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Cheating In A Marathon

12 Oct

I have run three marathons in my life.  As far as performance goes, let’s just say I finished all three and leave it at that.   Check out this tale about a British marathon runner caught cheating recently.

British Runner Admits To Cheating

Admittedly, I would strongly have considered this option if it was made available in all three races I participated in.  Problem is, there weren’t any busses in sight, and I didn’t think before hand to carry bus fare.

 

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I’m Back Baby! Summer Vacation Recap: Day One

5 Jul

Don’t worry Ants!  I made it back safe and sound.  I have decided to give you the vacation recap in a daily format to keep you on the edge of your seats.  Here’s day one:

The summer vacation was a great success.  The Adam Family (They’re creepy and they’re kooky, Mysterious and spooky, They’re all together ooky,The Adam Family) packed up the family Camry and ventured up north to Wisconsin.

We were accompanied by our good friends, Spirit, Jen-ny, Niner, and “Sweet” Caroline.  Two families, four kids total, ages 4-9.  Definitely a group ready for trouble.

Day One

The first day was a travel day.  On our way up to Madison, Wisconsin we took a detour and stopped by the Jelly Belly factory, located close to Milwaukee.

As I entered the building I had visions of a tour very similar to the one on Charlie and The Chocolate Factory.  Chocolate rivers, trees made of candy, fat spoiled girls turning into plums, and of course Oompa Loompas.

Much to my dismay, none of these things were present.  There were plenty of portraits of U.S. Presidents made out of Jelly Beans, and lots of thrilling videos to watch.  However, nary an Oompa Loompa was found.

We arrived at our destination, Jen-ny’s parent’s house, safe and sound.  We were warmly greeted with margaritas and a fine meal!

The meal consisted of pasta and Italian gravy, which I later found out is simply what Italians call spaghetti sauce.  I still have yet to figure that one out.  The amazing taste of dinner soon helped me forget about my confusion.

Quarterback Challenge

Prior to dinner, Spirit and I participated in one of our favorite past times,  the Quarterback Challenge.

What is a quarterback challenge you ask?

You see, when men get to be middle-aged we tend to invent stupid things to do, that in our minds, show off the athletic ability we still have.

Two years ago, Spirit and I invented the Quarterback Challenge.  It takes a minimum of two players, a football of some sort (preferably one that whistles), and a park (the more playground equipment the better).

The game is simple.  One player comes up with a challenging throw that has to hit a particular target on the playground.  Normally, you have to throw the ball through small openings and such to hit your target.

Each player gets ten throws to accomplish the task.  It is a lot like horse.

This contest was the  most pitiful performance of my career.  It was the first time we allowed my nine-year old son to play with us.  His spiral that hit the dinosaur teeter-totter square on the face clinched my last place finish.  Demoralizing……..

>What to Do When Life In The Sports World Is Slow

1 Mar

>Be honest, you don’t really care what Tim Tebow’s vertical was at the NFL combine. It’s times like these I  look to other avenues for entertainment.

Sometimes these opportunities come to you during the oddest circumstances. My source for the day came during my first live chat with a service technician about our malfunctioning oven.  Enjoy the actual transcript from my exchange below.

Some names may have been altered to protect the innocent.

Please wait while we find an agent to assist you…
You have been connected to Gary Martin. 


Gary Martin: Thank you for choosing XXXXX. My name is Gary. How may I assist you?
Adam: Hello Gary. We have a 7 year old GE Spectra that no longer works after trying to broil a meal, and the broiler spontaneously caught fire. The stove top still works but oven does not. Any thoughts?
Gary Martin: I am sorry that the oven is not working, I am not technically qualified, however, I will be glad to help you schedule a service appointment,.
Gary Martin: May I have your phone number beginning with the area code along with your e-mail address please?
Adam: How much is a service call?
Gary Martin: Let me check the cost for the service appointment.
Gary Martin: Is it an oven with the range?
Adam: Yes. Stove top works, oven does not.
Gary Martin: Thank you for the information.
Gary Martin: May I have your zip code to check the charge?
Adam: xxxxx  

At this point Gary took an abnormally long time to check the charge, and I became concerned for his well being.
  
 Adam: Gary! Gary! Are you still there?
Gary Martin: I am sorry for the delay in responding.
Gary Martin: I am checking on the cost for the service appointment.
Adam: Whew

>Lo Siento

20 Feb

>

By now you are well aware of my thoughts on how necessary an apology is from the world’s greatest golfer. Unless you’ve been hiding under a rock you are aware that our friend, Eldrick Woods, has provided us with another useless public apology.   I still haven’t watched a second of Tiger’s statement and have no desire to. 

Along with Eldrick, we had two other public apologies this week.  Mark McGuire aplogized, again, for using steroids. Even the media wasn’t immune to sharing their regrets as Pardon The Interruption’s Tony Kornheiser had to apologize to fellow ESPN employee Hannah Storm for the following statement;

Hannah Storm in a horrifying, horrifying outfit today. She’s got on red go-go boots and a catholic school plaid skirt … way too short for somebody in her 40s or maybe early 50s by now. She’s got on her typically very, very tight shirt. She looks like she has sausage casing wrapping around her upper body … I know she’s very good, and I’m not supposed to be critical of ESPN people, so I won’t … but Hannah Storm … come on now! Stop! What are you doing?

This is getting borderline ridiculous.  Stop me if I’m wrong here but aren’t apologies more sincere when given in a one on one conversation between the offender and victim of the offense?  Maybe that’s the old school way of doing things.  The next time I screw up at work I am going to take a full page add out in the paper and issue my apology on my employer’s website.  I don’t want anyone thinking that I don’t mean it. 

All of these mia culpas got me thinking and I’ve come up with a rating system for public apologies.  It is based on all of the times I was told by my parents to “apologize like I mean it”.  I call it the Mommy Daddy Scale.  It is a simple scale where a one is equivalent to the completely insincere I’m only apologizing because I have to apology.  We’ve all been there.  You get caught pelting your brother with toy matchbox cars because he took your favorite one.  You know he deserved the pelting and he knows he deserved the pelting but you were the one that got caught winging metal projectiles at your brother and now you have to show regret for it.   A 10 is a true heart felt I’m sorry that any parent would be proud of.

I’ve scoured the internet for two clips so we can test the scale.  Let’s start with Chris Brown.  He provides a perfect model for the celebrity “I’ve done something wrong in a very private way but I need to publicly apologize to try and save face” apology.

I’ll give this apology a three.  He actually comes across somewhat sincere but it still has a feeling of artificial preparation.  Don’t be fooled. The motivation for this isn’t to let Rhianna know how sorry he is.   The sole motivation for this effort is to try and clean up his reputation to the public so we download his next single in iTunes.  

Next up is an example of one of the few times the public apology actually comes across as genuine.  I find it funny that after watching a number of videos I found a good model from the Ultimate Fighting Championship.  Here’s Brock Lesnar apologizing for his behavior after a fight.

I give this a nine.  This was pretty sincere and you can tell he was speaking the truth.  He didn’t make any excuses even admitting the fact that he is sore loser.  Nicely done Brock.

To end everything I wanted to share this great montage of apologies provided by Countdown with Keith Olberman. Give it a shot and try to rank every apology on this video using the Mommy Daddy Scale.

>Photo of The Week

15 Feb

>

 
I was trying my best to catch up on this weekend’s activities when I stumbled across this picture.  What exactly is the guy on the left’s job?  Hopefully he was not responsible for inspecting the track prior to the race. 

Well Gollly?!  How’d That Get There?!

If that’s  the case he probably had to turn in his killer uniform complete with awesome fanny pack as race officials accepted his resignation.   
My guess is he is the halftime entertainment.  NASCAR has halftime right?  Maybe he is a random fan that wondered on the track as he was listening to his favorite pit crew on his race scanner.
As soon as I saw this picture I thought of one movie.  That’s right, Spaceballs.  Killer Fanny Pack Dude reminds me of the “Combing The Desert Scene”.  Think back….now just reverse his helmet color and you’re there.  For those of you who can’t remember, I figured I’d help out.  Enjoy.
 

>The Wussification of America Part 2: Dogeball Today

29 Jan

>If you’re like me it’s been a few years since your last college class.  I hate to do this but it’s for your own good.  Before going further, your required reading for this post is The Wussification of Amercia Part 1.  Enjoy. 

Now that you’ve refreshed yourself on the finer point of our favorite childhood game, let’s look at today’s version.

The Equipment:  Gone is the red rubber ball that we so dearly loved.  It has been replaced by a combination volley/Nerf ball.  Admittedly, it is an amazing creation.  You can stand three feet away and throw it as hard as you can at anyone’s face and it doesn’t hurt them.  Don’t get me wrong, kids still cry when they are on the receiving end of a face shot.  Their tears, however, come from the fact that the face shot scared them and the person that threw it IS MEAN!.  We cried because it was very likely that we received a mild concussion thanks to the red special.

The Rules:  These haven’t changed a great deal.  The enforcement of the rules has taken on a whole new life of its own.  You are likely to see three to five referees that call every infraction if are lucky to stumble across a game.  These caring, warm, gentle, overbearing, helicopter, adults think they are protecting the kids.  However, they are actually doing irreparable damage to the kids’ ability to solve problems (He was out!  No in!  Out!  No in!).

Skills Developed:  The physical skills, speed, agility, etc are still developed.  Kids today are a tad bit heavier so the game is played at a far slower pace.  Helpful parenting tip:  Maybe you shouldn’t feed your kid a  44 ounce fountain drink after school every day.  It kind of makes them beefy.  The travesty lies within the fact that the kids are not developing survival tactics anymore.  If something happens on the court that seems unfair or mean, chances are some “responsible” adult is right there to make everything all better.  Our kids don’t have to think or fend for themselves.

These days it’s hard to find a game in town, especially on the school playground or gymnasium.  When you do it is a watered down version of what made the game so great.  Who knew mild concussions helped develop us into the fine upstanding adults we are today?

I couldn’t possibly write about dodgeball without sharing some video of the movie.

>Band Wagon Jumping or Climbing

26 Jan

>

Sunday night  I logged onto Facebook to see all of my friends posting about the Indianapolis Colts victory over the New York Jets in the AFC Championship.  After several hours of these repetitive messages (possibly another topic here…..) I started to see a couple of comments from die hard fans that were frustrated with a great deal of jumping on the proverbial band wagon.  The hamster in the old wheel started spinning and upon request (this one’s for you J Schack) I started examining what criteria justify a ticket on the Band Wagon. 

Approved Admittance 


1.  EMINENT DOMAIN

Individuals that live in the state or two hours away from the city of the team you wish to root for are permitted.  Anyone living in the Dakotas, Hawaii, Alaska or other remote states may pick the closest team or team they grew up with.  Those who recently moved from another town have a two year grace period in which they must prove their actual fandom by fulfilling the following requirements:

A.  All old team’s jerseys and paraphernalia must be removed from their home, vehicles, and office
B.  They must be able to name the current starting lineup, top five players of all time, the team’s coach or manager, and the name of the home field, stadium, or arena of their newly adopted team
C.  They must host a minimum of two parties (5 or more people) to watch their new favorite team play a game

2.  ENOUGH IS ENOUGH ALREADY

Current fans of the following teams may jump ship at any time:  LA Clippers, Oakland Raiders, Pittsburgh Pirates, Kansas City Royals, Detroit Lions, Minnesota Timberwolves, or the New Jersey Nets.  These teams have never been relevant (Clippers), have not been relevant in what seems to be a lifetime (Lions), or they are flat out not trying (Pirates).  I would add some hockey teams here but I’m not sure if the NHL still exists.  I know they play a game every winter at an old baseball field but I’m not sure that qualifies as a season.

Let’s use the old Oregon Trail analogy here.  We all played that game as kids and inevitably came across the river that we had to cross.  The wagon was hitched, your oxen were ready to pull, your supplies were bundled, and your eight to ten kids were ready for the crossing. Sometimes the wagon started to go down becasue the river was too deep.  You wound up losing a few oxen, maybe a child or two, and some supplies.  You can’t expect everyone to go down with the sinking wagon.  No one would make it to Oregon.  That would be a travesty.  We would never have those ugly green and yellow jerseys to make fun of.

3.  NEW TO THE GAME

Not everyone is a sports fan at birth.  This category is solely for those late bloomers that don’t already have a team.  Be careful with this one, some wagon jumpers attempt to claim that “I never really had a favorite team before.” 

Are Casual Fans That Up Their Commitment Jumping?

These people pose the ultimate question when debating the Band Wagon Jumper.  They haven’t necessarily jumped from another wagon.  They more than likely didn’t pay much attention to the sport to begin with until the excitement of a playoff run sucked them in.  

Upon further review……Average Adam says they are not band wagon jumpers.  They are more like band wagon climbers when the wagon has stopped for a bit.  They enjoy the music the band is playing but only time will tell if they are on the wagon for the long haul.  True fans stay on even when the band is out of tune and needs its instruments replaced.