Welcome! (I guess...)

For those of you who by some extremely unlikely set of circumstances happened to stumble upon this page, I apologize to you. For those of you who intentionally came to this page - yikes! As the title of the weblog indicates, these are my Ramblings About Whatever. There is a chance that I will ramble about just about anything (as I am in this introduction), but only a select few topics will actually make this site. Enjoy! (I guess...)

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

The Subterfuge - Part XIX

As Bella stared out the window into the moonless night sky, she could not help but think about Edward. She thought longingly of him; where was he, what could he be doing right at this moment? Bella was of course thankful for the friendship and protection that Jacob and his friends had provided, but this was not enough. The Cullens had become Bella’s family and she wished to see them and be with them once again, if only for just one more time. But in her heart of hearts, she knew that none of the other Cullens really mattered; her absent love Edward Cullen was the only thing that mattered in the world.

As she sat there, hovering between fantasy and reality, she faintly heard what sounded like a knock on the door. Shaken from her daze, she walked downstairs and to the door to see who it could be. She wasn’t expecting anyone and in fact believed that she would be completely alone for the night. However, as she walked toward the door, her spirits started to lift with thoughts that maybe, just perhaps this could be her love Edward returning to her.

Overtaken by these hopes as she arrived at the door, anxiousness found a strong grip upon her, causing her to momentarily struggle with the locks. After what seemed an eternity to her of trying to negotiate this barrier between herself and her love, she finally opened the door. She had to squint for this was the night of the new moon and so this celestial body afforded no help in illuminating the dark sky. But then finally a tall figure walked toward the door.

But Bella quickly realized that she had no idea who this person was who entered the home. However, she certainly recognized the two figures that he carried, one in each hand. In one hand there was Jacob, and in the other hand, there was Edward, her true love. They both appeared to be completely lifeless and as this man tossed them effortlessly upon the floor, Bella could see that neither gave a hint of stirring. Stunned, she finally looked up at the man and asked, “Who are you?”

“My name is Viktor, but I shall do the talking now,” he said. “These pathetic abominations are what pass for vampires and lycans these days?! This weakness that has pervaded both species while I slept is unacceptable. I shall rally my Death Dealers and put an end to this debasement that has occurred to the immortals.”

Trying hard but unsuccessfully to fight back tears, Bella said, “He’s…he’s not moving… Did you kill Edward? Did you kill them?”

Viktor replied, “I did not give you permission to speak. But I will answer your question because you’ll be dead just as they are soon enough. But wait, perhaps I should grant you immortality, though you are not nearly as attractive or tough as my beloved daughter Sonja or my dear Selene. Perhaps you can be trained… I did kill them because they were weak. That vampire, and I hesitate to call him such, was a disgrace. He clearly spent more time applying makeup to his face and putting product in his hair than he ever did training to destroy the lycans!”

“But, but…” Bella stammered, now fully in tears.

Viktor continued, seemingly ignoring her, “I shall once again make the Death Dealers a force to be reckoned with in this world! We will hunt down these wretched cereal box-vampires and make the species strong once again! And we shall exterminate this pathetic rodent-like strain that these lycans have become. My old foe Lucian, I am thankful that you did not have to live to witness what has become of your brethren…”

“What, what…” Bella said, stunned.

Viktor now turned his attention back to the young lady and with his fangs elongated approached…

Epilogue: And what became of Bella next? The answer is unclear, but also irrelevant. Viktor, long thought dead, was able to reassemble his race of Death Dealers and was able to lead them, quite effortlessly, in wiping out the weak vampires like the Cullens that had infested the world. He then just as easily led them in destroying the lycans forever. With the task complete, Viktor sat upon his throne and contemplated his accomplishment. He thought about the ease in which it was all done (only taking eight days), and briefly longed for the time when he truly faced a formidable challenge.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

The Subterfuge - Part XVIII

We’re just moments away from the opening bell pitting East versus West. In the red corner, the newcomer on the championship boxing scene, standing 6’5”, and weighing in at 261 lbs is the imposing cyber-trained boxer from the Soviet Union, Ivan Drago! And in the blue corner, the heavy weight champion of the world, hailing from Chicago, Illinois, standing 6’1”, and weighing in at 235 lbs, The Southside Slugger, Clubber Lang!!!

Confused? Unsure about what is to take place and whether this scene is reality or fantasy? Perhaps it has elements of both. And it certainly has elements of the unknown (for you). But soon enough such will not be the case. For soon you will know the answer to the question: what if Sylvester Stallone had not created and starred as the Rocky character in the movies Rocky III and Rocky IV and thus created the completely implausible scenarios in which Rocky Balboa defeated Clubber Lang and Ivan Drago?

Several weeks ago…

While taking a hiatus from boxing for the time being, Clubber Lang was doing what he ordinarily does when not training for a fight, moonlighting as a soldier of fortune in the Los Angeles underground. For those who had a problem for which no one else could help, and if they could find them, Clubber Lang was part of a team that was for hire. But on this day, the team was gathered around the television watching what was sure to be an epic fight between Apollo Creed and Ivan Drago. The team, perhaps out of a deep feeling of patriotism, hated the Soviets and all Communists and so was firmly in the corner of Creed.

But Apollo was not the first choice to battle Drago. The Soviets had sought out the champion of the world, Clubber Lang, but could not find him. Not being able to land Lang, and rather than going with a fight with Rocky Balboa, the Paper Champion, Drago’s camp arranged to fight Apollo Creed, the Master of Disaster and the Count of Monte Fisto. It was not entirely clear why Creed had Balboa in his corner. Many speculated that it was because Balboa was annoyed with constantly having to deal with his whiny wife’s complaints about how her first husband used to beat her and how her brother had had him killed and all kinds of silly stuff that Balboa was never able to completely verify. It was theorized that Balboa finally got sick of it and just needed to get out of the house for a while.

As the Creed-Drago fight was soon to begin, and as Clubber Lang and his team kicked back to watch, all of a sudden the team’s pilot stood up and started screaming hysterically and pointing at the television. When the rest of the team turned to look, they simply saw that the camera was focused on Drago as he was preparing for the opening bell. But it soon became clear that the rest of the team would not be able to ignore the pilot forever, and so they turned the volume all the way down on the television and listened.

What the pilot said largely made no sense, but they could make out the words power, grey, skull, power again, and the pilot kept insisting that Drago had a sword. And the pilot also stated that Drago had spoken all of this in Russian. After clearly giving too much attention to this madness, the rest of the team finally came to their own senses and did the right thing; they gagged and tied up the pilot and focused on the fight.

Soon after the fight began, the team could see that something was going wrong. Creed was getting pummeled by Drago. And then in the second round, Drago knocked Creed down and out forever. Clubber Lang jumped out of his seat and yelled, “Nooooo! It should have been me that beat that has-been Creed!”

To be continued…

Addendum: After watching the rest of the coverage on television where it was confirmed that Creed was dead, the team got around to untying the pilot. As soon as he was no longer gagged, the pilot blurted out, “See, I told you! He took out his sword and pointed it at Apollo and a ray beam shot out at him and Apollo turned into a ferocious green tiger with armor and sharp teeth. Then he, man, he hit him with the sword and Apollo the green tiger went to sleep.” Clubber Lang then punched the pilot.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

The Subterfuge - Part XVII

This is a big week for goats as I’m sure everyone is aware that the movie The Men Who Stare at Goats opens in theaters across the country on Friday. Well, I don’t know a whole lot about the plot – I have shied away from reading any reviews for the film thus far, lest the movie be ruined for me before I have the opportunity to watch it – but from watching the commercials, things don’t go particularly well for the goats. It seems that there are individuals in the movie that have the ability to stare at goats (and hence the name of the film) and have the goats drop dead. Poor goats…

This was unacceptable to me because as you are well aware, I have a huge admiration for goats. So I’ve decided to retell a more uplifting tale of goats, if you’ll indulge me. There once were three goats called the Three Billy Goats Gruff. The Billy Goats Gruff were of varying sizes, and one day the smallest of the three wanted to cross a bridge so that he could eat the grass on the other side. The problem is that there is a powerful troll living under the bridge who eats those who attempt to pass. But this smallest of the Billy Goats Gruff was really hungry and so he approached the bridge. Sure enough, the troll emerged and threatened to eat the goat. The goat, thinking quickly, convinced the troll that he was too small and that the troll would much prefer to eat his bigger goat brother. So the troll allowed the goat to go. Similarly, the middle sized goat approached the bridge and was stopped by the troll and pleaded that troll would much prefer to eat his larger brother. The troll allows this goat to pass as well. Soon the largest of the goats approached and again the troll jumped out, but rather than talk to the troll, this largest goat gored the troll and let him fall into the river. The largest of the goats walked across the river to join his brothers in eating the grass.

Now we’ve always heard that this was the end of the story, but this is utter nonsense. And so the story continues… Soon all of the other goats, not just the Three Billy Goats Gruff, crossed the bridge to join in the delectable grass. However, this is what the troll had planned all along. You see, this was a magical and clever troll (as most trolls are) and certainly couldn’t be outsmarted by creatures such as goats who routinely faint when afraid. After all of the goats were across the river, the troll calmly stood up from where he had fallen in the river. He then stared at the bridge, causing the bridge to explode. The troll was a little bit dejected about losing the bridge under which he had lived for a long time, but he knew that he had gained so much more: an almost unlimited buffet of goats.

Journal Entry: And in another alternate ending to this story, the third of the Three Billy Goats Gruff did actually kill the troll (in this case the troll wasn’t magical because you can’t kill a magical troll) and walked across the bridge to join his brothers. The smaller two goats were of course overjoyed that the troll was dead. However, the largest goat was quite a bit pissed off at his brothers for having sent the troll after him and so he chased them off (or gored them, I can’t remember this part of the story exactly) and enjoyed a life of eating grass all by himself.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

The Subterfuge - Part XVI

As I took a break from watching one of my DVDs the other day, I came across this truly disturbing story. Apparently the Baby Einstein videos and DVDs are completely ineffective in producing the little geniuses that many parents had hoped they would create. It seems that studies have shown that children under the age of two should not be watching any television because it ruins their attention spans. Fascinating. And so I reacted just as you would expect any mature adult to do; I immediately took my Baby Einstein DVD out of the DVD player, marched straight outside, and tossed the DVD into oncoming traffic.

But then I got to thinking. I had realized that if these videos and DVDs truly turned babies into geniuses, people for whom you need a stopwatch to measure their attention spans even before you do any more damage to them by planting them in front of the virtual babysitters that televisions have become, what could they do for me? And the answer is: lots! The evidence is undeniable. The Baby Einstein DVDs did work for me because, and I do not like to boast, I am considerably smarter than your average child under the age of two. Obviously since we have known for years that the quality of education in the US has been on the decline, the source of my clear advantage over toddlers in mental acuity must not be formal education. And so Baby Einstein has made me brilliant, but what should be done about children under the age of two who should not be watching television? I have the solution; children under the age of two need to spend more time learning from me, a genius…or at least more of a genius than most two-year olds.

So it’s quite simple, I’ll be releasing my schedule soon and anytime that it appears that I might be available, you can check with me to see if I actually am available and I’ll come over to your place (or more likely tell you that you have to bring your baby over to my place) and impart words of wisdom and encouragement to your bundle of joy. I cannot promise that the lessons I teach will be based on the lessons I learned while watching Baby Einstein, but I can certainly guarantee that the considerable amount of money that I force you to pay me will more than cover the amount of money I shelled out for the Baby Einstein DVDs.

Not convinced yet? Well, here’s an exclusive preview of one of the new Baby Cabral Lessons.

Hey there little [guy/girl]! How are you?! You doing all right? Do you have any teeth yet? Have you moved on to eating solid foods? Okay, let’s get to the business at hand. Your parents brought you to me because they’re afraid that you’re falling behind. Most [insert age in months or years] are probably eating dryer lint right now, and maybe you’ve been known to partake of it as well, but your parents want you to be a little bit more than what the average [insert age in months or years] is. So how do you get there? You get there by listening to and paying attention to me. I’ll provide lessons of wisdom, such as: get smarter, do the math better, and don’t eat dryer lint. And you’ll also get to watch me watch TV, watch me play video games, and maybe even watch me pummel purple dinosaurs. I’ll have you on your way to becoming a Baby Genius in no time!

Disclaimer: Baby Cabral Lessons is a registered trademark of Baby Cabral Industries and we make no claims that by engaging in the Baby Cabral indoctrination that your baby will ever become a genius. Your baby just may not be that smart, or your baby may have already consumed far too much lint. Baby Cabral Lessons will likely result in the lowering of your baby’s self-esteem, aversion by your baby to everything education-related, and a desire by your baby to murder all purple dinosaur-like creatures. All Baby Cabral Lessons are available on DVD at a 3% discount.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

The Subterfuge - Part XV

JEDI DEMOTION

Galactic City, Coruscant - In what is believed to be the first ever occurrence of such an action, the Jedi Council has decided to posthumously demote a Jedi member. The Jedi Council ruled yesterday that Jedi Master Qui-Gon Jinn will be demoted to the rank of Jedi Knight based on circumstances surrounding the Trade Federation’s invasion of the planet Naboo. A thorough examination of the Jedi Archives reveals no such precedent for this action.

A year ago, in an alleged attempt to settle disputes related to the taxation of trade routes, Viceroy Nute Gunray authorized the Trade Federation’s droid army to attack the planet Naboo – an attack that was ultimately thwarted by a combined Naboo and Gungan force. The former Jedi Master Qui-Gon Jinn was one of two Jedi that aided in the defense of Naboo.

Following week-long closed-door meetings, sources familiar with the Council’s deliberations, commenting on the condition of anonymity, have stated that it was deemed that Jedi Jinn displayed perception skills “significantly lacking in one considered a Master of the Order.”

The sources went on to say that Jedi Jinn’s failure to recognize the difference between the queen of Naboo and her decoy was “inexcusable and something that even a Gungan would recognize.” It should be noted that no sources who were involved in the events of the battle on Naboo can identify any Gungan that did in fact recognize the deception. It should also be noted that no evidence has ever been found to suggest that Gungans are very smart and sources secretly indicate that it would be a horrible mistake to ever elect a Gungan as a Galactic representative or a Galactic senator.

Jedi Masters Yoda and Mace Windu were both reached for on the record comments for this story. Said Master Yoda, “Unable to see through the deception, Master Qui-Gon Jinn was. Disappointed in his lack of vision, the Council is. A failure Master Qui-Gon Jinn was. A failure his master, Count Dooku, is.” When questioned about whether he too is a failure, having been Master Dooku’s master, Master Yoda indicated that he had trained Jedi for nearly 900 years and that he should know which Jedi were failures and which were not and indicated that he was not a failure. It should be noted that his words were not put in this order.

Master Windu was less diplomatic in his misgivings about Jedi Jinn’s perceived shortcoming. “The reason that Master Qui-Gon Jinn was unable to detect the deception and the reason he was demoted is because he wasn’t a bad enough muthaf-… I’m sorry, I momentarily let my anger get the better of me, and anger is part of the path to the Dark Side.” When asked whether he saw through the deception or if given the chance would have, Master Windu replied angrily, if not hatefully, “Of course I would have! One of them is four inches taller than the other one! That’s why Master Jinn wasn’t on the Council; he wasn’t a bad enough muthaf-…” Master Windu ended the interview at this point.

Attempts to contact Jedi Knight Qui-Gon Jinn for this story were unsuccessful as Jedi Jinn is dead and no one on staff is able to communicate with the Jedi Astral Plane.

NABOO, JEDI CLEARED

Naboo System, Mid Rim - After a lengthy investigation, Coruscanti officials have released the findings from last year’s battle over Naboo. It was alleged by the Trade Federation that the Naboo force led by Queen Amidala had been highly negligent and reckless in allowing a young boy, not identified in this story because of his minor status, to leave the planet’s surface and venture into harm’s way. After an extensive interview with Jedi Knight Obi-Wan Kenobi, the only surviving Jedi from that battle, the investigators were assured that the boy was never in harm’s way, that the boy was never aboard the ship, and that the boy had remained in the garage hangar the entire time. The investigators were also told that they could move along. No charges will be brought against Queen Amidala, the Naboo, or the Jedi.

NEW STUDY: JEDI MIND TRICK NOT AS EFFECTIVE AS ONCE THOUGHT

In related news, new studies suggest that Jedi mind tricks are not as effective as commonly believed by the Jedi Order. In studies conducted on 807 anonymous adults of various species, it was found that 83% of the total adults interviewed and 80% of all species tested reported being immune to Jedi mind tricks. A clear majority of those interviewed reported pretending to be tricked so as to avoid death by lightsaber. It should be noted, however, that conclusive evidence suggests that Gungans are always fooled by Jedi mind tricks as none interviewed ever seemed to be able to identify an instance in which such a trick was attempted on him/her. The full results of the study will be released next week.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

The Subterfuge - Part XIV

People who know me very well know in what high regard I hold the television program NewsRadio. The NBC program that ran from the mid to late 90s was truly a brilliant comedy, NBC’s best of the 90s as far as I’m concerned.

One of my favorite episodes from the series is one from the fourth season named “Security Door.” As you might imagine (or perhaps you might not imagine this and I’m giving you a little too much credit), the episode focused on the problems that arise among the employees when a new security door is installed in radio station WNYX. Now I’m not going to provide a synopsis of the episode, but I would direct you instead to treat yourself and watch it at your leisure…or while at work, whatever works best for you.

What brings this episode to mind is the fact that I sit very close to such a security door, within eyeshot of it in fact, and I do enjoy the hilarity of observing the frustration of others when dealing with it. Ordinarily the door works just fine. A person uses his/her badge on the card reader, a beep sounds, which is followed by the sound of the magnetic door lock being released shortly after, then allowing for that person to pull the door open. When a person desires to leave the secured area, a motion sensor detects the movement of the person as he/she approaches and releases the lock allowing for exit.

Occasionally though, things don’t go this smoothly. In some instances, and it appears to be happening with ever greater frequency, the timing is a bit off, whereby the lock releases, but then reengages almost immediately (if such an idea has any meaning), preventing the person from entering/leaving. And this is when the fun begins.If someone is trying to enter the door, after the first failed attempted pull, there is a little confusion. After the second failed attempted pull, the frustration starts to build. The door pulls begin to get a little harder, more violent. And after about the fourth or fifth attempt, pure anger sets in as, though muted to some degree by the door, I can hear the yelling and screaming. Oh so fun to watch.

But significantly more fun comes when a person attempts to leave and is thwarted. Admittedly I am no mind reader (though this would be a very useful talent to have), but based on reading the emotions of people as they struggle to get beyond the door, I think I can fairly accurately quote the monologue taking place in each person’s head.

The door fails for the first time. First there is bewilderment. The person presses the red “exit” button, but is still unable to leave. True fear sets in now. “No, no, no… I have to get out of here! They’re never going to let me leave! I feel like crying… Wait, I can’t cry right now and let everyone see me. I have to try again…” The person attempts to leave again by waving their hand or something they are carrying in front of the motion sensor. The door again disengages, but the person is too slow to exit before it once again reengages. Then comes the anger. “You son of a b----! You let me out this instant! I will not let you keep me here!” Honestly, I think much of this is actually audible. What are also audible are the noises caused by the violent pushing and banging on the door that occurs at this stage.

And then after this comes the hate. There is the hate experienced by the person who fears and is angry that he/she will never be able to leave. This person hates the door and is willing to demonstrate this hate. And in demonstrating this hatred for the door, the person is willing to dish out some suffering to the door. This fearful, angry, hateful person grabs hammers, books, shoes, calendars demonstrating the truly dubious artistic talents of the children of the employee’s coworkers, anything to exact revenge on the door. I know that you don’t believe that doors have feelings, but trust me, I can feel the door’s pain as it is repeatedly tortured…

Let’s see, we have fear, anger, hate, suffering… I think we all know where this is leading…

Journal Entry: It’s leading to the Dark Side of course! And if you know me very well, you understand now my pure delight in watching people struggle with the door. I enjoy watching others descend inexorably toward the Dark Side. I enjoy leading people inexorably toward the Dark Side. The reason? The Sith have always been much cooler than the Jedi. Now I’m not saying that this door is evil or an instrument of the Dark Side. And I’m also not saying that it isn’t evil nor an instrument of the Dark Side. What I am saying is: People, please be smarter than the door. Actually, don’t be smarter than the door because that would ruin my enjoyment.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

The Subterfuge - Part XIII

It would be tempting to describe an event that took place on this date nineteen years ago as a simple miscarriage of justice. But a closer inspection of the facts surrounding the event will show it to be at once both far less and so much more. (Try wrapping your heads around that sentence.) While I abhor raising the happenings in the world of sports to too high a level of importance as well as the hero-worshipping of big time athletes, there are rare occasions when important life lessons can be gleaned from the world of sports. For example, it is sometimes good not to wear thousands of dollars in jewelry into the club so that you don’t have to carry your unlicensed concealed weapon inside the waist of your pants, and you don’t accidently shoot yourself in the leg and end up getting sentenced to two years in prison. I know it might be tough to figure out when one of these cases might be because a person has to wear his, or her, bling, but I’m sure such a case does exist. Keep searching…

But there I’ve gone and lost my train of thought for a moment. My apologies. Some of you may possess exceptional memories and then again, some of you out of curiosity may have already searched to find out what happened on this date nineteen years ago, but for those of you to whom neither applies, I will tell you that today is the nineteenth anniversary of a college football game between the Missouri Tigers and the Colorado Buffalos known as the Fifth Down Game.

The Fifth Down Game is termed thusly because near the end of the game, in fact on the very last timed play of the game, Colorado was inexplicably awarded a fifth down on which they scored a touchdown, which may or may not have been a real touchdown since it was questionable whether the Colorado player even got into the end zone (it apparently took the officials nearly twenty minutes to decide whether the Colorado player had broken the plane of the goal line with the ball), and in the course was awarded a victory, 33-31, that the team clearly did not deserve.

Now this sort of win by cheating would not be such a big deal if this was the type of Colorado Buffaloes team that we all have come to know and love, the kind of team that needs to cheat in order to have any chance at all to win. No, believe it or not, Colorado was actually once a respectable football team. With the “win” in the Fifth Down Game, Colorado would improve its record to 3-1-1 (but really only 2-2-1) and would go on to finish 11-1-1 (really only 10-2-1, and if you ask some Notre Dame fans, it really should have only been 9-3-1) and somehow gained a share of the mythical national championship even though Georgia Tech finished a legitimate 11-0-1. Let’s recap; Georgia Tech finished undefeated at 11-0-1 and Colorado finished 11-1-1 but it was clear that they should have finished no better than 10-2-1. And yet somehow Colorado gained a share of the national championship. Such a sham.

But something has happened since then. Many of you will have noticed that since that time, with a very few exceptions, Colorado has been a terrible football team. Colorado lacked integrity back then, and that lack of integrity has cursed them from that point forward. If Colorado wanted to know how a team with integrity should behave, they only needed to have looked fifty years before their fateful game with Missouri.

In 1940, an epic game took place between the Big Green of Dartmouth and the Big Red of Cornell in Hanover, New Hampshire. Cornell was a powerhouse team, coming in ranked second in the Associated Press poll and sporting an eighteen game winning streak. Well, Cornell trailed late in the game 3-0, but given a fifth down, they were able to score a touchdown and with the extra point appeared to win the game 7-3. However, the Cornell Big Red, being a team of integrity and not being cheaters, reviewed what had taken place in the game and decided that since they were unfairly given a fifth down, they would forfeit the game to Dartmouth. That is precisely what a team with integrity would do.

Integrity is something that should be valued above all else. Separated by a span of fifty years, we have two examples of opportunities in which two college football teams had the chance to denounce cheating and behave as programs of integrity. Cornell chose to behave as such a team of integrity; Colorado chose to behave like cheaters.Here we now are about a third of the way through this year’s college football season and it is clear that each of these teams has been justly rewarded for the legacies of their actions surrounding their Fifth Down Games. Cornell sits at 2-1 with a very good chance of finishing in the top five of the hallowed Ivy League, but they do face a tough matchup this coming Saturday against the powerful two-time-defending-Ivy-League-champion Harvard Crimson. Colorado sits at 1-3 with a very good chance of finishing outside the top five…of the Big 12…North Division…out of six teams. Integrity matters.

Journal Entry: I’d like to thank the very good people at the Wikipedia for doing the research for me about the Fifth Down Games. Other than that, I forgot what I was originally going to say here, so I’ll just blast Colorado a bit more. I know just about everyone reading this will agree with me that giving Colorado even a share of the national title after by all rights finishing 10-2-1 while another team finished 11-0-1 is a bit of a joke. This is irrespective of Colorado having “played a more difficult schedule.” They lost a game and almost certainly should have lost two. Georgia Tech had zero losses. Zero. How pollsters can overlook the Colorado loss and highly suspicious “win” against Missouri is mystifying. Ordinarily I believe that the Coaches’ poll is a complete charade in college football, but on this occasion, I would have to side with the coaches and not the AP in the national championship poll results.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

The Subterfuge - Part XII

And just when I was lamenting the fact that I would have to leave the world of pop-culture commentary behind, just when I thought that I had run out of things to say about the entertainingly entertaining entertainment business and come up with something completely mundane to discuss, the other day I happened to be watching Headline News, or HLN, as it is now known. And what did I happen to see on HLN? Well I saw a story that stated that the one and only Kevin Federline was scheduled to appear on the next edition of Celebrity Fit Club!!! And I immediately said to myself, “Yes! Cabral, your bread-and-butter is back!”

For about a year now, I had been wondering what had ever become of Kevin Federline. Perhaps the greatest rapper and recording artist of any genre for that matter, Federline disappeared into the unknown sometime last year, depriving us of some much needed quality music. We were left to wonder what exactly he could be doing while we assumed that he could only be making the heroic sacrifice of being the type of father that everyone needs by taking care of his kids while his ex-wife, Britney Spears, worked to leave crazy town…er, worked to conquer the demons in her life. And since Britney Spears has officially lost her official nut-job certification, it is now time for Federline to burst back on the scene.

But it seems that K-Fed has put on a few of the L-B’s over the past several months. And that makes sense; taking care of two young children on your own doesn’t leave much time to get your workout in. It’s hard to find time to go out for a run when you’re single and the primary caregiver for two children under the age of five. It’s hard to find time to work on your backup dancer moves when you have to worry about making money to feed your young children.

Now, CFC is not just famous for giving washed up celebrities a chance get their lives back in order at least on one level, managing their runaway weight problems; it is also famous for the fights between cast members and the complete meltdowns of cast members during the course of the show. And this edition of CFC comes pre-packaged with a powder keg that is ready to blow.

Of course, Federline and Jackson have said before that there is no animosity between the two, one can only imagine that Shar Jackson has to still feel a bit of resentment for Federline considering the fact that he left her for Spears while she (Jackson) was pregnant with his second child and, as nearly as I can tell, Federline never really fought that hard for custody of the two children he had with Jackson. But then again, Federline probably wasn’t going to be able to collect $20,000 in monthly child support from Jackson.

Oh well, maybe Federline and Jackson have buried whatever hatchet must surely have existed between the two, but that doesn’t mean that we still can’t have a big blowup like there was between Dustin “Screech” Diamond and Drill Instructor Harvey Walden IV during the most recent season. I can just see it now, at one of the weigh-ins Federline hands Walden a stack of audio cassettes of his Playing with Fire album and suggests that the cast members pop them into their walkmans to jam to while doing their workouts, and Walden challenges Federline to a cage match. Ah, it will be good times!

Journal Entry: And in related news, Lamar Odom, sidekick #2 on the Los Angeles Lakers got married over the weekend to Khloe Kardashian after a several days-long courtship and after having had three kids with his ex-girlfriend of nearly a decade and after never having been married before. So let’s congratulate Mr. Odom on leaving bachelorhood! Sure, I don’t really know what he sees or saw in Ms. Kardashian, but then again, I never watched Keeping Up with the Kardashians or Kourtney and Khloe take Miami…

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

The Subterfuge - Part XI

So the other day I was driving along with the radio on, listening to some tunes. Well, as I was listening, the song “Single Ladies (Put a Ring on It)” came on by an artist known as Beyonce Knowles. (Maybe some of you have heard of the song or the artist before. No? She’s reasonably talented, I guess. I think that she might make it big with a little luck, so you might want to get familiar with her.) Now ordinarily I would have just turned the station, or turned off the radio, or crashed the car in protest because most of you are well aware that I’m a much bigger fan of someone like, say…Taylor Swift and that kind of music.

However, for whatever reason, I paused and chose to listen to the lyrics of the song. And quite naturally, the reflexive distain that this song had earned from me, perhaps unfairly, became completely justified in my mind. So as I was listening, I heard this particular stanza:

“I got gloss on my lips, a man on my hips
Got me tighter in my Dereon jeans
Acting up, drink in my cup
I can care less what you think”

Did you read that? It’s simply awful. Do you see that last line in the stanza – I can care less what you think? I can care less what you think… Do you want to know what I can or could care less about? Okay, in fairness, I may not be the best person to consider when wondering the identities of things about which one can (or could) care less. For I think that many of you are well aware that there are not many things about which I could (or can) care less. And thus when people tell me things such as Man City won such and such game, or my flip flop is missing, or you’re using “air quotes” inappropriately, or I’m over at Taco Cabana with a double order of huevos rancheros waiting for you, my treat, well then my response is I could not care less. Wait a minute, something’s not right. Scratch that last example; I’m afraid I got a little bit carried away. A treated double order of huevos rancheros from Taco Cabana? Now that is something about which I certainly can care less.

I discuss this point because I think that it is quite evident that this last line makes absolutely no sense. I’ve hesitated to read all of the lyrics in the song, but based on the ones that I have read, and based on the fact that when this song does come on in bars/clubs none of the guys seem to be particularly excited, but only the girls, I can only assume that Miss Knowles is talking directly to an ex-boyfriend whose opinion she does not hold in high regard. So shouldn’t the line be I can’t care less what you think? (The line could have similarly been I cannot care less what you think, but in order to keep whatever silly beat was used in the song, I used can’t. Please note that the line still doesn’t rhyme with the line occurring two lines before it.)

Now Beyonce is not the only who makes this mistake. Indeed, I would estimate that I hear “could care less” at least ninety percent of the time (with the accurate phrases “could not care less” and “couldn’t care less” comprising the balance). So in essence, people are wrong at least ninety percent of the time, or in every instance that they say I could/can care less. Of course there are things that people could/can care less about than they do, but when people say these things, they almost invariably want to convey the impression that they mean the exact opposite (and I am waiting to actually hear an instance when a person does actually mean that they could/can care less about something).

Journal Entry: I cannot believe that I actually now know words from that stupid “Single Ladies (Put a Ring on It)” song beyond those words in its stupid chorus/refrain. There is clearly a chain reaction of events that led to me knowing these words with several linkages. The most obvious is Mr. Kanye West’s “decision” to interrupt Taylor Swift’s acceptance speech at the VMAs. Now sure, if you eliminate this particular event I would not have been forced to learn these lines – I could still be living in ignorant bliss – but since Kanye West is insane, he is incapable of really making any decisions so I am once again left blaming all of you who watch nonsense like the VMAs. Thanks a lot everyone…

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

The Subterfuge - Part X

I really don’t want to have to discuss this, but it is somewhat unavoidable. For those of you who watched the MTV Video Music Awards this past Sunday on the MTV, first of all, you probably could have found something better to do with your time. It probably should come as no surprise to anyone that I missed this particular edition of the “VMAs,” just as I have missed every other edition. In fact, I was completely unaware that the program was even on…

That is, I was completely unaware until my Facebook news feed started to “blow up,” as the kids say, with comments about Kanye West. I gave it little thought then because it seemed that it could not have really been that important (and in the end, it wasn’t), and I really blamed all of those people posting on the news feed for whatever happened to happen in the first place. (You see, if no one watched the VMAs, there would be no VMAs to watch, and Kanye West wouldn’t even have a platform to engage in ridiculous actions. So there you have it; all of you are to blame for this and not Kanye West.)

But then the following morning my incuriousness got the better of me as I continued to see the “Kanye West” news feeds and so I still didn’t check out what the hubbub was all about. So it wasn’t until I got to work that I finally decided to see what this whole Kanye West/VMA issue was all about. And so I watched.

It seems that Taylor Swift was given an award for some category the identity of which escapes me at the moment, and so while she was up giving her acceptance speech, a special guest in the person of Kanye West decided to join her on the stage. And Kanye West had nothing but the best things to say to Taylor as he congratulated her on her first ever VMA win. Or at least that is what he would have done if he was only partially insane. However, as it has no doubt become clear over the years, Kanye West is completely insane. And so instead of doing only the partially absurd by walking onstage and interrupting to congratulate her, Kanye said, and I paraphrase, “Taylor, I’m really happy for you, and I’m going to let you finish, but Beyonce had one of the best videos in history.”

The problem is that Kanye West apparently lacks that portion of the human brain that tells a person that, hey, maybe I should just keep this particular thought between me and me at the moment. You know, if Kanye West had a blog or something like that, then maybe he could type out a few of his thoughts and feelings there.

But now on to what you really want to know: was Kanye West right? Does Beyonce have one of the best videos in history, and by extension of that thought, was Beyonce’s video better than Taylor Swift’s? I don’t care. I have no idea what videos were in contention. However, since I hate country music, I cannot say that it is likely that I would like Taylor Swift’s video. But then again, I’ve hated most of Beyonce’s videos that I’ve seen and songs that I’ve heard. But all of this is pointless. All of these awards shows are de facto popularity contests. So the simple solution for you, Mr. West, is to either pay off all of those serving as judges, or, if the VMAs are judged in a similar fashion to the ridiculous People’s Choice Awards (i.e., you for some unfathomable reason let the fans vote for who they think should win), and it is literally impossible to pay off everyone, then you point out, quite accurately, that Taylor Swift may or may not daily eat at least six children under the age of four and that she may or may not run a vicious cockfighting ring with Wilford Brimley.

Journal Entry: And in case you were wondering, no, I did not watch Kanye West’s appearance on this new Jay Leno program. The reason is that Jay Leno is not funny. For the life of me, I have no idea how the Tonight Show stayed at #1 with him there for so many years. I have heard, however, that apparently West said that he was going to take some time to do some reflection. Well, that’s super, but I thought that he was going to be doing some reflection after the South Park Fishsticks episode. Regardless of what you think about West as a performer, he is a crazy person, so it should come as no surprise when he does something that is completely insane. He is a ticking time-bomb of the crazy.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

The Subterfuge - Part IX

A long, long time ago there was a beautiful Flip Flop Princess residing in a glorious land of superbness with her equally beautiful twin Flip Flop Princess sister, whom we’ll call Sandal Princess for the sake of clarity. Now, although Flip Flop Princess seemed to have everything that a Flip Flop Princess could want, she was constantly jealous that her mother loved Sandal Princess far more. And also Mother had a horrid hamster-dog hybrid that unbeknownst to Mother constantly attacked and otherwise tried to defile Flip Flop Princess in unspeakable manners.

Well, one day Flip Flop Princess had had enough. She saw the opportunity to escape the neglectful eye of Mother and go off on a glorious new adventure filled with flowers and treats and candy and most of all, no vile hamster-dog hybrids. And so Flip Flop Princess surreptitiously stole away into a land of grand new possibilities.

Mother amazingly noticed Flip Flop Princess’s absence almost immediately. It was too bad that the discovery wasn’t immediate, for then maybe Mother would have been able to stop Flip Flop Princess from running off. And then even worse than failing to prevent Flip Flop Princess’s escape, she accused the land’s greatest Hero, Hero, of having abducted Flip Flop Princess. The horror of having been accused by Mother of having kidnapped the land’s beloved Flip Flop Princess drove Hero into a deep depression.

But there was really no depression, feigned or real. Hero after all never really cared for the insignificant Flip Flop Princess. And instead of using his great strength and courage to seek out and save Flip Flop Princess, Hero did nothing because he didn’t care and he realized that it wasn’t as if Flip Flop Princess was irreplaceable.

Eventually, however, Hero had a change of heart and used his great strength and courage to help Mother to discover to where Flip Flop Princess had run off. But this is only partly true as Hero had no change of heart. Many doubted whether Hero possessed a heart at all. Nevertheless Hero endeavored to bring Flip Flop Princess back from the far off land. But what end did Hero’s aid truly serve? Had Hero unbeknownst to Mother made a secret pact with Villainy?

Journal Entry: Did you see that? Did you see how I used the word unbeknownst twice in one email? That’s a personal best by two unbeknownsts I believe. I also created the word superbness, so please do congratulate me. And did you see that? That’s a second usage of the word superbness, a word, I’d like to reiterate, that I created myself. That’s a new personal best and a new world record by my count of three superbnesses, since after all I did create the word. And did you get that? I’m now up to three unbeknownsts, two unbeknownstses (including the one in this sentence), three superbnesses, and two superbnesseses (including the one in this sentence). Ooooh damn! Did I just make up two more words…

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

The Subterfuge - Part VIII

It was a late Thursday night (indeed, it was certainly early Friday morning by this point) not unlike any early Friday morning for me, and I had just pulled into the drive-thru of the one and only Taco Cabana (okay, of course there is more than one Taco Cabana out there, thankfully, because I would hate to see the line at the drive-thru at the Taco Cabana if it was the only one. It would be madness. There would probably be riots. Nightly. Or probably morningly.) to pick up the Usual, a double order of huevos rancheros.

Now, I was getting a little bit annoyed because I had made an extra effort to get out of bed to get over to Taco Cabana by long before 2 am. I figured that if I got there by 1:45 am, I would sail through the drive-thru with no problem. Silly me, I was forgetting that this was the Taco Cabana.

As my wait in line before even ordering began to approach fifteen minutes, I began considering doing the drastic: getting out of my car and walking up to those ahead of me in line and tossing them out of their cars and then driving their cars off somewhere else, anywhere else, but not in that line. Fortunately for those in the cars in front of me, this did not have to be done.

But when I got to the intercom to order, and after I had already ordered the Usual (the double order of huevos rancheros), for some reason I actually looked at the menu and I beheld listed there the Big Cabana Bowl! I was intrigued, very intrigued. I was intrigued enough to order the Big Cabana Bowl.

Upon arriving home, rather than digging into one of the orders of huevos rancheros as is customary, I went after the Big Cabana Bowl. And do you know how it was? It was delicious. I wish that I could say that I finished it there in that one sitting, but this was the Big Cabana Bowl after all and sadly I must admit that I was defeated on that occasion. So I put the remains of the Big Cabana Bowl in the refrigerator knowing that I would perhaps dream of finishing that Big Cabana Bowl a few short hours later that morning.

A few short hours later, I did wake up and I did finish that Big Cabana Bowl. And this is precisely where this story meets its end. I had made the new discovery of the Big Cabana Bowl at Taco Cabana and at that point, endless possibilities instantly opened in my world…

Journal Entry: And you thought the Big Cabana Bowl story was over. How silly of you. Because the very observant of you will have noted that there was still the matter of the double order of ranchos huervos that had gone uneaten. Well, I promptly took care of one of those Friday evening. And then, I truly wrapped everything up by finishing off the second one Saturday morning. But the “Usual” has taken on an entirely different meaning…

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

The Subterfuge - Part VII

…and you would never guess what the new dynamic duo is up to now…

One of the things that I have come to realize that I missed most about not having written the happy hour emails the past couple of years is that I missed out on some truly great pop culture/celebrity-type greatness, like the emergence of the whole Speidi phenomenon! Yes, friends, the Spencer Pratt/Heidi Montag power couple known as Speidi (yet another of those absolutely fantastic and original celebrity couple name portmanteaux that we all love) was something that completely escaped my notice until just a few short months ago.

First I learned that Heidi and Spencer had gotten married, and I thought to myself, wow; that’s fantastic! And I obviously wished the couple a long and happy marriage… But then I said to myself, wait, who the hell are Heidi Montag and Spencer Pratt? That’s right! Believe it or not, I had absolutely no knowledge about either of them. And so I had to do my research the only way I know how, and I went to the Wikipedia and to my horror I discovered that the years I had gone without watching the MTV had caused me to miss out on some quality television like Laguna Beach and The OC and The Hills. I cannot be totally sure, but upon skimming one of the Speidi power-couple’s pages I discovered that the two are the main stars of one or more of those programs, which may or may not be reality shows. (And based on the trend that I have heard about in TV these days, I’m going to guess that all of those aforementioned programs are reality shows, as real as reality ever gets.)

But the next thing that I heard about them was that they were appearing in the latest edition of I’m a Celebrity…Get Me out of Here!(!)!! This was the second season of this particular show with the first having taken place in 2003. But why did it take six years between the first and second seasons of this show? Well, it certainly was not because the show was crap. No! It was obviously because all of the celebrities in Hollywood have just been so busy over the years that there were just none available for another season until now.

And did they ever gather a superb cast this time! Obviously Speidi headlined the group of celebrities, but they were also able to get not one, but two Baldwins to appear! To make a long story short, somebody won and a lot of other people lost. I’m not really sure how it turned out, but if you were allowed to bet on who would win such competitions after the fact, I would certainly have to bet on Speidi. I’ve convinced myself that Speidi won the competition…or maybe Alec Baldwin.

But silly me, I’ve almost forgotten why I started to write this in the first place (I mean other than because of my newfound love and admiration for Speidi). Well, it seems that Speidi, er…Heidi is lined up to sing at the Miss Universe Pageant this year. And by this year, I mean right now – as I type this. Obviously I would be watching the pageant if I had any way of finding out on what channel it is airing. Too bad. Well, the best part about this dynamic duo is that you get two for the price of one! And in this case, part of the price pays for Heidi to sing and the other part earns you the right to watch Spencer sunbathe! How can things possibly get better than this? (I hesitate to imagine.)

I’m Cabral Williams, and I want to officially announce the arrival of Speidi.

Journal Entry: I’m sorry but the Dynamic Duo – Speidi – have certainly replaced the Wonder Twins – Britney Spears and Kevin Federline – on my radar. The reason is that the Wonder Twins just haven’t really come up with any sort of great exploits lately. I mean if you want to get back to the top, Wonder Twins, you have to come back with something much more impressive than I’m a Celebrity…Get Me out of Here! and singing at Miss Universe/sunbathing on the stage at Miss Universe. Those heroics are tough to beat, I know, but you certainly can do it!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

The Subterfuge - Part VI

There’s been a not insignificant amount of criticism of the subject matter of the happy hour emails. (Okay, maybe “not insignificant” is not the proper way of describing the criticism as the notion of “significance” is open to interpretation, but let’s just move on…) Apparently, it seems, there were at least a few people who were less than thrilled that my emails did not take the sort of Us Weekly/Seventeen magazine tone, and so I’ve decided to put my epic autobiographical story on hold for the time being.

So what will I be discussing on this occasion? Why, I just happened to be watching the VH1 channel Sunday night and happened to catch sizeable portions of the shows My Antonio and Real Chance of Love 2. Just to explain the programs briefly, both of them are The Bachelor-type shows: several women compete for the affections of the guy as he eliminates them from the competition as the season progresses.

Let’s face it; there is much that is stupid about these VH1 shows, just as I’m sure there is much that is stupid about The Bachelor. (And it should come as no surprise that I’ve never watched any of this crappy show.) But the thing about the VH1 shows is that they are part of the network’s so-called Celebreality lineup. Celebreality is of course a portmanteau (and I do love that word portmanteau) of the words celebrity and reality. And I guess My Antonio can be considered a reality show featuring a celebrity, that is, if you consider Antonio Sabato, Jr. a celebrity. I mean, I definitely consider former-Calvin-Klein-underwear-model-former-soap-opera-actors real celebrities, or celebreal. (Do you like that? I just made it up. I think…) It’s not that much different from indicted former House Majority Leaders appearing on Dancing with the Stars, I guess…

But the Real Chance of Love is even more celebreal. You have two brothers nicknamed Real and Chance coincidentally who are obviously well known for being members of the rap group The Stallionaires. Now they are the bachelor stars of Real Chance of Love, which was spawned by the VH1 Celebreality show I Love New York, which was spawned by the VH1 Celebreality show Flavor of Love, which was spawned by the VH1 Celebreality show Strange Love, which was spawned by the VH1 Celebreality show The Surreal Life. You of course know The Surreal Life as the show that brought together many celebrities to live in a house together in a fashion similar to what took place in MTV’s The Real World. And the list of big time stars who appeared on The Surreal Life includes…and…and…and…and… What a phenomenal group!

Alright I’m done with this. All of these shows are stupid, and not just the VH1 shows. The Bachelor is stupid, Dancing with the Stars is stupid, and all of the others are stupid as well. They’re all dumb. The derivative nature of these programs shows laziness and lack of originality. I think I’m going back to my story next week…

Journal Entry: And now my commentary about the Paula Abdul American Idol situation. There is of course a long version and a short version and several in-between versions. You’re lucky enough to get both the short version (I don’t care and neither should you) and one of the in-between versions. I don’t care because this show is crap. Is everyone on the show wonderfully overpaid? Yes. Should the viewers of the show boycott the program if they feel that Abdul is not paid a ridiculously high enough salary to put her on par with the ridiculously high salaries others on the show are making? Well, since I don’t watch the show, I don’t care. It’s up to them, though, if they want to waste that time. Goodness knows they’ve already ewasted enough time watching this stupid show in the first place. And so there you have it.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

The Subterfuge - Part V

…and taking one final glance back before turning into the entrance of my secret headquarters, I was at last satisfied that I was no longer being pursued. It was a good thing, too, because even I was getting a little annoyed with having to singlehandedly fight two bears. It wasn’t difficult, mind you, just annoying.

As I pulled into the driveway, Humpty Dumpty was there waiting for me. I could see a rather large crack on the side of his head from which some fluid had started to leak. I knew the answer before I even asked, but went ahead anyway.

“Mr. Dumpty, um…um, did you fall down again?”

“Yesh,” he replied after a few moments’ pause.

“Well, you’re going to have to wait until after I unload these two before I repair you.”

“I helph,” he said as he started to walk to join me at the side of the truck and rather predictably, fell and hit his head again, making the crack far worse. Of course, I thought, but stayed focused on my two guests.

So I opened up the flatbed portion of the truck and picked up the golden haired girl. There were quite a few twigs and leaves that had fallen on her and were littered throughout her hair and clothing, caused by the drive through the woods. I knew that she was a tough girl and could handle it and so I carried her inside and placed her on the bed inside one of my guest rooms.

Walking back out to the truck, I took a glance over at Humpty Dumpty before going to unload my other guest. I could see that not only had Humpty Dumpty’s “yolk” started to pool on the ground, I could see as evidenced by a “yolk” stain on the side of the truck that Mr. Dumpty had made at least one futile effort to rise to his feet. Crap, I thought, I was going to have to wash the truck now, too. I knew that I had to find a permanent solution to this Humpty Dumpty problem.

I opened up the back door to the truck and unfastened the seatbelt that secured the little bear. As I did this, the bear started to stir from its slumber. “Are you okay there, little guy?” I asked not knowing for sure whether it was a boy or girl bear. “Sorry for hitting all of those bumps as I was driving over here,” I added as I carried him/her inside and placed him/her on a bed inside another guest room.

I then walked back out and stared at the wriggling Humpty Dumpty. How do I deal with this problem? Then an idea suddenly came to my mind and I went and grabbed my tools and went to work. After a few minutes, I had constructed a walker for Humpty Dumpty, not unlike the ones you find babies walking about in. The wheels were the hardest part to get perfect.

And so I carefully rolled Humpty Dumpty away from the truck and gently went to work cleaning the mess he had made. After finishing, I took a step back and admired the newly cleaned fa├žade of the truck. And then I looked down at the ground and said to myself, “Oh right, Humpty Dumpty,” as I realized that I was now standing in his “yolk” that was seeping onto the ground.

Now I was going to have to clean my boots too…

Journal Entry: Truth be told, Humpty Dumpty is starting to annoy me quite a bit. He is just way too clumsy and I’m tired of having to deal with cleaning up egg yolk and patching up eggshells. He might have to have a little accident in which he’s accidentally left near a frying pan in a room with a hungry bear or a hungry golden haired girl.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

The Subterfuge - Part IV

…and following the directions given to me, I came upon what was believed to be the cave home of the elusive and legendary Sasquatch. I entered thinking that I needed only to await the arrival of my prey…

But as I explored the cave looking for a proper hiding spot, it became clear to me that more than one Sasquatch lived there. There were very crude settings that looked like that of a dining area, if you consider stones suitable chairs and rock slabs suitable plates. A bit more curious than I probably should have been, I walked through this “table” area and noted that while the large and medium sized slabs were still filled with this…food, the smallest slab had been wiped clean. Picking up the largest slab, which was still slightly warm, I certainly realized why this and the medium sized slab were still full. The smell was repulsive, and I could only assume the taste was the same. This nastiness certainly could not have been stomached by Sasquatches.

Putting the slab down, I could faintly see toward the back of the cave what must have been the bedroom area, where the “beds” were located. And by “beds” I mean thin layers of grass and other vegetation lying on the ground. Since this was indeed a cave, naturally the lighting was not the best, but I was able to see as I approached the beds that a small lump did lay upon one of them. My first thought was that Sasquatches are evidently as irresponsible of some humans, having left their child home alone. But as I shone my light closer on the lump, I noticed it to be a golden haired adolescent girl.

Before I was able to do anything else, I heard loud noises behind me and I reacted by diving through the air and somersaulting behind a rather large boulder that must have been a night stand. (Sorry, I was not yet an expert on Sasquatch furniture.) By the light of the cave mouth I could see the silhouettes of what appeared not to be three Sasquatches walking in, but instead those of three bears (!!!)!

There was some anger, and not a small bit of thrashing about the dining area, when the bears realized that the smallest bear’s Sasquatch, er…, bear food had been eaten. As the noise of the angry bears grew louder, and as they walked toward the back of the cave, the golden haired girl awoke and screamed in terror (okay, I assume it was terror). With only moments to act, I lifted my tranquilizer gun and fired.

One, two, three, four! And why did I fire four shots? Did I miss? Of course not, there was one shot for each of the bears and one shot for the golden haired girl. I went over and scooped up the passed out little girl and dragged the comatose baby bear out of the cave. Once I had them loaded in the truck I got on the phone. I told Humpty Dumpty that while I did not find Sasquatch, I did recruit a couple more to the cause. I could not make out for sure what Humpty Dumpty said in response as the connection was rather poor, and Humpty Dumpty still had not learned to speak without slurring…

Journal Entry: Okay, some of you have been made aware over the years of my general disdain for the stupid Geico commercials, particularly the ones dealing with the stupid “cavemen.” Leaving the “cavemen” aside for the moment, the commercials are stupid because of the phrase “fifteen minutes could save you 15% on your car insurance,” or whatever the exact phrase was. But do you know what? I’m guessing fifteen minutes could also save you 20%. Fifteen minutes could also save you 25% on your car insurance. Or, gasp, fifteen minutes could save you nothing. Stupid. Now getting back to the “cavemen,” they were and are not cavemen because they didn’t and don’t live in caves. But they could perhaps be Sasquatches.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

The Subterfuge - Part III

…and as I succeeded with incredible ease in reassembling the pieces, I realized that one of two things had to be true; (1) the king’s men who were assigned to the task were idiots or (2) the king was an idiot for putting his horses in charge of his men in putting Humpty Dumpty back together again. Or it was very likely that both were true…

I mean, as potential additional proof of my second hypothesis, the fact that this king had elevated an eggman to such a lofty position in his court (why else would he care whether Humpty Dumpty was put together again?) should have caused some to at least wonder whether (if not actually verbalize the concerns that) the king might be a fool. And then again in support of the first hypothesis, there were only seven pieces of Humpty Dumpty. There are honestly not that many ways in which you can arrange seven pieces of eggman shell. Heck, it took me about seven minutes to finish the task once I had started, and five of those minutes were consumed by me drinking a 40 oz. of Olde English 800. (I know, it wasn’t a record, but I had my attention divided as I was truly worried about Humpty Dumpty.)

Now granted, after I had finished with the reassembly, Humpty Dumpty did not quite look as eggman-like as I would have expected. He lacked smoothness and was a little wobbly. (And I feel that I should point out at this moment that neither of these things is attributable to the fact that I may or may not have had a buzz going after finishing the 40.)

But there was something else that suddenly occurred to me that most certainly contributed to Humpty Dumpty’s wobbliness. As I was working on the reassembly (when I wasn’t drinking), I tried to include as much of the insides of Mr. Dumpty as I could. (I was very pleased to see that the king had had his horses and men save this portion of Mr. Dumpty as well.) However, trying to handle eggman insides with your bare hands is particularly messy, and the only other tool that I had at my disposal was a giant fork. I’m not sure why it was there, and it definitely wasn’t the most effective item to use in trying to gather up the yolk-like insides of an eggman, but I certainly preferred using this as opposed to soiling my hands. The bottom line is that since I was a little rusty on eggman anatomy, I wasn’t sure what parts of Mr. Dumpty ended up being left out.

What seemed to be the case was that what was excluded contributed in some meaningful way to Mr. Dumpty’s coherent thought as once assembled he made absolutely no sense. It didn’t matter; I had the chief advisor for my force. (Who else would I have selected? He had clearly advised a king at one time – although it was most likely an idiotic king – despite his current shortcomings.)

Who would I look for next?

Journal Entry: For those waiting to hear how I saved baseball, sorry, I got bored with that storyline and so I’ve decided to postpone it perhaps indefinitely. And for the record, I’m not really sorry about doing so. I just said that to assuage your hurt feelings. But since I probably don’t really care about your feelings, I hereby withdraw the fake apology.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

The Subterfuge - Part II

…and after having perfected my creation, a super potent steroid, I took solace in secretly knowing that I would be the savior of baseball.

But being the incredibly modest person that I am, I wanted to remain in anonymity and so I passed off the steroid for manufacture and distribution to one who will remain nameless. At times, though, I permitted the Nameless One to ask me steroid related questions. It seemed only fair.

On one occasion, the Nameless One asked, “Oh great Steroid Master, how did you perfect this grand steroid?” It was a very good question. As I went through the process of developing the formula, I needed subjects on which to test the various formulas. So I tested it on numerous neighborhood animals – dogs, cats, opossums, birds, and finally, hamster-dogs, among others. I obtained valuable information from this, and it finally came time to test it on humans.

I was all set to inject myself with the steroid when it occurred to me that this was terribly unfair. And why was this unfair? I was already routinely pummeling my younger brother and sister whenever we fought, and this would only make the beatings I dished out more severe. And being the good big brother who cared dearly about the wellbeing of my younger siblings, I felt I needed to protect them from my savage beatings.

And so I gave the steroid to my brother and sister, and what happened? Well, it certainly toughened them up, as I knew that it would. (Because heck, if it toughened up something as wimpy as the hamster-dog, I knew that it would have to work on people.) Mind you, the outcome did not change on any of those occasions that it was necessary for me to provide a little tough love, but at least my brother and sister were no longer quite as maimed. It brings a tear to my eye when I think about how much stronger I made them… Wait a minute, where was I going with this?

Oh right! Crap! Saving baseball! I suppose that story might have to wait until next time…

Preview: Wait a second, I had this grand plan to launch the campaign to have Jose Canseco elected as the next president of the United States. Yes, that Jose Canseco. Through Canseco I would lead a puppet regime, with Canseco as my puppet leader. But now people are saying that evidently a person must be born in this country to be president? Then what good is Canseco to me now?

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

The Subterfuge - Part I

…and that was when I finally convinced all of the world’s supposed academics of their unconscionable lunacy in continuing to hold to their misguided belief that Pluto was a planet.

Unfortunately, the unenviable task of telling all of the assembled Plutonian visitors that since they did not come from an actual planet, they did not actually exist also fell on my shoulders. It was heartbreaking – not for me, but rather I suppose it would have been heartbreaking for all of those Plutonians if they had hearts that existed.

But even more daunting and unnerving than having to worry about telling the Plutonians that they did not exist was dealing with the Plutonians’ Plutonian pets. You see, even though the Plutonians did not exist, they did at least have consciousnesses (which I suppose probably technically did not exist either) and after some time I was able to finally convince them all (indeed, some were a little bit slower to understand than others – they are not unlike human beings in this regard) that hey, you don’t come from a real planet and so you aren’t real.

The pets, of course, had no consciousnesses. And so this fact created quite the ruckus when the Plutonians, to whom the Plutonian pets were slavishly devoted (as is the case with real pets and their owners), were gone. So how did I solve this problem?

Well, as anyone can tell, certain pets happen to be a lot smarter than others. Then again, certain pets happen to not be so bright. And the Plutonians happened to have pets that were mostly of the doglike variety, meaning of course that these pets were not very bright. Thus most of these pets were easily dealt with with the old throw an imaginary ball into the street and let the pet chase it trick. (Now it just occurred to me that maybe since these pets themselves were not real, maybe they could see the imaginary balls that I was throwing. An interesting idea to ponder…) Now what happened when the pets ran into the streets? Well, they got hit by cars of course. (And I must say that I was particularly stunned at the eagerness of one particular little black Plutonian dog named Yelir to run without hesitation into the streets. I got the feeling that this dog would have been fooled by anything…)

Everything was going splendidly when I came to one particular peculiar looking dog. Regardless of how many times I tried to throw this imaginary ball, this dog just did not seem to want to chase it. I was getting a little frustrated when I finally decided to take a closer look at this dog. Upon closer inspection, I realized that this “dog” was in fact a hamster-dog hybrid. I know! That sounds impossible to believe. A hamster-dog hybrid cannot possibly be real (and of course it wasn’t since it was a Plutonian pet), although I can recall having seen a similar sort of creature once before in real life.

Well, it was clear that the dog instincts of the pet were not dominant so I decided that it was best to test out the animal’s hamster instincts. I thought for a moment, what could possibly lure this animal out into the street? And then it occurred to me: a hamster wheel! And so I set up an imaginary hamster wheel in the street (making sure to look both ways before walking out there – it’s important to always do this) and then walked back to the sidewalk.

With everything in place, I now had to get the hamster-dog’s attention. And so I called out to it, “Here Pako! Here Pako! Hamster wheel!” And just as I had hoped, the little hamster-dog went running out to the hamster wheel, jumped on as I turned and walked away never to worry about this little problem again.

The End.

Preview: And before you ask, no, I didn’t watch the baseball all-star game last night. And I also didn’t watch the homerun derby the night before. (In fact, I don’t even know who won the homerun contest.) Baseball just doesn’t hold the same interest for me as it did since this whole steroid “controversy” started up. If you have a problem with that, I don’t care, deal with it.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Everyone Head for the Video Store!

Okay so I'm super thrilled about the coming release (July 7th, to be precise) of the movie The Unborn on DVD and Blu-ray! I had so, so, so wanted to see...

You know what, damn it. I cannot even really pretend with this one. The movie looked awful when they were promoting it back in January, and it similarly looks awful now as for the last few days and weeks I've seen seemingly endless numbers of promotions about this wretched film's imminent release. The only thing that this film has going for it is that it has some really hot girl as the lead actress and that was evidently good enough to sucker fools around the world into spending nearly $76 million to waste at least eight-seven minutes of their lives. (You see, I did my wikipedia research.)

But why am I even bringing this up now? Well, it occurred to me the other day that the movie depictions that they have made make absolutely no sense. The Unborn is supposed to be this girl's unborn twin, right? So why in heavens is this girl in her late teens to early twenties and her unborn twin some kid that is no more than about ten years old? I mean seriously, if you wanted this film to be in anyway plausible and to have a chance at garnering the coveted Cabral Williams Seal of Approval, then you had one of two choices: either have the girl haunted by some sort of fetus looking thing or have her haunted by some dude roughly her same age.

Okay, so I guess using a fetus looking thing probably would have carried too much of a gross factor with it, but come on, having this girl haunted by a fetus would have been awesome! Okay, no it would not have been awesome; it would have been stupid. But the movie as it was made was stupid anyway. The only other plausible choice was to use an actor to play the unborn twin who is around the same age as this girl. Obviously there are quite a number of dudes out there that could have filled that frightening/creepy role. Heck, it did not take me very long to find one!

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

More Words of Wisdom from Jeff Van Gundy

So I happened to be watching the waning seconds of game three of the NBA Finals, which had the Los Angeles Lakers trailing the Orlando Magic by four points and scrambling to score a basket of any kind to cut into the Magic's lead. The Lakers had a number of shot attempts as time disappeared with the Magic unable to gather the rebound, but then the Lakers finally scored two points to cut the lead down to two with just five tenths of a second remaining on the clock. The Magic inbounded the ball to Rashard Lewis, who was quickly fouled by Kobe Bryant, and that's when the fun began.

Okay, so the fun actually began a little bit earlier when as the officials were reviewing whether a made shot by Lewis should be a three (as originally credited) or a two, Van Gundy, in looking at the replay and seeing that Lewis's foot was actually on the three point line when attempting the shot, said something along the lines of "a player is coached to never attempt a three point shot with his foot on the line." Van Gundy was seemingly forgetting, of course, that if a player's foot is on the three point line when attempting a shot, he is in fact attempting a two point shot and not a three point shot. But this was relatively minor, and I was content to leave well enough alone until the last five tenths of a second came around.

Well, after Lewis was fouled, Van Gundy said without hesitation that no matter what Lewis should miss the second of his upcoming free throws intentionally. Now this was among the stupidest things I've heard Van Gundy say during these playoffs, though it does have competition. And let me paint the entire picture so that you can get a fuller picture for why this analysis was so stupid.
  • After Bryant's foul, two tenths of a second remained on the clock.
  • The Lakers had no timeouts (and I absolutely abhor this word as I think that it should more properly be times-out) remaining.
  • Without any times-out remaining, the Lakers could not advance the ball to midcourt after a made free throw.
  • NBA rules do not allow for a player to catch and shoot a ball with under three tenths of second remaining.
  • With under three tenths of a second remaining, the only score that can be made (barring a foul of some sort prior to inbounding the ball) is a tip in attempt.
  • If Lewis did make the second free throw, the Magic would be ahead by at least three points.
  • Assuming the Magic were up by three points, the Lakers would have had to tip in a three point basket off of a pass launched from underneath the Magic's basket to tie the game.
  • Assuming the Magic were up by four points, the Lakers would have had to tip in a three point basket off of a pass launched from underneath the Magic's basket and get fouled in the process to have a chance at tying the game.

So what happened? Well, it seems that Jeff's brother Stan, the coach of the Magic, obviously does not subscribe to the dumbass strategies of his younger brother as he evidently did not instruct Lewis to miss the second free throw. Lewis made both free throws and the Magic won the game by four. (The Lakers simply inbounded the ball and allowed the last two tenths of a second to expire.)

Jeff Van Gundy is a poor analyst in my mind because it almost seems as if he has these pre-programmed strategies in his mind that he will blurt out without actually taking the time to rationally consider the scenarios. If he had truly rationally thought about the scenario with two tenths of a second remaining, he would have realized that it was (currently) humanly impossible for the Lakers to win game three at that point (absent a foolish foul of course) if Lewis made the second free throw. (If someone really, really wants me to go over the physics of this, I can certainly do so in another post.) But Jeff Van Gundy knows basketball strategy. Good call Jeff!

Thursday, June 4, 2009

The LeBron James Fake Controversy

So, some huge fake controversy has arisen lately over the fact that LeBron James left the court last Saturday night following the Cleveland Cavaliers' Eastern Conference Finals series losing game six loss without shaking the hands and congratulating the victorious Orlando Magic. People are whining aloud that James is a poor sport for not giving the Magic kudos on a job well done. And my thoughts are, of course, that all of these critics need to relax and get a grip.

Because after all, why should LeBron James give a damn what someone like Jay Mariotti thinks? And more to the point, why should LeBron James feel compelled to act in the way that someone like Jay Mariotti wants him to act? When it's all said and done, LeBron James is an adult. He is not Jay Mariotti's child (and I am kind of singling Mariotti out here because I don't think that he is very talented, but there are certainly others who have done similar whining about this non-issue) and does not have to do a damned thing that Mariotti would like for him to do.

Let's ask ourselves a few questions: Did LeBron James kill anyone? Did James injure anyone? Did James hit any traffic cops with his car? Did James hurt the feelings of the Orlando Magic players? If James did hurt the Magic players' feelings, as a result, will they be unable to play at their best in the NBA Finals? If James did hurt the Magic players' feelings and, as a result, they will be unable to play at their best in the NBA Finals, should we blame James or should we blame the Magic for being pansies? (If you so desire, please feel free to reply with your answers to these questions in the comments section.)

Okay, so I'm pretty sure that you know where I stand on this, but let me provide another example of one who has a counter opinion to my own. Alright, of course you have no idea who this author is - neither do I. However, I included this piece because of the following quote that he makes:

Professional athletes are supposed to be role models for young athletes all over the world. What is a young, aspiring LeBron fan suppose to think when he sees his idol storm off the court without shaking anyone's hand after losing?

He's probably going to side with his role model and think it's okay not to shake the winning team's hands.

Since when are professional athletes supposed to be role models for anyone? At best I think you can say that professional athletes are supposed to be role models for their own children, not yours. But let's assume for the moment that a scenario happens precisely like described above where a young athlete refuses to shake the hands of players on the opposing, winning team because he saw LeBron James refuse to do so. To the extent that there should be any "blame" assigned for this, the blame should be placed on that young athlete's parents for not teaching the athlete the "proper" way to behave after losing.

And one final point before I leave this stupid subject alone, if you are really that deeply offended by what James did, and you really feel like you have to get back at him for this horrible display of sportsmanship, I'll tell you exactly what you can do. You can stop going to his basketball games, stop watching his basketball games on TV, stop buying the products he endorses, and finally, yell and scream about how poor a sport he is and even write about how poor a sport he is. Obviously a number of people have already gotten these last couple of things down perfectly, so they only need work on the rest. Good luck, you'll show LeBron!

(Oh, and David Stern is getting involved! Fantastic!)

Sunday, May 24, 2009

American Idol Season Recap

I just realized that as a result of my lack of postings over the last several months I have neglected to provide commentary on the most recent season of American Idol that you all so dearly crave that concluded on May 20th. My apologies.

Well, here goes... It was yet another season of talentless hack singers performing in a boring, glorified karaoke competition that no one in their right mind could possibly enjoy. I did not watch any of it, but I'm completely convinced that the entire season completely sucked. The End.

Dancing with the Stars Season Recap

I just realized that as a result of my lack of postings over the last several months I have neglected to provide commentary on the most recent season of Dancing with the Stars that you all so dearly crave that concluded on May 19th. My apologies.

Well, here goes... It was yet another season of D-list pseudo-celebrities performing in a boring competition that no one in their right mind could possibly enjoy. I did not watch any of it, but I'm completely convinced that the entire season completely sucked. The End.

I Hate Idiots

Okay, this is going to be a rather short post, but I had to do it. Though you could argue that it belongs on my brand spanking new politics blog, I believe that it is probably better off here. I was just watching This Week with George Stephanopoulos and there was quite a lively debate going on with his roundtable, but my local ABC news channel, channel 13, had to interrupt for "breaking news." This breaking news was apparently that the space shuttle was about to land in less than a minute in California. Really, that's breaking news? You really felt that the fact that the shuttle was going to land in less than a minute was worthy enough to have your anchors break in to the coverage of This Week to make overwhelmingly superficial commentary about a subject about which they have limited knowledge? You people are idiots.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

NBA Western Conference Finals: Game One

After watching the end of game one of the Western Conference finals between the Nuggets and Lakers last night, I'm convinced more than ever that many (if not most) NBA analysts are idiots with little to no comprehension of sound late game strategy and clock management. In this case I will be directing my ire at Jeff Van Gundy, but I'm certain many other analysts have advocated for similar strategic errors in the past.

With 30.5 seconds left in the fourth quarter, the Nuggets trailed the Lakers 101-99 and preparing to inbound the ball at midcourt. An errant pass was intercepted by the Lakers' Trevor Ariza and recovered on the Lakers' offensive side of the court with just over twenty-eight seconds to play. And so Jeff Van Gundy said essentially that since there was a four second differential between the shot and game clocks, the Nuggets did not have to foul.

I suppose Van Gundy was technically correct, the Nuggets did not have to foul. But then again, the Nuggets also did not have to try to win the game. I'm going to assume for the moment that the Nuggets were trying to win the game and lists the steps that would likely have to take place for Van Gundy's strategy to have any chance of working.

1. Nuggets do not commit any fouls (this is after all the foundation of the entire strategy).
2. Lakers do not score on the possession.
3. Nuggets rebound presumed errant Lakers shot attempt (see number 2) with 4-5 seconds remaining.
4. Nuggets successfully inbound the ball to one of their players.
5. Nuggets score basket to either tie game (2-point attempt) or take the lead (3-point attempt).
6. If time remains, Nuggets prevent Lakers from scoring and force overtime or win game.

The overwhelming flaw in this plan is that it essentially requires every step in the plan to go flawlessly if the Nuggets are going to have any chance to win. There is almost no margin for error. And the strategy is foolishly optimistic considering the fact that the Lakers have Kobe Bryant on their team, a ruthlessly attacking player who would (a) almost certainly have the ball as time wound down and (b) stood a greater than 50% of chance of scoring on the play, getting fouled on the play (Bryant being an 85+% foul shooter), or both. And then you throw in the very real possibility that the Nuggets just might not get the rebound since Bryant would likely draw help defense, potentially leaving the helping defender's man unchecked to grab the offensive rebound, and I certainly can go on.

So what did actually happen? Well, the Nuggets had a tad bit of trouble going the entire 24 second shot clock without fouling, and so ended up fouling Bryant as he drove the lane toward the basket with right around ten seconds left. So there the Nuggets were, down two points with Bryant shooting two free throws with ten seconds left where if they had fouled immediately, they could have been down two with Bryant (or even Ariza) shooting two free throws with 26-27 seconds left. And of course Bryant did hit both of the free throws to put the Lakers up 103-99 with roughly ten seconds left.

But the absurdly stupid strategy suggestions did not end with 28 seconds remaining. Van Gundy next said that the Nuggets should not necessarily attempt a three point shot when inbounding the ball, but rather should go for the best available shot. Okay, so with ten seconds left and the Nuggets down by four points, Van Gundy thought that now the Nuggets were in the right situation to start the "quick layup-quick foul-hope the guy misses at least one free throw so that we can eventually cut it to a one possession game-oh, he didn't miss, well let's start the cycle over again by taking a quick layup" strategy. This strategy is actually a decent one that can be used to prolong a game, but not when you only have ten seconds left. (It seems like the perfect strategy to employ with, oh I don't know, 28 seconds left.) Granted, with ten seconds left, there are not going to be many more times that your team finds itself with the ball. And this means that when you are down by four points, you have to score as many points as possible on each of these very few possessions. This means taking three point shots!

So the bottom line is that Chaucey Billups wisely attempted and made a three point shot (though it should not have counted since he stepped out of bounds just prior to attempting the shot), but the Nuggets did eventually come up short, losing 105-103. There's no way to know for sure if they would have won the game if using a strategy other than the asinine Van Gundy strategy (evidently adhered to by George Karl and probably a great many other NBA coaches), but they almost certainly would have given themselves a better chance.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Where is Channel 175?!

Okay, I'm back!

And what could possibly convince me to come back after a long hiatus? (I am of course excluding my brief return yesterday to write an uncharacteristically short post.) Well, we already established in an earlier post that it cannot possibly be because I have become any less lazy over the course of time. And just to prove this point, I am way too lazy to even go back to that previous post in which I mentioned that I had unequivocally not given up being lazy.

Well, to end the suspense, what has brought me back is rage. Yes, rage. You see, the other night, as in last night, I had used the remote control to turn on the television device sitting in my living room. And as I quite often do, I was using the remote control to navigate through the different channels, most of which of suck, to see whether there was anything worth watching currently airing.

And as usual, just about everything that was on television sucked, just as one might expect of generally sucky channels. And so I was left with my standby channel, one that rarely disappoints in situations such as this: The Boomerang Network.

For those who are unaware, the Boomerang Network is Cartoon Network's sister station that broadcasts cartoons from a bygone era when the creators of the programs cared about such quaint things as interesting plots, animation, good drawing, and humor. Now granted, not every one of the shows that the network chose to air possessed all of these qualities, but most of these shows certainly seem as if the creators (a) actually took more than twenty minutes to complete individual episodes of the show and (b) believed the children watching the show were more competent and attentive than trained monkeys.

But alas, I was thwarted. And why was I thwarted? Well, because in their infinite lack of wisdom, whoever it is that decides what channels I get in my cable subscription has decided to remove Channel 175 from my list. That (those) bastard(s)! I will have my revenge! I have not completely formulated the revenge plan as of yet, but rest assured, it is being formulated. I'll have more later (unless they wise up and bring back Channel 175).

The rage is back!

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Thursday, January 22, 2009

The Neighborhood Ball

I am back! Yes, I know that there are a fair amount of people out there that have probably missed me. No really, you don't have to admit it to me, I know that it's true. What, you may be asking, was the reason for this two-month long hiatus? Well it is because I am lazy - very, very lazy. But an equally valid question that you may be asking now is why am I writing now? You may be asking whether or not I have suddenly stopped being lazy. Is it one of your New Year's resolutions to stop being lazy Cabral? Of course you can probably answer this second question yourselves. Nonsense! Absolute rubbish! But the first question still remains, and the answer to this question is that there is a matter of incredible importance that requires my immediate attention.

And this matter concerns the recent inaugural balls that took place. Now I did watch a fair amount of the inaugural events that took place earlier in the day, but admittedly I lost interest in following what was going on closely as the hours of coverage reached into the double digits. When President and First Lady Obama were at the balls, every now and then I would look up and pay attention to what they were saying, but on the whole, I gave this portion of the programming little focus. It wasn't until Wednesday morning, January 21 that a horrible truth was revealed to me. Apparently at the Neighborhood Ball, the very first ball that the President and First Lady attended (I think) the DJ for the event was Nick Cannon... Nick Cannon?!

I just cannot comprehend this... Barack Obama, you have only a few short hours ago become the President of the United States and the first inaugural ball that you attend is DJ'ed by Nick Cannon? Okay, okay, okay, I know that there was likely at least one other thing on your mind leading up to inauguration day. You probably were not completely focused on who would be appearing at what balls on that evening, but come on, Mr. President, the ball was DJ'ed by Nick Cannon!

Perhaps President Obama is too nice of a guy; perhaps he is even a nicer guy than myself (a bit of a stretch, but you never know...), but I can imagine the following scenario taking place:

Aide: "Welcome to the Neighborhood Ball, Mr. President!"
President Obama: "Thank you so much, it is a pleasure to be here."
Aide: "If you or the First Lady should need anything at all, sir, we are here to help."
P. Obama: "I thank you; you are too kind... Wait a minute, who is that DJ'ing the ball?"
Aide: "Oh, that's Nick, sir!"
P. Obama: "Nick who? Nick Lachey?"
Aide: "No, sir, it's Nick Cannon."
P. Obama: "Wait, who's Nick Cannon?"
First Lady Obama: "Oh, I think that Nick Cannon is some D-list talent that some kids find hilarious for some reason."
Aide: "That's correct Ms. First Lady! Nick Cannon is hilarious!"
P. Obama: "Wait a minute, how did Nick Cannon get chosen? Did Biden do this? I knew I should have named him Secretary of State..."
Aide: "No, Mr. President, as you instructed, we're keeping the Vice President out of sight and muzzled. I believe it was Malia and Sasha who picked Nick Cannon."
P. Obama: "Sasha and Malia picked Nick Cannon?! That's it, they're not getting that dog now!"
F.L. Obama: "But dear, we promised. We can't have your presidency starting with you breaking promises so easily. Well, if you are going to break your promises, break the promises you made to the Republicans, not the ones you made to the kids."
P. Obama: "Hmm... You're right. The kids get to have the dog, but they're not going to see the next Hannah Montana movie."