Sunday, April 27, 2008

Some links

I Love Bacon
Mental Floss
Inappropriately Named Sports Teams (Maxim)

Summer Concert Series

In what Tim is now calling the Summer of Rock, I put together a nice little stretch of Van Halen on Thursday, followed by the Wedding Singer musical and Jimmy Buffett and the Coral Reefers on Saturday.

I'm going to skip talking about the Wedding Singer because it was lame and not worth it. On to Jimmy Buffett!

What a gorgeous night for a concert. Temps were moderate and there was supposed to be heavy storms, but they held off and allowed us to enjoy a concert that has to be held outdoors.

I've never been to a Buffett concert, and let me be cliche' and say it was quite the concert. I knew about half of the songs (Tami knew more). The seats were fantastic! Very close to the stage. The thing that blew me away the most was the crowd. Parrotheads are a devoted and fun bunch. There must have been hundreds of beach balls being bounced around the stadium and there was also no shortage of beverages in the house.

The true experience was to be in the parking lot before the show tailgating. We arrived too late to get the full experience (who knew there were two stadiums in Frisco? Oh, everybody? well, I'm sorry that I didn't know there was a difference between Dr. Pepper and Pizza Hut Parks), but the couple behind us started at noon and knew people who had gotten there at 8am. The only fun part about leaving the concert was watching severely inebriated parrotheads stumbling to their cars.

I truly enjoyed myself tonight and over the whole weekend.

Saturday, April 26, 2008

A Van Halen review that is too in-depth for the readers of this blog

Finally, after 25 years of listening to Van Halen, after seeing Van Hagar five times and after waiting through a six week cancellation, I finally got to see the original Van Halen. Well, except for no Michael Anthony.

Here are some pictures from the concert.

First rant - The bass parts on Van Halen songs are not difficult. I have a hard time defending Michael Anthony's bass playing ability when it comes up in conversation, but he made his mark with two things:

Wolfgang Van Halen is a talented bass player, but there was definitely something missing from the show, and that was the showman, Michael Anthony. Wolf was technically very sound, but stood there like a tree. Zero stage presence. I know he's only 17, and I get that, but if Mad Mike was there, the energy level at the show would have been much higher. You always need a guy to chug a bottle of Jack to make the concert better. The good news was there was no need for a bass solo.

I told Tim, I can't believe (Van Halen) replaced their mediocre, fat bass player with a mediocre fat bass player.

Second rant - Who spends $150 on tickets (each) and then brings an eight-year-old girl to a Van Halen concert? I had four girls sitting behind me, giggling every time DLR said a cuss word, screaming at a pitch that only Buckley could hear, and generally just killing the vibe at the concert. Some concerts are family friendly and some are not. This was one that was not. So thank you guy who brought your eight-year-old, the adults really appreciate it.

Now some good times

Wow, what a show! For a hardcore VH fan, it had everything I could ask for. I truly believe that this is as close I'm ever going to get to a religious experience. I was absolutely giddy at times and jumping and shouting like...well, an eight-year-old girl. But I knew all the words, and could appreciate the music. I did that devil horns thing with my hands, which to my knowledge, may have been the first time for a concert. It might be entertaining to see an iso-cam on me during the concert.

When you look at the set list, they played all of their hits (Jump, Running With the Devil, Pretty Woman, etc.), but they also went deeper with Somebody Get Me a Doctor, So This is Love?, Romeo's Delight and Little Guitars. The only clunker song was Little Dreamer, which isn't popular and pretty much sucks.

A surprisingly cut and flamboyant David Lee Roth was exactly what I expected. Several years ago, Eddie Van Halen mentioned that he didn't want DLR to tour because he couldn't hit high notes anymore. That's true, but you know what? That's OK because you couldn't really hear him to begin with. And he's ancient. But he still had enough to carry the show and be the guy that runs around the stage having fun. He surprised me with a mini-guitar solo leading into Ice Cream Man.

Alex Van Halen really brought it. His solo was incredible, and as always, didn't overplay.

Eddie Van Halen moved off of my death list, but not by much. Technically, he played a flawless show. He looked engaged and glad to play. He had a couple of exchanges with DLR where they challenged each other with singing/guitar riffs. That was pretty cool. His guitar solo was also really, really good but it seemed short. He didn't move much around the stage, but that really didn't bother me. His overall grade for me would be a B.

Overall, I'm so glad I went. I would have regretted not seeing David Lee Roth and the chance to catch Van Halen one more time (probably). The seats were good, but I could have sat closer. It wasn't sold out, but the place definitely was full. You'll be happy to know that this will be my last VH post for awhile.

Here's the set list they played:

01. You Really Got Me
02. I'm the One
03. Runnin' With the Devil
04. Romeo Delight
05. Somebody Get Me a Doctor
06. Beautiful Girls
07. Dance the Night Away
08. Atomic Punk
09. Everybody Wants Some
10. So This Is Love?
11. Mean Street
12. Pretty Woman
13. Drum Solo
14. Unchained
15. I'll Wait
16. And the Cradle Will Rock
17. Hot for Teacher
18. Little Dreamer
19. Little Guitars
20. Jamie's Cryin'
21. Ice Cream Man
22. Panama
23. Guitar Solo
24. Ain't Talkin' 'Bout Love
25. 1984
26. Jump

Monday, April 21, 2008

Van Halen is back on tour

The logo above is a special logo I built for Tim's website VeryCarr

Van Halen played their first gig of their postponed tour in Reno last Thursday. Here are some pictures from that show.

They then played a show on Saturday in Las Vegas for a Tiger Woods event. Here is video from that event.

One more show on Tuesday in Cincinnati before their Thursday show in Dallas. Despite what the poll says, I would bet on them playing at the AAC on Thursday. Thankfully, the Dallas show is early on in the rescheduled tour. If the show was in late May or June, I'd be extremely worried.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

More Puerto Vallarta pictures

These photos are courtesy of our friends Chuck and Barbie (their real names, at least that's what they told us). Click to see larger pictures.

Possibly a drunk person took this picture

Four happy folks (at least one hungover)

Shot in the pool

The swim-up bar

The island in the pool

Puerto Vallarta skyline

Shot from the beach

Same columns from the other side

View of pool from the room

Shot of resort at sunset

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Ron Washington is a fraud

Ron is a teacher and winner who brings a great deal of integrity to our organization," said Daniels. "He is a straight-forward, energetic baseball man who we're excited to have lead the Rangers." - Jon Daniels, Texas Rangers GM

During his time with the A's, he helped Oakland lead the league in the fielding percentage in 2004 and 2005. Over the last five seasons Oakland posted the third-best fielding percentage in the league. - Texas Rangers press release, October 2006

Washington was supposed to bring the "Moneyball" philosophy to the Rangers, working pitch counts, moving runners over, strong defense, all of the small things that make a small market team competitive. Forget the fact that the Rangers are in the 5th largest market.

The Rangers lead the league in errors. Worst in the league in fielding percentage. Worst in the league with runners in scoring position. You get the idea.

The guy never once managed in the Major League, which is fine, except that he admits to learning the job on the fly. As did our 27-year-old GM. The franchise is a joke and will always be a joke. The greatest Ranger (Nolan) played for the team for five years, at the tail end of his career, which is 2 years less than two other teams. His fourth team he won a World Series with.

The Rangers are once again in last place, no direction, 21st highest payroll. Great to be a fan.

Saturday, April 12, 2008


(Careful, there are topless photos of Bill included)

We got back from Mexico on Thursday, and thank god we were not flying American. We looked into staying an extra day, but it just was not in the cards.

Funniest line of the trip goes to Tami at the airport. The maximum weight for the luggage is 50 lbs (or a $50 fine). Our suitcase weighed 52 lbs until Tami goes "Towel rack Homer". This is in reference to an old Simpsons episode:

The luggage actually weighed 48 lbs once I pulled my fat stomach off of it.

The resort was fantastic. Best place we've stayed in bar none. The restaurants at the resort all had great food, except there was little actual Mexican food. Great Italian food for some reason. The booze was plentiful and free...not a good combination. We took a trip to a Mexican water park where we got to hang with two sea lions, Pepe and Lulu. The swimming with dolphins is so played out. We were the only two hanging with the lions. Did I mention the booze was free?

Wish we could have stayed longer.

Saturday, April 05, 2008

Off until at least Friday

I'm flying to Puerto Vallarta, Mexico until Thursday. When I get back, I'll post pictures of the trip. Until then, enjoys these links:

Cousins of Ron Mexico
Ron Mexico
"The Mexican"
James Taylor in Concert - Mexico
The Night of the Iguana (this is where we are staying)
Van Halen
The White House

Bill's Book Corner

Chuck Klosterman IV: A Decade of Curious People and Dangerous Ideas by Chuck Klosterman

Chuck Klosterman is a generally considered a pop culture writer, who writes about sports, television and sex, was born in Minnesota and once wrote a book about hair bands from the 80s (Fargo Rock City), so I figured his books would be up my alley. After reading this book, I was not disappointed. 90% of the book was fantastic, and we'll focus on that for now.

The title is in reference to the fourth Led Zepplin album (Untitled but generally called Led Zepplin IV). The book is a collection of articles that he wrote for Spin, GQ and Esquire. He highlighted many of his chapters with introductions that posed hypothetical situations that got you thinking. The highlights of the book for me included the week he ate nothing but McDonalds chicken nuggets (a few years before Morgan Spurlock, and with much less drama) and the 24-hour marathon of VH1 Classic (when they were commercial-free and 95% videos) ***Book critic alert*** His knowledge of pop culture is spot-on and delivers an acerbic view of the world around us. ***Alert over***

Now the painful 10% part. For the last part of his book, that seemed to be a semi-autobiographical recant of some of his heavily drugged early years. It ends with a woman falling from the sky and crashing into his car, then having his psuedo-girlfriend come and pick him up.

Overall it was a very interesting read and I would recommend it.

Grade - B+

Thursday, April 03, 2008

Mark Cuban hates Irish bloggers

That's the only reason I could come up with as to why I was not invited to the Golden State/Dallas game last night. With Dirk coming back early from his high ankle sprain/knee sprain, it seemed like destiny for me to cover the game.

However, it was not meant to be. I never expected to go, but it would have been nice to get some kind of response from the Mavericks.

The win last night put Dallas in 7th place and a two game lead over 9th place Golden State (with the tiebreaker going to Dallas). Dallas has seven games remaining, so it seems more plausible that the Mavericks will sneak into the playoffs.

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

If you know you can't bowl, don't.

Now, I don't bowl very well, but I'm not running for president either. This is just plain embarrassing.

Barack Obama bowled a 37. Really... a 37? Yikes. I can't in good faith vote for someone who bowls a 37.

"My economic plan is better than my bowling," Obama told fellow bowlers Saturday.

"It has to be," a man called out.

Here's the video