Monday, October 31, 2011
Halloween is pretty cool. It's the one holiday that stays consistently awesome through out your life. While Christmas is the shit when you're a tyke it eventually becomes nothing more than an expensive headache with the occasional awkward "holiday" party. Thanksgiving is a time of awkward family time and heartburn and don't even get me started on Valentine's day. Halloween, though, that just goes from o.k. to awesome with age. When you're a kid it's all candy corn and dressing like Raphael. During your rebellious teen years, it's eggs, shaving cream and mayhem (and maybe some candy still). And by the time you're old enough to drink it's nothing but drunken debauchery, girls dressed like sluts and even more candy. But the thing that sets Halloween apart from those other increasingly lame holidays is the scary stuff that comes with it, like Snoot and Bagel's favorite thing in the world: Gore! Yes, there's plenty more gory shows out there that I've never seen like The Walking Dead and Dexter, but whatever, these are my favorite. Happy Halloween everyone (and hopefully you're not eating lunch during this).
5) Chris Beats Michael's Step Dad to an Unrecognizable Pulp on The Wire
The Wire and Breaking Bad seem to be linked by most people as the two best shows of all time (closely followed by the Sopranos) but they had little in common besides intelligent shows that deal with the illegal drug trade and occasional hard to watch violence. Season 4 was chock full of shootings and execution style killings but this murder stands out from the rest due to it's brutality. Dispatched by Marlo to knock off new recruit Michael's mother's baby daddy (?), Chris flies off the handle at what we can assume is a shared memory of child molestation. He beats the guy until he looks like a wet paper towel.
4) Michael Tortures his Girlfriend's Baby's daddy on Brotherhood
Brotherhood was seen by almost nobody in the 3 seasons it aired from 2006-2008 (so few people that I couldn't even find video for this scene), which is too bad since it was a pretty good show that featured some strong acting, interesting plot lines and lots of ridiculously violent acts on the mean streets of ToughIrishmantown, New England (or Providence, Rhode Island). Loosely based on the real life story of Whitey Bulger (of Departed fame), the show revolved around Michael Caffey (seen above in his usual pose) and his brother being on opposite ends of the societal spectrum, one a rapidly rising congressman and the other a brutal criminal. Of course, being a post modern crime show on cable, we were supposed to see that THEY WEREN"T ALL THAT DIFFERENT (gasp). Anyway, the show ended with one of the more brutal character developments in TV history. While Walter White is being seen as the first truly evil character to be a protagonist, Michael broke some new ground in the series finale. While Tony Soprano may have done some truly despicable things, it was always grounded in some type of reasoning (usually faulty reasoning but reasoning nonetheless). Either it was to protect his family or the code that he adhered to as a member of La Cosa Nostra. Meanwhile, Michael Caffey just goes straight off the deep end, torturing his girlfriend's ex for much of the final episode of the series. This being a 2007 cable series, Michael was an allegory for the Bush Administration but it's still intensely painful to watch. Take my word for it.
3) Breaking Bad- Gus get's half his face blown off
PTU's favorite show went away for the Winter a couple weeks ago, but not before leaving us with one of the gorier moments in television history. Crystal Meth Kingpin and Fried Chicken entrepreneur had spent most of the 4th season being an emotionless terminator type so it was fitting that he would go out the way he did. Half of his face melted clean off, the ever fastidious Gus fixes his tie before slumping to the ground, a disgusting mess of a cyborg/man.
2) Boardwalk Empire-Eli Kills a guy and The Old Guy gets Scalped
In it's one and a half seasons on the air, Boardwalk Empire has already won numerous awards, critical praise and a devoted audience in the heralded HBO Sunday Night spot. It's also had it's fair share of blood letting. Boasting a number of Sopranos' alums in the cast and behind the scenes, it's no surprise that each episode serves up a tasty helping of splatter along with the requisite angst and psychological explorations of characters. While most of the violence had heretofore been confined to the usual gangster stuff, shootings, beatings, stabbings, etc. last week's episode ratcheted up the gore with one vicious beating and one scalping (a first for television I think). First, Nucky's brother Eli, in a drunken moment beats a main character to death with a wrench in a scene that makes the head stomping in Drive seem tame. And secondly, Jimmy and scary, misunderstood Richard get some vengeance on an old guy who patronizingly (and stupidly) underestimated Jimmy's gangster. Not a smart idea as he would soon learn (by having his brains exposed).
1) Phil Leotardo gets his head crushed
The finale of the Sopranos is of course best known for the sudden and controversial cut to black, but few remember the other shocking scene that took place just a few minutes earlier. The entire season (last 3 seasons really) had been building up to the showdown between Tony's crew and thick eye-browed villain Phil Leotardo, who had been systematically taking out the entire Soprano crew. Tony was a jerk, but Phil was a real, truly heartless dick who killed indiscriminately and without remorse. We all knew he would get his just desserts just like we all thought we'd see Tony get his (or not). Unlike the kick in the balls that was the final scene, we got revenge on Phil in about as graphic a way as possible, all the way down to the sickening crunch as we look at his oblivious grandbabies. Sick stuff. Maybe it's just as well we didn't see Tony get what he deserved.
Happy Halloween, everyone!
Friday, October 28, 2011
Titans (-8) – The fka Oilers got housed, at home, and are mighty pissed. The Colts are already taking Andrew Luck's measurements. This game can get really ugly, really quick.
Jags (+9.5) – The Texans are like the "Giants-South". A week after going on the road, dominating a division rival, and asserting themselves as the "team to beat in that division", is the perfect week for them to have a letdown. They get a lowly Jags team who secretly play good defense, play hard, and run the ball well. I'll take the points.
Vikings (+3.5) – Cam Newton gets stats and rarely wins. He's also starting to take a ton of hits now that teams are forcing him to run. The Vikings pass D is not great, but they'll double up Smith and give Jared Allen just enough time to introduce himself to Cam's ribs. The inaccurate Newton may ultimately get the win here, but I think he will make one mistake too many to win by more than a field goal.
Saints (-13) – The saints rarely cover on the road but they should be able to score 21+ points on the Rams. Does anyone trust the Rams and AJ Feely to score more than 7?
Cards (+12) – Joe Flacco sucks, a lot. The Cards are awful in the secondary, but if they avoid the pass interference offense that the Ravens employ, they should be able to hang around for a respectable loss.
Note> Flacco loves throwing the ball 50 yards up field hoping for a pass interference call. This usually comes after throwing 3-4 incomplete passes that look scarier than his eyebrows.
Redskins (+6) – Buffalo hates playing in Toronto (as they should). But they hate playing run defense. I don't like the Skins, but I hate laying 6 on a neutral field with a middle-of-the road team that plays bad run defense.
Lions (-3) – Unless Jesus Christ himself comes down from the stands and suits up in a Broncos uniform, I'm not picking them.
Steelers (+3) – Steelers have lost 5 of the last 6 against the Pats. You have to think the Steelers are due to win one at home, right?
49ers (-8.5) – Jim Harbaugh has his team focused. A home game, coming off a bye week, against the miserable Browns team should be a big win. Their head coach’s leadership makes this team the anti Giants.
Bengals (-3) – I don’t love this pick, but the bye was probably enough to get Andy Dalton ready for the noise at Seattle.
Cowboys (+3) – The Eagles can’t stop the run. Dallas just ran for over 250 yards. That’s enough for me to take the points
It's a game that pleases despite it's control issues.
Thursday, October 27, 2011
His 15 minutes of fame may have passed us by but DO NOT underestimate the genius that is Basil Marceaux.Com (he refers to himself with a .com moniker). Here is a link to his new official blog.
He has run for office in the great state of Tennessee multiple times, and his main claim to fame was a feature on The Colbert Report and The Soup. Whenever I'm having a shitty day, I pull up some of these videos to cheer myself up. I've tried to collect some of the best below, but here are some of the wonderful quotes that Mr. Marceaux.Com has brought into the world.
- On crime and gun control "I’d like to recall all permit and registration for guns. Everyone carry guns. If you kill someone. No. You get murdered then you go to jail!. "So who am I to say Ima write an ammement to the constitution say, nutcase can't have guns, criminals can't have guns...The government has patriot missiles and we has sling shots."
- On the environment: "And, uh, I like to plant grass or vegetation across the state or any vacant lot and sell it for gas. So we can use it for our expenses."
- On illegal immigration: " I said what, in America, I was looking outside to see if they flying the Mexican flag out there. "We aim these little red things down the road every foot, uh every inch, put up an infared fence."
- On his sausage factory: "Maybe when I get my sausage goin, have these two people say Basil eat my meat, or maybe eat my sausage. But I need to have you know weird things stick out and give you make you history, what what what I'm an international celebrity."
- Traffic Stops: "I also want to stop traffic stops, set it up like the supreme court ruled, vanilla vs. Iowa. Can't find innocent car, you can't look."
- On Smoking Bans: "We got the smokers, even though that pack says it's going to kill us, if you look at their face they actually look enhanced. These two people are having the happiness to the maxinin."
- Renewable Energy:"By 2080 the whole southeastern United States is going to be a dry land just like Mexico...because of the sun flares...last night at 12 o'clock, yesterday, sun flares broke off sun, and came at us 1,000 miles an hour like Aruba's, came at 12 o'clock at night and no one even knew that. When that happens in 2040 to 2050, the solar panel's won't work anymore. Windmills will probably work as long as we can find enough wind to make them work."
Finally, as the holiday season approaches, I leave you with "A Basil Marceaux Christmas".
The long, national nightmare is over. PTU has returned in all it's old glory, just how your grandparents remembered it. After numerous complaints from half of the PTU staff ranging from mild annoyance to problems with commenting to unbridled rage towards the inability to post and even navigate the frikkin' blog, we've returned to the classic look that America fell in love with back in February. Now that we've gone back to our classic, well known format you can expect many more exciting rants, gambling picks, lists and other stuff at a higher frequency. Enjoy!
Tuesday, October 25, 2011
If you grew up in the 90s or you just saw ESPN's documentary earlier this year, you know that Michigan's Fab 5 were a cultural phenomenon. Four freshman that were young, brash and extremely influential on on and off court style from their baggy shorts to their sneakers. Those sneakers were (for the most part) classic Nikes, none more classic than the Huaraches.
The Huaraches have been modified throughout the years and have been rereleased in several different incarnations, most recently the Huarache 2k4's (of which I own a couple pairs). As is the case with most sneakers, or really anything that is recreated, the original is the best. They don't really look like any other basketball sneakers, and maybe that's what made them so cool. While most of the basketball world rocked Jordans or some generic Flights or Delta Forces back then, Webber and his boys wore a sneaker that looks like it should be worn just walking around town or maybe skateboarding, not leading a swaggering basketball revolution. Without a doubt, one of my favorite perp shoes of all time worn by some of my favorite players of my youth.
Monday, October 24, 2011
This is a long time coming. Everyone's favorite motherfucker is the Andre Dawson of the PTU keeping it real Hall of Fame, passed up by the likes of inferior real keepers like Rafer Alston and Miguel Cabrera. Today, though, he will get his just due as the realest dude in all of sports. What makes that skinny, tattoo covered ginger the poster boy for keeping it 100? Let's take a look at his highlight reel:
- Possibly banged his teammate's mother (which is usually very uncool) but that teammate was LeBron James (awesome)
- Was arrested with all types of weaponry on a motorcycle (including a sword and guns in guitar cases Desperado style)
- Blamed that arrest on Vicodin
- Applied at a Home Depot during the lockout
- Applied (and worked) at a furniture store during the lockout
- Purchased a White '94 Ford Bronco to get his OJ Simpson on
- Broke down in the middle of the road while driving said Bronco home and had to push it through the streets
This is just a small sample of the oeuvre of Delonte "keep it real" West. In fact, most people are ignorant to the fact that Delonte is actually an African phrase meaning "Keepin it real motherfucker" and never has there been a person more aptly named. His use of the phrase "OJ Style" is enough to earn him a spot in the PTUKIRHOF, but his continually awesome yet befuddling behavior is what cements his place in the immortal halls. Keep on fighting the power, Delonte.
The game makes and interesting point in making this the ultimate goal of the game: The only way to PROPERLY die is to face death with confidence. They also make an interesting subtle point: To claim mastery over anything, you must suffer... repeatedly.
Wednesday, October 19, 2011
There's been a bit of a non story floating around since last week regarding the Boston Red Sox and their wild drinking ways. As anyone who's half glanced at this blog before can tell you, we are no friend of Boston and it's sports teams, in particular the Red Sox. But we do love beer. And beer is not the problem with the 2011 Boston Red Sox nor is it the reason that they played like a Parkville team in September. As that t-shirt they sell outside of Yankee Stadium says: the Red Sox were never cursed, they just sucked for 86 years. And similarly, the Red Sox weren't drunk in September, they just sucked.
Sucked really bad. But it's not beer's fault. I wouldn't expect pitchers on their off days to not drink beer, in fact I'm surprised all of baseball doesn't crack open a six pack in the dugout. As Homer Simpson once realized, baseball without beer is a really boring game. If Lester and whoever else wants to open a beer while they sit in the bullpen more power to them, can you imagine sitting there for 3 or 4 hours (if it's a Yanks vs. Sox game more like 5) stone sober. It's not like Papelbon was funneling Coors cans in the locker room before he's called out to pitch and make that retarded face (though maybe drinking would explain the face), these are guys who aren't pitching for at least another day. I think we can allow them a Heineken while they sit on their asses like the rest of us. Not to incriminate myself, but I have maybe once or twice had a beer or an entire mini bottle of Hennessy while at work. Did this hinder my job performance? Absolutely, but I'm not going to say baseball players can't have the same fun I did. They weren't going all Don Draper, sucking down entire bottles of scotch and looking longingly out their windows. No, they had a beer or two and maybe some Popeye's chicken and sat in the dugout. And let us not forget that the revered 2004 team, the one that can do no wrong, those plucky "idiots" that reversed the curse. They said themselves in their 30 for 30 documentary that they took shots of Jack Daniels before games. And this was the starting lineup who had to get up and bat. But their drinking was just part of that loose, fun atmosphere that stood in contrast to the big, bad boring Yankees. Those little scamps! It's just an example of how winning colors people's perceptions. Fun loving Nick Swisher is just what the stiff Yankee lineup needs in 09 when they're winning. When they lose, he's a light hitting bum who doesn't take his job seriously like the old Yankees did. Like the cliche says, winning cures all.
So, Boston Globe and people of New England and the rest of Red Sox Nation, criticize the Sox for playing some of the sloppiest, error filled baseball this side of the Bad News Bears. Or for not hitting in big spots for an entire month. Or for letting big leads slip away time and time again. But don't blame beer for your team simply sucking.
Neither the Yankees nor the Red Sox are in the World Series, but contrary to popular belief there still will be a Fall Classic played this year and it starts tonight. Most of you probably don't care unless you have money involved but there will be a few really good baseball players on display.
As far as the National League representative, the Cardinals are having a UCONN type run this season. 10.5 games out in late August, they were the benefactors of that other epic collapse that nobody really talked about. The old cliche about just get in and take it one game at a time has been applicable here, as LaRussa and his boys have found themselves with home field advantage in the World Series (ironically thanks in large part to the guy they just beat Prince Fielder's domination of the All Star game). So how do the two squads you didn't really pay any attention to all year stack up against each other?
Pitching- Both teams have pretty decent starting pitching despite the fact that the Cardinals bullpen actually worked more innings than their starters in the NLCS. LaRussa is well known for utilizing as many statistics as possible and (some would say) overmanaging, so expect more of the parade of relief pitchers this series. St. Louis also employs the first ever female pitcher in Major League Baseball history, a fire ball slinging southpaw by the name of Whitney Starkington. Though little used, she's sure to dominate the pre game coverage and the ESPN human interest stories. Although St. Louis lost Adam Wainwright early in the season and Chris Carpenter got off to a snail-slow start, the starters picked it up in September and as previously mentioned, that bullpen was lights out. The Rangers aren't as imposing without last year's ace Cliff Lee on the mound but they still have a solid rotation. Also, the late season addition of Cuban dissident and midget Julio Mariposa added some grit to their already tough bullpen. Free spirited C.J. Wilson suffered a blister on his throwing hand last series but he's expect to play which is a plus for Texas.
Offense- Both Texas and St. Louis have ridiculously potent offenses so expect lit up scoreboards and the over to be in play every game. Most of the spotlight will be on best player in the game and one guy who Hater J actually doesn't hate: Phat Albert Pujols aka El Hombre. Pujols plays a slick first base but he's been absolutely tearing it up along with breakout star and ALCS MPV David Frees. Add Matt Holliday at DH and the Cardinals offense is looking very formidable. Rounding out the lineup is only the second Cambodian player in MLB history, Kat Tran a switch hitting chemistry major and poet laureate from Stanford. Tran burst on the scene in July and hasn't looked back since sparking Tran Fever in St. Louis. Texas's offense is no slouch though, as the Tigers learned last week. Nelson Cruz is having a 2004 Beltranesque playoffs and he's surrounded by big bats in Josh Hamilton and SS Elvis Andrus, forming one of the scarier lineups in baseball today. Someone who's been struggling lately is Johnny "Greasy J" Cifaretto, the self proclaimed "One armed guido" who despite having only one arm and being a guido has managed to hit only .075 this postseason. Ron Washington's insistence on starting Cifaretto has led to some rumors of gambling debts or other shady going ons behind the scenes. Catcher Mike Napoli has provided a lift with his big bat and sturdy defense behind the plate. Both offenses should be ready to slug it out and it will certainly be fun to watch.
Advantage: Cardinals (by a hair)
My pick: Cardinals in 6.
Tuesday, October 18, 2011
A friend of PTU that recently returned from a stint living in China came home with some surprising news. Firstly, China is awesome. Ex pats have personal drivers and cleaning ladies and basically live like kings. Plus, McDonald's delivers all day and you can get dinner for like 2 bucks and cigarettes for a dollar. Also, there's a lot of hookers. But maybe the biggest benefit to living in China-and one that was a total shock to me- was the news that a pregnant woman in China can not be arrested for a crime. That's right, if you're knocked up you have complete immunity over there. That's not all, this license to commit crimes extends over the next 2 years after you were pregnant! My first reaction to this was HOLY SHIT! Why hasn't anyone written a short story about this or a quirky indie film where a pregnant woman from Chicago played by Parker Posey becomes the head of a criminal enterprise of preggers outlaws? Seems like it would write itself. Either way, the streets of Shanghai are littered with waddling pick pockets, snatching purses in broad daylight secure in the knowledge that they will not be collared. This seems like a fairly stupid rule. Expectant mothers should be treated differently but I think giving up your seat on the subway is sufficient. Nevertheless, if I am hard on my luck soon, just look for me in Hong Kong. Waiting on my Big Mac delivery, smoking my dollar pack of cigarettes as I oversee my crime syndicate of pregnant women. Man, it'll be sweet.
Hey, there was a time when Eminem didn't suck balls. No, you say? He always rapped like he was in a contest to see who could fit the most stupid puns in a 16 bar verse? Not so. Even though today he raps like a 7 year old girl who's hair is being set on fire (or something like that) there was a solid 7 or 8 year period where Marshall was the coldest dude to pick up a microphone, regardless of color. In honor of Mr Shady's 39th birthday (damn, he's getting old to be rapping about poop), here's Johnny Bagel's top 5 Eminem verses from when he was still blond and wasn't unlistenable.
5) Brain Damage Third Verse (The Slim Shady LP)
A long time ago when I was a young Bagels, a hip friend of mine in my high school gave me a cassette tape with a recorded over children's album. What was recorded over it was Eminem's Slim Shady EP which featured Just Don't Give a Fuck, 97 Bonnie and Clyde and also Brain Damage. Thinking this was just some goofy white underground rapper, I didn't pay him much mind until about a month later when "My Name Is" was number one on TRL and I felt like an idiot. The third verse here is an example of an extremely underrated aspect of Em's rap repertoire, that is his storytelling abilities. Also the only known recording of someone rhyming "4 inch screws" with "orange juice". Good stuff.
4) Hellbound/radio freestyle (Game Over Compilation)
Hellbound was a Soulblade sampling song off of the Game Over compilation of the late 90s that featured Masta Ace, J Black and an Eminem freestyle grafted onto the beginning. Most of these copy and paste remixes come off at best clunky and at worst terrible but this one worked so well I thought Em was in the studio recording his ridiculous verse with the rest of the guys. Probably the best first line to an Eminem verse ever:
"I'll puke, eat it and freak you. Battle? I'm too weeded to speak to. The only key that I see to defeat you would be to remove these two Adidas and beat you and force feed you 'em both and on each feet is a cleat shoe".Vicious.
3) Lose Yourself Third Verse (8 Mile Soundtrack)
Something about Eminem's third verses. Guess he likes to finish up strong, and the last verse on this Oscar winning joint was maybe the most perfect rap verse ever. That doesn't mean it's my number one but technically it's pretty flawless. It's since become a staple at sporting events and TV commercials and your mom probably knows the chorus by heart but at first listen this was a freaking monster.
2) Bad Meets Evil All Verses (Slim Shady LP)
There's been a growing trend lately of aging rappers releasing joint albums together. The catch 22 of this phenomenon is that most of these guys were too busy and/or full of themselves to consider doing these types of group efforts when they were in their prime resulting in over the hill emcees trying to stay relevant by pooling their diminished talents. This past year has seen collaborative LP's from geriatric rappers Method Man, Ghostface and Raekwon, Smiff n Wessun and Pete Rock, Jay Z and Kanye West...wait a minute, that was good. Anyway, the point is there's a plethora of rap album team-ups that would have been any 90s rap fan's wet dream. If they were released in the 90s, that is. Maybe the most glaring example of old rappers releasing an album 10 years too late is Bad Meets Evil or Slim Shady and Royce the 5'9" who earlier this year put out an album that I've listened to maybe once in the past 6 months (besides that sappy Bruno Mars single which I've listened to unintentionally 800 times). It's a shame since these two used to make classics like this.
"I don't speak. I float in the air wrapped in a sheet. I'm not a real person, I'm a ghost trapped in a beat".Sheesh.
1) Renegade: First and Second Verse (The Blueprint)
A verse so ridiculous that the title of the song it comes from has entered blog parlance (to "renegade" someone is to murder someone on their own song in your guest spot as Nas rightfully pointed out). It's easy to miss the brilliance of Em's verse here since it's so seamlessly perfect. For fun, just keep track of his rhyme scheme in both verses (and I couldn't pick one of these verses so listen to them both). There's not one slip up. And unlike some later Eminem verses, it all makes sense. It's not just "words put together just to match" as the outshined Hov has said elsewhere. The craziest part about Eminem's performance here though: he's rewritten history. Most unbiased hip hop fans will tell you that Jay-z's verses on this song sucked, when in reality these might be the two best, most intricate verses he spit on the entire Blueprint album (an album some consider his best ever). But in comparison he sounds like a bum. Unfortunately, Em never reached these heights consistently throughout his career. But he'll always have these two verses as evidence of what an absolute beast the drug addicted Marshall Mathers could be.
Thursday, October 13, 2011
There's been a rash of disturbing sexual assaults in Brooklyn over the past few months involving tiny Mexican men jumping out at young women and groping them. It began in Bay Ridge and Sunset Park earlier this summer and continued throughout the southern end of Brooklyn in Park Slope. Most of these attacks have fit the same pattern: a short, Latino man with dark hair in his 30s (and is it any wonder that the search up until this morning has mostly turned up nothing? That description fits every Mexican in New York city) follows a girl in her 20s or 30s (or late teens) from a train station and either grabs their ass or breasts or engages in some other type of pervishness. From what I understand, this guy (or guys) is not out to actually rape any of these girls but gets off on the sick, cheap thrill of grabbing and running. If not, then they are really, really bad at rape. They don't get past first base before the victim hits them over the head with her purse and they scurry off into the night to plot their next attack or their early morning shift making salads at Pax. In no way am I trying to belittle these poor girls who have been attacked though. These assholes are the lowest form of scumbag, well, maybe not the lowest but they're pretty skeevey. Some controversy has arisen over how women should combat these attacks though. Recent urgings by the authorities of women to cover their butts have been met (understandably) with resistance and scorn by women's groups and most people I've talked to. The ol' "she was asking for it" defense doesn't fly today, and it's true that women shouldn't have to worry about their mini skirt from Forever 21 setting off sick impulses in South American men they pass on the R train. I don't agree with the slut walks, which seem to think that it's a woman's right to literally dress like a prostitute and basically act like a whore (that's pronounced who-uh) and seem to mostly be made up of chubby girls in their underwear, but I do think that telling a girl she shouldn't dress in a certain way because it will attract gropers is wrong. If girls have to stop wearing skirts because a handful of dirtbags can't keep their paws to themselves then the terrorists have won. Or at least the Mexicans have.
Wednesday, October 12, 2011
Might be a little late here but I thought someone besides Kid Rock should step up in defense of Hank Williams Jr. He's definitely an idiot and an ass backwards redneck (look at that photo up there and say he's not) but what he said has been misreported all over the place. He compared Obama and Boehner playing golf together to Hitler and Netinyahu cavorting. This is an unbelievably dumb statement, but he didn't say "Obama is Hitler" as most people seem to be saying. His comparison is iffy to be sure, but I don't think worthy of a firing. Understandably any mention of Hitler is in poor taste but I think HWJ was just making a dumb analogy, basically that the right and the left in America gadding about on a golf course was like the enemy fraternizing. This is extremely stupid stuff and represents a pretty scary and misguided idea about American politics (does he really think that the Democrats and Republicans should never come in contact with each other in a friendly manner?) but not as incendiary as "Obama is like Hitler". Rather, in his own moronic redneck way, he was trying to convey that the relationship between Obama and Boehner is like Hitler and Netinyahu. He could have said it's like Darth Vader and Han Solo or the Yankees and the Red Sox or something like that and I don't think there would have been the shitstorm that followed. It was a poor choice of words by an entertainer who shouldn't be held to the same standards as a political pundit or Senator. We just want to hear about him and his rowdy friends enjoying a Monday night like he's sung to us every Monday for what seems like forever. Sure, he's an idiot, but his message wasn't as idiotic as some might think. Sadly, we will all be ready for some football on Monday nights with no rowdy friends to share it with. Maybe the new theme can be sung by someone who never, ever under any circumstances will open their mouth on Fox and Friends. Is Kid Rock busy these days?
And so it begins. You might be surprised to hear that the NBA has been in the midst of a lockout all summer, but after another Monday of useless discussions, David Stern has officially cancelled the first 2 weeks of the season. Unlike with the NFL,no tears will be shed for a potential lost NBA season, in fact I don't think anyone really cares at all right now. Maybe this will change a little when the baseball playoffs are done (although most people will probably care little for the Cardinals Rangers Series anyway) and the NFL and College Football have run their course. So maybe next Spring someone will care about the missing NBA. But then, pitchers and catchers will report and March Madness gets going. So yeah, nobody cares about the NBA cancelling games. Except me and like a few thousand other dudes and probably Bill Simmons. The loneliest sports fans alive. We are the 1%.
The NFL is now officially America's sport. You could infer that just from the round the clock coverage of the NFL lockout during the summer months that consisted mainly of Roger Goodell and various players walking around Midtown in suits. Contrast that with the NBA's lockout that has been getting the last 2 minutes of Sportscenter right after the professional lacrosse and Premiere League Soccer highlights. Derek Fisher and Billy Hunter mutter something on their way to their Escalades about no progress being made again, we're not going to budge, blah blah and that's it. Chris Berman and NFL Game day come on and all is right with the world. Except for the handful of die hard NBA fans like myself who spend their hard earned money on League pass so they can watch December games between the Hornets and the Raptors. It's not too late to learn the Ice Hockey rules, I guess. The NBA is the Khloe Kardashians of the sports fan world (using an analogy that all NBA players should be very familiar with); it gets to hang around with the other more popular and attractive sports, maybe are good for a laugh or two when the others are busy but nobody will miss it when it's not around, and it is uninteresting to everyone but black men in their 20s and thirties(keeping up with this analogy, Kim is of course the NFL and Courtney is the baseball playoffs). It's tough being an NBA fan. We're not going to have protests in the street, the majority of us will probably just sit at home and play NBA 2k12 instead, unlocking past Jordan classic games or simulating an actual NBA season.
As I've mentioned before the biggest problem for David Stern (and one that the NFL didn't have to worry about with it's work stoppage) is the potential loss of fans. The league was in a free fall financially to begin with, the majority of teams playing before disinterested half empty arenas, and this could be the final straw for those others who are on the fence. Millionaires arguing over percentages of profits won't endear themselves to the ordinary fan any more than corn rows and long white t's on the bench did. Except for us, the 1%, the hoops obsessed idiots who watch Hardwood Classics on NBA TV even though they know the outcome or sit through MSG's "March to the Finals" nonsense replays of the 94 Knicks season just to get their jones fixed. Nobody will be crying any tears for us or the extraordinarily wealthy owners and players. So what exactly is icing anyway?
Tuesday, October 11, 2011
Friday, October 7, 2011
Notice something different about us lately? Yeah we've changed. In an effort to keep our look evolving and interesting we've upgraded a little. Unfortunately, being the change hating old men that most of us are, it's taking some getting used to and not everyone at PTU is happy with our makeover. I'm in the pro-new look camp. Hater J and former PTU contributor Bottle are in the decidedly anti-new look camp. I think the new look makes us look sleeker and easier on the eye for all of our readers in the U.S. and India. J and Bottle think it sucks ass.
So, the question is: Where do you the reader who can't find the comment section stand on this new era in PTU? Do you think it looks nicer and more professional or does it confuse you and make you nervous? Are you still trying to figure out how you can register for your Chemical Engineering class on Monday? Let us know how you feel by fiddling around with the comment button until you get frustrated and decide to look at Kat Denning's nipples again. If by some strange chance you can comment, tell us if we should stay with this look or go back to the old PTU that you all loved and/or clicked on by mistake. Thanks for your input and keep struggling to read PTU.
What I'm trying to say in that convoluted title up there is that the contrarian position is not always the right one. Despite what this article and other blogs and experts are saying today to prove their intelligence over the drooling masses Last night, A-rod by all definitions sucked. Whether this was due to nagging effects from his multitude of injuries this season (read: after effects of steroids use) or just his usual postseason suckiness, the fact remains that Alex Rodriguez shit the bed this ALDS. Much like he did in 05, 06, 07 and every season besides the 09 run when I'm convinced that either A-Rod was hypnotized by Kate Hudson's magical vagina or he upped his steroids dosage. Yes, Girardi's overmanaging style was again partly to blame and there was a whole list of other players who were awful this series, but a great deal of the blame falls on A-Rod's broad, useless shoulders. That might be unfair to judge him because of his contract and celebrity status, but there's a reason he garners all that attention and money: he's a supremely talented player who's put up monstrous career numbers. We expect great things out of him in the playoffs and the guy just hasn't produced in the big spots outside of that one season. Break down all the sabermetrics you want, debate the existence of "clutch", however you look at it he's failed in big moments. I nicknamed him "smoke break" a couple years ago because once he came up to bat you knew that you weren't going to miss anything if you stepped out for a Newport. Obviously baseball is a team sport and more than any other sport the final score relies on factors that an individual can't control like pitching and defense that one player can't overcome. I understand that, Joe Posnanski. But if we give out MVP awards (of which A-Rod's won a couple) based partly on team success, then the individual should also take some heat when the team is unsuccessful.
Yankees' playoff series always seem to end with A-Rod striking out, and this is because they actually do end that way more often than not. Sportscenter ran a graphic about all of the past playoff series that have ended with Rodriguez at the plate. Last night was no different as he struck out swinging in every big moment last night and the one time he was on base he failed to score despite what looked like a deep enough base hit to drive in a run (Rob Thomson held him up there and he seemed to be laboring a little while running so he gets a pass I suppose). But this doesn't excuse the rest of the series when he got precisely zero hits besides one when the game was already out of reach on Tuesday. Even the Tigers were cracking jokes.
So obviously the entire team is to blame (not to mention there is another team that is playing, wants to win and doesn't know that we have to win the World Series every year). I understand an article or blog post that says "A Rod sucks" isn't all that interesting and But, let us vent some frustration on the most famous player on the team and the one who we have signed for an astronomical price for the next 6 years of our lives. He was not good. In fact, he sucked. And I don't feel like an idiot for saying that.
Thursday, October 6, 2011
First of all, let me just say RIP Steve Jobs. He was a truly visionary thinker and possible genius who made all of our lives more enjoyable through his technological advancements and he died way too young. My heart goes out to his family. That being said, can we maybe cool it a bit with the overly dramatic, weepy reactions? The man has been gone for a few hours and already the Internet and TV is crowded with people tearfully recounting the first time they got ipods and making comparisons to the day that JFK or Martin Luther King Jr. was shot. These folks are even admitting this is like losing a religious figure. Where were you when you first heard that Steve Jobs died? Did you somehow go on with your miserable life, even now having the knowledge that nothing will ever be the same? Did you crawl up into a ball and await the coming apocalypse that this tragedy will bring? Jobs did great things, but creating a really cool mp3 player and cell phone is not the same thing as working for the rights of an entire race of people or being the first American president to be assassinated in a century.
Jobs' status as the leader of a technological revolution seems to have some people confused into thinking that he was an actual leader of something, when he was really just a guy who was very good at what he did. What he did was create user friendly, really cool technology for the masses. Let's not over react here though. He never cured a disease or (as far as I know) worked against social injustices. He made it so we could play Angry Birds wherever we wanted and listen to the new Jay-z album wherever we please without carrying around those clunky CD cases. It wasn't like we were oppressed before though. He made our lives more comfortable, but not in the face of evil forces who were against him or us (except maybe PC users) nor did he change anyone's life in a spiritual way . He made most of our lives a little more enjoyable. For that we owe him big time, but let's please save the teary memorials.
Tuesday, October 4, 2011
We're no stranger to AJ Burnett hating (just like any other Yankee fan who's paid attention these past three seasons) but we will surely be pulling for the hot headed right hander to regain his composure tonight. In the biggest game of the year, could it get any more tailor made for Lupica schlock? You couldn't script it any better.
It seems like one of those corny sports movie cliches, the embattled big money former star who's lost his way in New York only to find redemption in the most important game of his team's season with an entire city expecting him to fail. Call up ESPN films, I smell an Emmy for Hung's Thomas Jane as the misunderstood AJ. In reality, tonight's game is far more likely to end in a middling effort on both pitcher's parts than The Natural type theatrics. As much as Burnett has been a colossal fuck-up for the majority of his Yankee tenure, the guy on the other side isn't so great either. Rick Porcello sounds like he should be either working as a porn producer or pizzeria owner but he's really just a very mediocre inconsistent pitcher for the Tigers. If the Yankees can snap out of their offensive funk of the past 2 games (especially that gaping hole in the middle of the lineup wearing numbers 13 and 25) then they should be able to get AJ some cushioning. Now that they're not facing Jesus Verlander or heavy rains they should be able to return to regular season slugging form (you would hope).
And if AJ can somehow turn in a solid performance to bring the series back to the Bronx it will be as dramatic as any bloody sock or other great playoff performance you can think of. While I don't expect to see AJ dropping to his knees with tears streaming down his cheeks as the entire city of New York explodes in cheers as that music from Dragon plays in the background, I'll settle for 6 or 7 solid innings. That might be enough in real life tonight.
Chris Christie is expected to officially announce today that he will not be running for President, and with him goes the hope for another barrier to be broken. Maybe the American dream isn't available to everyone. Despite the many ideological differences, there is one thing that unites the left and right. That's right, we are once again not electing the fat guy.
History is bursting with full figured Commander in Chiefs; Teddy Roosevelt spoke softly and carried a big gut around and Grover Cleveland didn't look like he passed up too many lunches. This is a different time, though, when the pudgy POTUS is but a distant dream of typically obese American children everywhere. Take a look at our last 10 presidents: not a chubbster among them. These pipe cleaners look like they've been starving themselves like supermodels or those kids in the Sally Struthers commercials, not leaders of the free world. In fact, one of them is actually an African! Clinton was a little doughy, but he's nobody's idea of a fat guy. Will we ever see a portly, Christie sized man in the oval office? I doubt it will happen in our lifetime. Nowadays, we like our political leaders pleasant to look at, with nice teeth, an affable but not goofy demeanor, intelligent but not a brainy elitist, and a guy that you could have a beer with but doesn't look like he routinely attends keg parties and taps it himself. The American voting hierarchy is as such:
- White Protestant
- White Catholic
- Mixed Black and White Protestant
- Black Protestant or Catholic
- White Woman
- Black woman
- Ralph Nader
And that's it. We've still got a way to go before we knock off the fully black protestant or catholic , any kind of woman and then the Chinese President. Christie seems to understand this, bowing out gracefully before the voting public reminds him of how far he's let himself go. His Jersey guy every man shtick only goes so far. Nixon's popularity famously waned after a particularly sweaty debate in which his dripping face contrasted with the pretty boy looks of JFK. Imagine Christie under some hot lights. Ted Striker trying to land the plane comes to mind.
So, will the discrimination against rotund guys in politics ever end? Probably not. Physical appearance is a piece of the puzzle, but it is a very big piece. Trying to fit a jolly, plump guy in just isn't going to work in America. Next year's candidates and the future leaders of tomorrow better not cancel their Bally's memberships just yet. Let Christie be a lesson to us all.
Monday, October 3, 2011
L magazine, that pocket sized authority on all things hip and pretentious, recently ran their feature on the Brooklyn Neighborhood power rankings. I quickly glanced at it, so I'm not sure what their ranking system was. As opposed to New York magazine (which is also hip and pretentious but at least journalistically thorough) who had a complicated metric system to break down the order of their neighborhood rankings, L seems to just have ranked these in descending order from "where most of their art school classmates are moving" to "where most of their art school classmates are moving out of" to finally "where no one they would be caught dead speaking to would step foot in" aka Brownsville. Taking our inspiration from them, PTU proudly presents the Douchiest Neighborhoods in Brooklyn Power Rankings.
5. Park Slope
Park Slope held down the distinction as the first BK neighborhood to really make it for many years. By make it, I mean make it insufferable for normal Brooklynites to walk through without feeling like they've been transported to a land of yuppie couples, faux bohemian types (fauxhemian?) and of course, strollers. It's kind of a cliche now to make fun of Park Slope's stroller infestation (it's been parodied on at least 2 HBO comedies) but it doesn't make it any less true and annoying for us single bozos who hate children.
4. Bay Ridge
Sorry, Bay Ridge. We here at PTU have kind of a love hate relationship with you (M@d $cientist, you may want to skip ahead). You're still the most affordable safe neighborhood in Brooklyn, and you still provide so many memories for all of us. But you also are home to at least 3 active terror cells and some of the most douchiest fuck sticks this side of the Jersey Shore. Which is worse: the degenerate Arabs who wish they were Puerto Rican and while away their years on this Earth by hanging out in front of car services and McDonalds, hoping to one day grow up to be the next home-grown Jihadist just like their dirtbag parents or the spray tanned asshole with the Pauly D haircut and the Ed Hardy wardrobe that works out 9 times a week to stand around in Salty Dog and score blowjobs from Guidette nursing students? It's a toss-up for sure.
Bushwick was always regarded as one of those neighborhoods that you didn't want to wander through at any time, both for the local gang bangers or the Hasidic population. But over the past few years, those reviled hipsters have invaded East Williamsburg, bringing with them higher rents that their disappointed fathers will pay and the kind of "cool" buzz that gives unemployed organic smoothie makers a hard on in their skinny jeans. Bushwick Bill must be so ashamed.
2. Vinegar Hill
I'm not sure where this is, but it's called Vinegar Hill.
That's right, the reigning champion of douchery, the Muhammad Ali of entitled hipsters, and the biggest reason that Brooklyn style is now considered to be something that looks like this: Williamsburg (or the even douchier nickname Billy Burg). With apologies to Hater J, who lived there pre-hippie takeover, Williamsburg has a couple things going for it; decent bars and restaurants, proximity to Manhattan. But it all pales in comparison to the extreme douche baggery that is on display every day in W'burg. Porkpie hat wearing pussies debating the works of Proust over PBR's and Hasidic Jews double parking make for one of the more annoying experiences you can have in New York. There once was a time that Brooklyn wasn't known for layabout artists and other similar morons, but now you can't separate the two. Brooklyn is hipster douches and there's nothing you can do about it besides write snarky, hate filled blog posts. 2 Broke Girls looks really annoying, too.
DUMBO (douchey acronym), Carrol Gardens (sorry Bottle, but kinda douchey), Sunset Park (perp douches), Brooklyn Heights (rich douches).