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Monthly Archives: December 2008
Former All-Star pitcher Dock Ellis, who the Detroit Free Press seems to imply is best known for giving up a monstrous home run to Reggie Jackson during the 1971 All-Star Game, died Friday at age 63:
Ellis, who allowed Reggie Jackson’s famous home run off the rightfield transformer at the 1971 All-Star Game at Tiger Stadium, played 12 seasons with the Pirates, Yankees, A’s, Rangers and Mets. He retired in 1979 with a record of 138-119, but was best known for several colorful incidents.
In his autobiography, “Dock Ellis in the Country of Baseball,” Ellis revealed he threw a no-hitter against the Padres in June 1970 while under the influence of LSD.
I don’t know, I’d probably argue that Dock Ellis is better known for the acid trip no-no than serving up batting practice at Tiger Stadium. He certainly should be, at least.
The story — or chunks of it — courtesy of the preview option on Google Books:
In a news story that could become very damaging to the rapidly growing sport of MMA, TMZ reported tonight that fighter Justin Levens and his wife were both found shot to death in their home on Wednesday afternoon in an incident that California police are investigating as a murder-suicide.
Levens, a journeyman fighter who had posted a career record of 9-8 in UFC, WEC and IFL among other organizations, made headlines in the MMA world over the summer when he was suspended by the California State Athletic Commission after a pre-fight drug test at the July 19 Affliction: Banned event (for a fight that ironically never happened because of time constraints) showed Levens to have more than 84 times the allowable amount of the painkiller oxymorphone in his system.
Levens’ six month suspension was to end in January 2009. He had not won a fight since 2006, posting an 0-5 record since.
Just got done watching A Charlie Brown Christmas, which for my money is the best of all of the holiday specials that the networks trot out around this time of year. Granted, I may be a little bit biased since I watched this thing every year when I was little and also owned a beagle growing up, but to me the reason it’s aged so well is because of what a fantastic character Charlie Brown is. He’s just so miserable. He’s almost like an 8-year-old version of George Costanza — complete with the baldness. (Seriously, can someone please explain to me why all of these school children appear to be losing their hair? I mean, I guess I understand Pigpen, but what kind of stress is Linus under? And what’s Schroeder’s secret?) How could I have missed this when I was growing up? I mean, I knew he was supposed to be a loser, but the similarities are pretty uncanny.
Anyway, the greatness of Charlie Brown is at the forefront of the fantastic movie where he fails miserably at (off the top of my head) knocking a tin can off of a fence (everyone misses the can by a good ten feet before Linus takes care of business), directing a Christmas play (everyone ignores his instructions), picking a Christmas tree that is up to the lofty standards of the performers in said play (exhibited in an artistic scene where several of his mates rip into him, presumably while each stand in front of a different colored wall, culminating in an exasperated Charlie shouting “RATS!”) and then taking the rejected tree home and turning it into a symbol of Christmas that anyone would be proud of. (Nope. He puts one ornament on it, kills it, then declares “I’ve killed it!” and dejectedly walks away. Awesome.)
In the background, there are some fine performances from the other characters, who constantly remind Charlie Brown what a failure he is. Including, of course, his dog.
But the real highlight for me in watching it this year was checking out the dance moves of the Peanuts crew. The one that had always stuck out to me was the apparent twins busting out the ol’ sideways whiplash move while Snoopy rocks out on a guitar in the foreground. Sadly, this means that for years that I’ve overlooked my new favorite move of all time (with apologies to the Ashlee Simpson hoedown, which was one of the best birthday presents I ever received — I even tried using it as a flag football TD celebration), the sleepwalker. I almost immediately went to YouTube to see if there was a video of it up. In so doing, I think I managed to find something even better:
My favorite moment has to be the look on Chuck’s face around the 1:45 point. Obviously, the sleepwalker’s right up there too.
Tough news for fans of the vintage years of “Hang Time” today, as Fox Sports is reporting that Reggie Theus, who portrayed Deering Tornadoes head coach Bill Fuller on the early seasons of the TNBC series, has been ousted from his position as head coach of the Sacramento Kings.
Theus, who guided the Kings to a 44-62 record during his tenure in the California capital, was seemingly unable to generate the same success in the NBA as he was at the collegiate and fictional high school levels.
While many theories could be generated as to why Theus’s success did not translate to the pro game — such as the unwillingness of the Maloofs to go out and get him a storkesque female gunner — but certainly the question has to raised as to whether it had something to do with how he interacted with his players on a personal level:
Oh my. You can’t talk to NBA players like that. They are grown damn men!
Anyway, assistant Kenny Natt is set to take over for the Kings on an interim basis while the organization attempts to get in touch with Dick Butkus.
It’s no secret that the comedic quality has been steadily declining from Saturday Night Live. Reason being, the show has taken solid writing and performing, and replaced them with ludicrous “Family Guy” scenarios that don’t make any sense.
Let me preface this: I dislike Andy Samberg tremendously. For the same reasons why I don’t like Dane Cook. Over the top, not clever, poo-poo kah-kah humor.
But every guy has a fall man.
Unfortunately, no one told Fred Armisen this, as he took stage as legally blind New York Governor David Paterson. His performance landed him in hot water, as the skit has been negatively received by blind advocacy groups, and Paterson himself. The general finding of the Weekend Update sketch was its inaccuracy and over-exaggeration. Worst of all, the National Federation of the Blind has called it an attack on blind-Americans.
So, they’re saying that SNL is engaging in un-funny domestic terrorism?
I’m not really in this for the out rage, or the moral injustice that plagues innocent blind-Americans. (By the by, if they’re blind, how can they see the offensiveness of the sketch?) I’m writing this simply because Armisen is the first to fall. And we are one member closer to getting Andy Samberg!
Watch the real Paterson on The Colbert Report, and Armisen’s Paterson:
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[Via Huffington Post]
CBS News just broke in during halftime of the Bills-Jets game to report that President George W. Bush had avoided injury after nearly being victimized by an attack by an Iraqi journalist during Bush’s “farewell excursion” to Baghdad.
But here’s the gist of it:
BAGHDAD (AFP) — An Iraqi journalist hurled his shoes and an insult at George W. Bush, without hitting him, as the US president was shaking hands with the Iraqi premier at his Baghdad office on Sunday.
As the two leaders met in Nuri al-Maliki’s private office, a journalist sitting in the third row jumped up, shouting: “It is the farewell kiss, you dog,” and threw his shoes one after the other towards Bush.
Ha. I’ve gotta use that one.
Maliki made a protective gesture towards the US president, who ducked and was not hit.
The journalist, Muntazer al-Zaidi from Al-Baghdadia channel which broadcasts from Cairo, was frogmarched from the room by security staff, an AFP journalist said.
Soles of shoes are considered the ultimate insult in Arab culture.
Oh yes, we’ll link to the video as soon as possible.