Sunday, January 24, 2010

NFL Madness!

We're finally here! The penultimate football games where we finally determine who gets to go to the Super Bowl and play a football game in between the commercials. Traditionally, I'd have at least one strong rooting interest in the games, whether because I'm a fan of one of the teams and they therefore are a paragon of football (Steelers, Panthers, or Cardinals) or because I dislike one of the teams and they don't deserve better than perpetual agony in defeat (Cowboys, Patriots, or Eagles). However, this year there are no villains. In fact, all the remaining teams are unusually sympathetic.

Indianapolis Colts- They're the closest thing to a villain left in the playoffs, having won their 2nd championship in franchise history in 2006. A brief history of the Colts reads as follows "Johnny Unitas, 25 years of shame and ignominy, Peyton Manning." Since they're led by America's favorite salesman/quarterback, so it's impossible to begrudge him a second championship (not counting his Double Stuff Racing League championship). On an unrelated note, I suddenly feel compelled to buy lots and lots of Oreos.

New York Jets- Ironically, their only championship came at the expense of the Colts. And now their road back to the Super Bowl involves beating up the Colts. Now, I don't mean to suggest that the Colts are to the Jets as Spinach is to Popeye the Sailor... wait a second, yes I do! But I digress. The Jets haven't won a championship in 40 years and are being led by a bunch of rookies. Maybe I'm biased, but I like the idea of employees fresh out of college thriving in their respective industry.

New Orleans Saints- Interesting fact: Before 2006, the Saints never sold all their tickets in a season. Since 2006, they've sold out all their games every year. Bonus Fact: Drew Brees joined the Saints in 2006. Conclusion: Drew Brees earned his paycheck. New Orleans has never been to a Super Bowl and this is only their second conference championship game ever. I could go on about how even the great Drew Brees is a lovable misfit, but I'm running out of time before kick off.

Minnesota Vikings- The Vikings are arguably my favorite team that I never actually root for. I don't have any reason to like that region of the country, but Minnesota has two huge advantages. One, they're the only major sports team named the Vikings that I know of, and I freakin' love Vikings. Two, they wear purple, my favorite color that I have no excuse to ever wear under any circumstance. Three, the last two powerhouse forces to wear purple into battle were the Utah Jazz (my favorite basketball team, on account of the amount of dinosaurs found in Utah) and the Roman Senate (my favorite ancient government). But I digress. The Vikings also have never won a Super Bowl. Oh, also, a Vikings victory would justify the hype we gave Brett Favre this summer.

All right, let's enjoy some football today!

Monday, January 11, 2010

Winter Break In Review

As I write this, the forced march known as College is just days away from resuming. I don't exactly hate school, but it's hard to be enthusiastic when winter break seemingly flew by. For most students, MTSU's winter break was a decent length. They finished finals by the 17th of December and don't have so much as a syllabus to worry about until January 14th. However, between New Orleans and housing responsibilities (specifically spring training, but not the fun baseball kind), my break lasted about half as long (December 22nd through January 7th). New Orleans was crazy fun (more on that later, but that story would take too long for me to work out tonight), but it left me with an impossible situation. I had a little more than two weeks to get in the essentials of break. Those essentials are as follows:

  1. Seeing High School Friends
  2. Sleeping
  3. Partying
  4. Purging the Horrors of Last Semester from Your Mind
Now, I've never been a prolific party person, mostly because I come up with random alliteration that no one appreciates in a party setting (unlike a blog, where the brilliance is preserved in glorious HTML for all eternity). It also doesn't help that I'm not a big drinker, which is a requirement for college parties. It's not because of any moral issues I have with alcohol or because I can't control myself. I just can't stand the taste of booze. I believe it's because I have the taste buds of a twelve year old, because I also can't stand the taste of coffee (unless it is significantly more milkshake than coffee). However, this is probably for the best for mankind if you think about it. I'm already louder and more enthusiastic than about 99.5% of the world population, so does society really want to see what would happen if I turned to one of the most potent stimulants? The answer is yes, but only if they want to see me explode. As for alcohol, it is famous for its ability to lower people's inhibitions. For most people, this helps them unwind a bit. Unfortunately, I have precious few inhibitions to begin with (as Bean can attest to if you bring up the "Ear Lobe" incident from High School) so consuming alcohol could result in negative inhibitions. That means I would respond to something before it happened, breaking a fundamental rule of causality and lead to the entire universe collapsing on itself from the subsequent insanity.

In summary, by not drinking, I ensure that the entire universe does not implode.

That sounds much cooler than "Hates the taste" and is equally accurate (probably).

But I digress, the point of all that is while I am not much of a party person in the traditional collegiate sense, I did hang out with a lot of good friends all at once. On a related note, most of them were high school friends who I have kept close contact with during college. At high school graduation, one of the valedictorians said that we would likely not see anyone from high school again after graduation (or something to that effect). To her I say "Suck it!". I can be petty too!

Really, the only aspect in which this break was disappointing was the lack of sleeping until 2 PM and the lack of purging the horrors of how soul-crushingly bad History of American Sports was.

So that was my break in summary. Here are a few final quick thoughts from today's news that I care about:
  • Sarah Palin joined Fox News as a contributor, creating the largest lightning rod of hate the Huffington Post has ever encountered.
  • Pete Carroll leaves sunny USC that brought him fame and fortune for dreary Seattle in a league where he was an average coach at best. This means that the NCAA is about to crack something big on Carroll and USC flagrantly violating recruitment rules. As usual, the NCAA is a day late and a dollar short since everyone involved in the recruiting violation will have already received huge paydays and fled to the safety of the NFL (not that that will stop USC from being hammered down).
  • Mark McGwire admits to using steroids in his record (and bicep) shattering season in 1998. In a related story, the sky admits to being blue.