Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Mama, There Goes That Man

I will be the first one to tell you that this particular post doesn't have much in the way of substance. I just have a couple quick notes and the sharing of one of the funniest things I'd ever heard on television. You've been warned.

I'm going to see Bon Iver with my sister in the city in August. In the more immediate future, I'm going to Maryland to see Phish and spending the following day with Nick Pappas himself in what I can only assume to be the greatest city of all time, Baltimore. I'm super thrilled about the trip. Also, Sufjan Stevens is playing in Brooklyn in August and the ticket prices are not quite as high as I would expect for an artist of his caliber. If a few friends are interested, I'd love to catch his show as well and consider my graduation money well spent. Dave's year off from touring is really bearing fruits in the sense that it frees me up to see some other artists. Regarding the 4 Dave shows, I would drop all I was doing to go see them in Atlantic City, but arrangements will be too expensive. The NY show is a bit more feasible, but still really expensive and the set pales in comparison to the NJ ditty. At the risk of losing my lifelong DMB fan membership, I don't think a year off is anything worth crying about. In more local news, Hot Tuna will be playing a show about 30 minutes away from my house this summer and the tickets are 20-30 bucks. A small price to pay to see Jefferson Airplane alums. This promises to be a musical summer indeed.

I had promised not to make this blog about basketball, mostly to give myself some solace from it, but I can't help it at this point; I'll be brief.

My Mavericks continue to silence all critics and appear to be Finals bound after one of the most impressive comeback victories I've ever seen last night. The team appears to be running on all cylinders and Dirk is a man on a mission. I'm enjoying just being a fan for once. I don't mean to say that I'm professional or anything, and I don't mean to sound cocky, but usually when I watch an NBA game, while it's a good time, I always approach it relatively impartially and with an analytical mind. For the first time since about middle school I feel like just a fan sitting on the couch with some buds and some snacks, having a good time and cheering right along with the fans. This playoff run has been liberating for the Dallas franchise and it also reminds me that basketball is just a game. A great game, but a game. This run has reminded me why I fell in love with the game in the first place. The experience has been invaluable.

The subject of last night's game brings me to one of the funniest things I've heard in a while. Former NBA-great, Mark Jackson does commentary for the ESPN games and usually has no shortage of quotable lines that are either pretty laughable, or just plain dumb. As a matter of fact, I say this: Mark Jackson's best/worst quotes (depending on how you look at them) are better than Charles Barkley's. Barkley is more consistently quotable, but I'd take Jackson's top ten over Barkley's any day.

Anyway, last night Dirk was in the zone. At one point Dirk hit a near impossible shot over Thabo Sefloshia (too lazy to check the spelling, close enough), one of the premier defenders in the league. Mark Jackson, struck by whatever creative muse he ascribes to, saw fit to imitate Dirk speaking to Thabo after the play. He said the following:

(As Dirk): "Guess where I was last night while you were eating dinner. I was in the gym getting work done."

While the limitations of text prevent me from capturing Mark Jackson's tone of strained bad-assery, this quote tickled me to no end for the following reasons:

1. It makes Thabo seem like an apathetic monster for wanting to eat a meal.
2. It's not like Dirk Nowitzki skipped dinner yesterday.
3. Dirk naps every game day.

Can't a guy eat a meal without being ridiculed on national television? I admit that in type the retelling isn't entirely a knee slapper, but the ridiculousness of the statement coupled with the positive vibes of such a huge win shook me to the core. I thought it was absurdly funny. We can only hope that Thabo stops eating entirely so that he can be better prepared to take on the Mavs on Wednesday.

Mark Jackson, I tip my hat to you.

Song of the Day: "I Was Born In Puerto Rico"- Paul Simon
Jazz Song of the Day: "I Love You"- Freddie Hubbard

Thursday, May 19, 2011

"Wanna Stay But I Think I'm Gettin' Outta Here"

It has been a while since I've done this. As a result, it's tough to summarize your last month or so of college without writing a very egocentric novel, which I won't do for both of our sakes. To put it mildly, it was a very special time of my life where I worked hard and had a great time with my friends.

Now that I'm done, I'm a little nonplussed, to be honest. It's interesting to work for four years at both academics and extra-circulars and suddenly have them not mean too much. Obviously, the real value of college is the experience itself, both academic and otherwise. Nonetheless it's a little surreal to see four years of the best time of your life reduced to a single line on your resume while you move on to "real life." I don't mean that depressingly, but you have to admit, it's kind of a strange thought and even stranger feeling. I'll miss York, obviously. Rhapsody, radio, classes, lifting weights all day and all night, but mostly the great people I've met along the way.

Even that is a little different than I thought it would be. Being from Long Island, visiting friends around PA, NJ, and NY is not out of the question and will hopefully happen sooner rather than later. With that said, I always thought it would be my best friends from school that I'd miss. That's not really the case. I mean, I'll miss my best friends for sure, but at the same time, I know that my lifelong friends are always a phone call away and I don't need to see them everyday to consider them the family that I view them as. The people I find myself missing are the people in between. The people you really enjoyed being around, but didn't necessarily chill with everyday. To save them a conservative blush, I won't mention names, but I don't miss my best friends, I miss the people I know could have been if I had more time with them. With that said, I'll visit York next semester before I know it and I'm fortunate enough to have great friends here on Long Island. I feel pretty good about the whole situation.

In other, less self indulgent, news, I've picked up a Twitter account. I don't consider myself all that much worth following, but I do like to toss up the occasional joke or observation about once a week. I picked it up, because after writing my senior thesis, I realized that a Twitter was pretty handy in the sports writing world. Some people say that Twitter is contributing to the downfall of the English language. I'm not so sure that I agree. While I doubt it helps the conservation of language at all, I don't think it decays the language any more than email or texting does already. With that said, I think it says a lot about our culture that we feel compelled to share our likely less than compelling thoughts with a less than interested worldwide audience.

Is that hypocritical from a guy with a blog?

I don't think so, because a blog at least provides a palette for thought and exploration. It's a little more than saying, "going to the gym, the Beatles are awesome, or hot dogs." Not everyone is that fickle with their Twitters, nor is everyone that thoughtful with their blogs, but at least in my mind, there's a very small, but very important difference.

While Twitter is not destroying the language of a nation, it is destroying my own. One of the cool things about Twitter is that allows for the closest to interaction with celebrities than most will ever get. I've boldly ventured to send messages to Flea and Stephan Lessard (Apparently, I only converse with bassists.) and felt pretty silly as a result. Twitter makes it so that you only have 450 characters in a "tweet" (an amount which this blog post surpassed long ago). In the interest of brevity, I cut down what I wish to say, cutting unneeded words. However, in my fit of concision, I always seen to cut an important conjunction or suffix that is essential to what I'm saying. My point is, I doubt Stephan even understood what I said, and I doubt Flea thinks I can read past a fifth grade level. This is a whole new style of writing that I'm learning day by day. Right now, I'm taking my lumps, I guess.

See later, have fun in summer day with rain. (An example of my progressive regression.)

Song of the Day: "Show Me"- John Legend
Jazz Song of the Day: "Honeysuckle Rose" T. Monk