Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Catch-up and Rambles

Things continue to revert back to normal. Lots and lots of writing being done on my travels in Spain and by the end of the week I hope to be approaching agents again. I approached over seventy-five for Marilyn’s Story but I think this one is much more marketable. People actually seem to like to read about travels abroad and not so much about cancer. Marilyn’s story will be self published and self marketed by me as soon as one final person has time to finish making corrections to it and then I rework those corrections.

So, a couple of interesting things. Five years ago I was working at my local high school and had become friends with a lot of the teachers. One of them comes in to have lunch with Len and I. He works with “troubled” kids and tells this lovely story.

“So I saw “kid I used to work with a few years ago” this weekend.”
“Yeah, how’s he doing?”
“Just got back from Iraq. Said he served three tours there and was signing up for a fourth.”
‘What? Why would he do that?”
“I asked him the same thing. He sighed and looked at me and replied “You know… I just like to shoot people.”


I can’t seem to find a way to tell the story about the lesbians in the park in the way I want it to come out so I’m going to have leave off that for now. Sorry guys.

Magic Online – Well, I’ve been trying to play it, but I can’t figure out how to trade with the bots I used to trade with all the time, can’t figure out how to replay premium tournament matches to see what’s winning these days and I find the interface just frustrating and awful. I’ve seen some practice matches and looked over my cards and that’s about it so far.

Wendy and I head to Greece on the first of October and we have both been dieting hard so we look good in the pictures I hope to post. Yes, I’m very vain in pictures these days. I’m down about five lbs, same with Wendy. My braces are finally off, now I just have retainers unlike any I have seen before. They are like a clear plastic athletic mouth guard, molded just for my teeth. The first three days I had them, it took me ten minutes to get them off they were so tight. I was sure I was going to pull a tooth or my bridge out. They fit in and come out much smoother now just as the dentist said they would after a few days. Getting my teeth whitened again tomorrow to remove the stains the braces left. Then I think my transformation into the ultimate metrosexual will be complete! Wait, scratch that, need to get back to my push-ups so I actually have a chest again. Ah, the never ending goals.

We have been watching a few things and are anxious for the fall TV season to start. We love “Top Chef” and that has been amazing this season. Never before do I think there has been a season where you already know whom is going to be in the finale. Jennifer, the two brothers and Kevin. Betcha anything. The Ultimate Fighter Season 10 has also started and I look forward to an exciting season. All the guys on the show are giants and men. Adults. Most of them are mature so I look forward to a season without childish idiot kids looking for their ten minutes of fame by being an asshole on the show. No, these are grown men, four of whom have been in the NFL.

We anxiously await “Dollhouse”, “Desperate Housewives,” “Grey’s Anatomy,” and “Lie to me” and have already seen “Bones” and “Fringe.”

Oh yeah, we started “Mad Men” and are watching the first season of that. Was it really like that in those days; men drinking all day, smoking and laughing in offices while huge rooms full of secretaries diligently worked away?

For movies we saw “State of Play” and that was okay. Not great but worth the rental.

Wendy and I have watched “Coraline” twice now. It is an animated film but definitely not for kids. The beginning with the fingers made of needles, as the credits flash on screen is stunning and grabs your interest immediately. As with all things Neil Gaiman, it didn’t disappoint. It was fascinating, terrifying, unique and bizarre. Not too bizarre, just bizarre enough. Quirky. As Chris said in the comments section – “I don't know about you but Coraline scared the bejeezus out of me. That is NOT a kid’s movie! Mom turns into… (spoiler deleted). I have seen stuff that would turn grown men white but that movie literally gave me nightmares.”

The movie is pretty intense, filled with little Easter eggs and inside jokes. It was a massive risk and the production was insane as well as the trivia to the movie. I thought it was very sophisticated animation but it is in fact stop motion and hundreds of dolls mixed with computer effects. You can check out what I’m talking about here at IMDB and Wikipedia.

I wouldn’t show it to my kids but I’d recommend it to almost anyone else

Is “Zach and Mirri make a Porno” the worst Kevin Smith movie ever made, or does such humor just no longer appeal to me? It got mediocre review but I have yet to see a Kevin Smith movie I didn’t like. This one I couldn’t even finish. I turned it off a half an hour into it.

Wendy is making me wonder why I watch the UFC. I watch the PPV’s; she asks me how the fights went and more often than not I say “Everyone I wanted to win lost.”

“Isn’t that always the way it is?”

Hmmm. Why am I watching this again?

I still have a lot of favorites that win (Nate Quarry, Shane Carwin, Diego Sanchez, GSP, Mike Swick) but it blows when everyone you cheered for at an event loses. Which happens sometimes; like, say, this weekend.

Someone pointed out on the forums I read that we may have entered an era where the champs remain the champs for a long time. The champions dominate everyone these days.

Who can beat Penn at 155? Possibly no one (although I hope Diego tools him.)
Who can beat GSP at 170 ? No one. Ever.
Who can beat Anderson Silva – No one.
Who can beat Lyoto Machida? Again, no one I can think of.
Who can beat Brock Lesnar? Possibly Shane Carwin, possibly not. If he can’t, no one can.

Below are some predictions I wrote last week to a friend of mine –

I’m not that thrilled with this weekend’s show but some matches intrigue me. I haven’t seen Vitor Belfort fight in 10 years. He used to have amazing hand speed and be able to knock people out in seconds. As always, I think Rich takes this, but don’t know as honestly, I have no idea how good Vitor is these days.

Cro Cop has had some amazing fights. I always look forward to seeing him fight. I still think he loses this one though. He’s just not the Cro Cop of old that used to left high kick people’s heads into the upper rows.

I love Frank Trigg. I always hope he wins. I think Koscheck will just do another lay and pray victory. I just hate that guy and no matter how much Rogan tells me his stand-up has improved, I don’t see it. I see it with Diego. I see it with Florian. I see it with other fighters. Koscheck looks like the same overhand looping sloppy punches he’s been throwing since he started the game and doesn’t even know how to throw a kick. God I hope Trigg wins, but he won’t. Koscheck will try a stand up war, get tooled, and go back to his explosive takedowns and lay and pray. Trigg is a great wrestler but he’s not on Koscheck’s level.

Hermes Franca has massively heavy hands. If Griffon wants a stand up war, he’s gonna go to sleep. But when in trouble, I think he will revert to his wrestling background and go for takedowns and lay and pray. Honestly, I have only seen one Tyson Griffon fight and I was bored. That was a long time ago and maybe he’s different now. I do know if he stands with Franca he’ll be asleep in the first round.

I always cheer for Cole Miller. He’s such a very nice guy with amazing JJ. I know nothing about his opponent but he’s 12-0. I expect he’ll get his first loss this weekend. Cole Miller is just too slick on the ground.

In reality it went exactly the opposite of almost everything I predicted.

My boy Rich Franklin lost.
Cro Cop looked like a scared kid. Worse even than I imagined.
Trigg lost to Koscheck (FUCK!) Not only that but he was knocked out in the first round with those sloppy punches I was dissing earlier.
Franca lost to Griffon. Again, due to punches. He stood with Franca and the exact opposite result of what I thought would happen, happened.
Cole Miller lost too.

So I'm 0 for everything in UFC predictions this week.


  1. Chuck Liddell is on Dancing With The Stars this season. My wife watched it last week and said he looked scared to death.

  2. I don't know if you read "Sherdog" or not but they have a forum community in the hundreds of thousands of MMA fans. Someone posted a poll about "Who is your favorite dancer this year" and Chuck had 1% of the vote. The Sherdog community rallied and the last time I looked he had 56% of the vote. :-)


  3. Jamie, what's your MODO Screen name? If I'm on when you are I'd be happy to try and help explain some of the interface and give you the scoop on the bot scene. Feel free to pm me in game: LukeHeinz57

  4. From a buddy of mine regarding Chuck on Dancing:

    "he was afraid his dance partner might make a fast move and accidentally bump him in the jaw - thereby knocking him out cold."