The Chicago Cubs Are Trying To Ruin My Life

I don't have the normal hatred of the Chicago Cubs that many of my fellow Cardinals fans possess. While I'm not exactly sympathetic towards them, I am pretty apathetic. I don't exactly cheer for them, but I also don't root against them (except when they're playing the Cards). This apathy generally comes not from growing up in Peoria, which is equally divided in Cubs and Cards fans, but from growing up in Peoria while both franchises sucked. Hard.

A good chuck of my primary childhood/adolescent years (1988-1999) were pretty rough on both teams -- what with only three playoff appearances during the combined twenty four seasons -- and if I was ten years older or ten years younger, perhaps I would feel some more vitriol towards my friends who cheer on the Northsiders. But I don't. It's all apathy, (almost) all the time. Maybe things would be different if I didn't grow up when Mark Whiten and Felix Jose were among the "stars" on the team; I don't really know.

So with the Cubs pushing to win the NL Central earlier this week, I was perfectly content with it. "Let the baby have their bottle" was a mantra I could get behind, especially after winning the fucking World Series last year (If, in fact, that really did happen). I'd be happy for my Cubs fan friends, that they get to enjoy some cold baseball for the first time in four years, get their nerves racked and their livers punished. They're great fucking times, the playoffs (although I am looking forward to a stress free one for the first time in a while).

Then, in Miami earlier this week, the fucking wheels fell off of the Cubbie wagon. They lost their first two games against the Marlins. Meanwhile, the Brewers were beating up on the hapless Cardinals. The magic number would have remained at four for four consecutive games had not Brewers manager Ned Yost made one of the most idiotic managerial decisions I have seen in a fortnight and put an insurance run for the Cards on base in the 8th inning instead of -- I don't know? -- trying to win the fucking game. So the magic number fell to three.

Last night, the Cubs finished off getting swept by Florida. But the Brewers (and Ryan Braun) threw their game (literally) away and lost to the Padres. So now the Cubs magic number sits at two. With three games left.

Where am I going with all of this? My bachelor party is Saturday. Every guy going -- sans myself -- is a Cubs fan.

Which means that either the party could be an absolute complete fucking downer (if the Cubs somehow blow this) or it could be kicked up like nineteen notches (if the Cubs clinch). If something drastic happens and the Brewers move into a tie with the Cubs Saturday night, I would not be surprised if my best man, Nate, knifes me. And that's on the low end of the outcome scale.

Tonight the Cubs have "Bat Shit Insane" Carlos Zambrano going up against "Noted Crap Rocker" Bronson Arroyo of the Reds. Saturday's matinée will feature Cubs rookie Rich Hill battling based balls with Aaron Harang, who recently escaped from a zoo. In the same two day span, the Brewers will be throwing Chris Capuano (who hasn't won a game since the Ford administration) against future Hall of Famer (and one heck of a scotch drinker) Greg Maddux and Dave Bush against Chris Young, respectively.

I have no idea who's matchups favor whom -- honestly all four look like decent matchups -- but for the first time in my adult life, I will be pulling for the Cubs this weekend (we had a brief tryst back in 1984; what can I say? Leon Durham was a heck of a ballplayer and a surprisingly sensitive lover). So, go Cubs.


Because if they keep losing they could, in all actuality, ruin my bachelor party.

And if they do that, well, I don't know what I'll do, but it will probably involve an upper decker and Ron Santo's toilet.

[have a great weekend, everybody. enjoy the penn state v. illionis game. oh wait, you probably can't, because the big ten network is also trying to ruin our lives.]

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Cartoons, Jury Duty, Cardinals

A quick programming note: Weekend cartoons will be getting run up over on the Joe Sports Fan for the foreseeable future, be them either in The Absurd Times or just a Sunday Funnies.


Jury Duty Week came and went with all the luster one would expect. While I had been hoping to watch a judge perform magic tricks, see a tall bald bailiff slap his own head, and be witness to John Larroquette lustfully hit on women, all I really saw was a bunch of ugly people (although John Larroquette was there hitting on chicks. Weird).

I knew I wouldn't get picked for a jury -- the defense wouldn't want me since I'm related to two cops and did a stint as a terrible military cop, and the state wouldn't want me since I have a criminal record and wouldn't convict a guy just for possession of marijuana -- but was looking forward to a week of non-third shift and getting some reading done. Which is exactly what I got. Booooooring.


The Lady Friend and I went down to Busch for Sunday night's Cards-'Stro's match. We hung out in the Casino Queen Party Porch and downed some Boulevard Wheat's before heading up to our seats about half an hour before first pitch. Apparently, Sunday's game was free popsicle night and our seats and the ground below us were covered in red, sugary goodness from the fucking little brats sitting directly behind us. Fantastic.

Luckily, one of TLF's friends wasn't able to make it to the game and we used her seats, located annoyingly close to sign guy. Other than that common street whore, it was a fine game all around and one of the better Cards match we caught this season. I got to give a standing ovation to future Intercontinental Champion Hall of Famer Craig Biggio, Pujols continued to own Lidge, and Ankiel had a walk off triple (those have got to be rare). The 80-something year old lady who tapped me on the shoulder to give me one of the weakest high fives ever capped the night off well. (Well, a bottle of wine and Superbad actually capped the night off; it did it well, too. Whatever.)

And while the game -- and the pregame tribute to Mike Shannon (Bob Uecker's tribute to Mike's coaching legacy with the Denver Broncos was pretty funny) -- were both winners, I believe the real winners Sunday night were us, the fans: No longer do we have to waste our money on sticky seats and crappy beer to watch the likes of Kip Wells, nice-guy-bad-pitcher Mike Maroth, or The Strangest Looking Man Ever give up 27 runs a game.

Heading into the offseason, I want the cards to do two things:

1) Trade for Edgar Renteria. Our sweet little Columbian has been gone for too long.
2) Acquire two of the following three pitchers: AJ Burnett, Cliff Lee, or Livan Hernadez.

Trading for a right handed outfield bat wouldn't hurt, either and I'd love to see Brian Barden get a chance to be the backup infielder (along with concentration camp survivor Brendan Ryan), replacing Aaron Fucking Miles. Actually, I'd love to see the fat kid from Salute Your Shorts on the Cards if it means no more Miles.

Ideally my lineup would be:

Duncan (or possible RH OFer)
Kennedy (gack!)

w/ Ludwick, Spiezio, Ryan, Barden (or the Hoff), Terrible Backup Catcher #9, and Schumaker filling out the bench and Rasmus coming up from AAA when Edmonds goes on the DL with over-lined eyelashes in July.

and a rotation of:


(I'm not banking on Mark Mulder ever throwing a baseball well again and I don't think Reyes will be here next year, but I think Thompson and I can hold down the fort until Carpenter comes back. If, in fact, Mulder/Thompson/Reyes/Me are pitching well when Carp does come back, then have Carp take Loopers spot and send Looper back to the pen before his arm falls off in a unicycle accident.)

And a bullpen filled out by the normal scrubs.

That team, I think, wouldn't exactly run away with the NL Central in 2008. But they also wouldn't give up double digit runs in twenty fucking different games and would be sniffing both the Central leader and the Wild Card.

That is, of course, if the whole team doesn't die in a plane crash this week, which the way the seaon has gone, seems probable if not possible.

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Must of Been Something You SAAAAIIIIID

Because this song just came on VH1 Classic, I am compelled to show this:

Snl - I Just Died In Your Arms Tonight - A funny movie is a click away
On a side note, I spent many a morning in the mess hall of the USS Ashland back in 2003 screaming the SNL version of this fine Cutting Crew classic. Some liked it, others didn't. I, for one, fucking loved it.

And if anyone wants to do this at my wedding, I'm all for it. It's a go.

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I support families. While I don't know if I really want one of my own (children are disgusting), I can understand why others might. Me, I'll be on the porch with a beer, listening to the game. Have fun changing diapers, teaching your kids to read, and loving. Suckers.

Anyhoo, part of being a family is sharing a family meal together. Now I know that the old tyme big Italian-style family meal has gone the way of the employed Italian, to be replaced with such cheap family dinner alternatives like a bucket of KFC or the greatest meal ever invented, Monical's Family Pleaser. That's all well and good, but there's nothing in there for the real dysfunctional family. You know, the boozy, cursing, redneck family. Until now:

As seen at the Conoco in lovely Glen Carbon, IL, it's the Busch Beer Family 12 pack! Awesome. Grab the youngin's from Aunt Lurlene's Daycare and Nails, pile 'em up in the wagon, bail the hubby out of the clink, and swing by the corner gas station for some cool ranch doritos and a family 12 pack of Busch heavies.

Remember: The family that drinks together, stinks together.

(I've got to work on that one.)

[have a great weekend, kids. enjoy suckbowl I.]

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How about you, sideburns?

You'll have to excuse the infrequent at best posting as of late. I have jury duty next week and the thought that some guy may get the chair because I was thinking about Quantum Leap and snoozing underneath my fake eye glasses is a little unnerving. (Question: "What in the world does having jury duty have to do with you not posting on your blog in a week and a half, Al?" Answer: "Shut up.")

Anyway, two things on the baseball front:

1) Barring a minor miracle taking place over the next five days, the 2007 Baseball Cardinals season is officially over. I can say without a smidgen of doubt, that this was the oddest season I have ever seen a baseball team go through.

Case in point: Your utility man (Scott Spiezio) goes into rehab. Three weeks later, he's rocking out on stage with REO Fucking Speedwagon out at Riverport. Meanwhile his team is playing baseball in Arizona. And that's maybe the 237th oddest thing to have happened this season.

Someone needs to write a book on this season. And it should include sex scenes.

2) Former Major League "baseball player" and "guy who don't write good" Mike Pagliarulo has a blog (or something; to call it a blog is almost disrespctful to bloggers everywhere).

What does this have to do with anything? As always, it doesn't. However, for one of the more entertaining reads on the internets, check out the skewering over at the always enjoyable Fire Joe Morgan.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I have a big weekend of doing nothing* at the lake planned to gear up for this jury duty thing next week (which, hopefully, will actually give me something to write about).

*Nothing = Drinking and watching sports

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