Saturday, May 22, 2010

Things That Don't Suck

I must be fair. Here are some things that (surprisingly, in some cases) don't suck.
  1. Watching the Orlando Magic get embarrassed in the NBA playoffs - For a sports team that's never won anything, they sure run their mouths a lot. Dwight Howard shutting his mouth will not suck.
  2. Being a teacher in June, July, and most of August - You probably already knew this. You probably think I'm lucky. I'm actually smart. I knew what I was doing when I chose a career.
  3. The African Acrobats at Circus Circus - This may be the biggest surprise on the list. Circus Circus in Las Vegas has free circus acts, most of which suck. Not this one. The African Acrobats (supposedly from Kenya) are awesome.
  4. Being married - Who would have thought this. Marriage is one of the few milestones in life that does not disappoint. You can throw in having children with things that don't suck too.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Things That Suck

Don't believe the hype. Here are some things that suck:

  1. Avatar - a cliche-ridden adventure film with over-the-top left wing propaganda and really cool special effects.
  2. Ipods - Why can't I just drag and click? Why does Apple need to make everything so freaking difficult.
  3. Cleveland Sports Teams - This needs no explanation.
  4. Barrack Obama - The great unifier, my rear! Where's the transparency he promised (2,000 page health care bills, for example)? Don't blame me. I didn't vote for him.

Why I'm Rooting for the Boston Celtics

I'm only following the NBA playoffs through my Lebron lens. Here's why I'm rooting for Boston to sweep Orlando and sweep the Lakers: Lebron's watching and here's what he's thinking.

  1. Dang, Boston's good!
  2. We almost beat them!
  3. If my elbow wasn't injured we might have beaten them!
  4. If I had a coach who didn't get outcoached on a nightly basis, we could have beaten them!
  5. Boston's getting old.
  6. I'm staying in Cleveland!

Friday, April 30, 2010

I would like everyone to know that I love my wife.

Monday, April 26, 2010

How the NBA Playoffs Have Made Me a Better Father

All parents live for the moment when they realize they are accomplishing great things.

During the 2009 NBA playoffs, I was watching game 2 of the Denver Nuggets-L.A. Lakers series. My inquiring children asked me for whom I was cheering. I said the blue team (Denver).

"Do you like the blue team, Dad?"

"Not really. I'm cheering against the yellow team more than I'm cheering for the blue team."

"Why don't you like the yellow team."

"The yellow team is a bunch of cheating, cry-babies!"

Kobe cheats on and off the court
Ten seconds later, Kobe Bryant (now known simply as the cry-baby to my two older children) slammed the ball on the floor and was called for a technical foul. A dream come true.

"See what I mean, guys," I pronounced. "They're nothing but a bunch of poor-sport cry-babies." A few minutes later I had to check on my youngest daughter who was crying in the other room. I heard a ruckus in the TV room.

"What happened?" I asked.

They both yelled with enthusiasm, "Cry baby fell on his butt!" as they pointed at Kobe Bryant, who had just fallen on his butt. That may have been the proudest parenting moment of my life.

My children know four players in the NBA: Cry Baby (Kobe Bryant), Mr. Ugly (Joakim Noah), Funny Guy (Shaq), and Lebron James.

On Saturday Night, I called my oldest daughter (Savannah, 7) into my room and told her the cry babies were losing by twenty-four. Her response: "The cry babies totally suck." Oh what a proud father I was.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Preparing for the Young Men's 5-k

Wednesday was the preparation for the teachers' quorum (the teachers quorum refers to a group of 14-15-year olds that I guide) 5-k. We did a two-mile run to prepare and I discovered a few things:

  1. Most young men have no idea how to exercise. They all sprinted the first 200 yards. Of those who sprinted 200 yards, only one was still ahead of me after 201 yards.
  2. Running with others makes you run faster. It didn't seem like I was running any faster than normal. I guess trailing the leader of the pack by a quarter-mile provided enough subconscious motivation to run faster. I ran about 30 seconds per mile faster than normal.
  3. Running for endurance (10-k and above) and running for speed (1-2 miles) are two entirely different mindsets and skills. I suppose doing one strengthens the other.
The young men must complete the 3-mile run in under 30 minutes in order to obtain my signature for the exercise portion of the Duty to God award. Since I'm 40 and no longer eligible for a young men's award, I just want to finish first. And I will.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

2010 NBA Playoffs: Game Three Thoughts

Thirty-five three-pointers is too many. Cleveland will win game four.

It's kind of funny I write this when I know absolutely no one reads it.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

2010 NBA Playoffs: Joakim Noah is a Loser

I'm not referring to Joakim Noah's basketball skills. He's a good player on a bad team. I'm referring to his comments about Cleveland's nightlife. I'm not from Cleveland, although I am a Northern Ohio native. I haven't been to Cleveland in several years. Other than its sports teams, I could give a hoot about Cleveland.

Dear Joakim Noah:
  1. You're not funny. Criticizing the city of the team you're playing against isn't funny. It's tired. It's selfish. It does nothing more than draw attention to yourself.
  2. You equate the worth of a city with its nightlife. Grow up. I'm sorry you can't find a decent skank after midnight.
  3. You play for Chicago, not exactly a paradise. In Italian it means "I crap." It's cold. It has the most corrupt political system in the country and has produced the most corrupt president in our nation's history.
  4. Your team sucks. Bottom line is the Bulls aren't any good. Shut your mouth and start talking after you win a playoff series.
P.S. Enjoy the rest of the 2010 NBA playoffs. You'll be done soon.
P.P.S. I don't really think you're a loser. I actually admire your work ethic. It's just that sometimes I get behind a keyboard and think I'm a tough guy. Please don't kick my butt if we ever meet. Go Cavs!

Pickled Beets vs. Unpickled Beets

My wife thought she would add a little excitement to our lives for dinner tonight. She cooked a pot of pickled beets and a pot of unpickled beets. We had a taste test.
And the winner is.........pickled beets. It's not even close.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

2010 NBA Playoff Predictions

Most publications record their playoff predictions before the playoffs actually begin. Not me. In fact, I don't even predict the first two rounds. It's a waste of time. In 2010, there's really only one team that matters--Cleveland.

I was extremely close to predicting the Cavaliers to win it all, having forgotten the painful memories of Cleveland sports' failures past, none of which I care to rehash, including last year's Cavaliers' playoff fiasco against the Magic.

I have, therefore, come up with two possible scenarios for the 2010 NBA playoffs:
  1. Cleveland cruises through the Eastern Conference, losing just two games (one each to Boston and Orlando). They take a 3-0 lead against the Lakers on a LeBron James 3-pointer at the buzzer. The series is all but over. Northern Ohio is in a state of near pandemonium, realizing the 46-year professional sports championship drought is about to come to an end. Game 4 begins and LeBron blows out his ACL and a stunned Cavs team loses the next three by a combined 57 points. Mike Brown gets fired after game 6 and LeBron is named coach. The team leads most of the game. A plucky Lakers squad cuts it to 2 with 4.3 seconds left. Coach James, wanting his good friend Shaquille O'Neal on the floor to celebrate against his former team, calls a timeout to insert the big fella, whom the Lakers foul immediately. Shaq misses both free throws. Kobe Bryant grabs the rebound falling out of bounds at his own end and throws up a desperation 94-footer that bounces on the rim 9 times and goes in. Pandemonium ensues. The entire city jumps into Lake Erie with concrete slabs tied to their waste. Lebron heals, signs with Orlando and wins 13 consecutive NBA titles.
  2. This one's more realistic. In this scenario, Cleveland leads in the finals 3-2 heading back to Cleveland for games 6 and 7. Once again, the Northern Ohio faithful wait impatiently for their first professional sports title in 46 years. The plane carrying the team crashes into Lake Erie, killing everyone except Sebastian Telfair, Jamario Moon, Daniel Gibson, Jawad Williams, and J.J. Hickson. The remaining five, calling themselves the Cadavaliers, put up a good fight but run out of gas, losing both games by double digits before less than a thousand fans, the rest already having joined their beloved Cadavaliers at the bottom of Lake Erie in a mass suicide.
I changed my mind. Just for fun I'll predict the series leading up to the most devastating loss since the Russians cheated in the 1972 gold medal Olympic basketball game.

Cleveland 4 Chicago 0
Boston 4 Miami 3
Atlanta 4 Milwaukee 1
Orlando 4 Charlotte 0

Cleveland 4 Boston 1
Orlando 4 Atlanta o

Cleveland 4 Orlando 1

L.A. 4 OKC 1
Denver 4 Utah 3
Dallas 4 San Antonio 1
Phoenix 4 Portland o

LA 4 Denver 3
Phoenix 4 Dallas 2

LA 4 Phoenix 3