Tuesday, June 25, 2013
CHRISTMAS IS COMING!!!
Good Afternoon Ladies & Gentlemen,
This weekend was pretty laid back… Friday night was a party at one of Dizzy’s friend’s for her birthday… and it was Hawaiian luau themed… so we had a good time & I got to break out the Hawaiian shirts. I hadn’t really worn them in a few years. It was really good to catch up with some of Dizzy’s friends that were there. Saturday, we went to hang out with one of her aunts whose dog had been mauled by pitbulls a few days earlier. Don’t worry, I know pitbulls are adorable creatures who wouldn’t hurt a fly as Facebook keeps telling me… but then again, some of them aren’t… and if these pieces of sh*t (and/or their owners) end up as part of a Sesame Chicken special at Chef’s some time soon, then it’s all good… but until then, it’s not. Keep your pits on a f**king leash or I’m putting them on a f**king noose… in front of your kids. You’ve been warned!
Anyway, we watched the Giants game on TV and cracked a few beers… and her dog Casper is doing pretty good considering. He looks like a white furry Frankenstein (don’t worry, not going to show you pictures) but still a sweet puppy. After that, we headed over to some batting cages near Dizzy’s house. See, the softball season starts up again in a few weeks (TBD actually, but soon) and the only time that I get any batting practice in… is during the games. So we tried out this place near Clothing Broker in Jacuzzi Street… and it was pretty nice. We did about 40-50 swings each and after getting warmed up (literally, it was kind of a warm day & mugging in the cages) I started ripping them pretty good… so I’m excited for the new year with softball. We have a championship to defend after all.
That night, we watched “The Mayor of the Sunset Strip” about a guy named Rodney Bingenheimer who… from what I could tell… was basically a kind of groupie mastermind who just kinda popped up all over the Sunset Strip & hung out with rocks stars from about 1962 to the present. He went on tour with the Rolling Stones, Iggy Pop, David Bowie, helped them all get noticed & helped set the Rock & Roll scene in LA for a while… and along the way had a few interesting endeavors. The documentary has him & a lot of these rock stars reminiscing about old times & current times as he’s still a DJ with KROQ in LA but… times are always a changing (and according to Adam Carolla, KROQ is f**king retarded) but it was very interesting to me… and an interesting research project for a person. He seemed very… I don’t know… he just didn’t seem like he should be famous… but he is… and he also seems to be portrayed to have mommy issues but… then again, don’t we all? Anyway, give it a look. It was interesting.
Another documentary I watched on Netflix was “Knuckleball” starring the likes of R.A. Dickey, Tim Wakefield, Phil Niekro & some of the other men who carried on the “tradition” of this pitch that… from what I can tell, isn’t used very often in baseball… but when it is used, can be a VERY effective change of pace… or basically batting practice for the other team. It goes over the history, the stigma, and most interestingly the life stories & career paths of these pitchers. Basically, there’s really no such thing as a pure knuckleball pitcher. All of these guys went through high school, college & even the early pros as standard baseball players, whether pitching fastballs & curveballs… or in Wakefield’s case, he was a power hitting 1st baseman in college & that’s what he was drafted as. However, they ran into hard times once they got to the pros… and had to do something to keep their dream alive… and that was basically be a knuckleball pitcher & pray that a team would take a change on them… or go home & get a real job. Very interesting flick if you’re into sports.
What this movie made me think about was about versatile athletes & what they will do to play the games that they love. I mean… Tim Wakefield could’ve tried to stick to being a 1st baseman… and he probably would’ve been out of the league by 25… and he just retired about a year ago at the age of 46 with MILLIONS!!! It happens in basketball all the time too. Some player will be a hot shot scoring threat in high school & college… because he’s the biggest fish in that pond that’s UC-Irvine or wherever small college they play at. Then, when they make it to the pros, everybody in the league was that big fish… and most of them in bigger ponds… so if you’re trying to be the guy who takes every shot, then you’re not going to last too long at all. There can only be one, maybe two, once in a great while three guys who will put up serious scoring numbers day in & day out… and it takes more than just scoring to win a game. That’s when guys that are considered “specialists” like… shutdown defenders like Bruce Bowen, Raja Bell, Luol Deng and the like who play defense on the scoring stars & then on offense basically just pass around the system or hit corner threes or… the guys that used to come in basically to foul Shaq six times to send him to the free throw line or use their massive physiques to try to keep him & others out of the lane… yet on offense, if they didn’t rebound the ball, then they didn’t get it. Or facilitating point guards like “Muggsy” Bogues & Scott Skiles back in the day who basically had two jobs, dish out assists to other people… and don’t turn the ball over. They weren’t going to physically dominate anybody… but with smart play combined with their teamwork, they had wonderful careers. The great Manute Bol who would block shots, rebound… and on offense, just stand out of the way on the 3 point line & once in a while when the shot clock was running down, they’d bail it to him & he’d heave it up awkwardly & fairly accurately. The poetic Adonal Foyle, who went from among the leading scorers in college to just playing defense & writing prose for over a decade in the NBA. Many similar stories… but all pretty interesting in their own way. Which leads me to Thursday night…
Basketball’s Christmas on Thursday!!! Looking at this year’s draft class, there seems like there may be a LOT of players that are these kind of role fillers. Not really superstars… maybe one or two have the potential… but still looks like it could be a great group of various talents coming into the league for next year. However, I’ll wait until Friday or something to elaborate on some of these players & how they’ll fit with the teams that drafted them. There’s always trades & stuff going on to so… we’ll see.
NBA 2K13 Update: So… at one point, the Milwaukee Bucks were 14-11… then Monta Ellis (ball hog) got hurt & I stepped into the starting lineup legitimately… and then we won 15 games in a row… and now we’re sitting at something like 38-14 & within a game of the best record in the league. I’m starting to get the hang of the game… and have basically decided that it punishes you for trying to do everything (though seriously, if anybody else on my team would play some f**king defense it’d be sweet) but I’m hitting free throws from time to time now, learning the defensive quirks, basically doing great all around games & I’ve got a PER of well over 30 now. Monta’s back now… which means that I’m only going to get about 8 shots per game between him & Brandon Jennings throwing up anything without passing once… but hey, as long as those 8 shots go in, that’ll do just fine.
Lastly, the people who interviewed for roommates over the past few weeks have all bailed… but there’s another guy that I met last night who seems pretty legit & may be moving in next week. We’ll call him K-Dogg. He’s in his mid-20’s, born & raised in Korea, but speaks probably better English than I do, very nice, has a degree in Engineering & Economics, great job that takes him around the world… so yeah, hopefully he passes the background check (caught more than you would think) and he’ll be the newest roommate for a bit. Anyway, that’ll do it for tonight.