Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Spectacular YouTube rabbit holes: "Auralnauts" and Screen Junkies' "Honest Trailers"

The genius of YouTube is that you search for one thing, but an hour-and-a-half later you've watched 54 more related clips.  Here's my most recent rabbit-hole experience:

It started when two Twitter accounts I follow for Celtics news got involved in a conversation regarding the newly released trailer for Rogue One: A Star Wars Story.  Included was this highly comical video (if you're a Star Wars fan) in which Darth Vader's grandson, Kylo Ren, takes in the preview for the new spinoff film:

Shortly after that I was watching "Terminator Genisys Trailer - Paradox Edition" (time-travel movies always have serious logical flaws...):

Then it was back to "STAR WARS EP 1: Jedi Party":

Before I got sucked into the rest of that series from Auralnauts (which I'm sure will happen on a later date) I was diverted by Screen Junkies' "Honest Trailers," another YouTube gold mine.  Here's their Game of Thrones:

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Andrew Benintendi's home-run-robbing catch could not have had a more perfect backdrop

During the Red Sox's 6-2 win in Tampa last night, Boston rookie Andrew Benintendi made this spectacular grab to rob the Rays' Steven Souza Jr. of an eighth-inning home run (that would've made a 3-0 game 3-2):

The catch earned the No. 1 ranking on the "Top Plays" segment of Monday's late-night SportsCenter.

Nearly as impressive as the play itself was the perfectly placed sign in the background of this photo:

Not only did Benintendi "raise up" to catch the ball, but he also appears to have intercepted the would-be homer from its crash course towards the center of that star/mini explosion logo.

H/T to @KWAPT on Twitter

Monday, August 22, 2016

I don't want a "man cave," what's cool about a cave?

What's wrong with a man balcony?
I've seen/heard the term "man cave" referenced in a lot of commercials lately, as if it's some amazing feature that every guy should try to incorporate into his house.  I get the premise and where the origin comes from--usually the basement or garage is the excess room available to do whatever you want with.

The thing is, fundamentally, caves are pretty terrible.  They're dark, windowless holes below ground.  Why would I want to hang out there?  I'll take a "man roof-top balcony with an ocean view" instead, please.  Sure, building a waterfront vista into your home can be difficult, but I'd still prefer some sunlight and a tree or two rather than a cave.

I guess my point is "man cave" is a dumb expression and I wish we used something else.  Also, it's always nice to be able to see outside.

Sunday, August 21, 2016

2000 consecutive days of blogging

Oak Bluffs, August 19, 2016
Today is the 2000th consecutive day that I've posted a blog on time off for summer vacations, Christmas, or even my honeymoon.  I'm now only 633 days away from passing Cal Ripken.

The first post ever was on March 2, 2011.  In the beginning I wrote more than one per day, so blog No. 2000 actually came back in July.

To celebrate, here's a clip of the best fireworks show on the planet, the annual late-August display in Oak Bluffs, on Martha's Vineyard:

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Awesome Old Song of the Week: "Teenage Dirtbag" by Wheatus

"He lives on my block, and drives an I-Roc."
I don't remember when exactly I discovered Wheatus' Teenage Dirtbag, but I think it was long after the song's release in 2000.  Regardless, I find its lyrics quite entertaining.

Until I looked up the video just now I had no idea that it was featured in the Jason Biggs/Mena Suvari movie Loser from the same year (a "loser" itself that attempted to ride the coattails of 1999's American Pie, which also starred the same two actors).

I can't say I've ever heard another song by Wheatus, but I assume some do exist.   

Friday, August 19, 2016

Contributions to's Celtics Summer Forecast, Week 3's Chris Forsberg put together a Celtics Summer Forecast in which he asked local writers/bloggers to make a series of predictions regarding the 2016-17 team.  Here are my contributions for Week 3 (with links to the full articles):

What's the most intriguing game on the schedule?

October 27, at Chicago:

It's the first TNT game of the season and the whole country will be watching. Not only that, but it's also the debut of the new Dwyane Wade (and Rajon Rondo!) Bulls. Plus, Boston will be tested with the second night of a back-to-back on the road right out of the gates, a situation it has excelled in under [Brad] Stevens. Assuming the Celtics handle Brooklyn in their opener, this will be a chance to immediately establish themselves as one of the East's elite.

What will be the biggest story of training camp?

Danny Ainge trying to avoid cutting anyone:

If [Abdel] Nader is there (meaning he didn't agree to a D-League contract), he'll either need to make the 15-man roster or be cut or traded. The same is already true for [Ben] Bentil and his partially guaranteed deal. In addition to those two, [James] Young and [RJ] Hunter will likely be fighting for the final spot on the team. Assuming Nader does sign with Maine in the D-League and Hunter wins the battle for 15th man, Ainge will have to find trade partners for Young and Bentil or release them outright -- something you know he doesn't want to do.

I also wrote about the Abdel Nader conundrum for CelticsLife.

What are you most concerned about wih the 2016-17 squad?

What if (Evan Turner + Jared Sullinger > Al Horford)?:

Sullinger was the Celtics' leading rebounder last year at 8.3 per game, even though he only logged 23.6 minutes a night. Before Isaiah Thomas' arrival in Boston, there were times when Sully was arguably the team's best player. Turner was the backup point guard and the only guy besides Thomas who could create his own shot in crunch time. What if the loss of Sullinger and Turner is a bigger deal than we expect? Is it possible the addition of Horford won't make up the difference? Rebounding is at the heart of this concern. Horford pulled down just 7.3 boards per contest last season, despite averaging 8.5 more minutes than Sullinger.

What postseason award might a Celtic win?

Stevens, Coach of the Year:

[Steve] Kerr isn't going to get it again unless the Durant Warriors win 74 games (not happening). [Ty] Lue? Come on, LeBron James is the real coach of the Cavs. Gregg Popovich? Tim Duncan may have been the Tom Brady to his Bill Belichick. Quin Snyder could be a trendy pick if the Jazz make some noise out West, but if Stevens guides Boston to 50-plus wins and the East's No. 2 seed, he should have as good a case as anyone.

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Team USA basketball is failing to use it's obvious advantage, I blame coaching strategy

The United States men's basketball team got back on track in Rio yesterday with a 105-78 quarterfinal victory over Argentina.  However, after winning their previous three games by a combined total of just 16 points, the Americans fell behind Argentina 19-9 right out of the gates.

While some countries clearly play better as teams than the U.S. does, talent-wise our squad is astronomically better than everybody else.  The head coach, Mike Krzyzewksi, isn't taking advantage of this.  All of these games should be blowouts.  Krzyzewski has unparalleled depth that is going to waste--other nations have a few NBA players on their rosters, but nothing close at the end of their benches.

Here's what Team USA should do: Try to run as much as possible from the opening tip.  Full-court press on defense on the very first possession.  Substitute continuously and use all 12 guys on the roster.  A "no jumpers in the first five minutes" rule might be useful to promote getting to the rim.  Opponents will be exhausted after the first quarter, with the U.S. likely already way out in front.

There's also this:

I don't see myself getting the Team USA coaching gig any time soon, but Paul Westhead (who's 1990 Denver Nuggets averaged 120 points per game) would be the perfect guy.  Or Rick Pitino, in particular the 1997 version.

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