Thursday, March 31, 2005

speaking of corporate sponsorship

remember my post about corporate sponsorship in poker?

33-year old Knoxville mother-of-five Terri Ilagan will be paid $15,199 to legally change her name... to GoldenPalace.com. and i'm not joking.

no word yet on whether or not she will be required to use blue ink and underline her signature.

press release here.
speaking of terri's, terri schiavo's death has inspired a very different layout over at Actual God.

Wednesday, March 30, 2005

Google Search

Not About Delino Deshields is now the number 7 result when you search for "Delino Deshields"- which I'm sure people are doing all the time. My clever naming scheme is finally paying off.

Early rising

Having pulled an all-nighter spent mostly playing online poker and reading conspiracy theories about the Bush family and only occasionally writing my paper, I walked outside for a bite to eat at the ungodly hour of 9:30. What I saw was frightening. A faceless mass of efficient Yale students and middle-aged white men who had actually been asleep and then awoken to do something productive at this time. I kind of felt like I was living an unproductive life, then something occurred to me- terrorist attacks only occur during the morning rush hour (9/11, Madrid). So I am actually just protecting myself from the enemy by sleeping until 1PM every day. It's my patriotic duty.

Along these lines, I was incredibly moved by the oft-mentioned-on-this-blog Dylan Gadek, who bragged to Actual God that he had "slept 46 out of the last 48 hours, man." One can only hope that the other two hours were spent eating sugared cereal out of the box and masturbating. The sight of Dylan, fully clothed, lying in a heap in bed, reminded me of what makes this country great. Mr. Gadek, I salute you.

Tuesday, March 29, 2005

Too hard on Arab internet humor

Perhaps I was too hard on Arab internet humor in my earlier post. Below is a pretty funny caricature of Condoleeza Rice from SudaneseOnline. Plus, there's this great one-liner from the site:

وتم اقرار المشروع بأغلبية عضوا فيما امتنعت كل من روسيا والصين والجزائر عن التصويت.

Good one.





NB: Actual Rod or Finnegan, post in the comments section what that actually means

Condoleeza Rice caricature

Racism by minorities/ Kung Fu

The great myth about racism is that white people are the most racist ethnic group. In fact this is far from the truth. I would argue that Asians are in fact the most racist. Based on anecdotal evidence from my Asian friends, many of their parents see black people as sub-human organisms. (Not to mention the many inter-Asian conflicts between Chinese and Japanese and all other Asians and Koreans). Black people do not on the whole hate Asians, they rather see them as comical. But as further evidence of the Asian derogatory view of black people, take the classic NES game Kung Fu. The game is based on the Bruce Lee movie Game of Death, which features Lee battling several "bosses" including Kareem Abdul Jabbar. Now Abdul Jabbar as you all know was lanky, intelligent, and lithe. Yet in the video game, Jabbar gets transformed into a fat, dumb, black guy whose only way of fighting is to make occasional really strong kicks and punches. I can imagine how this decision went down:

Takashi: Yes, third boss is fat stupid dark man, just rike Kaleem Abdur Jabbal.

Hideki: Mo rike Kaleem Abdur Gorirra. Hahahaha!

Hideyoshi: Actuarry, Jabbal very smart man. Well versed in rerigion, from Koran to Confucius.

Hideki: Nobody ask you. Go back to figuring out how to make graveyard impossible to find in Regend of Zelda.

----------------------------------------
NB: Jews, of course, are not racist at all.

O. J. Simpson Golf game

My friend Matt and I discussed over the summer the idea of going down to Florida to play golf with The Juice. We kind of forgot about it, but with the death of Johnnie Cochran today, I was just reminded of it. What interested me in the Juice besides the obvious was that in a New Yorker profile a while back, it seemed OJ was not repentant at all and was just a ridiculous human being- "O.J. makes humping motions behind women's backs, calls his 15-year-old daughter a bitch, tries to goad me -- a reporter, come to paint his picture -- into "admitting" that I've cheated on my wife or that I'm "into Christy" [Simpson's current girlfriend]."
Once I finish my bullshit school work, my number one priority is playing a round with the Juice. I plan on opening my conversation with him by saying, "How's the wife?"

shitting on the rumpus

i am in pierson finishing up the 3 problem sets i have due tomorrow, which should have been done hours ago if not for the fact that i decided to work in the computer cluster (good choice) and have dicked around for most of the time i've been here.

i get up to use the bathroom, where i plan to (think of whatever cool/funny catch phrase you use for bowel movement and pretend i used it). i'm in the stall and i'm about finished with the fun part and now it's time for cleanup. the wiping phase is kind of like paying the bill after dinner in a nice restaurant-- i'm tempted to skip it, but don't for fear of complications.

i reach over to the toilet paper dispenser and it's empty. no paper. no cardboard tube. nothing. hmm, i think i saw this on seinfeld once.

except this time, i'm the only one in the bathroom. perfect. let me check the next stall.

there's only one stall.

okay, no problem, i guess i will have to use the paper towel dispenser. empty too. what the fuck?

the only thing even closely resembling toilet paper in that entire bathroom was a well-read copy of the rumpus on the floor of my stall.

it was a pretty uncomfortable experience, but the symbolism was so delicious that i couldn't help but smile.

p.s.: noteworthy is the absence of the qualifier "literally" from the title of this post. i just fucking hate when people misuse that word. and you know what, i think i hate it even when they use it correctly.

A New Record

This is the biggest record for Delino DeShields since the man himself hit 28 Home Runs as a rookie for the Montreal Expos in 1990. That's right, 108 hits on Monday, a new high. Just goes to prove the old addage, "If you blog it, they will come." It also proves the other old addage, "if you hit the refresh button 30 times yourself, you will have a record number of hits."

Monday, March 28, 2005

really good news

you know, i was really worried there for a second.

meet the parents

so my girlfriend had been at her parents' house for the weekend. i called her home phone and her father, who i hate, answers. quick profile on daddy: football player in college, goes to church every sunday, cheats on his wife a lot. but, of course i have to be nice.

me: Hi, is Jennafer there?

fuck, should i have said "May I speak to"? do adults consider that rude?

him (curtly): Yes, hold on please.
me: Sure, no problem

meet the parents

so my girlfriend had been at her parents' house for the weekend. i called her home phone and her father, who i hate, answers. quick profile on daddy: football player in college, goes to church every sunday, cheats on his wife a lot. also, i think he is vaguely anti-semitic. but, of course i have to be nice.

she is not home and so i have to engage in a little conversation with dad. after he says she's not home, he asks "is this alex?" to which i reply "yes, how are you?". he says "umm, this is mr. _____". now i am thinking, what the fuck kind of response was that? and then i realize, he must have misheard me as saying "who are you?" which would be an incredibly weird and rude thing for me to say. but i'm not really confident enough in my read to be like "no, i said how are you, not who are you." if i am wrong, and he just didn't hear me at all, it will be incredibly awkward, and it will probably be awkward even if i am right. so i just let it go.

i'm almost sure he said "jew have a good night" before we hung up.

Sunday, March 27, 2005

Low quality of humor in Iraqi blogs

A typical paragraph from a somewhat amusing Iraqi blog:

What followed was almost a month of heavy bombing. That chaotic night became the intro to endless chaotic days and long, sleepless nights. You get to a point during extended air-raids where you lose track of the days. You lose track of time. The week stops being Friday, Saturday, Sunday, etc. The days stop being about hours. You begin to measure time with the number of bombs that fell, the number of minutes the terror lasted and the number of times you wake up in the middle of the night to the sound of gunfire and explosions.

Come on, man. I mean this is mildly amusing, but you take way too long to get to the punchline and it's a little too broad for my tastes. Also, you really don't have enough of an ironic tone, which is something that usually works well in the blog format. But overall, a nice first effort- i definitely had some chuckles there. I guess it will take Iraqis a while to get up to the level of Not About Delino Deshields or Actual God.

Separated At Birth #6

My friend Nick's dad Steve, and Russian revolutionary V.I. Lenin.

Steve Atwood

V.I. Lenin

The Sports Scene, with Richard Berger

Note that this post is vaguely in the realm of being about Delino Deshields, just to warn you. Now without further adieu, from the world of Sports, guest columnist Rich Berger:

The Big Lebowski Baseball Preview:


“Forget it, Donny. You’re out of your element.”

This quote goes to the Boston Red Sox, who open the baseball season as defending World Series champions for the first time in 86 years. How will Red Sox Nation react to being the team to beat? Easy, they will point to the Yankees’ off-season moves, particularly the Randy Johnson trade, and say they’ll take a TEAM of idiots over a bunch of mercenaries any day. Look for the Red Sox to make the playoffs again behind the best offense in baseball. If their pitching holds up (Schilling gets healthy, Clement and Miller pitch to their potential) they can take the division, otherwise they will be the wild card team again, but they sure didn’t mind that last year.

“You’re not wrong, Walter, you’re just an asshole.”

The Dude speaks for America here, and he’s talking about the New York Yankees. They do everything they can to win and you can’t really fault them for that. They just happen to have more money and more prestige than any other team in the major leagues, allowing them to go out and get Alex Rodriguez and Randy Johnson in back-to-back off-seasons. They can also overpay Jaret Wright and Carl Pavano and think nothing of it. We hate them for it, and that’s all we can do. But the Yankees are still assholes, and let’s hope that their World Series drought continues for as long as possible.


“Just because we’re bereaved doesn’t mean we’re saps!”

This quote goes to the St. Louis Cardinals, 2004 National League pennant winners and World Series losers. They may have been upset about being swept by the Red Sox, but this winter they went out and only got better, acquiring multiple-time All-Star Mark Mulder to bolster their somewhat suspect rotation. If Mulder can overcome his late-season struggles he will be a very effective top-of-the-line starter for St Louis. The Cardinals will also have the services of Larry Walker for an entire season, to go along with the incomparable Albert Pujols and the rest of the best lineup in the National League. They have an excellent chance of a repeat trip to the Fall Classic.


“…Dude, uh, tomorrow is already the tenth…Just, uh, slip the rent under my door.”

This money-related line goes to this winter’s big spenders, the New York Mets, who made a big down payment, but might not be able to keep on the monthly “rent.” The Mets lavished large sums of cash on free agents Carlos Beltran, Pedro Martinez, and Kris Benson, and these superstars (and career underachiever) will be expected to produce immediately, if not sooner. The Mets committed approximately $200 million in contracts to these three players, and the fans (including myself) will expect to have something to show for it. You can be certain that even if it’s only May and the Mets aren’t in the thick of the National League East race, all the optimism of the winter and spring will be gone and new General Manager Omar Minaya will wish he still worked for the Expos (or Nationals). That said, I think that the Mets will be competitive in the NL East this season, with David Wright poised to become a household name. But ultimately New York will probably fall short in a division that could be won by anyone but the Nationals.

“This is what happens when you fuck a stranger in the ass!”

This memorable line from Walter goes to Sammy Sosa and the Baltimore Orioles. Sosa’s story is one of a steroid-propelled, selfish superstar who walked out on the team that made him an icon. His first reward this season: a trip to Washington, not to play the new Nationals, but to testify before Congress and further tarnish his reputation (after the corked bat and the walkout, he’s not exactly in people’s good graces). His second reward: he joins a mediocre and overpaid Baltimore team stuck in the most difficult division in baseball behind the Red Sox and the Yankees and with almost no hope for a playoff spot. Good luck Sammy, you’re gonna need it.

“I hate the fucking Eagles, man.”

This is what might be on the minds of the perennially underachieving Philadelphia Phillies. Favored to win the division last season, they were a total flop, and with the Eagles finally making the Super Bowl this season, Philly fans will probably be expecting some sort of breakthrough from their baseball team too. Maybe the Phillies will be better off without all the high expectations, but in a division in which three other teams will be contending for the title, don’t expect a lot from these not-so-loveable losers.

“Stay out of Malibu, deadbeat!”

Now I respect Arte Moreno for constantly trying to improve his team and be a fan-friendly owner, but renaming the Anaheim Angels the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim is just a joke. The team is clearly not in Los Angeles and does not play its games there. It would be like the NFL’s Jets and Giants saying they were from New York…wait…that’s a whole separate issue. But seriously, I understand that it might be easier for Moreno to market Angels gear that can capitalize on the famous initials L.A., but this move sets a bad precedent and serves to further marginalize small-market teams and the cities they play in. In addition, it creates illegitimate competition for the Los Angeles Dodgers who really do play in Los Angeles.

“…Eight-year-olds, Dude.”

This reference to Jesus Quintana’s pederasty could just as well be used as part of a description of the Oakland Athletics’ starting rotation. Featuring young guns Rich Harden, Danny Haren, Joe Blanton, and Dan Meyer, along with 26-year-old “veteran” Barry Zito, this retooled staff will be critical to the success of a team that missed the playoffs for the first time since 1999 last season. General Manager Billy Beane typically ignores conventional wisdom and this off-season was no different as he traded away two of the three pitchers (Tim Hudson and Mark Mulder) who were critical to the A’s recent run of success in the American League. But Beane, who works with a smaller budget than many other GM’s, usually knows what he’s doing, so I will give him the benefit of the doubt and expect the A’s to be highly competitive again in the American League West this season.

“…That rug really tied the room together, did it not?”

He may not be media-friendly, but, steroids or not, he sure can hit a baseball. I’m talking of course about Barry Bonds, the heart and soul of the San Francisco Giants, and the most dominant individual player in a very team-oriented sport. Bonds could miss the whole season, although I think that is unlikely, but any time out of that lineup would be devastating for a veteran-laden team whose World Series chances get slimmer with each passing day. He is an irreplaceable force, changing the entire manner in which teams approach the Giants’ offense. The loss of Bonds for a significant portion of the season will thus illustrate the mediocrity of the team that has been surrounding him for the past few years. The Giants will struggle considerably without Bonds, but if he returns early enough, they still might have a chance to beat either San Diego or Los Angeles in the National League West.

“I didn’t blame anyone for the loss of my legs, some Chinaman in Korea took them from me, but I went out and achieved anyway.”

This quote goes to General Manager John Schuerholz and his Atlanta Braves, the team that now reinvents itself every season yet has still managed to win the National League East a record 13 times in a row. After the remarkable successes of J.D. Drew, Johnny Estrada, and Jaret Wright last season, Schuerholz was forced to be at it again this winter as he had to replace both Drew and Wright. Instead of complaining, he simply brought in Athletics’ ace Tim Hudson, put former 20-game winner John Smoltz back in the starting rotation, and replaced him in the bullpen with All-Star closer Dan Kolb. Those moves look like pretty good bets for success, but it will be more interesting to see what happens with reclamation projects Raul Mondesi and Brian Jordan in the outfield. One thing is for sure: you can never count the Braves out (until the playoffs) and this year is no different. They will surely challenge for the National League East crown and until someone knocks them off, they are probably still the favorite to win it.

“If you will it, it is no dream.”

Courtesy of Theodore Herzl and Walter Sobchak, this could be the slogan for a Detroit Tigers team looking to make a surprising run in the American League Central. The Tigers won 72 games last season, a 29 game improvement over 2003, and with Magglio Ordonez and an improved bullpen, there’s some excitement at Comerica Park for the first time in its existence. But, alas, being in contention probably is a dream for Alan Trammell’s team, as they will most likely miss the playoffs for the 18th straight season.

“You said it, man. Nobody fucks with the Jesus.”

Except in this case, Jesus is Johan, as in Johan Santana, the defending American League Cy Young winner. Santana was the class of the AL last season, dominating hitters with ease, particularly in the second half of the year, including two excellent outings against the Yankees in the playoffs. There is no reason to believe that he won’t a be a force again this season, and his performance will be crucial for a Twins team that has won the division three years in a row, but has only made it past the first round of the playoffs once. Helping Santana out will be a slew of younger players, highlighted by Joe Mauer and Justin Morneau, two players with the potential for breakout seasons. The Twins, despite potential competition from the Indians and White Sox, are distinct favorites to win a fourth consecutive American League Central title, but they want more than that.

“His girlfriend gafe up her toe! She sought we’d be getting million dollars! Iss not fair!”

This one goes to out to the Chicago Cubs and their long-suffering fans who would probably do anything at this point to experience what the Red Sox did last year and finally win a World Series. The past two seasons have been especially frustrating for Cubs fans as they first had to deal with the Bartman situation and a loss in the 2003 NLCS, then watch the Red Sox win it all in a year in which many, including Sports Illustrated, favored the Cubs to take the title. The Cubs lost two big bats this off-season in Moises Alou and Sammy Sosa, but they should still be competitive if their pitching can get back to where it was supposed to be last year. The keys to the pitching staff are Mark Prior and Kerry Wood, both of whom are struggling with injuries right now. If healthy, they can team up with Carlos Zambrano and Greg Maddux to form a fearsome foursome, but if not, the Cubs may have to wait ‘til next year yet again.

Friday, March 25, 2005

Why is this not a TV show?

This is from a Sports Illustrated inside look at the players. Why not make this a reality show or even a sitcom?

EWING:
How many languages do you speak, seven?

MUTOMBO: I speak Ebonics now, so eight. Yao, do you speak Ebonics? [Yao shrugs.]

Mutombo's cellphone rings. The ring tone is 50 Cent's In Da Club. He answers and starts speaking one of his eight languages -- not English.

EWING: Man, every time I go over to Dikembe's, he's on the phone. [Ewing picks up his cellphone and starts mocking Mutombo.] 'Doobleedoo doobloodoo doobleedoo. ...' I'm like, 'What the hell is he saying?'

albert clifford slater, you can do better

watching saved by the bell: the college years. does it strike anyone else that AC slater can do a hell of a lot better? man, what an underachiever. i mean, i'm not gay, but you don't have to be boy george to see that this is a specimen of a man! i mean, am i wrong here?

jessie spano was not terrible looking, i guess. maybe she's just not my thing. i mean she was in showgirls so i guess some people might think she's really attractive.

but his girlfriend in the college years.. i'm not sure if she is always his girlfriend in the series or just in the episode i saw this morning. the character's name is "alex". she is real dumpy and pale and i just don't know what the deal is. and she is pretty annoying too, and nags slater and has nothing in common with him. it's bizarre. unfortunately i don't want to mess with posting her picture up here. but try this link. the girl i'm talking about is 2nd from the right, between zach and screech.

i mean, i'm not gay, right?


P.S.

D2: The Mighty Ducks came on after SBTB:TCY. best morning of my life. now julie "the cat" gaffney (the goalie). that one, now that one is slater-worthy.

alfred clifford slater, you can do better

watching saved by the bell: the college years. does it strike anyone else that AC slater can do a hell of a lot better? man, what an underachiever. i mean, i'm not gay, but you don't have to be boy george to see that this is a specimen of a man! i mean, am i wrong here?

jessie spano was not terrible looking, i guess. maybe she's just not my thing. i mean she was in showgirls so i guess some people might think she's really attractive.

but his girlfriend in the college years.. i'm not sure if she is always his girlfriend in the series or just in the episode i saw this morning. the character's name is "alex". she is real dumpy and pale and i just don't know what the deal is. and she is pretty annoying too, and nags slater and has nothing in common with him. it's bizarre. unfortunately i don't want to mess with posting her picture up here. but try this link. the girl i'm talking about is 2nd from the right, between zach and screech.

i mean, i'm not gay, right?


P.S.

D2: The Mighty Ducks came on after SBTB:TCY. best morning of my life. now julie "the cat" gaffney (the goalie). that one, now that one is slater-worthy.

Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Slain students

Why is it that every young person who gets killed is a straight-A student who also does community service and is a stellar athlete. See this article for a recent example. Just once, I'd like to read an article that reads like this:
Stuart Caplan, a junior at Yale University, was fatally shot yesterday on Chapel Street by an unknown assailant. Caplan had a pedestrian 2.4 GPA and was by all accounts extremely lazy. He was not a member of any sports team or student organization, but sources tell us he enjoyed smoking marijuana, masturbating, and playing knock hockey against phantom opponents. Caplan had very few friends at Yale, but had a somewhat cordial relationship with Bulldog Burrito owner Jason Congdon. When asked about Caplan, Congdon remarked, "Stuart- was that his name? Yeah he always got a shredded chicken quesadilla with extra guac. I really mourn the loss of that $5.95 every day... and of a peripheral acquaintance of course." A candelight vigil would have been held last night for Caplan, but no students showed up, citing other commitments such as instant messaging, doing laundry, and reading Dilbert comics from 1997. In a statement on Yale's website, Yale President Richard Levin wrote, "Sometimes there's a beacon of light that brightens the Yale community with its warmth, intelligence and compassion. And when that beacon of light is senselessly extinguished, we are all diminished a little bit. And that is why it is with a heavy heart I tell you that Lampy the lamppost on Hillhouse avenue, was destroyed by vandals last night. Oh, also some kid named Stuart Caplan died."

the ace of spades brought to you by pfizer

for those of you who don't know over spring break i went to europe to play a few poker tournaments. the bigger one was a 10,000 euro buy-in tournament, which is actually a bigger buy-in than the world series of poker that you see on tv.

i only say this because i realized that corporate sponsorship is becoming an increasingly larger influence in (especially televised) poker. of course, there's the cliche about "the poker explosion" right now. whenever something is getting really popular, you can bet that corporations are going to come knocking wanting a piece.

half the players are more were wearing some poker site gear. a guy i met there, noah boeken, a young dutch player who recently won a tournament in copenhagen, told me he got a deal from everest poker to wear their shirt for 4000 euros, with a bonus for making the televised final table. and he took it, even though of course he has never played on everestpoker.com. many many other players had similar deals, i'm sure. (some were required by pokerstars to wear pokerstars gear by virtue of qualifying on the site).

of course i felt like i was just throwing away money by not wearing one of these shirts. so i walked up to the everest poker marketing guy and our conversation went something like this:

me: how much will you pay me to wear your shirt?
poker marketing guy: well, we only pay players in the tournament to wear our shirts.
me: . . . i am playing in the tournament.
pmg: really? i'm sorry, who are you?
me: alex jacob
pmg: (silent stare)
me: yahtzem on pokerstars
pmg: (silent stare)
me: Y-A-H-.. nevermind, can i just have a shirt?
pmg: well, they are pretty nice shirts.
me: fine, i'll give you 20 euro for one.
pmg: no, i don't think we want that negative advertising. in fact we'll pay you 4000 euros not to wear our shirt.
me: but i was doing that for free already-- nevermind i'll take it.


anyway, i think this is only going to get bigger. eventually i think most every player in every major televised tournament will have some kind of poker site gear on. it will be like tennis. and why restrict advertising to just poker sites? how much should heineken pay for you to conspicuously swig their beer at the final TV table? how much should oakley pay for you to wear their sunglasses? and you know how a vodka company might pay a hot girl to go to bars and have guys buy her their brand? could something similar happen in poker? might they pay you to simply talk about a certain site at a poker table?

it's getting kind of out of hand. the next thing you know a guy will show up at the final table in a ridiculous pink bunny suit advertising for whoever.com.

oh, wait. that's already happened.

reckless with curtains

my laptop is busted. big surprise there since i treat it like absolute shit. anyway, the upshot of this is that i had to go over tom's tonight to pick up his extra laptop. also of note is the fact that tom's laptop is very very small and the keyboard is a pain in the ass to use. and the right shift button is about 1/4 the size of the capslock button. why? who uses the capslock button? so that's partly why i am not capitalizing anything.

i currently have no cell phone. so when i got to pierson, not only did i have no way to get into tom's entryway, i also had no way to contact him to let me in. of course, i told him beforehand to meet me downstairs, anticipating this problem, but he was not there.

so my first thought is to try to get someone on the first floor to let me in. so i notice that the lights are on in the first floor window to the right of the door. nice. so naturally i go up to the window. so now i have my head right up to the window, staring intently, mouth agape, looking for the inhabitant of this room. but it looks like no one is around. so i'm thinking about giving up, and then all of a sudden a girl comes into view.

she's changing. the girl is literally in her bra and panties and our eyes lock. what the fuck do i do now? who changes with the curtains open on the first floor?

in hindsight i should have just explained that i needed to get in the entryway. that probably would have been less suspicious than what i did, which was quickly look away and pretend that i had dropped a quarter in the grass.

Tuesday, March 22, 2005

More on the News

In regards to the Jessica Lunsford killing in Florida (if you don't know about it, long story short some redneck 9-year-old girl was murdered by a convicted sex offender). The interesting thing is that Citrus County, the fairly small county where this girl lived, has an astonishing 600 registered sex offenders. The even more interesting thing is that most of these guys are listed as "Offender" but if you scroll through, some are listed as "Predator". Imagine how much of a bad ass you have to be to be a Predator. It's probably the highest honor to be bestowed upon a child molester, kind of like being knighted.

Thoughts on Torture

With the whole Abu Ghraib scandal fading into history, I think it's time to give my thoughts on torture. I support torture wholeheartedly... but I feel the US government is too lenient. Palestinian hangings, sodomy, electric shocks? Gimme a break. Here's a list of the REAL DEAL when it comes to torture.

Force prisoners to:
1. Eat a burrito from Bulldog Burrito- the rice is terrible, the meat is dry... if this isn't torture I don't know what is
2. Take an hour-long elevator ride with a quasi-acquaintance who he kind of knows but has nothing to talk about with
3. Lose a poker hand to Unidentified Lesbian and not be allowed to hit her when she talks about your bad play
4. Go to a store and have them not redeem your "free 20 oz. Coke" bottle cap because they don't participate in that contest- this one may be the worst, it may be too inhumane for my tastes
5. Play a long PokerStars tournament and then lose the connection during a crucial hand late in the tourney
6. Read a Rick Reilly column in the back of Sports Illustrated
7. Enroll in a Film Studies seminar at Yale
8.
Have Terri Schiavo as their teammate in a game of charades- "Goddamnit, Terri, How does drooling and occasionally smiling signal to me Revenge of the Nerds?!"

NOTE: Feel free to add on to this list in the comments section- unless it's "9. Read Not About Delino Deshields blog." That would be deleted and I would hunt down the perpetrator to the ends of the earth.

New Squash Rankings

Only change is that I'm dropping like a stone, having lost to Nick in a close 2-1 series. Other highlights: Molly beat Nick 2-1 and was considered "cute" by him - women's sports always needs a comment on looks in addition to the score. Tom hung on to a close victory over Nick 2-1. Noah was deemed too good to be in the league, and Dave was deemed too rare of a player to be in the league- so they're OUT by fiat of THE COMMISH (that's me). Also, Rich is still overrated. That is all.

1. RICHARD BERGER
2. TOM LEHMAN
3. MOLLY SWARTZ
4. NICK ATWOOD
5. DAN BERGER
6. ALEX JACOB
7. JOE BOONSIRI

Saturday, March 19, 2005

Muggings

According the YDN website's poll, most Yale students feel unsafe in New Haven. This is ridiculous- crime is extremely low on Yale's campus, and that is just a fact- I guess to these students since the Have isn't lily white Greenwich it must be a fucking war zone. The real issue here is, WHY ISN'T THERE MORE CRIME ON YALE'S CAMPUS? There are hundreds of thousands of dollars in wimpy Yale students' pockets. Is it fear of the police? If it is, then these prospective muggers are badly mistaken. Because here is how a mugging of me would go down:
Mugger (black, holding a gun): Gimme your money
Me: Alright, Jesus Christ. Here you go (handing him $100 in my wallet)
Mugger: That's not enough, we goin' to the ATM
Me: Fuck, um OK- we'll go to the one near the bookstore, the fee is lower there.
(I take out all the money from my debit account, $400, and give it to him)
Me: That's all I have, man.
Mugger: I saw your wallet, you've got another credit card.
Me: Well, that's for my trust fund. I've kind of spent alot of it, between poker losses to Ariel and purchasing high quality food and alcohol. So my parents told me to cool it with the spending and keep a "nest egg" for after graduation.
Mugger: Fuck nest egg. Tap that shit.
(I take out the maximum $400 from that ATM)
Me: That's all I can take out from one ATM, man.
Mugger: Then we're gonna go to some more ATMs. Maybe the one in Gourmet Heaven- come to think of it I want a chicken cutlet with bacon. And maybe some brie, yeah I like that shit- real creamy.
Me: Come on, isn't this enough already?
(mugger points gun)
Me: Alright, just don't shoot me.
(We proceed to go to several ATMs until my entire account is empty)
Me: So I guess this transaction's over then.
Mugger: Yeah. But if you tell anyone about this I'll fucking kill you- Peace.

At this point, I have two options. The most likely option is i'm scared shitless and don't tell the police or any authority figure because i don't wanna be a snitch- I know what happens to snitches, I've seen the Carmelo Anthony video from Baltimore. BUT in the unlikely event that I muster the courage to tell the police, the cop asks me, "did you see what he looked like?" I reply, "Uh, he was black. About 6 feet tall. Wearing baggy jeans." Now I've narrowed the list of suspects to only 100,000.

P.S. I sincerely hope no prospective muggers are reading this blog. I know from the readership statistics that I get a fair number of hits from among the criminal elements.

Thursday, March 17, 2005

Congressional Hearing on Steroids in Baseball

This was easily the funniest thing I've seen on TV in a long time. Schilling and Palmeiro handled themselves like pros, but McGwire, Sosa and Canseco were all just absurd.

Congressman: Mr. Canseco, you say in your book, "in the next ten years, virtually all athletes in major sports will do steroids. This is a good thing." What did you mean by that?
Canseco: I meant all players who need steroids for medical reasons.
Congressman: So you're in favor of an Olympic-style testing program for MLB?
Canseco: Yes, definitely.

Congressman: I'd like each of you to comment on your experiences seeing steroid use in the clubhouse first hand.
McGwire: I won't talk about the past. I want to talk about the positive.
Congressman: That didn't answer my question.
McGwire: The past is the past, let's talk about the future, the positives.

And the grand slam---

Congressman: [insert any question]
Sosa: (eyes dart around for awhile and a look of extreme nervousness crosses his face) Um, I don't know, mang.

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

Comments

People- I give you so much, and all you do is take take take. I'm always checking for comments because this is a two-way street. That's the beauty of blogs. You can even comment anonymously if you don't want to let your identity be known. But I need that feedback, people.

The Digital Divide

The Economist has a great article about how the Western world and the Third World are getting farther and farther apart in levels of technology/knowledge. Along these lines, it is a tragedy that little tikes like this don't get to read NotAboutDelinoDeshields. If they don't know squash rankings, separated at birth connections, science corner facts, and amusing anecdotes, then how are they going to compete in the increasingly wired global job marketplace? Returning to my previous post, imagine a different job interview, this time with little Nduku of Zimbabwe rather than Unidentified Lesbian:

Employer: OK, you're doing great Nduku. Now last question, pretty standard stuff, what celebrity does Dylan Gadek resemble?

Nduku: (blank stare) cluck-cluck-cluck

Employer: Oooh, I'm sorry, the answer was dearly departed comic legend John Candy. That one was kind of a dealbreaker, Nduku.

Sunday, March 13, 2005

Jobs

I vowed not to blog over spring break, but I can't help myself:

How is it that a certain lesbian who plays at a certain poker table gets a pretty sweet consulting job, and I'm unemployed? This isn't fair. I can imagine how her interview went--

Employer: So tell me why you think you're qualfied for this job?

Unidentified Lesbian (UL): Well, I'm a lesbian, so I always make a big stink when someone uses the word "gay" or "fag" in a derogatory way- even when they obviously aren't homophobic and are just joking around.

Employer: Ooh, that's good I like that. Tell me more.

UL: Let's see, I think I know everything about everything, especially poker.

Employer: Sounds promising- elaborate.

UL: You see I sit down at poker tables with complete strangers (often at Foxwoods Resort and Casino). After one of these strangers has lost his meager social security stipend for the month on a questionably played hand and is contemplating ending it all, I tell him why his play was stupid and how he should've played the hand. I think they find it real helpful.

Employer: Wow. OK any last reasons why you think you're particularly qualified.

UL: Hmmm. Oh, also I constantly send Instant Messages to Dan while he's trying to masturbate.

Employer: Wouldn't that, uh, you know, kill the mood? Forget it. You're hired!

Friday, March 04, 2005

My Uncle Dennis

Pictured below is my Uncle Dennis (on the left). I haven't seen him in maybe 10 years, but apparently he has become a right-wing lunatic, as you can see from the fact that he hunts wild boar with rednecks and owns a rifle. He also hosts a Rush Limbaugh-style talk show in Miami. How am I related to this man?

My Uncle Dennis (on the left)

In Defense of Eli

In my comments section, the actual Rod said, " did you guys know that eli is actually a hardcore republican? not just republican, he's enamoured with bush...an ARAB self-hater. i want to crack open his head with my nalgene."
Let me point out where Eli is coming from. First of all, he's Christian, so he's obviously more inclined to be pro-American and pro-Western. Second, he comes from Lebanon, a country that was wracked by civil war for almost 20 years and has been occupied by Syria for almost 30 years (obviously you know this rod, I'm just putting it out there) and he has seen friends and relatives of his die at the hands of Islamic terrorists - so when he perceives Bush doing something that most people would agree has had at least SOME positive effect on the Middle East (despite what you and I obviously recognize as all the negatives of the lives lost and the torture and the lies), he supports it. Third, there is often a tendency for immigrants from third-world countries who have succeeded in America to be very pro-American. For all these reasons and more, I still like Eli and his adoration of Bush makes sense given his background.
ALSO, if you want a discount on falafel, tell Eli that you voted for Bush.

Underrated Homeless Guy

Sure, everyone knows certain members of the New Haven homeless scene - the Flower Lady, the Shakespeare Lady, the Poetry Lady, and maybe even Joe or Country Ray. But my guy, he never gets any buzz. His turf is usually the area between Au Bon Pain and Starbucks, and he sometimes goes in those establishments. He looks exactly like Ralph Nader. And he makes farting noises all the time. It never ceases to amuse him, or me for that matter. Just thought I'd let you in on this hidden gem. I would tell him that he is underrated by the Yale community, but he'd probably stab with an ice pick- and then go back to making farting noises.

Thursday, March 03, 2005

Gastronomique

Let me say that there are actually some great food/beverage purveyors in New Haven, chief among them Rick at Yankee Doodle, the old Singaporean cashier at Ivy Noodle, and Eli at Original Falafel. Also, there is Mark, the head chef at Gastronomique. This guy is straight out of an SNL skit. He cooks the most elegant gourmet food while he talks and acts like a construction worker from the Bronx. "Yeah, let's get some fuckin' prosciutto in dere, maybe some fuckin' goat cheese, and some a dat risotto shit on the side." Plus, the food is excellent and not as overpriced as people say it is.

TK's encounter

Went to TK's, and when I ordered a beer, the fat beer wench rejected my ID because it's expired. I then explained to her that although it was expired, it was clearly me and it was clearly real, PLUS I have a Yale ID and International Student Identity Card to further validate my age. She still said no. At this point, I was furious but I politely asked for a coke. She told me to leave because you have to be 21 on Thursday nights at TK's. As I walked out in a huff, I muttered, "I hope you die," which I'm pretty sure she heard. After walking a few blocks to calm down, I thought to myself, "Did I really want that woman to die?" The answer was of course..... yes.

Readership Statistics- see chart below

The blog was on the upswing two days ago, and it seemed like the sky was the limit for how many readers i could get. Then came a weak Wednesday. Was it just a market correction? Only time will tell. In the meantime, "ARE YOU NOT ENTERTAINED! ARE YOU NOT ENTERTAINED? IS THIS NOT WHY YOU ARE HERE?!!"

Readership chart

Wednesday, March 02, 2005

IM Volleyball

Shout out to the Trumbull IM Volleyball team for winning the Intramural title. I'm sure Actual God and Hidden Hand will have more to say about this, but I just wanted to give some props where props are due. Also, Kai Hassan is the Lebron James of volleyball. He can bump, he can set, he can spike for power, he can spike for finesse- is there anything he can't do?

Separated at Birth #5

Another one, sorry. This one is close to home. My brother, Richard Berger (TC '05) and Arizona Diamondbacks Outfielder Luis Gonzalez.

Luis Gonzalez

Richard Berger

Separated at Birth #4

You're probably tired of these. TOO BAD. I am mildly obsessive-compulsive, and if I figure out a separated at birth, I MUST put in on the blog. Below are Jay Goldklang (PC '05) and Espn.com Page 2 Columnist Bill Simmons (who I met once).

Jay Goldklang

Bill Simmons

Separated At Birth #3

A new pair. Yes I know they're of the same race, as were the last two but the trans-racial ones are really hard. I'll work on that. So here it is: Dylan Gadek (DC '07) and the late great comic actor John Candy.

Dylan Gadek

John Candy

Bob Odenkirk pieces

I don't want to hype these up too much, but I think they're pretty funny, both by Bob Odenkirk of Mr. Show fame.

Obituary

Bush Nicknames

Science Corner #3: Jewish people's noses

On an issue that strikes closer to home, I was wondering why Jewish people have larger-than-average noses. Well, here it is:
Q: Why do Jews have big noses?
A: Because air is free.
(courtesy of : LastStory.com)
Thanks for clearing that up, guys.

Co-blogging

This experiment will hopefully be successful, as Tom, who many of you may know, will begin posting on this site. Tom has a similar sense of humor to my own, so his posts shouldn't be too jarringly different. Also, he may bring a more balanced perspective to the squash coverage on this site. Hat tip to Finnegan's Wake for showing that this was technologically and practically possible.

Academy Award Predictions

Predictions only for the major categories:

Best Picture: Million Dollar Baby
Best Director: Clint Eastwood, Million Dollar Baby
Best Actor: Jamie Foxx, Ray
Best Actress: Hillary Swank, Million Dollar Baby
Best Original Screenplay: Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind

Tuesday, March 01, 2005

Science corner #1 Update

After doing so well on the question of Science corner #2, I decided to revisit Science Corner #1: Gay people's speech and do some research on the internet. I found this great website: Beyond Lisping: Gay speech styles . As a gay man might say, it's "fantassstic." Ultimately this guy is undecided, as he cites both anecdotal evidence that young boys with lisps have a high rate of gayness and more concrete evidence that gay men choose to talk in a more feminine way to define themselves as gay.

Science Corner #2: Black people's hair

I've gone back and renamed the post on gay people's voices as "Science Corner #1." Now for the next edition of this informative feature. We all know that most Black people's hair is nappy and frizzy, unlike the relatively fine hair found on the heads of Asians, Europeans, Arabs, etc. Why is this? Well, I did some research on the internet and found an answer: "Like natural air conditioning, this frizzy, kinky hair insulates the head from the brutal intensity of the sun's rays." (from Hair Story: Untangling the Roots of Black Hair in America). So there you have it folks, mystery solved.

Questions about homeless people

Homeless people have it bad, and I occasionally give them money. But if I could get one of them to answer a few questions of mine, I'd give them a crisp 20. Any homeless people reading this blog, pay attention.
1) Where do homeless people masturbate? This is a very private matter, where can they find a little spot for this? This would easily be my third concern if I was homeless, after food and shelter. Especially with the lack of entertainment options for the homeless.
2) Do they not shower ever, or are there occasional showers? Because if they never shower, that really sucks. When I go 2 days without showering, i'm all itchy and agitated and feel gross, so imagine going months. If that's the situation, I don't blame homeless people for being aggressive or pissed off or even killing people. This aspect is worse than the freezing cold in my mind.
3) Are there marketing gurus giving tips to homeless people on panhandling, or do they just have to wing it on their own? Personally, I like the "i'm not homeless I just need a quarter to use the phone" approach which doesn't work on me per se but could fool a lot of more naive folks.

Separated at Birth #2

Below is my next separated at birth pair, Former Denver Broncos QB John Elway and Nate Meyvis (JE '05)

John Elway

Nate Meyvis

Elizabethean club addendum

I want to note i actually had a wonderful time at the Elizabethean Club Founders' Dinner I was just trying to make the description sound more entertaining because it was actually a very pleasant evening. Sorry if I offended anyone

Elevators

When I was a youngster, I used to have visions of a building in which everyone had their own elevator, so no one had to be put in an elevator with someone they either didn't know or kind of knew but didn't like. Sadly, in the interceding 15 years, my dream hasn't materialized.
I don't think most people realize quite how horrible an experience it is to be in an elevator with someone you don't know or ESPECIALLY with a quasi-acquaintence who you kind of should talk to but have nothing to say to and don't like. I'd venture to say it approximates Hell. I do everything I can to avoid this situation, either by listening to music, pretending to listen to music, reading, or pretending to read. I also stand in the corner of the elevator and press the close button repeatedly just to avoid this situation, and if the person gets there in time, i say "oh phew, I was pressing door open" or "didn't see you there." No words can describe the elation i get from successfully closing the door on a quasi-acquaintance so that I get the elevator to myself or only with friends of mine.
If I fail, the ride is seemingly interminable:
(Awkward silence)
Her: A lot of snow out there today
Me: Yup, I heard 8 inches
(awkward silence)
Her: These elevators are so slow
(her floor comes up)
Her: See ya
(door closes)
Me (through the door): Thanks SO MUCH for ruining my ride.

Honestly what could be worse than being in a cramped space with someone you barely know/don't like and yet are forced through social custom to have some interaction with? Being buried alive you say? To that I reply, "More on the face, please."

Statistics

As you can see, I've passed the 300 level on page hits, which is quite an accomplishment. I'm sure about 100 of them are me but that's still 200 hits. Also I want to give a shout out to the actual Rod, whose blog I linked to. The actual Rod made a bold choice in design layout that I just couldn't pull the trigger on.

Elizabethean Club Founders' Dinner review

Last Saturday, I had the pleasure of going to the Elizabethean Club Founders' Dinner, the social event of the season- if you're old, stodgy and white. After an elderly lady with arthritis signed myself and my date in, I had a few gin and tonics at the open bar. This was also the time in which hors d'ouerves were served, which led to some great interactions:

Drunken me: What're those?

Black waiter: These are stuffed mushrooms, sir.

Drunken me (after eating one): Ugh, these are terrible. Send over the guy with the scallops wrapped in bacon.

---> Anyone who tells you that there are not class divisions in America is living in a dream world.
The dinner itself was fine, not spectacular. Once dinner started, the open bar was closed, but I snuck in another gin and tonic, heavy on the gin- unfortunately, a waitress caught me pouring it out. This led to an argument:
Drunken me: So 10 minutes ago this was free but now I have to pay $5?

Waitress: Yes, the open bar is closed.

Drunken me: It's a pretty arbitrary distinction to make.

Waitress: Those are the rules.

Drunken me: That's nice. (I walk away)

As dinner progressed, some old lady made a long speech about the great Elizabethean Club history and tradition. She tried some vain attempts at "humour" but merely succeeded in confusing and boring the audience. Then came the dancing part of the evening, with Sonido Unidad playing. Those are the hardest-working guys in show business, they're everywhere. I always wonder when they're playing all this upbeat music whether they're actually sometimes depressed but have to play it anyway. Last point, when I went to the bathroom right before leaving, there was no bathroom attendant, which was surprising for such a classy place as the New Haven Lawn Club. Interactions with bathroom attendants are always awkward because I don't tip them, so he hands me a towel, dries my hands and then looks expectantly, at which point I just shrug and leave.




Made this awhile ago but I still feel it's relevant
Posted by Dan

Separated at Birth #2

Here's another one:
Denver Broncos Quarterback John Elway


and

Nate Meyvis (JE '05)