« September 2006 | Main | November 2006 »

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Happy Halloween and all that...

Hey what's up interweb? I am super sleepy this morning. I was up half the night watching The 3 Time Superbowl Champion New England Patriots lay a beat down on The 0 Time Superbowl Champion Minnesota Vikings.

I like that The Pats were in a nationally televised game, but damn, those games just go way too late. I wish they could start a little earlier. But that's not going to happen. So I may as well suck it up.

Happy Halloween to all you ghouls out there. My Daughter loves Halloween and came into our bedroom this morning saying 'Trick or Treat!' I think she's a little excited. She will be a Princess for Halloween and my Son will be Superman. I am going as Tom Brady, the football equivalent of Superman.

I have been informed however, that even though I will be dressing up, I am not eligible to receive any candy this evening because I don't have a trick or treat bag. Oh well.

Fuck I need a coffee.

Technorati Tags: ,

Monday, October 30, 2006

Nice win for The Pats vs The Vikings...

Going up against the #1 rushing defense in the league, The Pats countered and successfully went to the air in this game vs. The Vikes. Tom Brady has been spectacular, hooking up with multiple receivers and moving the ball down the field almost at will with the passing game. The Patriots' screen passes have been devastatingly good against The Vikes.

The Pats defense has been simply unrelenting in this game as well. They have been all over The Vikes' quarterbacks, applying non-stop pressure as well as stuffing the run.

9:14 left in the game and the score is 31-7, Pats. The Troy Brown / Pats reception record watch is down to one. One more catch and he has the Pats receiving record all to himself.

At this point, I'm looking for Brady to come out of the game. No need to keep him in there and risk injury at this point. The Vikes need 3 TDs and a field goal just to tie. With the way The Pats D is playing, I'd say that's highly unlikely with 8:30 left in the game... Highly unlikely.

I'd like to see Troy Brown get the receiving record before the game ends but if he doesn't, he'll get it next week in front of the home fans.

Under 5 min left in this one. The Pats made a statement in this game as we get ready for The Colts to come into The Razor next week. Cut that Meat.

Technorati Tags:

Burn Brady Burn...

I'm watching the Pats / Vikes game and I'm a little hinky about posting this, for fear of jinx, but I have to say, Tom Brady and the Pats passing offense is absolutely EN-FUEGO to start this game. Brady has made one mistake so far that wound up as an interception for the Vikes. Other than that, Brady has been spectacular.

On Defense, The Pats have been on the attack, coming after The Vikes QB, Brad Johnson, and keeping the pressure on him, non-stop. The result, multiple interceptions for The Pats, including one that prevented The Vikes from getting points on the board.

Now we need to turn these turnovers into points of our own.

10-0 Pats in the 2nd. Feels like the score should be higher.

Ok. Not too many words on this. Don't want to break the spell...

More later.


Technorati Tags:

Sunday, October 29, 2006

NFL Week 8 picks...

It's week 8 in the NFL! I hope you will stop by 'The End Zone' over at Faster Than the World and check out my weekly story as well as lay witness to a truly incredible feat as I pull this week's game winners right out of my ass.

That's right. You heard me. Right out of my ass folks. Subjectively of course...

Saturday, October 28, 2006

Just when I had started to lose faith in the magic of the internets...

... I discover, THIS: DINOSAUR COMICS!!

Totally. Fucking. Awesome.

Personally, I find it to be really annoying when people emphasize something by typing. something. out. that. way. So you know if I'm doing it, it must be really good.

If you don't laugh at these comics, you have no humor in you. Or you're my Wife, who, after asking what in the world it was that I was laughing at, sarcastically commented, 'oh a cartoon,' then proceeded to just squint at it and state, 'I don't get it.'

Don't listen to her folks. It's funny. I'm telling you.

Friday, October 27, 2006

Parking lot insanity at Dunks

Every Friday I go to Dunkins for a breakfast sandwich and a coffee. It's part of my Reward Friday ritual. My normal daily breakfast consists of a very boring bag of oatmeal, so on Fridays I get the tasty fat. I have my rituals and this is one of them and I don't like my rituals to be fucked with. Otherwise, I get cranky.

The Dunks that I happen to go to is one of those mini-Dunkins that live inside of a gas station, so there's not a lot of parking available and it can get pretty busy. Often times the line is out the door with people waiting for their fix.

Today I pull in and there is a car in front of me waiting to park. In front of that car, there is some dick in one of those extra long, double-cab full size bed pickup trucks taking his time leaving one of the parking spaces. He's in his truck, the engine is running, the reverse lights are on, but he's not moving. He's doing something in the cab of the truck and appears to be very busy. I think maybe he was re-arranging his CD's or something. I don't know, but when you're waiting for your Dunks fix and somebody is not getting out of your way in a timely fashion, patience is limited.

After several minutes, the guy in the pickup finally looks up into his rear-view mirror, notices there's like 3 cars waiting for his spot and proceeds to back out, except that by now, the parking lot is jammed up with cars waiting for spots, thanks to this guy and his extra-long truck. Did I mention that he did such a phenomenal job when he initially parked his vehicle that he managed to block about 3 spaces? Awesome. Totally fucking awesome.

He starts to back out and then stops abruptly, obviously unsure if he will be able to make it out with all of the cars waiting behind him. (For the record there was plenty of space for him to back out.) The cars waiting in line to park are now stacked up and there is a line of them going down the street at this point.

Pickup Guy then proceeds to do a 46 point turn in his long-ass truck so that he can pull straight out of the tiny parking lot and not have to back out, since he obviously has not mastered that skill. 

'WHAT THE FUCK ARE YOU DOING GUY??' I said to no-one in particular as I watched this mind-boggling display of bad drivesmanship.

Eventually he makes it out of the space (to the sound of golf-clapping from several other drivers) and four cars immediately zip in to fill the void.

My day can continue now.

So, in summation:
- Don't make people wait for their Dunks fix in the morning while you decide what CD to listen to on your way to where-ever.

- Don't get behind the wheel of one of those extra full-size pickups if you don't have the necessary skills to actually drive it.

Thank you.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

You're a mean one...

I'm like the Halloween Grinch this year. I can't wait for Halloween to be over. There are several reasons for this.

One, my kids have been talking about Halloween since July, which, don't get me wrong, I want them to have fun, but after several months of Halloween talk, I am pretty Halloween'ed out at this point.

Two, nightmares. Since my kids have been so over-the-top looking forward to Halloween, we started letting them have some Halloween stuff early. Around mid-September, we gave them some Halloween stories and I gave them a Scooby-Doo book for their story-reader. (A story reader is a toy that, well, reads books. It comes with special books and when you turn a page, it starts reading the page. It's pretty cool.)

Shortly thereafter, my son started getting nightmares on a nightly basis. For weeks my wife and I would be awakened several times a night because of scary shadows, creeps, scary pumpkins, mean witches and all kinds of other crazy things. When my son started saying, 'ZOINKS, I saw a shadow!' I knew what it was. Fucking Scooby-Doo. What the fuck was I thinking? Another idea blows up and backfires in my face. What else is new?

It didn't help that the nightmare material is abundant this time of year. The kids go into a store with my Wife and there's Halloween stuff everywhere. Normally it's not a problem to determine what is kid appropriate and what is 'scary', but not this time of year. There's skulls and demons and werewolves all over the place and there's no way to really know which creature is going to induce a nightmare and which one is just 'funny'. There's no rhyme or reason to it. What kind of pumpkin is a scary pumpkin and what kind of pumpkin is a nice pumpkin? I don't know. One witch is 'mean' and one witch is 'silly'. How am I supposed to tell what ghost is 'scary' and what ghost is 'nice'? It all looks like the same Halloween decoration crap to me.

It got to the point where we had to take all of the Halloween stories and other stuff away and tell them they could not have it back till it was almost Halloween. Thankfully the nightmares have subsided and we have been able to get back to getting a full night's sleep again.

Last but not least in my list of the reasons that I don't like Halloween this year: candy. Candy. Candy. Candy. Candy. All day long, 'can I have some candy?' My kids wake up in the morning. 'Dad, can we have some candy?'

'Sorry no candy before breakfast.'

'Ok. Maybe after breakfast?'


Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Two alarms required...

I hate getting out of bed in the morning and actually need two separate alarms in order to haul my lazy ass up.

When the first alarm, my clock radio, goes off, I don't think I actually even hear it. My body subconciously reacts to the sound by flinging an arm out and slamming a hand down on the 'shut the fuck up' button, then it's back to sleep.

About 15 minutes later, my iPod goes off. I have a set of speakers plugged into the dock where it sits and charges. You use the iPod as an alarm clock and set it to make some sort of horrendously loud beep at the desired time. This is the alarm that actually makes me get up and, in a daze, hit the shower.

Time to start another day. It's hump day at least. On hump day I often give myself a mid-week reward by going to the nearest Dunks for an afternoon coffee. Right now it's time to get the mornin' one goin... (YAWN).

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Look Ma, he can chew gum and walk at the same time... sorta

I've been trying to teach myself to sing and play the guitar at the same time. Now I'm sure to many people this is a little bit like saying, 'I'm teaching myself to walk and chew gum' but believe it or not, singing and playing is fucking hard! Well, for me anyway... but I'm getting better at it.

I have a horrible voice, and I'm certainly not going to be taking Jaymz Hetfield's place fronting Metallica, but I am now able to sing along and play some simple tunes from memory.

A couple example tunes:
Social Distortion: Prison Bound, Story of My Life
Misfits: Skulls

I usually save the 'singing' part for the tail end of practice so as not to subject the household to too much torture.

And the next time you start to rag on Metallica, ask yourself if you could play 'Master of Puppets' and sing the words at the same time.

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Pats win against Buffalo...

The Pats looked good against the Bills from what I saw today. I was at my Mom's house for an early dinner / birthday thing so I did not get to really sit and watch the game, though I did catch several of the big plays.

Tom Brady appeared to take a beating in this game and I noted that several members of Buffalo's offense seemed to have it out for Rodney Harrison today. Harrison became entangled with various players on The Bills side of the ball after the play had ended on several occasions, and during the plays where there was no extra-curricular activity afterwards, Harrison could be seen noticeably jawing with several members of the Bills offense after the play was over. Also, I used the word 'several' on several occasions in that last paragraph.

Pats RBs Maroney and Dillon both performed well in the running game and at one point Maroney pulled of a fantastic kick-off return for 74 yards.

The Troy Brown / Patriots all-time reception record watch continues. Troy got 2 in today's game. That leaves him needing only 4 more catches to take the Patriots all-time receiving record for his own.

All in all The Pats looked solid as I ran back and forth between my Mom's kitchen, the dinner table and the living-room TV. It was a good start for the 2nd half of their season.

Next week we'll face a very dangerous Minnesota Vikings team on the road. The Vikes upset the Seahawks today. This next game will be a challenge for The Patriots and it will be in front of a national audience on Monday Night Fooseball.

Technorati Tags:

Thursday, October 19, 2006

The Epic Story of Social Distortion and The Supersuckers

I left work late Monday afternoon and headed into Boston. I was heading in to see a show later that night. Social Distortion was playing in town, along with The Supersuckers and The Blackpool Lights.

I drove down RT 2 East, headed for the city. As I came over a rise in the highway, I could see the entire city of Boston and Cambridge laid out there ahead of me. It was like looking down on a model of the city. Pretty cool.

I drove past Harvard University and made my way down towards Fenway Park. The place where I was going, The Avalon, is located right across the street from Fenway. 'This time, I'm not getting lost,' I told myself. I've been to Boston many times, but it seems like every time I drive in there, I wind up getting lost somewhere along the line. Of course, as far as cities go, Boston is not really that big, so you're never really 'lost', you're just kind of turned around, perpetually turned around at times.

Thankfully it was a Monday night and traffic was pretty light this time of night. I made my way over to Fenway and parked in a lot right across the street from the ballpark. I have to say, I was pretty impressed with myself for making it over there without having to turn around or swear at anybody, not even once.

It was only about 6:30 PM and I had time to kill before the show so I walked over to the club to see if anything was going on outside. There were a few people hanging around and there were some guys loading up the storage compartments on the busses parked outside with cases of Rolling Rock beer. I kind of laughed at the sight and continued on past the club. Time to get something to eat.

I headed over to a place behind Fenway Park called The Baseball Tavern. It's a really cool bar that's kind of off the beaten path, unlike The Cask n Flagon or Boston Beer Works, which are located right across the street from Fenway. The Baseball Tavern is a few streets away. That's where you go if you're in the know, ya know?

I sat at the bar, had a whiskey and a beer and ordered a sandwich. I had plenty of time before the show so I took my time, had another beer and watched some Monday Night Football pre-game.

Around 7:30 I settled up and walked back over to the club. As you walk into The Avalon you enter a big hallway where there is a coat room, restroom entrances and of course, the t-shirt tables. The first table I was presented with was the Social Distortion table. I checked out all the Social D shirts but nothing was really jumping out at me. There was one design they had that I liked but it was on some big hoodie thing and I was not interested in that. I am not a big concert t-shirt guy anymore. I used to buy one at every show I went to, but now, eh, who needs another t-shirt..

I walked farther down the dim hallway into the club. In the corners of the hallway were these cool statues that looked like Robbie the Robot from the movie Forbidden Planet, except they were painted white and they had these neat plasma globes inside of them.

As I got to the end of the hallway, right near the entrance to the main part of the club, at a much smaller table, was the Supersuckers t-shirt guy. He had a Philadelphia 76'er's hoodie on and a Boston Red Sox ball-cap. 'That's a weird combo,' I thought, 'You're not supposed to mix sports cities like that.'

There was a clear container on the corner of the table that looked like an old plastic candy jar and there was duct tape stuck diagonally across the front of the container bearing the words 'FOR THE BAND'. I shook my head and laughed. Fucking guys.

I checked out all the Supersuckers t-shirts. Again, nothing was really saying 'buy me' but I wanted to help spread the evil of The Supersuckers so I asked the guy how much for a shirt. '15,' he said, 'and I'll throw in a CD for another $5.'

'I've already got all of those CD's' I said, smiling.

'Do you have 'Devil's Food'? I've got more of those coming out.'

'Yeah, got that one too.'

He just looked at me, grinned and shrugged like, 'Oh well'.

I told him I'd probably come back and buy a shirt after I'd had a couple drinks. 'Bring one back for me,' he said.

'Ok. That I'll do,' I told him.

I headed into the club, bought a beer and stood around near the stage barrier waiting for the first band, The Blackpool Lights. While I was waiting around, I could not help but notice some of the characters in there. There was one kid there with, I'm guessing it was his Mom, who could not have been more than 10 years old. He looked a little nervous. There was another kid who looked about 12 or 13, hair slicked back, wearing a black leather jacket with the words Social Distortion on the back. It looked like the words were hand drawn. That's pretty cool I thought.

After a short time, The Blackpool Lights, a band from Kansas City, walked out on stage. They walked onto stage to the sound of complete and total silence. Nobody clapped, cheered or yelled. Just silence. 'Alright that's the way we like to make an entrance,' the singer said, 'subdued'.

Undaunted, they launched into their set. The lead singer played a Tele and the lead guitar player had a gold top Les Paul that had the finish completely worn off where his forearm rested on the body of the guitar as he slammed the strings. Impressed? Yes I was. The drummer had on a prosthetic leg below the knee but you'd never know it from his playing.

I did not know any of their songs, but I thought The Blackpool Lights put on a great show. The band grew on the people in the crowd too and they became more animated and cheered louder at the end of each song. The band seemed to appreciate that. The singer noted that this was their first time playing Boston and they liked the response. I enjoyed The Blackpool Lights set. I liked their songs and they even mixed in a short little Tom Petty cover into their set. I'm planning to check out their latest CD very soon.

After The Blackpool Lights finished, I headed over to the bar and got a couple Sam Adams beers. One for me, one for the Supersuckers t-shirt guy. I walked back to the shirt table and he was talking to somebody about buying a shirt. I put the beer on the table and said, 'Here you go dude!'

'Hey! I was only joking before, but thanks! That's the best present I've gotten all night!'

'No problem,' I said. 'Have a good one!'

I headed back to the front of the stage and waited for The Supersuckers. I only found out about these guys a relatively short time ago after reading about them over on Faster Than the World. Shit it's only been six months since I first heard these guys? I feel like I've been listening to them all my life.

I was really looking forward to seeing The Supersuckers, ever since I had seen on their site that they were touring with Social D out on the West Coast, I had eagerly hoped that they would come East. I tried not to get my hopes up, because that line-up is almost too good. I figured it was a West Coast stint for both bands and I would not get lucky enough for them to stick together for an East Coast tour, but lo and behold, one day I checked their site and there was a big list of Social D East Coast dates and The Supersuckers were listed on the Boston date. It took me about 30 seconds to get my ticket order in, then it was time to wait.

Now the waiting was over and I was at the front of the stage, right in the middle, right next to the barrier. The Supersuckers came out to a lot of cheers from the Monday night crowd. It was hard to tell how many people there actually knew who they were, but when lead singer and bass player Eddie Spaghetti walked up to the mic and said, 'Hey everybody, we're The Supersuckers, The Greatest Rock and Roll Band in the World!' the cheering ensued. And with that, it was on and they proceeded to rock Boston's ass with the appropriately named song, 'Rock Your Ass'.

'I said I'm Eddie Spaghetti here to rock yo asses steady. Are you ready? Then grab a drink and chug-a-lug, have some sex and take some drugs, aright!'

The Supersuckers are all about not taking things seriously, having fun and a pair of Les Paul guitars with lots of distortion, wah-pedal fueled solos and a lot of crashing symbols. In short, a great fucking time.

The Supersuckers put on a great show and had a lot of fun with the audience. Eddie commented appreciatively on how many people were there to see the opening band on a Monday night. 'You know, even though it's a Monday, it feels almost like a really great Thursday' he joked.

Some of the other songs from the Supersuckers set included, 'Pretty Fucked Up,' 'Paid', 'Creepy Jackalope Eye', and 'The Evil Powers of Rock n Roll'. They did a whole bunch of the songs that I knew and that made it more fun.

At one point in the show Eddie let everybody in the band play his bass. Each member of the band acted thrilled and surprised at the chance to feel the power of the bass guitar. Even the drummer got into the act, hitting the strings with one drumstick while he kept the beat with the other. After everybody in the band had their turn, Eddie put the neck of the bass out over the stage barrier to let people in the crowd feel the awesome power of the bass guitar too.

It was a lot of fun. A really great time. As the band was ending the set, Eddie told the crowd that he'd be in the back of the club afterwards to meet people if they wanted to. He said they had special people waiting in the back to hold the places for everybody standing up near the front, 'so if you're in the front don't worry, your spot for Social D will still be there waiting for you when you come back...'

Wise ass. I just shook my head and laughed.

So of course, after The Supersuckers finished their set, with everyone in the band bowing in unison in a Skynyrd like fashion, I felt obliged to head back over to the shirt area and shake Eddie Spaghetti's hand. There were some people there talking to him but it was not overly crowded. I waited till he was done talking to one guy then I went up and shook his hand. I told him it was a great show and thanked him for rockin' my ass steady. 'Eddie Spaghetti! Thanks for rockin' my ass steady!' was my exact quote.

I have to say, I thought that it was extremely cool that Eddie went and hung out back there and just talked to everybody and met people after his set. You don't see that happen. Ever. Well, I've never seen that happen anyway...

After my quick brush with rock stardom I headed back to the stage, much to the chagrin of those around me. Now I'm not that big of a guy and I was not shoving anybody and I was saying 'scuse me' and what not, basically trying to make my way through the crowd as unobtrusively as possible, but a couple people got agitated that I was trying to get back to the middle of the floor. One guy was all full of attitude because I had accidentally bumped into him and his girlfriend had to move her foot.

I was not in there to cause trouble or fight with anybody but I just looked at him and calmly said, 'Do you know where you are?'

'Yeah, I do. I know where I am, do you?'

I just smiled. 'Have you ever been to one of these shows before? Because in case you don't know yet, there's a good chance that someone might bump into you here, so I think you should relax a little. Now, sorry I bumped into you on my way by.'

I turned around and kept going and somebody was grabbing my shirt. I don't know if it was him or his girlfriend, or somebody else. I don't know who was still tugging on my shirt, but I was going out of my way to be polite as I walked through the crowd, so I got tried of it. I turned around and was like, 'WHO THE FUCK IS GRABBING ON ME? WHAT THE FUCK?'

One of the guys next to me said, 'hey you wanna get by, no problem.'

'Thanks' I said. 'I think some of these people have never been to a show like this before.'

I had found my spot back near the middle of the stage. I was not standing next to the speakers again. I know what happens when you stand next to the speakers. I was going right back to where I was, or at least back to the same general area, so sorry if I bumped into you on the way by.

Ironically I noticed later that the people who were so agitated by my passage earlier wound up standing right on the edge of where the pit was. I hope they did not mind getting bumped into. Heh.

Once again, it was time to wait, but it was not long before the lights went down and Social D came out onto the stage. Mike Ness emerged bearing a dozen or so roses. He threw one or two out into the crowd and then threw out the whole bunch.

At this point the crush was on as I was pushed into the people in front of me by the people behind. The people in front pushed back and that's how it went for a few minutes, like a big wave moving back and forth until it finally broke and the pit got going.

I was right on the edge of it so I got in and jumped around for a while then jumped back out to rest and watch the show. I only went in a few times because I mainly wanted to watch Social Distortion play, but I stayed near the edge and when I got the urge I'd jump in there.

Social Distortion was great. They are such a great band live. Mike Ness is so intense on stage as he is performing and his voice has that angry quality to it, like he's just spitting out his rage and anger over all the junk in his life with every word as he lays into the strings of his gold top Les Paul. Then when a song ends, he has this funny sense of humor as he banters with the crowd.

(image © courtesy Jeremy Saffer)

'You know', he starts, 'I kind of have a feeling, some of you might not be making it into work tomorrow morning... then after a moment he says with a smile, 'ah fuck that fucking job man... tell your boss Mike Ness said you can have the day off.'

Some of the songs they did included 'Reach For The Sky', 'Nickels and Dimes', 'Prison Bound', 'Mommy's Little Monster', 'Ball and Chain' and 'Sometimes I Do', which also featured some guest vocals from Eddie Spaghetti.

One of the humorous moments that occurred during the show was when Mike noticed the young kid that I had described earlier, 'I noticed some of you are here with your Mothers, you guys should consider yourselves lucky...' then he saw the young kid and started laughing and said, 'look at you, how the hell did you get in here anyway?'

Social D ended the night with the Johnny Cash tune, 'Ring of Fire' and then headed off stage. The show was over.

(image © courtesy Jeremy Saffer)

I hung around near the barrier as I waited for people to clear out. At one point someone from the stage crew dropped a set list down to the floor and it landed right next to me. I thought I had a cool souviner there for a second, but he told me it was for one of the very eager female fans who was leaning over the barrier. I handed it over to her and she was pretty excited. I would have liked to have had a set list, but all it is, is a printout with a list of songs on it, so no big deal.

After the crowd had thinned out I headed out the exit, past the members of The Blackpool Lights who were handing out free posters, and back into the night, happy that I had seen a great show and knowing that I did not have to go to work in the morning.

Even thought Mike Ness had said that I could take the next day off, I had thought ahead and cleared it with the boss first.

Technorati Tags: , ,

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

A day off...

Hey gang. How's it going? I had today off from work and did not do much except hang around the house and help my Wife move some boxes around in the basement. She is a school teacher and has boxes and boxes of books. Those fuckers are heavy, l'll tell you what. And those cabinets and shelves are almost full.

I went to see Social D and The Supersuckers last night. Black Pool Lights was there too. All of the bands were really good. It was a fucking phenomenal show and I had a great time. I will write something up about it in the next day or so.

Some highlights included:
NOT getting lost driving in Boston (this may be the first time I've ever accomplished this feat.)

Made the Supersuckers t-shirt guy happy by buying him a Sam Adams. He was trying to talk me into buying a shirt, but I did not really have money for a shirt. He said then the least I could do was buy him a beer, so I said I would come back later with a beer for him, which, of course, I did. I'm a man of my word after all. But he was still happily surprised.

Oh and I met Eddie Spaghetti and thanked him for rockin' my ass steady.

Oh and of course Social D. They were there too. Fucking awesome. That pretty much goes without saying.

AND no tweaked or bent body parts. Just lots of tiredness from staying out past bedtime.

Speaking of which... it's about that time. So look for a painfully detailed synopsis of the show, probably tomorrow or so.

Technorati Tags: ,

Monday, October 16, 2006

Social D and the Supersuckers: TONIGHT

Social Distortion and The Supersuckers. Tonight. I've been looking forward to this show for months. Social D is my favorite band and after hearing them on Faster Than the World a while back, The Supersuckers have rapidly become another one of my favorites as well, so this is going to be good.

One of my new faves opening for my old fave.

Several months ago, I noticed that Social D was doing a bunch of West Coast shows with the Supersuckers and I imagined how great it would be if they were to both come out to do some East Coast shows too. I tried not to get too hopeful about it because I figured this was probably just a West Coast stint for both bands and the two of them staying together for an East Coast tour would be too good to be true.

None the less, every few weeks I'd check the tour schedule to see if there were any East Coast shows coming up and when I saw there was suddenly a Boston date listed, I bought my ticket that day.

Well today's the day of the show I am stoked because this is going to be great. The only downer is that it's a Monday, but I took tomorrow off. I figured these old bones will need a day to recover and now I don't have to worry about dragging my tired, potentially beat ass into work tomorrow.

How's that for thinkin' ahead?

Now it's time to head out. Maybe I'll see you there... I can't fucking wait for this thing.


(image via Social Distortion.com)

Technorati Tags: ,

Fill 'em up...

Check em out. Here are the shelves that we put together yesterday.

Notice how empty they are. This is probably only going to last about 48 hours. After that, every inch of this thing will be filled. My kids have already gotten inside the cabinets and have voiced their approval: 'It's like a really big fort in here!'


Kudos to my Father-In-Law. He has totally awesome carpentry skills and has the ultimate set of tools. He designed and built this thing all by himself in his workshop. Once it was finished, we disassembled it, moved all the peices to my house and then re-assembled it in my basement.

I think it came out awesome and my Wife can't wait to fill 'er up!

Left to do:
Cover up Lally columns, box in and hide sump-pump, finish doing any leftover trim and paint. At some point we'd like to get a table for the kids to sit at and do activities, but that's for later down the road.

Sunday, October 15, 2006

There's no Football today...

Well, there's no Patriots football today that is, but you can still read my NFL story over at Faster Than the World. Check it out. I hope you like it.

I am going to be getting some stuff done today I hope. We are, supposedly, after weeks of delay and frustrating waiting, going to be putting the finishing touches on our basement room today.

I can't tell you how good this is going to feel to get this thing done, not just because I'm sick of working on it, but because we can finally get rid of the piles of stuff that are all over the place in our house.

My Wife and I are both people who do not like a mess. If the kids make a mess with their toys and stuff, that is fine, but we want it picked up before bed. Otherwise, we're likely to put it all in a big trash bag and throw it out the door. Well over the past year that it's taken to do this project, the stuff that had been piled up in the basement, out of sight, has been piled up all over the house. It had to go somewhere while we worked.

This has caused an underlying current of stress for my Wife and I. It's just a daily thing that is there, silly or not. I hate seeing those piles and my Wife hates seeing those piles. We know we have no choice and they have to be there, but we hate them none-the-less, and it gets under your skin, and it causes a stressful environment. It's just one more thing you have to deal with.

Well hopefully after today, that problem will be rectified and it's going to be a relief.

And If I'm going to spend the day in the basement working, at least it's a bye week for The Pats.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Now, for the grand prize... define the word, 'Schadenfreude'

'OH FUCK! Serious?? Damn.'

That would have been my reaction a few days ago if I were an imaginary game show contestant with the grand prize on the line.

After the MFY were eliminated from the post-season last weekend, I read post after post at various Red Sox sites using this word. It kind of got on my nerves that I had no idea what the word actually meant.

'Schadenfreude... Schadenfreude. What the hell is Schadenfreude? And why is it always capitalized?'

So I looked it up. Schadenfreude: Pleasure derived from the misfortunes of others.

See, reading Red Sox sites makes you smarter.

Faster Than the World is now even faster than before...

If you have not stopped by Faster Than the World lately, you should head over there and check it out. The site has been totally revamped so that all of the day's stories are now available on one page and it looks great!

With over 20 authors writing over the course of 7 days, there's something there for everyone. Some stories might make you laugh, some might make you think, and some might make you say, 'damn that's pretty fucked up!' But either way, there's a lot of good stuff over there, so check it out!

And don't forget, the folks over at Faster Than the World are always looking for new stories and writers, so if you want to contribute anything, as a one-shot deal or on a regular basis, just drop them a note and let them know!

See you over there!

Monday, October 09, 2006

Let me know when style points start to count in the NFL...

Today was a day off for me. Yup, I was one of the lucky ones. It was a good day. We took the kids to the top of Mount Wachusett, which is a 'mountain' located near our house.

I have a hard time referring to Mount Wachusett as an actual mountain, having been a frequent visitor to the real mountains out West (The Rockies), but whatever. It's still a nice place to take the kids and walk around.

It was a warm, clear day and we had some great views all around. We brought our lunch with us and had a little picnic and, the highlight of the trip, we saw a frog! Yes, that's right, a real. live. FROG! It was swimming in a walled in pond at the summit, along with some fish, and my goodness, it was breathtakingly exciting.

The things that my kids get excited about... it's funny. They came very close to swimming with the frog on several occasions, but thankfully they managed to stay out of the water.

After we came home, I did a little reading on the interwebs and I was surprised to read so much bitching about The Patriots game yesterday. The Pats won the game, but, it was not considered by many to be a 'good' win.


I don't get it. The way some people talk about The Patriots right now, you'd think they were 1-4, not 4-1. I read and hear a lot of, 'Yeah, they're winning, but it's not convincing. They're ugly wins.'

Phht. Whatever dude.

A lot of people seem to think The Patriots are going to stomp every team they face into the ground. They think they're going to run for 200 yards in every game and not allow a touchdown on defense. Well why not, I mean, they ran for umpteen-something yards last week, why didn't they do it again this week? Hmm. I don't know, maybe because they played against a different team this week?


Instead of being happy that the team got the win, against a divisional opponent no less, most of the stuff I read had people complaining about the way they got the win. Who cares? They way they got the win was by scoring more points than the other team. The last time I checked, style points don't count for shit in the NFL.


Technorati Tags:

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Yankees lose, Patriots win. Yay!

Ok, I could not say this until now but, REVERSE JINX!! Ha ha! It worked!

All that time I was going along saying that Detroit could not beat the Yankees and how if The Tigers lost, the A's could not beat the Yankees, it was the classic, 'Reverse Jinx'. And it worked. And I am happy.

My Wife is happy too because my 'Yankee Elimination' beard was getting really scruffy.

Now we can enjoy the rest of the MLB playoffs in peace, which is nice, but there's one thing I've gotta say about the baseball playoffs that really bugs me though. What is with all the champagne in the MLB playoffs? They love to pop the cork in baseball don't they?

There's a champagne shower for making it into the playoffs, then a champagne shower for each series win. I don't get that. I mean, I'm sure it's fun and all but here's the thing, YOU HAVEN'T WON ANYTHING YET!!

Do you ever see this in any other sport? You don't see people popping open the bubbly for advancing into the next round in hockey or football and I'm pretty sure it does not happen in basketball.

The champagne should not come out until you have won the championship and you're walking off the field / ice / court with the trophy held high over your head. That's just what I think.

The Pats got the 20-10 win against The Fish today to improve their overall record to 4-1. Meanwhile, The Bills and Jets both lost their games, so The Pats continue to pull away from the rest of the AFC East.

Todays' game was pretty much low stress for me. I had a good feeling about this one all week going in and even though The Patriots were facing The Fish, who always play The Pats tough, I was never really worried about this game, even when, at one point in the game, it was only a 3 point Patriots lead.

That is very unusual for me. Usually I'm acting like a maniac during games, but today I was quite calm throughout the entire game. I had the Lucky Pats Beer Mug and my lucky Patriots socks and my confidence in the Pats ability to get the win. It was quite zen-like. Ohhhhhmmmm.

The Pats running game was not really there this week, and the passing game was not spectacular but the bottom line is they got the job done. Kevin Faulk fumbled the ball on a return at one point in the game, which I was not happy to see, but that is Faulk. He has a tendency to fumble every now and then. Thankfully there was no damage done.

On the other hand, The Pats were able to take advantage of several Miami turnovers and turn them into points and that was pretty much the game. Overall I thought it was a good win for The Patriots heading into a bye week.

I watched some of the Philly / Dallas game. It was looking like Dallas was going to get a game-tying touchdown in the closing seconds of the game, but Dallas QB Drew Bledsoe had the ball intercepted in the end-zone and Philly took it all the way back for a back-breaking TD. Too bad for Drew. I kinda felt bad for him. Oh well.

I saw that Indy managed to beat Tennessee in that game, 14-13. Tennessee gave The Colts a game there. I was hoping Tennessee would hand Indianapolis their first loss. Disappointing.

I was surprised to see Green Bay take the 23-20 loss to St. Louis today and I was also surprised to see The J-E-T-S get annihilated by Jacksonville, 41-0. Oakland lost again by a score of 34-20 to San Fran and now they are sitting at 0-4. Good.

Technorati Tags: ,

Friday, October 06, 2006

Random Thoughts for a Friday

First of all, it's REWARD Friday, so reward yourself for getting through the week.

My iPod woke up sick this morning. I went to sync it up with my computer and it was giving me the spinning disk of death on the display screen. A few weeks ago the iPod holder that I use when I work out broke and the iPod hit the floor 3 or 4 times before I figured out what was going on and why it kept falling out of the holder. The spinning disk of death is usually not a good sign, so I let it have the day off.

I attempted to listen to the radio on the drive in to work but, I shit you not, I could not find any radio stations that were playing any music. Every button I pressed brought me to some stupid DJ yukkin' it up with his compadres in the studio. Sickening. Radio sucks.

The only CD I had in the car was 'Nevermind' from Nirvana. I had been a while since I last listened to that one. I still like that record, even if it is somewhat main-stream / over-played or whatever you call it these days.

I remember when it came out. I loved Nirvana's first record, 'Bleach,' and I was in a record store, Newbury Comics in Natick MA, and they were playing 'Nevermind' in the store. I went up to the desk and asked the guy, 'Is this Nirvana?' 'Yup!' I bought the cassette on the spot. Nirvana hit it big shortly thereafter.

Switching gears, Monday is a company holiday so I've got a long weekend this weekend. Psyched? Yes I am. I'll be doing a lot of work around the house on Saturday and Sunday, so it will be good to have Monday off to hopefully do nothing. I'd like to get most of my work done before The Pats game Sunday afternoon. I don't really see it happening but we'll see how that goes. If not there's always the radio.

My Wife is having a 'girl's night out' tonight, so I'm home taking care of the kids. I'm watching 'Cast Away' on TV. Great flick. Right now the boat is going past Tom Hank's raft out in the middle of the ocean. GET UP TOM! GET UP!

On a final note, Faster Than The World has some new writers debuting over the next few days. They've got a hockey writer now and that is awesome! Hockey Rules. So head over there and check that out if you get the itch for some interesting stuff to read. And don't forget about the Halloween Fiction writing contest and also my NFL stories on Sundays. This week it's all about my favorite backup teams.

Have a good weekend!

Thursday, October 05, 2006

My nemisis, the snack machine...

Usually when I go to the snack machine at work, I get a bag of peanut M&M's. I would love to get a bag of regular peanuts, or maybe some peppermint patties, because they are less fattening, but those items are located on a row in the machine has not worked for months.

The low-fat snacks sit there, tantalizing you, making you want them, but they are unselectable. No matter how many times you press D-5, D-5, D-5 on the machine key pad, you just get a mocking, 'BEEP' and an 'Invalid Selection' on the machine's display window.

So, in an attempt to make some kind of healthy snack selection, as opposed to, say a can of soda and a bag of chips, I usually get the peanut M&M's. That way I can at least tell myself that I'm getting the peanut factor, since peanuts are supposedly good for you. Granted they are chocolate coated peanuts, but it's the thought that counts.

Today I went to visit my nemesis, the snack machine, and as usual, like some kind of sadist, I tried to get the plain bag of peanuts, even though I knew that the machine would sit there and laugh at me internally, giving me the 'BEEP' 'Invalid Selection', which I think is machine language for 'Fuck you dick'.

After a few tries at the peanuts, I sighed defeatedly and went for the peanut M&M's, but I was not paying attention as I pressed the buttons and I fat fingered the keypad. I had pressed the wrong number combo!

'OH NO!' I thought, 'I'm gonna wind up with Good N' Plenty or some horrid thing like that!'

I anxiously watched the snack machine window, waiting to see what would fall into the bin. It was a bag of chocolate M&M's. Oh, the irony. You vindictive snack machine. I hate you.

'Bitch!' I spat, cursing the machine out under my breath as I walked away with a bag of fat pellets in hand.

Was it a Freudian slip perhaps? Did my subconscious really want the chocolate M&M's and make me 'accidentally' press the wrong buttons on purpose? Or was it just another case of the vending machine playing fuck fuck with me...

We'll never know, but I ate the chocolate M&M's anyway.

I'm rooting for whoever is playing the Yankees...

Despite what I wrote yesterday, I'm compelled to break my own rules and get a quick post up here.

I've got my little baseball scoreboard updater thingy up on my compy screen and I'm keeping track of the MFY / Detroit game during my occasional visits to my desk.

1-0, Detroit in the 3rd. Obviously, I'm rooting for Detroit in this series, as my mantra for the entire playoffs will be, 'I'm rooting for whoever is playing The Yankees' until they are eliminated.

I hope Detroit is up to the task but my gut, which, god-dammit, is almost always right, tells me they are not. I hope they can at least make it go 5 games and wear out the MFY geriatric pitching staff.

My #2 team, The Twinkies, are on the brink of elimination against Oakland. Oakland has not been known for their ability to finish off teams that are down 0-2 during their last few post-season appearances (heh, I said 'finish off'. so immature), but they will probably accomplish that feat this time around against The Twins.

I'd almost rather see Oakland sweep the Twins at this point so they can rest up and get ready for the ALCS, but I don't know if Oakland has what it takes to beat The MFY either...

I am very nervous about this whole MLB post-season. The Yankees MUST be eliminated at some point, preferably before they can reach The World Series, but their eventual elimination is imperative.

The thought of tools like Giambi and A-Fraud wearing World Series rings, and Johnny Damon sporting a Sox ring and a MFY ring... well lets just say I don't want to talk about it anymore because my stomach is starting to get all burbley just thinking about it.

Technorati Tags: ,

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Blah, whatever...

Lately what's been happing with this thing is that I think of something I might like to write about, usually while I'm at work, since that's where I spend 80% of my life, and I try to make a mental note and file it away for later.

I try as much as possible to avoid coming in here during work, so I tell myself, 'That would be cool to talk about on the site. I'll do that when I get home.'

But by the time I get home, I am no longer in a writing mood because when I get home, I've transitioned from my paying job to my other job, which is taking care of all the various things that need to be taken care of here at home. By the time that stuff is done, I've lost all my motivation to talk about whatever it was that I thought was funny earlier in the day, which sucks, because I like writing in here and getting comments on posts and all that. It's fun.

On top of that, I've been trying to do other stuff, like read more and things like that, but there's only so many hours in a day, so the site has been the thing that's been falling off the plate lately. There's got to be some way of working all this stuff in somehow, but I can't seem to figure out how to do it... Oh well. Maybe if I wrote faster... har.

Fiction Writing contest over at FTTW!

Hey gang, I've got some fun news to pass on. Faster Than The World is holding a fiction writing contest for the month of Rock-tober! Check it out:

The theme for you story should be applicable to Halloween; not necessarily about Halloween, but something appropriate for the season - examples would be ghost stories, horror fiction, anything spooky, scary, gory or creepy...

Sound interesting? Got some Stephen King in ya? Well then head on over there and get your stuff out there for everybody to see. Like always, it's all about having fun and maybe making people cringe and shudder with fear... or something like that.

Monday, October 02, 2006

Mondays are always better after a Patriots win...

What a difference a week makes. Last Monday, after The Pats were beaten by Denver, I was glum and depressed. This Monday, even though, well, it's Monday, I'm in a pretty good mood. A Patriots win on Sunday will do that for me.

Yes, I realize that it's not necessarily a good thing that the outcome of a football game can have a profound effect on my mood, but like it or not, that is the way it is.

The Pats looked good yesterday against the Bengals and I hope they will only continue to get better as the team continues to gel both on offense and defense. A win like yesterday's can be a big step in bonding the team and creating that special team-first attitude in the locker-room. You could tell that the 'us against them' mentality was already forming by reading some of the players comments. When you have guys like Tedy Bruschi saying things like (paraphrased), 'We know all we have are the people in this room,' you know the team is starting to come together.

Jarringly switching gears, I love how the sports media, ESPN in particular, seems to be falling all over itself to try and poke fun at some of the 'expert' picks that were made in the NFL's pre-season, as if they were not the ones that made those predictions in the first place. You know, the ones that have all turned out to be completely wrong? Yeah, those.

'Ha ha ha! Who were those fools who picked Miami to win the Superbowl this year? Miami is 1-3. What a bunch of dummies those NFL experts are. Ha ha h.. Oh. Wait. We made those picks? Ummmm... ahh. Yeah. Hmmm.'

It would be even more funny if Miami turned the tables on the 'experts' yet again and went on a little run over the next few weeks (when they're not playing The Patriots of course).

Stupid media.

Technorati Tags:

Sunday, October 01, 2006

2nd, 3rd and 4th Q: Pats / Bengals

Ok, I had written something for the 2nd quarter, but I got all excited and hit the refresh button and lost it. Oh well.

It does not matter at this point because now it's the start of the 4th Quarter. The Pats defense has done well, very well actually, limiting the potent Cincy offense, for the most part. They gave up 2 field goals in the 1st and since then have only allowed Cincy a single touchdown.. Even better, the Pats D has taken the ball away from Cincy and forced some turnovers, and the Offense has converted those turnovers into points.

Offensively, the running game has been very effective and Brady has been clicking with his receivers, especially Gabriel in particular. Reche Caldwell took a vicious lick at one point in the game. It was scary to watch and I was afraid he might have been seriously injured, but, he got up and is back in the game.

Also of note, Troy Brown is back to playing on defense. He should get some kind of award.

I've got my Tom Brady jersey on and the Lucky Patriots Mug is in full effect. That's a good lead in to tell you to check out my story over on Faster Than The World. It's all about insane rituals and superstitions.

Its' 24-13 Pats at the start of the 4th. I've even gotten my Wife to take one of my touchdown runs for me because I was holding the baby at the time and could not go. (I run around my house when the Pats score a TD. Why? Because I am a maniac.)

Lets hang on for 15 min of football Patriots!


Technorati Tags:

Pats / Bengals: 1st Q

The 1st quarter of this game has been scary for the Patriots. The Bengals seem to be able to move the ball up and down the field, almost at will. The bright spot has been that the defense has been able to hold Cincy to field goals. 6-0, Cincy.

Offensively, I thought the Patriots first drive looked good, except for the scary almost fumble by Faulk. The running game was moving the ball. Then The Pats decided to try and go for the big gainer on 3rd down instead of giving it back to their running backs. Result: incomplete. Punt. The Pats need to work the running game and keep Cincy's offense off the field. I hope they will quit trying to go for the home-run and just grind it down the field, with the running game and quick passes, like it's looks like they've been capable of doing...

The Pats need to take care of the ball too. Faulk almost fumbled it away on the 1st drive and the 2nd drive ended with an interception, not Tom Brady's fault, as it was tipped, but that does not mean Cincy has to give the ball back...

That's my armchair quarterback opinion for the 1st quarter. Time for the Pats to get their attitude going in the 2nd.

Technorati Tags:

Another rainy Sunday...

It's another rainy Sunday here so I've been stuck inside, looking out the windows at the wetness, thinking about all the jobs I have to do outside. Oh well, what are you gonna do?

My kids are watching a movie and my Wife is painting the stairway that leads to the basement. I got it all sanded down last week, now it's her turn. She does the detail work.

I've been watching a little bit of the Jets / Colts game. It's a rare event, but I'm actually rooting for the Jets in this one. I have a strong dislike for Peyton Manning and even though the Jets are a division rival, I think a Colts loss would provide more benefit to The Patriots, as far as future playoff implications go.

One thing I have noticed so far this football season, that has kind of been bugging me, is the officiating in the games. I feel like the games are way too over-officiated right now. I feel like it has gotten to the point where the officials are now getting in the way of the game being played. I am not just talking about The Patriots games I've watched either. I'm seeing it all over the place. I've seen it just today in the Jets / Colts game. The slightest amount of contact by a Defensive Back on a Receiver seems to end up with a flag getting thrown for pass interference.

I know the rules in the NFL are skewed toward the offense, but come on, are teams no longer allowed to play defense anymore? Are you still allowed to try and stop a receiver from catching the ball? I thought football was a contact sport, but I'm seeing tons of rouging the passer calls, illegal contact calls, unnecessary roughness, etc etc.

Guys, it's football. People get hit in football. That is what the game is all about. The refs need to let the players play the game and get the hell out of the way with their damn yellow laundry.

Pats / Bengals at 4 o'clock. This game has me a little nervous. The Bengals are a good team and The Pats will have their hands full in this one. Tom Brady does not usually have bad back-to-back games and hopefully another week with his new receivers, as well as focusing on cleaning up the mistakes in the passing game will pay off. Hopefully the running game will get back on track this week as well.

Defensively, well, you know the drill. Stop the run and make them go to the air. Of course, as usual, half of our secondary seems to be injured, but isn't that the way it always seems to be for The Pats? At least now, after all the injuries this team has had in the secondary the last few years, the players that are coming in as replacements, like Hank Poteat, are practically regulars at this point, so hopefully there won't be too much of a drop off.

I used the word 'hopefully' a lot in those last few paragraphs, so how about one more. Hopefully The Pats will get the win today.


Technorati Tags: ,


Search 'mr.blackandwhite'

Photo Albums

Currently Reading

  • Anthony Swofford: Jarhead
    I am enjoying this book a great deal. It is brutally honest and at times, bitterly funny. An excellent, excellent book...

  • C.S. Forester: Hornblower During the Crisis
    A great book. Took less than a week to read it. Though the work is incomplete due to the passing of the author at the time it was being written, it remains a great story. There's nothing like a good tale of the sea and Hornblower always delivers.

Get to the Game!

Copyright info

  • Original Content © 2004-2006 Man King ☠

    All thoughts and opinions expressed on this blog / website are those of the author, unless otherwise stated, and in no way represent the thoughts and opinions of his employers or any other entities the author may be associated with.
    The author (that's me) makes no promises as to the accuracy, lucidity or logic of his posts.

    Thanks for reading :-)

  • DTOM Rattlesnake Design courtesy: store.gadsdenandculpeper.com
    Copyright 2004 Gadsden and Culpeper American Heritage Shoppe, Ltd.

  • Creative Commons License

How cool I'm not

Powered by TypePad