Jimmy Kimmel at the 2012 White House Correspondents’ Dinner

Highlights

0:00  Unnecessary Censorship: Crass, brash and crude, a Jimmy Kimmel trademark and a great way to kick things off.

3:36  Michelle Obama’s reaction to ‘big ear joke.’  Awesome.

5:40  Mark this Obama smile, this is the ‘oh, f*ck you’ smile.

7:40  Chris Christie fat jokes. Hey, everyone loves a good fat joke (and by the looks of it, that includes Chris Christie).

10:15 “…the people who watch Bill Maher know he’s an asshole.”  Yep, that’s me.

10:50  First groaner, with the hackneyed newspaper joke (yikes).

15:20  WHAT!?!?!?  Sully Sullenberger  is still a person?  I mean, don’t get me wrong I hailed the guy as much as anyone for being an American Hero, but what has the guy done lately, he’s like the Baha Men of American Heroes (and talking about the Baha Men).

15:58  Barbara is not pleased.  First Trumpian moment of the night.

19:29  Remember that, ‘oh, f*ck you’ smile from before, well this is Obama’s “that was funny” laugh, how do I know?  Because he mouths it directly after.

19:39  We can’t really see his face, but I can assume Gingrich gives us our second Trumpian moment of the night.

25:15  “Some people say journalism is in decline.  They say you’ve become to politicized, to focused on sensationalism, they say you no longer honor your duty to inform America, but instead actively try to divide us, so that your corporate overlords can rake in in profits. I don’t have a joke for this, I’m just letting you know what some people say.”  I couldn’t say it better myself.

Final Grade: B+

What I Missed this Week

This past week Jack White and The Weeknd played New York City shows, and I successfully missed both of them (shake fist to the heavens).  But, thanks to YouTube I can, sort of, experience what I missed.

Jack White At Webster Hall

The Weeknd at the Music Hall of Williamsburg in Brooklyn

Ahh, screw YouTube, that wasn’t fulfilling at all.

Andy Kaufman: Revisted

A few months ago I fell into a deep Andy Kaufman addiction. I digested every Andy Kaufman clip I could find on the internet.  I hate when people throw around the word ‘genius,’ but I truly believe Kaufman was a comedic genius.  Kaufman’s fearlessness and creativity separate him in a world of retreads and reprints.  Of course Kaufman’s been dead for twenty eight years (we think), but his act still holds up remarkably well.  Kaufman successfully laid the ground work to modern alternative comedy, with his commitment to characters, the ‘anti-joke’ and  his unbridled uniqueness.  On the most recent episode of Marc Maron’s wildly popular podcast, WTF, he interviewed Bob Zmuda (Kaufman’s writing partner) which inspired me re-watch some of my favorite Kaufman clips.

The Classic Andy Kaufman Clip

Tony Clifton Clip

The Total F*** the Audience Clip

My Favorite Clip

NBA Playoff Preview (High School Superlatives Edition)

Here is my NBA Playoff preview, High School Superlatives Edition.  Everything you need to know about the NBA’s playoff landscape.

Class Clown

East: Orlando Magic

If you thought Ricky Gervais’ David Brent was cringe-worthy, you haven’t met the Orlando Magic.  The season started with Dwight Howard demanding a trade out of Orlando.  When those demands failed, he approached the front office and played the “him or me” game, fire Stan Van Gundy (the head coach) or lose me to free agency.  That blew up in Howard’s face (see link above).  Now he’s injured and will miss the playoffs, in effect, making the Magic’s chances at a title downright laughable .  They are 5-10 in their last fifteen games (including losses to Cleveland, Detroit and Washington) and with Howard’s absence their leading scorer and rebounder is this guyPrediction: Swept in the First Round.

West: Denver Nuggets


The highest scoring team in the league employs a game plan of high energy and ball movement, making them very fun to watch.  The Nuggets also employ the leagues biggest clown, JaVale McGee.  The Nuggets are extremely well coached, athletic and deep, which can cause some teams (especially old teams) problems.  Unfortunately, the Nuggets lack a big time scorer they can count on at the end of games (sorry Danilo).  Prediction: A Close First Round Loss.

Best Looking

East: New York Knicks

On paper the Knicks look great, big time scorer (Carmelo Anthony), low post presence (Amare Stoudemire), defensive ace (Tyson Chandler) and prolific sixth man (J.R. Smith).  But, much like the best looking girl in school, once you get to know her, she’s a drama queen and leaves a lot to be desired.  This Knicks’ season had so much melodrama (pun intended) it would make “The Young and the Restless” proud.  They started the season inept.  Adding to the early season burden, Melo and Amare incurred injuries.  Then, out of nowhere, some third string point guard out of Harvard named Jeremy Lin seemingly rescued the Knicks’ season.  New York was flying high, and Mike D’Antoni resembled the offensive genius he was in Phoenix.  But, with Carmelo’s return imminent whispers began, “can Carmelo and Lin coexist?”  Carmelo returned and everything turned sour, D’Antoni got fired, Lin got injured and the Knicks looked like they’d miss the playoffs.  Not so fast, Carmelo started to heat up and the Knicks season was saved, again.  Prediction: Out in the First Round           

West: Los Angeles Lakers

The glamor franchise of the NBA.  With three bonafide stars, Andrew Bynum, the second best center in the league, Pau Gasol, the most skilled big man in the game and Kobe Bryant, no explanation needed, the Lakers could play with anyone.  But like beauty, the Lakers are only skin deep.  They’ll have to count of Matt Barnes, Steve Blake and, now with Ron Artest’s  Metta World Peace’s suspension, Devin Ebanks to play significant minutes.  Prediction: Makes it to the Second Round, barely.

Best Actor

East: Boston Celtics

These Boston Celtics have acting experience on and off the court.  The Celtics’ best acting job has come this season though, as Kevin Garnett (35 years old), Paul Pierce (34) and  Ray Allen (36) have acted like pseudo contenders rather than decrepit, falling stars in the twilight of their careers.  While Garnett, Pierce and Allen are still billed as “the big three,” Boston will only go as far as their uber talented and super frustrating point guard, Rajon Rondo will take them.  Rondo an assist machine and  defensive menace can take over games (he has six triple doubles this season, no one else even has two) but lacks any shred of an offensive perimeter game, can’t shoot free throws and owns a fragile psyche.  Prediction: Bounced in the Second Round

West: Los Angeles Clippers

How convenient that our other Beast Actor hails from Hollywood.  With the acquisition of Chris Paul the Clippers became immediate contenders in the Western Conference.  Chris Paul, a pretty good actor in New Orleans, must have enrolled the Clippers’ team in acting classes because they have followed suit.  I know Blake’s been in acting classes,  I mean who gets more camera time then Blake.  While the Clippers boast Chris Paul, the best point guard in the league (and for my money the best pound for pound player in the NBA), and Blake Griffin, an ungodly athletic dunking machine, they are not with out their deficiencies.  They lack a consistent third scorer and their coach, Vinny Del Negro, was almost ousted mid season.  Even with their deficiencies, something in me says do not bet against Chris Paul.  Have you ever seen him play in the playoffs? He elevates his game to a whole new level and I can see Paul having a Dirk-2011-Like playoffs when he just takes over every game and wills his team to victory.  Prediction: Lose in Western Conference Finals.  

Class Flirt

East: Atlanta Hawks

The Hawks have made the playoffs the last five years, have some really talented players (namely Josh Smith and Joe Johnson) but have never managed to advance past the second round and don’t seem all that upset about it either.  The Hawks are like that girl who’s a solid six, she’s cute but not unattainable, she’ll flirt with you, make out with you, depending on how much she drank, maybe even let you get to second base, but she’s not going all the way.  Prediction: Out in the First Round

West: Memphis Grizzles

The Grizzles seem to be the analysts’ sweetheart.  After sneaking into the playoffs last season with an eight seed, they upset, perennial power and number one seed, the San Antonio Spurs.  This year they’ll lock down the four seed with the trio of Zach Randolph, Rudy Gay and Marc Gasol.  With power down low and athleticism on the perimeter the Grizzlies prove to be a trendy pick to win it all.  Of course they’re going to face the Clippers and, my man crush, Chris Paul in the first round so I anticipate the Grizz to disappoint on their promise. Prediction: First Round loss. 

Most School Spirited

East: Indiana Pacers

Basketball is a religion in the state of Indiana, between IU, Hoosiers, and the Pacers.  The Pacers surprised a lot of people this year as they earned the number three seed in the East.  They are as deep as anyone in the NBA, with six players averaging double digits in PPG (points per game).  Frank Vogel, Pacers’ head coach, directs an efficient offensive team with impressive young talent like Paul George and Roy Hibbert along with it’s de facto leader Danny Granger.  Prediction: Pacers Fall in the Second Round

West: Utah Jazz

According to NBA general mangers Utah owns the best home court advantage.  Who knew Mormons were so vitriol?  The Jazz possess two capable bigs, Al Jefferson and Paul Milsap, the slightly above mediocre Devon Harris and wet willy recipient, Gordon Hayward.  They’ll need all the home court advantage they can get.  Prediction: Downed in the First Round

Party Animal

Dallas Mavericks

The Mavs won the championship last year and partied hard.  So hard, it showed.  Early in the season Dirk had to take a few weeks off just to get in shape.  He’s back now and playing at high level but the team is decidedly older and misses Tyson Chandler‘s defensive presence in the post. Prediction: Competitive first round loss.

Most Polite

Philadelphia 79ers

Most polite is a stretch, I know, but what other award can I give them.  They’re a solid team and they seem like a bunch of nice guys (Evan Turner, Jrue Holiday, Elton Brand, Andre Iguodala).  Prediction: Lose to the Heat or Bulls in the First Round.

Valedictorian

East: Chicago Bulls

Thanks to masterful coaching job they finished at the top of their class (best record), even with injuries to pivotal players. Prediction: Advance to the Eastern Conference Finals.

West: San Antonio Spurs

See Chicago Bulls. Prediction: Upset in Second Round

Most Likely To Succeed

East: Miami Heat

You might not like them, but they have the MVP of the League coupled with another top five player in the league, it’s just a matter of time before they win it all.  They went to the Championship last year, and if it wasn’t for Dirk Nowitzti turning into Michael Jordan they probably would have won.  No team in the NBA can match the Heat’s talent and athleticism.  While it’s true the Heat don’t feature a deep or, for that matter, a very talented bench, their top three players (Lebron, Wade and Bosh) cover up many of the bench’s weaknesses.  The only real question that plagues the Heat is will Lebron show up in the fourth quarter of a big game?  Prediction: Win the whole F***ing Thing

West: Oklahoma City Thunder

Between Kevin Durant’s insane ability to score (going on three straight scoring titles) and Russell Westbrook’s freakish athleticism, the Thunder own the best one – two punch in the West.  Add likely Sixth Man of the Year, James Harden and Defensive Player of the Year candidate, Serge Ibaka and you have the best young team in the league.  Throw in some vets with a championship pedigree (Derek Fisher and Kendrick Perkins) and it seems like the Thunder have it all.  They’ll be a terribly tough out in the playoffs.  The key here is that Westbrook remembers he’s the Robin to Durant’s Batman and doesn’t try to highjack the team.  Prediction: Fall to the Heat in the NBA finals  

Pineda for Montero: Revisted

So, Michael Pineda is out for the rest of the season and will probably miss the beginning of next season.  For those of you who don’t follow baseball, Michael Pineda pitches for the New York Yankees, well in theory at least (he’s yet to actually pitch an inning as a Yankee).  This off season the Yankees made a bold move trading their top prospect for Pineda.  When I heard the deal, I instantly hated it.  When I took some time to think about it, I still hated it.  Here’s a text conversation I had with a friend following the trade.

        

The Pineapple and The Hare

This week there was a bunch of hoopla over an eighth grade state reading test, stemming from the passage and question below.

… The Pineapple and the Hare …

In the olden times, animals could speak English, just like you and me. There was a lovely enchanted forest that flourished with a bunch of these magical animals. One day, a hare was relaxing by a tree. All of a sudden, he noticed a pineapple sitting near him.

The hare, being magical and all, told the pineapple, “Um, hi.” The pineapple could speak English too.

“I challenge you to a race! Whoever makes it across the forest and back first wins a ninja! And a lifetime’s supply of toothpaste!” The hare looked at the pineapple strangely, but agreed to the race.

The next day, the competition was coming into play. All the animals in the forest (but not the pineapples, for pineapples are immobile) arranged a finish/start line in between two trees. The coyote placed the pineapple in front of the starting line, and the hare was on his way.

Everyone on the sidelines was bustling about and chatting about the obvious prediction that the hare was going to claim the victory (and the ninja and the toothpaste). Suddenly, the crow had a revolutionary realization.

“AAAAIEEH! Friends! I have an idea to share! The pineapple has not challenged our good companion, the hare, to just a simple race! Surely the pineapple must know that he CANNOT MOVE! He obviously has a trick up his sleeve!” exclaimed the crow.

The moose spoke up.

“Pineapples don’t have sleeves.”

“You fool! You know what I mean! I think that the pineapple knows we’re cheering for the hare, so he is planning to pull a trick on us, so we look foolish when he wins! Let’s sink the pineapple’s intentions, and let’s cheer for the stupid fruit!” the crow passionately proclaimed. The other animals cheered, and started chanting, “FOIL THE PLAN! FOIL THE PLAN! FOIL THE PLAN!”

A few minutes later, the hare arrived. He got into place next to the pineapple, who sat there contently. The monkey blew the tree-bark whistle, and the race began! The hare took off, sprinting through the forest, and the pineapple …
It sat there.

The animals glanced at each other blankly, and then started to realize how dumb they were. The pineapple did not have a trick up its sleeve. It wanted an honest race – but it knew it couldn’t walk (let alone run)!

About a few hours later, the hare came into sight again. It flew right across the finish line, still as fast as it was when it first took off. The hare had won, but the pineapple still sat at his starting point, and had not even budged.

The animals ate the pineapple.

MORAL: Pineapples don’t have sleeves.

Here are two of the questions:

1. Why did the animals eat the pineapple?

a. they were annoyed
b. they were amused
c. they were hungry
d. they wanted to

2. Who was the wisest?

a. the hare
b. moose
c. crow
d. owl

First off, let me say, that may be the greatest ending to a story OF ALL TIME.  I literally laughed out loud.  Read it again.  And laughed out loud again.  Now for my answers to the questions above.  I’ll start with question two, which I think is pretty simple.  Who was the wisest? A, the hare, B, the moose, C, the crow or D, the owl.  We can first eliminate the Owl since he does not appear in the story.  Next, I think we can eliminate the crow for thinking a pineapple could beat the hare in a race.  It comes down to the hare and the moose.  While the moose’s statement does echo the story’s moral it can be the moose, but because he didn’t understand the simple turn of phrase “he has something up his sleeve” I will assume the moose is quite dim, therefore my answer would be A, the hare is the wisest.  Now for the first question, Why did the animal’s eat the pineapple?  This is a perplexing one, but I think we can safely rule out choice ‘B,’ “they were amused,” because that makes absolutely no sense (not like the rest of the passage does, but stay with me).  The animal’s may have been annoyed for looking so dumb, but I doubt they would eat anything just because of their annoyance.  The remaining choices are C, “they were hungry” or D, “they wanted to.”  Using the Socratic method or Kantian ethics or some form of freshman Philosophy, I would say every decision begins with desires and wants, therefore I would choose D, “they wanted to to.”  I have no clue if these are the right answers but I am confident in my effort.

– “What is this a Trix commercial”

– “It’s the bootleg tortoise and the hare”

– “But, such is life”