Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Happy Halloween

One of my favorite "Treehouse Of Horror" segments from the classic Simpsons' Halloween episodes is "The Shinning".

Obviously, this clip is ten times funnier if you've seen The Shining, but even if you haven't, it's still a treat on Halloween, or anytime.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

I Dream Of Cameron

I've always been fascinated with dreams. Usually, it's the small, silly stuff in dreams that intrigue me most. We've all had strange dreams before, but isn't it the minor throwaway details that always have you wondering the next morning, "what was the significance of that?"

For example, I had a dream years ago that included me having to urinate. The strange thing was, it happened in a long hallway, in the open, with urinals lined up along one wall. As I got to the urinal, i was only able to reach it if I stood on my tippy-toes. What did that mean? I prefer to think it was just some randon quirk of the dream, and not some sort of indication of "shortcomings" in my manhood.

I think the only reason I'm posting about my dream that featured Cameron Diaz from the other night is so that I have an excuse to get some pictures of her on the blog. I've always had a thing for her. Cute as hell, great body, funny, and she just seems like she'd be a great chick to have a beer with. She wouldn't roll her eyes if you told her you wanted to go to a bar and watch the game. She'd throw on a cap or jersey of the team you root for and go with you.

Plus, she's one of the few women that can wear her hair real short and make it work. It doesn't work for everyone. What's the percentage of good looking women with long hair that would remain as attractive if they got it cut real short? 10%? 20%? 3%? I think Diaz's hair almost looks better short. That's saying a lot.

But enough fawning.

The dream consisted of Cameron, me, my brother, and a group of other people that I don't remember at someone's house. We were all asleep, and it was almost daylight. Just then, I heard some thunder as a storm started to move in. I got out of bed and walked over to a couch near the window. Also joining me on the couch, Cameron Diaz.

Now, I wasn't surprised to see her. In the dream, I guess I knew she was there all along, but at the same time, I was a bit star-struck. As we both looked out at the incoming storm, she seemed concerned, so I held her hand. She didn't object, and all of a sudden I'm thinking, "I'm holding hands with Cameron-frikkin-Diaz!"

I pointed to the sky and a really dark cloud that was producing visible rainfall. As it approached -- and this is where the dream really turneded a bit bizarre -- the bottoms of the clouds started to change shape, and emerging from the clouds were several jet planes.

The planes started dive bombing the ground nearby. It was odd that they were doing that to begin with, but even more odd that they weren't targeting anyone. THey were just diving into the ground. A misguided kamikaze assault? Who knew. Hey, it was a dream -- anything goes.

Sensing danger, I turned around and yelled, "Get Down! Get Down!" Cameron and I headed for the floor. It dawned on me that this could be the last few seconds of my life, so I called over to Cameron to come over closer to me, which she did, and we were holding each other. I'm sure she felt safe by my overpowering 5'8", 160 lb. frame.

In fact, I think she's taller than me. Ah, who cared. I was in an embrace with Cameron Diaz!

And yes, I realize my wife is nowhere to be found in this dream, and if you're reading this, honey, remember the rule of dreams, which was stated above...

"Hey it was a dream -- anything goes."

So, the assault of the misguided planes comes to an end, Cameron and I start to get up, and after we looked at each other for a few seconds, she leans in to give me a kiss, before pulling away. I think I countered by saying, "Please?!"


After a few seonds of awkward silence, she asked if I could check on her daughter in the other room. Being a nice guy, I said yes. I guess the fact that she doesn't have a daughter mattered much in the dream. Anything goes.

I checked on her, she was fine. There was a dog in the room -- another random occurence that makes dreams so much fun to analyze.

As I came back to the room with Cameron, more people were now awake and milling about. I sat back down on the couch next to her and said, "that thing that almost happened between us that something that could possibly happen in the future?"

She just shook her head "no".

It was at that moment that I woke up. Maybe my mind decided that there was nothing of pleasure left to squeeze out of this dream, so it was wakey wakey time.

After I awoke, I actually spent about 20 seconds thinking to myself, "damnit, I just blew it with Cameron Diaz!"

But then I came to, realized that it was all just a dream, and -- even more foolishly -- thought to myself, "wait a minute, it was just a dream! Cameron doesn't know anything about this! I still may have a chance!"

Of course, this is the internet, and who knows, she may actually read this. If that's the case, maybe I really should say, "please".

Hey, it's a dream. Anything goes, right?

Monday, October 29, 2007

Football Game Ends With 15 Laterals

Since I do broadcasts of high school football games as part of my radio gig, as I was watching this crazy play unfold from over the weekend, I was naturally paying almost as much attention to the call of the play than the play itself.

Of course the play was unbelievable, and the call of the play wasn't bad, either.

You can never plan for a play like this. If and when it happens, you just have to do the best you can, and hope you get it right, because I'm sure it dawned on this dude's mind that the clip would be played all over the country.

The key -- and he does a pretty good job of this -- is to stay in control as the zaniness unfolds. Notice how he doesn't really start to go too crazy until it's clear that the last lateral is going to lead to the game winning touchdown. Even the color commentator keeps quiet until those final few seconds. It would have been easy for either of them to start to go ballistic prematurely.

Premature speculation? Premature prognostication? Proclamation? It's a problem suffered by many broadcasters. Men, mostly.

I'll work on that phrase.

What makes it tough is that there's no way to anticipate the progression of the play. You have no idea when the next lateral attempt will be made, or who it's going to. Plus, it's such an improbable play that the natural thing to do would be to anticipate the pending tackle -- which of course never comes.

All of the hyperbole after the play is fine, too. This is the biggest athletic moment any of these kids will ever be involved in, and most likely for these broadcasters, too, and his comment about it being possibly the "most sensational, incredible ending...the most miraculous plays in all of football history" isn't that far off the mark.

I can't fault these guys too much with their call, especially because I have no idea how it would have sounded if I was doing the broadcast.

But you can bet your bippy that I'll be thinking about this play at my game this Saturday.

It's hard to watch this play and not think of two other crazy finishes from "football history"...

"The Play" - Cal vs. Stanford. Classic call by Joe Starkey, the uncle of our very own Jay Capron -- the news director at my radio station.

1994 Texas High School comeback - This one is about 4:30 long, but it's worth it. The trailing team was down 41-17 with about three minutes to go, and you can figure out the rest.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Scrubs Returns

The 7th and final season of Scrubs debuts tonight, so enjoy the show while you can. The under appreciated, low-rated gem has delivered zany laughs since the very first episode.

Here are a few classic clips from previous seasons...

Turk's "Poison" dance

"More Than A Feeling" Air Band

"Guy Love"

"Sanford And Son"

Let's Dance

The Two Sides Of Dr. Kelso

"Kung-Fu Fighting"

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

The Top American Roller Coasters

Even though the amusement park season is just about over here in the midwest, it's never a bad time to talk about roller coasters. Maybe this post will help you plan a trip somewhere in 2008.

I found this website that not only lists the top 56 coasters in the U.S., but each one comes with a handy youtube clip that shows you the ride. Granted, watching a video is nothing like experiencing the real thing, but these give you a pretty good idea what these thrill rides are like.

Pre-tty, pre-tty, pre-tty good.

I've been telling my wife for several years that I want to go to Cedar Point for a vacation one year -- or at least a long weekend.

After checking out this list -- which features Cedar Point coasters in the first group -- I'm already looking at accomodations for next year.

But, as great as this list is, they left off one of my all-time favorite coasters. It must have been number 57 and just missed the list.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Bill Maher Kicks Out Protesters

Friday night during his live HBO show Real Time, Bill Maher, along with the help of security, kicked out several protesters that were in the audience. It was great television, and Maher handled it perfectly.

The protestors were shouting about conspiracies surrounding 9/11 -- real topical stuff. Maher was calm while the first couple of things were shouted from the protesters, but after it continued, Maher stood up and yelled, wondering where security was. He then charged into the crowd to help escort one of the protesters, "Out. Out. Out!"

The clip is below, and just a warning, it contains several obscenities.

Granted, he probably waited until he saw security personnel already grabbing the guy to kick him out before he went into the crowd, and as he admitted in his online segment on, he's able to be so brave because there are metal detectors in use at his show tapings, I still thought it was a ballsy move, and a reminder of how much fun live, uncensored television can be.

I watch Bill every week, learn something each time, and get a healthy dose of laughs from things that are said on the show. His show is so consistently good, that I've almost forgiven him for his appearance in D.C. Cab.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Can I Trim Your Sideburns And Talk Your Ear Off?

Most times when I go to get my haircut, I just like to sit in the chair and relax. I'm not one to strike up big conversations with whomever is cutting my hair. It's nothing against the girls at the place I go, it's just how I am. If they talk, I'll answer, but most times I just want to zone out for the ten minutes it takes to craft my very low-maintenance 'do.

In fact, I usually close my eyes during the haircut. It's so relaxing, plus it keeps stray hairs out of my eyes. One time, even nodded off a bit in the chair. I woke up bald.


Part of the reason I don't like to talk too much, is that I usually get my haircut on weekday afternoons -- when most normal people are working -- so that inevitably brings up the question, "So, do you have the day off today?" I usually just say that I am taking a late lunch, or that I'm on a sales call, or that I'm a homeless, crack addict just killing time until my next fix down under the bridge.

I could tell them the truth -- that I work at a radio station from 5a - 1p, but then that opens up a whole can of "Oh, cool, what do you do?", and, "I've never heard of that station", and "Is the pay really as bad as they say in small-town radio?" I'm not ashamed of what I do, I just don't like talking about it that much.

I realize that they're just trying to be nice, act interested in their customer, help get a better tip, break up the monotony, etc. And, don't get me wrong, if they start talking to me, I always respond and do my best to keep up some halfway decent conversation.

In fact the other day when I got my haircut, oddly enough, I was the only one in the shop, and there was only one hair stylist visible. I felt like I was walking into a scene from a Cinemax: Friday After Dark movie, or a Penthouse Forum letter. Sadly, it ended up just being a cut.

As the cut was underway, maybe the silence in the otherwise empty shop was deafening. The stylist started talking to me -- thankfully it wasn't about my job -- and the discussion turned to IKEA, and her decorating plans for her apartment. Usually snooze city, right? But, I actually paid attention, and tried to offer my opinions where warranted ("Yeah, red and black colors in the living room really do make a statement!").

So what is your stance when it comes to conversing with your hair stylist? Do you like the mundane conversations about work, weather, and interior design, or do you prefer to risk baldness by closing your eyes and staying quiet?

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Kitchen Nightmares is coming back

I was very happy to read this morning that Fox has renewed Kitchen Nightmares for another season.

If you've read the blog for any length of time, or listened to my show, you know I'm a big Gordon Ramsay fan. Love the attitude, the bluntness, and the countless cries of, "Oh deeeaarrrr", "Oh noooooo", and, "What are you dooooooooing?" as he encounters boundless incompetence at each of the restaurants he tries to fix.

After having seen the British version of this show many times -- which is a little more subdued, is shot on film, which gives it a more documentary feel, and is more focused on food then workers -- I was a little nervous about seeing the U.S. version.

More accurately, nervous about the Fox version. The network certainly has a way of adding just enough sound effects, quick cutaways, cheesy narrating, and ramped up tension and drama to make most of their reality shows unwatchable. This is the same network that gave us My Big Fat Obnoxious Fiance several years ago.

Wait a minute. I actually watched that show. Oops.

Although the U.S. version of Nightmares is a bit changed from the British version (more frantic editing, focus on workers' relationships and drama, and shot on video), much of the original concept remains intact. Of course, the one thing that is constant, is Ramsay.

It doesn't matter that the basics of each episode are the same: A restaurant with very few customers, a lazy or inept chef/staff, and filthy conditions in the kitchen which lead Ramsay to clean the kitchen, change up the decor a bit, freshen up the menu with easier meals to make, with fresh ingredients, and happy customers coming through the doors. What makes the show so engaging is watching Ramsay interact with those he's trying to help.

There's still time to catch this season's episdoes which air on Wednesday nights. And, fortunately, there's plenty of time to catch future episodes.

As Fox's Mike Darnell said, ""I think this show is going to be on this network for a long time."

Bon appetit.

Here's the season teaser for Kitchen Nightmares to give you an idea what the show is like.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

This Chick Really Blows

Once in awhile, a clip comes along that is so painfully bad, so achingly cringe-worthy, so brilliantly horrendous, that you just want to get down on your hands and knees and thank Al Gore for inventing the internet.

After bouncing around the 'net Sunday, I found this gem. It's a pageant of some kind, apparently. This, I'm guessing, is the, umm, talent portion of the contest, featuring contestant Stacey Hedger.

I don't want to spoil it, so let's just throw out some key words...Star Wars, trumpet, Charlie Chaplin, and crickets (from the audience).

This will undoubtedly require multiple viewings.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Real Men Of Genius Spoof: Notre Dame Fans

We've talked on the show recently about the musical similarity between "Home" from Daughtry, and the music found in the classic Real Men Of Genius campaign from Bud Light.

Below is a spoof of those commercials with the topic being Notre Dame fans.

Given my disliking of the Notre Dame football program, their woefully inept season, plus the high quality of this clip, I couldn't resist posting it.

Monday, October 08, 2007

Rocky Mountain Low

That didn't take long, did it? The Phillies bowed out of the playoffs so fast, it makes their division championship clinching victory seem like it was a week ago.

Well, it was, but you get the idea.

My biggest fear heading into this postseason was that the Phillies would meet the Cubs in one of the playoff rounds, and lose. So much for that happening. At least I don't have to go through that weeklong Pepto Bismol diet.

And, yes, I'd rather have them lose in this first round, then win the round, but lose to the Cubs in the NLCS. And, yes, watching the Cubs get swept out of the first round helped ease my Phillies pain, but only a little.

The Rockies were just too tough. The Phils couldn't hit, couldn't pitch -- well enough -- and just weren't the better team. I've read a lot about how the Phils may have been playing tight, considering this was their first postseason in a long time, and for many players, their first playoff experience at the big league level. I'm not discounting that theory, but those same elements certainly didn't hurt the Rockies at all.

Oh well, like I said before the series started, I have nothing against the Rockies, and if they were to continue to move on, that would be fine. The more successful they are, maybe that makes the Phillies' season stand out a little more.

The interesting thing will be what they do to improve the team for next year. They need pitching, pitching, and then some pitching. Of course, so does every other team.

But, they've cleared a big hurdle by defeating the Mets and claiming the division, thanks to a torrid final three weeks of the season when they went 13-4 to edge out New York by one game. Maybe this season was necessary for the Phils -- a stepping stone to bigger success next year. Ahh yes, the dreaded phrase, "next year".

It's too bad they were only able to clear one hurdle (the Mets), and not the other (Clint) Hurdle.

In the meantime, please enjoy the final few minutes of the last professional sports championship for the city of Philadelphia...the 1983 76ers defeating Magic, Kareem, Jack Nicholson, and the Los Angeles Lakers.

Thursday, October 04, 2007

30 Rock Returns

Welcome back, 30 Rock. Although, I've only missed you for about three days. That's when I finished watching the episodes from the first season. Thanks to, I was able to catch all 21 shows, and it only took me about three weeks.

What would life be like without the internet?

This is one of those shows that, for whatever reason, did absolutely nothing for me when it premiered. I didn't watch it, and had no interest in it. But, as was the case with The Office, Friday Night Lights, Battlestar Galactica, and Heroes -- all shows that I initially ignored, only to catch up on all of them online -- after getting continued praise from critics, not to mention the Emmy for Best Comedy, I thought it was time to try 30 Rock.

Having access to free episodes on certainly didn't hurt, either.

I'm certainly glad I did. The show is smart and silly at the same time, has a very good cast -- including the irreplaceable Alec Baldwin -- and packs as many jokes into a half-hour as any show this side of Arrested Development.

Plus, I've always had a bit of a thing for Tina Fey. Smart, cute, funny, and showing a surprisingly frequent amount of cleavage as Liz Lemon.

If you haven't seen the show yet, and would like to catch up, well, my guess is NBC will pull the first season's episodes to make room for season two, which begins tonight.

My suggestion is to rent the DVD's of season one, and then once you've caught up, go to and check out season two.

I'm too lazy to go into in-depth discussion of the characters, or the premise. You can always go here to get a pretty good idea.

Also, here are a couple of clips from that deal with Liz Lemon's lackluster love life, and the brilliance of Jack Donaghy -- Baldwin's character.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Red October

Here's the top of the 9th inning, Sunday, as the Phillies clinched the National League's East Division title. The fact that the Mets' loss to Florida became a final during this inning is just icing on the cake.

Thousands of fans cheering away 14 years of frustration, plus having living legend Harry Kalas on the call isn't too shabby, either.

Rock(ies) On

From a competitive standpoint, I was rooting for San Diego to win the playoff game last night against Colorado. The Padres seem like a much easier foe for the Phillies, considering the injuries to their offense, and the fact that ace Jake Peavy pitched last night, and would only be available for one start in the five-game series.

But, now that the Rockies have made it -- thanks to an improbable, one-for-the-ages kind of game -- I'm ok with it. The Rockies and Phillies are pretty similar: Plenty of offense, so-so pitching, and no post season appearances in over a decade.

One other similarity is the way these two teams finished the season in order to get to the playoffs. The Phillies finished 13-4, while the Rockies have won 14 of their last 15 games. Two pretty evenly matched teams, and the Rockies are a team that I have no built up anger or frustration. There's very little history between the two squads, and frankly, I kind of like the team.

I've been to a couple of Rockies games, one at Mile High, and one at Coors Field. I actually kind of like the team, and I think we're in for some explosive games over the next week. I like Colorado as a place to vacation, I have no problem with Denver, and how can you go wrong with a Coors?

Side note: If you ever visit the Coors Brewery, just ask for the "short tour" and go right to the beer garden.

Besides, the Padres are boring. Any city that can boast a weather forecast of sunny and 75 degrees every day doesn't deserve to also celebrate a World Series winner.

That said, if you think Mets fans are having a hard time, Padres fans must be searching for a trolley to jump in front of, after coming so close to getting in. They were one strike away on Sunday, before blowing that game to the Brewers, and in last night's playoff game they took an 8-6 lead in the 13th inning, only to once again have Trevor Hoffman blow the game by giving up three runs in the bottom of the 13th.

I'm not sure where those rank in Bill Simmons' "Levels Of Losing" over on, but they have to fall somewhere between "This Can't Be Happening" and a "Stomach Punch".

So, bring on the Rockies. And, usually when a team knocks my team from the playoffs, no matter what sport, I continue to hate that team, hoping they lose their next game or series. That's part of the reason I actually rooted for the Cubs in 2003 to defeat the Marlins, who beat out the Phillies for the wildcard that year.

Well, if the Rockies were to defeat the Phils, I think I'm going to root for them to get to the World Series.

I think.

If nothing else, the Phillies should get a nice welcome from Rockies' fans, and grounds crew workers. Remember the tarp incident from July?

Monday, October 01, 2007

Muck The Fets!

I've done my fair share of criticizing the Philadelphia Phillies baseball team. But, after the way the last few seasons have brought the Phils close to the playoffs, only to come up short -- usually being eliminated in the last week of the year -- it's easy to see how I could have been so negative.

Friday night, the Phillies took the lead in the division for the first time this year, following Cole Hamels' brilliant pitching performance -- and yet another Mets loss -- but I didn't do a post about it because I still had that sinking feeling that they would relinquish that lead over the weekend.

Sure enough, after Saturday's games, the Mets and Phils were tied once again.

But, wouldn't you know it, this year apparently is different. The Phils actually pulled it off. They didn't choke, they didn't wilt under the pressure, they didn't repeat the close calls and near misses of recent years. The Phils caught, and passed the Mets, and won the NL East.

It couldn't have happened any better. Having the Mets blow a 7 game lead with just 17 games to go is such a wonderful development. Jimmy Rollins -- who may have secured the MVP award on Sunday -- said back in January that the Phillies were the team to beat in the NL East, and he and the Phils backed that up. Sure, the Mets played horrible baseball down the stretch, but it took a 13-4 finish by the Phillies to complete the comeback.

Muck the Fets, indeed.

Who knows, maybe this will be the year that the Phillies not only reach the playoffs, but win the whole damn thing. Of course, they could just as easily get swept out of the first round and have their season over by the weekend.

I'm sure that once the playoffs begin, my feelings may change, but, for now, just the fact that they were able to clinch at home, in front of 44,000 rabid, hungry fans, finishing off a truly amazing comeback against a hated rival has made this upcoming postseason gravy.

The Phillies have already won.

Ahh, who am I kidding? Go out and win the whole damn thing.

Just don't get bounced by the Cubs.