I Ain’t Paying For That

From the blog that has produced such classic hits as The Vibe and Speaking Of, comes the latest look inside the sick mind of its content wizard. Apologies in advance, and please, if you find this piece to be objectionable or ill suited to anyone with common sense, feel free to register your complaints here.

This article of my constitution has to do with big league sports and why I refuse to pay in. I haven’t been to a Yankees game in years while my consumption of the other three sports has rendered me anorexic. To paraphrase Dickens, I don’t have anything against big league sports and I have everything against big league sports.


NFL commissioner Roger Goodell signs contract extension

Roger Goodell- He’s the NFL’s rain maker. By 2027, the league will be raking in approximately 25 billion pigskins annually; only two years late on Goodell’s projection all the way back in 2010. That’s some primo caviar cake if you’re an owner, but just another bill if you’re on the other side of the ticket window.

Europe has become a thing, with several games a year played on the other side of the pond. Which is great news if you live in Frankfurt or Great Britain, but not so great news if you’re a season ticket holder stateside and they’re stealing one of your Sundays.

The Commish once proclaimed PSL’s as “good investments. These personal seat licenses are annual fees you pay in order to own a seat. and can range from $500 to $100,000. For a seat. Your safety isn’t guaranteed and neither is the starting time if the league decides to flex your 1 o’clock game to prime time for the cash. If you live in a cold weather city, sucks to be you!

I ain’t paying for that.

Kyrie Irving Covers Nike Shoe Logo W/ 'I Am Free' Sticker After Split From Brand

Kyrie Irving- The dude ain’t evil, but he is a schmuck on wheels. The media culls for content and Kyrie is trough-ready, with clueless and sometimes hurtful commentary that shows how insular his privileged world truly is; he’s a poster man-child for the baller brats who wish to maximize their bank accounts sans the sweat.

Irving might’ve been an all-timer if he had put in as much work in the gym as he does out of it but the narrative of his career will speak to all the talent he left on his cutting room floor. He might play lights out for the rest of the season and lead the Mavericks on a deep playoff run. Or he might decide to take a vacation to clear his head. You never know with Kyrie.

I ain’t paying for that.

Behind That Bonkers Golden Knights Pregame Show: 'We Threw Everything On The Wall' : The Two-Way : NPR

The Coolest Game On Earth Lost Its Mind- The NHL is as close as I’ll come to extending an olive branch to watching a live performance. It’s the most exciting of the four major sports in real time and you mostly get what you pay for. But the very fact that a team such as the Las Vegas Golden Knights can live and breathe in their league really turns me off. If you’ve not seen their pre-game show, don’t. It would make Wayne Newton cringe.

I ain’t paying for that.

This used to be my playground- I’ll still take in a baseball game so long as it’s minor league or independent in nature. But the MLB will remain in my rearview until doubleheaders, day World Series games and bunting become a thing again. In other words, nah.

The game can still captivate me, but these days it’s in small doses. For every Ohtani. there’s a Tatis, whose boundless talents get snagged in a perpetual cycle of bad decisions. For every Steve Cohen who- love it or loathe it- will do anything to make the Mets a winner, you have Reds owner Phil Castellini, who has threatened to move the team out of the town they’ve called home for more than one hundred and fifty years. For every team like the Rays, who milk every last penny out of their roster in order to field a winner, you have the Marlins, who didn’t get that memo.

And now we’re getting change for our dollar’s worth. But all the artificial sweeteners the league has added to a sport that is damn near unrecognizable won’t cure their ills. We’ll get pitch clocks when making the batter stay in the box and the pitcher stay on the mound works better. And oh yeah, fewer commercials (Peter Ueberroth forbid!) would shave palenty off the average game.

If you’re waiting for baseball to return to its roots, take a seat because it’s going to be a while. For that to happen, the sport would have to buy into the fundamentals. They would have to choose substance over swagger. They would have to stop emulating the faster, meaner sports and get back to churching with Kinsella and Kahn and Angell. It would be an abrupt departure from the coordinates they are currently following. And they would have to admit their glory days are entirely in the rearview. Unless or until they get down with some common sense?

I ain’t paying for that.

The Funny Thing About Death

I never understood why people fear mortality.

What’s the point in being afraid of the inevitable? I mean, if you’re going to be afraid of bad company you can’t reschedule, be afraid of in-laws and the IRS. Leave the grim reaper out of it. He’s just doing his job, and business is good when you consider that mortality rates were up last year.

This thought occurred to me- death- whilst enjoying my every other day half hour run. Thirty minutes, three miles and change, the perfect Zen. Now, thinking about death is way different than being afraid to die. Thinking about death is something I do every day, several times a day. It usually pays a visit inside my lighter moments.

Of course, death isn’t all fun and games. There are certain methods of cosmic transportation that do not butter my bread. so a list of ways in which death would truly suck? Yeah, I just so happen to have such a list.

Ventilators- Nope.

Shark Attack- Sharks are majestic, but so is the St. Patrick’s Cathedral and I wouldn’t want to be impaled by one of its spires.

Plane Crash- Every time a plane crash happens, some aviation expert will let us know it’s far more likely we’ll die after slipping in the bathtub than die in a plane crash. Yeah but last time I looked, my bathtub wasn’t forty thousand feet above the ground.

Dying in the audience during “Live with Kelly Ripa and _____”- I would sooner hurtle to earth in a plane while hooked up to a ventilator, after which I survive the impact only to be devoured by sharks.

When my half hour run was in the books I decided to treat myself, which isn’t a regular occurrence for yours truly. The problem with this brilliant fucking idea is that I quit most of the stuff I used to treat myself to. Like painkillers, day drinking and smokes.

Meanwhile, mi mama is on the road to recovery after having tangoed with mortality a couple months ago. She lived to tell the tale, even if the telling is sometimes in the form of bitching and moaning about her physical therapy. So it was that I summoned a little Mickey Goldmill on the drive to her latest session and once she aced that shit? I treated her (us) to McDonalds.

McDonalds is truly every once in a while for me and it won’t be a regular occurrence for the old gal either, but in the moment it was a pretty brilliant fucking idea. Which got me thinking happier thoughts. And that’s when my list of ways to die that don’t suck quite so much came to me.

Because of course I have one . . .

Skydiving- The only problem is my intense fear of heights. In order for me to die while skydiving, I would have to be drugged and then thrown off a plane. But I’m willing to try it so long as the drugs are really, really good.

Competitive Eating Contest- It would serve me right to get strangled by a five-pound bacon cheeseburger with all the fixings. I’ve wasted enough time watching these marathon masticators do their thing while making light of it that I probably deserve such a fate, as long as caramelized onions are an accessory.

As breakfast for a Bengal tiger- I only romanticize such a thing because of Yann Martel, but it still counts. And besides, I would lose consciousness within thirty-seconds, tops. Sure it would be the longest thirty seconds of my life, but it sure as hell beats thirty minutes of Ripa.

An explosion in a distillery- I get to take it with me!

Being impaled by a spire from St. Patrick’s Cathedral- Alright, I thought about it some and yanno . . it would be a pretty cool way to buy the boat.

Yann Martel once wrote that death fell in love with the beauty of life, and that’s why it stalks it. And I think that if I’m willing to allow a Bengal tiger to macchiato my ass into the ever after, there’s gotta be some truth to that idea.

I betcha Ryan Seacrest would agree.





The Sorryless Interview: Tom Brady

If I was expecting Tom Brady’s crib to be the Floridian version of the Palace of Versailles I’m losing big time. Because when I arrive at my destination, I’m parked in front of an art-deco walkup in Little Havana that is bookended by a liquor store on the one side and a pawn shop on the other. I text Brady to make sure I got the address right and he lets me know he’s watching me. I’m sufficiently creeped out now but decide to venture inside anyway because what’s the worst that could happen?

Okay, there’s a laundry list of worst case scenarios running through my brain. Serial killer Tom Brady is at the top of the list because let’s face it, he fits the profile. White, comes from a good family . . . obsessive to the point of psychotic . . creepy . . .

Hermano! Levnantar la vista! 

Hell nope, don’t go Rosetta Stoning my ass Tom! You want to practice your irretrievably broken Spanish on someone, dial up one of your ESPN groupies. They’ll dig that shit up, but I didn’t bring my Irish Harlem dictionary with me so let’s keep it civil . . .coo?

I move up to the third floor and join the greatest quarterback of a generation on a patio that is only slightly larger than a hamster cage. He hands me a virgin Daiquiri and we clink our plastic cups together as I begin compiling excuses for why I have to cut the interview short.

Please tell me this isn’t your new crib.

Nah, I’m adding a wing to my place so I decided to Airbnb this little gem in the meantime. I was inspired by Rocky III . . . hell of a movie. 

Yeah that’s amazing. Hey, can we move this inside since I don’t like hanging out in phone booths that sit three stories above the ground?

No problemo

I take a seat on a frayed wicker chair that is no doubt a relic of the Bautista regime while Tom plops down on a bean bag chair. Nothing about this scene is natural, but hey . . . I asked for it.

Is this the end? Really? Truly? Cross your heart and hope to shit your pants at a White Party . . the end?

(Laughing) Yes, really most likely and truly the best that I can foresee and absolutely, positively maybe! 

That’s not how this works. The double talk was all well and good when the hot mics just wanted to breathe your air. But if this is “for good” as you claimed, then you need to bring some real shit to the table.

I told you, there’s like a less than fifty/fifty chance I would come back. 

Wait, what? Fifty/fifty is my convenience store sushi. If you’re going to tell me it’s a coin flip chance you’re playing in the fall, Imma tell you the Miami Dolphins are the team to call up. They specialize in retirement packages for over the hill quarterbacks.

Are you telling me I’m washed up? 

If you’re a serial killer in your spare time, no. But if you’re just a great quarterback with no life, absolutely.


Don’t get me wrong, you’re a freak of nature to have played the game at the age of 45. But in today’s NFL, Joe Namath could throw for 4,000 yards easy. And he’s 79 years old. 

Point taken

Is Bill Belichick as much of a dick as he makes himself out to be?

Bill is someone I respect immensely, and so much of what I am . . not simply as a player but as a human being, is thanks to him

Remember Tommy, you don’t get to end around the question now . .

Yeah, he’s a dick. Great coach . . but total dick

I happen to think you guys could’ve won another Super Bowl if you had stayed in New England. But the fact you went to a franchise that, more often than not couldn’t get out of its own way and won it in your first year there . . I hate to admit it but I find that more impressive than if you had done it in New England. How about you?

Listen, winning is hard no matter where you’re playing. I read somewhere that winning a Super Bowl is harder than performing brain surgery while operating a commercial airliner . .

I’m pretty sure that’s not true.

Maybe I saw that on Tucker Carlson’s show

So if you had been able to choose the locale, where would you have spent your career?

I would have played in a parking lot . . as long as it was seventy five degrees and sunny

Joe Montana called you “the guy in Tampa” and it’s pretty clear he ain’t down with this idea that you’re the GOAT. Any thoughts as to why an all-timer would throw shade on you? 

I’m not sure why Joe would have a problem with me and I really don’t think he does. The media tends to blow these things up. 

You mean the way they umm . . . blew up all those balls you deflated?

(Tom points his finger in Clintonian defiance) I did not exhale

Favorite teammate of all time. And Gronk doesn’t count.


Sorry pal but that ship done sailed. There’s a less than one percent chance that she’s reading this and that one percent just skipped town with a dude half her age. So let’s keep it to football, por favor.

Probably Edelman but I have to say, Fonda was a lot of fun too

Okay, last question. Does Mahomes have a chance to catch your ring count if he wins today?

Well if he does, I’m coming back






The Vibe

I came up with a new way of shaking the sugar and pardon moi for not giving you the heads up on this science experiment. But sometimes? You just have to plate the dish and hope for the best, or at least a reasonable facsimile.

This theatrical performance deals with vibes. Hence the title of this post, which is brought to you by WordPress (they told me not to include an exclamation point or I would have to pay for their primo service). The Vibe is all about how topics culled off the news cycle are rhythming to my sick brain. I introduce a participant or several and then I play matchmaker with a song that comes to mind. I would ask you to enjoy but that might be a tad bit presumptuous.

George Santos to Marjorie Taylor Greene to Joe Biden. These people just so happen to be the icing on our political toilet cake these days, with nary a Tinkers or Evers or Chance in hell of redeemable allowance for the sucker shock we’re footing the bill on. Santos lies more than a call girl on commission. Greene kills the spirit of Einstein every time she opens her pancake hole. And Joe? Please, for the love of God, don’t let the man improvise. People in charge of his speeches are making bank, and for what?

I love the Association but that love is thinning faster than my hairline. The league has become a bad moon rising, full of entitled ball brats who want their money for nothing and their Chucks for free. For every LeBron James, you have a Kyrie Irving, who blames the whole world for the drama he creates. For every Jimmy Butler, you have a Ben Simmons, who gold chains his way to generational wealth whilst riding the pine to his next party. I just cannot bring myself to watch these days because I feel like Ed Tom Bell in No Country for Old Men, pondering the way things used to be whilst knowing they ain’t ever going back to square. Which is why I’m thankful for the musical talents of one Kevin Durant when I grab some highlights. Sure he’s surly and finicky and altogether petty at times. But hey, so am I. Alls I know is the man is seven feet tall with a howitzer of a right arm that hums and a wingspan Carl Sagan would’ve written poems on. And so it’s KD’s talents that have me matching up a tune to pair with it.

China has balls. I mean balloons. Okay, I mean both. They were plenty pissed over the fact that we jacked their spy balloon out of the sky, even if we had every right to do just that. Now you would think a regime that fucked over the world might actually show some grace and humility but n’kay . . .

The machines keep coming at us and we keep letting it happen. I wrote about this not too long ago in Ill Machina and the evidence keeps slapping me upside the head. So I will ride out this maiden voyage with a musical spill I learned about through Tony Kornheiser, who finds the hidden gems and plants them in our playlists. He feels that thing the same way I do.

It’s the vibe.


The Sorryless 81st Annual Super Bowl Preview!

Vintage Photos of the NFL That Show How Football Has Changed

Apologies to Jim Nantz, but our Super Bowl preview is the tradition unlike any other. And thank God for that.

Before I get to the good stuff, Imma give you a heads up on a HUGE get for my interview collection. Next Sunday I will be sitting down with Tom Brady to talk about life, love, football and his addiction to retirements. And you don’t have to subscribe to another streaming service to get it, so there’s that.

The week leading up to the big game turns into a big, fat news hoagie . . .

Aaron Rodgers announces that he will marry himself. “My soulmate was right here all along,” he says. Podcast pal Pat Macafee will preside over the ceremony, after which the former Packers QB will report to his new club- the New York Jets. Subscriptions to the New York Post soar as their back page headlines welcome him to town with “Hiya, Huasca!”.

The quarterback carousel gets kicking: Carson Wentz joins Grey’s Anatomy, Ryan Tannehill joins a tribute band and Jimmy Garoppolo joins Porn Hub.

In his weekly press conference, Cowboys owner Jerry Jones claims he’s not impressed with the rival Eagles second trip to the big game in five seasons. “Super Bowls are all well and good, but I get to enjoy the perks of being boss and they’re every bit as satisfying. Like . . when I go to the mall, I can park anywhere, no charge. When I go to the movies they let me pick my seat. And when I go to Cracker Barrel, free refills,”.

The league announces there will be a four team European division beginning in 2025. UK’s team will be the London Fog. Madrid will introduce the Spanish Flies. The Frankfurters will play in Germany and Denmark gets Something Rotten.

Urban Meyer confesses he wants to give the NFL another try, after which all thirty-two teams change their contact information.

Tom Brady’s second retirement is proving to be even better than his first. “I joined a D&D Club, ate a whole mango and learned my kids names.” He also cancels his trip to New England where he was expected to sign a one day contract with the Patriots so he could retire as a member of his original team. Miami Dolphins owner Stephen Ross steps in and signs Brady to a two day contract and pays him $50 million guaranteed if he promises to friend the Dolphins on Facebook.

As for the main event . . .

It’s learned that George Santos had offered to sing the National Anthem. He claims to have graduated from Julliard and says he could have had a successful career in music if he hadn’t decided to become an astronaut. He boasts that he is an EMT in his spare time and could have assisted in the event of a medical emergency. “In high school I gave the star quarterback mouth to mouth. In fact, I gave the whole team mouth to mouth. Under the bleachers, after the game.” The NFL ignores the request.

Play by play announcer Kevin Burkhardt is denied entry into State Farm Stadium despite showing his credentials. No one on the Fox Sports team is able to verify his identity, leaving the network without a lead announcer. Rob Lowe’s hair steps into the role.

The Chiefs win the coin flip, after which Eagles head coach Nick Sirianni throws the challenge flag because the officials used a Missouri quarter. Fox Sports lead analyst Greg Olsen agrees, “The Missouri quarter is notoriously inclined to a north/south verticality so when the ref high pointed the coin its spin was partial, thereby deferring to the Chiefs ever so slightly,”

The Eagles jump out to a 21-0 lead as Mahomes throws two pick-sixes, prompting Fox Sports’ Colin Cowherd to proclaim the Chiefs quarterback as “the biggest bust since that Cats movie!”. Kansas City mounts a furious comeback, propelled by four Mahomes touchdown passes to take a 28-24 lead at the half, prompting Cowherd to proclaim that Mahomes is “the most dominant football player since Tecmo Bowl Bo Jackson!”.

For the halftime show, Rihanna performs a live concert from the moon. Since time moves more slowly in space, the forty-five minute performance equals one day on earth, so the game picks up on Monday Night. While the music is universally panned, it does produce one highlight as Matt Kowalski, George Clooney’s character in the movie Gravity, is found alive.

In the third quarter, Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts scores on a 125 yard run before it’s called back on account of the fact the field is only 120 yards long. On the very next play Hurts scores on a ninety-nine and a half yard run, which is also called back on account of a holding penalty. Two plays later, Hurts scores on an eighty-one yard run with no flags on the play. Greg Olsen credits Hurts’ tenacity, “In that situation, you’re looking to gain positive yards in space while genuflecting just enough in order to produce missed tackles and reduce the risk of mid-air collisions and Hurts is a master at it!”. Congress alleges that Olsen is attempting to steal their identity.

To open the fourth quarter, Chiefs head coach Andy Reid calls for a  “Smothered Hash Browns” flea flicker in which Mahomes tosses the ball back to himself, catches it, and then flings it the length of the field to himself for the touchdown. After the play, Mahomes announces he will donate his left ankle to science while coach Reid admits he wasn’t calling a play at all. “I was ordering from the Waffle House menu so it was a win/win!”

The game is tied at fifty-one with four seconds to play and the Chiefs pinned inside their own two-yard line, prompting Greg Olsen to say “Kansas City has time for at least three plays and another Waffle House order with Mahomes under center,”. Sure enough, Kansas City’s gridiron god uses all of two and a half seconds to get the Chiefs within field goal range at the Philadelphia thirty yard line. There’s only one problem; the team is down a kicker when Harrison Butker gets poked in the eye by a penalty flag. Kansas City signs Rob Gronkowski to attempt a 47 yard field goal, which he nails. The game winning kick is negated by a penalty, backing the Chiefs up five yards after which Gronk hits a 52 yard field goal, which is also negated by a penalty flag. A third field goal attempt is blocked by a Chinese spy balloon after which Andy Reid lets Mahomes throw a Hail Mary. The Chiefs have twelve men on the field- thirteen if you count the Uber Eats guy- but the refs don’t throw a flag since they ran out of them. Mahomes’ sixty yard toss into the end zone bounces off Travis Kelce’s helmet and right into Mahomes’ arms for the game winning score. Mahomes takes home the Super Bowl MVP trophy and becomes a featured item on the Applebee’s menu- The Mahome-burger: An Angus beef patty, hot mustard and GOAT cheese.

The Chiefs disputed win leaves Philadelphia devastated. Long time Eagles fan Will Smith calls the loss “a slap in the face,” while Jalen Hurts requests a trade back to Alabama. As for Kansas City, the Chiefs receive the blessings of former capo Robert Kraft and the team is the overwhelming favorite to win next year’s Super Bowl and sweep the Oscars.


It Takes All Of Us

I’m old enough to remember when “Why?” was a talking point.

It was the question that followed some truly horrible shit like a mass shooting or a body cam footage release. A news anchor would begin with that unanswerable question when introducing a guest or as a way to segue to a live remote. A celebrity talking head would use up an hour on the question in the name of ratings. The medium dictated the narrative because it was some dramatic shit to be laying down.

And you know what? We’ve done it all wrong.

We got fed this public service announcement ad infinitum and we ate up the empty calories. It was bupkis on a stick. The broadcasting of all that really bad shit did nothing to stem the tide. All it did was fetch corner offices for the on-air talent.

Let’s go back to 1999 and the Columbine shooting. We got wall to wall coverage on a sum of all fears scenario; disenfranchised kids laying siege on a student body. Kids killing kids. Anchors and talking heads asked Why and journalists wrote about how our culture was in need of change and okay . . . how we doing with that?

A little less than a quarter century later, we still have kids killing kids. Maybe they flunked standardized testing or got dumped right before prom or ditched the meds and failed in that sobriety. Whatever the reason, it’s solved with violence now. That’s because too many kids have come to see themselves as fringe participants in a world gone sideways. And they’re plenty angry about it. Having been raised on TV and its many cousins, they have come to understand that there is no such thing as bad publicity. So then, it’s not a matter of asking why they carry out these horrific acts when we should be looking at what compels them to choose such a thing in the first place.


Let’s face it, we ain’t the most sterling examples of self-restraint. In fact, us grown ups have made a real mess of things. We drank from the well of the same medium we raised our kids on, ignoring the fact it was getting us nowhere at the speed of light. And no, scapegoating the media ain’t getting us anywhere; they didn’t set the fires, they simply reported on them. But all those horrible days that had us glued to our sets amounted to precious little educational value. Unless anger counts for something, because we have plenty of that and it’s more infectious than whatever the latest virus happens to be.

In the age of safe spaces, we ain’t got one. We live in a world where brawls at little league games and gunfights at kid’s birthday parties don’t even make us flinch. We have become the narrators, acquiescing to the storm that threatens to sweep us under while cashing in on the viral acrimony with our devices and our social media platforms.

And when our cache runs dry, then we’ll blame the media . . we’ll blame the other party . . we’ll blame teachers and bankers and lawyers and Jews and Blacks and Asians and Muslims and anything and anyone else. And the only change that will come of doing so is that bad will get worse.

Last month it was LA and Memphis; but they are just the latest ground zero moments. They sure as hell won’t be the last. Because there is always going to be another routine traffic stop that turns tragic. There is always going to be another kid or grown up looking to settle their differences with a gun. Violence is how we solve our problems; from Memphis to LA to every other place in the world that’s just waiting to get in trouble, somehow and someway and sometime soon. And maybe we’ll get it through our thick heads that the time to ask why is long gone.

We have to start asking what the hell we’re going to do about it.





Still Frank: February 2023

Although this post is a day off, Imma asked me to take a break from Beach Walk Reflections and pitch in with some random thoughts about the ongoing month and the new one. Thanks to Marc for the space.

January was a frightening football event that occurred in my city followed by a remarkable recovery, a disruptive majority in the US House, Brazilians crashing their capitol about an election, a battering ram of storms hitting California, Harry & Meghan, crowning a national college football champion, big tech layoffs, classified documents, Memphis police, Australian Open tennis champions, determining Super Bowl participants, and politicians saying stupid shit.

January deaths included the youngest kid in Eight is Enough, a famed rock guitarist, a 90s supermodel, a Heisman winner, a legendary football official, The King’s daughter, a daredevil who was a son of a daredevil, La Lolla, one of CSNY, the world’s oldest known person, a renowned basketball commentator, a hockey legend, Laverne best friend (Shirley), and people dying from gun violence, natural disasters, and war.

In case you missed it, here are a few January headline gems from The Onion

  • Man who stopped dieting already seeing results
  • Microbes growing in airpods really getting into Radiohead
  • Wistful woman doesn’t want kids but still wants to name people
  • Hospital tells public it can schedule CPR in 6 weeks
  • Parents feel safer letting their kids drink and drive under their own roof
  • Cautious climber cuts off arm to prevent it from getting pinned under fallen boulder

Try the Combo Challenge. By using only the words in the above headlines, create your headline, then share it in your comment. My combo appears later in this post.

As one who regularly checks my WP Spam folder, I wonder about AlanWraky, AnnaWraky, BooWraky, CarlWraky, DenWraky, EvaWraky, EyeWraky, JackWraky, JaneWraky, JasonWraky, JimWraky, JoeWraky, JonWraky, KiaWraky, KimWraky, LisaWraky, MarkWraky, MaryWraky, MiaWraky, NickWraky, PaulWraky, SamWraky, SueWraky, TedWraky, TeoWraky, UgoWrakly, WimWraky, and ZakWraky. Are they related? If so, that’s one high participation rate in a family business!

For those remembering my mail saga in October, I received this message from USPS this past Monday. The US Postal Service® received the search request you submitted and it’s being processed. Your package has not yet been recovered, but every effort is being made to locate your item(s). We apologize for any inconvenience and thank you for your patience.

Did you know: The Periodic Table contains 118 elements? Take a Periodic Table quiz here.

FYI: Did you hear about the woman riding around the world with her German shepherd?

Congratulations to the last inductees to the Songwriters Hall of Fame, so I toast the first Hispanic female inductee.

Because today starts a new month, it’s time for an overview of some of the celebrations February has to offer. For a complete list of February celebrations, click here.

Monthly celebrations for February include adopting a rescued rabbit, barley, fasting, Florida strawberries, library lovers, bird feeding, Black history, cherries, goat yoga, snack foods, sweet potatoes, and spunky old broads.

February is also a month to increase your awareness about the heart, Marfan’s Syndrome, low vision, and spay & neuter.

Weekly toasts in February include snow sculpting (1-5), love makes the world go round but laughter keeps us from getting dizzy (8-14), random acts of kindness (12-18), flirting (12-18), and saunas (19-25).

Day celebrations in February include bubble gum (3rd), Nutella & shower with a friend (5th), Canadian maple syrup (6th), Periodic Table (7th), pizza (9th), pork rinds (12th), popcorn (13th), my birthday (17th), drink wine (18th), Fat Tuesday (21st), curling (23rd), dance (24th), and cupcakes (27th). Unfortunately, this year you can’t celebrate Superman’s birthday on his birthday. For a complete list of January celebrations, click here.

February Moons: Full (5th), New (20th)

My Combo: Wistful woman cuts off arm of cautious man who stopped dieting to schedule Radiohead in hospital

To take you into February, enjoy this classic remake by Buddy Guy, fittingly featuring Jeff Beck. I’m out of here. Happy Crepe Day!

The Vera Farmiga Invitational

Download Vera Farmiga Awards Night Wallpaper | Wallpapers.com

Vera Farmiga called me the other night to let me know she wasn’t pleased with how long it’s been since I put together a Hawt List. I had no idea she still read the lists after I pulled that Sarah Michelle Gellar stunt but she claims that wasn’t no thing. The lists? Those are a thing. I’m thankful for her spankful, and as a result I’ve collected a half dozen dames to help y’all with those outrageous heating bills. So turn down the thermostat and turn up the flavor because we are booking passage for Isle of Hubba.

The heat is free of charge on this trip.

See the Stunning Designer Suits Blake Lively Wears in 'A Simple Favor' | Entertainment Tonight

That whole girl next door thing went out of style with bubble jackets and legwarmers, but there’s a lively debate going on to bring the term back. As in Blake Lively, the blessed beauty who fought off a hungry shark with a surfboard (fictionally), married Ryan Reynolds (seriously) and wins the room every time she walks through that door . . . truly.

All that, and the hat. It’s just not fair.

Logan Browning - Monarch Magazine

The state of Georgia was winning big long before the Bulldogs started full housing the college football ranks. And that’s because Logan Browning was born and raised in the land of peaches and honey. These days she is taking up residence in the hearts and minds of most anyone with a pulse. Maybe it’s the sultry stare . . . or the sophisticated saunter . . but for my money Imma go with the eyes. Yeah, those eyes have it. All of it.

Narcos México, Mayra Hermosillo: quién es la actriz que hace de Enedina Arellano Félix | Fotos de Instagram | Temporada 3 | Series de Netflix | FAMA | MAG.

Mayra Hermosillo’s got the Mexicana school teacher vibe going strong, and as Enedina Arellano Félix in Narcos Mexico, the gal knows how to cook the books. Hell, she knows how to cook anything she damn well pleases. Her nouns are suave, her verbs possess a cunning appeal and her conjugation is an after hours endeavor you will solemnly swear to. Long live the bad girl.

Kate Siegel - IMDb

Speaking of the bad girl, Kate Siegel teaches a master class whenever she takes a role that leans hard into the dark side. When her eyes go all haughty, get ready for some naughty. This isn’t to give short shrift to her turns as the good girl, because she can find the net just fine no matter. It’s that silky smooth purr coupled with those prying eyes. Good? Bad? How about both?

Doja Cat stuns at Grammys red carpet in dreamy Versace gown - CNN Style

Doja Cat.

Okay, what? You need more than that lovely gaze and that funky alias to make you feel better? N’kay . . . This LA girl lit YouTube on fire with her 2018 smash hit “Mooo”, but really, that was just a result of all her dues getting paid up because she had been on the scene for more than a decade by then. She is the Queen of “Hell Yeah!”, so make sure to bow down fellas.

Jennifer Coffey on Instagram: “Ok y'all this post is sure to get the convo going!! I'll be presenting our @nfl #tsv 6-8… | Jennifer coffey, Jennifer, Gorgeous girls

QVC is quite adept at two things: Talking you out of your hard earned cash by peddling shit you don’t need. And babes. Of course, it’s their impressive ensemble of hostesses that makes the first part so much easier to pull off. And while I don’t know my QVC’s, I know Jennifer Coffey just fine. And so what if she has regrettable taste when it comes to her favorite football team. All that really matters is how she’s making (almost) fifty the new Dayummmmmm!

Welp, it looks like that is going to wrap up our the first Invitational of the new year. And I promise not to wait so long for the next walk down the Sorryless runway. Because I really don’t care that the phone call from Vera happened to be a dream I had the other night.

It still counts.

Joe and Marco At The Movies!

Skinamarink': Shudder Acquires Horror Movie, Will Head to Theaters - Variety

I’d like to welcome you to our first movie review of 2023. I was able to get Joe Pesci to take some time away from his very busy schedule . . which includes tee times in Scottsdale and blowing his denture dough on the ponies . . .

Fuck you very much, Marco. For one thing, I ain’t gambled on the ponies in a month. And when I do, I win! For anotha, I only use golf clubs when negotiations hit a snag . . .

Wow, you’ve upgraded from aluminum bats! That’s some high brow shit you’re dealing up in the ‘boardroom’.

And if you got a problem with it, I can introduce you to my hybrid driver, ya stuttering prick.

No thanks Joe. Golf ain’t my bag, pun intended. But movies are, and we have a rather unusual entry this week. Skinamarink is the directorial debut for Canadian filmmaker Kyle Edward Ball. It was made on a skinny jeans budget of $15,000, most of which was raised through crowdfunding. And while I loved it? Joe . . . not so much.

Don’t forget to mention we got some spoilers Marco. I know how sensitive you get about that shit.

My little guy is growing up!

And what’s this crowdfunding about?

It’s like a grass roots online fundraiser where people donate whatever they feel like.

I know a guy who woulda leant him da money without all that aggravation. 

Yeah I’m pretty sure Ball didn’t want to be taking out a loan in which he was repaying the debt with certain of his body parts.

Whateva . . .

Enough of that, let’s get to what’s cooking. Joe, I cannot say enough good things about this movie, which pits me on the movie geek side of the ledger. It’s a polarizing film that people either loved or loathed. I happened to love it for its bare boned heft. It takes the mainstream paranormal movie and places it in a masterful reduction sauce the likes of which I do not believe I have ever experienced.

Well, if that means dis Ball guy robbed anyone who wasted their time with dis piece of shit of a movie, then I agree wholeheartedly. If a hundred closeup shots of Legos and an endless reel of cartoons that are older than me is your bag, then you probably don’t need to be sitting in the dark in the first place. You need stronger meds.

God forbid a filmmaker challenges you to put in some work! The nightmare scenario is something Ball honed for years on his YouTube channel, and he marries it to all those many things we still fear . . like the dark and strange noises and being completely helpless. And umm, what part of ‘experimental’ did you not understand?

Excuse me asshole, but I experimented plenty when I was younger. And it was WAY more enjoyable than this vomit on a stick.

That’s the whole enchilada man! Ball turns the paranormal genre on its head, both figuratively and literally. There’s no reliance on CGI or sound effects or big name talent. His story’s complexity is found in the simple things and that’s why it works. You have to be patient with this one, so I can see where the meaning escaped you.

Lemme tell you something pal, I am being plenty patient right now seeing as how your nose is still attached to your face.

May I remind you this humble little venture just surpassed $1 million at the box office, and it drops on the horror channel Shudder in February. That tells me lots of people are seeing it my way.

Oh yeah? Well that tells me there are a lot of mental patients walking around.

I give it four out of five stars with my only critique being the running time. Ball could’ve cut it down some, but really, I’m just nitpicking.

I give it a five . .

Wow Joe, you were pulling one over on me this entire time?!

No. I give it a five, as in you better have five drinks in you before you watch this crap. And you bettah keep right on drinking when it starts because if you’re lucky you’ll pass out and forget it ever happened. 

Well shit, Joe. Okay, next week we’ll review Poison Rose, starring John Travolta and Morgan Freeman. Spoiler alert, it’s simply bad acting. You can handle that, can’t you?

I’ll start drinking now, just in case.

The Rundown

Welcome to the first Rundown of the year, which is made possible by the generous donations on the part of Wolf Blitzer, Jim Belushi and Carrot Top. And while I don’t have a Trump conviction to chew the fat on in this week’s episode, I do supply some thoughts on why we should stop talking about an ending to this farce until we actually have one. Plus! Are classified documents the new Facebook posts? . . . The human brain wins a round against AI . . and Curious George Santos past shows no signs of slowing down.

Let’s hit the ground running . . .

Defending national champion Georgia pounds TCU in college football title game - The San Diego Union-Tribune

We start with the top college football team in the land. The Georgia Bulldogs and coach Kirby Smart became the first team to repeat as champs since the Nick Saban led Alabama Crimson Tide a decade earlier. The Dawgs lost 15 players to the NFL last offseason (which is a dozen more than some actual NFL teams currently possess), and they didn’t miss a beat. They’re my choice to win it all again next season because the idea that a team not named the Tide three-peats is . . . wait for it . . peachy with me.

  • Aaron Rodgers makes an awful lot of noise for a guy who hasn’t played in a Super Bowl since the Obama administration. Hey man, just saying . . .
  • Lebron James is done winning titles. There, I said it.
  • Twenty-five days until pitchers and catchers.

Garage Storage Tips: 10 Things You Shouldn't Keep In Your Garage | The Lakeside Collection

Anything you can do, I can do dumber. Well, in Joe Biden’s case maybe not dumber since that would be damn near impossible. And sorry Gym Jordan, but as the Washington Post correctly pointed out, this isn’t a case of “Whatabout?”. But Joe’s classified docs turning up in his garage ain’t great optics. And it’s even worse news for those of us who wanted to be done with the other guy. Because the MAGA minions are going to use this fuel to fire up their fledgling run.

  • Speaking of the Mar of Lago, can the news outlets chill some with their Cannonball run coverage until the Federalis actually (hopefully) pull that lasso? As he showed us time and again, there’s no such thing as bad publicity.
  • Now George Santos was a drag queen in Brazil too? Tell you what, if this cat told me I had a day to live, Imma buy me some green bananas. And a puppy.

And now for the We’re All Doomed! Photo of the Week! 

Displaying IMG_1339.jpg

I cut back on my egg intake last fall and really, not a minute too soon.

Exclusive: Who is Edward Tian? He wants to keep his GPTZero app free for users to take on ChatGPT | South China Morning Post

Princeton senior Edward Tion is dishing up the kind of smarts we need to be paying more attention to. He’s majoring in Computer Science with a minor in journalism, but his current passion is all about harnessing the increasingly powerful influence of artificial intelligence.

Like most college kids, Tion has used ChatGPT, which is basically an advanced chat bot that can write up everything from poetry to essays. While the results are still beset with factual inaccuracies and can be formulaic, the fact of the matter is the technology has improved greatly from its predecessors.

Tion got to thinking about the challenges associated with this tool. The online world is already an environment fraught with complications. What might a locked and loaded version of this AI mean to public discourse in the not too distant future? And what of the songs and poems and stories that once were the purview of the human soul? Might they too one day be replaced with an artificially enhanced reproduction?

The kid has developed an app called GPTZero that can distinguish between work done by humans and AI, and he’s getting lots of attention from journalists and educators alike. Tion doesn’t want to ban the software he’s working to identify. “It doesn’t make sense that we go into that future blindly,” he says. “Instead, you need to build the safeguards to enter that future.”

Amen to that.

  • Elon Musk exaggerated Tesla’s self-driving capabilities? I’m shocked I tell you! Shocked!
  • Netflix exceeded Wall Street expectations by adding 7.66 million subscribers during the fourth quarter. And they didn’t even need Tom Brady to do it.

A representation of vulnerability and security': Memorial honoring the Kings opens on Boston Common | WBUR News

Yeah, I have no idea either . . .

Lisa Marie Presley Dies after Possible Cardiac Arrest: What We Know

The untimely death of Lisa Marie Presley is still under investigation more than a week after her passing. Deferring a cause of death is not uncommon if the initial autopsy doesn’t provide an obvious answer. Lisa Marie’s end came much too soon and here’s hoping she finds peace on the other side.

  • The Menu starring Ralph Fiennes and Ana Taylor-Joy is great fun if you’re into cheeseburgers and dark comedy horror flicks. You’ll thank me for the tip.
  • I’m two days into my breakup with Amazon Prime and I feel better than I have in a long time. I’m even seeing a new streaming service- Paramount Plus- already!

Jay Withey: Buffalo hero breaks into school to rescue over 2 dozen people stranded in deadly blizzard | MEAWW

Jay Withey isn’t going to win an MVP. He’s never going to rush for 2,000 yards or throw 50 touchdown passes or lead the league in sacks. But all that stuff pales in comparison to what he did accomplish during the “storm of a generation” that ran roughshod over Buffalo.

On Christmas Eve, the 27 year-old mechanic rescued twenty-four people who were stranded in their cars. After which he led them to the Edge Academy school, breaking in so as to provide shelter for the group. And then he went and gathered up sustenance and blankets while they waited for help. He even wrote an apology letter to the school in which he promised to make things right. But here’s the thing. He had already made things right, twenty-four times over.

The school refused to press charges or take any money for the damages, and Whitley has become a global rock star thanks to his heroics. He’s gotten letters from as far away as Australia and he received a special delivery from former Bills great Thurman Thomas: Tickets to Super Bowl 57 in Glendale, Arizona. He’s hoping to watch his favorite team bring home a title.

If they follow this kid’s game plan, they just might do it.