(A Random Post)

Here are some miscellaneous points of interest, in today’s inappropriately named feature we (I) like to call Choking Yak’s Provoking Facts.

– I assumed I had just missed it, but there was a reason why the Toronto Blue Jays’ No. 1 fan was not shown on the big screen all game during the home opener against the Red Sox. Amersia Thompson passed away last winter, at the age of 38, from “pulmonary thromboembolism caused by deep vein thrombosis.” She was at literally every single Blue Jays game I have ever been to, and they always put her up on the jumbotron; the last Friday was the first opener in 18 years without her. Over the last ten plus years, she became as much as a fixture of the team as their lack of a Major League level shortstop or dependable closer, or the inevitable third place finish. As odd as it seems, the first year we seemingly have all those issues solved is the first one without her. Really just a heartbreaking story, and another rare occasion in which I am reminded that I have actual human emotions. Finding and reading that article this morning really bummed me out.

Now I’m kinda worried that I didn’t see that crazy black guy with the drumset outside of Gate 6 after the game either.

(Hard to acknowledge John McDonald’s .270something OBP as anything near Major League level, but I got no problem if The Prime Minister of Defense starts as Doc’s personal shortstop. Did you see that play yesterday in the 8th when he absolutely ROBBED Dustin Pedroia of a hit up the middle? No one else in baseball is making that play. And yes, I play softball, so I can make that statement without fear of contradiction.)

Yankee Stadium traffic causes man to shoot himself in the head. That’s distorting the actual story a bit, but it’s still technically all correct. Though I like their headline better. You know, if Aaron Hill caught that Matsui grounder in the 7th on Opening Day to turn two after Posada was intentionally walked, A-Rod wouldn’t have scored, and the game would still have been tied, and who knows what would have happened afterwards or when the game would have ended? So you could almost say that Aaron Hill took that gun, pointed it at that man’s head, and pulled that trigger himself. So in a very real, literal way, you could say that Aaron Hill murdered a man in cold blood by not getting down quicker on that ball. Don’t you ever mess up on another grounder when Doc’s on the mound, you heartless butcher of men.

– One more baseball related link…some nerdy math professor has parsed a number of managerial related statistics into Chernoff faces. This is the type of story that’s kinda neat so it’ll make the rounds, but ultimately meaningless since these are irrelevant stats anyway, and not really subtle enough for Chernoff faces to be of any real use here outside of amusement. Though I am amused. It’s fairly simple – for example, the Jays were 27th of 30 teams in total stolen bases and 24th of 30 in sacrifice hits last season, which were arbitrarily graphed as the height of eyes, curve of smile, and size of nose…so John Gibbon’s Chernoff face is a neat contrast in Willie Randolph’s (the Mets were 1st in stolen bases and 3rd in sacrifice hits). Though if we had Jose Reyes (an insane 78 steals in 2007) on our team and we played in the National League, we would probably have similar numbers too.

I also laughed at how much Ron Washington’s face looked like a Gamorrean, and then I felt ashamed for even knowing what a Gamorrean was or how they looked like.

– Here’s some quality misogynistic fun for everyone – The Problem With Women In The Workplace. Fairly long read, but good if you’re ever really bored. And hate women. So for me…like, all the time.

– This is probably one of the cooler things I’ve seen lately – although you will only realize the full potential of its coolness if you’re familiar with Valve’s Portal (here is the relevant Penny Arcade strip for your reference, Jess). A street artist has put up one portal on Bloor, near Euclid…and the other over two kilometres away, on Yonge near Bloor. Check out the portals – you can actually see the stores on Yonge in the portal near Euclid, most notably the sign for Burgundy’s Bat & Eatery in the second picture of the first link and the last picture of the second link. The guy responsible also once put up Mario blocks filled with dry leaves around the city, so cool beans to that.

– More Mario…found this off the homesite of the Metal Gear Awesome video that AL posted up recently…Asshole Mario. This is actually the second installment of the series, known in Japanese as Kaizo Mario. Here’s the gist – some ass out there hacked the game and created near-impossible levels for Super Mario World, and then another ass downloaded them, played them, recorded the entire thing, and posted it on YouTube. And then the third ass (that would be myself) spends 15 minutes watching the second ass play each stage that the first ass made. This level’s my favourite because of the insane stretch of flying fish near the end, but there’s a whole bunch of them in the “Related Videos” section if you’re so inclined. It picks up a little bit and the cuts are shorter and less annoying as it goes, but it’s still absolutely retarded…and I still cannot stop watching. Reminds me of Shinobi – either the early Genesis versions of the game or even the PS2 one. Just excessively, assholeishly difficult…and just playing the levels borders on masochism, nevermind actually beating them. I wouldn’t have minded if they had included the audio commentary as he played – it’d just be like a track of exasperated chuckles amid a chorus of “WHAT THE FUCK!” repeated over and over again.

– Ever since I watched The Departed (actually, not even – ever since I watched the trailer for the movie) I’ve always had this yearning to smash a glass into the side of someone’s head. I imagine this whenever I leave my seat at work with my Cereality mug (which I don’t remember where I got it from) to get water or coffee, and I’m walking those thirty steps with an empty mug in my hand. These days, I’m just praying for someone to cross my path and ask me if I’m pregnant.

– Every single Monday, on the way to and from basketball, I always pass Mingay Avenue off 16th. And every single time, I imagine if I actually lived on that street, and I imagine giving imaginary visitors directions to get to my imaginary house…“Just remember it’s like gay…but like the minimum amount of gay. So like ‘Mingay.'” Every single time. It’s not even really that funny at all, but I will continue to make this joke endlessly to myself whenever I drive past Minway Avenue without realizing that I’ve already done it a dozen times before in the past and will continue to do so a dozen more times in the future. Also, I will no doubt forget about this immediately after pressing the “Publish Post” button and I will make the joke to myself again tonight when I pass it. I am doomed to repeat it forever.

There is no way this winter is EVER going to end as long as that groundhog keeps seeing his shadow. I don’t see any way out of it. He’s got to be stopped. And I have to stop him.

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Destined to fight the world's evil, The WAMBAG endures massive battles involving impossible stunts, races on horse-pulled carriages, and the desecration of enchanting medieval castles (all done with dizzying computer graphics). Not only does the eye candy keep on coming, the tongue-in-cheek writing and deep Transylvanian accents perfect the film with a dose of dark humor.

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