That's right. This is trademarked now, and even if you've seen it somewhere else before I used it, I still trademark it. This isn't the real world. This is cyberspace, and if cyberspace is anything like real space, then I just put my flag on the moon. It's my moon now, and it's also a space station.
- If you were like me, then you spent part of your Sunday watching the US Women's Nation Team struggle to put Japan away to the point where Japan ended up putting them away. I, like a lot of other people, became kind of swept up in the fervor that the Women's World Cup had been able to generate (mostly because of what our very own Team USA had been able to accomplish in terms of high drama against Brazil the week before), and became a soccer fan for a week. I imagine this happens a lot during World Cup years, much like how people become fans of things like swimming and rowing during Olympic years. One thing I decided for certain this week though, is that I like Women's soccer way more than I like Men's soccer. Anybody on here who is actually a fan of the Men's game will no doubt bristle whenever I give my explanation here shortly, but the fact is and will remain to be that I'm right, and there's nothing you can do about it. The women are tougher than the men are. I don't know of any other sport where this is the case, but it's an actual certainty when soccer is the sport in question. When I turn on a Men's game (usually during a world cup year, or via casual channel surfing), I'm treated to such a display of flopping as to make Vlade Divac and Anderson Varejao blush. Anybody here is free to go on and on about how it's "part of the game", but if it is, it's also stupid. I caught a few of the Women's games over the week, and while it's definitely something that occurs throughout their ranks, it actually happens less. A lot less. To wit, the worst example of it I saw was during the USA/Brazil match when Erika decided to flop five seconds after contact to such a degree that a stretcher was actually brought out onto the field. After being carted halfway off the field, she hopped back up as if nothing had ever happened (perhaps begotten from the guilty conscience of a true gamer...) and play then continued. If something like that didn't happen in almost every Men's game I've ever caught, then I wouldn't make this assertion, but it does so I am. I won't even get into the fact that there really isn't a noticeable drop in athleticism from the Men's to Women's game, because the fact that the women play harder is the only thing I need to know. I'm not like Jim Rome, where I'll hate soccer simply so I can make a scene and rack up record amounts of dead air while I think of new metaphors to describe how much I hate it. I appreciate soccer, and respect the skill of the athletes, but I find the game cheapened by how often it occurs on the Men's side of the sport. I get it, and I know why it's done, but it happens too much on the manly side of things, and I can't abide it. I don't know if it happens less in the Women's game because they're out to prove they can play every bit as well as the guys can (of this there can be little doubt, or if they simply just don't care, but whatever the case is I can announce that I'm a hell of a lot bigger fan of them than I am of the guys.
- Charles Barkley, ever the voice of reason, was interrupted during a round of golf for long enough to provide ESPN with a video clip in which he reveals his opinion that the NBA will lose the entire season. While I hope that's not case, I've already found myself in such a position where I'm honestly just over this whole "lockout" thing. I realize I'm definitely in the minority here, but I'm at the point where I'm not going to waste any energy worrying about whether this absence of a season will come into full fruition. I have other things I can do with my time, none of which will diminish my love for basketball, which I can assure you goes far beyond the reaches of a league full of idiots who pay Rashard Lewis as much money as he makes. While I definitely appreciate the beautiful distraction that televised basketball can provide for me, I've grown up being a person who'd rather be out actually doing something than sitting around watching a game, and that's during the 82 game regular season. During the playoffs, I get so nervous about whatever the hell the Spurs are doing that I usually force myself to be indisposed whenever they're playing. Superseding the larger issue of why in the hell I write so frequently for a basketball site while my actual intake of the games is inversely proportional, I feel as if my lockout fighting strength has been all but drained by the NFL Lockout and ESPN's overly dramatic on-air readings of fake letters from "fans" they either wrote on the cutting room floor, or on a napkin while at lunch. While I'm entirely sure my money will effectively be put where my mouth is over the course of a nine month void where the NBA season used to reside, all I can offer is that I haven't tired of shooting baskets in 21 years. I think I can last at least a little longer. If not, there's always PlayStation basketball.
- I finally saw Super 8 this weekend. During the roughly two hours it lasted, I found myself asking the question "What kind of world is this becoming where JJ Abrams' (my least favorite creative person not named Frank Miller) last two movies were awesome, and Tim Burton's (my favorite) last two sucked egregiously large toad ass?" Super 8 was very simply just a great movie, and the only one I've ever seen where being a child or simply existing as a human in the 70s actually looked cool. Dazed and Confused sucked. Get over it. I realize I'm definitely not on the first train to the station as far as people that thought it was a good movie, but sometimes I lose track of time and will forget to see movies until long after the advertisement for the home copy airs on TV. I'm definitely glad I got a chance to see this one on the big screen though, and found myself peculiarly standing by train tracks for the remainder of the weekend.
- I, being someone who doesn't thoroughly appreciate golf, found myself chuckling at how fast everybody who does seemed to quietly step off the Rory McIlroy bandwagon over the weekend. After running away with the victory at the last tournament, he destroyed the last half of the field on his way to a 25th place finish this weekend. At some point during the course of the British Open, commentators and camera operators just kind of stopped mentioning McIlroy's name and started realizing that 12 different golfers have won the last 12 tournaments. That puts Rory at one for his last twelve, if we're simply using the most recent group of tournaments as the sample group. If we're simply going off of wins, which is how we measure Tiger Woods' performance, then perhaps the golf watchers should reign it in a little before they crown Rory "the next Tiger", which is what they (and by "they", I mean Rick Reilly and ESPN) tried to do after Rory got his "one".
- I tied up the NBA Jam machine at Kung Fu Saloon for an hour and a half this weekend, before retiring to go do what people who go to saloons go there to do. While it's obviously reassuring to know that my particular brand of hard-nosed 'Zo and Larry arcade Bball is still as potent as it ever was (I held one particularly enthusiastic opponent to just 35 points over the course of an entire game), it's perhaps more indicting of the quality of the bachelor party I was attending. Before any of y'all try and drain my thunder by insisting that my 35 point smothering was a result of the fact that my opponent was likely drunk, keep in mind that NBA Jam was always so forgiving of user error that it was completely possible to lose a big lead in the fourth quarter to your little brother, who simply shot threes with Nick Anderson and Penny Hardaway, because he alternately thought that either one was Shaq, and that threes were Shaq's business, and that Shaq's business was good. That never happened to me, I'm just saying that it was entirely possible and could've happened to somebody, and that that somebody probably never forgot that.