Thursday, July 31, 2008

So long to a legend

Ken Griffey Jr., who I may have mentioned a few times in this blog before, was traded today from the Cincinnati Reds to the Chicago White Sox.

Sad day, for me personally, for a number of fans, and for the Reds. When Junior came to the Reds, it was supposed to be the beginning of a Reds dynasty. It didn't end that way; in fact, the Reds have done nothing but lose games since Junior put on a uniform. That fact, however, has very little to do with Junior himself, and a lot more to do with the rest of the team on the field in those years. You know, the team that the owners and GMs put together. The only thing anyone can really say about Junior and his game is "too bad he got hurt so ofen." He's had a number of injuries as a Red, all well-documented, all of which came from playing baseball. Now he's 38 years old, has screws holding his leg together (and possibly other body parts, I'm not quite sure), and he isn't the same player we got eight years ago. It happens.

What shouldn't happen is a town getting so down on one of baseball's greatest players that I am made to feel like he is better off NOT playing here. Cincinnati doesn't deserve to have star sports players. And by "star," I mean good. Because when this city does have them (Junior, Barry Larkin, Chad Johnson, Corey Dillon, and hell, even the Bengals "star" coach, Marvin Lewis), the city shits all over them. Supposed baseball fans here, for the most part, can't stand Junior. They couldn't stand Barry Larkin either. And both of those players went to high school here! Larkin grew up in Cincinnati, played for the Reds his whole career as an outstanding shortstop, and when it was all said and done, people couldn't wait to see him go. Is it because they're black? I don't know. Judging by the way this town treats Adam Dunn, who is white, it seems like anyone is fair game. Anyone, that is, who is good at what they do and get paid nicely to do it.

I don't know which provides the fuel for the fire, the fans or the media. Both, I know. Both are horrible, and should just shut the fuck up already. Junior is gone now, you got what you wanted, move on. But no. 700 WLW AM aired a faux promo today, the day Junior was traded, that included clips of the press conference from when Junior first came to the Reds and ended with the line "Now the question remains, who will be the next Reds half-asser?" Because, you know, that's all Junior has done as a baseball player is half-ass his way through his career. That's why he has 608 career home runs -- the sixth most ever in the history of the game. That's why when his hamstring was literally torn off his bone, he had surgery to screw it back in place and came back to play baseball for this team. That's why he signed a ridiculously cheap deal to come here in the first place. To half-ass it.

Giving me a fucking break WLW. I know you're a bunch of assholes that consistently try to one-up each other on the controversy carousel that is your hatred radio station, but at least try to do it with some humor or sarcarsm. Or, I don't know, find an appropriate target for your hatred and anger. Junior isn't the reason the Reds suck. They're going to continue to suck tomorrow too, while Junior puts on a jersey for a first-place team. I'm sure you couldn't stand the fact that he wanted nothing to do with your station. (Gee, I wonder why.) So don't bother to try to ask yourselves why that was and do something about it. Instead, take your cheap shots. Puff out your chests. Whine. Cry. Whatever. Lose listeners such as myself. I never listened to anything other than Reds games on WLW anyway, and now those are a thing of the past as well. I don't need blathering idiots to try to sell me on Ken fucking Griffey Junior being a half-assed player. It is, in fact, one of the most ridiculous things I've ever heard on that station. And that is saying something.

I wish Junior all the best, and I guess I'm now an instant White Sox fan. It's a bittersweet ending to a bittersweet story full of bitter people. But this town doesn't deserve someone of Junior's caliber to grace it's baseball diamond. This town's attitude toward him and others is nothing but disgrace. I feel for Adam Dunn; he already takes an obscene amount of unjustified criticism here, and with favored-whipping-boy Junior out of the picture, Dunn will get buried under the local sewage that poses as fans and sports talk radio. He and his agent need to do some work this offseason and find another team for Dunn to play for, because Cincinnati surely isn't worthy of his talent.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Why I've been M.I.A.


No new blogs from me recently because I can't tear myself away from playing Viva Pinata. It's just the cutest game ever. You have a garden in which you grow plants and attract animals, then you can build houses for the animals, name them, mate them, feed them to other animals, etc. It's adorable, and incredibly addicting. I would love to hear parents explain it to their children though. This game calls mating "romancing" ... and some of the "romancing" dances are a little out there.

So, that's what I've been doing for the past week. Completely monopolizing the TV/Xbox.

The bad part is, the second Viva Pinata game comes out next month, so there's really no end in sight. And on top of that, I have the new Civilization to play, which I'm super excited about. And then, Rock Band 2 comes out in September!! The set list is looking good. I've played the first one an obscene amount. So much so that, at times, my fingers hurt for days.

I might have a problem here.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

A birthday miracle!

In my last blog, I had said I would like a new cell phone for my birthday (which is today, by the way) because mine had quit ringing. Everything else about it works just fine still, but no ringing or other audio was coming from the phone. Quite annoying.

I took it in yesterday, thinking I'd be getting a new phone altogether, but to my surprise they were able to fix it! Just took the back off, took out the battery, blew some compressed air in it, and it worked! Very exciting, and saved me at least $100 ... for now, anyway. I'll have to get a new eventually, I'm sure. But to treat myself and my phone, I got a new ringtone: the Super Mario theme music. Yay!

My birthday is obviously the most important thing that's happened on July 6, but here's some other events on this date (thanks to Wikipedia):
  • In 1785, the dollar was chosen as the form of currency for the United States.
  • In 1885, Louis Pasteur successfully tested the vaccine for rabies.
  • In 1928, the first all-talking movie was shown: "The Lights of New York."
  • In 1933, the first Major League Baseball All-Star game was played at Comiskey Park.
  • In 1942, Anne Frank and her family went into hiding.
  • Frida Kahlo, Nancy Reagan, Merv Griffin, Janet Leigh, Ned Beatty, George W. Bush, Burt Ward, Sylvester Stallone, Geoffrey Rush, Nanci Griffith and 50 Cent were born on this day. And for the record, 50 Cent is a year older than me.
  • William Faulkner, Louis Armstrong and Roy Rogers died.
  • The countries of Comoros, Czech Republic, Lithuania and Malawi celebrate statehood/independence days.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Give the gift of gifts!

My birthday is coming up alarmingly soon. Alarmingly, I will be 32 years old. That doesn't sound right at all, but so be it. I feel like I'm 23, I know I act like I'm still 23, and that's the inverse of 32, so I'm close, right?

If anyone is wondering what to get me, I have a suggestion: This amazing set of Super Mario wall decals from Blik ...


How fun would it be to have a game room decorated like that?? Of course, that would require me owning a house ... so if you REALLY want to be a good friend, you can buy me a house and I'll take care of the decals myself. :)

Blik has a lot of interesting decals. I hope to one day be able to buy some and put them to good use. I especially like the ones in the threadless category.

Other birthday gifts I'd like:
  • Money!
  • DVDs of the movies Bull Durham and High Fidelity. (I cannot figure out how I don't own these yet).
  • Gift cards!
  • A new cell phone. Mine stopped ringing. It still works, but if you call or text me it doesn't ring or beep. So unless I feel/see/hear it vibrate, I have no idea when anyone's trying to get in touch with me. Fun.
  • Gift certificates!
  • A Ken Griffey Jr. T-shirt that is not red.
  • A new bed.
All of this is a joke. I don't expect any gifts. But one of these years, I will throw myself a proper birthday party and invite everyone I've ever met in my life and expect them all to bring fabulous gifts.

Ray and I went to the Reds game tonight, and thanks to my place of employment, we had really nice (and free!) seats. About 20 rows behind the Reds' dugout. Great view of the game, was nice to see Jay Bruce's two home runs and Adam Dunn's bomb of a home run, but the loss sucked. I am 0-3 this year. Blah. However, we did get to see Mr. Redlegs up close and personal, at the end of our row:


He's pretty terrifying, but you can't look away.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

603 is a winner on 6-30

Ken Griffey Jr.'s 603rd career home run happened to be a game winner tonight for the Reds. Exciting stuff! He didn't start the game, but he hit this in the bottom of the ninth after being put in at the top of the ninth. The Reds were down by one, they had a guy on second base, Junior comes to bat, one swing and the Reds win. So pretty. Surprisingly it's only his fifth walk-off home run ever. And four of the five have come with the Reds. Weird on both accounts. What's more is, the Reds are now ahead of the Pirates in the standings ... by 0.01 percent. Hilarious. Look out Astros, we're coming at you for fourth place!!

By the way, two years ago today Adam Dunn did something that has happened only 13 other times in the history of Major League Baseball: He hit a game-winning grand slam in the bottom of the ninth inning with two outs. That means the Reds were down by three runs, had the bases loaded, there were two outs, and Dunn knocked one out of the park to win the game by a run. It's incredible to think about how rare that is to see. Here's the game story, and there's a link to watch his grand slam there too.

Can't let June 30 pass without noting the semi-death of Windows XP. I haven't used Vista yet, not even once anywhere, so I have no idea if it's as bad as everyone says. It sure hasn't gotten good word-of-mouth reviews though, and I generally hate changes that involve how I use my computer, so I'm going to avoid it as long as possible. At least Microsoft will still be supporting it with updates and whatnot for a few years.

Also on this date, in 1986: The U.S. Supreme Court rules that states could outlaw homosexual acts between consenting adults.

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