Sociology 111

My sociology class began discussing race and ethnicity today, a subject which I should really pay attention to considering the fact that I am one of the eight whitest men on planet earth (I'm listening to Alphaville right now for christsake.)

After our professor gave us the definitions of both racism (belief that some racial groups are superior, while others are inferior) and prejudice (negative attitudes based on generalizations of a group.) She then asked if anyone had an example of how they are different.

Of course, my hand rose.

"Well," I said, "if I was hiring someone for my company and thought to myself 'I can't hire this guy, he's black', I'd be a racist. But, if I thought 'This black guy will be perfect for the job, I've just got to make sure we've got plenty of watermelon and chicken around the office', I'd be prejudiced."

Professor: (extended silence) "uh....um....okay..." (more silence) "Anyone else?"

I better keep studying.

Go Illini!



Eight Elite Eight Thoughts

1) Considering the fact that The Big Ten put three teams into the Elite Eight on what every single talking head pundit said was a down year for the confrence, how many teams would a good year have produced?

2) Is there any doubt that Julius Hodge will somehow return to N.C.State for his ninth and final year?

3) Do you trust anyone who drives a station wagon? I don't.

4) If I 've said it once, I've said it a thousand times...the best part of being Catholic? Lenten Friday Night Fish Frys & Beer Busts.

5) Am I the only one excited about the return of Crazy Mariah Carey?

6)Fact: The youngest Winslow girl from "Family Matters" did a soft core porn.

7) What is with the rediculous amount of college basketball players wearing giant undershits? Are they paying some sort of homage to the ghost of Patrick Ewing?

8) Illini v. Zona tomorow afternoon...I'm staying in tonight to collect some Karma. Crunch time, baby. Crunch time.




She Blinded Me With Science (and rum)

March 23, 5:43 pm. -In the interest of science and for the betterment of all humanity (and since I am currently positively unemployed) I am embarking on a voyage. For years, I and many peoples like myself, have been indulging in the art of drinking. While I make no excuses (as we reap what we sow) the great pastime of imbibing normally leaves me feeling, once morning comes, as if I have contracted SARS.

But some time ago, something changed. The ever growing market for hangover relief (Alka Seltzer's Morning After, Bloody Marys, etc.) hit the proverbial scientific jackpot and released the self proclaimed miracle drug: Chaser (motto - "Freedom From Hangovers.")

Tonight, I will be getting drunk. While drinking, I will be taking the Chaser pills as prescribed (two tablets with the first drink, two more tablets with every five drinks or every two hours.)

As we all know there are many important facets to the art of drinking. I have the body type of an average man (5'10", 175 lbs) and a good (but not great) tolerance for alcohol. One key factor for me, is that if I do not eat before I start drinking...Bad things happen (I'll simply leave it at that.) So, I made sure I ate properly today:

Breakfast - 2 cups of coffee
Lunch - The Big Salad
Dinner - 1 steak, 1 potato, 3 eggs

The experiment will begin precisely at 7:00 pm, when I will begin drinking Al Fritz's (yes, I named a drink after myself...Captain Morgan and Sprite, neat...And yes, I admit that it is extremely narcissistic of me to name my favorite drink after myself. So, shut up) and popping Chasers until I pass out. I will wake up precisely at 7:00 am (with or without a hangover) and record my findings.

Off to the 7-11 for the essential supplies.

6:05 pm - Back from the 7-11. I was neither stabbed nor propositioned with man sex. So far, everything's coming up roses.In my possession, I have:

1 - 5th of Rum
1 - 2 Liter of Sprite
1 and 1/2 - Packs of Camel Lights
4 - Jimmy Dean Sausage Biscuits (I get hungry when I've been drinking)
1 - Loaded up iPod (for a late night, private, super rock out)

Now, it is time to get my nightly "Simpsons" fix and then it's time to start the scientific process.

7:00 pm - Two Chaser tablets washed down with the first drink of my Al Fritz.

Now, it will be imperative that I make every drink the same, so here is the official recipe for an Al Fritz:

1 part Jerk
2 parts Loser
Splash of Desperation

Psyche...Actually, it's (in a cocktail glass):

3 shots Captain Morgan
Fill with Sprite and stir.
They go down like candy.
Let's hope this mission goes well (I feel like a space monkey)

7:03 pm - Should I be wearing a diaper?

7:06 - Right now, "Law & Order" is on three different channels simultaneously. This is going to be a long night.

7:07 - Eureka! Live from Roger Dean Stadium in Jupiter, FL; it's the Cardinals vs Mets! Spring training baseball, everybody!

7:08 - Al Hrabosky just forgot that it takes three (three) outs to end an inning. It's official...Baseball is back!

7:11 - Mark Grudezelanickackenickek with a base hit. No, I'm not drunk yet...I really do think that's how you spell his name.

7:22 - I've reached my first obstacle of the evening...The house is out of toilet paper.

7:28 - Napkins to the rescue!

7:31 - Drink number two.

7:34 - Both roommates have now been informed of tonight's science experiment. Roomate Andy's response: "This is the coolest thing you've done in awhile."

Roomate Matt's: "Good luck with all that."

7:37 - If you thought Jim Edmonds was lazy during the regular season, you should see him in spring training. His laziness is really something to behold.

7:45 - Our friend Erin stops by to trade us four boxes of Girl Scout cookies for a tape of last week's "O.C." episode. I'm glad to see the barter system is making a comeback.

7:53 - Say what you want to about So Taguchi...I can gar-run-tee you that he has never used steroids.

8:09 - Drink number three. Chasers numbers three and four (note- since there are three shots in each of my drinks, I will need to take two pills after every two drinks for them to, hopefully, work effectively.)

8:18 - Man, I can't wait to see how the "Andres Galaragas Era" ends in New York. So that's what the Mets were missing, huh? A 57 year old first-baseman?

8:37 - Lets watch some "Zoolander!"

8:52 - This whole Pat O'Brien rehab-stint/sexscapade is hands-down the funniest thing to come about in months.

9:01 - Drink number four. That's what I'm TALKING ABOUT!

9:22 - Have I ever mentioned before how much I hate Scott Joplin? Rag-time music is the absolute worst. Absolutely worthless. And yes, I'm drunk.

9:35 - Drink number five's first sip washes down chaser pills five and six. Amazingly, I have gone this long without having a cigarette. That's about to change, though.

9:43 - Mmmm...that was a good Camel Light (and, "I can derelicte my own balls.")

9:54 - Wait a second..am I taking Chasers? Or crazy pills?

10:11 - I seem to have developed one whale of a headache. I decide to take two excederin to reduce said headache. Let's hope this variable does not interfere with our findings (you know, for science's sake.)

10:19 - Drink number six. I can no longer see anything even remotely good coming out of this experiment.

10:34 - I'm most definitely intoxicated now...let's see where a rock out takes us. Which leads me to pose the following question: "When will I finally get sick of the Modest Mouse rock out?"

10:45 - I BACKED MY CAR INTO A COP CAR THE OTHER DAY! (answer: not anytime soon.)

10:52 - Drink number seven, chasers number seven and eight. I have officially reached the prescribed amount of Chasers one should consume in a single night. In other news, I just mixed the strongest Al Fritz yet.

11:05 - Just a reminder...Dee-runk guy + ebay account = disaster.

11:15 - My roommate Matt has a theory which I am now ready to endorse. It will someday be made public that Barry Bonds was on steroids. Once that is revealed, Matt endorses having Barry's MVP trophies (from the steroid tinted seasons only) melted down into a hot, liquid, golden soup. Barry's punishment for being such a cheating asshole while he was playing? He must eat his golden MVP soup. After watching Barry's latest little press-conference, I agree. Someday, Barry, if I have anything to do with it, you will eat your trophies.

11:19 - So I says to Mable, I says...drink number eight...and I am now strug-eee-ling.

11:39 - That's it...I'm cocked! Time to brush the fake teeth and pass out. Hopefully, all is well come sun up.

March 24, 7:00 am. - Am I hungover? No. But here's the thing...once I lied down last night, I could not fall asleep. I ended up getting about three hours of sleep total.

So, I do have a headache and I do feel like shit...but, it's from lack of sleep, not from all the drinking. Perhaps if I took some Tylenol PM with the last batch of Chasers things would work out.

Uh, oh...I smell another experiment...you know, for the science's sake.



The Art of the Google

No steroids here. Just two great mustaches and one man with the ability to consume 57 beers in one sitting.

Out of pure boredom, I decided to check out some of the searches which have led internet surfers to my little piece of the information super highway.
Here are what some sick fucks have googled (in bold) and my quick analysis of their searches:

frank viola penis - Who in the world is interested in Frank Viola's crank? Personally, I could never take my eyes of that man's glorious moustache in order to check out his basket.

"tommy shaw" and "south Bend" - Someone else shares my love of Styx and Notre Dame.

Average temputures in different countries - I have no idea how that search could possibly lead you to here.

empty mizzou arena - Ha! Mizzou sucks!

actor "Jody Price" - To clear things up, Jody Price is not a real person. He was Vincent Price's fictional grandson on an episode of "The Simpsons" (He ran the deceased Vincent's Easter Egg Coloring business.)

hogan and jayson spank - What in the world?

wade boggs once drank 60 beers - Which is almost true. On a cross country flight back in the mid-80's, Wade Boggs consumed 57 cans of beer...however that is not how his pants ended up at Cheer's.

What have we learned?

First and foremost, Mizzou sucks. Secondly, Googling can lead people all over the place, so be careful the next time you're searching the internet.

Just typing "purple monkey dishwasher" into that little bar can lead you to some very, very dark places.



Tales From The Rear

To celebrate my buddies Josh, Matt, and the rest of the crew who are currently on their way home from the cradle of civilization, and in order to mark the two year anniversary of our invasion into said cradle, I have decided to do a little war reminiscing.

I recently found out that my mother has kept copies of all the e-mails that I sent her during my time in the conflict, and hoping that I may in some way have sounded wise and whimsical in my time away at war, I decided to read through the letters.

Alas, all I really found out is that I'm a jerk.

Now, a lot of soldiers who wrote to their families during the civil war had quite a way with words. For example, John W. Dean of the Union's Company I, 19th Regiment wrote:

"Dear Father and Mother, I take my pen in hand to write you a few lines to let you know how I am getting along. I am well and harty as ever and hope when these few lines arrive they will find you as well..."

Touching, really. Now here is my first letter to my parents once I was aboard the USS Ashland and sailing across the Atlantic Ocean:

"Hey Guys-
This sucks. Well, now that I've made that clear, whats new with you guys? Nothing new with me - that's for damn sure. How could something be new when I can't watch TV, talk on the phone, or even walk for more than a few hundred yards without falling into the stupid ocean. This is ridiculous. Why don't they just fly us over there? Do you have any clue how much of the taxpayers money we're wasting right now? I don't even want to think about it. Ludicrous!

Anyway, I live in a room the size of my bedroom with eleven other guys. We eat, workout, occasionally play cards, and sleep. That's all we do. That's all we possibly can do. This sucks. I don't care how "proud" someone is of me - everyone can go to hell as far as I'm concerned. I can't wait to get off this god forsaken ship.

Anyway...I miss you all and can't wait to hear from you.


P.S. Send me some crack so I can fail a drug test and get off this damn boat."

In hindsight, that's not quite as poignant a tone as I was hoping to strike.

Later that month, after President Bush gave a speech, I had the following to say about the Commander in Chief:

"I couldn't really care less what Bush says (Unless it sends me back home.) The guy's an idiot."

A stirring rally cry.

Later that April, my mom found it pressing to e-mail the results of American Idol, in order to tell me that some Marine dude was on the show. My reply:

"I hope they kick that damn marine off the show and send him out here to replace me. That guy is not exactly pulling his own weight in the whole war effort.

I'm sweating my ass off here in Kuwait while he's back in L.A. living like a rock star.

To hell with him."

For some reason, I don't think The History Channel will ever include my correspondences in any of their specials.

Anyhoo...Get home safely guys.

Happy St. Paddys weekend everybody!



Not Exactly A Great Spring Break

Last Friday, I left school knowing that I would not have classes for nine days. I did a little bit of drinking down in the StL that night and woke up Saturday morning to drive to Peoria. It was my friends Brad's birthday party, appropriately themed "Prom 1983." It was a blast, as everyone was dressed up in their worst suits, tackiest dresses, and most obscure concert t-shirts.

Unfortunately, that same Saturday night my good friend Chris's little sister, Kelli, passed away.

So, the rest of my "spring break" entailed me sitting around at my parent's house, occasionally meeting up with friends, going to visitations, the funeral, etc.

There were quite a few moments during the visitation where it got quite dusty inside of St. Philomena's church. Pictures of Kelli in our grade school alma-mater's soccer uniform. Pictures of their family down at The Edgewater in Panama City Beach during our High School Spring Breaks. Pics of everyone out at Peoria's Wedgewood Swim Club. Then, her, her sister Betsy, and Chris at Busch Stadium, circa 1987.

Anyone who has ever looked at this site knows that I hold a ridiculous amount of importance concerning sports in my life. So when I saw the pink Saint Louis Cardinals hat that lied with her in her casket during her visitation...well that was just the end of it.

Chris (whom I've been friends with since we were the age zero) was an unbelievable stud throughout the entire ordeal. He batted leadoff in the visitation line (perhaps one of the hardest thing anyone ever has to do...ever) and finished off a great speech at her funeral. After talking about how he taught her that there is only one real baseball team in America (the Cardinals) he told an awesome anecdote about how Kelli affected so many people so greatly that she was invited to a wedding of a Walgreen's employee...just because she alway made his day when she shopped there.

What happened sucks. And it's a damn shame.

But, although we lost her grace, with Kelli's passing...the winds may blow a little sweeter across P-Town.

Take care.



"If It Wasn't For My Horse, I Never Would Have Spent That Year In College"

In case you've been sleeping, here's a rundown of the last week in three quick minutes.

1. On Sunday, I was walking around in shorts and a t-shirt. Yesterday, it snowed. Today, I walked to buy a paper wearing shorts and no top. Now, I'm not saying I hate global warming...in fact, I think I enjoy it...but we could use a little stability here. To quote Lewis Black commenting on the ozone layer: "We have men. We have rockets. We have saran wrap. Fix it."

2. Also on Sunday, it became official. Black people are better actors than white people. There. I said it.

3. I bought an iPod. It's been in my possesion for only 72 hours and I have no idea how I ever lived without one. It has been an absolute godsend. Time, literaly, flies by now.

4. I quit my side job at the deli. I will now be occupying my Tuesdays and Thursdays at Scott Air Force Base, helping military members as they get out of the military (something I am experienced in.)

5. Speaking of quitting, did you know that governments could just up and quit? The good people in Lebanon knew that they could. And they did. Lazy Mediterranean Sea swimming fucks.

6. I found myself sitting in Starbucks, wearing jeans I bought at the Gap and a shirt I bought at Express, listening to my iPod, and text messaging a friend on my cell phone. That is when I realized that I have become everything which I ever hated in the world. And I like it.

Here are the songs which played on my iPod (it's on shuffle) while I've been writing:
Bush - Machinehead
Pete Yorn - On Your Side
Ryan Adams - She's Lost Control
Modest Mouse - One Chance
Badly Drawn Boy - All Possibilities
Howie Day - Everything Else

God, I love this thing.

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"I'll be dead in the cold, cold ground before I recognize the state of Missouri."