Archive for January, 2017



NBC PhillyA Pennsylvania family fighting to have their relatives return to the United States after they were detained at Philadelphia International Airport and sent back overseas under the immigration order told “NBC Nightly News” that they voted for Donald Trump.

“I understand he wants to make America safe,” Sarmad Assali said. “We’re all on with this. I definitely want to be in a safe place. But people need us and we need to be there for them.”

Assali’s two brothers, their wives and their two children initiated their immigration attempts in 2003 while living in Syria. In December 2016, they were approved to join Assali and her husband in Allentown after the couple bought and furnished a home for them.

Assali and her husband, Dr. Ghassan Assali, who has a dentistry practice and received his degree from New York University, are originally from Syria but have been living in the United States for 20-years.

But early Saturday morning, after they landed at Philadelphia International Airport, Assali’s relatives were detained. They were then sent on an 18-hour flight back overseas.

Boy, tough break for the Assali family, huh? Family plans just laid to waste by The Donald. Can’t really blame Trump here, though can we? Did these folks even pay attention during the past couple years? Reminds me of the folks living in trailers on minimum wage who thought they were going to be better off during the next 4-years. Oops. But seriously, the poor Assali family. Support Donnie, go to bat for him, take a bullet for him, defend him to your friends, then as soon as he gets elected you get tossed by the wayside. Tossed out with the trash. Half your posse sent back to Syria on an 18-hour flight. Smell ya, shouldn’t have to tell ya. Thanks for visiting. That’s cold, man.

PS- Seriously though, they totally deserve it.

This photo shows the amazing scale of the incredible US D-Day invasion in France. It was taken three days after the initial landing, on June 9th, 1944. Pretty sure, at this point, Hitler knew we meant business.


Jack Nicklaus’s finishes during the 1970’s in the four major golf tournaments. Be amazed.


The 100-point game by Wilt Chamberlain was amazing, but a few years later Wilt went for 25-points, grabbed 22-rebounds and had 21-assists. It remains the only Double-Triple-Double in NBA history.



Bad. Ass.

What do Jeff Bezos, Kenneth Frazier and Steve Ballmer have in common? baldThey are tremendously successful. And also bald.

Coincidence? Probably not. Men with bald heads are often seen as more dominant and successful by everyone around them, according to a study of the University of Pennsylvania.

The American scientist Albert E. Mannes conducted a study in 2016 with 59 subjects. He wanted to find out how people react to men with shaved heads by showing them a series of pictures.

The subjects got to see each photo twice, once of a man with a full head of hair and once of the same man with his hair shaved off. The subjects reported that they thought the bald men were more dominant, bigger and stronger.

One interesting detail: They had to be completely hairless. Bald patches or pattern baldness was seen as less attractive and weaker.

But bald men are not just more powerful, they are also seen as more intelligent. A global study conducted by the psychologist Ronald Henss of the University of Saarland with over 20,000 subjects suggests that bald men are estimated to be older, but also seem wiser and more intelligent.

Many people also believe that bald men are more potent. This view is only strengthened by the no-hair styles of recognized sex symbols like Jason Statham, Bruce Willis and Michael Jordan, which places you and your masculinity in very good company indeed.

Well, there ya go. Esteemed scientist Albert E. Mannes and respected psychologist Ronald Henss have spoken.* What everybody knew all along has finally been proven by Science. Completely bald men are more dominant, intelligent, successful and potent. End of discussion. Hey, when the University of Pennsylvania and the University of Saarland say it’s true, it’s true. Argument over. You can’t argue with Science, people.

*I have no idea who these people are.

Anyway, boom. Case closed.

Pure terror.

Pure terror.

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. —  An intruder who police say was wearing a SpongeBob outfit while standing over a sleeping woman was arrested Monday morning.

It happened at around 7:15 a.m. Police responded to a home burglary call near 21st Avenue South and 7th Street.  A woman who had been asleep on her couch woke up to find the suspect, identified as Steven Charles Kirkland, 32, wearing the SpongeBob outfit.

The man ran from the house and the victim called police.

Well, I can think of nothing more horrifying than this. Just a terrifying image, waking up, groggily opening your eyes, only to find SpongeBob SquarePants looming over you like some ocean dweller from Hell. Just awful. Those weird eyes, that blank stare, those square pants . . . chills, man.

PS- The image of SpongeBob SquarePants hoofing it from a house is the height of comedy. Makes me smile.

Because the Big Sign Wasn’t Enough

Posted: January 30, 2017 in Humor





Here we have some badass American WWII pilots posing for a casual photo. Wait. Is that a skull? Yes, a Japanese skull.  It was common practice for American soldiers to take body parts as “war souvenirs” and “war trophies”. Teeth and skulls were the most commonly taken, although other body parts were also collected. Yeah, you don’t wanna know. Anyway, look at the youthful, vibrant faces of the All-American boys. Juxtapose that with a dead man’s skull with a helmet on it and you have quite the stunning visual.




Same guy. Seriously.

Same guy. Seriously.

I was talking with a friend the other day and he brought up my odd habit of serendipitously running into rock stars over the years. Man, that was a weirdly worded sentence. Anyway, it is sort of interesting so I thought I’d put them all together in one magnificent blog for your Sunday afternoon reading pleasure. Consider it my gift to you, my loyal readers. You’re welcome. Let us begin . . .

Meeting David Crosby

My regular readers will know that I have a habit of running into famous david-crosby-birthday-august-14people, most notably rock stars and their ilk. In fact, sometimes their ilk are more fun than the rock stars, if you know what I’m sayin’. My encounter with Soupy Sales in a Cleveland Airport bathroom is legendary, and I was once nearly beaten to death by one of Eminem’s bodyguards. Good times. Anyway, here’s another of my many rock star run-ins.

It was late summer 1999, and I was in Cleveland with my late, great, good friend Tim to see the Cleveland Browns open their new stadium. We were staying at the Renaissance downtown and I rose early on the day of the game to go down to the lobby and find a drink newspaper. As I was heading down, the elevator doors opened and a guy with shades stepped in and leaned against the wall opposite me. After about 30-seconds of awkward staring from me and nervous avoiding eye-contact from him, the following conversation transpired:

Me: “Man, you look just like David Crosby.”

David Crosby: “Mmrumph.”

Me: “You are David Crosby, aren’t you?”

David Crosby: “Yep.”

Encouraged, I babbled on for a few minutes about his music. At some point I think I wore him down and he realized I actually appreciated and knew his work. I believe that because he proceeded to open up and actually began a nice, intelligent conversation with me regarding the state of rock music, as it was, in 1999.  The fact that I may have mentioned him providing the sperm for Melissa Etheridge’s successful attempt at motherhood didn’t seem to bother him at all. Hell, at one point I didn’t think I was going to get rid of him. He finally walked with me through the lobby, wrote me a nice note and autograph, and actually gave me a bear hug that went on j-u-s-t a smidge too long before he left.

All in all a nice, albeit somewhat weird, encounter that I’ll never forget.

Anyway, David Crosby and I?


Running into the Runt

This was a quick encounter but special nonetheless since it involved one of myTodd Rundgren musical heroes, Mr. Todd Rundgren, once known as “Runt.” Read on . . .

I was casually walking through City Center in C-Bus a few years ago (City Center was a cool mall, amirite?) when I ran into a rock and roll legend right there in the record store. My hands flew to my face as I yelled this:


Because I’m quick like that, ya know? Immediately his hands flew to his face as he responded:


Bastard was mocking me.

Anyway, after a couple minutes of my blathering on about his music and what it meant to me and him realizing not only that I wasn’t a lunatic but I in fact knew what I was talking about, we had quite the in-depth conversation about the state of music in general. Finally, I moved on to get a corndog and he left for parts unknown.

And that was my brief encounter with Todd Rundgren. Nice life-moment for me, I must admit.

Pimping for the Electric Light Orchestra

I guess it was around 1977, and a friend of mine named Omar was a roadie that lynneworked shows around the midwest. He never traveled with a band, but rather was hired out as part of a group of guys to help set up shows and whatnot. Anyway, he got to know a lot of bands, had access to backstage passes, and he included me occasionally.

One night I get a call asking if I wanted backstage passes to the Electric Light Orchestra Show at St. John Arena in C-Bus. Well, hell yes. I was a big fan and still am to this day. It’s well known how I feel about Jeff Lynne and his absence from the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. With his work with ELO, The Traveling Wilburys, George Harrison and others it’s a damn shame he’s not in there, an absolute travesty.

But as I’m prone to do, I digress.

I eagerly snatched up the backstage pass and looked forward to the show. To say I was amped for this one was an understatement of the highest variety. I couldn’t wait for the show, but more importantly getting backstage and meeting the boys themselves, in particularly Jeff Lynne. The day finally arrived and I headed over to the arena. By the way, I was living at 178 West 8th Avenue, Apt. C, just south of campus, which is not relevant but is nevertherless burned into my brain forevermore. Alas, when I got there I found that I never had a ticket to the show, just a backstage pass, and it wouldn’t get me in at any of the regular gates. What the hell? I was flummoxed. Just when I was at my lowest, in despair and ready to head to High Street and drink away my pain, I heard a voice . . .

“Shoe! Hey! SHOE! Over here!”

I look around, and there walking towards a side door was my boy Omar. They had those portable iron fence things blocking people, and it formed a path the band took from their bus to the arena. I ran over and told Omar of my plight, and at that point he just told me to hop the fence and follow him in with his group. A guard started to object but a long-haired guy waved him off with the classic, “He’s with us.”

Only then did I realize the long-haired cat was none other than Bev Bevan, ELO’s drummer. Seems Omar had been sent to get the band from the tour bus and I happened along at the right time. I recognized a couple other guys, but my hero Lynne was nowhere to be seen.

I made my way in and ended up at the side of the stage and was never told to move, evidently due to the pass I had hanging from my neck. The show was great and the view was interesting to say the least. Let’s just say some of those girls in the front will do, well, almost anything to get the attention of the band.

However, it was after the show when the real fun began.

I really had nothing to do immediately following, and Omar was busy doing what roadies do, so I just wandered around looking for the party.

Lucky for me I found it.

It was basically a curtained-off area with some tables and chairs scattered about, along with a boatload of various types of boozes and appetizers. I also remember candles and a lot of incense.  There were also a couple of tables with some other stuff on them that I really don’t feel comfortable mentioning here. I’m sure you could guess pretty easily. Hey, it was the late 70’s after all. I grabbed a beer and took a seat on a comfy little loveseat type of thing that was positioned in a good spot and prepared to watch the festivities.

After a half hour or so the man himself walked in, Mr. Jeff Lynne. He was shaking hands and people were generally fawning over him, so I decided to hold back and play it cool for a bit. A couple of times I could have sworn he actually looked over at me, but I figured it had to be my imagination.

A little later my buddy Omar came walking in, looked over, did a double-take, and did the old olympic speed walk over to me.

Omar: “What the hell are you doing? Jesus.”

Me, offering him a beer: “Thanks, but you can call me Shoe. What’s wrong with you?”

Omar: “You’re in Jeff Lynne’s chair, dude. Get the hell up.”

Me: “Really? Nobody’s said anything.”

Omar: “Get. Up. NOW.”

Me: “But it’s a really comfy chair.”

Omar: “Good God, man, you’re going to get me fired. Get up. Why do you think this chair is at the front of the room and on a raised platform?”

Me, glancing around: “Wow, it is in a good spot. And I never noticed the raise platform thing. Damn. Are you sure I can’t stay here? Nobody’s said a word.”

Omar: I’m saying a word! Oh God, here he comes.”

At that point I was done messing with my friend and thought the best course of action might be to actually get up. Lynne came over and stopped right in front of us, I’ve no idea why. For a second I thought I was going to get yelled at for sitting in his chair but as it turns out he had a question, and for whatever reason he thought I might have the answer . . .

Jeff Lynne: “Mate, do you know where we might find some tarts?”

Me: “Pop Tarts? I’m sure somebody could run and pick some up for you.”

Jeff Lynne nods approvingly. He was looking at a man of action, a go-getter, a quick decision-maker of the highest order. I was impressing Jeff Lynne! How awesome I was!

But he was still staring at me.

Me: “Oh, you want me to go get them?”

Jeff Lynne: “That would be wonderful. How long will it take?”

Me: “Well, there’s a 7-11 nearby. It should only take a few minutes.”

Jeff Lynne, my hero, again nods approvingly. I only learned later that he had no idea what a 7-11 was.

At that point, as I’m walking out, another roadie dude comes running up to me with a weird look on his face.

Roadie: “Dude, do you understand what he wants?”

Me: “Sure, he wants some Pop Tarts. Do you guys have a toaster in here?”

Roadie: “No, no, no. Dude, tarts are hookers. He wants some hookers.”

Wait. What? Pop Tarts I was good for. Ladies of the Night? Hey, I was good but not that good. Who did he think I was, a pimp?

Good God.

At that point, as you could imagine I was in a bit of a pickle, because, well, I’d just promised I’d supply the leader of the Electric Light Orchestra with some hookers. Not exactly my specialty.

In retrospect I probably could have run over to High Street, gone into a bar, told some girls ELO wanted to meet them, taken them over and hightailed it out of there before the confusion ensued. As it happened though, I only did one of those things.

I hightailed it out of there.

What can I say? I had no idea what to do, I was pretty sure I’d never meet Jeff Lynne again, so I vamoosed. Cut and ran. I scrammed.

I never heard exactly what happened after I left. Omar had gone on to load some trucks or something so he had no idea. Maybe somebody else took care of the band. Maybe something else grabbed Jeff Lynne’s attention.

Or maybe, just maybe, he sat there for hours in his special chair, watching the door, waiting for the tarts that never came.

The O’ Jays and I

For some reason I’ve had more than my share of random encounters with ojaysfamous people over the years, both from the rock world and elsewhere. Hell, I was once standing at an airport urinal, looked to my right, and there stood Mr. Soupy Sales himself. For you kids under 50 out there Mr. Sales was Peewee Herman before Peewee Herman was Peewee Herman. Sort of. Anyway, my friends seem to enjoy hearing about these random encounters of mine so I thought I’d share them from time-to-time.

It happened when my friends Jigger, Jerry (sadly, both gone now) and I were heading to Vegas back in the early ’90s. You’ve got to remember that I’ve always been quite the Motown/Philly Sound fan and am pretty knowledgeable about a lot of the groups of that genre.

We’d been in the air for a few minutes when I thought I recognized a guy a couple of rows in front of me. Was that Eddie Levert of The O’Jays? I loved The O’Jays!

What the hell, I thought. I went up and sat by him (keep in mind there were only about 30-people on the plane). Sure enough, it was Levert and the rest of the group along with about eight roadies sitting here and there. Turns out Levert was a great guy who appreciated the fact a Southern Ohio white boy loved his music so much, so an idea was hatched in my brain.

Throwing caution and common sense to the wind, I started singing one of their big hits, “Love Train” and begging the guys to join in. What can I say? I was overcome with joy at meeting the O’Jays and I was pretty sure I’d never have this chance again.

Long story short, in a couple minutes all three O’Jays were singing backup to yours truly on lead vocal. One of the guys (Walter Williams possibly) actually got up in the aisle and was doing the dance moves as I stood and sang beside him. Surreal. About halfway through I forgot the words and Levert took over. I then attempted to join the dancing but failed miserably, to the delight of the crowd. Jigger and Jerry? They just sat there with mouths agape, stunned at the surreal scene in front of them.

I then took a theatrical bow with the group as the crowd went wild (at least in my mind, don’t tell me they didn’t), the stewardesses applauded and Jigger and Jerry sat there shaking their heads. I believe I even followed up by trying to start a rousing rendition of “Backstabbers” but my moment had passed. The group got off at our stopover in Detroit, bro hugs were shared all around, and the O’Jays went on their way.

And you know what? To this day I can’t hear “Love Train” without getting a big grin on my face. If only camera phones were in existence back then. Damn it, man.

By the way, my buddies The O’Jays were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2004. I wonder if they remember me . . .

The Legend of James Taylor’s Jacket

Well, it’s a legend in my circles anyway. And yes, kids, I have circles.

Anyway, as many of you know I have a jean jacket that 1once belonged to James Taylor. For you younger readers there was a pretty good singer known as JT before Timberlake. Here’s how I got the jacket . . .

I went to see JT at Blossum Music Center back in ’78 with friends Tom E and Chris B. After the show we ambled down to the side of the stage, just getting a look at the setup really. The roadies were tearing down the set, wandering around doing this and that. At some point I look up and say, “Hey, look. He left his jacket hanging on the mike stand.” He’d worn it onstage and had taken it off during the show.

Anyway, one of us (probably Tom) gets the bright idea to try to grab it. Nice plan but the place was crawling with security and roadies. I turn to Chris for ideas, turn back around, and Tom had already jumped the railing and was halfway across the stage. He was just casually walking like he belonged there. A couple of guys glanced at him but didn’t say a word, either because he looked like he belonged or because he was 6′-3″, 280 lbs and looked like he could rip your heart out and show it to you before you died (which by the way he could have but that’s another story). He casually grabs the jacket, throws it over his shoulder, and hops off the other side of the stage as Chris and I run frantically around to meet him. We walk away without looking back, expecting at any moment to hear, “Stop them! Thieves! Thay have James Taylor’s jacket! For God’s sake stop the bastards!” Except it doesn’t happen, and we make it to the car.

The Jacket.

The Jacket.

At that point Tom tries it on. Obviously too small. Chris grabs it. Too big. Heh-heh. Fit me perfectly. Apparently, in ’78, James T and I were exactly the same size.

And that’s how I came to own James Taylor’s jacket.

By the way, later I woke up wide-eyed in the middle of the night, realizing I hadn’t checked the pockets. The possibilities were mind-boggling. Carly Simon’s phone number possibly? Alas, nothing. Damn . . .


How Peter Cetera Once Ruined a Relationship. Mine.

It was the late 70’s and a bunch of us went down to The Natti to catch a


Yes. This guy.

Chicago concert. This was back when Chicago was cool, still using horns in their songs, long before they went all schlocky and sappy with the lame ballads. Sure, they did slow stuff like “Color My World” before, but unfortunately Peter Cetera sort of took over with tunes like “You’re the Inspiration” and “Hard to Say I’m Sorry” and it all went downhill from there. It would have never happened had guitarist Terry Kath knew that gun was loaded when he put it upside his head, but that’s neither here nor there. Well, maybe to Terry.

But I digress. And maybe there’s another reason I don’t like Peter Cetera.

Back to the concert. This was before those 11-people got crushed to death at The Who concert, so it was still General Admission at the gate. Trust me, when it was General Admission I always ended up right down front, and that’s where this all started.

The show was great, Robert Lamm and Cetera and the boys were rockin’, and my date and I were having a good time. Keep in mind I’d been dating this girl for about 2-years, which will become relevant shortly. Anyway, after a couple of the obligatory encores the lights came up and we’re sort of standing there talking to friends, waiting for the crowd to thin. At that point some guy comes walking up to my girlfriend and asks to speak with her. Hell, I thought something had happened, an emergency or something, and he had been sent to find her. He sort of took her elbow and walked her a few feet away to have a private conversation. She listened intently and nodded her head a couple times, the guy did the same, then she turned and walked back over to me.

The guy stayed where he was. I was getting a bad vibe.

What followed was a conversation that basically ended a relationship.

Me: “What was that about? Is everything OK?”

Her: “Yes, it’s . . . fine.

Me, senses on high alert: “So. . . what’s up?

Her: “W-e-l-l . . . that guy told me that Peter Cetera wanted to ask if I’d like to come out to his bus.

Damn Cetera. Lotta nerve, huh? But my girlfriend was just looking at me.

Me: “Uh, you know what he wants, right?”

Her: “Yes.”

Next came the words that are etched in my mind to this day.

Her: “What should I do?”

Wait. What? What should I do? What should I do?

Me, after about 15-seconds of stunned silence: “What should you do? Well, do what you want, but Mr. Cetera better be ready to give you a ride back to Chillicothe because if you get on that bus I’m not waiting on you.”

At this point she actually thought about it for a minute and discussed it with her friends. Then, she decided she’d stick with me. Boy, did I feel special. Did I mention we’d been dating for 2-years?

Turns out she probably should have gone to the bus. And stayed there.

As you can imagine, we had the “How could you have even considered going off with Peter Cetera like that? How?” conversation about 173 times over the next couple of weeks, and naturally she had no reasonable answer. What was she supposed to say, “Well, I thought it would be nice to boink a rock star?” After that it was all downhill. I couldn’t get past it.

Yes my friends, fame and money are a powerful attractions indeed.

Then again, could I resist if Kate Beckinsale saw me somewhere and sent an assistant over with an invitation to board her bus? No freaking way. Probably not.

Wait. So I would do the same thing I was mad at my girlfriend for considering? Something’s wrong here.

Maybe it’s a double standard?

Maybe I should have just laughed it off?

Maybe I made a mistake?

Maybe I overreacted?

Crap, the more I think about it now the more I think I’m guilty of all of the above and was being a jackass. Or maybe I wasn’t? The mind reels. I’m so confused.

So I come out of this little self-therapy session realizing three things. The first is that I’ll never fully understand the whole dynamic between men and women. The second is that I still hold a grudge against Peter Cetera. The third? I really need to let this go.


Bodyguarding Beck


His life was in my hands.

A few years ago I had a rather interesting experience involving Beck. Here’s how it went down:

A buddy of mine used to work for a company in C-Bus that provided concert workers. You know, to take tickets, stuff like that. He asked if I’d be interested in working one of the shows and I said sure, what the hell, might be fun. So, he talks to the folks in charge and they make the approval. Didn’t know me from Adam but that didn’t seem to bother them. A couple of weeks later I get the call – Beck is playing Veteran’s Auditorium and they needed extra workers. Cool. I mean, at the time Beck was one of the biggest rock stars on the planet, a darling of the critics. Anyway, we get there, are given the yellow T-shirts with Security on the back, and then the head guy comes in to assign jobs.

He goes down the line, grabs my buddy and his wife, and tells them they’ll be assigned rows to help people get seated. Awesome. They’d get to stand there and watch the show. He looks me up and down and says, “I’ll need you in the back” then walks away. Damn. My friend looks at me and says, “Sorry dude. Looks like you’re out at the back door or back gate or something. Sorry you won’t get to see the show.”

Oh well. I took a shot, right?

Finally the guy comes back for me and says to follow him. I do and we end up in the “back”, as in “backstage.” He says, “I want you to stand right here. Under no circumstances do you let anybody through this door.” I look up at the door that says “Beck” on it and ask rather wittily, “You want me to guard Beck’s dressing room?”

And he sure enough did.

Just me, who’d never guarded anything in his life, as the only thing between Beck and the hordes of lunatics wanting a piece of him.

I stood there for a couple hours trying to look menacing, the opening act started, and finally some guy walks out the door – Beck’s drummer. He sits on the floor across the hallway from me and we proceed to shoot the breeze. A few minutes later another band member comes out and sits down as well. Long story short, pretty soon the whole band was out there, including the man himself, Beck, and his three backup singers.

I eventually sit down because they asked me to and I figured it was OK. The only time I froze for a sec was when the drummer asked me what I was currently listening to. I really didn’t want to look like an idiot so I said The Eels. I breathed a sigh of relief as that answer was met with approving nods all around. Sweet. At that point I believed, perhaps irrationally, that I’d earned instant credibilty.

Eventually they all went back inside to get ready, and upon their return I was invited to stand at the side of the stage and watch the show. Very cool. To top off my evening, afterwards Beck requested that I escort him safely to the bus, which I did. Dude must have thought I was a trained professional or something.

Maybe the best part was later, when I met up with my friend and he asked how it was in the back. “Well,” I said. “Let me tell you about it . . .”

Steven, Joe and Me: Meeting Aerosmith

My boys. Well, for a minute.

My boys. Well, for a minute.

Back around 1978 Aerosmith was on a bit of a downward spiral. Something about drug addictions and whatnot. Anyway, it was after “Dream On” but before the album “Permanent Vacation” marked their return to prominence. A friend of mine was a regional roadie, one of those guys who doesn’t travel with the bands but works a certain area where he helps set up shows and the like. Well, he had backstage passes to Aerosmith and asked if I wanted one.

Well, yeah.

I watched the show (not so good actually – something about drug addictions and whatnot) then headed backstage for the festivities. I don’t really know how to explain it other than saying it’s exactly what you’d expect it to be. Lots of girls, drugs, alcohol, and things I didn’t recognize and haven’t seen since. Rock and Roll decadence at its highest form. Back in those days I blended right in. My hair was as long as theirs and I looked like a taller Charley Manson, minus the God complex and murderous intentions (well, maybe just the God complex).

I worked my way over to Steven Tyler and struck up a conversation, probably saying something witty and insightful like “nice show” which incidentally would have been a complete lie. He looked at me through glazed-over eyes and offered me a beer (for the record, it was a Stroh’s – dead serious). One thing led to another and I ended up on a couch sitting between Tyler and Joe Perry.

Kids, there once existed a picture of me, between those two, all three of us holding up a beer for the camera with half-crazed smiles on our faces. Later, in one of the dumbest moves of my life, I gave the picture to a girl I was dating, who displayed it proudly on her apartment wall. Sadly, when we had an ugly break-up, she hit me where it hurt most – she burned the picture.

For years I waited for her to show up and say she had really kept the picture, then hand it to me with a smile. That moment never happened, but there’s still hope, right? Right?

Damn it.

When a Beach Boy Tried to Steal My Girl

In the late 70’s I went to see The Beach Boys, again at Riverfront Coliseum in The Natti.



It marked the return of Brian Wilson, quite a big deal at the time. Anyway, we were once again right down front. From the get-go Mike Love was paying special attention to my date, at one point getting down on one knee and singing a song right to her face. I don’t remember the song, probably because I was too busy watching the security dude and figuring my odds of getting a shot at Love’s nose. Eventually Love actually sent a guy down to ask if she was interested. She said no and he never came close to us the rest of the show. Bizarre experience. And oddly enough, a few years later almost exactly the same thing happened with Peter Cetera of Chicago.

Eating Mac and Cheese with Taylor Hawkins

Couscous Mac and Cheese Fan.

It was at CalJam ’18 and I was backstage thanks to a buddy of mine whose daughter happens to be on the Foo Fighters management team. I was causally going through the food line, opening those stainless steel chafing containers as I went. As I opened one I said out loud to myself, “Huh. I wonder what that is?” Next thing I knew a voice from behind me said, “That’s Couscous Mac and Cheese man! You have to try it!” I turned around, and there stood none other than Foo Fighters drummer Taylor Hawkins, who proceeded to grab a spatula and fill my plate with a generous portion of Couscous Mac and Cheese. Then he slapped me on the back and sauntered away. Thanks Taylor Hawkins. By the way, the Couscous Mac and Cheese was indeed spectacular.

So that’s all I got. Oh. I’ve had some near misses as they say, like the time I got on an elevator in Vegas and was told Alice Cooper just got off. I also attempted to approach Eminem at an airport in Miami only to be stopped by a couple bodyguards the size of Rhode Island. Good times indeed. Have a great weekend everyone.



The average length of a major league baseball game is 2-hours and 52-minutes. Of those 172-minutes, only 18 involve actually playing baseball.



Here’s an example of what made her great.



Posted to anger more Nazis. You’re welcome.

Perhaps it was the photo of Hitler with the clown nose I posted, I can’t be sure. For whatever reason yours truly now has an angry Nazi on his hands. But hey, it’s nothing a little hand sanitizer can’t cure, amirite?

Good Lord.

In the short, almost 5-year lifespan of my humble little website (myself and my crack staff here at Shoe: Untied started on April 12th, 2012) I’ve offended midgets (not really warranted), clowns (eh, maybe warranted), bowler mothers (totally unwarranted), racists (completely warranted), and fans of LeBron James (it was actually LeBron James).

Now? I’ve gone and pissed off some Nazis.

See, today I wrote a short blog entitled 7 Things You May Not Know About Adolf Hitler, a what-I-thought was an innocent little blog about the most evil human being of the 20th century. Sure, I threw in some humor because, hey, that’s what I do.

Turns out Der Fuhrer still has some fans out there.

I know this because I received a message this evening that, well, basically threatened me with bodily harm. It was a really long diatribe, so I’ll just give you the highlights followed by my responses.

“You stepped WAY over the line you stupid motherf*cker with the photo of Hitler with the clown nose and comments making fun of him Hitler will RISE again!!”

First of all, if I’m not mistaken that’s a poorly written, run-on sentence. You’re better than that, Nazi person. Or maybe not. And was that personal insult necessary? I think not. And I hate to break this to you, but Hitler will not rise again because he’s, well, dead. And he’s been dead for over 70-years. Pretty sure ain’t comin’ back.

But it gets better.

“How would you know that Adolf Hitler had a fatulance (seriously, he typed “fatulance”) problem? You don’t know and nobody knows.”

True, Nazi boy, I do not know for sure that your fearless leader farted uncontrollably. I’m just going by historical reports. What I do know is that Adolf Hitler initiated World War II and tried to eliminate an entire race of people, so there’s that.

“Hitler did a lot of good and his ideals can still be used today. People forget all the good he did.”

Hmmm, I wonder why would people forget any good he did? Maybe because he oversaw fascist policies that resulted in millions of deaths? Yeah, that’s what I thought.

“Watch your back Dave Shoemaker because we are watching you.”

O-o-o-o-h! The big kicker. That’s scary, man. I’m getting chills but not really. Little did this bozo know he was fodder for my latest blog. Woot! Thanks Nazi racist asshole!

To summarize, Nazis are still in existence and they are still ignorant, illiterate dumbasses. Thank you and goodnight.

Note: When people comment on my site it gives an IP address so I can tell what part of the world the message came from. This particular message came from . . . wait for it . . . Germany. I am both chilled and amused by this.

Yeah, you probably know a lot about the evil dictator and leader of the Third hitlerclownReich, but I bet you don’t know everything. However, once again I’m here for you. What follows are some facts about the man who tried to take over the world while exterminating an entire race of people in the process. History and Social Studies teachers, feel free to print this out and use in in the classroom. You’re welcome.

  1. Adolf Hitler was almost known as Adolf Schiklgruber. True story. Alois Schiklgruber made the decision to change his surname from  Schicklgruber to Hitler on January 7, 1877 . Somehow, “Heil Schilkgruber!” wouldn’t have had the same ring to it, man.
  2. I wrote about this the other day (which actually led to this blog) but the Nazi government headed by Hitler led the most powerful anti-smoking campaign in the world during the 1930’s and ’40s.  The German doctors were the first to establish the link between smoking and lung cancer. Hitler’s personal distaste for tobacco and his open criticism of tobacco consumption proved a strong motivating factor for the movement because, you know, Hitler could have you murdered and whatnot. It was around 30-years later when the rest of the world caught on.
  3. Medical reports show that Adolf Hitler used cocaine and injected himself  with the extracts of seminal vesicles and the testes of young bulls to bolster his libido. But really, who hasn’t? He also had an uncontrolled flatulence problem, which was probably an issue at meetings with his evil henchmen. Supposedly Hitler used the cocaine to clear his sinuses and soothe his nerves, even though I always thought cocaine wired you up. Hitler, man. What a nitwit.
  4. Hitler was a vegetarian during WWII. Yep, wouldn’t touch meat. And during movies, if there was a scene showing any type of cruelty to animals, he reportedly would cover his eyes and look away until someone said the scene was over.  Isn’t that sort of a funny visual? I mean really? Anyway, in 1937 Hitler stopped eating all meat except liver dumplings, which is just weird. His typical diet consisted of baked potatoes with cottage cheese, spaghetti, oatmeals, stewed fruits and vegetables, an egg, and a box of Fruit Loops. OK, I made up that Fruit Loops part.
  5. Hitler’s plan for Moscow was to exterminate all its inhabitants, level the city, and replace the it with a gigantic artificial lake which would submerge Moscow completely. The huge lake was to be created by opening the sluices of the Moscow-Volga canal. But hey, Hitler loved animals!
  6. Hitler had a collection of thousands of Jewish artifacts that he got from the people headed to concentration camps. He planned to build a museum of Jewish artifacts and call it “Museum of Extinct Race“. How’d that work out for you, Hitler? U-S-A! U-S-A! And Russia of course. They helped.
  7. Hitler’s famous autobiography “Mein Kampf” was originally titled, “My Struggle for Five Years Against Lies, Stupidity and Cowardice”. It was a little wordy and didn’t exactly roll off the tongue, so it was probably a good call. On a related note, I could write a book using that exact same title documenting my years working under a certain idiot superintendent. Boom. I said it.

So there ya go, 7 Things You May Not Know About Adolf Hitler. And really, name one other person who can write about Hitler and throw some humor in as well. You can’t.

PS- I wrote this whole story spelling his name Adolph instead of Adolf before I realized I’d misspelled it. Who does that? I’ve seen his name written a million times. Weird.




Classic stuff.


According to ESPN’s Marc Stein, Carmelo Anthony’s days with the New York carmelo_anthony_meme_3Knicks may be numbered, but the franchise’s brass may want to rethink what it can get in return for him. A report from ESPN’s Marc Stein claims the Knicks offered to trade Anthony to the Cleveland Cavaliers in exchange for Kevin Love. They were immediately turned down.

B-W-A-H-A-H-A-H-A-H-A!!! Gee, ya think? Let’s see . . . Love is 28, four years younger than Melo. Love is averaging 20.5 points and 10.9 rebounds in 31.9 minutes per game. His PER has also risen to 22.28, his highest number since joining the Cavs before the 2014-15 season. He’s also learned to play within the LeBron-Kyrie Irving Cavs offense.

Melo, on the other hand, is averaging 22.6 and 6.0 while being the Black Hole of the NBA. Dude is a ball-stopper extraordinaire who would rather kill a puppy than, you know, PASS THE DAMN BALL.

The Knicks and Phil Jackson, my friends, are cuckoo, delirious and batshit crazy.

Love how this bro’s “friend” is so understanding. Guy looks like he’s been through a meat grinder and his buddy is laughing hysterically the whole time.


How many chances should one guy get? Get this jackass out of here.



My crack staff here at Shoe: Untied recently came across the interesting story of my man Andras Toma, a Hungarian speaking bro who sat in a Russian nuthouse for 53-years because the medical staff there thought he was talking gibberish. True story, and I posted it in our “True Fact o’ the Day” series. Anyhoo, that whole sordid affair got me to thinking. Are there any other leftovers from World War II? With this is mind I put my best researcher, Hansi Rajapakse, on the case. Hansi is a young lass from Sri Lanka who knows her way around the internet like you would not dream. Hansi has a degree from the University of Sri Jayewardenepura, which I happen to know is a real place because I looked it up. Anyway, Hansi Rajapakse? Good. But enough about that little tech geek.

On to her findings, which are actually quite fascinating. Let us proceed . . .


Wait. What? The soft drink? Yes, that one. This pop made by The Coca-Cola fanta_12Company originated in Nazi Germany in 1941.  When Germany could no longer import Coca-Cola syrup from the USA due to the wartime trade embargo, the head of Coca-Cola Deutschland created a new product for the German market using only ingredients left over from German food production at the time.  Then, after the war, the Coca Cola Corporation regained control of the plant, formula and the trademarks to the new Fanta product. That’s wild, man.



german_anti-smoking_adCool factoid: German doctors were the first to identify the link between smoking and lung cancer, and it was Nazi Germany which led the first public anti-smoking campaign in modern history.  The Nazi regime conducted much research on the effects of smoking on health and introduced measures such as banning smoking on public transport, regulating it in public places, raising tobacco taxes, and imposing restrictions on tobacco advertising.  It also coined the term “passive smoking”. Germany’s anti-tobacco campaign was driven by Adolf Hitler’s personal distaste for tobacco.  He had been a heavy smoker in his early life (smoking 25-40 cigarettes daily) but gave up the habit. The German anti-smoking campaign collapsed along with the Third Reich in 1945 when American cigarette manufacturers quickly entered the German black market.  Later, as part of the Marshall Plan, the US sent tobacco to Germany free of charge.


uss-arizonaAt the time of the attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7th, 1941 the USS Arizona was fully loaded with nearly 1.5 million gallons of fuel in preparation for a scheduled trip from its base in Hawaii to the mainland.  It obviously never made the trip, being destroyed the next day in the surprise attack by bombers from the Japanese Navy.  Despite the fires fed by the oil that infamous day, around 500,000 gallons still lingers in the ship’s submerged wreckage. Over 70-years later it is still seeping out into the harbor at a rate of 9-quarts per day.  Despite environmental concerns, US government agencies are reluctant to perform extensive repairs to the Arizona due to it being classified as a war grave.  The oil that still coats the surface of the water surrounding the ship is referred to as the “Tears of the Arizona.” Sad, man.


In early 1945 the US government, anticipating a land invasion of Japan, heartordered a surge in the production of Purple Heart medals to cope with the mass casualties expected all the way through 1947.  Over 1.5 million were produced for the war effort during WWII.  The dropping of the atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and the subsequent Japanese surrender meant that they weren’t needed by that generation of soldiers – they were issued instead to their sons, grandsons and great-grandsons in the wars which followed in Korea, Vietnam, the Persian Gulf and Afghanistan. That’s good I guess?


frida_lyngstad_3Here’s a good one. Musical group ABBA’s Frida Lyngstad was one of thousands of children who grew up in Scandinavia shunned and persecuted as  “German children”, because they were the offspring of Norwegian mothers and occupying German soldier fathers. Frida was born in a small village in northern Norway in November 1945, the result of a liaison between her mother, Synni, and a German named Alfred Haase.  Frida’s mother and grandmother were branded as traitors by their community and were forced to moved to Sweden in 1947, where Frida’s mother died of kidney failure a short time later. Frida was brought up by her grandmother in Sweden believing that her father had died during the war on his way back to Germany as his ship was reported to have sunk.  However, at the height of ABBA’s fame in 1977 a German teen magazine published Frida’s complete biography, where it was seen by her half-brother, Peter Haase, who asked his father if he had been in Frida’s village during the war.  A few months later, Frida met her father in Stockholm for the first time. Crazy story.


For a few weeks every year in autumn and spring, the leaves on a patch of forest-swastikaLarch trees within a pine forest in Brandenburg, northeastern Germany would change color.  The yellow larch leaves would contrast with the deep green of the pines and create the distinct shape of a swastika.  The “Forest Swastika” went largely unnoticed until 1992, when the reunified German government ordered aerial surveys of all state-owned land.  It is thought a forester may have invited local Hitler Youth members to plant the trees in commemoration of Adolf Hitler’s birthday.  Authorities, concerned that the site might become a place of pilgrimage for neo-Nazis, eventually obscured the design in 2000 with the felling of a number of the Larch trees.

So there ya go. If you enjoyed this you can thank Hansi in the comments section.

The last WW2 POW to be repatriated was a Hungarian soldier named Andras Toma who sat in a Russian mental hospital for 53-years before a linguist realized that he wasn’t actually talking gibberish.



I’m dyin’ over here.


Vice News  Let’s face it: most of us swear. Some of us do so more than swear-wordothers. But while it’s generally frowned upon to be a foul-mouthed in public, new science is telling us that people who curse a lot actually might be more honest and trustworthy than those who stick to a conservative vocabulary.

According to a joint study titled “Frankly, We Do Give a Damn”—published by the University of Cambridge, Stanford University, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, and Maastricht University this month—cursing, both online and in real life, is heavily associated with honesty because honest people get emotional, and emotional people swear.

Well, der. I didn’t need science to tell me this one. Of course people who cuss like sailors are more honest. Show me a person who doesn’t drop f-bombs all over the joint and I’ll show you a dishonest, thieving, no account ne’re-do-well. Way to waste a bunch of money, University of Cambridge, Stanford University, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, and Maastricht University. You could have saved your cash and called me, you dumb a$+hole s*ns-a-b+tches.

Note: Seriously, who comes up with this garbage anyway? Don’t these people have more important subjects to study? Good Lord.

Note 2: According to this study my former college buddy Frank is the most honest person this earth has ever harbored, and he spent 4 and 1/2 years in the slammer for fraud. Science schmience.


A study sent 12-fake patients to psychiatric hospitals and all but 1 were diagnosed with schizophrenia. After the study’s publication, an offended hospital challenged the author to fool them. He agreed. The hospital then diagnosed 21% of incoming patients as fakes. In reality, he sent no patients at all.