Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Top 5/Bottom 5 Christmas Songs

Another highly debatable list for your enjoyment. This time, with a holiday theme. I hope you all enjoy. 


5. Casting Crowns - While You Were Sleeping
Holds the title of being known as the only Christmas song to give me goosebumps. 

Preferably the instrumental version, I don't like listening to children singing in little kid voice. It kinda ruins the mood for me. 

Christmas in NYC was always a big event for my sister and I when we were younger, and The Boss brings back old memories of driving around the city doing Christmas-y things. I really think any Christmas song by Bruce is good. He could sing that stupid song about wanting a hippopotamus and make it awesome. 

This, to me, is one of those songs that synonymous with all things Christmas. The busy shopping malls, food, seeing relatives left and right, busy airport holiday travel. Always got me fired up as a kid and still does as an adult. 

Questioned only because I'm not totally sure these are the guys performing the version that I'm thinking about. But whatever the case may be, it's close enough. 

HONORABLE MENTION: This. Yeah, you heard me. 


Spoiled brat. 

OK - obviously I can appreciate the message of the song. But I'm not a fan of Christmas songs being song by women with crazy Jamaican accents and 70's reggae beats. No thanks. 

Or Madonna. Or Britney Spears. Or Taylor Swift. Basically any version of this song = instant Christmas kryptonite for me. You harlets. How dare you attempt to sucker in Santa Claus by singing so seductively? You all should be ashamed of yourselv

It's a novelty act. I get it. And I also don't think it's funny or cute. It makes me want to put my fist through the radio. 


Sunday, October 30, 2011

The agony of defeat

I don't know which of these two guys I hate more: The one on the left or the one on the right.

(From the classic 1996 film: Swingers)

Mike: How did you get over it man? How long did it take you? 

Rob: I don't know, man. Sometimes it still hurts. I don't know, man. It's like you wake up every day and it hurts a little less, and then you wake up one day and it doesn't hurt at all. And it's like, and this might sound weird, but it's like you almost miss that pain. 

Right now, I yearn  for the day when I wake up and it doesn't hurt at all. I know it's coming eventually, but it still seems like it's a hell of a long way off. 

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Random playoff musings

I've kind of slacked off on the sports intensive talk here ever since I bailed out on the bit of trying to write about every single Rangers game during the regular season. (Failed) But it's postseason time in the Vittas household, and we mean business. So let's get to it.

The playoffs have undoubtedly started for our little Texas Rangers here in the big A(rlington), and through two games it saddens us to say things have a different feel than last year.

That's not completely surprising. Last year was such a high pretty much from the point of that giant winning streak over the summer and landing Cliff Lee that you could make the case it carried on through the playoffs. The claw and antler craze was also huge in building fan momentum. This postseason it's just seemed, I don't know, different. Yes the club reached the best record in their history, but there was no idea who their opponent would be or where they would play until the last day of the season. I think that caused a bit of uncertainty amongst playoff ticket buying fans. A quick look on StubHub revealed plenty of tickets available for each of the first two games well up until game time.

I think that we, as Ranger fans, all got a little spoiled in one sense or another by the success of last season. It's not always going to be that easy or chock full of good times. (Editor's note: Not that it was all "easy" the entire run through the playoffs last season. It did go to a final Game 5 versus the Rays. And need I bring up any of the activities during that opening ALCS game against NYY last season? I wanted to strangle someone. But I digress.)

There were many memorable moments from last year that linger with me, but one of the most lasting memories from 2010, aside from the obvious celebration of defeating the evil Yankees and reaching the World Series, took place during the ALDS opener at home. It had come fresh off the heels of taking a 2-0 lead in the series and the park was full of pent up excitement. You could literally cut it with a knife. The video to that Kid Rock song right before the lineup was introduced was awesome as well because the crowd was so spontaneously towel-waving and ear-shatteringing noisy that it brought us both goosebumps.

Then we went out and lost the next two games and hand to go to a final game in the ALDS to move on, but that's besides the point.

Fast forward to this season, and my earlier point was especially driven home after Game 1's 9-0 drubbing at the hand of the Rays. It was so miserable. It was beyond miserable. It was miserably miserable full of miserableness.

But then Game 2 happened and....a sign of life? A turnaround in the series? Too early to tell. But the crowd had more life to it, and so in turn did the Rangers. The Mike Napoli single to tie the game last night was easily the most exciting moment of this series thus far, and the crowd reacted as such

Game 3 occurs Monday. I'm definitely much more a fan of going to Tampa tied 1-1 instead of down 2-0, so we'll see what happens.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Home life

The Vittas' love America.

We've gotten a little lax on this whole blog thing. Sorry about that. When you work 374 hours a week it tends to cause you to become a little lethargic in other areas of your life. Like blogging.

But the other part of that is simply - we have no life.

That's not necessarily a bad thing, mind you. We aren't world travelers. We enjoy the simple things.  A lazy Saturday afternoon, a baseball game, etc. To put it another way, if we owned a hammock I'd be in it as much as possible. It helps the ol' central nervous system but it gives you crap as far as interesting things to blog about go.

So what's been going on? 

Well, September has marked the two month mark of home life on the corner of Hinsdale and Whistler. Overall, I'd say it's been a peaceful existence. Also a learning experience.

In the two months that we've lived here, some of the things I've mastered the art of are:

- Watering the lawn: When the climate around you closely represents the atmosphere of the sun as ours has over the past few months, it becomes increasingly difficult to keep your yard alive. At first, I thought I watered too little. Then I saw our water bill and realized I had been watering too much. Now with the drought reaching epic-crazy levels, we have been sacked with water restrictions as much of the state has, and I'm down to a simple two day a week watering schedule. It's been okay so far, and we had some pretty good rains yesterday evening, so it's surviving for now. But if it dies, it dies. Oh well. Life goes on.

- Taking out the trash twice a week: Is this notable? No. But do you have a blog of your own? Most of you can also answer no. So there. Our nice little corner lot has a little patch of grass (that had been devoid of any kind of mowing for awhile and started to get kind of gnarly - more on the lawn mowing in a moment) that collects our refuse twice a week. When we first moved in, this was crushed cardboard box central. Any child looking to built a fort or castle out of them would have been in heaven. But over the weeks to come, it's been toned down to a bag or two of garbage and our recycling bin. Cool, right? This is noteworthy to me because for the first time since living at home I've been saddled with the responsibility of taking out the trash. I feel so adult.

- Mowing the yard (front and back): Ah yes, here's what we all came to read, no? For starters, let me begin by saying that when we purchased our lawn mower off Craigslist from a fine fellow in Carrolton, I realized it was a push mower. I didn't think that would be a big deal, and for the most part, it hasn't been. Am I whipped as a speckled pup by the end of the affair? Yes, but I'd like to think that a great deal of that is also because it's been hotter than hades each time I've had to go out there and mow this summer. But overall, a push mower has sufficed.

Roots have proved to be a semi-major annoyance and have been a beating for my poor little lawn mower to navigate around, but I've learned to just go to town on the area around them with the weed eater and it's made life a little easier.

As far as the bagging versus not bagging the grass clippings debate, I have chosen not to. Mainly, my reasoning for having decided to do this is because it would take me way too freaking long to mow the lawn if I had to stop and empty the bag every five minutes. And that time frame is probably generous, for you see we have mutant grass that likes to grow an inch every day. Maybe every hour, I don't know.

- Met some neighbors: Only some, not many. And nobody has come by with a basket full of fresh baked cookies or a bottle of wine or anything of that nature yet, but I've exchanged pleasantries with a few of our street mates while out mowing the lawn and getting the mail. We've also learned from our previous owner that we've got someone living by us that cooks up a mean brisket. I've got to make friends with him.

And finally

- Nailing down a good route to and from The Ballpark: Silly yes, but key if you're a Vittas. It's no quick two minute trip any longer but it'll do. 

Monday, July 11, 2011

Before and After Pics

Well, I tried to wait until we had some semblance of things in place and boxes out of the way. So, here you go. Noticeably absent are the two extra bedrooms which are still an assortment of bags and boxes. One will become the guest room, the other will morph into the office/sports room.

Family Room

before: (gross)

after: painted and added crown molding

Dog Room



Master Bedroom (Hey Now)

before: ugly paint

after: paint and crown molding

Master Bathroom

before: attack of the sponge-painted stars


2nd Bath

before: aaaggh, scary

after: the baseball bathroom still has some work to be done.
(please note the baseball bat towel rack on the counter that I just got in the mail today)

Living Room

before: (awesome curtains)



before: 1979 threw up in the kitchen and never left.

after: box light = gone, can lights in / popcorn ceiling = gone, smooth ceiling in / terrible border = gone, new paint

Dining Room

before: blech

after: popcorn ceiling, ugly fan = gone / new ceiling texture + new light fixture + crown molding = in

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Homeownership: Day 26

Well, we're all moved in. Pretty much.

Moving day came and went without too much of a hitch. Mel talked me off the ledge re: moving everything ourselves and we went the approach of a moving company, Two Men And A Truck.

They made everything much smoother, and probably saved multiple vertebrae fractures for us. We even provided them with pizza. They had some, but didn't partake of it too much for fear of vomiting. Nice.

We had some pictures of the new house to blog, but that was before there was furniture and whatnot firmly in place. Now we must take more pictures, and those are the ones we will blog.

Soon, my friends, soon. All good things come to those who wait.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Homeownership: Day 13

The first weekend of yard work is in the book

(Editor's note: I meant to take pictures of this momentous occasion but I did not. I'd like to think that I was just too into the task that was at hand. While that may be somewhat true, I was also lazy and didn't want carry a camera or my phone in my pocket while I was pushing a lawnmower around, or climbing through hedges in order to trim them an appropriate distance back from our house all while dripping - and I do mean DRIPPING - with sweat. Sorry. Sue me.)

Here's the lowlights highlights of the weekend.

Mowing and edging
When the reality set in that I was going to spend my time mowing our front and back lawn using a push mower and not a self-propelling one, like the ones I had used as a kid and for pretty much my entire life, I got a little defeated because I knew that when the chore of mowing the lawn was concluded I would likely be extra-extra tired instead of just regular tired.

Wasn't too bad, as it turns out, as evident by my still being alive to talk about it. For a push mower, and a Craigslist purchase, the thing worked like a dream and made the sometimes arduous process of lawn mowing a fairly easy - and might I say, somewhat enjoyable - task. Thank you Briggs & Stratton for constructing such a fine piece of machinery. High-five.

Edging proved to be a little more difficult because of some nasty angles near the street. That's gonna take some practice so that I don't carve up the lawn. But for now, it'll do.


Trimming the grapevine
When we last left our backyard, it was a little overgrown. One of the two apple trees we have was being attacked and overtaken by a nearby grapevine, creating some kind of apple/grape plant hybrid. A trip to the local hardware store (not Home Depot) produced a rather sharp pair of shears, and a little while later, a ladder, and then I was off to work.

The job of getting all this mess cut down and untangled at first appeared to be a daunting one, but once things got rolling, with a few snips here and there and then a couple of yanks I was pulling down sections of grapevine out of our poor old apple tree like nobody's business.

Granted, I'm not sure if that was the appropriate method for getting that stuff out of there, but it damn sure was effective. Most annoying part of it all was having to bag it up and throw the shrapnel away.

ANNOYANCE LEVEL: 1 (Annoyance? What annoyance?)

I know what you're thinking, and stop it. There's children reading this. 

This should have been a relatively simple thing to do. There wasn't even a lot to necessarily weedwack, but I wanted to get the initial wacking (I said, stop it) out of the way. 

Sounds simple enough, right? Well, it was. Except for the fact that turned one trip to the hardware store to purchase the appropriate spool into two because I had no idea what kind to purchase. Struggling.

ANNOYANCE LEVEL: 4 (For unnecessary trips to the hardware store)

Trimming the bushes
I mean it now, stop with the giggling.

Here's where things became the diciest for me in this whole process. We had acquired an electric hedge trimmer from Craigslist at the same time we purchased the weedwacker, lawnmower, et al. All that remained needing to be purchased was an extension cord of the outdoor variety, which was picked up (this time, from Walmart, on a Friday night no less.....what possessed me to do that I have no idea). A nice long 100 foot long one (hey, I wanted to to err on the side of caution).

So as I climbed through the bushes to trim them back from the kitchen windows, getting poked at and pricked (.......) through my shorts (!!!!!!!!) and sweat-soaked t-shirt, I managed to somehow get the cord caught into the blades of my electric hedge trimmer and cut clear through the dang thing.

Kaput. Dead.


Welp, that $18 went far.

On the other side of the house, lay the treacherous blackberry bush, complete with some of the thorniest thorns in the history of thorny plants. Let's just say I'm lucky there was minimal blood loss.

ANNOYANCE LEVEL: 8 (For obscenely high levels of plant hating)

Painting wraps up this week. Moving day is scheduled day for Saturday. 

Almost home. 

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Homeownership: Day 8

The painting process is about to commence at the new domicile. Our loyal group of painters are lovingly taping around every windowsill, electrical outlet, and anything else you can think of that we would completely screw up if we decided to do this ourselves.

Already one big transformation has taken place from the previous owners to the Vittas's: The large-sized circa 1970's box light hanging down from the cooking area of the kitchen has been removed and replaced with regular can lights. A major improvement.

I've tentatively planned on Saturday being the first ever yard work day under new ownership, and am somewhat sadistically looking forward to it. 

Keep in mind, while the process of painting, moving, and whatnot transpires, Mel has been taking pictures and will at some point be blogging about all of it. And we all will be happy with that. 

In the meantime, here's a somewhat relevant song to everything we're talking about. 


Thursday, June 2, 2011

Homeownership: Day 2

The lights came on at 500 Hinsdale today for the very first time under ownership of a Vittas. How did we celebrate this occaison?

I went over after work and sprayed some hornet nests with bug spray. Get used to a lot of this, boy.

One startling discovery that was made was that to go along with the vines of grapes growing in the backyard, the apple tree, the plum tree, and the herb garden, we also have blackberries growing on the side of the house. So knowing that, the fruit salad may be a frequent specialty at the new residence.

Or not. Who knows.

To be perfectly honest, it's still a little new to the both of us, this "home owner" moniker. But I'm sure that once the new coats of paints have have been applied, each one with a stroke of tender, loving care (that sounded gay) things will begin to feel more and more like home.

More to come soon.

Friday, May 27, 2011

John Rhadigan thoughts

Tom Grieve has the same look on his face that many of us had during the Rhadigan era.

John Rhadigan was relieved of his Rangers television broadcast duties this week after almost two tortuous months of play-by-play calling.

Needless to say, it made a lot of people feel a little like this.

Us included.

First, let's get it all out of the way: As a person, I like John Rhadigan. I think he has a pleasant and friendly demeanor. Seems like a very likable person - the kind who would get along good with children. The Rangers offered him the chance to do something he had been dreaming about and jumped at the chance to do it. For that, I cannot say I blame the guy at all.

But while it seemed a fun occasion at the time, that Rangers Rally last November should have been a red flag. Take a listen again and hear for yourself. Very nerdy. I know, that crowd is eating it up. But back then that was a crowd fresh off witnessing the first World Series appearance in club history, of course there was going to be some level of excitement. Hell, Rhads could have come out and read from the Farmers Almanac and I think you'd still have fans doing the Claw and Antler for the camera.

Fast forward to this season, and where do you begin? I wish I could put together a playlist on iPod of his worst in-game performances during his time at the television helm to listen to during bad days at the office or something. A few of these little ditties might be on it.

(Before I get into all that, let me present to you what I estimate to be the BEST call John Rhadigan had during his tenure here. David Murphy's two-run double on Opening Day against the Red Sox.  It was a pretty big hit in the game - the go-ahead runs I believe. You had all the elements: Big game, big moment of the game, crowd was really into it. The only thing that would have ruined that call would have been if Rhads had just stopped talking and started making gurgling noises. The only thing you could maybe have a legit complaint about is how he goes from monotone to excited like he did. I happen to think that's a good quality, but that's just me.)

This one may probably be the worst moment for Rhads, occurring just last weekend in Philadelphia.  The ball CLEARLY did not go over the wall, yet Rhads gets a bad case of homerun call envy and starts stumbles all over himself. Just cringe-worthy.

Other notably bad moments of sports broadcasting by John Rhadigan:

A double-whammy on this on this one, first with a "Get that kid a contract!" comment about the young lad who catches the homerun ball on the hill, followed by "it's a Lone Star Longball".  I don't even know where to begin to analyze how retarded that sounds. It's not even only the fact that he thought that was a cute enough phrase to use on-air, it's that he tried to make it sound so subtle and matter-of-factly that he chose to work it in while the flag waving girls were running around. I feel weird even using the capitalization that I did. Put it all together, and you get this.

- "Saddle up baseball, you're going for a ride!" during what I believe was a Josh Hamilton homerun in a Spring Training game on March 14th. Again, as annoying as John Sterling can be, I don't think I could even fathom him uttering such a cornball phrase. Or maybe I could. I don't know anymore.

- Incorrectly identifying Neftali Feliz as "Pedro". I don't remember this actually happening. May have been in a comatose state.

- "It's time to play ball, ya'll!" uttered I believe as the TV broadcast is going to break right before first pitch. All I could think of whenever I heard that was: I mean, what is this? What the hell is this?

I could track down so many more moments that made me want to lose my lunch during the Rhads era, but frankly I don't care to. It's sad when you think about that as crazed fans as Mel and I both are, we were muting the television and watching these games he was broadcasting with no sound.

But alas, just like Joanie Loves Chachi, Saved By The Bell: The New Class, and The Chevy Chase Show - this television experiment has thankfully, and painfully, come to an end.

Sunday, May 15, 2011


(Editor's note: Not actual representation of our house.)

Not a lot going on. Still waiting to finalize some stuff on the new house. Cross some t's, dot some i's, this and that. Mel and I are getting kind of antsy at this point and are ready to begin our future at the new abode as soon as possible. Good things come to those who wait I suppose.

One thing that we have begun is the packing process, starting with the bookshelves. One of the things I hope to do is gradually increase our library collection once we move into the new house.

This book will probably not be purchased.

One of the things I have yet to investigate is performing a time study on the amount of time it takes me to go from the Ballpark to our future driveway. I have estimated that with traffic lights, it will likely roughly another 2-3 minutes of travel time. Plenty of time to sit behind the wheel and get frustrated about the offense sucking and the bullpen blowing another game.

More to come in the coming days and weeks, I'm sure.

Enjoy your Sunday.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Playing Catch-Up, April 3rd-9th

Since my husband has started the theme of 3 notable tidbits of each game we are at (or watch) - and has obviously fallen very far behind, I have decided to pick up the slack. Albeit - all in one week-encompassing blog.

Sunday, April 3rd:

1. This was a family affair. The entire Dunlap/Vittas/Dunn clan was in attendance. (Maybe I shouldn't reference us as a clan) Pa-Paw also made an appearance at a game for the first time in s-e-v-e-r-a-l years. Oh Pa-Paw. (The usher is a failed photographer.)

2. Tyler is again a member of the Jr. Rangers, thanks to Aunt Wittle and Uncle John. And was also introduced to the greatness of batting practice.

3. Matt Harrison. Alright, okay. Broom. Sports.

Monday, April 4th:

1. We got our rings.

2. Robert met the gnome.

3. A 6-4 lead, going to the top of the 9th, and idiots trying to start the wave. These stupid bandwagon fans led me to order this t-shirt:

Tuesday, April 5th:

1. I had little faith in Alexi Ogando to make it through 6 innings of this game. Much less 6 scoreless innings.

2. After this game, Mark Lowe's ERA sucks. 27.00 to be exact. I would be quite happy not seeing him pitch again. You were a throw-in last July-and did nothing to prove otherwise.

3. I did not watch the diving catch in the top of the 7th. I do not trust noodle-arm Borbon. Luckily, for me and the 30,000+ other fans there, he proved me wrong. (this time at least)

Wednesday, April 6th:

1. While I had to leave during the 7th inning stretch and head to work, I sat in the parking garage at NE Mall and listened happily to the end of the game, waving my broom in solitude.

2. I need to better apply my sunscreen.

3. Sitting peacefully in Fred's section, basking in the sun (which later proved a horrible horrible move), I heard a girl say "I get Beltre and Napoli confused since they're both new." Yes, she might not be a total BW for knowing they are both new to the team.... but I would venture to guess that is where their similarities end.

Thursday, April 7th = Off Day
Friday, April 8th = rain out

Saturday, April 9th:

We only saw some of the first game, but....... my less than doting opinion of Adrian Beltre continues. All or nothing. 2 GIDPs in game 1. And even after his 3 run HR in game 2 last night, the $16 million offense is hitting .182. Awesome.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

The three most important things about last night

Welcome to Texas. 

1. Adrian Beltre - My wife is a funny person when it comes to judgements on players. Early on last night, Beltre had a hotshot get by him at third and rattle around in the corner for a double. He didn't even make an effort to go after it. Now, whether the ball wouldn't have been attainable even if he had tried to dive for it is a moot point now obviously, but it drew the ire of her (and me too a little) for the lack of effort on the play.

A little bit later, when came to bat with the sacks loaded and two outs, I turned to her and said "This is either going to make you love him or hate him for the rest of the season."

End result? Adulation.

2. Mason Tobin - He was shaky. There was a reason why he came into the game when it was 12-3.

3. That new videoboard - I have never seen anything so beautiful in my life.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

3 things I think that I think about Opening Day

I don't know you very well yet, Yorvit Torrealba, but I like this. 

OK, so I know neither one of us has blogged anything in almost a month. Sorry. We've been kinda busy.

I say that knowing that our lives are about to get MUCH busier knowing that another MLB season is upon us and I still work 937 hours a week. I actually have rare Saturday off for a change and thought I would take the opportunity to sit around in my pajamas to actually blog something. So here you go.

Earlier this year I proposed the idea that we would blog something about every game we either watch on television or attend in person. Well, one down, 161 to go (maybe).

So the three things that stood out to me about this, the opening game of the 51st year of the Washington Sentators/Texas Rangers franchise:

1. Opening Day - What a fantastic day. Nobody is bad, nobody is good. Every team is the same at the start of a new season, and that feeling you get once you see an old friend for the first time in forever is something close to what you feel when you walk from the concourse to the seating section and see that big, green expanse of dirt and grass in front of you. Greatness.

2. Julio Borbon - That being said, I'm not sure what's gotten in to this guy. Is he talented? Yes. Undoubtedly yes. I think he demonstrated that when he stole home in Boston last season. But the guy has no clue how to unlock all that potential he has stored inside of him. After a terrible spring on the basepaths, on the field, and generally all over, starting the season by bumping into your right fielder and causing an easy out to turn into a two-base error is not the way you want to get your season started off.

3. Mike Napoli - A cult hero already amongst Ranger fans already? Maybe. But with the way he swung the bat and wielded the glove yesterday afternoon I'd like to see the guy in the lineup as much as possible this season.

Monday, March 7, 2011

The Top 10 Baseball Related Songs of All-Time

I'm not going to sugarcoat any of this: The following list may alienate a few of you from me. But with baseball right around the corner, I figured it's time for another list.

I had originally wanted to go with "The Top 10 Baseball Songs of All-Time" as a title to this blog post, but  flat-out labeling each one of these as baseball songs would be a bit drastic. So we'll stick with a friendlier, all-encompassing title as you see above.

Without further adieu, I present to you the reader, my list of the Top 10 Baseball Songs Of All-Time Baseball Related Songs of All-Time.

10. Reckless Kelly - April To October
I can't find a link to provide you with the baseball-licious harmonies of this tune, but a song about relationships with the opposite sex that's filled with nothing but baseball analogies belongs on a list of mine.

9. Dropkick Murphys - Tessie
I don't like the Red Sox, and Red Sox fans tend to grate on me worse than the baby that won't shut up on the plane ride home from out of town. But in my opinion, any song so cool that it makes me almost wish I was a fan of the team that's being sung about is A-OK in my book.

8. Alabama - The Cheap Seats
Leans a little more to the minor league baseball variety, but hey, that's okay. It's also one of those fun, I-don't-care-that-we-suck-and-have-lost-17-games-in-a-row songs.

7. The Treniers - Say Hey! (The Willie Mays Song)
Quick Willie Mays story: We saw him at Don & Charlie's, a very well-known restaurant and pretty big hotspot this time of year in Scottsdale, AZ over the weekend, and even though the man was charing $200 a pop (for the "Say Hey" Foundation), the man had an aura around him. Nolan Ryan, to me, has an aura around him as well - but for different reasons.

That's not to say I wouldn't want to sit down and have a meal with Nolan Ryan, but to be in the same room as Willie Mays, the Say Hey kid, was really wild.

So there you go. Say Hey! checks in at number seven on the countdown. I felt like Casey Kasem just now.

6. Bruce Springsteen - Glory Days
I wish there was a blood pressure monitor nearby every time I was at The Ballpark and heard that guitar to kick the song off, followed by the "WHOOOO!" and then the organ. It would shoot through the roof with sports filled excitement.

5. Steve Goodman - Go, Cubs, Go!
Once again: I'm not a Cubs a fan, but any song cool enough to make me wish I was a fan of that team definitely belongs on a list.

4. Terry Cashman - Talkin' Baseball (Willie, Mickie, and The Duke)
One of those songs that will never fade away. Of course, everybody knows The Simpsons version (Homer, Ozzie, and The Straw), but in addition to that, a quick search of YouTube reveals that practically every single MLB team has some sort of version of this song created by some fan.

3. Randy Newman - The theme from "The Natural"
(Sorry about the creepy guy at the beginning of the clip. I didn't feel like finding a different version.)
If you're playing the game - any version of it, be it video game, Adult-League softball, backyard with your kids - and someone hits a ball over something, you know you're going to be thinking about this song. You may just think about it in your head or you may sing it out loud, but you know it'll be there.  \

2. Take Me Out To The Ballgame 
Any version. But if I have to pick one, I'd go with the Carly Simon version of it. Sadly, I don't have a link to it outside of this link where you can listen to either some or all of it before you buy the song on Amazon.

This version of this song has sentimental meanings to me because it takes me back to being a kid, going to games at the old stadium and remembering all those special times I had when baseball was just coming into my sports consciousness. I know some might be insulted that this song isn't at number one, but come on, that'd be too obvious.

(Sidenote: I just now read up some on Carly Simon through a Q&A on her website and discovered that, in an answer to a question in 2002 she is NOT a fan of baseball anymore because, in her words, "there is so much trading of players". )

(Really, Carly??? Of all the things that are wrong with the game in its current state - performance enhancing drugs, ridiculous contracts - you chose TRADES as the reason you've lost interest in baseball? Okay.)

1. John Fogerty - Centerfield
My all-time favorite. You bet your you-know-what this song will be fired up on Opening Day.

There you have it. Go sports.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Having the flu is not fun

It all started on Friday morning, pretty much from the time I woke up. 

I felt like an abhorrently large amount of crap. At first, I thought it was just allergies. (Later research on the allergy scene further enhanced that belief when it was revealed there were "Very High" amounts of elm and juniper in the air. Obviously not what the real case was now, but I'm sure it still didn't help. Curse you, elm and juniper.)

I tried to fight through it by surviving off the generic, weirdly titled medicines they keep in the emergency cabinets at my work place. These pills have odd titles like "Certisinus", or "Absofreakinglutelycoughmedicine"and junk. 

None of that helped. 

Right about noon Saturday was when things really begun to take a turn for the worse. I could tell I was running a slight fever, but as the day progressed it really begun to turn on the afterburners. By 5:00 PM, I was done. Tank emptied. Nothing left. 

Got home and decided to take my temperature. 


Uh, problem. 

After alerting Mel of the situation, I made an appointment at the local CareNow and got myself looked at. My temperature had actually gone UP since I had first taken it when I got home - 102.6. The doctor informed me that adult human beings should be "severely concerned about their health" when their temperature gets that high. 

Big problem. 

The first red flag came when my ear was examined. Right ear checked out fine, no problem. Left ear, different story. Ear infection. DING! 

Then came the flu test. After a quick ramming of a giant cotton swab up my nasal cavatiy, the verdict was in: The dreaded and feared influenza. 

(Quick sidenote: If CareNow's mission statement is to make you feel as worse as you possibly can BEFORE they begin treatment to make you feel better, they succeeded. Not only was I there around two hours, at one point I began to wonder if I was being detained for questioning in a room where the air temperature was 60, and I was already freezing my hindquarters off since I had a ridiculously high fever. On top of all that, on the television in my examination room: The Hannah Montana Movie. Why?)

CareNow is also apparently very selective in giving their patients the option of feeling better sooner rather than later. I was posed this exact question and immediately took the "sooner" option, which consisted of two shots, one in each hip. Then after a approximately 10 minute waiting period in which my nurse waited to see if I would have any kind of reaction to the drugs (which may or may not have included turning into an ice cube, which didn't happen thank you very much) I was off to the nearest 24 hour pharmacy to load up on an arsenal of flu medicine. 

Flash forward to today and the road to recovery. I feel much better than I did yesterday, and hopefully tomorrow will be another big improvement. I have given Mel permission to evacuate the premises for the time being. I miss when she's not here, but would honestly feel a whole heck of a lot worse if she caught this as a result of staying here. 

I've already devoured one bowl of chicken noodle soup and I'm on my third bottle of Gatorade, who incidentally is the global partner of the National Basketball Association. So be sure to watch all the action of NBA All-Star Saturday Night, live from Los Angeles tonight on TNT. 

(See that little bit of cross promotion that I did there??)

Thanks for the concern and well-wishes from everybody. 

Suck it, flu.