Sunday, November 25, 2012

The Legend of the Turkey Spider

Good Afternoon Ladies & Gentlemen,

Thanksgiving weekend is drawing to a bit of a close... so I thought I'd share what happened the past few days. Wednesday, I got outta work a few hours early, so I celebrated by going home & relaxing... and playing video games, cuz I'm a G. Thursday though... was Thanksgiving. I celebrating by meeting up with my ladyfriend Dizzy & meeting up at her aunt's house in Pinole... and her mama came to town, which is awesome... because I know she misses hers like I miss mine.

It was a full wonderful day of great people, great food, and even some decent football. There was SO much food... and even I got in the game & fried up some brined chicken legs (magnificent if I say so myself) but yeah, everybody was full of goodness by the end of the night. There was a lot of talk obviously about what we're thankful for... so I thought I'd share a few things:

1) My family - Love y'all madly...
2) My friends - Love y'all madly...
3) My health - I like being able to pee & poop right. It's definitely one of those things that you don't appreciate until it's gone... just ask your grandpa if you don't believe me.
4) Being able to provide for myself - I know my job isn't easy... but I enjoy the people that I work with... and the juice is definitely worth the squeeze... and you know what they say, if winning was easy, losers would do it.
5) My sense of humor - It gets me through some tough times... and has helped others too.
6) Sports - Because in today's society, very few people would be healthy if the only way you could exert yourself was running from large wild animals or jogging.
7) Living in 'Merica - Let's face it... if other countries were really better, you'd be living there, right? By the way, check back in with me in a few years when I'm living on a beach in Belize.
8) "Yes, I would like bacon on that..."
9) My imagination - Again, helped me through some tough times... and keeps my reality limber & exciting. Hopefully it'll also help me to provide for me & mine in the near future.
10) My sense of perspective - Otherwise I could really be a raging douchebag... and then how would I live with myself?
11) My blog readers - Yes... both of you...

Friday, Dizzy was supposed to work... but somehow there was a series of events that led her to call off... so we met up with the ladies again (mom & aunts) and we headed to a little 3-4 mile hike at Point Pinole. Here are some pictures...

Saturday, Dizzy had to work... so I basically stayed at home & watched college football on Rivalry Weekend... and there were some great games. Apparently the National Championship is going to be Notre Dame versus the winner of the Alabama-Georgia game next week... and Ohio State finished undefeated but because of discounts on tattoos, they won't be a part of the bowl games, which I have no problem with. Why? Because I feel that getting a discount on tattoos or jerseys or whatever legitimizes the penalty? Of course not, but because something needed to be done about the stuff they couldn't prove... and frankly, since Urban Meyer left Utah, f**k him!!! Just kidding, he seems like a good guy... I really just hate when people say THE Ohio State University... seriously, you're a buckeye, keep it in perspective with your communications degree there, buddy.

Saturday night though was the evening with Richard Cheese & Lounge Against the Machine at Bimbo's 365 Club. The venue is great for that roaring 20's theme, but they pack a LOT of people into a very small space, that's really my main problem with the place. Although, the performers were amazing. There was a burlesque dancer Violetta... something. The warmup act was Project Pimento, who do a similar swingy, bossa nova rendition of popular hits... using an instrument known as a Theremin (pictured below). It gives a cool creepy sound like from those 50's space invader movies... but the other music is very nice like you're in the club scene from the Rocketeer or something with a lady singing in a seashell & her swanky backup band. Yup, I bought their albums.

Sir Cheese & the band were also absolutley amazing as well. He mentioned in a post this morning that he was actually battling a stomach illness & considered cancelling, but we're all glad that he didn't because the band was amazing & he didn't seem to have a single miscue... and it was an amazing solid two hours of performance & humor. We really enjoyed ourselves (of course Dizzy was with me). Kudos to you, Mr. Cheese!

Today, I'm watching the Red Zone Channel while typing this up... so I'm about to get back to it, just thought I'd share with you. Hope you're all having a great weekend everybody!!!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Not Taco Bell Material

Good Afternoon Ladies & Gentlemen,
Well… unfortunately Jackie D will not be joining the awesomeness this Thanksgiving weekend. She has had some last minute issues come up with work (yes, work) and was not able to make a triumphant return to the Bay Area… but I’m sure that we’ll beat the beat up some other time. We miss you here on the best coast. Hopefully you’ll have a little bit of fun wherever you spend Turkey Day. Anyway, enough about her… this is MY blog. Let’s see…
Saturday was spent with Dizzy, and we had some breakfast pizza at CafĂ© Avellino (seriously, check out their breakfast pizza, it’s pretty good) and pretty much relaxed during the day, watched a little TV, she did a little homework, etc. Then as the sun set around 4 PM (really?), we headed out to North Beach for some dinner at Burgermeister followed by a live podcast of Adam Carolla from “The Man Show” & “Loveline” fame. I feel as though I should tell you ahead of time… that Dizzy really likes Adam Carolla… like, more than a friend. Obsessed? That may be a little much… but she really likes the guy. I do too… but I have a penis & the mentality that’ll make me a GREAT old man someday, so it makes sense. Here are some things that you may not know about the Aceman that I’m going to share with you:
  • His nickname is “Ace” or “The Aceman”. Did he give it to himself? Who cares? It works… and it’s also the name of his entertainment company.
  • His middle name is Lakers. Like… legally. There’s a funny story behind it… but I’m not going to bore you with it. Basically he was a smartass at the DMV one day & now it’s on all his legal documents. I hate the Lakers… but I have to admire the dedication. $teve Spurs Love? Not likely…
  • He wrote, produced & starred in a straight-to-DVD movie called “The Hammer” which I highly recommend
  • He’s also written a few books (which I’ve also read, I know, shocking, I’m literate) entitled “In Fifty Years, We’ll All Be Chicks” & “Not Taco Bell Material” that are basically a collection of rants & interesting points of view, not unlike this blog
  • He has his own booze (ala Jay-Z) called Mangria, which is basically a combination of vodka, red wine & a splash of juice. I’ve made my own mixture & it’s potent as hell… but his mass produced version is 12.5% alcohol. Still not horrible though… and effective
  • He’s basically a great handyman, cook & laborer by trade… who just also happens to be a comedian / philosopher / conglomerate & is the host of one of the biggest podcasts in the world. Congrats playa!
Anyway, because I’m the greatest gentleman friend ever, Dizzy & I sat front row center… basically at stool & taint level with Mr. Carolla & his guests Allison Rosen and Peter Wolf. Oh yes… I’m that guy… putting all other guys to shame. The show was good, lots of laughs, and of course… met up with Ace after the show…

Last week I watched “The Raven” starring John Cusack as the great American writer Edgar Allen Poe… or at least a variation of him, but he pulled it off well. There is a MURDERER in Baltimore… a serial killer if you will… and he or she (I’m an equal opportunity detective… like Batman) is killing them in manners similar to the writings of Mr. Poe. Of course, Edgar, like most artists, is basically a broke addict who can’t seem to get any recognition for his great works until he’s dead… but alas his expertise is requested by the local magistrate to help find this killer. Then it gets personal as the killer is leaving devious, cunning messages (I guess) and then (spoiler) kidnaps his girlfriend (Alice Eve). The movie wasn’t too bad. I enjoyed it. Some parts were a little cheesy & other a little unnecessary… and a few times, Batgirl & I were really confused because… maybe there was a deleted scene that had important information as to why something was? Still… give it a shot if you like “From Hell” or “Sherlock Holmes” because it’s kind of in that same vein.

Thursday night, I finally watched the long awaited prequel to the Alien quadrilogy “Prometheus” starring Noomi Rapace, Charlize Theron, Michael Fassbender & Guy Pearce (as an incredibly old man in probably the most questionable yet awesome casting call ever). The story is set that archeologists in the 2090’s discover various cave drawings around the world that point towards celestial beings in a distant star system inviting us to their planet. After years in hypersleep travel, scientists, archeologists, robots, grunts & investors alike arrive at the destination hoping to meet these celestial beings & find answers to the existence of life, faith, blah blah blah… basically they really just want to see some badass aliens like the viewers do, am I right? Okay… so from their arrival… it gets really weird… and I’ll just leave you at that… and it’s pretty awesome. That being said… this too was a movie where… you just kinda don’t want to ask too many questions because… well, you know… it’s only going to frustrate you. It’s like “The Dark Knight Rises” where the more you really think about it… it’s just going to make your movie watching experience that much worse. Just enjoy the flick… and I think you’ll know the parts that I’m talking about when you watch it… but I’m not spoiling anything for you. WATCH IT NOW!!!
Anyway, that'll do it for this entry. Have a great Turkey Day everybody!!! May food & football & thankfulness fill your soul!!!

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Soccer Gets Interesting

Good Afternoon Ladies & Gentlemen,
The countdown to the holidays has officially begun. Halloween was awesome… and now we are well into the month of November with Thanksgiving next week. So many big events coming up though.
Saturday, Dizzy & I are going to see Adam Lakers Carolla do a live podcast… and we got front row tickets. Dizzy is kind of obsessed with him… and it might be wearing off on me a little bit, but I’m a G, so I hooked her up. What I’m assuming will happen is we go see the show, laugh our asses off, meet him afterwards when he’s selling his swag, have him sign a few books, maybe a bottle of Mangria, invite him & his buddies over to watch football on my WALL OF AWESOME Sunday, have the time of our lives getting sh*t-faced with “The Hammer” over bacon and beer induced goodness & he basically invites us out to LA to watch the Super Bowl with him & Jimmy Kimmel. “Can’t do, Adam… cuz I’m going to be AT the Super Bowl.” “DAMN! You roll hard! I understand though… anytime you’re in LA, mi casa es su casa, $teve!” “Likewise. See ya around playa!” New best friends. You know… the typical thing that happens at these shows, right? I’ll keep you posted.

Next week, Jackie D is finally making her triumphant return to the Bay Area for her birthday trip! You remember Vegas last year, right? Good… cuz I don’t recall much. What happened? Anyway, she’s going to come out for a few days… and we honestly really don’t even have anything planned per se… but sh*t always gets fun when Jackie D & Mookie Love are in the same city. BALL SO HARD!!!
Next Saturday, Dizzy & I are going to see Sir Richard Cheese & Lounge Against the Machine live & on stage at Bimbo’s. This is Dizzy’s first time seeing the Cheese… and will be my 3rd. I also kind of get her obsessed on his swankified awesomeness… so it’ll be good for all. If you haven’t seen him in concert yet… go check it out if you can. Warning: He doesn’t do many shows… but at least check out his music & see if it’s worth the trip. It was when the Wingman & I went to Vegas!!!
After that, it’ll basically get into the time I should start thinking about getting presents for people for Christmas. At times like this, I wish I was crafty… or could get away with making pictures with macaroni & glue like I did back in the day. Instead, I have to be both thoughtful AND loaded to get good gifts. I also tend to give away a lot more (and better) gifts than I get in return… but that may just be because I’m a f**king sucker & put too much thought in it. Maybe this year will be the year of the Starbucks card… or the Christmas card with a picture of me & the family (me with no shirt on). Oh, I’ve got a few good ones already taken care of… but there’s still a few to go. Oh well, I’ll figure it out… or I won’t. See how dedicated I am? HAPPY HOLIDAYS!!!
You know… it’s been a while since I blessed you guys with some news… so let’s talk about strippers!
Tits of Tots! – So… this morning, I got an email from one of my favorite websites which is where I get a lot of info about some of the cool festivals & activities that you get to hear me blabber on about on this blog. I’m strolling through their weekly update… and I see something that… I have to read several times to make sure that I’m reading it correctly & it’s not some early morning grogginess. Basically, there’s a gentlemen’s club in SOMA called The Gold Club… and tonight, they’re offering an open bar & hors d’ouevres from 8 PM to 10 PM… and when you donate a children’s toy, you’ll receive a complimentary lapdance from one of the lovely ho ho hoes. Now, there is the stipulation that each toy must be valued at about $20 (so no showing up with a bunch of crap you bought at Chinatown for a dollar to exchange), but I think this… is basically one of the greatest holiday ideas EVER!!! Think about it… the patrons are receiving the human contact that they so desperately desire, the girls are providing a service to the community to help needy children enjoy their Christmas, the owners are getting a nice tax write-off on their establishment, since they’re not considered an establishment of the arts (though several people are taking that to the Supreme Court). Everybody wins! That’s not the only way that strippers are continuing to save the world either…
FINALLY! Soccer can be interesting! - Greeks are giving the oldest profession a whole new meaning to love of the game. Players on a cash-strapped soccer team now wear pink practice jerseys with the logos "Villa Erotica" and "Soula's House of History," two bordellos it recruited as sponsors after drastic government spending cuts in Greece left the country's sports clubs facing ruin. By the way, if you don’t know just how bad the economy is in Greece, please do yourself a favor and read a few articles about it. It’s pretty horrible. Anyway, other teams have also turned to unconventional financing. One has a deal with a local funeral home and others have wooed kebab shops, a jam factory and producers of Greece's trademark feta cheese. Yes, these sponsors run from the hilarious to borderline racist… but the amateur Voukefalas club - whose players include pizza delivery guys, students, waiters and a bartender (I smell a sitcom) - has raised eyebrows with its flamboyant sponsorship choice. "Unfortunately, amateur football has been abandoned by almost everyone," said Yiannis Batziolas, the club's youthful chairman, who also runs a travel agency AND is the team's backup goalkeeper. "It's a question of survival." Prostitution is legal in Greece, where brothels operate under strict guidelines (as they should be). Though garish neon signs advertising their services are tolerated, the soccer sponsorship has ruffled some feathers in the sports-mad city of Larissa. League organizers have banned the pink jerseys during games, saying the deal violates "the sporting ideal" and is inappropriate for underage fans (who pay half price for tickets & don’t help beer sales anyway, so f**k em!). Batziolas acknowledges the sponsorship took his team by surprise. "They didn't believe it in the beginning. But when they saw the shirts printed, they thought it was funny." Near-bankrupt Greece is struggling to meet creditors' relentless demands to slash spending and keep the euro as its currency. As Greece heads toward a sixth year of recession, drastic budget cuts have hammered many ordinary people: Retirees have been left to cover their own medical expenses, children have lost school bus services, and sports teams have scrambled to find sponsors as businesses close under the burden of emergency taxes.
Brothel owner Soula Alevridou, the team's new benefactor, has already paid more $1,312 for players to wear her jerseys (yes… her… the madame of the House of History). The team is appealing the game ban, but that doesn't worry the 67-year-old Alevridou, who says she's only in it because she loves soccer… and the pimp game. "It's not the kind of business that needs promotion," she said, dressed all in white and flanked by two young women in dark leggings at a recent game. "It's a word-of-mouth kind of thing." Her businesses, plushly decorated pastel-colored bungalows where 14 women are employed, have weathered the country's financial disaster far better than most, and she readily acknowledges her success. "If we don't help our scientists and athletes, where will we be? Greece has educated people, cultured people and good athletes. It's better to help them than take our money to Switzerland." Alevridou watched in disappointment as her team lost its fourth straight game, 1-0, despite her promise to players of "a special time" at her businesses if they won. "There's a lot still missing. We have no midfield," said Alevridou, a slightly built woman with a husky voice. "Many of our boys have jobs that keep them working at night… and if we have a game the following morning, they can't have a real presence on the pitch. ... They need more help." And unfortunately the “special time” probably wouldn’t help. They aren't the only team suffering. Greece's Amateur Athletics Federation suspended all its activities for several weeks earlier this year to protest funding cuts. And even the major soccer clubs sent most of their star players abroad this summer in the face of financial trouble and poor attendance, with fans no longer able to afford tickets. Government cuts have hurt most of the teams in the amateur league in Larissa - the majestically named Olympus, Hercules, Fearless and Sagittarius clubs, as well as Voukefalas, named after Alexander the Great's horse (really?). The impact of the crisis on sports is a major local concern. The town of 200,000 fielded the only professional club to ever break big-city domination of the league, winning the national championship in 1988. In 2007, Larissa FC also rebounded from bankruptcy for victory in the prestigious Greek Cup. Voukefalas says it needs about $13,120 a year to meet expenses, and Alevridou has promised more cash. "Here is where it all begins, with amateur sport. It's where the talent is bred. I am a Greek woman, and I love my country." She watched quietly, holding a cigarette and wearing a straw fedora with a leopard print band, as her team struggled. "The team will get better. I'm certain of it." By God, I love this woman’s passion! We should have more entrepreneurs like her! Can you imagine Larry Flynt being an owner of a professional football team? The Las Vegas Hustlers? Now, this is coming from a fan of Lingerie Football League AND the WNBA… but obviously for different reasons than you’re probably thinking… I like my sports. Sure, we’ve got mega bazillionaires that own most of the major sports teams… but what about all the struggling amateur leagues that just need a few grand for uniforms? What about a San Francisco semi-pro league with sponsors from Google to the Gold Club? Maybe I’ve found a new project…
Anyway, that’ll wrap it up for tonight. Looking forward to a fantastic week ahead… and I hope that you are too. Have a great night everybody!!!

Saturday, November 10, 2012

November Nonsense

Good Afternoon Ladies & Gentlemen,
Well, another week or two has come & gone… and yes, we won another softball game… actually a few... and ended up winning the championship... and yes, work was busy… and yes, I did not report my activities to you. My apologies… but here I am now. Friday night after work, I met up with my mama & stepdad for some Chinese food at R&G Lounge in Chinatown… then basically went to my apartment because the sun was going down & that means that the parents had to get home for bedtime. Sigh… it makes me feel old to know my parents are so old… but hey, they’re earned their rest & relaxation. My mom stayed up & watched horrible TV with me like “The League” and a new one we found called “Tattoo Nightmares.” Basically it’s about some of the best tattoo artists in the world who have clients come in with horrible tattoos that they need covered up with new ones… and you get to hear the stupid stories associated with how they got the bad ones. Fun fact: Almost all involve a combination of alcohol & stupidity, though not stupidity brought upon by alcohol. Anyway, it was pretty entertaining. It’s on Spike TV. Check it out.
Saturday, we went to Monterey to enjoy the Wharf, the 17 Mile Drive & the beautiful weather. Then the sun went down around 5 PM so they dropped me off at my hotel & they went to theirs. I wandered around Alvarado Street a bit but then decided to just go watch some great college football. Fun fact: It looks like there could very easily be SIX undefeated teams in college football at the end of the year. Alabama in the SEC, Kansas State in the Big 12, Oregon in the Pac 12, Louisville in the Big East, Notre Dame as an independent, and I think there was one other in a smaller conference… but still, let’s say five of them finish undefeated. They’re all major conferences (so you can’t pull the crap that they did with Utah, TCU & Boise State all the time). What then? Alabama & K-State in the championship? Why not Oregon? They’ve destroyed everybody they played. Notre Dame has the toughest schedule in college football every year… this year’s no different… why won’t they get a shot? You allegedly favor all those with tough schedules anyway, right? Eh, I’m not really concerned because it’s all BS anyway… and I’m sure a few will slip up against an “easy” opponent in their last 2-3 games, but still, it’s just interesting… maybe just to me. Good luck getting a consensus championship! Here are some pictures from during the day…
Sunday, Dizzy met up with us & we went out to Carmel to see the Mission and wander around the shops. We ate a nice Italian lunch at Little Napoli. Then we went to the monarch butterfly sanctuary around sunset…
After that, Dizzy & I drove home and started catching up on “Walking Dead” and “Black Dynamite” episodes. Rough weekend, right?
This week, I missed the softball championship because of a work related training about an hour away from the fields (and frankly, I think they did okay without me). The training was at The Ritz-Carlton, Half Moon Bay... and the weather was perfect at sunset... and we even had s'mores in the fire pit. Here are pictures...


Wednesday night, I got tickets to a premiere of the long-awaited “Lincoln” movie starring Daniel Day-Lewis as the Great Emancipator... and it's Steven Spielberg's latest that basically focuses on how he tried to pass the 13th Amendment (slavery abolishment) despite the great political & cultural oppositition at the time... and how he & his colleagues pulled it out. It was actually a very good movie & I thoroughly enjoyed it... and fun fact, Tommy Lee Jones & James Spader rock that sh*t too... and Sally Field... and even Joseph Gordon-Levitt briefly. I highly recommend going to check it out. I went with my roommate Batgirl (everybody else was working) but she seemed to enjoy it as well.
Other than that, not much else going on with me… got Assassin’s Creed III the other day but have only played about two hours worth so still in the tutorial stages, but so far so badass. Have a great day everybody!!!

Where Should I Go Next?