Wednesday, September 30, 2009

He also predicts a 4-0 start for my fantasy football team

I guess this is what it takes to make Mariners baseball interesting.

Mariners broadcaster Mike Blowers was asked who he thought the player of the game would be in a game against the Blue Jays a few days back. He picked Matt Tuiasosopo, predicting he'd hit his first career homer in his second at bat, on a fastball, on a 3-1 count.

Turns out, Tuiasosopo hit a homer, in his second at bat, on a fastball, on a 3-1 count. Click over here to listen to the prediction and hilarious game call.


Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Berlusconi the burlesque

Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi is at it again.

Less than a year after he created a hubbub by calling President Barack Obama tan, he went back to the well this weekend. Back from the G20 summit in Pittsburgh, Berlusconi told Italians at a rally Sunday night:
I have to bring you some greetings, greetings from a man, what is his name, what is his name -- just a minute it was someone with a tan -- Barack Obama.
He also brought the First Lady into the gag, saying the Obamas "went together to the beach to get a tan because even his wife is suntanned."

So one of two things must be going on. Either Berlusconi is a racist who doesn't learn from his mistakes, or he's an idiot who doesn't realize Obama is black.

I kind of hope it's the latter, since calling someone "tan" is perhaps the greatest compliment Berlusconi can pay someone.

In any event, Berlusconi now has his own NaturalBlog tag, which is bragable.


Monday, September 28, 2009

I have become what I beheld

I have an important confession to make, and it involves a staple of the NaturalBlog: Sad Peyton, my occasional chronicling of the struggles of Colts quarterback Peyton Manning.

The trouble this season is that I'm rooting for Peyton. My change of heart is not altruistic, but completely selfish -- he's the quaterback of my fantasy football team, Bollinger's Bombers of the Ahmedinejad Flyers league.

What's a hater to do? I guess I'm hoping that he's involved in a lot of 42-38 losses this year. In the meantime, I'm well on my way to 3-0. Thanks, happy Peyton.


Thursday, September 24, 2009

He looks like he's wearing makeup

Libyan strongman Moammar Gadhafi got his star turn before the United Nations yesterday. Proving once again how tough an act Barack Obama is to follow, Gadhafi rambled from hand-scribbled notes for better than 90 minutes.

At least he looked good doing it. Where do you think he got that outfit? The Garment District? A coworker suggested the hat is the kind that comes with fake hair hanging out of it.


Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Effectiveness breached

I'm by no means Magellan here, but I need to say that my facebook circle has become unmanageable. Here's what I'm talking about:

Forty-six updates during an afternoon nap. That's just too many.

It makes me think of a concept I read about a few years ago called the "Dunbar number." It's the maximum size a group can be before it becomes ineffective. It's generally said to be about 150, which means I'd have to pare my friends by about half.

For whatever it's worth, I only have one facebook friend actually named Dunbar.

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Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Detractors call it "Klempson"

I want to share this video for two important reasons. First, it makes fun of Clemson, one of my least favorite colleges in the history of colleges. Second, it answers the question of what sportscasters talk about in commercial breaks.

The video begins with off-air banter making fun of a Clemson fan distraught by a loss. Halfway through is what actually aired. Watch is soon, before ESPN lawyers force it off YouTube.

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Monday, September 21, 2009

How many miles does a runner make?

Those are insoles, which I use to correct my flat feet. The top one is from 1992, when I was 14, around the time I tore my Achilles Tendon. The bottom one is new this year, and rather space-age in comparison.

I mention this because I ran a race Friday and Saturday (12 people, 207 miles) and am debating whether I'd call myself a runner yet. I guess by the strictest definition, I am, but it seems to me that being a runner is more a mindset than a measure of miles.


Thursday, September 17, 2009

Real or fake?

The LA Times reports that the woman pictured above, Arianne Prevost of Florida, shot and killed that 11-foot alligator she's posing with.

She used a cross-bow.

God bless Florida's public alligator hunts.


Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Unified theory of Dim Sum consumption

A long-time reader I once referred to as "Mr. X" put together this handy graphical representation of eating dim sum, which is like Chinese breakfast tapas.

As you can see, the target for consumption is $10 per person, though that's tough to aim for since no one knows what anything costs. The standard deviation is $1. If you eat $14 worth as I did some time ago, you are four standard deviations away, meaning you must skip four meals for your body to feel normal again.

FYI, five standard deviations may cause death.


Tuesday, September 15, 2009

America's Dirty Dancer dead at 57

I hope I'm not the one breaking the news to you (especially because I'm already joking about it), but actor Patrick Swayze is now a ghost. His death at 57 in Los Angeles came about a year after his diagnosis of pancreatic cancer.

Many will remember him as Dirty Dancing's Johnny Castle, "a sexy-yet-sensitive dance instructor from the wrong side of the tracks," as the LA Times puts it.

But me? I'll always remember him as this half-man, half-horse tattoo figure, on a field of rainbows.


Monday, September 14, 2009

Scenes from a dream

I left North Carolina 17 years ago this fall and haven't been back, so I used Google's "street view" to find Memory Lane.

I saw the old house and was reminded immediately of a dream. It was vague, hazy, half-formed, lurking just beyond my consciousness like a delicious moment of deja vu.

The tantalyzing memory jogged from slumber by this picture almost makes up for my many misgivings about how powerful Google has become. Almost.


Friday, September 11, 2009

Live or Memorex?

Thanks to my sister for pointing this one out.

One of these magazine covers is real. The other is fake. Try and figure out which is which.


Thursday, September 10, 2009

Just how liberal is liberal

I'm sure you know I'm a member of the liberal media (though not the liberal media "elite," I'm proud to point out), but you may wonder just how liberal I am. Well here's your answer.

I'm so liberal that I favor mandatory government-funded abortion. I also favor mandatory gay marriage for all Americans. The good news is that with everyone required to have a gay marriage, that should cut down on the number of mandatory abortions.

And so ends this political foray.


Wednesday, September 09, 2009

FOUND: Rod Blagojevich

This may or may not be disgraced former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich, Superstar.

Well, to be honest, it really doesn't look much like him, except for the hat.

I snapped the picture at lunch this week in the Back Bay. That's Mrs. N-B's ear there on the right.

This post is really a vehicle to admit that occasions when I supply my own photo are no longer rare, so I am changing the tag to reflect that.


Tuesday, September 08, 2009

How I spent my summer vacation

A lot of people use the summertime to accomplish a project, maybe something around the house or reading a huge tome. I spent my summer on something far more important: Growing out my sideburns.

I think I've done pretty well. Take a look at this photo I snapped this morning.

Just kidding. I'd never grow a mustache.

Joking aside, the 'burns have generally met with positive reviews, so they get to stay for the fall.


Monday, September 07, 2009

Autumn blues

Now that I've fully enjoyed New England's five weeks of summer, I can start to look forward to the spoils of fall. And with each fall comes a wild card for the Red Sox, fantasy football, and my favorite brew of the year Sam Adams Octoberfest.

It's been available for about two weeks in Boston (and I even spotted it in late August in Reno, Nev., of all places). I've been able to enjoy it a couple times now -- twice out and once yesterday at a Labor Day weekend barbecue.

Oddly, Sam October might be the only beer I find superior in a bottle, as opposed to draught. Draft Octoberfest has an oily feel and an overpowering nose, but in the bottle it's just right.


Friday, September 04, 2009

He'd do anything for a vote

So what if the lines on this weekend's games approach the triple digits. I'm just happy to have Saturday football back tomorrow. To get in the spirit, let's celebrate like the newly senior U.S. Senator from Massachusetts John Kerry.


Thursday, September 03, 2009

Has it come to this already?

You may have heard that U.S. Senator Edward Kennedy of Massachusetts died last week. But you may not have heard that former Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling is interested in replacing him.

Though it probably won't go anywhere, Schilling wrote on his blog (copycat!) that he has "some interest" in the seat. I guess it's not that surprising, considering his campaign work for both George W. Bush in 2004 and John McCain last year.

But I can't help but wonder what's next? Is Ben Affleck going to run?


Wednesday, September 02, 2009

Down with stinky people

Sweaters, beware.

Gordon Y.K. Pang of the Honolulu Advertiser reports a proposal before city councilors would ban stinky people from buses, in the hopes of eradicating the plague of the malodorous before Honolulu builds its new rail line.

The measure would prohibit bringing "onto transit property odors that unreasonably disturb others or interfere with their use of the transit system, whether such odors arise from one's person, clothes, articles, accompanying animal or any other source."

So far so good. What else?

"Some people, quite frankly, do not take a bath every day and therefore they may be offensive in terms of their odor," said a co-sponsor.

I'm on board. What's the catch?

Well, the bill would also prohibit being intoxicated on the bus. Isn't that kind of the point of public transportation?


Tuesday, September 01, 2009

May this dream not come true

I dreamt the other night that Rue McClanahan, formerly the slutty Blanche Devereaux on the hit series The Golden Girls, had died. It would almost be too great a cross to bear, after losing a Petrillo and a Zbornak so recently. Betty White, who played Rose Nylund, is of course an automaton that will never die, so we're in the clear with her.