Friday, 29 August 2003: I can't believe that I'm actually at work today. I know it may not sound weird to many of you out there that I'm working on a Friday. God forbid, right? Well, to me it's weird because I haven't worked a single Friday here at AU since June 13. That's a good two and a half months. I took off on June 20 and 27 because of the cruise. The next Friday after that was July 4 which is a federal holiday here in the States. And then I just decided to take off the next bunch of Fridays using vacation days that I have stored up so I can spend time with Katie. It's been nice. I haven't missed the place at all. But, now I'm back. And I don't like it. At least I still get a long weekend now because Monday is Labor Day. But it's just not the same because Katie has to work. Yuck. I want my Fridays back.
Thursday, 28 August 2003: It's been a helluva long time since I've boarded my soapbox, so "All Aboard!"
I'm going to take this moment to discuss some music lately that has really pissed me off to no end.
The first is Metallica. They recently released their first studio album since, I believe, 1996's "ReLoad". I was once a pretty big Metallica fan and I've got to say that I'm really not much of one anymore. They've completely wussed out. I have heard two songs from this new album (what's it called... something like "Self Loathing, Inc.") and I can say, with no reservations, that it sucks. If both of the made-for-radio tracks suck, that doesn't say a whole helluva lot for the rest of the album, now does it? These guys were once the kings of speed metal. They were hard, fast, and unrelenting. They took no prisoners. Now, they're just in it for the money. They're corporate puppets. They are now all about the bottom line. In Metallica's own words... sad, but true.
The next target of today's wrath is the Counting Crows. I really liked these guys for quite a while. No, I don't own any of their albums, but I always dug their sound and rarely ever turned the dial when a song of theirs would come on. Now, they've ruined it for me. They've covered a classic called "Parking Lot" which I believe was originally performed by Joni Mitchell and just mangled the hell out of it. The cover is officially credited to Counting Crows and Vanessa Carlton, and I just don't understand why. The only part she has in the song is effectively contained within the line, "mmm, bop, bop, bop." Does that really warrant co-artist credit? No, I don't think so. And the radio stations, at least in the Chicago area, are killing us with overplay of this song. That and we now have to deal with these stupid Kids Rock commercials advertising a CD with today's popular songs sung by children and this is one of them. Why God? Why?
Popular music has just been so painful for the last decade. And the RIAA thinks that sales are down because of file sharing? No, blame the artists and producers. They put out shit and expect it to sell. Most of the time, it does. The rest of the time, people realize how bad it is and just don't buy it.
Soapbox dismounted... for now.
Wednesday, 27 August 2003: I think it's about time to start revisiting some of the links in the right column. I've noticed that many of those sites, I just don't care about anymore. So, since the new TV season is starting, I may begin adding links to the homepages of some of our favorite TV shows. That could be cool, right? If you don't agree, TS. That's all I've got to say.
Tuesday, 26 August 2003: Since my friend Wiggy, who set himself up as the commissioner of our fantasy football league this year, has been acting like a complete slackass lately (we haven't even conducted a draft yet), I went ahead and joined a second league for fantasy football. This one is just a public league through Yahoo with a bunch of people I've never met at all. Well, they definitely are not slackers in this league. Within 12 hours of joining, we held our draft. Here's my team, and I must say that I'm pretty impressed with it despite having very few bench positions that I can play with...
Starters (how they were ordered by Yahoo; not necessarily how I will start them):
- QB:Brad Johnson (Tampa Bay)
- WR: Eric Moulds (Buffalo), Derrick Mason (Tennessee), Troy Brown (New England)
- RB: LaDanian Tomlinson (San Diego), Travis Henry (Buffalo)
- TE: Todd Heap (Baltimore)
- K: Sebastian Janikowski (Oakland)
- DEF: Oakland
- QB: Steve McNair (Tennessee)
- WR: Corey Bradford (Houston), Chris Chambers (Miami)
- RB: Kevan Barlow (San Francisco)
- TE: Matt Schobel (Cincinnati)
- K: Paul Edinger (Chicago)
I'm pretty happy with several of my picks like Moulds, Mason, Tomlinson, Henry, and Heap. I really dig on Janikowski and Johnson as well. Hell, I'm ecstatic about my backup QB McNair and may wind up starting him over my designated starter.
However, I'm not too keen on the fact that the commish in this public league set us up for a three receiver starting lineup and only gave us six bench spaces. I'd like to ditch one of my backup receivers so I can nab an alternate running back. However, when you look at my bye weeks, I lose two of my starting receivers in week 9, so I need both of my bench receivers to fill in that week. I've already got a pending free agent pick up (should go through tonight) so I can nab the Titans defense as a backup in place of Schobel at TE. I really don't need a second TE as I would lose very few points during the week that Heap is off. TE's never really score much anyway unless you're Tony Gonzalez from Kansas City or Jeremy Shockey from the New York Giants (who was my TE last season). If I don't have a backup DEF, I could lose some pretty serious points during that off week.
Wow, can't believe I'm actually going to balance two teams. Aye aye aye.
Monday, 25 August 2003: I know I've told you all about how I watch "Spin City" in the morning, right? Well, right afterwards, I usually tune in to "Today" on NBC.
Lately, I've been noticing an alarming trend... it is very rare that you actually see both Katie Couric and Matt Lauer cohosting at the same time. I don't think I've seen it in several weeks to be honest with you. Either one of them is on location or on vacation or some such. Think about it, the last couple of weeks, Katie was hosting with Lester Holt while Matt was "away" and now Matt has either Anne Curry or some other woman whose name I don't know as his cohost while Katie is on a two-week vacation. And several times before that, one of them would be on location doing a report while the other is in the studio. I know that this is the prime time to take vacation, but with all the murmuring I've heard lately about what a diva Katie Couric can be, I'm wondering if the two just don't get along anymore. When they are together on screen, they seem relatively cool towards each other and I don't mean "cool" as in "hip, friendly, cool."
Sunday, 24 August 2003: If you've been following the "Recent Updates" box lately, you may have noticed a big difference from the norm. Instead of a ton of new movie reviews, as would normally be the case, there have been very few of those and a ton of book reviews. Never really thought about until today as I was typing up two new reviews and I remembered that I had typed up two more earlier this week while, in the same time span, I've only watched one movie and that was a DVD rental. Oh, and the fifth book review was written by my friend. So much for being the raging movie freak I always claimed to be, eh?