Monday, June 28, 2010

Ridiculous, North Carolina

This intersection is in Garner, N.C. It bothers me every time I drive by.

911? Yeah, send the trucks to the corner of dumbass and stupid.

Sword weilding bin Laden hunter booked for Letterman tonight

From The L.A. Times:
Gary Faulkner, the American detained in Pakistan while on his self-imposed mission to kill Osama bin Laden, will appear on the “Late Show with David Letterman.”
Joe: He's my new favorite American.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Our ghostbusting movies are better than our soccer

My thanks to whoever put Ghostbusters on cable yesterday after the World Cup game. It helped.
I try hard not to steal professional pictures here. But this shot, from Guillermo Arias for the Associated Press, is the U.S.'s last game against Ghana for me.

Sending the goalie down. What could be more desperate, or less necessary if we'd played better defense?
I also recommend these pictures of former President Bill Clinton hanging out with Mick Jagger.

Random facebook post from someone yesterday: "LOVE that Mick Jagger & Bill Clinton are BFFs. That should be a friggin' sitcom."
Wait, Snoop Dawg is in a Star Wars themed soccer commercial?

Wait, Time Magazine's co-founder loved acid?
Lady Gaga wore stupid shoes and fell down.
See if you can guess where this article jumps on the stupid train:
He adds that there could even be other 3-D universes “embedded alongside ours”.

“In theory, there could be another entire universe less than a millimetre away from us, but we are oblivious to it because that millimetre is measured in a fourth spatial dimension and we are imprisoned in just three,” he said.

“Some aspects of reality — a unified theory of physics or a full understanding of consciousness — might elude us simply because they’re beyond human brains, just as surely as Einstein’s ideas would baffle a chimpanzee,” he said. ...

The scientific mysteries that may be beyond us include

* Multiple dimensions — string theory suggests space has up to 11 dimensions, but mathematicians have struggled to prove this

* Consciousness — scientists suggest consciousness derives from chemical reactions in the brain but cannot explain how this might generate a sense of self

* Are we real? — Rees and other physicists have suggested the universe and humanity are part of a giant computer simulation as seen in the Matrix films.
Finally, I don't know where this picture was taken, but I think the answer should be "everywhere."

The National Anthem: Meant to be sung

If you tuned in for the very beginning of the U.S. - Ghana match yesterday, you heard an incredible rendition of our National Anthem, sung by Americans out numbered and thousands of miles away from their home.

This video doesn't really do it justice. But, Georgia Bulldogs, when Tom Jackson says "Please join in the Sanford Stadium tradition of singing our national anthem," that is what you are supposed to sound like.

Except you've got 92,000, standing on their own free soil.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Isner downed quickly at Wimbledon

There just wasn't anything left in the tank for our boy. But everyone in tennis will remember that first round match.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Tony Hayward, you son of a bitch, all Americans have talent.

It's not enough to screw up our beaches and smother our pelicans, you have to infiltrate NBC's mediocre Wednesday night lineup too?

You suck, Tony Hayward.

Yeah. I don't know why I was watching America's Got Talent.

UGA's Isner at Wimbledon, in world's longest tennis match

John Isner, class of 2007, is locked now in the longest tennis match in the sport's history.

He's trying to get past Nicolas Mahut and clear the first round at Wimbledon for the first time in his career.

Update: This is just ridiculous. They've suspended play again. From The New York Times:
On Wednesday, it resumed, but after 118 games in the fifth set, which itself would be the longest match in Wimbledon history, the sun set and play had to be suspended again.
You can watch the tape delay now (4:50 p.m. eastern) on ESPN2. According to the broadcast, Isner has smashed the world record for aces in a match, recording more than 90.

Thursday update: Our man John Isner has won. Damn good dawg.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

L.I. endorsed: 30 for 30

The Two Escobars, like many of ESPN's 30 for 30 movies, is very good.

Though it's long, and the Spanish isn't translated perfectly.

The documentary included footage of the single most ridiculous thing I've ever seen a soccer player do. It's called the "scorpion kick."

Useful. Goalie Rene Higuita would miss the 1994 World Cup for visiting a drug lord in the drug lord's fake prison.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Henley: "If I never play another round ..."

From The Telegraph:
“If I never play another round of golf, then this is enough,” Henley said after shooting a 2-over-par 73 in the final round. “This was just the most amazing experience.”
He finished tied for 16th.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Sept. 11 pictures

My fiance, who used to live in New York, recently found a packet of pictures from the days surrounding Sept. 11. It was odd to find that, unexpected in a closet.

She has no idea where they came from, but they appear to have been taken by emergency personnel. If your name is Frank Pena, or you are or know any of the people in picture 5, email me at ctfain(a)

Friday, June 18, 2010

This is the man who cheated

Koman Coulibaly.

"He wouldn't tell us what the call was."

- Landon Donovan to ESPN after the match

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Those guys should do that

From the Associated Press:
SEATTLE -- Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates and billionaire investor Warren Buffett are launching a campaign to get other American billionaires to give at least half their wealth to charity.

Waxman, don't you f this up

Only the United States Congress could turn BP into a sympathetic figure.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Come on, Kentucky

You've probably seen this Touchdown-Jesus-struck-by-lightning story on the interwebs.

Elaine Spencer, our Ohio Valley bureau chief, notes that the statue, visible from Interstate 75, is near Big Bone Lick State Park in Kentucky.

"No one's allowed to be crazy when South Carolina's around."

I looked for a companion piece I could point you toward to go with this Daily Show segment on the improbable U.S. Senate primary victory of South Carolina's Alvin Greene.

But nothing deserved to be paired with it.
Alvin Greene Wins South Carolina Primary
The Daily Show With Jon StewartMon - Thurs 11p / 10c
Daily Show Full EpisodesPolitical HumorTea Party

Betty White was also on this show. I feel like I must be socially, and perhaps legally, obligated to mention that.

Monday, June 14, 2010

The Vuvuzela calls for profanity-laced tirades

Note: There's a lot of profanity in this, and an angry indictment of an entire nation. But I did take out the parts about Mexican soccer fans and donkeys.

I need somebody to explain these fucking things to me.

I mean, what's the point here? Is it really to mess with opposing players' heads, or is to stand there with a pack of idiots and blow into a plastic tube like a dumbass?

I mean, I'm sitting here watching the World Cup and the noise from these things varies, but there's a constant loud din. How does that give either side an edge? I can see the advantage on a set piece, since verbal communication would be more important for the defense, but what's the deal the rest of the time?

Seriously, is there anyone out there who has sat in the stands blowing one of these things who will explain to me what the fuck you think you're accomplishing?

Because fucking fuck. It's not even the noise that bothers me, it's that the whole thing just seems stupid. That and I'm pissed off that I had to learn how to spell "vuvuzela" to write this.

I have a buddy, and he's one of the few people I know in this country who actually goes to soccer games from time to time. He and the other U.S. citizen who does that both deemed these things useless.

"Near as I can tell, the only decent use of a vuvuzela ever witnessed was during the 2007 Gold Cup," my friend said. "When cameras at some lesser match (like Honduras v. Canada or some shit) showed a guy sitting in the stands, with the end in his mouth, as two other guys dumped full beers into it, using it as a massive beer bong."

Look what the South African company selling these things says:
"Put your lips inside the mouthpiece and almost make a 'farting' sound. Relax your cheeks and let your lips vibrate inside the mouthpiece. As soon as you get that trumpeting sound, blow harder until you reach a ridiculously loud 'boogying blast.'
Congratulations Boogieblast. I hate your entire fucking country now and it's your fucking fault. That's right. I got over apartheid, and now I think South Africa sucks because of your stupid fucking plastic horns.

Wikipedia says that, though the horns are certainly most common in South Africa, they have "been used in Mexican stadiums since the 1970s."

Well, that sounds about right. Those urine-box toting fucks would have a hand in this.

So what are we left with?

“This is our culture,” Lucas Radebe, the captain of South Africa’s World Cup team in 1998 and 2002 told The New York Times. “This is how we create our national rhythm and dance.”

Then your national rhythm and dance suck, Lucas. They suck.

The ACC is years ahead of its time

Provided that time is June, 2004.

From Tiger Illustrated ($$) last Thursday:
Clemson president James Barker is part of an ACC task force being formed to examine the issue of expansion and how it could affect the conference, has learned.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Conference expansion plan: Destroy Georgia tech

With the news that the SEC may not be sitting on the sidelines as College Football turns upside down, I have just one thing to add.

The conference's ultimate goal in expansion should be the demolition of Georgia tech's hopes and dreams, plus whatever else we can ruin for them. Anything we do toward those ends will be welcome.

Sex Pistols, Merle Haggard, World Cup

I now recommend Bill Weir's Twitter feed:
Despite the tie, Alexi Lalas says we should celebrate. So bring in the strippers and Zima (sigh).

For the rest of his life, the UK goalie will look at his fish and chips and wonder about the purity of the tartar sauce.

I'm quickly learning that soccer is vast stretches of tension sprinkled with lucky flashes of release. Kinda like marriage.

Colin Cowherd jumps the shark

Chief Analyst Joe Petersen checked in with this on Thursday:
I'm listening to Colin Cowherd. It's a quarter after 10 and of course he's talking about USC. He was comparing Pete Carroll and Dennis Erickson to the lazy babysitter who let you stay up late and look on the computer late. And then Nick Saban is like the baby sitter that would inspect your teeth before you go to bed to make sure that you got all the broccoli that he forced you eat out of your teeth.

Just bear with me.

Then he went on to say that Lane Kiffin is more like Nick Saban than he is like Pete Carroll. And then this is a direct quote: "Nothing is going to slip through the cracks with this guy."

He said that about Lane Kiffin. So I'm officially done with Colin Cowherd.
Agreed. I'd be surprised to find learn that Lane Kiffin knows what broccoli looks like, metaphorically or literally.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

BP: Basically South Carolina's fan base

Like a lot of people I've been watching BP's stock, wondering when it will be time to buy in and go long. I'm beginning to think the answer is never.

Look at this screen capture from BP's Web site, and note the first headline under recent updates:

Congratulations, assholes. You've reached a stratospheric level of not getting it. You're some combination of Kevin Bacon and the guys who started this Facebook page.

Here's the full release, which begins like this:
BP notes the fall in its share price in US trading last night. The company is not aware of any reason which justifies this share price movement.

BP continues to keep the market updated on the Gulf of Mexico oil spill through regular announcements. The response to this incident is our top priority.
New plan. Where do I invest in destroying you?

Friday, June 4, 2010

The 2010 Dawgs: Zoom

Yeah, I know. There's just no way. But let me dream, would you, and think of the 2010 Dawgs as somebody's PlayStation team.

From UGA, via David Hale:
40-Yard Dash
Skill Positions (Time)

Cuff, V. 4.24
Sailors, B. 4.28
Green, AJ 4.37
King, T. 4.37
Rambo, B. 4.37
Smith, B. 4.37
Commings, S. 4.38
Williams, S. 4.38
Wooten, R. 4.38
Harton, Brandon 4.40

Big Skill (Time)
Washington, C. 4.29
Dowtin, M. 4.40
Gray, L. 4.48
Murray, A. 4.50
Robinson, C. 4.53
White, C. 4.53
Dent, A. 4.63
Chapas, S. 4.71
Walsh, B. 4.71
Houston, J. 4.75

Linemen (Time)
Wood, B. 4.71
Dobbs, D. 4.81
Glenn, C. 4.81
Tyson, D. 4.81
Lott, D. 4.84
DeGenova, M. 4.85
Jones, A. 4.97
Houston, K. 5.00
Franks, N. 5.10
Burnette, C. 5.13

Thursday, June 3, 2010

L.A. Times: John Wooden said to be gravely ill

Former UCLA Coach John Wooden, whose teams won 10 national titles, was in grave condition Thursday, school sources confirmed.

Wooden, 99, is being treated at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center, according to the sources.

Image: UCLA Athletics.

Update: Coach Wooden has died. From The Times:
Yet UCLA did not win a national title until Wooden's 16th season.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Benjamin Franklin

According to this audiobook biography of Benjamin Franklin, Franklin edited the words "self evident" into the Declaration of Indepence.

Thomas Jefferson initially wrote that "We hold these truths to be sacred and undeniable."

A digital copy of Jefferson's original draft, with Franklin's edits, is available from the Library of Congress:

Available in a more readable format here.

I recommend the book, though it's long. As I near the end, I've actually started hearing my own version of the narrator's impression of Benjamin Franklin chiding me in my head, giving me personalized advice about how to live my life. It's a little weird.

As a newspaperman, Franklin was pretty much a gossip and a liar. But he did invent the lightning rod, which he never patented.