31 March 2008

Art Geek Does Sports, Nation Applauds

I'm sitting in the stands, because who the hell stands if there are seats free right in front of them, thinking to myself: "a period is 20 minutes long? Wait, how many are there? Is hockey the one with three innings-sections-parts to it? Yeah, its gotta be.... Should I get a hot dog or an Italian beef?... Why do I know the name Tony Esposito?...Yeah I'll get the Italian beef."

It isn't that I hate hockey or don't like sports necessarily. I'm from Texas so hockey didn't come up as often in conversation as that golden calf we call "football." High school, college, professional, whatever level it was, if it was football, it was discussed. But not by me. I didn't play, didn't want to play, and didn't really care. I asked loudly "who's Tom Landry?" while in a grocery store, and I think about half the men there wanted to kick my ass on principle. I just went a different path in my interests is all. While my peers built up rosters and stats in their memories I pursued the subjects that interested me the most: academics, drawing, self love, reading and playing video games for example.

As I grew up I came to associate sports participants and fans with the moronic sacks of flesh that paraded around the halls of school to the confounding (to me anyways) adoration of the less imaginative. I just didn't get it. Until I moved to Chicago.

Something about this city is just infectious when it comes to sports. My first year here the Sox had their parade for winning the world series. I lived near Wrigley and witnessed the congestion caused by the mobs of blue clad fans. Memories of Michael Jordan commercials resurfaced to my mind. This is just a sports town. Despite my efforts to fight it, I was drawn in. I'll never remember the stats or the the full rosters but I recognize names. I actually knew most of the sports teams when the Hot Wheels (a die hard sports nut) quizzed me by city. I think I'm getting it. There is some kind of pride found in your team making it, some concerned support when they don't, and just the camaraderie of those who agree with you is surprisingly nice.

I've gone to baseball games, more every year. But I'd never, NEVER, been to a hockey game, and I took the chance to finally go to one. It was damn fun. I don't exactly understand why Tony Esposito was there since they retired his jersey in the early 80s, but I chanted with the rest. I may not have been as enthusiastic with the high fives and the ass patting going on around me (no means no Asshole), but any chance to make fun of funny sounding names and boo strangers from a safe distance (no throat slicing for me please) shouldn't be passed up.

CUBS!! Check. Sox. Check. Blackhawks. Check.

Next up: Bulls and Bears with maybe a smack of Fire added.


20 March 2008

Cheap Seats

Last night, The GringO, the World's Biggest Asshole and I went to watch the 'Hawks destroy the Caps 5-0. It was a special night for me, since it was Tony Esposito night, and anyone who knows me knows that I am a goalie at heart; Tony-O, in particular, has a very special place in my life. I got to see him play only once; I was eight and he shut out the Flyers (at the time, my dad's second most-hated team). That game made want to be a goalie so bad. Forget Savvie's two goals and two assists, or Behn Wilson's epic pummeling of Dave Brown; I walked out of there inspired by 28 shots attempted and 28 saves made.

We sat in the cheap seats: SRO all the way! We had a great time; excellent view of the ice, and got to hang out with Berserker Bill, kicker of throats and crusher of uvulae, and the Trouble brothers, Sean and Dave, who TWBA hit in the nuts with his folding chair during the first five minutes of the game. I guess nobody puts baby in the corner...

Cheaps are great. You pay ten bucks and you hang out with great fans who know the game and the team as well as you do; you drink beer and you scream as loud as you can; you hurl obscenities at the opposing team because, in the cheaps, that is what you do. My favorites:

  • "Ovechkin is a poor man's Pavel Bure!"- So spoke Dave and his sore testes.
  • "Ovechkin is Russian for 'foreskin!'" - I'm quite proud of that one!
  • "I don't care what happens on the ice, so long as someone KICKS HIM IN THE THROAT!" - Bill makes his mom proud with that one.
A truly fantastic evening. You should go; we could make asses of ourselves and just ride the wave of drunken, belligerent bliss that is an SRO hockey experience!


12 March 2008

Working in some wrinkles

Thanks to Viagra and Cialis, old folks homes are becoming hotbeds of iniquity. Right now, someone's grandma and grandpa are hoping the kids will just get the hell out of their rooms so that they can get to some righteous boning.

I imagine that doggy-style is the most popular position in the old folks home, what with the old ladies already bent double and everything. The old men must be thinking, “Thank God for osteoporosis!”


03 March 2008

Thank You for Choosing Kite, You Sad Sad Man

Last week I received my tax refund check, much to my delight. Large sums of money showing up in the mail for my personal benefit have a tendency to make me giddy for some strange reason. While throwing wads of cash here and there this past week I was reminded of my first refund check in Chicago. I had even written a journal entry about it, and that is what I'm sharing with you starting....now.


After a night of heavy drinking with Rolling Thunder I went to Hell today. A big boss is coming tomorrow so we had to stay until at least 10:30 recovering. In the midst of closing Irish McDrunky stopped by with Mike, a bartender from O'Neils, to flip me off and indicate through subtle sign language that I should join them for a drink.
What followed was various varieties of spirits. I was somewhat snookered but Irish was gone, as he had been drinking for roughly 8 hours. His stagger was impressive, his speech only half intelligible and restraint practically nonexistent. While walking to the Red Line a homeless man with one eye approached and Irish flatly said "I'm a Republican. I pretend that you don't even exist." I thought this particularly humorous, even if he relived it 5 times afterward.
On the train we sat and chatted a bit, then he got off at Belmont. This girl came in, hands shaking, gaunt faced with a blank wide-eyed expression as she openly looked at me. As we began to move she pulled out a packet of Kite tobacco with rolling papers. She proceeded to roll 5 cigarettes within 4 or 5 stops. I simply stared in amazement as I had never seen someone hand roll anything. She tucked the last one behind her ear as we pulled into her stop, and when she left she left the packet.
I'm trying to quit smoking and haven't bought any cigarettes for around a week and hadn't smoked any for 2 days. Feeling the craving I snatched what I saw as free tobacco on my way out of the train car. When I got home I checked my mail and praise God, my refund check had arrived!
Craving a celebratory portion of substance and not having alcohol I decided to hand roll my first cigarettes. However, on inspecting the pouch I found there were no more papers. What to do? I looked down at the counter and saw an empty package of gum. The empty pack had spewed out some slips of the white paper that is wrapped around the sticks of gum, outside the foil. I determined these white slips were good enough.
Having never rolled joints myself all I had to go on was mimicking the girl on the train and Johnny Depp interviews. I sprinkled some tobacco, folded over one side of the flap and tried to make a cigarette. Due to the paper's thickness and formally folded state the tube had angled sides instead of a clearly cylindrical form. I licked the sided of the remaining flap, trying to glue it down with my saliva, even though there was no adhesive strip on the paper like you would find on actual rolling papers. It barely worked but at least I had something. The sorriest looking cigarette ever.
I went outside to smoke it. I puffed on my hand fashioned monstrosity, noting the flavor of mentholated tobacco...and burning paper with just a hint of sophisticated watermelon (the gum flavor). The aftertaste was bitter and towards the end the smoke burned my throat and mouth.
Just stopping and actually thinking about what I was doing made me realize how sad and pathetic it really was. So I made one more then went to bed.