Friday, March 27, 2015

Twitter translate is awesome and hilarious

Twitter is really doing some solid work lately with all the new buttons they are adding.  First "tweet activity," and now "translate."

There are a few Celtics accounts from other countries that sometimes share my stuff in foreign languages:

The other day I noticed that little picture of the earth in the upper right corner for the first time.  This one below yielded some pretty spectacular results:

When they showed this highlight on SportsCenter, how amazing would it have been to hear Neil Everett say "Jonas Jerebko--putting the waste in place!"

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Red Sox prediction for 2015

I just finished writing the Complete Boston Red Sox 2015 Season Preview for Bleacher Report.  I highly recommend taking a look.  Here's a quick summary:

- The Red Sox offense should be spectacular.  Mookie Betts (pictured) is poised to become a superstar at 22 years of age.  The rate at which he's blown through the minors is unbelievable (I do want to say for the record, though, I'm the tiniest bit concerned that despite his .471 average, he has zero walks through 11 spring training games).
- The rotation scares me.  If everybody pitches their best, it'll be fine.  But, that's a lot to ask.  If things go in the opposite direction it could be a nightmare.
- I'm also nervous about Koji Uehara.  He's about to turn 40, and he was terrible at the end of last season.

All in all, I think great offense + mediocre pitching = a pretty good team.

87-75, AL Wild Card is my prediction.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

A sad day for Spiders

I feel as though I'd be doing my Richmond Spiders an injustice to let a who college basketball season go by without writing about them once.  UR finished 21-14 this year after falling to Miami, 63-61, in the NIT quarterfinals yesterday.

The Spiders earned a No. 1 seed in the NIT (I love how they announce the seeds now), but looked like a small conference team against a big conference team in crunch time of last night's defeat.

Richmond held the Hurricanes scoreless for an 8:05 stretch in the first half, building an early 13-2 lead at the Robins Center.  The Spiders' outstanding defense continued into the second half, and with 16:54 left in the game they actually doubled-up Miami, 36-18, after a Kendall Anthony (pictured) three-pointer.

Unfortunately Richmond couldn't buy a bucket down the stretch, failing to make a field goal for the final nine minutes of the game--until a meaningless layup with 17 seconds remaining and Miami already up 61-55.

Solid season, very painful ending.

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Bartolo Colon clearly knows something the rest of the world doesn't

Yesterday, the New York Mets announced that Bartolo Colon will be their Opening Day starting pitcher.  In case you lost track, it's 2015.  Colon was washed up with the Red Sox in 2008.  At the time, he was 35 years old.

One of the very first blogs I ever wrote on this site was called "Bartolo Colon might not be dead?"  That was over four years ago, in March of 2011.  Two months later I accused Colon of being on steroids.  The season after that (2012) he was suspended for steroids.

Somehow he returned and became and All-Star in 2013.  The following offseason, Colon signed a two-year, $20 million deal with the Mets heading into 2014.

And now it's 2015, and Colon is starting the first game of the season.  He'll turn 42 years old in May.  The guy began to lose his fastball nine years ago, in 2006.  There's a 100 percent chance Colon discovered a drug nobody else knows about.  Or at the very least, something MLB hasn't figured out how to test for.

Monday, March 23, 2015's March Madness bracket format is terrible, right? What were they thinking?

When I take a quick look at a section of my NCAA tournament bracket (above), I somehow have absolutely no idea which teams I picked, how many I've gotten right, or even who I have in the Final Four.

How is that even possible?

If you look at it long enough eventually you figure it out, but I'm way too annoyed with it to explain the details.  It's pretty incredible that ESPN managed to take a very simple thing and make it super confusing.

Below is my bracket, which illustrates the obvious basic format used for every bracket ever in the history of time.

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Awesome Old Song of the Week: "99 Red Balloons" by Nena, an odd choice for a Coke commercial

In 1983, the German band Nena released a hit single called 99 Luftballons.  It was an anti-war protest song about children's balloons thought to be UFOs and shot down by pilots, which eventually leads to the start of a war.

An English version titled 99 Red Balloons came out shortly thereafter, with slightly different lyrics.  In this story a bunch of red ballons are mistaken for missiles by an early warning defense system, causing a nuclear war to break out.  Check out the song's Wikipedia page for a more in-depth explanation of each plot line.

Regardless, it's kind of a strange choice for this Coca-Cola commercial:

The song starts out nice and happy sounding, luckily for Coke they stopped it before getting to lyrics like (click here to see all of them):
Panic bells, it's red alert
There's something here from somewhere else
The war machine springs to life
It's all over and I'm standing pretty
In this dust that was a city
If I could find a souvenir
Just to prove the world was here
Funny how the ad says "Contains memories."  Hey, remember that time we destroyed the world for no reason?  Yeah, that was awesome...

Saturday, March 21, 2015

What all 30 NBA arenas are named after; and which ones are the worst?

There are just two NBA arenas who's naming rights haven't been given to corporate sponsors:
The Palace of Auburn Hills, owned by the Detroit Pistons, and Madison Square Garden (named for President James Madison), home of the New York Knicks.  Here are what the other 28 literally sold out to (I saved the worst for last):

Financial Institutions (6):
Bankers Life Fieldhouse - Indiana Pacers
Barclays Center - Brooklyn Nets
BMO Harris Bradley Center - Milwaukee Bucks (wins for the worst in the banking category)
Quicken Loans Arena - Cleveland Cavaliers
TD Garden - Boston Celtics
Wells Fargo Center - Philadelphia 76ers

Airlines (4):
Air Canada Centre - Toronto Raptors
American Airlines Arena - Miami Heat
American Airlines Center - Dallas Mavericks
United Center - Chicago Bulls

Phone/Cable Providers (3):
AT&T Center - San Antonio Spurs
Time Warner Cable Arena - Charlotte Hornets
Verizon Center - Washington Wizards

Heath Insurance Provider:
Moda Center - Portland Trail Blazers

Electronics Company:
Philips Arena - Atlanta Hawks

Computer Software Company:
Oracle Arena - Golden State Warriors

Car Company:
Toyota Center - Houston Rockets

Office Supply Store:
Staples Center - Los Angeles Lakers

Discount Retail Store:
Target Center - Minnesota Timberwolves

Household Products Pyramid Business Model Company:
Amway Center - Orlando Magic

Shipping Company:
FedExForum - Memphis Grizzlies

Oil and Gas Company:
Chesapeake Energy Arena - Oklahoma City Thunder

Nuclear Waste Disposal Company:
EnergySolutions Arena - Utah Jazz (wins for the company who's name sounds much better than what it does)

Soft Drink Company:
Pepsi Center - Denver Nuggets

Blended Fruit Drink Retailer:
Smoothie King Center - New Orleans Pelicans (wins for the most likely to confuse and disappoint young children as to where they are going)

Mattress Retailer:
Sleep Train Arena - Sacramento Kings (wins for opening itself up to obvious jokes about a perennially bad franchise's fans riding the sleep train while in attendance)

Casino Hotel:
Talking Stick Resort Arena - Phoenix Suns (wins for just being the dumbest overall)

And the answer to yesterday's movie trivia question isThe 40-Year-Old Virgin.

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