see both Ms. Hogan and her father, wrestling legend Hulk Hogan.

"Usually when I'd come to Dartmouth, I'd be beating up guys like Vince McMahon," Mr. Hogan told the audience. "Well, Hulkamania is taking a little rest, and now it's time for Brookeamania to run wild!"

   Wait, it gets better.

He also had some advice for the young males in the audience that might be getting ideas about the newest pop sensation.

"Any of you guys that come up here and ask to take her out on a date, you have to beat me at arm wrestling first," he said, flexing his 24-inch "pythons" for effect, as the crowd roared.

   And yet, had I been there, I would have been most excited to meet this man, a one-time, part-time MBTA fare collector in Winchester who caused quite the to-do when his bag of cocaine was mistaken for anthrax in February.

   Brutus Beefcake, selling you tokens. God Bless America.

   New England 29, Buffalo 6: It's at moments like this I like to remind everyone that, in the great Brady vs. Bledsoe debate, I chose Bledsoe.

The Numbers Don't Lie

   And no, I wasn't forced.


   • Many of you may be familiar with VH1's Best Week Ever, the barely watchable derivative of the "I Love The [insert decade here]" shows that peaked with the '80s and are goign downhill by the moment.

   The cow's best milk is usually in the first squeeze, gang. Part of what worked was nostalgia for things '80s ... nostalgia being hard to build when you're making "I Love Last Week!"

   Anyway, the show builds up to a big final pronouncement of who has had the "Best Week Ever," with the mediocre-to-poor comics reading scripted lines and trying to sell them as funny like Brutus "The Barber" Beefcake trying to sell a clothesline.

   The point? Consider these facts:

   -- Won $78 today in a poker game that essentially ended up a high-stakes game of Acey Deucey.

   -- Wrote another generally well-received column.

   -- Saw two quality films, both of which left people hanging if they sat through to the end of the credits.

   -- Attended a party and sparked a legitimate beer debate, which is nice considering it in no way involved Bud Light.

   -- [ Insert things not fit for you here. ]

   -- Oh yes, and this just for the hell of it.


   Don't I win hands down? Doesn't the not-funny man with the gap in his front teeth have to talk about me? Doesn't Rachel Harris have to dryly come up with something in between wondering what the hell she's doing on such a train wreck?

   Don't answer that.

   And also, a standing ovation is due for our friend Fez, who has done it again. Wilmer, we all bow to your superpowers, and wish you the best of luck until Sept. 28, 2005.

   And if you think I wouldn't invade a press junket and ask about this, you'd be right because I'd rather be convulsing than attend an entertainment-related press junket.


November 13, 2004 - It Probably Was Their Child
   For Your Holiday Shopping Needs: Beer drinkers out there may come across the Sam Adams Winter Sampler Pack, or whatever it's called, at their local packie in the coming months.

   The beers involved, in order of merit, are:

1. Cranberry Lambic
2. Winter Lager
3. Sam Adams Light
4. Boston Ale
5. Sam Adams
6. Old Fezziwig Ale

   While I'm pretty sure on my ratings, this is also the order I drank the six of them in. As the Guinness guys have astutely pointed out in the past, drinking six beers at the same time is not exactly brilliant.


   • Sometimes, however, it is necessary.


November 12, 2004 - After The Victory
   FuckThe South.com: Several people I know posted about this link today, and given the leanings of many of them, the reaction was to be expected given I live in perhaps the bluest state of them all.

   To which I say ... bravo. It's good to see the by stereotypical election map has actually become the outline many swear by. After all, it's not like the "blue states" needed the other half of the country to get their candidate elected to the presidency, right?

   Today I went to the eye doctor for the second straight Friday. Last week, I wasn't allowed to be seen because I didn't have the proper insurance form ... I'd forgotten I had to request a form, and was given another appointment for today. This morning, when I went to check in, no one asked me for the form which I had.

   Had the incompetent receptionist working today been working last Friday, I could have been seen, then been chided after the fact and told to get my form. I could have saved seven days, and likely had new contact lenses by now.

   This series of events was more bothersome than "my" candidate losing the Presidency would have been.

   So long as intelligent people keep passing around links like the one above, perhaps they should instead spend their time reevaluating their superiority complex.


   • Lance Armstrong, after winning six consecutive Tours de France, had made the logical next step ... he wants to race in Formula One.

"He said he wanted to drive the car himself rather than be a passenger," [Mark] Webber, who has his first test with Williams on Nov. 24 after moving from Jaguar, told the BMW-powered team's Web site on Friday. "I told him I wasn't sure if it was possible but I'd look into it."

   I don't even know how to follow that.

   Though I also don't know why people by music anywhere but here in New England, considering I got two new releases for $20 tonight.

   Should that "Cooch-dorsements" page ever move from my head to the Net, I bet I know what one of them will be.

   And because it doesn't fit with anything else, you should probably also see The Incredibles once you're done with Team America. If only because you can guess the point where the peanut gallery addition of "That's hot ..." would be the funniest.

   I know we have a proposal.


November 11, 2004 - Gentlemen, Start Your Dribbling
   More Late Night TV: Rather than again bore the masses with discussion of what I'm doing when I should be sleeping, I'm just going to point out TBS has a reality show involving rebuilding a mansion.

   I stumbled upon the premiere episode of this show, and tonight watched what had to be one of the final episodes, yet I just keep coming back to the same dealbreaking point.

   Mansion or not, who the hell wants to live in Cincinnati?


   • In trying to grab the Web address for this film, I came across the college basketball preview for this conference, which includes my alma mater.

PREDICTED ORDER OF FINISH: 1. Vermont; 2. Boston University; 3. Northeastern; 4. Maine; 5. Binghamton; 6. Hartford; 7. Albany; 8. New Hampshire; 9. UMBC; 10. Stony Brook

BOSTON UNIVERSITY -- The Terriers have won the AEC regular season title the last two seasons, only to get NIT berths after Vermont captured the conference tournament championship. Despite a loss in the first round of the NIT, BU still had a successful year, finishing 23-6 overall and an impressive 17-1 in league play. The Terriers have posted three straight 20-win seasons and in that time they have gone 43-7 in AEC action. Although this year's squad is a bit thin, it should still be able to contend for the league title behind three returning starters in Rashad Bell, Chaz Carr and Shaun Wynn. Bell, a 6-8 forward, was a First Team All-conference choice in 2002-03, and averaged a solid 11.5 ppg and 6.8 rpg last season. As for Carr and Wynn, they give Boston perhaps the best returning backcourt in the AEC. Carr, was a First Team All- AEC choice last season after leading the Terriers in scoring (13.0 ppg) and the conference in free-throw percentage (.892), while Wynn (8.2 ppg) earned the AEC Defensive Player of the Year Award with a team-best 60 steals. Forwards Kevin Gardner (4.8 rpg) and Etienne Brower will see significantly more playing time this season following the graduation of five players.

   Rather than discuss the movie -- I know I'm a pretty late-comer to it -- I encourage everyone to read the IMDb message board for it, where you can learn that Queen Victoria had nothing to do with the Boer War and that 18-year-olds agree Canada is the best place to live in the entire world.

   It's a logical discussion really, given the film is built around marionettes simulating sex with their genitalia-free bodies.

Take that Hans Blix! How you like that you fucking cocksucker!
Inspect that you butt-fucking mother fucker! Fuck you Hans Blix, you cock fuck!

   And as a note, there's no point in sitting through the end credits ... unless Kim Jong-Il denouncing Alec Baldwin in song does a whole lot for you.


November 10, 2004 - Angst With Poison
   And This Time, We Mean It: Its been one of the most fun games to be played by news-inclined people over the last couple of days, with the morbidity of it offset by the fact he may have been little more than a terrorist.

   Yassir Arafat, thank you for dying just before the real deadline crunch in the Eastern Time Zone ... sort of inconvenient, but really, all for the best.

   It was nice to see the Los Angeles Times move a meaty obituary on the wires ... all 115 column inches of it. In case anyone had a full page they thought would look good with nothing but gray text.

   Kinda like his little head sock, whose name I actually know, come to think of it.


   • For whatever reason you choose to create, I was flipping channels at 2:30 a.m. tonight ... technically that's not on the 10th, but if you're that literal about things, you'll probably have already gotten on my case about either comma usage or my apathetic stance on Yassir Arafat.

   Another Meaningless Arafat Note: When Yassir first died, CNN.com's front graphic featured his name spelled out in a fancy font -- the kind of long, curvy letters used for wedding invitations and by me when I want people to call me wicked girly. Now, it's in block letters.

   Tomorrow, we discuss how much better Baghdad Bob would have made all of this.


   Anyway, FX is airing what I always felt was a rather underrated film -- Baz Luhrmann's Romeo + Juliet from 1996. I have no life and nowhere to be, so I watch the thing to the bitter end.

Romeo + Juliet

   A few observations:

   Baz Luhrmann is insane. When you combine this movie with both Moulin Rouge and the Sunscreen song, we're clearly dealing with someone playing with a whole other deck of cards.

   That can be considered good or bad, but I'm pretty sure all the spinning cameras and use of slow motion gave me a mild case of vertigo.

   • Claire Danes. I'm not really sure what's going on there. First she's hot, then she's not really, then she sort of is again ... please decide what you're trying to do.

   Of course, this could have been by Luhrmann's design, since Juliet wasn't supposed to be a supermodel as much as a 12-year-old who'd be writing angst-filled poetry if Shakespeare lived in the late-20th century. Though any further debate on this is going to range into film theory, which I rank right above poetic analysis and car waxing as topics I enjoy.

   Should you even be in a poetry discussion, just pick some inanimate object and say it's "society." They'll love you. I, however, digress.

   • Mercutio's death. You weren't wondering, but the lines:

"Ask for me to-morrow, and you shall find me a grave man."

and

"They have made worms' meat of me."

   are pretty much what sold me on Shakespeare back in the day.

   All that said ...

   • I knew what was going on, knew the story, and I still had no idea what the hell I was watching.


   Course, it was almost four in the morning. The film did fulfill its intended purpose ... just generally be depressing, but do it with lots of neon.


November 9, 2004 - Bedknobs And Bombshells
   The Shoe: It has been reported plenty elsewhere, but I'd feel wrong if I didn't say something about the shoe.

The Shoe
-- Game not included.

   This is so stupid. Just beyond stupid. Stupider that Latrell Sprewell's new shoes with the spinning rims.

   With all those diamonds in the way, how are you supposed to tighten the laces?!

   Idiots.

   Fanning The Political Flames: Time for a poll. What's stupider -- the above shoe, or the following statement?

Whether you are a Democrat, a Republican or an independent, it is hard not to look at President Bush's re-election victory last week and conclude that he is probably one of the three or four most talented politicians of the last half of a century.
-- From this column on CNN.com

   And the Bush twins ... are they actually hot, or are guys everywhere subconsciously comparing them to the Kerry daughters?

   And why am I asking a question I have no desire to know the answer of?


   • There are several things I know, and have learned, in the past week.

   My knowledge of crappy pop and rock music from recent years has gone down the toilet. There will have to be much studying of insipid radio to correct this.

   Scott Boras is among my least favorite people on the planet, even if he is merely doing his job.

   And one really does have to spend money to make money.

$500 Glory

   One also has to play aggressive and hit opponents hard after the flop, but that's really getting too much into theory and away from the profiteering.

   In the past couple, the wife of a coworker and the relative of another each won $10,000 on scratch tickets. I remember being really excited growing up when I won $20 on a scratch ticket at the Big E, because it meant I could buy beef jerky from the Better Living Center later that evening.

   Ah, childhood in the sticks.


November 8, 2004 - There's A Column In Here
   Fantasy Frenzy: Let me get one thing clear right off the top ... fantasy football doesn't do a whole lot for me. I'm far more enamored with the NFL by picking games and just cheering for my teams, and don't need fake rosters and odd point systems to keep my mind occupied.

   That said, I'm in three fantasy football leagues -- two with some of the gang from BUCB, and the other with Whale City folks.

   Week 9 was the first week I won my games in all three leagues.

   As though I needed a reason to fill space here with a chart, here's a breakdown of the three squads that can remind you just why I am a complete dork.

Name:
Whale City Sprawl
Whale City Sprawl
Foster St. Sprawl
League:
League1 (Vito)
CanAm Football Lg. (Mark)
Fantasy Football 04 (S-T)
W-L (Rank):
5-4 (7th of 14)
4-5 (9th of 12)
3-5-1 (8th of 10)
Top Scorers:
QB Brett Favre
(1,852 yds. - 12 TDs)
----------
RB Edgerrin James
(791 rush yds. - 5 TDs)
----------
RB Corey Dillon
(749 rush yds. - 4 TDs)
QB Peyton Manning
(2,429 yds. - 26 TDs)
----------
RB Thomas Jones
(511 rush yds. - 5 TDs)
----------
LB Keith Brooking
(52 tckl. - 2 INT - 1 fmbl.)
QB Ben Roethlisberger
(first start in Week 9)
----------
TE Antonio Gates
(602 rec. yds. - 8 TDs)
----------
RB Emmitt Smith
(565 rush yds. - 6 TDs)
Playoffs:
Top 8 - Wks. 15-17
Top 4 - Wks. 15 & 16
Top 4 - Wks. 16 & 17

   Almost makes you wish I'd gone 0-3, doesn't it?

Lights, Camera, Red Sox
-- A story on a local filmmaker whose thesis at Columbia film school is a hell of a piece involving the Red Sox. Read it if you like film, or me, or the Red Sox, or ... just read it.

   • On the back of bottles of Rolling Rock, they have painted the follwoing message:

From the glass lined tanks of
Old Latrobe
we tender this premium beer
for your enjoyment, as a
tribute to your good taste.

   Should any of you know the Rolling Rock people, let them know that, while no beer is good once it has lost its chill, I can choke down most for the sake of finishing the bottle.

   I can not say the same for Rolling Rock.

   Also, the next person who tries to convince me that Corona is a passable alcoholic beverage is getting a headshake and an eye-roll. I just won't stand for it anymore.

   Aside: I mean this as no disrespect to the person who brought over Rolling Rock for tonight's surprisingly entertaining football game ... as a cold beer, it's as good as any other yellow beverage with the exception of lemonade.

   Mmm, lemonade.


November 7, 2004 - Speling Counts
   Grammar Cop: In the same vein of my discovery about "lose" equaling "loose" in most minds, America's professional football signs have again taught me where elementary school teachers are failing the youth.


-- Contractions.

   And this looks like a nice kid, too. If only his nation's educational system left him so deficient, he cheers for the Steelers.

   The Night In Waltham: I had no idea Waltham had such a heady following ... I didn't even mention how impressed I was with the city's immense number of public parking lots. It's as though they actually want people to come out there and spend money.

   While I went to none of the places named by anyone here, the Watch City Brewing Company was more than adequate. Moody Street, even if it sucked, was excellent because it gave the name of their stout that I easily could have made myself blind drinking.

   Also, I learned I hate artichoke hearts, but that really feels like more of a LiveJournal revelation.

   Were I to have a current mood ... let's call it "headachy."


   • Many Boston collegians are quite familiar with The Pour House, if only because one can go in there on a Saturday evening and eat a full burger meal for less than $5. It's also the place where half of my less-than-legendary 21st birthday celebration was held, with things moving logically from there to ... a bowling alley in Dorchester.

   The story is much better if the alley is in Dorchester, no matter what the Web site says. Though really, my 21st birthday celebration ending up a half-dozen miles from my dorm with a contingent of Vietnamese kids alone makes for an excellent story.

   Allowing me to gloss over the fact I had to drive, too.


   The Pour House, being what it is, clearly doesn't have a large PR team behind them pulling the strings to get the people to the place. In Boston, they certainly don't need it.

   However, they're apparently trying to reach out.

   Today, my work account received the following message from The Pour House. Undoubtedly having culled me off some CD-ROM full of e-mail addresses, I just thought I'd share just what, pray tell, they're pushing. And I was so planning to do this before playing grammar cop above.

   Entirely unedited ...

Subject: PourHouseBoston.com (Bar & Grill)
Date: Fri, 5 Nov 2004
From: PourHouseBoston.com
To: jcouture at s-t dot com

   Are you looking for something to do on a Weeknight or Weekend. Come to the PourHouse Bar & Grill located at: 907 Boylston St, Boston, MA or visit our website at: http://www.pourhouseboston.com The Pour House Bar & Grill is a no frills establishment. Well, known to Bostonians as an inexpensive watering hole for people who want to get down and have a good time. We specializes in great attitude, great pricing, and great portions. It is the perfect place to hang out with friends in a casual or rambunctious mood and an excellent place for after " the game" dialogue and drinking games. Fall Promotions Tuesday Night Trivia: A team trivia competition held downstairs at 7:00 Sponsored by Sam Adams, weekly winners will win a grab bag of goodies and be able to play for the grand prize of a ski weekend package. We will also be offering pitchers of beer for the first time. Thursday 80's Night: 1/2 Price Mexican (6-10) Fall back to the 80's with 80's music. BCN, Virgin megastores giving away free Milli Vanilli shots, CD's and all sorts of memorabilia. Budweiser will also be joining us. Downstairs starting at 6pm every Thursday Friday Miller Light Night: Make the call for Miller Light Friday nights at the Pourhouse. Come join us for fun games and prizes. Prizes include, mini fridge, Mt. Bike, TV, gift certificates and a MP3 player. The beautiful Miller Lite girls will be joining us every Friday from 9-11 Saturday Coors Light: 1/2 price Burgers (6-10) Coors Lite girls on most Saturdays with the opportunity to win a Mt. Bike and later on a snowboard and lift tickets Sunday Industry Night: A special night for all of our brothers and sisters in the food service industry brought to you by the one and only Adam Kohler. With the Simpsons playing from 8-8:30 industry personnel will receive.....TBA http://www.pourhouseboston.com You a receiving this email because you have previously subscribed for the Pour House Newsletter If you would like to be removed from this email list, please email us at cancelpourhouse@nvpsites.com and provide your email name that you would like to have taken off of the Pour House Newsletter

   It should be noted that they hold a trivia night on Tuesdays that I also could not regularly attend.


November 6, 2004 - Garbage On David Letterman
   Making The Marketing Team Happy: MLS undoubtedly has gotten what they wanted -- Freddy Adu in the Cup final. D.C. beat New England on penalty kicks tonight at RFK Stadium, leaving the Revolution short in the Eastern Conference final for the second straight year.

   Meanwhile, the league gets their budding superstar in Los Angeles at their centerpiece stadium, the Home Depot Center. They must be doing bicycle kicks in the corporate offices!

   This could a mean a national rating of, like, 3.0 on November 14!


   • Maybe it's just shocking to me, but who knew Waltham had such an exciting downtown? Lots of restaurants, a brew pub, a cineplex ... you might mistake it for a place people actually go to hang on a night out, then realize it actually is.

   Plus, you can't even say it's wasted on the kids at Brandeis. Look what they're doing in their spare time!

The Liquid Latex Club, one of Brandeis' most unique clubs, has a large membership spanning every class, major, and social scene on campus. Each spring the club puts on an incredible Body Art show. It's kind of like a fashion show without the clothes...the models are painted in LIQUID LATEX following the designs of many talented artists, and performing the choreography of our great choreographers. This performance is the product of the hard work of the club's Executive Board and many others, including choreographers, designers, models, painters, security etc etc. Membership is open to anyone who displays an active interest in the club by attending meetings, participating in the show... We love to see new faces, bodies, and hear new ideas. Get pumped for the Sixth Annual Liquid Latex Show in 2005!!!

   Now I'm really glad they had a lock on that storage locker.


November 5, 2004 - Analysis
   And Another One Gone: Sadly this is far more severe than the current wrestling cuts spreading fear around the WWE locker room ... this cut is of a life of a 1980s wrestling superstar.

   Damien, we shall miss you. Even though Earthquake ate you on All-American Wrestling back then anyway.


   • So, is it a good thing that I've gone into the office on both my days off so far this week?


November 4, 2004 - Casting Aside The Winches
   TV Time: This evening, FOX swung for the fences by putting legendary so-bad-it's-good All-Star The OC on before its inferior knockoff show, North Shore.

   While I only watched bits and pieces of both hours -- no point in getting hooked on a show again if I don't actually have a TiVo -- I did pick up enough to figure out somebody's pregnant, somebody else isn't getting any and Shannen Doherty is still pretty bitchy all these years later.

   If only everything else was still the same as 14 years ago ... Rob Van Winkle wouldn't be so angry.

   When People Take Stereotypes Too Seriously: If you had told me Charlie would be the one to find this factual evidence proving my mock election chart, let's just say surprise wouldn't have been the first emotion I was overcome with.

   In case the link goes down, the 19 states John Kerry ended up carrying have average IQs that rank 1-16, 18 and 24 nationally, while the 31 that went for Bush fill Nos. 17 (Virginia), 19-20, 22-23 and 25-50.

The IQ numbers were originally attributed to the book "IQ and the Wealth of Nations", though they do not appear in the current edition. The tests and data were administered via the Raven's APT, and the The Test Agency, one of the UK's leading publishers and distributors of psychometric tests. This data has been published in the Economist and the St. Petersburg Times, though this does not mean it should be taken as fact. Though the data does correlate somewhat to IQ of students per state based on SAT/ACT data, though this would be biased for those that had completed a high school education.

   But really, other than that, it should be taken totally at face value.


   • During the last NHL lockout, ESPN2 took to covering the American Hockey League, going so far as to broadcast live from the Springfield Civic Center for a game between the Falcons and the Providence Bruins. As you can probably imagine, this was very exciting for Western Mass., even if the Falcons lost the game in overtime.

   With the NHL again not playing, there's been some talk of how nice it would be for minor league hockey to get back on national TV. However, the general consensus is ESPN2 is much bigger time now than it was in 1994, meaning they couldn't be bothered.

   I agreed with that thought process until this afternoon.

   This afternoon being when ESPN2 decided to air the UROC Pro Nationals from St. George, Utah.

EXXXXXXXXXXXTREME!!!

   UROC, obviously, being extreme rockcrawling.

Rockcrawling! Sounds like something a lizard does on a lazy August afternoon. Rockcrawling is actually the fastest growing motor sport in the world. It is four wheel drive vehicles of an extreme nature going over the most incredible obstacles imaginable. Sixty degree walls and greater, eight foot crevasses, and tremendous side hills are bringing thousands of spectators to enjoy a day with their family. It has everything a motor sports enthusiast would want, the sounds and smells, the pits, the competition and the carnage.
-- From here.

   It almost sounds exciting, doesn't it? Souped-up vehicles and suspensions, trying to drive over giant boulders and such at insane angles. I mean, look at the photos! Cars rolling, flipping over, fans cheering!

   It would be greater, however, if the TV coverage didn't boil down to the following -- cut to car on rock, car tries to drive up rock, car either succeeds or fails comically, repeat.

   But hey ... I'm only one guy. Some might enjoy calls like this.

"The safety strap did its job there ... attached to a car on the other side, it makes sure the rig doesn't go completely off the obstacle and roll into the crowd. That would be bad."

   With the coming of Super Crawl III at Rocky Mountain Raceway, we will be reaching a milestone in rockcrawling history, as a population base of nearly two million greatly ignores this extreme sport to go do whatever it is Utah people do instead of watching cars flip off boulders they shouldn't be on anyway.

   Edit: In digging deeper, it has come to my attention Super Crawl III was from Oct. 14-17, meaning we all missed it.

   Though given I've never seen any other event requiring attending media to sign a liability waiver, perhaps that's for the best.


November 3, 2004 - D.C. Expos Or Die
   A Final Election Summary: I am not exactly beaming with pride that George W. Bush's reelection seems to have been largely motivated by America's belief that gay people marrying is something they should be worrying about.

   However, when the Democratic Party puts their heads together and decides to build a reelection campaign largely around Skeletor and America's least likable human being, they deserve everything they get.

   If you proudly call yourself a "liberal" or are at least of that bent, do not spend the next four years mocking the nation's gooey, red center. Do not continue to ponder the feasibility of forming a new republic combing just the Northeast, Upper Midwest and Pacific coastline -- New England would be thrown out in 18 months, tops. Skip hopping a Ryder truck bound for Montreal unless you truly believe your everyday life will be a living, breathing hell until January of 2009.

   Fix it.

   Unless you truly do believe your life will be a living, breathing hell until January 2009, in which case I'll help you pack. Though really, I'm pretty sure all those people already left when that "carpetbagger" Romney got elected Governor.


   • Now if you'll excuse me, I'm not sure I'm going to Vote Farrell, but I am sure the people of Washington, D.C., just lost me buying an overpriced new logo team hat.

Popular local nicknames include the Senators, Nationals, Grays and Monuments. The idea has also been floated to call the team the Washington Expos for a season, and then let the new owners help pick a name.

"That is not an idea that has been warmed to by the populace in D.C.," Tavares said. "Out of all the ideas I've seen polled, they think that's the worst scenario out there. Their answer is 'You used to be the Expos, now you're Washington's team and you should be named something that's appropriate to Washington."'

   Washington Crackheads it is.


November 2, 2004 - At Sleep, "W" Stands For Win


-- Rudimentary, stereotypical Electoral College analysis.

   • In 2000, I was still just a college student, staying up until 3 a.m. watching results roll in because I love television graphics, the math of the Electoral College and the quest for information.So while plenty of you celebrated this being your first presidential election as a voter, I celebrated something else in 2004.

   My first presidential election as a journalist.

   How does the evening go at an actual journalistic enterprise, on a night when I'm running the sports desk? On a night where I crack out the New Hampshire Primaries hat, complete with Uncle Sam wielding a baseball bat? I wasn't going to live post, but here's a running tally of just how the evening went.

   Enjoy!

   4:05 p.m. - I roll into work. This is notably because both my coworker and I had planned to get in at 3 p.m. -- the managing editor has requested we get the section out about two hours early at 10 p.m. -- but we both decided resting up was a better choice.

   4:35 p.m. - The day's first question is asked regarding when the food gets here. Every election night is catered at the S-T, leading many to just come in for the sandwiches.

   4:45 p.m. - I find my mother's site comment on yesterday's entry.

"wah wah wah, your just mad cause Bushey's gonna loose!!!!"

   Not only am I shocked she posted on the site again, I'm shocked more people don't know that lose only has one 'o' in it.

   5:02 p.m. - The S-T sports department, which is heavily Conservative-leaning, is the site of the day's first flip-flop joke. "Kerry left his ballot blank, he couldn't decide." Chuckles are had.

   5:21 p.m. - There's a big battle going on in SouthCoast over Bristol County sheriff, with incumbent Tom Hodgson (R) facing Leo Pelletier (D). However, the race has caused some consternation, since neither candidate is exactly heartwarming. To put it one way ...

"You have a dick versus a convicted felon. Who do you vote for there?"
-- Nick

   5:30 p.m. - Our Food Editor pulls up an e-mail picture, informing me "Every time you vote Republican, God kills a kitten." Staunch Republican Ed comments, "There's too many kittens anyway."

   5:58 p.m. - One of the stories on our sports cover deals with the ABA's Boston Frenzy, who are coached by Joe "Jellybean" Bryant, the father of Kobe Bryant. I demand any future interviews with him go the Jim Gray route -- ignoring all important questions to ask, "So, did your son do it?"

   This is called "hard-hitting journalism."

   6:09 p.m. - In debating the Sheriff race, I hear Hodgson "doesn't take any shit" from friend Jon Darling, who later leaves to go play poker. The story somehow connects with something involving $300 bracelets that help track people with Alzheimer's, which I really wish I was listening to better.

   6:16 p.m. - The food arrives in the office. There is a legitimate surge to go eat by everyone, plus I make a sign that reads "VOTE FOOD," complete with a checkbox 'V' that I'm far too proud of.

   6:21 p.m. - Fellow BU alumni R. Henry, whom I was on the same news staff with (sort of) in 2000, declares SouthCoast needs ...

"a God-damned whale farm to bring back jobs."

   I find out from him shortly later that, during the last Whale City mayoral election, one of the multiple losing candidates had declared this was needed for the area. The story makes more sense if you understand several of these candidates are currently receiving mental help, and that I'm not exaggerating with "several."

   6:30 p.m. - For the first time, I taste Mountain Dew: Pitch Black. I declare, shortly before realizing the whole bottle at once would make me die, it "tastes like happy." Enough get the reference to make it worthwhile.

   7:01 p.m. - The sports TV is surrendered to election coverage, at my behest, when I look across the office and see states are already being called. The first? Indiana for Bush. Andrea continues to enjoy living in the only state more pre-determined than my own.

   7:14 p.m. - Upon hearing for the first time that "moral values" are what have driven out the vote, and driven it for Bush," Nick comments.

"What's the difference between saying 'I have moral values' and saying
'I am old and white and hate gay people.'?"

   This line would prove quite interesting many hours later.

   7:29 p.m. - NBC7 in Boston, which for some reason is getting to broadcast live from inside a polling place, reports Framingham and the state "may have had a record turnout." Of course, they also may not have. Thank you television news for never disappointing me by saying something intelligent.

   7:30 p.m. - The polls close in Ohio. I officially become excited things are going to start to happen soon.

   7:33 p.m. - Former NYC mayor Rudolph Giuliani gets interviewed on NBC, leading to a discussion among most of us that a McCain-Giuliani or Giuliani-McCain ticket would not only excite us about voting, it would lead to us buying several houses in several states so I could vote for them about 1,000 times.

   7:34 p.m. - Giuliani is then replaced on screen by Ted Kennedy, leading to a bloodcurdling scream from me and a comment about scotch by Ed. We both then agree he looks a lot better than we remember.

   7:38 p.m. - Using the Ted Kennedy - Joe Quimby voice,

"My anti-drug is booze."
-- Nick

   Just for the record, later in the evening all but Ed agreed Kennedy is the most influential Senator of a generation, and in a good way. I also did say the name "Mary Jo Kopechne" at some point.

   7:44 p.m. - Tom Brokaw, whom I will miss as an anchor, says "We are getting to the important part of the evening." We have also just cleared 100 fake Tom Brokaw election calls in the slurring, drunk Tom Brokaw voice in Whale City.

   7:53 p.m. - On discussing why the loser will wait as long as possible to make any concession speech, out Managing Editor cites Jimmy Carter as a bad example.

"Well, when Jimmy made his concession speech at about three in the afternoon, they lost a whole bunch of seats in California."

   8:01 p.m. - About ten races get called as polls close, leading Ed to gasp when Bush goes from 39-3 up to 77-66 down. Also, when the Garden State is called, we roundly announce.

"Bruce Springsteen has won New Jersey."

   8:21 p.m. - In discussing why the colors for the parties have flipped over the years, I opine why the Republicans are red.

"The Republicans went red for all the blood they spill."

   Sadly, Ed doesn't take the bait and lash out.

   8:23 p.m. - Perhaps now taking the bait, Ed announces to no one in particular that, "Attention snipers, John Kerry will be on Copley Square from ..." We very quickly hope he quiets down, though in his defense, he said he'd love to meet the Secret Service.

   8:28 p.m. - I'm officially tired of all the college kids in Copley Square saying, "This is the biggest night of my life. I want to tell my grandkids about tonight." Of course, I already also remember when presidential politics were shiny and new to me.

   8:30 p.m. - This turning Rockefeller Center into "Democracy Plaza," complete with a map on the ice rink and streamers climbing the GE Building tied to the electoral totals, is officially the coolest thing ever.

   8:43 p.m. - Upon seeing George W. has 41 percent of the vote in Massachusetts, even with only 4 percent reporting, there's a race by everyone around me to be the first one to say, "That's a lot of Bush." I weep for the children.

   8:48 p.m. - In interviewing Vanessa Kerry, Tom Brokaw all but screams through her answers and calls her ugly. Normally this would have been one of the most uncomfortable interviews ever, but instead, it's good to see Brokaw is reveling in that he's retiring after tonight. I only hope the night ends with him flipping off the camera.

   8:57 p.m. - The famed JohnKerryIsADoucheBagButI'mVotingForHimAnyway.com gets brought up for the first time.

   8:59 p.m. - Three mock front pages have been printed out for discussion about the main head. The choices?

KERRY WINS
FOUR MORE YEARS
ELEX HED 110 PTS.

   I'm a fan of the last one, but it may be too "inside baseball" for the public at large.

   9:01 p.m. - The Dakotas, Nebraska, Kansas, Oklahoma and Texas all are called to Bush, leading me to first remark:

"Grain has always been heavily Republican."

   This ends up on the above map, which was only about a half-hour away at this point.

   9:13 p.m. - Apparently, 84 percent of Philadelphia voters chose John Kerry, yet the state is still up for grabs. For some reason, this gives me a stomach pain.

   9:34 p.m. - Tim Russert's whiteboard makes a first appearance, and damn if it isn't technologically souped up. I'm psyched again, especially since the sports department may actually meet the ridiculous 10 p.m. deadline.

   9:38 p.m. - Apparently at campaign events in Ohio, John Edwards pulls out a buckeye given to him by a child and says, "I want this buckeye in the White House" to rabid cheers.

   Does this shit actually work?! Do people actually vote for candidates because of this?! WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU, AMERICA!

   9:45 p.m. - Candidate Zero makes his first appearance of the night. Considering I'm already doing it, the man is forever typecast by this.

   I also am pretty sure we're now not hitting the 10 p.m. deadline.

   9:56 p.m. - The sports section is out. I am beyond excited by this, to the point of where there are high-fives and hand shakes. If we'd been given that deadline 50 times, we'd actually hit it twice. More or less every guess I made hit dead on, be it AP screwing up, coaches not calling us, etc.

   Gold.

   10:14 p.m. - The whiteboard leads me to think it won't be Pennsylvania, Ohio or Florida deciding the country's future, but a state far less significant. I love democracy.

   10:28 p.m. - A motion to change the sports TV to the Nuggets-Lakers game is voted down, nearly unanimously.

   10:31 p.m. - Photographer Andy comes over and, upon hearing the difference in New Hampshire is just 147 votes about halfway through, remarks:

"Those retahded people in New Hampshire!
Their brains are frozen because of the cold weather."

   Nick later adds, "We love guns."

   10:33 p.m. - On discussing Florida, it's decided not only should it be blown up and given to Mexico, the only things the state has ever given us, according to Nick, are:

"hurricanes, thunderstorms, old people and Creed."

   10:34 p.m. -
"He's so fat now, he can't even sing anymore!"
-- Andy, on Scott Stapp's performance on "GBA" during World Series Game 4

   10:36 p.m. - The word "chad" is first mentioned on NBC.

   10:40 p.m. - Now able to turn my attention to the Internet, CNN's county maps on the Web fascinate me. Using Firefox, I open up about seven tabs to track all the important states.

   10:50 p.m. - Sinking my head deeper into the data, I slowly realize we really aren't going to settle anything anytime soon. Tim Russert and his whiteboard says no state has changed from 2000, and Nick puts it perfectly.

"So, nothing has changed in eight hours. This is like talking about the importance
of the fourth quarter of the Super Bowl at ten in the morning."

   10:56 p.m. - Right after Kerry takes Pennsylvania as Gore did in 2000, "moderate, renegade Republican" Arlen Specter is shown to be in trouble there. It's good to see a human willing to think outside party lines is some kind of foppish clown in Washington, D.C. Tremendous.

   Expos, get out while you can.

   11:02 p.m. - After California is called three seconds after the polls close, NBC7 shows footage of Carole King singing at Copley, calling her a "pop singer." Ed openly asks if she's singing "It's Too Late."

   11:07 p.m. - I can't contain my curiosity anymore and surf to MichaelMoore.com. Across the top, there's a message to voters in the Buckeye State.

"Michael Moore and Roseanne Barr will be in Cleveland today entertaining
long lines of voters and ensuring that everyone gets a chance to vote."

   Michael Moore and Roseanne Barr. You can't make this stuff up.

   11:10 p.m. - I make the mistake of reading the "Voter Fraud Blog," or whatever it's called. In Texas, a 70-year-old woman on the "vote by mail" voting list isn't allow to vote at the polls. Apparently, logic isn't why she was stopped ... it's because she was "a minority and a Democrat." A first-time voter somewhere else is asked to turn inside-out is "Kerry is my homeboy" T-shirt, even though most with a brain stem understand you can't campaign inside a polling place.

   Maybe Moore is on to something when it comes to hating America.

   11:16 p.m. - As Sheryl Crow is shown singing "A change ... will do you good" in Copley, Nick tries to start a "BO-TOX! (clap, clap)" chant.

   11:30 p.m. - Tom Brokaw hits the home run of the night coming off a break.

"America has decided who they want for their President for
the next four years
... but we can't tell you yet."

   What an ass. I love it.

   11:32 p.m. - New Hampshire and Nevada going one way and everything else the other opens the possibility of pure joy -- a 269-269 tie. I officially decide this is the outcome we all need.

   11:41 p.m. - The beer comes out. And no, I'm serious.

   11:56 p.m. - Partisan lawyer fight! Partisan lawyer fight! Suddenly, I need to go for a walk around the office.

   12:05 p.m. - As someone says we're headed "back to court," I discuss with Nebraska-native Diane that the only good things to come from her state are herself, the College World Series and corn. We later add Omaha Steaks.

   12:07 a.m. - I start saying Ohio as Oh HI-OH! as an homage to Ed McMahon. Officially, I'm getting punchy.

   12:11 a.m. - The most magic words in TV news are finally uttered.

"Yes Tom, I am here with P. Diddy ..."

   Proving he has been in politics long enough to fit in, Puffy takes the news that 17 percent of under-30 voters participated in 2004 -- the exact same number as in 2000 -- and says he and MTV have exceeded their expectations and that more young people have voted.

   12:29 a.m. - After NBC7 reports from the 20th time from across the street on Beacon Hill -- they're peering in the windows like British papparazzi -- I'm pretty sure they project he's changing into his sleepwear and brushing his teeth.

   This however, could just be anger about the continued lack of change in states, making this whole night a waste.

   12:29 a.m. - New Hampshire called ... to Kerry! A change! My motivation surges.

   12:36 a.m. - The determined main head of the newspaper for Wednesday? TOO CLOSE TO CALL We could have been in the bar drinking on the company dime by 7!

   12:41 a.m. - I read a post on LiveJournal that says the following:

"I've been holding onto this grain of hope, this grain of decency, that my homeland doesn't actually suck rocks. I've been holding onto this deep-seated core of belief that inherently we're not all assholes and idiots and bigots and rednecks who don't care about the rest of the world. I've been having, god knows why, some degree of faith in the American people. But if the American people can vote for an administration as despicable as this one not only once, but twice in a row, I don't think I can believe that anymore.

I don't honestly think that I'd do anything as drastic as move to another country and renounce my citizenship. They're all too far away, really.

But I certainly won't identify as an American anymore."

   I boil this down to, "I hate it here, but I refuse to leave." This thought process boggles my mind.

   12:46 a.m. - As Bill Frist is being interviewed, I revisit how close we came to this being an election between Al Gore and Bill Frist, two of the most boring human beings ever to stand upright.

   12:49 a.m. - A Tennessee senator in Boston whose name I missed makes the night's first reference to the Red Sox -- Ohio isn't over, we are in the city where the Sox came back from 0-3 down ... everyone left in the office has their heads go down.

   12:57 a.m. - "Possible news out of Ohio ..." People are going home from Copley.

   1:01 a.m. - One minute after NBC calls Ohio and Alaska for Bush, putting him at 269 of the needed 270, Tim Russert says it simply.

"It's difficult to see how John Kerry can become President of the United States."

   1:07 a.m. - Someone is singing "America The Beautiful" Boston. Ed asks, "Isn't that like 'Taps'?"

   1:10 a.m. - I have to wonder if a northeast Democrat will ever be nominated for the Presidency again ... I mean really, if one wasn't going to win this year, with as many balls as the Democrats felt they had in their court, how can one ever win? Even as close as they came?

   1:13 a.m. - I find this screed written by my brother, and am floored. I had no idea he cared about the election this much.

   1:16 a.m. - We find out it's one of my coworkers birthdays now -- Kenny, the Wire editor, who has been at the paper nearly three decades. We do what any good coworkers would do for a friend -- I spark a singing of 'Happy Birthday,' then we direct him to the nearest strip club.

   1:30 a.m. - I become sure that if Kerry-Edwards was actually Edwards-Kerry, the Democrats win the election. I will not debate this.

   1:40 a.m. - Choosing to sign online, I send out an IM and almost immediate think the signing on and chatting was a bad idea.

   1:50 a.m. - NBC rolls out the bloggers for the first time tonight, including Wonkette, who I think is sort of cute but who I imagine would drive me insane were we ever actually to meet.

   Ed is pretty sure she's not wearing a bra.

   1:57 a.m. - Oregon has apparently banned same-sex marriages, which shocks me only because it's the first thing to violate my stereotype-based electoral map all night.

   2:01 a.m. - With the Democrats refusing to give up in Ohio, I amend my prediction that 'We'll know the know the next president by 2 a.m.' to 'We'll know the next president by next Tuesday.'

   2:07 a.m. - The realization that the city of Cleveland is more or less deciding who my president will be opens a debate about which state has given us more -- Nebraska or Ohio? Proposed items include Devo, Cedar Point, Goodyear Tires and Warren Buffett.

   2:09 a.m. - I am asked "if I want to gloat or something." The signing on and chatting has officially become a bad idea.

   2:30 a.m. - After a half-hour of promises that he's coming, John Edwards heads to Copley Square and says the following:

"We've waited four years for this victory. We can wait one more night."

   The office clears out.


   Upon going home, I stayed up until 5 a.m. -- when ABC News went off the air, I decided it was OK for me to do the same.

   As I lay down, only one network has called the election. ATP International, the Portuguese language network we get in Whale City.

   Ten hours, 3,000 words and we're pretty much in the same place where we were at the beginning. Thank goodness we still vote on Tuesdays for the farmers, still use paper ballots because people fear computers and still do it on just one day because of more crap that mattered 100 years ago.


November 1, 2004 - Last Day Of The Rest ...
   This Cute Goes To Eleven: Generally speaking, guys are not allowed to say things are "cute," but I think I may have found something that is allowed under the International Cuteness Doctrine.

Kitten In The Funnel
-- off College Humor

   I will debate this if needed. I will not, however, draft an "International Cuteness Doctrine" if one does not exist.


   • I think it's a law that on a day before a presidential election, one must talk about said presidential election. So I'm going to venture outside where I belong, and say the following.

   I'm not going to tell you to vote.

   Many people, both that I know and that I don't, have said things to the effect of "this time it's important" in trying to get people out and vote. While I find it a little odd that this is the first time electing the person who is ostensibly the leader of the free world is "important" -- whether I am taking their statements too literally or not depends on the source -- it's hard to argue with pushes to get people involved in what is both their government and their life.

   That said, I'm going to lay it out as succinctly as I can.

If you don't inherently understand, without anyone telling you, that electing the leader of your nation is something important, I don't want you anywhere near a voting booth.

   If someone needs to clue you in on the democratic process being something you should care about, stay in bed on Tuesday. Go get a McGriddle for breakfast, and splurge for the large orange juice. Head to your job, and just keep on trucking with whatever it is you do. On the way home, grab some fresh produce ... make yourself a nice salad. Do it up. Pop in the World Series of Poker reruns, the Desperate Houseviwes on TiVo ... whatever makes you happiest.

   Let the intelligent people keep thinking for you.

   You're clearly not smart enough to be operating a microwave ... never mind getting as much say as I do.

   Sadly, none of the people who need this advice will ever read it, since I'd imagine my site takes way too long to load on AOL dialup.

   Also sadly, "Vote or Die!" never reached my parents, which means I never got to have the delightful conversation with Mom about who made it and why he isn't a complete idiot.


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2001: [12] - [11] - [10] - [09] - [08] - [07] - [06] - [05]