Saturday, December 26, 2009

Best of Viral Videos 2009

My best of YouTube 2008 was one of the most groundbreaking posts in RTS history. At least, that’s what I tell myself. Why mess with a good formula? Here’s the 2009 edition, although I suppose I should get with the times and call it 2009 Best of Viral Videos. (Not to confused with the best of Vivid Video, which Graham will tackle next week).

I’m a sucker for people falling, first and foremost. Make it a public fall makes it that much better. Wear a Cougar costume just takes it over the top.

I love the mashup spoofs, especially those involving ‘90s movies.

If this lyric doesn’t make your heart melt, I don’t know what will: “Hey shorty, you really lookin’ nice. Let me take you to the movies cause I know what you like.” The best part about that lyric is that he’s on the phone when he says it. She’s lookin nice through a phone call? This video might have to be broken down in full later.

Did I mention I like the mashup spoofs yet? I promise this will be the last one. You can’t top He-Man and Queen.

The best destruction of a door to date.

Unless you play pickup basketball, you can just skip this one. If you play with me, you know which one I am.

This reminds me of South Park’s Alabama Man. That’s a compliment.

I’m not going to post one here because I can’t pick just one, but the Between Two Ferns clips on Funny or Die are hilarious.

As you can see, I’m a big fan of mascots. This one is a little more touching, and by touching, I mean, depressing, pathetic and disturbing.

I’m Ron Burgundy?

There’s times when I feel like the most immature person in the world. Then, I realize, there’s 500,000 other people out there laughing at videos like this too.

A simple fart can get 1.1 million views. Gotta love the Internet.

I’ve probably accounted for 15 of these video’s 12+ million views.

The only cool Boston Celtics fan alive. They need to put this in a time capsule.

I’m not going to lie, my face looks exactly the same when someone puts a beer and slice of pepperoni pizza in front of me.

I don’t think this means what you think it means.

I’d watch soccer more often if you could promise stuff like this would happen.

I love trying to make sense of what’s going on in this clip. Considering I’ve never seen the show makes it a little harder. The 2:45 minute is unintentional comedy gold.

The most amazing basketball shot in the history of the world.

Dumbest invention ever.

This is why I don’t dunk. Well, that and my vertical deficiencies.

I love the local news.


Thursday, December 24, 2009

Chris' favorite songs in 2009 (and not of 2009)

Before I post my top 5 bands of the decade, I’m going to take a slight detour. Since 2009 is ending, I’d like to discuss my favorite songs of the past year. These aren’t all songs that were released in 2009, rather, songs that I started listening to and added to my iTunes in 2009. Let’s discuss, or you can just skip to the playlist at the bottom. (Note that the songs are in chronological order from when they were added).

Flashing Lights by Kanye West
I’m a pretty lame white dude, if you couldn’t tell already. I’m really a niche music person, rarely extending outside of power pop, and guitar driven rock bands. (See my top 20 bands of the decade to get a feel). Every once in a while though I get sucked into some rap/hip hop. I’m always about 3 years late to the party. I knew Kanye West was big but just assumed it was more of the same gangsta rap thing that I don’t really get. Anyway, long story short, I heard a beat on a Six Feet Under commercial and thought, “what is that song? I like it.” I looked it up, found out it came from this song and downloaded it. I was sold.

West Coast by Coconut Records
I’ve spent too much time discussing this band on previous blog posts here and here. This is my favorite and will forever be associated with 2009 for me, specifically my engagement and marriage over the summer. Good times.

Dance with Somebody by Mando Diao
I actually like Mando Diao’s earlier stuff a lot better but this song is still in their wheelhouse. It’s just your basic catchy pop rock tune, but it sticks in your head in a good way, not a Lionel Richie way.

The Royal We by Silversun Pickups
I didn’t like this album half as much as their previous one. However, this song has the right amount of rock.

Idioteque by Calico Horse
I’m a sucker for cover songs. Idioteque is already a pretty chilling Radiohead song. Calico Horse makes it creepy. I could just see this song being played in the midst of some weird animal sacrifice ritual. And you can’t really find a lot of songs that fit that bill, you know?

Use Me by Pete Yorn and Kinky
We’re still in the cover song portion of the playlist. Use Me by Bill Withers is a classic. I like this version simply because it’s nothing like the original. It doesn’t compare, obviously, but at least they gave it a shot and tried to modernize it. Nothing wrong with that.

Everywhere by Vampire Weekend
I haven’t listened to enough Fleetwood Mac. There’s a decent portion of ‘70s music that I never got around too. I like “Go Your Own Way” and “Man of the World.” After hearing this cover, I’m starting to think I should go back and add some Fleetwood Mac to my repertoire. I’ll put it on my music to-do list along with about 3,000 other bands. Oh yeah, I like Vampire Weekend. Thought I should say that.

Can’t Tell Me Nothing by Kanye West
As mentioned above, I was about 3 years late to the Kanye party. I chalked “Flashing Lights” up to me randomly liking a hip hop song. But then this song stuck with me after The Hangover. I guess Kanye’s cool for a reason. Plus, I’m a pretty hard-headed guy so I can easily sing along to “you can’t tell me nuttin’.”

One Wing by Wilco
Wilco reminds me of Tim Duncan. They’re one of the best at what they do yet they’re not flash enough to garner the right amount of praise. They’re solid, dependable, respectable. They don’t take seasons, or albums, off. I’m forever excited to see what they do next even though I can pretty much guess what it’ll be.

Paradise Cove by Pete Yorn
Graham hated Pete’s last album but I don’t see it. Sure, he’s mellowed out but haven’t we all?

The Golden State by Eddie Vedder & Corin Tucker
This song sounds like Eddie is sitting in some lodge wearing a flannel shirt and signing to a group of 14-year old campers. So what? Well, I like the concept of camp. And it needs a soundtrack, and this should be it.

Can’t Say No by The Helio Sequence
I feel like there’s two types of psychedelic music. There’s the jam-band music that was inspired by The Grateful Dead, and there’s the prog-rock version made popular by Pink Floyd. I’m not a jam band guy. I do like some of the spacey, psychedelic pop. This would classify in my book.

(If You’re Wondering If I Want You To) I Want You To by Weezer
Weezer is a tough band for me. I feel like their first two albums were the soundtrack of my high school years. It’s hard to dump a band that carries that weight. But since Pinkerton, they’ve ebbed and flowed. I originally didn’t like this album that much but it’s grown on me with each listen. This song is classic power pop.

Keep Me In Mind by Little Joy
Good band title. This song is just a little joy. I like the lack of production. Sounds just like a couple of dudes playing in their garage.

The Grey Estates by Wolf Parade
If “This Heart’s On Fire” is a juicy hamburger, then this is the French fries.

11th Dimension by Julian Casablanca
I missed The Strokes until I heard this song. It’s the same thing.

Rough Gem by Islands
I find bands randomly. I only have 1 or 2 friends I discuss music with and both of them are out of town. So I’m essentially stuck listening to the same songs over and over again until I finally decide to find something new. I was watching a video with Jason Schwartzman and Wes Anderson walk around Borders and talking about music and movies they liked. Schwartzman said he liked this band. I listened to this song and youtube and was hooked. It’s just that simple, or that random.

Follow Me Around by Radiohead
I’m a Radiohead fan, but not a diehard. I have all of their albums, think they’ve one of the best live bands around and probably the most important band of my lifetime. I say that I’m not diehard because I don’t have the 8,000 bootlegs and B-sides. I just heard this one about a month ago. I’m sure it’s been around for years. Who cares? If you haven’t heard it, it’s still new to you.

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Thursday, December 17, 2009

Chris' Decade of Music Part 3

Picking a best of the decade list has a few gray areas because, well, time changes everything. The more I’ve heard a song, the luster comes off. It becomes like leftover pizza. Sure, it’s still pizza, but after hearing a song 1,000 times, it just isn’t’ the same. At the same time, some new music is instantly gratifying but doesn’t hold up over time. It’s like Little Caesar’s. It tastes alright given that it’s hot pizza, but tomorrow, you’ll regret it. I’m not making any sense. What I’m trying to say is that my 10th band on my best of decade list is only 10 months old to me.

10. Coconut Records
I love this band. It’s what Weezer would’ve turned into if Rivers wasn’t obsessed with rappers and heavy metal riffs. It’s clever, it’s catchy, it’s pop music at it’s finest. I can’t say that it has some earth-shattering meaning or that it’s going to change the world, but you know what, screw it, music is allowed to be fun. Bonus points for fact that this band is simply Jason Schwartzman. I can’t get enough of the guy. I like the band, I like his old band (Phantom Planet) and his puts out good movies too (Wes Anderson movies/I Heart Huckabees/etc.). I like this band and don’t care if they’ve only been on my playlist for 10 months. They crack the top 10 based on what they’ve done and my belief that they’re not Little Caesar’s. They’re deep dish Chicago-style.

9. Snowglobe
I’m not going obscure just for the sake of it. It’s a local Memphis band that I’ve constantly amazed by. It’s psychedelic pop with a touch of depth. The song “Dreamworks” seemed to sum up my life at the time. It’s rare to feel like you’re listening to a song about your life, but that’s how I felt on the cusp on 23. “You don’t know where you are going but tonight you’re gonna jump.” I thought they were talking about me, or to me, or identified with me. That counts for something. And this isn’t some highly personal band that other people can’t enjoy. They’re hipster popular here in Memphis but don’t hold it against them. They’ve got some chops.

8. The Killers
I don’t feel bad about going with The Killers when I see Graham with Coldplay in his top 10. The Killers are a band that was overhyped, overexposed and overplayed. That’s their first album in a nutshell. But go back and listen to Hot Fuss now and it holds up. It’s probably the premier dance-rock-pop album of the decade. We’ll look back on parts of the ‘00s and compare them to some of the cheesier parts of the ‘80s. I know we will. But the Killers are better than that.

7. Ben Folds
I’m going to confess that I wasn’t a big Ben Folds Five fan. I thought they had some alright songs but thought they were just as much of a shtick (piano rockers!) as anything else. I started to change my mind when The Unauthorized Biography Of Reinhold Messner was released late in the ‘90s. I fully came around with Rockin’ the Suburbs (go figure, considering we named our blog after it). Ben Folds has become the mentoring voice of the aging dorky white suburban kid. He’s got 10+ years on me but I can’t help but listen to his songs and think, “I get it.” This song/video combo sums up the ‘00s for me, you know, other than terrorism, war and economic depression.

6. Beck
I dare someone to find me a better 4-year album span than Beck put up between ’98 and ’02. Mutations, Modern Vultures and Sea Change. Just listen to Modern Vultures and Sea Change and explain to me how that’s done by the same person. I’m amazed that he can go from fun neo-disco to acoustic break-up emo and pull them both off. Beck seems like one of those guys that would be successful at whatever he did, you know, so long as it was off the beaten path. I don’t listen to Guero as much as I should but like The Information and Modern Guilt. Well done Beck.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Bands of the Decade continued (Chris' 15-11)

Graham continued his countdown and let it slip that Death Cab for Cutie would be higher on his list. Then again, he let his Canadian bias get in the way already so I’m expecting to see Celine Dion ruin his credibility when he gets to the top 5. Enough about Graham’s music, he’s my bands of the decade continuance.

15. The Dandy Warhols
Thirteen Tales from Urban Bohemia would make my top 10 albums of the decade. It’s pop, it’s grunge, it’s mellow. It’s a roller coaster of awesomeness. They followed that up with Welcome to the Monkey House which has the uber-catchy dance-rock song “We Used to be Friends” and the tongue-in-check “The Last High.” I guess I’m slipping in my old age, but I didn’t realize The Dandys had so many albums come out this decade. I’ll have to check the others out, although I already know that Odditorium of the Warlords is fair. Bonus points for this band being in the spectacular documentary DiG! Here’s one of the best songs of the decade.

14. Badly Drawn Boy
Aka Damon Grough who plays music like he’s the British love-child of Elliott Smith and Ben Folds, minus the heroin addiction and sarcasm. Badly Drawn Boy has clever pop music that’s heavy on piano and serious enough without being depressing. He’s had 5 albums in the decade with Have You Fed the Fish being the best. Listen to this and thank me later.

13. Foo Fighters
I know Graham will have the Foos in his top 10 and most likely his top 5. I’m completely okay with this. They’re a great band. I know what I’m getting with the Foo Fighters every time they release an album. It’s going to have some hard rock songs, some catchy riffs and lyrics and one or two mellow acoustic songs. It’s a good formula that’s been working and they’re easily one of the best live bands out there. I’ve only got one problem with this band. “Everlong” is so awesome and nothing else they do comes close. They’re judged against themselves and they fail. It’s an impossible test to pass considering music doesn’t mean as much to me or carry the same importance as it did when I was in my late teens. I’m not sure if it’s the same for everyone. Regardless, 13 is as high as I could get for this band this decade. It’s still top 15 guys! Here’s my favorite Foo Fighters song of the decade from a show I was at:

12. Pete Yorn
I’m not as down on good ole’ Pete as Graham is. Then again, I haven’t listed to any of his duet album with Scarlett Johansson. All I know about Pete Yorn is this: I like him. I know that his last 2 albums aren’t as good as his first 2, but they still hold up. I really like “Paradise Cove” from his album earlier this year. There’s nothing wrong with mellowing out when you get older Graham, come on.

11. Red Hot Chili Peppers
My argument against the Foo Fighters is that they peaked with “Everlong” and every song is held to that standard. My argument for the Red Hot Chili Peppers is that they’ve progressed immensely from their early ‘90s post-punk/funk/alternative days. I can easily say that their best albums are their last three (two of them this decade).

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

The Decade in Music - Part 1a.

I originally proposed to Graham about 5 months ago that we get a jump on the “best of the decade” thing that’s going to happen and list our favorite new bands of the decade. Naturally, we procrastinated and I ended up deleting my original list. So what does Graham do over Thanksgiving? He proposes we do our top 20 bands of the decade. How novel.

Since Graham gave his back-story on the differences between 2000 and 2009 in his life, here’s mine. On the cusp of 2000, I was living in my first apartment, had just finished my 1st semester of college with a 4.0 and was kinda hoping YK2 turned the world into Mad Max. Now, I’m married, have 2 college degrees and still kinda wish Y2k turned the world into Mad Max.

Before I get into my top 20 bands of the decade, here’s who just missed the cut.

I really like some of these bands but if they only have 1 album that’s good, or great, I can’t call them a band of the decade. I’m sure they’ll be hurt. These bands include: Vampire Weekend, Evan Dando, Justin Clayton, Bloc Party and MGMT.

If the majority of your music in the decade was released after you died, then you missed the cut as well. I’m talking about Elliott Smith. I guess I shouldn’t say “he missed the cut,” huh?

A few bands get an incomplete cause I need to listen to them more: Earlimart, Wolf Parade and Of Montreal.

Lastly, these guys put out some good music but nothing I would put in the “amazing” category: Sam Roberts, Phantom Planet, Weezer, Mando Diao and Silversun Pickups. Weezer is one of my favorites but The Red Album is so bad that I have to penalize them.

20. The Hives
When making out this list I try and remember how good the music was one it first came out and not just how it sounds now. The Hives were the garage band du jour that I jumped on, as opposed to The White Stripes. Plus, bonus points for The Hives being one of the best live shows I’ve seen.

19. Coldplay
It’s pretty cool to dislike Coldplay these days. It’s not that hard considering Chris Martin turned out to be a nut and they push Apple more than Justin Long. But how can they not be a band of the decade? They’re absolutely huge and it’s because Parachutes and A Rush of Blood to the Head were solid. Plus, this song still holds up. It’s even better cause it shows how nutty Chris Martin is.

18. The Flaming Lips
I really like The Flaming Lips simply because most of their early music is terrible. After loving The Soft Bulletin and Yoshimi I went back and listed to their earlier stuff and was amazed at how bad it was. It’s night and day. Anyway, I’d put Yoshimi in the top 10 of the decade and At War With the Mystics is decent. Plus, The Flaming Lips did some of the best covers of the decade as well (Radiohead, Kylie Minogue, Queen).

17. Nada Surf
Easily the most underrated band of the decade. They’re on the cusp of popularity mostly because they were a one hit wonder in the ‘90s. I don’t even know what made me buy Let Go but it’s on of my favorite albums start to finish. There isn’t a weak link in there. It’s a great winter album too, pretty mellow, not too depressing. Their last album was pretty average, but The Weight is a Gift is pretty good as well.

16. Death Cab for Cutie/Postal Service
If I can’t include Ben Gibbard’s side project, Postal Service, then they wouldn’t make the cut. Death Cab is pretty good. Other than Transatlanticism, everything else seems to be pretty normal. But the Postal Service album, Give Up, is one of the best of the decade. Here’s my favorite:

I'm guessing Graham will throw out his next 5 and we'll go from there.

Monday, November 30, 2009

The Decade in Music - Part 1

10 years ago, I was making $22,000 a year as a small-town newspaper reporter while living alone in a studio apartment. In the intervening 10 years I got a job in the NBA, moved with that team to Memphis, got married, had a kid, moved to Portland, bought a house, and became an extraordinary Wii Mario Kart player.

Now that’s a decade.

With the aughts coming to an end, it’s time to look back, specifically to the music. In my triumphant return to sporadic blogging, I will spend the next few weeks counting down the 20 best artists of the decade, in increments of five at a time.

A few caveats: there will be no rap or country on this list. I don’t like either genre and I’m not throwing in Jay-Z or Keith Urban just to make it look like I have a wide array of music tastes. Also, there was a time I was much more invested in music, knew all the up-and-coming indie bands and moaned years later when they got big. But now I’m not really in a position to stay up until 3 a.m. listening to five new CDs, while dissecting the lyrics and liner notes. So this won’t exactly be the hippest list, but that’s what happens when you become old and lame.

With that out of the way, on to the list:

Honorable mentions:

These bands were in the running for this prestigious list, but ultimately got squeezed out: Weezer, Josh Ritter, U2 (only for All That You Can’t Leave Behind, and nothing since), The Decemberists, Phoenix (It took a while, but 1901 really grew on me, and Lisztomania is also very good. Nice breakout performance), Franz Ferdinand (their eponymous debut is terrific, everything since has been a desperate attempt to recapture that magic), the Shout Out Louds and Modest Mouse.

#20: MGMT
There weren’t many songs that were more fun in the decade than Time to Pretend. A hopelessly catchy danceable song skewering celebrities who become train wrecks since they have the world at their feet and don’t know what to do with it. Also, my bet is that Lindsay Lohan has no idea the song is meant to be ironic.

#19: …And You Will Know Us By The Trail Of Dead

I’d caught on to these guys after hearing Relative Ways off their Source Tags and Codes album, and eagerly bought their follow up, Worlds Apart. It was a decent album with a few standouts, including a song called The Rest Will Follow. It was an enjoyable enough album, then a few weeks after its release they were on Letterman, and did The Rest Will Follow live.

And they blew the fucking roof off.

To this day this remains my favorite late night performance of all-time, especially when punctuated with Paul Shaffer's "Whoa!" at the end of the performance. And more importantly, the strength of that performance, along with their song Source Tags and Codes being used in a tremendous Friday Night Lights scene, gets them #19 on my list.

#18: Explosions in the Sky
Hey, speaking of Friday Night Lights…The preferred band of the best television show of the decade (that’s right) gets in at #18.

In 1999, when I still liked Limp Bizkit (I don’t want to talk about it), if you’d told me in 10 years I’d be digging a band doing sweeping 12-minute songs with no singing, I would have told you that’d be as likely as a pro sports team moving to Memphis.

But here they are. And really, is it even possible not to like these guys? A lot of bands write songs that are anthemic, but how many write songs that are epic? This is epic music. Every time I hear it, I feel like I can lift the nearest car. This is big music, this is music they should be using in the climactic scenes of movies. So how is it that only the producers of the Friday Night Lights movie and tv show have figured this out?

You know what, I don’t care. Check out The Birth and Death of the Day and tell me you don’t get a chill:

#17: Green Day
Talk about a career progression. They went from writing snarky two-minute punk/pop songs to writing the anthemic (there’s that word again) American Idiot album. And that was a hell of an album, especially when you consider the best song is a sprawling multi-part, nine-minute opus that encapsulates modern disaffected teenagers. So yeah, they came a long way from All By Myself.

#16: Bloc Party
They’d be much higher on this list had they not completely botched their second album. Still, you can’t take away the greatness of Silent Alarm. That album jumps from anger to outrage to fun to earnest and rarely hits a false note.

I don’t know what it says about me that my favorite song is a straight forward love song that contains exactly 59 words, but here you go (and Here We Are):

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Ole Miss-Tennessee preview, er, sorta

Your morals and personal code aren’t written down on a list and followed each day. They’re developed over time. Sometimes you don’t even know how you feel about a subject until a line in the sand is drawn and you have to pick a side. For me, that day is today. I have to pick who to cheer for in the Tennessee-Ole Miss football game.

Living in the South means that you have to pay attention to college football. If you have balls, I mean. I can’t be totally invested in college football for the following reasons:

1. The outcome of most games is easy to predict. The talent discrepancy between the haves and have-nots is the difference in 95% of the games.
2. There is no prevalent fantasy game that revolves around college football.
3. My alma mater, the University of Memphis, sucks.

Regardless, football is football and I watch. Since, as mentioned above, I live in the South and my alma mater sucks, I spend the majority of my time cheering against teams. It’s fun and it’s easy. My two favorite teams to hate are Tennessee and Ole Miss. But today, my plan of cheering against these guys is ruined. They play each other. What’s a half-hearted pessimist to do. Let’s break down the pros and cons of each school and figure out who in the hell to cheer for.

The Cities

Knoxville looks like a glorified truck stop. I hate it. I don’t know how it’s scientifically possible but everywhere you walk is up a hill. The only redeeming part of Knoxville is that I once saw a Krystal-eating contest there. This is both awesome and pathetic when talking about a city’s most redeeming quality.

Oxford, it’s quaint, it’s got some trees and Hardees, so yeah, it’s alright. I can see the value in this place, if, and only if, every Ole Miss graduate didn’t talk about Oxford like it was the location of God’s orgasm during creation.

Winner: Oxford

The Coaches

Lane Kiffin is a brash, arrogant SOB. However, as far as I can tell, he hasn’t done anything to deserve this. I’m pretty sure the only thing he’s done to date is get fired by Al Davis and be proud of losing games in a somewhat competitive fashion.

Houston Nutt is the ideal Ole Miss coach. He looks like the type of guy that would get shot by Dick Cheney while hunting, which is what Ole Miss fans are looking for.

Winner: Houston Nutt

The Teams

Tennessee players commit armed robbery with pellet guns.

Ole Miss players can’t read (see the last paragraph here) and steal from hotel rooms.

Winner: Lawyers

The Cheer

Rocky Top Tennessee is hands down the worst song to ever be created. I’d rather be stuck in the Branch Davidian Compound and be forced to hear “These Boots are Made for Walkin’” about 3,000 times before I hear Rocky Top again.

Hotty Toddy is a drunken rant. I can accept this. However, to hear the same drunken rant 272 times before you enter the football stadium is one too many. The good news is that you don’t have to hear the chant that much during the game since Ole Miss usually sucks and the fans have nothing to cheer for.

Winner: No one

The Fans

This is really what I care about. I don’t really want Tennessee or Ole Miss to lose because I care about the actual players or coaching staff. I’ve come into contact with too many of their fans and it brings me joy to think about these people experiencing loss.

Tennessee fans on the east side of the state are mostly hillbilly conservative clichés that bleed orange and white, drink moonshine, beat their wife, sleep with their cousin and vote for the white guy, er, Republican. (I can’t really vouch for any of this since I’ve been to Knoxville a total of 3 times and hung out with friends from the suburbs, but I don’t mind writing about stereotypes.) Tennessee fans here in Memphis drive me nuts. Most of them attended Tennessee for 1-2 semesters, drank a lot of beer, failed their classes and had their parents make them come home. They then went to the University of Memphis but proudly remain UT fans, you know, cause they spent a total of 4 months there and all. Drives me nuts. Then again, you have these other people who, for some unbeknownst reason, cheer for Tennessee in football and then the University of Memphis in basketball. They’re frontrunners. I can’t stand this either. Look buddy, pick a school and cheer for them. It’s not that hard. People don’t cheer for Ohio State basketball and Michigan football. Ugh.

Ole Miss males all have haircuts like this. It’s amazing. Seriously, go to Oxford on a Saturday and you’ll see 10,000 20-40 year old dudes with this haircut. It’s almost like they are genetically predetermined to go to Ole Miss. These guys generally drink way too much, invented date-rape, wear shirts and ties to football games and vote for the white guy, er, Republican. They hate every other SEC school and constantly have an inflated sense of their team. Every preaseason they talk about how bad ass their team is, although most years they end up somewhere between 3-7 and 7-3. I’ll give them credit for one thing: they don’t cheer for Memphis basketball. Thank God.

Winner: No one

So it looks like the final score is in favor of Ole Miss by a margin of 2-0-3. However, I just remember that I picked Tennessee in my work pool, so screw it, I’ll cheer for anything that gives me a chance at money. Go Vols. I just threw up in my mouth.


Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Rockin the Suburbs Book Preview Continued

A while back I gave a preview of my coffee table book idea, "Homoerotic Sports Pictures." Here's the second preview:

Does this guy ever live this picture down? I bet his friends made t-shirts out of it.

What are the chances he's saying, "You smell good?"

He's not allowed with 20 feet of a school yet he can ref wrestling matches?

Europeans are weird.

As far as homoerotic sports pictures go, this is the Mona Lisa.

Now that's what I call going for the ball, zing!

No wonder this is Graham's favorite sport.

This is the opposite of how I'd celebrate something.

The Lakers are always screwing someone over, aren't they?

This gives no meaning to "taking a charge."


Monday, November 2, 2009

Thursday, October 29, 2009

YouTube Friday

It's a little early, but happy Friday. If you didn't know why they called him Rampage, here's a good clip why.


Thursday, October 22, 2009

The Rant

I wouldn’t say that RTS is back, but we’re on the right track. What better way to bring 30-something white men together than to complain about inane things that matter not? (PS: I’m 29, but it’s easier just to round up).

I was watching Wayne’s World last night on Fuse and there was a commercial for Fuse music programming. The ad said something along the lines of, “Check out Fuse’s new music experience every Friday at midnight, featuring music videos, news and tour information for hot bands such as Paramore and Cold War Kids and classics like Nirvana and Pearl Jam.” Now this is a show I have to watch. They’re going to give me news and tour information about Nirvana? Holy hell.

I watched the most recent The Office this morning from my DVR. There was a special mayor election in Memphis Thursday night when the recording took place. During the entire episode of The Office I had to watch half of the TV devoted to updated results. First, the guy that won was winning in a landslide. Do I really need a scrolling update to see that someone went from being up 50,000 votes to being up 55,000 votes over a 30 minute span? Also, do I really need to see EVERY candidate’s result. Thanks for telling me that Joe Crazy currently has 13 votes. I really need this update. And while we’re here, I think I could get at least 100 votes for mayor. Who in the hell are these people running and getting 13 votes? Lastly, why does local news impose itself? I should start a morning news update podcast or weblog and here’s how it would go: Murder, Car Jacking, Corrupt Local Government, Memphis Tigers, Memphis Grizzlies, School Violence, Weather.Done.

Pictures like this make me feel better about my high school experience.

I was watching college football today and ABC was counting down the top 30 plays of the last 30 years. #21 was the infamous Colorado 5th down play against Missouri to win the game. Really, an official’s error that cost a team a chance at a national upset is what you would consider one of the best plays of the last 30 years? I would say that’s one of the worst 30 plays. And while we’re here, how did AP voters continue to vote for Colorado as a top team when they had to have 5 downs to win a game? Couldn’t you just rank them as the 10th best team for the rest of the year to balance that out? And yes, I’m ranting about something that happened almost 20 years ago.

What is up with ad men these days? First, Keystone Light is advertising that their beer is “smooth.” Is this really the road you want to go down Keystone, talking about how smooth your beer is? Why don’t you just say, “Hell, it’s cheap and it’ll get you drunk.” And Macy’s was adverting about their low everyday prices and then showed some crappy sweater for $40. Yes, I’m ranting about cheap beer and Macy’s at the same time. Both companies should be ashamed.

And this is why Graham and I blog together. While I was compiling my rant about lame advertisements, Graham emailed me this gem.

So Portland has been granted an MLS expansion team for the 2011 season, pending a new stadium. Anyway, last week they unveiled a new marketing campaign that reads like this: "Barcelona, Milan, Liverpool, Madrid, Portland. We're finally on the world's pitch".Are you fing kidding me? I'm sorry, did the MLS suddenly merge with the European premier leagues? I know I don't follow soccer, but that seems like the kind of thing I would have heard about. Seriously, that ad is just infuriating. If there were any truth to it, it would read:"Columbus. Kansas City. Salt Lake City. Portland. We're finally among the mid-level cities trying hard to be major league." And you know what else I hate about soccer? When North America tries to import European teams. Don't call it a pitch, it's an f-ing field. Stop it, MLS. Just stop it.

Chris and Graham

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Our 1 Year Anniversary....time for a break

How do you define laziness? How about 2 guys that can't maintain a steady blogging schedule because they have too much football, basketball, hockey and TV to keep up with. Yep, that's us. We're taking a break.

Chris & Graham

Friday, October 2, 2009

YouTube Friday

I love how dated this video is, not just the Vanilla Ice joke, but back when Jim Carrey wasn't uber-famous and still cutting edge. Also, where does In Living Colour rank on sketch comedies? Third behind SNL and Chappelle Show?


Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Remember when...

These things were considered cool.

What's even funnier, weren't these banned because they were dangerous? Yep, check out this NY Times story from 1990. Hilarious. To think, in a 9-year span, schools went from being worried about plastic bracelets to school shootings.


Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Week 3 Picks

When you go 6 for 16 and find yourself one game out of last place in your pick’em pool, maybe the only purpose of writing a preview column is for people to laugh at you. Having people laugh at me didn’t stop me from getting married, and neither will this. Here’s a breakdown of some of this weeks key games.

San Francisco 49ers (+7.5) at Minnesota Vikings

Chris: Congrats to the 49ers for being this year’s Dolphins. I think the 49ers are tough enough to keep this game close. As a matter of fact, I think this game is boringly close, like 16-12 Vikings.

Graham: Last week I said San Francisco sucked. And you know what- they don’t. They’re not good, mind you, but they don’t suck. Sucking is John Mayer. The 49ers are more like Snow Patrol. Boring, inoffensive, nothing really noteworthy. That said, they can keep it close. Minnesota wins, but the Niners cover.

Green Bay Packers (-6.5) at St. Louis Rams

Chris: Thank God for the Packers schedule. They had the easiest road to 3-0, and yet, they’ll be 2-1. Fantasy points galore for Packers players.

Graham: I don’t want to talk about the packers right now, other than to say they’re going to cover. And if they don’t, I quit. Not just the blog, everything. Life. I swear.

Atlanta Falcons (+4.5) at New England Patriots

Chris: My initial instinct was to pick the Falcons. Then I remember that my instinct is retarded. The Falcons don’t play that well on the road, the Pats are coming off a loss and everyone is probably thinking Brady is done. It’s never good when someone is counting out the Pats. New England wins by double digits.

Graham: What was that about counting out the Pats? I’m game! They look terrible right now. This is my upset special of the week. Falcons win outright.

Tennessee Titans (+2.5) at New York Jets

Chris: Classic letdown game for the Jets. Plus, the Titans are the single fat girl at last call, desperate.

Graham: I have nothing to say. Titans.

Miami Dolphins (+5.5) at San Diego Chargers

Chris: The Dolphins showed some life on Monday even though they gave the game away during one of the worst 2-minute drills in the history of football. The Dolphins have more trouble scoring than the single fat girl before last call (that was my Geoff Calkins same joke twice in a post special). San Diego wins big.

Graham: Honest to God, how did the Dolphins lose that game? They let Indy have the ball for less than 15 minutes! The Colts’ defenders were sucking wind! Ted Ginn, you idiot, how did that ball slip through your hands. What a gut wrenching loss. You don’t recover from games like that one. San Diego walks, and Miami’s on their way to a 4-12 season.

Indianapolis Colts (+1.5) at Arizona Cardinals

Chris: Isn’t this the same Cardinals team that lost at home to the 49ers, and now, they’re going to beat the Colts? Anytime Indy is getting points, I’m picking them.

Graham: Listen- if Miami can completely dominate Indy, why can’t Arizona? I see a big game for the Cards. Arizona gets the nod.

Tax dollars at work

I wonder if the police commish was embarrassed at the cops playing the Wii, or their bowling score.


Sunday, September 20, 2009

Sunday afternoon ramblings

Is there anything dumber than praising a team for losing by 10? I just don’t get it. Tennessee had the perfect gameplan for keeping the game close by not taking any chances, but also the perfect gamplan for not winning the game. They were also one red zone Tebow fumble away from being down 30-6. Yeah, congrats Lane Kiffin, you win the Geoff Calkins “Coach Earned Respect” award. Not worth anything, however.

I was watching Rounders on Friday night and during a scene at a gentlemen’s club the song “I Hate Myself for Loving You,” by Joan Jett is playing. Most sports fans know this song now as the Sunday Night Football song by Faith Hill. So in the middle of Rounders I’ve got the lyrics, “I’ve been waiting all day for Sunday night….the NFL rocks on NBC…” repeating in my head, during Rounders. First off, NFL intro songs shouldn’t even exist as no football fan cares about this crap. But if stupid TV execs insist on remaking songs with NFL-themed lyrics then they need to make sure this song won’t ruin good movies. Can we have a committee for this? Seriously, if someone takes the theme from Braveheart and remakes it with Britney Spears for the Super Bowl, I just might go postal.

I’ve got TJ Houshmanzadeh on my fantasy team. Is Matt Hassleback getting injured a good thing or bad thing?

Norv Turner just elected to kick a field goal from the 6-yard-line on 3-and-Goal with 10 seconds left in the first half. Really Norv, you can’t just throw a fade route to one of your 6’4 receivers? This play wouldn’t take 5 seconds? How does Norv Turner have a job?

Cookies and cream ice cream is easily the best lazy Sunday dessert. I won’t even hear any other arguments.

Ed Hochuli made the following call today: “False start by the entire offensive line.” It almost made the Packers-Bengals game worth watching.

You know what is very underrated: the cold pint glass. I’ve been keeping a few in my freezer recently and it takes my beer to the next level. Why isn’t this done more often? Here’s the glass I’ve been rocking. It cost $6. Purchase this now, or whatever your favorite brew is.

Tom Brady looks mentally broken. I love it. I bet Bridget Moynahan sends Bernard Pollard thank you notes and gifts every week.

Why does Jay Cutler always look hungover? Seriously, he looks like this at all times.

And I had no idea that the most famous Jay Cutler was a body builder. Type Jay Cutler into google images.

I’m playing the same guy in both my fantasy football games. He got a big fat 0 out of Greg Jennings in both. What are the chances of that happening? 1 in million? I wish there was a numbers genius that posted odds of things happening before and after Sunday. Wouldn’t you feel better if the numbers guy posted on Monday that your heartbreaking loss in fantasy football had a once-in-a-lifetime chance of happening, sorta like seeing an asteroid hit Mars or something. I know this would help me deal with fantasy flukes. I need help.

Who watches "The Mentalist"? I don’t know one person. Who is the target audience? Some shows I don’t watch but understand how they are popular with other audiences, like, you know, "Jon and Kate Plus 8" with women. But "The Mentalist"? I have no idea who would want to watch this show. Slow people I guess.

Why aren’t tater tots more popular? And why aren’t there cheese-stuffed tots?

I love people who change their last name pronunciation. For instance, it’s not Willie Colon, it’s pronounced “cologne.” We all know it’s colon buddy. You aren’t fooling anyone. If you’re going to lie about the pronunciation, you might as well just change the whole damn name and be done with it. Or give yourself a cool nickname, like, “Willie the Colon Cleanser” and say things like “I hit people so hard they crap themselves.” Yep, this is how I spend my creative energy.


Week 2's 11 Things I Think I Think

1: I think the Green Bay Packers are in trouble. Their offensive line has more leaks than the guys in the Flomax commercials. Aaron Rodgers can’t get set in the pocket and they can’t open up the running game. Problem is, how do you fix an offensive line two weeks into the season? You can’t bring in new guys, they’d take weeks to learn schemes, play calls, etc. They’re stuck with what they have. And I’m legitimately worried for Rodgers’ health when they take on Jared Allen and the Vikings this season.

2: Speaking of Green Bay, I think Dom Capers and the rest of the Packers’ defensive coaches need to be told there’s such a thing as the screen pass, and they might want to come up with ways of defending it. All Carson Palmer had to do was find his receivers in the flat and it was an automatic first down.

Oh, and there’s a thing called a running game. Try to stop it. Cedric Benson should not be carving you up like that.

3: I think I couldn’t possibly be more bitter about the Packers. This is the easy part of their schedule. It only gets worse from here.

4: Speaking of crappy running games, Steve Slaton ladies and gentlemen! I think that’s two straight stinkbombs for my #1 back. If it weren’t for Drew Brees and Tony Gonzalez, I might not score any fantasy points. Picking last in a 14-team league sucks.

5: I think I’m wondering what will get the lower television ratings- the Oakland-Kansas City game, or Monday’s premiere of Accidentally on Purpose? Actually, what am I talking about, terrible CBS comedies always seem to find their audience- Two and a Half Men, Rules of Engagement, New Adventures of Old Christine. Thank God for How I Met Your Mother and Big Bang Theory.

6: I think I hate to admit that the Peyton Manning-Justin Timberlake commercials crack me up. I think I also hate to admit that Justin Timberlake is consistently funny when he’s on SNL. But he still sucks.

7: I think Chris Johnson is Tennessee’s best receiver.

8: I think Chris might be right about JaMarcus Russell being the worst number overall pick of all-time. Even Kwame Brown is embarrassed for him.

9: I think I wonder if the NFL Network’s Red Zone Channel anchor has a bucket under his desk he just pees into. I mean, the guy has to sit there all day since the red zone opportunities never end. How does he do it? Does he not consume any liquids for 12 hours? I probably peed 13 times in the morning games alone.

10: I think I’m incredulous that my fantasy opponent got late touchdowns from both Reggie Bush and Darren McFadden. I was really, really lucky to win this week. But hey, 2-0!

11: I think I won’t be doing 11 Things I Think I Think next week because of work commitments. Be strong.

Friday, September 18, 2009

NFL Week 2 Preview (Part 2)

In case you missed part I, you can read it here.

Seattle Seahawks (+1.5) at San Francisco 49ers

Chris: The winner of this game has the inside track on the division. They should be 2 games up on Arizona and St. Louis and a game up on their loser of this game. I don’t know what to make of either of these teams. Seattle looked good but they always do at home and they were playing the Rams. Meanwhile, San Fran didn’t win so much as Arizona lost. Ugh…Seattle.

Graham: Uh, do people not remember that the 49ers suck? Seriously. Shaun Hill is their quarterback. Frank Gore had something like 30 yards on 20 carries last week (I’m too lazy to look up the exact figure). Yes, they beat the defending NFC champs, but still. They suck. Seattle.

Tampa Bay Bucs (+4.5) at Buffalo Bills

Chris: Who in the hell would watch this game? There are maybe, MAYBE, three relevant fantasy players in this game. There is no storyline. Neither team is interesting. They might as well simulate this game on Madden and save everyone some time. I’ll take the Bucs and the points.

Graham: When I wrote the preview for the Oakland-Kansas City game, I used the “Who would ever watch this game” meme, not having read through Chris’ preview and seeing this. Since that got posted yesterday, this writeup from Chris is obsolete. Does that count as a pwn? I’m not cool enough to know. Anyway, a pick…Buffalo.

Chris: Considering I wrote everything before you did anything, then no, you didn’t “pwn” me.

Pittsburgh Steelers (-2.5) at Chicago Bears

Chris: I love the fact that Jay Cutler is 3,275 times better than Kyle Orton but thanks to one of the flukiest plays in recent history, Orton got a win last week while Cutler wet himself repeatedly in his Bears debut. I think Cutler plays a lot better but the Bears still lose by a field goal.

Graham: In the first half against Green Bay last week, Cutler and his receivers were more out of synch than Kanye West and Taylor Swift (oh, snap!). It was a joy to watch. Sure, he was a lot better in the second half, but even without Troy Polamalu, I have to believe Pittsburgh’s defense isn’t exactly the antidote to Chicago’s offensive problems. Steelers get the call.

Cleveland Browns (+3.5) at Denver Broncos

Chris: Did the NFL just decide to pit every crappy team against each other this week? Seriously, Browns-Broncos? I’d rather learn how to perform a circumcision than watch this game. Speaking of circumcision, is that one of the top 5 scariest words to type into google images? Name some more for more please. Oh yeah, I’ll take the Broncos.

Graham: You did it, didn’t you, Chris? You typed circumcision into Google Image just to see what would happen. I know you did. Admit it! Denver’s the pick.

Baltimore Ravens (+4.5) at San Diego Chargers

Chris: Ray Lewis is the scariest guy in the NFL. He’s been the scariest guy in the NFL for the last 12 years or so. How does that happen? Charles Oakley was the same way in the NBA for the duration of the ‘90s. I’m ready for a new scary NFL player. I’ll take the Ravens.

Graham: You want a new scary player? Try Jonathan Stewart as a starting RB in fantasy. That, my friend, is scary. Anyway, I’m going with Baltimore.

New York Giants (+2.5) at Dallas Cowboys

Chris: I hate how I’m supposed to care about this game. I still think the NFC East is boring. I’ll take the Cowboys. They’re trying to stick it to TO.

Graham: I was just saying last week how boring the NFC East is- thief! You’re the Mentalist to my Psych! I’m taking Dallas.

Indianapolis Colts (-3.5) at Miami Dolphins

Chris: Every year there’s one team that shocks you and wins a bunch of games thanks to a slight upgrade and a terrible schedule. That was the Dolphins last year. This year, they didn’t upgrade and they don’t have the terrible schedule. I predicted they’d be 8-8 but I’m thinking 6-10 is probably more accurate. The Colts win this by 2 TDs. Suck.

Graham: Hey, so how’s that Wildcat offense working out for you, Miami? Indy.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

NFL Week 2 Preview (Part 1)

I’m pretty embarrassed with my performance picking NFL games last week, only getting 8 out of 16 games right. But, Graham only did one better, getting 9 right, so I’m still right there. It’s good to know my bad weeks are close to Graham’s good weeks.

It’s time for the week 2 preview.

Carolina Panthers (-6.5) at Atlanta Falcons

Chris: WTF Jake Delhomme. Sure, you sucked in the playoffs last year, but it’s not like you’ve been that bad for your career. I mean, he’s tossed 115 TDs vs. 80 INT for his career. He’s no Joe Montana, but hell, he’s not Cade McNown either. He’s like a pitcher that loses control and never gets it back. He’s off the tracks and this ship won’t right. Atlanta wins. Thank God I don’t play against the Falcons D in fantasy this week.

Graham: Before the start of the season I might have considered this game a toss-up. Now I have Atlanta as my eliminator pick this week. So Jake Delhomme, I’m counting on another 4 picks from you this weekend. Thanks in advance.

Minnesota Vikings (-9.5) at Detroit Lions

Chris: I know the Lions got destroyed by Drew Brees last week, but hell, who doesn’t? If I’ve got to pick one shocking outcome this week, it’s this one. I think the Lions surprise some people and only lose by a touchdown.

Graham: Clearly, Chris didn’t watch much of the Lions game last week. I’m not prepared to take a team coming off a winless season and now starting a rookie quarterback, with a coach who may or may not be on Prozac. And just how, exactly, are the Lions stopping Adrian Peterson? He’s going for 160+ this week and 3 touchdowns. Minnesota gets the nod.

Cincinnati Bengals (+9.5) at Green Bay Packers

Chris: Did I really pick the Bengals to cover last week? I mean, I didn’t pick the Bengals to just win, rather, I picked them to win by 5 points. What crack was I smoking? I’m going with the Packers. I hope they score about 3,000 points.

Graham: I can’t handle too many more Packers games like Sunday’s vomit-inducing affair against Chicago. So I say the Packers win this one by two touchdowns.

Houston Texans (+7.5) at Tennessee Titans

Chris: I don’t see a Jeff Fisher team losing their home opener after 9 days rest coming off a loss. I think the Texans lose 20-7 and every Andre Johnson and Steve Slaton fantasy enter, “Oh crap, the Texans suck” mode.

Graham: As a Steve Slaton fantasy owner, I’m already in “Oh crap, the Texans suck” mode. Oh, and he’s my #1 back. Good times. Tennessee’s the pick.

Oakland Raiders (+3.5) at Kansas City Chiefs

Chris: Neither of these teams appeared that crappy last week. I wish people gave me compliments like that. “Hey Chris, I like that shirt. I saw a guy wearing it on “To Catch a Predator” last week. Kansas City, I guess.

Graham: There’s a good chance that not a single person in America outside of Oakland and Kansas City will watch this game. Hell, people in Oakland and Kansas City might now watch this game. Two crappy teams and few players of consequence in fantasy isn’t a recipe for a ratings bonanza. I bet the announcers who get assigned to this game take it as a wake-up call, and start rethinking their careers. Could there be a worse NFL assignment than this game? Anyway, if I have to make a pick, it’s Kansas City.

New England Patriots (-5.5) at NY Jets

Chris: Leave it up to the Bills to giftwrap a f-ing win to the Pats at the last minute. I think it takes some more time to get the Pats mojo back, unless they take cialis. This Jets team and Rex Ryan look mean. I’ll take the Jets and feel dumb on Monday when Brady throws 5 TDs.

Graham: Of course Fumble McWhatshisname was going to cough up that ball and give a win to the Patriots. Does any other team get more breaks than New England (Well, apart from their starting quarterback shredding his knee in last year’s season opener. And a key linebacker suffering a stroke.). But I’m with Chris. New England wasn’t impressive at all, at least in the 10 minutes I watched since the game started at 4 p.m. Pacific time. I’m going with the Jets too. Just shoot me.

New Orleans Saints (+1.5) at Philadelphia Eagles

Chris: I didn’t anticipate Donovan McNabb getting injured until game 4. Way to shock me Donovan. Do you think Donovan and Jeff Garcia hang out and bitch about their past with TO while eating chunky soup? I bet they do. What does Kevin Kolb do now that he’s 4th on the Eagles QB depth chart? I wish I could get paid for being 4th in line to do actual work. I’m picking the Saints.

Graham: Drew Brees vs. Jeff Garcia. Hmm…Drew Brees. Saints get the pick.

St. Louis Rams (+10.5) at Washington Redskins

Chris: The Rams looked atrocious last week at the Seahawks, and yet, they were one dumb penalty away from going into the locker room at halftime tied. Then again, I’m not dumb enough to pick the Rams until they prove otherwise. I’ll take the Redskins even though I’m unsure if a Jason Campbell offense can score 2 TDs.

Graham: I took a long, hard look at this game. I hate the Rams. They’re terrible. But you know what else is terrible? The feeling you get picking a Jason Campbell-led team to cover a double figure spread. I imagine making that pick is akin to awaiting the results of an HIV test. I just compared Jason Campbell to HIV. This is going bad fast. I hate this game. I don’t know what to do. Screw it, Jason Campbell, HIV and the Redskins it is.

Arizona Cardinals (+3.5) at Jacksonville Jaguars

Chris: Don’t West Coast teams always crap the bed when they have to play early games on the East Coast? I’m picking Jacksonville.

Graham: Another tough pick. You know what else is a tough pick- tonight at 9 p.m. when The Office and Fringe season premieres go head-to-head. I’m seriously leaning toward Fringe. With The Office…that documentary they’ve been shooting all these years- will it ever actually air? Seriously, it must be like a Ken Burns film or something. My God. Anyway, I guess I’m taking Arizona. I guess.

Chris: I have been thinking the same thing about The Office documentary film. I’m hoping that the series finale is actually the documentary footage used with a voiceover and whatnot, you know, like a real documentary.

Part 2 will be posted tomororw.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Remember when...

This is a new theme that I might or might not continue to do based upon whether I remember to do it and whether or not I'm motivated when I do remember. It's called, "Remember when."

Remember when SNL was funny.


Friday, September 11, 2009

NFL Kickoff Preview (Part 2)

Here's Part II of the RTS NFL preview. (Click here for Part I if you missed it).

Kansas City Chiefs at Baltimore Ravens (-8.5)

Chris: I can’t decide if Kansas City is one of those crappy teams or a middle of the road team. Sorta like how I can’t decide if I like Sour Cream n’ Onion Pringles or BBQ Baked Lays better. I suppose it doesn’t matter since the Baltimore Ravens are Cheetos. If you can’t translate that, fine, I’ll spell it out for you. The Cheetos by 17 points. (Random side note. I just googled “Cheetos” to make sure I spelled it right and this picture popped up. And those aren’t Cheetos, those are cheese puffs. Stupid google.)

Graham: Let me answer that one for you: they’re crappy. Baltimore’s the pick.

NY Jets at Houston Texans (-4.5)

Chris: Here’s a few more of my NFL predictions. I don’t think the Jets will be that bad. I think the team wants to win some games with a rookie QB just to stick it to Brett Favre. I also think Mark Sanchez is going to be good. I think Rex Ryan and the defense is going win them some games. Is it possible for Brett Favre to have a positive impact on two teams this year (the Packers and Jets both wanting to stick it to Favre) while he’s actually causing the team he’s on to implode. Some numbers guy needs to come up with a formula for this and we’ll call it “the Favre.” It’s when your existence hurts the people around you and helps your enemies. Let’s try it out. “Yesterday, I was out with friends having a few beers. It was going well, until I had a few jagerbombs and Favre’d the rest of the night away. I called my friend’s girlfriend a whore, started a fight with 3 MMA dudes and walked out on my tab. And, I just found out, a guy that I hated in high school ended up leaving with my date because I embarrassed her so badly.”

Graham: If the Jets were a TV show, they’d be Battlestar Galactica. Surprisingly passionate fanbase, some critical acclaim, but little mainstream recognition. And in both cases, I missed the boat and hear about how great they are, except never really get around to checking them out. What does this have to do with anything? Probably nothing, other than that I’m picking them this week.

Washington Redskins at NY Giants (-6.5)

Chris: I know I put the Giants in my “legitimate contenders” list but I’m not sold on them. They have a really good chance of going 9-7. Their QB is shaky (sorry, it’s true), their WRs aren’t so much unproven as they’ve proven they’re mediocre (follow that?) and their defense is good, but not Pittsburgh and Baltimore level dominant. So, uh, yeah, if they’re a contender, it’s simply by default because I still think the NFC is weak. The Giants win this game 17-13 in a snoozefest.

Graham: I’m glad Chris referred to this game as a snooze fest. I grew with Pat Summerall and John Madden creaming themselves over the NFC East “battles”. But you watch the games, and they generally consist of handoffs to fullbacks and screen passes. Feel the excitement! If Pat Summerall were still alive he’d disagree, but…wait, Pat Summerall is still alive? And calling games? My…God. Anyway, I don’t particularly like the Giants, but since Washington coach Jim Zorn referred to himself last year as the dumbest coach in the world (or something to that effect), I don’t particularly want to disagree. NY, I guess.

San Francisco 49ers at Arizona Cardinals (-6.5)

Chris: If your QB is Shaun Hill, I can’t rightfully pick your team. I could see every team in the NFC West going ending up 7-9, 8-8 or 9-7. That division sucks. Except for TJ Housamazalli. I expect greatness from him.

Graham: The pick is Arizona. But I want to talk for a second about Michael Crabtree. So he goes lower in the draft than expected, but holds out and demands to be paid like he was taken higher? You can do that? I wish I’d known that in my bar-going days. I’d hit on a woman out of league (read: any woman), get rejected, and walk away. But under Michael Crabtree’s line of thinking, I should just be waiting in her car to go home with her since I clearly deserve better than what I was being offered. Wait, did I just say I should stalk women? Has any analogy gone off the rails faster than that one? Let’s just move on.

St. Louis Rams at Seattle Seahawks (-7.5)

Chris: I just said the entire NFC West sucks, and yet I’m about to pick the Rams here because I don’t think they’ll suck as bad as you expect. Injuries killed both of these teams last year. I just don’t see it happening to them two years in a row. I think this game ends up 31-24, Seahawks, which means the Rams cover.

Graham: If you had said St. Louis would score 31 points in the season, I’d be willing to listen. But not in a game. No way. I hate Seattle, but I hate St. Louis more. Seattle’s the pick.

Chicago Bears at Green Bay Packers (-3.5)

Chris: Here’s hoping my Favre equation proves correct. If so, the Packers come out of the gate strong against a division foe. The Packers by a TD. BTW, the over/under on Cutler yelling at his receivers is 3.5 passes. I’m taking the under.

Graham: I’m a Packers fan, so yeah, I’m taking Green Bay. After their dominating preseason, I’m about ready to call my second child “Aaron”. If we ever do have another child (God forbid), then “Aaron” moves ahead of other possible names, including “Ichiro”, “Pavel” and “Weird Al”.

Buffalo Bills at New England Patriots (-10.5)

Chris: Brady’s first game back reminds me of Marino’s return from his torn Achilles when he tossed for 5 TDs and 400+ yards in a win over the Pats. See the symmetry here? I’m picking Brady to throw for about 600 years and 7 TDs, you know, unless he goes out in the first 10 minutes of the season again, which would be sweet. Normally I don’t cheer for the Pats, but this will be game 1 of the “TO is just a sideshow cancer with no football skills left whatsoever” era. So that’s nice.

Graham: Basic rule of thumb: when a team fires their offensive coordinator a week before the season starts, probably not a good idea to pick them to overcome a double digit point spread on the road against a team that could win the Super Bowl. Just sayin’.

San Diego Chargers (-6.5) at Oakland Raiders

Chris: I bet the Chargers defense and Shawne Merriman suffocate the Raiders. Too soon? I don’t pick the Raiders until further notice.

Graham: I don’t know if an athlete has ever won a PR battle by holding out. That will end with Richard Seymour. When Bill Belichick told him he’d been traded to Oakland, I’m sure he started sobbing uncontrollably with Belichick repeating, “It’s not your fault Richard, it’s not your fault, it’s not your fault, it’s not your fault.” San Diego.