Sunday, July 18, 2010

Stupid Subway Tricks

Riding the subway gets pretty boring after 5000+ swipes per year, so why not have some fun while you're at it? Here are some good, clean ways to help pass the time:

1. Stand on the edge of the platform and look frantically down the track for the next train (like everybody else), except look in the wrong direction. It's even funnier when you make exasperated gestures, complain loudly, etc.

2. Blab away on your cell phone in between stations, even though no reception exists at all. Especially nice in tunnels between Manhattan and Brooklyn, or especially long express stretches (59th to 125th on A train).

3. Rehearse dialogue from an imaginary screenplay, loudly and by yourself. The lines should be some combination of absurd, pretentious, offensive, and intermittently en fran├žais.

4. Sketch the person sitting across from you, and look as serious as you possibly can. The sketch must never be seen by anyone.

5. Lift extremely light weights repeatedly, or jog in place, or perform some other form of totally lame exercise on the train. Breathe heavily and moan a lot.

6. Work on the NY Times crossword in a very obvious and obnoxious way. Be sure to make annoying comments to yourself, chuckle a lot, and look around the train for approval. This is really funny on Mondays.

7. Scrawl random mathematical calculations on several pieces of paper, with an extremely worried look on your face. Accompany your work with visual measurements of various parts of the subway car (height of doors, people's feet, etc.).

8. Ask the person next to you for directions to part of New York that is absolutely as far as possible from where the train is currently headed. A remote and potentially dangerous location is preferable.



Lemme know how it goes!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

The Decision

8:53 - Folks, I'll admit I'm a little excited about this. I just turned the TV on and quickly found the hilarious info blurb about tonight's program on ESPN: "LeBron James announces whether he'll stay with the Cavaliers or go to another NBA team." This is absolutely the most informative and factually correct INFO box Time Warner Cable has provided since we re-subscribed to cable.

8:58 - This is the biggest load of bullshit I've ever seen in my life. Jeez! They just showed the election-style map with the current polls, and Miami leads with 42%. Knicks are at 15% and the Nets aren't even on the map.

9:00 - Nice fucking shirt, LeBron! Seriously. I like that party shirt!

9:01 - Is James Earl Jones narrating this thing? Wait a sec, the show just started, and it's the exact same bunch of nimwits sitting around (Wilbon, Stuart Scott, one of the Barrys, some other moron)! A seamless transition from nothing to nothing.

9:04 - Wow, the Nets really are out of this? Hey, at least they just picked up Travis Outlaw!

9:05 - They're showing a video montage designed to convince us that LeBron is "the most coveted prize in this year's free agent class." No shit!!! Is there a Josh Childress Decision airing on TBS tonight that I didn't know about? I'm two seconds away from switching to Bethenny Getting Married? for Pete's sake!

9:10 - I was kinda hoping they might play "Heroin" in the background: "I have made... very big decision..."

9:14 - At 8:00 AM EST tomorrow morning, I'll announce whether I'm serving Lee Jr. a waffle, a bowl of oatmeal, or possibly yogurt.

9:17 - Yes!!! The Knicks have climbed to 15%!!!

9:18 - OK, let's be serious for a minute. This is total bullshit and insulting to sports fans of all kinds. I propose a boycott of ESPN and the NBA (unless he picks the Knicks) for this offensive charade. I'm not kidding. I'm never watching Sunday Night Baseball again.

9:22 - I can't believe they haven't played "Split Decision" by the Crowes yet! That's a slam dunk, right?

9:23 - Here we go, the actual interview. The word "process" was just used five eight nine ten eleven times in 20 30 40 seconds.

9:26 - "Decision" is gaining on "process" as of ten seconds ago. I'll keep you posted.

9:27 - FFFFFFFFFFFFFUUUUUUUUUUUCCCCCCCCCCKKKKKKKKKKKKK YYYYYYYOOOOOOOOOOOUUUUUUUUUU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I'm such a stupid idiot. Really.




Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Germany-Spain live blog!

Today's post is an exciting one... the first "voice recognition" live blog on Lee's Steez!

If all goes as planned, the new software (purchased by my intern, Michelle) should convert my running commentary into text, which will then automatically be posted at halftime. I'll be reporting via headset mic, as my schedule today doesn't permit me to sit at a computer like a lazy scumbag.

Let's see how it goes!!!


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













































































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



























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
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






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

















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


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
















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







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













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














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















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






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Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Uruguay-Netherlands live blog!

This could be the shortest live blog since I attempted to give a minute-by-minute account of me listening to Tangerine Dream on sleeping pills (this was never published). I just got both kids down for their afternoon naps-- Jr seems solid  but Li'l Mz could wake up at any minute. I think they're (whoever "they" are) renovating the apartment across from us, or maybe even demolishing it. It's kinda noisy.
Note that I'm listening with the sound off, so I'm missing all commentary. If they say, "Once again, we remind you that an enormous spacecraft is still hovering over the stadium... we've been given specific instructions by the aliens that we are only to talk about the E.T. visit; we cannot film anything..." then forgive me if I don't report on it.

1.55 - So the Netherlands are orange, right?

3.02 - Nice move by the Dutch guy that looks just like Rob Corrdry!

4.29 - Man, I wish Uruguay's abbreviation was "URI." Then the score would say "URINED."

8.47 - I'm so psyched to see that model run naked in the streets if Uruguay wins!!! Maybe Laura Posada or Minka Kelly will try a stunt like this in October...

10.54 - The names on the backs of Uruguay's jerseys seem to be written in "Menu" font, which I can't find anywhere on my computer.

13.28 - Man, I meant to ask Grit about this but I forgot... we used to hear stories about players peeing out the sides of their shorts during matches if they really had to go. At least that's what our coach used to say when we'd ask to come out of a game so we could go to the bathroom.

16.30 - That always happens... a guy tries to make one fake too many, loses possession, and immediately trips the guy that stole the ball..

17.38 - WHOA! What a shot! Count it!

20.01 - The Dutch electrical tape-style numbers on their jerseys are ridiculous.

HT - At least we didn't miss much! Principessa woke up at 20.03... I knew I should have had my intern transcribe this. So a guy got kicked square in the head (right off the LIJSL soccer camp video Why bicycle kicks are dangerous), Uruguay scored a neat outside shot, and a stupid commericial for something called The Expendables aired ("together... for the first and only time..." - isn't anything happening for the first time necessarily also happening for the only time to date?!).

75.30 - Sorry about the lapse. I missed two goals, although I was in the room for one of 'em. I've been enjoying the play of Dirk Kuyt, who strongly resembles a cross between a Johnny Be Good era Anthony Michael Hall and the weird freaky guy from The Hills Have Eyes. Hey, they actually were in a movie together...

89.04 - OK, this one's about over. I'm still considering jetting down to Borders at Columbus Circle for Kendra's book signing. I wonder how many people show up with copies of Kendra Exposed?!! One time I showed up at a signing with SHIT! Uruguay just scored! I'm not sure how much SHIT! It's 102 degrees out!

Hopefully I'll be back tomorrow. Dag!

World Cup predictions

I totally missed the cutoff for my picks last round, but I swear on the Stables of King Augeas that I had Brazil, Uruguay, Germany, Spain...

So here goes:
Netherlands 2, Uruguay 1
Germany 3, Spain 1

Germany 2, Netherlands 0

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Nitty from the Gritty

Continuing our World Cup 2010 coverage on Lee's Steez, here's an interview with our favorite Brooklyn soccer afficionado. Grit was kind enough to squeeze this into his busy schedule before tomorrow's quarterfinal matches...


Lee: Give us a quick profile of yourself as a soccer fan.

Grit: I was partnered with a Man-U-supporting resident alien for about 12 years. Caught the World Cup bug in '98. Lived in an immigrant-rich part of Brooklyn throughout the 00's, regularly waking up at 7 a.m. to watch live matches on Fox Soccer Channel and Goal TV. Watched nearly all of the '02 World Cup even though it was on in the middle of the night (when it was over I had jet lag though hadn't left home). Traveled to Europe (not Germany) to enjoy the '06 action without so much time shift.

Let's just say I know the difference between Xavi and Xabi Alonso, and what it means to win "the treble."


You can’t walk down the street without hearing someone complain about the officiating this year. Is this a product of better replay technology, the fact that soccer’s fan base is expanding, or do the refs just really suck in this tournament?

Nothing has changed except more Americans are watching. Every American must go through this pain to adapt to football (I'll call it that to distinguish from MLS) or just go back to ignoring it. You see, Americans expect fairness. Other countries cry when they lose on a bad call, but only we cry and also demand a permanent fix. I'm sure it looks ridiculous to the rest of the world -- especially to those who know that American sports also suffer from horrendous officiating errors and biases, despite elaborate efforts that cause absurd game delays. The notion that more rules make sports more fair sounds to the rest of the world like a call for more lawyers in sports. I sympathize with the World's point of view, though will point out that technology improved tennis, and that the England-Portugal quarterfinal in Euro '04 was the most excruciatingly unfair sporting event ever staged. My solution was to forever despise Portugal and quit supporting England, which is working out nicely.


For our American readers, can you give us a cultural reference point for Wayne Rooney, if such a thing exists?

You have to go back a bit, before all American sports stars were media coached. I'll say Moses Malone. Huge talent, unfathomable aggression but tough to hide the extent to which focus on the game and a very early arrival to the front of the pro stage have impeded the development of mature human being. It looks like Wayne is being better taken care of, but if they put the mic in his face after games it wouldn't be as pretty as with Ron Artest.


I was thinking that Brett Gardner might make a decent soccer player: low center of gravity, inhuman speed, dorky voice, etc. Are there any current New York Yankees that could hack it on the pitch?

All the Latin-American-bred players who are smaller than Orcas (i.e. not Sabathia) probably played into adulthood and are reasonably good. The skill set is so elemental -- speed, eye/hand coordination, balance, discipline to practice -- that it makes sense to assume that almost any great American athlete who can run and is not a specialist at some non-athletic skill (i.e. not Nick Johnson) could have been a great footballer. A-Rod and Jeter for sure, Gardner, why not?


Don't forget that Iron Maiden and their road crew were a champion team. Not sure how that's relevant, but don't forget it.


The Florida Marlins succumbed to World Cup fever a few weeks ago by equipping their fans with vuvuzelas (officially promoted as “Marlins Air Horn Night”), resulting in one of the craziest games I’ve ever watched on television. Do you think the “hell-horns” could possibly expand into American popular music anytime soon (Dave Matthews Band, Jay-Z, etc.)?

Don't forget that the samba part of "Fool in the Rain" was inspired by Argentina's cheering section in the '78 World Cup.


Any predictions for the quarterfinal matches and beyond?

A Uruguay-Paraguay final would be too sweet for words, but I'm not holding out hope. I will hold out hope for Ghana, though they're not good enough (i.e. I will hope they triumph via flukes, chokes and bad calls). Anything can happen, but the safest money is on the one team with international superstars actually cooperating on the pitch, which is Argentina.

One last thing I want to say: I can't praise highly enough ESPN's decision to staff English announcers for their matches, and I can't denigrate vociferously enough ABC's decision to put an asshole American in the booth for last Saturday's disappointing round-of-16 US loss. I sincerely believe we might have fallen because this dipshit's endless speculations on the feelings of the players, especially late in the "psychological game," were so alien to the manly and action-oriented nature of football that the sport's ecosystem rejected our team's noble effort.