Friday, September 29, 2006

Rabbit Punch Caption Contest

Many people are scared of China. The Red Star is rising, and within the next two decades those emulating bastards will be a true global superpower, on equal footing with the United States. Interestingly, though, this time the world's also-rans will likely side with the fun- lovin' Commies over the Freedomers in the first great popularity contest of the new millenium.

Why the worry? There could be a war over the liberty of Chinese Taipei (or what the roundeyes call "Taiwan") and the rights to Chien-Ming Wang. We may see protective tariffs erected in the fight against cheap Chinese goods amid a backlash over the dismantling of the American manufacturing base. China's military build-up and refusal to properly deal with North Korea might send false signals of a rice-driven alliance, causing Washington to draw up battle plans.

But we've got nothing to be afraid of, folks. As long as the Chinese are hosting events like the fourth annual Animal Olympics, we're gonna be friends 'til the day we die. Shanghai is the place to be right now, the only spot on the globe that features a man dressed as a clown full-on boxing a marsupial. We should be scared of this? No, we should embrace our entrepreneurial friends and encourage them to beat up dogs too, because dogs suck.

"Since the Irwin estate won't let me box Steve's dead corpse, I guess I'll beat up on this frickin' kangaroo instead."

So what say you, Slackers? Got anything funny this morning? I surely don't, but I figured I'd turn to you for excitement on this Friday.

Slack Link of the Day: New! Wigs for babies! Holy hell, check this article out, the pictures alone will make you want a kid.

Slack Video of the Day: Male Restroom Etiquette, courtesy of The Sims and whoever put this brilliant thing together.

Slack Song of the Day: Six years ago this weekend, Donnie and I flew to Las Vegas for the first time ever, with no hotel room and no real plan. The popular rock band Phish was playing two shows at the Thomas & Mack, and like any two upper-middle class kids from the 'burbs, we just had to be there.

On our way into the 9/29 show, we noticed Kid Rock standing outside, just chillin' at the front of the line to get in. A few hours later, he joined the band for the last half hour of the show, and no matter what Phish Revisionists want to say now, he tore the roof off that place. You want to talk about instant energy? He came out and electrified the crowd with a stellar Walk This Way, a comedic Rapper's Delight and a kickass You Shook Me All Night Long, before coming back out with the boys for a We're An American Band encore.

The weekend itself was one of the most incredible experiences of my life, including but not limited to my first meeting with two of my musical idols. And while the 9/30 show stands out as the better of the two, I'll never forget that first night's show, being incredibly hopped up on all kind of club drugs and speed and probably horse tranquilizer wondering what the fuck was going on inside that packed house...is that fucking Kid Rock? Sure was. Only in Vegas.

Thursday, September 28, 2006

No, Where Have You Been Today?

I'm cooler than you. As such, I just returned from a private screening of the forthcoming Robin Williams vehicle Man of the Year.

Okay, so I'm not cooler than you. Not even close. But I did just spend two-plus hours out of the office viewing a free sneak preview of a solid flick. What did you do today? Make some unrequited cold calls? Collate some documents? Secretly jack the bird or flick the bean in the semi-private bathroom near the retarded girl's desk? I usually do that too, because it's kinda hot. But today, not so much. No, today was Ace's Impromptu Special Movie Day.

Here's a basic review, because I gots no time to play on the blogaroo right now (and if you don't know the plot already, just fuck yourself and look it up independently): Robin Williams does a great job, and he's pretty damn funny in this. The movie's full of typical RW humor, so if you don't like him, you probably won't enjoy it.

Lewis Black and Christopher Walken also star in this half-comedy, half-mystery, half-love story (three halves?), and they really make the film. The two of them are awesome, especially Walken, who is a fucking genius. Sadly, though, there's a dance scene in one of the early scenes in which a wheelchaired Walken does not participate.

Acclaimed Jew Barry Levinson directed this thing, and it rings very similar to his work on Wag the Dog. But this movie was missing one major component by comparison: the overwhleming crispness of David Mamet's screenwriting. And, really, the Laura Linney love affair/weirdly premised post-election mystery angle is a little too over the top -- they needed to downplay that a bit.

It was a tale of two movies: the freshly funny run-up to the election in which RW's Tom Dobbs skewers politicians and comedically searches for truth in politics, then the Evil Jeff Goldblum Hour when The Firm meets Love Story and everybody wished the projector would break and the theatre would combust with us inside.

Overall, though, it was an enjoyable experience, and I think it's definitely a movie youse all should see. There are some classic lines, and really, at this point I'd go see anything made with Chirstopher Walken's name attached. The man opens his mouth and my life gets better. No watches came from his ass in this one, but I'd still recommend the movie anyway.

Slack Video of the Day: Everyone should pee just a little bit in their pants today, in honor of Miles Davis, who died on this date 15 years ago. So, to properly honor the man that puts 99.99 percent of all musicians to shame, here's a pretty cool video of Miles & Co. playing a badass version of So What back in the late 1950s. If your bag is more electric Miles, then try this video from Vienna in 1973. They apparently always loved that motherfucker in Europe.

If you don't like black people, here's a video alternative...check out this wonder goal from Liverpool striker and giant beanpole Peter Crouch. Off a perfect cross from Soda Bread Stevie Finnan, the 7'5 Crouch plays a perfect scissor kick into the back of the net to make it 3-0 Reds over Galatasaray in yesterday's Champions League match.

Slack Song of the Day: Obviously, we'll go with a little Miles today -- from July 6, 1970 in Central Park, here's the Miles Septet in the Bitches Brew days backed by Keith Jarrett & Chick Corea, Dave Holland, Jack DeJohnette, Steve Grossman and Airto Moreira.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Return Of The Little Superstar

Friday afternoon I introduced you to the Little Superstar and showed you how he breaks it down. In our next installment, it's time to watch our diminutive badass of a friend fight the evildoers:



This li'l dude may be the greatest thing to ever happen to me. All praises be to The Inlaw for finding this part of the show...

Showtime At The Basra Apollo

Apparently there is a cadre of enemy combatants teaming with a gaggle of horribly unfunny comedians to cause trouble in Iraq:

"British and Iraqi troops set out Wednesday on an ambitious mission to pacify the southern city of Basra, root out its corrupt police and help the residents rebuild. Some 2,300 Iraqi army troops and 1,000 British soldiers are taking part in 'Operation Sinbad,' with another 2,000 British troops deployed in the surrounding area, said British forces spokesman Maj. Charlie Burbridge."

No word from the British government on whether or not the soldiers busted into terrorist hideouts screaming, "We here to partaaaaay."

Unrelated Soccer Quote of the Afternoon: From the Champions League Gamecast of the Liverpool v. Galatasaray fixture: "Alonso and Gerrard play it short before clipping a ball in aimed at the lanky frame of Crouch." At least they didn't call him a beanpole this time.

Loud Noises

Ohdearfuckingod, not a Terrell Owens suicide story. Ladies and gentlemen of Bristol, start your engines: 24-hour coverage calls...

In the end T.O. didn't kill himself, but he'll more than likely kill a whole slew of important stories on tonight's SportsCenter. The reeling St. Louis Cardinals are probably loving this suicide attempt.

Some people call 30-something pain pills a suicide attempt. Some just call that an awesome weekend. It's all about perspective, folks.

Slack Video of the Day: This one's specifically for the loyal flock of fellow jamband fluffers...ever wonder what moe.'s Plane Crash would sound like in Japanese (no mystery, it'd probably be called Prane Clash)? Well, here's a band from that lovable ol' Asian kingdom doing just that, as well as throwing down some Umphrey's McGee.

If the heady heady jams ain't yo' thing, check out this video of fans pelting rocks at Nickelback in Portugal, causing them to leave the stage after just the second song. Classic.

Slack Song of the Day: Just for Mr. Owens, here are a couple of tunes by the late Elliott Smith: Waltz #2, Everything Means Nothing To Me and Everybody Cares, Everybody Understands.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Where's Waldo? More Like, Where's DeShawn?

What's with all the Pale HighGrounders at the Superdome last night? How can ESPN show crowd shots of black people to garner sympathy ratings if they can't even find them? Maybe Reggie Bush doesn't care about black people, either.

But I'd like to issue a serious congratulations to the New Orleans Saints, which came out and energized the city with a merciless victory over a Falcons team that everybody loves this year. I kept thinking back to what it felt like being at Yankee Stadium for Game Five of the 2001 World Series after 9/11, and it really choked me up in a good way to know that people left that stadium feeling just a little bit better about themselves for however fleeting the moment.

That's all I got right now. I could relay an awesome coincidence about a cellist named Peter randomly playing Bach's G Major outside my apartment last night as I stood choked up from the pre-game intro and that flashback to 2001 (West Wing fans, that piece ring any bells?), but I'd rather self-nip that and try to demonstrate I'm not a complete babbling mess without a proper filter.

And because I gots me some work to do today, I will now bid you all a good day and hope you get to meet Jackee in your travels. Maaary!

Slack Link of the Day: More evidence for the America's Moving Backwards file: "Frisco [Texas] school trustees aren't renewing the contract of a veteran art teacher who was reprimanded because a student saw a nude sculpture during a museum visit." I hope for sanity's sake that there's a more justified reason for this ridiculous decision, that he molested some kid in the janitor's closet or something. I can only hope. Otherwise, eeesh.

Slack Video of the Day: That article put me in the mood to laugh, so this morning we turn to the comedy stylings of the late Mitch Hedberg: Enjoy this 11-minute video. I think Pringles' initial intention was to make tennis balls. But on the day that the rubber was supposed to show up, a big truckload of potatoes arrived. But Pringles is a laid back company. They said "Fuck it. Cut em up."

Slack Song of the Day: Let's throw down some of the ol' Lucious Bobby Dylan from the 1966 Royal Albert Hall concert -- Tell Me Momma, Baby Let Me Follow You Down, and Just Like Tom Thumb's Blues.

Monday, September 25, 2006

Gimme Shelter

Nothing says "Welcome Back to New Orleans" quite like everybody's favorite local bands rockin' Monday Night Foosball's return to the city. Ladies and gentlemen of The Big Easy, give it up for the homegrown performers you've been wading waiting more than a year to see perform: The Goo Goo Dolls, U2 and Green Day. Whoa.

It's been an exciting weekend of football, but one of the bigger emotional wrecks of a Monday night game awaits the nation this evening. For a preview, let's send it down to Keith Jackson, who's covering MNF for the first time in more than three decades:

"Whoooa boy, welcome back to the New Or-a-leans Superdome, where all kids 12 and under will have the fantastic option of being sexually assaulted in a dark corner of the employeeee bathrooooom. Tonight will surely be a reeeal intradivisional slobberknocker between the 2-0 Atlanta Falcons and the 2-0 New Or-a-leans, um, uh...Saints.

"Like the hurricane and subsequent flood, the Saints feature an innovative new air-n-ground attack in the form of free agent Drew Breeees and first-round pick Reggie Bush. Perhaps the most exciiiting and electric player in the league already, I've got it on good authority that Reggie is made out of old leather and hamstrings. And with Bush and Mike Vick running like heckfire all over the field, it'll actually feel and look like Katriiiina once again.

"I spoke with the coaches before the game, and tonight, it looks like the Saints' black cornerbacks will be doing their darndest to loot Vick's passing attack, while the team's white corners will be searching for interrrrceptions. And Saints fans are hoping the Falcons will be frantically looking for shelter inside the visiting lockerroom of the Rapedome after an early onslaught of pressure from the Saints' front seven. This one should have more bite than a mule named Chompers. And speaking of mules, there are folks down here stillll waaaitin' for their forty acres and a..."

Hey, whoa, thanks, Keith. We all look forward to this one tonight, especially those of us that need Mike Vick, Reggie Bush and John Carney to come through with even mediocre nights for a fantasy football victory. To the people of New Orleans, good luck showcasing the return of an American city to prominence, I mean that.

Hopefully you'll one day be all by yourselves on top again in corruption, teen pregnancy and complete unintelligibility.

News & Notes from the weekend
--Did anyone catch the newb NFL referee calling the Jets 28-20 win over Buffalo yesterday? After his first call, I said to the assembled crowd, "I feel racist just watching this guy." His first public announcement was followed up each time he turned on his mike with calls of "That n*gga be offsides" and "Muthafuckin' horse-collar? That shit's fuck up, yo."

But as it turned out, after we stopped talking over him every time, his first call featured more machismo than we had originally thought. Instead, he spoke more like a combination of Mike Tyson and the two gay dudes from In Living Color. See, folks, you really can't judge a book by its cover and first page. Three snaps in a zee formation.

--The Jets, incidentally, are now 2-1 and about to run over the Indy Colts in the Meadowlands next weekend. They've got this incredible Yards After Ccatch ability this year, as proven last week by the two long TD catches, and this week by Leon Washington's semi-breakout game. Washington only rushed for 25 yards and caught two balls for 52, but it seemed like he made at least 10 big plays for us yesterday. That boy can dance. I'm already enjoying this speedy little rookie from Florida State, where Leon probably majored in Gangbanging.

--Lukas and I ran the Beirut table on Saturday night at a rooftop party, retiring undefeated while we were on top like Rocky Marciano. We could have been called out for leaving the table, but I think we both wanted to mingle with the guests rather than annihilate them.

Drunk Mingling may have been a bad idea, though, as it led to this girl telling me something like "You are so smug it's ridiculous...it's endearing." I never knew my overwhelming smugness was charming, but I guess it is: Mark it down, fellas, smug is the new aloof. Some girls like it when you respond to "What do you do?" with "I work on racecars. No, actually I'm a cardiovascular resident at Stony Brook Hospital." It's, apparently, endearing.

Slack Link of the Day: You know all those car salesmen that declare war on high prices? How can you possibly differentiate yourself in such a crowd of price war mongerers, you ask? If you're Keith Dennis of Dennis Mitsubishi in Ohio, the answer is simple: by "launching a jihad on the automotive market." Dennis' ad says all employees "will be wearing burqas all weekend long" and "Friday is fatwa Friday, with free rubber swords for the kiddies." Awesome.

Slack Link of the Day II: What's more American than baseball and cocaine? Not much, really. So check out the All-Time MLB Cokehead Team over at The Phat Phree.

Slack Video of the Day: Speaking of New Orleans...lemme introduce to you, the soon-to-be-world-famous Crack Dance.

Slack Song of the Day: This morning, a StreamStash Two-for-Monday Hodgepodge Assortment of Tuneage: Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere & Cinnamon Girl (Neil Young), Runnin' With the Devil & Jamie's Cryin' (Van Halen), How High the Moon & Linger Awhile (Sarah Vaughn), Fire & Who'd She Coo? (Ohio Players).

Friday, September 22, 2006

Starting The Weekend Off Right

Surely this one needs no introduction of any kind...



Thanks to ChiptoleBob for forwarding over the greatest video in the entire annals of YouTube. Good god, man, this video is perfect...

Soon To Be Investigating The Anus

You know who totally belongs in federal prison? Those two amazingly talented investigative reporters from the San Francisco Chronicle that broke the BALCO story wide open and brought about serious social change for good. Those two, we should definitely lock them up for, say, 18 months or so. Just a brilliant idea.

Lance Williams and Mark Fainaru-Wada, you may be the only real sports journalists left with an ounce of integrity and superior skills, but you're not above the law. Nobody's above the law. Not even Steven Seagal. And he's fucking awesome. So unless youse guys each earn 8th-degree black belts in aikido between now and the appeal, you best be ready to cover the Salad Tossing with Jelly or Syrup championships.

Slack Link of the Day: For the first time ever, only billionaires populate the Forbes 400 List of Richest Americans. As expected, Bill Gates and Warren "Jimmy" Buffett are the top two wealthiest dudes with $100 billion between the two of them. As a whole, the top 400 richest hold a combined $1.25 trillion in wealth. That is fucking awesome. I've got like $9. Ten, tops.

Slack Video of the Day: Proving you can only win the raffle if you buy a ticket, Liverpool's Xabi Alonso scored a goal from 70 yards out in his own half in a 2-0 win against Newcastle the other day. Granted, the goalie stumbles to the ground as the ball comes towards him, but you have to give Xabi Alonso credit for the pace of the shot. Whether you're a soccer fan or not, check out the Liverpool midfielder's wicked goal from Wednesday. Also, the good folks at The Red Cauldron take a look at some of the best wonder goals ever scored.

Slack Song of the Day: For perhaps the first time ever on this here rag, I'm playing the part of Casey Kasem or Rick Dees (nuts). It's an all-request day here on Slack, and our buddy Alex over at The FYC wants to hear Strange Design by the popular rock band Phish. Al, enjoy your pebbles, this one's from 12/31/95.

For everyone that hates The Phish from Vermont, help yourself to a live version of The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway by Genesis and Radio GaGa by Queen. For no reason whatsoever.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Bucho's Nuclear Program

Finally, my status as news junky and entertainment sponge come together to make me the greatest casting director ever.

When they eventually make the television miniseries about the run-up to the war against Iran, is there anybody else on the short list to play Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad than character actor Joaquim de Almeida? Good God, these guys could be twins...

And if this miniseries doesn't include his classic line, "Hey, fuckheads! Does anybody know the fucking number to my fucking caaarrr?" from Desperado, I'm not watching. Talk about clear and present danger...

Another Sports Post? Eh, Kinda.

I'd like to take just a quick second to congratulate the New York Yank'ums on their ninth straight AL East title and 12th consecutive trip to the postseason.

Sure it's a double-digit lead over the excuse-riddled Sawx and dollar- appreciating Blue Jays, and a division title has been a foregone conclusion for weeks. But let us never forget that this team struggled mightily to find character and chemistry from February to August. Now they're hitting a serious stride, there's a feeling of determined superiority and unprecedented looseness in the NYY clubhouse, and I haven't been this excited about a Yanks squad since 2001.

With that little housekeeping out of the way, allow me to introduce my friend PEACE D (aptly named for signing off every e-mail like that). PEACE D is quite a character in general -- like the time he screamed "...so I'm just staring at this girl's sweaty ass" in a family restaurant next to a table full of kids -- but when he's got an especially funny story, look out for comedy gold.

Yesterday afternoon I got this e-mail in my inbox:

Some of you will appreciate this a lot (Ace in particular). I was walking like a madman home from Penn Station today, and all of sudden some dick slams into me. I look up and I realize who it is: ESPN's Dan Patrick. He gives me a dirty look and says, "Watch where you're fuckin' going."

I go, "Yeah why don't you fuck yourself, Dan?" He goes, "Who the fuck are you?" I go, "I'm Keith Olbermann and you're the catcher, have a nice day." He was so pissed and stormed off. Absolutely amazing moment in my life.


The best part of the story is that, if anything, it's probably under-exaggerated. Classic stuff, and even though I'm a Patrick fan, I hope he calls into Dan's radio show today and taunts him even more. Whiff this, buddy! PEACE D 1, ESPN Bastards 0.

Slack Link of the Day: Only one-quarter of the people polled by the New York Times and CBS News approve of the job Congress is doing, a number that's making many politicians sweat this close to the midterm elections. Yay, right? New government, right? Not so fast. It's not uncommon for most Americans to feel the general assembly sucks but their own guy ain't treating them so badly. Hence, 39 percent said they would re-elect their own representative, while 48 percent said it's time for change. That's well within the margin of error. Throw in the fact that re-districting has made it very difficult to unseat incumbents, and you've got two more years of the same of shit in Washington. The more things change...

Slack Video of the Day: Apparently there was some sort of article about Alex Rodriguez yesterday, apparently a lot of people saw it, and apparently a lot of people commented on it. You'd think there was something new here, but no, it's really just the same ol' shit. In any event, I thought the best part of the article was Tom Verducci's fantastic journalistic ability to get new quotes.

So John Kruk went off on A-Rod on last night's BBTN, and while he wasn't necessarily wrong in anything he said, the whole thing just seemed so forced, so fake. That led me to call his rant "more over-the-top than a Lincoln Hawk/Bull Hurley matchup" to some friends this morning, and I was met with this awesome clip from the movie of the final arm rasslin' event. Turn that hat around, Lincoln.

Slack Song of the Day: If you never bought The Name of This Band Is Talking Heads when it came out, you should probably fall down the stairs intentionally. If you want, of course, up to you. But don't fear, daddy's got some samples for you: Who Is It?, The Book I Read, The Girls Want To Be With The Girls, and Love > Building On Fire.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Goodnight, Champ

I'd like to bid a fond farewell to former New York Rangers enforcer Tie Domi, who officially retired from a sport called "hockey" last night. The guy was as tall as James Madison, but with Dolly's teeth, and he took on every other team's biggest fighter on a nightly basis.

I wrote on this here rag in November 2004: "I remember vividly in 1992 when the 22-year-old Domi challenged reigning league enforcer Bob Probert (a guy so mean he would punch your wife in the tits if given the chance, and maybe that's because his parents named him Robert Probert) to a fight immediately following a face-off. Despite giving up six inches, Domi ripped Probert's jersey straight over his head and pounded his face without so much as a hint of stopping. When the fight broke up, Probert was bloodied, and Domi skated off the face strapping an imaginary heavyweight belt around his waist. From that moment on, he was a Ranger, and a favorite at that."

So, in honor, I present the fight that made Domi a household name:



Domi was a fucking beast, and he'll forever have a place in the Garden and in the hearts of many New Yorkers. Here's a special YouTube tribute to that lovable stick-riding bastard. You the man, Tie.

Thai Coup Haiku

And now, the treasury of haiku to ease the tension, baby...

Bangkok martial law
You bloodless, but you sooo strong
Me love you long time

CNN reports: "There have been 17 coups in Thailand since World War II, and rumors of an 18th have been circulating around Bangkok in recent weeks as Thaksin battled considerable pressure to step down. This is the first coup since 1992, AP reported."

Eighteenth time's a charm
Last time we had this much fun
Dan and Dave blew goats

The AP reports
: "The United States on Wednesday urged Americans to reconsider any travel to Thailand while Britain told its citizens living there to stay in their homes, after the Thai military topped the country's prime minister in a coup."

Donald and Irene
The Fiedlers tie the ol' knot
So long, honeymoon!

Reuters reports: "The Thai army took control of Bangkok on Tuesday without a shot being fired, dismissed Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra, revoked the constitution and promised a swift return to democracy after political reforms."

To the coup's leaders,
Um, where has Beau Bridges gone?
That guy just vanished

Thank you, Laos, you've been a great audience...

Slack Link of the Day: Coach dug this one up from Blender, the 50 Worst Things Ever To Happen To Music. Number 50 is just about the dumbest thing I've ever read, but hey, who doesn't enjoy a good list? Many of you will enjoy Number 11. This one goes to 11.

Slack Plug of the Day: Hoobs sent this along from the mailing list of The State/Stella/Wet Hot American Summer: "After ten years of popular demand, The State is available again! The first season of the critically acclaimed 1993-95 MTV Series will be released on iTunes Music Store, starting Tuesday, September 26th. Depending on how many people download, MTV will release subsequent seasons, and then eventually, hopefully, a DVD."

Slack Video of the Day: Eh, this could have been so much better if the cameraman not had cerebral palsy and a case of the jimmy arms. But Henge found this cool clip of Russian hooligans meeting in a parking lot and exchanging blows before everyone starts running off at the end. It's more like Russian hugging than fighting, but I did make out one guy getting kicked in the head. That's cool.

Slack Song of the Day: Allright, so this is a video disguised as a song. You got me. But how could the SSOTD not be One Night in Bangkok after Chilly Jack's mention of Murray Head in yesterday's comments? It can't. So it is. Enjoy this one-hit wonder.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Merci, Thai Coup

If you were planning that child sex trip to Thailand this fall, you might want to re-route your travel plans. The military's in charge now.

Ten Hut...There's An Officer On Deck

This admittedly is less of a typical post and more of a public service announcement from the good people at Slack LaLane. If you didn't already do so last night, it's time to start taking Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip seriously. Aaron Sorkin is officially back.

Last night's pilot brilliantly set up the whole series, a behind-the-scenes look at a Saturday Night Live kind of variety show. And as I expected, Sorkin's banter hooked me from the get-go and reeled me in before the first commercial break. Now we're left to rejoice and welcome back the greatest monologue and dialogue screenwriter of the last two decades, the intelligent and witty visionary who brought us A Few Good Men, The American President, Malice, Sports Night, and the first four genius years of The West Wing.

After just one episode, it's clear, Studio 60 is the next great Aaron Sorkin-Thomas Schlamme project. In typical Sorkin fashion, the cast is a fast-talkin', quick-walkin' ensemble of attractive ladies and handsome fellers. But above all else, the show is shot beautifully. Really, there are serious film directors that can learn an awful lot about presentation by watching the cinematography of both this show and old episodes of The West Wing. I'm guessing the cameramen are the most underpaid people on the show.

Annoying Bossman Steven Weber and Christian Cast Member Sarah Paulson are classic over-actors and need to scale it back, but the rest of the cast is already falling into the perfection of their written roles. Matthew Perry and Bradley Whitford already have the chemistry it took Whitford and Rob Lowe a full season to build on The WW, and Amanda Peet is both sexy is hell and yet incredibly believable as the president of the network: She stole the show. Throw in DL Hughley, Timothy Poindexter Busfield, Nate Corddry, Judd Hirsch and Ed Asner, and you've got yourself a helluva television show with staying power.

Studio 60 is already smart, it's clever, it's well-produced and, best of all, it's poised to get better with each episode. So I'm guessing it'll be cancelled in a few weeks. Better watch it before that happens.

Slack Link of the Day: Arrrrr, ye bilge rats, today is International Talk Like a Pirate Day, and somewhere Peter Sarrrrsgaarrrrd is hiding out.

Slack Video of the Day: Here's a six-minute clip of Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip for those of youse that couldn't set your TiVos properly. And while I wish YouTube had a much better library of West Wing classics, I guess we gotta use what we gots. Here are a couple of old bits in honor of last night's debut: Parking Tickets, Changed Timezones, and Star Trek Geekery.

Slack Song of the Day: How 'bout we Hornsby it up today -- first let's see some Softer Bruce, then some Rockin' Bruce: Loser, Mandolin Rain, Tennessee Jed and The Way It Is.

Monday, September 18, 2006

Shotgun Willie

Here's a good one for your daily news consumption: Louisiana Police pulled over Willie Nelson's tour bus today and issued the redheaded stranger and four bandmates misdemeanor citations for drug possession.

Hmm, misdemeanor citations, must not have been that much on there: "During a search of the bus, Williams say approximately 1 1/2 pounds of marijuana and approximately 2/10 of a pound of mushrooms were located on the bus."

Willie, I've loved you since the moment I saw you. The guy carries 24 ounces of pot and three ounces of boomers on his fucking tour bus. And he walks away with a misdemeanor. You know how many condoms the police found on that bus? I don't know, Willie never uses 'em.

Idling

I feel like I either ate some bagged spinach this morning or have fallen into a bulemic coma, so I got nuthin' good for youse.

I'm sitting here wondering why my favorite teams and fantasy squads seem to lose much more than they win these days, and how ridiculous it is that there's no hardcore porn for HDTV yet. I'm questioning why I say "long story short" every four sentences, which ultimately only makes the thought that much longer, and whether I'm getting enough Riboflavin and Niacin in my diet. More Yoo-hoo? Yes'm.

I kinda want to know if the Pope's inflammatory comments about Islam lifts the heat off the Jews for a little while, or whether the Muslims burning Papal effigies this weekend have more simultaneous hatred than I ever imagined. Similarly, what's the deal with Big Gulps? I mean, can anyone possibly drink this much Mountain Dew? And have you seen Eli Manning's baseball and/or weiner?

At what point in my life can I retire, and is it in the next few weeks or months? What if I just hang out with Keith Jackson all day and take notes for him? What's that? "Whoa Nelly," you say! Who was made out of "old leather and hamstrings?" Duane Jarrett? Okay, I've got it down. I bet Keith smells like liniment oil, breast milk and turkey chili. But it'd be a good job, I suspect. We can even prank call Enberg. Oh my!

Ah fuck it, I'm just hitting "publish." I'm tired of this feckin' blog.

Slack Link of the Day: Those wacky guys over Deadspin found some Internets gold yesterday...a JibJab-esque video of Ricky Williams, Michael Irvin and Koren Robinson singing a catchy little ditty at a bar in rehab (direct link).

Slack Incorrect Link of the Day: So the Drudge Report finally picked up on the "Roger Waters is being mean to our president" story, a bit less than a week after I thought he would (Matt must be slipping with Republicans at the helm for so long).

He's got two e-mails from dear readers that take note of Waters' anti-Bush rhetoric, and he's even posted a picture of the pig that's tagged with the slogan "Vote Democrat." The only catch is that the pig's messages are old, and November 2nd -- the date on it -- is 2004's Election Day. You'd think a website that always does its level best to catch other people making mistakes would actually, ya know, catch something like that, no? Either way, click here if you missed my thoughts on this most excellent show.

Slack Video and Song of the Day: Ladies and gentleman, Widespread Panic is back.

That's right, the band that makes every Southern collegian gesticulate wildly while double fistin' col' beers next to a blonde girl in a sun dress has finally found its missing lead guitarist since Mikey Houser died.

I had no doubt the addition of former Aquarium Rescue Unit and Dead guitarist Jimmy Herring would be net positive for this core group in the midst of a four-year transition. But I never imagined how quickly Jimmy would mesh right into the fold. He's truly the perfect fit, a guy who respects the existing sound of the band but brings his own style to the proceedings. And if they sound like this after just three shows, I can't wait to hear them again in a year.

Panic is a real fun band to see live, but now for the first time in what for me was a long time, they're also pushing musical boundaries and creating some of the cooler shit out there. Plus, you can spend half the show wondering whether that's really Dave Schools on the bass or Horatio Sanz in an Enrico Palazzo Situation. Throw in some great seats, some good friends, a little vitamin e, a six-person Drums and access to a strange suite on Radio City's fifth floor and you've got yourself one solid evening. Widespread Panic 3.0, dig it.

So here's a video of Chilly Water from the show we saw on Saturday. And for the audio sodomy portion of the post, here's a link to Saturday's show (already). Also, from 12/30/99 in Atlanta, here's Christmas Katie, Arleen, Space Wrangler and Pusherman.

More WSP @ RCMH Pics: Some say it's Warren Haynes, but I think Jimmy Herring is the hardest working man in show business -- just look at this pic of Herring working security outside Radio City; here's a shot of the full band from our seats; Jimmy, John Keane & John Bell huddling up; Dave Schools rockin' out so hard I couldn't hold the camera still; RCMH's Roxy Suite; and free drinks in the Roxy Suite.

Friday, September 15, 2006

In The News

The day's top headline for Just One of the Guys fans:
Woman Pleads Guilty in Fake Penis Case

The day's top headline for libertarian masturbators:
Models' skinniness can't be regulated: French fashion official

The day's top headline for people who hate Chinese retards:
Beijing considers hospitalising mentally ill for Olympics

The day's top headline for African public defenders:
Murder suspect: Goat turned into corpse

And by the way, the last line of that goat murder article reads, "In 2001, eight people were burned to death after one person in their group was accused of making a bystander's penis magically disappear." See, kids, all it takes is one bad apple to make someone's penis disappear and the whole group is toast. Let this be a lesson...

Slack Song of the Afternoon: I've often said The Band's Chest Fever would make a ridiculous cover for any band out there. It may just be my favorite song ever and it's a glaring omission from the final cut of The Last Waltz. I got a late text message last night that Widespread Panic ended the show with it as the second encore, and of course I went seeking it out this morning: WSP taking my awesome advice.

This Week in Slack: Sexy Caption Contest, Half of Pink Floyd at MSG, Matsui Returns!, Sports on TV, Some Sort of 9/11 Anniversary.

Caption Contest

From the photo desk of ScottyB, have a go at this one here...

"She's no Materazzi, but I'm one second away from headbutting this chick right in the fucking tits."

What you got, folks? Obviously there's plenty to work with here...

Slack Link of the Day: Gawker's latest venture in its quest to take over the Internets is a rock music blog called Idolator. I, for one, welcome our new music blog overlords. So far the site looks like something I'll never actually click on voluntarily, but if it metamorphosizes into anything like its cousin Deadspin, I think it'll catch on pretty quickly. Good luck to them, I s'pose.

(And as a quick tease for youse, Gawker ain't the only one launching a music blog these days. Stay tuned for a big announcement from your very own Ace Cowboy on a new venture of his own in the coming weeks. Something major this way comes...)

Slack Video of the Day: Too soon? Good lord, Norm MacDonald stopped by The Daily Show last night and just laid down some Steve Irwin comedy gold on an unsuspecting audience. I really love Norm, one of the more underrated comedians of the 15 years. Mildred!

Slack Song of the Day: Rainy days always bring out the soul in me -- there really isn't anything better in this world than listening to some soul music while the precipitation precipitates. And since I feel like we ain't seen the sun in weeks in NYC, let's call up to the stage Ms. Aretha Franklin from the 1971 Montreux Jazz Festival, backed by the seriously solid King Curtis & The Kingpins. Seriously, this rocks.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

We Call It Riding The Gravy Train

"I looked it up, and apparently Dark Side of the Moon is a widely praised and popular album. Huh. Learn something new every day." --Don Fielder, 9/14/06

Just your typical Wednesday night in the city: the world's most famous arena filled with explosive pyrotechnics, great balls of fire, visually stimulating backdrops, floating life-sized astronauts, over-inflated pigs tagged with controversial slogans, more Republicans than Rebels, and the British Bill Maher with his 12-piece band playing a complete Dark Side of the Moon as the second set. All that's missing were whips, chains and Yo-Yos.

Every male goes through a hardcore Pink Floyd phase some time between the ages of 14 and 20. Many people have that Zeppelin phase, some have the Grateful Dead phase, even fewer have a Falco phase. But everyone remembers that night when you first heard Floyd's legendary concept album from start to finish and then ran naked through that dog park in Des Moines while high on stinky schwag and your friend's dad's bottle of Jameson. Everybody remembers, whether you got down and jacked off that dog or not.

Given that, it should come as no shock that last night's Roger Waters' show at Madison Square Garden was really fucking special. And I'm not talking solely about nostalgic appreciation; the music itself was truly incredible. Anticipatory urges had most fans looking forward to the second set, but the first featured some of the best shit of the night: In the Flesh, Mother, Set The Controls and a troika of Shine On You Crazy Diamond (complete with Clarence Clemons-type sax soloing), Have a Cigar and Wish You Were Here.

Perhaps the non-DSOTM highlight came late in the first set, when Waters launched into a brief pro-Arab introduction to his newest song and followed it up with a staunchly anti-Bush ditty about bombing innocent civilians. This marked the first time I've ever seen a performer booed and hissed in the hundreds of concerts I've attended (not counting the jaded vets at Coventry). The older couple next to us took off in a hurry and never came back. The guy in front of us with the Andy Reid moustache and Bass Pro Shops hat repeatedly flipped the bird and yelled profanities. The dude behind Lukas on Tuesday night screamed, "Liberalism is a disease" at the top of his lungs.

I can understand the apolitical folks that don't enjoy the preaching, but for those in opposition, are you even familiar with Pink Floyd's repertoire? I mean, really, what happened in between the time when Waters asked "Mother, should I trust the government?" to thunderous applause and this Leaving Beirut song? Did these right wingers think that first query was strictly a hypothetical? Apparently all the booing and hissing d-bags want their rock, but they don't want their boat rocked (thank you, thank you). I'll enjoy any song that makes 15,000 people as uncomfortable as possible.

The Dark Side set featured Floyd drummer Nick Mason, which may set up an epic cage mage between Waters and Mason against David Gilmour and Richard Wright, who played with Gilmour at Radio City at his most recent run here. And since Gilmour looks like the bruiser of the group and Waters the suave manager/"Mouth of the South" Jimmy Hart type, I think the fight will really come down to Mason and Wright. And it'll be one for the ages, bigger than the MegaPowers exploding and the break-up of The Rockers combined.

Waters still has it, both the voice and the bass skills. And compared to Jack the Bruce at the Cream reunion, he looked like...well, compared to Bruce he looked like anyone who's currently alive. He also has a great 10-piece band behind him (11 with Mason, Roger makes 12), but the key to the band is lead guitarist and possible Los Lonely Boy or Richie Sambora lookalike, Dave Kilminster. Believe it or not, this guy pulls off Gilmour's sound completely, far surpassing my expectations. If the not-so-inevitable Floyd reunion tour never materializes, Kilminster is probably as suitable a replacement as Waters will find outside the Arab world.

The show ended with a classic three-song encore. First Waters brought out about 20 kids from the Boys Club choir to shuffle their feet and belt out Another Brick in The Wall Part II, a scene that alone was worth the price of admission (and this was the only show on tour where he has done this). Then following the Vera filler, the band closed out the night with the most appropriate song for a fanbase that just witnessed greatness: Comfortably Numb. Cue the house lights, drive home safely, folks.

What's really great about the show is that you think you know what you're going to get when you walk through the turnstiles. But when some awesome and probably interchangeable black chick is belting out Great Gig in the Sky on stage at Madison Square Garden, with Waters and Mason pounding away, with a palpable buzz in the air, with huge screens behind and next to the stage enhancing the music, you just forget how wickedly blessed you are to be in that seat.

Sure, it ain't the full monty, but at least you're seeing some flesh.

Slack Mangled Quotation of the Night: Upon seeing the tagged pig with slogans like "Impeach Bush Now," Don exclaimed "Are they gonna send out an over-inflated raccoon with 'America Needs to Change Its Appropriations on the Housing & Urban Development Committee'?" That happened before his changing of every lyric to "hoooagies."

Slack Video of the Day: From the recent Live 8 Reunion, here's a little Comfortably Numb and some Money. And here's a quick clip I took of Brain Damage from the MSG show.

Slack Song of the Day: There's only band I'd ever trust to nail DSOTM, and they did just that on 11/2/98 to a half-sold arena in fucking West Valley, Utah. The fun begins about 2:10 into these shennanigans.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

This Is What Happens...

...when Phish retires before its fan base is willing to move on.

Two years and a month after the band's final concert, Phish fans are now forced to converse on a message board about the nature of their penises. To snip, or not to snip...that is today's question.

What's Fonzie Like?

What has two thumbs, a healed wrist and four hits in his first four at-bats following a long stint on the disabred rist? This handsome guy!

Bobby Abreu may have stolen Hideki's show -- or, perhaps more accurately, dropped a bomb on his town -- but every Yankee fan on this planet gave Godzirra a long standing ovation after he reached base in all five plate appearances in last night's 12-4 win.

Hideki, it's great to see your smiling face and your slanted nipples back in the lineup. October awaits your clutchness, good sir.

Slack Video of the Day: Matty B sent me a fantastic e-mail last night, containing word that the Faces may re-unite at some point in the near future. Apparently, the ball is entirely in Rod Stewart's court, and Ron Wood, Ian McLagen and Kenney Jones are all on board waiting for their huge paychecks. If you're not familiar with the Faces (and I'm not sure whether people really know if the "the" is capitalized or not), check out these awesome YouTube videos of a band that's cool as shit: Stay With Me and I'm Losing You.

Slack Song of the Day: Donnie, Bux and I are off to Roger Waters at the world's most famous arena after work, where the former Pink Floyd bassist and his new band will be playing Dark Side of the Moon in full. In full, I say. In honor of our upcoming adventure, here's Floyd playing The Wall in its entirety at Nassau Coliseum on 2/28/80.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Back To Business

In an unusual move for a self-centered blogger, I'd like to thank all of youse for the truly staggering amount of emotion you poured into the comments section of yesterday's 9/11 anniversary post. I called for an open thread not knowing what would result, and you guys delivered like DiGiorno rising crust pizza never does.

As of the time of this post, Slack Commenters had written more than 6,500 words in 28 separate comments, not one of which featuring so much as a nod to the usual brand of irreverent douchebaggery most of us are keen on embracing. I cannot stress enough how awesome it was to read through your eloquent and heartfelt sentiment.

So thanks for making yesterday the least biting day in this blog's history, aka The Day That Slack Was Lamer Than FDR's Legs. Now I feel like I've gotta make child rape and McGreevey jokes all day just to scrub the warmth and fuzziness off this thing. That's right, squandering all the good will from yesterday seems to me like a real no-brainer, a total Schiavo.

Switching gears without a segue, the first official Great Sports Weekend of the unofficial fall ended last night. When people ask me what I did this weekend, my answer has been, "I don't know...but I'm pretty sure I watched way too many sporting contests, and I'm 99.44 percent certain that my lovable ol' Jets will be in the Super Bowl." Chad Sexington, I loves ya, and I love that new zip.

All told, I caught 13 games from start to finish, with several quick glances of other games thrown in for good measure. What follows is a look at how I completely wasted a weekend:

Set I: Liverpool/Everton Merseyside Derby > Arsenal/Middlesbrough > Manchester United/Tottenham Hotspur* > Notre Dame/Penn State** > Ohio State/Texas > Blackburn/Sheffield United***

Set II: Aston Villa/West Ham^ > Jets/Titans and Eagles/Texans^^ > Cowboys/Jaguars > Giants/Colts Manning Bowl I^^^

Enc: Redskins/Vikings** > Chargers/Raiders#

*with Illinois/Rutgers and North Carolina/Va. Tech teases
**with Yankees/Orioles tease
***delayed, with sleep teases
^with special guest, Bacon Egg & Cheese on a roll
^^with two television setup
^^^after Shockey scores and hands the ball to a military dude in the endzone, Madden says "We need more of that in football." Apparently we need more military guys in the corner of the endzone so that whomever scores can hand them the ball
# tape cuts out early in the fourth quarter

Slack Link of the Day: I don't know what's funnier, that a furniture store promised free shit to its customers if the Bears shut out the Packers this weekend and now owes refund checks to the tune of $300,000, or that it appears Saddam Hussein joined the cast of Kids in the Hall and vows to crush our heads. I am crushing your head!

Slack Video of the Day: I can't think of anything funnier than a wannabe stripper falling on her head while messing with the pole during amateur contests. And now that I see this video clip here, my original suspicions have been confirmed. It's safe for work, but not safe if your allergic to laughing at heifers.

Slack Song of the Day: This morning I'm feeling some Dead, whether you like it or not, and most likely you don't -- They Love Each Other, Dancin' in the Streets and U.S. Blues from Buffalo 1979.

Monday, September 11, 2006

I'm Gonna Be That Guy

I woke up groggy and caught the 6 train downtown, like every other day since I started my first job out of college. All six of them.

After transferring to the 4 at Union Square, I exited the system at Wall Street, then walked towards the water. It was exactly 8:40 am when I bought my bagel and bottle of Nesquik, said hello to the security desk and elevated to the 30th floor of the Trump Building. Fewer than 23 minutes later I'd be running for my life.

Everybody's got a story, whether they were inside the World Trade Center or teaching Hapsburgs in an Austrian schoolhouse. Some people enjoy a bit of the 9/11 One-Upsmanship, bragging at how close they were or how many people they knew in the Towers. Others like to share stories for the sake of personal history. And since I've always said that in a very weird way I was actually glad to be down there, to bear eyewitness to the events that changed the world, obviously I fall into the latter camp of pro-storytelling.

I was too far away to be a true victim, yet we were way too close to feel safe. Our office at 40 Wall Street may have been located a half-mile away from Ground Zero, but our windows shook fiercely when that second plane hit the second tower. We heard it. We felt it.

The giant fireball from the second tower that's permanently etched into our collective memory seemed no more than 10 feet away (we were in that tall, pointed building on the left) and stunned everyone pressed against the windows. Finally someone yelled, "Let's get the FUCK out of here," and we sprinted down 30 flights of steps as fast as we could. I still remember wondering whether the stock market would open as we descended the stairs rapidly.

When I think back to that crystal-clear and curiously bright morning five years ago, I distinctly remember commenting on how gorgeous the weather was for a post-Labor Day morning. It's always made me wonder what would have happened if it had been raining and flights were delayed: Would 9/11 have happened on another day, like 9/21? Would it have happened at all? I mean, what if the planes had been grounded that morning? Did Mother Nature fuck us, and if so, is she with us, or is she with the terrorists?

The "What If Game" is dangerous, however, because for all the negatives you'd like to wash away, you could also erase the positives. My brother, Red Cowboy, worked at Cantor Fitzgerald in the WTC for a while, and would certainly be dead right now had it not been for a bad placement decision after his training program. More than 650 Cantor employees died that day -- I think everybody in the office at that hour -- but because my brother got royally and undeservedly screwed, he wasn't one of them.

Instead, my brother was standing directly next to me at the window when United 175 killed many of his old friends and colleagues before our very eyes. Then we ran together down the stairs and walked up the FDR Drive in the strangest silence ever known to New York. If there was ever a time to be with family...

By the time we made it to the bank around the corner from Red's apartment, the first tower had fallen. The second tower fell a few seconds before we left with cash in hand. I cried for the first time that day as I watched the last remnants of a skyline institution collapsing on television at the Chase teller window. Hours later I don't think I had any more tears to give.

I always think back to what my mother must have felt that morning with no television in her fourth-grade classroom. She had two boys in 40 Wall Street and a husband across the way in the New York Stock Exchange... and no real way to contact any of them. Thankfully, we re-united two days later when the Empire State Building received a bomb threat and I evacuated my nearby apartment to the comfort of Long Island for five days.

It's amazing to me that five years have passed, that five years have passed since Red, Slack commenter ALL CAPS ANON, and a crew of dudes ran down the steps as fast as they could, that five years have passed since cell phone service just stopped for a day, that five years have passed since I called my roommate and told him to look out our window at history, that five years have passed since the last time I crawled into the fetal position and wondered whether we'd ever be the same as we were yesterday. Can't we just TiVo back one day?

So here's an open thread: What's your story? Where were you five years ago? Who were you with and could you even find words to exchange? Who roused you from sleep or whom did you wake up with the news? Seriously, I'm sure we'd all like to hear it...

Friday, September 08, 2006

YouTube Classics

Some great videos for your weekend enjoyment...

1. Winnebago Man's Outtakes
2. Drunk Dude Getting TASERed a Few Times
3. It's Still Real To Me, Dammit!
4. Grape Stomp (oldie but goodie)
5. Bert Blyleven Swearing Up a Storm

And last but not least, my all-time favorite:



Goddamn, I love that video with all my heart and all my loins. The crowd reaction is worth every penny, even though it's free.

Challenging a Challenge

The NFL returns! Only now it's more existential, or metaphysical, or something I can't even comprehend. If a challenge flag falls on the field and nobody sees it, does Daunte Culpepper still slurp balls? But more importantly, is it true that Hines Ward invested his Super Bowl bonus in buying 50 percent of a massive dry cleaning conglomerate?

So foosball is back, albeit a bit more boring than I remembered...and to get you in the mood for the full weekend return of America's new pastime, Jim Mora tells us what every team is playing for:



Slack Link of the Day: Oh c'mon! Who writes headlines like these? That settles it, I'm moving to Japan. There are so many gems inside "Slutty schoolgirls and self-circumcisions: All in a day's work for a urologist," but the headline is worth a read alone.

Slack Video of the Day: Here's an overwhelming piece of evidence for the argument that beating your kids should be totally acceptable in certain situations. This clip is both bitchingly awesome and wholly unawesome, all at once: The Crazy Frog Brothers.

Slack Song of the Day: The new Medeski, Martin & Wood with John Scofield album (Out Louder) has leaked, and it sounds pretty damn good. There's nothing on it that exactly breaks new ground, but it marks a solid return to that typical A Go Go sound that MSMW made you love in the first place. Here's the first track off of Out Louder, a nostalgic but fresh tune called Little Walter Rides Again. Enjoy.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Overheard In My Elevator

Girl: So, how have things been?
Guy: Pretty boring. I'm thinking of going into a schoolyard and shooting a bunch of kids. I need some excitement for crying out loud.

Only One Place To Go From Here...

Sadly, I watch CNN all day long. All day. It's not so much as a personal choice as much as it's an occupational requirement. Still, it provides me with a level of laughing-at-them comedy throughout the day that I wouldn't normally get at other jobs.

Christ, right now they're showing live "NEW VIDEO" of Paris Hilton being driven around in an unmarked grey vehicle after her DUI misdemeanor arrest early this morning, complete with a bright red "JUST IN" banner wasting the lower third of the screen. I guess this is what constitutes news these days, but hey, at least they're covering a living blonde chick this time. Usually, they've gotta be blonde and pulseless to get any semblance of air time.

Ordinarily I refer to the hours between 10 am and 4 pm as WCNN, the time when you'd think you were watching local news had it not been for the three-letter branding all over the screen: shoddy anchors, poor production, zero news value and the most horrific editorial judgment on television. I half-expect these jokers to go to every commercial break saying, "We'll be right back to Good Day, Des Moines right after this word from Softex Stool Softener and Uncle Buddy's Fun-o-Rama."

WCNN lost one of its worst offenders this week, and I'd like to take a minute to wish Daryn Kagan the best of luck at her new job away from the network. Not many people know this, but since I have the inside scoop, I'll let you in a little secret. Kagan departed the network not for a better job within the news business, but for a cooler one outside the world of journalism: Folks, say hello to the newest lead singer of the Aerosmith cover band, Draw the Line.

The current Steven Tyler recently had to undergo lymph-node reconstruction surgery, and while he's away, Kagan will be filling in for him. I think it's a brilliant career move, and probably a step up in terms of people taking her seriously. Best of luck, D.

Slack Wound-Salt Application of the Day: Congratulations to Anibal Sanchez for tossing a no-hitter against the the D-Backs last night. Some kudos bars are also due to Hanley Ramirez, who knocked around the 10th triple of his rookie season last night, which goes along with his 35 doubles, 13 homers and 44 stolen bases.

Quite a dynamic duo, and a huge part of a truly unbelievable Marlins run that I highlighted earlier this week. Sanchez and Ramirez: Where the hell did these two guys come from? Mang, I'd hate to learn they came from my team's farm system, like say in a trade for an overrated pitcher with a last name like...Beckett or something.

Slack Link of the Day: When I read the headline this morning that President Bush named Clay Aiken to a national panel on mental disabilities, I thought the gay community would go absolutely batshit when they found out about that slur. But then I read the article, and it's okay, it's not what I thought at all.

Slack Video of the Day: Check out the Top 10 Ping Pong Shots and Points of All-Time...the last two fall right into the ludicrous speed category. Dare I say, "Craisins."

Slack Song of the Day: Let's keep this simple today...here's Victor Wooten with U Can't Hold No Groove from 10/4/97 at the Wetlands (which closed five years ago this week).

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Great Spam

I don't ordinarily just post something without comment -- I mean, what blogger doesn't want to hear his own opinions, constantly -- but this is the greatest spam e-mail I've ever received. So I just had to share it with the rest of the class:

Subject: But now I can penetrate hardly and give the pleasure to every woman!

How are you? Studies show this is the most common disorder affecting millions of men - and women, too! >From 5 to 10 minutes of extra time and more - now real with Extra-Time. Everything has its time, and climax in bed shouldn't also happen too soon. Find what you need here: http://leonajrpil.com/gal/get/ Gain the enormous sensual vibe in your relationships - no frustration!

The e-mail wasn't signed, but I'm guessing the author's either Balki Bartokomous, Yakov Smirnoff or Sammy Davis Junior Junior's owner.

Thanks, I Just Had It Stuffed

Hey, so, uh, you guys, uh, see Lindsay Lohan's beaver yesterday?

I hate to paraphrase the kids from Billy Madison, but did you see that girl's cooch? Yeah, it's weird-looking. And now I'm in the mood for a breakfast pastrami sandwich. (that link is semi-unsafe for work)

Slack Link of the Day: I'm guessing he'll eventually be back in some capacity, but my buddy Dan over at The Daily Dump announced his sudden retirement from this blog-game yesterday. For a kid that routinely had me laughing quietly at my desk, I salute his efforts this morning. Ten hut, there's an officer on deck.

Slack Video of the Day: This video always kinda scares the shit out of me, but it also always reminds me of the time I took PCP and jumped out a closed window. Not really. Either way, what would you do if this guy started wielding a bat on your PT Cruiser?

Slack Song of the Day: You can't hear Jimi, or listen to him, or something. But you should try this morning, and to put you in that mood, here are a few of my favorite Hendrix tunes: Izabella, Crosstown Traffic, Villanova Junction and Bold As Love.

Monday, September 04, 2006

Unorganized Droppings

They tell me summer's over, and I don't like it one bit.

I was having a great season, arguably my favorite summer since the last time my family rented our usual bungalow at Kellerman's, that sexy greaser taught me how to dance the Pachanga and that dastardly old couple stole everyone's wallets.

From Memorial Day to Labor Day, this summer left an indelible crater in my brain where clear thought used to reside. So in lieu of any semblance of coherency, I present you with these 1,000 words, in six parts, born from my thoughts over the weekend:

--By now you've all heard about the tragic demise of the Crocodile Hunter, who may now be known in death as the Stingray Hunted. I always thought Steve Irwin would die from massive head trauma after he slipped coming out of the shower because there was no bathmat on the floor, or from an overwhelming loss of blood following a sad shoelace/escalator incident.

But, no, he passed as you'd plainly expect: a stingray wound to the chest. I'm not sure you can feel complete sadness at the loss of a man with a Bronson-esque death wish, but this guy had balls the size of Shelden Williams' head, and I respect that. May he meet up with the great gator in the sky, and may he wrestle it for sport.

--A rainy Labor Day weekend begets movies...and I managed to take in both Factotum and Half Nelson amongst the precipitation.

Factotum was a bit boring, moving slower than Jewish bowels during Passover. But Kevin Dillon's older brother Matt delivers a remarkable performance, and Marisa Tomei takes some time out from her time-consuming search for short, stocky, quirky bald men to pull off the comeback role of the year. The movie, however, begs the question: Do you really know anything about Charles Bukowski, or do you just know his name, say "Of course, he's a Giant" and hope nobody ever questions your literary scholarship?

As for Half Nelson, I think everyone should make it their beeswax to see it at some point. It's filled with tour de force acting, raw emotion and veiled subtleties (on that last point, it refuses to hit its audience over the head with obvious points like most "smart" movies tend to do these days). Ryan Gosling brings an unbelievable believability to his drug-addicted, inner-city schoolteacher character striving to be good in spite of the demons that make him a sinner. This marked the first time I've ever seen Gosling act, and I must say, if this level of performance and handsomeness is indicative of his entire portfolio, count me in. Also, crack looks pretty good.

--I watched Sideways for the first time as well this weekend. Good God, man, this is the movie everyone's been calling the best flick of the last few years? I mean, okay, it's good...but I can't help but cite this as the latest evidence of Above Average Fish in a Mediocre Pond Syndrome. Sideways is a whole lot like the 2006 New York Mets: Everything else around it is just so crappy and laughable that when something decent comes along, seats on the bandwagon fill up really fast. PigVomit is stellar, and the Asian chick from Arliss is fun, but let's slow down a bit on the accolades. So here's my unofficial review: "Sideways: Better than Schlock."

--Speaking of the 2006 Mets and AAAA baseball...Don't look now, but the Florida Marlins are only two games back of the San Diego Padres for the National League Wild Card. This the same Marlins organization that may actually fire its manager come November. This is the same Marlins team that started the season with a $14.998 million payroll (and that includes swimming). And that's not a typo, the Marlins are spending about a third less on all 25 guys than the Yanks pay for the left side of their infield alone.

Seventeen of the 25 Marlins on the opening day roster make the league minimum of $327,000. They started 21 rookies before the September 1st call-ups, and three of them are prominent members of the starting rotation. Yet despite falling 20 games under .500 on May 21, they're now a game over and poised to make a serious run at the playoffs. In fact, they're the first team since the Louisville Colonels in 1899 to fall that far below .500 and climb back to even...1899!

Just remember how astonishing this story is the next time you're watching the nonstop yapfest of Terrell Owens, the latest on Barbaro, another Chasing Aaron update, Lou Holtz's unintelligible ramblings, and anything else ESPN deems important.

--Yesterday marked the 13th anniversary of Jim Abbott's no-hitter against the Cleveland Indians at Yankee Stadium. Interestingly, I was at the Big House in Michigan for the first time watching Abbott's alma mater beat up Washington State when they announced the feat from the former Wolverine. Think about it for a second: A guy with one hand no-hit a Major League Baseball team (and not one of those 2006 NL teams, a real baseball team). That's just beyond comprehension. Simply unreal. You know what else? The high fives afterwards were hilariously awkward. Seriously, check the tape.

--Lastly, there were no Premiership matches this weekend, as the Euro 2008 Qualifiers took centre stage (Eng. sp?) on the continent. New English boss Steve McClaren guided the Brits to an easy 5-0 victory against Andorra at Old Trafford on Saturday, showcasing a squad that may have won the World Cup if the country's former manager weren't such a fucking obtuse lickbag (apparently Sven-Goran Eriksson was the only person who thought he could win with a front line consisting of a seven-foot, 115-pound halogen lamp beanpole, two guys that could barely walk and a teenager with no experience that someone could go to jail for fucking).

And while Liverpool had the weekend off, I still got to see highlights of my boy Stevie Gerrard ripping shit up against the incompetent and dirty Andorrans. Not only did the English vice captain put home a great strike to put the team up 2-0, but he absolutely deked the nuts off a silly Andorran and left him in the dust to set up Defoe's first goal of the match. Check out the full report here: You gotta see some of these highlights; it's a fun-to-watch clinic. We know the name, son!

Slack Link of the Day: Maybe I'm wrong, but this clip goes right into the Instant Classic file. Fat kid + roller coaster = awesomeness.

Slack Video of the Day: I'm not done with youse and Steven Gerrard just yet. I may have posted this once before, but it never hurts to watch the captain's Top Ten Goals video too many times. That montage includes his incredible goal against Middlesborough, but it does not include his incredible and incredibly meaningful goal against West Ham in the 90th minute of the FA Cup Final (play that clip with sound, loud). Take a bow, son!

Slack Song of the Day: I'm in the mood for Big Red's Big Horn Band, and I'm in the mood for covers...so here's Signed Sealed & Delivered, Will It Go Round In Circles, It Makes No Difference, and Ooh Child.

Friday, September 01, 2006

Go U NU & Steve Holt!

Two pieces of good news for youse this morning: Northwestern kicked off its 2006 season with a 21-3 win in the Randy Walker Bowl against the late coach's alma mater, Miami (Ohio). Leave it to a dork school like NU to recruit and start a quarterback named Kafka.

And, perhaps more importantly to the general audience, a little birdie told me that some network called G4 will begin re-running Arrested Development episodes starting Monday night. Remember to set your TiVos and DVRs before heading out of town. C'mon!

As for me, well, I'm not working today. So, um, fuck off.