Monday, October 31, 2005

The things people in Pittsburgh worry about... If it's not the zombies, it's the robots.

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Updating our previous story, it appears that the Pittsburgh Xplosion has managed to rent out the Civic Arena for 14 home games.
And now a word problem:
Given their pricing structure, courtside $55, low end D level tickets $12.50, it costs approximately $15,000 an event, and last year they seemed to average about 300, how fast do I have to get to a game to enable me to see it before they fold?

The first game is Sunday, and the Steelers play Monday night. Talk me in to going, folks. I'd bring a camera.

Thursday, October 20, 2005

ABA Mania Returns

We have a new team, the Xplosion, and a new coach, who hopefully won't die on us during the first game, and a new arena.

You know, it would be good if they get the arena contract down and signed before they promote it. Wouldn't you think?
Were I Keith Olbermann commenting on what I had previously written, (And with the whole Michael Jackson Puppet Theater, I'm not sure he doesn't) I'd say that the most recent story out of Minnesota means that Mr. Scrabble Dictionary has failed Mr. Wlf yet again.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

People have been asking me when I'm going to drop FraughtWatch on the Minnesota Vikings. Like this email:

Dear DEK,
when are u going to drop fraughtwatch on the minnesota vikings?


Well, fhqwgads, I was late to the party on this one. I should have seen it coming with the Whizzinator, excuse me, ORIGINAL Whizzinator, thing, I should have seen it when they let Randy Moss go, I should have seen it when something Zygi Wilf bought the team (incidentally, I believe I saw the name "Zygi Wlf" once before. I just returned the rack to the Scrabble bag.) In my defense, I did at one point name my fantasy team "Viking Draft Room", so I wasn't missing the carnival of whimsy that has been the Unfrozen Caveman Ball Coach era. So I won't post them up, because I missed. However, I am not without empathy, but I'm directing it these days to the folks who spent the better part of a year developing "Blitz: The League". After all, not only did they lose their rights to use the NFL franchises, they decided to go with story development from the ESPN show Playmakers, only to have real life become even more, shall we say, richly dramatic. So should we just start calling the Vikings the Cougars?

Monday, October 10, 2005

Even in my darkest and most evil thoughts, I have my limits. And I', just slackjawed at the ability of folks to miss the subtext, or assume the subtext is the actual text, especially in advertising. The latest example occurring in my favorite crazy-ass European country, Belgium. They've decided that the best way to stimulate funding for UNICEF is to firebomb the Smurfs. I'll repeat that for those of you who had cognitive dissonance click in. They've decided that the best way to stimulate funding for UNICEF is to firebomb the Smurfs. (And yes, taken out of context "UNICEF firebombs the Smurfs" DOES sound like some sort of expansion to Rock Paper Scissors gone horribly awry) This shouldn't be funny. This really shouldn't be funny. What they're trying to state is a good idea and all that, but all I get out of this is that the advertising agency really just wanted to bomb the living crap out of the Smurfs. And I now have the image of the inevitable war crimes tribunal, where they're asking Col. Jessup (RET) who ordered the code blue and why all the smurfs were la-la-ing the Ride of the Valkyries. Yeah, I'm messed up, but clearly I learned it from watching you!

Saturday, October 08, 2005

My state... Even when the Supreme Court forces them to make it easier, they make it harder.

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

In this preview of the Arizona Fall League they note the movement of the Scottsdale Scorpions to Surprise, Arizona, while the ballpark at Scottsdale's refurbished. What's not noted here is the colossal marketing opportunity available in the move. I mean, the logo possibility of a Scorpion lunging out from a gift wrapped package would be absolutely tremendous. SURPRISE! SCORPIONS!

Monday, October 03, 2005

In an effort to avoid the inevitable obsession about fantasy football that the bye week puts upon me, I went out to the final Pirates game of the year. (Let's face it, if I didn't I'd actually have been hanging onto the notion that Neil Rackers is now the most important part of my team, which is alternately a cry for help or the sound of a seal breaking.) Part of the charm of the last home game is Prize day, when items that failed to sell in the regular season were given away. I didn't get anything, but I have to note some of the more intriguing things offered.

A Pirate themed ATV.
The paintings made by all the players as their opening intro cards.
A free buffet at Cici's Pizza
A Danbury Mint model of Forbes Field
A signed bat by pitcher and impending contract albatross Mark Redman.
And best of all, a game used bat by reliever John Grabow. This one amused me because I think, as a situational lefty, he couldn't have had more than 5 at-bats. (Checking... Oh, sweet, he's had 1 at bat in three years!)

While this was fine comedy in and of itself, and the pierogie race featured the return of the long-exiled Potato Pete, who proposed to Jalapeno Hanna, disrupting her race to defeat the obviously juiced-up Sauerkraut Saul, the standout comedy feature of the game was Did You Know... I've been critical of Did You Know... and its many iterations in the past, mostly in the cases when I felt it should have been titled Did You Care?, but for the game yesterday, it was knowing, brilliant self-parody. I neither knew, nor cared to know any of the following:

Craig Wilson never misses an episode of Survivor (This explains the DL this year.)
Tike Redman is planning a trip to Jamaica in December.
Jose Bautista plans on doing nothing during the first week of October. (About right there, Jose, though you did get a hit, screwing up your plans.)
Michael Restovich is a big fan of the Minnesota Vikings.
Rob Mackowiak is thinking about getting a German shepherd puppy. ("thinking" about it?)
Jack Wilson plans on going trick or treating with his son[Darth Vader] and his daughter[a sheep] (Okay, Pittsburghers, if you see Darth Vader, a sheep, and somebody who looks like Jack Wilson, don't be alarmed.)

and finally, the best one by far. The one that was so good they did it when he was a defensive substitute rather than risk that he might not bat:

J. J. Furmaniak will be refereeing high school basketball games in Chicago.

Pirates 2006 -- Because you want to know if he got the puppy.