Archive for September, 2019

Everyone had a Little Tikes Car, right? If you didn’t have one your kid did. Folks my age didn’t because they didn’t come out until 1969 and we had to build our own go-carts with wheels from our Radio Flyer Wagon and scraps from our garage. Anywho, that’s neither here nor there but it looked like this:

Well everyone that didn’t get the pleasure of having a Little Tikes Car, I have good news. They are now available in adult versions! You heard that right, and it gets even better – these babies can reach a cruising speed of 70 miles per hour. Check it!

Man, I can just see myself motoring down the highway in that bad boy, just impressing the hell out of everyone who crosses my path. Can’t. Wait. Sparky will love it.

PS- I may add a windshield. You know, because of bugs and birds and rain and whatnot.

Simply put, the NBA as we know it today wouldn’t exist without the ABA, or the American Basketball Association.

Formed in 1967 and lasting until 1976, the ABA played a flashy, distinct brand of basketball, one far different from what the NBA was playing at the same time. It had an awesome red, white and blue ball and 3-point shots (gasp!). And oh, by the way, it also featured the first slam dunk contest in 1976. The league only lasted a few seasons, but its impact on the game continues to this day. Four ABA franchises that merged into the NBA (the Brooklyn Nets, Denver Nuggets, Indiana Pacers and San Antonio Spurs) remain today. And those innovations like the three-point shot have continued to help the NBA evolve over time.

The league consisted mostly of players not quite good enough for the NBA, although they did swipe a few from the older league. Some great players that chose to play with the league were Julius “Dr. J” Erving, George “The Iceman” Gervin, Spencer Haywood, Dan Issel, Louie Dampier, and Rick Barry (who they signed away from the NBA). They also signed players that had been banned from the NBA for various reasons, great players like Doug Moe and the legendary Connie “The Hawk” Hawkins. Both were banned for alleged gambling violations that were never proven.

Although only four teams eventually merged into the NBA, the original ABA featured some really cool names and logos. Some still exist today. Check ’em out:

 

Here are some random photos from the American Basketball Association. Like I said, they played the game up-tempo and wide open, much like the NBA game is played today. At the time the NBA was a walk it up, pound the ball inside league. And man, that ball. The way it spun was almost magical. Ah, the memories.

Finally, for an in-depth look at the ABA I beseech you, dare I say implore you, to check out this video. Amazing stuff.

Man, I thought that Mallard was a goner. Little dude just did a deep dive evasive maneuver and popped up unscathed, swimmin’ around like he owned the joint, apex predator be damned. And that shark has to be the butt of jokes back at the shark bar, amirite? Even the Pygmy Sharks are cracking wise and making fun of him. Guy may want to get away for awhile until he has his pride back. Sad really.

So my sister and I have been cleaning out my Mom’s house and property and I found some boxes I’d stored in the pole barn. Some of them had all my old cassette tapes, and there were a lot. Like hundreds. And hundreds. And hundreds. Anyway, included were a lot of mix-tapes I’d made or that people had made for me, and man did they bring back a ton of memories. By the way, a couple of guys made me the large majority of tapes I’d been given, so thanks to Jed and Goose. They both helped form my musical tastes back in the 80s and 90s, the glory days of the mix-tape if you will. Included are quite a few bootlegs, mostly of R.E.M. that were somehow procured by the aforementioned Jed, Goose or myself. Anyway, I thought I might post just a few photos of the tapes because I know they’ll jog some memories of quite a few former students and friends. Let’s begin with those R.E.M. bootlegs.

Trust me, there are some rare recordings in there, and I bet not too many exist anymore. Stellar stuff.

Here are some other notables. Some aren’t actually mix-tapes but just copies of regular tapes. Since these were spread around to a lot of people, anyone recognize anything? Click to enlarge and scroll.

Memories, man.

Listen, if these damn nerds don’t stop creating more intelligent and athletic robots we’re all in trouble. You know how this turns out, right? Good God. Didn’t anybody see The Terminator? Westworld? The Stepford Wives? Demon Seed? Those fembots in Austin Powers: International Man Of Mystery? Come on man! These cyborgs are going to murder us all. WAKE UP NERDS!

Whew. Finally! I was wondering when someone was going to open the Flower of Life and find the Real Wave Conjugations. Thank God Terrance figured this all out because I was just talking to Sparky the other day about these very subjects. Terrance has really eased my mind. Can’t wait for his YouTube video.

PS- And everyone knows gravity isn’t real. Jordan proved that 30-years ago.

PPS- What the hell?

Check it. Click and scroll too see whole photo.

GearPatrol.com: Living Vehicle, a California-based luxury mobile home manufacturer, has unveiled its new 2020 Series trailer. The model is designed for full-time living and spending substantial time off the grid. It’s a luxury apartment on wheels — one that will minimize your energy consumption and water waste.

The 28-foot-long trailer offers 220-square feet of living space. Its design maximizes that by offering a lofted queen-sized bed that stores in the ceiling and a fold-out patio deck. Reconfiguring the dining area and opting for an optional fold-out Euro loft bed can increase the sleeping capacity to six.

Want to go off-the-grid and off-the-road? Living Vehicle can outfit the 2020 trailer for overlanding. The trailer has a steel-reinforced aluminum frame, a rear incline for an improved departure angle, and 16-inches of ground clearance. The “Off-Road Option Package” adds off-road tires, additional ground clearance, and a matte black body liner.

The cooking setup is versatile. The “Chef’s Kitchen” package adds an oven, a propane grill, an instant hot-water system, a dishwasher and an ever-critical six-bottle wine cooler. The trailer features a movable kitchen island, permitting outdoor cooking and improved flow within the living space.

Even if you are technically off the grid, Living Vehicle still has you set with multiple “Netflix and chill” options. The trailer comes standard with a WiFi source and a 42-inch 4K TV, and there’s an optional 70-inch home theater setup with a 4K projector.

Living Vehicle plans to produce a “small batch” of 25-trailers for the 2020 Series. Pricing for one starts at $199,995. That is expensive for a trailer (though on par with other luxury trailer options). But if you’re ready to embrace that full-on mobile life, it’s less expensive, better designed, and far better equipped than most apartments.

Lofted Queen-Size Bed? Check. Fold-Out Patio Deck? Of course. Chef’s Kitchen? Why not? Wine Cooler? Sure. WiFi source, 42-inch 4K T, and an an optional 70-inch home theater setup with a 4K projector? Duh. But hey, where’s the hot tub? Do you expect me to live like a damn hot tubless savage? Come on, Living Vehicle. You’re better’n’at. On the positive side, at $199,995 they’re practically giving these things away. Only 25 left kids! Get in line!

PS- Who even considers this camping? Last time I camped I pulled my $17 K-Mart Pup Tent from the hatch of my ’78 Ford Pinto, built a fire with limbs and a wadded up newspaper, stuck some dogs on a sharpened stick, popped a cold Stroh’s and went to town. Those were the days, man.

PPS- Pretty sure my little 2017 Hyundai Veloster could tow that beast with no problems. Veloster is a combination of velocity and roadster after all.

 

New Yorkers are nothing if not adaptable.

Today – Streetwear brand Bstroy is facing backlash after debuting their latest clothing collection.

The New York-based brand unveiled its spring 2020 collection at a fashion show earlier this week, and many Instagram users are calling some of the designs “disgusting” and “tasteless” in response. The garments at the center of the controversy? A series of sweatshirts embroidered with the names of several school shootings locations, including Sandy Hook, Columbine, Virginia Tech and Marjory Stoneman Douglas. Each of the sweatshirts features tattered details and distressing that resemble bullet holes.

Why? Who does this? Who buys this?

Listen, I’m about as open as they come where dark or off-color humor is concerned. My friends will tell you I’ve told jokes about many a touchy subject. I mean, to me there is no correlation between feeling empathy for something and your ability to laugh about it. That said, man does this make me cringe. Hey, I don’t know what my line is but I do know this clothing line crossed it. Here are some examples, but be warned. It’s tasteless, callous, stupid and reprehensible.

 

 

SOURCE – Pizza Hut finally found a new place to hide cheese… inside of a giant Cheez-It.

The pizza chain just announced the addition of a brand new item to their menu, called the Stuffed Cheez-It Pizza. It’s pretty much exactly what it sounds like.

The Stuffed Cheez-It Pizza was created after Pizza Hut realized that their largest fan base — college students — was also fond of Cheez-Its, according to a press release.

Now available nationwide, the new “pizza” looks like a giant Cheez-It, albeit stuffed with mozzarella cheese (pepperoni is also available). A single order comes with four large squares containing the mozzarella inside a cheese-baked crust. It also comes packed with a side of marinara sauce for dipping.

Sweet God Almighty. I promise you that there is no ocean I wouldn’t swim across, no mountain I wouldn’t climb, no fire I wouldn’t walk through to try the new Stuffed Cheez-It Pizza. Then again, there are a couple Huts within 12-miles of me so that’s not really necessary I guess. Anyway, how in the hell did it take someone this long to come up with this idea? I mean really? Pizza? Cheez-Its? ‘Tis a match made in heaven, man.

PS- In my exhaustive research I came across a recipe for Cheez-It Crusted Chicken Fingers and now I can’t stop thinking about it.

So yeah, I ran across this site called The Loon Preservation Committee and now I can’t get enough of loons, man. I swear I watched their Loon Cam for 7 1/2 hours straight last night. Just went into a trance like you read about. Anywho, the site has awesome links like “Mortality and Nest Failure”, “Loons and Lead”, and “Banding and Tracking Loons”. They even have a Loon Census and a link that shows you how to build Nest Rafts for Loons:


Dude, that’s a man-made Nest Raft for Loons. Cool. I guess nesting loons face a variety of challenges during their 27-day incubation of eggs. Loon nests are vulnerable to natural or human-induced water level changes that can flood nests or leave them stranded out of reach of parents, which makes me sad. Floating nest rafts rise and fall with water levels and help loons cope with these water level changes. Nest rafts also provide alternate nest sites to help loons displaced from traditional sites by shoreline development or recreational use of lakes, and offer protection from raccoons, eagles and other scavengers whose populations have increased due to the availability of human refuse.

They even have Loon Cruises up in New Hampshire on Squam Lake. The route of the cruise (which lasts 90-minutes) is chosen to maximize loon observations, because hell yes it does. Tickets are $27, which seems a little steep but how often do you get a chance to observe a loon up close? The answer is never, man. Can you say Bucket List?

Did you know that loons have solid bones, making them less buoyant? Because of this they are extremely powerful swimmers. They can also dive to depths of up to 200-feet for durations of up to 5-minutes which is freaking incredible. And get this – loons can achieve a flying speed of up to 80-miles per hour! Finally, the amazing loon can stay in the air for hundreds of miles in one flight! That’s crazy, dude.

And because their legs are located towards the back part of their bodies, it is very difficult for loons to walk or to take flight from land. In fact, it is often difficult for them to take off from water; the loon will usually need the help of wind. To take off, loons will need to use a runway – first they will figure out which way the wind is blowing, and then run straight into it while flapping their wings like a boss. Once they have enough air rushing beneath their wings, they can become airborne. Because of the loons need for a runway, they must be careful only to land in areas where there will be enough surface water for them to take off again.

You can find this and much more on the website. Here’s a link, because I know you’re dying to find out more about loons:

https://www.loon.org/

Enjoy!

And whether that level is upward or downward is entirely up to you. See, Cam wore this ensemble at his post-game presser last night and it set the internet ablaze. Some say he looked like the Queen of England, others say he resembled the wolf disguised as the grandmother in Little Red Riding Hood. He reminded me of Mother Goose but that’s just me. Cam had a terrible game, and afterwards he gave us this gem of a quote: “It’s time for me to look at myself in the mirror.” I agree Cam. I agree.

As of yesterday, San Francisco Giants manager Bruce Bochy had been a major league manager from 1995-2019. His career record? 1995-2019. Mind blown.

I’m sort of disappointed in Seagal.

Good stuff. Well, mostly.

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I’ve always been fascinated by abandoned places, whether they be houses, cars, or anything really. For instance, there’s something about looking at an old abandoned house and knowing that it was once someone’s dream, a place where maybe kids were running around, a home that somebody took great pride in but now it just sits there, overtaken by nature. Why did they leave? What happened? To me that’s very intriguing.

With that in mind, here are 12 photos of abandoned places that I particularly like. I hope you like them too.

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Barley Pops per state.

Oh my.

According to data gathered on all 50-states by the National Federation of State High Schools Association, more girls are playing on boys football teams than ever before. For the 2018-2019 school year 2,404 girls played 11-man tackle football on boys teams at the high school level. That’s more than has ever been recorded in the NFHSA’s history.

Hell of a grab, man. Reminds me of the pizza guy and umbrella guy who made those great saves awhile back. Good stuff.

I know, I know. Another blog about words. Deal with it. What follows are several examples of weird idiosyncrasies in the English language. Mind blowing stuff, man. Trust me on this one.

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Big word guy here. Everyone knows that. I’ve written several blogs about words, including the classics William Shakespeare, Rad Bro of Avon and Inventor of Words, 7 Redundancies We Need To Eliminate, Moving Forward, Allow Me To Reiterate, A Message To Social Media Users, 11 Examples of Why We Should Let Kids Name Stuff, Mispronounced Words: My Top 10, My 15 Favorite Palindromes, Here Are Some Words That Need To Make A Comeback, Word Up! Snorkel, Curds and Uranus and the legendary Cool Beans! Words and Phrases That Need to Make a Comeback.

So yeah, a lot.

And I once had a kid claim that “dude” was a word that only young folk should use, so of course I had to point out to him that it’s been around for at least 150-years, and that it was even used with regularity back in the stone age when I was in high school. And yes, I wrote about that too, in the blog The Etymology of Dude. 

Which brings me to today’s little piece about words that are older than you think. Let us proceed . . .

HIPSTER

Seriously. “Hipster” shows up in the 1941 Dictionary of Hash House Lingo (yes there was such a thing) and it meant “a know-it-all.” The words hip and hep had been around since the early 1900s, meaning being up on the latest and knowing what’s what. And by the way, I’m old enough to remember beatniks being called hep cats. God I’m old.

UNFRIEND

Think “unfriend” is a word brought upon us by Facebook? Naw. It’s been around a long time. It shows up in this example from 1659: “I Hope, Sir, that we are not mutually Un-friended by this Difference which hath happened betwixt us.” Cool. On a related note, if you don’t think I’m going to use the word “betwixt” henceforth you’re out of your gourd.

HANG OUT

Hang out has been used as a verb for passing the time since at least the 1830s. In the Pickwick Papers Charles Dickens wrote: “I say, old boy, where do you hang out?” True story.

PUKE

Puke has been around since the 16th century, man. The word, not actual puke. That’s been around forever. Anyway, while it is often claimed that Shakespeare invented the term, puke has been found in earlier sources. It meant then what it means now, to vomit. To hurl. Barf. Heave. Spew. Upchuck. You get the picture. But it also used to be a causative verb, meaning to make someone vomit with a tonic or potion. Your doctor might have you purged, bled, and puked for your own good. That’s disgusting, but I get it. Sometimes puking does make you feel better.

FUNKY

Funky was used as a term describing music back in the 1930s, but the “strong smell” meaning has been around long before that. Since the 1600s funk was slang for the stale smell of tobacco smoke, and by extension, anything that stank. Cheeses, rooms, hobos, and especially ship’s quarters could be described as “funky.” And oh by the way, I saw Wild Cherry perform “Play That Funky Music (White Boy)” on High Street in Columbus, Ohio 6-months before they hit it big. Boom.

FRIGGING

Wait, what you say? I kid you not. Frigging has been around since the late 1500s and has served as the more family-friendly substitute for that other F-word. Check out this 1943 quote, man:  “This shunting frigging new arrangement has got every flaming thing foxed up.” People used to talk way cooler than they do now, amirite?

LEGIT

Legit as a shortening of legitimate has been around since the 1890s. It started as theater slang for things associated with legitimate (as opposed to vaudeville or burlesque) theater. From the 1920s on, it referred to underworld or shady occupations or places. If you were “on the legit” you were being honest. Kewl.

So there ya go. Words that are older than you thought they were. I hope you learned something today, kids.

 

 

 

(Travel And Leisure)–The Von Braun Rotating Space Station will likely be the first commercial space station in history. It is due to be completed in 2025, and some people are already calling it the first space hotel in history. Alatorre spoke to Dezeen about the design for the space station, making it sound like the world’s most futuristic and luxurious getaway. The station will have “many of the things you see on cruise ships: restaurants, bars, musical concerts, movie screenings, and educational seminars,” Alatorre said.

Hotel visitors will have fancier technology than what’s on board the International Space Station (ISS). Space tourists will have toilets and showers that function more like what’s on Earth. Drinking water will be brought from our planet and non-potable water will be recycled throughout the station.

Eh, I can’t tell you I’m on board with this. I’ve never been a big space guy so I’m a little ambivalent. I mean, that’s a cool view and all but how long could you look out at space or the earth before you got bored? And you’d only have that cool earth view half the time at the least, right? Or maybe you could see it from either side of the spaceship, I don’t know. I was never a Star Trek guy. Plus there’s the whole possibility of dying thing. That’s always a negative. Anywho, hard pass for me.

PS- Watch that video below. Wild stuff, man.

PPS- The thing is named after Wernher Von Braun, who was influential in building the USA space program. Cool.

PPPS- He was also a Nazi. Not cool.

Ladies and Gentlemen, I give you the Shoal Tent, the inflatable tent that allows you to suffer a grisly death on a river, creek, pond, or lake while camping. Because really kids, isn’t it everyone’s dream to doze off whilst drifting lazily down a river, come upon a sharp-edged rock and awake in a wet blackness as your nylon tent engulfs and entombs you as you sink to your watery grave to be eaten by a Bullhead Catfish?

Seriously, do you just float away in this death-trap or are you anchored to a tree or something? And how do you go to the, you know, bathroom? Can you imagine trying to steer that thing? Imagine stepping from your Floating Tent o’ Death to your canoe or vice versa. What could go wrong? And dude, is this is a Door Dash for bears or what? Yeesh. I can see a couple grizzlies spotting this baby floating downstream and one of them saying, “Oh look. Lunch is here.”

PS- The Shoal Tent us currently on backorder, so if you want to go to sleep on a river and never wake up you’ll need to wait at least six weeks.

PPS- Waterfalls and/or rapids. 

PPPS- This was largely stolen from the website Deadspin.

Well, you can’t question his enthusiasm.

PS- The Jackson State mascot is named Wavee Dave. Awesome.