To Get Your Week Started Off Right
Sorry, that was just sittin' on the top of my head, waiting to bust out.
[this guy should draw some good google searches, no?]
Like Hal Sparks Does The 80's, I Love Chris Carpenter
A Sunday Without Regret is a Wasted Saturday Night
Oh, Tyler Fucking Johnson, what a hangover.
In other, better, news -- I have power again.
So suck it long and suck it hard Ameren. Ya'll bitches can't hold me down. (and thanks for all your hard work.)
And don't forget:
Lounge, Mozzy. Lounge.
Without Power: Day Two
When I drove home Thursday morning, the mayor of Maplewood said on the radio that their ‘hood was going to be without power for anywhere from three to six days. Maplewood is right next to my little slice of St Louis in Dogtown. Happy, this news did not make me.
The temputure was already around 90 degrees and it was only 9 in the morning. No AC, no fans, and I was somehow supposed to get a night’s sleep. I did what you probably thought I would do: Drank a bunch of fucking beer (I’m so predictable.)
Sometime around 3 in the afternoon, drunk, and with the heat index hovering around 120, I realized that so much sweat had dropped onto the magazine I was reading that by the time it dried, it would be impossible to read. And that’s when I started thinking about Kuwait.
Three and a half years ago, when I was in the Marines -- in another life, essentially -- I lived in a tent in northern Kuwait, getting by on a diet of coffee, camel lights, and The Strokes. Food? Well, if you put enough HP sauce on anything, I’ll eat it. But MRE’s? No thanks (unless it’s the cheese ravioli. That was fantastic.)
I worked (and by work I mean played PS2) in a metal box at night and attempted to sleep during the day in a big ass tent. We had a fan in the tent, but when it is 120 degrees out, fans only do so much. People would come in and out of the tent in a manner of ways: Loudly. Quietly. Laughing. Screaming. It didn’t matter how they’d come in, they’d wake me one way or another.
I had to learn how to sleep while flies crawled all over my back, arms, and legs, because it really wasn’t worth the effort to shoo them off. They’d be right back anyway.
Needless to say, sleeping sucked.
And out of everything; the gas masks, the air raids which always seemed to happen at the most inopportune times, the constant dragging around of my rifle, the assholes which make up 80% of the Corps; sleep was my biggest issue. If I was lucky enough to have some sleeping pills, it normally wasn’t too bad. I’d simply lie on my cot and count the drips of sweat which would soak through the cot and splash on the plywood floor beneath me. Before I knew it, I’d be dreaming. If our mail happened to be cut off at the time, and I hadn’t received any new pills in awhile, sleeping was much harder.
But I got by.
When I came back to the states in the summer of ’03, people would ask about being over there and what it was like. It was (and continues to be) essentially impossible to describe by a functioning illiterate such as myself, so I normally just said “it sucked.” The general response would normally be some sort of variation of “well, you’re a Marine. You’re tough.”
Wrong. I’m not tough. I’m a stubborn fucking jerkass who really doesn’t give a fuck and has an amazing ability to project himself into other, normally more pleasant, places.
But tough, I am not.
That’s why I got out of the Marines. I never again wanted to have to try to sleep in broad daylight and 120 degree temputure. Sleep is important to me, and that simply would not fly. Honestly, I didn’t think I ever would have to again. But then the Great Storm of 2006 blew through St Louis. And then, there I was, lying on my bed, in 120 degree heat, in broad daylight, projecting myself back to Kuwait, for whatever dumb, drunken reason.
I thought of a scene from HBO’s old Band of Brothers. It was towards the end of WWII, and the boy’s from Easy Company were patrolling through a forest in the Bavarian woods. One of the guys asks his Sergeant if it reminds him of earlier in the war when they were fighting for their lives in a forest outside of Bastogne.
The Sarge’s response was “Yeah, now that you mention it... Except, of course, there's no snow, we got warm grub in our bellies, and the trees aren't fucking exploding from Kraut artillery, but yeah...Frank… other than that, it's a lot like Bastogne.”
And as I continued thinking about how similar my futile attempt to sleep was to sleeping in the desert of Kuwait, that’s when my own personal Tyler Durden and I had a little discussion. “Yeah, now that you mention it… Except of course, you got to take a shower today, you’ve got a bunch of beers in your belly, you’ll get to kiss your girlfriend goodnight, and you don’t have to sleep with a gas mask tied to your bed in case a frog lands in your back yard, but yeah… Al… other than that, it’s a lot like Kuwait.”
Three more days without power? I may very well be clinically insane by Sunday.
Hey, I never said I was tough.
[have a great, air-conditioned weekend mi amigos. You fucking bastards.]
Labels: Tales From The Rear
Getting Olde Timey
I have tried countless times to have the motto changed to : "Welcome to St Louis... If you don't like the weather, go fuck yourself" but it just will not stink.
The weather pattern last night changed (literally) in a blink of an eye from "brutally hot and sunny" to "Armageddon." And it fucking rocked.
The apartment lost power around 7 and The Lady Friend and I sat through World War VII (or whatever the hell number the hippies say we're up to now) until about 8. After the lightning subdued a little, we decided to escape the stuffy humidity of our apartment and take a walk through the ravaged streets of Dogtown.
Around our 'hood there were cars smashed up by tree limbs everywhere. Whole trees had been knocked over. Purportedly a roof had blown off of someone's house and landed on a car. It was kind of awesome, mainly because my car was fine and my roof was still intact.
(Although, if my car was totaled, I would have no problem accepting that insurance check. Stupid insurance. It's like gambling, except there is no chance you'll ever win. Even if you do get the money, it means something bad had to happen first.)
We went back to the apartment and threw some steak and veggies on the grill and listened to the ballgame on the radio. Later, we ate dinner by candlelight. And if it wasn't for the lack of a fan, I can honestly say that I did not miss any of our "modern" conveniences.
Computer didn't work? Whoop-e-dee shit, I sit in front of one for 8 hours at work. No TV? TV sucks now anyway. Electric lights? We had candles and in my opinion, candles (much like Jesus is to the Doobie Brothers) are alright with me.
Basically, what I am trying to get at is that I don't need your modern conformist traps, America. I don’t need your moderninity. I can live straight-up 1919 style and get by just fine, thank you very much.
(Note - that last paragraph is a complete lie. I actually had like 27 different text conversations going on my cell and I ended up pulling some of my own hair out and crying because I couldn't see real-time updates of my fantasy team last night. I need moderninity. I need it bad. Also, I’m pretty sure they had electricity in 1919.)
What I am willing to say (honestly) is that I am glad that I work nights, otherwise I would have drank every beer in my refrigerator last night in an effort to prevent them from becoming "skunky" and I would have one whale of a hangover in the morning. So I'm glad that's working out for me.
(Note-that was I lie too. Hangover, shmangover, I would kill an Eskimo hooker for a beer right now.)
(Do Eskimos have hookers? Discuss.)
Update (5:42 am) - And now I get an e-mail saying my company's other 7,000 employees get the day off today becasue there's "no power?" And yet I sit here at my generator-powered computer all fucking night? Balderdash!
I'm drinking me some day pints in the summer sizzle today and playing some hookey tomorrow night. Who's with me, St Louis? I'm not letting those beers get skanky.
Not on my watch!
(Wait... I'm not wearing a watch. Who the... Where am I?)
Games and Spam
Mozzy, if you're reading this (and you are) I officially nominate you (yes, you) as the Chairman of The Theodore Donald 'Donny' Kerabatsos Memorial Over The Line League (Dogtown Chapter).
You set up the tourney and I'll be there with beers on.
It's a simple game. Here's the basics:
"Over-The-Line was invented in the sands of San Diego years ago. It is named after its objective (to hit a heavy, foamy orange ball "over the line" in the sand 55 feet away from home plate). It is played with three players on each team on a court shaped like a pencil -- a triangle with home plate set atop a long narrow rectangle of fair territory. Teammates "pitch" to the batter from their knees beside them like a soft-toss drill. Batters must hit it over the line and within the two sides of the rectangle foul lines. If they do this without the ball being caught by one of their opponents, it's a base hit. Hit it fair and over all three fielders and it's a home run. There are no bases to run to after the ball is struck, as ghost runners bear the leg work so players can stay cool and not worry about spilling their cocktails, which are never far from hand ... especially in the hours between each game spent boozing at the tents surrounding the entire field of play."
It's on bitches. I'm going to mash.
I may be alone in this one, but I love spam. Yeah it's annoying and can cause "viruses" (although it really only works if you have an IQ below 7 and actually fall for it) but quite often it is ricockulous and, well, hilarious.
Even better, when an e-mail sneaks past G-Mail's handy spam blocker and finds its way into my inbox and I'm bored. That's right about the time I like to hit the reply button. Case in point (and please don't feel obliged to read the first message, for brevity's sake, it's simply a standard spam e-mail.):
On 7/18/06, National Lottery Board <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote:
FROM THE DESK OF THE PROMOTIONS MANAGER,EUROPEAN UNION INTERNATIONAL PROMOTIONS AWARD DEPARTMENT.
P O Box 1010, L70 1NL Liverpool, UNITED KINGDOM (Customer Services)
Batch: R3/A312-59Winning No:701/RMD123
Attn: We happily announce to you the draw of the Bono Lottery International Program held on the 15th of July, 2006. Your name "email address" was attached to ticket number; 12324277 serial number 6663817262 This batch draws the lucky numbers as follows 2-9-22-23-24-30 bonus number 5, which consequently won the lottery in the second category. You hereby have been approved lump sum pay of £1,800,000.00 (ONE MILLION EIGHT HUNDRED THOUSAND POUNDS)
file Ref: FER/8309/1209/26 from the total cash prize of 18,000,000.00 shared amongst ten lucky winners based on their category. All participants "email address" were selected through a computer balloting system drawn from Nine hundred thousand names from Canada, Australia, United States, Asia, Europe, Middle East, Africa and Oceanic as part of our international promotions program which is conducted annually.This Lottery was promoted and sponsored by some multinational companies as including Bill Gates, and some other EU governmental personalities part of their social responsibility to the citizens in the communities where they have operational base.
To process your claims you are hereby advice to contact the The promotions Manager with this information:
MR. KENNETH COLEMAN,
EUROPEAN UNION INTERNATIONAL
Needless to say, I was super excited!
On 7/18/06 Alxfritz@gmail.com wrote:
On 7/18/06, National Lottery Board <email@example.com> wrote:
Send your details as soon as possible and get your winnings sent to you.
Man, I'm really happy I won this European lottery I've never heard of! What are the odds?! I better send them my info. Oh, how I want that money!
On 7/18/06 Alxfritz@gmail.com wrote:
Mail the check to:
Go to hell
I wonder if they'll actually respond?
[three minutes later]:On 7/18/06, National Lottery Board <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote:
this is how you people mis opportunities.......
On 7/18/06 Alxfritz@gmail.com wrote:
That's also how one misspells the word "miss"... If you're going to try scamming people, at least be professional about it (ie. capitalization, punctuation, spelling, etc.)
Also, just to make this crystal clear, you are pathetic.
See you in hell.
I still haven't heard back from them, but as soon as I get that money, it's a round of drinks on this guy. (note - my thumbs are pointing back towards my chest.)
And not this guy's:
What a bag of d.
A New Post!
Navin R. Johnson: "The new Daily Redbird posts here! The new Daily Redbirds post!"
Harry Hartounian: "Boy, I wish I could get that excited about nothing."
Navin R. Johnson: "Nothing? Are you kidding? Millions of people look at this site everyday! This is the kind of spontaneous publicity - your name on the internet - that makes people. I'm on the internet! Things are going to start happening to me now."
[have a great weekend, america. you random son of a bitch]
B) Sitting in traffic.
C) A scratched up DVD.
D) Watching Jason Isringhausen pitch in the 9th inning of a close ballgame.
E) Getting a bad ass apartment that you're absolutely fucking crazy about and then finding out that a couch can't fit through the doorway.
That's one lonely coleman camping chair, right there.
Any advice out there for me? My living room is emptier than Bill Self's soul.
(Just kidding. Bill Self has no soul.)
Fritz, That's Too!
And I gotta tell you, I have no idea why a Gentlemen's Club would be named "Fritz That's Too." Odd to very odd wordage choice.
It's got to be the hottest of hot spots in Anaheim though, right?
The FYC's NL Central Mid-Season Showband & Review
First off, I'd like to thank Phil Garner for not putting Scott Rolen in to play 3rd base in the 9th inning of the All-Star game. Scott Ballgame is in there and he gets the groundball that Miggy C. missed 9 out of 10 time. I guarantee it.
Way to cost the NL home field advantage come October, Capt. Moustache. God, I hate the Astros.
Now, on to The FYC's NL Central Mid-Season Showband & Review:
For the past three years, I have been defending the merits of the National League. Sure the America League is more exciting to watch, but it’s a different style of ball. The AL is like the hottest of rap tracks (I’m thinking maybe Dre/Pac with “California Love”) – it’s full of hard hitting beats and machine-gun lyrics and is instant gratification personified (yes, I know that’s not really the correct usage for personification. Get over it.) On the other hand, the NL is like a great jam by the Allman Brothers, something with lot’s of nooks and crannies which can be enjoyed for years to come and in many different ways (read: on drugs.)
However, after June’s inter-league debacle, I realized I was wrong. If I were to compare the two leagues to musical acts now, I would say the AL is Led Zeppelin circa 1970 (un-fucking-beatable) and the NL is Rob Pilatus from Milli Vanilli (not only bad, but also dead.)
Bottom line: The National League is fucking horrible.
On to the NL Central then! (Oh, and if you need, take a look back to see what I said about the Cent before the season started, but I can't imagine why you would care.)
St Louis Cardinals (Actual record: 48-39; Preseason Projected Record: 96-66)
The Cardinals went 3-13 between June 20th and July 6th. And they are still ahead of the rest of their division by at least four games. That is how bad the NL is.
Between their horrendous starting pitching, craptacular bullpen, Jim Edmonds aging 27 years during the off-season, and an apparent robot of some sort (Juan Encarnacion) starting in right field, it is amazing that the Cardinals were able to muster together 48 wins before the All Star break.
Of course, Amazing is also the middle name of Albert Pujols, so that kind of makes sense (not really. His middle name is actually Albert!) Despite missing over two weeks of action, Pujols has still cranked out 29 home runs and driven in 76 runs. Just off the top of my head, I can think of at least ten wins this season which he is solely responsible for. Do not be surprised by any more heroics Pujols pulls off. At this point, “El Hombre” could find the cure for cancer in between innings and I wouldn’t be shocked.
The Cardinals, while not a great team, should continue to keep chugging along and will probably win the Central by virtual default. What happens after that, I’m really not sure… I doubt it will be pretty, though. If the Cards win a World Series the way they are comprised right now, I will eat my hat.
Biggest First Half Surprise: Scott Rolen’s .331 Batting Average. Sure, he’s about 15 pounds lighter (cough… steroids… cough) but Scotty Ballgame is back on track.
Biggest First Half Bust: Mark Mulder’s 6.09 Earned Run Average. Mulder has been about as effective as random hobo being thrown out on the mound, and a heck of a lot more expensive.
Cincinnati Reds (Actual Record: 45-44; PPR: 76-86)
In the Preseason preview, I wrote: “this team is going to score a lot of runs… However, they are also going to give up a lot of runs.” I was right on the first part of that (as was every other person) and completely and totally wrong on the second part (again, so was everyone else.)
Aaron Harang and Bronson Arroyo have combined for 18 wins, 318 K’s, and an ERA in the mid 3.00’s. I did not see that coming. Of course, Arroyo’s transformation into an ace is probably a good example of the quality of play in the NL, but let’s let the little crooner have his moment in the sun, no?
Biggest First Half Surprise: Brandon Phillips. Where the hell did he come from?
Biggest First Half Bust: Esteban Yan’s continued ability to be a Major Leaguer. Who keeps signing him and why?
Milwaukee Brewers (AR: 44-46; PPR: 87-75)
All you need to know about the Brewers in three quick bullet points:
- Carlos Lee is flat out sick (.290/26/73)
- Chris Capuano gets my vote for the best starter in the NL. (10 Ws/112 Ks/3.21 ERA)
- Derrick Turnbow is not an attractive man. Heck of a closer, though. (23 Svs)
Biggest First Half Surprise: Bill Hall’s 17 home runs (cough…HgH… cough)
Biggest First Half Bust: Prince Fielder failing to win Nathan’s hot dog eating contest.
Houston Astros (AR: 43-46, PPR:86-76)
I would love to count the Astros out of the postseason race right now, but it seems like every year they have some sort of remarkable second half turnaround and make a push to play some cold baseball in October (is there anything better than going to a baseball game when it’s 45 degrees out late in October? No… No there is not. Another reason to hate domes.)
If the ‘Stros want to get back on track, they are going to have to figure out just who in the hell is going to close their games out, because Brad Lidge is less then effective this year. In fact, he kind of stinks. Yep… Stinky.
And Houston can be thankful that they have Lance Berkman (.317/24/79) in the lineup because with Morgan Ensberg having a good case of the cold bat, the ‘Stros lineup is less than intimidating. How they have 43 wins right now is beyond me. Phil Garner’s mustache must really be motivating these boys to play their asses off.
As always, I’m sure Houston will find a way to make it interesting down the stretch. Also, there will still be a god damn hill in the outfield.
Biggest First Half Surprise: The fact that I was able to write a few paragraphs about the Astros and not mention Roger Clemens. If I worked for ESPN, I would be fired for that (I probably wouldn’t have a soul, either.)
Biggest First Half Bust: Take your pick: Andy Pettitte, Brad Lidge, Wandy Rodriguez, or Taylor Buchholz.
Chicago Cubs (AR: 34-54; PPR: 77-85)
For the Cubs’ first three months of 2006, if it could possibly go wrong, it did:
Kerry Wood and Mark Prior still have not made it back to the mound effectively. Derrek Lee got hurt. Greg Maddux is 117 years old. Aramis Ramirez forgot how to hit. Juan Pierre wasn’t nearly as good as advertised.
One would think that things possibly could not get any worse. Wrong. If the Chicago Cubs are involved, it can always get worse.
Biggest First Half Surprise: The fact that Cubs fans have not yet murdered General Manager Jim Hendry and Manager Dusty Baker.
Biggest First Half Bust: Mark Prior is still being sold by the organization as if he was an ace, even though he is 0-4 with a 7.71 ERA.
Pittsburgh Pirates (30-60, 62-100)
The Pirates are honestly the worst baseball team I have ever seen play. Aside from Jason Bay, there is not one player on this team that I would pay money to watch play.
It is absolutely pathetic how bad the Pirates ownership has allowed this once proud and historic franchise to decay. It’s an embarrassment to everyone involved.
Before the season, I figured they would lose about 100 games. Now, only losing 100 would be an accomplishment for the Pirates. It’s just sad.
Biggest First Half Surprise: Freddy Sanchez cranking out a .358 average. Also, it’s a great use of the name “Freddy” instead of “Fred.”
Biggest First Half Bust: Oliver Perez not only being demoted to AAA, but not even being good at that level. What the hell happened to this guy (cough… greenies… cough)?
How I think they’ll finish out:
St. Louis 92-70; Losers of the NLCS to the Pond Scum