So it turns out I've been accidentally writing for this other blog for the past few months and didn't realize it . . . my bad (side note: check out http://wheres-rick.blogspot.com/ for all of the lost Side Bar posts). What's that? No sale? OK, fair enough. Ummm . . . how about this: I so thoroughly enjoy the "Friday Classic Video" that I figured Where's Luke™ was chugging along fine without me, and that I would just sit back and watch this well-oiled machine hum. No? Okay, you're right, I don't even believe that one.
Last try . . . Meaghan and I have this baby now, and me and the baby have been on a totally sick bender for like three weeks.
OK, fine. The real reason I've been absent from the blogosphere (side note: worst. word. ever.) is the same reason I have been generally absent from any semblance of a social life for the past few months -- is that I've been getting, a-hem, hammered (side note: that was for you OB) at work.
People generally have mixed reactions when you tell them that you can't do something because work has gotten in the way, especially when the plans being cancelled occur later in the evening or on a weekend. Some feel legitimately badly for you, which is nice. Many feign sympathy, but generally believe (as I do) that if you choose a profession that demands long hours, you shouldn't bitch about it all the time (as, alas, I also do). I have no problem with these people (side note: though, in fairness, they should consider walking a mile).
Others, though, simply do not believe it, and either explicitly or implicitly call you a liar. It's mostly implicit, like asking all sorts of questions to try and trip you up when you tell someone you worked the entire weekend, or very late into the evening, etc. Many of these people have never worked past 5:01 or on a weekend in their entire life, and therefore cannot comprehend that others do. These people drive me fucking nuts. Let's say I cancel plans with a friend from college because I am called into the office on a Saturday. Let's say I see that same friend a few weeks later, and comment what a great game the Mets had on the offending Saturday. Suddenly, everyone is Clarence fucking Darrow, and they want to cross examine you. "Oh, I thought you were working on Saturday." "How did you have time to watch the Mets if you couldn't hang out?"
Shut. The. Fuck. Up.
Maybe I checked the score on the website. Maybe I took an hour lunch to watch the game. Maybe I worked all day and was tired and watched the game when I got home. Point is, if I cancel plans on a friend, they should generally assume (as most do) that I would prefer to be socializing with them as opposed to working, and not generally assume (as a few do) that I have cooked-up some scheme to avoid hanging out with them. If I don't want to hang out with you I just wouldn't make plans with you in the first place. Idiot.
I guess that became more of a rant than I meant it to be, and I am sure someone with a degree in counseling (batter up, D) could analyze the above and find all sorts of guilt/resentment/bitterness lurking just beneath the surface, but I digress.
My absence from the blogging world (side note: doubtfully my last, hopefully my longest) now explained, I have some catching up to do (side note: I just realized now, in re-reading this post, that the banner on the website changed. Very funny. Ha ha. You guys are the best. I think we can all agree, though, that it wouldn't have sounded nearly as melodic and hilarious if Mary had said "Wheeeere's side bar?" instead of the now infamous "Wheeeere's Luke?"). It has been a month and two days since my last post (side note: in which he discovers that Ace of the "Ambiguously Gay Duo" and Stephen Colbert were one and the same person (side note to the side note: five points for the movie reference)), and much has happened. Since I gather that everyone has been dying to know what I think about the goings-on in sports, news, politics and pop culture, I present my thumbs up and thumbs down for the past month. Here they are, in no particular order:
Thumbs Up go to . . . The Mets. After getting swept by the Phillies in an awful four-game series in Philadelphia, the Mets rebounded nicely winning eight of nine, and putting the division out of reach barring all but the most horrendous of September collapses (side note: chance of me lamenting this post -- and Open Bar cursing me for the jink -- three weeks from today: 2:1. Place your bets now).
Updated (9/18/2007). Ok, well, if you took the bet then, arguably, you lost, since it didn't take three weeks, only one. The Mets are 1-5 since this post was published, and the Phillies haven't lost since [insert witty, exaggerated reference here]. The Mets now lead the division by a mere 2.5 games. While they should still make the playoffs (assuming the Mets can go 7-6 over the next two weeks, the Phillies would need to go 9-3 just to force a one-game playoff, which might not even happen, as 9-3 could land the wild card in the NL East, in which case there would be no playoff), but it was borderline unthinkable a week ago that we would even need to be doing these calculations. Ugh. Always remember Raymond Parking (anyone? 25 blogger points to the winner).
Thumbs Down go to . . . . the White People of Jena, Louisiana. I admit to only recently getting informed on this story, but this is some old school, 1930's, no holds barred, unadulterated, unapologetic racist shit. I am sure there are black people out there who experience some form of racism every day, or at least with some frequency, and who aren't as shocked by this as me, but I definitely am guilty (if that's the right word) of thinking that this kind of off the reservation shit doesn't go on anymore.
Thumbs Down go to . . . Michael Vick. Dear God. Next.
Thumbs Down go to . . . Tikki Barber: Ok, Open Bar beat me to this, but it bears repeating. Tikki has spent the past month beating up on the oh-so-unimposing Giants, and has made some headlines doing so. What a hack. It's bad enough that you sell your team out in mid-season to announce your retirement. Whatever, if you want to retire, it's your right. But to start poking the Giants in the eye after the fact is just bush league. Have you seen any of his interviews on the Today show? (side note: f off; it's on at the gym in the morning). They won't let him do his own . . . he has to sit there with Matt Lauer or Meredith Viera kind of lurking over him to make sure he doesn't completely fuck it up. Hey Tikki: when I want the inspiring four-and-a-half minute story of a 90 year-old from Duluth who lost his eyesight but overcame the odds and realized his dream of owning a jukebox, I'll give you a call. For now, just be quiet. You made this bed, now lie in it Tikki Cronkite.
Thumbs Up go to . . . Fox News: Never mind the war in Iraq, the disgrace of Republican congressmen, or the financial crisis paralyzing the credit markets, Fox reports, and we get to decide, on a new Hardees ad that, at least according to one teacher's association, is demeaning to female teachers. Yeah, so, Fox News, hard-hitting and titillating. This is the source for middle-America's news and political views? Game over.