Wednesday, February 16, 2005

Some little known facts about your friend Duke

Actually, some of these are quite well known by readers of this site, but WTF. I need to update about something.

I used to mow L. Dennis Kozlowski's lawn!
Here's a pic of my old buddy.
Yup, for a total of 6 summers I worked on the Tyco International's groundskeeping crew. Of course we spent one day a week working on the grounds of Tyco's headquarters, the other 4 were spent working on the estates of the Tyco bigwigs. In all fairness to LDK, we only spent one day a week at his house. At the time I was there he was only the 2nd in command of Tyco. We spent two days a week at the 100 acre of estate of his predecessor. That guy had a farm with exotic animals. I spent many a miserable summer day shoveling shit filled with maggots, chasing donkey's around a paddock to get them in where the vet could clip their hooves, and getting spit on by angry llamas. Perhaps the creepiest thing was when a co-worker realized that if you got the boar pot-bellied pig excited by yelling his name in a friendly manner he would get a woody and eventually blow a load. I was forced to watch this procedure once, because none of us believed him. It was, in fact, true. The pig would blow his load eventually. God I wish I could forget about that. The other thing I wish I could forget was the twice a season job of going into the woods to cut back all the poison ivy. There was 'bout 4 acres of intense poison ivy that would grow up and cover their view to the ocean. So the 3 of us would don full fisherman rain gear and in 80 degree weather go out with weed whackers and cut down poison ivy for a total of 20 hours over two days. Once again, to be fair, this was not for L. Dennis. He was actually pretty cool to us. If he's guilty or not of the charges against him I can not say. But there are far worse rich people than him, believe me.

I was the third best long jumper in the State of NH in 1989
Yes indeed, I did get the third place trophy at the state track meet. It helped that you had to qualify for the state meet with a minimum jump that was fairly hard to get. And only three people, including myself, did so. So basically, I came in last in the state meet. And all three of us were white and would not have even been within 3 feet of the worst state qualifier in any other state besides Vermont. But I got the trophy!

I was the third best Axe Thrower in the North American Lumberjack Collegiate competition in 1990This was a legit title. I was on the UNH Lumberjack team, and in 1990 the North American Championships were held at the Univeristy of Maine. It was North American because there were teams from all over Canada there as well. To be honest, I think I could have won the whole thing if I had been an uptight asshole like the two finishers above me. You see, everyone in the competition besides myself had the professional style throwing axes. These are the axes that have the uber-curved double-bit heads, so that even if you fuck up, the axe will stick in the target. here is an example:
You can see the curved blade. Unfortunately, I still have my throwin axe, but while it is a double bit axe, it is flat on the top, so you have to throw it perfectly, or it will bounce off the target. I tried to take a picture but my camera battery is dead. But the other big difference was that my handle was 3.5 feet long, so I had less rotations to work with per throw as well. Basically, everyone thought I was a nut when I showed up with that axe. Actually they probably thought from the night before when me and Holmes were wasted and causing a scene the night before. It also didn't help that I was clearly drunk when I did the competition, little did they know however that I had also smoked a joint about 30 minuted before I threw. So, in a way, i DID win

Well that's enough for now. Tomorrow I will post a picture of Thor (my throwing axe) and share the story of my favorite axe ever, my good friend Cracky. The best splitting axe I ever came across. I once split 2 logs into perfect quarters (there was an inch wide dot painted on each log, I had to get 8 pieces with paint on them) in 5.8 seconds. It took four strokes. Oh man, Cracky I MISS you!

Wednesday, February 09, 2005

Superbowl and other crap

I clearly remember 1986 as being the salad days of all New England sports fans. In that year, the Boston Celtics won their 16th NBA Championship, the Boston Bruins made the Stanley Cup finals (and lost), the Red Sox made the World Series (and lost) and the New England Patriots made the Superbowl (and lost). Even though only one title out of a possible 4 was won, it was still a pretty incredible feat, something to never be surpassed. In fact, one of the Boston TV stations made an hour long show about that year, with all of the best clips from all 4 teams included. It was one of my parents favorite videos (as they taped the broadcast, it was never offered for sale). Then, in 1994 (or 95?) my parents were away so me and a few friends bailed from our shitty apartment to party in luxury in their house. We were drinking beers and remembering what it was like to be able to watch cable TV, when the news break came on. It was when OJ and AC were in their low speed chase away from the cops. Convinced that this was gonna end in a wondrous shoot out with OJ going down in a Pablo Escobar-like blaze of glory I grabbed for the nearest video to get it on tape. Much to my parents chagrin, it was their beloved tape of the 86 sports teams. They still havene't forgiven me a decade later.

But back to the point. In the last 12 months the Patriots have won two Superbowls, and the Red Sox have won the World Series. AND the Celtics are in 1st place in their division! (That last one was a joke, believe me). These are wondrous times up here. I love all the naysayers already writing off the Patriots because Coach Weis and Coach Crennel have moved on. I love both those guys and wish them the best. I have ALWAYS hated Notre Dame, but I will be rooting for them next year, just out of love for Weis. As long as they are willing to finish one spot back from my Sooners. I can't root for Cleveland though, but I hope they get a few AFC championship game losses to the Patriots.
So here is my Superbowl prediction for next year. Patriots versus Carolina Panthers, Pats win by 3 again. You heard it here first.

Now a quick paragraph as to why I didn't write anything before the game. First off, I was incredibly busy with shit. Secondly, I really didn't want to get into a war of words with Philly. You see I LIKE the city of Philly, and I think the Eagles are a very good team. I knew the Patriots were gonna win, but I wasn't going to lie and say crappy things about a city that I like pretty much better than any other in the US. I found it amusing that so many media outlets up here were complaining about the Philly fans who showed up in Jacksonville being drunken scumbags and incredibly rude etc. I mean, Philly and New England fans share that common bond! It just seemed worse down there because Philly fans outnumbered us by anywhere from 3-1 to 10-1 depending upon whom you believe. If this was the first Pats superbowl the ratio would have been more even and there would have been riots galore. I was hoping it would happen, but the blue collar Pats fans had already blown all their cash getting to the last 2 Superbowls, which explains why there were more Philly fans. I know that the Pats fans were causing all kinds of trouble by picking fights with Carolina and St. Louis fans the last two Superbowls. I'm disappointed that some media, and fans, had trouble taking what they dish out.

Enough of that

A friend of mine e-mailed me a column by Nelson Ascher that, while beyond a little paranoid I think, had some good points. His main thesis was that since the end of the cold war, hard-core socialists (communists) have, in their immense hatred of America, embraced anything that is anti-american, including radical Islam. And, instead of using one main theme to undermine captialism (which is what they really hate), they use, as Ascher says "Liliputian ropes". It IS a very interesting theory, and one that rings of truth.

Jesus I just deleted about 4 paragraphs before I realized it wasn't even worth it. I'll just leave it at the following bullet points:

* In case you haven't heard (which you probably haven't in the US media, because it would jeopradize their socialist leanings), Europe is in big trouble over the next 20 years. The very wondrous social programs the vast majority of the nations instituted in the 60's are on the verge of collapse. You see, all of these old people are living the good life, but now Europe's own baby-boomers are ready to cash in. Problem? There aren't enough young people to pay for them. And, since the high unemployment rates in countries like Germany and France (and the fact the French don't really want to work at all) a lot of people who were expecting a well deserved retirement aren't going to go get it. The EU is trying to fix this problem by letting in any country that wants in (hell they are considering TURKEY now) so they can have millions of more people to TAX to pay for it. But even that won't work in the short-term. I have TONS of friends in Europe and I love them all. But they are in for a major social change in their lifetimes, it's best to get prepared for it. Oh, and Canada, you had better keep letting in all of those immigrants who have ZERO interest in becoming Canadiens, they just want your jobs. It's the only way your programs will last as well. Although you'll die younger anyway, because although your health care is free, it's a lot more deadly than most modern nations. Just ask my friend who had to wait until she was six months along before she could get an appointment with an OBGYN.

* Does ANYONE out there realize why the United States won't sign the Kyoto accord? It's because CHINA is EXEMPT from it. Don't you understand that within 10 years, maybe 15, China will BLOW away any pollution that the USA and the USSR ever did combined? Have you heard about the rate of car ownership going up there exponentially every year. How they buy the vast majority of their trees for lumber from the US and Russia because they have already CUT ALL THEIR TREES DOWN?! Why would the US sign a treaty that is that one-sided? It's stupid! Of course why doesn't Bush come out in a national press conference and tell the people that? Another good question.

Ah, fuck it AGAIN! Here's some pictures from our visit to Portugal I never posted. And I'm sorry if I pissed off any of my Europena friends. I do love Europe, I just hate your leaders, just like many of you hate Bush. So we're even, OK?

Me, Mara and Anda getting ready to storm the castle. Actually we were eating poppy flowers trying to get stoned. I think. I dunno, Portuguese wine can be kinda strong when you've had about 6 bottles, in 3 hours.

This is a statue from the 15th century that, for some insane reason, was in the BAR of our hotel. This picture was taken just as the realization is hitting Mara's face that she had broken off one of the fingers. Seconds later we ran.

Here is a picture of Anda and I amazed that, even though we were 3500 miles away from home, this strange and distant land had kitty cats, just like we do here at home.