Thursday, December 26, 2013

How About Those Mid Majors?

First off, I'd like to welcome myself back to the blogosphere from my unofficial Holiday Hiatus. Shopping, travel, and general revelry made me lose sight of what's truly important: the universe's least pertinent questions.

So let's get back at it. There's been a lot of talk about Damian Lillard of the Blazers and Paul George of the Pacers in the first third or so of the season, as there was much of last year. These guys are getting the respect they deserve now, but that hasn't always been the case. Each played their college hoops at a mid-major school, which don't get as much coverage or respect as the 6 major conferences.

Monday, December 23, 2013

How Are the Suns Contending? (Power Rankings, Week 8)

After winning nine straight, Oklahoma City lost to the middling Raptors on Sunday. However, the Thunder still claimed the top spot in these power rankings because Indiana lost twice this week. The Pacers fell to the No. 2 spot, with the Blazers, Heat, and Spurs nipping at their heels.

As we get ready for some great Christmas Day hoops, eat plenty of ham, don't forget the stuffing, and make sure not to feud with those close to you. (Oh, and look out for Jolly Old Saint Nick and his ReignDeer.*)

*Throwback alert!

Following the complete rankings, we'll take a deeper look at the Los Angeles Lakers and Phoenix Suns, two Western Conference teams on the fringe of the playoff race.

Sunday, December 22, 2013

How Gumpian Is Chris?

In last week's post, I was bragging about my buddy Chris's Forrest Gump voice. Decide for yourself. Is it a good impersonation?

How Good Are Pills?

We went out to brunch in Chicago on Saturday morning. As we left, my friend Rob said, "Doesn't that look like the bad guy from Dumb and Dumber?" I gave a glance down the bar and said, "It is the bad guy from Dumb and Dumber."

As soon as we walked out the door, we realized that we'd regret it if we didn't talk to him. We went back inside, and I walked toward the guy. I said, "I've gotta ask you. Are you..." He cut me off. "Yeah, that's me."

Hangin' with Joe Mentalino.

Thursday, December 19, 2013

How Funny Is the Forrest Gump Voice?

In honor of my best friend Chris, the world's premier Forrest Gump quoter,* let's look at the the top five funniest quotes to say in Forrest's voice.

*Read: loud and annoying.

Top 5 Funniest Forrest Gump Quotes

5. "I'm not a smart man, but I know what love IS."
Forrest, you've been chasing a heroine-addicted girl who's been nothing but mean to you for years. There's no indication at this point that you'll ever be together. Yet you still chase her. If that isn't love, then apparently I don't know what love IS.*

*We find out later that love IS passing HIV to your dim-witted husband. 

4. Now, my momma always told me that miracles happen every day. Some people don't think so, but they DO.
It was certainly a miracle when we got Chris to stop repeating this quote at 4 in the morning one night a couple weeks ago. I'm surprised we didn't have a noise complaint in our apartment building.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

How Rich Are the Non-Poor?

We've written twice on How Blank about the poverty of the non-rich. (Here's my post and here's Kavanaugh's). Today, let's discuss the wealth of the non-poor.

Over the weekend, our friends Jim and Emily got married,* and we took a bunch of photos at their family friends' house. The place was an old farmhouse that had been renovated into a beautiful home.

*Yup, I was in a wedding each of the last two weekends. It's wedding season!

Let's just say there were a few things in the house indicating that the owners were definitely members of the non-poor class. It led us to play a game called "You know how I know you're rich?"

Monday, December 16, 2013

How Many Questions Surround the Rockets? (Power Rankings, Week 7)

This week's NBA highlights included an Eastern conference finals previewa Manimal sighting, and a swell Dame.

The lowlights (at least for me) included basically eveything that happened with the Knicks. An example:

The Knicks remain firmly entrenched in the bottom 10 of these power rankings, and I'm resigned to that fact. Meanwhile, the Pacers and Thunder remain atop the rankings, with the Spurs, Blazers, and Heat rounding out the top five.

Following the complete rankings, I'll take a closer look at the mysterious Houston Rockets and the surprising Denver Nuggets.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

How Awesome Are These Christmas Toys?

When I was a sophomore in college, I wrote the following column in a December 2006 edition of Notre Dame's school newspaper, The Observer. I stand by the article, Mariah Carey-inspired title and all:

All I Want for Christmas 

What's that? I'm in college so I'm not supposed to love Christmas toys anymore?

I don't believe you. But even if I am too old to drool over the best merchandise in the Toys 'R' Us catalogue, I've always said that you can never grow too old to write a column in The Observer ranking the greatest toys ever. I've always said that.

Anyways, let's get this list started.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

How Bummed Out Will This Redskins Fan Be?

We were driving back from my buddy's wedding (Congrats, Mike and Katie!) in Virginia on Sunday, and we saw this guy:

The owner of this van fascinated me for two reasons:
1. He was willing to brave the weekend's icy East Coast weather to watch his team fall to 3-10 by losing at home to Kansas City BY 35 POINTS.
2. He's going to be really bummed out when the Redskins change their name.

Monday, December 9, 2013

How 'Bout Those Defending Champs? (Power Rankings, Week 6)

This week, the NBA featured Barkley barkingDuncan buzzer-beating, and Darth Bryant returning.

The Thunder routed the Pacers on Sunday, but thanks to an impressive +8.6 average point differential, Indy retained its title as the top team in the league.

Following this week's complete power rankings, I'll finally write something about the defending champion Miami Heat as well as the highly-entertaining Golden State Warriors. As Samuel L. Jackson would say, hold onto your butts.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

How Hero Are the Mexico City Firefighters?

The Spurs-Timberwolves game was postponed on Wednesday night because there was a fire in the arena. In honor of the responding firemen, I'm breaking out an oldie-but-goodie: 

To all my firefighter friends, I apologize. It's all in jest. Besides, I'm basically just a lousy kindergarten teacher:

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

How Could I Forget These Christmas Songs?

I deserve to be shot with a Red Ryder BB Gun after omitting this tune from yesterday's top 10 Christmas songs:

A Christmas Story gave us the leg lamp and the flagpole scene, but the scene in the Chinese restaurant might be the best. I love me some politically incorrect Christmas music.

I also forgot one more Christmas song that at least deserved honorable mention:

Monday, December 2, 2013

How Wonderful Is Christmas Music?

We went out to Michigan for Thanksgiving, and we listened to Christmas music for much of the ride out there. Of course the topic of our favorite songs came up, so I'll share mine here. You can open a YouTube link to each tune by clicking on the title...

Top 10 Christmas Songs

10. "Silent Night" (The Temptations) 
Because so many versions of this song deserve to be on the list, but I like this one the best.

9. "Fairytale of New York" (The Pogues)
Because it's not quite as cheerful as the other songs on this list. And also, who wouldn't want to spend Christmas Eve in the drunk tank?

8. "Linus and Lucy" (A Charlie Brown Christmas)
Because this song perked us up three times last week as we drove through the hills of Pennsylvania.

7. "Happy Christmas (War is Over)" (John Lennon)
Because it's the only positive thing in which Yoko ever participated.

6. "Wonderful Christmastime" (Paul McCartney)
Because I like Paul just a little bit better than John.

How Good Is Kevin Durant? (Power Rankings, Week 5)

Hopefully you're all recovered from your Thanksgiving food comas after eating like Eddy Curry for a few days. While many of us attended family parties this week, Jason Kidd was spilling, Steph Curry was crossing, and Lance Stephenson was dishing. Oh, and for the second straight week, Boogie Cousins was dissing.

The Spurs lost twice to fall out of the top spot and the Pacers finally claimed that No. 1 ranking. Following the complete power rankings, I'll take a deeper look at two Western Conference contenders -- the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Los Angeles Clippers.