Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Welcome, Eric!

We at Red Sox Nation welcome our new bullpen-strengthening master, Eric Gagne!

Boston acquired Gagne from Texas today before the MLB trade deadline, giving up rookie starter Kason Gabbard, and minor league outfielders David Murphy and Engel Beltre.

Gagne (2-0, 2.16 ERA and 16 saves) will help setup closer Jonathan Papelbon and close when Paps needs a day off to rest after all these wins in a row.

Yeah, losing a lefty prospect like Gabbard might sting next spring when Schilling might be gone, but this is a win-now-figure-out-the-rest-later world, and we want another World Series! Go Sox!

UPDATE - Even better! The Sox managed to convince the Cardinals to take Joel Pineiro off our hands. *snicker*

Maria finally reveals her truth and Megan is grounded

The most wickedly awesome summer reality dating show to date - and there have been many - "Age of Love" is finally descending into an inevitable conclusion next week in which Amanda's confundus charm will convince Mark to choose her. And they will date for six weeks, whereupon he'll remember that there are tons of groupies just like her and more attractive on the professional tennis tour, and she'll be crying back home wondering why she didn't realize he looked at other women. And off in the distance, as if carried by the wind, she will hear a cackle, and she will wonder, "Why did that sound like Jayanna?"

We begin with the final four, and we're told that by the end of the night we'll be down to two! Will we end up with one 20 and one 40? Two 20s? Will Amanda kill two women, doing Mark's job for him? Let's find out!

As we begin, Jen is crying about Jayanna's exit, and then she receives a gift of revenge when the producers play a video to the women by Jayanna, who accuses Amanda of lying to Mark, "She's going to do whatever it takes to get her guy." Juicy! Even in departure, Jayanna remains awesomely pretentiously bitchy.

Of course, Amanda may have misled Mark about Jayanna's lecture, but not by much. Jayanna did tell Amanda to stop being naive about Mark's affection to all the women.

In the first date of the night, Mark takes Maria and Amanda salsa dancing. None of them have any experience, so that makes it all the more entertaining, not to mention the outfits chosen for the women. Amanda barely has any clothes on at all in this skimpy red and black outfit, while Maria has this one-piece with a tutu-like skirt that is so silver that she if she spun around fast enough she'd look like a disco ball. Seriously, she looked like an Alice in Wonderland reject.

Once on the floor, Maria proceeds to dance around Mark - who is almost still, he's moving so little - as if he's the stripper pole and she's the stripper. Amanda's not as provocative, though her skirt's so short she spends much of her time with her left hand pulling it down in the back. Could've been a new dance craze, though I doubt it. My dance moves consist mostly of "White Guy Hopping, a.k.a. flailing my arms once second and using both hands to keep my pants up the next, so I sympathize.

After the dancing, Maria is sweating and panting like, well, a 40-year-old who just salsa stripped, and Amanda's just fine, like a hockey team dancer who does it for a living, yet still displayed little skill on the floor. Maria then ruined any chances of lasting by asking Mark, "If this is your last date with me and Amanda, what would you say."

Um, what? Buzzkill questions like that will indeed make it your last date with him, Maria. She really needs to reign in this whole "this is my truth" hippie crap, 'cause I'm starting to get at why she's single and in her 40s and on a cheesy dating show.

20s Megan gets a solo date with Mark, though far too sophisticated for her, it's a High Tea, where she gets to pronounce "crumpets" about three different ways. Mark's being far too polite by saying that Megan makes him laugh. As Val says, it's because Megan's a twit and says stupid things, so you either laugh or jump out of a moving car. Mark chooses to laugh. Megan wonders the entire time why a 40 didn't get this date, since she's obviously a sorority beer and pretzels kind of girl, and curious as to why Mark hasn't tried to slip any E in her drink yet. She likes that kind of attention. (Okay, I made that up.)

Finally, Jen has her fantasy date, Mark arriving in a big ball carriage all lit up so as to see it better on the deserted L.A. streets at night from above. Back at the hotel, Megan and Amanda don't try to hide their jealousy, Megan wanting to play dress-up, Amanda grunting as if Mark's cheating on her. Because, like, he's totally her boyfriend and she's already practicing her signature, "Amanda Fillapoosis," er, "Amanda Philipipousisis," uh, "Amanda Philippisispis," screw it, "Amanda P."

Don't bother going to iVillage for their "Age of Love" site, as advertised during the show. Mark's blog is so boring and recappy that he doesn't even mention the biggest "controversy" of the show, his late-night "massage" session in the dark with Jen. Unless "and just enjoyed each other's company" is what the kids are calling it nowadays.

Could be, actually. This is from the site that is so objective *cough* politically as to feature bloggers with such posts as "Are All Men Pigs?," "News Just In--Happy Childfree Couples!" and "A Question for Pro-Lifers," where a pro-abortion feminist thinks she's devised some clever trap where pro-lifers want to send women to jail, and a blog that asks your preferred song for stripping. (Did Maria write that one?)

Anyway, the next morning Jen gets Jayanna her revenge, telling Amanda about how they went back to Mark's room at 2 a.m. and traded massages, all the while Amanda looks extraordinarily ticked off. Going over the top, awesomely, Jen relays that "It was bad, I don't think (the producers) can use half the stuff." She's really poking a giant Jayanna stick at Amanda here, and it's delicious!

Oh, rewind. During their date, Jen asks Mark if he's fantasized anything about her, he admits that he has. He is a guy, of course, so I'm guaranteeing he's fantasized about all of them. Even Mary, though no doubt she cries before, during and after, even in his fantasy.

Also, during the date, Mark pronounced Aloe, "Ah-low-ay." That's okay, he's Australian, so English isn't his first language.

It's time for one-on-one time before Mark eliminates one of the women. Before, Maria again says that she's going to walk away, again telling us that she doesn't feel a connection. And then, surprisingly, she goes through with it! Mark acts surprised, says he was going to ask her to stay, though when he says "I like you," it sounds more like, "To drink beers with and occasionally sleep with when we get drunk, and never talk about it." Anyway, Maria gives her "I have to go" drivel. Who is she, Obi-Wan?

Megan's one-on-one time lasts fifteen seconds, literally. Neither even says a full sentence. I was sure she was a goner after that. Jen's time is full of "my heart is in this" and gooey. Then Amanda walks in and immediately tells Mark she didn't appreciate his "massage therapy" with Jen. It feels like a wife confronting a husband who is too touchy-feely with female friends. Awk. Ward. Mark's forced to give the "she means nothing" speech, because Amanda is 25, but 15 emotionally.

Down to three, Mark announces that they're all going to Australia for the finale! Around this point, Val and I are terribly confused, because the preshow announcer voice promised two would be gone tonight. Also, where was the random host/Ripa's husband during this show? Why bother having him show up at all?

Shortly we learn why two are leaving tonight, and Mark eliminated neither. Megan is terrified to fly, and the thought of flying all the way to Australia, which is, like, a U.S. territory so far away, and how the heck do you pronounce "Qantas," anyway?

So Megan wanted to date a professional tennis player. Did she expect to follow him by bus or boat all the time?

Doesn't matter. As they are boarding, Megan has a full-blown panic attack, crying, unable to breathe, needing a big glass of High Tea. As Mark walks her to the taxi, they have their first kiss, a goodbye kiss. Unseen, the other two women showing Megan how it's done, downing a dozen of the tiny liquor bottles before the flight takes off.

Next week, Amanda and Jen duke it out in Australia! Which one will make the first "shrimp on the barbie" reference? Which one will ask Mark what's in his kangaroo pouch *wink*?

Technically, since Jen is 18 years older than Mark, shouldn't he have to choose between Jen and a 12-year-old? Wouldn't that be a fairer test? Amanda's only five years younger, which makes next week inevitable, right?

Saturday, July 28, 2007


Finally, I finished the final Potter book, "The Deathly Hollows!"

This is a spoiler post, so add your comments about the book!

Friday, July 27, 2007

Still Pottering

Neither my wife nor I have finished "The Deathly Hollows" yet, but we look forward to spirited discussions just as soon as we finish the last 130 pages tonight!

In case you were wondering, and I know from the comments some were, we bought our own copies, and have been reading at each our own opportunity. Val was able to catch up the past two nights when I had to go to bed early to work the morning shift.

Tonight, we're both off, we're taking it easy, and we're finishing this book, daggumit! It's been too difficult trying to avoid spoilers!


The Good Morning Memphis crew and talent spent the morning at the main library, because hey, why not? There are books, and magazines, and, you know, stuff.

The highlight? A bit of my adolescence, an appearance by 80s pop star Tiffany, aka "The One Who Isn't Debbie Gibson." I was all set not to like her, being a Debbie fan, and really, you can't like both (it isn't possible), but Tiffany was very nice and accommodating, taking pictures signing autographs, though I'm not sure anyone got her to sign the Playboy she appeared in.

Tiffany even sang "I Think We're Alone Now," which you'd think she might refuse to do for another twenty years. She even invited all of the Fox13 folks to the concert for free tomorrow night, but alas, I must work. Bummer.

Wonder if Debbie's coming anytime soon ....?

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Chicken Jeff

The Red Sox need another infusion, so I'm going to post a "crap, we're going to blow this" post, even though they just won five in a row.
Why? Because despite winning five of six, they lost a 1 1/2 in the standings to the dang Yanks. How is that possible? Because the dang Yanks won as many, plus they earned a half-game for winning both ends of a doubleheader against the "couldn't beat an AAU squad" Devil Rays. Ridiculous. Maybe Dad can give the boys from the Fens a boost when he attends the series in Tampa this weekend.
Did I mention the Sox have the best record in the majors?

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

40s crashing and burning

If ever I needed a week to prove that 20s Amanda (the Predators dancer) was using some sort of Jedi mind trick over Mark Philiwhippedis, this week fits the bill. In an extremely entertaining week that spent almost the entire time in the great outdoors, the 40s self-destructed and Amanda emerged as the only possible winner of this wicked awesome summer dating spectacle.
Down to the final five, consisting of 20s Amanda and Megan, and 40s Jen, Jayanna and Maria, the show moved from the 20s vs. 40s shtick into the next dimension: Every woman for herself.
Stereotypically sorority girl ditz Megan spent most the time drunk and unable to remember what she said or did, which was to sabotage any chances she had by telling Mark that she "didn't know" how she felt; Amanda let Jayanna get into her head by telling her she was getting too goo-goo eyed too fast over Mark; Jayanna herself was overly arrogant and during Truth or Dare showed her bare butt to everyone (remember, the girl who gets naked first in horror shows like this gets the dramatic first ax); Maria, after ignoring the fact that twice she's said she was going to volunteer to go only to take it back when Mark asked her to stay, whined about her "truth," and when Jen giggled Maria went off on her, accused Jen of "laughing at women" and made the 48-year-old cry.
Need I even mention that Mark made out with all of them again at some point?
What made the episode was during Jayanna's "date" with Mark on the camping trip, a jealous Amanda, who flat out thinks of Mark as her boyfriend, tried to find them, only to wander aimlessly before returning and crashing in Mark's tent so as to be there when he returned. Mark snuggled up to her when he returned, whereupon Amanda confided to Mark that Jayanna tried to lay seeds of doubt in her head, that Mark has made out with everyone and Amanda was naive for thinking he was only into her.
Mark then did Amanda's bidding the next morning, going off on Jayanna, giving her neither a goodbye kiss or hug, and left her at the campsite while returning to the hotel with the final four.
What's left? More crying and petulant whining, I hope, but I do know one thing, Mark is owned by Amanda, game, set, match.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Brief trip

Val and I got back from a 20-hour jaunt to Florence, Alabama, visiting with most of her Jackson friends, just in time for me to get to work. We drove up at 4 yesterday after she got off work, and had to leave at 12:30 this afternoon for the nearly three hour drive. That's a quick trip!
Not that we didn't have a great time, of course. We grilled out (Michael had the burgers, I handled hot dogs, on Michelle's new grill), joked around, and played Trivial Pursuit, which Val and I won. Our marriage agreement is that she carries the load in card games, I do my part at trivia, especially worthless knowledge that no one needs to know. 
Making it faster on the drive home, Val read the first few chapters of The Deathly Hollows to me, once we found it. Can you believe that the book wasn't at K-Mart, yet next door at Kroger there were plenty? And that's why K-Mart can't stay open anymore.
I beg all of you, no spoilers! No insinuation at all, please, of what happens! It may take me a few extra days, whereas many of you are already finished, I know!

Friday, July 20, 2007

Red Sox freefalling?

Pardon me if I'm premature, but it comes natural for me, the Red Sox are sucking a big fat lemon. The dang Yanks are within 7 games, the Sox have lost three in a row and are 3-7 their last ten games, and they couldn't get a clutch hit if a beach ball was floating over the plate.
The first dang Yanks fan who says, posts or hints at the year 1978 gets a spork in the knee.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

40s making 20s look silly

Val and I finally caught up with the last two weeks of the most awesome summer reality show since "Joe Millionaire," and boy did we miss some juicy bits!

For two weeks on "Age of Love" it seemed as if 20s Amanda had some sort of Jedi mind hold on Mark Philimanwhoresis with her starry eyes, as he kicked off who I thought were her closest competition: Adelaide and Lynn, and then Tessa and Kelli. I swear he eliminated them because he wanted Amanda to feel more comfortable about her chances. She flat-out thinks of him as her boyfriend already. When anyone else goes on a date or even talks about Mark, she stares at them, hoping her Jedi powers will burst them into flames.

This week's exit of Mary was likely an act of charity. Val and I would bust out laughing every time he would ignore her or change the subject when she tried to have a conversation, and the girl has three settings: Loony, bitchy and crying. The latter is the one most often turned on. In last week's show, I set the over/under beforehand at six times she would start bawling, whether on the show or in the confessionals. She hit five by the halfway mark, and cleared nine by the end of the show. Unfortunately, the DVR decided to stop and delete the show with 15 minutes remaining, so I missed the glory of watching her humiliated and crying upon hearing that Mark just isn't into her.

Okay, I sauntered over to the website and Mary's bio says that she "has found that dating in Los Angeles is horrible and blames this for the reason why she has not found the man of her dreams." No sister, that ain't the reason. Time to look inward. You're bats**t crazy. I don't even know what her job description, means, "Hemodialysis Technician," but I have a feeling is has something to do with the way she pushes her chest together to puff out at every occasion. Not that I blame her, what with Amanda stealing cantaloupes to put under her shirt all day long.

There really is a difference in these two generations, which is what makes the show most interesting. The 40s come across much more comfortable with themselves and the situation, while the 20s come across flighty, shallow and unsure about what they want out of life other than a hot rich famous guy on a reality show. Which is what we all want, am I right?

Although, it's also interesting to see how the 40s will let anything go to fit the way they hope the dates are going. This week, Jayanna was excited that while laying down during a movie that both she and Amanda attended with Mark, that he was facing her for the most part. Then we find out that he was only facing her because Amanda was giving him a back rub under the blanket they all shared, and he was holding hands with Amanda the entire time. Remember a few weeks ago, Kelli couldn't tell that Mark was doing everything he could to get away from her during a competition, and he had no choice but to have dessert with her. Maria's just getting on my nerves. Twice in three weeks she's said that she was out the door, but when he asks her to stay, she gets all gooey eyed and shuts up.

At least 48-year-old Jen has the right idea, spend what time you can with him, show that you are still sexy despite the age difference, kiss him like he's never been kissed before and let him figure it out. He still won't pick her, but she's going at it the right way.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Yeah, we're back

Hey folks! We did in fact return Sunday from Chickasaw State Park and our vacation, but I've had to work Sunday, Monday and this evening, so I'm still mostly without internet access. I only had a few minutes to reply to comments last night before crashing at midnight while trying to program the DVR to record the World Series of Pop Culture on VH1.
The main event was Friday afternoon, Val's cousin Rachel's wedding to her beau, Brandon. Her dad, Alan, asked if I would videotape the wedding, which I was very happy to do, at the church and again tape the important parts of the reception at Sagamore Lodge at the park.
My mom-in-law was in charge of the decorating and food, as usual with friends and family members who want a personal touch without spending a fortune, since she only charges food, and she has her own supplies. For us, that means that the rest of us are her helpers, cleaning up, packing the supplies and putting up tables and chairs after everyone else leaves. That's hard work! But totally worth it, and a fun bonding experience. Still, I was more sore from that than any of the swimming or walking around the park during the week.
Okay, so we didn't exactly do a lot of exercise. At the lake we floated around most of the time, playing with Cody and his buds, Cody W. and Kevin, who could start a wrestling match just fighting on a raft, or over a football, all in the hopes of impressing any hot teenage girls who happen by. I miss being a teenager.
They also arranged a practical joke on us, sandbagging a poker match to hide in our cabin until we walked in, where they (including cousin Stacy) jumped out, yelled, fired cap guns and got yelled at by Val, who was more ticked that they left our cabin unlocked after taking our key to presumably get ice cream during the poker match. Still wondering why Kevin felt the need to turn the power off to the cabin, when all they had to do was turn out all the lights. It's not like I had a remote control to turn the lights on while outside. I fought the urge to retaliate by removing Kevin's tires during the night. Alan got them for us, it turns out, by putting on one of those "Celebrate Diversity" bumper stickers with a rainbow to denote homosexuality, and the boys didn't notice until they got home. Thanks, Alan!
Otherwise, we played lots of poker until well past midnight, watched movies, ate a lot of good food and slept in. Good times. Hopefully I'll have pictures by the weekend, since tomorrow and Thursday are my off days this week.

Friday, July 13, 2007

Number Five

Good morning, sunshines! It's early, early, early, and I'm back at work this Friday morning. I managed about, oh, two hours of sleep last night before deciding to just get up already at 12:15 a.m. and drive the hour-and-a-half to work. The drive was pleasant. Being here is not. I'll leave here at 9, hurry back to Chickasaw, take a nap and then video Val's cousin Rachel's wedding at 3 this afternoon. I'll be using the help of my good friends, Mr. Caffeine and his close friend Dame Chocolate to assist.
Thursday, Val and I went into Henderson and their two-screen movie theater to see the new Harry Potter flick, "Order of the Phoenix."
Quickly, it's not as good as No. 3, "Prisoner of Azkaban," or No. 4, "Goblet of Fire." I wasn't a fan of the direction; the film is dingy, Harry's emotionally tortured far too much, the flashbacks and use of the Daily Prophet covers as exposition are overdone and I kept feeling that something didn't feel right. Notably, the joy of attending a Harry Potter movie. Also, I didn't care for the actress who played Tonks, and did Lupin even say a word for the entire two hours and 15 minutes?
There are plenty of positives, of course, including Luna Lovegood, the showdown between Voldemort and Dumbledore at the end (love the use of Earth's elements, esp. fire and water as weapons), the scenes with Dumbledore's Army, and how the nasty Delores Umbridge's pink outfits stood out like a sore wand among the depressed Hogwarts' students.
No matter what, I'd give a Harry Potter film four stars out of five. That's my baseline. This one doesn't get over that mark, unfortunately. Maybe it's because we had a crying baby beside us the entire time (and a mother who gave the baby those noisy keys to play with when it cried!), but more likely, the vision the director had didn't match the vision I had in my noggin when reading the book.
Also, Val and I are wondering why it seems the prophecy in the movie doesn't match the one in the book? And in the book, Bellatrix doesn't kill Sirius in the climactic showdown, so what's up with the movie? That was a Greedo-shoots-first moment for me. What the heck?
(We'll be back after lunch Sunday to the world of the internet, so I'll finally be able to catch up on email, comments and whatnot. See you then!)

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Balco Bonds

Giants fans are the only ones taking Barry Bonds' side during all the steroid talk as he gets ready to pass Hank Aaron. How did he thank them when the All-Star Game cames to San Francisco? With arrogance and all but a spit on their shoes.
Before going 0-for-2 Tuesday night, Barry admitted to partying all night, saying, "the party was more fun." Monday night, Barry sat out the premiere event of the week, the Home Run Derby, for reasons only known to him, instead of exciting his hometown fans with shots into McCovey Cove and a tip of the cap to those who cheer him instead of tossing giant asterisks at him.
The man needs a publicist. Or he's just an a***ole. I'm going for the latter.

Vacation update

I'm at work during an unwanted respite from our vacation at Chickasaw State Park. While my wife and her family are undoubtedly floating on the lake or playing games, I'm trapped in the control room of WHBQ until 10 o'clock, after which I still have to drive an hour-and-a-half back. I'll do it again Friday morning from about 4a to 9a. Great.

Except for some clouds and rain that have dampened the length of time we've spent at the lake, vacation has been exactly what we want it to be: Relaxing.

Game and card tournaments that last into the wee hours, lots to eat that's not the least bit healthy, flip-flops, lumpy beds in the cabins and not a care about the outside world at all. That's vacation.

Okay, one care. Apparently there was a big ugly snake wrapped inside the screen door at Val's parents' cabin as last night's poker match was finishing. They called the park ranger to find out what **@#%@#%!@#$ put !@#$@#$!@#$ snakes in the cabin, and make sure it wasn't a water moccasin, which are known to be in the area. And hopefully the boys didn't put it under our deck.

It's also questionable as to whether we'll be allowed in any restaurants any more this week, next year or the years thereafter. Henderson, Tenn. seems to be uncomfortable dealing with loud parties of 20. There's not enough tea in the town to support such a horde.

Sunday, July 08, 2007

Radio silence

It's vacation time! Later today, Val and I will be joining her Dad's side of the family for the annual Howell vacation at Chickasaw State Park, about an hour-and-a-half away, south of Jackson near Henderson, Tenn. You might recall that last year was my first to join my soon-to-be clan there.

(To give you an idea of how long they've been vacationing there, Val and cousin Phoebe are pictured on the cover of the brochure for the park, taken when they were about 14 years old.)

Actually, it's only a pseudo-vacation for me. I still have to work Sunday evening, Wednesday evening and Friday morning. I'll be commuting from cabin five, where Val and I stayed for my birthday last year, the week before the wedding.

Even though I'll be working, remember I don't have Internet at work and thus I'll be unable to check email or the blog or anyone else's blog. My apologies.

With the passing of Valerie's grandfather, this year will be full of reflection, stories and some sadness, but also joyful, with cousin Rachel getting married on Friday in Henderson and the reception at the old lodge at the park.

See y'all in a week!

Saturday, July 07, 2007

Some people are born to do a job

At least seeing this guy's name on the wall of the funeral home last week gave us a giggle:

Friday, July 06, 2007

Age of Love update

Last week on Age of Love, the 40s met the 20s, who, not surprisingly, are ditzy, poor conversationalists and have big ta tas. Our bachelor, Mark PhiliGreekorAussieisis notes the 40s are fun, confident and actually have something to talk about, all the while we're 99.9% sure he'll pick one of the 20s anyway.

I'm not sure you should trust me on that, though, since I went 0-for-2 Monday night. My favorite of the 20s - Adelaide - was given the heave ho, and my favorite of the 40s - Lynn - followed close behind.

Who should you lay odds on now? Amanda of the 20s. Sure, she's a Nashville Predators dancer (that's right, a hockey dancer), but I'm betting the only conversations they'll have is whether he likes ketchup on his hot dogs and his favorite member of N'Sync. (I'm betting on Lance.)

What I'm saying is, is that the 40s won't be making any stupid jokes about tennis, like, "I always heard that Love-40 was bad, but we're doing alright."

For future reference, we should also provide a key to what is being said to what Mark Philifakeis actually means:

"I like what's behind her great smile." = She's got big boobs.

"She's really fun." = Check out those boobs.

"I can't believe she's 48." = Those boobs won't last.

To start this week's episode, we're treated to what is supposed to be an inside look into Mark's mind, but turns out dumb and hysterical. One of the 20s (Amanda, surprise, surprise) and one of the 40s (Kelly, who has big boobs) are taken to a restaurant, where Mark has to go from table to table eating dinner with each. At the end, whomever he ends the hour with gets dessert as well.

Mark's pretty good at hopping from table to table, but in the last five minutes he's desperately trying to get back to Amanda to have "dessert" with her. If he picks her, Mark Philipooris deserves to have a trophy wife who will leave him in five years and take half his money, plus all of his favorite tennis rackets.

Anyway, Kellie talks and talks and talks, hoping to hold him until dessert. Meanwhile, Mark's desperately trying to get away, clearly not listening. Earlier we heard her lead an entire discussion of real estate, and while stretching her time at the end asks if she mentioned getting her license. He looks over and says "no," and is all but stepping on her feet to shut her up so he can excuse himself. He's a nicer guy than I am, actually.

As he walks Amanda back to her car, he gives her a smooch, his first of the show. Kellie gets dessert, but nothing more.

Did I mention that this show is mean? And a big fat liar. Amanda and Kellie were told that they'd be eating alone with Mark. Ha ha, they are eating alone with him, only they don't have him to themselves.

Next, the 40s and 20s are instructed to create dates for the other group with Mark Philicluelessis. Both figure accurately what the show wants them to do. The 40s send Mark and the 20s to a day care to play with kids, and the 20s send Mark and the 40s to a senior citizen water aerobics class.

Awesomely, this last one backfires because the 20s end up leaving Mark in a pool with a bunch of sexy women in bikinis crawling all over him!

Adelaide gets solo time with Mark and blows it with what they both say was a bad kiss that generated less chemistry than the moon's atmosphere. Maria of the 40s also gets alone time and thinks she's blown it when his body language looks more like he's hanging out with his gay friend who might be into him than a cute woman he's interested in snogging.

During the final segment where my favorites got kicked off, the 48-year-old Victoria Principal look-alike tells Mark that she's "starting to have feelings" for him. Warning! Warning! That's a tell-tale "Bachelor"-esque moment when the woman reveals her emotional breakdown!

Maria was all set to voluntarily go, having read "He's Just Not Into You" many times, apparently, until Mark Philiconfusedis tells her he likes her and wants her to stay. She changes her mind like a 20-year-old and decides to give him another shot.

The final eight will move in together next week, making it all the more delicious. It's a safe bet that the 20s will be portrayed as loud, sloppy and snippy, while the 40s will look sophisticated, calm and clean. Fun!

I don't care what happens, but Mary has to go. One of the 20s, she spent all of last week boo-hooing about how Mark will never pick her, and all of this week making fun of the 40s, as if she'll never be that old and have to endure menopause. We can only hope she doesn't reproduce. I can also tell you that she's not attractive, and compensates by all but completely showing her twins.

I love this show!


Wednesday, July 04, 2007

Let Freedom Ring

It's our nation's holiday, a day for red blooded god fearing Americans to blow stuff up, gorge themselves with meat, pull out the Lee Greenwood albums and take a day off of work. Just as it's written in the Declaration of Independence. (Somewhere after the bits about liberty and once you've figured out all the Ss look like Fs.)

Have a Happy 4th, everyone!

(You might want to put some Bactine on that. Remember, light the fuse, then walk away. Light, then walk away. If you're the type to light a bottle rocket from your crack, well, you're probably a lost cause anyway.)

UPDATE 11:49 p.m. - So what did y'all do for the holiday? Cookouts? Fireworks? Calming down freaked out pets? Watching the Mythbusters marathon on Discovery Channel?

All the Howells gathered at the grandparents' homestead, where a few are staying between the funeral and next week's family vacation at Chickasaw State Park. Val's Dad did the grilling, I stood around and cheered him in accordance with son-in-law tradition, and our fireworks were on the big screen by taking in the new Die Hard flick, which was suitably explodey, humorous and implausible. Second-best of the four, since the original can never be topped. Then I had to go in to direct the 9p show, as I'm in day five of nine in a row leading up to the vacation in which I still have to work three of the seven days, driving back and forth to Chickasaw. *mumbling under breath about being jerked around*

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

100 Things About Me, 101-110

1-10 | 11-20 | 21-30 | 31-40 | 41-50 | 51-60 | 61-70 | 71-80 | 81-90 | 91-100 | 111-120 | 121-130 | 131-140 | 141-150 | 151-160 | 141-150 | 161-170

(Why stop at 100?)

101. Despite 26 years of playing golf, much of it at a competitive level, I've never made a hole-in-one. I've come close many times, of course, but the closest was about an inch from the hole on a par three at what is now Big Creek golf club in Millington (then it was called Woodstock). I was playing alone after being dropped off by Dad to play all day, it was 7 a.m. and no one was around to confirm it if the ball had dropped in.

102. I was a big shot because I was chosen to be on the Safety Patrol wearing those cool neon vests in sixth grade at Scenic Hills Elementary.

103. Seriously, I was a stud in elementary school. Middle school was a lesson in awkward humility, though.

104. As a youth I would design golf courses on the church bulletin during the service, using the graphics and text as hazards. As a kid in the passenger seat, I would look at fields along the road and picture how a course would look there.

105. Whether I do it or someone else does, I just want a decision to be made, no matter how minor. Let's make it and move forward!

106. I LOVE banana pudding and milkshakes, yet HATE bananas as God created them.

107. I was terrible at science fair projects. Once, all I did was play batteries in a walkman to see which drained faster. Yep, that's solid scientific data right there.

108. I hate parking next to SUVs that block my sight line, making backing out a blind exercise in faith, and yet I don't think twice about parking next to cars that might hate my SUV for the same reason.

109. I always enter the shower from the front. That way I can duck under the spray until I get the right temperature. That is, when the shower head isn't a foot below my chin.

110. I prefer the Sammy Haggar years of Van Halen.

Trying to get back to normal this week

Val and I made it through last week, so why don't I try to get back on the blogging track with a few lame notes on some of my favorite punching bags:

  • An inconvenient truth for Al Gore and his global warming hysteria.

  • Hillary Clinton says that the White House needs a "clean sweep." I'm of two minds here. I could make a snippy comment about how when the Clintons left in 2001 all the sheets had to be replaced, or I could make a remark about how they grabbed everything but Bill's collection of Chubby Lover magazines on their way out the door.

  • A Michigan women is suing Mars Inc., claiming that biting into a Starburst locked her jaw and pulled it out of joint. Can't imagine the amount she'd be suing the makers of Jawbreakers. Or Boston Baked Beans, for that matter.

  • Proving that money doesn't buy class in the A-Fraud family, his wife (from now on F-Rod) wore a t-shirt that bore a two-word obscenity ending with "you" (and I don't mean "thank you") to a dang Yanks game this weekend at home. And with her two-year-old daughter in tow, no less.

    I'm guessing that after his tryst with the stripper made front-page headlines in May, she didn't get that $4 million ring like Kobe's wife got. Then again, at dang Yankee Stadium in the Bronx, I'm wondering if any of those fans even noticed.

  • On October 20, pit bull owners will hold a nationwide vigil to celebrate and promote pit bull ownership. That day will also be known in hospital circles as "That Godforsaken Day All Those People Came In With Dog Bites."