Friday, October 13, 2006

"3-0": A Yankee Universal Nightmare

Good job by Chan buying Cheez-Its, then realizing he only likes Cheese Nips, leaving me the entire box of 'Its.

Terrible job by the A's, going down 3-0. But that's great for us. Now everybody gets to hear about the '04 Red Sox. The longer the A's stay alive, the more we all get about the historic comeback. And even if the A's do win four in a row, they'll have done it with the last two games at home. I think we'd win the tie-breaker in that case. That's the beauty part--no, one of one hundred billion beauty parts--of 2004: no one can ever have a greater comeback. It's a mark that can only be equalled, never surpassed. (Until they reinstate the 9-game series.)

So, for now, go A's. Make Yankee fans remember '04, as it's yet to fully sink into their heads.

But I'm glad the Tigers are winning. Not giddy, just kinda, I don't know, a little happy. The key for me is that there's no pressure in these series. When the Yanks are alive, it's really unhealthy for me, let alone when the Sox are still in it. It's nice to have an October where nothing that happens in baseball can make me tear my limbs off. (You "tear my hair out" people are weak...)

Thanks, Mid-'00s

For "hot," "no worries," and "what??"

Really creative.

Can't Get Enough Of This Picture

Thursday, October 12, 2006

The D

Check out the cast for the new Tenacious D movie. A lot of good people.

Robbins, Stiller, Armisen, Poehler, Dio (yes, that Dio), David Koechner...

When I saw Snakes on a Plane, I was glad to see Koechner get a nice applause when he apperaed on screen. He's now recognized as that wacky sports reporter from Anchorman. He deserves it, after his time on SNL. I remember the first episode with the "new" cast, in '95, which included Wil Ferrell, Cheri Oteri, Darrell Hammond, Molly Shannon, and the rest of that crowd. Koechner was the "other" dad in the "get off the shed" sketch, which was, I believe the first sketch of that season after the monologue. Koechner and Nancy Walls got the boot after that one season, so I'm glad he's now a famous dude.

Neil Hamburger is also in the movie. And he's opening for Tenacious D on their upcoming tour. I was surprised they actually decided to play out again for this. Maybe I shouldn't have been. They play the Garden, with Hamburger(!), on December 1st. Email me for the presale code if you can't find it. I'm talking MSG, not the Derek Jeter Fleet Center or whatever.

When Tenacious D was playing in the 90s, I didn't like them, but only because of this dude I knew. He had perfect skin, perfect hair, and shiny new clothes. He'd been a DJ on the local college station, so he "knew more than you." He was all unassuming and soft-spoken, but you could tell he'd steal your girlfriend with his cuteness and phony-ass charm in a second, and then act like it was your fault for not being "indie" enough. Uh... anyway, I heard that dude say the words "Tenacious D" one day, and I made the decision I wasn't going to like them, whatever the hell they were. Turns out I missed out on a lot.

The lesson here: F that guy!

Day After

Pics I just took (click to enlarge):

Still a huge mess down the block from me, what with all the satellite trucks and reporters and tents set up. I just walked down there on my lunch break. Several random people were being interviewed on the street.

The site of a building like that reminded me of what I felt on 9/11/01, while the twin towers were burning. I thought of how ugly and scary those buildings would be once the fires were out, with gaping, black holes in them. That turned out not to be an issue.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

More Questions Than Answers

As I sit here listening to Steve Lyons' hideous Richard Dreyfuss-like laugh over and over and over again, I continue to think of this plane crash, and how it might have happened. (By the way, Fox talked about Lidle on the pre-game, including Kooky's thoughts on it, but it's almost like they made some kind of official decision to ignore the death of a current major league player from the moment the game telecast started. What if it had been a close friend of Piniella or Lyons or something? Do you think they would've not been allowed to comment on it?) As I write this, Chris Myers finally mentions it--and his speech is interrupted by a home run.

The plane was flying up the east side of the island of Manhattan, along the river. To the left, a million tall buildings. To the right, a whole lotta Queens: miles of space, with not many structures taller than a few stories. I heard that up around 72nd St, where the crash happened, you get close to Laguardia Airport's airspace. Since LaGuardia is off to the east, that probably means everywhere to the north and east of where the plane was when it turned into the building is off limits to non-commercial crafts. So it could make sense that if they were turning around, they'd turn left to do so. Maybe too steep a bank, and they lost control and hit the high-rise. But why would they be that low? Why not fly well above the top floor of any building, for safety's sake?

There was also apparently another plane right nearby. And BSM just commented that Lidle reported problems with the plane right from takeoff. I still wonder why, no matter what the problem was at the time, a pilot would turn toward Manhattan for any reason. I guess we'll find out.

These are all things I'd be wondering about, even if there hadn't been anybody famous, let alone a Yankee, on board. Remember, this happened in my neighborhood.

Crazy Day In New York

I am really wondering about this crash. He was an excellent pilot, flying in a plane equipped with a parachute. The weather was totally fine. (It started raining an hour later, clouds were at 18,000 feet.) He was flying up the East Side of Manhattan, and turned west. It makes no sense. The must've been a serious problem with the plane or something. And you have to have serious psychological problems to try to kill yourself--it takes more than a bad playoff game. Of course I'm thinking about his demeanor on the radio the other day. I listened to him talk for fifteen minutes. He definitely seemed pissed. Pissed enough to purposely crash into a building? I don't know. But I didn't know the guy. People say he loved to fly, so I'm sure it was just an accident.

And the Munson comparison, well, I don't see a similarity beyond "baseball player in plane crash." Munson was the captain and heart of the Yankees. Lidle happen to play his last few months with them. Both tragic plane crashes, that's where the similarities end.

It was weird hearing people at work saying "plane hit building." They said 72nd Street. I thought, Wow, right near us. But I didn't know until I called my mom--to tell her I was okay, since surely she'd hear about a plane crash on the Upper East Side and worry--that it was right down the avenue I was on.

I grabbed the "work" camera and took some photos, amongst others doing the same thing. Then I went over to the river. The photos are below if you scroll down. I got down as far as 75th Street (on that walkway in my picture from a few days ago, between the East River and FDR Drive) before a police officer told everyone to turn back.

Great job by my co-worker, who volunteers for the Red Cross, to call them and see if she could help. When I got back to the office, she was on her way out to get her gear.

Then I took a long walk home, as the rain fell. I was drenched by the time I got to the post office to pick up my Gedman-worn Cardinals jersey. I got home, peeled off my dripping clothes, and played my messages. My mom said something about Cory Lidle. Huh? And now it's pretty much confirmed. What a crazy day. Lots of talk about whether they'll play the Mets game tonight. From a weather perspective, it doesn't seem like they could play anyway.

Oh, and it's also weird that some Yankee players live right near where the crash happened. I really hope he wasn't trying to fly by a teammate's building or something like that. We should all hope this was just an accident that couldn't be avoided.

More Plane Stuff--Lidle Probably Killed

This is just surreal. I'm watching Mike & the Mad Dog right now. Two days ago, I listened to these two interview Cory Lidle. Mad Dog was legitimately pissed that Lidle was out "enjoying life" a day after they Yanks were knocked out. And today, that same Cory Lidle, from the info we're getting, flew a plane into a building a few hundred feet from where I sat at work. The past few days, I'd been going over to the river (five blocks north of the accident) a few times a day, since there's a problem with our heat at work--it's sweltering in there. I easily could've seen this plane hit the skyline.

This is just crazy. Bloomberg right now is saying they were sightseeing, and had gone around the Statue of Liberty. They came up the East Side and crashed. Two people were on board. Supposedly Lidle was one, a flight instructor was the other.

At my job, we also deal with a lot of senior citizens, many of whom live in that area. Thankfully, no one in the building was killed.

But this is horrible for those two people and their families. Bloomberg is not saying Lidle's name. But it apparently was his plane, and others said he took off earlier in the day from Teterboro.

Plane Crash

This shot above was the first I took, at some point near 3:30. The crash was around 2:40. You can see the big black mark on the red brick high-rise. The smoke is barely visible. It went straight to the right, you can see it to the right of the building with the clock on it.

In the above two shots, you can barely see the red building between two others. But you can see the black spot on it.
Looking down 1st. And below, looking down York. From 5 blocks north. You can kind of see the million rescue vehicles.

This Half-Decade's 9-11

Breaking news: Plane hits building in NYC.

Every once in a while, you're sitting at work, and a plane hits a building seven blocks down from you.

I just went down and took some pics. They'll be coming in a few minutes. Hopefully everybody got out of there. Apparently it was a small plane.

Party On No Stripe

My friend Brian, a few years ago, pointed out that most A's players look the same. And it has to do with their uniforms. So much white, so tight. Every year, the A's are these long-legged, stick figure ghosts.

I also realized they don't have a stripe down their pantlegs. I'm at work, so I haven't fully researched this, but a quick check of Google Images tells me that most teams have the stripe. Obviously, all the fully pinstriped teams have it. But only a select few--the Cardinals, Dodgers, A's, and (sometimes) (?) Rangers--don't. I vote for the A's to add a stripe. I think they'd look less like Aryan Ninja Mummies that way.

I've also realized that the Dressed to the Nines site doesn't show the side of the pants. A huge mistake on an otherwise awesome site.

It's A Living

Ed Benedict has died.

For The Flintstones, the story of a "modern Stone Age family," Benedict not only designed the hapless cavemen Fred and Barney, but also their long-suffering wives, Wilma and Betty, and the show's clever array of Stone Age houses and gadgets, including the characters' foot-powered cars.

In other words, this guy was a legend. I'm ashamed for not knowing his name until now. Think about how much the Flintstones come up in conversation. I compared an old lady's sit-down walker to a "Flintstones car" just last week.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006


This isn't the funniest thing in the world. But it's about the Yanks losing, so check it out. I taped it last night.

Torre will be staying. I said last night, in real life, that there was really nothing behind the rumors. And it turns out I was right. Woulda been funny if B.S. had fired him, though. As you know, I always root for monkey knife fights in the Bronx Zoo, so to speak.

Whoever wins this year will win for the first time since...the 80s. Mets-Tigers would be cool, since it's never happened before.

Monday, October 09, 2006


Sunday was a 70-degree, cloudless day in NYC. Chan and I walked til we could walk no more. We started over at the East River. The kayakers were out. Click 2 enlarge.

Left: East River. Right: FDR Drive. Far left: The Circle Line, which is the tourist boat that goes all the way around the island of Manhattan. Did it when I was, like, five. Should do it now--I'd know what I was looking at.

We ate at an outdoor table at Lenny's. I watched for dejected Dunbar fans, and enjoyed the perfect weather.

As we moved on, Chan noticed he was green. There was a weird awning above him. I made him pose for a picture. This old lady walked by, and Chan said, "you wanna be in the picture?" This is him turning back to ask her. She was scared and was running away from this Asian Hulk, when she realized, This guy's green, sure, but I can handle it, I'm from New York, and paused to look at what was causing him to be green, and then making herself turn green herself. It was hilarious. "Chan ang-greeee!" (He wanted me to "digitize" his face. I did it my own special way.)

We continued down the East Side to the UN. Right next to the UN is a huge, beautiful park--that's closed. So I took this picture through a fence. One thing about living in New York I never could stomach...all the damn elephants.

Shot of the Chrysler Building in between two others. The buildings in the foreground are right across the street from the UN.

Right near the UN is Tudor City, where rich folk live. The landscape is very cool. The area is up above First Avenue and 42nd Street, and has a couple of little parks. This park is so quiet and beautiful. You'd never know it lives right by a whole lot of hub and bub.

The UN, from Tudor City, named after former Red Sox pitcher John Tudor.

These dudes from Burma were protesting and chanting and fasting across the street from the UN. They were drinking during their fast. Chan said this was allowed, whereas I felt only gum should be allowed in the mouth. Sorry the top and bottom of the building don't really match up.

I'd been meaning to get a shot of this building--just south of the UN--for a while. It's been like this for months. And it's not like it's in some hidden location. Everyone coming down the FDR sees this mess. (Which is fine with me, because it looks awesome.)

A quote on a building across from the UN, by former NBA great, Isaiah Thomas.

Looking west toward Grand Central Station on 42nd Street from Tudor City.

I wanted to go to the store that sells a certain kind of vegan marshmallows (there's monkey bones in marshmallows, you know). It was downtown and on the West Side. So we started to walk along 42nd, and go all the way to Times Square, and catch the subway there. Chan also wanted to see some French lawn-bowling thing in Bryant Park, which is why we didn't just catch a train from Grand Central. But we saw some other stuff along the way:

The Daily Planet! Actually the Daily News building, but you may recognize this from Superman.

Here's the globe from inside the lobby.

There are a bunch of these little fact things down below the globe.

As we kept walking on 42nd, I looked up and saw this. It freaked me out for a second. "Chan, look at that." "Yeah," he said, as if he'd been looking at it for the last five minutes without saying anything, "they're filming up there."

As with any day in New York, someone was shooting a movie. Chan even said, "you know, I'm getting sick of these." (I never will.)

As everyone else watched from below, I remembered the secret way up to that elevated roadway, up the escalator of the Hyatt. I dragged Chan up there. Only three other people were looking on. A man was pointing. I asked, "Who do we have here?"

He told me. I couldn't tell. He said, "he's sitting under the tent." I still couldn't tell it was him. The guy said, "trust me, look at the ears, the mannersims, you can tell." He's in blue, right in the middle of this shot.

Okay, here he is, just below and to the right of the eagle, with lights illuminating the side of his face. That's right, it's suburb-friendly rapper turned action hero, Will "The Fresh Prince" "Of Bel-Air" Smith.

Here he his again, in the same spot. You really can tell by the ears. And, funnily enough, he's right next to a huge ear.

The movie will be called I Am Legend, and involves the Prince as the last living dude, ready to fight vampires. Or something.

Here, the blue forklift brings the cab off its perch.

Channel 2 news anchor Roz Abrams was there! Her son was allowed to run amok around the filming area. I'm guessing she'll be playing a reporter in the film.

So these must be vampire dogs. Note the bleeding anus on the one on the left.

And I guess this dog will become one of those dogs. These people were making the dog attack this little thing they'd toss. This dog could kill you, my friend.

We got out of there, saw no French bowling at Bryant Park, took the train down the West Side, got to the store, and found out they stopped selling the marshmallows. Oh well. At that point we walked through the West Village, down to SoHo, all the way over and then back up the Bowery. I even got to go into the junk shop with all the huge old signs and other really big and weird stuff for sale. We went up to St. Marks, only to find that video game store, the one that sells old Atari and Nintendo games and video game marquees and Pac-Man cards had moved two blocks down. They actually had a stand-up Mr. Do! My lifelong dream is to have a stand-up Mr.Do! The sounds of that game bring back great memories for me. It was like Dig Dug taken to the next level. But it cost 900 bucks.

Then we ate Indian food on the same street, 6th Street, where all the Indian food places live, and the Indian dudes try to sell you on their specials as you walk by. The place we chose was pretty un-good, save for the appetizers.

We'd earlier passed CBGB's. They'll be closing next week (was the the top story on today,for some reason), but there were kids outside, waiting for one of the final shows. I wanted to get a shot of the "Satan Don't Walk" sign across the street. Here it is from afar, with doing that "blurry walk" thing.

And even in the close-up, you can only tell the hand is in "hook 'em horns" position a little bit. I'll have to go back and get a shot in the daylight. But I think these blurred and dark pictures capture the CBGB's vibe perfectly.

Then we walked by Fred Armisen, wearing headphones. Then our legs stopped working. We were both limping from the walking. We took the 6 home.

Haunchplank Redemption

My laptop battery died a month or two ago. Fortunately, there was a recall of batteries just when I happened to need a new one. Today, the new battery arrived. After all this time having to be near an outlet, thus rendering my laptop a desktop, or, in my case, a floortop, I'm free again. But I've become so used to my little spot here on the floor, I've already noticed myself settling back into it. Didn't Morgan Freeman win an Oscar for something like this?

Near Mint Irony

Our parents grew up to find out all the baseball cards their parents threw away were worth a fortune. We grew up to find out all the cards we collected are worthless.

It goes to show you, you're better off buying something because you like it, not because you think it might be worth some money one day. The value of a fond memory is far greater than that of any currency.

But another irony is: Many things I saved when I was twelve because I thought they might be worth something someday are still worth nothing--but my having held onto them this long gives them sentimental value.


Did you see Kenny Rogers pouring the champagne on the cop? With that maniacal look in his eyes? I taped it for you:

Cory Lidle was just on Mike & the Mad Dog. He called in to defend Torre. They proceded to read him his own quotes, in which he claimed the Tigers were more ready than the Yanks. He claimed he was misquoted, before explaining himself by saying the same thing as tthe quote. Then he said he's just trying to enjoy his day. Mad Dog was highly offended by this. It was really funny and awkward.

Friends Of Jason Giambi

From friend Jason, another Onion-ish article about the Yanks. This one will crack you up.

And click on Jason's link to read about his current adventures in Argentina. He'll be there for two more months, so feel free to follow along. You may learn a thing or two about the non-"what will happen with A-Rod now?" world.

Sunday, October 08, 2006

This Will Be Explained Tomorrow

Tearing Up

You know a team's in bad shape when all the articles written about them seem like Onion articles.

One headline is "A-Rod: 'I Sucked'." Then there's this article, which seems like something I would've written, in attempt to make fun of Yankee fans. It's very brief, but does a great job of summing it all up: A half-empty bar for a Yankee playoff game; a Yankee fan turning to the Mets, starved for anything resembling a team that can get it done; a merchant forced to throw all the Yankee gear onto the clearance rack. This is Yankees Universe.

So, as we move on toward the Subway Series...oh, that's right, there isn't going to be one. What American invisible force could've drilled into our heads that it was imminent? Oh yeah, the same media that gave us this article, with the Sox down 2-0 to the Yanks. (I wonder what this person was thinking after Game 3!) I don't know who wrote it, except that it was from the Daily News. It's copied and pasted, because I couldn't find it in their archives.

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