Friday, November 16, 2007

MLS Cup 2007

WHAT I'M LISTENING TO: A lot of the soundtrack to The Fountain, as it's the first CD I bought in 2007.

WHAT I'M READING: Nothing right now. Time to hit the library.

WHAT I'M WATCHING: Well, this Sunday it's MLS Cup 2007 (more down below). Also hitting X-Files Season 3 really hard with Sullivan.

Late nights, long days, and lots of chores to do. It's my life these last few weeks since the birth of Sullivan, and I'm loving it.

I usually stay up to about 1 in the morning, letting my wife get her much needed rest every night. So the little baby and I are watching some DVD's, such as X-Files.

But this coming Sunday is the big one for me in American sports. My Super Bowl (only exciting), my World Series (only exciting), my NBA Finals ( get the point). Yes, it's the twelfth annual Major League Soccer championship game, the MLS Cup.

A sad one for me, as my United fell out earlier, and the game is at their home stadium. It would have been awesome if they made it, as it would have guaranteed a sellout and a rocking crowd.

But, alas, it didn't happen. Instead, much as I predicted last time, it's a rematch of last year's game. Houston Dynamo (defending champions) versus New England Revolution (three time losers making their third straight final appearance). Last year, they played 120 minutes for a one-one draw and went to the dreaded PK's (MLS Cup first, dammit!) before Houston won.

Here's how I see it going down. I expect a decent crowd. I'll go with 39,000 (seating for 47,000 at RFK). I see it heading to extra-time again tied at nil-nil. Hard to bet against that when you consider that New England has been in three previous Cup finals, and all were nil-nil at the end of full-time. The Revs just pack it in too much and hope to hit on the counter, but they don't. I see Houston winning it one-nil, with a very late goal (I'll say between minutes 107 and 115) from Joseph Ngwenya.

Interesting stories here, as if Houston wins, they become the first repeat champions since DC United in 1996 & 1997. If New England wins, it's a first title in four attempts.

I think it will be an okay game, but with New England in there, I don't see a lot of offensive chances.

Also next week is Thanksgiving. Huge turkey dinners on Sunday and two on Thursday. I'm loving me some turkey!

Gobble Gobble, baby!

And I'll close with the Jude quote of the week (actually about two weeks old now):
Jude is watching the Wiggles, which he loves. Suddenly, he turns to me and asks "Daddy, what do the Wiggles smell like?"

If only I knew.

Be Seeing You.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Another Cupa Another Cupa Another Cupa This Damn Song!

WHAT I'M LISTENING TO: The Wiggles hit album "Wiggly Wiggly World" and the awesome soundtrack to 2006's best movie The Fountain.

WHAT I'M READING: Some Noam Chomsky. A like this guy a lot. He's intelligent beyond belief and uses that intelligence to form a worldview that isn't compromised by political ideology. Above all else, he's not a hypocrite, and has made his life a mission against hypocrisy. Also, my latest edition of MajorLeagueSoccer magazine.

WHAT I'M WATCHING: Watched the Contender Season Three finale last night. A helluva fight. Usually, championship fights and games tend to be a let down, because the fighters (or teams) are more cautious than usual because everything is on the line. These two fighters went out there to simply box. Also had the MLS first round second leg games this past weekend. And I watched the exceptional documentary "No End in Sight". Go rent it now. Awesome documentary work.

Hitting on a few different things as it's been awhile.

1. Halloween came and went. Had a ton o' fun with my boy Jude. He dressed as a firefighter. We traveled up to the Great White North of southwest Michigan to trick-or-treat in a land where kids still come out in droves for free candy. Saw some very good costumes and some cute kids. Last year, the wife and I came up with some ground rules for Trick-or-Treating. If you are old enough to smoke, you're too old to do it. If you're old enough to drive yourself around, you're too old to do it. I got a new one this year. If I can look at a trick-or-treater and think "nice ass" without being a pedophile, the trick-or-treater is too old. But, in my defense, he had a great ass.

2. My big boy Jude has gone Wiggles crazy. More to the point, he's gone cuckoo for the album (and DVD) Wiggly Wiggly World. We checked it out from the library for three weeks, listening non-stop in the car. Especially track fifteen, which is "Another Cuppa" all about Captain Feathersword's unfortunate addiction to Dorothy's rosy tea. He won't drink anything else. He just keeps asking for another cuppa another cuppa another cuppa another cuppa rosy tea. That's pretty much the whole tune, strung out over four minutes. I'll give it this: it's a good song. But when you've heard it roughly 5,000 times in 21 days, you start to go nuts. So the three weeks was up and we took it back. We checked out another Wiggles CD, which Jude hated. So we went back two days later, and Jude wanted Wiggly Wiggly World again. I caved in, because I'm an easy mark of a father. Not only did we get it for ANOTHER three weeks, but we also checked out the DVD version of it. So I was getting Another cuppa Another cuppa Another cuppa in my car everywhere we went, plus seeing it on the TV twice a day.

But Jude loves it, so what can you do.

I have got him to branch out into other tracks on the disc. Which leads us to...

3. My boy is silly, and has some odd opinions. One of the guest singers on the CD is a chap by the name of Jimmy Little. Jude asked who it was. I said Jimmy Little. He informed me that he didn't like Jimmy Little. Later on, he retracted that, stating for the record that he liked Jimmy Little "some times". Today on the way to daycare, Jude informed me, in these words, that he didn't like Jimmy Little.

"You don't like Jimmy?" I asked.
"Not so much," my three-year old said.

On the way up north for Halloween, to preserve my sanity, we listened to grown up music like Leonard Cohen. Jude listened for roughly half a song before declaring he didn't like it. Two songs in, he was crying.

"What's wrong, Juders?" I asked.
"I'm sad."
"This song is boring me," he answered through tears.

I picked him up from daycare with the classic "Burning for You" in the CD player. Jude heard two guitar strums before shouting out how much he hated it.

4. Jude's latest obsession is the classic film "Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory", which he has renamed "Charlie". It's a great one. It has also brought me to a decision that will improve my life.

I want a Oompa-Loompa.

See, whenever Willy wants something done, he just plays a little tune on his flute thingy and some midget with an orange face and green hair pops up out of nowhere to do his every bidding. How cool would that be? Imagine playing flute and some midget pops up.
"Get me some Arby's," I'd say.
"Put the laundry away."

That would be great. Plus, they don't talk back, but they do sing cool little songs. And the choreography!

Life would be so much better with a green-haired androgynous midget doing everything for me.

5. Well, I got 3 out of 4 in my MLS playoff predictions. I did pick Kansas City, New England, and Houston. But my beloved DC United fell to Chicago, again. I should have called it, and was thinking it. But there's this little voice in my head saying that a loyal fan wouldn't predict his team to lose. So for the fourth time, Chicago knocks DC out. Seven games played, five losses and two ties. Outscored thirteen to two (at least DC finally burst their scoring cherry after 3,000 scoreless minutes). Since I had United winning the whole thing, I'm wrong there. I'm also incorrect in predicting the MLS Cup finalists after two years of calling it before the season started.

That sets up New England Revolution hosting Chicago Fire Thursday night on ESPN2 and Houston Dynamo hosting Kansas City Wizards Saturday night on Fox Soccer Channel. Conference finals are one game affairs, so the winners go on to the MLS Cup. Tough call in the East, as it should be very close. I'm gonna go with the Revs beating the Fire one-nil. I like Houston's chances at home, and see them winning two-nil. That would set up a MLS Cup rematch between New England and Houston, the first time two teams met in successive years. Should be exciting.

Fox Soccer Channel-22
Direct Kick-71

That's 71 games for $79, or $1.11 per game for the year. No more DK games this season. What a helluva bargain!

With only three games left, I'm just gonna finish out the chart here.
ABC-2 (MLS Cup will be on)
ESPN2-27 (Eastern Conference final on)
Fox Soccer Channel-23 (Western Conference final on)
Direct Kick-71 (all done)

So that will end up being 123 games this season. A very good year for MLS.

That's all I got for now.

Be Seeing You.