Saturday, December 31, 2011

2011 into 2012

I'm very thankful for all the challenges presented to me this year and for all my failings. They've helped me find faith in myself and discover my true sense of self-worth.

Monday, December 26, 2011

2012 NBA Predictions

The lockout is over and the NBA is finally back.

In the East, I like the Knicks and the Heat to play in the Conference Finals.
The 76ers and the Bulls will make the Semis.
The Magic (if Howard stays), the Hawks, the Pacers, and the Celtics will lose in the first round. If Howard leaves, the Bucks will make it.

In the West, the Thunder and the Spurs will make the Conference Finals.
The Mavs and the Grizzlies will make the Semis.
The Lakers, Clippers, the Blazers, and the Nuggets will lose in the first round.

The Heat over the Thunder 4-1.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Encroaching Shariah

Reason #148 why the impending Muslim take over and subsequent imposition of Shariah law is a good thing:

At least shit will be open during Christmas.

Friday, December 23, 2011

Oh, the Irony

I stopped at a stop sign. I was looking to make a right turn as it was the end of the road. I looked left and began to drive. Out of nowhere, a middle aged white man on a bicycle runs the stop sign and darts out into the middle of the road. I quickly shifted my car into the second lane from the right as to not hit him.

I drive to the right light and stop. The man on the bicycle rides past me on my left an, looks back, and mutters something at me. I scream out of my ope window, "I had the right of way!" The man turns around and peddles back towards me.

"I had the right of way!" I scream again. "How do you figure?" he asks. "I was there first." Then he makes up something about driving lines. I tell him, "Listen, if you're on the road, you have to follow the rules. I was there first. I had the right away. You had to get behind me." He repeats some shit about driving lines.

He peddles off into the left turn lane. The light turns green and I drive by him yelling, "You have to follow the rules! You have to follow the rules!"

I pass the intersection and look down and realize I'm wearing my Curb Your Enthusiasm shirt.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

The Superfluous Pound-for-Pound Best

Here is the year-end version of my obnoxiously unnecessary and utterly superfluous list of the top 10 pound-for-pound boxers. The previous list was posted on September 21.

1) Floyd Mayweather (42-0, 26 KOs), [Previous Rank: 2]
2) Manny Pacquiao (54-3-2, 38 KOs), [PR: 1]
3) Juan Manuel Marquez (53-6-1, 39 KOs), [PR: 6]
4) Sergio Martinez (48-2-2, 27 KOs), [PR: 3]
5) Wladimir Klitschko (56-3, 49 KOs), [PR: 4]
6) Vitali Klitschko (43-2, 40 KOs), [PR: 5]
7) Nonito Donaire (27-1, 18 KOs), [PR: 8]
8) Andre Ward (25-0, 13 KOs), [PR: NR]
9) Timothy Bradley (28-0, 12 KOs), [PR: 7]
10) Lamont Peterson (30-1-1, 15 KOs), [PR: NR]

Exiting the list:
Bernard Hopkins (52-5-2, 32 KOs), [PR: 9]
Pongsaklek Wonjongkam (83-3-1, 44 KOs), [PR: 10]

Monday, December 19, 2011

Kim Jong-Il is Dead

This has been a momentous year in terms of deaths for America's enemies. Gaddafi, bin Laden, and now Kim have all perished in 2011. Many Americans rejoice at the news of these men's deaths. I ask myself, "Why?"

All human life is sacred. That is an essential truth that neither Gaddafi, bin Laden, nor Kim understood or acknowledged. That doesn't excuse us from remembering it. Though these men were responsible for much misery in the world, they were valuable because they were human.

Another aspect we Americans also miss is that Gaddafi, bin Laden, and Kim do not hold a monopoly on murder. Leaders all over the world, including in those in the United States, are also responsible for the loss of innumerable lives.

We celebrate when death happens to a so-called enemy and mourn when someone on our side dies. Whether or not the deceased person is a murderer doesn't determine if we mourn or celebrate. The question is: did they kill the right people? We must move past this and condemn all killing while celebrating all life.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Incestuous Americans

In Minnesota, a high school played a prank on its own athletes. The athletes were blindfolded and told they were making out with their sweethearts and then were asked to guess the person they were kissing.

But instead of their sweethearts, they were making out their opposite sex parent. Watch the video here.

Even the Saudi royal family is creeped out by this.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

The Accident and the Idiot

I was making a right turn, one of those protected by an island. I thought I could go, but realized a car was going faster than I had thought, so I stopped. Four seconds later.... BAM!

I got rear-ended. I pulled over to the side, stuck my hand out of the window motioning the car behind me to pull over. It didn't.

I got out of the car and motioned for the car to pull over. It was still frozen. I kept motioning and telling the person to pull over, pointing behind my car. The car pulled out into the road as if to drive off.

I ran into the middle of the road in front of the car screaming. "You hit me! Pull over!" The car stopped before hitting me. I walked around to the man's open window. "You hit me, right?! Pull over!" The man, a black man in a silver car with paper plates indicating the newness of his vehicle, meekly answered, "I was pulling over." I said ok and started walking back to my car.

Suddenly, the man peeled out and sped off.

I jumped into my car, started it, and raced after him.

But I couldn't catch him. I missed my exit looking for him. At a light, a woman in a red SUV pulled up next to me and we talked through the open windows. "I saw what happened. I can't believe he drove off. I would be so pissed."

At the next light, a bearded man got out of his pickup truck behind me and walked to my window. "I saw what happened back there. I've already called the police and given them a description. They're looking for the guy." At that point, I halted my search and turned around to go back home.

I was surprised at the mention of the police. It never occurred to me to call them. The funny thing is that had the guy pulled over and we exchanged information, I likely wouldn't have even called in the claim to the insurance company. It's just nice to have the information in case something did unexpectedly happen to the car on the way home.

I was pleasantly surprised that so many people had my back. I thought to myself, even though people are miserable and stupid, they're also wonderful. I had another thought; I'm lucky this happened in Virginia, because if it happened in Maryland or DC, nobody would've given a damn.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

My Night at Khan-Peterson

The wait for the announcement of the scores was excruciating. It felt very long. The crowd was quiet and filled with consternation until they showed Amir Khan and Lamont Peterson a third or fourth time and we all cheered for our man. After Michael Buffer announced the scores, one for Khan, one for Peterson, and the final one 113-112, the crowd- myself included- shouted "And new! And new!" as if willing Buffer to say those words.

When he did, everyone went crazy. I can't remember the last time I literally jumped for joy. People were running around. We were all screaming and pumping our fists. Chants of DC filled the hall. The last time I experienced that kind of collective feeling was five years ago on George Mason's campus when we had just made the Final Four. The Inauguration didn't compare to last night.

Earlier in the night, I walked into the hall, which had a barn-like feel. I found my seat far back and realized quickly, because most seats were flat on the ground, that I couldn't see. So I moved over one section in the hopes that no one would ask my to move. Thankfully, they didn't.

I came at the end of a Joshua Davis decision victory. Both Terron Grant and fan favorite Dusty Harrison won by first round KOs against over-matched opponents. I saw Dusty's father Buddy walking around later.

Fernando Guerrero earned a beautiful KO in a fight that didn't get the crowd going like the others because Guerrero reps Salisbury. I thought Jamie Kavanagh lost 4-2 to Ramesis Gil, though it was ruled a draw. Kavanagh has the hand speed, but didn't have the coordination to use his speed effectively. His defense is also poor; Gil hit him with many wide punches.

Theron Williams Jr. almost stole the show with an outstanding performance in earning a second round TKO. I saw him and his father walk by later. The steam was taken out of the crowd during the Anthony Peterson fight because the boxers didn't enter to music. It didn't help that Peterson faced another DC fighter in Daniel Attah.

The best part of the Seth Mitchell fight was hearing the crowd Ooh and Ah while they were showing the slow-motion replays of Mitchell landing right hand after right hand on the face of a stunned Timur Ibragimov.

I was one section over from the Pakistani fans, who made a lot of noise, mostly with air horns and drums. They were louder per person than the Peterson fans, but drastically outnumbered. The vast majority of the crowd were black people from DC. The fans backed Peterson and booed Khan, but it wasn't until the third round, that the crowd threw itself into Lamont's corner.

A "USA" chant was started earlier, but quickly fizzled. A "DC" chant caught on and that seemed to spark Peterson. It also negatively affected Khan. In the third, the crowd hollered with ever punch Peterson landed. That would be the norm throughout the fight.

I stood during the entire fight because many people in front of me were doing the same. Even when they weren't I stood. Khan lost a point for pushing, and the pushing was noticeable. But he should've been deducted a point for constantly pushing Peterson's head down and putting him in a headlock. Lamont kept coming forward and Khan couldn't deal with the pressure. There were whole rounds that Khan was forced to run from the pressure.

In the twelfth, Khan was deducted another point for pushing (and hitting on the break). It made up for the bullshit knockdown call the ref made in the first. Even when Khan kept putting Peterson in a headlock, the ref would warn Peterson for lowering his head! So, the ref was even, if not fair.

When that second point was taken away from Khan int he final round, I screamed. I knew it would be big. In my mind, I knew it would end up being either 6-6 or 7-5 for Khan. That meant that either man would win by a point.

Peterson did. I am so happy for him. He has been through so much in his life, abandoned by his parents, left homeless to raise his younger brother when he was seven years old. Do you think if Lamont had told someone at that time, "I will be a world champion," anybody would've believed him? It shows that anything is possible. You can achieve your dreams, no matter how unlikely. Lamont Peterson is an inspiration.

Tuesday, December 06, 2011

Gandhi and Hitler

We tend to treat Mahatma Gandhi as a god and Adolph Hitler as the epitome of evil. The reality is that both are mere human beings. They are not too different from ourselves.

We tend to label them as Good or Evil as a way to distance ourselves from our potential of becoming one or the other. If Gandhi is a god, then we don't need to hold ourselves to the same standard as he did for himself. If Hitler is Evil, then we can rest assured in knowing that we will never duplicate that Evil.

Gandhi was a man of many faults. Hitler was a man of many good qualities. Gandhi's faults do not outweigh his good and Hitler's qualities do not outweigh his evil. But they are reminders of the humanity of these men. They were both complex beings and their roles in human history should not be diminished by oversimplifying those complexities.

More relevant is that we must understand that we have the capacity for good or evil that these men possessed. We may not have the opportunity to act on our good or evil impulses at this point, but they are there. So we must use every moment to better ourselves while recognizing our capacity for evil lies just under the surface.

Sunday, December 04, 2011

The Bills are Struggling

After a positive start, the Bills are struggling. I saw the writing on the wall as the Bills began to turn the ball over and the defense hasn't been proficient. The defense's string of creating turnovers has run out.

One can point to Ryan Fitzpatrick signing a monster deal earlier in the year as the Bills undoing. It might be as Fitzpatrick has seemed to have lost his edge. Losing Fred Jackson for the year has been a killer.

On the bright side, Superstar Stevie Johnson dominated Darrelle Revis last week. I loved his mocking of Plaxico Burress's stupidity and the crashing jet. I just wish the Bills had won the game.

Thursday, December 01, 2011

To be in Relationship or Not to be

There are good things about being in a relationship and good things about not being in a relationship. Let's examine.

The good about being in a relationship:
  • Emotional intimacy with a woman.
  • Consistent sex.
  • Being there for her.
  • Having her support.
  • Learning about her interests.
  • Creating shared moments.
  • Boobies!
  • Having her to hold at night.
  • Smoothing my round edges.
  • More confidence.

The good about not being in a relationship:
  • I can watch football all Sunday and not leave the couch.
  • I can spend Saturday night watching illegal pay per view boxing streams on the internet.
  • I can go to a basketball game when I want.
  • I eat what I want.
  • I go where I want.
  • I hang out with who I want.
  • I have time to write in complete sentences.

If only there was some way to combine these two lists.