Sunday, September 23, 2007

Jose, We Hardly Knew Ye

WHAT I'M LISTENING TO: A mix-CD I made last year with a variety of music. Some music from films, some Tom Waits, and a dash of "No Woman No Cry".

WHAT I'M READING: Just started "Hubris", yet another book pointing out what an idiot Dubya is. Why do I keep reading them? Honestly, don't know. I go to the library with the best intentions, but usually cannot pick some books out and end up going over to the modern history section.

WHAT I'M WATCHING: If it's the weekend, it must be time on Planet Football. Watched some MLS action last night, and just finished viewing Manchester United's huge two-nil win over Chelsea with my boy Jude. Outside of the footie, Queen of the Dung Heap and I are working through the last of the Jeff films. Down to the final four for those who care (which would be me and Kimbers when she's bored enough). Also finished up the second season of X-Files a bit ago, so will be whipping out season three soon. And finally, the new TV season starts this week. So it's back to our joint viewing of Heroes, Earl, The Office, and my reality shows (The Ultimate Fighter 6 and The Contender).

I FIND IT FUNNY how the local yokels and the media react to Notre Dame. See, the Dung Heap is roughly a spit in a good wind away from the campus. So we get a lot of Notre Dame stuff here. What I love is the vicious cycle. A Notre Dame team will be sucking it up. Fans will cry for the coaches head.

sidenote-My favorite example of this is back when the Bob guy was here after Lou Holtz. Due to working like twenty-two days in a row, my employer gave me two free tickets to a Notre Dame game. Didn't really want to go, but had never been and thought it would be a way to waste an afternoon with the wife before heading to the first Harry Potter film at the local picture show. So we go. The fans all around us (those who actually care about pointy-ball) are just attacking the coach from the opening kick. One guy is shouting angrily after every play that Notre Dame isn't passing the ball. "Why do you always run? Pass the ball once!" So, at some point in the second quarter Notre Dame passes, and it is intercepted. The idiot jumps up immediately and yells out "Why'd you pass the ball, Coach?" in anger.

Anywho, the team sucks and the coach is fired. The fans rejoice. Some new guy is hired, and all is golden. Jeff Jeffers, the local "sports newscaster" (I use quotations because from what I can tell he only knows about Notre Dame football and no other sport) goes on and on during the news cast giving the coach fellatio (okay, he only literally gave one coach fellatio one time on air, but you can tell at the end of the interview that Jeffers is about to spread those lips wide to open the cock holster soon as the cameras are off). It's just days and weeks of how great the new coach is and how much the last guy sucked. Invariably, the words "The tradition is back" or "the glory years are returning" or "Ugh mghdition ishgh baghagah" (spoken with mouth full of coach schlong) are spoken on air. You see the signs popping up in yards. Some form of t-shirt is quickly put out by the university at the bargain basement price of $85 (seriously, Notre Dame sent me a catalog once and everything is over-priced; it cost like ninety bucks for ND boxers).

New coach will come in, riding the wave of glory and love (and wiping Jeffers' spit off his pubes). That first season the team will usually do good. No national title, no bowl victories, but like one or two defeats. Good. The local fans are excited. Jeffers is jerking Little Jeff during the eleven o'clock news. Hysteria is in the air. Next year is the year. This new guy will get his recruits in, the stank of the old coach will finally be completely gone. Everything will be sweet corn. Of course that national title will come to the Bend. (actually, according to the university, the campus is located in Notre Dame, Indiana; find that place on a fucking map you jackholes!). Jeffers, after swallowing a load of liquid love, will declare them the best pointy ball team on the planet, ranking them above the Super Bore winners. ("If the Irish played NFL Champions the Colts, it would be a 45-zero rout called off at halftime according to the mercy rule established in slow-pitch softball leagues and playgrounds around the nation.").

Of course, that second year the team comes back to reality. They lose as often as they win, if not more. The new recruits stink. The national title dream is gone by week two. Jeffers won't return the coach's phone calls.

And, naturally, the fans turn on the coach. He goes from a write-in vote for the Nobel Prize to unable to get a free meal at the homeless shelter. His head is called for. Calls are made for a new coach.

That's where we are right now. I guess Notre Dame has lost every game. People want change. If they don't hire a new coach, the athletic director will be assassinated Grassy Knoll style by the time the Thanksgiving turkey is on the fourth day of leftover sandwiches.

I have no doubt that this will continue. They'll suck. Fans will want a new coach. He'll probably get fired next year. And Jeffers will be chapping up those sweet, sweet lips waiting for the announcement of the new coach.

I find it all very funny, myself.

p.s.-I hate Jeff Jeffers. With every fibre of my being. In case you were wondering.

JOSE JOSE JOSE JOSE IS GONE IS GONE (to the tune of "ole ole ole ole")
So Mourinho has left Chelski. Not too suprising. Seems he and the trillionaire Russian owner Abramovich could no longer get along. Abramovich bought Chelski four years ago with the dream of football glory at any cost (really, any cost, the dude spent hundreds of millions on players). Chelski won nothing that first year, so the gaffer was fired and Jose Mourinho was brought in. Mourinho had just led FC Porto to a league/Champions League double, and was being considered as the best football manager on the globe. In three years, Chelski won two Premiership titles, one FA Cup, two Carling Cups, and one Charity Shield. Pretty damn good. They lost like six matches in the league during this time, and never lost at home. But they didn't win the Champions League. So Mourinho was under pressure, and couldn't take it anymore.

He's gone now, and I'll miss him. Oh, he's two excellent a football mind to be unemployed for long. But he had a swagger that I enjoyed. Chelski have appointed some nobody that use to coach Israel to take his place. I see a minor disaster here, and this new guy Grant won't be on the sideline come next August.

Worst of all, it would have been sweet if Man United beat Chelski in Mourinho's last game in charge. Instead, they whupped the Trillionaire's Boy Club today in Grant's first game of a short reign.

Direct Kick-57

So that's 57 games for $79, or $1.39 per game, with a whole month left!

Be Seeing You.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

The Rumors of Dung's Death Have Been Greatly Exaggerated (to the dismay of many)

WHAT I'M LISTENING TO: Some Depeche Mode, some Sinead O'Connor and some Ben Lee.

WHAT I'M WATCHING: Finished up the weekend's MLS action, and now back into X-Files Season Two (I shall finish it, by God!).

WHAT I'M READING: Nothing at the moment. Gave up on "Hannibal Rising" even though I made it through the first three books by Thomas Harris. The end of "Hannibal" was such a huge disappointment, and the first 100 pages of this one are equally bad. Harris jumped the shark, getting too wrapped up into loving his own creation to make an interesting, realistic story. Off to the library today to begin something new.

Here I am, back after a month's absence. Just enjoying the tail-end of summer here in Northern Indiana. Hanging out with the family, playing with Number One Son while the weather is still nice, and working my way through the Jeff Award film list. See, it's a list of 100 films released in 2006. I watch them all, then I whittle it down to nominees for my Jeff Awards (but that's a whole other blog).

Can't believe it's almost mid-September already. The summer goes on officially for another two weeks, Labor Day is generally considered the end of it. Kids are back in school, vacations are done, and pools are being put up as we speak. Here at the old Dung Heap, we celebrated Jude's third birthday plus the big three holidays, and our sixth anniversary.

I'm a summer guy. As I've posted before, I love the warm weather and being able to go outside. I love taking Jude to the local park at night. I love wearing shorts and a t-shirt (or in my case, many DC United and Manchester United jerseys). I love grilling. I love driving with the windows down. I love the sun being up before me, and setting after nine at night.

But that's all going to change soon, as it does every year. It's already dark when I get up, and the sun is setting as we come home from the park at eight o'clock in the evening.

Today, for the first time in a long time, the air conditioner is off AND the windows are closed. It's chilly out.

Before too long, I'll have to get the rake out and pick up the leaves. Less this year, because last week I butchered the family tree.

Halloween is only about forty days away (hell, it's right now according to cinemas across America), and the candy is on display in the stores. Right after that is Thanksgiving, then Christmas. Pretty soon, 2007 will be but a distant memory.

I'm having fun, but time is flying ridiculously quickly lately.

BIG NEWS ALERT! Mark it down on your calendars! Friday the twenty-sixth of October around 7:45 in the morning, Son Number Two shall be born (or ripped from the womb, whichever you prefer). It's crunch time, but we're ready. Well, Mrs. Dung is ready, and she's the only one that really counts here, as it's her body the little bugger has invaded.

I'm looking forward to being a daddy to another bouncing baby boy, but still curious how I'll handle being a father of two.

1. DC United is on the rise, winning seven of the last eight, and collecting twenty-two out of twenty-four points to take a nice lead in the Eastern Conference, and move closer to our second straight Supporter's Shield. The way the team is playing, I'm beginning to believe that we can win title number five come November. MLS Cup 2007 is at RFK Stadium, and if United are in the game, you can bet on a sellout, with a great crowd supporting. I like what I see.

2. Manchester United struggled out of the gate. Two draws and a loss in the Manchester derby to start the season. But things are back on track. Consecutive wins over Tottenham and Sunderland put us at eight points. It's going to be tough making up the early season lost ground, but the squad has the talent. Plus, we've been without Rooney since game one, and Ronaldo since game two.

3. Impressive win Saturday at home for Los Angeles Galaxy, especially with Landon Donovan and David Beckham not being there. But still, I can't see them making the playoffs. Too little too late there. Shame too, as they have the talent to go far, and a great coach. But injuries and poor form have hurt them. If they get everybody back next year and can avoid the injury bug, L.A. could be very dangerous in 2008.

4. DC are in form, as are Chivas USA. In MLS, in-form for the playoffs often means a championship.

5. Finally, here is the beloved...

Fox Soccer Channel-16
Direct Kick package-51
(as of 9/9/07)

So that's 51 games for $79, or $1.55 per game. And there's still another month to go. What a bargain!

Good to be back.

Be Seeing You.