...randomness surrounding Guided by Voices, Robert Pollard, and other great indie rock bands; a quasi objective look at "my" sporting teams; the random horror film; plus other crap as we see fit...all with a Pittsburgh based feel.

Friday, August 31, 2007

Joe Lies When He Cries

So I'm watching the Little League World Series Sunday, completely engulfed in the extra inning affair between Georgia and Japan. Maybe "engulfed" is a tad overboard. But the 8th inning walk-off HR by some kid from Georgia was pretty cool.

Georgia kids and families go berzerker. The Japanese kids cry.

What's with all the fricking crying?!?!? I mean...I'm not picking on the Japanese kids, because every losing team cries.

Not to sound like the old guy, "when I was a kid...blah, blah, blah," but when I was a kid, if you cried after a baseball game, you were ridiculed by your fellow Little League-ers. It was embarrassing. Now it's like the in-thing to do. Grow up, already. It's a frickin baseball game! It's not like your coach slapped you on National TV or anything...

Thursday, August 30, 2007

World Class: Goal, Stiff

Last night's Superliga Final, LA Galaxy vs. Pachuca, Chris Klein with a simply amazing goal in stoppage time to notch it at 1's. It dudn't get any better than this...

Game goes to PK's, where Landon Donovan proves once again why he's such a stiff. KICK THE BALL YOU ASS CLOWN!!!!!! You're a great player, but YOU ARE EMBARRASSING your country already!!!

For those who know Landy Cakes' little pre-PK ritual, this is old hat. But this time, he has a chance to win the game, and he gets completely snuffed by Pachuca's Miguel Calero. This video's rather long at 8 minutes (shows the entire Shootout), but worth seeing the end if you despise Donovan the way I do...

Pachuca wins. And I'm not sure I can root for US Soccer while Donovan is its leader. Real tough.

How do you spell 'Retard'?

Brett Myers, Phillies RHP and wife beater, gave up back-to-back HR's earlier this week, essentially blowing the game against the San Diego Padres. When approached by reporters, Myers basically said he thought they were good pitches and the two long balls were "pop-ups."

Interesting take on "pop-ups." Anyway...here's what ensued when he got annoyed by the reporters, including the interesting choice of the slur "retard"...

Hey...speaking of Ass Hats...

Travis Henry has fathered 9 children by 9 women in 4 different states. That's not the Ass Hat part. I mean...nothing wrong with having 9 kids, especially if you're an athlete with a $22.5 million contract and can afford to do so (ok...maybe some people will take issue with the 9 different women thingy).

But the problem is, Henry's spending habits have apparently interfered with his child support payments. In lieu of sending his kids cash, Henry saw it fit to spend $146,000 on bling. JHC!! That's $46,000 more than what he paid for his car!

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Futbol Notes, and stuff

Not the best of starts for my beloved Inter Milan. Marco Materazzi gets injured during Italy's lame ass loss against Hungary (he's got a groin), so he's going to be out until Xmas. Great.

Sunday, leading 1-Nil against Udinese in its Serie A lid lifter, GK Julio Cesar has a brain fart, gets called for a hand ball outside the top of the 18 yard box, and gets sent off. Down a man, Inter gives up the tying goal and the 3 points.

Worse yet...AC Milan, Juve, and Roma all win. WTF?!?

Heard Johnny Rotten, an avid Arsenal fan, was a special guest last night on Fox Football Fone-In, and I missed it dammit. I speak nothing but the f*%king English language...

more nothin to do with futbol. and we don't caaarrrrrrrrre...

I guess it could be worse for Inter. At least they scored. Unlike Barcelona who took home a Nil-Nil draw against Racing. I'll assume better days ahead for Ronnie, Eto'o, Messi, Henry and crew. Henry btw, came off the bench in the 60th minute for my boy Messi. I'm real curious as to how Frank Rijkaard is gonna get all this talent to work together. It better happen soon...as in this Sunday at Camp Nou.

Speaking of soccer...Toronto FC still hasn't scored. Those bastards.

And for the only good news for one of "my teams" this week...

Liverpool. Winners.

A couple more solid performances from Liverpool this week. 2 goals Saturday...1 from Momo and 1 from Voronin were enough to take care of Roy Keane's Sunderland squad. And yesterday, the Reds took care of Toulouse at Anfield to advance to the Knockout Stage of the Champions League. All the while w/o injured Stevie Gerrard (he's got a toe). Rest up, my boy.

Next 4 fixtures: (h) Derby, (a) Portsmouth, (h) Birmingham, (a) Wigan. Winner, Winner, Winnner, Winner. That's 12 points right there.

WATCH LIST this week...

Friday, 2:30pm, UEFA Super Cup Final, AC Milan vs. Sevilla, FSC

Saturday, Noon, Man Utd. vs. Sunderland, FSC

Saturday, 2:30pm, Inter Milan vs. Empoli, FSC

Sunday, 11:00am, Aston Villa vs. Chelsea

Looks like i need to visit Piper's Pub again this weekend if I intend on watching the Liverpool / Derby match.

AND WTF IS WITH GOLTV'S SCHEDULED LISTINGS!?!?!?! Updating your programming guide 1 day before a match is NOT CUTTING IT CHIEFS!!!!!! Hot Damn!

New Pollard Releases

Two (TWO!!!!) new Pollard releases due out in October kids. October 9th to be exact. Both on Merge Records:

Standard Gargoyle Decisions

Coast to Coast Carpet of Love

But that's old news. Go here to check out the newly designed CD jacket for the Advanced / Promo copy of both albums. Pretty cool stuff.


more Bob / GBV content...
Someone kindly mentioned to me the other day: "hey ass bag, why the lack of Bob / GBV tunes on Empties Crushed?" I prefer "Gary", but "ass bag" also works, if necessary. I guess sometimes I wrongfully assume most peeps reading these pages (the handful of you, that is) already know all this stuff.

But just in case, I'll throw some random samplings on the sidebar every week. Nothing download-able, but some tunes you can nibble on while you peruse this stupid site. Besides...this is all stuff you should own, not simply be downloading. Simply click on the embedded players to the right, and rawk at your leisure.

Badger Badger Badger Badger Badger

for those 2 Wisconsin fans here. gotta love Madison

It's all fun 'n games until October 13th. Circle it. In Happy Valley. Bucky goes down.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

I Christen thee, The Flying Wasp

Appears a federal marshal has repossessed a $1.5 million 70-foot yacht owned by former NBA-er and Choke Hold Artist, Latrell Sprewell.

damn, where's my Asshat guy when I need him :)

Wasn't Sprewell the same guy, who only a few short years ago when negotiating his last contract, said: "I got a family to feed."

Looks like "Spree" also had a boat to pay for. He has since defaulted on his $1.3 mil mortgage on the yacht, which was named "Milwaukee's Best."

More asshat news...

Stephon Marbury was the latest to come to Michael Vick's defense, saying there's basically no difference between dog fighting and hunting deer.

Without dissecting this too much, I guess you could start with the main difference: one is illegal, the other is not illegal.

Marbury even takes it a step further by calling Vick, "a good human being."

Good human beings don't hang, drown, electrocute, and strangle defenseless animals because they aren't up to snuff in the ring. Let me rephrase that...

Human beings don't hang, drown, electrocute, and strangle defenseless animals because they aren't up to snuff in the ring.

What Vick and his pals have done is indefensible and barbaric. I don't care what culture you're from. If you get enjoyment from torturing dogs, you're on the opposite end of the "good human being" spectrum. Being a scum bag has nothing to do with race. It's not a race issue. And I find it pretty amazing, not to mention pretty scary, to think that some people are completely oblivious to this.

When you blindly defend the indefensible, you lose any credibility you had. In the case of "Starbury," it was probably very little anyway.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

We Was Robbed!!!

It was a garbage goal. It was a garbage win. Or in this case...a draw.

No doubt about it, Liverpool deserved the 3 points Sunday against Chelsea. A win would've made us, along with Manchester City, one of only two perfect teams in the Premier League.

Down 1-nil in the 60th minute, Chelsea's Florent Malouda took a dive at the top of the 18, Steve Finnan was called for the phantom foul, and Frank Lampard converted to PK to notch it at 1's. Complete bullocks.

Not that it'll help us in the standings, but referee Rob Styles has officially apologized for the call, and he'll be suspended from calling any games this weekend. I guess I'll give the guy props for that. Still sucks, though.

It could be worse, however. We could be Manchester Utd (hehe). TWO POINTS AFTER 3 GAMES!?!?!?

Here's what's on tap for this week in futbol....

A slew of International Friendlies on tap WED, most of which can be seen on FSC:

12:30 Brasil v. Algeria
2:30 Sweden v. USA
5:00 England v. Germany (tape delay)

Lots of injuries in that Germany / England match. Piper's Pub will be showing my beloved:

3:00 Italy v. Hungary

Premier League Gameweek 4 action this w/e on FSC:

SAT: 10:00am, Arsenal v. Manchester City. Man City's 1st blemish??
SAT 12:00pm, Everton v. Blackburn
SUN 11:00am, Man Utd v. Tottenham. Two desperate squads.

Liverpool will be on Setanta Sports at 7:40am Saturday, taking on promoted Sunderland. Piper's Pub will be open bright 'n early, but unfortunately, I'll not be around.

Serie A underway this weekend on FSC as well, starting with the return of Juventus:

SAT: 2:30pm, Juventus v. Livorno
SUN: 9:00am, Inter Milan v. Udinese
SUN: 2:30pm, AS Roma v. Palermo

And finally, my beloved Toronto FC will be making a rare appearance on a national telecast, taking on DC United...Saturday, 7:30pm on FSC. All we are saaaayyying...is give us a goal!!!

Friday, August 17, 2007

No. Seriously.

The "Nation's only Bon Jovi / Journey tribute band," aptly named "Bon-Journey" will be playing tonight at Moondogs in Blawnox, PA.

"No two bands have captured the emotion and energy of youth to become the soundtrack to the lives of numerous generations as Bon Jovi and Journey."

Only in Pittsburgh.

I know I'll come off a bit pompous here, but oh well.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Ooze to the Finish

Quote of the Day...Steeler HC Mike Tomlin, after a reported poor week of practice which culminated in a pre-season home loss to Green Bay:

"We don't want to ooze to the finish."


So after Vick pleads guilty Friday, I bet you'll still hear some dopes blindly defend him.


Shawne Merriman has said he's abandoning that stupid, idiotic sack dance. Probably a smart move.

Doesn't look like I'm the only one embarrassed by the new Steeler mascot, Steely McBeam. Mascots may be nice for expansion teams, but not for proud franchises like our beloved Steelers.

Go here to sign a petition to oust McBeam.

And finally...for your footie news, and Mancester United laugh-in of the day:

Another draw for Man Utd Wednesday, leaving them with only 2 points after 2 games. Worse yet...already minus Rooney, the Mancs will be without all-world Christiano Ronaldo this Sunday against their in-city rival Manchester City. Appears Ronaldo got a straight red against Portsmouth, and then whined about it (hehe Jess!!!).

After Liverpool takes down the Blues Sunday, and another Man U draw, we'll be +3 on your arse with a game in hand!!!!!

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga

Really loving this album...

LOVING IT, I say...

(left click to play; right click to download)
:: Spoon - The Underdog ::

If you go over to Merge and purchase the vinyl version, they'll also set you up with a coupon to download the mp3's, which includes a free 22 minute EP called Get Nice! Nice!

Monday, August 13, 2007

EPL After 1, All is Good, Not so for TFC

The rest of the "Big 4" played Sunday, and compounded with a Liverpool win from Saturday, I'm pretty pleased.

Chelsea and Arsenal both got 3 points at home, but both struggled against 2 lower-end squads. Chelsea was tied at half with newly promoted Birmingham City, got a Michael Essien goal early in the 2nd, then held on for the W. Bad news for the Blues (and my fantasy squad)...Essien limped off later with an injury, and his status for Wed's match at Reading is uncertain. Good news for the Blues...they did get Didier Drogba back from injury, and new signings Claudio Pizarro and Florent Malouda both found the net.

Arsenal and GK Jens Lehmann escaped embarrassment with 2 late goals, the 2nd from Alexander Hleb in the 89th minute, to give the Gunners a 2-1 victory. Lehmann basically did his best Garo Yepremium impersonation on a botched clearing attempt, and gave Birmingham a 1-Nil lead 52 seconds in.

The Mancs weren't as fortunate. A Nil-Nil draw at home against Reading?!?!? Sorry, Jess (I lie...I'm NOT SORRY!!!) Kudos to Reading's GK Marcus Hahnemann. He was an absolute beast. Worse yet for Man Utd...Wayne Rooney broke a foot and will be our @ 2 months. Carlos Tevez...time to see if you were worth all the hassle.

So Chelsea and Man U will both be back in EPL action Wednesday, with road games at Reading and Portsmouth, respectively. Arsenal and Liverpool will both play in Champions League qualifiers. I'm real interested to see how Rafa plays this one against French side, Toulouse. Next week's match back at Anfield is EVERYTHING. At least for now...

Toronto FC. That's another story. A 3-nil loss to New York, and I can't remember the last time we scored a goal. I'm sad to say, I'm officially conceding any hopes for a playoff run.

Essential Football Viewing For the Upcoming Week:

Wed 8/15 - Chelsea vs. Reading - 3:00pm FSC

Sat 8/18 - Newcastle vs. Aston Villa - Noon FSC

Sat 8/18 - Steelers at Washington - NFL Preseason

Sun 8/19 - Manchester City vs. Manchester United - 8:30am - PIPER'S PUB!!!!!

Sun 8/19 - Chelsea vs. Liverpool - 11:00am - PIPER'S PUB!!!!!

Sun 8/19 - Argentine League - River Plate vs. San Lorenzo - 5:00pm

Also, on Sunday, and I've got no clue as to where / or if I can watch it...the Italian Super Cup kicks off, with my beloved Inter Milan vs. AS Roma. Appears GolTV no longer covers Italian Soccer, so this is gonna suck.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Gerrard's Game Winner

Stevie G. Here it is...

I believe he's saying:


Greatest Goal of My Life

and effin A!!! nobody has it on You Tube yet?!?!?!?

well, when you see it...

Liverpool has a 1-Nil lead for most of the match
(for about 30, i believe). Carragher gets called for a hand ball inside the box at @ the 85 minute mark, and Aston Villa notches it a 1's. 87th minute...those cheeky bastards from Aston Villa foul Stevie Gerrard...about 10-15 yds outside the 18 (i believe)...

Gerrard buries it around the wall, top right-side corner....GOOOOOOAAAAAAAAALLLLLLLLL!!!!!


Hail Hail...the greatest player in England...

what a beautiful start to the season...next Sunday...

Chelsea goes down!!!!

PIPER'S PUB, 11:00am start.

Friday, August 10, 2007

Bundelsiga Begins, Liverpool Starts Title Run Tomorrow

Never gave the Bundesliga much thought last year. I mean...following 3 different teams from 3 different Euro leagues can be taxing as it is. But after catching the Stuttgart / Schalke 04 game today, that may have to change.

German football ignorance injection: what does the 04 stand for after Schalke? No. Seriously.

Anyway, what an incredibly exciting game. Stuttgart comes back from a 1-Nil deficit in the 2nd to take a 2-1 lead, only to squander it in the last 10 minutes (or so) on a Ivan Rakitic goal (Rakitic is a Croatian dude. Ned, stand up and be proud my friend...or at least have a beer).

Final 2-2.

So tomorrow, I expect Bayern Munich to start out with 3 points against the promoted Hansa Rostock, and my buddy Nick's squad will never look back. After all, they've got an Italian leading them up front now. Luca Toni, along with other signings Ribery and Klose, will get Bayern Munich back atop the German table.

Wanna win? Get the ball to the Italians.

If Bayern wins Bundesliga, and Toni is a major factor, it'll be fun razzing my favorite little Bayern Munich buddy (who has also claimed that Serie A is shat). Maybe I should get my first #9 Bayern jersey? After all, I loved Toni on Italy's National side, but I very well couldn't cheer for him while he was on Fiorentina.

More importantly, the EPL starts tomorrow, and I'm pumpt. My beloved Liverpool went on a major signing binge this offseason. Babel, Benayoun, Veronin, and stud Athletico Madrid striker Fernando Torres = Championship. There. I said it.

Here's how the EPL will pan out this year. Or maybe not:

  2. Manchester Utd. (sorry Jess)
  3. Chelsea
  4. Arsenal
  5. Tottenham
  6. Aston Villa
  7. Manchester City
  8. Portsmouth
  9. Newcastle
  10. Everton
  11. Blackburn
  12. Bolton
  13. Middlesbrough
  14. Reading
  15. Sunderland
  16. Fulham
  17. West Ham
  18. Birmingham
  19. Wigan
  20. Derby

Office at Schuba's

HEY YOU CHICAGO KIDS...get out tonite and see Office at Schuba's. I'm really liking these guys & gals. You will, too. Apologies for the late notice, but if you miss them tonight, make sure to see them at the Double Door in 2 weeks:

Ran into Tom, a friend of a friend of a friend (or something like that), a few weeks ago at Pitchfork Fest. Nice young fellow...and I'm told their new album A Night at the Ritz will be out this fall on New Line Records. And HEY...what'ya know....check their MySpace page, and you'll find there's confirmation on that.

Fun, happy, stuff this here band. Kinda New Pornographers-esque, perhaps. And they do a nice little cover of Daniel Johnston's "Walking the Cow." Go to their MySpace page and listen to "The Ritz." It's a hit. Enjoy:

(left click to play; right click to download)
:: Office - Walking the Cow ::

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Steely McBeam

I'm at a loss for words here.

sidenote: i did promise 2-a-days

Woodley Hits, Happy B-Day Sid, the Insignificance of Bonds

What was up with the NFL Network this past Sunday...repeatedly interrupting Michael Irvin's Hall of Fame induction speech for the Steelers / Saints game?!?! The nerve of some people.

While our old #55 is laid up in Miami for the pre-season, having another knee surgery, the new #55 is lighting people up. Ever notice when the Steeler brass decides to let someone go (i.e. Joey Porter), they never amount to anything with their new team? My prediction is that the same will result with Porter as a Dolphin.

Lamar Woodley jacks up Najeh Davenport...

kinda reminds me of Kendrell Bell, only a few short years ago, when he jacked up Jerome Bettis in training camp.

More predictions...I went over the Beloved's 16 game schedule, and I'm saying:


We start the season 5-0 going into the BYE, with a pretty easy schedule:

Sept. 9 at Cleveland = WINNER
Sept. 16 Buffalo = WINNER
Sept. 23 San Fran = WINNER
Sept. 30 at Arizona = WINNER
Oct. 7 Seattle = WINNER

after the BYE, it gets a little tougher, so I'll be realistic here. With 2 weeks prep under my guy Mike Tomlin, we'll split the next 2:

Oct. 21 at Denver = WINNER, but potential loser
Oct. 28 at Cincy = if we win at Denver, then loser; if we lose at Denver = WINNER

Either way, we're 6-1 after the 8th week. Then we come home for 4 out of 5, where we'll hold serve on all the home games, but drop 1 at New York:

Nov. 5 Baltimore = WINNER
Nov. 11 Cleveland = WINNER
Nov. 18 at NY Jets = loser
Nov. 26 Miami = WINNER
Dec. 2 Cincinnati = WINNER

That takes us to 10-2 coming down the stretch. Tough finish to the season, and again keeping it real:

Dec. 9 at New England = loser
Dec. 16 Jacksonville = WINNER
Dec. 20 at St Louis = WINNER

At 12-3, with the division wrapped up and Baltimore fighting for their playoff lives, as much as it pains me to say it:

Dec. 30 at Baltimore = loser




Happy belated B-Day to a classy kid, and the best hockey player in the world!! Sidney Crosby turned 20 earlier this week, and still can't legally have a beer. Go hang out with the Jordan Staal, Sid.


Barry Bonds hit his record breaking HR a couple days ago. And Empties Crushed still doesn't care, or see the significance.

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Shit Mayor

Let's Get Organized!!!

Blanco Gets Buried, Inter Buries Man U.

Holy crap. So far behind here. My apologies. We're gonna have to do some Mike Tomlin-esque 2-A-Days to get caught up.

Got to visit the coolest little town in Canada a few weeks ago. Not sure of the actual population of the home of Sleeman, so "little" may be relative here. More on Guelph, ON when I get a chance to download some pix in the next few days, including the best wings ever and limo rides to BMO Field (pronounced "BEE-mo" for you non-footie fans).

Yeah, the game kinda sucked from a Toronto FC standpoint (a 3-Nil loss in which I was finally convinced that Danny Dichio is most definitely awkward). But we had a blast regardless. The squad is completely decimated by injuries, and as a 1st year expansion team, they've got little depth to remedy. OK...we suck. For this year, at least. But without a doubt...we've got the greatest fans in MLS (notice the "we" inclusions :). Our seats were about 20 rows directly behind Chicago's net in the 2nd. I don't think our streamers made it this far though...

Too much fun. Incredible atmosphere. So the loss to Chicago, followed by a nil-nil draw to Beckham-less L.A., puts a serious dent in our playoff hopes. That's OK. We'll be back to BMO and Guelph again...many, many times if I have any say in the matter.

While I've come to grips with the reality of TFC's 1st season in MLS...I've still got Inter Milan!!!!

Any one catch Inter's 3-2 victory over mighty Manchester Utd AT OLD TRAFFORD!?!?!? YEAH BER-BER!!! (take THAT, Jess!!!) Sir Fergie played his starting 11 the entire game in front of 73,000 fans, saying they were looking at this "friendly" as a true test to the upcoming season.

I hear all the time how much better the EPL is than Italy's Serie A. From top to bottom, I will agree. But every time, at least of late, that England's best has met Italy's best...Italy has come out on top. Witness AC Milan's run through Man U and Liverpool to the Champions League title earlier this year. And who just won their 4th World Cup last year?!? So this notion of England's superiority over Italy is bullocks, as far this novice can tell.

OK, while I'm pounding my Italian chest...kudos to Aston Villa for taking down Inter 3-Nil a few days later. Bobby McMahon, on the Fox Soccer Report a few days ago, predicted a 6th place finish for Villa in the EPL. Is my beloved Liverpool in trouble this Saturday for its opening match of the season?

Speaking of football, here's my personal essential football viewing schedule for the week:

FRI. 2:30pm, GolTV, Bundesliga opener, last year's Top 2: Stuttgart vs. Schalke (replay at 6:00pm)

SAT. 10:00am, FSC, EPL opening day, West Ham v. Man City

SAT. 12:00pm, FSC, Liverpool vs. Aston Villa - PIPER'S PUB and Scotch Eggs!!!!

SAT. 7:30pm, HEINZ FIELD, NFL pre-season, Steelers vs. Green Bay

SUN. 11:00am, FSC, Man Utd. vs. Reading; I'll have to DVR this one for Jess. Down, Down, Down...red team's going down. Down, down, down...red team's going down