Monday, August 29, 2011

Soccer - The Bunch Ball Method - Other Applications

Over the past weekend, I was able to take in a couple of soccer games.  By 'take in' I mean coach and by 'soccer games' I of course mean chaotic kicking while wearing brightly colored uniforms.

As coach, it is my responsibility to manage the chaos within the lines.  This is a lot like trying to get shepherd six kids down the candy isle without on piece of candy leaving the shelf.  Now, don't get me wrong, hard though it may be to keep the kids in the lines, I was laughing most of the time.

Part of the humor is what people like to call 'bunch ball'.  It's where all kids surround the ball in a menacing way and kick at the same time.  The effect of all the kicking produces very humorous results.  The kids get all turned around as the parents yell, "KICK IT", and "GO THE OTHER WAY" at the top of their lungs, which to kids on the field sounds a lot like "DJFPEOIJAS SDFOIJT" and  "HEIUXCF SDF GJOWE FSOBNX".  All of this inevitably leads to the ball going wherever it wants to and the kids chase after it until bunch ball begins again.

I have been thinking recently how not unlike bunch ball some so called 'grown up' pursuits can be.  For example, I think bunch ball accurately describes the way politicians go at a topic.  For example, taxes.  One group for and one group against stands around the issue kicking with all their might.  No direction is required, just kick.  The problem is that no matter how much you kick the ball, it never seems to get any closer to the goal.  All the while, the tax payers are yelling at them to do one thing or an other which the politicians construe to mean that they are doing a good job, as they are not really listening anyway.

Bunch ball accomplishes nothing most of the time other than making everyone tired.  The problem is that it chaos sometimes produces a desired result, so it perpetuates chaos as the way to accomplish something.

Another example of 'grown up' bunch ball is how many people approach life in general.  Rather than setting specific goals for improvement, they simply go down the road of life looking for the ball and start kicking it along with everyone else.  Eventually one of them will get some success, but on the whole, no one accomplishes much of anything.

The moral of today's story should be obvious.  Bunch ball is fun to watch, but hardly worth your time the older you get.

Friday, August 26, 2011

..... .... my aching back....

Today, as part of my never ending quest to explain what happens when you age... I SAID, AS PART OF MY NEVER ENDING QUEST TO EXPLAIN WHAT HAPPNES WHEN YOU AGE... I am always on the alert for interesting quirks of getting old.

I, myself, am not old yet, but I have experiencing some of the joys of aging.  One happened today.  I was walking down the hall at work with a microwavable pizza when for reasons unknown, I decided to attempt to drop it.  Neat thing about me is my cat like reflexes.  Meaning, my brain reacts quickly to stuff like that.  Problem is, my brain doesn't have hands to catch stuff, so it uses my body.

My body, while mostly cooperative, this time decided to perform in a less than helfull way.  In slow motion, I watched as the pizza tumbled toward the ground.  My brain then imediately sends the signals to my arms, back, legs, abs, feet, and for some reason a small seldom used muscle on my back.  This muscle, which by all rights should only be used while lifting sacks of rice sideways onto a large table, goes crazy and attempts (I can only assume) to catch the falling pizza on its own.

Now this little muscle, also without hands and the power to do anything other than move said sacks of rice sideways onto a large table, demonstrating courage and the chutzpah of a nerdy kid asking the head cheerleader on a date, blows up in the attempt.

I now have a pain about two inches under my left shoulder blade.  Interesting pain it is too.

Oh and I have come to the the interesting quirk of getting old... telling everyone about the pain.

You're Welcome.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

The Switcheroo

I was sitting at my desk today eating some pretzels, when it occured to me that my mouth was exceedingly dry.  I reached for my cup that was filled with pink lemonade.  I put the straw to my mouth and took a large sip.

I gagged as I realized that there were two cups on my desk.  One with my ice cold pink lemonade, and the other with something I can only describe as foot fungus in liquid form.  As I went into convulsions, I looked around to try to get a grasp on what just happened.

It then all came back to me.  One of my co-workers had come to my desk to ask a question and had left their 'health' drink at my desk.  With it being the same cup type, I had no idea that I was about to injest his liquid foot fungus....

This brings me to my two points of the day...

1 - Eating foot fungus is not healthy.

2 - 'A cup full of foot fungus' sounds like a great name for a band.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Ask the Chef - How To Make The Perfect Hamburger

On today's 'Ask the Chef' we will be talking about grilling.  In particular we will be talking about the rare art of grilling ground beef.  When cooking a hamburger, many do not understand the important place they hold in society.  As the master of the grill, you wield the power of taste, to provide the satisfaction of stomach. You are the pleaser of the palate... the sultan of patty... (t-shirt pending).

When you cook your hamburger, there are some things to do and some things not to do. I have a very simple list of Do's and Don'ts...

  • Do use real meat. Beef only.  Sure they call them hamburgers not beefburgers, but don't use ham and for heaven's sake don't use turkey....
  • Do use beef with low fat content, or be prepared to start with a one foot wide burger and end up with one that is roughly the size of the cheapy burgers at McDonald's. 
  • Do use some kind of barbecue sauce
  • Do include garlic
  • Don't make bricks. Meaning, don't overcook. Flame kissed, not flame French kissed.
  • If you are using hamburger from your local grocery store (gags), DON'T UNDER COOK. It is frowned upon in culinary circles when your guests die from some crazy bacteria.
  • Don't walk away from the grill. A perfect burger is killed by BFD (Burger Forgetfullness Disorder) moments.
  • Don't tick of the bees. Bees are a part of grilling, so it's better if they be happy.
  • Last but not least, watch out for crazy uncle Lou. He has been banned from backyard barbeque's for a reason. DON'T INVITE LOU.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Why Is The Sky Blue?

This is one of lifes great questions, right next to why do we have boogers and the all important question, if a woodchuck could chuck wood, how much wood could a woodchuck chuck?
The mind boggles...
Where was I?  Oh yeah, well, to be honest, the sky has no color. Blue is what are eyes perceive, but there is no pigment to Nitrogen, and Oxygen.  Even more peculiar is that space is black, but how can nothing have a color? And if nothing has a color, and the sky is colorless, then wouldn't the sky be nothing too? 
And if nothing can be black and blue then why is water blue in oceans and lakes?  Water is hydrogen and oxygen which when combined together makes a visible liquid that has no color, but is hardly nothing.  If water has a blue color in a lake or ocean, why does it not have a color when it's in my glass? 
So, in conclusion, if water, the sky, and space have no color, and are not nothing... why do they look the way they do?

Answer: God

Friday, August 5, 2011

What School Are You From?

An interesting thing happened on the way to work this morning.  As I was driving, I came across a rather shiny red Corvette that was pulled over on the side of the street.  In the brief few seconds I had to observe, I noted a few rather interesting things.

1 - The Corvette was brand spanking new.  This was easy to spot as the new owner license sticker was still there in place of the actual license plate.

2 - There was a man who, obviously in the throws of a spectacular midlife crisis, was standing in too-short-to-be-legal shorts, white socks, sandals, and a curiously bold Hawaiian shirt.

3 - The man was holding a phone.  Not a sleek phone to match his Corvette mind you, but a substantially hefty flip phone.

This brings me to today's initial question with an even more intriguing follow up.  Seeing that there are two schools, old and new, from which school are you?  Is it possible to be from both schools and not look/act/feel like an idiot?

For this man, I think he is the captain of the Old School rowing team.  The problem for him is that while he is very good at rowing, and the quite popular at the Old School, he only has eyes for the New School.  You see, his son goes to the New School where they have something called 'moto...cross' and ''.  Even more intriguing is something called MT...... V and uh.... X... Games.

So Mr. Rowing Captain decides to come up to the New School for a visit and puts in his papers for a transfer.  Rowing doesn't exist at the New School and he isn't quite sure how oars fit in with Motocross.  Should he discard the oars?  Heck no.  Those oars look mighty fine as wings on his dirt bike.

Mr. Rowing Captain then changes his name to Mr. Cool Oar Guy and buys a new shiny dirt bike that he refuses to drive anywhere and gives his comb over a faux hawk.

So, to answer the question, no you cannot be from both schools, and yes you look and act stupid when you try.  The problem is that it feels soooooo good....

Thursday, August 4, 2011

If It A'int Broke...

There are varying definitions people assign to the word  'broken'.  Take the iPhone for instance.  I know some people who would view a scratch on any part of their iPhone as critical damage.  Then there are some who could drop it from a bridge into a lake full of boiling lava and as long as they could still make out the 'Apple' logo, it would suffice.

With such a wide variation in our views on the subject, it is no wonder that we as humans spend so much time arguing over the concept of 'broken'.  For example, I have a hat that I have used for many years.  To me, the sweat stains and the little thread that hangs down from the bill add to the character of the hat.  Hard working head wear doesn't come around every day.  My wife on the other hand keeps trying to cut the thread off, or throw the hat away completely.  I think she has even tried to put Febreze on it to kill the smell....  Come to think of it....  I haven't seen that hat for a long time....

Do the police allow missing persons reports for hats?

Back From Vacation

So it turns out that people actually miss this blog when I am gone.  Go figure.