Wednesday, July 30, 2008

fuck da police

Monday night was the long anticipated arrival of The Police at Starlake. I think this concert was announced about 8 months ago so there would be sufficient time to cultivate a buzz. Trust me, they truly required the 240 day build-up. I zipped up with Heather and Jess and we met up with Justin/Jenn (celebrity name - Justezer or D-Rector, haven't decided) and Gary/Ashley (celebrity name Ashwell). We did some stealth tailgating and snagged a bunch of tickets - most for about 20 bucks which wasn't too bad. Face was $49 for lawn. Gary snagged two comp freebies from a radio station rep. The last time I saw that much exhiliration was when Dick Cheney shot his buddy in the face.
Let me preface my comments about The Police. I'm a huge fan. Always have been. This was one of the big shows I was looking forward to seeing all summer. I've seen Sting about ten times. He opened for the Dead during the summer of 1993 at all their stadium shows. So I saw him about 6 or 7 times and I saw him do a few solo shows, mostly of the Starlake variety. Anyway, about 10 years ago I was exiting the concert and having a discussion with a group near the car. I asked them if they enjoyed the concert and this one guy proclaims, "Sting is the patron saint of mediocrity." This line blew me away. Where did he come up with this? Turns out he was a writer for a local paper. I aksed him if he was going to use that phrase in his concert review and he replied negative. He liked the line but didn't think it would go over well with his readership. At the time, I was taken aback. I had thought it was a great concert and couldn't understand the negativity. Now, ten years later, I GET IT.
Let me first say, The Police sounded good (technically). You've got Stewart Copeland. One of the best drummers in the history of rock'n'roll. They're all respectable musicians and songwriters. But for the sake of Christ, they were totally uninspired. Totally just going through the motions. I suppose this could be inevitable since they all despise each other and were about 3 months into their tour. And their setlist was borderline abysmal. I honestly could have constructed a way better list. And Sting must be the most "humbly pompous" singer out there. The guy is beyond melodramatic. I can't stand the song Roxanne and I'm beginning to think he hates it too. I think he purposely drags out every syllable in a feeble attempt to mock and ridicule the crowd. It's just plain weird.
I'm sure everyone else who saw this show thought it was wonderful. They would be wrong. The "you've just been asked to exit the stage Price is Right music kicks in" - BUMP-BUMP-BAH-BOHM.
The highlight for me was leaving the parking lot. Flew right through the center, violently weaving through all the parked cars. When we finally needed to hit the main exit line, I got a perfectly timed assist from fellow limo driver Darryl in the White Top Lincoln. That made me feel a little better. Heather was kind enough to take shotgun and immediately passed out, so I had to strain my neck talking to Jess in the backseat for the 40 minute zip back home.
I think Public Enemy had it right all along - FUCK DA POLICE !

Tuesday, July 29, 2008


Saturday night was the concert I wanted to see all summer. The Foo Fighters were playing at University of Pittsburgh in Oakland at the Peterson Events Center. I'd never been there but knew it was a high-end, state of the art venue. I was supposed to go with Stollar, but she had to bail. I think she had to run her boyfriend a bath. No big deal. I asked Jess if she wanted to go. Couldn't get out of work early. Then I asked my favorite ex-neighbor Meredith. Couldn't get a hold of her. Then, I figured that I'm a big boy. I've been to Pittsburgh over 500 times. I'll just accept the harsh reality that I'm a LOSER and head up all by myself. I left around 5pm. Pittsburgh is a mess these days, with the North Shore closed and single lane traffic coming off the ramps of Oakland. I wanted to get up there early and perhaps do a little tailgating. I parked on the street and headed to The O. Snagged a corned beef sandwich and ate it en route back to the car. Snagged a lower level single ticket for $20 off some dude. I then ran into my favorite scalper - Tim. Hung out with him for a while. He wasn't making shit, so we just discussed the nature of the crowd, how there was no tailgating scene and how the venue is really sharp, but it seemed like people were gathering for a church service, not a rock concert. I sat on the steps and watched the procession outside the main entrance. Way too orderly. People were barely even speaking, let alone partying. I thought to myself - is this really a Foo Fighters concert or did I get the wrong night and it's Enya or Bjork or Michael Bolton or some other fuck?
I ran into some Shadyside guys who hang at the Tiger Pub. They praised my foosball skills even though I was the first one eliminated in the tournament earlier in the week. I had a good partner too. We just couldn't git'r'dun (Shady Hole Cracker Town style). Sometimes these things happen. I also saw Lou and I'm guessing his girlfriend's kids.
Anyway, I decided to skip the opening act Supergrass even though I like them. Instead, I decided to focus on my water bottle of cheap red wine. I went in at the break and went toward my seat. Just as I'm about to sit down I run into the indomitable couple of Kerri F and Mike Vis-Wis. I hadn't seen these two in a few years. We talked about old times and I showed them my 1992 drivers license. That's always a good way to get the party started. I resemble a dirtball convict with oversized shaded glases and some kind of ill-formed mullett. Then, I saw Kevin R. and his buddy behind me. So, even though my loserdom status was evident, at least I felt like I was amongst friends and part of the normal concertgoing crowd.
The week earlier, I had hosted a party and we listened to The Who tribute concert on VH1 featuring Foo Fighters, Pearl Jam, Incubus and a few others doing Who cover songs. The two songs that stood out were obviously from my two top bands. The Foo Fighters and the lead singer of Supergrass did a version of Bargain that I just couldn't get out my head for a week, Pearl Jam did The Real Me which also kicked varying degrees of ass.
I was very tempted to google the setlist from the Cleveland show the previous night. I had resisted temptation but was too curious to see if they'd play Bargain. Anyway, I succumbed and just like Jehovah or Ezekial or some religious freak once said, "Lo and behold, there it was." BARGAIN - the second song of three in the encore. Well, no skipping out early on this one. I figured I'd exit just before they closed the show with Generator. That's cool because I'm not a huge fan of that song.
Our seats were pretty good. Standard lower level, directly across from the main stage. As expected, Dave Grohl was in standard form. Screaming his lungs off at just about every opportunity. For those who've seen the band, they know what I'm talking about. "ALRIGHT, ARE YOU READY, HERE WE GO, RRRROOOOOAAARRRRR." If you've seen them, you get it. If you haven't; Well, just stick with your bubblegum Good Charlotte emo-pop shit because you suck and I find you loathsome. They had an acoustic stage set up right in front of us. They played a few tunes a little over halfway through the show on that stage. Marigold is a killer tune. Skin and Bones is not. And they played another poor one which the drummer sang. Grohl had an amusing anecdote where he spoke of his family and band members which were from the surrounding area outside the Burgh. He mentioned a cheap hotel in Breezewood where they'd go on family vacations. You know, the kind of hotel where you eat a large bucket of Kentucky Fried Chicken while the hookers venture in and out. Much funnier than my rendition.
As expected, the entire show ROCKED. I'm actually glad they played indoors. It had been a while since I'd seen a real rock band in an summer indoors arena style show. Pealr Jam at Mellon arena 2 years ago was probably it. They ripped into Bargain near the end. Definitely the highlight among about a dozen highlights. I bolted immediately and zipped out of Oakland in record time. Back in Wheeling to hit the Alpha and the Ho with a friend. My evening ended around 4am. There's a few hours in there that shall remain unblogged. Whew. What a night.
So here's the moral of the story. Even if you're a loser, try not to lose out.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008


Last night was very unusual. I'm hanging with my neighbors and then head up to watch the movie Superbad (which was hysterical). Around 11pm I get a call from our mutual friend Kimmie. She sounds as though she's hyperventilating. "A tree has fallen through Becky's house. It went right through the roof. There was a fire but we put it out. You gotta get down here. Bring some wine. Everyone's freaking out." At first I thought she was playing a practical joke since we had been discussing tree issues earlier that day. Then I realize it's not a joke. I'm thinking - oh no, not again. A tree from a sliver of my property fell on their place last summer. AEP was there the entire day cutting down a bunch of trees. I figured the matter had been resolved. No fuckin' way.
I zip down and park my car. Jake is showing me the damage which was pretty bad. The tree took out their entire grill and patio. Part of the same tree went through their upstairs bathroom as well. A hunk of tree went crashing through their roof. There's a sizeable hole in their bathrrom wall and debris everywhere. The only fortunate thing is that the tree came from my one neighbor's property (not the asshole, the reclusive woman below). That made me feel a little relieved. Jake and I start walking up the street to inspect the downed tree and the accompanying damage. 10 seconds later we start to hear this loud cracking noise. I yell, "Let's get the fuck outta here." Jake responds, "Oh, that's nothing. What are you worrying about?" I start running down the hill as the second half of the tree comes crashing down. It fell straight across the driveway nearly taking out the precious gate of the asshole neighbor. It crushes the power line and sparks start flying. The power to the entire street (as well as National Road) goes out instantly. Jake and I are freaking out and discussing how we both almost got crushed by the tree. This thing is huge. Honestly, it was a matter of ten seconds or we both would have been pummelled into the pavement.
All the neighbors are outside and we start discussing the irony of the situation. How the tree almost killed us. How it didn't hit asshole's gate. How both my and Jake's car almost were crushed and neither of us have personal coverage. How I used to park right where the tree came crashing down until a couple weeks ago when my asshole neighbor put up a split rail fence to shunt my regular parking endeavors. It made for some unusual conversation.
Anyway, we adjourn to the porch, or if you prefer, poach. Eventually, I head back up to my place throuuh the cemetary. For some reason, the cemetary gate is closed, as if there weren't enough strange gate issues for the night. I just had to crash out. Anyway, I woke up around 4:30am when the power came back on. Oddly enough, Superbad is back on tv. That's some funny shit.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

new odds on Hillary

Well, the odds on Hillary to win the Democratic nomination have now jumped to 49-1. Think about it. That's 20 bucks to win a GRAND. Of course, you have to reconcile the untimely death of Obama or his withdrawal from the race. I remember the Clinton campaign alluding to a nuclear option early in the campaign. They insinuated that they had some "dirt" on Obama but would never use it. Whether or not this is true is very debatable. They may have just wanted to try and scare some votes her way. But what if they do have some dirt - proof that Obama had a threesome, an extramarital affair, video of him kicking a midget in the balls... who knows, it could be anything. I could even envision the Clintons leaking it to the press (right after the Obama team pays off her campaign debt of course). That will be what I refer to as crunch time. Actually, just a little bit before the debt is retired so it doesn't arouse too much suspicion. Just take an objective look at the Clintons and think who we're really dealing with.
Anyway, the Democratic National Convention is August 25-28. So I'm thinking about placing the wager in about a week or so. I can't fathom the odds getting much better than 49-1. Incidentally, Al Gore is also 49-1. Just rememeber, if the whole bet was so ludicrous and unfathomable, there wouldn't be people out there currently betting on it.

Saturday, July 05, 2008

political wager

Every once in a while, I check out the political odds of various candidates on World Sports Exchange. Obviously, McCain and Obama are currently the respective nominees. I wouldn't waste time betting on either. The odds are basically 2:1 in favor of Obama. However, I thought it was intriguing that you can still bet on Hillary Clinton to win the Democratic nomination. The money line on Hildog is -3233. That means you wager $100 to win over $3233. You can also bet on Al Gore. His line is $100 to win $6500. All the other prior contenders are $100 to win $9,900 and there's zero interest out there (on people like Richardson, Biden, Dodd, etc). They offer the money lines by purchasing futures contracts which I've never done before. I've placed future bets but never bought contracts. In any event, it probably doesn't take rocket scientist. All you have to do is click the button.
Why am I yapping about this shit when Obama has already clinched the Democratic nomination? And why are there still a few stragglers out there betting on Hillary to win the Dem. nomination (not the presidency, just the nomination). Why? Why? Because for the past few months, I keep thinking Obama is going to end up dead. If he gets killed, who does the nomination suddenly fall to. Well, obviously it would go to Hillary. It's not as though the entire Democratic party would remain silent. They'd offer her up in less than an hour. Keep in mind, she doesn't have to win the presdiency, just the nomination.
For a brief moment, reflect on all the political assassinations (and attempted assassinations) in our recent history and around the world. More important, think about all the red states where Obama is going to concentrate his campaign. Confederate states like Georgia, North Carolina, Virginia, Arkansas, Louisiana, etc. These are states with lots of lingering racist undertones. States where Democratic candidates haven't made an active effort in since the 1960's. All it takes is one nutcase. This country has about 1 million legitimate nutcases and I would imagine most of them have guns.
Anyway, here's the reality. There are a few people out there buying futures contracts on Hillary. If Obama ends up dead, those Hillary contracts are going to be worth a shitload of money. And what about the outside possiblity of him just dying from a heart attack or other natural cause? And isn't he planning trips to Iraq, Israel and a few other middle Eastern countries in the near term? Not exactly places that will welcome him with open arms.
Isn't it risky to place a long shot bet on these gambling websites? What if they don't pay out? It's certainly a possibility but I have a reasonable amount of faith in world sports exchange. I've won a few long shots and the money was credited instantaneously. In any event, I trust this site and its often ranked #1 or #2 in the world. They're officialy licensed in England via Antigua. That's where many have their servers - Barbados, Costa Rica, Belize and other Caribbean countries.
So here's the deal. I think I might give this a shot. Now is probably the time. I doubt the odds will increase much further. They seem relatively stagnant at this point. The major point is that Hillary doesn't have to win the presidency, just the nomination. If you think I'm a crackhead, feel free to let me know. If you think I may have a legitimate idea and would consider participating, let me know asap. The sooner, the better. Or maybe I should say, the sooner, the bettor.
Incidentally, I still plan on voting for Obama and desparetely hope he is our next commander-in-chief. After 8 years of dumbshit and Cheney, this country could needs a hero. One final disclaimer - This whole wager is based solely on a long-shot conceptual gambling hunch with some basic Political Science 101 theory thrown in. Nothing more. I'm even thinking of changing my middle name to Hussein... Well, maybe not.

Tuesday, July 01, 2008


It's official. We're in a recession, no duh. High gas prices, slumping housing market, corporate layoffs, Dick Cheney's sagging ballsack, soaring health care costs, etc. But what's the solution?
John McCain inspired us all by offering a one time payout of 300 million dollars to anyone who can create the perfect battery fueled zero-emission automobile. He also offered up the "gas tax holiday" so everyone could save 15 cents a gallon for a month or so. Both these ideas suck for a myriad of reasons too numerous to expound upon.
Anyway, I was watching some AWA Wrestling from the mid 1980's a week ago and it gave me a stellar idea. Remember how they used to put "a bounty on the head of someone" - it was basically a cash payout for knocking someone unconscious or maybe drawing blood if the wrestler had a pretty face. I think the most notable bounties in wrestling history were placed upon Tommy "Wildfire" Rich and "The American Dream" Dusty Rhodes (but they were both WCW and that's largely irrelevant).

So here is my proposition...
I have decided to place a bounty of $100 on the popcorn machine at TJ's Sportsgarden & Restaraunt at 808 National Road, Wheeling, WV. You're probably asking, "what the fuck is he talking about? How do you beat up a popcorn machine at a low-end restaurant?" Here's how to collect - this bounty has a few specifics. All the steps must be acquired on video and youtubed.

Step 1 - Start getting drunk at the 19th Ho.
Step 2 - Stagger over to TJ's.
Step 3 - Walk in the entrance and throw up in their popcorn machine.

An extra $20 bonus payment can be acquired if, post-vomit, you give everyone in the restaurant the "suck it" sign. That means forming an "X" with your arms over the crotchal region while simultaneously yelling "suck it" or "let's get ready to suck it."

Note: The amount of puke must be semi-verifiable via the videotaped footage. I'm not demanding measuring cups but I'm not paying out if someone just goes over there and starts spitting/hacking in the popcorn machine.

So there you go. It's out there. Let's give this slumping Wheeling economy a kick in the ass. Remember the words of our outgoing mayor, "Think not what Wheeling can do for you. Think what you can do for Wheeling!"