Wednesday, October 22, 2008

I don't care if your legs start achin'...

...I'm a California ManNot! But at least I've been there...

RIGHTEOUS BUCKS
It seems that the Republican National Committee hath spent over $150,000 on Sarah Palin’s wardrobe and other “campaign accessories” since she became John McCain’s bitch—I mean, running mate.  This included 75 grand at a Nieman-Marcus in the Twin Cities, nearly 42 grand at another one in St. Louis and $4,100 for “makeup and hair consulting.”  And these people have the nerve to call themselves conservatives?

Now I realize that the options for different styles might be a tad limited back home in Moose Twit, Alaska (they don’t even have a Wal-Mart up there yet, do they?), but surely Ms. Winky-Dink already had some nice threads of her own, being a politician and all.  Apparently $150,000 must not buy much these days, because some of the stuff I’ve seen her wear looks like K-Mart blue-light specials to me.  And four grand for makeup and hair?  The woman’s in her mid-40s and doesn’t know how to do her makeup by now?  And how much tutoring does a woman require to learn how to wad her hair up in a scrunchie (sp?) and call it hairstyle?  What a fucking waste of money…

The GOP claims that the clothes will eventually be donated to charity.  Yeah, right—I’ll believe that on the day Ted Nugent does a cover version of “It’s Hard To Be Humble”…

COUNTING THE DAYS…
Hang in there, kids, this interminable election campaign is almost over, thankfully.  Doesn’t it seem like it’s gone on for like three years, or what?  Some states are allowing early voting now, which I think is a step in the right direction, but I’d like to see more changes on how we elect a President.  First off, this Electoral College thing should’ve been scrapped ages ago.  The U.S. was a much different country and not even a quarter of the size it is now when the EC was conceived, and there was a time when it served a purpose, but now it’s as obsolete as Big Band Music and Edsels.  I find it inconceivable in our modern-day world that a candidate can win the Popular Vote, yet not be elected President.

Another thing that’s always bugged me—why do we always hold elections on a weekday when most people are working?  Why can’t the polls stay open later in the evening (until say, 10:00) when people have more free time?  Better yet, why not conduct elections on Saturdays (or even entire weekends) when most everybody can get out and there would be no more excuses for not voting?

YEAH, THAT’LL FIX HIM, ALRIGHT!
This week, local K.C. radio sports talk hack Neal Jones is encouraging his listeners to all wear green t-shirts to the next Chefs home game that read “FIRE CARL” (in reference to GM Carl Peterson).  Sure, that’ll really get the message across and turn the team around.  His rationale is if the shirts are green and have no Chiefs logos or profanity on them, they’ll stand out and the Thought Police at Arrowhead can’t possibly ask the fans to remove them.  Okey-fine…

I have a slightly more devious idea that would be infinitely more effective—encourage people to cease renewing their season tickets with the Chefs!  A near-empty stadium on opening day, 2009 would speak louder than a bunch of crappy t-shirts ever could.  If I were a Chiefs season ticket holder, I wouldn’t spend another dime on this team until owner Clark Hunt cleans house in the front office and the coaching staff.

HERMSPEAK
Check out the following quote from Chefs head coach Herm Edwards yesterday regarding perpetual dumbass running back Larry Johnson:

"Decisions of all that will take place when it has to be made...I don't have to make a decision on who's starting, not starting.  That's kind of where that's at.  Whatever I do, hopefully I think you know me by now, people know me by now, I'm going to do the right thing for the football team.  That's where it stands with me."

I have never seen anyone who can use so many words and not say a damn thing quite like Herm can.  He’s sort of a hybrid of a politician and an evangelist.  I’ve tried giving Edwards the benefit of the doubt, but his shuck-and-jive routine with the media is wearing really thin on me, and I find it hard to believe he really means half the stuff he says anymore.  I’m ready for the Bill Cowher era to begin in Kansas City ASAP…

And the cloud over Arrowhead Stadium grows darker by the day, as today the Chefs had to put QB Damon Huard on the Injured Reserve list in addition to starter Brodie Croyle, who we already knew was out for the year.  I'd volunteer to help out at the QB situation, but I'm afraid I'd look like Peter Griffin trying to elude those defensive tackles.  The Chefs' mascot, K.C. Wolf, may well have to suit up on Sunday.

As for Johnson, it’s pretty obvious that he’s on the verge of becoming another Pacman Jones, as this latest incident involving him spitting his drink all over some gal at a local nightclub is becoming a trendlike four times in the last five years he's been accused of doing something uncouth with a woman at a bar late at night.  He got up in front of the media and gave some half-hearted apology to the team and the fans today, but I didn't buy any of it.  LJ needs to quit hanging out with his buddy Jay-Z and his homey entourage and stay home a little more and read his playbook, methinks.  With the economy being what it is today, it’s now even more galling to see talented athletes like Jones and Johnson piss their money and careers away that others would give their left nuts to have.

REGRETS, HE’S HAD A FEW…
Speaking of talented athletes who pissed their money and career away, the poster child for that movement, Jose Canseco, admitted on A&E Monday that maybe he shouldn’t have written that tell-all book about steroid usage in baseball because now everybody’s mad at him.  Well, duh!  This guy was a whiner when he played, he was a whiner when he retired, and he’s an even bigger whiner now that he’s broke and can’t get it up anymore.  Cry me a friggin’ river, Jose…

BUH-BYE!
You won’t see me shedding any tears over this week’s passing of self-appointed fashion critic Mr. Blackwell.  Although some of the people this insufferable twit targeted with his verbal barbs deserved it (Madonna, Bjork, et al), many of them didn’t (Renee Zellweger, Meryl Streep, etc.), and I’ve never understood why he was so revered in Hollywood.  I always wanted to say to him, “Who asked you, anyway?”  Good riddance to an asshole, I say…

THAT CAT NAMED HERCULEZ!
Congrats to K.C. Wiz(ards) player Herculez Gomez for scoring his first goal with the team in their victory against San Jose on Saturday.  Good timing too, as it turned out to be a game-winner in what they call "extra time" in MLS that may well propel our local futbol team into the postseason.  Mamma Klump would be so proudHerculez!  Herculez!  Herculez!

MY SERIES PROGNOSTICATION
I say Tampa Bay Rays in six games on the World Serious.  Or as football guru Mike Ditka called them the other day, the "Tampa Ray Bays"!  Nothing personal against the Philliesthey actually seem to have more talent on paperbut TB has been bucking the trend all season, so why pick against them now?  Should be a fun series, no matter what, and I like the fact that either a team who's never won it all or a team that's long overdue for a championship will prevail, not to mention that neither the Red Sox or Yankees are not involved.

A little historical tidbit for youtonight will mark the first time a World Series game has ever been played in a former National Hockey League venue.  Easy to forget that Tropicana Field (aka Florida Suncoast Dome) was once home to the Tampa Bay Lightning back in the '90s when they used to draw crowds over 20,000 with alarming frequency when the place was known as the "Thunderdome".

TEARIN’ DOWN THE HOUSE…
Here's a shot of the ongoing demolition of New York’s Shea Stadium.  It’s literally standing room only at Flushing Meadow now…








And here's something you don't see every daytransporting oversized fruit from one ballpark to another!



Sunday, October 19, 2008

Here comes Mr. Bill's blog...

Oh, noooooooo!

LEVI STUBBS, 1936-2008
Sad news on the music front with the passing Friday of Four Tops lead singer Levi Stubbs.  Levi had one of the more distinctive voices in Pop music, and although he was accused of over-emoting at times, Stubbs put such classics as "Reach Out...I'll Be There", "Bernadette" and "Standing In The Shadows Of Love" over the top with his peerless vocals.  Sadly, Levi was forced to retire about eight years ago because of declining health with strokes and cancer.  He was also known as the voice of "Audrey II" in the 1986 Steve Martin film Little Shop of Horrors.  Rest in peace, Levi...

NEAL HEFTI, 1922-2008
Similar to the late Earle Hagen, who passed away a few months back, you may not know the name, but you know of this man's work if you watched TV at all in the '60s and '70s.  Neal Hefti was a jazz musician/composer who came up with two of the most distinctive TV show themes of all-time, "Batman" and "The Odd Couple".  Hefti passed away last weekend of natural causes.

MIKE LIVINGSTON, WHERE ARE YOU?!?
As I type, I am watching what is becoming a weekly Sunday ritual around these parts as el Chiefos are being stomped by the Tennessee Titans at the 'Head, during which K.C.'s "quarterback of the future"—one Brodie Croyle—went out of the season with a knee injury in the first half.  Back-up Damon Huard is now out with a hand injury as well.  Somebody get Steve DeBerg, Steve Fuller or Bill Kenney on the phone right away!  Joe Montana's not doing anything these days, is he?  Even Todd Blackledge or (gulp!) Steve Bono would be a step in the right direction.  If nothing else, the Chefs are turning the "three-and-out" into an art form this season.  That's okay, though—I picked up the Titans defense, as well as their kicker for my fantasy team this week.

Btw, John, my good friend, if I'm still being too cynical for you and it irritates you that much, then don't read my blog anymore—I'm cynical, therefore for I am...

M.U. = P.U.!
Sad to say, but the Missouri Tigers just can't get quite over the hump—as I've feared—and got smoked by Texas last night 56-31 in Austin.  It was 35-0 at halftime and Missouri looked like—hate to say this—the Chefs.  Kansas looked no better against Oklahoma in Norman yesterday, either.

GET A NEW RUG, ST. LOUIE!
I was rather bemused while watching the highlights of the Cowboys-Rams game today in St. Lou at how ugly their FieldTurf playing surface is at the Ram Dome.  I haven't seen anything this hideous since the "Jungle Room" at Graceland.  Watch "SportsCenter" on ESPN tonight and you'll see what I mean...

HEIDI-HEIDI HO!
Interesting match-up in the NFL today as the New York Jets travel to Oakland to play the Raiders in the almost-40th anniversary of the famed "Heidi Game" of 1968.  For the uninitiated, on November 17, 1968, the Jets and Raiders played a very exciting game that New York was on the verge of winning 32-29 with 1:06 remaining on the clock, but some crazy shit happened during the final 66 seconds, and the Raiders won the game 43-32, but most of the nation didn't get to see the end of the game because NBC cut away to its regularly-scheduled broadcast of the childrens' show "Heidi" at 7PM, Eastern time.  Irate viewers blew out the switchboards in Gotham City, and because of the tumult this thing caused, the networks haven't cut away from football broadcasts (or those of any other sport) until their conclusion since.  What I find cool about this game today is it's being played on the same field and both team's uniforms are virtually identical to those worn in 1968.  Too bad Joe Namath and Daryle Lamonica can't still suit up...

The funniest story I ever heard about this game was when Jets coach Weeb Ewbank received a postgame phone call in the locker room from his wife, congratulating him on his "victory", to which he responded, "What the hell you talking about?  We lost the #^%&*@@~ game!"

IT'S A GAS, GAS, GAS!
When I returned from California back in late August, gas was still priced at around $3.66 a gallon in the K.C. area.  Today, not even two months later, you can fill up for $2.35 a gallon!  That's a difference of $1.31 a gallon in less in barely seven weeks.  Don't get me wrong, I'm not complaining, but something ain't right here.  Why did the price of gas ever have to be that high in the first place?

CLASSIC MISHEARD LYRIC #99
"Success Story"—THE WHO (1975)  "I'm your fairy manager...you shall play at Carnegie Hall!"  I had trouble making out what the mighty Ox said here during his little spoken passage.  I thought he said, "I'm you film manageryou shall play a comic role..."  Big Johnnie Twinkle was a little hard to understand at times...

HYPOCRISY, 101
Very disgusted on this end to hear that the new AC/DC album due out Tuesday will only be available only at your local Wal-Mart store for two reasons:  A) That AC/DC is following the lead of The Eagles in succumbing to this corporate bullshit in the first place, and B) that Wally-World would even want to be involved in promoting a heavy metal act in their ultra-conservative/├╝ber-Christian marketplace.  After all, these are the same people who banned those veritable heathens Judas Priest from their music shelves not so long ago, and would only dare to stock anything as edgy as the New Christy Minstrels, Donny Osmond, John Denver and Yanni.  Hell, even the Partridge Family and ABBA would've been deemed too satanic for these sanctimonious pussies back in the day.  A pox on both entities here...

DOMO ARIGATO? NO THANKS, MR. ROBOTO!
After reading Styx bassist Chuck Panozzo's biography, I decided to rent the Styx concert DVD Caught Live In The Act from 1984 that chronicled the 1983 Kilroy Was Here tour.  After 25 years, I'd forgotten how truly heinous this thing was!  Looking back now, I think I was pretty kind to this debacle in my review of this show in "Concert Trek - Episode 5"--upon further review, it was worse that I remembered with the stilted dialogue and hackneyed acting.  I have no doubt that Panozzo and guitarists Tommy Shaw and James "J.Y." Young just cringe when they watch this abomination today.  In his book, CP admitted that he would just sit quietly with his bass offstage and not even watch the first ten minutes of the show while Shaw and Dennis DeYoung hammed it up for the audience.  DeYoung's Broadway-style theater elements were definitely not a good mix at all, and it's no mystery as to why this once-mighty band fell apart not soon afterwards.  The DVD wasn't totally wretched, though—it also includes nearly all of Styx's music videos from the '70s and '80s (some of which are quite good) as a bonus feature, which I found far more entertaining that the feature presentation.