The Rundown Returns – March 26
Four Things to Watch This Week
1. Hunger Games (Pretty Much Any Movie Theater at Any Time)
I don’t know who I’m kidding; chances are you’ve probably already seen it. We’ll get back to this later.
2. The Daily Show with Jon Stewart (Comedy Central, Monday, 10 p.m. CT)
This show is on probably 150 times a year, so what makes this one so important? This one has Shaq. The Big Diesel himself will make an appearance as Stewart’s guest. I would venture to say Shaq will be gold for the Daily Show and become one of the best semi-regular guests like Will Ferrell.
3. NCAA Final Four (CBS, Saturday evening)
Finally an ending to the Madness. We’ll have our one shining moment that’s almost guaranteed to end with Kentucky cutting down the nets. The Wildcats are clearly the best team left standing and Anthony Davis is just as clearly the best player in the field and has been all year.
4. Your backyard/deck/patio (Anytime; skip work if necessary)
For God’s Sake, it’s late March and 80 degrees! I know we’re going to get assaulted by storms all summer, and by the end of it we may have wasps the size of a Doberman, but right now is the perfect weather. Shun the couch for a while – or even better, drag the TV outside – and take advantage. You’ll wish you had when it’s July and your shoes are melting to the sidewalk.
Famous Dead Person of the Week
Edward the Martyr (Died March 18, 978 AD) – As in King Edward (one of them, anyway). While theories abound regarding who killed him (mom, brother, advisers, doctor, lawyer, Indian Chief), what apparently can’t be disputed is that he developed not one but two cult followings, immediately following his death and again in the sixteenth century. Not bad for a guy who may have been 16 years old when he died.
Three Things I’m Reading (And you should too)
1. Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
At the end of the day, how you feel about these books and the subsequent movies will depend entirely on how you feel about (SPOILER ALERT IF YOU’VE BEEN LIVING UNDER A ROCK) state-sanctioned child murdering and whether or not you appreciate a work of fiction as just that. Being able to detach yourself from characters is a necessary part of consuming fiction in our culture.
That’s my biggest problem with our culture and the movement to “watch out for the best interests of children” – banning books. How this book has avoided high-level scrutiny from parental groups is beyond me, but it’s coming. I could bitch about this for 2,000 words or 100; for your sake, I’ll go 100.
I don’t think you’ll hear of many people that find kids killing other kids to be particularly funny. If you don’t like the book, don’t read it. If you don’t want your kid to watch a movie, don’t take them. This is still a democracy; don’t ruin the fun for everyone else because you’re a close-minded a-hole that sucks as a parent. If you’re kid grows up to be a serial killer, it won’t be because Suzanne Collins wrote a semi-popular FICTION NOVEL about state-sponsored murder – at this point, parent’s should be happy if their kids are reading anything. It will be because you suck as a parent. End of tangent.
Personally, I enjoy the books and the movies – the latter being the truest adaptation of the original work that I can recall seeing in a while. If that makes me a champion of the teenaged murder Olympics well, I suppose that’s a cross that I just have to bear. They’re enjoyable books and movies, so I hope they can be consumed as entertainment and that liberals everywhere don’t have a massive hissy fit because of it.
2. I’m Back for More Cash by Tony Kornheiser
A rare two-book week for me, I also reread some of Kornheiser’s best works. Not everyone knows that one of the hosts of Pardon the Interruption used to write a weekly style column for the Washington Post. Four books were published out of compilations from those old columns. This one came out right around the time PTI was taking off, so Kornheiser pimped it unrelentingly throughout the show. I suppose this proves I am susceptible to advertising.
3. “Prisoner’s Dilemma” by Bill James
This breakdown of the similarities between sports fans and prison inmates is downright disturbing in its accuracy. A must-read given that we’re waist-deep in March Madness, with a full season of Yankees-Red Sox on the horizon. James’ style takes some getting used to, but the man can put thought to paper like few contemporaries.
Quote of the Week Interlude
I’m a great believer in luck. I find the harder I work, the more I have of it.
Two People to Follow on Twitter
1. Wright Thompson (@wrightthompson)
Wright Thompson is the 21st-century version of the Old South writer. He harkens back to the days of Faulkner (or attempts to anyway). A Twitter newbie, he will tweet about sports and food and politics and food and whiskey and food. You can probably see why he’s a close personal favorite of mine.
2. Christopher Titus (@TitusNation)
It’s not often a schmuck like me gets followed by a famous person – although I will bet that 40 percent of those reading this will have no idea who he is. It’s borderline crazy that the third person that followed me was one of my favorite comedians – he even has his “I’m very important and real” check mark from Twitter! Anyway, Titus is funny and awesome and you should follow him.
Song That’s Stuck in My Head (And Now Yours Too)
Joshua James – Coal War
One Nationally Relevant Rant
Last Wednesday morning I exited my apartment to discover my truck covered in what appeared to be stale Cheetoh dust.
Pollen season has returned.
There are many reasons why the Middle Tennessee area is a great place to live, just like there are many reasons why it sucks. The unnatural pollen season has to rank at the very top in the “I hate this place” category.
To put it bluntly, pollen season is worse than getting cold sores on your testicles. Not only do people spend two months sneezing, the yellow-orange gunk flying through the air makes you think it’s raining boogers. It gets on your cars, houses, dog… anything that spends a lot of time outside.
I hate to waste money getting vehicles washed during pollen season, since the stuff will come down for a week no matter what. But I had a few minutes to spare, and I had the dog with me, and I was in fine spirits.
Then the dog pooped on my leg.
My dog is tiny and stupid and fears almost nothing, which is a pretty lethal combination when she decides to leap across the living room using only the furniture. With that as her background, I figured she would be perfectly content laying in the passenger seat chewing a bone while we went through the car wash. I was incorrect.
Once the wash cranked up, she rocketed around the cab of the truck like a speed addict on Red Bull, only coming to a stop when I grabbed her as she was making another bid for the backseat. I grabbed her and held her in my lap, scratching behind her ears in an effort to calm her down.
It was at this point that she pooped on my leg.
Not much; a tiny turdlet at most. And frankly, it could’ve been much worse – she’s peed on several of our friends, and on my wife which was borderline hilarious. Still, it’s disturbing (and smelly) when something defecates on you.
I suppose the moral of the story is this: if you’re stupid enough to wash a truck in the middle of pollen season, don’t be surprised if your dog craps on your leg. No other blog gives you insights like this; you’ll thank me someday.