Thursday, July 30, 2015

Why Perfect Isn't Always Best

I have been married for nearly two years, and things have been great. I love my wife a whole bunch, and unless she's playing some sort of long-con, she loves me a whole bunch too. As I mentioned earlier this week, I am not my wife's type, but this also made me realize that my wife isn't really my type either. As a single guy, there is no way I would have described my wife's traits. This will surprise no one, but I would have given a very shallow and idiotic response if somebody asked me what I wanted in my future mate. The things I thought were important do not match up with my wife at all. Had I been asked to create a future wife in a lab, I would have messed it up so bad and probably would hate my creation within a week. Here are all of the characteristics my wife does not possess that single me thought were important.

Sense of Humor
A sense of humor is very important to me, as I fancy myself a fairly witty individual. My wife has a good sense of humor, but she does not find me funny. She doesn't laugh at my jokes, as she usually just rolls her eyes and calls me an idiot. I want that approval so bad, but she is very rare to give it out. She is far more entertained by me just saying and doing random things, which is a pretty nice thing. Still, as a single guy, I would have thought that I would have needed a girl who found everything I said to be hilarious (because it is), but I will admit it does feel good when what I say actually does make her laugh, as I crave that approval. Even when that happens, she is still quick to point out that I'm an idiot.

I'm not a tall guy (5'9"), so I definitely have a Napoleon complex in nearly all aspects of my life. This is what partially led me to train in mixed martial arts. I knew I couldn't be bigger, but I have always wanted to feel bigger. It seemed logical to find someone shorter than me so I could at least have a decent height advantage on my mate. I thought 5'6" was about max height I would go for. Instead, my wife is about half an inch shorter than me. I have a height advantage, but just barely. I did make sure that she wore flats for our wedding, so I could at least have a height advantage on my special day. I never thought I would end up with a lady that tall, but at least I have a chance of producing a child that is 6'0" tall.

I definitely thought I'd marry someone younger than me. That seems to be the traditional way of doing things, and it seemed good enough for me. Of course, the world is a-changin, and my wife is a year, a month, and a day older than me, so she's basically ancient. I never let her forget this fact.

Now don't get me wrong, my wife is a nice person. She cares about people and is unselfish, which is all well and good. However, I really wanted someone who would build up my incredibly high self-esteem. Instead, she is there to beat me back down to reality every chance she gets. It is very easy for me to get lost in my own cockiness, but she is there to remind me of any and every fault that I have. I really thought I would find a girl who was there to constantly be in awe of me, but it's probably best for the entire human population that I have someone to keep me in check.

Growing up, I thought that my woman would cook and clean (and yes, I thought of them as a possession at that time). My wife does the latter, but she did not come equipped with the former (she has made tremendous strides). But I'm actually kind of happy that I do the cooking. This means that I always eat what I want to eat. If I feel like steak tacos, I can have steak tacos. If I feel like ground turkey tacos, I can have ground turkey tacos. Chicken tacos? Yep, any time I want. I really like tacos, but I also like other stuff, so I can whip up a Chicky Chicky Parm Parm, a whole beef brisket, or deep fry some things for funsies. I want to eat what I want to eat, so by doing most of the cooking, I get to do that, and that is pretty awesome.

Party Girl
This was by far my dumbest inclination. I used to be young and dumb and figured I would want to get wasted every weekend, and my significant other should be ready for a life of hard partying. Now, I am way more into fitness and would rather not feel like shit in the morning. I am a special occasions drinker. If something big is going down, then I'll party hard, but if it's just a regular night out, I'll gladly be the designated driver. There is no beer in our house, because I don't really care for casual beers; water and milk are good by me. My wife does party more consistently than me, but we're pretty cool just hanging out with the dog and going out for non-drinking nights out. I know that sounds uncool, but it makes us happy, and I'm not too worried about living out what someone else thinks we should be doing. I'm glad my wife is a chill lady.

Now, I didn't want to be seduced, but I wanted to take pride in my ability to seduce my chosen target. This did not happen. I had to use the classic tight rope act of wearing my wife down without getting arrested for harassment. I walked that tight rope to perfection, but I wouldn't say she was ever seduced, more worn down with logic of letting her know, "Hey broad, we should be together." I would like my wife to be amazed at my charm and seduction skills, but I made it to the end goal, and that's all that really matters.


So I've tried to put a positive spin on the fact that my wife does not possess the qualities that I thought I wanted in my mate, but just in case that isn't clear, I wanted to point out that my wife is super awesome. I mean, she is totally, 100% out of my league. Also, she has the one attribute that I wanted above all else.

My wife makes me happy. Honestly, it's tough to point out specific characteristics about my wife that I love, because things don't stand out, it's just that I really have trouble finding fault in any of her actions. And that's what it comes down to. Being with her is easy. I don't have to try, but she still thinks I'm cool to be around, and I thoroughly enjoy our time together.

And that's the whole point of this. None of these qualities really matter. If somebody makes you happy, and they feel the same way about you, hold onto it. My life is better sharing it with someone that I really care about, and I got lucky and found someone who is dumb enough to genuinely care about me. That's really neat (Also, nothing wrong with being single and happy; it's way better than being with someone who doesn't make you happy). As always, just try to be happy and everything else will take care of itself.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

My Wife Has a Type, And It's Not Me

I came to a sad realization this week, as I finally had to admit that I am not my wife's type. What really hammered it home was my wife saying that "I did not see myself ending up with someone like you." That sounds bad, but that is the kind of brutal honesty that can only be had in a very stable relationship (or a relationship that is very close to ending, but I'm pretty sure we're the former).

The gentlemen she is interested in do not share commonalities with me. It's always the same type of guy that she likes, and it is literally the most boring combination imaginable. She likes tall, dark, and handsome. I definitely don't fit the first two traits. The third is at least debatable; I mean, there are many people who refer to me as Hott Joe to my face, but that may say more about them than it actually says about me. Oh, and the most important characteristic that she likes in other dudes, they must have absolutely no personality (and don't be a dick and say that I can at least fulfill that role for her).

This is never more true than when we watch The Bachelorette. She always favors the most generic looking dudes on the planet. Like, this season, it got down to the final three, and she liked the guy who nobody can remember. Does anybody even know that dude's name? I'll call him Billy. Seriously, if Billy just disappeared, would anyone have any questions? I'm not sure Billy didn't just join the show in like week six (By the way, my pick was Tanner, the only guy who actually stood up for the super drunk guy from the first episode, because, yeah, we've all gotten too drunk before. Also, he made jokes about how he couldn't believe he was still around, and I respect that sort of self-awareness). Can you name one thing Billy has done outside of being accused of being a virgin? No, because the only memorable thing about him was an interaction sparked by another person. He's as impactful as wallpaper, and that's the type of guy my wife digs.

Although the dudes she likes are good looking; they're not great looking. These fellas ain't Brad Pitt, and I think it bothers me way more that they are somewhat attainable. Like, if you're going to admit to your husband that you think another man is attractive, at least aim for the stars. Instead, she's aiming for a weekend getaway in Branson, Missouri.

Still, I put a ring on it; we've been married for almost two years, so she's basically stuck with me at this point. Oh, and to be fair, she's not my type either, but we'll get into that next time.

Monday, July 27, 2015

Tough Enough Is Hot Garbage, And I Can't Stop Watching It

I have watched every episode of Tough Enough this season. I don't know why I have done this, because this show is hot garbage. They manage to not do anything well. Somehow no group of people have really come across as likable or interesting in this show. And yet I watch week after week. I am an idiot. I understand that I like pro wrestling, but I don't like pro wrestling enough to justify this. This is awful. But I may as well get a blog post out of it and break down each group of people, and point out who is the worst of the worst, and, even though it is not anything to hang your hat on, who sucks the least.

The Hosts
Worst of the Worst - Chris Jericho
This hurts, because I am a devoted Jerichoholic. Chris Jericho will probably forever be one of my five favorite wrestlers of all time. His best was as good as anybody's in sports entertainment. But man, he makes me very uncomfortable as a host. Everything just seems forced with him, and he rarely looks comfortable. If he isn't forcing himself into tight clothing, he is trying to force a smile, and neither looks like an enjoyable experience. Jericho is a natural entertainer, but he is proof that hosting is not as easy as it looks.

Best of the Worst - Renee Young
Renee Young actually does a nice job with things, but this show doesn't need a whole lot of hosting, so having two hosts is pretty dumb. I would lean towards keeping Renee since she's much more natural, and she made me laugh pretty hard when she gave the Gabi the side-eye after she got eliminated. 

The Judges
Worst of the Worst - Hulk Hogan
(Note: I actually wrote this a day before the controversy from late last week, and compared to that, Tough Enough has not even made a dent in his legacy, but I don't want to get into anything that important in what is essentially just my stupid thoughts on a crappy reality show. The silver lining of all of this is that he's no longer going to be a judge, so, yay?)
This is why this show is such garbage. It makes the wrestlers I loved growing up seem way less likable. Hulk tries to do the damn yes chant every time Daniel Bryan is introduced, and in his mind, he probably thinks he's putting over Bryan, but he's that old guy who is still trying to act cool instead of realizing it's way cooler to just understand that you're an adult so you don't have to worry about acting cool anymore. Childhood Me loves you, Hulk Hogan, but to ensure that love, I'd like to see you less.

Best of the Worst - Daniel Bryan
Compared to most people, I am not that big of a Daniel Bryan fan. I like him; but I don't see him as the greatest pro wrestling thing that has ever come into existence, so that puts me in the minority. Still, the guy is incredibly likable, and as Enzo Amore would say, "Ya can't teach that." He's definitely the most consistently good thing about the show, and he was part of my favorite moment of the season, but we'll get to that later.

The Ladies
Worst of the Worst - Gabi
Gabi didn't know what a promo was, so she did terrible in that challenge (Warning: This is painful to watch). 

Then she never learned what a promo was after that. At least she got cut.

Best of the Worst - Amanda
I know everyone would expect me to say Sara Lee, but I'm not going to. Sara Lee hasn't really shown much of anything, but she has a couple things going for her. She seems nice, and she's just plain enough that the average wrestling fan thinks they have a shot with her, even though she is way, way too hot for the average wrestling fan. Amanda is probably the best looking one left, and she has done pretty well in most challenges, so she deserves to go far, but she'll be ousted the first time they put her in the bottom three.

The Dudes
Worst of the Worst - ZZ
You can be a fat guy and be a successful professional wrestler, but the fat guys who succeed aren't just random fat guys with some good luck. They're athletes, and their cardio is off the charts. ZZ does not have this going for him as he consistently gets blown out in every physical challenge and doesn't have much of a concept of what a pro wrestler is, and I don't think the WWE needs a Eugene character without any wrestling ability. ZZ is just a fat guy who is out of shape and just wants to make children smile. He would make an ideal Mall Santa.

Best of the Worst - Tanner
In any competition that is not MMA, I will always root for the MMA guy, so Tanner was my guy from the start. I knew he would destroy people in anything involving cardio, and he has done that. Not only that, he destroyed the police in a course that they had trained to excel in. Most importantly, he realized that he's not the most dynamic character, so instead of trying to develop charisma, he's just trying to hit on the ladies of the house. Also, his actions led to the best moment of the show when he basically tricked Chelsea into kissing him. The judges reaction was important as Paige and Hulk were rambling about how it was awkward, weak, and he had no game. Finally, Daniel Bryan, the voice of reason, finally pipes in, and says, "I thought it was pretty smooth...he got the kiss." Was it a total scumbag maneuver? Of course it was, but nobody got hurt, so it worked. It was a smooth move, and I'm glad Daniel Bryan pointed that out.

As you can see, this show is not good. Even some of the bests only get half-hearted praise, because the show is pretty half-hearted in its delivery. It's really an awful show, and yes, I will continue to watch.

Thursday, July 23, 2015

What Are The Best Ages For Your Favorite Team To Win A Championship?

The Effectively Wild podcast had an interesting conversation a couple weeks ago. The situation is this: Your (possibly hypothetical, as in my case) child's favorite team will win three, and only three, championships in his/her lifetime. What ages would you want them to experience those championships? It really got me thinking as there are a lot of benefits for nearly any age and winning a championship. Still, I feel like the following ages (consider the ages approximate as there isn't much difference between 45 and 47) would be the best three years to get that title.

1. Age 11
You need to get a championship during their formative years, but at the same time, you don't want it to be too young of an age. The Bulls won their first title when I was just six, and it didn't mean as much when they were winning those titles, because it became expected. It was still great, but I feel it could have been greater. Also, the Cubs had a good year when I was five, but I don't remember it. Meanwhile, they had another good year when I was 14, and I cried when they got eliminated from the playoffs by the Braves. Is 14 a little old to be crying about sports? Well, it was either cry about sports or have sex with girls, and I had zero interest in the latter. That is why I feel that age 11 is a good balance. I think everybody finds loving sports way too much totally acceptable at that age, and it is late enough that you can fully remember and enjoy the experience.

2. Age 45
This is an approximate age, but it gives a chance for your child to share a championship with his or her child. I mean, once you're an adult, you're probably not getting the same sort of joy out of a championship, but sharing it with a child would probably be pretty boss. The first one is a no-brainer, and I feel like this is a necessity if they are going to have children. Obviously, without children, it loses some luster, but that probably still means that the kid is drinking heavily and can still enjoy a championship even slightly past his or her prime.

3. Age 25
There is something to be said for 70 years old as you can share it with two other generations, but at that age, you really cannot care too much about sports. At that age, health can become a major issue, so I just don't see the risk outweighing the reward. Meanwhile, 25 is that sweet spot for sports fandom. You are young enough to still care way too much about sports and not have too many other responsibilities, but you are old enough where you could actually afford to go all out in your enjoyment. I mean, if you are ever going to make a random trip to see your team in the championship, this is the right time to do it. There isn't a significant other and kids holding you back, and it won't be that hard for you to convince a couple buddies to join along in the adventure.

You may get more nostalgic about the other titles, but this will be the one that you'll have the most vivid memories, and that is why it has to be the third age that you would want your child to experience that championship feeling. 

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

The Trivago Guy Would Like To Have Sex With You

This is something that has been on my mind for a while, and I'm guessing that this has been on your mind as well, as how the hell can you not think about the Trivago guy? He wants what is best for you, for you to get the best hotel deal around, but does anyone think that this man has no ulterior motives? I mean, come on, the Trivago guy is clearly trying to have sex with you. And if you feel as if the "you" I am referring to cannot possibly refer to you, well, guess what? You're wrong, the Trivago guy loves sex, and he will sex you while getting you an excellent deal on a hotel.

The Trivago guy is known for great deals on hotels, but even more well known is that he has that smoky voice and seems to be a little too fit for a guy his age. Speaking of that, you could convince me his age was anywhere from 18-75. The question then becomes, does Trivago make you look old, or does Trivago keep you young? Is the Trivago Guy immortal? As you're contemplating these questions, this silver fox is plotting, as he tries to find a way into your pants.

The one thing you won't notice in his online dating profile is his height. I mean, are we sure he's not a little person?
Like, you assume that his shirt is just a little big, and his legs look just a little short. But can we be certain that the shirt isn't just a polo that drapes over his tiny body? Are those jeans or Extra Small Capris? Those shoes are a size 5 tops. He seemed nice looking in his online dating profile, and he did get you a really great deal on your hotel, so you give him some more time to impress you when you see this.
I mean, yeah, that is as derpy of a face as possible, but that is just the next step in his plan, ensuring that you underestimate him. Never underestimate Trivago Guy or the great deals you will get on his website. And are all those numbers even necessary? That's a lot of numbers, it looks like at least 30 different numbers up there. So numbery and confusing. Oh no, I'm fading fast...

Don't worry folks. That was just a dramatic interpretation of what could happen, as The Trivago Guy is passionate about trying to have sex with you, but he's still more passionate about making it easy for you to find great deals on hotels.

Trivago: Great for hotels, Awful for Abstinence.

Monday, July 20, 2015

1996 Lex Luger Was One of the Greatest Wrestlers Ever

One thing that never stops astonishing me is how great pro wrestling was. i just kind of assumed that I was a dumb kid who was easily amused. This is actually also true, but looking back on things, there were so many guys doing great things that I did not pick up on when watching it the first time around. Lex Luger is an excellent example of this as he is basically just remembered as just a muscled-up dude who was only important because he was the only muscled-up dude WCW had. He had a good look but offered nothing else. That is definitely not the case.

I think this is partly because of The Narcissist and Lex Express era in WWE when he never really was able to build momentum, although winning the 1993 Body Slam Challenge is a legendary accomplishment that still holds up today.

Still, instead of getting him a win over Yokozuna, they found some convoluted way to instead get the belt on Bret Hart while letting Lex Luger slowly fade away.

It looked like WCW was going to use him in the same way as he debuted on the first episode of Nitro and made an impact by...standing there?

Yeah, he just stood there. I guess he kind of looked around a little bit. It kind of took away from the impact when he did finally do something in protecting Hulk Hogan from the Dungeon of Doom. Then, he challenged Hogan, lost without ever having a real chance at winning.

But then something amazing happened. Lex Luger became the most inexplicable member of the Dungeon of Doom. This sounds terrible, but it actually led to the best stretch of Lex's career. He never really split from the Dungeon, but they kind of faded away from each other. Still, Lex Luger played the gutlees heel to perfection. There is no moment that better exemplifies this than this interview with him and Sting interacting with The Road Warriors. Everything Lex Luger says here is amazing.

Quickly, here are the four best things about Lex Luger this interaction.
4. "Stinger, tell 'em I'm from Chicago."
3. When the Road Warriors come out, Luger immediately gets behind Sting.
2. "If you want a Chicago Street Fight, you got it...what is a Chicago Street Fight anyway?"
1. "We'll pro wrestle you anywhere, anytime."

We'll pro wrestle you anywhere, anytime. We' Every word is perfect. I will never stop laughing about that sentence. I would divorce my wife and marry that sentence. This may be one of the ten best promos of all time.

One time, he missed out on a title shot, because he got stuck in traffic and couldn't make it to the arena on time. He got another title shot the next week, so he camped outside the arena the night before to make sure he wouldn't miss it again.
He still lost, but at least he had plenty of potassium.

Still, that Lex Luger was putting together things like this and was still somewhat involved with the Dungeon of Doom sucked some ass, not any fault of Luger's though. I mean, just look at what he does during Road Block's Monday Nitro debut.

Luger did get him up on the third try, but I have a feeling he would have kept dangerously dropping the poor guy and shrugging his shoulders all night long if he had to.

Somehow, 1996 Lex Luger fulfilled all of the potential that one would assume when first looking at the guy. He always had the look, but he finally combined a perfectly realized character along with a hilarious worker who endangered jobbers for the entertainment of the fans. 1996 Lex Luger, you truly were The Total Package.

Thursday, July 16, 2015

My First MLS Game

I went to my first MLS game this past weekend as Orlando City SC took on FC Dallas. This writing is probably the first time I have actually gotten the team names correct. So, as you could probably guess, I am not much of a soccer fan.

Even though I'm not a soccer fan, I am enough of a sports fan that I have at least enough knowledge to carry on a conversation about the sport. Because of my limited knowledge about soccer, I decided to look up the rosters of the two teams to see how many guys I knew. The answer was one. Kaka was on Orlando City, and I only knew him from my days of playing FIFA 2002. I remember Kaka being awesome, so I was pretty excited to see him play. Of course, I found out when we got there that he had a red card in the previous game, so he wouldn't be playing. You really dropped the ball on that one, soccer.

Still, there are good things about attending a soccer matchup. The best thing about soccer is the size of the players. As someone who stands just 5'9", I enjoy that I can relate to players who are actually my size. Also, since soccer isn't a real sport, their total lack of athleticism also makes them easier to relate to...just kidding soccer fans. They are real athletes, as was evident from this 5'4" guy on Dallas who was quick as shit. With a guy that small and that quick, I decided that he was my favorite player, so congratulations on that Michael Barrios.

But to me, soccer is a game of almost-exciting moments. You'll see a guy streaking down the field with the ball, but he won't be able to get the ball centered in any meaningful way, so there isn't really any legitimate shot at a goal. You'll see a big pass down the field that gets intercepted by the defense and slowly moved in the opposite direction. There are the occasional moments that lead to shots on goal, but those are almost always missed, so you're left waiting for a climax.

Basically what I'm saying is soccer is the sports world's version of soaking. There's nothing wrong with that, but since I am an adult, I have a finite time for sports, and soccer just isn't going to make the cut for me. Still, it was a fine experience, and I would recommend giving it a try. It's a good chance to get outside and soak in the sun; just don't count on climaxing.

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

How Good Is Conor McGregor?

I am a Conor McGregor hater. I think the term is relative, but it seems that if you don't love Conor McGregor, you are deemed to be one of his haters. I can admit I was more of a hater in the past, as I thought he was a well-protected fighter who found the right style matchups to help him keep moving up the ladder, but after his last few fights, I had to give the guy some credit, as he's incredibly compelling to watch. Still, I thought Jose Aldo would smash him when that fight was announced, and I thought Chad Mendes was an even worse matchup for McGregor when he was brought in as a replacement.

And McGregor proved me wrong.

Good for him. He's super good, and although he talks a lot of shit, people who are around him seem to think he's a good dude. Does he seem like a sociopath? Of course he does, but it takes a very special person to rise to greatness without being a little mentally off. Michael Jordan was a sociopath, and his career turned out just fine.

Coming into the fight I wondered how good Conor McGregor was. After the fight, I still find myself asking: How good is Conor McGregor?

After watching that fight, you could come to so many conclusions. If you're a fan, you could say that McGregor proved that he can handle good wrestlers. A hater could just as easily say that he has shit takedown defense, and had Mendes not gassed super early, it could have been a very painful night for McGregor. Even with his striking, I think we can all agree that it is elite, but he got hit by some heavy shots from Mendes, and can he really count on his chin to absorb that much punishment without his lights going out? I really don't know.

The one thing that nobody can take away is McGregor is so smooth on his feet. I honestly think he is as smooth of a striker as anyone outside of prime-Anderson Silva. Now, I won't say that he's the best striker, as I think there are other guys who are more effective, and one of those guys is Jose Aldo. What Aldo lacks in smoothness (which isn't much), he more than makes up for in pure violence. Also, as I mentioned earlier, the hands down striking works well against guys who are not on your level as strikers, but Aldo can turn somebody's lights out with one mistake, as he has proven on many occasions.

So how good is Conor McGregor? Unfortunately, I don't really know if I learned much of anything about McGregor in that fight. He solidified his spot in the top-5 featherweights, but is he the best? It's impossible to say until he fights Jose Aldo, and that is why that fight will be one of the biggest in UFC history.

Monday, July 13, 2015

Date Night at NXT Largo

I've got a good thing going with my wife where I can count going to NXT shows as date nights. She still isn't a big wrestling fan, but her interest is growing. Also, I think she has street cred with the Internet Wrestling Community as she is a bigger fan of NXT than the main roster. We recently moved, and maybe the best thing about the new place is we are eight minutes from the Minnreg Hall which hosts NXT house shows about once a month.

First off, Minnreg Hall is pretty awesome. They have a full blown concession stand with a kitchen to cook you up something fresh. Amazingly, they not only sell beer, but they are whipping up mixed drinks as well. Since I am the oldest 30 year-old around, I was not prepared for drinking, so I got two waters and unlimited popcorn for the hefty price of $3. Yeah, it's cheap as shit. Also, tickets are $10, and it's so small that the furthest back you can be is row 8. It's really fantastic.

As for the actual wrestling show, these were a few of the highlights.

First off, Elias Samson came out and has a gimmick of "arrogant acoustic guitar guy." I'm super into that idea, because anyone who went to college is super familiar with this guy, and he is THE WORST. I think every single person has had their game thwarted by some asshole who just wants to jam out and play girl's favorite songs. Congratulations dude, you know Wonderwall, now get the fuck outta here; I'm trying to get laid. Anyway, Samson used his acoustic guitar to talk shit about Largo, and then call out his opponent. I was convinced that this match was to get Samson over, but unfortunately, that opponent he called out was Uhaa Nation who is stupidly talented and can do things like this:
Since it was the first match of the night, they wrestled a pretty safe match, but the athleticism was easy to see, and even my wife added Uhaa Nation to her list of favorite wrestlers.

In the next match, Cassie and Jessie took on Gionna and Lina. The first three girls seem to be fairly similar to what you would expect Divas to be. Lina, on the other hand, is huge. Like, she is almost as big as her cousin, Dwayne. Yes, I am referring to Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson. Anyway, she just kind of dropped people and was bigger than them, so I didn't see much in the way of wrestling, but I think worst case is that she's a way more legit looking version of Tamina.

Mike Rallis vs. Angelo Dawkins was the most nothing match possible.

Scott Dawson and Dash Wilder took on Jason Jordan and Chad Gable. Despite not having great size, I think Gable has the most potential in the group. He has a natural charisma, and even though nobody is really showcasing their skills, Gable was very smooth in the ring, and I will always root for the guys with amateur wrestling backgrounds.

The other thing that stood out to me during this match was some 8-year-old kid chanting chickenhead at someone in this match. I'm not even sure who it was directed at, but he called all of them chickenheads. I doubt the kid knows the most common meaning of that, but I laughed pretty hard that he yelled it.

Bull Dempsey beat Tyler Breeze. I just feel like that should be pointed out, but the most important thing is they are entertaining crowds. They're doing comedy wrestling, which is not an area WWE usually does well in, but they did a good job of balancing comedy with it still making sense as a wrestling match.

Solomon Crowe took on Baron Corbin in a matchup of guys that are spinning their wheels. Crowe has more crowd support, but Corbin definitely has the greater potential of success and has gotten the far bigger push thus far. Overall, the match was fine, but they did not make a believer out of my wife.

Preston Cunningham Jr. The First came out dressed like a rich idiot and said his Dad financed the show. I thought he was a bad guy, but then former NFL safety, Sabby Piscitelli came out, and it turned out that Sabby was the bad guy, because he insulted Largo, and that is the ultimate offense for a wrestler. It was honestly very revealing in how hard it is to portray an unknown character to an audience. It takes a lot of work, and these guys have a long ways to go, but just getting in reps, seeing what works and what doesn't is important in and out of the ring.

Sasha took on Carmella, and it is fairly clear that these two are on different levels right now. Sasha has her wrestling down, as she's just compelling to watch in everything that she does. Carmella is just trying to hang in there. Sasha Banks is amazing, and I would watch her wrestle anybody right now and be fully entertained.

They ended with a Triple Threat Tag match with Blake & Murphy, Enzo and Big Cass, and The Vaudevillains squaring off. It was a good match to end on as it was just a fun match. The bad guys won, but then the good guys hit them with all of their finishers after the match to send the crowd home happy.

Overall, NXT is about the best way to spend $10 for a night of entertainment. The card went about 2.5 hours, and had I gotten there earlier, I could have gotten pictures and autographs from Mojo Rawley, Dana Brooke, and Tyler Breeze. I'm still holding out for personal hero, Norman Smiley, but that'll have to wait for another day.

Oh, and NXT is so awesome that you can use it as a date night and have your significant other entertained even if they couldn't give two shits about pro wrestling. That's quality right there.

Thursday, July 9, 2015

The Saga of the Jaime Garcia Trade

Jaime Garcia is one of the most interesting players in baseball. He somehow inspires very strong opinions, despite there not being much to base these strong opinions on. All of the Cardinals fans I know LOVE him to a point that is completely unreasonable. Like, yeah, they'd rather keep Wainwright than Garcia, but they'd have to think about it. He is this player who can flash something special, but has never done it for very long, and, oh yeah, he hasn't had a healthy season since 2011.

I am not a Cardinals fan. In fact, I believe, like most of the sane universe that Cardinals fans are the absolute worse fans in all of baseball (they are tied for last with the other 29 teams, because all fans are the same; they are all equally the worst), but Jaime still has a special place in my heart. Last year, I was able to take advantage of a Cardinals fan's irrational love for Garcia. I offered him Garcia for Pablo Sandoval since my 3B situation was a little shaky. He said he still needed to get a third baseman, so I used my knowledge of his Cardinals fandom, picked up David Freese, paired him with Garcia to get the Kung-Fu Panda. Freese struggled all year, and Garcia got hurt a couple weeks later. Meanwhile, Sandoval started crushing the ball right after I acquired him and helped me get a second place finish last year.

With those memories in my head, I kept track of Garcia's rehab progress and picked him up before his first start. He did not disappoint, as he had maybe his best stretch of pitching in his career to start out his season this year. After four starts, I decided it was time to sell, as I know Garcia, and he is a ticking time bomb ready to explode at any moment.

Since he was a top-10 pitcher since coming off the disabled list, I thought I should aim high. After numerous people told me to go fuck myself for my trade offers, I knew it was time to slightly lower my sights in a trade return. I talked to another Cardinals fan in the league about a straight swap of Garcia for Gio Gonzalez. He said he was interested, but he thought he was going to get a fourth round basketball pick for him, but if that fell through, he would make the trade with me.

I waited patiently, as I didn't think there was a chance he was going to get that sort of haul for Gio, and Garcia continued to dominate, so everything was looking good. Unfortunately, his team was hit by a string of injuries, and now he was looking for outfielders in any trade he made. I assured him that Garcia could play outfield at any moment, but he was unconvinced, and it was time to move on.

Right before his seventh start, I offered him up for Yasmani Grandal and a fifth round pick in a sport of his choosing. The guy accepted, but when I asked him which sport he wanted to trade the pick in, he said he didn't actually read the trade proposal and just thought it was a straight up swap of players. Now, I secretly love Yasmani Grandal, but I don't need him, so I was just hoping to get him as a throw in on the deal. But the guy had no interest in trading a pick, so all he did was waste my time on that trade offer since he doesn't know how to read.

Still, I was working the lines after his seventh start and was close to getting a fifth rounder from someone else, but they wanted an eighth rounder in return. Not ideal, but it was a solid bump up in the basketball draft, so it was worth it. The deal was good to go, but there was a slight groin issue from Garcia that my trade partner wanted to wait on. I had no worries, as he had only given up one run in his last three starts, so there were no signs of a decline.

Every morning, I waited to see the news that he would make his next start. Nothing. I started checking nights and mornings. Nothing. Finally, it was said that his next start would be delayed. Then he got totally skipped in the rotation.

The trade was off at this point, but I kept checking. He got pushed back yet again, but would not hit the disabled list with his groin injury. Then, finally, I saw this come across the news wire:

Jaime Garcia (shoulder) has been placed on the 15-day disabled list.

God damnit. A shoulder injury? There are only two possible explanations. Either they massaged his groin so hard he threw out his shoulder, or he kept saying his shoulder was sore, but the pervy Cardinals trainer just wanted to massage groins all day and convinced him that it would help. I'm leaning towards the latter, and I fully believe that a simple ice pack for his shoulder after his last start would have kept him healthy.

And by healthy, I mean healthy enough for me to trade him, as he probably had a maximum of three starts left in him before his body caved in like it does every year.

So I've got Jaime Garcia chilling on my disabled list for who knows how long. Anybody want to trade for him?

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Supercuts Is The Place To Be

I ain't no fancy boy who needs high-priced haircuts from a hair stylist. I need a cheap place to get a trim. Finger-length on top, three on the sides. I've been going with that style for a while, and although it isn't eye-catching, it is inoffensive, which, as a married adult, is all I really need. Hence, I go to the nearest place that I think will be cheap. A Supercuts seemed like a wise choice; I had no idea how great of a decision this would be.

The lady who is cutting my hair (I'm not sure if she's a hair stylist, barber, or some newfangled term I haven't heard of) is chatting with me and was wondering if I was doing anything special with my day. I told her that I was just going to be hanging with the dog, and I mentioned that I have a weimaraner. This got another lady barber to pipe in, "Oh my God, those are beautiful dogs." She went into great details about all of their best characteristics to the point that she seemed to at least considered the idea of a physical relationship with one. She then goes into how her best friend has one, and how it has such a great personality. Then the following exchange happens:

Lady: The only problem is that the dog liked to jump the fence.
Me: Oh, that's too bad.
Lady: Yeah, and then it got hit by a car.
(Stunned silence)
Me: I'm sorry.
Lady: The dog lived though.
Me: Oh, that's good.
Lady: But the vet bills were $350, and my friend didn't have that, so the vets kept the dog.
Me: That's...tough.
Lady: But at least the dog has plenty of room to run now (Lady walks away).
My Lady Barber: That was an awful story.
Me: (still in stunned silence)

And the fun didn't stop there. After that, another hair stylist came in, and after a little small talk, she drops the bomb of, "Well, I'm getting sued for $100,000." That certainly wouldn't be a casual thing for me, but she took it in stride. She then explained that it was from when she got in a car accident where she hit another car, but it shouldn't have been her fault, because the other person wanted to get in a car accident. How does that work? I have no clue, but she claimed the lady was working to get hit by her car, but the hair stylist lady still obliged and hit her, so not the best decision on her part. Anyway, the medical things this lady who loves car accidents aren't even from the accident, so the hair stylist should get out of this lawsuit.

It takes me about 10 minutes to get a haircut, and somehow they managed to squeeze in yet another insane story. After hearing about the other hair stylist's legal issues, my hair stylist admitted that her uncle was being sued for being involved in a drunk driving incident.

Let me just tell you that you have no idea where this story is going to go next.

Not only was her uncle not the drunk driver, he was actually the victim of the incident. On top of this, her uncle died in the car accident, so the drunk driver is suing the dead uncle for PTSD, because he's been really messed up since killing that dude when he was drunk.


So, yeah, Supercuts is definitely the place to be.

Monday, July 6, 2015

It's Time, It's Time, It's Vader Workout Time

Let me just start by saying that Vader is one of my favorite wrestlers of all-time. He was so awesome in WCW, and it always blew my mind that the WWE was never able to utilize a big strong dude who could do just about anything athletically. His physique wasn't perfect, but it didn't have to be with his wrestling style. The guy was a monster. As I was going through the years on the WWE Network, I came across his introductory vignette, and it's all pretty awesome. Take a look.

Shadow boxing? Check.
Backflips? Check.
Heavy bag work? Check.
Curls? Check.
Pullups? Check.
Military press? Check.
Power cleans? Check.
All of those things are great, but nothing is as great as this.
Yeah, that's Vader, in what appears to be his mask, a tanktop, and diaper, on a bike while he does lat raises like nobody's business. That is some next level shit right there. This dude is working out so hard that he is worried he may shit his pants. You know he didn't learn that lesson the easy way.

Some people try to work so hard they puke. Others try to work out so hard that they pass out. Both of these groups rarely reach those levels. Vader works out until he shits himself, and he reaches that point Every. Single. Time.

It truly gives Vader Bomb a whole new meaning.

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Planet Fitness and the Hypocrisy of the Judgment Free Zone

I am moving, so I recently ended my gym membership. That membership was to a Planet Fitness. Many people like Planet Fitness, because it is $10 a month. Outside of that, there isn't much that stands about it in the positive sense. For me, it was less than a mile away, but I don't think they can guarantee that for all members. Still, the rules of Planet Fitness are the biggest bunch of hypocrisy in the fitness industry, and that's saying something.

Planet Fitness claims to be a "Judgment Free Zone." The whole reason of going to the gym is to judge others. I mean, yeah, you want to improve your own health, but let's be real here; you're only going to the gym to look and feel better so you can feel superior to all the average frustrated chumps out there. There is not a single person that I don't judge in the gym. The guy that weighs 50 pounds more than me and lifts 50 pounds less? Yeah, he's getting judged. The gal who is talking with her friend between sets instead of getting to work? Judged. Old ladies? Judged. Children? Judged. They are all judged in comparison to me, and not a single one measures up.

I realize this makes me an asshole when I go to the gym, but when I leave the gym, I can turn back into a fully-functioning adult. Planet Fitness tries to be high and mighty with their "Judgment Free Zone," but they are just as judgmental as me; they just add hypocrisy on top of it. Just look at this shit.
This sign is as judgmental as any sign that has ever existed. They even added an alarm to draw attention to their judgments and whether you fit in with what they have decided people should behave like at the gym. And this is not a gym etiquette thing where a patron is hurting others with their behavior; this could just be a guy trying to maximize his time in the gym. Nothing wrong with that. But let's break down everything that is judgmental about this sign:

Well, that's a derogatory term for anyone. I don't think anyone wants to be a lunk, and name-calling sure seems judgmental. On the bright side, it is only one letter away from being a hunk, and that is a group that I have been a proud card-carrying member since birth. But is being a lunk enough to be called out, even by PF's own definition? I certainly think not. Here are their "crimes."

Seriously? Sometimes you push yourself and you need to expel a little air in an intense matter. I feel like they would also frown upon you expelling air from another end, but that is something that I do with no remorse at the gym as well. If you've gotta fart, you can either hold it in and not get a good pump, or you can let it fly while gaining size.

Drops Weights
Now dropping weights is definitely a bad thing to do in the gym, but I see this happen far more often with people who don't know what they are doing than with so-called lunks. I'm all for idiots not being allowed in gyms, but this still seems awfully judgmental to me.

Wait, what? I'm only halfway through this sign, and literally the only thing that it preaches is to judge people who work out differently than your prescribed version of "normal." You literally created an alarm to draw attention to your judgments and shame those who do not fit your preconceived notion of what an acceptable workout is.

Rick, it rhymes with Dick. Very clever, Planet Fitness. Still, this disparages Ravishing Rick Rude, and I just can't stand for that. 

Slamming His Weights
Slightly worse than dropping weights, which we have already discussed.

Wearing a bodybuilding tanktop
Do I find bodybuilding tanktops ridiculous? Of course I do, but that doesn't mean I don't support them, as I also find them hilarious. Nobody needs any more specialized gear beyond shoes, shorts, and shirt, and if you think you do, you're likely a moron. If you can manage to lift heavy weights, you can probably manage to lift the fabric of a t-shirt as well. Still, people wear all kinds of stupid shit to the gym, and I find it far less awkward to see somebody wearing a tanktop than I do when somebody comes cruising in with a big gulp and a pair of jeans.

Drinking out of a gallon water jug
Really? Is this worth taking a stand on? To judge someone for taking an extra step in staying hydrated? As long as they don't leave their water jug on equipment to prevent people from using them, I really can't find much fault with someone drinking a proper amount of water during their workout, and I feel like you'd have to be kind of a judgmental asshole to think otherwise.

And this is just one sign that hangs in a place that claims to be a "judgment free zone." It's not about being free of judgment. It's about being free of judgment as long as you conform to what they have determined to be "normal people" gym behavior. There are many dictators who have had similar beliefs. Planet Fitness has created a safe gym environment for its members, that is, as long as you're not a Lunk.