Some of you are probably thinking, what if the NCAA tournament started on a Wednesday? What would take precedence, 16 bracket-killing games or the Mid-Week Mailbag? Well, luckily, we don’t have to make that call. At least until the NCAA expands the field to 128 teams. I taped my bracket (Philly Inquirer this year–think global, act local) to the wall and I’m completely free of mind and ready to crank out the mail bag. Let’s get it…
Q: Peyton Manning is being lured by several teams. By the time you answer this, he could be signed, but my question isn’t about his destination. It’s about the recruitment process. If you were a coveted free agent, how much would all the ass-kissing play into your decision? Would you cross a team off because they took you to the wrong restaurant? Or, do you think it’s a song and dance they go through before asking the really important question–how much money? Gerald Fitzlarry, Phoenix, AZ.
A: Despite this blog’s existence being an obvious cry for attention, I really don’t fancy being fawned over. Not that it happens, I’m just not sure I would feel comfortable walking into a conference room and seeing a video presentation about my future, or a photoshop of me wearing some team’s hat at a Hall of Fame induction. That’s me, though. Your everyday star athlete is a total egomaniac. Even Peyton Manning, who we can all agree, doesn’t really register on the swag meter, is used to being treated A CERTAIN WAY. Peyton’s making a big show about checking out facilities, things of that nature, but I guarantee you he had a predetermined list of destinations and now he’s just doing a wallet check disguised as a fact-finding tour of the nation. If he really wanted to win, he wouldn’t be considering Miami. I don’t think Peyton would take a team off the list if he wasn’t properly entertained. Now, having Brandon Marshall on the other hand? TOTAL VIOLATION. From the team’s perspective, this is how I look at it. It’s a bit like going on the Bachelor. The chicks don’t necessarily care about the guy, they just don’t want to be rejected on TV. So, they’re there. They go for it. Same with the winers and diners, if a big name free-agent is coming in, you might as well pull out all the stops. What could it hurt?
Q: The other day I got out of my car at a convenience store and just let the sweetie running. A friend who was with me was appalled. We then got into a semi-heated argument over how likely it was that the car could get stolen from in front of the store in broad daylight. Keep in mind we were in a perfectly “fine” neighborhood. He was totally overreacting, correct? Memphis Reigns, New Orleans, LA.
A: Unless you’re not sure the car will start back up, I don’t really see the point of leaving it running. Was it 113 degrees? Or twenty below? If you are going to get out for two minutes and come back to mid-rare ass cheeks on the scorching leather if you don’t leave the AC on–OK. But, I see that isn’t really the question. Is it dangerous to leave a car running? I’ve had a car stolen from me in my life and it was locked (and NOT RUNNING) when it happened. I also once heard a man of some experience and distinction tell the story of leaving a car running in a “bad” neighborhood for hours in hopes that it would get stolen–there were no takers. This is a guy could make a car disappear for you in the bottom of a container ship if that was something you were interested in. Also, if the car is running, isn’t it assumed that you’re either a) going to reappear at any moment or b) such a dangerous SON OF A GUN that no one in their right mind would ever take your car? I think the more you lock up your car, the less capable you are of doing something about it if it’s stolen. I say leave the “sweetie” running. We may have just solved the car theft epidemic.
Q: A lot of my friends are starting to have kids. This means that pretty much all they do is put pictures of them up all over the internet, most notably, Facebook. I know I am powerless against this, and I even cop to occasionally enjoying a picture of a kid, but my question is, how long before the kid is too old for their parents to be constantly putting up pictures online? Cy Cheese, Dover, DE.
A: The backlash against kids on Facebook is amazing. People don’t want to be reminded that they’re adults. Just leave me alone and let me play my damn WORDS WITH FRIENDS. If this is really a problem for you, just close your Facebook account now. Cut the cord. Because soon the REST of your friends will be having kids, then the real late bloomers will finally pop a few out, then before you know it, you’ll be old as sheeeit and your friends will be posting pictures of their grandchildren. The cycle never ends. I see a lot of pictures of kids on Facebook and I’m only friends with about 70 people. Personally, it doesn’t really bother me, but I can’t imagine if I was one of these flippin’ butterflies with over 1,000 friends. That’s a gosh dang toddler avalanche. On a case by case basis, I’m going to invent a rule right now. When the kid is old enough to have his own Facebook page–the parents need to stop it with the pictures. I imagine the kid will demand this anyway. When you’re 12 and
stalking romancing some hottie in homeroom it’s not going to help your game if your parents are tagging you in pictures all day like, “Buster’s 1st Easter Egg Hunt,” and “Look who finally outgrew their swimmies.” That kind of overlap cannot exist for an adolescent.
Q: I saw a red velvet “muffin” store the other day. That’s just complete BS, right? That’s a cupcake without icing. Betty C. Pittsburgh, PA.
A: Muffins are a total scam. You might be better off eating a cupcake. At least then you know what you’ve done. You don’t cruise into lunch and pound a down a burger and fries because you “only had a muffin” for breakfast. Muffins are a tasty treat. I love corn muffins so much and now reading this question I’m wondering if there would be a way to put icing on them. When I was a kid we used to occasionally make this muffin mix that was filled with these candied raspberries. I don’t think they were REAL raspberries, just some type of flavored, red sugar bomb. Anyway, those were amazing. I’m not sure when I realized how obese muffins were. It may have been at Wawa. Did anyone else notice that for a fleeting moment or two, Wawa posted the calorie counts in the doughnut case? GRAVE ERROR. I went in there for a coffee cake muffin and it said 1.3 billion calories underneath it, and I had to shut the door. I stood there, mouth AGAPE. Troubling experience. Since then, I don’t check up on my muffins. To answer the question, there’s no way in hell that red velvet thing was a muffin. And, why is red velvet so ON FIRE right now? It’s the velvet part, right? It just SCREAMS luxuriousness.
Q: If you had to pick one, would you rather hunt or fish? I’m asking this as someone who wouldn’t want to do either, not as someone who can’t decide their favorite hobby. Buck Trout, Augusta, ME.
A: I don’t know exactly what you mean here, so the answer would be different depending on the circumstances. Would I rather sit on a boat or go squirreling up a tree at 4 am? I’d take the boat. Now, are we actually doing what we set out to do? Because that changes everything. Fish are disgusting. Do I have to touch the fish? I don’t think I could do that, but on the other hand, if something has to die–fish every time. Unless we’re talking mutant geese, in which case, pass me the bird shot, Leroy! Of course, if we were catch and release fishing, maybe I’d choose that so that nothing had to give its life. So, I think we’re building a scale of some sort here. Try to follow along. If I have to touch the fish, I think I’d probably rather take a shot at something. I’d just fire, SCREAM, drop the gun, close my eyes, sprint in the opposite direction–and hope I missed. And, by the way, they sell meat in grocery stores.
Q: I was in a bookstore the other day and they had a display titled, “Great book, terrible movie,” or something like that. Then, a few days later I saw a blog devoted to the same thing. My question is, isn’t the book always better? Just in some cases the movie happens to be pretty good too? Nicki Sparx, Orlando, FL.
A: This must have been an independent book seller. You’d never see something like that at a chain. At Barnes and Noble, it’s like, “LOOK! KRISTEN STEWART’S FACE IS EMBOSSED ON THIS COVER!!!!” I think when you can slap, “Now a Major Motion Picture,” on a book cover it certainly helps get people’s attention. How bad can it be if someone bought the movie rights? Spoiler–pretty bad. I’m inclined to believe that the book is usually better, and often by a large margin. Great books can occasionally make decent movies? Other times the movies are unbearable. It’s amazing how bad the Great Gatsby, or Bonfire of the Vanities is in movie form. It doesn’t really make sense. Sometimes a bad adaptation can make you question the book. Was it really that good? Perhaps Fitzgerald was a total hack. He’s just blinding you with West Egg glitz and glam–there’s no story there. Of course, that isn’t the case. Let me try to think of something….how about One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest. Great book, but admittedly maybe not for everyone? And, a great movie. Maybe some John Grisham book? The Pelican Brief has Denzel in it, after all. Hunt for Red October? I’m open for suggestions, even in the close races, I’m going to favor the book on principle.
Q: I saw this story on the morning news that Tide (specifically) detergent is the new bartered IT item for drugs, etc. – and some guy in the mid-west was caught stealing cart loads of Tide. Apparently price has doubled over the last couple years, I know I usually buy small/knock-off brands (shocking for you, i know)…but my co-worker and I are begging you for an explanation on why detergent prices have exploded?
A: I’m actually a Tide user. It is a little disturbing how much it costs when you buy the bottle, but it seems to last for a while. If I had a big family and was doing a lot more laundry, I’m sure it would hit me a little harder. Apparently the cost increase is just due to oil prices, which is making everything more expensive. Guess there are some sweet chemicals derived from oil in your Tide. Hey, as long as my clothes come out smelling like a SPRING SHOWER. I also noticed there appears to be some backlash against the rampant Tide theft stories. I saw the article you mentioned, some old-timer loaded up carts of merchandise and just strolled out of the store with it, a 25,000 dollar take that included a bunch of Tide, but authorities are now saying the story (as it pertains to Tide) was a bit exaggerated. I saw something that said Tide had “street value” because it was such a recognizable brand and was untraceable because of a lack of serial numbers? Authorities are saying there has been no noticeable spike in Tide theft, of late, though. So, you do not need to rush out and build a wall safe to protect your laundry detergent.